At all party meet, Opposition takes up issue of farmers agitation with PM Modi, seeks debate - The Daily Guardian
Connect with us

News

At all party meet, Opposition takes up issue of farmers agitation with PM Modi, seeks debate

Published

on

New Delhi [India], January 30 (ANI): Opposition parties on Saturday demanded an extensive debate on the farmers’ agitation as a consequence of farm laws. The demand was made at the all-party meeting convened by Prime Minister Narendra Modi where he assured them that the government was willing to discuss all agriculture-related issues with the opposition and sought their cooperation in running the parliament smoothly.
According to sources, Congress’ Ghulam Nabi Azad, Trinamool Congress’ Sudip Bandopadhyay, Aam Aadmi Party’s Bhagwant Mann, Vinayak Raut from the Shivsena and Balwinder Singh Bhunder from the Shiromani Akali Dal spoke at length on farmers’ agitation and sought the government’s assurance that it would discuss all contentious issues related to the new laws. They also reportedly asked the government not to see them as enemies.
Azad reportedly said in the meeting that Congress has already warned the government about the agitation and now the government has to deal with the consequences, sources informed.
Bhagwant Mann from AAP appreciated the fact that everyone got a chance at speaking on the issues. He too reportedly told the PM that a few elements entered the farmers’ agitation and created chaos whereas farmers went back to their respective places and that FIRs are being registered against the actual farmers.
He also asked for the repeal of farm laws.
Most opposition leaders were of the view that the government needs to discuss the laws again in both houses of parliament and also seek to address the misgivings of the agitating farmers.
At the all-party-meet. RCP Singh JDU chief spoke in support of farm laws.
GK Vasan, Tamil Manila Congress – to appeal to the members to raise issues and spoke at great length and said that Congress had already warned about agitation on farm laws and now government has to deal with it. (ANI)

The Daily Guardian is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@thedailyguardian) and stay updated with the latest headlines.

For the latest news Download The Daily Guardian App.

News

Assembly Elections 2021: 18.68 crore electors to choose 824 MLAs in 4 states, Puducherry

Published

on

By

New Delhi [India], February 26 (ANI): A total of 824 assembly constituencies shall be going for polls in four states–Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Assam– and the Union Territory of Puducherry, said Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sunil Arora on Friday.
The polling in these states will start from March 27 and end on April 29. The counting of votes for elections to four states and one UT will be held on May 2. As many as 18.68 crore electors will cast vote at 2.7 lakh polling stations in Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Kerala, Assam and Puducherry, Arora said during a press conference here.
The CEC added that the polling time has been increased by one hour and the Postal Ballot has been extended to voters above age of 80, people with disabilities and people involved in essential services. “Adequate CAPFs deployment shall be ensured during elections. All critical, vulnerable polling stations have been identified and an adequate number of CAPFs will be deployed,” CEC Sunil Arora said.
With this, the Model Code of Conduct has come into force immediately in four states and Puducherry after the announcement of the election dates.
Here is all you need to know about the polling in these states and Puducherry:
Assam: The term of the 14th legislative assembly of Assam is up to 31 May 2021. The Assembly elections for 126 seats will be held in three phases starting from March 27. In 2016 Assembly polls were held in two phases.
A total of 2,32,44,454 electors will elect the candidates in Assam for the 15th legislative assembly of Assam.
Of the 126 seats, the number of reserved seats for SCs is eight and for STs it is 16.The number of polling booths in Assam has been increased from 24,890 to 33,530, an increase of 35.71 per cent.
Addressing a press conference, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora said: “In Assam, elections shall be held in three phases. The first phase of notification is March 2 and 47 seats in 12 districts will go to the polls. The last date of nomination March 9 and the date of poll is March 27. In the second phase, 39 constituencies in 13 districts will go to polls on April 1. A total of 41 constituencies in 12 districts will go to polls on April 6.”
In 2016, the BJP scripted history and formed the government for the first time in the state ending Congress’s 15-year rule. BJP and its allies Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) and Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) won a combined 86 seats in the 126-member Assam Assembly. BJP bagged 60 seats, AGP 14 and BPF 12 seats. Congress, which ran the state for three straight terms under the leadership of Tarun Gogoi, could manage to win only 26 seats.
In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, BJP won nine of the 14 parliamentary seats while its allies the AGP and the BPF drew a blank. On the other hand, Congress bagged three seats and the AIUDF and an independent won one seat each.
Earlier in January, the Assam Congress unit had announced that five political parties including Congress, All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF), Communist Party of India (CPI), CPI(Marxist), CPI(Marxist-Leninist) and Anchalik Gana Morcha would contest the state Assembly polls together to oust the Sonowal government from power.
The BJP is relying heavily on central leadership to return to power again in the state. Recently, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, BJP chief JP Nadda visited the state and addressed the huge gatherings in different parts of the state.
Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal is pushing the issue of insurgency in the state and has said that his government is working to make Assam a terror-free state. Five militant groups of Karbi Anglong surrendered in front of Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal at a function in Guwahati on February 23, ahead of the state’s assembly elections. The development comes a year after the Modi government signed the Bodo peace accord — bringing an end to the long violent movement for a separate Bodoland.
Kerala: The election for 140-member Kerala Assembly in 14 districts will be held in a single phase on April 6.
The tenure of the 14th Kerala legislative assembly will come to an end on June 1, 2021. A total of 2,67,88,268 electors will elect the candidates in Kerala for the 15th legislative assembly.
For Assembly poll 2021, the number of polling booths in Kerala has been extended from 21,498 to 40,771. The counting of votes will be held on May 2.
According to the commission, of the 140 Assembly seats, 14 seats are reserved for SC category and two are reserved for ST category candidates.
In the 2016 Kerala assembly election, the CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front ( LDF) bagged 91 seats in 140-member Assembly. The BJP opened its account for the first time from the Nemom constituency, where BJP veteran O.Rajagopal won the seat.
Wresting power from Congress -led United Democratic Front (UDF), led by Oommen Chandy, CPI(M) is hoping that its Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan who is also the lead campaigner for the assembly polls will ensure the party’s return to power after the polls.
This time around the BJP is focusing more on the Kerala polls and managed to rope in ‘Metro Man’ E Sreedharan who joined the BJP yesterday at Malappuram.
Against the big development push in Kerala that the CPI(M) is projecting as a major poll plank, BJP is trying to cross swords equally riding on the development agenda set by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The latest entrant to turn the tide in favour of BJP is E Sreedharan, 88 year old, who is hailed as Metro Man of India after his successful stint with DMRC, who declares that he is open to become Chief Minister of Kerala, if BJP comes to power.
“If BJP comes to power in Kerala, I am ready to become the chief minister. The party has not asked me till now as it is too premature. But if BJP asks me, I am willing to take up the post and show how a state can be run efficiently like we are running DMRC,” Sreedharan said earlier.
The Congress is betting huge on Rahul Gandhi. In the 2019 general elections, the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) coalition registered a remarkable victory with wins in 19 out of the 20 parliamentary constituencies. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi who is spearheading the campaign for Assembly polls 2021 is Lok Sabha MP from Waynad.
Political parties including the ruling Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M), Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Congress and other parties had started campaigning even before the announcement of the date of the polls.
The United Democratic Front (UDF) led by Congress and comprising like-minded parties is pitched against Left Democratic Front (LDF) led by CPI-M comprising left and like-minded parties
A faction in the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), a constituent in the ruling LDF has parted ways with the CPI(M)-led alliance and joined the Congress-led front.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Aditynath recently flagged off Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s Vijaya Yatra from Kasaragod, Kerala in presence of state party president K Surendran.
A host of BJP national leaders will visit Kerala to partake in the Vijaya Yatra rally in various districts which includes Union Minister Gen VK Singh, former Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis, Union Ministers including Pralhad Joshi, Nirmala Sitharaman, Smriti Irani among others. Union Home Minister Amit Shah will be present at the concluding session of the rally on March 7 in Thiruvananthapuram.
Among the issues which will likely to gain space in the campaign are the Kerala Gold smuggling case, the alleged backdoor appointment made by Left Democratic Front (LDF) government.
The gold smuggling case pertains to the smuggling of gold in the state through diplomatic channels. It had come to light after 30 kg gold worth Rs 14.82 crores smuggled in a consignment camouflaged as diplomatic baggage was busted by the Customs in Thiruvananthapuram on July 5, 2020. It is being probed by the Enforcement Directorate (ED), NIA and Customs department.
The opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala alleged that maximum illegal appointments were carried out in the IT department, a portfolio handled by the Chief Minister himself. The Congress and the United Democratic Front have been attacking the state government over the protest of Public Service Commission rank holders in Thiruvananthapuram.
In the 2019 general elections, the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) coalition has registered a remarkable victory with wins in 19 out of the 20 parliamentary constituencies.
Tamil Nadu: Tamil Nadu assembly elections will be held in a single phase on April 6 and the counting of votes will be done on May 2.
The term of the fifteenth legislative assembly in Tamil Nadu is ending on May 2, 2021. As many as 6,28,23,749 electors will choose candidates for the sixteenth legislative assembly in Tamil Nadu.
Ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) is contesting the poll in a pre-poll alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). MK Stalin’s Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) has joined hands with Congress. This time actor-turned-politician Kamal Hassan’s party Makkal Neethi Maiam (MNM) is also in the fray.
In the last Assembly elections held in 2016, the DMK won 80, Congress won just eight, AIADMK won 134 seats, BJP won 4 seats and the rest were won by other parties and independent candidates.
The opposition Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK)-led front, which includes the Congress, had won 37 of the 39 Lok Sabha seats in Tamil Nadu in 2019.
Ahead of the Assembly polls, the Tamil Nadu government led by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami had on February 20 issued an order to withdraw 308 cases registered against 26,460 people in connection with Jallikattu protests in 2017.
Hours before the announcement of state election dates,Tamil Nadu Chief Minister E Palaniswami today declared a gold loan waiver. Gold loans against up to six sovereigns given by cooperative banks to farmers and the poor will be waived, the state government announced.
Recently, the government increased the retirement age of state government employees to 60 years. DMK president M K Stalin took a swipe at Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami saying the announcement was made with an eye on the forthcoming assembly elections in the state.
“Raising the retirement age is welcome, albeit the announcement made for the election,” the DMK leader said in a Facebook post on Thursday. He said the chief minister should have fixed the age criteria of 60 years, when he had increased the retirement age to 59 from 58 years in May last year.
West Bengal: West Bengal will witness eight-phased Assembly polls beginning March 27.
The tenure of the 16th Legislative Assembly of West Bengal will end on May 30 this year. A total of 7,34,07,832 voters will choose their representative for the 17th Legislative Assembly of West Bengal.
Addressing a press conference, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora said: “West Bengal will see eight-phase elections. 30 Assembly constituencies in five districts will go to polls in the first phase on March 27. 30 Assembly constituencies in four districts will go to polls in the second phase on April 1. In the third phase, 31 constituencies in 3 districts will go to polls on April 6. 44 constituencies in five districts will go for polling on April 10.”
“In the fifth phase, 45 constituencies in six districts will witness polling on April 17. 43 constituencies in four districts in the sixth phase will go to polls on April 22. 36 constituencies in five districts in the seventh phase will go for polling on April 26. In the eighth and final phase, 35 constituencies in four districts will witness polling on April 29,” he said.
West Bengal is likely to witness a triangular contest this time with TMC, Congress-Left alliance and BJP in the fray.
While Mamata Banerjee is seeking her third consecutive term, BJP has set a target of winning 200 seats in the 294-member state Assembly. Congress and the Left have stitched the alliance for the polls and had already finalised the seat-sharing agreement. They are also in touch with the Indian Secular Front (ISF), recently floated by influential minority leader Abbas Siddique.
In 2016 West Bengal Assembly elections, out of the 294 seats, Congress had managed to win 44 seats while the Left Front bagged 33 seats. The ruling TMC secured 211 seats and the BJP had won 3 seats.
The BJP made deep inroads in the state in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections winning 18 seats and reducing TMC’s tally to 22. Out of the total 42 Lok Sabha constituencies in West Bengal, Congress won two seats, the Left drew a blank.
After BJP’s performance in the 2019 polls, several TMC leaders have joined the party led by JP Nadda.
Puducherry: Polling for 30 assembly seats in Puducherry will be held on April 6. Of the 30 Assembly seats, five are reserved for the Scheduled Caste candidates.
As many as 10,02,589 electors will choose the candidates for the 15 legislative Assembly of Puducherry.
The Congress-led government in the Union Territory fell before completing its five-year term under the Chief Minister V Narayansamy.
Narayanasamy had resigned on February 22 ahead of a floor test in the 33-member House (including three nominated) following the resignations of five Congress and one Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) legislators. On February 23, President Ram Nath Kovind accepted the resignation of Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy and his council of ministers.
Kiran Bedi was replaced as Puducherry L-G with Telangana governor Tamilisai Soundararajan being given the additional charge of the Union Territory.
In the 2016 Assembly polls, Congress had won 15 seats, All India NR Congress eight seats, All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) got four seats, DMK walked away with two MLAs. BJP could not win any seats.
In the 2019 general elections, Dr Narayanasamy Kesavan of Congress won the single-seat from the Union Territory.
This year, BJP president of the Puducherry unit, V Saminathan is trying hard to woo voters with the help of the party’s central leadership.
On February 25, Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone for the development of Minor Port at Puducherry under Sagarmala Scheme. He also inaugurated the Blood Centre at Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER), Puducherry, which will function as a research laboratory and a training centre for the short- term and continuous blood bank personnel training in all aspects of transfusion.
Rahul Gandhi visited Puducherry on February 17 and addressed fishermen in the neighbouring Solai Nagar in the Muthialpet assembly constituency and interacted with students of the Bharathidasan Government College for women.
Puducherry Lt Governor today announced a 2 per cent reduction in VAT (Value Added Tax) on petrol and diesel in the union territory before the announcement of dates by ECI.

For the Assembly Elections 2021, the Election Commission has issued a protocol for voting. All poll officials will be vaccinated against Covid-19 before elections for five assembly polls, the commission said.
ECI guidelines for the upcoming elections include– door-to-door campaigning to be restricted to five persons including the candidate, polling officials to be vaccinated, separate norms for suspected COVID-19 patients.
Central Armed Police Forces would be deployed and also special observers from other states would be nominated for monitoring the expenses during the assembly elections.
According to official communication accessed by ANI, a total of 45 CAPFs companies will be deployed in Tamil Nadu, 40 in Assam, 10 in Puducherry, 125 in West Bengal and 30 companies in Kerala. (ANI)

Continue Reading

News

Court asks Delhi Police to conduct probe in impartial manner in case against Deep Sidhu

Published

on

By

New Delhi [India], February 26 (ANI): A Delhi court on Friday directed Delhi Police to conduct an investigation in a fair and impartial manner in the case against the January 26 accused Deep Sidhu and said that Investigating Officer is not supposed to collect the evidence only to prove the guilt of the accused, rather he has to bring true picture before it.
“The Investigating Officer is duty bound to conduct proper investigation in the matter in fair and impartial manner. He (IO) is not supposed to collect the evidence only to prove the guilt of the accused, rather he has to bring the true picture before the court,” the court said.
Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Gajender Singh Nagar said: “Police officials are directed to investigate on the points as mentioned in the application made by the complainant to unearth the truth.”
“Furthermore, appropriate action may be taken and appropriate sections may be added if accused (Sidhu) is trying to mislead the investigation by fabricating false evidence.”
With this direction, the court disposed of the plea filed by Deep Sidhu seeking fair probe.
Delhi Police said that accused cannot guide the police to conduct investigation in a particular manner and police is duty bound to conduct fair and impartial investigation.
However, the accused cannot be allowed to divert the investigation of the police from its path, the prosecutor said.
Earlier today, Deep Sidhu urged the Delhi Court to preserve the CCTV footage of the Red Fort which is already with the investigating agency and said visuals show that he did not participate in any act of violence and rather he was helping the police in pacifying the crowd during January 26 Red Fort violence.
Appearing for Deep Sidhu, advocate Abhishek Gupta told Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Gajender Singh Nagar that the applicant accused is apprehensive that the CCTV footage of Red Fort from 10 AM to 4 PM and the video will also not be considered by the investigating agency.
Sidhu, therefore, sought direction from the Court to preserve the CCTV footage, call and made part of the record so that it would help him to prove his innocence.
Sidhu’s lawyer Advocate Gupta also sought to conduct fair and impartial investigation in the matter.
The lawyer also told the court he was falsely implicated in the matter and made victim of the circumstances.
Advocate Abhishek Gupta also apprised the court that Sidhu had shared various videos in the public domain with the Investigating Agency which show his innocence, however, there was no interrogation done with respect to the said videos while in police custody and that therefore, the applicant is apprehensive that fair and impartial investigation may not be done in the instant case. That all the videos/proof of the innocence of the applicant/accused were provided to the investigating agency in a pen drive, he said.
“That during the investigation/interrogation it was clearly stated by the Applicant/accused that no call was ever made by him in connection with going to Red Fort on the Republic Day nor did he join any tractor rally (All Videos containing the statement of Applicant shared with the Investigating Agency). It was also indicated that there were certain videos wherein some others were calling upon farmers to reach Red Fort on Republic Day (All videos containing such statements shared with the Investigating Agency), ” Sidhu’s lawyer submitted.
He also told the court that during investigation it was also disclosed by Sidhu that he was at a hotel at Murthal till 12 PM on January 26 and that he left for Delhi only after checking out.
He also stated that the CCTV footage of the concerned hotel, which was in working condition, and the checkout bill showing the time/payment details, as online payment was made, be obtained to ascertain the said fact (CCTV footage of Hotel Shree Ji Murthal of January 26, 2021 from 8 AM to 1 PM along with bill paid and mode of payment along with its accurate time).
He told the Court that Sidhu reached the area around Red Fort only around 2 PM and he also gave the entire route from Murthal. Huge crowd had already gathered at the spot before Sidhu reached there. For the said purpose, Sidhu had asked the Investigating Agency to obtain his own phone location and also the car navigation system, however, the investigating agency has chosen not to check the said evidence which completely belies the case thrusted upon the applicant, the lawyer said.
Sidhu was arrested by the Delhi police special cell on February 9 for his alleged involvement in 26 January violence in the national capital after which was he was sent to seven-day police custody the same day.
Currently, he is in judicial custody in the matter. Delhi Police had earlier told the Court that Deep Sidhu was the main instigator. He allegedly instigated the mob not to follow the permitted route of the Kisan parade and to breach barricades with tractors on January 26.
Delhi Police had told the Court that there was video evidence to show that Sidhu entered Red Fort with supporters carrying lathis and flags. Delhi Police also told the court that he was at the rampart of the fort where a flag was raised.
On Republic Day, protestors did not follow the prearranged route and broke barricades to enter Delhi, clashed with police, and vandalised property in several parts of the national capital during the farmers’ tractor rally. They also entered the Red Fort and unfurled their flags from its ramparts.
Farmers have been protesting at the different borders of the national capital since November 26 against the three newly enacted farm laws: Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; the Farmers Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020. (ANI)

Continue Reading

News

If TN can hold elections in one day, why not WB?: asks TMC’s Sougata Roy

Published

on

By

By Joymala Bagchi
Kolkata (West Bengal) [India], February 26 (ANI): Trinamool Congress (TMC) MP Sougata Roy has questioned the Election Commission of India’s announcement over eight-phased polling for 294 Assembly seats of West Bengal starting from March 27.
Calling the decision “unfair”, he asked the poll body if a state like Tamil Nadu can hold an election in one day then why West Bengal needs eight phases.
“I am very unhappy. It is unfair for West Bengal to have elections in eight phases. All activities will come to a standstill for more than a month. All activities including schools, colleges and development works will come to a standstill. If Tamil Nadu can hold elections in one day then why West Bengal need eight phases?” Roy asked while speaking to ANI, immediately after election dates were announced by ECI.
He further questioned if the eight-phased polling for the state has been requested by the BJP.
“We do not know if it (election in eight phases in West Bengal) is on the plea of the ruling party (BJP) at the Centre. Because as far I see there is “no abnormality” in law and order situation in West Bengal,” he added.
The ECI has appointed two special police observers — Vivek Dubey and MK Das — for West Bengal.
On this decision, Roy said, “That also appears unusual to me, because last time there was only one police observer. Why we need two police observers… it is also not clear, only the Election Commission can explain the logic behind this decision,” Roy said.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee questioned the Election Commission’s decision to bifurcate the polls into eight phases and alleged that it was being done to suit the convenience of the BJP.

Addressing media persons here after the poll dates were announced, Banerjee said, “I request the ECI to consider West Bengal as their own state, not through the eyes of BJP. I respect ECI’s decision, but why have they broken-up the districts. South 24 Parganas is our stronghold. Voting will be held in three different phases there. Has it been done for the convenience of PM Modi and Amit Shah?”
The ECI on Friday announced that West Bengal will witness eight-phased Assembly polls (in contrast to seven-phased polling last time). While the voting will begin on March 27, the counting of votes will take place on May 2.
The Model Code of Conduct (MCC) in the state has come into force after the announcement of the election dates.
Moreover, the commission has made adequate arrangements to ensure the effective implementation of MCC guidelines. (ANI)

Continue Reading

News

TDP releases party manifesto for municipal polls

Published

on

By

Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh) [India], February 26 (ANI): Telugu Desam Party (TDP) National General Secretary Nara Lokesh on Friday released TDP’s manifesto for forthcoming municipal polls in Andhra Pradesh.
Promises in the TDP manifesto included the revival of Anna canteens to provide food at Rs 5, halving of taxes increased allegedly by Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party (YSRCP) government and Job Mela for unemployed youth once in every six months.
There was also a promise in the manifesto that the beautification of municipalities and corporations will be undertaken by TDP. Permanent auto stands with free drinking water and toilets and meeting halls for Mission for Elimination of Poverty in Muslim Areas (MEPMA) groups were other items in the TDP manifesto.
The manifesto promised to increase the salaries of sanitation workers to Rs 21,000 and abolishment of tax on water. It also said that TDP will provide free drinking water and complete the Township and Infrastructure Development Corporation (TIDCO) housing projects.
Lokesh said, “Jagan is a gun without bullets. There is no law and order in the state. Atrocities against women have increased.”
“Electricity charges are drastically increased. Bus charges and water tax rates are rising. Fuel prices have shot up during Jagan’s rule. Price of sand, cement has also increased,” he said.
“YSRCP government is giving money to the people with the right hand and grabbing it with the left. People both in rural and urban areas are being looted,” he further said.
“The government has ample amount of funds but they are not spending it on infrastructure projects as they won’t get any commissions. The government is not paying for any welfare schemes either,” he added.
On the alleged Visakhapatnam Steel Plant privatisation, Lokesh said that the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister surrendered to the Modi led Union Government and alleged that the YSRCP MP YS Avinash Reddy is part of the committee which took the decision to privatise Vizag Steel Plant.
He further alleged that the chief minister used religion for his political growth. “He has taken holy dips in all holy rivers. But after he came to power, almost 150 temples have been attacked.” (ANI)

Continue Reading

News

Has 8- phase polling in Bengal done for convenience of PM Modi, Amit Shah? Mamata asks ECI

Published

on

By

Kolkata (West Bengal) [India], February 26 (ANI): With dates for West Bengal Assembly polls announced on Friday, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee questioned the Election Commission’s decision to bifurcate the polls into eight phases and alleged that it was being done to suit the convenience of the BJP.
Addressing mediapersons here after the poll dates were announced , Banerjee said, “I request the ECI to consider West Bengal as their own state, not through the eyes of BJP. I respect ECI’s decision, but why have they broken-up the districts. South 24 Parganas is our stronghold. Voting will be held in three different phases there. Has it been done for the convenience of PM Modi and Amit Shah?”
Mamata Banerjee alleged that the BJP was misusing its authority as the ruling party at the Centre to influence state polls.
“The Centre cannot misuse its powers for a state election. If they do it, then they will have to face the music. We are common people. We will fight our battle. BJP has sent money to all districts through agencies. I Request ECI to stop the misuse of money.”
“The Union Home Minister should be concerned about the country. He cannot misuse his powers for elections here. We welcome the Prime Minister but he cannot misuse his powers for West Bengal polls,” added Banerjee.
She further alleged that the Centre has been using the government agencies to fight her.
“I am the only woman serving chief minister at the present. They are so scared of me. They are coming with all force along with agencies just to defeat one woman,” said Banerjee.
The ECI on Friday announced that West Bengal will witness eight-phased Assembly polls beginning March 27. The counting of votes will take place on May 2.
Addressing a press conference, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora said, “West Bengal will see eight-phase elections. 30 Assembly constituencies in five districts will go to polls in the first phase on March 27. 30 Assembly constituencies in four districts will go to polls in the second phase on April 1. In the third phase, 31 constituencies in 3 districts will go to the polls on April 6. 44 constituencies in five districts will go for polling on April 10.”
“In the fifth phase, 45 constituencies in six districts will witness polling on April 17. 43 constituencies in four districts in the sixth phase will go to polls on April 22. 36 constituencies in five districts in the seventh phase will go for polling on April 26. In the eighth and final phase, 35 constituencies in four districts will witness polling on April 29,” he said.
The ECI has appointed two special police observers — Vivek Dubey and MK Das — for West Bengal.
With the announcement of the election schedule, the Model Code of Conduct has come into force in the state. (ANI)

Continue Reading

News

Delhi HC adjourns hearing on plea seeking court-monitored probe into farmer’s death during R-Day tractor rally

Published

on

By

New Delhi [India], February 26 (ANI): The Delhi High Court on Thursday adjourned the matter till March 4 on a plea seeking court-monitored probe into the death of a farmer Navreet Singh, who died during the tractor rally on January 26 in the national capital.
The family had approached the Delhi High Court and raised several questions on the death and sought a post mortem video and X-ray report of the deceased.
A single-judge bench of Justice Yogesh Khanna deferred the matter for March 4 after the respondent counsel sought adjournment.
The Delhi police have earlier informed the Delhi High Court that a first information report (FIR) has been registered in the death of Singh who had died allegedly due to the overturning of a tractor during the tractors rally on Republic day.
The plea has sought a thorough and independent court-monitored probe into the alleged incident. It alleges the cause of death to be bullet injury but, according to the Delhi Police, Singh died in the accident after the tractor he was driving overturned after ramming into a barricade near ITO in Delhi.
Lawyer for petitioner Advocate Vrinda Grover submitted that various medical/ forensic experts who have reviewed the description of injuries in the post mortem report have independently made statements reported by various media houses, opining that the injuries are consistent with firearm /gunshot wounds and that the said injuries could not have resulted from the tractor overturning, as has been repeatedly asserted and announced by the Delhi police including senior officers, the Commissioner of Police and Deputy Commissioner of Police.
The plea moved by the grandfather of the deceased has stated that he has sufficient “reason to mistrust and not accept the hasty, unverified and self-serving conclusion of the Delhi Police, which has publicly and without any investigation stated that the death of his grandson was a motor vehicle accident'”
The Delhi Police had released CCTV footage showing the farmer’s tractor overturning after ramming into barricades at ITO.
Protesters broke barricades to enter New Delhi and clashed with police in several parts of the national capital during the January 26 ‘tractor rally’ protest organised by farmers.
The demonstrators also had entered the iconic Mughal era monument Red Fort and unfurled their flags from its ramparts.
Farmers have been protesting on the different borders of the national capital since November 26 last year against the three newly enacted farm laws: Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; the Farmers Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and farm Services Act 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020. (ANI)

Continue Reading

Trending