BJP, JD-U & LJP will fight Bihar elections under Nitish: Nadda - The Daily Guardian
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BJP, JD-U & LJP will fight Bihar elections under Nitish: Nadda

BJP president J.P. Nadda’s statement comes at a time when both the LJP and the JD-U are caught in a bitter war of words which many see as grandstanding for a bigger slice of seats in the coming Assembly elections.

Brijesh Pandey

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All three NDA parties—BJP JD-U and LJP—will fight the Assembly elections in Bihar together and it will be under the leadership of CM Nitish Kumar, said BJP national president J.P. Nadda while addressing the state executive through video conference. Expressing confidence that the NDA will emerge victorious, Nadda called opposition a spent force.

This comes at a time when both the LJP and the JD-U are caught in a bitter war of words which many believe as grandstanding for a bigger slice of candidates. Asking his partymen to not waste time commenting on their political opponents, Nadda said that the Opposition is a spent force not only in Bihar but also in other states. “Today the Opposition has no vision and no ideology. They are only driven by their own agenda of low petty politics,” he said.

Praising the work done by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Nadda also said that the Bihar government has also done good work in dealing with Covid-19 and today the recovery rate in Bihar is around 73 percent. It has also done good work in door-to-door screening and is testing one lakh people every day. He also told his partymen that the BJP will not only fight in those seats where there are BJP candidates but will also work at booth levels and ensure victory for their allied partners as well. He asked his party workers to follow the guidelines issued by the WHO and organise small meetings and focus on door to door meetings.

Explaining about the kind of packages that has been given by the Modi government to the state of Bihar, he asked BJP workers to go to people and explain to them about the kind of work that has been done by them. Nadda also spoke about how PM Modi had given a package of Rs1,70,000 crore as the lockdown was announced. He also talked about the Rs 50,000 crore Gareeb Rojgar Abhiyan which was started from Bihar only. This programme includes 32 districts of Bihar.

 The BJP president is likely to go to Bihar on 28 August while Devendra Fadnavis is likely to visit the state on Monday. This virtual meeting of Nadda was also attended by Central ninisters Ravi Shankar Prasad, R.K. Singh, Giriraj Singh, Ashwani Choubey and MoS Nityanand Rai.

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SC stays HC order restraining amendment to AIADMK’s bylaws

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The Supreme Court on Wednesday stayed the 23 June division bench order of the Madras High Court order that had restrained the AIADMK General Council from amending the party bylaws during its meeting.

A vacation bench of Justices Dinesh Maheshwari and Krishna Murari issued notice to the O. Panneerselvam (OPS) camp and asked the parties to file their affidavit within two weeks. The bench observed that Courts cannot interfere with the inner functioning of a political party. The apex court also clarified that the 11 July General Council can proceed in accordance with the law.

“Notice issued to respondents, returnable in two weeks. Given facts and circumstances of the case and subject matter of litigation and High Court orders, we considered apt that operation and effect of order 23 June, shall remain stayed,” the bench stated in its order.

The apex court was hearing the plea filed by AIADMK leader Edappadi K. Palaniswami (EPS) against the High Court order.

Senior advocate C.S. Vaidyanathan for EPS told the bench that the division bench held an extraordinary sitting at midnight at the residence of one of the judges and passed an order at 4 am to restrain the General Council from passing any resolutions. “This amounted to judicial interference with the internal functioning of a political party,” he said, adding that as far as interference in the internal management of political parties is concerned High Court’s jurisdiction is limited.

He submitted, “The attempt is to stop the internal democracy of the party by a person who does not have the support of majority members.”

The bench also observed that the direction of the division bench amounts to the court telling the party how it should function. “Can such an order be passed even at the final decree stage, let alone the interim stage?” it asked.

Senior advocate Maninder Singh appearing for OPS group opposed the plea of EPS saying coordinator, and joint coordinator posts have to be there till September 2022. “From 2017 there is a system. This system has worked for the last five years. It became a problem because this person now wants to throw away joint leadership for unitary leadership,” Singh said. 

The bench said, “Who wants to do what within the party forum is essentially within that compact only. Is it our jurisdiction? These things have to be worked out internally. You have to work out all your friendship and dispute at the platform of…” 

What’s bothering us is that you are part of the General Council, decide everything there, why in a judicial forum, asked the bench to the counsels.

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MVA GOVERNMENT WAS INDECISIVE ON DAWOOD ISSUE, ALLEGES CM SHINDE

MVA GOVERNMENT WAS INDECISIVE ON DAWOOD ISSUE, ALLEGES CM SHINDE

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Noting that there must be “big reason” for 50 MLAs to leave a ruling alliance, Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Wednesday said that the previous MVA government which had Congress and Shiv Sena as constituents could not take a decision when matters concerning Hindutva or Veer Savarkar or that on Mumbai blasts and underworld don Dawood Ibrahim came up.

In an exclusive interview with ANI, Shinde said, “Shiv Sena, BJP contested 2019 assembly elections together but the government was formed with Congress, NCP. Due to this, whenever issues of Hindutva came up, matters relating to Savarkar came up, Mumbai blast issue came up, Dawood Ibrahim issue came up and other issues when (these) came, we were unable to take a decision.” He was referring to Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader and former Maharashtra Minister Nawab Malik who was arrested by the ED in February this year in connection with a money-laundering probe linked to the activities of fugitive gangster Dawood and his aides.

Uddhav Thackeray earlier referred to the incident when in the Assembly Devendra Fadnavis asked Shinde to stop talking. “But how will it stop. The brakes of the autorickshaw failed. Earlier, the BJP used to call the MVA government a three-wheeler government but now the person who drives a three-wheeler is running the government,” Uddhav had said.

To this, Shinde gave an appropriate reply, “(Auto) rickshaw has left the Mercedes behind because this government is for common people, this is a government to give justice to every section. We will perform in a way that every constituent, everyone feels it is my government, it will work for me. This will be the difference.”

He said they had decided to take further “Hindu Hriday Samrat Balasaheb Thackeray’s ideology. “We have decided to take our Hindu Hriday Samrat Balasaheb Thackeray’s Hindutva ideology, his role further. If 50 MLAs take such a step, then there must be a big reason for it. Nobody takes such a big decision for small reason. Even a corporator does not take such a decision. Why did 50 MLAs take such a decision? There was a need to think about this,” Shinde said. He also said that “they are not doing anything illegal” and have followed all constitutional steps for the formation of new government in the state.

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Bring mindfulness to the workplace

High-quality connections are shown to improve individual functioning, and positively affect group outcomes, such as psychological safety and trust.

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The real payoffs emerge when an individual’s mindfulness is translated into mindful interactions and relationships, says a new study. Such interactions infused with intentionality, compassion and presence can bring about more harmonious and healthy organizations.

“An understanding of how individuals bring mindfulness with them to work, and how these practices may contribute to interaction and relationship quality, is especially relevant as work landscapes are ever-changing and interdependence is increasingly becoming the norm,” said Christopher S. Reina, PhD, an associate professor of management and entrepreneurship in the VCU School of Business.

 In the study “Your Presence is Requested: Mindfulness Infusion in Workplace Interactions and Relationships,” which was published in Organization Science, Reina and management professors Glen E. Kreiner, PhD, of the University of Utah; Alexandra Rheinhardt, PhD, of the University of Connecticut; and Christine

A. Mihelcic of the University of Richmond explores how individuals bring mindfulness to work and how it infuses their workplace interactions. These practices may be formal, such as engaging in a mindful pause before beginning a meeting, or informal, such as listening to someone with a high level of attention.

The qualitative study draws on the experiences of actual leaders to explain how they bring mindfulness into the workplace. Primary data sources included interviews and on-site participant observation. The researchers conducted 30 formal interviews with managers, professionals and consultants who practice mindfulness in the workplace and more than 50 informal interviews with a wide variety of individuals who apply mindfulness principles at work.

“Interestingly, interviewees noted how other individuals around them had noticed the emotional effects of their mindful behaviours on interactions and relationships,” Reina said. “We found initial evidence that our interviewees› efforts toward bringing their mindfulness into the workplace were seen by their colleagues as having a positive effect.”

High-quality connections are shown to improve individual functioning, and positively affect group outcomes, such as psychological safety and trust.

In addition to mindfulness arising within an interaction, the study also found that mindfulness practices could be used to set individuals up for success in future interactions, such as when preparing for a difficult or important conversation.

“Mindfulness reminds us that our thoughts and emotions are complex,” Reina said. “They are contextualized by prior events experienced within a social environment, and within this social environment, individuals must be aware of both their own and others› thoughts and emotions in order to navigate these complexities with skill and compassion.”

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THE TURNING POINT IN THE CHEESE STORY

Most Indians have unquestioningly accepted that cheese, much like many other goodies, was brought to India by the Portuguese or Dutch as Hindus considered curdling milk as inauspicious.

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Long ago, before the dawn of the selfie age, cameramen used to instruct the group being photographed to say ‘cheese’ to make the subject’s lips break into a forced happy smile. That was the closest contact that many Indians made with edible cheese. Even those who were anglicized and liked their sandwiches with slices of cheese were restricted to processed cheddar that came in small round tins. This was the stuff that was grated and spread over macaroni and baked vegetables (to melt in the oven).

However, there always has been a minuscule minority of cheese snobs who talked of other cheeses, more expensive and exotic. French blue cheese like gorgonzola (that had blue veins), Roquefort, Gruyere and harder cheeses like edam, gouda, parmesan, and the rest. They remembered nostalgically when they could enjoy to their heart’s content, different varieties of cheese, with crackers at breakfast or opt for the non-sweet dessert course of a cheese platter post-dinner.

It was not only the French cheeses but the Swiss cheeses with holes that had made themselves familiar to the audience of comic-reading kids. Wedges of Swiss cheese were encountered more often on the TV screens where Jerry the mouse would be seen scheming to steal cheese from the mouse trap set by his arch-nemesis Tom on the dining table. Of course, in classier fine dining restaurants, the ‘continental’ chefs took delight in showing off their skills with tabletop fondue cooking. Feta cheese made with a strictly prescribed mixture of ewe and goat milk is increasingly popular with health-conscious salad eaters. Non-dairy cheeses prepared with oil seeds have been created for the increasing tribe of vegans.

For the majority of Indians, cheese has meant paneer (aka cottage cheese often confused with cream cheese). It is only in recent years that Indians have also tasted cheesecakes and other varieties of cheese traditionally made in India in Himachal Pradesh or among the Parsi communities like (Kalari and ‘Topi wala’ cheese). Chenapod is a traditional baked cheesecake in Odisha that has for centuries been offered to Lord Jagannath at Puri.

Most Indians have unquestioningly accepted that cheese, much like many other goodies, was brought to India by the Portuguese or Dutch as Hindus considered curdling milk as inauspicious.

It is very difficult to concede the claim that cheeses were unknown to Indians before the advent of Europeans. How on Earth can anyone explain a Bhutanese dish like Ema Datshi (molten cheese and chilis) hidden in the hard-to-reach heart of the Himalayas was terra incognita till the 1960s. 

It remained forbidden to ordinary travellers and traders for decades after that. Obviously, the cheese made with Yak milk and highly pungent local chilis owes nothing to the much-hyped Columbian exchange. Another cheese that has traditionally been prepared and relished from Yak milk all the way from Ladakh to Arunachal Pradesh is called Churpi. It is a hard toffee-like substance that keeps the mouth moist and the jaws working. Even if one keeps Chenna out of this controversy other Indian cheeses like kalari from Himachal Pradesh can legitimately claim to be a child of this soil as perhaps can the Kashmiri Chaman. Other Indian cheeses like Bandel and Topi Wala Cheese are certainly adaptations and improvisations of the French or the Dutch Cheese theme.

Cheese is widely used in Mediterranean, Central Asian and Turkish cuisine. Milk was curdled in leather bags and the cheese so obtained was pressed to drain off moisture, matured, smoked and flavoured.

A turning point in the cheese story came in India when western fast food entered India and proliferated in all corners of the subcontinent with great speed. Mcdonalds’ was the first chain to insist on quality standards for the cheese supplied to them. They were large enough a buyer for the cheese makers in India to clean up their act and strive to become the chief vendor.

The same happened when Pizzas — Pizza Hut, Pizza King and Dominos — lured the younger generation of Indians with seductive extra-cheesy toppings and cheese-filled crusts around the rim. Mozzarella came on its own and Amul the legendary milk cooperative started producing it. Likewise when Italian pastas of different sizes shapes and flavours were included in the menus of speciality restaurants drizzling of hard Parmesan became another acquired taste.

In recent years, with growing affluence among the urban elite cheeses like wines, have become aspirational. They are symbols of an exclusive exotic delight to the masses – privileges of like, special status symbols. Many Indians, past middle age suddenly are drawn towards golf and cigars. A platter of cheese to be paired with wines or a cheese platter as an option for dessert is a clearly discernible emerging trend.

It is on this cheese platter that one finds the more expensive and the more exotic sharp smelling and sharp-tasting French blue cheeses. However, few Indians have the stomach to try the maggot-infested Casu martzu or the crawling cheese from the Italian island of Sardinia. Because the larvae in the cheese can launch themselves up up to 6 inches when disturbed, diners have to hold their hands above the cheese to prevent the maggots from leaping away!

The turn of the century witnessed the advent of the artisanal cheese makers, mostly in hill stations or in areas where Europeans have settled for generations like Kalimpong, Pondicherry, Ooty and Bhimtal. Some like Mansoor Khan, director of Bollywood hits like Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak took a break to pursue their passion. Khan moved to Coonoor in 2003, to start making Gouda, Colby, and other cheeses. In Pune, ABC Farms’ has been producing versions of Gorgonzola, Cheddar and mozzarella for over three decades now. They supply tonnes of cheese a month, to leading five-star hotels in Mumbai and Pune.

The Indian Cheese story continues to be written.

Pushpesh Pant is an Indian academic, food critic and historian.

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Om Prakash Chautala moves Delhi HC challenging sentencing by trial court

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Former Haryana Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala has moved to the Delhi High Court challenging the order of a trial court which sent him to four years of imprisonment in a disproportionate assets (DA) case.

Advocate Harsh Sharma on Tuesday confirmed that the appeal has been moved to the High Court challenging a trial court order of conviction and order of sentence against Chautala. On 27 May, the Rouse Avenue Court of Delhi ordered four years of imprisonment to Chautala. The Court had also ordered to confiscate four properties of him and also imposed a fine of Rs 50 lakh.

While passing the order, CBI Judge Vikas Dhull had also ordered to send Chautala in the custody of Tihar Jail.

During the argument, Chautala physically appeared and remained present in the courtroom. Appearing for Chautala, Advocate Harsh Sharma cited medical grounds for less punishment and submitted that “I, (OP Chautala), have been infected with polio since birth and I am partially disabled.”

CBI’s Special Public Prosecutor Ajay Gupta had opposed the submissions of Chautala’s lawyer for a grant of concession on the grounds of ill-health and age.

CBI had urged the court that “maximum punishment shall be given as it would send a message to the society.” “The person, in this case, is a public figure and giving minimum punishment would send a wrong message. He is not having clean antecedents. It is the second case, in which he has been convicted,” CBI said.

Special Judge (PC Act) Vikas Dhull on 21 May, convicted Chautala and said the accused had failed to satisfactorily account for such dis-proportionality by proving his source of income or means by way of which, he acquired assets during this period.

“Hence, accused Om Prakash Chautala is convicted for the offence under Section 13(1)(e) read with 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988. Put up 26 May 2022 at 10.00 AM for arguments on the point of sentence,” said the court.

According to the CBI’s FIR, accused Chautala, while functioning as Chief Minister of Haryana during the period from 24 July 1999, to 5 March 2005, in collusion with his family members and others, accumulated assets, immovable and movable, disproportionate to his known lawful sources of income, in his name, in the names of his family members and others to the extent of Rs 1,467 crores.

The FIR further stated that the accused accumulated enormous wealth and invested the same throughout the country in the shape of thousands of acres of land, multi complexes, palatial residential houses, hotels, farmhouses, business agencies, petrol pumps and other investments apart from investments in foreign countries.

The FIR also stated that 43 immovable properties in all, apart from cash and jewellery were accumulated. Apart from 43 alleged properties listed in the FIR, additional properties were also suspected to be of the accused family.

An investigation with regard to additional properties was also conducted for ascertaining the link of the accused family with the said properties.

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NEWLY INDUCTED PUNJAB MINISTERS: JOURAMAJRA GETS HEALTH, MAAN GETS TOURISM

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Chetan Singh Jauramajra is the new Health Minister of Punjab after sacking Dr Vijay Singla out of cabinet due to the graft charges against him. All ministers got portfolios in Punjab Tuesday. The portfolios of some old ministers have also been changed. The total number of ministers including the Chief Minister, in the Punjab government, has now increased to 15. The new ministers include Aman Arora, who was elected MLA for the second time in Sunam, Dr Indervir Singh Nijjar, MLA from Amritsar South, MLA from Gurharsahai, Fauja Singh Sarri, MLA from Samana, Chetan Singh Jauramajra, and woman MLA from Kharad, Anmol Gagan Mann are included. Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal has congratulated all the new ministers who have joined the Punjab cabinet.

The AAP has reposed more confidence in the MLAs who won the elections for the first time. After Finance Minister Harpal Cheema and Education Minister Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer, Aman Arora is the only minister who has won the election twice in a row. Whereas apart from CM Bhagwant Mann, 11 ministers have become MLAs for the first time.

WHO GOT WHICH DEPARTMENT

• Harpal Singh: Finance Planning, Program Implementation, Excise and Taxation

• Dr Baljit Kaur: Social Justice, Empowerment and Minorities, Social Security, Women and Child Development

• Harbhajan Singh: Public Works, Power

• Lal Chand: Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs, Forests, Wildlife

• Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer: Governance Reforms, Printing and Stationery, Science Technology and Environment, Sports and Youth Services, Higher Education

• Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal: Rural Development, NRI Affairs, Agriculture and Farmers Welfare

• Laljit Bhullar: Transport, Animal Husbandry, Fisheries and Dairy Development

• Bram Shankar: Revenue, Rehabilitation and Disaster Management, Water Supply and Sanitation

• Harjot Singh Bains: Water Resources, Mines and Geology, Prisons, School

• Aman Arora: Department of Information and Public Relations, New and Renewable Energy Resources, Housing and Urban Development

• Dr Indervir Singh Nijjar: Local Bodies, Parliamentary Affairs, Conservation of Land and Water, Administrative Reforms

• Fauza Singh: Freedom Fighter, Defense Services Welfare, Food Processing, Horticulture

• Chetan Singh Jauramajra: Health and Family Welfare, Medical Education and Research, Elections

• Anmol Gagan Maan: Tourism and Culture Work, Investment Promotion, Labor

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