New Delhi [India], February 9 (ANI): Congress MP Ghulam Nabi Azad during his retirement speech in Rajya Sabha on Tuesday summed up his more than four-decade-old political career in few Urdu couplets and a brief speech.
“I would like to depart with only a few words using a few couplets. A ten-hour speech can be summed up in merely two couplets by a poet. And I would like to take that approach. To express my thoughts on my entire political career would be a tough task to perform,” Azad said in Rajya Sabha.
Going back to the early days of partition, the senior Congress leader said, “I am among those fortunate people who never went to Pakistan. When I read about circumstances in Pakistan, I feel proud to be a Hindustani Muslim.”
“If any Muslim should feel proud in the world, it should be the Indian Muslim. Over the years, we have seen how Muslims countries from Afghanistan Iraq getting destroyed. There are no Hindus or Christians there — they are fighting amongst themselves,” he added.
Prior to this, Rajya Sabha witnessed emotional scenes as Prime Minister Narendra Modi recalled the contribution of Ghulam Nabi Azad to the country, the House and also his party.
An emotional Prime Minister Modi bid adieu to Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is retiring from the House and recalled his long association with the senior leader.
Lauding the senior Congress leader’s contribution to the causes dear to him, the Prime Minister said, “The person who will replace Ghulam Nabi ji (as Leader of Opposition) will have difficulty matching his work because he was not only concerned about his party but also about the country and the House.”
Almost teary-eyed, the Prime Minister recalled an incident where Azad’s personal intervention led to the return of survivors and corpses of Gujarat residents who had faced a terrorist attack in Jammu and Kashmir. (ANI)
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NITI Aayog Vice Chairman meets Uttarakhand CM
Dehradun (Uttarakhand) [India], February 27 (ANI): Chief Minister Trivendra Rawat on Saturday urged NITI Aayog Vice-Chairman Dr Rajiv Kumar to discuss several issues related to Uttarakhand.
The Chief Minister said necessary formalities required for forest clearance should be simplified.
He also gave information about the disaster in the Joshimath area, rescue and relief operations.
Kumar also suggested building a monitoring cell for Sustainable Development Goals in the state.
He said that a study will be conducted to use international-level technology for early warning systems in the state. (ANI)
Congress leader Raj Babbar asserts G-23 is Gandhi 23
Jammu (Jammu and Kashmir) [India], February 27 (ANI): Congress leader Raj Babbar on Saturday said that G-23 (or the group of 23 dissenting leaders) is Gandhi 23 and wants the party to be strong.
“People say ‘G23’, I say Gandhi 23. With the belief, resolve and thinking of Mahatma Gandhi, this nation’s law and Constitution was formed. The Congress will take these forward,” Babbar said at ‘Shanti Sammelan’ in Jammu.
Former Uttar Pradesh Congress chief Raj Babbar also said G-23 wants Congress to be “strong.”
Meanwhile, Congress leader Anand Sharma said that nobody has the right to declare whether G-23 leaders are part of Congress or not.
“All of us have covered a long distance to reach where we’re today. I have not given anyone the right to declare whether we are people of Congress or not. Nobody has that right. We will build the party and strengthen it,” he said.
Raj Babbar along with Kapil Sibal, Anand Sharma, Bhupinder Singh Hooda and Vivek Tankha are among other Congress leaders who were present at the event organised by former Rajya Sabha MP Ghulam Nabi Azad.
Azad is the senior-most member among the 23 leaders, who had expressed dissent at the functioning of the Congress party and had written a letter to Sonia Gandhi in August last year.
The Shanti Sammelan event has been organised days after Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s “North-South” remark, which has led to a controversy over the past few days. The event is being held at a time when Rahul Gandhi is campaigning in Tamil Nadu.
Senior Congress leaders Kapil Sibal and Anand Sharma stated that the G-23 or the group of 23 dissenting leaders are seeing the Congress party “getting weaker” and are raising their voice for the betterment of the party.
“The truth is that we see Congress party getting weak. That is why we have gathered here. We had gathered together earlier too and we have to strengthen the party together,” Sibal said.
Anand Sharma who addressed the Shanti Sammelan said that “Congress has weakened in the last decade.”
“Our voice is for the betterment of the party. It should be strengthened everywhere once again. The new generation should connect (to party). We have seen good days of Congress. We do not want to see it weakening as we become older,” he said.
Last year in August, G-23 leaders through a letter to interim Congress president Sonia Gandhi expressed their discontent and urged the top leadership of Congress to bring immediate reforms, including organisational elections from the grass-roots to the Congress Working Committee (CWC) level. (ANI)
‘Handlers from Pakistan, Dubai behind conspiracy to kill Kashmiri activist in Delhi’
New Delhi [India], February 27 (ANI): Handlers from Pakistan and Dubai hatched the conspiracy to kill Kashmiri activist Sushil Pandit and the contract killers arrested by Delhi Police on Saturday were acting on the behest of these handlers, said Delhi Police sources.
According to the police, the conspiracy to kill Sushil Pandit has been hatched in Pakistan and Dubai. On investigation, it was found that a person from Pakistan had called a person namely Deepak alias King in Dubai. Deepak allegedly gave the contract of killing Sushil Pandit to Prince who is lodged in a Punjab jail. Further, Prince has chosen Sukhvinder and Lakhan to commit the crime.
As per police sources, the pistols recovered from the arrested persons carry a ‘star’ mark which is found in pistols made in Pakistan. As the magazine of the Pakistan-made pistol did not fit correctly, the accused contacted their handlers again. They were then told to reach Rajnagar Extension in Ghaziabad to collect different arms.
The handers told Sukhvinder and Lakhan to reiki the Qutub Institutional area and the time to kill Sushil Pandit would be intimated later. All the conversations between the conspirators from Dubai, Pakistan, Punjab and Delhi have been made through the Signal Messaging application.
Earlier today, Delhi Police arrested two persons for allegedly conspiring to kill the activist in the national capital.
Briefing the media persons, Ingit Pratap Singh, DCP South West said, “Staff of RK Puram Police station has arrested two criminals Sukhvinder Singh (25) and Lakhan (21), both are from Kotkapura village of Faridkot in Punjab. They were sent to Delhi on the behest of Price alias Tuti. During the investigation, it was found that Price is a childhood friend of Lakhan.”
“They were promised Rs 10 lakh each if they kill Sushil Pandit who is a human rights activist and CEO of Hive Communication India PVT LTD. Four pistols including two country-made and two foreign-made, 4 live cartridges, and one mobile phone containing photographs of Sushil Pandit were recovered from them. These were provided to them by Prince. It is found that Prince has been facing a murder trial in Punjab,” added the DCP.
According to police, the accused were nabbed on secret information while they were on the lookout for rented accommodation in South West Delhi. After the arrest, the accused disclosed the entire conspiracy to the police. Cases have been registered under relevant sections.
Considering the nature of the case and the possibility of involvement of foreign hands, the case has been transferred to the Special Cell of Delhi Police. (ANI)
Rajnath Singh graces wedding ceremony of doctor whose education he had financed
Ghazipur (Uttar Pradesh) [India], February 27 (ANI): Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday attended the wedding ceremony of Doctor Brijendra whose education he had financed when he was an impoverished and talented child years ago.
Back in 2002, when Rajnath Singh was the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, he had adopted Brijendra. Today, after nearly two decades, Defence Minister attended Brijendra’s wedding as a father figure.
“I took the responsibility for his education when I was Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. I am happy he is a doctor today,” said Union Minister. Meanwhile, an elated Dr Brijendra said, “It is unexpected. I am happy.”
Brijendra, who has since come a long way, is currently a physician at Gosaiganj Community Health Center, in Faizabad, Ayodhya.
Dr Brijendra and his wife were grateful for Rajnath Singh’s attendance, saying that “Defence Minister has come here in spite of a busy schedule.”
Rajnath Singh, who was there at the event, took part in several wedding rituals and blessed both Brijendra and his wife. Rajnath Singh said that people should help poor and meritorious children by adopting them.
“When I was the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, I took up the responsibility of the education of a child. That child became a doctor after studying and writing exams. Today, I attended the wedding ceremony of the same Dr Brijendra at his home and offered him my best wishes. It is definitely a moment of great satisfaction and joy for me,” Defence Minister tweeted.
Besides Rajnath Singh, Union Minister of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Mahendra Nath Pandey was also present on the occasion. (ANI)
Goa Assembly schedule exposes Sawant govt’s motive to avoid questions on important issues: Digambar Kamat
Margao (Goa) [India], February 27 (ANI): Leader of Opposition of Goa Legislative Assembly Digambar Kamat on Saturday slammed Chief Minister Pramod Sawant-led government alleging that the schedule of the state Assembly session is fixed with the ulterior motive to avoid questions on several important issues.
“The Schedule of the thirteen days Goa Legislative Assembly Session commencing on March 24 is fixed with the ulterior motive to avoid questions on the core issues like Mhadei, Coal Transportation, Railway Double Tracking, Three Linear Projects and Coastal Zone Management Plan,” said Kamat.
As per the revised schedule declared by the Legislature Secretariat on Friday, only two days are allotted for Question Hour of the key departments like Environment and Climate Change, Ports, Water Resource, Power, Public Health, River Navigation, Tourism, Waste Management, Industries, Social Welfare and others.
Kamat claimed that the government is afraid to face questions from the Opposition on contentious issues like Mhadei, Railway double tracking, Coastal Zone Management Plan, effect of major ports bill passed by the BJP government at the Centre, marina project at Nauxi, failure of the government on garbage management.
“The tabling of the Legislative Assembly Questions (LAQ’S) is fixed between March 1 to March 17. This is the time when the MLA’S will remain busy with the canvassing of Municipal Elections and Zilla Panchayat by-polls which are scheduled on March 20. This is an attempt by the BJP Government to keep the Opposition MLA’S engaged in election campaigning and divert their attention from tabling questions which will ultimately cause embarrassment to the government and expose their failures and lies,” he said. (ANI)
1971 India-Pak war: Swarnim Vijay Varsh victory flame received at Jalahalli Air Force Station
Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], February 27 (ANI): As part of ‘Swarnim Vijay Varsh’ celebration commemorating 50 years of the 1971 war triumph against Pakistan, the victory flame was received on Saturday at Air Force Station Jalahalli in Bengaluru.
The Victory Flame was lit by the Prime Minister in National War Memorial in New Delhi on December 16 last year.
As per an official release, the chief guest on the occasion former Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Fali Homi Major, presented souvenirs to the war heroes and their next of kin.
As a mark of gratitude to the war veterans, soil was collected from their residences and this will be used for tree plantation at the National War Memorial.
Air Marshal HB Rajaram, PVSM, AVSM, VSM (Retd.), Air Marshal SP Singh, PVSM, AVSM, VM (Retd.), Air Vice Marshal PJ Walia Senior Officer-in-Charge Administration Headquarters Training Command and other distinguished guests and air veterans were present at the occasion. (ANI)
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