Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], February 23 (ANI): Ahead of state Assembly elections in several states, Union Minister and senior BJP leader Pralhad Joshi has accused Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and Left parties of hypocrisy, saying that both are friends in West Bengal and Tamil Nadu but are fighting against each other in Kerala.
“Left Democratic Front and United Democratic Front are fighting in Kerala. ‘Kushti’ in Kerala, ‘dosti’ in Delhi and other places. See the hypocrisy of these parties. TMC chief Mamata Banerjee supporting Congress in Delhi but not doing the same in West Bengal as Congress has become a liability on various regional parties,” Pralhad Joshi told reporters at a press conference in Thiruvananthapuram.
Further slamming the Left parties and Congress, the Union Minister said, “Hypocrisy of the Left is that they are supporting Congress in Delhi, West Bengal. They (Congress and Left) are friends in West Bengal, Tamil Nadu also. You don’t want to believe Politburo in Kerala but you choose to do in West Bengal: I ask Rahul Gandhi do you believe in democracy or hypocrisy.”
Politics is not just for grabbing power and having “some alliance here and some alliance there,” Joshi questioned Rahul Gandhi to clarify his position on why the party has a different alliance in different states.
The Union Minister also said, “Rahul Gandhi is trying to become ‘actor on tractor’. If you are in favour of the Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC), then, why is there no APMC in Kerala? Rahul Gandhi, your government in Punjab has brought a law under which a farmer who breaks the agreement he could be sent to jail.”
Ahead of the upcoming Assembly polls in several states, Joshi emphasised that “BJP will form the government in Bengal. In Tamil Nadu, NDA will come back. In Puducherry, I am assuring you today that in South India, it will be the second government of the BJP. In Kerala, the momentum has started. Very hugely we are going to gain and there will be many surprises.”
On the issue of the Sabrimala temple issue, the BJP leader said, “Only for the sake of votes, they are trying to raise the Sabrimala issue today. They did not seriously agitate and did not educate Rahul Gandhi, what is the sentiment of the people. They are only trying to woo the Muslim community for their votes.”
This press conference comes ahead of the Assembly elections slated for Kerala, West Bengal, Assam, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. (ANI)
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YSRCP candidates file nominations for legislative council elections
Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh) [India], March 5 (ANI) Six Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party (YSRCP) candidates for MLC elections under MLA quota filed nominations on Thursday in Amaravati.
Challa Bhageeratha Reddy, Balli Kalyana Chakravarti, C Ramachandraiah, Mohammad Iqbal, Duvvada Srinivas and Karimunnisa have filed nominations yesterday here.
The election is necessitated as four members are retiring from the state legislative council on March 29 who includes Tippeswamy, Sandhya Rani, V V Chowdary and Mohammad Iqbal.
One seat has become vacant as Pilli Subhash Chandra Bose resigned from the council and was elected to Rajya Sabha recently. Another seat became vacant due to the death of MLC Challa Ramakrishna Reddy.
Before filing the nominations, the candidates have met with the Chief Minister and party president YS Jaganmohan Reddy at his camp office in Amaravati.
The Chief Minister handed over the B Forms to the candidates. Later, they filed nominations at the state assembly on the last date (March 4).
Polling will be held for these MLC seats under the MLA quota on March 15 and counting will follow the same day.
The election for two teachers’ MLC seats will be held on March 16. However, YSRCP decided not to contest for those two berths. The party decided to leave them for teachers’ representatives only. (ANI)
NDA to hold meeting to finalise CM, constituency distribution in Puducherry: BJP
Puducherry [India], March 5 (ANI): The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) will hold a meeting to finalize the Chief Minister and constituency distribution in the forthcoming elections in Pondicherry, in two days, said BJP president V Saminathan on Thursday.
Speaking to reporters at the BJP headquarters, Saminathan said: “Union Minister McGowan had set up various working committees to expedite the work for the Pondicherry Assembly elections and that a 12-member committee headed by former minister Namasivayam had been set up to prepare the first phase election report.”
He also informed that a committee of 11 people has been formed under his leadership.
He further said that the election report will be prepared based on the wishes and views of the public.
Asking whether the NR Congress was in the alliance or not, the Bharatiya Janata Party leader said that the NR Congress was part of the NDA and that a meeting of the leaders of NDA would be held in two days on the Chief Minister and the constituency agreement.
Earlier, Union Minister McGowan and top officials were present and held consultations with BJP executives.
The Congress-led government in the UT fell before completing its five-year term under Chief Minister V Naraynawamy.
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 his resignation.
Kiran Bedi was replaced as state L-G with Telangana governor Tamilisai Soundararajan being given the additional charge of the UT.
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.
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. (ANI)
Strict action will be taken against Sharjeel Usmani, says Maha Deputy CM
Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], March 5 (ANI): Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Thursday said that strict action will be taken against former Aligarh Muslim University student leader Sharjeel Usmani, who is accused of hurting religious sentiments with his comments at the Elgar Parishad in Pune in January.
“Strict action will be taken against Sharjeel Usmani and those who have committed the crime. Nobody will be spared. We have filed a case against him (in Elgar Parishad matter) and police are investigating the matter. What we know is that he is absconding and is in Uttar Pradesh,” said Pawar in the state Assembly session.
on February 2, Pune City Police registered an FIR against former AMU student Sharjeel Usmani for a speech he delivered at an Elgar Parishad event here.
The complaint was filed by Pradip Gawade, Pune regional secretary of Bhartiya Janta Yuva Morcha, for allegedly hurting religious sentiments and using objectionable words against a particular community.
Usmani had attended the Elgar Parishad event organised at Pune’s Ganesh Kala Krida Manch on January 30. Soon after, a video of him allegedly using objectionable words against the Hindu community went viral and demand for stern action against him was raised. (ANI)
Goa Crime Branch seizes 10 kg Ganja in two raids over three days
Panaji (Goa) [India], March 5 (ANI): A team of Goa Crime Branch has arrested two persons in raids conducted at different locations for allegedly possessing drugs and recovered over 10 kilograms of Ganja.
According to a statement on Thursday, “Crime branch conducted a raid on March 1 and arrested Rajesh, 38, with over five kg Ganja in Margao.”
In another raid, on March 4, the team arrested Pandurang Pakhare, 47 with over four kg Ganja at Mapusa Bus Stand.
During the investigation, accused Rajesh admitted that he was going to supply the drugs in South Goa, while the other confessed that the drugs were to be supplied in North Goa.
Two separate FIRs have been registered. Further investigation in both cases is underway, the police said in the statement. (ANI)
Transgender delegation meets Maha Governor, seeks fulfilment of their fundamental rights
Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], March 5 (ANI): A delegation of the transgender community on Thursday met Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari, apprising him about the denial of their fundamental rights and the exploitation faced by the community during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have met the governor for our basic demands of food, clothes and housing, our fundamental rights and the exploitation faced by the community during the lockdown,” Salma Khan, a member of the organisation Kinner Maa Ek Samajik Sanstha, told ANI.
Khan said a board has already formed in the state in 2020, regarding the issues, but has not been activated. “The governor assured us for of a solution to our issues,” she added.
Salma also said that her organisation has filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) on March 1 over non-implementation of the 2014 Supreme Court’s order.
“Supreme Court’s judgment in 2014 has not been implemented in State. Governor assured us that he will hold talks with concerned officers and resolve issues,” she said. (ANI)
TMC enumerates work done for tea workers’ welfare
By Tarak Sarkar
Siliguri (West Bengal) [India], March 5 (ANI): Ahead of the assembly polls, the Trinamool Congress enumerated the measures it had taken for the welfare of tea workers, but other political parties contradicted these claims.
Aloke Chakraborty, Corninator, North Bengal, INTTUC, labour wing of the TMC said: “The daily wages of the tea workers have been increased from Rs 67 to Rs 202. The government has introduced Cha Sundari Project under which workers got Pucca houses. It has also provided free ration up to June 2021. The pension of Rs 1,000 under the Joy Johar Scheme for the tribal has been implemented.
However, the opposition parties in the state claimed that the state government has done nothing for tea workers.
“The hike in wages of teas workers would not benefit them. The state government yet to implement the long-pending minimum wages for them,” said Saman Phatak, former Member of Parliament and CITU Darjeeling secretary.
Praveen Agarwal, president, Siliguri district committee said that the state government did not allow the Centre to work for tea workers. But if they form government in West Bengal, they would address the problems of the tea garden workers.
On the other hand, the tea garden workers expressed their disappointment, saying that political parties promise a lot before elections, but after that, they become invisible.
West Bengal Assembly elections will be held in eight phases starting from March 27 with the final round of voting taking place on April 29. The counting of votes will take place on May 2.
The tea garden is the backbone of North Bengal’s industry. It also brings natural beauty to the region.
The lush green tea fields along the slopes and the foothills of the Himalayas are a centre of attraction to people around the world. It is the largest private-sector employer with mostly woman and tribal people depends on their livelihood directly or indirectly in the industry.
North Bengal has more than 400 tea gardens in Darjeeling, Terai and Dooars region. At least five lakh people are directly or indirectly connected with the industry. But, during the past decade the tea industry has been facing a crisis. (ANI)
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