NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday performed a bhoomi pujan to mark the symbolic launch of the new Parliament building as part of an ambitious Central Vista plan. Around 200 dignitaries, including Union Ministers, MPs, foreign envoys and religious leaders attended the function that was webcast live. Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla spoke exclusively to The Daily Guardian on the occasion of the foundation stone-laying ceremony for a new Parliament building at Central Vista being laid down in New Delhi.
Q: It’s a historic festival as PM Modi said the new Parliament would showcase self-reliant India. What do you have to say about that?
A: The new Parliament will be a beacon of hope and trust. Our citizens have increased hopes and aspira tions from their representatives, so definitely we would want a Parliament that can fulfil the hopes and aspirations of people. This new structure would, for sure, go a long way in helping achieve the goals.
Q: Questions are being raised about the need for this kind of expenditure when our economy is struggling due to the pandemic. The opposition has also raised this point multiple times. What are your views on this?
A: Covid-19 is a huge battle for all of us but the current government has made enough arrangements to deal with it as well. A pandemic cannot be the reason behind an entire country stopping or lagging, we have to move ahead. A sign of going forward is through infrastructure be it flyovers, dams, lakes or roads. In this same vein, our representatives need to have a place to properly work and enact the decisions being made to strengthen our country.
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MILKHA SINGH’S WIFE NIRMAL KAUR SUCCUMBS TO COVID
Track legend Milkha Singh’s wife Nirmal Kaur passed away at the age of 85 after battling with Covid-19 on Sunday. She had tested Covid positive in May. “We are deeply saddened to inform you that Nirmal Milkha Singh passed away after a valiant battle against Covid-19 at 4 pm today,” read a family statement. Nirmal was a former Director of Sports for Women in the Punjab Government and was also a former captain of the Indian women’s national volleyball team.
Punjab Sports Minister Rana Gurmit Singh Sodhi condoled the demise of Nirmal Milkha Singh. In a condolence message, the Sports Minister said, “I am deeply saddened to learn about the death of Nirmal Milkha Singh, which is extremely shocking and unfortunate.”
KEJRIWAL PLANS BIG GUJARAT PUSH, SAYS STATE YEARNING FOR CHANGE
The political atmosphere in Gujarat began heating up on 11 June when it was announced that a meeting of the leaders of Leuva and Kadwa Patidar would be held at Khodaldham in Kagwad, the centre of faith of Leuva Patidars. They criticised the government’s performance in Covid-19 pandemic and praised the work done by the Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi and other states during the meeting that was held on 12 June.
Amid these developments, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is coming on a one-day visit to Gujarat on the morning of 14 June. He also tweeted in Gujarati, on Sunday, that he is coming to Gujarat tomorrow. His visit is likely to bring many twists and turns in Gujarat politics.It seems the AAP has become active in Gujarat.
While the Congress has selected some leaders including the state president, BJP in-charge Bhupendra Yadav is scheduled to be on a three-day visit to Gujarat and meet MLAs on 15 June.
A day before the tour, Arvind Kejriwal tweeted in Gujarati, “Gujarat will change now. I am coming to Gujarat tomorrow. I will meet all the brothers and sisters of Gujarat”.
According to sources, Kejriwal will arrive at Ahmedabad airport at 10.30 am and will go directly to Shahibaug Circuit House. He will meet party workers. A press conference will be held at Vallabh Sadan at 11.30 am. Former journalist Isudan Gadhvi and 10 others are likely to join the AAP. The party will inaugurate its new state office at Navrangpura in the afternoon. Kejriwal’s visit is a sign of AAP’s readiness for the Gujarat Legislative Assembly. More people will get connected to make the AAP organisation stronger. He will also visit Surat. In addition to AAP corporators, he will hold meetings with local leaders and workers and also guide the upcoming Assembly elections.
On the other hand, Yadav’s visit to Gujarat is signalling a major political upheaval in the coming days. According to sources, he had a meeting with the experienced leaders and asked them about the performance of Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, working style of Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel, and state leadership of BJP state president C. R. Patil. Yadav had asked about the current situation in Gujarat and what can happen next. He may have asked about the AAP for the first time. Kejriwal’s visit can impact the local body elections.
IN A VIRAL VIDEO, CAR VANISHES AS LAND CAVES IN MUMBAI
A scary moment was caught on camera by an onlooker and it quickly went viral. As heavy rainfall continues in Mumbai, a video of a parked car suddenly being swallowed up by a sinkhole has taken social media by storm.
In the viral video, a black car was seen sinking into the ground rapidly and then quickly disappearing into a pool of muddy waters. Even as the car, which appeared to be a hatchback, was swallowed up, two other vehicles parked near it were not affected. The incident took place on Sunday at Ram Niwas society’s parking lot situated in Cama Lane in Mumbai’s Ghatkopar area. Fortunately, no one was killed or injured in the incident as no one was in the car.
Several years ago, the society had closed half the portion of the well by carrying out RCC work where they would park the vehicles. This well runs as deep as 50 feet and is nearly a hundred years old as per residents. As the video went viral — BJP leader Kirit Somaiya asked BMC, “BMC Nala Safai?” BMC responded by saying, “The corporation has nothing to do with this car accident. This is an incident in a private society in the Ghatkopar area.” The press release stated, “In this connection, it has been informed by the Emergency Management Department of the Corporation that the incident in this video has taken place on 13 June 2021 in the morning in Ghatkopar West area. Preliminary information has come to light that a car parked on the RCC was submerged in water. No one was killed or injured in the incident as no one was in the car.”
In this connection, the work of water abstraction is being coordinated by the concerned departmental office of the Municipal Corporation. Also, the concerned society has been informed to take necessary measures for safety in this place immediately.”
Meanwhile, the Traffic Police department of the Ghatkopar area said, “The RCC on this well has been washed away by rain/water today and the car parked by Pankaj Mehta on it has fallen into the well and drowned. Officers/staff of local Ghatkopar police station are present at the spot.” Nagraj Majge, Inspector of Police in-charge, Ghatkopar Traffic Department said that BMC officials after alert worked on recovery operations. Once the sinkhole is drained using pumping machines, a crane will be used to pull out the car that fell into the sealed well.
Summoning Parkash Badal in Kotkapura firing is right: Partap Bajwa
Welcoming the Special Investigation Team (SIT) decision to summon former Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on 16 June in connection with the Kotkapua Police firing case, Rajya Sabha MP from Punjab Partap Singh Bajwa has said that it is a step in the right direction. Speaking to ANI on phone, Partap Singh Bajwa said, “The summoning of Parkash Singh Badal, former Chief Minister, by the Special Investigation Team investigating the Kotkapura police firing case is a step in the right direction. In the previous investigation which was set aside by the High Court vide its judgement dated 9 April 2021, it had been observed that the previous SIT had not arrayed Badals as accused. The role of the Badals in the police firing case is that of an accused, fact known to everyone.”
“I had specifically stated that instead of challenging the judgement of the High Court before the Supreme Court, a new SIT should be constituted and the investigation should be concluded within 30 to 45 days (out of which more than 15 days have already passed).”
The Congress leader said that the need of the hour is to conduct a fair investigation wherein the role of the then Chief Minister S Parkash Singh Badal, the Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal and DGP Sumedh Singh Saini are brought out.
“They should be made to face a trial for their illegal actions of ordering the police to fire on innocent people, who were only seeking action against the culprits responsible for sacrilege by sitting on a peaceful dharna reciting Paath (prayers). Once the investigation is concluded within a month, an application must also be filed for day-to-day hearing of the case before the Trial Court at Faridkot.”
The three-member SIT was constituted on May 7 on the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court.
The high court had quashed the Punjab Police SIT’s report into the Kotkapura police firing incident in which police opened fire at people protesting against the desecration of Guru Granth Sahib in Faridkot in 2015.
Women can be priests: Tamil Nadu CM Stalin
History has changed, M.K. Stalin, the DMK party president, has been chosen as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu for the first time. After he took the oath as the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister on 7 May 2021, he also launched multiple schemes for the betterment of people. One of them is that women will be appointed as temple priests soon in Tamil Nadu.
P.K Sekar Babu, Minister of Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments said, “If women wish to work as priests in the temple, training will be provided to them and efficient steps will be taken after the training to appoint them as priests.”
Sekar Babu has also said that the ‘All-Caste Archaka’ scheme would soon be implemented in Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments temples all across the state.
The Minister has also promised that within 100 days of the DMK government, the ‘All-Caste Archarka’ scheme will be implemented. Sekar Babu has also mentioned that the talks regarding the issue is underway with CM Stalin.
While talking to the media, the Minister added, “We have discussed various plans to be implemented for the temples and its administration. These plans would be implemented in three phases: plans that need to be implemented immediately and those required to be enforced during the second and third phases. Tamil Nadu’s Chief Minister MK Stalin will make appropriate announcements for these plans to be implemented.”
Sekar Babu also said that in the upcoming days, non-Brahmin priests will be appointed in the Brahmin dominated temples. He has also assured that nearly 200 eligible non-Brahmin priests will be appointed in Brahmin dominated temples within 100 days of the DMK Government. As a measure to bridge the caste hierarchy among the Hindus in Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments temples across Tamil Nadu, the former Chief Minister and DMK President Karunanidhi’s government had launched a one-year junior Saiva archakar courses in six temples across Tamil Nadu in 2007-2008. It was started to give any non-Brahmin Hindu opportunities to become a priest.
IT’S CONGRESS MINDSET THAT IS RESPONSIBLE FOR TERRORISM IN J&K: RAJYAVARDHAN RATHORE
The BJP MP hits out at the Congress, alleging that the party is furthering Pakistan’s agenda in Jammu and Kashmir.
BJP MP Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore has accused Congress of furthering the agenda of Pakistan in Jammu and Kashmir, whose people had suffered terrorist attacks for decades.
“The mindset that the Congress party has, where one particular family is everything, is responsible for the roots of terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir over decades. The kind of involvement that Pakistan has in Jammu and Kashmir is the result of its policies,” Rathore told ANI on Sunday. Rathore was reacting to recent remarks by Congress leader Digvijaya Singh in a Clubhouse conversation that the revocation of Article 370 and stripping Jammu and Kashmir of statehood was an “extremely sad” decision and his party will have a “relook” at the issue.
“I am not surprised that they still nurse the same mindset. But this is a new India and it has decided that its Constitution will be applicable to its entire geographical sovereignty,” added Rathore.
He further said that the Central government has exposed Pakistan in the matter of Jammu and Kashmir before the whole world. The BJP leader also said that not just Pakistan, the Indian Army and the Indian government are prepared to respond to any country meaning harm to India.
Responding to the NIA probe into Singh’s remarks, he said that such comments have come even before.
“Former leadership (National Conference) had said that they would take China’s help. Now they are supporting their long-time friend Congress party. It is evident that they are working hand in glove with each other,” the BJP MP added.
He also said that these parties only want to loot the country, be it Jammu and Kashmir or any other state, sidelining the concerns of the citizens and they have been doing such politics for a very long time. ANI
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