Nitish Kumar, the chief minister of Bihar and leader of the Janata Dal-United (JD-U), stated on Saturday that it is important to consider how the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is severing MLAs from other parties and whether this is legal. His remarks came shortly after at least five JDU lawmakers switched allegiances to the saffron camp in Manipur.
All six JDU MPs in Manipur, according to Kumar, met with him after he withdrew from the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) a few weeks prior and assured the leadership of their dedication to the party.
Kumar added that the opposition would be united for the general election in 2024.
“When we parted ways from the NDA, all our six Manipur MLAs came and met us and assured us they were with JDU. We need to think about what’s going on. They’re breaking away the MLAs from the parties, is it constitutional?… The Opposition will unify for the 2024 elections,” the Bihar CM told reporters.
The Manipur development occurred while the JD(U), which had reestablished connections with Lalu Prasad Yadav’s Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) in order to reinstate the Mahagathbandhan government in power, was attempting to position Kumar for a larger role. The JD (U)’s executive meeting is held in Patna, the location of the JD(U).
The BJP was criticised earlier in the day by the national president of the JDU, Rajiv Ranjan Singh alias Lalan, for using “dhan bal” (money power) to lure lawmakers away from other parties. He added that the saffron party’s deceptions would not be enough to prevent the Kumar-led party from achieving national status by 2023.
“Whatever tricks the BJP may play, it will not be able to stop JD(U) from becoming a national party by 2023,” Singh said.
“Our MLAs in Manipur have defeated BJP candidates at the hustings. Ditto in Arunachal Pradesh, where our MLAs were poached while we were still in the NDA,” he added.
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Liz Truss’ government takes U-turn on plan to scrap 45% tax cut
Days after UK Prime Minister Liz Truss insisted she would not abandon the tax cut for the wealthiest, the conservative government on Monday took a U-turn on the plan to scrap the 45 per cent tax cut.
The British government has announced it will reverse plans to scrap the highest rate of income tax following a major backlash to its proposed “growth plan,”. In a statement posted online Monday, new Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng said the plan “had become a distraction. We get it, and we have listened. “
Kwarteng said that the proposed scrapping of the 45% rate for those earning more than 150,000 pounds (USD 167,000) had become a “distraction.” “From supporting British businesses to lowering the tax burden for the lowest paid, our Growth Plan sets out a new approach to build a more prosperous economy,” he said in a statement on his Twitter account.
However, it is clear that the abolition of the 45% tax rate has become a distraction from our overriding mission to tackle the challenges facing our country, “he added.
As a result, I’m announcing we are not proceeding with the abolition of the 45% tax rate. He also defended the delay in the reversal, saying, “We can always have a debate about when we could’ve made the decision, but the important thing is we’ve made the decision and we can now move forward with making the push for the growth plan.”
The radical cuts sent the pound plunging to historic lows and sparked market chaos, leading to a revolt within the governing Conservative Party. The U-turn comes after several Tory MPs voiced their opposition to the plan announced just 10 days ago in the mini-budget.
The proposal to scrap the rate paid by people earning over £150,000 a year has been criticised as unfair at a time of rising living costs. The damage is already done in terms of the Truss government’s standing with the voters and the markets.
Death toll rises to 43 in suicide bombing at Kabul school
The death toll from a suicide bombing at the Kaaj Educational Center in Afghanistan’s capital, Kabul, has gone up to 43. The casualty figures in Friday’s college bombing in the Hazara neighbourhood are likely to rise further, as per the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA). Till now, 43 people have been killed and around 83 have been wounded, with girls and young women as the main victims. The human toll from Friday’s college bombing in the Hasra neighbourhood of the Afghan capital continues to rise. 43 killed. 83 wounded Girls and young women are the main victims. Casualty figures are likely to rise further. “The verification process continues by UNAMA human rights teams in Kabul,” tweeted UNAMA.
Earlier, on Friday, a blast occurred in the 13th security area of Kabul, Taliban spokesperson Abdul Nafee Takour was quoted. Multiple media reports claim that about 100 students of the institute have been killed in the attack. However, the UNAMA said that its human rights teams in Kabul are helping to establish an accurate record of the college attack in the Hazara neighbourhood.
Earlier, a number of women from Afghanistan’s minority Hazara community on Saturday protested in Kabul against the terror attack at the Kaaj Educational Center. The female protestors dressed in black chanted slogans against the genocide of minorities and demanded their rights.
This explosion comes a few days after a blast was reported near the Wazir Akbar Khan area of Kabul that sparked a global outcry. The recent blast outside the Russian Embassy in Kabul was also condemned in the strongest terms.
This series of blasts comes as the Taliban completed one year of its rule in Afghanistan following the ouster of the US-backed civilian government last year. Rights groups said the Taliban had broken multiple pledges to respect human and women’s rights. Meanwhile, the Taliban on Monday shot into the crowd of young girls who were peacefully protesting in Herat to demand their right to go to school.
Rights groups say that the Taliban’s human rights abuses have brought widespread condemnation and imperilled international efforts to address the country’s dire situation.
Bolsonaro to face Lula in run off to Brazil President poll
Brazil’s incumbent President Jair Bolsonaro will face former President Luiz Inacio ‘Lula’ da Silva in the deciding second round of Brazil’s presidential election later this month.
Neither candidate was able to hit the 5 per cent mark needed to win in the first round, reported CNN. With more than 97 per cent of the vote counted on Sunday evening, results released by Brazil’s Electoral Superior Court (TSE) showed left-wing candidate and former president Luiz Silva held a slight lead over incumbent President Bolsonaro – but not enough to cross the threshold to victory.
Lula and Bolsonaro will face each other again on October 30 for a run-off vote, reported CNN. The vote on Sunday followed a bruising campaign season marked by bitter verbal attacks and a series of violent incidents between supporters of Bolsonaro and Lula. Several other presidential candidates were in the running but trailed far behind the two frontrunners.
1700 killed, 12800 injured in rain, floods in Pakistan
At least 1,695 people were killed, while 12,865 were injured so far (2 October) since mid-June due to the devastating floods and rains in Pakistan, the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) said on Sunday.
Pakistan has endured severe monsoon weather since mid-June 2022, causing widespread flooding and landslides with severe repercussions on human lives, property, agriculture, and infrastructure. To date, 81 districts across five of Pakistan’s six provinces have been declared “calamity hit” by the government of Pakistan—with Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Sindh provinces being the worst hit. As of mid-September, 33 million people had been affected; at least 1,481 people have died; over 12,720 people have been injured; and an estimated 7.6 million people may be temporarily displaced.
The United Nations is set to launch another appeal this week for an additional USD 600 million to Pakistan to help the country recover from the impact of the record-breaking floods.
“2nd Follow-up meeting of the Steering Committee for Coordination Regarding International Assistance for Flood Relief Activities, chaired by Humair Karim, Acting Secretary EAD to discuss mapping of humanitarian assistance and relief efforts,” Pakistan’s Economic Affairs Division (EAD) said in a tweet. “The UN is in the process of launching a Revised Humanitarian Appeal on the 4th of October in which an additional USD 600 million will be requested for immediate relief assistance,” it added. Pakistan EAD Secretary Humair Karim informed donors and relief agencies that the UN would launch the revised humanitarian appeal on October 4 for USD 600 million in additional aid. Earlier, the UN launched a flash appeal in August for US $160 million for flood relief support.
Chinese nationals in Pakistan facing repeated attacks over Beijing’s ambitious CPEC projects
Ever since Beijing launched the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the repeated attacks on Chinese nationals in Pakistan’s Sindh, Balochistan, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa provinces and the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir region reveal the strong dissent of Pakistani nationals against Chinese interests.
Especially after Chinese hordes landed in Pakistan in connection with CPEC projects, different extremist groups have made Chinese interests targets of their attacks inside the country. Recently, a Chinese national was killed on Wednesday and two others were injured when an unidentified man opened fire inside a dental clinic in Karachi’s Saddar area.
According to the Asian Lite publication, since 2016, when Beijing launched the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), this was the 10th attack on Chinese nationals and interests in Pakistan. In Karachi, this was the second attack on Chinese nationals since the Shehbaz Sharif government came into power.
15-year-old boy shot during ‘verbal dispute’ in US
A 15-year-old boy was shot during an argument with two people on a Bronx street, according to a media report. New York City Police are in search of the two suspects, as per Fox News. The shooting occurred around 11:00 PM on Friday in the Bronx neighbourhood of Castle Hill. The teen got into a “verbal dispute” with the two suspects before one of them opened fire, the media outlet reported.
Both the suspects fled from the scene. Shooting incidents in the United States have been common these days. In early September, one student was killed and another was injured in a stabbing at a high school in North Carolina.
Prior to that, a 15-year-old teenager was apprehended for allegedly shooting and injuring two fellow students in Washington, according to DC police. A 19-year-old man was also charged with murder in a series of random shootings over around two hours last weekend in Detroit that killed three people. US President Joe Biden has said that he is determined to ban assault weapons in America amid the increasing gun violence in the country.
He went on to say he had helped ban assault weapons previously, referring to the 1994 ban he helped usher in while serving in the US Senate. Notably, Congress passed a 10-year ban on assault weapons in 1994.
Meanwhile, authorities announced that it will soon be forbidden to carry a firearm, even concealed, in the famed Times Square district and other public places in the city and state of New York.
Mayor Eric Adams, as quoted by The Washington Times, has said that visitors to New York City will see signs in Times Square advertising it as a “sensitive location” where people cannot carry guns.
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