Two former chief ministers of Jammu and Kashmir Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah have reacted to many decisions of the Central government in the recent past and have criticised the BJP for disempowering the people of Jammu and Kashmir post 5 August 2019.
Omar Abdullah said that there has been no development as promised by the central government after disempowering people by snatching their rights and privileges with the abrogation of Article 370.
He claimed that the central government is only taking away not only the rights but the symbols of self-respect like state flag, state constitution and changing the laws to pile up unemployment in Jammu and Kashmir.
Taking a dig at the BJP government he said, “Have J&K unemployed youth got jobs? We were told investors will come from all over the world to invest here. Has a single company invested in Jammu and Kashmir?”
Omar Abdullah has said that the BJP government has lost the plot on Kashmir and they will have to restore the rights of the people in order to bring peace in Jammu and Kashmir.
Taking a dig at the levels of normalcy in Jammu and Kashmir Mehbooba Mufti, after being denied passport, on Monday took to Twitter and said, “Passport Office refused to issue my passport based on CID’s report citing it as ‘detrimental to the security of India. This is the level of normalcy achieved in Kashmir since Aug 2019 that an ex Chief Minister holding a passport is a threat to the sovereignty of a mighty nation.”
Reacting to the denial of passport Omar Abdullah tweeted and said, “What a shame J&K police is going along with this farce. How is it that Mehbooba Mufti was not a threat to the nation when her party was allied with the BJP? As Chief Minister she was in charge of the Home Department & head of the Unified Command, now suddenly she’s a threat!”
Both these chief ministers have been very critical in the recent past about the policies of the BJP in Jammu and Kashmir and have accused them of suppressing the dissent by unleashing agencies like ED and NIA to silence all voices of opposition.
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BOMBAY HIGH COURT CENSURES KRK FOR COMMENTING ON BHAGNANI’S BUSINESSES
The Bombay High Court has censured Kamaal Rashid Khan alias KRK for his controversial and defamatory tweets against producer Vashu Bhagnani, his family, business, profession and projects
KRK has been stopped by the High Court from putting out any further tweets against Bhagnani and all his business interests till the pendency of the Rs 1 crore defamation suit filed by the veteran producer for ‘defamatory’, ‘slanderous’, and ‘distasteful’ statements as well as ‘patently false allegations on KRK’s Twitter and YouTube accounts.
As per the court order, an injunction has been issued, pending the final disposal of the suit, that prohibits “the defendant from publishing, circulating or repeating the allegations and tweets and/or making, publishing, circulating and/or communicating to the public any defamatory/slanderous comments and/or statements against the plaintiff and/or his family and/or his business, profession and/or his projects.”
“Social media is a very powerful tool which on many occasions is misused to defame reputed persons. Courts have time and again deprecated such misuse. This is yet another occasion where the Bombay High Court has passed an order restraining KRK from making slanderous and defamatory remarks against Vashu Bhagnani, his family members, his business, and his projects. This is the third court order against Khan in succession,” said Ameet Naik, Founder and Managing Partner of Naik Naik & Company. After hearing the matter at length, the court observed that the tweets are not criticism given by a film critic which is contrary to the defence of KRK and are serious defamatory and slanderous remarks.
CAPT AMARINDER LAUNCHES KEY MSME REFORMS
Chandigarh: Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh launched a fresh wave of reforms to further reduce the regulatory burden on MSMEs through rationalisation, digitalisation and decriminalisation of the regulatory landscape, thus enabling entrepreneurs to focus on expanding their operations in a predictable business environment during this Covid-19 pandemic. The reforms on removing imprisonment terms, building flexibility and reducing oversight in the labour rules, and pursuing a data-driven assessment of service delivery delays are all centred around making entrepreneurship easier in Punjab, said the Chief Minister.
Terming it the beginning of the state’s transformation journey, he said with these reforms, commitments had been set for future changes including rationalising trade license with shops and establishments act and removing imprisonment terms from 100 low-risk provisions in non-labour related rules. Besides, the Chief Minister announced that the number of labour registers will be reduced, requiring an entrepreneur to maintain from 60 to less than 14, and flexibility enhanced in hiring women employees. Discretionary powers of inspectors are being removed with regard to deductions related to the absence or leave which will be deduced from labour registers going forward. These changes will be incorporated in the new State Rules.
Further, to ensure timely delivery of key licenses and permits, as prescribed under the Transparency Act 2018, Government has begun a monthly data-driven assessment mechanism under the Chief Secretary to make sure not a single license or permit is delayed beyond the stipulated period. Going forward, it is also proposed to reduce the number of Pre-commissioning licenses & NOCs to start a business by at least 20% and the possibility of doing this entirely online being explored. Also, changes will be made in Land Use for starting new business and mechanisms will be developed for timely and hassle-free water, electricity and sewage connections. “These reforms are the start of a journey, and we hope to make Punjab a lighthouse State for MSME growth support,” he said, adding, “We have listened to entrepreneurs on the ground and we will continue to reduce the compliance burden to start, operate, and grow a business.”
Punjab CM sets 2 lakh a day vaccine target for April
Even as he noted with satisfaction that the Covid numbers in the state appeared to have plateaued, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Thursday ordered strict enforcement of Covid appropriate protocols to prevent any super spread events, along with an increase in daily vaccination doses to 2 lakh per day, and a special control room to be set up for effective in-person monitoring of home isolation cases.
Citing figures on mortality and positivity, the Chief Minister said that the restrictions currently in place are showing results, and the same needed to be implemented strictly, particularly in Mohali and other big cities showing high rates of transmission and cases.
He pointed out that the state’s positivity rate stands at 8.1%, even though positivity in the age group of less than 40 years had come down from 54% (September 2020) to 50% (March 2021). The curbs, coupled with strong efforts by all concerned, helped reduce the percentage of mortality in the age group below 60 years from 50% (September 2020) to 40% (March 2021), and should be strictly adhered to, he added. However, he reiterated his demand that the Centre should allow vaccination for under 45 in areas with more cases since the UK variant is infecting younger people more. He directed Chief Secretary Vini Mahajan to pursue the matter with the Central government while Dr KK Talwar stressed that patients of kidney and liver disease, who are under 45 years, should at least be allowed to be vaccinated.
The Chief Minister was chairing a virtual meeting with several ministers, senior administrative and police officials as well as medical/health experts to review the Covid and vaccine situation in the state.
Making it clear that there is no scope for complacency, he said the special control room with a dedicated team could utilise ANMs, ASHA workers, interns from medical colleges to move beyond just telephonic to more in-person monitoring. GMCHs should provide students to RRTs at District Level immediately, he further directed the Health Department.
RAJNATH SINGH CONGRATULATES IAF ON ITS RESPONSE TO CHINA IN EASTERN LADAKH
While addressing the biannual IAF Commanders’ Conference (AFCC-21) at Air Headquarters, Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh congratulated Indian Air Force for its befitting response to the “sudden developments in Eastern Ladakh” and appreciated its focus on “reorienting for the future” on Thursday. He also advised the Commanders to draw up long-term plans and strategies for capability enhancement to counter future threats.
He expressed happiness that the conference coincides with the birth anniversary of the Marshal of the Air Force Arjan Singh, DFC. Speaking about the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, Rajnath appreciated the role played by the IAF in assisting other government agencies in their task, as per an official statement from the defence ministry.
Referring to changing international geopolitics, he observed that the perceptible shift of focus from Trans-Atlantic to Trans-Pacific has become more obvious in the recent past. “Changing dimensions of war would now include advanced technologies, asymmetric capabilities and info-dominance, and IAF’s future preparations must include these aspects.”
The Defence Minister emphasised the need to promote ‘atmanirbharta’ in defence infrastructure, adding that the IAF’s order for LCA would result in a substantial boost to the domestic defence industry and will be a game-changer from the indigenisation perspective. With ANI inputs
EC ISSUES NOTICE TO BJP’S SAYANATAN BASU FOR INFLAMMATORY REMARK
Kolkata: The Election Commission (EC) on Thursday issued a notice to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Sayantan Basu for delivering an inflammatory statement, which is “an open threat to Bengal and its people”.
The EC asked Basu to explain his stand regarding his statement within 24 hours, failing which the Commission “shall take a decision without further reference to you”. According to the quote attached in EC’s statement, Basu said: “… I, Sayanatan Basu, am here to tell you that don’t try to play too much. We will play the game of Sitalkuchi. They killed 18 year old Ananda Barman, a first time voter, in the morning. He was the brother of the BJP’s Shakti Pramukh. We did not have to wait for long… (barely audible) Four of them were known the way to heaven. There was a dialogue in the film ‘Sholey’ you know – if you kill one we will kill four of you. Sitalkuchi witnessed it – if you kill one we will kill four of you.”
EC issues 24 hrs campaigning ban to BJP’s Dilip Ghosh over Sitalkuchi violence remark
The Election Commission (EC) on Thursday imposed a 24-hour ban on West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh from election campaigning for making “highly provocative and inciteful remarks” in connection with Sitalkuchi violence.
In its order, the Commission sternly warned Ghosh and advised him to desist from using such statement while making public utterances during the period when the Model Code of Conduct is in force. The ban imposed on Ghosh will be valid till 16 April. The EC has issued a notice to Ghosh on Tuesday over his remark on the killings of four men at Sitalkuchi in West Bengal’s Cooch Behar district and asked him to clarify his stance on the issue by 10 am on Wednesday.
Ghosh had remarked that there will be a “Sitalkuchi-like incident everywhere”. After his reply, the Commission noted that it has “carefully considered the reply of Dilip Ghosh and is of the considered view that he has violated clauses (1) and (4) of Part I of ‘General Conduct of Model Code of Conduct for the guidance of political parties and candidates’ and made highly provocative and inciteful remarks which could adversely impact law and order thereby affecting the election process”.
In his reply, the BJP state president had submitted that “it was never his intention to make any statement which would be in contravention of the Model Code of Conduct and the Representation of People Act/Indian Penal Code”.
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