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Rahul all set to take over Congress before Bihar polls

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In a major development that may have big impact on national politics, if party sources are to be believed, Rahul Gandhi has “agreed” to take over the reins as Congress president. He is all set to make a fresh and grand start ahead of the Bihar Assembly elections. There are indications that in his second innings, he will be re-launched in a new avatar and will get a free hand in taking party decisions.

At the time of his resignation, he had clearly stated that someone outside the Gandhi family should get the responsibility for the post. Insiders say that Rahul Gandhi was adamant on not becoming the party president again. But now sources in the party say that on the basis of the feedback from the ground, Rahul Gandhi has made up his mind to sit in the saddle once again.

While Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra were trying to persuade him till the last minute, the former had to take over as interim president. Being a mother and knowing Rahul Gandhi’s temperament, Sonia Gandhi chose patience over persuasion.

While all this was happening, Rahul Gandhi did not opt for any vacation this time; instead, he kept working for the organisation behind the scenes. Now the uncertainty among Congress workers will come to an end as Rahul Gandhi is on his way to becoming president again.

Sources suggest that this time, Rahul Gandhi is paying full attention to the Bihar Assembly elections. Having come out of the hangover of the Lok Sabha elections defeat, he now wants to go all out in Bihar.

His close confidants suggest that Rahul Gandhi has now understood that in politics, victory and defeat go hand-in-hand. He knows that Bihar results won’t be favourable to him, but still he wants to give his best shot.

 It is believed that Rahul Gandhi can become the president again anytime between October 2020 and January 2021. But this time, Rahul Gandhi will take charge completely. He will not let any senior party leaders influence the decision-making process. In his last stint, he promised some “big reforms” but at the end, he had to make peace with senior leaders and satraps. There is a view that a series of such incidents had dented Rahul’s image, and gradually, followers had started to part ways from him. Eventually, Rahul Gandhi was left alone.

Of late, there has been a noticeable change in Rahul Gandhi’s social media political messages and even his appearance when he appeared online during ongoing coronavirus crisis. His new look and hair style also created quite a buzz in both public and political circles.

It is now certain that changes in the central and state organisations will only commence after the coronation of Rahul Gandhi. Earlier, there were reports which suggested that between July and October, some major reshuffle was likely to take place including restructuring the CWC and AICC, change in state presidents and state in-charge. All these moves have now been put on hold.

Meanwhile, Bihar can see some changes due to the forthcoming Assembly elections. But in the rest of the country, more or less things would remain the same.

MASS LEADERS TO GET FREE HAND

 It is believed that Rahul Gandhi won’t take any decision in haste or excitement. In Haryana, he did not give full command to former Chief Minister Bhupendra Hooda before the election; in the end the Congress lost with a thin margin. Later, Rahul Gandhi openly acknowledged this error of judgement. But it is now believed that Hooda will get a free hand in Haryana. As per sources, Hooda’s handpicked Geeta Bhukkal could be made PCC chief. The same strategy will be followed in all the states as well.

INNOVATION & EXPERIMENT WILL CONTINUE

Rahul Gandhi had introduced a concept of secretary in-charge and interim president in all states in his last stint. In addition to that, he had also initiated innovation like data analytics, organisation of intellectuals and launch of Shakti project. With the return of Rahul Gandhi, one is likely to see more of such experiments in the near future as well.

Rahul Gandhi will continue to give opportunity to leaders of every section, especially youth and Dalit. It is certain that with his return, the national general secretary will be in the lead role with state in-charges. There will be two to four executive PCC chiefs in every state.

Although Rahul Gandhi wished to tour India before his second stint and had planned to start the padyatra from Gujarat to Gandhi Dham, this plan has now been shelved due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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SADHGURU’S NEXT BOOK ‘KARMA’ TO BE LAUNCHED IN APRIL 2021

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Penguin Random House, US, has acquired international rights for ‘Karma – A Yogi’s Guide to Creating Your Own Destiny,’ a new book authored by Sadhguru, founder, Isha Foundation. The world’s leading publishing house has offered a million-dollar advance for the book, a rarity that is only reserved for a handful of bestselling authors. Penguin Random House will publish and launch the book in the US and India in April 2021. In India, the first print will run over 1 lakh copies. ‘Karma’ is one of the most deeply ingrained concepts – although a much-maligned one – in the Indian psyche. Although most Indians accept karma as the governing principle of their lives, there are innumerable interpretations of the term, its power and function which has gradually acquired fatalistic connotations. Through this book, Sadhguru seeks to put the reader back in the driver’s seat, turning him from a terror-struck passenger to a confident driver navigating the course of his own destiny. The book is an exploration and a manual, restoring one’s understanding of karma to its original potential for freedom and empowerment instead of a source of entanglement. It is a manual on how to live intelligently and joyfully in a challenging world. Sadhguru, whose books have sold over 3 million copies, has written extensively on various aspects and dimensions of the spiritual process. Some of the most popular titles authored by him include Adiyogi: The Source of Yoga, Mystic’s Musings, A Taste of Well-Being and Body: The Greatest Gadget among many more. 

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WON’T LET BJP TO DIVIDE PUNJAB ON CASTE LINES: CM AMARINDER SINGH

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Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Friday charged the BJP with trying to divide the society on caste lines “to promote their political interests.” He also said that he would not allow them to impose their agenda on the state.

“I will not let them disturb the peaceful atmosphere of Punjab at any cost,” the Chief Minister said, pointing to the BJP’s attempt to take out a ‘Dalit Insaf Yatra’ on Thursday.

He said that they were trying to take out yatra without taking due permissions. These divisive tactics will never succeed in Punjab, whose people are happily living together for their collective progress, he added.

The BJP, said Captain Amarinder, had no moral right to talk about Dalit rights, which they had been brazenly trampling wherever they were in power. He said the statistics showed that Uttar Pradesh, under BJP rule, accounts for over 25% of the total cases of atrocities against SC people in the country, and had recorded the highest number of such incidents in 2018. “Is this your definition of justice for Dalits? Is this what you are offering the SC people of Punjab?” he asked the BJP.

The Chief Minister said the BJP, finding itself cornered over the farm laws, was indulging in theatrics and mis-propaganda with the sole motive of diverting public attention. The fact is that the party has completely failed the farmers and also the SC students, whom its national leadership had deprived of access to higher education by abruptly withdrawing from the central post-matric scholarship scheme, he said.

Captain Amarinder attributed the BJP’s attempted rally to the fact that “it is rattled over the state government’s successful launch of its scholarship scheme for SC students”. Despite suffering Rs 800 crore losses due to the “anti-Dalit” decision of the BJP-led Union Government, the cash-strapped Punjab government had not only introduced a new scheme – B R Ambedkar SC Post-Matric Scholarship – for SC students but even expanded its ambit to benefit more youngsters, he pointed out, adding that the BJP clearly could not digest this.

“We Punjabis will sacrifice anything, as we did during the freedom struggle, to protect our unity and integrity, which forms the ethos of the Indian Constitution,” the Chief Minister said, warning the BJP against continuing its agenda.

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KARNATAKA: UG, PG AND DIPLOMA CLASSES TO BEGIN FROM 17 NOVEMBER

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The Karnataka government has decided to begin the physical classes of higher education institutions from 17 November. Classes for undergraduate, postgraduate, engineering and diploma colleges will begin after Diwali. Deputy Chief Minister Dr. C. N. Ashwatha Narayana, who is also the minister for higher education, announced this on Friday after he made a presentation to the Chief Minister B. S. Yeddyurappa about the preparations being made by the concerned department towards this.

However, the students will be having the option of attending the classes physically or online. But for practical sessions, it will be mandatory for the students to attend physically. The decision is taken keeping in mind the interest of the future of the students. For those who want to attend the physical classes, a student’s consent letter and parent’s consent letters are necessary and also they have to register their names, he explained. Each college will be having a Covid-19 task force to ensure adherence to the SOP and guidelines while running the classes.Earlier, the government wanted to open the primary education institutions in the first stage and higher education in the later stage. But now, the government has changed this and decided to open the classes of higher education in the first stage, Ashwatha Narayana informed. The cooperation of various departments is sought and is necessary to run the classes. The departments of Social Welfare, OBC, Health, and Higher Education will be involved in this. The District Commissioners are told to take the required action, he told.

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BJP wants its own CM, not Nitish Kumar: Asaduddin Owaisi

Lokeswara Rao

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AIMIM chief and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi, who has been trying hard to make his presence felt in Bihar Assembly elections, said that there is a political vacuum in the state. He further said that BJP, JDU, RJD and Congress failed the people of Bihar.

He told The Daily Guardian, “Bihar right now requires an alternative political voice for the betterment of the state, JD(U)-BJP-RJD-Congress combination failed the state. During the 15 years of Nitish Kumar or 15 years of the RJD, nothing has happened in terms of real development. BJP does not support Nitish Kumar. It wants a BJP person as CM in Bihar. BJP has been playing games with the people of Bihar.”

Further, Owaisi feels that Bihar CM Nitish Kumar is a non-performer CM. He added that Bihar needs better infrastructure, better governance, better hospitals, better education. He accused the present government of having failed to address the problems of migrant labor and unemployment.

He said that this time the people will definitely bless us. “We will stop BJP from coming to power. We don’t help BJP by cutting anti-incumbency votes. The RJD and Congress don’t have political conviction to defeat BJP. Mark my words, BJP does not want Nitish as CM. My goal is to bring our alliance to power”, Owaisi added further. AIMIM is contesting in 18 assembly seats in the elections.

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UP POLICE TO COMMUNICATE IN LOCAL DIALECTS ON 112 EMERGENCY HELPLINE NUMBER

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On the directions of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, the 112 emergency helpline number that is manned by Uttar Pradesh police staff, will now have personnel who will be conversing with the assistance seekers in local dialects like Bhojpuri, Bundelkhandi, Awadhi and Bundeli. According to police officials, the CM directed the use of local dialects as many of the assistance seekers who call 112 are from the rural area and they do not feel comfortable while speaking in Hindi.

“On the directions of the CM, we are now deploying people who will be speaking in local dialects so that the assistance seeker can share his or her grievance without any hindrance and getting intimated”, IPS officer Asim Arun, ADG, 112 said. 112 helpline number, on average, gets close to 15000 calls every day.

“Woman complainants, especially from the rural area, feel more comfortable if the person is speaking in their native dialect. We have been executing several pro-people programs, this is one of them,” Arun stated.

CM Adityanath, who recently started ‘Mission Shakti’, a six-month drive to focus on women and children in the state, recently interacted with women village pradhans, block members and women teachers. During this exercise, a village head from Ballia district had requested the CM that women would feel more comfortable talking in their local dialect.

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Top Andhra university faces land grabbing charges, SIT probe underway

Lokeswara Rao

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Gandhi Institute of Technology and Management (GITAM) University, which is said to be the largest private university in Telugu states, is facing massive land grabbing and encroachment charges.

According to some officials in Andhra Pradesh, the university, which is based in Visakhapatnam and has campuses in Hyderabad and Bangalore, has violated the laws of the land.

Revenue Divisional Officer of Visakhapatnam conducted an inquiry and confirmed that GITAM university has encroached 40.51 acres of land at Rushikonda and Endada of Visakhapatnam Districts.

It has been found that the university authorities have constructed a compound wall and some structures in these encroached lands. Based on the RDO report, a Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the CID is also probing the matter.

The survey numbers of 15,16,17,18,19, 20 in Endada and 55, 61 survey numbers land have been found to be illegally occupied by the GITAM.

The RDO report explains that the previous government had interesting transactions with GITAM management but did not take the land back since the university is very influential and had connections with the government heads.

It was in 1981 that the GITAM management applied to the state government for allotment of 71.15 acres of land in posh Rushikonda and Endada mandals for setting up of educational institutions.

Since the land was assigned for landless poor and in some legal dispute, the then government allotted the land to GITAM subject to certain conditions that it should purchase the lands as per the rate prescribed by the government after the settlement in the court or the government might take back the land and permanent structures should not be built until the dispute is over. But as per the report of officials, the GITAM violated all rules.

By 1996, the issue was settled in the court and GITAM had already constructed buildings on 14 acres and kept the 57 acres vacant.

Subsequently, the Chief Commissioner of Lands visited the university and said 49 acres are enough for this private University and the remaining land should be taken by the Government.

The then government took back 22 acres of land, Later, the then Naidu government handed over the entire land to the institute at a nominal rate of Rs 18,000 per acre. The actual price in that area is at least 10 crores per acre.

Now, the latest inquiry by RDO has revealed that the GITAM university was in illegal possession of nearly 40.51 acres of assigned land. The sources told The Daily Guardian that the Jagan Mohan Reddy government will act stringently on it as the CM is serious about the land disputes in the state.

The Jagan government will conduct a comprehensive land survey from 1st January 2021 in the state. The survey is conducted after 100 years to settle the land disputes permanently.

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