Eight Goa Congress legislators met with chief minister Pramod Sawant on Wednesday as they prepared to join the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). This is the most recent in a string of defections from the opposition party days after Rahul Gandhi began a 3,700 km-long foot march to resurrect its waning electoral fortunes amid internal strife.
Following a meeting in the state assembly chamber of the leader of the opposition, Michael Lobo, eight of the 17 members of the Congress met Sawant. To “merge” their group with the BJP, they adopted a resolution.
While none of the MLAs were accessible for comment, the eight have started the paperwork necessary to inform the Speaker—who is currently in Delhi and won’t be arriving in Goa until later today—of their “voluntary” decision.
After rebels failed to secure the necessary number of votes to defect to the BJP without triggering anti-defection statute disqualification proceedings, a split in the Congress was avoided in July. While two other MPs hesitated, five of them declined to participate.
Digambar Kamat and Michael Lobo have nevertheless persisted in their attempts to persuade the other MLAs in the weeks thereafter. After recently visiting Delhi, Lobo falsely stated upon his return to Goa that he had been there to participate in the Congress demonstration against inflation and price increases. He was absent, nevertheless, at the Delhi Congress protest. Kamat again rejected the rumours that he had visited Delhi, although a passenger list provided by a local news outlet indicated that Kamat had actually purchased a ticket to Delhi. It was unknown if Kamat had actually travelled.
Earlier, the Congress filed a disqualification plea against both Kamat and Lobo, alleging that the two conspired with the BJP to split the Congress and unite with the latter. The Speaker has not yet ruled on the plea.
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Prior the festival season, India’s unemployment rate falls to a 4-year low.
India’s unemployment is the major issue the country is facing in today’s time. The govt, the opposition and the citizens often have clashed for the reason. The Indian unemployment rate dropped to the lowest in the past 4 years in September 2022.
The jobless rate sharply fell to 6.43%, data from the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy Pvt. showed. The reading is the lowest since August 2018 and compares with a one-year high of 8.3% in August.
The decline is seen even after 10 million new jobs were added; the workers who entered the market couldn’t find any work. In rural areas, the unemployment rate declined to 5.8% from 7.7% in August, while in urban areas it stood at 7.7%, lower than 9.6% in the previous month.
To a surprise, this data came just before the Indian festive season which typically aids employment growth and aids job growth. Strong demand in the services sector along with steady monsoon rains also likely boosted employment opportunities.
India’s economic expansion has been at one of the fastest rates in the world, but not enough to create jobs. That has led to some discontent among the country’s youth while giving ammunition to opposition parties to ratchet up the rhetoric against unemployment.
Sonia arrives in Mysuru to join ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’
All India Congress Interim president Sonia Gandhi is set to be a part of the ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ as she arrived in Mysuru on Monday.
Sources have said that Gandhi will stay at a resort in the Kodagu district for two days, before joining the Yatra on 6th October, which is currently in it’s Karnataka leg.
Priyanka Gandhi Vadhra will take part in the event, the next day, according to the Karnataka Congress.
This will be the first time that all the members of the Gandhi family will be present in the Yatra that began on 7th September from Kanyakumari and has covered Tamil Nadu, Kerala and will finish up 511 kilometres of the area in 21 days.
The march was aimed at covering as many as 12 states in five months. It recently reached Karnataka on Friday (30th September) and will be here for the next 21 days before moving north. A distance of 25 km is covered every day in the Padyatra (march).
According to the Congress, the ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ is being held to combat the divisive policies of the BJP-led central government and to make people aware of the dangers of economic inequality, social polarisation, and political centralisation. It includes marches, rallies, and public meetings.
The Congress suffered a debacle in the assembly polls held earlier this year, and the Yatra is seen as an attempt to increase the party’s outreach to the public and prepare it for the upcoming polls.
Diary entry by young Modi reveal the origins of ‘Sabka Saath, sabka vikas’
The inspiration for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s idea of ‘Sabka saath, sabka vikas’ came from a quote by Mahatma Gandhi which he penned in his diary in 1980’s, a diary entry from the Modi Archive revealed.
The Modi archive, a platform that tracks the prime minister’s life, his early days and journey, features his handwritten notes and his mind on a range of issues. The entries by a young Modi show that Mahatma Gandhi’s ideals had left an impact on his life, since he was young. The same is also reflected in the Centre’s welfare schemes.
The country celebrated Mahatma Gandhi’s 153rd birth anniversary on Sunday.
“I do not believe in the doctrine of the greatest good of the greatest number. It is to sacrifice the good of forty-nine per cent to achieve the supposed good of fifty-one per cent. It is a heartless doctrine and has done harm to humanity. “The only real, dignified human doctrine is the greatest good of all,” wrote young Modi in a note.
The Modi Archive’s twitter handle shared moments when he visited Gandhi’s birthplace, Porbandar, and sought his blessings, just days before he was sworn in as Gujarat’s Chief Minister in 2001.
“At Porbandar, the place where #MahatmaGandhi was born, Modi looks at a portrait of the Mahatma. “After a few days, Modi was sworn in as Gujarat’s Chief Minister and has been in public office for 21 years since,” said the tweet by Modi Archive.
PM Modi replied to the tweet by sharing the lessons of water conservation which his hometown teaches and provided the link for the same.
Modi’s ability to turn schemes into mass movements like the Swach Bharat Abhiyan also finds its roots in Gandhi who turned the fight with Britishers into a mass movement through “Jan Bhagidari’.
Speaking at a media conclave in 2007, Modi, who was the then Chief Minister of Gujarat said, “As far as the development of concerned, it is my opinion that the way every citizen came together during the time of independence, numerous people sacrificed and tried to make the country free, and hundreds of people were spending captured in the jails of Andaman and Nicobar, but the biggest contribution of Mahatma Gandhi was that he converted freedom into a mass movement.”
Earlier on Sunday PM Modi, along with Vice President Jagdeep Dhankar paid floral tributes to Mahatma Gandhi and Lal Bahadur Shastri at the parliament house.
He, along with Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankar also attended a prayer meet organised at Gandhi Smriti on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti.
Paying homage to Mahatma Gandhi on his 153rd birth anniversary, PM Modi tweeted, “This Gandhi Jayanti is, even more, special because India marks Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav. I also encourage you to buy Khadi and handicrafts as a tribute to Gandhi Ji.”
Congress prez poll: ‘There is no G-23, there never was,’ says Shashi Tharoor
Congress leader, Shashi Tharoor who is contesting in the party president elections has been engaged in the hectic campaign. On Monday, he spoke about the G-23 group, which had written a letter to Sonia Gandhi about two years ago about the crucial need for reconstructing needed within the party. Another senior Congress leader, Mallikarjun Kharge is also in the race to be the party president. Many of the letter writers are now backing up Kharge.
“First of all, there is no G-23 group. There never was,” Tharoor said. “As far as I can tell you, a couple of seniors wrote the letter. They invited a large number of people to support them. It so happened that the covid lockdown was on, and only 23 people were available to sign. There could have been 100 or more,” he added.
His comments come amid swipes from the rival leaders as Congress gears up to hold its elections for the crucial post on October 17. Over the weekend, the BJP’s Amit Malviya tweeted that the leaders of the rebel group had abandoned “one of their own”.
Kharge added that there was no G-23 group on Sunday. He added that he had told Tharoor that a consensus candidate would be preferable, but that Tharoor insisted on a vote for the “sake of democracy.”
Tharoor claimed to have more than 60 proposers for the Congress presidential nomination after Kharge was accompanied to the nomination process on Friday by many of his prominent party colleagues, including Anand Sharma and Manish Tewari of the G-23.
Farmers in Punjab demonstrate action in the Lakhimpur Kheri case by blocking rail tracks for three hours.
Members of the Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee (KMSC) blocked rail traffic for three hours on Monday demanding the sacking of Union Minister of state for home Ajay Mishra on the first anniversary of the Lakhimpur Kheri Violence.
KMSC general secretary Sarwan Singh Pandher said: “We are holding a protest at 17 locations in the region. Rail traffic is blocked on the Amritsar-Delhi, Amritsar-Khemkaran and Amritsar-Pathankot routes. We will burn the effigy of the central government at eight locations, namely Muktsar, Mansa, Barnala, Malerkotla, Sangrur, Fatehgarh Sahib, Rupnagar and Nabha to protest the lack of action against Mishra.”
Farmers were staging a protest in Tikunia village on October 3rd last year against the three farm laws introduced by the BJP govt. Then deputy minister Keshav Prasad Maurya visited the place and four of the farmers were crushed under the wheels of the convoy of cars. In the subsequent violence, four others, including two BJP workers and a journalist, were killed.
Pandher demanded the release of the farmers arrested after the incident and that the Union minister should be sent behind bars after being sacked from the cabinet.
He said the Centre should also revoke the notification issued for amending the distribution of electricity licence rules. He alleged that the government was now going to distribute electricity to private companies. “The right of distribution of electricity belongs to state governments, but by issuing this notification, the central government is taking it into its own hands and giving it to private houses,” he claimed.
He demanded ₹7,000 compensation per acre for managing paddy stubble.
Induction of first made-in-India light combat helicopters
The induction of the first batch of originally developed light combat helicopters or LCHs into the Indian Air Force is being witnessed by India. The Air Force organised the event in Jodhpur, Rajasthan in the presence of defence minister Rajnath Singh and Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari.
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited developed the light combat helicopters under government’s ‘make in India’ initiative, expanding it to the defence sector. The LCHs have a list of top-notch features including all-weather combat capability, high altitude performance, agility, maneuverability, and extended range. The choppers have night-attack capability and crash-worthy landing gear for better survival.
Rajnath Singh reached Jodhpur on Monday for the key event “I would be in Jodhpur, Rajasthan tomorrow, 3rd October, to attend the Induction ceremony of the first indigenously developed Light Combat Helicopters (LCH). The induction of these helicopters will be a big boost to the IAF’s combat prowess. Looking forward to it,” he had tweeted on Sunday.
A light combat helicopter weights 5.8 tonnes. They have been named “Prachand”.
“The induction of indigenously developed Light Combat Helicopters (LCH) will enhance our capability and will boost defence production. There could not have been better timing for LCH induction than Navratri and in the lands of warriors, Rajasthan,” Rajnath said while inducting the choppers.
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