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Young vs old in Congress: Team RaGa blames Sonia, Manmohan for defeat

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The repercussions of Sachin Pilot turning a rebel can now be seen in the Congress. There are angry outbursts within India’s grand old party. Congress president Sonia Gandhi and former Prime Minister Manmohan were left nonplussed when young MPs from Team Rahul Gandhi registered a strong dissent and blamed both of them for the party’s debacle during a meeting of the Rajya Sabha members.

Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi while addressing the Rajya Sabha members said that the BJP was hell bent upon killing democracy. She said that despite the BJP’s efforts the Congress would be able to save its government in Rajasthan. But even before Sonia Gandhi’s observations could set off a debate in the Congress circles, the whole narrative got diverted after outbursts within the party and the blame of defeat had been shifted on Sonia and Manmohan. Former Union minister Manish Tewari, however, defended the two and tweeted that when the UPA was responsible for defeat in 2014 so likewise 2019 debacle should be reviewed. As a result of this, the infighting of the Congress has come out in the open.

The tussle between old guards and young leaders has been a common sight ever since Rahul Gandhi has taken over charge of the Congress. Sources said that leaders like Kapil Sibal and P. Chidambaram targeted Team Rahul Gandhi. They said the party›s graph was going down, there was no organisational management and the media department was in shambles. Poll defeats have added fuel to the fire. The old guards are now saying that these young leaders were given too much importance and they did nothing in return. In a bid to hide their failure, they started blaming us, said veterans.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said that if Sachin Pilot had been given tough tasks, he would not have taken such a step. Sonia Gandhi had called a meeting of MPs to discuss various issues, but the parley parliamentarians turned the heat on Rahul›s team. The young leaders of Rahul team are either ineffective or leaving the party questioning the working style of the high command. Ashok Tanwar, Jyotiraditya Scindia and Sachin Pilot are some of them.

Rajiv Satav of Team Rahul blamed UPA-II for the predicament of the Congress. This led to heated exchange. Rajya Sabha member from Punjab Shamsher Singh Dhillon reminded the leaders of how he struggled at the district level. He blamed that the youngsters were given too much without any struggle. According to sources, only 7 MPs out of 40 were in favour of giving Rahul Gandhi party’s charge. When Rajya Sabha MP Venugopal tried to make the situation light, Bihar MP Akhilesh Singh took potshots at him, saying Kerala may have organisational management but there is nothing like that in other states.

MPs were concerned that the party was unorganised and nothing was happening except anti-Modi rants. Members are unhappy with the leaders who have been sent to Rajasthan for crisis management. There›s a complete lack of coordination in the party. While shifting his MLAs to Jaisalmer, Gehlot said that the fight was for saving democracy. MLAs were being mentally tortured and they were being offered crores of rupees, alleged Gehlot. He further alleged that BJP top leadership was conspiring to topple his government. State leaders are sitting pretty despite rebel leaders camping in Haryana. They are not doing anything to manage. Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi are backing Ashok Gehlot but other leaders are silent which is revealing the infighting of the Congress.

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Bank licences to corporates a ‘bad idea’: Rajan

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New Delhi: Days after an Internal Working Group (IWG) of Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) recommended allowing large Indian corporates to enter the banking sector, former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan and Deputy Governor Viral Acharya have hit back at the suggestion and questioned the timing for it. Terming the recommendation as a “bombshell”, in a blogpost, they said that although several recommendations of the report are worth adopting the one to allow corporate houses into banking should not be taken up. “To the contrary, it is even more important today to stick to the tried and tested limits on corporate involvement in banking,” said the article.

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Foreign Secretary to visit Nepal on 26 November

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Kathmandu: Resuming the high-level visit and exchanges with Nepal, India is sending its top diplomat to Kathmandu on 26 November. Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla will pay an official visit to the Himalayan country on November 26-27, Nepal’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Monday. The announcement was made in New Delhi too. The visit is in keeping with the tradition of regular high-level exchanges between the two neighbours and the priority India attaches to its relations with Nepal, India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in its statement. Shringla’s visit comes after two back-to-back high-level visits from new Delhi by Army Chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane (November) and Research and Analysis Wing head Samant Goel (October).

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Market opens higher, Sensex hits fresh high

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Mumbai: The key Indian equity indices opened in the green on Monday with the BSE Sensex touching a new record high within just minutes into the trade. Healthy buying was witnessed in metal, energy and oil and gas stocks. Sensex touched an all-time high of 44,271.15 points. The Nifty50 on the National Stock Exchange was trading at 12,930.85, higher by 71.80 points or 0.56 per cent from its previous close.

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Covid-19: Vibrant Gujarat summit may be postponed

Abhijit Bhatt

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The biennial Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit, organised by the Gujarat government to attract investors, is unlikely to be held this year, due to the worsening Covid-19 situation in Gujarat. The summit, considered the foremost among all industrial summits of Gujarat, may be postponed till January 2021.

A senior Gujarat government official told The Daily Guardian that Vibrant Gujarat would be held in the first or second week of January. However, given the pandemic situation at the moment, it is difficult to say whether the summit will take place in just a month and half’s time for sure. However, an official decision is yet to be taken. No announcements have been made about cancelling the January event.

Narendra Modi started the Vibrant Gujarat Summit in 2003 when he was the Chief Minister of Gujarat to attract foreign investors to the state.

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Military storage bunkers spotted in Chinese village near Doklam

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NEW DELHI: China’s new villages close to the Line of Actual Control, meant ostensibly for settling civilians from far-flung areas close to the border, are part of strategy to enhance its military infrastructure in the area, top sources said.

One such village has also come up near Doklam where military storage facilities have been observed, as per intelligence reports. Construction of the new hardened bunkers appears to be an effort at militarily reinforcing the larger Doklam region, the source said.

There are dozens of similar settlements along the LAC, most of them coming up in areas facing Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh. Part of their integrated model villages that the Chinese intend to put to dual use – for civil and military purposes, some villages however remain uninhabited and are only turning out to increase military infrastructure to cater to additional deployment of the People’s Liberation Army.

Shelters have also come up at Bumdro which is opposite Kameng. Six to seven concrete huts have been constructed at Bumdro near Domsongrong to accommodate PLA personnel during their patrolling activity in Mera La, Thag La and Yangtse Area.

China has also constructed a road from Tirkangto Shivung La. The work was being undertaken from uphill side of Tirkang village in the south west direction towards Shiyung La.

IANS

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Farmers’ union refuses to budge, Punjab CM expresses concern

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CM Captain Amarinder Singh.

Expressing serious concern over the decision of one farmers’ union not to allow passenger trains to ply till the Centre accedes to their demands on the issue of farm laws, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday said this would put the people to major inconvenience and could have grave consequences for the state.

Reacting to the announcement of Kissan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee (Piddi) that they would not budge on their rail blockade of passenger trains till the farm laws’ issue is resolved, the Chief Minister said that, by striking this discordant note, the union was acting against the interests of Punjab and its people.

When all the other 31 farmers’ organisations had decided unanimously to withdraw from the tracks to allow both goods and passenger trains to move in the state for the next 15 days, this one union’s decision was not understandable, said Captain Amarinder, adding that this would alienate Kissan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee (Piddi) from the people.

He cautioned the Committee against taking such a harsh stand, which could lead to them losing the support of the masses, who had so far wholeheartedly backed the farmers’ agitation against the farm laws. “When the state government and every person in Punjab has been extending their full support to the farmers, why is this Union taking a stance against their own state?” he asked.

Given that both the Centre and the other farmers’ unions had taken conciliatory steps to resolve the crisis triggered by the agricultural laws, the Kissan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee (Piddi) should not do anything to derail the process of negotiation and discussion, he added. It was in the interest of all, including the farmers themselves, to find a solution to the problems unleashed by the central laws, on which every section of Punjab’s populace, as well as his government, was standing shoulder to shoulder with the farming community, said the Chief Minister.

The message that was emanating from the stand of the Kissan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee (Piddi) was that the union was not really interested in breaking the stalemate on the farm laws issue, Captain Amarinder said. In any case, said the Chief Minister, blocking a one-odd track would serve no purpose even for the Committee, which, incidentally, had chosen to stay away from the meeting convened by him on Saturday to urge the farm unions to lift their blockade.

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