Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani in an exclusive conversation with media on Sunday said that no lockdown will be imposed in the state for now. Speaking at India TV’s Swasthya Sammelan 2021, CM Rupani, however, emphasised night curfew is necessary to control the spread of virus. “We will not impose lockdown in Gujarat for now…Efforts are on to control the spread of virus,” Gujarat CM said. On being asked about the vaccination drive, the Chief Minister said, “Vaccination drive is underway, we will win the fight against the pandemic.”
West Bengal BJP chief Dilip Ghosh on Sunday said more Cooch Behar-like killings may happen in the next phase of assembly elections if “naughty boys like the ones who died in Sitalkuchi” try to take the law into their hands. Addressing an election rally at Baranagar in the North 24 Parganas district, Ghosh said, “Naughty boys received bullets at Sitalkuchi. If anyone dares to take the law into his hands, this will happen to him also.” He further said that naughty boys, who had presumed that the rifles of the central forces were just for a show during election duty, will not dare repeat the same mistake after seeing what happened in Sitalkuchi.
West Bengal: Congress leader Sandeep Dikshit on Sunday, termed the Model code of conduct as ‘Modi code of conduct’
Slamming the apex poll body, Congress leader Sandeep Dikshit on Sunday, termed the Model code of conduct as ‘Modi code of conduct’. Alleging a tacit agreement between RSS and the Election Commission (EC), Dikshit said that the EC should consider itself as a branch of RSS, shifting its headquarters to Nagpur. Congress and TMC have slammed the EC for the Cooch Behar killings where 4 were killed by CISF. Bengal’s remaining poll phases will be held on April 17, April 22, April 26, and April 29 with results to be announced on May 2.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is hugely popular in West Bengal – Prashant Kishor’s audio clip goes viral
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Amit Malviya on Saturday shared several clips of Mamata Banerjee’s polls strategist Prashant Kishor, following which a row has erupted. In the audio clip, Kishor could be heard saying the internal survey of Trinamool Congress (TMC) is showing that the saffron party is winning the assembly elections. “In a public chat on Club House, Mamata Banerjee’s election strategist concedes that even in TMC’s internal surveys, BJP is winning. The vote is for Modi, polarisation is a reality, the SCs (27% of WB’s population), Matuas are all voting for the BJP!” tweeted Malviya. In his first response to the damning tweets, Mr Kishor dared the BJP to release the full transcript of the chat on Clubhouse, an invitation-only social media app that enables audio discussions on chatrooms. He also tweeted: “They should show courage and share the full chat instead of getting excited with selective use of parts of it. I have said this before and repeating again – BJP will not to CROSS 100 in WB. Period.”
Delhi police has summoned Yati Narsinghanand for allegedly making inflammatory comments against the Prophet and Islam
Delhi Police on Friday summoned Yati Narsinghanand Saraswati, head priest of Dasna Devi temple in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad. The priest is accused of hurting religious sentiments with his remarks on the Prophet during a press conference in Delhi last week. Yati Narsinghanand has been asked to appear for questioning as soon as possible. Delhi Police had registered an FIR against the priests after taking suo moto cognizance of the video of his press conference.
Ahead of Bengal’s fourth phase of polls, political strategist Prashant Kishor announced on Friday, that he will enter politics in the near future, in conversation with Republic Media Network Editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami on Nation Wants to Know. Kishor, who currently manages the political campaign Mamata Banerjee, MK Stalin and has been roped in by Capt. Amarinder Singh as a political advisor to Punjab CM, has stated that he will re-enter politics in a couple of years, shrugging off his initial failure at elections. Kishor was previously, JDU’s Vice-president after successfully getting CM Nitish Kumar re-elected in 2015.
Samajwadi Party MP Jaya Bachchan, in Bengal to campaign on behalf of Mamata Banerjee and the Trinamool Congress, came out guns blazing at her first press conference, reminding voters that Ms Banerjee was “fighting to preserve the democratic right of every Bengali” and warning rival political parties – she did not name any – against “hijacking my religion… democratic rights”. “I have the utmost love and respect for Mamataji – a single woman fighting against all atrocities… a single woman fighting against everyone else. She has a broken leg, but nothing is going to stop her,” Ms Bachchan, a Bengali by birth, and a four-term Rajya Sabha MP from Uttar Pradesh, said.
Jaya Bachchan will speak against BJP but she will never say anything against me – Babul Supriyo, BJP
Union Minister Babul Supriyo on Monday said Samajwadi Party (SP) MP Jaya Bachchan, who is likely to campaign for TMC candidates in the West Bengal Assembly polls, might speak against BJP but will never say anything against him. “I welcome her (Jaya Bachchan) in West Bengal. Though I do not have family relations with her, she knows me very well. She will speak against BJP but she will never say anything against me,” Mr Supriyo told media.
Samajwadi Party (SP) MP and veteran actor Jaya Bachchan on Monday campaigned in West Bengal for Trinamool Congress (TMC) chief Mamata Banerjee and said that the chief minister is fighting for the democratic rights of the people in the state. Bachchan said that she is campaigning for Mamata Banerjee and TMC on the instructions of her party chief Akhilesh Yadav, who has been speaking against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) since losing state elections in Uttar Pradesh against it. The BJP has challenged the TMC, vowing to unseat Banerjee from power in West Bengal.
A day after the BJP alleged the involvement of TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee in a coal pilferage case, he on Monday dared the Central government to initiate a probe against “all culprits”. “All coal assets fall directly under Centre & are guarded by the Central agencies. If BJP thinks TMC leaders got money from those illegally operating the coal assets, then what’s stopping Centre from investigating all culprits who failed to manage these national assets?” the Diamond Harbour MP said.
Prashant Kishor had announced that he would quit Twitter if the BJP crossed the double-figure mark. He had also challenged BJP leaders to announce that they would relinquish their positions if they failed to get 200 seats. “Politics of Bengal are different from other States…It’s a unique election because in the last 30-35 years, the ruling party in Bengal has not been challenged by a national ruling party… When the Left was in power, they were never challenged by the ruling Congress. This is the first time that Bengal is witnessing a regional ruling party being challenged by a national ruling party, which is out there to win at any cost,” analyses the poll analyst. He said he stood by his earlier assessment that the BJP cannot cross the double-digit mark.
West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee pulled out the ‘gotra’ card during the last leg of campaigning in Nandigram and declared that she is ‘Shandilya’. Now, BJP and AIMIM leaders have targeted Mamata Banerjee saying this is desperation speaking. As Mamata Banerjee downed the curtains on the final campaign in Nandigram, where she is pitted in a high-octane battle against her former confidante Suvendu Adhikari, she signed off saying her gotra is ‘Shandilya’. “I visited a temple where the priest asked me my ‘gotra’. I told him – Maa Maati Manush, but actually, I’m Shandilya,” said Mamata Banerjee.
“I visited a temple where the priest asked me my ‘gotra’. I told him – Maa Maati Manush, but actually, I’m Shandilya,” said Mamata Banerjee. Reacting to the ‘gotra’ remark, BJP leader Giriraj Singh said, “Due to fear of losing polls, Mamata Didi has told her gotra. Didi, just tell me, if Shandilya is also the gotra of Rohingyas and infiltrators. She’s scared now, that’s why sometimes she’s attacking BJP workers like Suvendu and sometimes using her gotra.”
AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi has said, “What should happen to people like me who aren’t Shandilya or Janeudhari, aren’t bhakts of certain gods, don’t recite Chalisa or any Path? Every party feels that it has to show its Hindu credentials to win. Unprincipled, insulting and unlikely to succeed.” Mamata Banerjee, who is campaigning across Bengal riding a wheelchair following her leg injury, also stood up for the first time in 20 days for the national anthem on Tuesday.
While campaigning in Chirang ahead of the Assembly Elections in Assam, Home Minister Amit Shah vowed to fulfil every single promise made in Bodo agreement before 2022 “for a peaceful Assam”. “Rahul Baba is in Assam as a tourist nowadays. He says Badruddin Ajmal is Assam’s identity. You tell me if Ajmal is Assam’s identity or Bhupen Hazarika, Upendra Nath & Shankar Dev. Black Mountain Badruddin Ajmal can’t be Assam’s identity,” the Home Minister said.
Former cricketer and Bharatiya Janata Party’s candidate from Moyna in West Bengal’s Purba Medinipur, Ashoke Dinda has been provided Y+ security cover, day after he was allegedly attacked during an election campaign in West Bengal. Ashoke Dinda was allegedly attacked and his vehicle was vandalised when he was returning from a roadshow ahead of phase 2 of the West Bengal Assembly election on April 1.
Accusing West Bengal BJP of creating a fake survey showing Mamata Banerjee losing from Nandigram, Prashant Kishor’s consultancy firm Indian Political Action Committee (I-PAC) issued a statement calling it fake and said the saffron party was using fake surveys in I-PAC’s name to keep the morale of their workers up. The fake survey went viral on social media showing West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee losing from the Nandigram seat.
Poll strategist Prashant Kishor says Bengal is a fight CM Mamata & PM Narendra Modi where turncoats don’t matter
Poll strategist Prashant Kishor says that Bengal is a fight between Chief Minister Mamata and Prime Minister Narendra Modi and turncoats don’t matter. He explains how BJP creates fear before a contest, and warns that if the TMC loses Bengal, India will be headed for one nation, one party, with the BJP controlling people’s lives. In an interview, Kishor said, “Around November-December last year, there was a lot of hype being created around the BJP, that they are going to sweep the State, get 200 seats, etc. So, it was important for us to say publicly that this is not true… There is no way that in December the BJP was in a position to be winning 200 seats.”
Agroup of farmers thrashed a BJP MLA, tore his clothes and threw black ink at him in Malout in Punjab’s Muktsar district on Saturday. BJP’s Abohar MLA Arun Narang along with other local leaders were surrounded by a group of protesting farmers in Malout where had gone to address a press conference. The protesters were already waiting near the BJP office in the area for Arun Narang to arrive. On his arrival, the protesting farmers threw black ink at him which also stained his car. Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), BJP and the ruling Congress in Punjab condemned the incident.
A group of protesters, said to be farmers, threw a black-coloured liquid on the BJP MLA from Abohar on Saturday evening, allegedly thrashed him and tore his clothes when he was travelling to the venue of a scheduled press meet at Malout town in Muktsar district, Punjab. A police official fell to the ground while trying to save the legislator from the protesters’ ire. The melee continued for 15-20 minutes before police were able to rescue the MLA, Arun Narang, and take him to the safety of a shop about 100 metres from the BJP office. Narang told media that he was “punched” by some people. “I was punched a lot and my clothes were also torn off,” he alleged. An FIR has been registered against 250-300 unknown protesters under Section 307 (attempt to murder) and other relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). An investigation is underway to identify the accused, police said.
On MVA alliance amid political turmoil in Maharashtra, state Congress chief Nana Patole said that the government will run for 5 years and BJP’s allegations do not matter. He said, “There will be no problem. ‘Ye Fevicol ka mazboot jod hai’. The government will go on for 5 years. They (BJP) may level as many false allegations as they want, it won’t affect the govt. They’re trying to malign Maharashtra, people of the state won’t forgive them.”
Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra on Friday slammed Union Home Minister Amit Shah for his remark that illegal infiltrators were eating up the rights and rations of the people of West Bengal. BJP leader Amit Shah had made the remark while addressing a rally in Purulia. Responding to Shah’s statement, Moitra said that Bangladesh’s economy is doing better than India , adding: “get both rations & rights back home”. She also claimed that the Indian government has failed to present infiltrator numbers’ in Parliament. “Bengalis share a border & a soul with B’desh,” added Moitra.
A BJP MLA in Punjab was allegedly thrashed and his clothes torn by a group of farmers at Malout in Muktsar district on Saturday, police said. BJP leaders have been facing the ire of farmers for the last several months in the state. Agitating farmers have been opposing the programmes of the saffron party leaders in Punjab over the farm laws issue. When Abohar legislator Arun Narang reached Malout on Saturday along with local leaders to address a press conference, they were surrounded by a group of protesting farmers, and black ink was thrown at them and at their vehicles, officials said.
Samant’s nationality or religion were never brought into the conversation – Anvee Bhutani on Rashmi Samant
Samant’s nationality or religion were never brought into the conversation, apart from when she brought them in herself, and this wasn’t a plot to try and conspire to remove her from office. The past two OUSU presidents have been women of colour and the current sabbatical team is also all women of colour, including other Indian and Hindu women.
In an interview to media, the Oxford University student said that foreign universities should have regulations to protect students of colour from being cancelled. Furthermore, Samant noted, that certain professors even found photos of her mother carrying a plaque that said ‘Jai Shree Ram’. “My mother has the freedom of expression, she has the right to practice her religion,” she added.
Rashmi Samant who was forced to resign from her position of President-elect of the Oxford University Student Union
The UK police and Oxford University have commenced investigations into complaints about bullying of Indian student Rashmi Samant, who was forced to resign from her position of President-elect of the Oxford University Student Union, amidst controversy over some of her past social media posts. Samant’s beliefs came under scrutiny when her old social media posts were found to be racist, homophobic and insensitive. While Samant acknowledged that she had alienated people within the Oxford student community through these posts and stepped down, she later claimed that her resignation was forced by racism and cyberbullying.
We wish to clarify that this is not why Ms Samant had to resign – Oxford Statement on Rashmi Samant’s Resignation
We unequivocally condemn all forms of discrimination based on, but not limited to, race, religion, national origin, caste, sex, sexual orientation and gender identity. We recognize that a culture of institutional racism is prevalent in the University, and that racism is a lived reality for several members of the University, including brown students. It is with utmost caution, therefore, that we wish to clarify that this is not why Ms Samant had to resign, and by that, we mean that neither her nationality nor her religion are what prompted the calls for her resignation.
Former IPS officer & BJP’s candidate from Debra, Bharati Ghosh, is the richest among candidates in Bengal polls
Former IPS officer and BJP’s candidate from Debra, Bharati Ghosh, is the richest among candidates in fray in the second phase of Bengal polls, says a report released by the West Bengal Election Watch, a civil society group. Ghosh has declared assets worth more than Rs 19.21 crore. Ghosh, once known for her proximity to chief minister Mamata Banerjee, switched to the BJP in February 2019. She was fielded by BJP from Ghatal Lok Sabha constituency the same year but lost to Trinamul candidate and film actor Deepak Adhikari.
Amravati MP Navneet Rana on Monday wrote to Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, accusing Shiv Sena MP Arvind Sawant of threatening her after she raised the Sachin Waze issue in the House. “The way Shiv Sena MP Arvind Sawant has threatened me, it is not only my insult, but the insult of all the women of the country. Hence, I demand strict action against Sawant,” she added. She also sought police action against the south Mumbai MP.
In another gaffe within a fortnight after assuming office, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Tirath Singh Rawat said the “United States ruled India for 200 years”. It was the third comment in a week for which Rawat has been trolled. Earlier, Rawat was trolled for his comment on ripped jeans and equating Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Lord Ram. Uttarakhand Chief Minister said: “As compared to other countries, India is managing Covid 19 crisis better. America, who ruled us for 200 years and ruled the world, is struggling during pandemic. Over 3,75 lakh people died in USA. In Italy, having best health facility in world, lost over 50 lakh people lives and heading for another lock down.”
Kerala Congress vice president KC Rosakutty resigned from the party on Monday. Former MLA from Sulthan Bathery constituency and chairperson of the Kerala Women’s Commission, Rosakutty was reportedly unhappy with the present developments in the party. Rosakutty’s resignation comes a few days after Kerala Congress’s women wing president Lathika Subhash resigned and shaved off her head at the KPCC headquarters in protest after being denied a ticket for the upcoming state assembly elections.
Rosakutty said she will be working with the Communist Party of India (Marxist)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF)
In yet another blow to the Congress in Kerala, another senior leader KC Rosakutty, who is also the Vice President of the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC), has resigned from the party. She cited women being ignored by the party in the polls for her decision. Hours after she announced her resignation, Rosakutty said she will be working with the Communist Party of India (Marxist)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF). She was the former MLA of Sulthan Bathery Assembly constituency in the ninth Kerala Assembly. Announcing her decision, Rosakutty said that the Congress ignored the women in the party.
Congress ignored G-23 members in West Bengal Star Campaigner list except Manish Tewari & Jitin Prasada
The Congress released its list of star campaigners for the third phase of the West Bengal elections on Monday. The 30-leader list included prominent Congress leaders like Sonia Gandhi, Manmohan Singh, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi. The G23 faction, comprises Congress veterans like Ghulam Nabi Azad, Kapil Sibal, Anand Sharma, among others. Last year, this group of 23 senior Congress leaders wrote a strongly worded letter to party president Sonia Gandhi, raising questions over the manner in which the party is being led.
Independent MP from Amravati, Navneet Rana, has accused Shiv Sena MP Arvind Sawant of threatening her in the Lok Sabha lobby. In a letter to Speaker Om Birla, she said that she was threatened with arrest after she raised the Sachin Vaze matter in the Parliament. In her letter, Navneet Rana has said that Arvind Sawant threatened her saying, “Tu Maharashtra mein kaise ghoomti hai main dekhta hun aur tere ko bhi jail mein daalenge (Let me see how you roam around in Mumbai, will put you in jail too).”
E Sreedharan, fondly known as ‘Metro man’ for his role in building the Delhi Metro spoke to media about how BJP has emerged in Kerala, the 88-year-old technocrat said that BJP’s growth trajectory in the state has been commendable. In the last 7 years, the growth of the BJP in Kerala has been tremendous. The results of the upcoming election will show how BJP has grown in the last few years.
Top Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi has teared into the ranks of the BJP over the issue of rising unemployment in Assam. Priyanka Gandhi, who is in Assam on a two day tour for election campaigning slammed the BJP Governments both at the Centre and the State for the rising rate of unemployment. Taking a dig at the BJP-AGP alliance, Priyanka Gandhi said that AGP is no longer Asom Gana Parishad, it is rather “Dilli Gana Parishad”. “Even the Asom Gana Parishad has been converted to Dilli Gana Parishad. The elephant once is now a bhigi billi (terrified cat),” Priyanka Gandhi said.
Ever since his entry into the election fray as the BJP candidate in Palakkad, ‘Metroman’ E Sreedharan has managed to garner eyeballs. His constituency visits are well-attended and photo-ops during the campaigning are never missed.Minor controversies, like the viral photos of voters washing his feet, notwithstanding, the BJP has so far managed to cash in on the 88-year-old’s image and fan following. But whether his charisma will help the party win a few seats in the state is a million dollar question, the answer to which will be known only after the votes are counted on May 2.
Trinamool Congress (TMC) MP Sisir Adhikari on Sunday joined the rival Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Adhikari’s son, Suvendu Adhikari, was a close aide of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee who had defected to the BJP last December. The development comes as a big blow to Banerjee’s TMC mere days before the Assembly election in West Bengal. Adhikari, who represents the parliamentary constituency of Kanthi, shared a stage with Union Minister Amit Shah on Sunday at Egra in Purba Medinipur.
Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh to file defamation case against former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh
Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh on Saturday said he will file a defamation case against former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh, who has levelled explosive allegations of corruption and interference in police work against the minister. “All the allegations made by Parambir Singh are false, he should prove them. I’m filing a defamation case against him,” Mr Deshmukh said in a statement. Mr Singh, in a letter to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, said Mr Deshmukh had been using police officers – including Sachin Waze who has been arrested in the Mukesh Ambani bomb scare case – to extort money from restaurants, pubs, bars and hookah parlours in the city. He alleged that the minister had set a target of ₹ 100 crore per month for the officers in February.
Maharashtra Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) named Sachin Vaze as the main accused in Mansukh Hiren’s death case
The Maharashtra Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) has named suspended assistant police inspector Sachin Vaze as the main accused in Mansukh Hiren’s death case. Sachin Waze was provided with SIM cards by a bookie which was used to commit the crime, said officials. Earlier, the ATS arrested two persons in connection with the Mansukh Hiren death case. Suspended Mumbai Police constable Vinayak Shinde (55) and a bookie Naresh Dhare (31) were arrested by the Maharashtra ATS on Sunday.
Nationalist Congress Party Maharashtra president Jayant Patil said there is no question of replacing home minister Anil Deshmukh following the allegations levelled against him by former police commissioner Param Bir Singh. “The letter is a reaction after Maharashtra Chief Minister and home minister decided to take a tough stand,” the state minister said. “If we ask Deshmukh to resign now, we would be doing what certain people want,” Patil told media.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) continued its attack on the ruling three-party coalition in Maharashtra, saying it should be renamed ‘Maharashtra Vasooli Aghadi’. The comment was made by BJP leader CT Ravi in the wake of extortion allegations made by former Mumbai top cop Param Bir Singh against Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh. “I think Maharashtra is governed by ‘Maharashtra Vasooli Aghadi’. We demand CBI inquiry and his removal from the cabinet,” Ravi said.
BJP leader and former Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis has sought the resignation of state Home Minister Anil Deshmukh after former Mumbai Police chief alleged the ruling party’s minister “set a target to collect 100 crore a month”. “We demand the Home Minister’s resignation. If he doesn’t, then the Chief Minister must remove him. An impartial probe must be conducted. The letter also says the Chief Minister was informed about this earlier, so why didn’t he act on it?” Mr Fadnavis, Leader of the Opposition in Maharashtra, told reporters shortly after the letter surfaced in the media.
Leader of opposition in Maharashtra assembly, Devendra Fadnavis, on Sunday questioned chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar’s “silence” on corruption allegations levelled against state home minister Anil Deshmukh by former Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh. “Why are CM and DCM silent on the allegations levelled by Singh,” former Maharashtra chief minister said and demanded that Deshmukh be sacked so that an impartial probe is conducted into the matter.
NCP president Sharad Pawar on Sunday said the allegations leveled by former Mumbai Police chief Param Bir Singh against Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Dehsmukh are serious and require an in-depth probe. The NCP chief said he has spoken to Thackeray regarding Singh’s letter. “I would suggest to Uddhav Thackeray to seek former IPS officer Julio Ribeiro’s help for looking into the claims made by Param Bir Singh,” he added. NCP supremo said there is no impact on the MVA government because of Singh’s allegations. Efforts are on to destabilise the Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress government in Maharashtra but they will prove futile, he added.
Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Sunday called for a “fair and impartial probe by an outside agency” into the controversy surrounding Mumbai policeman Sachin Waze and his alleged patronisation by top leaders of the ruling Shiv Sena-NCP combine in Maharashtra. “Pawar is not a part of the government. Moreover, the so- called briefing makes it amply clear that he is aware of the serious charges against a member of his party. As a party chief, what action is he going to take”, Prasad asked.
Julio Riberio’s credibility is such that no one can interfere or influence his investigation – Sharad Pawar
Nationalist Congress chief Sharad Pawar has advised a special investigation into former Mumbai police chief Param Bir Singh’s allegations against Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh. The investigator he suggested was Julio Ribeiro – the former Mumbai top cop, who eventually became the chief of Gujarat and Punjab police and eventually named India’s ambassador to Romania. “Julio Riberio’s credibility is such that no one can interfere or influence his investigation,” Mr Pawar said amid a huge political storm unleashed by a letter of Mr Singh – sent immediately after he was transferred to the Home Guards.
Former Bengal minister and BJP’s assembly poll candidate from Domjur, Rajib Banerjee, was on Sunday shown black flags by TMC supporters in the constituency, when he was out campaigning from door to door with other activists of his party, police sources said. Several agitators, holding posters that referred to Banerjee as a “traitor”, also blocked his way and raised slogans against him, prompting the police to mildly lathicharge them, the sources said.
Even if the AIADMK emerged victorious in a single seat, the victor would be a ‘BJP MLA’ and hence people should vote for his party and its allies in the April 6 Assembly elections, DMK president M K Stalin appealed to the electorate on Sunday. In his campaign at Uthiramerur, Stalin said he had been saying that his party-led combine would win 200 out of 234 segments in Tamil Nadu. However, considering the feedback from the people to his continuous campaign across the state, the DMK top leader said, “Only we are going to win in all the 234 constituencies.”
Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee on Sunday blamed herself for not recognising the “true face” of the influential Adhikari family of Purba Medinipur district. Venting her ire against Suvendu Adhikari, her protege-turned-rival who is pitted against the TMC leader from Nandigram constituency for the coming assembly polls, Banerjee said at an election rally, she had even heard rumours the Adhikari family had built an empire worth Rs 5,000 crore.
Priyanka Gandhi alleged that PM Modi is sad about a tweet by a 22-year-old woman but not for the flood-ravaged people of Assam
Launching a frontal attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Sunday alleged he is sad about a tweet by a 22-year-old woman but not for the flood-ravaged people of Assam. A day after Modi raised the toolkit issue and alleged Congress conspiracy in it at a poll rally in Chabua in Assam, the daughter of late Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, lamented that Modi was silent on peoples’ suffering during perennial floods. Last year’s flooding of the Brahmaputra during the pandemic affected some 2.8 million people.
Left criticised BJP Palakkad (Kerala) candidate ‘Metro Man’ E Sreedharan after photos of voters washing his feet went viral
BJP candidate from Palakkad in Kerala, E Sreedharan has landed on the receiving end of sharp criticism from the Left. More popularly known as ‘Metro Man’, Sreedharan joined the BJP last month and was declared the party’s candidate from Palakkad in the April 6 Kerala assembly elections. Trouble began for E Sreedharan (88) on Sunday after images of voters touching and washing his feet went into wide circulation on social media. The pictures were reportedly clicked during ‘Metro Man’ Sreedharan’s election campaign in Palakkad. In one picture, a voter was seen kneeling before Sreedharan while another shows a man wiping his feet with a cloth.
Senior Congress leader and former Chief Minister of Puducherry V Narayanasamy on Sunday said he was not contesting the April 6 Assembly elections as there was a need to coordinate poll-related works and programmes of the party in the Union Territory. He told reporters at the PCC office here that the president of the Pradesh Congress Committee A V Subramanian was contesting the poll from Karaikal (north) and so he (Narayanasamy), along with the Congress Member of Parliament V Vaithilingam, had to coordinate election-related party activities.
Delay in Metro Railway Project is due to indifference of Maharashtra Government – BJP MP from Mumbai North East Manoj Kotak
In recent developments, BJP MP from Mumbai North East Manoj Kotak has stated that the delay in the metro railway project is due to the indifference of the Maharashtra government. Moreover, the relocation of the metro car shed has further increased the delay and hence the cost of the project is also increasing. In a statement at the Lok Sabha, Kotak further stated that Prime Minister Narendra Modi worked to give impetus to metro rail schemes in different cities for the development of metros further adding that if there was a BJP government in any state, then metro projects were carried out.
BJP MP Manoj S Kotak in the Lok Sabha on Friday urged the government to regulate OTT platforms, claiming some of the contents on them promote violence, drug abuse and also portray Hindu deities in poor light. Raising the issue during Zero Hour in the Lok Sabha, Manoj Kotak (BJP) said some web series in the name of freedom of expression promote violence, drug abuse. Over-the-top media services (OTT) platforms have spread across the country and the contents on them do not come under the purview of the Censor board. Some of them also depict Hindu deities in an objectional manner, he said.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday urged the Centre to allow the Aam Aadmi Party’s doorstep ration delivery scheme in the national capital. Addressing the media here, Kejriwal said that the doorstep ration delivery scheme will not have any name and that the city government will not take any credit for it. “Ready to accept all conditions of Centre but will not allow any obstructions,” he said, adding that objective is to neutralise the mafia that operates in the city.
Former Puducherry CM V Narayanasamy on Saturday refuted reports claiming that the Congress party has not given hum a ticket for the upcoming assembly polls in the union territory. “Some media reports stated I am not fighting election because high command didn’t give a ticket to me which is untrue. Sonia Gandhi asked me to fight the election,” V Narayanasamy said.
In poll-bound Tamil Nadu, DMK chief Stalin addressed a public rally in Tirunelveli. Addressing the rally, he said: “I am Stalin, son of Karunanidhi, will do what my father did. We will fulfil what we have promised. Our election manifesto is a hero while theirs (AIADMK) is a villain, and a comedy piece”.
While PM Modi addressed a rally in Assam’s Chabua, Rahul Gandhi was in poll-bound state’s Jorhat district. He hit out at the NDA government and said, “During UPA govt, gas cylinders’ cost was Rs 400, now under NDA, it is Rs 900. Who benefits from this? Not the poor, only India’s 2-3 industrialists. Their taxes, loans are waived off while nothing is being done for you”.
Maharashtra minister and Shiv Sena leader Aaditya Thackeray on Saturday said that he has tested positive for Covid-19. Aadtiya, the son of Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray, said that he had mild symptoms of Covid and requested everyone who came in contact with him to get themselves tested.
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has tested positive for Covid-19, the country’s health minister said on Saturday, two days after the premier got his vaccination. Khan is “self isolating at home,” said minister Faisal Sultan in a tweet.
PV Narasimha Rao’s Daughter Surabhi Vani Devi won Election from Mahbubnagar-Rangareddy-Hyderabad Graduates’ MLC Constituency
TRS candidate Surabhi Vani Devi, daughter of former Prime Minister late PV Narasimha Rao, won the election from Mahbubnagar-Rangareddy-Hyderabad Graduates’ MLC constituency by a margin of 36,580 votes over her nearest BJP rival N Ramchander Rao on Saturday. The counting of votes that continued for the fourth consecutive day was completed late Saturday evening. The election officials, however, are yet to declare the result officially.
Actor couple Neel Bhattacharya and Trina Bhattacharya joined the Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Saturday, ahead of the West Bengal state assembly election. They were inducted into the party in the presence of TMC general secretary Partha Chatterjee. The husband-wife joined a league of other Tollywood actors, including June Malia and SayGhosh, who are backing Mamata Banerjee’s party this poll season. Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress, after the mass exodus witnessed in the last few months, welcomed new members to the party. Actors Saayoni Ghosh, June Malia, Sudeshna Roy, Manali De, and director Raj Chakraborty were some of the celebrities who entered politics with TMC.
West Bengal Assembly with 294 seats will also go to the polls from May 2, 2021. CM Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress holds 222 seats at present. However, BJP has made major inroads in the state in the Lok Sabha elections winning 18 seats out of 42 and establishing itself as the major opposition force in the state. The BJP is using its booth-level strategy and has regularly dispatched its top leaders including Amit Shah and JP Nadda in the state for winning the upcoming elections, with the Prime Minister also addressing mega-rallies there in recent weeks. The party has also been inducting a number of major TMC leaders on a regular basis and plans to hold at least 1500 rallies and assorted road-shows in total.
Indian National Congress (INC) leader Rahul Gandhi released the party manifesto Saturday, ahead of the Assam assembly election 2021. Key promises made include monetary compensation for housewives across the state, an anti-Citizenship Amendment Act law and an increase in wages for tea plantation workers.
Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh Thursday expressed confidence that Navjot Singh Sidhu will be back in his Cabinet, nearly two years after the cricketer-turned-politician quit the government after being divested of a key portfolio. “Everyone wants Navjot to be part of our team,” Mr Singh told a press conference on Thursday, replying to a question on the meeting. Singh’s statement came a day after the two Congress leaders met at the chief minister’s farmhouse, where they had discussed Mr Sidhu’s possible reinduction into the state Cabinet.
In a spirited defence of the Centre’s farm laws during his campaign for the April 6 Tamil Nadu assembly polls, AIADMK top leader and Chief Minister K Palaniswami on Friday said his party opposed aspects like cess and levy for farmers but the DMK ‘supported’ them. “Stalin is trying to hoodwink people and somehow capture power,” he added. Blaming DMK over issues including Cauvery, he accused Stalin of keeping in mind the interests of of his family alone and not that of the people.
I am sure he will decide on what is in favour of Party & the State – Punjab CM Amarinder Singh after Meeting Navjot Singh Sidhu
Even after Wednesday’s crucial tea meeting that went on for nearly 50 minutes between Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh and his bête noire Navjot Singh Sidhu, the possibility of latter’s reinduction into the state cabinet continue to remain uncertain. “It was a good meeting. We have a cordial relation and I am waiting for him to reply. I am sure he will decide on what is in favour of the party and the state. As far as the Congress is concerned, the party wants him back fast and play an active role for the benefit of the party and the state.” said Amarinder Singh on being asked about the meeting.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday upped the ante against its former ally Shiv Sena over the arrest of Mumbai cop Sachin Vaze in connection with the Antilia bomb scare case. Senior party leader Narayan Singh Rane has claimed that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray is the “godfather of the arrested cop” and that he should quit forthwith. “Chief Minister is the godfather of Sachin Vaze. He should resign,” he told media. Rane said that Vaze was suspended from the duty, but “it was the Chief Minister who reinstated him and gave him the charge of the Crime Intelligence Unit”. “Vaze was reinstated to the police department only because of the Chief Minister,” the former Maharashtra CM added.
All India Jat Mahasabha (AIJM) appointed Dr Navjot Kaur Sidhu as President of its Women Wing in Punjab
All India Jat Mahasabha (AIJM) on Wednesday appointed former MLA Dr Navjot Kaur Sidhu, wife of Congress leader and former minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, as president of its women wing in Punjab. Announcing her appointment at a press conference in Chandigarh, AIJM national vice-president and Punjab unit chief Harpal Singh Harpura said, “She will work to strengthen the organisation in the state. The decision to appoint her was taken by the national executive at a meeting in Delhi last week.” Punjab chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh is the national president of AIJM.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday released another list of candidates for Bengal Assembly Elections 2021 last four phases. The list includes names of former Union minister Mukul Roy, Lok Sabha member Jagannath Sarkar, former state unit chief Rahul Sinha, footballer Kalyan Choubey and folk singer Ashim Sarkar. Bengal elections will be held in 8 phases beginning March 27 while the final phase will be held on April 29. The counting of votes will take place on May 2.
Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Thursday said that the state government would implement the new National Education Policy by 2025. He said in the state assembly here that with the introduction of Aadhaar-linked admissions, the number of children enrolled in government schools have come down by two lakh as their names were enrolled in both private and government schools. “We will implement the New Education Policy by 2025,” Khattar said. He said that the state government in its last tenure passed an Act in the Legislative Assembly for securing services of these guest or temporary teachers up to the age of 58 years.
‘Triggered’ by TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee’s ‘irritation’ to the chant of Jai Shri Ram, actor Arun Govil, who played the role of Lord Ram in the famous TV serial Ramayan, joined the BJP on Thursday. He will not contest the elections, the BJP said, but will campaign for the party. With this move, the party is seen to aim for right-wing voters in the states where elections will be held starting March 27. Govil joined the BJP in the presence of its general secretary Arun Singh and Union Minister Debasree Chaudhuri after the party announced the names of 148 candidates for the West Bengal assembly polls. Govil, who essayed the role of Lord Ram on Ramanand Sagar’s superhit 1987 series Ramayan, also said the BJP will give him a “platform” to do his bit to serve the nation. Apart from Ramayan, Govil, 63, has played leads in several Hindi, Bhojpuri, Odia and Telugu films. He has also played supporting characters. He is, however, mostly known for his roles in mythological movies.
Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar on Thursday met Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in Lucknow. The actor is shooting for his upcoming action-adventure drama “Ram Setu” in Ayodhya. “Ram Setu” is produced by Kumar’s Cape of Good Films, Abundantia Entertainment, Lyca Productions and Amazon Prime Video. The film’s shoot is spread across multiple schedules over the next few months, with 80 per cent of the filming planned in Mumbai.
Within 1 Year all Physical Toll Booths in the Country will be Removed, collection will happen via GPS – Nitin Gadkari
Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday informed that all physical toll booths in the country will be removed and collections will happen via GPS-based system. “I want to assure the House that within one year all physical toll booths in the country will be removed. It means that toll collection will happen via GPS. The money will be collected based on GPS imaging (on vehicles),” he said.