09:02 am New Delhi: The Supreme Court-appointed interlocutors on Thursday again reached Shaheen Bagh to interact with the protesters. "The Supreme Court has extended a hand because this road is closed. Shaheen Bagh is intact and will remain. We just want to find out a solution, hence, we want you to gather at any wide area on the road and then we will discuss the things. By doing this you will remain to be in Shaheen Bagh," said senior lawyer Sadhna Ramachandran, who along with senior lawyer Sanjay Hegde reached at Shaheen Bagh to meet protesters. But her attempt to mellow down the anger of protesters went in vain as everyone started shouting that we won't shift. Thereafter, Hedge took the reigns of parleys and said: "The Supreme Court is saying that rights of protesters should remain untouched but at any other place". But again the protesting women denied to accept the offer and started putting their issues. "We are on the streets and sitting here for two months but no one came to us. This movement is not only for Shaheen Bagh but for the whole country. If the Shaheen Bagh shifts, it will weaken the movement across the nation," a woman said.Replying to this, Hegde said: "You are worried that if you people shift from here then no one will come to talk to you. But I ensure you that till we are there no one can stop your hearing in the Supreme Court". But the protesters collectively reiterated that if the government revokes the Act, we will end our protest."This government has forced us to sit on the road. We are thankful to you that you came here. Now, you ask the government to roll back this Act," a protester said. Thereafter, Ramachandran said that we understand your concerns. But you should understand that the matter of the CAA and NRC in the Supreme Court. Now, it's up to the SC what decision it takes. Putting their final offer, Ramachandran said: "We will talk to 10-15 women on Friday. Talks can not be carry forwarded from an open stage. They (10-15 women) should come in the front. You chose the venue and make groups of 10-10 people so that we can talk. Otherwise, we won't come on Friday". Angered over the response, a protester told IANS: "There are not here to hold any dialogue. They just want to open the road. They are not concerned about our problems. They are telling us to talk in groups. What will we talk? 10 women will go and only one will speak". If they want to open the road then they should have done it earlier. We are saying this since the beginning that open the road that the police have blocked, she further said. Finally, Ramachandran said: "If we do not reach any conclusion then the matter will be forwarded to the Supreme Court and it will do the rest. Also, if it happens, the government will do what it wants, we won't be able to do anything". source:ians
09:02 am New Delhi: Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, better known as the Mahatma across the globe was a 'kattar sanatani' Hindu or so claims the RSS boss Mohan Bhagwat. In a book release event in New Delhi on Gandhi, Bhagwat called the father of the nation an 'unapologetic Hindu', someone who wasn't 'ashamed' of his religious identity, a comment that was seen as a dig by the RSS supremo. "He walked and travelled on train and connected to common people and then he thought about 'Bharatiyata'. This is the reason he was not ashamed of being a Hindu. He said he was a 'kattar sanatani' Hindu. His approach was to accept difference in diverse religions and find similarities," Bhagwat said. Speaking at the event, Bhagwat said in another 20 years, one can foresee India as Gandhi saw. He also stressed on Gandhi's honesty, vision and truth. He released the book 'Gandhi Ko Samajhne Ka Yahi Samay' penned by JS Rajput, a former NCERT Chief and someone who both the Sangh and the BJP are equally fond of. The Modi government nominated him to be the representative to the Executive Board of UNESCO. With Rajput, an educationist by his side, Bhagwat said, "In education, we should tell the truth. One should not teach what he thinks is convenient. Only truth should be taught." Though he backed Bhagwat's claim of Gandhi's trust in all thing 'sanatan', Rajput asserted his belief in diversity of religions. "How did Gandhi become Gandhi? He searched for ancient 'sanatan' ethos and found that that all religions are equal," Rajput told the audience. This hinduisation of the Mahatma seems to serve the larger Sangh Parivar's intent to associate the father of the nation with the 'sanatan' dharma in face of political assault from the Opposition led by the Congress that rakes up phrases like "idea of India" and "Gandhi's India" to counter the BJP and its ideological mentor Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. source:ians
03:02 pm The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is all set to extend throughout the country with a goal of connecting with one crore people. As part of the extension plan, senior party leader Gopal Rai said on Sunday, starting February 23, the party will launch a one-month massive campaign in all states.
03:02 pm Varanasi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said his government had taken decisions on Article 370 abrogating special status for J&K and the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in national interest. "These decisions had been pending for decades but we took them in national interest and we will remain firm on them," he said while addressing a function in Varanasi after unveiling a statue of BJP ideologue Deendayal Upadhyaya. The Prime Minister said that Deendayal Upadhyaya always focused on the last man in the line with his 'antyodaya' concept. "Our government is working on his concept of self-reliance and self-service. Our schemes like free gas connections and toilets cater to the poorest of the poor," he said.He said that the soul of Deendayal Upadhyaya would continue to inspire and bless them so that they could continue to work for the poor. "Projects worth Rs 25,000 crore have either been completed or are in the process of being completed in Varanasi and this is due to the blessings of Lord Shiva who has given me the responsibility of serving you. Projects worth Rs 12,000 crore that have been launched today include hospitals, schools, roads, flyovers and water projects. We are trying to turn western Uttar Pradesh into a medical hub with improved connectivity," he said. Modi said that when "we talk of a five trillion dollar economy in India, we must remember that tourism is a major part of it". "Besides nature, heritage tourism has a strong role to play in achieving the goal. Also, along with Varanasi other holy sites are being developed using new technologies. The Kashi Vishwanath temple complex will soon get a new attractive look. The Ram temple in Ayodhya will also turn into reality because the trust for construction has been formed," the Prime Minister said. He pointed out that Sri Lanka Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa, who recently visited Varanasi and Sarnath, was extremely impressed with the city. The Prime Minister hoped that the Deendayal Upadhyaya memorial will continue to inspire generations to come. The Prime Minister earlier flagged off the IRCTC's Maha Kaal Express through video link. The train will connect the three Jyotirling pilgrim centres of Varanasi, Ujjain and Omkareshwar. A two-day exhibition -- 'Kashi Ek Roop Anek' - was also inaugurated by the Prime Minister at Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya Hastakala Sankul where he interacted with buyers and artisans coming from different countries of the world including America, England and Australia. 'Kashi Ek Roop Anek' showcases products from over 100 artisans from all over Uttar Pradesh. Artists and weavers at the event will also be imparted skills for improving the quality and branding of their wares suitable to the larger national and international markets. source:ians
09:02 am Sanaa: A warplane belonging to the Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen has crashed in the northern province of al-Jawf, officials said. A coalition spokesman confirmed that a Saudi Tornado fighter jet had "fallen" while carrying out a support mission near Yemeni army units, the BBC reported citing a leading Saudi media outlet. Yemen's Houthi rebels said they shot down the plane on Friday night. The UNsaid 31 civilians were killed in Saudi air strikes in al-Jawf on Saturday. A statement from the office of the UN's resident coordinator for Yemen said "preliminary field reports" indicated that at least 12 others were injured in the strikes. The Saudi-led coalition has been battling Yemen's rebel Houthi movement since 2015. It intervened after the Houthis ousted the internationally-recognised government from power in the capital Sanaa. The Houthi rebels said they used ground-to-air missiles to down the warplane on Friday night. Saudi Arabia has not provided details of any casualties from the crash, or what caused it. It said it carried out a search and rescue operation on Saturday and that some civilians may have been unintentionally killed. Houthi officials said children were among the casualties of retaliatory air strikes by Saudi Arabia, which they said targeted civilians in the area where rebel forces had downed the plane. They said some of those injured were in a critical condition. In a statement on Saturday, Lise Grande, the UN's resident humanitarian coordinator in Yemen, shared "deep condolences with the families of those killed". "So many people are being killed in Yemen - it's a tragedy and it's unjustified. Under international humanitarian law parties which resort to force are obligated to protect civilians. Five years into this conflict and belligerents are still failing to uphold this responsibility. It's shocking," she said. source:ians
03:02 pm Former IAS officer and president of the People's Movement of Jammu & Kashmir (JKPM) group, Shah Faesal has been booked under the Public Safety Act (PSA). He is now one of the eight political leaders who had been charged under draconian law after Dr. Farooq Abdulla. Others who have been booked under PSA include Omar Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti, Ali Mohammad Sagar, Sartaj Madani, Hilal Lone, and Nayeem Akhtar.
05:02 pm Niwari (Madhya Pradesh):Terming the 2020 Delhi Assembly poll results "disappointing", Congress General Secretary Jyotiraditya Scindia on Thursday said that the party needs to reinvent itself with new ideology, new thinking and new ways of functioning.Speaking to media in Prithvipur area here, he said: "The results of the Delhi are very disappointing for the party... And new thinking, new ideology and new ways of functioning is required." Scindia, who himself lost from his family bastion of Guna in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, said that in the last 70 years the country has changed a lot. "And in the new era, we have to go to people with a new thinking," he said. Earlier, Congress spokesperson Sharmistha Mukherjee has also voiced her opinion publicly, saying "enough of introspection" and that it is "time for action now", blaming lack of strategy and unity at the state level."We are again decimated in Delhi. Enough of introspection, time for action now. Inordinate delay in decision making at the top, lack of strategy and unity at state level, demotivated workers, no grassroots connect - all are factors. Being part of the system, I too take my share of responsibility," Mukherjee said in a tweet on Tuesday, when the results of the Delhi assembly polls were announced. The Congress scored a nil in the 70-member Delhi assembly for the second consecutive time since 2015. This was the party's third dismal performance in the national capital. Despite ruling the city for 15 years from 1998 to 2013, it was reduced to eight seats in the 2013 Assembly polls. Mukherjee, who is the daughter of former President Pranab Mukherjee, also hit out at former Finance Minister P. Chidambaram after he, in a tweet, taunted the BJP over its defeat in Delhi, saying AAP won and the "bluff and bluster" lost. In her response, she said: "With due respect sir, just want to know - has Congress outsourced the task of defeating BJP to state parties? If not, then why are we gloating over AAP victory rather than being concerned about our drubbing? And if 'yes', then we might as well close shop."This is the first strong message from a Congress leader indicating that all is not well in the party. source:ians
03:02 pm Leader of the Aam Aadmi Party Arvind Kejriwal was elected on Wednesday by the MLAs as the leader of the AAP legislature party in the Assembly. Kejriwal was elected unopposed during a meeting at his residence with all the 62 MLAs.
08:02 pm Arvind Kejriwal led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has once again swept the polls winning 62 seats, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won 8 seats while the Congress failed to open its account for second time in a row in Delhi. The Delhi election results have once again confirmed that people make a clear distinction between state and national elections. In the general elections BJP won all the seven Lok Sabha seats while AAP was a distant third. People give more prominence to local issues than national ones, hence, different results. The development work carried out by Kejriwal and his team in education, health, transport, water, electricity and numerous other infrastructure developments seems to have struck a chord with the voters. While BJP went on an overdrive with Shaheen Bagh and CAA protests, AAP distanced itself from these controversial issues and focused fully on the work it carried out during the last five years. Furthermore, BJP didn’t name a chief ministerial candidate and relied heavily on national issues and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s popularity which didn’t pay off. It became more of a one man contest. The elections further reveal the perennial decline of Congress which now is a shadow of its former self. A party which ruled Delhi for 15 consecutive years and was a dominant force in national as well as regional politics is on the road to nowhere. It is time for Sonia Gandhi and think tanks to have a relook at their strategies. An election loss in Delhi will have a rippling effect in Bihar as well and for BJP it is an uphill task to gain power in the state. With BJP struggling to retain power in Maharashtra, Jharkhand and Delhi, Bihar may prove to be far tougher although they plan to fight the elections jointly with Nitish Kumar’s JDU. The country’s political landscape is fast changing over the last two years with BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) losing out in 6 states. The saffron footprint which in March 2018 covered over 75 per cent of India’s political landscape has been reduced to less than 35 per cent. Currently, the party is in power in Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka and North East states while all other areas have non-BJP governments. The party is in power in the centre for another four years but things could change rapidly if they don’t stem the tide. The alarm bells are ringing louder for J.P. Nadda and the time is apt for the party to relook, re-strategize and emerge stronger failing which it could go the Congress way and end up on the scrapheap.
04:02 pm On Monday, the government introduced the Institute of Teaching and Research in Ayurveda Act, 2020 in the Lok Sabha, which seeks to grant the status of an institution of national importance to a cluster of ayurvedic institutions on the campus of the University of Gujarat Ayurveda in Jamnagar. The three institutes which would be clubbed are Institute of Post Graduate Teaching and Research in Ayurveda, Gulab Kunverba Ayurveda Mahavidyalaya and Institute of Ayurveda Pharmaceutical Sciences. Congressman Shashi Tharoor also objected to Bill saying that it "failed to define the requirements for fulfilling the broader perspective."