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India is Asia’s deadliest country for journalists, says report from media watchdog

Nine of those killings took place in France, which was second only to Syria as the most dangerous country for the press in 2015, said the report, according to which 40 per cent journalists died at the hands of Islamic militant groups such as Al-Qaeda and Islamic State.

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Also ReadIndiaHere are 15 best New Year WhatsApp messagesIndiaCubs death: Shiv Sena wants forest minister Sudhir Mungantiwar to take moral responsibilityIndiaWoman raped inside Infosys campus in Pune by housekeeping staffIndiaWith one more engineer killed, Bihar getting unruly?IndiaKarti Chidambaram responds to DMK chief M Karunanidhi’s call for alliance with CongressIndiaGoa Governor pens song for ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Congress leaders hopeful of bouncing back to power in future<!– /.block –>Now you can order the Meizu m2 on Snapdeal<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
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‘Shrill’ debates in media overshadowing facts: Arun Jaitley

Referring to the latest data brought out by Registrar for Newspapers in India (RNI) in the report, he said newspapers have grown at over eight per cent and a large part of it is because of growth in regional newspapers.

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Also ReadIndiaHere are 15 best New Year WhatsApp messagesIndiaCubs death: Shiv Sena wants forest minister Sudhir Mungantiwar to take moral responsibilityIndiaWoman raped inside Infosys campus in Pune by housekeeping staffIndiaWith one more engineer killed, Bihar getting unruly?IndiaKarti Chidambaram responds to DMK chief M Karunanidhi’s call for alliance with CongressIndiaGoa Governor pens song for ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Recap 2015: 10 stories to know in & out of Volkswagen emission scam<!– /.block –>Australia defeat West Indies by 177 runs in thrilling finish, seal series 2-0<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
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Here are 15 best New Year WhatsApp messages

15. May your expectations in this New Year morning be realised with each and everyday of the year. This is to wish you a good health that will maintain the energy to flip your wing while soaring into greater heights towards your destiny.

dna Web Team

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Also ReadIndiaHere are 15 best New Year WhatsApp messagesIndiaCubs death: Shiv Sena wants forest minister Sudhir Mungantiwar to take moral responsibilityIndiaWoman raped inside Infosys campus in Pune by housekeeping staffIndiaWith one more engineer killed, Bihar getting unruly?IndiaKarti Chidambaram responds to DMK chief M Karunanidhi’s call for alliance with CongressIndiaGoa Governor pens song for ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Australia defeat West Indies by 177 runs in thrilling finish, seal series 2-0<!– /.block –>Cubs death: Shiv Sena wants forest minister Sudhir Mungantiwar to take moral responsibility<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
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Goa Governor pens song for ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’

The messages will also be sent to those with whom Sinha had meetings on ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ during the last 17 months, including voluntary organisations, municipal councils Chairmen, sarpanchs, college principals, hoteliers, industry captains, press personalities, real estate developers, hospital authorities, religious leaders, etc, the note added.

PTI
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White fly attack: Swaraj Abhiyan to fight case legally for Punjab farmers

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Yadav said that in the past few months he had visited 10 states in India which were drought affected and which were struck with famine like conditions.

Yogendra Yadav

Swaraj Abhiyan has decided to fight the case of Punjab farmers whose crops were destroyed in white fly attack in courts, and claimed the government cannot shirk its responsibility in the supply of “spurious” pesticides to the cotton growers.Stating this here this evening, Swaraj Abhiyan leader and national convenor of Jai Kisan Andolan Yogendra Yadav and Patiala MP Dharamvira Gandhi said noted Supreme Court lawyer and Abhiyan’s national leader Prashant Bhushan will meet the affected farmers and hold a legal camp at Bathinda on December 27 in this regard. Jai Kisan Andolan is a Swaraj Abhiyan-led farmers movement. “Bhushan will fight this case like innumerable other such cases free of cost,” Yadav said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Yadav said that in the past few months he had visited 10 states in India which were drought affected and which were struck with famine like conditions. “Swaraj Abhiyan after a detailed survey of these states had submitted memorandums to chief ministers of these states demanding immediate steps for the distressed. However, in the wake of inaction by these states, Parshant Bhushan ji knocked on the doors of Supreme Court on behalf of these drought affected farmers… “Now he will fight a case on behalf of the cotton farmers of Punjab and demand damages for massive loss to cotton crops in the state,” Yadav told reporters here.Both the leaders held the alleged anti-farmer policies and widespread corruption in the government machinery responsible for the white fly induced destruction of cotton crop in the state this year. “This is not a natural disaster. This is not a matter in which the government can extend some small relief measures to the farmers. This is a matter where the government is criminally culpable. Therefore, we have decided to take the matter of farmers crop loss to the court, not demand relief and compensation, but the damages which the government owes.”For this purpose, we have called a public hearing of the affected farmers in Bathinda on December 27, which Prashant Bhushan will attend. Here farmers will be invited and requested to join this petition and to file their cases to be taken to the court demanding damages,” Yadav said. Yadav, who was expelled from AAP, along with Bhushan, alleged, “This is a case involving criminal culpability of those in power. Therefore, we also demand that Agriculture Minister Tota Singh must resign because his continuing in power will seriously affect the nature of investigation in this case.” “This was not a natural disaster but a result of fake and spurious pesticides sold by the connivance of unscrupulous government officials, politicians and corporates,” Yadav said.A few days ago, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) held state-wide protests against the SAD-BJP regime, demanding resignation of Agriculture Minister Singh in connection with the pesticide scam. A top official of Punjab Agriculture Department had been arrested around two months ago for his alleged role in the supply of “spurious” pesticides to cotton growing farmers, whose crops was damaged in pest attack.The state government had also ordered a probe into the sale of “spurious” pesticides by a Special Investigation Team (SIT) comprising three Inspector Generals of Police under the direct supervision of Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) Crime.

Devendra Fadnavis announces Rs 10,512 crore package for farmers

The state assembly has been witnessing a debate on the drought situation and distress in the farmer community for the last three days and the chief minister in his 72-minute address answered almost all the queries. BJP as well as Shiv Sena congratulated the chief minister for providing relief to cotton farmers and for funds for farm ponds.

Pic for representative purpose only

Announcing a package of Rs 10,512 crore for the distressed farmers in the state, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Wednesday said that his government would create decentralised water sources instead of loan waiver and make farmers capable of combating the situation for ever.After chief minister’s 72-minute effective speech, leader of opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil said that chief minister has dismayed the farmers since suicides have increased after last year’s package. The entire Opposition staged a walkout after Vikhe-Patil criticised the chief minister for not announcing complete loan waiver.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The state assembly has been witnessing a debate on the drought situation and distress in the farmer community for the last three days and the chief minister in his 72-minute address answered almost all the queries. BJP as well as Shiv Sena congratulated the chief minister for providing relief to cotton farmers and for funds for farm ponds. The CM announced more than Rs 1,000 crore for cotton and soybean farmers, Rs 2,500 crore for farm ponds and Rs 1,000 crore for Jalyukta Shivar Abhiyan works to provide relief to farmers. Fadnavis said that his government would provide Rs 750 crore for 33 thousand wells in the state. He disclosed that after his government assumed charge, work on 49,000 wells was completed. He said the government has set a target of building 53,000 new wells.Fadnavis announced that his government would provide Rs 1,000 crore for power connections for the wells. He informed that his government has provided 52,000 power connections to farmers from 14 districts in Vidarbha and Marathwada which are facing the worst situation due to drought.Cateorically stating that he was not against loan waiver, the chief minister said that the complete loan waiver announced by the previous government did not result in preventing suicides. Pointing out that the Rs 7,000 crore package by previous government resulted in bringing out cooperative banks from the crisis instead of helping farmers, the CM said that it was observed in Andhra Pradesh that complete loan waiver had resulted in increasing the number of suicides and even more than 100 suicides were reported in a single day. Fadnavis said that the entire package of Rs 10,512 crore would reach farmers directly and assured that the state government would stand behind the farmers in their hour of crisis.Mahabharata referencePointing out that Jalyukta Shivar Abhiyan was neither started by his government nor by the previous government but was first started by the late Vasantrao Naik when he was chief minister, Fadnavis informed the House that he had recently come across a reference from Mahabharat in this regard. He said that Devarshi Naarad tells Dharmaraj Yudhisthir (who was eldest of the Pandava brothers) that a king should create decentralised water sources in the form of lakes so that farmers are not dependent on rain God.

Yogendra Yadav claims AAP MLA from Hari Nagar threatened to beat him up

He said that he told his Ravinder, his associate that would come to Yogendra Yadav’s home and slap him.

Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav has claimed that AAP MLA from Hari Nagar Jagdeep Singh threatened him by telling his associate that he would beat him up. He said that he told his Ravinder, his associate that would come to Yogendra Yadav’s home and slap him.He said that the MLA was most welcome to his house, but not to take his title ‘Chief Whip of AAP’ seriously.

‘Occupy UGC’: Yogendra Yadav to spend night at protest venue

As the ‘Occupy UGC’ movement entered 15th day on Tuesday, Yadav along with Swaraj Abhiyan leaders marched from Constitution Club to the UGC office near ITO where students have been camping

Yogendra Yadav

Swaraj Abhiyan leader and former UGC member Yogendra Yadav on Tuesday decided to spend a night with the students protesting outside the Commission’s against scrapping of non-NET fellowships.As the ‘Occupy UGC’ movement entered 15th day on Tuesday, Yadav along with Swaraj Abhiyan leaders marched from Constitution Club to the UGC office near ITO where students have been camping. Earlier in the day, a resolution was passed in the Swaraj Abhiyan Youth Summit, rejecting UGC’s decision to scrap the fellowship as “non-acceptable”. “We welcomed this protest on the very first day. I know what happens inside the commission, I have earlier also said that this committee was constituted to expand the scope of the fellowship and not to discontinue them. Today, I will sit the entire night with the protesters,” Yadav said while addressing the protesting students.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The protesters burnt effigy of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee alleging that their fellows who conducted a similar protest in Kolkata yesterday were lathicharged by police. Students from Allahabad University also joined the “Occupy UGC” protesters on Tuesday. Besides Yogendra Yadav, former AAP leaders Anand Kumar, Prashant Bhusan and Dharamveer Gandhi also came to the protest venue to express solidarity with the students.”The government is anti-people. The only thing that they do is issue diktats what to wear, what to eat, whom to marry.They are cutting funds in education we will fight them inside Parliament and outside too,” Gandhi said. UGC had resolved to discontinue the scheme of non-National Eligibility Test (NET) fellowship, which is provided to those undertaking research in central universities across India, in a meeting held on October 7, citing shortage of resources. Amidst protests by the students against the scrapping of the non-NET fellowship, the government had last week appointed a five-member panel to review the research grants offered by UGC, which, meanwhile, has been asked to continue all existing grants.The students, however, have been continuing their protests as they rejected the government’s statement as an “eyewash” and are demanding that the review criterion be changed and the fellowship amount increased. “The committee is non-committal about extending the fellowship to all state universities or increasing the amount… The Review Committee constituted by MHRD (Ministry of Human Resource Development) has members with questionable credentials,” Sucheta De, one of the protesters, said.On Monday, the ‘Occupy UGC’ movement had spread to other parts of the country with students holding similar agitations in Kolkata, Pune, Allahabad and Varanasi. Today, students from Madurai Kamaraj University, Tamil Nadu also held an agitation outside the regional UGC office.

Prashant Bhushan slams AAP government for ‘senselessly chopping off’ syllabus

Without naming any state government, Bhushan also slammed the BJP-led dispensations for allegedly including material written by right-wing ideologue Dinanath Batra, and accused them of “spreading superstition” through text books.

Prashant Bhushan

Attacking the AAP government for “senselessly chopping off” school syllabus, Swaraj Abhiyan leader Prashant Bhushan on Tuesday claimed the move was hurting the education standards in Delhi schools and said it should hand over the task to them if it was unable to improve the quality.Without naming any state government, Bhushan also slammed the BJP-led dispensations for allegedly including material written by right-wing ideologue Dinanath Batra, and accused them of “spreading superstition” through text books. Training his guns on his former colleague, Bhushan, who was sacked from AAP in April this year, said, “Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia’s decision to chop off the school syllabus in senseless ways has led to reducing the quality of education further for children of poor and deprived classes.” Bhushan was speaking at ‘Swaraj Abhiyan Youth Summit, a day-long conference organised to discuss problems plauging the education system.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”If Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is unable to improve the standard of education in Delhi’s schools, he should hand the task over to Swaraj Abhiyan who will do a better job,” Bhushan said. In September, Sisodia had announced that students upto class eight studying in Delhi government schools will get a relief from carrying heavy bags to schools as the government has decided to reduce the syllabus by 25 per cent.The Swaraj Abhiyan Youth Summit also passed a resolution on different issues hurting the educational system. The resolution urged government to ensure equal and quality education to the entire student community irrespective of their social and economical status.After the summit, Swaraj Abhiyan activists also marched towards UGC office in solidarity with the protesting students against the UGC decision to scrap non-Net scholarships. Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav, who was leading the march, said he will hold protest outside the UGC for a minimum 24 hours.

Kejriwal takes aim at PM Modi, says talk less and work more on Swacch Bharat

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday said that one should ‘work more’ and ‘talk less’ when it comes to realising the objectives of the Swachh Bharat mission.

Arvind Kejriwal

dna Research & Archives
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday said that one should ‘work more’ and ‘talk less’ when it comes to realising the objectives of the Swachh Bharat mission. “Since one year I havent seen any action, leaving along the advertisements. I want to say that we all should work on this. Let us all talk less and work more,” Kejriwal said “We have made toilet blocks in Majnu Ka Tila. The Delhi Government has also taken a pledge that by March 31, toilets of all slums will be cleaned and water supply will be provided,” he added.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> The Swachh Bharat Abhiyan was launched by Prime Minster Modi on the 145th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. The campaign, which was launched nationwide on October 2, focuses on sanitation, hygiene and waste management. The Swachh Bharat Abhiyan aims at making India a clean country by 2019, the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.

AAP demands ‘sacking’ of culture minister Mahesh Sharma over Dadri remarks

AAP on Thursday demanded the sacking of Union Minister Mahesh Sharma over his remarks that the Dadri lynching should be seen as an “accident” and alleged that the incident was part of BJP’s “communal plot” akin to the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots.

Ashutosh

AAP on Thursday demanded the sacking of Union Minister Mahesh Sharma over his remarks that the Dadri lynching should be seen as an “accident” and alleged that the incident was part of BJP’s “communal plot” akin to the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots.AAP leader Ashutosh termed as “sinister” the chain of events leading to the killing of 50-year-old Iqlakh over alleged consumption of beef, and described it as a “conspiracy” by BJP to “break the country”.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Mahesh Sharma should be sacked,” he said while condemning the Union minister for terming the incident an “outcome of a misunderstanding”. Claiming that the incident was part of a ploy to polarise society, he further charged that “the run up to the killing clearly shows a design similar to that of the Muzaffarnagar riots (of 2013)”.”Now, BJP is giving it a political colour while the local BJP MLA is justifying it and calling for a panchayat,” he claimed while alleging that “BJP and Samajwadi Party play the game together in Uttar Pradesh”.He said that while Prime Minister Narendra Modi projects a certain image of the country in Silicon Valley in the USA, such “heinous crimes” were taking place a few kilometres away from the national capital.The AAP spokesman alleged that BJP leaders were putting pressure on the investigators to let the criminals go scot- free. “It’s unfortunate that we now have politics over what one eats,” he said.Iqlakh was beaten to death and his 22-year-old son Danish critically injured by a 200-strong mob which barged into their house on Monday night following rumours that the family had consumed beef. Cow slaughter is banned in UP.Meanwhile, the Yogendra Yadav-led Swaraj Abhiyan, too, alleged that the incident was part of a conspiracy by BJP and its allied organisations to achieve “communal polarisation” ahead of UP Panchayat polls. “Swaraj Abhiyan requests Prime Minister Narendra Modi — who generally speaks a lot — to open his mouth about the incident and help restore some faith in the government,” a statement issued by the group said.

Yogendra Yadav to undertake ‘Samvedna Yatra’ through ‘drought affected’ regions

At its end on October 15, Swaraj Abhiyan will hold a public hearing involving “leading voices” of the country from various walks of life.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav–accompanied by former West Bengal Governor Gopal Krishna Gandhi and social activist Harsh Mander among others– will undertake a ‘Samvedna Yatra’ through “drought affected” regions of seven states from October 2.The two-week long yatra, that begins from North Karnataka, will make its way though 25 districts of Telangana, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Haryana. It seeks to understand and highlight the alternative models of dealing with the drought, the group said describing the yatra as an attempt to draw public attention towards a looming “national disaster”. It will be comprised of a team of 10-15 activists, writers, artists, journalists and noted photographers such as Raghu Rai and Dayanita Singh.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We are staring at a national disaster that is not yet acknowledged by the government nor adequately recognised by the media…monsoon this year is down by 14 per cent. As many as 295 districts covering 39 per cent land area of the country have experienced severe or drastic shortfall in rains,” a statement said.At its end on October 15, SA will hold a public hearing involving “leading voices” of the country from various walks of life. “For this, we first need the country to know about the extent and dimension of this crisis. The conscience of the country needs to be touched, awakened,” it said.

Dissident AAP MLA Pankaj Pushkar to launch agitation against Delhi govt

Pushkar, who is the Timarpur MLA, said through the ‘Satyagraha’, starting tomorrow at Sangam Vihar, he wants to remind the ruling party of its promises in this regard.
File Photo
PTI photo
Two days after the party expelled two of its Punjab MPs over “anti-party activities”, dissident AAP MLA Pankaj Pushkar on Monday announced his decision to launch an agitation against the Delhi government over lack of facilities in unauthorised colonies. Pushkar, who is the Timarpur MLA, said through the ‘Satyagraha’, starting tomorrow at Sangam Vihar, he wants to remind the ruling party of its promises in this regard. He had earlier written letters to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his Deputy Manish Sisodia on the “neglect and substandard treatment” to Sangam Vihar Wazirabad unauthorised colony.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Apart from the letter, he raised this question twice in Delhi assembly and thrice in the district development committee but to no avail,” a statement said.Interestingly it was issued by Swaraj Abhiyan, a group floated by expelled AAP leaders Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan. Pushkar had openly sided with the rebels and has been an active member of the outfit since its inception.”After doing everything in his capacity as an MLA, Pankaj Pushkar will be reminding the Kejriwal government of its promises made to the public regarding basic amenities and regularisation of unauthorised colonies. The public at Sangam Vihar Wazirabad are agitated at the neglect and insensitivity towards them,” it said.On August 29, AAP suspended its Punjab MPs — Dharamvira Gandhi and Harinder Singh Khalsa — for anti-party activities and alleged that they had joined hands with ruling BJP-SAD combine in the state. Gandhi, who had also supported Yadav and Bhushan, has been partaking in almost every movement of Swaraj Abhiyan.

Yogendra Yadav slams AAP Chief Kejriwal for backing Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad

The Swaraj Abhiyan leader also criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government, terming it a “corporate government”.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav on Monday slammed Delhi Chief Minister and former AAP colleague Arvind Kejriwal for joining hands with JD-U’s Nitish Kumar and RJD chief Lalu Prasad in Bihar, saying the move amounted to “selling out the soul of the anti-corruption movement”.Targeting the Aam Aadmi Party chief for choosing to back Bihar Chief Minister Nitish and Lalu for the upcoming Assembly elections in the state, Yadav told PTI, “It is like selling out the soul of the anti- corruption movement. A person who was a hero of the anti-corruption movement will now be spotted with Nitish on one side and Lalu on the other. The day is not far when he will be flanked by Sharad Pawar too,” Yadav said after his arrival here for taking part in the Bhoomi, Aawas and Aajivika Sammelan organised by Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) leader Medha Patkar in support of those affected by the Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP).<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Meanwhile, referring to the Vyapam scam, Yadav demanded the resignation of Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on moral grounds. Yadav charged that it was impossible that those in power did not have any knowledge of the scam and, therefore, they must quit on moral grounds.The Swaraj Abhiyan leader also criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government, terming it a “corporate government”. He also alleged that the Modi government had ignored the interests of the people hit by the Sardar Sarovar project.

MP govt lauds eunuchs for discouraging open defecation

About 300-odd eunuchs blow whistles in these districts whenever they see anyone defecating in open.

Swachh Bharat (Representational image)

Nearly 300 eunuch have been carrying out a campaign against open defecation under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in Madhya Pradesh, with a state minister today saying that his government’s idea to rope-in eunuchs to discourage the unhealthy practice in three districts has paid off.”The state government’s idea to rope-in eunuchs, about two years back, has brought in encouraging results. The cases of open defecation have come down in Sehore, Sagar and Vidisha districts,” state Cooperative, Social Justice, Panchayat and Rural Development Minister Gopal Bhargava told PTI.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The efforts of eunuchs in checking the menace of open defecation in villages of these districts have paid off, he said.About 300-odd eunuchs blow whistles in these districts whenever they see anyone defecating in open. They politely tell them not to engage in such unhealthy practice, the minister said.Bhargava said the eunuchs are being paid an honorarium for the job. “We are going to rope-in some more eunuchs as their involvement has been fantastic,” he said.The government is working hard to end open defecation in two years, the minister said, adding that the state’s efforts under Swachh Bharat Abhiyan had even been lauded by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his ‘Mann Ki Baat’ radio programme.

Expelled AAP leaders Prashant Bhushan, Yogendra Yadav slam party over students carrying Delhi CM’s placards

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in April expelled rebel leaders Prashant Bhusan, Yogendra Yadav and two others for anti-party activities, gross indiscipline and violation of code of conduct of the party.

Former AAP leaders Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav today lashed out at Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal over students holding placards with his name at an Independence Day function here, calling it a “shameful megalomania.” Kejriwal’s name was a part of several such designs, including the tricolour and ‘thank you’, which was created by students using multi-coloured cloth pieces at the stands of the Chhatrasal Stadium, the venue of the Independence Day celebrations.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The AAP government today said that it was part of a “tradition” being followed over the years. Swaraj Abhiyan leader, Bhushan tweeted:Attacking the party further on the issue, another senior Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav questioned whether the Delhi unit of AAP was trying to emulate the Congress government model. Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in April expelled rebel leaders Prashant Bhusan, Yogendra Yadav and two others for anti-party activities, gross indiscipline and violation of code of conduct of the party.The rebels had expressed disappointment that AAP was no longer adhering to the principles on which it was formed, and also expressed concern about the ‘personality cult’ which could damage the organisation and the leader himself. He had recently attacked the Delhi government over using public money for self-promotion in form of advertisements.Bhushan and Yadav later formed Swaraj Abhiyan.”Kejriwal is surrounded by sycophants. So he thinks he is God,” Bhushan added.Yogendra Yadav tweeted: “The explanation that Sheila Dixit as did it worse than the original sin. Has the AAP Delhi accepted Congress government as its model?” Yadav said in another tweet.

Congress slams PM Modi for not mentioning foreign policy in Independence Day address

Prime Minister Modi touched upon various subjects during his Independence Day address from the ramparts of the historic Red Fort.

PM Modi delivering Independence Day speech

PTI
The Congress Party on Saturday criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi?s Independence Day address, saying the latter had not spoken a single word on country’s foreign policy. “I have been going to the Red Fort for 35 years, this is the first time that a Prime Minister has not said a word on foreign policy,”Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad told ANI. Congress leader Anand Sharma said, “All his talks are hollow…last one year has been very disappointing for the nation. His 90 minute speech today did not give any assurance to nation that they (NDA Government) would fulfill their promises. They had sold dreams to the nation, and they are never going to fulfill it,” he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Prime Minister Modi touched upon various subjects during his Independence Day address from the ramparts of the historic Red Fort. He vowed to relentlessly work towards eliminating corruption from the nation and added that his government has taken several steps to address the issue of black money. He also said that ‘Swacch Bharat Abhiyan’ has touched every person in the country and thanked the children of the nation for enthusiastically participating in the cleanliness campaign. Prime Minister Modi also assured the ex-servicemen that a decision on the OROP Scheme would be taken soon.

Haryana: Either let us protest peacefully or send us to Pakistan, says dalits

Two of the demonstrators received serious head injuries but are said to be out of danger.

Dalits from Haryana, who had converted to Islam, were allegedly attacked on Sunday, with two of them receiving serious head injuries
Manit
dna
Dalits from Haryana’s Bhagana village, who are currently camping here at Jantar Mantar, were allegedly assaulted by some miscreants late on Sunday night, a day after they converted to Islam during a demonstration against alleged persecution by upper caste Jat community.Two of the demonstrators received serious head injuries but are said to be out of danger. According to officials, six others also received minor injuries and were immediately taken to a local hospital. A couple of volunteers belonging to AAP’s rebel faction Swaraj Abhiyan also got injured in the midnight drama after they protested against the alleged attack.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The volunteers, who setting up a stage for a farmer’s rally on Monday morning, called Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav, to the spot at around 11.30am. Yadav said the police instead of protecting the demonstrators, resorted to violence against Swaraj Abhiyan workers.”I do not wish to make an issue between police and our workers. But the fact is our workers were setting up the stage when they saw some men armed with lathis intimidating demonstrators from Bhagana. Naturally they told them to stop but instead of that, the attackers chased us and brutally beat the demonstrators. All this happened in front of the police,” Yadav said adding that the workers had recorded the incident on their mobile phones.Demonstrators told dna that 10-15 people in plain clothes, carrying batons arrived at the protest site at around 11 pm on Sunday. Satish Kalja was among the demonstrators who was by then had slept in the makeshift tent which established. Kalja converted to Islam on Saturday along with other members of his community.”They told us that they were cops and ordered us to leave the area immediately. I told them that either let us protest peacefully or send us to Pakistan,” said 34-year-old Kajla who now prefers to be called Abdul Kalam.According to other demonstrators, it was at this moment when one of the attackers used his baton to hit Kajla. Jagdish, who is now Omar Abdullah, said, “They didn’t leave the women. Abhiyan people came to rescue but they were also hit. Police did intervene after some time but only to hit us.”A senior police officer posted in the New Delhi district rubbished the allegations. “Our officers were on duty all night and when they heard the commotion they quickly took action. The miscreants ran away using the cover of the night. We are looking into the matter,” said the officer. The officer said so far no FIR had been registered into the case. Poor treatmentThe demonstrators have been camping at Jantar Mantar after the brutal gang rape of four Dalit girls in Bhagana village in 2014. At the heart of the conflict lies the struggle over the land and it’s use and ownership by the poor Dalits which has been grabbed by the dominant castes. In 2012, Dalit families were forced to leave their village and move to Hisar district of Haryana after an alleged attack by upper caste groups.

BJP misleading on Swachh Bharat Abhiyan: Sachin Pilot

The NDA government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi had changed all schemes initiated by previous UPA government and all of them proved to be a drama, failed and misled people, he said.

Sachin Pilot

File Photo
Raking up a reported survey which ranked Jaipur at 370th position in terms of cleanliness, Congress leader Sachin Pilot on accused the BJP governments at the Centre and state of misleading people with Swachh Bharat Abhiyan as it has proved to be a failed attempt. By changing the name of ‘Nirmal Bharat Yojna’ brought by previous UPA government, BJP did not achieve or add any thing to Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and has only spent lots of money on it, Pilot said.The NDA government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi had changed all schemes initiated by previous UPA government and all of them proved to be a drama, failed and misled people, he said. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>On Jaipur’s 370th position as per survey among clean cities brought out yesterday, Pilot said even Raje government could not cut ice on it, and many BJP leaders were engaged in putting pictures taken in the background of Swachh Bharat on social media sites. “What has Rajasthan gained out of this fake drive of cleanliness at government expense,” he asked and said “just propaganda”.The state government has to be serious on this issue and take stern action to ensure cleanliness in all cities including Jaipur so that Rajasthan’s glory in the country shines, he said.

IIT Delhi’s decision to invite Baba Ramdev for an event creates controversy

Ramdev and members of RSS’ Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram had attended the meeting on implementation of Unnat Bharat Abhiyan in January this year along with other stakeholders and professors associated with the programme including chairman of IIT Delhi Board of Governors, Vijay Bhatkar.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Amid a raging controversy over saffronisation of education, IIT Delhi’s decision to invite yoga guru Ramdev and an RSS affiliate for deliberations on a programme to leverage the technical strength of the IITs for development of rural areas has raised eyebrows.Ramdev and members of RSS’ Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram had attended the meeting on implementation of Unnat Bharat Abhiyan in January this year along with other stakeholders and professors associated with the programme including chairman of IIT Delhi Board of Governors, Vijay Bhatkar.The meeting, during which involvement of cows to address rural issues were discussed, came at a time when the then IIT Delhi Director R Shivgaonkar had stepped down from his post amid allegations of interference of the HRD ministry. His resignation was accepted in June this year.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>While Union HRD minister Smriti Irani had consistently denied saffronisation of education, on Saturday she held deliberations with RSS affiliated bodies on the new education policy during which they are understood to have also discussed the appointments of possible candidates in various institutes and varsities in the country. However, IIT Delhi sought to downplay the presence of Ramdev saying he was invited as he wanted to collaborate with the rural development initiatives.Meanwhile, officials in the HRD ministry said they were not aware of Ramdev’s presence in that meeting.”He wanted to collaborate with rural development activities and we had invited him since he was in Delhi during that period. He also wanted to explore technologies which we wanted to establish in his clusters,” said Professor Virender Kumar Vijay of the Centre for Rural Development and Technology at IIT Delhi, which is considered as one of the brainchild behind the programme.Professor Vijay also sought to play down reports that they have collaborated with some spiritual gurus in taking ahead the programme.”We have in fact collaborated with about 100 agencies in our mission which also comprised other spiritual gurus. They are having their people connect and if they are connected with the people and want to do something for rural technologies then only we will be considering,” he said.Unnat Bharat Abhiyan, a HRD Ministry scheme anchored by IIT Delhi, seeks to leverage the technical strength of the IITs to help develop rural India through technological intervention.

Amit Shah inaugurates ‘Maha Sampark Abhiyan’ meet for 5 states

The BJP chief is expected to meet MPs, MLAs of states including Maharashtra, Gujarat and Goa, and office bearers.

BJP president Amit Shah on Thursday inaugurated the party’s ‘Maha Sampark Abhiyan’ review meet for five states, including Maharashtra.Shah is expected to address the party workers at the meeting, being held at Rangsharda auditorium in suburban Bandra, on various current political issues, party sources said. He is expected to take stock of the political situation in the state as well as assess the progress of party’s ‘Maha Sampark Abhiyan’.The BJP chief is expected to meet MPs, MLAs of states including Maharashtra, Gujarat and Goa, and office bearers. The meeting comes after a recent meet of BJP workers and office-bearers during the Maha Sampark Abhiyan of eastern zone states. At Thursday’s meet, Shah is expected to speak on boosting party membership, tackling alleged scams and equations with allies. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

Modi government keeping a close watch on media coverage of major events like Yoga Day

The Ministry has compiled a 80-page ‘compliance report’ which included headlines and content of newspaper articles about Yoga Day. It said that the event got a very positive response from people especially on social media blogs.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi

AFP
The one year of the Narendra Modi government saw many important events like International Yoga Day, Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, Digital India etc take place. The government now has began tracking the effectiveness of its communication strategy for events of such nature. According to media reports, the government is keeping a close watch on the kind of coverage television channels, print and social media give to the major events.This is the first time that the Information and Broadcasting (I&B) Ministry is keeping track and filing documents on how media reported International Yoga Day, according to media reports. The Ministry has reported that every third comment in social media about the event was positive and that it held a ‘neutral view’.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Furthermore, the ministry has compiled a 300-page document when it came to TV and termed channels which did not cover the event as ‘defaulters’. Sun Tv and Public TV were among the defaulters, noted media reports.According to media reports, the documents prepared by the I&B Ministry noted activities undertaken by media units before the event took place. The Ministry studied how it was received by the audience both nationally and internationally. An Information Ministry official said that the documents are being sent to ministers after being approved by the Prime Minister’s office. On the account of completion of a year of Modi government, the ministry had compiled a report of 900 news clippings on what Indian and International news channels had to say about the government, media reported.Media reports say that a ‘compliance report’ was also prepared on International Yoga Day. The report mentioned that more than 130 TV channels were monitored for five days until the event took place on June 21. The defaulters list comprised of four channels which did not have any shows on Yoga Day. Apart from the defaulters list there was another list made which had 14 channels under its ambit that carried ‘less number of spots than spots allocated them for airing’.Northeast channels and Urdu channels were in 100% compliance, reported media.The report said, “Most of the monitored channels gave wide coverage to the event with most of them showing more promotional spots than promised.”The Ministry compiled a 80-page compliance report which included headlines and content of newspaper articles about Yoga Day. It said that the event got a very positive response from people especially on social media blogs but it didn’t get as much response as it had got for the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.The I&B Ministry also listed ‘top influencers’ who advertised Yoga Day mostly through tweets and influenced users on the event, say media reports.The Minstry said that 33% people ‘appreciated Modi for taking Yoga to the world and creating a world record’ while 60% posts were neutral. 5% posts were negative where people criticised the event and said that it is a mere publicity gesture, calling upon the government should focus on governance.As reported by media, a senior official said, “When the social media analytics was done on Yoga rehearsal day, 23% posts were encouraging while some said government was trying to steal limelight from important issues.” “But slowly the momentum picked up and we had over 2 lakh posts on Yoga Day alone and sentiment was largely positive or neutral”, he added.International media coverage on the event was also looked upon by a special section where reports say that Al Jazeera and Wall Street Journal complimented Narendra Modi for his efforts to globalise on Indian tradition.The idea to do this came from Information and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, said media reports.”This government takes its communiation seriously”, a senior official said to media. “There has been a proper revamp of every media unit in the I&B Ministry under the new government and this kind of an exercise only sets more accountability and cahllenge in reaching out to as many people as we can,” he added.

Yogendra Yadav fears personality cult projection in approaching Anna Hazare

“We have also not gone to ask him to lead us…Personality cult is no good.. We are meeting ordinary people who are struggling for India. That is far more important than the personality cult,” he said.

Yogendra Yadav

Newly-formed outfit Swaraj Abhiyan on Saturday said they might not ask anti-graft crusader Anna Hazare to get associated with them at this juncture fearing the personality cult projection, but might approach the veteran activist in future. “In future, if we might have a desire to have him (Anna Hazare)…we will request him to be with us and guide us. But right now we have not approached him,” Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav told PTI here in Goa, where he is on a private visit and will also meet local leaders.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>If we do so, Swaraj Abhiyan, a group formed by ousted AAP leaders Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan, would be accused of harbouring personality cult like any other party including AAP, he said. “He (Hazare) has not refused. We have also not gone to ask him to lead us…Personality cult is no good.. We are meeting ordinary people who are struggling for India. That is far more important than the personality cult,” he said.Responding to a question, Yadav refused to judge the performance of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on the scale of one to ten. “Every CM should get a longer time to be judged..It’s unfair to judge him now,” the leader said.”As a matter of fact we have made it a policy of Swaraj Abhiyan not to comment on everyday affairs of AAP.. Media loves it but we won’t comment,” he said.”We commented on the issue of Tomar (Delhi Law minister), we commented on the issue of public advertisement issued by Delhi government. We commented up on the LG because they were policy issues,” he added.Yadav said the demand for full statehood for Delhi is justified. “Every elected government should have the right to transfer its officials. I felt that this politics of confrontation of order is an immature way of trying to achieve statehood. It is immature of chief minister who might make people pay. It is very immature way of dealing with a very justified demand.. Because of this immaturity instead of gaining something it may be counter productive,” he opined.Replying to another query, Yadav claimed AAP leaders have compromised but that does not mean the volunteers have.

Yogendra Yadav attacks AAP forTV advertisement, brands it ‘political corruption’

Yogendra Yadav said the government was using public money in glorifying one person despite the restrictions by the Supreme court against such ads. “This is a form of political corruption as it is using the public money for the advertisments.

In an offensive against the Delhi government over its recent advertisement, Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav on Monday accused the AAP government of indulging in “political corruption” by resorting to such means.Yadav said the government was using public money in glorifying one person despite the restrictions by the Supreme court against such ads. “This is a form of political corruption as it is using the public money for the advertisements.”The AAP had come to power by promising new type of politics. But by coming up with such advertisement, it is getting into the league of Mayawati and Jayalalitha,” the former AAP leader, who was expelled from the party after he upped ante against Kejriwal, told reporters here. Last week, another Swaraj Abhiyaan leader and activists lawyer Prashant Bhushan in a series of tweets said the ad amounted to a “crass” projection of Kejriwal apart from being “crude abuse” of funds, which was “against” a Supreme Court order.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

CM Arvind Kejriwal has lost moral right to govern, should quit: AAP splinter group Swaraj Abhiyan

“In view of the unsavoury development involving Tomar, Kejriwal has lost moral right to govern the state as chief minister and should resign forthwith,” Bhapkar said.

Arvind Kejriwal

File Photo
As AAP grapples with controversy over allegations against its MLAs, its splinter group Swaraj Abhiyan has called for the resignation of party chief and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, saying he has lost the “moral right” to govern. Maruti Bhapkar, a founder member of the Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan-led Swaraj Abhiyan in Maharashtra, charged that the controversies involving AAP MLAs and former Delhi Law Ministers Jitender Singh Tomar and Somnath Bharti have shown the “moral bankruptcy of the Kejriwal-led AAP”.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”In view of the unsavoury development involving Tomar, Kejriwal has lost moral right to govern the state as chief minister and should resign forthwith,” Bhapkar said.”The Tomar episode as well as the complaint against former law minister Bharti made by his wife show the moral bankruptcy of the Kejriwal-led AAP,” he added. He further alleged that the AAP leadership had chosen to ignore the objections cited by the Yadav and Bhushan — the duo who have since been ousted from the party — at their first National Council meeting held after the Delhi Assembly elections.Tomar, an MLA from Delhi’s Trinagar constituency, was arrested by Delhi Police on Tuesday and remanded in four-day police custody following allegations that he not only submitted fake science graduation degree and law mark sheets to register with the Bar Council of Delhi, but also forged a migration certificate.Bharti’s wife has complained to the Delhi Women’s Commission against her husband, charging him with unleashing dogs on her when she was pregnant and subjecting her to severe mental and physical torture. The AAP MLA has termed the allegations “baseless”.

‘Clean My Coach’ app will help you get your train coach cleaned in 15 mins

Travelling through Indian railways is about to get much more hygienic.

Representational image. AFPRepresentational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

The Railway ministry, in an attempt to keep up with Prime Minister’s ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ are launching a mobile application ‘Clean My Coach’, which will allow the passengers to message the cleaning staff to clean a particular coach while travelling, reports the Times of India.

According to the Business Insider, the service which will be rolled out for long distance trains will allow the passengers to lodge complains via a mobile phone or online and it will be attended within fifteen minutes.

According to the official website, a passenger will able to file a complain by entering his/her PNR number. One can also send a request by a SMS. The message will be forwarded to the cleaner present in the particular train directly. The Railway Administration will also simultaneously receive an intimation of such requests for follow up.

So far the cleaning services are available for a few selected trains only.

Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal to begin cleanliness drive in national capital

In October 2014, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, AAP Chief Kejriwal started his separate cleanlines drive the same day.
File Photo
PTI
According to reports, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will begin cleanliness drive in the national capital.Even last year in October, the day Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, AAP Chief Kejriwal started his separate cleanlines drive.News Agency ANI tweeted the update on Wednesday morning:In October 2014, Kejriwal was started cleaning the streets near Prime Minister’s residence at Race Course Road. He then approached BR camp where he joined the safai karamcharis in their cleanliness drive.Meanwhile, Delhi government is also preparing for the budget by holding budget consultations with industrial bodies at Delhi Secretariat.The consultation meetings were attended by Kejriwal, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, the Secretary of Finance and other senior officials of Delhi Government.The Confederation of Indian Industry (CCI) was the first group to make a presentation on budget recommendations for Delhi. The industry body made presentations on Delhi as a ‘Centre of Excellence’ on knowledge economy, education, skill development, sanitation, industrial development, ease of doing business, MSME, environment (solar energy, pollution, solid waste management, water conservation, dust pollution, urban forestry), taxation, VAT, e-commerce, incubation centres, tourism, health care and retail.

Bhushan-Yadav Swaraj Abhiyan to launch farmers movement from June 13

Swaraj Abhiyan, a group formed by ousted AAP leaders Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav, will start a farmers movement to address the agrarian crisis in the country.

Swaraj Abhiyan, a group formed by ousted AAP leaders Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav, will start a farmers movement to address the agrarian crisis in the country.Commencing from June 13, Abhiyan volunteers will fan across the country and will launch a mass-contact programme, Jai Kisan Movement, in about 1 lakh villages. It will kick start from some of the significant and historic sites of peasant locations.”It will cover states like Punjab, Haryana, Western Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan,” Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The campaign demands include withdrawal of the Land Acquisitions Ordinance and a legislation to guarantee minimum income of farmers and assured and adequate compensation against natural calamity.”As part of the Jai Kisan movement, farmers from across the country will march towards the parliament of India, during the monsoon session in August to present the pots filled with earth from the villages,” Yadav added.”The National Working Committee decided to set up Swaraj Kendras, Aman Committees and anti-corruption forum,” said a statement from the group.Yadav said that a decision has also been taken to appoint Anand Kumar, who was also ousted from AAP along with Ajit Jha, as the national convener of the organisation.

Maharashtra government to launch ‘Swachhata Saptapadi’ scheme in Mumbai

Actor Aamir Khan will attend the inauguration ceremony as a guest along with Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, amd Minister of State for Urban Development Dr Ranjit Patil.
File Photo

On the lines of Centre government’s ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’, the Maharashtra Government will launch ‘Swachhata Saptapadi’ scheme in Mumbai on Friday, a senior Urban Development official said.The grants received by the municipal councils and corporations from the 14th Finance Commission will be linked with the successful implementation of the scheme, Secretary to Urban Development department, Manisha Mhaiskar said.Actor Aamir Khan will attend the inauguration ceremony as a guest along with Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, amd Minister of State for UD Dr Ranjit Patil.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”There are about eight lakh homes in urban areas of the state that do not have toilets. Though dwellers do not necessarily defecate in open, they either use community or common toilets,” she said.”The state government wants to stop this. Thus, we will first have to provide them proper facilities to defecate.This is the first mission of ‘Swachhata Saptapadi’,” Mhaiskar told PTI.The officer said while implementing the Sant Gadgababa Swachata Abhiyan, the government has managed to considerably clean up urban areas, but the problem of debris and waste remained unanswered.”It didn’t occur to us that the solution of disposing off waste would lie in its processing. Thus, we see a mountain of waste gathered at most dumping grounds,” she said.Mhaisakar said under the new scheme, debris or waste will not be allowed to dump at dumping grounds and processing of waste will be made mandatory.”We are expecting the Centre to guide us on the uniform processing of waste throughout the state,” she said.Mhaiskar said municipal corporations and municipal councils have to adopt new technology for disposal of waste and the grants received from the Centre will be linked to the implementation of the scheme.”If the councils and corporations fail to implement Swachata Saptapadi, they will loose a part of the grant,” she said. Local self-government bodies likes gram Panchayats, Zilla Parishads, municipal councils and corporations receive grant from the 14th Finance Commission.On June 1, the Union government will hold a meeting of all Urban Development secretaries to discuss on how to link grants to the scheme while the guidelines are expected to be finalised in the meeting.

Yogendra Yadav faces protest by AAP volunteers in Haryana

Yadav, who under his ‘Jai Kisan Abhiyan’ is protesting against the amendments made in the Land Acquisition Act, is giving salt to Lok Sabha MPs of Haryana, saying it is a reminder to them that they eat food produced by the farmers and so have to stand up against the new amendments made in the Act by the NDA government.

Beleaguered AAP leader Yogendra Yadav was on Saturday handed salt packets in Haryana in a gesture of protest by some volunteers of the party, which has been shaken by internal strife involving its top leadership.The volunteers — many of them loyal to Kejriwal — were said by AAP sources to have handed over the the salt packets to Yadav at a meeting in Bahadurgarh with their message being that it was the party which had made him.Yadav, who under his ‘Jai Kisan Abhiyan’ is protesting against the amendments made in the Land Acquisition Act, is giving salt to Lok Sabha MPs of Haryana, saying it is a reminder to them that they eat food produced by the farmers and so have to stand up against the new amendments made in the Act by the NDA government.
AAP is facing a crisis within as a section loyal to party chief Arvind Kejriwal has accused Yadav of trying to remove him from the post of its National Convener. Along with another senior leader, Prashant Bhushan, Yadav was ousted from the Political Affairs Committee of the party earlier this month over these issues.Meanwhile, a source close to Yadav said that alhough the meeting today suffered a disruption, no salt packets were given to Yadav.”We were holding a meeting at a dharamshala in Bahadurgarh. Some 10-15 people came and disrupted the meeting. The people managing the dharamshala asked them to leave the premises. However, they did not give Yogen ji (Yogendra Yadav) any salt packets,” the source said.

Congress high command to decide if Rahul should be made party President

Congress leader and former Union Minister Rajeev Shukla today said that it is for the party high command to decide whether Rahul Gandhi should be made President of the party.”Party leaders have been demanding to make Rahul Gandhi the President of the Congress party since long. But I think this decision should rest with the party high command. The decision on who should take what position in the party should rest with Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi,” he said.Speaking on the expulsion of senior party leader and former union minister Ramlal Rahi for allegedly supporting Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Swachch Bharat Abhiyan’, Shukla said Rahi might have been expelled for other reasons.”Several Congress leaders participated in Modi’s ‘Clean India campaign’ but they have not been expelled. So if Rahi has been expelled from the party, it might have been for other reasons,” Shukla said.

Stand-up comedian Raju Shrivastava cleans temple premises for ‘Swachh Bharat’

Stand-up comedian Raju Shrivastava wielded the broom and cleaned the premises of Banke Bihari temple here, voicing support for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’.Raju, who was nominated for the campaign by Modi, cleaned the premises of the temple on Saturday.”When the Prime Minister has undertaken this task, then we must support it,” he told reporters.”Now on, wherever I go for shows, I will first raise awareness about cleanliness among people. It is our responsibility to keep the country clean,” he said adding that the campaign must not be specific to a political party and be devoid of politics.

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