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Ganga cleaning: Trials in 10 cities to begin next month, says Uma Bharti

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Ganga river

The surface cleaning of Ganga, including removal of solid waste such as clothes and parts of dead bodies, will commence in 10 cities from next month, according to a report in an English news daily.Water resources minister Uma Bharti said the surface cleaning exercise would start in Haridwar, Garhmukteshwar, Kanpur, Allahabad, Varanasi, Patna, Sahibganj, Kolkata, Nabadwip and Gangasagar under the ‘Namami Gange’ programme.Trails for surface cleaning have already started in Varanasi, said the minister. The work has been assigned to Tata Projects. ONGC and NTPC are also interested, she said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The minister informed the daily that 29 projects have been completed at a cost of Rs 463.58 crore with the treatment capacity of 123 million litres per day (MLD) and sewer network of 666.69 km.A total of 93 projects have been sanctioned at the cost of Rs 1,502.66 crore. This will result in the creation of treatment capacity of 858 MLD and sewer network of 3,623.10 km.Development of 4 out of 20 ghats was completed last month. Work at Chandighat (Haridwar), Chhath Ghat (Delhi) and Sahibganj will begin in January, she said.

Bihar CM Nitish Kumar holds marathon meeting on law and order

Kumar talked to IGs, DIGs, SPs and DMs via video conferencing and directed them to maintain rule of law, saying there should be “no compromise in that regard”.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar taking salute during a guard of honour at the Secretariat in Patna on Saturday.

PTI
A day after taking the oath of office, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Saturday held a marathon meeting on the law and order situation and stressed to senior civil and police officials that “there shall be no compromise on the rule of law”. Kumar talked to IGs, DIGs, SPs and DMs via video conferencing and directed them to maintain rule of law, saying there should be “no compromise in that regard”.The Bihar chief minister told reporters after the three- hour meeting that he has given clear instructions to officials that “crime has to be curbed in all circumstances”.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Whoever is breaking the law is a criminal and should be dealt with according to the law irrespective of his standing and position,” said Kumar, who has kept the home portfolio with himself.It is significant that Kumar’s first official engagement after his swearing-in on Friday was a meeting on the law and order situation in the state given that he had faced rival parties’ barbs of a “return of jungle raj” over JD(U)’s poll tie-up with RJD, whose 15-year rule drew claims that the law and order situation had worsened in Bihar.Deputy Chief Minister Tejaswi Yadav was not present at the meeting, which was attended by Chief Secretary Anjani Kumar Singh and state police chief PK Thakur. The chief minister stressed on the need for a scientific approach for faster investigation of crimes. He also emphasised the continuation of the practice of the holding of camp by Circle Officers and Station House Officers every week to solve land dispute cases.Kumar told officials that the DM and SP would be held responsible for any communal incidents and warned that the response should be quick for quelling communal tension. He also stressed on expeditious trial and conviction, saying that it had yielded good results in the past.Meanwhile, on the day when Kumar held a state-level review of the crime situation, Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan and senior Bihar BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi paid a visit to Lalganj in Vaishali district where an SHO was killed earlier this week by a mob following the death of two persons in a road accident. One person was also allegedly killed in police firing on protesters.Paswan later talked to reporters in Patna and demanded a judicial probe into the alleged communal clash in Lalganj. The LJP chief alleged that the district administration was acting “under political pressure in the wake of the incident and booking party supporters at the behest of a JD(U) leader who lost the poll”.

Stage set for oath ceremony of Nitish Kumar, top politicians to attend

All arrangements have been made for the function at the Gandhi Maidan at 2 PM, Patna Divisional Commissioner Anand Kishore, who is supervising the arrangements, said. Kishore said considering arrival of so many VIPs, more than 2,000 security personnel would be deployed at the venue.

Nitish Kumar

The stage is set for the oath taking ceremony of Chief Minister designate Nitish Kumar in Patna in the presence of important leaders and chief ministers of several states.All arrangements have been made for the function at the Gandhi Maidan at 2 PM, Patna Divisional Commissioner Anand Kishore, who is supervising the arrangements, said. Kishore said considering arrival of so many VIPs, more than 2,000 security personnel would be deployed at the venue. Two canopy shaped dais had been prepared for VVIPs and those under SPG cover. In the main dais, Nitish Kumar, his new sets of ministers and VVIPs would sit.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In the adjacent dais, all newly elected MLAs would be accommodated. There would be a separate gallery for women who would be coming to attend the ceremony, he said. Patna Senior Superintendent of Police Vikash Vaibhav today supervised the security drill to escort VVIPs from Airport to the Gandhi Maidan.Prime Minister Narendra Modi had accepted invitation from Nitish Kumar but would not be able to attend the function due to prior engagements. He has deputed Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu to represent the Union Government at the ceremony. The Chief Minister’s Office has released a list of guests which include Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi, former Prime Minister H D Devegowda, NCP chief Sharad Pawar, his National Conference counterpart Farooq Abdullah and Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge.The official guest list has names of nine chief ministers including West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, her Delhi counterpart Arvind Kejriwal and UP CM Akhilesh Yadav. Six chief ministers of Congress ruled states would also attend. They are Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah, Assam CM Tarun Gogoi, Sikkim CM P K Chamling, Manipur CM O Ibobi Singh and Arunachal Pradesh CM Nabam Tuki. Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad, CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, D Raja of CPI and T M K Stalin of the DMK have also confirmed their participation. BJP ally Shiv Sena has accepted invitation and decided to send two Maharashtra Ministers Ram Das Kadam and Subhash Desai to the function.The event would also be graced by former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah besides Sheila Dixit, Bhupendra Singh Hooda, Ajit Jogi, Babu Lal Marandi, Hemant Soren of the JMM and Shankar Singh Baghela. President of National Lok Dal Ajit Singh and former Union Minister and NCP leader Praful Patel would also be present on the occasion.Abhya Chautala of the INLD, BBM leader Prakash Ambedkar, eminent lawyer Ram Jethmalani, Raj Babbar and H K Dua are among the confirmed guests in the list. Along with these guests from across the country, RJD chief Lalu Prasad and his JD(U) counterpart Sharad Yadav would also be present at the ceremony.The Chief Minister’s Office said that high tea would be held for VVIPs at the official residence of the chief minister after the oath function. Nitish Kumar, who is looking after arrangements for tomorrow’s function himself, supervised preparation for the tea party at his residence today, CMO officials said.JD(U) General Secretary K C Tyagi said there was no need to see politics in the oath ceremony. Inviting guests at a function was part of healthy political etiquette. State JD(U) President Basistha Narayan Singh and party spokesman Ajay Alok echoed similar views.

Bihar elections: If voicing truth is an act of revolt, then I am guilty of being a rebel, says Shatrughan Sinha

“If voicing truth is an act of revolt then yes I am guilty of being a rebel. I have always spoken in the interest of the party and the nation. If some people misconstrued for rebellion then I am a rebel,” Sinha said at a function here.

BJP MP Shatrughan Sinha, who has openly criticised the party’s Bihar poll strategy and its stand to not fix responsibility post the debacle, on Sunday said he has only spoken the “truth” even as he took a swipe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the number of seats the party has won under his watch.”If voicing truth is an act of revolt then yes I am guilty of being a rebel. I have always spoken in the interest of the party and the nation. If some people misconstrued for rebellion then I am a rebel,” Sinha said at a function in Nagpur.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He had on Saturday night said the “credit” for the seats won by the party in the state goes to Modi and claimed that his attack on RJD chief Lalu Prasad backfired.Sinha had also said Bihar voters had understood that the announcement of economic package by Modi was a “poll gimmick”.”All the credit goes to Modiji for the number of seats won by BJP in Bihar and there should not be any doubt about it,” he had said while taking a jibe at the PM.The Patna Sahib MP, who has of late turned into a vocal critic of top leadership, reiterated that he was “firm” on seeking action against those responsible for the Bihar rout where BJP’s tally depleted to 53 seats against 178 seats won by the JD (U)-led grand-alliance of the RJD and Congress.”…What wrong have I have committed? All I have done is pointed out the flaws (during poll campaigning). For instance, I have said that the first priority of the government should be to check prices of dal (pulses) and essential commodities since common man is reeling under price rise.”Then I sought an end to ‘Bihari Vs Bahari’ debate that raged during recent Bihar campaign since I believed that no countryman could be termed as outsider in that state,” Sinha said at the function to felicitate veteran Hindi journalist and editor S N Vinod on his 75th birthday.Seeking to put to rest speculations that he was on his way out from the BJP, the Patna Sahib MP said the BJP is the first and perhaps the last political party for him.”I had joined the BJP when it was a two-MP party and stayed along to see it grow and gain full majority at the Centre. No one can doubt my loyalty, sincerity and contribution to the BJP,” the veteran actor said.He said nobody in the party was held responsible even though “it lost elections in Karnataka, Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.”How can they take action against me when I have committed no wrong and always guarded party’s interest,” the former Union minister said.Though today’s event was apolitical, no BJP functionary attended it. Congress’ Rajya Sabha MP Vijay Darda, chairman of Lokmat Media Group, was the chief guest on the occasion.

Bihar elections: Shatrughan Sinha slams PM Modi, says voters knew package was a poll gimmick

“There was no anti-incumbency factor against Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and the day the ‘grand alliance’ of Nitish Kumar-Lalu Prasad Yadav-Congress was formed, they won half the election,” said Sinha.

Shatrughan Sinha

Firing a fresh salvo at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over Bihar poll debacle, disgruntled BJP MP Shatrughan Sinha has said the “credit” for the seats won by the party in the state goes to Modi and claimed that his attack on Lalu Prasad backfired.Sinha also said that Bihar voters had understood that the announcement of economic package by Modi was a “poll gimmick”. “All the credit goes to Modiji for the number seats won by BJP in Bihar and there should not be any doubt about it,” Sinha said while taking a jibe at the PM.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The actor-turned-politician, who had been sulking after he was left out of the electioneering, said it was because of the “aggressive campaigning” by Modi that BJP fetched 53 seats. “Probably Modi was kept in dark about ground realities in Bihar by the party leadership. Outsiders were at the helm of affairs for electioneering, whereas ‘Bihari Babu’ (referring to himself), whom people of Patna sent to Parliament by a margin of lakhs, was deliberately kept out of the campaign, which also people (voters) took seriously and defeated BJP,” Sinha told a select group of mediapersons here last night.The MP from Patna Sahib said the anti-incumbency factor did not work against Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.”There was no anti-incumbency factor against Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and the day the ‘grand alliance’ of Nitish Kumar-Lalu Prasad Yadav-Congress was formed, they won half the election,” said Sinha, who is here for a function. The targeting of Lalu Yadav and the ‘jungle raj’ remarks didn’t go well with the people of Bihar, he claimed “This particular comment (‘jungle raj’) hurt the sentiments of the anti-BJP people of Bihar,” he said, while pointing out that Lalu staged a comeback with flying colours, with “80 per cent success rate (winning 80 seats out of the 100 contested)”.In the recently held elections to the 243-seat Bihar Assembly, the grand alliance won 178 seats, including RJD-80, JD(U) 71 and Congress 27.

Nitish Kumar’s oath-taking ceremony: Sonia, Rahul Gandhi to attend

Patna: A number of leaders, including Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamta Banerjee, will attend Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s oath-taking ceremony in what is being described as “a new beginning of opposition unity in the country”.

Besides Sonia Gandhi, Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi too be present at the oath taking ceremony on 20 November.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav will be there along with Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and his Assam counterpart Tarun Gagoi.

Former Prime Minister Deve Gowda as well as former Jharkhand chief ministers Babulal Marandi and Hemant Soren and Indian National Lok Dal leader Abhay Chauthala have been invited to attend the oath-taking ceremony.

File photo. Image courtesy: PTIFile photo. Image courtesy: PTI

File photo. Image courtesy: PTI

“We have decided to invite all leaders opposed to BJP to attend the oath-taking ceremony of Nitish Kumar,” JD-U spokesperson Ajay Alok said in Patna on Thursday.

RJD chief Lalu Prasad and JD-U president Sharad Yadav will be the main guests at the function.

JD-U general secretary KC Tyagi said that all the big leaders opposed to the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) brand of politics will come together to express their show of unity during the oath-taking ceremony.

“It will be a new beginning of opposition unity in the country,” he said.

Nitish Kumar on Wednesday said he will recommend dissolution of the state legislative assembly on 14 November after holding the last meeting of his cabinet. He will stake claim to form his new government after a joint meeting of the grand alliance on the same day.

According to JD-U leaders in Patna, Nitish Kumar will again take oath as chief minister along with a 36-member council of ministers after the Chhath festival to be celebrated in the third week of November.

The Grand Alliance routed the BJP in Assembly elections, the results of which were announced on Sunday. The RJD emerged as the single largest party with 80 Assembly seats, followed by the JD-U with 71 and the Congress with 27 seats.

There will be 16 ministers from Lalu Prasad’s RJD, 15 from the JD-U and five from the Congress.

IANS

Bihar shocker: Dalit minor raped woman constable molested in Patna

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) though lost the polls, it had led a vigorous campaign against the grand alliance led by Nitish Kumar of the Janata Dal United (JDU) and Lalu Prasad Yadav’s Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) saying a ‘Jungle Raj’ would return.

A day after the JDU-RJD alliance was voted to power, a 12 year-old Dalit girl was raped in the vicinity of the District Magistrate’s office in Patna, reports a leading English daily. A woman constable was molested near Alamganj court in Patna city on Monday night.The incidents come after an intense battle of words preluding the Bihar assembly elections. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) though lost the polls, it had led a vigorous campaign against the grand alliance led by Nitish Kumar of the Janata Dal United (JDU) and Lalu Prasad Yadav’s Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) saying a ‘Jungle Raj’ would return.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The sexual harassment issues could be a point that the NDA may use to hit out the grand alliance.According to the rape survivor’s brother the minor had gone to buy milk from Bakaranj around 8.00 pm on Monday. Three youths who live close to the rape survivor’s house chased er on foot and took her to the ADM office. One guy identified as Sonu raped her. “She narrated her ordeal to family members on returning home,” the brother said.Patna SSP said the police has lodged an FIR under various sections of IPC and SC/ST.In another case of sexual assault, a Bihar military police (BMP) constable was molested by two men when she was coming back to her base camp at the Government Girls’ School in Alamganj locality. The woman resisted but the miscreants hit her with pistol butt.

After thumping victory in Bihar polls, Nitish-led government to take oath on 20 Nov

After a landmark victory in the recently-concluded Bihar elections, the Nitish Kumar-led government is likely to take oath on 20 November, NDTV has reported.

File photo. Image courtesy: AFPFile photo. Image courtesy: AFP

File photo. Image courtesy: AFP

The oath-taking ceremony is slated to take place at the iconic Gandhi Maidan in Patna, according to a report by India Today.

Nitish Kumar will take oath as the Bihar chief minister along with a 35-member council of ministers after the Chhath festival, which will be celebrated in the third week of November, a JD(U) leader has said.

According to leaders of the Grand Alliance, there will be 16 ministers from Lalu Prasad’s Rashtriya Janata Dal, 15 from the JD(U) and five from the Congress.

The RJD emerged as the single largest party with 80 assembly seats, followed by the JD(U) with 71 and the Congress with 27.

With inputs from IANS

The Bihar rub-off: Mulayam faces isolation as new secular axis emerges

Lucknow: The ruling Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh, already grappling with anti-incumbency sentiment among the people, has received another jolt with the election result in neighbouring Bihar. The party’s alliance not only failed miserably in the battle for Patna, its leader Mulayam Singh Yadav now faces isolation for having quit the Janata Dal(U)-Rashtriya Janata Dal alliance shortly before the elections.

Leaders of the JD(U) and the RJD are not even invoking his name to credit him with the initiative to bring estranged leaders Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad Yadav together in the first place. “Mulayam cannot hope to head a national anti-Bharatiya Janata Party alliance now, since the lead has already been taken by Lalu and he announced it in Patna in so many words,” said a Congress leader in Lucknow. Mulayam had broken away from the alliance in September apparently to show his dislike for the inclusion of the Congress in it, and to show his displeasure at the party being given more seats than the SP for the Bihar election.

Mulayam Singh Yadav. PTI

Mulayam Singh Yadav. PTI

“If Mulayam had remained in the Bihar grand alliance, today he would have been sitting in Patna and making the announcement of government-formation in Bihar, but the error of judgment has isolated him among non-BJP parties,” said a UP Congress leader.

While Mulayam’s move has had its impact on the equations he enjoyed in the past with Nitish and Lalu, the SP is set to rethink its strategy for the 2017 Assembly election in Uttar Pradesh. According to sources, the party might soon announce some populist measures as well as schemes for minorities’ welfare. Already, the induction of former Akali Dal leader Balwant Ramuwalia and a few Muslim politicians into the Akhilesh Yadav ministry has set the trend.

At the same time, the SP’s bitter rival Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has acquired the significance as a strong would-be challenger to the SP in the 2017 Assembly election in UP as the rout of the BJP in Bihar has a rub-off in UP. “The people now perceive the SP to be indirectly helping the BJP, and when they want to choose an alternative to the SP government, the BSP is the only option,” reasoned Raj Kumar Singh, a political commentator in Lucknow.

In fact, with the electoral success of the once-bitter rivals, the JD(U) and RJD combine tasting success in Bihar has led to the exciting but near-impossible speculation about whether the SP and BSP could also come together to stop the BJP in the 2017 election.

In August last year, when Mulayam’s efforts to bring together the constituents of the erstwhile Janata ‘parivar’ had been at their peak, he had responded positively to a suggestion by Lalu that the SP and Bahujan Samaj Party should join hands to strengthen non-BJP forces. Mulayam had also said that Lalu could explore means to do so.

However, the BSP was quick to put an end to any such discussion by saying that the SP was a “covert partner” of the BJP and the party would fight the 2017 UP Assembly elections alone. SP and BSP had jointly contested the 1993 Assembly election and had formed a government as well, but the alliance did not last, with the SP chief later calling it a political mistake.

The SP and the BSP represent two different and rival castes, and the two have traditionally been at loggerheads. While Mulayam has the backing of other backward castes and his party is dominated by the Yadavs, Mayawati represents Dalits and of late has attracted the attention of other MBCs and Muslims, as has been evident in the recent Panchayat election results. Also, the OBCs are big land owners in rural UP and also control a majority of agro-industries such as dairy and sugarcane farming. As a caste group, they often face allegations of suppressing Dalits.

UPCC president Nirmal Khatri, however, said that the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party had “tried every trick” to ensure the victory of the BJP in Bihar. “The people of Bihar have struck a resounding blow to these tricks and the people of Uttar Pradesh will give a befitting reply to the two parties in the 2017 election,” he added.

“The Bihar result has also shown the faith of the people in good governance measures by the erstwhile Nitish government. In UP, the SP government faces growing anti-incumbency feelings. The Akhilesh government is seen as being lax on crime control and law and order enforcement,” says Athar Husain, a social scientist heading the Centre for Objective Research and Development (CORD). “On the other hand people still remember how the BSP government headed by Mayawati had kept the crime situation under control during her tenure,” he said.

“The BJP in UP suffers from almost the same weaknesses that hurt it in Bihar, and it does not appear to be prepared to strengthen itself in the next few months for the battle of 2017,” said Singh. In that event, the ruling SP has to prepare itself for a bitter political battle with an aggressive BSP in the coming days.

Poll-time rush and egos: Netas give airport officials a harrowing time during Bihar polls

Patna: Who’s going to take off first? The ego tussle and poll-time urgency among netas is giving a harrowing time to people manning Patna’s high security Jai Prakash Narayan International Airport.

With an unprecedented number of choppers and chartered planes being used in the ongoing electoral battle in Bihar, a different kind of war is on at the small airport. Since all politicians want to take off first for their multiple election rallies planned every day, they try to avoid mandatory security checks like frisking and enter the airport through VIP entry point or exit gate instead of the common entry point. As a result, they indulge in arguments and even minor fisticuffs with Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) personnel responsible for the security of the facility.

Recently, Union Minister Ram Kripal Yadav created ruckus at the airport when he was asked to use the normal channel of movement at the airport in accordance with the Election Commission’s guidelines. He allegedly misbehaved with a woman official of the CISF after she prevented him from using the exit door to enter the high-security zone. He had to apologise after his conduct was reported in the media.

Representational image of Jai Prakash Narayan International Airport, Patna. Courtesy: Bihar Prabha

Representational image of Jai Prakash Narayan International Airport, Patna. Courtesy: Bihar Prabha

He is not alone in misbehaving with the security staff deployed at the building terminal. Several politicians cutting across parties and their supporters indulge in such activities despite the fact that even MPs are not exempted from frisking. According to protocol, only chief minister and deputy chief minister can use VIP gate to reach the tarmac.

The airport officials are faced with a three-pronged problem: Ensuring the safety and security of politicians and the airport, finding parking space for high number of choppers hired by parties inside the state hangar and managing regular flights.

“What we have observed in the ongoing political battle is lawmakers themselves break the law. In return for our tireless effort to ensure no unwanted incident occurs and they take off and land safely, what we get is abuse and hidden threats,” an irritated senior CISF official told Firstpost, cursing himself for choosing the job.

At present, around 200 staff of the paramilitary force have been pressed into service and they have been working without leave for the past one month.

Managing parking space for the flying machines is another major challenge for the security officials as their number is even higher than that of last year’s Lok Sabha polls. “At present 28 helicopters are stationed here in addition to two chartered planes. This number is much higher than that during the Lok Sabha elections when 16 copters were parked here. The BJP has hired 17, the RJD, the JD(U), and the Congress have three each. Of the rest two, one belongs to the LJP and the other has been hired by Pappu Yadav, who has floated the Jan Adhikar Party,” he said.

The situation turns worse when Prime Minister Narendra Modi lands here for campaigning. “All regular flights and the movements get affected because the entire area has to be sanitised and no aircraft is allowed to land an hour before his arrival or departure,” the officer added.

The security officials and the airport authority have asked political outfits to arrange parking on their own if they bring more copters. Three-four choppers lined up waiting for the signal of Air Traffic Control and ground handlers to take off is a regular sight these days at the airport. With limited space inside the small terminal, the dozens of helicopters are seen parked close to one another at the state hangar.

“The parking bay inside the airport resembles a bicycle stand with choppers parked close to each other. This is for the first time in the history of the airport so many copters are stationed inside at one go,” said another official.

Given the small landing and parking space, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation has directed all chartered flight operators to fly in and out of Patna in such a way that they do not interfere with regular flights. There are five parking bays meant for aircraft and the choppers are parked at state hangars.

On an average 20 politicians, including Nitish Kumar, Lalu Prasad Yadav, Jitin Ram Manjhi, reach the airport between 8 am and 10 am to take the helicopter to attend rallies and all of them return by 5-6 pm. The choppers are also used by politicians coming from outside the state for electioneering.

Most of the choppers are double-engined ones supplied by private aviation firms based in Delhi and Mumbai. They charge around Rs 2 lakh to Rs 2.25 lakh for two hours. “This amount is in addition to tax and pilot’s cost. Now, you can estimate the cost of flying a helicopter between 10 am to 5 pm,” he said.

Bihar polls: Muzaffarpur residents reject Smart City plan, want basic amenities instead

One of the most important districts in the state after capital of Patna, Muzaffarpur in north Bihar falls in the historic Tirhut region, and has 11 Assembly seats under it.

Representational Image of a Smart City

Getty Images
It has been selected as one of the three smart cities for Bihar, but residents continue to battle with potholes, waterlogging, and overflowing drains, and feel that politicians instead of ‘selling big dreams’ to people should focus on providing basic amenities first.One of the most important districts in the state after capital of Patna, Muzaffarpur in north Bihar falls in the historic Tirhut region, and has 11 Assembly seats under it. 55 constituencies in seven crucial districts including Muzaffarpur will go to polls on Sunday in the fourth phase of the high-stake Bihar elections.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>34-year-old Anupam Singh, whose family recently opened two small biscuit-making units in the now defunct Bela Industrial Area, says, “Muzaffarpur needs basic civic amenities first before we get ambitious.”I mean, just look at the condition of roads here, the garbage dumps and overflowing drains, and of course waterlogging, one of the nagging problems of our city. They should be tackled first on a priority basis,” he said. Muzaffarpur, Bihar Sharif and Bhagalpur have been selected from Bihar for the ambitious Smart City mission of the Modi-led government, but not many people here seem to be enthused about the project.23-year-old Arun Kumar, who works in railways, and lives in a village in the Kurhani Assembly constituency, says, “he doesn’t know what a smart city is, but I know what I want for our village and the city.” “Modiji had come to Muzaffarpur for a big election rally.I listened to his speech…I have not decided whom will I vote for yet, but I want our candidates to talk of building more and better colleges and hospitals, so that we don’t have to go to Patna or Delhi for medical emergencies,” he said.For tertiary care, the city relies on Sri Krishna Memorial College and Hospital (SKMCH) and Sadar Hospital. Bihar prides it as the country s ‘litchi city’, but every year the bane of encephalitis here gives the state sleepless nights.Muzaffarpur city has LS College, founded in 1899, the oldest college in whole of north Bihar, MIT Muzaffarpur, and Government Polytechnic Institute, Zilla School and several private educational institutions.32-year-old Ram Kumar, who dropped out of L S College, says, “It was a prestigious institution in it heydays, when people from different parts of the state and outside came to study there. It has a planetarium of its own, but it is all locked up and lying defunct for decades now.”Rajendra babu, the first President taught there. Gandhiji on his visit to Champaran stayed there. But, the glory is all gone. And, the reason for our region falling backward is that both Centre and state governments have neglected north Bihar,” he said.

Bihar polls: BJP humiliating Shatrughan Sinha, say Lalu Prasad, Nitish Kumar

“There might be a big explosion within BJP after Bihar elections which the NDA is sure to lose,” said JD(U).

Nitish Kumar alleged that state BJP leaders were “conspiring to keep the ‘Bihari Babu’ (Sinha) away from Bihar poll.”

RJD and JD(U) on Thursday sympathised with rival BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha, who has kept himself off from Bihar elections and vented his ire at state party leaders for “conspiring” against him. RJD president Lalu Prasad shared the discomfort of Sinha, popularly known as “Bihari Babu”, and alleged that BJP was humiliating the actor-turned politician. “BJP is humiliating Shatrughan Sinha who has done a lot to bring the party at this position,” Prasad told reporters when asked to react on ire of Sinha against his own party. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>JD(U) General Secretary KC Tyagi said many important BJP leaders like LK Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, Shatrughan Sinha and R K Singh have been sidelined by the current party leadership for questioning the style of functioning of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Amit Shah. “There might be a big explosion within BJP after Bihar elections which the NDA is sure to lose,” he told reporters. Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has on several occasions spoke high about Sinha and targeted BJP for “humiliating” the actor-turned MP who used to be a star campaigner of the party and had pulled crowd when there were not many takers of the saffron party. While, rivals shared agony of Sinha, who is BJP Lok Sabha member from Patna Sahib, his own party leader Uma Bharti had a different take. In reply to a question on Sinha, Union minister Uma Bharti told reporters “Voices made in anger does not bear any meaning.” When asked to comment on issues raised by Sinha, she described Sinha as her “elder brother”. Sinha, who has remained conspicuous by his absence during poll campaigns, had come here yesterday to cast vote. He left Patna hours after exercising franchise without visiting party office or meeting any leader. To questions by reporters, he alleged that state BJP leaders were “conspiring to keep the ‘Bihari Babu’ (Sinha) away from Bihar poll.”

Bihar Polls: Once Modi’s supporters, Shourie, Jethmalani now his strongest critics, says Nitish Kumar

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar on Thursday said that former BJP leader Arun Shourie and senior Supreme Court lawyer Ram Jethmalani, were once a strong supporter of Narendra Modi during last year’s general election campaign, but are now strongest critics of the Prime Minister and his government.

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar on Thursday said that former BJP leader Arun Shourie and senior Supreme Court lawyer Ram Jethmalani, were once a strong supporter of Narendra Modi during last year’s general election campaign, but are now strongest critics of the Prime Minister and his government.”Ram Jethmalani and Arun Shourie were supporters of Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the Lok Sabha election campaign last year. But now, why is it that their feelings have changed? Ram Jethmalani came to Patna and held a press conference. He lent his support to veterans fighting for the OROP (One Rank One Pension) and also raised the issue of reservation and black money,” Kumar said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Now, Arun Shourie has also launched a stinging attack on the Modi government. People like them, who had put all their strengths to develop the personality of Prime Minister Modi, today, they are criticising him and his government,” Kumar added.Former BJP leader Shourie, had recently contended that the Prime Minister believes managing the economy means “managing the headlines”, and said that people have now started recalling the days of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.”Doctor Singh (Manmohan Singh) ko log yaad karne lag gaye hain (People have started recalling the days of Manmohan Singh). The way to characterise the policies of the government is “Congress plus a cow. Policies are the same,” Shourie said at a book launch function earlier this week.Expelled BJP lawmaker Ram Jethmalani was in Patna recently and said the BJP should be defeated in the ongoing Bihar elections, as it had “failed” to keep its promise to bring back the black money stashed illegally abroad for evading taxes.Jethmalani also said he had become a “victim of fraud” by playing into the hands of Narendra Modi and Arun Jaitley.”Today, I have come here (Patna) to do ‘penance’ for what I did by promoting Narendra Modi as the leader of the country (before the Lok Sabha polls). I thought that God has sent him as his ‘Aulia’ (representative) for India’s salvation…How I became the victim of that fraud,” Jethmalani said.

Bihar Elections: Newbie ‘Gareeb Aadmi Party’ makes a debut this year

Styled as ‘Gareeb Aadmi Party (GAP)’ and barely a year-old, the Delhi-based new outfit says that like the ‘Aam Aadmi Party’ it seeks to offer an “alternative politics” and is asking voters to “mind the GAP” between “Modi camp and Nitish-led grand alliance”.
Representational Image
dna Research & Archives
A small political outfit modelled on AAP is making its debut in Bihar elections, while a journalist seeking civic changes in the capital, along with a string of other independent candidates is testing fortunes in the hustings.Styled as ‘Gareeb Aadmi Party (GAP)’ and barely a year-old, the Delhi-based new outfit says that like the ‘Aam Aadmi Party’ it seeks to offer an “alternative politics” and is asking voters to “mind the GAP” between “Modi camp and Nitish-led grand alliance”.”We are fighting this polls with all our might and spirit and have fielded candidates for 19 seats including Digha, Danapur, Bankipur and Kumrahar, Phulwari, Patna Sahib in Patna district. Our candidates are also in the fray in Muzaffarpur, Vaishali, Hajipur as well.Two of our candidates are also competing against Laluji’s two sons in Mahua and Raghopur constituencies,” GAP’s national state president, Shyam Bhartiya told PTI.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The new party was founded in March, towards the fag end of the Lok Sabha polls last year, and it even fought on 11 seats then, albeit unsuccessfully. Bhartiya, who rebelled from the AAP, said, “I still believe in the vision with which AAP was formed, so we chose to name it as GAP.””We fought in UP, Jammu and Kashmir, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, among other places, and though we failed to win any seat, our performance as a debutant was encouraging, and so, we decided to enter Bihar polls representing the common man. And, even if we can win one seat in Bihar, it will be a moral victory for us,” he said.Incidentally, the party’s Bihar president Dilip Kumar Singh, rebelled from RJD to join GAP, and he says the “whistle party symbol” is for “driving the political thieves away”.Patna goes to polls on Wednesday, along with five other districts Bhojpur, Vaishali, Buxar, Nalanda, Saran — in the third phase of the high-octave Bihar elections, which will span 50 crucial constituencies. AAP is not in the fray in the Bihar polls.Dust will settle this evening in the six districts and loudspeakers and megaphones will fall silent, after the high-decibel political campaign ends ahead of the October 28 polls. But, amid political giants like Modi-Shah-led NDA and Nitish Kumar-led “Grand Alliance”, a journalist has decided to enter the battlefield, asking people to “reject political shenanigans” and vote for a pro-development candidate.42-year-old Brajesh Mishra, editor of a small city-based monthly has plunged into the political battle from the crucial Kumrahar seat, which has a maximum number of 34 candidates, among all seats in Patna district.”Our issues are quite simple but these are nagging problem of the area waterlogging due to poor drainage and provision of water And, Mishraji before entering politics has been campaigning for the welfare of people and betterment of civic issues by holding several dharnas,” an official from his office in Ashok Nagar East area said.Mishra held a roadshow on Monday in his constituency before curtains come down on the poll campaigns.In Kumrahar, he faces BJP MLA Arun Kumar Sinha and a Congress candidate in Atiq Haider from the ‘Grand Alliance’, himself a former MLA.Mishra is riding on ‘camera symbol’ and so, chorus of “camera chap zindabad!” rent the air as his small group of supporters hold the roadshow.But, whistles and cameras aren’t the only quirky symbols in use this Bihar polls, as independents and small parties have added flavour and upped the fun quotient with such amusing choices. So, two other independent candidates in Kumrahar are fighting the polls on ‘pen-stand’ and ‘cylinder’ symbols while Garib Janta Dal (Secular) is riding on an ‘auto’.The party’s canvassing done on megaphones-carrying auto-rickshaws look amusing and attract quite a few eyeballs. Then there is ‘Krantikari Vikas Dal’ with a ‘chhari chhap’ or stick symbol, adding further to the amusing list.But, it is not just names and symbols that are lending humour to the high-pitched electoral battle, the campaign songs too are quite a draw. So, while Congress has gone with its pet Jay Ho theme, the Mahagathbandhan has used the Mahabharat serial opening theme lyrics to woo voters.”Congress-JDU-RJD se aage badhe Bihar, jab bane Mahagathbandhan ki sarkar,’ screams a loudspeaker during a canvassing in Kankar Bagh locality of Kumrahar constituency.Adding to the list of oddities are — green chilli, cauliflower, ice cream, shoe, chappals and bucket — some of the election symbols which were allotted to registered, unrecognised political parties contesting the Assembly polls. Some of the other parties in fray, which have interesting names include ‘Aap Aur Ham Party’, National Tiger Party , Saathi Aur Aapka Faisla Party and National Road Map Party of India.Jitan Ram Manjhi’s ‘Hindustani Awaam Morcha (Secular) has been allotted ‘telephone’ as its symbol. His party has been granted the symbol to contest all the 243 seats. ‘Lok Awaj Dal’, another party contesting the polls, has been alloted green chilli as its symbol.It has been alloted symbol for 50 seats. The ‘ice cream’ symbol has been alloted to Aam Janata Party Rashtriya .Bihar Assembly has 243 seats and the Wednesday polls hold key to the fate of six important districts and 50 crucial seats. But, newbies pitted against biggies and independent candidates have certainly brought a different style of humour to the polls, otherwise seen and heard only in election rallies.

Bihar polls: Patna’s marginalised community still awaits basic amenities

Assembly election in Patna is due on Wednesday and campaign has reached a fever pitch, but neither the seasoned voters nor the first-timers from this motley community in Teshlal Verma Nagar are excited about the Bihar polls.

RJD chief Lalu Prasad addressing an election rally in Gopalganj, Bihar on Friday. PTI Photo

PTI
Tucked away in a western corner of Patna is a group of villagers, where residents live precariously right next to the new Pataliputra railway station, but Bihar’s growth trajectory seems to have bypassed them.Displaced and marginalised for over two decades, the community of about 500 Hindu and Muslims families from the underprivileged class have developed contempt for all “vote-seeking” politicians as they struggle everyday with no access to water or sanitation facilities.Assembly election in Patna is due on Wednesday and campaign has reached a fever pitch, but neither the seasoned voters nor the first-timers from this motley community in Teshlal Verma Nagar are excited about the Bihar polls.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Life is hard for these people, especially the women who still have to travel quite a distance, navigating treacherous paths and railway tracks to-and-fro to fetch water for the families.Putuli Devi, a fragile looking woman her early 40s, gets agitated and saddened at the mention of voting.”They (politicians) only use us every election. They beg for our votes and then never show their faces or do anything for us poor. For fetching water, I still have to go on foot to the new housing colonies that have come up on the opposite side of the tracks, but even they are located at distance, and how long can we beg for water from other people,” she rues.Devi, belongs to Dusadh caste, and rest of the families also belong to scheduled or backward castes like Mallah, Beldar, Paswan, Ravidas.Pataliputra Junction, which was inaugurated a few years ago, falls on the new Danapur-Digha-Sonepur rail-cum-road bridge and Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu through a video link from New Delhi had flagged off trial run of an engine on the line.70-year-Mohammed Saleem claims that the villagers settled in the area in the 1990s and once the work on the new station began, their hutments were evicted, following which they filed a petition in a court, and after the station was built, “we shifted right next to it, abutting the canal, over which the new road line is coming from Khagaul.”Most of these houses are built like bunkers, as during storms and high-monsoon rains, the weather gets choppy and blows off the roofs.”During bad weather and storms, we just jump inside and hold on to bamboos or whatever we can hold on to. Sometimes, our thatched roofs get blown away in the wind, but this bunker-like design helps us survive the ravages of weather,” said Nasima Khatoon, another resident.”We want water and sanitation at least, because women and girls have to go out and defecate in the open. Men too have no option, as there are no toilets, not even public conveniences,” she said, adding, “a proper school would be our third property”.The ‘Swachh Bharat’ Abhiyan of the Centre seeks to end open defecation in the country by 2019, by building adequate number of toilets. According to Union Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation’s recent report, states like Bihar, Punjab, Andhra Pradesh have lagged behind in construction of toilets.Asked if they would choose NOTA option to voice their dissatisfaction with the poltical class, the general reply will be “what is that thing, I have never heard of it”. Sakaldip Paswan, 75, who has voted in many Assembly and general elections, including the last Lok Sabha polls, is oblivious of the ‘NOTA option’ available for voters.”NOTA kya hota hai babuji, hum to kabhi nahin sune hayn (what is a NOTA sir, I have never heard of it),” he said.

Bihar polls: EC to review preparations for remaining phases

Chief Election Commissioner Nasim Zaidi and two election commissioners will arrive Patna on Sunday for a two-day visit to the state to review preparations for the remaining phases of Assembly Elections.

Chief Election Commissioner Nasim Zaidi and two election commissioners will arrive Patna on Sunday for a two-day visit to the state to review preparations for the remaining phases of Assembly Elections.They will have discussions with Civil and Police authorities and will also meet representatives of political parties in Patna on Sunday. They will also review the election expenditure management with CEO, Police, Excise and Income Tax officers.The Commissioners will visit Muzaffarpur on Monday and review poll preparedness with DEOs, SSPs, Commissioners, IGs and DIGs.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Commissioners will address a press conference at Muzaffarpur before returning to the national capital.Polling for the first two phases has already been completed. 57 percent voting was recorded in the first phase and 55 percent was recorded in the second phase of the Assembly Elections.While the third phase is scheduled for the 28th of this month, the fourth phase will be held on the November 1. The final phase will take place on the 5th of next month.The counting of votes will be taken up on the November 8.

Bihar polls: Congress President Sonia Gandhi to address two rallies today in Buxar and Manjhi

Sonia Gandhi on Saturday will be addressing two rallies before the third phase of polling here in Bihar.

dna Research & Archives
Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Saturday will be addressing two rallies before the third phase of polling here in Bihar.The Congress President will also address one rally each in Buxar and Manjhi in the afternoon. The polling for the third phase of elections will next take place on October 28. 50 assembly seats will be covered in this phase which includes Saran,Vaishali, Nalanda, Patna, Bhojpur, Buxar.57 percent voting was recorded in the first phase and 55 percent was recorded in the second phase of the Assembly Elections.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

The Bihar voter’s dilemma: A choice between the moral and the electoral

You can see almost all of Bihar on a 100-metre stretch of Beer Chand Patel Road in the heart of Patna. Since it is almost a  microcosm of the state, people on this road could be a fascinating sample for some poll punditry.

Is the BJP winning? Why is Nitish Kumar still popular? Is Lalu Prasad Yadav the demon his opponents call him?

Some of the answers are scattered on this road.

On either side of this road are offices of the major political parties, each just a stone’s throw away from the other. The BJP is sandwiched between the offices of Lalu Yadav and Nitish Kumar’s parties; somewhere on the fringe is the Nationalist Congress Party. Almost a replica of the battle formation.

Narendra Modi and Nitish Kumar. PTI

Narendra Modi and Nitish Kumar. PTI

On the pavements outside the party offices and palatial bungalows of judges of the Patna High Court that dot the Beer Chand Patel Road, dogs, cows, hens, rickshaw-pullers, labourers, tea-sellers — who still use coal-fed choolhas instead of gas or kerosene stoves — compete for what Adolf Hitler one fought with the world: Lebensraum (living space).

Cows graze on the post-monsoon remnants of grass, dogs scavenge for food in the open dustbins and hens run around merrily before laying eggs that are then sold on the pavement shops. Amidst all this frenzy, several men — most of them rickshaw pullers and migrant labour — lie asleep on the sidewalks, clad in tattered vests and gamchhas (towels) that barely conceal their modesty after getting exhausted because of hard labour and the suffocating daytime heat.

You guessed it right: Patna is not Ahmedabad or Chandigarh; it is not even a Jaipur or an Indore. It is still a gloomy reminder of India’s teeming poor, crowded roads, dirty pavements and the fact that many Indians still live like animals and share their living space with them.

It stands to reason then that the people of Bihar would be upset with the state of their own living conditions; they would be eager to get out of this quagmire of poverty and pollution that has pulled them into the same bog as dogs, cows and poultry.

You guessed wrong.

Badlo sarkar, badlo Bihar (change government, change Bihar) is emblazoned on banners outside the BJP office in response to the Grand Alliance’s Bihar mein bahaar ho, Nitish Kumar ho. “The BJP supporters are roaming from colony to colony and village to village to convince people to vote out Nitish Kumar,” says Manish Kumar, a taxi driver waiting for his next passenger near a tea-stall on BCP Road. “But, Nitish is very popular; he is the best chief minister we have had. It would be difficult to vote against him,” he says.

Manish Kumar was born and brought up in Patna. He started out as a rickshaw-puller, graduated to three-wheelers before buying his own Swift Dzire, which he now drives between the airport and city.

The taxi driver’s life could be a metaphor for Patna’s development and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s enduring popularity in Bihar. For the world outside, Bihar may still be languishing at the bottom of many development indices, but for many of its residents, Nitish Kumar has helped bring it out of its dark past and put it on the path on the progress. It is symbolic of Bihar’s progress from rickshaw-pulling to taxi-driving.

Many economic indicators support Manish Kumar’s claim of Nitish Kumar being Sushashan Babu. Under him, Bihar has done consistently well on several indices. According to an Assochem study, at 9.3 percent the compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of Bihar was the highest among Bimaru states between 2004 and 2012 and much higher than the national average. Bihar registered 13.9 percent growth in the industry sector during the past decade, an indication that people feel comfortable investing in Bihar. It consumed more electricity, spent more funds on roads and urban infrastructure. And its crime graph dipped.

Vijay Swaroop, a senior journalist with the Patna edition of Hindustan Times, recalls an interesting conversation with a rickshaw puller to chronicle the change. “A decade ago, goondas would snatch whatever money I had on the roads of Patna. Now I have no such fear,” Swaroop recalls the conversation he had a week ago.

Pre-poll surveys in Bihar have so far contradicted each other, oscillating between victory for the NDA and the Grand Alliance. But, they have been consistent with one finding: Nitish tops popularity charts and people have a lot of respect and love for him. In some polls, he even beats Modi.

Yet, this is not translating into euphoria for him or indicating a clear, decisive victory for the Grand Alliance. Patna is quiet, almost blasé about the election with nobody sure of the outcome.

Lalu Yadav has polarised the Yadavs in favour of the Grand Alliance, a trend Narendra Modi is trying hard to reverse with both with his call to the pride of Yaduvanshis and counter with references to jungle raj. Muslims, Kurmis and a small percentage of Mahadalits are united in their support for Nitish Kumar.

But this MY-plus-Kurmi combination has been neutralised by the upper caste voters, Paswans, Koeris and Mushars who are supporting the BJP.

It is almost like a Mexican standoff, each rivals has its gun pointed at the other’s head. But nobody is confident of pulling the trigger. Only the Extremely Backward Caste voters — considered to be more than 20 percent of the electorate — can break this deadlock. So, both parties are targetting them.

“The EBCs are silent. They have their cards close to their chests,” says Chandan Kumar Yadav, a spokesperson for the Congress. “Pre-poll surveys are contradicting each other because they do not know what the EBCs will do. Since their voting pattern varies from district to district, psephologists are not getting it right,” he says.

Many experts believe the EBCs will vote tactically, depending on who they want defeated in their region. ‘Badka dushman kaun (who is the bigger enemy)? — between Bhumihar and Yadav is the defining question for EBCs as they consider the option of governments that could be dominated by the two caste groups they consider inimical. For many of them, Nitish means Yadav raj and a BJP government implies the hegemony of Bhumihars. For EBCs, it is a classic case of being caught between the devil and the deep sea.

Some hints can be picked up from BCP Road. The rickshaw pullers who are happy that money is no longer snatched from them on the roads of Patna are scared that Lalu raj may return from the backdoor. But they know without Lalu, there can’t be Nitish Kumar this time. As Sanjay Kumar of CSDS says, both would have been reduced to 20 seats each and the BJP would have walked away with 160.

Choices, both electoral and moral, are tearing apart many voters. Welcome to an election that is being fought daily in the minds of many Biharis.

Bihar Polls: Amit Shah hits out at CM Nitish Kumar, calls him ‘arrogant’ and ‘over-ambitious’

Amit Shah was speaking to BJP workers in Patna on Saturday.

BJP President Amit Shah addressing the party workers meeting in Patna on Saturday.

PTI
A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi blasted Bihar CM Nitish Kumar for being “arrogant” enough to reject the special package, BJP President Amit Shah also attacked Kumar on similar line, stating that he had no right to dismiss the package.”Arrogant and over-ambitious Nitish Kumar, who harboured a dream to become PM, does not have any right to reject the special package of Rs 1.25 lakh crore announced for the people of the state,” Shah told a BJP workers Sammelan at Gardanibagh stadium in Patna.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Narendra Modi government has promised to give Rs 1.25 lakh crore special package besides Rs 40,000 crore for existing schemes to change the fortunes of Bihar. The amount together is three times of Bihar’s annual budget of about Rs 50,000 crore. Lalu-Nitish did not even bother to thank, instead Nitish said that Bihar will stand on its own,” he said.”Nitish Kumar does not have any right to deny special package announced for Bihar as it is meant for the welfare of poor, youths, women and farmers,” Shah said while addressing BJP workers of 32 Assembly seats of Patna and neighbouring areas that would go for polls in the third phase on October 28.Shah, who has been camping in Bihar for past three days and moving around the state to galvanise party workers for the crucial Bihar poll, lambasted Kumar’s claim of ushering the state into development in company of RJD and Congress.”With Lalu Prasad symbolising ‘jungle raj’ sitting on one shoulder and Congress symbolising corruption on another, Kumar’s claim of development is nothing but farce,” he said while addressing a workers meeting at Purnea earlier.He said “jungle raj” was prevailing in the state during RJD’s 15-year-rule and a win for Grand Alliance meant return of “jungle raj-2.”Alleging that RJD-Congress rule of past 25 years had made the state most backward, he accused the Bihar Chief Minister of backstabbing the people’s mandate of 2010 by severing ties with the BJP. Seeking to take wind out of AIMIM chief and Hyderabad MP Asauddin Owaisi’s sails on alleged neglect of Muslim-dominated Seemanchal area, the BJP chief said the future NDA government would pay special attention to the area. Shah also highlighted the performance of BJP ruled states of Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Chhattisgarh, stating because of their good showing the party had been winning elections regularly in the states.

Watch: Lalu Prasad Yadav dubsmashing Narendra Modi is the funniest thing on the internet today

RJD’s Lalu Prasad Yadav took to dubsmash to mock the Prime Minister.

While Narendra Modi might have been the first politician to use social media properly, Lalu Prasad Yadav has to be the first one to use dubsmash to mock his rivals. Ahead of the Bihar polls, the politician put up a video on Twitter which showed him dubsmasing some of Narendra Modi’s popular phrases. ​While this isn’t the first time that Narendra Modi has turned up on Dubsmash, it’s certainly the first time that someone used the medium to mock him. This isn’t the first time Lalu mocked Narendra Modi. Earlier, mimicked Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s oratorical skills while giving a speech in Patna. Mimicking Modi’s speech in Patna, the former Bihar Chief Minister mocked Modi’s style of speaking and his last speech in Patna. Lalu Prasad Yadav questioned the way PM Modi announced the Bihar package. (Read: Lalu Prasad mocks Narendra Modi)Earlier, Lalu had said: “Narendra Modi has given a new low to the standards of a prime minister. People are looking at him as a joke now,” Prasad said in a tweet. The Prime Minister should ask his friend Amit Shah what else he has learnt in addition to falsehood, mis-campaign and dividing people from the jail.”

For the mahadalits of central Bihar constituencies, Digital India is not even a pipe dream

The Paswan family members make their ends meet by doing odd jobs
Amita Shah
dna
In this hamlet of thatched huts, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s message of Digital India is far out of range.Under the shade of lemon trees, where Shivraj Paswan and his family are just beginning the day’s chores, life has not changed as governments come and go. Oblivious of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s US tour which had dominated television news space, leave alone his meetings with Apple CEO Tim Cook or Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, they are still waiting for a political messiah who will at least return to them after being elected.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Humra pait bharat naahi, TV kahan se leube (we are not able to fill our stomach, how will we buy a television),” says Paswan’s wife, as she prods her husband to take the goats for grazing so that he gets Rs 100, an amount too big to lose.Less than 50 kms from Patna, the village falls along a well-paved road. “Nitish Kumar has done a lot of good work. But, nothing has changed our lives,” said Paswan pointing to the three generations of his family. He also resents the fact that Nitish Kumar tied up with RJD leader Lalu Prasad Yadav.Just eight days ago they got a notice from the bank asking them to return Rs 15,000 of the loan of Rs 25,000 they had taken 15 years ago. “Lalu Prasad Yadav had promised in 2003 that it would be waived off,” said Paswan.Like most from their community, amidst the cynicism and fading hopes, they have made up their mind to vote for “Modi”, the face of the BJP-led NDA of which Ram Vilas Paswan’s LJP is a constituent. The dalits in Mahua are upset with former chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi, a mahadalit leader. Ironically, they may end up voting for Ravinder Rai, the former JD-U leader and sitting MLA, who is now with Manjhi’s HAM.But, the Yadavs will vote for Tej Pratap, Lalu’s eldest son who is making his debut this election. Mohd Kalam, a local RJD leader, claimed that the party had an edge because of the dominance of Yadavs and “anti-incumbency” against Rai. According to him, of the 2.66 lakh voters, 50,000 are Yadavs, 40,000 Muslims, 15,000 mahadalits and 10,000 Kurmis.In the busy Mahua town, along the dusty broken road, lined with several mobile and service provider shops, it’s a different story. But, here too, the development slogan is lost in the caste cacophony.In another village, Singhana Tara, which also falls in Mahua segment of Vaishali district, Shivji Rai’s story is similar to that of Paswan. Running a tractor, he could not afford to educate his three sons and two daughters. Two of his sons run rickshaws in Patna.Around 45 kms from Mahua, in Alampur village of Sarairanjan assembly segment which falls in Samastipur district, the Musahars, who belong to Manjhi’s community, are fighting for water. Denied water from a government hand pump, they have to go to a nearby school to get water. They are familiar with mobile phones but computers.As the BJP’s candidate, Ranjit Nirguni leaves after talking to them, they say the vote is a right they will exercise for their “saviour” — Manjhi. Aware that Manjhi has joined the NDA, they have decided to vote for BJP. Asked if Manjhi did anything for them when he was chief minister, Ram Pratap Sada said it was because Nitish Kumar denied him a chance.His father sat plucking corn to make sattu, roti or bhanja. He has voted in every election. Ram Pratap said life has changed from begging to doing labour for a paltry sum. Samastipur’s literacy rate is 62.81 per cent, one per cent lower than that of Bihar and around 12 per cent less than India’s, which is 75 per cent.

Dr Subhash Chandra Show: Is MBA just a blind rat race?

Dr. Subhash Chandra (DSC) Show is aired every Saturday at 10 pm on Zee News and 7 pm on Zee Business with a repeat telecast on Sundays at 11 am on Zee News and Zee Business. This show is also aired on other channels of Zee Media.​

This week Dr. Subhash Chandra Show was conducted at Birla Institute of Technology Mesra, Patna in Bihar. The session witnessed participation of 500 students from the campus who discussed if MBA degree is just a rat race or does it have some significant role in the world today with Dr. Subhash Chandra. While sharing his thoughts on the matter Dr. Chandra said that there is no harm in pursuing any degree as long as you seek it from the perspective of adding it to your knowledge bank but pursuing it just for the sake of making good money is exactly the same as entering a rat race.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He also said at the event that if one has to really learn the managerial skills, there are no better examples than housewives who not only have the expertise of managing material and money but also the capability to manage human resources.Watch the episode here:While addressing the students of Bihar, he also expressed his concern over the gender ratio of Bihar i.e. 918 per 1000 male and the migration rate which is 44 lakh per year.He said that the students of Bihar need to focus on entrepreneurship more than just jobs. The session was organised as part of the episodes of the Dr. Subhash Chandra Show. Dr. Subhash Chandra (DSC) Show is aired every Saturday at 10 pm on Zee News and 7 pm on Zee Business with a repeat telecast on Sundays at 11 am on Zee News and Zee Business. This show is also aired on other channels of Zee Media.​

Rahul Gandhi’s plane fails to land in Delhi, diverted to Jaipur

Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi’s chartered plane was diverted to Sanganer airport in Jaipur tonight due to air traffic congestion in New Delhi.

Rahul Gandhi

PTI photo
Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi’s chartered plane was diverted to Sanganer airport in Jaipur tonight due to air traffic congestion in New Delhi.Gandhi was on his way to Delhi from Patna after addressing a party rally when the plane was diverted.”After nearly half-an-hour halt, the plane took off,” Sanganer airport director NK Tailong told PTI. Coincidentally, former chief minister Ashok Gehlot was present at the airport to take a flight to Delhi when he got information about the landing and he received Gandhi there, party sources said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Gehlot also left with Gandhi in the latter’s plane instead of the regular flight, the sources said.

No bar on PM Narendra Modi’s ‘Mann Ki Baat’, says Election Commission

Seeking permission, the ministry of information and broadcasting clarified on September 17 that the subject matter of Mann Ki Baat in no way violates the poll code as it is being addressed by the PM in his official capacity.

In a decision that is bound to receive flak from the opposition parties, the Election Commission has found nothing objectionable in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Mann Ki Baat to be broadcast on September 20.Several parties, including the Congress, the JD(U) and the RJD, had approached the Election Commission on Wednesday seeking suspension of PM’s radio address ‘Mann ki Baat’ until completion of the Bihar elections. In a letter to the poll watchdog, they said that permitting Prime Minister to use the official mass media would give him and the BJP an unfair advantage.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Seeking permission, the ministry of information and broadcasting clarified on September 17 that the subject matter of Mann Ki Baat in no way violates the poll code as it is being addressed by the PM in his official capacity.Responding to the secretary of ministry of I&B, the EC said, “the commission has no objection to the broadcast of the programme Mann Ki Baat over All India radio and Doordarshan subject to the condition that nothing be said therein that may be construed as inducement to voters or as having any impact in election bound state of Bihar where the Model Code of Conduct is in force from September 9 to November 12, 2015.”However, in a related matter the ECI has pulled up the ministry of railways on movement of special trains. Responding to a complaint by several MPs and leaders of opposition parties including K C Tyagi and Pawan Verma of JD (U), KTS Tulsi and Randeep Singh Surjewala of Congress and Manoj Jha of RJD for running special trains between Patna – Mumbai and Patna-Raipur at the behest of RSS functionary Sharad Joshi on 60% concessional fare, the EC has asked the secretary, Railway Board why permission was not taken in this regard even after the enforcement of MCC and ensure that no special concession be allowed in respect of any special train leaving from any station in Bihar or coming to any station in Bihar without prior permission of the EC until November 12, 2015.

BJP’s ’embedded tours’ create scare in JD(U)-RJD camp

The aim is to showcase the development in these states in order to mobilise the visiting villagers who, in turn, will relate these success stories in their hamlets by word of month to shore up NDA’s fortunes.

PTI
As part of its novel poll strategy to combat caste calculations and the grand secular alliance of Janata Dal (United), Rashtriya Janata Dal and Congress in the upcoming Bihar elections, the Bharatiya Janata Party is arranging tours of hordes of villagers, mostly from remote and deprived regions to the BJP-ruled states.The aim is to showcase the development in these states in order to mobilise the visiting villagers who, in turn, will relate these success stories in their hamlets by word of month to shore up NDA’s fortunes.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Around 5,000 of them are currently on excursion to Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra to have a taste of ‘vikas’ (development) in these BJP-ruled states. A group of villages from remote Pali area of Dharbhanga district has just returned from the Shekhawati region of Rajasthan, where they were showcased benefit of organic farming of wheat, fenugreek, chickpeas and isabgol. Laxmi Narayan, sarpanch of Ghanshyampur village, was visibly impressed while narrating farming of olive oil near Jaipur with the help of Israeli technology, a pet project of chief minister Vasundhara Raje. Another group of villagers from Araria district on their way back to Patna via Delhi had visited south Gujarat, where they were told that since Narendra Modi’s takeover as chief minister in 2001, the agriculture growth in the western state, despite scanty water resources, has increased to 11 % against the national growth of mere 2.5%. They were told that with abundant water resources, Bihar can take a lead in agriculture with the help of the Prime Minister, provided his party wins the crucial assembly election. Pomegranate farms in south Gujarat have fascinated Pradip Kumar Yadav, a small-time farmer in Amauna village in Araria district. “With an investment of Rs 70,000 per acre, we were told that farmers are getting at least Rs 2.5 lakh,” he said. This novel mode of campaigning has created panic in the opposition camp. Leaders of the grand secular alliance allege that these poor and mostly illiterate farmers are shown government nurseries, made to walk on garden path like embedded journalists. Congress general secretary C P Joshi, Janata Dal (United) general secretary K C Tyagi and party leader Pavan Varma, RJD’s Manoj Jha and Rajya Sabha MP and advocate KPS Tulsi have submitted a two-page memorandum to the Election Commission, complaining that such tours undertaken at the time of elections are illegal and unethical. They are also livid that Railways has given 60% concession to carry these villagers to these BJP-ruled states.Alleging that many of these trains, except one to Raipur, had left Patna, when the model code of conduct came into force on September 9, the alliance leaders urged the chief election commissioner to take appropriate action, cancel the return journey of these villagers, recovering the concession of 60% given for these special trains and order an inquiry into the whole affair. The last of these trains left Patna for Jaipur on September 13.They asserted that these trains were plying with the financial and administrative support of the Railways in a blatant collusion of the BJP and the Central government while the state governments concerned were allegedly bearing the cost of hotels, food and tour within the respective states under the programme “Chalo vikas dikha ke layein” (let us show them development).Tulsi said this was not only blatant misuse of the government machinery to take the BJP workers on free excursions but also amounted to buying the voters which is a crime under the election laws. He said the application for reservation was signed by a senior functionary of the RSS and the railway concession was extended on the directions of the railway minister.

Ahead of Bihar polls, Manjhi’s son Praveen Kumar detained with cash worth Rs 4.65 lakh

Jehanabad: In a major embarrassment for ex-Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi ahead of Bihar polls, his son Praveen Kumar was on Sunday detained by the police after he was allegedly found carrying Rs 4.65 lakh in cash in a car.

Praveen Manjhi. IBNLive

Praveen Manjhi. IBNLive

During routine checking of vehicles, the police intercepted a car at Gaya-Jehanabad check post near Umta village and seized Rs 4.65 lakh in cash from Manjhi’s son Praveen Kumar who was on his way to Patna from Gaya, Sub-Divisional Police Officer Md. Ashfaq Ansari said.

Kumar was detained and taken to Makdumpur police station for questioning after he failed to give a satisfactory reply about the purpose for carrying the cash, he said.

Senior police and civil officials have gone to Makdumpur police station to question Kumar, Ansari said.

Manjhi, the former chief minister, who is also the President of Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular), is in New Delhi for seat-sharing talks with BJP.

The five-phase Bihar Assembly election will begin from 12 October and counting of votes will take place on 8 November.

Kumar said he was going to Patna from Gaya with Rs 4.65 lakh for construction work being carried out in his house.

“I was going to Patna from Gaya. The amount was Rs 4.65 lakh.

“I was taking this money to build our house. At our house in Hanuman Nagar in Patna, some construction work is going on. I had taken this money from my brothers,” he told reporters.

PTI

EC transfers Bihar Home Secy, 9 district magistrates, 7 police officials ahead of state polls

New Delhi: Ahead of Bihar assembly polls slated next month, the Election Commission on Friday ordered the transfer of state Home Secretary Amir Subhani, nine district magistrates and seven senior police official including SPs and SSPs and said those transferred from districts should not be posted to any election-related post.

Representational image. Agencies

Representational image. Agencies

It asked the state Chief Secretary to send the poll body with a ‘compliance report’ within 24 hours along with copies of transfer orders.

The EC also appointed Sudhir Kumar Rakesh, 1983 bath IAS officer, as the new Home Secretary.

Since Subhani was also Secretary in charge of General Administration Department besides being the Home Secretary, the EC said the state government could post any other secretary-rank officer to the post.

It said Subhani “may be given any other assignment/post by the state government, as deem fit.”

During the Model Code of Conduct, the EC has superintendence over the administrative machinery and is free to transfer officers.

District Magistrate-cum-District Election Officer of Patna Pratima Verma and Patna SSP Vikas Vaibhav are among the senior administrative and police officers transferred by the poll watchdog.

Last month, the Election Commission had ordered transfer of officials connected to the conduct of elections, who are either posted in their home districts or have served in places for long, as part of its procedure to ensure free and fair elections.

In a letter addressed to Chief Secretary and Chief Electoral Officer of Bihar, the poll watchdog, however, had made it clear that the transfer-posting order will not apply to Sector Officers though they are directly involved with the poll process.

“The Commission, in its task of conducting free and fair elections has followed the consistent policy to ensure that officers, who are connected with the conduct of elections in the state, do not serve in their home districts or places where they have served for long,” it had said.

PTI

Bihar Home Secretary, 9 District Magistrates and 7 SPs transferred by Election Commission

Last month, the Election Commission had ordered transfer of officials connected to the conduct of elections, who are either posted in their home districts or have served in places for long, as part of its procedure to ensure free and fair elections.

During the Model Code of Conduct, the Election Commission has superintendence over the administrative machinery and is free to transfer officers.

Ahead of Bihar assembly polls slated next month, the Election Commission on Friday ordered the transfer of state Home Secretary Amir Subhani, nine district magistrates and seven senior police official including SPs and SSPs and said those transferred from districts should not be posted to any election-related post. It asked the state Chief Secretary to send the poll body with a ‘compliance report’ within 24 hours along with copies of transfer orders.The EC also appointed Sudhir Kumar Rakesh, 1983 bath IAS officer, as the new Home Secretary.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Since Subhani was also Secretary in charge of General Administration Department besides being the Home Secretary, the EC said the state government could post any other secretary-rank officer to the post. It said Subhani “may be given any other assignment/post by the state government, as deem fit.”During the Model Code of Conduct, the EC has superintendence over the administrative machinery and is free to transfer officers.District Magistrate-cum-District Election Officer of Patna Pratima Verma and Patna SSP Vikas Vaibhav are among the senior administrative and police officers transferred by the poll watchdog.Last month, the Election Commission had ordered transfer of officials connected to the conduct of elections, who are either posted in their home districts or have served in places for long, as part of its procedure to ensure free and fair elections.In a letter addressed to Chief Secretary and Chief Electoral Officer of Bihar, the poll watchdog, however, had made it clear that the transfer-posting order will not apply to Sector Officers though they are directly involved with the poll process.”The Commission, in its task of conducting free and fair elections has followed the consistent policy to ensure that officers, who are connected with the conduct of elections in the state, do not serve in their home districts or places where they have served for long,” it had said.

Bihar elections 2015- Why didn’t Nitish Kumar utter a word against UPA’s ‘paltry package’: BJP

BJP accused him of doing ‘politics of package’.

If Nitish Kumar has the financial strength to implement schemes worth Rs 2.7 lakh crore, then why was he demanding special package?, asked BJP

BJP on Tuesday hit back at Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar’s criticism of the Prime Minister’s announcement of Rs 1.25 lakh crore package for the poll-bound state and accused him of doing “politics of package” without uttering a word against UPA’s “paltry” package” earlier. “If Nitish Kumar has the financial strength to implement schemes worth Rs 2.7 lakh crore, then why was he demanding special package? Then why is he doing politics of package for the last three years? If you cannot do with the package, then Rs 2.7 lakh crore is merely a attractive slogan,” Union Minister and senior BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Prasad also asked Congress president Sonia Gandhi as to why being the head of a big national party she “climbed down” to addressing the Patna rally before Nitish and Lalu Prasad. “It is clear that Nitish Kumar does not like the Rs 1.25 lakh crore package announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but wondered why he was opposed to it and did not ask for more if there were shortcomings? He is not liking this package. If there was any shortcoming in this package, he could have demanded more. But to criticise the package means unheeding Bihar’s interests.”This package is for the people of Bihar. “Nitish Kumar did not utter a word on the paltry amount of Rs 12,000 crore. He never uttered a word but here on the huge amount of Rs 1.25 lakh crore, he is seeking to criticise it, undo it, belittle it,” he said. The BJP leader said Nitish is luring people in this election with talks of future and is not talking of all that he has done these years when in power.

Smriti Irani to visit IIM Gaya

I am going to Gaya to meet with students of IIM. Some buildings of the central university have been constructed from the point of view of academia and hostel, Irani told media.

Union Human Resource Development Minister Smriti Irani on Monday said she will be going to Gaya to meet with students of the Indian Institute of Management (IIM).I am going to Gaya to meet with students of IIM. Some buildings of the central university have been constructed from the point of view of academia and hostel, Irani told media.I have come to attend the first phase of training of near about 80,000 health workers of Bihar through Patna’s National Open School, she added.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

Congress has been exposed on Land Bill, says Union Minister Nitin Gadkari

Since the ordinance is being allowed to lapse tomorrow, the government has notified rules which will come into effect from today to address this “incomplete work,” Gadkari said.
File Photo
PTI photo
Union Minister for Transport and Shipping Nitin Gadkari said at Nagpur on Sunday that the Congress has been exposed for its “double standard” on the Land Aquisition Bill and for taking an “anti-farmer” stand. On Sunday morning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in his ‘Man ki Baat’ radio speech that the government will not re-promulgate the Ordinance on Land Acquisition, allowing it to expire on Monday. Modi said that the Congress not only opposed the bill, but also showed that it is against farmers’ interests, Gadkari said at a press conference at Nagpur on Sunday evening. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Gadkari, who has advocated the Land Bill during several media interactions across the country, said that the government has declared its readiness to incorporate any suggestion in the bill to benefit farmers. However, since the ordinance is being allowed to lapse tomorrow, the government has notified rules which will come into effect from today to address this “incomplete work,” he said.He said that since it is on the concurrent list, state governments are free to enact the law, adding, that during a NITI Aayog meeting, several chief ministers had agreed but chief ministers of Congress-ruled states had opposed it.Replying to a question, he denied that the BJP-led government is on the backfoot. He also refuted Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s charges made at a rally in Patna that the BJP-led government is on the backfoot due to constant Opposition from the Congress and other like-minded Opposition parties.”The Modi government bowed out on the Land Bill due to people’s pressure against the anti-farmer bill,” Sonia Gandhi had said at a rally in Patna recently.

Bihar Elections 2015: BJP will face a debacle worse than Delhi, warns Lalu Prasad

The RJD supremo said the people of the state would make BJP understand that “they are not buyable” and in an apparent reference to Modi, said any “outsider with blood of a businessman in his veins” would not be allowed to insult them.

Lalu Prasad was addressing the crowd at Swabhiman Rally in Patna.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
On a day top leaders from the grand secular alliance assembled in Patna to address ‘Swabhiman Rally’ to counter the NDA, RJD president Lalu Prasad on Sunday attacked the BJP on social media saying it “will face a debacle worse than Delhi” in the upcoming Bihar Assembly elections.”The public is outraged over non-keeping of promises by the BJP (on) corruption, unemployment and inflation. BJP will face a debacle worse than Delhi. We will break its arrogance to pieces,” Prasad posted on social media platforms. He asserted that the people of Bihar have made up their minds to chase away BJP from the state.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Referring to the crowd of supporters of the ‘grand secular alliance’ who gathered at the Gandhi Maidan, the venue of today’s Swabhiman Rally, Prasad said it was a testimony to the determination of the people of the state.”The BJP has got a heart attack after noticing Gandhi Maidan teeming with people brimming with enthusiasm,” he said.Prasad also hit out at the ‘DNA remark’ by PM Narendra Modi against Kumar during his Muzaffarpur rally last month. The RJD supremo said the people of the state would make BJP understand that “they are not buyable” and in an apparent reference to Modi, said any “outsider with blood of a businessman in his veins” would not be allowed to insult them.”Good ‘sanskara’ (habits) course through our veins. Good ‘sanskaras’ are in our DNA. In our state we call even poor rickshaw-pullers with respect. We will not allow any outsider, who has blood of a businessman in his veins, try to insult us,” Prasad added.

No development, only drama in anti-farmer Modi regime, says Sonia Gandhi

Some people enjoy insulting Bihar, sometime they insult Bihar’s DNA, she said.

Modi govt wants to distribute the land of the farmers among its rich allies

File Photo
Congress president Sonia Gandhi used Sunday’s Swabhimaan Rally at the Gandhi Maidan in Patna to say that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government have done nothing except drama during the first quarter of their tenure. “The Modi Government has completed one fourth of its tenure, but they have done nothing except drama in this period. There has been a huge decrease in development schemes for children and women,” said Sonia at the rally.”The prime minister had promised to give employment to one crore people every year, but nothing was done to fulfill that promise,” she added. “Modi Government is anti-farmer…Some people enjoy insulting Bihar, sometime they insult Bihar’s DNA. It wants to distribute the land of the farmers among its rich allies,? said Sonia. The Congress president also stressed that the grand old party has always respected the people of Bihar and their talent. “It is evident in the history that there is a huge contribution made by the Congress Party in taking Bihar on the course of development.” <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

Bihar elections: SP to participate in rally featuring Sonia Gandhi, Lalu Prasad tomorrow

Ending the suspense, Samajwadi Party (SP) today decided to participate in the rally of grand secular alliance in Patna tomorrow but its chief Mulayam Singh Yadav would not attend it.

Mulayam Singh, Lalu Prasad, Sonia Gandhi and Nitish Kumar

File Photo
Ending the suspense, Samajwadi Party (SP) today decided to participate in the rally of grand secular alliance in Patna tomorrow but its chief Mulayam Singh Yadav would not attend it.After a talk between Mulayam Singh Yadav and RJD chief Lalu Prasad it was decided that Samajwadi Party would attend the rally. Mulayam, however, would not attend and instead would send his brother Shivpal Singh Yadav to the rally, which will be attended by Congress President Sonia Gandhi.”We have received communication that Shivpal Singh Yadav and Kironmoy Nanda would represent SP in tomorrow’s rally,” Bihar SP President Ramchandra Singh Yadav told PTI. He said the decision was taken after a telephonic conversation between SP chief and his RJD counterpart Lalu Prasad.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad will attend the programme being organised for coordination among workers of partner parties in the crucial Bihar elections.With the announcement of participation of Shivpal Singh Yadav, who is minister in Akhilesh Yadav government in Uttar Pradesh, and Nanda, party secretary general, the suspense ended over participation of SP in the rally of ‘grand secular alliance’ at Gandhi maidan in Patna on Sunday.Earlier in the day, Lalu Prasad had announced that SP would contest five seats in the Bihar polls. “We have decided to give three seats earlier allotted to NCP and two from RJD quota to SP in the Bihar elections.”NCP peeved at the offer of only three seats had shut doors on the grand secular alliance in Bihar poll.But allotment of five seats did not charm SP either which maintained the suspense over its participation in the rally throughout the day before announcing its decision late evening. Ramchandra Singh Yadav had led an indefinite dharna after the party was denied any seat in the grand secular alliance on August 12, when it was decided that RJD and JD-U will contest 100 seats each of total 243 Bihar assembly, and Congress 40 seats and three seats were left for NCP.

Bihar Elections 2015: Why is it tough for the BJP to indulge in word-war against Nitish Kumar?

If we try and decode the two major failures Nitish Kumar is accounted for, BJP will have equal or even greater role to play in those failures.

Narendra Modi’s next speech is scheduled at Bhagalpur airport ground on September 1, and we shall have to wait and watch if the BJP comes up with a new game plan for Nitish Kumar.

Despite two massive public gatherings in Saharsa and Muzaffarpur, and several tempting announcements by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, why does Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) seem uncomfortable to take on Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar directly?​ In his speeches, Narendra Modi, unlike his campaigns during Lok Sabha polls, had nothing much to talk about his real rival Nitish Kumar.With his comparatively shorter speeches, all PM Modi focused on was Lalu Prasad Yadav and his ‘tainted’ political career. PM Modi said, “Do you know what the true meaning of RJD? It is ‘Rozana Jungle Raj ka Darr’ (Daily Fear of Jungle Raj).” PM Modi even brought up Fodder scam in his speech. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>While there were direct attacks on Lalu, PM Modi stuck to veiled attacks on CM Nitish Kumar. “Do you want liberation from a ‘goonda raj’?” is all Modi asked. The ReasonAnti-Incumbency is one of the main reasons why BJP was supported not just in LS polls but Haryana and Rajasthan assembly elections too. There is yet no such notion in Bihar for the BJP to be benefited. Nitish Kumar had been on the CM chair for two consecutive terms excluding a short span when Jitan Ram Manjhi was handed over the throne.Nitish Kumar has been ruling Bihar for 10 years now, out of which 7.5 years was shared with the BJP under National Democratic Alliance. Two years are probably a very short period for BJP to come up with something concrete against the current chief minister of Bihar who hardly has a taint on his image.If we try and decode the two major failures Nitish Kumar is accounted for, BJP will have equal or even greater role to play in those failures. Hence, the silence!Non-implementation of Land Reforms CommissionOne of the key promises Nitish Kumar had made after occupying the CM chair was to carry out land reforms. A Land Reforms Commission (LRC) under the chairmanship of Dr. Bandyopadhyay, who is known as the main curator of land reforms in West Bengal, was set up soon after that.The full report of the Commission was submitted in April 2008. JD(U) was not the only one to be blamed for not taking the first step towards the implementation of this Commission. BJP is known for representing the upper caste particularly Bhumihars who own major share when it comes to the land in the state, and it was the fear of losing vote bank that the LRC recommendations weren’t considered.Violence in Patna after Brahmeshwar Mukhiya was murderedThe then Nitish Kumar-led NDA government had seen its second term and the CM earned respect for ensuring law and order. However, on June 1, 2012 after Ranvir Sena chief Brahmeshwar Mukhiya was killed early in the morning, about 30 of his supporters equipped with hockey sticks, bricks, stones, firearms and crude bombs attacked on Bhimrao Ambedkar Welfare Hostel of Patna University. The hostel, where only Dalit students lived, witnessed fierce violence. Three Dalit students were badly injured. And yet the government which was an apt example of social engineering neither stopped it, nor could it make any effort to nab the real rioters. The capital of Bihar hadn’t witnessed such dismay in 7 years since Nitish took the charge in 2005.Brahmeshwar Mukhiya, a Bhumihar himself enjoyed support from the same people who have been votebank for the BJP in Bihar; Rajput, Bhumihar, Lala and Brahmin. The reason why probably JD(U) had to let it go.Other aspectsNitish’s Incorruptible image: There is one thing that BJP cannot argue about and that is the incorruptible image of Nitish Kumar. They may call his rule as ‘goonda raj’, but corruption is something that Nitish Kumar has always kept himself away from. Modi can get away with comments like ‘Maa-bete ki sarakar’, and commenting on Nitish’s ‘DNA of Democracy’ after JD(U)’s alliance with RJD, but can never term him as corrupt. No CM Candidate: The propositions of LS polls are entirely different from that of the assembly elections. BJP faced a similar crisis in Delhi and was compelled to name a CM candidate at the 11th hour, which eventually failed as Kiran Bedi couldn’t even save her own seat. In Bihar too, BJP has no name to offer to the voters despite several suggestions made by BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha and RLSP chief Upendra Kushwaha.On the other hand, Nitish Kumar is a well established leader who is known for bringing Bihar back from ‘Jungal Raj’. He had been an obvious choice of Bihar in the last two elections. It’ll be interesting to see if voters go for certainty or they show their faith in the BJP leadership like they did LS polls. Seat Distribution: While Nitish and Lalu have sorted their differences and have come to terms with equal number of seats, BJP is yet to make a decision on it. Its allies in Bihar – Upendra Kushwaha-led Rashtriya Lok Samta Party, Ram Vilas Paswan-led Lok Janshakti Party, Jitan Ram Manjhi-led Hindustan Awam Morcha and Rajesh Ranjan alias Pappu Yadav-led Jan Adhikar Morcha – are all looking out at respectable number of seats to contest on. Manjhi and Kushwaha both have already expressed that if they don’t get what they demand for, options are open for them.A meeting for the same is to be conducted on August 31st, and it will be an uphill task for the BJP to satisfy the urge of all allies. NDA is legging way behind from the Mahagathbandhan. With only a couple of months in hand, it seems the BJP has a lot of distance to cover. Narendra Modi’s next speech is scheduled at Bhagalpur airport ground on September 1, and we shall have to wait and watch if the BJP comes up with a new game plan.

dna Must Read @ 1 PM : From Sheena Bora murder to Smart Cities

A curated list of five top stories.

Here’s a curated list of five top stories that have happened since the morning. These stories will give you an update on the major developments.1) Sheena Bora murder: Peter Mukherjea’s son Rahul questioned again; motive of murder remains a mysteryMumbai Police on Wednesday questioned Rahul Mukherjea, son of media baron Peter Mukherjea, in connection with the Sheena Bora murder case, the second time he was summoned within a span of a few hours. He was also quizzed late last night by Khar police. According to police officials, Rahul, who is Peter’s son from previous marriage, was again grilled about his ‘relationship’ with Sheena and why he did not pursue a missing complaint about her. Read More<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>2) Want to ensure that no child in India dies due to lack of vaccination: PM Modi at Global Call to Action Summit​Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday inaugurated the ‘Global Call to Action Summit-2015’ in Delhi. At the summit, PM Modi said, “We will ensure every woman and child that can be saved, will be saved.”He also added, “This is a landmark occasion and for the first time this summit is being held outside USA. This summit will provide a highly effective platform to address common challenges that will help us achieve desired goals.” Read more3) Arvind Kejriwal shown black flags at Patna airport by Anna Hazare supportersDelhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was shown black flags by the protestors, who claimed to be the supporters of veteran social activist Anna Hazare, on his arrival at the Patna airport today. The protestor alleged that Kejriwal has betrayed Hazare. Read More4) BJP MPs Adityanath, Sakshi Maharaj raise alarm over Muslim population; demand Uniform Civil CodeA day after Census 2011 data on Population by Religious Communities was released by the Registrar General of India, Bharatiya Janata Party leader and Gorakhpur MP Yogi Adityanath said that the rise in Muslim population in the past decade “is an alarming and dangerous situation for the country,” reports said. Read more5) Centre unveils list of 98 Smart Cities that emerged winners of nationwide competition​Kolkata, Mumbai, Jaipur, Bhubaneswar and Rae Bareli will be developed as Smart Cities as the Urban Development Ministry formally announced the names of cities being selected for the NDA government’s flagship project on Thursday. Read More

Arvind Kejriwal shown black flags at Patna airport by Anna Hazare supporters

The protestor alleged that Kejriwal has betrayed Hazare.

Once united, Arvind Kejriwal and Anna Hazare have seperate ways since Arvind chose the path of politics following the least achievement from Jan Lokpal protest at Jantar Mantar.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was shown black flags by the protestors, who claimed to be the supporters of veteran social activist Anna Hazare, on his arrival at the Patna airport today.The protestor alleged that Kejriwal has betrayed Hazare.Kejriwal will share stage with his Bihar counterpart Nitish Kumar here today and deliver a lecture on ‘Governance’.Last week, Nitish Kumar was in Delhi to attend the ‘Bihar Samman Sammelan’ as chief guest. The event was organized by the AAP Government in an attempt to help Kumar connect with the Delhi-based Bihar voters. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

Kejriwal, Nitish to share stage in Patna today

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will share stage with his Bihar counterpart Nitish Kumar in Patna on Thursday and deliver a lecture on ‘Governance’.

Kejriwal and Nitish

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will share stage with his Bihar counterpart Nitish Kumar in Patna on Thursday and deliver a lecture on ‘Governance’. Last week, Nitish Kumar was in Delhi to attend the ‘Bihar Samman Sammelan’ as chief guest. The event was organised by the AAP Government in an attempt to help Kumar connect with the Delhi-based Bihar voters.Kejriwal and 11 AA leaders with roots in Bihar organised the event to felicitate Nitish and pledge their support to him for the elections. The two leaders will also work out a schedule for holding and addressing joint public meetings. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Asserting that the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is not part of the alliance in Bihar, Congress leader Shakeel Ahmed on Thursday said that one must not give unnecessary importance to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s visit to Patna. “He is not there for the alliance; the first rally of alliance is on 30th. He is a Chief Minister and he might have gone there to attend some government programme for which Bihar Chief Minister might have invited him,” Ahmed told ANI.”Kejriwal ji’s performance in Delhi has been very poor. The people of Delhi are very disappointed,” he added. Kejriwal was shown black flags by the protestors, who claimed to be the supporters of veteran social activist Anna Hazare, on his arrival at the Patna airport on Thursday The protestor alleged that Kejriwal has betrayed Hazare.

Former RJD leader Pappu Yadav gets anticipatory bail

Jan Adhikar Party founder Pappu Yadav was on Monday granted anticipatory bail by a local court in Patna in connection with a case lodged against him for allegedly disrupting public servants from discharging duties during a stir last month.

Pappu Yadav

Jan Adhikar Party founder Pappu Yadav was on Monday granted anticipatory bail by a local court in Patna in connection with a case lodged against him for allegedly disrupting public servants from discharging duties during a stir last month.District judge Virendra Singh granted the anticipatory bail to Yadav, a Lok Sabha MP from Madhepura, after hearing a petition moved by his counsel.Patna police had lodged a case against 1100 people, including Yadav under sections Indian Penal Code (IPC) for disrupting public servants from discharging duties during an agitation by un-aided educational institutions in Bihar on August 3.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In the FIR lodged at Gandhi Maidan police station, the police had alleged that the Madhepura MP was found leading a protest at busy Dak Bunglow round-about on the day and the agitators led by him disrupted road traffic despite being asked by it not to agitate in the restricted area.

Bihar polls: Samajwadi Party set to enter ‘grand alliance’; Lalu Prasad Yadav to declare seat-sharing tomorrow

Earlier SP had sought 17 seats which now has been revised and a final claim for 12 seats has been given to the RJD chief.

Earlier SP had sought 17 seats which now has been revised and a final claim for 12 seats has been given to the RJD chief.

The Bihar unit of Samajwadi Party, which had protested over denial of seats in the grand alliance for Bihar Assembly polls, on Saturday claimed to have fruitful talks with the alliance partners RJD President Lalu Prasad and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar over seat sharing. A solution has been found and Prasad has assured the party to make a declaration in this regard by tomorrow, SP Bihar president Ramchandra Singh Yadav told reporters here. Earlier SP had sought 17 seats which now has been revised and a final claim for 12 seats has been given to the RJD chief on which a decision would be taken, Yadav said. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bihar SP chief said his party wants to prepare for a successful rally of the grand alliance in Patna on August 30 and expressed confidence that a solution of seats would be reached before it. After the declaration of seats, a programme would be finalised for participation of SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav in the August 30 rally, he added.At a joint press conference of JD(U), RJD and Congress on August 12, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar had announced seat sharing among partners of grand alliance in which 100 seats each were announced for the first two parties while Congress was given 40 seats. NCP got three but there was none for SP. RJD President Lalu Prasad had said that Mulayam Singh Yadav was his relative and if need arose, he would accommodate his party.Peeved over denial of seats, the SP had sat on a dharna for four days that ended after the intervention of party General Secretary Kiranmoy Nanda.

Amit Shah gets trapped in elevator, Lalu says ‘such fat people’ shouldn’t have entered lift

Reacting to the incident, former Bihar CM Lalu said that such fat people shouldn’t enter lifts in Patna as those are small in size

Amit Shah

In a comment which is likely to spark controversy, Lalu Prasad has mocked the unfortunate incident of BJP President Amit Shah getting trapped in a lift for 40 minutes.Reacting to the incident, former Bihar CM Lalu said that such fat people shouldn’t enter lifts in Patna as those are small in size! BJP President Amit Shah and three other senior leaders were trapped in the lift of the state guest house here for around 40 minutes, throwing the security and party officials into a tizzy.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>They were finally rescued by CRPF who broke open the steel door to rescue the senior BJP leader. With agency inputs

Stand up comedians beware! Lalu imitating Modi is the funniest gag ever!

Lalu Prasad Yadav is a man who likes his theatrics and that was on display as he mimicked Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s oratorical skills while giving a speech in Patna.

File Photo

Lalu Prasad Yadav is a man who likes his theatrics and that was on display as he mimicked Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s oratorical skills while giving a speech in Patna. Mimicking Modi’s speech in Patna, the former Bihar Chief Minister mocked Modi’s style of speaking and his last speech in Patna. Earlier Lalu Yadav’s son, Tejashwi Yadav had mocked Narendra Modi on Twitter. Around a week ago, Lalu had said: “Narendra Modi has given a new low to the standards of a prime minister. People are looking at him as a joke now,” Prasad said in a tweet. The Prime Minister should ask his friend Amit Shah what else he has learnt in addition to falsehood, mis-campaign and dividing people from the jail.””Those generating fear of ‘jungle raj-2’ are…themselves afraid of ‘Mandal raj-2’. This election will be Mandal raj-2 versus kamandal raj-2,” the RJD chief said referring to the return of the 1990 electoral fight that was dominated by the Mandal Commission report issue versus Ayodhya episode.

What does PM Modi’s Rs 1.25 lakh crore Bihar package include?

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced Rs 1.25 lakh crore special package for Bihar.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi waves during laying of the foundation stone of four-lane Patna-Buxar road and a bridge parallel to the Abdul Bari bridge over river Sone at Koilwar near Ara on Tuesday.

PTI photo
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday announced a stupendous Rs 1.25 lakh crore economic package for poll-bound Bihar, raising the stakes in the high-pitched electoral battle, a must-win for BJP after its Delhi decimation. He said the package, whose details he did not disclose, will be in addition to the ongoing development projects worth over Rs 40,000 crore already being funded by the Centre.According to a Press Information Bureau of India release, out of the 1.25 lakh crore package, the biggest chunk of funds has been approved for highway and road building projects. Rs 54, 713 crore has been allotted for highways which includes 2775 kilometres of National Highways to work on four-laning and widening. It also includes Construction of bridges across Ganga, Sone and Kosi rivers; also includes 12 Rail overbridges. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Another Rs 3094 crores has been allotted for farmers’ welfare which includes Upgradation of Rajendra Prasad Agriculture University to Central University. It also includes construction of new godowns for foodgrains among other agendas. The next big chunk is given to Petroleum and Gas sectors worth Rs 21,476 crores. The expansion of Barauni Refinery, a new Petrochemical plant and new LPG plants is included in this among other highlights in the break up. For the Electricity sector, Rs 16,130 crore has been allotted which includes a new power plant at Buxor, electrification of villages under Deen Dayal Upadhyay Gram Vidyut Yojana and Electrification of towns-cities under Integrated Power Development Scheme. Rural Road Development bagged Rs 13,820 crore while Railways got Rs 8,870 crores which includes doubling and tripling of 676 kms of Railway line. PM Modi inaugurated the first phase of Skill Development Centre in Bihar. He laid the foundation stone of the state’s first regional Vocational Training Institute for Women in Patna. The Skill Development sector got Rs 1,550 crore for the establishment of Mega Skill University and for the training of 1 lakh youth. Tourism and Health sectors were allotted Rs 600 crore each. The Education sector was allotted Rs 1,000 crore which includes an IIM at Bodhgaya and Central University near Bhagalpur. For the construction of a new airport at Patna and the development of the airports at Gaya, Raxaul and Purnea, the Airport sector was allotted Rs 2,700 crore. The Digital sector bagged Rs 449 crore for new Software Technology Parks, Rural BPOs and training sectors. This will also include 30 WiFi hotspots across prominent tourist places and 1,000 new Mobile towers to increase coverage and quality. Adding to this, is the leftover Rs 8,282 crores from an earlier 2013 package, Rs 12,375 cr from ongoing works of National Highways and Rs 20,000 crore UMPP (Ultra Mega Power Project) in Banka under PPP. It adds up to a total of Rs 40, 657 crores in addition to the Rs 1.25 lakh crore package. (Image Source: PIC Website)(Image Source: PIC Website)

Late former President APJ Abdul Kalam remembered at Independence day celebrations in Bihar

The Bihar government celebrated Independence day by displaying a tableau showing the contributions made by late former President APJ Abdul Kalam to the state.

PTI
Bihar government on Saturday fondly remembered late former President A P J Abdul Kalam by displaying a tableau to highlight his bonding with the state and contribution to its development, on the occasion of 69th Independence day celebration in Patna.Information and Public Relations Department chose President Kalam and Bihar as its theme of tableau which was on display at the Independence day function at Gandhi maidan. Chief Minister Nitish Kumar took the salute at the state-level function at the Independence day.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The tableau richly showcased Kalam’s visit to various places in the state including Paliganj in Patna district where he made valuable suggestions to farmers to increase farm productivity. On choosing the “people’s President” as theme, Secretary IPRD Pratyay Amrit said, “This is a humble way to pay tributes to the phenomenal personality (Kalam)”.President Kalam had made several trips to Bihar during his tenure and even after leaving the office. On invitation of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, President Kalam had come to Patna and addressed joint session of both Houses Bihar Legislature in 2006 during which he made a 10-point suggestions for development of the state.During one of his visit to Darbhanga, he inspired to roll out Mobile Science Laboratory in 2010 to impart knowledge in science to children particularly in rural areas of the state. The MSL van was launched in 2010 on the suggestion of Kalam by Manas Bihari Verma, his former colleague in the Aeronautical Development Agency, Bengaluru.

PM Modi to lay foundation for four-lane road in Bihar

Patna, Aug 14 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone of a four-lane road connecting Patna and Buxar when he visits Bihar on 18 August to address a BJP rally, an official said on Friday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi. PTIPrime Minister Narendra Modi. PTI

Prime Minister Narendra Modi. PTI

The prime minister will visit Ara town in Bhojpur district, about 60 km from here, before addressing the Bharatiya Janata Party rally at Saharsa.

Bhojpur District Magistrate Birendra Prasad Yadav said the district administration was told about Modi’s visit to the four-lane site by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI).

Modi has already addressed two election rallies in Muzaffarpur and Gaya ahead of the Bihar assembly polls.

IANS

Bihar Polls: JD(U), RJD to contest 100 seats each, Congress 40 seats, announces Nitish

Addressing media, Nitish Kumar said, “A consensus has been developed on seat sharing between all three parties (RJD, JD(U) and Cong) of ‘Maha gathbandhan’. JD(U) and RJD will contest on 100 seats, and Congress will contest on 40 seats. The parties would hold a Swabhiman Rally in Patna’s Gandhi Maidan on August 30.”

ANI
Janata Dal (United) and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) will contest for 100 seats each while the Congress will fight for 40 seats in the 243 member Assembly, announced Nitish Kumar on Wednesday.Addressing media, Nitish Kumar said, “A consensus has been developed on seat sharing between all three parties (RJD, JD(U) and Congress) of ‘Maha gathbandhan’. JD(U) and RJD will contest for 100 seats, and Congress will contest for 40 seats. The parties would hold a Swabhiman Rally in Patna’s Gandhi Maidan on August 30.”<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Lalu Prasad Yadav said, “Wherever there are differences, Nitish Kumar and Lalu Yadav will sit together and solve it. We are united and will defeat the BJP.”Criticising PM Modi for his DNA remarks, Lalu said, “The PM has insulted the people of Bihar, the people will teach him a lesson.”Stating that the people who have insulted him have insulted Bihar, Nitish Kumar added, “We will keep our promise before the people. PM Modi should tell what he has done in the last 15 months. We will seek the votes from people on the basis of the work we have done.”Congress leader CP Joshi said that the party leadership will also participate in Maha Gathbandhan’s first rally (Swabhimaan rally) to be held at Gandhi Maidan.

Bihar elections: Nitish Kumar government to provide clothes to landless, poor

The Nitish Kumar government on Tuesday approved a programme to provide clothes like dhoti, sari, blankets and sheets to landless and helpless sections of the society.

Nitish Kumar

PTI photo
The Nitish Kumar government on Tuesday approved a programme to provide clothes like dhoti, sari, blankets and sheets to landless and helpless sections of the society.The programme of the state Social Welfare Department was approved at a meeting of the state cabinet presided over by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.Under the non-plan social security programme in fiscal 2015-16, landless, poor and those living on alms and helpless would be given dhoti, sari, sheets and woollen blankets, an official statement said in Patna.The cabinet sanctioned Rs 1 crore for the purpose. The state government also gave its nod to 36 items at the meeting.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The meeting approved a proposal to provide facility of convertible leave to state government officials for medical care of husband/wife and son/daughter. In another important decision, the cabinet gave green signal to a proposal to increase honorarium of Tola sevaks and teachers and volunteers of Talimi Markaz centres from Rs 5,000 to Rs 8,000 per month. They would also be provided a compensation of Rs four lakh in case of death in harness.Around 20,000 Tola sevaks and 10,000 teachers and volunteers of Talimi Markaz centres would benefit from this.The Bihar cabinet gave its nod to a proposal of the Cabinet department to organise a function on ‘Martyrs’ Day’ every year on August 16 in honour of four martyrs of the 1942 Quit India movement.

Bihar polls 2015: CEC Nasim Zaidi meets district officials to discuss security plans for the upcoming elections

He said that the the EC’s district level officials were asked to propagate information about the entire electoral process so citizens left out will able to register to vote. He spoke about when the photo voter list would be available, “The photo voter list has to be distributed at least 5 days before. We have issued a helpline 1950 on district level, for assistance.”

Nasim Zaidi (Source: Election Commission of India website)

Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Nasim Zaidi and other senior Election Commission officials on Saturday met district-level officials to discuss security plans for the Bihar assembly elections. They had arrived in Patna yesterday to assess preparations for the upcoming polls.He said that the the EC’s district level officials were asked to propagate information about the entire electoral process so citizens left out will able to register to vote. He spoke about when the photo voter list would be available, “The photo voter list has to be distributed at least 5 days before. We have issued a helpline 1950 on district level, for assistance.” <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Zaidi said that that voter list given to the candidates and the one available with the presiding officer will have to be identical. “Good thing about electoral rolls here (Patna) is that there is 99.98% photo electoral roll,” he added. He spoke about the requests made by political parties. He said that they had asked the EC to make effective arrangements so that weaker sections do not feel threatened. “They have highlighted the need to maintain social and communal harmony during election process. They have requested the Election Commission to take appropriate steps so that communal harmony is maintained all throughout the process,” Zaidi said.He said that the parties have requested the Election Commission to establish a single window system so that they are able to get permissions in time.He ensured that the district officials were ordered to field level machinery on basis of feedback received from parties and some of seior officials suggestions. “We have directed them that they will have to re-dedicate themselves to conduct fair, peaceful and voter friendly,” he said.The assembly polls in Bihar, slated for late this year, will be a heated affair, with six parties having merged under the Janata Parivar banner contesting against the BJP and the Congress.

IndiGo plane returns to Mumbai airport 20 mins after departure due to technical snag

A Delhi-bound IndiGo airlines plane with around 160 passengers on board today returned to the airport in Mumbai due to a techinal problem barely 20 minutes after take-off.

Flight 6E-178 took off at 9:45 AM from the Chhtrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai. It was on its way to Delhi
from where it would have proceeded to Patna, sources said.

“The flight was scheduled to depart at 9.30 AM but left only at 9.45 AM. But after being airborne for nearly 20
minutes, the first officer announced that the flight was returning to Mumbai due to some technical issue,” the sources said.

An IndiGo aircraft. ReutersAn IndiGo aircraft. Reuters

An IndiGo aircraft. Reuters

IndiGo spokesperson was not available for comments.

Leakage in the fuel system of the aircraft forced the pilot to take back the flight to the city, the sources claimed.

The Gurgaon-based budget airline’s on-time performance from the four key airports- Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad and
Bangalore- has taken a beating in the recent times compared to some of its rivals.

The airline’s on-time performance from these airports stood at 82.6 per cent in June with the lowest recorded from Mumbai where only 69.2 per cent of its total flights took off on time.

PTI

Bihar can’t grow without empowerment of women: Nitish Kumar

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Friday said development of the state was not possible without empowerment of women.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Friday said development of the state was not possible without empowerment of women.”Development of our state is not possible without development of women as they are an important half of our population,” Kumar said.The Chief Minister was speaking at the inauguration event of four new branches of HDFC Bank, including an all-women branch in the state capital. The other branches are located at Ara (Bhojpur), Saharsa and Saguna More on the outskirts of Patna.”I accepted the invitation to inaugurate the branches after I was told that one of the new branches will be an all- woman branch. This is a happy occasion. We want all-round development of women in the state. Our government provided 50 per cent reservation to women in appointment of teachers. We also started cycle and dress schemes for school girls,” he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Today, our schemes for empowerment of women are being discussed across the country and abroad. We were the first to provide 50 per cent reservation to women in the three-tier Panchayati Raj elections,” he added.Kumar said the people of the state still kept their money in banks only. They were not aware about investing in capital market and trust banks for safe keep of their earnings. The Chief Minister also pointed out that deposit in banks in the state was more, but the people here were getting very less loans in comparison to it.”The CD ratio in Bihar earlier used to be 30 to 32 per cent. It has now risen to 44% and is increasing slowly. The CD ratio of HDFC Bank in the state is 49% which is a thing to be appreciated,” he said.Kumar also praised the bank for contributing in micro- financing of women through Self Help Groups (SHG).The chief minister once again raised the demand for special status for the state on the occasion so that exemption to central taxes be provided to industry and investment would increase. He also called on the banks to promote and encourage entrepreneurs.The inauguration of four new HDFC Bank branches takes their tally to 80 in the state. It is operating 223 ATMs in the state and has 1,000 employees working in Patna.

Patna: BJP leader chased, shot dead by assailants

Police have got closed-circuit television footage from a temple which showed the attackers chasing and shooting Kumar.

Representative image

Local BJP leader Avinash Kumar was chased and shot dead from close quarters by three assailants when he was out for a morning walk near his house in the heart of Bihar capital on Thursday, with the incident being caught on CCTV.According to police, assailants pumped bullets into Kumar, general secretary of BJP’s Patna unit, near his residence near Daldali Road in the city. The incident sparked protest in the area. BJP MLAs created a ruckus in Bihar Assembly over the killing, alleging that the incident reflected the “deteriorating” law and order situation in the poll-bound state.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Police have got closed-circuit television footage from a temple which showed the attackers chasing and shooting Kumar. “The footage shows three assailants chasing Kumar on foot. They shot him and he fell on the road. One of the assailants then walked up to him and shot him in the head. All the attackers escaped after committing the crime,” a police officer said.Coordinated raids led by Patna Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Vikas Vaibhav are being conducted across the city to nab the persons involved in the crime. City SP (Central) Chandan Kumar Kushwaha and entire top brass of the city police are involved in the raids.Meanwhile, the news about Kumar’s murder spread like wildfire and residents of the area came out on roads to protest. They burnt tyres to block roads and staged a sit-in for a few hours demanding the arrest of the assailants and justice for the victim’s family.Several BJP leaders including Bankipur MLA Nitin Navin joined the protest against the killing. “Kumar was supposed to meet me today morning as we were to tour our constituency areas in view of the coming Assembly polls. I was waiting for him when news came that he has been shot dead around 6.30 AM near his house,” Navin said.The MLA said if police fail to arrest the culprits within 48 hours, he and his party will come out on roads to protest the deteriorating law and order situation in the city and state.BJP MLAs registered their protest in the Assembly and created a ruckus due to which the House was adjourned till 2 PM.

BJP leader Avinash Kumar shot dead in Patna, incident caught on CCTV

Patna: Local BJP leader Avinash Kumar was chased and shot dead from close quarters by three assailants when he was out for a morning walk near his house in the heart of Bihar capital on Thursday, with the incident being caught on CCTV.

According to police, assailants pumped bullets into Kumar, general secretary of BJP’s Patna unit, near his residence near Daldali Road in the city.

The incident sparked protest in the area. BJP MLAs created a ruckus in Bihar Assembly over the killing, alleging that the incident reflected the “deteriorating” law and order situation in the poll-bound state.

Representational image. AFPRepresentational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

Police have got closed-circuit television footage from a temple which showed the attackers chasing and shooting Kumar.

“The footage shows three assailants chasing Kumar on foot. They shot him and he fell on the road. One of the assailants then walked up to him and shot him in the head. All the attackers escaped after committing the crime,” a police officer said.

Coordinated raids led by Patna Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Vikas Vaibhav are being conducted across the city to nab the persons involved in the crime. City SP (Central) Chandan Kumar Kushwaha and entire top brass of the city police are involved in the raids.

Meanwhile, the news about Kumar’s murder spread like wildfire and residents of the area came out on roads to protest. They burnt tyres to block roads and staged a sit-in for a few hours demanding the arrest of the assailants and justice for the victim’s family.

Several BJP leaders including Bankipur MLA Nitin Navin joined the protest against the killing.

“Kumar was supposed to meet me today morning as we were to tour our constituency areas in view of the coming Assembly polls. I was waiting for him when news came that he has been shot dead around 6.30 AM near his house,” Navin said.

The MLA said if police fail to arrest the culprits within 48 hours, he and his party will come out on roads to protest the deteriorating law and order situation in the city and state.

BJP MLAs registered their protest in the Assembly and created a ruckus due to which the House was adjourned till 2 PM.

PTI

36 seats in Bihar to have EVMs with paper trail facility

The 243-seat state Assembly is scheduled to go to polls during October-November and the full bench of EC led by Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Nasim Zaidi will travel to Patna later this week to review the poll arrangements.

evm

Thirty-six constituencies in Bihar will have EVMs armed with the voter-verified paper audit trail (VVPAT) during the forthcoming Assembly polls in Bihar.The EC has ordered that the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs), post-2005-version, from Maharashtra and Jharkhand and VVPATs from Haryana, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Mizoram, Delhi and Tamil Nadu be “shifted” to Bihar for the purpose, sources said on Wednesday.VVPAT is a method of providing feedback to voters using a ballotless voting system. An EVM will have a small attachment to it which after pressing the button for a desired candidate, will print that name on a paper. It will be stored inside the machine and can be used in case of any controversy over the final result. Some of the Assembly seats which will have these machines at select polling booths include Bhagalpur, Katihar, Purnia, Munger, Saharsa, Rohtas, Begusarai, Aurangabad, Buxar, Kishanganj, Jahanabad, Nawada, Sitamarhi, Samstipur, Araria, Jamul, Vaishali, Patna and Siwan among others.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The 243-seat state Assembly is scheduled to go to polls during October-November and the full bench of EC led by Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Nasim Zaidi will travel to Patna later this week to review the poll arrangements.

Engineering admissions may not consider Class XII marks any more

With delay in submission of Class XII scores, engineering institutes except for IIT may not consider the score any more.

dna Research & Archives
Students applying to central engineering institutes, except the IITs, in 2016 or 2017 may not be required to submit their Class XII marks if the request of Central Seat Allocation Board (CSAB) is accepted by the HRD ministry, a leading daily reports.Academic sessions in top institutes started a little late this year because of the delay in joint seat allocation process. This was because of a delay by the boards to submit scores to CBSE. This prompted the CSAB to consider taking admissions using JEE (Main) scores alone.MP Singh, coordinator of the CSAB from NIT-Patna and part of JoSAA 2015 told the newspaper,”Many of the 47 higher secondary boards in the country are not sending their scores on time to the CBSE. Keeping in mind students’ interests, we will be asking the apex body to conduct admissions only on the basis of the JEE (Main) scores.” This means that the 40% weightage given to a student’s Class XII scores will now be removed from the admission process to government funded technical institutes such as NITs. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In the report, another JoSAA official on this year’s admissions to top institutes said, “There were some students whose marks were higher than what they actually scored in their Class XII. Such students managed to get a seat on the basis of the ‘hiked’ score in the joint seat allocation process.” A sub-committee as been formed by the joint entrance examination apex board to review the process of JEE (Main) rank allotment. The process of conducting the exams may also be reviewed to give candidates a break before they appear for the tests.The report says that the competitive exam may be held earlier next year as the admission process requires more time.

Denial of special status to Bihar cruel joke, says Nitish Kumar

Kumar was reacting to Union Minister of State for Planning Rao Inderjit Singh’s statement in Lok Sabha on July 31 that “There is no proposal as of now to grant special status to any state. There is a proposal to give special package. Their conscience is not clear,” he said.

Nitish Kumar

File Photo
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday attacked Narendra Modi government for ruling out special category status to the state despite promising it during parliamentary poll campaign. “People should understand this betrayal… Its a cruel joke with the people of Bihar,” Kumar told reporters outside the Legislative Council.Kumar was reacting to Union Minister of State for Planning Rao Inderjit Singh’s statement in Lok Sabha on July 31 that “There is no proposal as of now to grant special status to any state. There is a proposal to give special package. Their conscience is not clear,” he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Kumar, who would be the face of secular alliance in the coming assembly election, said his party would continue to play audio recording of Modi’s speech promising special category status, special package and special attention to Bihar when a BJP led government would be formed at the Centre. Kumar also took a jibe at the PM for flagging off a Patna-Mumbai Express which the Railway latter said will not be a regular train but will run only on demand from passengers.”There cannot be a bigger joke than this,” Kumar said on flagging off Suvidha Express by the PM during his Patna visit on July 25 in which the CM was also present.”Earlier we had heard about people standing in queue to board a train but this is for the first time we are hearing that people have to stand in queue to demand running of a train,” he said. “Its the rarest of rare event. The train he flagged off would run only when people would place demand for it like they do to book a train for marriage or some other special occasion,” Kumar, who himself served as Railway minister during the AB Vajpayee led NDA regime, said.Kumar said he was waiting to see the announcements made by the PM regarding special package to Bihar. “Its clear-cut violation of concept of ‘cooperative federalism’ by ignoring the state and promising to announce a special package for Bihar from a political platform to derive political mileage,” he said ahead of the PM’s visit to Bihar on August 9, 18 and 23 at Gaya, Saharsa and Bhagalpur respectively to drum up support for BJP in the assembly poll.

Lalu Prasad and several supporters arrested as RJD bandh cripples life in Bihar

332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from discharge of duty), 431 (mischief by injury to public road), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of peace), 506 (criminal intimidation).
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RJD President Lalu Prasad and several of his supporters were arrested on Monday in Patna while trying to enforce the day-long Bihar bandh called by his party as the shutdown adversely affected life across the state.Patna Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Vikas Vaibhav said, “Prasad has been arrested along with his supporters while enforcing bandh. He has been taken to the camp jail of Bihar Military Police – 5 located on the outskirts of Patna. He might be given bail if the sections imposed are bailable ones.”<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>An FIR has been registered against Prasad at Kotwali police station under sections 147 (rioting), 149 (unlawful assembly), 341 (wrongful restraint), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of duty, 323 (voluntarily causing hurt).332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from discharge of duty), 431 (mischief by injury to public road), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of peace), 506 (criminal intimidation).The bandh disrupted normal life as few trains were halted by lathi-wielding mobs, which also forced few shops and educational institutions to shut operations. The working of the Patna High Court was also hit. Officials said several judges got delayed in reaching the High Court due to the bandh and wanted to know if the state government was supporting it. They also questioned the security preparedness of the state government.Earlier, Prasad had come out from his residence riding a ‘tamtam’ or ‘tonga’ (a single-horse drawn carriage) draped with his party colours and symbol. He and his hundreds of supporters then proceeded towards Dak Bungalow crossing, the nerve centre of city traffic, enforcing bandh all the way.”Our motive is to demand caste census data and remove BJP from power. ‘BJP hatao, desh bachao’ (Remove BJP, save the country) because it is ‘Bharat Jalao Party’. The bandh is a huge success. I have never seen this type of bandh in my life except during the JP movement,” Prasad said.The RJD chief denied any untoward incident by his party workers anywhere in the state and asserted that “youths have punctured BJP”. He also gave the call to remove Narendra Modi from the post of Prime Minister.Officials said shops remained shut, colleges and educational institutions were forced to close down, roads including national highways were blocked and vehicles were attacked during the shut-down called by RJD.Hordes of RJD supporters armed with sticks and canes were seen burning tyres and bamboos at busy thoroughfares in the state capital. They also disrupted classes and forcibly closed colleges affiliated to Patna University, officials said.