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BJP gleeful over articles in Congress mouthpiece slamming Nehru, Sonia; says truth hidden has come out

“Congress should give clarification and Gandhi too should offer some,” he said. As Congress sacked the content editor, BJP secretary Shrikant Sharma mocked it, saying it showed the party’s “intolerance against truth” as most of what had appeared was a “matter of fact”.

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Dalit children burnt alive: BJP accuses Congress of giving ‘caste colour’ to the incident

Two children of a Dalit family died and their parents suffered burn injuries after their home was set on fire, allegedly by upper-caste Rajputs in Sunpedh, a village in Faridabad near Delhi, in the early hours of Tuesday.

Dalit Community members shout slogans against Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar after his visit to Sunpedh village where a dalits house was set on fire allegedly by men belonging to the upper-caste community, in Ballabhgarh in Faridabad on Thursday.

PTI
BJP hit out at the Congress on Thursday for giving “caste colour” to the killing of two Dalit children in Faridabad, calling it “height of insensitivity” that must be condemned. BJP secretary Shrikant Sharma said the incident was born out of enmity between two families and noted that three members of the other family were killed earlier.”It is nothing but frustration on the part of those who are giving this incident a caste colour. This is height of insensitivity. We condemn it,” he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Two children of a Dalit family died and their parents suffered burn injuries after their home was set on fire, allegedly by upper-caste Rajputs in Sunpedh, a village in Faridabad near Delhi, in the early hours of Tuesday.Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi had visited the family yesterday and alleged that weak people were being suppressed under the BJP government.”It was time for such people to do introspection over how many Dalits were killed when they were in power,” Sharma said, in a reference to incidents of violence against Dalits when Congress was power at the Centre as well as Haryana.BJP appreciates Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar’s decision to refer the case to CBI for investigation, he said.Related read- Dalit children burnt alive: 3 more accused arrested, 4 still absconding

Number crunch in Rajya Sabha forces Modi to rely on states for land reform

In the first direct blow to his ambitious economic reform agenda, Prime Minister Narendra Modi‘s government has had to row back on a business-friendly land bill amid fierce parliamentary opposition.

The government has not given up on making it easier to acquire land needed to kick-start hundreds of billions of dollars in stalled projects, but after failing to win support in Parliament may ask states to pass their own laws.

Caught in number game. PTICaught in number game. PTI

Caught in number game. PTI

“We realise that currently we don’t have the numbers to pass it,” a leader in Modi’s ruling party told Reuters. “By reducing the heat on this we will be able to get other things passed.”

After sweeping to power last year on expectations he would accelerate an economic transformation that began in the 1990s, Modi is struggling to build support in parliament, where his party is in the minority in the Upper House.

Having staked so much capital on an unpopular issue, Modi risks losing the initiative to the opposition and fuelling perceptions that his reform plans are not necessarily going to improve the lot of India’s 1.27 billion people.

“This is a huge setback for Modi,” said Sanjay Kumar, an analyst at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies. “This is an indication that if bills are controversial, this government is going to find it very difficult to pass them.”

Problems in Parliament

In the next sitting of parliament due to start on Tuesday, the government wants to ease the passage of the biggest overhaul of taxes since independence in 1947, and may also introduce the first major labour reforms in decades.

The BJP will have to fend off opposition attacks in the rowdy houses over allegations of corruption, and does not want to rile opponents further over the land law.Land reform is critical for Modi’s drive to build new roads, homes and factories and, if stalled would blight his vision of 100 new ‘smart’ cities across India linked by industrial corridors and high-speed rail routes criss-crossing the country.

In the last seven months, Modi has had to issue temporary executive orders that allow the government to forcibly purchase farmland for industrial development, but has failed to secure the votes in Parliament to make the changes permanent.

Senior BJP leader Shrikant Sharma told Reuters the government would continue to work with opposition parties to pass the law, but if that failed, it would work with individual states to implement their own versions of the legislation.

“The opposition can’t stop our agenda, it can only delay it,” he said, in comments echoed by a senior cabinet minister.

Eight states where the BJP is the largest party could press ahead with passing their own laws, but that would risk creating a patchwork of regulations that could further hold up stalled infrastructure projects worth $300 billion.

Opposition parties have joined forces to portray the proposed changes to the land act, including exemption from getting consent of 80 percent of landowners for some projects, as anti-farmer, a damaging charge in a mostly rural country.

On Wednesday, opposition leaders boycotted Modi’s latest attempt to build consensus around the issue.

“I certainly hope that the reality dawns on them. The whole country is against this bill,” said Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia.

In a sign the government is delaying a push on the bill, four senior government officials on Thursday failed to appear before a joint parliamentary committee examining the proposed changes to the law, and their report will now be delayed by two weeks, according to a member of the panel.

That would effectively rule out progress on land during the three-week ‘monsoon’ session of parliament.

“It is now almost clear that there would be no consensus on the amendments,” the person said, asking not to be named. “Members have taken a line almost identical to their party stands. There is no scope for reaching a common ground.”

Reuters

BJP President Amit Shah gives key roles to confidants, sets up new departments

The constitution of the new departments comes after Shah had dissolved all cells of the organization a few months ago and a need was being felt to tone up the party’s media presence in the wake of mounting attacks by opposition on BJP governments at the Centre and states.

BJP President Amit Shah on Monday restructured the party set-up assigning key roles to his confidants Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, Kailash Vijayvargiya and MJ Akbar and constituting new departments relating to good governance, coordination with states and media relations.The constitution of the new departments comes after Shah had dissolved all cells of the organization a few months ago and a need was being felt to tone up the party’s media presence in the wake of mounting attacks by opposition on BJP governments at the Centre and states. There are 18 departments in the newly set-up including the one on Good Governance, Central and State Government programmes co-ordination for which Shah appointed party vice President Sahasrabuddhe, Sidharth Nath Singh, Mahesh Giri and Raj Shekhar.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Sahasrabuddhe has also been given the task of running the new department of Policy Research along with the Director of Shyama Prasad Mookerjee Foundation Anirban Ganguly and Vikshut. Party’s National Secretary Shrikant Sharma has once again been assigned the task of running the media cell. He was earlier the head of the media cell.In a first of its kind, the party has set up a media relations department to help improve is media outreach, which will be run by veteran journalist and party MP M J Akbar, Shrikant Sharma, Sidharth Nath Singh, Anil Baluni and Swadesh Verma. Party General Secretary Bhupendra Yadav will look after Election Management.Party general secretary Murlidhar Rao has been asked to look after Training department as in-charge in which he will be assisted by Mahesh Sharma, Convenor, and Sunil Pande as Co-Convenor. Rao is already working on the training of party’s new members. Vijayvargiya, along with Akbar, will also take care of the new department of political feedback and response.

BJP announces new state in-charges

The new state in charges include Siddharth Nath Singh for Andhra Pradesh, Shrikant Sharma for Himachal Pradesh, Nalin Kohli for Meghalaya and Kailash Vijayvargiya for West Bengal.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday announced new state in-charges, co-incharges and morcha-incharges for the party.The new state in charges include Siddharth Nath Singh for Andhra Pradesh, Shrikant Sharma for Himachal Pradesh, Nalin Kohli for Meghalaya and Kailash Vijayvargiya for West Bengal. While Shyam Jaju will be the new BJP in-charge for Delhi, O.P. Mathur will be in-charge of Uttar Pradesh. The state in-charge for Bihar, where the crucial assembly elections are scheduled to be held later this year, is Bhupendra Yadav.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Additionally, Saroj Pandey and Prabhat Jha will be in charge of Maharashtra and Chandigarh respectively.

Arvind Kejriwal’s real face stands exposed: BJP

Accusing AAP leaders of having “lust for power” and being “opportunists”, BJP on Friday dared Arvind Kejriwal to clarify the accusations made by his own party men and said his “real face stands exposed” before the entire nation.

Accusing AAP leaders of having “lust for power” and being “opportunists”, BJP on Friday dared Arvind Kejriwal to clarify the accusations made by his own party men and said his “real face stands exposed” before the entire nation.BJP also said as per allegations made by their own people in a sting in which he is seeking to wrest power in Delhi, AAP has no transparency and democracy within and its tall claims of preaching idealism and ‘swaraj’ today stands belied.”Kejriwal speaks a lot about exposing the wrongdoings of others, but his own people have done an expose on him. Their own people have unveiled their ‘naqab’ (veil).”Kejriwal should clarify on the charges levelled by his own people in the sting. Why is he silent? His silences endorses that the things that have come out in the open are true,” BJP national secretary Shrikant Sharma said.
He said the AAP leaders preached a lot of idealism and transparency but as per the charges made by their own people, the same stood exposed and the party emerged no different and was like any other political outfit like BSP, SP, RJD, AIADMK and DMK that was run by individuals.”Kejriwal has not been able to give a convincing answer to the allegations made by his own leaders. Those who talked of internal Lokpal, their real face today stands exposed before the country and their ‘naqaab’ (veil) has fallen off,” he said.The BJP leader said the expose and the allegations have come as a shocker to many who thought they were different.But, they have come out as one who indulge in “low-level politics” and serves their own personal interests.”They are not idealists but opportunists. They indulge in low-level politics. We demand that all that have come out against you in the expose showing politics of lust for power and dubious funding, should at least be to probed,” he said.
A purported conversation featuring the voice of Kejriwal, where he is heard using expletives against dissident leaders Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan, surfaced today that was described by AAP as a “conspiracy”.

We have right to question government over ‘boat’ issue: Congress

PTI
Rejecting BJP’s charge of playing “dirty politics” over the ‘bomb’ boat issue, Congress on Monday said doubts have been raised in the public realm and it has the right as principal opposition party to question the government.Party spokesman Randeep Surjewala responded to BJP’s allegation by saying that branding as “Pakistani” those raising questions over the matter goes against the basic tenets of democracy. “We would request our friends in BJP to stop branding every Indian citizen asking questions as a Pakistani, for that goes against the very tenets of democracy,” he told reporters here.”As a primary opposition party, it is our responsibility that whenever in public life divisions crop up in different agencies of the government, we are in a position to put forward questions on behalf of the people to the government,” he said. Noting that Congress appreciates the brave action by the Indian Coast Guard on December 31, Surjewala said, “We request the BJP that matters of national security should not be used for self-manisfested PR exercises.”His remarks came in response to charge by BJP National Secretary Shrikant Sharma that Congress was playing “dirty politics” over the boat issue. In a mid-sea operation, a suspected Pakistani boat was intercepted by the Coast Guard in the Arabian Sea in the intervening night of December 21 and January one after which it caught fire and exploded with all four crew members on board. While the government maintains that its occupants were “suspected terrorists” carrying explosives, there have been reports that they may have been smugglers.

Congress asks government to ‘come clean’ on Pakistani boat issue; BJP hits back, says it’s advocating cause of terrorists

Congress has asked the government to “come clean” on the Pakistani boat issue and explain “which terrorist organisation” was behind the episode that unfolded on the high seas. However, BJP hit back at Congress and accused the opposition party of advocating the cause of terrorists.”Government should come clean on it. There is no evidence. How can you say that a terrorist attack was prevented?”How did they (government) come to the conclusion that it was a terrorist boat? It is very strange. Nothing has been explained. Which terrorist organisation was behind it?” party spokesperson Ajoy Kumar said citing media reports which have questioned the government version about the interception and the subsequent blast on board and sinking of the fishing boat.Hitting back at Congress, BJP accused the opposition party of advocating the cause of terrorists and being soft on terror due to its “vote-bank politics”.”There is nothing new in the Congress speaking the language of terrorists. Congress has a history of advocating the cause of terrorists, be it those creating terror within the country or emanating from Pakistan. Congress is soft on terror due to its vote-bank politics,” BJP national secretary Shrikant Sharma said.He said soon after coming to power in 2004 one of the first actions of the Congress government was to abolish the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA) and later tried to divert the attention of people of the country from terror on incidents like the Bhatla House encounter, the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, the Bodhgaya and Patna bomb blasts.”Congress tried to divert the attention from terror by making wild allegations against BJP without any evidence that also led to lowering the morale of the armed forces,” he said.In a midnight operation off the coast of Gujarat, a Pakistani fishing boat said to be carrying explosives was intercepted by the Indian Coast Guard before it exploded and caught fire and sunk with four crew members on board.The incident, which occurred on the intervening night of December 31, 2014, and Jan. 1 some 365-km off the Porbander coast, is being regarded in some quarters as being reminiscent of the 2008 Mumbai terror strike.However, there has been no official confirmation of that conjecture with the Defence Ministry merely stating that the boat from Keti Bunder near Karachi “was planning some illicit transaction” in the Arabian Sea.Meanwhile, a search is underway for the wreckage of the mysterious boat — which exploded after being hunted down by the Indian Coast Guard in the Arabian Sea — as also the bodies of its four occupants, which will be crucial for investigators to reach a conclusion about their intent.Speaking last night, BJP national secretary Shrikant Sharma complimented the security forces for the action and said that the episode constituted “yet another attempt by a frustrated Pakistan in aiding terror activities in India”. (With agency inputs)

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