Modi govt 1-man show: Shatrughan Sinha

The Paradoxical Prime Minister, Narendra Modi And His India, penned by Thiruvananthapuram MP and Congress leader Shashi Tharoor. The actor-turned-politician, who has often been critical of the various policies of the Narendra Modi-led NDA government, said people of the country needed jobs and better facilities instead of promises and jumlas (rhetoric). “I am not just talking about Rs 15 lakh. I am not against him (Modi). I am personally against the one-man show and the two-men army. They are running the country. What kind of scene is this?” Sinha asked. Sinha further said that some people had asked him that being an actor, why was he expressing his opinions on demonetisation, GST and other issues. “If a lawyer can talk on financial issues, without having any experience and knowledge, if a TV actress can become the HRD minister, and a tea-seller, though he never was one but thanks to media propaganda, can reach this height, then why can’t I,” he asked. The former Union minister said he had enough experience in the film industry to speak about demonetisation in the national interest. Sinha said people can decide whether the prime minister was paradoxical or absurd after reading Tharoor’s book. Meanwhile, Tharoor invited Sinha to join the Congress saying there was “room for a hero” like him. He also lashed out at Modi and said that despite being an exceptional orator, the prime minister mysteriously goes silent every time a Dalit or a Muslim gets flogged. “He is the most eloquent prime minister in recent memory. But when a Dalit is flogged or a Dalit student commits suicide or a Muslim Air Force havildar’s father is beaten to death on false suspicion of having beef, this eloquent prime minister becomes mysteriously silent. This is one paradox. This book is full of paradoxes. You have somebody who says something and does the opposite,” he added. Tharoor also pointed to the report of Ministry of Home Affairs which said 97 per cent of incidents of communal violence related to cow protection since Independence happened during this regime. “Am not denigrating the prime minister through this book. You don’t require 500 pages to do that. I have documented his career growth and analysed his four-and-a-half-year growth in the book. This is a biographical profile of Modi,” Tharoor said. Leader of Opposition in the Kerala Assembly Ramesh Chennithala, former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and other leaders also participated in the event. (PTI)]]>

#Rafale: SC clears govt process, bins pleas

CJI Ranjan Gogoi says ‘there is no reason for interference in the choice of offset partner and perception of individuals can’t be the basis for roving inquiry in sensitive issue of defence procurement’. #RafaleDeal

— ANI (@ANI) December 14, 2018 The court said nobody questioned the procurement of Rafale jets when deal was finalised in September 2016. It added that questions were raised on the jet deal only after former French president Francois Hollande came out with the statement. This cannot be the basis of judicial review, it said. The court said it cannot compel the government to procure 126 or 36 fighter jets. That depends on its decision. The verdict was pronounced on a batch of pleas seeking a court-monitored probe into deal. The apex court reserved its verdict on the batch of pleas on November 14. Advocate ML Sharma was the first petitioner in the case. Later, another lawyer Vineet Dhanda had moved the apex court with the plea for court-monitored probe into the deal. AAP leader Sanjay Singh has also filed a petition against the fighter jet deal. After the three petitions were filed, former Union ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie along with activist advocate Prashant Bhushan moved the apex court with a plea for a direction to the CBI to register FIR for alleged irregularities in the deal. (PTI)]]>

#FarmersMarch: Activists haul up Centre

Farmers rise! @newssting1 cartoon #FarmersMarch pic.twitter.com/LGAoPiaDe8

— Satish Acharya (@satishacharya) November 30, 2018 They were stopped near Parliament Street police station, after which they assembled there. Over 3,500 police personnel have been deployed on the route of the march. According to a senior police officer, special arrangements have been made in Central and New Delhi police districts. Farmers have come to the national capital from different parts of the country, including Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh. Banded under the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee, which claims to be an umbrella body of 207 organisations of farmers and agricultural workers, many farmers arrived in the city on trains, buses and other modes of transport. CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury, CPI leader S Sudhakar Reddy, AAP MP Sanjay Singh and former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah also joined the protesting farmers in the heart of Delhi. Reddy, the national secretary of the CPI, alleged that the BJP dispensation led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is most the “anti-farmer government”. “Modi government tried to pass the Land Acquisition (Amendment) Bill. But, as the opposition parties opposed it, the bill was not passed in the Rajya Sabha. If the BJP wins again then it will take steps to pass the controversial bill,” Reddy said. He alleged that the BJP government at the Centre has no wish to implement the Swaminathan Commission’s recommendation All farmers bodies across the country have been demanding implementation of the panel’s report. Yechury said, “This is the same police station (Parliament Street police station) where Bhagat Singh was taken into custody for throwing a bomb (in the Legislative Assembly).” “We have the power of votes, if the government does not change its stand, it will be overthrown,” he said, adding, from Kashmir to Kanyakumari the country is united and “we will remove Modi (in the next elections)”. Anjaan added that continuous neglect of farmers will “ensure Modi’s and the BJP’s downfall in 2019”. Swaraj India leader Yogendra Yadav said the protest – Kisan Mukti March 2018 – to Delhi is a historic development as not only farmers across the nation have been assembled under one platform but also it has enjoyed supports from all section of society. TMC leader Dinesh Trivedi said, “Farmers of India stands before us. This is India’s movement. Mamataji (Banerjee) has sent you love. If you have a strong resolve you can achieve everything. There are talks about loan waiver but should the farmer even have to take loans.” He also said this gathering was the “real parliament” and called for a special session of Parliament. NCP chief Sharad Pawar said the condition of farmers in the country needs to be changed but the government is “not sympathetic” towards their plight. (PTI)]]>

Rahul leads march to CBI HQ, courts arrest

WATCH | “Prime Minister acted against CBI Director as a result of panic, fear,” says Congress President Rahul Gandhi

Track updates here: https://t.co/3qibwoaQLI #CBIDirector #AlokVerma pic.twitter.com/tT8DcEVwVt — NDTV (@ndtv) October 26, 2018 There were no immediate reactions from the Prime Minister’s Office on Gandhi’s allegations. While Ambani has been consistently denying the allegations, the BJP has accused Gandhi of manufacturing lies everyday on the Rafale deal. “The truth will come out,” Gandhi said, adding that removing the CBI director will not impact the truth. Addressing the gathering of Congress protesters earlier in the day, Gandhi accused Modi of destroying institutions such as the CBI, the Election Commission and the Enforcement Directorate. Senior Congress leaders, including Gehlot, Ahmed Patel, Motilal Vora, Veerappa Moily and Anand Sharma, took part in the march that culminated in a demonstration ahead of the CBI headquarters. Loktantrik Janata Dal leader Sharad Yadav, CPI leader D Raja and TMC’s Nadimul Haque joined the protest. Carrying placards against the prime minister, the protesters walked the distance with scores of police personnel maintaining vigil and camera crews jostling with each other to capture the moment. One protester carried a placard depicting the CBI in a cage. Gandhi got on to a truck in front of the police barricades put up ahead of the CBI headquarters in the CGO complex to prevent the marchers from reaching the building. Gehlot said the decision to remove the CBI director was “illegal”. “The Chief Justice of India, the Leader of the Opposition and the prime minister can together take a decision to remove him, but not the prime minister alone,” he told reporters. “Our demand is to reinstate the CBI director… The prime minister should tender an apology to the nation for destroying the image of the premier investigating agency,” Gehlot added. The government has strongly defended its decision, saying it was “absolutely essential” to maintain the CBI’s institutional integrity and the move was based on recommendations by the Central Vigilance Commission. The Congress’ protests in the national capital were replicated in other parts of the country. State Congress leaders led demonstrations in their regions against what the Congress described as the “illegal, unconstitutional and illegitimate removal of the CBI Director by the Modi-Shah duo that has shamed India and its premier investigative agency”. In Patna, for instance, Congress workers, including scores of women, sat on a dharna outside the gate of the CBI office at Bailey Road, carrying placards, reading ‘Save CBI Save Democracy’. Alleging that the prime minister is experiencing ‘Rafale-o-Phobia’, the opposition party said the “demolition of the CBI” was prompted by fears that the director was going to conduct a probe into the fighter jet deal. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has dismissed as “rubbish” the allegations by the Opposition that Verma was removed because he was collecting documents on the Rafale fighter jet deal. The government sent Verma and Special Director Rakesh Asthana, who have accused each other of corruption, on leave on Tuesday. It also transferred several CBI officials and appointed M Nageswara Rao as the interim chief of the agency. The Congress protest was held soon after the matter came up in the Supreme Court. The apex court said former Supreme Court judge AK Patnaik will oversee a CVC inquiry into the allegations and counter allegations and the report has to be placed before it within two weeks. It directed that interim CBI chief M Nageswar Rao shall not take any major policy decisions. Decisions taken by him since October 23 till date shall not be implemented, it said. All decisions taken by Rao shall be placed before the apex court in a sealed cover. The court sought a response from the CBI, the CVC and the Centre on Verma’s plea challenging the government’s decision to divest him of his duties. A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi posted the next date of hearing on November 12. (PTI)]]>