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Just quitting from Cabinet not NDA, said the TDP ministers on tendering resignation

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In the wake of Chandrababu Naidu’s announcements made last night about pulling two ministers of the Centre, both Union Ministers belonging to TDP, Ashok Gajapathi Raju and YS Choudhary, have tendered their resignations. The two ministers submitted their resignation to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

On the other hand, as per some political pundits, a measure as drastic as this taken by Chandrababu Naidu only reflects his anger towards the ruling government. With an astute political step of quitting the government as he yet remains the ally works to be completely in Naidu’s interests in the state as he safely keeps an option open for an alliance in the year 2019 anyway. However, the question that still stays is that whether or not Naidu will carry on with his alliance with the BJP and how the masses are going to take his this move.

More so, after not answering Naidu’s phone calls yesterday, PM Modi today called Naidu, and reportedly tried convincing him to not to walk out of the government.

Furthermore, while the TDP decides to continue supporting the NDA, the tow MPs stated that the PM has given them an assurance that ‘justice will be done.’ However they declined on commenting on the probable BJP-YSRCP tie-up saying, “That is between those two parties, we have nothing to say on that, you can ask them: YS Choudhary,TDP MP on possibility of BJP-YSRCP alliance.”

Ashok Gajapathi Raju also said, “We (BJP and TDP) have worked together and were able to work cohesively. This was an opportunity that I partly gave up. It’s our courtesy that we call on him (Narendra Modi),”.

He further added, “We are continuing as part of NDA, but the problems are there. From being Andhra Pradesh, we have become the “residuous state of Andhra Pradesh”. There are different ways to look at it (the bifurcation issue). Our party has directed that we resign and continue being part of NDA. We hope that a solution will come.”

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‘Without food security,there is no national security’: Vice President Venkaiah Naidu

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Naidu

Pune | Vice President Venkaiah Naidu on Friday said that the prime agenda of both centre and state government should be to make agriculture sustainable and profitable.

While speaking at the concluding song of the national consultation on ‘Making Agriculture Sustainable and Profitable’ under the Swarajya to Surajya series, Venakaiah Naidu said that time has come for a sharper focus on positive bias towards farmers.

“I feel that this should be at the top on the agenda of the government, at the centre, at the states – making agriculture viable and sustainable. This is concerned with the national security. Without food security there is no national security,” said Naidu.

He further added that “One of the new challenges in the agricultural sector is the problem of plenty. We have become self-sufficient in food grains. However, this has not translated into higher income for farmers. Unless agriculture is made profitable, we cannot attract more people, especially youth, to take up farming.”

Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis and former agriculture minister Sharad Pawar among others were present on the first day of the program.

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Mamata cancels first China visit as ‘political meetings at appropriate level’ not confirmed by CPC

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Mamata Banerjee

Kolkata | West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee cancelled her first China visit on Friday at the last minute as political meetings at the “appropriate level” were not confirmed by the Chinese government

The Trinamool Congress (TMC) chief was slated to leave for China on Friday night for an eight-day visit

She was scheduled to lead a delegation to China under the exchange programme of the Government of India with the International Department of the Communist Party of China

West Bengal Finance Minister Amit Mitra said External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, who is at present out of the country, and Foreign Secretary V K Gokhale were informed about the cancellation of Banerjee’s visit

In a Facebook post, the chief minister said, “In March this year, the Union Minister of External Affairs had recommended to me to kindly consider leading a delegation to China in the coming months under the Exchange Programme of the Government of India with the International Department of the Communist Party of China.”

Noting that she had agreed to the proposal, Banerjee said, “I mentioned to her that since the interest of my country is involved, I wish to visit China sometime during last week of June, 2018.”

Pursuant to letters from the state chief secretary and the ambassador of India in China, a programme was chalked out and the visit was planned, She said

Till Thursday, everything was “going well”, the chief minister said, adding that unfortunately, “the political meetings at the appropriate level” could not be confirmed

“It has now been intimated by our Ambassador in China that the political meetings at the appropriate level under the Exchange Programme could not be confirmed. Therefore, the purpose of my visit with a delegation to China under the Exchange Programme is of no use,” she said.

According to sources in Beijing, the CPC did not facilitate her meeting with any senior leader other than Song Tao, Minister of the International Department of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC)

The international department is in-charge of conducting relations with various political parties of the world, including India, and hosts and interacts with visiting political leaders

But considering her stature in Indian politics, India had proposed a meeting with a member of the powerful seven-member Politburo Standing Committee, the highest body of the party which governs the country, the sources told news agency PTI

The committee is headed by Chinese President Xi Jinping, who is also the General Secretary of the CPC

Her visit has been cancelled due to the failure of the CPC officials to understand and appreciate her stature both as chief minister and as head of the political party, the Trinamool Congress and the importance of her visit, the sources said

There was no immediate comment from the CPC on the cancellation of Banerjee’s visit

When Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan visited China in 2016, he had met Zhao Leji, a member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and head of the CPC Central Committee Organisation Department, besides Song

Sources said Banerjee’s visit was expected to be rescheduled as both the countries have been making efforts to improve the relations following the informal summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi providing a new direction to the bilateral ties

Banerjee said although the Indian ambassador in China tried his best to make her visit a success, the non-confirmation of the political meetings “at the last moment”, had “unfortunately compelled us to cancel the visit”

“However, I wish the continuation of the friendship of India and China in the days to come and it should strengthen further in the interest of both the countries,” she added

Banerjee was scheduled to address a high-profile meeting of CEOs of Chinese companies in Shanghai as part of efforts to scout for Chinese investment in the eastern state of West Bengal.

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J&K Governor adviser Vijay Kumar reviews security situation in Kashmir

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Retired IPS officer K Vijay Kumar, who assumed office as an adviser to Jammu and Kashmir Governor N N Vohra, today reviewed the security situation in the valley, an official spokesman said.

Immediately after assuming office as an adviser to the governor, Kumar reviewed the security situation with the top police brass during a meeting here.

The meeting was attended by Director General of Police S P Vaid, the director general of prisons, special DG and other officers.

During the meeting, detailed discussion was held on the prevailing security situation in Kashmir, the spokesman said.

Kumar stressed on close synergy between security agencies for maintaining peace.

Regarding the security in jails, he asked for better security management of prisons viz-a-viz modern gadgetry and infrastructure, the spokesman said.

He was till recently holding the post of senior security adviser to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs.

Kumar, a 1975 batch IPS officer of Tamil Nadu cadre, had earlier served in the Kashmir valley as inspector general of the Border Security Force (BSF) in 1998-2001 when the border guarding force was actively involved in the counter-militancy operations.

He also served as the director general of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) between 2010 and 2012, before he was appointed as a senior security advisor in MHA.

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