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Andhra Pradesh Special Status demand: Civil groups call for state-wide Bandh

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Andhra Pradesh Bandh

While the ruling TDP has opposed the call for Andhra Pradesh bandh, several opposition parties including YSRCP, Congress and Left parties have supported the total shutdown call.

 

Days after the Rail Roko protest staged by the YSR Congress Party demanding special status category for Andhra Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh bandh has been called by the Andhra Pradesh Pratyeka Hoda Saadhana Samiti. On Monday morning, several groups took it to streets to assert their demand for special category status for the state. People are sitting in protest in Vijayawada, Anantapur, West Godavari and other parts of the state.

While the ruling Telugu Desam Party has opposed the call for Andhra Pradesh bandh, several opposition parties including YSRCP, Congress and Left parties have supported the total shutdown call. The YSRCP alleged that the government has been issuing notices to those supporting the bandh, saying cases would be booked against them.

The YSRCP has also intensified its protest against the centre. During Budget session, the YSRCP MPs staged a protest outside the parliament and had moved a no-confidence motion against the Centre. By the end of the session, the five MPs also submitted their resignation and staged a hunger strike in Andhra Bhavan.

On the other hand, Chandrababu Naidu will go on a day-long hunger strike on April 20 demanding the special category status. The BJP leadership slammed Naidu for his decision. BJP State president Kambhampati Haribabu asked why the Chief Minister was going on hunger strike when he himself took exception to the fast observed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on April 12.

In light of the Andhra Pradesh bandh, Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation buses will operate only till Andhra Pradesh state border today. The Telugu Desam Party opposing the Bandh said that such form of protest stalls development work.

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Everyone who lives in India is Hindu by identity, nationality, claims RSS chief

Anil Rajpurohit

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New Delhi | Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat on Wednesday while speaking on the third day of the RSS conclave ‘ Bhavishya ka Bharat – an RSS perspective’ sparked controversy.

Addressing the media Bhagwat said,”All those who live in India are Hindu. They hesitate to say that. All people are our own. Our tradition is unity.” Responding to the question of increasing mob lynching cases, the RSS chief said, “Gau raksha (cow protection) should not be confused with vigilantism or mob violence”.

Bhagwat during the three-day conclave presented his views on various issues. He said,”RSS is not against inter-caste marriage and it really is a question of compatibility between a man and woman. He further added that if there is was a “census” on inter-caste marriages, he remarked, the maximum cases would be from the Sangh.

Earlier Bhagwat had said, “Hindutva” means inclusivity and accepting Muslims is a part of it. “Hindu Rashtra doesn’t mean there’s no place for Muslims. If we don’t accept Muslims, it’s not Hindutva. Hindutva is Indianness and inclusivity.”

Speaking on allegation on RSS role in the decision making of the Union Government Mohan Bhagwat said, “Often people make this speculation that a call from Nagpur (RSS headquarters) must be behind a particular decision (of the government). This is all baseless. All those working (in the government) are seniors and they are far more experienced in politics than us.”

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Congress didn’t support Triple Talaq bill under pressure of Muslim vote bank, alleges BJP

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Triple Talaq

New Delhi | The Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) on Wednesday criticised the Congress party for its double standards view on the Triple Talaq bill.

Addressing a press conference after the Union cabinet passed the ordinance on the Triple Talaq bill making it a criminal act, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad alleged that the barbaric Triple Talaq curse was not allowed to be ended because of ambiguity and the vacillations of the Congress party.

Criticising the opposition parties especially UPA chairman Sonia Gandhi of playing vote bank politics Prasad said, “It is my serious charge with full sense of responsibility, that a distinguished woman leader is the ultimate leader of the Congress party, yet such a barbaric inhuman Triple Talaq curse was not allowed to be ended by a parliamentary law because of ambiguity and the vacillations of the Congress party.”

Prasad further alleged that “We made all efforts to take the Congress party on board. On the instructions of the Prime minister, Ananth Kumar and I met the Congress leaders, but under the pressure of their vote bank the Congress party did not support us.”

According to the passed ordinance, instant ‘triple talaq’ has been made a criminal offence and a three-year jail term is proposed for a Muslim man who divorces his wife through this practice. The bill covers all kind of instant triple talaq illegal whether delivered orally through a telephone or a mobile call, or in writing or through an electronic medium like Whatsapp or SMS.

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JD (U) to contest J&K civic, panchayat elections

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panchayat

Jammu | The Jammu and Kashmir unit of the Janata Dal (United) on Wednesday announced its participation in the upcoming municipal and panchayat polls but demanded adequate security for its candidates.

“We are going to fight the urban local body and panchayat polls, and our candidates in north Kashmir’s Kupwara and Baramulla districts have already started getting forms from the authorities concerned,” JD(U) state president G M Shaheen told reporters here. “We appeal to Governor Satya Pal Malik to ensure adequate security to the candidates including our party activists and ensure free-and-fair polls.”

Shaheen accused the National Conference and Peoples Democratic Party of playing politics by boycotting the elections. “Otherwise, why did the two parties took part in the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council polls?” he asked.

“They know the people are fed up with them and took the escape route… If they believe in what they say, then they should boycott the upcoming Lok Sabha and Assembly polls as well. But I know they will not do that and will be in the forefront during those elections.”

Referring to his rallies in the Jammu region, the JD(U) leader said people were very happy that the polls were taking place after a very long time, but were “angry” at the PDP and BJP for their alleged failure on all fronts during their coalition rule.

“We see an opportunity to fill the gap created by the previous PDP-BJP government due to its misrule,” he said, asserting that his party had made great gains across the state.

Continuing his tirade against the BJP, he alleged that the saffron party had failed to address the aspirations of the people of Jammu despite being in power in the state and Centre.

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