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Battle to win Amma’s legacy: will the video leak pay off for Dinakaran camp?

News Desk



As the RK Nagar by-poll is due on Thursday, the TTV Dinakaran camp spotted the opportunity to release a video of the late J Jayalalitha, from her last days.

The death of AIADMK matriarch J Jayalalitha has been surrounded by a web of mysteries. However, the late Tamil Nadu Chief Minister continues to be an election bid, her successors can bet on.

Amma (J Jayalalitha) as she was known among the masses, left a fortune and a vast political empire to be inherited by her party workers. However, soon after her demise, the party fell aside and was split into three factions- Amma’s close aide Sasikala and TTV Dinakaran camp, O. Panneerselvam and E. Palaniswami camp. The OPS and EPS camp have mended their ways to stand up to Sasikala-Dinakaran camp.

The battle between the factions to claim the throne has intensified as the RK Nagar by-poll is due tomorrow. RK Nagar by-poll is a crucial game for all the three factions to prove their mettle. The factions are also looking at it as a base to claim Amma’s political legacy who represented the constituency.

The TTV Dinakaran faction who has been on a back foot due to Sasikala’s arrest on charges of corruption tried to make a comeback with a video of Amma from her last days. Just a day before the by-poll in Chennai it released a video of late J Jayalalitha from last year.

In the video, it is seen that Amma is lying on a hospital bed visibly very weak. She is also seen watching TV while drinking juice from the glass she is holding.

The video was released by MLA S Vetrivel who later confessed that he did so without consulting Dinakaran or Sasikala. “The video was shot after Amma was moved from the ICU by Sasikala,” Vetrivel said.

The mysteries surrounding AIADMK Supremo’s death gave birth to several conspiracy theories. Many believe that she had demised before bringing her to the hospital but was kept for several days for political motives. However, Apollo hospital had always maintained that Jayalalitha was unconscious when she was brought in. The matter which invoked qualms was taken under judicial probe.

Vetrivel said that he wanted to clear the air surrounding Amma’s death and wanted to put an end to all conspiracy theories. Earlier, Dinakaran had claimed that a video of amma watching television at the hospital is with him, which was recorded by Sasikala. He said Sasikala had warned him not to release the video because it would degrade Amma as she is seen wearing night dress in it. “She did not permit to release the video except for judicial probe,” said Dinakaran.

The newly released video has made the Jayalalitha’s death even murkier instead of clearing the air around it. It is evident that the video is an attempt to invoke sympathy for the Sasikala-Dinakaran faction. But the matter of fact is, only time will tell if this move by Dinakaran camps reaps benefit or falls flat on its face.


Madhya Pradesh: Kamal Nath hits out at Chouhan’s ‘no misuse of SC/ST Act’ remark




Kamal Nath

Bhopal | Madhya Pradesh Congress president Kamal Nath Saturday said MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan was not above the law after the latter recently claimed that the misuse of the amended SC/ST Act won’t be allowed in the state.

Chouhan Thursday had announced that a directive will be issued shortly to ensure that the amended SC/ST Act is not misused in the state.

The MP CM was replying to a query on the protests in the state against Parliament clearing the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill, 2018 in August restoring some stringent provisions of the Act. “The misuse of the (amended) SC/ST Act will not be allowed in MP. Only after a thorough probe, a case will be registered under it. To this end, a directive will be issued shortly,” Chouhan had told reporters in Balaghat.

Speaking Saturday on Chouhan’s comment, Nath said, ” “The chief minister is not above the law. I am asking him (Chouhan) if he had taken advice and permission from Prime Minister Narendra Modi ji to issue such a statement.”

“The CM has taken an oath. He has pledged that he will follow the Constitution and law of the country. He should clarify from whom he had taken the advice (before making the announcement). What is the state of the (SC/ST) Act here?” Nath questioned.

The state has seen protests over the past several days by organisations opposed to the amendments in the SC/ST Act. They have targeted senior leaders of the ruling BJP as well as the opposition Congress. A nationwide bandh on September 6 called by these organisations had evoked a good response in poll-bound MP.

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Manish Sisodia, AAP MLAs discharged in case related to 2014 protest outside Tihar Jail





New Delhi | A Delhi court on Saturday discharged Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, AAP MLAs Amanatullah and Sanjeev Jha and others in a case related to a protest held by them outside the Tihar jail in 2014.

Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Samar Vishal granted relief to the accused saying there was a delay of four years in filing the charge sheet against the accused without any valid reason.

The court took note of the submissions made by advocate Mohd Irshad, appearing for the AAP leaders, that there was no allegation that any of the accused people was absconding or hiding in the case.

The court also noted that as per the police record itself the primary investigation was completed within a few days of the incident itself.

The final report had accused 59 persons, including some Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) lawmakers and workers, of joining or continuing in unlawful assembly, knowing that it has been commanded to disperse, and disobedience to the order duly promulgated by a public servant.

The matter relates to the protest staged by them after AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal was taken into judicial custody when he refused to furnish a bail bond in a defamation case filed by BJP leader Nitin Gadkari.

A Delhi court had sent Kejriwal to two-day judicial custody in May 2014 after he refused to furnish the bail amount of Rs 10,000.

With their leader in Tihar, party members and AAP supporters gathered outside the high-security jail to protest against the arrest and clashed with the police.

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Institutions like SC, EC being ‘systematically captured’ by RSS: Rahul Gandhi




Rahul Gandhi

New Delhi |  Congress president Rahul Gandhi Saturday alleged that institutions such as the Supreme Court and the Election Commission were being “systematically captured” by the RSS and said India cannot be run on one single idea.

There is a feeling among the people that one ideology is being imposed upon them, Gandhi said at an interaction with academicians here. “(RSS chief) Mohan Bhagwat in his earlier speeches has said: ‘We are going to organise the nation’. Who is he to organise the nation? The nation will organise itself. In next couple of months, their fantasy will be smashed,” he asserted.

During the interaction with eminent academicians from across the country at the Siri Fort, Gandhi said there are two visions of India and the Congress’ vision is that India constitutes of people who live in it. The only way to understand India is talk to its people, he said.

Gandhi alleged that the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s vision of India is that of a “golden bird” which it views as a product. The product has to be monetised and utilised, and they will decide who will do this, the Congress chief said.

“What we are fighting is the attempted capture of this ‘golden bird’ by the RSS. They have understood very clearly that electoral battle for them, they can win it once, but they can’t repeatedly win it. “They have understood that. So, now what they are doing is that they are saying elections will come and elections will go, let us capture all of India’s institutions and let us capture the golden bird with a bypass surgery,” he said.

The educational institutions, the Supreme Court and the Election Commission of India, all these are “systematically being captured”, Gandhi alleged. Citing an example, he alleged, “When Mr (Narendra) Modi came to power, a person from Gujarat was chosen to head the SPG. In a short time, he left the position. He told me that he refused a list of SPG officers handpicked by the RSS, and that is why he was sent home.”

Gandhi claimed that the reason behind this attack on institutions was that there were monetary benefits for the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). “For me, it is impossible to lead India, without having a conversation with India. The idea is, I should be a reflection of what is in your heart,” he said. Gandhi told the professors that he knows that they were feeling under pressure and feeling that an ideology was being imposed on them.

“You feel that one syllabus has now suddenly become acceptable to every single institution in India and I want you to understand and realise that you are not alone when you are fighting this battle, this sense, this feeling that you are getting is not only in your heart, it is in the heart of every single Indian person, it is in the heart of the farmers, it is in the heart of the labourers, it is in the heart of small and medium business,” Gandhi said.

A country of over a billion people cannot possibly be run on one single idea and the fact that people are allowed to express is the strength of the country, Gandhi said. “Look at 3,000 years of India’s history, we are going to win, we are not going to lose,” Gandhi asserted.

Attacking the government over its education policy, Gandhi said government institutions should be given precedence over private institutions and the government should put money to strengthen them. “There has to be space for private institutions, but the guiding light, the foundation, the super structure has to be the public education system,” he said.

“The quality private institutions must look towards government institutions and say look that is an IIT that is something we aspire to, it shouldn’t be the other way round,” he said, adding that the government has to put money into the system. He also recalled that former US president Barack Obama had said the real competition for America was from the engineers, doctors and lawyers coming out of India. This was praise for the teachers of India, Gandhi said.

The Congress chief asserted that when it comes to the Indian education system, two things are non-negotiable — teachers should be able to express and the they should be given a vision for their own future. Gandhi said the Congress was commencing its work in drafting a manifesto and invited teachers to form a delegation and come forward with their demands.

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