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BJP MP Rajeev Chandrashekar demands Padma awards for former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan

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New Delhi | Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP)  leader and Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrashekar in a letter to the Union Government has demanded to felicitate former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan who was arrested in an alleged spy scandal with the prestigious Padma Awards

In a letter to the government, Chandrashekar wrote, “I request the Government of India to 1) To ensure that the process of justice is completed by pursuing those that are responsible and holding them to account; 2) To honour Narayanan’s struggle – by a Padma Award for a similar recognition by Government of India that recognizes eventual triumph of good over evil.”

Terming Narayanan’s arrest as an attempt to “terrorize the entire ISRO community” Chandrashekar further wrote, “Regretfully, this is not just a case of a person being falsely accused in a case as stated by the Supreme Court of India, it is also about a brilliant scientist being humiliated, subjected to third degree torture at the behest of some police officers, then apathetic government and its political conspiracy.”

Chandrashekar further wrote, “Nambi Narayanan was a senior scientist at the ISRO, in-charge of the cryogenics division, making rapid progress in the field of liquid technology – a key technology in rocket propulsion that is being deployed in GSLV. He was one of the chief architects of the ‘Vikas’ engine that is at the heart of India’s rockets, the same ones that made missions like Chandrayaan and Mangalyaan possible and which will be involved in many more space voyages in future,” the letter said.

“Vikram Sarabhai, the celebrated scientist and father of Indian Space, put his trust in Narayanan and sent him to Princeton University for higher studies on rocket propulsion,” he added.

Earlier the Supreme Court on September 14 termed the arrest of former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan in an alleged Spy scandal as ‘needless and unnecessary’ and ordered a 50 lakh compensation to the scientist who was arrested in 1994 by the Kerala police.

Nambi Narayanan a pioneer in introducing the liquid fuel rocket technology in India in the early 1970s was charged with leaking vital defence secrets to two alleged Maldivian intelligence officers in 1994. The Kerala police accused that Nambi Narayanan and another scientist, D Sasikumaran had sold the secrets of ISRO in millions.

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Sharad Pawar cites Amit Shah; slams Fadnavis over Maratha quota

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But Shah, according to Sharad Pawar, said at a rally in Telangana that any quota beyond the SC-set limit will not stand in court.

 

Pune| NCP president Sharad Pawar Sunday accused Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis of giving “false” promises to the Maratha community over the issue of reservation in government jobs and education.

Pawar cited a reported statement of BJP chief Amit Shah and asked Fadnavis if he will defy his party chief in granting quota to the influential community.

The NCP leader said Shah’s had recently remarked while opposing quota to a minority community in Telangana, that the Supreme Court has set a limit of 50 per cent on the reservation.

The SC limit will be breached when the Maratha reservation is implemented in the state.

He was speaking at a congregation of NCP workers and office-bearers here.

Pawar said Fadnavis had asked people to celebrate for his government passing a law on 16 per cent reservation to the Maratha community.

But Shah, according to Pawar, said at a rally in Telangana that any quota beyond the SC-set limit will not stand in court.

“When the president of the party (BJP) says it (more than 50 per cent quota) cannot stand in court, why are you giving false promises to the people of Maharashtra?” Pawar said while hitting out at Fadnavis.

The former Union minister said people in Ayodhya are upset over the decision to take over buildings located near the disputed site in the temple town.

“People are saying they are not opposing construction of a (Ram) temple, but are complaining that in the name of the temple, there is an attempt to destroy everything,”

Pawar, talking about pre-poll unity of the opposition, said importance will have to be given to regional parties on the basis of their strength in their respective states while deciding on seat sharing.

An alliance of opposition parties is “inevitable” if the BJP is to be ousted from power, Pawar added.

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Upendra Kushwaha denies participation in NDA allies meeting

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Patna | Union Minister and Rashtriya Lok Shakti Party (RLSP) chief Upendra Kushwaha on Monday added fuel to the rumours of his breakup with the BJP led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in Bihar.

Speaking to media, Kushwaha said,”He won’t be participating in the meeting of NDA allies held before the start of the Parliament’s winter session on December 11.”

According to sources, Kushwaha who is currently unhappy with the BJP over the sharing of seats for the Lok Sabha elections in Bihar will be announcing his parties departure from the NDA along with resigning from the post of Union Minister anytime soon. In a two-day Chintan Shivir of the RLSP being held in Bihar’s Motihari the party passed a 4 page resolution expressing a strong concern over many alleged objectionable and unnecessary decisions taken by the BJP and the central government in the recent past.

Earlier in November the RLSP chief expressing his grief over seat sharing in Bihar said that the BJP’s offer of seats to his party for the 2019 general election was “not respectable”. Kushwaha had also raised speculations of switching camps when he met Sharad Yadav in November over his differences with Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

 

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Union Cabinet ‘biggest casualty’ in Modi government: Yashwant Sinha

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Kolkata | Former BJP leader Yashwant Sinha on Sunday accused the Narendra Modi government of destroying various institutions in the country, including the Union Cabinet.

Speaking at a talk show, ‘Idea of Bengal’, organised by the ruling Trinamool Congress, Sinha accused the prime minister of trying to “undermine” the Rajya Sabha during the passage of key bills. “The Modi government has destroyed various institutions of the country. But the biggest casualty is the Union Cabinet,” the former Union minister alleged.

“I am saying this because several important decisions are being taken without informing the Cabinet, be it the Rafale jet deal or demonetisation,” added Sinha, who held the finance and external affairs portfolios in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government. Parliament was the “second casualty” as the Modi government has “tried to undermine” the Rajya Sabha, during the passage of several important bills, Sinha said.  The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) does not enjoy majority in the Upper House of Parliament.

Calling demonetisation a “disaster”, Sinha said the government was trying to “dress up” the figures of economic growth to hide the “failures” of its economic policies. “First they changed the methods by which GDP is calculated. Next when it came out that the UPA government performed better that the present regime, they withdrew the data from the website. Then the government fudged figures to put up a healthy picture of the economy,” he said.

The Modi government has a “habit” of blaming the previous governments for all the wrong things that had “either happened or are happening” in the country, he added. “In 2014, the government had given specific figures of the amount of NPAs, now again in 2018 they have come up with a new figure of NPAs till 2014. The idea is to put all the blame on the previous regimes,” he said further.

Sinha stressed that West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress (TMC) chief Mamata Banerjee had “all traits” to make a good prime minister. He hoped that West Bengal and TMC would play a major role in defeating Modi in the 2019 general elections.

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