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By-election is fight between BJP and anti-democracy forces: Smriti Irani

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Palghar (Maha), May 25 (PTI) Union Minister Smriti Irani said today that the by-election to the Palghar Lok Sabha seat was a contest between the BJP and those who were trying to “weaken democracy”.

Speaking at a campaign rally here for the May 28 bypoll, Irani also lamented the rift between her party and its ally Shiv Sena.

“It is a fight between BJP and the powers which are contesting the election to weaken democracy,” she said.

“What is the reason for this distance (between the BJP and Sena) after staying together for so many years?” she asked.

“This is a game of power. In a game of power, relations are sacrificed,” she added.

Irani asked BJP workers not to get provoked, and speak only about development.

“I want to tell the party workers that they should not get provoked by verbal attacks during the campaign. We will fight on the strength of our culture and tradition,” she said.

The by-election to the Palghar constituency near Mumbai was necessitated due to the death of BJP MP Chintaman Wanaga.

While the BJP has fielded Rajendra Gavit, a former Congress leader, the Sena has given ticket to Chintaman Wanaga’s son Shrinivas Wanaga.

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Former JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar attacked in Bihar’s Begusarai

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Kanhaiya Kumar

Patna | Former Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) student union president Kanhaiya Kumar’s convoy was attacked in Bihar’s Begusarai on Tuesday.

According to police, “The incident took place on Monday night in Bhagwanpur police station area where Mr Kumar had made a brief stopover while returning to his home in Beehat village after addressing a public meeting.”  The police further informed that “Kumar had gone to meet a friend living on the upper storey of a building, close to which Durga Puja celebrations were on. The cavalcade of his supporters blocked a part of the street, thus hindering the movement of vehicles.”

SHO Deepak Kumar further informed, “When locals objected, the former JNUSU chief’s supporters declined to move following which both the sides started to fight, resulting in the injuries to two Puja Samiti members, even as nearly half a dozen vehicles parked on the street were vandalised.”

Speaking about the incident, Kanhaiya Kumar alleged that he is been attacked for speaking against the ruling BJP government and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Kumar blamed the Bajrang Dal and the Bhartiya Janta Party Yuva Morcha for the attack. While Kumar’s party CPI has severely condemned the attack on former JNUSU president. In an issued statement, CPI wrote,” The National Secretariat of Communist Party of India severely condemns the brutal attack on Kanhaiya Kumar at Bachwada sub-division of Begusarai district of Bihar by the goons of BJP Yuva Morcha and Bajrang Dal.”

Criticising the Narendra Modi led BJP government for the attack, CPI wrote,” It is a shame on the part of the ruling clan to carry such inhuman attacks on popular student leader like Kanhaiya Kumar.” Demanding a proper investigation in the case, the statement further added that “The CPI demands immediate arrest of the culprits and severe punishment. The attack reflects the poor law and order situation in Bihar. CPI will not be afraid of these attacks of Hindutva communal forces and will fight back.”

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MJ Akbar resigns from MoS External Affairs after #MeToo allegations

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MJ Akbar

New Delhi | Minister of State for External Affairs MJ Akbar on Wednesday resigned from his post two days after filing a defamation suit against Journalist Priya Ramani over the #MeToo allegations.

In an issued statement MJ Akbar wrote,” I have decided to seek justice in a court of law in my personal capacity. I deem it appropriate to step down from office and challenge false accusations levied against me also in personal capacity submitting his resignation.  Akbar further stated,” I have therefore tender my resignation from the office of Minister of state for external affairs.” He thanked the PM Modi and External affairs Min Sushma Swaraj for giving him an opportunity to serve the country.

MJ Akbar on 15 October filed a defamation case against Journalist Priya Ramani who accused him of sexual harassment. Former Journalist MJ Akbar was accused of sexual harassment by various female journalists in the ongoing #MeToo campaign during his tenure as Editor of various newspapers. Journalist Priya Ramani had alleged that Akbar during his tenure as an Editor of a newspaper made her feel uncomfortable and harassed her in a hotel room.

After Ramani’s allegations various female journalists including Prerna Singh Bindra, Ghazala Wahab, Shutapa Paul, Anju Bharti, Suparna Sharma, Shuma Raha, Malini Bhupta, Kanika Gahlout, Kadambari M Wade, Majlie de Puy Kamp and Ruth David spoke against Akbar.

Earlier after returning from Nigeria,  MJ Akbar termed the accusations false and baseless. Speaking to media agency ANI, the former Journalist said, “Accusations without evidence has become a viral fever among some sections.” He further added, “Whatever be the case, now that I have returned, my lawyers will look into these wild and baseless allegations in order to decide our future course of legal action.”

 

 

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Former Goa Congress MLAs join BJP after resignation

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Congress

New Delhi | Former Goa Congress MLAs  Subhash Shirodkar and Dayanand Sopte on Tuesday joined BJP after resigning from the party.


Both the Congress MLAs today joined the Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) after in the presence of Union Minister Piyush Goyal and Goa BJP leader Sripad Naik. Both the leader had earlier met BJP president Amit Shah in the morning which lead to the speculations of both the lawmakers joining BJP.  Speaking to media after meeting Amit Shah, Subhash Sirodkar said, “We are joining BJP today. We expect 2-3 more MLAs to come, not today but in the coming days.”

When asked about the recent development Goa Assembly speaker Pramod Sawant said, “I received resignation from 2 Congress MLAs Dayanand Sopte & Subhash Shirodkar. They confirmed they’re doing this willingly, without any pressure. I accepted the resignations. The process will be completed, copies will be sent to all members of House, Guv & EC.”  He further added, “Strength of the assembly now is 38. Party strength is BJP 14, Congress 14, MGP 3, Goa Forward 3, NCP 1, independent 3. We have informed EC, it is up to them as to when there should be a by-poll etc.”

The resignation of the two Congressmen proves to be a major setback for the Congress party that demanded a no-confidence motion in the Goa assembly after CM Manohar Parrikkar was admitted to AIIMS regarding his degrading health. In the 40 member Goa assembly, the numbers of the Congress party has been reduced to 14, while the coalition of BJP (16) along with Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (3), Goa Forward Party (3), NCP(1) and 1 independent government has 24 MLAs in the assembly.

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