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Centre is treating Kashmiris like ‘guinea pigs’: Congress

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New Delhi |Hitting out at the centre over the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir, the Congress Friday alleged that the NDA government was playing with the “crown of India” and treating the people of the state like “guinea pigs”.

Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi alleged that there had been a marked quantitative increase in ceasefire violations, deaths of security personnel, civilian killings, and terror incidents in Jammu and Kashmir since the BJP came to power at the centre and in the state.

He blamed the government for the deteriorating security situation in Jammu and Kashmir and cited the kidnapping and killing of three policemen and the reported resignations by police personnel in the state.

The Home Ministry, however, said Friday that no policeman has resigned in the state following the killing of the three police personnel by terror group Hizbul Mujahideen and described such reports as “false propaganda” by “mischievous” elements.

“There is a quantitative and qualitative change. The quantitative change is reflected in any of the four parameters — ceasefire violations, death of security personnel, civilian deaths, terror incidents,” Mr Singhvi said.

It is “shocking” that 414 jawans have died since the BJP came to power at the centre and in the state, he said.

Mr Singhvi said, “256 civilians have died. As I have said on all parametres there is 100, 200, 300 per cent increase. In the case of ceasefire violations, there is a 500 per cent increase.”

He said the UPA had brought the state and its people in the mainstream, but the NDA government converted that mainstream into “midstream”.

Mr Singhvi also accused the government of treating Jammu and Kashmir like a “laboratory experiment” and its people like “guinea pigs”.

“The government has betrayed each and every part of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh,” the Congress leader said.

He alleged that to all the incidents of violence and deteriorating security situation, there was silence on the part of the government.

Mr Singhvi alleged that mutilations have been on the rise since 2016 and also cited the recent killing of a BSF jawan who was found with his throat slit.

He also slammed the government’s decision to agree to the meeting between External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York.

However, later in the evening, India called off the meeting citing the “brutal” killing of the three policemen in Jammu and Kashmir as well as the release of postal stamps glorifying Kashmiri terrorist Burhan Wani.

Mr Singhvi slammed the government’s Pakistan policy as a ‘No Pak policy’.

“It is knee-jerk, it is episodic, it is momentary, it is transient, it depends on the mood of the moment. This government has no moral right to continue. The government is playing with crown, with the pride of India,” he said.

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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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Dhinakaran vows to ‘retrieve’ AIADMK

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Dhinakaran

Chennai | AMMK leader TTV Dhinakran on Tuesday launched a scathing attack on the AIADMK leadership, saying the ruling party has “lost its identity” and was “stuck” due to a “few selfish” people.

The ousted AIADMK leader also claimed that his Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK) would ‘retrieve’ the ruling party.

“One cannot deny the fact that the party has lost its identity and ideology and veered away from the path laid down by Amma (the late J Jayalalithaa). It is now stuck due to a few selfish persons,” he alleged without naming anyone.

He was apparently targeting AIADMK Coordinator O Panneerselavam and the Joint Coordinator K Palaniswami, with whom he is in a running feud for control of the ruling party.

Palaniswami is Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu while Panneerselvam is his deputy.

In a letter to partymen ahead of the AIADMK founding day on October 17, Dhinakaran said while the late Chief Minister M G Ramachandran had launched it, Jayalalithaa had taken it forward and made it a popular movement in the state.

But post her death in 2016, “hegemonic forces” had taken over the party, he said in the letter.

Reiterating his oft-repeated charge of the AIADMK being ‘subservient’ to the BJP-led government at the Centre, he said his AMMK would retrieve the AIADMK and restore it to its old pride.

The AIADMK has “lost its identity and become someone’s slave,” he said but did not name anyone.

Dhinakaran claimed 90 percent of AIADMK workers were supporting AMMK and that the rest were in the ruling party due to “selfish motives.”

“AMMK has been the true AIADMK. In the coming days, it will retrieve AIADMK,” he added.

His victory in the RK Nagar bypoll in December 2017 was proof of people’s sentiments as the voters elected him as Jayalalithaa’s successor, he said.

The bypoll was necessitated due to the death of Jayalalithaa in December 2016. Dhinakaran, who contested as an Independent, had defeated ruling party nominee E Madhusudhanan by a good margin.

Earlier, Paneerselvam had in February 2017 fallen out of favour with then AIADMK interim general secretary V K Sasikala and resigned as the chief minister.

Palaniswami was subsequently made his successor by Sasikala, who also appointed Dhinakaran as AIADMK deputy general secretary, before leaving for Bengaluru to serve a four-year jail term in a disproportionate assets case.

However, in August last year, the factions led by Panneerselvam and Palaniswami merged. Later, a party General Council, under the two leaders, expelled Sasikala from the party and annulled all appointments made by her, including that of Dhinakaran.

Dhinakaran has been since critical of the Palaniswami government and has repeatedly vowed to oust it.

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2 Congress MLAs likely to join BJP after resigning from the party

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Congress

New Delhi | The Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) has found a sense of relief for its government in Goa after 2 Congress MLAs held a meeting with BJP president Amit Shah.

According to reports, Congress MLAs Dayanand Sapote and Subhash Shirodkar have resigned from the Congress party and are likely to join 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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