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PM Modi govt’s schemes benefited 22 crore poor families: Amit Shah

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Amit Shah

New Delhi, May 25 (PTI) BJP president Amit Shah today said the Modi government’s welfare schemes in its four years have benefitted 22 crore poor families and set an example of how a pro-people dispensation is run.

In his brief address to the media on the fourth anniversary of the BJP-led NDA government, Shah claimed that the current dispensation has taken the country’s self-pride to the highest level.

The party on the occasion also unveiled a new slogan ‘Saaf Niyat, Sahi Vikas’ (clean intentions, right development) as it launches a nation-wide drive to highlight the government’s works.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had led the BJP to its maiden majority in the Lok Sabha in 2014 general election, and his government and the party have stepped up their outreach in the run up to the next polls scheduled for 2019.

Shah said the government had come to power at a time when people had started thinking if the multi-party democracy had “failed”, but it infused a new sense of hope.

The dispensation has taken concrete and tangible steps in every sector, he said, adding that it has shown that a government can be pro-farmers and also be of help to industry, and can develop rural and urban regions together.

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman gave a presentation with ’48 months of transforming India’ being its catchline.

In the four years of the government, sanitation coverage in the country rose from 38 per cent in 2014 to 83 per cent in 2018 with over 7.25 crore toilets being built. As many as 3.6 lakh villages were declared open defecation free, she said.

Over 31.52 crore Jan Dhan bank accounts were opened and 5.22 crore families benefited from life insurance cover provided at an annual premium of Rs 330, she said.

India’s GDP in current prices went up by 31 per cent between 2013-17 while the corresponding global rise was four per cent, Sitharaman said.

She also spoke about the government’s multi-faceted focus on doubling farmers’ income and also for women’s safety, including enactment of a law providing death penalty for rape of a girl below 12 years of age.

Union ministers Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari and Sushma Swaraj were among those present on the occasion.

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BJP has killed the economy of Kashmir: Congress

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New Delhi |  Congress Party on Wednesday said that the Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) has killed the economy of Kashmir during their alliance with Mehbooba Mufti’s PDP.

Addressing the Press Conference, Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad alleged the BJP of forming an unethical alliance with PDP in 2015. “In 2014 Lok Sabha elections both parties had contested against each other,” he said.

The former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, Ghulam Nabi Azad said “BJP had won elections mainly based on ending the Kashmir issue. But what really happened is that they ended the lives of Kashmiris. Highest ceasefire violations in J&K occurred under BJP’s tenure for the last 3 years.”

The Congress leader further questioned that when will terror attacks in J&K stop? “What steps are taken by the Govt of India to stop the radicalisation of youth in J&K?” he asked.

J&K Congress president Ghulam Ahmad Mir accused the BJP-PDP alliance of betraying their own respective voters by allying with each other. Mir further said “J&K’s mainstream opposition parties offered complete support to both the parties to solve the Kashmir issue. But that was another lie by BJP & PDP.”

“For simple reason to satisfy their list for power in J&K, they have worsened the situation in Kashmir,” Congress added further.

The BJP on Tuesday withdrew its support from the Mehbooba Mufti government in the state, leading to the resignation by chief minister Mehbooba Mufti.  BJP national general secretary Ram Madhav in the Press conference said that “We have taken a decision, it is untenable for BJP to continue in alliance with PDP in Jammu and Kashmir, hence we are withdrawing.”

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Mufti Mohammed’s death was the first blow to BJP-PDP alliance in J&K: BJP

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New Delhi | BJP national general secretary and Jammu and Kashmir in charge Ram Madhav said that the death of Mehbooba’s father and then chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed in January 2016 was the first blow to the alliance.

In 11 months’ time, Mufti Sahab passed away and that was the first setback for the alliance. Mehboobaji took her time, thus giving the impression to the opposition that she was not fully on board,” Madhav said

In an interview, Madhav blamed the break-up of the party’s alliance with the PDP on the “soft approach” of the Mehbooba Mufti government over violence in the Valley.

“It was a historic alliance. We do not believe in political untouchability. I agree that it was a compulsion of the moment, but it was not an opportunistic alliance. Mufti described it as the coming together of the North and South poles… We tried our best to maintain this alliance and ensure that the government lasts its full term. I myself put in a lot of effort… but some alliances work and some don’t,” Madhav added.

While referring to the killing of veteran journalist Shujaat Bhukari, the BJP spokesperson said, “Policemen and journalists are being killed because of the soft approach. We don’t want that soft approach.” The BJP leader, however, said he didn’t agree with the contention that 2018 has been the bloodiest year in the Valley.

The BJP on Tuesday withdrew its support from the Mehbooba Mufti government in the state, leading to the resignation by chief minister Mehbooba Mufti.  BJP national general secretary Ram Madhav in the Press conference said that “We have taken a decision, it is untenable for BJP to continue in alliance with PDP in Jammu and Kashmir, hence we are withdrawing.”

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Yoga shouldn’t be used as a political tool: Top Muslim bodies

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Lucknow | Yoga should not be used as a political tool or linked to a particular community, top Muslim bodies said on Wednesday on the eve of International Day for Yoga.

The organisations also said that Yoga should be seen as form of exercise and not through the prism of religion.

“Islam lays special emphasis on physical fitness and considers things related to fitness as good. Yoga as an exercise is good, but it should not be made compulsory which may not be acceptable to people of other religions.

“The most important thing is that Yoga should not be used as a political tool. But, sadly this practice is going on,” All India Muslim Personal Law Board spokesman Sajjad Nomani told PTI here.

He also said that people of every religion and section of society should be encouraged to celebrate Yoga Day tomorrow.

“It is unfair to force upon someone any particular exercise. There should be no dispute vis-a-vis Yoga. People of every religion and section of the society should be encouraged to celebrate International Yoga Day.

“It is important that Yoga should be perceived as a rahmat (mercy) and not a ‘zahmat’ (worry),” the spokesman said.

The All India Shia Personal Law Board (AISPLB) was of the view that Yoga should not be linked to a community.

“Yoga should not be seen as something linked to a particular community. It is related to the body only. People who have the habit of seeing Yoga through the prism of religion, actually want to see humanity in a sick state of affairs,” AISPLB spokesperson Yasoob Abbas said.

He said several Islamic nations celebrate International Day for Yoga and people participate happily in events.

On Muslims generally having objections to chanting of mantras during different Yoga asanas, Abbas said, “There is no doubt that Muslims worship Allah alone. But, Islam is not that weak that it will break at the slightest instance and moreover, Yoga is not a God.”

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