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Amit Shah holds meeting as farmers continue protest on Delhi borders




Even as farmers continued to protest on Delhi borders, Union Home Minister Amit Shah is chairing a meeting here to deliberate on the issue with senior leaders.

The meeting that began on Monday morning at Shah’s residence, where Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar and other senior BJP leaders were also present, seems to indicate the central government’s willingness to hold unconditional talks with farmers.

The meeting, sources said, would decide on the future course of action by the Union government to persuade farmers to end their protest and resolve the contentious issues through discussions across the table.

Home Ministry sources said that the government could sent out an invite to farmers for talks any time.

The development comes a day after the farmers rejected the Centre’s offer for parleys if they shifted to north-west Delhi’s Burari ground and ended their protest.

The meeting comes just two days after the Home Minister announced that “if farmers’ unions want to hold discussions before December 3, then I want to assure you all that as soon as you shift your protest to the designated place, our government will hold talks to address your concerns the very next day”.

As the farmers’ protest entered the fifth day on Monday, some farmer leaders also confirmed the development that the government may soften its stand on their protest.

In the last five days, both farmers as well as the central government have been holding a series of meetings to decide their future actions. But they have not come forward for talks on the issue so far.

After Shah’s assurance, it was learnt, some farmer leaders were in touch with BJP leaders and also holding discussions among themselves on parleys with the central government if it gets ready for unconditional talk.

Meanwhile, the farmers’ protest was on at Delhi’s Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur borders on the Delhi-Chandigarh, Delhi-Rohtak and Delhi-Ghaziabad routes respectively. They have been allowed to rally at their current locations amid heavy police presence.

The farmers have been protesting to demand the repeal of three controversial agricultural laws enacted in September.

Farmers mainly from Punjab, spearheaded by 31 farmers’ unions, had announced their intention to hold protest in Delhi on November 26 and 27. However, police tried to stop then in Haryana as they rode towards Delhi but they moved ahead and reached Singhu and Tikri borders, where they have been rallying.


TV actress Kamya Panjabi joins Congress in Mumbai





 The Congress got a fresh dose of glamour with well-known television actress Kamya Panjabi joining the party here on Wednesday.

Mumbai Congress President Bhai Jagtap and other leaders like Charan Singh Sapra welcomed Panjabi to the party fold.

Shooting to popularity with her appearance in the reality show “Bigg Boss-7” (2013), Panjabi has been working in the entertainment industry for over two decades and had expressed a desire to join politics and serve the masses.

Congress activist Niraj Bhatia and other leaders shared pictures of her joining the party on the social media.

Kamya, 42, has worked in several teleserials including “Banoo Main Teri Dulhann”, “Maryada: Lekin Kab Tak”, “Shakti – Astitva Ke Ehsaas Ki”, “Rethi”, Astitva… Ek Prem Kahani”, “Piya Ka Ghar”, and “Kyun Hota Hai Pyaar”.

Besides, she has acted in Bollywood films like “Na Tum Jaano Na Hum”, “Yaadein”, “Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani”, “Koi.. Mil Gaya”, and music videos like “Mehndi Mehndi” and a play “Pajama Party”

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Amarinder to meet Shah on farmers’ stir




 Former Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh will lead a non-political delegation of agricultural experts to meet the Union Home Minister to discuss possible solutions to the ongoing farmers’ agitation on Thursday.

Disclosing this here on Wednesday, Amarinder Singh, who announced to float a new political party with seat sharing with parties, including the BJP, said he had been discussing various options with Home Minister Amit Shah, whom he will be meeting in Delhi again on Thursday, and others.

“I think I can help in finding a solution as I have been the Chief Minister of Punjab and am also an agriculturist,” Amarinder Singh told a press conference.

While there could be no pre-decided formula for resolution of the farmers’ stir, something will emerge during the talks as both sides — the Central government and farmers — want a resolution to the crisis triggered by the farm laws, he said.

Making it clear that he had not met any farmer leaders, the former Chief Minister said he had deliberately not interfered in the matter as the farmers did not want politicians involved.

The farmer leaders had four inconclusive meetings with the Centre but back channel talks have been going on, he added.

Amarinder Singh had earlier said any seat arrangement he made with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would be subject to a resolution of the farmers’ issue in their interest.

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TN CM announces Rs 5L as relief to kin of victims killed in fire





Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K. Stalin announced a financial compensation of Rs five lakh to the family of all five persons killed due to an alleged fire in a firecracker shop in Kallakurichi district.

Eight others were reportedly injured in the incident, which occurred on Tuesday evening and are in a serious condition.

Stalin announced a relief of Rs one lakh to the injured persons admitted in the Kallakurichi government hospital.

The deceased victims include Khaleed (23), Shah Alam (25), Shaikh Basheer (67) and Ayyasamy (62). The police said it is yet to identify the fifth deceased victim.

Police sources told IANS that the mishap occurred due to a short circuit in an electric line and further investigation is on to ascertain the exact cause. A grocery shop was allegedly converted into a firecracker shop ahead of Diwali and was doing brisk business when the incident occurred.

The whole building was engulfed in fire and the police and fire personnel from Sankarapuram and Kallakurichi arrived at the spot to douse the fire.

Kallakurichi District Collector, P.N. Sridhar told media that the fire was doused after nearly three hours of intense efforts by the team of fire personnel and the police units that rushed to the spot.

The team cordoned off the area and started rescue operations as well as saved the grievously injured from the fire engulfed building.

State Minister, E.V. Velu reached the spot and visited the injured persons at the Kallakurichi government hospital on the same day of the incident.

The police said further investigation is on and whether the grocery shop that was converted into a firecracker shop had the mandatory license to conduct business. Whether the shop had the precautionary measures required to conduct a firecracker business, the police added.

The state government had issued warnings to the people and the firecracker manufacturers and traders to be safe during the Diwali season.

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