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Tuesday,18-January-2022

National News

BJP confident of winning all 11 seats in Uttar Pradesh bypoll

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Uttar-Pradesh-Chief-Minister-Yogi-Adityanath

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Uttar Pradesh is confident of winning all the 11 Assembly seats in the bypoll to be held on October 21.

“The mood among the people is upbeat, the performance of the State and Central government is good and the Opposition has no issues against us. We are confident of our victory in the by-elections,” said Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Maurya.

The BJP held nine out of the eleven seats that are going to the polls while the Samajwadi Party (SP) had the Rampur seat and the Bahujan Samajwadi Party (BSP) held the Jalalpur seat.

The BJP is contesting ten seats out of the eleven seats while one seat (Pratapgarh) has been given to Apna Dal.

“Things have changed in favour of the BJP now. The abrogation of Article 370 and triple talaq have propelled the mood in favour of the BJP. We are going to win by a greater margin than in 2017,” Maurya said.

However, the BJP is perturbed over the results of the by-elections in Hamirpur declared last month. The BJP vote share fell from 44.49 per cent in 2017 to 38.55 per cent in 2019 and the BJP candidate Yuvraj Singh could win the elections with a margin of 17,771 votes.

The SP, on the other hand registered an increase of about 4 per cent votes in the by-election.

The BJP is now channelising all its energy into the by-elections.

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath will start addressing election meetings in all the constituencies where by-elections are being held from October 15. State BJP president Swatantra Dev Singh and organising secretary Sunil Bansal have already toured the constituencies.

Party leaders are working at the booth level to ensure proper mobilisation of voters on the polling day. The party is also holding caste conferences with special focus on farmers, Other Backward Classes (OBCs) and Dalits.

Ministers, who are in charge of these constituencies, are also camping there to monitor the progress of the campaign.

“Our party cadres are also fanning out to create awareness on abrogation of Article 370 and triple talaq. This is primarily to dispel the misconceptions that the Opposition is trying to create on these issues,” said a party functionary.

The Opposition parties, however, are in a state of disarray and pose no threat to the BJP in these by-elections.

A BJP leader said, “The SP will try to play the victim card in Rampur where SP MP Azam Khan’s wife is their candidate, but our campaign will also focus on the ‘reign of terror’ that was unleashed in Rampur during the SP regime.”

The BSP, on the other hand, is unsure whether Mayawati will campaign in the by-elections or not. Candidates are banking solely on the Dalit vote base for the by-elections.

The Congress, however, plans to work seriously on the by-elections and party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra is expected to camp in Lucknow for two days from October 14 to work out a strategy.

However, the party is facing growing resentment over the new organisational set up and the candidates are not likely to get much support from the cadres.

A demoralised and disintegrated Opposition will obviously work to the advantage of the BJP.

Meanwhile, the seats where by-elections are being held include Pratapgarh, Lucknow Cantt, Rampur, Gangoh, Govindpur, Jalalpur, Zaidpur, Iglas, Manikpur, Ghosi and Balha.

The by-election in Tundla has been postponed since the matter is in court while the by-poll in Hamirpur has already been held.

National News

BJP takes dig at AAP for procuring 1 electric bus in 7 yrs

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As Delhi gets its first electric bus, BJP took a dig at the Aam Aadmi Party-led state government for procuring just a single bus during their last seven years of rule.

“It took 7 years to buy 1 electric bus by AAP government which resulted in Delhi breathing bad air,” BJP MP Manoj Tiwari said on Tuesday.

Tiwari blamed the Kejriwal-led government of being “visionless” and “department less”. He urged the people of Delhi to look after their well-being as air pollution during winters is dangerous.

Terming it a “beginning of a new-era in the transport sector of Delhi”, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had flagged off the first electric bus on Monday.

“We aim to bring in 2,000 electric buses in the coming years. Since 2011, not a single new bus had been procured by the DTC; this is the first new bus being added to its fleet in a decade. The public should also contribute to this war against pollution by switching their vehicles to electric,” he said as he flagged off the bus from the Indraprastha depot.

While launching the environment-friendly bus, Transport Minister Shri Kailash Gahlot said that along with promoting environment-friendly transport, the government was committed to providing a world class and smooth transport service to the people of Delhi.

These state-of-the-art buses are 100 per cent electric with zero tailpipe emissions. They are among the 300 electric buses that will be inducted under DTC. The total fleet of 300 buses will run from Mundela Kalan (100 buses), Rajghat (50) and Rohini Sector 37 (150 buses).

The electric air conditioned buses have kneeling ramps for differently abled passengers, and special pink seats for women passengers. They are also equipped with CCTV cameras, connected to a two-way Central Command and Control Centre (CCC) at Kashmere Gate, 10 panic buttons in each bus and a hooter.

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National News

Nitish Kumar govt likely to relax liquor prohibition law

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Nitish-Kumar

Facing criticism over poor implementation of the liquor ban, the Nitish Kumar government in Bihar is likely to give some relaxation to the violators.

According to a top official of the JDU, the state government is ready to review this issue and a proposal is likely to be put on table in the upcoming budget session of the Bihar Vidhan Sabha.

As per the proposal, the violators who are caught in drunken state can be let off after paying penalty on the spot. Though, it is not applicable on repeat offenders. A person repeatedly violating the norms of liquor prohibition law would be liable to face jail term.

Such a relaxation would allow liquor consumption at home and would also promote the home delivery concept, which is already popular among habitual drinkers in Bihar.

The JDU official further said that the vehicle used for smuggling of liquor could be released after paying a fine.

He said that the Chief Minister is under huge political pressure after a series of spurious liquor tragedies in different districts in the last four months that have taken the lives of more than 80 persons and many others have lost their eyesight.

Reacting to it, Danish Rizwan, the chief spokesperson of HAM said: “Chief minister Nitish Kumar, instead of bringing amendment or review of liquor prohibition law, should do a survey on this issue. If common people of the state are satisfied with the amendment or review, our party will not go against it. If people of Bihar are in favour of withdrawal of the liquor ban, we also respect that decision.”

The liquor tragedies occurred in Muzaffarpur, Gopalganj, Bettiah, Samastipur, Vaishali, Nawada and now CM’s district Nalanda.

This issue is severely affecting Nitish Kumar government especially after its alliance partners BJP and HAM are extremely vocal. They want a review of the liquor prohibition law. The liquor ban was enforced in Bihar in April 2016.

The government also came under criticism by the Patna High Court recently. The court said a large number of liquor related cases are pending which has led to a huge burden on the judicial system. Keeping this in view, the Nitish Kumar government should establish more courts in all 38 districts for speedy trials of liquor related cases.

Though, this would not be the first case of amendment in liquor prohibition act. In 2018, the state government made a provision to grant bail to normal offenders at the police station level. The offenders have to pay Rs 50,000 as fine. In case of offenders unable to give a penalty, they would be liable to face jail term. Under the liquor prohibition law, the maximum jail term is 10 years.

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Maharashtra

Devendra Fadnavis demands action over Nana Patole remarks on Modi

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The BJP will not keep quiet over Maharashtra Congress president Nana Patole’s alleged controversial remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Leader of Opposition in the Maharashtra Assembly and senior BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis said on Tuesday.

Speaking to reporters in Panaji, Fadnavis also slammed the Maharashtra government for not filing an FIR over Patole’s comments, a video of which had gone viral on Monday.

“Someone called the Maharashtra CM’s wife Rabri devi and an FIR was filed. And here a person who calls himself a leader, threatens to kill the PM and there is no FIR (First Information Report) against him in Maharashtra. This is wrong. We will not keep quiet,” Fadnavis said.

In the video in Bhandara district in Maharashtra, Patole is allegedly heard saying he could beat up and badmouth Modi.

Patole later clarified that he was not referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but a local goon with a similar surname.

Fadnavis, however, hinted at Congress conspiracy against the Prime Minister.

“I feel it is a Congress policy. In Punjab, the security of the PM is compromised and in Maharashtra the president says we will beat the PM. Through this, one can know what he (Patole) really feels about the PM. I feel it is Congress policy and we demand that an FIR and legal action should be taken against Nana Patole because he has spoken about beating the Prime Minister,” Fadnavis said.

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