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Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai faces ‘caste reservation’ heat




Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai is facing the challenge of ‘Lingayat Panchamasali’ agitation for reservation which is scheduled to go on for one long month.

The challenge has become a litmus test for him as the ‘Most Backward Castes Awareness Forum’ has submitted a memorandum urging him not to bring Panchamasali Lingayats in the list of the ‘Other backward Classes’ (OBC).

Adding to the woes, Panchamasali seer Jayamrutynjaya swamiji has vented out his ire on former Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa’s son B.Y. Vijayendra alleging that he had tried to misguide the whole movement.

The agitation demanding reservation started on Thursday (August 26) from Male Mahadeshwara hills in Chamarajanagar district. The one-month long agitation is named as Pratigna Panchayat. The organisers have planned to create awareness at every taluk level under the leadership of Jaya Mruthyunjaya swamiji.

The government headed by former Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa had promised to sanction reservation for the Panchamasali sub sect on the floor of the House. At the time, a 600 kilometer padayatra was undertaken from KudalaSangama to Bengaluru demanding reservation.

Jaya Mruthyunjaya swamiji has stated that Yediyurappa was misguided by his son Vijayendra on the movement. The community, which comprises the lion’s share of population among the Lingayat community supported Yediyurappa. Now, they are looking forward to a leader who can support them, he added.

Presently, Lingayats who fall into lower income groups can claim reservation under 3 B reservation quotas along with Jains, Christians and others. Some sub castes can claim under 3A category. However, if reservation is provided under 2 A category, which has 15 per cent reservation for Other Backward Classes (OBC), it would boost the prospect of getting government job opportunities for Panchamasalis.

Yediyurappa during his tenure had directed the Commission for Backward Classes to submit a report in this regard. The report, however, has not been submitted yet. Since, the Panchamasali community has begun the agitation, the ruling BJP especially Chief Minister Bommai is facing a daunting task of managing the situation..

Minister for Industries Murugesh Nirani, senior BJP leaders Aravind Bellad and Basanagouda Patil Yatnal, belong to the Panchamasali sub caste, and all were aspirants for the Chief Minister’s post but failed to make it.

Jaya Mruthyunjaya Swamiji has made an announcement that the deadline given to the government (September 15) to provide reservation is nearing and Chief Minister Bommai should initiate steps to provide reservation. “We will back that individual or party who extends support to us,” he underlined.

The Bommai government which has to face Zilla Panchayat, taluk panchayat elections very soon is facing a real challenge in dealing with the situation.


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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