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On Women’s Day, CM Yogi Adityanath to focus on women farmers




The Yogi Adityanath government will celebrate International Women’s Day with a special focus on women farmers.

The department of agriculture will be organising about 250 seminars with a special focus on women farmers and groups and more than 30,000 women farmers and entrepreneurs will be imparted training.

For promoting women farmers, the department of agriculture will also be holding interactive sessions with scientists and officers who will be sharing new techniques of progressive farming.

To be conducted virtually, the programme will be held on March 8 for three hours.

For imparting technical knowledge and solution to the agricultural problems, special interactive programmes will be held with women scientists and experts of universities and Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Lucknow.

Under the first module of Rabi Session 2020-21, a three-day Kisan Pathshala with a total of 5 lakh participants will be organised in 8000 gram panchayats.

In addition, five tehsildars will be awarded by the revenue department on March 8 for the disposal of grievances of women.

Along with this, tehsildars and revenue inspectors who have made maximum registries of women account holders under the Varaasat campaign will also be awarded.

The chief minister, meanwhile, has directed all government departments to organize programmes related to women empowerment on the occasion of international women’s day on March 8.

These programmes will be held under the ongoing Mission Shakti and will continue till April.

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Looking at the Tauktae threat, Remdesivir stock sent to coastal hospitals: Vijay Rupani




Looking at the severe cyclonic storm Tauktae, which is about to hit Gujarat in the evening, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani on Monday announced that the state government had procured 3 days supply of Remdesivir injections and dispatched it to the covid hospitals on the coastal areas in the state.

Amid the looming threat of the severe cyclonic storm about to hit Gujarat in a few hours from now, the state of Gujarat is also fighting the second surge of the global pandemic. CM Vijay Rupani held a high-level review meeting with all the district collectors via video conferencing at the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) in Gandhinagar on Monday for the possible landfall of the cyclonic storm.

“Extraordinary circumstances have occurred right now, where on the one hand we are fighting against the second wave of Covid-19 and on the other, we have the threat of a cyclonic storm about to hit the state. In these extreme conditions for all those who are availing treatment at covid hospitals, we have ensured an adequate supply of oxygen and power. Yesterday, we have had sent three days supply of the much sought injections Remdesivir to all the hospitals on coastal regions.

“The requirement of oxygen in the state right now is a thousand tonnes against which we have ensured availability of 1700 tonnes, looking at the next 2 days. We are planning in detail and planning in advance regarding the cyclonic threat at covid hospitals,” Rupani told reporters after the meeting.

“We have more than 1,400 hospitals in the state, all the hospitals have been instructed to have power backup in case of failures. The diesel required for the generators for 3 days have also been stored. We have facilitated power generators and alternative arrangements in 1428 covid hospitals in the state,” the CM added.

“744 teams from the health department, 160 ‘ICU on Wheels’ and 607 ambulances of the 108 services are there on the alert to tackle the crisis,” said the CM.

“All the people residing from 0 to 10 kilometres belt area on the shore lines of Saurashtra, Kutch as well as South Gujarat have been evacuated to safer places. Around 1.5 lakh people totally have been shifted. We request once again to all the people of coastal regions not to venture outside and shift to a safer place if living in temporary structures and co-operate with the administration. We are working with ‘Zero Casualty’ approach with regards to the cyclone,” added the CM

Right now there are over 35 cities in the state where the night curfew has been imposed. “Regarding the curfew imposed in the cities of the state for covid-19, we are having another review meeting in the evening where we will decide on what shall be done,” the Gujarat CM told mediapersons.

The Chief Minister also said that the central government had assured full cooperation and support to the state. “We are constantly guided by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the home minister Amit Shah regarding the looming threat of Tauktae. The Indian Air Force, the Navy, the Army have been told and instructed… We have had full support and assurance from the central government,” the CM said.

The Chief Minister also informed that there was not a single fisherman from the state who was out into the sea and each of them have been safely called back.

Cyclone Tauktae, gathering momentum and approaching the state of Gujarat, is right now around 180 kilometres away from the southernmost tip of Saurashtra in Gujarat. It is likely to hit anywhere on the coast of Saurashtra region, most probably Mahua near Bhavnagar between 8 pm and 10 pm.

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Pinarayi Vijayan cuts cake ahead of the beginning of second term



Taking full credit for leading the ruling CPI-M led LDF to a second term, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan ahead of the first meeting of the Left Democratic Front after the election results, celebrated the occasion by cutting a big cake here on Monday.

Left Democratic Front convenor A. Vijayaraghavan told the media that a 21-member cabinet will be sworn in on Thursday and including Vijayan there will be 12 cabinet ministers from the CPI-M.

In the 140-member Kerala Assembly the Left won 99 seats, while the Congress-led Opposition secured 41.

The others include four from the CPI, one each from the JD (S) and the NCP, while four single legislator parties will share two cabinet posts with each party getting a term of 2.5 years each.

Vijayan himself took the lead and after cutting the cake gave a piece to all the leaders who came for the meeting.

Among the decisions that have been agreed to is that the single party legislator parties which include the Kerala Congress (B), Nationalist Kerala Congress, Congress-S and the INL is that all of them will be given a cabinet post but they will have to share two cabinet ministers post between the four.

Antony Raju of the Nationalist Kerala Congress will get a term of 2.5 years and after that he will have to move out for present State Minister for Ports, Kadanapally Ramachandran of the Congress -S. Ahamed Devarcoil will take the first term and midway will make way for actor turned former State Minister K.B. Ganesh Kumar.

Emerging out of the LDF meeting, Raju said as things stand he will be the one to get the first term and we as a party are extremely thankful to the CM for giving us this opportunity.

Kerala Congress (Mani) party which has 5 legislators, whose leader Jose K.Mani, son of late K.M. Mani, was looking downcast as he lost the election. He said that his party had wished to get two cabinet ministers posts, but due to limitations it has not happened.

“We have been given one Minister’s post and the post of Chief Whip (which comes with cabinet status). We did ask for two ministerial posts, but there are limitations, so we settled for one,” said Mani.

Nationalist Congress Party leader T.P. Peethambaran who has two legislators will get a cabinet minister. He said their national leader Praful Patel is arriving on Tuesday and the final decision will be made then on who will be their party nominee for the minister’s post.

Likewise the national president of the Janata Dal (S) H.D. Deva Gowda will decide who of their two legislators will become a Minister.

Even though they have one legislator and are a full fledged ally of the Left, the Loktantrik Janata Dal (S) is the only one who failed to get a cabinet post.

Another unlucky legislator is five-time winner Kovoor Kunjumon. Though his faction of the RSP is not an ally, he has been a fellow traveller of the Left after coming out of the RSP faction which is presently in the Congress led Opposition. He also failed to get any post.

The CPI-M and the CPI are busy finalizing their ministers and are expected to announce the names in a day or two. Indications are barring K.K. Shailaja — the outgoing popular Health Minister, all will be new faces. All eyes are on P.A. Mohammed Riyaz on whether he will find a slot in the CPI-M list.

Riyaz, the All India president of the DYFI (the youth wing of the CPI-M), is the son-in-law of Vijayan. He married Vijayan’s daughter Veena Vijayan last year. It was the second marriage of both.

While the Speaker’s post will be taken by the CPI-M, the deputy speaker will go to the CPI.

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Mamata Banerjee starts dharna at CBI’s Kolkata office



West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has started a sit-in in CBI’s Kolkata office to protest the arrest of four of her Trinamool Congress leaders, provoking an unusual Centre-state confrontation of sorts.

Banerjee rushed to the 15th floor of the ‘Nizam Palace’ where the CBI has the office of its anti-corruption cell.

Her spokesperson, lawyer Anindyo Raut told waiting media persons: “Didi (Banerjee) will not leave this CBI office until her party colleagues are released or until she is also arrested.”

He said Mamata Banerjee told the CBI officers they have arrested the four leaders, among them two sitting and two former ministers, without the mandatory notice. “These arrests are politically motivated and illegal. Suvendu Adhikari and Mukul Roy have been let off though they faced the same charges,” Raut quoted Mamata Banerjee as saying.

Central forces guarding the CBI office were not letting media persons inside the office — so speaking to CM Banerjee was not possible.

But she sent out Raut to let journalists “know her viewpoint”.

The CBI on Monday launched parallel raids and detained TMC ministers Firhad Hakim and Subrata Mukherjee and MLA Madan Mitra in its probe in the Narada sting case. Within hours, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee reached the CBI office.

Along with the TMC leaders, former Kolkata Mayor Sovan Chatterjee was also picked up and later arrested by the CBI in the same case.

The TMC leaders were taken to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) office in the Narada sting operation case. A few days ago, Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar had given permission to the CBI for prosecution of these TMC leaders.

Dhankhar had threatened the Trinamool Congress and said he should not be forced to use his powers.

Trinamool MP and lawyer Kalyan Banerjee told IANS the party leaders had “always cooperated with the CBI in these cases.”

“Now the CBI says they have arrested the four because they are submitting the charge sheet against them. If they are submitting charge sheet, that means the investigation is over. So why they need the leaders in custody and where is the mandatory notice of arrest! This is downright illegal and politically motivated, we will move the court and we have faith in it,” Banerjee told IANS.

Analysts blamed the Modi-Shah government at the Centre for provoking this confrontation.

“Modi and Shah have failed to stomach the party’s humiliating defeat in West Bengal. They are not only trying to take revenge but also divert national attention from their failure to handle Covid by provoking this confrontation. Who knows what they plan if this leads to violence,” said Sukhoranjan Dasgupta, veteran political commentator and writer of several books on West Bengal.

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