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BJP high command mulls final list in K’taka, but it’s a tough call

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Bengaluru, July 24. As the stage is being set for a possible change of guard in Karnataka, the BJP high command is yet to finalise the successor of chief minister B.S. Yediyurappa. However, the high command is mulling over three candidates from the final list prepared in consultation with the RSS unit of Karnataka Pranth (region).

The final list included the names of Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs and Coal Pralhad Joshi, National General Secretary C.T. Ravi, MLA and former union minister Basavanagouda Patil Yatnal, the Speaker of Legislative Assembly Vishveshwara Hegde Kageri, Minister for Mining Murugesh Nirani and MLA Aravind Bellad, sources said. The name of National Organising Secretary B.L. Santhosh is also doing the rounds, they added.

The high command is thinking of various possibilities in Karnataka as it is being hailed as the gateway to South India. This include caste, region, loyalty to Hindutva principles, ability to take the party out from the shadow of Yediyurappa, etc.

The party is also focusing on winning the next assembly elections scheduled to be held in 2023. The strategy is said to be to install a candidate in the form of a chief minister, who could cut through caste politics and bring all castes under the Hindutva umbrella.

Union Minister Pralhad Joshi has been a party president in Karnataka and is credited to enrol as many as 1 crore members for BJP in the state. His participation in ‘Save Kashmir movement’ and ‘Flag hoisting movement in Edgah Maidan of Hubli’ is an added advantage. The caste factor, however, seems to put him on the negative side.

The party is also keen on C.T. Ravi, a former minister, who was snubbed by Yediyurappa and is now elevated to the higher ranks by the party. If the high command decides to give leadership to a candidate from other than the Lingayat community, he stands a better chance, say party insiders.

Basavanagouda Patil Yatnal, known for his fiery speeches, is a Lingayat from north Karnataka. The party thinks he could be the person to sideline Yediyurappa by taking independent pro-party decisions. However, the party will have to take a chance with his temperament, sources say.

Vishveshwara Hegde Kageri, a senior leader is among the most loyal party men in the state. His clean image might help him to get the CM’s post.

Though the name of Murugesh Nirani, a Lingayat is also doing the rounds, the high command is said to be considering corruption charges and court cases against him before taking a call.

The names of BJP Lingayat MLA Aravind Bellad, Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai, National Organising Secretary B.L. Santhosh are also being considered for the post, as per the party sources. However, it is said that Santhosh, considered as the bete-noire of Yediyurappa in state political circles, is said to be vouching for candidates who carry aggressive Hindutva in the state.

However, the party is also expected to spring a surprise by announcing a new face as the BJP top leadership has experimented in other states.

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Call me “Dada”, not “Sir”, Tripura CM Biplab Kumar Deb to employees

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Agartala: In what appears to be a step to boost the morale of the government employees, Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb on Sunday asked the government employees to call him “Dada” instead of “Sir”. “Call me Dada, not sir. It enhances the warmth of the relationship”, Deb told a gathering of government employees.

Deb exhorted the government employees of the state especially ASHA and Anganwadi workers of the state asking them not to dishearten as the state government was eager to improve their pay structure.

“I salute the ASHA and Anganwadi workers of my state. The level of dedication that my sisters have shown during the pandemic period deserved applause. I know, they want to hear good news from me and I am assuring you all that this government will not disappoint anyone”, Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb told a gathering of government employees at Badharghat sports school field organized by Vivekananda Vicha Manch (VVM).

VVM has emerged as a big platform of government employees, of late, and Sunday’s public rally was its first big gathering to thank the Chief Minister for the series of steps his government took for the welfare of the employees.

“I know what challenges you people are facing. Nothing is hidden in front of me. I am assuring you all everything will be taken care of in the due course of time”, he added.  Lauding the efforts of government employees Deb said, without them no government office can function.

“Due to the efforts of government employees, people can access the benefits of the state sponsored welfare schemes. But, for a prolonged period the employees did not get their right to do something freely. They were trapped in the clutches of unions. In the previous regime, Left sponsored unions used to enjoy supreme power which had reduced the whole work culture of the state to tatters. In 2018, you people showed courage and voted BJP to power”, said Deb.

“Despite fund constraints, the state government is positively working on the issues of DA and other factors pertaining to the interest of the government employees. Our government has already addressed a number of issues related to financial benefits. The ad-hoc promotion, increment for Group D, Group C employees, regularization of SSA teachers, seventh pay scale, UGC scale for professors, special benefit for LTC are to name a few. All these indicate what we want to do and we shall do what we promise”, the Chief Minister said.

The Chief Minister also asked the officials not to call him “sir” suggesting them to refer to him as “Dada” as it makes the relationship stronger and cherished. The Chief Minister also distributed clothes among children of Badharghat sports school during the programme. State BJP President Manik Saha, Minister Ram Prasad Paul, Minister Sushanta Chowdhury, MLA Mimi Majumder, state BJP Vice President and president of Vivekananda Vichar Manch Rajib Bhattacharjee also spoke on the occasion.

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MoS home’s son Ashish Mishra sent to judicial custody for 14 days

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Lakhimpur: Son of Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra, Ashish Mishra, was produced before a court here late on the night of October 9, 2021, which sent him to 14-day judicial custody in connection with the October 3 Lakhimpur violence.

After around 12 hours of questioning in connection with the violence in which eight persons including four farmers were killed, a medical team examined Ashish Mishra in the crime branch office, after which he was taken for production before a judicial magistrate, who sent him to custody, senior prosecution officer SP Yadav.

He said an application for police remand of Ashish Mishra was submitted to the judicial magistrate who fixed it for hearing at 11 AM on October 11, 2021. Ashish Mishra was named in an FIR following allegations that he was in one of the vehicles that mowed down four farmers protesting over UP Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya’s visit last Sunday.

Farmer leaders and opposition parties had been demanding Mishra’s arrest but the minister and his son had denied the allegations.
Two BJP workers and their driver were allegedly lynched by angry farmers in the incident. Local journalist Raman Kashyap also died in the violence, which has triggered a political storm and put the BJP government on the back foot in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh.

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Mayawati questions the Congress on the killing of Dalit in Rajasthan

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Lucknow: Selective outrage of the Congress is always criticised and Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati on October 10, 2021 took on the Congress and termed as “condemnable” the incidence of a Dalit person being beaten to death in Rajasthan’s Hanumangarh. The former chief minister of Uttar Pradesh questioned the silence of the Congress.

A Dalit man was allegedly beaten to death on October 7, 2021 by a group of men in Hanumangarh over his love affair, the Rajasthan police said. Three people have been detained in connection with the case on Saturday. There are several such cases on which the Congress keep blind eye.

Mayawati said: “Will the Chief Ministers of Chhattisgarh and Punjab go there and give Rs 50 lakh to the victim’s family? The BSP demands an answer, otherwise it should stop shedding crocodile tears in the name of the Dalits.”

On the Lakhimpur Kheri violence, she tweeted, “The cropping up of the name of the son of the Union minister in the Lakhimpur violence raises questions on the working style of the BJP government.” The BJP should sack the minister as only then will there be any hope of justice for the aggrieved farmers, she added.
Mayawati also said terrorists are killing innocent people almost everyday in Jammu and Kashmir, which is very sad and shameful. The BSP demands that the Centre should take some strong steps in this regard.

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