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BJP’s ally RLSP wants its chief Upendra Kushwaha to be Bihar’s CM nominee

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image courtesy- www.indiatvnews.com
 (Photo: IANS)
(Photo: IANS)

Patna: BJP ally Rashtriya Lok Samta Party (RLSP) on Monday said that its party chief and Union Minister Upendra Kushwaha should be declared the alliance’s chief ministerial candidate for the upcoming Bihar polls.

Arun Kumar, the state president of the RLSP, said that Kushwaha is the most capable and deserving candidate for the post.

“The people of Bihar want to see Kushwaha as the next Chief Minister. Taking this view, the BJP-led NDA should project Kushwaha as the chief minister candidate,” he said.

Kumar is the MP from the Jehanabad constituency and is considered close to Kushwaha.

He said Kushwaha is the best face against Nitish Kumar, who was declared the chief ministerial nominee of the Janata Dal-United, Rashtriya Janata Dal and Congress combine for the forthcoming polls.

Another BJP ally, Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan’s Janshakti Party announced last week that Paswan will not be the NDA’s chief ministerial candidate.

Chirag Paswan, chairman of the party’s parliamentary board, said no leader from the LJP will be the chief ministerial candidate.

LJP Lok Sabha member Ramchandra Paswan, Ram Vilas Paswan’s brother, had earlier demanded that the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) should declare Ram Vilas Paswan as the chief ministerial candidate.

He said former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee wanted Ram Vilas Paswan to become the Chief Minister.

Former Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi, who has already announced he would join the NDA in the state, said that he is not in the race for the top job and only a Bharatiya Janata Party leader would be the candidate.

In the caste-ridden politics of the state, there are over half-a-dozen BJP leaders from the upper castes and the backward castes who have staked their claim for being nominated as the chief ministerial candidate.

Manjhi, a Mahadalit leader, is the president of the Hindustani Awami Morcha, which is eyeing to eat into the traditional social support base of RJD’s Lalu Prasad and JD-U’s Nitish Kumar. (IANS)

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Congress, Trinamool MPs walk out from Lok Sabha over Dalit issue

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New Delhi: The chopping of limbs of two Dalit men in Abohar district of Punjab created an uproar in the Lok Sabha which led to the staged walkout of the Congress and Trinamool Congress members.

The Bharatiya Janata Party members protested when Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan asked Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia to speak after the question hour. During the question hour, the Congress members raised slogans against the Punjab government and the Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu claimed that an attempt was being made in order to libel an elected government.

He said the Congress members first abused an elected government by coming near the speaker’s podium and then sought to raise the issue in the house.

“Everyday, it is becoming a practice. Please understand the sentiments of the house,” Naidu added.

Dismissal of Shiromani Akali Dal – Bharatiya Janata Party government in Punjab was demanded by the members of congress over the abhor crime committed.

“ Going by the same logic even the Uttar Pradesh government needed to be dismissed over the Dadri lynching incident”, said Naidu.

“Matters pertaining to the states should not be raised in the house”, said speaker Sumitra Mahajan.

“Since the Modi government came to the power there were several incidents of atrocities against Dalits and women during the past 18 months. This is a national issue”, said Scindia.

As soon as Scindia referred to the crushing of a school student by a bus allegedly belonging to a company owned by an Akali leader and sought to blame the ruling party leadership in Punjab, members from the treasury benches were up on their feet.

The speaker asked Scindia to sit down, as Congress members gradually gathered near the podium.

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Rajiv Pratap Rudy urged Speaker Sumitra Mahajan to allow his cabinet colleague Harsimrat Kaur Badal, a Shiromani Akali Dal MP from Bathinda to speak.

Congress and Trinamool Congress members walked out of the house soon after Harsimrat Kaur began to speak.

Harsimrat Kaur, the minister for food processing industries, said that the Congress protested in the Lok Sabha after a court order in the National Herald case and accused it of playing politics on issues concerning the Dalits.

She accused the Congress of trying to stall the country’s progress by stalling the Goods and Services, Tax Bill.

She said Dalits formed a sizeable section of the Punjab population and the state had the lowest rate of crime against the weaker sections.

Harsimrat Kaur said an arrest has been made in the case and maintained that it was a result of a clash between two gangs.

Limbs of two men were chopped off on Saturday at a farmhouse owned by an Akali Dal leader in Punjab, as per media reports.

One of the men, Bheem Tank, died on the way to hospital after both his hands and legs were chopped off. Gurjant Singh, who lost one hand, was admitted to a hospital in Amritsar in a serious condition.

(With inputs from agencies)

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Nitish set to take oath as Bihar Chief Minister

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New Delhi: Nitish Kumar is set to swear-in as the Bihar Chief Minister on Friday in the presence of significant leaders of the Alliances and the Congress.

Post a storming victory in the Bihar election against Narendra Modi-led NDA government, the combined JD(U)-RJD-Congress, famous as the Grand Alliance or the Mahaghatbandhan, are estimated to share seats in the cabinet according to their respective performance.

Several leaders are expected to attend the oath ceremony, mostly from the non-BJP block, that might make way for possible future political alignments.

The ceremony will take place at Gandhi Maidan in Patna and will be joined by Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, HD Deve Gowda, Sharad Pawar, Farooq Abdullah and leaders in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha such as Mallikarjun Kharge and Ghulam Nabi Azad.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is also invited for the ceremony although he won’t be able to grace the occasion due to prior commitments. He has assigned deputed Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu to represent the Government at the gathering.

Two sunshade dais are prepared for the VVIPs and for those under Special Protection Group cover. On the main dais will be Nitish Kumar and the newly elected ministers. The neighbouring dais will be graced by the newly elected MLAs.

A special corridor is constructed for the women coming to attend the ceremony.

The site of the oath ceremony is being constantly supervised by the police, and security drills are taking place to practise ushering of VVIPs from Airport to the Gandhi Maidan.

The victory of the grand alliance was categorically endorsed under the expectation of Nitish leading Bihar as the Chief Minister.

Once rivals, Nitish and Lalu came together to defeat the BJP led NDA Government.This win has boosted the confidence of the party although now it will be under severe surveillance by the citizens to see whether they are worthy of the win or not.

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Arun Jaitley attributes BJP’s defeat to its loose talkers

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New Delhi: BJP leader and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday attributed the party’s resounding defeat in the Bihar assembly elections to its motormouth leaders whose remarks had “deflected from the main theme of development”.

“I did try to intervene on several occasions and correct that narrative. But… the camera has a special fondness for those who are capable of spoiling that narrative,” Jaitley told NDTV.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which had come to power at the Centre in 2014 on the development agenda, managed to win just 53 seats in Bihar despite Prime Minister Narendra Modi spearheading the election campaign in the state.

The finance minister also exuded confidence that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill would be passed in parliament. “I think GST will get through. It’s only a matter of time,” he said.

The GST bill, which was passed by the Lok Sabha, was stalled by the opposition in the Rajya Sabha where the opposition is in the majority.

Jaitley, who also holds the portfolios of corporate affairs and information and broadcasting, said the government was committed to push ahead with reforms.

(IANS)