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Goa minister slams CM for ‘reversal in stand’ on special status for Goa

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Panaji: A minister from Goa has slammed the state’s Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar for ruling out the possibility of granting special status to Goa. The Chief Minister and BJP president Amit Shah had made remarks, eliminating the possibility of ascribing a special status to Goa, in order to preserve the state’s unique identity.

Amit Shah, during his two-day visit to Goa last week, had indicated that he was not in favor of taking an immediate decision on Goa’s special status issue and that the demand would be bunched along with similar demands from other states.

Parsekar on Sunday had virtually ruled out the demand saying demanding special status was equivalent to chasing a “mirage”.

While the opposition has criticised the BJP-led governments in the state and the centre for making a u-turn on the special status promise, a Goa minister has now joined the chorus against her own chief minister.

Speaking to IANS, Forest and Environment Minister Alina Saldanha said that Parsekar’s comments describing the possibility of special status for Goa as a “mirage” were personal.

“Honourable chief minister is not as well versed with the issue as then chief minister Manohar Parrikar. He (Parrikar) knew the issue inside out,” Saldanha said.

“The chief minister should remember that he was a signatory to resolution. He was the state health minister at the time. Did he think it was a mirage then too?” asks Prajal Sakhardande, president of NGO Goa Movement for Special Status, of which Saldanha is a part.

For the last few years, the demand for special status for Goa has been doing the rounds in the political and social circles in the state, which has been facing challenges stemming from rapid in-migration, shrinking land resources and a resultant dilution of identity.

In 2014, Sakhardande had headed a delegation which met Prime Minister Narendra Modi, when the latter was campaigning for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections and submitted a memorandum citing reasons for granting Goa special status.

Saldanha has insisted that Goa’s demography could change forever if special status, which bars non-Goans from buying land in Goa, is not bestowed on the state.

“When are we going to wake up? Goa’s unique identity is in the process of being wiped out,” she said, adding that real estate lobbies in India metros who were keen on selling land and apartments on premium in Goa were stalling the process.

The opposition has already slammed the BJP volte face, with former union minister of state for law Ramakant Khalap claiming that as far as the BJP goes, “this is the end of the road as far as special status is concerned”.

Aam Aadmi Party spokesperson Oscar Rebello said that regarding special status, “the BJP leaders only choose to make vague statements about safeguarding cultural identity while ignoring the real issue that is about land”.

(With inputs from IANS)

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‘Janaraksha Yatra Kerala’ Witnesses escalating BJP-Left Confrontation

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Amit Shah, President of the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Amit Shah, President of the Bharatiya Janata Party. Wikimedia

Hurling anti-left maneuver during Janaraksha Yatra Kerala, Indian BJP National President Amit Shah launched serious allegation against the ruling CPM government for triggering political violence and imputed to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan the culpability for the mass killings of party workers in the state.

The BJP Chief traced back the origin of violence-centric politics in ”God’s Own Country” to the inception of the Communist regime. “Left always paralyses the state it rules. West Bengal and Tripura witnessed similar political vehemence under the CPM government”, elucidated the President.

Criticizing the Human Rights Activists of the nation, Amit Shah pointed out that they are very selective when it comes to what they support. “You turn your eyes away when our workers die. Why is there no march in Delhi? Violence has no color. More than 120 workers of the BJP have succumbed due to political violence so far. What was their fault? They were working for the betterment of Kerala”, complained the BJP Chief.

Acclaiming BJP’s ideology enthusiastically, Shah called upon the people to join as workers. Addressing the gathering at ‘Janaraksha Yatra Kerala’, the President added that family members of the deceased have stood by the BJP and he wouldn’t let the martyrdom of the workers go waste.

Amit Shah inaugurated the ‘Janaraksha Yatra Kerala’ at Payyannur to protest against alleged killings of party workers. The “padayatra” was led by the party’s State President Kummanam Rajashekhharan.

The National President of BJP attributed the diminishing power of the CPM to their increasing reliance on political violence. Apart from CPM, the once dominating Congress is also losing momentum thereby giving BJP the opportunity to flourish with their ideology. “More the mud of violence, more the lotus will bloom” added Shah.

The BJP Chief assured his party workers and volunteers that BJP would fight the war with CPM until emerging victorious. Shah declared, “We must all unite against the rule of the Left Government.”

Shortly after the launching of the yatra, three BJP workers adorning the National Highway 66 were ambushed by anonymous men on Monday. During his address, Shah alleged that the assailants were CPM cadres who have also destroyed BJP flags in the area.

Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath is ready to augment the saffron stand with his visit to Kerala on Wednesday. As per the report of Times Now, Adityanath will basically be in the Muslim-dominated district of Mallapuram.

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If You are Planning to Visit India, Here is a List of Things You can Do!

Here is a glimpse of things to do in India - The nation of vibrancy

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Tourists at Taj Mahal in Delhi, Pixabay

July 23, 2017:

India is a country of vibrant race, religion, colors, and heritage. The secularist nature of the country distinguishes different it from other nations. It is also denoted as a nation of ‘unity in diversity’. Visitors traveling across the globe want to travel India for its austerity and simplicity. It is aesthetic country and there is a lot to do when you visit this beautiful country.

Undermentioned is a glimpse of the vast country and a very minimal part of it.

Here is a checklist of the things you can explore while traveling to India. It’s uniqueness always compels sojourners to visit the beautiful country.

Diwali: Festivals of Light

Diwali
Diwali Festival, Wikimedia

Festivals in India are worth a watch. The traditions are so bizarre and unique that you tend to enjoy being a part of such an affair. It becomes a memorable experience for the voyagers. The entire region flickers with lights and lamps which seem as if the stars have descended to the earth. Festivals in India have its own charm and grace.

Relic importance of Delhi

India
Red Fort in Delhi. Pixabay

Delhi is a perfect spot for people wanting to see Indian history of colonial government or British era. Although India is very developed, it is the glimpse of slum areas where you get to see the hard hitting reality. The famous ‘Paranthe Wali Gali’ is the heart of old Delhi in the middle of Chandni Chowk. They serve a variety of stuffed parantha made with wheat dough and lightly fried on both sides. One of the fascinating things is that some of the places there have been around for 100 years or more.

Akshardham Temple

India
Swaminarayan Akshardham. Wikimedia

At its first sight, you will be spellbound by the impressive structure located on the outskirts of Yamuna River. The dome like structure and unworldly architecture of the temple blow away the onlooker. When the sun descends, temple lit up in its magical sense. Amidst of this exquisite creation, you will find yourself a minuscule.

Grandeur Himalaya Peaks

India
Himalayan range. Pixabay

Plan a trip to mountain valley and land up to Spiti Valley, the truest quintessence of the great Himalaya. If you want to get the mesmerizing sight of Himalayas, you must travel to Spiti Valley. It begins from Shimla and ends in Manali. Here you will be encountered with snow covered mountains surrounding you all the time. During the journey, you will also visit the old tribal group and to witness their cultures and traditions is a treat.

Goa: The Blue Land

India
Vacation in Goa. Pixabay

Enroute to Goa to have the Indian beach experience. To name a few you can visit Palolem beach of Goa, this area has everything starting with whitish clean sand, dark blue water, palm trees and the sun constantly shining. You get to see everything on the canvas like the independent traveler, couples, vacationers, sea food, beverages and the laid back atmosphere that all together makes it a perfect destination for the travelers.

Kashmir: Paradise on Earth

India
Dal Lake in Kashmir. Pixabay

Kashmir is also known as paradise on earth. You can’t miss the chance to glare the beauty of Kashmir when you are in India. The state is blessed with invincible beauty and people who visit here are amazed to see the beautiful creation of God. There is a lot to see in Kashmir, to name a few important places in Kashmir, start with Srinagar, and one of the famous attraction here is Dal Lake. Gulmarg is a place to visit during winters as the entire countryside is covered in a fresh sheet of snow.

India
Ladakh. Pixabay

Leh and Ladakh are another major attraction of Kashmir which is as magnificent as ever. One thing appealing about this place is the climate which is extremely pleasant which gives relief to the mind and nature gives relief to the eye.

Your journey should always teach you, it should always be of high relevance to you because that’s where you are spending your precious time and India is a country which has a lot of disguised beauty and bizarre traditional values. You can only become empathetic to other culture if you will try to fit into their shoes, and there is much more to this beautiful country which meets the eye of the traveler.

– by a Staff writer of Newsgram


NewsGram is a Chicago-based non-profit media organization. We depend upon support from our readers to maintain our objective reporting. Show your support by Donating to NewsGram. Donations to NewsGram are tax-exempt. 

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Destinations to Conquer with your College Friends!

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Palolem Beach, Goa, Wikimedia

May 25, 2017: College life is all about fun, excitement and making memories for a lifetime. It is the time when most students travel, seek opportunities and relish life. However, many students studying in college have a limited budget and lack the financial support to fund the trip. But the brighter side is, college students are least bothered by commitments that most young professionals have, and they can mask their appetite for wanderlust quite easily.

The good thing is, the budget is a state of mind and college students are free-spirited. They will find a way to travel even on a budget. College brings out the perfect time to travel because it helps you sort out your mind and you can meet new people on your way. It can be a life changing experience and traveling with your college gang can indeed be a happy affair!

There are pocket-friendly places where you can head out with your college group and experience the Incredible India!
BANGALORE
Bangalore is one of the most popular cities in Southern India and offers plenty of attractions for people for all ages. The city with a rich heritage, it is also known as the garden city. A country that brings together contemporary and traditional themes fused in its milieus. The architecture is mostly modern but with few historical exceptions. Bangalore has several colleges, universities and has a serious influx of young working people. It is highly popular for its vibrant nightlife and friendly neighborhoods. If you visit the city, you can search for cheap hotels in Bangalore on websites like Yatra; a one stop travel solution for all your travel needs. You can start the day however you like, but visiting Woderla Amusement Park and Cubbon Park are a fantastic way to pump energy and enthusiasm. Bangalore is famous for its parties so make sure you find yourself a pub!

Bangalore, Pixabay

MANALI
A highly popular place among people from North India. Manali is a highly-recommended place if you are fond of mountains, greenery, and breathtaking views. The city is easy to reach, and the drive to Manali will leave you panting in awe. With several adventure sports are on offer ranging from paragliding, rappelling, river rafting and skiing. Often called as the backpacking capital of India, Manali offers its visitors many hiking options and is a breath of fresh air! Make sure you visit Solang Valley, Rohtang Pass, and Jana Falls. Go with your college friends, and be a part of the adventure!

Manali, Pixabay

RISHIKESH
Rishikesh is another fun place to visit with your college friends. If you are adventurous, then this is the place to go. It is popular for camping, bonfires, river rafting, bungee jumping, rock climbing and more. Bond with your friends, and make memories of a lifetime. One can hop from one café to another and eat scrumptious western food. Since religion is an integral part of Rishikesh; one can sign for yoga or meditation classes. If you are heading out to Rishikesh, make sure you visit the Beatles Ashram, which is one of the niftiest places to hang out with your friends.

Rishikesh, Pixabay

GOA
No college trip is complete without Goa on the list. The epitome of fun, Goa is the informally known as the party capital of India. It is the place to experience a range of emotions without worrying. A truly joyous place, the laid-back culture is what attracts most college students. The beautiful and serene beaches are truly enchanting and are dotted with several shacks on its front. It offers a memorable time that will leave you wanting for more. If your group likes a more calm and soothing place, then heading to South Goa makes sense. Otherwise, if you guys are all about noise and need a happening place, then nothing beats North Goa. Make sure you visit Baga Beach,, Fort Aguada and Calangute Beach.

Goa, Pixabay

All these places are pocket-friendly if you do your research right. If you are worried about the prices of hotels, then check out the popular travel websites like Yatra, MakeMyTrip, GoIbibo and more to make your holiday a hassle free and fun affair! College students are concerned about budgets, and these websites will make sure you get the best deal!