United Nations, Sep 22: In a reply during the general debate at the ongoing, UN General Assembly Session, India slammed Pakistan for its support to terrorism by calling it “terroristan”.
“In its short history, Pakistan has become a geography synonymous with terror,” Eenam Gambhir, First Secretary in India’s Permanent Mission to the UN, said on Thursday exercising India’s right reply after Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Abbasi’s virulent attack that “the struggle” of the people in Kashmir was being “brutally suppressed by India”.
Gambhir, who stole the show last year when she verbally pummelled former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and delivered the memorable line: “The land of Taxila, one of the greatest learning centres of ancient times, is now host to the Ivy League of terrorism”, packed equally powerful punches against Abbasi this year.
Pakistan’s “contribution to the globalisation of terror is unparalleled”, she declared.”The quest for land of pure has actually produced a ‘land of pure terror’. Pakistan is now ‘Terroristan’ with a flourishing industry producing and exporting global terrorism,” Gambhir added.
Shimla, Nov 2, 2017, 1:00 IST: It’s literally a do-or-die battle for both the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief ministerial faces in the upcoming Himachal Pradesh assembly polls. Both veterans — one in his eighties and the other in his seventies — are struggling for their political survival.
One is veteran Congress leader and incumbent Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, 83, who is pushing hard to get to the helm for the seventh time. The other is the BJP’s Prem Kumar Dhumal, 73, who is making a strong bid to ensure the party’s victory with a record margin to silence his detractors within the party.
For almost two decades, both the parties in the state have fought almost every assembly and parliamentary polls under their leadership.
“This time, Virbhadra Singh is fighting on two fronts — one is to establish his son Vikramaditya Singh, who is contesting his maiden assembly election, and the second is to ensure the party’s repeat as he forced the Congress to announce him as the chief ministerial candidate despite all odds,” a political observer told IANS.
For Dhumal, it’s simply the battle for “self-survival” after facing a humiliating defeat in the 2012 assembly polls. Since then, he was almost marginalised by the BJP faction led by Union Health Minister J.P. Nadda.
After thwarting foes within, Virbhadra Singh donned his battle gear much ahead of this arch rival Dhumal, whose name was cleared by the BJP as its chief ministerial candidate just days ahead of the polling for the 68-seat assembly on November 9.
“The announcement of Dhumal as the chief ministerial candidate was part of the BJP’s strategy to boost the morale of the cadres as the party for long was divided in two camps — one led by Dhumal and the other by Nadda,” a senior state BJP leader admitted.
Interestingly, both Virbhadra Singh and Dhumal are seeking re-election from new seats and that is not going to be easy for them.
The Congress leader is in the fray from Arki in Solan district, the BJP’s pocket borough that he chose himself, while Dhumal is contesting from Sujanpur, the seat he was asked to contest from.
The Sujanpur contest seems interesting as the Congress has fielded Rajinder Rana, who knows the Dhumal family well.
Virbhadra Singh knows the assembly poll will be a vote on the performance of his five-year-old government.
“We are seeking votes on the basis of development by our government, especially in the education, health and connectivity sectors,” a confident Virbhadra Singh, who first became the Chief Minister in 1983, told IANS.
The Chief Minister, who has been in active politics for over 50 years, is a regular target of the top BJP leadership, who point to his being out on bail and facing corruption charges in the Delhi High Court during the time he was the Union Steel Minister 2009-11.
But against all odds, he alone tours across the state seeking votes for the Congress. Party leaders said the Chief Minister is single-handedly campaigning and he is conducting 15 to 20 meetings in two to three constituencies every day.
He starts his campaign at 9 a.m. and continues till late into the night. He holds closed-door meetings with party workers in the evening for their feedback.
The only saving grace for the Congress is that its Vice President, Rahul Gandhi, will tour the state on November 6, a day before the campaigning comes to an end.
Contrary to this, the BJP has fielded its entire top brass — from Prime Minister Narendra Modi to his cabinet colleagues, including Rajnath Singh, Arun Jaitley and J.P. Nadda.
Even party President Amit Shah is aggressively touring the hill state.
“The Congress has failed to handle even sensitive cases like gang-rape of a schoolgirl. Our focus on coming to power will be eliminating forest, mining, liquor and transfer mafias that are active in the state for long. This will greatly help restoring the faith of the public,” Dhumal told IANS.
Political observers say issues like development have been pushed to the background as personal attacks dominate most of the election rallies.
“Apart from mudslinging, there is no public-specific agenda with both the leaders. They are just trying to woo voters by raking up personal issues,” an observer said.
Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said Singh is the main “star” of the party campaign in the state.
“Virbhadra Singh is campaigning on the ground and the BJP is baffled at the response he is getting. We don’t have to be loud to impress the people, like the BJP is doing,” Surjewala told reporters in Shimla on Thursday.
Virbhadra Singh is targeting Dhumal by saying he has always worked with a political vendetta against him.
But a confident Dhumal believes there is a favourable wind prevailing for the BJP’s return as the present government has wasted much time in the ongoing corruption cases against Virbhadra Singh and his family rather than focusing on development.
The future of the arch rivals will be pronounced on December 18, the day the votes cast will be counted along with those in Gujarat.
The Congress won 36 of the 68 seats in Himachal Pradesh in 2012 with a 42.81 per cent vote share, while the BJP bagged 26 seats with a 38.47 per cent vote share.
(Vishal Gulati can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org) –IANS
Canning (West Bengal): BJP national General Secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya on Thursday slammed West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for meeting industrialist Mukesh Ambani in Mumbai at a time when her state is in the grip of dengue.
“You are in Mumbai to meet Mukesh Ambani. A 21-year-old youth died in Kolkata’s alleys due to lack of treatment. You don’t care for him but you care for Mukesh Ambani because he is a crorepati and he will give you funds for elections.
“Thousands of people are dying in the state from dengue. But shameless government and shameless CM is saying it’s not dengue but something else… ,” he said here.
Banerjee on Tuesday met Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani and requested him to invest in her state.
The Chief Minister had a one and half hour meeting with Ambani soon after reaching the country’s financial capital where she is scheduled to attend a business conclave on Wednesday.
Banerjee later told reporters that Ambani would attend the Bengal Global Business Summit organised by her government in January 16-17 in Kolkata.
Vijayvargiya also took potshots at the higher education system in the state.
“Calcutta University is at the 800th position among 1000 varsities. You are downgrading the level of education in the state. It’s has gone down so much that now CU is giving D.Litt to Mamata. Where one time CU had given D.Litt to Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore, now it’s Mamata. Where is Raja Bhoj, where is Gangu Teli?” he mocked.(IANS)
Chennai, November 2, 2017: Thane in Maharashtra will be the first Indian city to be assessed for potential for implementation of district cooling system, said the Indian subsidiary of Danish company Danfoss A/S.
In a statement issued here, Danfoss Industries said: “As part of the United Nations Sustainable Energy for All Initiative, six cities in India including Thane, Pune, Bhubaneswar, Rajkot, Coimbatore and Bhopal have been chosen to explore District Energy systems.”
“Thane – also part of the Central Government’s Smart Cities Mission – will be the first city to be assessed for its potential for implementation of the district energy system,” it said.
Simply put, district cooling is a system where water is chilled at a central place and is sent to various buildings via pipelines to cool indoor air using the air conditioning system there.
According to Danfoss, district cooling systems are energy efficient and would reduce total power consumption for cooling buildings.
The water is not for human consumption.
“With the Central Government’s vision to build 100 smart cities and the UN’s District Energy in Cities initiative, we are certain that the six pilot projects of District Cooling which are being launched today, will serve as an inspiration for the rest of the country,” Ravichandran Purushothaman, President, Danfoss Industries was quoted as saying in the statement.
“Danfoss has implemented both, district cooling and district heating technologies around the globe and we are now looking to showcase this expertise in India as well,” he added.(IANS)