The Indian Express | 2 weeks ago | 22-11-2022 | 10:45 pm
Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Tuesday called Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) “Siberian birds” that “migrate when election comes and return when its over” and termed Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra a “Modi Virodhiyon Jodo Yatra”. Speaking at a political rally in Sabarkantha’s Bayad, Fadnavis said, “Do you know all these people of AAP are like Siberian birds? In Siberia, during extreme cold weather, the birds when they do not find anyting to eat, they fly to Mumbai and Surat, stay there for 2-3 months and when then cold weather ends fly back from Surat and Mumbai. AAP are like these Siberian birds that migrate when election comes and return when its over”.He further called them “liars” and as someone who would “dance in anyone”s marriage”. “Also, as you know there are some people in each village who start dancing in anybody’s marriage the moment band starts playing. Such are these people. Their habit is lying. After lying throughout the day they sit at night to evaluate their lies of the day and plan lies for the next day,” the BJP leader added.Accusing AAP to have deteriorated the law and order situation in Punjab, he said, “In Punjab, people are innocent, they believed in their revdi promises and elected them. But they are regretting it now. People are murdered in broad daylight, looted, such a bad law and order system that Punjab never witnessed.”Seeking support and vote for BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Fadnavis said that when the “son of Gujarat is taking care of the entire country then the entire Gujarat should back him” as today “national and world forces are dreaming on how to defeat Modi”. “Yuvraj came here, you know who is Yuvraj, I don’t call him Pappu but Yuvraj and what he speake I don’t understand that. At a time when there is election in Gujarat he is carrying out Bharat Jodo Yatra, he is roaming somehwere else. He comes for a day because he knows there is no point in coming to Gujarat. The seat where he addresses that seat is lost. The Bharat Jodo Yatra what Yuvraj ji started is not Bharat Jodo Yatra but Opposition Jodo Yatra,” he added referring to Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra.“Through Modi Virodhiyon Jodo Yatra they try to create an identity by coming together but no matter they try…,” Fadnavis added. Meanwhile, speaking at a rally in Ahmedabad’s Maninagar constituency, Fadnavis added, “This time such would be an immersion (visarjan) for Congress that it must not have ever thought. Rahul Gandhi is well aware about that and that is the reason he has vanished from Gujarat after one rally.”Fadnavis also reacted to Rahul’s remarks about Hindutva ideologue V D Savarkar. “He is abusing Savarkarji. He is saying that he is not Savarkar but mafiveer. He is not a freedom fighter but mafiveer… You should be ashamed. The person who took all the suffering in Andaman’s prison, Rahul Gandhi you will not understand his sacrifice.” Last week, Rahul questioned Savarkar’s nationalism by citing from a letter in which he had sought mercy from the British.Fadnavis added that the Congress has always humiliated Subhash Chandra Bose and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
Good morning! Get your day started with the top reads from today’s edition.Gujarat, Himachal election results todayThe Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is looking to return to power for a seventh consecutive term in Gujarat, riding on the Narendra Modi-wave. All eyes, however, are on the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), which is flying high after its win in the civic polls in Delhi, and hopes to create dents in the BJP bastion. A question remains over the Congress’s fate after its low-key campaign in the state.In Himachal Pradesh, meanwhile, exit polls have predicted a tight race between the BJP and Opposition Congress, with AAP’s bid falling short after it redirected its energies to the Gujarat elections.Head to indianexpress.com for live updates on the counting of votes, analysis and more.Here are five other stories you shouldn’t missThe role, however, comes with its own set of challenges — from an uphill task of selecting a mayor to tackling issues it attacked the BJP on.While the BJP has managed to perform better than exit polls had predicted, would it have retained its control over the MCD had it not been unified? Take a look at our analysis.The Congress, meanwhile, has won just nine out of 250 seats in the MCD, losing its hold over a city it once governed.2. The UP police thought it was a simple open-and-shut case. They believed that a 14-year-old girl, who went missing from her home in Aligarh, was killed and dumped over 90 km away in Agra by her neighbour. Little did the family and police know that the girl was now a married woman, a mother of two children, working mustard fields, attending weddings and religious functions at her new home in Hathras. A chance meeting with a katha vachak (storyteller) blew her cover and the police investigation.3. As tensions continue to mount along the Maharashtra-Karnataka border, the inter-state dispute was echoed in the Parliament on Wednesday. NCP member Supriya Sule accused Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai of “making ad hoc statements” and “conspiring to break Maharashtra”. Ruling BJP MPs from Karnataka took objection to her remarks and pointed out that the matter is in Supreme Court.4. The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has unveiled its latest review of the monetary policy. In it, the RBI cut India’s GDP (gross domestic product) growth forecast for the current financial year, maintained the inflation forecast, and raised the repo rate by 35 basis points. Why has RBI taken this hawkish stand? What does the GDP forecast signify about economic recovery? Udit Misra explains. 5. FIFA World Cup 2022: After Morocco’s win over Spain, the team’s star player Achraf Hakimi tore away to the enclosure where his mother was seated. He climbed over the barricade and hugged her, tears rolling down the eyes of both. Not just Hakimi, you could see several other teammates in the embrace of their parents. In fact, parents of most of the Moroccan players are in Doha to watch their children play, many capping long journeys of hardship and pain. 🎧 Before you go, tune in to our podcast, ‘3 Things’: In today’s episode, we talk about the border dispute between Maharashtra and Karnataka, Goldy Brar’s alleged detention and subsequent interview, and delay in Ayodhya Mosque after 2019 Supreme Court judgement.Until tomorrow, Sonal Gupta and Rahel Philipose
Will it be a seventh consecutive term in power for the BJP in Gujarat; how many seats will the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), flying high after its victory in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) elections on Wednesday, win; and what will be the Congress’s fate after it ran a low-key campaign?If the exit polls are anything to go by, the BJP is set to equal the Left Front’s record in West Bengal on Thursday while the Arvind Kejriwal-led party is not likely to cross 10 seats in the 182-member Assembly. The Congress, whose spirited campaign had brought down the ruling party’s tally to 99 seats in 2017, is expected to register its worst performance in Gujarat, with none of the pollsters giving the grand old party more than 51 seats.The BJP’s campaign blitzkrieg was centred around Prime Minister Narendra Modi who crisscrossed the state, making an emotional pitch to Gujaratis to “strengthen him”, the son of the soil. He addressed around 30 rallies and road shows, wrapping up the campaign with two roadshows and covering more than over 50 km in Ahmedabad city that is considered to be the BJP’s bastion. Union Home Minister Amit Shah was the second-most prominent campaigner for the party. He was in the state for almost two months, micromanaging the campaign and election strategy for the BJP. He also spent a considerable time in his Gandhinagar Lok Sabha constituency, finalising the candidate list and trying to pacify rebels.The BJP also deployed its heavy-hitters such as chief ministers Yogi Adityanath, Himanta Biswa Sarma, Shivraj Singh Chouhan and Pramod Sawant, Maharashtra Deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, and national president JP Nadda for campaigning. The ruling party struck a balance between playing its Hindutva card — it raked up issues such as the 2002 riots and “love jihad”, and in its poll manifesto promised an anti-radicalisation cell and the implementation of the Uniform Civil Code — and its caste arithmetic.Unlike in 2017, when the Patidar quota agitation hit the party hard and benefitted the Congress, this time the BJP tried to get the caste calculus right. It dropped veterans and fielded at least 19 candidates who were originally from the Congress, emphasising “winnability” at the cost of some dissidence in its rank and file.AAP’s debutThe AAP put as much effort into its campaign as the BJP, with its convener and Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann addressing almost as many rallies a day as Modi. With a debilitated Congress running a quiet campaign, the AAP succeeded in creating the perception that it is the main Opposition to the BJP. In a state where the BJP is overwhelmingly dominant, it projected itself as a better candidate to be a more vigilant Opposition than a deflated Congress.Kejriwal’s campaign was based on a call for change after decades of BJP rule and focused on pushing the Delhi school model, a set of “10 guarantees,” and the promise to take pilgrims to the Ram Temple in Ayodhya. Though the party is expected by all to open its account, most likely it has to be content with having a foundation on which it can build for the future in a state that has never had a third front.Interestingly, both the Congress and the BJP found common ground in their Opposition to the AAP, saying that the noise it created is disproportionate to its strength and that history isn’t on Kejriwal’s side when it comes to a third front. Former CMs Shankersinh Vaghela who led the Rashtriya Janata Party and Keshubhai Patel who led the Gujarat Parivartan Party (GPP) failed in building a third front in the state.Congress’s troublesIn 2017, the Congress was able to take advantage of the churning in the state resulting from the disenchantment of the Patidar community, farmers and traders with the BJP. Before the elections, it deputed its top leader Ashok Gehlot, the current Rajasthan CM, to Gujarat well in advance and allocated significant resources for campaigning.But this time, Rahul Gandhi, who led a major outreach and travelled across the state, was busy with the Bharat Jodo Yatra and visited Gujarat only for a day. Save Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge, other top leaders of the party were absent. Though former Gujarat Congress president Arjun Modhwadia claimed that this strategy of running a grassroots campaign “helped the candidates focus on the real issues of price rise, unemployment, on which the BJP avoided a debate”, the exit polls showed this will likely fail and lead to a further shrinking of its footprint in a state where it has been out of power for more than three decades.
A bandh call has been given in the industrial city of Pimpri-Chinchwad on Thursday in protest against the controversial remarks of Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari and BJP spokesperson Sudanshu Trivedi. The call has been given by the NCP, Shiv Sena (UBT), Congress, VBA and at least 100 social and voluntary organisations.“Essential services, hospitals, ambulances, schools and colleges have been exempted from the bandh. The NCP, Shiv Sena led by Uddhav Thackeray, Congress, VBA, AIMIM and at least 100 organisations are supporting the bandh,” Maruti Bhapkar, one of the organisers of the bandh, said.Activist Manav Kamble said the bandh has been called to protest against the “insulting” remarks of Koshyari and Trivedi. “We want the Governor to be shifted out of Maharashtra. The Governor has insulted Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj twice and it seems like there is a BJP conspiracy behind this,” he said.Bhapkar said the bandh will be enforced from 9 am to 5 pm. “All shops, industrial units, eateries and markets will remain closed to support the bandh,” he said.
The Shiv Sena (UBT), led by Uddhav Thackeray, has submitted around 20 lakh party membership forms and 2.83 lakh affidavits to the Election Commission (EC) of India, ahead of December 8 – the last day of submission of documents before the poll panel.From December 13, the EC will hear the dispute between the two Sena factions led by Thackeray and Chief Minister Eknath Shinde over which is the real Shiv Sena and would control the party’s organisational structure as well as have the right to use its election symbol bow and arrow.A Shiv Sena (UBT) leader said, “We have filed 2,83,000 affidavits of members from the organisational wing of the party and about 20 lakh primary membership forms. There are more members in the party but due to time constraints, we could only submit 20 lakh.”Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena, led by Shinde, has till now submitted around 10 lakh forms of primary membership and 1.8 lakh affidavits from office-bearers. A Shinde faction leader claimed they would submit 10 lakh more membership forms soon. “Ten lakh forms have been submitted to the poll panel in physical form. But we have 10 lakh more forms, which were filled online. We will soon submit the same to the EC,” the leader added.After rebelling against the Thackeray-led Shiv Sena in June, leading to the fall of the Maha Vikas Aghadi government, the Shinde faction had moved EC, seeking allocation of the party’s election symbol and his faction’s recognition as the “real” Shiv Sena. Both the factions of the party were instructed by the EC to submit documentary evidences of their factions, including letters of support and other documents to prove they are the original Sena.
Days after Mumbai Police’s Crime Branch busted a racket that supplied private data of individuals at a price, officials said the information had not been obtained from UIDAI — which secures Aadhaar card data — but was compiled from three to four different sources.The Crime Branch also arrested two more accused in the case from Pune on Tuesday, taking the total number of arrests in the case to six, including an accused who was arrested from Telangana.In the last week of November, the Crime Branch had arrested two brothers, Rahul (28) and Nikhil Eligati (25), who had created the websites — ‘tracenow.co.in’ and ‘www.fonivotech.com’ — which allegedly provided private data of residents of Maharashtra, Gujarat and Delhi.The data included everything from a person’s Aadhaar card number, address, date of birth and mobile numbers of relatives. This data was sold mainly to loan recovery agents at a monthly subscription cost of Rs 2,000,half-year subscription cost of Rs 12,000 or an annual subscription cost of Rs 24,000. A senior officer said that with six arrests so far, the Crime Branch has found that the accused had complied personal data of individuals from three to four places, including data leaked by telecom companies, vehicle data portals, and a popular Internet company, among others.“While initially we were looking into the possibility that the accused may have had access to the UIDAI server, it turns out that this is not the case,” said the officer.He added, “So far during the probe, we have found that the main purpose of the portal was to provide alternate details of people who took loans from loan recovery agents and had not paid back the amount. Some of them change their numbers and even addresses, which is when numbers of family members and neighbours are used by agents to track them down. Since the amounts involved are huge, they are willing to pay these portals for access to details.”An officer said that they have also identified the ‘mastermind’ of the racket, the seventh accused in the case who is currently on the run. “Once we arrest the seventh accused, we will get complete clarity on the manner in which the entire operation was carried out,” said the officer.So far, those arrested include three persons from Mumbai, two from Pune and one from Telangana.