In a turnaround to a major fight against organised mafia in U.P., a court in Varanasi on Monday sentenced gangster-politician Mukhtar Ansari to life imprisonment for the murder of Awadhesh Rai, the brother of a Congress leader, more than 30 years ago. Awadhesh Rai, the brother of former MLA Ajay Rai, was shot dead on August 3, 1991, at the gate of his Lahurabir residence in Varanasi. A case was registered against Mukhtar Ansari and others.
The MP-MLA court's special judge Avanish Gautam awarded a life sentence to Ansari in the case, a lawyer told reporters outside the Varanasi court. Reacting to Ansari's conviction earlier in the day, Ajay Rai said, "This is the end of our many years of waiting. I, my parents, Awadhesh's daughter and the whole family kept patience... Governments came and went and Mukhtar strengthened himself.
"But we did not give up. Because of our lawyers' efforts, today the court has found Mukhtar guilty in the murder case of my brother," Rai added.
Gangster Mukhtar Ansari, a five-time MLA from Mau Sadar seat, did not contest the 2022 Uttar Pradesh Assembly election and the seat was won by his son Abbas Ansari on a ticket from the Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party, which had tied up with the Samajwadi Party.
The Yogo government of Uttar Pradesh must be complimented for eradicating syndicated mafia from the state and it has taken tremendous courage and conviction of the state political elite, officers, police force, and judicial officers to deliver a crime-free state to over 25 crore population of U.P.
Telugu Desam Party chief Chandrababu Naidu today met BJP president JP Nadda and Home Minister Amit Shah in Delhi to discuss an alliance ahead of the Telangana assembly election later this year and general elections next year. The meeting lasted for about half an hour. BJP and TDP may have an alliance for the Telangana assembly elections to be held this year, sources said.
TDP was a part of NDA in 2014 but quit the ruling alliance in March 2018 before the 2019 elections on the issue of special status to Andhra Pradesh. However, both parties came together after the recent municipal elections in Port Blair.
This turn round came after PM Modi remembered NT Rama Rao, TDP founder and Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh for seven years over three terms, on his birth anniversary in his radio program Mann Ki Baat last month.
After a crash involving three trains killed more than 230 people in Odisha last evening, questions are being raised about possible operational lapses that could have contributed to the tragedy. Between 6.50 pm and 7.10 pm on Friday, two collisions took place at Odisha's Balasore between three trains, leaving a mass of wrecked compartments and coaches on top of one another.
A passenger train, the Coromandel Shalimar Express, derailed after hitting a parked goods train and another train, the Yesvantpur-Howrah Superfast, crashed into the derailed coaches.
The impact was so hard that coaches were lifted high into the air before they smashed onto the tracks. One coach was tossed on its roof. Seventeen coaches of the two trains were severely damaged.
The Railways Ministry has ordered a probe into what may have caused the crash. PM Narendra Modi is likely to visit the accident site today.
On the poll promises made by Rahul Gandhi, the Karnataka Cabinet on Friday decided to implement the ruling Congress's five guarantees, without any discrimination of caste or religion, within this financial year, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said.
The Cabinet held a detailed discussion regarding the five guarantees and their implementation, and has arrived at decisions, Siddaramaiah who headed the meeting told reporters.
The Congress had promised to implement the ‘guarantees' - 200 units of free power to all households (Gruha Jyoti), Rs 2,000 monthly assistance to the woman head of every family (Gruha Lakshmi), 10 kg of rice free to every member of a BPL household (Anna Bhagya), Rs 3,000 every month for unemployed graduate youth and Rs 1,500 for unemployed diploma holders (both in the age group of 18-25) (YuvaNidhi), and free travel for women in public transport buses (Shakti) on coming to power.
The Gruha Jyothi scheme to provide 200 units of free electricity per month to every household will be implemented from July 1, Siddaramaiah said. However, the arrears have to be paid by the customers. Speaking about the Gruha Lakshmi scheme that provides Rs 2,000 per month to women heads of the family, also known as 'kartha', the CM said it will be implemented from August 15.
He said the application can be submitted for this, even online, from June 15 to July 15, and the applicants who want to be beneficiaries under the scheme will have to submit their Aadhaar and bank account details along with their applications.
Karnataka government is looking to ease the financial burden of implementing the promises of better tax collection.
In a continued drive against corruption, the CBI has filed a case against IL&FS Transportation Network Ltd and its directors for allegedly defrauding 19 banks of ? 6,524 crore between 2016 and 2018.
All the banks that the company allegedly cheated on include Punjab National Bank, Bank of India, State Bank of India, Axis Bank and Yes Bank, among others.
IL&FS Transportation Network is a subsidiary of IL&FS, which filed for bankruptcy in 2018.
In an effort to improve the bilateral relationship between the two countries, India and Nepal will strive to take their bilateral ties to Himalayan heights and resolve all matters, including the boundary issue, in this spirit, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday after holding wide-ranging talks with his Nepalese counterpart Pushpakamal Dahal 'Prachanda'.
In his media statement after the meeting, Modi said he and Prachanda have taken many important decisions to make the partnership between the two countries a "super hit" in the future.
Following the talks, Modi and Prachanda jointly launched several infrastructure projects. The two sides also signed seven agreements to boost cooperation in several areas including trade and energy.
The two leaders virtually inaugurated integrated check posts at Rupaidiha in India and Nepalgunj in Nepal. They also virtually flagged off a cargo train from Bathnaha in Bihar to Nepal custom yard. "We will continue to strive to take our relationship to Himalayan heights. And in this spirit, we will resolve all the issues, be it boundary related or any other issue," Modi said in the presence of Prachanda.
To further strengthen cultural and religious ties, PM Prachanda and I decided that projects related to the Ramayana circuit should be expedited, he added. Nepal is important for India in the context of its overall strategic interests in the region, and the leaders of the two countries have often noted the age-old "Roti Beti" relationship which refers to cross-border marriages between people of the two countries.
The country shares a border of over 1,850 km with five Indian states – Sikkim, West Bengal, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand. Land-locked Nepal relies heavily on India for the transportation of goods and services.
To monitor the situation and douse the fire, Union Home Minister Amit Shah said a judicial probe headed by a retired high court chief justice to inquire into clashes that erupted in the northeastern state of Manipur, will soon be announced.
He also announced at a press conference held here on Thursday that a peace committee under the Governor of Manipur, Anusuiya Uikey, which will have representatives of all political parties, besides representatives from both Kuki and Meitei communities and social organisations will be set up.
"Dialogue is the only solution to the ongoing crisis in Manipur," Shah said. "We will soon announce a judicial probe headed by a retired high court chief justice and set up a peace committee," he said.
The Home Minister also announced that a CBI probe will be instituted to probe five criminal conspiracies and one general conspiracy behind the violence in Manipur.
Freebies are raining in Rajasthan, the idea is to win the elections and defeat the future of the people living there.
This is the Congress's first big-ticket announcement since December when Ashok Gehlot had promised huge subsidies on cooking gas. The prices were slashed by more than half to provide 12 cylinders a year at ? 500 each.
The Congress has tweaked its free electricity promise -- which was hugely successful in Karnataka -- for Rajasthan, which will have its assembly election by the end of this year. Free electricity up to 100 units and a fixed rate for the next 100 was Ashok Gehlot government's announcement this evening, which, the Chief Minister said, is based on public feedback. The major late evening announcement came on a day Prime Minister Narendra Modi practically launched the party's campaign from Ajmer with a sharp attack on the state Congress, accusing it of corruption and factionalism.
Meanwhile, an AICC spokesperson in Delhi criticized the Modi government for doing the same in the last nine years rather than giving good governance.
BJP party has started to focus on the Rajasthan election 2023 by sending his top guns to the state. Prime Minister Narendra Modi today mocked the Congress in Rajasthan, raising questions about the stability of its government and what he called its "guarantee formula" for state elections. On a visit to Ajmer and Pushkar as part of the BJP's public outreach or Jan Sampark Abhiyan, PM Modi ripped into the Congress over corruption.
In an apparent reference to the Congress's five guarantees for Karnataka, where it won an election earlier this month, PM Modi said: "The Congress has a new formula of guarantees. But are they fulfilling their guarantees? Their guarantees will leave the country bankrupt."
The Congress's election campaign in Rajasthan, led by Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, focuses on social welfare schemes ranging from free electricity to cheaper cooking gas. "Fifty years ago, Congress guaranteed that it would remove poverty. But it turned out to be their biggest betrayal of the poor," PM Modi said.
"It has been a policy of the Congress to mislead the poor and keep them deprived. The people of Rajasthan have also suffered a lot due to this...And what has Rajasthan got? A government where MLAs, CM (Chief Minister) and ministers fight among themselves," he said.
The remarks referred to the Congress's Ashok Gehlot versus Sachin Pilot feud, which remains unresolved despite multiple attempts and a show of unity on Monday. Shortly after the PM's remarks, Sachin Pilot aimed another zinger at his own party, repeating his ultimatum for the Gehlot government on action over corruption allegations against the previous Vasundhara Raje-led BJP government.
"On the matter of corruption and justice, there is no compromise," Mr Pilot said. This was PM Modi's fourth visit this year to Rajasthan, where elections will be held in five months. The rally also marked nine years of the BJP government at the Centre.
PM Modi said his government, over the past nine years, had been dedicated to the service of the people, good governance, and the welfare of the poor. He cited his party's schemes, reading from a list without a pause. Before 2014, he said, people were on the streets against corruption and there were terror attacks in major cities while Congress ran the government by remote control.
"The Congress developed a corrupt system that sucked the blood of the country and hindered development," he said, referencing an old comment by former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi that out of 100 paise, only 15 paise reached the poor.
Meanwhile, Rajasthan BJP's top leader Vasundhara Raje was seen sitting next to the Prime Minister, giving the impression that she may lead the BJP campaign in the forthcoming elections.
While speaking at an event in San Francisco during his visit to the US, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said today that the government used "all its strength" to stop the Bharat Jodo Yatra. Rahul Gandhi arrived in San Francisco on Tuesday to begin a three-city tour of the United States. During his visit, he will meet with Indian expatriates and American lawmakers. "The government used all its strength to stop the Bharat Jodo Yatra. The BJP is threatening people and misusing government agencies. But nothing worked and the impact of the Yatra increased. This happened because the idea of 'Join India' is in everyone's heart," Rahul Gandhi said. "The Bharat Jodo Yatra started because all the instruments that we needed to connect with the people were controlled by the BJP-RSS."
The Bharat Jodo Yatra began in Kanyakumari on September 7 in 2022 and covered over 3,000 km before concluding in Srinagar on January 30 where Mr Gandhi raised the national flag. "The Bharat Jodo Yatra carried the spirit of affection, respect and humility. If one studies history, it can be seen that all spiritual leaders-including Guru Nanak Dev ji, Guru Basavanna ji, Narayana Guru ji-united the nation in a similar way," Rahul Gandhi said.
Rahul Gandhi's comments come just weeks before Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the US. Prime Minister Modi will arrive in the US in June at the invitation of President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden. The US president and the First Lady will also host a state dinner for the PM on June 22.
At the community event in San Francisco, Rahul Gandhi reiterated his party's call for a caste census. He said that it would be like an "x-ray" of society, revealing the extent of caste discrimination. He also said that schemes such as Nyay and MGNREGA would help in providing economic justice to the poor.
Rahul Gandhi accused the BJP and the RSS of attacking the Constitution and said that they were trying to divide the country on caste and religious lines. The 52-year-old is expected to speak to Indian Americans, meet with Wall Street executives, and interact with university students during his six-day-long tour of the US. He is scheduled to conclude his trip with a public gathering in New York on June 4 at the Javits Center.
Meanwhile, BJP attacked Rahul Gandhi for spreading lies and taking national issues to overseas destinations to defame the country.
The Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government completed nine years today. PM Modi, terming it as nine years of seva, said every decision taken in the past nine years was meant to "improve the lives of people".
"Today, as we complete 9 years in service to the nation, I am filled with humility and gratitude. Every decision made, and every action taken, has been guided by the desire to improve the lives of people. We will keep working even harder to build a developed India. #9YearsOfSeva," he tweeted.