No immediate ‘Operation Lotus’ in Himachal Pradesh as BJP concedes defeat

News Network
December 8, 2022

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With the Congress set to cross the majority mark in the 68-member Himachal Pradesh Assembly, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur Thursday said he respects the mandate and was going to hand over his resignation to the governor. Meanwhile, the BJP conceded defeat in Himachal Pradesh.

"I respect the mandate. In a short while, I am going to hand over my resignation to the governor," Thakur told reporters here.

The Congress on Thursday was set to achieve majority in Himachal Pradesh as it surged ahead of the BJP, winning 16 seats and leading in 23 others.

According to the latest results and trends, the ruling BJP had registered a win on 13 seats and was leading in as many others.

Three Independents have also emerged victorious.
 

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News Network
January 24,2023

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Bengaluru, Jan 24: Former Minister and BJP MLA Ramesh Jarkiholi, who recently had promised Rs 6,000 per vote, has now said that saffron party would form government in Karnataka even if doesn’t get majority. 

“I am sure that the BJP will win majority seats. But even if that does not happen, the party will form the government. We will do whatever it takes to form our own government,” he said. He was speaking at a party rally in said in Gokak. 

A couple of days ago, Jarkiholi had had stirred controversy after announcing Rs 6,000 to everyone who votes for BJP. “I urge you not to vote for our candidate if we don't give you ₹ 6,000,” he announced during a BJP rally in Belagavi. 

Jarkiholi has taken credit for the defection of the 17 Congress and Janata Dal(S) legislators to the BJP that brought down the coalition government led by H.D. Kumaraswamy.

Jarkiholi was forced to resign from his ministerial post in 2021 following his alleged role in a sex scandal.

The Congress demanded that the Election Commission take the former minister's remarks into consideration.

"This goes to show the level of corruption in the BJP. Why isn't the Election Commission or IT or ED not taking note of this?" said Congress MLA Priyank Kharge, who is also the state party's communications in charge.

"Operation Lotus is a fact. He's endorsing it. There are two and a half lakh voters. This isn't a joke. Isn't this malpractice by a BJP leader? Where is BJP getting all this money from?? Why no suo motu (investigation) by Election Commission?" he added.

Elections to the Karnataka Assembly are slated to take place in May.

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News Network
January 26,2023

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Bengaluru, Jan 26: "In the next 25 years of the golden period of Amritkal, it is our duty to construct a respectable and developed India, which will make our nation the crown of the world," said Karnataka Governor Thawarchand Gehlot on Thursday.

Addressing the public on the occasion of the 74th Republic Day celebrations at the Manekshaw Parade Ground in the city on Thursday, Gehlot emphasised the citizens' commitment to strive for the country's development and celebrate its achievements.

Calling Karnataka one of the progressive states in the country, he provided a brief update of the 14 schemes implemented in the state as part of the 'Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav' programme. These schemes and programs range from employment generation, agriculture, housing, education, and health, to entrepreneurship, industry, women empowerment and more. 

"Karnataka stands fourth in the latest SDG India Index report 2020-21," the Governor said, adding that it retains its position as the most innovative state and is the best performing state under the Startup Ranking of the states by Government of India. 

"I have faith that all of you will not just take active part in public life, but also encourage everyone to contribute to our nation's progress," he said. 

Gehlot urged citizens to work together for the health and prosperity of the state. "Let us resolve to strengthen the sovereignty, unity, and prosperity of the nation and move forward," he said. 

Speaking after paying tributes to the martyrs at National War Memorial, Chief Minster Basavaraj Bommai wished the people on the occasion of RD celebrations. "Our country is modern and progressive and humane and marching forward with the theme of Sab Ka Saath, Sab Ka Vikas, Sab Ka Prayas", he said. He urged people to dedicate themselves to the Constitution and vow to work for the progress of the nation. 

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News Network
January 19,2023

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New Delhi: Top Indian wrestlers Vinesh Phogat, Sakshi Malik, Anshu Malik and Bajrang Punia are among a group of sportspersons who have accused Bharatiya Janata Party MP from Kaiserganj, Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, of sexual harassment and physical abuse.

Singh is president of the Wrestling Federation of India. He has denied the allegations and told ANI that if such a thing has indeed happened, he will “hang” himself. In 2021, Singh had been caught on video slapping a wrestler at the Under-15 Nationals in Ranchi.

The wrestlers, who sat in an unprecedented protest at New Delhi’s Jantar Mantar, pointed to Singh’s alleged “dictatorship” in running the federation, noting that mistreatment of wrestlers had been going on for years. Among the 30 gathered were also Sarita Mor, Sangeeta Phogat, Satyawart Malik, Jitender Kinha, and Commonwealth Games medallist Sumit Malik, according to India Today.

“Women wrestlers have been sexually harassed at national camps by coaches and also the WFI president,” Vinesh Phogat said, stressing that the WFI president is also involved in the sexual harassment of “so many girls.”

Some coaches who the federation considers “favourites” misbehave with women coaches too, Vinesh said.

“Today I have said this, I don’t know if I will be alive tomorrow. People in WFI are very powerful,” Vinesh was quoted by Indian Express as having said.

Part of Haryana’s Phogat wrestling family, Vinesh is the first Indian woman wrestler to win gold in both Commonwealth and Asian Games. She has multiple golds from the World Wrestling Championships. Vinesh’s cousin, wrestler Babita Phogat and her uncle, Mahavir Phogat, had joined the Bharatiya Janata Party in 2020.

Vinesh reportedly said that she had been trying to get the federation to listen to her concerns for a decade now. She told ANI that she and other wrestlers are ready to “submit evidence” to the prime minister and any high court that might ask for it.

“This is not fair and we have been silently tolerating this. But not anymore,” Bajrang Punia, who has won Olympic Bronze, told Indian Express.

Punia also added that wrestlers have taken care not to involve politicians in their protest, but told the news agency PTI that while their grouse was not against a political outfit or the Sports Authority of India, this was going to be a “fight to the finish.”

“Wrestlers are being harassed by the Wrestling Federation of India. Those who are a part of WFI know nothing about the sport,” Punia told reporters as well.

Wrestler Sakshi Malik, also an Olympic medalist and related to the Phogats, said that the wrestlers are ready to “speak to the prime minister and home minister to reveal details.”

“Whole federation should be removed so that the future of new wrestlers is safe. A new federation should come into existence,” she said.

MP Singh has responded to the allegations by asking Vinesh Phogat why she wore “a costume with a company’s logo on it” at the Olympics.

“Is there any person in front who can say that the Federation harassed any athlete?” he asked news agency ANI. He also said that there has been “no incident of sexual harassment” and that he would hang himself if such a thing has happened. 

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