‘Won’t blame others’, says D K Shivakumar after two Cong leaders attribute him to alleged scam

News Network
October 14, 2021

Bengaluru, Oct 14: The Congress' Karnataka unit president D K Shivakumar said he will not blame anyone for the viral video in which former Lok Sabha member V S Ugrappa and media coordinator M A Saleem attributed him to an alleged scam when he was a Minister.

"People have already spoken whatever they wanted. I will not blame the BJP or the media. We only gave others a chance to use us," Shivakumar told reporters here.

He was responding to the queries on the embarrassing video of the purported conversation between Saleem and Ugrappa on Tuesday ahead of a press meet at the party's meeting hall. In the video, Saleem is purportedly heard calling Shivakumar a 'Collection Giraaki' (extortionist), who allegedly increased the 'commission' in irrigation contracts from eight per cent to 12 per cent.

The party suspended Saleem from the party for six years and served a show-cause notice to Ugrappa, who is Congress spokesperson, seeking an explanation in three days. The Congress state chief said the issue related to the viral video was not personal but pertained to a party, which was built by the lakhs of party workers.

Hitting back at the BJP for targeting him following the viral video, Shivakumar said let the BJP take note of what their leaders have spoken against their leader such as MLC A H Vishwanath, C P Yogeshwar, Ramesh Jarkiholi and Basanagouda Patil Yatnal.

"Why the BJP has not yet answered to the charges levelled by Vishwanath, Yogeeshwar, Ramesh Jarkiholi and Yatnal (against former Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa and his family)? Why are they not speaking about collection during the BJP's tenure," the Congress state chief said.

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News Network
October 28,2021

New Delhi, Oct 28: India logged 16,156 new coronavirus infections, taking the total tally of Covid-19 cases to 3,42,31,809, while the active cases declined to 1,60,989, the lowest in 243 days, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Thursday.

The death toll climbed to 4,56,386 with 733 fresh fatalities. 

The daily rise in new coronavirus infections has been below 30,000 for 34 straight days and less than 50,000 daily new cases have been reported for 123 consecutive days.

The active cases comprise 0.47 per cent of the total infections, the lowest since March 2020, while the national Covid-19 recovery rate was recorded at 98.20 per cent, the highest since March 2020, the ministry said.

A decrease of 1,672 cases has been recorded in the active Covid-19 caseload in a span of 24 hours.

The daily positivity rate was recorded at 1.25 per cent. It has been less than 2 per cent for last 24 days. The weekly positivity rate was also recorded at 1.19 per cent. It has been below two per cent for the last 34 days, according to the ministry.

A total of 60,44,98,405 persons have been tested for the virus until October 27. 

The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 3,36,14,434.

The cumulative doses administered in the country so far under the nationwide Covid-19 vaccination drive has exceeded 104.04 crore.

India's Covid-19 tally had crossed the 20-lakh mark on August 7, 2020, 30 lakh on August 23, 40 lakh on September 5 and 50 lakh on September 16. It went past 60 lakh on September 28, 70 lakh on October 11, crossed 80 lakh on October 29, 90 lakh on November 20 and surpassed the one-crore mark on December 19.

India crossed the grim milestone of two crore on May 4 and three crore on June 23.

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News Network
October 27,2021

Bengaluru, Oct 27: Union Minister of State for Chemicals & Fertilizers Bhagwanth Khuba on Tuesday claimed that the rising prices of essential commodities has not affected the common man.

"Where is the public outrage? There is no outrage," he said.

Khuba was responding to a question on rise in fuel prices at a news conference.

He maintained that the fuel hike was linked to oil bond loans imposed by the previous UPA government, a claim that has been countered by the Congress earlier. However, Khuba said the oil bonds, coupled with inflation, caused the price rise.

"There is no issue with the hike. It is only the Congress that is creating a ruckus over the issue. There is no public outcry against the hike," he asserted. "This is because the public is satisfied with the BJP government. The BJP government has controlled inflation in a much better manner compared to the previous UPA regime. People are aware of this," said Khuba, who represents Bidar in Lok Sabha.

Meanwhile, Khuba also sought to clarify that there was no shortage of fertilisers. This follows some protests by farmers in the state over the issue. "There is no shortage of fertilisers. The government has enough stock. Farmers have been misinformed about it," he said.

He further lashed out at Leader of the Opposition Siddaramaiah for spreading misinformation. "The Congress is desperate to win the bypolls in Hangal and Sindagi, when they know that they do not stand a chance against BJP. With ulterior motives, Siddaramaiah is spreading misinformation on fertiliser shortage," he charged.

Spreading rumours about shortage when there is none will only lead to artificial deficit as farmers will start hoarding up fertilisers and middlemen will begin fleecing farmers with exorbitant prices, he pointed out.

According to government data, there is a total demand of 2.8 lakh MT until the end of October 2021 for fertilisers. This includes Muriate of Potash (MOP), Di-ammonium Phosphate (DAP), Complex fertiliser and Urea. After fulfilling the demand, there is still 6.05 lakh MT of fertiliser available, according to Khuba.

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News Network
October 18,2021

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Thiruvananthapuram, Oct 18: As the death toll in Kerala floods and heavy rainfall reached 35, the Congress-led opposition on Monday accused the Pinarayi Vijayan government of not acting on time. However, the government quickly denied the charges.

Leader of Opposition V.D. Satheesan, who on Sunday visited the worst-affected areas in Idukki and Kottayam districts, raised questions as to why, despite the IMD warning, the state government failed to act.

"Wish to know why and what happened and it has now proved that the State government failed to act on warnings. We are told it took several hours for the team of government officials to reach certain spots with men and material to do the rescue act. Something has gone wrong and we want answers," said Satheesan.

State Revenue Minister K. Rajan, however, said there has been no wrong on the part of the State government.

"We rely on the reports and act on the basis of the Centre and we have done just that. Strict action will be taken against those who misuse social media when the state is passing through tough times," said Rajan.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan is chairing a meeting to discuss the floods and the strategy to be adopted to open dams in the state which are full. The one decision that was taken is that dam shutters will only be opened during the daytime.

On Wednesday, when the Assembly session resumes, the opposition is going to raise the issue in the House.

Meanwhile, around 4,000 people are now lodged at various camps that have been opened in Idukki, Kottayam, Pathanamthitta and Alappuzha districts of the state.

The latest weather forecast, which has now come out predicts heavy rains to lash the state starting Wednesday.

It all started with the century's biggest floods in 2018 and since then every year, Kerala has seen heavy rains and flash floods.

This time the worst-affected have been the Kottayam and Idukki districts and though the rains have slowed down since Saturday evening and on Monday morning, authorities have issued an alert in eight of the 14 districts of the state.

However, on Monday in Pathanamthitta district in Central Kerala, things appear not very encouraging.

Meanwhile, social media has also termed the recurring natural disasters as nothing but man-made and numerous trolls have highlighted the statement of noted environmentalist Madhav Gadgil, who headed the Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel and in 2013 warned that if Kerala does not stop tampering with the Western Ghats, a huge disaster would be round the corner. 

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