This Adani 'topi-pehnau-ed' this wonderful nation: Mahua Moitra in Lok Sabha

News Network
February 8, 2023

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New Delhi, Feb 8: TMC MP Mahua Moitra on Tuesday launched a stinging attack on the government over the Adani-Hindenburg issue and said the billionaire businessman had 'topi-pehnau-ed (duped)' the country.

While participating in the debate on the 'Motion of Thanks to the President's Address' in Lok Sabha, Moitra, without naming Adani, said that a famous person whose name starts with 'A' and ends with 'I' and is not Advani, who stinks of crony capitalism, had duped everyone.

Soon after she concluded her speech, there were angry exchanges between Trinamool Congress (TMC) and BJP members. Moitra was heard using certain objectionable words to which the Chair objected and urged members to avoid cuss words.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi asked Moitra to apologise out of morality and said if she does not it would reflect on her culture.

Moitra brought two birthday caps to the House to press her argument that the businessman being most talked about had "topi-pehnau-ed" the government.

She demanded that an enquiry be ordered against the activities of the Adani group.

Beginning her address by quoting from President Droupadi Murmu's address, Moitra said, "Every word I utter is going to be an oblation and offering a truth into my 'maha yagna' of nation building."

"I want to start off by saying as an ex-investment banker, I want companies to thrive. But I want honest, hardworking Indian companies to strive and not trapeze artists. As an MP colleague of mine likes to say the Chair always asked me not to get angry. I will not be angry about what I have to say. I will only say that we've all been fooled," she said.

Moitra also alleged that the businessman gives the impression that doing things for him means that one would be in the prime minister and home minister's good books.

Referring to a statement by the Adani group in which it had said that short-seller Hindenburg's report was a calculated attack on India, she said, "The pride of India is not the wealth of one individual, pride of India lies in the robustness of its institutional structures."

She said a company which is in infrastructure makes five to 15 per cent returns if they are lucky and if they get everything right, but the multiple with which this company 'A' was trading was absolutely outrageous.

Even Google, Amazon and Microsoft don't trade on such multiples, she said.

"Honourable home minister, he has topi-pehnau-ed you...he is getting security clearances from the ministry of home affairs...Madam, finance minister he has topi-pehnau-ed you," the TMC leader said.

"This man has been allowed to use LIC, and SBI to get money as and when he likes. Honourable civil aviation, he has 'topi-pehnau-ed', you shipping minister, he has topi-pehna-ed you petroleum minister, he has 'topi-pehnau-ed' oil PSUs...power minister he has topi-pehnau-ed you," she said.

"India is on its way to becoming the third largest economy in the world. Don't let him smear your time in government, with a stink of crony capitalism. Please immediately order a full complete and thorough investigation into all matters...Our country's reputation is at risk," Moitra said.
She also said the House to has historically seen some of the greatest debates, some friendly, some not-so-friendly sparring matches.

"But it is more and less a sacred place where elected representatives could speak their minds without fear of favour...Today and I say this with a heavy heart, Lok Sabha is a space which stands out more for what cannot be said in this hall, then what can we say. The list of unmentionables is actually far longer than the list of mentionables," she claimed.

"We cannot say China, we cannot say Pegasus, we can not say BBC, we cannot say Morbi, we cannot say Rafael, and sometimes we cannot even say Modi ji...," she said.

The Opposition has been demanding a joint parliamentary committee probe or a Supreme Court-monitored investigation into the allegations of fraud and manipulation made by the US-based short seller Hindenburg Research against billionaire Gautam Adani's companies that triggered an unprecedented stock crash. The group has denied the charges.

The opposition parties have alleged that the meltdown in Adani Group shares is a 'mega scam' that involves common people's money as public sector LIC and SBI have invested in them and have questioned the government on steps taken by it.

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News Network
February 17,2024

Udupi, Feb 17: In a shocking incident, a 19-year-old student died by suicide by jumping off a building after going through the question paper during an examination in Manipal town of Udupi district in Karnataka.

The deceased student has been identified as Satyam Suman from Bihar. He was studying in the second year in the MCHP division at Mahe University.

The incident occurred during an ongoing examination in the college on Friday afternoon. 

Satyam had entered the examination hall and appeared visibly tense after receiving the question paper. He was reportedly found using a mobile phone, in violation of examination rules, by an invigilator. Upon being caught, he was asked to leave the examination hall. 

Overwhelmed by distress at being caught, the made the tragic decision to leap from the sixth floor of the college, resulting in his death, sources said. 

A case has been registered with the Manipal police station. However, the police said that the exact reason for the student’s action is yet to be ascertained. “It is unclear whether the victim was struggling with exam fear or was going through any other issue. We have initiated an investigation,” police said.

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News Network
February 19,2024

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The Palestinian Hamas resistance movement has denounced Israel’s plan to restrict Palestinians’ entry to the al-Aqsa Mosque compound during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, warning that the measure will explode the whole situation.

“An outburst of anger is waiting to go off in the face of the occupying regime in response to any restrictions on worship at the al-Aqsa Mosque during Ramadan,” Izzat al-Rishq, a member of the political bureau of Hamas, said on Sunday.

Earlier, Hamas had roundly condemned Israel’s plan to restrict Palestinians’ access to the al-Aqsa Mosque during Ramadan, stating that the decision is a reflection of the Zionist crimes and the religious war waged by hardliner elements in the Israeli administration against the Palestinian people.

In a statement, the Gaza-based group said the restrictions would be a “violation of the freedom of worship” in the holy site, adding that the plan showed Israel’s intention to increase its attacks on the mosque during the Muslim fasting month.

The statement called on Palestinians in occupied East al-Quds, the occupied West Bank and the 1948-occupied territories to reject and resist this “criminal decision”, urging them to “take action and flock to al-Aqsa Mosque.”

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday gave his green light to the recommendations of so-called national security minister Itamar Ben-Gvir and approved the restriction of Palestinians’ entry to the al-Aqsa Mosque during Ramadan.

A limited number of Palestinians will reportedly be allowed to enter the mosque during the month.

Several Hebrew-language media outlets, including Keshet 12 television channel, reported in the last two days that Israel’s so-called internal security service, Shin Bet, had warned the Tel Aviv regime that prohibiting Palestinians from entering the al-Aqsa Mosque during Ramadan “could lead to major disturbances.”

The agency warned that this decision could cause more “dangerous” disruption than the eruption of tensions in al-Quds, the West Bank, and the 1948-occupied territories.

Since the beginning of the war in the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces have restricted Palestinian Muslims’ access to the al-Aqsa Mosque, particularly on Fridays.

Last Friday, despite Israeli restrictions, approximately 25,000 Palestinian worshippers were able to enter the mosque in the Old City of al-Quds to perform Friday prayers for the first time since the war.

Ramadan is expected to begin this year on or around March 10.

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News Network
February 13,2024

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Mangaluru: A teacher was suspended from St Gerosa English Higher Primary School in Jeppu here on Monday, February 12, after a few parents and students instigated by Hindutva outfits accused her of hurting the sentiments of Hindus by calling Ramayana an imaginary story and “failing to respect” PM Narendra Modi during a Moral Science lesson.

The agitators, supported by elected representatives of BJP, alleged that a teacher from St Gerosa English HR Primary School in the coastal town taught students that the Mahabharat and the Ramayan were "imaginary".

Sr Anitha, the headmistress, said the teacher in question, Sr Prabha, in her late-40s and who had been teaching at the school for about 10 years, will soon be replaced.

The current incident came to light after an audio clip reportedly made by a parent and addressed to a Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader went viral on Saturday, leading to protests by parents in front of the school.

The parent claimed that a class seven teacher had made derogatory remarks during a Moral Science lesson titled 'Work is Worship', hurting religious sentiments. He claimed that the teacher reportedly made derogatory remarks about the consecration of Ram Lalla idol and the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya and made certain observations about the Godhra incident and the subsequent Gujarat riots of 2002.

“We will abide by the final decision of the inquiry team. Such an unfortunate incident had never happened in this 60-year-old school. It has created a temporary mistrust. We abide by the constitutional values and treat all faith and communities equally,” the headmistress said, as protests continued on Monday. At one point, the public tried to barge into the school compound, but were thwarted by the police.

The decision to suspend the teacher was taken after a meeting between deputy commissioner Mullai Muhilan MP, city police commissioner Anupam Agrawal, DDPI DR Naik and representatives of the school staff and management, following protests by a section of the parents and two MLAs, demanding action against the accused teacher.

The DC said an inquiry into the incident will be completed at the earliest.

Earlier in the day, BJP MLAs D Vedavyas Kamath and Dr Bharath Shetty, VHP leader Sharan Pumpwell, and others met the DDPI and submitted a memorandum, demanding suspension of the teacher.

While the school took its time to announce the suspension of the teacher, many students backed by Hindutva forces, too, joined the protests, even as slogans such as “Jai Shri Ram,” “Bharat Ka Baccha Jai Shree Ram Bolega,” “Bharat Mata ki jai, “Vande Mataram” rent the air.

Though the initial demand was to suspend Sr Prabha, later, irate parents and a section of the students also made allegations against another teacher who had allegedly made derogatory remarks against ‘Koragajja.’

Once the DC and police commissioner arrived at the spot, they tried to pacify the MLAs who claimed they had been waiting for nearly four hours without an appropriate response from the school management.

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