Congress may raise representation of SCs, STs, OBCs and minorities in party to 50 per cent

News Network
May 14, 2022

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Mangaluru, May 14: The Congress is likely to bring in a measure to ensure 50 per cent representation to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, OBCs and minorities at all levels of the party organisation.

A decision on this has been taken by the panel on social justice and empowerment formed by party chief Sonia Gandhi to lead discussions on this issue at the Congress' three-day 'Nav Sankalp Chintan Shivir' here, party leader K Raju said.

He added that it is likely to be recommended for approval of the Congress Working Committee.

Raju said the panel is also likely to propose establishing a social justice advisory council to the Congress president.

This advisory council will look at issues and give recommendation to the president, he said.

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News Network
June 20,2022

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New Delhi: With the government standing its ground on the 'Agnipath' military recruitment scheme, some organisations called for 'Bharat Bandh' on Monday amid the ongoing protests demanding a rollback of the plan.

Here are the latest developments:

>> Even as the protests continued over the centre's 'Agnipath' short-term recruitment plan for armed forces, the Army today issued a notification for the induction of soldiers under the scheme. The online registration begins from July, said the notification.

>> Over 600 trains have been cancelled today in view of the Bharat Bandh call in parts of the country over the centre's 'Agnipath' scheme. The railways has suffered a major loss of property due to arson and rioting by the protesters over the last five days.

>> Congress leaders have sat on a 'Satyagraha' at Jantar Mantar in the national capital to express solidarity with the armed forces aspirants protesting against the 'Agnipath' scheme. Some Youth Congress workers were detained after they blocked a train at the Shivaji Bridge railway station near Connaught Place. Parts of Delhi witnessed traffic jams as the police have tightened security across the city and its bordering areas. 

>> In Haryana, a group of job aspirants blocked the Lal Batti Chowk in Fatehabad, while several others staged a protest on roads in Rohtak district. Security has been stepped up at several locations in Kerala, Telangana, West Bengal and Rajasthan also to avoid any untoward incident.

>> Uttar Pradesh Police said strict action will be taken against those found involved in jeopardising peace. In Punjab, the police have been asked to monitor the activities of social media groups which are allegedly mobilising or spreading instigating information about the scheme.

>> The Bihar government has increased security at party offices considered vulnerable. As of now, internet services remain shut in 20 districts. In Jharkhand, all schools will remain closed today amid protests over the 'Agnipath' scheme.

>> The three services of the military on Sunday came out with a broad schedule of enrolment under the 'Agnipath' scheme and warned those who indulged in violence and arson will not be inducted.

>> The Home and Defence ministries on Saturday promised new 10 per cent quotas each in jobs for 'Agnipath' recruits after their four-year tenure in the armed forces. Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said that the PSUs under his housing and petroleum ministries are also working on plans to induct 'Agniveers'.

>> The Home Ministry has further decided to give 3 years of age relaxation beyond the prescribed upper age limit to Agniveers for recruitment in Central Armed Police Forces and Assam Rifles. 

>> Protests erupted in several states after June 14 when the centre unveiled the 'Agnipath' recruitment plan. Under the scheme, people between 17.5 and 21 years will be recruited in the armed forces for a four-year period, followed by compulsory retirement for most without gratuity and pension benefits.

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News Network
June 28,2022

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Guwahati, June 28: The dissident Shiv Sena MLAs, who are camping at the luxury Radisson Blu hotel in Guwahati for the past few days are passing their time by playing various indoor games including chess and ludo.

"Other than a couple of meetings within themselves, they have no other serious activity in Guwahati. To pass their time, they are playing various indoor games including chess and ludo to keep themselves engaged," a source close to the MLAs told the media on condition of anonymity.

The rebel legislators led by disgruntled Maharashtra Minister Eknath Shinde are not allowed to go outside the hotel.

Initially, the MLAs booked rooms of the hotel for about a week.

Assam BJP MLAs, leaders and ministers are occasionally visiting the hotel, and briefly talking with the Maharashtra lawmakers.

Assam police commandos led by senior officials are closely looking after the security of the MLAs, and from time to time, also reviewing the hotel security.

The hotel authorities refused fresh booking of common boarders except the passengers from airlines, with which the hotel has long term arrangements.

Assam's ruling BJP has been maintaining that it has nothing to do with the Maharashtra political crisis and camping of the MLAs in Guwahati.

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma claimed that these people are guests and have chosen Guwahati for their stay on their own.

Shiv Sena leaders from Manipur led by state President M. Tombi Singh came to the hotel on Monday to meet Eknath Shinde. However, they were not allowed to meet.

The main opposition Congress in Assam earlier asked the dissident Maharashtra MLAs to leave the state at the earliest in the greater interest of the state.

Since last Wednesday morning, dissident MLAs of Shiv Sena, Independents and others have been camping at the hotel posing a threat to the Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray-led coalition government in Maharashtra.

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News Network
June 23,2022

Mumbai, June 23: Amid a rebellion by Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde, party MP Sanjay Raut on Thursday said the Sena is ready to quit the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra if the group of rebel legislators camping in Assam returns to Mumbai in 24 hours and discusses the issue with Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.

Shinde is currently camping with 37 rebel MLAs of the Sena and nine independents in Guwahati, which has plunged the party-led state government into a crisis. The NCP and Congress also share power in the Uddhav Thackeray-led dispensation.

"You say you are real Shiv Sainiks and will not quit the party. We are ready to consider your demand provided you come back to Mumbai in 24 hours and discuss the issue with CM Uddhav Thackeray. Your demand will be considered positively. Don't write letters on Twitter and WhatsApp," Raut told reporters.

"The rebels who are out of Mumbai have raised the issue of Hindutva. If all these MLAs feel that Shiv Sena should walk out of the MVA, show guts to come back to Mumbai. You say you have issues only with the government and also say that you are true Shiv Sainiks...Your demand will be considered. But come and talk with Uddhav Thackeray," he added.

CM Thackeray had on Wednesday offered to quit the top post amid the rebellion by Shinde and later also vacated his official residence in south Mumbai before moving to his family home in suburban Bandra. 

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