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Will make efforts to instal Mayawati as PM: Chautala; Is Mayawati claimant of PM's post in 2019?

Sonepat :
Former Haryana Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala while addressing a joint meeting of the party workers of INLD and BSP from Gohana and Baroda Assembly constituencies at Gohana on Monday said, “Though I am not a forecaster, but on the basis of my political experience, I can say that the Central government can hold simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and Assembly any time between October and December this year.”
He announced that after forming an alliance with other political parties, every effort would be made to instal BSP supremo Mayawati the Prime Minister of the country.
Chiding the state BJP government, Chautala remarked that any government which had failed to provide basic amenities to its people had no right to rule. He asked the workers to make the party’s ‘Jail Bharo Andolan’ a great success.

He said that after formation of the INLD-BSP alliance government in the state, ‘Roti, Kapra, Mukan, Health and Education’ would be provided to the poor and needy. INLD’s national spokesman Dr KC Bangar, district president Padam Singh Dahiya, and other leaders of the BSP and INLD were present at the meeting.

Interestingly, on the direction of INLD supremo, the party workers and mediapersons were not allowed to take photographs of the meeting.

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Farmers’ 10-day protest from June 1; to boycott mandis; Will this protest affect the government?

Kurukshetra :
Farmer unions across the country have decided to suspend supply of vegetables and milk to wholesale markets from June 1 to 10. Growers from Haryana will join the ‘Kisan Avkash’ as well.

Famers are demanding price fixation policies for agricultural and horticultural produce, loan waiver and implementation of Swaminathan Commission recommendations.
Gurnam Singh Charuni, state president of the Bhartiya Kisan Union, said farmers would sell their produce at their own counters in their respective villages or near highways.
The prices would be fixed by farmers to maintain profitability, but the direct buyer would have to pay high rates, he said.

“Farmers will boycott sale in mandis and stay away from market purchase for 10 days. We had earlier proposed suspension of farm supplies, but now decided to open sale counters for the convenience of the public,” said Charuni.

He is also a member of the executive committee of the Rashtriya Kisan Mahasangh, an umbrella organisation of 172 unions across India. He said farmers would sit on dharna during the ‘Kisan Avkash’.

The mahasangh had been demanding a price fixation policy to regulate business activities of middlemen in the supply chain of agricultural products.

“Traders pay meagre amounts to farmers and the products are sold to consumers at high prices. We want the government to fix a minimum price for farm produce to avoid exploitation of farmers at the hands of traders,” said Charuni.

“There should be a transparent mechanism to regulate maximum profit margin for middlemen to ensure that the end user does not buy at a price several times the price paid to the farmer,” he said. He said a campaign had been started to seek the support of people from non-farming groups.

“The BJP governments at the Centre and in Haryana are suppressing the voice of farmers. Farmers are in a pitiable financial condition. We want a loan waiver and implementation of Swaminathan Commission recommendations to save lakhs of small and marginal families dependent on farming,” he added.

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Publicise govt achievements, DCs told; Will this decision lead to administrative reform?

Chandigarh :
Feeling that it is not getting its due and its visibility is not up to the mark, Manohar Lal Khattar-led government has decided to go on a publicity overdrive by going beyond its party leaders and roping in officers for the purpose.

The government directed all DCs on Monday to hold monthly press conferences on a specific date to apprise the public of ongoing schemes and plans being run in their districts.

In a letter, the monitoring and coordination cell directed all Divisional Commissioners and Deputy Commissioners to give wide publicity about future initiatives and vision of the state government.

The move comes in the year preceding parliamentary and state elections and at a time when opposition parties are leaving no stone unturned to put the government on the mat.
Constantly under fire from the INLD and Congress for issues ranging from unfulfilled manifesto promises to faltering on providing good governance and better law and order, the government finds itself low on visibility in terms of its achievements.

Media adviser to Chief Minister Rajiv Jain said he had visited 17 districts within a month of assuming charge. He claimed that this publicity drive had nothing to do with the elections next year.

“DCs will hold press meets to project the vision of the government and apprise the public of systematic changes and pro-people policies. We are only reviving a tradition,” he said.
The timing had roots in the fact that the government wanted to portray itself in better light and wanted it done not through its leaders, but through neutral officers.

Sources said though ministers had been holding press conferences from time to time and inaugurating projects, this did not seem enough to state leaders.

Since ministers and MLAs invariably ended up tom-tomming various decisions, the onus to take achievements of the government to the people, give it more visibility and build up momentum had been placed on field officers.

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Southwest monsoon hits Kerala, three days before onset date: IMD; Will monsoon get relief from heat coming soon?

New Delhi :
The southwest monsoon on Tuesday hit Kerala, three days before its scheduled arrival, says the India Meteorological Department (IMD).

The onset of monsoon over the southern state marks the commencement of the four-month long rainy season in the country.

June 1 is the official onset date for arrival of monsoon in the country and it takes more than a month-and-half to cover the entire country.

The IMD has made a forecast of "normal" rainfall this season.

Skymet, a private weather forecasting agency and a rival of the IMD, had said that the monsoon made its arrival in Kerala on Monday.

According to the IMD, if after May 10, 60 per cent of the available 14 stations --Minicoy, Amini, Thiruvananthapuram, Punalur, Kollam, Allapuzha, Kottayam, Kochi, Thrissur, Kozhikode, Thalassery, Kannur, Kudulu and Mangalore -- report 2.5 mm or more rainfall for two consecutive days, the onset of monsoon over Kerala can be declared on the second day. This is one of the main parameters for declaring the arrival of monsoon.
Besides this factor, the westerly winds must be up to 15,000 feet above main sea level and outgoing long-wave radiation less than 200 wm-2 (watt per square metre) to declare the arrival of monsoon. 

All the necessary parameters were met following which the onset of monsoon over Kerala was announced, Mritunjay Mohapatra, Additional Director General, IMD said.

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Congress to waive loans of small farmers: Surjewala; Is Congress showing dreams to the public?

Hisar :
Congress leader and Kaithal MLA Randeep Singh Surjewala has stated that on coming to power in Haryana, the Congress would waive the farm loans up to Rs 50,000 given to farmers having landholdings of less than two acres, landless agricultural labourers and the poor.

Addressing a Kisan Yuva Adhikar rally at Kheri Chaupta village in Narnaund Assembly segment of the district on Sunday, Surjewala alleged that the present government was not providing due rates for the agricultural produce.

“The government has failed to provide even the officially announced Minimum Support Prices (MSP) for various crops. Debt relief is urgently required for providing interim relief to the small farmers, Scheduled Castes, Backward Classes and small shopkeepers. If the Punjab Government could provide a loan relief to 22 lakh farmers despite its financial problems, there is no reason that the BJP government should not give the same relief to state farmers,” he maintained.

Questioning the Central and state governments for not waiving agricultural loans, the Congress leader said when loans of a dozen industrialists amounting to Rs 2.41 lakh crore could be waived, then why the loans of Rs 2 lakh crore taken by 62 crore farmers cannot be waived.

He pointed out that the insurance companies had been paid Rs 20,478 crore in kharif-2016 and Rabi 2016-17 as insurance premium amount, but farmers have been paid compensation of Rs 5,650 crore only.

Castigating the BJP government for the skyrocketing prices of petrol and diesel, Surjewala said despite the international prices of crude oil being nearly half as compared to the prices during the tenure of the UPA government, the people of the country and the region were being forced to pay much higher prices for petrol and diesel.

“During the last four years, the BJP regime has increased the Central excise duty on petrol by 211.7 per cent and on diesel by 443.06 per cent. Similarly, the state BJP government increased the VAT on petrol from 21 per cent to 26.25 per cent and almost doubled the VAT on diesel from 9.24 per cent to 17.22 per cent,” he stated.

Surjewala criticised the state government for its auction notices to 5,000 farmers who could not clear their bank dues. He asserted that the Congress stands firmly with the distressed farmers and would not let the state government go ahead with its plan of auctioning farmers’ land.

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