AAP releases manifesto: Arvind Kejriwal promises to get full statehood for Delhi
Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Thursday released its manifesto for the Lok Sabha Election 2019, with the party promising full statehood for the National Capital. Releasing the manifesto, Delhi Chief Minister and AAP convenor Arvind Kejriwal said his party would do everything to stop the "Modi-Shah duo" from coming to power and that the party would support any "secular mahagathbandhan" after the Lok Sabha Election.
Kejriwal said his party would try its best to get full statehood for Delhi. "We will fight our battle on the issue of getting full statehood for Delhi," he said, adding that people of Delhi were being treated as second class by the ruling BJP government at the Centre. He said if Delhi would get full statehood, the UT's police would be accountable to the state government, and people of the state, especially women would feel safe.
He said the government would also ensure 85 percent of Delhi's children would get admission in its colleges. He also promised to regularise all contractual employees. Promising to make Delhi cleaner, Kejriwal said all MCDs would come under the Delhi government if it got full statehood. He said if Delhi was a state, his government could have easily passed the Jan Lokpal bill by now. "In our manifesto, we have mentioned several examples of how many capitals in the world are separate states, and all the rights are under the elected state governments," Delhi Deputy CM Minister Manish Sisodia said.
Targeting BJP Chief Amit Shah over his remarks that the BJP government would remove all "infiltrators" except Hindus, Sikhs, and Buddhists from the country, Kejriwal said: "This proves that the BJP plans to remove all other religions except these three religions. The election of 2019, electing to save the Democracy of India, is the choice to save the country's constitution." He said today India's culture and unity were under attack and that the country could be saved only if people didn't get divided across religion and caste lines. Hitting out at Congress President Rahul Gandhi over the issue of the alliance in Delhi, Kejriwal said: "(I) want to ask Rahul Gandhi which alliance is formed on Twitter? If Modi and Shah return to power, only Gandhi will be responsible," Kejriwal said.
Is Kejriwal correct in protesting for full statehood of Delhi?
BJP fields Gautam Gambhir from East Delhi
Gautam Gambhir, the cricketer-turned-politician, is the BJP's candidate in the East Delhi constituency, the party said in a release today. Also on the list is Meenakshi Lekhi, a BJP parliamentarian, who is fielded in the New Delhi constituency.
Mr. Gambhir has replaced Maheish Girri as the party's candidate and will take on Arvinder Singh Lovely of the Congress and Atishi of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
Ms. Lekhi is pitted against AAP's Brajesh Goel and Ajay Maken of the Congress.
On Monday, the BJP had released a list of five candidates in which it re-nominated four of its sitting lawmakers in the national capital.
Union Minister Harsh Vardhan and BJP state unit president Manoj Tiwari have been fielded in Chandni Chowk and North East Delhi seats respectively.
Former Delhi Chief Minister Saheb Singh Verma's son Parvesh Verma has been fielded in West Delhi and Ramesh Bidhuri in South Delhi.
The former India opening batsman, who retired from cricket in December after a 15-year stint, joined the party last month. "I have been influenced by the PM, his vision for the country. This is a fabulous platform for me to do something for the country," Gautam Gambhir, 37, had said after joining the party.
His social media posts with strong comments on contemporary politics and incidents had inspired talk about his joining politics. His Twitter account is full of posts on the Pulwama terror attack, in which 40 soldiers were killed by a suicide bomber of the Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed.
Mr. Gambhir, a resident of Delhi's Rajinder Nagar, had campaigned for BJP leader Arun Jaitley in Amritsar in the 2014 national elections.
Is it the right move by BJP?
"Biopic Joke, Make Comedy Film On Him": Urmila Matondkar Attacks PM Modi
Actor-turned-politician Urmila Matondkar on Thursday took a savage dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying he didn't deserve a biopic as he failed to deliver anything like the head of the government. Ms. Matondkar, who is contesting the national election in Mumbai North as a Congress candidate, further said a comedy film should be made on the PM.
"The biopic made on his (PM Modi's) life is nothing but a joke as the prime minister, who claims to have a 56-inch-chest, has miserably failed to deliver anything. The movie made on his life is a joke on the democracy, poverty, and diversity of India, which has been damaged," Ms. Matondkar quoted.
"Rather, a comedy film should be made on him and his unfulfilled promises," she added.
Actor Vivek Oberoi, a self-proclaimed fan of PM Modi, starred in a film titled "PM Narendra Modi", which hit a roadblock as the Election Commission stayed its release until the national election was over, saying it may disturb the level playing field in polls.
Incidentally, Mr. Oberoi had made a similar comment on the Congress president Rahul Gandhi in an interview. "Why should I make a biopic on Rahul Gandhi? What has he done that is noteworthy," he had said. "I'd have to shoot most of the film in Thailand," he had further added.
Urmila Matondkar, a popular actor, joined the Congress last month. She would take on the BJP candidate Gopal Shetty, who is also the sitting parliamentarian from the constituency.
"What can be worse than a prime minister of a democratic country not holding even a single press conference in the last five years," she added.
Do you agree with the statement of Urmila Matondkar?
BJP Makes It Up To Ex-Minister's Wife, Overlooked For Bengaluru Contest
Tejaswini Ananth Kumar, wife of late parliamentarian Ananth Kumar, has been appointed as the vice president of the BJP's Karnataka unit, a week after being denied a party ticket for the national election from her husband's constituency Bengaluru South.
Karnataka BJP chief BS Yeddyurappa, who was surprised at the party's decision to give the national election ticket to a 28-year-old worker, announced her appointment on Twitter today. "I am very delighted to announce that Tejaswini Ananth Kumar has been appointed as the state vice president of BJP Karnataka. Wishing her all the very best," he tweeted.
Mr. Yeddyurappa had told that Tejaswini Ananth Kumar would be the BJP's candidate from Bengaluru South, a constituency represented by her husband five times. But in a surprising move, the party decided to give the ticket to Tejasvi Surya, a lawyer and a member of the BJP's national social media campaign team.
Tejasvi Surya's name was announced by the BJP's central leadership with just hours left in the deadline for filing of nominations. It was expected that the BJP would field Tejaswini from the constituency. She was so certain of being given the ticket that she had even started campaigning. After the decision, however, she did not protest.
"It is shocking to (my workers) and even to me. I have been telling myself it is important to show our maturity, that we are a party with a difference," Tejaswini Ananth Kumar said.
"I stand with the party's decision. Let's not start asking questions. If we have to contribute to the country then we have to work for (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi-ji."
She got her reward today-- a senior party position.
Tejaswini Ananth Kumar is an engineer and runs an NGO. She has not been in electoral politics, but she has campaigned for her husband, who died last year.
Do you think this was the right move?
Firing of Pakistan in Poonch, BSF jawan martyr, 6 year old child dies
Pakistan does not care about its activities. Pakistan Army, which is continuously breaking the ceilings from across the border, on Monday again mortgaged the villages by targeting the villages in Poonch. An officer of BSF has been martyred in the firing from Pakistan. BSF said that five jawans were injured in the firing on behalf of Pakistan, in which a young man was killed during treatment.
Lt Col Devendra Anand, the spokesman of the Ministry of Defense, told that at 7.45 in the morning Pakistani soldiers attacked mortar in Shahpur and Kerni sectors and attacked with small arms. A 6-year-old child has also been killed in Pakistan's action. 9 local people have been injured in Poonch. They are being treated at the local hospital.
The army said that the Pakistani army fired at the Naushera Sector of Rajouri without any provocation. They used to put together many mortars and used small arms to target Indian check posts.
There is a huge tension between the two after the terrorist attack on the convoy of Central Reserve Police Force on February 14 in Pulwama, Jammu and Kashmir.
After the surgical strike, Pakistan is constantly firing on the border. India also warned Pakistan that if they targeted the residential areas, they would have to face the consequences. But Pakistan is still firing in entire border areas including Poonch.