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Shivpal downplays controversy over Budaun seat

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Lucknow, April 9 (IANS) “The controversy is being unnecessarily generated by our rivals. It is for the party and the people to decide who will contest the Budaun seat. I have been named as a candidate and as long as the party does not change its mind, I am contesting the seat,” said senior Samajwadi Party (SP) leader Shivpal Singh Yadav.

Upset over reports of a ‘tussle’ between him and his son Aditya Yadav over the Budaun seat, Shivpal told IANS on Tuesday, “For us, every seat is a family seat – whether it is Budaun, Azamgarh, Mainpuri or Kannauj. There is no tussle whatsoever. Some people wanted Aditya to contest from Budaun and sent a letter to the party president which triggered off speculations.”

Shivpal Yadav vehemently denied talks that Budaun was no longer ‘safe’ for the family after senior leaders like former MP Saleem Sherwani and former MLA Abid Raza quit the party.

“I have excellent personal relations with both of them and I am confident of their support. Neither of them is contesting the elections and they will be with us,” he said.

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About reports that SP President Akhilesh Yadav was not keen on campaigning for Shivpal in Budaun, the senior leader said, “We have planned at least two public meetings for him. One will be in Budaun and the other in Gunnaur. The schedule of the two meetings will be decided by the national president in line with his other engagements.”

He further said that though he will be contesting the Lok Sabha polls for the second time, he had been closely and actively associated with the preparations since 1996 when ‘Netaji’ (Mulayam Singh Yadav) contested his first parliamentary polls from Mainpuri.

“I contested the 2019 Lok Sabha polls under extremely odd conditions — the family feud was at its peak — as Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party-Lohia (PSP-L) president from Firozabad. This pitch is not new to me. I have seen all 80 Lok Sabha seats and 403 assembly seats individually and personally,” he explained.

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Reminiscing about his elder brother Mulayam, Shivpal said. This will be the first Lok Sabha elections when ‘Netaji’ will not be around. His presence is being missed by all — the family, party workers and the people. However, this has also strengthened our resolve to battle against divisive forces and uphold his values and ideology.

Asked to comment on the controversy over SP President Akhilesh Yadav’s visit to the family of Mukhtar Ansari who died last month, Shivpal said, “Mukhtar died under suspicious circumstances. He belongs to an illustrious family and we have known them for years. What is wrong in offering condolences to the family? It is shameful how some people do not even know how to respect the dead.”

–IANS

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IndiGo flight receives bomb threat at Delhi airport

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New Delhi, May 28 (IANS) An IndiGo flight bound for Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh received a bomb threat at Delhi airport on Tuesday morning, prompting authorities to declare an emergency, police said.

According to airline officials, IndiGo flight 6E2211 operating from Delhi to Varanasi had received a specific bomb threat at the airport. The threat call was received at around 5.40 a.m., said officials.

“All necessary protocols were followed and the aircraft was taken to a remote bay as per guidelines by airport security agencies. All passengers were safely evacuated via the emergency exits,” said an airline official.

“The flight is currently undergoing inspection. Post completion of all security checks, the aircraft will be positioned back in the terminal area,” the spokesperson added.

More details are awaited.

–IANS

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Mamata Banerjee not to attend INDIA bloc's June 1 meeting

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Kolkata, May 27 (IANS) West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday announced that she will not be able to attend the crucial meeting of the opposition INDIA bloc, convened by Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge, in New Delhi on June 1.

Banerjee, who is also the Trinamool Congress chief, cited two reasons behind her inability to attend the meeting.

“First of all, on June 1, there will be the final and seventh phase of Lok Sabha polls for nine constituencies in West Bengal. Secondly, because of Cyclone Remal, many people have been displaced and are currently residing in temporary shelters. I will have to supervise that as well. These two factors are important for me and hence I will be staying back on June 1,” she said while addressing an election meeting in Kolkata Uttar Lok Sabha constituency for party candidate and sitting MP Sudip Bandopadhyay.

However, Banerjee did not make it clear whether she would send a representative for the meeting.

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In her speech at the election meeting, she again launched a scathing attack against both the Congress and the CPI-M.

“These two parties have the only aim in West Bengal. That is to benefit the BJP by dividing the opposition votes,” she claimed.

–IANS

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TN: Police ‘requests’ tribals to surrender unlicensed country-made guns voluntarily

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Chennai, May 27 (IANS) Tirupattur Police in Tamil Nadu has “requested” the tribals of Jawadhu Hills to surrender their country-made guns voluntarily and in return get a general amnesty.

Police have communicated to the village heads of Jawadhu Hills to surrender the guns at a common place like temples so that the identity of those in procession of the guns is not revealed.

The Tirupattur Superintendent of Police Albert John told IANS that recently during a routine vehicle checkup, police seized some unlicensed guns leading to the convening of a meeting of the village elders and asking them to surrender these guns.

Police said that there are 177 licensed guns in the district which were surrendered in the local police stations in the district due to the Lok Sabha elections.

The natives of Pudur Nadu, Nellivasal Nadu and Pungampattu Nadu in Jawadhu Hills have had a tradition of keeping illegal arms since pre-independence days. This was for hunting as also for protecting themselves against theft and to deliver the hill and forest produce to the local markets and safely return back to the villages.

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Police said that there is no requirement for such illegal and unlicensed country-made guns for the villagers and hence “requested” them to surrender these unlicensed guns.

–IANS

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Patna law student dies after brutal assault by over dozen masked men

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Patna May 27 (IANS) A law student in Patna died after he was brutally beaten up by over a dozen masked assailants outside his examination centre on Monday evening, police said.

The deceased was identified as Harsh Raj, a student of BN College.

He had gone to a law college in the Sultanganj area for an exam and was intercepted by the assailants just outside the examination centre when he came out. The assailants fled from the scene after thrashing him.

The victim was admitted to the Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH) where he succumbed due to multiple injuries.

Preliminary investigation revealed that the victim was involved in a heated exchange of words with some persons a few days ago, and this could be the reason for the deadly attack. However, the police said they are investigating the matter.

“A student named Harsh Raj, who had gone for an exam in a law college located in the Sultanganj police station area, was lynched by more than one dozen masked criminals. The body has been sent to the PMCH for post-mortem. The matter is being investigated. Nearby CCTV footage is being examined,” ASP, Patna City, Sharat R.S. said.

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Harsh Raj was a resident of Vaishali and was doing his graduation in the state capital.

–IANS

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Number of heatstroke patients rise to 3,622 in Rajasthan

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Jaipur, May 28 (IANS) The number of heatstroke patients in Rajasthan increased from 2809 to 3622 on Monday as the state continued to witness intense heatwave conditions. The death toll, however, remained unchanged at one, health officials confirmed.

On Monday, Phalodi was the hottest in the state at 49.4 degrees Celsius — 6.3 degrees above normal — while Jaipur recorded a maximum temperature of 46.4 degrees Celsius — 0.8 degrees higher than Sunday.

Kota registered a maximum temperature of 48.2 degrees Celsius and a minimum temperature of 36 degrees Celsius — 5 degrees above normal.

Almost all cities in the state registered a temperature of over 45 degrees Celsius. Ajmer recorded a maximum temperature of 46.3 degrees Celsius, Bhilwara (47.4), Bharatpur (48.2), Alwar (46.2), Pilani (48.5), Chittorgarh (47), Barmer (49.3), Jaisalmer (48.7), Jodhpur (47.4), Bikaner (48.2), Churu (48), Sri Ganganagar (48.3), and Dholpur recorded a maximum temperature of 48.1 degrees Celsius.

Meteorological Department officials said that there will be no respite from soaring mercury on Tuesday in the state.

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There is a strong possibility that the ongoing intense heatwave conditions will continue for the next 2-3 days. However, the temperature will start coming down from May 29 onwards and in the first week of June, the maximum temperature will stay normal, said R.S. Sharma, Director, India Meteorological Department, Jaipur.

–IANS

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