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This is a crucial phase to turn the tide: Cong chief Kharge

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New Delhi, May 13 (IANS) As voting for the 96 Lok Sabha constituencies in the fourth phase of general elections was underway on Monday, Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge said this was a crucial phase to turn the tide in favour of the INDIA bloc’s win.

“This is a crucial phase to turn the tide completely in favour of NYAY – Justice and make INDIA win. Do not get deterred by the diversionary tactics of hateful speeches which divide the society,” said Kharge.

Addressing the voters through social media, he said, “I urge you to completely focus on our collective objective in protecting Democracy and safeguarding the basis of our existence – The Constitution of India.”

The Congress chief said, “In the first three phases of the Lok Sabha elections, you have shown your might by voting for Democracy and striving to save the Constitution from autocratic forces. Today, 96 Lok Sabha constituencies in 10 States/UTs are going to vote. Assembly elections for Andhra Pradesh and the first phase of Odisha Assembly elections would also be underway.”

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“This is a crucial phase to turn the tide completely in favour of Justice and make INDIA win,” he added.

He also urged the voters to consider the INDIA bloc’s objectives of Nyay.

“These are paramount in our fight to rekindle the spirit of freedom, justice, equality, liberty and fraternity in our beloved INDIA. I warmly welcome the first time voters who are the catalyst for change. Do vote and encourage your family, friends and neighbours to vote in large numbers, Kharge added.

–IANS

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AIADMK raps TN govt for not resuming free laptops scheme for govt school students

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Chennai, May 26 (IANS) AIADMK General Secretary and former Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami (EPS) on Sunday questioned Tamil Nadu’s DMK government for not resuming the scheme to provide free laptops to government school students in the state.

In a statement, he said it was highly condemnable that the state government was not making any announcement regarding free laptops for state government school students even when only a few days were left for schools to reopen.

Noting that the scheme of free laptops to government school children was introduced during the previous AIADMK government, Palaniswami said that it was meant to increase the quality of education of the students.

He asked Chief Minister M.K. Stalin whether he would resume the free laptop scheme which was stopped after the DMK government assumed office in the state.

In another statement, Palaniswami, who is also the Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly, questioned the Tamil Nadu State Electricity Board beginning the process of allowing only one electricity connection in the name of the house owner.

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He said that if the house owner stayed in one portion of the house and had a tenant in another portion, 100 free units of power would be provided. However, if the tenant leaves and the house owner has two electricity connections, one will be disconnected and for reconnection when a new tenant comes, the house owner has to apply afresh for a new connection, he said. This would lead to the house owner spending more, he added.

He said that during the AIADMK government, 100 units of power were provided free for both connections and called upon the DMK government to maintain the status quo.

–IANS

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Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple priest backs PM Modi's divine assertion

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Thiruvananthapuram, May 26 (IANS) As Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s assertion that he’s not merely a biological entity but divinely sent stirs a significant public discourse, the priest of the Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple has now voiced support for the PM’s statement.

Going even further, Pushpanjali Swami Parameswara Brahmananda suggested that PM Modi existed contemporaneously with Lord Krishna and played a role in governance during that era.

Swami Parameswara Brahmananda is the highest spiritual authority of Sree Padmanabha Swamy temple.

Sree Padmanabha Swamy temple is among the richest Hindu temple in the world with assets worth Rs 1,20,000 crore.

Pushpanjali Swami Parameswara Brahmananda’s fresh remarks came while responding to PM Modi’s recent statement that he was convinced that God had sent him and that the energy he had was bestowed upon him by God.

“PM Modi is a contemporary of Lord Krishna. This is his new birth to complete the unfinished work in his previous birth,” Swami Parameswara Brahmanada told IANS.

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He also said that India would emerge as a superpower and there was nothing wrong with the statement of the Prime Minister.

Swami Parameswara Brahmananda in an article in a historical book on the Pournamikkavu temple here mentioned that PM Modi was a contemporary of Lord Krishna.

–IANS

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BRS, BJP running false propaganda on paddy procurement: Telangana minister

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Hyderabad, May 26 (IANS) Telangana Minister for Civil Supplies Uttam Kumar Reddy on Sunday alleged that BRS and BJP are running false propaganda against the government on the issue of paddy procurement from farmers.

He said the opposition parties are spreading lies and misinformation against the Congress government.

Addressing a press conference, he claimed that there is no truth in the corruption allegations and criticism by the opposition parties.

He said that the Congress will not remain silent over irresponsible allegations against the government.

The Congress leader said BRS working president K. T. Rama Rao and BJP floor leader in Assembly Maheshwar Reddy speak whatever they want

Reacting strongly to Rama Rao’s allegations, the minister said levelling baseless allegations against an honest person like him is highly improper.

Earlier, the BRS leader had claimed Rs.1,000 crore scam in procurement of paddy and fine variety rice by the government.

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Uttam Kumar Reddy clarified that the government has not procured even one grain of fine-variety rice. If somebody is ready to sell fine rice at Rs 42 per kg, the government will immediately procure it, he said on Rama Rao’s allegations.

If the conditions laid down in the tenders are accepted, the government will procure any quantity of paddy, he added.

He alleged that BRS and BJP are speaking on behalf of defaulter ricer millers.

He said on one hand the opposition parties are criticising the government for not taking action against ricer millers, while on the other they are saying that millers are being put to difficulties.

Slamming BJP leader Maheshwar Reddy, Uttam Kumar Reddy alleged that he bought the floor leader’s post by sending money to Delhi.

He said that Maheshwar Reddy is trying to overtake Kishan Reddy. He wants to move ahead in the party.

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Under the BRS government, the fine variety of paddy was fetched at Rs1,700 per quintal but now farmers are getting Rs 2,400. He claimed that after Congress came to power, farmers earned an additional income of Rs 1,100 crore.

Stating that not even one rupee was spent on fine variety rice, Uttam Kumar Reddy said a tender was called for procurement of fine rice but was later cancelled.

He said the previous government had pushed the Civil Supplies Department into Rs 58,000 crore debts. Under the BRS rule, the Civil Supplies Corporation had raised the debts of Rs 11,000 crore

Uttam Kumar Reddy claimed that compared to the previous government, the Congress government started paddy procurement early.

“The government took a revolutionary step to procure wet paddy at MSP. Ours is the only government which procured paddy soaked in unseasonal rains,” he said.

–IANS

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Bring change in country by electing Cong-INDIA govt, says Priyanka Gandhi in Chandigarh

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Chandigarh, May 26 (IANS) Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi on Sunday appealed to the electorates in Chandigarh to bring change in the country and also in their lives by electing the Congress-INDIA government.

Addressing a public rally in support of INDIA bloc candidate Manish Tewari here, Priyanka Gandhi, countered the BJP’s charges that the Congress is anti-Hindu, saying the philosophy of the Congress is based on the teachings of the Bhagwadgita which teaches truth, love, harmony and non-violence.

She pointed out how Prime Minister Narendra Modi has only exploited the religious sentiments of people coupled with fake promises like depositing Rs 15 lakh in every Indian’s bank account, or providing two crore jobs every year and doubling the income of farmers.

Alleging that PM Modi has lowered the dignity of the office of the Prime Minister, she said no Prime Minister, irrespective of which party he or she belonged to, had talked the way PM Modi is talking.

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She said, despite being in Opposition, leaders like her felt ashamed of what PM Modi is saying. “After all he is everybody’s Prime Minister,” she told a large crowd.

The Congress General Secretary said PM Modi always avoids talking about the pressing issues like unemployment, inflation and farmers’ plight.

She pointed out that unemployment is at its highest in the last 45 years with 70 crore jobless people in the country.

She referred to various guarantees of the Congress. She said every poor family would receive Rs 8,500 every month. She also announced that every fresh graduate will get a one-year apprenticeship with an assured income of Rs 1 lakh for that period.

–IANS

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Agnipath scheme guarantees 100 per cent employment, says Anurag Thakur

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Hamirpur (Himachal Pradesh), May 26 (IANS) Targeting Congress for “misleading” the country’s youth by spreading false propaganda on the Agnipath scheme, Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting and Youth and Sports Anurag Thakur said on Sunday that the game-changing initiative of Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government guarantees 100 per cent employment.

“Every Congress leader is misleading the youth by lying about the scheme which guarantees 100 per cent employment,” Anurag Thakur said while campaigning in Hamirpur constituency which goes to polls on June 1.

Asserting that the scheme gives India’s youth an opportunity to serve the country by joining the Armed Forces, Thakur mentioned that it is a win-win situation for all as youngsters exiting after four years will not only get a service fund package but also jobs in various Public Sector Undertakings.

“All BJP-ruled state governments have provided 10-20 per cent reservation in the state police for these young comrades. Reservations has also been made in the Central government’s paramilitary forces. Not only that, they have been given many concessions in selection. Congress should stop misleading the youth and should not play with their future,” the Union Minister said.

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Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has claimed that the Agnipath scheme has been brought against the will of armed forces and if the INDIA bloc is voted to power, the party will discard it immediately.

“Rahul Gandhi will go to Italy or Bangkok but the Agniveers will continue to serve the country. It is PM Modi who named islands after 21 Param Vir Chakra awardees, cleared One Rank-One Pension scheme, gave the latest arms and ammunition to our forces, got Rafale fighters, built INS Vikrant and Brahmos missiles… What did the Congress do for 40 years except for encouraging corruption and getting kickbacks in defence deals?” the BJP leader questioned.

–IANS

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