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Mandir to end Hindu-Muslim rifts, says Mohan Bhagwat

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New Delhi: Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat said that the Sangh had reservations over the word “minority” as it believes in “sab apne hain” (everyone is part of the family), and the word was coined by the British, as he appealed to Muslims to get to know the Sangh better by visiting it, and asserted that Muslims feel protected in areas where there are Sangh shakhayen (daily meetings) nearby. At the same time, Bhagwat also addressed the contentious issue of the construction of the Ram Mandir at the disputed site in Ayodhya as he pitched for early completion of the temple and said Lord Ram was not just a god for the majority of Indians but was also an “Imam-e-Hind” for many, and a temple at the site would resolve differences between Hindus and Muslims.
Taking up questions on the final day of his three-day lectures on the “Future of Bharat: An RSS perspective”, Bhagwat replied to questions on a variety issues, including the Ram Mandir, Article 370 and 377, reservations, cow vigilantism, religious conversion, population control and Hindutva.
Replying to a query on construction of the Ram Mandir and whether the Central government should bring in an ordinance for it or if there should be a national discourse, Bhagwat said that he was neither in the government nor in the Ram Mandir Nyas (trust) but was a “swayamsevak”, (volunteer) and the “sarsanghachalak” (RSS chief), and someone who had participated in the Ram Mandir movement, he wants an early completeion of a grand temple.
“Lord Ram is not only a god for the majority of this country but is also the protector of this country’s traditions and its dignity and is also an Imam-e-Hind for many… all sections of Indian society have faith in him … We are not talking about any Ram Mandir as many such mandirs were demolished… we are talking about the birthplace of Lord Ram and only a mandir should come up there,” asserted Bhagwat, as he said if the temple was built, it would resolve contentious issues between Hindus and Muslims. He also said if the issue is resolved through a consensus, it would also stop many from pointing fingers at Muslims. Bhagwat also said if the issue was considered from the point of view of “rashtrahit” (national interest), it would have been resolved years ago, but the issue remains unresolved as it turned into a political issue.
Bhagwat said “Hinduism” cannot define “Hindutva” as an “ism” confines, but “Hindutva” is a process and the only ideology which can maintain a balance between the different sects and ideologies which defines the ideology of India. He said the ideology of the country was taking eveyrone along, as diversity doesn’t mean differences and “Hindutva” believes in oneness, not through theorisation but through practice.
On the issue of why the RSS opposes religious conversions, Bhagwat said if every religion and sect were the same, why was there is a need for conversion as it was for an individual to decide which sect or religon will bring him or her closer to the God or spiritualism. “God is not sold in the market or can be forced upon anyone because if there is any enticement or deception invloved, then such a process is not aimed at attaining spiritualism or humanity, but something else,” said the RSS supremo.
The RSS chief also reiterated the Sangh Parivar’s position on Articles 370 and 35A of the Constitution, which give a special status to Jammu and Kashmir, and said it does not accept both. Responding to a question, Mr Bhagwat said there was no anger against Hindutva and its acceptance was increasing across the world, but in India there seems to be some anger but not because of Hindutva but because of wrong examples put across in its name for the past few centuries.


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National

JD(S) will support Congress in stopping BJP from coming back to power: Deve Gowda

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New Delhi:The former prime minister said that the results of Lok Sabha poll will be declared on May 23 and a clear picture will emerge before the entire country on that day.
Former prime minister and JD(S) chief HD Deve Gowda on Saturday said that his party is standing firmly with Congress and he will not like to speak more this matter. Gowda said that the results of Lok Sabha poll will be declared on May 23 and a clear picture will emerge before the entire country on that day.
“We are with Congress, I don’t want to speak anything more. On 23rd results will come, clear picture will be known to the entire country & what further development takes place,” the JD(S) chief was quoted as saying by ANI.
JD(S) Chief and Former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda: We are with Congress, I don’t want to speak anything more. On 23rd results will come, clear picture will be known to the entire country & what further development takes place. pic.twitter.com/sxbgQXwV2D
The former prime minister made the remarks after offering prayers at Lord Venkateshwara temple on the occasion of his birthday. Gowda was accompanied by his family members, including Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy. The JD(S) supremo stressed that since his party is the coalition partner of the Congress in Karnataka and they have contested the Lok Sabha poll in alliance, his party would support the Congress in order to keep BJP away from power.
On the news that UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi had called a meeting of non-NDA party leaders on May 23, Gowda remarked that he has not received any invite from Sonia Gandhi yet but he would be happy to attend the meeting. He added that by calling the meeting, Sonia Gnadhi is showing her “political maturity”.
The JD(S) chief also said that it is impossible for regional parties to form a government at the Centre without Congress’ support. He added that many leaders want to become the PM and it is necessary that different parties need a consensus over the prime minister’s name.
Meanwhile, talking to media, Karnataka CM HD Kumaraswsamy said that Congress and JD(S) alliance has performed well in the Lok Sabha election and the alliance would win at least 18-19 Lok Sabha seats out of total 28 from Karnataka. He added that JD(S)’ support to Congress will continue both at state as well as national level.

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Akhilesh tears into PM Modi’s press conference, calls it last episode of ‘Mann ki Baat’ on TV

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NEW DELHI: Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav took a dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s maiden press conference, saying the media interaction looked “like last episode of ‘Mann ki Baat’ of the prime minister and the only difference was it was aired on TV and not on radio.
“Development is asking have you seen the first press conference of Pradhan ji. Seems like the last episode of Mann ki Baat has been aired on TV instead of radio. Media persons did not get to ask their questions and the disciplined soldiers remained silent,” tweeted the SP chief.
Loktantrik Janata Dal party chief Sharad Yadav also hit out at PM Modi, saying the press conference was the farewell press conference of the BJP. Yadav added that the prime minister remained at the helm of affairs for five years and yet he is not able to face media.
Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said that PM Modi’s body language at the press conference showed that he had accepted defeat in Lok Sabha poll. “Today, the whole country saw Modi ji`s body language at the press conference. The world has seen that Modi ji has accepted defeat and he presented himself in the same way in front of the media. He did not answer any question. No one can ask him a question,” tweeted Gehlot.

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110 women candidates contesting Lok Sabha election declared criminal cases, 255 are crorepatis: ADR

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Mumbai :One hundred and ten women candidates contesting the 2019 Lok Sabha election have declared criminal cases against themselves including those relating to murder and rape among other serious offences.
The data is based on a report by the National Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) in which the affidavits of 716 out of 724 women candidates were analysed. The affidavits of eight women candidates were not analysed due to unclear reports.
As per the report, 110 women candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves, 78 have declared serious criminal cases including cases related to rape, murder, attempt to murder, crimes against women and two are convicted criminals.
Four women candidates have declared cases related to murder (IPC Section 302) while 16 have declared cases of attempt to murder (IPC Section-307).
Fourteen women candidates have declared cases related to crimes against women – causing miscarriage without a woman’s consent (IPC Section-313), assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty (IPC Section-354) and word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman (IPC Section-509).
Names of seven women candidates have come up in cases related to hate speech.
Partywise, 14 out of 54 women candidates are from Congress, 18 out of 53 are from Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), two out of 24 are from Bahujan Samajwadi Party, six out of 23 are from Trinamool Congress (TMC). 22 out of 222 Independent women candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits.
Ten women candidates with serious criminal cases belong to the Congress party, 13 are from BJP, 2 from BSP, 4 out of 23 are from TMC and 21 are Independent women candidates.
Out of the 716 women candidates analysed, 255 are crorepatis. The average assets per women candidate contesting in the Lok Sabha election is Rs 5.63 crore.
BJP’s Hema Malini, DA Sathya Prabha from TDP and Harsimrat Kaur Badal from SAD are the three richest women candidates contesting in the Lok Sabha election.
Education details of women candidates: 232 of them have declared their educational qualification to be between 5th pass and 12th pass, 396 have declared having an educational qualification of graduate and above. 37 women candidates have declared themselves to be just literate and 26 women candidates are illiterates. Two candidates have not given their educational qualification details.
Age details of women candidates: 531 have declared their age to be between 25 and 50 years, 180 have declared their age to be between 51 and 80 years and one candidate has declared she is more than 80-years-old. While three women candidates have not disclosed their age details and one has declared her age to be below 25 years.

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