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Nobody can stop BJP from carrying out ‘rath yatras’ in Bengal: Shah

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New Delhi: A day after being denied permission to take out three “rath yatras” in West Bengal, BJP chief Amit Shah said that the Mamata Banerjee-led ruling TMC is scared of the saffron party’s growing popularity and accused Didi of “throttling” democracy in the state by denying permission for its road shows.

Declaring that the BJP is in no mood to change its plans, Mr Shah said, “We will definitely carry out all ‘yatras’, nobody can stop us. The BJP is committed to change in West Bengal. The ‘yatras’ have not been cancelled, just postponed.”

 

Hitting out at Ms Banerjee, Mr Shah said, “She knows these yatras will lay the foundation for change. That is why she is trying to stop them… The way Mamata Banerjee is using her government to trample upon democratic norms is very undemocratic and is throttling democracy.”

Shah’s attack on the TMC came soon after the Calcutta high court on Friday rapped the state government for not responding to BJP letters seeking permission for its rallies.

The division bench of the high court also directed top state officials to take a decision on the BJP’s “rath yatras” by December 14.

“Mamata didi’s attempts to deny the BJP its legitimate right to undertake political campaign in the state to expose TMC’s misgovernance has been thwarted by the court, which has asked Bengal administration to cooperate. Big win for democracy! BJP will soon set out on its ‘Gantantra Bachao Yatra’,” tweeted Mr Shah.

The BJP had to postpone three “rath yatras” in the state due to the Mamata Banerjee government refusing permission on grounds that it anticipated “communal tension” and a single bench of the high court on Thursday rejecting the saffron party’s challenge to the state government’s decision. Mr Shah was scheduled to flag off the “rath yatra” Coochbehar on Friday but changed his plan after the setback and moved the division bench of the high court against the single judge’s decision.

Addressing a press conference in Delhi, Mr Shah said on Friday that his party will follow the judicial process to get permission for “rath yatras”, said Mr Shah, announcing his plans to visit the state on Saturday.

Rejecting the state government’s claim that BJP’s events will lead to communal tension, Mr Shah said he visited the state 23 times as the party president and there had never been any communal flare-up and instead accused the ruling party and the state administration of playing appeasement politics in every sector.

Asserting that the people in the state are ready for change, Mr Shah said that the BJP will win a majority of seats in the Lok Sabha polls in the state. He claimed that his party’s expansion in West Bengal and win in over 7,000 seats in panchayat polls has rattled the TMC chief.

Ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, the BJP had planned to take out three “yatras” in the state where it has been trying hard to increase its support base and vote share. As per the earlier schedule, the first “yatra” was to be flagged off from Coochbehar on Friday, second Kakdwip in South 24 Parganas district on December 9 and the last on December 14 from Tarapith temple in Birbhum district.


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National

CJI recuses from hearing petition challenging interim CBI chief appointment

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New Delhi: Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi has recused himself from hearing a plea challenging M Nageswara Rao’s appointment as interim Director of the Central Bureau of Investigation.

Gogoi has sought transparency in the process of short-listing, selection and appointment of the CBI Director.

CJI Gogoi said he cannot hear plea as he would be part of the committee meeting to select the next CBI director.

 

.The plea will now be heard on January 24 by another bench.

The high-powered selection committee comprises the prime minister, the leader of the largest opposition party and the CJI or his nominee judge of the apex court.

A bench comprising CJI and Justice Sanjiv Khanna was hearing a PIL filed by NGO Common Cause challenging the appointment of Rao as interim CBI director.

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‘Not safe’: Mamata refuses to allow Amit Shah’s chopper to land in Malda, BJP cries foul

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KOLKATA: In yet another attempt by Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress government in West Bengal to stop Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) President Amit Shah from addressing rally in the state, the state government has denied permission for landing of Shah’s helicopter in Malda district.

The BJP president, who was recently treated for swine flu at AIIMS in New Delhi, is scheduled to address a rally in Malda on January 22. As per BJP’s plan, Shah will reach Kolkata and then take a helicopter from there to reach Malda where he will participate in a public rally with BJP workers from North Bengal.

The Malda district administration has informed the BJP that it is not possible to grant permission to land helicopters at Malda airport this week.

 

“As per report of the executive engineer, PWD (civil), Malda Division, up-gradation of work at Malda Airport is going on in full swing. A large quantity of fine sand, dust and GSB materials is lying all along the runway and also stacked all around the site,” Additional District Magistrate of Malda said in a letter to BJP.

The letter added that the ongoing construction work has also affected the maintenance of temporary helipad at the airport and it is not possible to grant permission to Shah’s chopper to land at Malda Airport.

Meanwhile, General Secretary of BJP Malda unit had written to Malda DM saying that West Bengal government is using Malda Airport for landing their helicopter every Wednesday and they are refusing permission to Shah’s helicopter.

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Centre threatening to impose Prez’s rule in Andhra: Chandrababu

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Amaravati: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Monday alleged that the Centre was threatening to impose President’s Rule in the state but, he said, nobody would be cowed down by such threats.

He claimed Prime Minister Narendra Modi was a “negative leader” under whose leadership the country was regressing. Addressing a teleconference with the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leaders, he attacked the prime minister and the BJP, saying they did nothing special for Andhra.

“They say one Union minister will come to the state every week. What good have they done for the state? On top of it, they are issuing threats that President’s Rule will be imposed in Andhra Pradesh. There is nobody here to be cowed down by their threats,” Naidu said.

 

Referring to the opposition parties’ rally in Kolkata two days ago, the TDP chief said it marked the beginning of the end of dictatorial rule and gave confidence to the people of the country. “We will hold a similar rally in Amaravati in which leaders of 22 parties will take part,” Naidu added.

The TDP chief lashed out at his Telangana counterpart K Chandrasekhar Rao and YSR Congress president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy, saying they were working under Modi’s direction.

The TRS and the YSRC were conspiring to create misgivings among the backward classes so that they are distanced from the TDP, he alleged. He said the backward communities should unitedly thwart such attempts.

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