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Won’t beg Congress for more seats: BSP chief Mayawati

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LUCKNOW: Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati launched a verbal attack on the Congress yet again on Tuesday asserting that she will not beg for seats to be in an alliance. She said that she only asked for a respectable number of seats for the BSP and added that till the time there is no respectable division of seats, her party will continue to fight the polls alone.
She also attacked the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) claiming that both the saffron party as well as the Congress always try to weaken the BSP.
Her statement comes days after she snubbed Congress and joined hands with Ajit Jogi’s JCC for Chhattisgarh polls and announced that the BSP will go solo in the Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh assembly elections.
While making the announcement, she had claimed that the Congress is getting arrogant. “They (Congress) are getting arrogant and are under the misconception that they can defeat BJP on their own but the ground reality is that people haven’t forgiven Congress party for their mistakes and corruption. They don’t seem to be ready to rectify themselves,” she said.
Although she had spoken well about Congress chief Rahul Gandhi and his mother UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, she had hit out at other party leaders who she claimed had been against the alliance. “I feel that Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi’s intentions for Congress-BSP alliance are honest. However, some Congress leaders are sabotaging this. Congress leaders like Digvijaya Singh do not wish for a Congress-BSP alliance. They are afraid of agencies like ED, CBI,” she said.
After Mayawati shrugged Congress away, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav had also warned the party of consequences if they are not given a fair share of seats.
“Congress has made us wait for long. We will hold talks with BSP,” Akhilesh Yadav said on Saturday when he was asked about a possible alliance between the bua-bhatija of Uttar Pradesh.
Taking a cue from Mayawati’s announcement, Akhilesh had pressed upon the Congress to give importance to the smaller political parties. “I am saying that the Congress should show its large-heartedness, and it should contest elections by taking along all the political parties who have similar thoughts and ideology. If there is any delay, then there is a possibility that other parties may declare their candidates. After this, they (Congress) will be levelling allegations that they colluded with the BJP,” Akhilesh said in what could be viewed as a warning to the Congress.


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National

Ayodhya on high alert following intelligence inputs

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Ayodhya: Amid VIP movements, Ayodhya has been put on high alert soon after intelligence inputs indicated a possible terror attack in the city.

“We have put more force into action. The force has been alerted. Also, intelligence officials in the civil dress have come here. They are checking all hotels, restaurants and railway stations. The police force is vigilant and keeping a track of all the movements,” Anil Kumar Sisodia, Superintendent of Police City, told ANI.

This comes ahead of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray’s visit to Ayodhya on Sunday along with his party MPs.

 

According to reports, the security has also been heightened keeping in mind the hearing on 2005 Ram Janmabhoomi attack on June 18.

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Seven died while cleaning hotel sewer in Vadodara

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Vadodara: Seven persons, including four sanitation workers, died due to asphyxiation on Saturday while cleaning sewer of a hotel in Gujarat’s Vadodara district, officials said.

The incident happened at a hotel in Fartikui village in Dabhoi tehsil, about 30 km from Vadodara city. Three employees of the hotel were also among those killed.

“When one sanitation worker failed to come out of the manhole, others went inside. All of them died due to asphyxiation,” district collector Kiran Zaveri told PTI.

 
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Manmohan retires from Rajya Sabha

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New Delhi: For the first time in 28 years, former prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh’s name ceased to be part of the list of members of the Rajya Sabha on its Web site, and was included in the list of former members of Parliament.

With the Congress lacking the numbers in the Assam legislature to ensure his re-election, 86-year-old Dr Singh retired from the Rajya Sabha.

Dr Singh, then finance minister in the P V Narasimha Rao government, had debuted in the House on October 1, 1991, from Assam and represented the state for five consecutive terms. He was the leader of the House during his 10 years as PM, and leader of the Opposition from 1998 to 2004.The former PM would now need to wait for the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, an ally of the Congress, to send him to the Rajya Sabha next month or until the next biennial elections in the Upper House in April 2020 when 54 MPs retire.

 

Five Rajya Sabha members from Tamil Nadu retire in July. The DMK, along with its allies, has the strength in the state legislature to get at least three elected to the Rajya Sabha. It has promised one seat to MDMK chief Vaiko.

However, sources said the DMK and the Congress have not had any discussions on the issue.

The Congress could also hope to send Dr Singh to the Upper House from Gujarat if elections to fill the two vacancies from the state take place together.

The vacancies are on account of two Bharatiya Janata Party Rajya Sabha members from Gujarat, Amit Anilchandra Shah and Smriti Zubin Irani, being elected to the Lok Sabha. Shah has debuted in the Lok Sabha from Gandhinagar while Irani is the Lok Sabha member from Amethi in Uttar Pradesh.

The Congress’s numbers in the Gujarat assembly would ensure the party wins one of the two seats, the other going to the BJP, if elections to the two seats are held jointly.

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