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Congress to replicate work done by its govt in Karnataka across India: Rahul Gandhi

Rahul Gandhi, a prominent leader of the Congress party, declared on Wednesday that the party has upheld its major pre-election commitments to the people of Karnataka.



Congress to replicate work done by its govt in Karnataka across India: Rahul Gandhi
Rahul Gandhi: (Photo: @INCIndia)

Mysuru: Rahul Gandhi, a prominent leader of the Congress party, declared on Wednesday that the party has upheld its major pre-election commitments to the people of Karnataka. He further asserted that the accomplishments of the Siddaramaiah-led government would serve as a model to be replicated across the entire nation.

In a bid to fulfill another critical pre-election pledge, the Congress government in Karnataka introduced the ‘Gruha Lakshmi’ initiative on Wednesday. This initiative aims to provide monthly financial assistance of Rs 2,000 to approximately 1.1 crore women who head their households.

The launch of the ‘Gruha Lakshmi’ program took place at a public event held on the Maharaja College grounds and was attended by tens of thousands of individuals. AICC President M Mallikarjun Kharge, Rahul Gandhi, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, and Deputy Chief Minister D K Shivakumar were all present for the launch.

Gandhi, addressing the crowd, remarked, “We have upheld our commitments. We never make false promises. The work we have accomplished in Karnataka will be emulated throughout India.”

The ‘Gruha Lakshmi’ initiative, unveiled with great enthusiasm, is one of the five pre-election ‘guarantees’ of the Congress party, which wrested power from the BJP in the May Assembly elections.

Gandhi described the Congress party’s five guarantees as more than just schemes; they represent a governance model. He characterized the ‘Gruha Lakshmi’ initiative as “the world’s largest cash transfer program,” with Rs 2,000 being directly deposited into the bank accounts of millions of women beneficiaries.

The Congress party had pledged to implement five ‘guarantees,’ including ‘Shakti,’ ‘Gruha Jyothi,’ ‘Annabhagya,’ ‘Gruha Lakshmi,’ and ‘Yuva Nidhi.’ Shakti offers free travel for women on government buses throughout Karnataka, while ‘Gruha Jyoti’ provides 200 units of free electricity each month.

The ‘Anna Bhagya’ scheme provides 10 kg of rice, while ‘Yuva Nidhi’ (Youth Fund) promises to offer Rs 3,000 and Rs 1,500 per month to unemployed graduates and diploma holders, respectively, who remain jobless even six months after completing their exams in the 2022-23 academic year.

Gandhi clarified, “With the exception of the ‘Yuva Nidhi’ initiative, the other four guarantees (Shakti, Gruha Lakshmi, Gruha Jyothi, and Anna Bhagya) are designed to benefit the women of the state. There is a thoughtful rationale behind these four guarantees.”

Drawing a parallel between Karnataka’s women and the roots of a tree, Gandhi remarked that if the roots are robust, the tree can withstand any storm.

He also noted that while undertaking a 600-km journey in Karnataka during his ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ last year, he observed that women were concerned about the rising prices in the country. These challenges faced by women motivated the Congress to introduce these guarantees.

Taking a swipe at the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre, Gandhi remarked that there is a current trend where the “government in Delhi” appears to primarily serve the interests of billionaires. He emphasized the Congress party’s belief that the government should work for the welfare of the underprivileged.

Kharge stated that no government in India has ever introduced such an extensive scheme, and many are eager to implement it in their respective states.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah had previously affirmed that the government had already implemented three of the five pre-election ‘guarantees’— ‘Shakti,’ ‘Gruha Jyothi,’ and ‘Annabhagya.’ He highlighted that ‘Gruha Lakshmi’ represents the fourth guarantee. The government had allocated Rs 17,500 crore for the ‘Gruha Lakshmi’ program in the current fiscal year, with plans to implement the ‘Yuva Nidhi’ scheme in December or January, as announced during the event.


Father of Ujjain Rape Suspect Calls for Son’s Execution

People who didn’t aid the raped, injured, and naked 12-year-old girl may face child sex abuse law charges, A senior officer of the state police said.



Father of Ujjain Rape Suspect Calls for Son's Execution
Photo: X(twitter)

Ujjain: The father of the man arrested in connection with the alleged rape of a 12-year-old girl in Ujjain on Friday has called for his son to receive the death penalty. Meanwhile, the local bar association has appealed to lawyers not to defend the accused in court. The victim, a 12-year-old girl, was discovered walking on the city streets in a wounded condition, desperately seeking assistance from passersby who unfortunately turned her away.

The injured girl is currently receiving treatment at the Government Maharaja Tukojirao Holkar Women’s Hospital in Indore, where she underwent a major surgical procedure on Wednesday. A senior state police official has indicated that individuals who failed to assist the young girl when she went from door to door seeking help after the assault, which left her naked and bleeding, could potentially face charges under child sexual abuse laws. Such individuals may be charged under the POCSO Act for failing to report or register the commission of a crime, according to an NDTV report.

Bharat Soni, an auto-rickshaw driver, was taken into custody in connection with the case on Thursday. His father expressed his deep shame over the incident, stating, “It is a disgraceful act. I have not visited the hospital to see him, nor will I go to the police station or court. My son has committed a crime, and he should face the ultimate punishment, which is hanging,” as he conveyed his sentiments to reporters. It should be noted that Soni sustained injuries while allegedly attempting to flee during the investigation, according to the police’s statement on Thursday.

The Congress party has criticized the BJP government in Madhya Pradesh, where assembly elections are scheduled by year-end. Congress spokesperson Supriya Shrinate alleged that the state’s law-and-order situation had significantly deteriorated under the leadership of Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.

“In Madhya Pradesh, being a Dalit, tribal, or woman has seemingly become a crime. The state ranks highest in cases of minor rape. During Chouhan’s 18-year tenure, there have been 58,000 reported rape cases and 68,000 reported kidnapping cases. Yet, the country’s prime minister, home minister, and all BJP leaders remain conspicuously silent,” Shrinate conveyed to reporters in Delhi.

The distressing incident, captured by a CCTV camera, depicts the 12-year-old girl, partially undressed and bleeding following the assault, desperately seeking assistance from neighbors who callously refused her aid. Furthermore, in a shocking display of heartlessness, one individual can be seen shooing her away as she approaches him for help.

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Mob’s Bid to Enter CM N Biren Singh’s House in Imphal East, Manipur

Protests and clashes escalate in Imphal’s Manipur following tragic youth deaths; curfew reinstated in two districts.



Mob's Bid to Enter CM N Biren Singh's House in Imphal East, Manipur

Imphal: Tensions flared in Manipur as an enraged crowd, numbering in the hundreds, gathered outside the private residence of Chief Minister N Biren Singh in the Heingang area of Imphal East. Security forces successfully prevented their attempt to breach the premises, according to PTI sources. Notably, the residence was unoccupied at the time of the incident.

Earlier, the district magistrate of Imphal East had announced a temporary relaxation of movement restrictions, allowing for a window between 5 am and 11 am on Friday for the entire district. However, this relaxation coincided with a fresh outbreak of violence in the Imphal Valley, stemming from the tragic deaths of two youths whose images had triggered widespread protests across the northeastern state.

The parents of the deceased youths had appealed to the authorities to locate their children’s remains, underscoring the importance of conducting their final rites with the dignity they deserved. Subsequently, protests erupted, mainly led by students, in various areas of the state capital, including Uripok, Yaiskul, Sagolband, and Tera. The clashes between protesters and security personnel prompted the use of tear gas shells to maintain order.

To impede the advance of security forces into residential areas, demonstrators obstructed roads with burning tires, boulders, and iron pipes. Additionally, an enraged mob vandalized the District Commissioner’s office and set two vehicles on fire. In a separate incident, a BJP office in Khongjam, Thoubal district, was also set ablaze, as reported by the police.

Subsequently, curfew was reinstated in both Imphal East and West districts as security forces grappled with the ongoing violent protests, which had resulted in injuries to 65 demonstrators since Tuesday. Police initiated a search operation to recover stolen firearms and apprehend those responsible for the disturbances.

The Manipur Police issued a statement asserting their commitment to taking stern action against individuals involved in criminal activities.

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Hyderabad’s Ganesh procession peacefully amid strong security

Peaceful Ganesh procession in Hyderabad amidst heavy rain, tight security; thousands participate.



Ganesh immersion procession was taken out peacefully in Hyderabad today.
Photo: @mrprincepavan7/Twitter:X

Hyderabad, a city steeped in tradition and cultural fervor, witnessed the peaceful conclusion of its grand Ganesh procession on Thursday, even as the immersion of idols continued in Hussain Sagar lake and numerous other water bodies across the city. This mammoth event unfolded without any untoward incidents, thanks to the vigilant security measures in place.

The procession commenced in the morning, with devotees flocking to the lakes for the immersion rituals, undeterred by the evening’s heavy rain showers.

Hussain Sagar lake, the epicenter of the festivities, saw a multitude of trucks carrying idols queued up for immersion, a spectacle expected to continue into Friday morning. To maintain order and safety, traffic restrictions in select areas of the city were extended for a second consecutive day.

The main procession, originating from Balapur on the city’s southern outskirts, culminated at Hussain Sagar in the afternoon, covering a distance of approximately 20 kilometers. Notably, this procession passed through the communally sensitive old city, where the police maintained a strong presence, especially near the historic Mecca Masjid near Charminar, to preempt any potential incidents.

Several subsidiary processions joined the main one, collectively forming one of the largest gatherings for immersion, rivaled only by Mumbai’s celebrations. To ensure security, an impressive array of measures was implemented, including the installation of 20,600 CCTV cameras and the deployment of five drone teams.

This year, the Ganesh immersion coincided with Milad-un-Nabi, a significant religious occasion. In a remarkable display of interfaith harmony, Muslim organizations postponed their Milad procession to Sunday, while Muslim youths distributed food and water to devotees near Charminar during the festivities.

The security apparatus was extensive, with over 40,000 police officers stationed across Hyderabad, Cyberabad, and Rachakonda police commissionerates, supplemented by personnel from neighboring districts. Additionally, 125 platoons of additional forces, the Rapid Action Force (RAF), and paramilitary units were on standby.

Key officials, including Director General of Police Anjani Kumar and Hyderabad Police Commissioner C. V. Anand, monitored the procession from the newly inaugurated war room at the Integrated Police Command Control Centre. Home Minister Mohammed Mehmood Ali and Animal Husbandry Minister T. Srinivas Yadav conducted an aerial survey of the event in a helicopter.

Authorities anticipate the immersion of around 70,000 idols in Hussain Sagar and other lakes, with approximately four lakh devotees participating in the festivities. The administration made extensive medical provisions, with 47 health camps and 15 hospitals on standby, along with 34 lakh drinking water packets available at 122 stalls for devotees’ convenience.

For the immersion of larger idols, 369 cranes, including 244 mobile cranes, were arranged. Notably, the iconic Khairatabad Ganesh, standing at a towering 63 feet, was immersed in Hussain Sagar around noon. For the second consecutive year, this idol was crafted from clay, aligning with the directive to avoid the use of Plaster of Paris (PoP) idols.

The ban on PoP idols continued for the third consecutive year, following a High Court ruling. The court mandated that PoP idols be immersed only in the baby ponds created by the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC), which had thoughtfully set up 74 such ponds for this purpose.

In preparation for Hussain Sagar’s immersion, authorities deployed 36 cranes, three boats, and 100 swimmers, along with 3,000 sanitation workers, ready to address any contingency. The grand procession effectively brought the entire city to a standstill, necessitating the closure of liquor shops and bars within the limits of all three police commissionerates.

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