In Narendra Dabholkar Murder, Accused Get Bail After CBI Fails To File Charges


Narendra Dabholkar was shot dead on August 20, 2013 in Maharashtra’s Pune (File Photo)

Pune: 

A Pune court on Friday granted bail to three accused in the killing of rationalist Narendra Dabholkar after the investigating agency, CBI failed to file its charges within the stipulated 90-day time-frame.

The Pune Sessions Court allowed bail to Amil Kale, Rajesh Bangera and Amit Digvekar — all of whom are also accused in the murders of Bengaluru journalist Gauri Lankesh, Kannada author MM Kalburgi and senior Communist leader Govind Pansare.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had taken Kale into custody last September for the Dabholkar killing after he was arrested in May by the Karnataka Police for the Lankesh murder.

However, they may not walk out free immediately in the case since they are in judicial custody in connection with the Lankesh and Pansare killings.

The development came after the accused, through their lawyer DR Chandel, filed a bail plea on Thursday seeking relief as the CBI had not sought extension of the time-limit to file supplementary charges against them under the stringent Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).

Incidentally, last Tuesday (December 11), the Supreme Court had said the CBI could investigate the four murders if “a common thread” is found in all the crimes, committed in Maharashtra and Karnataka.

While Narendra Dabholkar was shot dead on August 20, 2013 in Maharashtra’s Pune, Govind Pansare was shot on February 16, 2015 and died on February 20 in Maharashtra’s Kolhapur, MM Kalburgi was killed in Dharwad, Karnataka on August 30, 2015 and Lankesh was shot dead on September 5, 2017 in Karnataka capital Bengaluru.

Maharashtra Congress spokesman Sachin Sawant sharply criticised the developments, terming it as “the government’s will” that the three accused were granted bail in the Dabholkar case.

“It must be remembered that they were arrested by the efforts of the Karnataka Police Special Investigating Team… The CBI never managed to reach them, the CBI lawyer remained absent from the court for two days and now the agency has failed to even file the charge-sheet on time,” Mr Sawant said.





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Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Rahul Gandhi At Parliament Event After Poll Results, No Interaction


The two leaders were in Parliament for a tribute organised for the martyrs of Parliament attack. (File)

New Delhi: 

Two days after the Congress wrested three heartland states from the BJP, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress president Rahul Gandhi were a short distance from each other at a function in Parliament on Thursday but did not speak.

The two leaders were in Parliament for a tribute organised for the martyrs of the 2001 Parliament attack.

PM Modi was seen exchanging greetings with his predecessor and Congress leader Manmohan Singh.

Union minister Vijay Goel and Minister of State for Social Justice Minister Ramdas Athawale shook hands with the Congress president.

Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, BJP veteran L K Advani and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi were also present at the event.

They showered petals on portraits of the martyrs killed in the attack 17 years ago on this day.

On December 13, 2001, five heavily armed gunmen stormed the Parliament complex and opened fire. Five Delhi police personnel, a woman constable of the Central Reserve Police Fore, two members of the Parliament Watch and Ward Staff, a gardener and a cameraman lost their lives in the attack.

The Congress won the elections in Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh, all ruled by the BJP.  The votes were counted on Tuesday.





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For 2019, BJP Will Bet Bigger Than Ever On Narendra Modi: Foreign Media


BJP leaders expect to triumph by focusing the campaign on PM Modi versus opposition leader Rahul Gandhi

Rocked by regional election defeats and investor dismay at the surprise loss of the central bank chief, India’s ruling party is doubling down on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Four-and-a-half years after crushing the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty’s latest scion as he swept to victory, PM Modi still cultivates his image as a diligent, incorruptible son-of-a-tea-seller who strives to make India a prouder, more powerful country.

That enduring appeal is the Bharatiya Janata Party’s trump card going into national elections next year in the world’s biggest democracy. BJP leaders expect to triumph by focusing the campaign on PM Modi versus opposition leader Rahul Gandhi and by zeroing in on religious issues-including a controversial temple-that will consolidate India’s majority Hindu voters, said a senior BJP official who asked not to be named discussing strategy.

The 2019 election has suddenly opened up following the BJP’s loss of three large Indian states on Tuesday, a day after Reserve Bank of India Governor Urjit Patel shocked investors by quitting. The Hindu nationalist party’s senior leaders plan to regroup to chew over the poor performance, with the party bracing for the loss next year of a significant number of seats in the lower house of parliament, or Lok Sabha, the BJP official said.

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“We will undertake a serious review and introspection as we always do after every election,” BJP upper house lawmaker and party spokesman G.V.L. Narasimha Rao said in an interview. “Unlike in the rest of the country, the BJP fought in these elections under the leadership of our experienced chief ministers. The results will be highly favorable in the Lok Sabha polls as the focus will then be on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.”

That bet on PM Modi is still likely to pay off, despite the party’s loss of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh to the opposition Congress Party. With growing discontent among farmers and concerns about job growth cited as significant factors in the defeats, the BJP is blaming local leaders and arguing that PM Modi is insulated from the loss of support.

“The BJP remains the party to beat in 2019,” said Milan Vaishnav, South Asia program director at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. “In states where the BJP can turn the fight into a presidential contest, it still has a leg-up with Modi.”

India’s ballot, involving an electorate of more than 875 million, will determine the fate of PM Modi’s Hindu nationalist party and its agenda of reform mixed with polarizing religious rhetoric that often comes at the expense of the country’s roughly 170 million Muslims. A populist who stormed to power some two years before Donald Trump took the White House, PM Modi has sought to project a muscular, more assertive vision of India as a global power.

The unexpected regional electoral losses were magnified for the BJP by market turmoil caused by the sudden resignation of the central bank chief the previous night. While PM Modi praised Mr Patel’s tenure, the central banker’s departure followed an acrimonious spat with a Modi administration desperate to tap into the Reserve Bank of India’s capital reserves.

A re-energized opposition under Mr Gandhi, the Congress party president, means the national ballot due by May suddenly looks less certain. PM Modi has slipped in opinion polls as Mr Gandhi has gained, yet the prime minister remains India’s most popular politician. One survey put PM Modi as the premier of choice for 34 percent of voters compared to 24 percent for Mr Gandhi. That popularity is likely to help him to a second term, even if he returns without his single-party majority and needs to lean on coalition allies.

Part of PM Modi’s allure lies in his humble roots in a provincial town in Gujarat. After ruling for nearly 13 years as the chief minister of the industrialized, fast-growing western state, PM Modi’s bid for national office turned on his ability to tap into a deep-seated desire throughout India for economic development and a pledge to clamp down on corruption.

Over the course of his term in New Delhi, PM Modi’s government has been bold, if not reckless. They introduced a national goods and services tax, eliminated 86 percent of the country’s currency overnight-in a bid to unearth hidden wealth-and launched a campaign to improve India’s score on the World Bank’s ease of doing business ranking. At the outset, PM Modi enjoyed almost-unquestioning support, expanding the party’s power over a record 20 out of the country’s 29 state legislatures.

But recently, his golden touch has started to desert him. PM Modi’s brash approach to banning cash and a confusing new tax structure that bewildered business owners dented India’s growth. A thin electoral victory in southern Karnataka, home to the IT hub formerly called Bangalore, was overturned by a Congress alliance with a regional party. More recently, there have been enormous farmer protests in India’s biggest cities demanding the government guarantee crop prices and waive their debts.

With job creation flagging, his party’s overt reliance on Hindu nationalist flash points has blown up in its face. So-called cow vigilantes in the most populous state of Uttar Pradesh, which the BJP rules through a Hindu priest they appointed chief minister, recently formed a mob to protest the death of some cattle and ended up shooting and killing a police officer.

Party leaders believe his personal popularity remains intact despite this week’s losses. Mr Rao, the BJP lawmaker, pointed to the near identical vote share for his party and the Congress Party in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh as proof that defeat wasn’t indicative of a broader anti- PM Modi sentiment. Rather, unpopular local politicians bear the blame, he said.

Addressing the tremendous anger in rural India that led to the BJP losses will be a huge challenge, said one senior minister who asked not to be named discussing internal matters. The BJP is seen as a party that talks a lot but fails to deliver real change on the ground, the person added.

“People are angry with us,” said heavy industries minister Anant Geete from the Shiv Sena party, an ally of the BJP.

For the opposition Congress, this week’s victories show that a focus on farmer distress, unemployment and “a general sense of stagnation in the economy” resonates with Indian voters, according to senior party leader and former finance minster, Palaniappan Chidambaram. He doesn’t buy the BJP’s focus on a presidential-style campaign.

“People of a constituency or a state are not voting for a president of India,” Mr Chidambaram said. “They’re voting for a candidate in that constituency and they’re voting on how their lives have become either better or worse in the last five years.”





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Rahul Gandhi says PM Narendra Modi taught me what not to do


खास बातें

  1. राहुल ने कहा कि पीएम ने देश की धड़कन को सुनने से इनकार कर दिया
  2. राहुल गांधी ने कहा कि पीएम ने उन्हें सिखाया कि ‘क्या नहीं करना चाहिए’
  3. उन्होंने कांग्रेस के कार्यकर्ताओं की जमकर सराहना की

नई दिल्ली: कांग्रेस अध्यक्ष राहुल गांधी (Rahul Gandhi)ने पांचों राज्यों में हुए विधानसभा चुनावों में कांग्रेस के शानदार प्रर्दशन पर कहा कि प्रधानमंत्री नरेंद्र मोदी (PM Narendra Modi) ने उन्हें सिखाया कि ‘क्या नहीं करना चाहिए’. साथ ही उन्होंने कहा कि 2014 के लोकसभा चुनावों में मिली करारी हार से भी उन्होंने काफी कुछ सीखा है. राहुल ने यह भी कहा कि प्रधानमंत्री को विशाल जनादेश मिला था, लेकिन उन्होंने देश की धड़कन को सुनने से इनकार कर दिया. हिंदी भाषी राज्यों राजस्थान, मध्य प्रदेश और छत्तीसगढ़ में कांग्रेस के फिर से उदय के बाद एक प्रेस कांफ्रेंस को संबोधित करते हुए राहुल ने कहा, ‘‘मैं कल अपनी मां से बात कर रहा था और मैं उनसे कह रहा था कि मेरे लिए सबसे अच्छी बात कुछ हुई है तो वह है 2014 का (लोकसभा) चुनाव. मैंने उस चुनाव से काफी कुछ सीखा है.” राहुल गांधी ने कहा कि 2014 के चुनाव से उन्हें जो सबसे अहम चीज सीखने को मिली, वह ‘विनम्रता’ है. उन्होंने कहा, ‘‘यह एक महान देश है और इस देश में सबसे अहम चीज है कि लोग क्या मानते हैं.” कांग्रेस अध्यक्ष ने कहा कि एक नेता के तौर पर यह समझना होता है कि लोग क्या महसूस कर रहे हैं और वह जिस चीज को महसूस करते हैं, उससे जुड़ाव पैदा करना होता है. 

यह भी पढ़ें: Elections Results 2018: PM मोदी ने जनादेश को स्वीकार किया, कांग्रेस को जीत पर दी बधाई


उन्होंने कहा, ‘‘बेबाकी से कहूं तो नरेंद्र मोदी जी ने मुझे सबक सिखाया कि क्या नहीं करना चाहिए.”  राहुल ने कहा, ‘‘पांच साल पहले उन्हें (मोदी को) इस देश में बदलाव लाने का बड़ा मौका दिया गया. दुखद चीज यह है कि उन्होंने देश की धड़कन सुनने से मना कर दिया.” उन्होंने आरोप लगाया कि मोदी ने युवाओं और किसानों की आवाज सुनने से इनकार कर दिया. राहुल ने जोर देकर कहा, ‘‘थोड़ा अहंकार आ गया है. मेरा मानना है कि यह किसी नेता के लिए घातक होता है. उनके काम करने के तरीके से मैंने यह बात सीखी है. मेरे लिए इस देश के लोग ही सबसे अच्छे शिक्षक हैं.

यह भी पढ़ें: मध्य प्रदेश में ‘पिक्चर अभी बाकी है’, इनके पास होगी कांग्रेस की सत्ता की चाबी!

वहीं, छत्तीसगढ़ और राजस्थान में कांग्रेस के सरकार बनाने को तैयार होने और मध्य प्रदेश में कड़ी टक्कर के बीच राहुल ने कहा कि तीनों राज्यों में मुख्यमंत्रियों का चयन काफी सुगमता से किया जाएगा. उन्होंने कहा कि हमने भाजपा को मध्य प्रदेश, राजस्थान और छत्तीसगढ़ में हराया है. मुख्यमंत्रियों के चयन को लेकर कोई मुद्दा नहीं रहेगा. राहुल गांधी ने यह भी कहा कि पार्टी ने चुनावों से पहले विभिन्न राज्यों में पार्टी के अंदर नेताओं के बीच तनाव को प्रभावी तरीके से दूर किया. उन्होंने कहा कि सभी नेताओं ने एकजुट होकर काम किया, जिसने पार्टी को हिन्दी पट्टी के तीन राज्यों में विजेता बनकर उभरने में मदद की. 

यह भी पढ़ें: राहुल ने बताया कि कैसे चुने जाएंगे राजस्थान, मध्यप्रदेश और छत्तीसगढ़ के मुख्यमंत्री

टिप्पणियां


उन्होंने कहा, ‘‘यह जीत कांग्रेस पार्टी के कार्यकर्ताओं, किसानों, युवाओं और छोटे कारोबारियों की जीत है. अब कांग्रेस पार्टी पर बड़ी जिम्मेदारी है. राहुल गांधी ने इस मौके पर कांग्रेस के कार्यकर्ताओं को बब्बर शेर करार दिया.

VIDEO: NDTV से बोले नवजोत सिंह सिद्ध, बुरे दिन जाने वाले हैं और राहुल गांधी आने वाले हैं



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Hope Lawmakers Will Invest Time On Public Welfare, Not Their Parties, Says PM Narendra Modi


Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses reporters outside parliament in New Delhi.

New Delhi: 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had a word of advice for lawmakers today as he walked to parliament to attend the winter session. “I hope members will spend their time in the house for the welfare of the people, not for themselves or their parties,” PM Modi said as early leads of the assembly election results in five states started trickling in.

The winter session of parliament is likely to see a united opposition piling up pressure on the government on a range of issues, such as the exit of RBI governor Urjit Patel, rumblings in the CBI and the Rafale deal controversy, while parties like Shiv Sena are set to make a renewed pitch for Ram temple in Ayodhya.

“This session is important; many issues of public importance will be taken up. I have faith that all the members of the parliament will respect this sentiment and move ahead. Our efforts are that discussions are held on all issues,” PM Modi said. “Let there be differences but we should at least have a dialogue. I hope that we work more than the stipulated time this time,” he said.

The start of the session coincides with the counting of votes for assembly elections in five states, seen as the semi-final battle ahead of next year’s national elections. The ripples of the outcome will be felt inside the house today.

At an all-party meeting on Monday, PM Modi had said the government was ready to discuss issues of national importance in parliament, and the opposition must ensure the house works smoothly.

Over a dozen opposition parties, barring the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Samajwadi Party (SP), held a meeting separately with a larger goal to form a mahagathbandhan or grand alliance to take on the PM Modi-led NDA in 2019.

This unity among opposition parties is likely to reflect inside parliament as well.

For the latest News & Live Updates on Election Results from each assembly constituency in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Mizoram, Chhattisgarh, Telangana, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for updates.





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Prime Minister Narendra Modi Tweets His Farewell To RBI Governor Urjit Patel, Says He Will Be Missed


Narendra Modi had executed the demonetisation initiative under Urjit Patel’s governorship.

New Delhi: 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi described Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Urjit Patel as a “thorough professional with impeccable integrity” in a tweet today, minutes after the top central bank official resigned with immediate effect. His government was embroiled in a bitter conflict with the RBI over autonomy issues until recently, a factor that many believe led to Mr Patel’s decision.

“Dr Urjit Patel is a thorough professional with impeccable integrity. He has been in the Reserve Bank of India for about 6 years as Deputy Governor and Governor. He leaves behind a great legacy. We will miss him immensely,” PM Modi tweeted.

In another tweet, the Prime Minister described the RBI Governor as “an economist of a very high calibre” with a deep and insightful understanding of macro-economic issues. “He steered the banking system from chaos to order and ensured discipline. Under his leadership, the RBI brought financial stability,” the tweet added.

It was under Mr Patel’s governorship that the Narenda Modi government executed the demonetisation initiative two years ago to curb the flow of black money and boost the banking system. However, detractors believe that it did more harm than good to the country’s economy, slowing its overall growth and causing hardships to the people.

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley also took to Twitter to bid farewell to the RBI Governor. “The Government acknowledges with deep sense of appreciation the services rendered by Dr. Urjit Patel to this country both in his capacity as the Governor and the Deputy Governor of The RBI. It was a pleasure for me to deal with him and benefit from his scholarship,” he said. “I wish Dr Patel all the very best and many more years of public service.”

The resignation was greeted with little cheer by others, including former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan and opposition parties. While Mr Rajan termed it as a “matter of concern for all Indians”, the Congress said it was the result of “our chowkidar’s assault on democratic institutions”. The RBI-Government conflict was sparked off by the Modi administration’s attempts to exercise greater control over the central bank and get its hands on its reserve cash ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, among other issues.

For the latest News & Live Updates on Election Results from each assembly constituency in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Mizoram, Chhattisgarh, Telangana, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for updates.





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Rahul Gandhi Slams PM Narendra Modi Over Army Officer’s Comment On Surgical Strikes


Surgical strike: Rahul Gandhi criticised PM Narendra Modi over alleged politicisation of military

New Delhi: 

Congress president Rahul Gandhi has taken a swipe at the Modi government over a comment by a former Army officer that there was “too much hype” over the surgical strike across the Line of Control two years ago.

Lieutenant General DS Hooda (retired), who monitored on live video feed the precision attack on terrorist launch pads in September 2016, had approved the special forces operation in retaliation to the killing of 19 soldiers in Jammu and Kashmir’s Uri by Pakistani terrorists. He said though the initial euphoria may have been a natural reaction, the “hype” around the operation was unnecessary.

“Spoken like a true soldier General. India is so proud of you. Mr 36 has absolutely no shame in using our military as a personal asset. He used the surgical strikes for political capital and the Rafale deal to increase Anil Ambani’s real capital by 30,000 Cr,” Rahul Gandhi tweeted today.

Ministers in the NDA government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi have often highlighted the surgical strike as an achievement the country should be proud of and not to be kept hidden. The opposition has, however, alleged that the government’s continuous use of the surgical strike narrative amounts to misusing the military’s work for political ends.

“I do think there was too much hype over it. The military operation was important and we had to do it. Now how much should it have been politicised, whether it is right or wrong is something that should be asked to politicians,” Lt. General Hooda said at Chandigarh on Friday while attending the Military Literature Festival themed on cross-border operations.

Responding to a question from the audience, Lt. General Hooda said that in hindsight, the surgical strike should have been carried out in secret. “The aim of any such offensive had to be not only tactical but strategic too, which substantially hampers enemy morale,” he said.

Lt. General NS Brar (retired), who also attended the literature festival, asked whether politicians would have taken responsibility had there been any casualty in the surgical strike, and cautioned them against being “adventurists”.

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The Army struck several launch pads across the Line of Control in the surgical strike

Reacting to Lt General Hooda’s comments, Army chief General Bipin Rawat said, “These are individual person’s perceptions, so let’s not comment on them. He was one of the main persons involved in conduct of these operations, so I respect his words very much.”

The Army had said its special forces inflicted “significant casualties” on terrorists waiting across the Line of Control to cross into Indian territory.

“Surgical strike is one of the options available to the Army. It had a positive effect on the country. We have been able to curb terrorism to a great extent,” Northern Army Commander Lt. General Ranbir Singh told news agency ANI.

The government is reportedly planning to set up a surgical strike force comprising the best soldiers drawn from the three branches of the military.

With inputs from ANI

Disclaimer: NDTV has been sued for 10,000 crores by Anil Ambani’s Reliance Group for its coverage of the Rafale deal.

For the latest News & Live Updates on Election Results from each assembly constituency in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Mizoram, Chhattisgarh, Telangana, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for updates.





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Prime Minister Narendra Modi Acting Like Don, Says Congress After ED Raids Against Robert Vadra


Enforcement Directorate raided an office of Robert Vadra and residences of his associates. (File)

New Delhi: 

Terming the Enforcement Directorate (ED) “raids” on the premises of Robert Vadra-owned Skylight Hospitality as “political vendetta”, the Congress today accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of acting like a “don” and “persecuting and hounding everyone opposed to him”.

In a surprise move, the ED raided an office of Robert Vadra — the brother-in-law of Congress president Rahul Gandhi — and the residences of his associates in the national capital region today. Probe teams also searched properties of the businessman’s aides in Bengaluru the same day.

Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said the ED, besides raiding Mr Vadra’s office in the national capital, also carried out searches in residence of his associate, his sister and her in-laws in Noida (Uttar Pradesh), without any search warrant.

“Politics of revenge and malicious vendetta has today reached its nadir. Modi is acting like a don lording over a criminal empire to persecute and hound everyone opposed to him,” Mr Surjewala said.

He said PM Modi is “unnerved” by the “sure shot defeat” in Assembly polls in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram, Telangana and Chhattisgarh and the raids are aimed at diverting the narrative.

“Modi government in last 54 months has let loose a criminal conspiracy to vilify, denigrate and malign Vadra to settle political scores. As all else failed, Modi government has unleashed all its agencies including ED, CBI and Income Tax to victimize Vadra in an utterly mala fide manner,” alleged Mr Surjewala.

For the latest News & Live Updates on Election Results from each assembly constituency in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Mizoram, Chhattisgarh, Telangana, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for updates.





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PM Narendra Modi Wraps Up Poll Campaign With Drum Beats, Sound Of Victory In Dausa


Rajasthan Assembly Election 2018: Prime Minister Narendra Modi played the drum at a rally in Dausa.

Dausa: 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi wrapped up his election campaign in Rajasthan on a high note on Wednesday, putting his drumming skills on full display.

At a rally in Dausa on the last day of campaigning, PM Modi greeted the crowd by playing a jumbo traditional drum or dholak. “The is the sound of victory in Rajasthan… this is the sound 2018 and 2019,” a man could be heard on speaker as PM Modi, accompanied by a local leader, plays the drum.

The video of the brief jamming session was posted by PM Modi on his Facebook and Instagram pages.

“The sound of victory… of development and people power,” he wrote in the Facebook post which received over 32,000 ‘likes’.

“Tried my hands at the drums in Rajasthan. Have a look,” he wrote on Instagram.

At the rally, PM Modi continued his attack on the Congress, saying it is a confused party with confused leadership. “They don’t know the difference between Kumbharam and Kumbhkaran,” he said, referring to Rahul Gandhi’s blooper on Tuesday when he mistakenly referred to a scheme as “Kumbhakaran Lift Yojana” instead of “Kumbha Ram Lift Yojana”.

Last month, PM Modi beat a traditional red dholak before addressing a rally in Chhattisgarh. As he took to the stage, a local leader threw the dholak‘s strap around his neck and persuaded him to proceed. A smiling PM Modi then briefly played the dholak as people around him clapped above their heads. Then he took his seat.

PM Modi’s skills as a drummer was displayed for the first time four years ago, dyring his visit to Japan in September 2014 when he joined the Japanese percussionists to perform a ‘jugalbandi’.





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PM Narendra Targets Congress, Says Wait For VVIP Chopper Scam Accused Christian Michel To Spill Secrets


VVIP chopper case: Prime Minister Narendra Modi attacked the Congress at a rally in Rajasthan.

Sumerpur, Rajasthan: 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi took on the Congress and the Gandhis over the extradition of Christian Michel, the alleged middleman in the AgustaWestland chopper deal who was brought to New Delhi on Tuesday night.

Speaking at an election rally in Rajasthan this afternoon, PM Modi said, “The middleman who kept all the secrets and paid bribes, let us see what happens when the secrets are not a secret anymore. This VVIP chopper deal will go a long way.”

India is investigating charges that Michel, a British national, organised bribes to push a Rs. 3,600-crore contract for VVIP helicopters to be purchased for top Indian leaders.

The AgustaWestland case involves the deal to purchase 12 luxury helicopters for use by the President, Prime Minister, former prime ministers and other VIPs, when Manmohan Singh’s Congress-led coalition was in power.

“You must have seen how we caught the middleman in the VVIP chopper scam and have brought him from Dubai to Delhi. Let us see what skeletons come out of the closet of the Congress,” PM Modi said.

His extradition by Dubai came through on a day Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj held discussions with her UAE counterpart Abdullah bin Zayed in Abu Dhabi.

Michel, who was questioned all though the night at the CBI headquarters, will be produced before a Delhi court today. 

Michel is one of the three alleged middlemen being examined in the case, along with Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa.





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