Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal Congress

Cong Holds CEC Meet, Finalises Candidates For 12 LS Seats In WB

Congress has finalised the names of candidates for 12 Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal, sources said on Tuesday.

The finalisation of names was done after Congress held a meeting of its Central Election Committee on Tuesday.

“Discussions took place for Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, and West Bengal by the screening committee,” said Congress leader Jaivardhan Singh.

The Congress has already announced candidates for 82 Lok Sabha seats. In its first list, the party declared the names of 39 candidates, while in its second list, the names of 43 candidates were announced.

Voting for Lok Sabha elections in West Bengal will be held in all seven phases.

The Trinamool Congress has already announced its candidates for all 42 Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal. In the previous Lok Sabha polls, the TMC won 22 seats, while the BJP sprung a major surprise, winning 18 seats.

Earlier today, the Congress Working Committee held a detailed discussion on the manifesto for the Lok Sabha polls, which has a heavy thrust on the party’s ‘nyay’ agenda and authorised party chief Mallikarjun Kharge to grant it final approval.

Addressing a press conference after the CWC meeting, Congress leaders KC Venugopal and Jairam Ramesh said that the party will build on the momentum of the Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra, during which the party announced five guarantees and a plan has been prepared to take the message of guarantees at the grassroots level.

“The meeting we had today was not just for our manifesto but for our ‘nyay patra’. Congress is absolutely ready for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. In the meeting today, there were discussions on our agenda. For the last 63 days, Rahul Gandhi has been talking about our five Nyay and has announced 25 guarantees. This is not just a simple manifesto but an important ‘nyay patra’ so that the people of our country can see a better future,” he said.

The meeting of the CWC, the party’s highest decision-making body, was held days after the announcement of the schedule for the Lok Sabha elections. The Lok Sabha polls and assembly polls in four states will be held from April 19 to June 1 and the results will be declared on June 4. (ANI)

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Congress MP Shashi Tharoor

Tharoor Accuses Left Of Dividing Vote In Thiruvananthapuram

Congress MP Shashi Tharoor on Tuesday alleged that the “only effect” of the CPI’s campaign against him in Thiruvananthapuram is to “divide the anti-BJP vote”.

In a post on X, the senior Congress leader said, “It’s ironic that the same @cpofindia that complains about @RahulGandhi’s candidature in Wayanad is playing the BJP’s game in Thiruvananthapuram”.

His post added: “The only effect of the CPI’s campaign against me in Thiruvananthapuram is to divide the anti-BJP vote. And they preach alliance dharma in Wayanad!”

Reacting to this, CPI General Secretary D Raja said it is left that is “fighting the communal and fascist forces”.

“It is an absurd statement. An educated man like Shashi Tharoor must understand the history of Kerala properly. It is the Left that is fighting the communal and fascist forces…so many Congress leaders are leaving and joining BJP…,” he said.

Hitting back, the CPI leader questioned why is the Congress leader Rahul Gandhi contesting from Wayanad in Kerala.

“Rahul Gandhi claims that he is spearheading the fight against BJP, then why is he contesting from Wayanad and fighting against LDF? Congress must explain, what message they want to convey to people. Who are their main political enemies…,” Raja told ANI on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Tharoor believes that his work over the last 15 years in the constituency will speak for itself.

“I’ve served the people of Thiruvananthapuram for 15 years. They know me and have seen my service. It’s not as if I’ve got anything to be ashamed of in my track record. I’ve been consistently available and attended to all the major issues,” he said. “It’s always been a three-cornered fight here because I took the seat from the LDF. They had won it two times before me and then in the last two times, the BJP came second. So we have to take both candidates seriously. I’m very confident that I would prevail,” Shashi Tharoor said on Monday.

BJP has fielded Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar against Congress MP Tharoor.

Pannyan Raveendran, the Left Democratic Front’s Lok Sabha candidate from the Thiruvananthapuram constituency, said that the main fight in the constituency is between the LDF and the Congress-led UDF.

“The main contest is between LDF and UDF. BJP is irrelevant in Thiruvananthapuram,” Raveendran who won the constituency in 2005 told ANI on Tuesday.

Kerala will hold elections in a single phase on April 26. There are 20 Lok Sabha constituencies in Kerala and the BJP has never won a parliamentary seat in the state.

Earlier in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the NDA won 353 seats, the UPA stood at 91, and Others won 98. (ANI)

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nationwide caste census Rahul Gandhi

Bihar Caste Census An X-ray For Country: Rahul

Reiterating his call for a nationwide caste census, which he stated earlier was a promise that the Congress would fulfil if voted back at the Centre, Rahul Gandhi on Saturday termed Bihar’s caste census an ‘X-ray’ for the country that will shed light on the real living standards of the poor.

“Have we ever wondered who the poor are? How many are there and in what condition? Is it not necessary to count all these? The caste census conducted in Bihar revealed that 88 per cent of the poor population comes from Dalit, tribal, backward and minority communities. The figures from Bihar are just a small glimpse of the real picture of the country, we do not even have an idea in what condition the poor population of the country is living.,” Gandhi said in a tweet.

“That is why we are going to take two historic steps – caste counting and economic mapping, based on which we will uproot the reservation limit of 50 per cent. This step will X-ray the country and provide the correct reservation, rights and share to everyone,” the Congress MP stated further.

“This will not only help in making the right policies and plans for the poor but will also help in rescuing them from the struggle of education, earning and medicines and connecting them to the mainstream of development. Therefore, wake up, wake up and raise your voice, caste counting is your right and it will take you out of the darkness of difficulties and towards the light,” he added.

“Count is our slogan because counting is the ‘first step to justice’,” he added.

Earlier, on Friday, Rahul said his party will change the status quo in the country in which a select few billionaires have complete control over wealth and resources, while 90 per cent of the population remains marginalised and sidelined.

He promised to create a special Rs 5,000 crore dedicated corpus to encourage entrepreneurship among the youth coming from ordinary family backgrounds in a bid to enable them to start their own businesses. (ANI)

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Congress 39 Lok Sabha constituencies

Cong Releases First List Of 39 Candidates, Rahul To Contest From Wayanad

Congress on Friday released its first list of candidates for 39 Lok Sabha constituencies.

The names have been announced for Lok Sabha seats in Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala, Lakshwadeep, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Sikkim, Telangana and Tripura.

Of the total 39 candidates announced, 16 are from Kerala, seven from Karnataka and six from Chhattisgarh, four from Telangana. Two from Meghalaya and one each from Nagaland, Tripura, Sikkim and Lakshwadeep.

Congress General Secretary KC Venugopal informed that senior party leader Rahul Gandhi will again contest from the Wayanad constituency, the seat won by him in 2019.

The list of 39 candidates was released after the party held its Central Election Committee meeting on Thursday.

A total of six seats were announced from Chhattisgarh, Shivkumar Dahariya has been fielded from Jangir-Champa, Jyotsana Mahant will contest from Korba, Bhupesh Baghel has been fielded from Rajnandgaon, Rajendra Sahu from Durg, Vikas Upadhay from Raipur, Tamradhwaj Sahu from Mahasamund.

Also, Congress announced names for seven seats in Karnataka, including DK Suresh contesting from Bengaluru Rural.

In Karnataka, Anandaswamy Gaddadevara Mat will contest from Haveri, Geetha Shivarajkumar has been fielded from Shimoga, Shreyal Patel from Hassan, SP Muddahanumegowda from Tumkur and Vekanataramegowda (Star Chandru) from Mandya.

A total of 16 candidates have been announced from Kerala, including Shashi Tharoor from Thiruvananthapuram.

Addressing the press conference, KC Venugopal said,” Out of these 39 candidates, 15 are from General category and 24 are from SC, ST, OBC, and minorities.”

Congress party’s second Election Committee meeting will be held on March 11 in Delhi to discuss the candidates for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.

Meanwhile, the BJP has already released its first list of 195 candidates.

The Lok Sabha polls are likely to be held in April-May this year. (ANI)

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BRS Congress Modi

Cong, BRS Are Two Sides Of Same Coin: Modi Hits Opposition

Alleging a four-decade-long nexus between ruling Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) and Congress for covering each other’s scam, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday hit back at both parties and said that both the parties are “two sides” of the “same coin.”

Addressing a public rally in Sangareddy, PM Modi said that the Modi government does not hesitate before conducting surgical strikes or airstrikes (corruption).

“Congress and BRS are two sides of the same coin. There is a nexus between both parties. They provide a cover for each other’s scam. Congress has made Telangana its new ATM. Such behaviour will not go on for long… Modi govt does not hesitate before conducting surgical strikes or airstrikes,” the Prime Minister said.

The Prime Minister asserted that members of ‘Parivarvadi’ parties opened bank accounts outside India to hide their black money.

“Members of ‘Parivarvadi’ parties open bank accounts outside India to hide their black money, while I help the poor to open Jan Dhan accounts and propel their growth. ‘Parivarvadis’ live in luxurious homes, while I make sure that the poor get to sleep in pucca houses. ‘Parivarvadi’ sold India’s resources to uplift their children, while I strive to convert the dreams of your children into reality… 140 crore Indians are my family,” he said.

PM Modi further said that he has deposited all the gifts in Toshakhana and it is auctioned and is being invested in the service of Mother Ganga.

“The monthly payment that I receive from the government, whenever I get a chance, I donate some of it to people. ‘Parivarvadis’ have taken expensive gifts while being in the government and have converted their black money into white through gifts, but till date, I have deposited all the gifts in Toshakhana and it is auctioned and whatever money comes, it is invested in the service of Mother Ganga,” he asserted.

The Prime Minister reiterated the “400 seats pitch” during his address to a public event and said that the slogan of ‘400 paar’ is being raised because the country has faith in “Modi’s guarantee.”

“Support us to build a Viksit Bharat. “Abki Baar, 400 Paar!” he added.

The Prime Minister asserted that the BRS and Congress lack vision for the development of Telangana. BJP is fully committed to diligently serving the people of the state.

PM Modi is on three visits to Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, West Bengal and Bihar from March 4 to 6. (ANI)

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Caste census congress

Cong Brings Resolution In Telangana To Conduct Caste Census In State

The Congress government in Telangana has brought a resolution in assembly on Friday to conduct a Caste census in the state.

The caste census was among the guarantees promised by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi to the people of Telangana.

An official statement issued by the State Government said,” This House resolves to take up a comprehensive door-to-door household survey (Socio, Economic, Educational, Employment, Political and Caste Survey (KULA GANANA) of entire Telangana State as per the decision of the Council of Ministers of 4″ February 2024 so as to plan and implement various Socio, Economic, Educational, Employment and Political opportunities for the amelioration of Backward Classes, SC and ST citizens of the State and other weaker sections of the State.”

Backward Class Welfare Minister Ponnam Prabhakar initiated the resolution in the State Legislative Assembly on Friday to conduct a caste census in Telangana. This census will gather caste data for targeted welfare & equitable resource distribution.

“According to the decision taken by the Telangana Cabinet on February 4, to formulate and implement various social, economic, educational, employment and political opportunities plans for the advancement of backward classes, schedule castes, schedule tribes and other weaker sections, the Government has decided to conduct a comprehensive household caste enumeration family survey for political employment” Minister Ponnam Prabhakar said in a post on X.

“This is an unprecedented moment. Today is unforgettable in my life He came into politics from the weaker sections who came into politics from the student stage. Many times our party leader Rahul Gandhi has mentioned caste enumeration. Accordingly, we will move ahead with useful information regarding the welfare of all. This caste census is under the purview of the central government but we are conducting the caste enumeration in view of the conditions in the states. Through this survey it is expected that justice will be done to SC, ST, BC and other weaker sections in the state Thank you to our CM Revanth Reddy and Deputy CM Bhatti for giving me the opportunity” Ponnam Prabhakar added.

While campaigning for the Telangana Assembly Polls which took place last year, Rahul Gandhi had said that the most pressing issue in India right now is the caste census.

Congress Working Committee (CWC) had also adopted a resolution on October 9 promising a nationwide caste census as part of the decadal census, if it comes to power in the Centre. It said that the 50 per cent cap on reservations will also be removed through legislation.

Congress had won an absolute majority in Telangana for the first time since the state was founded, winning 64 of 119 seats. (ANI)

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Mamata Banerjee NRC CAA

No Alliance In Bengal: Mamata

The INDIA bloc suffered a huge setback on Wednesday as Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee said that her party declared that the Trinamool Congress would fight alone in Bengal.

“I had no discussions with the Congress party. I have always said that in Bengal, we will fight alone. I am not concerned about what will be done in the country but we are a secular party and in Bengal, we will alone will defeat BJP.” the TMC supremo said.

“I gave many proposals but they rejected them from the beginning. From then, we have decided to fight the elections in Bengal alone.”

The Bengal Chief Minister also claimed she had not been informed of Rahul Gandhi’s Nyay Yatra passing through Bengal, contrary to claims by the Congress that they had invited INDIA bloc parties to join the Yatra.

“They did not even bother to inform me that they will be coming to West Bengal as a matter of courtesy even though I am a part of the INDIA bloc. So there is no  relation with me as far as Bengal is concerned” Mamata Banerjee said.

“We will decide on what to do at the all-India level. We are a secular party. We will do whatever we can to defeat the BJP. The alliance does not comprise any one party. We have said that they should fight in some states and the regional parties should be left to fight alone in the other states. They should not interfere” she added.

The breakdown in Trinamool and the Congress came after state unit chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdury continued his attack on the Bengal Chief Minister.

In a news conference on Tuesday, Adhir Chowdhury claimed that in the 2011 elections, Mamata Banerjee came to power with the mercy of Congress.

“This time, the elections will not be fought at the mercy of Mamata Banerjee. The Congress defeated the BJP and TMC in the two seats that Mamata Banerjee is leaving. The Congress party knows how to contest the elections. Mamta Banerjee is an opportunist; she came to power in 2011, with the mercy of Congress,” the Congress MP said.

Rahul Gandhi who is in Assam as part of his Nyay Yatra tried to quell the damage been done by the state unit chief’s repeated attacks by insisting that he had a good relationship with the TMC supremo.

“The negotiations on seat-sharing is underway, I don’t want to comment here. But Mamata Banerjee is very close to me and our party. Sometimes our leaders say something, their leaders say something, and it goes on. It’s a natural thing. Such comments won’t matter and these are not things that are going to disrupt things,” Rahul Gandhi had said on Tuesday.

The Trinamool Congress reportedly was willing to offer the Congress a maximum of three Lok Sabha seats of the 42 seats in Bengal. In the 2019 elections the Congress had won two Lok Sabha seats while the TMC had won 22 seats.

With this announcement, of going alone, by Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday it appears that the doors are closed for the Congress in Bengal. For the INDIA bloc stitching together alliances has proven as stumbling block and it appears that now the alliance may not be able to put together a united front against the BJP. (ANI)

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Rahul Assam

Chronology Samajhiye: Jairam Aafter Rahul Was Denied Entry To Assam’s Batadrava

Amid a standoff between the Congress and the Assam Government over Rahul Gandhi’s visit to Batadrava Than, Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Sunday said “Chronology Samajhiye.”

In a post on X, Jairam Ramesh said that first, the temple head welcomed Rahul Gandhi’s visit but Assam CM suddenly announced that he could only visit Batadrava Than after 3 pm on January 22, which is the Pran Pratishtha day of Lord Ram in Ayodhya.

“Chronology samajhiye”: On Jan 11, 2024, the local Congress MLA Shibomani Barua and another MLA Rana Goswami met the Bordowa Than Satradhikar and informed him of Rahul Gandhi’s desire to spend a few minutes in the early hours of January 22nd during the Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra at the hallowed birthplace of Sri Sri Sankardev. This desire was welcomed and supported by the Satradhikar. A few days later, Gaurav Gogoi the local MP, met with the Bordowa Than Satradhikar and reiterated Rahul Gandhi’s desire. Once again, this desire was welcomed and supported,” Jairam Ramesh said on X.

“On January 20th evening, the Assam CM suddenly announced that Rahul Gandhi could not visit the Bordowa Than on the morning of January 22nd and could do so only after 3 pm the same day,” he added.

Further, Jairam alleged that the head of the Temple was pressurised by the Assam CM, who in turn had been instructed from Delhi.

“On the morning of January 21st, Satradhikar states that because of huge crowds expected at the Than on the morning of January 22nd, Rahul Gandhi should visit the holy place after 3 pm. This he said was the decision of the Management Committee. The Bordowa Than Management Committee was pressurised by the Assam CM into taking the decision it did, who in turn has been instructed from Delhi,” he said.

Congress General Secretary in-charge Communications also mentioned that on Monday morning after much negotiation, only the local MP and MLA were allowed to visit the Bordowa Than.

“It is unprecedented that the local MP and local MLA had to negotiate their visit when they should have been able to move about freely in their constituency,” Jairam said.

Meanwhile, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday who arrived at the Batadrava Than, the birthplace of revered Vaishnavite saint Srimanta Sankardeva, in Assam, took a veiled dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi after he was denied permission to enter the shrine.

“We want to visit the temple (Batadrava Than). What crime have I committed that I cannot visit the temple?…” Rahul Gandhi said.

“I want to go to the temple, what is wrong with this? Earlier we were invited but now the administration is saying that we cannot go. “Aaj sirf ek vyakti mandir mein ja sakta hain…”(Perhaps today only one person can go to the temple),” the Congress leader said in an apparent dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of the ‘Pran Pratishta’ ceremony at Ayodhya Ram Temple.

Congress workers also held a protest at the site.

The Congress leader’s Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra is currently on its Assam leg. (ANI)

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Modi In Kerala

LDF, UDF Have History Of Scams: Modi In Kerala

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday attacked the Congress-led UDF and the ruling CPI(M)-led LDF in Kerala for “corruption and scams” and expressed confidence that the state will play a role in BJP’s victory in the Lok Sabha polls.

Addressing ‘Shaktikendra Incharges Sammelan’ here, the Prime Minister said that positive outcomes of BJP’s transparent policies are clearly visible and the party gives priority to the progress of the poor, women, youth and farmers.

“According to a recent report, around 25 crore people have come out of poverty in the last 9 years. Whereas, for five decades, Congress only gave the slogan of ‘Garibi Hatao’. It shows that the path we have chosen for a Viksit Bharat is right…Lok Sabha elections are to elect the government of the country. We have to inform our voters that 10 years ago, there were terrorist attacks every other day which used to affect our investments and the people living in foreign nations. LDF (Left Democratic Front), UDF (United Democratic Front) has a history of corruption and scams,” he said.

“The priority of BJP is to increase the income as well as savings of the people of the country. Under the Ayushman Bharat Yojana, around Rs 1 lakh crore of the people of the country have been saved. Till now, people have saved more than Rs 25,000 crore because of the Jan Aushadhi Kendras,” he added.

He lauded the efforts of BJP workers to make the party strong.

“We saw the potential of the Kerala BJP party workers during the Nari Shakti Sammelan in Thrissur. With my own experience, I can say that only a strong organisation can have such a huge conference. It shows that you are all putting in a lot of effort. BJP is the only political party that has a track record of fast pace development and vision for the future,” he said.

“It is always a happy moment for me to join the supporters of BJP who work to strengthen BJP in the state. Besides adverse situations, our party workers have made sure that the BJP shines. I want to salute all those party workers who stood with their ideology and stayed committed to their patriotism,” he added.

He urged party workers to focus on winning the booth, saying that it would pave for the party’s victory in the state.

“As elections come close, I am certain that Kerala is going to play a role in BJP’s win. Our first resolution should be ‘We will win our booth’. If we can win a booth, we can win Kerala. You have to work harder and pay attention to every voter. Creating a bond with the people of Kerala should be your priority. You have to bring everyone to ‘Viksit Bharat Sankalp Yatra’ and help them join the drive of ‘Modi ki Guarantee’.”

The Prime Minister said that the confidence of Indians is soaring due to the policies of his government.

“The confidence of Indians is soaring as the world now talks of India as ‘Vishwamitra’. Our relations with Gulf countries have never been better. For this reason, there are more opportunities and respect for Indians in the Gulf region,” he said.

“We aspire to increase disposable income while helping reduce out-of-pocket expenditures for the people. Ayushman Bharat Yojana has helped people save Rs 1 lakh crore. The discount provided at Jan Aushadhi Kendras has helped people save over Rs 25,000 crore,” he added.

The Prime Minister said that the positive outcomes of BJP’s transparent policies are visible.

“Today, BJP has become a party of the people. It is the only party that has a track record of fast development and a clear vision for the future. The poor, women, youth and farmers are the four categories whose empowerment will lay the foundation for a Viksit Bharat. It is only the BJP which prioritizes the welfare of these people.

The Prime Minister said that the love and support of the people of Kerala motivates him.

“Earlier today, I visited the Guruvayur Temple to seek blessings of Lord Guruvayurappan and outside the temple, thousands of people gathered to shower me with their blessings,” he said. (ANI)

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YS Jagan Mohan Reddy

Cong Appoints YS Sharmila Party Chief In AP

The Congress on Tuesday appointed YS Sharmila Reddy, sister of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, as president of the party in the poll-bound state.

The decision was announced a day after G Rudra Raju resigned as Congress chief in the state.

YS Sharmila had joined the Congress earlier this month. She also merged her party YSR Telangana Party in Congress.

“Congress President has appointed YS Sharmila Reddy as president of Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee with immediate effect,” a party release said.

G Rudra Raju has been appointed special invitee to the Congress Working Committee.

Congress leaders in Andhra Pradesh are hopeful of the party’s prospects in the state after the party’s victory in Telangana assembly polls in November last year. Congress ousted the Bharat Rashtra Samithi from power in Telangana.

Assembly polls in Andhra Pradesh would be held along with Lok Sabha polls, expected in April-May this year.

After joining Congress, Sharmila met party chief Mallikarjun Kharge. (ANI)

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