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75,000 Indian businessmen turned NRIs post demonetisation, says Mamata

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Kolkata, Nov 8: On the first anniversary of demonetisation, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee claimed that around 75,000 Indian industrialists have left the country and turned NRIs after note ban due to harassment and recession, leading to a Rs 7 lakh crore loss for the exchequer.

“About 75,000 Indian industrialists have left the country and became NRIs, after witnessing harassment and recession. They could not take in the torture and mental agony”, Mamata said.

“Even if I consider they have invested between Rs 50 crore to Rs 500 crore, then that means more than Rs 7 lakh crore has already gone out of the country,” she added.

Taking a potshots at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who had promised to bring back black money from Indians living in abroad, Banerjee stated : “Instead of bringing black money, it is our money that has gone out of the country.

She also sought probe into why the government favoured the digital payments solutions app Paytm Mall, which is supported by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba was under investigation in China for “withholding information”.

“When the Chinese government itself is conducting investigation against Alibaba, because the company does not give full information, then why is it that in India, all business is going to them?”

“There must be some investigation. So long this ruing party (BJP) is in saddle at the centre, truth will not come out. But they are not going to be in power for ever. Then there will be inviesigation and the truth will be out in the public domain,” she said.

Hitting out at Modi’s decision of scrapping Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes from the November 8-9 midnight last year, Mamata asserted “More than 100 people died, 12,500 farmers committed suicide. Over 50 lakh people lost jobs. From textiles to the unorganised sector, all are suffering. No employment will be created for the next two years.

“It has been a bad decision for the country, politically and governance wise,” she further said.

Raising doubts about the BJP government’s intentions behind the note ban decision, Banerjee asked whether it was a planned exercise or “just a conspiracy to make black money white. Was it an innocent decision or a conspiracy?”

The Chief Minister argued that all the three benefits that Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke of for undertaking the demonetisation move has proved null and void.

“They said demonetisation was a step against corruption. But all economists have said time and again that it is a bad move. He said it would end terrorism. But in Kashmir alone, terrorism has gone up by 38 per cent. There has been an 82 per cent increase in Maoist violence.

“As for the claims that the move will end black money and fake currency, we are all waiting for the Rs 15 lakh that would land in our pocket once the government gets black money hidden abroad back into the country. There has not even been an one per cent effect on circulation of fake currency.”

Not only this, Banerjee also targeted PM Modi for implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) in July, despite repeated pleas from the opposition to delay it.

“We asked them to wait and prepare that in a planned way and not to hurry. But they had to do it July itself. It seems they owe allegiance to some quarter”, she said.

Wefornews Bureau 

India

Does NEP seek to end reservation policy? Sitaram Yechury asks PM Modi

In the letter, Yechury highlighted how the NEP had no mention of reservations for the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Class communities, and the differently-abled.

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Sitaram Yechury

CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday, asking him if the new National Education Policy sought to end the reservation policy in the educational institutions.

In the letter, Yechury highlighted how the NEP had no mention of reservations for the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Class communities, and the differently-abled.

Approved by the Union cabinet in July, the NEP replaces the 34-year-old National Policy on Education framed in 1986. It is aimed at paving the way for transformational reforms in school and higher education systems.

“I am writing this letter to highlight one particular issue which is causing great anxiety especially among SC, ST, OBC communities and the disabled,” Yechury said. “It is truly shocking that NEP 2020 makes no mention of reservations for these sections, either for admissions or for appointments to teaching and non-teaching positions.”

In fact, even the word ‘reservation’ does not appear anywhere in the policy document. This has led to widespread concern whether this act of omission is deliberate, conveying the intention to reverse many decades of efforts to integrate quality, quantity and equity in the education system, according to Yechury.

The CPI(M) leader sought Modi’s response to a set of questions, which the former said were pertinent aspects that need to be discussed.

“Does NEP 2020 seek to end the policy of reservations for SC, ST, OBC and disabled in educational institutions? If not, could you please clarify as to why NEP2020 does not contain any mention of reservations?,” Yechury asked.

He alleged that various elements of the NEP were being rolled out in different parts of the country in an ad-hoc “piecemeal manner” without discussing with important stakeholders — state governments (education is on the concurrent list), students, teachers, non-teaching staff and experts.

“This is creating grave uncertainties and confusion about the actual direction proposed for the Indian Education system under this new policy, by your government,” he added.

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Biden’s inner circle get key cabinet posts as John Kerry named climate tsar

He has made unsubstantiated claims of widespread electoral fraud and is continuing to pursue legal challenges over the result.

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Former US secretary of state John Kerry will act as “climate tsar” when US President-elect Joe Biden takes office.

He was one of several people named for top positions by the Biden transition team on Monday.

Other key picks include Avril Haines as the first woman to lead intelligence, and long-time aide Antony Blinken as secretary of state – the most important foreign policy position.

It comes as calls are growing for Donald Trump to concede the election.

He has made unsubstantiated claims of widespread electoral fraud and is continuing to pursue legal challenges over the result.

Mr Biden is projected to beat President Trump by 306 votes to 232 when the US electoral college meets to formally confirm the winner on 14 December. This is far above the 270 votes he needs.

In a statement following the announcements on Monday, Mr Biden said: “I need a team ready on Day One to help me reclaim America’s seat at the head of the table, rally the world to meet the biggest challenges we face, and advance our security, prosperity, and values. This is the crux of that team.”
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Some of the positions require confirmation in the US Senate.

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‘Nominated’ leaders should avoid making statements publicly: Congress

Khera pointed out that Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is pushing for CWC elections, is a CWC nominated member who can just pick the phone and call anybody instead of making public statements.

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pawan khera

New Delhi: The Congress has launched a counter attack against the senior leaders who have made statements about the party in public.

Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera said, “The nominated senior leaders have access to the party leadership and should refrain from speaking publicly.

Khera pointed out that Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is pushing for CWC elections, is a CWC nominated member who can just pick the phone and call anybody instead of making public statements.

Maintaining that every party has an internal system to discuss each issue, including the Bihar election results, Khera said, “I hope the senior leaders will put forward the best example.

Azad, who is one of the dissenters who had questioned the party leadership and functioning, has demanded that the party should hold elections to strengthen the organisation and make it more responsible.

Dismissing allegations of rebellion levelled against the dissenters, Azad, the Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, said, “We are reformists and want revival of the party.”

Azad, the second senior Congress leader after former Union minister Kapil Sibal to speak about the party’s dismal show in the Bihar Assembly polls, said that the Congress should shed the five-star culture, at least during elections, and insisted that the leaders should reach out to the people.

Azad also insisted that elections should be held at different levels of the party so that people become responsible and work for the party.

Azad also said that there is no issues with the first family in the Congress and gave a clean chit to interim party chief Sonia Gandhi and former President Rahul Gandhi.

He also noted that the party should be more active at the ground level during elections, a statement that has been perceived as a direct criticism of the leaders involved in the Bihar elections.

Sibal too had raised similar concerns. Contending that he was “compelled to speak publicly” as there is “no forum in the party to discuss party issues”, he said the Congress needs efficient and senior leaders to manage elections.

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