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Didn’t want to tweet only, so entered politics to do something: Gautam Gambhir



Gautam Gambhir
New Delhi, May 1: Cricketer-turned-politician Gautam Gambhir, who is BJPs candidate from East Delhi Lok Sabha constituency, says he entered politics because he wanted to implement what he has been tweeting about.

Gambhir, a left-handed batsman who pursued cricketing career for about 15 years, feels politics is also going to be an exciting and challenging field.

The 37-year-old former opener of the Indian cricket team faces the challenge of retaining the seat for the BJP from where the party’s Maheish Girri was elected in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

He has to fight it out with Congress’ Arvinder Singh Lovely, a three-time MLA, and Aam Aadmi Party’s Atishi.

“I don’t want to be someone who keeps on tweeting on every issue in the country and then forgets about it. I am someone who is different. I am someone who takes that plunge and does something what I tweet about,” Gambhir told IANS.

“There are two kinds of people — one who tweet about everything and the other who want to tweet and try to go on the ground and implement those (ideas). So, I feel that I have taken the other side and I have the courage to do it,” said the former player, who has been very active on social media, mostly tweeting about the nationalistic issues.

He said from the cricket field, he brings accountability, integrity and honesty with him in politics.

Asked about how he saw the contest against Lovely and Atishi, he said he does not believe in fight against any other candidate. “I believe in fighting with my own self.”

Contending that he focuses on how to push development, he said, “I think on how quickly we can deliver and fulfill the promises we make to the people.”

About the electoral prospects of the BJP, the newly-inducted member said, “I am sure the entire country knows that this country needs a strong leadership, a decisive leadership and a leader who has the vision to make this country a super power. So, I am sure that you are going to get to know this on May 23 (when results come).”

He said a lot of governments in the past had the opportunity to come out as a strong political party and strong leadership but they couldn’t.

“So if the Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) has taken two strong decisions in the first five years, then we have to give credit to him,” Gambhir said, referring to the cross-LoC surgical strike of 2016 and the air strike on Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) terror camp in Pakistan’s Balakot in February this year.

He said there a Modi wave still exists in the country as a lot of development works have taken place in the last five years.

“And it’s not just the wave, the promises have been delivered in the five years and that is why the people have trust in the BJP and the Prime Minister,” he said.

When pointed out that AAP and the Congress have been accusing the Modi government of not delivering on its promises, Gambhir said, “They do not have the vision for development and this is why they keep on leveling allegations on everything.”



Congress forms 5-party Mahagathbandhan to take on BJP in Assam

AIUDF General Secretary Aminul Islam said the Mahagathbandhan is good for Assam as it would fulfil the expectations of the people of the state and throw the BJP out of power.




BJP and Congress Flag Poster

Guwahati, Jan 20: The opposition Congress on Tuesday announced a five-party ‘Mahagathbandhan’ to take on the ruling BJP-led coalition in Assam in the upcoming Assembly elections expected to be held in April-May.

Announcing the Mahagathbandhan (grand alliance), Assam Congress President Ripun Bora said that his party would contest the elections in alliance with the All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF), the three Left parties – Communist Party of India-Marxist, Communist Party of India, Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) – and the Anchalik Gana Morcha (AGM).

He said that regional parties are welcome to join the Mahagathbandhan to oust the Bharatiya Janata Party from power in the state.

“The Congress is always keen to oust all communal forces for the best interest of the country. People are ready to vote out the BJP as its misgovernance caused a lot of distress to the people, who have become fed up with the BJP,” he said.

AIUDF General Secretary Aminul Islam said the Mahagathbandhan is good for Assam as it would fulfil the expectations of the people of the state and throw the BJP out of power.

AGM President Ajit Kumar Bhuyan, also a Rajya Sabha member, termed the formation of the grand alliance as a historic moment. He sounded optimistic that the grand alliance would defeat the BJP in the forthcoming elections.

Besides the AIUDF, a Muslim-dominated party in Assam, and the Left parties, state Congress leaders had held several meetings in the past few months with the ‘like minded parties’.

AIUDF President and Lok Sabha member Maulana Badruddin Ajmal has been stating that the two parties (Congress and AIUDF) have decided to contest the Assembly polls together since their tie-up for the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) polls held last month.

Recently, interim Congress President Sonia Gandhi had appointed three central leaders — Bhupesh Baghel (Chhattisgarh Chief Minister), Mukul Wasnik (AICC General Secretary) and Shakeel Ahmed Khan (Bihar MLA) — to oversee the election campaign in Assam in close coordination with the AICC general secretaries and the party in-charge for the state.

Baghel and other central leaders held meetings with the state party leaders in Guwahati before Assam Congress chief announced the Mahagathbandhan.

The Congress had suffered a setback in the recent elections to the BTC and the Tiwa Autonomous Council. Two of its MLAs – Ajanta Neog and Rajdeep Goala – had joined the BJP last month, delivering another blow to the party.

In the 2016 Assam assembly elections, the Congress had contested on its own without an electoral alliance with any party, securing 24 seats.

After the last Assembly polls, the BJP formed the government in Assam for the first time after winning 60 seats following the formation of an alliance with the Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) and the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP), which won 14 and 12 seats, respectively. The ruling alliance also has the support of an Independent MLA.

The 126-member Assam Assembly is likely to go to the polls in April-May along with West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry.

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Sonia forms 10-member election panel for Kerala chaired by Chandy




Sonia Gandhi in Cong meeting

New Delhi, Jan 20: Eyeing the assembly polls in Kerala, the Congress on Tuesday announced a 10-member Election Management and Strategy Committee under the leadership of former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy as its chairperson along with senior party members like Shashi Tharoor and K. C. Venugopal.

Venugopal, who is the party’s General Secretary (Organisations) in a statement said that party chief Sonia Gandhi has approved the appointment of Election Management and Strategy Committee of Kerala Congress for the upcoming assembly elections with immediate effect.

He further said that the Committee shall meet frequently to discuss matters related to electioneering, co-ordination and formulation of election strategies.

Besides Chandy, Tharoor and Venugopal, the party has also named Mullapallay Ramachandran, Ramesh Chennithala, Tariq Anwar, K. Muraleedharan, V.M. Sudheeran, K. Sudhakaran and Kodikkunnil Suresh as the panel members.

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Bengal: Left, Congress leaders hold talks; to finalise candidates by Jan end





Kolkata, Jan 18: Top leaders of the CPI(M)-led Left Front and the Congress conducted a meeting here on Sunday to discuss the seat-sharing and other election-related strategies, leaders of both the parties said, adding that their candidates would be finalised by the end of this month.

However, both the Congress and Left leaders said that they would hold more such meetings this month to finalise the candidates’ list for the upcoming Assembly elections, expected to be held in April-May.

Both the party leaders would meet again on January 25 and 28 to settle the seat-sharing issue and other poll-related preparedness.

In 2016 West Bengal Assembly polls, the two parties had forged an alliance and won 76 seats in the 294-member Assembly.

Post meeting, Left Front Chairman and CPI-M politburo member Biman Bose said that their discussion with the Congress was cordial and fruitful.

“To defeat the communal force BJP and the fascist TMC (Trinamool Congress), the Congress-Left parties’ alliance is must. The alliance would definitely thrash the binary rule in Bengal,” the veteran Left leader told the media.

Bose said that leaders and workers of Left parties and Congress should fight against the BJP and the TMC with shoulder to shoulder.

Party sources said that the Congress wanted to contest in 130 seats but the Left leaders did not concede the demand.

Bengal Congress chief and the party’s leader in the Lok Sabha, Adhir Chowdhury said that the seat sharing with the Left parties would not be completed in a single meeting, however, the seat sharing process would be concluded within this month.

CPI-M state secretary Suryakanta Mishra, Congress leaders Abdul Mannan and Pradip Bhattacharjee were present at the meeting.The Left and Congress parties are likely to hold a mega joint rally in Kolkata soon to kick start their election campaign.

The all important elections to the 294-member West Bengal assembly are likely to be held in April-May along with Assam, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.In the 2016 West Bengal polls,

Trinamool had retained its majority and won 211 seats while the Bharatiya Janata Party won three seats.

However, in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the Left and Congress had fought separately with the Congress won two seats, the Left Front dominated by the CPI-M, which ruled Bengal for 34 years (1977-2011), drew a blank.

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