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End of Shah era? Nadda is the new BJP Boss

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J P Nadda

New Delhi, Jan 20 : The BJP has got a brand new President in the form of J.P. Nadda. As reported earlier, by 2.30 PM, the announcement came, bringing an end to Amit Shah era. Party Working President Jagat Prakash Nadda won unopposed, sparking celebrations outside the BJP headquarters here on Monday. The choice of the announcement date on ‘ekadashi’, was done keeping the auspiciousness in mind.

Amit Shah himself was among the people who proposed Nadda’s name along with Nitin Gadkari and Rajnath Singh.

Soon after his annointment, BJP election returning officer Radha Mohan Singh told the media, “I announce J.P. Nadda as the new BJP President.”

Soon after it, Shah was seen hugging Nadda – embodiment of the proximity the two share.

By 4 p.m., the prime minister Narendra Modi himself is expected in the BJP headquarters to congratulate Nadda.

The nomination process for the post of the BJP President began at 10 a.m. and went on till 12.30 p.m. For the next hour, the filed nomination paper, which was just one, was examined and another one hour till 2.30 p.m. was provided to withdraw nominations, if any candidate wishes to. By 2.30 p.m. Nadda was declared the man who stepped into the shoes of Amit Shah.

Though, many believe, Shah will have the last say on all macro decisions like pre poll alliances or top organisational appointments, but will be free from daily monitoring of the organisation. Shah himself wanted this, due to which Nadda was brought in as the working President as key legislations like abrogation of Article 370, Triple Talaq and finally Citizenship Amendment Act meant Shah, who is the home minister as well, had to prioritize his works.

IANS earlier reported that the “world’s largest party” will elect its new President on January 20, as it is an ‘ekadashi’, which is an auspicious day according to the Hindu faith. In Sanskrit, ‘ekadashi’ means 11, as in the eleventh day of two fortnights of the waxing and waning moon. The date was chosen, keeping that in mind, say sources.

The party constitution mandates completion of election of at least 50 per cent of state Presidents for the election of national President to happen. In the last few days, the BJP has completed the election of a slew of state Presidents like in West Bengal, Nagaland among others.

The process of election of the national BJP President is quite elaborate and has been described in detail in the party constitution, which says that the national president shall be elected by an electoral college, comprising members of the national council and the state councils.

“Any 20 members of the electoral college of a state can jointly propose the name of a person, who has been an active member for four terms and has 15 years of membership, for the post of national president. Such joint proposal should come from not less than five states where elections have been completed for the national council. The consent of the candidate is necessary,” it says.

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Muhyiddin Yassin to be new Malay Prime Minister

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Muhyiddin Yassin Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur, Feb 29 : Former Home Affairs Minister Muhyiddin Yassin will be sworn in on Sunday as the eighth Prime Minister of Malaysia, the National Palace said in a statement on Saturday following a week of political power struggles.

The surprise announcement from the Comptroller of the Royal Household, Ahmad Fadil Shamsuddin, said the King had agreed to appoint Muhyiddin as premier after receiving a list of nominees from party leaders and independent MPs, and deeming that he may have the majority support needed in Parliament, reports Efe news.

Muhyiddin will be sworn in at the National Palace at 10.30 a.m. on Sunday.

“(The King) said the appointment of the Prime Minister cannot be delayed for the sake and wellbeing of the nation… He believes this is the best decision for everyone and hopes this puts an end to the political crisis at the moment,” Ahmad Fadil said.

The political crisis was sparked by the stepping-down of Mahathir Mohamad as Prime Minister and Bersatu party chairman on Monday. The King had accepted his resignation and had appointed him as interim premier until a new government was former.

The palace’s announcement of Muhyiddin as the new leader came hours after Mahathir said he had the numbers needed to be the next Prime Minister, and the ruling Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition announced its support for him.

Mahathir’s Bersatu party on Friday nominated its president Muhyiddin as its prime ministerial candidate.

In a twist on Saturday, Muhyiddin also declared himself Bersatu chairman, even though Mahathir returned to that position during the week.

Bersatu’s Secretary-General then released a statement refuting Muhyiddin’s claim, saying the only person who has absolute power to lead the party was chairman Mahathir.

On Saturday morning after a meeting with leaders of the PH coalition, Mahathir said in a statement that he was confident he had “the numbers needed to garner majority support in the Dewan Rakyat (Parliament).”

“I am therefore prepared to stand as prospective candidate for Prime Minister,” he said, adding that this would be conveyed to the King.

In a separate statement, the PH presidential council backed Mahathir, saying it was giving its “full support” to him as prime ministerial candidate.

However, a day earlier, the PH had said it was backing Anwar Ibrahim of the People’s Justice Party for the job.

On Saturday, Anwar went to the King to present a letter of statement that PH was nominating Mahathir over him “to prioritize the nation above personal agenda”, he told reporters, according to local media.

Muhyiddin was backed by Bersatu, and others including Barisan Nasional, which Mahathir and the PH coalition ousted in a shock victory in the March 2018 election after 60 years of rule, along with then-prime minister Najib Razak who now faces 1MDB corruption allegations.

Anwar had been the promised successor to Mahathir after the two old foes banded together ahead of the 2018 polls.

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Sajid Javid stepped down to avoid humiliation

He had then cleared absconding businessman Vijay Mallya’s extradition to India in February last year following the decision by the Westminister Magistrates Court in December 2018.

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Sajid Javid

London, Feb 29 : Sajid Javid has revealed that he decided to resign as the UK Chancellor instead of being “humiliated” by sacking all his aides at a Cabinet reshuffle, a media report said on Saturday.

On February 13, Javid resigned as the Chancellor of the Exchequer over differences with Prime Minister Boris Johnson in a cabinet reshuffle. He was offered to retain the post if he fired all his advisors but declined.

He was replaced by Indian-descent Rishi Sunak, who is married to Akshata, the daughter of Infosys co-founder N.R. Narayana Murthy.

“It was really hard. I wanted to do a budget but when the Prime Minister said to me these are the conditions, in my mind it was black and white,” the Daily Mirror quoted Javid as saying to the Times newspaper.

“Even if I had entertained the idea for a second I would be absolutely humiliated afterwards.”

Javid said that other Cabinet members hastily congratulated him after defending the right of Ministers and telling him “well done”, while thanking him for speaking on all their behalf.

“I loved my job. I have wanted to be Chancellor since I knew who Nigel Lawson was when I was a kid and the only person that believed I could ever become chancellor was my dad. He never got to see it,” he told the Times.

Javid further said that he had “no option” but to leave the Cabinet when he was told to sack his advisers, and he still has to unpack boxes after moving from the seat of British power in Downing Street.

Pakistani-descent Javid, who became the first Asian to become a Cabinet Minister when he was made Secretary of State of Culture, Media and Sports in the David Cameron government in 2014 after stints as Economic Secretary to the Treasury (2012-13) and Financial Secretary (2013-14), was earlier the Home Secretary in the the Theresa May government.

He had then cleared absconding businessman Vijay Mallya’s extradition to India in February last year following the decision by the Westminister Magistrates Court in December 2018.

Javid, who ran for Conservative Party leadership after May quit but lost to Johnson, was made Chancellor by the latter.

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Delhi govt ill informed about Kanhaiya case: Chidambaram slams Kejriwal govt

The Delhi government on Friday had granted sanction to the Delhi Police to prosecute former JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar and others in the 2016 sedition case.

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P Chidambaram

New Delhi, Feb 29 Senior Congress leader and former Finance Minister P. Chidambaram has slammed the Arvind Kejriwal government for the go-ahead to the police to prosecute former Jawaharlal Nehru University students’ union president Kanhaiya Kumar and nine others in a sedition case of 2016.

Chidambaram called the Delhi government “ill-informed”. “Delhi Government is no less ill-informed than the central government in its understanding of sedition law”, Chiadambaram said in a tweet.

He also criticized the Delhi government for giving the sanction. “I strongly disapprove of the sanction granted to prosecute Mr Kanhaiya Kumar and others for alleged offences under sections 124A and 120B of IPC”, he added.

The Delhi government on Friday had granted sanction to the Delhi Police to prosecute former JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar and others in the 2016 sedition case.

The Delhi Police Special Cell on February 19 wrote to the Delhi Home Secretary requesting to “expedite” the process of grant of sanction in the JNU sedition case involving former JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar.

In a letter written by Deputy Commissioner of Police, Special Cell, Pramod Singh Kushwaha to the Deputy Secretary, Home, he said, “It is therefore requested to expedite the process to accord prosecution sanction under Section 196 CrPC as required for offence under Chapter VI of the IPC i.e. Section 124A IPC.”

A Delhi court had asked the Delhi government to file a status report relating to the issue of pendency of sanction in the case to prosecute student leader Kanhaiya Kumar and others.

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