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I will not contest polls: Prashant Kishor

Chief Minister Nitush Kumar, who is also the JD-U president, was expected to soon send Kishor, 41, to Rajya Sabha.

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Prashant Kishor

Patna, Oct 23 : Election strategist-turned-politician Prashant Kishor, who is the new national Vice President of Bihar’s ruling JD-U, said on Tuesday he will not contest any elections for the next 10 years to concentrate on bringing the state out of the “undeveloped” tag.

He would aim all his efforts to strengthen the Janata Dal-United party that he joined in September, Kishor said ending all speculation as he addressed the youth members of his party.

“I will not contest any elections, including for the Lok Sabha or the Rajya Sabha, for the next 10 years… and serve Bihar. My goal is to work to help Bihar get into the 10 developed states of the country,” said the founder of the Indian Political Action Committee (IPAC), who was appointed JD-U’s No.2 on October 16.

There was speculation in political circles here that the former BJP poll strategist, who played a role in Narendra Modi’s party securing an absolute majority in the 2014 general elections, would contest 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

Chief Minister Nitush Kumar, who is also the JD-U president, was expected to soon send Kishor, 41, to Rajya Sabha.

Instead, Kishor said he would “work on the strategy to ensure a strong JD-U by attracting youth and students into its fold” and put his entire time and energy into strengthening the party in Bihar and on the national level.

Kishor’s elevation by Nitish Kumar was viewed as a political masterstroke by the Chief Minister, who plans to put his best foot forward ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha polls

“In JD-U and outside, Prashant Kishor is considered close to Nitish Kumar. More than anyone he enjoys trust and confidence of the Chief Minister,” a senior party leader said.

The former UN official, who founded the Citizens for Accountable Governance (CAG), had also successfully ran the campaign of the Nitish Kumar-led Grand Alliance during the 2015 Bihar Assembly election.

The Grand Alliance comprised the JD-U, Lalu Prasad’s Rashtriya Janata Dal and the Congress and it had humbled the BJP-led alliance.

In last two days, Kishor has been busy meeting and interacting with members of the JD-U’s youth and students wing. He has asked each one of them to enlist 200 more active members.

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Central team visits drought-hit districts in Karnataka

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Bengaluru, Nov 17 : A 10-member inter-ministerial central team (IMCT) began visiting 17 drought-hit districts across Karnataka for spot assessment of the losses incurred by farmers and the people, an official said on Saturday.

“The 10-member team, divided into three groups are on a three-day tour of the 17 drought-hit districts in the state to assess the grim situation arising out of deficit monsoon rains,” a senior revenue official told IANS.

The team, led by Department of Agriculture Cooperation and Farmers Welfare Joint Secretary Amitabh Gautam, has been split into three groups to visit the affected districts simultaneously.

The first group is visiting Ballari, Davangere, Raichur and Yadgir; second group Bagalkote, Belagavi, Dharwad, Gadag and Vijapura; and third group Chikaballapura, Chitradurga, Kolara and Tumukuru.

“The central team will meet state officials of the departments concerned on Monday in Bengaluru for discussing the drought situation in the state for the report to be submitted to the Prime Minister’s Office,” the official said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 10 assured a state delegation, led by Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy, in New Delhi that he would send the team to assess the damage caused by drought in 17 interior and northern districts of the state.

“The delegation sought Rs 2,000 crore package for rehabilitation and rebuilding of infrastructure in the affected regions in the state from the central government,” said the official.

A cabinet sub-committee assessed the losses due to drought and sent a report to the central government for relief aid in October.

State Revenue Minister R.V. Deshpande, Public Works Department Minister H.D; Revanna, Water Resources Minister D.K. Shivakumar and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Byre Gowda were part of the delegation.

The Chief Minister also told Modi that half the state’s area faced drought due to weak monsoon.

The state has been facing drought conditions during the last 13 years. As per preliminary estimates, 15 lakh hectares of agricultural and horticultural crops have been affected, with an estimated loss of Rs 8,000 crore.

“There has been a prolonged dry spell in September, which resulted in about 50 per cent crop production loss,” Deshpande said earlier.

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IndiGo employee commits suicide at guest house in Gurugram

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New Delhi, Nov 17: A 35-year-old IndiGo airline employee allegedly committed suicide at a guest house in Gurugram’s Sushant Lok on Friday.

The deceased has been identified as Mausami Gautam, who hailed from Assam. She was working with the airlines’ security wing. Her body was found hanging from a ceiling fan at the guest house.

The autopsy will be conducted today after the arrival of her family members.

Meanwhile, police has registered a case and an investigation is underway.

IANS

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Bihar: 5 injured in explosion at Nawada medicine shop

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Bihar, Nov 17: At least five people were injured in an explosion at a Bihar medicine shop on Saturday. 

The explosion took place at a makeshift traditional medicine shop in Nawada district’s Rajauli. The police investigation is underway.

WeForNews

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