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Narmada Bachao Andolan back on indefinite protest

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Medha Patkar

Bhopal, Nov 17 : For a second time in just over two months, Narmada Bachao Andolan leader Medha Patkar and many persons affected by the Sardar Sarovar Dam have launched an indefinite protest demanding relief. The protest that began on Saturday has continued after the state government failed to put on record any assurances to help the oustees by bringing pressure on the Gujarat government.

“We want the people in MP affected by Sardar Sarovar Dam built in Gujarat should be provided relief, and rehabilitated according to the book,” Patkar said on Sunday evening. The protests would continue, the NBA said.

“Those ousted are living a miserable life. We will continue our protest till our demands are met. Hundreds of families have been ruined by the filling of Sardar Sarovar Dam in the catchment area of the reservoir in Madhya Pradesh,” she said.

Most protesters spent the chill dewy Saturday night under the sky, wrapping themselves up with blankets, making a poignant sight.

The previous BJP government had, on oath, presented a misleading picture of rehabilitation efforts before the Supreme Court to help Gujarat government to fill up the Sardar Sarovar dam reservoir, Patkar said, adding that the fate of 32,000 families in Madhya Pradesh has been hanging in balance due to previous Shivraj Singh Chouhan government’s “deceit” and Gujarat government’s “insensitivity”.

A much larger area than projected in the MP government’s plans has come under submergence. As a result, the areas marked for rehabilitation have also been inundated, ruling out resettlement of the project-affected people.

The Kamal Nath government had in September agreed to review the rehabilitation issue afresh as the pre-condition for the Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) leader Patkar to end her indefinite fast. Patkar, who had ended her fast on September 3, held talks with the state government and secured assurances for early resolutions to the issue. Things have, however, not gone according to the activists’ understanding with the government.

The NBA activists have been in touch with the authorities to expedite the rehabilitation process without further losses to the oustees. The government, on its part, is prepared to persuade the Gujarat government but said it is not in a position to offer any written assurance.

“Gujarat Chief Minister and all officers raised the level of water in the dam to 139 metre height only for the sake of celebrating Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s birthday. We damn the celebrations on his birthday. Wish him a long life. But he should understand his duty and responsibility to let people live,” Patkar had said after Gujarat government ignored the Madhya Pradesh government’s request to keep the reservoir level lower than 139 metres.

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India

Mosque turns venue for Hindu wedding

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Hindu wedding in Masjid

New Delhi, Jan 20 : An unusual story of a wedding is doing the rounds on internet in which a couple tied the knot at a mosque in Alappuzha district in Kerala on Sunday as per Hindu rituals.

The news came out after the Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan took to Twitter to congratulate and appreciate the couple for upholding such a beautiful example of religious harmony.

Vijayan wrote: “An example of unity from Kerala. The Cheravally Muslim Jamat Mosque hosted a Hindu wedding of Asha & Sharath. The Mosque came to their help after Asha’s mother sought help from them. Congratulations to the newlyweds, families, Mosque authorities & the people of Cheravally.”

The tweet went viral and netizens reacted to the post with heartwarming gestures and blessings.

A user tweeted: “I am glad that Kerala has such amity with vegetables and flowers not beef eating tourism promoted by the Government. God bless the couple.”

“Kerala sets the vision of future India,” wrote another user.

A post read, “Keep it up Keralians. Now we know that Kerala is not only the most literate state but also the most educated state.”

A Tweeple remarked, “After learning of such a beautiful tale of Hindu-Muslim unity, Hindutva thugs of @RSSorg and @BJP4India won’t be able to sleep tonight.”

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India

Consumer confidence plunges 7.3% in Jan 2020: Report

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National debt under Modi govt surges

New Delhi, Jan 20 : Consumer sentiment has nosedived by 7.3 percentage points in January 2020, according to the latest India Primary Consumer Sentiment Index (PCSI), as measured by Thomson Reuters, in partnership with Ipsos.

The major cause for this pessimism is the depleting confidence around personal spends and investments. Even confidence about the economy is low, though confidence around jobs has slightly moved up.

“Inflation and prices of essential commodities have been going up due to the US-Iran standoff and uncertainty around the US-China trade war. It has jacked up oil prices and the cost of living. Also around this time, IT planning is a strain on incomes. Additionally, global slowdown has impacted India’s economic growth as well, as economies are becoming increasingly interdependent,” says Amit Adarkar, India CEO & APAC Operations Director, Ipsos.

The monthly PCSI, which is driven by the aggregation of the four weighted sub-indices, has plummeted for at least 3 of the 4 sub indices. The four sub-indices are: Current Conditions Index; Expectations Index; Investment Index; and Jobs Index.

While the PCSI Employment Confidence (“Jobs”) Sub-Index has slightly moved upwards by 0.5 percentage points, the PCSI Economic Expectations (“Expectations”) Sub Index, has significantly declined by 5.1 percentage points. The PCSI Investment Climate (“Investment”) Sub-Index has plunged by 12.9 percentage points; and the PCSI Current Personal Financial Conditions (“Current Conditions”) Sub-Index has also majorly dropped by 12.5 percentage points, over the last month.

The findings have come out from an Ipsos online poll conducted between December 20, 2019-January 3, 2020. For this survey, a sample of 500 adults from Ipsos’ India online panel aged 16-64 was interviewed online.

The Thomson Reuters/Ipsos India Primary Consumer Sentiment Index (PCSI), ongoing since 2010, is a monthly national survey of consumer attitudes on the current and future state of local economies, personal finance situations, savings and confidence to make large investments.

Ipsos Public Affairs is a non-partisan, objective, survey-based research practice made up of seasoned professionals. It conducts strategic research initiatives for a diverse number of American and international organisations, based not only on public opinion research, but elite stakeholder, corporate and media opinion research.

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Peace party will file curative petition on Tuesday against Ayodhya verdict

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Supreme Court

New Delhi, Jan 20: The Peace Party of India will file a curative petition in the Supreme Court on Tuesday against the top court’s verdict in the Ayodhya case.

Earlier also the Supreme Court has already dismissed 18 review petition in this case.
Peace party president Dr. Ayub will file curative petition in Supreme court on Tuesday.

All review petitions filed against the Supreme Court’s decision in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute case of Ayodhya were dismissed on 12 December.

In its Ayodhya verdict on November 9 last year, the Supreme Court had paved the way for construction of Ram temple.

A bench of five judges of the Supreme Court said that there is no merit in the petitions.
The Apex court had decided to give the disputed land to Ramlala to build the Ram temple.

A total of 18 petitions were filed for review of the November 9 decision of a special bench of five judges of the Supreme Court in the Ayodhya case.

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