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No muzzling of freedom of expression: Minister

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There will be no restrictions on the freedom of expression on writers and intellectuals, said Delhi Culture Minister Kapil Mishra while inaugurating the fourth edition of the ‘Delhi Literature Festival’.

The three-day literature festival started from Friday evening at Dilli Haat. The festival will culminate on January 10.

“I am assuring that there will be no muzzling of freedom of writers in Delhi. Our government will support writers and artists in expressing their thoughts freely,” Mishra said.

“Only writers can take up cudgels against the prevailing situation in the country. The walls need to be broken,” the minister said.

“Those who can understand why stones started arriving in January 2016 in Ayodhya, should write openly about it,” he added, exhorting writers to write freely to expose truths.

Taking a jibe at the centre, Mishra said why singers like Ghulam Ali were stopped when the Pathankot attack could not be averted.

Pakistani singer Ghulam Ali was not allowed to perform in the country. Those who should have been stopped have managed to come to Pathankot, and they still have no idea how many terrorists came to the town. We need to change this, Mishra said.

The minister also said the social media has helped budding writers to reach out to the readers.

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Gujarat govt renames ‘dragon fruit’ as kamalam

It should be noted that the lotus is the symbol of the BJP and the state BJP headquarters in Gandhinagar is also named ‘Shri Kamalam’.

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Gandhinagar Jan 20: Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, while interacting with the media on Tuesday, said that the government has applied for a patent to change the nomenclature of dragon fruit to ‘Kamalam’.

According to the CM, the word dragon for the fruit sounded inappropriate and so the Gujarat government had decided for the fruit to be called as Kamalam.

While interacting with the media on Tuesday during the launch of the Chief Minister Horticulture Development Mission, Rupani said, “We have applied for the patent of the Dragon fruit to be called as Kamalam. But as of now, we the Gujarat government have decided to call the fruit as Kamalam.”

“Even though the fruit is known as dragon fruit, it doesn’t sound appropriate. The word Kamalam is a Sanskrit word and the fruit does have the shape of the lotus, so we have decided to call it Kamalam, and there’s nothing political about it,” Rupani added.

According to the CM, the fruit has long since been grown as a form of cactus in the country. “Nobody has to be alarmed by the word Kamalam,” Rupani added.

It should be noted that the lotus is the symbol of the BJP and the state BJP headquarters in Gandhinagar is also named ‘Shri Kamalam’.

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Another fake social media news racket on temple attack busted

“Accused Peraka Venkateswara Rao, 35, was convicted in the case and sentenced to eight months in jail on June 23, 2015,” the official said.

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Fake News

Amaravati, Jan 20: Police in Andhra Pradesh’s West Godavari district on Tuesday busted another fake news racket regarding temple attack in Eluru town and clarified that the Anjaneya Swamy idol incident was an old one.

“It came to our notice that some persons are using this 2014 incident as propaganda material to spread fake news on the social media,” said a district police official.

Police later registered a case under Sections 153-A and 295-A of the Indian Penal Code.

Police clarified that the Anjaneya Swamy idol incident occurred in 2014 and a case was registered then under Sections 295 and 427 of the IPC at Eluru town police station.

“Accused Peraka Venkateswara Rao, 35, was convicted in the case and sentenced to eight months in jail on June 23, 2015,” the official said.

Meanwhile, Prakasam district police arrested one more person for allegedly dubbing the damage due to corrosion to the Singarayikonda temple arch idols as an ‘attack’.

In this particular case, police identified 33 persons for spreading false information on the social media, of whom six were arrested from different places in the southern state.

Prakasam district Superintendent of Police Siddharth Kaushal on Tuesday visited multiple places to strengthen surveillance system, 24×7 beat and patrol systems for the security of all temples and religious places.

He met with members of village and mandal defence committees and gave suggestions on their security.

On Tuesday evening, Director General of Police Goutam Sawang held a videoconference with all districts police officials over the temple incidents in the state.

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Gurugram: Farmers to hold tractor rally ‘rehearsal’ on Wednesday

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Tractor March Delhi

Gurugram, Jan 20: The Sanyukt Kisan Morcha in Gurugram has announced that they will conduct a tractor rally ‘rehearsal’ in Gurugram on Wednesday ahead of Republic Day, in support of the farmers’ protests against the three farm laws.

SKM president Chaudhary Santokh Singh said that on Wednesday the rehearsal of the tractor rally will begin from the Bajghera flyover and will end at the protest site on the Delhi-Jaipur highway.

About 100 tractors will take part in the rehearsal. All tractors will have Morcha members present and will carry the national flag.

“The central government is aware of the flaws in the agricultural laws but is not ready to accept its mistake and is continuously harassing the innocent farmers at several borders of the national capital. The government must let go of its arrogant behaviour and roll back the black laws,” Singh said.

He said that on January 26, the farmers will join Republic Day by affixing the tricolour in front of their tractors and will proceed towards the national capital if permitted.

The protesting farmers said that it will be good if the Centre repeals the farm laws immediately, because the farmer movement has become a mass movement and people of other classes have also started supporting the farmers.

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