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PM Narendra Modi in UP,to launch solar powered boats, provide free LPG to BPL families

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on Sunday launch the Rs.8,000 crore scheme to provide 5 crore free cooking gas connections to Below Poverty Line (BPL) families from Uttar Pradesh’s Ballia.

During his daylong visit to Uttar Pradesh,Modi will also visit Varanasi, his parliamentary constituency, where he will distribute e-rickshaws and e-boats. The prime minister will also visit Gyan Pravah – Centre for Cultural Studies and Research and hold a meeting with top officials.
The Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana, to be run essentially using the money saved from 1.13 crore cooking gas users voluntarily giving up their subsidies, aims to provide cooking gas connections to 5 crore women beneficiaries from BPL families over the next three years, said informed sources.
These e-boats will not only reduce pollution, but will also bring down operational costs, thereby enabling higher incomes for those who earn their livelihoods through such boats on the river Ganga, an official said.

“He (Modi) will visit Gyan Pravah – Centre for Cultural Studies and Research at Varanasi and hold a meeting with prominent citizens in Varanasi,” an official source said.

The Prime Minister will also launch a scheme for environment-friendly E-Boats at the famous Assi Ghat.

These E-boats will not only reduce pollution, but will also bring down the operational costs, thereby enabling higher incomes for those who earn their livelihoods through such boats on river Ganga, the official source said.

“Since the launch, 1.13 crore people have given-up LPG subsidies and are buying cooking gas at market price,” Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan had said earlier.

Maharashtra tops the list with 16.44 lakh consumers giving up subsidies. Uttar Pradesh saw nearly 13 lakh users give up subsidies, followed by Delhi (7.26 lakh). Prime Minister’s home state of Gujarat was way down the list with just 4.2 lakh giving up subsidies. Pradhan’s home state of Odisha was even lower at 1.3 lakh.

“Five states of Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu account for roughly half of the people who have given up LPG subsidies,” Pradhan said.

Consumers are currently entitled to 12 cylinders of 14.2 kg each or 34 bottles of 5 kg each in a year at subsidised rates. A subsidised 14.2-kg cylinder is currently available at Rs 419.13 per bottle in Delhi while the 5-kg pack costs Rs 155.

Market-priced LPG is available at Rs 509.50 per 14.2-kg cylinder. Giving up subsidised LPG will help cut the government’s subsidy bill, which was at Rs 30,000 crore on the fuel last fiscal.

Nearly Rs 5,000 crore of subsidy saved through the campaign is being used to provide LPG connection to the poor. “We have released 60 lakh new connection to poor in the last one year,” he said.

The scheme provides a financial support of Rs 1,600 for each LPG connection to the BPL households. The identification of eligible BPL families will be made in consultation with the State Governments and the Union Territories, he said. Pradhan said the country currently has 16.64 crore active LPG consumers.

Of the 21 million tonne LPG requirement, nearly 40 per cent is imported and this will go up as demand rises by double digit with new connections.

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NCP MLA Bharat Bhalke dies due to post-COVID complications at Pune’s Ruby Hospital

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Bharat Bhalke

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) MLA Bharat Bhalke passed away on Saturday at Pune’s Ruby Hospital. He was admitted for post-COVID complications and was kept on a ventilator since Friday.

Bhalke was the MLA from Pandharpur-Mangalwedha assembly constituency from Solapur district. He was tested Covid-19 positive on October 30. He recovered, but later developed kidney-related problems.

Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope expressed grief over Bhalke’s demise. “The news of the death of Bharat Bhalke, MLA of NCP’s Pandharpur-Mangalvedha assembly constituency is very shocking. With his demise, an influential orator and dedicated leader passed away. I share the grief of the Bhalke family. A heartfelt tribute,” the Maharashtra Minister tweeted.

Bhalke was a third time MLA from Malshiras Pandharpur assembly constituency. He quit the Congress in 2019 and tried to join the BJP, but was unable to get a seat. He contested the election on NCP ticket and won it.

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Delhi govt to provide essential amenities to farmers at Nirankari Maidan

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farmers at Sindhu border

New Delhi: Farmers from Punjab have been allowed to demonstrate at the Nirankari grounds in Delhi’s Burari to protest against the Centre’s agricultural laws. At the same time, the Delhi government has decided to provide basic facilities to the farmers at Nirankari grounds, beginning with drinking water.

The Arvind Kejriwal government in Delhi has asked its MLA and Delhi Jal Board vice-chairman Raghav Chadha to take stock of the situation by reaching Burari.

The Delhi government said in a press briefing, “Raghav Chadha, Vice Chairman, Delhi Jal Board, will visit the Nirankari grounds, Burari on Friday evening. Proper arrangements for drinking water will be made for farmers who are protesting at the approved protest site. Water tankers are being deployed here. To oversee the preparations, DJB vice-president Raghav Chadha is going to the dharna site.”

Chadha told IANS, “Farmers have a right to speak and cannot be treated like criminals. Our farmer brothers and sisters are reaching Delhi from all corners of the country. They have come here to protest the black farm laws passed by the Modi government. Now they have got permission to come to the Nirankari grounds. Whatever they need here, whether it is water, food, toilets, the Arvind Kejriwal government will provide it. All the officers and MLAs are keeping an eye on the arrangements.”

The Delhi Police had sought permission to convert nine stadia in Delhi into temporary jails. However, the Kejriwal government has rejected the proposal. The Delhi government has issued an official statement supporting the farmers. The state government says the farmers demands are justified and they have the right to protest.

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said, “The Centre’s three farming laws are anti-farmer. Instead of withdrawing these laws, farmers are being prevented from protesting peacefully, water canons are being turned on them. This atrocity on farmers is completely wrong. Peaceful demonstrations are their constitutional right.”

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Farmers refuse to leave Sindhu border as agitation ‘could weaken’

The meeting of the farmers at the Sindhu border was still going on on Friday evening.

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farmers at Sindhu border

New Delhi, Nov 27 : Even as the Delhi Police on Friday allowed farmers from Punjab, Haryana and elsewhere to hold a peaceful protest against the controversial Agriculture Bills at the Sant Nirankari ground in the capital’s Burari area, the farmers refused to leave Delhi-Haryana Sindhu border fearing that their protest would be “weakened”.

Delhi Police made the announcement after using tear gas shells and water cannons on the protesting farmers, and undertaking a baton charge to disperse them as they tried to enter Delhi.

Gurpreet Singh, a farmer associated with Bhartiya Kisan Union Ekta in Punjab, told IANS, “We are holding talks with our representatives as of now to decide whether we will got to Burari ground or not.”

Singh said that most of the farmers don’t want to go at Burari ground and that is the reason why they are all are sitting here.

“Till the time the government does not accept our three demands, we will sit here,” he asserted.

Singh said that the farmers have been demanding the revocation of the three Agriculture Bills that were passed in Parliament in September this year, guarantee the minimum support price to farmers and roll back the fine on stubble burning.

Another farmer said that All India Kisan Khet Mazdur Sangthan’s leadership are also sitting on the Sindhu border here and they too don’t want to go to Burari for protests.

The meeting of the farmers at the Sindhu border was still going on on Friday evening.

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