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Smriti Irani again targeted in Lok Sabha

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Lok Sabha was in chaos as  opposition members forced Speaker Sumitra Mahajan to allow them to speak on their notice for Privilege Motion against  Smriti Irani.

HRD Minister Smriti Irani was again in the line of fire in Lok Sabha with Congress and Left members accusing her of using the House to “mislead” the nation with her “totally blatant untruth” during her reply last week on Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula’s suicide in the Hyderabad Central University.

“You raise slogans against the Speaker… Whatever you have done today is not good,” said an anguished Mahajan as she allowed them to speak. At the same time, she said this should not be seen as a precedent.

The Speaker relented after TMC leader Sudip Bandhyopadhyaya urged her to allow Congress members to speak on the matter.

K C Venugopal (Cong) referred to Irani’s statement in which she had said that no doctor was allowed near Vemula after his suicide attempt. He cited the subsequent response of the Hyderabad health official to claim that she made “false” comments.

He added that a book which Irani said was allowed by the then HRD Minister Kapil Sibal was discontinued in 2001, long before he became a minister under the UPA government.

The Lok Sabha was on Wednesday adjourned briefly following uproar by the opposition over an alleged inflammatory statement by Union Minister Ram Shankar Katheria in Agra.

The Lok Sabha was adjourned at 12.20 p.m. and the proceedings resumed at 12.30 p.m.

Katheria had on Sunday attended a condolence meeting held for VHP worker Arun Mahaur, who was shot dead in Agra on Thursday.

At the meeting, he said: “This conspiracy that is being hatched against the Hindu community, we have to be be alert to recognize it and strengthen ourselves.”

Katheria represents Agra constituency in the Lok Sabha and is minister of state in the Human Resource Development (HRD) ministry. BJP MP from Fatehpur Sikri, Babu Lal had also attended the condolence meeting.

India

Indian, Chinese soldiers clash at Naku La, many injured

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India China Border Sikkim
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Indian and Chinese soldiers clashed at Naku La in North Sikkim last week with many injuries reported, said a government source. The situation is said to be under control though as of now.

Naku La, incidentally, was one of the original face-off sites, along with Pangong Tso, Galwan, Gogra, Hot Springs, in early-May last year.TRENDING NEWS

The government source said the clash took place three days ago. It happened while both the countries’ government and military were readying for another round of talks to resolve border dispute along the 3,488 kilometre-long Line of Actual Control.

On Sunday, India and China held a 16-hour long marathon military dialogue that eneded at after 2 a.m. on Monday to resolve the ongoing nineth month long border dispute and thinning of forces along the LAC.

The ninth Corps Commander level talks between both the countries took place at the Moldo Meeting point in Ladakh region. It had started at 10.30 a.m. on Sunday and ended at 2.30 a.m. on Monday.

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India, China hold 16-hours long talks

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 India and China held 16 hours-long marathon military dialogue to resolve an ongoing border dispute and thinning of forces along the Line of Actual Control in Eastern Ladakh, government official said on Monday. The details of the meeting are yet to be known.

It started at 10.30 am on Sunday and ended at 2.30 a.m. on Monday. Lieutenant General P.G.K. Menon, the Corps Commander of Leh-based HQ 14 Corps, led the Indian delegation. India has sought complete disengagement and withdrawing of forces from the disputed areas. 

The military commanders to convey the details of the meeting to Prime Minister Office. The Ministry of External Affairs representative was also part of dialogue. The eight Corps Commander level talks had taken place happened on November 6.

Though the talks had ended in a deadlock, both countries had agreed to maintain dialogue and communication through military and diplomatic channels, and take forward the discussions, push for the settlement of other outstanding issues, so as to jointly maintain peace and tranquillity in the border areas. 

Indian Army chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane earlier this month said the forces are ready for a long haul along the Line of Actual Control but hoped for an amicable solution in its nine month long conflict with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army. “

We are prepared to hold our ground where we are for as long as it takes to achieve our national goals and interest,” General Naravane had said. Since no thinning of troops happened the soldiers of both the countries are poised to remain exposed to minus 20 degrees Celsius. 

On August 30, India had occupied critical mountain heights on the southern bank of the Pangong Lake like Rechin La, Rezang La, Mukpari, and Tabletop that were unmanned till now.

India also made some deployments near the Blacktop. The movement was carried out after the Chinese tried to make a provocative military move. Now, dominance at these 13 peaks allows India to dominate Spangur Gap under Chinese control and also the Moldo garrison on the Chinese side. 

At the height of the standoff, in a violence face-ff last year between the two sides at Galwan Valley, India had lost 20 of her soldiers, while the Chinese side an unknown number.

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Barricades to open on Jan 26 as police allow Tractor Rally

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The Delhi Police on Sunday said that after several round of talks with the farmers groups, it has permitted the tractor rally inside Delhi on January 26.

Police has said that the barricades would be lifted at Singhu, Tikri and Gazipur borders on January 26 after the Republic Day parade is over and the farmers would be allowed to enter upto 100 kilometers within Delhi with their tractors in a circular path on the routes discussed with the farmers.

The route specified is from Singhu Border to Sanjay Gandhi Transport Nagar, Kanjhawala, Bawana to Auchadi. From Tikri border, it will be to Nangloi, Najafgarh, Jharoda, Dhansa, Badli and the KMP and from Gazipur border to Apsara border to Hapur Road.

“We have told the farmers that the rally would start once the Republic Day parade is over. We expect with the cooperation of the farmers the rally would be peaceful,” Special Commissioner of Police, Intelligence, Deependra Pathak, said.

However, the police said that they are on alert after intelligence inputs that various Twitter handles operating from across the border are active to disrupt the rally on January 26.

“According to our intelligence input, 308 Twitter handles have been generated from Pakistan to disrupt the rally to create disturbance. We are also concerned about the security of the rally given the threat perception,” he added.

Meanwhile, several batches of farmers from Punjab and Haryana set out on their tractor-trolleys and other vehicles to take part in the proposed tractor rally on January 26 in the national capital. Tractor-trolleys have now become a common sight at the Singhu border as the farmers have started bringing in the tractors to the protest site from villages in Punjab for the proposed rally.

Thousands of farmers from Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and other states have been protesting at multiple border points of Delhi at Singhu, Tikri and Gazipur borders since November-end. They are demanding a repeal of the three central farm laws passed by Parliament in September last year.

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