09:56 Tripura CM’s latest gaffe: Tagore returned Nobel in protest : If not anything else, Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Deb has been consistent about being a headline grabber. Not for initiating development projects in the BJP’s newly-won bastion, but for his bloopers.
In a video being circulated on social media, the 46-year-old chief minister is seen telling his audience that “Rabindranath Tagore returned his Nobel Prize in protest against the British.”
Deb made these remarks at a function to mark the birth anniversary of the poet.
Fact is Tagore accept the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1913 because it was bestowed by Sweden. However, he returned his Knighthood in protest against the Jalianwalla Bagh massacre in 1919.
Deb’s gaffes have become an almost daily embarrassment for the BJP since he commented last month that “Internet and satellite communication existed during the Mahabharata era”. He never retracted that statement.
He then questioned the crowning of Diana Hayden as Miss World in 1997, saying she was “not an Indian beauty like Aishwarya Rai”=, but after the flak he faced, he apologised.
The Chief Minister also stated that mechanical engineers should not opt for civil services, but civil engineers should.
Then there was the one about how graduates shouldn’t run after government jobs, but should start paan shop instead. Or how young men should breed cows and explore a career in dairy.
Reports had said that he had been summoned by prime minister telling him to zip his lip but clearly that hasn’t worked.
Image: Tripura CM Biplab Kumar Deb at the Rabindra Jayanti celebrations at Agartala on May 8. Courtesy: @BjpBiplab
09:37 Trump to seek complete irreversible denuclearisation of Korean Peninsula: WH: In his meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore on June 12, US President Donald Trump would seek a complete, irreversible and verifiable denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula, the White House has said.
Hours after Trump announced the location and date of what is being billed as the historic US-N Korea summit, the White House cautioned against any new provocative behaviour by Pyongyang.
Such a move might force the US to halt the meeting, a presidential spokesman said yesterday.
“Our policy is to ensure the complete, irreversible and verifiable denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula. And that’s what he’s going to be seeking,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah told reporters aboard the Air Force One travelling to Indiana.
“We have a month and several days. And there are a number of things — provocative actions, for example, from North Korea would not be received well. All I’ll say is that the meeting has been agreed to, but obviously it could be halted for any number of reasons,” Shah said with a note of caution to the North Koreans.
Shah added that Singapore was selected as the venue for the historic meeting because it had political ties with both the countries. “Singapore has a relationship with both the United States and North Korea. They can ensure both the President’s and Kim Jong-un’s security, as well as provide neutrality,” he added.
“Singaporeans have been gracious up until now and also in the past. In fact, on a historical note, the first meeting between the leaders of China and Taiwan took place in Singapore some years back,” Shah noted. As of now, only one day has been kept for the meeting between Trump and Kim Jong-un, he said, adding that planning was still in progress. — PTI
09:20 Jinnah was a ‘mahapurush’, contributed to India’s freedom struggle: BJP MP:
Bharatiya Janata Party Savitri Bai Phule, who has recently taken a rebellious stance against her party over various issues, today praised Muhammad Ali Jinnah, hailing him as a ‘mahapurush’ who had contributed in India’s freedom struggle.
“Jinnah was a great person who had contributed towards India’s freedom struggle. He was great, he is and will remain so,” the Bahraich MP said.
Recently, Phule has made several remarks against the party line and has condemned the state and the Central government for the treatment of Dalits. Last week, she called politicians visit to Dalit households an “insult” to the people. Her comments came in the backdrop of a controversy over the recent visit to a Dalit home by a UP government minister belonging to her own party. Other saffron party leaders too have also visited Dalit households in recent past.
Her recent remarks come as a controversy erupted over a portrait of Muhammad Ali Jinnah on the Aligarh Muslim University campus. Aligarh MP Satish Gautam had written AMU Vice Chancellor Tariq Mansoor, raising objection over Pakistan founder’s picture on the walls of the AMU students union office.
08:53 PM Modi in Nepal today, to flag off bus from Sita’s birthplace to Ayodhya:
After weeks of hectic campaigning in Karnataka, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will reach Nepal this morning for a two-day visit.
This is his third visit to the country as Prime Minister.
PM Modi will land in the temple town of Janakpur, 225 km from capital Kathmandu. He described his visit to the Himalayan nation as a reflection of his government’s commitment to a “neighbourhood first” policy.
PM Modi’s visit comes a month after Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli visited India last month.
Today, PM Modi will flag off a tourist bus from Janakpuri to Ayodhya. Apart from holding meetings with the Nepal PM and other leaders, PM Modi will visit three Hindu pilgrimage centres on his two-day visit.
08:21 Did not pay North Koreans for release of prisoners: Trump:
The United States did not pay any money to the North Koreans for the release of its citizens held as a prisoners, US President Donald Trump said as he slammed the previous Obama administration for paying $1.8 billion in cash after the Iranian nuclear deal.
“North Korean leader Kim Jong-un did a great service to himself and to his country by doing this. But those hostages came out with respect, we didn’t pay for them,” he said.
“We are going to set the table. We are going to make a great deal, for the world, for North Korea, for South Korea, for Japan, for China,” he added.
The Obama administration had paid $1.8 billion for hostages, Trump claimed in an apparent reference to a January 2016 deal between the US and Iran in which the United States agreed to pay $1.7 billion to settle a case related to the sale of military equipment before the Iranian revolution. Simultaneously, Iran had released five American prisoners. The then Obama White House strongly refuted reports that it was a ransom.
Trump said his meeting with Kim Jong-un would be a great success.
“I think it’s going to be a very big success. But my attitude is: And if it isn’t, it isn’t,” he told his supporters.
“You have to have that because you don’t know. We’re not going to walk into an Iran deal,” Trump added.
08:00 Crucial meeting of top judges today on Justice Joseph elevation:
The Supreme Court collegium, or a group of five most-senior judges, is meeting at 1 pm today to take a call on Justice KM Joseph’s elevation to the top court that was rejected by the government in April.
This is the collegium’s second meeting to firm up its response to the centre’s decision that has set up a face-off between the judiciary and the executive and has been described as an attack on the independence of the judiciary.
Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad denies that the centre’s decision had anything to do with the Uttarakhand high court Chief Justice’s 2016 verdict cancelling President’s rule in the state.
Prasad calls it a legitimate exercise of the powers granted by the top court in several rulings.
At its meeting last week, the country’s five top judges were learnt to have decided to draft a point-by-point rejoinder to the centre that questioned their choice. But it also discussed names of judges from three other high courts in view of what the court called, was the “concept of fair representation”.
00:26 Voter ID case: FIR registered against Congress MLA: Two days after the discovery of a huge cache of Electors Photo Identity Cards (EPIC) at an apartment in Bengaluru, police on Thursday registered a first information report naming sitting Congress MLA Munirathna as one of the accused.
Briefing reporters, the chief electoral officer of Karnataka Sanjeev Kumar said all the reports on the case had been submitted to the Election Commission of India.
Similarly, the deputy commissioner had visited the spot, gathered information and sent a report to headquarters.
He said the commission would take a decision soon whether to countermand the election in Rajarajeshwari Nagar assembly constituency where the seizures were made.
Declining to divulge more information, Kumar said, “Every detail of the FIR cannot be shared but what you are saying (about the sitting MLA being an accused) is a fact..”
Asked about the recommendation he has made to the ECI, Kumar said it was not something to be discussed as sharing the details would vitiate the process of decision making.
The CEO said about 800 EPICs found in the apartment were verified and they were found to be 100 per cent genuine and original.
“Some of them are as old as 2012, which cannot be manufactured overnight.”
Kumar also clarified that the integrity of the electoral list was not compromised.
“That can becompletely ruled out because more than 800 have been thoroughly verified. There is no problem with the electoral roll,” he said.
The CEO said the FIR was registered under various Indian Penal Code sections and the Representation of People Act-1951.
Explaining the modus operandi, Kumar said a systematic survey was carried out in the RR Nagar constituency of each household with photographs of voters and their houses.
Details like their names, cases and even requirements like widow pension card, old age pension card and ration card was done, he said. — PTI