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Case against Shashi Tharoor in Kolkata court for saying BJP would make India Hindu Pakistan

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Case against Shashi Tharoor in Kolkata court for saying BJP would make India Hindu Pakistan

Congress leader Shashi Tharoor was issued summons by a Kolkata court on Saturday after a lawyer filed a case against him for claiming India would become a “Hindu Pakistan” if the BJP wins the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

Advocate Sumeet Chowdhury had filed the case alleging Tharoor’s comments had hurt religious sentiments and insulted the Constitution. The Congress leader has been asked to appear in the court on August 14.

During a talk on ‘Threats faced by Indian democracy and secularism’ in Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday, Tharoor was reported to have said, “If the BJP wins the 2019 Lok Sabha election, our democratic Constitution, as we understand it, will not survive as they will have all the elements they need to tear apart the Constitution of India and write a new one. That new one will be the one which will enshrine principles of Hindu Rashtra, that will remove equality for minorities, that will create a Hindu Pakistan…”

Several BJP leaders slammed Shashi Tharoor saying the MP had insulted India’s democracy and Hindus and demanded Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s apology in the matter.

Reacting to his remarks, BJP said it is an abuse and highly objectionable statement. “It is an abuse and highly objectionable statement to compare the world’s sixth largest economy with Pakistan. It is an insult to our democracy and Hindus,” said party spokesperson Sambit Patra. “From Hindu terrorists to Hindu Pakistan, the Pakistan-appeasing policies of Congress are unparalleled,” Patra added.

Calling Tharoor’s statement a “hallucination”, Union Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore said it was the Congress which had infringed upon the Constitution and freedom of the citizens.

While the Congress advised Tharoor to be restrained and exercise caution, Tharoor refused to apologise or back down, clarifying in a post on Facebook that the BJP and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s idea of a Hindu Rashtra is a “mirror image of Pakistan – a state with a dominant majority religion that seeks to put its minorities in a subordinate place”.

“Many proud Hindus like myself cherish the inclusive nature of our faith and have no desire to live, as our Pakistani neighbours are forced to, in an intolerant theocratic state,” Tharoor wrote. “We want to preserve India and not turn our beloved country into a Hindu version of Pakistan.”

“Pakistan was created as a state with a dominant religion that discriminates against its minorities and denies them equal rights. India never accepted the logic that had partitioned the country. But the BJP-RSS idea of a Hindu Rashtra is the mirror image of Pakistan — a state with a dominant majority religion that seeks to put its minorities in a subordinate place. That would be a Hindu Pakistan and it is not what our freedom movement fought for, nor the idea of India enshrined in our Constitution,” Tharoor wrote on Facebook.

Writing in news portal ThePrint, he said:

“I have said this before and I will say it again: our nationalist movement was divided between two sets of ideas, held by those who saw religious identity as the determinant of their nationhood and those who believed in an inclusive India for everyone, irrespective of faith. The former became the Idea of Pakistan, the latter the Idea of India…

“… the BJP/RSS idea of a Hindu Rashtra is the mirror image of Pakistan – a state with a dominant majority religion that seeks to put its minorities in a subordinate place. …it is not what our freedom movement fought for, nor is it the idea of India enshrined in our Constitution.

“…Hindutva is not Hinduism; it is a political doctrine, not a religious one. A “Hindu Pakistan” would not be Hindu at all, but a Sanghi Hindutva state. We want to preserve the India we love, and not turn our beloved country into a Hindutva version of Pakistan.

“What is bizarre about the media drama over my remarks is that no one giving air time to multiple BJP voices frothing at the mouth about my words actually asked them one simple question: “Is the BJP giving up its dream of a Hindu Rashtra?” Instead, pro-government voices have been allowed to get away with reaffirming the PM’s famous statement that the Constitution is his holy book, eliding the fact that many senior BJP leaders – from Governor Tathagata Roy to union minister of state Anantkumar Hegde – have openly affirmed that, in the latter’s words, “the BJP had come to power to change the Constitution” and that it would “do so in the near future”. RSS ideologue Govindacharya has declared that he is already at work on a new Hindutva Constitution for India.”

Meanwhile, the Kerala Congress Chief has backed Tharoor for his remark. State Congress chief MM Hassan said the party backed Tharoor’s statement. “What he has stated is the sentiments of secular Congress workers,” he said.

“What Tharoor has raised is a serious matter, which is very relevant. If Modi comes to power again, BJP would attempt to re-write the Constitution. Tharoor has cautioned about this threat and there is nothing wrong in his statement,” said Leader of Opposition in Kerala Assembly Ramesh Chennithala.

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Gorakhnath temple attack convict sentenced to death by NIA court

Gorakhnath temple attack convict Ahmad Murtaza Abbasi was sentenced to death, Monday, by a special anti-terror court.

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Gorakhnath temple attack

Gorakhnath temple attack convict Ahmad Murtaza Abbasi was sentenced to death, Monday, by a special anti-terror court.

A report quoting Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order), Prashan Kumar, said that Abbasi was awarded the death penalty under Section 121 of the Indian Penal Code by a special NIA court for attacking security personnel stationed at Gorakhnath temple in Uttar Pradesh’s Gorakhpur in April last year.

Abbasi, a chemical engineer, was arrested following an attack with a sharp-edged weapon on Uttar Pradesh Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC) personnel posted at the Gorakhnath temple.

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Police said that after interrogation, Abbasi revealed he was in cahoots with the Islamic State and had taken an oath to fight for the global terrorist group. They said that Abbasi was also providing financial aid to the terror group’s sympathizers and supporters.

Ahmad Murtaza Abbasi, a resident of Civil Lines area in UP’s Gorakhpur, is an IIT-ian with a degree in chemical engineering from IIT-Mumbai.

According to the police, Abbasi suffered from mental health issues for which he underwent treatment from several doctors and ultimately led to him separating from his wife in 2017.

On April 3 last year, Abbasi tried to force his way inside the Gorakhnath temple, when stopped, he proceeded to attack the security men deployed there with a sickle in which two constables were injured. However, he was overpowered and arrested.

The ATS investigation revealed that the Abbasi’s attack was part of a “deep conspiracy.” The UP Home Department had said the attack could be termed as a terror incident.

Mughal Garden: Opening date, timing, entry price and how to book Amrit Udyan tickets online

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Mughal Garden: Opening date, timing, entry price and how to book Amrit Udyan tickets online

Mughal Garden, now renamed Amrit Udyan, at Rashtrapati Bhavan is all set to open for the public from January 31. President Droupadi Murmu on Sunday graced the opening of the gardens of Rashtrapati Bhavan, Udyan Utsav 2023.

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Amrit Udyan

Mughal Garden, now renamed Amrit Udyan, at Rashtrapati Bhavan is all set to open for the public from January 31. President Droupadi Murmu on Sunday graced the opening of the gardens of Rashtrapati Bhavan, Udyan Utsav 2023.

Mughal Garden has been renamed to commemorate the 75 years of independence. In keeping with the Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav celebration’s theme, the garden has also been given a new name, Amrit Udyan.

Amrit Udyan’s opening and closing date

Amrit Udyan opens once a year to the public. This year, it will remain open for the general public from January 31 to March 26. However, it will be closed on all Mondays and on March 1 and 2 due to G20 meetings and March 8 on the occasion of Holi.

The garden will be accessible to special groups from March 28 to March 31. Amrit Udyan will open for farmers on March 28, people with disabilities on March 29, members of the armed forces, paramilitary groups, and police on March 30, and self-organized groups of tribal women on March 31.

Entry and exit for all visitors will be from gate number 35 of the President’s Estate, close to where North Avenue meets Rashtrapati Bhavan.

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Amrit Udyan timings

People can visit Amrit Udyan during the time period between 10 am and 4 pm.

How to book Amrit Udyan tickets online?

  • Go to the official website of Rashtrapati Bhavan at https://rashtrapatisachivalaya.gov.in or https://rb.nic.in/rbvisit/visit_plan.aspx.
  • On the homepage, select the option that reads Mughal Garden Visit.
  • Enter the required details such as name, date of visit, etc.
  • After that, you are required to submit your photo ID.
  • Click on the register button.

People can also buy Amrit Udyan tickets offline. Walk-in visitors have to register themselves at the facilitation counters as well as at the self-service kiosk near Gate 12 of Rashtrapati Bhavan. The visitors will have 6 slots to choose from, so it is advised to make prior bookings to avoid rushing at the gate.

The number of guests that can be reserved at once is 30. However, schools and colleges reserve a maximum of 50 at a time.

Amrit Udyan entry/ticket price

There is no fee for the booking of slots or entry to the Gardens of Rashtrapati Bhavan during Udyan Utsav. Visitors must, however, pay Rs 50 to enter Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Rashtrapati Bhavan will be open five days a week from Wednesday to Sunday and the Rashtrapati Bhavan Museum six days a week from Tuesday to Sunday. People can also witness the change of guard ceremony every Saturday, except on gazetted holidays.

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Bank holidays February 2023: Banks to remain shut for 10 days, check dates here

Apart from festivals, banks will also remain shut on the second and fourth Saturdays.

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Bank holidays February 2023

Every month banks across the country remain shut due to festivals and other public and private holidays. In February 2023, both private and public banks will not function for 10 days. However, the holidays differ from state to state.

Festivals like Guru Ravidas Jayanti, Hazrat Ali Jayanti, Maha Shivaratri, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, and others will be celebrated in February which might affect the functioning of banks in several states.

Full list of bank holidays in February 2023

DATEDAYHOLIDAYSTATES 
5 February 2023 Sunday Hazrat Ali Jayanti Uttar Pradesh 
5 February 2023 Sunday Guru Ravidas Jayanti Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana & Punjab 
15 February 2023 Wednesday Lui-Ngai-Ni Manipur 
18 February 2023 Saturday Maha Shivaratri Several states of India 
19 February 2023 Sunday Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Jayanti Maharashtra 
20 February 2023 Monday State Day  Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram 
21 February 2023 Tuesday Losar Sikkim 

Apart from this, banks will also remain shut on the second and fourth Saturdays.

DATEDAYHOLIDAYSTATES 
12 February 2023 Saturday Second Saturday All States 
15 February 2023 Tuesday Lui-Ngai-Ni  Manipur 
19 February 2023 Sunday Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Jayanti Maharashtra 
25 February 2023 Saturday Fourth Saturday All States 

For those unversed, the Reserve Bank of India categorises holidays into three categories-Holiday under the Negotiable Instruments Act and Real-Time Gross Settlement Holidays, Holidays under the Negotiable Instruments Act, and Banks’ Closing of Accounts.

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In January 2023, banks across the country will remain shut for 14 days.

Date  Day    Holiday    State  
January 1, 2023SundayNew Year Bank Holiday & Weekend Bank HolidayAll over India
January 2, 2023MondayNew Year Bank CelebrationMizoram
January 5, 2023ThursdayGuru Gobind Singh JayantiHaryana and Rajasthan
January 8, 2023SundayWeekend Bank HolidayAll over India
January 11, 2023WednesdayMissionary DayMizoram
January 14, 2023SaturdaySecond Saturday Bank HolidayAll over India
January 15, 2023SundayWeekend Bank HolidayAll over India
January 22, 2023SundayWeekend Bank HolidayAll over India
January 23, 2023MondayNetaji Subash Chandra Bose JayantiTripura and West Bangal
January 25, 2023WednesdayState DayHimachal Pradesh
January 26, 2023ThursdayRepublic DayAll over India
January 28, 2023SundayFourth Saturday Bank HolidayAll over India
January 29, 2023SundayWeekend Bank HolidayAll over India
January 31, 2023MondayMe-Dam-Me-PhiAssam

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