Amarinder Singh, whose exit from the Congress was one of the biggest developments that Punjab saw last year ahead of the state elections, has congratulated the party leaders who joined the BJP yesterday.
Taking a swipe at his former party, Singh called the move a tip of the iceberg.
Five Congress leaders and former ministers Raj Kumar Verka, Balbir Singh Sidhu, Sunder Sham Arora, Gurpreet Singh Kangar and Kewal Dhillon joined the BJP on Saturday ahead Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s visit in Chandigarh.
Apart from these leaders, 2 former Shiromani Akali Dal MLAs Sarup Chand Singla and Mohinder Kaur Josh had also joined the BJP yesterday.
Taking to twitter, Amarinder Singh congratulated the Congress leaders Balbir S. Sidhu, Gurpreet S. Kangar, Dr Raj Kumar Verka, Sunder Sham Arora and Kewal Singh Dhillon for taking a step in the right direction and joining BJP today. This is just the tip of the iceberg, he tweeted.
Former Congress leader’s cryptic tweet is being seen as an indication to more likely exits from the grand old party.
Another exits from the Congress comes days after the former Punjab chief Sunil Jakhar joined the BJP in the presence of party national president JP Nadda on May 19. However, the BJP is gaining footprint in Punjab, where farmers’ movement over minimum support price had been in the discourse for quite some time.
In this year’s assembly elections in Punjab, Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party, which was the second largest party in the state, had received people’s mandate and win the election with a thumping majority in the state. The Congress was voted out of power in the Punjab assembly elections earlier this year.
Singh had left Congress last year after he stepped down as Chief Minister and formed his own party Punjab Lok Congress months before the Punjab assembly elections. He has been a critic of the Gandhis.
In his letter to Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Singh had raised many questions about the party leadership in Punjab. Apart from the part, he had also made allegations against the Congress’ individual leaders – including her son Rahul Gandhi and daughter Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
Ganesh Chaturthi: Home Minister Amit Shah offers prayers at Mumbai’s Lalbaugcha Raja | Watch here
Amit Shah visited Chief Minister Eknath Shinde’s official residence Varsha and offered prayers to the Ganapati idol installed there.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Saturday visited Mumbai’s famous Lalbaugcha Raja Ganesh Pandal. On the auspicious occasion, the Home Minister along with his family offered prayers to Lord Ganesha. Every year, Amit Shah visits Lalbaugcha Raja to offer prayers to Lord Ganesha.
Lalbaugcha Raja is one of the oldest and the most popular mandals in the metropolis attracting around one crore devotees including celebrities and politicians. Celebrities who visited Lalbaugcha Raja to offer prayers to Lord Ganesh this year includes Shah Rukh Khan, Kartik Aryan, Vicky Kaushal, Pulkit Sharma, Manjot Singh and Varun Sharma, Varun Dhawan, Esha Deol, Sunny Leone, Urfi Javed among others.
Following his visit to Lalbaugcha Raja, Amit Shah visited Chief Minister Eknath Shinde’s official residence Varsha and offered prayers to the Ganapati idol installed there. Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis was also seen along with the Home Minister seeking blessings from Lord Ganesha.
In the evening, Amit Shah is set to take part in the Laxmanrao Inamdar Memorial lecture, which will be organized at the Sir Cowasjee Jehangir Convocation Hall on the Fort campus of Mumbai University. He will depart for Delhi at 7 pm. According to an official statement from the Mumbai University, Governor Ramesh Bais, Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, Deputy CMs Devendra Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar will also attend the event.
The Memorial lecture is being conducted by the varsity in association with Sahakar Bharati, a pan-India organisation of Co-Operators and Co-Operatives, founded by Inamdar, popularly known as the ‘Vakil Saheb’ of RSS.
Earlier in the day, Union Home Minister Amit Shah was present at the first official meeting of the High-Level ‘One Nation, One Election’ Committee that took place under the chairmanship of former President Ram Nath Kovind. The first meeting was held at Jodhpur hostel.
One Nation, One Election: Former President Ram Nath Kovind chairs first official meeting in Jodhpur
During the meeting, the members decided to hold discussion and get suggestions from the stakeholders and the political parties on the idea of the ‘one nation, one election’.
The first official meeting of the High-Level ‘One Nation, One Election’ Committee was conducted on Saturday under the chairmanship of former President Ram Nath Kovind. The first meeting was held at Jodhpur hostel. The meeting witnessed the participation of the Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Union Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal and former Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad among others.
During the meeting, the members decided to hold discussion and get suggestions from the stakeholders and recognised national political parties on the idea of the ‘one nation, one election’, according to reports. In addition, the committee members also decided that if any of the political parties want to seek an appointment with the committee, it will be allowed to give their suggestions.
The committee members also deliberated to get the views of the stakeholders like the Election Commission of India, Law Commission Of India and other bodies. Reportedly, the members also primarily discussed how the committee will function and on which issues it needs to have deliberations with the concerned to build a consensus on the idea of the ‘one nation, one election’.
Furthermore, the panel also discussed how it needs to examine various scenarios for the simultaneous elections and make recommendations on how situations like a hung assembly or adoption of a no-confidence motion will be tackled.
Along with Kovind, Azad and Shah, Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, former chairman of the 15th Finance Commission N.K Singh, former Secretary General of Lok Sabha Subhash Kashyap, senior advocate Harish Salve and former Chief vigilance Commissioner Sanjay Kothari are the other names, who are the part of the eight-member panel.
However, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury declined an invitation to be part of the eight-member committee formed by the Union government to examine the ‘One nation, One election’ concept. The Congress leader also did not attend the first official meeting in Jodhpur. As per reports, the committee will look into the feasibility of holding not only Lok Sabha and assembly elections simultaneously, but also elections to municipalities and panchayats.
Supriya Sule to move privilege motion against BJP MP Ramesh Bidhuri
The NCP leader further mentioned that two days ago, Ramesh Bidhuri had heckled a senior member of the Parliament.
NCP MP Supriya Sule along with a TMC leader have written to Lok Sabha speaker Om Birla stating their intention to move a privilege motion against BJP MP Ramesh Bidhuri. Reportedly, during the discussion of Chandrayaan 3 success, Bidhuri’s remarks calling his parliament colleague a terrorist, militant etc triggered an uproar in the House with opposition leaders demanding strong action against him.
Notably, if the privilege motion is carried forward, it could potentially result in serious consequences to BJP MP Ramesh Bidhuri. Speaking on the matter, NCP leader Supriya Sule said that Ramesh Bidhuri is a frequent offender, adding that she along with a TMC leader wrote to Om Birla regarding moving a privilege motion against the BJP MP. The NCP leader further mentioned that two days ago, Ramesh Bidhuri had heckled a senior member of the Parliament. She expressed that she condemns such unruly behaviour.
Meanwhile, Clyde Crasto, the national spokesperson of NCP’s Sharad Pawar-led group, expressed his dismay at the behaviour of BJP MPs Harsh Vardhan and Ravi Shankar Prasad, who were observed laughing instead of intervening to correct Bidhuri’s remarks. The spokesperson noted that what is very disgusting is that BJP MPs Harsh Vardhan and Ravi Shankar Prasad were laughing instead of stopping or correcting Bidhuri from speaking in such a manner.
Crasto further urged immediate action against Bidhuri, enquiring why he has not yet faced suspension. The NCP spokesperson said that the Lok Sabha Speaker must take action immediately. Will the BJP suspend him from the party, or will they give him a promotion, he questioned.
Reacting to the developments, BJP MP Nishikant Dubey called for an investigation into the conduct and remarks of Danish Ali as well. Nishikant Dubey, while condemning Bidhuri’s comments, underlined that parliamentary decorum must be upheld. He highlighted that obstructing another MP and providing a running commentary during their allotted time are actions that warrant reprimand under Lok Sabha rules.