WEDNESDAY ASSAM FLOOD SITUATION GRIM, NEARLY 50 LAKH PEOPLE HIT 22 Incessant rains since last week have inundated 32 out of 36 districts in the north-eastern state, throwing lives in disarray JUNE, 2022 NDRF rushed to worst-affected areas epaper.morningstandard.in facebook.com/TheMorningStandard Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said on Tuesday that four units of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) were rushed from Bhubaneswar to Silchar to carry out rescue operations as the flood situation in Karimganj and Cachar districts worsened due to the rising waters of Barak and Kushiyara rivers following heavy rains twitter.com/TheMornStandard AIIMS CHIEF PANEL OF NAMES EXPANDED Union health ministry holds meeting to discuss possible candidates A CAPITAL VIEW OF NEWS PAGE 4 NEW DELHI J8.00 PAGES 12 Over 2 lakh people in relief camps The calamity, which has become an annual feature in Assam, has hit 5,424 villages forcing 2,31,819 to take shelter in 810 camps. According to the Assam State Disaster Management Authority, a total crop area of 1,13,485 hectares and 33,84,326 animals have been affected while 5,232 animals have been swept away CBI may look into Delhi government’s new liquor policy S H A H I D F A R I D I @ New Delhi FORMER President of Delhi Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee and BJP leader Manjinder Singh Sirsa has filed a complaint with the CBI on June 7, 2022 accusing the Delhi state government of implementing an excise policy in the state that “extended wrongful gains and favour to liquor wholesalers in Delhi… at the cost of state’s revenue”. Sirsa has sought a probe against Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister, Manish Sisodia, who was the head of the Group of Ministers that drafted the new excise policy and some govern, ment officials “who have customized and enacted the policy to reap wrongful gains”. He said “the policy has been drafted and implemented with the following persons acting as aides: Manoj Rai, Manish Sisodia, K Gehlot, Satyendra Jain, Arava Gopi Krishna and several other unknown ministers in connivance with one Dinesh Arora and Vijay Nair, who have been actively involved in layering…” the deal. In his complaint, Sirsa has also accused Sisodia of holding a meeting at his Delhi residence on May 30, 2022 with Punjab excise and taxation officials to draft a similar policy for Punjab. Sirsa said the meeting at Sisodia’s residence was attended by Varun Runjan, excise and taxation commissioner, Punjab, Kap Sinha, financial commissioner, taxation, Punjab, Naresh Dubey Vijay Nair, AAP , Member of Parliament Raghav Chadha and Punjab excise minister Harpal Cheema. Sisodia did not respond to a detailed questionnaire sent to him by this newspaper on June 14. On June 20, however, a response, purportedly to the questionnaire, was received on Whatsapp by this correspondent from Pritam Pal Singh, Media Communication Advisor to Chief Minister of the Government of the National Capital Territory Delhi. , The response read as follows: “Aam Aadmi Party’s response – All the allegations leveled herein are completely baseless and politically motivated. Delhi government’s new excise policy increased tax revenue by over `3,000 crore in just one year. This money was earlier going into the pocket of BJP leaders who were controlling the liquor mafia across Delhi. Seeing their illicit income be (sic) stopped, the BJP is making huge hue and cry .” SEE ALSO: P7 Uddhav faces rebellion from within, MVA on edge Minister Eknath Shinde wants party to go back as junior ally of BJP PARTY POSITIONS 145 53 5 55 44 288 31 MAHARASHTRA Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray’s government faced it biggest existential crisis on Tuesday with Shiv Sena minister Eknath Shinde revolting along with 3035 party MLAs and Independents and asking the former to form an new government with BJP in the state. To escape disqualification under the antidefection law, Shinde needs the support of 37 party MLAs. Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress are part of the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi. Shinde wants the Sena to go back to its former ally and be part of a new government led by former chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. The erosion in the party’s ranks put a question mark over Uddhav’s leadership, more so because Shinde was known to be close to him. As things stand, Uddhav loyalists have been reduced to a minority within his party For, . at a meeting he called in Mumbai, only 18 are learnt to have turned up, though Sena’s Sanjay Raut put the figure at 30. Earlier in the day Shinde and , his supporters checked into the Le Meridian hotel in Surat. BJP is the single largest party with 105 MLAs and support of six Independents. It needs 40 more 10 S U D H I R S U R YA W A N S H I @ Mumbai Total seats BJP Shiv Sena NCP Cong Others + Independents Uddhav Thackeray Eknath Shinde Simple majority BJP has support of SIX Ind Eknath Shinde claims the support of 30-35 MLAs. Needs 37 to escape anti-defection law to reach the half-way mark to return to power (see box). In the Rajya Sabha elections, the BJP got support from 123 and in the subsequent MLC polls, its votes ballooned to 134, apparently through cross-voting. Sources said after Sena’s poor performance in the MLC polls, Uddhav called a meeting of his party’s top leaders, including Shinde. He was said to be upset with Shinde for not managing the show despite being giving weighty portfolios of urban development and PWD, and a free hand in the government and the party Shinde has . since been stripped of his position as the Sena’s group leader in the Assembly . BJP sources said Shinde was in touch with its leadership since the last six months. “He supported us in the Rajya Sab- ha elections and the legislative council polls...We provided logistical support to Shinde upon his revolt. The rooms at Le Meridian were booked by us,” the leader said seeking anonymity . Uddhav tried to reach out to Shinde by sending sent his personal assistant Milind Narvekar to Surat. During the 30-minute meeting Narvekar had with Shinde, the latter spoke to Uddhav and his spouse Rashmi Thackeray over the phone but he did not promise to return back to Sena. Most of the MLAs with Shinde are from rural areas. “They were never entertained by Uddhav and his coterie. Shinde tapped this space to his advantage. He was also apprehensive about the rise of Aditya Thackeray in the party,” said a person close to SEE ALSO: P8 Shinde. SIGNS OF TROUBLE In June 10 Rajya Sabha polls, Shiv Sena’s second candidate Sanjay Pawar lost to BJP’s Dhananjay Mahadik, with smaller parties and Independent MLAs going with BJP In state Legislative Council elections on June 20, Sena’s both candidates, Sachin Ahir and Anesha Padvi, won, but they got 26 votes each rather than the quota of 32 votes as 12 MLAs of Sena and Independent who supported it cross-voted for BJP Police outside a hotel in Surat where disgruntled Shiv Sena legislators from neighbouring Maharashtra are camping | PTI After the MLC elections, Uddhav Thackeray called a meeting of his party top leaders on Monday over ‘mismanagement in elections’. He was upset with Eknath Shinde for failing to ensure enough votes for party candidates. Shinde left the meeting EXPRESS READ Service chiefs brief PM on Agnipath New Delhi: Army chief General Manoj Pande, Air Chief Marshal V R Chaudhari and Navy chief Admiral R Hari Kumar separately met Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday and briefed him about the progress on Agnipath. It is learnt that the three service chiefs apprised Modi of the overall induction process and the steps being taken for the successful rollout of the scheme. P7 Bail to 3 accused in ‘Bulli Bai’ case Mumbai: A sessions court on Tuesday granted bail to three students arrested in the ‘Bulli Bai’ app case — Niraj Bishnoi, Aumkareshwar Thakur and Neeraj Singh. The app had made the details of several Muslim women public to allow people to participate in their “auction”. Earlier in April, a magistrate court had granted bail to Vishal Kumar Jha, Shweta Singh and Mayank Agarwal. Nobel sold for Ukrainian kids New York: The Nobel Peace Prize auctioned off by Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov to raise money for Ukrainian child refugees sold for $103.5 million, shattering the old record for a Nobel. A spokesperson for Heritage Auctions, which handled the sale, said the winning bid was made by proxy. The $103.5 million sale translates to $100 million Swiss francs, hinting that the buyer is from overseas. STAND AT EASE PM Narendra Modi at a mass yoga session to celebrate the 8th International Day of Yoga at Mysore Palace | UDAYASHANKAR S POINTING out that about 18,000 children under the EWS category had not been provided admission to private schools in the national capital, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has directed the Delhi government to take immediate legal action to ensure uninterrupted education of such children. In a letter to Delhi Chief Secretary Naresh Kumar, the commission said it had received multiple complaints regarding denial of admission to children belonging to the Economically Weaker Sections by private schools despite the children being selected under the lottery system. The Right to Education Row in MP over civil service exam question on Kashmir E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E @ Bhopal YOUNGSTERS aspiring to join the State Civil Services in the BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh were asked on Sunday “Should , India hand over Kashmir to Pakistan?” The question was a part of the General Aptitude Test question paper of the State Civil Services preliminary exam 2021. It had two explaineroptions: “Yes, it will help India save money”; and “No, it will lead to similar demands”. As a row erupted, the MP Public Service Commission on Tuesday responded by “neutralising” the objectionable question and decided to debar the paper setter and moderator from future assignment. Home Minister Narottam Mishra confirmed the punitive action. The opposition, however, demanded the “wrong doers” be booked for sedition.Congress state head (media) KK Mishra hit out at CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan. “He needs to tell the people how such an anti-national thought even crossed the MPPSC mind. If the government has nothing to do with the setting of the paper, then it needs to immediately book the wrongdoers for sedition.” PRESIDENTIAL POLL TENNIS LOSSES ARE THE NORM FOR INDIA Yuki and Ramkumar’s early exit from Wimbledon qualifiers is latest in a disappointing year for singles players from the country | P11 JAB-O-METER TAKE YOUR SHOT June 20 11,31,327 doses June 21 10,50,571 doses TOTAL DOSES: 1,96,44,19,344 NATIONWIDE JUNE 20 JUNE 21 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths DELHI Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 12,781 8,537 18 9,923 7,293 17 JUNE 20 JUNE 21 1,060 1,221 06 1,383 1,162 01 18K EWS kids denied school admission; panel seeks action E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E @ New Delhi PAK REFERENCE Act, 2009, makes it mandatory for all private schools in Delhi to reserve 25 per cent seats for EWS category . Taking cognisance of the complaints, the commission summoned the dealing officer from the Directorate of Education virtually During the sum. mon hearing, it came to light that in the academic year 20212022, against the approximate 40,000 seats allotted for admission of EWS category children in Delhi private schools, only 28,000 children were enrolled. Again, in the academic year 2022-2023, approximately 33,000 seats were allotted for admission under EWS quota but only 27,000 children were taken, NCPCR chairperson Priyank Kanoongo said in his letter. MURMU IS NDA PICK R A J E S H K U M A R T H A K U R @ New Delhi FORMER Jharkhand governor Droupadi Murmu is all set to become the first tribal woman to hold the highest office of the Republic, as the 64-year-old emerged the consensus Presidential candidate of the BJP-led NDA late on Tuesday evening. This newspaper was the first to report on June 10 that she was leading the Presidential race in the NDA. Sharing the news after deliberations at the BJP parliamentary board, attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Union minister Nitin Gadkari and other senior leaders, BJP national president J P Nadda said, “We wanted to take a woman candidate from east India, especially from the tribal community After consultation with allies and . others, we have decided to field Murmu.” Nadda said Murmu’s life has been dedicated to the service of the nation and upliftment of the downtrodden, adding that preference has been given to a woman tribal candidate for the first time. “She has rich administrative experience and had an outstanding gubernatorial tenure. I am confident she will be a great President of our nation,” he added. Soon after being named as the BJP-led NDA’s presidential candidate, Murmu said she was both surWho is prised and delighted on Draupadi learning that she had been Murmu? nominated for the top job. An arts graduate She said she was optimisfrom Ramadevi tic of support from all Women’s College members of the Odisha Asin Bhubaneswar, sembly and state MPs. she worked as an Born in 1958 in a poor asst professor in tribal family in Odisha’s Sri Aurobindo Myurbhanja district, MurIntegral mu rose to her present statEducation and ure after struggling Research Centre, through ups and down Rairangpur. She throughout her life. She joined BJP in 1997 was the first governor to complete a five-year term in tribal-dominated Jharkhand (2015-2021). She also served as minister for commerce and transports in the BJP-Biju Janata Dal coalition government in Odisha from 2000 to 2002. Congratulating Murmu, PM Narendra Modi tweeted: “Her understanding of policy matters and compassionate nature will greatly benefit our country ...She has rich administrative experience and had an outstanding gubernatorial tenure. I am confident she will be a great President of our nation.” Expressing happiness over Murmu’s nomination, BJD supremo and Odisha CM ister Naveen Patnaik said it was a proud moment for the people of his state. Yashwant Sinha is Oppn nominee for Raisina palace race E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E @ New Delhi OPPOSITION leaders on Tuesday decided to field former Union minister Yashwant Sinha as their joint candidate for Presidential polls. Sinha’s name came up after NCP supremo Sharad Pawar, former Jammu & Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah and eformer West Bengal governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi declined the Opposition’s invite to run for President. “We are happy to announce that we have unanimously chosen Yashwant Sinha as the common candidate of the opposition parties for the presidential election, which will take place on July 18, 2022,” Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said while reading out a joint statement after the meeting. “We regret Modi government made no serious effort to have consensus on a presidential candidate,” said Ramesh. Indicating that his name Five regional was finalised with his conparties skip sent, Sinha tweeted, “Now meeting time has come when for a Congress, NCP, larger national cause I TMC, CPI, CPI-M, must step aside from the SP, NC, AIMIM, party to work for greater RJD and AIUDF opposition unity .” attended the Soon after that tweet, meet on Tuesday. Sinha technically quit the Five regional Trinamool Congress as parties — TRS, vice-president expressing BJD. AAP, SAD gratefulness to TMC chief and YSRCP — Mamata Banerjee. stayed away from Sinha, who switched the meeting over to the TMC from the BJP, was Union finance minister from 1990-1991 under then prime minister Chandra Shekhar. He also served as the external affairs minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government from 2002 to 2004. He quite the BJP in 2018 and joined the TMC after a short gap. This is the first time that a TMC member has been nominated for the presidential poll. Party supremo Mamata Banerjee tweeted: “I would like to congratulate YashwantSinha on becoming the consensus candidate, supported by all progressive opposition parties. A man of great honour and acumen, who would surely uphold the values that represent our great nation!”
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