Pakistan Changes Tack

Posted By: Aditya Gogoi Posted On: Nov 09, 2023

In a major development, Pakistan has decided to pull back its diplomatic support, advocacy and special privileges to the Afghan Taliban regime after it failed to crack down on banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) terror group.

According to sources, Pakistan is likely to call back its remaining diplomatic staff from Afghanistan anytime amid the tension between the two countries.

The Express Tribune reported that Islamabad will no longer extend any “special privileges” to the interim Afghan Taliban government.

The TTP, which was set up in 2007, wants to impose strict band on Islam across Pakistan. It has ideological links with Afghan Taliban and is also known as Pakistan Taliban.

The Express Tribune newspaper reported that the immediate implication of Pakistan's apparent shift in its policy is that the chances of the Afghan Taliban government getting international recognition have become far slimmer than ever.

Official sources told the newspaper on Wednesday that Pakistan's goodwill gestures and assistance extended to the Afghan Taliban government after its return to power in August 2021 were taken for granted.

After the Taliban's return to power, Pakistan emerged as its main backer and advocate, urging the international community and stakeholders particularly the Western countries to stay engaged with the new rulers in Kabul.

Pakistan's policy of acting as the Afghan interim government's spokesperson often drew strong criticism both from within and outside the country. However, officials at that time defended the approach, insisting that the Afghan Taliban were a reality and had no other option but to work with them.

Islamabad made efforts with other regional players to ensure that sanctions against the Afghan Taliban government were lifted and Kabul should have access to the funds frozen by the US soon after the fall of Kabul in August 2021.

Also, Pakistan in order to facilitate the Afghan interim government, gave many incentives to Afghanistan in terms of trade and other facilities. But now, the sources said, Pakistan would no longer extend any special favours to the Afghan Taliban government as they were harbouring “our enemies”.

(with inputs from PTI)

Source: News18
Related Posts: AFGHAN TALIBAN,PAKISTAN GOVERNMENT,TEHREEK-E-TALIBAN PAKISTAN (TTP)

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Mahua Moitra's Political Odyssey

Posted By: Preeti Dabar Posted On: Dec 09, 2023

The 14-year political journey of Trinamool Congress leader Mahua Moitra has encountered both upheaval and elevation, as her expulsion from Parliament in a cash-for-query case marked the culmination of her tumultuous term in Lok Sabha.

Despite the abrupt brakes to her parliamentary career for the time being, the opposition's unwavering support painted a contrasting picture, underscoring Moitra's enduring impact in present-day Indian politics.

Moitra, a first-time MP representing Krishnanagar Lok Sabha seat, found herself expelled from the House on Friday. The Ethics Committee's report, holding her accountable for accepting gifts and illegal gratification, paved the way for her expulsion.

Following a contentious debate where Moitra was denied the opportunity to speak, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi proposed a motion to expel the TMC member for “unethical conduct,” a motion that was adopted through a voice vote.

In response to her expulsion, Moitra strongly criticised the decision, likening it to being sentenced by a “kangaroo court” and accusing the government of weaponising parliamentary panels to coerce the opposition into submission.

Born in Assam's Cachar district in 1974, Moitra's early education in Kolkata preceded her pursuit of higher studies in the United States.

Initially an investment banker with JP Morgan Chase in New York and London, Moitra's trajectory shifted dramatically after being inspired by Rahul Gandhi's “Aam Admi Ka Sipahi” initiative.

She relinquished her high-profile banking career in London to join the youth wing of the Congress in 2009. Assigned to the West Bengal unit, Moitra worked closely with Congress leader Subrata Mukherjee.

Amidst the winds of change in West Bengal against the Left Front regime, Moitra and Mukherjee switched allegiance to the TMC just days before the 2010 Kolkata Municipal Corporation elections, in which the Mamata Banerjee-led party triumphed.

Despite missing out on a party ticket for the 2011 assembly polls and 2014 Lok Sabha polls, Moitra waited patiently and made her electoral debut in the 2016 assembly polls, securing victory in Karimpur constituency.

Although not included in the state cabinet, her eloquent speeches and debating skills made her a prominent spokesperson for the party in the national media.

In 2019, she clinched the Lok Sabha ticket from Krishnanagar and won convincingly. Moitra's impassioned speeches in Parliament, despite her novice status, catapulted her into the national limelight, making her a sought-after TMC leader in television debates.

However, controversies and internal party debates occasionally clouded her rise. Known for speaking her mind, Moitra often found herself at odds with the party on organisational matters, with public rebukes from Mamata Banerjee.

Controversies became synonymous with Moitra over the last two years, including her remarks dubbing journalists as “two paisa journalists”, leading to a prolonged boycott by local Bengali media. Her statement at a conclave last year, asserting her right to imagine Goddess Kali as a meat-eating and alcohol-accepting deity, ignited a political storm nationwide.

A vocal opponent of the sedition law, Moitra has been actively involved in legal battles, serving as one of the writ petitioners in a Supreme Court case. Amid the cash-for-query controversy, Moitra has asserted she was being bullied for challenging the BJP government and pledged a triumphant return to Parliament with a bigger mandate.

While this controversy brought an abrupt end to her first term as a parliamentarian, it undeniably enhanced her stature within the party, with unwavering support from the top leadership.

The opposition also rallied behind Moitra, exemplified by Congress leader Sonia Gandhi standing with her as she launched salvos against the BJP, underscoring the enduring influence of Moitra in the complex realm of Indian politics.

Source: News18
Related Posts: MAHUA MOITRA,TMC

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Mahua Moitra a Symbol of Nari Shakti for TMC

Posted By: Ajay Rawat Posted On: Dec 09, 2023

Trinamool Congress leader Mahua Moitra's expulsion from Lok Sabha following an Ethics Committee report into the ‘cash for query' charges against her has given much-needed ammunition to her party to raise the issue in the run-up to the 2024 polls.

On Friday, as Moitra made her way out of Parliament, not just TMC MPs but INDIA leaders — including Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi — were seen with her, protesting against what they called an unfair move.

The fiery leader also received backing from her party chief and Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee who said the party supported Moitra and would always stand by her.

In a press conference, Banerjee drove home the point that Moitra was treated poorly as she was a woman from the opposition camp.

“I condemn the way democracy has been murdered by not giving her an opportunity. The party stands behind her with full support. We wanted justice but she wasn't given a chance. This shows BJP's vendetta politics. I congratulate INDIA for staying united and fighting back. The party supports Mahua's case, she is a woman and belongs to the young generation,” she said.

After the chief minister, several senior Bengal ministers spoke in Moitra's favour. Speaking to News18, Shashi Panja said, “See, they always behave badly with women. They speak about reservation but actually they are against women. The way Mahua Moitra was not allowed to speak and the way she was asked questions is unacceptable. Look at how Giriraj Singh commented on Didi. We will campaign on these issues in the Lok Sabha elections.”

Moitra, meanwhile, refused to cow down and said her expulsion was the “end of the BJP government”.

Bengal has a sizeable chunk of women voters and TMC sources said the party will use the Moitra incident and Giriraj Singh's comment on the chief minister to woo them.

The party launched an online campaign called #StandWithMahua to cash in on the TMC leader's popularity, hoping that it would yield good results. On Saturday, a protest will be held in Nadia, Moitra's home town, to show solidarity with her.

Banerjee also openly declared that Moitra will contest the 2024 polls, giving a clear signal that TMC will project her as the symbol of women power.

Experts said the party cashed in on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ‘Didi O Didi' comment in 2021 to galvanise voters by projecting the chief minister as a “victim of patriarchal sentiment”.

Taking a dig at TMC, BJP leader Dilip Ghosh said: “They don't have any other option but to make Moitra a candidate since half of their people are in jail. Why did they not stand with her from the very start? Congress seems to be more upset than TMC. All this will have no effect on people.”

Source: News18
Related Posts: 2024 LOK SABHA ELECTIONS,CASH-FOR-QUERY SCAM,LOK SABHA,MAHUA MOITRA,MAMATA BANERJEE,TRINAMOOL CONGRESS

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Congress review meeting

Posted By: Vanshika Pathak Posted On: Dec 09, 2023
Madhya Pradesh Congress President Kamal Nath during review meeting over defeat in Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh being chaired by party president Mallikarjun Kharge, in New Delhi on Friday. Former party chief Rahul Gandhi and KC Venugopal also in attendance. (Jitender Gupta)

The Indian National Congress (INC) party on Friday held separate election result review meetings to examine the shortcomings in Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh assembly polls that lead to its defeat at the hands of the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP). The party claimed that its defeat was unexpected, reported PTI. Another, Rajasthan assembly election results review meeting is scheduled to take place today.

Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge convened the review meeting at the All India Congress Committee headquarters in Delhi in the presence of former party president Rahul Gandhi and other senior leaders.

Also read: ?200 crore cash recovered in Odisha I-T raids, Congress MP under lens; PM Modi says ?every penny will be returned?

Congress in a statement said, "Today, a meeting to review the election results of Chhattisgarh was held at the Congress headquarters in Delhi. Senior Congress leaders including Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge and Rahul Gandhi were present in this meeting." The party further shared pictures of the review meeting on the election results.

Chhattisgarh review meeting

Congress General Secretary, K C Venugopal said the state Congress presidents were directed to submit a booth-wise report on the party's performance. He added, "We will strengthen our connect with the people and unitedly fight the upcoming Lok Sabha elections to unseat the BJP government." He said that though the results were disappointing, the morale of the party's rank and file was high.

AICC general secretary in-charge for Chhattisgarh, Kumari Selja claimed that they are not demoralised but dejected and said “We are disappointed, but not in despair. In the coming times, we will fight the Lok Sabha elections together."

Also read: Is non-attendance at INDIA bloc meeting a response to Congress' 'lone wolf' strategy?

She further said we would together contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections and emerge victorious. She stressed that the party has not lost its vote share and was same as it was in 2018. She said, "We have gained the trust of the public." She further mentioned that the party would carry out a detailed analysis on the poll results in Chhattisgarh.

Selja was confident that the party is set to perform better in the parliamentary (2024 Lok Sabha) elections as people continue to have faith and trust in the Congress party which was clearly evident from the voting pattern. She stressed that assembly election was not a one-sided affair as the party candidates lost by slim margins in several constituencies.

Also read: Mahua Moitra cash-for-query case highlights: ?Will fight you for the next 30 years,? says Moitra after her expulsion

Among other party leaders who attended the Chhattisgarh review meeting included Congress screening committee head and observer Ajay Maken, former chief minister Bhupesh Baghel, his former deputy CM T S Singh Deo and former ministers Tamradhwaj Sahu and PCC president Deepak Baij among other senior leaders.

Madhya Pradesh review meeting

AICC general secretary in-charge, Randeep Surjewala informed that the reasons for the party's defeat in Madhya Pradesh were also discussed. He said, "We openly discussed the reasons for the party's defeat and leaders analysed the shortcomings of the party within the forum."

Surjewala said that the Congress president held discussions and all the leaders authorised him to take a decision on how to strengthen the organisation. He added, "We urged him to hold a meeting of the Congress Legislature Party in Madhya Pradesh and appoint an observer for its next meeting to enable it to elect the new leader of opposition," Surjewala said. He further noted, "The results are disappointing and are not as per our expectations," reported PTI.

Among other party leaders who attended the Madhya Pradesh review meeting included PCC president Kamal Nath, former chief minister Digvijaya Singh and AICC screening committee head Jitendra Singh among other senior leaders.

Rajasthan review meeting

Congress leader Govind Singh Dotasra arrived in Delhi today to participate in Rajasthan review meeting. He said, "We will be deliberating on the reasons behind why we could return to power in the state. We will analyse our shortcomings and make corrections for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections," reported ANI.

Source: Live Mint
Related Posts: PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS,2024 LOK SABHA ELECTIONS,INDIAN NATIONAL CONGRESS,INC,ELECTION RESULT REVIEW,CHHATTISGARH,MADHYA PRADESH,DEFEAT,BHARATIYA JANATA PARTY,BJP

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Tata Planning Rs 40

Posted By: Aditya Gogoi Posted On: Dec 09, 2023

Tata Group is planning to set up a semiconductor processing plant in Assam at an investment of about Rs 40,000 crore, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said on Friday. Addressing a function here, he said it has approached the Centre for the final nod after discussions with the state government, and the go-ahead is expected soon.

“There is a very good news for us. Tata Electronics Ltd has submitted an application for setting up an electronic centre at Jagiroad,” Sarma said. “They have submitted a proposal to the Government of India with an outlay of about Rs 40,000 crore,” he added.

Jagiroad, in Morigaon district, is about 55 km from the state's largest city Guwahati. Sarma said the Tata Group held initial talks with the state government about the semiconductor assembly and packaging plant, and satisfied with the discussions here, they have approached the Centre.

“If all goes well, we will see a major investment in the state which will create a positive environment for industrialisation. We are in touch with the Centre and hope that the final approval will be given in a month or two,” he said. The chief minister said that the conglomerate has also approached the state government to train 1,000 people for employment in the unit.

“We used to always ask why electronics and IT industry did not come to our state. Now it is changing,” Sarma said. In a post on X, he thanked PM Narendra Modi “for his continuous guidance in transforming our State”.

The state cabinet had in August approved the Assam Semiconductor Manufacturing and Electronic Production Policy.

Source: News18
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Microsoft Says it Does Not Own Any Portion of OpenAI Published 52 minutes ago

Posted By: Aditya Gogoi Posted On: Dec 09, 2023

Microsoft said in a statement on Friday that it does not own any part of OpenAI, an artificial intelligence powerhouse.

”While details of our agreement remain confidential, it is important to note that Microsoft does not own any portion of OpenAI and is simply entitled to share of profit distributions,” said company spokesman Frank Shaw.

Source: News18
Related Posts: BUSSINESS

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Animal Box Office collection Day 8

Posted By: Tarun Kumar Posted On: Dec 09, 2023
Animal Box Office collection Day 8: Ranbir Kapoor delivers a Bollywood blockbuster (Screengrab from YouTube/T-Series)

Animal Box Office collection Day 8: Ranbir Kapoor’s Bollywood movie Animal, now a legitimate blockbuster has made a significant splash at the global Box Office. It has amassed an impressive worldwide gross of ₹563.3 crore after 8 days. This figure reflects the film's broad appeal and successful reception across various markets.

Breaking down the day-to-day performance, Animal had a robust opening week, collecting a total of ₹337.58 crore. This sum is further detailed by regional earnings, with Hindi language collections at ₹300.81 crore, followed by the Telugu version, which brought in ₹33.45 crore.

Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam language versions of the film contributed ₹2.73 crore, ₹52 lakh and ₹7 lakh respectively, showcasing the film's pan-Indian reach.

Also Read: Animal audience review: 'Ranbir's 3-hour long cigarette commercial' Sandeep Reddy Vanga's movie gets mixed reactions

On the eighth day, the second Friday following its release, Animal continued its successful run, with early estimates indicating an additional ₹23.50 crore in earnings. This brings the India net collection total to ₹361.08 crore. The Day 8 figures suggest that Animal is maintaining a strong momentum at the Box Office, likely buoyed by positive word-of-mouth and critical acclaim.

Extreme reactions to Ranbir Kapoor?s Animal

The movie is being hailed by several celebs and fans alike. On the contrary, there have been some highly-negative reactions about the extreme violence. Sandeep Reddy Vanga's directorial, just like his previous movie Kabir Singh, has been accused of “toxic masculinity" and “misogyny" in the movie.

Also Read: Animal and Sam Bahadur: Contrasting Films with Lessons for Savvy Investors

Actor Allu Arjun is one of the latest celebrities to praise the movie. “Blown away by the cinematic brilliance. Congratulations! #RanbirKapoor ji just took Indian cinema performances to a whole new level. Very Inspiring . I am truly in loss of words to explain the magic you've created," he wrote.

Source: Live Mint
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