Hindustan Times – Former Tripura Congress chief led alliance wins territorial council polls

Priyanka Deb Barman

11 April 2021. Tipraha Indigenous Progressive Regional Alliance (TIPRA) Motha, led by former Tripura Congress president Pradyot Kishore Debbarma has swept the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) polls by winning 18 of the 28 seats that went to polls to elect representatives for the 30-member council on 06 April.

The BJP finished second, winning nine seats and one seat was won by an independent candidate.

The results assume significance since 70% percent of Tripura’s geographical area and close to one-third of its population is covered by the autonomous council.

BJP’s alliance partner the Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT), the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and the Congress failed to win even a single seat.

The result of the polls declared on Saturday marks the emergence of Pradyot’s party as a new regional force, less than two years ahead of the 2023 state assembly elections.

Out of the TTAADC 30 seats, 28 are elected and two are nominated. The results assume significance since 70% percent of Tripura’s geographical area and close to one-third of its population is covered by the autonomous council.

The BJP had won 36 seats in the 60-seat assembly in 2018 polls to form its first government in the state defeating the Left Front alliance, which could only win 16 seats.

Debbarma won from Takarjala-Jampuijala constituency. Ananta Debbarma, Animesh Debbarma and Jagadish Debbarma were among the prominent winning candidates from the winning party. TIPRA Motha was a front including the TIPRA ( The Indigenous Progressive Regional Alliance), Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT-Tipraha) and Tipraland State Party (TSP) and was in alliance with the Indigenous Nationalist Party of Twipra (INPT).

Pradyot resigned from the Congress in 2019 and floated TIPRA Motha this year. In its campaign, the front promised to form a Greater Tipuraland by including indigenous population living outside TTAADC region in Tripura and also other states such as Assam, Mizoram and even some parts of Bangladesh.

I want to appeal to all through the media to maintain peace. There should be no violence against those who have lost the polls. We are Tiprasa and they are Tiprasa as well. After the poll, we will bring them with us to make our unity bigger,” Pradyot Kishore told the media after the front’s victory on Saturday.

BJP spokesperson Nabendu Bhattacharjee said, “We didn’t field candidates in most of the seats. We are not unhappy with the poll results. Our alliance partner IPFT will discuss their performance.” No reaction from IPFT could be obtained.

The CPM, which ruled the TTAADC for the last three consecutive terms, said it will analyse the results. “We lost the poll. However, we will analyse what led to our poor performance in the election,” said veteran party leader Radhacharan Debbarma.

85.14% voter turnout was recorded during the 06 April polls. The council polls were postponed by almost a year due to the Covid-19 pandemic and Governor RK Bais ran the council in the interim. The TTAADC was formed in 1982.

https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/former-tripura-congress-chief-led-alliance-wins-territorial-council-polls-101618136671596.html

Sikh24.com – Op/Ed: BJP-RSS Government may saffronize celebrations of 400th Parkash Gurpurb of Guru Tegh Bahadur

Sikh24 Editors

Op/Ed:10 April 2021. BJP-RSS led Union Government of India may saffronize celebrations of 400th Parkash Gurpurb (birth anniversary) of ninth Guru Sri Guru Tegh Bahadar Jee this year.

It would be against the aspirations of the Sikhs as the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has already said that it would not invite Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the main event being organized by it at Amritsar Sahib to mark the historic occasion.

Modi chaired a meeting of the High Level Committee to commemorate 400th Birth Anniversary through video conferencing.

The meeting was attended by former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh; Union Home Minister Amit Shah; Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla; Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Harivansh; Leader of Opposition, Rajya Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge; Haryana CM Manohar Lal; Punjab CM Capt. Amarinder Singh; Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot; President, Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee, Amritsar, Bibi Jagir Kaur; MPs Sukhbir Badal and Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa; Former MP Tarlochan Singh; MD Amul RS Sodhi; Eminent Scholar Amarjit Singh Grewal, among others.

Elaborating on the discussions in the meeting in a press release issued by the Press Information Bureau (PIB), the Prime Minister said that to connect more and more people to commemorate the 400th Parkash Purab, various activities will be organized throughout the year.

He said that the organisation of activities should be such that not only the life and teachings of Guru Tegh Bahadur Jee, but of the entire Guru tradition is propagated world-over.

He also said that proper research and documentation on this aspect of the Sikh tradition should be done.

As the RSS has a history of distorting Sikh history and Hinduising Sikh principles, the Sikhs need to be conscious of these activities. The apprehensions cannot be ruled out that it may saffronize these activities.

We have so many examples of the attempts made by it and its so-called Sikh wing ‘Rashtriya Sikh Sangat’ to saffronize the Sikh faith which has its own distinct identity and socio-religious order.

Bhai Mati Das jee is a famous Shahid of the Sikhs who happily faced death by being sawn alive but did not forsake his faith.

Bhatt Vehis record the history of this Shahid and it is known that Bhai Mati Das’s grandfather, Bhai Paraga jee was a Sikh of Guru Hargobind and also became a Shaheed in the battle of Ruhila.

Bhai Mati Das jee was of course then born into a Sikh family. The family had been Sikh since the time of Guru Ram Das. Bhai Sati Das was Bhai Sahib’s brother.

Bhai Mati Das accompanied Guru Tegh Bahadur in his travels to Assam, Bengal and Bihar.

When Guru Sahib was arrested and brought to Delhi, Bhai Mati Das was also brought with him. When offered the choice to forsake the Sikh faith and become a Muslim or to face death, Bhai Mati Das happily accepted the latter and only asked that he die while facing the Guru.

Even when Bhai Sahib’s body had been cut in two, Japji Sahib could be heard from both halves.

Bhai Sati Das was also offered the choice to forsake Sikhi or death, and he accepted death. He was wrapped in cotton and burnt alive. (Source: Sikhiwiki.org)

The Hindu fundamentalist organization, in an effort to demean Guru Tegh Bahadar’s Shaheedee, have appropriated Bhai Mati Das and Bhai Sati Das as Hindu heros.

Yearly events are held by its various wings to commemorate their martyrdoms but they are presented as Hindus who died for their faith. Many years ago, a Hindu organization published an advertisement terming Bhai Mati Das as “Mati Das Sharma”.

It also presents the martyrdom of ninth Guru Sahib in the wrong perspective and links it to the “national integration” of India.

Similarly, the organization which controlled the Union Government, had attempted to present Baba Banda Singh Bahadur as “Banda Bairagi” (i.e. a Hindu warrior). Their sole aim is to present Sikhs as part of Hindus.

Recently, the RSS-BJP government stopped the Sikhs from going to Nankana Sahib in Pakistan to observe centenary of Saka Nankana Sahib.

So, the Sikh organizations and scholars must closely watch what is being done by the government to celebrate 400th Parkash Gurpurb.

Hindustan Times – Sleazy video: Victim appeals to Akal Takht to review lifting of ban on ex-CKD chief

Under the ban, imposed on 23 January 2018, the highest Sikh temporal seat had barred Chadha from addressing religious, social, political and educational functions.

During a meeting held on 31 March, the Sikh clergy headed by Akal Takht acting jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh lifted the ban.

Amritsar – Panjab – India, 11 April 2021. The woman principal seen in a sleazy video with former Chief Khalsa Diwan (CKD) president Charanjit Singh Chadha over three years ago has written to the Akal Takht to review its decision of lifting the ban on him.

She had levelled sexual harassment charges against Chadha, leading to the original ban.

Hours after the Takht’s letter lifting the ban surfaced, the woman wrote a two-page letter to the jathedar of the Akal Takht to lodge her protest against the move.

“I am a follower of the Sikh faith and the lifting of ban on Chadha by Akal Takht Sahib has saddened me.

I requested you to give me a chance to present my side in this case but my pleas were not entertained,” she says in the letter.

Under the ban, imposed on January 23, 2018, the highest Sikh temporal seat barred Chadha from addressing religious, social, political and educational functions. During a meeting held on 31 March this year, the Sikh clergy headed by Akal Takht jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh lifted the ban.

“Chadha is misleading the Akal Takht Sahib as a case filed by me in the session court is still pending, with next hearing is scheduled on 13 May. In such a situation, he should not have been given a clean chit.

Secondly, I have been facing social and mental problems for the last three years and fighting a legal battle to regain my dignity. Your move may leave a negative impact on the case pending against him,” she adds in the letter.

Chadha, however, has ruled out pendency of any such case. “There is no case pending against me. The case is against the state. The FIR lodged against me was quashed in 2018 on the recommendation of the police investigation team, which did not find me guilty of anything,” said Chadha.

On the woman’s plea for review, he said, “I will like to clarify that the Akal Takht Sahib imposed the ban on me for only two years. It has been lifted after more than three years. I have already faced the ban for an additional year.”

https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/others/sleazy-video-victim-appeals-to-akal-takht-to-review-lifting-of-ban-on-exckdchief-101618085187355.html

The Hindu – Lockdown in Delhi only if health infrastructure collapses, says CM Kejriwal

The Chief Minister urges people to leave house only if absolutely necessary.

Special Correspondent

New Delhi – India, 11 April 2021. Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said that the government was against imposing a coronavirus-related lockdown in the Capital but urged people to leave their house only if absolutely necessary.

He said that the fourth and current wave in Delhi was worse than the one in November and that various curbs had been put in place to control the surge of the virus.

A lockdown would only be imposed it the health infrastructure collapsed and as of now, there were enough beds, ventilators and oxygen available to deal with the rising cases.

“Only those patients who have a serious case of COVID-19 should visit hospitals. The rest should be under home isolation.

We have enough hospital beds as of now but if the beds are occupied by patients with mild symptoms, then people who need a bed more desperately will not get one and it may even lead to death,” Mr. Kejriwal said.

He added that he had been getting reports that people were moving from one hospital to the other trying to find beds. “Please download the Delhi Corona app to check availability of beds in advance so that you don’t need to go from one hospital to another.

People are also rushing to private hospitals where there is a shortage of beds. Over the past five years, Delhi government hospitals have improved. I urge people to visit government hospitals as well.”

He called for the need to speed up the vaccination drive. “I have spoken to experts who say that getting the vaccine does not mean that you will not get COVID-19. What it protects you from is a severe illness.

People still need to wear masks and practise hand washing and social distancing even after getting vaccinated.

Figures in Delhi show that this wave is more prevalent among the younger population. I urge the Central government to allow us to get those below 45 vaccinated at the earliest,” he said.

The Delhi government on Saturday banned all gatherings except for marriage and funerals till April 30.

The government also made it mandatory for people travelling from Maharashtra to Delhi by flight to have a negative RT-PCR test report, as per an official order.

“All social, political, sports, entertainment, academic, cultural, religious, festival related and other gatherings and congregations,” reads the list of prohibited activities as per the order.

The number of people who can attend weddings have been reduced to 50 and funerals to 20.
Restaurants, bars, theatres, multiplexes are allowed with a maximum occupancy of 50% of the total seating capacity, as per the order. The occupancy in buses and metro trains were also capped at 50%.

The Capital reported 7,897 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday with a positivity rate of 10.21%. The number of deaths during the same period was 39.

https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/lockdown-in-delhi-only-if-health-infrastructure-collapses-says-cm-kejriwal/article34294557.ece

BBC News – Myanmar: Indonesia steps up

The way the coup has poisoned the ground for any compromise was illustrated by the fate of Indonesia’s efforts this week to start an Asean initiative on Myanmar.

With Myanmar as a member, and bound by its customary consensus-based decision making and non-interference in each other’s domestic affairs, Asean has particular challenges in addressing this crisis.

But it must, as further confrontation and bloodshed in Myanmar would have serious repercussions for the stability and reputation of the association, and in particular for countries like Thailand which share long borders.

Thai authorities are already making preparations for the possibility of large numbers of people fleeing across the border.

Asean is not speaking with one voice on Myanmar.

Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, and initially even the Philippines, once the most liberal member state on human rights and democracy, have all refused to criticise the coup, describing it as an internal matter.

Singapore, the biggest foreign investor in Myanmar, has been stronger in its statements, expressing “grave concern” and describing the use of lethal force against protesters as “inexcusable”.

It is Indonesia, Asean’s largest country with a past history of taking the leading role in resolving issues like the Cambodian conflict in the 1980s, which has stepped up to try to find a path out of the crisis in Myanmar.

Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, more than six years in the job, is among the most experienced in the region, and was active in seeking solutions to the Rohingya crisis four years ago.

Indonesia is distant from Myanmar, sharing no borders nor holding any great economic or strategic stakes in what happens there.

And as another large, multi-ethnic, post-colonial state in which the armed forces played a central role in nation-building, Indonesia has sometimes been viewed by the generals in Myanmar as something of a model.

However, when Ms Marsudi began exploring the possibility of holding a special Asean meeting on Myanmar, details of the proposals being discussed with other member states were leaked – in particular the idea of holding the junta to its promise of a new election within a year, and insisting that Aung San Suu Kyi and other NLD politicians be released and allowed to contest.

As a compromise – that idea makes some sense.

But it enraged anti-military protesters in Myanmar, who argue that last November’s election overwhelmingly won by the NLD must be honoured, and that backing a new election rewards the military for overturning the results of the last one and will only encourage them to mount further coups.

Fiendishly complex diplomatic game

For all of its weaknesses, Asean remains the one forum where senior Burmese officials will be welcomed, and where channels of communication remain open.

It may be best placed to facilitate passing messages to the generals from the rest of the world, and hearing back from them their thoughts on how to resolve the crisis.

The sanctions applied by western countries will not move the generals much at this stage, but their removal could be used as the carrot to induce the Tatmadaw into moving away from confrontation and repression.

Engagement by Myanmar’s Asian neighbours will not move the notoriously xenophobic generals much either, but if well-coordinated with the pressure applied by the West, it might produce positive results.

The military men who still dominate the government in Thailand have an opportunity here to show statesmanship, and to use their close personal ties to Min Aung Hlaing to explore possible openings.

China’s influence will also be critical.

Will it sit back, and wait to see if the military crushes the protest movement, and then resume business as usual, or will it join the search for a negotiated way out?

China has yet to reveal its hand in this fiendishly complex diplomatic game.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-56192105

The Tribune – Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa: No plan to join Aam Aadmi Party

Sanjeev Singh Bariana – Tribune News Service

Chandigarh – Panjab – India, 09 April 2021. Shiromani Akali Dal (Democratic) leader Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa today ruled out any plans to join the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). He was reacting to a statement by senior AAP leader Harpal Cheema yesterday, claiming his party leaders had met Dhindsa, inviting SAD (D) leaders to join them.

Cheema had claimed SAD (D) leaders, including Dhindsa, would join the AAP.

Reacting to the statement, Dhindsa said: “A few AAP leaders from Delhi did meet me but there was no talk of anyone joining the party.

We are in fact getting messages from the SAD, but there is no chance of joining anyone. We are trying to revive the traditional and pure house of the Akalis.”

Refuting the development following a meeting between senior Dhindsa and AAP leaders, Parminder Dhindsa said: “Ours is a panthic party and there is no question of joining the AAP.

Yes, we can work together in the interest of the welfare of the state with like-minded people, including AAP. As a political entity, we have a distinct set of goals that are different from others. We will definitely not change our original entity just for selfish political gains.”

Denying formal talks with the SAD (D), Cheema said: “We are only working on possible alliances with parties who will like to get out of the mould of traditional political work for reviving the glory of Punjab.”

https://www.tribuneindia.com/news/punjab/sukhdev-singh-dhindsa-no-plan-to-join-aam-aadmi-party-236939

Pieter Friedrich – Fascism of India’s RSS Denounced by European Members of Parliament

German and French MPs concerned by rise of the paramilitary

“The RSS is a Hindu nationalist paramilitary group, whose early leaders openly admired Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini, and which has been repeatedly accused of stoking inter-religious hatred and committing acts of violence,” stated Deputy Clémentine Autain in France’s National Assembly on 23 March.

Autain was posing a parliamentary question to the French Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs regarding a 9 February visit by France’s Ambassador to India, Emmanuel Lenain, to the headquarters of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

“The deputy would like to know what is the link between the French government and the RSS, an organization which does not hold governmental functions and elective mandates,” said Autain. “Are there any plans for other meetings between French officials and leaders of the RSS?”

“Attacks against religious and ethnic minorities have also increased under the current government of India, led by the Bharatiya Janata party (BJP), an offshoot of the RSS,” warned Autain. As these attacks continue, India’s international reputation has slipped.

A Swedish institute recently declared India is an “electoral autocracy,” a US institute downgraded the country to “partly free,” and a growing number of elected officials like Autain are not only formally voicing concerns about the RSS but also referencing the paramilitary’s connections to the European fascist movements of the 1920s-1940s.

“The BJP is seen as the political wing of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the radical Hindu, paramilitary ‘largest volunteer corps in the world,’” declared a group of nearly a dozen German parliamentarians from Die Linke Party in a parliamentary question posed in early 2021.

“The ideology of the RSS is based on the idea of a leadership claim by political Hinduism (Hindutva) and the political striving to create a state according to radical Hindu rules. It was inspired by the fascist movements in Europe led by Mussolini and Hitler.”

Under the current BJP regime, claimed the German group, “The police and the military use violence against activists and protesters, human rights defenders are spied on, wiretapped, searched and harassed, freedom of the press is increasingly restricted, and arbitrary arrests, violence, torture and extrajudicial killings are widespread.

The Indian government uses a multitude of draconian laws to muzzle government critics and to prevent human rights defenders from doing their legitimate work under the guise of national security.”

Furthermore, they warned, “The RSS is also represented in other countries such as the USA, the United Kingdom, Canada and Germany by the Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (HSS) and advocates its interests on a political, economic and cultural level.”

Enquiring about Germany’s perspective on the current circumstances in India, the group asked: “To what extent does the Federal Government see a deterioration in the human rights situation, the rule of law and democracy in India since the election of Prime Minister Narendra Modi?”

Moreover, they enquired: “How does the federal government position itself towards the RSS, especially in view of the Hindu nationalist ideology?”

Additionally, they questioned: “What information does the Federal Government have regarding the RSS properties in Germany (HSS), in particular with regard to its founder and the managing director, financing, main activities and meetings with politicians or public authorities?”

In July 2019, German Ambassador to India Walter Lindner stirred controversy and sparked global coverage after he met with the RSS chief at the paramilitary’s headquarters.

“German ambassador causes outrage visiting fascist Indian group,” reported The Jerusalem Post, which added, “The RSS shares the fascist ideology of the Nazi Party and supports extreme Hindu nationalism.”

In November 2020, Australian High Commissioner Barry O’Farrell followed in Lindner’s footsteps. “He’s only the second senior diplomat from any country to meet the RSS at their offices in recent times,” announced Australian Senator Janet Rice.

“This is a disgrace. We believe that the high commissioner should resign.”

Speaking on the floor of the Australian Parliament, Rice denounced the RSS as “a fascist organization that openly admits admiration for Adolf Hitler and the appalling genocide that occurred under his Nazi regime.”

She continued: “Time and time again, the RSS has attacked Indian people’s rights to freedom of expression, freedom of religion and safety.

Their advocacy of a Hindu Rashtra [nation] is for an India where, by definition, minorities are denied rights and privileges. They demonize and encourage persecution of some of the non-Hindu citizens of India, particularly those of Muslim background.”

As BJP rule of India enters its seventh year with RSS member Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the helm, the paramilitary’s influence appears certain to expand.

“The BJP relies on the RSS for manpower and organizing grassroots electoral support,” explained a Central Intelligence Agency report in the 1990s. According to a former US ambassador to India, “The RSS can survive without the BJP but the BJP cannot exist without the RSS.”

So long as the BJP remains in power, the RSS’s grip over the country’s circumstances will likely only tighten. Considering that, it is probable that visits to the RSS by senior diplomats from abroad will increase, but so also will international awareness and criticism of the paramilitary.

Pieter Friedrich is a freelance journalist specializing in analysis of South Asian affairs. He is the author of Sikh Caucus: Siege in Delhi, Surrender in Washington and Saffron Fascists: India’s Hindu Nationalist Rulers as well as co-author of Captivating the Simple-Hearted: A Struggle for Human Dignity in the Indian Subcontinent.

Discover more by him at

www.PieterFriedrich.net

First Post – Sunni Waqf Board to move Allahabad HC against verdict ordering ASI survey of Varanasi’s Gyanwapi mosque

Sunni Central Waqf Board chairperson Zufar Ahmad Farooqui said that the order was ‘questionable’ because no evidence has been produced before the court that suggests that there was a prior existing mandir at the site of the mosque.

Lucknow – UP – India, 08 April 2021. The Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board said on Thursday that it would challenge in the high court the Varanasi court order on the disputed premises claimed both by the Kashi Vishwanath mandir and the Gyanwapi mosque.

The order, given by a senior division civil court, asked the state government to get the disputed premises examined by a five-member team of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) at its expense.

In a statement, Sunni Central Waqf Board chairperson Zufar Ahmad Farooqui said the order would be challenged before the Allahabad High Court.

“Our understanding is clear that this case is barred by the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991,” Faruqi said.

“The Places of Worship Act was upheld by a five-judge constitution bench of the Supreme Court in the Ayodhya judgment. The status of the Gyanwapi mosque is, as such, beyond question,” he said.

The chairperson added that the order was “questionable” because technical evidence could only supplement certain foundational facts.

“No evidence has been produced before the court that suggests that there was a prior existing mandir at the site of the mosque,” he said.

Even in the Ayodhya judgment, the ASI excavation was ultimately of no use. The ASI did not find proof that the Babri Masjid was built upon demolition of a mandir, Farooqui said.

The Supreme Court has specifically observed that there was no such evidence and this practice of mosques being “investigated” by the ASI has to be stopped, the statement said.

“We will be approaching the Hon’ble high court immediately against this unwarranted order,” it added.

https://www.firstpost.com/india/sunni-waqf-board-to-move-allahabad-hc-against-verdict-ordering-asi-survey-of-varanasis-gyanwapi-mosque-9509731.html

The Nation – Pakistan-Democratic-Movement – A divided movement

Senator Rehman Malik

Islambad – Pakistan, 08 April 2021. There is hardly any good news for the people of Pakistan. The people have the right to assume that Pakistani politics is basically played for power and there is nothing for the common man.

The division of PDM was not good news for Pakistani politics. Difference of opinion exists everywhere and in politics, difference of opinion is not only the beauty of democracy but an integral part of any political movement and dialogue.

The initiative to create PDM was good but unfortunately, soon it fell prey to certain major mistakes. Some of those mistakes have been expressed below as a lesson for a future political roadmap.

I would like to put a question to the public; what action was taken against Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan leader Owais Noorani when on October 25, 2020, while addressing a public meeting organised by PDM in Quetta Balochistan, he stated, “We want Balochistan as an independent state.”

Did PDM take any action against him and his party or issue any explanation?

Similarly what action was taken when PkMAP chief Mehmood Khan Achakzai spoke against Punjab while addressing a PDM rally in Lahore in December last year.

Did PDM issue any show-cause notice to Mr Achakzai and take any action? These voices of provincialism and separation of Balochistan coming from the platform of PDM caused fear among the people and they have the right to ask what service PDM is doing for the integrity and unity of Pakistan if such highly controversial statements come from its rallies.

PPP had the right to express its opinion and I genuinely advised PDM not to resign from the assemblies.

What was the harm in the statement of President Asif Ali Zardari if he informed PDM about his party’s Central Executive Committee (CEC) decision on resignation from assemblies rather than accepting on the spot.

He democratically informed the PDM that PPP would go back to CEC to get a fresh mandate over the issue.

PDM should have served a show-cause notice to itself as the gentleman Maulana Ghafoor Haidari could not bag the seven votes of PDM while contesting elections for deputy chair of the Senate.

PDM should have announced an investigation to know those seven senators from PDM who did not vote for Ghafoor Haidari for deputy chairman Senate.

Who were those seven senators and which party backstabbed PDM? I think PDM had stood dissolved on the same day when many from PDM voted against PDM during the election of Chairman and Deputy Chairman of Senate.

I agree with the demand that PDM needs to investigate as to how seven votes of Yousuf Raza Gilani were managed to be declared invalid. Has PDM investigated who openly got these votes invalid by asking the members to stamp on Gilani’s name instead of the box?

People have the right to have clarification as to how Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani was defeated at the cost of a favour to someone.

Did PDM issue any show cause to itself or to its President as to why it happened under his nose? Yousuf Raza Gilani has the right to know why he was sacrificed for some unknown cause.

The leadership of PDM must know and the truth will prevail if PDM does not bring these miserable failures itself to the public.

Regarding some doubts on the selection of the opposition leader, I wish the opposition leader should have been elected through consensus.

PPP leaders, Senator Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar and Senator Raza Rabbani, and Br Aitzaz Ahsan have publicly criticised their party for accepting the votes of Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) members to get Yousuf Raza Gilani elected as the opposition leader in Senate, which displays acceptance of the freedom of speech and difference of opinion.

No rebuttal was issued and no action was initiated against these senior leaders of the party for criticism as PPP upholds democratic norms within the party as well as believes in freedom of speech within the party and at the national level.

I still pray that PDM brings PPP back to the fold by properly apologising after the withdrawal of the show-cause notice.

Whatever is happening on the platform of PDM is highly undesirable and looks like the “Premature Democratic Movement” which ultimately benefited the government and next it looks like PDM will stand for “Pakistan Divided Movements’’.

The public is crushed between the government and the opposition whereas PDM looks like a live show for the TV channels to create some spicy material for evening shows. Previously it was PDM versus the government but now it is a triangle.

Actually, I get disappointed when such movements are initiated without proper homework. Let me tell you, a businessman has already initiated a strong movement to bring PTI close to two political parties of PDM and it will be a shocking surprise for many.

Can the opposition/PDM give the countdown of what pressure it has built for Kashmir and against the government’s move of independence of SBP? What programme/agenda has PDM given for a common man and have they protested against price hikes?

Let me conclude with an independent mind, that serving a show-cause notice to PPP means disservice to PDM and looks like deliberate action to bury PDM, but I hope PDM takes action against those members who made both PDM candidates lose in the Senate.

Many parties in the PDM are looking forward to having some share in power and rewards from some special angels like the past.

These special angles distribute blessings of power to many and it is expected that they will receive those blessings after Eid, for which some will travel out of the capitol and some will travel in. Let us see who the lucky ones are.

Note:
Opinions expressed are solely my own and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of my party.

https://nation.com.pk/08-Apr-2021/pdm-a-divided-movement

Sikh24.com – ‘Delhi police forced me to sign blank papers,’ reveals a youth farmer indicted in 26 January’s FIR

Chandigarh – Panjab – India, 07 April 2021. Jammu based youth farmer Mandeep Singh, who was arrested by the Delhi police from Jammu on 22 February along with another farmer leader Mohinder Singh Khalsa, has been briefly interviewed by Sikh24 to highlight the plight of agitating farmers in India.

On 23 March 2021, the duo arrested farmers were brought out on bail by the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee.

Speaking to Sikh24, Mandeep Singh has narrated the entire episode of his arrest by the Delhi police’s crime branch from Jammu.

“First, I was called to the local police station where the SHO seized my phone while saying that the SSP was calling me to his office,” he said while adding that the Delhi police’s crime branch arrested him and Mohinder Singh Khalsa from the SSP office.

“After taking us to Delhi, the crime branch kept us for about 4-5 hours and later we were handed over to the Investigating Officer Pankaj Arora.

The IO started interrogating me while showing me the videos of January 26’s incident and asked me to identify various persons but I was not aware of their identity,” he said.

“The IO presented us before the local judge seeking our police remand for 5 days but the judge sanctioned only one-day police remand,” said Mandeep Singh.

“During the police remand, we were tortured mentally by the IO, Delhi police, NIA, and IB through illogical questioning,” he said while adding that their style of questioning was seeming pre-planned,” he said.

“Strangely, the Intelligence Bureau and the National Investigation Agency was not leaving any stone unturned to make me admit that I was a drug addict as well as had connections with pro-Khalistan elements,” he revealed while saying that the interrogation was not in the context of his arrest’s reason.

Mandeep Singh firmly said that his faith in protesting against the ills has strengthened much more after being arrested by the Delhi police. “Now, I am feeling more enthusiastic towards the farmers’ agitation against three farm bills,” he said.