Congress says it won’t let Modi speak in Parliament unless he says sorry to Manmohan, Rahul attacks PM


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Outraged over Narendra Modi’s remarks against predecessor Manmohan Singh, the Congress warned on Wednesday that it will not let the Prime Minister speak in Parliament unless he apologises for his “unacceptable” comment.

Congress members in the Rajya Sabha staged a walkout soon after Modi accused Singh of “allowing corruption under his nose but at the same time managing to steer clear” of any charges. The Prime Minister was replying to a debate on the motion of thanks on the President’s address.

Terming the events in Parliament “shameful”, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi tweeted: “When a Prime Minister reduces himself to ridiculing his predecessor-years his senior, he hurts the dignity of the parliament &the nation.”

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Even though many scams took place in the country (in the previous UPA regime), Singh’s image remained clean, Modi said, taking a dig at the former PM. “People should learn from Dr. Singh how to bathe in bathroom wearing a raincoat.”

“How can you have a dialogue with the opposition with this kind of language used against us… You can’t get personal in a debate,” senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal later told reporters in the Parliament House complex. “We too could get personal and start talking about things where the Prime Minister’s name has occurred but we never did that.”

While Singh did not respond to the Prime Minister’s statement, the Congress fielded all its senior leaders to attack Modi on the issue.

Former finance minister P Chidambaram claimed that the Prime Minister doesn’t come to the House to listen to anyone from the Opposition. “Today, he was scheduled to come in at 5pm. He deliberately did not come at that time and came only after the last speaker from the opposition had concluded. Then he begins his speech and within minutes attacks the former Prime Minister in the most unacceptable manner,” he said.

“It was in extremely poor taste. It is unbecoming of a Prime Minister to use such language against the former PM. It certainly is unbecoming of anyone to say such harsh, ugly statements about Dr Manmohan Singh. We are very disappointed and angry.”

We have expressed our protest by walking out. We could have stayed back, created a ruckus, stormed the well of the House and shouted down the Prime Minister. But that would have in the circumstances of today brought us down to the level of the debate which the Prime Minister wanted. We don’t want such a debate to take place. We want the people to know that no Prime Minister has ever used such a language against a former Prime Minister,” Chidambaram added.

In a strongly worded attack on the government’s demonetisation exercise in the Rajya Sabha during the winter session in November last year, Singh said that several deaths and distress among the poor, farmers and small traders convinced him the demonetisation plan led to “organised loot and legalised plunder”.

On Wednesday, in an apparent reference to these comments, PM Modi said, “We have the ability to pay back in the same coin,” Modi said. “If anyone speaks like this, he should also be ready to face the consequences.”

But Sibal defended the use of words “plunder and loot” by Singh, saying those were not personal remarks against Modi but about the demonetisation policy. “We have never seen such arrogance. There is a dignity of the chair he occupies. The PM gives speeches in Parliament as if he speaks in a locality or in a ground. He doesn’t know what to say and what not in Parliament. The PM thinks that only he is clean and the rest all of us are black marketers,” he said.

From the government benches, information and broadcasting minister Venkaiah Naidu supported PM Modi and said that the Congress had earlier described Modi as Hitler as well as Mussolini.

However, Congress’ deputy leader in the Rajya Sabha Anand Sharma refuted these charges. “Never ever have we called the Prime Minister names even if he functions in a dictatorial manner. The fact is that he is behaving in an extremely insulting and arrogant manner towards the entire opposition. He has also insulted the memory of India’s martyred Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and used unacceptable language against the former Prime Minister. We cautioned him initially not to drag the debate to such a low level,” he said.

Congress’ chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala tweeted: “PM is not a person but an institution it has a decorum, propriety, morality and discipline in language. Sadly, Modi ji forgets he is PM of India!”

Via (HT)

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Earthquake in Uttarakhand, strong tremors jolt Delhi, north India; NDRF teams rushed


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A 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck Uttarakhand, sending tremors across Delhi-NCR and several states of north and eastern India on Monday night, shaking buildings, rattling window panes and sending people scurrying out of their homes.

The earthquake jolted the North India at 10:33pm and tremors were felt for about 30 seconds. There was no loss of life or damage to property, however one was injured in Uttarakhand’s Rudraprayag district, which according to National Seismological Bureau was the epicentre of the quake.

“The depth of the quake was 33km and it occurred at 10.33 PM,” said JL Gautam, operations head at the NSB, a unit of ministry of earth sciences.

According to the US Geological Survey, the magnitude was 5.6.

Uttarakhand, which falls in the Himalayan belt, is known for high seismic activities.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Twitter said he had spoken to officials and taken stock of the situation.

A home ministry spokesperson said home minister Rajnath Singh had asked for a detailed report and the NDRF has been put on high alert.

Union home ministry said NDRF teams have been rushed from Ghaziabad to Uttarakhand to conduct rescue and relief operations, if such a situation arises.

Two teams of National Disaster Response Force were rushed to Rudraprayag, NDRF director general RK Pachnanada told PTI.

He said that one more team has been put on standby and will be dispatched depending on the developing situation.

PM Narendra Modi also tweeted: “Spoke to officials & took stock of the situation in the wake of the earthquake felt in various parts of North India. PMO is in touch with officials in Uttarakhand, which is the epicentre of the quake. I pray for everyone’s safety & wellbeing.”

Ashok Kumar, a senior official in Dehradun police, said, “The quake was quite heavy. It lasted for 25 or 30 seconds, but there are no reports of damage so far received.”

Amit Negi, secretary of disaster management in the state, said they have alerted all districts and were coordinating with them, but that there were no reports of damage so far.

In Delhi, panicky people rushed out of their homes as the quake hit the city of 16 million people.

Tremors were also felt across Punjab, Haryana and their common capital Chandigarh too. Tremors were felt as far as Kolkata, reports said.

In Chandigarh, many people came running out of their homes screaming. “I was sleeping, when my bed started shaking. I ran towards my mother’s room,” said Kirti, a resident of Sector 20.

“I was driving, so I didn’t feel the tremor. But I noticed girls were screaming and they were running out of their homes,” said Reena from Sector 27.

Another resident of the same sector, Deepinder Kohli, said: “I was watching TV when my chair started shaking. I looked at the fan and it was moving. I didn’t realise, until my children came running towards me shouting.” (With inputs from agencies)

Source: MSN

 

Narendra Modi’s victory tweet creates record


NEW DELHI: On counting day, a tweet by BJP’s prime ministerial candidate, Narendra Modi, has broken all records in India becoming the most retweeted tweet ever in the country.

While the National Democratic Alliance is leading by a large margin as per current trends, Modi proclaimed victory with a tweet that says “India has won! भारत की विजय। अच्छे दिन आने वाले हैं।” (India has won! We’re approaching the good days). At the time of writing this story, the tweet has been retweeted 39,742 times and favourited 21,691 times.

Twitter India’s official account also confirmed that the tweet is indeed the most retweeted tweet ever from India.

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It’s worth pointing out that Twitter has played a major role in the Indian elections with candidates using it as a medium to reach out to voters and news organizations leveraging its capability to disseminate information and update users. Just a day ago, Twitter India had announced that more than 56 million election-related Tweets were tweeted from January 1 till May 12, in 2014.

Today’s victory tweet has been retweeted almost 8 times more compared to Narendra Modi’s other highly retweeted tweets. Modi’s last highly retweeted tweet had registered 4842 retweets.

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The other top retweeted tweets from India include tweets by Salman Khan, Sachin Tendulkar, Rajinikanth and Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

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Earlier in the year, during the Oscars ceremony, host Ellen DeGeneres managed to set a retweet record with her star-studded selfie that caused a Twitter outage that lasted well over 20 minutes.

The tweet has been retweeted 3,42 million times retweets and favourited 2.02 million times, even breaking a record set by President Barack Obama’s tweet with his picture hugging First Lady Michelle Obama after his re-election in 2012. That tweet had got merely 774,931 retweets.