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All-party meeting held in New Delhi ahead of Parliament session            Election Commission announces by-polls to six Rajya Sabha seats            Maharashtra Cabinet expanded with induction of 13 new ministers            Death toll mounts to 83 due to Encephalitis in Bihar            CC World Cup: Arch-rivals India and Pakistan face off today           

Text Bulletins Details


Midday News

1400 HRS
20.05.2019

THE HEADLINES:

  • Political parties hold meetings to discuss post poll scenario.

  • Counting of votes for 542 Lok Sabha seats to take place on Thursday.

  • Stock markets and Rupee register strong gains after exit polls predict NDA return to power.

  • Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath sacks estranged BJP ally OP Rajbhar from the Cabinet.

  • And, second India Open International Boxing Tournament begins in Assam this evening.

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Political activities have gained momentum in the National Capital, with the leaders of various parties holding consultations on setting up of a new political order.

BJP President Amit Shah will meet leaders of National Democratic Alliance tomorrow ahead of declaration of poll results on Thursday. The meeting will take place in New Delhi where top NDA leaders will chalk out a strategy on the possible outcome of the elections. Mr. Shah is also likely to host a dinner for them. The meeting comes in the backdrop of exit polls which have predicted a return of BJP-led NDA government at the Centre. The leaders of BJP-led National Democratic Alliance have expressed confidence that the NDA would get a clear mandate with a comfortable majority. Opposition leaders, on the other hand, are preparing for eventuality of a fractured mandate, consolidation of non-NDA parties and other splinter groups for formation of a new government at the Centre.

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu has been holding talks with top opposition leaders, including Congress President Rahul Gandhi and NCP Chief Sharad Pawar, in New Delhi. Mr Naidu has been meeting with leaders of different parties to rally support for a non-BJP government at the Centre.

On Saturday, Mr Naidu had met Mr Gandhi and Mr Pawar before flying to Lucknow to hold talks with Samajwadi Party Chief Akhilesh Yadav and BSP President Mayawati. He also met Loktantrik Janata Dal leader Sharad Yadav and leaders of the Communist Party of India.

The TDP Chief had earlier held several rounds of discussions with TMC Chief Mamata Banerjee, AAP national convener Arvind Kejriwal and CPI (M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury. We bring you a desk report:

"BJP did not have pre-poll alliances apart from the regular NDA constituents. Congress also desisted from having alliance at the national level. The party tried to have some state-level tie-ups with smaller parties other than the members of the United Progressive Alliance. An Alliance was formed in Uttar Pradesh, jointly led by former Chief Ministers Akhilesh Yadav of Samajwadi Party, Mayawati of Bahujan Samaj Party and consisting Ajit Singh's Rashtriya Lok Dal along with several other constituents including the leftist parties as well. While almost all the exit polls conducted by different agencies have predicted return of the NDA in power with a clear majority, there is a divergence with regard to the outcome in Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal which together account for 122 seats. It remains to be seen how the things take shape in case of a fractured mandate. The post-poll reorganization of forces and the regional parties would play the key role in formation of the new government at the Centre in such a situation. Sanjeev Jasrotia, AIR News, Desk Report."

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The News Services Division of All India Radio will mount a special bilingual programme on the Post Poll Political Developments. Tune into the FM Gold Channel of All India Radio at 9.30 tonight to listen to this special discussion.

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The over month-long general elections to elect the 17th Lok Sabha concluded successfully, with the seventh and final phase of polls recording around 65 per cent turnout in 59 constituencies yesterday. Briefing media in New Delhi, Deputy Election Commissioner Umesh Sinha said 2019 general elections were more peaceful as compared to the 2014 edition.

With the completion of polling, the fate of 8,049 candidates, in the fray for 542 Lok Sabha seats, has been sealed.

Counting of votes along with four state assemblies of Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim will be taken up on Thursday.

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The News Services Division of All India Radio (AIR) has made elaborate arrangements for providing authentic and latest results of Lok Sabha and Assembly elections in four states. For the first time, AIR, the biggest radio network of the country, will continuously broadcast special programmes on election results for 40 hours.

Similarly, all 46 Regional News Units of AIR through out the country will mount special programmes and news bulletins in regional languages of their respective states. Hourly news bulletins will be available across the country through various channels like FM Gold, FM Rainbow, Vivdh Bharati and other local channels of AIR.

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A BJP delegation met the Election Commission in New Delhi today and demanded re-polling in some areas particularly in West Bengal. Talking to reporters after the meeting, senior party leader and Union Minister Piyush Goyal accused TMC chief Mamata Banerjee of threatening BJP candidates and workers. He said the party has urged the Commission to take cognisance of the matter.

"जो-जो पोलिंग बूथ से रिपोल मांगा गया पहले फेज से आखिरी फेज क। इस सबको मद्देनजर रखते हुए हमें ऐसा लगता है कि वहां पर अब से ले के काउंटिंग तक और काउंटिंग के बाद भी शायद राजनीतिक हिंसा होने की संभावना है। इसलिए हमने रिक्वेस् किया है मान् कमीशन को कि सभी ईवीएम स्ट्रोंग में सेंट्रल र्फोसेज बड़े पैमाने पर तैनात करी जाए और काउंटिंग तक और काउंटिंग के बाद भी जब तक कोड ऑफ कंडेक् है। जब तक ये र्फोसेज पश्चिम बंगाल में रखी जाए।"

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In the just concluded Lok Sabha elections, a total of 466 candidates contested 42 Parliamentary seats in West Bengal. Fifty-four of them were women contestants. There were, however, no women candidates on 12 Parliamentary seats. More from our correspondent:

"Trinamool Congress put up women candidates in 17 seats while Congress in 8, CPI(M) in 6, BJP in 5, BSP and RSP in 1 seat each. There were 16 independent women candidates were also in the fray. The highest number of women candidates contested at Jadavpur, Kolkata South and Uluberia Parliamentary seats this time. 4 number of women candidates each fought from these seats. In 2014 Lok sabha elections altogether 51 women candidates contested from 42 Lok sabha seats in the state. All the 12 women candidates put up by the Trinamool Congress got elected while all others lost. Arijit Chakraborty, AIR News, Kolkata.

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Stock markets and the Rupee made strong gains after exit poll results suggested that the ruling NDA will return to power.

BSE Sensex zoomed over 1000 points while rupee gained 79 paise against the dollar. More from our correspondent:

"Domestic markets have welcomed the exit polls which forecast another term for Prime Minister Narendra Modi and absolute majority to the NDA government. But there is one more reason behind the enthusiasm in the market and it is the appreciation of rupee by 79 paise in the morning.These events have added a sense of high enthusiasm among the domestic investors. Meanwhile, market regulator Sebi and stock exchanges have beefed up their surveillance mechanism to check any manipulative activities in the market this week in view of the high-octane election related events lined up. Shailesh Patil, AIR News, Mumbai."

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Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath sacked estranged BJP ally OP Rajbhar of Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party (SBSP) from the cabinet today. The development comes after Mr Rajbhar's prolonged defiance of BJP-led NDA and also acting against the alliance. Mr Rajbhar fought the current Lok Sabha election on several seats separately on his party symbol. More from our correspondent:

"Governor Ram Naik has given his consent on Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath's recommendation to remove Rajbhar, the minister for Backward class welfare and ‘Divyangjan’ empowerment. There are total of four MLAs of SBSP which will not affect the majority figure of BJP in the house. It is reported that besides the cabinet minister post, the government also sacked six SBSP leaders from public sector units. The difference between the two parties emerged when Mr Rajbhar was denied seat to contest the Lok Sabha election. Later disgruntled Mr Rajbhar fielded his party candidates on 39 seats including Varanasi against Prime Minister Narendra Modi also in current election. However, Mr Rajbhar claimed that he had resigned from the ministry on April 13 but his resignation was not accepted by the Chief Minister. MS Yadav, AIR News, Lucknow".

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Former Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar today moved the Supreme Court. He sought extension of the seven-day protection granted to him by the apex court in connection with the Saradha chit fund scam case.

Mr Kumar's lawyer mentioned the matter for urgent listing before a vacation bench comprising Justices Indira Banerjee and Sanjiv Khanna. The counsel said the apex court had on 17th May granted seven days' time to Mr Kumar to approach the competent court for legal remedies but they want extension of time as lawyers in Kolkata courts are presently on strike.

On the 17th, a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi had withdrawn the protection from arrest granted to Rajeev Kumar by its 5th February order. The bench, however, had said that the protection to him would continue for seven days to enable him to approach the competent court for relief.

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External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will attend a two-day meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), beginning  in Kyrgyz capital Bishkek tomorrow. The two-day meeting will discuss several pressing issues, including terrorism.

The External Affairs Ministry said the Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) will exchange views on issues of international and regional importance, besides reviewing the preparation for the SCO Summit in Bishkek from 13th to 14th June.

India became a full member of the the China-dominated grouping in 2017 and New Delhi's entry has increased the bloc's heft in regional geo-politics, besides giving it a pan-Asian hue.

Last month, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman attended the SCO Defence Ministers' conclave in Bishkek.

India was an observer at the SCO since 2005 and has generally participated in the ministerial-level meetings of the grouping which focus mainly on security and economic cooperation in the Eurasian region.

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The Second India Open International Boxing Tournament will  begin in Guwahati this evening. Sixteen countries will participate in the tournament at Sarusajai stadium where nearly 200 boxers will be vying for the podium. More from our correspondent:

"India has fielded a strong contingent of 38 men and 37 women in the tournament including Mary Kom. Six boxers that include Shiva Thapa from Assam would be playing the country in front of the home crowd. 7 Indian boxers would be in action on the inaugural day. Last year, India won 6 gold medals. Competition will be held in a total of 18 categories, 10 in men and 8 in women. The gold medalist will get 2500 US dollar and Silver medalist will earn 1000 US dollar. Manas Pratim Sarma, AIR News, Guwahati."

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