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Badminton star Saina Nehwal to join BJP shortly

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Badminton star Saina Nehwal is going to join the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Wednesday, news agency ANI reported.

Haryana-born Nehwal will join the BJP reportedly in the presence of party chief Jagat Prakash Nadda.

Nehwal, 29, has won more than 24 major international titles so far.

Nehwal married fellow shuttler Parupalli Kashyap in 2018 in Hyderabad.

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‘Prime Minister has destroyed our position, betrayed our army’: Rahul Gandhi

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Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday launched another attack on the Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the China issue.

He said that China cannot be permitted to get away with this “unacceptable usurpation” of India’s land.

While speaking at the Congress Working Committee (CWC), he said, “China has brazenly occupied our territory. The Prime Minister has destroyed our position and betrayed our army by accepting their position that they occupied no Indian land. The Chinese cannot be permitted to get away with this unacceptable usurpation of our land.”

On Saturday, the PMO said that PM Modi was clear that India would respond firmly to any transgression attempts at the LAC.

The PMO said that “attempts are being made in some quarters to give a mischievous interpretation” to his remarks at the All-Party Meeting (APM) held on Friday on the Galwan stand-off and the killing of 20 Indian soldiers by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) troops on June 14-15 night.

The Prime Minister’s Office said the PM had specifically emphasized that Indian forces now decisively counter any violations on the LAC (unhe rokte hain, unhe tokte hain) in contrast to the past neglect of such challenges.

Congress president Sonia Gandhi has also lashed out at the Centre over the economic crisis due to the Coronavirus pandemic and the tension along the border with China, attributing them to the “mismanagement” of the BJP-led NDA government and the “wrong policies” pursued by it.

In her opening remarks at the Congress Working Committee meeting today, she added that the “cumulative effect is widespread misery, fear and danger to the security and territorial integrity of the country”.

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Rahul Gandhi launches fresh attack on PM, says satellite images shows China has intruded

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Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday launched a fresh attack on the Narendra Modi government over the recent India-China face-off by saying that satellite images show that China has intruded into Indian territory.

In a tweet in Hindi, Gandhi said, Prime Minister said nobody intruded and nobody has occupied our territory, but the satellite images show clearly that China near Pangong lake has occupied the holy land of Bharat Mata.”

Rahul Gandhi used an image with the tweet shown by one of the TV channels.

Earlier in the day, Gandhi had mocked PM by calling him “Sur(r)ender Modi” instead of Narendra Modi and accused him of conceding Indian territory to the Chinese.

Former Congress president took to Twitter and said “Narendra Modi is actually Surender Modi,” sharing an article by The Japan Times with his post.

Earlier, Gandhi on Saturday had made allegations that PM Modi had “surrendered” Indian territory to China in Ladakh’s Galwan Valley, tweeted two questions for the government, “PM has surrendered Indian territory to Chinese aggression. If the land was Chinese: 1. Why were our soldiers killed? 2. Where were they killed?”

At least 20 Indian soldiers, including an officer, were killed in an unprecedented violent face-off with Chinese troops in Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh on June 15. Gandhi has been attacking the PM Modi-led government since the incident took place.

However, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s office had clarified on Saturday and countered opposition’s attack, saying “attempts are being made in some quarters to give a mischievous interpretation” to Modi’s remarks at the All-Party Meeting held on Friday on the Galwan stand-off.

The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) said, the PM specifically emphasized Indian forces now decisively counter any violations on LAC (unhe rokte hain, unhe tokte hain) in contrast to the past neglect of such challenges.

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Petrol, diesel prices hiked for 10th day in a row; Sonia Gandhi writes to PM Modi demanding rollback

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Petrol and disease prices were hiked for the tenth day in a row on Tuesday, by the state-owned oil marketing companies across the country, ever since they restarted daily price review, after ending an 82-day hiatus due to lockdown.

Petrol price in Delhi was hiked to Rs 76.73 per litre from Rs 76.26, while diesel rates were increased to Rs 75.19 a litre from Rs 74.26, the price notification said. In Mumbai the cost of petrol is at Rs 83.62 for per litre and diesel is at Rs 73.75 per litre. While in another metro city Kolkata consumers will have to shell out Rs 78.55 per litre and  for diesel Rs 70.84 per litre. While the southern city Chennai the prices for the two fuels stand at Rs 80.37 for a litre of petrol and people will get diesel at Rs 73.17 per litre.

Congress President Sonia Gandhi has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and demanded that fuel prices should be slashed as crude prices have fallen across the world.

“I see no logic in why the Government would even consider such a price increase at a time when the economic impact of Covid-19 is depriving millions of jobs and livelihood, devastating business big and small, rapidly eroding the income of the middle class, even as farmers are struggling to sow the crop for the Kharif season,” wrote Sonia Gandhi.

The letter comes in the wake of fuel prices daily hike taking the total increase since the resumption of the dynamic price revision system to more than Rs 5 per litre.

Sonia wrote in the letter, “I urge you to rollback this increase and pass on the benefit of low oil prices directly to the citizens of this country.”

Sonia Gandhi said, she is “deeply distressed” that in these exceedingly difficult times since the beginning of March, the Government has taken the wholly insensitive decision to increase petrol and diesel prices on no less than ten separate occasions.

The Congress President alleged that the Government is seeking to earn an additional revenue of nearly Rs 2,60,000 crore by these ill-advised hikes in excise duty and increase in the petrol and diesel prices.

Sonia in her letter said, “It is a matter of record that despite historically low oil prices over the last six years your government’s revenues have been massively enriched by the cumulative increase in excise duty on petrol and diesel on twelve different occasions (by an additional Rs 23.78 per litre on petrol and Rs 28.37 on diesel).

This translates into a 258 per cent increase in excise on petrol and 820 per cent hike in excise duty on diesel yielding in these six years a staggering Rs 18,00,000 crore from excise collection on petrol and diesel alone.

“If ever there was a time to deploy these resources in the service of the people, it is now,”said Sonia.

While Congress leader Rahul Gandhi also hit out at the Centre over daily increase in fuel prises on Monday.

He had tweeted, “Middle class, poor pay for gifts crony capitalists get.”

Middle class and the poor pay for the gifts the crony capitalists get. #शर्म_करो_लुटेरी_सरकार pic.twitter.com/q69cqlF83Q

— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) June 15, 2020

Putting together each day’s hike since the past 10 days, petrol price has gone up by Rs 5.47 per litre and diesel by Rs 5.8 a litre.

The hike in diesel rates is the highest daily increase since the state-owned fuel retailers started daily revision in rates in May 2017.

The freeze in rates was imposed in mid-March soon after the government hiked excise duty on petrol and diesel to shore up additional finances.

Oil PSUs Indian Oil Corp (IOC), Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL) and Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL) instead of passing on the excise duty hikes to customers adjusted them against the fall in the retail rates that was warranted because of fall in international oil prices.

Industry officials said the hike was necessitated because benchmark international rates have bounced back from a two-decade low.

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