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Delegation comprising former legislators likely to discuss BDC polls

Tense time: A CRPF jawan frisking a man in Srinagar after a grenade attack in Anantnag district.NISSAR AHMADNISSAR AHMAD

A National Conference (NC) delegation from Jammu will be allowed to meet party president Farooq Abdullah and vice-president Omar Abdullah, who have been detained here, on Sunday.

On Saturday, 14 persons were injured in a grenade attack in south Kashmir.

NC spokesperson Madan Mantoo said the government granted the request from NC provincial president Devender Singh Rana to Governor Satya Pal Malik on Thursday.

“A delegation, headed by Mr. Rana and comprising former legislators, will reach Srinagar on Sunday,” he said.

Mr. Rana, who was among scores of NC leaders freed recently from house arrest in Jammu, has described the detention of the NC top leadership as “contempt of democracy”.

Sources said the NC delegation would discuss with the leaders the election to the Block Development Council.

Fourteen civilians were injured in a grenade blast outside the Deputy Commissioner’s office in Anantnag. A police official said the grenade exploded on the roadside around 10.30 a.m. on Saturday, outside the office.

He alleges conspiracy to eliminate leaders groomed by Rahul

Ashok Tanwar at a press conference after resigning from the party. PTI

The Congress on Saturday suffered a setback as the former president of its Haryana unit, Ashok Tanwar, resigned from the primary membership ahead of the October 21 Assembly election. He alleged a “conspiracy to eliminate all leaders groomed by Rahul Gandhi”.

In his resignation letter, posted on Twitter and addressed to party president Sonia Gandhi, he alleged that the “Congress is going through existential crises, not because of its political opponents but because of a serious internal contradiction”.

“I, after several months of consideration, tender my resignation from the primary membership of the Congress party, which I nurtured from my sweat and blood. My fight is not personal but against the system which is destroying the grand old party,” the letter said.

“In the last few years, numerous conspiracies are being hatched to eliminate all those young leaders who have been groomed by Shri Rahul Gandhi in the last one and half decade. Unfortunately, most victims of this conspiracy may not have the courage to stand up, but I think it is my moral duty to resist, oppose and expose this onslaught.”

Mr. Tanwar was upset after being replaced by Kumari Selja and being denied ticket to contest the Assembly polls.

Prime Minister once again assures Hasina on the issue at a meeting in New Delhi

Green light: PM Modi and his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina inaugurating projects on Saturday. Sandeep Saxena The Hindu

Two weeks after they met in New York on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has once again assured Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on the issue of the National Register of Citizens in Assam, officials said, after a meeting between the two here on Saturday.

They also discussed the fate of Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh and witnessed the exchange of seven MoUs.

“We think and have been assured that it is an internal matter of India. PM Modi has explained to PM Hasina how India intends to include everyone in the process. Our relations are the best of the best. But we will keep our eyes open to what we see as this proceeds,” said Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Shahidul Haque.

Responding to a question from The Hindu about the 1.9 million people declared non-citizens, whom Home Minister Amit Shah has said will be deported, Mr. Haque said, “We shouldn’t make a crisis out of nothing, and wait and see.”

“We are keeping a watch,” he said, speaking in Bengali.

According to officials, concerns over the NRC were raised by Ms. Hasina, and Mr. Modi explained that the NRC is a legal process that only relates to India, at present.

“The NRC is a court-mandated process, which is ongoing, and we will see as the situation emerges,” said an official.

1,897 problems identified; repair ‘soon’

Social Welfare Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam inspects a road in Shahdara. Special arrangement

A total of 1,897 problems were identified in 1,260 km of city roads under the jurisdiction of the Delhi government by 50 MLAs who inspected the spots with PWD engineers on Friday.

Of the 1,897 issues raised by the legislators, 1,181 were about roads being uneven, 583 for potholes and 133 about problems in roads due to ongoing work by other departments.

Large-scale exercise

The Delhi government said that repair works on these roads will begin “soon”, but did not give a definite timeline.

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said such a large-scale inspection of roads was carried out for the first time. “Even though a small percentage of city roads are under the Delhi government, lakhs of vehicles ply on them. This is the first time that roads are being inspected on such a large scale,” Mr. Kejriwal said.

Each MLA visited about 25 km of roads (50 km including both sides) with a PWD engineer and sent photos of the problematic areas to the control room through an app.

Photos sent via app

MLA Saurabh Bhardwaj, who visited the roads in his constituency Greater Kailash, said: “Through this app, we are sending the photos of broken roads and the exact location to the PWD. Coal tar roads often break due to rainwater, so we are appealing to the PWD to make concrete roads instead of coal tar ones. It is a matter of great pleasure for the people of Delhi that all their roads will be repaired soon and they would be rid of the problems they had to face everyday.”

Announcing the move earlier this week, Mr. Kejriwal had said: “Delhi is a State which attracts foreign tourists round the year. The deteriorating condition of the roads tarnishes the image of the city. That is why the government of Delhi has decided that it will repair the 1,260 km of PWD roads after obtaining the data on the potholes.”

‘Maldives cannot align with Organisation for Islamic Cooperation’

Mohamed Nasheed

Days after the 57-member Organisation for Islamic Cooperation (OIC) issued a statement on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, criticising India for continuing restrictions in Jammu & Kashmir, Maldivian Parliament Speaker and former President Mohamed Nasheed distanced his country from the statement, backing New Delhi’s stand on Article 370.

“The Maldives cannot be with the OIC on this issue. None or very few OIC countries are democracies and we don’t think they should be commenting on human rights in India, which is a democracy,” he told The Hindu during a short visit to New Delhi.

“There is nothing for us to comment on, as it has happened through Indian government processes; it is an internal matter for India,” he added.

When asked if Maldives saw the SAARC process as “dead” given India-Pakistan tensions, Mr. Nasheed seemed to diverge from the Indian position, suggesting that Pakistan should still be part of the regional grouping.

‘Can host SAARC’

“If [India doesn’t want to attend SAARC in Pakistan], we could host it in the Maldives, as we have in the past,” he said, adding that even if the SAARC process had died, it didn’t preclude the need for another regional group.

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