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Modi invites entrepreneurs from across world to be part of India's growth story

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday invited entrepreneurs from across the globe to invest in India and become a part of the country's growth story, assuring them of the government's whole-hearted support.

 
Modi, Ivanka Trump attend GES 2017 in Hyderabad
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today invited entrepreneurs from across the globe to invest in India and become a part of the country's growth story, assuring them of the government's whole-hearted support.
 
"To my young entrepreneur friends from India, I would like to say: each of you has something valuable to contribute towards creating a New India by 2022. You are vehicles of change and instruments of India’s transformation," he said in his inaugural address at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit, 2017 here, an event hosted by the Government of India in partnership with the Government of the United States of America.
 
The Summit is being held in South Asia for the first time. It brings together leading investors, entrepreneurs, academicians, think-tanks and other stakeholders to propel the global entrepreneurship ecosystem.
 
Ms. Ivanka Trump, Advisor to US President Donald Trump and also his daughter, is leading the US contingent to the three-day event.
 
"This event not only connects the Silicon Valley with Hyderabad but also showcases the close ties between the United States of America and India. It underlines our shared commitment towards encouraging entrepreneurship and innovation," Mr. Modi said.
 
He noted that the topics picked for this year’s summit include healthcare and life sciences; digital economy and financial technology; energy and infrastructure; and media and entertainment, which are important issues, relevant to the well-being and prosperity of mankind. 
 
"The theme 'Women First, Prosperity for All' makes this edition of GES stand out... We believe women empowerment is vital to our development," he said.
 
"Indian women continue to lead in different walks of life. Our space programmes, including the Mars Orbiter Mission, have had immense contribution from our women scientists. Kalpana Chawla and Sunita Williams, both of Indian origin, have been part of US space missions. Three out of four oldest High Courts in India are now headed by women judges. Our sportswomen have done the country proud. This very city of Hyderabad is home to Saina Nehwal, PV Sindhu, and Sania Mirza, who have brought laurels to India.
 
"In India, we have provided for not less than one third of women representation in rural and urban local bodies, ensuring women’s participation in grass-root level decision-making. More than sixty percent of workers in our agriculture and allied sectors are women. Our milk co-operatives in Gujarat and the Shri Mahila Griha Udyog Lijjat Papad, are examples of highly successful and globally acclaimed women-led co-operative movements.
 
"Here at the GES, more than 50 percent of the delegates are women. Over the next two days, you will meet many women who have dared to be different, in their own walks of life. They now inspire a new generation of women entrepreneurs. I hope the deliberations in the summit would focus on how women entrepreneurship can be further supported," he said.
 
"The power to think differently and ahead of the times for the betterment of mankind is what sets entrepreneurs apart. I see that power in India's young generation today. I see 800 million potential entrepreneurs who can work towards making the world a better place," Mr. Modi said.
 
He said the number of smartphone users in India is projected to grow to over 500 million by 2018. This offers immense potential for the growth of any venture, in terms of outreach and job creation, he felt.
 
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He said the Government's Start-Up India programme is a comprehensive action plan to foster entrepreneurship and promote innovation. It aims to minimize the regulatory burden and provide support to startups. Over 1200 redundant laws have been scrapped, 87 rules for FDI have been eased in 21 sectors, and several government processes have been taken online, he said.
 
He said the Government had taken several steps to improve the business environment. "The jump in India’s ranking in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Report, from 142 to 100, in three years, is a result of this. We have improved on indicators like dealing with construction permits, getting credit, protecting minority investors, paying taxes, enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency," he said.
 
"The process is not yet complete. This is an area where we are not satisfied with 100th rank. We would strive towards 50th rank.  
 
"We have launched the MUDRA scheme to provide easy finance of upto one million rupees to entrepreneurs. Since its launch in 2015, over 90 million loans worth 4.28 trillion rupees have been sanctioned.  Of these, more than 70 million loans have been sanctioned to women entrepreneurs," he said.
 
The Prime Minister also mentioned the Atal Innovation Mission and the opening of Tinkering Labs in more than 900 schools to promote a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship among children. 
 
"Our Mentor India initiative engages leaders to guide and mentor students through these tinkering labs. In addition, 19 incubation centers have been created in various universities and research institutions. These will nurture innovative start-up businesses to become scalable and sustainable," he said.
 
He also mentioned Aadhaar, the world’s largest biometric based digital database. This currently covers over 1.15 billion people and digitally authenticates over 40 million transactions daily. He said the Government now digitally provides monetary benefits of various government schemes to the beneficiaries through Direct Benefit Transfer using Aadhaar.
 
"Almost 300 million bank accounts with deposits of over 685 billion rupees, or over 10 billion dollars, have been opened through the Jan Dhan Yojana. These bring previously un-banked sections of society into the formal financial system. Of these, 53 per cent accounts are of women.
 
"We are steadily working towards a less cash economy and have launched a Unified Payment Interface App called BHIM. In less than a year, this platform is processing almost 280 thousand transactions daily.
 
"Having almost completed our programme to connect all villages with electricity, we have launched the Saubhagya scheme. This will provide electricity connections to all families by December 2018.
 
"We have launched a programme to provide high-speed broad-band internet to all rural areas by March 2019," he said.
 
The Prime Minister also mentioned initiatives in areas such as renewable energy, the national gas grid, the national gas policy, the Swachh Bharat Mission to improve sanitation and cleanliness, the rural and urban housing missions, and infrastructure and connectivity programmes like Sagarmala and Bharatmala, and said they offered entrepreneurs many business opportunities for investment.
 
"Our recent World Food India initiative helped us engage with entrepreneurs in the food processing industry and agricultural waste sectors.
 
"My government understands that an environment of transparent policies and a rule of law providing a level-playing field are necessary for entrepreneurship to flourish. A historic overhaul of the taxation system has been recently undertaken, bringing in the Goods and Services Tax across the country. Our Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code introduced in 2016 is a step towards ensuring timely resolution for stressed ventures. We have recently improved this further, preventing wilful defaulters from bidding for stressed assets.
 
"Tough measures have been adopted to tackle the parallel economy, check tax evasion and control black money. Our efforts have been recognized by Moody’s recent upgrade of India’s government bond ratings. This upgrade comes after a gap of almost 14 years.
 
"India has improved its rank from 54 in 2014 to 35 in 2016 on the World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index. This signifies the relative ease and efficiency with which products can be moved into and from a country," he said.
 
Stating that an investment-friendly environment needs to be stable from the macro-economic perspective, he said the Government had succeeded in containing the fiscal and current account deficits, and curbing inflation. 
 
"Our foreign exchange reserves have crossed 400 billion dollars, and we continue to attract large foreign capital flows," he said.
 
"I am informed that President Trump has declared November 2017 as National Entrepreneurship Month. America has also observed National Entrepreneurs’ Day on November 21st. This summit will certainly resonate with those themes. Let me conclude by wishing you fruitful, engaging and rewarding deliberations at this summit," he added.
 
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Kiran Reddy quits as Andhra Pradesh CM day after LS passes Telangana Bill

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy announced his resignation on Wednesday in protest against the decision of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance Government at the Centre to go ahead with its decision to carve out Telangana from Andhra Pradesh as the 29th state of the Union.

Andhra Pradesh CM Kiran Reddy resigns, quits Congress
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy announced his resignation today in protest against the decision of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government at the Centre to go ahead with its decision to carve out Telangana from Andhra Pradesh as the 29th state of the Union.
 
Mr Reddy handed in his papers to Governor E S L Narasimhan a day after, amid noisy schenes, the Lok Sabha passed the Andhra Pradesh Reorganization Bill, which seeks to bifurcate the state to create the new state of Telangana.
 
Before driving down to Raj Bhavan to submit his resignation, Mr Reddy addressed a press conference at which he hit out at his Congress party for allegedly flouting Parliamentary procedures in its haste to get the Bill passed.
 
"I am ashamed. They did it like thieves, blacking out the live telecast. What was the need to do all this?" he asked.
 
Thanking the party for giving him the chance to serve as Chief Minister, he, however, made it clear that he could not continue in the Congress because, according to hi, it had betrayed the Telugu people.
 
He said he would also resign as a member of the Legislative Assembly as well as from the membership of the Congress.
 
Mr Reddy said the Congress and the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had got together in the Lok Sabha yesterday to get the Bill passed.
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He was particularly upset that the Bill was passed in the absence of several MPs from Andhra Pradesh, who had been suspended from the House for disrupting proceedings on February 13.
 
There has been media speculation about Mr Reddy planning to launch a new party but he did not touch the topic today. "My future is not important," he said when asked about it.
 
Some of his Cabinet colleagues from the Seemandhra region, who were opposed to the bifurcation of the state, and several legislators were present at the press conference.
 
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Hyderabad: Forceps found in abdomen of woman who underwent surgery three months ago

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Doctors at the Nizam's Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS) here have found a pair of artery forceps in the abdomen of a woman who had undergone a surgery for hernia at the hospital three months ago and kept complaining of severe pain in the weeks that followed.
 
Maheshwari Choudary, 33, of Mangalhat had undergone the surgery at NIMS on November 2 and was discharged ten days later after she had fully recovered.
 
To her initial complaints of severe abdominal pain, doctors told her that it was normal after surgery.
 
But when she again complained of acute pain and rushed to the hospital once more to the hospital last week, doctors conducted tests and took X-ray pictures, which showed the forceps left inside her abdomen during the surgery, hospital sources said.
 
Another team of doctors performed a second surgery yesterday to remove the forceps from her body, they said.
 
The hospital has also set up a committee of senior doctors to conduct an inquiry in the matter.
 
The Punjagutta Police here have also registered a case on the basis of a complaint of negligence filed by the patient's husband, Harshvardhan Choudary.
 
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First Chief Justice of Telangana High Court sworn in

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Justice Thottathil Bhaskaran Nair Radhakrishnan was on Tuesday sworn in as the first Chief Justice of Telangana High Court, officials said.
 
Telangana and Andhra Pradesh Governor E. S. L. Narasimhan administered oath to him at a ceremony held at Raj Bhavan.
 
Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao, judges, lawyers and senior officials attended the ceremony.
 
Justice Radhakrishnan had been serving as the Chief Justice of the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad for both the states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh since July last year.
 
Narasimhan later left for Vijayawada to administer oath to Justice Praveen Kumar as the acting Chief Justice of Andhra Pradesh High Court.
 
With this, the separate high courts for Telugu states will become functional from Tuesday.
 
The High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad had been serving as common high court of the two states since June 2014 when Andhra Pradesh was bifurcated to carve out Telangana.
 
Last week, the Central government issued a notification for bifurcation of the High Court between the two states. 
 
The gazette notification said January 1 would be the appointed day for the Andhra Pradesh High Court which will start functioning from Amaravati while the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad will become the High Court for Telangana.
 
The employees and lawyers of Andhra Pradesh at the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad on Monday reached Andhra Pradesh capital Amaravati.
 
The Supreme Court on Monday refused to take up for immediate hearing a petition filed by Andhra Pradesh Lawyers' Association for postponing the shifting of High Court to Amaravati till the construction of High Court building was completed there.
 
The Supreme Court will take up the petition for hearing on Wednesday. The petitioners say that completion of High Court building could take about 10 months.
 
IANS
 

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Andhra Pradesh, Telangana to have separate high courts from January 1, 2019

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Andhra Pradesh and Telangana will have separate High Courts from January 1, 2019 with an order in this regard signed here today by President Ram Nath Kovind.
 
The order, issued by the Department of Justice, Ministry of Law and Justice said the President had, under it, constituted a separate High Court for the State of Andhra Pradesh from January 1, 2019 with its principal seat in Amaravati.
 
The order was signed by President in exercise of powers conferred under clause (a) of sub-section (1) of section 30, sub-section (1) of section 31 and sub-section (2) of section 31 of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014.
 
It said the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad shall become the High Court forthe State of Telangana.
 
The order said that, with  the constitution of the High Court of Andhra Pradesh, the following Judges of the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad for the States of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh shall cease to be the Judges of the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad, and shall become the Judges of the High Court of Andhra Pradesh at Amaravati with effect from January  1:
 
(i) Justice RameshRanganathan (presently working as Chief Justice of High Court of Uttarakhand);  (ii) Justice Chagari PraveenKumar; (iii) Justice Sarasa Venkatanarayana Bhatti; (iv) Justice Akula Venkata Sesha Sai; (v) Justice Dama SeshadriNaidu (presently working on transfer as Judge, High Court of Kerala); (vi) Justice Mandhata Seetharama Murti; (vii) Justice UpmakaDurga Prasad Rao; (viii) Justice Talluri Sunil Chowdary; (ix) Justice Mallavolu Satyanarayana Murthy; (x) Justice Gudiseva Shyam Prasad; (xi) Justice Kumari Javalakar Uma Devi; (xii) Justice Nakka Balayogi;  (xiii) Justice Mrs. Telaprolu Rajani; (xiv) Justice Durvasula Venkata Subramanya Suryanarayana Somayajulu; (xv) Justice Mrs. Kongara Vijaya Lakshmi; and (xvi) Justice Manthoj Ganga Rao.
 
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The following Judges shall cease to be the Judges of the common High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad and shall become the Judges of the High Court for the State of Telangana with January 1:
 
(i) Justice Puligoru Venkata Sanjay Kumar; (ii) Justice Mamidanna Satya Ratna Sri Ramachandra Rao; (iii) Justice Adavalli Rajasheker Reddy; (iv) Justice Ponugoti Naveen Rao; (v) Justice Challa Kodandaram Chowdary; (vi) Justice Bulusu Siva Sankara Rao; (vii) Justice Dr. Shameem Akther;  (viii) Justice Potlapalli Keshava Rao;  (ix) Justice Abhinand Kumar Shavili; and (x) Justice Todupunuri Amarnath Goud.
 
The order said Mr. Justice R. Subhash Reddy, who was a Judge of the common High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad and who has been elevated as Judge of the Supreme Court of India, had exercised the option for allocation to High Court for the State of Telangana.
 
Telangana came into existence as the 29th state of India on June 2, 2014, marking the culmination of decades of struggle in the region for carving out a state from Andhra Pradesh.
 
Article 214 of the Constitution provides that there shall be a High Court for each State.
 
The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014 was enacted with a view to provide for the reorganisation of the existing State of Andhra Pradesh and for matters connected therewith.
 
Clause (a) of section 30 of the said Act provided that the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad shall be the common High Court for the State of Telangana and the State of Andhra Pradesh till a separate High Court for the State of Andhra Pradesh is constituted.
 
Sub-section (1) of section 31 of the Act provided that subject to the provisions of section 30, there shall be a separate High Court for the State of Andhra Pradesh and the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad shall become the High Court for the State of Telangana.
 
Sub-section (2) of section 31 of the Act provided that the principal seat of the High Court of Andhra Pradesh shall be at such place as the President may, by a notified Order, appoint.
 
The Supreme Court had earlier this year held that there is no embargo for the Competent Authority to issue a notification bifurcating the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad into the High Court of Telangana and the High Court of Andhra Pradesh.
 
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Pradhan inaugurates ONGC CSR project to promote organic farming

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Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Saturday inaugurated public sector Oil and Natural Gas Corporation's (ONGC) corporate social responsibility (CSR) project for construction of hostel, classrooms, computer labs and administrative block at the Centre for Agricultural Research and Training in Telangana.
 
The project is expected to benefit more than 3,500 farmers in organic farming, a press release from ONGC said.
 
The centre has been set up by ONGC in collaboration with Eklavya Foundation for training farmers in organic farming using latest technology.
 
“This area is known for toor daal produce, and I dedicate this initiative to my brothers and sisters who are engaged in farming and I hope they will be able to use the facilities created here and understand and adopt modern technology for improving production," Pradhan said on the occasion.
 
The Minister, who is also in charge of Skill Development, championed the cause of skill development of the farmers to promote organic farming in a big way across the country, and said such projects would improve the standard of living of farmers. 
 
He also said that organic farm produce is another area for promoting export of these products with suitable quality controls and market linkages, helping India become a net exporter in organic produce. He said the concept of ‘Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan’ is very close to the heart of this government and will strive to take the project to the entire nation.
 
The release said the CSR project, envisioned by the government, has been supported by ONGC to help India develop a sizeable organic farming market. 
 
ONGC Chairman and Managing Director Shashi Shanker said the company was proud to be associated with this kind of project through its CSR proramme to empower people towards inclusive development. “Technology induction in agriculture to foster organic farming will be a game changer. This project will usher in a new beginning in our agri-economy,” he added.
 
Dr. Alka Mittal, Director HR, ONGC, said that, through proper skill development and use of technology, the farmers will be able to migrate to organic farming which will have three-fold benefits -- the farmers will prosper and the quality of life of their families will improve, their consumers will get healthy agro-products and there will be environment conservation as well leading to improved ecosystem in which the entire state of Telangana will flourish.
 
The facility will also reach out to farmers in ONGC operational areas in Andhra Pradesh, training them in organic farming and enrolling them in PGS System, an internationally applicable organic quality assurance system, similar to ISO. The PGS System would certify their farm produce as organic produce and recognize them as export quality internationally.
 
"The project will be immensely beneficial for increasing the scope of organic farming in the entire Telangana and other neighbouring region. This project will help the farmers and local youth to enhance their livelihood by imparting them employment with enhancing vocation skills. The project is being implemented in one of the most backward areas in the region. It will benefit about 3500 farmers, 200 students and consumers in general by way of promoting organic farming," the release added.
 
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SpiceJet introduces new flight connecting Delhi to Prayagraj

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Low-cost carrier SpiceJet has announced special daily flights to be operated during the Maha Kumbh Mela between Prayagraj (Allahabad) in Uttar Pradesh and Delhi.
 
The airline has also announced a host of other new non-stop flights and frequencies connecting Hyderabad to Ahmedabad, Bagdogra and Goa. 
 
The flights on the Delhi-Prayagraj (Allahabad) sector are scheduled to operate from January 6, 2019 to March 30, 2019 while the other flights will start from January 10, 2019.
 
Of the eight new direct flights, the ones between Delhi and Prayagraj and Hyderabad and Goa will operate on all day, while they will be operational on all days of the week except Sundays on other routes.
 
The airline will deploy its Boeing 737 – 700 aircraft on the Delhi- Prayagraj-Delhi route while all the other sectors will be served by Boeing 737 – 800 aircraft, a press release from the airline said.
 
Shilpa Bhatia, Chief Sales & Revenue Officer - SpiceJet, said, “We are delighted to introduce a new flight on the Delhi-Prayagraj route. The city stands testimonial to India’s glorious history and rich cultural heritage besides being a key pilgrim destination. And we are sure that this flight and the other flights introduced from Hyderabad and Ahmedabad will offer added options and convenience to our customers.”
 
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KCR appoints son as TRS Working President

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Telangana Chief Minister and Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) President K. Chandrashekhar Rao on Friday appointed his son K. T. Rama Rao as the Working President of the party.
 
KCR, who decided to focus on national politics, entrusted the key responsibility to his son, popularly known as KTR and seen as number two in the party and the government.
 
The Chief Minister has entrusted the responsibility of taking forward the party in accordance with his plan, to KTR, the most trusted person in the party, according to a statement from the Chief Minister's Office.
 
KCR took this decision with a view to entrust the responsibility of party affairs to a most trusted and efficient person, since he would be preoccupied with the governance activities like expediting construction of irrigation projects and also to implement the electoral promises in letter and spirit, it said.
 
"CM KCR strongly believes and is confident that the working style, the commitment, the direction and leadership qualities of KTR will help in leading the TRS party efficiently and effectively by him in the days to come."
 
The TRS chief took the decision a day after taking over as the Chief Minister for a second consecutive term, following his party's landslide victory in Assembly elections.
 
KTR, only son of KCR, has been re-elected to the Assembly from Sircilla constituency.
 
KTR was Minister for Industry and Information Technology in the previous cabinet. He was likely to be inducted in the new cabinet next week.
 
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K Chandrashekhar Rao takes oath as Telangana CM for second consecutive term

Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief K Chandrasekhar Rao during his swearing in ceremony as Chief Minister of Telangana at Raj Bhavan in Hyderabad on December13, 2018. (Photo: IANS)
Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief K Chandrasekhar Rao during his swearing in ceremony as Chief Minister of Telangana at Raj Bhavan in Hyderabad on December13, 2018. (Photo: IANS)
K. Chandrashekhar Rao, who led the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) to a landslide victory in the December 7 Assembly elections, on Thursday took oath as the Chief Minister of Telangana for a second term in a row.
 
Governor E. S. L. Narasimhan administered the oath of office and secrecy to the TRS leader at 1.25 a.m. at a ceremony held at Raj Bhavan.
 
Mohammed Mahmood Ali, a member of Telangana Legislative Council, also took oath as a Minister. Ali, who was Deputy Chief Minister in the previous cabinet, is likely to retain the same post.
 
KCR, as Rao is popularly known, took oath in Telugu while Ali completed the formalities in Urdu.
 
TRS leaders in the audience raised slogans of "Long live KCR" and "Jai Telangana" as the 64-year-old finished taking the oath.
 
KCR is likely to expand his cabinet next week. The TRS retained power by winning 88 seats in the 119-member Assembly.
 
KCR's wife Shobha Rao, son K. T. Rama Rao, daughter K. Kavitha, nephew T. Harish Rao and other family members attended the ceremony.
 
After the swearing-in, a group of priests blessed KCR and presented him 'prasadam'.
 
KCR had taken oath as Telangana's first Chief Minister on June 2, 2014, the day when Telangana came into being as India's 29th state.
 
He went for a dissolution of the Assembly on September 6 this year, eight months before its term was to end. His gamble for early polls paid rich dividends.
 
Newly elected legislators of TRS, top party leaders, All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) President Asaduddin Owaisi, Chief Secretary S. K. Joshi, Director General of Police Mahender Reddy and senior officials attended the ceremony.
 
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KCR takes oath as Telangana CM for second consecutive term

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K. Chandrashekhar Rao on Thursday took oath as the Chief Minister of Telangana for a second term in a row.
 
Governor E. S. L. Narasimhan administered the oath of office and secrecy to the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) leader at a ceremony held at Raj Bhavan.
 
Mohammed Mahmood Ali, a member of Telangana Legislative Council, also took oath as a Minister.
 
Ali, who was Deputy Chief Minister in the previous cabinet, is likely to retain the same post.
 
KCR, as he is popularly known, is likely to expand his cabinet next week. The TRS retained power by winning 88 seats in the 119-member Assembly in the recent elections.
 
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KCR to take oath as Telangana CM on Thursday

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K. Chandrashekhar Rao, who led the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) to a massive win in the Telangana Assembly elections, will take oath as the Chief Minister of India's youngest state for a second consecutive term on Thursday.
 
He will take oath at a ceremony to be held at 1.30 p.m. at Raj Bhavan. Governor E. S. L. Narasimhan will administer him the oath of office and secrecy.
 
The newly elected legislators of TRS on Wednesday elected KCR their leader at a meeting held at the Telangana Bhavan, the TRS headquarters.
 
The TRS chief told reporters after the meeting that since the Election Commission has to issue a Gazette notification, the constitution of a full-fledged cabinet may take few days.
 
He said he would take the oath along with a colleague on Thursday.
 
KCR also sent his resignation to the Governor to facilitate formation of the new government and his swearing-in.
 
The TRS chief said he would try to give representation to all sections in the cabinet.
 
The state can have maximum 18 members in the cabinet due to the Constitutional restruction. He, however, felt that the cabinet size was proving insufficient and there was a need to increase the numbers.
 
A delegation of TRS leaders met the Governor and presented a resolution passed at the TRS Legislature Party meeting, unanimously electing KCR as its leader.
 
Earlier, Telangana Chief Electoral Officer Rajat Kumar and Election Commission's Principal Secretary S. K. Rudola met the Governor and submitted the list of newly elected legislators.
 
TRS has bagged 88 seats in the 119-member Assembly in the elections held on December 7.
 
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TRS juggernaut crushes Congress, gets absolute majority

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K. Chandrashekhar Rao led his Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) to a resounding victory, crushing Congress-led alliance in India's youngest state, riding high on Telangana pride and welfare schemes.
 
Beating all expectations of pre-poll surveys and exit polls, the TRS bagged 88 seats in the 119-member Assembly to retain the power with more than two-thirds majority.
 
The gamble for early polls appeared to have paid rich dividends for the regional party, which received the massive mandate in the first general election in the four-year-old state.
 
The Congress-led People's Front, which was expected to give a tough fight to the TRS, managed only 21 seats.
 
TRS chief and Chief Minister Chandrashekhar Rao, who was re-elected from Gajwel constituency, termed the massive win as "people's victory". He said this was a positive vote for the work done by TRS for the welfare and development.
 
"This victory has added responsibility on us to fulfil the aspirations of people," he said and claimed that with all sections of people backing the TRS, the result had shown the way to the nation for a non-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and non-Congress alternative.
 
KCR's son K. T. Rama Rao and nephew Harish Rao also retained Sircilla and Siddipet constituencies. However, four of KCR's other cabinet colleagues were defeated as also Assembly Speaker S. Madhusudana Chary.
 
The TRS had bagged 63 seats in 2014 but increased its tally to 90 with over two dozen MLAs from other parties crossing over to the ruling party. It had fielded all sitting legislators and most of them retained their seats.
 
The party recorded massive victory in all regions. Barring Khammam district, it made almost a clean sweep in north Telangana and dominated south Telangana. It also made huge inroads in Greater Hyderabad, where the TDP-BJP alliance had won majority of seats in the previous election.
 
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People rejected the alliance between the Congress and the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) as the four-party People's Front faced a severe drubbing.
 
The Congress won just 19 seats, two less than its tally in 2014. Many top leaders of Congress party including those seen as chief ministerial candidates were defeated. They include floor leader in the dissolved Assembly K. Jana Reddy, party's state working presidents Revanth Reddy and Ponnam Prabhakar and former Central minister Sarve Satyanarayana.
 
The TDP, which had won 15 seats in 2014 elections, bagged only two seats. Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS) and Communist Party of India (CPI), two other constituents of People's Front, drew a blank.
 
BJP, which had five seats in the dissolved Assembly, could retain only one seat.
 
Continuing its domination in Hyderabad, the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) retained all seven seats it held in the dissolved House.
 
As many as 73.20 per cent of 2.80 crore electorate voted in the elections held in all 119 constituencies on Friday.
 
The Governor had dissolved the Assembly in September on the Chief Minister's advice, eight months before its term was to end.
 
Initially focussing on welfare and development schemes, KCR made Telangana pride a key issue when the TDP joined hands with the Congress.
 
Portraying TDP President and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu as an enemy of Telangana's interests, the TRS chief had urged people not to allow outsiders to decide their future.
 
IANS
 

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TRS retains Telangana, crushes Congress

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Riding high on Telangana pride and welfare schemes, Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao led his Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) to a thumping victory, crushing the Congress-led alliance in India's youngest state.
 
Beating all expectations of pre-poll surveys and exit polls, the TRS appeared set to win a whopping 77 seats in the 119-member Assembly, triggering wild celebrations by party leaders as well as activists all over the state.
 
The gamble for early polls appeared to have paid rich dividends for the regional party as it bagged 77 seats and was leading in 10 constituencies.
 
The Congress-led People's Front, which was expected to give a tough fight to TRS, won only 17 seats and was leading in five places.
 
TRS chief and Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao was re-elected from Gajwel constituency. His son K. T. Rama Rao and nephew Harish Rao also retained Sircilla and Siddipet seats. 
 
A jubilant Chief Minister told the media that he would work to evolve an alternative to both the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress with a new economic model. 
 
"Grateful, indebted and humbled. Thanks Telangana for keeping the faith in KCR Garu and giving us another opportunity to serve you," tweeted Rama Rao, his son and a Minister.
 
KCR's daughter and TRS MP K. Kavitha said there was no anti-incumbency as the TRS government had done well on all fronts during the last four-and-a-half years.
 
"KCR's hard work has paid off," said Kavitha, adding that it was both welfare programmes and Telangana pride which worked for the party in this election.
 
TRS bagged 63 seats in 2014 but increased its tally to 90 with over two dozens MLAs from other parties crossing over to the ruling party. It fielded all sitting legislators and most of them retained their seats.
 
TRS recorded massive victory in all the regions. Barring Khammam district, it made almost a clean sweep in north Telangana and dominated south Telangana. It also made huge inroads in Greater Hyderabad, where the TDP-BJP alliance had won most seats in the previous election.
 
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Since the dissolution of the Assembly, KCR had been confident of winning over 100 seats. While many had dismissed this as over-confidence, his prophecy came true with the TRS almost hitting the target with its ally AIMIM.
 
TDP, which won 15 seats in 2014, was ahead in just two segments. The BJP, which had 5 seats in the dissolved Assembly, won only one seat.
 
Many top leaders of the Congress including those Chief Minister candidates were defeated. They include floor leader in the dissolved Assembly K. Jana Reddy, state working presidents Revanth Reddy and Ponnam Prabhakar and former central Minister Sarve Satyanarayana.
 
The Congress, which bagged 21 seats in 2014, may finish with a tally of 20. The Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS) and Communist Party of India (CPI), two other constituents of People's Front, drew a blank.
 
The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) won four seats and was leading in three. Thus it appeared set to retain all seven seats. 
 
As many as 73.20 per cent of 2.80 crore electorate voted in the elections held in all 119 constituencies on Friday.
 
KCR dissolved the Assembly in September, eight months before its term was to end.
 
Initially focussing on welfare and development schemes, KCR made Telangana pride a key issue when the TDP joined hands with the Congress.
 
Portraying TDP President and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu as an enemy of Telangana's interests, the TRS chief had urged people not to allow outsiders to decide their future.
 
IANS
 

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Riding on Telangana pride, TRS heading for landslide victory

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Riding on Telangana pride and its welfare schemes, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi on Tuesday appeared heading towards a landslide victory in Assembly elections.
 
Beating all expectations of pre-poll surveys and exit polls, the TRS appeared set to win 90 seats in the 119-member Assembly.
 
The gamble for early polls appeared to have paid rich dividends for the regional party in the first full-fledged elections in India's youngest state.
 
The TRS took early leads in a majority of the constituencies for which trends were available as officials counted the hundreds of thousands of votes.
 
The ruling party candidates were ahead of their rivals in 90 constituencies while the other major contender for power, the Congress-led People's Front, was leading in just 18 places.
 
TRS chief and Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao was leading in Gajwel constituency while his son K. T. Rama Rao and nephew Harish Rao were ahead of their rivals in Sircilla and Siddipet constituencies.
 
People seem to have dismissed the alliance between the Congress and the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) as the four-party People's Front was heading for a drubbing.
 
Many top leaders of Congress were trailing. The TDP was ahead in just two segments while Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS) and Communist Party of India (CPI) were not leading in any of the constituencies they contested.
 
The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) was leading in five segments and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in three.
 
KCR's daughter K. Kavitha said there was never doubt that the party would retain power with a huge majority.
 
Kavitha, a member of the Lok Sabha, said there was no anti-incumbency as the TRS government had done well on all fronts during the last four-and-a-half years.
 
As many as 73.20 per cent of 2.80 crore electorate voted in the elections held in all 119 constituencies on Friday.
 
The TRS won 63 seats in 2014 while Congress had finished with 21.
 
KCR dissolved the Assembly in September, eight months before its term was to end.
 
Initially focussing on welfare and development schemes, KCR made Telangana pride a key issue when the TDP joined hands with the Congress. 
 
Portraying TDP President and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu as an enemy of Telangana's interests, the TRS chief had urged people not to allow outsiders to decide their future. 
 
IANS
 

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TRS appears set for two-third majority in Telangana

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The gamble for early polls appears to have paid rich dividends as the Telangana Rashtra Samithi on Tuesday appeared to be advancing towards a two-third majority in the 119-member Assembly.
 
The TRS took early leads in a majority of the constituencies for which trends were available as officials counted the hundreds of thousands of votes.
 
The ruling party candidates were ahead of their rivals in 82 constituencies while the other major contender for power, the Congress-led People's Front, was leading in just 17 places.
 
People seem to have dismissed the alliance between the Congress and the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) as the four-party People's Front was heading for a drubbing.
 
Many top leaders of Congress were trailing in their constituencies while TDP, Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS) and Communist Party of India (CPI) were not leading in any of the constituencies they contested.
 
The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) was leading in three segments and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in four.
 
TRS President and Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao's daughter K. Kavitha said there was no doubt that the party would retain power with a huge majority.
 
Kavitha, a member of the Lok Sabha, said there was no anti-incumbency as the TRS government had done well on all fronts during the last four-and-a-half years.
 
As many as 73.20 per cent of 2.80 crore electorate voted in the elections held in all 119 constituencies on Friday.
 
The TRS won 63 seats in 2014 while Congress had finished with 21.
 
KCR dissolved the Assembly in September, eight months before its term was to end.
 
IANS
 

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TRS appears to be on winning track in Telangana

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The Telangana Rashtra Samithi appeared to be on the winning track in Telangana as it has taken early leads in a majority of the constituencies for which counting trends were available.
 
The TRS candidates were ahead of their rivals in 48 constituencies while the other major contender for power, the Congress-led People's Front, was ahead in 21 constituencies.
 
All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) was leading in three segments while Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was ahead in one constituency.
 
TRS President and Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao's daughter K. Kavitha said there was no doubt that the party would retain power with huge majority.
 
Kavitha, who is a member of the Lok Sabha, said there was no anti-incumbency as TRS government had done well on all fronts during last four-and-half years.
 
As many as 73.20 per cent of 2.80 crore voters had cast their votes in the elections held in all 119 constituencies last Friday.
 
The TRS had won 63 seats in 2014 while Congress had finished with 21.
 
IANS
 

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72.62% voting in Rajasthan, 67% in Telangana as Assembly polls end

More than 72.62% of the electorate in Rajasthan and 67% in Telangana turned out to exercise their franchise amidst tight security today, bringing the curtains down on crucial Assembly polls in five states just months ahead of the all-important 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

Voters queue up outside a polling booth in Warangal district of Telangana in the State Assembly elections on December 7, 2018.
Voters queue up outside a polling booth in Warangal district of Telangana in the State Assembly elections on December 7, 2018.
More than 72.62 percent of the electorate in Rajasthan and 67 percent in Telangana turned out to exercise their franchise amidst tight security today, bringing the curtains down on crucial Assembly polls in five states just months ahead of the all-important 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
 
The final voting figures in both states are likely to be slightly higher as Election Commission officials collate numbers from polling booths in remote areas.
 
Polling was held on November 28 in Madhya Pradesh and Mizoram and in two phases on November 12 and 20 in Chhattisgarh.
 
Counting of votes in all five states will be taken up on December 11 and all results are expected to be available by that evening.
 
In Rajasthan, where voting began at 8 am and will continue till 5 pm, the Congress is making a strong bid to unseat the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government headed by Vasundhara Raje that has been in power since December 2013.
 
About 4.74 crore voters were eligible to exercise their franchise to decide the fate of 2,274 candidates in the fray for the 200-member Assembly. 
 
Out of 2,274 candidates, 189 women were in the fray in 199 out of the 200 assembly constituencies. The BJP contested all seats, while the Congress had left five seats for its allies. 
 
The Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) fielded 190 candidatesm the Communist Party of India-Marxist 28 and the Communist Party of India 16.  There were 830 independent candidates. 
 
The election in Alwar district's Ramgarh constituency was postponed due to the death of BSP candidate Laxman Singh. 
 
In Telangana, polling began at 7 am and ended at 5 pm in 106 constituencies. In 13 Left-wing extremism (LWE)-affected constituencies, polling ended an hour earlier at 4 pm.
 
There were long queues of voters outside many polling booths at the close of polling hours, and all of them were allowed to vote as per the procedure.
 
Around 2.8 crore electors were eligible to decide the fate of 1,821 candidates in Telangana in the first election after the state was formed. In the 2014 elections held in united Andhra Pradesh, Telangana had registered a voter turnout of 68.9 percent.
 
The ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), led by Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao, which is seeking a second consecutive term in power, is up against a resurgent Congress-led People's Front.
 
The ruling Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) decided to go in for early polls and, accordingly, the Governor of the State had dissolved the Assembly with immediate effect on September 6, 2018, nearly nine months before its term was to end. The TRS move was aimed at catching the Opposition parties unawares but the Congress threw a surprise by coming up with an alliance in a bid to oust the ruling party. 
 
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The Congress had tied up with TDP, CPI and Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS), a new party floated by M. Kodandaram, who was once Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao's friend in the Telangana movement.
 
Telangana had 51,796 polling stations, an increase of 14.25 per cent over the previous election in 2013. 
 
The term of the current Assembly in Chhattisgarh is due to expire on January 5, 2019; Madhya Pradesh on January 7, 2019; Rajasthan on January 20, 2019 and Mizoram on December 15, 2018.
 
IANS adds:
The polling in Telangana, which began on a dull note at 7 a.m., picked up after 9. Long queues of voters including women were seen especially in rural areas.
 
Chief Electoral Officer Rajath Kumar said barring sporadic incidents, the polling was peaceful and smooth in all 32,815 polling stations across 31 districts.
 
In some polling centres, the process started late due to technical glitches in Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs).
 
Of the total electorate, nearly half are women. There were 1,821 candidates, including Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao and his 14 cabinet colleagues.
 
Congress candidate Vamshichand Reddy was injured in stone pelting by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers in Nagarkurnool district. He was admitted to a hospital.
 
Tension prevailed in Kodangal constituency where the midnight arrest of Congress Working Ptesident Revanth Reddy on December 4 had triggered a huge row, leading to transfer of Vikarabad District Superintendent of Police by the Election Commission.
 
Voters at several places complained that their names were missing from the voters' list. Some voters staged protests after officials did not allow them to exercise their franchise in the absence of voter slips.
 
Prominent people whose names were missing from the voter's list include family members of Finance Minister E. Rajender. Badminton player Jwala Gutta tweeted that her name was missing from the list.
 
Many celebrities including superstar Chiranjeevi, Nagarjuna, Junior NTR, tennis star Sania Mirza and ace shuttler P. V. Sindhu voted but this failed to enthuse the voters as overall turnout remained less than 40 per cent by 3 p.m.
 
Chief Minister and Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) President cast his vote in his village in Siddipet district and exuded confidence that his party will retain power with a huge majority.
 
Over 50,000 security personnel, including 18,860 from neighbouring states and central forces, were deployed as part of the security arrangements.
 
Over 1.50 lakh polling personnel were on duty to conduct the polling process. As many as 55,329 EVMs and 39,763 control units were in use.
 
For the first time, Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) were installed across the state.
 
The BJP was the third key force in some constituencies. The Bahujan Left Front led by the Communist Party of India-Marxist and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) also contested majority of the seats.
 
The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) contested eight seats in Hyderabad.
 
In Rajasthan, too, the elections were largely peaceful barring a few sporadic incidents of violence.
 
The voting was quite low at the start, but it picked up pace gradually. In all, 41.33 per cent votes were cast till 1 p.m, which touched around 60 per cent by 3 p.m and went up to 72.65 per cent by 5 p.m.
 
The Congress, meanwhile, has complained to the Election Commission (EC) about malfunctioning of around 400 VVPAT machines. The party workers also complained of slow voting and requested the Commission to extend the voting time.
 
A total of 1.44 lakh constables, head constables and 1,500 police officials were deputed for election duties, while a total of 640 companies were monitoring at different polling centres. Strict vigilance was maintained at 11,000 booths with the help of web casting, videography and micro-observers.
 
Early in the morning, Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje voted at a polling booth in her Jhalrapatan constituency in Jhalawar district, while Union Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore and Congress leader Sachin Pilot voted at a polling booth in Jaipur.
 
"I think people have seen the kind of work that has taken place in Rajasthan and I think they will go out and vote for development," Raje said after casting her ballot.
 
The Congress' key candidate, Pilot, who is fighting an Assembly election for the first time, said: "There are people who never visited the state and have come only for campaigning. The state has suffered a lot under Raje."
 
In wake of technical faults reports in many polling stations, Jalore District Collector B. L. Kothari said: "Around four EVMs had technical glitch in Ahore constituency. However, within a few minutes, these machines were replaced and smooth polling started in there. This was in early morning owing to poor connections but they were rectified immediately as we had extra machines at the centre."
 
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Polling begins in Rajasthan, Telengana to elect new Assemblies

Polling began on Friday morning amidst tight security in Rajasthan and Telangana to elect new legislative assemblies -- the last two of five states that have gone to the polls just months ahead of the all-important 2010 Lok Sabha elections.

Voters queue up outside a polling booth in Warangal district of Telangana in the State Assembly elections on December 7, 2018.
Voters queue up outside a polling booth in Warangal district of Telangana in the State Assembly elections on December 7, 2018.
Polling began this morning amidst tight security in Rajasthan and Telangana to elect new legislative assemblies -- the last two of five states that have gone to the polls just months ahead of the all-important 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
 
Voting was held on November 28 in Madhya Pradesh and Mizoram and in two phases on November 12 and 20 in Chhattisgarh.
 
Counting of votes in all five states will be taken up on December 11 and all results are expected to be available by that evening.
 
In Rajasthan, where voting began at 8 am and will continue till 5 pm, the Congress is making a strong bid to unseat the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government headed by Vasundhara Raje that has been in power since December 2013.
 
About 4.74 crore voters are eligible to exercise their franchise to decide the fate of 2,274 candidates in the fray for the 200-member Assembly. 
 
Out of 2,274 candidates -- 189 women are contesting for 199 out of the 200 assembly constituencies. 
 
The BJP is contesting on all seats while the Congress has left five seats for its allies. 
 
The Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has fielded 190, the Communist Party of India-Marxist 28 and the Communist Party of India 16 candidates. There are 830 Independent candidates. 
 
The election in Alwar district's Ramgarh constituency has been postponed due to the death of BSP candidate Laxman Singh. 
 
In Telangana, polling began at 7 am and will end at 5 pm in 106 constituencies. In 13 Left-wing extremism (LWE)-affected constituencies, polling will end an hour earlier at 4 pm.
 
Around 2.8 crore electors will decide the fate of 1,821 candidates in the first election after Telangana was formed.
 
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The ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), led by Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao, which is seeking a second consecutive term in power, is up against a resurgent Congress-led People's Front.
 
The ruling Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) decided to go in for early polls and, accordingly, the Governor of the State had dissolved the Assembly with immediate effect on September 6, 2018, nearly nine months before its term was to end. The TRS move was aimed at catching the Opposition parties unawares but the Congress threw a surprise by coming up with an alliance in a bid to oust the ruling party. 
 
The Congress has tied up with TDP, CPI and Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS), a new party floated by M. Kodandaram, who was once Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao's friend in the Telangana movement.
 
Telangana has 51,796 polling stations, an increase of 14.25 per cent over the previous election in 2013. 
 
The term of the current Assembly in Chhattisgarh is due to expire on January 5, 2019; Madhya Pradesh on January 7, 2019; Rajasthan on January 20, 2019 and Mizoram on December 15, 2018.
 
(With inputs from IANS)
 
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Rajasthan, Telangana will vote to elect new Assemblies on Friday

Rajasthan and Telangana will go to the polls on Friday in a high-stakes battle to elect new legislative assemblies, the results of which along with those in three other states can be a pointer to which way the wind is blowing ahead of next year's general elections.

Polling officials wait in queues to collect Electronic Voting Machines from a distribution centre before leaving for their polling stations, on the eve of Rajasthan Assembly elections, in Jaipur on December 6, 2018. (Photo: Ravi Shankar Vyas/IANS)
Polling officials wait in queues to collect Electronic Voting Machines from a distribution centre before leaving for their polling stations, on the eve of Rajasthan Assembly elections, in Jaipur on December 6, 2018. (Photo: Ravi Shankar Vyas/IANS)
Rajasthan and Telangana will go to the polls on Friday in a high-stakes battle to elect new legislative assemblies, the results of which along with those in three other states can be a pointer to which way the wind is blowing ahead of next year's general elections.
 
The BJP and the Congress are locked in a tough fight in Rajasthan, which has not voted the same party to power for more than one term in the last 20 years, while in Telangana the ruling TRS is facing a resurgent Congress-led People's Front in its bid for a second term.
 
The contest is largely bipolar between the BJP and Congress for the 200-member Rajasthan Assembly but is expected to be triangular, especially in some seats, for the 119-member Telangana assembly where the Congress has tied up with unlikely ally TDP, CPI and Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS), a new party floated by M. Kodandaram, who was once Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao's friend in the Telangana movement.
 
The campaign in both the states has been bitter with personalized attacks by leaders of various parties. 
 
In Rajasthan, the BJP is fighting anti-incumbency to retain power. 
 
While over 4.74 crore people are eligible to vote in Rajasthan, there are over 2.80 crore voters in Telangana. 
 
The voting will start at 7 a.m. in Telangana and at 8 a.m. in Rajasthan and VVPATs (voter verifiable paper audit trail) will be used in all the constituencies. Voters will also have NOTA (none of the above) option. 
 
Tight security has been made in both the states and the results will be declared on December 11 along with those of Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Mizoram.
 
Telangana has 51,796 polling stations, an increase of 14.25 per cent over the previous election in 2013. 
 
In Telangana, the political fortunes of 1,821 candidates will be decided in 119 constituencies in the first election after Telangana was formed.
 
Election authorities have made elaborate arrangements for a smooth conduct of the polling process in 32,815 polling stations.
 
According to Telangana's Chief Electoral Officer Rajat Kumar, polling will be held from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. in 106 constituencies while in 13 Left Wing Extremism affected constituencies polling will conclude at 4 p.m.
 
As the Communist Party of India-Maoist has given a call for boycott of elections, the police heightened vigil in areas bordering Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra.
 
The TRS government dissolved the dssembly about eight months ahead of schedule in the hope of taking the opposition parties by surprise but the Congress threw a surprise by coming up with an alliance in a bid to oust the ruling party. 
 
IANS
 

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EC shunts out Telangana SP over Congress leader's arrest

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The Election Commission on Wednesday ordered the transfer of the Vikarabad Superintendent of Police T. Annapurna, a day after the state Congress Working President Revanth Reddy was arrested by the police.
 
The poll panel has posted Avinash Mohanthy as the new district Superintendent of Police.
 
The Election Commission directed the Telangana Director General of Police not to use the services of Annapurna for election purposes.
 
The action comes a day after Revanth Reddy, also a Congress candidate from Kodangal constituency, was arrested in a raid on his house past midnight.
 
Police said he was taken into preventive custody as he had threatened to disrupt the election rally of Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao at Kosgi in Kodangal constituency.
 
Revanth was released after the rally of the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief.
 
The Hyderabad High Court had faulted the Telangana Police for the manner in which Revanth was arrested and wondered if the state had become a banana republic. 
 
The court on Tuesday had summoned the Advocate General to produce the evidence based on which the police acted against Revanth.
 
The High Court heard the habeas corpus petition filed by a Congress leader for a second consecutive day on Wednesday. A division bench of Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan and Justice M. Satyanarayana Murthy summoned Director General of Police (DGP) Mahender Reddy and asked him to show the grounds on which the police arrested Revanth. 
 
The DGP was also asked at which level the decision to arrest the Congress candidate was taken.
 
A lawyer of the petitioner told reporters that the court was not satisfied with the explanation and records provided by the DGP. It raised doubts on the veracity of a document from the intelligence department.
 
The court directed the DGP to file an affidavit and adjourned the hearing to December 17.
 
Telangana is going to the polls on December 7.
 
IANS
 

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HC faults police over Telangana Congress leader's arrest

Telangana Congress leader Revanth Reddy
Telangana Congress leader Revanth Reddy
The Hyderabad High Court on Tuesday voiced its unhappiness over the manner in which Telangana Police arrested state Congress working President Revanth Reddy from his house in the dead of night.
 
The court asked the state government what was the need for taking the Congress leader into custody. It heard thrice the habeas corpus petition filed by Congress leader V. Narender Reddy and in the evening summoned Advocate General to record his statement.
 
Advocate General B.S. Prasad sought time till Wednesday to submit evidence to justify Revanth's arrest. 
 
Earlier, the police submitted to the court that they took him into custody as his call for a shutdown in Kodangal to protest Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao's visit could have created law and order problems.
 
The court observed that there was nothing wrong in Revanth calling for a shutdown and asked police to provide evidence to justify its action.
 
Revanth was arrested from his residence at 3 a.m ahead of KCR's election rally at Kosgi in Kodangal constituency, which was represented by the Congress leader in the dissolved Assembly.
 
After KCR's rally in the evening, police released Revanth Reddy. The Congress leader alleged that the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) had hatched a plan to create disturbances in Kodangal in the next 48 hours. He claimed that KCR was using police to suppress the opposition and using money to influence the voters.
 
Revanth had called for a shutdown in Kodangal to protest against police raids at his house last week.
 
The Election Commission had also issued a notice to Reddy over his threat. A police officer said a case was booked against Revanth Reddy on a complaint by the Electoral Officer.
 
The Congress party strongly condemned the arrest of its leader and lodged a complaint with the Election Commission. It said with just a day for the campaigning to come to an end, their leader was denied an opportunity to campaign.
 
Congress president Rahul Gandhi tweeted that Revanth's arrest is a proof of KCR's autocratic rule. In the comments in Telugu on his Twitter handle, the Congress leader said the arrest cannot stop the Congress' march. He further wrote that the time has come for the end of anti-people rule of TRS.
 
Senior Congress leader S. Jaipal Reddy condemned the manner in which police arrested Revanth. He said the fear of election defeat has gripped KCR.
 
State's Chief Electoral Officer Rajat Kumar, however, denied the allegations that they are biased. He said they treat all political parties equally.
 
Elections to the 119-member Telangana Assembly are scheduled for December 7.
 
IANS
 
 

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Telangana Congress leader Revanth Reddy detained ahead of KCR's election rally

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Police in Telangana on Tuesday detained state Congress Working President Revanth Reddy ahead of Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao's election rally in Vikarabad district.
 
He was picked up from his residence earlier in the day to prevent any untoward incident during Rao's rally in Kosgi, Kodangal, and was shifted to an undisclosed location.
 
Reddy, who quit the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) to join the Congress earlier this year, represented Kodangal in the dissolved Assembly. 
 
His detention came in view of Reddy's threat to disrupt the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief's rally. He had called for a shutdown to protest it.
 
The Election Commission had also issued a notice to Reddy for his threat. 
 
The police has booked two cases against the Congress leader.
 
Tension prevailed in Kodangal following Reddy's detention. The police have already imposed prohibitory orders in the town to prevent any untoward incident. 
 
Elections to the 119-member Telangana Assembly are scheduled for December 7.
 
IANS
 

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KCR scared of Modi because of corruption: Rahul

 
Telangana elections: Rahul accuses KCR of corruption
Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Monday alleged that Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao was scared of Prime Minister Narendra Modi because of his corruption.
 
Addressing a series of election rallies in Telangana, he also claimed that Modi was running the Telangana government through remote control.
 
"As Modi has CBI and Enforcement Directorate at his disposal, KCR is afraid of him," Gandhi told a road show in Hyderabad while campaigning with Telugu Desam Party (TDP) President and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu.
 
Alleging that the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief KCR received kickbacks in irrigation projects, the Congress leader said it was because of this corruption that he was not able to stand up to Modi and supported the BJP on every bill and in the election of President and Vice- President.
 
Gandhi said KCR owed an explanation to the people of Telangana as to why he backed Modi on demonetization and GST when both the measures caused misery to the people.
 
"Wherever Modi speaks, he criticizes me, ridicules me and my family but he speaks nothing against KCR. This shows they are hand in glove," he said.
 
Gandhi, who also addressed rallies in Tandur and Gadwal earlier, said the Congress-led People's Front will break the KCR-Modi partnership in Telangana Assembly elections.
 
He described the TRS and Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) as Modi's "B" and "C" teams. "We will defeat B and C teams in this election. Next year we will defeat A team."
 
Gandhi said when Telangana state was formed, people had dreamt of 'golden Telangana' but only the family of KCR has turned 'golden'.
 
IANS
 

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Telangana: KCR, opponents engage in no-holds-barred attack

Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao (File photo: IANS)
Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao (File photo: IANS)
With barely three days to go for the campaigning to end for the Telangana Assembly polls, major contenders for power are engaged in a no-holds-barred attack on each other.
 
Leading the campaign of ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), its President K. Chandrashekhar Rao has termed Prime Minister Narendra Modi a 'liar' and Congress President Rahul Gandhi a 'joker'.
 
Congress-led People's Front and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders are returning the favour in the same coin, branding KCR and his family members as 'thieves' and 'looters' of the newly created state.
 
KCR is known for using choicest words in Telugu with Telangana accent to run down his rivals. Popular for his oratory skills, he often lands himself in controversies through bitter verbal attacks.
 
If KCR and president of Congress party's state unit Uttam Kumar Reddy were locked in a verbal duel for last several weeks, the exchange of words intensified in recent days with the national leaders of the Congress and BJP joining the campaign.
 
"Is the country your father's jagir (fief)," thundered KCR at an election rally last week, targeting Modi over not allowing the state to increase reservation for Muslims to 12 percent. At another rally, he remarked that Modi has 'Hindu Muslim disease'.
 
The TRS chief was further angered by Modi's attack on his beliefs. The Prime Minister had poked fun at KCR for relying on astrologers, 'pooja path' and 'nimbu mirchi'. KCR described Modi as 'liar' when the latter made sarcastic remark on TRS leader's promise to transform Nizamabad town into London.
 
Modi, BJP President Amit Shah, Congress chief Rahul Gandhi and other leaders are all hitting out at KCR for his family rule. They all have a common point - only KCR, his son, daughter and two nephews benefited from TRS rule.
 
Going a step ahead, Congress leader and Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu termed KCR and his family as 'Ali Baba Aur 4 Chor'.
 
Rahul Gandhi termed KCR as 'Khao Commission Rao', alleging that he received kickbacks in irrigation and other projects.
 
Hitting out at what they call the autocratic rule of KCR and drawing a parallel between him and KCR, both Rahul Gandhi and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N. Chandrababu Naidu described the TRS leader as 'Chota Modi'.
 
Like in 2014, the TRS is harping on the slogan of Telangana pride to woo the voters. "Will you allow yourselves to become slaves of Delhi?" KCR asks people at his rallies taking potshots at the Congress and BJP.
 
As the TDP is contesting the polls in alliance with Congress, the TRS made Telangana self-respect the core of its campaign. 
 
The ruling party alleged that by being part of a coalition government in Telangana, Naidu is looking to harm Telagana. "Do you want your decisions to be taken in Amaravati?" asks KCR, referring to the Andhra Pradesh capital.
 
At one rally, KCR remarked that even if his party was defeated in elections. he would not lose anything. "I will take rest at my farm house," he said.
 
"He was anyway not coming to the Secretariat and meeting people. He was taking rest at the posh Pragati Bhavan he built for himself. It is better if he takes rest at farm house instead of at Pragati Bhavan," taunted Telangana Jana Samithi leader M. Kodandaram, a one-time friend of KCR during the Telangana movement and now a part of People's Front.
 
IANS
 

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IndiGo adds Bhopal and Jabalpur as new destinations

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Low-cost carrier IndiGo has announced plans to introduce non-stop flights on the Bhopal-Hyderabad and Jabalpur-Hyderabad routes with effect from January 2019.
 
A press release from the airline said it would also introduce a fourth daily return flight between Hyderabad and Tirupati.
 
Bhopal and Jabalpur will be the airline's 65th and 66th destinations and the third city in Madhya Pradesh after Indore that it will fly to.
 
Mr William Boulter, Chief Commercial Officer, IndiGo said, “We are pleased to announce Bhopal and Jabalpur as our 65th and 66th destinations effective January 2019. We will operate daily non-stop flights from Bhopal and Jabalpur to connect these cities with Hyderabad. We will also be introducing a 4th daily return flight between Hyderabad and Tirupati.” 
 
“IndiGo will continue to expand its network to meet the requirements of both business and leisure travellers wherever they demand it. It is our constant endeavour to provide more flexibility of choice to our customers...," he added.
 
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