Updated: May 28, 2021 7:09:36 am
At a time the BJP-led government is waged in a battle against the pandemic, there is another issue simmering in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh. With protests against the delay in releasing the pending payments for sugarcane farmers brewing in the state, BSP MP Danish Ali has shot off a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, reminding him about his promise during election rallies before 2017 UP Assembly elections — that the payment would be done within 14 days of the government coming to power. To make it politically spicier, Ali has written that the Sena-NCP-Congress government in Maharashtra has already paid 95 per cent of the dues. He pointed out that as of May 12, only 62.29 per cent of the total balance has been paid in UP. Most of the non-paid sugar mills are in the western UP, Ali pointed out. With UP bound for elections early next year, the Opposition seems to be all set to put the government on the mat on the issue.
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar is scheduled to meet his US counterpart, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, along with other key members of the Joe Biden administration on Friday. It is the first visit by a senior Indian minister to the US after President Biden assumed office in January. Jaishankar, who has spent a substantial part of his diplomatic career looking after the US account, may also meet some top figures in business, politics and the Indian community.
The government on Thursday extended the tenures of IB and RAW chiefs by one more year. Intelligence Bureau director Arvind Kumar and RAW secretary Samant Goel were completing their tenures next month. The extension of RAW chief’s tenure comes days after the government appointed Maharashtra cadre IPS officer Subodh Kumar Jaiswal as CBI director. Jaiswal was earlier speculated to be Goel’s successor. However, with the CBI director’s tenure being fixed for two years, he will be out of contention.
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