Congress leader in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury put his party in a spot with a tweet on border skirmishes between Indian and Chinese troops. Warning China, the MP from Behrampore, West Bengal, had tweeted on Monday: “Be careful China, Indian forces know how to defang the venomous snakes like you, entire world is watching the sinister design of yellow expansionist. I would suggest the govt to accord diplomatic recognition to Taiwan without much delay.” The tweet alarmed the Congress leadership, and Chowdhury was asked to delete it. On Tuesday, Congress’s foreign affairs department chairman and Rajya Sabha member Anand Sharma disassociated the party from Chowdhury’s views. He tweeted that the Congress recognises and values the special strategic partnership between India and China, and that Chowdhary’s views on China “are his own and do not reflect the party position”.
The extended lockdown has given most people an unexpected opportunity to pick up a new hobby or skill, staying fit or brushing up some old talents. Robert Vadra used the free time to teach one of his children how to drive. Vadra, son-in-law of Congress president Sonia Gandhi, was spotted on more than one occasion imparting driving skills to his child on the near-empty roads of Lutyens’ Delhi, with some security personnel in tow.
No SOP Show
The Election Commission had agreed to hold elections to nine Legislative Council seats of Maharashtra this month on a special request from the Maharashtra Governor and the state government. The polls – which were scheduled for May 21 – were to be the first election conducted by the EC during the coronavirus pandemic. The standard operating procedure, or SOP, for these polls were expected to become the template for remaining elections this year. However, the Commission was first waiting to see whether it needs to organise voting at all for these seats. By Monday, 14 candidates had filed nomination for nine seats. On Tuesday, four candidates withdrew their nomination and one nomination was found invalid, leaving exactly nine candidates in the fray for the nine seats. So EC will not have to devise an SOP for voting now.
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