Updated: March 6, 2018 12:28:40 am
Congress’s stake claim
Vasantdada Patil and N K Tirpude, leaders of the Congress and Congress-I legislature parties, jointly presented to the Maharashtra governor a list of 148 MLAs who, they claimed, would support a coalition government of the two parties. They had informed the governor that they would present the names of two more MLAs, the two leaders told newsmen later. But the governor, Sadiq Ali, told them that he would have to consult the Janata Party leaders before coming to a decision. The leader of the Janata legislature party, Uttamrao Patil, and the president of the Maharashtra unit of the party, S M Joshi, called on the governor and staked the party’s claim to form a government as they had the support of 145 members in the 288-seat Assembly.
Hua reelected chief
Chinese premier and party chairman, Hua Guofeng, was re-elected premier by the fifth National People’s Congress. The party vice-chairman and defence minister, Marshal Ye Jianying, was elected chairman of the Congress, the source said. Marshal Ye, 80, was vice-chairman of the Fourth People’s Congress in 1973.
The decisions to keep Hua, 57, in the post of premier and to elect Marshal Ye were reportedly made by the central committee of the Chinese Communist Party when it met in plenary session from February 18 to 23. The vice-chairman, Deng Xiaoping, 74, considered a possible contender for the job, had announced he did not want be premier due to his age.
Afghan transit rights
President Daoud of Afghanistan will take up with the Pakistani leaders when he goes to Islamabad the question of providing easier transit facilities for Indo-Afghan trade. He said Afghanistan faced great difficulties because it is landlocked. He said Afghanistan was “very satisfied” with the attitude of countries like Iran and the Soviet Union which had always helped it.
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