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Modi took election losers in cabinet: Shatrughan

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sinhaNew Delhi:Disgruntled BJP MP Shatrughan Sinha has lamented the entry of “Johnnies-come-lately” and those who lost the Lok Sabha polls in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government while seniors were ignored.

But the actor-turned-politician made it clear in his biography “Anything But Khamosh” (Om Books International) that the Bharatiya Janata Party would perhaps be his last political party.

The book is critical of both Modi and BJP president Amit Shah, particularly in the context of the BJP’s defeats in Delhi and Bihar after the sweeping 2014 Lok Sabha election.

“Not only Johnnies-come-lately but also some who had lost the Lok Sabha elections, perhaps humiliatingly, were rewarded with not one but two and three ministerial posts, marginalising those who’d won with a record margin,” Sinha said in the book, written by renowned journalist Bharathi S. Pradhan.

The book takes no names but two prominent BJP leaders who got into the Modi cabinet despite losing the Lok Sabha battle were Arun Jaitley and Smriti Irani.

The book will be launched here on Wednesday in the presence of BJP veterans L.K. Advani and Yashwant Sinha as well as Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

Shatrughan Sinha also reacted to Amit Shah’s reported hints that the BJP might take act against him.

“I didn’t know my people were so helpless that they had to wait for an election to take action. That too against a man who had won with a vote share percentage of more than 55 percent which even our prime minister and Kejriwal didn’t reach.”

He said he could contest as an independent and had the support of many, ranging from Nitish Kumar to Lalu Prasad to Rahul Gandhi. “I have friends everywhere.

“That’s why I had made the statement: ‘Those who want to take action against me must remember Newton’s third law: Every action has an equal and opposite reaction’.”

He said Amit Shah had boasted that the BJP would win with two-third majority in Bihar. “Perhaps it had become a habit with him because he had said the same thing in Delhi also. But ultimately we got only two or three seats (out of 70) there instead of two-third.”

Sinha also took on Bihar BJP leaders.

“Right from state president Mangal Pandey to Sushil Kumar Modi to Rajiv Pratap Rudy to Shahnawaz Hussain, anybody and everybody, repeated his words like parrots with full zeal, enthusiasm and over confidence.”

“The party was hijacked by some people in Bihar who conveniently played deaf-mute. They were not ready to listen to me or to speak to me. That’s how they created an impression which the opposition seized an opportunity and the ‘Bihari versus Bahari’ slogan was coined.”

But Sinha said he was unlikely to join any other party.

“I’ve always said, BJP is my first and perhaps my last party. Once a friend, always a friend. ‘Ladte jhagadte hain’ (we fight) but we remain family.”

“A member’s equation with the party is like the relationship between a husband and wife.”

Shatrughan said of the BJP: “From being called a party with a difference, we began to be called a party with differences.”

 

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Budget Session of UP to begin from Feb 16

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Chaired by CM Yogi Adityanath, Cabinet decided to begin The Budget session of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly from February 16. The Assembly session would be significant as the upcoming budget with the Assembly elections in the state due early next year.

The Cabinet also cleared the draft of Uttar Pradesh State Sports University Bill-2021, which will be placed in the Assembly in the Budget Session. 

Besides that, they will be clearing the Uttar Pradesh Data Centre Policy to give incentives to private companies to set up of data center parks and units in the state. The government spokesperson said that these incentives and concessions would be given in purchase of land, stamp duty etc. with extra incentives for those who would invest in Bundelkhand and Purvanchal regions of the state which would promote setting up of at least three Data Centre Parks in the state and 10 data center units.

The Cabinet not only manifested the proposal for allowing expansion of Jewar International Airport near Noida to five runways in a phased manner but also approved the proposal of estimated expenditure of Rs 426 crore for upgrading existing airstrip in Ayodhya district to an airport.

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