TUESDAY www.thestatesman.com 06 DECEMBER 2022 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 12 |` 5.00|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR FAROOQ VOWS TO FIGHT ALL POLLS IN J&K P5 NEPALI CONGRESS EMERGES AS LARGEST PARTY EAM DEFENDS INDIA’S OIL IMPORT FROM RUSSIA P8 WEATHER Generally clear. Sunny weather is also anticipated. Temperature will be in the range of 28-16 degrees Celsius. RAINFALL: NIL RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max.68% TEMPERATURE ENGLAND SEAL 74-RUN VICTORY OVER PAKISTAN P9 Exit polls: BJP to sweep Gujarat, cliffhanger in HP P12 India has emerged as a powerful country in world: PM Modi Gujarat sees nearly 60 per cent polling in the second phase Min. 55% STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE Max: 28°C Min: 16°C SUN RISES SUN SETS 06:02 hrs 16:52 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS 15:28 hrs 04:11 hrs Full moon on 08 December NEW DELHI/ AHMEDABAD, 5 DECEMBER he BJP is set to retain Gujarat with a thumping majority and narrowly hold on to Himachal Pradesh, a poll of exit polls predicted this evening. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is likely to tighten its grip on Delhi by winning the civic polls. But in Gujarat, AAP is likely to finish third and manage only single digits despite its aggressive campaign, the polls said. The results of the Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh elections will be announced on Thursday. The Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) election results will come out a day before. The BJP is expected to comfortably win Prime Minister Narendra Modi's home turf, the exit polls predicted. The poll of exit polls gave BJP 131 of 182 seats in Gujarat and the Congress and its allies 41. If pollsters have got it right, this would BJP's best performance since 2002. The Congress's tally is expected to dip considerably since 2017 when it confined the BJP to dou- T THUMBNAILS Artists dressed up in mythological attires of Hanuman and Lord Ram during Hanuman Jayanti celebrations near Patala Anjaneya Swamy Temple, in Bengaluru on Monday. ANI ble digits (99), just seven more than the halfway mark. This time, the party's campaign lacked fizz as Rahul Gandhi's Bharat Jodo Yatra seemed to be their main focus, while AAP projected itself as the BJP's main rival. The BJP is likely to fend off antiincumbency in Himachal. The exit polls predict 35 of 68 seats for the BJP - barely the majority mark - with the Congress close behind at 29 seats. AAP may not open its account in the hill state. Meanwhile, Gujarat recorded a voter turnout of 58.80 per cent till 5 pm in the second phase of assembly elections for 93 seats in the state on Monday. According to Election Commission data, Sabarkantha district recorded the highest voter turnout at 65.84 per cent, while Ahmedabad recorded the lowest voter turnout at 53.57 per cent. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is a registered voter in the Ranip area of the city here, was the first among top leaders to cast his vote this morning. UnionHomeMinisterAmitShah and Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel were the other top BJP leaders to cast their votes during the second phase of polling today. Polling was held today in 93 of the total 182 constituencies spread over all districts in north, central and eastern Gujarat, which also comprise the tribal areas adjoining Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. Like polling in the first phase, the turnout of voters in the second phase too was low in the morning but picked up pace towards the afternoon. Poll of Polls 182 BJP 135 Total seat- Majority Cong 36 92 AAP 09 Others 02 Gujarat 68 BJP 35 Total seat- Majority Cong 30 35 Others 03 AAP 00 Himachal Pradesh PM thanks world leaders for their support to India’s G-20 presidency STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 5 DECEMBER Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed gratitude and thanks to US President Joe Biden and other world leaders for extending their support towards India's G-20 presidency. Responding to a tweet from the American president, the PM said; ''Thank you @POTUS. Your valued support will be a source of strength for India’s G-20 Presidency. It is important we all work together to build a better planet.'' Biden had last week tweeted; ''India is a strong partner of the United States, and I look forward to supporting my friend Prime Minister Modi during India’s G20 presidency. Together we will advance sustainable and inclusive growth while tackling shared challenges like the climate, energy, and food crises.'' The PM, responding to a tweet by the French President, tweeted; ''Thank you, my dear friend, @EmmanuelMacron! I look forward to consulting you closely during India's G20 Presidency, as we work to focus the world's attention on the issues that affect humanity as a whole.'' Macron had yesterday tweeted; ''One Earth. One Family. One Future. India has taken over the presidency of #G20India! I trust my friend @NarendraModi to bring us together in order to build peace and a more sustainable world.'' Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida tweeted; ''Congratulations, PM Modi @narendramodi, on assuming the G20 Presidency. As the G7 Presidency next year, I also look forward to working closely with you in addressing various challenges that the intentional community faces.'' Spain Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez tweeted; ''We must keep working together to address global challenges and to ensure fair & inclusive green and digital transitions. One Earth, One Family, One Future. All the best to @narendramodi in the #G20India Presidency. You can count on Spain’s support!'' President of the European Council Charles Michel tweeted; ''Congratulations to India on the start of its #G20 presidency. Looking forward to working with @narendramodi as his country will lead discussions on how to address the world’s most pressing challenges in 2023.'' PM holds all-party meet on G-20: Prime Minister Narendra Modi today presided over a meeting of all major political parties to seek their suggestions on India successfully hosting the G-20 Summit next year. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin, and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal were among those who attended the meeting. Political leaders who attended the meeting included Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge, former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda, CPI (M) General secretary Sitarama Yechury, CPI General secretary D Raja and Telugu Desam Party chief N Chandrababu Naidu. From the government side, senior ministers like Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh, S Jaishankar Prahlad Joshi, Nirmala Sitharama and Piyush Goyal were present. Foreign SecretaryVinay Mohan Kwatra briefed the participants on the programmes planned by the government during its presidency. The country is expected to hold over 200 meetings and events in the run-up to the G-20 Summit to be held in September next year. STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 5 DECEMBER Stating that India has emerged as a powerful country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said participation of every citizen of the country in G20 should be a message to the whole world. The Prime Minister, who inaugurated a two-day meeting of national office-bearers at BJP headquarters here, also mentioned about vibrant border villages, 'sneh milan' to connect to these villages and booth empowerment. Briefing the media about the PM's closed-door meeting, BJP's National Vice-President Raman Singh said "PM Modi discussed various topics. The PM discussed the vibrant border village. He said a 'sneh milan' should be organised and for that a campaign be run to connect these villages culturally." "Sneh milan ceremony will exchange cultural and social topics of a state, so that people of different states of India will get a chance to know about each other," said the PM in his address at the meeting. Raman Singh further informed, "Booth empowerment will be discussed in the meeting. All the office-bearers will discuss and plan how to empower every booth." Mentioning the G20 event in his address PM said "India has emerged as a powerful country in the world. Participation of every citizen of India in G20 should be a message to the whole world." Other topics were discussed in the meeting like Kashi Tamil sangam. The officer-bearers will also deliberate on the strategies and preparations for the state Assembly elections next year and general elections 2024. Earlier in the day, the Prime Minister arrived in the national capital after casting his vote in the Assembly elections of Gujarat and was welcomed by BJP national president JP Nadda at the party head- quarters. Modi, Nadda and other leaders attended the opening session of the two-day national office bearers' meeting of the BJP at the party headquarters in the national capital. Besides, the national office bearers of the party, in-charge and co-in-charge of all the states, state presidents and organization general secretaries of all states have also been called for the meeting. Presided over by Nadda, the meeting will deliberate on the strategies and preparations for the state Assembly elections next year, sources said. Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, along with three northeastern states -- Tripura, Nagaland and Meghalaya -- will go to the polls next year. Various organisational activities from booth committees will also be discussed, the sources said. According to the party sources, the meeting has been called to discuss the strategy and preparations for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. Also in attendance are National General secretaries Dushyant Gautam, Bhupender Yadav, Baijayant Panda, Tarun Chugh, CT Ravi. In addition, BJP state president UP Bhupendra Chaudhary, Uttrakhand party president Mahendra Bhatt and other party state presidents are also participating in the meeting. A senior BJP leader said, "In view of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections and 2023 Vidhan Sabha elections, in the twoday meeting, information about the government's achievements and strengthening the organisation will be shared. The functioning of the organisation will also be reviewed in the meeting." Considering India's G-20 presidency a major achievement, the party will also outline programmes linked with it to apprise the people about the country's growing global influence under the leadership of PM Modi, he said further. Model funeral complex in Hyd to promote communal amity SC refuses plea for removing wrong historical facts on Taj Mahal STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE HYDERABAD, 5 DECEMBER A unique modern funeral complex has been set up by the Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) in the city providing separate facilities for the last rites for Hindus, Musims and Christians. The aesthetically designed complex promoting communal harmony has been appropriately named Mukti Ghat. It also boasts of zero pollution. Built at a cost of Rs 16.25 crore the new funeral complex will be inaugurated tomorrow by the Telangana industry minister KT Rama Rao at Fathullaguda near Uppal. The complex has been built on a plot measuring about 6.5 acres which was once used for dumping construction and demolition debris. Around two acres of the available land has been dedicated to build a Muslim bur- ial ground, another two for a Christian cemetery while the crematorium and other facilities for Hindu last rites were constructed over 2.5 acres of land. The modern funeral complex comes with mortuaries to allow the bodies to be preserved till their loved ones are able to reach the city to catch a last glimpse. The authorities have also thoughtfully set up cameras to help the families and kins to watch live streaming of the last rites of their loved ones in case they are unable to reach due to financial difficulties or problems with visa. The complex also boasts of acres of greenery with aesthetic landscaping offering a serenity that is usually absent at the traditional crematoriums or funeral homes. Electrical furnaces have been set up run on solar power to address the issue of environmental pollution along with a sewerage treatment plant. Water used in bathing or in washrooms will be recycled to water the plants. There is also a complete ban on any noise or playing of drums or other instruments keeping in mind the solemnity of the place. There are separate prayer halls, aesthetically pleasing open spaces for congregation and halls to perform the rites which take place after the tenth day. The Muslim and Christian burial places have been constructed with three levels with each accommodating about 550 bodies. A series of arches act as screens to separate the burial space from the main block. Appropriate art work adds colour to the otherwise stark yet serene space. AGENCIES NEW DELHI, 5 DECEMBER The Supreme Court on Monday declined to entertain a plea, which sought the removal of alleged wrong historical facts in connection with the Taj Mahal's construction from the history books. A bench of Justices M.R. Shah and C.T. Ravikumar told the petitioner that the PILs are not meant for a fishing enquiry. "We are not here to reopen history. Let history continue. The writ petition is dismissed as withdrawn," said the bench, asking the petitioner to make a representation before the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). The apex court made these observations while hearing a plea filed by Surjit Singh Yadav. The petitioner had moved the Supreme Court seeking direction to the Centre to remove the alleged wrong historical facts, from history books and textbooks, in connection with the construction of the Taj Mahal. The petitioner also sought directions to the ASI to conduct an inquiry to determine the age of the 17th century monument, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Clarifying that it has not expressed anything on the merits, the top court said, "The petitioner is granted liberty to make representation to the ASI." The plea contended that it is extremely strange why all the court chroniclers of Shah Jahan have not mentioned the name of the architect of this magnificent mausoleum. The plea argued that this quite clearly indicates that the mansion of Raja Man Singh was not demolished but only modified and renovated to create the current look of the Taj Mahal. On October 21, the Supreme Court junked a plea seeking a direction for a "fact-finding inquiry" into Taj Mahal's history and also a direction for the "opening of 22 rooms" on the monument's premises. The petitioner had moved the apex court after the Allahabad High Court in May this year, declined to entertain a plea by one Rajneesh Singh. The high court noted that the petitioner failed to establish which of his legal or constitutional rights were being infringed.
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