Gujarat: Six killed as car rams into auto-rickshaw and motorbike in Anand district

Times of India | 1 month ago | 11-08-2022 | 11:08 pm

Gujarat: Six killed as car rams into auto-rickshaw and motorbike in Anand district

ANAND: Six persons, including three women, were killed after a speeding SUV rammed into an auto-rickshaw and motorbike near Sojitra village in Gujarat's Anand district on Thursday evening, police said. The accident took place on a state highway connecting Anand town with Tarapur, they said. Kirit Padhiyar, who was allegedly driving the SUV, fled from the spot abandoning the vehicle but was later nabbed, said district superintendent of police Ajit Rajian. The deceased were residents of Sojitra and Boriyavi villages in the district, local police officials said. "The driver of the SUV will be booked for culpable homicide not amounting to murder under section 304 of the Indian Penal Code," SP Rajian said.

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Gujarat election may be completed by November end, BJP workers have no right to question Modi and Shah’s candidate selection: CR Paatil
The Indian Express | 23 hours ago | 26-09-2022 | 05:50 pm
The Indian Express
23 hours ago | 26-09-2022 | 05:50 pm

Gujarat BJP president CR Paatil Monday hinted that the Legislative Assembly election in the state might be completed by November end and warned his party workers against “groupism” telling them that they had “no right to question” the decision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah when it comes to the selection of candidates.Addressing a gathering of page committee (five-member committees formed for each page of electoral rolls) members in Anand, where he also inaugurated the district Kamalam office, Paatil said party workers “should not come to Gandhinagar” to make representations for aspiring candidates.“I feel that the (Gujarat) election will be completed by the end of November. The last two times, in 2012 and 2017, the elections were held on December 5 onwards. But this time, it may be advanced by about 10-12 days. No one has told me this and I haven’t spoken to anyone … The media will say I declared the election dates but I don’t have the power to declare the election dates.”Warning leaders against “groupism” ahead of the ticket distributions, Paatil said that the final word on candidates rests with PM Modi and Shah. “Don’t worry about who gets the ticket… That will be decided by PM Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah. I don’t have the power to allot tickets. Many times, some of you aspiring for the tickets feel your name was cut off although you were capable, but it is not so…” he said.“We will send the biodata of each of the aspiring leaders to Delhi. PM Modi and Amit Shah will decide based on the representations of all castes, capability, the importance of seats and so on… You do not have the right to ask why someone was given a ticket because that ultimate decision is with Modiji. Can we challenge him and ask why was someone given and why someone was not given the ticket? Forget about these differences. Anyone who comes with the lotus symbol, you have to make them win. If you have complaints, put them in front of the observers who will come later,” Paatil added.Paatil warned the leaders to not “beeline in Gandhinagar” with aspiring leaders of their choice. “Another 100 will come with another leader after you and you both will look at each other as rivals… Please don’t try to come to Gandhinagar to seek tickets. It damages the organisation. We do not want groupism. I have come to take this assurance from you.”Paatil further urged the page committee leaders to visit their members for tea to build rapport. “We will have the Diwali festival in between… don’t slack. You are all members of the page committee… No matter what, go and visit the homes and one of the five page (committee) members have tea with them. It is my request to not go in big groups of 25 to burden families and have them prepare 25 cups of tea. Please visit only in twos, so as to not burden the women of that house… We have seen the power of the page committees. We have won local body polls on your strength… In fact, in the last two years, we have won every single election in the state.”Enlisting the elections won under his leadership in the state, Paatil said that the party also decided to curtail the number of positions that could be held by the party leaders simultaneously. “The BJP recently won 318 of 360 institutional and cooperative elections… We have been on a winning streak in these elections for the last two years… BJP workers have taken the responsibility of running all sugar factories, district cooperative banks, agricultural produce market committees (APMCs), agriculture banks and all but one milk dairy in the state — only your (Kaira district cooperative) dairy is not yet with BJP. This is a blemish on us. When the next election comes, we have to wipe out this blemish.”Paatil added: “Now, in the party, anyone who contests any elections for party posts and wins, cannot contest elections in cooperative sectors… We have ended the practice of having double posts. We have decided ‘one leader, one post; one family, one post’. There are lakhs of party workers — so many have got a chance to do work in the party and contest various elections. That is why the party has been strengthened. The BJP has those workers who can win every seat in the Assembly polls. All you have to do is to win the page. We have to win by a margin of more than 50,000 votes.”Paatil praised the Anand unit of the party for having a surplus sum of Rs 20 lakh from the funds collected to build the new office building and urged that the new office should be used to devise an “unbeatable strategy to win all seven” Assembly seats in Anand district.He said: “The first use of this office has to be made to win all seven seats in the districts. Some people have been winning (from Anand) for years by way of unscrupulous means like setting and managing (voters) but this time the BJP Page committee is ready to give them a fitting answer. There is no other unit of the party that is as strong as the Anand district, I can see that. We have to create a record. If there is a record in anyone’s name in your district, it is up to us to change that record to the name of the BJP. Will you do it? We have to break the record.”

Gujarat election may be completed by November end, BJP workers have no right to question Modi and Shah’s candidate selection: CR Paatil
All roads lead to garba grounds after Covid lull
The Indian Express | 1 day ago | 26-09-2022 | 12:50 am
The Indian Express
1 day ago | 26-09-2022 | 12:50 am

Garbas are back and the state is all set to witness its grandeur with Navratri beginning on Monday, two years after the Covid-19 pandemic halted the celebrations.All roads lead to garba grounds in Vadodara, even before the actual festival has commenced. Several local garba organisers in Manjalpur, Karelibaug, Waghodia Road and other areas organised “ratris before Navratri” over the weekend on Saturday and Sunday, to allow patrons two additional days of merriment.Kapil Shah, a resident of Manjalpur, who attended a garba at a local ground in the area on Saturday, said, “Now that the pandemic is almost over, normalcy is back… markets are open and people are excited to get garba costumes made, check on the latest garba playlists and add new steps into the performances… We are looking forward. The pre-Navratri garba had a huge crowd.”Tarak Patel, vice-chairman of the Resources Development Committee (RDC) of United Way of Baroda — the biggest garba in Vadodara — said that they have decided to make the venue more vibrant to beat the blues that Covid-19 has left behind.Patel told The Indian Express, “The decorations will be more colorful and vibrant as garbas will be held after two years. We have additional lighting arrangements. Singer Atul Purohit has already announced the launch of three new garba (songs) this year.”UWB, which will hold its event at a ground in Kalali for the first time, has already got around 35,000 registrations so far. “We are expecting 35,000 to 38,000 players daily, apart from spectators. This year, the ground in Kalali is more approachable from the main road and has ample parking space. Since Gandhi Jayanti coincides with Navratri, we have decided to announce a tricolour dress code for the players. We will also play the national anthem to pay tribute to Mahatma Gandhi…,” said Tarak Patel.The Vadodara Navratri Festival (VNF), which will be held at its usual venue in Navlakhi, has also planned “surprises” for the players. Mayank Patel of VNF said, “We have set up food courts at both entry points with delicacies from across Gujarat. After Covid-19 restrictions interrupted garbas for two years, this year, the organisers are making it more interesting for the participants. We have surprises… it will be revealed during the nine nights.” VNF has got close to 45,000 registrations, Mayank Patel said.The organisers have already put out a list of the songs to allow groups to choreograph the garbas.Mitanshi Parikh, a student, who is attending VNF, said her group of friends had hired a choreographer. “We are a group of 15… Every year, we choreograph our own steps but this time, since we are playing commercial garba after long, we hired a choreographer. We want to make this garba very special. We have practiced for almost a month… Our costumes are ready too.”The royal family of Vadodara has also organised a heritage garba at the Motibaug palace. Apart from the major commercial garbas, several other organisers have also decided to add “unique” features to garbas this year.In Anand and Kheda districts, several Garba organisers are expecting NRI players, who have come down to celebrate Navratri. Ashmit Patel, a resident of Anand, who has arrived from the US along with his family, said, “We are here for 10 days… It is a great feeling to be in India and in our hometown for Navratri because despite the best of things we get to organise the festivals there, the feel, flavour and fervour of being in Gujarat for garbas is something different. We did not want to miss it.”Newsletter | Click to get the day’s best explainers in your inboxOrganisers have also increased their insurance costs this year, following the bad weather forecast for Navratri, to as high as Rs 6.5 crore for one garba venue in Vadodara. UWB has also brought in special soil to ensure fast draining of water in case of rain.Tarak Patel said, “Given the indications for rain during the nine nights, we have used special sand that would allow the ground to be dried faster.”

All roads lead to garba grounds after Covid lull
When Raju Srivastava was told to not make fun of PM Narendra Modi: ‘Pehla hi joke maine unpe maara…’
The Indian Express | 5 days ago | 21-09-2022 | 05:50 pm
The Indian Express
5 days ago | 21-09-2022 | 05:50 pm

Actor-comedian Raju Srivastava passed away on September 21, just a month after he had suffered a cardiac arrest. The comedian, who shot to fame with The Great Indian Laughter Challenge, was mourned by the film industry and several stand-up comics for his contribution to the comedy scene in India. Raju is known to have never even famously spared Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his jokes.In a 2017 interview, he had revealed how PM Modi had enjoyed his mimicry as well. “Modi ji told me, ‘If you wish to, you should mimic me, just take care that the crowd should be entertained.’ He believes mimicry is an art. Modi ji in fact said that there should not be in any discrimination, that powerful people are not poked fun at, and only rest of the sections are the subject of one’s humour,” Raju had said.During a conversation with comedian Sorabh Pant, Raju had elaborated more about performing for the PM and how he had been warned to not crack any jokes about him. He recalled the rigid atmosphere where there were security officials in every corner and then he was eventually asked about jokes he was planning to crack.“Gujarat me mera show tha, jo patang udayi jati hai, wo tyohaar me. Toh vaha pe Modiji aane wale the, badi security vicurity thi sab charo taraf. Humlog ki bhi talashi valashi li ja rahi thi. Kutte vutte chode gaye, kutte vutte sunghke gaye. Uske baad aa gaye ek do IAS officers. ‘Mr Srivastava, toh ap kya karenge? Kya kya perform karenge?’ Mene kaha ye office ka kaam nai hai. Ki ap file jaisa bana rahe ho. Approve kar rahe ho kuch. Mahaul dekh ke, mood dekh ke karenge (I had my show in Gujarat, the one where you fly kites. Modiji had attended it and there was security in every corner. I was even searched, and dogs were let loose. After that, IAS officers asked me, ‘Srivastava so what will you do? What will you perform?’ I answered that this isn’t work at office that needs to be filed. Based on the mood, I will perform),” he said.”Remembering the experience, he added, “Shuru me keh rahe ‘Modiji ka mat kariye (mimicry)’. Main aaya, pehle hi joke maine unpe mara, Modiji pe. Bohot hasse, taali maar maar ke hasse. Aur 10 se 15 minute ho gaya, mene mic se hi bola. Public khush thi, taali vaali baja rahe the, ‘once more, once more’ ho raha hai. Toh maine Modiji se kaha, ‘Sir, mujhe bataya gaya hai ki aapko nikalna hai, apke pass time…’ (as a reply PM Modi said) ‘nai, nai, nai, nai, are sunao, bhot anand aa raha hai. Aapko bohot din baad sun raha hun bohot anand aa raha hai. Sunaiye, sunaiye, mere pass samay hai’ (In the beginning, they said don’t mimic Modi. I came, and cracked the first joke on him. He laughed and clapped. The public was happy and asked me for an encore. So I told Modi, that I was told that you had to leave….and he answered, ‘No, no, I am very entertained. Listening to you after many days, so keep talking, I have time.”Raju Srivastava’s funeral will take place on Thursday morning in Delhi.

When Raju Srivastava was told to not make fun of PM Narendra Modi: ‘Pehla hi joke maine unpe maara…’