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Omar takes on Modi for missing President’s Iftar party

Posted in Featured, S. Asia

Published on July 17, 2015 with No Comments

Modi had a pre-scheduled meeting with chief ministers of the north eastern states at 7 pm and hence did not come to the Iftar

Mamata skips PM meet on land bill

Virtually rejecting the Modi government’s land bill, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said her government was already following an “alternative” land acquisition policy as she skipped a meeting of the NITI Aayog called to discuss the contentious legislation. Banerjee, who was among the four non-Congress chief ministers to have not attended the meeting of the Governing Council of the NITI Aayog, said her state was following an alternative land policy as it “cannot wait indefinitely for the Centre to come up with its land acquisition policy”.

“We have framed an alternative land policy where direct purchase can be done through negotiations without any forcible acquisition,” the chief minister said at the 100th administrative meeting of the Trinamool Congress government in Burdwan.

Banerjee said her government had been able to complete various projects through direct land purchase after holding negotiations with the land owners.

“We cannot wait indefinitely for the Centre to come up with its land acquisition policy, so we have started following this model. We have taken the people into confidence while acquiring land,” the chief minister said.

Citing instances where the state had been able to give land to big projects, Banerjee said the Andal greenfield airport was given land for completion as well as NTPC’s Katwa project, among others.

 India’s President Pranab Mukherjee hosted an Iftar party that saw leaders from several political parties in attendance at Rashtrapati Bhavan in Delhi, but where Prime Minister Narendra Modi was conspicuous by his absence.

National Conference leader and former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah questioned Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Omar posted on the micro-blogging website Twitter: “Why can’t the PM just say that his religious beliefs preclude him from attending an Iftar party? I’d have far more respect for honesty.”

Modi had a pre-scheduled meeting with chief ministers of the northeastern states at 7 pm and hence did not come to the Iftar. However, Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Finance Minister Arun Jaitleywere present. Others who attended the Iftar included vice president Hamid Ansari, Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, Delhi Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal

Janata Dal-United chief Sharad Yadav, Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar, Trinamool Congress leader Derek O’Brien and several diplomats were among the attendees.

 

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