The Congress party has emerged as the ‘biggest loser’ after the results for the West Bengal State Legislative polls were announced on Sunday. While the party had joined hands with its once arch-rival the Communist party and the Islamist Indian Secular Front (ISF), Congress failed to secure even a single seat. Interestingly, the grand old party’s political misfortune further aggravated in the constituencies where Rahul Gandhi campaigned.
It must be mentioned that Rahul Gandhi had campaigned in the two constituencies of Goalpokhar and Matigira- Naxalbari on April 14, ahead of the 5th phase of the elections. While it became evident from the election results that the Congress party lost all of the 92 seats it contested, a closer analysis of the data suggests a bigger loss for Congress scion Rahul Gandhi. The Congress candidates, who contested from Goalpokar and Matigira-Naxalbari constituencies, not only lost to its rival parties but also the security deposit.
According to the Representation of People Act, 1951, a candidate will not be refunded his security deposit by the Election Commission if the candidate fails to secure 1/6th (16.67%) of the total valid votes. As such, the candidate has to forfeit his deposit to the nodal Election body. It must be pointed out that a candidate has to pay ₹10,000 as a security deposit for fighting elections for State Legislative assembly.
Congress loses deposit in the Goalpokhar constituency, where Rahul Gandhi campaigned
As per the official results published on the website of the Election Commission of India (ECI), the Congress candidate from Goalpokhar, Masood Md. Naseem Ahsen, lost out to his counterparts in the BJP and Congress. The party managed to secure a total of 19,391 votes (EVM and postal) out of 1,61,535 valid votes. Given that Ahsen secured only 12% of the total valid votes, he had to forfeit his security. It must be mentioned that Md. Ghulam Rabbani of the Trinamool Congress won the constituency with a whopping 65.4% of the votes.
Rahul Gandhi sinks Congress’ security deposit in Matigara-Naxalbari constituency
Congress suffered a major blow in the Matigara-Naxalbari constituency as well where Rahul Gandhi had addressed a ‘large gathering.’ The BJP candidate, Anandamay Barman, won the seat with a whopping 58.1% (139785) votes. While the TMC candidate came second, Congress was yet again pushed to third place. The party’s performance in the said constituency was far more dismal than it was in the Goalpokhar constituency.
Congress candidate Sankar Malakar received only 23,060 votes (EVM+postal) out of 2,40,591 valid votes. In terms of percentage, Congress received only 9.58% votes, far lower than the 16.67% threshold. As such, Malakar too had to forfeit his security deposit.
Rahul Gandhi and his ‘Coronavirus gimmick’ during election campaigning in West Bengal
On April 14, Rahul Gandhi was seen addressing large gatherings in Goalpokhar and Matigara-Naxalbari in West Bengal ahead of the 5th phase of Vidhan Sabha polls. In a tweet, the official handle of the party tweeted, “Shri Rahul Gandhi receives a tremendous reception as he arrives for his public meeting at Goalpokhar in West Bengal.” The visuals, shared by the party, clearly showed how social distancing guidelines went for a toss during his rally.
However, just 4 days later, Rahul Gandhi resorted to virtue signalling. On April 18, Congress scion Rahul Gandhi sparked controversy by attributing election rallies to the rising Coronavirus cases in the country. In a tweet, he said, “Bimaro aur mritako ki bhi itni bheed pehali baar dekhi hai (I have seen such a large crowd of infected and deceased people too for the first time).” The Congress dynast took potshots at the ruling BJP for its aggressive campaign ahead of the 6th phase of polls in West Bengal.
Rahul Gandhi was absent from the campaign trail in West Bengal during the four phases of the State Legislative polls. Although the likes of Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Salman Khurshid, and Jaiveer Shergill had addressed gatherings ahead of the polls, Rahul Gandhi remained missing until the 4th phase. And as election results now suggest, his campaign further aggravated the party’s chances in the two constituencies.
All India Parisangh shares image from 2008 to target Modi govt
On Saturday (May 15), Dalit organisation All India Parisangh (AIP) sparked controversy by taking potshots at the Modi government using a 13-year-old image. The organisation was founded by Dalit activist and Congress leader Udit Raj.
In a tweet, AIP wrote, “Unke ‘Mann ki baat’ kyu sunna, jab Ganga pe terti lasho par bhi khamosh raha.” It loosely translates as “Why should we listen to PM Modi’s monthly radio programme ‘Mann ki Baat’ when he is silent on dead bodies floating in the river Ganga?”. The Dalit organisation shared a picture of a dog mauling a human skeleton, along the banks of a water body. At the time of writing, the image was retweeted 167 times and had 463 likes.
By posting the image, the organisation tried to insinuate that it is a recent image showing the mortal remains of a Covid-19 victim whose last rites were not performed. Reports of bodies of Covid victims floating on Ganga river have emerged in the last few days, and All India Parisangh tried to say the image also shows such an incident.
What is the Truth?
It may be noted that the image posted by All India Parisangh has the watermark of Alarmy on it, an stock image platform. Popular Twitter user ‘Befitting Facts’ pointed out that the stock image from Alarmy dates back to February 20, 2008. The disturbing picture was taken by one Dinodia Photos RM and captioned, “Dog eating dead man on Varanasi ghat, Uttar Pradesh in India.” Given the picture dates back to 2008, it must be remembered that the BJP did not have its government at the Centre nor at the State level. And as such, the unfortunate incident is not the result of PM Modi’s negligence.
Earlier, close to 100 unidentified and decomposed bodies were found floating in the Ganga, sparking fear among the locals in several districts of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. While 71 bodies were recovered from Bihar’s Buxar district, other 25 bodies were fished from Uttar Pradesh’s Ghazipur district with locals suspecting them to be the bodies of Covid victims.
After Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, in a horrifying video, at least half a dozen corpses were seen floating in the Runj river in the Panna district of Madhya Pradesh. Buxar police suspected the bodies might have floated from the neighbouring Ghazipur district of Uttar Pradesh. Authorities of both the districts were yet to confirm if the bodies were of Covid victims. As such, All India Parisangh seized the opportunity and shared a 13-year-old picture to blame the Modi government.
All India Parisangh compared Brahmins to pigs last year
Besides fake news, the Dalit organisation has been at the forefront of peddling Anti-Hindu hatred. It has time and again resorted to such vile derogatory casteist hurls targeting Brahmins, and resorted to the anti-Brahmin propaganda by posting an image of a pig wearing ‘Janeu’ – the sacred thread in July last year.
By openly propagating anti-Brahmin sentiments and comparing Brahmins to ‘pigs’, the Parisangh claimed that the Indian judiciary is only comprised of Brahmins. Expressing its contempt for the country’s judiciary, the Dalit organisation claimed that ‘Brahmin’ judges in the Indian courts only recommended fellow people from the community, who were then selected as judges by the third set of Brahmins. The derogatory comments were not only directed at the Brahmins of the country but also an attack on the independence of the judiciary.
Govt, Admin, Public – All Dropped Guard After First Covid-19 Wave: RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat
After the first wave of COVID-19, the government, administration and public dropped their guard which led to the current situation, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat said on Saturday and urged people to stay positive and proactive to fight the pandemic. Addressing a lecture series Positivity Unlimited’, Bhagwat said the country should stay united and work as a team in these testing times, instead of pointing fingers at each other.
“We are facing this situation because, whether it was the government, administration or public, everyone dropped their guard after the first wave despite indications from doctors, he said. Bhagwat said there is talk of a third wave. But, we will not be scared. We shall stand like a rock.
We have to stay positive and take precautions to keep ourselves COVID negative in the present situation, he said. The RSS chief said that this is not an appropriate time to point fingers and all should avoid making irrational remarks.
Citing England’s situation in World War II when everything seemed going against it, Bhagwat said a quote was written on the then prime minister Winston Churchill’s desk which read, “There is no pessimism in this office. We are not interested in the possibilities of defeat. They don’t exist”. Similarly, he said, in this situation we can’t give up on courage. We need to also have steely resolve.
12-Year-Old Among 4 Killed as Slabs Collapse in Ulhasnagar Building, 1 Missing
At least 4 people were killed after slabs of a residential building collapsed in Ulhasnagar town of Maharashtra’s Thane district on Saturday, Thane Municipal Corporation said. A 12-year-old child is among the four people who lost their lives. According to latest update, one person is still missing.
The incident took place in a ground-plus four-storey residential building in camp no 1 around 1.40 pm, said Santosh Kadam, chief of the regional disaster management cell of the Thane Municipal Corporation.
A slab on the fourth floor came crashing down on other slabs, trapping people in the process, he said. Local firemen rushed to the scene and rescued 11 residents, who were taken to a local hospital for first aid, the official said.
A team from the Thane Disaster Response Force is at the scene to help firemen remove the debris and rescue five others who are trapped, he added.
(With inputs from PTI and ANI)
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