The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has started its internal consultations on Budget 2020. The party plans to reach out to all stakeholders and give its feedback to the Narendra Modi government and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman (pictured). General Secretary (organisation) BL Santhosh is leading the exercise. "Any feedback and suggestion that helps the party and the government to increase its connect with the ground realities are welcome," party's spokesperson on economic affairs Gopal Agarwal said. The consultations started on December 19 and will continue till January 14. The plan is to hold 11 sectoral dialogues. The reports from these consultations after deliberation with BJP national working president J P Nadda would be forwarded to the government.
A senior faculty member of Presidency University led a protest rally against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019, and the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Kolkata, a video of which has gone viral on social media. The video shows Pradip Basu, dean of humanities and social sciences, raising slogans like “Burn the copy of NRC”, “Burn the copy of CAA”, and “Dump the Fascist regime”, to the cheers of the students rallying behind him. Basu said on Thursday the 4-km march from the Presidency University campus in College Street to Shyambazaar on December 24 was spontaneous and no flags of political parties or of student unions were raised in it. “I felt the need to protest and when the students approached me, I immediately agreed,” he said. An official of the varsity said the institute would not comment on the decision of an individual to join a protest march. “We have always stood for democratic traditions,” he said.
Kalyan Singh missing from meet
Kalyan Singh was missing at the high-profile gathering in the midst of which Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled a 25-foot bronze statue of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in Lucknow on December 25, the latter’s birth anniversary. A special CBI court in Lucknow has framed charges against Singh, former Uttar Pradesh chief minister, in the 1992 Babri Masjid demolition case. Singh, who was earlier exempted from facing trial in the case due to the Constitutional immunity he enjoyed as governor of Rajasthan, was summoned by the court after his tenure expired recently. Singh’s grandson and UP Minister of State Sandeep Singh was also not there at the event.