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On a break during Bharat Jodo Yatra, Rahul Gandhi says mom sent a sunscreen he doesn’t use

Congress leader Rahul Gandi, who is headlining the party's Kashmir-to-Kanyakumari Bharat Jodo Yatra, said he does not use any sunscreen to protect his skin from getting tanned. Gandhi also pulls up his sleeve to show the contrast in skin tones as the others persist. Gandhi replies, "Nor have I.” When Gandhi asks other marchers about their experiences, they enthusiastically describe their favourite moments. "So that we can avoid peak heat," the former Congress president says.

Naidu addresses massive rally on TDP’s 41st foundation day

Naidu addresses massive rally on TDP’s 41st foundation day

Addressing a rally in Hyderabad, TDP president N Chandrababu Naidu said India would become an economic superpower by 2047 with Telugu people leading global institutions. He spoke of the reforms he had pioneered in the 1990s, including the Hi-tech city and the Indian School of Business, and his vision for Amaravati. He called on intellectuals and youth to take politics seriously and encourage good and efficient leaders.

The Congress was quick to announce its first list of candidates on March 25, and senior leaders said this showed the party’s state of preparation (Congress Twitter)

Cong to take on BJP govt over graft charge in Karnataka

The Congress in Karnataka has announced its first list of candidates for the upcoming state assembly election, with a focus on corruption allegations against the BJP government and its own list of promises. The party has been energized by events such as the big birthday celebration of Siddaramaiah and the Bharat Jodo Yatra, and is looking to unify around the leadership of Shivakumar and Siddaramaiah.

HD Deve Gowda (Prateek Kumar)

Farmers’ issues in focus, JD(S) eyes expansion beyond Old Mysuru

The Janata Dal(Secular) led by HD Deve Gowda and HD Kumaraswamy is banking on farmers' issues and its 99 day Pancharatna Yatra to rally support for the Karnataka elections. The Yatra concluded on Sunday with the party announcing economic assistance, loan waivers and medical assistance to farmers. The party hopes to secure more than 65-70 seats, but faces competition from the BJP. Political analysts predict sympathy for Deve Gowda may add a few seats, but people may opt for parties that can provide a stable government.

On Wednesday, the election commission announced that the state will go to polls on May 10. (PTI)

BJP banks on welfare schemes, PM’s popularity in Karnataka

BJP leaders believe that the popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, welfare schemes and recent rejig in reservation and sub-categorisation of quotas for SCs, STs and OBCs will help the party buck anti-incumbency and retain power in the upcoming Karnataka elections on May 10. BJP is counting on the Hindu vote, while Congress is relying on Muslim votes. The party will use the duopoly of Yediyurappa and Bommai, and campaign around PM Modi's vision to ensure last-mile implementation of schemes. Fresh faces may be fielded in constituencies with long-serving incumbents.

Karnataka Congress chief DK Shivakumar was seen throwing <span class='webrupee'>₹</span>500 currency notes on the crowd during the Congress’ ‘Praja Dhwani Yatra’ in Srirangapatna assembly constituency in Mandya district (PTI)

DK Shivakumar throws 500 notes on crowd, sparks a row

DK Shivakumar, Karnataka Congress chief, has caused controversy after being caught on camera throwing currency notes to a crowd during a roadshow. Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai accused him of misusing powers and treating people like beggars. Bommai also alleged that Shivakumar has been luring BJP MLAs by offering them tickets in constituencies yet to announce candidates. Shivakumar is campaigning in Mandya, a stronghold of the JD(S).

Chief minister Basavaraj Bommai on Wednesday hit out at the Congress for orchestrating the violence, stressing that the Banjara, Bhovi and Koracha communities will continue to remain on the SC list. (PTI)

No community will be removed from SC list: CM amid protests

Amid protests from the Banjara community, Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai reassured that they will continue to remain on the SC list. He blamed Congress for orchestrating the violence, while opposition leaders accused BJP of handiwork. The internal reservation breakup recommended by the state cabinet has caused fear among the Banjaras as their share of reservation is limited to 4.5%.

Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar addresses a press conference in New Delhi on Wednesday. (ANI)

In no hurry to hold Wayanad bypoll: CEC

CEC Rajiv Kumar said the ECI is in no hurry to hold a bypoll in Wayanad, Kerala, after Rahul Gandhi was disqualified from Lok Sabha. Gandhi has 30 days to appeal his conviction of criminal defamation and the ECI will take a call after that. If term is less than a year, no election will be held.

**EDS: VIDEO GRAB VIA SANSAD TV** New Delhi: Members raise hands for the passage of a bill in the Lok Sabha during Budget Session of Parliament, in New Delhi, Wednesday, March 29, 2023. (PTI Photo) (PTI03_29_2023_000085B) (PTI)

Lok Sabha passes Competition (Amendment) Bill, 2022

The Lok Sabha passed amendments to the competition law which will empower the antitrust regulator to impose penalties on global turnovers of erring firms, expand the scope of penalties to entities collaborating in cartelisation, and regulate mergers and acquisitions based on the value of transactions with Rs 2,000 crore threshold. The Bill proposes harsher punishments on entities like Big Tech firms, and introduces intention to actively participate in assessing hub and spoke cartels.

NCP MP Supriya Sule with party MP from Lakshadweep Mohammad Faizal PP, at Parliament House complex in New Delhi on Wednesday. (PTI)

Mohammad Faizal’s disqualification from Lok Sabha revoked, but Supreme Court adds a new twist

MP Mohammad Faizal of Lakshadweep was restored his membership of Lok Sabha on the basis of a Kerala high court order, but Supreme Court decided to examine the correctness of the stay order. The MP was earlier sentenced to 10 years in jail in a 2009 attempt to murder case. The top court bench questioned if rules should be different between common people and lawmakers. NCP MP Supriya Sule and Faizal later met Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla.

A large part of the problem of hate speech will go away if politicians stop mixing politics with religion, the Supreme Court observed (HT File)

Can curb hate speech by not mixing politics, religion: SC

Supreme Court laments State's "impotence" in tackling hate speeches, which has caused "cracks in fraternity" and "intellectual depravement". It observed that mixing politics and religion has been the major problem, and that citizens should take a pledge to not vilify anyone. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta argued that instances of hate speech against Hindus are being selectively brought up before the court. The matter has been listed for April 20.

The Rajasthan high court on Wednesday acquitted all the accused in the 2008 serial Jaipur blast case (HT File)

Raj HC acquits all accused in 2008 Jaipur serial blast case

Rajasthan high court acquitted all 4 accused in 2008 Jaipur serial blast case, citing lack of evidence and "shoddy investigation" by ATS. 71 people were killed and 185 injured in the 9 ammonium nitrate bombs strapped to bicycles. The court directed DGP to take action against guilty officials and asked the chief secretary to monitor.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses the Summit for Democracy, via video conferencing on Wednesday (PTI)

Democracy not a system, but a spirit: PM Modi

At the US-led Summit for Democracy, PM Modi described democracy as a spirit and not just a structure. India, despite global challenges, is the fastest growing major economy due to its democratic framework and guiding philosophy of 'Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas'. He also highlighted India's initiatives such as 'Vaccine Maitri' and its response to the Covid-19 pandemic. The US has said it is watching the case of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who was disqualified as a Parliamentarian.

HT Image

Amritpal calls for Sikh conclave from hideout

Radical pro-Khalistan preacher Amritpal Singh issued a video message calling for sweeping protests led by Sikhism's highest priest, 11 days after a manhunt for him was launched. He suggested that the police were not just looking to arrest him, and appealed to Sikhs abroad to contribute to the Sarbat Khalsa. Hours later, Punjab's leader of opposition Partap Singh Bajwa said the video has debunked the government's claims that the police were close to apprehending him.

Siyaya was among the eight cheetahs that were translocated to India on September 17 in 2022. (Twitter | Bhupender Yadav)

Four cheetahs born in India after seven decades

A cheetah translocated from Namibia last September gave birth to four cubs in the Kuno National Park in Madhya Pradesh, the first of the big cats to be born in India in decades. Union environment minister Bhupendra Yadav tweeted pictures of the cubs and lauded PM Narendra Modi's leadership. The birth of the cubs is a positive sign for the intercontinental translocation of cheetahs and a special team is taking care of them. Another female cheetah, Asha, may also be pregnant.

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