Around 500 influencers from various fields are being roped in by the government for the “Jan Andolan” launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for Covid-19-appropriate behaviour ahead of the festive season. Some prominent names include actors Amitabh Bachchan, Karthik Aaryan and Rajkummar Rao, sportspersons Sania Mirza, Dutee Chand and Saina Nehwal, and industrialists Uday Kotak and T V Narendran.
The Congress’s central election committee will meet on Wednesday to finalise candidates for Bihar elections. The party has already declared 21 names. But the Congress is still negotiating with the RJD over some 20 seats as there are complaints in the party that the RJD has given difficult seats. Amid growing resentment in the party, reports that three top Congress leaders — state chief Madan Mohan Jha, CLP leader Sadanand Singh and Rajya Sabha MP Akhilesh Prasad Singh — have been removed from the screening committee because of complaints surprised many. Singh, interestingly, is not a member of the screening committee while the other two are. Committee chairman Avinash Pande had to issue a denial.
Cutting across party lines, parliamentarians from Kerala continued to mount pressure on the Centre to ensure the release of Siddique Kappan, a journalist from the state who was arrested by UP Police and booked under UAPA. Several MPs have already written to the Prime Minister in this connection. CPM Rajya Sabha MP Elamaram Kareem on Monday met Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises Minister Prakash Javadekar over a PSU-related issue. Since Javadekar also handles the Information and Broadcasting portfolio, Kareem drew his attention to Kappan. Kareem said Javadekar told him he would get in touch with the UP government and Home Minister after studying the issue.
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