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News18 Daybreak | BJP to Announce Pre-Poll Alliance with AIADMK and Other Stories You Need to Watch Out For

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Updated:February 19, 2019, 9:29 AM IST
News18 Daybreak | BJP to Announce Pre-Poll Alliance with AIADMK and Other Stories You Need to Watch Out For
File photo of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister E Palaniswami and his deputy O Panneerselvam ( TV Grab).

What to Watch Out For

BJP to announce alliance with AIADMK in Tamil Nadu after firming ties with Shiv Sena

After Bharatiya Janata Party confirmed its alliance with the Shiv Sena in Maharashtra, the party is now likely to announce its alliance with AIADMK in Tamil Nadu on Tuesday.

Last week BJP’s election-in-charge Piyush Goyal held midnight parleys with chief minister EK Palaniswami and his deputy O Panneerselvam where the alliance and the seat-sharing arrangement was decided.

In Tamil Nadu: Following the talks last Thursday, News18 had reported that while the deal is finalised, seat-sharing negotiations are still underway as sources say the BJP wants to contest at least 8 seats this time around.

The DMDK, led by Vijayakanth, Tamil Maanila Congress led by GK Vasan, and two other regional parties are also likely to be part of the alliance.

The BJP had planned a series of visits by top leaders such as Nitin Gadkari and others to meet with the party cadre, industry groups and social groups but they are likely to be rescheduled after the terrorist attack in Pulwama on Thursday.

Making Amends: Meanwhile, in Maharashtra it seems like the Shiv Sena and the BJP have decided to bury the hatchet and contest the Lok Sabha polls and the state assembly elections together. CM Devendra Fadnavis with BJP President Amit Shah and Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray announced in a press conference on Monday that Sena will fight on 23 seats and the BJP will contest on 25 seats for the upcoming polls.

The announcement comes following months of bickering between the two parties as the Sena has been publicly disagreed with its allied party on various issues. Just last week, Sena leader Sanjay Raut paid a surprise visit to Chandrababu Naidu's dharna in Delhi pressing for special status for Andhra Pradesh. Naidu's dharna was attended by opposition leaders, including Congress chief Rahul Gandhi.

Southward-bound: However, even with the party firming up on alliances with Shiv Sena and AIADMK, it has yet to find allies in the states of Karnataka, Kerala, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. How will this affect the party’s chances in the southern states, especially in Karnataka where it has the most number of seats? Read Stacy Pereira and Deepa Balakrishnan’s analysis.

India and Pakistan gear up for second day of Kulbhushan Yadav's trial hearing, day after Pulwama attack mastermind killed

Amid rising tensions over the Pulwama attack, India and Pakistan have now locked horns in the International Court of Justice in the ongoing public hearing of the Kulbhushan Jadhav case.

Jadhav, who has remained a naval officer in India, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of espionage. The petitioner, India, on Monday had argued that Pakistani military court "hopelessly failed" to satisfy even the minimum standards of due process and requested the ICJ at the Hague to declare it “unlawful”. The hearing will continue on for its second day today.

Meanwhile, two of the Jaish-e-Mohammad militants, including the commander who masterminded Thursday’s terror attack on a CRPF convoy in Pulwama, were killed in an encounter in the Pinglan area, in which four army personnel and a civilian also died. The slain terrorists were identified as Kamran, a Pakistani national and top commander of the Jaish, and Hilal Ahmad, a local recruited by the terror group, an official said. Amongst the casualties in the gunfight were also army personnel major Vibhuti Shankar Dhoundiyal, hawaldar Sheo Ram, sepoy Hari Singh and sepoy Ajay Kumar of the 55 Rashtriya Rifles. The security operation comes days after the 40 CRPF personnel were killed when a suicide bomber of the Pakistan-based terror outfit, Jaish-e-Mohammad, blew up an explosive-laden vehicle.

Jaish-e-Mohammad commander Kamran (left) and local militant Hilal.

Saudi Prince MBS to arrive in New Delhi today following Pakistan visit

The Saudi Prince Mohammed bin Salman is slated to arrive in New Delhi last on Tuesday after visiting Pakistan. On Monday, the Prince vowed to try to "de-escalate tensions between India and Pakistan in the wake of the deadly terror attack in Pulwama by Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad.

Popularly known as MBS, the Prince will be given a ceremonial welcome at Rashtrapati Bhavan on Wednesday after which Prime Minister Narendra Modi will host him at lunch and President Ram Nath Kovind will host an official banquet.

The Saudi Arabian prince made the headlines yesterday after he inked at least seven MoUs and agreement to make investments of worth USD 20 billion in Pakistan.

RBI to pay Rs 28,000 crore as Interim Dividend to govt for second successive year

The Reserve Bank will pay an interim dividend of Rs 28,000 crore to the government, a move that will help the Centre keep fiscal deficit in check. The announcement on Monday came after the bank's Central Board meeting, which was addressed by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. RBI had given Rs 30,663 crore as dividend to the government in 2017-18. In his address to the Board, Jaitley also outlined various reforms and policy measures taken by the government over the last four years and the effects thereof.

What You May Have Missed

Sidhu loses his cool after Akali Dal MLAs wave photos of his Pakistan visit in Punjab Assembly

Punjab finance minister Manpreet Badal on Monday was forced to cut short his budget presentation in the assembly on Monday due to protests by Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) leaders over cabinet minister Navjot Singh Sidhu’s remarks on the Pulwama attack. SAD MLAs trooped into the Well of the House demanding the resignation of the Congress leader, who had said a country (Pakistan) can’t be blamed for the actions of a few individuals. Sidhu then entered into a verbal duel with SAD leader Bikram Majithia even as the speaker asked them not to disrupt the Question Hour.

Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh on Monday came to Sidhu's defence said everyone has the right to speak their mind. "Sidhu was a cricketer while I was a soldier, and both have different viewpoints on things," he was quoted as saying by news agency IANS.

Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu and Akali leader Bikram Singh Majithia locked in an ugly spat in assembly.

Priyadarshini Scindia campaigning in Guna sets off buzz on her political plunge

With husband Jyotiraditya Scindia working on the Congress poll campaign in western Uttar Pradesh, wife Priyadarshini Raje Scindia began a nine-day public campaign on Monday in Guna, the parliamentary constituency of her husband, fuelling speculation of her taking a possible political plunge in the forthcoming general elections. Priyadarshini met several women workers at the booth level on day one of campaigning and is expected to meet female workers of the block level at the block level. Although she was seen seeking votes for her husband, several party leaders have pitched for her candidature in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, especially since the recent and much-awaited entry of Congress-in-charge of UP east Priyanka Gandhi.

News18 Elections Lab: Ahead of 2019 polls, electoral bonds make political funding for parties all the more opaque

Reforming the Indian electoral process by bringing in more transparency in political funding has been a demand for a long time.

However, as the 17th Lok Sabha elections for 2019 are due in about three months, questions loom large about how political funding received through unknown sources will affect the polling? Read Ghazanfar Abbas’ analysis in the fifth instalment of Paisa, Polls and Politics to find out.

US sanctions help Venezuelan Oil find its way into Indian market

Venezuela's oil exports have tapered off and shifted towards India with the new US sanctions beginning on January 28. The state-run oil company PDVSA is now seeking to replace deliveries to the United States and Europe that were disrupted by payment restrictions. The South American nation is turning its focus to cash-paying buyers, especially in India, its second-largest customer after the United States, amid US sanctions designed to undercut financial support for Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. The US administration, who had also recognized Opposition leader Juan Guaido’s proclamation as interim president. had designed the sanctions to bar Maduro's access to oil revenue, which will help keep his government afloat.

West Bengal CM takes dig at Modi govt over Pulwama terror attack

West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee on Monday lambasted the Modi government over the Pulwama attack, asking the Centre why it ignored intelligence reports and let the CRPF convoy pass through the area where the attack took place. "Why did the Centre not do anything to stop Pakistanis from carrying out such attacks in all these years. Only when an election is knocking at the door, you think of starting a shadow war?" she asked. Attacking the government further, the CM said that she has doubts on why the incident occurred before elections and why no action was taken against Pakistan in the last five years.

On Reel

With the spectre of unseasonal rain and irregular weather patterns looming large over these fields, News18 finds out how farmers are preparing for the rest of the Rabi season especially when scientists believe the frequency and intensity of western disturbances, which bring rain and snow in the winter, has increased.

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