ABP News: The Indian Army destroyed three terror camps in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), killing six to 10 Pakistani Army soldiers, said Army chief Rawat. Anchor Akhilesh Anand called it the “third surgical strike”.
Colonel Utkarsh Rathore (retired) brought up the human tragedy in border areas in winters — “Especially in winters, schools get closed and children are shifted to safer spaces, but the government must work towards finding a permanent remedy.”
Colonel Shivadan Singh (retired) called it a “refreezing” phase and said, “Pakistan is a rogue state — completely out of control and these measures are to stabilise the situation in Kashmir to nullify the side effects of the removal of Article 370.”
Zee News: The big debate about awarding the Bharat Ratna to Veer Savarkar returned on ‘Kya Kehta Hai India’.
Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Suneet Chopra said, “When an award is given to someone posthumously, it is not so much for the already dead person but for the people who are giving the award. Thus, there is actually no need for the award…”
Political analyst Nishant Verma asked, “Where was Savarkar post-independence?” He added that the BJP was only playing politics over Savarkar.
RSS ideologue Avanish Awasthi said that it is time to get over from the ‘one family’ (the Nehru-Gandhis) and focus on thousands of other people who sacrificed their lives for the nation, and “we are simply doing the same.”
Republic TV: Arnab Goswami’s `Sunday Debate’ focussed on ‘images’ which, he claimed, don’t let him sleep at night — of NCP leaders Praful Patel, Sharad Pawar and the PMC Bank depositors. The debate #BrazenNetas saw considerable shouting with a boxing-ring like bell for special effects. Goswami called out the ruling NDA government and the BJP for lack of action on the PMC bank scam.
In one instance, he cried, ‘shame shame’ when one viewer revealed that the income tax returns of ministers were paid by the government. Then he became dramatic: “I don’t want any other revolution, I just want a revolution where we are actually all equal,” he declared.
National spokesperson of the BJP Zafar Islam said, “The law and administration favours the common man and exposes those who are corrupt. We are cleaning the system.”
However, a PMC deposit holder Jitsu Sheth disagreed violently: “We’re on the 26th day, people are dying. But the government, which can solve this in seconds, is not trying.”
Political analyst Abdul Razack Khan said, “It is not BJP — it is Bharatiya Jhooti Party & Bharatiya Jumla Party.’’
NDTV 24×7: ‘We the People’ with Sarah Jacob was held in Gurugram — the topic: do local issues matter any more in elections? The question after the scrapping of Article 370, NRC and a Bharat Ratna for Hindutva idealogue V.D. Savarkar became poll issues in the Maharashtra and Haryana poll campaigns.
But here, participants spoke on local matters. Shubhra Puri, the founder of Gurgaon First, said, “Everyone calls Gurgaon the smart city, but you can’t be smart without being sustainable…we might finish out groundwater in a couple of years, air is highly compromised, our forests are being given away to real-estate development. One of the major issues in Gurgaon is lack of local governance.”
A young lady said, “If you talk about women’s safety, at that time (in 2013) Gurgaon was a horrible place in terms of safety. No woman wanted to stay in Gurgaon after 7 pm or travel alone after that time. But since 2013 until now, there has been a lot of development in Gurgaon and the situation in terms of safety has also improved. However, the scenario post 10 pm is almost as it was in 2013.”
On environmental concerns, Founder of I Am Gurgaon, Latika Thukral said, “Aravallis have all the water and the water recharge takes place in the Aravallis, pollution is at its peak and if we have more of these Cyber Hubs and more construction, this city will not be livable.”
Meanwhile, Vishal Sharma, political analyst, was more concerned with other things: “We will ensure that Veer Savarkar is given the Bharat Ratna and D.K. Shivakumar will go to jail.”
The Indian Army’s attack on four terror camps along the Line of Control, destroying three of them, is the lead item across mainstream newspapers, Monday, while voting in Maharashtra and Haryana also dominates front pages.
Indian Army attack: There is a significant difference in headlines of newspapers. The Hindu states, “3 PoK terror camps destroyed: Army chief”; Hindustan Times’ is straight: “Indian artillery targets 4 terror camps across LoC”; The Times of India emphasises the Army’s destructive attack and has a different figure of camps destroyed — “Army destroys 4 POK terror launch pads with artillery fire”; The Indian Express highlights Pakistan’s casualty — “6-10 Pak soldiers killed, terror infra hit severely: Army Chief”.
The newspapers attribute the news to the Army Chief: Hindu begins by saying “Army chief Gen. Bipin Rawat said that the army had taken retaliatory action”, which followed “definitive information of terrorists attempting infiltration from camps in Tangdhar and Keran districts”. “In the first significant escalation of hostilities…since Article 370”, writes Express, the Army responded to “unprovoked firing by Pakistan, leaving two Indian soldiers and a civilian dead”. HT provides the detail that the army used “155mm guns — the mainstay of the artillery firepower of the army” and “6-10 Pakistani soldiers and a dozen terrorists were killed”. Continuing with its dramatic vocabulary, TOI writes that the LOC “turned red-hot with heavy cross-border artillery duels since Saturday night”.
Maharashtra-Haryana elections: HT writes that, “voters in Maharashtra and Haryana will exercise their right to choose their representatives for the state legislative assemblies”.
Hindu emphasises the numbers — “Over 8.9 crore voters will decide the fate of 3,239 candidates in Maharashtra, while more than 1.8 crore people will choose from 1,169 candidates in Haryana.”
St Stephen’s professor death: “The body of a 27-year-old ad hoc assistant professor of Delhi University’s St Stephen’s College was found on railway tracks: in Delhi, reports HT. A few minutes earlier, “his mother was found hanging from a ceiling fan at their flat in Pitampura” (Hindu). TOI writes that he “jumped in front of a train after he had allegedly forced his mother to end her life”. A case of abetment to suicide was registered against them in Kerala and both were on anticipatory bail, it adds.
Others: “Leaders of the ruling YSR Congress Party have been accused of unleashing attacks on mediapersons who are seen to be critical of them, or of the state government,” reports Express. An FIR was registered against a YSRCP legislator and chief whip in the legislative assembly in the killing of a journalist who was “hacked to death” on 15 October.
Hindu carries a report on the economy and quotes Nobel Laureate Abhijit Banerjee, saying that “the government should consider reversing the recent corporate tax rate cuts and expand the PM KISAN scheme to include non-farmers”.
HT: The Maharashtra and Haryana elections Monday will be instrumental in determining governance, development index and the day-to-lives of citizens, writes HT. But more so, it will reflect “the state of politics and social churn” in the country. Both these BJP-ruled states were not the party’s “stronghold” before 2014.
Chief Ministers Devendra Fadnvas and Manohar Lal Khattar, backed by PM Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah, have emerged as strong leaders. Reasons for this include Modi’s appeal, the “discourse on nationalism; and the effectiveness of the central government’s welfare schemes” as well “the perception of integrity” the CMs enjoy. The Opposition’s collapse — Congress in Haryana and Maharashtra, and the Nationalist Congress Party in Maharashtra — has added to this. The BJP’s “coalition of non-dominant castes” will soon make it a “truly inclusive Hindu party” while the lack of Muslim political representation continues”, writes HT.
Hindu: It writes that the CBI chargesheet against former union minister P. Chidambaram, his son Karti and others doesn’t contain “new material” to add to the 2017’s INX Media foreign investment case. Apart from a Rs 9.96 lakh paid via cheque to a consultancy firm, there is “no evidence of anything amounting to a bribe”, writes Hindu.
Indrani Mukerjea, former INX Media director who is undergoing trial for the alleged murder of her daughter, claims Chidambaram asked her for quid pro quo in exchange for sorting out issues raised by the FIPB. But Peter Mukerjea, her ex-husband and murder co-accused, has not corroborated this. Those charge-sheeted need to answer why they allowed INX to “receive investment at premium value of the shares issued to foreign investors instead of their face value”. But these questions of policy cannot lead to credible prosecution unless a quid pro quo is established.