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Constituency Watch: Will Yusuf Pathan Hit a Six at Adhir Ranjan’s Home Pitch in Baharampur?

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Constituency Watch: Can Yusuf Pathan hit a six at Adhir Ranjan's home pitch Baharampur?

A key contest is on the anvil in the Baharampur Lok Sabha constituency in West Bengal’s Murshidabad district, where five-time sitting Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Choudhury is facing hurdles and advantages in retaining his seat. The surprise candidate fielded by Trinamool Congress is former India cricketer Yusuf Pathan.

The main aim of the Trinamool leadership in Baharampur is believed to be defeating Choudhury rather than ensuring the victory of the party candidate. Choudhury has claimed that the Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee imported a celebrity candidate from Gujarat to divide the minority votes, which have always been in Congress’ favor.

Yusuf Pathan’s nomination has evoked infighting in the Trinamool leadership in Murshidabad, with many leaders threatening to abstain from campaigning. Trinamool MLA Humayun Kabir had initially expressed discontent with Pathan’s nomination but later agreed to campaign for him after top party leadership intervention.

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The Left Front, especially the CPI(M), is supporting Choudhury in Baharampur, giving him an advantage. The BJP’s candidate, Nirmal Kumar Saha, a popular medical practitioner with a background in the RSS, admits the challenge will be tough against Choudhury, who has had unquestionable popularity among the voters in Baharampur since 1999.

In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Choudhury won by a margin of 80,000 votes. Shah, the BJP candidate, acknowledges the tough contest against Choudhury but vows to reach out to voters with the message of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s development works.

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Campaigning ends for first phase of elections in Uttar Pradesh today

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Campaigning to end for first phase elections in UP today

Lucknow, April 17 – Campaigning on eight seats set for the first phase of elections in Uttar Pradesh on April 19 will come to a close today at 5 p.m. The key contenders in this phase are the Bharatiya Janata Party-led NDA, the Samajwadi Party-led INDIA bloc, and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP). The seats up for grabs are Saharanpur, Bijnore, Kairana, Muzaffarnagar, Nagina, Moradabad, Rampur, and Pilibhit.

In this phase, the Congress will be campaigning only in Saharanpur, with a roadshow led by party General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra in support of candidate Imran Masood. This phase sees a three-cornered contest among the BJP, SP, and BSP, with each party intensifying its efforts to win over voters in the crucial constituencies.

The BJP was successful in securing three seats in the first phase in 2019, while the SP won two and the BSP three. The SP had previously contested in alliance with the BSP in the 2019 elections, but this time around, parties have formed new alliances and adopted fresh strategies to maximize their chances of victory.

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Key candidates in this phase include Jitin Prasada in Pilibhit, Union Minister Sanjeev Balyan seeking a third term in Muzaffarnagar, and Azad Samaj Party chief Chandra Shekhar Azad in Nagina. The absence of Azam Khan, a prominent figure for the SP currently in jail, has not stopped him from influencing the elections in Rampur and Moradabad.

While the BJP, SP, and BSP have actively campaigned in the region, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, BSP President Mayawati, and other leaders have been addressing rallies and holding meetings to garner support for their respective candidates. As the campaign comes to a close, all eyes are now on the voters in these key constituencies in Uttar Pradesh.

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When Arjuna Faces Achilles Unarmed: The Meeting of Two Warriors in “He-Rose”

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'He-Rose': When Arjuna meets Achilles, and both are unarmed...

New Delhi, April 17 (IANS) – The theatre production ‘He-Rose’ challenges conventional notions of heroism by drawing parallels between iconic figures such as Arjuna from the Mahabharata and Achilles from the Iliad. Presented by The Cultural French network in India and NSD, the play is a collaborative effort between ENSATT and Adishakti Laboratory premiering in Chandigarh.

The play, written by Nimmy Raphel and directed by Vinay Kumar, explores the tragic saga of two mythological heroes, Arjuna and Achilles. Kumar, emphasizing the futility of war, discusses the interplay between vulnerability and courage in the characters, highlighting their second thoughts about fighting due to an encounter with their feminine side.

The production delves into the archetypes brought out by war, showcasing how myths hold significant importance in Indian culture as opposed to European culture. Both Arjuna and Achilles encounter non-heterosexual behavior, leading them to question the morality and brutality of warfare. The play focuses primarily on these two characters, shedding light on the impact of war on humanity and the perception of heroism.

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Nimmy Raphel, the writer of the play, highlights the need to re-look at our notions of heroes and the understanding of human progress. She emphasizes the role of women in war and discusses the impact of decision-making on them. Raphel stresses the importance of storytelling in initiating debates about human civilization and the responsibility of artists in shaping societal perspectives.

As ‘He-Rose’ unfolds on stage, it invites audiences to contemplate the complexities of heroism and the implications of war on humanity. With a blend of Indian and European influences, the play promises to challenge traditional narratives and provoke thought on the nature of courage and vulnerability in the face of conflict.

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Nagpur Constituency Watch: Nitin Gadkari’s ‘Vikas’ vs Congress’ Vikas Thakre

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Constituency Watch: It's Nitin Gadkari's 'Vikas' vs Congress' Vikas Thakre in Nagpur

The BJP is relying on development brought in by Union Minister Nitin Gadkari in Maharashtra’s Nagpur constituency, while the Congress is banking on Vikas Thakre’s contacts. The campaign in Nagpur is set to end on Wednesday with polling on April 19.

Union Minister Gadkari, pitted against Congress nominee Vikas Thakre, is banking on his development initiatives and PM Modi’s support. Thakre, a sitting MLA, is emphasizing on Congress’ guarantees and arguing for a broader definition of development.

Gadkari benefits from strong organizational support, Deputy CM Fadnavis’ participation, RSS activists, and his public projects. However, he faces opposition to infrastructure development, public protests, and job opportunities concerns.

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Congress nominee Vikas Thakre is leveraging his rise from corporator to legislator, public image, and wide network. He faces challenges of organizational constraints and lack of a strong poll machinery compared to the BJP.

Gadkari hopes for a victory based on development policies, while Thakre aims to gain support from those affected by inflation, unemployment, and farmers’ distress. The election outcome in Nagpur remains uncertain as both candidates make their final appeals to voters.

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