HYDERABAD MONDAY SEPTEMBER 25, 2023 `9.00 PAGES 14 LATE CITY EDITION ROWING, SHOOTING MEDALS On a day when China prevailed over India in a number of close contests, the country’s rowers and shooters opened the medal count hours after the start of the Hangzhou Asian Games. A look at how Sunday went RAMITA BAGS TWO MEDALS In shooting, Ramita Jindal upstaged Mehuli Ghosh as the former won an individual bronze in the women’s 10m air rifle event. Before the individual final, the duo, in the company of Ashi Chouksey, won a silver in team event DOMINATING PERFORMANCE Two-time world champion, Nikhat Zareen, came through a big test as she beat Vietnam’s Nguyen Thi Tam in the first round of the 50kg category. The two had met in the final of the Worlds earlier this year | P13 The rowing team BOAT CLUB: WATER-SHED MOMENT One of the most gruelling of sports was always expected to open India’s tally and so it proved with India winning two silvers and a bronze in the picturesque setting of the Fuyang Water Sports Centre As expected, China dominated the water but the Indians, most of them who were introduced to the sport after joining the Army, put up a creditable show Five MEDALS IS WHAT INDIA FINISHED WITH ON THE OPENING DAY CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA ■ BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOGGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR ■ KALABURAGI NIA looks to seize assets of 19 other fugitive Khalistanis HARPREET BAJWA & YESHI SELI @ Chandigarh/New Delhi In the group photo, Ramnath Goenka Sahithya Samman awardees Perumal Murugan (fifth from left), Anirudh Kanisetti (extreme right) and Devika Rege (third from left) with Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik (fourth from right), TNIE CMD Manoj Kumar Sonthalia (extreme left), TNIE CEO Lakshmi Menon (second from left), TNIE Editor Santwana Bhattacharya (fourth from left), TNIE Editorial Director Prabhu Chawla (third from right) and author and economist Bibek Debroy, at the Odisha Literary Festival in Bhubaneswar on Sunday. Left: Devika Rege receiving the Best Fiction trophy from TNIE CMD Manoj Kumar Sonthalia. Right: Perumal Murugan receiving the citation in the Literary Excellence category from Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik | DEBADATTA MALLICK Ramnath Goenka Sahithya Samman launched PERUMAL MURUGAN, ANIRUDH KANISETTI & DEVIKA REGE GET INAUGURAL AWARDS INSTITUTED BY THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS B I J O Y P R A D H A N @ Bhubaneswar AFTER more than a decade of the remarkable journey of Odisha Literary Festival (OLF), the one-of-its-kind in Eastern India, The New Indian Express Group on Sunday added another feather to its cap by launching the first edition of literary awards in the memory of its legendary founder and freedom fighter Ramnath Goenka. Announcing the Ramnath Goenka Sahithya Samman (RGSS) in the presence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, chairman and managing director of TNIE Group Manoj Ku- INSIDE mar Sonthalia said the award has been instituted to celebrate and honour literary excellence among both veterans and debutants. As chief guest of the ceremony Naveen present, ed the RGSS award for literary excellence to celebrated Tamil writer Perumal Murugan for his contribution to Indian literature. Murugan was presented with a signature trophy , a cash award of `2 lakh and a citation. The award for Best Non-Fiction writing went to Anirudh Kanisetti for his work, Lords of the Deccan: Southern India from the Chalukyas to the Cholas, while Devika Rege was chosen for her novel Quarterlife in the Best Fiction category Both . were presented the RGSS trophy `1 lakh cash prize , each along with citations. The awardees were chosen by a distinguished jury headed by noted author and chairman of the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister, Bibek Debroy . Elaborating on the institution of the RGSS award, Sonthalia said, “The trophy has a legacy It was personally . chosen by Ramnathji for excellence in journalism and it is a fortunate stroke of serendipity that we are here in Bhubhaneshwar and its motif is inspired by the Sun Temple at Konark.” The Sun, guiding the vehicle giving it a sense of direction and providing the moving force symbolises continuous movement of time. The motif thus suggests that a writer too functions with a sense of mission, direction and purpose, dispelling the darkness of ignorance and enlightening the readers, he said. CONTINUED ON: P7 LAL DED IS KASHMIRIYAT, SHARED CULTURE OF HINDUS, MUSLIMS: VASISHT P7 Discontent brews among BC Cong leaders B K A R T H E E K @ Hyderabad DISILLUSIONED over the shortlisting of candidates, Telangana Congress BC leaders have decided to meet the party leadership and air their grievances. This comes in light of election strategist Sunil Kanugolu’s survey reports, which indicate that only 26 BC candidates are under consideration for tickets from 119 constituencies. This falls short of the promise made by the party to allocate at least 34 seats to BCs in the upcoming Assembly elections. The BC leaders are demanding the implementation of social justice within the party and are reiterating the slogan “Jitni Abadi, Utna Haq” (rights are based on proportional representation). In the 2018 and 2014 Assembly elections, the Congress had fielded 33 and 26 BC candidates, respectively. BC leaders are concer ned that this number may further decrease in the upcoming elections, all due to survey reports. They have been questioning the methodology employed by Sunil’s team to evaluate potential candidates within the party They feel that their voices . are being suppressed under the guise of these surveys. On Sunday, Telangana Congress BC leaders, who aspire to secure MLA tickets, convened a meeting at Gandhi Bhavan. This gathering was attended by TPCC campaign committee chairman Madhu Yashki Goud, along with other senior leaders such as V Hanumantha Rao, Ponnam Prabhakar, B Mahesh Kumar Goud, Ponnala Lakshmaiah and Cheruku Sudhakar. It is learnt that based on a report from Sunil’s team, the party is considering declining a ticket to even the seniors like Lakshmaiah, a six-time MLA and former PCC president. Party members are surprisied by how a seasoned leader like him could be deemed less suitable than a relative newcomer like Kommuri Pratap Reddy . CONTINUED ON P4 To meet Kharge, Sonia Madhu Yashki said they would seek appointments with AICC president Mallikarjuna Kharge, Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, to demand that the party fulfil its commitment of allocating 34 seats to BC community leaders 11-yr-old’s library mission grabs PM Modi’s attention Winning MP & C’garh, probable victory in TS, close contest in Raj: Rahul N A V YA PA R V AT H Y @ Hyderabad P R E E T H A N A I R @ New Delhi A student of Class 7 at the Hyderabad Public School in Begumpet, Akarshana Sathish, received appreciation from Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his Mann ki Baat programme on Sunday for her efforts to instil a love for reading among children. She collected second-hand books from her neighbours, classmates and family members to establish five libraries in the city and two in Tamil Nadu. “It’s a dream come true,” said 11-year-old Akarshana. Her journey began when, in 2021, she visited the MNJ children’s cancer hospital to distribute food. Some patients there expressed a desire for colouring books to pass their time. Encouraged by her parents — Sathish Nair and Pravitha Nair — she gathered 2,000 secondhand books from people in her community in just three days. Fast forward two years and her libraries collectively house an impressive 4,746 books. During his radio programme, the prime minister lauded young Akarshana’s dedication to shaping the future of children and deemed her an inspiration to many. Her work has also garnered recognition from WITH the crucial assembly elections just a few months away Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on , Sunday said his party will “certainly win Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, probably win Telangana, and there is a ‘very close’ contest in Rajasthan”. Speaking at a media conclave here, he claimed this is also the BJP’s internal assessment, adding that the saffron party is “in for a surprise in 2024 elections” as the opposition bloc INDIA will emerge victorious. Reiterating his demand for a nationwide caste census, the former Congress chief said the BJP is indulging ‘diversonary tactics’ to take attention away from the demand for a caste census. He was referring to the row over BJP MP Ramesh Bidhuri’s derogatory remarks against BSP leader Danish Ali in Lok Sabha. The country is facing issues such as concentration of wealth, huge inequality in wealth, massive unemployment, huge unfairness towards the lower caste, OBCs, and tribal communities, and price rise, he said. Gandhi added that the Congress learnt an important lesson in Karnataka that the BJP wins elections by “distracting and not allowing us to construct our narrative, and so we fought the polls constructing our party’s narrative”. He further said now the Congress party is controlling the narrative in Telangana, Chhattisgarh and other states with a positive agenda, and the BJP is nowhere to be seen. He said INDIA bloc offers a great deal of flexibility among the opposition leaders. Akarshana Sathish local politicians. Notably, her latest library at the Government High School in Sanath Nagar was inaugurated by Animal Husbandry and Fisheries Minister Talasani Srinivas Yadav. Prior to selecting books for each library, Akarshana conducts thorough research to ensure they align with the location’s needs and potential readers. Her preference leans toward books that offer general knowledge or convey moral lessons. She even donates her own books to the cause. She shares heartwarming stories of children who, once reluctant readers, now proudly call themselves bookworms. “Books are really good friends of ours,” she comCONTINUED ON P2 mented. Naveen gives PM 8 on 10 B I J A U C H A K I @ Bhubaneswar CHIEF Minister Naveen Patnaik on Sunday heaped fulsome praise on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, rating him eight out of 10 in performance over the last nine years. In a free-wheeling interview with TNIE Editorial Director Prabhu Chawla at the Odisha Literary Festival 2023 here, Naveen highly appreciated the Prime Minister’s performance in foreign policy and other matters. “I will give eight out of 10 points to the prime minister for what he has done for the country he said. To a question on his performance ,” in domestic matters, Naveen said Modi has helped reduce corruption. “There is less corruption in this government,” he stated. Replying to a question on his government’s relationship with the NDA at the Centre, he said the state has cordial relations as it wants development. “And, it is important to have the Centre as a partner in that development,” he added. CINEMA IS COLLABORATIVE ART, SAYS HANSAL MEHTA P7 A day after confiscating two properties of Canada-based Gurpatwant Singh Pannu, controller of the banned Sikh For Justice (SFJ), the Centre is learnt to be exploring options to seize assets belonging to 19 other fugitive Khalistani terrorists under the Unlawful Act iv i t i e s P r e ve n t i o n A c t (UAPA). The government could also revoke their Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) cards to prevent them from entering the country. Intelligence sources said the government might invoke Section 33(5) of the UAPA to confiscate their properties. It is part of the effort to stifle their finances and prevent the Khalistanis from using terror funds against India. If and when it happens, it could be India’s strongest-ever action against these fugitives. The National Investigation Agency on Sunday reportedly put out a list of 19 fugitive Khalistani extremists who are residents of the UK, the US, Canada, Dubai and Pakistan, among other countries, whose properties are likely to be confiscated.
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