Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Konijeti Rosaiah (77) stepped down on Wednesday citing advanced age and indifferent health, barely hours before the Congresss Legislature Party was to meet (at 6.30 pm) in the evening.
Rosaiah announced his resignation at a scheduled press conference at the Secretariat at 1.30 pm, taking everyone by surprise.
“I have decided to resign; I am submitting my resignation to the state Governor and I will request him to accept it immediately,”
“I got the job in the fag end of life and I could not withstand the high pressure that goes with it.I am resigning on my own,” he said and added that “there are no political reasons behind it”. He said that despite various ups and downs and despite facing several calamities, both natural and man-made, he strived his best to rule the state focusing on development and welfare of the people.
He expressed his sincere thanks to his ministerial colleagues, officials and other well-wishers for extending their unstinted support during his tenure.
Rosaiah pointed out that he had assumed the responsibility as the Chief Minister at a crucial juncture after the unexpected and tragic demise of Dr Y S Rajasekhara Reddy. He said that as a disciplined soldier of the Congress party he would continue to extend his services to the organization in whatever capacity the High Command deemed fit.
The resignation of Rosaiah was on the cards after he was given a dressing down by the central leadership on Tuesday for not doing enough to counter the malicious propaganda that was telecast by the Sakshi TV channel.
After the press conference, Rosaiah drove to the Raj Bhavan and submitted his resignation to Governor ESL Narasimham requesting him to accept it at the earliest and relieve him. From the Raj Bhavan he left for his Sanathnagar residence.
Meanwhile, Congress circles said that Finance Minister and Congress’ chief trouble shooter Pranab Mukherjee and Andhra Pradesh in charge Veerappa Moily will be attending the CLP meeting.
The meeting is expected to pass three resolutions; one leaving the issue of new CLP leader to Congress president Sonia Gandhi, another condemning the TV channel for its systematic and virulent campaign against the Congress party and third re-affirming the state units abiding faith on Sonia Gandhi’s leadership.
Pakistani Anti-graft body wants travel ban on Nawaz Sharif, kin
Pakistan’s anti-corruption watchdog has asked authorities to place ousted premier Nawaz Sharif, his daughter and son-in-law on the Exit Control List to prevent them from leaving the country.
The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) sent a formal request to the ministry of interior. The interior ministry officials confirmed that the NAB wrote that names of Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Capt (retd) Muhammad Safdar should be put on the Exit Control List (ECL), which listed individuals not allowed to leave Pakistan.
The NAB argued that as the trial of the three nears its conclusion, it is feared that they would leave the country.
Earlier, a similar request to place name of finance minister Ishaq Dar on ECL was not accepted, allowing him to go to London and never return.
Sharif, 68, and his family this week filed an application with the accountability court seeking a fortnight’s exemption from personal appearance from February 19 onwards to let them go to London to see Sharif’s ailing wife. Three cases were filed against Sharif and his family last year, including Avenfield properties, Azizia & Hill Metal Establishment, and Flagship Investments.
Maryam and Safdar are accused only in Avenfield properties case. The NAB had filed two supplementary references against Sharif, his sons Hasan and Hussain regarding Al-Azizia Steel Mills & Hill Metal Establishment and Flagship Investment cases.
Pakistan “breaches obligations’ on nuclear arms reduction, UN court told
The Hague: Pakistan is violating its “obligations” to the international community by failing to reduce its nuclear arsenal, the Marshall Islands told the UN’s highest court on Tuesday.
The small Pacific Island nation is this week launching three unusual cases against India, Pakistan and Britain before the International Court of Justice.
Majuro wants to put a new spotlight on the global nuclear threat, its lawyers said yesterday, by using its own experience with massive US-led nuclear tests in the 1940s and 1950s.
“Pakistan is in breach of its obligations owed to the international community as a whole,” when it comes to reducing its nuclear stockpile, said Nicholas Grief, one of the island nation’s lawyers.
DeBrum warned that even a “limited nuclear war” involving the two countries would “threaten the existence” of his island nation people.
Pakistan and India have fought three wars since independence from Britain in 1947, two of them over the disputed Himalayan territory of Kashmir.
In 1998, the rival neighbours both demonstrated nuclear weapons capability.
The ICJ’s judges are holding hearings for the next week and a half to decide whether it is competent to hear the lawsuits brought against India and Pakistan — neither of which have signed the 1968 nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
A third hearing against Britain — which has signed the NPT — scheduled to start on Wednesday will be devoted to “preliminary objections” raised by London.
The Marshalls initially sought to bring a case against nine countries it said possessed nuclear arms: Britain, China, France, India, Israel, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia and the United States.
Israel has never admitted to having nuclear weapons.
But the Hague-based ICJ, set up in 1945 to rule in disputes between states, has only admitted three cases against Britain, India and Pakistan, because they have accepted the ICJ’s compulsory jurisdiction.
Pakistan’s lawyers did not attend Tuesday’s hearings.
It did however file a counter-claim against Majuro’s allegations saying “the court has no jurisdiction to deal with the application” and insisting that the case is “not admissible”, said ICJ President Ronny Abraham.
Bangladesh to drop Islam as official religion following attacks on Hindus
New Delhi: Bangladesh is likely to drop Islam as its official religion following a series of attacks on people from other faiths in the country. The country’s Supreme Court is hearing a plea challenging the status of the official religion of the country to Islam.
Bangladesh, which was declared a secular country after its formation in 1971, was declared an Islamic country following a constitutional amendment in 1988.
According to a report in the Daily Mail, the plea has challenged the declaration of Islam as the national religion of the country.
The move is being supported by leaders from the minority communities like Hindus, Christians and Muslim minority Shiites.
Bangladesh has 90 per cent of Muslims, 8 per cent Hindus and remaining constitutes Christians and Muslim minority Shiites.
In last month, a Hindu priest was hacked to death following an attack on a temple in Panchgarh district. Two others were seriously injured in the attack. There have been several lethal attacks on writers and bloggers.
According to a report in the Independent, Islamist groups Jumatul Mujahedeen Bangladesh and Ansarullah Bangla Team are believed to have carried out at least seven attacks on foreign and minority people in Bangladesh in the past year.