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Modi’s swearing-in ceremony one of the biggest functions in Rashtrapati Bhavan

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 Prime Minister-designate Narendra Modi’s swearing-in ceremony Monday will be one of the biggest such events held at Rashtrapati Bhavan with around 4,000 guests, including seven heads of government, attending.

Rashtrapati Bhavan has held ceremonies attended by 1,400-1,500 guests earlier.

Modi’s swearing-in ceremony will be an open air event at the forecourt of Rashtrapati Bhavan. A stage has been set up at the base of the steps, with hundreds of chairs placed in a semi-circle facing it for the ceremony, which shall be televised live.

Earlier, the swearing-in ceremonies were held at Ashoka Hall, with around a 400-500 restricted guest list, said Omita Paul, secretary to President Pranab Mukherjee, briefing media Sunday on the arrangements.

Only twice earlier have swearing-in ceremonies been held at the forecourt — of Chandrashekhar in 1990 and Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 1998 — where the guests numbered around 1,200-1,300, said Paul.

There is no word yet if Modi’s kin would be attending the ceremony, she said.

“It is a one of its kind function being held by Rashtrapati Bhavan,” said Paul.

“We have tried to take care of each detail. It was a huge logistical challenge for us,” she said, adding that they worked in tandem with the security personnel.

Monday’s guest list will include, besides the foreign leaders, foreign diplomats, members of the former council of ministers, constitutional heads, 777 MPs of both houses, chief ministers, governors and media persons. Some corporate leaders are also expected to attend the swearing in, she said.

Each of the ministers would be allowed to invite four guests, she added.

The ceremony, to begin at 6 p.m., would last approximately one hour and 10 minutes, said officials of Rashtrapati Bhavan, refusing to divulge the number of ministers expected to be sworn in.

Paul said President Mukherjee believes that Rashtrapati Bhavan belongs to the people and that there should be more such occasions to meet and interact with people. Mukherjee has taken several measures to make the presidential palace more accessible to the common man.

In view of security considerations, no bags and telephones will be allowed. 

Barring the VVIPs, who will be allowed to come in their cars, the other guests will have to avail of pick and drop facility. For those who are unable to walk in the vast expanse, around 12 horse-drawn buggies will be provided to ferry them. Guests are to be seated in their chairs by 5 p.m., after which the routes would be closed.

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Kanhaiya is an aberration, nationalists don’t accept it: Rajiv Pratap Rudy

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Kolkata: Describing Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union president Kanhaiya Kumar as an “aberration”, union minister and BJP MP Rajiv Pratap Rudy on Sunday said such an aberration will not be accepted at the cost of nationalism.

Interacting with media persons on the sidelines of a party event here, Rudy ridiculed the Left parties for using the media and universities to turn Kanhaiya Kumar — who was jailed on sedition charges but recently granted interim bail — into a “momentary hero”.

Using the media, universities and NGOs, the Leftists sided with anti-national sloganeers and managed to turn Kanhaiya into a hero for the time being, but the people of the country are aware of Leftists’ intentions, he said.

“Kanhaiya is an aberration and the nationalism and nationalists will not allow this aberration to be part of the country’s polity,” said Rudy.

Commenting on the demand for change in the sedition laws, Rudy said those who are clamouring intolerance were anti-nationals.

“Nationalism cannot be compromised at any cost and it cannot be brought to on par with the debate of intolerance. When people are talking of breaking the country, when people are raising slogans against the country, this debate of intolerance is nothing but anti-nationalism,” said the union Minister of state for skill development and parliamentary affairs.

“It is for the court to decide whether a change needs in the sedition laws, but there cannot be any compromise when your actions are seditious,” he said.

Addressing a seminar of the party’s state intellectual cell, Rudy said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was the only political party in the country whose ideals are not personality-based.

“The chief character of almost all the parties, be it south India or the east, be it the Samajwadi Party or the Congress, their ideals are based on a certain personality, but the BJP’s soul is country, nationalism,” he said.

Enumerating the various developmental schemes undertaken by Narendra Modi-led government at the Centre, Rudy called upon the party’s intellectual cell to endeavour for bringing the BJP in power in West Bengal.

(IANS)

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One dead, two hurt on Scorsese film set

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Taipei:  One person died and two others were injured Thursday while preparing to film the movie “Silence”, the latest project of US filmmaker Martin Scorsese, in Taiwan, regional authorities reported.

According to the Taipei City Construction Management Office, the accident took place at the city’s Culture and Movie Centre when temporary wooden scaffolding fell on three Taiwanese workers.

The victims, between 40 and 50 years of age, were immediately transferred to a nearby hospital where one was declared dead on arrival after cardio-pulmonary resuscitation proved fruitless, a spokesperson from the construction office told the press.

Scorsese is in Taiwan to prepare for shooting scenes for the historical drama.

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Akshay-Twinkle Complete 14 Years Of Marriage

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Akshay-Twinkle Complete 14 Years Of Marriage

Akshay-Twinkle Complete 14 Years Of Marriage

Akshay Kumar and Twinkle Khanna completed 14 years of marriage On January 17th.

The two tied the knot on January 17, 2001. Akshay posted a cutesy picture of him and Twinkle, giving it an adorable caption that read, “After 14 years of listening to the same old jokes of @mrsfunnybones I still wait to hear more ! #happyanniversary.” Twinkle is known as Mrs Funny Bones after the popular pen name under which writes her blogs for The Times of India. Here’s wishing the lovely couple a happy anniversary and many more years of togetherness.

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