Indira Gandhi award for green cru­sader Bhatt

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times City - Vi­raj Desh­pande, Bal­want Dhage and Vaib­hav Gan­japure, TNN

New Delhi: Noted en­vi­ron­men­tal­ist and so­cial ac­tivist Chandi Prasad Bhatt has been awarded the Indira Gandhi Award for Na­tional In­te­gra­tion for the years 2017 and 2018.

The award was in­sti­tuted by Congress in the mem­ory of the former PM and it would be pre­sented on Oc­to­ber 31.

“The 31st Indira Gandhi Award for Na­tional In­te­gra­tion for the year 2017 and 2018 has been awarded to Chandi Prasad Bhatt for his ser­vices in pro­mot­ing and pre­serv­ing na­tional in­te­gra­tion in the coun­try,” a state­ment from the party said.

This award con­sists of a ci­ta­tion and Rs 10 lakh in cash to be given to the awardee by chair­per­son So­nia Gandhi, the Congress pres­i­dent. It would be pre­sented on Oc­to­ber 31, the day former prime min­is­ter Indira Gandhi was killed. Nag­pur: Wardha-based Ma­hatma Gandhi In­ter­na­tional Hindi Univer­sity ) has ex­pelled six Dalit and OBC stu­dents for al­leged “vi­o­la­tion of model code of con­duct” and “in­ter­fer­ence in the ad­min­is­tra­tive process”. The var­sity took ac­tion against the six on Wed­nes­day af­ter a group of stu­dents held an ‘anti-gov­ern­ment’ protest on the cam­pus even though they were de­nied per­mis­sion for the same.

On Oc­to­ber 5, a group or­gan­ised a pro­gramme to pen a let­ter to Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi over the “spate of mob-lynch­ing in­ci­dents in the coun­try, ab­ro­ga­tion of Ar­ti­cle 370, and ris­ing rate of crimes against women, in­clud­ing rapes, where politi­cians be­long­ing to the rul­ing party are al­legedly shielded”.

The stu­dents — Ra­jnish Ambed­kar, Chan­dan Saroj, Ni­raj Ku­mar, Ra­jesh Sarthi, Pankaj Vela and Vaib­hav Pim­palkar — are ex­plor­ing le­gal op­tions for re­vok­ing the ex­pul­sion or­der.

The ex­pul­sion has started a se­ries of stu­dent protests, which have now as­sumed po­lit­i­cal pro­por­tions in the peak elec­tion sea­son in Ma­ha­rash­tra with Congress writ­ing to chief elec­toral of­fi­cer de­mand­ing strong ac­tion against the “erring” var­sity of­fi­cials.

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