Morning Brief: Groundbreaking Ceremony For Queen Suriratna Memorial In Ayodhya Today; US Goes To Midterm Polls; And More

Morning Brief: Groundbreaking Ceremony For Queen Suriratna Memorial In Ayodhya Today; US Goes To Midterm Polls; And More

by Swarajya Staff - Tuesday, November 6, 2018 09:30 AM IST
Morning Brief: Groundbreaking Ceremony For Queen Suriratna Memorial In Ayodhya Today; US Goes To Midterm Polls; And MoreOn the occasion of Chhoti Diwali, 1.7 lakhs earthen Diyas illuminated at majestic ghats of Ayodhya. (Deepak Gupta/Hindustan Times via Getty Images) 

Good morning, dear reader! Here’s your morning news brief for today.

Groundbreaking Ceremony For Suriratna Memorial In Ayodhya Today

The groundbreaking ceremony for a memorial of Queen Suriratna (Heo Hwang-ok) will be held in Ayodhya today. South Korean First Lady  Kim Jung-sook, who arrived in Lucknow on Monday, will travel to Ayodhya with Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath to take part in the ceremony. The two countries had signed an agreement for the expansion of the Suriratna memorial project. The project was inaugurated in 2001. The monument was built in Korean style using 7,300 kilograms of stone shipped from the country.

According to Korean chronicle Samguk Yusa, Princess Suriratna from Ayodhya had travelled to Korea and married King Kim Suro to became Queen Heo Hwang-ok around 2000 years ago. This is significant because a large number of Koreans, including the wife of former President Lee Myung-bak, Kim Yoon-ok and another former President Kim Young-sam, trace their ancestry to the royal couple. Ayodhya is abuzz with the preparations for the Deepotsav festival. Over three lakh earthen lamps will be lightened on the banks of Saryu river.

US Goes To Midterm Polls Today

US citizens will exercise their franchise in the midterm elections today. The elections, which take place halfway through a president’s term (hence the name, midterm), are being seen as a referendum on the current administration. All 435 seats in the US House of Representatives and one third (35) of all seats in the US Senate will be up for grab in the election. Other than these, the results will also have a bearing on thirty-six state governorships, three US territory governorships, many city mayorships and multiple local offices.

At present, the Republicans control the House of Representatives and the Senate. However, experts are suggesting the Democrats might take control. While 51 seats or more are needed to control the Senate, the Democrats will need to secure at least 218 seats to get a majority in the House. With a majority in the House, Democrats will be able to significantly hamper Trump’s ability to implement its programs and begin impeachment proceedings against him.

Results Of Karnataka Bypolls To Be Out Today

Results of the by-elections to two assembly and three Lok Sabha constituencies in Karnataka will be released today. The bypolls were held to Ballari, Shivamogga and Mandya Lok Sabha seats, and Ramanagara and Jamkhandi assembly segments. While the Bharatiya Janata Party had fielded candidates in all five seats, the Congress and Janata Dal (Secular) fielded candidates on two and three seats, respectively, as part of a seat-sharing arrangement. The coalition has been calling the by-elections a semi-final for the 2019 general elections.

Among others, the results will determine the fate of Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy's wife Anita Kumaraswamy, state BJP chief B S Yeddyurappa's son B Y Raghavendra and former chief minister S Bangarappa's son Madhu Bangarappa. Around 67 per cent voter turnout was recorded in the bypolls for five constituencies. Counting of votes would begin at 8 am.

Government Wants Rs 3.6 Lakh Crore From RBI

The Finance Ministry’s request for the transfer of a surplus of Rs 3.6 lakh crore from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to the government is the reason behind its ongoing stand-off with the central bank, The Indian Express has reported. The RBI is against the transfer of this amount, which forms a third of its total reserves of Rs 9.59 lakh crore. The ministry, the report says, believes that the framework governing the transfer of surplus from the RBI to the government is based on a very “conservative” assessment of risk by the central bank.

The ministry also says that the framework was “unilaterally” adopted by the RBI as government nominees on the Board of the bank were not present during the meeting. The RBI is said to have argued that the transfer of surplus can adversely impact macroeconomic stability. Recently, RBI Deputy Governor Viral Acharya had said that the transfer can be “catastrophic”.

Jolt For Congress in Mizoram; Speaker Quits Party, Joins BJP

In a major setback for the Congress in Mizoram just three weeks ahead of the polls, Assembly Speaker Hiphei has resigned from his post and the party before joining the BJP. The seven-time Congress legislator is likely to be fielded by the saffron party in the forthcoming assembly polls in the hill state. Polls are due for the 40-member assembly of Mizoram, which is the only state out of eight in the north-east to be ruled by the Congress, on 28 November.

Earlier, the Congress had named Hiphhei as its candidate for the Palak constituency. He was elected to the Mizoram assembly from Palak constituency in 2013. However, the party had replaced him with party general secretary K T Rokhaw last week following reports that he might join the BJP.

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We hope you enjoyed reading our morning brief. Have a great day ahead!

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