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India 2019: Top News India 2019

V Nivedita | Updated on December 31, 2019 Published on December 31, 2019

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As the year 2019 nears its end, here's a look at some of the most searched events on Google in this year.

Lok Sabha Elections

Any election in India is grand in scale, but the 2019 general election was one of the biggest polling exercise in the world. The seven-phase extravaganza started on April 11 and ended on May 19. The counting of votes took place on May 23. Over 10.35 lakh polling stations were established and about 17.4 lakh Verifiable Voter Paper Audit Trail machines, including those kept in reserve, were used in this election.

The BJP won 303 seats in the newly constituted 17th Lok Sabha, and the NDA got 353 seats. With this massive majority, Narendra Modi won his second term in office.

Click here for all the news related to the Lok Sabha elections 2019.

Article 370

The Parliament approved a resolution abrogating Article 370 for Jammu and Kashmir and passed a bill to bifurcate the State into two Union Territories - Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir. Home Minister Amit Shah said that the controversial provisions were responsible for poverty and lack of development in the region. However, the Opposition feared that the move itself was constitutional and the prolonged clampdown could alienate the people from India even more.

This move by the Centre led to heightened tensions between India and Pakistan, with the latter raising this issue in many international forums including the UN.

Here are some of our top stories on this topic

Read : Theatre of the absurd in Kashmir

Also read: Article 370 had to go, but dark clouds remain

Read more: A frustrated Imran may step up offensive

Chandrayaan 2

Chandrayaan 2, India’s second lunar mission, was launched on July 22. It was scheduled to be launched on July 15, but it was aborted 56 minutes before lift-off due to a technical snag. The mission was successful, but it could not achieve one aspect -- to land its lander (Vikram) on the moon. Vikram carried the rover (Pragyan), which was expected to carry out various experiments on the moon's surface.

On September 7, during the last minutes of descent, the communication link with Vikram snapped when it was about 2.1 km from the surface of

the moon. After three days, the ISRO confirmed the sighting of Vikram through images beamed by the Orbiter. Even after 14 days ( 1 lunar day), communications could not be re-established. On December 3, NASA confirmed that its satellite had found the debris of Vikram lander.

Read: Chennai-based techie Shanmuga Subramanian locates ISRO’s Vikram Lander

Also read: Chandrayaan-2: Despite the setback, the lunar mission counts as a success

PM Kisan Yojana

The Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi or PM Kisan, as it is popularly known, is a scheme launched by PM Narendra Modi on February 24, 2019, to provide additional income to small and marginal farmers. It provides eligible farmers a total sum of Rs 6,000 in a year. This amount is paid in three installments of Rs 2,000 each.

Though, the PM Kisan scheme was envisioned to address the issues faced by farmers, it has been criticised for not addressing the problems of landless farmers and farm labourers. It has also been criticised for the conditions, it imposed – farmers can get the benefit if they produce the land records.

Though it was compared to other schemes like that of Telangana's Rythu Bandhu scheme, it has captured the popular imagination. The scheme was one of the most searched terms on Google, ranking in the tenth position.

Also read: A scheme that can score over PM-Kisan

Assembly elections

Seven states went to polls this year. In Andhra Pradesh, YSR Congress Party’s YS Jagammohan Reddy routed Telugu Desam Party’s N Chandrababu Reddy in the elections which was held in April this year. The month also saw elections in Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha and Sikkim. In

Arunachal, incumbent CM Pema Khandu won the elections, and BJP returned to power. In Odisha, Biju Janta Dal’s Naveen Patnaik returned to power, becoming one of India’s longest serving CMs. He has been at the helm in Odisha for nearly twenty years. Sikkim Krantikari Morcha (SKM) president Prem Singh Tamang won the elections in Sikkim. He defeated former Chief Minister Pawan Kumar Chamling, one of India’s longest-serving CM.

Haryana, Maharashtra and Jharkhand went to polls in the October and November. BJP failed to retain power in two of these states, despite performing well in the elections. The elections for selecting a new government in the state of Haryana threw up a hung assembly. The ruling BJP, with 40 seats, emerged as the single-largest party, just six short of the halfway mark. The Congress bagged 31 seats. The Indian National Lok Dal and Haryana Lokhit Party bagged one seat each.  However, the BJP entered into a post-poll alliance with the Dushyant Chautala-led Jannayak Janata Party (JJP) to form the government in Haryana.

Read more: Post deal with Dushyant Chautala, BJP to form government in Haryana

Also read: Haryana assembly elections

In Maharashtra, the BJP was blindsided by long-time ally Shiv Sena, who broke their pre-poll alliance and formed the government with the NCP and the Congress. The BJP (105)-Shiv Sena (56) alliance collapsed because they couldn't agree on one key aspect: who will be the chief minister of the state. The Shiv Sena wanted the BJP to implement the "50-50 formula" by which the CM post will be divided equally between them, but the BJP was against it. This impasse broke an alliance of over 30 years. Along with the NCP (54 seats) and the Congress (44 seats), the Uddhav Thackeray become the CM of the State.

In Jharkhand, the BJP won only 22 seats, while JMM emerged as the single largest party, with 29 seats. The Congress won 15 seats. JMM-Congress and the RJD has a prepoll alliance, and they formed the government under Hemant Soren.

Cyclone Fani

Cyclone Fani, an extremely severe cyclone, made landfall at Puri in May 3, 2019. It is considered as a “rarest of rare” summer cyclone, and it was the biggest cyclone to hit Odisha after the 1999  Odisha cyclone. Cyclone Fani ravaged parts of Odisha, West Bengal and Bangladesh, killing 64 people in the State. A massive restoration-and-relief work was launched in the State, even as parts of the State went to polls for the Lok Sabha election. Around 2,000 emergency workers, including those from the NDRF, the Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF), one lakh officials and members of several civil society organisations provided emergency and other relief those affected.

Read: Eight dead as Cyclone Fani wreaks havoc in Odisha

Also read: Odisha estimates loss at ₹12,000 Cr due to cyclone Fani

Read more: No ‘Fani’ business in Chennai as cyclonic storm heads for Odisha

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Published on December 31, 2019
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