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Ramesh Vinayak

A journalist of over 35 years standing, Ramesh Vinayak is Executive Editor of Hindustan Times at Chandigarh He specialises in covering the north Indian territory of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, besides the Punjabi diaspora.

Articles by Ramesh Vinayak

HT Explains: A 5-point FAQ on the Lok Sabha battle in Haryana

The BJP is unlikely to repeat its 2019 Lok Sabha election performance of winning all 10 seats with a vote share of 58% in Haryana

Former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda has led the Congress’s campaign. (HT PHOTO)
Published on May 18, 2024 06:28 PM IST

HT Explains: A 5-point FAQ on the Lok Sabha battle in Punjab

Farm unions have disrupted the Bharatiya Janata Party (BKP)’s campaign, blocked its candidates from entering villages, and called for their boycott

AAP appears to be in the pole position in Punjab. (REUTERS)
Published on May 17, 2024 07:40 AM IST

HT Interview: Modi magic will work in Punjab this time, says state BJP chief Sunil Jakhar

With the BJP contesting Punjab’s all 13 Lok Sabha seats for the first time since 1996, Sunil Jakhar, 70, is steering the party’s campaign amidst relentless protests by farm unions against its candidates. The election, the first since he joined the saffron party two years ago, will be a litmus test for him and also for BJP’s gambit to enhance its footprint beyond the traditional urban base. In an interaction with HT on Thursday, Jakhar spoke on a range of issues. Edited excerpts:

Punjab BJP chief Sunil Jakhar during an interaction at HT office in Mohali on Thursday (Sanjeev Sharma/HT)
Updated on May 17, 2024 08:58 AM IST

Will fight for Kashmir’s lost dignity: Sajjad Lone

Sajjad Lone is the prime challenger to National Conference leader and former chief minister Omar Abdullah on the Baramulla Lok Sabha seat that goes to the polls on May 20

Jammu and Kashmir People’s Conference chief Sajjad Lone (File photo)
Updated on May 10, 2024 09:36 AM IST

Omar Abdullah a tourist in Kashmir, I am son of the soil, JKPC’s Sajjad Lone

Lone, 58, is the prime challenger to National Conference (NC) leader-former chief minister Omar Abdullah in the Baramulla Lok Sabha seat that goes to the polls on May 20

Jammu and Kashmir People’s Conference (JKPC) chief Sajjad Lone (File Photo)
Updated on May 09, 2024 07:50 PM IST

BJP fighting proxy poll in Kashmir: Omar

2024 Lok Sabha election in J&K, post Article 370 abrogation, sees normalcy. BJP absence in Kashmir raises questions on impact of the move.

Candid Talk:NC candidate from Baramulla, Omar Abdullah, a three-time MP, is focusing his campaign on issues of identity and special status of J&K.
Updated on May 07, 2024 10:03 PM IST

Omar backs quota for needy Muslims

NC leader and former J&K chief minister Omar Abdullah says he’s not for politics of appeasement but economically disadvantaged Muslims need reservation for their uplift

Omar backs quota for needy Muslims
Published on May 07, 2024 09:50 PM IST

BJP fighting Lok Sabha polls in Kashmir through proxies: Omar Abdullah

Omar Abdullah said he is categorical in his assertion that the BJP is part of the Lok Sabha election process in Kashmir behind the scenes

Former J&K chief minister Omar Abdullah. (X)
Published on May 07, 2024 12:47 PM IST

Interview | Punjab will vote on performance, BJP’s polarisation won’t work: Mann

In the interview, Mann railed against PM Narendra Modi and defended his performance in Punjab while exuding confidence on INDIA bloc’s poll prospects.

CANDID AND COMBATIVE: Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann interacting with Hindustan Times at his official residence in Chandigarh on Tuesday. (Ravi Kumar/HT)
Updated on Apr 24, 2024 12:19 PM IST

Interview| BJP has people’s trust, will score 10/10 again: Haryana CM Nayab Saini

Saini, who was picked by the BJP to substitute Manohar Lal Khattar on March 12 to tide over nine years of anti-incumbency before the Lok Sabha and assembly elections, spoke to HT on a range of issues from Brand Modi to party candidates facing farmer protests.

Haryana chief minister Nayab Singh Saini says the BJP will buck the anti-incumbency factor and reap electoral dividends of a double-engine government in both Haryana and at the Centre. (Keshav Singh/HT)
Updated on Apr 23, 2024 12:38 PM IST

PollTalk@HT: Congress will stop BJP bandwagon in Punjab, says Partap Bajwa

As the leader of opposition in the Punjab assembly, Congress stalwart Partap Singh Bajwa, 67, is at the forefront of the party’s Lok Sabha poll campaign in Punjab. In an interaction with HT staffers, moderated by Executive Editor Ramesh Vinayak, Bajwa, exuded confidence on Congress prospects, assailed party hoppers and targeted Modi-led BJP and AAP CM Bhagwant Mann with his trademark sharp barbs. Edited excerpts:

BAJWA GOES BALLISTIC:During an interaction at HT in Mohali on Wednesday, Congress leader Partap Singh Bajwa was unsparing in his criticism of BJP and the AAP. (Ravi Kumar/HT)
Updated on Apr 18, 2024 06:18 AM IST

HT Interview: For SAD, Panth and Punjab matter more than power, says Sukhbir Badal

Pitchforked into a four-way poll fight in Punjab after BJP not agreeing to SAD’s pre-conditions to re-stitch an alliance, Sukhbir Singh Badal, Akali Dal chief, has upped the ante on the Panthic agenda in a bid to reclaim his party’s eroded core support base among Sikhs and farmers. During an interaction at HT office in Mohali, Badal, 62, spoke for the first time on the reasons for breakdown of tie-up talks, BJP’s pole position in national politics, federalism and future of regional parties. Edited excerpts:

SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal during an interaction at HT office in Mohali on Tuesday. (SANJEEV SHARMA/HT)
Updated on Apr 03, 2024 09:26 AM IST

HT Interview: Focus on rehab, restoring infra in disaster-hit Himachal, says CM

CM Sukhu is pulling out all the stops to convince the Centre to declare the state’s losses as national disaster and also give a special relief package.

Hands-on and Humane: Last week, Sukhu donated <span class='webrupee'>₹</span>51 lakh from his personal savings to state disaster relief fund, a symbolic gesture that earned him a measure of public appreciation across the state. (HT photo)
Updated on Sep 19, 2023 01:24 AM IST
By, Chandigarh

If Mann defames me outside House, he’ll face criminal case: Punjab governor

Purohit had termed the session ‘ patently illegal”, saying it violated constitutional provisions, a stance contested by the AAP government.

Punjab governor Banwarilal Purohit interacting with HT at Punjab Raj Bhavan in Chandigarh on Friday. (Keshav Singh/HT)
Updated on Aug 06, 2023 04:46 AM IST
By, Chandigarh

Exclusive| AAP govt not listening, there’s no transparency: Punjab governor

In March, the Punjab govt moved the SC accusing governor Banwarilal Purohit of not “reverting” to the cabinet’s decision of summoning the budget session

Punjab governor Banwarilal Purohit interacting with HT at Punjab Raj Bhavan in Chandigarh on Friday. (Keshav Singh/HT)
Updated on Aug 06, 2023 12:05 PM IST

‘Mind your words’ or face criminal complaint: Punjab governor to Bhagwant Mann

Punjab governor Banwarilal Purohit has accused chief minister Bhagwant Mann of making derogatory references to him in the last assembly session in June.

Bhagwant Mann (PTI)
Updated on Aug 06, 2023 12:07 PM IST

Parkash Singh Badal: Akali Dal giant who reshaped Punjab’s politics dies aged 95

In the tumultuous terrain of a front-line Sikh majority state, Parkash Singh Badal was the quintessential moderate, a secular man, and a fighter for Punjab.

In its 100-year-old history, Shiromani Akali Dal, one of the oldest regional parties, has not seen a figure as towering as Parkash Singh Badal . He was the state’s longest serving chief minister, at 17 years across five terms (HT photo)
Updated on Apr 26, 2023 05:16 AM IST
By, Chandigarh

Parkash Singh Badal: Giant who reshaped Punjab’s politics dies aged 95

Parkash Singh Badal, a five-time chief minister of Punjab and the last surviving member of a political generation that saw independence, has died at 95. He was a pragmatic practitioner of communal harmony, a liberal and secular man, and an avowed protagonist of and a fierce fighter for Punjab?s interests.

Parkash Singh Badal with Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Madan Lal Khurana in 1996. (HT Archive)
Updated on Apr 26, 2023 12:21 AM IST
By, Chandigarh

HT interview: Will fight radicalism with good governance, says Punjab CM Mann

In an exclusive sit-down interview with Hindustan Times, Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann says there is no surge of radicalisation in state. “The social bonding in Punjab is very strong. Punjabis’ issues now are employment, industry, higher education and health,” says Mann

interview BATTLE READY Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann says the state has lately seen a growing nexus of drug smugglers, gangsters and terrorists. Now, the drone-dropped consignments from Pakistan carry drugs, money and arms. To deal with this, he has sought the Centre’s help for police modernisation and anti-drone technology (Sameer Sehgal/HT)
Updated on Mar 17, 2023 01:46 PM IST
By, Chandigarh

Double-engine factor has given us advantage in Himachal and Gujarat, says Nadda

In an interview with Hindustan Times, Nadda while talking about the BJP exuded confidence on the party’s poll prospects in Himachal and Gujarat.

BJP national president JP Nadda during an exclusive interview with Hindustan Times, in Chandigarh on Wednesday. (Ravi Kumar/ HT Photo)
Updated on Oct 13, 2022 12:02 PM IST

Punjab not ready to resolve water dispute, says Haryana CM ML Khattar

Haryana is contemplating a model where the government will not be paying money for getting the land allotted to set up additional assembly building in Chandigarh, says chief minister ML Khattar. 

interview On SYL, Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar says he has sought the mediation of Centre. He has written to the Union Jal Shakti Ministry to convene a meeting of Haryana and Punjab at the earliest. (Sanjeev Sharma/HT)
Updated on Jul 18, 2022 11:20 AM IST
ByRamesh Vinayak and Hitender Rao, Chandigarh

Tangible growth in Ladakh since it became Union Territory: RK Mathur

Ladakh was carved out as a Union Territory from the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir three years back

Ladakh lieutenant governor RK Mathur. (HT PHOTO)
Updated on Jun 24, 2022 12:45 PM IST

‘Don’t see AAP as a threat to BJP...it’s disintegrating’

In a wide-ranging interview with HT, Himachal Pradesh chief minister Jai Ram Thakur assessed the AAP challenge, dwelt at length on his report card, and explained why his party would win

Himachal Pradesh chief minister Jai Ram Thakur will face his first test next month -- the Shimla municipal polls, which will be AAP’s debut election in the state
Updated on Apr 13, 2022 01:52 PM IST

Meet Punjab’s True ShowMann

At 48, Bhagwant Mann will be the youngest to helm the state since 1970 when 42-year-old Parkash Singh Badal headed a coalition government. As a rank outsider who cut his teeth in politics in 2012, Mann has come a long way in a decade before he got nominated as the party’s CM face last month

A supporter applies ‘tilak’ on the poster of AAP chief ministerial candidate Bhagwant Mann in celebration of the party’s win in the Punjab assembly elections at the party headquarters in New Delhi on Thursday. (PTI Photo)
Published on Mar 10, 2022 07:51 PM IST

Punjab voted with vengeance, and decisively

BEYOND THE NEWS: High on a heady victory, Bhagwant Mann has his task cut out. He will have to navigate the burden of soaring expectations stemming from a raft of populist promises that the AAP has made, while steering the state beset with daunting challenges: A ballooning ₹3 lakh crore public debt, farm distress, burgeoning unemployment and drug menace

Aam Aadmi Party supporters celebrating the stunning victory of the AAP in Punjab on Thursday. For once, restive Punjab, caught in a subliminal churn of anger and aspirations, has inflicted a collective punishment on an entrenched political class and reset the political dynamics like never before. (Keshav Singh/HT)
Published on Mar 10, 2022 07:03 PM IST

Broom makes clean sweep in Punjab

In its historic win, the Arvind Kejriwal-led party smashed Punjab’s long-entrenched bipolar polity lorded over by the Congress and Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) which have ruled the state almost alternatively for last six decades.

AAP supporters celebrating their historic win in Punjab, at Mohali on Thursday. (Ravi Kumar/HT)
Updated on Mar 10, 2022 04:01 PM IST
By, Chandigarh

People will vote decisively on Feb 20, say Punjab’s 3 chief ministerial faces

Punjab election: Charanjit Singh Channi, Bhagwant Mann and Sukhbir Singh Badal have emerged as the crucial swingers in the Punjab elections. HT asked them 10 questions on the issues that hold the key to their electoral fate and Punjab’s future.

interview Punjab CM Charanjit Channi (left), SAD's Sukhbir Singh Badal (centre) and AAP's Bhagwant Mann (right).
Updated on Feb 16, 2022 04:12 PM IST
By, , Chandigarh, Hindustan Times

‘AAP’s work in Delhi is visible; will repeat here’: Bhagwant Mann

“Two parties have been taking turns to rule the state. People had no option, but they have now got the third alternative,” the Aam Aadmi Party's CM candidate Bhagwant Mann said. 

AAP's CM candidate Bhagwant Mann.(HT Photo)
Published on Feb 16, 2022 03:56 AM IST

‘SAD is the only Punjabi party, rest are national’: Sukhbir Singh Badal

“We are the only Punjabi party; the rest are national,” said Sukhbir Singh Badal.

Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal.
Published on Feb 16, 2022 03:53 AM IST

‘If AAP wins, it will compromise state’s interests’: Punjab CM Channi

“The Congress is seeking a mandate for another five years so that we can take Punjab forward,” CM Charanjit Singh Channi said.

Punjab CM Charanjit Singh Channi.
Updated on Feb 16, 2022 03:52 AM IST
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