New Delhi: Even though Chief Ministers of five Congress-ruled states on Monday urged Congress president Rahul Gandhi to reconsider his decision to quit the party’s chief post, the incumbent party chief refused to budge.”The meeting of CMs of Congress-ruled states revolved around Rahul Gandhi’s resignation from the party’s top post. CMs present in the meeting tried to persuade Gandhi to not quit the top post saying that the party’s revival plan might get affected,” the party insiders said. Also Read – Balakot strikes show major shift in govt’s handling of terror attacks: IAF chiefHowever, the CMs of Congress-ruled states expressed hope that Rahul would heed to their request and not step down as party chief. While talking to reporters after the meeting, Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot said, “It was a good meeting that lasted around two hours. We conveyed and apprised him about the feelings of Congress workers across the country and urged him to continue to lead the party. We hope he will positively view our request to him to continue as Congress president.” Also Read – Pak activated 20 terror camps, 20 launch pads along LoCGehlot also said that the CMs met Gandhi at his residence and analysed the Lok Sabha poll debacle, besides taking moral responsibility for the party’s defeat. This was the Congress chief’s first meeting with the CMs after the party’s dismal performance in the general elections. Apart from Gehlot, other CMs who were present in the meeting include Madhya Pradesh CM Kamal Nath, Punjab CM Capt Amarinder Singh, Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel and Puducherry CM V Narayanasamy. As per sources, some CMs had also offered to resign taking responsibility for the party’s poor show in their respective states.
Marking World Oceans Day, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged the international community to do more to reverse degradation of the marine environment, which influences virtually all aspects of life on the planet.“Let us work together to create new waves of action for ocean sustainability – for people and the planet,” Mr. Ban said in a message marking the Day.“From trade to food to climate regulation, the oceans are integral to all of humanity. This is particularly so for coastal dwellers whose income and culture are irrevocably bound to the sea,” the UN chief said.“If we are to fully benefit from the oceans, we must reverse the degradation of the marine environment due to pollution, overexploitation and acidification,” he said, urging all nations to work towards that end, including by joining and implementing the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, the broad based treaty governing the world’s waters, often referred to as “the Constitution of the oceans.” Given the important role played by oceans for the planet’s food security, and the health and survival of all life, as well energy needs, the General Assembly decided that, from 2009, 8 June would be designated by the United Nations as ‘World Oceans Day’ to raise global awareness of the current challenges faced by the international community in connection with the oceans.This year’s theme for the Day is “Oceans and People.” The United Nations has planned a host of activities organized by the world body’s Division for Oceans and the Law of the Sea.The observance of the Day will take place at UN Headquarters on Monday starting at 1:15 p.m., with opening remarks by Patricia O’Brien, Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs. The event is being held in coordination with the American Museum of Natural History.Meanwhile, later this evening, New York City landmark, the Empire State Building will be lit in white, blue and purple representing the different layers of the ocean.