Mangaluru, Sep 24: Dismissing the BJP's allegation that Congress in Karnataka lacked unity, deputy leader of Opposition in the State Assembly U T Khader on Saturday said the ruling party is engaged in a propaganda war.

Addressing reporters here, Khader said both D K Shivakumar and Siddaramaiah are having a cordial relationship and the BJP is frequently raising the charge against Congress to create confusion among the people.

He said despite the departure of many leaders from the party, the Congress would always stick to its principles.

Khader said Rahul Gandhi's historic Bharat Jodo Yatra' would enter the State through Gundulpet by this month-end. The yatra is aimed at building bond of friendship among the people of all States, he said.

No one has undertaken such a yatra in the country's history and no one is likely to do so in future as well, he said, adding that the march would instil hope and confidence in the people.

Rahul Gandhi's yatra would unite the people at a time when people are being divided on the basis of religion and caste. Congress workers from Mangaluru would take part in the yatra programme at Chamarajanagar on October 2, Khader said.

On the controversy over PayCM posters put up by the Congress, Khader said BJP has been campaigning against Congress leaders through derogatory comments on social media. If they are probing into the Congress campaign, let them investigate into the BJP's negative propaganda against Congress leaders, too, he said.

Khader said while countering extremist activities in society, impartial action should be taken against everyone who creates fear in society through murders and attacks. There should not be any discrimination while taking legal action against criminal elements, he said.

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Moscow, Dec 4: About 2,500 seals have been found dead on the Caspian Sea coast in southern Russia, officials said Sunday.

Authorities in the Russian province of Dagestan said it was unclear why the mass die-off happened but that it was likely due to natural causes.

Regional officials initially reported Saturday that 700 dead seals were found on the coast, but the Dagestan division of the Russian Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment later raised the figure to about 2,500.

Zaur Gapizov, head of the Caspian Environmental Protection Center, said in a statement that the seals likely died a couple of weeks ago. He added that there was no sign that they were killed or caught in fishing nets.

Experts of the Federal Fisheries Agency and prosecutors inspected the coastline and collected data for laboratory research, which didn't immediately spot any pollutants.

Several previous incidents of mass seal deaths were attributed to natural causes. Kazakhstan, which has a long Caspian coastline, reported at least three such incidents this year.

Data about the number of seals in the Caspian vary widely. The fisheries agency has said the overall number of Caspian seals is 270,000-300,000, while the Caspian Environmental Protection Center put the number at 70,000.