Bengaluru, August 19: Former deputy chief minister R Ashok said that the BJP MLAs from Bengaluru and BBMP corporators have decided to donate their two months salary to the Kodagu flood victims.

Speaking at a preparatory meeting on sending the relief materials to the flood victims, here on Sunday, Ashok said that party other office-bearers have also decided to contribute Rs 10,000 each to the flood victims. The district has never seen such a rain and disaster in this century. But the people of the district have lost their dear ones and lost their homes, he said.

He said that the party workers should collect the necessary materials like food items, cloths, medicines, drinking water, blankets, bed sheets, batteries and other materials and donations from the industrialists, businessmen, associations and others. If the people come forward to contribute voluntarily, party workers should collect them and handed them over to the party office, he said.

On Sunday, the BBMP members and MLAs have contributed Rs 11.56 lakh. They were in touch with the Kodagu MLAs and if needed, more donations would be provided, he said.

Party leaders V Somanna, Tejashwini Gowda, Tara, Muniraju, Manjula, Subbanna, Padmanabha Reddy and others were present.



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Hong Kong, Oct 25: Amnesty International said Monday it would close its two offices in Hong Kong this year, becoming the latest non-governmental organization to cease its operations amid a crackdown on political dissent in the city.

The human rights group said its local office in Hong Kong would close this month while its regional office will close by the end of the year, with regional operations moved to other offices in the Asia-Pacific region.

This decision, made with a heavy heart, has been driven by Hong Kong's national security law, which has made it effectively impossible for human rights organizations in Hong Kong to work freely and without fear of serious reprisals from the government, Anjhula Mya Singh Bais, chair of Amnesty's board, said in a statement.

Hong Kong implemented a sweeping national security law in 2020 following months of massive anti-government protests. The law outlaws secession, subversion of state power, terrorism and foreign collusion to intervene in the city's affairs. More than 120 people, many of them supporters of the city's democracy movement, have been arrested under the law.

The majority of the city's prominent pro-democracy activists are behind bars for taking part in unauthorized assemblies, and dozens of political organizations and trade unions have ceased operations out of concern for their members' personal safety under the security law.

Bais said the recent targeting of local human rights and trade union groups signaled authorities were intensifying their campaign to rid the city of dissenting voices. It is increasingly difficult for us to keep operating in such an unstable environment, she said.

Critics in Hong Kong say the national security law is an erosion of freedoms, such as those of expression and assembly, that were promised the city for 50 years when the former British colony was handed over to China in 1997.