Friday, November 27, 2015
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Cong 'strongly' believes in GST, govt gas to reach out: Rahul
BENGALURU, Nov 25 (Agencies): On the eve of Winter session of Parliament, Rahul Gandhi today said Congress "strongly" believed in GST, but government should reach out to the Opposition on certain issues, including the cap on rate. The Congress vice president outlined the party's stand on the contentious Goods and Service Tax(GST) Bill even as he made an all-round attack on the Modi government calling it "much worse" than "suit-boot-ki-sarkar." The NDA government is keen to push key reforms legislations like the stalled GST bill in the Winter session. Fielding questions on a wide range of issues during an interaction with students of a women's college here, Gandhi also spoke on the "rising intolerance", saying it "disturbs" him as an Indian, higlighting that "live and let live" was the c...
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Parliament session set to be stormy, opposition to raise 'intolerance'
NEW DELHI, Nov 24 (Agencies): The Winter session of Parliament beginning tomorrow is expected to be a stormy affair, with the opposition set to raise the 'intolerance' issue and press for a resolution to condemn it even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the House should run meaningfuly and constructively. Keen to pass key reform bills like GST and ensure a smooth session, government today reached out to opposition parties saying it "does not support or condone" such incidents and is aware of their concerns on "unfortunate incidens like Dadri and killing of M M Kalburgi". An all-party meeting held here in the backdrop of cine actor Aamir Khan's remarks on 'intolerance' saw opposition parties making a strong pitch for an early discussion on the issue, insisting that the returning of aw...
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No intention of leaving country, proud to be Indian: Aamir
MUMBAI, Nov 25 (Agencies): Under attack over his remarks on intolerance, Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan today asserted that he stood by his comments and made it clear that neither he nor his wife Kiran Rao have any intention of leaving the country. 50-year-old Aamir, who drew flak from BJP and a section of film fraternity for expressing his "alarm and despondency" over the rise in recent incidents of intolerance, came out with a statement, saying he is "proud to be an Indian". "First let me state categorically that neither I, nor my wife Kiran, have any intention of leaving the country. We never did, and nor would we like to in the future." "Anyone implying the opposite has either not seen my interview or is deliberately trying to distort what I have said. India is my country, I love i...
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India under Modi transforming at grassroots: Dr Jitendra
NEW DELHI, Nov 25: Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh said here that in the last 18 months, the phenomenon of transformation has itself acquired a different definition and that India under Prime Minister Narendra Modi is actually transforming at the grassroots. Addressing the 95th Annual meet of ASSOCHAM (Associated Chambers of Commerce & Industry of India) on the theme “Transforming India’s Socio-Economic Landscape”, Dr Jitendra Singh said, transformation is a continuous process and, constant transformation is taking place, not because of us, but in spite of us. The question, therefore, he said, is not whether we are triggering or initiat...
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PM underlines message of harmony on Guru Nanak Jayanti
NEW DELHI, Nov 25 (Agencies): On the occasion of Guru Nanak's birthday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today underlined the message of harmony and compassion propagated by the founder of Sikhism, a message that assumes significance in the midst of "intolerance" debate. "On Guru Nanak Jayanti, my greetings to everyone. Guru Nanak Dev's message of service, compassion and harmony inspire eternally," Modi tweeted. The Prime Minister's message assumes significance in view of the "intolerance" debate, which has been further fueled by film star Aamir Khan's remarks that he was "alarmed" by a number of incidences and his wife Kiran Rao had wondered if they should move out of India. Guru Nanak Jayanti also known as Gurpurab and Prakash Utsav marks the birthday of the first Sikh Guru Guru Nanak. I...
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Sexual exploitation of shelter inmates: Uttarakhand govt orders SIT probe
DEHRADUN, Nov 25 (Agencies): Uttarakhand government has formed an SIT to look into the veracity of reports about sexual exploitation of some inmates of the city's lone government-run shelter for women in distress. Meanwhile, two top officials of the shelter were also suspended after a probe by the administration found irregularities in its functioning. Superintendent of Nari Niketan Meenakshi Pokhriyal and its Superintendent in-charge Anita Maindola were suspended for negligence after Chief Minister Harish Rawat held a meeting last evening with officials looking into allegations about the manner in which the facility was functioning, CM's Media in-charge Surendra Kumar told agencies. The Chief Minister also ordered SIT probe into the allegation of sexual exploitation of some inmates. ...
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HC asks police to allow Tipu's birth anniversary function
CHENNAI, Nov 25 (Agencies): The Madras High Court today directed Tamil Nadu police to accord permission with conditions to an outfit to hold a public meeting in January in connection with the birth anniversary celebrations of 18th century Mysore ruler Tipu Sultan in Vellore district. Justice M M Sundresh gave the direction to the inspector of Gudiyatham Town Police Station on a petition filed by Ismail, General Secretary of Thamizhaga Makkal Jananayaga Katchi, seeking grant of permission to hold the function. The police had on November 20 informed the court that they had rejected permission to Katchi apprehending law and order problem, which was challenged by the outfit. When the matter came up today, the police informed the court that they were ready to give sanction to the organisati...
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Shun blame game over rain, flood in TN: Prof Swaminathan
CHENNAI, Nov 25 (Agencies): Eminent agriculture scientist Prof M S Swaminathan has urged government authorities and civic society to evolve a strategy to harvest rainwater and prevent flooding rather than indulge in a 'blame game' over the recent heavy rains and consequential hardship. His view assumes significance with opposition parties' criticising Tamil Nadu government for its "ineffective" preparation to tackle rains and relief work, and the state asserting that it took effective and necessary steps. "Instead of resorting to blame game, it is important for citizens and officers to develop a strategy for ensuring that the excess of monsoon rains is conserved," he said. In a statement here, he said the situation should be managed "in a manner that hardship to human beings and disrup...
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Govt on right track to bring 'Achhe Din': Advani
AHMEDABAD, Nov 22 (Agencies): Days after raising a banner of revolt against Prime Minister Narendra Modi following BJP's resounding defeat in Bihar polls, party patriarch L K Advani today said the government is on the right track to bring 'achhe din' in the country. Talking to reporters after exercising his franchise for the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation election at a polling booth in Khanpur area here, he said, "I believe that the whole system takes its own time. Since, the government is going in the right direction, I believe that the results will also be good." He was asked whether the Modi government has failed to fulfil its promise of bringing 'acche din' (a popular slogan of BJP during 2014 Lok Sabha elections), especially in the wake of recent price rise. Voting is underway to...
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India test-fires indigenously developed interceptor missile
BALASORE, Nov 22 (Agencies): As part of efforts to develop a full fledged multi-layer Ballistic Missile Defence system, India today test-fired its indigenously developed supersonic interceptor missile, capable of destroying any incoming ballistic missile, from a test range off Odisha coast. "The test was conducted to validate various parameters of the interceptor in flight mode," said defence sources. The interceptor, known as Advanced Air Defence (AAD) missile, was engaged against an electronically prepared target which simulated the trajectory of a hostile ballistic missile. After getting signals from tracking radars, the interceptor, positioned at Abdul Kalam Island (Wheeler Island), roared through its trajectory at around 0946 hrs to destroy the incoming missile mid-air, in an endo...
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Ex-IAF officer bombards CIC with over 3,500 RTI petitions
NEW DELHI, Nov 22 (Agencies): A former Indian Air Force officer, who claims to be a whistleblower in the force, has literally carpet bombed the Central Information Commission with over 3,500 RTI petitions and counting. As a result of this, the Commission had to group his pleas under various common points before giving a verdict on each issue even as it underlined that there was a need to consider the feasibility of having some legal filter based on objective criteria to sift those applications that may appear to be needlessly repetitive. The Commission also said that this order be placed before the Chief Information Commissioner to device a mechanism to handle applications appearing to be 'vexatious' even as it highlighted that RTI Act has not defined the term. To handle this load of a...
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Rahul, Amarinder conspiring to disturb Punjab peace: BJP
CHANDIGARH, Nov 22 (Agencies): BJP today alleged that Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, former Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh and and PPCC president Partap Singh Bajwa have hatched a "conspiracy" to acquire power in the state and were supporting radicals to disturb peace. BJP National Secretary Tarun Chugh alleged that under this conspiracy Congress MLA Ramanjit Singh Sikki and Kisan Cell president Inderjit Singh Zira were sent to openly support the radicals during November 10 Sikh congregation at village Chabba. Chugh alleged that the only thing Congress at present has in mind is that how they can wrest power in the state and make a comeback. "It is sad to note that Congress has stooped so low to gain some political brownie points", he said. The BJP National secretary...
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I am being used as 'Political Tool': Robert Vadra
NEW DELHI, Nov 22 (Agencies): Robert Vadra, whose land deals are being probed in BJP-ruled Haryana and Rajasthan, today contended that he was being subjected to a "political witch-hunt" and used as a "political tool". Son-in-law of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, the controversial businessman said a distinction should be made between him as an individual conducting business like anyone else and the politics of the family of his wife Priyanka Gandhi Vadra "without constantly attempting to link the two". Alleging that there was a "sustained political attack" on him, 46-year-old Vadra claimed that BJP was using attacks on him as a "political tool whenever they need to divert public attention". He said he has always conducted business transparently in accordance with the law but he was be...
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Delhi to go 'Car-Free' on Jan 22, i'll cycle to office: Kejriwal
NEW DELHI, Nov 22 (Agencies): To make Delhi pollution-free, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal today announced that 'Car-Free Day' will be organised across the national capital on January 22, saying that he will cycle to his office that day. He also said that the government with the support of people will run campaign to encourage masses to use cycle or public transport to reach their offices on January 22. The Delhi government today held the second 'Car-Free Day' in Dwarka -- on the road stretch between Sector 3-13 and Sector 7-9, which witnessed a cycle rally led by Kejriwal, and participation of school children, and IAS and DANICS officers. The chief minister said, "If we reduce cars on the roads of Delhi, pollution level can come down significantly in the national capital. "I am not s...
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Dr Jitendra announces superspeciality courses for Northeast doctors
NEW DELHI, Nov 20: As a new initiative for Northeast, Union DoNER Minister Dr Jitendra Singh today announced super-specialty courses for Doctors from the eight North-Eastern States. This will include provision for DM and Mch courses in medical institutions outside Northeast as well as option of short duration training up to six months in super-specialty. Addressing a meeting of Principal Secretaries of Health from North-Eastern States, Dr Jitendra Singh said, to begin with, a six months short-term training in Medical Oncology and Surgical Oncology will be undertaken from 1st of January at the Adyar Cancer Institute, Chennai. The cost and financial implications of this training course will be borne by the Ministry of DoNER, he said. Meanwhile, the same Institute will also seek approval fr...
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Sheena Murder Case: Peter Mukerjea to be produced in court
MUMBAI, Nov 20 (Agencies): Former media magnate Peter Mukerjea, arrested by the CBI in connection with the sensational Sheena Bora murder case for allegedly "shielding the accused", will be produced in a magistrate's court here today. Peter Mukherjea's wife Indrani, her former husband Sanjeev Khanna and her former driver Shyamvar Rai will also be brought to the court since their judicial custody expires today. In a fresh twist in the Sheena case, Peter Mukherjea was yesterday arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), hours after it filed a chargesheet in which Indrani, the mother of the victim born from her first marriage, and two others were accused of the crime. A CBI spokesperson had said that Peter's name surfaced during its probe in the case and "he has been arrested"...
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Nitish sworn in as Bihar CM, Lalu's 2 sons as ministers
PATNA, Nov 20 (Agencies): Nitish Kumar today took oath as Bihar Chief Minister along with 28 ministers, including RJD chief Lalu Prasad's two sons Tejaswi and Tej Pratap, as the grand alliance government of RJD-JD(U)-Congress was sworn in at a mega ceremony attended by several top leaders from non-BJP parties. Besides Nitish, 12 members each from RJD and JD(U) and four from Congress were administered oath as ministers by Governor Ram Nath Kovind. Speculation is rife that first time MLA Tejaswi, who was the second person to be sworn in after Nitish at the event held at Gandhi Maidan, will be made Deputy Chief Minister. Nitish took oath as the chief minister for the fifth time. Portfolios OF the ministers are likely to be allocated soon. A galaxy of leaders including Congress Vice Presi...
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Rajan lodged in Tihar jail, security stepped up
NEW DELHI, Nov 20 (Agencies): Security has been stepped up in and around Jail no 2 of Tihar prison where underworld don Chhota Rajan was lodged yesterday after being remanded in a 14 -day judicial custody. "The jail authorities have been asked to minutely screen the area and maintain maximum security. A team of 10 head warders, 10 warders, one deputy superintendent and two assistant superintendents has been drawn for the purpose from different jails," a senior prison official said. "The DG has also briefed the staff and warned that no breach of security will be tolerated," he added. Rajan was yesterday brought to the high-security Tihar jail after being sent to 14 days judicial custody by court as CBI decided to take over all the 71 cases registered by Maharashtra Police against him. ...
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TN Floods: Toll increases to 120, more rains expected
CHENNAI, Nov 20 (Agencies): The toll from rain-related incidents in Tamil Nadu increased to 120 today, as overnight rains lashed many parts of the city, raising fears of more inundation. However, a bright morning brought relief to the residents of the rain-drenched city, even as the weather office has forecast rains for November 21. In a statement, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said nine persons had been killed in the last four days, with the victims mainly hailing from Chennai and Kancheepuram districts, and expressed sympathies with their families. She announced a relief of Rs four lakh each to the families of the victims. Meanwhile, the Regional Weather office forecast rain in coastal and interior districts for the next 24 hours. Rains were particularly expected in the districts a...
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20 Indians among 170 hostages in mali hotel: govt
NEW DELHI, Nov 20 (Agencies):Twenty Indians are among the 170 guests and staff inside the luxury hotel which is under the seize of gunmen in Mali's capital Bamako, External Affairs Ministry said today. The Ministry Spokesperson said the Indian Ambassador was in touch with the nationals and spoke to them, indicating that they were safe so far. "According to the current information, there are 20 Indians staying in the hotel. Our Ambassador is continuously in touch with them and monitoring the situation," the spokesperson said. These nationals are employees of a Dubai-based company and were staying in the hotel permanently, he added. Gunmen went on a shooting rampage at the Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako, seizing as many as 170 guests and staff in an ongoing hostage-taking, the hotel chain...
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Health, medication should not be linked to religion: Big B
GURGAON, Nov 20 (Agencies): Megastar Amitabh Bachchan today said that though India is a country with various beliefs, religion should not be a hurdle in health and medication. The 73-year-old actor, who is the brand ambassador of India in the fight against tuberculosis (TB), said during the polio eradication campaign he found that there were few communities who stayed from the medication in name of their belief. "The huge problem which we face during health campaigns is, how one should reach out to the people? India is a diverse country with various beliefs which keep people away from taking a specific kind of medication. "We had problems with polio. There were several communities, who thought taking polio drops was something against their caste or religion. Health and medication shoul...
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Govt further amends affidavit in Swamy case
NEW DELHI,Nov 20 (Agencies): Government today completely deleted a para in the original affidavit in a matter involving BJP leader Subramanian Swamy which had made out a case for prosecuting him for allegedly promoting feelings of enmity and hatred between Hindus and Muslims in violation of law. "Charges levelled against the petitioner (Swamy) will be decided by the Court concerned and that deponent is not expressing any opinion thereon. The contents of para 11 of the Counter Affidavit may therefore be permitted to be deleted," Laltiana Chhangte, Under Secretary, in the Union Home Secretary, said in the fresh affidavit filed in the Supreme Court. "The present affidavit may be read as part of the counter affidavit 28.10.2015 filed by the answering respondent," Chhangte's affidavit read. ...
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