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Tag: august

Kamala Mills Fire: BMC bulldozes into eateries’ violations

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) went on a razing rampage on illegal extensions in hotel and restaurants across the city. However, it took action only after 14 people lost their lives. The civic administration delayed its action just to follow the standard operating procedure (SOP) against illegal use of open spaces on terraces.The BMC in full swing started pulling down illegal extensions in restaurants and shopping malls across Mumbai on Saturday morning and took action on 314 restaurants. It inspected a 624 eateries. BMC also seized more than 417 cylinders from the restaurants which were stored without permissions.In Raghuwanshi compound, four restaurants that faced action were Sheesha, P22, Hotel Payaana and Hotel Fumes.Prashant Sapkale, assistant commissioner of G South ward, who has now been transferred to K East ward said that he had taken action against Mojo’s Bistro in August and September following complaints of violation of open space on the terrace. “We had given three inspection reports to the owner of Mojo’s Bistro as part of the standard operating procedure (SOP) for violation of open space on the terrace and took action on August 2 and September 22,” said Sapkale. He added that he had no other option but to follow the SOP before taking action.Shockingly, the G South ward office forgot to follow the SoP and demolished illegal extension without even serving a notice. “Did the civic body follow SOP while action against these eateries,” said Dinesh Vaghela, a Right to Information Activist (RTI).“At any place where hookah is being served, no food item can be served,” said Vaghela. He added that the civic body violated rules and regulations while granting licence under section 394 of Mumbai Municipal Act.

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Kamala Mills tragedy: Pub claims fire emanated from ‘adjoining quarters,’ rejects cops’ version on safety violations

Claiming that it had all the fire safety regulations in place, the ‘1 Above’ pub, where a massive blaze killed 14 people, where a massive blaze killed 14 people, on Friday said that the fire emanated from the “adjoining quarters” to the establishment. In a statement, ‘1 Above’ rejected the claims made by Mumbai police and civic officials which said that pub did not follow fire safety norms, violated regulations and its staff fled from the scene after the fire erupted. “The facts of the incident, as seen by our staff, indicate a rising fire that began to emanate from the adjoining quarters to 1Above. We presume the unmanageable nature at the preliminary source of the fire resulted in it’s escalation to our property where all owners, staff and restaurant management from 1 Above engaged immediately in clearing the crowd from the establishment,” it said.It added, “There was no escape from Mojo’s Bistro therefore we believe that all their guests were told go through the premises of 1Above as we have an emergency exit. Hence patrons from Mojo’s Bistro also began to rush into our premises as we helped the Fire Brigade that had arrived at the scene to evacuate guests. All our premises are well inspected and we have the requisite permissions for the same.” The managment of the ‘1 Above’ pub claimed that there were over 10 fire extinguishers and “adequate fire safety signatures” in the premises as is required by the authorities.”1Above has all it’s fire safety regulations, licenses, procedures and norms in place – we have been able to help save many lives thanks to our fire safety protocols and are grateful to our staff for their presence of mind and help in this time of crisis,” it said. 1Above conducts a quarterly fire safety and crisis management training, it said. Earlier, Mumbai police and civic officials said the pub did not follow fire safety norms and violated regulations on encroachment with obstructions blocking its emergency exit.Contrary to the claim by 1Above, police said, the pub’s manager and other staff fled from the spot instead of helping the customers injured in the blaze.”No fire safety norms were followed by the pub and the management did not make any arrangement for the safe exit of its customers during the blaze,” police said.They said there were hindrances created on the emergency exit way. “Negligence on the part of the pub led to the death of 14 customers and injuries to several others.” “The manager and other staff of the pub ran away from the spot without helping those injured in the blaze,” police said.Meanwhile, a civic official told PTI the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) had taken action against the pub more than three times for “violations”.According to the official, the pub had obtained the fire safety and building permissions from the civic body in October 2016.”However, as ‘1 Above’ flouted the rules and regulations by way of encroachment and other violations, the BMC had taken legal action against its management on May 27 for using the open space for commercial activities,” he said.Notices had been served on the pub on August 4, September 22 and October 27 this year by the BMC, asking it to stop encroaching on the open space, he said.”On August 2, we razed a portion of the pub for encroaching upon the open space. Thereafter, on October 22, we seized the open space, where it illegally served the customers. Despite that, the owners of the pub had indulged in violations,” he added.The fire started at the rooftop of the pub which was hosting a birthday party and spread rapidly through the building, killing 14 people, most of them women, shortly after midnight.The police have booked Hratesh Sanghvi, Jigar Sanghvi and Abhijeet Manka of C Grade Hospitality, which manages the pub, along with others, under IPC sections 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder), 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) and 338 (causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others).The case has been lodged at the N M Joshi Marg Police Station. (With PTI inputs)

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Didn’t consult Muslim bodies before drafting triple talaq bill: PP Chaudhary

A day before the bill banning triple talaq is going to be tabled in Parliament, Minister of State for Law and Justice PP Chaudhary, admitted that Muslim groups were not consulted before drafting the bill.Chaudhary’s admission comes days after the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) opposed the bill. “The terms set out in the proposed bill not only encroach upon the constitutional guarantees granted to religious minorities, but are also against the very essence of the verdict delivered by the Supreme Court on August 22, 2017 in instant triple divorce matter,” AIMPLB spokesman Maulana Sajjad Nomani said after an emergency meeting on the issue in Lucknow earlier this week.Responding to a question in Parliament, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad admitted that so far 66 cases against instant triple talaq have been reported since the practice was struck down.According to the list of businesses, Prasad is set to introduce The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill in the Lok Sabha.The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill 2017, that was drafted in record time since the Supreme Court struck it down by a 3:2 majority in August, has come under fire from the Opposition and various women’s rights groups.The law proposes to empower the victim to approach a magistrate seeking ‘subsistence allowance’ for herself and her minor children. An aggrieved woman can also seek the custody of her minor children from the magistrate who will take a final call on the issue.This law is a non-bailable, cognisable offence and applicable to the entire country except Jammu and Kashmir.The bill seeks to criminalise instant triple talaq by imposing a prison term of up to three years and fine on husbands who violate the law. The proposed law is only applicable to talaq-e-biddat’ or the instant triple talaq through any means — spoken, in writing or by electronic means such as email, SMS and WhatsApp.In August, a five-judge Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court had struck down the practice of instant triple talaq in a 3:2 judgment. While three of the judges declared the practice unconstitutional, two judges wanted the practice banned for six months till the government came up with a new legislation. The draft bill — penned by an interministerial committee was released in record time on December 1.Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh headed the interministerial committee that prepared the draft. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and ministry of state P P Chaudhary were on the panel that helped draft the law. However, the women and child development ministry, which drafted the Centre’s affidavit in the matter along with interministerial consultations with the PMO, finance minister Arun Jaitley, home minister Rajnath Singh and law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, said that they were not approached to be part of the committee.

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Schools await Gujarat HC order on govt fees stricture

The state high court will on Wednesday deliver its judgment on the Gujarat Self-Financed Schools (Regulation of Fees) Act-2017, which has been challenged by self -financed schools affiliated with the state as well as the central education board.Following protests by parents’ associations, the state government had come out with the Act to cap fees levied by self-financed schools in April, which was soon challenged by the affected schools. More than 2,000 self-financed schools either individually or in groups and association had challenged the act. The CBSE-affiliated schools argued that since they submit accounts to the central board, the state can’t interfere in their administrative matters.At the same time, schools affiliated to the state board opposed the move saying that that the government had no say in their fee structure since they were non-grant-in-aid schools. Schools also argued that the charges included extra-curricular activities and only those who could afford the fees enrolled their children, so there was no question of exorbitant fees.Some self-financed schools run by minority trusts argued that their special minority status exempted them from state interference in setting fees. A PIL asked that school’s representatives be included in fees regulation committees. HC had granted relief to schools from filing their fee revision applications to the regulation committees till the matter was decided. On August 31, a first division bench of Chief Justice R Subhash Reddy and Justice Vipul Pancholi had reserved its order.POINTS OF VIEWThe CBSE-affiliated schools argued that since they submit accounts to central board, the state can’t interfere in their administrative matters. The schools affiliated to the state board opposed the move saying that that the government had no say in their fee structure since they were non-grant-in-aid schools.

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Meerut shocker: Ambulance used to ferry alcohol, belly dancers for state-run medical college’s alumni meet

In a shocking incident, ambulances were used to ferry liquor bottles and Russian belly dancers at a doctors’ alumni meet at Lala Lajpat Rai Medical College in Meerut. A department inquiry has been ordered by the red-faced principal after the news broke out.The incident came to light on Christmas Day, which also happened to be the silver jubilee function organised by the old school association which saw several eminent doctors from the 1992 batch in attendance at the college premises, reported The Times of India.“I got to know that Russian Belly dancers were called and liquor was stored in an ambulance van, it is absolutely wrong, it should not have happened at a state run medical college. Inquiry has been ordered into the incident,” said Rajkumar, CMO, Meerut.This is not the first incident of a state-run medical college landing in trouble in Uttar Pradesh. In August this year, the Baba Raghav Das Medical College and Hospital was in the centre of news after a number of infants died due to lack of oxygen supply in the hospital premises. Most of the infants admitted were victims of encephalitis, a disease that has plagued Uttar Pradesh for over two decades.

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Asaram Bapu, daughter booked on charges of rioting

Self-styled godman Asaram Bapu, his daughter and 10 others have been booked on charges of rioting and criminal intimidation based on a complaint by the father of a girl, who was allegedly sexually assaulted by Asaram, police said on Sunday.”On December 22, a magazine was distributed along with various newspapers claiming that charges levelled on Asaram Bapu are false, and he is being framed as a part of a conspiracy. After this, the father of the girl, who was allegedly sexually assaulted by Asaram, lodged a police complaint saying although Asaram is lodged in jail, his aides are trying to kill them,” Superintendent of Police (city) Dinesh Tripathi said.Acting on the complaint, police registered a case under relevant sections of the IPC pertaining to rioting and criminal intimidation against Asaram, Bhagwan Bharti (Asaram’s daughter) and 10 other people, SP Tripathi said.Also readAsaram witness murder case: Main accused thrashed by deceased’s wife in courtThe survivor, now 20, was allegedly raped by Asaram at his Jodhpur ashram in August 2013.

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When Hindustan stands Digi-tall, Zeeshan se…

In today’s parlance we don’t start with A to Z. Instead we start from D to Zee. Literally. Where D stands for Digital India and Zee is the medium to spread this message.Future of India is being written in digital cryptography. The country is home to second largest population of cell phone users and this connectivity has emerged as the new tool bridging geographical and social divide. As the Modi government advances the Digital India campaign to tap the potential of cell phone connectivity, ‘New India 2017’ conclave of Zee Hindustan held in Jaipur, explored the scenario and possibilities of progress ahead.“This conclave is a platform to invite ideas and present them ahead of policy-makers,” said CEO Zee Hindustan Jagdeesh Chandra while welcoming an elite gathering of delegate and audience.As the hosts, briefed on concept of the conclave chief guest on the occasion MoS, Communications (independent charge) Manoj Sinha presented the vision of government in the direction.“It’s 75th year of August Kranti in which our freedom fighters resolved for Independence of India, this year we resolve to make India a country that the great freedom fighters had envisaged,” said the minister.He expressed delight that the tele-density in the country has increased from less than 2 per cent when BJP government came to power under leadership of Atal Bihari Vajpayee to 75 per cent today. He mentioned the initiatives taken by the Modi government and assured that in future tele infrastructure will boost development of the country. The conclave was presented by India’s state owned telecommunication company BSNL and participated by policy-makers, experts and industry representatives from state and outside. BSNL CMD, Anupam Shrivastava discussing the rise and downs of the company explained BSNL’s contribution in connecting India, especially the rural and remote to mainstream Digital revolution. “We have overcome the infrastructure shortcomings that the company faced a few years earlier and improved our ranking among top 4 service providers of the country,” said Shrivastava. “We are advancing towards introducing our 4G Volte services soon and continue on plan to connect panchayats with optical fibre,” he added.Speaking at the conclave eminent businessman, CMD of Kent RO systems Mahesh Gupta stressed on the scope of telecom services and its penetration in life of common man, “Mobile phone is today among necessities of a common man. As an industry dealing in water purification we find the telecom technology integrating in RO and other appliances to provide better services to people,” said Mahesh Gupta.Also among the dignitaries and policy-makers present on the occasion were also BJP state president Ashok Parnami, UDH minister Shrichand Kriplani, Agriculture minister Prabhulal Saini, Jaipur MP Ramcharan Bohra, Jaipur mayor Ashok Lahoti and other senior officials and industrialists.

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Centre likely to table Triple Talaq Bill in Parliament today

The Centre is likely to introduce a bill on Triple Talaq in the Lok Sabha on Thursday.Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had, on December 15, said that the Cabinet approved a proposal to introduce the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017, to make instant triple talaq void and illegal.The Supreme Court, in August, by a majority of 3:2, had ruled that the practice of divorce through triple talaq among Muslims is “void”, “illegal” and “unconstitutional”.Once the law is made to make triple talaq an offence, the victims will have the option of approaching the police and the legal system for the redressal of their grievances and for action to be taken against the husband.Meanwhile, activists working for the rights of Muslim women hope that the Bill will further help stem instances of instant triple talaq (talaq-e-biddat).Also readMuslim bodies not consulted on triple talaq bill: Govt tells Parliament In fact they say, since the Supreme Court’s August verdict declaring instant triple talaq illegal and unconstitutional, the instances of such talaq have gone down.Noorjahan Deewan, a social worker who works with Muslim women in the city said since the verdict, they have received three such complaints. “In two of them we managed to convince the husband that instant talaq was not valid and they agreed. Unfortunately, in the third case the religious leaders and others too got involved and said the divorce was valid,” said Deewan.Also readCabinet approves bill making instant triple talaq criminal actShe said overall the number of complaints about triple talaq have gone down considerably after SC verdict. There has been considerable awareness among Muslims about what is acceptable and not acceptable form of divorce.”It is not that it has stopped completely, but earlier we would receive so many cases but now they have gone down. Earlier, not many knew of the divorce but now many realise that instant triple talaq is no more valid,” she said.Also readQuestions on triple talaq in BHU examsZakia Soman, founder of Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan (BMMA) and a co-petitioner in the triple talaq case in SC, said the bill once passed will definitely act as a deterrent. But she fears it may not be enough. “The SC verdict was welcome but it did not lay out a procedure for divorce. The bill is yet to be made public but we want it to be just and fair. The wife should also have a say in divorce, maintenance and efforts to reconcile,” said Soman.(With input from ANI)

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Post Doklam, Indo-China boundary talks on Friday

After the 73-day Doklam military stand-off, special representatives of India and China will meet in the nation Capital on Friday to carry forward talks on boundary dispute. Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) informed that at the invitation of Ajit Doval — the National Security Adviser and the Special Representative on the boundary question — State Councillor and China’s Special Representative on the issue Yang Jiechi will visit India on December 22 to hold the 20th SR-level meeting.In Beijing, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said this SR meeting is not only a high-level channel for the border issue discussion, but also the platform for strategic communication. “In 2017, China-India relations have generally maintained a good momentum, but the Doklam incident posed a major test for the two countries. We should learn lessons from this incident to avoid any further conflict of this kind in the future,” Hua said.Chinese and Indian troops were locked in the border stand-off from June 16 when Indian soldiers stopped Chinese personnel from building a key road close to India’s ‘chicken’s neck’ corridor.On August 28, India announced the “disengagement” between the soldiers of the two countries. The road was being built by China in an area also claimed by Bhutan.

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Four followers of Dera chief arrested for setting coaches on fire

Four men, suspected to be followers of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Singh, have been arrested for allegedly setting empty train coaches in Anand Vihar on fire following the self-styled godman’s conviction in August, the Railway Protection Force (RPF) said on Wednesday.On the basis of a tip-off, four men, identified as Vijay Malik, Bir Sungh, Kanhaiya Lal Mittal and Harjeet Singh, were arrested, the RPF said.On August 25, two empty coaches of the Rewa Express stationed at the Anand Vihar Railway Station were set ablaze by miscreants.Some bottles with an inflammable liquid were also found at the spot which indicated it to be the handiwork of some miscreants, the RPF said.The RPF sought help from the Delhi Police’s Special Cell and a joint team of both the units arrested the four accused.The RPF said that the accused admitted that they are followers of the godman and had set ablaze the coaches of the train at Anand Vihar, the RPF said.In August, cases of torching of DTC buses and train coaches were reported from different parts of the city, following the conviction of the godman in two rape cases, by a Special CBI court in Haryana’s Panchkula.The Dera Sacha Sauda chief was sentenced to 20 years in prison in the two rape cases.

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Post Doklam stand-off, next round of India-China border talks from Friday

India and China will hold the next round of border talks here on Friday, the first after the 73-day-long military standoff between the two countries in Doklam in summer months.Issuing a brief statement today, the external affairs ministry said at the invitation of Ajit Doval, the National Security Adviser and the Special Representative on the boundary question, Yang Jiechi, State Councillor and China’s Special Representative on the issue will visit India on December 22 to hold the 20th SR-level meeting. Ahead of the talks, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told a media briefing that this SR meeting is not only a high-level channel for the border issue discussion but also the platform for strategic communication.”In 2017, China-India relations have maintained a good momentum generally but the Doklam incident posed a major test for the two countries. We should learn lessons from this incident to avoid any further conflict of this kind in the future,” Hua said. Chinese and Indian troops were locked in the border standoff from June 16 when Indian soldiers stopped Chinese personnel from building a key road close to India’s ‘chicken’s neck’ corridor. On August 28, India announced the “disengagement” between the soldiers of the two countries. The road was being built by China in an area also claimed by Bhutan.

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Satisfied with verdict: Anju Singh’s mother on Suhaib Ilyasi’s life term

Anju Singh’s mother today expressed satisfaction over the life term awarded to Suhaib Ilyasi for killing her daughter after a 17-year-long battle.The former TV anchor and producer was awarded the sentence by a Delhi court which said that he “committed murder and gave it a colour of suicide”.Rukma Singh, who arrived from Patna to attend today’s proceedings, said, “I’m satisfied with the verdict. As long as he is convicted I’m fine.”She told the reporters that she had spoken to her granddaughter, who was three-year-old at the time of the incident, and had seen her.”She resembles Anju a lot,” she said.Her lawyer Satender Sharma said that Rukma had met her granddaughter, currently in Ilyasi’s custody, in 2008 on her birthday, adding that she had visiting rights and used to meet her on special occasions like birthdays.Rukma had earlier alleged that Ilyasi used to torture his wife for dowry and later moved the Delhi High Court for adding the charge of murder against him.The high court had allowed her plea and in August 2014 it ruled that the TV producer would be tried under Section 302 of the IPC for the offence of murder.

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Ganga cleaning funds lying unspent, says CAG

The Centre’s flagship Namami Gange project has been marred by poor financial management and implementation woes in the past three years, a performance audit by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has revealed. The CAG’s audit, that covered 87 projects worth Rs7,992.34 crore, found that only eight to 63 per cent of the funds were spent between 2014-15 and 2016-17 in comparison with the revised estimate.Out of Rs6,705 crore earmarked during 2015-16 and 2016-17, the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), the project’s nodal implementing authority, could spend only Rs 1,665.41 crore. This was less than a quarter of the expected year-wise release of funds. “Thus, financial targets set under the Namami Gange Programme were not achieved,” the CAG report said.The report also said that the project was lagging on the rural sanitation front. Except Uttarakhand, the other four states -Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal -could not achieve the target of construction of 100 per cent individual household latrines as of 31 March 2017.The national auditor said that multilateral implementation and poor planning were some of the chief reasons for funds lying unutilised with the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), which is the nodal implementing authority for cleaning the national river. As a result of poor planning and missing of deadlines, large quantities of untreated sewage continues to pollute Ganga across towns and cities along the main stem of the river.”We found that NMCG prepared its budget without any annual action plan. Further, the budget files at NMCG did not contain the details of planned activities and their estimated cost. Thus, NMCG did not follow the prescribed procedure for preparation of budget,” the CAG’s audit report said.As per the target dates, award for the work of all the sewage treatment plants (STP) was to be completed by September 2016, the CAG noted. The NMCG though, is yet to finalise and approve detailed project reports (DPRs) for projects totalling 1,397 MLD capacity as of August 2017. NMCG also informed CAG that there was a sewage treatment capacity gap of 2,109 million litres per day in 106 towns along in the five basin states along Ganga.During its audit of the human resources, the CAG found that except 16 government employees, contractual employees occupied all positions in NMCG and the organization was short on manpower. There was a 44 per cent shortfall and despite an approval from the Union Cabinet, the sanctioned strength has not been increased from 58 to 111.Namami Gange has been a pet project of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and of his two Lok Sabha constituencies is Varanasi, which is situated on the banks of the Ganga.MANPOWER CRUNCHDuring its audit of the human resources, the CAG found that except 16 government employees, contractual employees occupied all positions in NMCG was short on manpower.

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Gujarat Elections 2017 | Congress is a strong opposition now

Congress may have lost, but it has a very strong mandate as the Opposition. Thus despite a loss, Congress has gained enormously in stature. Its vote share and the tally both have gone up in the state. For the first time since 1995, Congress gave a tough fight to BJP in PM’s home state.BJP had claimed it will win more than 150 seats, but the party has been limited to double digits, albeit one short of a century. This is a huge morale gain for the Congress.But, then there is so much that the party still needs to do. For instance, the party failed to cash in on 22 years of anti-incumbency and massive agitations against the government. Four of its stalwarts had to bite dust. As a result, the party has good numbers in the House, but doesn’t have a capable leader to lead the resistance in the legislature. Mohansinh Rathva was assigned the task in the outgoing Assembly, but failed to make an impact. The party may have to look beyond Rathva and the job could go to a young face like Paresh Dhanani whom Rahul Gandhi could trust as his close confidante. Increased tally also augurs well in terms of Rajya Sabha voting that took centre stage in August.Resurgence?Increased tally also augurs well in terms of Rajya Sabha voting that took centrestage in August.Congress failed to cash in on 22 years of anti-incumbency.

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NHAI contractor inks agreement for ring road

Construction work on Jaipur Ring Road is expected to begin over the next week as the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) formally entered an agreement with Haryana based contract firm for the purpose. The contractor firm ‘Gwar’ has emerged as the lowest bidder among 15 companies to have applied for the Jaipur ring road contract and was issued a letter of interest by the highway authority earlier this month.The contract firm already has sent its team for site evaluation, however, it would still take few more days before work begins on the ground. The firm will be under a strict schedule to complete the project in stipulated time. The contractor firm will have a period of 455 days to complete the 47 kilometers long six-lane road between Jaipur-Agra and Jaipur-Ajmer highway.It has been almost four months since the JDA assigned the task to develop the southern section of proposed Jaipur ring road to NHAI. The urban development department at the time has claimed that the work be completed in 15 months, however, DNA in its article published on August 14 was first to report that it would take nearly 120 days before work is formally awarded to the contract firm.The ring road project has a history of being delays, the work has been juggled between NHAI, JDA and private contractors. It has been after instructions from chief minister Vasundhara Raje that the concerned authorities began to bring the project on track. Even as NHAI has been appointed to develop the road, the process got entangled in various formalities. The JDA took time to reach a foreclosure with the previous contractor firm and the issue of EOI by NHAI was delayed for due clearances from the government. The southern ring road is estimated to cost Rs 960 crore and will be completed in the first quarter of 2019.INSTRUCTIONSThe ring road project has a history of being delays, the work has been juggled between NHAI, JDA and private contractors. It has been after instructions from chief minister Vasundhara Raje that the concerned authorities began to bring the project on track.

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My family feels safe in the transit camp: Resident

Most dilapidated cessed buildings in South Mumbai haven’t been redeveloped as residents refuse to move out fearing that once they shift to transit camps, they will never return. For any redevelopment project, a developer requires 70 per cent consent from the tenants. In the Bhendi Bazaar redevelopment plan, a total of 82.2 per cent consent was received. More than 2,500 tenants have been either given a transit accommodation or rents have been paid for alternate accommodation.Kalimmudin Abbasbhai, now resides in a transit camp in Anjirwadi. Before moving here, he resided in the Saifee Jubilee street at Bhendi Bazaar. “I am happy here, the surroundings are better than Bhendi Bazaar. My kids are safe here and I feel like I am outside India.”According to a MHADA report, nearly 1,076 transit camps have been provided to the tenants of Bhendi Bazaar in Anjirwadi, around 550 in Chunnabhatti and 1,200 have been arranged by the trust itself. “Currently construction work is underway in sub-clusters 1 and 3. We plan to complete this first phase of the project by 2019. We are vacating tenants and demolishing buildings in other sub-clusters so that the entire project could be completed in about 8-10 years,” said Abbas Master, CEO, SBUT.In the other transit camp in Chunnabhatti, the tenants say that they got fully furnished homes including a washing machine for them to use. “I stayed in a dilapidated building in Pakmodi street. We have been given furniture and even washing machines from the trust. When I return to Bhendi Bazaar, I am expecting a better life there,” said Saiffudin Sura another tenant.However, in August this year, the trust faced controversies when Hussaini building loacted on Pakmodia street, which was part of the redevelopment plan, collapsed killing more than 30 people. The trust then claimed that attempts were being made to evict people from dilapidated buildings to transit camps.Not lost in transit1,076 transit homes in Anjirwadi554 in Chunnabhatti 1,200 transit homes by SBUT82.2% consent for the project

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Winter session of Parliament: Amit Shah gets royal welcome from BJP MPs on first day in Rajya Sabha

BJP president Amit Shah today made his parliamentary debut, occupying a front row seat in the Rajya Sabha on the opening day of the winter session.Shah, 53, who was elected to the Upper House of Parliament in August, walked in just minutes before the proceedings began. Members of the treasury benches, including several ministers, stood up to welcome him. Some thumped desks and others clapped as a smiling Shah greeted them with folded hands. He then went straight to his assigned seat in the front row.Shah has been allocated the aisle seat right next to the two-seat block were Leader of the House and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Prime Minister Narendra Modi sit. Rajya Sabha members sit in a semi-circle, facing the Chair. The semi-circle is divided into six blocks of seats separated by aisles. The ruling side is seated on the one side of the semi- circle and the principal opposition party, Congress on the other. Other parties including allies of the ruling party or those in the opposition occupy the middle blocks.Also readWatch: Pained by falsehood and canards spread by PM Modi, says Manmohan; Amit Shah hits back Jaitley and Modi have seats in the front row of the first block. Shah has been allotted the seat in the next block where he has the company of Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Ram Vilas Paswan and Social Justice Minister Thawar Chand Gehlot. When Shah walked in ministers including Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha, HRD Minister Prakash Javedkar and I&B Minister Smriti Irani thumped and clapped to welcome him.After he was seated, some members walked up to him to greet him.Also readWinter Session of Parliament begins, Congress seeks PM Modi’s apology over Pakistan remarkThe seat allotted to Shah was previously occupied by M Venkaiah Naidu, who after being elected Vice President in August is now the Chairman of Rajya Sabha. The front row seats in the block next of his has AIADMK and TMC leaders.The seats in the next block used to be occupied by Sitaram Yechury (CPI-M), Ram Gopal Yadav (SP), rebel JD-U leader Sharad Yadav and BSP’s Mayawati till the last session. However, with the CPI(M) deciding against giving Yechury a third term, his seat is now occupied by his fellow-comrade T K Rangarajan. While JD-U members have moved near treasury benches since Nitish Kumar broke ranks with Lalu Prasad’s RJD and joined the NDA, its rebel leader Sharad Yadav has been disqualified. The BSP supremo quit the Rajya Sabha in July, complaining that her voice was being muzzled. After her resignation, her seat has been given her confidante and BSP leader Satish Mishra

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Gujarat elections 2017: Police on their toes in Patidar localities

Even as security has been beefed up across the city and state in view of the elections, security forces and police are taking additional precautionary measures in Patidar-dominated areas of the city.Officials said deployment of police and personnel of paramilitary forces had started 48 hours ahead of voting. A higher number of police personnel have been deployed in areas such as Ghatlodia, Bapunagar, Nikol, Naroda, Thakkarbapa Nagar, Ranip and Gota, which are either Patidar dominated or have a significant population of Patidars. “We have done additional deployment of security personnel in sensitive areas of the city to prevent any law and order issues,” AK Yadav, additional commissioner of police, sector II, said.The Patidar dominated areas in the city such as Ghatlodia, Naranpura and Bapunagar witnessed violence in the aftermath of the police lathicharge on protesting Patels in August 2015. There were complaints of cops forcibly entering many residential societies and resorting to violence and arson.

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Didn’t instruct Jethmalini to use bad word against Jaitley: Kejriwal tells Delhi HC

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has denied before the Delhi High Court that he filed a false affidavit claiming he had not instructed his counsel to use derogatory words against Union Minister Arun Jaitley.Kejriwal’s response came in pursuance to the August 23 notice issued to him by Justice Manmohan on Jaitley’s plea seeking action against the chief minister for making a false statement during his cross-examination in a defamation suit against him and five other AAP leaders. Jaitley, who has filed a Rs 10 crore defamation suit against Kejriwal and five other AAP leaders, had moved a fresh application alleging that the chief minister had falsely denied that he had instructed his then senior lawyer to make derogatory comments. This was opposed by his former counsel Ram Jethmalani two days later. The high court listed the matter for hearing on April 26.In his response filed through advocate Anupam Shrivastav, Kejriwal has denied that he has committed any perjury or made any false statement supported by an affidavit under oath. “It is denied that the Senior Advocate representing the Defendant 1 (Kejriwal) on instructions had used abusive, offensive and per se defamatory words against the applicant/ plaintiff (Jaitley). “On the contrary the Defendant No.1 had at no time instructed his counsels to use abusive, offensive or defamatory language against the applicant,” he said.Also readArvind Kejriwal’s denial of instruction to Jethmalani ‘belated’ and ‘afterthought’: Arun JaitleyThe chief minister also submitted that the Bar Council Rules and the Advocates Act 1961 prohibits a senior advocate from taking instructions in any case directly from a client. “Therefore no utterances of a senior advocate can be attributed to the instructions of the client unless they are received through the Advocate on Record (Instructing Counsel),” he said. Kejriwal said the union minister’s application was “completely baseless” and was filed with the sole motive of “attempting to overawe the judicial process” sought its dismissal with costs.”It is denied that untrue averments have been made in the pleadings which would amount to committing perjury,” he said. The high court had on August 23 sought Kejriwal’s response on the plea seeking that a criminal complaint be lodged against him for allegedly filing a false affidavit that he did not instruct his counsel to use derogatory words against Jaitley. During the cross examination on May 17, Kejriwal’s then counsel Jethmalani had used offensive words against Jaitley.Jethmalani had categorically stated in court that he had received specific instruction from Kejriwal to use derogatory words against Jaitley. The application had stated that in an interview to the media on July 26, Jethmalani reiterated his earlier statement that he had instructions from Kejriwal to use the words. In his application, Jaitley had said that on July 28, Jethmalani had written a letter to Kejriwal. He copied it to the union minister stating he had not received a reply from the chief minister on his July 20 letter.According to the application, in the July 20 letter to Kejriwal, Jethmalani had said “ask your (Kejriwal) conscience how many times you used the word…” Seeking strict action against Kejriwal for allegedly stating false facts, Jaitley’s counsel had said, “a blatant, false and dishonest statement under oath by such a high functionary must attract severe and stringent punishment.” “Committing perjury before this court by making false averments in pleadings is squarely covered under provisions of section 340 of CrPC and the defendant (Kejriwal) deserves to be punished in accordance with law,” it had said.The high court had on July 26 asked Kejriwal not to put “scandalous” questions to Jaitley during the cross-examination in the defamation suit filed by the Union minister against the chief minister and five others — Raghav Chadha, Kumar Vishwas, Ashutosh, Sanjay Singh and Deepak Bajpai. The first Rs 10 crore defamation suit was filed by Jaitley against Kejriwal and five other AAP leaders in 2015.The second Rs 10 crore defamation suit was filed on May 22 this year only against the chief minister.Jaitley, who denied all the allegations of corruption levelled by the AAP leaders in December 2015, had claimed that they had made “false and defamatory” statements in the case involving the DDCA, thereby harming his reputation. The cross-examination of Jaitley by Jethmalani on May 17 led to heated exchanges between them. Kejriwal had on July 24 told the high court that there was no instruction from him to Jethmalani to use objectionable remarks against Jaitley.

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Nirbhaya gang-rape case: SC adjourns review petition of convict till January

The Supreme Court on Tuesday adjourned the review petition filed by one of the four convicts in the Nirbhaya gang-rape and murder case till January.Mukesh, who has been sentenced to death along with three other convicts in the case, had filed the petition.The apex court, in May, upheld the order of Delhi High Court, which had sentenced the four convicts – Akshay, Pawan, Vinay Sharma and Mukesh – to death.On December 16, 2012, six people gangraped a 23-year-old physiotherapy intern in a moving bus in Delhi.The woman succumbed to her injuries in a Singapore hospital on December 29, 2012.Also readNirbhaya case: Supreme Court to hear mercy plea filed by accused tomorrowOne of the accused, Ram Singh, had hanged himself in the prison, while another person, who was a juvenile at the time of the crime, was convicted in August last year and is serving the maximum sentence of three years in a reform home.

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DNA analysis gives clean chit to teacher in minor’s rape case

In a new twist to the alleged rape case of a 13-year-old minor girl inside a Nerul school, the Kalina FSL in its report has given a clean chit to the accused teacher. The report states that the accused teacher is not the biological father.The wife of the accused, Anjali Shukla, now has written to the Chief Justice of Bombay High Court to direct the police for a second DNA test to confirm the FSL’s reports and to immediately arrest the accused involved. On September 29 last year, the Nerul police registered a case against Harishankar Shukla alias Raj, for allegedly raping a class VII student inside the MGM school. The complainant in her statement had stated that she was raped inside the school twice between April and August 2016. The incident came to light after her parents learnt that she was four months pregnant. The incident had led to severe outrage. In the report, a copy of which is with DNA, the Directorate of FSL, Kalina has opined that Harishankar Shukla is excluded to be the biological father of product of conception (foetus). It further states that the victim is concluded to be the biological mother of product of conception.”If the DNA report clearly states that my husband is innocent, the judiciary should discharge the case against him,” said Anjali.

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Since assuming power, Centre spent Rs 3,755 crore on ads: RTI

The Narendra Modi government has spent nearly Rs 3,755 crore in its three and a half years in power only on publicity, an RTI revealed on Friday.According to news agency IANS, the expenditure from April 2014 to October 2017 through electronic, print media and outdoor publicity is Rs. 37,54,06,23,616, according to the RTI reply by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry.According to the information, the central government spent over Rs. 1,656 crore on electronic media advertisements, including — community radio, digital cinema, Doordarshan, Internet, SMS and TV.For print media, the government spent more than Rs. 1,698 crore.On outdoor advertisements, which include hoardings, posters, booklets and calendars, the central government has spent over Rs. 399 crore, the RTI reveals.In the RTI, the the Ministry gave a breakup of the expenditure according to which Rs. 448 crore was spent from June 1, 2014 to March 31, 2015, and Rs. 542 crore and Rs. 120 crore spent from April 1, 2015 to March 31, 2016 and April 1, 2016 to August 31, 2016 respectively.The expenditure was only for television, Internet and other electronic media and did not include expenditure on outdoor and print advertisements.In 2015, another RTI had revealed that the Centre had spent nearly Rs. 8.5 crore on newspaper advertisements for the Prime Minister’s monthly radio address “Mann Ki Baat” till July 2015.

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China claims Indian drone ‘invaded airspace in crash’

China is “strongly dissatisfied” at what it calls an “invasion of airspace”, report state media.

Facing heat for limiting education aid to martyrs’ kids, MoD doubles gallantry award money

The government has doubled the monthly allowance for gallantry award winners at a time the Ministry of Defence (MoD) is under pressure to rollback its order on putting a cap of Rs 10,000 per month on education fees for children of soldiers killed or disabled in action.Those awarded Param Vir Chakra, the highest gallantry award will be entitled to a monthly allowance of Rs. 20,000 now.Also readArmed forces are well prepared for any situation: Defence Minister Nirmala SitharamanAshoka Chakra, the highest peacetime gallantry award winners will now get Rs 12,000. The revised amounts include Rs 10,000 for Mahavir Chakra, Rs. 9000 for Kirti Chakra, Rs 7000 for Vir Chakra, Rs 6000 for Shaurya Chakra and Rs. 2000 for Sena Medal.The notification issued on December 4 said that the amount will be given to the recipients’ widow at the time of his death and she will continue to get the benefit till her death.Also readUnder fire, MoD rethinks cap on expenses of soldiers’ kidsIn case the awardee is a bachelor his parents will be entitled to get the money. According to the notification, the amount will be paid with effect from August 1, 2017.The timing of the decision is significant as the Ministry of Defence has come under criticism for restricting the education waiver to children of war heroes to Rs 10,000 per month which is considered a paltry sum for professional courses.Also readThe Indian Army needs more leeway in internal conflicts
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Gurmeet Ram Rahim’s Honeypreet Insan is broke! ‘Papa’s angel’ says ‘no money to hire lawyer’

In a latest development, Honeypreet Insan, the ‘adopted daughter’ of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim, has written to the jail authorities saying she is bankrupt and has no money to even hire a lawyer.Priyanka Taneja alias Honeypreet Insan, has written to the authorities to reactivate her bank accounts so that she can withdraw money and pay funds to the lawyers. Honeypreet’s bank accounts were frozen by the authorities after her arrest. It was only recently that she spoke about the elaborative escape plan along with the Dera chief and allegedly told police that they made plans to settle down in a foreign country, according to an India Today report.Also readRam Rahim Singh’s ‘adopted daughter’ Honeypreet Insan getting home-cooked food, VIP treatment in jailIt was on August 17 that she chaired a meeting with the Dera spokesperson Aditya Insan and many trusted aides who planned the escape routine and incite violence and damage to the public and private property to distract the police officials and security forces.The ‘papa’s angel’, who went missing after her alleged father’s arrest, was nabbed by the Haryana police on October 3.Also readOh Sh*t! United Nations invites Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, Honeypreet for World Toilet Day celebrationsHoneypreet was arrested for inciting violence and criminal conspiracy in Haryana’s Panchkula and Sirsa after court convicted Ram Rahim to 20 years jail and a fine of over RS 30 lakh for raping two of his disciples in 2002.Around 41 people were reported dead and over 260 injured in the Panchkula violence on August 25. One of the five arrested Dera Sacha Sauda supporters claimed that Honeypreet had masterminded and funded the Panchkula violence in which people were killed.
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Ring road work likely to take off next week

After a long wait, work on ring road is likely to start next week. National highway Authority has issued letter of interest to Haryana’s Gawar Company.The company has received ‘clean chit’ from the ministry of external affairs over a Chinese company’s share in it. Gawar’s engineers have been searching for site for their office following which they will set up a temporary colony for themselves and other employees.The work is expected to begin this week. However, the government may not get the political mileage it was hoping for as the work will complete after the assembly electons. The firm has been given 18 months to finish off the work although NHAI has claimed that it will be done in just a year. First, the JDA delayed termination of the old contract that was followed by China connection of ‘Gawar’ company. The matter was referred to foreign ministry, which gave go ahead on December 1.The four lane 47 km long ring road will cost Rs 1,190 crore including first phase of Rs 960 crore and second phase of Rs 230 crore.The timelineAgreement between JDA and NHAI took place on August 11, following which companies were shortlisted. Gawar company was shortlisted in November and JDA terminated contract with old firm on Nov 4. The matter got stuck due to Gawar’s China connection on Nov 15. Rs 197 crore were released to banks on Nov 29. NHAI finally issued LoI on December 1.
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Nov gold imports highest in a yr

Ahmedabad reported the highest import of gold in a year in the month of November, official data shows.GSECL, which handles cargo at the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport, said that 14.40 tonne gold was imported at the Air Cargo Complex in November 2017, 22% lower than 18.65 tonne imported in November last year, but the highest in a single month after that. With the exception of November 2016, gold imports at the Air Cargo Complex in November 2017 were the highest for a single month since August 2016, when 15.78 tonne gold was imported, as per the GSECL data.Some of the other months in the past year in which high gold imports were reported include May (12.95 tonne), March (11.45 tonne) and February (10.15 tonne).For the first eight months of the current financial year, ie from April-November 2017, 47.80 tonne gold was imported at Ahmedabad, an increase of 31% over 36.37 tonne in the same period of last year.SILVER IMPORTS Imports of the other shiny metal silver, which stood at 25.56 and 26 tonne for September and October respectively, stood at 0.36 tonne in November.
For the first eight months of the ongoing financial year, silver imports at Ahmedabad airport were reported at 116 tonne as against a bit under 12 tonne in the same period.
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New ‘Ajmal Kasab’ exposes Pakistan: Captured JuD terrorist says ISI officials supervise terror camps

In a chilling reminder of 26/11 terrorist Ajmal Kasab’s testimony, a recently captured Jamaat-ud-Dawa-linked terrorist has exposed Pakistan’s terror game.In a video accessed by WION, Mohamad Amir also known as Abu Hamas, confessed that he was trained by the JuD handlers.Amir also talked about how jobless youth were radicalised. The most startling fact that exposed by Amir was that ISI officials not only frequented the terror camps but they also oversaw the camps.The 18-year-old told the Indian interrogators that he was from Karachi and that his father was a retired policeman.Intelligence sources say that Amir is part of Lashkar-e-Taiba’s ’22 anti-India terrorist squads’.Amir reportedly underwent a fifteen-day training with Jamat at Nuriya Bad, near Karachi where fifteen young Pakistani men belonging to various parts of the country were trained, WION report said.The captured terrorist was interrogated by the Indian police and intelligence authorities at an undisclosed location. However, it is not the first time a Pakistani terrorist has been arrested, though it is very rare that a foreign militant is captured alive in Kashmir. On July 26, 2016, the Indian army arrested 22-year-old Bahadur Ali, alias Saifullah of Lahore on the Line of Control in Nougam sector of Kupwara district.Last year on June 21, Abu Ukasha, alias Hanzullah of Bhawalpur in Pakistan was arrested during a routine patrol in Lolaab area. The 19-year-old LeT terrorist was buying groceries when a police party grew suspicious of him.On May 14, 2016, the state police caught a top Jaish-e-Mohammad suicide bomber in Baramulla. In February last year, the police arrested 17-year-old JeM terrorist Sidiq Gujjar, alias Shahid of Sialkot in Pakistan, along with three local ultras.LeT’s Mohammed Naveed, alias Usman of Faisalabad, Pakistan, was captured after he and his associate Noman attacked a BSF convoy near Narsoo Nallah in Udhampur on August 5, 2015.On August 27, 2015, Sajad Ahmad aka Javid Ahmad alias Abu Ubaidullah, a 22-year-old LeT operative from Muzaffargarh in south-west Pakistan, was captured after all his four associates were gunned down during a gunfight at two different locations in Baramulla district.Watch the full interrogation video here:
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Gujarat elections 2017 | File report on Chhotu Vasava plaint: EC to collector

Vasava had also alleged on BJP that the people from party were inflicting atrocities over the tribal people of his constituency. He also alleged that the Vadodara Range IGP and IPS officer Abhay Chudasama was conducting some suspicious survey in his constituency and conducted a search in his house. He put the charge over BJP national presiden Amit Shah resorted to do that becuase he voted in favour of Congress candidate Ahmed Patel in RS polls held in August this year and BJP candidate lost. Vasava sought police protection from EC following to this incident. Vasava had contested the polls as JD(U) candidate in last polls. However, after the split in the party, Vasava, who has proximity with Sharad Yadav formed different forum BTP and his five candidates have been contesting polls in tribal area of state.”
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–><!–end of breadcrumbx–>Gujarat elections 2017 | File report on Chhotu Vasava plaint: EC to collector Chhotu Vasava
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<!–end of artlbotbor–><!–end of artlsocl–>Written Bydna Correspondent <!–end of artlbotbor–>Friday 1 December 2017 6:40 ISTMust readIndia’s 3-year solar, wind energy roadmap to surpass 2022 renewable energy targetGujarat elections 2017: PM Modi rakes up fishermen’s rights, OROP<!–end of artlmustredbx–><!–end of articllftpbx–>The election commission has directed the Bharuch collector on Thursday to invetigate in the issue of Jaghadia MLA Chhotu Vasava’s concern over his life. Six time MLA from Jaghadia constituency and the candidate of Bhartiy Tribal Party(BTP) now, Chhotu Vasava, had posted a video on social media in which he was found saying that there was a threat on his life.According to EC sources, “The Bharuch collector has been directed to file a report on Vasava’s concern. If the report filed by collector indicates that there is a threat to his life, he will get police protection also.”Vasava had also alleged on BJP that the people from party were inflicting atrocities over the tribal people of his constituency. He also alleged that the Vadodara Range IGP and IPS officer Abhay Chudasama was conducting some suspicious survey in his constituency and conducted a search in his house. He put the charge over BJP national presiden Amit Shah resorted to do that becuase he voted in favour of Congress candidate Ahmed Patel in RS polls held in August this year and BJP candidate lost. Vasava sought police protection from EC following to this incident. Vasava had contested the polls as JD(U) candidate in last polls. However, after the split in the party, Vasava, who has proximity with Sharad Yadav formed different forum BTP and his five candidates have been contesting polls in tribal area of state.
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Indian troops on China border told to delete 42 apps including WeChat, Truecaller

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Indian troops posted along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) facing China have been asked to delete a number of apps on their smartphones due to data security implications.Troops have been asked to delete 42 mobile applications such as UC Browser, WeChat, Truecaller, ShareIT, and format their smartphones with immediate effect, reported ThePrint.in. The development comes after the recent stand-off between Indian and Chinese soldiers along the border in Doklam.“Use of these apps by our personnel can be detrimental to…national security,” a report said citing sources. The instructions were reportedly sent to troops on 24 November. ALSO READ Doklam stand-off was ‘safely resolved’ after several rounds of talks: PLA official “If some of them are already using any of these apps, then they should be asked to immediately uninstall the app and format their cellphones,” reads the instruction.”The personnel are expected to maintain the security of their phones, whether official or personal, as well as computers. Such alerts and advisories, especially about Chinese-origin mobile apps as well as electronic devices, are issued from time to time,” an official told Times of India.A fortnight ago, India and China held their first meeting on the border consultation and coordination mechanism here after the Dokalam standoff and reviewed the situation in all the sectors of their border and exchanged views on enhancing CBMs and military contacts.The standoff which began in mid-June ended on August 28 after Chinese troops stopped building a key road close to India’s Chicken Neck corridor. India objected to the construction highlighting its security concerns. The road was being built by the Chinese troops in the area also claimed by Bhutan. ALSO READ China objects to Prez Kovind’s visit to Arunachal, says India shouldn’t ‘complicate’ border dispute

Mumbai: Regulator asks developer to payback money to home buyer for delay

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>When a home buyer approached Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority seeking compensation for the delayed possession of his home, the developer cited pressure from local goon as a reason for delay. However, the authority said its only concern was whether there was delay or not in handing over possession and as there was a delay it ordered the developer to pay interest to the home buyer and also cost to the complainant towards the case.The complainant Pradnya Sable had bought a flat in the developer Kambar Construction’s Ambivali project. Sable complained that she paid nearly 95 per cent of the amount for the flat and she was supposed to get possession before December 2015 and hasn’t got it yet. She sought refund of the money along with interest. The developer agreed to the delay but blamed a local goon. The developer contended that a local goon namely Santosh Gondhale demanded ransom when they started construction. He also compelled them to purchase the building materials and hire trucks, water tankers through him at exorbitant cost.He also started to demand his share in the constructed buildings. The developer claimed that the local gangster shot dead a fellow developer, when he didn’t succumb to his illegal demands. The developer further alleged that therefore, he was under tremendous pressure and had to stop construction work for some time. They did not get any help from police and public authorities, though the offence came to be registered under Maharashtra Control of Organized Control Act against the goon Santosh Gondhale.He was not arrested by police as Gondhale had patronage of Political Leaders. Finally, he was arrested in August 2016 and the developer could start the construction work within next 60 days. They contend that the project would be completed at the end of 2018.The authority held the view that whether the complainant is entitled to get back her money with interest or compensation for the developer’s failure to deliver the possession of the flat on the agreed date, which is the only point for their consideration and answer was in affirmative. Hence, the authority ordered the developer to refund the amount of nearly Rs 7.9 lakh along with interest of 10.15 per cent to the home buyer and allowed the homebuyer to cancel the agreement. Also, the authority asked the developer to pay the homebuyer Rs 20,000 as cost towards the Complaint. The homebuyers had also sought compensation for mental pain, but the authority held that the builder also had to suffer at the hands of a local goon and didn’t award it.

Bananas successfully cultivated for first time in Jammu and Kashmir

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Scientists have achieved a rare feat after they successfully cultivated bananas in Jammu and Kashmir. It is for the first time that the experiment of growing bananas in Jammu and Kashmir has succeeded with precision.“Experimental works involved growing the banana by tissue culture technique at Indian Institute of Integrative Medicine (IIIM) Jammu. The samplings of this high quality tissue culture variety known as Bhim Grand Naine (G-9) banana were brought from Agro Division of Cadila Pharmaceutical Limited, Ahmedabad, Gujarat. The first trial of cultivation over two acres land of Field experimental farm Chatha has been successfully completed”, said Dr. Ram Vishwakarma, Director CSIR-IIIM, Jammu.First cultivation trial was conducted by planting 2000 samplings of banana plants with the narrow spacing in August 2016. The fruit setting commenced in July-August, 2017 while as the maturity and harvesting attained in 13 months.“The plant grew to a height of 6.5 to 7.5 feet and gave yield 20-30 kg per plant and 20-25 tonnes/acre. In term of economy involved, as per market analysis, price of banana in Jammu is approximately Rs. 20 per kg. Thus on an average, 20-30 Kg yield/plant gives Rs. 250-300/Banana plant”, said Dr Vishwakarma.On the basis of market demand, approximately Rs. 2.5 lakh net return can be obtained by cultivation of this crop on one acre of land which is attractive business for farmers of the Jammu and Kashmir as it involves very less inputs but lucrative profit.More than 164,000 acres of land in India is under the banana cultivation. Most edible banana species are widely cultivated in Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Kerala, Maharashtra, Gujarart, Karnataka, Assam, Andhra Pradesh and Bihar. Many wild species of banana are also reported from Northeast and South India.Till date, no initiative of commercial cultivation of banana has been done in Jammu and Kashmir. Scientists said the commercial cultivation of banana in Jammu and Kashmir would be most profitable agriculture business for farmers of the State. This crop will be particularly suit Jammu region. “The next target of IIIM to introduce the banana cultivation in Kashmir region through modern biotechnology approach (Polyhouses) which would be done in 2018”, said the spokesman of CSIR-IIIM.

Robust Haryana braves challenges

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Six months after Prime Minister Narendra Modi paved way for resurgence of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the party, riding on the Modi-wave, scripted its maiden victory in Haryana.The state, which had been a traditional battleground for Congress and home-grown Indian National Lok Dal (INLD), witnessed BJP’s historic victory as it emerged, for the first time, as the single-largest party with a majority in the Assembly. BJP won 47 seats in the 90-member Assembly, restricting INLD to 19 and Congress to 15 seats. BJP had won just 4 seats in 2009.The party then announced first-time MLA from Karnal and RSS pracharak, Manohar Lal Khattar, as the chief minister of a state that had not seen a non-Jat CM in the last two decades. While the victory was a clean sweep, the next three years lent a rough pitch to the maiden government.Be it massive damage caused due to the Jat agitation or an outbreak of violence following the conviction of Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim, the Haryana government came under fire for its inept handling of emergency situations. In three major incidents of civil violence in the last three years, at least 74 people were killed and the Army had to be called in. While CM Khattar faced backlash, infighting among the warring factions added to his woes.Op Rampal: 6 killedBarely a month after it took charge, the government faced its first challenge when the head of the Satlok Ashram in Hisar, Rampal, failed to appear before the Punjab and Haryana High Court after repeated summons and also failed to honour a non-bailable warrant for contempt of court. The court then directed the government to affect his arrest, which led to the launch of a 10-day operation.The so-called Godman remained inside his 12-acre Ashram while thousands of his followers, armed with a huge cache of arms and ammunition, engaged in a violent stand-off with the security forces. The water and power supply to the Ashram were also snapped.At least six persons, including women, were killed in the tense stand-off that ended on November 19, 2014, with Rampal’s arrest and evacuation of thousands of his followers, mainly women and children. He was produced before the court a day later and then sent to jail. Apart from contempt of court, he was charged with sedition, arson, raging war against the state, rioting, and murder.The state exchequer lost over Rs 15.43 crore in the operation, which cost Haryana, Punjab, Chandigarh, and Centre a total of Rs 26.6 crore.Jat agitation: 30 lives lostThe government faced its biggest administrative failure when protests erupted among Jats, who constitute nearly 29 per cent of the state’s population, in February 2016. The community was demanding reservation under the Other Backward Category (OBC).The protests that escalated and spread across Haryana paralysed the state for nearly 10 days, during which property worth several thousand crores was gutted, with Railways itself summing its loss to Rs 55.9 crore. Even as arson and violence spread to various districts, the government failed to take requisite action on time. The Army had to be called in.At least 30 people were killed and several hundred injured. It was also alleged that women were raped by the mob in Murthal during the agitation. The case stands trial in the High Court.The Opposition hit out at CM Khattar for his failure in manoeuvring the situation, even as party’s own ministers, including MP Rajkumar Saini, added fuel to the fire with his provocative, anti-Jat statements.Reeling under pressure, the Haryana Assembly passed the Haryana Backward Classes Bill, 2016, within a month to provide reservation to Jats and four other communities in government jobs and education. But, the Punjab and Haryana High Court put a stay on the Bill. Even as Jats threaten to launch another protest, the demand for reservation remains pending.Dera violence: 41 lives lostIf Jats left the state counting its losses, the self-proclaimed Godmen were no less a challenge. While Haryana was yet to recover from the damage inflicted on it due to the Jat agitation, it was hit by another wave of violence, when Gurmeet Ram Rahim, head of Sirsa-based Dera Sacha Sauda, was held guilty for raping two women followers and sent to jail for 20 years on August 25.This time, the government was able to arrest the Dera head after his conviction by Special CBI Court and put him behind the bars. But it failed to control the violence, which engulfed Panchkula and claimed 35 lives, with the youngest victim being a 16-year-old boy. Six persons were killed in Sirsa.The Haryana Police, led by DGP B S Sandhu, and the government was slammed by the High Court, which castigated them for failing to implement its own prohibition orders under Section 144 of CrPC. The police watched as thousands of Dera followers swarmed Panchkula, camping on roads and parks, a week before the verdict.History was repeated as the mob went on a rampage, torching vehicles, especially those of journalists, and vandalised government property. The government also faced allegations of facilitating removal of incriminating evidence from the Dera, much before the search operation began. It also came under fire when education minister Ram Bilas Sharma visited the Dera a few days before the judgment and donated Rs 51 lakh, which he later withdrew. The Dera had played a crucial role in shaping the party’s victory in 2014.The Dera head remains behind the bars while his other aids, booked for sedition, including Aditya Insan, remain on the run. The verdict in two other murder cases against the Dera head is also expected soon.Improved fiscal healthAt a time when its neighbouring Punjab is struggling to strengthen its crippled finances, Haryana has managed to bring fiscal discipline. The state government successfully brought down the revenue deficit from 1.9 per cent during the former Congress government to 0.94 per cent during the budget of 2017-18. The GDP also improved from 5.7 in 2014-15 to 8.7 in 2016-17, and might touch 9 per cent in 2017-18.Haryana held its first-ever Global Investors’ Summit and brought in investments worth Rs 80,000 crore. With its new enterprise promotion policy, the state jumped from 14th to 4th rank among all states in the Ease of Doing Business rankings prepared by the World Bank and the Department of Industrial policy and promotion.Unlike its neighbouring Punjab, Haryana also set aside Rs 70 crore to provide subsidies to farmers on agricultural equipment, to prevent them from burning stubble and made provisions to ensure the subsidies were deposited in banks. The government also increased the compensation to farmers, in cases of crop loss, from Rs 1,000-1,200 per acre, apart from waiving tube-well bills of farmers in regions where the crop loss was 25-50 per cent.Whether it was promoting cash-less transactions or linking various government subsidy schemes with Aadhar to weed out fake beneficiaries, the government took the lead. It announced that all government payments of more than Rs 5,000 would be made digitally.E-governanceBe it strengthening its grievance redressal system through the launch of CM Window or introducing Aadhar-linked biometric attendance system in all offices, the government, which came to power with a promise of graft-free good governance, took several steps to bring reforms through e-governance. The government brought transparency through the launch of e-stamping and a centralised online system for integration of property registration and digitisation of land records in the state.A web portal, Harsamay, was also launched by the Haryana Police to facilitate registration of FIRs. But the biggest e-reforms came in the education sector, with the launch of online transfer policy, which was later adopted by Punjab and UP government.Women police stationsTaking a step ahead in its Beti Bachao Beti Padhao campaign, the government empowered women by setting up a network of Mahila police stations across the state, with one in each district. The first Mahila police station was inaugurated in Panchkula on August 28, 2015, on the eve of Raksha Bandhan. According to the government, this has helped increase the percentage of women in police from 6 to 8.5.TASKS ACCOMPLISHEDOpen defecation-free state: Haryana became the fifth state in the country to be declared open defecation-free in June this year, after an intensive campaign that included barring people from contesting the Panchayat elections, if they did not have functional toilets at home. A grant of Rs 1 lakh was also announced for every Panchayat whose village was declared open defecation free.
Women police stations: In order to empower women, a network of Mahila Police Stations was set up in the state, with one in each district. The first was set up in Panchkula on August 28, 2015, on the eve of Raksha Bandhan. According to the government, this has helped increase the percentage of women in police from 6 to 8.5.
Online transfer policy: The step helped curb corruption in transfers of government teachers, as eligible teachers seeking transfers could apply online by submitting their choice of school, which would then be issued as per the necessary criterion. The system was replicated in Punjab.
Beti Bachao Beti Padhao: The government hails it as an achievement, stating that the campaign helped the state improve the sex ratio from 850 to 922.
E-governance: Be it strengthening its grievance redressal system through the launch of CM Window — an online portal in all districts — or Aadhar-linked biometric attendance system in all offices, e-Stamp, e-bills, the government took several steps to bring reforms through e-governance.
Minimum education for Panchayat polls: The government laid down a law to ensure minimum education qualification to contest Panchayat polls — Class X for men, Class VIII for women, and Class V for Dalits. The revolutionary step encouraged the inclusion of more youth. SETBACKSJat reservation: Even though the government has passed the Jat Reservation Bill, 2016, in the Assembly, it is yet to clear the legal test as the Punjab and Haryana High Court has put a stay on it. With the decision awaited and Jats adamant on seeking reservation, the issue remains a big challenge for the government.
Jobs for youth: The government was flayed for not fulfilling its promises to the youth, including an unemployment allowance of Rs 9,000 and the assurance of organising student elections in the state.
Pending inquiries: Be it Murthal gangrape, Jat agitation, Dera case investigation, or Junaid lynching case, the government has been under scrutiny for its investigation into many such cases. The cases are pending in the Punjab and Haryana High Court.
Smog: The thick blanket of smog that envelops the northern states every year in October remains a key challenge. Stubble burning is rampant across the state, despite subsidies announced on additional agricultural equipment.
Education: Haryana has failed to improve the performance of students of government schools in the state, with declining pass percentage every year.
River water dispute with Punjab: The decades-old dispute over construction of the Satluj Yamuna Link (SYL) canal with Punjab remains a teething concern, with the main Opposition party, INLD, set to rake the issue until the canal is constructed. The Apex Court has ruled in favour of Haryana.
Stray cattle: The government had announced to make the state stray-cattle free by August 2017, but with all cow-shelters full to capacity, it seems like a distant dream.

Pakistani LeT militant captured alive in North Kashmir’s Handwara

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Pakistan terror factory was again exposed on Friday when Army captured a Lashkar-e-Taiba militant alive in the Magam forests of Handwara in North Kashmir’s Kupwara district.“A Pakistan LeT terrorist apprehended in a joint operation by army and Jammu and Kashmir police in Magam forests today”, said Colonel Rajesh Kalia, defence spokesman at Srinagar.The militant, sources said, was part of the same group which was neutralized by the security forces on November 21. Security forces had dealt a huge blow to the LeT on Tuesday when they killed three newly infiltrated Pakistani militants in an operation in Magam area of Handwara.The operation was launched after security forces received a tip off about the presence of militants in Khar Moholla area of Magam. Immediately, a joint operation was launched by the army, special operations group of J&K Police and CRPF in the area.However, during the follow up moping and sanitizing operation, security forces apprehended the Pakistan militant who was hiding in the jungles after his three associates were killed. The arrest of militant has come against the backdrop of the release of Mumbai attack mastermind and LeT founder Hafiz Mohommad Saeed from house arrest in Pakistan.Sources said the Pakistani militant has been taken away to an undisclosed location where he is being questioned. Sources said his questioning is expected to expose the terror syndicate in Pakistan. “We are questioning him and hopefully he will spill the beans about the plans and designs of the militants”, said an officer.Though it is not the first time that a Pakistani militant has been arrested, it is still rare that a foreign militant is captured alive in Kashmir. On July 26, 2016 Indian army had arrested 22 year old Bahadur Ali alias Saifullah of Lahore on the Line of Control in Nougam sector of Kupwara district. Last year on June 21, Abu Ukasha alias Hanzullah of Bahawalpur in Pakistan was arrested by the police during a routine patrol in Sogam market in Lolaab area. The 19-year-old LeT terrorist was buying groceries when a police party got suspicious about him.On May 14, 2016 Jammu and Kashmir police caught a top Pakistani Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) suicide bomber alive from Baramulla. Earlier in February last year, the police arrested Pakistani JeM terrorist Sidiq Gujjar alias Shahid of Sialkot in Pakistan, along with three local militants from Baramulla.LeT militant Mohammed Naveed alias Usman of Faisalabad, Pakistan, was captured alive when he, along with his associate Noman, attacked a BSF convoy near Narsoo Nallah in Udhampur on August 5, 2015.On August 27, 2015, Sajad Ahmad aka Javid Ahmad alias Abu Ubadullah, a 22-year-old LeT operative of Muzaffargarh in south-west Pakistan, was captured alive after all his four associates were gunned down during a fierce gunfight at two different locations in Bijhama to Panzala forests of Baramulla district.

Kerala ‘love jihad’ case: NIA files status report in Supreme Court

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> The NIA has filed in the Supreme Court its status report on the ongoing probe in an alleged ‘love jihad’ case in which a Kerala-based woman had converted to Islam before marrying a Muslim man.The status report has been filed in a sealed cover as a bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra would take up the case for hearing on November 27, when the woman would be brought before it for an interaction. The top court had on August this year directed National Investigation Agency (NIA) to probe the controversial case of conversion and marriage of the woman.Shafin Jahan, the alleged husband of the woman, had moved the apex court after the Kerala High Court annulled his marriage, saying it was an insult to the independence of women in the country. The NIA had earlier alleged in the court that there was a “well-oiled machinery working in Kerala” indulging in indoctrination and radicalisation and 89 such cases have been reported. It had alleged that this was a case in which the woman was indoctrinated and hence the court could invoke parental authority even if she was a major.The apex court had yesterday refused to accord urgent hearing on a plea filed by the woman’s father, who had urged that interaction with his daughter be conducted in-camera, while referring to the communally sensitive nature of the case and expressed apprehension that radical elements could jeopardise the safety and privacy of his daughter and the family. The court had then said it would deal with the plea on November 27 itself when the woman is brought before it. The counsel for her father had earlier claimed that Jahan was a radicalised man and had links with persons who used to recruit for ISIS. This allegation was refuted by Jahan’s counsel.

12-year-old rape survivor delivers baby after abortion denied by Madhya Pradesh High Court

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 12-year-old rape survivor, whose abortion plea was turned down by the High Court, has delivered a baby through the C-section surgery at the district hospital here.Dr Indira Gupta, gynaecologist at the Khargone district hospital, said, “The girl delivered an infant boy weighing around 2.6 kg through C-section last night. Both the girl and the infant are stable and in good health.” The police were informed about the development and a DNA test would be conducted on the baby, as is normally done in such cases (for the purpose of probe), she said.Advocate Rajendra Singh Parmar, who represents the girl, said her parents are ready to take care of the baby.”Parents of the rape survivor are ready to take care of the infant. But we are looking for institutions or individuals who can bring up the child up to the age of one year,” Parmar said.The girl was allegedly raped by a 21-year-old engineering student, her distant cousin, and the crime came to light when she was taken to hospital for stomach ache in August this year and was found to be over 20 weeks pregnant.A case was registered at the Barud police station in the district on August 24 and the accused was arrested.Her parents first moved the district court seeking permission to abort the foetus, but the court refused the permission on medical grounds. The parents then approached the Madhya Pradesh High Court’s Indore bench.The HC ordered a fresh medical examination, but the doctors’ report advised against the termination of pregnancy.Following which, the high court denied the permission for abortion and ordered a monitoring of girl’s health by medical experts.

An outfall of Gorakhpur: ICMR considers post-mortem of every child death in four districts of eastern UP

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Babies that die in eastern Uttar Pradesh (UP) will have to undergo a post-mortem procedure, a crucial step towards efforts to correct health systems, after a spate of child deaths in Gorakhpur this August, shook the conscience of India.Labelled the Child Health and Mortality Prevalence Surveillance (CHAMS), it will be conducted in four districts of UP including Gorakhpur, Kushinagar, Maharajganj, initially in a baseline population of 50,000 persons.45% deaths (up to 4118 of 9000) due to Encephalitis infection or brain inflammation in India have occurred in UP, since 2010. Most vulnerable to die are children under-five years of age.Initially, the CHAMS exercise will be conducted in public hospitals in four districts and will gradually spread to conducting post-mortem of babies that die at home in the community. “The post-mortem of the baby will be done in a minimally invasive method, wherein biopsy samples of various body part tissues will be extracted, including the brain, kidney and liver. Our idea is to capture the cause for every child who dies,” said Dr Swaminathan.The mystery of Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) in Gorakhpur only gets murkier and Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) aims to crack it by ascertaining it’s causes. “Of every 100 deaths due to AES, in 40 cases the cause is known. Majority are due to Scrub Typhus infection while other causes include dengue, malaria, meningitis and Japanese Encephalitis. Now conducting post-mortem in each death case will be the step forward to further investigate causes in more cases about which we are still in dark,” Dr Swaminathan said.Vital death registration systems are very poor in India. Only 10% of all deaths are ascertained for a cause according to World Health Organization’s India country figures.“Of all the babies succumbing in BRD Medical College at Gorakhpur, very few undergo systematic post-mortem to ascertain the cause of death. CHAMS will provide evidence-based insights on causes of death leading to better intervention strategies on ground,” said Dr Soumya Swaminathan, secretary, department of health research, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW).“After death, the cause is mentioned as cardiac failure or something of that sort which may be the ultimate event but not the underlying cause. This is why CHAMS is required.”She emphasised that obtaining family’s consent to conduct PM on the baby is absolutely crucial and necessary. “This is why we will first start off with investigating deaths in hospital set-up and then move into community. Each district will have 10 to 15 outreach workers who will go until the homes to convince families to participate in the CHAMS exercise. Families consent will be obtained before conducting PM in both hospital and community set-up,” Dr Swaminathan stated. “Before the exercise begins in UP, a pilot will be conducted at Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi. The plan should roll out in next six months.”Conducting post-mortem to ascertain clinical causes of deaths has been successfully employed in countries like Mozambique, Mali and closer to home Bangladesh earlier.

Delh HC pulls up AAP govt for not appointing regular teachers

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Delhi High Court on Monday rapped the AAP Government for not following its directions on appointing regular teachers in its schools.”Enough is enough, nothing has been done since 2011… As appointment of guest teachers is in fashion, so you (government) are also following it,” Justice A K Chawla said. The court said its direction for appointment of regular teachers has been “frustrated” and the rush was only to recruit guest teachers. The judge said the court’s directions are not to be taken “lightly” and asked the Delhi government to begin the process of appointing regular teachers soon.The court said its earlier orders were not being implemented and the government’s “only concern was that contract teachers are to be appointed in the form of guest teachers”. Delhi government standing counsel Ramesh Singh said it was a policy decision which has to be taken by the Lieutenant Governor before whom the issue whether to give extra weightage to guest teachers was pending. It was up to the LG whether he can consider the request of the government or take a different view, he said, adding that the experience of guest teachers should not wasted that is why weightage was being given.The court said it was due to the weightage criteria that everything has been put on hold. “The entire process has been held up due to the weightage criteria. Something needs to be done on this,” it said.The court then asked the government’s counsel how much time will the LG take for a decision and asked him to inform about it on November 22. It also asked Singh to bring an office file relating to the appointment of teachers.The Delhi government had recently informed the court that there was a shortage of over 27,000 regular teachers in government schools here while the present sanctioned regular posts of teachers was 66,736. The court was hearing DoE’s plea to vacate the September 27 stay on the process of appointing guest teachers and promoting those appointed since 2010 in government schools so that it could fill nearly 9,000 vacancies. It had said its interim order of stay will continue.The government had said the stay was causing problem to students who were suffering due to shortage of teachers. The AAP government has filed the application in a pending contempt plea filed by NGO Social Jurist, represented through advocate Ashok Agarwal, seeking a stay on the order of the Delhi Subordinate Services Selection Board (DSSSB) withdrawing a notice on appointment of 8,914 school teachers.The court had stayed the appointment process after it was informed that the authorities have not complied with the high court’s 2001 order. The court was also informed that a bill was recently passed in the Delhi Legislative Assembly to regularise all guest teachers appointed since 2010.The NGO’s plea said after a high court order of April 11, the DSSSB issued vacancy notice on August 7 inviting applications from candidates for 8,914 teaching posts in the DoE of the Delhi government and for 5,906 teaching posts in the three municipal corporation schools here. It alleged that the DSSSB, without informing or seeking permission from the court, had on August 24 “abruptly withdrawn the advertisement” regarding these vacancies.

Govt not to acquire Spike anti-tank guided missiles from Israel, DRDO roped in

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The government has decided to retract the process to acquire a batch of Spike anti-tank guided missiles (ATGM) from Israel for the Army, and asked premier defence research laboratory DRDO to develop it with indigenous technology.The government has decided to retract the Request for Proposal (RFP) to procure the Spike missiles from an Israeli firm, official sources said. The sources indicated that the proposal to acquire the missile system faced hurdles when Israeli side apparently expressed reservations in ensuring full transfer of technology as per the provisions of the ‘Make in India’ initiative. They said the decision to retract the RFP was taken after the DRDO expressed confidence of producing the ATGMs.The DRDO has now been told to work on the project and has been given four years to develop the missile, the sources said. There was no official comment from the defence ministry on the issue. India’s Kalyani group and Israel’s state-run Rafael Advanced Defence Systems had commissioned a Rs 70 crore production facility near Hyderabad in August, anticipating that the Israeli firm would bag the contract. In Jerusalem, Rafael Advanced Defence Systems said it has not received any communication from India on retraction of the RFP.”Rafael has not been officially informed of any change in the decision to purchase Spike missiles. Spike is in use with 26 different militaries around the world, and was selected by India after a long and rigorous process, in which it successfully met all the requirements in a wide variety of combat test scenarios,” Rafael’s deputy spokesman Ishay David told PTI. The defence ministry has been strongly pushing for transfer of technology in procuring various weapons and other platforms from foreign defence majors as part of its broad policy initiative to encourage domestic defence industry. As per the original proposal, India had planned to acquire the ATGMs for the Army at a cost of US$ 500 million.

India’s Indira canteen: The best meal you can buy for 13 cents

India’s latest politically linked canteens are named after a former PM, and offer delicious food.

Abusing SC/ST person over phone in public place an offence: Supreme Court

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court has ruled that using castiest remarks over phone in a public place against the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe category amount to criminal offence warranting a jail of a maximum five years.The apex court refused to stay the criminal proceedings and quash an FIR lodged against a person, who allegedly used expletive and derogatory casteist remarks over phone to a woman belonging to the SC/ST category.A bench of Justices J Chelameswar and S Abdul Nazeer declined to interfere with the August 17 order of the Allahabad High Court which had rejected a plea of a Uttar Pradesh native, seeking quashing of the FIR lodged against him by the woman.It dismissed his plea saying he has to prove during the trial that he had not talked to the woman over phone from a public place.Advocate Vivek Vishnoi, appearing for the accused, said that at the time of conversation both then woman and his client were in different cities and it could not be stated that it was in public view.He said that section 3(1)(s) of SC/ST Act relates to a person, who abuses any member of a SC or ST by caste name in any place “within public view”.”In this case, both persons were in different cities and the conversation took over phone which can’t be said to be in a public view. This was a private conversation. The apex court had already settled what ‘public view’ means in its earlier verdict of 2008,” he said.Vishnoi said the issue involved in the petition was that whether a private conversation on mobile phone between two individuals can come within the ambit of expression “within public view”.He said that by no stretch of imagination, a private conversation between two indviduals on mobile phone can come within the ambit of expression “within public view” and that the charges framed against the petitioner need to be quashed.The lawyer further said that the complainant has made some vague allegations regarding land sale transactions but no specific averments were made which may prima-facie show that offence of cheating and intimidation were made out.The bench, however, refused to agree with the contenton and said it was only in trial that accused could prove if he was talking on phone in public view or not.The high court had on August 17 dismissed his plea for quashing of FIR and stay of criminal proceedings against him saying it was not advisable to adjudge whether the case shall ultimately end in conviction or not.”Only a prima facie satisfaction of the court about the existence of sufficient ground to proceed in the matter is required,” the high court had said while relying on various apex court verdicts.The high court had also said that it cannot be persuaded to have a pre-trial before the actual trial begins and the perusal of FIR and material collected by the police on the basis of which the charge sheet was filed “makes out a prima facie case against the accused at this stage and there appear to be sufficient ground” for proceeding against him.

‘Hooch’ kills three more in dry Bihar

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Barely three weeks after four persons died in hooch tragedy in Rohtas district, three more deaths were reported due to suspected consumption of spurious liquor in dry Bihar’s Vaishali district on Thursday.The incident took place at Basauli village in Vaishali on Wednesday night. The locals said the deceased — Arun Patel, Lal Babu Paswan and Devendra Paswan — all in their 40s, had consumed spurious liquor along with some other men at a local villager’s place on Monday evening.”They complained of nausea, vomiting etc and were taken to a local hospital where the three died. Two of them died on Tuesday and were immediately cremated by their family members while Arun’s body has been sent for postmortem,” said a local police officer.Vaishali superintendent of police Rakesh Kumar said, “It will only be clear after the postmortem reports are received whether they died due to hooch or some other illness. We were told by the family members that they were also suffering from other ailments. An investigation has been launched into it.”Sources said the police are also on the lookout for those who have taken ill after allegedly consuming liquor, though no headway has been made on that front. “One person has been detained for interrogation,” the source added.The locals, however, alleged that the police want to cover up the hooch deaths. “The local chowkidar used to sell liquor and the cops never took any action against him,” said a resident of Basauli village.This is the third hooch tragedy in Bihar, where total alcohol prohibition was enforced on April 5, 2016. Earlier, on October 28, four persons died and two others took ill after consuming spurious liquor in Danwar village of Rohtas while over 15 persons died due to illicit liquor in Gopalganj’s Khajurbani district in August last year.THIRD TRAGEDYThis is the third hooch tragedy in Bihar, where total prohibition was enforced on April 5, 2016.
On October 28, four died and two took ill after taking spurious liquor in Rohtas.
15 persons had died taking illicit liquor in Kha-jurbani in August 2016.

Still buffering! Poor Net connectivity ails India

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Twenty-two years after the Internet was formally launched in India, connectivity — both in terms of reach and quality — remains a huge issue. Only 30 per cent of India’s 1.2 billion mobile users have Internet connectivity, thanks to infrastructure constraints and pricing. And those who are connected are facing poor speeds and erratic customer services.The total number of broadband subscribers — both wired and wireless — stood at 316.48 million at the end of August this year. Staying connected through computers, laptops, tablets and mobile phones is now a necessity and not a luxury. The recent spurt in growth in the broadband segment has been possible only because of wireless technology, mainly mobile and WiFi.But users are still facing problems. Noida’s Shreya said her broadband service provider promises 40 Mbps of speed but it often drops to 1 Mbps, which means even surfing becomes a problem, forget downloading a movie or listening to music. Umpteen calls to customer care representatives do not help as they advise customers to buy booster packs when existing data has not been exhausted. End result: the customer has to pay full bill amounts despite a few days of slow connectivity.A report by Akamai says that for the first quarter in 2017, the average Internet speed in India has grown by 87 per cent year on year at 6.5 Mbps. India and the Philippines once again had the lowest average connection speeds among Asia Pacific countries and regions surveyed during the first quarter of 2017, the report says.India is way behind chart leader South Korea where the average Internet speed is at 26.1 Mbps. However, India gained eight spots to reach the global rank of 89.The situation is much worse with public sector companies BSNL and MTNL which have old systems.These companies depend on linesmen for fault repairs and have no customer service after working hours and on holidays. Many users told DNA they have junked the broadband services of PSUs and shifted to private ones.Last month, Mumbai resident and RTI campaigner Bhaskar Prabhu’s MTNL broadband connection became very slow. He posted his experience on Facebook, only to receive comments from people facing similar problem and those recommending him to switch to a private operator. Someone also asked him to keep his area’s local linesman in good humour by way of tips.A user in Kolkata is so satisfied with the services of Alliance Broadband that he has completely shifted his web and TV viewing to broadband and cut off his cable TV service. “There is no buffering even when I watch two TV channels simultaneously,” he said.In Hyderabad, ACT Fibernet scores over established players in giving consistent Internet speed with alluring data packages. It has become the first company to launch a broadband service with a speed of 1 Gbps.Though the competition ushered by Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio, which solely provides 4G data services, has improved both wired and wireless services. Users nowadays enjoy unlimited data in fixed tariffs. With the rollover facility that allows unused data to be carried forward to the next month, data consumption in India has hit a new high. Main wired broadband players include BSNL, MTNL, Airtel and other regional entities. Main wireless broadband players include Reliance Jio, Airtel, Vodafone, Idea, BSNL and others.”Broadband service provider Nextra used to have bad connections. Till a year ago, its customer service would deal with issues taking their own sweet time. But since the competition has begun, its service has improved substantially. Internet connectivity has improved, too. Even if it goes away, it comes back quickly,” says a user from Delhi-NCR whose monthly data consumption is around 100 GB.The growth in the Internet, launched in 1995, did not kick off initially in a big way as speed was very low, around 56 kbps through dial-up modems. Cyber cafes were the places for Internet access for all in the 1990s and the early 2000.The government stepped up its action in 2004 with the announcement of a policy, which defined broadband as an always-on Internet connection with download speed of 256 kbps or above. Currently, the minimum speed is 512 kbps and the proposal to make it 2 Mbps is pending with the government.The actual growth happened with wireless mode of accessing Internet — 2G EDGE (enhanced data rates for GSM evolution) technology, then the CDMA (code division multiple access) and now, a mix of 3G, Wi-Fi, LTE/4G services.Seamless internet connectivity is far away unless investments are made in improving and upgrading infrastructure, said Mahesh Uppal, a telecom consultant. “Wireless networks have their own limitations and cannot guarantee a consistent speed on the go because of various factors. Investments are not being made by telecom players because projects seem unprofitable at this stage. Also, there is lack of transparency… telcos offer connections to more people than what their bandwidth can support,” Uppal said.There have to be enough incentives to invest in the setting up of any network. Broadband penetration is low in India compared to global countries only because of lack of investment in infrastructure.(With inputs from Ashish Tiwari and Ateeq Shaikh in Mumbai, Sumit Moitra in Kolkata and Rangoli Agrawal in Jaipur)Consumer woesOnly 30% of India’s 1.2 billion mobile users have Internet connectivity, thanks to infrastructure constraints and pricing And those who are connected are facing issues like poor speed and erratic customer services

If you are not serious about children, file an affidavit that you are not concerned: SC slams Centre on JJ Act

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court today came down heavily on the Centre for filing a “half-baked” affidavit in a matter related to implementation of the Juvenile Justice Act and said the government has to be serious about children of this country.The top court observed that an 80-page affidavit has been filed by the Centre but it did not compiled the data provided by states and Union territories and that complete information has not been given to the court. A bench of justices M B Lokur and Deepak Gupta told the counsel representing the Centre that the affidavit should have been complete and accurate and asked the government to also inform as to how much money was lying in the juvenile justice fund of each state and union territory.”If you (Centre) are not serious about children, file an affidavit that you are not concerned about children. We will say Government of India is indispensible and will dismiss the plea,” the bench said. “There are 29 states and seven Union territories. You want us to go through each one of this? You should have compiled it. Why did you do this? Whom are you trying to impress by filing an 80-page affidavit? There has to be some application of mind,” it said.The apex court had in August asked the Centre to file an affidavit indicating whether the state commission for the protection of child rights and state child protection society were constituted in every state and Union territory.It had also asked the government to indicate in its affidavit certain other issues, including whether the juvenile justice boards (JJBs) and child welfare committees were set up in every district and if not, then the districts in which they were yet to be constituted.At the outset, the bench asked the Centre’s counsel as to when the affidavit was prepared. When the counsel said it was prepared on October 11, the bench asked as to why the affidavit has not disclosed about outcome of a meeting held on September 26 and attended by the authorities concerned on these issues. “You are taking it so casually. You say there was a meeting on September 26. You are saying you will not tell us what happened in that meeting when you have filed an affidavit on October 11. It is a big secret?,” it further asked.The Centre’s counsel sought two weeks time to file a chart giving all the details as directed by the court but the bench asked why they need so much time. the counsel said they would have to get in touch with the states and Union territories to get update, the bench shot back, “Don’t you have a telephone in your ministry? You call the state governments and get the datas. You have to be serious about children of this country.” “You should not have errors in the affidavit. It should be complete, accurate and correct. File a complete affidavit. Do not file a half baked affidavit like this one,” it said and posted the matter for hearing on November 20.The bench was hearing a PIL seeking implementation of the Juvenile Justice Act and its rules. The plea has raised the issue of alleged apathy by the governments in implementing the welfare legislation.

Govt considering Baswan panel report on age-limit in civil services exam

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Nearly eight months after its submission, the report of Baswan committee that suggested changes in civil service exam pattern and age limit is under examination, the government has said.The committee had submitted its report to the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) on August 9, 2016. “The Baswan Committee’s report along with UPSC’s recommendations on it has been received on March 20, 2017 and the same is under examination,” the Department of Personnel and Training said in response to an RTI query filed by a PTI correspondent. Thousands of aspirants appear in the civil service exam conducted annually by the UPSC in three stages–preliminary, main and interview–to select officers for Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS) and Indian Police Service (IPS), among others.The UPSC had constituted the expert committee under the chairmanship of former human resource development secretary and retired IAS officer B S Baswan, to review the scheme of civil service examination in August 2015.The committee is understood to have recommended reduction in upper age limit of 32 years to appear in the civil service exam, official sources said. “The recommendations made by the committee including on pattern of civil service examination and age limit are presently under consideration of the UPSC,” Minister of State for Personnel Jitendra Singh had told Rajya Sabha in a written reply in November last year. In a related development, the UPSC has fixed a seven-day time frame for candidates to report mistakes or discrepancies in questions asked in the various examinations conducted by it.

Chandigarh stalking: Court rejects Vikas Barala’s bail plea for fourth time

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Trouble continues to mount for Vikas Barala, son of Haryana BJP President Subhash Barala after his bail application was rejected for the fourth consecutive time by district court in Chandigarh, here on Monday.Both Vikas Barala and his accomplice, Ashish had moved the bail application before Additional District and Session judge, after their earlier three bail applications including one before the trial Court (ACJM) and then ADJ were dismissed on August 29 and September 12. The duo had then approached the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate (ACJM) on October 23 after submission of charge sheet but the application was again dismissed.The two accused were arrested for allegedly stalking and attempting to kidnap Varnika Kundu, daughter of an IAS officer, V S Kundu late night on August 4, when she was returning home in Panchkula from Chandigarh.“In case of subsequent bail applications, requirement of law are that there should be change of circumstances and those circumstances should be such that they were not earlier brought under the notice of the Court. The Defence failed to bring out anything and just relied upon mere filing of charge sheet which does not bring any change of circumstances. We relied upon Bapu Asaram Judgement,” Advocate Manu Kakkar told DNA.Even as the Defense contended that the chargesheet has been submitted, the Public Prosecutor cited news reports that the complainant’s father had been approached by Krishan Dhull, who stood as surety for Barala when he initially got bail. “The bail can be dismissed if the material witnesses have not been examined and influence of witnesses on the release of accused is substantial,” he said.The duo were arrested by the Chandigarh Police in a drunken state and bailed out hours later and arrested again on August 9 after public outrage over the incident compelled police to add further sections in the FIR. Both have been are facing trial for charges under Section 354 D (stalking), 341 (wrongful restraint), 365, 511 (attempt to kidnap) and 34 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). Both of them have been in jailever since they arrest on August 9.Kundu had categorically stated in her statement before the Court that one of the accused came and tried to open the door of the car. “The intention is very much clear if you are chasing a woman in midnight for 30 minutes for 6 kms. In subject of her complaint, she has categorically highlighted that there was an attempt to kidnap her,” contended Kakkar.The accused are now slated to approach Punjab and Haryana High Court.

Medical college owners worked the system

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A five-judge bench of the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra yesterday annulled the decision of a two-judge bench headed by Justice Jasti Chelameswar to form a Constitution bench to hear the plea for court-monitored probe by a Special Investigation Team (SIT) into the alleged bribery case involving retired Orissa High Court judge IM Quddusi and others.The issue that became the subject matter of heated argument between the counsel for the petitioners and the CJI himself was whether CJI Misra ought to have recused from being part of the five-judge bench.Behind the demand for the CJI’s recusal was the fact that another bench headed by him had earlier heard the case involving the erring medical colleges. The PIL alleges that the retired high court judge who was arrested by the CBI had used his influence in the judiciary to get favourable orders for a college.The college in question set up by the Prasad Education Trust was one of the 46 colleges barred by the Government from admitting medical students for the forthcoming 1 or 2 years because of substandard facilities and non fulfilment of the required criteria.Here is what happened thereafter: In August first week, a bench comprising the CJI and Justices Amitava Roy and AM Khanwilkar directed the Health Ministry to conduct a fresh inspection “to obviate the possibility of any injustice in the process.” The ministry gave the college a fresh hearing but found nothing in its arguments to make it change its earlier decision.This is where the rot set in, according to the CBI. The college management got in touch with Justice Quddusi, who allegedly advised them to withdraw the petition from the Supreme Court, which they did.They then filed a petition in the Allahabad High Court, making, basically, the same prayer.In a curious turn of events, the High Court allowed the medical college to be on the list of colleges notified for counselling. The HC also stayed the ministry’s order to encash the bank guarantee.The MCI challenged the HC’s decision in the apex court, which, on August 29, disposed of the appeal after the college submitted that it would not claim any benefit from the order passed by the High Court.Two days later, on August 31, Prasad Education Trust filed a writ petition, which was admitted for hearing by a bench headed by the CJI.On September 18, a bench headed by CJI Misra ruled that there would be no renewal for the academic session 2017-18. It further stated that the bank guarantee that was deposited shall not be encashed and be kept alive. The bench also directed the MCI to send inspecting teams to the Institution as per the schedule to re-evaluate and consider granting the college leave of permission for the academic year 2018-2019.The very next day, on September 19, the CBI filed an FIR accusing Justice Quddusi and fixer Bhawana Pandey and other in a case of corruption.

UNSR’s statement insensitive towards Mahatma Gandhi: Centre

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>India has deplored the United Nations Special Rapporteur (UNSR) Leo Heller’s comments that Mahatma Gandhi’s glasses – the campaign’s symbol of Swachh Bharat – should be replaced with the ‘human rights lens’. In a strongly worded statement, the government here said that Heller, who is UNSR on human rights, safe drinking water and sanitation, has demonstrated lack of understanding.”The world knows that Mahatma was the foremost proponent of human rights, including for sanitation, his unique and special focus. Gandhiji’s glasses, the unique logo of the Swachh Bharat Mission, epitomise core human rights principles,” the statement added.Heller, whose two-week visit to India ended on Friday, said the implementation of the campaign to make India open defecation-free should not be “human rights free”. He claimed that authorities used “aggressive and abusive practices” to deliver on targets to build toilets. The government said such sweeping judgements were either factually incorrect, based on incomplete information, or grossly misrepresent the drinking water and sanitation situation on the ground.The statement said the Swachh Bharat Mission and the rural and urban drinking water programmes fully conform to the Human Rights Criteria and Principles as established by the UN system. Listing its achievements, the statement said over 25 crore people have got sanitation facilities in three years, since the current government assumed office. Over 2.7 lakh villages, 227 ODF districts and 6 ODF states are open defecation free (ODF). More than 77% of the habitations in rural areas have access to at least 40 Litres Per Capita per Day (LPCD) of water supply and another 90% people in urban areas have access to safe drinking water.Referring to the incomplete understanding of water and sanitation in India, the statement says that the UNSR has failed to acknowledge the paradigm shift in national sanitation policy which has moved from construction of toilets to open defecation free communities and seems to be looking at the SBM from a tinted lens. Regarding the allegation about the lack of toilets in government schools, the UNSR’s claim citing a report by a private organisation is denied.It may be noted that an unprecedented programme to ensure separate toilets for boys and girls in every school was successfully implemented in just one year between August 2014 and August 2015.

Are China made electric buses for BEST acceptable to Shiv Sena now?

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Just a couple of months after Shivsena’s Punjab unit chief called for a ban on Chinese products in the country, Aditya Thackeray, Chief of Yuva Sena will preside over handing event of pure-electric buses to BEST on Friday afternoon which happens to have been made by a Chinese company.Interestingly, the bus manufactured by Hyderabad-based Goldstone group is being made in association with China’s BYD Auto Industry Company Ltd which is the largest maker of pure-electric vehicles in the world. The company walked away with two contracts recently outbidding major Indian players including Ashok Leyland and Tata Motors. Goldstone will be supplying 25 fully built electric buses to Himachal Road Transport Corporation (HRTC) and 6 buses to Brihanmumbai Electric Supply & Transport Undertaking (BEST) in Maharashtra’s state capital Mumbai. The electric buses or EV which it is casually called is fast gaining traction as a mode of public transport in the major metropolis of the world as it not only controls air pollution but is also silent on ears.According to political observers, it is very common for the political parties to raise demand for ban whenever it suits them and then revoke it at other times. The demand for the ban on Chinese products erupts every time whenever the tension between the two neighbours rises.Talking to reporters in the first week of August during the Doklam border issue, Sena’s Punjab state vice president Inderjit Karwal had urged the central government to ban the sale of Chinese products in the Indian markets. He claimed that the public was already “wary of buying” China-made products and the central government should initiate measures to ban them to hit China’s economy. “On one hand, China is provoking Pakistan to foment trouble in India, while on the other hand, it was vetoing in the UN in the matter of declaring Masood Azhar a global terrorist” Karwal was reported as saying.

Gorakhpur: 30 more children die at BRD medical college in last 48 hours

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Even as ‘August – the month of deaths’ is over, children continue to die at the infamous BRD Medical College in Gorakhpur, hometown of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. About 30 more children have died in the last 48 hours between November 1 and 3 at the hospital.The BRD Hospital Acting Principal Dr P.K. Singh said that in the last 48 hours, 15 deaths were reported from NICU and 15 from ICU . Even though so many deaths have occurred in the past three months, Dr Singh claimed that they were normal deaths if compared to children wards of any other medical college.“About 40 to 50% children admitted at the BRD die as they are brought to the hospital in a very critical stage. However, we are successful in bringing down number of Acute Encephalitis Sydrome (AES) related deaths this year,” he pointed. But doctors are not ready to buy these deaths as normal. “Such large number of deaths in the last three months cannot be termed as normal. The state government must do something to save lives of children admitted at the hospital,” stated a senior doctor, on condition of anonymity.The Health Minister Dr Siddharth Singh too had termed these deaths as ‘routine’ and ‘normal’ when oxygen short supply tragedy had hit the hospital resulting in 33 deaths. “If you compare these figures with previous years, it suggests that deaths are normal,” he had stated.BRD medical College had hit headlines when 33 children had died on August 10 and 11 due to short supply of oxygen. Eight hospital staffers, including then Principal Dr Rajiv Mishra and his wife Purnima Shukla, and the oxygen supplier Manish Bhandari were held responsible for deaths. They are languishing in Gorakhpur jail. Charge-sheet against seven have been filed by the police while police is awaiting sanction from the state government to file charge-sheet against Dr Mishra and Fr Kafeel Ahmed Khan, then Head of the Paediatric ward.

Dina Wadia, Jinnah’s daughter, passes away in New York

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Dina Wadia, the only daughter of Pakistan’s founding father Mohammad Ali Jinnah and his Parsi wife Rattanbai Petit, and perhaps the last human connection between South Asian arch rivals India and Pakistan, passed away in New York on Thursday. She was 98.Interestingly, she was born in London on the intervening night of August 14 and 15 in 1919. Twenty eight years later in 1947, on the same night, Jinnah succeeded in carving Pakistan out of undivided India.After his separation from Rattanbai and her subsequent demise, Jinnah fell out with his daughter Dina, too, when she opted to marry Neville Wadia at the age of 17. Her mother Ruttie the only child of Mumbai industrialist Sir Dinshaw Petit, had also married Jinnah at 18.Dina who opted to live in India, visited Pakistan just twice, in 1948, when her father passed away and then in 2004, accompanied by her son, Nasli Wadia, and grandchildren, Jehangir and Ness. She moved to New York after the divorce. Nusli Wadia is the chairman of the Wadia group, which owns Bombay Dyeing, among other interests.In 2005, Wadia laid claim on the house where she was born, her father’s most famous property in Mumbai — Jinnah House. Situated on Mount Pleasant Road in Mumbai’s expensive Malabar Hill, the house, now in a state of disrepair, bore witness to landmark meetings between Jinnah with Subhash Chandra Bose, Mahatma Gandhi (1944) and Jawaharlal Nehru (1946). One of Dina’s contentions was that her father was a Khoja Muslim, a community which followed Hindu law and not the Sharia and therefore under the Hindu Succession Act, she became the rightful heir of the property.After the separation of parents and demise of her mother, Dina was raised by Jinnah’s sister, Fatima Jinnah. Dina at an interview had shared that she never shared a healthy connection with her aunt.She added that Fatima Jinnah was the only barrier between her and her father. Dina, however, disappointed Jinnah’s biographers and historians, never agreeing to talk about her father.

India uncles get life for raping niece, aged 10

Two men convicted of raping and impregnating their 10-year-old niece are jailed for life in India.

Rohingya row: Myanmar’s Suu Kyi makes 1st visit to northern Rakhine

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Myanmar’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi arrived on her first visit to conflict-battered northern Rakhine State on Thursday, an official said, an unannounced trip to an area that has seen most of its Rohingya Muslim population forced out by an army campaign.Suu Kyi, a nobel laureate who leads Myanmar’s pro- democracy party, has been hammered by the international community for failing to use her moral power to speak up in defence of the Rohinyga.Some 600,000 of the stateless minority have fled to Bangladesh since late August carrying accounts of murder, rape and arson at the hands of the Myanmar’s army, after militant raids sparked a ferocious military crackdown.The UN says that crackdown is tantamount to ethnic cleansing, while pressure has mounted on Myanmar to provide security for the Rohingya and allow people to return home.”The State Counsellor (Suu Kyi’s official title) is now in Sittwe and will go to Maungdaw and Buthiduang too. It will be a day trip,” government spokesman Zaw Htay told AFP, mentioning two of the epicentres of the violence but without elaborating on her schedule.It is her first trip in office to northern Rakhine, which has hosted the worst of the communal violence that has cut through the western state since 2012, severely damaging Myanmar’s global reputation.It was not clear if Suu Kyi would visit some of the hundreds of Rohinyga villages torched by the army – allegedly aided by ethnic Rakhine Buddhist locals – or if she would be taken to see remaining clusters of the Muslim group, who are living in fear and hunger surrounded by hostile neighbours.Thousands of others are believed to still be camped on a beach near Maungdaw awaiting boats to Bangladesh in increasingly parlous conditions.The Rohingya are hated in Buddhist-majority Myanmar, where they are denied citizenship and widely dismissed as illegal “Bengali” immigrants.Observers say Suu Kyi has chosen not to criticise the army in fear of a backlash from a powerful institution that controls all security matters.The plight of the Rohingya also garners little sympathy inside Myanmar, making any defence of the minority a politically unpopular cause amid surging Buddhist nationalist sentiment.Suu Kyi heads a committee charged with rebuilding Rakhine and repatriating Rohingya from Bangladesh who meet strict criteria for re-entry to Myanmar.Yesterday, spokesman Zaw Htay accused Bangladesh of delaying the start of the repatriation process.Dhaka has yet to send an official list of the Rohingya who have fled since August 25, he told AFP.The Rohingya have packed into makeshift camps on a poor, already overcrowded slip of border land inside Bangladesh.Aid groups say the risk of major outbreaks of disease is high while they struggle to deliver food and basic supplies to the unprecedented number of refugees.

Rahul Gandhi to visit north Gujarat from Nov 9-11

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, who is presently touring south Gujarat region, will visit north Gujarat between November 9 and 11, his party announced on Wednesday. State Congress spokesperson Manish Doshi said that Rahul Gandhi will undertake a three-day visit to north Gujarat from November 9 to 11. He is expected to visit Gandhinagar, Mehsana, Sabarkantha, Banaskantha, Patan and Aravalli districts. This will be Gandhi’s second visit to north Gujarat as he had also toured flood-hit Banaskantha in August.Even as the Congress’s electoral base has seen a steady decline in other parts of the state in the past decade-and-a-half, north Gujarat is one area where the party has managed to hold on to its support base. In fact, Congress had won 17 seats in north Gujarat in 2012 elections, more than BJP’s 15. However, it is equally true that the party faces an uphill challenge in these seats following a string of defections in August.

Don’t have any conversation with me or offer food: Indrani Mukerjea to Peter in letter

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Indrani Mukerjea, prime accused in the Sheena Bora murder case, has written a letter to husband Peter Mukerjea asking him not to offer her food or have any conversation with her.Indrani and Peter who are on the verge of divorce are lodged in Byculla jail and Arthur Road jail respectively on a murder charge.According to report, Indrani was upset as she was being ignored by Peter whenever they were in public.”While you have full-fledged conversations with me in the police van, very often, you pretend that we do not speak at all when we are in the presence of your relatives, acquaintances, lawyers and the media in court,” Indrani wrote in a four-page letter, reported Mid-Day.She also said that she finds it difficult his two-faced behaviour very disturbing, and it upsets her immensely. “I urge you not to have any conversation with me in the police van, or offer me any food behind the backs of your sister and relatives that bring it for you,” she added.Further stating that she was fighting a big battle all by herself, she added, “Every time I see you I feel disturbed and get negative vibes and energy.””In the future, if you wish to have any discussion or conversations with me, please do so in court, instead of the van,” she reportedly wrote. Sheena Bora’s murder came to light in August 2015 after Shyamvar Rai, arrested in another case, spilled the beans and Mumbai police arrested Indrani, Khanna and Rai.Later, Indrani’s husband Peter Mukerjea, a former media baron, was also arrested.The CBI, which took over the case, has claimed that financial dispute was the reason for Indrani to hatch the conspiracy to murder Sheena. The victim was also in a relationship with her current husband Peter’s son.In May 2016, Mukerjea’s lawyer Mihir Gheewala had said that Peter was keen on getting divorced, but the process was halted as the bail plea is pending.In January 2017, after the framing of charges in the Sheena Bora murder case, Indrani pleaded the court to allow her to seek divorce from her Peter.”I am making a new will and now that I am going to donate the money, so I want to know how it works. The only reason I am approaching the court with my plea for divorce is to ensure that there is no contempt of court from my end,” said Indrani, while addressing the court.

DNA EXCLUSIVE: Maha to frame biomining policy soon

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Close on the heels of Comptroller & Auditor General’s (CAG) scathing report tabled recently in the legislature, the Maharashtra government proposes to frame a comprehensive biomining policy for the disposal of ever mounting solid waste stored without any scientific processing on dumping grounds across the state. This is necessitated as about 21,867.27 tonnes of municipal solid waste is generated every day in the jurisdiction of 27 municipal corporations, 229 municipal councils, and 128 nagar panchayats.The state government last week has set up a six-member committee headed by the executive engineer of the Maharashtra Jeevan Pradhikaran to prepare a bio-mining policy and select civic bodies, which have already been shortlisted under the Swachha Maharashtra Mission (urban), to process dumped solid waste through a bio-mining process. The terms of reference of the committee include keeping an eye on the processing of solid waste currently being done through biomining by some urban local bodies.Besides, the committee will suggest ways to reclaim 80 per cent of the dumping ground after implementing the biomining technique.The government’s move is crucial as the CAG in its report submitted in August to the state legislature had rapped the government for poor processing facilities for municipal solid waste across Maharashtra.Urban development department officer told DNA,’’ The BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation had taken initiative towards biomining as nearly 9,400 tonnes of solid waste is generated daily in Mumbai of which 6,400 tonnes remain untreated. A similar problem is faced by other urban local bodies too. Therefore, the government proposes to bring out a biomining policy wherein micro-organisms are sprayed on the waste and land is reclaimed and can be reused. Biomining helps eliminate methane production.’’He informed that the committee will conduct an in-depth study of the biomining technique already implemented in various states and abroad.The officer also informed that the government has already received a detailed report from 81 urban local bodies on the topic of solid waste management and they are under various stages of implementation.WASTE MATTERSAbout 21,867.27 tonnes of municipal solid waste is generated in the jurisdiction of 27 municipal corporations, 229 municipal councils and 128 nagar panchayats daily.
This waste is stored on dumping grounds without any processing, leading to methane production.

Chandigarh: Two brothers convicted for repeatedly raping sister’s 10-year-old daughter

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A Chandigarh court on Tuesday convicted two brothers for repeatedly raping their sister’s 10-year-old daughter. The child delivered a girl on August 17. The quantum of sentence will pronounced on November 2.The case, which led to a huge public outcry, was put on fast track after the victim’s maternal uncle, Kul Bahadur, was arrested on July 18 for raping her. The investigation took an uglier turn when the DNA sample of the baby born to the victim did not match with the accused.The police then formed an SIT. Further disclosures by the victim led the police to Bahadur’s younger brother, Shankar, who was also arrested for raping the child.In her statements, the victim told the police that her elder maternal uncle, Kul, started raping her in December last year and it continued for several months, until Shankar, also her maternal uncle, started raping her. The DNA sample of the newborn matched with that of Shankar.On Tuesday, the Court of Additional District and Session Judge Poonam R Joshi held both the maternal uncles guilty under Section 376 (rape) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and relevant sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act. The maximum punishment in the case is life imprisonment.The city was left shamefaced when the victim child gave birth to a girl in a government hospital in Chandigarh on August 17. The abortion plea was dismissed by a local court and then by the Supreme Court, as by then, the victim was over 30 weeks pregnant. Her mother had found out about the pregnancy only when 26 weeks had passed.The family hails from Nepal. The victim’s parents refused to see the newborn, who was then shifted to a child care home. The legal procedure for her adoption was started and the victim was sent home.TIMELINEJuly 15: Rape case registered.July 18: Accused maternal uncle Kul Bahadur arrested.July 18: District court in Chandigarh rejects abortion plea.July 29: SC turns down abortion plea.August 17: Victim delivers a baby girl.September 11: DNA sample does not match with accused uncle.September 19: Second maternal uncle, Shankar, arrested for rape. DNA sample matches.October 31: Both maternal uncles held guilty of rape.November 2: Quantum of sentence to be announced.

Chandigarh: Two held guilty of raping minor niece, verdict on November 2

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A Chandigarh court on Tuesday held two brothers guilty of raping their 10-year-old niece, who had delivered a baby in August this year after the Supreme Court dismissed her abortion plea, the lawyers for the men said.The verdict was delivered by Additional District and Sessions Judge Poonam R Judge, said Manjit Singh, who is representing the elder of the two brothers.The quantum of sentence will be pronounced on November 2.The maternal uncles of the child have been charged under Section 376 (2) (f) (i) (rape on a woman when she is under twelve years of age) of the Indian Penal Code and Section 6 (punishment for aggravated penetrative sexual assault) of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO), the counsel said.The crime came to light in July when the child was taken to a hospital after she complained of a stomach ache and was found to be over 30 weeks pregnant.On July 28, the Supreme Court dismissed a plea seeking its nod to terminate the 32-week pregnancy after taking note of a medical report that abortion was neither good for the girl nor for the foetus.The child was told by her family and the doctors that she had a stone in her stomach that had to be removed.It was earlier suspected that her elder uncle had fathered the baby, who was delivered through C-section at a government hospital here in August.The twist in the case came this month when a fresh DNA test showed the younger maternal uncle to be the father of the child.The elder uncle’s DNA sample had not matched the newborn following which suspicion fell on the younger uncle who, too, had been accused of rape by the child.Police had maintained that both her uncles had sexually exploited her.Earlier, police had said the girl was repeatedly raped allegedly by her elder maternal uncle for several months.The younger uncle’s counsel, Inderjit Bassi, said she had earlier argued in court that the statement of the rape victim was self-contradictory and victim’s father and mother were not made witnesses.

India uncles convicted of raping and impregnating child, aged 10

The girl was raped by two uncles and the second uncle’s DNA matched her baby’s.

PAAS agrees to no protests during Rahul Gandhi’s rally

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) has agreed not to hold protests during Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi’s rally in Surat on November 3. The decision was taken after a marathon three-hour meeting with PAAS representatives and Gujarat Congress leaders at the party headquarters on Monday during which reservation for Patels and other issues were also discussed.”We have decided not to hold any protests during Rahul Gandhi’s Surat rally. However, we will also not be supporting it,” PAAS spokesperson Alpesh Kathiria told media-persons after the meeting with state Congress president Bharatsinh Solanki, senior leaders Siddharth Patel and Arjun Modhwadia, besides others.The meeting comes a couple of days after PAAS leader Hardik Patel threatened to disrupt Rahul Gandhi’s rally in Surat if the party did not spell out its stand on Patel reservation issue by November 3. However, the crisis seems to have been averted for now.Kathiria said that they will wait till November 6 or 7 for the Congress’s response to their query about how the party would grant reservation to Patels, before deciding on the future course of their action.The issue of police brutality on Patels on August 25-26 in 2015 after the Patidar reservation rally was also discussed in the meeting. Solanki said that the Congress government would form a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to look into the violence , and would also take necessary action against the guilty officials.The Opposition party, which is looking to break is 22-year losing streak in Gujarat in the coming elections, also assured the PAAS delegation that its government would provide Rs35 lakh assistance to kin of Patels who died in the police violence. In response to jobs to the kin of the dead, the party leaders said that it would try to provide jobs to them in line with their educational qualifications.Another issue that was discussed was related to the Commission for communities that do not get reservation benefits. The PAAS leaders said that while the state government has already formed a Commission, only a GR and notification have been issued about it. The Congress leaders assured to provide Constitutional shape to the Commission, and also said that Rs2,000 crore would be allocated for the body.The reservation issue, over which Patidars have been agitation for well over two years now, was discussed for over 1.5 hours, said Kathiria. They deliberated on how other states have carved out quotas in government jobs and higher education for unreserved communities, and if the same canbe replicated in Gujarat.”We had good discussions on this issue, but we have decided to hold another meeting soon,” Siddharth Patel said.Talking to reporters, Bharatsinh Solanki denied that there was match-fixing between Congress and PAAS, saying that in such a case “PAAS would have extended support to Rahul Gandhi’s rally.”Solanki also said that a number of issues that concern people of Gujarat would find a place in the party’s poll manifesto.Key AgreementsCongress agrees to form SIT to look into police brutalities on Patels in August 2015To provide Rs35 lakh financial assistance to kin of deadGovernment jobs as per their educational qualificationsConstitutional status to Commission for unreserved communities and Rs2,000 crore allocationPAAS not to protest during Rahul Gandhi’s rally in Surat on November 3, not to support it either

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