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Ashok Gehlot says IB searched Gujarat hotel where he met Hardik, Jignesh; alleges ‘surveillance’ on BJP’s orders

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Hitting out at the BJP government, Congress leader Ashok Gehlot has claimed that the Intelligence Bureau and the Gujarat Police searched the hotel rooms after he met with Patidar leader Hardik Patel and Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani.”Why CCTV footage was taken by IB and police from the hotel? Is the right to privacy, sole proprietorship of Jay Amit Shah?,” Ghelot asked in a series of tweets.”I met Hardik n Jignesh in Ummed Hotel. IB, Police are checking hotel rooms. @PMOIndia @narendramodi ji Wat is happening in Gandhiji’s Gujarat?. The rooms which have been booked in my name are being checked,” Gehlot said.The Congress leader said that they met them and will keep meeting them in future too. ALSO READ ‘I was offered Rs 1 crore to join BJP’, claims Hardik Patel’s aide Narendra PatelHe also asked if Hardik Patel and Jignesh Mevani are criminals or absconders saying, “If that is so, BJP must clear its stand.””I condemn all this surveillance being done on BJP’s orders,” he said.The Congress had invited both Hardik Patel and Jignesh Mevani to join it ahead of Assembly polls in Gujarat.Meanwhile, the Ummed Hotel did not deny sharing the CCTV footage, reported Indian Express. When contacted, Vikram Singh Shekhawat, chief security officer of the hotel, told the daily, “No room was searched by police but there were many police and IB officials deployed in the hotel throughout the day due to VVIP visits. The police did ask for CCTV footage and, after consulting our top management, we provided it to them. This was all for security reasons.” ALSO READ Hardik Patel’s ex-aide Nikhil Savani quits BJP, says party offering lollipops, fulfilling nothingThe Congress, which is out of power in Gujarat for 22 years, is wooing leaders such as Hardik Patel, Jignesh Mevani who have a significant support base in their respective communities.However, speaking to NDTV, Jignesh Mevani said that he is clear he will join no political party. But he is also clear that he ‘will do what needs to be done to bring down the BJP’ in Gujarat.

Lioness RT wins heart of CM Vasundhara Raje

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Chief minister Vasundhara Raje is so fond of the famous lioness RT at Machia Safari Park that she wants to keep it at the Jaipur zoo, but RT is not proving to be a good mother. Her three cubs are being fed by milk powder imported from the US.Dr Shravan Singh Rathore of Machia Park said that RT is so possessive about her cubs that she does not want to keep away the cubs from her even for a moment.That is why when RT gave birth to two cubs on Diwali it carried them in her mouth for two hours due to which a cub died. The condition of the second newborn female cub remains steady as it is being fed by milk powder.Dr Rathore said that RT had given birth to a cub named Kailash on October 22 last year but due to non-availability of RT’s milk, it was raised with milk supplied from outside. Significantly, Dr Rathore took care of Kailash and its birthday was celebrated on Sunday.On May 12, RT gave birth to another cub named Riyaz and it is also being fed with milk powder.Chief Minister Raje had seen RT during the inauguration of Machia Park and she wanted to shift it to Jaipur Zoo. However this could not be done as the lioness was pregnant then.MOTHER CARERT is so possessive about her cubs that she does not want to keep away the cubs from her even for a moment. That is why when RT gave birth to two cubs on Diwali it carried them in her mouth for two hours due to which a cub died.

Pakistan girl leaves after successful surgery

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After waiting for a medical visa for two years, four-year-old Pari Kumari from Pakistan finally underwent ablepharophimosis surgery in Mumbai last month and went back home recently. Kumari had to undergo blepharophimosis surgery in a single operation due lack of stay extension in Mumbai on her medical visa.Blepharophimosis is a congenital condition where the patient has bilateral ptosis, drooping or falling of the upper eyelid, along with the eyes being horizontally shorter as well. blepharophimosis is an uncommon syndrome which primarily affects the soft tissues of the mid face, leading to the development of blepharophimosis. While there are two types of the syndrome — systemic ovarian failure and no systemic association of ovarian failure. Kumari was suffering from type two.Plastic surgeon Dr Debraj Shome, who conducted the blepharophimosis surgery in a single sitting at Apollo Spectra Hospital in Chembur, said, “They wanted to come to Mumbai since their country does not have medical facilities for this treatment. The family got in touch with me in October 2015 but they were struggling to get a medical visa for her. Finally, they got four weeks’ medical visa. In such a surgery, there needs to be a gap of two to three months between two surgeries. But since there was no guarantee that she will be granted a visa again, we had to take the risk and do the surgery in one sitting.”Kumari from Sindh in Pakistan was suffering the genetic condition of blepharophimosis syndrome. Her father and elder sister too are suffering from same condition. Speaking about the surgery, Dr Shome added, “The condition itself is a unique one and it is a risky challenge to perform two steps together.”Pari Kumari’s father said, “Doctors in our country are not well equipped to deal with these complex problems. We waited to get an Indian visa for months. But it has been worth it. My daughter looks completely transformed. We wish to thank the Indian government and the people of India for transforming our daughter’s life.”THE CONDITIONThe structure of the eyes in Pari Kumari’s case was narrow and could not be raised. A typical surgery conducted to remove the condition is done in minimum two sittings, with a gap of 3 months in the interim.

Mithibai College students take Kshitij fest to children in Tata Memorial Hospital

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>With the aim to brighten up the lives of children waging a battle against cancer, Mithibai College’s cultural festival Kshitij and Life Wins organised an interactive program for the cancer patients at Parel’s Tata Memorial Hospital (TMH) on September 25 at the Choksi Auditorium.According to the college students, they wanted to let the patients know that this was not their battle alone and that people around them are always there to support them throughout the journey.Over 100 patients from TMH between the ages of four to 18, along with their caretakers participated in the event which included included an orchestra, dance and magic performances. The event concluded with the distribution of a goodie bag which consisted of a stationery pouch, sponge ball and fidget spinner.Members of Kshitij ensured that the children received the care they needed during the most difficult phase of their lives. It stood out as a distinguished organisation that enriches lives with tender love and care. Chairperson of Kshitij, Jenil Shah, said, “Innocence is the most compelling virtue of kids and this makes them resilient and strong. Mithibai’s Kshitij wanted to be a ray of sunshine for the children, and we did.”Mithibai College’s cultural festival, Kshitij, will be held for four days from December 7 to 10 this year. Dr Rajpal Shripat Hande, principal, Mithibai College, said, “Working towards a social cause truly reflects the potential and motive of Mithibai’s Kshitij, and promotes team spirit. I wish them all the best for their future plans.”

It’s raining sops in Ajmer

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>On her third visit to Ajmer in last three weeks, Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje on Monday showered sops in form of development projects and schemes in this bypoll bound parliamentary constituency. Raje, after laying foundation stone of modernised dairy plant worth Rs 252 crore, promised to develop the dairy sector on the lines of Gujarat and directed the state machinery to work on production of chocolate in Bhilwara and cheese in Bikaner.Addressing a gathering, the CM enumerated achievements of her government in Ajmer and said that her government would establish a fund of Rs 100 to strengthen milk unions. “Our government has been working with sincerity to increase the income of milk producers and livestock farmers to make them prosperous and happy. In order to empower milk unions, the government will establish a fund of Rs 100 crore. This will help the milk producers to store more milk and also the common man will get good quality milk at reasonable prices. The fund would directly benefit 9 lakh milk producers of the state.”Presenting a score sheet of her government’s tenure to the date, the CM claimed that Rs 6330 crore has been allocated for development works in Ajmer alone and promised to continue development of the region. “The dairy plant will be a boon for livestock farmers. Here 10 lakh litres of milk will be stored and 30 metric tonnes milk powder will be produced per day. Also, 4 lakh litres of milk will be packed and products like cheese, paneer, flavored milk and butter will be produced too. The government also plans to open Nandi Shala in each district of the state,” Raje said.Raje also inaugurated Abhay Command Control Centre which has been built at a cost of Rs 40 crore. She also launched Vijaya Raje Scindia Nagar scheme, for which Rs 57 crore has been allocated. Raje also announced that that the four-lane national highway from Kishangarh to Gujarat border will be converted into six-lane at a cost of Rs 4000 crore. “Also after trial at the Kishangarh airport on Tuesday, operation of regular flights will begin shortly,,” said Raje.SOPS OPERACM claimed that Rs 6330 crore has been allocated for development works in Ajmer alone and promised to continue development of region
Raje also inaugurated Abhay Command Control Centre which has been built at a cost of Rs 40 crore. She also launched Vijaya Raje Scindia Nagar scheme, for which Rs 57 crore has been allocated.
The four-lane national highway from Kishangarh to Gujarat border will be converted into six-lane at a cost of Rs 4000 crore.

Do hazar satrah, BJP ko khatra: RaGa

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi threw a challenge to BJP and said “Do hazar Satrah, BJP Ko Khatra”, meaning 2017 will be dangerous for BJP. Rahul Gandhi addressed thousands at the Janadesh Sammelan on Monday, held in Gandhinagar. The rally was held on the occasion of OBC SC ST Ekta Manch and Thakor Sena leader Alpesh Thakor joined Congress in presence of Rahul Gandhi.Rahul Gandhi, addressing the people gathered basically from Thakor community across Gujarat state, said, “Yeh Do hazar Satrah hai, BJP ko Khatra hai. BJP tried to muzzle the voice of youth of Gujarat by force or enticing them with money. But, the youth have a louder voice. Thy will not become silent and that is the voice of Hardik Patel, Alpesh Thakor and Jignesh Mewani. This is the voice, coming from the hearts of the youth of Gujarat and that is not ordinary one. The time has come that their voice cannot be muzzled by money or pressure.””PM Modi does his Mann ki Baat, but I am here to listen to the voice of youth of Gujarat. Whatever I can do, I will do it from the bottom of my heart. Be it the youth, the farmers, the poor or the deprived people of Gujarat. PM says he did too much for Gujarat, but I would say that whatever development is there in Gujarat, it is not because of Modi but because of your strength. It is the result of your sacrifices,” Rahul Gandhi added.Gandhi also called GST as Gabbar Singh Tax. Taking a jibe at PM Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah, the Congress leader said Modi did not utter a single word on exorbitant profits made by Shah’s son Jay Shah’s company. He also raised the issue of soft loans to Tata Nano Car plant and said the BJP government in Gujarat did not waive off debts on farmers.Rahul Gandhi said the Modi-led central government has paralysed the Indian economy by GST and demonetisation. He also verbally attacked the PM and said that his Make in India and Start-up India were sheer failures.CONG ATTACKS BJPRahul Gandhi, addressing the people gathered basically from Thakor community across Gujarat state, said, “Yeh Do hazar Satrah hai, BJP ko Khatra hai.
BJP tried to muzzle the voice of youth of Gujarat by force or enticing them with money. But, the youth have a louder voice.

Now, forensic laboratories to work round-the-clock

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Maharashtra’s forensic science laboratories (FSL) will soon work 24X7 on the lines of emergency services like hospitals, police and the fire brigade to do away with pending cases and generate faster forensic evidence for law enforcement agencies. This initiative — the first of its kind in India–will help faster investigations in cases of cybercrime, murder and sexual assault where instant analysis of evidence is necessary to track down and nab criminals.“We are aiming at round-the-clock operations for forensic science laboratories. This will be done by filling up vacancies in sanctioned posts and by recruiting personnel on contractual basis. For the first time, we have put a condition in the recruitment of contractual employees stipulating that they may also have to work at night,” a senior home department official told DNA.Maharashtra has a state-level forensic science laboratory in Mumbai and seven across the state (Nagpur, Pune, Nashik, Amravati, Nanded, Kolhapur and Aurangabad).He added that they were planning to start work in a second shift in these establishments and gradually scale it up to 24X7 operations. “The capacity of the machinery and equipment in our labs is under-utilised. This increase in working hours will ensure their optimum utilization,” the official said.An official from the FSL said they planned to begin this with a 24X7 functioning for the clinical toxicology section. “The analysis by this department is also necessary in cases where people have ingested poisons.

Thane cops nab one more in MOFA case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Local Crime Branch (LCB) of the Thane Rural police has arrested one more partner of the Tanvi Construction firm in Kashimira on alleged charges of taking money from hundreds of home buyers and failing to hand over flats in time. Another accused, Bhupat Lukhi, was arrested earlier, while Dahyabhai Sutaria who has also been named in the FIR is yet to be arrested. The police arrested Sangeeta Hegde, partner in the firm, late on Sunday night.According to the police, hundreds of investors and buyers had invested in the project and were promised possession of flats in 2013. The project, Tanvi Eminence, a two-phase project of 22 storeys was launched in 2010. The work was completed till 10 floors after which the construction came to a halt in 2013. Fed up with false promises from the builders, disgruntled buyers launched a protest against the builders in Kashimira last month.Superintendent of Police, Thane Rural, Mahesh Patil said, “We have arrested Hegde under sections of Maharashtra Ownership Flats (Regulation of the promotion of construction, sale, management and transfer) Act (MOFA) and for cheating and forgery sections of the Indian Penal Code. Hegde has been remanded to police custody till October 24.”Tarun Shah, one of the buyers alleged, “More than 400 people have been affected and people have invested more Rs 200 crore. Initially it was only Sangeeta and her husband Vijay Kumar who were associated with the company but later on they involved a few diamond merchants in the project.”

During Diwali, female cops fail to nab eve-teasers

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Mahila Police decoy team, which was formed to nab eve-teasers during Diwali, could not register a case throughout the festive season. The reason: Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally kept the entire force occupied in Bhavnagar.The idea of the decoy teams stemmed from Navratri this year. The cops, dressed in traditional attires, had branched out to various garba events and parties in the city and kept an eye on eve-teasers, so women could enjoy the festivities. In the nine-night drive, the teams caught more than 70 people for harassing women. The drive gained momentum in the city with its steady success. The idea was to continue the drive during Diwali too.Around 10 teams were formed by the department, to be deployed in the city during Diwali. But unfortunately, the plan was shelved because of the security needs during the PM visit. According to Mahila police officials, the teams were ready to roll but were called on to tighten security for the bandobast.

GST: State allows contractors to escalate contract bill by 5%

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After the additional burden of Goods and Service Tax (GST) and the fluctuation in fuel prices, Maharashtra government has decided to permit contractors to submit escalated bills with variation of 5%, so that contractors will not face any major financial losses.The civil and road contractors in Mahrashtra had refused to undertake new contracts and continue with the ongoing work because of the extra burden of GST and fluctuating prices of diesel and petrol.State’s public works department (PWD) on Monday issued the notification permitting contractors to submit the fresh bills with the variation of 5%. “We had asked our all district chief engineers to call the meeting with the representatives of contractors and assistant/joint commissioner of GST and decided the settlement procedure on claim on account burden due to GST. The chief engineer as the professional of head of the respective district has to carry out this work effectively. If some issues prop up regarding implementation of contract work agreement, they have to consult with the government immediately,” said official from PWD on condition of anonymity.“We received several complaints from contractors that due to the GST and flue prices, the prices of bitumen, concrete, steel and cement has been increased drastically that additional cost has to be paid to them. However, the contract work amount that can be either paid or recovered if work amount goes down. The price adjustment in tender will be separately attached to tender documents,” stated in the circular.“As per the government norms, price escalation cannot be done if the work period is for only one year. Therefore, we have decided to change the work complete limit more than year so that the contractors can avail the benefit of change in rule. Nevertheless, the contractors who have undertaken the potholes repairing work cannot push their work limit more than year. They have to complete the work as per the agreement only,” said senior official from the PWD.IN THE PASTThe civil and road contractors in Mahrashtra had refused to undertake new contracts and continue with the ongoing work because of the extra burden of GST and fluctuating prices of diesel and petrol.

CM making min progress cards to decide on cabinet reshuffle

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As the state government celebrates its three years in office on October 31, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has prepared a progress card for every member of his council of ministers. These progress cards will decide the cabinet reshuffle.Fadnavis had issued letters to all the ministers asking for five achievements of their departments, five such decisions that have benefited people the most.Sources told DNA that after receiving these reports from all the ministers, Fadnavis asked his team of experts to analyse how far these decisions have brought about changes in the lives of people. On the basis of this analysis, Fadnavis has prepared a progress card of his ministers. A senior leader said that factors such as the minister and department’s image in the public, accountability to people, quick response at all levels, and image perceived through media reports, also influenced the progress cards. The reshuffle is expected to happen in November, after Fadnavis completes three years in office.Sources within BJP said that many ministers who did not visit the BJP state head quarters soon after becoming ministers are now frequently seen at the BJP office.The progress card categorises the ministers in three categories based on their performance. The ministers who have poor performance or whose departments were in the headlines for negative reasons would be cut to size during the reshuffle.Meanwhile, a possible induction of Narayan Rane has sent shock waves through Shiv Sena, BJP’s biggest alliance partner. So far, Shiv Sena has chosen to ignore Rane whenever a question regarding him is posed by the media. The same was evident when Sena ministers met Fadnavis after the stampede at Elphinstone Road station and when Uddhav Thackeray addressed a press conference. However, Rane’s induction seems certain as Fadnavis stated last week, “Rane would be given due respect during the reshuffle.”A minister of state considered to be close to Fadnavis is seen at BJP state headquarters in Nariman Point these days. A minister whose department constantly attracted negative headlines has also been spotted at the BJP office recently. A few aspirants who have been MLAs for more than two terms were also seen at the BJP headquarters frequently.WHILE IRON IS HOTSources within BJP said that a few MLAs are lobbying via the party route and have been meeting party president Raosaheb Danve whenever he visits the party office. According to party insiders, the machinery is busy developing effective ways to communicate to the people on the Fadnavis government and party’s performance over the past three years.

2 shot dead, one hurt in separate incidents; police probe link

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Residents of north-east Delhi’s Bhajanpura area were woken up by the shocking sound of bullets on Sunday night, when four armed assailants fired over a dozen rounds at two persons. While one of the victims died on the spot, the other one is recuperating at a city hospital. While police were exploring the personal enmity angle, locals alleged that this might have been a result of a gang war. Just as the cops were examining the crime scene, another such incident was reported from the Vijay Park area, where a 24-year-old man died after a dozen bullets were fired at him.According to the police, in the first incident, victims Mohammad Wajid and Faiz were walking back home around 10 pm on Sunday when four persons showered bullets on them. Before the duo could even react, they collapsed on the ground. The incident took place in Lane Number-7 in Yamuna Vihar.The four armed assailants were on two motorcycles. Wajid is stated to have received eight bullet wounds, whereas Faiz sustained around four bullet injuries. The duo were rushed to the GTB hospital, where Wajid was declared dead on arrival. He worked as a property dealer in the area and has criminal cases registered against him.In the second incident, one Aarif, 24, was sleeping at his home in the Vijay Park area when he received a call and stepped out. The moment he came out, bullets were rained at him, leading to an instant death. Aarif is stated to have received around 14 bullet wounds.The assailant apparently took advantage of the mob rushing to the spot and escaped. The incident has been captured on CCTV cameras in the area. The police are now investigating whether the two incidents were linked.FATEFUL EVENTSIn the first incident, victims were walking back home when four persons showered bullets on them In the second incident, the deceased was sleeping at his home when he received a call and stepped out. The moment he came out, bullets were rained at him, leading to an instant death

Woman dies of dengue, 650 new cases in a week

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In yet another dengue death in the city, the wife of a CATS ambulance worker lost her life on Monday, taking the death toll to six. The official figure, however, remains three as in its October third week report, the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) has not acknowledged the two deaths that took place at the Lok Nayak Hospital. But the hospital’s Medical Superintendent has confirmed the two deaths.Susheela, 55, died of dengue in Narela. Locals claimed that there have been six dengue deaths in the area in the last few days, though the official figure stands at only three, and two of them are from other states.”She had not been keeping well for the last few days. Her blood report showed 80,000 platelet count, after which we rushed her to the Satyawadi Raja Harishchandra Hospital. She died of a low platelet count even before the second report came out. We have had six deaths in the area but there has been no help, so far,” said Brahmadutt, Susheela’s husband.The mosquito-borne disease had claimed this year’s first victim on August 1, when a 12-year-old boy died of dengue shock syndrome at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital (SGRH). Then Meena Devi, 49, from Karawal Nagar, died at SGRH on September 2, and Rhoda Daimai, 26, from Manipur died at the Holy Family Hospital on August 27. It, however, took two months for the civic body to confirm the deaths.The number of dengue cases reported this month till October 21 stands at 1,077, taking the total number of people affected by the vector-borne disease to 5,870.Of the total cases, 2,884 were residents of Delhi while the rest were from other states. Of these 2,884 Delhi cases, 1,077 were reported this month, and 650 in the last one week of October. Of these, 320 were from Delhi and 330 from other states.Cases of vector-borne diseases are usually reported between mid-July and November-end.

Doctors take out 3-inch long screw from boy’s stomach in Rajasthan

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Dula Ram and his wife Sharda Devi, a couple from Singhi Bas Village in Deedwana were panic-stricken after their one-year-old son Devesh swallowed a three-inch long screw while playing with it. When Dula Ram took the little one to doctors in Deedwana and Jaipur, they suggested him an open surgery as the only option to take the screw out.But in a miracle of a sort, doctors at a hospital in the state capital Jaipur successfully took out the screw without any open surgery. Importantly, the child did not have to stay in the hospital, the process did not involve any blood loss and the expenditure for the entire process cost the family only Rs3.5 thousand.“We took him to doctor in Deedwana and he said that it could be taken out by open surgery only. Expense for the surgery was estimated around Rs50,000, which was difficult for me to afford,” Dula Ram told DNA.“It was very risky, during the investigation we found that the screw was slightly bigger,” said Dr Saket Agrawal, Gastroenterologist at Narayana Hospital. “ The screw was trapped in the small intestine, at the junction slightly above the small intestine and large intestine. It could tear the intestine, leading to intestinal bleeding, which could be proved life-threatening for the kid. For this reason it was almost impossible to take it out without open surgery. But we decided to go for endoscopic technique,” Dr Saket added.The team of doctors, with the help of telescope, angulate the screw carefully and after a two and half hour long process, successfully took out the screw from the kid’s intestine. “Holding the screw was a great challenge as it was stuck at Ileocecal Valve (a sphincter muscle valve that separates the small intestine and the large intestine). It has a high risk of internal bleeding involved as any effort to push or pull the screw could damage the inner layer of intestine,” said Dr Saket.Devesh is completely healthy after the operation and was discharged within two hours.

Dineshwar Sharma, Rahul Gandhi in Gujarat, GST in real estate, Vodafone India and Cristiano Ronaldo: DNA morning must reads

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Dineshwar Sharma appointed as J&K talks interlocutor, Congress calls it failureThe Narendra Modi on Monday appointed former Intelligence Bureau Chief Dineshwar Sharma as the interlocutor for the Jammu and Kahsmir peace talks. The dialogue bid comes nine weeks after PM Modi’s Red Fort speech on Independence Day where he said that ‘Kashmir’s problem can be solved only by embracing its people, not with goli (bullets) or gaali (abuses).’ However, the Opposition has called it a failure of government’s ‘muscular approach’. “After having failed miserably” in Kashmir, the government had finally admitted its “blunder”, former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said. Read full story here’Do Hazar Satrah, BJP Ko Khatra’: Barbs fly as Rahul Gandhi campaigns in GujaratCongress leader Rahul Gandhi’s poll campaign on Monday sparked a war of words, some of them inspired by the Bollywood, with the BJP — between Gujarat to Delhi. Addressing a rally in Gandhinagar, Rahul said, “Do Hazar Satrah, BJP Ko Khatra (2017 is dangerous for BJP).” He also said GST was like “Gabbar Singh Tax”. In Delhi, BJP leader and Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad described Rahul’s party as “Dramebaaz Party Number One”. Another Union Minister, Dharmendra Pradhan, said Rahul is a “frustrated” man. Read full story hereDNA Exclusive: Maharashtra government opposes GST in real estateThe government of Maharashtra has opposed the inclusion of real estate in Goods and Services Tax and does not want any decision in this matter to be taken in a hurry. The government has argued that a decision should be taken at the GST Council after an in-depth study and after weighing its impact on state finances. State Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar told DNA he had sent a letter to the Centre on this. At present, the GST rate on under construction real estate projects stands at 18 per cent. Read full story hereNo Vishakha panel, Bombay High Court fines VodafoneIn a significant order, the Bombay High Court has asked telecom company Vodafone-Essar Limited, which is now Vodafone, to deposit an amount of Rs 50,000 with the War Widow’s Association, New Delhi, for its failure to constitute a Complaints Committee as per Vishakha guidelines to look into a complaint of sexual harassment at workplace in the year 2000, when a former employee raised the issue. Read full story hereBest FIFA Football Awards 2017: Cristiano Ronaldo beats Lionel Messi, Neymar to win player of the yearCristiano Ronaldo won the Best FIFA Men’s Player Award for the second year while Lieke Martens was crowned women’s player of the year. Ronaldo left Lionel Messi and Neymar behind to remain the only player in the world to have won the award. He had also triumphed in its inaugural outing in January. Martens picked up the Fifa award after winning the European Championship with the Netherlands. Read full story here

Ex- speaker joins Ninder farmers

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The ongoing “Zameen Samadhi Satyagrah” at Ninder continues to garner support from political and social corridors. On its 22nd day, the demonstration was visited by former assembly speaker Sumitra Singh and representatives of several social organisations. The former speaker came down heavily on state government’s apathy towards the agitating farmers“It’s appalling that the farmers are compelled to stand in living graves and the government continues to ignore the protest taking place at state capital,” said Sumitra Singh assuring her support to the agitating farmers.There are over 1350 men and women staging Satyagrah at Ninder against acquisition of land by Jaipur Development Authority (JDA) for a mega residential scheme in the area. These farmers stand in pits in reflection of their attachment to the land, meanwhile the authority claims to have it acquired years ago. Talks between the representatives of agitating farmers and government authorities on the issue have been on hold inconclusively and now the JDA is expected to proceed with forcefully taking possession of the acquired land.The agitating farmers are though resolve to fight against any such move. “We have asked for a re-survey of the area, the government is shying away from it because a realistic survey will counter the claims made by JDA while acquiring the land,” says Nagendra Singh Shekhawat, leader of the agitating farmers. The JDA has planned a mega residential scheme at Ninder for which 1350 bighas of land has been acquired.FISCAL TUG-OF-WAR AMID JDA-JMCThe Jaipur Municipal Corporation (JMC) has been building pressure for sanction of the payment due to it from Jaipur Development Authority (JDA). The issue has seen no-progress despite written communication over it by Jaipur mayor Ashok Lahoti and urban development minister Srichand Kriplani. There are various issues related to revenue sharing of auctioned plots and maintenance funds for transferred colonies that remain bone of contention between the two bodies. The issue is expected to gain further momentum over the next coming days as revenue scenario at the municipal corporation continues to deteriorate. MORE ‘ACTION’As the Diwali festival vacation ended, the JDA enforcement teams were back clearing the Gopalpura bypass of the remaining illegal constructions. Even as the encroachments were removed earlier, there were few balconies, ramps and temporary stalls that were protruding on the road width and were removed on Monday.momentum over the next coming days as revenue scenario at the municipal corporation continues to deteriorate.

Man stabbed over car parking row in Powai

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 42-year-old man was allegedly stabbed by a youth after he parked his car in a football ground at Saki Vihar in Powai. The Powai police have arrested one of the accused. According to police, the victim, Isaaq Sheikh, was allegedly stabbed by Nizam Sheikh after he parked his car at Chandasawali Babadarga ground. The children approached Sheikh and requested him to not park the car on the ground so that it does not get damaged. Following this the accused pulled out a knife and bamboo sticks and stabbed Sheikh. The victim is out of danger and is recuperating at the hospital. Sheikh is out of danger.

17-year-old novelist creates history in strife-torn Kashmir

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>When Class 12 student Rafaat Gilani decided to write a novel, little did he realise that he would be mocked and lampooned by people for trying his hand at the English literature.Eight months on, the 17-year-old has proved his critics wrong by becoming one of the youngest novelists to have lived his dream in strife-torn Kashmir. Breaking from the traditions of a Kashmir-centric theme, ‘The day I died’ is set in Japan and revolves around an orphan boy’s struggle in pursuit of success.”I faced a lot of difficulties in the course of writing the book. There were a lot of discouragements. People mocked me for trying to write a novel. Fiction is a big ‘no’ here. People think autobiographies and biographies are a kind of novel. And if there is a novel, it should be based on Kashmir. I want to try new things and, therefore, I wrote a fiction novel set in Japan,” said Rafaat.Son of a government engineer, Rafaat is a student of Saint Joseph’s School in North Kashmir’s Baramulla district. An avid gamer, he is a computer geek who has always dreamed of writing a novel with a different theme.”Now many of my friends do not talk to me. They think that I have become big. One day I got a call from a friend and he was discussing his story. I told him I am also writing a novel and he laughed, saying, “Have you seen you face?” he saidFor Rafaat, the journey from student to writer was not a bed of roses, but a road full of bumps. From financial problems to publishing blues, he faced many hurdles before the book could hit stands.”I am a student and do not have enough financial resources. I contacted many publishing houses but I found the price very high. So a friend who is running a start-up Paper Square, published my book. Still, I had to borrow from my friends. I did not take a penny from my parents,” he said.Interestingly, Rafaat did not tell his parents about the book till it was complete. “I told my parents casually when I started writing. Then all through I told them nothing. Just 10 days before the launch I informed them my book was ready to be unveiled and they were pleasantly surprised,” he said.Elated at the response to his maiden novel, Rafaat is now working on more. “I am fascinated by technology and wanted to take up computer software programming. But writing is my passion and I will continue it, come what may. I am already working on three more novels”, he said.

BC Khatua panel scripts rules for Ola, Uber

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>There is every possibility that one may not find bigger expensive cars operating as cabs when one books an Uber or Ola. The BC Khatua Committee, appointed by the state government, has scrapped the recommendation that 30 per cent of the total fleet of a mobile aggregator should be 1400 CC and above, and that the owner of the vehicle has the right to decide the quality of car. Not just this, there shall now be a common uniform for all mobile aggregator drivers that would be blue shirt, black trouser and tie, which shall be mandatory.The state government had appointed a four-member committee under former IAS officer Khatua to review taxi and auto-rickshaw fares fixed by the PMA Hakeem committee in 2012. The Khatua Committee report recommends that the vehicles bought for ferrying under Uber and Ola should be maximum of 10 years old.The committee has suggested fare hikes in autos and black and yellow taxis. The minimum will be Rs 19 for autos and Rs 23 for taxis. Moreover, the per km rate too has been hiked by 50 paise for both these modes of transport. Also, they have kept a cap of Rs 14 per km as starting fare and maximum of Rs 38 per km as cap for the mobile aggregators. This would mean that Uber and Ola cannot bring down fares to as low as Rs 6 per km to lure people and go for surge pricing where fares rise upto 4-5 times.To protect the environment and curb pollution, the panel has suggested converting all vehicles under mobile aggregators to CNG in next four years. There are more than 70,000 vehicles operating as mobile aggregators. Earlier, there was no age limit for these vehicles plying for mobile aggregators. The age limit of black and yellow taxis will stay at 20 years.The panel has changed the idea of a driver wearing uniform identifying the company. Instead, they have proposed a single uniform as the committee found that drivers were working for both Uber and Ola at the same time.

Man jerks off to woman in local, nabbed

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Government Railway Police (GRP) arrested a 30-year-old labourer for allegedly masturbating in front of a female commuter in a Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) to Belapur local train.The incident took place between CSMT and Masjid Bunder railway stations.According to the police, on Saturday, the woman had boarded a train for Belapur from CSMT and was seated in the ladies compartment. Around 10 am, as the train headed towards Masjid Bunder station, she noticed that a man who was in the adjacent compartment reserved for handicapped persons was masturbating while looking at her. He later alighted from the train.She then contacted the police helpline following which GRP officials rushed to address the complaint.A case of outraging the modesty of a woman was registered against an unknown person and crack teams were formed to trace the suspect.The police came across CCTV footage in which the suspect was captured.On receipt of specific information, a trap was laid outside CSMT and the suspect was identified as Krupa Patel.He is a native of Odisha and lives on a footpath outside Masjid Bunder railway station, was nabbed on Monday.

Deja vu for commuters: WR gets back old rakes

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It’s been more than a fortnight that 37 lakh people are forced to travel crammed in the rickety and slow moving rakes; and this is because the Western Railway (WR) has brought back the old rakes and included them in their fleet.These are the rakes which have less appealing coaches, fans that hardly circulate air, cob-webbed tube lights, smaller windows and crammed doorways. The officials from WR said that they have inducted these old BHEL-make rakes as the number of daily services has been increased to 1,355 from October 1.“We have 100 rakes in our fleet, of which 14 per cent is kept for routine maintenance. But now we have increased our fleet for operations to 89 rakes,” said a WR official.Until September, WR used to run 86 rakes that operated 1,323 services every day. But as they have increased the number of services by 32, they are pressing the older rakes into operations. For the past few years, WR had been operating only the new trains that can touch 100kmph unlike these older rakes that don’t go beyond 80kmph.“We have to be perfect as far as maintenance of rakes is concerned. We cannot afford more rakes to have technical failures and have margin of error, else we will lose the daily punctuality count,” said a WR official.These BHEL-make rakes are known to undergo technical failures and breakdowns, especially during monsoons. Moreover, the remaining codal life — each rake can operate for 25-30 years depending on the maintenance — is barely 6-8 years for these rakes.

2 students hurl firecrackers at cops for ‘fun’

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Two students have been arrested by the Nagpada police on Saturday for allegedly throwing firecrackers on two policemen outside the police control room in south Mumbai. The accused have been identified as Hannan Sheikh, 23, and Sayed Rehman, 23, residents of Byculla.According to the police, the incident took place early on Saturday when the two constables, Madhukar Gaykar and Ravindra Khare, were posted at the south region control room in Nagpada. The two youths were riding past the office gates on a two wheeler when the pillion rider hurled a live sutli bomb at Gaykar before fleeing the spot. The constables were not harmed.“During questioning, they said that they had hurled the firecracker for fun and they did not want to hurt the officers,” said a police officer from Nagpada Police Station. Both the accused were later released by the holiday court on a cash bond of Rs 15,000.

Former ADM of Ghaziabad suspended

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Uttar Pradesh government on Monday suspended former Ghaziabad additional district magistrate (ADM) for his suspected role in a Rs 27-crore land scam.According to the divisional commissioner, the then ADM Gyanshyam Singh is accused of receiving Rs 20 crore enhanced compensation from the government, through arbitration proceedings presided over by two successive DMs — Vimal Kumar and Nidhi Kesarwami.The scam pertains to the purchase of nearly 1,800 sqm of agricultural land from farmers in Ghaziabad and Hapur in 2013, after it got notified for the Delhi-Meerut Expressway and EPE project, for which they later got enhanced compensation from state government.Earlier, Meerut divisional commissioner Prabhat Kumar had indicted Singh and two former DMs in the land scam case. In the reports, Kumar had pointed that Singh along with others had purchased land in the Kushliya village and got 10 times more compensation from the government.

As Diwali gift, 10-yr-old Nepal resident gets his fingers back

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>For Virendra Singh, it was indeed a ‘happy’ Diwali this year after doctors at the Safdarjung Hospital performed a breakthrough surgery to give the 10-year-old his fingers back. The Nepal resident had lost his hands to electrocution two years ago. A plastic surgeon has now transferred two big toes from each of his feet to his hands.“It was a very complex surgery and took 10 hours and a huge team to make it successful. We had a specialised anesthesia team continuously monitoring the microvascular blood flow for the survival of the toes that were transplanted on to the hand. Any failure would have led to even more trauma to the child. Routine work had become challenging for him and this Diwali gift would now help him write,” said Dr Rakesh Kain, Professor of Plastic Surgery, Safdarjung Hospital.After the electrocution incident, in which both hands of the child were severely burnt, the doctors had to amputate one hand completely and half of the palm other hand with all the fingers. Singh had to quit studies as he was unable to write after this.The complicated surgery involved removing two toes from each of his feet, along with the blood vessels and nerves, and reattaching them to the hands along with restoration of blood circulation. Dr R P Narayan, Head of Department of Burns and Plastic Surgery, confirmed the successful surgery and shared that he intended to bring the hand transplant programme to the institute as many people lose their hands due to electric shocks, accidents, or other burns. Just two months ago, a 22-year-old Afghani student had his toe successfully transplanted on to his right hand after he lost the hand in a bomb attack in his country. Past incidentAfter the electrocution incident, in which both hands of the child were severely burnt, the doctors had to amputate one hand completely and half of the palm other hand with all the fingers.

5 of family die in accident, 10-year-old boy is lone survivor

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A major accident occurred early on Monday morning at Rajsamand which resulted in death of five individuals of the same family.The deceased – three men, one woman and one child – were travelling from Jaipur to Baroda when the accident occurred. Notably, one ten year old boy survived the accident and has sustained only a fracture.The family members – identified as Amrit lal (69) and his wife Suman Modi (63), Amrit’s son Alkesh Modi (37) and his wife Peenal Modi (32), and the grand children Vedansh (4) and Dhanvi (10) – were travelling in a car.“The family probably started from Jaipur late in the night as they were crossing the Gomti Choraha area early in the morning. While they were crossing the area, Alkesh – who was driving the car – fell asleep on the steering. This resulted in the car veering off from the road and smashing the divider on the national highway. As a result of this the car overturned and got damaged severely” said Girdhari Lal, station incharge, Charbhuja police station.As the accident occurred, truckers passing from the area stopped and rushed to the family’s rescue.“The police was informed and teams rushed to the spot. On reaching it was found that Peenal and Dhanvi were still breathing and they were rushed to hospital. However Peenal was later declared dead by doctors on reaching the hospital while Dhanvi was treated for fracture. The relatives of the family were contacted and after a post mortem of the deceased the dead bodies were handed to the family members” the official said.TRUCK DRIVERS COME TO RESCUEThe deceased – three men, one woman and one child – were travelling from Jaipur to Baroda when the accident occurred. Notably, one ten year old boy survived the accident and has sustained only a fracture.
As the accident occurred, truckers passing from the area stopped and rushed to the family’s rescue. “The police was informed and teams rushed to the spot. On reaching it was found that Peenal and Dhanvi were still breathing and they were rushed to hospital. However Peenal was later declared dead on reaching hospital.

Over 100 firms owe civic body Rs 113 crore

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Larsen & Toubro, Phoenix Mill, Sahara Hotel, Lokhandwala Infra, Nirmal Lifestyles, Kohinoor Planet, Apollo Mill, HDIL, Crown Mill, are on the top of the list of defaulters who have failed to pay property tax to the BMC till the beginning of this financial year.According to a list of top property tax defaulters compiled by the civic body, private firms in Mumbai owe Rs 113.25 crore to BMC as property tax. The list provided to the chairman of BMC’s improvements committee, Anant Nar of Shiv Sena, names nine private companies which have failed to pay property tax ranging from Rs 2 crore to Rs 7 crore. Besides these nine companies, 100 other companies have failed to pay property tax of Rs 17 crore.“The civic administration provided me names of only top nine defaulters. I have asked them to provide me details of the other 100 companies too at the earliest. After closure of Octroi, the collection from property tax is the only major revenue for BMC. The civic body should make a strategy to collect property taxes from these defaulters. I will pursue this matter and have called for a meeting to know why there is delay in collection,” said Nar.

Mersal controversy: I-T raids actor Vishal’s office day after he criticised BJP leader H Raja

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The controversy over Tamil movie Mersal refuses to die down with a raid conducted allegedly by an Income Tax official at the office of Tamil actor Vishal’s film Production Company – Vishal Film Factory in Chennai on Monday a day after actor criticised BJP’s national secretary H Raja for watching the controversial movie online. Meanwhile, a police complaint has been filed against Tamil actor Vijay in Madurai for allegedly hurting Hindu sentiments in his latest movie Mersal.The raid at Vishal’s office took a curious turn after the Directorate General of Goods and Service Tax Intelligence, Chennai Zonal unit denied initial media reports of its official conducting the raid. However, Vishal, who also heads Tamil Film Producers Council (TFPC) and is general secretary of South Indian Artistes’ Association (SIAA), put to rest speculations by clarifying that the raid was conducted by the income tax department.”Neither I nor my managers were present when the IT officials raided my office. I was informed of the I-T raid while I was shooting for my upcoming movie,” he told reporters at his residence here.When asked whether he was being targeted for taking on BJP leaders, he said that he did not oppose the BJP leaders but registered his disappointment over Raja’s statement that he watched Vijay starring Mersal movie online. “Everyone knows very well that watching a movie online is wrong. Raja sir himself said in an interview that he watched the movie online. I registered my disappointment,” he said, requested media to focus its attention on the issue of a family committing self-immolation following harassment by the moneylender. “I am a genuine taxpayer. I am not afraid of anyone,” he asserted. He noted that even if it “is a vindictive action, I am ready to face it.”BJP leader Raja told a television channel that he watched the movie Mersal online while explaining his opposition to the scenes criticising GST and digital India. “Dear Mr HRaja, as a leader and prominent personality, you are advocating piracy and blatantly agreeing to it,” Vishal said in a statement.However, Raja clarified that he had only watched clips of the movie on his mobile phone and said he did not have the patience to sit through a two-and-a-half hour film.Meanwhile, a police complaint has been filed against actor Vijay in Madurai for allegedly hurting Hindu sentiments in his latest movie Mersal. An advocate in Madurai has objected to a particular dialogue in Mersal, where Vijay says: “We don’t need to build temples. We want hospitals.” Police have not filed an FIR, but have issued an acknowledgement of receipt of the complaint.”Mersal” is in the midst of a controversy after BJP’s Tamil Nadu unit demanded removal of certain dialogues which take a dig at GST and digital India. Directed by Atlee, “Mersal” stars Vijay in the roles of a village head, a doctor and a magician. It is doing brisk business at the box office.

Speeding truck hits duo, kills one

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 35-year-old man was killed while his friend was injured when the duo were hit by a speeding truck on the Noida-Greater Noida Expressway at Knowledge Park, in the early hours of Monday morning. The two had just got out of their car to change a tyre, the police said.According to the cops, the incident took place near Jhatta Badauli. Deceased Vikram Singh, a resident of Etah, was on his way to meet a relative in Delhi, along with his friend Pankaj.“Pankaj said that the tyre of their car burst, after which the two stepped out of the vehicle to change it. Suddenly, a truck hit them and fled from the spot,” said Hansraj Bhadauriya, Station Officer, Knowledge Park police station.According to the police, Pankaj made the PCR call and the two were rushed to a nearby hospital, where Singh was declared dead on arrival and Pankaj was discharged after beign administered the first aid.No one has lodged a complaint but police are trying to trace the truck driver.Accident sceneThe incident took place near Jhatta Badauli. Deceased Vikram Singh, a resident of Etah, was on his way to meet a relative in Delhi, along with his friend Pankaj.Pankaj said that the tyre of their car burst, after which the two stepped out of the vehicle to change it. Suddenly, a truck hit them and fled from the spot

Ola, Uber users may soon be able to choose co-riders

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Delhi Transport Department is mulling a new set of rules for shared cab services, which will enable passengers to choose their co-travellers. In the existing practice, commuters sharing a cab are shortlisted by the service providers through a specially designed algorithm.The move, which is still in the discussion phase, may enable sharing facility to continue. The service has been under the radar for sometime now, for violating the Motor Vehicle Act. The Contract Carriage Permit does not allow multiple bookings of a cab by different passengers, which is the core of sharing service that is being provided by aggregators such as Ola and Uber.A cab can be booked by as many as four passengers sharing a ride. As per a clause under the permit, a person has to book the entire vehicle. The Stage Carriage Permit, however, allows booking of a seat in commercial vehicles, such as bus.As per the new proposal, the primary passenger or the one who booked the cab first will be able to decide who he or she wants to travel with. Sources in the Transport Department said they will soon discuss the new measure with app-based service providers. They further informed that they would ask the service providers to devise an algorithm and put in a system in place in this regard.The move, if brought into force, will save the sharing service that has become hugely popular among commuters for being economical. A few months ago, there were reports that the Delhi government was thinking of banning the shared service as it was violating the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988. According to reports, instead of banning the facility, the Delhi government is bringing in new clauses that will allow cabs to ply on roads under shared category.One of the salient features of the new policy, which will bring all radio-based cab providers under one umbrella, will be zero surge pricing. The government will fix a maximum fare, charging anything beyond which will invite a heavy fine. The cab operators will also have to get license from the state transport department to run on roads. A fleet of minimum 100 vehicles will be mandatory to get a license.AS PER CLAUSEA cab can be booked by as many as four passengers sharing a ride. As per a clause under the permit, a person has to book the entire vehicle. The Stage Carriage Permit, however, allows booking of a seat in commercial vehicles

Board cancels Dahisar school registration

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Mumbai division of Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher secondary education (MSBSHSE) has cancelled the registration of Dahisar based school Isra Vidyalaya a few months after 516 answer sheets of Class X board exams went missing from the school.The board has recently cancelled the registration of the school after it found several inadequacies during inspection including lack of security, irregular appointments of teachers etc. “We have cancelled the school’s registration after finding several inadequacies.As a team from the board went to visit the school, it was found that several norms with respect to teacher appointments were flouted,” said SY Chandekar, Chairperson of the Mumbai divisional board.A total of 516 answer papers of Hindi medium history, science and Sanskrit examinations were stolen from the principal’s cabin at Dahisar’s Isra Vidyalaya on April 3. While the answer sheets of 330 students were found by the Dahisar police on April 15, remaining students were given ‘average marks’ by the board as the police failed to recover the remaining papers. The police had also arrested two persons and detained two minors for stealing answer sheets from the school after which the accused had confessed that they had done the crime to earn some quick money.

Would love to work for Madhya Pradesh: Jyotiraditya Scindia

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a candid interview with WION-DNA, Former Union Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia says he would love to go back and work with people of Madhya Pradesh. Accepting that Congress could have done more in the state in the last decade, he says this time around the leaders are working together. Scindia also added that Rahul Gandhi will be elevated in a couple of days.What lessons did the Congress learn from its 2014 debacle?I don’t want to look at the past but invest in the future. There are many lessons to be learnt, but the party, people and country have moved on in the last three years. Congress has been raising issues of tolerance and secularism, we are concerned about the economy, foreign policy and these issues are finding resonance in the public domain. It is important for us to continue to raise these issues and become an alternative to the BJP.How has Congress responded to the Secularism vs Nationalism debate?There cannot be secularism vs nationalism. It is nationalism and secularism and Congress stands for both. We want a safe environment for people of all caste and creed. These are the two pillars which Congress has always stood for. The optics have been changed to ‘this vs that’ scenario. It is the divisive agenda of BJP. The schemes once ridiculed by Mr Modi today are being touted as the biggest successes of India.Is Rahul Gandhi’s elevation imminent?Rahul Gandhi will be elevated in the next couple of days.Are you open to the idea of leading the campaign in Madhya Pradesh? Given a chance would you like to go back?I want to clarify that for the last 15 years I have been working in Madhya Pradesh. In any given month, I have spent 15 days in Madhya Pradesh. MP has gone through a backward movement. It pains me. Whatever the party will decide, I will try to do it to the best of my ability. I would love to work for the people of Madhya Pradesh.Why has Congress failed so many times in MP?There have been multiple reasons for it, but today Congress is in a strong position. We need to work together in Madhya Pradesh. We have great talent and leaders. We have strong elected grassroot workers. If we come together then I see no reason why we cannot win in MP.People say that leaders in MP don’t get together and that is probably why Congress has been losing elections. Did you feel it in the last campaign?I think that in last 13 years, much more could have been done by me and others, but now that scenario has changed. All of us have been working together and you will see the results.Do regional alliances work for the Congress?Indian politics has changed so much. In a majority of states we have a direct fight. Some states have triangular fights. But Congress in the state elections must get its act together and throw up new leadership.

Civic body orders removal of hawkers outside rly stations

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>To tighten the ongoing drive to evict hawkers outside railway stations, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has doubled the fine against the illegal hawkers. For the last four days, the roads immediately outside many railway stations in Mumbai have become spacious as BMC has removed all illegal hawkers. However, considering that the hawkers pay fines and put up their stalls the next day, BMC has not only increased their mobile vans but doubled the fines to discourage the hawkers.Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta gave his nod for the proposal a couple days ago but the decision was communicated to railway officials in a joint meeting of BMC and railway officials on Monday on the course of action on removal of all hawkers up to a 150-metre area outside railway stations under BMC jurisdiction.An officer from BMC licence department said, “The fine has been doubled to discourage hawkers to put up their stalls again. For instance, if previously the removal charges was Rs 240, now it’s Rs 480; and if penalty was Rs 1000, it will now be R s2000. The fine increases according to the type of stalls like eatables, garments and others.”In the joint meeting, the BMC chief also announced that all the Assistant Municipal Commissioners (known as ward officers) of all 24 civic wards will be nodal officers in removal of hawkers outside railway stations. The railway stations from Churchgate to Dahisar on Western Railway, CST to Mulund on Central Railway and CST to Mankhurd on Harbour line fall under BMC jurisdiction.Ajoy Mehta confirmed the decisions announced on Monday and said, “It will be applied for roads outside railway stations only in BMC areas.”

Cuffe Parade residents plan green initiatives, embrace solar energy

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Residents of south Mumbai are pushing for increasing the use of non-conventional sources of energy by installing solar panels and other means to produce green energy. The Cuffe Parade Residents Association (CPRA), in a first, have planned for a garden in a two-acre plot which will be operated only using green energy. To achieve this, the CPRA garden will be installed with solar panels and batteries.Apart from producing green energy, the residents are also attending workshops to spread awareness on creating clean sources of energy, and measures on how to reduce the unnecessary wastage of electricity. “The power generated from the solar energy panels will be used to water trees in the garden through sprinklers. This will help us save a lot of energy. Moreover, we will also use solar energy to illuminate street lights in the locality,” said Padmakar Nandekar, secretary general, CPRA. “We will also be promoting and urging residents to reduce the wastage of electricity so that we are able to wipe out our carbon footprints and help in protecting the environment,” added Nandekar.Moreover, the residents have also taken it upon themselves to use LED lights for all electricity purposes in their homes. “We ensure that the electricity consumption of our homes is less. With two to three rooms in a flat, we ensure that the electricity consumption is decreased. We have also asked the society’s committee members to spread awareness on how to use less electricity,” said a committee member of CPRA.The residents have also started adopting greener ways to recycle waste and are also planning to set up bio-gas plants if they get the space to implement it. The residents plan to set up small workshops for children and senior citizens to spread awareness about greener ways to survive and ensure that carbon emissions in to the atmosphere are reduced.“We believe in go green initiatives and we also ensure that we participate with government agencies to promote and execute the initiatives which will help the environment, leading to less pollution on this planet. It is the responsibility of every citizen to initiate greener ways to help keep the environment clean and green.”GREEN PLANSThe CPRA has planned to develop a garden on a two-acre plot which will be powered using green energy from solar panels. The residents are also attending workshops to spread awareness on creating clean sources of energy and measures on reducing electricity use.

Gram Sabha plots may soon become playgrounds

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>With an aim to create playgrounds for children, Delhi Revenue Minister Kailash Gahlot has ordered district magistrates to identify Gram Sabha plots located in rural areas under their jurisdiction.According to the order, the land will be identified in consultation with MLAs, who will also form committees comprising youths of their areas. These committees will be responsible for the maintenance of these playgrounds.”Gram Sabha plots, where village children can play, shall be identified in each village by the DM concerned,” Gahlot stated in his order. Gahlot, who also holds the charge of transport and law, said the area MLA will form a committee of not more than 21 youths, who will be responsible for maintenance of the land.”The land shall not be allotted or transferred in the name of any authority but will continue to be the Gram Sabha land,” he added.Earlier this month, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had said that the AAP government has drafted a policy under which training, travelling, and other expenses of national and international-level sportspersons would be fully borne by the government.Speaking at an event on October 7, Kejriwal had also said that there was no dearth of youths who could earn medals in sports, but their efforts were constrained by facilities and government assistance.In July this year, Kejriwal had written to Lieutenant-Governor Anil Baijal, requesting for ownership rights to those who had been allotted small Gram Sabha plots. This land was awarded under the Centre’s 20-point programme, nearly four decades ago.According to government officials, thousands of families in Mehrauli, Najafgarh, Kanjhawala, Narela, and Alipur villages were allotted small plots of Gram Sabha land in 1970s and early 80s, and were now facing hardship.The Delhi government had already approved the Bhumidhari (ownership) right in 2012, but as the then L-G had a difference of opinion on this issue, he had referred the matter to President Pranab Mukherjee.Kejriwal had also written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, urging him to resume the subsidy on sugar given to poor families. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, under the chairmanship of the PM, had taken the decision to end subsidy on sugar across the country.

Tyre burst shuts IGIA runway for 1hr

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A runway at Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) had to be shut for more than an hour on Monday evening after a tyre of a chartered flight burst during landing and the plane got stuck on the runway. The incident took place in the evening, during the peak rush hours. All six people on board were reported to be safe, senior officials said. The incident came to light at 6.35 pm, when the Airport Operations Control Centre (AOCC) informed the security agencies that at 5.52 pm, a non-scheduled flight with registration number VT YUD, arriving from Bhubaneswar, suffered a tyre burst, a senior CISF officer said.Following this, the aircraft got stuck and the runway had to be shut. It was only after an hour and after a half, at 7.18 pm, that the aircraft was towed away and the runway was cleared, the officer added. The closure led to some congestion, since only two runways remained functional.

BJP launches helpline to aid Chhath committees

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After training its guns on the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) for not making adequate arrangements for the upcoming Chhath Puja, the Delhi wing of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) launched a helpline on Monday, to aid puja committees that have been constituted for smooth organisation of the festival. The party had earlier formed teams of workers and volunteers to perform different activities during the run-up to the four-day festival, such as cleaning ghats, putting up tents, and arranging for offerings during the puja.Last week, the BJP had alleged that Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was “playing” with faith and sentiments of devotees ahead of the Chhath Puja. Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari said the AAP government had not cleaned the ghats and was deliberately creating roadblocks for the Puja committees. The senior BJP leader further accused the AAP of seizing the festival to promote its CM, adding that the committees were being coerced to put up large photographs of Kejriwal on hoardings. Tiwari also said that the team helping with Puja arrangements and other measures will be led by BJP Poorvanchal Morcha president Manish Singh. Meanwhile, BJP workers, assisted by the civic body staffers, offered shramdan (effort donation) on the Chhath ghats for the second day on Monday, by cleaning the banks. Tiwari had launched the campaign at the Sonia Vihar Second Pushta, Yamuna Bank. Besides, BJP mayors took stock of the Puja arrangements in other parts of the Capital. North Delhi Mayor Preety Agarwal visited places such as Rohini, Narela, and Mukherjee Nagar.FOR ACTIVITIES…The party had earlier formed teams of workers and volunteers to perform different activities during the run-up to the four-day festival, such as cleaning ghats, putting up tents, and arranging for offerings during the puja.
Tiwari said the team helping with Puja arrangements and other measures will be led by BJP Poorvanchal Morcha president

MMRDA issues notice to Metro 7 consultant

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) on Monday said that it has issued notice to the general consultant of Dahisar East-Andheri East Metro-7 corridor after a bunch of iron rods tilted towards the ground near Aarey Colony at Western Express Highway (WEH) on Saturday afternoon.A notice issued by MMRDA dated October 23, 2017, to M/s. AICA Consortium, general consultant for Metro-7, reads, “Accident was occurred at Pier no 5 near Aarey station on Saturday. It was found that the pier reinforcement was bent towards the Service road resulting the closing of service road.”The notice further adds, “You are requested to examine the causes of the accident and submit your report and re-commendation to avoid such incidents in future within 7 days from issue of this letter.”Praveen Darade, Additional Metropolitan Commissioner, MMRDA, said, “We will issue show cause notice to contractor J Kumar Infrastructure also by today (Monday).”An email query sent to J Kumar Infrastructure on Monday did not get any response. J Kumar Infrastructure had said on Saturday: “we shall take best possible efforts to avoid such instances in future”.

Stalking case: Vikas Barala third time unlucky, bail plea dismissed

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Vikas Barala, son of Haryana BJP President Subhash Barala is set to remain in jail after his bail application was rejected by a district court in Chandigarh on Monday.This is the third time the court has dismissed the application of the two accused, Vikas Barala and his accomplice, Ashish. The earlier two bail applications were dismissed on August 29 and September 12.Even as the charge sheet has been submitted in the case and charges have been framed, the two accused continue to remain in jail ever since their arrest on August 9.The accused were charged for allegedly stalking and attempting to kidnap 29-year-old DJ, Varika Kundu, who is daughter of IAS officer VS Kundu, late night on August 4, when she was returning home to Panchkula from Chandigarh. The duo were arrested by Chandigarh Police in a drunken state and given bail hours later, till their arrested again on August 9.”We had pointed out the discrepancies in her statements before the Magistrate. There was no mention of any attempt to kidnap her in her statements before. Moreover, the charge sheet has been submitted,” said Barala’s Counsel Ravinder Pandit.With their bail dismissed, the accused are now set to approach Punjab and Haryana High Court.The next hearing in the case is on October 27.

Western Railway audit: Reduce luggage weight of commuters, instal escalators

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The best way to prevent people from standing on stairways of foot over bridges (FOBs) is to replace them with escalators. Not just this, the Western Railway (WR) in its audit report has suggested reducing the weight of bags and luggage carried inside local trains. Both these factors were among the reasons behind the Elphinstone Road stampede, when the smooth movement of people on the staircase of a foot over bridge was hindered by luggage and sacks carried by commuters.The audit report of WR has suggested that the size and weight of bags carried by commuters in local trains should be reduced drastically. Sources said that at present a commuter travelling first-class can carry up to 50 kg and a second-class passenger can carry 35 kg. “We have proposed to bring it down to 15 kg for first-class and 10 kg for second-class,” said a WR official.Just before Diwali, the Central Railway gave a proposal to the Railway Board in Delhi seeking permission to construct 214 escalators in Mumbai. At present, there are 22 escalators on CR and 32 escalators on WR. This is apart from the ongoing work on 52 escalators on CR. “We are also working at erecting these 52 escalators by June 2018,” said SK Jain, Divisional Railway Manager (Mumbai), Central Railway.The recent audit of stations done by the different teams had also asked the CR authorities to build 67 new escalators. These too have been included in the 214 escalators that have been sent to Delhi. The cost of each escalator is Rs 60 lakh that has annual maintenance contract of 3 years.The WR on the other hand is constructing 18 escalators and has asked for 80 more escalators across all the stations. Apart from this the CR will also construct 12 new FOBs.NEW MEASURESCCTVs planned to cover escalators. 12 new FOBs are being built at a cost of Rs 180 crore.
Special CCTVs will be placed that will capture the crowded locations and send a beeper to the RPF control room

BMC initiates survey of SoBo cemeteries

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has initiated a table survey of the two biggest cemeteries in south Mumbai along with other small ones. It will include boundary wall, total area measurement of the cemetery, number of people buried, safety of walls, washrooms and other aspects.Samajwadi Party corporator from south Mumbai, Rais Shaikh, and leader of the house in BMC, Yashwant Jadhav, along with BMC officials recently had a meeting about the survey.According to Shaikh, the BMC didn’t have details on the cemeteries in Mumbai until two years ago, hence work on preparing a list with all the details was initiated. “Barring one or two cemeteries, the remaining are with private parties. After this table survey, providing required facilities to the cemeteries will be smoother.” “We have two big cemeteries — bada kabrastan and nariyalwadi kabrastan — in south Mumbai. There are small cemeteries too and many of them are illegally encroached. Other issues such as light and water supply, boundary walls will also be understood once the table survey is done. The process has begun in Nariyalwadi kabrastan,” added Shaikh.It is not known how long the process will take.

100 Women: It’s not a sin for women to play cricket

Women’s cricket is frowned on in some sections of Indian society – but these players are taking to the pitch regardless.

Goa: Ally MGP unhappy with Parrikar govt, to remain in ‘wait and watch’ mode

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> The Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, which is a part of the BJP-led dispensation in Goa, today said some of its members are unhappy with the functioning of the government as they feel the administration has “collapsed”.The party with three members in the state assembly, two of whom are in the Manohar Parrikar Cabinet, also said it would adopt a wait-and-watch policy before deciding on the future course of action in the next six to eight months.Talking to reporters after chairing the party’s central committee meeting, MGP chief Dipak Dhavalikar said the party is mulling to contest the next Lok Sabha poll on its own. “Few of our members were unhappy with the functioning of state government. They feel the administration has collapsed. The party has decided that it will wait and watch for six to eight months and…then further action would be taken,” he said.He said his party has been keeping a close eye on the performance of the state government, which he alleged has “failed” in resolving the vexed issues of offshore casinos, drugs, unemployment and others. He, however, refused to say if the party will withdraw its support to the BJP-led government. The party’s central committee also decided to prepare for contesting the upcoming Lok Sabha polls on its own.”But the final call would be taken at a later stage… maybe six months prior to the polls,” Dhavalikar said, adding the party will restart the work in all constituencies it had contested during the last assembly election.He said the MGP polled 13 per cent votes in the state assembly election held in February this year. Dhavalikar said his party is not a part of the NDA, but the current support to the BJP-led government was only because none of the parties got majority in the assembly election. The MGP is yet to receive any proposal from the BJP to join the National Democratic Alliance, he said.”We are yet to receive any such proposal. Once we get it, we will decide,” he said, adding his party had discontinued the coalition with the BJP before the elections this year.We don’t have coalition with the BJP. The BJP sent us a proposal to support them to form the government which was accepted with the condition that Manohar Parrikar (who was the defence minister before the state polls) return to the state,” he added.

No special treatment given to HRD minister’s PS: Railways

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> The railways on Monday downplayed reports which claimed that an extra coach was attached to a train for Union Minister Prakash Javadekar’s private secretary on October 21, saying he was one of the many passengers accommodated in the additional coach due to the huge rush.Officials said Vinay Srivastava, the Human Resource Development Minister’s private secretary who was travelling with his wife and two children, had requested for seats on Padmavati Express between Lucknow and Delhi railway station, but denied that the extra coach was attached to accommodate his request. Srivastava is a 1992-batch Indian Railway Service of Mechanical Engineers official. “During this holiday season as many as 68 extra coaches have been attached to different trains. In fact nine extra coaches have been attached from Lucknow on October 21 and October 22 alone.”This is a routine exercise to accommodate the additional rush. This time it just so happened that one of the passengers was a PS to a Union minister,” said Northern Railway spokesperson Neeraj Sharma. Sharma also said that even a public announcement for the coach was done and it was almost full by the time it reached Delhi. Many passengers were able to travel that day because of the additional coach, he said. However, the official said the matter will be probed in light of media reports which claimed that the move had inconvenienced some passengers.

One year of demonetization: Opposition plans joint protest

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> A united opposition plans to hold a joint protest on November 8, the first anniversary of note-ban which it alleged has “caused harm” to the economy and jobs in the country.Some opposition parties led by the Congress today met in Parliament to chalk out modalities for the proposed joint agitation. Leaders of six opposition parties – the Congress, the Left, the BSP, TMC, DMK and JD(U)’s Sharad Tadav faction – who are part of an opposition coordination committee, today met in the chamber of Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad over the issue. After the hour-long discussions, Azad told reporters that it was an initial meeting and he was asked to consult all 18 opposition parties before finalising anything further.”We will discuss with the other opposition parties and come with our plan soon,” he told reporters. Sources said the opposition is planning a nation-wide protest on note ban anniversary to highlight the “ill- effects” on the economy hard and the job market. “Today the opposition coordination committee met. Representatives of six parties were present. We decided to meet again before parliament session. We will announce our plan tomorrow,” TMC leader Derek O’Brien said after the meeting.O’Brien said the opposition parties discussed the economic situation in the country, including demonetization, GST and other issues. “Today we met to discuss the economic fallout in the country and discuss various aspects of it. Ghulam Nabi has been given the responsibility to discuss the issue with other opposition parties. We will meet again to chalk out our plans,” said CPI leader D Raja after the meeting. The opposition parties today also discussed the case of Sharad Yadav’s disqualification from the Upper House, which is pending before Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu.The Nitish Kumar-led JD(U) had sought Yadav’s disqualification from Rajya Sabha after he revolted against the party’s decision to ally with the BJP. The sources said the opposition leaders have decided to speak to the Vice President tomorrow at a luncheon, where he has invited all leaders of opposition parties. TMC leader O’Brien said his party feels Yadav is been targeted by his party JD(U). “This MP was elected by people on ‘mahagathbandhan’ ideology. He didn’t break the ideology, others broke it. Why should Yadav be penalised ?” he said.Sharad Yadav, Satish Chandra Misra, Derek O’Brien, Kanimozhi and D Raja were among those present at today’s meeting. Another member of the coordination committee Ram Gopal Yadav of Samajwadi Party could not attend.

Amul makes a business proposition to Indian Railways on Twitter. Railways reply is epic

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Dairy giant Amul today reached out to the Indian Railways on its official Twitter handle with a business proposition to use its refrigerated parcel vans to transport Amul Butter across India. And the railway Twitter handle responded in the most epic way possibleThe Railways promptly responded on the micro-blogging site, using a popular tag line of the company for the brand.The Indian Railways extensively uses Twitter to address passenger woes. But this could perhaps be the first time the national transporter has received a business proposition on the micro-blogging site.The Indian Railways had introduced the refrigerated van service a few years ago with an aim to facilitate the transportation of perishable commodities such as fruits, vegetables, frozen meats/poultry and chocolates, but most of the vans were lying defunct, according to a ministry official.However, this service exists only on specific routes.”We would certainly like to capture this traffic. Let us see what can be done,” the official added.The senior divisional manager of the Ahmedabad Division will meet officials from Amul tomorrow to discuss this, said the official.He said that the South Western Railway has some refrigerated vans, they can be repaired and used by the Railways to assist Amul.

Taj Mahal controversy a ploy by BJP to divert away from key issues: Kanhaiya Kumar

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The controversy around the origin of Taj Mahal was created by the BJP to divert attention from key issues, including the alleged increase in the wealth of its chief Amit Shah’s son, former JNU students’ union president Kanhaiya Kumar alleged here on Monday.”The controversy over Taj Mahal was created by the BJP leadership to divert attention of the people from Shah’s son Jay Shah’s manifold increase in wealth,” he told reporters here.A news website had made claims about a sharp increase in the wealth of a company linked with Jay Shah. Jay Shah as well as the BJP have outrightly rubbished the allegations.On upcoming Gujarat polls, Kumar said the graph of BJP had dipped. The student leader, however, said that he would not join any party to campaign in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh Assembly polls.”I will join active politics in near future. But I am not the agent of any political party,” he said.He stressed upon the need for a collective movement to bring change in the society.”Nothing can be done till we achieve equality for all.Politicians are using people for their benefits,” he said.He claimed the situation in the country was such that when a media house or a journalist tries to raise the real issues they are intimidated with Rs 100 crore defamation cases.Those who don t get intimidated with cases, they are being killed, he alleged and referred the killing of Bangalore-based journalist Gauri Lankesh in this context.”When you can t express your views freely, it indicates that the very Constitution of India is in danger,” he said.He raised questions about the Election Commission’s decision regarding the scheduling of the Gujarat polls.He also criticised the Rajasthan government’s “draconian law” which bars the media from publishing any particulars against public servant till the government approves their prosecution.This move of the Rajasthan government is aimed to protect the corrupt, he said.He said that those raising their voice against the wrong doings in the system or in the government were being branded as anti-nationals while those praising the government were declared nationalists.”There can not be two different standards. Healthy criticism has to be accepted in a positive way,” he said.Talking about demonetisation and GST, Kumar said it was a known fact that big fish eat small fish. “With both the decisions the government has facilitated the big fish to eat the small fish,” he said.The GST is deadly against the small businessman and causing much loss to them, he said.He said the government was dancing to the tunes of corporate houses while unemployment was a serious problem and corruption rampant.”Nothing much had happened in connection with the black money and only few industrialists are getting benefits in the present NDA regime,” he said.On suicides by farmers, he said there was a need for economic and political empowerment of peasants.Justifying reservation, he said there is nothing unconstitutional about it. “In private sector there is no reservation and most of the people are working in this sector,” he said.

Fake stamp paper racket kingpin Abdul Karim Telgi in critical condition

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Abdul Karim Telgi, who had shot to fame after his name had surfaced in the multi-crore fake stamp paper racket is currently in a critical condition. He has been admitted to a hospital in Bengaluru. According to the officials, Telgi is currently fighting for his life at Victoria hospital in Bengaluru. Telgi had shot to fame when in 2002 he had showered as much as the Rs 93 lakh in one night on one bar girl in a dance bar in Mumbai.In July this year, it had come to light that Telgi, who was convicted in the counterfeit stamp paper scam, used to get special treatment in the Parappana Agrahara Central Jail in Bengaluru, Karnataka. He was arrested in Ajmer in November 2001. Telgi has been suffering from diabetes and hypertension for over 20 years, besides other ailments.

Why aren’t children with special needs sent to appropriate schools, SC asks UP government

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Uttar Pradesh government why separate schools cannot be set up to impart education to children with special needs, instead of teaching them along with other students.A bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra also asked the state government how children with special needs (CWSN) can be taught with kids who are not disabled.The bench, also comprising of Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud, raised the query after the Centre and the state government said that under the new integrated education scheme, CWSN were being taught along with kids who do not suffer from any disability.The top court asked Centre why some guidelines cannot be framed for the education of such children across the country.The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) and the UP government said that CWSN were being taught under the integrated scheme to ensure they are not demoralised or feel isolated.They told the apex court that teaching CWSN along with children without disability would boost the confidence of those disabled and stop their alienation from the normal environment in schools.The submissions came during hearing of a PIL, filed through advocate Prashant Shukla, claiming lack of sufficient number of special educators in the state of UP as well as across India to teach CWSN.The petition, by 17 teachers who claim to have undertaken the training required to teach CWSN, has contended that to make Right to Education a success, it is necessary that qualified special educators are there in each school so that disabled kids can be prepared to face the challenges of life.The Punjab government was also faced with the same query from the bench in another similar matter in the apex court.

Rex Tillerson in India: US Secretary of State to meet PM Modi, EAM Swaraj

Excerpt from: Rex Tillerson in India: US Secretary of State to meet PM Modi, EAM Swaraj

Mersal row: South Indian Film Chamber of Commerce seeks action against BJP’s H Raja for watching film online

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The South Indian Film Chamber of Commerce (SIFCC) today said it has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Smriti Irani, seeking action against BJP leader H Raja for reportedly watching Tamil film ‘Mersal’ online.Referring to Raja’s remarks reported in a section of media in this regard, SIFCI President L Suresh said that the BJP National Secretary had “confessed” this in a section of the media.SIFCI is the apex body of studio owners, producers, distributors and exhibitors from all the southern states.Raja “confessed before a press reporter that he saw the aforesaid Tamil film on the internet, which is obviously a pirated version,” Suresh said in a statement.The BJP leader was “liable to be prosecuted” for this under the Tamil Nadu Video Piracy Act, he said, adding SIFCI had already made a complaint to the grievances cell of the PMO.”We have also written an official letter addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Smriti Irani, requesting them to take suitable action against Mr H Raja for seriously violating the Piracy Act,” he said.The complaint against Raja “may be treated in a steadfast manner” by the PMO, he added.He wondered what would happen to the cinema industry if leaders watched pirated versions of films.On BJP’s demand for deletion of mocking references to Goods and Services Tax (GST) in ‘Mersal,’ starring Vijay, he said as per “several” court decisions, once a movie had been certified by the Censor board, a producer need not make any changes thereafter “at the whims and fancies of any political party or community leaders.”Raja had courted controversy yesterday when he reportedly said he had watched ‘Mersal,’ online, drawing rebuke from actor Vishal, who heads the Tamil Film Producers Council.Vishal, also general secretary of South Indian Artistes’ Association (SIAA), had demanded an apology from Raja.However, Raja had clarified that he had only watched clips of the movie on his mobile phone.Piracy is one of the major issues being faced by the multi-crore Tamil cinema industry, with films being uploaded on certain websites soon after their release.The availability of pirated CDs and DVDs of new films is also an issue.Actor Vijay’s fans have been reportedly circulating the contentious scenes, allegedly mocking the central government’s Goods and Services Tax (GST), through mobile phones.Diwali release “Mersal” has kicked up a row with the BJP taking exception to references on GST in the movie.BJP leaders, including Raja, a national secretary in the party,state president Tamilisai Soundarajan and Union minister Pon Radhakrishnan, have been demanding that the “incorrect” references be deleted from the big-budget flick.However, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, his senior colleague P Chidambaram, DMK working president M K Stalin, veteran star Kamal Haasan and a host of Tamil cinema industry representatives had supported the film crew on the issue.

J&K peace talks: How the past interlocutors and groups failed to break any deadlock

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Centre on Monday, in a surprise move, appointed an interlocutor for talks in Jammu and Kashmir. Ex- IB Chief Dineshwar Sharma who has experience of working in the Valley has been roped in as the special representative with Cabinet rank with an agenda of ‘sustained dialogue’ with all stakeholders with ‘legitimate aspirations’. Rajnath Singh while announcing mentioned PM’s Independence Day statement which said problems in the state could be solved “neither by bullet, nor by abuses but by embracing the people”. He said this showed government’s intention towards solving the Kashmir problem. Union Home Minister expressed hope that Dineshwar Sharma can make a way forward to solve the Kashmir puzzle and said that failures of the past shouldn’t affect the present. Rajnath Singh also said that being apolitical is the greatest strength of Sharma, and he can assess the ground situation properly.
ALSO READ Peace is top priority: Dineshwar Sharma on being appointed govt’s special representative on KashmirDineshwar Sharma has worked as assistant director of IB in Kashmir from 1992-94 and was later head of the Kashmir desk in the capital. It remains to be seen the contours of talks Sharma undertakes. But here is a look at what has happened in similar such efforts in the past. From 2000, this is the fourth interlocutor appointed by Centre. The first one was done by Vajpayee government when former Union Minister KC Pant was appointed. The second effort was when NN Vohra was entrusted with the job (who is incidentally the Governor of the state currently) and the third one was done in 2010 by UPA government when a three-member committee of Dileep Padgaonkar, Radha Kumar, and MM Ansari went to Kashmir as interlocutor.
ALSO READ Sustained dialogue on Kashmir: All you need to know about Former IB Director Dineshwar SharmaIn the case of KC Pant, he failed to achieve much as none of the separatists except Shabir Shah talked to him. The Hurriyat Conference played spoilsport with its demand for getting Pakistan also part of the talks. A united Hurriyat at that time was steadfast even before the start of talks that Pant had no real agenda. Pant on his part decided to snub APHC saying it is not a major player in the Valley.However, the fact remained that Vajpayee government did believe Hurriyat was a significant stakeholder in Kashmir. In 2002, the Kashmir committee was formed to reach out to all stakeholders in the Valley. Led by Ram Jethmalani, it comprised of the likes of Ashok Bhan, Shanti Bhushan, Dileep Padgaonkar, VK Grover, MJ Akbar. As an informal committee, it managed to meet the separatists but didn’t result in any tangible results. Some reports suggest, Jethmalani claimed that he managed a deal with Hurriyat, but it was scuttled by Mirwaiz Umar Farooq.
ALSO READ J&K peace talks: Interlocutor appointed as Centre’s policy failed, says Cong; Don’t politicise issue, says BJPIn 2003, the Indian government appointed NN Vohra as their new point person in the valley. It was pretty much the repetition of the old story. However, Vohra managed to get the moderates of the Hurriyat for talks with LK Advani which weren’t really fruitful. The UPA1 started with an earnest effort to break the imbroglio. Manmohan Singh in 2006 set up five working groups on Kashmir after a couple of roundtable meets in 2005. Interestingly Hurriyat stayed off the meetings, even though it initially decided to attend. The five working groups on strengthening relations across the Line of Control, confidence-building measures across segments of society in the state including detainees, economic development, ensuring good governance and centre-state relations submitted their report but their recommendations were not acted upon. Incidentally, Mehbooba Mufti in July 2016 in an all-party meeting at the height of unrest in Kashmir referred to the five committees and backed the Manmohan formula saying, “A beginning can be made by implementing the recommendations of the five working groups constituted by the then prime minister”. UPA government’s next step of very public outreach in Jammu and Kashmir was the interlocutor committee formed in October 2010. It was formed in October 2010, post massive violence in the valley. The committee headed by Padgaonkar suggested in their final report in 2012 among other steps review of AFSPA, talks with Hurriyat and setting up of the constitutional committee. Neither the UPA or the NDA government bothered to discuss the report on the floor of the house and the recommendations, as usual, got a cold shoulder. At that time, the Union government said, ” .“The government has not yet taken any decisions on the report. The government will welcome an informed debate on the contents of the report”. It also advocated for permanent status to controversial Article 370, which guarantees special status to Jammu and Kashmir. In 2016, when Kashmir again witnessed a cesspool of violence, Dileep Padgaonkar was quoted saying violence could have been prevented if their recommendations were accepted. Incidentally, the separatists stayed away from talks with the panel also. Analysing the reason behind it, Radha Kumar said that they wanted to talk with political authorities and hence gave them the cold shoulder. So a brief history of the talks in the past shows either they were marred with non-inclusion of all major stakeholders or in some cases like the working groups, lack of follow-up of a good initiative. The recommendations at the time were not politically suitable for the government of the day to ensure a proper follow-up. Between an ideal solution and realpolitik, somehow solution eluded Kashmir. The Centre has turned a new chapter in the Kashmir talks by appointing a new interlocutor. This comes after a hard stance cracking down on armed militants post the unrest which started after Burhan Wani’s death. The centre also repeatedly said that no talks will be held with separatists. Now with Dineshwar Sharma in the mix, that equation is likely to change.Will the carrot work now, that the stick has done its part? Will the Hurriyat and other stakeholders come to the table? The questions are many, with no proper answer at this point in time. But Dineshwar Sharma will do well to look back at the past failures to get a recipe to save Kashmir’s future. With PTI inputs

Gujarat Elections 2017: GST is ‘Gabbar Singh Tax’, harming businesses, says Rahul Gandhi

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi today dubbed the Goods and Services Tax as ‘Gabbar Singh Tax’, naming it after Bollywood’s iconic villain as he fired a fresh salvo at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the sweeping tax reform and demonetization. As Gujarat headed for Assembly polls, Gandhi also said that the state is “priceless and can never be bought”, a day after Patidar leader Narendra Patel claimed in Ahmedabad that he was offered Rs 1 crore to join the BJP, a charge rubbished by the saffron party. Gandhi brought up the issue of GST while highlighting the hardships it caused to people during a rally that marked the formal joining of OBC leader Alpesh Thakor into the Congress as part of the opposition party’s strategy of broadening its political and social base to take on the BJP which has been in power in Gujarat for nearly two decades.”Their (Centre’s) GST is not GST. GST means Gabbar Singh Tax. This is causing a loss to the country. Small shopkeepers are finished. Lakhs of youths have gone unemployed. But they are still not ready to listen,” Gandhi told the rally of Thakor community in Gandhinagar. Late Amjad Khan portrayed the character of dacoit Gabbar Singh in the Bollywood blockbuster ‘Sholay’ and immortalised him as the scariest villain in the Indian cinema.Stating that the GST, in its present form, is not what the Congress had conceived, Gandhi said that although his party had warned the government about the adverse impact of the new tax regime (in the present form), the Modi government acted against its suggestions. Gandhi also asked the government to change the new tax system by making it simpler. Gandhi also mocked Modi over demonetisation announced by him on November 8 last year. “Don’t know what happened, on November 8, Modiji says that this Rs 500, Rs 1000 notes, I do not like them, so from 12 at night, I am going to scrap it. Ha Ha Ha,” he said. “He hit the axe, and for the first 2-3 days he could not understand what happened,” he said, adding that “the prime minister only realised his mistake after 5-6 days”. “Narendra Modi ji ruined the economy of the entire country,” he alleged.Gandhi attacked Modi and the BJP while latching on to the bribery allegation made by Narendra Patel, an activist of the Hardik Patel-led Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS). Gandhi said thousands of youths in Gujarat, belonging to all castes, will not remain silent now and their voices cannot be “suppressed” or “purchased”. Narendra Patel, within hours of joining the BJP, alleged last night at a press conference that he was offered Rs 1 crore by the BJP and was given a token amount of Rs 10 lakh.”This Gujarati voice is not an ordinary voice. This voice of Gujarat cannot be silenced or suppressed. You can offer any thing, (Rs) one crore, (Rs) 10 crore, (Rs) 50 crore, (Rs) 1000 crore, entire budget of India, entire money of the world, (but) this Gujarati voice cannot be purchased,” Gandhi said. “In the past also, there were attempts to suppress this voice. British tried to suppress Gandhiji, first in South Africa, then in Gujarat and India. But the voice of Gujarat drove out that superpower from the country,” he said.Earlier in the day, Gandhi tweeted to say that Gujarat is priceless and can never be bought. “Gujarat is priceless. It has never been been bought. It can never be bought. It will never be bought,” Gandhi said on Twitter. The BJP has rubbished Narendra Patel’s charges and said it was a “drama” staged at the behest of the Congress. “All these allegations are false. It was a drama (enacted) by Narendra Patel at the behest of Congress,” Gujarat BJP spokesperson Bharat Pandya said.

US firms to invest in Uttar Pradesh to bolster Indo-US relations: Yogi Adityanath

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Monday rolled out a red carpet welcome to a US business delegation comprising senior representatives of 26 major American firms and assured to offer them the best investment opportunities in the state.Under the ‘US in UP’ programme, the delegation called on the Chief Minister late Monday evening. “Under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s leadership, a new chapter has been added into the Indo-US relations. Uttar Pradesh will act as catalyst and provide a backbone to further strengthen business ties with the US,” said Adityanath.The US delegation was led by Boeing India President Pratyush Kumar. It comprises representatives from top US companies including Facebook, Adobe, Coca Cola, Mosangto, Mastercard, Proctor & Gamble, Uber, Honeywell, GE Health, Pratts & Whitney, Merck, Azure Power, Cargill, Medtronic etc.The meeting was organised under the aegis of the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF). Officials from the US Embassy and US Trade and Development Agency were also part of the delegation.The Chief Minister claimed that his government has already announced its investor-friendly new industrial policy under which a single-window system has been opened to ensure investors face no problem in seeking licenses and clearances for setting up their industries in the state. “The new GST regime proved to be a game-changer. Uttar Pradesh is the biggest market in the country. Anyone making investment in the state would get all support from my government,” he assured.A US delegation had visited the state earlier in June to explore possibilities of bilateral trade. “Uttar Pradesh provides tremendous business opportunities in chemical, petro-chemical, pharmaceuticals, cement, power, gems, textiles and engineering sectors,” said Dr Siddharth Nath Singh, BJP Spokesperson and State Health minister.“The US delegation showed keen interest to invest in Uttar Pradesh,” the minister told mediapersons after the meeting.

Kashmir: 72 assaulted in braid-chopping incidents in Valley

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In Kashmir, there were 72 cases of people beating up innocents on the suspicion of them being braid-choppers and cases would be registered against all those who took law into their own hands, Director General of Police (DGP) Dr S P Vaid said on Monday.He also said if needed, those accused of beating up the innocent would be slapped with Public Safety Act (PSA), but no innocent person being branded as braid-chopper by the public on suspicion would be booked.”In 72 cases (of braid chopping), people took law into their own hands and beat up the innocent (in Kashmir Valley)”, Vaid told PTI on Monday.Asserting that FIRs would be lodged in all the 72 cases, he said, “The police will deal with miscreants sternly.” The DGP said police would not book any innocent person and in cases where an innocent person have been handed over to the police by the public on the suspicion of being a braid- chopper, police authorities should tell the facts to the media clearly.Vaid said all districts now have Special Investigation Teams (SITs) and officials from Social Welfare and Health department have be involved in it.The health department should depute teams to meet braid- chopping victims and probe the matter, he said.The DGP said, “It (braid-chopping incidents) took place in many parts of northern India and then it was reported in Jammu. Such cases were also reported in south, central and north Kashmir”.”But the difference is that, in Kashmir, there are elements who do not want peace and normalcy,” Vaid said, adding such elements were trying to exploit people’s sentiments to trigger unrest.

J&K peace talks: Interlocutor appointed as Centre’s policy failed, says Cong; Don’t politicise issue, says BJP

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Congress on Monday claimed the Centre had “miserably failed” in Kashmir and said the government had lost precious time and life before admitting that a “muscular approach” would not work in the Valley.The party said by appointing an interlocutor for Kashmir, the government had agreed to the Opposition’s demand for talks with all stakeholders to bring peace to the Valley.While former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said the government had realised the Opposition was right in calling for talks in Kashmir, former Union Home Minister P Chidambaram said the appointment of the interlocutor — announced by the government today — was a major victory for those who strongly argued for a political solution.”From ‘No talks’ to ‘Talks with all stakeholders’ is a major victory for those who had strongly argued for a political solution in J&K,” Chidambaram tweeted.In another Tweet, he said, “With appointment of interlocutor, I hope government has finally admitted ‘muscular approach’ has failed in J&K”.Azad asked why the government had wasted three-and-a- half-years and lost many precious lives before doing something that the Opposition had been demanding all along.”After having failed miserably” in Kashmir, the government had finally admitted its “blunder”, he said.”We had been demanding from day one that they should talk to all stakeholders and they opposed this demand. After having wasted full three-and-a-half-years and so much loss of life on both sides, they have come to this conclusion,” he said, describing the government’s think tank as “zero”.The Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha told reporters the Congress and the Opposition had been saying that demonetisation and GST were “wrong” decisions and now the government was making changes.”Whatever the Opposition has been saying on Kashmir, GST and on demonetisation is being proved 100 per cent true and this shows the total failure of the Union government and the total non-application of its mind on various national and international issues,” Azad said.Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari said the appointment of a representative to initiate a dialogue with all stakeholders in Jammu and Kashmir indicated that “realists” in the government had prevailed over the “hawks”.”Appointment of an interlocutor in J&K is indicative that realists in government have prevailed over the hawks. Hard Power is not an end but means towards an end,” Tewari said on Twitter.The Centre announced sustained dialogues with all stakeholders in the Valley and appointed former Intelligence Bureau director Dineshwar Sharma as its special representative for the talks.The CPI said it had to be seen how the government’s new move would work.”The government has taken a U-turn. The Centre’s Kashmir policy has been unsuccessful till now,” party leader D Raja said.He added an all-party delegation had suggested that the dialogue process start with all sections.”The government did not do it then. Good sense has prevailed. We have to see how it will work now,” he said.Meanwhile, Union minister Jitendra Singh said that opposition parties should not politicise the Kashmir issue and extend cooperation instead.”The dialogue process was always continuing (in J&K). But now attempts have been made to institutionalise the process by appointing a senior officer for a sustained dialogue with all stakeholders in all three regions — Jammu, Ladakh and Kashmir — and the rest of India,” the minister of state in the Prime Minister’s Office.Earlier in the day, Home Minister Rajanath Singh had said former director of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) Dineshwar Sharma would be the central government’s representative to initiate dialogue with all stakeholders in the state.”It is a welcome step forward in the process which is already going on under the Modi government,” said Jitendra Singh, who represents Udhampur constituency of the state in the Lok Sabha.Referring to certain concerns and objections raised by opposition parties to the Centre’s efforts to stabilise Jammu and Kashmir, he said some disgruntled politicians who are down and out are maybe trying to get their pound of flesh but the people of Kashmir, particularly youths are now keen to move ahead as part of the development journey of India led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.Jitendra Singh hoped that opposition parties and their leaders will also come forward to cooperate and not politicise the issue, which could harm Kashmir.To that extent, the announcement is also meant to provide adequate opportunity to the youth of Kashmir to reap the benefits of enormous avenues made available to the rest of country by the Modi government, he said.”Those who are trying to misguide the youth would try to recall that even this year over 30 boys and girls form militancy-ridden districts of Kashmir paved their way to Indian Institutes of Technology and National Institutes of Technology which is reflective of the Kahsmiri youths’ aspiration of being part of growth of new India,” the minister said.

Himachal Pradesh: Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, Manmohan Singh to be star campaigners for Congress

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Congress on Monday released the list of star campaigners for the upcoming Himachal Pradesh Assembly polls.The list includes names of 40 prominent leaders, including Congress president Sonia Gandhi, party vice-president Rahul Gandhi, and former prime minister Manmohan Singh.Besides this, the list also includes the names of senior Congress leaders like Ambika Soni, Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, Punjab Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh, former Uttarakhand chief minister Harish Rawat, former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Anand Sharma, Ghulam Nabi Azad, and Sheila Dikshit.Other star campaigners are: Sushil Kumar Shinde, Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu, Selja, Bhanwaditender Singh, Jyotiraditya Scindia, Sachin Pilot, Randeep S Surjewala, Raj Babbar, Ranjeet Ranjan, Pramod Tiwari, Pratap Singh Bajwa, Sunil Jakhar, Manish Tiwari, Navjot Singh Sidhu, Amrinder Singh Raja Brar, Vijay lnder Singla, Gaurav Gogo, Sushmita Dev, Ghulam Ahmed Mir, Ashok Tanwar, G.S. Bali, Kaul Singh Thakur, Kuldeep Sharma, Pritam Singh, Charanjit Singh Channi, Manpreet Singh Badal, Madan Lal Sharma, Akbar, Jaiveer Shergil Road, and Kailasho Saini.The Congress had earlier released a list of 59 candidates for the polls which will be held in a single phase on November 9.The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has also released the list of the leaders, who would be campaigning for the upcoming polls in the state.The list includes the names of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party chief Amit Shah.The result of the assembly polls will be declared on December 18.

Mumbai: Teen jumps out of train after man enters ladies compartment, refuses to leave

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 13-year-old girl jumped out of a moving local train near the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus in south Mumbai when a man entered the ladies compartment and refused to leave, railway police said on Monday.The incident took place at 10 am on Sunday.The girl, a class VIII student, was returning home, an official attached to the CSMT railway police station said.It being Sunday, there was nobody else in the ladies compartment where she was sitting. As the train moved out of the CSMT, a man entered the compartment, and didn’t disembark when the girl pointed out that he had got into the wrong compartment.Instead, he asked her to keep quiet and started moving menacingly towards her, the official said, citing her complaint.Scared, the girl jumped out and suffered injuries, he said.Based on her complaint, a case was registered against an unidentified man under IPC sections 354 (molestation), 338 (causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) as well as relevant sections of the Railways Act.Police were examining the CCTV footage to identify the man, the official said

NGT tells Delhi govt and Jal board to explain why they shouldn’t face contempt over Yamuna cleaning project

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Delhi government and the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) on Monday came under fire for delaying compliance of orders on the Yamuna cleaning project of the National Green Tribunal, which asked them to show cause why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against them.In a chamber meeting held at the NGT premises, a bench headed by Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar rapped the authorities saying that except for shifting blame, the stakeholders, including the city government, had no reasons to offer in support of their “inaction and non-cooperation” for completing the project.It also asked them to explain why the amount earmarked by the Delhi government and the DJB for Yamuna rejuvenation should not be attached for violation of the NGT orders.The Phase-I of the clean Yamuna project aims to lower the pollution levels in the Najafgarh and Delhi Gate drains, while Phase-II deals with Shahdara, Barapullah and other drains.The green panel said it was a matter of great regret that the judgement of the tribunal in relation to cleaning and rejuvenation of river Yamuna passed on January 13, 2015 have not been complied with by the various stakeholders till date.During the meeting which went for over an hour, DJB CEO Keshav Chandra told the tribunal that work on Phase-1 of the project was stopped as the AAP government had initiated enquiry against him for alleged financial irregularities over the setting up of sewage treatment plants.The NGT took exception over this submission and asked why the DJB CEO did not approach the NGT, instead of stopping the work.It directed DJB to file a detailed reply in ten days and posted the matter for further hearing on November 6.Advocate Kush Sharma, appearing for Delhi Development Authority (DDA), said they have complied with the NGT orders and were releasing the money as demanded by the DJB.He said even the NGT has appreciated the steps taken by the DDA for Yamuna cleaning.The meeting was attended by the chief secretary of Delhi government, DDA vice chairman Udai Pratap Singh, DJB CEO, representative of the project proponent Larsen & Toubro and officials from National Mission for Clean Ganga.The tribunal had earlier directed the Delhi government and DJB to submit a status report on the progress of the work in the first phase of cleaning the river Yamuna.It had then directed Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh to file a complete report of the stretch of the Yamuna falling beyond the national capital.The green panel had said that pollution in the Yamuna was of serious concern as it was highly contaminated by industrial effluents and sewage.It had also asked Haryana and Himachal Pradesh Pollution Control Board to jointly conduct a study of water quality and the flow of Yamuna at the point it enters Haryana, and submit the list of industries located in the catchment area.The green panel had noted that almost 67% of the pollutants reaching Yamuna would be treated by the two sewage treatment plants at Delhi Gate and Najafgarh under the first phase of the ‘Maili se Nirmal Yamuna Revitalisation Project’.

Peace is top priority: Dineshwar Sharma on being appointed govt’s special representative on Kashmir

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The clock has turned full circle for former IB chief Dineshwar Sharma, who was appointed the Centre’s special representative in Kashmir on Monday, 25 years after his first posting for the bureau in the Valley.It was May 1992. Militancy was at its peak and Sharma, then 36, arrived in Srinagar after completing a year of customary training at the Intelligence Bureau headquarters in New Delhi.The Kerala-cadre officer, who was posted as assistant director between 1992 to 1994, went on to head the IB from 2014 to 2016. Today, he was appointed special representative for the government’s “sustained dialogue” process for peace in the Valley.”It’s like homecoming for me. I am sure that I will be able to fulfil the expectations of the government and people of the country,” Sharma said.The 61-year-old — at present the Centre’s pointperson for dialogue with Assam-based militant groups — said he feels honoured that he has been assigned such a challenging task.Kashmir has been a running thread through his career. After his return from the Valley in 1994, Sharma was again posted at the Kashmir desk in the national capital.”The times were tough and I hope that now we will together bring peace in the Valley,” he said.Asked whether he would talk to separatist groups in the Valley, Sharma said, “The modalities are being worked out but I would like to talk to everyone who is interested in bringing permanent peace in the Valley.””Let me make it clear that peace is the priority and for that my doors will be open to everyone,” he said.Referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Independence Day speech, Sharma said, “… We have to work towards the goal set by the prime minister and embrace Kashmiri’s and ensure that lasting peace is achieved.”Sharma, who has also served in Uttar Pradesh and northeastern states besides holding sensitive posts at the IB headquarters here, called on Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh.Sharma would hold talks with all sections of people and organisations, the minister had said at a hurriedly called press conference here earlier in the day.The home minister made it clear that Sharma, who would hold the rank of a cabinet secretary, would have complete independence in deciding who to hold talks with.”The Centre has shown conviction and consistency on Kashmir issue and carrying forward this policy, we have decided to begin a sustained dialogue policy for Jammu and Kashmir,” the minister said.

Rajath Singh evades query on CBI special director Rakesh Asthana’s involvement in corruption case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday parried questions on IPS officer Rakesh Asthana’s promotion as CBI special director.Asthana’s promotion late last night was clouded by reports that a Central Vigilance Commission panel raised the issue of his alleged involvement in a corruption case.”Please only ask questions related to it (matter on Jammu and Kashmir),” Singh said in response to a journalist’s query on the officer’s promotion.He was addressing a press conference to announce a peace initiative on Kashmir.Asthana, a 1984-batch IPS officer of Gujarat cadre, was working as additional director in the probe agency. He is the head of a Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing high-profile cases such as bank fraud case against Vijay Mallya and AgustaWestland VVIP chopper scam.Raising doubts over his integrity, anti-corruption activist and senior Supreme Court lawyer Prashant Bhushan said in a tweet: “See PM’s desperation to promote this tainted officer who was earlier appt acting Dir CBI. Govt shows meeting of ACC on Sunday when PM in Guj!(sic).” The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC), headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and having Rajnath Singh as its lone member, had approved Asthana’s elevation.In another tweet, Bhushan said, “Brazenness with which Modi govt violates law grows daily. ACC promotes offr as SPL Dir CBI in violation of SC orders (sic).” “Amazing! Govt promotes Asthana as SPL Dir CBI, despite the CVC panel rejecting it because of lack of integrity! (sic),” he said in a separate tweet.A panel headed by Central Vigilance Commissioner K V Chowdary reportedly red-flagged Asthana’s promotion, citing his alleged involvement in a corruption case.According to senior government officials, Asthana is tipped to be the next chief of the CBI.The panel, which decides promotions and transfers of officers of the levels of Superintendent of Police and above in the CBI, has two vigilance commissioners Rajiv and T M Bhasin, home secretary Rajiv Gauba and Secretary of Department of Personnel and Training Ajay Mittal as its members

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