GN Staff | October 28, 2015
Fifty constituencies spread over six districts are voting on Wednesday in the third phase of the assembly elections in Bihar. The polling began at 7 am in 14,170 polling stations spread in six districts of Patna, Vaishali, Saran, Nalanda, Buxar and Bhojpur districts. Polling would end at 4 pm in 10 constituencies due to security reasons and at 5 pm in the rest 40 constituencies. An electorate of 1,45,93,980 voters would exercise their franchise in the third phase, including 78,51,593 male voters and 67,06,687 female voters. A total of 808 candidates are in the fray, out of which 71 are female. The two sons of Lalu Prasad, Tej Pratap Yadav and Tejaswi Yadav, are contesting from Mahua and Raghopur seats respectively. The former chief minister's political turf Saran, which has 10 Assembly seats, and the seven-seat Nalanda, home district of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, will be covered in the third phase.
We trained Mujahideens for militancy in J&K, admits Musharraf
In a startling revelation which exposes Pakistan's double standards over cross border terrorism in India, former military ruler Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf accepted during an interview that his country has trained Mujahideens for spreading terrorism in the Kashmir Valley. In the interview given to a Pakistani news channel Duniya TV, Musharraf said, “Pakistan trained Lashkar for attacks in Kashmir, we trained Taliban, Ayman-al-Zawahri and Jalaluddin Haqqani to counter Soviets in Afghanistan.” “We trained Mujahideens for militancy in J&K. We needed to fight their oppression. Pakistan funded Lashkar. Hafiz Saeed was our hero, as so were the Kashmiris who crossed over to this side of the border to wage Jihad,” he added.
Meeting Rs 69,500-cr disinvestment target will be difficult
The global metal and commodity meltdown is emerging as a major deterrent for the government's disinvestment target, with line ministries reluctant to sell stakes in PSUs like Nalco, Hindustan Copper, NMDC and Coal India.Speaking at separate events, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and his deputy Jayant Sinha admitted that meeting the Rs 69,500 crore disinvestment target for the fiscal year will be difficult, with both putting the blame on low commodity prices. This would, however, not impact the fiscal deficit target as collection of indirect tax revenue has been good.
SC hearing on blanket ban on Diwali crackers today
The supreme court will hear today a PIL seeking a complete ban on crackers on Diwali. The centre, meanwhile, has told the court that it's not in favour of putting a blanket on crackers on Diwali. The centre on Tuesday told the apex court that guidelines on the issue already exist. Citing a judgment by the Supreme Court in 2001, the Centre said that the ruling allows crackers from 6.00 am to 10.00 am. Now, the apex court will hear the matter on Wednesday. Arjun Gopal, Aarav Bhandari and Zoya Rao Bhasin, all aged between 6 and 14 months, had knocked the doors of the Supreme Court seeking immediate steps to curb Delhi's fatal air pollution including ban on fire crackers during Diwali.
India jumps 12 spots in World Bank's Ease of Doing Business list
India has moved 12 places in the Ease of Doing Business list from 142 last year to 130 this year, according to a World Bank report released on Tuesday. "If the changes that we saw thus far can be kept up and strengthened a little, it is not impossible for India to be in top 100 (ranking of the ease of doing business report) by next year," World Bank Chief Economist and Senior Vice President, Kaushik Basu said. According to Basu, who served as the top economic advisor during the Manmohan Singh regime, this is a 'remarkable achievement'. Unlike other countries, where it takes at least 3 years for a major reformation to take place, India has acquired a reasonably substantial movement in the first year itself.
Girls not safe in country: Kailash Satyarthi
Nobel laureate Kailash Satyarthi on Tuesday said that girls were "not safe" in the country, and expressed deep concern over the recent incidents of rapes of minors in the national capital which he said stood out for the sheer "apathy". The child rights activist wondered what moral argument can one give when girls are not safe in a society which also worships goddesses. "Where is the outcry?" "What moral argument one can give that we are worshipping our goddesses and girls who are our living goddesses are not safe? Simply going to India Gate with candles won't do. This is unacceptable," he said.
'Beef curry' to be back on Kerala House menu from today
Despite a bitter war of words between Centre and the Kerala government, 'beef curry' will be back on the Kerala House menu from Wednesday after it was taken off the menu following a raid by the Delhi Police. The Kerala state guesthouse had temporarily taken buffalo meat off the canteen menu, but dismissed allegations that 'beef curry' was served at its premises, saying that only buffalo meat was offered. The row over 'beef raid' further intensified after MPs from the state protested outside the Kerala House yesterday. The MPs wanted beef curry back on the menu at the Kerala House canteen. Meanwhile, BJP leaders and Delhi police Commissioner B S Bassi justified the police action in going to Kerala government's guest house, saying it was only making inquiries following a complaint and was well within its right under the law of the land.
France to introduce biometric visas to Indians from Nov 2
France will introduce biometric visas to Indian nationals from November 2, keeping in line with all the countries in the Schengen Area. "To facilitate travel throughout the Schengen Area and help issue long-term visas more easily, France, in line with all the countries of the Schengen Area, will issue biometric visas to Indian citizens with effect from 2 November 2015," a release from the French embassy said. In this context, the French Embassy in India will offer a large number of 3 or 5 year circulation visas to frequent visitors of France. However, visas issued prior to the introduction of biometrics will remain valid, the release added.
As India celebrates 70 years of freedom, Governance Now looks back and picks 70 words – or phrases, buzzwords, slogans, events – that best define this ancient nation and young democracy. Here, you will find much to be proud of, much tinged with pangs of nostalgia. Then there are entries that
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