GN Bureau | October 29, 2015
Prime minister Narendra Modi will spell out his vision for the future of his country's economic relations with Africa today (Thursday), as he addresses the major India-Africa Forum Summit in New Delhi. The premier will speak to delegates, including heads of state or officials, from all 54 African Union nations, with announcements aimed at jump-starting bilateral trade and burnishing Indian investment in the continent. Meanwhile, a day ahead of the formal summit meeting, both Modi and external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj held a record 31 structured bilateral meetings with visiting African leaders separately, discussing issues of extending more line of credit (LoC), boosting trade and investment and also combating challenges of terrorism and working together to push reforms at the United Nations.
Lashkar commander Abu Qasim killed
Top Lashkar-e-Taiba commander and mastermind of Udhampur attack Abu Qasim alias Abdur Rehman was killed in encounter in South Kashmir on early Thursday. The mastermind behind Udhampur BSF convoy attack was killed by security forces in an ambush at Khanday pora area of Kulgam district. Qasim was also involved in some of the major attacks on security forces in Kashmir. In June 2013, he attacked an army convoy at Hyderpora, in which eight Army soldiers were killed in. Qasim is believed to be a resident of Bawalpur in Pakistan.
Dawood Ibrahim not in Pakistan, says envoy
Pakistan High Commissioner to India Abdul Basit on Wednesday asserted that his country was not hiding fugitive underworld don Dawood Ibrahim. "He is not in Pakistan. Even your government is not sure about his whereabouts," he said during an interaction at an event Bengaluru. "Do share information on Dawood if you have any," he said. In his talk, Basit said since India is a big country it has more responsibilities on its shoulders to put an end to violence and Pakistan is ready to engage with India with sincerity and seriousness of purpose.
Deaf and mute Geeta sings national anthem through signs
Geeta, the deaf and mute girl who returned to India recently after inadvertently crossing into Pakistan over a decade ago, on Wednesday presented the national anthem in sign language. She is currently at Indore's residential premises of an NGO which runs an institute for the hearing and speech impaired. Geeta, who had accidentally landed in Pakistan over a decade ago, returned to India on October 26. She was reportedly just 7 or 8 years old when she was found sitting alone on the Samjhauta Express by the Pakistan Rangers 15 years ago at the Lahore railway station.
SC concerned over Muslim women facing arbitrary divorce
The Supreme Court has expressed concern over Muslim women facing arbitrary divorces and second marriages of their husbands even as their first marriages were subsisting. Expressing concern on the issue of "gender discrimination... which concerns the rights of Muslim women", the apex court bench of justice Anil Dave and Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel said the issue of rights of Muslim women against arbitrary divorce surfaced number of times but was not addressed. The court said in its judgment pronounced on October 16 that there was no safeguard "against arbitrary divorce and second marriage by her husband during currency of the first marriage, resulting in denial of dignity and security to her". The apex court said this while noting the submissions made by lawyers on the question whether the Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act, 2005 would have retrospective effect. Directing for a separate public interest litigation to address the issue, the bench issued notice to the attorney general and national legal services authority, returnable on November 23.
MHA to submit report to PMO on Kerala House beef row
Amidst threats of legal action from Kerala government, the Home Ministry will submit a report to the Prime Minister's Office on the row over Delhi police "raid" at Kerala House on a complaint that its canteen served 'beef'. The report to the PMO will be based on the information provided by the Delhi Police. The Delhi Police provided the details about the incident after home minister Rajnath Singh spoke to Delhi commissioner of police B S Bassi. The Delhi Police has conveyed that it has received a telephonic intimation from a caller on October 26 at 4.21 pm that cow meat is being served in Kerala House. A person at the canteen denied that cow meat is served. The menu was neither displayed nor shared with the police by the canteen staff. The canteen staff told that the menu is prepared on daily basis and no copy of the menu is available with them.
NGT tells Delhi civic bodies to clear garbage
The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Wednesday took suo motu cognisance of the massive amounts of garbage littered on roads due to a recent strike called by sanitation workers. "We direct all the municipal corporations to remove the garbage dumped in their areas within two days," a bench headed by NGT chairperson, Swatanter Kumar, said. The bench also issued notices to the three municipal corporations-north, east and south-and Delhi government posting the matter for further hearing on Friday. The tribunal's order came after lawyer, Sanjeev Ralli, pointed out that garbage is being dumped on the streets of Delhi and also in front of houses.
Govt may set up special regulator to look into bankruptcy cases
The government is considering setting up a special regulator to look into bankruptcy cases and may make it mandatory to take a call on whether to liquidate a company or not within 180 days, reports Economic Times. The government is working on a new bankruptcy code based on recommendations given by the TK Vishwanathan committee, which submitted its final report to the government about ten days ago, that would tilt the balance in favour of creditors. Manoj Joshi, joint economic affairs secretary, had on Tuesday said that the government is keen to present the Bankruptcy Law in the winter session of Parliament. "We are putting a lot of focus on administrative mechanism by which the bankruptcy enforcement could take place," Joshi said at a FICCI seminar in Mumbai.
Sensex starts on a cautious note
The S&P BSE Sensex started on a cautious note on Thursday ahead of October series F&O expiry due today. The Nifty50 also started weak but was trading around its crucial psychological level of 8150, led by losses in FMCG, IT, Banks, oil & gas, and power stocks. At 9.20 am the 30-share index was trading at 26,998, down 41 points or 0.15 per cent. It touched a high of 27,099.11 and a low of 26,992.53 in morning trade. The Nifty50 was at 8,150, down 20 points or 0.23 per cent. It touched a high of 8,179.60 and a low of 8,149.50 in the first 30 minutes of trade. Meanwhile, most other Asian markets traded weak following US Federal Reserve's commentary that raised possibilities of a Fed lift-off in December. Japan's Nikkei edged lower by 0.13 per cent while the South Korean Kospi was trading weak by 1.7 per cent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index was down 0.13 per cent. China's Shanghai Composite was trading higher by 0.12 per cent.
To counter Beijing’s aggressive agenda in the Indian Ocean, New Delhi is seeking to create strategic bastions in Mauritius, Seychelles and Madagascar. The immediate provocation was China’s inauguration of its first overseas military base in Djibouti, in the Horn of Africa.
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