GN Bureau | October 9, 2015
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday sacked food and civil supplies minister Asim Ahmed Khan over corruption charges. Khan was sacked for allegedly demanding money from a professor. “We have received a complaint, assessed it and have decided to remove Asim Ahmed from the Cabinet. The complainant has sent us a one hour long audio clip, I and Manish Sisodia listened to that audio clip, we did preliminary assessment of that and prima facie found it to be of serious nature, Kejriwal told reporters. The Delhi CM, while maintaining that whosoever indulges in corruption will not be spared, said, “I will not spare even my son if he is found guilty of corruption.” The case has been referred to CBI, Kejriwal said.
Nepal forms panel to ease political standoff with India
After war of words and border tension, the Nepal government on Friday formed a three-member panel to talk with India to end the current political and diplomatic standoff and ensure smooth supply of essential commodities, including petroleum products. Nepal has been facing a crisis after thousands of Nepal-bound trucks remain stranded at the Nepal-India border following violent demonstrations, protests and unrest in Nepal against the newly-adopted constitution. Nepal is reeling under shortage of fuel, medicine and other goods.
Telangana shutdown on Saturday
Opposition parties have called for a shutdown in Telangana on Saturday to force the government to take immediate steps to check farmers' suicides. The main opposition parties - the Congress, TDP, the BJP and the Left parties -- have called for the shutdown. Several people's organisations have announced their support. The opposition parties have called for a state-wide shutdown to demand one-time waiver of farmers' loans.
Parrikar sees problems in having women fighter pilots
After the announcement by Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha on Thursday that women will soon be inducted as fighter pilots, defence minister Manohar Parrikar on Friday said there "can be operational and training problems" in inducting women fighter pilots in the Indian Air Force (IAF)."In principle we support this. Yes, there can be operational and training problems, but except for that, I see no reason why women should not participate," Parrikar said.
RJD complaint against PM's 'shaitan' comment
RJD today moved the election commission against prime minister Narendra Modi for his 'shaitan' remarks, accusing him of using "disparaging and insulting" language against party chief Lalu Prasad and Yadav caste and urged the poll panel not to allow him address further rallies. The RJD complaint was submitted to Chief Electoral Officer of the state Ajay Nayak by party national spokesman Manoj Jha and his state counterpart Chitranjan Gagan who drew the poll panel's attention to PM Modi's remark that "Hamara mukabala Shaitan se (now our political contest is with devil)". At Munger yesterday, the PM had said Lalu Prasad cannot absolve himself of his beef remarks by claiming that it was the "devil" (shaitan) on his tongue which made him say it, and added "I want to know how the shaitan got the address (of Lalu)...he recognises that it was the shaitan in a similar manner as people recognise their relatives."
Supreme court rejects plea for death in Katara case
Nitish Katara's killers Vikas and Vishal Yadav will not be given the death penalty, the Supreme Court ruled today saying the 2002 murder was not an honour killing and could not be called a rarest of rare case. Vikas and Vishal Yadav, cousins, have been sentenced to 30 years in jail by the Delhi High Court for the young executive's murder. Nitish's mother Neelam Katara had moved the court seeking the death penalty for them, arguing that the murder was an honour killing. Rejecting her plea, the court observed today that "it is just a murder and not heinous. What the accused did is condemnable but does not call for the death penalty."
Nitish Katara was 25 when he was burnt to death in Ghaziabad near Delhi. He was dating Bharti Yadav, daughter of politician DP Yadav. The young couple was attending a wedding party when Katara was abducted and set on fire by Bharti's brother Vikas and her cousin Vishal.
Pak is dangerous country for world: Ex-CIA official
Pakistan is probably the most dangerous country for the world as it is ripe with the threats of terrorism, a failing economy and the fastest growing nuclear arsenal, a retired CIA official has said. "While Pakistan is not the most dangerous country in the world, it is probably the most dangerous country for the world, and as such, a serious case for close and continued US engagement with Pakistan can be made," Kevin Hulbert, a former top intelligence officer who retired in June 2014, wrote in an op-ed in The Cipher Brief. The Cipher Brief provides analysis of global threats facing businesses and organizations.
Baba Ramdev's Patanjali tie-up with Big Bazar's Future group
Retail major Future Group today entered into a partnership with Baba Ramdev-promoted Patanjali Ayurved to sell the latter's FMCG products through its stores. Future Group expect sales from Patanjali, which is set to launch noodles next week to take advantage of the space vacated by Nestle's Maggi, to the tune of Rs 1,000 crore in next 20 months. Patanjali is also planning to launch products like pasta, oats, juices, muesli soon and is targeting to achieve Rs 5,000 crore turnover this fiscal.
Fresh tax notice sent to Nokia India
Income Tax Department has slapped fresh tax notice on Nokia India. The Finnish telecom firm, however, wants the fresh demand to be included in the ongoing negotiations between India and Finland to resolve the Rs 2,000-crore tax dispute. The department had in 2013 slapped a tax notice of Rs 2,000 crore on Nokia's Indian subsidiary for violating the withholding tax norms since 2006 while making royalty payments to the parent company in Finland. Nokia's mobile unit has now been sold off to Microsoft, but the Chennai factory, which is involved in the tax dispute was not included in the deal.
Sensex ends 234 points higher, Nifty at 8,190
The domestic stock market closed near its seven-week high as the benchmark indices posted gains for the second consecutive week. The market was buoyed by the rally seen in other Asian and European markets. The S&P BSE Sensex rose 234 points, or 0.87 per cent, on Friday to close at 27,079 while the 50-stock barometer Nifty50 ended 60 points, or 0.74 per cent, higher at 8,190.
Fire on the Ganges: Life among the Dead in Banaras By Radhika Iyengar 4th Estate / HarperCollins, 348 pages, 599
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