Morning briefing: Modi tweets to 'vote in large numbers' as Bihar polls begin

Modi tweets,Bihar polls

GN Staff | October 12, 2015

#bihar elections   #narendra modi   #punjab   #infosys   #chemists   #shiv sena   #kasuri   #mumbai  

Voting for the first phase of assembly elections  in 49 constituencies is underway in Bihar today. Prime minister Narendra Modi on Monday tweeted "Urging all those voting today in Bihar to vote in large numbers. I particularly urge my young friends to cast their vote." Over 1.35 crore voters will decide the electoral fortune of 583 candidates. Central paramilitary forces have been deployed at every booth as most of the areas are naxal infested.
Meanwhile, Modi's rally in Bhabua today has triggered protest with the opposition grand alliance complaining to the Election Commission that the rally's live telecast would be a violation of the model code of conduct.

Bihar minister Kushwaha quits over bribe sting video

In a big embarrassment for the Nitish Kumar government a day before the first phase of Bihar polls, a sting video surfaced on Sunday showing senior minister Awadhesh Prasad Kushwaha purportedly accepting bribe after which he resigned. The video went viral on social networking sites where Kushwaha was shown accepting money from a Mumbai-based businessman in return for favours. Kushwaha is heard telling the businessman that crores of rupees are needed to be spent during elections following which the latter hands over wads of currency notes to him. The JD(U) leader also assures the businessman that he would get his work done once his alliance returns to power.

Kasuri's book today amid Shiv Sena threat in Mumbai

Pakistan's former foreign minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri's book will be launched today in Mumbai despite threats from Shiv Sena. Kasuri is scheduled to attend the launch of his book 'Neither a Hawk nor a Dove: An Insider's Account of Pakistan's Foreign Policy' at 5.30 pm.  The Sena, which shares power with the BJP in Maharashtra, has written to the director of Worli's Nehru Centre, the launch venue, to cancel the show because of the Pakistan connection. However, Maharashtra's home department, headed by BJP chief minister Devendra Fadnavis, has assured the organisers of full security cover.

Modi calls Badal as Indian Mandela, Twitter reacts in amusement
On JP Narayan's birthday on Sunday, Narendra Modi spoke at an event to felicitate those who fought against Emergency and paid rich tribute to all those who raised their voice during that period. Modi felicitated veteran BJP leader LK Advani, Shiromani Akali Dal chief Parkash Singh Badal, four Governors Kalyan Singh, OP Kohli, Balram Dass Tandon and Valubhai Vala, former Deputy Speaker Kariya Munda, besides BJP leaders VK Malhotra, Jaywantiben Mehta and Subramanian Swamy. But while talking about Punjab CM Parkash Singh Badal, Modi dubbed him as "India's Nelson Mandela" for spending long years in jail like the African leader. However, many Twiter users found it amusing and soon #YoBadalSoMandela started to trend.

Chemists and medical shops to be closed on Wednesday due to strike
The All India Organisation of Chemists and Druggists (AIOCD) has organised a strike on October 14. As a result, most of the pharmacies and drug stores will stay shut on Wednesday. The strike has been called because the AIOCD wants a ban on sale of medicines online. The online sales of medicines will affect eight lakh chemists across India. AIOCD has stated that fake drugs could also enter the market as a result of online sales and that it was dangerous to sell medicines without a prescription.

India, Chinese armies hold anti-terror drills in China
The fifth round of joint India-China anti-terrorism military exercises, code-named "Hand-in-Hand 2015" commenced in the Chinese city of Kunming on Sunday. The 10-day drills will focus on various aspects of anti-terrorism operations.In last year's exercises held at Pune the drills focussed on practices learnt while tackling insurgency and terrorism, thereby promoting healthy military-to-military relations between the two armies.

Infosys Q2 profit beats estimates, CFO quits
Infosys on Monday delivered ahead of Street estimates for a second straight time, with profit, sales and dollar revenues beating expectations in the September quarter. India's second biggest outsourcer reported a net profit of Rs 3,400 crore on sales of Rs 15,635 crore, while constant currency revenue jumped 6.9 per cent sequentially to $2,392 million. The company declared an interim dividend of Rs 10 per share. However, a scaling down of annual sales projection in US dollar terms, from 7-9 per cent to 6-8 per cent, weighed on Infosys shares. The surprise resignation of its Chief Financial Officer Rajiv Bansal also hit sentiments in the stock. Infosys on Monday announced that MD Ranganath will replace Mr Bansal as the CFO.

Sensex rallies over 100 points; Nifty reclaims 8,200
The S&P BSE Sensex traded rangebound after surging over 100 points in trade on Monday following positive trend seen in other Asian markets. The 30-share index was trading at 27,182, up 102 points or 0.38 per cent. It touched a high of 27,305.04 and a low of 27,157.47 in morning trade. The Nifty was at 8,204.90, up 14 points or 0.18 per cent. It touched a high of 8,244.50 and a low of 8,202.95 in the first 30 minutes of trade. Most Asian markets traded with steady gains. South Korea's Kospi traded higher by 0.4 per cent while Taiwan stock were higher by 1.4 per cent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up by 1.5 per cent. China's Shanghai Composite was also trading higher by 3.5 per cent.

Disabled married daughter can’t avail CGHS benefits
A disabled but married daughter of a government employee cannot be entitled to subsidised medical facilities under the Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS) unlike the son in the same situation. As per the 2007 order, a son of a government employee who is suffering from any disability of any kind is entitled to CGHS facilities for life till he does not start earning. If the son is normal, he can avail CGHS facilities only till he turns 25 or starts earning, whichever is earlier. But a daughter—disabled or not—can't avail of CGHS facilities by virtue of being a child of a government employee once she is married or starts earning, whichever is earlier. The department of pensions and pensioners welfare had asked the health ministry to "examine the suggestion" of pensioner organisations for extension of CGHS facilities to married disabled/mentally retarded daughter of a government employee. The health ministry rejected the suggestion.

Women will be included in counter-terror operations
Women officers will not only be inducted in the air force, but women will also be included in counter-terrorism operations inside the country, Union defence minister Manohar Parrikar said in Panaji on Sunday evening. He said that rebels and naxals are seen including women fighters and proven that they can be equally combative as fighters. He said that women will be used for combat patrolling and other such duties in the air force as the ministry is aware that a woman officer can be captured by the enemy forces and 'manhandled to exert psychological pressure on the country.'

Panel to monitor and suggest changes in high-value projects
The government has set up a committee for innovative collaborations and to incorporate latest solutions that science and technology has to offer. The committee will consider projects in areas such as infrastructure, manufacturing and science and technology involving investments of Rs 2,000 crore and more. The committee, headed by Niti Aayog vice chairman Arvind Panagariya, will have the power to suggest changes in concession agreements, procurement procedures and the overall structuring of project proposals. In case any ministry differs with its recommendations, the matter will be directly taken up by the cabinet, reports Economic Times. Other members of the panel are former central vigilance commissioner P Shankar and former cabinet secretary KM Chandrashekhar. The secretaries of economic affairs and the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP) will also be on the panel. Invitees will include the concerned secretary of the ministry or department and the relevant state's chief secretary.



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