Morning briefing: Digital India launch today

A brief look at what is ahead and what happened overnight.

GN Bureau | July 1, 2015



PM Narendra Modi to launch ‘Digital India Week' today
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch the 'Digital India Week' in the national capital Wednesday with a view to empower the people of the country through the Digital India Programme.Digital India aims to transform the country into a digitally empowered knowledge economy.

Read More: Digital India will touch, empower you

Sensex rises 130 points, airline stocks jump on IndiGo IPO plans
At 10 am the S&P BSE Sensex was up 129.97 points, or 0.47%, to 27,910.80. Airline stocks rise after InterGlobe Aviation Ltd, which runs India’s largest airline by market share IndiGo, and its existing investors announced plans to sell around 10% of their equity to raise around Rs.2,500 crore. SpiceJet Ltd climbs 3.8% to Rs.19.05, while Jet Airways India Ltd is up 2.5% to Rs.288.70.

Railway ticket refund rules revised from today
To ehlp early confirmation of wait-listed passengers the railways have revised rules for refund of cancelled railway tickets. Passengers will have to present their confirmed tickets at least 48 hours before the journey instead of existing 24 hours to get the maximum refund. To get a refund with cancellation charges of 25 percent of the fare, passengers will now have to cancel their confirmed tickets within 48 hours and at least six hours before the train's departure against the existing four hours.

First batch of Amarnath Yatra pilgrims flagged off from Jammu
First batch of Amarnath Yatra pilgrims was flagged off from Jammu base camp early Wednesday. Amid tight security arrangements the first batch of over 5,000 pilgrims left for 3,888-metre high cave shrine in south Kashmir Himalayas.

Pankaja Munde to brief media to clarify stand on corruption allegations
Maharashtra Women and Child Welfare Minister Pankaja Munde will on Wednesday hold a press conference to clarify her stand on the charges of corruption levelled at her.

Disappointment over reforms
Global rating agency Moody's is disappointed with the government's reforms process and subdued rural economy and downgraded India's rating. It said there were concerns about risk of policy stagnation and "some disappointment" has emerged over the pace of reforms under the Modi government.In its latest 'Inside India' report, Moody's Investors Service said the consensus view on India's economic growth prospects is relatively optimistic and in line with Moody's baseline forecast of 7.5%.

Bharatiya Mahila Bank may be merged with SBI
Bharatiya Mahila Bank (BMB), launched only 20 months ago, may be merged with the State Bank of India due to concerns over expansion challenges in terms of establishment of branches.

Delhi Assembly passes budget for 2015-16
The Delhi Assembly today passed the Rs 41,129 crore budget for 2015-16 -- the first by the AAP government -- with a major focus on education, health and transport sectors. Due to hike in entertainment tax watching movies in multiplexes willbe expensive and Rs 40 additional levy on cable TV/DTH services also makes home entertainment tooo dear.

Permission norms to be changed for govt staff going abroad
The government may set a time limit of 15 days to decide on permission to travel abroad by a government official. However, there could be stricter norms for the officials handling a large amount of cash or having access to government secrets, says a draft prepared by Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT).

Activists move Supreme Court seeking CBI probe into Vyapam deaths

Two key whistleblowers in the Vyapam scam in Madhya Pradesh approached the Supreme Court on Tuesday, seeking a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) investigation into mysterious deaths of witnesses in the case. Congress leader Digvijay Singh has also approached the Supreme Court seeking CBI investigation into the case under apex court monitoring.

Lalit Modi claims Varun Gandhi offered a deal to settle case with Congress
Lalit Modi, who is accused of financial irregularities and money laundering by the Enforcement Directorate, has now targeted young BJP MP Varun Gandhi, claiming that he had met him in London a few years ago and said that he will settle 'everything' with the help of his aunt - Congress chief Sonia Gandhi.Varun Gandhi  accepted that he had met Lalit Modi at his London residence three years ago but completely denied that he had offered to settle all legal matters.

Google Maps now available in 12 more Indian cities
People can now see traffic information for 12 new cities- Kolkata, Thiruvananthapuram, Bhopal, Coimbatore, Lucknow, Surat, Indore, Ludhiana, Visakhapatnam, Nagpur, Kochi and Madurai on Google Maps.This latest update to Google Maps makes traffic information available for all national highways and expressways in India.

Pollution monitoring devices in over 900 industrial units

A total of 920 industries in India have installed 24X7 pollution monitoring devices and another 400 have moved towards zero liquid discharge (ZLD), Environment, Forests and Climate Change Minister Prakash Javadekar said on Tuesday.

Facebook launches new version of Lite for 2G users in India

Social networking site Facebook has launched a new light version of its app on the popular Android platform to tap the 2G using population of the country.The Lite app, which is less than 1MB, can be downloaded from the Play Store. The app uses a compression technology wherein most of the heavy lifting is done on Facebook's servers.

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Pilot project in Ranchi for PDS subsidy transfer

After Chandigarh, Puducherry and Dadra & Nagar Haveli, the government is now looking at subsidy transfer scheme for Public Distribution System (PDS) in Ranchi through a pilot project.   But, there is a crucial difference between the Ranchi project and the initiative alrea

Terror funding through cross LoC trade in Valley unearthed

Much before the National Investigating Agency (NIA) had arrested seven Hurriyat leaders on Sunday in connection with the funding of terror activities in Kashmir, the agency had unearthed a racket involving undervaluation of the goods coming from the Pakistan occupied Kashmir for trade in Jammu and Kashmir

Key to India’s success is its diversity: President Kovind

“The key to India’s success is its diversity,” said Ram Nath Kovind after being sworn-in as president at the Central Hall of parliament on Tuesday.   “Our diversity is the core that makes us so unique. In this land we find a mix of states and regions,

AAI signs MoU with Uttarakhand govt to strengthen civil aviation

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) has signed an agreement with Uttarakhand government and Uttarakhand Civil Aviation Development Authority (UCADA) to develop the civil aviation sector in the state.   The agreement is aimed to identify relevant factors influencing the deve

Agreements signed to purchase 1050 MW of wind power

Union minister of state for power, coal, new and renewable energy and mines, Piyush Goyal was present at the signing of power purchase agreements (PPAs) for purchase of 1050 MW of wind power under the ministry of new and renewable energy’s (MNRE) first wind auction scheme.  

Timely delivery

Government projects typically suffer from time overrun and cost overrun. There appears to be no project management discipline, and extension of time and escalation of cost rarely attract the kind of serious attention they should. There is no system of fixation of accountability for these substantial deviat





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Madras High Court makes Vande Mataram mandatory in schools and colleges in Tamilnadu

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