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Showing posts from December 9, 2016

Anganwadi workers to be roped in to report child abuse(THEHINDU)

Anganwadi workers will be equipped to report cases of atrocities against children within homes and outside to the District Child Protection Unit (DCPU) or on the number 1098 at the earliest, District Collector S. Venkatesapathy has said.

He was speaking at a District Child Welfare Committee (CWC) meeting on Friday.

This was decided by the DCPU after it came to light that a child in Vellarada hid in a hole to escape the father’s beatings, and another in Neyyattinkara was being abused by the father for days.

SC says it will continue to hear Cauvery case(thehindu)

Rejecting the Centre’s stand that the Supreme Court has no jurisdiction to hear the Cauvery river dispute, the Supreme Court on Friday upheld its constitutional power to hear the appeals filed by Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala against the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal final award in 2007.

A three-judge Bench Justice Dipak Misra said the court would resume hearing the case on December 15 at 3 p.m.

Reading the operative part of the verdict, Justice Misra said the interim order to Karnataka to release 2000 cusecs of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu would continue till further orders.

The Centre had argued that the parliamentary law of Inter-State Water Disputes Act of 1956 coupled with Article 262 (2) of the Indian Constitution excluded the Supreme Court from hearing or deciding any appeals against the Cauvery Tribunal's decision. It had claimed the tribunal award was final.

“A person aggrieved can always have his remedy invoking the jurisdiction under Article 136 (appeal to the Supreme C…

Ex-IAF chief Tyagi held in Agusta case(THEHINDU)

VVIP copter deal was scrapped in Jan. 2014 due to bribery charges

Air Chief Marshal S.P. Tyagi (retd.) was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation on Friday, along with his cousin Sanjeev Tyagi and lawyer Gautam Khaitan, for alleged involvement in the Rs. 3,700-crore AgustaWestland VVIP helicopter deal case. Accused of routing the kickbacks, the lawyer was earlier arrested by the Enforcement Directorate.

The CBI has determined that about Rs. 450 crore, or 12 per cent of the Rs. 3,767-crore deal for procurement of 12 helicopters was paid as bribes. The government rescinded the contract in January 2014 in view of the bribery allegations.

A CBI spokesperson said, “Mr. Tyagi and the other two accused were summoned on Friday. They were arrested after about four hours of questioning at the agency headquarters.”

According to the official, “Mr. Tyagi allegedly entered into a conspiracy with other accused persons in 2005 and conceded to change the Air Force’s consistent stand that the 6,00…

Accounting for natural capital(THEHINDU)

Biodiversity integration into developmental plans is crucial for sustainable development

In a ‘Mann Ki Baat’ broadcast recently, Prime Minister Narendra Modi made his environmental concerns clear when he asked people to use Ganesha and Durga idols made of clay instead of plaster of Paris. His appeal is bound to stimulate our environmental consciousness and encourage the preservation of precious natural resources. We need to build on this appeal and follow an eco-friendly approach in every socio-economic activity of ours.

Biodiversity is a unique and a critical asset which is under pressure due to anthropogenic reasons, and there is a need for its mainstreaming. Biodiversity once lost is lost forever.

Biodiversity means the variability among living organisms from all sources including terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems. The diversity includes variability within species (genetic diversity) as well as between species (species diversity) and ecosystems (ecosystem diversity). It…

Making of a mammoth tragedy (THEHINDU)

The decision to demonetise will cause grievous injury to the honest Indian who earns wages in cash. The dishonest black money hoarder will get away with a mere rap on the knuckles

It is said that “money is an idea that inspires confidence”. At the stroke of the midnight hour, on November 9, 2016, the confidence of more than a billion Indians was destroyed. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had declared that more than 85 per cent of the value of money held in notes of Rs.500 and Rs.1,000 was worthless overnight. In one impetuous decision, the Prime Minister has shattered the faith and confidence that hundreds of millions of Indians had reposed in the Government of India to protect them and their money.

The Prime Minister in his address to the nation said, “there comes a time in the history of a country's development when a need is felt for a strong and decisive step,” and propounded two primary reasons for this decision. One was to check “enemies from across the border… using fake currenc…

South Korea at a crossroads (THEHINDU)

en Park Geun-hye assumed office as South Korea’s first woman President in early 2013 on a wave of popularity, not many could have foreseen her impeachment on corruption charges less than four years later. Such has been the impact of the scandal that several lawmakers from her own Saenuri Party voted in favour of the impeachment resolution brought in by the opposition in Parliament. The crisis was sparked by revelations two months ago that Ms. Park had abused her powers to help a confidante, Choi Soon-sil, extort money from companies for her foundations. Since then, the Korean media have carried stories of Ms. Choi’s access to the President’s office and her influence in decision-making. The crisis was handled ineptly by Ms. Park and her aides. She never bothered to explain her position directly to the public, and did not take her party into confidence. She stayed away from the press and the opposition, perhaps hoping the crisis would blow over. But with a 4 per cent approval rating, sh…

Cash need not be king (THEHINDU(

The government has declared an incentive package to encourage non-cash payments for fuel, new insurance policies from public sector firms, train tickets and highway toll, among other things. For credit and debit card transactions up to Rs.2,000, the Reserve Bank of India has relaxed its stringent two-factor authentication requirement, and service tax stands waived. Taken together, these moves to encourage cashless payments are significant not just because they can alleviate the cash crunch following the demonetisation of high-value notes. They could spur a change in spending habits in an economy where cash has served as the basis of around 95 per cent of all transactions. From those between traders and farmers to settling a restaurant bill, the use of cash creates a window to escape the tax net. Shopkeepers routinely ask buyers if they would like a bill or not, and those who opt for the latter to save some rupees are often left with little recourse if the goods prove to be substandard…

A doctrine of unpredictability(the hindu)

In a rapidly changing world, the Modi government’s foreign policy will require much more imagination than the shock-and-awe tactics of the past two and a half yearsA

In June this year, just after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Washington, a senior American official spoke of the “Modi Doctrine”, giving formal recognition to the foreign policy choices adopted by India since May 2014. In his speech at the U.S. Congress, Mr. Modi outlined India’s commitment to the partnership with the U.S. as being a “new symphony in play” in order to build an international maritime partnership in Asia, to play a leading role in the South Asian neighbourhood, strategically as well as for humanitarian purposes, and to take a strong position on terrorism or cross-border terrorism emanating from Pakistan.

A few months later, Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, speaking at the launch of a book, The Modi Doctrine: New Paradigms in India’s Foreign Policy, went on to define it thus: India fi…