Archive | June, 2015

Obama calls Hollande, discusses Greece debt crisis

Posted on 30 June 2015 by admin

AIHRA News Wednesday 01st July 2015

Washington, Jun 30 (PTI) US President Barack Obama and his French counterpart Francois Hollande have agreed to combine their efforts to work on a package that will return the financial crisis-hit Greece to the path of recovery.

In a telephone call to Hollande, Obama yesterday discussed the ongoing Greece crisis and also offered his condolences to him in the wake of a terror attack last week near Lyon.

“The two leaders agreed on the importance of restarting work to reach agreement on a package of reforms and financing that will allow Greece to return to growth and debt sustainability within the Eurozone,” the White House said.

The two leaders said their economic teams were in close contact and are monitoring developments in Greece and the broader financial markets, it said in a statement.

President Obama also offered his condolences for the terrorist attack and loss of life that took place last week near Lyon and underscored commitment to continue ongoing counterterrorism partnership with France, the statement said.

Obama also called British Prime Minister David Cameron to express condolences and to offer support in the aftermath of the deadly terrorist attack in Sousse in Tunisia last Friday in which around 30 British tourists were killed.

“The two leaders reaffirmed their steadfast commitment to work together with our partners in Europe, the Middle East, and around the world to confront terrorism and counter violent extremist ideologies,” it said.

They also discussed Greece and the importance of providing support for reforms that will set the country on a path toward debt sustainability and growth.

In another call to Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi, Obama offered condolences and support following the terrorist attack on Friday.

“Obama extended deep sympathy to the victims of the heinous violence and their families. The President commended the Tunisian people for their commitment to standing strong and united to reject terrorism,” the White House said.

“The President re-affirmed our readiness to assist with the investigation and pledged to continue strengthening our cooperation on counterterrorism and broader security issues with the Tunisian government,” it said.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said that it is in everyone’s interest to reach a solution that allows Greece to return to growth and debt sustainability within the Eurozone, and they can do that if it’s coupled with a package of reforms and financing.

“We have seen strong statements from the leaders of Greece, also from the leaders of the Eurozone countries, reiterating their view that Greece should remain part of the European currency union. And we hope that all sides will continue to act in that spirit,” he said.

Earnest said the crisis in Greece did not pose a major direct risk to American banking system.

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Jaya wins by 1.5 lakh margin, asserts supremacy

Posted on 30 June 2015 by admin

AIHRA News Wednesday 01st July 2015

Chennai, Jun 30 (PTI) AIADMK chief and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa today recorded an impressive victory in the R K Nagar by-election with a margin of 1,50,722 votes, trouncing her nearest CPI rival C Mahendran who forfeited his deposit like other contestants.

Expressing joy and thanking the electorate for giving her a huge victory, Jayalalithaa said, “It is a historic win, I assure that I will tirelessly work to fulfil the voters’ expectations, and needs.”

Out of the total votes polled in the city constituency, a massive 88.43 per cent of the electorate had voted “for me which is historic,” she said.

The AIADMK chief had an unassailable lead of several thousand votes right from the start when counting began at 8 AM.

At the end of the 17th round, she secured 1,60,432 votes and Mahendran 9,710 votes out of the total 1,81,420 votes.

Of these, 2376 were ‘None of the Above’ (NOTA) votes and 1,79,044 for the contestants. Maverick social activist ‘Traffic’ Ramaswamy managed to get 4,590 votes.

The by-election was necessitated following AIADMK’s P Vetrivel vacating the seat in May, apparently to enable Jayalalithaa seek re-election.

She had to fulfil the constitutional requirement of getting elected as MLA within six months of becoming Chief Minister.

The AIADMK chief said the bypoll was held as a forerunner to the next year’s assembly elections and indicated that her party was poised for a repeat of such a victory.

Tamil Nadu Governor K Rosaiah and Union Minister of State and senior BJP leader Pon Radhakrishnan were among those who congratulated Jayalalithaa on her massive win.

The chief minister assured the electorate she would work for their welfare in keeping with the faith they had reposed in her. She also thanked her party workers and leaders of the alliance parties.

As soon as the news of her victory spread, senior AIADMK leaders led by former Chief Minister O Panneerselvam went into celebration mode and were seen distributing sweets.

In Srirangam in Tiruchirappalli district, from where she had successfully contested last time, party workers celebrated by dancing and distributing sweets besides bursting crackers.

They also offered prayers at various places of worship.

In the R K Nagar constituency, party supporters played popular songs of films featuring AIADMK founder MGR and Jayalalithaa while thanking the electorate for the massive victory.

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Greece crisis may trigger outflows from India: Fin Secy

Posted on 29 June 2015 by admin

AIHRA News Tuesday 30th June 2015

New Delhi, Jun 29 (PTI) The economic crisis in Greece may trigger capital outflows from India and the government is consulting the RBI to deal with the situation, Finance Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi said on Monday.

Stating that the Greece situation has no direct impact on India, he said there may be some indirect effect via Europe on capital inflows and outflows here.

“Greece criss does not have any effect directly on India.

(But) interest rate may firm up in Europe. In case of firming up of interest rate in Europe, there can be outflow of capital from India,” Mehrishi told reporters here.

Terming the situation as dynamic and evolving, he said, the crisis may have an indirect impact on India by way of its outcome on the European currency euro.

“To the extent it affects the euro, there might be some indirect impact on India. If yields on euro bonds go up, then it might impact inflows and outflows from India,” he said.

He said nobody can predict how the situation evolves.

“Obviously we are in touch with the RBI but they will do what they have to do,” he said.

Asked if any Indian company has an exposure in Greece, he said, “I don’t know.”

“If yields on G-Sec go on in the US, then it might impact inflows and outflows in India. We really don’t know how they (foreign investors) will relocate their portfolio,” he added.

Greece early on Monday imposed capital controls and closed banks until at least July 6 after Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras decided to call a July 5 referendum on a proposed bailout package.

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India, Thai sign multiple treaties, including DTAT

Posted on 29 June 2015 by admin

AIHRA News Tuesday 30th June 2015

Bangkok, Jun 29 (PTI) India and Thailand today signed a number of important agreements, including the double taxation avoidance treaty, and exchanged instruments of ratification on the extradition treaty inked in 2013, which provides for the legal framework for seeking extradition of fugitive offenders.

The tax treaty provides for the framework to avoid double taxation and prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes so as to promote bilateral economic cooperation.

On the last day of her three-day visit, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj co-chaired the 7th meeting of the India-Thailand Joint Commission for Bilateral Cooperation.

The extradition treaty signed between the two countries in 2013 provides for the legal framework for seeking extradition of fugitive offenders, including those involved in terrorism, transnational crimes, economic offences etc.

The treaty provides for the extradition of any person, who is wanted for trial or for the imposition or enforcement of any sentence by one Contracting state and is found in the territory of the other Contracting state.

The exchange of instruments will help both the countries in expedited extradition of fugitives. This treaty will further strengthen the relationship between the security agencies of the two countries, officials said.

The two sides also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the Establishment of Nalanda University. By signing this agreement, Thailand joins other East Asian Summit countries in the establishment of Nalanda University in Bihar.

The agreements were signed by Swaraj and Thai Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Gen Tanasak Patimapragorn.

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Prabhu to inaugurate Integrated Security System in Mumbai

Posted on 29 June 2015 by admin

AIHRA News Monday 29th June 2015

Mumbai, Jun 29 (PTI) Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu will today inaugurate the Integrated Security System (ISS) installed with a total cost Rs 21.72 crore at four railway stations in the metropolis comprising CST, Dadar, Kurla and LTT.

He will also inaugurate the modified foot over bridge (FOB) to facilitate passenger movement at Diva, new FOB at Vithalwadi apart from laying the foundation stone of a multi-level two-wheeler parking at Thane.

According to PR department of Central Railway, a total of 118 CCTVs have been installed at Dadar station as part of ISS along with six monitors of 42 inches.

While describing salient features of modified FOB at Diva, the statement said the width of extended foot over bridge is four meters and the length is 2.5 meters across PF No 1 and 2 with an approximate cost at Rs 75 lakhs.

On multi-level two-wheeler parking at Thane, it said that under Phase-I, the work for the ground plus two structure involving shifting of some offices on the proposed site was completed in June 2015.

Under Phase-II, work on parking is expected to be complete by December 2016. The total parking area after this would be 3000 sqmt against the 700 sqmt earlier. The total cost of the project is Rs 5.50 crore,” said the statement.

The new FOB at Vithalwadi has been built with a total cost of Rs 2.34 crore which has the width of 4.88 meters and length is 30 meters.

Minister of State for Power Piyush Goyal, New and Renewable Energy Minister Divakar Raote, Maharashtra Transport Minister Subhash Desai, Industries Minister Eknath Shinde along with other ministers would be present on the occasion.

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Need second Green Revolution without any delay: PM

Posted on 29 June 2015 by admin

AIHRA News Monday 29th June 2015

Hazaribagh, June 28 (PTI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi today called for second Green Revolution, saying it should start immediately from eastern India.

He said Indian agriculture has been lagging in several areas including inputs, irrigation, value addition and market linkages and his government was committed to modernizing the sector and making it more productive.

“We have seen the first Green Revoltuion but it happened several years ago. Now it is the demand of time that there should be second Green Revolution without any delay. And where is it possible? It is possible in eastern UP, Bihar, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Assam, Odhisa,” Modi said while laying foundation stone of Indian Agricultural Research Institute at Barhi.

“That is why the government is focuing on the development of this area. For that we have started this research institute,” the Prime Minister said.

He said urea plants in this area have been closed and a decision has been taken to reopen them as farmers will need fertilizers.

Emphasising the need for use of scientific methods for farming to increase productivity, Modi said “Unless we prepare a balanced and a comprehensive integrated plan, we will not be able to change the lives of farmers.”

Pitching for ‘per drop, more crop’, Modi stressed the need for research in the field of agriculture to determine the health of soil and its needs in terms of seeds, water quantity, amount of fertilization etc.

He said the government was taking steps to train youth in soil testing so that such labs could be set up on the pattern of pathological labs for humans. “This will also lead to job creation,” he added.

Turning to pulses, he said India has to import these because of shortfall in production and noted that a special package has been given to farmers engaged in cultivation of pulses.

“The production of pulses in the country is very low and I urge farmers that if they have five acres of farming land, use four acres for other crops but cultivate pulses on at least one acre,” Modi said.

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Delhi govt moves HC to restrain Meena from entering ACB office

Posted on 27 June 2015 by admin

AIHRA News Sunday 28th June 2015

New Delhi, Jun 27 (PTI) Intensifying its battle against the Lt Governor and the Centre, Delhi Government today urged the High Court here to issue directions to restrain LG- appointee ACB chief M K Meena from entering his office and “interfering” with the functioning of the anti-graft body.

The Aam Aadmi Party government filed a fresh application in the ongoing litigation challenging the Centre’s notification giving Lt Governor Najeeb Jung absolute powers to appoint bureaucrats in the capital, after AAP government- nominated Anti-Corruption Branch (ACB) chief S S Yadav accused Meena of threatening and pressuring him.

The face-off between the LG and Arvind Kejriwal’s government has resulted in the ACB now having two chiefs.

In its application filed through standing Counsel Raman Duggal, the city government alleged that “M K Meena has been misusing his powers to browbeat and threaten officials of ACB and the Vigilance Department.

“On numerous occasions he has put pressure on ACB officers to transfer all cases of corruption involving police personnel from ACB to Delhi Police.”

It also alleged that the “Centre has been repeatedly attempting to interfere with and hamper the smooth functioning of the ACB. The notification which have been impugned in the writ petition were the first attempt in this direction.”

The AAP government has also sought direction to implead Meena as party in the main petition, which has challenged a May 21 notification and the July 23, 2014 notification limiting the ACB’s jurisdiction to Delhi government officials only and not the city police which is under the Centre.

“Pass an order restraining Meena, 1989-batch Indian Police Service officer, Joint Commissioner/New Delhi Range from entering the office of ACB of the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi and from interfering in any manner with functioning of the ACB,” the application, which is likely to be heard on Monday, said.

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Raje leaves Delhi without meeting BJP top brass

Posted on 27 June 2015 by admin

AIHRA News Sunday 28th June 2015

New Delhi, Jun 27 (PTI) Embattled Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje today attended a NITI Aayog deliberation here but left the capital without meeting either Prime Minister Narendra Modi or BJP chief Amit Shah.

Raje, who has been facing mounting opposition pressure to quit in connection with the ‘Lalitgate’, arrived at around 9:30 AM and left the city after spending close to four hours.

Party sources were tight-lipped on whether the Rajasthan Chief Minister had sought any appointment to meet either the Prime Minister or the party President.

Last night, after a meeting between Modi and Shah, party sources indicated that the top leadership of the party had accepted Raje’s defence in the controversy.

Yesterday, Rajasthan BJP refuted all the allegations being levelled at her, saying that the document which she signed in support of Modi’s immigration application to the UK government was never produced in court as she had backed out of it later.

The state unit of the party also claimed that Modi’s investment in the chain of hotels owned by her son was legal and had been disclosed to authorities.

Congress has been piling up pressure on BJP to sack Raje, accusing her of quid pro quo in helping the former IPL boss.

Raje has maintained silence over the raging row even though her office has termed the allegations “untrue”, claiming that they were aimed at harming her politically.

BJP for its part has said it “fully supports” her. The party has called her its tallest and most popular leader in the state, where she has led the party to its biggest Assembly and Lok Sabha wins.

Raje was scheduled to visit London from June 27 to July 2 but cancelled the trip early this week in view of the NITI Aayog meet.

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Prez stresses on ’self-imposed code of conduct’ for media

Posted on 26 June 2015 by admin

AIHRA News Saturday 27th June 2015

Pune, June 26 (PTI) With the issue of “paid news” apparently weighing heavily on his mind, President Pranab Mukherjee today made a strong pitch for self-correcting mechanisms to check any aberrations.

“Regulation and restraint cannot come from any external source, but internally from system itself… from self-imposed code of conduct,” Mukherjee said here.

Noting that media has an important role to play in a democracy, he said newspapers must be keepers of the conscience of the country.

They have to be active participants in the continuing endeavour to nurture a democratic republic committed to achieving justice and securing the fundamental freedoms to all its citizens.

“Democracy is not just a government of the people, for the people and by the people. It can be institutionalised only through constant dialogue.

“The media as a whole not only keeps people informed but also performs a very crucial function of presenting ideas and alternatives in the domain of policy formulation and implementation,” he said at a function where he presented the ‘Punyabhushan Award’ to Pratap Pawar, head of the Sakal Group of newspapers.

Congratulating Pawar, the President said his contributions to Indian media through Sakal Media group as also to the industrial development of the region and social activities was well known.

Former Union Minister Sharad Pawar, the elder brother of Pratap, said that the influence of their mother Sharda has helped them work for the larger social cause.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis hailed the efforts of Pratap Pawar and the voluntary women’s groups set up in the countryside by Sakal to promote the government’s programme of water conservation.

Maharashtra Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao presided over the function.

Iconic personalities like Pandit Bhimsen Joshi, SL Kirloskar, PL Deshpande, yoga guru BKS Iyengar and many others are among the past recipients of the Punyabhushan (Pride of Pune) Award.

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Lalit Modi controversy: Raje again rubbishes reports

Posted on 26 June 2015 by admin

AIHRA News Saturday 27th June 2015

Jaipur, June 26 (PTI) Facing opposition heat over the Lalit Modi controversy, beleaguered Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje for the second day today dismissed media reports surrounding her, including that of a signature campaign by 120 party MLAs in her support.

In a statement, a CMO spokesman said the Chief Minister holds “jansunwai” (public hearing) at her residence every Friday, and for this many MLAs come with the public of their constituency for putting forward their problems and demands.

“Similarly today, the CM is holding public hearing in which MLAs and party workers are meeting”, the spokesman said.

“The news of signature by 120 MLAs (in her support) is completely wrong. It is not fair to link public hearing with a different view”, he said.

The CMO said the Chief Minister never asked or made any call to MLAs to show their strength and support.

This is the second day that her office has rubbished media reports surrounding her.

The Chief Minister’s Press Advisor had said last night that “false” reports were being run on the basis of “rumours” to tarnish her image and cause “political damage”.

The Chief Minister is in the dock for reportedly giving an affidavit in favour of Lalit Modi, former IPL Commissioner who is facing ED probe into alleged money laundering in connection with organising of IPL tournament.

Lalit Modi has made London his home ever since the probe began in 2010.

The CMO said today that some channels were still broadcasting “baseless and untrue” news.

“The Chief Minister has not made any such statements shown in TV news channels. Some media channels were running news to tarnish the political image of Chief Minister”, he said.

The CMO advised the media to carry only confirmed news.

Raje, meanwhile, started her public hearing at 1000 hrs which was being attended by hundreds of people at her residence.

A number of the Chief Minister’s cabinet colleagues including R S Rathore, Yunus Khan, Krishnendra Kaur Deepa and MLAs, and state BJP President Ashok Parnami were present during the hearing which was still underway, the press advisor told PTI.

Media persons were not allowed access to the public hearing, the advisor said.

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