Thursday, January 5, 2017

Eight opposition parties demand postponement of Budget

Eight opposition parties including Congress, JD(U), and TMC today met the Election Commission and demanded that the budget should be presented after 8th of March which is the last day of voting in states going to polls.
Talking to media in New Delhi, senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said, budget carries populist measures, therefore free and fair elections cannot be ensured if the budget is presented on the proposed date. Mr Azad said that opposition parties told the Election Commission that Budget can be used by BJP to influence voters in poll-bound states.
Earlier, opposition parties had written to President Pranab Mukherjee to postpone the presentation of budget on 1st of February claiming that it will influence the assembly polls in five states including Uttar Pradesh.
Uttar Pradesh, BSP supremo Mayawati today released a list of one hundred candidates for the upcoming Assembly elections in the state. These tickets have been given for the constituencies in districts of western UP including Muzaffarnagar, Sambhal, Bijnore, Saharanpur, Gautam Budh Nagar, Bulandshahr, Aligarh, Etah, Agra, Hatras, Moradabad and Rampur.
In most of these districts, the election will be held in the first phase. A total of 17 candidates belong to the Scheduled Castes, whereas a total of 36 Muslims have been given the ticket. The prominent names who made to the list today, include Noor Salim Rana, Ramveer Upadhyay and Nawab Kazim Ali Khan alias Naved Mian, who switched to BSP from Congress recently. A total of 303 more candidates are to be announced by the party for the remaining constituencies.
Uttar Pradesh, Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav took a meeting of his supporters including MPs, MLAs, MLCs and other leaders at his official residence today. It is learnt that over two hundred MLAs attended the meeting, including some who till now were in Shivpal group.
During the meeting, Mr Akhilesh Yadav is understood to have discussed key issues after declaration of poll dates and also the steps to be taken in current political scenario. Meanwhile, Mr Shivpal had a brief meeting with Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav in Lucknow early this morning, and afterwards they left for Delhi, where sources said that they will go to Election Commission with Mr Amar Singh to present their side.

Virginia Zanetti’s “The Pillars of the Earth”

Photo: Parvindar Singh
Virginia Zanetti’s “The Pillars of the Earth”
Curated by Ravi Agarwal
Preview: Friday, 6th January 2017 @ 6:30 pm
The exhibition will remain open till Friday, 10th February 2017
Venue: Italian Embassy Cultural Centre, 50-E Chandragupta Marg (Entry from Nyaya Marg), Chanakyapuri

A collective action that gives a new view on the possibility of people’s emancipation. The action reverses the perspective: the individual supports the world, along with others, crucial nuance whether to play an active or a passive role in society. Lasting peace and the well-being of human beings does not depend only on the reform of society but also on the transformation of every individual’s life, which can contribute to change both the destiny of a nation and the fate of humanity. Aiming at reversing the point of view, sharing the experience with people from different areas, creating a new wandering community in search of a new ethics or spirituality. The work explores the concepts of rebirth and revolution through the reversal of the vision. Walking to reach tops from which you may “see” better, we talk, exchange ideas and create spontaneously a new community of people. People doing handstand are supporting the world becoming the Pillars of the Earth and trigger a process of collective construction of new concepts and new ways.
About the artist:

Photo: Nicolò Paroli
Virginia Zanetti was born in Fiesole, Florence in 1981. She lives and works in Prato. Her artistic practice is a dialogue with the unfathomable content inside and outside us. She works on relationships, roles and principles that govern phenomena, searching a point of tangency between the Western and Eastern culture. She won the Movin’Up prize for young Italian artist by the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Activities and Tourism (MIBACT). Her work is quoted in many articles and in several publications such as H.U. Obrist’s A Cielo Aperto. A brief history of curating (Postmediabooks, Milan).
Ravi Agarwal is an artist, environmental activist, writer and curator. He is also founder of the Indian environmental NGO, Toxics Link.
We would be grateful if you could featu re the event in your next publication. A mention in the “events” section would also be very helpful in letting interested people know about the event.

For any clarification/ doubt, please do not hesitate to write back to us. 

Free entry. Parking outside the Cultural Centre will be available.

Best regards,
Kashish SETHI
Public relations and Social Media Coordinator,
Italian Embassy Cultural Centre
50-E, Chandragupta Marg (Entry from Nyaya Marg), Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110021

Haryana Hammers prevail over UP Dangal 5-2 on Day 3

Haryana Hammers prevail over UP Dangal 5-2 on Day 3 of Pro Wrestling League Season 2

New Delhi, January 4: Haryana Hammers continued their winning run as they prevailed over a power-packed UP Dangal side 5-2 on Day 3 of the Patanjali Powervita Pro Wrestling League Season 2 at the K D Jadhav Indoor Stadium here today.

Haryana won the toss and blocked the 74 kg Men’s category following which UP Captain Elitsa Yankova decided to block the 58 kg Women’s category, ruling out the bout between Haryana’s Marwa Amri and UP’s Geeta Phogat.

The first bout went to an impressive Haryana side as Magomed Kurbanaliev, the second most expensive men’s wrestler this season, registered an 8-0 scoreline against UP’s Amit Dhankar in the 70 kg Men’s Category. While Amit relied on a defensive game, his Russian opponent managed to effectively score points by virtue of experience and superior technique.

Up next was a closely fought battle between UP Captain and 2016 Olympic Bronze medalist Elitsa Yankova and Haryana grappler Indu Chaudhary. Both wrestlers went neck-to-neck to showcase their mettle on the mat. Although the scoreline was tied at 1-1 after two rounds, UP’s Elitsa won the 48 kg Women’s bout by virtue of Last Point Win.

Haryana Hammers wrestler Rajneesh stunned UP Dangal’s Andrey Kviatkovski in the third bout by registering a comprehensive 5-1 win. Rajneesh used attacking single leg holds to good effect, while keeping his defence strong, and giving no opportunity to the Ukrainian to make a comeback in the 65 kg Men’s category.

Star Indian wrestler and Olympian Yogeshwar Dutt, who missed out on participating in the 2017 edition of the Pro Wrestling League, supported the professional wrestling competition from the commentary box.

UP drew level in the fourth bout, as Belarus-born Maria Mamashuk overpowered Haryana’s Kiran to win the 75 kg Women’s contest 6-4. Although Kiran surprised Maria with her agility and aggression in the first round, the latter staged a remarkable comeback in the next round, scoring points in quick succession. The 2016 Olympics Silver medalist eventually prevailed in the duel, as Kiran went down fighting valiantly.

The 97 kg Men’s category was fought between UP’s Mausam Khatri and Haryana captain Abdusalam Gadisov, with the latter winning the fifth bout 8-0 comfortably.

UP, who had rested their hopes on Babita Kumari of the famous Phogat sisters, were in for a disappointment as Haryana’s Sofia Mattsson won the sixth bout in just 46 seconds, by virtue of a Win By Fall. The Swedish grappler gave Babita no chance to put up a fight in the 53 kg Women’s category as Haryana gained an unassailable 4-2 lead. “I am very happy with the way I won the fight today but ya I did not expect it to wrap up that quick,” added Sofia.

Haryana Hammers gave finishing touches to the game by finishing the final bout with yet another 8-0 win. Sandeep Tomar was too powerful for Amit Kumar Dahiya of UP Dangal as Haryana went on to win the tie 5-2.

Speaking on his remarkable victory over Andrey Kviatkovski, Haryana’s Rajneesh said: “I am very happy and contented with the way I performed today.”

Haryana captain Abdusalam Gadisov added: “All teams have amazing wrestlers but I feel proud to be leading such a strong contender in the league. With the kind of performances the team has been giving I am sure of taking back home the trophy of PWL.”

Sandeep Tomar also shared his thoughts after Haryana’s victory: “The fight was tough but I did not go with any pressure on the mat. All I had in my mind was to give my 100% and win the bout for my team.”

Haryana’s Indu Chaudhary also expressed her thoughts on being defeated by international wrestler Elitsa Yankova. “I got stuck at a moment and believe that was the game changer. I could not cover up after that. I realise my mistake and am sure of a comeback in my next game,” she said.

The proposed Second Diplomatic Enclave at Sector 24,Dwaraka,N Delhi

Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved the transfer of 34.87 Ha land in Sector 24, Dwarka, New Delhi from Delhi Development Authority to Land and Development Office (L&DO) for the purpose of the Second Diplomatic Enclave.
          Currently, there is one Diplomatic Enclave in Chanakyapuri, where land has been allotted to the Embassies by L&DO. MEA has expressed need for more land for allotment to Diplomatic Missions/ International Organizations for building their Chanceries/ Embassies in Delhi. For this DDA has earmarked 34.87 Ha land in Sector 24, Dwarka, which will be transferred to L&DO. This will provide land for Second Diplomatic Enclave in the capital.

Cabinet approves signing of MoU between India and Portugal in the field of agriculture

Cabinet approves signing of MoU between India and Portugal in the field of agriculture and allied sectors
The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modihas given its approval for signing of an Agreement for cooperation in the field of Agriculture and allied sectors between India and Portugal.

The Agreementcovers various activities in these fields which include exchange of scientific and technical information, trade in plants and plant products, exchange of information in phytosanitary issues, training programmes, seminars and visits of experts and consultants.

The Agreement provides constitution of a Joint Working Group comprising of representatives from both countries, the task of which would be to monitor the implementation of the present MoU and making concrete proposals for agriculture cooperation and develop guidelines and priorities for future cooperation in the field of agriculture and allied sectors.

The Agreement shall enter into force on the date of its signing and shall remain in force for a period of five years and shall be automatically extended for a subsequent period of five years unless either Party gives written notice through diplomatic channels to the other Party of its intention to terminate the Agreement at least six months before its expiration.

Three Groups of Secretaries present ideas on governance, science & technology, and energy & environment to PM

Three Groups of Secretaries to the Government of India, today presented ideas for transformative change in different areas of governance, to the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi.

Subjects such as citizen centric service delivery, digital inclusion, innovation, and simplification of laws, figured in the presentation on “Governance.”

The presentation on “Science and Technology,” focused on areas such as improved opportunity and access for learning; jobs and start-ups; and “ease of doing science.”

The presentation on “Energy and Environment” included suggestions related to various energy sources, and energy efficiency.

Union Ministers, and officials from the NITI Aayog were also present on the occasion.

A total of four presentations on various governance related themes have now been made in the current series, out of the total of nine scheduled to be made.

The Union Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley holds Pre-Budget consultations with the Finance Ministers of all States/ UTs

The Union Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley holds Pre-Budget consultations with the Finance Ministers of all States/ UTs (with legislature); FM: Various steps taken by the
Central Government in recent past to unearth black money will help in curbing corruption and making the Indian economy more cleaner, transparent and efficient; Asks the States to work together for putting India on the path of higher growth
The Union Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley said that various steps taken by the Central Government in recent past to unearth black money will help in curbing corruption and making the Indian economy more cleaner, transparent and efficient. He said that the world economy is passing through a difficult phase and is quite fragile. However the Finance Minister said that in case of Indian Economy, macro and micro indicators are quite strong and Indian economy is able to emerge as one of the fastest growing economies in the world. The Finance Minister stated that the multifarious reforms initiated by the Central Government in recent past would be taken forward in the coming months and urged the States to work together for putting India on the path of higher growth. The Finance Minister Shri Jaitley was making his Opening Remarks during his Pre-Budget consultations with the Finance Ministers of all the States and UTs (with legislature) here today. The meeting was attended among others by the Chief Minister of Puducherry, Dy. CMs of Gujarat and NCT of Delhi, Finance Ministers/ Ministers representing their respective States/UTs and Senior Officers from the States/UTs. From the Central Government, along with the Union Finance Minister, those attended today’s Meeting included Shri Santosh Gangwar, Minister of State for Finance, Shri Arjun Ram Meghwal, Minister of State for Finance & Corporate Affairs, Shri Ashok Lavasa, Finance Secretary, Shri Shaktikanta Das, Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs (DEA), Dr Hasmukh Adhia, Revenue Secretary, Ms Anjuli Chib Duggal, Secretary, Department of Financial Services (DFS), Dr Arvind Subramanian, Chief Economic Adviser (CEA) and other senior officers of the Ministry of Finance.
There after, various suggestions were made by the participating Chief Minister, Deputy Chief Ministers, and Finance Ministers of different States/UTs. Many of those suggestions were general in nature and most of them were State specific or policy oriented or both. Most of them gave their suggestions in writing as well to the Finance Minister. Common suggestions made during the meeting included more focus on relaxing FRBM limit in case of States for raising their borrowing capacity by raising it by 1% or at least by 0.5%, expansion of bank branches in most remote areas of the country, expressed need for giving fiscal stimulus, allocation of high outlay for National Rural Employment Generation Programmes, revival of National Rural Drinking Water Programme, launching of new scheme(s) for urban poor, allocation of more funds for agriculture, irrigation, unorganised, MSME and Service Sectors among others.
Other suggestions include setting-up of Inter-States Green Corridor for sharing of green energy among the States, early solution of oil royalty related issues, certainty about devolution of funds to States well in advance and changes therein if any, should be made with adequate notice so that States can plan accordingly and make effective use of funds, limit of NABARD Refinancing of Cooperative Bank loans to farmers be raised for affecting affordable credit to farmers, higher MSPs be declared for pulses and coarse cereals and timely release of funds for Centrally Sponsored Schemes such as Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan and, Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan, among others.
Other general suggestions included that in view of GST, merger of Railway Budget with General Budget, discontinuation of funds under plan and non-plan heads and demonetisation among others, the Budget as such needs to be reinvented. It was suggested that there is need to move from fiscal federalism to resource federalism
At the conclusion, the Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley assured the States/UTs that the suggestions made by them in the meeting and the written memorandum submitted by them would be duly examined and suitably considered as part of the Budget proposals for 2017-18. This would be in keeping in view with the spirit of federalism enshrined in the Constitution.

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