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Don’t take action against Sena MLAs for now: SC

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The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Speaker of the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly, Rahul Narwekar not to take any action on the new disqualification notices issued against the members of Shiv Sena.

A bench of Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, and Justices Krishna Murari and Hima Kohli asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Maharashtra Governor, to inform its direction to the newly-appointed Assembly Speaker. The order of the bench came after senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Uddhav Thackeray camp, mentioned the matter for urgent listing of the pleas saying the matters were posted for today but were not listed today.

“The disqualification plea is listed tomorrow before the Speaker. Let there be no disqualification until the matter is decided,” Sibal told the bench. Hearing this, the CJI asked Solicitor General to inform the Assembly Speaker not to take any decision until the pleas are decided by the apex court.

“Please inform the Assembly Speaker not to take any decision until the plea is decided. Please inform the speaker through your office,” the CJI told Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who agreed to convey the message to the Speaker.

The bench said the matter will require the constitution of the bench and it will take some time to be listed. It also clarified that the matter will not be listed tomorrow as well.

During the summer vacation, the bench had listed a number of petitions on the Maharashtra political crisis on July 11. There are various petitions pending before the apex court filed by both the factions of Shiv Sena.

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Nepal, India discuss bilateral interests

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Nepal and India discussed matters pertaining to bilateral and mutual interests during the Foreign Secretary-level talks in New Delhi.

At the invitation of his Indian counterpart Vinay Mohan Kwatra, Nepal’s Foreign Secretary Bharat Raj Poudyal arrived in New Delhi and held the bilateral talks at Hyderabad House on Tuesday where two sides discussed a wide range of issues and issues related to mutual interest and concerns, according to statements issued by New Delhi and Kathmandu.

The Foreign Secretaries discussed multiple areas of cooperation between Nepal and India covering trade, transit, connectivity, infrastructure, power sector, irrigation and inundation, agriculture, investment, development cooperation, health sector cooperation, culture, and people to people relations, among others, a statement issued by the Nepali Embassy in New Delhi said.

“They reviewed the progress on the discussions held during the high-level visits of the Prime Minister of Nepal Sher Bahadur Deuba to India on April 1-3 and of Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi to Lumbini, Nepal on May 16. The two Foreign Secretaries discussed the ways and means to build on momentum generated by those visits. They also discussed cooperation on multilateral forums,” the statement added.

Kwatra and Poudyal also expressed satisfaction at the progress made in different areas including power sector, construction of transmission line, railway etc.

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India, Israel team up to combat terrorism

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Israeli Ambassador to India Naor Gilon on Wednesday said that the two countries are working together to combat terrorism.

Speaking to ANI exclusively, Gilon said, “I will reaffirm that India and Israel are suffering a lot from terrorism and are also cooperating together whenever we can, to combat terrorism.” He also stressed on the importance of regional groupings, especially of I2U2 bloc comprising India, Israel, UAE, and the US that held its first virtual summit in July 2022.

“I think, it’s a very important group together which brings close allies and likeminded countries – UAE, US, India and Israel which put the interests of people ahead. I think that such more groupings – regional groupings can be a very useful element to improve in both Asia and the world – by bringing new technologies, new cooperation, better economy and new values,” said the Israeli envoy.

I2U2 was initially formed in October 2021 following the Abraham Accords between Israel and the UAE, to deal with issues concerning maritime security, infrastructure and transport in the region.

At that time, it was called the ‘International Forum for Economic Cooperation.’ That was referred to as the ‘West Asian Quad’.

I2U2 initiative is a new grouping of India, Israel, the US and UAE. In the grouping’s name, ‘I2’ stands for India and Israel, whereas ‘U2’ stands for the US and the UAE. This is a great achievement which tells the geopolitical changes that happen in the region.

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8 of 11 MLAs join BJP, including ex-Goa CM

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8 of 11 MLAs join BJP, including ex-Goa CM

Ahead of joining the Bharatiya Janata Party on Wednesday, eight Congress MLAs, including former Goa CM Digambar Kamat and Leader of Opposition Michael Lobo met with Chief Minister Pramod Sawant at the Assembly Complex.

Barely two months after the Congress seemed to have staved off a defection bid, eight of its 11 MLAs led by top leaders Digambar Kamat and Michael Lobo joined the ruling BJP.

The eight MLAs who met with CM Sawant are Digambar Kamat, Michael Lobo, Delilah Lobo, Rajesh Phaldesai, Kedar Naik, Sankalp Amonkar, Aleixo Sequeira and Rudolf Fernandes. After holding a meeting with Congress Legislature Party, Lobo told ANI that they “will join BJP”, however no official confirmation from the Sawant has come forward yet.

The development came amid the Congress leader Rahul Gandhi-led Bharat Jodo Yatra, which is being held to combat the BJP-led Centre and awaken the country’s people to the dangers of economic inequalities, social polarisation, and political centralization. The Yatra includes Padayatras, rallies, and public meetings which will be attended by the senior Congress leaders including Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.

Days ago on September 4, Gujarat Youth Congress President Vishwanathsinh Vaghela resigned from his post which is considered to be a major jolt for the party. On September 2, party leader Rajinder Prasad, who is also the son of late Master Beli Ram Sharma from Nowshera, Rajouri, resigned from all posts and the primary membership of the party. Prasad blamed the ‘coterie’ system for being a reason for the ‘demise’ of the party. In recent months, Rajinder Prasad and several high-profile leaders have quit Congress. The exit of veteran leader Ghulam Nabi Azad from the Congress, months before the upcoming Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh Assembly polls, as well as the general elections in two years’ time, dealt a huge blow to party.

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PAK NAVY SNUBS CHINA OVER CHOPPER UPKEEP

The naval force was compelled to accept weapon systems sold by China, all in the name of ‘all-season’ friendship

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Pakistan purchased the Chinese Z-9EC helicopters in 2006, an ASW variant specifically produced for the Pakistan Navy and Air Force, however it is marred by poor maintenance capabilities of the Chinese supplier.

Pakistan purchased these helicopters equipped with pulse compression radar, low-frequency sonar, radar warning receiver and doppler navigation system to counterbalance India, however, it has little chance of doing harm to New Delhi, reported Difesa Online, an independent newspaper specialized in the defence sector and related industry. The problem would mainly concern the poor maintenance capabilities of the Chinese supplier (the helicopters were produced by the Harbin Aircraft Industry), as they would not be able to repair damaged helicopters, thus compromising the operational capabilities of the anti-submarine aircraft.

It is certainly not the first time that Chinese weapons systems have been the subject of harsh criticism from Pakistani naval circles. In fact, many countries that militarily depend on low-cost supplies from Beijing complain of major deficiencies, especially from the point of view of maintenance, reported the Italian publication.

The ASW Z-9EC helicopters are embarked, as previously mentioned, on the Zulfiqar class frigates (photo), the latter designed and built jointly in the Hudong-Zhonghua shipyards in China and KS&EW Ltd in Pakistan. These naval units carry out missions such as air defence, ban on enemy shipping and patrolling the EEZs. In 2009, the then Chief of Staff of the Pakistan Navy, Admiral Noman Bashir, claimed that Chinese technology was compatible with Western technology. But within a short time, the Pakistani Navy had to encounter serious problems with the helicopters, reported Difesa Online.

The most serious problem was the failure of the tail rotor blade, a defect that has a direct impact on the airworthiness of the machine. Indeed, without a functioning tail rotor blade, the helicopter tends to make a sudden, uncontrolled swing which could, if not corrected, create a dangerous situation for the crew.

The occurrence of such a problem on a combat mission could lead to serious consequences.

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Govt schemes prospered the lives of people in J-K

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Govt schemes prospered the lives of people in J-K

Centrally sponsored schemes envisaged benefiting common people are helping the residents of Jammu and Kashmir live a life which they yearned for 70-long years. The administration has been making intense efforts to create awareness about how the schemes devised by the Centre can benefit the common man in the Union Territory.

Camps are being organized to register the beneficiaries so that they get the benefits that stand reserved for them. Recently the divisional administration in Kashmir organized a mega registration camp for beneficiaries in Srinagar. The purpose of the event was to create awareness and extend the benefits of the Centrally sponsored schemes to the general public.

According to the officials, over 600 beneficiaries under 133 schemes were extended benefits while hundreds of people were made aware of the various profitable schemes and assistance during the camp.

Meanwhile, officials of various departments, including Urban Local Bodies, Rural Development Department, Horticulture, Agriculture, Fisheries, Animal Husbandry, Sheep Husbandry, Rural Sanitation, Housing Board, Social Welfare, School Education, Rural Sanitation etc., took part in the campaign and informed the participants about facilities, subsidies and assistance provided to the eligible under various schemes which include machinery, capital, finances, etc.

Holding registration camps to create awareness about the schemes that could benefit the common man is an entirely new concept which has evolved in the Himalayan region after August 5, 2019–when the Centre announced its decision to abrogate J-K’s special status and bifurcated it into two Union Territories.

Till 2019, people had to run from one office to another to even get information about the Centrally sponsored schemes, availing of benefits was a Herculean task. But now things have changed. Instead of people running from pillar to post the administration is itself reaching out to them with the schemes and is ensuring that the benefits trickle down to the deserving.

More and more people are being covered:

The optimal implementation of Centrally sponsored schemes during the past three years has made the lives of people in J-K easy. The statistics reveal that more and more people are being covered under these schemes in the Himalayan region.

Under the Mid-day Meal Scheme programme of the Government of India designed to provide a nutritious diet to school children, over 8.30 lakh children in J-K have benefited from this scheme.

Similarly, under Samagra Shiksha Abhiyan, a pioneering programme in the education sector of the country, 1588 information communication technology labs, 1423 computer-aided labs, and 803 vocational labs have been established in the Union Territory besides uniforms and textbooks worth Rs 67 crore have been provided to 7.8 lakh children.

Nearly 8.96 lakh beneficiaries were covered under Poshan Abhiyan, an overarching umbrella scheme to improve the nutritional outcomes for children, pregnant women and lactating mothers to prioritize the efforts of all stakeholders on a comprehensive package of intervention and services targeted on the first 1,000 days of a child’s life.

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Lord Ram gets 14 Jan 22 date

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Lord Ram gets 14 Jan 22 date

The idol of Lord Ram will be placed at the sanctum sanctorum in the Grand Ram temple in Ayodhya around January 14, 2024, said Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust general secretary, Champat Rai, on Monday.

He said that the ground floor of the grand temple that is presently under construction will be ready by the end of next year, i.e. December 2023. “Ram Mandir Construction Committee’s meeting has concluded. The ground floor of the temple (Ram Mandir) will be ready by December 2023 and after 15 days i.e around 14 January 2024, idol of Lord Ram will be installed in the temple,” said Rai.

Earlier, the Ram Mandir Trust meeting was held at the Circuit House of Ayodhya, in which discussions were held on mainly three topics. The construction cost of the temple was one of them, which after an 18-month deliberation has been estimated at Rs 1,800 crore. The cost was revised in the past which had earlier come out to be Rs 400 crore.

“Meeting of Shri Ram Janamabhoomi trust was held. We discussed construction expenses of the Ram temple and it was estimated to be Rs 1,800 crore which could be changed later,” Rai added.

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