Monday, February 28, 2011

BASIC commits to negotiate for equity in Durban

The crucial meeting of the Environment Ministers from Brazil, South Africa, India and China or BASIC was held on Sunday in New Delhi,the participants assessed the post Cancun climate change policies apart from working out strategies for the next climate summit to be held in Durban in December.Other concerns like global goal and equitable access to sustainable development were also taken up.

Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh after the meeting said that the issue of equity, IPR and trade are important for basic quartet and with the help of G-77 support they bring these issues and other Bali roadmap issues back into the mainstream negotiations.Jairam Ramesh said that the two issues that has remained critical in the way beyond Kyoto in Climate talks are the second commitment period of Kyoto Protocal and the fast smart financing.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur arrested in Sunil Joshi murder case

Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, a key accused in 2008 Malegaon blast case, has been placed under arrest by Madhya Pradesh Police in connection with the murder of Sunil Joshi, a suspect in the Samjhauta Express blast case who was killed at Dewas in December 2007."The MP police moved an application in the special MCOCA court here, and after taking the court's permission they placed Sadhvi under arrest in the Sunil Joshi murder case," Rohini Salian, Special Public Prosecutor, told media.
Pragya Singh, main accused in 2008 Malegaon blast case in Maharashtra, has been undergoing treatment in J J hospital in Mumbai. The team of MP police went there Friday and arrested her."It is just a formal arrest. She would be taken to MP after they make transportation arrangements," Pragya's lawyer advocate Ganesh Sovani
Sadhvi Pragya arrested in Sunil Joshi murder case
Mumbai, Feb 26 (PTI)
Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, a key accused in 2008 Malegaon blast case, has been placed under arrest by Madhya Pradesh Police in connection with the murder of Sunil Joshi, a suspect in the Samjhauta Express blast case who was killed at Dewas in December 2007."The MP police moved an application in the special MCOCA court here, and after taking the court's permission they placed Sadhvi under arrest in the Sunil Joshi murder case," Rohini Salian, Special Public Prosecutor, told PTI.
Pragya Singh, main accused in 2008 Malegaon blast case in Maharashtra, has been undergoing treatment in J J hospital here. The team of MP police went there yesterday and arrested her, sources said.
"It is just a formal arrest. She would be taken to MP after they make transportation arrangements," Pragya's lawyer advocate Ganesh Sovani told.
Joshi, a suspect in the Samjhauta Express blast case, was shot dead in Dewas in Madhya Pradesh on 29th December 2007.Pragya, an alleged member of right-wing Hindu group Abhinav Bharat, has already moved the Supreme Court challenging her prosecution under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) in the Malegaon blast case.

Six people were killed and many were wounded in the bomb blast in the communally sensitive town of Malegaon, in Nashik district, on September 29, 2008.Maharashtra Anti Terrorism Squad has so far arrested 12 persons in Malegaon case.
Sixty-eight people were killed when bombs went off in two coaches of Samjhauta Express, running between Delhi and Lahore, around midnight on 18th February, 2007 at Diwana near Panipat, 80 km north of Delhi.Joshi, a suspect in the Samjhauta Express blast case, was shot dead in Dewas in Madhya Pradesh on 29th December 2007.Sixty-eight people were killed when bombs went off in two coaches of Samjhauta Express, running between Delhi and Lahore, around midnight on 18th February, 2007 at Diwana near Panipat, 80 km north of Delhi.

Lokpal Bill examining anti-corruption mechanism

Lokpal Bill examining anti-corruption mechanism and Anna Hazare Sends an Ultimatum to PM for for growing menace of corruption in high places scams unfolding every week needs to be counter checked with right bill proper enactment of law and policy with-its adequate application and in this context address the Media Demanding enactment of a strong anti-corruption law on the lines of Jan Lokpal Bill, Anna Hazare has given an ultimatum to the Prime Minister If the Prime Minister does not act decisively by the end of March, will
undertake an indefinite fast from 5th April at Jantar Mantar.

n a letter written to the Prime Minister, Anna Hazare has trashed the Group of Ministers and Committee of Secretaries set up by the government. “How could the officials and politicians draft an anti-corruption law against themselves?” questioned Anna addressing a press conference today. At least half of the members of the committee meant to draft the law should be from civil society. “Include eminent lawyers, retired judges, journalists. Use the services of those who have drafted the Jan Lokpal Bill.”


Many people including Anna Hazare, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Swami Ramdev, Kiran Bedi, Arch Bishop Vincent M Concessao, Mufti Shamoon Qasmi, Arvind Kejriwal, Swami Agnivesh, Sunita Godara, Devinder Sharma, Kamal Jaswal of Common Cause, Pradeep Gupta representing PAN IIT etc, had written a letter to the Prime Minister on 1st December requesting that Jan Lokpal Bill be enacted. Jan Lokpal Bill, drafted by Prashant Bhushan, Justice Santosh Hegde and Arvind Kejriwal and supported by Lyngdoh, Shanti Bhushan, Kiran Bedi and many others prescribes swift, certain and harsh punishment for the corrupt. However, the PM has not even acknowledged the letter.All these people have come together as “India Against Corruption (IAC).” IAC had organized massive rallies demanding enactment of Jan Lokpal Bill on 30th January in 62 cities across the country. In Delhi alone, there were more than 25,000 people.PTI Reports A committee set up by the government to give more teeth to the Lokpal Bill is examining the anti-corruption mechanism under which even the prime minister will be open to scrutiny.The Committee of Secretaries on Lokpal Bill, headed by the Cabinet Secretary, met here recently to consider suggestions to provide more teeth to the proposed legislation.Sources in the government said the meeting considered suggestions by private individuals and NGOs to make the mechanism more effective.

One of the criticism is that the Lokpal will not have any power to either initiate action suo motu in any case or even receive complaints of corruption from general public.The public will make complaints to the Speaker of Lok Sabha or Chairperson of Rajya Sabha. Only those complaints forwarded by Speaker of Lok Sabha or Chairperson of Rajya Sabha to Lokpal would be investigated by Lokpal.This, some feel, will severely restrict the functioning of the Lokpal.

Some NGOs have also objected to the restriction of the three-member panel of Lokpal to retired judges and they want eminent people from other walks of life to be part of the Lokpal panel.The government is keen on giving a "final shape" to the Bill in the coming days.

A Group of Ministers headed by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee formed recently to suggest means to tackle corruption plans to come out with concrete suggestions on the Bill by the Budget Session beginning tomorrow so that the proposed legislation can be discussed with opposition parties to evolve a consensus.Other members of the Committee of Secretaries include, the Home Secretary, Secretary, DoPT, the Law Secretary and Secretary Legislative Affairs - who is responsible for vetting Bills before they are sent for Cabinet''s approval.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Anna Hazare: To sit on Indefinite Fast 5th April 2011

“Mobile content Summit 2011″

The “Mobile content Summit 2011″ organized by Virtual Insight today 25 Feb at Shangrila hotel New Delhi well attended by professional and media discussed the various aspects of mobile culture evolute with pace of technology:
Topic of the Summit included the size of the Indian mobile content and services market? What are the key applications and content that Indian users are willing to pay for? Thirdly What is ‘recyclable’ content? and How can they re-generate and increase ARPU? What is the major role of mobile operators in delivering mobile content? What is the major missed opportunity of the mobile operators to date?
finally grabbing the 3G opportunity regulation, network deployment, business models
Those who ade contribution on the above subjects included
NK Goyal, President, CMAI (Communication & Manufacturing Association of India)
Suresh Jayaraju, Vice President, Head – New Age VAS, 3G Services, Reliance
Zubin Jimmy Dubash, Vice President VAS, Tata Teleservices
Chandan Ghosh, Head – Global Wholesale & Carrier Business (Voice & Data), Aircel
Sunzay Passari, Vice President – VAS & Devices, Essar Teleholdings & BPL Mobile Communications
TV Ramachandran, Resident Director, Regulatory Affairs & Govt. Relations, Vodafone
Ravi Gandhi, Vice President Corporate Regulatory, Airtel
Rajat Mukarji, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer, Idea Cellular
Vamshi Reddy, CEO & Founder, Apalya Technologies
R.N.Prabhakar, Former Member, TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India)
Joy Bhattacharya, Team Director, Kolkatta Knight Riders
Anuraj Gambhir, Chief Dreamer, Xpert Media Technology
S.N. Zindal, Chief Research & Development Officer, BITS Pilani (Former Director General, ACTO
Ketu Curan CEO gave vivid description about the mobile historical perceptive its technology pursuits in time to come the utility of the mobile phone is not only features of phone but more of smart pocket gadgets for our every day need: He said the mobile is dead to Smart phone is resurrected now Smart Remote- Its features are instants screen convienient easy everywhere for global connect:

Mobile Content Summit 2011-Sagar Media Inc

Friday, February 25, 2011

Highlights of Rail Budget 2011-12

Highlights of Rail Budget 2011-12
· No hike in passenger fare and freight rates
· Highest ever Plan outlay of Rs 57,630 crore proposed for Railways
· Rs. 9,583 crore provided for new lines
· 1300 km new lines, 867 km doubling of lines and 1017 km gauge conversion targeted in 2011-12
· 56 new Express Trains, 3 new Shatabdis and 9 Duronto trains to be introduced
· AC Double Decker services on Jaipur-Delhi and Ahmedabad-Mumbai routes
· New Super AC Class to be introduced
· A new portal for e-ticketing to be launched shortly
· Booking charges will be cheaper with a charge of only Rs 10 for AC classes and Rs 5 for others
· Pan-India multi-purpose smart card 'Go India' to be introduced
· 236 more stations to be upgraded as Adarsh Stations
· 47 additional suburban services in Mumbai and 50 new suburban services proposed for Kolkata
· Two new passenger terminals in Kerala and one each in Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal proposed
· Feasibility study to raise speed of passenger trains to 160-200 kmph to be undertaken
· A special package of two new trains and two projects for the states managing trouble free run of trains throughout the year
· Anti Collision Devise (ACD) sanctioned to cover 8 zonal railways
· GPS Based 'Fog Safe' Device to be deployed
· All unmanned level crossing up to 3000 to be eliminated
· All India Security Help line on a single number set up
· All state capitals in the North-East except Sikkim to be connected by Rail in next seven years
· A Bridge Factory in J & K and a state-of-art Institute for Tunnel and Bridge Engineering is proposed at Jammu
· A Diesel Locomotive Centre will be set-up in Manipur
· A Centre of Excellence in Software at Darjeeling proposed under the aegis of CRIS
· Rail Industrial Parks at Jellingham and New Bongaigaon proposed
· Additional mechanised laundry units to be set up at Nagpur, Chandigarh and Bhopal
· 700 MW gas-based power plant to be set up at Thakurli in Maharashtra
· 18,000 Wagons to be procured during 2011-12
· A scheme for socially desirable projects, 'Pradhan Mantri Rail Vikas Yojana' with non-lapsable fund proposed
· 10,000 shelter units proposed for track side dwellers in Mumbai, Sealdah, Siliguri, Tiruchirapalli on pilot basis
· Concession to physically handicapped persons to be extended on Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains
· Concession of 50 per cent to press correspondents with family increased to twice a year
· Senior Citizens concession to be hiked from 30 per cent to 40 per cent
· Medical facilities extended to dependent parents of the Railway employees
· Scholarship for girl child of Group-D railway employees increased to Rs 1200 per month
· 20 additional hostels for children of railway employees to be set up
· Recruitment for 1.75 lakh vacancies of Group 'C' and 'D' including to fill up backlog of SC/ST initiated, 16,000 ex-servicemen to be inducted by March 2011
· A separate sports cadre to be created
· 2011-12 declared 'Year of Green Energy' for Railways
· Freight loading of 993 MT and passenger growth of 6.4 per cent estimated for 2011-12
· Gross Traffic Receipts at Rs 1,06,239 crore, exceeding one lakh crore mark for the first time estimated
· Ordinary Working Expenses assessed at Rs 73,650 crore

Opposition blames Govt for corruption

Opposition kept up their attack on the government blaming it for corruption and failure in containing Maoist violence.During the resumed debate in Rajya Sabha on the Motion of Thanks on President's Address, members of BJP and the Left were one in attacking government on the issue of Telangana, corruption and price rise.
Gyan Prakash Pilania, BJP said the UPA government had failed on all fronts especially on parameters like extremism, price rise and corruption."Crisis of credibility plagues the nation," he said.

Brajesh Pathak (BSP) sought clearance of an airport project in Jewar near Greater Noida.He said the project has not been cleared despite the state government sending the proposal completing all the formalities.Supporting the demand for a separate Telangana state, Pathak said his party is in favour of smaller states.Uttar Pradesh should also be divided into smaller states and BSP has written to the Centre about the same, he said.
Barun Mukherjee (AIFB) charged Railway Minister and Trinamool Congress Chief Mamata Banerjee with being in alliance with the Maoists in West Bengal.He said the Congress was not only keeping quiet but was also in electoral alliance with Trinamool Congress for the upcoming Assembly elections in West Bengal.Mukherjee said that Banerjee was making announcements about expansion of Railways in West Bengal with an eye on the state polls.

Prabha Thakur (Cong) praised the Prime Minister for taking action in corruption cases. She said the Prime Minister had himself spoken to DMK supremo M Karunanidhi on A Raja, former Telecom Minister.Ram Kripal Yadav (RJD) held both the UPA and BJP responsible for misgovernance which fuelled corruption and anarchy in the country.

His remark that both were two facets of the same coin, drew protests from the Opposition benches. Yadav said two lakh farmers had been driven to suicide in the last two years.Raashid Alvi (Cong) said NDA which was raising much hue and cry over how the Prime Minister inducted a cabinet colleague like Raja, has perhaps forgotten how it had allotted defence portfolio to George Fernandes.

"It is the prerogative of the PM to induct anybody in his Cabinet," was the reply by NDA then, Alvi said, adding in the present case charges were blown out of proportion despite the government yielding to Opposition demand for setting up a JPC.

Janardhan Waghmare (NCP) said the government has already announced constituting JPC over 2G spectrum allocation.B Jayashree (Nom) in her maiden speech demanded setting up a National Academy for Children and stressed the need for elementary education through regional languages.Academies to promote art and culture should be set up on the pattern of IITs/IIMs to revive rich Indian culture and tradition, she said.

Telecom policy faulty: PM

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today defened the telecom policy in place but admitted that implementation may be faulty.Citing statistics of teledensity which has gone up from seven per cent in March 2004 to 66 per cent in December, 2010, Singh said the policy has paid "rich dividends".

Asserting that auction for 2G spectrum was not considered in 2007 as the concerned ministry had opposed it and was supported by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), he said, "I felt that for level playing field, it was entirely appropriate that we should continue on the path which we had followed until 2007.Reports PTI

Acrex India 2011-Trade Fair-Sagar Media Inc

Power Finance Corporation:Public Issue Infra Bonds:24 Feb-22 March 2011

Tax saving PFC-Public Issue infra bonds

Power Finance Corporation Public Issue bonds infrastructure bond, opens Feb 24 2011 offering a fixed rate of interest of up to 8.5% payable annually or on a cumulative basis:Power Finance Corporation has come out through tax-free infrastructure bonds in the current financial year it plans to raise up to Rs. 5,600 crore . The bonds have a face value of Rs 5,000 with 10 years and 15 years maturity. There is a lock-in period of 5 years from the date of allotment and the public issue of tax-free
infrastructure bonds is secured, redeemable, non-convertible debentures of Rs. 5,000 face value each will open for subscription on February 24 and close on March 22.
State-run Power Finance Corporation (PFC) today said it has appointed four merchant bankers-- Goldman Sachs, JM Financial, DSP Merill Lynch and ICICI Securities-- to manage the Rs 5,600 crore follow-on public offer."Goldman Sachs, JM Financial, DSP Merill Lynch and ICICI Securities have been chosen to handle PFC's follow on public offer (FPO)," PFC Chairman and Managing Director Satnam Singh told reporters here.
Earlier this month, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs had approved the FPO of PFC.The company will also infuse 15 per cent fresh equity by issuing 17,21,65,005 shares of Rs 10. The offer would comprise 5 per cent disinvestment of the government's share in PFC through putting 5,73,88,335 crore shares of Rs 10 on sale.At the current market price, the issue is likely to fetch Rs 5,656 crore.reports PTI

Thursday, February 24, 2011

UNSC demands immediate end to violence in Libya

UNSC demandsan immediate end to violence in Libya that has killed "hundreds of civilians," India and 14 other members of the UN Security Council have asked the regime of Moammar Gaddafi to address the legitimate demands of the people protesting against his 41-year rule.

The Security Council "condemned the violence and use of force against civilians, deplored the repression against peaceful demonstrators and expressed deep regret at the deaths of hundreds of civilians", following a closed-door meeting of the powerful body on Tuesday night.In a statement issued in response to a violent crackdown against pro-democracy protesters in Libya, the 15 members of the Council "called for an immediate end to the violence and for steps to address the legitimate demands of the population, including through national dialogue." The Security Council "strongly urged the Libyan authorities to ensure the safe passage of humanitarian and medical supplies and humanitarian workers into the country." The closed-door meeting of the Council was briefed by B Lynn Pascoe, UN Under-Secretary General for Political Affairs; and Libya's envoy to the UN, Mohammed Shalgam.

Rosemary DiCarlo, US deputy envoy to the UN, said separately that "the international community has said in one clear and unified voice that it condemns the violence against civilians in Libya, that the violence must cease immediately."
The world body also welcomed the statement issued by the Arab League, which barred Libya from its meetings until it stopped attacking its own people.Navi Pillay, UN human rights chief, blasted the crackdown by the forces loyal to 68-year-old Gaddafi against the protesters and called for an independent investigation into crimes that may have been committed."The international community must unite in condemnation of such acts and make unequivocal commitments to ensure justice is rendered to the thousands of victims of this repression," she said.Following the overthrow of regimes in Tunisia and Egypt, large-scale protests have erupted in several countries in the region including Libya, Bahrain and Yemen. Libya, however, has responded with an extreme show of force.International censure against Gaddafi escalated after reports that the regime was firing at the protesters from war planes. UN chief Ban Ki-moon described this as "outrageous."

In a letter to the Council, the country's deputy ambassador to the UN, Ibrahim Dabbashi, who has demanded Gaddafi's resignation, called for establishment of a non-fly zone over Libya and a humanitarian corridor.During the closed-door meeting of the Council, India called for protection of foreigners and facilitating their safe departure, an official source said.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Debate on Indian's Black Money:Lawyer Prashant Bhushan

Corruption, black money inflation debate in Parliament

Corruption, black money and inflation dominated the debate on the motion of thanks to the President's address to the joint sitting of Parliament. While the ruling Congress hailed the steps taken by the government to deal with corruption, the main opposition BJP launched a scathing attack doubting its intention in tackling the menace.

Initiating the debate in Lok Sabha Mr P.C. Chacko of the Congress said the Prime Minister's announcement on setting up of a JPC showed his sincerity and commitment in dealing with the controversial 2G Scam. Participating in the debate Manish Tiwari of Congress questioned BJP on what it had had done in Karnataka as also when it was in power at the Centre.

SP Leader Mulayam Singh Yadav criticized the government for not taking effective steps in dealing with burning issues being faced by the common man. Members of some other parties while participating in the debate spoke on expected lines.

In the Rajya Sabha , Janardhan Dwivedi of the Congress, said that government is according top priority to getting rid of corruption and the President's address had dealt with it extensively. In the Rajya Sabha, Jayanthi Natarajan of Congress said that the government had taken prompt actions in wake of the 2G spectrum scam.

Maitreyan of AIADMK alleged the UPA government has failed to control rising inflation .He also demanded strengthening India's naval presence off Tamil Nadu coast in the wake of killing of fishermen by Sri Lankan forces.

Launching a frontal attack, Mr Rajnath Singh of the BJP charged the government with adopting delaying tactics in handling corruption. Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Mr Arun Jaitley criticised the UPA government saying that it lacked competence in governance. Mohan Singh of SP, Ashok S Ganguly nominated and some other members participated in the debate which will continue in both houses on Wednesday.

Evacuation of Indian nationals from Libya

Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao has said that arrangements are being made for air and sea evacuation of Indian nationals stranded in the country. She was speaking to newsmen after an emergency high level meeting on modalities to evacuate 18,000 Indian nationals trapped in Libya.Earlier, a report from Tamil Nadu said that a 42 year old contract worker employed with a Korean group has been killed and another seriously injured in gunfire during the anti-government violence in that country. The report further says, the fate of 22 others from the state is still not known.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Press Conference-International Flair at ACREX India 2011

International Flair at ACREX India 2011

Nksagar-Sagar Media Inc -New Delhi -India:
The 12 the edition of ACREX India South Asia largest exhibition of and Conference catering to the Air Conditioning, Refrigeration, Ventilation and Building Services' Industries.ACREX India 2011 over 400 International exhibitors fro 20 countries will showcase their products 24-26 February2011 at Pragati maiden New Delhi with a promise to surpass all previous expectations and to offer a perfect stage for industry get-together with a focus on future trends. Exhibition is organized by Indian Society of Heating, Refrigerating & Air Conditioning Engineers (ISHRAE) and supported by large number of professional societies from India and abroad. ACREX INDIA will provide an ideal platform for exchange of ideas among professionals and opportunity to highlight latest products, trends & innovations in the industry.Acrex partners:

Concurrent to the exhibition ten half day technical workshops will be held on greener trends and topics like the design of extremely efficient and robust buildings and structures in health care sectors the use of geothermal energy HVAC technologies and smoke management in large buildings chilled beam

Indo-German Chamber of Commerce with over 6700 members is the largest bi-national chamber. Having a strong local presence with head-office in Mumbai, branch offices in Delhi, Bangalore, Kolkata, Chennai and Pune and a liaison office in Düsseldorf (Germany) it is the primary contact for Indian and German companies and is thus playing a major role in enhancing the bilateral economic relations between India and Germany. As a highly regarded and respected institution, with more than 50 years of experience, its qualified team and above all its innumerable contacts and connections, the Indo-German Chamber of Commerce brings to ACREX its expertise in organising and supporting trade shows in India and Germany.

Sagar Media Inc

Invest in Taiwan - Minister Dr Christina Y Liu - Sagar Media Inc

BJP accepts JPC only for 2G

BJP official said it has agreed to the govt's proposal to have a JPC only on the 2G Spectrum allocation scam and would merely discuss the irregularities in the Commonwealth Games projects and Adarsh Housing society during the Budget session of Parliament."There will be a JPC on 2G issue. We will discuss other issues on the floor of the House," Deputy Leader of BJP in the Rajya Sabha S S Ahluwalia said when asked if BJP had given up its demand for a JPC on CWG and Adarsh Housing society.

In the Lok Sabha Business Advisory Committee (BAC) meeting, Deputy Leader of the BJP Gopinath Munde demanded that the JPC should be announced before the Question Hour begins on Tuesday.While the JPC is likely to be announced on Tuesday, a motion to form the parliamentary panel will be moved by Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal on 24th February, after the Motion of Thanks to the President for her address to the joint sitting of Parliament.

BJP has requested in BAC meetings of the respective Houses of Parliament that the Commonwealth Games scam, Adarsh Housing society, rations scam in the army, allocation of S-band to Devas Multimedia and Indian Black money stashed abroad should be discussed this week."We have demanded that discussions should also be held on price rise, increase in naxal activity, Chinese intrusions and functioning of the CBI," Ahluwalia said.

The main opposition also wants to raise the issues of harassment of fishermen by Sri Lankan navy, the recent Sabarimala stampede and the treatment meted out to BJP workers by the government during its Tiranga Yatra to Kashmir.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Facebook trigger Young Moroccans protest

Thousands people rallied in Moroccan cities Sunday demanding political reform and limits on the powers of the king, the latest protests demanding change to have rocked the region.Over 2,000 people took to the streets of the capital Rabat, 4,000 according to the organisers, shouting: "The people want change." In Casablanca, the North African nation's biggest city, over 1,000 people came out demanding: "Freedom, dignity, justice," media reported.The demonstrations were peaceful as of midday.

Morocco's King Mohammed VI would make a speech promising a clutch of reforms, the country's interior ministry announced Sunday, after thousands of demonstrators protested in 20 towns and cities across the country.

Thousands of young Moroccans protest triggers after joined the "February 20" movement on the social networking site Facebook, calling for peaceful demonstrations demanding a new constitution limiting the king's powers and more social justice.

The call has similar origins to the so-called "Facebook revolutions" that toppled decades-old regimes in Tunisia and Egypt and sparked deadly protests in Bahrain, Yemen, Algeria and Morocco.Ahead of the protest, Morocco promised to inject 1.4 billion euros in subsidies to soften price hikes for staples -- a key factor among others including rampant unemployment behind the spreading unrest in the Arab world.

That came despite an earlier reassurance that Morocco was unlikely to see Tunisia or Egypt-style unrest due to ongoing reforms by King Mohammed VI who has ruled the country for over a decade.Human rights and civil groups as well as independent journalists joined the movement, calling for the adoption of a democratic constitution.However on Saturday one of the protests' organisers, Rachid Antid, told media he was pulling out of Sunday's rally due to the inclusion of Islamist and far-left groups with which they share "ideological differences."


The youth wing of banned Islamist group Justice and Charity, believed to be Morocco's biggest opposition force called for a peaceful rally.Others, including the pro-regime Istiqlal and the Islamist opposition Justice and Development, openly rejected the demonstration.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

India, Malaysia ink FTA

India has signed a trade pact with Malaysia Anand Sharma inked a trade pact with Japan on Wednesday before flying in Kuala Lumpur Thursday night.Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) was signed by Commerce Minister Anand Sharma and his Malaysian counterpart Mustapa Mohamed in the presence of Prime Minister Najib Razak and several leading captains of industry from both sides.

"The CECA will usher in a new era of much deeper economic cooperation. Indian Premier Manmohan Singh is very supportive of this and a very good friend of Malaysia," Najib said standing behind the two seated ministers after the pact was inked.

India is Malaysia's 13th largest trading partner in 2010, with exports amounting to USD 6.5 billion and imports at USD 2.4 billion.Indian investments in Malaysia were valued at USD 15.9 million, mostly in scientific and measuring equipment, fabricated metal products, furniture and fixtures.This is the second trade pact India has signed in the past three days.The two countries envisage that with the CECA in place from 1st July, 2011, bilateral trade will accelerate and touch at least USD 15 billion by 2015.

"The agreement is an ambitious one encompassing services, investment and trade and opening up various sectors for investment opportunities," Sharma said at a press conference after inking the deal."The modest trade bilateral target of USD 15 billion by 2015 is doable and can happen sooner by the signing of CECA," Sharma said.He said Indian business houses have invested in the petroleum, synthetics, railways and IT sectors in Malaysia and the two countries were also working on projects in third countries.He stressed that Asia was today the hub of economic activity and noted that the integration of Asian economies would help in realizing developmental objectives.

The Malaysian trade minister said there were two factors which would push the CECA to greater heights viz are the direct impact of tariff reductions and the excitement and feel good factor between the two countries.The two ministers noted that signing of the deal would also facilitate the movement of skilled professionals.Malaysia has also agreed to higher FDI by Indian companies in the construction services and IT sectors.Mustapa said the negotiators had helped produce an agreement that had nine times more on the positive list than the negative list.Malaysian minister emphasized that India was a very important country for Malaysian businessmen, with trade between the two goings up to USD 9 billion this year.He said the impact of the CECA would extend beyond just trade and investment, projecting a huge increase in tourist arrivals.

The CECA is seen as adding value to the existing Asean-India FTA by subjecting more products to tariff concessions and advancing the timelines for reduction or elimination of tariffs.Officials said the agreement also contains more trade facilitation provisions that will enable exporters to comply with rules of origin requirements.The pact also has provisions that will allow joint ventures between Malaysia and Indian services companies in sectors like healthcare, telecommunications, retail and environmental services.

The agreement includes a dedicated chapter on Movement of Natural Persons, an area that has been negotiated by Malaysia for the first time ever, which will facilitate the temporary entry of installers and contractual service suppliers, independent professionals and business visitors from India into Malaysia and Malaysia into India.The CECA also contains provisions to encourage strategic partnerships and to enhance collaborative ventures in areas such as infrastructure development, human resources development, science and technology, creative industries and business facilitation.The decision to explore the feasibility of comprehensive economic cooperation between Malaysia and India was taken during a visit to India by former Malaysian Premier Abdullah Badawi in 2004.
Media agencies

Friday, February 18, 2011

Seven die in Libyan protests

Libyan city of Benghazi in clashes between security forces and anti-regime protesters, a medical official said, raising the day's toll by one."Seven protesters were killed in the demonstrations yesterday at Benghazi," the medical official who requested anonymity said, without giving further details.

Shortly after the newspaper Quryna, which is close to the son of Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi, reported the same death toll, citing a security official.Gunfire rang out in several parts of the city on the third straight day of protests against the long-time Libyan leader, Ramadan Briki, chief editor of the Quryna newspaper in Benghazi, said."It is the first time that we have heard shooting in the city," Briki said. "Given the difficulties, we are unable to know if there are fatalities or not."

Separately, lawyers demonstrated in front of a courthouse in Benghazi - Libya's second city after Tripoli - to demand a constitution for the country.

Chakravyuh Mahabharata Garwhal IGNCA : Sagar Media Inc

Thursday, February 17, 2011

India, Japan sign free trade pact

India and Japan on Wednesday signed a comprehensive market-opening pact to boost bilateral trade between the two countries, which currently amounts to USD 10.36 billion per annum."The agreement, which the two countries had negotiated since 2007, will eliminate tariffs on 94 per cent of two-way trade flows in 10 years after it comes into force," Japanese news agency Kyodo said.

This is the third Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement signed by India, the others being with Singapore and South Korea.The pact was signed between India's Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma and Japanese Foreign Affairs Minister Seiji Maehara.

Under the agreement, Japan will eliminate duties on 95 per cent of its industrial goods and other products and India will do the same on 85 per cent of its goods.
Citing examples, Kyodo said the 10 per cent tariff imposed by India on Japanese exports of lithium batteries, DVD players and tractors will be lowered to zero in 10 years, while the 3.6 per cent and 2.5 per cent duty levied by Japan on Indian curry and tea will be eliminated in the same period.

As per the CEPA text, the objective of the agreement is to "liberalise and facilitate trade in goods and services between the parties (India and Japan)".
The pact would also help in increasing investment opportunities and strengthen protection for investment and investment activities, besides ensuring protection of intellectual property.Other objectives of the CEPA include the promotion of cooperation for effective enforcement of competition laws, an improved business environment and a framework to enhance closer cooperation in the fields agreed in the agreement.Japan will have to get the CEPA rectified by its Parliament, sources said.

Indian officials said the pact is likely to be put into force by 1st April.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Sagar Media Inc:MinisterTourism Media Meet on Wellness Tourism

Press Conference:WORKERS MARCH TO PARLIAMENTOn February 23

2G scam: Wrong to say zero loss:AP Singh

CBI Director A P Singh on Tuesday contradicted the claim that the 2G spectrum allocation had caused "zero loss" to the national exchequer as he appeared before Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC).Singh was quizzed by the members of the Committee on various aspects of the 2G spectrum allocation which the CBI is investigating.

CBI chief says he would not be able to tell the exact loss caused by 2G spectrum allocation as his primary focus is criminal side, says its Chairman M M Joshi."As far as he (Singh) has seen the case, to say 'zero loss' is wrong," PAC chairman Murli Manohar Joshi told a press conference after the meeting.

A member of the Committee said the CBI chief was of the view that it would be "wrong to say that there was zero sum loss in allocation of 2 G spectrum on first-come-first-serve basis."The CBI, in its FIR in the 2G case, has said the losses could be to the tune of Rs 22,000 crore.

The CBI Director was asked about the methodology used by the agency to calculate the losses caused by the alleged irregularities in the 2G spectrum allocations.He said he would be unable to accurately quantify the loss to the exchequer as his focus was on unraveling the criminal aspect of the alleged scam. He told the members that he would get back to the PAC on the matter.

To questions on whether former Telecom Minister Arun Shourie would be called by the PAC, Joshi pointed out that the CBI has already asked him to appear before it on 21st February.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

G4 nations stress for UNSC reforms

India, Brazil, Germany and Japan, the G4 nations on Saturday said they would press for “urgent” reforms of the U.N. Security Council this year.External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna and the Foreign Ministers of three other nations met at the U.N. headquarters to step up their campaign even though there is no broad acceptance within the 192 U.N. members on how to reform the world body's supreme peace and security body.“Pressure is mounting here at the United Nations for the U.N. membership to finally face the challenge of addressing Security Council reform in a realistic manner, adjusting it to the current geopolitical realities,” said Brazil's Foreign Minister Antonio de Aguiar Patriota after the meeting.

“The Ministers agreed to press ahead with all necessary steps to achieve at the earliest an expansion in both the permanent and non-permanent membership categories of the Security Council,” a joint statement said.“Towards this goal, the G4 countries reaffirmed their readiness to reach out to other countries and to work in close cooperation with them in a spirit of flexibility,” it added.

Krishna's two-day visit is his first trip to the U.N. since India became a non-permanent member of the Security Council in 2011 after a gap of 19 years. Reform of the Council is on top of his agenda Speaking to journalists after the second meeting in the past six months, Krishna said the four countries decided to “press ahead for Security Council reform on an urgent basis.”“The Security Council needs to face the realities of the 21st century,” Germany's Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said.

The G4 Ministers also underlined the need for Africa to have a permanent seat on the Council.The Security Council reform process has been going on for almost two decades.
But several questions are yet to be resolved: how many new seats should be created, who gets these seats and when should the veto power kick in.Negotiations have shifted from the so-called “Open Ended Working Group” of the 1990s to text based negotiations, which are headed by Ambassador Zahir Tanin of Afghanistan.The latest text is a five-page document, which lists the various options of expanding the Council.Except Japan, the other G4 countries are now on the Council serving as non-permanent members and they are hoping to set the stage for becoming permanent members before their terms expire.The four Ministers also met General Assembly President Joseph Deiss to discuss Security Council reform.Deiss has spoken out strongly in favour of reform

VC-Univ Cambridge-Leszek Borysiewicz-Leveraging Agriculture Nutrition & ...

Friday, February 11, 2011

BIG Ishqiyan on Valentine’s Day:92.7 BIG FM Delhi

92.7 BIG FM Delhi presents BIG Ishqiyan on Valentine’s Day
92.7 BIG FM to make V-Day memorable for you and your partner by sending you out on a BIG Date at Ramada Plaza: FM radio initiative from Reliance Broadcast Network Limited (RBNL) has come up with some great excitement for its listeners to help them woo their loved ones in Ishytle. 92.7 BIG FM will engage and entertain its listeners with an innovative campaign called BIG Ishqiyan. All one needs to do is send his or her love stories which are or were like a typical Bollywood story, with the candy floss romance, twists, separations, and reunion to 92.7 BIG FM and 4 couples will be chosen as winners for their best Bollywood Ishtyle stories. And that’s not all. The 4 couples will also be rewarded with a BIG date.

The couple will be taken to Ramada Plaza in a luxury car where they will spend a lovely evening having drinks and dinner. If the love story is like a situation typically out of a Bollywood movie, then one can send their stories from 9th to 14th February 2011, and the best love story will be selected for a grand prize.

The radio station also has an excellent line up of activities guaranteeing the highest excitement levels to its listeners where they get to also celebrate Rose Day, Teddy Day & Propose Day. To celebrate Rose Day & Teddy Day, RJs of 92.7 BIG FM Delhi are going on-ground to give Roses to listeners and Teddy on Teddy Day respectively. The excitement doesn’t end here, as even on Propose Day, the RJs help the listeners to propose to their beloved through songs & messages.

Commenting on the Valentine’s Day promotions, Ms. Sudha Sadanand, Radio Operations Head, Delhi, says, “Through the BIG Ishqiyan campaign, we are giving our revered listeners an opportunity to celebrate the occasion of love in a grandeur manner. Our on-air and on-ground packaging has been innovatively put together to celebrate not only Valentine’s Day but also Rose Day, Teddy Day & Propose Day. The icing on cake will be the grand prize where 4 couples will be given the opportunity to go on a BIG date.”

Press Conference - ULFA talks Centre for Peace in Assam

ULFA leaders Peace talks with Centre,

Centre on Thursday held unconditional talks with the banned ULFA and said it was "confident" of finding a "just and honourable solution" to the over three decade-old insurgency problem in Assam.During the hour-long deliberations, it was decided that a seven-member group will be formed to discuss modalities of carrying forward the peace process.The group will have Joint Secretary (northeast) as its coordinator and comprise three ULFA members and two representatives each of the state and Central governments.The group will discuss about designated camps, surrender policy, deposit of arms and other nitty-gritty for maintaining peace in the state.

The pro-talk group is unlikely to interfere if government launches operations against those members indulging in violence.The eight-member ULFA delegation led by 'chairman' Arabinda Rajkhowa met Home Minister P Chidambaram before going into a full session with senior officials led by Home Secretary G K Pillai.
"As you are aware that they (ULFA) have offered unconditional talks with Government of India and Government of Assam to find out a honourable and just solution to the issues raised by them"."I welcome them. I assured them that the government of India and government of Assam will engage them in sincere and meaningful talks and I am confident that we will find a just and honourable solution," Chidambaram said.
"They called on me which is a courtesy call. These are very preliminary stages (of talks), you (media) should cooperate and they will feel confident which will help to find a solution through talks," he said.

This is the first time that such unconditional talks are being held in ULFA's 31-year-old history.The meeting was also attended by Assam Chief Secretary N K Das, Additional DGP Khagen Sharma, Assam Home Commissioner Jishnu Barua, Centre's interlocutor P C Haldar, Secretary (Internal Security) U K Bansal and IB chief N Sandhu.

Apart from Rajkhowa, 'vice-chairman' Pradip Gogoi, 'political advisor' Bhimakanta Buragohain, 'foreign secretary' Sasha Choudhury, 'finance secretary' Chitrabon Hazarika, 'cultural secretary' Pranati Deka, 'publicity secretary' Mithinga Daimary and 'deputy commander-in-chief' Raju Barua participated in the talks.
Later addressing a crowded press conference, Choudhury said ULFA was hopeful that the insurgency problem in Assam can be solved through an amendment in the Constitution and made it clear that it will not participate in the forthcoming polls.
"Through the talks, therefore, we proposed to evaluate various facets of the Constitution and to explore the viability of protection and enrichment of the sovereignty of the people of Assam in all its dimensions-political, social and cultural, within the flexibility as mentioned by the prime minister," Choudhury said.

During the press conference, 'vice-chairman' Gogoi and 'finance secretary' Hazarika were also present but only Choudhury took questions from journalists.Declaring that the agenda of the future talks with the government and ULFA's demands would be decided by the "people of Assam", he said it was necessary to amend the Constitution to fulfil the hopes and aspirations of the people.Asked what would be the role of ULFA in the coming Assam Assembly elections due in April-May, Choudhury said the group would not participate in the polls."Time and again we have been saying that we will have zero involvement in the polls," he said.However, he said, ULFA cannot mention anything what would be the role of its supporters in the elections.

On the possibility of declaring a ceasefire, Choudhury said the initiative has to come from the government."Anyway, we have not indulged in violence in last one year," he said.Asked about the opposition of 'commander-in-chief' Paresh Baruah to the dialogue process, he said it was a decision of the group's highest decision making body general council."Baruah is still our commander-in-chief," he said.
He said the ULFA is still a banned group and its members outlawed but they are trying to be a "good citizen" to bring a lasting solution to the "conflict".
On 5th February, the ULFA announced that it will sit for unconditional talks with the Centre "respecting the wishes of the people of Assam".It also apologised for the violent acts it committed.The ULFA delegation arrived in the national capital last evening.

Before leaving for Delhi, the leaders met Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and sought his cooperation to take forward the peace process with the Centre.The ULFA leaders released from jail recently decided to hold unconditional talks with the government but the faction led by the group's 'commander-in-chief' Barua is opposed to it.The ULFA delegation is also likely to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on 13th February after his return from Kerala.
Media agencies

Thursday, February 10, 2011

TRAI's prices for 2G spectrum Match CAG

In line with CAG's findings on the 2G spectrum scam, telecom regulator TRAI on Wednesday recommended a whopping over six-fold jump in 2G spectrum cost for operators, a move that may make mobile services costlier.

TRAI has recommended Rs 10,972.45 crore for the contracted 6.2 Mhz spectrum for pan-India licence as against Rs 1,658 crore being paid by the operators now.
While, each Mhz of additional spectrum held by operators should cost one-time Rs 4,571.87 crore (all India), however, it would vary from circle to circle and the operators would have to pay only for those where they hold extra spectrum.
Going by this, the government would have earned over Rs 65,834 crore from just six pan-India licences, besides additional revenues from dual licences issued to two service providers -Tatas and RCom and additional spectrum held by several operators.
Terming the new recommendations of TRAI as "disastrous" for a majority of the operators, Cellular Operators Association of India, a lobby for GSM service providers, has said that it is like "changing the goal posts in the middle of the game."
When contacted Rajan Mathews, Director General of COAI told the news agency, "...assumptions used by TRAI are open to question. They (TRAI) have used very sophisticated mathematical modelling. It may take couple of weeks for us to understand but on the face of it, these look very disastrous for the industry."

TRAI's prices for 2G spectrum is also in line with Comptroller and Auditor General's (CAG) estimates of up to Rs 1.76 lakh crore presumptive loss to the exchequer in 2008 for selling 2G licences bundled with start-up spectrum at Rs 1658 crore for pan-India operations.Asked whether the government would accept the recommendations of TRAI, Telecom Minister Kapil SIbal, who had criticised CAG for methodology used to arrive at presumptive loss of Rs 1.76 lakh crore, said, "I haven't gone through them. They came to me this morning. I have been in office all morning. I haven't gone through them. You know, there is a process to be followed".

"A committee would be set up to look through them and then we will have a round table, discuss it with all stakeholders. Then it goes to the telecom commission and then it comes back to me and then I take a decision," he told reporters.

TRAI has said that the prices should be implemented retrospectively from April 1, 2010.All recommendations are for spectrum in the 1800 Mhz band.Last year, TRAI had said that spectrum held in 900 Mhz band should be priced at 1.5 times of price of spectrum in 1800 Mhz.However, the new recommendations have not mentioned about this.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Film Maker Anwar Jamal Sagar Media Inc

PM’s Office on S Band Spectrum

Statement by Spokesperson of PM’s Office said This office has seen reports alleging loss of Government revenue in a contract entered into by ANTRIX and Devas Multimedia Pvt. Ltd. due to lease of space segment capacity which would use S Band Spectrum. The Comptroller and Auditor General’s office and the Department of Space have already issued statements stating the factual position on the matter. It is further clarified that no decision has been taken by the Government to allocate space segment using S-Band Spectrum to ANTRIX or Devas. Hence, the question of revenue loss does not arise and any such reports are without basis in fact.

CM Shiel Dikshit offer Prayer to Goddess Saraswati

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Press Conference:15th conference of Commonwealth Statisticians

Economy to grow by 8.6 pc in 2010-11

Indian economy would grow by 8.6 percent in this financial year, despite fragile global recovery since financial meltdown of 2008."All along I was maintaining, it should be around 8.5 per cent plus. 8.6 per cent is accepted," Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said adding, "Now the other issue is inflation, trade balance... these are to be addressed".Agriculture and allied activities are expected to grow at 5.4 percent in 2010-11 compared to just 0.4 percent in the previous financial year.
The 8.6 percent GDP growth prospects however could not cheer markets. The BSE benchmark sensex closed almost flat at 18037.19 on concerns of inflation and rising interest rates.The CSO's GDP growth projection is a shade higher than the forecasts of 8.5 percent made by the Reserve Bank of India and the Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee earlier.While services such as trade, hotel, transport and communications improved to 11 percent from 9.7 percent, the manufacturing remains static at 8.8 percent year on year.

Mining and quarrying is likely to grow by 6.2 percent, compared to 6.9 percent a year ago, while electricity, gas and water production will grow up by 5.1 percent, as against 6.4 percent in the previous fiscal.With over dependence on monsoon, the country's agricultural growth continues to fluctuate year-on-year depending on the weather gods.Mukherjee said the economic growth estimated was satisfactory in the wake of the rising inflation and trade imbalances.The overall inflation has remained above the comfort zone of 5-6 percent for over a year now.
In December, inflation shot up to 8.43 percent, from 7.48 percent in the previous month. Food inflation for the week ended 22nd January stood at 17.05 percent.
However, Chief Economic Adviser Kaushik Basu while admitting inflation was a concern, said it would not affect the growth story."And the target of 9 per cent economic expansion for the next financial year is well with in the reach," he added.

"The prospects for the world as a whole are looking better but still there are uncertain clouds. In that scenario growth of 8.6 per cent is absolutely remarkable. So the 9 percent which we are aiming for next year is now looking well within target," Basu said.Earlier, the GDP estimate for 2009-10 was revised upward to 8 percent from 7.4 percent.

Chief Statistician T C A Anant said had the GDP estimates been calculated on the 7.4 percent (before it was revised to 8 per cent resulting in higher base) "you would find out that the growth rate would have been over 9 percent for 2010-11.""There is a likely possibility that there would be further downward revision of the overall GDP for 2010-11," Samiran Chakrabarty, chief economist, Standard Chartered said.
Commenting on the growth estimates, Ficci secretary general Amit Mitra the numbers are "quite encouraging"."The concern is that manufacturing growth projections are same as the growth rate of last year, though there has been some improvement in services," he added. The estimates for manufacturing sector expansion at 8.8 percent this fiscal is same as that it was in 2009-10.

Abheek Barua, Chief Economist with HDFC Bank said the GDP estimates show there is a deceleration in the industry in the second half of the fiscal."This (deceleration) could intensify in the next fiscal year," he said.

The CSO data further said the net national income (NNI) at factor cost (2004-05) is likely to be Rs 42,69,994 crore during the current fiscal, as against the previous year's quick estimate of Rs 39,46,540 crore.In terms of growth rates, the national income is expected to rise by 8.2 percent during 2010-11 in comparison to the growth rate of 7.5 percent in the year ago period.The per capita income in real terms (at 2004-05 prices) during 2010-11 is likely to attain a level of Rs 36,003 as compared to the quick estimates for the previous year of Rs 33,731.The global financial crisis pulled down the growth of the Indian economy to 6.8 percent in the 2008-09 fiscal from over 9 percent in the preceding three years.
The advance GDP estimates are released before the end of a financial year to enable the government to formulate various estimates for inclusion in the Budget.

Annual Day - National Mission for Manuscripts

Monday, February 7, 2011

INDIA-US Aviation Cooperation Programme

Mr. Vayalar Ravi, Minister for Civil Aviation met Mr. Gary Locke, the US Commerce Secretary on 7th February 2011 and both sides acknowledged the excellent cooperation through the Memorandum of Agreement and India-US Aviation Cooperation Programme (ACP).

The ACP bilateral partnership which was launched in 2007, targets mutual interests in supporting modernisation requirements of India’s rapidly growing Aviation Sector. The United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) is the lead sponsor of the ACP and funds technical assistance programmes for the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and Airports Authority of India (AAI). Mr. Vayalar Ravi thanked Mr. Gary Locke for the projects already underway which have helped the Indian Civil Aviation Sector as a whole. Both sides exchanged views on how to further this cooperation.

Mr. Vayalar Ravi also informed that the Executive Agreement for the Bilateral Aviation Safety Agreement between the two sides may be signed very soon once it receives the internal approvals in India.

The two sides discussed the benefits of the ACP partnership in being able to identify and executive priority technical collaboration projects. The Indian side expressed that projects in the pipeline such as the grant agreement for the Inspector training programme or TMODT for the DGCA may be given priority.

Mr. Vayalar Ravi thanked Mr Gary Locke for committing to fund a technical assistance programme for the AAI for the installation and operational certification of a pilot Ground Based Augmentation System at Chennai International Airport which will help to improve the safety and efficiency of India’s air traffic management systems.

The two sides agreed to hold the 3rd India-US Aviation Summit sometime during 2011, in India, at a date mutually convenient.The two Ministers also presided over a business delegation in which business heads of various companies participated.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Launch of Website & Logo-National Knowledge Network

Logo and Website of National Knowledge Network Launched

Logo and Website of National Knowledge Network Launched is a significant step towards ushering a knowledge revolution in the country and poses a challenge to the ways we think and work. Technology is enabler but efforts beyond that are required to inform, educate and empower people of the country. This was stated by Shri Kapil Sibal, Union Minister for Communication and Information Technology (C&IT) at the launching of Logo and Website of the NKN here today. He said we need to work even harder to reap the benefits of this kind of network and put it to the use of the children and people in the remote parts of India.Speaking from Chicago through video conferencing, Shri Sam Pitroda, Advisor to the Prime Minister on Public Information Infrastructure and Innovations appreciated and thanked the entire team for making the NKN possible in a very short period. He emphasised the need to take fibre based connectivity to all the 2,50,000 panchayats and all the municipalities in the country.

Later speaking on the occasion, Shri Sachin Pilot MoS for C&IT said in this era of Information Communication Technology (ICT) influencing every life NKN will enable Indians to reach new heights. The Government’s endeavour is that with best IT infrastructure India must keep an edge over the world to be the super power in the field of Information Technology. This NKN will equip young Indians to face the global challenges in the times to come.

Dr. R. Chidambaram, Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India and Chairperson of the NKN High Level Committee made an interactive presentation demonstrating how the NKN will connect various stakeholders. Representatives from IIT Indore, IIT Hyderabad, IIT Guwahati, IIT Madras, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, CSIR , Ministry of Earth Sciences and BARC participated in the live interaction .

Speaking on the occasion, the Secretary, Shri S.K. Sharma, Department of Information Technology said that the NKN will transform the knowledge landscape of the country.

National Knowledge Network (NKN) envisages connecting all higher centres of learning and research by bringing together all stakeholders from science, technology, higher education, healthcare, agriculture and governance to a common platform. Initially, the decision to set up NKN was announced in 2008-09 with an allocation of Rs.100 crore to the Department of Information Technology, Ministry of Communications and IT. Hon’ble President of India, Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil inaugurated the NKN on 9th April, 2009. Since then this vision has translated into a concrete implementation plan with approval form Cabinet in March, 2010. An outlay of Rs. 5,990 Crore has been approved for this project and it shall be implemented by NIC over a period of next two years and operated for over next 10 years.

The implementation of NKN is currently underway and aims to accomplish connectivity to approximately 550+ institutions across the country by March, 2011.In Phase-I, the Service Providers are connecting the NKN Points of Presence (PoPs) with 2.5Gigabits bandwidth links. The bandwidth of these PoP’s shall be enhanced from 2.5G to 10G in the next year. So far, 76 links for the creation of the backbone for NKN project have been established. Also, connectivity with 200 edge links for various institutions has been accomplished.

Tarun Vijay BJP Spokesperson

Egypt sinking in chaos

President Hosni Mubarak's powerful son Gamal and top leaders of ruling party on Saturday quit their posts, but their conciliatory gesture drew a blank amid mounting pressure from protestors demanding the immediate ouster of the Egyptian leader demonstrators on a 12th day of anti-regime protests rejected the shuffle as a show off measure.According to official MENA news agency, it was his first meeting with the new ministers after he sacked the previous government last week in a bid to appease the protesters. Reports say that country’s Vice President Omar Suleiman is likely to meet opposition in an attempt to defuse tense situation in the country.

The six-member steering committee of the National Democratic Party, including secretary-general Safwat el-Sharif, stepped down in a move to calm down protests against Mubarak.Hossam Badrawi, prominent physician who is reputed to have good relations with opposition figures, has been appointed as the NDP secretary general.
Earlier reports had said the President had also quit the National Democratic Party, but the state TV did not name the president and announced that members of the top decision-making committee had resigned from their posts.The top executive of the ruling National Democratic Party, which includes the president's son Gamal Mubarak who is head of the powerful policies committee, resigned from ruling party, state television said."The members of the executive committee resigned from their posts," it said. Gamal, a member of the Steering Committee, has been seen as being groomed by his father to succeed him as president.Omar Suleiman, the Vice President promised last week that Gamal would not run for president in elections due in September. Uncertainty and tension gripped Egypt with international clamour growing on beleaguered President to hand over power immediately as saboteurs blew up a key gas pipeline to Israel adding a fresh dimension to the 12-day old crisis in the Arab nation.

As unprecedented protests raged at the famous Tahrir Square in central Cairo, the state TV reported "dangerous explosions continuing from one spot to another" in the main source of gas supplying pipeline in El Arish.With no let up in protests fury, President Mubarak, who appeared increasingly cornered, held a meeting of his new cabinet to revive the economy and project calm in the face of the increasing turmoil.

The meeting was attended by Egypt's new Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq as well as the central bank governor and the ministers of petroleum, social solidarity, trade and industry, and finance.Egypt frees Al-Jazeera bureau chief, journalist,the Al-Jazeera bureau chief in Cairo and one of its journalists were freed on Saturday, the Doha-based television channel said amid anti-government protests in Egypt.Abdel Fattah Fayed and Mohammed Fawi, a journalist detained during the protests, were released, the pan-Arab channel, which has been banned since last Sunday from operating in Egypt, reported.Fayed was detained on Saturday along with another journalist, Ahmed Yousef, a day after the satellite channel said that its offices in the Egyptian capital had been burned by a "gang of thugs" and its website had been hacked by "opponents of the pro-democracy movement in Egypt."

As uncertainty gripped Egypt, US President Barack Obama has delivered a clear hint to Hosni Mubarak to step down by listening to his people and make the "right decision".Calling for immediate start of an "orderly transition" in Egypt, where tens of thousands of people are rallying for ouster of Mubarak, Obama said the Egyptian strongman should reconsider his position amid a mass uprising.

"In order for Egypt to have a bright future, the only thing that will work is moving an orderly transition process that begins right now that engages all parties, leads to democratic practises, fair and free elections, and representative government that is responsive to the grievances of the Egyptian people," Obama said during his joint interaction with visiting Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

As unrest escalated in the North African nation, Obama had telephonic talk on the situation with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
"He (Mubarak) needs to listen to what is being voiced by the Egyptian people, and make a judgement about the way forward that is orderly, but that is meaningful and serious," the US President said.Though Obama did not explicitly say that Mubarak should leave power immediately, but his choice of words made it clear that Washington is pinning for an immediate political transition in Egypt that does not include Mubarak.Obama's message for change came as the New York Times quoting top US officials reported that US is pushing for Vice President Omar Sulaiman to head a new transition government backed by the army.Egypt's Prime Minster Ahmed Shafiq, however, ruled out a possibility that Mubarak would hand over or transfer power to Sulaiman.Obama said since Mubarak has himself announced he is not going to be running again, he should be thinking on how to leave a legacy behind in which Egypt is able to get through this trans formative period.Terming the Egyptian President as a proud patriot, Obama said he has suggested Mubarak that he needs to consult with those who are in his government."Having made that psychological break, that decision that he will not be running again, I think its most important for him to ask himself, for the Egyptian government to ask itself as well as the opposition to ask itself is, how do we make the transition effective, lasting and legitimate?" Obama said.During each of his conversations with Mubarak, Obama said he emphasised the fact that the future of Egypt is going to be in the hands of Egyptians.
Asserting that attacks on journalists, human rights activists and protesters in Egypt are "unacceptable", US President Barack Obama has said that his administration is closely monitoring the situation in the country.

"In recent days we've seen violence and harassment erupt on the streets of Egypt that violates human rights, universal values and international norms. So we are sending a strong and unequivocal message. Attacks on reporters, human rights activists and peaceful protesters are unacceptable," Obama said at a joint news conference with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper on Friday.

Stressing that the issues at stake in Egypt will not be resolved through violence or suppression, Obama said he has been encouraged by the restraint shown on Friday and hoped that it continues."The situation in Egypt is fluid and the US is monitoring it closely," he said.Noting that the Egyptian government has the responsibility to protect rights of its people, he said those demonstrating also have a responsibility to do so peacefully.Acknowledging that the future of Egypt will be determined by its people, Obama said, "It's also clear that there needs to be a transition process that begins now. That transition must initiate a process that respects the universal rights of the Egyptian people and that leads to free and fair elections."

Obama said his administration is consulting widely within Egypt and the international community to communicate their belief that a successful and orderly transition must be meaningful.TheUS President said negotiations should include a broad representation of the Egyptian opposition, and this transition must address the legitimate grievances of those who seek a better future."We want to see this moment of turmoil turn into a moment of opportunity. The entire world is watching. What we hope for and what we will work for is a future where all of Egyptian society seizes that opportunity," Obama said."Right now, a great and ancient civilisation is going through a time of tumult and transition. And even as there are grave challenges and great uncertainty, I am confident that the Egyptian people can shape the future that they deserve," he added.

Opposition figure Mohammad Al Bardei has said that President Mubarak should listen the voices of the people and leave with dignity.
The European Union's 27 leaders said at a summit in Brussels that Egypt's transition process must start now and condemned the violence.

Egypt's Health Ministry has said that 12 people were killed and more than 1200 injured in the fighting at Tahrir square.Egyptian authorities have arrested Al-Jazeera's bureau chief and one of its journalists in Cairo as anti-government protests continue.Mubarak shows no sign of ending his 30-year grip on power as international calls grow for him to go. Thousands of people are still in Cairo's central Tahir Square, which has become the focus of nationwide protests. Clashes left at least eight people dead and more than 800 hurt on Wednesday and Thursday.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Quake rocks North East India

Earthquake measuring six point four (6.4) magnitude rocked Assam, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Imphal at 19.23 hours this evening. The epicenter of the quake is said to be the border areas of India and Myanmar.AIR Guwahati Correspondent reports that cracks developed in several high-rise buildings following the moderate intensity jerks which continued for around 30 seconds. There was no immediate report of any casualty from anywhere in the North East.While, an earthquake measuring six point four (6.4) on Richter scale rocked Meghalaya at 7:24 in the evening. Major tremor lasted for 30 seconds.

According to Regional Meteorological Centre, Guwahati, epicenter of the quake was Manipur-Myanmar border at 24.8 Latitude North and 94.5 Longitude East.Minor tremors are still recorded on Richter scale but is not felt by humans. There was no immediate report of any casualty from anywhere in the North East. Arunachal Pradesh a moderate earthquake hit the state in this evening at 07.24 pm today.

According to the office of the Meteorological Department, Shillong, the tremor measuring 6.4 on the Richter scale occurred with its epicenter at 24.8 degrees north Latitude and 94.8 degrees east Longitude.The epicentre of this earthquake was Mayanmar-India border region. There were no immediate reports of any casualty or damages in the state.In Imphal, an earthquake measuring 6.5 Richter scale has occurred. The epicenter of the earthquake was in CHIN wind river, 88 km from Imphal. The earth quake occurred at 7.24 p.m. and remained for more than 10 minutes.

"Tex-Trends India 2011" Best Display Awards

Prof Nalan Koc:Polar Research Future Collaboration :Sagar Media Inc

Ministry of Mines, Shri Dinsha Patel Sagar Media Inc

International Seminar on Kumarajiva

A three-day International Seminar and exhibition to critically study and evaluate the contribution of Kumarajiva in enhancement of Indo-Chinese cultural relations and other related issues began here today under the aegis of Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (Union Ministry of Culture).

The event is valuable because generations after generations acknowledge Kumarajiva’s brilliance, wisdom, proficiency in Sanskrit and Chinese languages and above all his obeisance to the sacred voice. Kumarajiva along with Dharmaraksa and Hsuan-tsang is the master who stands out by his preeminence virtue and by spreading the subtle philosophical systems of Buddhism. The process was begun by Dharmaraksa who was a Yueh-chih which found its full flowering in Kumarajiva and culmination in Hsuan-tsang. Kumarajiva remains central to practical Buddhism in East Asia. He has bequeathed to us a casket of sacred sutras as the most authoritative presentations by creating pure, boundless and unthinkable versions. The impact of his works can still be felt in almost all the schools/sects of Mahayana Buddhism in East Asia.

Kumarajiva, a great philosopher, son of a Kashmiri Brahmana, Kumarayana and a Kuchean Princess, Jiva, a Sanskritist had an encyclopedic knowledge of Buddhism and Vedic learning. He was equally proficient in Chinese and Sanskrit. He transcreated the Sanskrit Sutras into such a literary Chinese languages, his style was so distinct, possessing flowing smoothness, that generations after generations draw their spiritual values from his translations. Writers, sculptures, painters, philosophers, emperors and empresses were inspired by his philosophy in East Asia over the past centuries.

The inaugural session of the seminar began with the keynote address of Prof. Charles Willemen, member, Royal Academy of Sciences, Belgium. Eminent scholars from several countries have joined with their dedicated researches, to discuss the life and legacy of Kumarajiva for three days at IGNCA. The impact of Kumarajiva’s works can still be felt in the lives of the people in East Asia.

The exhibition organized for the event is a slip into the life and legacy of Kumarajiva visualizing the places where he was born, studied, meditated propagated at is finally at rest in China. Rare manuscripts, paintings and sculptures from various museums, monasteries and caves are not merely a visual delight; it is a source of inspiration for those who seek spiritual values.

Prof. Charles Willemen on Kumarajiva, Philosopher and Seer

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Marouf Bakhit the PM:Jordan King Abdullah

Jordan has its own political ramification hence On Tuesday, Jordanian King Abdullah dismissed his government and appointed a new prime minister.King Abdullah appointing Marouf Bakhit to head the country's new government:The appointment of the ex-army general and former ambassador to Israel follows three weeks of street protests over rising prices, inflation and unemployment.On Tuesday, the king dismissed Prime Minister Samir Rifai from his post along with his cabinet.

Yemen President Ali Abdullah Saleh not to contest in 2013

Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh announced that he shall not seek re-election after his ter expires on 2013 appears to be fallout from the popular uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia and could continue to spread across the region. Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, said today he will not seek to extend his presidency when his current term ends in 2013. Saleh has ruled the Yemen for 32 years. Yemenese opposition groups are planning to a stage a large rally, dubbed a Day of Rage, on Thursday.

Mubarak refuses to step down

Defiant Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak Wednesday refused to step down immediately but said he will not fight for another term in September, an announcement rejected by protesters who demanded his ouster by Friday.In a televised address, Mubarak said, "I say in all honesty and regardless of the current situation that I did not intend to nominate myself for a new presidential term." In a televised address, Mubarak said, "I say in all honesty and regardless of the current situation that I did not intend to nominate myself for a new presidential term."

Making it clear that he was in no mood to give up power as of now, Mubarak said he would seek changes to the constitution and called on "parliament to discuss amendments to Articles 76 (which narrows the pool of potential presidential candidates) and Article 77 (which allows for unlimited presidential terms) of the constitution to change the conditions for presidential candidacy and limit terms."

The next presidential election is scheduled for September. Until now, officials had indicated 82-year-old Mubarak would likely run for a sixth six-year term of office. Mubarak also said he has no intentions of leaving Egypt."This is my country. This is where I lived, I fought and defended its land, sovereignty and interests, and I will die on its soil," he said. Shortly after his speech, clashes broke out between pro-Mubarak and anti-government groups in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria.

Stone-pelting youths at Alexandria's Mahatit Masr Square scattered as automatic gunfire rang out and a tank advanced towards them before halting and then withdrawing.There was no sign of any casualties, however. Mubarak's words failed to convince over a million protesters gathered at the Cairo's Tahrir Square.

They resumed their "Leave, Mubarak!" chant shortly after his speech. Tens of thousands of unrelenting protesters who had converged on the Tahrir Square chanted, "we won't leave tomorrow, we won't leave Thursday ...", in a clear message that they will continue their protest till Mubarak steps down.

The speech was Mubarak's second direct address to the nation since the most serious challenge to his 30-year-rule began nine days ago. Earlier on Saturday, he sacked his Cabinet, named a vice-president for the first time and promised economic and political reforms.The protesters jammed in shoulder-to-shoulder turning Tahrir Square into a sea of humanity in the "march of a million", after the powerful military showed signs of distancing itself from the besieged President vowing that it would not fire on the protesters.At the beginning of his speech, Mubarak said that "the young people" have the right to peaceful demonstrations.But his tone quickly turned accusatory, and he lashed out at his detractors saying the protesters had been "taken advantage of" by people trying to "undermine the government".

Mubarak's address came as he virtually lost the backing of his strongest ally - the US - with President Barack Obama reportedly sending a message through an envoy to Mubarak not to run for another term.Nobel peace prize winner and opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei dismissed Mubarak's speech as an "act of deception".

ElBaradei said if Mubarak did not heed the call to leave power at once, he would be "not only a lame-duck president but a dead man walking". "He's unfortunately going to extend the agony here for another six, seven months. He continues to polarise the country. He continues to get people even more angry and could (resort) to violence," he was quoted as saying by Al Jazeera.

The protests in Egypt erupted close on the heels of the events in Tunisia, where a popular uprising ended the 23-year-reign of Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali.Obama calls for immediate beginning of transition in Egypt President Barack Obama called for immediate beginning of an orderly transition in Egypt, which has witnessed massive protests seeking the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak.

"What is clear, and what I indicated tonight to President Mubarak, is my belief that an orderly transition must be meaningful, it must be peaceful, and it must begin now," Obama said in his speech at the White House after he spoke for 30 minutes with Mubarak, who ruling Egypt for three decades.

The process of orderly transition must include a broad spectrum of Egyptian voices in opposition parties, he said. "It should lead to elections that are free and fair. And it should result in a government that's not only grounded in democratic principles, but is also responsive to the aspirations of the Egyptian people," Obama asserted.Referring to his conversation with Mubarak, the second one in less than a week, Obama said the Egyptian leader understood the status quo is not sustainable and that a change must take place.

"Indeed, all of us who are privileged to serve in positions of political power do so at the will of our people. Through thousands of years, Egypt has known many moments of transformation. The voices of the Egyptian people tell us that this is one of those moments, this is one of those times." US President said his administration has been in close contact with its Egyptian counterpart and a broad range of the Egyptian people, as well as others across the region and across the globe.
"And throughout this period, we've stood for a set of core principles," he said.
Obama also praised Egyptian army for not using force against agitators and allowing peaceful protests.

"First, we oppose violence. And I want to commend the Egyptian military for the professionalism and patriotism that it has shown thus far in allowing peaceful protests while protecting the Egyptian people. "We've seen tanks covered with banners, and soldiers and protesters embracing in the streets. And going forward, I urge the military to continue its efforts to help ensure that this time of change is peaceful," he said.
President Obama said he supports rights of speech and information to the Egyptians and US will continue to back democracy in Egypt.
"We stand for universal values, including the rights of the Egyptian people to freedom of assembly, freedom of speech and the freedom to access information. Once more we've seen the incredible potential for technology to empower citizens, and the dignity of those who stand up for a better future. And going forward, the United States will continue to stand up for democracy and the universal rights that all human beings deserve, in Egypt and around the world," he said.

US will continue to extend the hand of partnership and friendship to Egypt, and it stands ready to provide any assistance that is necessary to help the Egyptian people as they manage the aftermath of these protests."Over the last few days, the passion and the dignity that has been demonstrated by the people of Egypt has been an inspiration to people around the world, including here in the United States, and to all those who believe in the inevitability of human freedom," Obama said."To the people of Egypt, particularly the young people of Egypt, I want to be clear: We hear your voices. I have an unyielding belief that you will determine your own destiny, and seize the promise of a better future for your children and your grandchildren. And I say that as someone who is committed to a partnership between the United States and Egypt," he added.

Delhi Sikhs Citizen Council Meet

Best Gram Panchayats

Twelve Gram Panchayats from seven states have been selected for the Award under the Scheme of Awards for Best Performing Gram Panchayats for the year 2009-10. These are Khairwahi (Dondi Block) and Machandur (Durg Block) from Durg District of Chhattisgarh; Kalauna (Dadwali Block) from Sirsa Disstrict of Haryana; Nedumkandam (Nedumkandam Block) from Idduki and Kottukal (Athiyannoor Block) from Thiruvanthapuram districts of Kerala; Pandurna (Mukhed Block) from Nanded district of Maharashtra; Pampura (Asind Block) from district Bhilwara and Badwas Choti (Kushalgarh Block) from Banswara district of Rajasthan; Chuba Phong (Namathang Block) from South Sikkim district of Sikkim and Dhamna (Mauranipur Block) and Dhamna Khurd (Chirgaon Block) from district Jhansi in Uttar Pradesh.

These Panchayats will be awarded tomorrow at a function in Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi to mark the completion of 5th year of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) by the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and the UPA Chairperson Smt. Sonia Gandhi. Union Minister for Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Shri Vilasrao Deshmukh will inaugurate the Sammelan.

These Panchayats have been selected by Ministry of Panchayati Raj after assessing their all round performance and their ability in delivering the results as per the demand. The parameter of selection is based on their contribution in implementing the MGNREGA .

The precise role of GP in implementing MG NREGA depends upon Initiatives undertaken in creating awareness on MGNREGA in the village to enable the wage seekers to seek job under the Act; providing job to families who demanded work under MGNREGA for employment during the year and keeping their proper record. This include No. of Group applications,:Oral applications, Worksite applications and No of advance applications received as on date and also the record of families getting job along with those who didn’t got job.

The type of work under the MGNREGA comprises of Water conservation/ Drought proofing; Plantation; Roads/culverts; Irrigation works; Land development; Renovation/de-silting of tanks/ponds; Flood control & protection works; and Other works.

Details of worksite management include Number of mates, their selection process and provision of training to them, Planning and selection of shelf of projects – details of there planners and was the works for NREGA was recommended by Gram Sabha. Timeline followed for NREGA works planning encompasses (i) the detail of the minutes of the Gram Sabha meeting held on every 2nd October to plan NREGA works and (ii) the meeting of 15th October every year to ascertain whether the GP developmental plan based on GS recommendations submitted to Block for approval. The Mode of payment adopted under MGNREGA in the village :Cash;Bank; Post Office Accounts; Biometric or any other. Record of Delay in payments and the procedure of Social audit of all works being done.

No. of work site inspection conducted and No. of separate Registers maintained is also a parameter for selection. These registers are for Registration,Job Card, Muster Roll, Emplyment, Works, Assests, Complaint and Monthly allotment and utilisation certificate watch register.

The Wage material ratio: wage component (in percentage) and record of Any complaint received from NREGA workers regarding work site facilities available is also a part of the parameters.

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