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The Indian Awaaz (theindianawaaz.com) is a fast growing English news website based in New Delhi. Website covers Politics, Economy/Business, Entertainment, Health, Education, Technology, Fashion, Lifestyle, Stock Market, Commercial issues and much more. It has separate sections in Hindi and Urdu too.

‘Democracy and Honesty Lost’: Rahul Gandhi says after Congress-JD(S) Defeat

WEB DESK

After the Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) coalition government in Karnataka collapsed on Tuesday, former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi likened the development to “a defeat of democracy and honesty” and said that the “greed” of the BJP had prevailed.

“From its first day, the Congress-JDS alliance in Karnataka was a target for vested interests, both within and outside, who saw the alliance as a threat and an obstacle in their path to power.

Their greed won today. Democracy, honesty & the people of Karnataka lost,” Gandhi said in a tweet. ‘Democracy and Honesty Lost’: Rahul Gandhi Says ‘Vested Interests’ Behind Congress-JD(S) Defeat.
Reacting to the development, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said the BJP one day will discover that everything cannot be bought, everyone cannot be bullied and every lie is eventually exposed.

“Until then I suppose, the citizens of our country will have to endure their unbridled corruption, the systematic dismantling of institutions that protect the people’s interests and the weakening of a democracy that took decades of toil and sacrifice to build,” she said in a tweet.

Responding to Rahul Gandhi’s tweet, the Karnataka BJP accused him of again “not making sense”. The party added it was the Congress party’s desperation to hold on to power that had led to its latest loss.

West Bengal govt to bring legislation for Journalists’ job security..

Our Correspondent / Kolkata

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee led West Bengal government has decided to bring legislation in the Assembly for ensuring the job security for Journalists in the State.

Inaugurating the 75th year celebrations of the Kolkata Press Club Tuesday, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said that the legislation aims at social security of Journalist. Besides, it will deal with the issues of retrenchment of Journalists and closure of TV channels and Newspapers publication houses.

Ms. Banerjee sought suggestions from Kolkata Press Club on the issue. She also announced sanctioning of land for housing complex of Journalists besides 2nd campus of the Press club in the city.

The Chief Minister handed over pension papers to the Journalists instituted by the State government and felicitated senior workers of the club.

Chief Minister also gifted Rs. 1 lakh and one rupee to the Kolkata Press Club which has completed its 75 years of existence.

Mamata clarified that the money which has been given to the club is completely her personal.

“I am not giving the money from my party fund. This is my personal contribution. I don’t take salary from the state government. I remained the MP for seven terms but I don’t take any pension. The money which I am giving is completely from the royalty which I get by writing books and selling music CDs,” the Chief Minister said.

MP Assembly passes Bill raising OBC quota to 27%

 

AMN / BHOPAL

Madhya Pradesh Assembly Tuesday unanimously passed an amendment Bill raising reservation in government jobs and education for Other Backward Classes (OBC) to 27 per cent from the present 14 per cent.

The Bill is now going to the Governor and President for assent.

Reservation for Scheduled Caste-SC is 16 per cent and for Scheduled Tribes-ST stands at 20 per cent.

Soon after the bill was cleared, Public Relations and Law Minister PC Sharma took on the previous Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) regime for having failed to do the same.

He said the BJP was in power for 15 years in the state and at the helm were those who represented the OBC category, but nothing was done during its rule. All the three BJP chief ministers since 2003 — Uma Bharti, Babulal Gaur and Shivraj Singh Chouhan — belonged to this category.

Earlier in March this year, ahead of Lok Sabha polls, the Madhya Pradesh government had brought an ordinance raising OBC quota to 27 per cent. It was, however, stayed by the Madhya Pradesh High Court.

During the discussion, some MLAs also demanded that quota be introduced in the private sector. Leader of Opposition Gopal Bhargava demanded that creamy layer be introduced within the OBC quota so that its benefit could reach those who never took benefit of such reservation.

Mr. Bhargava said a provision of at least 7 per cent quota for Ati-Pichhda-extremely backward under the OBC category should be introduced. He said the extremely backward quota in other states will be analyzed.

Rahul Gandhi demands Modi’s response to Trump’s Kashmir claim

WEB DESK / New Delhi

Soon after External Affair’s Minister S Jaishankar denied US president Donald Trump’s claim that PM Narendra Modi asked him to resolve the Kashmir issue in Parliament, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi Tuesday demanded answers from the PM saying a “weak foreign ministry denial won’t do”.

Gandhi tweeted, “A weak Foreign Ministry denial won’t do. PM must tell the nation what transpired in meeting between him & US President.” He also added that if Trump’s claims are found to be true, Modi has “betrayed India’s interests & 1972 Simla Agreement.”

During a meeting with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan at the White House Monday, US President Trump said he had discussed the Kashmir issue with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of G-20 Summit and that he would “love to be a mediator.”

Speaking in the Rajya Sabha, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar “specifically and categorically” denied US President Donald Trump’s claim. “I would like to reiterate that all engagements with Pakistan will remain only bilateral. I would also like to reiterate that bilateral dialogue is only possible when Pakistan ends cross-border terrorism. The Simla Agreement and the Lahore Declaration lay the path for any talks on the said issue,” he added.

Amarnath Yatra crosses last year’s mark of 2.85 lakh in 22 days

WEB DESK

The ongoing annual Shri Amarnath Yatra has crossed the last year’s mark of 2 lakh 85 thousand in the last 22 days. On the 22nd day of the Yatra yesterday, over 13 thousand 3 hundred devotees paid obeisance at the Holy Cave Shrine.

Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) officials said that cumulatively since the beginning of the pilgrimage on 1st July, over 2 lakh 85 thousand 3 hundred Yatris had darshan of Shivling at the Holy Cave Shrine.

They said during last year’s Yatra of 60 days, the total number of pilgrims who visited Holy Cave Shrine was 2,85,006, whereas this year the pilgrimage crossed this number in 22 days.

Meanwhile, those Yatris who fell ill and need medical treatment are regularly air evacuated from hilly difficult camp areas along the tracks from both Nunwan Pahalgam and Baltal Ganderbal routes.

In all 14 critically sick Yatris have been air evacuated for immediate specialized treatment.

The 46 day Yatra will conclude on August 15 coinciding with Raksha Bandhan and Shravan Purnima.

Uttarakhand: HC asks panel to conclude probe into MLA’s caste certificate by Aug 31

AGENCIES

The Uttarakhand High Court has directed an administrative panel examining the authenticity of BJP MLA from Jhabreda, Deshraj Karnawal’s caste certificate to complete its probe by August 31.

Chief Justice Ramesh Ranganathan and Justice Alok Verma issued the order while hearing a petition terming the legislator’s caste certificate as fake and seeking cancellation of his election from the reserved seat on that ground.

The petition claims that Karnawal does not belong to the scheduled caste, and hence was not eligible to contest from Jhabreda, a reserved assembly constituency in Haridwar district.

The plea was filed by Haridwar resident Vipin Tomar. Karnawal who had won the seat in 2017, said that a lie is being spread about his caste identity by his political adversaries.

Govt to install Solar projects of 40,000 MW by 2022

AMN / NEW DELHI

The government has set a target for the installation of Rooftop Solar projects of forty thousand MegaWatt by 2022 in the country.

In a written reply in Rajya Sabha, New and Renewable Energy Minister RK Singh said, the projects include installation of solar panels on the rooftop of houses. He said, over 1700 Mega Watt of grid-connected rooftop systems has been installed in the country till 18th of this month.

Mr. Singh said his ministry is implementing Grid Connected Rooftop Solar programme. The Minister said on an average it is estimated that 1.5 million units per MegaWatt per year are generated from solar rooftop plants.

Parliament passes Finance Bill..

B MISHRA / NEW DELHI

Parliament on Tuesday passed the Finance Bill 2019 and Appropriation Bill 2019 with the Rajya Sabha returning them to the Lower House.

The Lok Sabha has already passed the bills. The Finance bill gives effect to the financial proposals of the Central Government for the financial year 2019-20. While the Appropriation Bill seeks to authorise payment and appropriation of certain sums from and out of the Consolidated Fund of India for the services of the financial year 2919-20.

Replying to the debate on the bills in the Rajya Sabha, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the government brought changes related to the taxation with an aim for building new India where there is transparency, less government and more governance.

Ms Sitharaman justified raising cess on petrol and diesel by two rupees per litre each saying inflation is at rock bottom and the government has maintained inflation at the lowest level for last five years so the move would not add any significant burden on prices.

She said, the government has also come out in support of farmers with various measures including providing 6000 rupees to them annually under PM -KISAN. She said, the government has brought down the corporate tax from 30 per cent to 25 per cent as it had decided in 2014 and over ninety per cent of the companies have come under this tax rate.

She said, under direct taxation, there are seven acts to which amendments have been made in the Finance Bill which are largely for ease of living and making sure that equity in redistribution takes place.

On the issue of increase on the basic customs duty on newsprint, the Finance Minister said, it has been done to provide a level playing field to the domestic manufacturers and there is capacity in India to produce newsprint which needs to be utilized.

She said, the government has not reduced the financial assistance to States under central sponsored schemes despite the increase in devolution funds to states from 32 per cent to 42 per cent. On direct taxation code, the Minister said, the task force has completed its work and they will submit the reports by the end of this month.

Members from other political parties including BJP, BJD and TRS participated in the discussion.

Lok Sabha passes Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill

The Lok Sabha today passed the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill, 2019 by voice vote. The bill seeks to amend the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 to provide for road safety.

Provisions related to increasing penalties of traffic violations, addressing issues on third-party insurance, regulation of cab aggregators and road safety are proposed in the amendment.

The Bill proposes a scheme to allow cashless treatment of victims in a road accident during the golden hour.

The golden hour is defined as the time period of up to one hour following a traumatic injury, during which the likelihood of preventing death through prompt medical care is the highest.

The Bill proposes to increase the minimum compensation for hit and run cases.

In case of the death, the compensation has been raised from 25 thousand to two lakh rupees, and in case of grievous injury, it will be from 12 thousand 500 to 50 thousand rupees.

Replying to a debate on the bill, Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said that the legislation will weed out corruption, improve road safety and usher in the use of more technology to regulate traffic.

He said, it is a matter of concern that around 1.50 lakh people die and 5 lakh people injured annually in road accidents.

He appreciated the measures taken by the Tamil Nadu Government in reducing the number of accidents by 29 per cent in the last two years and the Centre will adopt the Tamil Nadu model in reducing the accidents.

Mr Gadkari made it clear that the legislation will no way encroach the rights of the States regarding their own Act in this regard. He said, the bill also proposes to develop a National Transportation Policy, in consultation with the States.

Mr Gadkari said the legislation also proposes the constitution of a National Road Safety Board, which will consult the State and the Central governments on road safety and the management of traffic.

ITR filing deadline extended

AMN / NEW DELHI

The government has extended the deadline for filing of Income Tax returns by individuals for the financial year 2018-19 to August 31 from July 31.

The Finance Ministry in an official release said the decision has been taken after it was reported that some of the taxpayers were facing difficulties in filing their income tax returns due to various reasons including the extension of due date for issue of Form 16 for the Assesment Year 2019-20.