BCCI remains firm with S. Sreesanth lifetime ban

Citing that the Kerela High Court’s decision was contrary to the present rules of the organisation, Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), has filed an appeal against the lifting the lifetime the ban on former-bowler S Sreesanth. According to ANI, this came after Kerala High Court’s judgment on August 7 as the board was unhappy with the HC’s motion and seeks to reprimand the judgment.

In an affidavit in the beginning of 2017, the BCCI had stated that the standard proof required under a penal statute was much higher than the proof required for a disciplinary inquiry. This implies that the accused may be free of the criminal charges (following the evidence)  however, but can be apprehended if the internal disciplinary rules of an organisation are violated.

The court’s response to the affidavit was stated in the current motion which lifts the ban. It said that BCCI failed to acknowledge the evidence as a whole. It pointed that only empty allegations that were made by the plaintiff could only submit confessions of the accused, which the defended said were forced out of him.

Sreesanth was accused of spot-fixing during the 2013 Indian Premier League (IPL) along with two other teammates of the same club. Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan still face a permanent career ban whereas Sreesanth was acquitted in 2015.

Sources: Indian Express & Times of India


Odisha Assembly passes Land Rights to Slum Dwellers Bill, 2017

Acknowledging the demographic shift from rural to urban areas of Bhubaneswar and other urban hubs, Housing and Urban Development minister, Niranjan Pujari introduced the Odisha Land Rights to Slum Dwellers Bill, 2017 on Wednesday on the second day of the Odisha Assembly. Described as a historical move by the politicians from the state, the bill was introduced with three other bills on the same day.

The bills state that land will be provided to slum dwellers who are residing in the Municipalities and Notified Area Councils (NACs). According to the 2011 census, the minister added that 23.1 per cent of the urban population is residing in the slums and a certified transformation of these areas is imperative. The provisions of the bill certify the land as heritable, mortgageable and non-transferrable

Narasingha Mishra, the Leader of Opposition from Congress also sought the importance of the bill. Expressing his satisfaction with the bill, the leader called it ‘boon to people belonging from economic weaker section’. From the sceptics, BJP member Rabi Nayak also expressed his joy over the bill but warms the ruling party to not use it for political gain.

Although the session briefly came to a halt over the ruckus created by opposition parties due to the PC or ‘percentage commission’ culture in government offices, the bill successfully passed along with The Odisha Sales Tax (Settlement of Arrears) Amendment Bill, 2017, The Odisha Motor Vehicle Taxation (Amendment) Bill, 2017 and The Odisha Agricultural Produce Markets (Amendment) Bill, 2017.

News Source: New Odisha, Indian Express

Image Source: Odisha Sun Times

China reiterates claim over Doklam in a 15-page document, asks Indian troops to leave

The stand-off between India and China over Doklam crisis has taken a new turn on Wednesday, despite diplomatic talks between National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval and his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi last week. The Chinese embassy in Delhi, in a very unusual instance, has issued a 15-page ‘non-paper,’ reiterating its claim over Dokhlam. A ‘non-paper’ is an informal statement used in diplomatic negotiations.

In the 15-page document, China cited a 2006 treaty between the two countries where both India and China agreed upon the boundary alignment mentioned in 1890 treaty between China And Great Britain.  It also contains two pictures marking the demarcations through lines and arrows.

There has been no statement by the Indian officials over the documents yet. Since June 30, India has released any statement over the Doklam issue. China claims that Indian soldiers have illegally crossed India-China border on June 18 and settled camps in its territory. India had countered Chinese troops from constructing road by sending 270 soldiers last month. In almost a month, the troop size has increased to nearly 400 and China has constantly countered India’s stance.

On June 30, Ministry of External Affairs, Sushma Swaraj made a short statement in the Parliament, stating the world leaders support India over Doklam crisis, which later refuted by a Chinese media.

News Source: Hindustan Times, Indian Express

Image Source: NDTV

Son of Taliban leader dies carrying out suicide attack

The son of current Taliban supreme leader Mawlavi Haibatullah Akhundzada died carrying out a suicide attack in the southern province of Helmand district. Reported by Reuters, the news broke out on a website affiliated with the Afghan Taliban.

The attacker is identified as Abdul Rahman, who registered himself to carry out the attack even before his father, current supreme leader replaced his predecessor in 2016. On Thursday morning, the insurgents began a series of fresh attacks in the southern province using High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle ( HMMWV) which belonged to the Afghan security forces. Rahman smashed the vehicle laden with explosives into the base of the forces on Saturday.

Rahman’s father, Mawlavi Haibatullah was appointed as the leader after his predecessor died in a drone attack in Pakistan operated by the American forces in May, 2016. Until his leadership, suicide attacks were mainly carried forward by close relatives and associates. Haibatullah has become the first supreme leader whose son sacrificed his life,” a Taliban spokesperson said.

The government officials are speculating the nature of the attack was to control the opium fields in the region. Security officials also said that with the recent, the insurgents were able to penetrate their first line of defense.

Sources: Daily News, Indian Express

Reliance Jio to launch its 1st 4G feature phone

After weeks of speculation. Reliance Industry Limited (RIL) chairman, Mukesh Ambani confirmed the launch of Jio’s own featured phone, naming JioPhone. This was announced at the 40th annual general meeting in Mumbai.

Ambani describes that the phone is effectively free to buy. An initial deposit of Rs 1500 needs to be given while purchasing the phone, however, it will be refundable after three years on returning the device. Although the launch date is set to be in September, the pre-booking will begin from August 24.

“Jio will become India’s largest provider of data service, products and application platforms”, Ambani addressed during the announcement. The conference is available online for the public to watch via Reliance’s official Twitter and Facebook page.

JioPhone offers 2.4 QVGA display with special Jio applications and four-way navigation system. Other feature includes FM Radio, SD card slot,  3.5 mm headphone jack, torch light, and an alphanumeric keyboard. The phone will also incorporate the Jio network which will allow users to make calls for free of cost. The Jio Dhan Dhana Dhan offer is best suited for the phone. This monthly plan can provide unlimited call, SMS, and the data facility.

The company is also set to launch Jio Phone cable TV at Rs 309 per month. The cable TV will allow the users to connect their JioPhones to any TV for 3-4 hours.


Sources: The Economic Times, Times of India


Smriti Irani gets additional charge of I&B Ministry

Bharatiya Janata Party Union Ministers, Smriti Irani, and Narendra Tomar on Tuesday were given the additional charge of the Information and Broadcast and Urban Development respectively. This came after the resignation of Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu, who previously held the two offices, reported Indian Express. He will now contest for the Vice Presidential election in August.

In a series of tweets, Irani congratulated Naidu and thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “With blessings of PM @narendramodi ji, took Additional Charge of @MIB_India. My gratitude to Hon. Prime Minister for his continued guidance”, Irani tweeted.

Both Irani and Tomar who are the incumbent Union Ministers of Textiles and Rural Development and Panchayati Raj were stripped off their position during the 2016 cabinet shuffle and were given their current roles. Prakash Javadekar replaced Irani as the Minister for Human Resource and Development and Tomar was replaced by Piyush Goyal for an additional charge of Minister of Mines.

In her two-year tenure as the HRD Minister, Irani faced constant lashes for her policies and comments. In 2014, she was a major figure on scrapping off 2013 implemented FYUP in Delhi University colleges. According to Livemint, the same year a huge controversy sparked over her educational qualification as it was believed she presented fake educational certificates. She was also criticised for lewd comments on the suicide of JNU student Rohith Vermula.

Smriti Irani became the fourth I&B minister in the three years of the Modi government. Previously, Arun Jaitley and Prakash Javadekar held the portfolio before Naidu was made the minister in 2016.

Sources: Livemint, Indian Express

Volkswagen Finance appoints Patrik Riese as the new MD and CEO

On Monday, Volkswagen Finance Private Ltd, the financial branch of the Volkswagen Group in India, announced Patrik Riese as their new Managing Director and CEO. He replaced Andreas Kutzner, who took the position in June 2015 as reported by PTI.

Riese studied International Business and Marketing from the Business school at the University of Gothenburg. Previously, holding the position of the Managing Director of Volkswagen financial services in South Africa and Sweden, his career spans over 26 years in the automotive industry.

Volkswagen Finance Private Ltd is also responsible for catering operations along with other major automotive brands in India. Skoda Financial Services, Audi Financial Services are among the few companies. It also provides financial services to Porsche, Lamborghini, and Sacia in the country.

The company is set to launch their new cars in the upcoming months. Volkswagen Passant will be launched September 2017, with an estimated price of Rs 25.00 Lakhs. Similarly, the company will be launching Up (hatchback) and T-Roc (SUV), both in the month of October.


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