Saturday, February 25, 2017

Reports on India to be fastest growing economy

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IMF has said that the Indian economy is in fairly good shape, and it is likely to be less affected than other emerging economies if there is a further shock to the global economy.
Paul A Cashin, Assistant Director in the IMF’s Asia & Pacific Department, and mission chief of India, said this is because India has an inward domestically demand-oriented economy. The International Monetary Fund had, earlier this week, in its annual report, forecast India’s growth to slow to 6.6 per cent in the 2016-17 fiscal due to temporary disruptions caused by demonetisation.
But the IMF added that economic growth will bounce back to its expected growth of more than 8 per cent in the next few years. Cashin also said India is in a much better fiscal position than it was, and also much better in terms of its monetary framework and monetary policy.
International rating agency Moody’s Investors Service has predicted that India will be the fastest growing economy among G-20 countries clocking a 7(point)1 per cent growth in year 2017.
In the report titled ‘Modest Acceleration in the Global Economy, Moody said, Indian economy will be the fastest growing among the G-20 nations, though it slowed down in the fourth quarter of 2016 because of the demonetisation.
Moody also said, the continuing cyclical recovery in global economic activity with growth in G-20 countries picking up modestly to 3 per cent in 2017 and 2018 from 2.6 per cent in 2016.
The rating aganecy also said, that there is a high risk of a significant protectionist shift in US trade policy and could inflict lasting damage to the global economy.
Commenting on Asia, the agency said, China’s economy stabilised around the official growth target of 6.7 per cent in 2016 but will likely continue to decelerate to 6.3 per cent and 6 per cent in 2017 and 2018.
Foreign direct investment in the country grew 18 per cent in 2016, to 46 billion dollars, according to data released by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion.
The sectors which attracted the highest foreign inflows include services, telecom, trading, computer hardware and software, and automobiles. The bulk of FDI came in from Singapore, Mauritius, the Netherlands and Japan.

5th phase of Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections ends

Feb 25
Uttar Pradesh, campaigning for the fifth phase of Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls for 51 seats spread over 11 districts will come to a close at 5 pm today, polling for which will take place on Monday, 27 February. The districts going to polls in this phase are Balrampur, Gonda, Faizabad, Ambedkar Nagar, Bahraich, Shravasti, Siddharth Nagar, Basti, Sant Kabir Nagar, Amethi, and Sultanpur.
The election for Alapur constituency in Ambedkar nagar district had been postponed by Poll authorities and here voting will be held on March 9th.
Our correspondent covering election at Indo-Nepal border in Siddharth Nagar reports that on the last day of campaigning, at one side where political parties are making their last ditch effort to woo the voters in favour of their party and candidates, at the same time Poll authorities and institutions are trying to aware voters for franchise and maximum Poll percentage.
Various voter awareness programmes were conducted in Indo-Nepal bordering districts Siddharth Nagar, Balrampur, Shrawasti and Behraich. The slogans like “Pahle matdaan, Fir Jalpaan” were heard reverberating across the birth place of Lord Buddha.
The voters who are residing in Nepal have started reaching their places here before the Indo-Nepal borders are sealed for election. Meanwhile training for poll personnel to be put on duty is completed. Authorities are seen bent upon for free ,fair and peaceful poll.
BJP president Amit Shah said that wind is flowing in favour of his party, which is visible in the ongoing assembly elections.
Addressing an election rally in Ambedakar Nagar in Uttar Pradesh today, he said his government will carry out development works without discrimination on the basis of cast and creed. He alleged that samajwadi party government discriminate works on the line of caste and religion. He appealed people to cast their votes in support of BJP to bring change in the state.
Mr. Shah, while attacking Samajwadi government said, they did nothing for the farmers and assured the people that the BJP government will solve farmers’ problems in the state. He said, loans of small and marginal farmers will be waived off immediately after BJP forms government in the state.
The BJP president reiterated that the dues of sugarcane farmers will be paid up within 14 days. Mr. Shah said central government has earmarked budget of one thousand corer rupees for development of eastern UP only.
Samajwadi Party leader and Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has sharply criticised the BJP. He said that BJP leaders are engaged in only making false promises and misguiding people.
Uttar Pradesh, Samajwadi Party President and Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav said, Mr Narendra Modi has put people in distress after demonetisation. Addressing a poll meeting at Chilhia of Shohratgarh assembly of Siddharth Nagar district today, he said there is no white and black momey, but it is transaction that becomes legal and illegal.
He dared Mr Modi for debate on Note ban issue. Mr Akhilesh Yadav dubbed Mr Modi as a lier and alleged him for not fulfilling his promises. Enumerating his schemes, he said that his government is committed for farmers and poors. He alleged that BSP is helping BJP to stop SP.
Mr Akhilesh Yadav will hold three poll meetings at Itwa and Dumariaganj in the district.
Several senior leaders of BJP and Apana Dal including Union Ministers Rajnath Singh Smriti Jubin Irani, Uma Bharati, Kalraj Misra, Sadhwi Niranjan Jyoti, Anupriya Patel and State unit president of Party Keshaw Prasad Maurya will be addressing rallies in different poll bound areas.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi will be addressing public meetings today at Baharaich, Gonda and Sultanpur. BSP supremo Mayawati will be addressing rallies at Deoria and Maharajganj. Sunil Shukla, AIR News Lucknow.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that country’s progress is incomplete without the development of North East. Hence, this region should be central to our focus.
He said, development and unity of Manipur is the main aim of his party. He promised, there will be no blockade in the state under BJP rule. Addressing an election rally in State’s Imphal West district today, he said, Manipur government is not interested in implementing central schemes. He said, Congress has not done anything for the State during last 15 years.
Mr Modi called upon electorate to give BJP a chance to serve them. He said, his doors are open for all. Pointing towards over 2.5 times more power shortage in Manipur in comparison with the national average, he promised, whatever was not done in last 15 years will be done in 15 months.

National day of Estonia

President of India’s message on the eve of national day of Estonia
The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee has extended his greetings and felicitations to the Government and people of the Republic of Estonia on the eve of theirNational Day (February 24, 2017).
In a message to Her Excellency Ms. Kersti Kaljulaid, the President of the Republic of Estonia, the President has said, “On behalf of the Government and people of India and on my own behalf, it gives me great pleasure to extend warm greetings and felicitations to Your Excellency and the people of the Republic of Estonia on the occasion of your National Day.
Relations between India and Estonia have always been warm and friendly. It is my firm belief that our ties will continue to strengthen and expand to the mutual benefit of our peoples in the years to come.
I would also like to take this opportunity to convey my best wishes for Your Excellency’s good health and well-being and for the continued progress and prosperity of the friendly people of the Republic of Estonia”.

Russia to veto sanctions on Syria over chemical weapons

Russia is ready to veto a draft resolution calling for sanctions against Syria over the alleged use of chemical weapons on civilians, Vladimir Safronkov, Russia’s deputy UN envoy, said after the document was discussed at the Security Council. “We will veto it,” Safronkov said, adding that the document put together by US, UK and France “contradicts the fundamental principle of presumption of innocence before the investigation is over.” The draft resolution seeks to blacklist 11 Syrian military commanders and officials and 10 government and related entities involved in the development and production of chemical weapons. Earlier, two diplomats told Reuters the resolution could be put up for a vote as early as next week.


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By the time Rahul Gandhi matures, Congress will be as good as dead

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China for the first time became Germany’s most important trading partner in 2016, overtaking the United States, which fell back to third place behind France, data showed on Friday. German imports from and exports to China rose to 170 billion euros ($180 billion) last year, Federal Statistics Office figures reviewed by Reuters showed. German Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel has suggested that the European Union should refocus its economic policy toward Asia, should the Trump administration pursue protectionism.
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French right-wing presidential candidate Marine Le Pen refused to attend a summons for questioning by police last Wednesday, her lawyer, Rodolphe Bosselut, told Reuters. Earlier, her chief of staff, Catherine Griset, was put under formal investigation in a probe into the alleged misuse of EU money. Bosselut said Le Pen learned of the police summons on February 21 after returning from her Lebanese visit. “She believes that there is a risk that justice is being used as a tool in the election campaign,” Bosselut said. “She will attend any summons after the elections.” 
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Jordanian F-16 crashes in Saudi Arabia


Friday, February 24, 2017

BSF to Delhi HC -Allegation of poor quality false

Border Security Force (BSF) told the Delhi High Court that the allegation of one of its jawans on social media regarding poor quality food being served to its troopers posted along the LoC was false as no complaint was ever made.
On thursday, in an affidavit filed by the BSF said, that soon after the video went viral on social media, senior officials visited the concerned battalion, but no complaint regarding poor food was brought to their notice.
Brushing aside allegations levelled by the Jawan, the BSF said a very transparent system was in place to ensure quality diet for the troopers since their health and safety is a prime responsibility. It also said, a detailed Staff Court of Inquiry has been ordered to enquire into the allegations made by the jawan through video and same has been concluded and further action will be taken in accordance with the law.
The BSF response came in the backdrop of a PIL seeking direction to MHA to submit a status report with respect quality of food supplied to all paramilitary forces in India.

Jaitley leaves for UK

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today left for London to represent the Indian government at a historic reception hosted by Queen Elizabeth II to launch the UK-India Year of Culture 2017. Bilateral talks with Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond are among the ministerial meetings on Jaitley’s agenda, during which a wide range of issues will be discussed. The extradition of embattled liquor baron, Vijay Mallya, from the UK to India may be among the topics that come up during the discussions. Mr Jaitley will also hold a series of meetings with UK-based investors and CEOs during the five-day visit.
On Sunday the Finance Minister will be the chief guest at a reception organised by the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, British Council and High Commission of India to celebrate UK India Year of Culture. Mr Jaitley will then attend the market opening ceremony of the London Stock Exchange on February 27 followed by a round-table with investors, issuers of Masala Bonds and tech experts, among others. He will then address CEOs and senior business leaders from the India-UK sphere at an event.

Phase 5 Uttar Pradesh Analysis of Candidates

Uttar Pradesh, canvassing for fifth phase of assembly elections is in full swing. Star campaigners from all major political parties have very hectic schedule today in most of the poll bound districts. A total of 52 constituencies spread over 11 districts of Tarai and eastern regions of the state will go to poll on February 27.
Districts covered in this phase are Amethi, Sultanpur, Faizabad, Ambedkarnagar, Baharaich, Shravasti, Balrampur, Gonda, Basti, Siddharthnagar and Sant Kabir. A total of 618 candidates including 45 women are in the fray.
Our correspondent reports that with only two days are left for campaigning, all major political parties have put their maximum strengths to woo the voters. Rallies and public meetings are being addressed today by the leaders of different political parties.
The BJP has accused Samajwadi Party for weakening Lokayukta and other institutions meant to check corruption. Samajwadi Party President and Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav said in Faizabad that BJP was trying to ignore the issue of development in the campaigning. BJP leader and Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be addressing his party’s Parivartan rally today at Gonda district. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi will be addressing rallies at Baharaich, Basti and Balrampur districts.
BJP president Amit Shah will address public meetings at Azamgarh, Mau and Gorakhpur districts.
BJP has expelled its 18 leaders and workers from Allahabad, Kaushambi, Ballia, Azamgarh Mau Basti and Deoria districts for their anti party activities.
The Election Commission has replaced district magistrates of three districts of Rampur, Jaunpur and Hamirpur. The Commission had received complaints against present incumbents about biased and partial working.
From: ADR India on Fri, 24 Feb 2017 13:02:23 Add to address bookTo: You & 2 others | See Details
Dear Friends,
The Uttar Pradesh Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) have analysed the self-sworn affidavits of 612 out 617 candidates from 75 political parties, including 6 national parties, 4 state parties, 65 unrecognized parties and 220 independent candidates, who are contesting in the fifth phase of Uttar Pradesh Assembly Elections to be held on 27Th February, 2017 The details of candidates who have not been analysed are given below:

For Full Reports in Hindi and English click here:

Criminal Background

  • Candidates with Criminal Cases: Out of 612 candidates analyzed, 117 (19%) candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves.
  • Candidates with Serious Criminal Cases: 96 (16%) candidates have declared serious criminal cases, including cases related to murder, attempt to murder, kidnapping, crimes against women etc.
  • Candidates with cases related to murder9 candidates have declared cases related to murder (Indian Penal Code Section-302).
  • Candidates with cases related to Attempt to Murder: 24 candidates have declared cases related to attempt to murder (Indian Penal Code Section-307).
  • Candidates with cases related to Crimes against Women: candidates have declared cases like assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty (Indian Penal Code Section-354), rape (IPC Section-376) and husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty (IPC Section-498A).
  • Candidates with cases related to Kidnapping: candidates have declared cases related to kidnapping for ransom, etc. (Indian Penal Code Section- 364, 365).
  • Party wise Candidates with Criminal Cases: 21(41%) out of 51 candidates from Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP)23 (45%) out of 51 candidates from Bahujan Samaj Party(BSP)8 (27%) out of 30 candidates from Rashtriya Lok Dal(RLD),17(41%) out of 42 candidates from Samajwadi Party ( SP),3(21%) out of 14 candidates from Indian National Congress(INC), and 19(9%) out of 220 Independent candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits.
  • Party wise Candidates with Serious Criminal Cases19(37%) out of 51 candidates from BSP, 14 (28%) out of 51 candidates from BJP, 7 (23%) out of 30 candidates from RLD, 12(29%) out of 42 candidates from SP, 2 (14%) out of 14 candidates from INC and 17(8%) out of 220 Independent candidates have declared serious criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits.
  • Red Alert Constituencies*: There are 22 constituencies in the fifth phase of Uttar Pradesh assembly elections having 3 or more candidates with declared criminal cases. *Red Alert Constituencies are those which have 3 or more candidates with criminal cases contesting elections.

Financial Background

  • Share of wealth among candidates : The share of wealth amongst the candidates contesting in the fifth phase of assembly elections Uttar Pradesh is as follows:
Value of assets (Rs.)No. of candidatesPercentage of Candidates
Rs.5 cr and above518%
Rs.2 crores to 5 crores8013%
Rs. 50 lakhs to 2 crores10217%
Rs.10 lakhs to 50 lakhs19532%
less than  Rs. 10 lakhs18430%
Table: Share of wealth amongst contesting candidates

  • High asset candidates: The 3 richest candidates contesting in  the fifth phase of the Uttar Pradesh  Assembly Elections are given below:
S.No.NameDistrictConstituencyParty NameMovable Assets (Rs)Immovable Assets (Rs)Total Assets (Rs)PAN Given
1Ajay Pratap SinghGONDACOLONELGANJBJP2,79,62,19246,26,00,00049,05,62,192
49 Crore+
2Ameeta SinghAMETHIAMETHIINC8,60,81,63328,16,50,00036,77,31,633
36 Crore+
3Mayankeshwar Sharan SinghAMETHITILOIBJP4,31,70,45428,39,59,00032,71,29,454
32 Crore+
Table: Top three candidates with highest declared assets

  • Crorepati Candidates: Out of the 612 candidates, 168 (27%) are crorepatis.
  • Party wise Crorepati Candidates: 43(84%) out of 51 candidates from BSP, 38(75%) out of 51 candidates from BJP, 32 (76%) out of 42 candidates from SP, 7(50%)out of 14 candidates from INC9(30%) out of 30 candidates from RLD and 14(6%) out of 220 Independent candidates have declared assets worth more than Rs. 1 crore.
  • Average assets: The average of assets per candidate contesting in the fifth phase of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly Elections is Rs 1.56 Crores.
  • Party wise average assets: Among major parties, the average assets per candidate for 14 INC candidates is Rs.4.40 crores, 51 BJP candidates is Rs 4.64 crores, 51 BSP candidates have average assets of Rs 4.16 crores, 42 SP candidates have average assets worth Rs 3.48 crores, 30 RLD candidates have average assets worth Rs 2.20 crores, and 220 Independent candidates have average assets of Rs. 44.96 lakhs.
  • Zero asset candidate:  There are no candidates who have declared zero assets in their self sworn affidavits.
  • Low asset candidates: The three candidates with lowest assets (excluding  candidate with zero asssets) are as follows:  
S.No.NameDistrictConstituencyParty NameMovable Assets (Rs)Immovable Assets (Rs)Total Assets (Rs)PAN Given
1Ramesh KumarAMBEDKAR NAGARALAPUR (SC)Uttar Pradesh Republican Party1,00001,000
1 Thou+
10 Thou+
3IndrajeetBAHRAICHBALHA (SC)IND12,000*012,000
12 Thou+
Table: Candidates with declared lowest assets
  * Candidates who have not provided the total in their affidavits, it has been calculated on the basis of details provided by them in the same
  • Candidates with high liabilities: The top three candidates with highest liabilities are as given below:
S.No.NameDistrictConstituencyParty NameTotal Assets(Rs)Liabilities (Rs)Disputed liabilities (Rs)PAN Given
1Sri Rakesh SrivastavBASTIBASTI SADARIND16,49,93,996
16 Crore+
6 Crore+
2Smt Rubab SayedaBAHRAICHBAHARAICHSP9,93,12,472
9 Crore+
5 Crore+
3Santosh KumarGONDACOLONELGANJBSP4,61,29,320
4 Crore+
4 Crore+
Table: Top three candidates with high liabilities
# disputed liabilities

  • Undeclared PAN: A total of 156 (25.5%) candidates have not declared their PAN details.
  • Candidates with high income as declared in the ITR*: Only 3 candidates have declared total annual income of more than Rs 50 lakhs. The top 3 candidates  with highest income are as given below:
S.No.NamePartyConstituencyDistrictTotal Asset (Rs)The financial year for which the last income tax return has been filed by candidateTotal income shown by candidate in ITR (Self+Spouse+Dependent) (Rs)Self income shown by candidate in ITR (Rs)
1RiteshBSPJALALPURAMBEDKAR NAGAR21,08,13,416  21 Crore+2015-201659,68,608  59 Lacs+59,68,608  59 Lacs+
2Yash Bhadra Singh MonuRLDISAULISULTANPUR11,39,14,141  11 Crore+2016-201754,76,170  54 Lacs+34,80,927  34 Lacs+
3Ameeta SinghINCAMETHIAMETHI36,77,31,633  36 Crore+2015-201651,45,290  51 Lacs+11,27,660  11 Lacs+
Table: Top 3 candidates with high income as declared in ITR
*Total income includes income of self, spouse and dependents

  • Candidates who have not declared Income Tax Details*: 365(60%) out of 612 candidates have not declared income tax details.
* Some candidates may be exempted from filing Income Tax Return
  • Candidates with high Assets who have not declared Income Tax Details*: 18 candidates with assets worth more than Rs. 1 crore have not declared Income Tax details. The top three candidates with highest assets who have not declared their IT returns are as given below:
S.No.NameDistrictConstituencyParty NameTotal Income (Rs)Total Assets (Rs)PAN GivenSelf Income
1Ajay Pratap SinghGONDACOLONELGANJBJP049,05,62,192 49 Crore+YITR not filed
2Mashhoor AlamSANT KABIR NAGARKHALILABADBSP015,75,68,642 15 Crore+YITR not filed
3Rustam Ali SaidaBAHRAICHBAHARAICHNCP06,00,23,220 6 Crore+YITR not filed
Table: Top three candidates with highest assets who have not declared ITR details
* Some candidates may be exempted from filing Income Tax Returns

Other Background Details
  • Education details of candidates: 266 (43%) candidates have declared their educational qualification to be between 5th and 12thwhile 285 (47%) candidates have declared having an educational qualification of graduate or above38 candidates have declared themselves to be just literates and 9 candidates have declared to be illiterate.
  • Age details of candidates: 429(70%) candidates have declared their age to be between 25 and 50 years while 181 (29.5%) candidates have declared their age to be between 51 and 80 yearscandidates have not disclosed their age details.
Gender details of candidates: 43 (7%) female candidates are contesting in fifth phase of the Uttar Pradesh assembly election this year.
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Navigating the Labyrinth: Perspectives on India’s Higher Education

Land rights, Land Acquisition, and Inclusive Development in India

CPR Land Rights Initiative and Chr. Michelsen Institute, Bergen are pleased to invite you to a conference on
Land rights, Land Acquisition, and Inclusive Development in India
Thursday and Friday, 2-3 March 2017, 9:30 a.m.
Conference Room II, India International Centre
India faces serious challenges in creating development processes that generate economic growth while being socially inclusive, ecologically sustainable, politically feasible, and in accordance with the Rule of Law. Equitable and efficient acquisition of land by the state for economic development projects, including infrastructure and industry, lies at the heart of these challenges. Simultaneously, securing constitutionally guaranteed land rights to the poorest and most vulnerable communities in India, especially the Scheduled Tribes, against the state and other dominant communities, has been considered crucial to their economic and social empowerment. Land is not only an important economic resource and source of livelihoods, it is also central to community identity, history and culture. Unsurprisingly then, throughout India, dispute over state acquisition of land that deprives people of their land rights spans various dimensions of economic, social, and political life. How do we mitigate this conflict?
The conference will feature the launch of the CPR Land Rights Initiative report on “Land Acquisition in India: A Review of Supreme Court cases from 1950-2016”, that attempts some preliminary answers to this question. Despite its persistent and polarising nature, the debate on land acquisition has been marked by a lack of systematic and comprehensive data in support of particular positions. Existing studies on land acquisition have tended to focus on particular issues, like compensation, or on particular conflicts, or have been otherwise limited in terms of geography and time. The CPR Land Rights Initiative Report is the first comprehensive country wide study of land acquisition disputes before the Supreme Court since India’s independence. The Report analyses these disputes along various metrics, such as public purpose, procedure for acquisition, compensation, pendency of claims, and tracks trends with respect to distribution of disputes across geography and time, and central and state laws. The Report findings will be discussed and debated by stakeholder representatives, including the government, lawyers, international development agencies, and civil society groups, as well as expert researchers from the fields of economics, sociology and political science, and law. Our previous seminar showcasing the first phase of this research can be accessed here.
The conference will also feature findings from an ongoing CPR and CMI research collaboration on “Land Rights and Inclusive Development in the Scheduled Areas”, that will describe the political economy of land rights in areas governed by the Fifth and Sixth Schedules of the Constitution, with particular focus on the states of Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Meghalaya. Representatives of community groups and civil society organisations will comment on these findings and highlight challenges, both individual and representative, faced by tribal populations in these four states.
A detailed agenda of the conference will be updated here. Please register at this link.