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MIDDAY NEWS

1400 HRS

24 March, 2017

THE HEADLINES,

  • Four private airlines bar Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad from flying by carriers for assaulting an Air India officer; Civil Aviation Minister says MPs  are not above law and they have to follow rules.
  • Uttar Pradesh Government asks Sugar mill owners to ensure payments of arrears to farmers within a month at any cost.
  • Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Thaawar Chand Gehlot dismisses opposition allegations that NDA government is against reservations.
  • Government says allowances and pensions are the rights of MPs and ex- MPs and Parliament has every right to decide on it. 
  • US House of Representatives to vote today on a new healthcare legislation brought in by President Donald Trump.

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Shiv Sena Member of Parliament Ravindra Gaikwad was today barred from flying by four private Indian carriers for assaulting an Air India officer. The Federation of Indian Airlines, which has Jet Airways, IndiGo, SpiceJet and GoAir as its members has decided to  blacklist Gaikwad who admitted to his unruly behaviour with Air Indian staffer. The incident took place on Thursday morning inside Air India's Pune- Delhi flight AI 852, when the aircraft landed in Delhi. Gaikwad ​refused to disembark despite attempts of persuading him to do so. Meanwhile, taking serious note of Gaikwad’s behavior Shiv Sena has asked him to give an explanation over the issue. Shivsena President Uddhav Thackeray also sought AIR INDIA’s version over the incident.

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Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju today said the MPs  are not above the law and they have to follow the law of the land. Reacting to Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad’s alleged thrashing of an Air India employee, Mr. Gajapathi Raju said action will be taken in the matter. He said it was an unfortunate incident and it should not have happened. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said that MPs represent people and therefore they should behave properly in public. Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said the incident occurred outside Parliament and she will take action only when there is a complaint in this regard.

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Uttar Pradesh Government has directed the Sugar mill owners to ensure payments of arrears to Sugar cane farmers for the previous and current crushing seasons within a month at any cost. State Government has said that if millers fail to do so, strict actions will be taken against them. More from our correspondent:-

"Yogi Government has taken initiative as per BJP`s Sankalp Patra promises for making payments to sugarcane farmers. Party has assured the farmers during the elections that they will be paid within 14 days after purchase of their sugarcane by the millers. A total of 4160 crore rupees are pending as arrears for current crushing season at sugar mill owners for payment to sugarcane farmers. In view of Chief Minister Adityanath Yogi's priorities the Sugarcane Development Commissioner has issued fresh directions to the millers. Similarly a total of 223 crore rupees arrears are still not paid to thousands of sugarcane farmers for previous crushing Season of 2015-2016. Sunil Shukla, AIR News Lucknow."

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Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prashad Maurya today said that the anti-Romeo squads of policemen to protect women and to check eve teasing will bring a sense of security among the women of the state. Talking to media outside Parliament, Mr Maurya assured that no innocent person will be harassed or punished by such squads. He said, providing safety and security to the women in the state remains a priority for the Uttar Pradesh government.

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After Uttar Pradesh, Bihar government has now sought report from District Magistrates on illegal slaughterhouses operating in their respective districts despite a ban on unauthorised  slaughterhouses  in the state. The Animal Husbandry Minister Awadhes Kumar singh told AIR there is a committee in every district headed by the DM to monitor cattle slaughter. DMs have been instructed to submit a report on illegal slaughterhouses so that steps can be taken to stop such illegal activities.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi met BJP MPs from states like Gujarat, Rajasthan, Goa, Andaman and Nicobar and Daman and Diu at his residence in New Delhi today. Later, talking to media outside Parliament, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said, discussions were held on the strategy for 2019 general elections and the upcoming Assembly polls in Gujarat. Mr Kumar said events lined up for BJP foundation day as well as celebration to be held in view of Bhim Rao Ambedkar’s birth anniversary were also discussed.

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Telangana Legislative Assembly Speaker Madhusudhanachary today suspended the BJP members for the rest of the week for obstructing the proceedings of the House. Party floor Leader Kishan Reddy and Party Telangana President Dr. Lakshman were also among the five who were suspended.

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In the Rajya Sabha, Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Thaawar Chand Gehlot has dismissed opposition allegations that the NDA government is anti-reservations. He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has, a number of times, assured that the Central reservations for Backward Classes, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes will continue. Mr Gehlot described as historic the government’s decision to give Constitutional status to the National Commission for Backward Classes. He said this was pending for a long time.

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Government has asserted that the allowances and pensions are the rights of MPs and ex- MPs and Parliament has every right to decide on it.  Parliament Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said the rights and privileges of Parliament are sacrosanct. He was intervening in the matter raised by TMC MP Saugata Roy during Zero Hour in the Lok Sabha on Supreme Court’s notice to the Centre and the Election Commission. Members from different parties expressed concern over the issue. Mr. Kumar urged Speaker Sumitra Mahajan to look into the matter.

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Health Minister J P Nadda today said that the state governments should ensure a secure environment for doctors in the hospitals. Replying to supplementaries in the Lok Sabha during the Question Hour, he said that the state governments have been asked to provide security to doctors. Terming the strike of doctors in Maharashtra a serious issue, he said that the state government has been asked to take active steps on the issue.Mr. Nadda informed the House that the Centre is increasing health budget in a phased manner. He assured that the Centre will provide all possible help to the state governments in the expansion of health services.

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Minister of State for Health Anupriya Patel today said that Injectible contraceptive Medroxy Progesterone Acetate (MPA) will be rolled out in the country in a phased manner. Replying to  supplementaries during the Question Hour in the Lok Sabha, she said that the government has approved Injectible contraceptive for introduction recently under the National Family Programme. It is being introduced first from the government medical hospitals and district hospitals. She said that there are no long term impacts and serious side effects of Injectible MPA. The government had set up a Technical Resource Group which discussed the safety concerns in detail and recommended its inclusion in the National Programme.

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Government has said it will not conduct an audit on the impacts of demonetisation of high value currency notes. This was stated by Minister of State for Finance, Arjun Ram Meghwal in a written reply in the Lok Sabha today. He was asked whether the government proposes to conduct an audit on the impacts of demonetisation. In November last year, the government had demonetised  500 and 1000  rupees notes  to curb  black money, fake currency and corruption in the country.

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Budget session of Uttarakhand Assembly began today with the address of Governor KK Paul. In his address, the Governor  stressed on the issues which were incorporated in the vision document of the BJP presented at the time of going to State Assembly elections. More from our correspondent:-

"The Governor said that his government will provide corruption free governance and clean administration. For this Lokayukt will be appointed and special courts will be constituted to dispose of economic offences. Besides, a dedicated helpline will be started to register public complaints regarding corruption in the government. On the issue of the state capital, the Governor said his government will declare Gairsain as its summer capital with consensus after developing infrastructure facilities there. Emphasizing on the need to develop health services in the state, he said that the government will focus on providing these facilities particularly in the hill areas. He said that the government will give preference to production of cash crops such as fruits, vegetables and medicinal plants in the hill areas. Sanjeev Sundriyal, AIR News, Dehradun."

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In Himachal Pradesh, Border Road Organisation (BRO) has started its snow clearing operation on Manali-Leh National highway from Gulaba and Sissu in the tribal district of Lahaul-Spiti. BRO commander Lt. Col. Mayank Mehta said that most parts of the road are covered with several feet high snow. The BRO has set up mid-May as target to open this strategically important road. Our correspondent has filed this report:-

"The Border Road Organization every year clear snow from nearly 222 kilometres stretch up to Sarchu of Manali-Leh road crosses over from the Lahaul-Spiti district. This time the operation has been although delayed by nearly fortnight due to the inclement weather in past few days. BRO men begin their works on both sides of the road after traditional puja in Gulaba near Manali. In the freezing cold conditions the BRO men with their high morale are using snow cutter and other latest machinery to cut the ice wall. Shishu Sharma Shantal, AIR News, Shimla."

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Today is World Tuberculosis Day. This year’s theme is “Unite to End TB”. This year's focus is to increase awareness of the TB national response among patients and healthcare providers in order to strengthen the active surveillance of TB to improve diagnosis and treatment. More from our correspondent:-

"World Tuberculosis Day is observed on 24th March to commemorate the day in 1882 when Dr. Robert Koch discovered the TB bacillus.  Tuberculosis is one of the top 10 causes of death across the globe, ranking above HIV and malaria. According to the World Health Organization in 2015, there were over 1 crore new cases of TB worldwide. On the eve of World Tuberculosis (TB) Day, a candlelight vigil was organised at India Gate yesterday to pay tribute to the nearly 5 lakh lives lost due to the disease last year. Participants pledged to lent their complete support to achieve India's goal to eliminate TB by 2025. To tackle the critical problem of TB in the country, the Government will launch National Strategic Plan for TB Control which will pave the way for achieving the elimination goal. VASUNDHRA, AIR NEWS, DELHI"       

President, Pranab Mukherjee in a series of  tweet called upon all stakeholders to redouble their efforts for an early achievement of goal of TB elimination. He said that TB continues to be one of the major health challenges in India.

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At the stock markets, after a positive opening, the Sensex at the Bombay Stock Exchange remained firm, and had gained 106 points, or 0.4 percent, to 29,438 a short while ago. The Nifty at the National Stock Exchange had advanced 27 points, to 9,113. And at the for ex market, the rupee had appreciated 7 paise, to at 65.45 against the dollar in afternoon deals.

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US President Donald Trump has demanded a make-or-break vote today on a new health care legislation in the US House of Representatives. Speaker of the House of Representatives, Paul Ryan, told Republican lawmakers last night that negotiations are finished and Trump wants a vote on the American Health Care Act today. He said for seven and a half years the administration have been promising the American people that it will repeal and replace the broken "Obamacare" law because it is collapsing and it is failing families. The Republican bill would halt tax penalties against people who do not buy coverage and cut the federal-state Medicaid programme for low earners.

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The fourth and final cricket Test  between India and Australia will be played in Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, from tomorrow. The  series is level at 1-1 after the third test ended in a draw in Ranchi.  Both the teams have arrived  in the city.

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