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Conversion Row Continues in Parliament

Opposition parties in the Parliament is in no mood to relent on conversion issue. In Rajya Sabha they sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s statement on the issue. PM was today present in the RS. Parliament witnessed repeated adjournments as united opposition pitched for statement of NaMo on the issue of increasing incidents of communal violence in India. Anand Sharma of INC also accused the government of showing ‘arrogance’ of not agreeing to the opposition’s demand. However, Arun Jaitley asserted that Rajnath Singh (Union Home Minister) will respond to the concerned discussion instead of the PM.

HRD Ministry Faces Heat on Celebrating Good Governance Day on Christmas

After Congress-led united opposition made scathed attack on the Union government on the reported HRD Ministry’s insistence on declaring the day of Christmas (December 25) as Good Governance Day, the concerned ministry has dug out a 1987-circular, issued by the then INC government to Navodaya Vidyalayas, that restricted students of residential schools from visiting homes during holidays. HRD Minister Smriti Irani has made it clear that students will not be required to visit school on Christmas to celebrate birthday of ex-PM atal Bihari Vajpayee.  

NaMo asks his MPs to Restrain themselves during Public Speeches

Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi and his government has been facing wrath of the united opposition due to unwanted words spoken during public speeches by many BJP MPs of the NDA government including Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti and Sakshi Maharaj. Stressing on the development agenda of the government, NaMo asked his MPs to restrain themselves from  making unwanted statements publicly. He specifically asked them to not cross the ‘Lakshman Rekha’ (forbidden line).   

PSU Banks have a Good Time at NSE

Early hours of the day witnessed significant gains by public sector banks due to increased market optimism after cabinet nod to dilute government stake in public sector banks to 52 per cent. At 9.55 am, CNX PSU Bank index jumped by 3 per cent. At NSE, stock of PSU banks (Syndicate Bank, State Bank of India, Union Bank of India, Canara Bank, Allahabad Bank, IDBI Bank, Punjab National Bank, and Andhra Bank) increased by 3 per cent. Stocks that increased by 2 per cent are of Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Indian Overseas Bank, and Oriental Bank of Commerce.

SoftBank Invests Heavily in eCommerce Space

SoftBank, technology major of Japan, is increasing its stake in the Indian eCommerce space steadily as India gears up to witness e-retail revolution. Recently, SoftBank invested $90 million in retail portal Housing.com, which takes the company’s total investment in eCommerce sector in India to $1 billion. Some of the websites where they have made significant investments include Snapdeal.com, ScoopWhoop, and Ola Cabs. Per report of Motilal Oswal Securities, Indian eCommerce space is expected to become $20 billion in 2015 from the current $11 Billion.

ADB pegs Indian Growth Story at 5.5 and 6.3 per cent in 2014 and 2015 Respectively

In 2014 outlook, Asian Development Bank expects India to grow at a rate of 5.5 per cent in 2014, due to renewed confidence of the international market on India because of Narendra Modi government’s reform initiatives. The report has also said that the Indian economy can grow at 6.3 per cent in 2015 if the current government keeps on the momentum of reform push.

Successful GSLV-3 Launch Brightens Hopes for Indian Manned Mission to Space

GSLV-3, the heaviest rocket, has been successfully launched by ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation) from Sriharikota on December 18. The successful launch has brightened hope for ISRO’s capability of making Indian manned mission to space a success. Mission of GSLV-3 was to take Crew module Atmospheric Re-Entry Experiment mission with it above atmosphere of earth and then send it back to earth’s surface. Per available information, ISRO is planning to send a manned spacecraft to space in the coming 5 years.

XPRIZE to be Launched in India in 2015

XPRIZE awards for tapping innovation potential will be launched in India along with Coca-Cola India support in the coming year. This is the first time XPRIZE will be launched in a country outside the USA. Per available information on the global innovation competition of India, prizes will be given for innovations in multiple fields including food and nutrition; waste management; energy; and water. Some of the renowned XPRIZE trustees are Larry Page, Arianna Huffington, Naveen Jain, Ratan Tata, and many more.

Dual SIM HTC Desire 620G is now Available in India

Dual SIM smartphone Desire 620G from HTC is now listed on Indian eCommerce sites at a price of Rs. 15,900. HTC Desire 620G is the 3G variant of 4G connectivity-enabled HTC Desire 620. Dual SIM HTC Desire 620G is powered by an Octa Core processor (MediaTek MT6592) clocked at a speed of 1.7GHz. The other specs are Android 4.4.4 KitKat OS, IPS HD display of 5 inch, dual camera (8MP rear and 5MP frontal), 1GB RAM, 8GB ROM, and 2100mAh battery (removable).

AIBA Bans Sarita Devi for 1 year; Government Writes for Ban Reversal

International Boxing Association banned ace Indian woman boxer Sarita Devi for 1 long year and also fined her 1000 Swiss Francs for defying Asian Games authority by not accepting her bronze medal during Incheon Asian Games on the grounds of controversial decision against her. Sources say that AIBA lessened the earlier threatened life ban on Sarita to a 1-year ban because of the support and persuasion from cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar and Union Sports Ministry. Sarbananda Sonowal, Sports Minister, said that he has written to the AIBA President for revoking imposed ban on Sarita.

India starts Badminton World Super Series with a Bang

Indian badminton team started its final campaign of World Super Series with twin wins. India’s Saina Nehwal (5th seeded) defeated China’s Shixian Wang, reigning Asian Games champion and former World No. 1, in women’s singles match by 21-17, 21-18. In the men’s group, 6th seeded Srikanth defeated Japan’s Kento Momota by 15-21 21-16 21-10.

BCCI Submits List of Administrators having Conflict of Interest in IPL to Supreme Court

Board of Control for Cricket has submitted a list of players as well as administrators to the apex court of India who have conflict of interest in IPL. This list includes names of some cricketing legends including Ravi Shastri, Sourav Ganguly, Sunil Gavaskar, Venkatesh Prasad, Lalchand Rajput, and Krishnamachari Srikkanth. This list was submitted by the BCCI today after a special SC bench asked the Indian cricket board to submit a list of players as well as officials of the board who have conflict of interest in T20 Champions League and IPL.

WB Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's Bday wishes to Shah Rukh Khan

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee wished Shah Rukh Khan on his birthday. On her official Facebook page she posted - "Today (Sunday) is the birthday of our very dear Shah Rukh Khan. We wish him best of happiness, prosperity, good health and success. Our best wishes also to all members of his family. Happy birthday Shah Rukh”. Shah Rukh Khan was in Kolkata on Oct 29 to celebrate the success of his lates movie 'Happy New Year'.

EC issues notice to Saif Ali Khan and Sharmila Tagore for violating model code of conduct

Notices to yesteryear Bollywood actress Sharmila Tagore, her son and actor Saif Ali Khan and many others have been issued by the Election Commission (EC) for organizing a marriage party in Gurgaon without taking prior permission for the same. They organized a marriage anniversary party of Saif Ali Khan with Kareena Kapoor at their palace in Pataudi. As per media report they violated model code of conduct. The loudspeakers were used without approval at the time of celebration that occurred on the night of Oct 15-16 and continued on night of Oct 16-17 as well. Accused have to reply by Oct 21 till 3 p.m.

Kamal Haasan thanked PM for making him a part of 'Clean India Campaign'

Veteran actor Kamal Haasan is one of the nine celebrities chosen by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his 'Clean India Campaign'. The actor has accepted the invitation and thanked PM Modi for recognizing his efforts. The actor picked his Facebook account to express solidarity. Apart from Kamal Haasan, PM Modi has also invited Salman Khan, Priyanka Chopra, cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, the entire cast of TV show ‘Tarak Mehta Ka Oolta Chashma’, Yoga Guru Ramdev Baba, Anil Ambani, Governor of Goa Mridula Sinha and Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor to be a part of the campaign.

Jayalalitha's Bail Extended by Supreme Court

AIADMK supremo J Jayalalitha today received a bail extension of 4 months, till April 2015, from Supreme Court. The apex court of India asked Karnataka High Court’s Chief Justice to form a special bench for deciding on the appeal of AIADMK Chief in three months time. SC also ordered hearing of the Rs 66.65 crore disproportionate assets case on a day-to-day basis. Jayalalitha is on bail since October 17.

Revenue Secretary on Extent of Black Money in Indian Economy

Shaktikanta Das, Revenue Secretary, recently revealed while addressing an audience in CII that the problem of black money circulating in the Indian economy is as grave as the quantum stashed in foreign locations. Das also revealed that Union Government has initiated the process of renegotiating tax treaties with other countries. SIT has already being formed by the central government for investigating Black Money list of HSBC Bank, Geneva. Per SIT report, out of 628 names, action can be initiated against 427 people only because 201 people are either untraceable or non-residents.

Aircel-Maxis Case: Chidambaram's Statement recorded by CBI

CBI has recorded statement of P Chidambaram, on the issue of Rs 3,500 crore Aircel-Maxis deal clearance by Foreign Investment Promotion Board back in 2006, when he was the Union Finance Minister. It is alleged that Chidambaram exceeded his foreign investment related deal sanctioning capability (limited up to Rs 600 crore) and sanctioned Rs 3,500 crore deal, which can only be sanctioned by Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (headed by the PM). K K Goel, prosecutor of CBI, has informed court that investigation is still going on Aircel-Maxis case.