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Major News and Events of 23 January 2013

What Happened on 23 January 2013


Life term for rapists, no death penalty, says Verma panel

 Justice J.S. Verma panel recommended life imprisonment for gang-rape, but the rapists will not get  death penalty even if the victim dies or is reduced to a vegetative state. The three-member committee submitted its report to Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde in 29 days after it was formed after the brutal gang-rape of a 23-year-old Delhi woman on Dec 16. The 631 page report states, "Gang-rape will entail a punishment of not less than 20 years, but which also may extend to life. Gang-rape followed by death shall be punished with life imprisonment." "Punishment for causing death or a persistent vegetative state shall be given rigorous imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than 20 years but may be for life also, which shall mean the rest of the person's life." Justice Verma also specified that the committee did not suggest death penalty for rapists because there were great amount of suggestions from the women organisations against it. Stalking, acid attacks and voyeurism will be regarded as a separate crimes, but suggested seven years for acid attacks as well as voyeurism, which includes creating MMS clips and passing it on to others. Rigorous punishment for trafficking for a term between seven years to 10 years was recommended. If anyone stalks  or attempts to contact a person repeatedly by any means then he may get a term of up to three year.Lowering the legally defined age of juvenile from 18 to 16 years was not recommended.  The committee had strong words for the administration, including the police as well as citizens, for not coming out to help the grievously wounded young woman and her friend who were thrown off the bus after the brutal gang-rape. Delhi Police also came under criticism for using batons on anti-rape protesters, delay in cognizance over disputes related to jurisdictions. Justice Verma stated that the government "with its might and resources should act fast" and submit the report before parliament in the coming budget session.

Dabwali fire: DAV school, hall owner to pay Rs.34 crore

The Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday that the managing committee of Haryana's Mandi Dabwali-based DAV Public School and a marriage hall will have to pay Rs.34 crore, along with interest, as compensation to victims of the 1995 fire tragedy which killed 446 people. The apex court dismissed the appeal by the schools' managing committee. The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Nov 9, 2009 had increased the compensation to Rs.34 crore plus six percent interest to compensate for the delay in payment. The Justice T.P. Garg Commission that  inquired into the tragedy had  earlier awarded Rs.18 crore compensation to the victims' kin. This tragedy which started when a synthetic tent caught fire after an electric short-circuit killed as many as 446 people, including 230 children. 

Bharti Airtel reduces promotional benefits and free minutes

Telecom major Bharti Airtel announced that the promotional benefits and free minutes which the users enjoy while maintaining the headline tariff. This has been done in most circles on both acquisition and existing usage. The company has informed there will not be any change in the headline tariff and there would be continued investments in network, technology, customer experience and other value added services. This has been done due to increase in costs. This announcement spurred the company's scrip at the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) soar by 3.80 percent or 13.35 points at Rs.365 from its previous close of Rs.351.65.

Indian animation industry way behind the race

The $2 billion Indian film industry,which is regarded as one of the largest in the world, still regards animation as an orphaned child. The Indian animation industry is worth of $350 million and but still lags behind because of the size of our companies and the absence of creative storytellers, market intelligence and writers as per by Rudra Masta, CEO RME. His company is popular for making Indian animation television series "Little Pandavas", "Baba" and "Garuda". The turnover of most successful Indian animation companies with various business models is as low as Rs.300 crore (over $55,000,000). Absence of good storytellers like John Lasseter, producers who have market expertise and standard like Walt Disney and writers with good grip over animation storytelling techniques are the reasons why Indian animation is a distant dream. Nikhil Advani's "Delhi Safari" was the only known film from the genre that was released last year.

India win 4th ODI and series 3-1

India won over England by five wickets in the fourth One-Day International (ODI) to take a 3-1 lead in the five-match series at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium on Wednesday. England batting first after they lost the toss made 257/7 in the 50 overs, which India chased down in 47.3 overs. Suresh Raina was the top scorer with an unbeaten 89 off 79 balls. Rohit Sharma finally met the expectations and scored 83 runs. Even though Captain Alastair Cook made 76 and Kevin Pietersen also scored the same it did not prove to be enough for the visitors, who were outplayed in the series. This win was much needed for India, who were under pressure after losing to England in the Test matches, and to Pakistan in a short one-day series. The final game of the series will be played at Dharamsala in Himachal Pradesh on Sunday.

Is Google's search business struggling?

Although Google is struggling to meet consumers as they shift to mobile devices, the question remains whether Google is moving at that pace or not to sync with the pace. In its announcement of its fourth-quarter earnings, investors looked closely for positive signals from Google in the evolution to a mobile world but were discouraged. The cost per click paid to Google by the advertisers decreased 6 per cent from last quarter and fell for the fifth consecutive quarter. It has been falling because advertisers pay very less for mobile ads and more people utilize Google search on their mobile devices and less on their desktop computer. Though some indications are there that Google is making progress in solving the mobile challenge. The price for clicks on mobile ads increased 2 per cent from last quarter.