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Major News and Events of 28 April 2015

What Happened on 28 April 2015


Afghan President starts his India Tour by holding Discussion with PM Modi

After having a detailed discussion with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, who is currently touring India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said in a joint press conference that India will support Afghanistan in all possible ways for the latter’s vision of achieving peace and stability. He also said that both the countries have shared interest in following Afghan-owned and Afghan-led process and that too within the framework of Afghanistan’s Constitution. Sushma Swaraj, External Affairs Minister, met Afghan President as both the countries prepare to hold delegation level talks. Ashraf Ghani will also meet President Pranab Mukherjee at Rashtrapati Bhavan later today.

Three-day Downward run at Indian Bourses Stops

Indian bourses ended a three-day long losing streak today as both BSE Sensex and NSE Nifty ended comfortably in green. The three sectors that gave impetus to the bourses to move up are power, automobile, and banking stocks. Giving comfort to lots of investors Nifty today closed above the crucial psychological support/resistance at 200 DMA of 8,257.44. With significant gains made by State Bank of India, Bharti Airtel, BPCL, Maruti Suzuki, and ICICI Bank, Nifty today closed at 8285.60, 71.80 points above previous close. BSE Sensex also made significant gains today as it closed at 27396.38, 219.39 points above previous close.

Furore over Delhi Law Minister's Alleged 'Fake' law Degree

Opposition parties in Delhi today attacked Aam Aadmi Party government by alleging that Delhi Law Minister Jitender Singh Tomar faked his law degree. The furore started after a Bihar based university claimed yesterday that there is no record of Tomar completing his law degree from the concerned university. While Congress asked Delhi CM to sack Tomar, Arvind Kejriwal asked his law minister to explain the serious allegations on him. Jitender Singh Tomar told media that he has every document to support his law degree and all the allegations against him are "false and bogus".

TMC sweeps West Bengal Civic Polls

Trinamool Congress has swept the West Bengal civic polls. Chief Minister of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee, told media that the result, announced today, is an answer to the slanderous campaign of the opposition parties. In Kolkata Municipal Corporation, TMC won 99 out of the 144 wards, followed by Left Front winning in 14 wards, BJP in 9, and INC in 7. While TMC won Chandannagar Corporation, Left Front halted the victory march of the ruling party in Siliguri corporation. Mamata slammed the general strike (called by Left Front, BJP, and Trade Unions such as CITU supported by INTUC on alleged poll rigging) call and threatened to take steps against those who want to ‘hinder progress of West Bengal’.   

IOC President says India is not Bidding for 2024 Olympic Games

Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), told media that India is not bidding to host the 2024 Olympic Games as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi did not propose it. During the meeting between Modi and Bach, PM stressed on the fact that India has maximum potential for growth of sports and expressed his intention of putting the country on sports map of the world. PM has requested IOC President of supporting India’s quest for becoming a hub of sports equipment manufacturing, sports technology, and sports infrastructure. During the discussion both agreed that sports is a great media for unifying societies and humanity.

Union Government Cancels Registrations of 8,975 NGOs for not Complying with Rules of the Land

The Union Government has come down heavily on around 9,000 NGOs for failing to comply with the rules of the land while accepting foreign funds. Registrations of 8,975 NGOs have been cancelled till now. A letter from Home Affairs ministry says that 10,343 NGOs didn’t submit annual returns since 2009-12. Even after sending notice and asking them to file returns by October 2014, most NGOs didn’t respond (except 229 NGOs). The decision comes just days after Narendra Modi government put under watch funds sent by Ford Foundation’s US wing to Indian NGOs. Home Ministry started keeping tab on the NGOs after an IB report claimed that foreign-funded NGOs are stalling India’s economic growth.

Arun Jaitley informs about Setting Up High Level Committee to Sort Out Pending Tax Matters

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, in an effort to make tax system in India transparent and predictable, has informed media about setting up a high-level committee to sort out taxation issues. The concerned committee will be empowered to explore the ways of resolving past tax issues. They will also have to prepare a report expeditiously. Jaitley also explained that the MAT notices sent by the revenue department to 68 FIIs were done on the rulings of Authority for Advance Rulings, a quasi judicial body. He also said that these rulings can’t override international treaties, thereby giving tacit support to the demand of FIIs.

USL starts Process to Remove Vijay Mallya from Chairman's Position

Board of United Spirits Ltd. has initiated the process of removing its non-executive chairman Vijay Mallya on the allegations of financial irregularities. In a letter to the stock exchanges, Anand Kripalu, who was named CEO of the company by Diageo, said that if Vijay Mallya refuses to resign, the shareholders will be recommended by the board to vote him out. Diageo recently told media that Mallya didn’t reveal USL loans to UB earlier and they came to know about them while finalising 2014 FY USL accounts. Even as Diageo says that contract with Mallya becomes void in case of defaults, Vijay Mallya said that the UK based company has to support his chairmanship because of the contractual obligations.

GST Bill to be Taken Up in Lok Sabha on Thursday

Constitution Amendment Bill for the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is likely to be taken up by the Union Government in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday. This means that the House will debate and vote on the bill on Thursday.  The preliminary list for the businesses to be taken up today in the lower house of parliament, put up on Lok Sabha website, doesn’t mention anything about the GST bill. The concerned bill was supposed to be taken up and passed in Lok Sabha yesterday. Instead the House concentrated on the demand for grants. Government is finding it tough to garner support from the opposition parties on the concerned bill and is currently in talks with BJD, TMC, and AIADMK to get it passed in the Rajya Sabha.

IB Issues Terror Attack Warning on Possible Aerial Strike in New Delhi with Unmanned Drones

Intelligence Bureau has issued a warning that terror groups – Jaish-e-Mohammed and Lashkar-e-Taiba – are planning to carry out aerial strikes in New Delhi with the help of unmanned drones. Delhi Police has asked all DCPs to track activities of the drone sellers and renters. District officials have been directed to prevent film units and private parties to fly unmanned aircrafts without proper verification and permission. Threat perception has been issued after an unmanned drone, carrying radioactive caesium contaminated sand, landed on Japanese PM’s office few days back.     

Land Bill to be placed in Parliament Next Week

With reconvened Budget Session coming to an end on 8 May in Lok Sabha and 13 May in Rajya Sabha, Narendra Modi government is likely to place the controversial land acquisition bill next week, sources reveal. The new bill that consists of nine amendments is believed to be crucial for the union government for acquiring land for infrastructural and industrial projects. With intensifying resistance on the land acquisition bill from the united opposition, government was forced to hold the bill (that was supposed to be placed this week) after unfortunate death of a farmer Gajendra Singh while attending an AAP rally against the controversial land bill.

Congress questions TRAI's Motive of Publishing Email Ids of over one Million Online Activists Vouching for Net Neutrality

Indian National Congress’s Gourav Gogoi during Zero Hour in Lok Sabha today criticised TRAI’s move of publishing email ids of more than one million online activists and called it a grave error. He also said that thorough investigation should be done behind the motive of publishing these ids, which he alleges will make them vulnerable to the whims of online criminals and hackers. During the question hour Gogoi also called the issue of net neutrality a “burning issue”, which he says was first raised in the parliament by Vice President of Congress, Rahul Gandhi. Giving notice for adjournment motion on the issue, he also asked the Union government whether they are in favour of common people or big corporate in the net neutrality issue.