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Major News and Events of 29 January 2015

What Happened on 29 January 2015


S Jaishankar becomes New Foreign Secretary from Today by Replacing Sujatha Singh

Union Government appointed S Jaishankar, Indian ambassador to the US till yesterday who was due to retire by January 31, as the new Foreign Secretary by removing Sujatha Singh, who still had around 7-months in her tenure, with immediate effect. Official sources say that she was earlier offered multiple honourable exits but she refused. Sources reveal that External Affairs minister Sushma Swaraj wanted to retain Singh, daughter of TV Rajeshwar (ex-IB chief), but Indian PM Narendra Modi wanted to bring in S Jaishankar who impressed PM during his US visit. After assuming office today at 9.30am, Jaishankar reportedly said that priorities of the government are his priorities. NaMo reportedly brought in Jaishankar for striking a balance between the US and China. However, INC’s Manish Tewari questioned the removal and asked whether it has any relation with Devyani Khobragade imbroglio.

Social Crusader Anna Hazare to Launch Agitation against Modi Government on 3 Demands

Anna Hazare told media today that he is preparing to launch continued agitation against the current Union Government as he believes the new government is also not serious on corruption issue. He also said that his agitation will be based on three major planks – Land Acquisition Act, press for implementation of Lokpal Act, and most importantly bring back black money stashed in overseas locations. He also said that he doesn’t need Arvind Kejriwal or Kiran Bedi by his side.

Delhi Assembly Election Decibel Rises

Arvind Kejriwal said during a campaign that Aam Aadmi Party will never compromise on corruption, crime, and character. He raised the political decibel by accusing opposition parties of hatching plots to denigrate image of AAP through baseless allegations. Kejriwal alleged today that opposition parties are trying to buy volunteers of AAP. Political sources revealed that BJP is raising its election pitch by bringing in 8 cabinet ministers and senior leaders including Shivraj Singh Chauhan, Sushma Swaraj, Manohar Lal Khattar, Navjot Singh Sidhu, and others for the campaign. Congress has also jumped the bandwagon by vouching for free housing scheme, right to shelter, and right to employment guarantee.

Coal India Stock price falls Prior to 10 per cent Stake Sale

Stock of Coal India saw a dramatic fall. At 2:05 pm IST, Coal India stock was trading at 371.85, a dip of 3.11 per cent from previous close of 383.80 at NSE. The stock opened at 365.00 and till 2 pm today, the highs and lows were 373.65 and 364.20 at NSE. Coal India is all set to sell its 10 per cent stake (at least 315.8 million stocks) tomorrow to raise estimated Rs 20,000 crore. Analysts believe that the price is in the red because the floor price of the stock will be decided on the basis of today’s close.

HDFC Bank Stock Gains after CCEA's Approval to Raise Rs. 10,000 Crore

Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved proposal of HDFC Bank to raise fund to the tune of Rs. 10,000 Crore through a sale of stocks to FIIs. Market responded positively and the stock price is up by more than 2 per cent. Till 2:21 pm IST, the stock was trading at 1080.25, a percentage increase of 2.07 per cent. HDFC Bank stock today opened at 1075.00 after it closed yesterday at 1058.35. Today’s high and low up to 2:21 PM was 1084.90 and 1061.00 respectively.

Tax Sop for Nokia by Tamil Nadu Government

Tamil Nadu government has brought down tax liability of Nokia India Pvt. Ltd. From a mammoth Rs. 2,400 crore VAT slapped earlier (by tax department for selling mobiles in domestic market instead of exporting) to a moderate Rs. 912 crore, a tax sop of 62 per cent. However, available reports point out that a penalty to the tune of Rs. 624.01 has been slapped on the company. When contacted Nokia refused any comment. However, Arvind Datar, senior counsel who is representing Nokia at HC, confirmed the report.

'Ghar Wapsi' in West Bengal; Togadia stresses on Deportation of Illegal Bangladeshi Muslims

100 Christian tribal people were converted to Hinduism in West Bengal’s Birbhum district. Jugal Kishore, leader of Viswa Hindu Parishad, told media that it was a reconversion program and a voluntary one. He reportedly said that VHP has announced different schemes including employment arrangement and provision of education to Hindu families. Praveen Togadia, VHP President, asked WB government to deport illegal Bangladeshi Muslims in a time bound manner. Derek O'Brien of TMC tweeted that the state government will take necessary action on ‘forceful conversion’.

India asks for Japan's help in Submarine Project of Rs 50,000 Crore

India has reportedly asked Japan government for participating in the submarine manufacturing project of Rs. 50,000 Crore. Japan has been invited by Indian administration in manufacturing 6 Stealth Sub-marines in India, as per 'Make in India' initiative. Sources reveal that India’s proposal of manufacturing Soryu-class submarines has been forwarded to Japan as the latter’s arms export embargo (self imposed) is coming to an end. Analysts believe that it is Indian PM’s strategic outreach to Japan for furthering Indo-Japan strategic partnership.

Last Rites of Martyr Colonel Munindra Nath Rai performed with Full State Honour

Colonel Munindra Nath Rai, who got killed while carrying out anti-terror operation in Pulwama’s Tral Area of J&K just after receiving Yudh Sena Medal on Republic Day, was cremated today in New Delhi with full state honour. Dalbir Singh Suhag, Chief General of Indian Army, said that Colonel Munindra Nath Rai was a brave soldier officer who led from the front, just like the other officers in Indian Army.

Twitter rolls out new Features; Shah Rukh Khan First Person to use Video Feature

New video and group chat features were rolled out by Twitter on a global scale just two days back for boosting its effort to increase one-to-many private messaging service of the renowned micro-blogging site. Jinen Kamdar, product director of Twitter said that group function will enable people to carry on chat conversion with followers, even with the ones who are not following. In fact, mobile video camera was first used by the superstar Shah Rukh Khan. He also gave thumbs up to Twitter’s latest initiative.

Xiaomi Mi3 Successor Mi4 Launched at Rs. 19,999

Chinese smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi has launched its latest flagship handset Mi4, successor of Mi3, in India at a price of Rs. 19,999 to capture a greater piece of the ever expanding smartphone market of India. It will be available exclusively on Flipkart. While registration of Xiaomi Mi4 started yesterday, it will be actually available for sale from February 10. This 4G-enabled smartphone is launched by Xiaomi after successfully launching two other mobiles - Mi Note Pro and Mi Note - last week.

Rahul hopes India to get Advantage if Wickets are Slow during World Cup

While commenting on the prospects of Indian cricket team in the upcoming World Cup tournament, yesteryear batsman and ‘wall’ of Indian cricket team Rahul Dravid told media today that India will be in an advantageous position if the wickets remain slow, thereby favouring the spinners, during the tournament to be played in both New Zealand and Australia. However, ‘Jammy’ also told reporters that it is going to be a challenging task for the Indians as the cricketing conditions are markedly different there.