Kennedy Centre Comic Vir Das’ ‘I Come – Latest news headlines

Comedian Vir Das urged people to “cheer for the country with hope, not hate”.

New Delhi:

Comic Vir Das’s viral “I come from two Indias” video, furiously debated on social media, has provoked a police complaint by a BJP leader. Aditya Jha, a spokesperson of the BJP in Delhi, has filed a complaint with the Delhi Police accusing Vir Das of belittling the country on foreign soil.

Mr Jha tweeted a video saying he “will not tolerate anyone insulting our nation in another country” and will fight for the arrest of Vir Das.

“I will take this fight to a decisive end. I want Vir Das to be arrested so that no one can malign the nation like this,” Mr Jha says, urging people to support his cause.

Vir Das on Monday posted a video filmed at his show at Washington’s Kennedy Centre. In a six-minute monologue, he describes two contrasting faces of the country and refers to many recent controversial topics in broad strokes.

“I come from an India that has the largest working population under 30 on the planet but still listens to 75-year-old leaders with 150-year-old ideas,” he says in the viral monologue.

Many shared his lines on Twitter. Vir Das was also trolled in equal measure.

As the video racked up tens of thousands of views, a short clip posted on Twitter generated much fire: “I come from an India where we worship women during the day and gang-rape them during the night.”

The 42-year-old stand-up comic last evening put out a clarification that he never intended to insult the nation, that his piece was a satire.

“The video is a satire about the duality of two very separate Indias that do different things. Like any nation has light and dark, good and evil within it. None of this is a secret. The video appeals for us to never forget that we are great. To never stop focusing on what makes us great. It ends in a gigantic patriotic round of applause for a country we all love, believe in, and are proud of. That there is more to our country than the headlines, a deep beauty. That”s the point of the video and the reason for the applause,” Vir Das said in his statement.

He urged people to “cheer for the country with hope, not hate” and asked his followers to not be misled by edited clips.

“Please do not be fooled by edited snippets. People cheer for India with hope, not hate. People clap for India with respect, not malice. I take pride in my country, and I carry that pride across the world,” he said.

Congress leader Kapil Sibal came out in his support on Twitter.

“Vir Das, None can doubt that there are two Indias. Just that we don’t want an Indian to tell the world about it. We are intolerant and hypocritical,” Mr Sibal wrote.

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Latest News Today – Centre Planning Follow Up Scheme On Urban

Centre is planning a follow up scheme to the existing urban rejuvenation mission

Centre is planning to bring in a follow up scheme to the existing Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT), as it covers only 60 per cent of the urban population and the Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry wants to extend its coverage to 100 per cent of the areas.

Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Puri in response to a question in Lok Sabha gave this information, saying that the Government is actively considering a follow up scheme for AMRUT which will cover all urban areas.

AMRUT, which was launched in June 2015 by the NDA government, is aimed at providing robust sewage system and tap water connection to each urban household. It also counts septage, storm water drainage management and sewerage treatment as its focus areas.

Mr Puri further informed the lower house during Question Hour that Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her budget statement had talked about a follow up to the AMRUT scheme.

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Latest News Today – Centre Released 600 Lakh Tonnes Of Food Grains During

Centre released 600 lakh tonnes of food grains under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana

Centre released around 600 lakh tonnes of food grains during the Coronavirus pandemic year 2020-21 and 2021-22 under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana (PMGKAY).

According to Ministry of Consumer Affairs data, out of the 600 lakh tonnes of food grains allotted to the scheme’s beneficiaries during the period, 400 lakh tonnes of stocks had been lifted by states till July 14, 2021.

The total stock of food grains in the Central Pool as on July 1, 2021 was 900 lakh tonnes, consisting of 603 lakh tonnes of wheat and 296 lakh tonnes of rice.

The PMGKAY had been initiated by the Government in March 2020 after the pandemic-induced nation-wide lockdown had been imposed and millions of migrant workers were forced to return to their native places.

The scheme was aimed at providing such displaced people and those in rural areas with free food grains.

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Latest News Today – Centre Singles Out Kerala For Covid Cases

State Health Minister Veena George had earlier this month defended the state’s Covid strategy.

New Delhi:

The Kerala government is not focusing on containing Covid, as a result of which up to 50 per cent of the new cases are being reported from that state, along with Maharashtra, Health Ministry sources have said.

“Kerala is not focusing enough on containment…They are focused more on mitigation process of treating cases than containment,” the source said. “Up to 50 per cent of new cases are coming from Kerala and Maharashtra. The fatalities are low because their health infrastructure is good.”

Kerala has been reporting a high number of infections for the past many weeks even as the overall numbers have been falling rapidly since the second wave peak across India. The southern state registered 22,129 new cases and 156 deaths today, with a test positivity rate of 12.35 per cent.

It has had to stop the vaccination drive as many of its districts, including capital Thiruvananthapuram, have run out of doses, state Health Minister Veena George said yesterday.

An increasing ‘R’ value, or Covid reproduction rate, in Kerala had earlier this month triggered concerns of a renewed wave, which could even fuel a national spike.

On July 10, Mr George had told NDTV that the continuing reportage of a large number of Covid infections in Kerala was part of the state’s strategy in fighting the pandemic and assured that this was no cause for alarm. 

Overall, infections have plateaued, she said, adding that a similar trend was seen in the first wave, too. She had termed the phenomenon “dragging the wave”.

Ms George, who recently replaced the much-lauded KK Shailaja in the role of the state Health Minister to the surprise of many, countered suspicions of slippage in caution. Despite a high share of susceptible persons in the state’s population, only 20 per cent or 21 per cent of them may have been infected till July 10, she had said.

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Latest News Today – Centre Introduces Bill To Help Pandemic-Hit Small

Government has introduced a bill to provide relief to pandemic hit small and medium enterprises

The Centre on Monday introduced a bill in Lok Sabha for providing a resolution process for financially stressed micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), especially those which have been affected by the Coronavirus pandemic.

The bill will amend the insolvency law and offer what is being termed, a pre-packaged resolution process for such small enterprises.

The proposed amendments would help notify the threshold of a default not exceeding Rs 1 crore for initiation of pre-packaged resolution process. The Centre has already prescribed the threshold of Rs 10 lakh for this purpose.

The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Bill, 2021, which was introduced by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, will replace the ordinance that came into effect on April 4, 2021 to provide relief for pandemic affected MSMEs.

The bill seeks to have a new chapter in the Code to facilitate pre-packaged insolvency resolution process for corporate persons that are MSMEs.

Under a pre-packaged process, main stakeholders such as creditors and shareholders come together to identify a prospective buyer and negotiate a resolution plan before approaching the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT). All resolution plans under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) need the tribunal’s approval. 

As per the bill’s objective, it aims to specify a minimum threshold of not more than Rs 1 crore for initiating pre-packaged insolvency resolution process as well as provisions for disposal of simultaneous applications for initiation of insolvency resolution process and pre-packaged insolvency resolution process, pending against the same corporate debtor.

There would be a penalty for fraudulent or malicious initiation of pre-packaged insolvency resolution process or with intent to defraud persons, and for fraudulent management of the corporate debtor during the process.

Further, punishment would be meted out for offences related to pre-packaged insolvency resolution process.

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Latest News Today – Centre Caps Trade Margin On Pulse Oximeter And 4 Other

Government has capped trade margin on essential medical devices like oximeters and nebulisers

More than 600 brands have seen huge reduction in prices after the Centre capped trade margins on five essential medical devices like pulse oximeter, blood pressure monitoring machine, nebuliser, digital thermometer and glucometer, on July 13, 2021. The trade margins have been capped at 70 per cent.

The reduction in prices of these essential items, which are extensively used in treatment of Coronavirus pandemic, will bring long term relief to people in general.

The highest reduction in prices by importers has been on pulse oximeters, blood pressure monitoring machines and nebulisers, the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilisers said in a statement.

The revised maximum retail price (MRP) effective from July 20, 2021 on all the brands and specifications has been provided to all the state drug controllers for strict monitoring and enforcement, it said further.

On July 13, 2021, the National Pharmaceuticals Pricing Authority (NPPA) had invoked extraordinary powers under the Paragraph 19 of DPCO, 2013, to put a cap on trade margin of the five medical devices.

The maximum downward revision has been reported by an imported brand of pulse oximeter, showing reduction of Rs 2,95,375 per unit, it added.

The downward revision of MRP has been reported by imported and domestic brands across all the categories, the ministry stated.

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Latest News Today – Centre Relaxes Stock Limits For Pulses

Centre has relaxed stock limits for pulses

Amid softening of pulses prices, the Centre on Monday relaxed its stock limits for millers and wholesalers. Importers too have been given the exemption, however all these stakeholders will continue to declare stocks on the web portal of the Department of Consumer Affairs, official sources said.

Also stock limits will be applicable only on Tur, Urad, Gram and Masur varieties of pulses till October 31, 2021, a statement issued by the department said. 

Now wholesalers will be able to maintain stock limit of up to 500 metric tonnes (provided there should not be more than 200 metric tonnes of one variety), for retailers, the stock limit will be 5 metric tonnes, and for millers the stock limits will be the last six months production or 50 per cent of annual installed capacity, whichever is higher, the statement said.

Official sources said that respective legal entities shall continue to declare their stocks on the department’s portal, and in case the stocks held by them are higher than the prescribed limits, then they shall bring it to the prescribed stock limits within 30 days of issue of this notification.

The Government had imposed stock limits on pulses on July 2, 2021. Earlier on May 14, it had asked all stakeholders to declare their stocks on the department’s website to prevent hoarding.

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Latest News Today – Centre Got Rs 94,181 Crore As Excise Duty Levy On

Centre has received record collections through excise duty levy on petrol and diesel

The Centre has collected Rs 94,181 crore through excise duty levy on petrol and diesel during the first quarter period of 2021-22.

Excise duty on petrol was hiked from Rs 19.98 per litre to Rs 32.9 in 2020-21 in order to take advantage of falling international crude prices, which had dipped sharply during the previous fiscal due to the Coronavirus pandemic which had erupted during that year.

This information was provided to the Lok Sabha through a written reply by Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Rameswar Teli to a slew of questions on rising petrol and diesel prices, which have crossed the Rs 100 mark in several states across the country.

Similarly the excise duty on diesel was also hiked to Rs 31.8 from Rs 15.83 a litre, according to the minister’s reply.

This led to excise collections on petrol and diesel jumping to Rs 3.35 lakh crore in 2020-21 (April 2020 to March 2021), from Rs 1.78 lakh crore a year back, he said.

Collections would have been higher but for fuel sales falling due to lockdown and other restrictions imposed to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, which muted economic activity and stalled mobility, the minister further added in the reply.

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‘Waterman’ backs Centre’s intervention | Hyderabad News | Live Newspaper Hyderabad

HYDERABAD: Water conservationist, Magsaysay and 2015 Stockholm Water Prize laureate Rajendra Singh on Friday supported the decision of the Union government to intervene in the water war between Telangana and AP.
He told TOI that Centre’s intervention was always necessary in such matters. “The Constitution too says that all such disputes should be resolved through legal network,” he said. “Our constitution asks Parliament to intervene when disputes persist between states.” He also welcomed the Centre’s move that the tribunals have the jurisdiction to preside over and resolve inter-state disputes. “The intervention through tribunals is very much justified,” Rajendra, known as the ‘Water man of India’, said. He said tribunals are part of judiciary and introducing intervention through tribunals was justified.
Senior counsel and Telangana state’s first advocate general K Ramakrishna Reddy said the Krishna and Godavari river water management tribunals were created as per sections 84 and 85 of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act for the purpose of resolving disputes between the two successor states of Telangana and AP. He said asking these tribunals to preside over the affairs of water distribution and power generation was not wrong.
On the Centre’s decision to entrust the river water issues, irrigation projects and power generation to these tribunals, Reddy said it was the mandate of the law. “The AP Reorganisation Act is not an ordinary piece of legislation. It was made in tune with Articles 2 and 3 of the Constitution. Its sections 84 and 85 ask both the states to resolve the disputes through the Centre and tribunals,” he said. He further said: “The notification issued by the central government in this regard is valid. The senior counsel said the Centre has got powers to do so under Article 262 of the Constitution.
Water conservationist Rajendra Singh welcomed the Centre’s move that the tribunals have the jurisdiction to preside over and resolve inter-state disputes

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Telangana moves NGT against Andhra Pradesh’s Seema project, | Live Newspaper Hyderabad

HYDERABAD: Upping the ante against the Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Project (RLIP) being ‘illegally’ constructed by Andhra Pradesh, Telangana on Monday filed a contempt petition in the National Green Tribunal (NGT) Chennai bench urging the tribunal to initiate action against the AP government for its wilful violation of NGT’s earlier orders.
Telangana also wrote a letter to the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) to hold a full board instead of a threemember committee to discuss all the issues pertaining to AP’s irrigation projects, water sharing and issues pertaining to Krishna river. It again urged the KRMB to convene a meeting after July 20 as its officials were busy with kharif season. The state government also dashed off a letter to the Union ministry of environment and forest (MoEF) on Monday, asking it to be ‘careful’ while considering giving environmental clearance (EC) to the RLIP during its meeting scheduled to be held on July 7.
Chief secretary Somesh Kumar filed the petition in the NGT, charging AP with violating the tribunal’s earlier orders on the RLIP. “Initiate action and pass appropriate orders under sections 26 and 28 of NGT Act, 2010, against the respondent (AP) for wilful violation of the October 29, 2020, order of the tribunal,” he urged the NGT in the petition. The petition also asked NGT to restrain AP from executing RLIP without seeking EC from Centre and Krishna River Management Board (KRMB). The CS made the MoEF, Union ministry of Jal Shakti, AP chief secretary and KRMB as respondents.
In its earlier order, the NGT had asked AP not to go ahead with the RLIP works without the EC and directed the KRMB in another order to inspect the project site. The NGT has also asked the tribunal to initiate action against the executing agency, SPML Infra, for taking up the works in violation of its orders. Telangana CM K Chandrasekhar Rao said the state would not keep quiet while stressing that the state would continue hydel power generation on Krishna projects. The CM also announced that Telangana would utilise 50 per cent of Krishna waters till final allocations are made by KRMB.
In his letter to the KRMB on Monday, Telangana special chief secretary (irrigation) Rajat Kumar said it was surprising that member-secretary of KRMB had mentioned issues raised by AP in the agenda at the July 9 meeting, but skirted several issues raised by Telangana.
He mentioned about five major issues which needed to be incorporated in the agenda. “Revision of the water sharing ratio of Krishna river waters for the current water year, steps to stop construction of ‘illegal’ RLIP and Rajolibanda Diversion Scheme right canal by AP immediately, steps to stop excess diversion by AP from Pothireddypadu head regulator and other projects outside the basin, revoking 20 per cent of total water drawn as usage towards drinking water supply and appropriate accounting of savings by Telangana out of water releases ordered by the KRMB,” Rajat Kumar added.

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