Metrovaartha http://www.metrovaartha.com/ en-us Mon, 23 May 2022 00:00:00 +0530 Army reaches out to families of killed, surrendered militants in J-K's Chenab Valley https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65702/army-reaches-out-to-families-of-killed--surrendered-militants-in-j-k-s-chenab-valley https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65702/army-reaches-out-to-families-of-killed--surrendered-militants-in-j-k-s-chenab-valley Mon, 23 May 2022 20:33:49 +0530 ]]>Having controlled militancy in the Chenab Valley for the last 15 years, the Army on Monday reached out to the families of slain and surrendered militants there to address their grievances. Jammu | Having controlled militancy in the Chenab Valley for the last 15 years, the Army on Monday reached out to the families of slain and surrendered militants there to address their grievances, a defence spokesman said.
Chenab Valley, comprising Doda, Kishtwar and Ramban districts of Jammu region, is an evolving cultural, educational and tourism hub of the union territory. The valley was severely affected by militancy from 1990 to 2007.
"Although the 'Awam' (people) by and large does not favour bloodshed and separatist politics, due to inadequate employment opportunities and lack of awareness amongst the local youth, they are vulnerable to the lures of the inimical and anti-national elements," the spokesman said.
In order to look into the problems being faced by the surrendered militants and the families of those killed, and to monitor their rehabilitation and reformation efforts, the Army organised a meeting at Gundoh in Doda, he said.
"The event is also seen as an appropriate forum to interact with surrendered militants, their families and families of killed militants and provide them the required guidance and assistance in their rehabilitation and reformation efforts," he added.
He said 14 surrendered militants and families of slain terrorists attended the event from Gundoh and surrounding villages.
The spokesman said similar meetings were organised at Patnazi, Thathri, Shergwari, Kishtwar and Gahan in nearby Kishtwar district.
"During the course of interaction, initiatives being undertaken for development of the region and problems being faced by them were discussed and solutions were sought," he said.
Representatives from the Army also apprised them about various welfare and financial schemes launched by the Indian Armed Forces, and the union territory and central governments, he said.
"The meet was well-received and they greatly appreciated and applauded the support provided by the Indian Army in all spheres," the spokesman said.

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NCPCR seeks FIR over child raising provocative slogans during political rally in Kerala https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65701/ncpcr-seeks-fir-over-child-raising-provocative-slogans-during-political-rally-in-kerala https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65701/ncpcr-seeks-fir-over-child-raising-provocative-slogans-during-political-rally-in-kerala Mon, 23 May 2022 20:20:39 +0530 ]]>A short video of a boy sitting on the shoulder of a person during the "Save the Republic" rally held by the Popular Front of India (PFI) in Alappuzha on May 21 and raising allegedly provocative slogans has gone viral on social media. New Delhi | The apex child rights body NCPCR on Monday sought registration of an FIR against those responsible for allegedly letting a child raise provocative slogans during a political rally in Kerala.
A short video of a boy sitting on the shoulder of a person during the "Save the Republic" rally held by the Popular Front of India (PFI) in Alappuzha on May 21 and raising allegedly provocative slogans has gone viral on social media.
In a letter to the Kerala Police chief, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) said it has received a complaint over the child shouting slogans in Malayalam "in the sense of provocatively killing".
"The flag of Popular Front of India (PFI) is clearly seen in the video. The complainant further alleged that even after this video is spread in society, Kerala Police is not taking any action against the parents of the kid and the PFI...," the NCPCR said.
It further alleged that the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) and the PFI are using kids like this to spread hated, enmity and communal violence in the community.
Noting that the use of children in such “anti-national” activities appears to be violation of Section 75 and Section 83 of the Juvenile Justice Act-2015, the commission said it deems it appropriate to take cognisance.
"Therefore, in view of the sensitivity of the matter, it is requested that your good offices may kindly look into the matter and initiate necessary inquiry to ensure the welfare and safety of children, by lodging an FIR at the first instance, under Juvenile Justice Act, 2015 and relevant sections of IPC,” the NCPCR wrote to the Director General of Police (DGP).
The commission also sought from the Kerala Police an action taken report, along with a detailed fact-finding enquiry report, within seven days of receipt of this letter.
The Kerala Police on Monday said it has launched a preliminary investigation into the matter.

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Scientist with Electronics and IT ministry dies after jumping-off from 7th floor of Shastri Bhavan https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65700/scientist-with-electronics-and-it-ministry-dies-after-jumping-off-from-7th-floor-of-shastri-bhavan https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65700/scientist-with-electronics-and-it-ministry-dies-after-jumping-off-from-7th-floor-of-shastri-bhavan Mon, 23 May 2022 19:20:50 +0530 ]]>The man has been identified as Rajesh Mallik, a resident of Peeragarhi in west Delhi, they said, adding that the body was found in front of gate number two of Shastri Bhawan which houses several Union government ministries. New Delhi | A 55-year-old scientist working with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology died after allegedly jumping-off from the seventh floor of the Shastri Bhawan in central Delhi on Monday, police said.
The man has been identified as Rajesh Mallik, a resident of Peeragarhi in west Delhi, they said, adding that the body was found in front of gate number two of Shastri Bhawan which houses several Union government ministries.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (New Delhi) Amrutha Guguloth said, "Information was received regarding a person who had jumped from the Shastri Bhawan. When the local police reached at the spot, the man was identified as Rakesh Mallik." "A team of officers from the Parliament street police station and a crime team with ambulance reached the spot. Further enquiry is underway and legal action is being taken," the DCP added.

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Monkeypox likely spread by sex at 2 raves in Europe  https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65699/monkeypox-likely-spread-by-sex-at-2-raves-in-europe- https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65699/monkeypox-likely-spread-by-sex-at-2-raves-in-europe- Mon, 23 May 2022 19:18:30 +0530 ]]>A leading adviser to the World Health Organization described the unprecedented outbreak of the rare disease monkeypox in developed countries as “a random event” that might be explained by risky sexual behaviour at two recent mass events in Europe. London | A leading adviser to the World Health Organization described the unprecedented outbreak of the rare disease monkeypox in developed countries as “a random event” that might be explained by risky sexual behaviour at two recent mass events in Europe.
In an interview with The Associated Press, Dr David Heymann, who formerly headed WHO's emergencies department, said the leading theory to explain the spread of the disease was sexual transmission among gay and bisexual men at two raves held in Spain and Belgium. Monkeypox has not previously triggered widespread outbreaks beyond Africa, where it is endemic in animals.
“We know monkeypox can spread when there is close contact with the lesions of someone who is infected, and it looks like sexual contact has now amplified that transmission,” said Heymann.
That marks a significant departure from the disease's typical pattern of spread in central and western Africa, where people are mainly infected by animals like wild rodents and primates and outbreaks have not spilled across borders.
To date, WHO has recorded more than 90 cases of monkeypox in a dozen countries including Britain, Spain, Israel, France, Switzerland, the US and Australia.
Madrid's senior health official said on Monday that the Spanish capital has recorded 30 confirmed cases so far. Enrique Ruiz Escudero said authorities are investigating possible links between a recent Gay Pride event in the Canary Islands, which drew some 80,000 people, and cases at a Madrid sauna.
Heymann chaired an urgent meeting of WHO's advisory group on infectious disease threats on Friday to assess the ongoing epidemic and said there was no evidence to suggest that monkeypox might have mutated into a more infectious form.
Monkeypox typically causes fever, chills, rash, and lesions on the face or genitals. It can be spread through close contact with an infected person or their clothing or bedsheets, but sexual transmission has not yet been documented. Most people recover from the disease within several weeks without requiring hospitalisation. Vaccines against smallpox, a related disease, are also effective in preventing monkeypox and some antiviral drugs are being developed.
In recent years, the disease has been fatal in up to 6% of infections, but no deaths have been reported among the current cases. WHO said confirmed cases have so far been the less severe West African group of monkeypox viruses and appeared to be linked to a virus that was first detected in exported cases from Nigeria to Britain, Israel and Singapore in 2018-2019.
The UN agency said the outbreak is “a highly unusual event” and said the fact that cases are being seen in so many different countries suggests the disease may have been silently spreading for some time. The agency's Europe director warned that as summer begins across the continent, mass gatherings, festivals and parties could accelerate the spread of monkeypox.
Other scientists have pointed out that it will be difficult to disentangle whether it is sex itself or the close contact related to sex that has driven the recent spread of monkeypox across Europe.
“By nature, sexual activity involves intimate contact, which one would expect to increase the likelihood of transmission, whatever a person's sexual orientation and irrespective of the mode of transmission," said Mike Skinner, a virologist at Imperial College London.
On Sunday, the chief medical adviser of Britain's Health Security Agency, Dr Susan Hopkins, said she expected more monkeypox cases to be identified in the country “on a daily basis”.
UK officials have said “a notable proportion” of the cases in Britain and Europe have been in young men with no history of travel to Africa and who are gay, bisexual or have sex with men. Authorities in Portugal and Spain also said their cases were in men who mostly had sex with other men and whose infections were picked up when they sought help for lesions at sexual health clinics.
Heymann, who is also a professor of infectious diseases at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said the monkeypox outbreak was likely a random event that might be traceable to a single infection.
“It's very possible there was somebody who got infected, developed lesions on the genitals, hands or somewhere else, and then spread it to others when there was sexual or close, physical contact,” Heymann hypothesised. “And then there were these international events that seeded the outbreak around the world, into the US and other European countries.” He emphasised that the disease was unlikely to trigger widespread transmission.
“This is not COVID,” he said. “We need to slow it down, but it does not spread in the air and we have vaccines to protect against it.” Heymann said studies should be conducted rapidly to determine if monkeypox could be spread by people without symptoms and that populations at risk of the disease should take precautions to protect themselves.

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Markets surrender early gains as metal stocks crack; Tata Steel plunges 12 pc https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65698/markets-surrender-early-gains-as-metal-stocks-crack--tata-steel-plunges-12-pc https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65698/markets-surrender-early-gains-as-metal-stocks-crack--tata-steel-plunges-12-pc Mon, 23 May 2022 19:15:36 +0530 ]]>Equity indices frittered away a good start to close with modest losses on Monday, pressured by heavy selling in metal stocks after the government imposed export duties on steel-making raw materials to curb soaring prices. Mumbai | Equity indices frittered away a good start to close with modest losses on Monday, pressured by heavy selling in metal stocks after the government imposed export duties on steel-making raw materials to curb soaring prices.
The 30-share BSE Sensex opened strong and gained momentum as the session progressed, but came under severe selling pressure in afternoon trade to close 37.78 points or 0.07 per cent lower at 54,288.61.
On similar lines, the broader NSE Nifty slipped 51.45 points or 0.32 per cent to end at 16,214.70.
Metal stocks took a knock after the government on Saturday hiked the tax on export of iron ores and concentrates to 50 per cent, and imposed a duty of 45 per cent on iron pellets in a bid to increase their domestic availability and curb soaring steel prices.
Tata Steel was the biggest loser in the Sensex pack, plummeting 12.53 per cent, followed by UltraTech Cement, ITC, PowerGrid, HDFC, HDFC Bank, HCL Tech and Reliance Industries.
In contrast, M&M, Maruti, HUL, Larsen & Toubro, Asian Paints, Kotak Mahindra Bank and Wipro were among the gainers, climbing as much as 4.14 per cent.
"Nifty once again gave up the intra day gains and ended in the negative. Metals stocks sold off post the levy of export duties over the weekend on iron ore and some steel intermediates," said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research, HDFC Securities.
"After a firm start, markets failed to hold on to their early upsurge and simply lost track to end marginally lower. Metal stocks bore the brunt...," said Shrikant Chouhan, Head of Equity Research (Retail), Kotak Securities Ltd.
Among BSE sectoral indices, metal plunged 8.33 per cent, followed by basic materials (4.08 per cent), oil and gas (1.74 per cent) and energy (1.47 per cent).
In contrast, auto jumped 1.90 per cent, capital goods 0.91 per cent, IT 0.79 per cent and consumer discretionary goods and services 0.78 per cent.
In the broader market, the BSE smallcap declined 0.64 per cent and midcap slipped 0.26 per cent.
Global stocks were mixed, with Asian markets in Shanghai, Seoul and Tokyo ending higher, while Hong Kong settled in the red.
Equity exchanges in Europe were trading mostly higher in the afternoon session.
International oil benchmark Brent crude gained 1.15 per cent to USD 113.8 per barrel.
Rupee recovered from record lows and settled 15 paise higher at 77.55 (provisional) against the US dollar on Monday, supported by a weak greenback overseas.
Continuing their selling spree, foreign institutional investors offloaded shares worth Rs 1,265.41 crore on Friday, as per stock exchange data.

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Amidst excise duty cut, reduction in state tax on petrol, oil cos hiked its base price: Kerala Finance Minister https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65697/amidst-excise-duty-cut--reduction-in-state-tax-on-petrol--oil-cos-hiked-its-base-price--kerala-finance-minister https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65697/amidst-excise-duty-cut--reduction-in-state-tax-on-petrol--oil-cos-hiked-its-base-price--kerala-finance-minister Mon, 23 May 2022 17:30:24 +0530 ]]>The citizens have not received the full benefit of the cut in excise duty on petrol by the Centre and the consequent reduction, by Kerala, in the tax on the fuel due to an increase in its base price by oil companies, the state government claimed on Monday. Thiruvananthapuram | The citizens have not received the full benefit of the cut in excise duty on petrol by the Centre and the consequent reduction, by Kerala, in the tax on the fuel due to an increase in its base price by oil companies, the state government claimed on Monday.

State Finance Minister K N Balagopal in a statement, claimed that with the Rs 8 cut in excise duty on petrol and the Rs 2.41 reduction in the tax on the fuel, the total decrease should have been of Rs 10.41, whereas in reality it was only Rs 9.40.

There is, however, no such issue in the case of diesel where the benefit of excise duty cut and reduction in state tax is in full effect at the pumps.

The reason it is not so in the case of petrol, according to the minister, was the increase in the base price of the fuel by 79 paise.

Sources in the state Finance department said that the oil companies increased the base price of petrol with the concurrence of the Centre.

Balagopal, in his statement, said that if the Centre allows the price of petrol to be hiked like this, then the benefits of the cut in excise duty and state taxes on the fuel would be lost within a month.

On Sunday, the Congress-led UDF had disputed the LDF government claim of having cut taxes on petrol and diesel, after the Centre slashed excise duty on the two fuels, saying it was just a consequence of the central government's decision and not a conscious reduction by the state.

Congress leaders contended that it was unfortunate that the state was claiming it has cut tax on petrol and diesel, when in reality the reduction was a proportionate decrease due to the slash in excise duty by the Centre.

The contention was denied by Balagopal who claimed that the reduction was a conscious decision and not a proportionate decrease.

He had also said that the state has decided that when there is a reduction in price of petrol and diesel, it would reduce the taxes on them.

However, everyone agreed on one point that the Centre needs to slash the excise duty even more.

The Union government on Saturday had cut excise duty on petrol by Rs 8 per litre and that on diesel by Rs 6 per litre to give relief to consumers being battered by high fuel prices which has also pushed inflation to a multi-year high.

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PM headed Inter-State Council reconstituted; Amit Shah chairman of standing committee https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65696/pm-headed-inter-state-council-reconstituted--amit-shah-chairman-of-standing-committee https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65696/pm-headed-inter-state-council-reconstituted--amit-shah-chairman-of-standing-committee Mon, 23 May 2022 17:15:57 +0530 ]]>The Inter-State Council, which works to promote and support cooperative federalism in the country, has been reconstituted with Prime Minister Narendra Modi as chairman and chief ministers of all states and six Union ministers as members. New Delhi | The Inter-State Council, which works to promote and support cooperative federalism in the country, has been reconstituted with Prime Minister Narendra Modi as chairman and chief ministers of all states and six Union ministers as members.

Ten union ministers will be the permanent invitees to the Inter-State Council, according to an official notification.

The government has also reconstituted the standing committee of the Inter-State Council with Union Home Minister Amit Shah as chairman.

While the prime minister is the chairman, chief ministers of all states and Union Territories having a legislative assembly and the administrators of UTs not having a legislative assembly have been made members.

The union ministers who were made members of the council are: Rajnath Singh, Amit Shah, Nirmala Sitharaman, Narendra Singh Tomar, Virendra Kumar, Hardeep Singh Puri, Nitin Gadkari, S Jaishankar, Arjun Munda, Piyush Goyal, Dhamendra Pradhan, Pralhad Joshi, Ashwini Vaishnaw, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Kiren Rijiju and Bhupender Yadav.

The mandate of the council is to create a strong institutional framework to promote and support cooperative federalism in the country, activate the council and zonal councils by organising its regular meetings.

It also facilitates consideration of all pending and emerging issues of the centre- state and inter-state relations by the zonal councils and inter-state council and develop a sound system of monitoring the implementation of the recommendations of the inter-state council and zonal councils.

In a separate notification, the Union home ministry said the composition of the standing committee of the Inter-State Council will be: Amit Shah (chairman) while members include Union ministers Nirmala Sitharaman, Narendra Singh Tomar, Virendra Kumar and Gajendra Singh Shekhawat.

The chief ministers of Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Odisha, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh are also members of the standing committee of the Inter-State Council.

The standing committee will have continuous consultation and process matters for consideration of the council, process all matters pertaining to centre-state relations before they are taken up for consideration in the inter-state council.

The standing committee also monitors the implementation of the decisions taken on the recommendations of the council and consider any other matter referred to it by the chairman or the council.

The standing committee may, if necessary, invite experts and persons eminent in specific fields to have the benefit of their views while deliberating upon the related subjects.

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India, US sign key investment incentive agreement https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65695/india--us-sign-key-investment-incentive-agreement https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65695/india--us-sign-key-investment-incentive-agreement Mon, 23 May 2022 16:59:00 +0530 ]]>India and the US on Monday signed an investment incentive agreement to promote US investments in the key sectors of the country. Tokyo | India and the US on Monday signed an investment incentive agreement to promote US investments in the key sectors of the country.

The India-USA Investment Incentive Agreement (IIA) was signed by Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra and the CEO of US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), Scott Nathan on the sidelines of the Quad summit here.

"Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra and CEO @DFCgov Scott Nathan sign the India-USA Investment Incentive Agreement (IIA). The signing of IIA would lead to enhanced investment support provided by @DFCgov in India, thereby encouraging investment in key sectors," MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi tweeted.

During the Fourth India-US 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue in April, US Secretary of State Antony J Blinken, Secretary of Defence Lloyd J Austin III, Indian Minister of Defence Rajnath Singh and Minister of External Affairs S Jaishankar had noted the substantial progress in negotiations for IIA between the governments of India and the US.

The agreement provides a framework for DFC to continue to expand its investment in India -- for private sector-led projects in critical areas such as renewable energy, agriculture, healthcare, and SME financing.

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63000 DAVV students register in CUET https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65694/63000-davv-students-register-in-cuet https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65694/63000-davv-students-register-in-cuet Mon, 23 May 2022 16:52:42 +0530 ]]>About 63,000 students have registered for the Undergraduate Courses of Common University Entrance Test (CUET) at Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya. Saturday was the last day for registration Indore | About 63,000 students have registered for the Undergraduate Courses of Common University Entrance Test (CUET) at Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya. Saturday was the last day for registration. The university has 1400 seats for 26 undergraduate courses. According to officials, this is the first time that so many students have applied for undergraduate courses alone.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) decided to conduct CUET for admission to courses run by Central and State-level universities.
 From the State, only Devi Ahilya University is associated with the entrance exam. The university included 26 undergraduate courses conducted in April and 18 postgraduate ones on May 17 in CUET. Now DAVV has 3300 seats in 44 courses.
National Testing Agency has been entrusted with holding CUET, according to the officials. Admit cards will be issued to the students after the second week of June.  NTA has decided to conduct the exam in the first week of July.

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Doubts stay over mayoral seat after OBC quota https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65693/doubts-stay-over-mayoral-seat-after-obc-quota- https://www.english.metrovaartha.com/news/65693/doubts-stay-over-mayoral-seat-after-obc-quota- Mon, 23 May 2022 16:42:20 +0530 ]]>After the implementation of OBC reservation, it is believed that there may an increase in the mayoral seat across 14 municipal corporations of the State. Confusion persists as at present, the date of reservation has not been fixed, nor has it been decided whether the public will vote directly for the post or the elected councilors will choose the mayor. Indore | After the implementation of OBC reservation, it is believed that there may an increase in the mayoral seat across 14 municipal corporations of the State. Confusion persists as at present, the date of reservation has not been fixed, nor has it been decided whether the public will vote directly for the post or the elected councilors will choose the mayor.
In Indore, the reservation of the mayor has been done in the unreserved category. This has made general and backward class candidates eye the post. Congress has declared Sanjay Shukla, MLA, from general category as its official candidate. Shukla has already started his campaign. At present, he is on a visit to Ayodhya with the members from his Assembly constituency.
On the other hand, in the BJP, a large number of senior and young leaders are eyeing the mayoral seat.
BJP general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya has said there are more than 20 mayor candidates in his party. The claimants of general and OBC categories have gone up.
Political experts say one seat in the municipal corporations in the State may go up due to OBC reservation. But there is no clarity yet on which that seat could be.

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