Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Lokayukta: Gujarat Bill ending role of Governor, CJ passed

Amid protests and a walkout by Opposition MLAs in the Assembly, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday pushed through a new Gujarat Lokayukta Aayog Bill, 2013 that seeks to end the role of the Governor and the Chief Justice of the High Court in appointing the ombudsman.
The Bill proposes a seven-member selection panel headed by the Chief Minister, which will recommend a candidate for the Lokayukta’s post, and the Governor’s role would only be to ratify the candidate. The other members will be a minister hand-picked by the Chief Minister, the Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition, a High Court judge nominated by the Chief Justice and the State Vigilance Commissioner. 

 The existing Gujarat Lokayukta Act, 1986, empowers the Governor to appoint the ombudsman in consultation with the Chief Justice and the Leader of Opposition. This has now been done away with.
The proposed law comes in the wake of a veritable slugfest between Governor Kamla Beniwal and Chief Minister Narendra Modi after Raj Bhavan appointed retired judge R.A. Mehta in August 2011 in consultation with the Chief Justice and the Leader of the Opposition, ignoring the Council of Ministers.

The government lost this battle in the Supreme Court and after its review petition was also rejected, it moved a curative petition challenging Justice Mehta’s appointment.
Defending the government in the Assembly, Finance Minister Nitin Patel refuted the charge that the Bill sought to curtail the Governor's powers and that its sole purpose was to prevent Justice Mehta from taking charge. The BJP in an explanatory note, later, also stated that the Bill protects the right of Justice Mehta to take charge though he has passed the age of 72 years as prescribed by the new legislation.
Interestingly, the BJP’s central leadership has defended Gujarat, saying the Bill in fact diluted the powers of the Council of Ministers.
In a note distributed to the media, the BJP said the Supreme Court had said the Governor is supposed to act as head of state “on the aid and advice of Council of Ministers while deciding on appointment of Lokayukta.” The party pointed out that instead of the Council of Ministers, a panel would now recommend the name of the Lokayukta.

The legislation proposes to bring the entire government machinery, as well as councillors and elected representatives of all local bodies, within its purview. The new Lokayukta Commission will have four up-lokayuktas, two of whom are judicial members and two administrative. 

( Online news updated by incident2day )

iPhone maker Apple to release updated phone this summer

The Wall Street Journal says Apple is set for a possible summer launch of the next iPhone, rather than a fall launch like the last two models.

Apple is also working on a cheaper iPhone model that could win it some market share in developing countries, the paper says. It cited unnamed people "familiar with the device's production.''
The report is in line with the expectations of company watchers and Wall Street analysts. The iPhone 5 costs around $600, and while Apple maintains older iPhones in production, even those aren't cheap enough to compete effectively against low-end smartphones running Google Inc.'s Android software.
Apple doesn't comment on future products before its launch events.
 ( Online News updated by Incident2day )

IPL 2013: Sourav Ganguly puts his smart money on Mumbai Indi

Sourav Ganguly has said that the presence of a great coaching staff and experienced veterans will make Mumbai Indians the favourites for this edition. "They have a new but highly experienced coach in John Wright, the well-respected Anil Kumble as their mentor and senior pro Ricky Ponting as captain. Along with Sachin Tendulkar and Harbhajan Singh's experience, you have exciting youngsters in Maxwell, Rohit and Rayudu. They will be strong contenders for the title," Ganguly said.

 Speaking about the defending champions, he said: "KKR's confidence will be really high being the champions. But they also have injury problem. I think it's an even-field." The former India captain had also said that domestic players will be key to IPL success. "The difference between good teams and the rest
is the quality of Indian players because overseas players cancel each other out."

( Online News Updated by Incident2day Group )

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Rajinikanth, Kamal join fast to support Sri Lankan Tamils

Chennai, April 2 (IANS) Stalwarts like Rajinikanth, Ajith Kumar, Kamal Haasan and many more Tuesday joined the members of the South Indian Film Artistes Association (SIFAA) in a day-long fast here to protest alleged "war crimes" against Tamils in Sri Lanka.
Spearheaded by SIFAA, commonly known as 'Nadigar Sangam', the film fraternity is observing a silent protest and there was a huge turnout with most of the big names Vikram, Sarath Kumar, Prakash Raj Bhagyaraj, Radha Ravi, Sathyaraj, Sivakumar, Suriya, Karthi, Bharat, Udhayanidhi Stalin, Dhansika, Monica, Vishal Krishna and Chandrasekhar, among others, joining the fast at Nadigar Sangam premises at T. Nagar here.

"One of the reasons we are not using microphone is that we don't want tempers to flare. If given an opportunity, people will vent and unnecessarily create tension," a member of SIFAA told IANS.
Kamal, Rajinikanth, Ajith Kumar, Suriya, and Karthi are among those who couldn't join the March 19 fast.
All activities with regard to the Tamil film industry have come to a standstill. Ajith Kumar was supposed to start shooting for his new Tamil film Tuesday, but he postponed the same to participate in the fast.
All theatres in the city will remain shut during the course of the hunger strike.
The fast will conclude at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

(Online News By Incident2day Group )

Ambani brothers move past feud as Reliance Jio

NEW DELHI/MUMBAI (Reuters) - Billionaire Ambani brothers will share a fibre optic network for their rival telecoms companies, their first business tie-up since ending a long-running feud three years ago.
Reliance Industries (RELI.NS), controlled by Mukesh Ambani, India's richest person, will pay 12 billion rupees to younger brother Anil Ambani's Reliance Communications (RLCM.NS) for use of its fibre optic network.

The companies said on Tuesday they could co-operate further in future and the announcement bolstered their share prices.
Reliance Industries, whose main business is petrochemicals, made a dramatic return to telecoms in 2010 by becoming the only company to gain nationwide 4G airwaves. While it has yet to start services, it is widely expected to begin operations in parts of India later this year.
Debt-laden Reliance Communications, India's third-largest cellular carrier by users, was hived off from the combined Reliance empire after the brothers split up the family businesses in 2005 in a deal brokered by their mother.
Under the terms of Tuesday's fibre optic deal, Reliance Industries will pay "one time indefeasible right to use (IRU) fees for sharing RCOM's nationwide inter-city fibre optic network infrastructure," the companies said.
Reliance Communications shares jumped as much as 17 percent after the news before closing 11 percent higher. Other Anil Ambani group stocks also gained. Reliance Industries' stock closed up 2 percent.
Further details on the tie-up were not immediately available, but the companies indicated more cooperation was possible. Media reports have long speculated that Reliance Industries would lease space on Reliance Communications' tower network or buy an equity stake in the tower business.
"This agreement is the first in an intended comprehensive framework of business co-operation ... for optimal utilisation of the existing and future infrastructure of both companies on reciprocal basis, including inter alia, inter-city fibre, intra-city fibre, towers and related assets," the companies said.
Reliance Communications is the most leveraged among Indian cellular carriers with net debt of nearly $7 billion, or more than five times its annualised operating profit. The company has been looking to sell assets to cut its debt load but has fallen short in several attempts.
"It is definitely a relief for Reliance Communications, and a relief coming to the group after a long, long time even though not sufficiently large," said Jagannadham Thunuguntla, strategist at SMC Global Securities in New Delhi.
Tuesday's deal will help Reliance Jio Infocomm "reach the market faster," said Deven Choksey, managing director of K.R. Choksey Securities in Mumbai.
According to Forbes, Mukesh Ambani is worth $21.5 billion, while Anil Ambani is worth $5.2 billion.
Dhirubhai Ambani's death in 2002 led to a power struggle between his two sons that split the Reliance empire. Mukesh ended up with the core energy business, and Anil ended up with the telecoms, financial services and power businesses.
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