News Feed 24-Aug ‘2016

Gujarat Assembly passes GST Bill, after opposition marshaled out

  • Amidst suspension of entire opposition from the house proceedings, the Gujarat Assembly passed Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill. Before the Bill was introduced in the House, members of the opposition party were suspended from the proceedings after ruckus over the issue of flogging of Dalits by cow vigilante group in Una.
  • During a discussion on atrocities on Dalits in Una, Congress members rushed to the Well displaying placards stating BJP was “anti-Dalit” and threw bangles towards the members in the Treasury Benches.
  • Dressed in banner suits, opposition members continued their protests near the Well, which led to eviction of them from the House by the marshals. Subsequently, Assembly speaker Ramanlal Vora suspended almost 50 members except the Leader of the Opposition and Deputy Leader, who had remained seated.
  • Raising the issue of atrocities against Dalits in the State, senior Congress legislator Raghavji Patel sought to know what actions the government had taken against those who had assaulted Dalits in Una and also those returning from the Dalit Pride March.
  • When the Minister of the State for Home Pradipsinh Jadeja was replying, leader of the opposition Shankersinh Vaghela demanded a judicial probe by a sitting high court in the Una flogging issue, prompting the opposition members to stand up from their seat and raise slogans and placards.
  • Meanwhile, after the GST Bill was debated by the members of the ruling party, Mr. Vora announced that the Bill was passed unopposed in the House.
  • Deputy Chief Minister who handles finance portfolio Nitin Patel, who introduced the bill in the house, lauded the central government for building a consensus on GST, which will help in boosting GDP growth in the country.
  • Outside the Assembly, the Congress held a Jan Akrosh rally in the state capital to highlight failures of the state BJP government. More than 1500 Congress party workers and top leaders were detained by the police when they tried to enter the secretariat. The government had closed all five gates of the secretariat, fearing the Congress members would create ruckus.


TS, Maharashtra ink pacts on three barrages to tap Godavari waters

  • Unveiling a new chapter in the inter-State relations with neighbouring States, Telangana signed three agreements with Maharashtra in Mumbai with plans to utilise its allocated share of waters to irrigate 39 lakh acres of parched land by constructing three barrages across Penganga, Pranahitha and Godavari rivers.
  • The agreements were signed by Chief Ministers K. Chandrasekhar Rao and Devendra Fadnavis during the first Inter-State Board meeting on Godavari river, in the presence of Union Minister of State for Home Hansraj Gangaram Ahir, several ministers and top ranking officials from the two sides. The two Chief Ministers termed the signing of accords as “historic event” since they resolved water disputes lingering on for decades “without the intervention of the Centre, tribunals or courts”.
  • The agreements were signed on construction of barrages across Pranahitha at Tummidihatti in Adilabad district with 148-metre full reservoir level (FRL), at Medigadda in Karimnagar across the Godavari with 100-metre FRL and at Chankha-Korata in Adilabad across Penganga river with 213-metre FRL. The capacity of the barrages designed at the three places is 1.8 TMC ft, 16.17 TMC ft and 0.85 TMC ft, respectively and utilisation of about 200 TMC ft water out of Telangana’s allocated share of 950 TMC ft in Godavari waters.
  • Acknowledging the hard work that went into the accord, the Maharashtra Chief Minister complimented the efforts of Mr. Harish Rao and other officials of Telangana.


Sudha Singh tests negative for Zika

  • Middle-distance runner Sudha Singh, after her arrival from Rio, has tested positive for Influenza ‘A’ H1N1, contrary to speculation that it could be Zika.
  • Her serum sample that had been sent to the National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune, for a suspected Zika virus infection, has tested negative.
  • As 200 passengers had travelled in the same flight that she took during her return, the health department has informed all of them to report if they develop any symptoms in the next seven days.
  • Although the screening team at the airport did not suspect any infection, Sudha (30) complained of fever, joint pain and fatigue soon after her arrival at the Sports Authority of India (SAI) here.
  • After initial treatment there she was rushed to Fortis Hospital, Nagarbhavi, as her blood pressure fell to worrying levels.
  • Meanwhile, the Karnataka government has promised to cover Sudha’s medical expenses in full. Officials from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare from New Delhi will be monitoring the situation and also intimating all airports to screen athletes returning from Rio for any illnesses.
  • Influenza A (H1N1) virus is the subtype of influenza A virus that was the most common cause of human influenza (flu) in 2009, and is associated with the 1918 outbreak known as the Spanish Flu. It is an orthomyxovirus that contains the glycoproteins haemagglutinin and neuraminidase.
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