QBullet: BJP to Form Govt in Manipur; Goa Floor Test on 16 March
1. Governor Invites BJP to Form 'Stable' Manipur Government
After three days of political drama, Manipur governor Najma Heptullah on Tuesday invited BJP legislature party leader Nongthombam Biren Singh to form a coalition government. "I weighed and measured the stability factor before making the decision," she said.
Biren, who had staked claim on Monday, will be sworn in along with other ministers on Wednesday. With this, the footballer-turned-journalist-turned-politician will end the 15-year rule of his mentor, outgoing Congress CM Okram Ibobi Singh.
2. SC Advances Goa Govt Floor Test to Thursday
The Supreme Court brought forward the floor test for the BJP-led coalition government headed by Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar in Goa to Thursday but did not stay its swearing-in, while also rejecting the Congress's plea for a composite floor test. Parrikar and his nine-member cabinet were sworn in on Tuesday evening.
The SC, while hearing pleas challenging Governor Mridula Sinha's invitation to BJP, reduced the 15-day time given to Parrikar to prove his majority.
However, it did not accept the Congress's plea to stay the swearing-in, saying the party had not effectively challenged BJP's claim of numbers and the court could not play the role of Governor.
3. SC Collegium Ends 1-Year Impasse, Finalises Judicial Appointment Procedure
Overcoming serious differences within itself, as well as with the Centre, the Supreme Court collegium has finalised the Memorandum of Procedure (MoP) for appointment of judges to constitutional courts.
The issue had been a bone of contention between the executive and the judiciary for more than a year.
The collegium, headed by Chief Justice JS Khehar and comprising Justices Dipak Misra, J Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi and Madan B Lokur agreed to the contentious national security clause that the Centre had insisted upon as one of the grounds for determining the eligibility of judges for appointment to the apex court and high courts.
4. Rumours in Kashmir: Bulbs, Sim Cards 'Helping' Security Agencies Kill Militants
An increase in militant deaths across Kashmir – especially its southern region – has given rise to rumours that intelligence agencies have “enrolled” common technological devices such as electric bulbs and sim cards in their crusade against rebel elements.
According to sources, it began with unverified reports that residents of South Kashmir were smashing subsidised LED bulbs being distributed by the government under the Ujala scheme. There was a widespread belief that they were fitted with “micro chips that could track down militants the moment they enter a person’s house”. Some even claimed that the bulbs – distributed at Rs 20 against the actual market price of Rs 250 – were fitted with surveillance cameras.
5. No Ballot Papers, Use EVMs in MCD Polls: EC Snubs Kejriwal, Maken
The Election Commission on Tuesday rejected Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s demand to use ballot papers instead of EVMs for the Delhi Municipal Corporation elections, which will be held on 22 April.
Earlier, taking a cue from BSP chief Mayawati, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had expressed reservations about the use of Electronic Voting Machines in the civic body polls.
Kejriwal has directed Delhi Chief Secretary MM Kutty to write to the State Election Commission in this regard.
“The chief minister has directed the chief secretary to ask the state election office to hold MCD elections through ballot papers,” a source in the CM’s office said.
Read more on The Quint
6. From April, Bathrooms in South Delhi Hotels Will Be Open to Public at Rs 5
Come April and you won’t have to go looking for public washrooms to relieve yourself after a long day of shopping in a South Delhi market.
Just walk into the nearest restaurant, convey your need to the staff and you will be able to use the well-equipped toilet for a meagre Rs 5.
The South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) on Tuesday issued directions to all hotels, restaurants and eateries in its jurisdiction to make their washrooms accessible to the public from 1 April.
The move would allow anyone with Rs 5 in hand to access washrooms in even five-star hotels of South Delhi.
7. Father of JNU Student Alleges Foul Play Over Caste, Seeks CBI Probe
JNU research scholar J Muthukrishnan, who allegedly committed suicide on Monday evening, was a close friend of Rohith Vemula’s, another Dalit academic who killed himself in January last year, students at University of Hyderabad said.
Before JNU, Muthukrishnan studied at University of Hyderabad where Vemula committed suicide, an incident that sparked nationwide outrage over caste discrimination on campuses.
Muthukrishnan was suffering from depression and was not sleeping well for the past few days, Delhi Police said on Tuesday. The 29-year-old was found hanging at a friend’s house in Munirka Vihar, close to the JNU campus, on Monday evening.
While police began an investigation into the alleged suicide, Muthukrishnan’s father Jeevanantham alleged foul play and demanded a CBI probe.
8. No Aadhaar, No Scholarship
A key set of scholarships that encourages middle school students to pursue careers in science, collegians to opt for basic science research and women to return to labs after a break in career, will soon require an Aadhar registration.
A 9 March notification by the Union Ministry of Science and Technology says:
The last date for application would be 30 September and were a scholarship-holder to live in a block or taluka without an Aadhar enrolment centre, the Science Ministry would be required to set up a facility, the notification adds.
Source: The Hindu
9. 'Cong a Little Down in UP,' Rahul Says Even as Anger Brews Over Goa
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi described the party's electoral setback in Uttar Pradesh as a "little down in UP" and said structural changes were required, even as senior leader Satyavrat Chaturvedi said it was too late for correctives and resentment surfaced over the "mishandling" of Goa.
On UP, where the SP-Congress tie-up won 47 seats, of which the Congress got seven, Rahul said ups and downs in politics were normal. He said the Congress had won in Punjab, Manipur and Goa.
But Chaturvedi, the Congress chief whip in RS, said, "The time for surgery has passed in the Congress. If a surgery was done in time, it would not have come to this pass."