QBullet: India, Spain Ink 7 Pacts; Yogi Adityanath Visits Ayodhya

The Quint’s roundup of headlines from national dailies.

6 min read
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, left, shakes hands with Spanish Premier Mariano Rajoy before a meeting at the Moncloa Palace in Madrid (Photo: PTI)

1) India, Spain Sign 7 Agreements

India and Spain signed seven agreements, including on cyber security and technical cooperation in civil aviation. The agreements were signed after Prime Minister Modi held wide-ranging talks with Prime Minister of the Spanish government Mariano Rajoy at the Moncloa Palace in the Spanish capital.

The two sides agreements on transfer of sentenced persons and visa waiver for holders of diplomatic passports. Five MoUs were signed between the two countries on cooperation in organ transplantation, cyber security, renewable energy, civil aviation and one between India’s Foreign Service Institute and Diplomatic Academy of Spain.

Modi, the first Indian Prime Minister to visit Spain since 1988, praised the Spanish President saying under Rajoy’s leadership the country has undergone economic reforms “which is also the biggest priority of my government.”

(Source: The Hindu)

2) UP CM Yogi Adityanath Visits Ayodhya, Says Ram Temple Issue Should Be Resolved Through Dialogue

On Wednesday, Yogi Adityanath became the first Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh to pray at the disputed Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid site since 2002.

Adityanath offered prayers to Ram Lalla at the controversial site where Babri Masjid was demolished by right-wing extremists on 6 December 1992. He also visited the banks of the Saryu river.

Adityanath largely remained mum on the disputed site. He only said that he hoped for “the two communities” to resolve their differences through dialogue. 

Read the full story on The Quint.


3) For the Third Year in a Row, a Woman Claims Top Spot in Civil Services Exam

A woman IRS officer from Karnataka, Nandini KR, has topped the civil services exam 2016. This is for the third year in a row that a woman has bagged the top rank in the elite exam, with Ira Singhal having topped CSE 2014 and Tina Dabi CSE 2015.

Nandini, who bagged the top position in her fourth attempt, belongs to the other backward classes (OBC). Incidentally, last year's topper, Tina Dabi, was from the Scheduled Castes.

The second and third rank went to Anmol Sher Singh Bedi from Amritsar in Punjab and Gopalakrishna Ronanki, respectively. Nandini KR said:

This is a very happy moment. I was hoping to do well this time, but the top position is a pleasant surprise.

Bedi, calling himself the male topper, said it was "miracle" and that he was, in fact, already preparing for CSE 2017.

(Source: Times of India)


4) Rajasthan High Court Recommends Declaration of Cow as National Animal

The Rajasthan High Court on Wednesday recommended that the Centre declare the cow as a national animal and increase the punishment for cow slaughter to life imprisonment. In a slew of directions passed on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL), the court asked the State Chief Secretary to take steps to get the suggestions implemented.

Disposing of the PIL moved by Jago Janata Society regarding the conditions at Hingonia gaushala in Jaipur, the court also appointed a committee of lawyers to keep a watch on the cow shelter’s functioning. 

The Forest Department was asked to plant 5,000 saplings every year in the gaushala to keep it green.

The court said the nature of land allotted for the gaushala at Hingonia, on the outskirts of Jaipur, would not be changed and the State government would continue to allocate finances for its maintenance.

(Source: The Hindu)


5) Poll Funding: EC Asks Govt to Scrap New Secrecy Norms

he Election Commission (EC) has written to the Law Ministry objecting to the recent amendments in the Representation of the People (RP) Act and the Companies Act, which exempt political parties from disclosing donations received through electoral bonds and remove cap on corporate contribution to political parties, respectively.

In a letter written to Law Secretary Suresh Chandra last week, the Commission has asked the government to “reconsider” and “modify” the above amendments as they discourage transparency in political donation.The poll panel is also learnt to be upset about the government bringing amendments to the RP Act in Parliament through a Money Bill without consulting the EC. The letter, however, makes no mention of that.


6) Techie Shot Dead in Noida, Murder Caught on CCTV

A 23-year-old woman employee of a mobile handset company was shot dead by an unidentified person at Shatabdi Rail Vihar, a residential society in Noida Sector 62, on Wednesday morning.

Police said CCTV cameras recorded footage of Anjali Rathour, a trainee engineer with Lava International Limited, being chased by a pistol-wielding man at a parking lot of the apartment complex around 6.34 am. 

However, poor video quality has prevented police from zeroing in on the murderer so far. Anjali hailed from Jagadhri, near Yamuna Nagar, in Haryana.

The matter came to light when her roommate, Jyoti, noticed people crowding around a still body on the ground floor. Though she and four others rushed Anjali to the nearby Fortis hospital, she was pronounced dead on arrival.

(Source: Hindustan Times)


7) IIT-Bombay Students Protest Against 'Hindutva Vigilantism'

A day after a research scholar of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras, was attacked for being associated with a beef fest on campus, over 100 students and research scholars of IIT Bombay came out in protest on Wednesday evening.

A peaceful march was held within the campus to condemn the increasing “Hindutva vigilantism” on IIT campuses. Students said that the protest came in the wake of recent attacks at two IITs.

On Tuesday, Sooraj, a PhD scholar from IIT-M, was allegedly attacked by a group of students affiliated to the Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh. In a statement, the students said:

These two incidents show us that IITs are quite unbecoming of democratic academic spaces. These are not just law and order problems but have social and political dimensions. We appeal to academic community of IIT-B to speak up for strict action against the culprits...We demand a thriving academic atmosphere where people would be free to organise and register forms of protest in a democratic manner. 

(Source: Indian Express)


8) Fresh Trouble for Lalu's Son: BPCL Serves Notice to Tej Pratap Yadav Over Petrol Pump Allotment

In fresh trouble for RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav’s family, the Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL) recently served a notice to his son Tej Pratap Yadav who is the minister for Health, Minor Water Resources, Environment and Forest in the Nitish Kumar government.

The notice was issued following a complaint that Yadav had obtained a petrol pump at the Anisabad bypass road in Patna on the basis of “wrong information” that he had furnished.

It was signed by BPCL Territory Manager (Retail), Patna, Manish Kumar, a copy of which was made available to the media.

Earlier, in a series of allegations against Lalu Prasad’s family, BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi had spoken about the allotment of petrol pump to Tej Pratap Yadav. In 2012, Yadav had applied for the petrol pump. The pump was commissioned to M/S Lara Automobiles on 27 February this year, of which Tej Pratap was the proprietor.

(Source: Indian Express)


9) Varanasi to Get India's 1st Freight Village

Varanasi will get the country's first 'freight village' spread over around 100 acres. The plan to set up this project close to the upcoming multi-mode terminal along the Ganga has attracted major players including Dubai Port World and IL&FS.

A ‘Freight Village’ is a specialised industrial estate which attracts companies that require logistics services and can cluster to improve their competitiveness. T

his will allow relocation of retailers, warehouse operators and logistics service providers supplying the regional FMCG market.

Due to its proximity to the main city, it will serve as a distribution centre and as a point of transfer between long distance transport by truck, rail and waterway and short distance distribution with delivery vans. 'Freight Village' includes an inter-modal terminal, which facilitates integration between different modes of transport.

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