rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 

LIVE! Ghatkopar plane crash: UY Aviation claims it had necessary approvals

Write a comment

July 01, 2018


20:57  Ghatkopar plane crash: UY Aviation claims it had necessary approvals:  
Two days after the husband of the co-pilot of the small plane which crashed in Mumbai's suburban area of Ghatkopar questioned the air-worthiness of the ill-fated plane belonging to the UY Aviation, the company today said that all "necessary" requirements and "approvals" were in place.

In a statement issued today, the Mumbai-based private chartered aircraft firm also said that "it is extending its full co-operation to all the regulatory and law enforcement agencies involved in the aftermath of the tragic crash."

Five people, four crew members including two pilots and a pedestrian, lost their lives when the 12-seater plane on a test flight crashed into an under-construction building on Thursday.

Prabhat Kathuria, the husband of Marya Zuberi, the co-pilot who along with four others was killed in the incident had alleged that the test flight was performed despite adverse weather conditions.

Stating that it wanted to put things in proper perspective, the company clarified that, "before undertaking the test flight, it was ensured that all necessary requirements and approvals were in place."

The aircraft took off from Juhu Aerodrome approximately 12:20 hours on June, 28 with two pilots employed by UY Aviation and  two technical personnel ofMRO Indamer Aviation Private Limited and flew for approximately 40 minutes as per the air test profile, it said adding the contact with Mumbai ATC was reportedly lost at around approx 13:00 hours IST and the wreckage was later found near Ghatkopar.
20:42  Kejriwal urges all parties to unite for full statehood for Delhi:  
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal today appealed to all political parties to unite to demand complete statehood for the national capital and announced a city-wide campaign for the same.
  
"It's not just the Aam Aadmi Party's fight... All parties should come together to support this demand. We will convene an all-party meeting soon to seek support for complete statehood for Delhi," Kejriwal told a gathering of party workers at the Indira Gandhi Stadium.

"I want to remind Prime Minister Narendra Modi of his promise to grant full statehood to Delhi. If he doesn't deliver on it, his party will not get a single seat in the next elections," the chief minister said.

The lack of statehood was the reason behind the continuous tussle with the lieutenant governor and the alleged strike by bureaucrats, according to Kejriwal.

Once Delhi becomes a "full state", it would witness spurt in the development work, the AAP chief said, adding his party was fighting for the dignity of Delhi's voters. 

-- PTI
20:12  Lok Sabha MPs can ask max 5 questions per day from next session':  
Lok Sabha members can ask only up to five questions per day now from the upcoming session of the House instead of 10 allowed till now, said an official release.
 
The Lok Sabha 'Questions Cell' in a bulletin said the members are aware that as per direction 10B of the Lok Sabha speaker, no member can give notices for posing more than ten queries a day.

It added the Speaker's direction 10B has been amended niow due to the number of notices for the questions exceeding 230 per day.
The bulletin signed by Lok Sabha Secretary General Snehlata Srivastava said as per the new amendment, the maximum number of question notices to be given by each MP per day has been brought down to 5 from 10.
If a member gives notices for asking more than five questions on a day, the remaining questions would be allowed to be raised the following day, the bulletin said.

The bulletin also asked the members to apprise the Question Cell if he or she prefers to give notices for his questions to be raised during the entire session in one go.

The speaker's new direction would be effective from the next sessions of the House, ie, from the 15th session of the 16th Lok Sabha, the bulletin added.

-- PTI
19:53  Did UK defence minister snub Sitharaman?:  
Britain's Defence Minister Gavin Williamson is reportedly under fire from within the UK Cabinet for turning down a bilateral meeting with his Indian counterpart Nirmala Sitharaman, who was due to attend the first-ever UK-India Week, a media report claimed today.

The meeting was requested over a month ago by Indian officials, and at least two British ministers including foreign secretary Boris Johnson reportedly sought to convince Williamson of the importance of finding time in the diary for Sitharaman.

Williamson, UK Secretary of State for defence, declined to meet Sitharaman's three-day window of bilateral talks on security cooperation and defence procurement between June 20 and 22, according to The Sunday Times.

There was no immediate comment from the ministry of defence in New Delhi.

"People are spitting blood about this," the newspaper quoted a UK government source as saying.

"India has one of the fastest-growing defence budgets in the world, spending something like USD 50 billion a year. It feels like another ill-judged move by Williamson," the source said.

The report said that Williamson has been accused of angering one of the world's largest emerging economies by snubbing his Indian counterpart.

-- PTI
19:24  Amid coalition worries, Karnataka legislature begins tomorrow:  
Amid coalition worries, the first full-fledged assembly session in Karnataka after the H D Kumaraswamy led Congress-JD-S government came to power will
begin here tomorrow with Governor Vajubhai Vala addressing the joint session.

This will be for the third time the fifteenth assembly will be meeting after the assembly polls in May, which yielded a fractured verdict with BJP emerging as the single largest party, but falling short of numbers to form the government.

In the first session on May 19, the three-day-old B S Yeddyurappa led BJP government resigned even before taking the floor test with numbers stacked up against it, while the second one on May 25 saw Kumaraswamy winning the vote of confidence.

The session is beginning tomorrow against the backdrop of discordant notes emerging from the Congress and JDS even on the issue of presenting a full-fledged budget and over several ministerial aspirants in both parties failing to make it to the cabinet.

-- PTI
19:04  Mandsaur rape: BJP leader offers bounty to behead accused:  
BJP leader Sanjeev Mishra on Sunday announced a bounty of Rs 5 lakh for beheading Mandsaur rape accused.

On June 28, an eight-year-old girl was abducted and allegedly raped by an unidentified person before being abandoned at a secluded place in Mandsaur.

The BJP leader said if the court fails to grant capital punishment to the accused, he will give Rs 5 lakh to anybody who beheads the accused.

"We demand capital punishment for the accused. If the court or administration is not capable of doing it, I have said I will give Rs 5 lakh to the person who beheads the accused and gets his head," he said.

Taking note of the depravity in the matter, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan earlier condemned the incident and said that the accused should be hanged till death.

Two accused in the case have been arrested. A Special Investigation Team has also been constituted to further investigate the matter.

-- ANI
18:34  JUST IN: Suicide bombing in eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan kills 10, including Sikhs, Hindus
18:13  5 killed by Maharashtra villagers after child lifting rumour:  
Five persons were killed in Maharashtra's Dhule district today by villagers, who suspected that they were part of a gang of child lifters, police said.

The five, along with a few others, were seen getting down from a state transport bus in the tribal Rainpada hamlet, police said.

When one of them apparently tried to speak to a girl child, villagers, who had gathered for the weekly Sunday bazaar, pounced on them, they said.

"Five were killed in the mob fury," police said.

According to police, there were rumours for the last few days that a gang of child lifters was active in the area.

The bodies are being taken to the nearby Pimpalner hospital, they added.

-- PTI 
17:37  'During surgical strikes, India was ready for any escalation from Pakistan':  
The Indian side was prepared for escalation -- in case Pakistan chose to do so -- while conceiving and executing the 2016 surgical strikes by crossing the Line of Control along the Jammu and Kashmir border, according to the army general who oversaw the strikes.

"We had sort of war-gamed all the contingencies of what could be the impact of the surgical strike. And one of the things that we did consider was that in case Pakistan decides to escalate, then what do we have to do," Lt General Deependra Singh Hooda (retd), who planned and oversaw the execution of the operation as the General Officer Commanding of the Northern Command.

"And we had put plans in place of what is to be done in various areas. I can't go into details, but definitely it was something that we considered," he added.

Hooda also said they knew there would only be a "limited" kind of response from Pakistan side, if at all.

"I was clear in my mind that the surgical strike was not going to lead to something like an all-out war between the two countries. That wouldn't have happened because Pakistan military's capabilities in that sense are limited. So I am not sure they would have decided to escalate to that extent," Hooda said.

"But, yes, some local border incidents, in a kind of escalation, was something that we had in our mind," he added.

Hooda said that this was not the first time that such a cross-LoC operation was done -- in fact such things go on a "fairly regular basis" in a limited manner -- but the surgical strike of 2016 was different from earlier similar operations primarily in two ways.
17:35  'During surgical strikes, India was ready for any escalation from Pakistan':  
The Indian side was prepared for escalation -- in case Pakistan chose to do so -- while conceiving and executing the 2016 surgical strikes by crossing the Line of Control along the Jammu and Kashmir border, according to the army general who oversaw the strikes.

"We had sort of war-gamed all the contingencies of what could be the impact of the surgical strike. And one of the things that we did consider was that in case Pakistan decides to escalate, then what do we have to do," Lt General Deependra Singh Hooda (retd), who planned and oversaw the execution of the operation as the General Officer Commanding of the Northern Command.

"And we had put plans in place of what is to be done in various areas. I can't go into details, but definitely it was something that we considered," he added.

Hooda also said they knew there would only be a "limited" kind of response from Pakistan side, if at all.

"I was clear in my mind that the surgical strike was not going to lead to something like an all-out war between the two countries. That wouldn't have happened because Pakistan military's capabilities in that sense are limited. So I am not sure they would have decided to escalate to that extent," Hooda said.

"But, yes, some local border incidents, in a kind of escalation, was something that we had in our mind," he added.

Hooda said that this was not the first time that such a cross-LoC operation was done -- in fact such things go on a "fairly regular basis" in a limited manner -- but the surgical strike of 2016 was different from earlier similar operations primarily in two ways.
17:13  UN chief to visit Rohingya camps in Bangladesh on Monday:  
United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres said on Sunday he will visit the Rohingya refugee camps in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, on Monday to assess for himself the gravity of the problem.

Guterres said that the United Nations intends to ramp up pressure on the government of Myanmar to speed up the repatriation process.

"We're keeping up pressure on Myanmar... we need to put more pressure on Myanmar to make them understand what they should do on this issue," he was quoted by the Daily Star as saying during his meeting with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in her office.

Bangladesh Prime Minister Hasina's Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim told media that Guterres had also said that the United Nations and the World Bank will continue their support to Bangladesh over the Rohingya issue.

-- ANI
16:58  Two migrant workers mistaken for 'child-lifters,' beaten up in TN:  
In yet another incident of attack on migrant labourers, two persons were today thrashed by locals in Chennai on suspicion that they were trying to abduct a child, police said.
    
However, the duo was rescued and admitted to a hospital, they said.
    
The incident comes in the backdrop a spate of similar such incidents in several parts of the country when people were either attacked or lynched on suspicion that they were child abductors.
    
When the workers were seen with a child at Teynampet, residents grew suspicious and began beating them up after they found the duo's explanation unsatisfying.
    
"The child's mother happen to be the labourers' previous house owner and when she had gone to a nearby shop last night; the two men were seen by some local men patting the child," a police official said.
    
The two men who sustained injuries were rescued by police and admitted at the Government Stanley Medical College hospital where they are now recuperating.
    
On April 28, a Hindi speaking man was clubbed to death by a group of villagers in Vellore district, who suspected him to be a child trafficker.

-- PTI
16:34  'Horrified': Mehbooba terms trolling of Sushma Swaraj outrageous:  
Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti today said she was horrified by the "vicious" trolling of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on social media and described it as outrageous. 
  
"Horrified by the vicious trolling @SushmaSwaraj ji has been subjected to. Absolutely outrageous!" Mehbooba wrote on Twitter. 
      
The PDP president said if even the minister was not spared from trolls, what hope was there for any other women in the country. 
     
"If our own minister of external affairs is not spared, what hope is there for any other woman?" she asked.
16:29  Suspected bike-borne terrorist fire upon security forces in J-K's Pulwama:  
Suspected bike-borne terrorists on Sunday fired upon joint naka party of security forces at Pulwama -Sirnoo Road in Pulwama district's Dalipora in Jammu and Kashmir.

No casualty and injury have been reported yet.

More details are awaited.

This comes a day after the security forces gunned down three terrorists in an encounter Pulwama district.

Since few days, the state has witnessed a huge spurt in terror activity. 

-- ANI
15:47  JUST IN: Tremors felt in Delhi and adjoining areas 
15:28  Govt cancels export of sheep, goats to UAE after protests by Jains:  
The government has cancelled the export of sheep and goats to the United Arab Emirates that was to begin from the city airport from Saturday, following protests by the members of Jain community.

The export project, an initiative of the ministry of commerce and industry, was spearheaded by Rajya Sabha MP and Dhangar community leader Dr Vikas Mahatme.
It was aimed at increasing the income of farmers and open new avenues of self-employment.

The first consignment of a total 2,000 sheep and goats was to be sent from the city's Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport yesterday afternoon. Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union minister Nitin Gadkari
and others were scheduled to remain present on the occasion.

The programme, however, was cancelled and postponed for indefinite period after the ministry directed Mahatme to hold talks with the protesters first.

The members of Sakal Jain Samaj, led by Dr Richa Jain, are against the project. On Friday, they had taken out a march to the RSS headquarters to seek its support on the issue.

Jain, who is the president of Digamber Jain Mahasabha Samiti (Maharashtra), said there are several other options to increase the income of farmers rather than
sending sheep and goats to slaughter houses.

"We are strongly against this project. Once it starts, it will not remain restricted to Nagpur alone, but will spread to other parts of the country," she said.

Jain added that a petition will be filed in the Bombay high court on Monday to seek a ban on this export programme.

-- PTI
15:22  Volunteer on Amarnath yatra dies of cardiac arrest:  
A volunteer, working at a community kitchen of Amarnath yatra, died due to cardiac arrest in Jammu and Kashmir's Anantnag district, police said.
  
Bano Bhai Ghadiya, 62, a 'sevadar' (volunteer) from Surat in Gujarat, died at the Nunwan base camp in the Pahalgam area, a police official said.

This is the second death in this year's Amarnath yatra which began on June 28.

A BSF assistant sub-inspector, posted on yatra duty at the Beetab Valley, died after complaining of chest pain on the first day of the yatra. 

-- PTI
15:03  PM rules out single rate under GST, says Mercedes and milk can't have same tax:  
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today ruled out a single tax rate under the GST, saying Mercedes car and milk cannot be taxed at the same rate and accepting Congress party's demand for a uniform 18 per cent rate would lead to a spike in food and essential items' taxation.
Modi said the Goods and Services Tax has within one year of its launch led to over 70 per cent jump in indirect taxpayer base, demolished check-posts and merged 17 taxes and 23 cesses into one single tax.
 
The new tax regime, which subsumed central levies like excise duty and service tax and state taxes like VAT, is aimed at making indirect taxation "simple" while eliminating the Inspector Raj, he said, adding the GST is an evolving system which is calibrated based on feedback from state governments, trades and other stakeholders.
"It would have been very simple to have just one slab but it would have meant we could not have food items at zero per cent tax rate. Can we have milk and Mercedes at the same rate?
 
"So, when our friends in Congress say that they will have just one GST rate, they are effectively saying they will tax food items and commodities, which are currently at zero or 5 per cent, at 18 per cent," he said in an interview to 'Swarajya' magazine.
 
Modi, according to a part-transcript of the 45-minute interview posted by Swarajya on its website, said against a total of 66 lakh indirect taxpayers registered since independence, 48 lakh new enterprises have registered since the launch of the GST on July 1, 2017.
"Around 350 crore invoices were processed and 11 crore returns were filed. Would we be looking at such numbers, if GST were indeed very complex?" he asked. "Check-posts across the country have been abolished and there are no more queues at state borders. Not only are truck drivers saving precious time but also the logistics sector is getting a boost and thereby increasing the productivity of our country. Would this be happening if GST was complex?"
          
To a query on criticism of GST implementation, he said the new tax regime was a massive change, requiring a complete reset of one of the world's largest economic systems.

-- PTI
14:42  Mallya's luxury jet finally sold for Rs 35 crore:  
After at least four aborted attempts since March 2016, the service tax authorities managed to get a buyer for the confiscated luxury jet of the runway businessman Vijay Mallya, with a Florida-based Aviation Management Sales emerging as the highest bidder for Rs 34.8 crore last Friday, a source
has said.

The service tax authorities had put the luxury A319 jet, which Mallya used to crisscross the world to solicit business deals, under the hammer to recover their dues to the tune of Rs 800 crore accumulated on account of non-payment of service tax before his erstwhile Kingfisher Airlines went belly up in October 2012.

The transaction was completed last Friday through an e-auction, following a Karnataka high court order, the source said, adding the jet has been parked at a hangar of the Mumbai airport since its confiscation in 2013.

The deal will go through after the Bombay high court approval.
14:28  Mayawati questions PM Modi's silence on black money:  
Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati on Sunday raised questions on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's silence over the black money issue.

Addressing the media, Mayawati said, "People of the nation want to know why the government, especially the Prime Minister, silent on black money is. Is it because most of those people who deposit money abroad are those close to the BJP, due to whom it has emerged as the wealthiest party of India in such short span of time?"

The BSP chief further questioned, "Businessmen take the help of Indian banks to flourish their business and then flee after conning them to deposit their money outside. People in the country are wondering why is Narendra Modi government so helpless when it comes to stopping them?"

Mayawati stated that the Bharatiya Janata Party has kept development issues aside and come back to its original agenda of hatred, communal disharmony and divisive politics.

The BSP chief also held this as the reason behind pulling out of alliance in Jammu and Kashmir.

"People are recalling promises made by Prime Minister, especially the one to bring back black money. That's why the BJP has dropped development issue and come back to its original agenda of hatred, communal disharmony and divisive politics, that's why they pulled out of alliance in J-K," she said.

Prime Minister Modi-led government in Centre is facing flak over a report claiming that Swiss banks reported 50 percent rise in Indian deposits in 2017 after declining for three successive years.

-- ANI
14:04  India's most potent missile Agni-V to be inducted soon:  
India is in the process of inducting the first batch of its intercontinental ballistic missile system -- Agni-V -- which will bring targets across China within its range, and is expected to significantly bolster the country's military prowess.
  
The missile system, with a strike range of 5,000 km and capable of carrying nuclear warhead, are being inducted into the elite Strategic Forces Command, official sources said.

They said a series of user trials are being conducted before the country's most sophisticated weapon is handed over to the SFC.

Defence experts said the missile is capable of bringing targets across China including its prominent cities like Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hong Kong under its range.

Last month, Agni-V was successfully test-fired off the Odisha coast and the sources said a number of other pre-induction tests are being planned in the next few weeks.

"It is a strategic asset which will act as a deterrent. We are at the fag end of the strategic project," said an official, who is part of the Agni-V programme.

He said it is the most advanced weapon in its series as it has latest technologies for navigation and its capability of carrying nuclear warhead is much superior.

The first batch of Agni-V will be handed over to the SFC "soon", the sources said while declining to elaborate further on the closely-guarded defence project.

The missile is being inducted at a time when India's neighbourhood is witnessing evolving security threats.

Very few countries including the US, China, Russia, France and North Korea have intercontinental ballistic missiles.

In its armoury, India currently has Agni-1 with 700 km range, Agni-2 with a 2,000-km range, Agni-3 and Agni-4 with 2,500 km to more than 3,500-km range.

The first test of Agni-5 was conducted on April 19, 2012, the second on September 15, 2013, the third on January 31, 2015 and the fourth on December 26, 2016.

The fifth test was held on January 18. All the five trials were successful.

-- PTI

13:49  Stop self-doubting ladies, we have enough people doing that to us, says Priyanka:  
Priyanka Chopra says women have "always been treated as second-class citizens" and unlike men, they are forced to adhere to certain standards of beauty.
  
The 35-year-old star believes rather than submitting to the societal norms, women should focus on loving themselves and being confident in their own skin. 

"We've always been told that only one of us can win and only the best one will get the cutest boy and only the best one will get the job, that we spent so much time elbowing each other out of the way, pulling each other down.

"Can we, for a second, love ourselves and say, 'I do not need all of these magazines to tell me how to lose the weight or how should I starve because I wanna please a man?'" Priaynka said in an interview with Allure magazine. 

The actor said people have always doubted women's capability, so they should stop berating their own selves.

"So the next time you see yourself doubting yourself or you look at a picture of yourself and you say, 'Oh my God,' or you wake up in the morning and you say, 'Wow, why do I look like that?'... Whatever that instant might be, the next time you do that for yourself, recognize it," she said. 

"Start with just recognizing what you're doing. That's called self-hate, self-doubt, you're berating yourself. I mean, we have enough people doing that to us anyway. Why do we need to do it to ourselves?"

"Love yourself, ladies. You're your best friend," she added 

The former Miss World believes "beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder", and added that "everyone doesn't look the same way, so the world needs to be trained to see beauty differently".

-- PTI
13:21  GST has raised tax burden on common man: Chidambaram:  
Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram today attacked the government on the first anniversary of the GST regime, claiming it had raised the tax burden on the common man and become a "bad word" among the people. 
  
"The design, structure, infrastructure backbone, rate or rates and implementation of the GST (Goods and Services Tax) were so flawed that GST has become a bad word among business persons, traders, exporters and the common citizens," he told reporters here. 

The only section that appears to be happy about the GST is the tax administration that has acquired extraordinary powers, he added. 

"It is widely perceived that GST has increased the tax burden of the common citizen; it has certainly not reduced the tax burden as was promised," Chidambaram said. 

The senior Congress leader said beginning with the GST Constitution Amendment Bill, every step taken by the BJP government with regard to GST was deeply flawed.

The GST Bills also "ignored the advice" of the chief economic  adviser on many aspects, notably on the rates, he claimed.

-- PTI
13:08  SC to hear crucial Assam NRC issue tomorrow:  
Crucial issues relating to the publication of final draft of Assam's National Register of Citizens would come up before the Supreme Court tomorrow, days after the NRC state coordinator said it would not be possible to release it as scheduled on June 30 due to floods in state.
  
The NRC is being prepared to identify illegal migrants in Assam.

A bench comprising Justices Ranjan Gogoi and Rohinton Fali Nariman, supervising the process related to the work, had earlier ordered that publication of the final draft of the NRC should be completed by June 30 and refused to extend the deadline any further.

However, NRC state coordinator Prateek Hajela on June 28 said the final draft would not be released as scheduled due to the heavy floods in the state's Barak valley. A plea has also been filed in the apex court seeking more time to prepare the final draft.

Hajela had said it would not be possible to publish the draft on June 30 as floods have hit Cachar, Karimganj and Hailakandi districts in the Barak valley, besides parts of Karbi Anglong and Hojai.

The current wave of floods in the state has affected more than five lakh people in seven districts. As many as 25 people have also lost their lives in the floods so far.

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had also recently said that the names of all "genuine Indians" would be incorporated in the list of the state's citizens.

He had also ruled out the possibility of violence after publication of the NRC, saying adequate forces were deployed across the state to deal with any situation.

On March 27, the apex court had refused to extend the deadline for the ongoing process of publication of final draft NRC in Assam and directed its publication by June 30.

The first draft NRC for Assam was published in December end as per the top court's direction to have the first draft by December 31, 2017.

The first draft of the NRC, a list of the state's citizens, was published on the intervening night of December 31 and January 1 where names of 1.9 crore people out of the 3.29 crore applicants were incorporated.

-- PTI
12:53  Prankster calls US President Trump, White House puts him through:  
The president of the United States, one of the most protected people on the planet and among the least accessible to the public, would seem to be a long-shot target for a prank caller looking to have some fun.

But US President Trump, who likes to field his own telephone calls and prefers spontaneity to protocol, is a different breed. So on Wednesday, when a radio shock jock and comedian dialled the White House switchboard impersonating a United States senators aide, he found himself in between barely suppressed giggles and off-colour jokes with his producer patched through to Trump on Air Force One.

Read the full story HERE
12:34  44 killed after bus falls into gorge in Uttarakhand's Pauri Garhwal:  
Forty-four passengers were killed after their bus fell into a gorge in Uttarakhand's Paudi Garhwal district this morning. Three are critically injured.
The accident happened on the Pipali-Bhoan motorway in Pauri Garhwal's Nainidanda block. The police and a team from the National Disaster Response Force are engaged in rescue operations.

According to reports, about 45 passengers were travelling in the mini bus which was headed for Ramnagar from Bhoan. The reason for the accident isn't known yet.

The injured were rushed to the hospital. The number of casualties is expected to rise, said Garhwal commissioner Dilip Jawalkar.

Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat offered his condolences to the families of those killed.
12:12  GST has not delivered on the promises: Congress:  
The Goods and Services Tax has not delivered on the promised formalisation of the economy as yet, criticised the Congress party on Sunday.

This criticism by the Congress comes on the first year anniversary of the implementation of the GST in the country.

The Congress took to Twitter today and in a series to tweet said, "A year into implementation, the GST has not delivered on the promised formalisation of the economy as yet, while glitches have instead increased the demand of cash. #FailedGST"

The party also alleged that the ruling government in the Centre has failed in fulfilling the promises, made during the introduction of the GST.

"The huge value of GST, simplicity and ease of compliance & administration has failed. The GST has been largely ineffective in implementation with stacked refunds and cumbersome GST compliance procedures. #FailedGST," the party further tweeted.

GST was rolled out in July last year, after months of deliberation.

Launched on the midnight on June 30 by Prime Minister Modi and the then President Pranab Mukherjee, the taxation scheme aimed at bringing all taxes into a single window along the lines of the 'One Nation - One Tax - One Market' goal.

However, GST has been criticised time and again by the Opposition for its negative impact on small traders and Small and Medium Enterprises.

-- ANI
11:51  Money in Swiss banks: India moves to 73rd place, UK remains on top:  
India has moved up to 73rd place in terms of money parked by its citizens and companies with Swiss banks, while the UK remains on the top.
 
India had slipped to 88th place with a 44 per cent plunge in such funds during 2016, but the latest data from the Swiss National Bank shows an increase of over 50 per cent during 2017 to CHF 1.01 billion (about Rs 7,000 crore).
Pakistan is now placed one place higher than India at 72nd position, down one slot, after 21 per cent dips in funds from that country in Swiss banks during 2017.
The funds, described by SNB as 'liabilities' of Swiss banks or 'amounts due to' their clients, are official figures disclosed by Swiss authorities and do not indicate to the exact quantum of the much-debated alleged black money held in famed safe havens of Switzerland.

The official figures, disclosed annually by Switzerland's central bank, also do not include the money that Indians, NRIs or others might have in Swiss banks in the names of entities from different countries.

It has been often alleged that Indians and other nationals seeking to stash their illicit wealth abroad use multiple layers of various jurisdictions, including tax havens, to shift the money in Swiss banks.

The funds officially held by Indians with banks in Switzerland now accounts for only 0.07 per cent, though up from 0.04 per cent a year ago, of the total funds kept by all foreign clients in the Swiss banking system, as per an analysis of the latest figures compiled by the SNB as on 2017-end.
India was placed at 75th position in 2015 and at 61st in the year before, though it used to be among top-50 countries in terms of holdings in Swiss banks till 2007. The country was ranked highest at 37th place in the year 2004.
The total money held in Swiss banks by foreign clients from across the world rose by about 3 per cent to CHF 1.46 trillion (about Rs 100 lakh crore) in 2017.

-- PTI
11:13  Amarnath Yatra from Jammu resumes after a day:  
After remaining suspended for a day due to inclement weather, the Amarnath Yatra resumed today, as the fourth batch of 6,877 pilgrims left for the twin base camps in Kashmir, officials said.
  
The pilgrims, including 1,429 women and 250 sadhus, left the Bhagwati Nagar base camp here in the morning for Nunwan-Pahalgam and Baltal base camps in 229 vehicles under tight security arrangements, they said.

The yatra from Jammu was allowed to resume after traffic on the Jammu-Srinagar national highway was restored. Traffic on the highway was suspended yesterday as a precautionary measure due to threat of floods in the Valley.

As the water level in the Jhelum river started receding, the authorities decided to allow the pilgrims from the Bhagwati Nagar base camp to join the yatra. 

Among the fourth batch, 4,087 pilgrims have preferred the 36-km traditional Pahalgam track in Anantnag district, the others have opted the shorter 12-km Baltal route in Ganderbal district. 

Despite incessant rains, the pilgrimage to the 3,880 metre-high cave shrine of Amarnath in south Kashmir Himalayas commenced on June 28 after several hours of delay, but faced frequent disruptions owing to continuous rainfall. 

The 60-day yatra is scheduled to conclude on August 26 coinciding with the 'Raksha Bandhan' festival.

-- PTI
11:05  Mandsaur rape: Don't want compensation, only justice, says father of victim:  
Father of the eight-year-old Mandsaur rape victim has demanded death sentence for the accused.

Speaking to ANI, the father said that he wants nothing, except justice for his daughter.

"I do not want any compensation. I just want the accused to be hanged till death," he said.

Meanwhile, Women and Child Development Minister Archana Chitnis said that Rs 5 lakh has been transferred to the victim's father account and the investigation is underway to nab the perpetrators.

"The chief minister has transferred Rs 5 lakh to the victim's father's account. Hope police find the accused very soon so that can be hanged. The state government will take care of her health and education," Chitnis said.

On Saturday, a Special Investigation Team had been constituted to investigate the rape of an eight-year-old girl here, the police said.

The minor girl was abducted from her school in Hafiz Colony and raped at her house on June 26.

Two accused in the case have been arrested.

Superintendent of MY Hospital, where the minor girl is undergoing treatment, told media that the victim is out of danger.

-- ANI
10:28  At least I believe my ancestors were not apes: Union Min:  
Union minister Satyapal Singh on Saturday stood by his claim that Charles Darwin's theory of evolution of man was "scientifically wrong" and said that as a science student, he believes that his "ancestors were not apes".
   
The junior minister in the HRD ministry denounced those who attacked him over his comments and said "it's not scientific temper to condemn the point of view of another person".
 
"I am a science student and I have completed my PhD in Chemistry. Who all were the ones speaking against me? And, how many people stood by me? We should be compelled to think. We get scared of the press. If not today, tomorrow. If not tomorrow, then in 10-20 years, people will accept what I said. At least, I believe that my accentors were not apes," he said at a book launch.   
 
"It's not scientific temper to condemn the point of another person. Give it a thought," the minister added.
Singh had a few months ago said Charles Darwin's theory of evolution was wrong and the changes need to reflect in the school and college curriculum, drawing flak from various quarters. 
The former Mumbai police commissioner said he was "proud to be an educated politician" and it was the "good fortune" of the country that a "nationalist government with a nationalist mindset" is at helm.
 
He said 99 per cent of the universities abroad "misinterpret, mistranslate"  Hinduism. 
 
"I am writing a book... And there will be a chapter on this. We will not take help from any westerner. We will give validations and documentary evidence, and we will prove what we are saying is right. Did any of our sages ask any professor from England to validate his point?" the minister asked.  
The biggest blunder, he added, was that India continued to follow the education system and the mentality of the British. -- PTI 
10:06  GST has brought growth, simplicity: Modi on 'GST day':  
On the first anniversary of the goods and services tax regime, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today hailed the tax as a tool that has brought growth, simplicity and transparency.
 
"It is boosting formalisation, enhancing productivity, furthering 'Ease of Doing Business', benefitting small and medium enterprises," the prime minister tweeted.
In his recent Mann Ki Baat radio address, Modi had described the GST as a fine example of cooperative federalism.
He had termed it as a "festival of honesty" which has ended 'inspector raj' in the country.
In a series of tweets, the prime minister also greeted doctors on Doctors' Day.
"Theirs is one of the noblest professions of humanity. It is gladdening to see Indian doctors distinguishing themselves globally and being at the forefront of pathbreaking research and innovation," he said.
He also wished Chartered Accountants on CA Day.
"Widely recognised for their work and emphasis on corporate governance, the CA community has a vital role in nation building. May the CA community keep contributing towards India's growth," he tweeted. 
09:37  Sri Lanka to move naval unit to Chinese-run Hambantota port:  
Sri Lanka will move its southern naval headquarters to the Hambantota port which is now leased to China, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said on Saturday.
In his talks with Chinese leaders, Wickremesinghe made it clear that the port will not be allowed to be used for any military purposes, the prime minister's office said.
In December last year, Sri Lanka handed over the control of the southern sea port of Hambantota to China on a 99-year lease for USD 1.12 billion, amid concern over Beijing's efforts to expand influence in the region.
Opposition leaders have dubbed the deal as a sell out to China.
Saturday's announcement came amid India's concerns that Hambantota could be used by China for military purposes.
"The Sri Lanka navy is moving its Southern Command to Hambantota. There is no need to be frightened as security of the port will be under the control of the Sri Lanka Navy," the office quoted Wickremesinghe as saying.
The state-run China Merchant Port Holdings last week paid the final payment of USD 585 million out of the USD 1.12 billion price for a 70 per cent stake of the port.
Earlier, China had withheld the Hambantota Port deal's final tranche of USD 585 million to Sri Lanka due to Colombo's objection over its plan to use a man-made island for entertainment purposes, a media report had said.
"Sri Lanka has also informed the Chinese that Hambantota cannot be used for military purposes," the statement said.
The current Sri Lankan military southern command is located at Galle, the southern port.
The Hambantota port will only be used for commercial purposes and was expected to trigger much-needed economic development in the neighbouring districts, the office said.
China is to develop an industrial park in addition to running the port with a joint venture partnered by Sri Lanka Ports Authority.
India in 2014 raised concern with Sri Lanka when a Chinese submarine docked at the Colombo Port.
The Hambantota port was a major Chinese-assisted infrastructure project in the home district of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, whose nearly a decade-long rule was ended by President Maithripala Sirisena in 2015.
Rajapaksa's administration had been criticised heavily for high commercial borrowings from China. -- PTI 
09:28  Aadhaar-PAN linking deadline extended till March 2019:  
The Central Board of Direct Taxes on Saturday extended the deadline for the PAN-Aadhaar linking to March 31 next year.
 
This is the fifth time the government has extended the deadline for individuals to link their Permanent Account Number to their biometric ID, Aadhaar.
 
The policy-making body of the tax department issued an order, under Section 119 of the Income Tax Act, late night, extending the deadline.
The CBDT had last extended the deadline on March 27.
The latest order said the deadline for the PAN-Aadhaar linking for filing I-T returns was being extended after "consideration of the matter".
It is understood that the fresh CBDT order has come against the backdrop of the Supreme Court earlier this year directing extension of the March 31, 2018 deadline for linking Aadhaar card with various other services.
The apex court had ordered that the deadline be extended till the five-judge constitution bench delivers its judgment on petitions challenging the validity of the biometric scheme and the enabling law.
The government has now made quoting of Aadhaar mandatory for filing income tax returns (ITRs) as well as obtaining a new PAN.
Section 139 AA (2) of the Income Tax Act says that every person having PAN as on July 1, 2017, and eligible to obtain Aadhaar, must intimate his Aadhaar number to the tax authorities.
As per updated data till March, over 16.65 crore PANs, out of the total about 33 crore, have been linked with Aadhaar.
The earlier deadlines for linking the two databases were July 31, August 31 and December 31, 2017, March 31 and June 30 this year. -- PTI 
09:22  11 found dead inside house in Delhi's Burari:  
In a shocking incident, 11 bodies were found inside a house in Delhi's Burari on Sunday morning.

According to reports, the bodies were found hanging with their mouths and eyes gagged. 

The dead include seven women and four men of the same family, the police said.

Police teams were at the spot and investigation was underway. 

More details are awaited.

Image: Police outside the house in Burari where 11 people were found dead. Photograph: ANI 
08:30  Surgical strikes sent message to Pak that India can enter Lahore anytime: RSS:  
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh leader Indresh Kumar said that the surgical strikes sent a message to Pakistan that India "can enter Lahore anytime". 
 
Delivering a lecture on the "present situation in the country", he said that security forces eliminated about 300 terrorists under the coalition government in Jammu and Kashmir.
"We formed a government in Kashmir and were able to complete three-four important tasks. Work done... Then we left the government, made a sacrifice," he said.
"In alliance, we had to carry out operations... 250 to 300 terrorists were eliminated. The Army, police, NIA and Intelligence Bureau were given a free hand to destroy the (terror) funding network," Kumar said.
The RSS leader said that the surgical strikes weren't possible without the support of the J&K government. He, however, did not mention the PDP.
"We carried out surgical strikes. It was a message to Pakistan that we can enter Lahore anytime. So, be careful," he said.
Kumar said he dreams of an "Akhand Bharat" and exhorted the audience to "construct a house in Nagpur and another in Lahore or Rawalpindi".
"We pray to God that we breathe our last in an 'Akhand Bharat'," he said.
The RSS leader also said that tomorrow's India would be built on the ideals of RSS founder K B Hedgewar and Dalit icon Dr B R Ambedkar and there would be no discrimination. -- PTI

Stars spotted!  What's this?

What was Suniel Shetty doing in Singapore?
Reader Manish Paranjape sends us a picture from...

More stars spotted

Met a celebrity?
Email us photos & videos