470

SC Asks The Army To Provide A Conducive Work Environment For Its Women Officers

New Delhi: The Supreme Court said that the army should provide a conducive work environment for its women officers as it asked the defence ministry to consider a representation by a 39-year-old female lieutenant colonel against her assignment at a place that does not have a crèche.

A bench led by Justice DY Chandrachud was hearing Lt Annu Colonel Dogra’s petition questioning her temporary posting that requires her to travel from Jodhpur to Nagpur to conduct court martial proceedings against an officer. The proceedings in Kamptee (Nagpur) deprive her of the fundamental right of tending to her infant child, she has stated in her petition. Dogra’s husband is also an army officer and is deputy judge advocate general (JAG) in Jodhpur.

469

Defence Ministry Reiterates Rafale Deal Better than 2007; Congress Repeats For JPC

New Delhi: Union defence ministry reiterated its contention that the Rs 59,000-crore Rafale jet fighter deal signed in 2016 was better than the one that had been pursued in 2007 in terms of price, delivery and other terms, as the Congress again demanded a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) to probe the contract.

The Congress based its demand on a report in The Hindu newspaper that claimed the decision by the Narendra Modi government to buy the 36 jets caused the price of each plane to shoot up by 41%.

The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government’s acceptance of the cost of €1.3 billion claimed for the “design and development” of 13 India-Specific Enhancements (ISE), and the distribution of this “non-recurring cost” over 36 instead of 126 bare-bones aircraft was the major reason for the price hike, the report said.

468

New Delhi Rubbishes Pakistan’s Contention That India Has No Role In Afghanistan

New Delhi: The New Delhi has made it clear that Islamabad could not decide the position of another country in regional or global affairs rubbishing Pakistan’s contention that India has “no role” in Afghanistan.

Pakistan Foreign Office spokesman Mohammad Faisal, while responding to a question on US President Donald Trump’s remarks about India playing a role in the war-torn country, had said on Thursday: “India has no role in Afghanistan.”

Reacting to Faisal’s comments, external affairs ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said: “It is not for Pakistan to decide as to what role another country has in regional or global affairs. Pakistan also cannot decide on behalf of an independent and sovereign country, Afghanistan, and dictate to them as to how to conduct their foreign policy.”

450

NIA Raids At Seven Places In Uttar Pradesh And Punjab In Connection With IS Inspired Module

New Delhi: Officials said that the National Investigation Agency (NIA) conducted searches at seven places in Uttar Pradesh and Punjab in connection with its ongoing probe into the Islamic State (IS)-inspired module — Harkat-ul-Harb-e-Islam.

 

On December 28, the NIA announced that it had busted an IS-inspired module consisting of members from Delhi and western Uttar Pradesh. The agency has arrested about a dozen accused in connection with the case. Officials said the module was allegedly headed by a preacher working at a mosque in Amroha, Uttar Pradesh.

“Searches (on Thursday) were conducted at Rampur, Bulandshahr, Meerut, Hapur, Amroha in Uttar Pradesh and Ludhiana in Punjab,” said an agency spokesperson.

NIA officials also rounded up 50-year-old Mohammad Habib, a resident of Kaloli village in Bulandshahr district. The general store owner had spent over 25 years in Saudi Arabia and can be brought to NIA office in Delhi for questioning, an official said.

449

PM Says, 10% Reservation To Poor In The General Category To Usher Social Harmony In Society

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the Constitutional amendment to provide 10 per cent reservation to economically poor in the general category was passed due to the political will of his government and will “usher social harmony” in society.

 

“Implementation of 10% quota in government jobs and education for the economically weaker sections in the general category will usher in social harmony and bridge divisions in society,” Modi said, while addressing a gathering after inaugurating the 1,500 bed Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Institute of Medical Science and Research.

Modi said the reservation will not affect existing social reservations. “The new reservation will be implemented in 40,000 colleges across 900 universities in the country from this academic year. The number of seats will be increased by 10 per cent,” he said, adding that his government was committed to provide “equal opportunities” to all sections of the society.