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DD/AIR News

  • The announcement was made by party observer for the state K.C. Venugopal. He said the decision was taken by party President Rahul Gandhi. Meanwhile, Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee President Kamal Nath has been named as the new Chief minister of the newly-elected Congress government in the state. Congress tweeted saying that "Our best wishes to Kamal Nath for being elected CM of Madhya Pradesh. An era of change is upon MP with him at the helm. " Kamal Nath's name was finalised after a string of meetings. His name was announced after a meeting of its MLAs at the party headquarters in Bhopal. Kamal Nath will take oath as Chief Minister on Monday. Briefing the media, he said that the promises made by the Congress in its manifesto will be fulfilled by the new Government.

  • It may have been all Australia before the Lunch break, but India rallied back in style in the 2nd session  by taking three Australian wickets in quick succession.  Openers Marcus Harris  and Aaron Finch gave a good start to Australian innings on day one of the Perth test. Harris and Finch added 112 runs for the first wicket. Opting to bat, Australia dominated the first session as their openers kept the Indian seamers on their toes. In the 2nd session India bounced back and took 3 wickets. Jasprit Bumrah gave India breakthrough by removing Aaron Finch of 50 runs. Umesh Yadav dismissed Usman Khawaja for 5 runs. Marcus Harris played a gritty knock of 70 runs before being removed by Hanuma Vihari. In the final session India took 3 more wickets to share day's honour with Australia.  At the close of the play, Tim Paine and Pat Cummins were at the crease.

  • The deep depression over southeast Bay of Bengal moved rapidly north-northwestwards during past 6 hours and is very likely to intensify further into a Cyclonic Storm during the next 12 hours. Expecting heavy rainfall and high winds, all are advised to stay off from the coastal areas. Those, who are out in deep sea areas are advised to return to the coast.

  • "The board deliberated on the governance framework of the Reserve Bank and it was decided that the matter required further examination," the RBI said in a statement. RBI's governance is a major bone of contention between the government and the bank, which led Urjit Patel to quit as RBI Governor on Monday. The government wants RBI to be driven by the board instead of the Governor, as is currently the case. Under the current structure, the board has 18 directors including four Deputy Governors, four Directors from the RBI's local boards, two government nominees and others appointed by the government. Many of these appointments to the board are political. With non-technical people (non-economists) as Directors in the board of the central bank, the final word on any economic policy by the RBI is that of the Governor. However, the Central government wants the RBI Governor to be accountable to the board. The board also reviewed other contentious issues like liquidity in the economy and credit in the market which soured the relationship between the government and the central bank over the past several months, with the government wanting the RBI to intervene. "The board reviewed, inter alia, the current economic situation, global and domestic challenges, matters relating to liquidity and credit delivery to the economy and issues related to currency management and financial literacy," the statement said. It was the first board meeting under the chairmanship of Shaktikanta Das, who was earlier Economic Affairs Secretary in the Finance Ministry and one who steered the monetary situation in the country post-demonetisation. The draft report on Trend and Progress of Banking in India (2017-18) was also discussed at the meet, the RBI said.

  • In Sri Lanka, the weeks long political stalemate is nearing its conclusion amidst indication that Mahinda Rajapaksa and his government may resign to make way for reinstatement of United National Front led by Ranil Wickremsinghe. A meeting was held by President Maithripala Sirisena on Thursday night with Wickremsinghe, which was termed positive by a UNF leader. The leader said that they are hopeful of Wickremsinghe's appointment as Prime minister and their plan is to present a vote of account next week once their government is in place. However, President still has reservations over Wickremsinghe's appointment and he will have to look for working arrangements, in case he is left with no alternative.  

  • According to a press release issued by the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology, the decision was taken at the Cabinet meeting held in Kathmandu on Monday. In Nepal using and carrying Indian currency of more than Rs 100 denomination is illegal. After demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes  by the Indian Government, the Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) had issued a circular in November 2016 and declared  using, carrying or keeping Indian currency above Rs 100 denomination illegal in Nepal.

  • When the Lok Sabha reassembled at noon, there were heated arguments between the Treasury and Opposition benches over the Rafale deal. Citing the Supreme Court order, ruling BJP members accused the Congress of misleading the country on the deal.  Home Minister Rajnath Singh alleged that Congress President not only misled the country over the issue but tried to tarnish the country’s image at the international level. Singh said the apex court has clearly stated that the deal is a financial advantage to the country and there is no fault in the procurement process.  He said Rahul Gandhi should tender an apology in the House as he tried to dent the government’s image.    As noisy scenes continued, Speaker Sumitra Mahajan adjourned the House for the day. Earlier, as the House met for the day, the Congress and BJP members were on their feet raising slogans against each other. Citing the Supreme Court's Judgement,  Union Minister Narendra Singh Tomar alleged that Congress President Rahul Gandhi has made baseless allegations about the deal. AIADMK members were in the well against the construction of dam across Cauvery River while TDP members raised slogans seeking financial benefits to Andhra Pradesh under the State Reorganization Act of 2014.  Amid noisy scenes, the Speaker had adjourned the House till noon. In the Rajya Sabha, ruling BJP MPs demanded that Gandhi should apologize for levelling charges of corruption against the government in the Rafale deal.  Finance Minister Arun Jaitley asked the Chair to suspend the Question Hour and allow a discussion on the matter. On the other hand, Congress members continued their protest against the deal and demanded a JPC probe into it. AIADMK and DMK members were also in the well seeking protection for Cauvery delta farmers. Amid continued sloganeering between the Treasury and Opposition benches, Deputy Chairman Harivansh adjourned the House for the day.  Earlier, the House was adjourned following protests till 11:30 AM minutes after meeting for the day at 11 AM. Both the Houses of Parliament will now meet on Monday after the weekend holidays.  

  • A three-judge bench headed by the Chief Justice of India, Ranjan Gogoi dismissed a bunch of petitions saying that there is no question on the need for fighter jets for the Indian Air Force, nor the suitability of Rafale fighter jets. The bench said that, the Apex court cannot sit as an appellate authority on each and every defence Procurement. The bench also said that it doesn't find any material to show that there has been commercial favouritism. Welcoming the Supreme Court's decision on the Rafale deal, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said the Congress President tried to mislead public for political benefit, and maligned India's image globally. Demanding an apology from Rahul Gandhi, the Home Minister said that the allegations were just a tool to gain political mileage. Union Law Minister Ravishankar Prasad also welcomed the Supreme Court's decision, saying the Rafale fighter jets are in the interest of the country. He expressed hope that, with this decision, all the issues created by the opposition on the Rafale deal will now end. BJP President Amit Shah has welcomed the judgement of the Supreme Court. He said that the truth has won. He said that the people were being misled by unfortunately the country's oldest party and its a slap on politics of lies. He said that Rahul Gandhi should reveal what was the source of information on basis of which he made such big allegations. Information and Broadcasting Minister Rajyavardhan Rathore has hailed the Supreme Court's decision on the Rafale deal. In a tweet, the minister said that --- in a unanimous judgment the Supreme Court has dismissed any probe into the Rafale Deal and that has vindicated the Government's stand. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court's decision on the Rafale deal dominated proceedings in Parliament, as well. As soon as the Apex Court delivered the crucial judgment, the BJP members in Lok Sabha started demanding an apology from Congress President Rahul Gandhi. Various issues, including Rafale deal, clouded the proceedings in the Lower House, forcing adjournments. The Lok Sabha was then adjourned for the day, till Monday. In the Upper House of Parliament, too, the BJP members sought an apology from Congress President Rahul Gandhi. BJP's Arun Jaitley demanded that a discussion on the matter should immediately be taken up in Rajya Sabha. Rajya Sabha witnessed uproarious scenes, and was forced to be adjourned repeatedly, and finally for the day, till Monday.

  • Mohammad Mohamood Ali, also sworn in as a Minister along with him at a simple ceremonial programme held on the lawns of Raj Bhavan in Hyderabad. KCR took the oath of office and secrecy at 1.25 minutes in the name of the God in Telugu while Mr Ali took oath in Urdu in the name of Allah.    This is the second time that KCR became the chief minister of the youngest state of the country. KCR family members besides former ministers of his cabinet, who is who of the state including sitting high court judges, attended the ceremony.   It may be recalled that the TRS won over two-thirds of the 119 seat state Assembly when the youngest state of the country gone for an early-poll. According to KCR, a full-fledged cabinet will be formed in a few days to come.    

  • For the Prime Minister, December 11 was a busy working day like any other.  Reaching Parliament at 10.30 am, in his customary interaction with media, as in any Parliament session, PM Modi called for healthy debate and discussion on all subjects of concern to the people.  He attended the Lok Sabha, which was adjourned for the day after obituary references to former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee, and former Union Minister Ananth Kumar.  In the afternoon, the Prime Minister reviewed development work in the state of Uttar Pradesh. He will be launching development projects in Rae Bareli and Prayagraj on the 16 December. Thereafter, he attended to other important official meetings. Late in the evening, PM Narendra Modi gave finishing touches to his speech at the Partners' Forum for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health. 12 December, too, began quite early, with this event getting underway at 9 AM at Vigyan Bhavan. From Vigyan Bhawan, the PM drove straight to Parliament. After the customary meeting with senior party members on Parliament matters, PM Modi reviewed the progress of development works in Kalyan and Pune in Maharashtra. He will be visiting these areas on the 18 December to launch these projects. He also finalized the plan for a video call with booth level workers in Kerala and Tamil Nadu on the 14 and 15 December.

  • Kovind, who is in Myanmar to continue India's high level bilateral engagements under the rubric of the 'Act East' and the 'Neighbourhood First' policies, said that India is at the cusp of a transformative change. "I bring you good wishes of 1.3 billion citizens of friends and families in India," he said while speaking at the Indian community reception in Yangon. Myanmar has embarked on an exciting but challenging journey, he said. "I am here to reassure Myanmar that India is always ready to help it fulfil its aspirations for a brighter future. "India and Myanmar must pair hard infrastructure being created with soft infrastructure of legal arrangements, like a motor vehicle agreement, for people to travel legally and easily. This will help realise the full potential of our projects," Kovind said. He said that today, India is full of opportunities for business, social enterprise and cultural links. "I invite each one of you to join us in this journey, and to make this partnership more meaningful," the president said. "Our Northeast and Myanmar's North West share strong commonalities of culture, language and traditions. These regions are central to our bilateral vision for growth, prosperity and security. "This is my first visit to Myanmar. It is both a pilgrimage and a homecoming. This country has a proud, millennia-old tradition of Buddhist thought and philosophy. It is home to one of the leading schools of Buddhism," Kovind said. Myanmar, like India, is an enormously diverse country, with different ethnicities and faiths co-existing. The two countries shared civilisational ethos shows that all faiths share fundamental truths, which guide all, he said. "Myanmar is undergoing multiple and simultaneous transitions towards democracy, peace and economic development. Success here, under the courageous leadership of State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, is important for this country, South Asia and the ASEAN family. "As a sister democracy and a civilisational friend, India is fully conscious of the challenges Myanmar faces. We are ready to offer Myanmar any assistance in addressing the challenges of national reconciliation, reconstruction and economic development," Kovind said. The central tenets of India's foreign policy are guided by recognition that the road to development runs through the region. The "Act East" and "Neighbourhood First" policies are key aspects of India's foreign policy and Myanmar is a focus country in both, the president said. "We share our expertise with neighbours and others by building infrastructure, creating capacity, and setting up institutions. We do so in the conviction that a peaceful, prosperous and stable neighbourhood is in everyone's interest," he added. 

  • This is for the second time the apex court has extended the deadline. Earlier, the deadline was shifted from November 25 to December 15. Earlier, the apex court had fixed December 15 as the last date to submit claims and objections for the 40 lakh applicants who were left out of the final NRC draft. Till now, only around 14.8 lakh claims have been filed, indicating the difficulty being faced by the excluded in getting their names in the NRC list. The date for commencement of verification has also been postponed to February 15 from February 1.  

  • Finance Minister Arun Jaitley termed Das, as a person with "right credentials" for the RBI top job.  Speaking on appointment of Shaktikanta Das as the new RBI Governor, NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant has said that Shaktikanta Das's experience will add immense value to RBI as far as its independence and autonomy is concerned.

  • Speaking at Swayamvar ceremony held at Janakpur in Nepal to celebrate Vivah Panchami, the wedding of Lord Rama and Goddess Sita, he said Ram Katha ties the people of India and Nepal with a single thread. He said that Ayodhya and Janakpur cities are inseparable link to this glorious story. Yogi Adityanath said he is feeling blessed to get the opportunity to offer prayers at Janaki temple on the auspicious occasion of Vivah Panchami. Nepal's Culture Minister Rabindra Prasad Adhikari, Governor and Chief Minister of Province 2, Indian Ambassador to Nepal Manjeev Singh Puri, Sadhus and other dignitaries also attended Vivah Panchami celebrations at famous Rangbhoomi in Barahbigha ground. Earlier Yogi Adityanath met Chief Minister of Province 2, Lalbabu Raut and senior leaders from Center and Province 2. He also joined Bhandara, the community lunch with Sadhus, Saints, dignitaries and representatives of various sections of Nepalese society. Yogi Aditynath also paid courtesy call to Governor of Province 2,  Ratneshwar Lal Kayastha. In the morning,  soon after arriving at Janakpur he visited famous Janaki temple and sought blessings of Mata Janaki. Vivah Panchami is observed on the fifth day of Shukla paksha in Margashirsha month of Hindu calendar.According to mythology Lord Rama married Goddess Sita on Vivah Panchami. The festival is observed in Janakpur every year to mark the occasion. Yogi Adityanath returned home in the evening after his successful visit to Janakpur.

  • World number six Sindhu, who lost last year’s final to Yamaguchi in Dubai, saved two game points in the opening game and took the match in 55 minutes, reports Efe. “It’s important to start well in the group stage. I was nervous towards the end of the first game but once I won that game I played better,” the 23-year-old Indian Olympic silver medallist said after the match, according to an official BWF report. Sindhu trailed in both games but absorbed the pressure and fought back each time with a mix of aggression and patience. Yamaguchi said she may have been too defensive against her opponent and would be hoping to repeat last year’s performance, when she went on to win the tournament despite a first-round loss to Sindhu. The top two players from the two groups will qualify for the semi-finals, after which a knockout draw will be held. Sindhu and Yamaguchi have been clubbed together with world number one Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei and the United States’ Beiwen Zhang in Group A.

  • The Indian Navy on Wednesday nducted the 'Deep Submergence Rescue Vehicle' into service at the Western Naval Command in Mumbai. Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Sunil Lanba inducted the vehicle into the Navy.  The Navy successfully concluded maiden trials of the Deep Submergence Rescue Vehicle on October 15.  The DSRV has the capability to rescue personnel from a distressed submarine up to a depth of 650 metre and it is the latest in terms of technology and capabilities. The vehicle can rescue as many as 14 people in one dive. Speaking on the occasion, Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba said its a landmark event and congratulates all for the successful sea trials of DSRV.  

  • President Ram Nath Kovind and first lady arrived at the Yangon International Airport on Wednesday on their second leg of two cities visit to Myanmar. Chief Minister of Yangon along with other dignitaries welcomed the Indian President. Earlier, President Ram Nath Kovind, dedicated the Advanced Centre for Agricultural Research and Education to the people of Myanmar.  It was established as per an MOU between both the countries for research and capacity building of Myanmar students and scientists. The programme is run by IARI. The President also dedicated the Rice Bio-Park to the people of Myanmar. He said India is happy to share its experience of using rice biomass to enhance livelihoods of farmers of Myanmar and wished the project all success. A mobile app has also been launched for welfare of farmers.  

  • Veteran dragflick expert Gonzalo Peilat (17th, 48th minutes) converted a couple of penalty corners for Argentina. England, who were impressive with their free flowing attacks and well organised defence, scored field goals through Barry Middleton (27th), Will Calnan (44th) and Harry Martin (49th). It was an end to end affair with plenty of scoring chances for both teams although England enjoyed a slightly upper hand for the most part.  Although England dominated the opening quarter, Peilat gave Argentina the lead with a powerful dragflick. England goalkeeper George Pinner had dived the correct way but was beaten by the sheer power in Peilat's shot. England almost struck back in the next minute but an excellent save by goalkeeper Juan Manuel Vivaldi at his near post maintained Argentina's lead. There were chances at both ends and Vivaldi was soon forced to make another good save to keep Argentina ahead. But the relentless England pressure finally bore fruit when Middleton scored a field goal with an excellent finish after a well worked build-up. Calnan, who had to sit out for a while after picking up a yellow card, made amends soon after coming back in when he beat Vivaldi at his near post with a powerful finish.  England had a narrow escape a couple of minutes into the final quarter when the umpire initially awarded a penalty stroke to Argentina which was changed to a penalty corner for the South Americans after a review. But if the English players had heaved a sigh of relief, it turned out to be temporary as Peilat scored with another powerful dragflick. England struck back at the other end in the very next minute when Martin scored to make the issue safe for the European powerhouse. Argentina seemed to disintegrate under pressure in the closing minutes with two of their players sent off for yellow card offences as England clinched a well deserved victory. India will face the Netherlands on Thursday, while Germany will meet Belgium.  The semi-finals will be played on Saturday, with the final is slated for Sunday.

  • Chivai Kasuwa never thought she'd become a model and take part in a beauty contest. But the third-year university student is on a mission - to educate people around the world about albinism. "I feel like people don't understand what albinism actually is, and they don't know how to treat it, so a lot of ignorance comes through it, a person would come to be and just start touching me, like pulling my skin and pinching me. Guys would come to me and ask me if I'm with you am I going to get cured or what are you, like so many weird questions, the experiences can be violent... but it's mostly ignorance," she shared. Albinism - a rare, genetically inherited condition in which people are born with no pigment in their skin, hair and eyes - is more prevalent in sub-Saharan Africa than anywhere else in the world. With 1 in 1400 people affected in Tanzania, and 1 in 1000 in Zimbabwe, according to the United Nations. Across Africa, albinos are often shunned, ostracized, beaten and even killed. In some countries, their body parts are used for magic potions. But at this recent contest in Nairobi, organizers from the Albinism Societies of Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania said they're trying to change perceptions.Chair of Albinism Society of Kenya, Isaac Mwaura said, "This region has lost over 200 people with Albinism as a result of the killings. So I really thought that maybe people need to understand who we are to see the true colors of ourselves and also ensure that persons with albinism have an equal opportunity especially in a self definition activity in regards to the arts for example in terms of beauty." 30 participants - including Kasuwa - competed, taking center stage in an array of costumes. She didn't get the top crown, but hopes to become an ambassador for people living with albinism Helping to spread the pageant's message of 'accept me, include me, I can'.

  • Some 190 countries are meeting in Katowice, Poland to agree a "rule book" on implementing the Paris climate deal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, in what has been billed as the most important U.N. conference since that pact was agreed in 2015. Expectations for the talks are low: political unity built in Paris has been shattered by populist governments that have placed national agendas before collective action. "We urge all parties to engage constructively in the coming days in order to overcome remaining differences and to deliver the Paris Agreement work programme," EU climate chief Miguel Arias Canete said as he took his turn in the national statements section following the official opening of the high-level segment. French and German environment ministers talked of the need to reconcile climate policies that will reduce emissions with the needs of citizens. "I am convinced that climate action can only be successful if we take the concerns of people working and living in the coal region seriously. Policymakers must offer them alternatives specially in structurally weak regions," said German minister Svenja Schulze. "We have to be clear, the yellow vests movement in France expresses anger, the anger goes far beyond the question of climate," France's Minister of Ecological and Inclusive Transition Brune Poirson said, referencing the anti-government protesters whose action was sparked by fuel tax hikes.

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