News brief

87th Oscar awards ceremony begins

23 02 2015


87th Oscar awards ceremony begins in Los Angles

Feb 23

The 87th Annual Academy Awards or the Oscars are being held at Hollywood’s 3,300-seat Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles today. Among the awards announced, black-and-white Polish film ‘Ida’ has bagged the award for the best foreign language film. The movie was directed by Pawel Pawlikowski.

The Phone Call won the Oscar for Best Live Action Short Film. The best supporting actor award was bagged by JK Simmons for the film, Whiplash. Patricia Arquette claimed the best supporting actress award for the movie, ‘Boyhood’.

Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1 has bagged the award for the best documentary short subject.

First session of newly-elected Delhi Assembly starts

23 02 2015


The first session of the sixth Delhi Legislative Assembly is beginning today. During the two-day session, a senior member of the House will be nominated as the pro- tem Speaker for administering the oath to the newly elected MLAs. The Speaker and the Deputy Speaker for the assembly will also be elected during the two-day sitting. Delhi Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung will address the House tomorrow.


Budget Session of Parliament begins

23 02 2015

Feb 23

The budget session of Parliament is beginning today. The session will begin with President Pranab Mukherjee’s address to members of both houses of Parliament. Important legislations which are scheduled to be tabled during the session are bills replacing ordinances on raising the foreign investment limit in insurance, auctioning coal mines and changing the rules of land acquisition.

The budget session includes 44 items of financial, legislative and non-legislative business.

The Juvenile Justice (Care and protection of Children) Bill, The Labour Code on Wages Bill , The small factories (regulation of employment and condition of services) Bill, and The Labour Code on Industrial Relations Bill will also come up during the session.

Meanwhile, the Government has sought cooperation from party leaders in both the Houses for smooth functioning of the session. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that the people of the country look at the budget session with lots of hopes and expectations. He said yesterday that it is the collective responsibility of all parties and leaders to enable the people fulfill their hopes and aspirations through proper functioning of both the Houses of Parliament.

He was addressing a meeting of the leaders of various parties in both the Houses which was convened by the Government for mutual consultations on the Budget session. Mr Modi assured the leaders that all the issues and concerns raised by them will be discussed in an appropriate manner keeping in view their importance and priority.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu also sought cooperation from all party leaders in both the Houses of Parliament for smooth functioning of the Budget session. He said that this session will focus on financial matters, general budget, railway budget and the next priority will be given to legislate the Ordinances.

He said that the Government is ready to discuss any matter in Parliament, particularly those related to the Ordinances. Mr Naidu also said that he met Congress president Sonia Gandhi yesterday morning and requested her to extend support to run the Parliament smoothly.

The Congress has made it clear that it will not support any anti-people legislation in the Budget session. After the meeting, Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad said, the party will not support the government on any ordinances, or bills, which are not going to help the farmers or the downtrodden.

AIR correspondent reports, over thirty leaders from both the Houses expressed their views with most of them highlighting the need for smooth functioning of Parliament to enable discussion on all issues of concern both for the Government and the Opposition.

Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan also held a meeting of leaders of parties in the house last evening to ensure its smooth functioning. The first part of the budget session will continue till March 20. The second part will commence after a month-long recess from April 20 and conclude on May 8. The Rail Budget will be presented on February 26th, Economic Survey on February 27th and General Budget on February 28th.

Anna Hazare to sit on protest in Delhi

23 02 2015

Anna Hazare to sit on protest in Delhi against Land acquisition Ordinance

Feb 23

Veteran social activist Anna Hazare will sit on a protest at Jantar Mantar from today against the ordinance on Land Acquisition Bill. A group of farmers who began marching from Palwal in Haryana on Friday will join Hazare at the venue tomorrow to demand withdrawal of amendments to the Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013. Ekta Parishad, who organized the march, said the group has already reached Badkal in Faridabad.

While the government claimed that the amendments are aimed at speeding up development projects, Hazare has condemned the move saying it will end up benefitting corporates. Activists Rajendra Singh, Aruna Roy, Medha Patekar, P V Rajagopalan and former RSS ideologue K Govindacharya are also likely to join Hazare.

Bangladesh: Death toll 41 in ferry mishap

23 02 2015

Feb 23

In Bangladesh, the death toll in the ferry which capsized in river Padma in Manikganj on the Paturia-Daulatdia route has risen to 41. The ferry carrying at least 200 passengers was hit by a fertilizer-laden cargo vessel yesterday. Local people with boats and trawlers joined the rescue and salvage operation soon after the tragedy struck. At least 90 people were either rescued or swam to shore. AIRcorrespondent reports that a Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation boat, which reached the spot last night, is working on pulling up the capsized vessel.

The 41 victims included 7 children and a six-month old infant. 65 passengers are still missing. Rescue operations by the Navy, Coast guard, Fire Service and Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation were going on till late last night..Manikganj Deputy Commissioner Rashida Ferdous said the ferry was packed beyond capacity. The shipping Ministry has formed 2 Committees to probe the incident and asked them to submit their reports within 15 days. The tragedy has occurred hardly six months after a double-decker ferry sunk in the same river at Mawa killing over 100 passengers.

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