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Sunday, 30 December 2012

Subhaditya News Channel Presents Political News of 2012 by Looking Back all Main Political News Throughout the Year

Collage Of Political News Pictures of 2012

3D Pictures of Subhaditya Political New Channel

Top Political  News Of 2012:

Supreme Court cancels all 122 2G licences given by A Raja


Supreme Court cancels all 122 2G licences given by A Raja

Dealing a major blow to the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government the Supreme Court on Thursday cancelled all 122 telecom licences allotted under the 2G spectrum on or after January 10, 2008. All additional spectrum given to incumbents on or after January 10, 2008 have also been cancelled.

While cancelling the licences the Supreme Court ruled that 85 out of the 122 licences were outside the eligibility criteria for allocation. The apex court said that the 122 licences for 2G spectrum were granted in an arbitrary and unconstitutional manner.

The licences, which were allotted by former telecom minister A Raja, will be cancelled in four months from now and the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) must go in for a fresh issue of licences during this period, the apex court observed. 

6 March: Election results for five state assemblies are announced;


6 March: Election results for five state assemblies are announced; 

Samajwadi Party (Uttar Pradesh), Bhartiya Janata Party (Goa), Indian National Congress (Manipur & Uttarakhand), Shiromani Akali Dal - BJP combine (Punjab) emerge winners:
 The only good news came from Manipur, where the Congress was set to sweep and retain power.

Congress leaders admitted they were highly surprised as results from five state elections showed that Congress faced defeats in Punjab and Goa and a poor showing in UP.

The Congress was, in fact, on top in Uttarakhand but short of an outright majority.

Congress leaders quickly rushed to insulate their star campaigner in UP and general secretary Rahul Gandhi from criticism, saying that a wide variety of factors were to blame for the multiple disaster.

The results in Punjab, where the Akali Dal-BJP combine is set to retain power, a first in the state for any ruling party, were "extremely baffling", Congress chief spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said.

Political pundits and opposition activists heaped scorn on the Congress and its leadership.

A Congress source admitted that the results were "a major blow" and were partly a result of the corruption charges faced by the Congress-led government of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

The source said the Congress also blundered by injecting "communal politics" towards the end of campaign in Uttar Pradesh when it promised to reserve special job quotas for Muslims.

Apart from Uttar Pradesh, where Rahul Gandhi's 200-plus election rallies were expected to give the party a major boost, the Congress was also stunned that it was unable to dislodge the Akali-BJP combine in Punjab.

The Congress-led government was expected to be voted out in Goa but was in the reckoning for power in BJP-ruled Uttarakhand, though not in the manner it would have desired.

Insurgency-hit Manipur was its only saving grace, with the Congress-led government getting an emphatic mandate for five more years, decimating a coalition of several opposition parties.

Dinesh Trivedi steps down as Railways Minister after pressure from TMC

18 March: Dinesh Trivedi steps down as Railways Minister after pressure from TMC

Calcutta High Court strikes down Singur Land Act

Calcutta High Court strikes down Singur Land Act

 In a setback to the Mamata Banerjee government, a Division Bench of the Calcutta High Court on Friday struck down the Singur Land Rehabilitation and Development Act, 2011, terming it “unconstitutional and void.”

The law was enacted by the Trinamool Congress-led government to return a portion of the land acquired for the Tata Motors’ small car factory at Singur to “unwilling farmers” — in fulfilment of a key poll promise.

The Bench of Justices Pinaki Chandra Ghose and Mrinal Kanti Chaudhuri set aside the order of single judge I. P. Mukerji who had ruled that the Act was “constitutional and valid.”

Kalyan Banerjee, Trinamool Congress MP and one of the lawyers for the government, said the State would appeal against the order in the Supreme Court

In a setback to the Mamata Banerjee government, a Division Bench of the Calcutta High Court on Friday struck down the Singur Land Rehabilitation and Development Act, 2011, terming it “unconstitutional and void.”

The law was enacted by the Trinamool Congress-led government to return a portion of the land acquired for the Tata Motors’ small car factory at Singur to “unwilling farmers” — in fulfilment of a key poll promise.

The Bench of Justices Pinaki Chandra Ghose and Mrinal Kanti Chaudhuri set aside the order of single judge I. P. Mukerji who had ruled that the Act was “constitutional and valid.”

Kalyan Banerjee, Trinamool Congress MP and one of the lawyers for the government, said the State would appeal against the order in the Supreme Court.

The Bench said the Act “is a law relating to acquisition,” a subject mentioned on the Concurrent List of the Constitution. It held that some sections of the Act were in conflict with the Land Acquisition Act, 1894.

On the question whether the Act fulfilled a public purpose as required in the case of an acquisition by the state, the Bench said: “…the Act cannot be treated as [one] for public purpose when the intention is to return the land to the unwilling landowners/farmers.”

Pranab Mukherjee Sworn In as 13th President of India

Pranab Mukherjee Sworn In as 13th President of India:

Pranab Mukherjee, who has had an active political career spanning five decades, today became the 13th President of India pledging to protect the Constitution and rise above personal or partisan interests.

The 76-year-old leader, who is the first leader from Bengal to become President, was administered the oath of office to "preserve, protect and defend the constitution and law" by Chief Justice of India Sarosh Homi Kapadia at an impressive ceremony in the historic Central Hall of Parliament.

The veteran leader, who had played significant roles in government, party and Parliament in his long political career, took the oath in English in the name of God to a thunderous applause and thumping of desks by those in the packed Central Hall.

Vice President Hamid Ansari, Speaker Meira Kumar, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and outgoing President Pratibha Patil, Cabinet Ministers, leaders of opposition, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Governors, Chief Ministers, MPs and diplomats were present in the ceremony.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who announced her party's support to Mukherjee at the last moment, and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, whose party JD(U) broke ranks with NDA, also attended the function.Shortly after he assumed office, it was announced that Omita Paul, his long-time aide, was appointed as Secretary to the President. In his brief acceptance address, he said the principal responsibility of this office is to function as the guardian of the Constitution. 

Assam violence continues, CM blames Centre

Assam violence continues, CM blames Centre :

While the death toll in the ethnic violence in Assam went up to 44, the blame game within the political arena was on. Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi defended his government against allegations that it was slow to react to the rioting, and failed to anticipate the violence. He said a reduction in Central forces has made his task tougher. Gogoi also ruled out resignation, saying that his resignation over the issue was not going to help matters.

Assam violence continues, CM blames Centre

"If they had the intelligence reports, why did they not act on their own then?" Gogoi asked. He further said, "It is my responsibility to get the normalcy back in the area. Had there been full forces there, the situation could have been controlled, I agree. I did not have sufficient forces. I requested the Centre but they had requirements across the country... So I cannot do anything there... It takes time to make movements..."

Assam violence continues, CM blames Centre

Gogoi did not spare the Opposition either, saying that the violence flared up in Assam because of the NDA regime. "This situation has flared up because of the NDA regime. They played the politics. I know Advaniji. They are responsible and they keep accusing us. It is not me who is playing votebank politics. I do not need a single vote of the illegal migrants," he said.

"Media keeps asking me if I am resigning. Will my resigning not create chaos?" he asked, adding, "Like that, administration officers will say they are going to resign. Then security officers will also say they want to resign... This cannot go on... That is not the way," he added.

Assam violence continues, CM blames Centre

In a strong signal to the three-time Chief Minister, the Congress has set up a 10-member coordination committee for the state. Some Congress MPs like Rehman Khan had openly criticised Gogoi, seeking his replacement.

This came even as Congress General Secretary Digvijaya Singh had defended the Assam Chief Minister saying his performance should not be judged by one incident.The violence, that entered the sixth day on Friday, has left over 2 lakh people homeless in 400 villages. The people were taken to relief camps. Gogoi had visited the relief camps in Kokrajhar on Thursday

 GTA members sworn in; Shinde, Mamata assure support

 GTA members sworn in; Shinde, Mamata assure support

Darjeeling, Aug 4 (IANS) As the newly-elected members of the Gorkha Territorial Administration were sworn in Saturday, Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee assured all kinds of support to the newly formed autonomous hill agency.

The Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) Thursday swept the polls to the newly created Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA), capturing all 45 seats in the Darjeeling hills governing council."I congratulate the members of newly formed GTA. I assure all of you that we will extend all kinds of support. We will give you Rs.200 crore every year for next three years. If more money is needed for development, we will give you," said Shinde at the swearing-in ceremony.GJM supremo Bimal Gurung was sworn in as the chief executive of the GTA.

Shinde also assured the new administration that the youngsters of Darjeeling will get relaxations in physical norms laid down for recruitment to posts of constables in central police forces."We will help you in all possible ways," he said.

The long-standing agitation on the demand for forming a separate state out of the northern West Bengal hills has led to loss of many lives over the past two decades, besides hitting hard the region's economic mainstays of tea, timber and tourism.

On July 18 last year, a tripartite agreement was signed between the GJM, and the state and central governments for setting up a new autonomous, elected GTA, a hill council armed with more powers than its predecessor, the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGHC) formed in the late 1980s.

Coalgate: CAG reports slam UPA government, BJP demands PM's resignation

Coalgate: CAG reports slam UPA government, BJP demands PM's resignation:

Three key CAG reports were tabled in Parliament on Friday indicting the government of causing a combined loss of crores of rupees to the national exchequer.

The much-awaited CAG report on coal block allotment said private firms are likely to gain Rs 1.86 lakh crore from coal blocks that were allocated to them on nomination basis instead of competitive bidding.

Coalgate: CAG reports slam UPA government, BJP demands PM's resignation

 The audit report on Delhi airport slams the levy of development fee on passengers and says the civil aviation ministry violated the bid conditions for the benefit of GMR-led DIAL to the tune of over Rs 3,415 crore.

The third CAG report flays post-bid concessions to Reliance Power and says the Anil Ambani-led firm got undue benefit of Rs 29,033 crore when the government allowed use of surplus coal from blocks alloted to Sasan power plant for its other projects.

Reacting to the CAG reports, minister of state in Prime Minister's office V Narayanasamy said that the govt auditor was not following its mandate.

Meanwhile, the BJP demanded resignation of the government alleging that scams in the coal, power and airport sectors had exposed the "loot and plunder" of the country. "

The party sought Prime Minister's resignation as he headed the coal ministry at the time of alleged irregularities.

CAG's coal report

The CAG in its report, tabled in Parliament, names 25 companies including Essar Power, Hindalco, Tata Steel, Tata Power and Jindal Steel and Power which have got the blocks in various states.

"Delay in introduction of the process of competitive bidding has rendered the existing process beneficial to the private companies. Audit has estimated financial gains to the tune of Rs 1.86 lakh crore likely to accrue to private coal block allottees," CAG said in a report on allocation of coal blocks. The CAG said it has arrived at the estimates based on the average cost of production and average sale price of opencast mines of Coal India in the year 2010-11.

"A part of this financial gain could have accrued to the national exchequer by operationalising the decision taken years earlier to introduce competitive bidding for allocation of coal blocks," CAG said.

The auditing body said it is "of strong opinion that there is a need for strict regulatory and monitoring mechanism to ensure that benefit of cheaper coal is passed on consumers".

The concept of allocation of captive coal blocks through competitive bidding was announced in 2004. However, government is yet to finalise the modus operandi of competitive bidding.

Julian Assange: Ecuador grants Wikileaks founder asylum



Julian Assange: Ecuador grants Wikileaks founder asylum:

Ecuador has granted asylum to Wikileaks founder Julian Assange two months after he took refuge in its London embassy while fighting extradition from the UK.

It said his human rights might be violated if he is sent to Sweden to be questioned over sex assault claims.Foreign Secretary William Hague said the UK would not allow Mr Assange safe passage out of the country and the move was also criticised by Stockholm.Ecuador said it would seek to negotiate arrangements for Mr Assange to leave.

"We don't think it is reasonable that, after a sovereign government has made the decision of granting political asylum, a citizen is forced to live in an embassy for a long period," Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino said.Mr Assange took refuge at the embassy in June to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he faces questioning over assault and rape claims, which he denies.Mr Patino had accused the UK of making an "open threat" to enter its embassy to arrest Mr Assange, an Australian national.

Mr Assange said being granted political asylum by Ecuador was a "significant victory" and thanked staff in the Ecuadorean embassy in London.

However, as the Foreign Office insisted the decision would not affect the UK's legal obligation to extradite him to Sweden, Mr Assange warned: "Things will get more stressful now."It was not Britain or my home country, Australia, that stood up to protect me from persecution, but a courageous, independent Latin American nation," said Mr Assange, who watched the announcement with embassy staff in a live link to a press conference in Quito.

Government is badly exposed by the three CAG reports on power, coal and Delhi airport. The magnitude of these scams, according to the CAG report, is between Rs 1.6 and 1.86 lakh crore," BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar told reporters outside Parliament.

1st coalgate FIR to name fraud firms

1st coalgate FIR to name fraud firms:

CBI is giving final touches to its first set of FIRs in the coalgate case, based on findings of the preliminary inquiry which reveal that allocations were made arbitrarily without running elementary checks on claims made by applicants.

"Several companies were given coal blocks simply on the basis of their financial status and without evaluating their competence vis-a-vis others to operate a coal mine," said a source familiar with the findings of the preliminary inquiry which will form the basis of the FIR. In some other cases, the allottees have been found to have fudged facts to bag coal blocks."Some of the beneficiaries misrepresented their stage of network preparedness, joint venture group details and other facts," said the source. "Some other companies were given coal blocks even when they had not been recommended by state governments."

The first set of FIRs will be against six private companies under sections for cheating and forgery, and under the Prevention of Corruption Act against unknown officials. Sources added that more than one company could be named in one FIR. Companies under the scanner are from Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Karnataka, said the source.The FIRs will add to the political temperature over coalgate, although government has distanced itself from those who may be accused by the agency of any wrongdoing. Coal minister Sriprakash Jaiswal had said on Friday that the minister was responsible only for formulation of policy, and that it is the bureaucrats who carry out the implementation.

CBI has questioned screening committee members, secretaries and several joint secretaries, apart from state officials, to learn about the eligibility of companies which are under the scanner and the selection criteria.The agency has examined allocation of 64 coal blocks for which 1,422 applications were received by the coal ministry between 2006 and 2009. "We have primarily zeroed in on at least 24 companies but major anomalies have been found with 6 to 10," the source said.

"There may be some cases where companies may have provided wrong information. It is also possible that there was shortcoming on part of officials in scrutiny (of applications), wittingly or unwittingly. It is a matter of investigation by CBI... The facts will soon come out," Jaiswal had said at a press conference he addressed last Friday, along with finance minister P Chidambaram and law minister Salman Khurshid, to denounce the government auditor's report on allocation of coal blocks.

Coal scam: CBI registers two new cases against private companies:

CBI on Saturday registered two fresh cases against two private companies in its ongoing probe into the coal block allocation scam and carried out searches at seven locations across the country.

The probe agency has charged Grace Industries and Vikash Metals and Powers Limited for alleged misrepresentation of their net worth and joint venture to illegally get coal blocks, CBI sources said.

The sources said raids are being carried out at seven locations in Kolkata, Nagpur, Purulia and few other places.

The Managing Directors of these companies and unknown government officials have been charged with cheating, criminal conspiracy and under sections of Prevention of Corruption Act, they said.

Earlier, the CBI had registered five cases this month in this connection.

The cases were registered against AMR Iron & Steel Private Ltd, JLD Yavatmal Energy Ltd, Navbharat Power Private Limited, Vini Iron & Steel Udyog Ltd and JAS Infrastructure Capital Private Ltd.

President accepts resignation of 6 Trinamool ministers

President accepts resignation of 6 Trinamool ministers:

President Pranab Mukherjee has accepted the resignation of the six Trinamool Congress ministers on the advice of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, official sources said Saturday.

The six were railways minister Mukul Roy, and ministers of state Sudip Bandyopadhyay (health and family welfare) Saugata Roy (urban development), Choudhary Mohan Jatua (information and broadcasting), Sultan Ahmed (tourism) and Sisir Adhikari (rural development).

The ministers had submitted their resignations to the prime minister Friday onthe directive of party supremo and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who withdrew support to the ruling United Progressive Alliance on the issue of economic reforms.

Kejriwal accuses Robert Vadra of corruption in land deals:

 Kejriwal accuses Robert Vadra of corruption in land deals:

Days after floating a political party, activists Arvind Kejriwal and Prashant Bhushan Friday accused Robert Vadra, the son-in-law of Congress president Sonia Gandhi, of corruption in property deals and questionable ties to realty major DLF.

The Congress termed the allegations "wild" while the BJP demanded a probe.

Addressing a press conference here, Kejriwal and his colleague Prashant Bhushan alleged that Vadra bought property in Gurgaon and other places at prices much below market rates and sold them at huge profit.

"Robert Vadra acquired properties worth hundreds of crores (of rupees) for nothing. What is the source of these funds," asked Kejriwal.

He distributed scanned copies of documentary evidence to back his claim and also circulated documents which included the list of 31 properties said to belong to Robert Vadra.

"This massive property buying spree by the son-in-law of the ruling dynasty in the country gives rise to several important questions," he said.

Kejriwal, who launched his political party last week, alleged that the Haryana government had acquired 350 acres of land in Wazirabad in Gurgaon for public interest but gave it away to DLF for building flats, in which Vadra owns seven flats.

Vadra, 43, is married to the Congress president's daughter, Priyanka Gandhi.

"In the last four years, Robert Vadra has gone on a property buying binge and has purchased at least 31 properties, mostly in and around New Delhi, which even at the time of their purchase were worth several hundred crores (of rupees)," Bhushan alleged.

Bhushan said the balance sheets of five companies set up by Vadra and his mother show that the "total share capital of these companies was just Rs.50 lakh".

Team Kejriwal also alleged that all the property transactions were done in Rajasthan, Haryana and Delhi, which are ruled by Congress governments.

Slamming Team Kejirwal for the allegations, Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari termed it "political chicanery of the worst kind".

Tewari said Kejriwal and his associates were "up to same old tricks on the eve of polls. It is clearly evidence that the so-called civil society that is trying to morph as a political outfit is the B team of the BJP. They are the same side of the coin".

"I don't want to dignify with a response, and dismiss (the charges) with the utter contempt they deserve," said Tewari, adding that Vadra has a "right to private remedy" in case he wants to file a complaint.

Congress MP Sandeep Dikshit said the story "had come out in The Economic Times earlier. This is an old strategy of Kejriwal... Vadra had explained the position at the time... He pays his income tax and has a right to live as he wants. It is unfair to drag the Congress into it".

"Why should anyone have to answer to anyone about any property they have unless there is anything illegal about it," Dikshit asked, terming the allegations "wild and completely unfair".

Real estate giant DLF declined to comment.

Law Minister Salman Khurshid termed Kejriwal's outfit "a party without a cause".

He said the attack on private individuals, because of their association with eminent people in the Congress, was in poor taste.

Khurshid said the party would reflect on the matter and give a "befitting reply".

However, BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said the country "is entitled to know what is the source of funding of Vadra's ventures".

"The BJP demands a proper fair investigation of all these things should be done," said Prasad.

He said it should be probed why DLF would "do such charity for Vadra".

"It's a quid pro quo. Wherever there were Congress governments, the company (DLF) got land. It is important to tell the nation what business Robert Vadra's company does."

In a statement, the Delhi government said it "is not in the business of allotting land to private entities" and described Kajeriwal's allegations as "mischievous and misleading".

"The Delhi chief secretary has clarified that the allegation that Delhi Government allotted land to DLF is factually incorrect, mischievous and misleading as alleged by Kejriwal. The allegation is aimed at maligning and vilifying the Delhi Government and has no substance," the statement said

Salman Khurshid's Zakir Hussain Memorial Trust comes under CAG scanner

Salman Khurshid's Zakir Hussain Memorial Trust comes under CAG scanner:

The Comptroller and Auditor General(CAG), in its latest report, has pointed out irregularities in the functioning of Union Law Minister Salman Khurshid's trust, sources said on Friday.

The development comes as a setback to the minister as he and his wife Louise Khurshid, who happens to be the chief functionary officer of NGO Zakir Hussain Memorial Trust, as both of them had vehemently denied any wrongdoing after a Headlines Today-Aaj Tak report highlighted the alleged forgery of Rs.71 lakh, meant for physically challenged people.

The CAG report also points out that despite knowing about the alleged malpractices, the Union Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment did not hesitate in giving funds to Khurshid's NGO in 2011.

The ministry is being audited by the CAG. In the audit it has found that the funds given to the trust did not reach the desired destination. The audit began almost one-month-and-a-half ago and the report would be ready in the next eight months.

Documents procured in course of investigation and a sting operation carried out by Headlines Today-Aaj Tak reporters had revealed that 

Swamy to file plea before Election Commission seeking derecognition of Congress

Swamy to file plea before Election Commission seeking derecognition of Congress:

 Janata Party chief Subramanian Swamy today said that he will be filing a plea before the Election Commission of India seeking derecognition of Congress party for giving an unsecured loan of Rs. 90 crore to Associated Journals.

The Congress admitted on Friday that the party had indeed made "interest-free loans from which no commercial profit has accrued to the Indian National Congress". The statement said, "The Indian National Congress has done its duty... to help initiate a process to bring the newspaper back to health in compliance with the law of the land."

Swamy had alleged that the Gandhis (Sonia Gandhi and Rahul) floated a private company Young Indians to acquire a public limited company Associated Journal, which published National Herald, for Rs. 50 lakhs. The company they acquired, he said had property worth Rs. 1600 crore in Delhi.

Swamy also alleged that the Congress gave an unsecured loan of Rs. 90 crore to Associated Journals.

Congress spokesperson P.C.Chacko on Friday challenged Swamy to prove allegations of wrongdoings against Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi.

He said: "We are now ready, the person (Swamy) who made this allegations should prove it. We have sent a letter from Rahulji's office and that amounts to legal notice.

"Swamy should have the guts to go to court. This is very strange, he wants us to file case against is insensible. If there is a violation of rules, we challenge him to prove it. There is no commercial transaction here, people are trying to create confusion," he stressed.

Joining Swamy's battle with the Congress and the Nehru-Gandhi family, the Bharatiya Janata Party launched a blistering attack and demanded a clarification from the Congress regarding the allegations of fraud levelled by Swamy.

Addressing a press conference in Shimla, senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley said the Congress leadership must explain the issue, and charged the Congress with violating provisions of the Representation of People's Act.

He also highlighted the Associated Journals board document produced by Swamy, which says that AICC gave them an unsecured loan of Rs 90 crores.

Jaitley termed it "grossest impropriety besides being a gross illegality. The country expects a fair answer from Congress on Swamy"s allegations." (ANI)

Arvind Kejriwal targets 'blackmoney list', 'govt incapable of bringing it back'

Arvind Kejriwal targets 'blackmoney list', 'govt incapable of bringing it back':

In his fresh expose against the 'corrupt' in the Indian system, activist-turned-politician Arvind Kejriwal raked up the issue of blackmoney at a press meet in New Delhi on Friday afternoon.

Kejriwal said HSBC's Geneva branch has accounts of 700 Indians. He said France had given this list to the central government five years ago. The figures are till 2006.

Kejriwal said the names include:

1. Mukesh Ambani – Rs 100 crore.

2. Anil Ambani – Rs 100 crore

3. Motech Software Pvt Ltd (Company has shareholding by Mukesh Ambani`s Reliance) – Rs 2100 crore

4. Reliance Industries – Rs 500 crore

5. Late Sandeep Tandon (former IRS officer)– Rs 125 crore. (Kejriwal said Tandon was close to Mukesh Ambani. His two sons are also in the reliance). His wife Anu Tandon has Rs 125 crores too, Kejriwal said. She is the Congress MP from Congress. Kejriwal also said she is a core group member of Rahul Gandhi)

6. Kokila Dhirubhai Ambani has no money but has an account.

7. Naresh Goyal From Jet Airway- Rs 80 crore

8. Dabur Group - 25 Crore

In his last expose on October 31, Kejriwal had termed RIL's D-6 block in the Krishna Godavari (KG) basin deal as a "classic case of crony capitalism" and said both the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and Congress-led UPA governments were responsible.

Asserting that the government is succumbing to illegitimate demands of Reliance Industries, Kejriwal had said Mukesh Ambani is running the country and not Prime
 Minister Manmohan Singh.

He had demanded that Reliance should be stopped from exploiting national wealth and an end should be put to "crony capitalism".

Kejriwal had earlier targetted Congress president Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law Robert Vadra's land deals, the then Law Minister and present External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid of allegedly misusing funds allotted to his NGO and BJP president Nitin Gadkari.

Arvind Kejriwal targets HSBC, Ambani brothers

EXPRESS EXCLUSIVE France hands over list of 700 bank accounts in Switzerland

EXPRESS EXCLUSIVE Black money: Rs 565 cr stashed in Geneva accounts, says report

EXPRESS EXCLUSIVE Govt may move against HSBC, Rs 80 cr mopped up

EXPRESS EXCLUSIVE ‘Massive’ collections in Swiss black money probe

(PTI) In his latest round of allegations, Arvind Kejriwal today targeted multinational HSBC Bank accusing it of indulging in money laundering and claimed Ambani brothers, Naresh Goyal and Congress MP Annu Tandon had parked their blackmoney in its Geneva branch.

Addressing a press conference, Kejriwal and lawyer Prashant Bhushan alleged around Rs 6,000 crore blackmoney was lying in 700 accounts of the Geneva branch of the bank.

They claimed that people who had deposited "small amounts of money" in the bank were raided but "big fish" like Mukesh and Anil Ambani, Naresh Goyal (Jet Airways), Tandon and Burmans (Anand, Pradeep and Ratan) of Dabur were "let off" at the behest of the government.

"Who is running the country? It seems that Ambani is running the country," said Kejriwal, pointing out the silence of Singh.

He also provided statements of three persons, whose names appeared in the list and questioned by Income Tax officials, in which they have told interrogators that HSBC facilitated them opening accounts without them going to Geneva.

The money was handed to over to an agent here and whenever, they wanted to withdraw they used to contact a person in Geneva and the amount was delivered in India, he alleged.

"There is no physical transfer of money. This is money laundering. The statements by the three persons reveal that HSBCis openly and brazenly running a hawala racket in India.

"These statements are enough to arrest HSBC officials. Their operations should be immediately suspended as it is a fit case for charging them under sedition and waging war against India," Kejriwal said.

Alleging that only about 125 of the 700 persons named in the list were raided, Kejriwal sought to question the rationale behind the pick and choose policy of the government in excluding the big fish from the raids.

News Source :

 Kejriwal said the then finance minister Pranab Mukherjee had even planned an amnesty for all the 700 Swiss account holders. He also demanded strict action against HSBC bank for encouraging kidnapping, corruption and terrorism in the country.

"Like America, we should enact a law that makes it mandatory for foreign banks operating in the country to furnish a list of all account holders to the income tax department," he said, asking the thousands of HSBC bank employees to quit their jobs.

HSBC fears US anti-money laundering penalty may top $1.5 billion

 HSBC fears US anti-money laundering penalty may top $1.5 billion :

 LONDON: HSBC Holdings said it's likely to face criminal charges from US anti-money laundering probes and the cost of a settlement may "significantly" exceed the $1.5 billion the bank has already set aside.

The bank made an additional $800 million provision in the third quarter to cover the costs of the investigation, adding to the $700 million it had already earmarked.

 HSBC also put aside more than $357 million in the period to compensate UK clients wrongly sold payment-protection insurance on loans as it posted an increase in pretax profit that missed analysts' estimates.

"The final amount of the financial penalties could be higher, possibly significantly higher," HSBC said in a statement today. "The resolution of at least some of these matters is likely to involve the filing of corporate criminal as well as civil charges."

Chief Executive Officer Stuart Gulliver's attempts to reduce costs at the bank are being hobbled by the US probes and compensation claims from UK clients. A Senate committee said in July that failures in HSBC money-laundering controls allowed terrorists and drug cartels access to the US financial system.

Standard Chartered Plc, which like HSBC makes most of its profit in Asia, paid $340 million in August to settle a regulator's claim it broke Iranian sanctions rules.

"The size of the provision is a shock," said Simon Maughan, a financial industry strategist at Olivetree Securities Ltd. in London. "There was a huge fuss made about Standard Chartered's fine, but this far exceeds that."

Underlying pretax profit, which excludes acquisitions and disposals as well as accounting losses on the fair value of the lender's own debt, rose to $5.04 billion in the third quarter from $2.24 billion in the year-earlier period, missing the $5.6 billion median estimate of eight analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

Underlying income, at $16.1 billion, missed the $16.5 billion estimate of Gary Greenwood, a banking analyst at Shore Capital Ltd. in Liverpool, England.

Gulliver, who became CEO in January 2011, is seeking to cut costs by $2.5 billion to $3.5 billion and revive profit by selling assets to focus on emerging economies in which the bank has a greater market share. The savings are likely to exceed that range and be met by the end of 2013, HSBC said.

Costs as a proportion of revenue increased to 71% from 50% in the year-earlier period, outside Gulliver's 48% to 52% target range, as the lender set aside more for the potential US fines and PPI claims.

"Today's cost performance is very disappointing," Maughan said. "It raises a question mark about how rapidly these efficiencies can be made by Gulliver and his team."

 HSBC has been in talks with US regulators over allegations it laundered funds of sanctioned nations including Iran and Sudan. The probes prompted Standard & Poor's to question whether the lender, Europe's largest by market value, is too big to be managed effectively.

A settlement of $1.5 billion would be the biggest reached in the US over such allegations, topping the $619 million in penalties paid in June by ING Groep NV, the biggest Dutch financial-services company.

The provision "is based on the discussions we've had with the various departments of the US government" since June, Gulliver told reporters on a conference call today. He said it was up to the US as to when the matter would be settled, and declined to comment further.
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UBS Suspected of Helping 52,000 Americans Evade U.S. Income Taxes

 UBS Suspected of Helping 52,000 Americans Evade U.S. Income Taxes

In February 2009, UBS (United Bank of Switzerland) agreed to pay $780,000,000 to settle charges that it helped 52,000 Americans evade U.S. income taxes through secret offshore "black accounts." Since the settlement, UBS has resisted efforts of the U.S. Justice Department to force it to divulge the names of its American secret account holders. UBS maintains that revealing the names of secret account holders would be a criminal violation of Swiss banking laws. UBS turned over the names of 250 suspected U.S. tax evaders to U.S. authorities in February, a move that was criticized by the Swiss Bankers' Accociation.

UBS has suffered massive losses in subprime mortgage investments and received a $59 billion bailout from the Swiss government last fall.

According to Arvind Kejriwal Indian Government Should start fresh investigations inspired from the Strict steps  taken by U.S  Government against Tax Evasion.

Farmers’ protest turns aggressive in Maharashtra

Farmers’ protest turns aggressive in Maharashtra:

Seeking better prices for sugarcane, agitating farmers in the state of Maharashtra went on a protest on Wednesday in which the farmers and police had a scuffle with each other that sent shock waves all through Kolhapur, Satara and Sangli districts.

The protesting farmers set a police jeep on fire and also damaged several state-run buses. Police had to lathi-charge to disperse the protesters and also opened fire to restrict the irate mobs in which a farmer was injured after he was hit on the leg in the clash.  Earlier on Monday, a farmer was reportedly dead after the police opened fire to contain the agitating protesters  said the police.

According to the farmers, they are making a demand of Rs 3,000 for one ton of sugarcane instead of Rs 2,300 which they claim to be too less. The owners of the factory who are said to be the most powerful politicians from the ruling Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), however are not accepting the demand of the farmers.

The protest turned aggressive following the arrest of the Independent MP Raju Shetty, under whom the agitation has been led. Mr Shetty was lodged in the Yerawad central jail in Pune after his refusal to apply for a bail.

In the meantime, activist-turned-politician Arvind Kejriwal, took a chance using the hot-tempered opportunity by pulling himself into the matter  accusing the government of Maharashtra by saying that the farmers’  interests have been ignored as most of the owners of the sugar factory are very close to the ruling party in the state.

Extending his support, social activist Anna Hazare also condemned the act of police firing on the agitating farmers and criticized the state government for being cruel to the farming community.

Meeting Chinese aspirations

 Meeting Chinese aspirations:

The Chinese Communist Party on Thursday selected China's new leadership headed by Mr. Xi Jinping. He will lead not only the party as general secretary of the party's Central Committee but also the military as chairman of the party's Central Military Commission. He is expected to be elected China's president, with Mr. Li Keqiang as premier, in March during a session of the National People's Congress.

Mr. Xi inherits the country from his predecessor, Mr. Hu Jintao, when it is at a crossroads. Although it is now the world's No. 2 economy, it is suffering from a great rich-poor gap, serious environmental disruption, widespread corruption and ethnic problems.

There were times that China's economy enjoyed two-digit growth. But this year it is expected to grow only 7.8 percent.

"The Scientific Outlook on Development," the party's new "theoretical guidance," which is the legacy of the outgoing Mr. Hu and is aimed at achieving sustainable and balanced growth, sums up what the new Chinese leadership must accomplish.

It is an enormous task for the leadership of a country with a population of 1.34 billion. To prove his quality as leader, Mr. Xi needs to develop a concrete mechanism to address and lessen people's grievances and complaints.

Kasab boost for UPA ahead of Parliament session

Kasab boost for UPA ahead of Parliament session :

The hanging of Ajmal Kasab, the lone surviving terrorist of the 26/11 Mumbai attack, has come at a good time for the UPA government struggling at the Centre with issues ranging from corruption allegations to a no-confidence motion threat.

The move comes a day before the start of the winter session of Parliament, where the government is expected to come under heavy attack from various quarters. And the fourth anniversary of the 26/11 attack of 2008 is less than a week away.

Though a lot of people had expressed their displeasure in the past over the delay in executing Kasab, positive reactions are flooding in from most quarters now that it has been done away with. Most reactions are appreciative of the way the government smoothly carried out the operation.

"Gotta hand it to the Govts at the Centre and in Mumbai for the mature way they handled this. Shows we can still keep a secret if we need to," tweeted Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah.

"Better late than never. This was in order. The enemy of the country has been punished," BJP spokesperson Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said.

"Congratulations govt of India - for doing it so effectively. For once, the govt broke the news n not the news channels," tweeted Riteish Deshmukh, actor and son of former Maharashtra chief minister Vilas Rao Deshmukh. Kasab was hanged at Pune's Yerawada Jail at 7.30 am on Wednesday morning.

Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan told a news channel that secrecy had been maintained over Kasab's execution because the government did not want to compromise the security situation in any way.

A total of 166 people including foreigners were killed in the attack on Mumbai in 2008.

Kejriwal announces name of his party, calls it Aam Admi Party

Kejriwal announces name of his party, calls it Aam Admi Party :

Arvind Kejriwal's party was on Saturday named Aam Admi Party at a meeting of its founder members here during which the Constitution for the organization was also adopted.

The meeting of around 300 founder members was held at Constitution Club during which Kejriwal proposed the name of the party which was accepted by other members, sources said.

The Constitution of the party was also adopted at the meeting. It was proposed by Mayank Gandhi and seconded by Chandramohan, they said.

The formation of the party came after a bitter split with Anna Hazare over the question of the anti-corruption movement taking a political plunge as Kejriwal desired.

During the August fast, Hazare and Kejriwal ended the agitation saying they will work for providing a political alternative for the country to fight both Congress and BJP.

Government wins FDI battle by 21 votes, says reforms on track

Government wins FDI battle by 21 votes, says reforms on track :

he UPA government Friday dealt a blow to the opposition by winning a Rajya Sabha vote on FDI in retail by 21 votes and declared that there was no stopping India's reforms process.

In contrast to speculation that the government may lose the vote in the upper house, the victory proved pretty easy as the Samajwadi Party (SP) trooped out - like in the Lok Sabha Wednesday - while the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) voted for foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail.

As a disappointed opposition claimed 'moral victory' on the strength of the speeches made in the house over two days, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath said after the vote: 'Our reforms are on track.'

Commerce Minister Anand Sharma, the main speaker for the government on the contentious issue, took on the opposition after it said the FDI did not have the support of most MPs even if the final vote went in favour of the treasury benches.

'We challenge them,' he said. 'If we are a minority government, let them bring a no-confidence motion (against us).'

Initially there some confusion on the final voting figures and a scrutinyof voting recordwas carried out. In a late evening statement issued by Rajya Sabbha secretariat, it became clear that the opposition-backed motion against FDI in retail got 102 votes while the government managed 123. Nineteen members did not vote. They included nine who staged a walkout.

The earlier figure announced in the house after vote said that 109 members had voted in favour of the motion and 123 against it.Minutes before the voting process began, all nine SP members walked out, bailing out the ruling United Progressive Alliance (UPA) - for the second time in three days.On Thursday, day one of the debate in the Rajya Sabha, Mayawati took on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and declared triumphantly that 15 MPs of her BSP would vote with the UPA government.

Both the BSP and SP provide legislative support to the Congress-led government.The government move to provide 51 percent foreign equity in multi-brand retail has long been a contentious issue, stalling almost the entire first two weeks of the winter session of parliament.

With Friday's vote, global names like Carrefour, Tesco and Wal-Mart can set up stores in India.Earlier, addressing the house during the debate, Anand Sharma denied accusations that the FDI decision was a unilateral one and said the government had talked 'to everyone, farmers, traders, consumers, states'.

Some sparks flew during the Rajya Sabha debate, with Sharma's reference to Rajya Sabha member N.K Singh kicking up a row and leading to an adjournment.Sharma spoke about Singh having chaired a panel on FDI during the NDA rule. Singh was then principal secretary to prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

After the parliament defeat, Communist leader D. Raja accused the UPA government of 'brazenly' identifying itself 'with multinationals and then claims it is with aam admi'. 'The sense of the house is against FDI.'

The AIADMK gave a 'solemn assurance' that the next central government would reverse the FDI decision.AIADMK leader V. Maitreyan, who moved the motion for the debate in the Rajya Sabha, said: 'FDI will only be on paper and will not be implemented in states.'

The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) announced a country-wide protest from Jan 1.CAIT general secretary Praveen Khandelwal told IANS that the voting by certain parties in both houses of parliament was a result of 'manipulative politics.

CBI Director exposes Congress abuse of agency

CBI Director exposes Congress abuse of agency:

Former CBI director US Mishra’s allegation that he faced political pressure during investigation of the disproportionate assets case against then Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and BSP chief Mayawati is, by itself, nothing startling. Everyone knows that the UPA Government is bartering with SP and BSP. Earlier, on the FDI retail logjam, BSP had bailed the Government out in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha. UPA is repaying the debt by ensuring that the Quota Bill gets passed in Parliament.

There is nothing unusual and unprecedented in Mishra’s statement. Similar views have been expressed by another former CBI director Joginder Singh, who was asked to go slow on the Fodder Scam against Lalu Prasad Yadav by then Prime Minister IK Gujral. Singh had declined to oblige saying that he needs that thing in writing. The written statement never came but the CBI chief was transferred soon after.

According to Sunday Guardian, former joint director of CBI NK Singh who arrested Indira Gandhi in 1977 also had to face similar incidents in the past.

Remembering one such incident, NK Singh had said that because of this CBI-Congress nexus, D Sen was given two extensions by Indira Gandhi and he stayed on as CBI director for six years between 1971 and 1976. Later on Shah Commission, which was formed to look into Emergency excesses, slammed D Sen for abusing his power and authority.There is no need to give more examples to prove that the current UPA Government is completely exposed. Congress has always used CBI for their own benefits and to settle scores.

Gang-rape victim fights on, rage spreads

Gang-rape victim fights on, rage spreads:

The rage spread, rapidly and steadily, through India's national capital Friday as students, activists and just concerned citizens gathered at various places in the city to protest the torture and gang-rape of a young woman, now battling to stay alive in a Delhi hospital.

As the protests literally reached President Pranab Mukherjee's doorstep, with angry demonstrators going right up till the gates of Rashtrapati Bhavan and one even managing to enter the complex, Delhi Police finally nabbed the two men who were at large.As the evening set in, hundreds reached 10 Janpath, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi's offficial residence, and held candle march and noisy protests. Police erected barricades and stopped anyone from entering her heavily fortified residence.The parliamentary standing committee on home affairs, on its part, summoned union Home Secretary R.K. Singh and Delhi Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar Dec 27 to discuss atrocities against women and the law and order situation in the national capital.R.K. Singh and Neeraj Kumar later held a press conference and said they will be seeking "maximum punishment" for the accused persons. They said they will seek fast-track and day-to-day trial in the case that has shocked the nation.

But the Delhi High Court said it is not "convinced" with the status report filed by the Delhi Police which did not mention the details of police officials patrolling the area where the woman was gang-raped and tortured in a moving bus.A division bench of Chief Justice D. Murugesan and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw said: "We have gone through the report and we are not convinced. None of the details of the police officials has been mentioned," said the court expressing its displeasure at the police for not filing the detailed report.Faced with the growing outrage, with protests not just in New Delhi but also elsewhere in the country, Delhi Police arrested two more accused, including one who has claimed that he is a juvenile. The sixth man identified as Akshay Thakur has been arrested from Aurangabad in Bihar.In scenes unprecedented in the city, multiple protests broke out - at India Gate, Rajpath, Rashtrapati Bhavan, Jantar Mantar and 10 Janpath in the heart of Lutyens Delhi as well as outside Safdarjung Hospital, where the 23-year-old victim of the savage gang-rape fought a valiant battle against her injuries but continued to stay critical.

Rarely, if ever, have so many people taken to the streets in so many different places for a single cause. It was an unstoppable momentum.Demanding justice and fast track courts, many people have rallied in protest in the capital in the five days since the incident Sunday night, when the physiotherapist intern was brutally assaulted and her male friend beaten in a moving bus. Both were stripped and dumped by the roadside near the domestic airport after the nearly 40-minute ordeal.

"Hang me!" So said an accused in the gang-rape of a young woman Wednesday in a Delhi court, which sent him and two others to police remand after all of them admitted their involvement in the crime.

Vinay Sharma, an assistant gym instructor, told the court that he had beaten up the gang-rape victim's male friend, but did nothing with the girl and told Metropolitan Magistrate Namrita Agarwal: "Hang me!"

The other accused Pawan Gupta and Mukesh, the brother of co-accused bus driver Ram Singh, in whose vehicle the crime took place, were also presented in the Saket court.

The magistrate sent Gupta and Sharma to four days' police custody. Mukesh was sent to Tihar jail on 14 days' custody.Mukesh, after confessing to the crime, agreed to undergo an identification parade. Gupta and Sharma refused to do so.Gupta told the court that he did not want to undergo the identification exercise as he had committed a 'horrible act'.The court said that Mukesh would undergo the identification drill - in which an alleged offender is brought before witnesses and victims - on December 20 in jail.

The bus driver, who was Tuesday sent to police remand till December 23, had refused to undergo the identification parade.The Delhi High Court took suo motu notice of the gang-rape incident and remarked: 'Nobody is safe here.' The high court told police to file a report by Friday.The rape and torture occurred Sunday night, when the woman and her male friend boarded a private bus in south Delhi after watching a movie.

Delhi Gang Rape Protest

Delhi gang-rape victim has brain injury:

 The 23-year-old Delhi gang-rape victim has significant brain injury, infection in lungs and abdomen and she is currently struggling against all odds at Mount Elizabeth Hospital, where her condition continues to be extremely critical, the hospital said on Friday.

Mount Elizabeth Hospital,

“Our medical team’s investigations upon her arrival at the hospital on Thursday showed that in addition to her prior cardiac arrest, she also had infection of her lungs and abdomen, as well as significant brain injury,” said Dr. Kelvin Loh, Chief Executive Officer, Mount Elizabeth Hospital.

In a statement, Dr. Loh said, “The patient is currently struggling against the odds, and fighting for her life.”

Briefing reporters on the girl’s condition, Loh said, “As at 28 December, 11 am (8:30 IST) the patient continues to remain in an extremely critical condition.”

She had undergone three surgeries at the Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi, where she remained on ventilator support during most part of the treatment. Doctors removed major part of her intestines, which had become gangrenous.

“A multi-disciplinary team of specialists has been working tirelessly to treat her since her arrival, and is doing everything possible to stabilise her condition over the next few days,” Dr. Loh said.

“The High Commission of India has been fully supportive in helping the hospital and her family, and ensuring that the best care is made available,” he added. 

Gang-rape victim dies; Section 144 imposed in New Delhi

 Gang-rape victim dies; Section 144 imposed in New Delhi

The 23-year-old girl, who put up a brave battle for life after she was gang-raped and brutally assaulted in a Delhi bus on December 16 that had created a nationwide outrage, died on Saturday morning in a hospital here.

The girl, who was admitted to the well-known multi-organ transplant facility Mount Elizabeth Hospital here on Thursday morning in an extremely critical condition, breathed her last at 4:45 am (2:15 am India time). She was earlier treated at the Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi.

The girl isn't dead. Instead she's moved to a better place where no rapes happen. Too bad that place doesn't exist in apna Bharat mahaan.

 It's Modi again in Gujarat

 It's Modi again in Gujarat, Congress bags Himachal :

The score was one all in the crucial battle for political stakes Thursday with a hat trick of wins in Gujarat for Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) Narendra Modi, who virtually equalled his 2007 tally, while the Congress wrested power in Himachal Pradesh.In Gujarat, the BJP was poised to bag 116 seats, one less than the 117 it won last time, missing a two-thirds majority in the 182-member house. The Congress was set to get 60 seats, one more than 2007's 59.Former BJP chief minister Keshubhai Patel's Gujarat Parivartan Party (GPP) was left with two seats, including his own.

In the hill state of Himachal Pradesh, the BJP's Prem Kumar Dhumal government conceded defeat to the Congress that won a comfortable victory of 36 seats in the 68-member assembly. The BJP, which had got 41 seats in 2007, was down to 26.One all perhaps, but not really even stevens. The win in Gujarat, which sends 26 MPs to the Lok Sabha against Himachal Pradesh's four, dominated the political space, with the BJP exulting and the Congress looking for ways to explain its loss.
The drums rolled outside the BJP office in Ahmedabad and sweets were distributed as Modi, whose persona has dominated the party's politics even at the national level, readied for a third straight term as chief minister, with speculation mounting over whether he would be the BJP's man for prime minister in 2014.

Modi, who has ruled Gujarat since 2001 and used innovations like 3-D technology to reach out, visited his mother to get her blessings and even his arch-rival Keshubhai Patel after the results were out."No need of looking behind, FORWARD! We want infinite energy, infinite courage, infinite patience..." he said on Twitter even before the results were clear."Aaj ka CM, 2014 ka PM!" shouted his supporters as if on cue.Triumphant at the important win, BJP leaders fought shy of responding to that most asked question.

"(The Gujarat election) is not about PM candidate but about who wins in Gujarat," BJP leader Balbir Punj said. "Let us savour this moment."Rajya Sabha MP Smriti Irani said frankly that Modi, 62, would be her candidate for the country's top post on the strength of his governance in Gujarat.Terming it a spectacular victory, Seshadri Chari of the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) echoed that view. "This election is not to elect a PM candidate. We had expected the number to cross 125 but still we are very happy."For Ahmedabad-based activist Shabnam Hashmi, the "victory was frankly very surprising"."Social activists who stand by principles of democracies, who believe that Modi has finished all democracies, will continue to fight," Hashmi said."You need a Congress to lose like this," she added, angrily pointing to the party's inability to garner votes.The Congress, which in complete contrast to the BJP had put forward no one leader as its chief ministerial candidate and had in fact consciously steered clear of bringing up the minority polarisation in the state, took solace in the fact that Modi had not won more seats.Even after it became clear that the BJP had won an easy victory, senior ministers looked for ways to describe the loss. P. Chidambaram termed the Congress a real winner, Kapil Sibal said it was a "2D win for a 3D campaign" and Salman Khurshid was of the view that the results should worry Modi.

The Congress welcomed the "thumping victory" in Himachal Pradesh, where its veteran leader Virbhadra Singh steered it to power."I have left it on Soniaji (Congress president) to decide that who will be the next chief minister," Virbhadra Singh, 78, told IANS in Shimla, adding that "he has full faith in the high command".

The party will decide on its leader when the Congress Legislative Party (CLP) meets in the next two to three days -- 28 of 36 elected legislators owe alliance to Virbhadra Singh.

Non-bailable arrest warrant issued against Vijay Mallya

Non-bailable arrest warrant issued against Vijay Mallya:

A special magistrate court here on Friday issued a non-bailable arrest warrant (NBW) against the Chairman of Kingfisher Airlines, Vijay Mallya, and four other directors for non-appearance in cases relating to bouncing of cheques issued in favour of GMR Hyderabad International Airport Limited (GHIAL) towards user charges.

Non-bailable arrest warrant issued against Vijay Mallya

Four cheques totalling Rs.10.5 crore were issued since January this year to GHIAL, which operates Rajiv Gandhi International Airport here. But, they were dishonoured when presented for clearance following which legal notices were served on Kingfisher.

As the airline did not make the payment, GHIAL filed a case in the special court under the Negotiable Instruments Act in August. The court issued summons to Kingfisher Airlines, Vijay Mallya, chief executive officer Sanjay Agarwal, chief financial officer H. G. Raghunath and two others asking them to appear in the court on Friday but they did not.

The lawyer for the airline and the directors filed a petition under provisions of criminal procedure code to dispense with their personal attendance. However, the judge, L. Kedarachari, dismissed the petition and issued the NBW against the airline representative and five directors led by Mr. Mallya.

Kingfisher and GHIAL had entered into an agreement under which the former was collecting user development charges from passengers for parking, landing and navigation with regard to Hyderabad airport. The airline was supposed to remit the money to GMR but it did not.

When GMR demanded the unpaid user charges, Kingfisher issued cheques over a period of time since January, and those were dishonoured. Similar cases were said to be pending in Mumbai and New Delhi after the airport operators moved the court.

Mr. Mallya did not immediately face the threat of arrest as he could get the NBW recalled by appearing in the court before November 5 when the case is posted for next hearing or move the High Court for a temporary stay, sources said. 

US politics and election: 2012 review

US election 2012: Obama wins second term – as it happened

US election 2012: Obama wins second term – as it happened

This was the year that Barack Obama secured a second term in office thanks to his own ultra-efficient election machine, a weak opponent in Mitt Romney and a Republican party that appeared unable to hold the middle ground of American politics.

President Obama overcame a bad economy, high unemployment and a fractured political landscape to win a second term in the White House Tuesday night, defeating challenger Mitt Romney by taking several key battleground states and denying him any inroads in traditional Democratic bastions.


This was the year that Barack Obama secured a second term in office thanks to his own ultra-efficient election machine

The Northeastern states all stayed in Obama’s column by huge margins, but he also took at least six of the nine swing states, including all-important Ohio, bringing the 51-year-old president over the 270 electoral votes he needed to win, according to unofficial returns.
New Jersey voters — faced with major challenges in getting to the polls in the wake of wide devastation left behind by Hurricane Sandy — went solidly for the president, giving him the state’s 14 electoral votes. They also re-elected U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), who easily defeated Republican Joe Kyrillos, as the Democrats increased their majority in the Senate.

In one of the most closely watched Senate races in the country, Elizabeth Warren defeated Republican Sen. Scott Brown in Massachusetts. Despite the loss at the top of the ticket, the GOP retained its control of the House.

Following projections by the Associated Press and all the major networks that he had won, Obama tweeted on his official Twitter account: "We're all in this together. That's how we campaigned, and that's who we are. Thank you

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