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Half of existing ATMs likely to shut by March 2019

Nearly half of country’s approx 2.38 lakh ATMs face closure this fiscal, after service providers find the running of these outlets nonviable.

Most of the ATMs considered for pull-back are non-urban.

If it happens financial inclusion programme of millions of beneficiaries under govt’s Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) will be affected. Also long ques at banks will once again return as norm.

Also thousands of job that ride on the facility will now be lost with the move.

The Confederation of ATM Industry (CATMI) said the decision for closure comes following recent regulatory guideline for ATMs hardware and software upgrades, recent mandates on cash management standards and the Cassette Swap method of loading cash.

The revenues from ATM services are not growing at all due to very low ATM interchange and ever-increasing costs, it said, adding that unless banks compensate ATM deployers, the scenario could get still worse.

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Governor dissolves Jammu Kashmir Assembly after rivals stake claim to form govt

Jammu and Kashmir is headed for president’s rule, after the governor dissolved its state legislative assembly late Wednesday. The move came after rival political combines said they would stake their claims to power.

The people’s Democratic Party(PDP) and former chief minister, Mehbooba Mufti, released  a letter on Twitter seeking to form govt with her traditional rivals, the National conference(NC) and Congress.

Minutes later the governor Satya Pal Malik, issued a communique of the dissolution.

In an isolated bid, People’s Conference chief Sajad Lone put forward his claim to form govt too.

Both Mufti and Lone said they used social media because fax machine at governor’s residence didn’t seem working and Malik was not available of phone either.

The governor’s office said the dissolution was invoked as no govt was likely to last long. “The coming together of such parties in a grouping is nothing but an attempt to gain power rather than to form a responsive govt,” it said in a release.

The state needs a stable govt, the release said.

 

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India Top Today Video

Unbelievable ! One-year-old escapes unhurt after train runs over

Mathura : A one-year-old girl had a miraculous escape after a train sped over her at Uttar Pradesh’s Mathura Railway Station.

A video footage shows the infant lying jammed  between the outer side of the track and the raised platform. The baby can be heard crying as the train passes over her.

Then, As soon as the train clears out, a onlooker gets down to the track,  lifts the baby and passes her over to the relatives.

People were heard chanting God’s name while the traumatised baby cried incessantly.

Watch the hair-raising video

 

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Justice after 34 years : Yashpal Singh awarded death penalty for murder

Naresh Sherawat
Naresh Sherawat

More than three decades after the anti-Sikh riots, a Delhi court today sentenced one of the two men, found guilty of killing two men, during the violence in Delhi.

The court had convicted Naresh Sherawat and Yashpal Singh last Wednesday, 14 Nov in the murder of Hardev Singh and Avtar Singh in Delhi’s Mahipalpur locality.

The quantum sentence after final arguments were pronounced in Tihar Jail today, due to security concerns and attack on the convicts on the premises of Delhi court earlier.

Naresh has been sentenced with life in prison while Yashpal was handed down capital punishment.

Both men were found guilty of criminal conspiracy, unlawful assembly, rioting, weapon possession, attempt to murder and murder.

The murder case was lodged based on complaint filed by Santokh Singh, brother of Hardev Singh. The Delhi Police had closed the case in 1994 citing lack of evidence but a Special Investigation Team(SIT) reopened the case under directions from the Supreme Court.

186 cases are now being probed by the SIT, and today’s convictions is first in the batch.

Yashpal Singh
Yashpal Singh

The Case
On Nov 1, 1984, a mob of 800-1000 armed men carrying lathis, iron rods, stones and kerosene attacked four Sikh shopkeepers in Mahipalpur.

The grocers shut their shops and rushed to their rented homes. The mob looted and set the shops on fire and as panicky Sikhs sought shelter in a small room, Avtar Singh reached there .

The mob entered the place and  assaulted the  people there. All five were then thrown from the first floor.

Police arrived at the scene and shifted the victims to Safdarjung hospital, where Hardev Singh and Avtar Singh were declared dead on arrival.

The 1984 Anti-Sikh Riots
The 1984 anti-Sikh riots were triggered  by assassination of then prime minister Indira Gandhi, by her Sikh bodyguards.

Approximately 2,800 people died across India with 2,100 victims reported from Delhi alone.

Indira’s assassination came after she ordered the Indian Army to raid the Golden Temple and eliminated Sikh pro-independence insurgents.

 

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Phase 2 voting underway in Chhattisgarh

Raipur : Voting is progressing in its second and final phase for Chhattisgarh Assembly amid heavy security arrangements comprising one lakh security personnel, helicopters and drones.

The Maoist infested state had witnessed a 76.28 percent turnout for 18 seats in the first phase earlier.

More than 1.5 crore people are eligible to vote in over 19,000 polling bhooths deciding between incumbent BJP or Congress led alliance or the third alternative AAP which too is fielding its candidates.

Chhattisgarh was carved out of tribal-dominated districts of Madhya Pradesh in 2000. Two people have served as chief minister since. The first was Congress leader Ajit Jogi from 2000 – 2003. After Jogi’s departure in 2003 Raman Singh of BJP has remained as CM there.

The votes will be counted on 11 Dec, when results of four other states – Mizoram, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana an Rajasthan – too will be declared.

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Transgender woman files nomination for Dec 7 polls

In a first, Telengana has a transgender candidate contesting for polls in the state, scheduled for 7 Dec.

32-year-old Chandra Mukhi is a transgender activist and will contest on CPM led-Bahujan Left Front(BLF) ticket from Gosha Mahal constituency.

She is pitted against senior Congress leader Mukhesh Goud and BJP leader T Raja Singh.

“Nowadays, power is enjoyed only by a few sections and I want to change that. So, if elected to power, I will address issues relating to transgenders and child labour, which is plaguing the constituency,” she said.

Born as Rajesh, Chandramukhi underwent sex-change procedure 15 years ago and has been living with transgender community since.

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Four die unable to get past exit in laundry fire : Delhi

Four employees, including two women, at a laundry unit were killed and one injured after getting stuck at exit door during a fire there.

The incident took place Friday around 12:20 in Beadonpura in Delhi’s Karil Bhag.

The deceased were identified as Bagan Prasahad (55), RM Naresh (40), Aarti (20), and Asha (40).

According to police the victims were transferring a chemical solvent into a container, when it spilled onto the floor and came in contact with a steam iron, triggering the fire.

A heavily built man seated next to the exit, tried to rush out but got stuck at the door, stranding the others behind who eventually fell victims to the fire.

Two fire tenders attended the scene and brought the fire under control in half-an-hour.

 AJeet (25), who survived the fire is being treated at a nearby hospital.

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Union minister was bribed with few crores : Transferred CBI officer claims in petition

A CBI officer who submitted petition about his abrupt transfer claimed that he had papers that could shock the court.

Manish Kumar Sinha
Manish Kumar Sinha

The CBI officer Manish Kumar Sinha, in his petition stated that a union minister accepted “a few crores” in bribe to intervene on behalf of a businessman whose irregularities were caught by the agency.

“Nothing shocks us” said Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, rejecting his request for an urgent hearing.

Sinha who was investigating CBI’s number two officer Rakesh Asthana was moved to Nagpur, as part of a massive, sudden shake-up last month.

Sinha alleged that his transfer was aimed at “changing the course of the investigation” and help Rakesh Asthana.

The Backdrop
Allegations surfaced that CBI Special Director had accepted a few crores to help a Hyderabad-based businessman, Satish Sana, evade summons in an investigation.

Sana is co-accused in multiple cases under investigation against meat exporter Moinn Qureshi, who is accused of money laundering.

Sinha was probing the case. Asthana allegedly received bribes through a middleman named Manoj Prasad, who was arrested by the CBI’s anti-corruption unit on 16 Oct. He has reportedly confessed his crime.

The officer is also in charge of several high-profile cases including bank scam investigations involving celebrity jeweler Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Chokshi.

 

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3 Dead, 20 Injured in Amritsar blast ; Terror angle suspected

Amritsar : At least three people were killed and 20 injured after two bike-born men hurled grenade into a packed prayer hall in Amritsar.

The incident took place in ‘s Rajasansi village about eight km from Amritsar airport on Sunday

Those injured have been taken to hospital while bodies of two victims have been sent for postmortem.

According to eyewitnesses, two men with faces covered threw the explosive at Nirankari where a religious ritual was underway.The pair fled on their bike after the attack.

Police suspect Kashmir terror hand though they are looking to see if state’s Khalistan outfit might have a bearing on the incident.

Army Chief Bipin Rawat had warned of insurgency in early Nov
Army Chief Bipin Rawat had warned of insurgency in early Nov

Intelligence had alerted police to spotting seven Jaish-e-Mohammed(JeM) terrorists in the state who were  “heading to Delhi”. However police can confirm their involvement only after confirming identities of the attackers, images of whom have been captured on CCTV, officials said.

Home Minister Rajnath Singh has promised sternest action for those responsible.

Chief Minister Amarinder Singh meanwhile hinted that ISI backed Khalistani/Kashmiri terror groups bent on “destroying hard earned peace” could be related to the violence.

Incidentally Army General Bipin Rawat had warned of insurgency in Punjab early this month.

 

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War Won : Marathas to get reservation in jobs, education

The Maharashtra govt has accepted the State Backward Class Commission’s report and agreed to grant reservation in jobs and educational institutions, to the Martha community.

The chief minister Devendra Fadnavis who made the announcement said, the Marathas will be called “Socially and Educationally Backward Class” (SEBC)  as per the Commission’s recommendation.

On question if the new reservation will cause crossing 50 percent ceiling set by Supreme Court, Fadnavis said the Commission has described the condition of Maratha community as “extraordinary and exceptional”.

“Even though the case of Tamil Nadu, where reservation has crossed 50 per cent mark, is pending in the apex court, it has not been struck down. We are confident of extending reservation to Marathas,” he said.

The community held demonstrations off and on, for its long-standing demand of quota in jobs and education.

The Commission in its findings cited that the Marathas that makes up 30 percent of the state’s population has only a minuscule representation in govt and semi-govt services.

Incidentally, the state does not need Centre’s nod for granting quota.