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Wednesday, 11 January 2012

EPFO may reduce interest on PF deposits India Inc welcomes 100% in single-brand retail!42% of Indian children underweight, Manmohan calls it a 'national shame'!The Myth of Inclusive Growth means Corporate Greed and Growth of One Percent Micro Minorit


India Inc welcomes 100% in single-brand retail!42% of Indian children underweight, Manmohan calls it a 'national shame'!The Myth of Inclusive Growth means Corporate Greed and Growth of One Percent Micro Minority Dominant Class Brahaman Bania and Death for the Ninety Nine percent Majority masses!

Describing the process of preparing all-purpose Aadhar identity cards as illegal, a PIL filed in the Madras High Court has sought to scrap the project, saying personal and biometric details of citizens are being collected without the permission of Parliament. When the petition filed by S Raju of Vriddhachalam in Cuddalore district came up for admission today, the first bench comprising Chief Justice M Y Eqbal and Justice K B K Vasuki declined to stay functioning of the Unique Identity Authority of India (UIDAI) but issued notice to the Centre, Tamil Nadu government and UIDAI. When the petition was taken up, Raju's counsel N G R Prasad submitted that the UIDAI, constituted through an executive order, had no powers to compile personal details of people for Aadhar cards. Headed by co-chairman of Infosys Nandan Nilekani, UIDAI has so far spent Rs 673 crore between January 2009 and Nov 2011, while estimated cost for 2011-2012 would be Rs 1,500 crore. The counsel pointed out that when an attempt was recently made to introduce a Bill in Parliament, the Standing Committee on Finance discussed and rejected it on various grounds. "One of the main grounds raised by the committee is that the Aadhar project is a threat to national security and misuse of data of residents," he claimed. Without any statutory source for its existence, UIDAI has been entering into MoUs state governments, central government organisations and private entities to execute the project, it said, adding people are being asked to provide details like name, age, address, apart from scanned images of fingerprints and iris. "It is significant to state that in the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules 2003, there is no mention of collecting biometric data from the residents." Prasad noted that collection of such details without any permission from any statutory authority or Parliament is unconstitutional and that it amounted to serious infringement of the constitutional rights of citizens.

On the other hand,India has called for scaling upcounter-terror and economic cooperation with Israel, which has emerged as its second largest supplier of sophisticated military weapons. NO ONE should doubt that President Barack Obama is prepared to use military force to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon if sanctions and diplomacy fail, according to the President's former special assistant on Iran.

Law Minister Salman Khurshid was today caught in a raging controversy over his promise for nine per cent sub-quota for backward Muslims.

Troubled Galaxy Destroyed Dreams ,Chapter 728

Palash Biswas

http://indianholocaustmyfatherslifeandtime.blogspot.com/





http://basantipurtimes.blogspot.com/

Indian Holocaust My Father`s Life and

Time - SEVEN HUNDRED SEVENTY Eighty

Palash Biswas

http://indianholocaustmyfatherslifeandtime.blogspot.com/

http://basantipurtimes.blogspot.com/


EPFO may reduce interest on PF deposits



India Inc welcomes 100% in single-brand retail!
India Inc today welcomed the government's decision of allowing 100% FDI in single-brand retail, saying the move would have a positive impact on the employment situation in the country.
"It is a good move. This will help the micro and small enterprises," Ficci President Harsh Mariwala said.
Rajan Bharti Mittal, Vice Chairman and MD, Bharti Enterprise said the increased investments by foreign single-brand retailers will not only help improve consumer choice but also enhance competitiveness of Indian enterprises through access to global designs, technologies and management practices.
"Mandatory sourcing of at least 30% of the value of products sold from small and cottage industry sector will have a positive impact on the employment situation in the country. We hope the initiative is a precursor to further liberalisation in the sector in the days to come," Mittal said.
Sharing similar sentiments, Assocham said: "We hope political consensus will soon be evolved to allow 100% FDI in multi-brand retailing as well."
The government was forced to put on hold the Cabinet decision on allowing FDI in multi-brand retail by several political parties, including UPA ally Trinamool Congress.

Govt notifies 100% FDI in single brand retail

ARUN S
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Business LineA file photo of Louis Vuitton store in Mumbai.
Retains rider of 30% sourcing from Indian small industries
NEW DELHI, JAN 10:
The Government, which has been facing flak for 'policy paralysis', on Tuesday notified 100 per cent Foreign Direct Investment in single-brand retail trading – moving a step forward in opening up of the retail sector.
This FDI limit is up from the extant ceiling of 51 per cent. Investments will be through the Government approval route.
The move will enable multinational majors such as Louis Vuitton, LLadro, Nike, Adidas, Fendi, Gucci and Toyota to fully own and control their operations in India.
However, the notified Press Note has an important rider. It says, "In respect of proposals involving FDI beyond 51 per cent, mandatory sourcing of at least 30 per cent of the value of products sold would have to be done from Indian 'small industries / village and cottage industries, artisans and craftsmen'."
"'Small industries' would be defined as industries which have a total investment in plant and machinery not exceeding $1 million," it adds.
The Commerce, Industry and Textiles Minister, Mr Anand Sharma said that the 30 per cent mandatory sourcing clause "will provide stimulus to domestic manufacturing value addition and help in technical upgradation of our local small industry".
On the rationale for enhancing FDI ceiling to 100 per cent in single brand retail, the Government had said that in the last five years, under the 51 per cent FDI regime, only $44.45 million of foreign investments were received by the sector, constituting barely 0.03 per cent of the total FDI inflows.
"Globally, single brand retail follow a business model of 100 per cent ownership and global majors have been reluctant to establish their presence in a restrictive policy environment," the Government had said, adding that "The 51 per cent cap confers a right to pass all ordinary resolutions, while enhancing cap to 100 per cent will confer full ownership and control."
In November last year, the Cabinet had approved the move to allow 100 per cent FDI in single brand and 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail. However, a wave of protests and an eye on the forthcoming Uttar Pradesh assembly polls initially forced the Government to suspend its decision. Sensing that the protests were not directed at hiking the FDI limit in single-brand retail, it then decided to de-link that segment from multi-brand. A decision on opening up of multi-brand retail is expected after the UP assembly elections.
Keywords: FDI, single brand retail
http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/industry-and-economy/marketing/article2790270.ece?homepage=true

Traders oppose delinking of single brand from multi-brand retail

ARUN S.
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NEW DELHI, DEC. 11:
Ahead of their national governing council meeting on December 12-13 in Nagpur, leaders of domestic traders associations have opposed the Government's proposed move to delink Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in single brand retail from the controversial multi-brand sector.
Declining to be a part of the six-member joint committee proposed by the Government on retail, the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) also said its research arm will bring out a white paper early next month on the impact of FDI in retail.
The white paper will also have details on how some wholesale cash and carry players with FDI are flouting licence norms under the garb of wholesale by selling goods directly to people who are ineligible to make such purchases as per the terms of their licences, CAIT Secretary General, Mr Praveen Khandelwal, told Business Line. He added that in some cases the wholesale players with FDI are even selling directly to consumers for personal consumption.
Claiming that the Finance Minister, Mr Pranab Mukherjee, had not made any distinction between FDI in single brand retail while making his statement on the suspension of the Government's decision to permit 51 per cent FDI in retail trade, Mr Khandelwal said the traders expect the Government to protect the sanctity of the Finance Minister's statement. "We maintain our opposition to FDI in single brand and multi-brand retail," Mr Khandelwal said.
Though the traders will not form part of the Government's proposed joint committee, if the Government takes any fresh initiative to hold talks with all the stakeholders in the retail trade, they will consider joining the discussions, he said. The Nagpur meeting will also take stock of the situation so far and discuss the future course of action on retail trade.
The CAIT Research and Trade Development Society (CAIT's research wing) is also undertaking a study on how FDI in retail has not generated employment as expected and how they are flouting labour laws including by making their workers overtime without any additional benefits.
CAIT's white paper will also have letters sent by traders to the Prime Minister and the Foreign Investment Promotion Board on how wholesale cash and carry players are violating norms. Mr Khandelwal added that, "We will back our arguments with our research on FDI in retail in other countries as well and show why it is not good for India."
On December 2, the talks between the domestic traders and the Centre on allowing FDI in retail had ended in a deadlock. The Centre had then proposed the formation of a six-member Joint Group with equal representation from the Government and the traders associations to hold further parleys on the issue.
This week, top Government sources had said that the Centre may formally notify the Cabinet decision on permitting 100 per cent FDI in single-brand retail as there is no significant opposition targeting FDI in single-brand. The existing FDI cap on FDI in single-brand retail is 51 per cent.
arun.s@thehindu.co.in
Keywords: Governing council, traders associations, delink, FDI, single brand retail, controversial, multi-brand sector
http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/industry-and-economy/article2706981.ece

Law Minister Salman Khurshid was today caught in a raging controversy over his promise for nine per cent sub-quota for backward Muslims.

NO ONE should doubt that President Barack Obama is prepared to use military force to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon if sanctions and diplomacy fail, according to the President's former special assistant on Iran.

Mr Obama has ''made it very clear'' that he regards a nuclear- armed Iran as so great a threat to international security that ''the Iranians should never think that there's a reluctance to use the force'' to stop them, said Dennis Ross, who served two years on Mr Obama's National Security Council and a year as Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's special adviser on Iran. ''There are consequences if you act militarily, and there's big consequences if you don't act,'' Mr Ross said.

The administration considers the risks of permitting a nuclear-armed Iran to be greater than the risks of military action, said Mr Ross, who last month rejoined the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a research group.
The administration considers the risks of permitting a nuclear-armed Iran to be greater than the risks of military action. Photo: AFP


Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/world/obama-would-act-on-nuclear-iran-20120110-1ptjf.html#ixzz1j4bm6svU

UN nuclear inspectors to visit Iran 'soon,' IAEA official says

Western diplomats see Iran initiatives for dialogue with UN as a means to buy time for its nuclear program, without heeding demands to curb activity that could be put to making atomic bombs.


Senior UN nuclear inspectors are expected to visit Iran "quite soon" to discuss their growing concerns about possible military aspects to its nuclear program, an International Atomic Energy Agency official said on Tuesday.
Such a trip would come at a time of escalatingtension over Iran's nuclear ambitions with European nations preparing for a embargo on Iranian oil and Tehran threatening to retaliate by blocking Gulf oil shipping lanes vital to the global economy.

Iran, which has stoked Western suspicions by starting to enrich uranium inside a mountain bunker, last month said it had renewed an invitation for a special IAEA team to travel to the country.

The Vienna-based UN nuclear watchdog and Iran "are working on the timing of a possible visit," the agency official, who declined to be named, told Reuters.
The delegation would probably be headed by Herman Nackaerts, director of IAEA safeguards inspections worldwide. Lower-level inspectors regularly monitor Iran's declared nuclear sites but their movements are otherwise restricted.
Iran's latest overture to the UN agency, which has long urged Tehran to address disputes about its nuclear agenda, coincides with a toughening of Western sanctions imposed on Iran over its atomic activities.
The Islamic Republic has also signaled readiness to resume talks with major powers that have been frozen for a year.
Western diplomats tend to see such initiatives as attempts by Iran, a major oil producer, to buy time for its nuclear program, without heeding UN demands to curb activity that could be put to making atomic bombs.
"They talk about a dialogue but once a dialogue starts they are going to say no. So it won't get very far," one Western envoy in the Austrian capital said.

Iran has come under increased pressure since the IAEA reported in November that Tehran appeared to have worked on designing a nuclear weapon and that secret research to that end may be continuing, charges the country denies.

The Islamic state's decision to begin enriching uranium to a higher fissile purity of 20 percent at the Fordow underground site, confirmed by the IAEA on Monday, further fuelled Western alarm about its intentions and underlined Tehran's defiance.

Iran to remove 'ambIguities'

Uranium normally enriched to 3.5 percent can be used to fuel nuclear reactors, Iran's stated aim. It provides the fissile core of atomic bombs if refined to 90 percent, which the West suspects is Iran's ultimate intention.

"It's part of the slow drip, drip, drip of them putting together a nuclear weapon's capability that could withstand military strikes," David Albright, of the Institute for Science and International Security think tank, said of the Fordo move.
Iran says its nuclear program is entirely peaceful, aimed at generating electricity and producing medical isotopes to treat cancer patients.
Previous visits to Iran by senior IAEA officials have failed to make significant progress towards resolving questions about the nature of Iran's nuclear program, a dispute which has the potential to ignite a wider conflict in the Middle East.
IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano has made clear that any new visit by his senior officials to Tehran must address the agency's increased concerns about potential military dimensions to the nuclear program.
Suspicions have been stoked by Iranian secrecy and lack of full cooperation with inspectors from the IAEA, whose job is to verify that countries' nuclear activities are peaceful.
Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran's envoy to the IAEA, last month told Reuters the visit would aim to "work towards removing the ambiguities and resolving the issue," referring to the nuclear dispute.

It was language Soltanieh has used before with respect to high-level IAEA-Iran talks, and a Western diplomat voiced skepticism: "We haven't seen any indications that Iran is really serious."
ge
* In a photo from 2009, Iranian technicians work at a facility producing uranium fuel for a planned heavy-water nuclear reactor, just outside the city of Isfaha


Politics News | Updated Jan 10, 2012 at 07:03pm IST

UP polls: Muslim quota pits Cong against EC, Oppn

New Delhi: The issue of Muslim quota has put the Congress in trouble ahead of the assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh with the opposition calling the poll promise as unconstitutional and lodging a formal complaint with the Election Commission.
The Election Commission on Tuesday issued a notice to Congress candidate Louise Khurshid, the wife of Union Law Minister Salman Khurshid. She was served the notice by the Election Commission as the law minister was campaigning for her when he promised a 9 per cent sub-quota for backward Muslims in Uttar Pradesh.
Louise Khurshid has been asked by the Election Commission to explain within three days the statements made by her husband.
The notice was served after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) complained about the promise of Muslim quota being made by the Congress.
Khurshid had promised 9 per cent sub-quota for backward Muslims within 27 per cent OBC quota in Uttar Pradesh if the Congress wins the assembly elections and forms government in the state.
The law minister had, however, dismissed the complaint by the BJP, saying there was no law against promising more quotas.
But, the EC took cognizance of the BJP's complaint against Khurshid's statement which the BJP had termed as unconstitutional.
Talking about the issue, BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi had said, "BJP leaders met EC today. We have raised the issue about the way the Congress is trying to divide UP on the base of religion and caste to hide corruption. Whatever Salman Khurshid has said on 9 per cent Muslim sub quota is unconstitutional. This is a violation of moral code of conduct."
Reacting to the promise made by Khurshid, Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan termed the Congress as fraud, accusing it of deceiving common people.
"They are again fooling Muslims by offering 9 per cent reservation. They don't want SP government in state. Why did they not bring this 9 per cent before, they did not bring because of RSS," said Azam.
"Congress is deceiving Muslims. They are fooling for last 60 years. We created law for Urdu teachers and we will make law for uplifting the Muslims in the state."
(For updates you can share with your friends, follow IBNLive on Facebook, Twitter andGoogle+)
#UP polls #Muslim quota #Louise Khurshid #Salman Khurshid #Congress #BJP
http://ibnlive.in.com/news/up-polls-muslim-quota-pits-cong-against-ec-oppn/219617-37-64.html


42% of Indian children underweight, Manmohan calls it a 'national shame'!On the other hand,India has called for scaling upcounter-terror and economic cooperation with Israel, which has emerged as its second largest supplier of sophisticated military weapons.

Meanwhile,Describing the process of preparing all-purpose Aadhar identity cards as illegal, a PIL filed in the Madras High Court has sought to scrap the project, saying personal and biometric details of citizens are being collected without the permission of Parliament. When the petition filed by S Raju of Vriddhachalam in Cuddalore district came up for admission today, the first bench comprising Chief Justice M Y Eqbal and Justice K B K Vasuki declined to stay functioning of the Unique Identity Authority of India (UIDAI) but issued notice to the Centre, Tamil Nadu government and UIDAI. When the petition was taken up, Raju's counsel N G R Prasad submitted that the UIDAI, constituted through an executive order, had no powers to compile personal details of people for Aadhar cards. Headed by co-chairman of Infosys Nandan Nilekani, UIDAI has so far spent Rs 673 crore between January 2009 and Nov 2011, while estimated cost for 2011-2012 would be Rs 1,500 crore. The counsel pointed out that when an attempt was recently made to introduce a Bill in Parliament, the Standing Committee on Finance discussed and rejected it on various grounds. "One of the main grounds raised by the committee is that the Aadhar project is a threat to national security and misuse of data of residents," he claimed. Without any statutory source for its existence, UIDAI has been entering into MoUs state governments, central government organisations and private entities to execute the project, it said, adding people are being asked to provide details like name, age, address, apart from scanned images of fingerprints and iris. "It is significant to state that in the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules 2003, there is no mention of collecting biometric data from the residents." Prasad noted that collection of such details without any permission from any statutory authority or Parliament is unconstitutional and that it amounted to serious infringement of the constitutional rights of citizens.

The Myth of Inclusive Growth means Corporate Greed and Growth of One Percent Micro Minority Dominant Class Brahaman Bania and Death for the Ninety Nine percent Majority masses!

Plea to restore exemption from MAT, dividend distribution tax for SEZs

ARUN S.
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Export promotion council to put forward proposals at pre-Budget meet with Pranab
NEW DELHI, JAN. 10:
The Export Promotion Council for Export Oriented Units and SEZs (EPCES) has demanded that the Government restore exemption from Minimum Alternate Tax (MAT) and Dividend Distribution Tax (DDT) for Special Economic Zones (SEZs).
The council claimed that the imposition of both the taxes has led to a fall in investments in SEZ projects.
This, along with many other proposals, will be put forward by the council before the Finance Minister, Mr Pranab Mukherjee, during a pre-Budget stakeholder meeting slated for January 31, official sources told Business Line.
What has also affected investments in SEZs is the Direct Taxes Code (DTC) proposal to withdraw profit-linked deductions for SEZs, the council said in its pre-Budget proposal document.
"After the SEZ Act, 2005 came into force from February 2006, the average annual investment was Rs 40,000 crore (till 2010-end) and it grew at 136 per cent compound annual growth rate. But investments have declined due to the uncertainty caused by the DTC proposal and the MAT and DDT. (MAT and DDT is imposed on SEZ developers and only MAT on SEZ units). The first six months of 2011 saw investments of only Rs 17,566 crore in SEZs," it added.
The EPCES said imposition of MAT on SEZ developers and units are contrary to SEZ Act provisions and it would "virtually kill the SEZ Scheme."
"Imposition of MAT would practically mean that SEZ developers and units would be subjected to income tax at 20 per cent. With this provision, we have been informed, no investor would like to set up a unit in the SEZ," it said.
SEZ developers and units have filed petitions against the imposition of both the taxes in courts in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat, it said, adding that they are seeking legal opinion on the DTC Bill 2011 provisions.
Pointing out that the cut-off date mentioned in the DTC Bill for withdrawal of profit-linked incentives was insufficient (no profit-linked incentives for developers for SEZs notified after March 31, 2012, and for units becoming operational after March 31, 2014), the EPCES said this time period should be extended to March 31, 2015.
Incidentally, many SEZ developers had sought extra time from the Government to implement their existing projects citing the lack of investor interest due to the imposition of new taxes, the DTC proposals and the general economic slowdown. The Commerce Ministry, the nodal department concerning SEZs, has already sought suggestions from stakeholders to revamp the SEZ scheme.
The other main EPCES proposals include exemption from Central Sales Tax for goods supplied from the tax-free SEZs to the Domestic Tariff Area (where normal taxes and duties apply). "Supply of goods from DTA to SEZ is exempted from CST as they are treated as exports.
Similarly supply of goods from SEZ to DTA should be exempted from CST, being import of goods," EPCES said. It has also sought the revamping of the EOU scheme to attract more investment as well as increase exports and employment.
arun.s@thehindu.co.in
Keywords: Export Promotion Council for Export Oriented Units, SEZs, DTC Bill, DTC Bill 2011, MAT
http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/industry-and-economy/article2790757.ece


India's Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) needs to undergo significant changes to address the current malnutrition crisis in India, according to a World Bank report. The prevalence of underweight children in India is among the highest in the world, and is nearly double that of Sub-Saharan Africa, the report says. It also observes that malnutrition in India is a concentrated phenomenon. A relatively small number of states, districts, and villages account for a large share of the burden – 5 states and 50 percent of villages account for about 80 percent of the malnutrition cases. The consequences of child undernutrition for morbidity and mortality are enormous – and there is, in addition, an appreciable impact of undernutrition on productivity so that a failure to invest in combating nutrition reduces potential economic growth. In India, with one of the highest percentages of undernourished children in the world, the situation is dire. Moreover, inequalities in undernutrition between demographic, socioeconomic and geographic groups increased during the 1990s. More, and better, investments are needed if India is to reach the nutrition MDGs. Economic growth will not be enough.

Malnutrition is the condition that occurs when your body does not get enough nutrients.

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

There are a number of causes of malnutrition. It may result from:
  • Inadequate or unbalanced diet
  • Problems with digestion or absorption
  • Certain medical conditions
Malnutrition can occur if you do not eat enough food. Starvation is a form of malnutrition.
You may develop malnutrition if you lack of a single vitamin in the diet.
In some cases, malnutrition is very mild and causes no symptoms. However, sometimes it can be so severe that the damage done to the body is permanent, even though you survive.
Malnutrition continues to be a significant problem all over the world, especially among children. Poverty, natural disasters, political problems, and war all contribute to conditions -- even epidemics -- of malnutrition and starvation, and not just in developing countries.
Related topics:

Symptoms

Symptoms vary and depend on what is causing the malnutrition. However, some general symptoms include fatigue, dizziness, and weight loss.

Signs and tests

Testing depends on the specific disorder. Most work-ups include nutritional assessments and blood work.

Treatment

Treatment usually consists of replacing missing nutrients, treating symptoms as needed, and treating any underlying medical condition.

Expectations (prognosis)

The outlook depends on the cause of the malnutrition. Most nutritional deficiencies can be corrected. However, if malnutrition is caused by a medical condition, that illness has to be treated in order to reverse the nutritional deficiency.

Complications

If untreated, malnutrition can lead to mental or physical disability, illness, and possibly death.

Calling your health care provider

Discuss the risk of malnutrition with your health care provider. Treatment is necessary if you or your child have any changes in the body's ability to function. Contact your health care provider if the following symptoms develop:
  • Fainting
  • Lack of menstruation
  • Lack of growth in children
  • Rapid hair loss

Prevention

Eating a good, well-balanced diet helps to prevent most forms of malnutrition.

References

  1. Grover Z, Ee LC. Protein energy malnutrition. Pediatr Clin North Am. 2009 Oct;56(5):1055-68. [PubMed]
  2. Visvanathan R, Chapman IM. Undernutrition and anorexia in the older person. Gastroenterol Clin North Am. 2009 Sep;38(3):393-409. [PubMed]
  3. Suskind DL. Nutritional deficiencies during normal growth. Pediatr Clin North Am. 2009 Oct;56(5):1035-53. [PubMed]
  4. Kirby M, Danner E. Nutritional deficiencies in children on restricted diets. Pediatr Clin North Am. 2009 Oct;56(5):1085-103. [PubMed]

Full coverage

Indian PM: Malnutrition a Matter of 'National Shame'

Voice of America - ‎2 hours ago‎
January 10, 2012 Indian PM: Malnutrition a Matter of 'National Shame' Anjana Pasricha | New Delhi India's prime minister says malnutrition is a national shame, as a new survey finds that 42 percent of India's children are underweight. ...

Rate of under-nutrition "unacceptably high": PM

The Hindu - ‎8 hours ago‎
Terming the problem of malnutrition in the country as national shame, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday said the government cannot rely solely on the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) to tackle it. "...the problem ofmalnutrition is a ...

India 'shamed' by child malnutrition, says PM Singh

BBC News - ‎3 hours ago‎
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has branded malnutrition among children a "national shame", after a report said nearly half of children under five in the country were underweight. According to the report, 42% of children in that age bracket are ...

Problem of malnutrition a matter of national shame: Prime Minister

Indian Express - ‎3 hours ago‎
"...the problem of malnutrition is a matter of national s ....Read more Cooker / Polished riceBy: anand | Tuesday , 10 Jan '12 15:21:34 PM Reply | Forward Cooker kills 93 % of nutrition due to 400 deg C. And in polished rice we loose almost 90%. ...

India has twice the number of underweight children than sub-Saharan Africa

Daily News & Analysis - ‎3 hours ago‎
Over 40% of children under five in 100 focus districts in India are underweight -- double the average for sub-Saharan Africa -- and 59% stunted, reveals a survey report on hunger andmalnutrition released by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Tuesday. ...

Malnutrition a matter of national shame: PM

NDTV - ‎2 hours ago‎
"...the problem of malnutrition is a matter of national shame. Despite impressive growth in our GDP, the level of under-nutrition in the country is unacceptably high," he said releasing a report on Hunger and Malnutrition (HUNGaMA) here. ...

'Child malnutrition on decline, but levels still unacceptable'

IBNLive.com - ‎6 hours ago‎
PTI | 03:01 PM,Jan 10,2012 New Delhi, Jan 10 (PTI) India has seen a decrease in the prevalence of child malnutrition in the last seven years but the levels are still "unacceptably high", a new survey has found. The prevalence of child underweight has ...

'Child Malnutrition on Decline, But Levels Still Unacceptable'

Outlook - ‎6 hours ago‎
PTI | New Delhi | Jan 10, 2012 India has seen a decrease in the prevalence of child malnutritionin the last seven years but the levels are still "unacceptably high", a new survey has found. The prevalence of child underweight has decreased from 53 per ...

Over 40% of Indian children are malnourished, report finds

The Guardian - ‎38 minutes ago‎
The Indian prime minister has called local levels of child malnutrition in the country a "national shame" and pledged stronger action to bring hundreds of millions of his people out of poverty. Manmohan Singh was speaking on Tuesday at the release of a ...

Malnutrition a national shame,says PM

All India Radio - ‎2 hours ago‎
The Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh on Tuesday asserted that action is being taken by the concerned Ministries to address the problem of malnutrition in the country. Expressing serious concern over the high rate of malnutrition, he added that 200 ...

42% of Indian young childen underweight: survey

AFP - ‎6 hours ago‎
NEW DELHI — India's Premier Manmohan Singh called malnutrition in the country "a national shame" on Tuesday as he released a major survey that found 42 percent of children under five were underweight. "The problem of malnutritionis a matter of ...

Malnutrition data today, first in 5 years

Indian Express - ‎14 hours ago‎
For the first time in about five years, India will have data on district-level malnutrition. The data has been collated by Hyderabad-based Naandi Foundation in a report titled HUNGaMA (hunger and malnutrition) which will be released by Prime Minister ...

PM Calls India's Malnutrition "National Shame"

Voice of America (blog) - ‎3 hours ago‎
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh says the country's malnutrition rate is a matter of "national shame," with 42 percent of children under the age of five underweight. Mr. Singh Tuesday released results of the Hunger and Malnutrition Survey, ...

What PM said on hunger and malnutrition?

Microfinance Monitor - ‎2 hours ago‎
The following is the text of the Prime Minister's address while releasing HUNGaMA (Hunger andMalnutrition) Report-2011 in New Delhi on Tuesday. "There are nearly 16 crore children in the country below the age of 6 years. In the years to come, ...

Views | India's malnourishment crisis

Livemint - ‎7 hours ago‎
A new survey conducted by civil society groups such as the Citizen's Alliance againstMalnutrition and the Nandi Foundation once again drives home the stark truth: Far too many Indian children suffer from the scourge of malnutrition. ...

Sure, Mr PM, we're shamed by malnutrition. But are you?

Firstpost - ‎3 hours ago‎
It's a fair bet that many of us don't get to see and experience abject poverty andmalnutrition up-close beyond the beggar girl at the traffic light with her kwashiorkor-distended belly who taps on the taxi windscreen before she is shooed away by the ...

Child malnutrition in India a "national shame" –PM

Reuters AlertNet - ‎1 hour ago‎
By Nita Bhalla NEW DELHI, Jan 10 (AlertNet) - India's "unacceptably high" levels of childmalnutrition are a "national shame", Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said on Tuesday, adding that almost half the children in the country were still under-weight ...

42 percent of Indian children under 5 malnourished

The Associated Press - ‎2 hours ago‎
The Hunger and Malnutrition Survey monitored over 100000 children in 112 districts across nine states in the country from October 2010 to February of last year. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh released the report Tuesday and called child malnutrition the ...

Salient features of report on malnutrition and hunger

The Asian Age - ‎2 hours ago‎
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday released the HUNGaMA (Hunger and Malnutrition) survey report 2011. The report covered more than 73000 households in 112 districts across nine states and more than one lakh children and 74000 mothers. ...

Full text of PM's speech at the release of the HUNGaMA Report

NDTV - ‎8 hours ago‎
As I have said earlier and I repeat that the problem of malnutrition is a matter of national shame. Despite impressive growth in our GDP, the level of under-nutrition in the country is unacceptably high. We have also not succeeded in reducing this rate ...

42 percent children under five underweight: Report

TwoCircles.net - ‎3 hours ago‎
By IANS, New Delhi: Over 40 percent of children under five in 100 focus districts in India are underweight -- double the average for sub-Saharan Africa -- and 59 percent stunted, reveals a survey report on hunger and malnutrition released by Prime ...

Malnutrition a matter of national concern: PM

The Asian Age - ‎9 hours ago‎
Levels of under-nutrition in the country were 'unacceptably high' despite impressive GDP growth, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said on Tuesday and added that the problem of malnutritionwas a 'national shame'. Addressing a gathering here at the release ...

Malnutrition 'a national shame', says Indian PM

Australia Network News - ‎7 hours ago‎
India's Prime Minister has described his country's malnutrition a national shame after releasing a survey showing 42 per cent of its children under five are underweight. The Hunger andMalnutrition Report surveyed 73000 households across nine states. ...

Indian premier calls malnutrition a national shame

Monsters and Critics.com - ‎6 hours ago‎
New Delhi - Indian Premier Manmohan Singh Tuesday called malnutrition a 'national shame' as he released a survey that found 42 per cent of children under the age of five were underweight. The hunger and malnutrition survey of 73000 households across ...

Forty-two pct of Indian kids malnourished, says PM

Kuwait News Agency - ‎2 hours ago‎
NEW DELHI, Jan 10 (KUNA) -- Nearly 42 per cent of the children in India aged below six years are malnourished and underweight, said the country's Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh while citing the findings of the 'Hunger and Malnutrition Report'. ...

Every third malnourished child is an Indian: report

Moneycontrol.com - ‎8 hours ago‎
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh released the first-ever citizens' report on childmalnutrition in the national capital on Tuesday. "The problem of malnutrition is a national shame," the Prime Minister said. The statistics in the HUNGaMA (Hunger and ...

The real India story: PM calls malnutrition a shame

Hindustan Times - ‎3 hours ago‎
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh called malnutrition in the country "a national shame" on Tuesday as he released a major survey that found 42% of children under five were underweight. of the HUNGaMA (Hunger and Malnutrition) Report, which surveyed 73000 ...

Every 3rd malnourished child is an Indian: report

IBNLive.com - ‎8 hours ago‎
Almost 42 per cent of the children in the country numbering over 61 million are malnourished and stunted according to the Hunger and Malnutrition Report released by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi on Tuesday. The report says that one in ...

Malnutrition, a national shame: PM

News Today - ‎9 hours ago‎
The PM made the remarks while releasing a report on district-level malnutrition, titled HUNGaMA (hunger and malnutrition). The data has been collated by Hyderabad-based Naandi Foundation. While releasing the report here, Singh said that one out of ...

Under-nutrition unacceptably high despite GDP growth: PM

Northern Voices Online - ‎4 hours ago‎
New Delhi, (IANS) Expressing concern that 42 percent of India's children were underweight, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said Tuesday that levels of under-nutrition were "unacceptably high" despite GDP growth and labelled malnutrition a "national ...


According Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia,  the World Bank estimates that India is ranked 2nd in the world of the number of children suffering from malnutrition, after Bangladesh (in 1998), where 47% of the children exhibit a degree of malnutrition. The prevalence of underweight children in India is among the highest in the world, and is nearly double that of Sub-Saharan Africa with dire consequences for mobility, mortality, productivity and economic growth.[1]The UN estimates that 2.1 million Indian children die before reaching the age of 5 every year – four every minute – mostly from preventable illnesses such as diarrhoea, typhoid, malaria, measles and pneumonia. Every day, 1,000 Indian children die because of diarrhoea alone. According to the 1991 census of India, it has around 150 million children, constituting 17.5% of India's population, who are below the age of 6 years.The 2011 Global Hunger Index (GHI) Report ranked India 15th, amongst leading countries with hunger situation. It also places India amongst the three countries where the GHI between 1996 and 2011 went up from 22.9 to 23.7, while 78 out of the 81 developing countries studied, including Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Kenya, Nigeria, Myanmar, Uganda, Zimbabwe and Malawi, succeeded in improving hunger condition.[2]India is one of the fastest growing countries in terms of population and economics, sitting at a population of 1,139.96 million (2009) and growing at 10–14% annually (from 2001–2007).[3] India's Gross Domestic Product growth was 9.0% from 2007 to 2008; since Independence in 1947, its economic status has been classified as a low-income country with majority of the population at or below the poverty line.[4]Though most of the population is still living below the National Poverty Line, its economic growth indicates new opportunities and a movement towards increase in the prevalence of chronic diseases which is observed in at high rates in developed countries such as United States, Canada and Australia. The combination of people living in poverty and the recent economic growth of India has led to the co-emergence of two types of malnutrition: undernutrition and overnutrition.[5] The implications of both overnutrition and undernutrition indicates that a country can exert rates of infectious diseases and chronic diseases simultaneously: A situation that has not been observed before in history. This new phenomenon of the rising incidence of chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer and type II diabetes along with the presence of infectious diseases such as pneumonia, and tuberculosis is mainly attributed to rapid population growth and the increase in the country's economy. The increase in income has made it possible for people living in urban areas to have access to a wider range of food outlets, to afford transportation and other luxuries of western society that have led to an increase in fast food consumption and a more sedentary lifestyle.


The central government is all set to announce 100 percent Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in single-brandretail trading. The announcement will be made later today.

Sources said that the government was to announce the guidelines for single-brand retail trading later on Tuesday. The norms were ready for permitting 100% FDI in the segment.

At present the government permits 51% FDI in the sector. The move is expected to boost the prospects of global players such as Ikea to set up a wholly-owned venture in India to operate a chain of stores.

Companies that hold 100% stake in Indian ventures will, however, need to follow additional norms such as sourcing at least 30% of the products from micro and small enterprises.

The cabinet had approved the plan in late November but had put the notification on hold following the uproar over allowing foreign chains to open multi-brand stores in India.

Over 40% of children under five in 100 focus districts in India are underweight -- double the average for sub-Saharan Africa -- and 59% stunted, reveals a survey report on hunger and malnutrition released by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Tuesday.
"In the 100 focus districts, 42% of children under five are underweight and 59% are stunted," says the report by HUNGaMA (Hunger and Malnutrition).
It says prevalence of malnutrition is significantly higher among children from low income families. "Children from Muslim or scheduled caste or scheduled tribe households generally have worst nutrition indicators."
The report says that in the 100 focus districts, 51% mothers did not give colostrum to newborns soon after birth and 58% mothers fed water to their infants before six months.
The survey notes that girls seemed to have nutrition advantage over boys in the first months of life. "However, this advantage seems to get reversed over time as girls and boys grow older, potentially indicating feeding and care neglect vis-a-vis girls in infancy and early childhood."
It says that in the 100 focus districts, 66% mothers did not attend school and the ratio of underweight children was significantly higher among mothers with low levels of education.
"The prevalence of underweight children among mothers who cannot read is 45% while that among mothers with 10 or more years of education is 27%. The corresponding figures for child stunting are 63 and 43%, respectively. It was also found that 92% mothers had never heard the word malnutrition."
"11% mothers said they used soap to wash hands before a meal and 19% do so after a visit to the toilet in the 100 focus districts," the report adds.
The report points out that with nearly 43% of children underweight (weight deficit for their age) proportion of underweight children in India was twice higher than the average figure in sub-Saharan Africa.
"The consequences of this nutrition crisis are enormous. In addition to being the attributable cause of one-third to one-half of child deaths, malnutrition causes stunted physical growth. The economic losses associated with malnutrition are estimated at 3% of India's gross domestic product annually."
On the positive side, the report says there is reduction in prevalence of child malnutrition with proportion of underweight children decreasing by 20.3% over a seven-year period (2004-11) with an average annual rate of reduction of 2.9%.
The report says there is an anganwadi centre in 96% of the villages in the 100 focus districts, 61% of them in pucca buildings.
Rohini Mukherjee, team leader of the HUNGaMA survey report, said the survey was aimed at getting latest data on child nutrition in India.
She said that of the 112 districts surveyed in the report, 100 were selected from the bottom of child development district index developed for UNICEF-India in 2009. These 100 districts are spread over six states.
Mukherjee said the HUNGaMA survey was triggered as an idea by the Citizen's Alliance against Malnutrition, a group that includes MPs across party lines and many other prominent personalities.




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Water-related diseases

Malnutrition

Malnutrition is a major health problem, especially in developing countries. Water supply, sanitation and hygiene, given their direct impact on infectious disease, especially diarrhoea, are important for preventing malnutrition. Both malnutrition and inadequate water supply and sanitation are linked to poverty. The impact of repeated or persistent diarrhoea on nutrition-related poverty and the effect of malnutrition on susceptibility to infectious diarrhoea are reinforcing elements of the same vicious circle, especially amongst children in developing countries.

The disease and how it affects people

Malnutrition essentially means "bad nourishment". It concerns not enough as well as too much food, the wrong types of food, and the body's response to a wide range of infections that result in malabsorption of nutrients or the inability to use nutrients properly to maintain health. Clinically, malnutrition is characterized by inadequate or excess intake of protein, energy, and micronutrients such as vitamins, and the frequent infections and disorders that result.
People are malnourished if they are unable to utilize fully the food they eat, for example due to diarrhoea or other illnesses (secondary malnutrition), if they consume too many calories (overnutrition), or if their diet does not provide adequate calories and protein for growth and maintenance (undernutrition or protein-energy malnutrition).
Malnutrition in all its forms increases the risk of disease and early death. Protein-energy malnutrition, for example, plays a major role in half of all under-five deaths each year in developing countries (WHO 2000). Severe forms of malnutrition include marasmus (chronic wasting of fat, muscle and other tissues); cretinism and irreversible brain damage due to iodine deficiency; and blindness and increased risk of infection and death from vitamin A deficiency.
Nutritional status is compromised where people are exposed to high levels of infection due to unsafe and insufficient water supply and inadequate sanitation. In secondary malnutrition, people suffering from diarrhoea will not benefit fully from food because frequent stools prevents adequate absorption of nutrients. Moreover, those who are already experiencing protein-energy malnutrition are more susceptible to, and less able to recover from, infectious diseases.

The cause

Individual nutritional status depends on the interaction between food that is eaten, the overall state of health and the physical environment. Malnutrition is both a medical and a social disorder, often rooted in poverty. Combined with poverty, malnutrition contributes to a downward spiral that is fuelled by an increased burden of disease, stunted development and reduced ability to work. Poor water and sanitation are important determinants in this connection, but sometimes improvements do not benefit the entire population, for example where only the wealthy can afford better drinking-water supplies or where irrigation is used to produce export crops. Civil conflicts and wars, by damaging water infrastructure and contaminating supplies, contribute to increased malnutrition.

Scope of the Problem

Chronic food deficits affect about 792 million people in the world (FAO 2000), including 20% of the population in developing countries. Worldwide, malnutrition affects one in three people and each of its major forms dwarfs most other diseases globally (WHO, 2000). Malnutrition affects all age groups, but it is especially common among the poor and those with inadequate access to health education and to clean water and good sanitation. More than 70% of children with protein-energy malnutrition live in Asia, 26% live in Africa, and 4% in Latin America and the Caribbean (WHO 2000).

Interventions

Interventions that contribute to preventing malnutrition include :
  • Improved water supply, sanitation and hygiene.
  • Health education for a healthy diet.
  • Improved access, by the poor, to adequate amounts of healthy food.
  • Ensuring that industrial and agricultural development do not result in increased malnutrition.

References

WHO. Turning the tide of malnutrition: responding to the challenge of the 21st century. Geneva: WHO, 2000 (WHO/NHD/00.7)
FAO. The state of food insecurity in the world 2000 (FAO, Rome)
See also WHO web site on nutrition
Prepared for World Water Day 2001. Reviewed by staff and experts from the Department of Nutrition for Health and Development and the Water, Sanitation and Health Unit, World Health Organization (WHO).

Highlighting that 42 per cent children were underweight in a country witnessing high growth, today described it as a national shame and said the government could not rely solely on ICDS, a programme for early childhood development, to address it.

"...the problem of malnutrition is a matter of national shame. Despite impressive growth in our GDP, the level of under-nutrition in the country is unacceptably high," he said releasing a report on Hunger and Malnutrition (HUNGaMA) here.

Pointing out that India had not succeeded in reducing the levels of malnutrition fast enough, he said, "Though the ICDS continues to be our most important tool to fight malnutrition, we can no longer rely solely on it."

The Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) scheme is a major national programme that addresses the health and nutrition needs of children under the age of six.

The HUNGaMA report states that the prevalence of child underweight has decreased from 53 per cent to 42 per cent, marking a 20.3 per cent fall over a seven year period with an average annual rate of reduction of 2.9 per cent.

The survey found that the rates of child malnutrition were still unacceptably high in the 100 focus districts with the poorest child development indicators where over 40 per cent of children were underweight and almost 60 per cent stunted.

"We need to focus on districts where malnutrition levels are high and where conditions causing malnutrition prevail," Singh said.

He said policy makers and programme implementers need to clearly understand many linkages - between education and health, sanitation and hygiene, drinking water and nutrition - and then shape their responses accordingly.

2009 Global Hunger Index
The Challenge of Hunger: Focus on Financial Crisis and Gender Inequality
October 14, 2009

The 2009 Global Hunger Index (GHI) ranks 84 developing and transitional countries using three equally-weighted indicators and combines them into one score. The three indicators are:
  1. The proportion of people who are calorie deficient, or undernourished, which is a key indicator of hunger.
  2. The prevalence of underweight in children under the age of five, which is a measure of childhood malnutrition—children being the most vulnerable to hunger.
  3. The under-five mortality rate, which measures the proportion of child deaths that are mainly caused by malnutrition and disease.


Map
Embeddable Map
(Put this map on your website)

Related Websites

India State Hunger Index

Map
A new measure of country performance
Ugo Gentilini, Patrick Webb

The paper presents a new composite indicator – the Poverty and Hunger Index (PHI) – to measure countries' performance towards achieving MDG1 on halving poverty and hunger by 2015. The PHI combines all five official MDG1 indicators, including a) the proportion of population living on less than US$ 1/day, b) poverty gap ratio, c) share of the poorest quintile in national income or consumption, d) prevalence of underweight in children under five years of age, and d) the proportion of population undernourished.

Data for the five MDG1 indicators are compiled for the 81 countries which together account for 90 percent of the world poverty and 85 percent of global undernourishment. The analysis shows a weak correlation between undernourishment and child underweight; this is in line with a growing body of evidence documenting that reducing income poverty or improving the food supply without changing the way young children are fed and cared for does little to reduce levels of undernutrition among children.

India: In a context of unprecedented economic growth (9-10 percent annually) and national food security, over 60 percent of Indian children are wasted, stunted, underweight or a combination of the above. As a result, India ranks number 62 in the PHI out of a total of 81 countries and is included among the low performing countries in progress towards MDG1 with countries such as Nepal (number 58), Ethiopia (number 60), or Zimbabwe (number 74).

Status of Malnourishment in Maharashtra, India

14.6% of children under three years in Maharashtra are acutely malnourished (wasted). This means that they have a 5-20 times higher risk of dying from common diseases like diarrhoea or pneumonia than normally nourished children. The World Health Organization considers 10% a threshold for serious concern and 15% a critical situation!
Nutrition and Malnutrition in Maharashtra

Nutrition and Malnutrition in India



http://motherchildnutrition.org/india/index.html

India has called for scaling upcounter-terror and economic cooperation with Israel, which has emerged as its second largest supplier of sophisticated military weapons.

India has called for scaling upcounter-terror and economic cooperation with Israel, which has emerged as its second largest supplier of sophisticated military weapons.

As you know that Indian Internal security has already been taken over by Pentagon, NASA, CIA and MOSSAD, the diplomatic ploy to enhance Nuclear Strategic allaince in US Israel lead ahead of US Israel attack aignst Iran, is meant to invoke Brahaminical Hindu Nationalism to escalate Ethnic Cleansing of Mulnivasi Bahujan which would herald Mass Detruction Multidimensional.

Israel is a "natural ally" of India, External Affairs Minister S M Krishna said today as he sought a strategy with the Jewish state to "checkmate" the scourge of international terrorism. On the eve of the 20thanniversary of India Israel relations, India is looking to give a fillip to its ties with Israel which is already its second largest supplier of defense equipment. The External Affairs Minister S M Krishna was in Israel to talk of cooperation on security and terrorism.

"My visit primarily would be focusing on the economic content, security, terror – these are some of the issues which are commonly faced both by Israel as well as India," Krishna said with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at his side.


Krishna, the first Indian foreign minister to visit Israel in over a decade, met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and said, international terrorism is a "problem" for both countries and emphasised on need for greater bilateral trade relations.

"India is a natural ally of Israel in all these frontiers of science. I look forward to an increased economic content to our existing areas of cooperation," he said, ahead of his breakfast meeting with Netanyahu.

Krishna said India has learnt so much from Israel, particularly in the field of agriculture and science and technological innovation.

Krishna said terrorism is a "problem" that is being commonly faced by both Israel as well as India.

"So I think we will have to workout a strategy as how we address ourselves to the scourge of international terrorism which has become a curse for the entire humanity.

"I think our efforts should be to checkmate it and ultimately eradicate terror from the face of the earth," Krishna said.

Netanyahu responded by saying that he was looking forward to discussing "all areas of cooperation".

Krishna's comments came in the backdrop of increasing cooperation between Tel Aviv and New Delhi in the field of homeland security and defence.

India's ties with Israel have certainly come a long way. While the state came into existence just a year after India's own independence, diplomatic ties were not established till 1992. India had kept Israel at arms length, as it has been a traditional supporter of Palestinian cause.

But since the normalization of diplomatic relationship ties have steadily improved, especially in the wake of 9/11 when India discovered a fellow sufferer from terrorism in Israel. India's arms imports from Israel have also improved steadily, so that it is now second only to Russia.

India now seeks to lift those ties further. One of the aims of Krishna's visit is to sign the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Israel which could see bilateral trade go from the annual $5 billion currently to $15 billion. But the cooperation on "security and terrorism" is a tune that India should stop playing.
When Israel thinks of terrorists it thinks of Hamas, when India thinks of terrorists, its thinks of Lashkar-e-Toiba, and other Pakistan based groups. India would find it difficult to share the hardline stance on Palestinian that Israel maintains. Moreover the equation of the middle east is rapidly changing. The states emerging from the churning of the Arab Spring have Islamists in power. Too close ties with Israel will damage India's relationship with these countries.


"My visit primarily would be focusing on the economic content, security, terror - these are some of the issues which are commonly faced both by Israel as well as India," external affairs minister SM Krishna said with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at his side.

"We will have to work out a strategy as to how we address ourselves to the scourge of international terrorism which has become the curse for the entire humanity," said Krishna.

"I think our efforts should be to checkmate and ultimately eradicate terrorists from the face of the earth," he added.

Since the 26/11 Mumbai carnage, in which six Israeli nationals were also killed, counter-terror cooperation between India and Israel has intensified.

Krishna on Monday began a two-day visit to Israel, the first by an Indian foreign minister to that country in the last 11 years.

Krishna stressed that he was visiting Israel to chart out a road map for the next two decades of bilateral cooperation. "We have learned so much from Israel, particularly in the field of agriculture and science and technology innovation," he said.

"And India is naturally an ally of Israel in all these frontiers of science and I look forward to an increased economic content to our existing political relationship," Krishna said.

Netanyahu struck an upbeat note on the trajectory of India's relations with Israel which have been blossoming since the two countries established diplomatic ties two decades ago.

"India and Israel are two ancient peoples seizing the future: in technology, in innovation, in enterprise, and I think we can seize it even better by our cooperation," said Netanyahu.

"So I look forward to discuss with you all these areas of cooperation between us, including the signing in the near future of a free trade agreement to multiply our trade and to increase the cooperation economically between India and Israel," he said.

PIL seeks to scrap Aadhar project

Mulnivasi News Agency


Describing the process of preparing all-purpose Aadhar identity cards as illegal, a PIL filed in the Madras High Court has sought to scrap the project, saying personal and biometric details of citizens are being collected without the permission of Parliament. When the petition filed by S Raju of Vriddhachalam in Cuddalore district came up for admission today, the first bench comprising Chief Justice M Y Eqbal and Justice K B K Vasuki declined to stay functioning of the Unique Identity Authority of India (UIDAI) but issued notice to the Centre, Tamil Nadu government and UIDAI. When the petition was taken up, Raju's counsel N G R Prasad submitted that the UIDAI, constituted through an executive order, had no powers to compile personal details of people for Aadhar cards. Headed by co-chairman of Infosys Nandan Nilekani, UIDAI has so far spent Rs 673 crore between January 2009 and Nov 2011, while estimated cost for 2011-2012 would be Rs 1,500 crore. The counsel pointed out that when an attempt was recently made to introduce a Bill in Parliament, the Standing Committee on Finance discussed and rejected it on various grounds. "One of the main grounds raised by the committee is that the Aadhar project is a threat to national security and misuse of data of residents," he claimed. Without any statutory source for its existence, UIDAI has been entering into MoUs state governments, central government organisations and private entities to execute the project, it said, adding people are being asked to provide details like name, age, address, apart from scanned images of fingerprints and iris. "It is significant to state that in the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules 2003, there is no mention of collecting biometric data from the residents." Prasad noted that collection of such details without any permission from any statutory authority or Parliament is unconstitutional and that it amounted to serious infringement of the constitutional rights of citizens.

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance has refused to endore the proposed UIDAI bill siting several security related and other issues.

The UIDAI project or Aadhar, as it has been named by the marketing people, is an extraordinary effort being undertaken in the name of the Government of India. The project plans to capture the identity, address details and biometric data of all residents of India and assign them a Unique Identity Number. Such a project, one believes, would be undertaken under a proper law of the land and shall involve sufficient safeguards regarding the authenticity of the information being collected and also the security and privacy of the large database being built. But almost unbelievably the project has no legal backing at all; the bill that the Parliamentary Committee has rejected is meant to provide a retrospective veneer of legality to the effort. But the Committee has found the proposed bill to be completely inadequate.

The Aadhar effort is a new type of exercise being carried out almost entirely by private parties and interests in the name of the GOI. A visit to any Aadhar registration Centre would show how casually and carelessly this work is being undertaken. The Aadhar centres are often manned by raw young men and women with the barest of education and training. The Aadhar form seeks hardly any information beyond the name of the person, his or her date of birth and place of residence. The applicant is supposed to provide some document to prove his identity and address. But the young persons manning the Aadhar Centre hardly look at the copies of the documents being provided, they never ask for the originals. And, the procedures do not insist upon even a self-attestation of the copies of documents. You are registered for the UI number on the bases of just this much. Persons manning the Aadhar Centre do not seem to be properly trained in capturing the biometric data either; often when the machine fails to capture the finger-prints details of some old person, they simply place their own fingers on the machine and keep the process moving.

It seems almost unbelievable that what purports to be a complete register of Indian citizens is being prepared in such a manner. But it is happening. The UIDAI has already captured the data for about half a crore people and spent 600 crores. All this with mere executive fiat and no legal backing at all.

This is the new India, where private interests are able to hijack such crucial government activities and carry these out in a haphazard manner with government money. It is not surprising that the same interests then go about selling the data collected in the name of the GOI to other private parties. In the recent past the UIDAI has been obliged to take action against several of its vendors for parting with the data collected; but the authority has no procedures in place to seriously control this pilferage.

The project was not supposed to be carried out in this manner. The UIDAI was only meant to provide technological support to the Census Department, who have already collected data for the National Population Register in the course of the houselisting operations undertaken for the 2011 Census. But suddenly the UIDAI, instead of being a support agency, became the primary agency and completely ignored and sidelined the appropriate agency of the Home Ministry legitimately engaged in the task.

The UIDAI way of creating a database of all Indians is completely wrong and inscrupulous. But there are serious issues of security and legality involved in the NPR exercise also. These issues were discussed in the Parliamentary Committee on Home Affairs and also in the Lok Sabha last year. Somehow the effort to create the NPR database along with the Census was carried out and completed without going into the issues that were raised in the Committee and in the Parliament. This happened mainly because of the inability of the main opposition party to make the Government come to grips with especially the security issues. The Parliament shall have to certainly revisit and create an appropriate legal framework with sufficient safeguards to ensure that non-Citizens do not get entered into the National Register and that the NPR data remains secure. But the private and uncontrollable exercise the UIDAI has started has got to be stopped immediately.

Oil Rises for First Time in Four Days on Iran Dispute, Economic Optimism

Q
By Moming Zhou - Jan 10, 2012 9:09 PM GMT+0530Oil rose for the first time in four days on growing concern that geopolitical tension in the Middle East may disrupt supply and as higher stock markets raised economic optimism.
Oil gained as much as 2.1 percent as the European Union brought forward a meeting on a possible oil embargo against Iran to Jan. 23 from Jan. 30. U.S. and European stocks gained as French business confidence climbed from a two-year low last month.
"We've put in at least $10 a barrel, if not more, Iranian risk premium in the price of oil," said Phil Flynn, an analyst with PFGBest in Chicago. "There is a certain optimism about what's going on in the U.S. economy and we are feeling a little bit better about Europe."
Crude for February delivery climbed $1.24, or 1.2 percent, to $102.55 a barrel at 10:35 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. West Texas Intermediate oil traded on the Nymex has surged 20 percent in the past three months.
Brent oil for February settlement increased 75 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $113.20 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange.
"Iran is still the main reason why WTI surpassed the $100 mark," said Hannes Loacker, an analyst at Raiffeisen AG in Vienna. "If there is military escalation, though I don't think this will happen, Iranian oil exports will disappear from the global market. If there's no intensification, the risk premium will be priced out in the next couple of months."
Iran began enriching uranium at a fortified nuclear site, the International Atomic Energy Agencysaid yesterday, a move that drew condemnation from the U.S. and France and may accelerate the imposition of stricter sanctions.

Uranium Enrichment

"Iran has started the production of uranium enriched up to 20 percent" in the Fordo Fuel Enrichment Plant, Gill Tudor, an IAEA spokesman, said in an e-mail. "All nuclear material in the facility remains under the agency's containment and surveillance."
U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said the enrichment represented an intensification of Iranian violations of United Nations agreements on its nuclear program and called on Iran to suspend enrichment activities.
Iran conducted naval exercises near the Strait of Hormuz, the waterway through which almost 20 percent of the world's oil flows, for 10 days ended early this month.
"Iran's bellicose verbiage has succeeded in pushing up oil prices, without closing the Strait of Hormuz, or even firing a shot in anger," Mike Fitzpatrick, Energy Overview editor in New York, said in an e-mail.
U.S. Military Force
President Barack Obama is prepared to use military force to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon if sanctions and diplomacy fail, Dennis Ross, his former special assistant on Iran, said in an interview yesterday.
Obama has "made it very clear" that he regards a nuclear- armed Iran as so great a threat to international security that "the Iranians should never think that there's a reluctance to use the force" to stop them. Ross served two years on Obama's National Security Council and a year as Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's special adviser on Iran.
Oil also gained on signs of European economic recovery. The Bank of France's Business Sentiment Indicator (FRBSI) for manufacturers advanced to 96 in December from 95 in November, when it fell to the lowest since September 2009.
The country's industrial production climbed 1.1 percent in November, lifted by electronics and refinery output, the national statistics office Insee said today. Both numbers beat economists' forecasts.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde will meet in Berlin late today as pressure grows to complete a Greek debt swap needed to put a rescue plan in place.
The deal, hammered out by European Union leaders, Greek officials and the nation's creditors on Oct. 26, called for bondholders to accept a 50 percent cut in the face value of their Greek debt, with a goal of reducing Greece's borrowings to 120 percent of gross domestic product by 2020.
To contact the reporters on this story: Moming Zhou in New York at Mzhou29@bloomberg.net;
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at dstets@bloomberg.net
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-01-10/oil-rises-first-day-in-four-on-iran-dispute-economic-optimism.html
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Palash Biswas
Pl Read:
http://nandigramunited-banga.blogspot.com/
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Palash Biswas
Pl Read:
http://nandigramunited-banga.blogspot.com/
EPFO may reduce interest on PF deposits