- Britain to award 60 Jubilee Scholarships to Indian Students
- Narayana Murthy among Fortune 12 greatest Entrepreneurs
- Government stays the Death Sentence of Balwant Singh Rajoana
- Bihar CM Office goes Green
- Army Chief’s Letter creates ruskus in Paliament
- Salman Khan becomes an Investor in Yatra.com portal
- Sachin will play IPL 5 says Mumbai Indians
- The Biography of Indian Army Chief V K Singh
- Indo American Upendra Chivukula to run for US Congress Seat
- Sikhs in Jammu and Kashmir join protests of Death for Balwant Singh Rajoana
Posted: 28 Mar 2012 05:00 PM PDT
Indians have more chances of getting scholarship in Britain. British Prime Minister David Cameron Wednesday announced 60 new “Jubilee Scholarships” to be awarded in India for one-year masters course in Britain, a statement said.
Funded by the British Council and the British government, the scholarships have been launched as part of the celebrations for Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee. The aim is to enable exceptional talent from across India to come and study masters courses in business, administration, manufacturing, science or technology.
“We’re delighted that we’re able to offer this opportunity for sixty Indian scholars to study in the UK. A scholarship is a fitting way to mark the occasion of the Diamond Jubilee, as it is the creation of new opportunity – not just for the student, but for the host institution to benefit from Indian perspectives and ideas, for new friendships to be made and new links to be created and fostered between our two countries,” said Rob Lynes, the British Council’s director in India.
The awards will be open to applicants from all over India, and the scheme aims to include students from every Indian state among the awardees. Each award will cover university tuition fee, living expenses for the duration of the scholarship (maximum 12 months), a month-long internship in the Britain, return airfare and a British visa.
The last date to apply online is April 30. Further details are available on the British Council’s website: www.britishcouncil.org/india-scholarships-jubilee_scholarships.htm
Posted: 28 Mar 2012 09:26 AM PDT
Fortune magazine has listed Infosys co-founder N.R. Narayana Murthy among the 12 “greatest entrepreneurs of our time” with Apple’s late chief Steve Jobs, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
The list is topped by Jobs, whom Fortune calls “our generation’s quintessential entrepreneur. Visionary. Inspiring. Brilliant. Mercurial” while Gates is second for turning “concepts into companies” and changing the “face of business”.
“The outsourcer” Murthy, who has been ranked tenth, “proved that India could compete with the world by taking on the software development work that had long been the province of the West,” the US magazine said.
The “visionary founder” of Infosys, has built “one of the largest companies in India, helping to transform that economy and put it on the world stage”, it noted citing his lesson that an organisation starting from scratch must coalesce around a team of people with an enduring value system.
“As one of six co-founders of Infosys and the CEO for 21 years, Murthy helped spark the outsourcing revolution that has brought billions of dollars in wealth into the Indian economy and transformed his country into the world’s back office,” the magazine said.
“It is all about sacrifice today, fulfilment tomorrow,” Murthy, 65, who is now chairman emeritus, is quoted as saying. “It is all about sacrifice, hard work, lots of frustration, being away from your family, in the hope that someday you will get adequate returns from that.”
Posted: 28 Mar 2012 09:03 AM PDT
Indian Government has finally put a temporary full stop on the death sentence of Balwant Singh Rajoana, which was scheduled for Saturday.
The Government will wait for the verdict of Supreme Court in this matter. The union ministry of home affairs (MHA), in a letter to Punjab’s home secretary Wednesday (March 28), stated that the execution of Rajoana is stayed till the apex court’s order on the appeal is received or the president decides on the mercy petition for Rajoana filed by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC).
The development was revealed by Punjab Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal and his deputy Sukhbir Singh Badal in New Delhi after their meeting with President Pratibha Patil to whom they submitted a petition seeking mercy for Rajoana.
“As per the procedure regarding petitions of mercy in death sentence cases, the execution of Balwant Singh Rajoana is stayed till the order of the Supreme Court in the matter of Criminal Appeal No. 2277/2011 and 1464/2011 or till the order of the President of India on the said mercy petition, whichever is later,” said MHA’s joint secretary (judicial) J.L. Chugh said.
The Badal father-son duo had told reporters that they have a letter from the central government staying the hanging of Rajoana, convicted and sentenced to death by a Chandigarh court.
The central government’s move comes after a tense build-up in Punjab in the last few days culminating into a bandh (shutdown) across the state Wednesday called by radical Sikh organisations.
Chief Minister Badal welcomed the decision to stay Rajoana’s execution.
“We welcome the decision. We are committed to maintaining peace and law and order at all costs,” he said.
Punjab Congress president Amarinder Singh also welcomed the move.
“This will go a long way in maintaining peace in the state,” Amarinder Singh said in Chandigarh.
The stay on Rajoana’s execution came on a day when Punjab saw a shutdown to protest the scheduled hanging. The bandh affected life in most parts of Punjab but the man facing death remained defiant.
Rajoana, lodged in Patiala’s central jail, 80 km from Chandigarh, issued a letter through his sister Kamaldeep Kaur Wednesday appealing to people to maintain peace even after his death.
He said he will not submit any mercy petition to the president or prime minister to get his death sentence commuted, and added that he was waiting to die Saturday.
Quoting her brother’s letter, Kamaldeep Kaur told media outside Patiala jail Wednesday: “My brother has appealed for peace. He said that he will not seek clemency.”
The area around the prison came under heavy security cover, said Patiala police chief Gurpreet Singh Gill. Barricades were put up on roads leading to the complex.
On Wednesday, shops and commercial establishments were closed in most places across Punjab. Saffron colour flags were put up on buildings as well as houses and shops to portray defiance and protest marches were taken out in many places demanding clemency for Rajoana.
Educational institutions too were closed. There were fewer state transport and private buses on the roads.
But other traffic was normal on most national and state highways. Protesters did block some roads in Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Bathinda, Patiala and Amritsar for some time.
Additional Director General of Police S.K. Sharma said there was no major incident of violence.
Minor violence was reported from Patiala. There was tension at Lehra and Tapa towns in southwest Punjab as Rajoana supporters forced traders to close down their establishments.
In Patiala, a clash took place between two groups. In Jalandhar, police used batons to disperse a mob at Adda Hoshiarpur area as some people armed with swords tried to stop a train.
A clash was also reported in the industrial town of Phagwara, 120 km from here between two groups, forcing the police to intervene.
The call for the shutdown was given by Sikh organisations like Khalsa Action Committee, Dal Khalsa, and Akali Dal (Panch Pardhani). The head clergyman of the Akal Takht, the highest temporal seat of Sikh religion, had also appealed to the people to stay indoors.
“The bandh was complete across Punjab,” Dal Khalsa spokesman Kanwarpal Singh told IANS.
A court in Chandigarh Tuesday directed that the BKI terrorist be hanged Saturday, for the high-profile assassination that took place some two years after a bloody decade-long Sikh separatist campaign was crushed in 1993 after the loss of some 25,000 lives.
In New York, Human Rights Watch urged the Indian government not to hang Rajoana, saying it was opposed in principle to capital punishment.
Posted: 28 Mar 2012 05:57 AM PDT
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has opted to go green. Solar energy will now light up his official residence-cum-office.
“The cabinet has approved Rs.4.5 crore for installing sloar panels and other equipment,” an official said.
The Bihar Renewable Energy Developoment Agency has been assigned the work.
Last year, Nitish Kumar had expressed a desire to convert the thermal power system to a solar one.
Officials say that new and renewable energy sources have the potential to generate around 2,000 MW of power in the state.
Posted: 28 Mar 2012 04:01 AM PDT
Army Chief of Staff General V.K. Singh, in a letter to Manmohan Singh, had pointed out a shortage of arms and ammunition in the armed forces and raised questions if the country was ready for a war.
According to reports, the letter, written March 12, states that army tanks have run out of ammunition. The letter emphasizes the need to bridge the shortcomings and bring the army to fighting level.
The Defense Minister said successive governments attach priority to the defence preparedness and that the government was committed to providing the best equipment to the forces.
“I can assure this nation it is our intention to keep it (armed forces) strong. Government will do everything necessary to ensure that our defence forces are provided and trained to make them best fighting forces in the world,” he said.
Agreeing that the issue should not be raised publicly, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Arun Jaitley asked for assurance on the “integrity” of the procurement process.
“While I agree we will all have to exercise utmost restraint and not make it issue of public debate… across the media, too many pieces of information which disturb us are coming with regard on procurement process,” Jaitley said.
“Attach utmost priority to the fact that there are no malpractices in it,” he said.
The defence minister then assured the members that procurement process was amended time to time and strong action was taken if any violation was found.
The minister expressed happiness that the opposition and government were united on the issue of national security.
“I am very very happy to hear observations of the opposition leader and other leaders of the house… whatever be our difference, when it comes to national security we are one,” Antony said.
While the Rajya Sabha saw two adjournments, the Lok Sabha was adjourned twice but over the issue of statehood to Telangana.
“Why was this letter written and how was it leaked and reached the media… there are a lot of questions that need to be answered as it relates to the country’s security,” Congress spokesperson Rashid Alvi told reporters.
Posted: 28 Mar 2012 03:00 AM PDT
Bollywood star Salman Khan has turned into a businessman – he has invested in the online travel portal Yatra.com and will also be the face of its new marketing campaign in India and the US.
The association will strengthen the company’s connect with the masses and increase the brand’s recall value in tier-II and III towns, said a press statement.
Salman is looking forward to the venture.
“I am really excited about my association with Yatra.com. This is not a normal brand association, where I am there just for face value. With Yatra, I am also now a shareholder,” said Salman in a statement.
“I have immense confidence on the brand and am hopeful that the association will be beneficial for the both of us,” he added.
The “Dabangg” star’s NGO, Being Human, too will benefit from this association.
As part of the endeavour, Yatra.com will contribute a token amount to Being Human every time a transaction takes place on their website. The company will also sell Being Human merchandise on its website, the sale of which, again, will be contributed to the NGO.
“We have always wanted expand to newer mass markets and associating with Salman would enable us to do the same,” said Dhruv Shringi, CEO and co-founder, Yatra.com.
The new marketing campaign of the brand will be launched in April.
Posted: 28 Mar 2012 01:54 AM PDT
Mumbai Indians says skipper Sachin Tendulkar, who is in London for a routine check-up of an old toe injury, will be available for the fifth season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) that begins April 4.
“Mumbai Indians captain Sachin Tendulkar will be joining the in-progress camp at Wankhede Stadium from 31st March 2012 and is fully available for the entire IPL season 5. Sachin is in the UK to consult his doctor and will be back in India to join the camp from 31st March,” Mumbai Indians said in a statement Wednesday.
Tendulkar had to rush to London Tuesday for a checkup on an old toe injury, which has resurfaced and might need surgery. He also missed Rahul Dravid’s felicitation ceremony here Tuesday evening.
Tendulkar picked up the injury nearly a decade ago. But it came back to haunt him last years forcing him to miss the ODI series in England in September. He had to consulted a specialist in London and was advised four weeks’ rest.
Tendulkar was also ruled out of Champions League Twenty20, which Mumbai Indians won under the stand-in-skipper Harbhajan Singh.
The IPL starts in Chennai, where Tendulkar-led Mumbai Indians, the last year’s runner-up takes on defending champions Chennai Super Kings, led by India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhone at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium.
Posted: 28 Mar 2012 01:43 AM PDT
General Vijay Kumar Singh (Gen. V. K. Singh) is the 24th Indian General of the Indian Army and currently the Chief of Army Staff. He was born on 10 May 1951 at Khadki Military Hospital, Pune. His Family comes from Bapora village in Bhiwani district in Haryana. His father was a Colonel in the Indian Army and grandfather a senior Junior Commissioned Officer (JCO)
He graduated from the Defence Services Staff College as a honours graduate of the United States Army Infantry School, a graduate of the Rangers Course at Fort Benning and the United States Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.In the US for the Rangers course, he came first in combat operations.
After joining army in 1970, he had fought Indo-Pakistan War of 1971 and was also the Part of Operation Pawan. which was aimed to take control of Jaffna from the Tamil Tigers in late 1987 to enforce the disarmament of the LTTE as a part of the Indo-Sri Lankan Accord.
He became Chief of Army Staff on 31 March 2010, and was the first commando to achieve that position.
As a fourteen year old boy, Singh wrote his year of birth as 1950 in his application form for admission to the National Defence Academy (NDA) in 1965. His father provided the NDA with documentation (a certificate from 14 Rajput Regiment’s commanding officer certifying Vijay Kumar Singh’s date of birth as 10 May 1951 as per service records of the father) on 3 August 1965 correcting the mistake much before VK Singh took the NDA’s written exam in June 1966. The Indian Military Academy (IMA) where he received training also corrected his date of birth as 10 May 1951 when he submitted documentary evidence. However, the Military Secretary branch recorded his date of birth as 10 May 1950 on the basis of his application form to NDA. The records in Adjutant General (AG) Branch of the Indian Army, which is the official record keeper of the army, show Singh’s date of birth as 10 May 1951
Posted: 28 Mar 2012 01:24 AM PDT
Upendra Chivukula, an Indian American member of the New Jersey state assembly, plans to run for US Congress with the hope of unseating Republican Leonard Lance, who is seeking a third term.
Chivukula, a 10-year assembly veteran who chairs the Telecommunications and Utilities Committee, is the state’s first and only Indian-American lawmaker. He is also a former mayor and councilman in Franklin Township.
Only two Indian Americans have served in the US House of Representatives to date. Dalip Singh Saund was the first Asian immigrant to be elected to Congress in 1956 from California. He was re-elected to a 2nd and 3rd term, winning over 60 percent the votes.
Louisiana governor Bobby was the second Indian American elected to Congress in 2004. Jindal secured reelection in 2006 with 88 percent of the vote, but quit in 2007 when he was elected governor.
“If you look at the Congress, there’s a 10 percent approval rating,”
Chivukula, 61, an electrical engineer who moved to the United States from India when he was 24, was quoted as saying by nj.com
Chivukula said he wants to run “given all the debacles that happened last year because of the stalemates in Congress and the lack of focus on how we can come out of this recession and create jobs and the economy.”
“With my background I think I can contribute to having some discussion and making a difference,” he said.
Chivukula said he does not know if anyone else is seeking the Democratic nomination to run against Lance.
If he wins the nomination, he faces an uphill battle in the November election as the 7th District, once competitive, got more friendly for Republicans after a state commission redrew congressional district lines in December.
“Well, unless you try you never know,” said Chivukula.
Upendra Joge Chivukula – A short Biography
Born on October 8, 1950) is an American Democratic Party politician, who has served in the New Jersey General Assembly since 2002, where he represents the17th Legislative District.
In 2001, Chivukula became the first Indian-American elected to the New Jersey General Assembly and the fourth Indian-American in the United States to be elected to state office.
Chivukula has been the Assembly’s Deputy Speaker since 2007. He serves in the Assembly on the Telecommunications and Utilities Committee (as Chair) and the Appropriations Committee.
Assemblyman Chivukula previously served on the Franklin Township Council, joining in 1997, and serving as its Mayor of Franklin Township, New Jersey in 2000 and its Deputy Mayor in 1998.In Franklin Township, he has also served on the Franklin Township Community Foundation, Finance Oversight Committee, Traffic Management Committee, Fire Prevention Board, Emergency Life Support Delivery, Integrated Communications Committee, Emergency Management, Franklin Township Planning Board, Economic Development Committee, Community / Senior Center Steering Committee and the Bicentennial Celebration Committee. Chivukula has served on the Somerset County Affordable Housing Board of Trustees and the Middlesex County Cultural and Historic Commission. He was appointed by then Governor of New Jersey James Florio to be a Public Member of the New Jersey State Board of Social Work Examiners, where he served from 1994 to 1997.
Posted: 28 Mar 2012 01:00 AM PDT
Sikhs in Jammu and Kashmir Wednesday joined their counterparts in Punjab to protest Balwant Singh Rajoana’s hanging scheduled for Saturday. Hundreds of Sikhs held a sit-in at Raj Bagh, blocking the Jammu-Pathankote route that brings supplies to the state from outside, demanding that Rajoana not be hanged. The state’s summer capital Srinagar also saw protests at city centre Lal Chowk.
“This protest is in solidarity with Sikhs in Punjab who have joined the cause of saving the life of Rajoana,” Sukhdev Singh, a protestor at Raj Bagh, told mediapersons.
Rajoana’s hanging has become an issue in Jammu and Kashmir because the mercy petition of parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, a Kashmiri, is still pending with President Pratibha Patil.
Sikhs comprise around 3.6 lakhs of Jammu and Kashmir’s one crore population.
During the 1980s, Jammu region had witnessed a series of acts of terror by Sikh terrorists.
Dozens of Sikh protesters also assembled in Srinagar’s Lal Chowk area, demanding that the hanging of Rajoana be deferred. They raised slogans against United Progressive Alliance chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
“The culprits of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots are roaming free while the hanging of Balwant Singh is being hastened,” said a Sikh protester.
Police intervened to disperse the protesters. Around a dozen Sikh protesters were arrested.
Police have mounted a vigil across the state because of the fear of protests flaring up in Sikh dominated areas.
“We are alive to the situation,” a senior police officer told IANS.
Rajoana has been convicted in the assassination case of Beant Singh, who was Punjab chief minister between 1992 and 1995 and was largely credited with wiping out terrorism there. He was killed by a human bomb, Dilawar Singh, at the high security Punjab civil secretariat here Aug 31, 1995. Rajoana was the second human bomb to be used in case the first assassin failed.
Rajoana, during the entire 11-year trial, had admitted that he alone was responsible for the killing of Beant Singh. He had refused to defend himself in court.
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