‘More needs to be done to give quality, affordable healthcare’

News4u-News Desk- Stating that a mere 1.4 per cent of GDP is spent on healthcare, the Economic Survey on Wednesday highlighted the need for more vigorous efforts to provide quality and affordable healthcare to the country’s population, particularly to the poor and the underprivileged.

“Expenditure on health is just 1.4 per cent of GDP. A lot more needs to be done to provide quality and affordable healthcare for the large Indian population,” the Economic Survey for 2013-14 said.

The allocations for the health sector have increased over the years, it added.

The central government outlay for the health sector in the 12th Plan has been increased by about 200 per cent to Rs 3,00,018 crore over the actual outlay of Rs 99,491 crore in the 11th Plan, the survey said.

The pre-Budget document tabled in the Parliament today by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in selected parameters, the progress made in health sector, however, has been impressive.

For instance, infant mortality rate per 1,000 live births has come down to 42 in 2012 as compared to 110 in 1981.

Likewise, maternal mortality ratio per one lakh live births has come down to 178 in 2010-12 as compared to 301 in 2001-03.

The government has also launched many programmes in the health sector.

The national health mission (NHM) was launched in 2013 to enable universal access to equitable, affordable, and quality health care services.

The total plan outlay under the NHM for 2013-14 was Rs 18,775.35 crore.

Survey also said two reproductive and child health (RCH) programmes- Janani Suraksha Yojna (JSY) and Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakram (JSSK), aim to bring about a change in three critical health indicators- maternal mortality rate, infant mortality rate and total fertility rate.

In order to meet the increased demand for delivery care services, the initiative to introduce 100-bedded maternal and child health (MCH) wings in 158 district hospitals and medical colleges has been taken up, it added.


healthcare Camp

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I&B has granted permission for 795 channels till date: Govt

News4u-News Desk- A total of 795 television channels have been granted permission by Information and Broadcasting ministry to uplink from the country in the news and non-news categories so far, while 235 applications are still pending for inter-ministerial clearances, Lok Sabha was informed on Wednesday.

I&B minister Prakash Javadekar, in reply to a written question in the Lok Sabha, also said during the last three years and current year 200 applications were received for new channels in various languages, out of which 105 were for Malayalam and Kannada language channels.

In reply to another question on whether Doordarshan proposes to launch a ‘Krishi’ channel devoted exclusively to agriculture and farmers, Javadekar responded in the affirmative and said the details were being worked out in consultation with the stakeholders.

“No definite timeframe can be fixed as of now as the start of the channel will depend on the availability of resources and manpower after the details have been worked out,” he said.

Responding to another question on Doordarshan, Javadekar said it was digitising its analogue terrestrial network. “Consequently the number of digitised channels would go up. DD would thereafter be in a position to invite private free-to-air TV channels for meaningful business plan in this regard,” he added.

prakash javdekar

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Amit Shah appointed BJP President

News4u-News Desk- Amit Shah, who delivered crucial Uttar Pradesh to BJP in the Lok Sabha elections, appointed party president on Wednesday.

Shah, a close aide of Modi, was appointed to the top post in BJP at a meeting of Parliamentary Board where incumbent Rajnath Singh resigned after a tenure of one-and-a-half years.

The former Minister of State for Home in Gujarat and who faces charges in the Sohrabuddin fake encounter case is largely credited for BJP’s stunning performance in UP where it got 71 of the 80 Lok Sabha seats.

The meeting was attended among others by Modi, senior leaders L K Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, M Venkaiah Naidu, Nitin Gadkari and Sushma Swaraj.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, who had to table the pre-Budget Economic Survey in Lok Sabha, joined the press conference where the announcement was made by Singh before all these leaders.

“From now and now on, Amit Shah will be the president of the BJP and lead the party. His appointment was asp proved unanimously,” he said flanked by Modi and other leaders.

Shortly after the announcement, Modi and Singh offered sweets to Shah while other leaders including Advani, Joshi, Swaraj and Jaitley gave him bouquets.

As reporters started plying him questions, Shah replied “I will speak later” bringing the brief ceremony to a close.


MASTER STRATEGIST SHAH SCRIPTS HISTORY IN BJP

BJP’s key election strategist who crafted an unprecedented victory in Uttar Pradesh. Shah, 50, scripted history by becoming the youngest president of the party in which veterans have called the shots since its inception.

Considered an invaluable deputy to any neta, he has taken less than a year to catapult himself from a Gujarat BJP strongman to the party’s supremo on the national stage.

Most leaders in the BJP agree that Shah, who was associated with the RSS in his early days, has earned every bit of his success.

What worked eventually in favour of Shah was his extra-ordinary political performance in UP where as BJP’s general secretary in-charge he led the party to a dream run wresting 71 of the total 80 Lok Sabha seats in the politically crucial state.

Together with Apna Dal, a new ally which Shah got on board, the BJP won 73 seats in the state leaving a handful for the ruling SP and the Congress in the state.

Shah’s organizational skills came in handy for the BJP in bordering Bihar as well where the party forged alliances with the LJP and OBC strongman Upinder Kushwaha to score a staggering 22 alone and 31 out of 40 seats with allies and reducing the state’s incumbent JDU government to a virtual naught.

With his master act of scripting LJP leader Ram Vilas Paswan’s return to the NDA fold after over a decade since Godhra riots, Shah managed a massive political makeover for his boss Modi, who had long been denounced by Paswan for the 2002 Gujarat riots.

That apart, Shah’s poaching of LJP and Kushwaha who had been eager to ally with the Congress, forced political realignments in Bihar with the JDU and Lalu Prasad’s RJD coming together to face the BJP’s new political challenge.

UP, Bihar and Gujarat put together, Shah’s stamp was visible in half of the total number of seats the BJP won in the 16th Lok Sabha elections, driving the party to its best ever performance under the Modi-Shah combine.

Political acumen apart, Shah’s controversial past has continued to haunt him until lately. Accused of fake encounters involving Sohrabuddin Sheikh, Tulsi Prajapati among others, Shah spent three months in the Sabarmati jail before he secured bail in 2010.

The bail cleared the hurdles in the way of Shah’s imminent rise in the BJP where he enjoys complete trust and backing of Modi.


Amit Shah appointed BJP President

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Bhullar becomes first Indian-origin player to join NBA

News4u-Sports Desk-Sim Bhullar has become the first player of Indian origin to be a part of the National Basketball Association (NBA) after he signed a summer contract with the Sacramento Kings, a professional basketball team in the US.

21-year-old Bhullar, who is 7.5 feet tall and weighs 360 pounds, is a centre from New Mexico State University.

Originally from Canada, Bhullar’s parents hail from Punjab. His height is in his genes with his father 6.5 feet tall and his being mother’s height 5.10 feet.

Bhullar’s younger brother Tanveer, who is 7.2 feet, also plays college basketball at New Mexico State.

Bhullar’s name was not originally drafted in last month’s NBA Draft, and that might deter him from playing for the Kings when the 2014-2015 season begins later this year.

The Indian-origin player made everyone took note of him in college as he averaged 10.4 points, 7.8 rebounds and 3.4 blocks per game in his two-year career with the Aggies.

In an interview with a Toronto paper ‘The Globe and Mail’, Bhullar said he wanted to make the most of it by dropping out of college after his sophomore year and enter the draft.

“Guys my size don’t have very long careers and you have to take advantage of it and do the best you can with the time you have to play,” Bhullar was quoted as saying by the Globe and Mail.

In 2013, the Kings became the NBA’s first team to have an Indian-origin majority owner — Vivek Ranadive.

Since taking over the reins of the Kings, which was lying low in recent years due to less winning percentages and declining ticket sales, Ranadive has transformed the organisation into one of the better ones in the league.


Sim Bhullar

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Govt taking steps to curb inflation: Sitharaman

News4u-News Desk- The government has taken several steps to contain inflation in the recent past and is regularly monitoring the situation as price stability remains high on its agenda, Parliament was informed on Tuesday.

“Government monitors the price situation regularly and price stability remains high on its agenda. Government has taken several measures to contain inflation in recent past,” Minister of State for Finance Nirmala Sitharaman said in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha.

She said government has taken measures such as bringing onion and potato under the Essential Commodities Act, de-listing of fruits and vegetables from Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee Act, fixing minimum export price of USD 500 per tonne and USD 450 per tonne on export of onion and potato respectively.

Also, an additional 50 lakh tonne of rice has been allocation for distribution towards Below Poverty Line (BPL).

Sitharaman said these steps are likely to have a salutary impact on the availability of these items.

On the role of the Reserve Bank in keeping prices in check, she said the RBI hiked the repo rate thrice during 2013-14 by 0.25 per cent each from 7.25 per cent to 8 per cent as on January 2014.

“The policy rates have been kept unchanged since then. The current policy stance of the RBI is firmly committed to keeping the economy on a disinflationary course, taking Consumer Price Index inflation to 8 per cent by January 2015 and 6 per cent by January 2016,” she said.

In a separate reply, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said higher inflation in some food articles, manufactured products such as chemicals, textiles, rubber, revision in electricity prices and higher inflation in non-administered mineral oils due to increase in global crude oil prices has led to the rise in inflation in May 2014.

Food inflation based on Wholesale Price Index was 6.98 per cent in May 2014, up from 6.34 per cent a month ago.


Nirmala Sitharaman

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1.43 lakh devotees pay obeisance at Amarnath

News4u-News Desk- As many as 1.43 lakh pilgrims have paid obeisance at holy Ice Ligum of Lord Shiva at Amarnath cave shrine in South Kashmir Himalayas since the beginning of pilgrimage this year, Amarnath Shrine board officials said in Jammu.

As many as 1,43,510 pilgrims paid obeisance at Holy Cave since the pilgrimage started on June 28, a spokesman said.

A record number of 14,413 pilgrims performed darshan of Ice Lingam at the Holy Cave on Tuesday, spokesman said.

With sufficient improvement in weather condition in the Yatra area, the Yatris who travelled towards Holy Cave on Tuesday from Baltal and Chandanwari as well as the Yatris who had to stay at intermediate Camps on Monday, paid darshan at Holy Cave on Tuesday.

The clear weather in the morning enabled the Shrine Board to allow the Yatris Camping at Baltal and Nunwan Base Camps to move toward the Holy Cave Shrine.


1.43 lakh devotees pay obeisance at Amarnath

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Special CBI court rejects closure report in DySP murder case

News4u-News Desk- A special CBI court on Tuesday rejected the agency’s closure report giving clean chit to controversial minister Raja Bhaiyya in Kunda Deputy Superintendent of Police, Zia-ul-Haq’s murder case, and directed it to further investigate the matter.

The order was passed by Special Judicial Magistrate (CBI) Shraddha Kumari on an application filed by Parveen Azad, wife of the slain DySP.

“The special magistrate has rejected the closure report filed by the CBI on July 31 last year and has directed it to further investigate the matter” Azad’s lawyer, Khaleeq Ahmad said.

“This is the first step towards justice. The court has ordered for further investigation while rejecting CBI’s closure report. I have lot of expectations from CBI and I hope that the mistakes in agency’s probe will be rectified.

I only want re-investigation and I will continue my fight for justice upto the Supreme Court,” Azad told reporters after the court’s order.

On July 31 last year, CBI had filed closure report on the FIR lodged by Haq’s wife against former minister Raghuraj Pratap Singh alias Raja Bhaiyya and others.

The report was filed by investigating officer Surendra Singh Gurum in the court of in-charge, Special Judicial Magistrate CBI, Neelkant Mani Tripathi.

The CBI in its closure report had given clean chit to Raja Bhaiyya and four others, including Guddu Singh, Rohit Singh, Hari Om Srivastava and Gulshan Yadav.

The agency in its report had said that the polygraph test of the former minister was negative. DSP Haq was killed by a mob on March 2 in Balipur village in Pratapgarh where he had rushed to after a village head was shot dead over a land dispute.

In a complaint to police, his wife Azad had alleged, “On the directions of Raja Bhaiya, Nagar Panchayat chairman Gulshan Yadav, minister’s representative Hari Om Srivastava, his driver Rohit Singh and supporter Guddu Singh first assaulted my husband with sticks and rods and later shot him dead.”

The former minister had to resign from the post following the controversy. The CBI which grilled Raja Bhaiya also got his polygraph test conducted.

After getting clean chit from the CBI, Raja Bhaiyya was re-inducted into the Akhilesh government as food and civil supplies minister in October last year.


DySP murder case

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Pierce Brosnan gets strength from faith

News4u-Entertainment Desk- New York: Former James Bond star Pierce Brosnan credits his faith for helping him through tough times, such as the death of his first wife.

The 61-year-old actor was left devastated when his first wife Cassandra Harris died from ovarian cancer in 1991 and his adopted daughter Charlotte succumbed to the same disease last year, and thinks his religious beliefs and upbringing have given him the strength he needed to carry on, reportedly.

“I would say faith, being Irish, being Catholic, it`s ingrained in my DNA,” Braosnan said. The `Long Way Down` actor, who is now married to Keely Shaye Smith, also admitted to being a keen artist.

“I paint landscapes, figuratives. I painted all my life. In fact, I started as a commercial artist,” he said. PTI


Pierce Brosnan

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Almost 100 killed in Uganda clashes since weekend: army

News4u-News Desk- At least 96 people have been killed in four days of clashes between tribal gunmen and Ugandan troops in the west of the country, the army said on Tuesday.

“Since the operation began we have killed 75 attackers,” army spokesman Ninsiima Rwemijuma in the Rwenzori region said.

Five soldiers, five policemen and 11 civilians were also killed, making up a total of 96 dead in the mountainous and rural region which borders Democratic Republic of Congo.

Attackers, who police said were armed with machetes, spears and guns, launched a series of surprise attacks Saturday and Sunday, with the army sending in extra troops.

Fighting is ongoing, although the army says it is now only between its forces and the insurgents.

“We expect no more civilians dying because we have deployed enough forces on the ground and neutralised attacks,” Rwemijuma said.

Ugandan police say the attacks are ethnic battles, with the local majority Bakonzo people trying to kill the minority Basongora people, because of “long-standing differences of culture and over land,” police spokesman Fred Enanga said.

“There is a tribal conflict, some of the Bakonzo do not want the minority groups recognised as kingdoms within what they perceive to be the larger Kingdom of Rwenzori, with Bakonzo the dominant tribe,” Enanga added.

The death toll is feared to rise further. “The number of the attackers killed during contact with our forces or dying due to wounds may go up,” Rwemijuma said.

“Some may have escaped with gunshot wounds, and that is why we are engaging sniffer dogs to flush out those who may be injured and hiding, or just hiding to avoid detection.”

Security forces have arrested over 80 suspected fighters.


Almost 100 killed in Uganda clashes

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Bombings kill eight in Iraq

News4u-News Desk- Bombings north of Baghdad killed eight people on Tuesday, police and a doctor said, as Iraq struggles to regain ground overrun in a major jihadist-led offensive.

In the deadliest attack, a suicide bomber detonated an explosives-rigged vehicle at a checkpoint south of Samarra, killing five people, among them three police, and wounding seven others, including four police.

And a roadside bomb killed three federal police and wounded two more west of Samarra, a sensitive city home to a revered Shiite shrine that was bombed in 2006, sparking a Sunni-Shiite sectarian conflict that killed tens of thousands of people.


Bombings kill eight in Iraq - file pic

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