Modi govt moves to include transgender children in schools

transgender2NEW DELHI: The Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry has advised all States and Union Territories (UTs), barring Jammu and Kashmir, to take appropriate action for the inclusion of “third gender’’ children among socially and educationally backward classes for admission in educational institutions under the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) to universalise elementary education.

This is in keeping with the Supreme Court order of April 15, 2014, to treat and grant legal recognition to the “third gender”. Continue reading

Nuclear fog hangs over Modi’s visit to US

Obama-ModiNEW DELHI: As the Indian administration gears up to launch a civil nuclear cooperation blitz with the US and reiterate its petition to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Washington in September, industry experts said that decisions in these complex matters “will not materialise overnight,” and New Delhi may have “painted itself into a corner,” on nuclear liability. Continue reading

India’s life expectancy improving

populationNEW DELHI: India’s life expectancy has increased from 58.5 years in 1990 to 66.4 years in 2013. While this is a significant increase, both Pakistan and Bangladesh have slightly better life expectancy.

Among the BRICS countries, only South Africa has a lower expectancy at 56.9 years, primarily due to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. China’s life expectancy is 75.3 years. Continue reading

Modi wants 24-hour point-to-point rail, road connectivity and ports

MODINEW DELHI: From building coastal expressways as part of a plan to upgrade the road and rail network to ensure that a person can reach any point in the country within 24 hours, to boosting labour reforms so that workers are employed for “fixed terms” instead of on contract; from new legislation on conflict of interest to adding a health knowledge institute to every district hospital — a 17-point people-oriented agenda has been sent by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to his ministries.

While Modi’s wishlist was sent on July 10, all the ministries were told to submit detailed action plans, with sharp focus on delivery and implementation, by July 20 so as to put the agenda in place when the NDA government completes its first 100 days in office in August-end. Continue reading

Pakistan opens arms to Modi

modi2NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi would be welcomed whenever he chooses to visit Pakistan, said the country’s envoy, hinting at progress on the proposed meeting between the foreign secretaries of two countries.

Speaking to journalists at the press club of India on Friday, Pakistan high commissioner Abdul Basit pushed for improving ties between the two countries. Continue reading

BRICS bank to open newer opportunities, says Modi

modibris-1BRAZIL: Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants to expand cooperation with South American countries in areas like tele-medicine, tele-education and e-governance and promised to share India’s expertise in information technology with countries in the region.

In a statement made during the meeting of BRICS leaders with leaders of South American countries on Wednesday, Modi said India will “work closely with South America than ever before…at the bilateral level, as a BRICS member, in the G-77, as well as other international forums.” Continue reading

Tata to double its data centre capacity in India

tatadataNEW DELHI: Global Internet solutions provider Tata Communications said that it has plans to invest USD 200 million over a period of three years to double its data centre capacity in India.

“We plan to invest more than USD 200 million towards doubling capacity in India from 5 lakh square feet to 10 lakh square feet over a period of three years,” Tata Communications’ Growth Ventures CEO Rangu Salgame said while announcing the launch of second data centre in Delhi. Continue reading