India should have effective strategy to fight alien species: Scientists
Eminent scientists today said the country should draw an effective strategy in the next three years to control the menace of Invasive Alien Species (IAS), a potential threat to biodiversity. The view emerged at a two-day national conference attended by scientists and experts from across the country who assessed the current status of the IAS and its effect on biodiversity. The IAS are plants, animals or organisms which are introduced to regions outside their native ecosystems and which may cause ecological or economic harm, or adversely affect human health.
The conference was inaugurated by Joint Secretary Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Manju Pandey and was jointly organised by the Botanical Survey of India (BSI) and the Zoological Survey of India (ZSI).
PM stands in queue to cast vote; EC orders inquiry on Cong complaint
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today stood in a queue at a polling station in Ranip area here to cast his vote, but opposition Congress took objection to his greeting the crowd outside the booth later prompting the Gujarat election authorities to order an inquiry. Modi, after arriving at the polling booth set up in Nishan High School of Ranip area, which is part of Sabarmati constituency, bowed to greet his elder brother Somabhai Modi who was present there. Somabhai Modi lives in the same locality. Then the prime minister stood in the queue to cast his vote. He was seen talking to other voters while awaiting his turn. After casting the vote, he showed his inked finger to thousands of supporters who had gathered outside and were chanting “Modi…Modi”. The prime minister walked some distance to greet the people standing on both sides of the road. Then he stood on the footboard of his car and waved to the crowd.
Raju flight delay: AI chief meets senior airline officials
Air India CMD Pradeep Singh Kharola today held a meeting of senior officials after a flight carrying Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju was unduly delayed at the airport here, airline sources said. Following the incident involving Delhi-Vijaywada flight on December 13 morning, the airline has already suspended three officials. Sources said Kharola has taken a serious note of the incident, which was mainly a result of coordination issues.
He held a long meeting today of senior official.
Exit polls predict BJP win in Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh
The BJP looks headed for facile victories in both Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh, exit polls by various media houses concluded unanimously after a rancorous campaign which saw sharp exchanges between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress’s president-elect Rahul Gandhi. Almost all exit polls predicted more than 100 seats for the BJP in Gujarat where the party has been ensconced in power for close to two decades now. In Himachal Pradesh, where the electorate has chosen the Congress and BJP alternately in Assembly elections, the exit polls projected a clear majority for the saffron party, unseating the Congress. Today’s Chanakya gave BJP 135 seats in Gujarat and predicted a measly 47 for the Congress, 14 less than the opposition party has in the current Assembly. It predicted a voteshare of 49 per cent for the BJP and 38 per cent for challenger Congress.
Rahul trains guns at Modi, Shah at Kerala rally
Congress president-elect Rahul Gandhi today hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, alleging that he was facing a “crisis of credibility” and had stopped talking about corruption. Gandhi, who was on his first visit to Kerala after being elected as the Congress president, was also unsparing of BJP chief Amit Shah. At a meeting of party workers, he asked the ruling CPI(M) to make its stand clear on its fight against the BJP and “fascist forces” in the country. The Congress leader, who was on a day’s visit here, alleged that the prime minister had “unilaterally” cancelled the Rafale fighter jet deal with France that was decided during the UPA government. “India is no longer going to buy 136 fighter planes and Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) will no longer be the contractor. But the contractor now is going to be a businessman close to the prime minister,” Gandhi alleged.
8 Naxalites killed in police encounter in Telangana: Police
Police said today they have killed eight Naxalites belonging to a newly-formed extremist group, which allegedly indulged in extortion and violence, in a gunbattle in Bhadradri Kothagudem district of Telangana. The encounter took place at around 6.30am in a forest area under Tekulapalli mandal, a senior police official said. According to the official, a police team had launched a combing operation in the forest area after receiving information about the movement of armed extremists. At about 6.30am, the police team noticed people in olive green uniforms carrying weapons, after which they warned them to surrender.