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Don’t bother about numbers, your every word valuable: PM to Oppn

17 Lok Sabha begins; PM, other MPs take oath

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PM Modi addressing the media before the start of 17th Lok Sabha, at Parliament House, in New Delhi on Monday

Reaching out to the opposition on the first day of the monsoon session, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said they need not “bother about their numbers” as their every word is “valuable” to the government.

He urged all MPs to be impartial in the House and address issues related to the larger interest of the nation.

Addressing the media outside parliament before the commencement of the first session of the 17th Lok Sabha, Modi said, “When we come to Parliament, we should forget ‘paksh’ (treasury) and ‘vipaksh’ (opposition). We should think about issues with a ‘nishpaksh’ (impartial) spirit and work in the larger interest of the nation.”

 

Underlining the importance of an active opposition in a parliamentary democracy, Modi said he hopes the opposition “will speak actively and participate in House proceedings… I am hopeful that this session will be productive.”

“The role of an opposition and an active opposition is important perquisite in a parliamentary democracy. The opposition need not bother about their numbers. I hope they speak actively and participate in House proceedings…their every word…every feeling is valuable to us,” he said.

Talking about the newly constituted Lok Sabha, Modi said it is historic in various terms as maximum number of women MPs have been elected to the lower house since the Independence.

Modi said as this is the first session with new members, there will be a flow of new energy and a new enthusiasm will be reflected in the House to realise the aspirations of the people.

The prime minister said his government worked on the principal of ‘sabka sath, sabka vikas’ (with all, development for all) during his first term and people reposed their faith in it for a second time.

“As a result, a government has been reelected with a clear majority after several decades,” he said.

PM Modi, other MPs take oath

Leader of the House and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Home Minister Amit Shah were among those who took oath as Members of the 17th Lok Sabha that commenced here Monday.

As soon as the House met, the Members stood in silence for a few minutes as per the convention “to mark the solemn occasion of the first sitting of the 17th Lok Sabha”.

Farooq Abdullah, Chairman of Jammu & Kashmir National Conference shake hands with BJP MP, Swami Sachchidanand Hari Sakshi Ji Maharaj upon their arrival for the first session of 17th Lok Sabha at the Parliament, in New Delhi on Monday 17-06-2019. Photo: Shanker Chakravarty

When Modi’s name was called out by the Secretary General for taking oath, Members from the ruling NDA thumped the desk greeting the Prime Minister with slogans such as ‘Modi Modi’ and “Bharat Mata ki Jai.

National Conference party president, Farooq Abdullah along with Mohammad Akbar Lone and Hasnain Masoodi took oath in Kashmiri as members of 17th Lok Sabha on Monday.

The panel of presiding officers – K Suresh, Brijbhushan Sharan Singh and B Mehtab – took oath as Members after the Prime Minister.

While the Prime Minister and most of Union Ministers took oath in Hindi, Union Ministers Harsh Vardhan, Sripad Naik, Ashwini Chaubey and Pratap Chandra Sarangi took oath in Sanskrit.

While D V Sadananda Gowda and Prahlad Joshi took oath in Kannada, Harsimrat Kaur Badal took oath in Punjabi.

Union Ministers Arvind Ganpat Sawant, Raosaheb Patil Danbe took oath in Marathi, Jitendra Singh in Dogri, Babul Supriyo in English, Rameshwar Teli in Assamese and Debashree Choudhury in Bangla.

BJD leader Mehtab took oath in Odiya.

UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, TMC leader Sudip Bandyopadhyay, Samajwadi Party leaders Mulayam Singh Yadav and his son Akhilesh Yadav, and DMK leaders Kanizmohi and A Raja were present in the House on the occasion.

Congress President Rahul Gandhi was not seen when the House met.

Earlier the new session began with playing of the National Anthem.

Before the House met, Virendra Kumar was sworn in as Pro-Tem Speaker by President Ramnath Kovind at Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Several members took oath in their mother tongue, like most of the YSR Congress Party MPs in Telegu. Many members from Assam took oath in Assamese.

BJP members from Bihar Gopal jee Thakur and Ashok Kumar Yadav took oath in Madhubani.

BJP member from Bihar Jarnardhan Singh Sigriwal expressed desire to take oath in Bhojpuri, but the Lok Sabha Secretary General said the language was not in the eight schedule of the Constitution.

Home Minister and BJP president Amit Shah thumped the desk as Tapir Gao from Arunachal Pradesh approached the mike stand to take oath.

Secretary General of Lok Sabha Snehlata Shrivastava by mistake called petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan to take oath and soon rectified it as the latter is a Rajya Sabha Member.


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Rehab policy for KPs being formulated: Guv

Flags off electric buses in Sgr

Mudassir Kuloo

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Srinagar, Jul 19: Governor Satya Pal Malik Friday said that government is in the process of formulating a policy for rehabilitation of Kashmiri migrant Pandits in the valley.
“A policy is being formulated for rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits (KPs). You will get more details very soon,” Malik told reporters at the sidelines of a function to launch electric buses and release coffee table book on livestock breeding policy.
The return of the Kashmiri migrants to valley was a part of the 2008 Prime Minister financial package of Rs 1,618 crore.
Under this package Rs 7.5 lakh financial assistance was to be given to any family which will undertake renovation/reconstruction of their houses located in the valley. Besides other things, nearly 6,000 government jobs were to be provided to Kashmiri pandits in the valley.
Official figures reveal that around 41,117 migrant families from Kashmir are registered in Jammu and 21,000 others in Delhi and other states. Of the total migrant families living in Jammu, 37,128 are Hindus, 2,246 Muslims and 1,758 Sikhs.
Figures released by Kashmir Pandit Sangrash Simiti (KPSS), an apex body of non-migrant Pandits, reveal that there are 808 Kashmir Pandit families comprising 3464 people residing in the valley. Non-migrant Kashmiri Pandits are living in 292 locations and most of them are putting up in four districts of south Kashmir.
Minister of State for Home Affairs, G Kishan Reddy recently told the Parliament that Government is taking a number of steps for relief and rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits.
“Under the Prime Minister’s Development Package announced on November 7, 2015, the Government of India has approved creation of 3,000 additional State Government jobs for the Kashmiri migrants at a cost of Rs 1,080 crore and construction of 6,000 transit accommodations in the Kashmir Valley at a cost of Rs. 920 crore,” Reddy said.
ELECTRIC BUSES: Speaking on the occasion, Governor observed that the start of electric bus service is a step forward towards providing eco-friendly public transportation with modern facilities to the commuters in the region.
He emphasized on using E-Buses to abate pollution levels and urged people to largely utilise public transport for their daily travel in a bid to contribute towards environment preservation.
On Jammu & Kashmir Livestock Breeding Policy, 2019, Governor noted that the Policy is the first of its kind in the State that aims to increase both the production and productivity of livestock, fish and poultry in Jammu and Kashmir besides generating higher returns for the people engaged in this sector.
Governor congratulated the Department of Animal, Sheep Husbandry and Fisheries for bringing out the Livestock Breeding Policy and observed that J&K’s climate is ideal for the growth of livestock and poultry and if managed scientifically, these sectors have potential to increase the farmer’s income manifold.
Arvind Ganpat Sawant, Union Minister for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises said that the fleet of E-Buses will contribute in reducing the pollution levels.
He said that the Central Government is taking several initiatives to meet the challenges of environmental threats by focussing on improving the quality of mass transportation.
Sawant appreciated the State Government for introducing a Livestock Breeding Policy to improve quality of livestock and promote the welfare of the farming community.

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Guv to hoteliers, houseboat owners: Install STPs or your licenses will be cancelled

Mudassir Kuloo

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Dying Dal - A Kashmiri woman carries forage as she rows her boat through weed-filled Dal Lake in Srinagar – Photo: KM/Umar Ganie

Srinagar, Jul 19: Blaming hotel and houseboat owners for polluting Dal Lake, Governor Satya Pal Malik Friday asked them to install Sewerage Treatment Plants (STPs) otherwise their licences would be cancelled.

Expressing concern over deteriorating condition of Dal Lake, Malik said that untreated sewage coming from hotels and houseboats was directly flowing into the famed lake.

“See the condition of Dal Lake. We are going to cancel licences of those who fail to install STPs. We will restore its lost glory within 18 months. People living in the lake will also be rehabilitated,” the Governor said.

 

Malik was addressing people at the launch of electric buses and releasing of coffee table book on livestock breeding policy, at SKICC.
He also expressed concern over the condition of old Srinagar city.“Down Town Srinagar has not been on the priority list of town planners. They are oblivious to the condition of lanes and by-lanes. People live in poverty in down town,” the Governor said.

Apparently backtracking from government’s recent announcement that Srinagar and Jammu would get metro rails in four years, he said: “We have to start transport which is viable and benefit the city. Are metro rails possible? There has to be a proper transport planning first.”

Malik also stressed on plying of pollution free vehicles. “There is zero-percent pollution at Dachigam. There was a proposal for allowing trekking, picnic and marriage functions at Dachigam which I did not allow,” he said
He also called for promotion of live-stock sector in the Valley.

Union Minister for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises Arvind Ganpat Sawant said electric buses would considerably reduce the pollution levels. “The Centre will provide all possible help to the state. These electric buses will also provide employment to the youth who will run the charging points,” he said.

Advisors to Governor S Skandan, KK Sharma Principal Secretary Animal/Sheep Husbandry, Fisheries and Transport Department Dr Asgar Hassan Samoon also spoke on the occasion.

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Second-hand smoke exposure highest in JK, says new study

Hirra Azmat

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Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir has earned the dubious distinction of having the highest second hand smoke exposure in the country.

Secondhand smoke (or passive smoking) is the tobacco smoke that is exhaled by smokers or is given off by burning tobacco and is inhaled by persons nearby.

Quoting ‘Global Adult Tobacco Survey’, Senior Technical Advisor, Tobacco Control Union, South-East Asia Office, Ashish Kumar Pandey said: “The second hand smoke exposure has been found highest in J&K.”

 

Quoting the findings of the study at a workshop titled “State level inception cum sensitization under National Tobacco Control Programme”, he said: “More than 70 percent of non-smokers are exposed to tobacco smoking at home. Almost 55 percent are exposed to second-hand smoking at their workplaces.”

Explaining about the harmful effects of second hand smoke, he said: “This kind of smoke is dangerous to anyone who breathes it in. It involves carcinogens and other toxic components. It can stay in the air for several hours after somebody smokes.”

“From hair to toe nail, none of the body part remains unaffected because of the tobacco use. Besides, exposure to secondhand smoke during pregnancy increases the risk of still birth, congenital malformations, low birth-weight and respiratory illnesses.”

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), smoking tobacco is globally the second leading cause of heart diseases after high blood pressure. Nearly 12 per cent of cardiovascular deaths worldwide occur due to tobacco abuse and second-hand smoking.

The global health body states that of the seven million lives that tobacco claims worldwide each year, almost 900,000 are passive-smokers
On this occasion, Principal Secretary, Health and Medical Education Atul Dulloo said: “Figures show that in the recent years, the state has witnessed 2-3 per cent decline in the tobacco use. This percentage is not satisfactory.”

“The implementation of Cigarette and other Tobacco Act, 2003 in letter and spirit still remains a challenge. Also the National Tobacco Control Programmes need to be extended to all the districts of J&K. Tobacco kills, should be ingrained in the mind of every person,” he said.

The workshop was also attended by Director Health Services Dr Kunzes Dolma, Commissioner Food Safety J&K Vinod Sharma, Dr Rehana Kausar officer-in-charge (NTCP) Department of Health Services, Srinagar and several stake holders from Health Services.

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