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Modi asks ministers to reach office on time, avoid working from home

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Mumbai: In his first meeting with the new Council of Ministers, Prime Minister Narendra Modi instructed all the ministers to reach office on time every morning and avoid working from home.

He also asked the cabinet ministers to involve their deputy ministers (Ministers of State) in all important decisions of the ministeries. He said the deputy ministers should be given adequate responsibilties.

He further added that Members of Parliament and party workers should be given time for meeting, suggesting that their grievances should be heard.

 

Ahead of the Council of Ministers meeting, the Prime Minister met his Cabinet and outlined the road-map and action plan of his government for the next five years. He took several decisions including triple talaq Bill among others.

This was first-ever meeting of the new Council of Ministers with the Prime Minister. Sources said he spelled out his priorities for Mission 2022 and asked them to present a report card every three months.

Sources said the Prime Minister told his colleagues that he would review the task done by them and would monitor the ‘high priority’ schemes being implemented by the various ministries.

Sources said the Prime Minister was more concerned about the schemes and projects such as ‘housing for all’ related with Mission 2022, the year when the country celebrates its 75th year of Independence.

He spelled out his priorities related to ministries dealing with the social sector. For Rural Development and the newly-constituted Jal Shakti Ministry, Modi outlined specific tasks, the sources said.

At present water crisis, particularly in rural areas, is posing a grave threat for the agriculture sector in the wake of apprehensions of a drought in the western region.

Modi has already asked the ministries to furnish an action plan for their respective departments for the first 100 days.

Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar told media that the meeting of the Council of Ministers was a regular affair, saying it is continuation of the practice started by the Prime Minister in 2014.


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National

Ayodhya on high alert following intelligence inputs

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Ayodhya: Amid VIP movements, Ayodhya has been put on high alert soon after intelligence inputs indicated a possible terror attack in the city.

“We have put more force into action. The force has been alerted. Also, intelligence officials in the civil dress have come here. They are checking all hotels, restaurants and railway stations. The police force is vigilant and keeping a track of all the movements,” Anil Kumar Sisodia, Superintendent of Police City, told ANI.

This comes ahead of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray’s visit to Ayodhya on Sunday along with his party MPs.

 

According to reports, the security has also been heightened keeping in mind the hearing on 2005 Ram Janmabhoomi attack on June 18.

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Seven died while cleaning hotel sewer in Vadodara

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Vadodara: Seven persons, including four sanitation workers, died due to asphyxiation on Saturday while cleaning sewer of a hotel in Gujarat’s Vadodara district, officials said.

The incident happened at a hotel in Fartikui village in Dabhoi tehsil, about 30 km from Vadodara city. Three employees of the hotel were also among those killed.

“When one sanitation worker failed to come out of the manhole, others went inside. All of them died due to asphyxiation,” district collector Kiran Zaveri told PTI.

 
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Manmohan retires from Rajya Sabha

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New Delhi: For the first time in 28 years, former prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh’s name ceased to be part of the list of members of the Rajya Sabha on its Web site, and was included in the list of former members of Parliament.

With the Congress lacking the numbers in the Assam legislature to ensure his re-election, 86-year-old Dr Singh retired from the Rajya Sabha.

Dr Singh, then finance minister in the P V Narasimha Rao government, had debuted in the House on October 1, 1991, from Assam and represented the state for five consecutive terms. He was the leader of the House during his 10 years as PM, and leader of the Opposition from 1998 to 2004.The former PM would now need to wait for the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, an ally of the Congress, to send him to the Rajya Sabha next month or until the next biennial elections in the Upper House in April 2020 when 54 MPs retire.

 

Five Rajya Sabha members from Tamil Nadu retire in July. The DMK, along with its allies, has the strength in the state legislature to get at least three elected to the Rajya Sabha. It has promised one seat to MDMK chief Vaiko.

However, sources said the DMK and the Congress have not had any discussions on the issue.

The Congress could also hope to send Dr Singh to the Upper House from Gujarat if elections to fill the two vacancies from the state take place together.

The vacancies are on account of two Bharatiya Janata Party Rajya Sabha members from Gujarat, Amit Anilchandra Shah and Smriti Zubin Irani, being elected to the Lok Sabha. Shah has debuted in the Lok Sabha from Gandhinagar while Irani is the Lok Sabha member from Amethi in Uttar Pradesh.

The Congress’s numbers in the Gujarat assembly would ensure the party wins one of the two seats, the other going to the BJP, if elections to the two seats are held jointly.

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