#Mumbai- ‘Aadhaar not mandatory yet’- #goodnews #UID


 

Mar 14, 2013 | Age Correspondent | Mumbai
Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan on Wednesday assured the legislative council that possessing an Aadhar number would not be made mandatory for accessing any benefits of government schemes unless 80 per cent of the population of the district has been given Aadhar numbers.
The CM was responding to a calling attention motion moved by Congress MLC Sanjay Dutt and others regarding slow pace of Aadhar registration process. Mr Dutt said that Aadhar number would become mandatory for various things such as gas cylinders, school admissions, PF, pension, scholarships etc.
Mr Dutt said that the citizens are finding it difficult to obtain the Aadhar number because of inadequate number of registration centres and machines for registration. He and other MLCs pointed out that citizens have to wait for hours together to register for thr Aadhar number and in several cases, the cards sent by post have returned undelivered because the address of a person is incorrectly recorded at the time of the registration.
Responding to the motion in the legislative council, Mr Chavan said that the Aadhar Card scheme was an ambitious scheme and that priority was being given to enrol beneficiaries of Central government schemes. “The Aadhar card will be linked to schemes only in the six districts, where direct cash transfers are being implemented. In all other districts, where less than 80 per cent have been registered for Aadhar cards, it will not be made mandatory. These instructions have been issued to all concerned departments,” the CM said.
Earlier, minister of state for IT Fauzia Khan informed the House that till date around 5.43 crore citizens in the state have registered for the Aadhar card and presently, aro-und 4,200 machines have been deployed for registrations. “The government now plans to increase the number of machines used for registering the cards by another 2,000 and the district collectors have been asked to choose agencies at the local level to carry out registration work,” Ms Khan said.
The minister also said that right now 50,000 cards were being generated on a daily basis, which they want to increase to more than a lakh per day. “Those who have registered their names, but not received Aadhar numbers, will be provided e-Aadhar numbers,” she said.

 

 

#RIP- Mahant Veer Bhadra Mishra, Sankat Mochan Mandir Kashi-Benaras


 

A deeply spiritual man, who has ensured Benaras-Kashi remained peaceful and calm after the ghastly attack on the Sankat Mochan Mandir(7.3.2006), Mahant Veer Bhadra Mishra passed away yesterday
Deeply Committed to India s syncretic ethos, opposing the politics of division and the demolition of the Babri Masjid Mahantji s dream of a clean Ganga Mata remains a distant dream

We deeply mourn his loss

He had been part of CJP-MSD s meeting in Mumbai on 27.7.2006 after the ghastly train bombings in Mumbai appealing for peace and cal, emphasising that no Faith sanctions Terror and Violence

 

 

 

Professor Veer Bhadra Mishra was an engineer and Hindu priest who has dedicated his life to clean up his beloved River Ganges. “I am a part of Ganga and Ganga is a part of me,” he used to say. “I want not a single drop of sewage going into the river.” Besides an activist campaign that has educated millions about problems facing rivers around the world. Mishra, a former professor of hydraulics, has launched practical projects. One of these now provides clean drinking water through new wells to six neighboring villages whose residents were getting sick on Ganges water. He was also working hard with University of California scientists on plans for an alternative technology system. It is powered by gravity rather than electrical power, uses bacteria and algae to eliminate pollutants, and not only purifies river water but can be used to irrigate farmland and grow fish. In 1999 Dr. Mishra was nominated by Time Magazine as “hero of the planet” for bringing the plight of the Ganga to the world’s attention, inspiring other “riverkeepers” around the world.

CJP

 

PRESS RELEASE- Punjab Police implicating farmers under Sec 302 of IPC Barbaric


Chandigarh, March 13

Association of Democratic Rights (AFDR), Punjab held a press conference in Kisan Bhawan, Chandigarh on 13the March and condemned the ongoing arrests of around 2000 farmers and leaders of farmer organisations in Punjab.

AFDR said that the way Punjab police has implicated the farmers and their leaders under the Sections of IPC like 302 is undemocratic and barbaric act. General secretary Prof. Jagmohan Singh, State president Prof. Ajmer Singh Aulakh, Press secretary Buta Singh, Organizing secretary Narbhinder, finance secretary Tarsem Lal and Publication secretary Pritpal were present at the conference.

The AFDR said that due to ruthless economic policies of the state and central government, the farmers are in deep crisis in the state. So to lodge protest and struggle for their demands is the democratic right of the farmers.

The AFDR said that instead of indulging into ruthless repression the government should have adopted democratic means and should have engaged the farmers and their organizations in negotiations.

Significantly, the Punjab police raided 319 separate locations on the morning of March 6 and arrested 155 farmer leaders. Following that total 1353 people were arrested and they were sent to various jails in the state. The situation has led resistance and restlessness among various sections of the society.

Crossing all limits of democratic set up, the police even arrested those people who had gone to meet the jailed leaders and activists. The flag marches were organied in Mansa district. In Amritsar district besides, Amritsar police, around 1400 Indian reserve police force has been called to supress the farmers.

Even those who have been arrested have been shifted to jails which are faraway from their home districts. The AFDR understands that it is being done to demoralize the protesting farmers.

The Association also feels that instead of going for an independent probe in the death of ASI in Taran Taran, the police have acted with a bad intention of settling the score and they have booked 13 farmer union activists under Section 302 of IPC for charges of murder. It has been done despite the fact that the postmortem report of the ASI says that he died due to cardiac arrest and there were no signs of any injury on his body.

The Association once again demands from the state government to start political dialogue with farmers instead of slaughtering the democratic rights by organizing flag marches and mass arrests.

According to the facts collected by the AFDR following number of people were arrested from various places and have been sent to jail:

Gurdaspur 240, Mansa 250, Nabha 143, Patiala 8, Fardikot 600 , Sangrur 237, Jalandhar 36, Taran Taran 10, Moga 100, Ferozpur 83, Fazilka 80, Nawan Shahr 16, Barnala 12, Ludhiana 8. (70 women are jailed in Faridkot jail.)

Buta Singh

Press secretary

AFDR, Punjab
########

 

Press Club Mumbai condemns the acid attack on Tarun Bharat reporter


Press Club Mumbai condemns the acid attack on Tarun Bharat reporter

The Press Club Mumbai strongly condemns the dastardly attack on Dinesh
Choudhary (40), his wife Arsana and teenage daughter Rashmi in Purna town of
Parbhani district in Maharashtra.

Mr. Choudhary is a reporter with the Tarun Bharat. He was attacked with acid
on Tuesday late night when he was at his home. In the acid attack he and his
wife and daughter got injured. The assailants ran away after throwing acid
on them.

The attackers are believed to be connected with the ruling political party
and one of them is President of Purna taluka Congress. Choudhary had been
writing against Guthka Mafia for his newspaper Tarun Bharat (Sholapur).
Guthka is banned in the state of Maharashtra.

We request Shri R R Patil, state home minister to take stern action against
the assailants and conspirators howsoever influential he is. The increasing
number of attacks on journalists in Maharashtra is a matter of serious
concern. These attacks are aimed to silence journalists from performing
their professional duties.

Thanks & regards,

Secretary
Press Club Mumbai

March 14, 2013

 

PRESS RELEASE-International Anti Big Dam day- People oppose Vishnugad-Peepalkoti HEP in Ganga valley


A pic of the Tehri dam taken from a moving bus...

 

  • Today on 14th march in Alaknandaganga valley, on the occasion of international Anti Big Dam day demonstration held .on one hand , across the country, there has been no rehabilitation of the people displaced by big dams ,the environmental norms have been grossly violated ,on the other side the proposed power generation has not happened .In Uttrakhand itself the situation of the Dams constructed so far , is very dismal .the dams pose a danger not only for the river but also spell doom for the state. For seeking their rights , Tehri Dam displaced people had to go up to the supreme court only then some semblance of rehabilitation has happened. For the last 21 years litigation has been going on in the case between N.D. Juyal and shekhar singh V/s GoI. The struggle for rehabilitation has been spearheaded by the anti dam campaigners .

    In uttrakhand on Alaknandaganga under construction Vishnugad–Peepalkoti HEP area ,under the banner of Matu Jansangthan, men and women of the affected villages of kaudiya ,Durgapur ,Harsari ,Naurakh ,Tagari etc. protested .In Harsari village people gathered at the Dam site where the construction of tunnel is under way ,the work was stalled and THDC officials were gheroed .After this the procession proceeded to the THDC office at Siyasedh ,shouting slogans like Ganga ko aviral Bahene do ,Badhe bandh Dhoka hai ,and vowed to continued their struggle .

    In the meeting Naurakha Vansarpanch Brihashraj Tadial said that destruction of our future would not be tolerated, we do not want Dams .We have fought till today and the struggle would continue.
    Narinder Pokhariyal said that for the last 9 years our village peopel are facing the consequences of this proposed Dam but the company has not shown any concern . Even Hatt village people are hanging on to mere assurances only.

    Ramlal said that the company has not been able to compensate for the damages done during the survey so the people can well gauge the future .Geeta devi said that due to site blasting at night while the people have lost their sleep the government is sound asleep . Women at various villages Masuri Devi ,Nandi Devi ,Bhadi Devi all protested daming of the river.

    Impact of even samll Hydro Electric Project are in bad in Uttrakhand. For example on July 24 and 3rd aug 2012 ,in Assi ganga river valley due to cloud burst under construction Kaldigahat and Assi ganga Phase-I and II Hydro electric project caused disaster and Bhagirathi ganaga in Maneri Chal phase II caused lots of destruction. There is no account or record of the deaths of the workers . The villages along Assiganga have been badly affected. The pathways have been eroded . But no action, no enquary has been setup on the dam builder.

    Under this situation our struggle is on against dams to save our rivers and our rights over on natural resouces.

    Narendra Pokhriyal, Bindadevi, Ramlal, Keshridevi, Vimalbhai

 

 

 

 

#India – Widows bear brunt of Posco violence #Vaw #tribalrights #indigenous


pc courtesy- odishaviews.com

By, TNN | Mar 14, 2013

GOBINDAPUR (JAGATSINGHPUR): Their lives have been shattered and they do not know what the future holds for them. The battle between pro and anti-Posco activists has robbed them of their husbands.

While three men died recently in a bomb blast at the proposed steel plant site at Patana village within Dhinkia gram panchayat in Jagatsinghpur district, another was killed in 2008 after some persons hurled bombs at him. The three were Tarun Mandal, Manas Jena, Narahari Sahoo while Tarun’s elder brother Tapan alias Dula Mandal died earlier.

Tarun’s widow Pravati Mandal (26) of Gobindapur is left alone to take care of their two-year-old daughter. Pravati is now relying on the food items supplied by some villagers and supporters of Posco Pratirodha Sangram Samiti (PPSS).

“My daughter is suffering from fever for last five days but I am not getting medicines for her. She needs medicine and proper food,” Pravati said as her voice choked. “My daughter wakes up and cries at night on not seeing her father. My husband used to play with her in the evening after toiling in betel vine farms,” added Pravati.

Jharana Jena (28) married Manas, a betel vine farmer of Gobindapur, five years back. Like other women widowed by the ongoing violence, Jharana faces not only grave financial difficulties but also a battle to save their betel vines and lands from being acquired for the steel mill.

“After I lost my husband I have decided to take on the responsibility of our three-year-old son Sujala,” Jharana told TOI as tears welled up in her eyes. “Large number of anti-Posco villagers consider my husband as a hero. But, the hero tag holds little significance for me as I am facing an uphill task after the death of my husband,” added Jharana.

Similarly Pramila’s health has deteriorated after death of her husband Narahari, who happened to be Jharana’s father. “I have decided to fight against Posco to take revenge of my father’s death,”said Jharana.

Poverty and absence of a male member have also made life hell for Sabita Mandal (35), widow of Tapan alias Dula of Gobindapur village. Her life became a struggle after her husband, an anti-land acquisition leader, was killed June 20, 2008, in a bomb attack.

 

Bombay HC- PIL demands speedy trial for Naxal/ Maoist suspects


TNN | Mar 14, 2013,

NAGPUR: A public interest litigation (PIL) has been filed on Wednesday before the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court seeking judicial intervention and relief into the various aspects of Naxal undertrials. The petitioner, Soma Sen is a member of the Committee for Protection of Democratic Rights and associate professor of English Department at the Nagpur University. She is engaged in social work for more than two decades.

The PIL deals with the plight of the several farmers and other residents of Naxal-affected Gadchiroli who had been nabbed during various operations launched by the government forces in the district. Following their arrest, the petitioner has claimed that the trials are often delayed on numbers of pretexts including not providing escort guards to enable undertrials to remain present before the court.

The petitioner has also claimed that delayed trial of the victims has been aggravated by the violation of the fundamental rights of the prisoners and other laws pertaining to present them before the court. Sen has also prayed before the court to discourage videoconferencing facilities which do not allow the undertrials to have access to their lawyer

 

#India – Amendments in slum policy of Delhi, will benefit lakhs of slumdwellers #goodnews


 

After a long & continued struggle, Delhi Government brought amendments in modified slum policy after getting pressurized from the slum dwellers of Delhi.

 

Delhi Government has accepted most of the demands of the Sangathan & amended policy has been notified on 25th ‘February’2013. The benefits of amended slum policy of Delhi will reach to the hundreds of slum clusters & lakhs of slum dwellers of Delhi.

 

Since last one decade thousands of poor families living in slum clusters of Delhi facing inhuman evictions by the Government agencies. The ongoing eviction was supported by the modified slum policy which was notified on 19.02.2010 by Delhi Government.

 

This modified policy had a number of conditions under its eligibility criteria for rehabilitation of slum dwellers. Most of the slum dwellers were unable to fulfill those conditions despite of living in slums since last twenty years. This could have resulted in mass evictions of slum dwellers, loss of shelter & livelihood, school drop outs of children, extreme poverty and malnutrition among women & children. As per previous policy/guidelines, around 80-85% slum dwellers were not eligible for rehabilitation. The settlement of slums has direct link with the livelihood of lakhs of construction & domestic workers, transport workers, vendors & contract workers living in slums.

 

Delhi Shramik Sangathan mobilized thousands of slum dwellers in hundreds of slums in Delhi against the threat of mass eviction due to such anti labor & anti poor policy. The slum dwellers across Delhi sent thousands of letters to CM office as well as office of the Urban Development Minister of Delhi Government and also marched to Parliament to lodge their protest demanding amendments in slum policy of Delhi on 27th Novenber’2012.

 

Delhi Shramik Sangathan also submitted memorandum to Union Minister of Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation, UPA Chairperson, Smt. Sonia Gandhi, CM of Delhi, Smt. Sheila Dikshit and Minister of Urban Development, Government of Delhi, Sh Arvinder Singh Lovely demanding amendments in slum policy of Delhi.

 

These actions pressurized Delhi Government to change several conditions for eligibility for rehabilitation. The major amendments include:

 

  • The policy announced on 19.02.2010 had not only defined eligibility criteria for slum dwellers but it had also laid down eligibility conditions for slums; the slums which are situated near footpath, safety zone of railway, right of way, community areas were not eligible for rehabilitation; got removed from the policy.
  • The cut-off date for slum rehabilitation extended from 31st March’2007 to 4th June’2009.
  • As per the modified policy dated 19.02.2010; the slum dwellers had to present documents (Ration cards, Election identity card etc) of four periods that is of 1998, 2002,2007 and on the date of survey. The amendment has removed previous requirements of documents for eligibility condition; the name of the slum dwellers should be in electoral list on or before 04.06.2009 and in the year of survey.
  • The basis of income of slum dwellers as eligibility criteria for rehabilitation got removed from the policy.
  • With respect to ownership right; the flat to the eligible slum dweller will be allotted initially on lease hold basis for 15 years and converted to free hold thereafter.
  • Delhi government has shown intention in the court to withdraw their petition against the order of the honorable High Court of Delhi for rehabilitation of evicted families of New Sanjay Camp, Okhla through petition WP(C) 8904/2009.
  • This amendment will have impact on a number of cases pending in honorable High Court of Delhi for rehabilitation of slum dwellers.
  • The benefits of amended guidelines will also apply to those eight slums which were demolished as per previous modified policy dated 19.02.2010.
  • The procedures of Survey of slums have become more transparent than the earlier one. Now, the slum dwellers will be informed in advance about the survey and each family will be included in survey list whether it’s owner of the Jhuggi or tenant.

 

The amended policy is still silent on the issues of In-situ rehabilitation and actual cost of the flat under JNNURM.

 

In total, the amendments in the slum policy will bring relief to the lakhs of slum dwellers of Delhi who were under threat of inhuman eviction & fear of throwing away out of the city. The reality will be known after implementation of these policy guidelines.

RAMENDRA KUMAR

Secretary General

Delhi Shramik Sangathan

M-9868815915

 

 

#Mumbai- Protest against Corporatization of Municipal Schools @March 16


india calcutta bookstore

 

Corporatization of Municipal Schools – Disaster for Students, Parents and Teachers!

 

Cancel the decision of handing over education of 4 lakh municipal students

 

to Private organizations, NGOs and Companies!

 

Join the Protest on 16th March 2013!

 

In the guise of improving quality, the Mumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has taken a decision on 23 January 2013, to hand over all of it’s 1174 schools to private organizations and companies under a ‘Public Private Partnership’ scheme of ‘School Adoption’.

 

The Mumbai Municipal Act and the constitution mandate that the responsibility of Primary education lies with the Municipal Corporation. However the BMC is washing its hands away from the responsibility of primary education. This is only a beginning of privatization of education and soon all other Municipal Corporations, Municipalities, Zilha Parishads will abandon their responsibility for education.

 

The state and central governments provide funds to the Municipal Corporation for education, the BMC levies additional Education Cess to meet the expenses for education. However even the basic facilities are not provided in BMC schools; enough number of teachers and supporting staff are also not appointed; teachers are burdened with non-academic work. As a result of this the schools, which once nurtured good students and a promised a bright future for the Mumbai city, are dying now.

 

The builders and profiteering private institutions will capture the lands of BMC schools, similar to what happened with the Cotton mills in 1982.

 

Due to this policy of ‘school adoption’ the NGOs run by Indian and Foreign Multinationals will decide what our children should study, how they should study and who should teach them.

 

Institutions like IITs and Central schools have a good quality and they have been established by the Government itself. So if the BMC/government decides, they can improve the condition of BMC schools also. Instead of that they are degrading the schools further.

 

Today Mumbai Municipal Corporation provides education in 8 Indian Languages to 4 lakh students through 11000 teachers. NGOs provide substandard education of English by promising English medium education. This type of education is stunting the growth of language skills and independent thinking among students.  This is an attack on the future of our country, on the Dalits, Working class and Minorities.

 

If we do not get up today, tomorrow it may be too late. No NGO or private organization running for profit can provide free, compulsory and good quality education to all the children. That can be done only by a publicly funded, pro-people education system. So today the people of Maharashtra need to wake up and wage a struggle to strike down this decision. The only alternative to today’s unequal, discriminatory education system is a K.G. to P.G. publicly funded Common School System based on Neighbourhood schools. So do join us in the demonstrations on 16th of March 2013, at 12:30 pm at Azad Maidan!

 

Demands

 

  • Cancel the privatization of BMC schools
  • BMC must provide Free, Compulsory and Equal quality education to all children upto 12th standard.

 

Yours,

 

All participating organizations, parties in Mumbai

 

Aapli Mumbai, AISA, Indian Social Movement, India Against Corruption, AIRSO, AISF, Kokanastha Dalit Mahila Sanghatana, Ghar Bachao Ghar Banao Andolan, Janata Dal (Secular), Jaitapur Anuprakalp Virodhi Samitee, TDF, Parivartan Shikshan Sanstha, Phule Ambedkar Rashtriya Vidyarthi Sanghatana, Bhareep Bahujan Mahasangh, Communist Party of India, Maharashtra Sarva Shramik Sangh, Maagasavargeey Vidyarthi-Paalak Adhikar Sangharsha Samitee, Mumbai Municipal Kamgaar Sangh, Mumbai Municipal Kaamgar Karmacharee Purogamee Union, Mumbai Electric Employees Union, Muktiyaan Loksanskrutik Sanghatanaa, Yusuf Meherally Center, Yuva Biradaree, Replublican Panther, Rashtra Seva Dal, Vidyarthee Bharatee, Shikshan Vyaapaareekaran Virodhi Manch, Shikshan Bajareekaran Virodhi Manch, Samaan Shikshan Mulabhoot Adhikar Samitee(Mumbai), Samaan Shikshan Mulabhoot Adhikaar Samitee(Bhivandi), CPI(ML, Liberation), CPI(ML, Red Flag), Yuva Bharat, Samaajvadee Janparishad, Sant Rohidas Vichar Manch

 

Mumbai Shikshan Kampanikaran Virodhi Abhiyaan

 

With

 

All India Forum for Right to Education

 

Yusuf Meherali Center, D-15, Ganesh Prasad, Naushir Bharucha Marg, Grant Road(W), Mumbai 400007. Phone: 23870097 Email: yusufmeherally@gmail.com

 

 

 

#Chhattisgarh- Centre reverses stand on governor’s powers under Fifth Schedule


Author(s): Jitendra, downtoearth

Assistant solicitor general’s affidavit says the constitutional head of state has no discretionary powers over functioning of Tribes Advisory Council, headed by chief minister

The Centre seems to have reversed its stand on the powers of a governor over administering tribal areas in a state. Earlier, the attorney general of India had given an opinion to the home ministry, in response to a reference, that governors do have discretionary powers, but an assistant solicitor general has said exactly the opposite. Fauzia Mirza has said that the governor has no discretionary powers under the Fifth Schedule of the Constitution of India in a submission filed in the Chhattisgarh High Court on behalf of the Centre. The Fifth Schedule is rooted in Article 244 (1) and deals with administration and control of Scheduled Areas and Scheduled Tribes.

Mirza filed the submission in February end in connection with an ongoing case that has virtually challenged the Fifth Schedule and validity of the Tribes Advisory Council (TAC).  “The governor has granted powers to the chairpersons as per the rules of TAC,” the assistant solicitor general stated. “It cannot be said that these rules have been formulated to exercise the governor’s discretionary powers. While framing these rules, the power of governor has been exercised as the Constitutional head of the state acting with the aid and advice of the council of ministers and not in his discretion,” the document says.

The statement contradicts the opinion expressed by attorney general G E Vahanvati on April 21, 2010. Vahanvati, in his opinion on the nature of powers of the governor under the Fifth Schedule, had stated that the governor does have discretionary powers and had based his opinion on nine judgements of the Supreme Court and other references.

The division bench of Chief Justice Yatindra Singh and Justice Pritinkar Diwakar granted two weeks to the advocate general to file a reply. The next hearing is on March 12.

Fifth Schedule and its implementation in practice

The public interest petition filed last year in the Chhattisgarh High Court virtually questions the Fifth Schedule. The petition says it was impractical to implement the Fifth Schedule in its present form because of its flawed nature. While it was the root cause of the tribals’ plight, the functioning of TAC is also questionable, it said. According to the petitioner, if governors exercise their near extra-constitutional powers, they would be in direct confrontation with state executive heads.

According to the petition, paragraph 4(2) of the Fifth Schedule stipulates that TAC should hold deliberations in such a manner that the governor refers to them. “In reality, the chief minister, who is also the chairperson of TAC, decides the agenda and seizes sole control over functioning of the body without taking any reference from the governor,” the petition states.

“Governors never exercise their power entrusted in the Fifth Schedule,” says B K Manish, the petitioner who is a tribal rights activist. He cited two recent incidents—Nagari movement of Jharkhand and illegal detention of thousands of tribals in the name of Maoist movement in Chhattisgarh. In Nagari, adivasis approached the governor to annul a project to establish a centre of the Indian Institute of Management by forcible acquisition of fertile land. The governor ignored their demand. In Chhattisgarh, the governor turned a deaf ear to tribals’ appeals to annul the draconian Chhattisgarh Special Public Security Act.

 

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