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1400 HRS

26th March, 2017


  • The Prime Minister says New India is a clarion call of 125 crore countrymen; In the 30th edition of Mann Ki Baat programme on All India Radio, Mr Modi urges people to adopt digital transactions to fight black money; Also calls upon citizen to avoid wastage of food.
  • Government asks telecom operators to re-verify all mobile subscribers through Aadhar based e-KYCs.
  • Uttar Pradesh government terminates services of 58 officers given extension by the previous government.
  • Railways to set up Wi-Fi hotspot kiosks at 500 stations in remote area to help people access online services.
  • India were 145 for 2 against Australia in the first innings in the fourth and final Test match at Dharamshala a short while ago.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called upon citizens to be part of the transformation of the country so that the dream of a New India can be fulfilled. Sharing his thoughts in the 30th edition of Mann Ki Baat on All India Radio today, Mr Modi said, New India is the clarion call of 125 crore countrymen. He said, the desire of the countrymen for change will lay the foundation for a new India. He said, the New India is neither a government programme, nor is it the manifesto of a political party, nor a project. He said, it is the essence of the emotions of Indians wanting to come together and create a magnificent India.

Mr Modi said, there are lakhs of people, who besides their own personal responsibilities are working selflessly for the exploited, victimised, deprived and  for the poor and oppressed. He said, the belief that service to humanity is service to God, is innate to Indians. The Prime Minister said, if every citizen resolves that he will discharge his duties honestly, it will contribute to the realisation of the dream of a New India. Mr Modi urged people to be part of the journey from Swaraj to Suraaj by making their lives disciplined, and filled with resolve.

Remembering Mahatma Gandhi's Champaran Satyagrah which is completing 100 years next month, Mr Modi said, in India’s struggle for freedom, Gandhian thought and Gandhian practice manifested for the first time in Champaran.

Expressing happiness over the large number of people participating in  digital payments, the  Prime minister said the poorest of the poor are  also making an attempt to learn how to do business without cash. He said there has been a surge in various modes of digital payments after a demonetisation and that over one and half people have downloaded the BHIM app.

Urging people to become a brave soldier in the fight against black money and corruption, the Prime Minister asked people to undertake 2500 crore digital transactions during this year .

Welcoming the increased participation of working class women, Mr Modi said the central government has taken a very important decision  of giving maternity leave of 26 weeks, instead of the earlier 12 weeks for their pregnancy and delivery.

Mr Modi said 7th April is World Health Day and this year the focus is on Depression. Saying there is need to create a psychologically conducive environment for person suffering from depression, Mr Modi said yoga is a good means for mental wellbeing.

Extending greetings to the people of Bangladesh on their Independence Day, the Prime Minister gave the assurance that India is a strong partner, a good friend of Bangladesh and that both nations will continue to work together to contribute towards peace, security and development of the entire region.

Paying tribute to Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev and Rajguru, the Prime Minister said, no words can do justice to their sacrifice and that they continue to inspire people. In his address, Mr Modi also touched upon issues of cleanliness and wastage of food. Mr Modi also greeted people for the new year which will be celebrated in different parts of the country on Tuesday. 


All existing subscribers of mobile services will have to go for Aadhaar-based re-verification soon. A notification issued by the telecom department said, all telecom operators shall re-verify all existing mobile subscribers (pre-paid and postpaid) through the Aadhaar-based eKYC process. The government instructed telecom operators to initiate the process regarding this. The Cellular operators' body said its members may meet next week to discuss the modalities of rolling out the verification process for the existing one billion-plus mobile phone users. The operator can re-verify more than one mobile connection in one service area through a single eKYC but not bulk connections. Verification of a subscriber would not be required in case of conversions - that is pre-paid to postpaid connections or vice versa.


Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Aditya Nath Yogi has terminated the services of 58 officers with immediate effect. They had been given extension after retirement by the previous Samajwadi Party government.

Quoting official sources, Our Lucknow correspondent reports that 76 officers were given extension by the previous government. They include several IAS and PCS officers from the state. 

"Previous Akhilesh Yadav Government had given extension to several retired IAS and PCS officers and officers working in secretariat. Even Allahabad High Court had observed against such extensions to retired officers. Five officers were given extension in Chief Minister office and Ramesh Chandra Yadav was posted as OSD in CM's office. The Allahabad High Court had issued orders for removal of Mr. SP Singh but he was allowed to look after responsibilities of post of Secretary of Urban Development and Minority welfare departments due to his closeness with senior Samajwadi Party leader Mohd Azam Khan. The Government has allowed 18 officers who are also on extension but working as expert in different departments. Sunil Shukla, AIR News Lucknow."


The Railways will set up Wi-Fi hotspot kiosks at about 500 stations in remote area to help people access an array of online services, including various government schemes. Named Railwire Saathi, the Wi-Fi kiosks will function like Public Call Office or PCO for Digital India and will enable people to use services like e-commerce, online banking and offer them access to e-ticketing for train and bus services among others. A report:

The Railwire Saathi is a Wi-Fi entrepreneurship model where unemployed youths, preferably women, can be trained to set up a Wi-Fi hot-spot and provide a platform to on-line services which will make the business sustainable. RailTel, the telecom arm of railways, would execute the scheme across the country. A senior Railway Ministry official said, the Railwire Saathi aims to provide connectivity to the unconnected and at the same time offer jobs opportunities in rural areas. Unemployed youth who wants to be RailWire Saathi would have to contact RailTel for necessary training. The scheme is expected to be operational by May. Railwire Saathi will also help in disseminating information about various government schemes. VASUNDHRA, AIR NEWS, DELHI."


Ninety four of the 500 cities which are included in the Smart City Mission and Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation, AMRUT have obtained ratings which are necessary for issuing Municipal Bonds for mobilization of resources. The development comes as the exercise of the Credit ratings of cities and towns is gaining momentum. During review of progress of the Credit Rating exercise taken by Urban Development Minister M.Venkaiah Naidu yesterday, it was revealed that 55 of these cities have received Investment Grade ratings. The 94 cities that have so far been assigned Credit Ratings are spread across 14 States.

The Ministry of Urban Development is promoting Credit Ratings of cities as one of the five Transformational Reforms under which about 500 cities and towns that account for about 65 per cent of total urban population were to be given Credit Ratings during this year.


The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) plans to audit the impact of demonetisation and the affect it has had on government tax revenues. CAG Shashi Kant Sharma said, he may look into expenditure on printing of notes, the RBI dividend payout and banking transaction data.

Mr Sharma said, the CAG is also gearing up to audit tax revenues under the new Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime and has started capacity building and reorienting its audit methodology and procedures. The auditor has also conveyed to the government its stand on the recent move of the GST Council to delete section 65 of the preliminary draft that authorised the CAG to audit GST.


Sri Lankan Navy today arrested 12 Indian fishermen for allegedly entering into Sri Lankan waters. A navy statement the said that the fishermen were taken into custody along with two boats from northwest of Delft island. They will be handed over to the fisheries department in Jaffna for further action. Our correspondent has more on this.

"The total number of Indian fishermen in Sri Lankan custody has gone up to 38 and these arrests have come up during last 10 days. These arrests came soon after a batch of 85 fishermen were released early this month in wake of killing of one fisherman in alleged firing by Sri Lankan navy. The issue of fishermen has been a bone of contention between the two neighbours and serious efforts are on to resolve the issue. Both countries have a set up a Joint Working Group to discuss the matter and couple of meeting s have been held so far. The next meeting headed by Union agriculture secretary is scheduled to be held in Colombo on 6th of next month. SANTOSH KUMAR/air news, COLOMBO."


India were 153 for 2 at tea against Australia in their first innings in the fourth and final cricket Test at Dharamshala. The hosts resumed batting with all wickets in hand this morning. 

Debutant Indian bowler Kuldeep Yadav's 4 wicket haul helped India dismiss the visitors for 300 yesterday. Indian skipper Virat Kohli is not playing because of a shoulder injury. For Australia, Smith scored  111, followed by Warner at 56, the second highest scorer for the team.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been named among the probable contenders for Time magazine's annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world. Time will next month announce the list, comprising a number of leading artists, politicians, lawmakers, scientists and leaders of tech and business.


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