The Morning Wrap is Huffpost India's selection of interesting news and opinion from the day's newspapers.
Goa chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar on Wednesday blamed people's physical disabilities on God's negligence."There are some brothers and sisters in the society, who are born with certain disabilities. God forgets to give them certain things. That is negligence on the part of God and for that the child has to suffer for entire life," Parsekar said. At least 11 persons have died of swine flu at various hospitals in Hyderabad in the last 30 days, while over 150 have tested positive for the H1N1 virus. Kiran Bedi, the BJP's chief ministerial nominee for Delhi, on Wednesday, described the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) as "very nationalistic" and a cohesive body that has kept India united and organised. "They( RSS) are very nationalistic. I would think here is an organisation, which kept India together, which has kept India neat," Ms. Bedi said. The Central Bureau of Investigation on Wednesday night arrested three persons in Tamil Nadu, including a close aide of former Union Telecom Minister Dayanidhi Maran. The case pertains to allegations that Maran set up a virtual telephone exchange at his house to enable high-speed data transfer to benefit the Sun TV group owned by his brother Kalanidhi Maran. Days after President Pranab Mukherjee expressed his displeasure on the glut of ordinances being used by the government to pass legislation, the NDA plans on withdrawing the last pending ordinance-- to amend the Arbitration and Conciliation Act--that must be sent to Mukherjee for his assent. Officials of India and United States met in London on Wednesday, ahead of President Obama's New Delhi visit, to break the deadlock on the nuclear liability issue that has prevented US nuclear-equipment suppliers and Indian nuclear-plant operators from trade inspite of a nuclear deal having been signed nine years ago. Resolving a long-standing controversy, the Union Cabinet on Wednesday allowed the telecommunications ministry to swap some of its spectrum with that held by the defence ministry. However it would take almost a year for the deal to fructify and therefore, wouldn't allow the telecom ministry to auction out the spectrum to industry to offer 3G services any time soon. The Hindustan Times reports that the Andhra Pradesh government might default on the salaries of 5.7 lakh employees and three lakh pensioners as the state is in a financial crisis, in the wake of the separation of Telangana. India's Muslim population has grown slower than in the previous decade according to early reports, from the census on the population of religious groups. The data accessed by the Times of India showed that the most rapid rise in the share of Muslims in the total population was witnessed in Assam.
Off The Front Page
Soon, pets travelling to the United States will land in the 'Ark,' an airport terminal exclusively made for their convenience. The 178,000-square-foot facility will open at the John F. Kennedy Airport in New York in 2016 and transport 70,000 animals a year. In a step to accelerate free and speedy trial, the Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered courts not to grant any adjournment between deposition of witness and his cross-examination by the counsel for accused, said to be the most crucial phase of a trial. India's over-worked legal system is globally infamous for its tardy disposal of cases. In a stark deviation from a decades-old market strategy, Microsoft has announced that it will offer the latest version of the Windows operating system for free, for a year. Though selling the OS is one of its key avenues of profit, the new strategy is aimed at establishing Windows on as many devices as possible, and then trying to make up for lost revenue by selling services such as Office over the internet, or cloud. A historical analysis of voting patterns in Delhi over the past few decades suggests a strong class-based strategy and the forthcoming elections too are likely to reflect this, says a report in the Economic Times. More Congress party leaders seem to be going public with criticism of the party's Lok Sabha debacle. Now senior Congress leader Janardan Dwivedi said on Wednesday that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP's victory in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections was a victory of "Indianness," and that Modi's ascension to power marked the beginning of a "new period". The India operations of Sony's global entertainment division may have been involved in bidding fraud and dealing in kickbacks, according to internal e-mails released by hackers.
The gender gap in managerial pay in India is six per cent, making it one of the best performers among 49 countries, according to a new study issued by the International Labour Organization (ILO).Though Prime Minister Narendra Modi is frequently vocal about bringing over 10 crore people into the banking system, most of them are unused. According to data released by the ministry, only 28 per cent of the accounts opened under the scheme are active, with about Rs 9,000 crore deposited in these.
Commenting on the state of India's Censor Board, Shubhra Gupta, at the Indian Express says,"What emerges from the relentless shrillness is that as a society, we are the touchiest, most thin-skinned, defensive and therefore offensive when it comes to the "R" word." Pratap Bhanu Mehta in the Indian Express argues that a modest, well-designed inheritance tax will not deter investors, and on the contrary, will attract them as it will entail other associated reforms in the economy.