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0815 HRS




  • Counting of votes for Presidential election to take place today.
  • Supreme Court says Right to Privacy cannot be an absolute right and State may have some power to put reasonable restriction on it.
  • Union Cabinet approves 15 per cent hike in salaries for public sector company employees.
  • Centre asks State governments to set up their own insurance companies for better implementation of crop insurance scheme.
  • US criticises Pakistan for not taking any significant  action against terror outfits Lashkar e-Tayyiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad, Afghan Taliban and Haqqani Network.
  • And in ICC Women's World Cup cricket, India to take on six-time champions Australia in the second semi-final in Derby today.


The counting of votes for the Presidential election will be held today. It will begin at 11 AM. First, the ballot box of Parliament House will be opened, and then, the ballot papers received from states will be counted in alphabetical order. Our correspondent reports that NDA candidate Ramnath Kovind and Opposition candidate Meira Kumar are in the fray for the top constitutional post.

"The Election was held on 17th of this month and around 99 per cent voting was recorded. Out of 771 Member of Parliament of the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha 768 cast their votes while of 4100 state legislators, 4075 excercised their franchise. The votes will be counted on four separate tables and there would be eight rounds of counting. The numbers are in favour of the ruling coalition's nominee Ram Nath Kovind, a former Bihar governor, over the opposition's candidate Meira Kumar. The candidate who secures at least one vote more than 50 per cent of the total votes will enter into the Rashtrapati Bhavan. With Dipendra Kumar/THIS IS SAIRA MUJTABA /AIR News /Delhi."


The Supreme Court has said that the Right to Privacy cannot be an absolute right and the State may have some power to put reasonable restriction. The nine-judge Constitution bench was yesterday examining the issue whether Right to Privacy can be declared as a Fundamental Right under the Constitution.

The bench headed by Chief Justice JS Khehar also asked the Centre and others to assist it about the contours and ambit of test on which the width and scope of the Right to Privacy will be tested and also of its infringement, if any, by the State.

During the day-long hearing, the bench said, Right to Privacy is an amorphous right and not absolute. It is only a small sub-sect of liberty.

The bench said we live in an age of big data and the state is entitled to regulate the data whether it is for the purpose of regulating crime, taxation or other activities.

The argument will continue today and the Attorney General is likely to put the government's view across.


Union Cabinet has cleared a 15 per cent hike in salaries for public sector company employees. The Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved implementation of the recommendations of the 3rd Pay Commission for central public sector enterprises' employees. The new wages are effective from first of January this year.

In another decision, the Cabinet has given permission to the Inland Waterways Authority of India to raise 660 crore rupees through bonds in the current fiscal for development and maintenance of national waterways.

The Cabinet has also approved the signing of Memorandum of Cooperation in respect of tax matters between India and BRICS countries - Brazil, Russia, China and South Africa. The Memorandum aims at promoting cooperation amongst the BRICS Revenue administrations in international forum on common areas of interest in tax matters and in the area of capacity building and knowledge sharing.


Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is a win-win deal for all as it will expand the tax net, end inspector raj and bring down the prices of goods. Speaking at the BJP Parliamentary Party meeting, Mr Jaitley said, the prices of goods have come down between four to eight per cent since roll-out of the GST from the first of this month. He said, the GST is in the interest of people and States as the latter will get 80 per cent of the revenue leading to more development. Mr Jaitley said, there is no longer tax on tax and the transport of goods across the country is going unhindered now.


The Centre has asked the state governments to set up their own insurance companies for better implementation of the crop insurance scheme and warned the existing insurers of strict action in case of irregularities. Replying to a debate on agrarian crisis in the Lok Sabha, Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh said there are implementation issues in the government's flagship Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojna and the states have been asked to establish their own insurance companies.

Responding to concerns expressed by the members, the minister said the government will take action against the insurance companies, if any irregularities are found in premium collection and claim settlement.


All India Radio has earned a revenue of around 10 crore rupees through the Prime Minister’s Mann Ki Baat Programme in the last two years. In a written reply in the Lok Sabha, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting, Col Rajyavardhan Rathore  yesterday said, the revenue from this programme increased  substantially during the year 2016-17. He said, the programme is being broadcast in 18 languages and 33 dialects by all AIR stations. The Minister said, the monthly programme, Mann Ki Baat, is disseminated on transmitters for domestic audience and through internet and shortwave transmitters for global listeners.


United States has criticised Pakistan for not taking any significant  action against the Lashkar e-Tayyiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), other than implementing an ongoing ban against media coverage of their activities. In its Country Report on Terrorism for the year 2016, the US State Department said, LeT and JeM continued to hold rallies, raise money, recruit, and train in Pakistan. The report said, Pakistan also did not take substantial action against the Afghan Taliban and Haqqani Network to limit their ability to threaten US interests in Afghanistan. These groups are located in Pakistan but focused on conducting terror attacks outside the country.

The report also pointed out that the progress remained slow on regulating Madrassas, blocking extremist messaging, empowering the National Counter Terrorism Authority, cutting off terrorist financing, and strengthening the judicial system in Pakistan.

Sources in the Ministry of External Affairs said, the US State Department's Reports release yesterday vindicate India's long-standing position on the menace of cross-border terrorism in South Asia.


Himachal Pradesh government has removed Inspector General of Police Southern Range Zahur Haider Zaidi and SP Shimla DW Negi after violence in Kotkhai town in Shimla district yesterday. The transfer orders of these police officials were issued late last night. The mob agitated over death of a gang rape accused in the police custody torched the Kotkhai police station. The two accused were kept together in the lock up where one of the accused reportedly killed another on Tuesday night.

The opposition BJP and several other social organizations have called for a Shimla Bandh today to protest against the incident. The Opposition Leader Prem Kumar Dhumal has appealed people not to indulge in any kind of violence and protest peacefully.

The Himachal Pradesh High Court has directed the CBI to begin probe into the gang rape.

Meanwhile, BJP MP Anurag Thakur yesterday raised this issue in the Lok Sabha and expressed concern over the incident.

We have a report from our correspondent.

"Perturbed over this heinous incident the Governor Acharya Devvrat has written a letter to Chief Secretary to submit detailed report till tomorrow. He also summoned Director General of Police yesterday and discussed about the situation. The people of the area are on roads since the dead body of student recovered on 6th July. People are demanding immediate stern action against the real culprits who are said to be the influential persons from the same area and police is allegedly shielding them.  Shishu Sharma Shantal, AIR News, Shimla."


Veteran BJP leader LK Advani received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his contributions as a Lok Sabha member.  JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav got the Lifetime Achievement Award as a Rajya Sabha MP. The award was given by Vice President Hamid Ansari at a function organised by the Lokmat Media Group. Addressing the function in New Delhi, Mr Ansari said personal conduct and credibility of the parliamentary representative provides assurance to the public in the efficacy of the institutions of Parliamentary democracy.

Former Prime Ministers Manmohan Singh and HD Deve Gowda, Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari, former Union Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu and other dignitaries were present on the occasion.


The glory of the first armed farmer-warriors' uprising in Odisha against the East India Company in 1817 known as Paika Rebellion will be celebrated today. Ministry of Culture has organised a function in New Delhi to pay tribute to the martyrs on the ocassion of Bicentenary Celebration of the heroic Palika rebellion of Odisha, which originated under the leadership of Bakshi Jagabandhu.

President Pranab Mukherjee will inaugurate the function. On the occasion, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, Union Ministers Jual Oram, Dharmendra Pradhan, and Dr Mahesh Sharma will be present.

In April this year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had felicitated descendants of the Paika warriors in Bhubaneswar.


India Meteorological Department has warned of heavy rain in Goa, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Karnataka today. The Met Department has also forecast heavy rain in Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, East Rajasthan, West Bengal and Sikkim, Odisha, parts of North East, Gujarat, Telangana and Kerala till Sunday.


In Jammu and Kashmir, at least two persons were killed and some others are missing after a cloud burst in Thathri area of Doda district today. Police sources told AIR that five people trapped under the debris and mud have been rescued. Rescue operation is being carried out. Two dead bodies have been recovered. After the cloudburst that occured around 2 AM, some houses in Thathri town were damaged in the flashfloods.


In the ICC Women's World Cup cricket, India will take on six-time champions Australia in the second semi-final in Derby today. The match will start 3 PM Indian Time.

A win today will ensure India's entry into the summit clash at the Lord's only for the second time in the history of the tournament. India played the final of the World Cup only once in 2005 edition in South Africa, where they lost to Australia. 



  • The Supreme Court observing that right to privacy is not absolute makes for front page news in most of the dailies this morning. "Right to privacy is not absolute, observes Supreme Court" is the lead in DNA adding "A 9 judge bench is hearing arguments on whether it is a fundamental right". The Pioneer quotes the Supreme Court as saying "Digital age dilutes privacy. In data sharing era, it is tough to say privacy fundamental right".
  • The government informed Parliament that around 210 websites of central and state government were found displaying personal details and Aadhaar numbers of beneficiaries, in gross violation of norms reports Hindustan Times.
  • The Indian Express quoting the US administration writes "Pakistan terror safe haven, Lashkar and Jaish move freely. Islamabad hasn't acted against terror groups."
  • "Decks cleared for the creation of an 'oil gaint' " is the banner headline in the Business Line. The paper writes that the Cabinet approved ONGC-HPCL deal, Ministerial panel to oversee process.
  • Referring to the INX Media which was then being run by Peter and Indrani Mukerjea Hindustan Times writes "CBI summons Chindambaram's son again in INX Media case.
  • There is no proposal by the government to cut down maternity benefits in the draft on Labour Code on Social Security reports DNA.
  • "Centre set to study feasibility of bidding for 2032 Olympics" informs The Times of India.
  • "Special Investigation Team (SIT) closes 51 of 60 re-opened cases in 1984 sikh riots" notes Hindustan Times.
  • "The Government is pro-actively considering the matter of having two separate times zones in the country observes The Financial Express.
  • And finally, India'a tiger population is set to record a rise a nearly 1,700 big cats have been captured on camera traps across 46 of the country's 50 reserves in the latest annual estimation. The overall numbers is likely to cross the current tiger population figure 2,226 reports DNA.


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