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News digest: PM on 10% quota, HAL’s IAF woes, SP-BSP join hands, and more




10% for general category poor will boost new India’s confidence: PM


Prime Minister Narendra on Saturday said the move by his government to provide 10 per cent in education and jobs for the general category poor would enhance the confidence of ‘new India’. He clarified that the existing policy for the scheduled castes (SCs), scheduled tribes (STs) and other backward classes (OBCs) would remain as strong as it was, and accused opposition parties of trying to light a fire of discontent by spreading confusion over the issue.



President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday gave his assent to the Constitution amendment Act providing 10 per cent in government jobs and education, including privately run institutes of higher education, to economically backward sections in the general category. Both Houses of Parliament had cleared the legislation last week. Read more



Production of Mark 1A disrupted as IAF sits on HAL’s proposal


For 10 months now, Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd’s (HAL’s) proposal to manufacture 83 Mark 1A fighters, which the ministry of defence (MoD) green-lighted in December 2017, has been pending with the (IAF).


With no clearance forthcoming from the IAF’s “technical evaluation committee” (TEC), the project remains in limbo. HAL’s commercial bid remains unopened and an actual production order, at a price to be fixed by a “cost-negotiating committee”, is nowhere in sight. Read more



Lok Sabha elections 2019: UP to see triangular contest as BSP-SP join hands


The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and the (SP) on Saturday officially announced their tie-up in Uttar Pradesh, with the two former rivals agreeing to share 38 seats each in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, and kept the Congress out of the alliance. The two parties, however, will not field any candidates in Amethi and Rae Bareli, represented by Congress President Rahul Gandhi and United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, respectively.


At their much-awaited joint press conference at a five-star hotel in Lucknow, chief Mayawati and SP’s Akhilesh Yadav conveyed to their supporters that the two leaderships had buried the hatchet. Yadav indicated that he would like to see the leader as the next prime minister of India. Read more


owner Avenue Supermarts’ Q3 net profit growth slowest in 8 quarters


Avenue Supermarts, which operates the chain of stores in India, reported its slowest net profit growth in eight quarters as the company grappled with growing competition in grocery retail.


For the three months ending December 31, 2018, the company on Saturday reported a 2.1 per cent net profit growth only, touching Rs 257 crore — lower than the Bloomberg consensus estimates of Rs 295 crore. Read more





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