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NEET row: High-level committee formed under ex-ISRO chief for smooth conduct of exams

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NEET row: High-level committee formed under ex-ISRO chief for smooth conduct of exams

New Delhi, June 22 (IANS) The Centre on Saturday said that it has formed a high-level committee under the former ISRO Chief which will make the necessary recommendations regarding the smooth and fair conduct of exams through the National Testing Agency (NTA) for NEET and other examinations.

The committee will work under the Chairmanship of K. Radhakrishnan, former Chairman, of ISRO and Chairman of BoG, IIT Kanpur.

“The committee will submit the report in two months and will make necessary recommendations on reform in the mechanism of the examination process, improvement in data security protocols and structure and functioning of NTA,” an official of the Ministry of Education said.

The ministry said that the other members include Dr. Randeep Guleria, Former Director, AIIMS Delhi. Prof. B J Rao, Vice Chancellor, Central University of Hyderabad. Prof. Ramamurthy K, Professor Emeritus, Department of Civil Engineering, IIT Madras. Pankaj Bansal, Co-Founder, People Strong and Board Member- Karmayogi Bharat. Prof. Aditya Mittal, Dean Student Affairs, IIT Delhi. Govind Jaiswal, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Education.

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The Terms of Reference of the committee include reform in the mechanism of the examination process, to analyse the end-to-end examination process and suggest measures to improve the efficiency of the system and to forestall any possible breach. To conduct a thorough review of the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)/Protocols of the NTA, and suggest measures to strengthen these procedures/protocols along with monitoring mechanisms to ensure compliance at every level.

It will also evaluate the existing data security processes and protocols of NTA and recommend measures for its improvement. It will also examine existing security protocols related to paper-setting and other processes for different examinations and make recommendations to enhance the robustness of the system.

For Structure and Functioning of the National Testing Agency the committee will make recommendations on the organisational structure and functioning of the National Testing Agency (NTA) for implementation of recommendations given under points (i) and (ii) and clearly defining the roles and responsibilities of functionaries at every level.

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It will also assess the current Grievance Redressal Mechanism of the NTA, identify areas of improvement and make recommendations for enhancing its efficiency.

The Committee can co-opt any Subject Matter Expert to assist them.

–IANS

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Trinamool to move motions on NEET, 3 criminal laws during Assembly's Monsoon Session

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Trinamool to move motions on NEET, 3 criminal laws during Assembly's Monsoon Session

Trinamool to move motions on NEET, 3 criminal laws during Assembly's Monsoon Session

Kolkata, July 22 (IANS) The ruling Trinamool Congress will move two special motions on the floor of the West Bengal Assembly this week during the Monsoon Session.

The first motion will be for scrapping of the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) and the second will be on the three new criminal laws introduced in India, confirmed the Assembly Speaker.

The decision to move these two special motions was taken at the Business Advisory Committee of the state Assembly on Monday, when the Monsoon Session resumed.

However, as per convention, on the first day the session was adjourned after obituary mention.

The Speaker said that the motion demanding scrapping of NEET and restoration of the previous system of individual state governments conducting such examinations, will be moved on the floor of the House on Tuesday and there will be debates on the matter on Wednesday.

Similarly, another motion on the three criminal laws in the country will be moved by the Treasury Bench on Friday and debates on the matter will be conducted on next Monday.

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Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has already sent a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on June 24 raising the same demand on scrapping of NEET examination.

She had also written to the Prime Minister objecting to the implementation of the three new criminal laws without proper groundwork and preparation.

–IANS

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Divested of key portfolio, BJP Minister in MP threatens to quit

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Divested of key portfolio, BJP Minister in MP threatens to quit

Divested of key portfolio, BJP Minister in MP threatens to quit

Bhopal, July 21(IANS) Upset after being divested of the key Forest and Environment portfolio, first-time Cabinet minister in Madhya Pradesh, Nagar Singh Chouhan, on Monday threatened to quit from the Council of Ministers in the next two days.

Chouhan, a four-time tribal MLA who is now left with the Scheduled Caste Welfare portfolio, said he would quit the ministerial post and serve the people of his community, adding that his wife Anita Nagar Singh Chouhan, who is a first-time Lok Sabha member, might also quit as an MP.

On Sunday, Nagar Singh Chouhan was divested of the Forest and Environment portfolio which was allotted to Ramnivas Rawat, a six-time Congress MLA who switched sides to the BJP on April 30.

“I have been associated with the BJP for over 25 years. Yet I wasn’t consulted before the decision to divest me of the Forest and Environment portfolio was taken. I have already discussed the issue with (state BJP chief) V.D. Sharma. I will announce my decision in the next two days,” Chouhan told mediapersons on Monday.

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The BJP leader also said what made him more upset was the fact that the ministry was allotted to someone who joined the party from the Congress only a few months back.

When asked if his ‘pressure tactic’ had anything to do with the possibility of him being dropped as a minister in a future Cabinet reshuffle, Chouhan said he never asked for any post in 25 years of his political career.

“I never asked for a ticket for my wife before the Lok Sabha polls. It was the party that chose my wife as its candidate, and we didn’t disappoint as she won by more than 2 lakh votes, the highest winning margin ever from the seat (Ratlam).

“Now if the party feels that two members from the same family cannot be bestowed with key responsibility, I’ll quit as a minister and remain just an MLA, while my wife will step down as an MP,” said Chouhan, considered a loyalist of former CM and current Union Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.

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Notably, this is the first resentment shown by any BJP leader after Chief Minister Mohan Yadav assumed office in December last year.

–IANS

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JD(S) MLC Suraj Revanna gets conditional bail in unnatural sex case

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JD(S) MLC Suraj Revanna gets conditional bail in unnatural sex case

JD(S) MLC Suraj Revanna gets conditional bail in unnatural sex case

Bengaluru, July 22 (IANS) A special court on Monday granted conditional bail to JD(S) MLC Suraj Revanna, the grandson of former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda, in connection with an unnatural sex case.

The Special Court for MPs/MLAs has instructed Suraj Revanna to appear before the investigating officer in the case whenever required and to sign in with the police authorities on every second Sunday.

He has also been ordered not to contact the complainants by any means, directly or indirectly. Two complaints have been lodged against Suraj Revanna by JD(S) workers, accusing him of forceful unnatural sex.

The case is being investigated by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID).

Suraj Revanna’s brother, Prajwal Revanna, is jailed in connection with an alleged sex video scandal. Their father, JD(S) MLA H.D. Revanna, was arrested in a kidnapping case linked to the sex video scandal but is out on conditional bail. H.D. Revanna’s wife, Bhavani Revanna, has also secured bail in the kidnapping case.

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Suraj Revanna was arrested on June 23. Earlier, the court had rejected his bail petition.

–IANS

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Regional industry conclave opened new doors for industrial revolution in MP: CM

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Regional industry conclave opened new doors for industrial revolution in MP: CM

Regional industry conclave opened new doors for industrial revolution in MP: CM

Bhopal, July 22 (IANS) Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Mohan Yadav on Monday said that the initiative to organise the ‘Regional Industry Conclave’ in different parts of the state has opened new doors of the industrial revolution in the state.

“During the Regional Industry Conclave in Jabalpur on July 20, the investors gave investment proposals worth about Rs 22,000 crore for setting up large units as well as MSME units. This investment will generate a large number of jobs,” the Chief Minister said.

He said that more proposals are likely to come in the coming months as the communication with leading industrialists and business houses is still in process.

He said that the state government has taken concrete initiatives for the development of industries at the regional level.

“The use of a new mantra has been started effectively. This was the second Regional Industries Conclave. The first was held in Ujjain in March this year and the government had then received the investment proposal of more than Rs 15,000 crore,” he said.

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He said that there is a plan to organise a regional industry conclave in other big cities of the state in the coming months.

“These include Sagar, Rewa, and Gwalior. This will help in encouraging local entrepreneurs to invest in the Bundelkhand, Vindhya, and Chambal regions,” he said.

–IANS

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Bengal Guv warns two Trinamool MLAs of fiscal penalty on attending Assembly session

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Bengal Guv warns two Trinamool MLAs of fiscal penalty on attending Assembly session

Bengal Guv warns two Trinamool MLAs of fiscal penalty on attending Assembly session

Kolkata, July 22 (IANS) The office of West Bengal Governor, CV Ananda Bose, on Monday, shot off letters to the two new Trinamool Congress legislators Sayantika Banerjee and Reyat Houssen Sarkar cautioning them of financial penalties if they take part in the proceedings of the House.

After taking oath administered by Speaker Biman Bandopadhyay, the two MLAs reached the Assembly premises to participate in the Monsoon Session that started from Monday.

However, they received emails from the office of the Governor asking them to clarify who had administered their oath.

The notice reminded the two MLAS that as the oath was administered by the Speaker instead of the Deputy Speaker of the House who had been nominated by Governor Bose to do so, the oath is unconstitutional.

Article 193 of the Indian Constitution gives the power to the Governor to impose a financial penalty on the two MLAs if they participate in the proceedings or even occupy the chair allotted on the floor of the House, without the approval of the constitutional head of the state.

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“If a person sits or votes as a member of the Legislative Assembly or the Legislative Council of a State before he has complied with the requirements of Article 188, or when he knows that he is not qualified or that he is disqualified for membership thereof, or that he is prohibited from so doing by the provisions of any law made by Parliament or the Legislature of the State, he shall be liable in respect of each day on which he so sits or votes to a penalty of five hundred rupees to be recovered as a debt due to the State,” reads Article 193.

–IANS

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