While the government and the NSCN (IM) have only reached a “framework agreement”, laying down the contours within which a final deal will be thrashed out between the two sides in the coming months, in a special feature released for Independence Day by his ministry, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said the two sides “successfully concluded the dialogue on Naga political issue, which has existed for six decades”, and signed an agreement on August 3 in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. ‘’This agreement will restore peace and pave the way for prosperity in the North-east,” he stated.
The proposal of establishing a Ganga university has not moved much beyond conceptual stage since it was announced last year. But the government is certainly exploring sites other than Varanasi, where it wanted to locate it. One potential site is Khadakvasla near Pune, which already has a leading institute on water studies called the Central Water and Power Research Station. There is talk that this institute can be converted into a university or can start a separate centre on Ganga.
The NDA has been in power for over a year but the future course for the previous UPA government’s PM’s Rural Development Fellows scheme remains unclear. Applications are yet to be invited for a fresh batch even as the first batch inducted under the programme was scheduled to complete its tenure in two lots — in June and September this year. In view of the delay in inducting a fresh batch and following a demand by some states, Rural Development Minister Birender Singh has extended the term of the first batch by six months.
Even as A+ cities like Delhi and Mumbai witnessed aggressive bidding during the e-auction of FM radio channels, what surprised many is that a Category A city like Hyderabad, which has four FM stations on offer at a reserve price of Rs 18 crore each, has virtually seen no takers even after 60 rounds of bidding. I&B Ministry officials are speculating that bidders’ reluctance could be stemming from the city’s status of a joint capital of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The possibility of having to deal with two state governments could be keeping bidders away.