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Social activists and political leaders demand for transparency in voting process

-Press Release by Delhi Forum New Delhi, 19th February, 2018: “Today it is no more the question of going back to ballot paper in elections, but it’s a must that 2019 elections be conducted through the ballot papers. EVM machines are destroying the trust between the voter and the democratic system. Democracy is too precious to be left to machines. To ensure the democratic nature of the country, the 2019 election should be done through the ballot system”, said Manish Tiwari, Spokesperson, Indian National Congress. He was speaking at a meeting along with Ali Anwar - MP, Rajya Sabha, Amarjeet Kaur- CPI, DP Tripathi- NCP, Dr Sunilam, Ex MLA, National Convener, NAPM, Gauhar Raza- scientist, Kavita Krishnan- CPI(ML), Kunwar Danish Ali- JDS, Manish Tiwari- Congress, Naval Kishore Yadav- RJD, Nikhil Dey- MKSS, Nilotpal Basu- CPM, Ravi Verma- SP, S. Srinath- expert, Saurabh Bhardwaj-AAP, Uvesh Mallik- Advocate and Seema Mustafa, senior journalist....

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Data Set for Modi's '7 Million Jobs' Claim Badly Maintained, '30-40% Unclean' -Somesh Jha

-TheWire.in/ Business Standard The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation data analysed by researchers showed that in some cases, members have received contributions even before their joining date. New Delhi: A presentation made by State Bank of India chief economist Soumya Kanti Ghosh and Indian Institute of Management-Bangalore professor Pulak Ghosh to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) in January captured how subscriber data is shoddily maintained by the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) – something that the recently released study on creation of seven million jobs in 2017-18 did not include. Out of around 80 million accounts that the two researchers analysed, there were ten million records with only names and no other details about the subscribers, including their date of joining, date of birth and father’s name, among others, in the EPFO’s records. Several records maintained by the EPFO had names such as A, a, xxx, 9, z, with provident fund contribution against them. Soumya...

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Lessons from Thailand: For universal health coverage, invest in public systems and human resources -T Sundararaman

-Scroll.in Thailand spends as much of its GDP on health as India, yet it offers the entire range of healthcare services to all citizens for free. Finance Minister Arun Jailtley’s Budget speech this year and the subsequent media coverage projected insurance coverage as being almost synonymous with universal health coverage. Nothing could be further from the truth. Health insurance is only a small part of ensuring universal health coverage. Besides, to get health insurance right, it has be designed differently from publicly-funded health insurance programmes of India. A study of health insurance in Thailand helps understand why. Thailand is the developing world’s beacon when it comes to universal health coverage, which is simply defined as “all people having access to quality healthcare to meet their healthcare needs without financial hardship”. Not only does Thailand have better health outcomes, it also offers almost complete financial protection to its citizens, and is responsive to...

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Job Creation in Organised Sector Dipped by 65% in April-June 2017 -Somesh Jha

-TheWire.in New Delhi: The pace of job creation in the organised sector fell sharply during April-June 2017 to a three-quarter low due to significant job losses in manufacturing, latest official estimates show. The number of new jobs created declined by around 65% to 64,000 in April-June 2017 from 185,000 in January-March 2017, according to the Labour Bureau’s quarterly report on employment. Job creation during April-June was even lower than the 77,000 reported in the same three months a year ago. The Labour Bureau conducts an establishment-based job survey in eight sectors – manufacturing, construction, trade, transport, education, health, accommodation and restaurants and information technology. These constitute 81% of the total number of factories in the country employing at least ten workers. Finance minister Arun Jaitley, quoting an independent study, had said in the Budget speech earlier this month that various measures taken by the government had led to seven million jobs being created in...

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Rajasthan withdraws Bill to gag media and shield judges, government servants -Mohammad Hamza Khan

-The Indian Express In a reply to the Budget debate in the Assembly, Vasundhara Raje said, "We sent the Bill to the Select Committee, we let the ordinance lapse and today it is not law, what should we withdraw? But we are still withdrawing it.” Jaipur: Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje Monday announced the withdrawal of a controversial Bill that sought to gag the media and shield judges and government servants from being investigated. The Bill was earlier referred to a Select Committee in the Assembly after protests by the Opposition, journalists and lawyers. In a reply to the Budget debate in the Assembly, Raje said: “Jis Bill ko humne Select Committee ko refer kiya, jis Ordinance ko lapse hone diya, aaj jo woh kanoon he nahi, toh hum kya waapas len. Phir bhi hum ise wapas le rahe hain (We sent the Bill to the Select Committee, we let the ordinance lapse...

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