Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that next five years are crucial for the country and it is significant that the country will have President and Vice-President of India from NDA during the period. He said, the present government at the Centre got a clear majority in Lok Sabha after thirty years and can contribute in substantial measure to nation building with 2022 as the target in this regard. The Prime Minister was speaking after releasing a compilation of speeches of NDA vice presidential nominee M Venkaiah Naidu at a function in Parliament House on 4th August. Mr Modi stressed on effective functioning of Parliament which is the collective responsibility of the members. He said, the Rajya Sabha needs to reflect on how it could guide the 125 crore Indians inspired by the spirit of discussions in the Constituent Assembly.
Former Union Minister M Venkaiah Naidu will be the new Vice President of India as he defeated Gopal Krishna Gandhi by 272 votes. Voting to elect the 13th Vice President was conducted with 98.21 per cent polling recorded. There was a straight fight between NDA’s candidate M Venkaiah Naidu and Opposition nominee Gopalkrishna Gandhi.Briefing media in New Delhi, Returning Officer Shemsher K Sharif said Mr Naidu received 516 votes against Gopalkrishna Gandhi’s 244 votes.771 votes out of 785 votes were cast in the elections.
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has said, the multi-pronged strategy of security, development and ensuring rights of local communities should be vigorously pursued to deal with Naxals. The Home Minister was speaking at a meeting in New Delhi to review the status of development projects and security-related issues in Left-Wing Extremism affected states. A Home Ministry statement said, different development projects, including road requirement plan, and those concerning air connectivity, power, education, health and banking were reviewed at the meeting.
Defence Minister Arun Jaitley has assured the Lok Sabha that all the forward posts are adequately strengthened to withstand enemy fire. Replying to questions in the House, Mr Jaitley said, there are well established Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to safeguard against enemy fire to minimise own casualties. The minister said, the government is taking measures to ensure modernisation of Indian Defence Forces to keep them in a state of readiness to meet operational and security challenges. Mr Jaitley said, the government regularly reviews the threat perception to secure borders and protect national interests.
The Government proposes to establish an additional 14 new AIIMS under various phases of the Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana in different parts of the country. Union Health Minister JP Nadda said this in the Lok Sabha. Replying to supplementaries on AIIMS and related healthcare system in India, the Minister said, the government is working on enhancing the capacity of the national capital’s medical institutes, which receive a large number of patients from across the country.
Parliament has passed a bill to declare the Indian Institute of Information Technology, Design and Manufacturing (IIITDM) at Kurnool in Andhra Pradesh as a centre of national importance. The Indian Institutes of Information Technology (Amendment) Bill, 2017 was passed by voice vote in Rajya Sabha. Lok Sabha had passed the bill on July 26. It provides for inclusion of IIITDM, Kurnool in the principal Act. This institute will be declared as an institute of national importance with the power to award degrees to the students. The legislation was approved by the Union Cabinet in February. The IIITDM would become the fifth institute with this tag.
The Union Cabinet has cleared a proposal to allow proxy voting to Non-Residential Indians, by amending electoral laws, a senior Government functionary was quoted as saying. The amended Representation of the People Act will allow nearly 16 million NRIs to exercise the right by appointing a proxy from their constituency to cast the vote.
Parliament has passed the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (Amendment) Bill, 2017. Replying to the debate on the bill in Rajya Sabha, HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar said deteriorating standard of education in government schools is a matter of concern and the government has taken several initiatives to improve the quality of education. Mr Javadekar said learning outcomes have been codified and handbooks have been provided to schools. He said parents will also be given copy of the outcomes so that they may know what their wards are expected to know in a particular class. School children will be required to pass examination in fifth and eighth class to move to next class. For this, examination will be held in March and those who are not able to clear this examination will be given another opportunity in May.