Churchill Brothers Score Maiden Win Against 10-Men Bengaluru
- VASCO : Churchill Brothers scored their maiden win of the season when they came back from behind to down 10-man Bengaluru FC 2-1 in the fifth round of the hero I-League match, here on Friday. After Anthony Wolfe (33rd) cancelled Sunil Chhetri 22nd minute goal, Chesterpoul Lyngdoh scored the winner in the 54th minute to give Churchill Brothers their first win at Tilak Stadium. They have moved to seventh place with four points from five matches. The defending champions, Bengaluru FC who suffered their second straight defeat remained on fourth place with 9 points. Bengaluru FC made three changes from the team they lost against East Bengal bringing in Nishu Kumar, Alwyn Gerorge and Roby Norales in place of Lalmangaisanga Ralte, Lenny Rodrigues and Udanata Singh. While the home team made two changes bringing in Surchandra Singh and Surahuddin Mollick in place of Brandon Fernandes and Seriton Fernandes.
- Bengaluru FC, who were looking to get back to winning ways after losing to East Bengal, controlled the midfield with Sunil Chhetri and Alwyn George combining well but could not get past the rival defence who kept them at bay until defender Fulganco Cardozo committed a foul on Roby Norales inside the box to concede a penalty. Sunil Chhetri converted the penalty to put the defending champion in the lead in the 22nd minute. Bengaluru defender John Johnson hesitated to intercept a long ball from Chesterpaul and Anthony Wolfe placed the ball to the far post past onrushing keeper Amrinder Singh in the 33rd minute. Churchill Brothers who were looking for their first win after drawing against DSK Shivajians came back strongly in the second half as they showed lot of urgency in their attack and Anthony Wolfe who scored the first goal set up Chesterpoul Lyngdoh inside the box with a through pass.
- The latter controlled the ball and before Johnson could get back to him he placed the ball into the net past keeper Amrinder Singh to his left. Bengaluru coach Alberto Rocha made two quick changes midway in the second half in search of the equaliser as they kept on the pressure and nearly scored but alert keeper Priyant Kumar Singh made excellent save punching the ball over the bar off in the 72nd minute off Vineeth shot. The scene shifted at the other end and Amrinder Singh had to make a save off Talgat shot. Bengaluru FC attempt to draw the match received a severe blow when they were reduced to ten men in the last 20 minutes when defender John Johnson got red card for a dangerous foul on Richard Costa and the home did well to keep the citadel in tact to score their first win at home.
Man Behind India's First Supercomputer 'Param' To Head Nalanda University
- PATNA : Computer scientist Vijay P Bhatkar, who led the development of India's first supercomputer, Param, after the US refused to sell supercomputers to India, will be the new chancellor of Nalanda University (NU). Bhatkar is the national president of Vigyan Bharati, a science body of the RSS. Bhatkar was appointed by President Pranab Mukherjee in his capacity as the NU visitor on Friday, six weeks after former Singapore minister George Yeo quit as NU chancellor. In his strong-worded resignation letter to Mukherjee, Yeo protested against the "unceremonious" ouster of interim VC Gopa Sabharwal, interpreting it as an attack on the autonomy of the varsity.
- Sabharwal had been directed by the NU governing body, headed by the chancellor, to continue as interim VC. But the Rashtrapati Bhavan asked her to demit office as she could not be given a second extension as per the University act. Soon after Sabharwal's ouster, Bihar CM Nitish Kumar had written to external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj, on December 5 last year, urging the Narendra Modi-led NDA government not to tamper with the essence behind the "idea of Nalanda". In 2015, NU's founding chancellor Amartya Sen had refrained from seeking a second term, saying that the Modi government did not want him to continue.
- Bhatkar served as a member of the scientific advisory committee to the PM, and the governing council of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research. He was also a member of the IT Task Force constituted by the then PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 1998. Bhatkar was awarded the Padma Shri in 2000. He also recieved Maharashtra Bhushan Award, the highest recognition of the government of Maharashtra, in 2000. The revival of the ancient Nalanda Mahavihara was mooted by former President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam in 2006. The university, backed by 17 countries, was inaugurated by Swaraj in 2014. The number of students has increased from 12 in the first batch (2014-16) to 130 from 13 different countries. Classes are held at a makeshift campus, while a sprawling campus is being developed near the ruins of the ancient Nalanda Mahavihara.
Bombay High Court Notice To Centre, State Over New Pension Scheme
- AURANGABAD : The Aurangabad bench of Bombay High Court recently issued notices to the Centre, state government and Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA), following a petition challenging the Central government's move to introduce New Pension Scheme (NPS) by enacting the PFRDA Act 2013. Under the new scheme, the contribution of subscribers i.e. employees of both central and state governments, including corporate employees is invested through Pension Fund Managers (PFMs) and these PFMs are public sector and private sector companies. Ganesh Landage and three permanent employees of the state's health department working at Beed approached the high court — through lawyer Sayyed Tauseef Yaseen — challenging the NPS, dubbing it as arbitrary, unreasonable and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution.
- The petition said under the NPS, the contribution of government employees is invested through three government companies, whereas the private sector employees have a choice of investment through private sector companies. The petitioners argued that such dispensation and restriction disallows them to tap the expertise of private sector fund managers. "The different investment guidelines and discrimination and classification between subscribers from private sector employees and government employees is not found on intelligible differentia and the classification has no rational relationship with the object sought to be achieved by PFRDA Act and thus violative of Artice 14 of the constitution," the petition said.
- It said "as the risk in the NPS is borne by the employee, the choice of PFMs shall be conscious decision of the employee and based on his perception of the pension fund, rather than a mandate by the employer". Following arguments, the division bench comprising justices VM Kanade and Sangitrao Patil on January 20 issued notices to the Union and state governments along with the PFRDA, returnable on February 17. SB Deshpande, assistant solicitor general, appeared for the central government.
99% Of Indians Over 18 Now Have Aadhaar Cards
- NEW DELHI : Over 99% of Indians aged 18 and above now have Aadhaar cards as more than 111 crore residents have enrolled themselves for the unique identification number. The increase in enrolments will come as a boost to the government's drive to make India a less-cash society as it is encouraging the use of AadhaarPay, a merchant version of Aadhaar-enabled payment system (AEPS). TOI had reported on January 23 that the government was nudging banks to encourage merchants to use AadhaarPay. Backed by the Aadhaar Act and 91.7% coverage of the total population, the government is set to accelerate the use of unique identification numbers in its social welfare schemes for disbursing entitlements and subsidies as it will help check duplication and pilferage.
- The government saved Rs 36,000 crore in two years even though the use of Aadhaar was restricted to a handful of schemes like PDS, household LPG supply and MGNREGA. "We all know Aadhaar was started by the previous government but at that time, it was only a digital identity. Under the government led by PM Narendra Modi, it has become a powerful tool of financial and future transformation," IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said. "Aadhaar is also becoming a powerful instrument to bridge the digital divide," he added.
- Sources said after the government banned high value notes, Aadhaar generation and its use for financial transactions saw a substantial jump. Aadhaar enrolment between March 2014 and May 2014 was 3-4 lakh per day and went up to around 5-6 lakh per day by October 2016. Since demonetisation, Aadhaar enrolment and update requests have been in the range of 7-8 lakh per day. Upbeat with the figures, Prasad said, "With demonetisation and Digital India drive towards less-cash economy, Aadhaar is all set to become a game-changer with AadhaarPay where customers don't need card, PIN, password or mobile as he/she can make transactions with thumb impression."
- He said the BHIM app was linked with Aadhaar so that transactions could be carried out in a simpler and transparent manner. The minister said around 119 banks were connected with the AEPS and around 33.87 crore transactions had taken place through this platform. Prasad said people often raised concerns of privacy breach but the Aadhaar Act ensured privacy of people.