Lok Sabha to formally elect the Speaker today
The 17th Lok Sabha will elect its Speaker on Wednesday as the House meets on the third day of the ongoing session. The BJP's surprise pick " Om Birla " is all set to win these polls unopposed after his candidature on Tuesday was backed by all NDA allies as also by the YSR Congress Party, the Biju Janata Dal and key Opposition parties, including the Congress.
The BJP submitted a notice to the Lok Sabha Secretariat, proposing the name of Birla " a two-time MP from the Kota-Bundi seat in Rajasthan " for the Speaker's post and bringing a motion for his election, which will be held on Wednesday.
As per sources, Prime Minister Narendra Modi proposed 57-year-old Birla's name for the post. The Rajasthan leader is considered to be close to both Modi and BJP president Amit Shah.
Birla's surprise nomination is seen by many in the BJP as a message from the top leadership that the party will promote leaders who keep a low-profile and work at the ground level.
Prime minister to chair all-party meet on one nation one poll proposal
Modi will chair a meeting of chiefs of all political parties who have at least one member in the Rajya Sabha or Lok Sabha to discuss the implementation of the one nation, one poll strategy at 3 pm in the Parliament Library Building.
West Bengal chief minister and TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee will be conspicuous by her absence at the meeting. Mamata, who had also skipped the meeting of all chief ministers called by the NITI Aayog as well as Modi's swearing-in ceremony, has communicated to Parliamentary Affairs Minister Prahlad Joshi that the matter of 'one country, one election' required consultations with experts, and the government should prepare a white paper on it rather than hurrying forward with the implementation.
"A proper response on such a sensitive and serious subject like 'one country, one election' in such a short time would not do justice to the subject. The matter requires consultations with constitutional experts, election experts and above all, the party members," she wrote in the letter. "Instead of going about it hurriedly, I would request you to kindly circulate a white paper on the subject to all political parties, inviting their views by providing adequate time. If you only do so, we will be able to give concrete suggestions on this important subject."
Bihar encephalitis toll mounts to 111
The toll in suspected encephalitis cases has climbed to 110 at the SKMCH and Kejriwal hospital in Bihar's Muzaffarpur district, and one patient died in the neighbouring East Champaran district. Although most of the encephalitis cases have been reported from Muzaffarpur, case have also been reported from adjoining districts like East Champaran and Vaishali.
Since the lychee fruit is being predominantly blamed for the spread of the virus, the government has ordered the Food Safety Commissioner to collect and test samples of lychees being sold in markets to ascertain possible toxic content.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who visited Muzaffarpur district on Tuesday, has directed the implementation of both short-term and long-term measures to improve the situation at SKMCH, which includes upgrading the 600 beds at the hospital to 2,500.
"As many as 900 beds will be added by the next year, while the remaining will be added gradually. Besides, the existing 50-bed paediatric ICU will be upgraded to 100 beds," he said, adding that a rest house will be constructed for people coming for treatment.
South Africa face unbeaten New Zealand in battle for World Cup survival at Edgbaston
New Zealand and South Africa will face off in Match 25 of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 at Birmingham's Edgbaston on Wednesday.
The campaigns of the two teams, neither of whom have tasted World Cup success till date, have been contrasting so far. While the Black Caps find themselves in a strong position with three wins from four games " their fixture against India getting washed out " South Africa started off with three consecutive losses, collected their first point through a rained off game against West Indies before hammering Afghanistan to collect their first win.
South Africa Vs New Zealand is scheduled for 3 pm (IST).
Facebook announces independent consortium with 27 companies
Facebook has officially announced its long-rumoured global cryptocurrency 'Libra', which it will launch in 2020. It also revealed a non-profit consortium called Libra Association " a group of 28 founding members, including Facebook, that has big names in tech such as Visa, Mastercard, PayPal, Uber, Lyft, Coinbase, eBay, Spotify, Vodafone, etc.
Together, the group will collaborate to develop the Libra cryptocurrency project.
NCLT to hear Jet Airlines' bankruptcy case today
The consortium of 26 bankers led by the State Bank of India, on Tuesday, took the grounded Jet Airways to the National Company Law Tribunal to recover their dues of over Rs 8,500 crore. The tribunal will hear the matter on Wednesday.
Started over 25 years ago by airline-ticketing-agent-turned-entrepreneur Naresh Goyal, Jet Airways stopped flying on 17 April after it ran out of cash. The unpaid lessors took away most of its 100-odd operational flights. The lenders have been trying to sell the airline as a concern for the past five months but have failed due to many a reason.
David Tennant, Hayley Atwell join Netflix's Criminals
David Tennant and Hayley Atwell are guest starring in Netflix's police procedural drama Criminals, with episodes set in France, Germany, Spain and the United Kingdom. Actors Youssef Kerkour and Clare-Hope Ashitey are also part of the list of artistes who will be appearing in the show's Britain-set episodes.