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12-18 February 2018 - 16-min

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6 12 - 18 February, 2018 Delhi/NCR News NEW DELHI TIMES Mughal Gardens at Rashtrapati Bhawan open for public viewing till 9th March A ◆◆By NDT Bureau @NewDelhiTimes s spring sets in and the blossoms are at their glory, the iconic Mughal Gardens of the Rashtrapati Bhavan has been thrown open to the public by President Ram Nath Kovind from 6th February. The garden, said to be the “soul” of the Presidential Palace, will be open to the visitors from February 6 to March 9, from 9:30am to 4:00pm. However, it will be closed on Mondays for maintenance and on March 2, on account of Holi, said Press Secretary to the President Ashok Malik. This year, the star attraction at the annual “Udyanotsav”, will be 10,000 tulip bulbs in eight colours, brought from the Netherlands. The tulips, which have been flowering since the first week of January, are expected to blossom till the end of February. Apart from the tulips, there are 70 varieties of seasonal flowers and 135 different kinds of roses which are the pride of Mughal Gardens. Roses are a permanent feature throughout the year, with rare varieties like the Green Rose, Black Rose and Angelique. Former President, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, had inaugurated a ‘fragrant rosery’ on one of the three terrace gardens during his tenure. Apart from the blossoms, the Mughal Gardens have a biodiversity park, with deer, ducks, turkeys, parakeets and migratory birds. DDA proposes uniform FAR, big relief to traders facing threat of sealing I ◆◆By NDT Bureau @NewDelhiTimes n a relief to traders protesting against the ongoing sealing drive in the Capital, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) proposed amendments to the Delhi Master Plan – 2021. The amendments, which include the provision for a uniform Floor Area Ratio (FAR) for residential as well as commercial plots. The DDA, however, said provisions of parking as per the prevailing standards shall be mandatory for approval or sanctioning of any revised plans by local bodies in case of shop-cum-residence plots or shopcum-residence plots designated as local shopping centres (LSCs). FAR is the ratio of a building’s total floor area (gross floor area) to the size of the piece of land upon which it is built. The urban body also proposed reducing penalty charges from “10 times to two times” for violation of other terms and conditions for properties meant for mixed use. At the meeting, the DDA proposed to “allow commercial activity in the basements in all commercial streets and areas, subject to payment of requisite charges without any discrimination”. “Once the public notification regarding the amendment is issued, there will be three days for inviting suggestions and objections from people, after which it will again come up for review and then finally sent to the Centre for approval,” the official said. India’s only International Newspaper

12 - 18 February, 2018 7 Delhi/NCR News RBI governor Urjit Patel keeps repo rate unchanged and maintains its neutral stance T ◆◆By NDT Bureau @NewDelhiTimes he Reserve Bank of India (RBI) kept its main repo rate on hold and retained its “neutral” stance, warning that it will closely monitor accelerating inflation but also saying economic growth needs to be “carefully nurtured”. T India’s fiscal deficit for FY19 forecasted at 3.5% of GDP ◆◆By NDT Bureau @NewDelhiTimes he Fitch group company, BMI Research in its latest report has revised India’s fiscal deficit forecast to 3.5 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) for the fiscal year 2018-2019 (FY19) as against its earlier estimate of 3.3 percent. per cent previously,” BMI Research said in a note. “The Indian government released its Union Budget for FY2018/19 (April- March) on February 1, which we believe seeks to support growth and job creation at the expense of a slower pace of fiscal consolidation as policymakers aim to achieve a USD 5 trillion economy by 2025,” the report added. NEW DELHI TIMES Delhi HC rebukes govt, agencies, over rising dengue, chikungunya menace T ◆◆By NDT Bureau @NewDelhiTimes he Delhi High Court has rebuked the city government and civic bodies over the rising number of dengue cases in the Capital. The AAP government and corporations have failed to check spread of dengue in the capital. “For heaven’s sake, do your duty,” said the bench. “It is always you (the Delhi government) versus the Centre, the corporations, some statutory authority. It has to be only versus? Can’t you work together,” the bench said, pointing that instead of agencies doing their duty, the court has to actively monitor even waste management. In keeping the rate at 6.00 percent for a third straight policy meeting, as widely expected, the RBI sought to perform a delicate balancing act. Surging oil and food prices pushed India’s annual consumer inflation to a 17-month high of 5.21 percent in December – well above the RBI’s 4 percent medium-target. Yet, echoing the views of government officials and business executives, the RBI appeared mindful that tightening prematurely could dent an economy experiencing only a tentative recovery after growing at the slowest pace in about three years. Delhi wakes up to 6.1 degrees and dense fog, disrupts train services D ◆◆By NDT Bureau @NewDelhiTimes elhi woke up to a cold on 9th February with the minimum temperature recorded at 6.1 degrees Celsius, three notches below the season`s average. At least 320 trains are running late, whereas 16 trains have been cancelled because of dense fog in Delhi and the neighbouring regions in North India. The maximum temperature hovered around 23 degrees Celsius, while humidity at 8.30 a.m. was 94 per cent. The maximum temperature on 8th February settled at 23.1 degrees Celsius, one notch below the season’s average and the minimum temperature was recorded at 8.5 degrees Celsius, four notches below the season’s average. India’s only International Newspaper It also said that there is room for fiscal slippage as the government seeks to achieve its 7.5 percent growth target. “We are therefore revising our forecast for the financial year 2018-19 fiscal deficit to come in at 3.5 per cent of GDP, from 3.3 T ◆◆By NDT Bureau @NewDelhiTimes Photo Credit : Shutterstock “While the Indian government loosened its central fiscal deficit target for FY2018/2019, it did not abandon its fiscal consolidation plans completely, but instead push its 3 per cent fiscal deficit target back by a year to FY2019/20,” the report said. The court wondered if both the entities “have any sense of responsibility” when the government blamed the corporations for their inaction. “We do not want any mortality in Delhi due to vector-borne diseases. If not for our intervention, you (the government and corporations) were happy doing nothing. You need to look at reducing garbage generation, instead of more landfills sites.” “We don’t want any mortality in Delhi due to vector-borne diseases. If not for our intervention, you (government and civic bodies) were happy doing nothing,” the Bench said. “You need to look at reducing garbage, instead of more sites for landfills. Else, soon Delhi will move out and only the landfills will remain,” it added. Delhi traders to give away roses on Feb 14, plan rally against sealing drive on Feb 15 raders in the national capital on Valentine’s Day -- February 14 -- would present roses to officials demanding an ordinance by the centre to end the sealing drive in Delhi. This would be followed up by a mega rally against the drive at the Ramleela Maidan on February 15, traders’ body Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) announced. The traders would give roses to civic agency officials under the My Valentine-My Shop campaign on February 14. “We will press for our demand for an ordinance by the Centre to end the sealing drive,” said CAIT, general secretary, Praveen Khandelwal. The civic bodies are conducting the sealing drive against commercial units, under the supervision of a Supreme Court- appointed monitoring committee, since December last year. Scores of commercial units have been sealed and fines have been imposed on traders over violations of Delhi Master Plan 2021 and non-payment of conversion charges.

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