The government today asserted that India will not
compromise on data sovereignty and it is committed to ensure safety and
security of messaging on platforms like WhatsApp.
Replying to calling attention motion in the Rajya
Sabha today on reported use of spyware Pegasus to compromise phone data of
some persons through WhatsApp, Electronics and IT Minister, Ravi Shankar
Prasad informed that not a single FIR has been lodged and so far, his
ministry has received no complaint in this matter. He said, there are
adequate provisions in IT act to ensure safety and security of messaging on
Mr. Prasad said, there are standard operating
procedures which are rigorously followed by security agencies and
authorities for protecting the sovereignty and integrity of the country. He
stressed that these standard operating procedures must be followed in the
interest of the nation and clarified that no unauthorized interception was
He also said, digital players are welcome to
contribute to the growing digital market of India but they have to
understand that safety and security of Indians is prime importance.
On the snooping issue, the Minister informed that
CERT-IN had sent a notice to Israel based company NSO on 26th November of
this month seeking details about the malware and its impact on Indian users.
Responding to opposition queries on data protection
bill, Mr. Prasad said, work is in progress in that direction and the
legislation will be robust in nature.
He also took a dig on opposition members’ questions
wondering why journalist, leaders and others questioning the government over
The government has said, the fundamentals of Indian
Economy is strong and the GDP growth rate is expected to pick up from the
third quarter of Financial Year 2019-20.
While interacting with media in New Delhi on GDP
numbers released today, Chief Economic Adviser K Subramanian said, IMF has
projected India's GDP growth at 6.1 per cent in 2019-20 and 7 per cent in
Financial Year 2020-21 in it's recently released report on World Economic
Economic Affairs Secretary Atanu Chakraborty said,
mega steps of reducing government stake in PSUs below 51 per cent has not
He further said, Globally India is the fastest growing
economy and expects an increase in investment, consumption and sentiment.
According to official data released today, India's
economic growth slipped to 4.5 per cent in the July-September period of this
The previous low was recorded at 4.3 per cent in the
January to March period of 2012-13. The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth
was registered at 7 per cent in the second quarter of 2018-19.
India's wheat production could jump to a second
consecutive annual record in 2020 as the wettest monsoon in 25 years is set
to help farmers in expanding the area under the winter-sown crop while also
boosting yields, industry officials told Reuters.
But that higher production would add to India's
already swelling inventories, potentially forcing the world's second-biggest
wheat producer to ramp up procurement of the grain from farmers and provide
incentives for overseas sales to support local prices.
The country received monsoon rains during the
June-September season that were 10% above average and the rainfall continued
during October and November, increasing soil moisture levels required for
With the new MSP setting, export prices would be above
$300 a tonne on a free-on-board basis, while supplies from the competing
countries are available below $250 a tonne, said one Mumbai-based dealer
with a global trading firm.
Higher production and negligible exports could force
the government to increase procurement from farmers to ensure prices stay at
or above the MSP, said Galipelli at Inditrade.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has announced a 400
million dollar Line of Credit of to Sri Lanka to boost the island nation's
In a joint press statement after meeting visiting Sri
Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in Delhi this afternoon, Mr Modi said
that India will also extend a 50 million dollars Line of Credit to Sri Lanka
to fight terrorism.
He said, strengthening mutual cooperation in dealing
with terrorism was discussed in detail. He assured the Sri Lankan President
of India's full assistance in taking his country on the path of rapid
Describing the meeting with Mr Rajapaksa as fruitful,
the Prime Minister said, a strong and prosperous Sri Lanka is not only in
the interest of India but also in the interest of the entire Indian Ocean
Mr Modi said, India gives priority to its relations
with Sri Lanka under its Neighbourhood First' Policy. He expressed
confidence that the Sri Lankan Government will carry forward the process of
reconciliation to fulfil the aspirations of the Tamils for equality,
justice, peace and respect.
The Sri Lankan President said in his statement that
the discussions were cordial and reassuring and a major focus area of the
deliberations was on security cooperation. He said, they discussed the
fishermen's issue in length.This is Mr Gotabaya's first overseas visit since
Union Government is planning to set up a new rocket
launch pad near Kulasekarapattinam in Tamil Nadu. At present, the Indian
Space Research organisation (ISRO) has two launch pads at Satish Dhawan
Space Centre (SDCC) in Sriharikotta, Andhra Pradesh.
The development comes on the backdrop of increasing
launches from India, both for domestic as well as international customers.
The new launch pad is intended to be used for future
Indian rockets including- Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) Mk
III, Avatar Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV), Unified Modular Launch Vehicle (UMLV),
Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV), and even older ones like Polar
Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle
(GSLV). However, the government did not elaborated on Launchpad’s exact
As per ISRO, its workhorse Polar Satellite Launch
Vehicle (PSLV) has launched as many as 84 satellites from 1994 to 2015, PSLV,
of which 51 were for international customers. In 2018, the ISRO launched 17
missions but now number of launches every year by space agency has increased
Satish Dhawan Space Centre (or SHAR spaceport) at
Sriharikotta is responsible for integration of launchers. SDCC houses two
operational launch pads from where all GSLV and PSLV flights take place.
ISRO has launched most of its customer satellites with its PSLV.