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Modi calls for a reading movement across India

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Kochi, June 17, 2017: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday called for a reading and library movement across the country that would not just make people literate but bring about social and economic change.

Speaking at the launch of P.N. Panicker National Reading Day here, Modi noted that as a pilot project of digital libraries the Panicker Foundation is working with 18 public libraries in Kerala in collaboration with the Indian Public Library Movement, Delhi.

“I would like to see such a reading and library movement in the entire country. The movement should not be limited to making people literate. It should try to achieve the real goal of bringing social and economic change. The foundation of good knowledge should be followed by a super structure of a better society,” he said.

The Prime Minister said from the time of the Upanishads, persons with knowledge have been respected through the ages.

“We are now in the information age. Even today, knowledge is the guiding light,” he said.

“I believe in ‘people’s power’ and see big hope in such committed social movements. They have the capacity to make a better society and nation,” he said.

“It is said that one literate woman can educate two families, and I can say one woman can educate two generations,” Modi said.

“Kerala has been a torchbearer and inspiration to the whole nation in the field of literacy,” he said, urging the youth to take a pledge of reading.

Modi said Panicker was the driving spirit behind the library network in Kerala through Kerala Grandhasala Sangham with 47 libraries.

Panicker is known as the Father of the Library Movement in Kerala. The activities of the Kerala Grandhasala Sanghom that he initiated triggered a popular cultural movement in Kerala which produced universal literacy in the state in the 1990s.

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Rahul yet to get special permission for Kailash Mansarovar Yatra

The sources said that he could not apply during the stipulated period for the application to visit Kailash Mansarovar, and had applied for special permission, which is normally granted to the MPs but had not received a response to his application so far.

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New Delhi, June 22 (IANS) Congress President Rahul Gandhi, who had expressed desire to go for Mansarovar Yatra after Karnataka elections, has not received a response to his request for special permission from the External Affairs Ministry, party sources said.

The sources said that he could not apply during the stipulated period for the application to visit Kailash Mansarovar, and had applied for special permission, which is normally granted to the MPs but had not received a response to his application so far.

According to a MEA press release dated February 21, the last date for registration was March 23.

However, Gandhi had announced his desire to undertake the pilgrimage on April 29 at the Jan Akrosh rally at the Ramlila Maidan here.

This year, the Yatra is scheduled from June 8 to September 8 through two routes, according to MEA.

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Truckers ‘postpone’ strike following request from centre

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Truckers

Kolkata/New Delhi, June 22 (IANS) Truckers on Friday “temporarily postponed” their ongoing indefinite nationwide strike following a request from the Central government as Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari was out of station.

The strike, that began from June 18, had been called from June 18 against the high diesel prices, high toll rates and a sharp hike of third party insurance premium, and had entered the fifth day on Friday.

In a media release, All India Confederation of Goods Vehicle Owners’ Association — which had called the strike — said the decision was taken following a telephone call from the Centre, which asked the strikers to come for discussion after June 27.

“We have received telephone call from (the) Central ministry, that since the Minister is not in station till June 27, (they have requested us) to call off the strike and come for discussion after June 27,” said AICOGOA General Secretary Rajendra Singh and President B. Channa Reddy.

“In view of this and in public interest, we have (decided to) postpone the truckers’ strike,” they said.

The AICOGOA said the call for talks was received from Gadkari’s office.

“We received call from Union Minister Nitin Gadkari’s office and they have called us to talk… We have temporarily called off the strike because it was affecting truckers and people both,” another AICOGOA General Secretary Kausar Hussain told IANS.

Over 50 lakh vehicles remained off the road during the strike.

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Sahitya Akademi announces Bal and Yuva Puraskar for 2018

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Sahitya Akademi

New Delhi, June 22: India’s national academy of letters, the Sahitya Akademi, on Friday announced the names of 21 winners of its Bal Sahitya Puraskar and 21 recipients of the Yuva Puraskar for this year.

The Bal Puraskar awards will be conferred at a function on November 14, which is celebrated as Children’s Day, being the birth anniversary of India’s first Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru. The date for conferring the Yuva Puraskar awards has not been declared yet.

“The awards were recommended by jury members representing 22 Indian languages, and approved by the Executive Board of the Sahitya Akademi which met today under the Chairmanship of Dr. Chandrashekhar Kambar, President, Sahitya Akademi,” a statement said.

“Ten books of poetry, seven of short stories, three novels and one play” have been chosen for the Yuva Puraskar award.

The award comprises a casket containing an engraved copper-plaque and a cheque of Rs 50,000 for both types of awards.

In the children’s category, awards have been declared for: Jugallochan Das (Assamese), Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay (Bengali), Sitaram Basumatary (Bodo), Easterine Kire (English), Chandrakant Sheth (Gujarati), Divik Ramesh (Hindi), Kanchyani Sharanappa Shivasangappa (Kannada), Zareef Ahmad Zareef (Kashmiri), Kumud Bhiku Naik (Konkani), Vaidya Nath Jha (Maithili), P.K. Gopi (Malayalam), Khangembam Shamungou (Manipuri).

Also named for the awards are: Ratnakar Matkari (Marathi), Bhim Pradhan (Nepali), Birendra Mohanty (Odia), Tarsem(Punjabi), C.L. Sankhla (Rajasthani), Sampadanand Mishra (Sanskrit), Laxminarayan Hansda (Santali), Kalpana Ashok Chellani (Sindhi), Kriungai Sethupathy (Tamil), Naramshetti Umamaheswar Rao (Telugu) and Rais Siddiqui (Urdu).

The award in the Dogri language category will be announced at a later date.

Poetry dominated the Yuva Puraskar awards this year. They have been declared for Samragnee Bandyopadhyay (Bengali), Esha Dadawala (Gujarati), Aasteek Vajpeyi (Hindi), Wilma Bantwal (Konkani), Umesh Paswan (Maithili), Tongbram Amarjit Singh (Manipuri), Jayadratha Suna (Odia), Dushyant Joshi (Rajasthani), Muni Rajsundar Vijay (Sanskrit) and Bala Sudhakar Mouli (Telugu).

The awardees in the short stories category include Bipasha Bora (Assamese), Padmanabha Bhat (Kannada), Dheeba Nazir (Kashmiri), Chhuden Kabimu (Nepali), Rani Murmu (Santali), Suneel Krishnan (Tamil), Shahnaz Rahman (Urdu).

The awards in the ‘novel’ category will be given to Amal (Malayalam), Navnath Gore (Marathi) and Gurpreet Sehji (Punjabi). Champa Chetnani has been cited for her Sindhi play.

No book was “found suitable” in the English language category. Awards for Bodo will be declared at a later date, while no award has been announced for Dogri.

Established in 1954 by the Indian government, Sahitya Akademi is India’s premier literary institution, promoting preserving literature in 24 languages.

IANS

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