Regulations
Delhi to frame witness protection policy
The Delhi government on Thursday decided to formulate a comprehensive policy for protecting witnesses, an official said.
 
"The policy envisages categorisation of witnesses, creation of witness protection fund, procedure for processing such requests by the competent authority and the types of protection," the government said in a statement.
 
The Delhi High Court in 2013 had directed the state government to frame a witness protection policy to provide guidelines and principles which police, prosecution and executive agencies have to follow for protection of witness.
 
The statement said pursuant to the court order, home department had constituted a sub-committee comprising officers from law department, home department, directorate of prosecution and Delhi Police.
 
After much deliberation, it was decided to have a comprehensive policy for protecting the witnesses and the Delhi Witness Protection Scheme, 2015 was drawn. 
 
The Aam Aadmi Party government also claimed that Delhi would be the first state to have such a comprehensive policy.
 
"Delhi is the first state to notify witness protection policy today," Home Minister Satyendra Jain said in a tweet.

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Odisha aims to sell surplus power by 2016-17
Odisha plans to be self-reliant in the power sector and has set a target to sell surplus power generated in the state to other states by 2016-17, an official said on Thursday.
 
The state expects to avail 32,059 million units of power after the commissioning of many new power plants and as part of the state share from the Centre by 2016-17.
 
This was revealed at a review meeting called by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik over the performance of the Odisha Power Transmission Corporation Limited (OPTCL) and Grid Corporation of Odisha (Gridco).
 
The chief minister directed enhancing the capacity of power distribution utilities in the state for uninterrupted power supply to consumers.
 
He asked officials to connect all human settlements with electricity in a time-bound manner and reduce transmission and distribution loss.
 
The chief minister also directed the installation of 500 33/11 KV substations by 2017.

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States to be penalised for delay in transfer of AMRUT funds
The central government on Thursday said states and union territories will be penalised for any delay in transfer of funds to the local bodies under the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT).
 
"States and UTs shall release the central assistance along with the state and UT share to the urban local bodies within seven working days of the release of central share failing which penal interest will be levied," Minister of State for Urban Development Babul Supriyo said.
 
AMRUT aims to provide basic services like water supply and sewerage to households and build amenities in cities.
 
The minister said this provision was made in the mission guidelines to avoid delays in the execution of projects under the mission.
 
He said AMRUT was a time bound programme to be implemented over a period of five years from 2015 with stipulated reforms to be completed in four years.
 
"To avoid delays in implementation, the ministry has also left the task of preparation, appraisal and execution of projects to the states and UT unlike in the past under JNNURM," the minister told the Rajya Sabha.

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