Citizens' Issues
Slew of measures announced to reduce Delhi pollution
Increasing the number of CNG buses, crackdown on polluting vehicles and industries and tree plantation drives are some of the many steps being taken by the Delhi government to curb rising pollution in the national capital, a statement said on Thursday.
 
As per the report on curbing pollution in the national capital submitted to the environment ministry, the Delhi government said surveillance against adulteration of diesel and petrol had begun in the city while the process of issuing pollution under control (PUC) certificates to vehicles was being made stringent.
 
"We are strengthening and expanding public transport and by the end of 2016, 1,380 semi-low floor buses, 500 mini buses, and 1,000 buses that will run on CNG under the cluster scheme will be introduced," the report said.
 
In addition, the PUC system is being made tamper proof and in the first six months of 2015, a total of 33,554 motorists have been prosecuted for not carrying valid PUC certificates.
 
Furthermore, entry of overloaded commercial vehicles too is being curtailed and between December 5, 2014 and June 30, 2015, a total of 3,734 vehicles were fined for polluting.
 
"The transport department is contemplating a remote sensing based PUC checking on the lines of Kolkata and is in the process of developing online pollution checking module where the pollution would be checked on real time basis and will be captured on the sensor instantaneously," the report said.
 
As far as industrial pollution is concerned, the Badarpur and Rajghat thermal power plants will soon install online monitoring system while the Timarpur Okhla plant has already installed it. The upcoming Ghazipur and Bawana plants will install the system before their commissioning.
 
The national capital has at present 20 stations to assess air quality. Setting up of at least 20 more in the national capital region has been recommended.
 
In addition, the department of forests has started the project of planting around 12 lakh saplings in the national capital by 2016.
 
Similar reports were submitted by Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan on steps taken to lower pollution in the national capital region.
 
Environment, Forests and Climate Change Minister Prakash Javadekar had three meetings with the environment ministers and senior officials of the four states between April and July.
 
A three month action plan and another for one year was formulated to tackle the four focus areas - agriculture, construction waste and demolition waste and vehicular pollution in the last meeting held on July 24.

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Facebook cancels Indian student's internship
Facebook cancelled an Indian-origin student's internship after he exposed a serious privacy flaw in the social media giant's messenger service, a media report said.
 
Aran Khanna's application, Marauder's Map, used data from Facebook Messenger to map users' location when they sent messages, Boston.com reported on Wednesday.
 
The computer science and math student at Harvard University in Massachusetts, US, posted about his app on social media sites Reddit and Medium in May this year and soon it went viral. 
 
The app caught the attention of Facebook and Khanna was asked to disable it.
 
However, before it was disabled, the extension was downloaded more than 85,000 times and "shared on over 200 publications", according to Khanna.
 
About a week later, Facebook released a Messenger app update to provide users "full control over when and how you share your location information".
 
Facebook cancelled Khanna's summer internship, saying he did not meet the high ethical standards expected from the interns.
 
The student accepted another internship with a tech start-up in Silicon Valley and later detailed the experience in a case study titled 'Facebook's Privacy Incident Response: A study of geolocation sharing on Facebook Messenger' in the Harvard Journal of Technology Science.

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Nifty, Sensex may dip again - Thursday closing report
Nifty will have made a temporary bottom, only if it closes above 8,430
 
We had mentioned in Wednesday’s closing report that while the market indices may put in a short bounce, the trend is lower. On Thursday, the indices in the Indian stock market improved and managed to close marginally higher, encouraged by positive macroeconomic government data. With the boost in market sentiment, the market is likely to hold, rather than suffer a sharp decline.
 
 
The Indian equity markets closed flat on Thursday, as the initial gains made on the back of positive macro-economic data diminished on account of the government's inability to pass key economic legislations on the last day of the monsoon session on Thursday.
 
Nevertheless, after three days of continued losses this week, the barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) closed 37 points up. The index had lost a total of 724 points during the first three trading days of the week.
 
The wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) also gained marginally -- by 6.40 points or 0.08 percent at 8,355.85 points.
 
Investors were seen hopeful of a rate-cut based on healthy macro-economic data points which were released late on Wednesday.
 
The macro-economic data points showed a fall in India's annual retail inflation rate to 3.78 percent in July and a rise in the factory output to 3.8 percent in June.
 
The market rallied in the morning and was up 279 points at one point during the day. The initial gains receded as negative cues such as the impasse over GST (goods and services tax) bill, and devaluation of the Chinese yuan coupled with a depreciating rupee impacted investor sentiments.
 
On the global front, the devaluation of the yuan just before the US Fed's monetary policy decision impacted the Indian rupee which fell to a 24-month-low at Rs.65.23 to a dollar.
 
On the bright side of the volatile day's trade, the possibility that the government might extend the "Monsoon Session" or call for a "Special Session" of parliament to pass the GST bill kept investors optimistic about the future of the key economic legislation.
 
Lately, investors have been reluctant to chase higher prices given the possibility that the reform process might be stalled due to the government's inability to conduct business in parliament.
 
Sector-wise, healthy buying was observed in banks, healthcare and automobile stocks, while metal, consumer durables and technology, entertainment and media (TECK) scrip came under selling pressure.
 
The S&P BSE bank index increased by 140.54 points, followed by healthcare index which gained by 139.27 points and automobile index which rose 81.02 points
 
However, the S&P BSE metal index tanked by 217.98 points, consumer durables index declined by 109.75 points and the TECK index tripped by 35.66 points.
 
The top gainers and losers of the major indices are given in the table below:
 
 
Among the Asian markets, Japan's Nikkei was up 0.99 percent, Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained by 0.43 percent, and China's Shanghai Composite Index rose by 1.76 percent. 
 
The closing values of the major Asian indices are given in the table below:
 

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