Majority of Indians favour ban on smoking

A year after the ban on smoking in public places came in force, a study has found that an overwhelming majority of Indians favour the regulations prohibiting smoking at workplaces and public arenas. More than nine out of 10 Indians surveyed in four cities favour the regulations prohibiting smoking in public places. Support for regulations to ensure the ban is also strong in each city, with a large majority of those interviewed in Delhi (90 per cent), Mumbai (98 per cent), Chennai (92 per cent) and Kolkata (93 per cent) favouring it. Citizens in the four major metros also understand that second hand smoke is a serious risk to people's health.Ninety-two per cent believe exposure to second hand smoke is a serious health hazard for the non-smoker.

Army to equip its SF with GPS wrist watches in J-K

Army is all set to equip its special forces with Global Positioning System (GPS) wrist watches to help them in operations against militants in Jammu and Kashmir. With the aim of giving special forces a technological edge over militants, Northern command headquarters had recently floated tenders for the purchase of high-tech multi-utility GPS wrist watches, defence sources said. In the first phase, 120 such GPS watches would be procured for special forces and sealed bids - both technical and commercial have been invited from the bidders in this regard. Dozens of GPS devices have been recovered from infiltrating militants during encounters along the Line of Control (LoC) during the past year, they said."Militants are frequently using GPS devices for infiltration and reaching their guides along LoC. The watches are used by militants for navigation", the sources said.

HC issues notice to Centre on reservation policy

The Rajasthan High Court today issued notice to the Centre and the state government on a petition challenging the 109th Constitutional amendment extending the reservation policy by another ten years. The order was passed by a division bench comprising Justices R C Gandhi and G S Saraf on the petition filed by a social activist, Amarnath Vaishya. According to the counsel for the petitioner, Aruneshwar Gupta, the amendment providing reservation to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes had "miserably failed" in uplifting them in the last 60 years."There has been no utility of reservation in the last 60 years. It is useless to extend the reservation policy for next 10 years, which is to commence from January 10, 2010, in educational as well as service sectors," he said.He alleged that the policy had also created caste conflict. source:PTI

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