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Beno Zephine: In a first, candidate with 100% visual disability set to join IFS

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Tamil Nadu: Beno Zephine, 25- year-old woman from Tamil Nadu, has become the first-ever 100 per cent visually challenged person to become an IFS officer. On 12th June, she was informed by the External Affairs Ministry, that she has been admitted into Indian Foreign Service.

“I am really thankful to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, for taking this big decision. I am told the IFS was not identified for the blind. They make certain exceptions for candidates with low vision,” Beno told a national daily.

“I am grateful that in order to give me the assignment, the central government has modified some parameters,” Beno added.

In 2014, she secured an impressive all-India 343 rank in the country’s most prestigious examination. However, her post remained pending for over a year.

Beno Zephine, completed her masters in English at Loyola College, and is now pursuing Ph.D. at Bharatiyar University.

As per a report by the Times of India, Beno transcended the dependence on Braille books by switching to Job Access With Speech (JAWS), a software that allows visually challenged to read from a computer screen, to scan Tamil and English books.

She wishes to meet PM Modi and Tamil Nadu’s Chief Minister Jayalalitha before joining the service.

“I want to seek their blessings and thank them for all the support”, she told the national daily.

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Oli Assures Modi, Nepal’s Territory Won’t Be Used Against India’s Interests

After assuming office in February, Oli made his first foreign visit to India in April.

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Gokhale said that Modi's two-day visit to Nepal was aimed to strengthen bilateral relations
KP Sharma Oli, PM of Nepal, wikimedia commons

Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli has told his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi that Nepal’s territory will not be used against New Delhi’s interests, Indian Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said here on Saturday.

“Oli reiterated that they will be sensitive to our concerns and their territory will not be allowed to be used by anybody against India. Prime Minister Modi reciprocated the sentiments,” Gokhale told the media.

Gokhale called Oli’s view “very significant”.

There was a chill in India-Nepal ties during Oli’s earlier stint as Prime Minister between October 2015 and August 2016 when a border blockade blamed on New Delhi crippled Nepal’s economy.

There were also perceptions that Oli was leaning towards China than India.

Gokhale said that Modi’s two-day visit to Nepal was aimed to strengthen bilateral relations “whether it be cross-border electricity or cross-border connectivity”.

“We are looking into cross-border electricity and cross-border connectivity not only with Nepal but other neighbouring countries as well,” he said.

After assuming office in February, Oli made his first foreign visit to India in April.

Stating that India welcomed the restoration of democracy in Nepal, Gokhale said that both the government and the opposition in the Himalayan nation were parties to it.

He said both sides agreed to be committed towards the stated projects. “We will address this within a set timeline.”

Prime Minister, Narendra Modi stressed on the importance of service to others in his last Mann Ki Baat edition for 2017.
Modi is on Nepal visit for two days, wikimedia commons

According to Gokhale, Oli confirmed to Modi that Nepal will host the the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (Bimstec) summit this year.

Bimstec comprises seven countries lying in the littoral and adjacent areas of the Bay of Bengal — Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand.

Gokhale also said that Modi’s visits to cultural sites in Nepal “suggested that there should be strong people-to-people ties”.

Apart from offering prayers at temples in Nepal, the Indian leader inaugurated the Janakpur-Ayodhya bus service, a 900 MW hydropower project and announced Rs 100-crore aid to develop Janakpur city.

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He also held extensive discussions with Oli, President Bidhya Devi Bhandari and other government officials to better bilateral ties after which he said: “All misunderstandings with Nepal are over.”

Modi also met leaders of opposition parties, starting with former Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba and other members of the Nepali Congress.

He exchanged views on strengthening bilateral ties with former Prime Minister and Chairman of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Centre) Pushpa Kamal Dahal “Prachanda”. (IANS)

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