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Deal signed for improvement of two northeastern states

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Agartala: To improve the infrastructure of two northeastern states Tripura and Mizoram, the government and Asian Development Bank (ADB) have signed an $80-million loan on Thursday.

“The loan is the third tranche of a $200-million financing facility under the North Eastern Region Capital Cities Development Investment Program and will be used for investments in water supply, solid waste management and sanitation in Agartala and Aizawl,” the Ministry of Finance said in a statement.

“It will also support urban reforms, benefiting nearly a million people in the two cities,” it added.

Not only these two cities, previous programme tranches have provided assistance to three other cities in the northeast Shillong, Kohima, and Gangtok, the capital cities of Meghalaya, Nagaland and Sikkim, respectively.

Joint Secretary (multilateral institutions) in the department of economic affairs, Ministry of Finance, Raj Kumar, signed the agreement on Thursday on behalf of the Indian government

On the other side, Teresa Kho, country director in ADB’s India resident mission, signed on behalf of the ADB.

Whereas separate sub-project agreements were signed between central government officials and representatives of the governments of Tripura and Mizoram.

“The loan will support further investments to increase access to sustainable and improved urban services, with Aizwal and Agartala cities, selected for financing under the third tranche of the programme based on their progress on reforms and implementation performance under earlier tranches,” the Ministry statement said.

The third tranche loan from ADB’s ordinary capital resources has a 20-year term and it’s the responsibility of the Urban Development Ministry to implement the third tranche’s activities and overall programme, which are both due for completion by June 2019.

Manila-based ADB works to reduce poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members, including 48 from the region.(IANS)

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US Government Begins Probe into Google Over its Labour Practices

"Four of our colleagues took a stand and organised for a better workplace. This is explicitly condoned in Google's Code of Conduct, which ends: 'And remember... don't be evil, and if you see something that you think isn't right -- speak up.' When they did, Google retaliated against them," the employee activist group wrote in the blog post

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The US government has launched a probe into Google over its labour practices following a complaint from four employees who have been fired by the tech giant.

The four workers who filed a lawsuit against the company last week, claimed they were fired from Google for engaging in legally protected labour organizing, reports CNN Business.

The National Labor Relations Board has begun a formal probe into the complaint.

The tech giant has been accused of “union busting” and retaliatory behaviour after it sacked four employees for allegedly violating the company’s data security policies.

In a statement, Google said it dismissed four individuals who were engaged in intentional and often repeated violations of its longstanding data security policies.

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US begins probe into Google’s labour practices. Pixabay

“No one has been dismissed for raising concerns or debating the company’s activities,” said the company on Monday.

Google is in the midst of controversy over its strained relationship with employees.

In an earlier blog post on Medium, an employee activist group, “Google Walkout for Real Change”, said that the company is illegally retaliating against prospective union organisers.

Also Read: Cricket Icon Mahendra Singh Dhoni to Back Show on Army Officers

“Four of our colleagues took a stand and organised for a better workplace. This is explicitly condoned in Google’s Code of Conduct, which ends: ‘And remember… don’t be evil, and if you see something that you think isn’t right — speak up.’ When they did, Google retaliated against them,” the employee activist group wrote in the blog post.

The new CEO of Alphabet Sundar Pichai faces extreme challenges as Google stares at several high-profile external probes into its alleged anti-trust market and data practices — from the US to the European Union regulators — including internal tensions with staff over discrimination at work and HR transparency. (IANS)