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October 13, 2016: Support for reservation quota for women in parliament found its resonance on Thursday among participants at the ongoing Kumaon Literature Festival as well.

Speaking at a packed session of the festival’s second edition here, women speakers flayed the stalling of the bill that grants 33 percent reservation to women in parliament.


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“Issues regarding Women’s Reservation Bill need to be discussed across all parties, especially those opposing it so that it gets passed in the Lok Sabha,” said Nupur Sharma, a young leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party.

“It should be the responsibility of each political party to allocate one-third of their tickets to women candidates,” Sharma said.

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“Merely increasing the numbers alone will not do any good; there is a desperate need for good quality women leaders in the country,” added author-columnist Tuhin Sinha.

She said there have been good women leaders at the regional and national levels, but the phenomenon has not trickle down much.

“Women’s journey into politics should be by default and not designed, because when you reserve a particular number of seats by rotation, it will encourage more nepotism, and produce leaders without quality and may also give rise to dynasty rule,” Tuhin said.

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TV commentator Abhay Kumar Dubey said the passage of the Women’s Reservation Bill will prove to be a game changer for women, society and the nation.

“It is high time men stop sitting on a high pedestal and explain how and what women should do in politics,” said Congress spokesperson Priyanka Chaturvedi.

“The entire society is responsible for handling women’s isues; it is not women politicians’ responsibility alone to bring about a change in the mindset of people regarding their issues and their route to politics,” Chaturvedi said.

Another session on ‘In Crisis We Act’ saw the participation of All India Trinamool Congress leader Dinesh Trivedi.

A session on ‘My Lords, I Rest My Case’ witnessed participation of Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi and Supreme Court Justice A.K. Sikri, with the latter discussing how judiciary influences literature and how writing of judgments is drawn from the literary world.

In the session on ‘A Compulsive Questionnaire,” Carnatic musician-cum-author T.M. Krishna spoke.

“Artistes are now bent upon performing in such a manner that it satisfies everybody in the audience; this is merely marketing of art and not sharing, which is the original intention of art,” he said. (IANS)

(Rachel V.Thomas is in Jim Corbett at the invitation of the Kumaon Literature Festival organisers. She can be contacted at rachel.t@ians.in)


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Pat Gelsinger, CEO - Intel

Intel saw its stock tumbling by more than 8 percent after the chipmaker said the industry-wide component shortage affected its PC chip business during the third quarter (Q3). Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger told CNBC late on Thursday that he didn't expect the semiconductor shortage to end until 2023. "We're in the worst of it now, every quarter, next year we'll get incrementally better, but they're not going to have supply-demand balance until 2023," Gelsinger was quoted as saying.


The company delivered its Q3 results with revenue up 5 percent (year-over-year) driven by strong demand in its DCG and IoTG businesses, despite the highly constrained industry-wide supply environment. "Q3 revenue was $18.1 billion slightly below our guide due to shipping and supply constraints that impacted our businesses," George S. Davis, Chief Financial Officer, said in a statement. He also announced plans to retire from Intel in May 2022. In the third quarter, the company generated $9.9 billion in cash from operations and paid dividends of $1.4 billion.

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Micro-blogging site Twitter has announced that its audio chatroom Spaces is now open to anyone who wants to host.

Micro-blogging site Twitter has announced that its audio chatroom Spaces is now open to anyone who wants to host. The Spaces team in a tweet said that the users on both Android and iOS will now be able to host Spaces. "The time has arrived -- we're now rolling out the ability for everyone on iOS and Android to host a Space," the firm said in a tweet.

Earlier this year, the company had limited access to hosting Spaces to accounts with at least 600 followers, saying that it found these accounts would be more likely to have a good experience due to the existing audience. Twitter recently announced a new accelerator programme for creators on its audio conversation platform Spaces, to "discover and reward" around 150 creators with technical, financial and marketing support.

The 'Twitter Spaces Spark' programme is a three-month accelerator initiative. Those selected will get a stipend of $2,500 per month, $500 in monthly ad credits to spend promoting their Spaces on Twitter and early access to new Twitter features. They will also get support from Twitter's official social media handles, and "opportunities for prioritised in-app discoverability for well-performing Spaces".

Twitter has also announced plans to roll out paid Ticketed Spaces for iOS users where some hosts on its live audio feature can now sell access to Ticketed Spaces. Twitter had previously said that it will take a 3 per cent cut of creators' earnings from Ticketed Spaces. (IANS/ MBI)


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Taliban is being supported by other countries, who are asking the United Nations to work towards its economy and people.

At least 10 regional powers have joined the new Taliban rulers in Afghanistan in their call to the United Nations to help the country bail itself from the feared economic collapse and a humanitarian catastrophe.


At a regional-level meeting in Moscow, Russia, China, Pakistan, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan sided with the Taliban delegation and called on the UN to convene a United Nations donor conference at the earliest to help rebuild the ear-torn Afghanistan.

"It should take place with the understanding that the main burden should be borne by the forces whose military contingents have been present in Afghanistan over the past 20 years," said a joint statement of the Moscow conference.

Voices of concern and criticism were also raised against the United States, which opted not to attend the talks citing 'technical reasons'. The US was criticised for invading Afghanistan after September 11, 2001 and after 20 years, opted to an chaotic withdrawal, which created easy inroads for the Taliban to take control of the country.

It was also highlighted that international aid is the need of the hour for Afghanistan as any instability in the country would have a spillover effect on the regional countries and could threaten regional stability.

The Taliban takeover of Afghanistan has brought with it looming fears and memories of the '90s, when practices like public stoning, hardline setup and marginalisation of women were normal.

However, the Taliban, under the new government setup, have assured that rights of women will be guaranteed.

"Afghanistan will never allow its soil to be used as a base for anyone to threaten the security of another country," said Taliban Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi.

"Isolating Afghanistan is in no one's interest. The meeting is very important for the stability of the entire region," said Deputy Prime Minister in the Taliban setup, Abdul Salam Hanafi.

The regional powers, including Russia, have maintained that the Taliban are a new reality, calling on them to work towards the formation of an inclusive government with representation from all ethnic groups and political figures.

While the regional powers recognised the need for immediate aid and help for Afghanistan, they have declined to give official recognition to the Taliban government.

"Kremlin recognises Taliban's efforts to try and stabilise the situation in Afghanistan. A new administration is in power now. We note their efforts to stabilise the military and political situation and set up work of the state apparatus," said Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

The Moscow conference holds great importance, as it is the most significant international meeting since the Taliban takeover.

However, the Taliban have been given a clear direction to first meet and fulfil the promises they made when they assumed power, which includes rights to women and an ethnically inclusive government. (IANS/JB)

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