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Oj Corner
Special column
by OJ George

Cheque facility won't be withdrawn, says the govt
It is a matter of relief that the Union Government has clarified that cheque facility won't be withdrawn.

There were stray reports that an overenthusiastic government favaouring total digitalisation may go in for banning the cheque books.


It is gratifying to note that the government won't proceed with the reforms this way.
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Ramnath Kovind elected President of India
Ram Nath Kovind, put up by NDA, was on Thursday elected as the 14th President of India, polling more than 65 per cent of votes over the joint opposition nominee Meira Kumar.

71-year-old Kovind secured 2930 votes with a vote value of 7,02,044, Lok Sabha Secretary General Anoop Mishra, the Returning Officer for the Presidential Election, announced here.

Kovind will be the first BJP member to occupy the Rashtrapati Bhawan and the second Dalit President after K R Narayanan.

Kovind will assume office on July 25. He will be administered the oath of office by Chief Justice of India J S Khehar at a ceremony in Parliament.

In percentage terms, Kovind polled 65.65% votes while the balance 34.35% votes went to Meira Kumar, the joint opposition candidate. Kumar polled 1844 votes with a vote value of 3,67,314 vote values.

“This is the highest ever votes polled by an opposition candidate in a presidential election,” Deepender Hooda, the polling agent of Kumar, told reporters here.
A total of 77 votes, including 21 votes of members of Parliament, were declared invalid.

“It is an emotional moment for me. I thank everyone for their support,” Kovind said minutes after he was declared as the next President.

President Pranab Mukherjee, whose term ends on July 24, congratulated Kovind on his election as President.

“My best wishes to Kovindji. It has fallen upon him to uphold the Constitution in letter and spirit in these challenging times,” Meira Kumar told reporters.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP President Amit Shah, Vice Presidential candidate M Venkaiah Naidu Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari, Smriti Irani, Ramvilas Paswan among others congratulated Kovind on his election.
   
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