Archive | August, 2014

New delivery vehicle holds promise against AIDS

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New delivery vehicle holds promise against AIDS

Posted on 31 August 2014 by GGS News

New York, 31 Aug : Scientists have developed a sensory tested drug delivery vehicle that can protect women against the spread of sexually transmitted infections during unprotected intercourse.

The semi-soft vaginal suppository is made from the seaweed derived food ingredient carrageenan and loaded with the antiviral drug Tenofovir.

“Microbicides – compounds that can be applied vaginally or rectally – offer a way to slow the spread of the (AIDS) virus,” noted lead researcher Toral Zaveri, a post-doctoral scholar in food science at Pennsylvania State University’s college of agricultural sciences.

Containing agents known to prevent transmission of HIV and other viruses, microbicides can be inserted into the vagina prior to intercourse as a gel, cream, foam, sponge, suppository or film.

“Carrageenan was selected over gelatin because it offers a number of important advantages. Because carrageenan is plant based, it is acceptable to vegetarians, there is no risk of animal-acquired infections and it avoids religious objections,” Zaveri explained.

Also, it is more stable than gelatin at higher temperatures common in tropical regions of the world.

As part of the research, Zaveri conducted extensive sensory perception testing to assess the acceptability of the suppositories among women.

Women participating in the study were presented with suppositories – without the drug – in a variety of sizes, shapes and textures.

They indicated their preferences and rated the suppositories according to the ease of insertion.

“Understanding women’s perception of the suppository and the reasons behind their choices is a critical step in the development of the suppository as a vaginal drug delivery system,” Zaveri said.

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US welcomes proposed EU sanctions on Russia

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US welcomes proposed EU sanctions on Russia

Posted on 31 August 2014 by GGS News

US, 31 Aug : The United States has welcomed the European Union’s decision to impose fresh sanctions on Russia if it continues to escalate the conflict in Ukraine, giving it a week’s time to dissipate the tensions.

“We welcome the European Council’s consensus today to show strong support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and to prepare further sanctions for consideration in coming days,” White House National Security spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said yesterday in a statement.

“We are working closely with the EU and other partners to hold Russia accountable for its illegal actions in Ukraine, including through additional economic sanctions,” she added.

Expressing US support for Ukraine, Hayden said, “We call on Russia to immediately remove its military, including troops and equipment, from Ukraine and end its illicit support to the separatists.”

EU had threatened to impose fresh trade sanctions on Russia after Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko visited Brussels yesterday and urged the council members to slap tougher sanctions on its eastern neighbour for its “military aggression and terror”.

Poroshenko warned of an imminent “full-scale war” between the two countries if Russia continue with its support to the pro-Moscow rebels in Eastern Ukraine, amid fears that an escalated armed conflict might spill over in other parts of Europe as well.

“Thousands of the foreign troops and hundreds of the foreign tanks are now on the territory of Ukraine,” Poroshenko told reporters, “There is a very high risk not only for peace and stability for Ukraine but for the whole peace and stability of Europe.”

Ukraine accused Russia last week of “invasion by stealth” by sending in regular armored troops to turn the tide in the five month old conflict and break the siege by Ukrainian forces of two rebel controlled cities of Donetsk and Luhansk farther north.
NATO warned Thursday that about 1,000 Russian troops are fighting inside Ukraine and well over 20,000 have been amassed near the border.

Russia has denied helping the insurgents and rubbished reports of direct military involvement in the uprising in the east of the country.

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Ganesh Chaturthi special recipe: Badaam Laddoo

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Ganesh Chaturthi special recipe: Badaam Laddoo

Posted on 31 August 2014 by GGS News

GGS NEWS : 31 Aug : besan ladoo recipe – i don’t think i need to write anything about besan ladoo. every indian knows about besan ladoo. it is one of the most common sweets made during every festive or special ocassions in india.

for my international readers who are new to the words besan and ladoo – basically these are sweetened roasted chickpea flour balls spiced with cardamom and nutmeg. besan ladoos are delicious and also make for a nice sweet treat.

this besan ladoo recipe is simple and easy to make. just some wrist muscle power is required to stir the ladoo mixture 🙂

to make these ladoos you can use either powdered sugar or regular fine granule sugar. if you use the latter then the ladoos have a grainy texture and has its own taste and charm. for a smooth softer textured ladoos, add powdered sugar.

i usually add a little extra ghee to make the ladoos. however these besan ladoos can be made with 1/4 cup ghee too. the ladoos can be made with oil too, but while making the ladoo balls, they don’t hold shape as well as the ones made with ghee.

apart from this method, i have also shared the other way of making besan ladoos. in that version the besan is roasted first for few minutes and then ghee is added. personally, i prefer this 2nd method in which we dry roast the besan in ghee for some minutes. you can make the besan ladoo with either way.

lets start step by step besan ladoo recipe:

1: heat ghee in a thick bottomed pan. add the besan and stir. keep on stirring and continue to roast for 6-7 minutes on a low flame, till you start getting a nutty fragrance from the besan (chickpea flour).

roast besan

2: continue to roast besan on a low flame till the color has changed and the ghee starts to release from the besan. approx 14-15 minutes and the aroma of the roasted besan will be clearly felt. if the besan is not roasted well then you will get a raw taste in the ladoo.

roast besan well for besan ladoo recipe

3: add superfine sugar or powdered sugar. i added organic unrefined cane sugar.

mix sugar besan mixture

4: stir & mix on a low flame for 5-7 minutes remember to keep on stirring so that the mixture does not stick to the bottom of the pan and burns.

stir besan

5: add dry fruits and cardamom powder. i have added raisins here.

add dry fruits to roasted besan

6: stir the besan mixture well. let the besan ladoo mixture get warm or cool down.

besan ladoo mixture

7: once the besan ladoo mixture cools down or is warm enough for you to handle, then make small or medium sized besan ladoos from the mixture.

besan ladoos

8: serve besan ladoos immediately or store them in an airtight container.

 usually add a little extra ghee to make the ladoos. however these besan ladoos can be made with 1/4 cup ghee too. the ladoos can be made with oil too, but while making the ladoo balls, they don’t hold shape as well as the ones made with ghee.

apart from this method, i have also shared the other way of making besan ladoos. in that version the besan is roasted first for few minutes and then ghee is added. personally, i prefer this 2nd method in which we dry roast the besan in ghee for some minutes. you can make the besan ladoo with either way.

lets start step by step besan ladoo recipe:

1: heat ghee in a thick bottomed pan. add the besan and stir. keep on stirring and continue to roast for 6-7 minutes on a low flame, till you start getting a nutty fragrance from the besan (chickpea flour).

roast besan

2: continue to roast besan on a low flame till the color has changed and the ghee starts to release from the besan. approx 14-15 minutes and the aroma of the roasted besan will be clearly felt. if the besan is not roasted well then you will get a raw taste in the ladoo.

roast besan well for besan ladoo recipe

3: add superfine sugar or powdered sugar. i added organic unrefined cane sugar.

mix sugar besan mixture

4: stir & mix on a low flame for 5-7 minutes remember to keep on stirring so that the mixture does not stick to the bottom of the pan and burns.

stir besan

5: add dry fruits and cardamom powder. i have added raisins here.

add dry fruits to roasted besan

6: stir the besan mixture well. let the besan ladoo mixture get warm or cool down.

besan ladoo mixture

7: once the besan ladoo mixture cools down or is warm enough for you to handle, then make small or medium sized besan ladoos from the mixture.

besan ladoos

8: serve besan ladoos immediately or store them in an airtight container.

if you are looking for more sweet festival recipes then do check coconut ladookesar burfiukadiche modakfried modak, suji halwa, motichur laddu and banana sheera or halwa.

besan ladoo recipe details are below:

2.5 from 2 reviews
besan ladoo – makes 10-12 ladoos
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
besan ladoo – sweet, nutty ladoos made from gram flour.
Author: dassana
Recipe type: sweets
Cuisine: indian
Serves: 2-3
Ingredients (american measuring cup used, 1 cup = 250 ml)
  • 2 cups besan
  • ¼ to ½ cup organic ghee/clarified butter
  • ⅔ to ¾ powdered sugar or superfine sugar as required ( i added organic unrefined cane sugar)
  • 3-4 green cardamoms
  • 1 tbsp raisins
  • 1 tbsp chopped cashews or almonds (optional)
  • a few chironji seeds/charoli or cashew halves to garnish (optional)
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Instructions
  1. heat ghee in a thick bottomed pan or kadai.
  2. add the besan and stir.
  3. stir and continue to roast for 6-7 minutes on a low flame, till you start getting a nutty fragrance from the besan.
  4. continue to roast on a low flame till the color has changed and you start seeing the ghee beginning to release from the besan. approx 14-15 minutes. the aroma of the roasted besan will be clearly felt.
  5. add sugar. stir & mix for 5-7 minutes remember to keep on stirring so that the mixture does not stick to the bottom of the pan and burns.
  6. add dry fruits and cardamom powder and stir well.
  7. let the besan mixture warm or cool down.
  8. don’t cover the pan with any lid while the mixture is cooling down.
  9. once the besan ladoo mixture cools down or is warm enough for you to handle, then make small or medium sized besan ladoos from the mixture.
  10. serve besan ladoos immediately or store them in an airtight container.
Notes
if you are not able to make the ladoos if the mixture is dry, then add 1 or 2 tbsp of melted hot ghee in the mixture and mix well.if you are not able to make the ladoos of the mixture is too smooth and does not hold shape. then let the mixture cool and make the ladoos. if still not able to, then add refrigerate the mixture for 20-30 minutes. after refrigerating the mixture becomes firmer and then you can form the ladoos easily.remember too do the entire roasting on a low flame. also continuous stirring is required so as to get a uniform cooking and even color.

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2boyz Records Dj Rinks Folk It Up Album Released

Posted on 31 August 2014 by GGS News


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NASA’s Mars rover Opportunity to have its memory wiped

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NASA’s Mars rover Opportunity to have its memory wiped

Posted on 31 August 2014 by GGS News

NASA’s Mars rover Opportunity captured this view southward just after completing a 338-foot (103-meter) southward drive, in reverse, on Aug. 10, 2014.

Washington, 31 Aug : Like any computer on Earth, long-duration space robots’ memories sometimes need to be reformatted. This is certainly the case for NASA’s veteran Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity that has had more than its fair share of computer glitches recently.

So the time has come, according to mission managers at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, in Pasadena, Calif. — the little robot needs a memory wipe.The decision to reformat Opportunity’s flash memory early next month is prompted by the multiple computer resets the rover has been experiencing. This month alone, Opportunity has had to be rebooted a dozen times, interrupting valuable time that should be taken up with carrying out science near the rim of Endeavour crater.

“Worn-out cells in the flash memory are the leading suspect in causing these resets,” said JPL’s John Callas, project manager for NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Project. “The flash reformatting is a low-risk process, as critical sequences and flight software are stored elsewhere in other non-volatile memory on the rover.”Flash memory allows data to be stored from Opportunity’s surface operations even when the rover is in a powered-down down state. Not so dissimilar to the memory that stores photos inside your cellpone or important documents in a memory stick, even flash drives become worn down after continuous use.

Reformatting Opportunity’s flash drive will identify corrupt or damaged cells, flagging them to avoid being used by the rover’s computers, hopefully preventing the unexpected resets that are plaguing the mission.

Five years ago, the team successfully performed a reformat of sister rover Spirit’s memory to stave off the bout of “amnesia” events it was experiencing. Sadly, in 2010, NASA had called off efforts to contact the rover after it became jammed in a sand trap at Gusev Crater months earlier.Over a decade after landing on the Red Planet in 2004, this will be the first memory reformat for Opportunity, one that NASA engineers are confident will be trouble free.

Before the reformat can begin, Opportunity’s handlers will download all available data from Opportunity’s flash drive and switch it into a mode that does not use flash memory, then the reformat can commence.

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Delhi private schools unhappy over order on Narendra Modi’s live address

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Delhi private schools unhappy over order on Narendra Modi’s live address

Posted on 31 August 2014 by GGS News

NEW DELHI, 31 Aug : Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s initiative to reach out to every student through TV, radio and the Internet on Teachers Day has failed to enthuse private schools of Delhi which feel that “forcing” them to make arrangements for it will dampen the celebration of the occasion.

The Directorate of Education (DoE) of Delhi government has issued a notification directing all private as well as government schools to organise a broadcast of the Prime Minister’s address and a Question and Answer session with school children through television or through Internet from 3 p.m. to 4.45 p.m. on September 5.

The directive clearly states that “any laxity in the arrangements shall be viewed seriously.”

The DoE notification came following an order by the Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) that all the schools throughout the country will have to make arrangements so that students can watch the Prime Minister’s live address on TV.

The government directive asked all head of schools to make available the requisite number of televisions, set-top box connections, projectors, screens, amplifiers and generator sets or inverters on hiring basis, if these are not available in the schools.

Though a number of private schools termed the initiative as “good and positive”, they feel making the necessary arrangements for showing the address to the students will put lot of burden on the teachers and they will not be able to celebrate the day.

“It’s a good initiative on part of the Prime Minister to bond with students and also take efforts to enhance the image of teachers in the eyes of students. But Teachers Day is a special day for the teachers to enjoy but now they will end up spending the entire day to ensure implementation of the government directive,” said Ameeta Mulla Wattal, Principal of Springdales, Pusa road.

Wattal also talked about “many structural, administrative and technological difficulties” in implementing the government directive.

Madhulika Sen, Principal of Tagore International school, Vasant Vihar said many private schools will find it difficult to make the arrangements for showing PM’s address to the students.

“The main concern is getting all the students assembled at one place and then making them listen to the PM. We have two auditoriums so we would be able to manage. But what about the smaller private schools,” Sen asked.

She, however, said the initiative is a good one to get connected with students. “Students are eagerly looking forward to hear him,” she said.

Another school principal, on condition of anonymity, said implementation of the government directive will require “lot of expenditure” and that the schools are unhappy about “the way it is being forced on them“.

“Besides the expenses, we will have the problem of lack of space in our school. We will allow the nursery students and students till class 5 to leave early. They are too young to understand the speech and will be tired by afternoon,” the principal said.

Authorities of a number of other private schools also expressed unhappiness over the government directive.

Principals of several government schools refused to comment when asked about their reaction to the directive by the DoE.

According to the directive of DoE, government schools can use funds from Vidyalaya Kalyan Samiti (VKS) for putting in place the necessary arrangements.

“In government schools, all the necessary expenditure for hiring items for aforesaid arrangements shall be incurred from VKS fund,” the directive stated.

It said the Prime Minister’s interaction with students would be telecast live by Doordarshan through its national and regional channels. It would also be available through live webcasting on different platforms of Doordarshan and the website of MHRD.

“Therefore, all heads of schools of government,government aided, unaided, MCDs, NDMC and Cantonment Board Schools shall make arrangement to assemble the children in order from 2.30 pm to 4.45 pm on that day so that children view the Prime Minister’s address.”

Further the directive says that all heads of the government schools of Delhi running in single shift shall make arrangement to hold the classes from 1.00 pm to 5.30 pm on September 5.

Government aided and unaided schools may opt for either of the timings from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm or 01.00 pm to 05:30 pm.

The Delhi government has asked the Education Department to to submit a report on preparedness for the event by 5 pm, September 2.

The directive also states that parents should be informed well in advance about the same through text messages, almanac, students diary, displaying on the notice board of the school etc., for security and safety of children during commutation.

In addition to that, all heads of schools have been asked to submit details of number of students viewing the programme to DOE.

“All districts of DDEs/EOs/DEOs will visit the schools during this time falling in their jurisdiction to monitor and ensure that directions are being complied with in letter and spirit.

“All above directions are to be complied with strictly by HOS of govt, govt aided/unaided/MCDs/ NDMC /cantonment board schools. Any laxity in the arrangements shall be viewed seriously,” the directive stated. — PTI

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`Mardaani` tough competition to `Raja Natwarlal`?

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`Mardaani` tough competition to `Raja Natwarlal`?

Posted on 31 August 2014 by GGS News

New Delhi, 31 Aug : Bollywood’s serial kisser Emraan Hashmi’s entertainer ‘Raja Natwarlal’ is in the theaters. From doing rigorous movie promotions on every platform to dancing on a masala peppy song like ‘Flip your collar back’ Emraan tried his best to create a buzz around his film.

But according to the box office report the film has done average business. A report in Koimoi states that the film managed to get Rs.5.5 to Rs.6 crores approximately.

The film starring Pakistani actress Humaima Malick released on Friday on the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi and that may have worked against the film’s box office collections.

The opening day collection of “Raja Natwarlal” is the seventh highest in the actor’s career. Hashmi’s “Raaz 3” remains the top-grosser with Rs.10.47 crore, followed by “The Dirty Picture” (Rs.9.54 crore) and “Jannat” (Rs.8.52 crore), according to Bollywood Hungama.

 

Also Rani Mukerji’s Mardaani is giving tough competition. On its second Friday, “Mardaani” minted around Rs.1.7 crore, taking its eight-day total to Rs.24.6 crore.

Let’s see if Emraan and Humaima’s chemistry can bring movie-lovers to the nearest cinema halls.

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Ten killed, 34 injured in Rajasthan bus accident

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Ten killed, 34 injured in Rajasthan bus accident

Posted on 31 August 2014 by GGS News

JODHPUR, 31 Aug : Ten pilgrims were killed and 34 others injured, 16 of them seriously, when a bus carrying them collided head-on with a truck in Pali district today.

The bus carrying pilgrims from different villages of Udaipur was returning from the shrine of Baba Ramdeo near Pokhran when the mishap took place, district magistrate (Pali) Rohit Gupta said.

“When the bus was passing through Manida village on the Pali-Udaipur bypass at about 6am, it collided with a truck coming from the opposite direction”, said Gupta.

The accident took place apparently as the driver of one of the vehiles dozed off at the wheel, an official said.

While six passengers died on the spot, four others died on way to the hospital.

“We have rushed 16 passengers, who were seriously injured, to Jodhpur and others have been admitted to the Bangar Hospital in Pali itself,” Gupta said.

The Pali administration has announced an ex-gratia relief of Rs 50,000 each for the next of the kin of the deceased from the chief minister’s relief fund.

The bus was carrying about 45 passengers.

While the driver of the truck was missing after the accident, the bus driver was killed in the accident. — PTI

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2 killed, 450 injured in police crackdown on protesters in Pak

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2 killed, 450 injured in police crackdown on protesters in Pak

Posted on 31 August 2014 by GGS News

ISLAMABAD, 31 Aug : Mounting pressure on embattled Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, opposition leader Imran Khan on Sunday vowed to fight till death and asked Pakistanis to rebel against the illegal regime after two persons were killed and about 450 others injured in police crackdown on protesters.

“I request all the nation, civil servants, bureaucrats and police to rebel against this illegal government,” Mr. Khan told his supporters.

The cricketer-turned-politician asked officials to ignore all illegal orders from the PMN-L party-led government.

“I am prepared to die fighting for the freedom for my people,” he said, adding, “allah ya azaadi ya maut (either freedom or death)“.

His comments came hours after police baton—charged hundreds of anti—government protesters led by Khan and Canada—based fiery cleric Tahir—ul—Qadri who marched towards Sharif’s residence in the high—security ‘Red Zone’ here demanding his resignation.

The clashes started after Pakistan Tehrik—e—Insaf (PTI) chairman Khan and Pakistan Awami Tehrik (PAT) chief Qadri ordered their supporters to shift the protest venue in the front of the residence of Prime Minister Sharif to force him to quit.

Police fired tear gas shells and rubber bullets to disperse the protesters outside the prime minister’s official residence and the adjacent parliament building.

Hundreds of protesters entered the lawn of parliament but they were pushed back at the main entrance of the building where army was deployed.

About 450 injured were brought to Polyclinic and Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences, the two premier state—run hospitals, a government official said.

A police official said over 70 policemen and five Frontier Constabulary personnel were injured in clashes with protesters armed with sticks, catapults and stones.

Mr. Qadri’s PAT in is twitter account claimed that seven of its supporters were killed in police action, but figures could not be verified officially.

Mr. Khan said on Saturday that government could use force against protesters as they were not prepared for it.

“We are ready now. Government cannot function,” he said, adding, “We will remain here until we take resignations from Nawaz Sharif and Shahbaz Sharif,” he said.

He said his party would file a FIR against Sharif and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Khan for killing people.

Mr. Khan defended the protests saying that they were marching peacefully.

“Nawaz Sharif is a fascist and does not believe in democracy…In democracy, peaceful protest is our right,” he said, adding, “Those who say we shouldn’t have done this do not know the difference between freedom and slavery”.

 

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Assembly polls to be delinked; Maharashtra, Haryana dates may be in October

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Assembly polls to be delinked; Maharashtra, Haryana dates may be in October

Posted on 31 August 2014 by GGS News

NEW DELHI, 31 Aug : The coming Assembly elections in four states are being delinked, with Maharashtra and Haryana likely to go to the polls first in the third week of October. The other two states — Jammu and Kashmir and Jharkhand — may witness elections in late December-early January.

The Election Commission is working on the schedules and may announce the programme for Maharashtra and Haryana by the middle of September, highly placed sources said. Hectic discussions are on between the Commission and the Union Home Ministry on assessing the requirement of forces and their allocation.

Sensitive and hyper-sensitive constituencies are being identified so that adequate forces can be deployed to ensure free and fair polls without violence. The tenure of the 288-member Maharashtra Assembly comes to an end on November 8, while that of the 90-member Haryana House will end on October 27.

The sources said the schedule is being worked so that it would not clash with the current 10-day Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations in Maharashtra and the subsequent Navratri and Dussehra celebrations that end on October 3. They said the Commission hopes to complete the polls in the two states before Diwali which falls on October 24.

The sources said the attempt was to see that the fortnight-long campaign period does not fall in the period of religious celebrations. The elections are being delinked because of the requirement of paramilitary forces, which is more in the case of Jharkhand, which faces Maoist insurgency, and Jammu and Kashmir that has been dealing with militancy problem for long.

In the last elections, Jammu and Kashmir witnessed a seven-phased polling, while in Jharkhand it was spread over five phases. The revision of rolls in Jammu and Kashmir is currently on and is expected to be over by the first week of October.

The cut-off date for eligibility in Jammu and Kashmir will be October 1, 2014. The electoral rolls in Jammu and Kashmir have a special provision for four cut-off dates for revision — January 1, April 1, July 1 and October 1.

The election schedule in Maharashtra and Haryana is being planned in such a way that electioneering is avoided during festive seasons. Attempts to invoke religion could also be checked by this, the sources said. The Commission also wants to see that the period between the announcement of the election and completion of the process is not unduly long so that governance process is not affected.

Along with the announcement of the schedule, the EC normally puts in place the Model Code of Conduct that puts fetters on governments undertaking new schemes and projects and also taking policy decisions during the election period. — PTI

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