NEWS IN BRIEF – APR 26, 2012

1. Pawar asks Sonia for consensus candidate, Lalu Pitches For Ansari As Next Prez: New Delhi: The Congress on Wednesday started consultations over the presidential elections, with agriculture minister and NCP boss Sharad Pawar telling Sonia Gandhi that UPA’s nominee for the post should be someone around whom consensus can be crafted. [TOI p9]

2. Prez poll race keeps top leaders busy : New Delhi : With Presidential

poll round the corner, meetings between different stakeholders – key

political leaders and possible candidates – is gaining momentum. All big

parties are yet to indicate their preferences but informal meetings and trips

to power centres have already begun.[HT p11]

3. India gets a bad appraisal: S&P revises outlook to ‘negative’, Sensex,

Re Slide; Borrowing Abroad Set To Get Costlier: New Delhi: Global

ratings agency Standard & Poor’s on Wednesday revised the outlook on

India’s long term sovereign rating to ‘negative’ from ‘stable’ — a thumbs

down that could adversely affect the way foreign investors view India.

S&P’s decision questions the India story by citing its sliding growth

numbers. It also cites the high fiscal deficit, a growing debt burden and the

government’s inability to push through economic reforms. [TOI p1]

4. Maoists to free MLA as he agrees to quit: Bhubaneswar: Opening a

new chapter in abduction demands, Maoists in Odisha said on

Wednesday they would free ruling Biju Janata Dal MLA Jhina Hikaka on

Thursday since he had agreed to their demand to quit from the assembly.

This is in addition to the demand for release of Maoists from state jails.

[TOI p1]

5. PM asked Zardari to curb terror : krishna : New Delhi : India on

Wednesday said that diplomatic channels would be used to make

“substantive preparations” for a visit by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh

to Pakistan. This is a reiteration of New Delhi’s position that Singh will visit

Islamabad only if it yields a substantive outcome.[IE p3]

6. Govt policy paralysis led to S&P downgrading : Jaitley : New Delhi :

Taking serious note of S&P downgrading India’s credit ratings, Leader of

Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley on Wednesday held the policy

paralysis within the UPA, differences between the Government and the

Congress, lack of decision-making powers with Prime Minister and

arrogance of ruling coalition responsible of the current state of the Indian

economy.[Pioneer Daily p5]

7. Tejinder moves SC for CBI probe against Army Chief : New Delhi :