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Current Affairs - 27 November 2017

General Affairs 

Backlog Of Cases Can't Be Roaring Tiger Before Judiciary, Says Chief Justice Of India
  • Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra today said pending cases cannot be a "roaring tiger" before the judiciary and held that the backlog problem will be tackled if the bar and the bench worked together.

    The CJI asked the bar body and the lawyers to assure him that they would not seek unnecessary adjournments in cases, stressing that it was a way to resolve the backlog problem.

    "Let us promise each other that we shall collectively march ahead to reduce pendency. Pendency cannot be a roaring tiger before us. We will be able to tackle it if we work together," the CJI said while speaking at a function here organised by the Supreme Court Bar Association to celebrate Constitution Day.

    The people, he said, must pledge to defend the dream and vision of the Constitution. "We cannot permit ... anyone and I mean anyone who harbours the notion of denigrating the dignity of the institution at his whims and fancy," he said.

    Speaking on the issue of pending cases, he said rotational benches of the high courts across the country were functioning on Saturdays and were taking up criminal appeals which were around 10 years old.

    "I must tell you in last one and a half months, all the high courts combined have disposed of around 1100 appeals and the credit goes to the judges and the members of the bar. In the Supreme Court in last two months, we have brought down pendency by more than 3,200 cases," he said.

    He said that advocates on record (AoRs) of the apex court should get the privilege to mention a matter for urgent hearing and stressed that the lawyers should come prepared even if they seek early hearing.

    "I have told my colleagues (judges) to come prepared even if the case is listed for early hearing. If the case can be disposed of, we will sit and dispose it off," he said.

    Addressing the gathering, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the government had made 106 appointments in the higher judiciary this year.

    "In the subordinate judiciary, there are about 5,000 vacancies. The Centre has no role in it. Appointments are done by the high courts or public service commissions. We have written to the CJI," he said. Mr Prasad also said fresh talents should join the subordinate judiciary.

    "It is time to induce new blood, new talent in the subordinate judiciary," he said, adding, "We need to collectively work together".

    Attorney General K K Venugopal lamented the delay in justice delivery and said certain cases may take eight years to pass the trial court and the same in high courts and the apex court. "A total of 24 years. Only rich persons can file a case," he said, adding that there was a need for increasing the number of judges.

    "We have only 18 judges for a million people. This is the root cause of delay in justice. The total number of judges needs to be increased," he said.

    Since the government was party to 70 per cent cases, its early disposal would also benefit the government, he said.

Pakistan Not Doing Enough To Control Terrorism On Its Soil, Says Kiren Rijiju
  • Union minister Kiran Rijiju today said India had adopted a "zero-tolerance policy" towards terrorism and lamented that neighbour Pakistan was not doing enough to control the growth of terror on its soil.

    "The government has made it clear on various international platforms that Pakistan is a breeding ground for terrorism," he said at a function in Mumbai to commemorate the supreme sacrifices made by the security personnel during the Mumbai terror attack nine years ago.

    On November 26, 2008, 10 Pakistani terrorists reached Mumbai via the sea route and opened indiscriminate fire, killing 166 people, including 18 security personnel, and injuring several others, besides damaging property worth crores of rupees.

    "India has adopted a zero-tolerance policy towards terrorism. I do not want to go into its details but the outline is clear," Mr Rijiju said.

    Asked about the release of Mumbai terror attack mastermind and Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed, the Union Minister of State for Home said, "It is a matter of concern for us. We have been putting pressure on Pakistan in a bilateral way as well as through multilateral forums."

    Saeed is also the founder of terror outfit Lashkar-eTaiba (LeT). The UN and US designated terrorist, who has a $10 million American bounty on his head, was freed by Pakistan on Friday.

    Mr Rijiju said, "On various international forums, we are making it absolutely clear that Pakistan is a breeding ground for terrorism and it is not doing enough to contain the growth of terrorism on its soil. They must do much more than what they had said."

    Asked about the neighbouring country being reluctant to cooperate in the Pathankot terror attack probe, the BJP leader said, "Our stand is clear and efforts are going on. I cannot disclose certain aspects of the attack or our efforts."

    In January 2016, terrorists had sneaked into an Indian Air Force base in Punjab's Pathankot. The attack had claimed the lives of seven security personnel, while four terrorists were killed. Mr Rijiju said the coastal borders of India were much more secure now.

    "We have taken a series of measures to secure the coastal borders. We have adopted a series of integrated coastal security schemes which are effective," he added.

Vyapam Case: CBI Seeks Action Against More Than 200 Medical Students
  • The future of over 200 students, who took admission in four private medical colleges of Madhya Pradesh through management quota on a hefty payment, might hang in the balance after a CBI probe into a Vyapam case claimed irregularities in their selection, officials said.

    The probe agency had written to the Madhya Pradesh government, seeking necessary action against these candidates, who did not appear in any entrance exam for admission in the medical colleges, they added.

    The move was based on a probe conducted by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the Pre-Medical Test (PMT), conducted by the Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board (Vyapam in Hindi) in 2012, the officials said.

    On Thursday, the agency filed a charge-sheet in a special CBI court in Bhopal against 592 accused, including the chairmen of the four private medical colleges, for their alleged involvement in the recruitment scam.

    The promoters were, J N Choksey, chairman of the L N Medical College; S N Vijaywargiya of the People's Medical College; Ajay Goenka of the Chirayu Medical College (all in Bhopal) and Suresh Singh Bhadoriya of the Index Medical College, Indore, the officials said.

    While three promoters did not comment when contacted by news agency PTI, Bhadoriya claimed that neither his nor his college's name was mentioned in the CBI charge-sheet.

    A total of 229 admissions were made by these four colleges under the management quota, by charging an amount between Rs. 50 lakh and Rs. 1 crore per seat, allegedly in violation of norms, the CBI officials said.

    What was worrying was that the students who got admission through the management quota did not appear in any entrance exam, they added.

    Of the 229 of such admissions, 88 were in the Index Medical College, 54 in the Chirayu Medical College, 46 in the People's Medical College and 41 in the L N Medical College, the officials said.

    These admissions were done allegedly in connivance with the officials of the Vyapam, which has since been renamed as the Professional Examination Board, officials of the medical education department of the Madhya Pradesh government and some middlemen, they added.

    Explaining the modus operandi, the officials said the middlemen followed an "engine-bogey" system for the pairing of candidates.

    Under this arrangement, a bright candidate (who had already taken coaching classes to prepare for the entrance test and was well-versed with the examination pattern) would be allotted a roll number just ahead of a not-so-bright aspirant, so that the latter could cheat from him, they added.

    The bright candidate would act as the "engine" and the other student as the "bogey", the officials said.

    The middlemen charged anything between Rs. 15 and 20 lakh for this pairing, they added.

    Elaborating further, the officials said on the basis of successful selection, the bright students would then take admission only in the four medical colleges named in the charge-sheet, despite their names featuring in the merit list and hence, they being eligible for admission in government institutions.

    These successful candidates, in connivance with the middlemen and office-bearers of private medical colleges, would later withdraw their admission, they said.

    Instead of reporting these vacancies to the state government department concerned, the college authorities would fill these seats through the management quota, charging a hefty amount, the officials said.

    Among those named in the chargesheet, 334 were "engine-bogey" candidates, 155 were the guardians of these candidates, 46 invigilators of the examination, 26 officials of the four private medical colleges, 22 middlemen, four former Vyapam officials and two officers of the department of medical education, Madhya Pradesh, they added.

    The state government officials named in the charge-sheet were S C Tiwari, the then director, and N M Srivastava, the then joint director in the medical education department, the officials said.

    The four former Vyapam officials named in the chargesheet were the then director Pankaj Trivedi, then senior system analyst Nitin Mohindra, then deputy analyst Ajay Kumar Sen and the then programmer C K Mishra, they added.

    In the CBI chargesheet, 245 people have been named as accused for the first time. The others were named in different chargesheets filed earlier by the central probe agency.

    The CBI is looking into the several cases of alleged massive irregularities in various examinations conducted by the Vyapam to select candidates for medical colleges and also for state government jobs.

Follow The Constitution, Spirit Of India's Democracy: PM Modi
  • Citizens and the administration must work in accordance with the Constitution and the message it conveys is that "no one should be harmed in any way", Prime Minister Narendra Modi said today. His statement comes amidst the controversy over the film "Padmavati" and cases of vigilantism.

    Addressing the people on his monthly "Mann Ki Baat" programme, he said, "It is our duty that we abide by our Constitution in letter and spirit. Citizens and administrators alike must move ahead in accordance with the spirit of our Constitution. The message that our Constitution conveys is that no one should be harmed in any way."

    Rajput groups have claimed that the Bollywood movie shows queen Padmavati in bad light and have threatened actor Deepika Padukone and director Sanjay Leela Bhansali. There have also been fresh incidents of people attacking those who were transporting cattle.

    In his address, the Prime Minister made no reference to the incidents and the controversy. He said the Constitution is the spirit of India's democracy. In 1949, on this day, the Constituent Assembly had approved the document which was adopted the next year on January 26.

    He said the members of the Constituent Assembly worked hard for about three years to draft the Constitution. "Can you imagine how hard their task would have been to frame the Constitution of our country which has such big diversities? Now, this is the responsibility of all of us to make a new India in the light of the thinking of the makers of our Constitution," PM Modi said.

    "Equality for all and sensitivity towards all is the unique characteristic of our Constitution. It guarantees fundamental rights to each and every citizen... it protects their fundamental rights and safeguards their interests."

    "It is our duty that we abide by our Constitution in letter and spirit. Citizens and administrators alike must move ahead in accordance with the spirit of our Constitution. The message that our Constitution conveys is that no one should be harmed in any way," he said.

Saudi Arabia Kicks Off Islamic Counter-Terrorism Summit
  • Saudi Arabia gathered officials from 40 Muslim countries on Sunday in the first meeting of an Islamic counter-terrorism alliance, a move Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman declared a "clear signal" to extremism.

    "In past years, terrorism has been functioning in all of our countries... with no coordination" among them, he said in his keynote speech. 

    "This ends today, with this alliance."

    Prince Mohammed said the 40 countries were sending a "clear signal" that they would "work together to support the military, financial, intelligence and political efforts of every member state".

    The summit is the first meeting of defence ministers and other senior officials from the Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition, which officially counts 41 members.

    The alliance was announced in 2015 under the auspices of Prince Mohammed, whose rapid ascent since his appointment as heir to the throne in June has shaken the political scene across the region.

    The alliance groups largely, although not exclusively, Sunni-majority or Sunni-ruled countries.

    It excludes Saudi Arabia's arch-rival, Shiite-dominated Iran, as well as Syria and Iraq, whose leaders have close ties to Tehran. 

    Sunday's meeting coincides with an escalation in tensions between Riyadh and Tehran, particularly over wars in Syria and Yemen and the political structure of multi-confessional Lebanon. 

    Saudi Arabia accuses Iran of supporting armed groups across the Middle East, including Lebanon's Shiite Hezbollah and Yemen's Huthi rebels. 

    The meeting also comes as several military coalitions, with backers including both Iran and key Saudi ally the United States, close in on the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. 

    The alliance meeting in Riyadh brings together Muslim or Muslim-majority nations including Afghanistan, Uganda, Somalia, Mauritania, Lebanon, Libya, Yemen and Turkey. 

    Retired Pakistani general Raheel Sharif has been appointed commander-in-chief. 

    While the alliance officially includes Qatar, which is the target of a six-month boycott led by Saudi Arabia, organisers in Riyadh said no Qatari officials were present at the meeting. 

    Qatar's flag was also absent.

    Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain -- all members of the counter terrorism alliance -- abruptly cut diplomatic and trade ties with Qatar in June, accusing the emirate of being too close to Iran and supporting Islamist extremism.

Business Affairs

CBDT asks I-T to slap higher tax rate on fraudulently revised ITRs
  • The CBDT has asked the taxman to go over with a fine tooth-comb scrutiny cases where a taxpayer has filed a revised income tax return (ITR) post demonetisation and directed them to slap "higher tax rate" in instances where black money is detected.

    The policy-making body of the I-T has issued a two-page instruction/directive to all regional chiefs of the department on November 24, stipulating the way forward while assessing scrutiny cases selected for suspicious financial activity, post note ban.

    "Unaccounted income so assessed in scrutiny assessment is liable to be taxed at a higher rate without any set off losses, expenses etc. under section 115BBE (treatment of tax credits) of the I-T Act," the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) instructions said.

    The instructions, accessed by PTI, also ask the taxman that claim of "enhanced sales (especially by business category of taxpayers) may be compared with the central excise/VAT returns."

    "The idea behind the CBDT directive is that the legal provision of filing a revised or belated ITR is not misused and black income is not shown as white in the aftermath of demonetisation by a taxpayer.

    "The assessing officers will comply with these new directions or guidelines in conducting over 20,000 cases of scrutiny, already selected by the department based on their financial activity post note ban," a senior I-T official explained.

    Issuing a stern warning to assessees trying to misuse the provision of revising I-T returns, the CBDT had earlier said that those drastically altering the forms to revise income will face scrutiny and penal action including prosecution.

    The provision to file a revised return under the income tax law has been stipulated for revising any omission or wrong statement made in the original return of income and not for resorting to make changes in the income initially declared so as to drastically alter the form, substance and quantum of the earlier disclosed income, the CBDT had earlier said.

    Under Section 139(5) of the I-T Act, a revised ITR can only be filed if any person who has filed a return discovers any omission or any wrong statement therein.

    The CBDT has also asked the AOs to check the "genuineness and creditworthiness" of those people to whom the assessee has reported the additional sales in the revised returns, post the note ban of November 8 last year.

    "The source of cash in hands of the person who had made payments to the assessee has to be verified carefully and the past profile of the assessee concerned should be thoroughly analysed," the directives issued on November 24 said.

    The CBDT also directed the taxman to minutely check and stressed that it would be "crucial to examine the trend and business practices of a particular assessee while ascertaining the legitimacy of the transactions disclosed in a belated return, filed post demonetisation."

    In such cases which are already chosen for scrutiny, it said, some instances "might indicate that assessee had filed revised or belated return merely as a cover up to explain the cash deposits in bank accounts."

    The tax department had conducted 900 searches between November 9, 2016, and March this year, leading to seizure of assets worth Rs 900 crore including Rs 636 crore in cash.

    The searches had led to the disclosure of Rs 7,961 crore undisclosed income, official data had said.

    During the same period, the department conducted 8,239 survey operations leading to detection of Rs 6,745 crore of black money.

Decades of neglect taking toll on rail infrastructure, says Ashwani Lohani
  • The accumulated deficit in upkeep of infrastructure due to "decades of neglect" is taking a toll on the Indian Railways, chairman of the Railway Board Ashwani Lohani has said, referring to an accident in Uttar Pradesh on Friday.

    In a Facebook post last night, Lohani, who had rushed to the accident site at Manikpur in Chitrakoot district, said an action plan needs to be put in place to address the problem.

    "The accident at Manikpur is a cause for concern. Huge accumulated deficit in upkeep of infrastructure arising out of decades of neglect is taking its toll. Consolidation has to take priority over growth and an action plan has to emerge very shortly," he wrote.

    He said the country was looking up to the railways to set its house in order but the fact remains that it would take its time and may also extract its price, "a price that would have to be paid either way".

    Four train accidents in less than 12 hours in Uttar Pradesh and Odisha killed seven people and injured at least 11 on November 23-24.

    The accident near Manikpur occurred at 4.18am on Friday when 13 coaches of the Vasco Da Gama-Patna Express, on its way from Goa to Patna, derailed, killing three people, including a six-year-old boy and his father, and injuring nine. Four more were killed and two injured in three other train accidents.

    "That there are no free lunches is a realisation that needs to sink in inside every railway employee, the over 13 lakh of them. Yet, the inherent strength of the system and its constituents is what keeps me going. May god give us the strength to deliver what is expected of us and the entire team to live up to the expectations of the nation," Lohani said.

    Railway Minister Piyush Goyal has ordered an inquiry into the accident. He has made it clear that his priority now is to replace old tracks, rather than lay new ones.

EPFO likely to cut interest rate on PF deposits for 2017-18
  • Retirement fund body EPFO may lower interest rate on provident fund deposits this fiscal compared to 8.65 per cent provided to its 4.5 crore members for 2016-17, a labour ministry official said.

    The Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) is likely to cut interest rate on the grounds that it is directly crediting exchange trade funds (ETF) units into provident fund accounts and lower yields on other investments, particularly bonds.

    "Employees Provident Fund Organisation may cut rate of return on provident fund deposits for 2017-18 due to lower income on bonds and its plan to credit ETF investments directly into the account of subscribers," the senior official said.

    However, the official said the EPFO is still to work out the income projection for the current fiscal, which would become the basis for crediting rate of interest in subscribers account for this fiscal.

    Earlier on Thursday, the EPFO approved an accounting policy for valuation and accounting of equity investments which was prepared in consultancy with IIM Bangalore.

    The policy will enable the body to credit ETFs units into the provident fund account of the subscribers by this fiscal end. Thus every account holders will see their provident fund balance in the form of cash balance and ETF units.

    Though the dividends on ETFs will be credited into the subscribers account but the members would be able to realise the entire rate of return on these equity linked investments at the time of withdrawals.

    The subscribers will also have the option to withdraw money while taking advances from their accounts, either by liquidating ETF units or from cash component.

    The finance ministry has been nudging the labour ministry to align the EPF rate with its small saving schemes like public provident fund.
    In December last year, the EPFO trustees had decided to lower the rate of interest on EPF to 8.65 per cent for 2016-17 from 8.8 per cent provided for 2015-16.

Time for consolidation of reforms initiated in 42 months: Niti Aayog
  • Niti Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar today said the time has come for consolidation of reforms, including GST, bankruptcy code and benami law, initiated by the Modi government in the last 42 months to ensure that the steps deliver the "desired fruits".

    The new initiatives in the next 18 months, Kumar said, should focus on health and education sectors as these two are going to be critical for human resource development.

    "You know Modi government has done far too much in those 42 months, it has taken some very major steps. My view is that time has come for consolidation and making sure that these reform steps which have been taken yield the desired fruits," he told PTI in an interview.

    The Narendra Modi-led NDA government came to power in May 2014 and the next general elections are due in 2019.

    Reform measures such as the Goods and Services Tax (GST), Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Act, the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) and the flagship schemes like Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) are very major initiatives, Kumar said.

    "We should now focus on their successful completion except in social sector where some steps need to be taken" on public health and public education system fronts.

    On criticism that the government has failed to create enough jobs, Kumar said there are a large number of areas which have seen substantial increase in employment opportunities, though they may not be in organised and formal sector.

    "The number of EPFO accounts have increased, the number of National Pension System (NPS) accounts have increased...
    (There is a) significant jump in the number of employees within the services sector, especially in tourism, civil aviation, transport and services sector.

    "Let me say that the lack of employment story, I think, is quite exaggerated," Kumar said.

    When asked whether the Modi government would go populist in its last regular Budget to be presented in February next year, Kumar said the government would do what is right for the country and not with an eye on elections.

    "This government has never believed in any kind of populism, I don't see any populism coming..I think Prime Minister Modi's instructions are going to be very clear, let us do what is right for the country," he asserted.

    On overall macroeconomic environment in the country, the Niti Aayog vice chairman said the rating upgrade by Moody's was clear vindication of the fact that the macroeconomic environment in the country is improving, specially with regards to the investor sentiments.

    "The only slight concern is the continued weakness of the exports sector, which has not taking off as expected," Kumar said, adding that the rise in current account deficit (CAD) up to 2.4 per cent in the first quarter of the current fiscal should not be a cause of worry because of strong foreign currency reserves.

    Asked why private investments are not picking up, he pointed out that most people use only the figure of credit offtake on public sector banks (PSBs) as the proxy for private sector investment.

    "But if you look at credit offtake on private sector banks, it has now risen quite well..Finally also number of initial public offers (IPOs) have been higher than previous year. So if you look at all things taken together, the picture is not at all bad," Kumar observed.

    Rs 15 crore bank deposits made post demonetisation declared benami
    • Cash deposits of Rs 15.39 crore made in a Delhi bank post demonetisation have been held as 'benami' property by a special court even as the depositor and the beneficial owner of the stash are "untraceable".

      The deposits were declared 'benami in the ruling in one of the first adjudication cases of the new anti-black money law.

      The Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government had brought into force the new Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Amendment Act, 2016 from November 1 last year, as part of its multi-pronged strategy to curb illicit wealth.

      The case pertains to one Ramesh Chand Sharma, reportedly a resident of Gali Laltain in Naya Bazar area of old Delhi.

      The Income Tax Department, as part of its drive against black funds post the note ban, had conducted a survey at the Kotak Mahindra Bank branch on K G Marg in December last year and found that Sharma, post demonetisation, deposited Rs 15,93,39,136 cash in old notes of Rs 500 and Rs 100 in the account of three firms, suspected to be fake.

      The taxman found that immediately after the cash deposits were made, "demand drafts were issued to a group of non- descript individuals with a view to alienate the cash."

      The department froze these DDs and attached these funds calling them 'benami'.

      The department subsequently sent the order for confirmation to the Adjudicating Authority of the Act, as per the legal provision of this stringent law.

      The Authority, sometime back, confirmed the I-T order, making it one of the first five cases of adjudication under this new law in the country till now.
      "The material gathered through the survey, search, consequent enquiry clearly leaves no room to doubt that the said amount aggregating to Rs 15.93 crore (approx) in accounts a benami property.The said Ramesh Chand Sharma is the benamidar and the identity of the beneficial owner is not know," an order by the division bench of the Authority, Mukesh Kumar (Chairperson) and Tushar V Shah (Member-Law), said.

      The order, accessed by PTI, said Sharma too has gone "untraceable" since the action was launched against him by the I-T Department.

      It added that Sharma "consistently remained absent in the proceedings before the investigating officer and also before the Authority inspite of several services (summonses) in accordance with law."

      The tax departments' charge sheet filed in the case states field enquiries revealed that Sharma was "holding this benami property (cash deposits) as a benamidar for some persons who are the beneficial owners of the properties and whose identity is not traceable or is fictitious."

      The department also found that Sharma has once filed an Income Tax Return (ITR) declaring income of Rs 3 lakh for the assessment year 2006-07.
      Sharma, as per the I-T charge sheet, never responded to its summonses and his address given in the KYC (know your customer) documents of the bank "resulted in the revelation that no such person ever resided" in the given location of old Delhi.

      "Enquiry by the Inspector revealed that nothing was known about such person in the neighbourhood also," it said.

      "The only possible reason for giving a wrong address could be that there was a pre-planned intention on the part of the account holder (Sharma) to engage in such activities after which he did not want any trace of his to be left behind.

      Apparently, his account was utilised by persons who were either not traceable or fictitious to bring their own unaccounted money in the form of demonetisation currency notes back into the banking channel," the I-T charge sheet, also called prosecution complaint, said.

      It added that no one claimed the money even after the taxman attached it as it was black and the person(s) concerned "decided to remain quiet and forego the amount rather than to reveal themselves to the law."

      "It is apparent that Sharma, a man of meagre means could not have the resources to raise such a huge amount," it said.

      After PM Modi's declaration of the note ban on November 8 last year, the I-T department had warned people against depositing their unaccounted banknotes in accounts maintained by someone else.

      Such an act, it had said, would attract criminal charges under the Benami Act, applicable on both movable and immovable properties.

      The I-T department is the nodal department to enforce the Benami Act in the country.

      The tax department, in a data updated till last month, had said that assets worth Rs 1,833 crore have been attached by it under this stringent new law, for which it issued over 517 notices and made 541 attachments.
      The law provides for a maximum punishment of seven years in jail and a fine.

    General Awareness

    Golden Temple awarded ‘most visited place of the world’ -WBR

    • On 24th November 2017, the Golden Temple has been awarded the ‘most visited place of the world’ by ‘World Book of Records’ (WBR), a London-based organisation that catalogues and verifies world records.

      Golden Temple – most visited place of the world:

      General secretary of WBR India chapter, Surbhi Kaul, and president of WBR Punjab chapter, Randeep Singh Kohli, gave this award to Shriomani Gurdwara Pharbandhak Committee (SGPC) chief secretary Roop Singh and other senior officials at Teja Singh Samundari Hall, Amritsar.Golden Temple awarded 'most visited place of the world' -WBR

      Surbhi Kaul said the WBR organisation gives the award after every three months and the Golden Temple has been conferred this award on the basis of observations made from September 2017 onwards.

      Randeep Singh Kohli said they are planning to give these awards to Durgiana Temple at Amritsar and Attari-Wagah border, which also witnesse a huge footfall.

      The SGPC chief secretary Roop Singh said though the shrine has been hugely popular ever since its foundation, the footfall has increased since the live telecast of gurbani kirtan.

      He said on average more than one lakh devotees visit the shrine every day. He honoured the WBR team with ‘siropas’ and a model of the Golden Temple.

      About Golden Temple:

      The holiest Gurdwara and the most important pilgrimage site of Sikhism
      Location – Amritsar, Punjab
      Construction Completed – 1589

      Also known as – Darbar Sahib, Sri Harmandir Sahib

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