Chennai Buzz: Timing for Diwali crackers | #MeToo response from music sabhas | App cab strike… and more

This Diwali, what does the law say about cracker bursting in your city? How is the #MeToo wave making its impact felt in the city? That and more buzz for you, as the week comes to an end.

One hour in the morning and evening is when you can burst crackers in Chennai

The Supreme court has allowed Tamil Nadu to set its own time period for bursting crackers but with the rider that it cannot exceed two hours a day. The order has come further to the plea by the TN Government to the apex court citing festival practices in the state. Further to this, the state government has notified that crackers shall be allowed between 6 am to 7 am and 7 pm to 8 pm. 

The apex court in response said the state government, if it so desired, could break up the two-hour time period into one hour in the morning and one in the evening.

Earlier, the apex court had set time limits for bursting crackers between 8 pm to 10 pm on Diwali and other festivals with the exception of Christmas and New year.  The state government had invoked Article 25 that protects religious practice.


Source: The New Indian Express | India Today | Citizen Matters

Chennai Sabhas constitute committee to hear sexual harassment complaints

With just one more month for the December music season to commence, the federation of Chennai sabhas have constituted an Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) to hear complaints on sexual harassment from any performing artist. The committee will be headed by a women and will have five members which will be further expanded to included members from the field of dance and drama.

It is to be noted that a few days ago, the Music Academy had debarred seven artists from performing in the coming music season, in the wake of sexual harassment voiced against the musicians.

Now, the federation of sabhas have formed the ICC  as per the guidelines framed by the Supreme Court of India and in accordance with statutes including the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Rederessal) Act, 2013.

Source: The Hindu

Taxi drivers strike in protest against high commission 

Regular commuters of Ola and Uber were in for a shock as the waiting time got longer and the price surged on the very first day of the week, disrupting commutes to work and elsewhere. The one day token protest was organised by various taxi drivers’ unions over irregularities and high commission charged by the cab aggregators.

More than 1500 taxis were off the roads. For every Rs 100 collected from the passengers, the aggregators take Rs 26 as commission from the drivers, which is significantly high compared to what the local agencies charge. However, the aggregators collected only 7% from auto drivers as there were regulations on the fare for autorickshaws. The unions demanded that such norms be fixed for taxis too to avoid such exploitation.

The unions also demanded scraping of share rides as there is no provision under Motor Vehicles Act that allows such rides. The protest ended late in the evening after the transport officials promised an interim solution.

Source: The Times of India

Interim stay on online sale of medicines

The Madras High Court has ordered an interim stay, restraining online sale of medicines till Nov 9th. The directive was issued in response to a plea filed by the Tamil Nadu Chemists & Druggists Association. The association had raised concerns over the quality of the medicines and the sale of unapproved drugs that were putting lives of consumers at risk.

Meanwhile six major online pharma majors appealed to the Madras High Court that the restriction should be imposed only on unauthorised companies. During proceedings, the association responded that in the absence of a regulation for e-pharmacies, companies do not have license to sell medicines online. Prevailing regulation does not allow anyone other than a licensed registered pharmacist to sell medicines and such sale should happen only within the premises of the licensed pharmacy.

The Madras High Court has clarified that the restriction would only apply to companies that sell online without valid licenses, and has directed the centre to file its counter.Further hearing on this has been posted to the second week of November.

Source: DTNExt | Business Standard | ET Health

Chennai’s ICF rolls out India’s first engine-less train

The 16 coach “Train 18” is India’s first engine-less train developed at Chennai’s Integral Coach Factory. Termed as the next-gen Shatabdi, the train was completed in a record 18 months’ time.

The fully air conditioned train is designed in such a way that passengers can have a view of the driver’s cabin. The self-propelled train, fitted with CCTV cameras, would have two executive compartments in the middle with 52 seats each, whereas trailer coaches would have 78 seats each, with a potential to travel up to the speed at 160 kmph.

Train 18 will have zero discharge bio vaccum toilets and a host of other features that are at par with global standards and provide amenities for a great travel experience.

Source: The Hindu | New Indian Express | Financial Express

[Compiled by Sandhya Raju]

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