New Delhi: The Defence Ministry on Saturday categorically said that there is no plan to privatise the Ordnance Factory Board and efforts are being made to enhance the functioning of the ammunition manufacturer.”Discussions are continuously being held by a committee of very senior officials of the Defence Ministry with employees federations of OFB and engage with them positively and constructively on all aspects relating to the corporatisation of OFB. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details”It was also clarified that the government is not proposing to privatise OFB and any apprehension in this regard is misplaced,” said Ajay Kumar, Secretary, Defence Production. State-run OFB is a leading producer of ammunition for the defence forces and has over one lakh employees. Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee recently wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, urging him to “stall and reverse the process of corporatisation and privatisation” of ordnance factories. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from ThursdayThe corporatisation of OFB will bring it at par with other Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs), it said. “This is in the interest of OFB as it will provide operational freedom and flexibility to OFB which it presently lacks. Besides, the interests of the workers will be adequately safeguarded in any decision taken on the subject,” the statement said. The committee also pointed out that the government has been trying to strengthen the functioning of OFB, including having taken several steps to modernise the factories, re-skill OFB employees at government cost, enable the development of products and components with indigenous technology, the ministry said on Friday. “The committee urged the employee organisations to recognise government’s efforts to make OFB into a competitive, productive and efficient organisation with higher turnover and enhanced profitability, which would also be in the interest of the employees. Therefore, the committee once again urged the employee organisations to withdraw their proposed strike,” it said. Indian Ordnance Factories is the oldest and largest industrial setup which functions under the Department of Defence Production of the Ministry of Defence.
The Canadian Press VANCOUVER — The Crown is urging jurors to find no reasonable doubt when they decide the fate of a man who confessed to killing a 12-year-old girl in British Columbia in 1978.In closing arguments at the B.C. Supreme Court murder trial of Garry Handlen, Crown counsel Gordon Matei told the jury that an undercover officer did not coerce the man to admit he abducted, sexually assaulted and murdered Monica Jack.Handlen has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder but confessed in 2014 in a videotaped recording heard in court that he grabbed the girl while she was riding her bike near Merritt.Matei told the jury that Handlen expressed relief after his detailed confession, saying he could point to the spot where he abducted Jack, 36 years after he said he forced her into his truck.He said Handlen had no need to continue working for a supposed crime group set up in a RCMP sting operation because he had lots of work as a handyman.Matei said Handlen’s main motivation for confessing to the girl’s murder was to avoid prosecution because he had been told police had evidence against him.