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Last Updated : Aug 14 2020 6:25AM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
PM Modi unveils ‘Honoring the Honest platform for Transparent Taxation            PM calls for faceless & seamless tax system, take care of taxpayer's dignity            Record number of over 8.3 lakh COVID -19 tests conducted in a single day            Rajasthan Assembly session begins tomorrow            Assam govt allows public transport under new guidelines for unlock 3           

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Midday News

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  • President Ram Nath Kovind inaugurates Ashadha Poornima celebrations; Says Buddha’s teaching is woven around love, compassion and non-violence.

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi urges youth to stay connected with the thoughts of Lord Buddha.

  • COVID-19 recovery rate inches close to 61 per cent in the country; Over three lakh 94 thousand people recovered so far.

  • In Jammu and Kashmir, entire Kashmir valley except Bandipora district kept in Red Zone in the fight against COVID-19.

  • More than 500 flights will be operated under Phase Four of Vande Bharat Mission. 

  • Home Minister Amit Shah pays tributes to Swami Vivekananda on his death anniversary; Says, Swami Vivekananda's ideals still inspire the youth to serve the nation.


President Ram Nath Kovind has said that India is proud of being the land of the origin of the Dhamma. He said that people in the country see Buddhism as a fresh expression of the sublime truth and the Budhha's enlightenment and preachings were in line with India’s tradition of respect for intellectual liberalism and spiritual diversity. Inaugurating celebrations organized by International Buddhist Confederation on the occasion of Ashadha Poornima today, Mr Kovind said, it was from India that Buddhism began to spread in neighbouring regions and grew organically in new fertile soils, eventually branching off into various offshoots.

Mr Kovind expressed happiness at hosting the Asadh Purnima celebration in the Rashtrapati Bhavan as part of India's civilizational journey for welfare of the universe since time immemorial. The President called it a momentous occasion unparalleled in the history of humankind. This day is also known as Guru Purnima. Hindus and Jains also celebrate it as a mark of reverence for their spiritual teachers. Mr Kovind said, this day is an unbroken link to India’s eternal pursuit of wisdom without dogma.

Mr Kovind said, Buddha’s teaching was against the current during those times, but the force of his argument was woven around love, compassion and non-violence. He added that the spread of Buddhism around the world was guided by these eternal values. The President said, the ‘Dhamma Chakka’, has been the lodestar, helping spiritual seekers navigate through the maze of worldly life and arrive at the end of suffering.

Mr Kovind observed that the world is in the midst of a virulent pandemic that has overwhelmed the entire humanity. He said, people have to follow certain discipline and maintain physical distance. The President highlighted that in modern times, Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. B. R. Ambedkar found inspiration in the words of the Buddha and went on to shape the destiny of the nation.

Addressing the celebration of Ashadha Poornima, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the world is fighting extra-ordinary challenges today and lasting solutions can come from the ideals of Lord Buddha. He said, they were relevant in the past, they are relevant in the present and they will remain relevant in the future. Mr Modi said, bright young minds are finding solutions to global problems.

Mr Modi said, the government wants to focus on connectivity to Buddhist sites. He added that a few days back the Union Cabinet announced that the Kushinagar airport will be an international airport.

The Prime Minister said, the eight-fold path of Lord Buddha shows the way towards the well-being of many societies and nations. He said, it highlights the importance of compassion and kindness and the teachings of Lord Buddha celebrate simplicity both in thought and action. 


Home Minister Amit Shah today paid tributes to Swami Vivekananda on his death anniversary. In a series of tweets, the Home Minister said, Swami Vivekananda was a saint, a great thinker and an extraordinary speaker, who not only reinforced the spirit of nationalism in India, but also fostered the entire world with the qualities of Indian culture. The Minister said, Swami Vivekananda's ideas of education, universal brotherhood and self-awakening are equally relevant today.

Mr Shah said, he had great faith in the ability and transformational power of the youth. He said, Swami Vivekananda believed that only the youth will give the right direction and power to the development of the nation in the times to come. He further said, Swami Vivekananda's ideals still inspire the youth to serve the nation.


The Union Government today said that a total of three lakh 94 thousand 227 people affected with Corona virus have recovered in the country so far. In the past 24 hours, 14 thousand 335 people  recovered from COVID-19 and with this, the recovery rate reached 60.80 per cent.

The Health and Family Welfare Ministry said, a total of 22 thousand 771 new cases of COVID-19 were reported in the country within last 24 hours taking the total number of cases to six lakh 48 thousand 315. This is the highest spike in fresh cases since the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic in India. In a single day, 442 deaths were reported taking the nationwide toll to 18 thousand 655. Presently, the total number of active Corona cases in the country is two lakh 35 thousand 433.


The Union Health Ministry has issued revised clinical management protocol for COVID-19 patients. The new protocol also contains the details of symptoms and conditions in different stages of treatment. The Ministry has also described the use of investigational therapies- Remdesivir, Convalescent Plasma, Tocilizumab and Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ)  on COVID-19 infected persons. It said, the use of these drugs is subjected to limited availability in the country as of now and currently, these drugs should only be used in a defined sub group of patients. In the protocol, the Ministry has recommended the dosage of the antiviral drug--Remdesivir, being administered to hospitalized COVID-19 patients to five-day treatment course. The Ministry said, remdesivir drug is only for restricted emergency use on patients with moderate disease who are  on oxygen support. The drug can not be administered to a pregnant or lactating mother and children below the age of 12 years. Also, the drug is not recommended to a patient with severe renal impairment.


The News Services Division of All India Radio, in its bilingual live phone-in programme today, will bring you a Special Discussion on COVID-19.

Dr. Raman Gangakhedkar, Former Head Scientist of Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases at the Indian Council of Medical Research will participate in the discussion. Listeners can ask questions to the experts on Toll Free Telephone No: 1800-115767. One can also ask questions on telephone number: 011: 2331-4444 and post queries on our Twitter handle @airnews s by #tag Askair. This can be heard tonight on FM Gold Channel and additional frequencies from 9.30 P.M. onwards. This programme will also be available on our website NEWS ON AIR DOT COM and on our YouTube Channel NEWSONAIROFFICIAL. You can also follow us on the NEWSONAIR app for s.


In our series 'Expert Speak' on All India Radio, we bring you the views of some leading medical experts on COVID-19.

Talking to AIR News, Dr. Uma Kumar, Head of Rheumatology Department, AIIMS suggested to the people to follow social distancing, hand hygiene and cough etiquettes.

President of Public Health Foundation of India, Dr K Srinath Reddy said, India is in a much better position as compared to rest of the world as far as the COVID-19 cases are concerned and the measures taken are yielding results.


Steel Authority of India has achieved the highest ever June month sales during June 2020. The domestic and export sales stood at 12.77 lakh tonnes which is a jump of more than 18 per cent over the corresponding period last year. In June 2020, the company has also recorded the highest ever exports for any month. It exported 3.4 lakh tonnes steel during this period. It also achieved the best ever June dispatches of rails to the Indian Railways in June 2020. Incidentally, for the first time in the country, SAIL flagged off the first rake of R-260 grade Vanadium alloyed high strength 260-metre rails to the Indian Railways, capable of delivering higher speed and bearing higher axle load.

Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel Dharmendra Pradhan congratulated the SAIL collective for achieving the feat and said, the record June sales and exports by SAIL is indicative of the buoyancy and sharp recovery our economy is witnessing.

On the other hand, Rourkela Steel Plant (RSP) has set a national record by clocking 48 blows in a single day in a single converter of Steel Melting Shop-2 (SMS-2) on 2nd July. On the same day, the Steel Plant set another benchmark. Its Hot Metal Torpedo Ladle Number-5 surpassed its previous record of 2,331 lining life. A report from our correspondent:

"Despite Rourkela Steel Plant has been fighting multi-pronged challenges in view of COVID-19, the plant is leaving no stone unturned to achieve the bar in every facet of performance. The feat is possible because of perfect coordination and tremendous contribution by different departments. Deepak Chattaraj, CEO of RSP visited both SMS-II and Ladle Repair Shop and congratulated the collective for the stupendous performance. He emphasized upon the thrust of the company on cost efficiency and expressed hope that achievements like these will help the company achieve the improved cost parameters. Tapan Maharana, AIR NEWS, CUTTACK"

We spoke to Deepak Chaterjee Chief executive officer Rourkela steel plant on achieving this feat.


The Vande Bharat Mission, which entered its Fourth Phase yesterday, is progressing smoothly. More than 500 flights will be operated under Phase Four of this Mission. This includes both Air India and private carriers who are ramping up their operations in a big way. Air India will be conducting 170 flights till 15th of July to and from 17 countries, including Australia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Canada, Germany, Japan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Philippines. A report:-

"Private airlines will have significant participation in the Fourth Phase of Vande Bharat Mission. Over 500 flights will be operated by the private airlines, including Indigo and Go Air. Civil Aviation Ministry said that among others, Indigo will operate 238 flights from Qatar and 219 flights from Kuwait. Go Air will operate 41 flights from Kuwait. Phase Four will particularly focus on countries where there still are a large number of Indians who have registered to return. Meanwhile, a record five lakh stranded Indians have returned safely to India under the Mission till now. The operations commenced on 7th May and in less than two months, nearly five lakh four thousand stranded Indians from 137 countries have returned to their homes. With Bhupendra Singh, Suparna Saikia, AIR News, Delhi."


In Rajasthan, the recovery rate of COVID-19 infected persons has reached about 80 per cent. With 204 persons tested positive today, the total number of infected persons has gone up to 19 thousand 256. Out of which, 15 thousand 352 people have been cured. Our correspondent reports that due to maximum testing and intensive tracing the COVID patients are being recovered fast. More in this report:-

"Taking population in consideration Rajasthan is at the top in COVID investigation. Testing facilities of more than 30 thousand samples daily has been developed. About eight lakh 70 thousand samples have been tested so far. An Audit of Death due to Corona in the state is also been made mandatory and the focus is at ruthless containment. As soon as the Corona patient is detected, immediately the affected area is sealed and sampling in the area begins, due to which the infection does not spread to other areas. The state has also adopted the best practices of other states. The State Government started Operation Liza, under which the elderly and sick people were quarantined in their homes. Jitendra Dwivedi, AIR NEWS, Jaipur."


In Gujarat, Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation, AMC has added 26 new areas of the city in Micro-Containment Zones after detection of new cases. According to official release, two areas falling under Bodakdev and Vatva have been removed from the Micro- Containment zones. More from our Ahmedabad correspondent:- 

"Majority of  26 new areas added in Micro-Containment Zones are falling under north west, south west and west Ahmedabad. Health Department of AMC has launched intense door to door surveillance and mass screening in these areas. COVID-19 test will be carried out of all symptomatic persons found during the surveillance. A tenth standard passed villager of Banaskantha district Bharat Prajapati has developed an automated vending machine for Golgappas. People need to a currency note and select the choice of taste to get readymade Golgappas on a rolling tray. Machine stores 100 golgappas at a time. A small mobile repairer of Raviyana village, Bharat told that this machine helps for maintaining social distancing while selling golgappas. Yogesh Pandya, AIR News, Ahmedabad."


In the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the Chief Secretary B V R Subrahmanyam who is also the Chairman of State Executive Committee has issued a classification of the districts in Jammu and Kashmir. The Entire Kashmir valley except Bandipora has been kept in Red Zone in the fight against Corona virus pandemic.  More from our Srinagar correspondent:-

"In the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the State Executive Committee has classified the districts of Jammu and Kashmir into Red, Orange and Green zones after taking into account the overall assessment of the situation pertaining to the spread of COVID-19 pandemic in Jammu and Kashmir.  According to the order, all the districts in the Kashmir valley except Bandipora have been kept in Red Zone keeping in view of the spike of positive cases in the valley particularly in view of the stranded persons returning to Kashmir from different parts of the country nowadays and in an effort to control further the spread of  Corona infection in the Kashmir valley. This is Sunil Koul, AIR News from Srinagar."


In Odisha, A two-day weekend shutdown in 17 districts has begun from today. The State Government has imposed shutdown in the districts with high cases to flatten the rising COVID-19 curve. A report:-

"To contain the spread of COVID-19, A two-day weekend shutdown has started in Odisha. Earlier the state government had imposed a weekend shut down in 10 districts including Ganjam, Gajapati, Khurda, Cuttack, Jagatsinghpur, Jajpur, Balasore, Mayurbhanj, Keonjhar and Jharsuguda. However, Collectors of seven other districts took the decision to impose the 48-hour shutdown in their respective districts in view of the rising number of COVID cases. The seven districts are Rayagada, Koraput, Kandhamal, Kendrapara, Balangir, Bargarh and Dhenkanal. The police administration has tightened the security to enforce the complete shutdown of non-essential services. While all essential services including healthcare, drinking water, electricity supply, and ATM counters were allowed to remain open during the shutdown. Similarly, home delivery of food by restaurants and distribution of LPG cylinders were permitted. Moreover, Odisha has reported 8,601 COVID cases, while 5,705 patients have recovered and 31 people have died so far . Itishree Singh Rathaur, Air News, Cuttack"


Karnataka will reimpose lockdown on Sunday starting tomorrow in a bid to contain the rise in cases of COVID-19 in the state. A high level meeting convened by Chief Minister B. S. Yediyurappa had decided to introduce the complete lockdown on Sundays. No activity other than essential services and supplies will be allowed tomorrow. More from our Correspondent:-

"All non essential activities will come to a standstill in Karnataka tomorrow. The shops and establishments and public transport will be closed and the public will not be allowed to move around without valid reason. The state has decided to strengthen effective monitoring and surveillance of C ovid cases. In Bengaluru which has witnessed steep spike, the 8800 electoral booth level task force committees will manage the pandemic. Medical Education minister Dr. K Sudhakar has informed that detailed guidelines for home isolation and funeral of dead bodies have been prepared. He also said that 400 ambulances will be deployed in the city, tele-consultation facilities will be made available and legal action will be taken against those violating home quarantine. Sudhindra, AIR News, Bengaluru"


In Mizoram, the State Government has decided to postpone the opening of schools for the current academic session for an indefinite period. As per an earlier announcement by the government, schools were scheduled to open on 15th of this month. The State Education Minister Lalchhandama Ralte said this today. More from our correspondent:-

"The Education Minister Lalchhandama Ralte said that keeping the current situation in view and as a part of measures to contain the spread of COVID-19, the government has decided to postpone the opening of schools until further order. The decision has also been taken to adhere to the guidelines of the Union Home Ministry. The Home Ministry has recently directed all states not to open educational and training institutes till 31st of this month due to the spike of COVID-19 cases in the country. Meanwhile, the Class-12 Board Examinations suspended midway due to the pandemic were conducted successfully. These exams began on 1st of July and concluded yesterday.  About 7,026 students wrote their examinations in Economics, Chemistry, Sociology, Computer Science and Home Science. Subhasis Chanda, AIR News, Aizawl."


In Arunachal Pradesh, 20 new COVID-19 cases were detected yesterday. With this, the total number of COVID cases in the state has gone up to 252. The number of active cases stands at 175, with 75 recovered and one death. All the cases in the state are reported from quarantine facilities and linked to returnees from other states. The positive cases also include couple of health workers engaged in COVID Care Centres. The Arunachal Pradesh Government has made institutional quarantine mandatory for all returnees to the state, where their swab collections are done after three days.


In a strong support to India over the clash with China in Galwan Valley, Japan has said that it opposes any unilateral attempts to change the status quo in the region. Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla had yesterday briefed Japanese Ambassador Satoshi Suzuki over telephone on the situation along the Line of Actual Control.

The Japanese Ambassador Satoshi Suzuki said that Japan hopes for a peaceful resolution of the row through dialogues. He tweeted that Japan appreciates Government of India's policy to pursue peaceful resolution. He said that Japan hopes for peaceful resolution through dialogues and opposes any unilateral attempts to change the status quo.


In Maharashtra, heavy downpour is being witnessed in Mumbai and adjoining Thane, Raigad, Palghar, Sindhudurg, Ratnagiri along with Beed District since last night. Incidents of landslides have been reported from many places. However, no casualties were reported. More in this report:-

"Heavy rains which lashed SIndhudurg district has affected the paddy fields as they have been washed away due to excess water. In Beed district of Marathwada , heavy rains have caused inconvenience to many patients, doctors,nurses and health workers as they were stranded due to water-logging. Apart from this,essential hospital supplies like oxygen cylinders and surgical supplies, too could not be delivered to the hospital. Continuous rainfall in Raigad district since last three days has disrupted the normal life. Three-meter high tides at the sea in Sakhar, Akshi, Khora Port and Dighi Port have caused severe damage. The district administration has issued a warning to the coastal villages as high tides are expected to rise in the sea for the next eight days. Madhuri Pange, AIR News, Mumbai"


Now, Let us take a look at the weather s for today.

The national capital Delhi is expected to have thunderstorm with rain. The minimum temperature was 30 degrees Celsius while the maximum is expected to be around 40 degrees.

Mumbai will have generally cloudy sky with heavy rain. The city witnessed a minimum temperature of 25 degrees Celsius and will have a maximum of 33 degrees.

In Chennai, the temperature will hover between 24 and 37 degrees Celsius. The city will have a generally cloudy sky with light rain or drizzle.

Kolkata will have a partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers with a minimum temperature of 28 degrees Celsius. The maximum temperature will be nearly 34 degrees.

In Jammu and Kashmir; the minimum temperature was 29 degrees Celsius in Jammu while maximum will be around 37 degrees. The city is likely to have generally cloudy sky with moderate rain.

In Srinagar, the temperature will hover between 18 and 32 degrees Celsius. The city will have mainly clear sky.

In Gilgit, the minimum temperature was recorded at 15 degrees Celsius while the maximum will be around 35 degrees and the sky will be mainly clear becoming partly cloudy towards afternoon or evening.

The sky in Muzzafarabad will be mainly clear. The place witnessed a minimum temperature of 23 degrees Celsius while maximum temperature will be around 40 degrees.

Chandigarh will see a generally cloudy sky with possibility of development of thunder or lightning. The minimum temperature was recorded at 30 degrees Celsius and maximum temperature will be around 37 degrees.

Bengaluru is expected to experience temperatures between 21 to 29 degrees Celsius. The city will have a generally cloudy sky with light rain.



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