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News Highlights
Rajnath Singh assures farmers MSP will not only stay but will continuously be increased in coming years            Election commission committed to conduct safe & secure elections in Bihar says CEC Sunil Arora            Country's COVID-19 recovery rate improves to more than 83 %            Hundreds of Journalists, Human Right defenders systematically killed in Pakistan each year: India at UNHRC            IPL: Kings XI Punjab win toss; elect to field against Mumbai Indians           

Text Bulletins Details


Midday News

1400 HRS
14.08.2020
THE HEADLINES:
  • President Ram Nath Kovind to address the Nation on the eve of 74th Independence Day today.
  • Country registers record high testing of more than eight lakh samples for Covid-19 for the second consecutive day; Recovery rate improves to over 71 per cent.
  • Rajasthan Assembly Session begins, Ashok Gehlot-led government moves vote of confidence.
  • Supreme Court holds advocate Prashant Bhushan guilty of contempt for derogatory tweets against judiciary.
  • United Nations Secretary General welcomes diplomatic ties between Israel and the United Arab Emirates.
  • And, Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju launches the Fit India Freedom Run.

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President Ram Nath Kovind will address the nation on the eve of the 74th Independence Day this evening. The address will be broadcast from 7 pm onwards on the entire national network of All India Radio and telecast over all channels of Doordarshan in Hindi followed by the English version. All India Radio will broadcast regional language versions of the President's Address from 9.30 PM on its respective regional networks. Broadcast of the address in Hindi and English on Doordarshan will be followed by broadcast in regional languages by regional channels of Doordarshan.

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The Nation will celebrate the 74th Independence Day tomorrow. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lead the nation in celebrating the Independence Day at the majestic Red Fort in New Delhi. The Prime Minister will unfurl the National Flag and address the nation from the ramparts of the iconic monument.

Security has been tightened in the National Capital in view of the celebrations. A full dress rehearsal was held at the Red Fort yesterday for the Independence Day celebrations. Our correspondent has filed this report:-

 In view of Covid-19 situation, the Delhi police has requested the invitees to follow guidelines issued by Union Home Ministry and Health Ministry at all times while they are in the function area at Red Fort. Around four thousand security personnel will be deployed for the ceremony and they will stand maintaining social distance. There will be a multi-layer security ring, including NSG snipers, elite SWAT commandos and kite catchers around the monument. Flying of sub-conventional aerial platforms like UAVs, paragliders and hot air balloons in the national capital have been prohibhited till tomorrow due to security reasons. Delhi Police has issued a traffic advisory to ensure safe and smooth vehicular movement across the national capital on Independence Day. Anupam Mishra, AIR News, Delhi.

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  On the occasion of Independence Day, a total of 926 Police personnel have been awarded Medals. Police Medals for Gallantry (PMG) have been awarded to 215 police personnel for their conspicuous gallant action. President’s Police Medals for Distinguished Service has been awarded to 80 police personnel and Police Medal for Meritorious Service to 631 police personnel. 

Among the majority of the 215 Gallantry Awards, 123 personnel are being awarded for their gallant action in Jammu and Kashmir, 29 personnel for their gallant action in Left Wing extremism affected areas and eight personnel for their gallant action in the North-East Region.

Among the personnel receiving Gallantry Awards, 55 are from CRPF, 81 are from Jammu and Kashmir police, 23 are from Uttar Pradesh, 16 are from Delhi Police, 14 are from Maharashtra and  12 are from Jharkhand and the remaining from the other States, Union Territories and Central Armed Police Forces.

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In Assam, security measures have been tightened ahead of the 74th Independence Day celebrations. Strict vigil is being maintained in all the sensitive areas across the state to avoid any untoward incident. Checking of vehicles is also being conducted in Guwahati by security forces.
Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal will hoist the tricolour at Judges' Field in Guwahati tomorrow. Due to COVID-19 pandemic, necessary instruction has already been issued by the State Government to all concerned departments. Various online competitions and events are being organized to mark the Independence Day celebrations.

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Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju today launched the largest country-wide run, the Fit India Freedom Run. The event is being organized to mark the 74th Independence Day of India on 15th of August to 151st Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi on 2nd of October.
The government has decided to encourage participants of the event to run at their own pace - anywhere and at any time of their convenience, keeping in view the current pandemic situation and social distancing norms. Additionally, they can break-up their runs over several days in this period. The total kilometres clocked can be tracked using a Global Positioning System, GPS watch or manually.
The event is targeted to encourage fitness among the masses while following COVID-19 protocols. This is yet another endeavour to strengthen the Fit India Movement envisaged by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and involve citizens to embrace fitness as a way of life. Individuals and organizations can register for the event on the Fit India website.
The motto of the ‘Freedom Run’ is to encourage fitness and help citizens to get freedom from obesity, laziness, stress, anxiety and other diseases. In the recent past as well, Fit India has organized numerous big scale events such as Fit India Plog Run and Fit India Cyclothon to take the message of fitness to the masses.

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Total recoveries from COVID-19 in the country today inched closer to touch the two million mark. A total of 17 lakh 51 thousand 555 people have recovered in the country so far. Fifty five thousand 573 recoveries were reported during the last 24 hours. With this, the recovery rate improved to 71.17 per cent in the country. The case fatality rate stands at 1.95 per cent.
The Health Ministry said, 64 thousand 553 new cases of COVID-19 have been registered in the country in the last 24 hours taking the total number of cases to 24 lakh 61 thousand 191. Presently, the total number of active cases in the country is six lakh 61 thousand 595. In a single day, one thousand seven deaths were also reported taking the toll to 48 thousand 40.

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India registered a record high testing of more than eight lakh COVID-19 samples consecutively for the second day. The Health Ministry said, India recorded its highest COVID testing figure of eight lakh 48 thousand 728 samples during the last 24 hours. It said, the remarkable feat has been achieved by rigorously following the 'Test, Track and Treat' strategy and the country is geared up to reach the testing capacity of 10 lakh tests per day.
The Health Ministry said the strong resolve and determination of the Union Government along with the States and Union Territories to follow aggressive testing as the first important step in the early detection and isolation of COVID-19 cases has resulted in rapidly increasing the number of tests done per day. The week-wise average daily tests conducted has witnessed a sharp increase from around 2.3 lakh in the first week of July 2020 to around seven lakh in the current week.
The cumulative testing done so far in the country now stands at two crore 76 lakhs 94 thousand 416 tests. The Tests done per million of the population in the country has also seen a sharp increase to reach nearly 20 thousand.
The Government said the strong determinant of this milestone has been a sustained expansion of testing labs across the country. From merely one lab in January this year, the country today has one thousand 451 labs. Out of these, 958 are government labs while the remaining 493 are private labs.

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Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan today inaugurated a Mega Blood Donation Camp dedicated to Corona Warriors at All India Institute Of Medical Sciences, AIIMS in New Delhi. On the occasion, the Minister felicitated Corona Warriors and family members of the Corona Warriors who lost their lives during the fight against COVID-19. Dr Harsh Vardhan also presented certificates to the blood donors.
Later speaking to media, he said people and COVID Warriors have fought strongly against COVID-19 pandemic and will win soon.

Dr Harsh Vardhan said there has been no such day in previous months when the recovery rate of a day is not better than its previous day and fatality rate of a day is not less than its previous day.
Director of AIIMS Dr Randeep Guleria was also present at the event.

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In Mizoram, eight more positive cases for Corona virus were found in the last 24 hours while 13 patients recovered from the infection yesterday. With this, the total number of COVID-19 cases in the state has reached 657.
According to the official statement, 343 patients have been discharged after recovery so far and presently 314 patients are receiving treatment.

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In view of the increasing COVID-19 cases, the Himachal Pradesh Government is exploring the possibilities of home isolation system for asymptomatic COVID-19 patients who have adequate facilities at their residence. The State Government is laying emphasis on contact tracing of COVID-19 patients to check further infection. Chief Minister Jairam Thakur has directed the Deputy Commissioners to evolve a mechanism to keep asymptomatic persons who are willing to remain in home isolation if they have adequate space at residence to isolate them from other family members.

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Odisha has recorded a daily spike of around 2,000 COVID-19 positive cases since the last two days. Yesterday, 1,977 people tested positive for the virus, taking the total count to 54,630.  With 10 more COVID-19 deaths during the last 24 hours, the total death count in the state has shot up to 324.  While 37,900 people have recovered from the infection, the number of active cases stand at 16,353.
In terms of virus spread,  the sustained surge in COVID-19 caseload continues to be a grey area for the state. The silver lining however lies in the significant slump in positivity rate, which has dropped from around 10 per cent as on the 1st of this month down to below five per cent. The State Government, in keeping with the centre's call for more tests, has ramped up testing from around 14,000 at the start of this month to more than 40,000. On the other hand, in order to break the transmission chain of the virus, the State Government has limited the number of people in any Independence Day congregation tomorrow down to 10 only.  Girish Chandra Das AIR News Bhubaneswar.

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  In Madhya Pradesh, the total number of Corona  positive cases has exceeded 42 thousand. So far, 32 thousand people have become healthy, while there are more than nine thousand 500 active cases. A report 

The total number of corona patients in the Madhya Pradesh has exceeded 42 thousand. While there are more than 9 thousand 500 active cases. On the other hand, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan has appealed to the citizens not to hold any kind of public event and congregation in festivals like Ganesh Utsav and Moharram. He has directed the officials not to allow any such events to take place. In a meeting to review Corona virus if idols and tajias  are being made, then they should be immediately stopped. The Chief Minister said that the rate of recovery corona in the state has been 74.7 percent. Paritosh, AIR News, Bhopal

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In Maharashtra, amid growing demand, the State Government today said it will issue notification in next two days to reopen gyms. Besides, the government has decided to enhance financial assistance to construction workers registered with the Maharashtra Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board. More in this report --

Maharashtra Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Vijay Wedditiwar said that the government while issuing the notification to reopen gyms will ask the owners to comply with the guidelines like taking all necessary precautions to prevent transmitting infection. In another development, an additional financial assistance of 3,000  rupees will be provided to the construction workers registered with the Maharashtra Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board. The decision will benefit 10 lakh construction workers in the state and 300 crore  rupees will be spent on this. A separate 70-bed ward has been set up at Amravati District COVID Hospital for the safety of pregnant mothers and babies who tested positive for COVID- 19. District Collector Shailesh Nawal informed that So far, 19 pregnant women who tested positive for COVID -19 have delivered babies in this hospital. Madhuri Pange, AIR News, Mumbai.

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In Telangana, the total number of COVID -19 cases reported so far reached to 88 thousand 396 with 1,921 fresh Corona virus positive cases being reported during the past 24 hours. As per the daily bulletin issued by the State Medical and Health Department this morning, 1,210 more people recovered from COVID-19, taking the recovery rate to 72.7 per cent. With this, the number of people recovered from COVID-19 in the state rose to 64 thousand 284.  Nine more died yesterday due to COVID and other comorbidities taking the total COVID-19 toll to 674.
Meanwhile, the State Government has taken over 50 per cent of beds in Corporate and private hospitals which were allowed to give COVID-19 treatment. Our Correspondent says, the State Government will manage 50 per cent of the beds in these hospitals.

Following many complaints from general public on several aspects including excess charges for COVID treatment, the State Government has taken a serious view of how treatment is being offered at private and corporate hospitals during the pandemic. The government has already banned two hospitals from further treating COVID patients in this regard. However, in a key decision, the State Government has decided to take over 50 per cent of the beds in corporate and private hospitals and now the government will manage admission of covid patients for these beds. The representatives of the private and corporate hospitals have already agreed for it. The charges for treatment relating to these beds will be as per rates decided by the government. The exact modalities for managing these beds are being worked out today. Lakshmi, airnews, Hyderabad.

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In our series 'Expert Speak' on All India Radio, we bring you the views of leading medical experts on COVID-19.
Talking to AIR News, Dr. Amarchand Bajaj, Senior Consultant at the Sitaram Bhartia Institute of Science and Research in New Delhi highlighted the importance of hygiene and how to maintain it to contain Novel Corona virus.

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A key session of the Rajasthan Assembly began today. The house assembled at 11 a.m. and paid tributes to Lalji Tondon, Ajit Jogi and other leaders who recently passed away.
After the obituary remarks, the Speaker adjourned the house till 1 PM Special seating arrangements were made in the house to maintain social distancing in view of the Corona pandemic. Some changes were also made in the seating arrangements of Sachin Pilot and Vishvendra Singh who were sacked from the State Cabinet last month. All the Congress MLAs who were staying in hotel Fairmont could not reach the Assembly on time due to heavy rainfall and traffic congestion. The city roads are flooded due to the incessant rainfall.
The session comes after a month-long political crisis in the state which started with the rebellion by Sachin Pilot and 18 other Congress MLAs.
The motion for vote of confidence was presented a short while ago in the Legislative Assembly on behalf of the State Government, which is being debated in the house.
Legislative Affairs Minister Shanti Dhariwal introduced the motion for vote of confidence in the house. Starting the debate, Mr Dhariwal said today the issue has attracted attention of people of entire state and the country. Speaker Dr C. P. Joshi said the discussion would be concluded within three hours. It is believed that voting will take place on the confidence motion by this evening.

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The Supreme Court today held activist-lawyer Prashant Bhushan guilty of contempt for his two derogatory tweets against the judiciary. A bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra said, it would hear the arguments on quantum of sentence to be awarded to Bhushan on 20th of this month.
Earlier, the apex court had reserved its verdict in the matter after Bhushan had defended his two tweets, saying they were against the judges regarding their conduct in their personal capacity and they did not obstruct administration of justice.

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In the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, two Police personnel martyred as some terrorists fired indiscriminately upon a deployment Police party at Nowgam Bypass area on the outskirts of Srinagar city this morning, ahead of the Independence Day celebrations tomorrow.
Police said that three police personnel sustained injuries and were rushed to hospital in Srinagar, where two among them succumbed to their grievous injuries and attained martyrdom. They included Selection Grade Constable Fayaz Ahmad from Kulgam and Constable Ishfaq Ayoub Khanday from Srinagar.The whole area has been cordoned off by the security forces and massive search operation has been launched to nab the assailants.

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In Gujarat, two over bridges of Ahmedabad city have been named after late Arun Jaitley and Sushma Swaraj. According to Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation sources, the newly built flyover at Income Tax circle will be known as Arun Jaitley flyover, while another flyover at Anjali cross road will be known as Sushma Swaraj Bridge. This was announced by the Chairman of AMC Standing Committee Amul Bhatt.
He said the flyover in Bapunagar area will be known as Maharana Pratap flyover while Hatkeshwar flyover will be known as Chhatrapati Shivaji flyover.

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In the run up to the 74th Independence Day celebrations, we bring you a special story today about the several initiatives for making New India.
The Narendra Modi-led government has taken several initiatives to achieve the goal of making New India. Prime Minister Narenda Modi has given a clarion call to create an India which will be clean, free from corruption, poverty, terrorism, casteism and free from communalism. More from our correspondent --

Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government has always accorded high priority to the agriculture sector and welfare of farmers. The government is implementing Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Scheme under which  an amount of six thousand rupees is provided per year  directly into the bank account of beneficiary farmer families. To achieve the objective of Housing for all by the year 2022, the government has launched  Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana. Under the Skill India Mission, government is providing employement as well as oppurtunities of self -employment to the youth of the country.  Anand Kumar, AIR News, Delhi.

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United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres has welcomed the agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates to establish full diplomatic ties. In a statement, the UN Chief said, the agreement will create an opportunity for Israeli and Palestinian leaders to re-engage in meaningful negotiations that will realize a two State-solution in line with relevant United Nations resolutions, international laws and bilateral agreements. He said, UN will continue to work with all sides to open further possibilities for dialogue, peace and stability.
The Secretary General added that peace in the Middle East was imperative as the region confronts the grave threats of COVID-19 and radicalization.
In a major diplomatic breakthrough, the UAE yesterday became the first Gulf country and the third in the Arab world to establish diplomatic relations with Israel as part of a deal to halt the controversial annexation of parts of the West Bank that Palestinians see as a part of their future state. Close neighbours, Jordan and Egypt, are the only two other Arab states to have diplomatic ties with Israel under peace agreements that have weathered several storms over the decades to hold firm.

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The death toll from last week's massive explosion in Lebanon's capital Beirut has risen to 178. United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, in its report today said, an estimated 6,000 people were injured in the blast and at least 30 were missing. It said, the explosion has affected operations at six hospitals and damaged more than 20 clinics in the the parts of Beirut. The agency further said that 120 schools, used by 50,000 students, have been damaged and more than 1,000 residential units were severely damaged.
A powerful explosion took place at the port of Beirut on 4th of this month. According to the authorities, the explosion was caused by 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate, confiscated by the customs services in 2014 and stored in the port since then.

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In Bangladesh, normal life is resuming slowly as flood situation eases in the country. With most of the rivers showing a declining trend, people of the flood-affected areas in Bangladesh have started returning home gradually. Flood-affected people in Sirajganj, Bogura, Natore, Naogaon and Pabna districts started returning to normal life as the flood situation improved there, reports the official news agency BSS.
According to the latest bulletin of the Flood Forecast and Warning Centre (FFWC) issued at 9 a.m. today, water level showed increasing trend at 28 points. It declined at 68 points across the four major river basins in Bangladesh. Rivers were flowing above the danger level only at three points across the 101 points monitored by the FFWC this morning.

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India Meteorological Department (IMD) has said that large parts of the country are likely to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall during the next two-three days. The IMD said a low pressure area has formed over northwest Bay of Bengal off north Odisha and West Bengal coasts.  There is also a monsoon trough plus a convergence of southwesterly winds with moisture from Arabian Sea is likely to continue during the next two days, which will lead to heavy rains over several parts of the country. 
The IMD said fairly widespread rainfall with heavy to very heavy rainfall at isolated places are very likely over major parts of North India including Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and east Rajasthan during the next two days and decrease thereafter.
It further said, moderate to severe thunderstorm accompanied with lightning is very likely at isolated places over Uttarakhand, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi, east Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh during next 24 hours.
Several parts of western India are also expected to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall. Fairly widespread rainfall with heavy to very heavy falls at isolated places are also expected over Gujarat and parts of central India during next 48 hours. Isolated heavy to very heavy falls are likely over northern parts of Konkan and Goa during next 72 hours.

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In Bihar, the flood situation has worsened following torrential rains in catchment areas of Nepal and heavy discharge of 2 lakh 15 thousand cusec of water from Gandak barrage. The water level of Gandak river is rapidly rising. In view of the deteriorating situation, people living in low lying areas have been advised to shift to higher places.
Over 78 lakh people spread over 16 districts are reeling under the impact of floods. Darbhanga, by far the worst-affected district which accounts for 20 lakh people hit by the floods. Thirty-eight people have lost their lives in flood related incidents in last 24 hours.
Darbhanga- Samastipur rail section of the East Central railway remains suspended for the 22nd day. As many as 33 teams of the NDRF and the SDRF are carrying out relief and rescue operations.

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Very heavy rain lashed several parts of Telangana since yesterday under the influence of a low pressure area in the northwest Bay of Bengal. Very heavy rainfall at few places inundated low-lying areas and snapped communication to few villages. Incessant rains in Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation Ares for the past two days resulted in inundation of roads and disrupted vehicular traffic.

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Now, Let us take a look at today's weather .
Fairly widespread rainfall with heavy to very heavy falls very likely at isolated places over major parts of northwest India including Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and Uttar Pradesh.
Heavy to very heavy rainfall is also likely at isolated places over Gujarat state, Konkan & Goa, ghat areas of Madhya Maharashtra, East Rajasthan and parts of central India during next 24 hours.
In the National capital Delhi minimum temperature was recorded at 26 degrees Celsius while Maximum temperature is expected to be around 33 degrees with generally cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers.
Mumbai will have generally cloudy sky with heavy rain. The minimum temperature was 25 degree Celsius and maximum will be around 30 degrees.
Chennai will have generally cloudy sky with light rain or drizzle and  the minimum temperature was 25 degrees Celsius and maximum is expected at 33 degrees.
Kolkata will have partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers.
On to the North, in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the minimum temperature was 26 degrees Celsius in Jammu while maximum will be around 34 degrees. The city will be partly cloudy sky with possibility of rain or thunderstorm or duststorm.
In Srinagar, mainly clear sky becoming partly cloudy towards afternoon or evening.
Ladakh will have clear sky. The temperature will hover between 18 and 32 degrees Celsius.
In Gilgit, the minimum temperature was 19 degrees Celsius and maximum around 39 degrees with partly cloudy sky.
Muzzafarabad will have thunderstorm with rain.

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