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News Highlights
PM Modi to address the nation at 6 pm today            India is at forefront of vaccine development for coronavirus says PM            COVID-19 recovery rate in country reaches 88.63 %            Today is last date for filing of nominations for final phase of Bihar assembly elections            Nitin Gadkari lays foundation stone of first-ever multi-modal logistic park in Assam           

Text Bulletins Details


Morning News

0830 HRS
17.10.2020

THE HEADLINES:

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi assures all help to Karnataka and Maharashtra to deal with situation arising out of heavy rains.

  • NEET UG results for admission to undergraduate medical courses declared.

  • Active COVID-19 cases in the country drop below 8 lakh mark for the first time in one and a half months.

  • India's foreign exchange reserves touch all time high of 551.505 billion dollars.

  • Navaratra festival marking worship of Goddess Durga begins today across the country.

  • And in IPL cricket, Mumbai Indians thrash kolkata Knight Riders by 8 wickets in Abu Dhabi.

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As the nation fights the COVID-19 pandemic, we begin with a note of precaution to stay safe and stay protected by following these three simple steps:

  • Wear face mask.

  • Maintain Do Gaz Ki Doori for social distancing.

  • Focus on hand and face hygiene. 

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to Chief Ministers of Karnataka and Maharashtra over the situation created in their states due to heavy rain and flooding. Mr Modi assured the two states of all possible support from the Centre in rescue and relief work. In a tweet, the Prime Minister said he spoke to Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray regarding the situation arising due to flooding and heavy rain in parts of the state. My thoughts and prayers are with those sisters and brothers affected. He reiterated Centre’s support in the ongoing rescue and relief work.


In another tweet, Mr Modi said he spoke to Karnataka CM BS Yediyurappa on the rainfall and flooding situation in various parts of the state. The Prime Minister said, we stand in solidarity with our sisters and brothers of Karnataka affected by the floods. Mr Modi said he assured all possible support from the Centre in rescue and relief works that are underway.

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Western Maharashtra, Marathwada, especially Pune, Solapur, Osmanabad, Latur and Sangli districts have been hit by torrential rains. The floods triggered due to these torrential rains have killed 28 people and damaged around 2,319 houses in the state in the last two days, while crops on an area of 57,354 hectares were also damaged.


"The heavy downpour in parts Maharashtra has receded now, but has claimed 28 lives and also caused severe damage to various standing crops. Hundreds of acres of crops were submerged after the water breached from a lake at Matkunki in Sangli district. The Bhima river has been flooded in temple town of Pandharpur for the first time in 13 years, because of which 8,000 people have been evacuated and shifted to safer places. Several long distance trains have either been diverted or cancelled following the heavy rainfall. Madhuri Pange, AIR News, Mumbai."

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Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa has tweeted that the Prime Minister has assured of all Central assistance at the time of natural calamity caused by rain in Karnataka. The tweet also says that details regarding relief and rescue measures undertaken by the state were informed to the Prime Minister. Speaking to media persons later, the Chief Minister said that Central assistance from disaster management fund for the losses incurred during the previous rains is expected soon. Thousand of people have been displaced due to unrelenting heavy rainfall in seven districts, Belagavi, Bidar, Vijayapura, Bagalkote, Kaluburagi, Raichuru and Yadgir.


"The seven districts in the state are facing an onslaught of rain havoc since several days. Kalaburugi is the worst-hit district with 4,782 people lodged in relief camps. According to the Karnataka State Disaster Management Authority 2,712 houses are partially damaged and 318 have been completely battered.  Officials have set up 54 relief camps that currently houses7,776 people. According to the preliminary reports agricultural crop are damaged  over 1,04,418 hectares and horticultural crop losses on 3,481 hectares. Karnataka Chief Minister B.S.Yeddiyurappa  held a review meeting with the concerned districts' Deputy Commissioners yesterday and directed them to take immediate relief and rescue operations. R.MURTHY, AIR NEWS BENGALURU."

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that the governments commitment to protect the Minimum Support Price (MSP) and government procurement of crops are the essential components of Food Security. He was taking part in a programme on the occasion of World Food Day.


On this occasion, Prime Minister released a commemorative coin of 75-rupee denomination to mark the 75th Anniversary of Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) yesterday. He hailed the role of FAO in ensuring food security across the globe.


The Prime Minister also dedicated 17 recently developed biofortified varieties of eight crops to the nation. He said, farmers in the country are an important pillar in the government's endeavour towards food revolution. He stressed that the farmers have played a significant role in maintaining a robust food supply chain in the country even during the tough times of Corona virus pandemic. The Prime Minister added, the government initiated a multi-dimensional approach to address the issue of malnutrition in the country. 

The Prime Minister said, even when the world was reeling under the corona pandemic, the government reached out to the people in the country and ensured availability of nutritious food to over 80 crore people.

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National Testing Agency has declared the result of National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) UG 2020. The score cards are available on the official website of the exam - ntaneet.nic.in. Candidates can download their score card and check merit list through the official website. NEET was conducted on 13th September and 14th October amid strict precautions in view of the COVID-19 pandemic for admission to the undergraduate medical courses in all medical institutions including those governed under any other law.


"A total of 7 lakh 71 thousand 500 candidates have qualified the NEET  exam this year for which over 13 lakh 66 thousand candidates had appeared.  Soyeb Aftab from Odisha has scored 720 marks to emerge as the topper of NEET exam while Akanksha Singh, from Delhi also scored 720 marks but bagged the second position.The admissions to MBBS course in All India Institute of Medical Sciences and Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry, will also be made through NEET. Anand Kumar , AIR News, Delhi".

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Ministry of Health has said that India has scaled an unprecedented peak as active Covid-19 cases dropped below the 8 lakh mark for the first time in one an half months. In a tweet, the Ministry said that this significant achievement is the outcome of Centre-led targetted strategies leading to high number of recoveries  and steadily falling number of fatalities.

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The Minister of Science and  Technology, Dr. Harsh Vardhan chaired a meeting on COVID Appropriate Behaviour with Heads and Directors of Autonomous Institutions of Department of Science and Technology and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research yesterday. Dr Vardhan applauded the great work carried out by all scientists, even beyond their mandates, and said that  there are 9 vaccine candidates in the world which are in advanced stages.  He said, in India, three vaccine candidates are developing well with one of them in the advanced Stage-3 Clinical trials and two others in stage-2 trials.  He expressed the hope that India will soon have indigenous production of Corona vaccine. He stated that the next two and half months are going to be very crucial for us in our fight against corona because of the winter season and the festival season.


Urging people across the country to follow the clarion call of the Prime Minister as part of the ‘Jan Andolan’ launched on the 8th of this month, the Union Minister appealed to the people to follow COVID appropriate behaviour.

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The Centre has deputed high-level teams to Kerala, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal in view of surge in the number of new COVID-19 cases in these states in recent days. Each team comprises of a Joint Secretary, one public health expert to look after the public health aspects and one clinician to look after infection prevention practices and clinical management protocol being followed by the State. Union Health Ministry said, the teams will support the state efforts towards strengthening containment, surveillance, testing, infection prevention and control measures, and efficient clinical management of the positive cases.

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A total of three thousand 428 new confirmed cases of Corona virus infection were reported in Delhi during the last 24 hours taking the total number of cases to over three lakh 24 thousand. Delhi Government said that over two lakh 95 thousand people affected with Corona virus have been cured so far. In the last 24 hours, three  thousand 197 people recovered and 22 deaths were reported in the National Capital taking the toll to five thousand 946.


Presently, the total number of active cases in the national capital is 22 thousand 814 hrs.

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Gujarat has recorded 1191 new Corona cases during the last 24 hours. The recovery rate has reached up to 88.36 per cent. A total of 1 lakh 39 thousand 149 patients have  recovered from Covid-19 till now. 1279 patients recovered during the last 24 hours. More than 52 lakh 69 thousand tests have been carried out in the state till date. Maximum 268 new cases are  reported from Surat, while Ahmedabad recorded 189 new cases. At present total active cases in the state are 14705, out of which 92 patients are on ventilator. 11 patients died yesterday taking the total deaths due to Covid-19 up to 3620.

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Tamil Nadu continues to witness a dip in the active Covid-19 caseload, which now remains below 41 thousand. The new infection in the last 24-hours has also come down marginally to 4389. The recoveries have outpaced the infections as 5245 patients were discharged yesterday. Meanwhile, the state government is making efforts to revive the tourism industry in the state that remains highly affected by the pandemic situation.


"One of the sectors that was hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic is the tourism industry. Tourism in Tamil Nadu has all along been a segment with great dynamism. It has topped the list of states attracting the maximum tourist footfalls continuously for five years since 2014. Last year also, 49.49 crore domestic and 68.66 lakh foreign tourists are said to have visited the state for seeing places of attractions, business visits and for medical treatments. However, the Covid-19 pandemic reversed the trend in the state, reflecting the global experiences. The state tourism department says it is working on strategies for the industry to survive in the short term, revive in the medium term and thrive in the long term. The State Minister for tourism Vellamandi Natarajan had a virtual interaction with the Union Minister for Tourism and Culture Prahlad Singh Patel yesterday. In it, he placed his demands for funds for the development of several iconic places in the state. Jayasingh, AIR News, Chennai".

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Dr Piyush Ranjan, Department of Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences has stressed the need for the relaxation techniques to get rid of the fear of Covid-19. Talking to AIR, he advised people to seek help from psychologists in serious matters. 

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India's foreign exchange reserves have jumped by 5.867  billion dollars to touch a new high of 551.505 billion dollars in the week ended 9th October. Foreign currency assets, a major part of the overall reserves, surged by 5.737 billion dollars to 508.783 billion dollars. The gold reserves rose by 113 million dollars in the reporting week to reach 36.598 billion dollars. The country’s special drawing rights with the International Monetary Fund rose marginally by 4 million dollars to 1.480 billion dollars, while reserve position with the IMF also went up by 13 million dollars to 4.644 billion dollars.

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Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman participated in 102nd meeting of the World Bank Development Committee Plenary through video conference. In her intervention at this session, Mrs. Sitharaman said that COVID -19 Pandemic continues to impact the developing and developed countries till date and the hard fought gains in reducing the level of poverty, achieved over a number of years, are at risk of being lost. She said, the Government of India has taken several measures to contain the spread of pandemic, and also to mitigate its social and economic impact. Mrs Sitharaman shared that the Government has announced first stimulus of 23 billion dollar to provide direct cash transfers and food security measures to poor. She also mentioned that Government has committed 2.03 Billion dollar for strengthening of health infrastructure in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic.

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The Reserve Bank of India will conduct its first-ever Open Market Operation (OMO) purchase of State Development Loans (SDLs) on 22nd of October. The OMOs worth ten thousand crore rupees will be conducted as a special case during the current financial year with an aim to improve liquidity and facilitate efficient pricing. The size of the auctions may be enhanced subsequently, depending on the market response. The RBI will purchase the SDLs through a multi-security auction using the multiple price method. The result of the auction will be announced on the same day.

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The festival of Navratra, which marks the worship of Goddess Durga, begins today. On the first day of Navaratri, Devi Durga is worshiped as Shailaputri.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi has extended greetings on the auspicious occasion of Navratri. In a tweet, Mr Modi hoped that Maa Jagadamba will bring happiness, peace and prosperity to all.


The Prime Minister bowed to Maa Shailputri on the first day of Navratri. He said, with her blessings, may our planet be safe, healthy and prosperous. He said, May her blessings give us strength to bring a positive change in the lives of the poor and downtrodden.

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In Jammu and Kashmir, Navratra which marks the worship of Goddess Durga, began today with religious fervour and gaiety. Devotees are thronging to temples to offer their prayers. On the first day of Navratri, Devi Durga is worshipped as Shailputri.


During the 9 day festival of Navratri, the 9 manifestations of Goddess durga are worshipped and each manifestation exemplifies a distinctive virtue. To know about the celebration of the Navratra in Jammu & Kashmir, let's listen to our Srinagar Correspondent:


"In the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, devotees are visiting Katra Vaishno Devi, Durga Nath temple Srinagar and Kheer Bhawani temple at Tulmulla village in Ganderbal district of Kashmir valley from early this morning to offer their prayers to the Goddess Durga on the occasion of first Navratra.The devotees are adhering to all the required SOPs and advisories issued by the administration while paying their obeisance to the Deity. They pray to the Goddess Durga to provide a solace to the whole mankind by putting an end to the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic that has claimed lakhs of lives throughout the globe. Meanwhile,  Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha has greeted the people on the auspicious occasion of Sharad Navratri. In his message, he has prayed for a better future and prosperity of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and well-being of its people. This is Sunil Koul for AIR News from Srinagar."

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The renowned Sabarimala temple in Kerala will be opening for devotees from today after six-month long break. After the break, devotees will throng the famous Lord Ayyappa temple, Sabarimala from today onwards. The temple doors opened for the rituals in the Malayalam month of Thulam whereas the pilgrims will be allowed only from today. It is for the first time the temple is reopening for devotees amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

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Railway Board has reviewed security, crowd management and other arrangements in covid times as footfalls increase at railway stations during festival season. Ministry of Railways has  said, to face the challenges posed by increased footfall effectively, Railway Board Chairman, senior members and DG RPF interacted with officers of the field formation at zonal and divisional levels through a video conference. 


"The Ministry has asked the concerned officers to launch intensive awareness campaign among the travelling passengers regarding the guidelines issued by Railway administration to prevent the spread of corona virus in railway stations and trains. They were also asked to strictly enforce the COVID protocol.  The Ministry said, to provide better safety and security to lady passengers travelling by trains, a new initiative Meri Saheli was launched. This initiative is aimed at  instilling  a sense of security among the lady passengers and responding  effectively to any security related issue faced by them. Ministry of Railways has also decided  to run  208 pairs of Festival Special Trains  to clear the festive rush. These Special Festival Services will be operated between 20th of this month and 30th of next month.With DipenDra, Anand Kumar, AIR News Delhi".

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The Labour Ministry has dismissed reports in a section of the media appearing under the caption Government Employees set to get more DA. The Ministry said, the Labour Bureau will release new series of Consumer Price Index for industrial workers with 2016 as base year on 21st of this month. This index is used for revision of dearness allowance payable to government employees and workers in the organized sector. The Ministry said it had never stated that the new index would lead to a hike in salaries of industrial workers and government employees. It will depend on the behaviour of new series which is too early to predict at this stage.

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French President Emmanuel Macron denounced what he called an Islamist terrorist attack against a history teacher decapitated in a Paris suburb on Friday, and urged the nation to stand united against extremism. The teacher had discussed caricatures of Islam’s Prophet Muhammad with his class, authorities said. The suspected attacker was shot to death by police after Friday’s beheading.

French anti-terrorism prosecutor opened an investigation concerning murder with a suspected terrorist motive.

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Ace Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth crashed out of the Denmark Open 2020 badminton tournament after a 22-20 13-21 16-21 defeat to Chou Tien Chen of Chinese Taipei in the men's singles quarterfinals in Odense, Denmark last night.


World No-2 Taipei Player came back after losing the first game and took the next two to win the match in one hour and two minutes and storm into the semifinals.


With it, the challenge of the Indians in the Denmark Open came to an end. Compatriots Lakshya Sen bowed out in the second round while Ajay Jayaram and Subhankar Dey exited early in the first round.

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In IPL Cricket, Mumbai Indians (MI) beat Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by 8 wickets at Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi last night. Quinton de Kock's undefeated knock of 74 runs 44 off balls helped Mumbai Indians to have a successful chase against Kolkata Knight Riders.


After winning the toss Kolkata Knight Riders elected to bat first. With a slow start they could garner only 148 runs for 5 wickets in the stipulated 20 overs.


 Mumbai Indians achieved the target of 149 runs losing only 2 wickets in 16.5 overs.

Today, Rajasthan Royals take on Royal Challengers Bangalore in Dubai, while Delhi Capitals will face Chennai Super Kings at Sharjah.

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Take a look at the weather forecast for today.


The  temperature in the National Capital Delhi will hover between 16 and 34 degree Celsius. It will have Mainly Clear sky.

In Mumbai, there will be generally cloudy sky with Light rain. The minimum temperature was 25 degree Celsius and the maximum will be around 32 degrees.


Chennai will have generally cloudy sky with Light Rain or Drizzle. The temperature will hover between 26 and 34 degree Celsius.


Kolkata will witness partly cloudy sky with possibility of moderate rain or Thunderstorm. The minimum and the maximum temperature in the metropolis will be 27 degrees and 36 degree Celsius.


On to the North, in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the minimum temperature was 17 degree Celsius in Jammu while the maximum will be around 34 degrees. The city will have mainly clear sky.


Srinagar and Ladakh will have mainly clear sky. The temperature in Srinagar will hover between five and 26 degree Celsius. In Ladakh, the minimum temperature was minus three degree Celsius and the maximum will be around 20 degrees.


Gilgit will experience mainly clear sky becoming partly cloudy towards afternoon or evening. The temperature will hover between eight and 24 degree Celsius.


In Muzafarrabad, there will be mainly clear sky. The minimum temperature was 10 and the maximum 33 degree Celsius.

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NEWSPAPERS HEADLINE:

  • Supreme Court ex-judge to check stubble burning curbs across 3 states, headlines The Asian Age.  Justice Lokur, students to save NCR, writes The Hindu.

  • Business Standard quotes a WHO study that reveals that Remdesivir has little effect on Covid-19 mortality. Remdesivir not effective, headlines The Tribune.

  • The Times of India reports that India's covid cases saw the sharpest 15-day decline of 18%, in the first half of October.

  • "GST gap: Rs. 2.16 lakh crore will be available to states unconditionally, says FM" is the headline in The Hindu Business Line.  States' GST gap to be fully bridged, says FM, writes Financial Express.

  • And finally, according to a study quoted in The Pioneer, Indians' lifespan rises to 70.8 years in 2019 from 59.6 years in 1990.

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