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Last Updated : Dec 4 2020 10:36PM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
Country will have a COVID19 vaccine in the next few weeks: PM Modi            Covid-19 recovery rate in country improves to 94.20 pct            Polling for the third phase of District Development Council elections concludes            Counting underway for Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation elections            Reserve Bank keeps repo rate unchanged at 4 %           

Text Bulletins Details


Morning News

0830 HRS
28.10.2020

THE HEADLINES:

  • In Bihar, polling begins amidst  elaborate security arrangements for first phase of Assembly Elections.
  • Defence Minister Rajnath Singh says India and US  committed to uphold territorial integrity and sovereignty of all nations.
  • Covid-19 recovery rate improves to 90.62 per cent.
  • In Jammu and Kashmir two terrorists killed in Budgam district.
  • Mumbai Indians to take on Royal Challengers Bangalore in Abu Dhabi today.

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As the nation fights the COVID-19 pandemic, we begin with a message of precaution to stay safe and 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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Polling is underway for the first phase of Bihar Assembly polls, amidst tight security arrangements, in 71 constituencies spread over 16 districts. Voting began at 7 am and it will be held till 6pm.

In the first election being held amid COVID pandemic in the country over 2.14 crore voters will exercise their franchise and decide the political fate of 1,066 candidates. 114 women and 406 independent candidates are in the fray.

Chief Electoral Officer H.R. Srinivasa said, out of 71 constituencies, 35 are in Naxal-affected areas. Polling will be held upto 3 p.m. in four Naxal-affected constituencies of Chainpur, Nabinagar, Kutumba and Rafiganj while in other five Naxal-affected constituencies of Arwal, Kurtha, Jehanabad, Ghosi and Makhdumpur polling will be held upto 5 pm. In the remaining 26 Naxal-affected constituencies, voting will be held upto 4 pm.

Additional Chief Electoral Officer Sanjay Kumar Singh told AIR News that central para military forces have been deployed in Naxal-infested areas to ensure peaceful polling.

Keeping in mind the COVID-19 situation, Election Commission has issued strict guidelines to be followed during the polling. All personnel are directed to wear mask during election-related activities. Thermal screening of all persons is being carried out and sanitizers are available at all locations during polling. All Polling Booths have been sanitized. Only 1,000 voters will exercise their franchise at each booth, instead of 1,500.

In NDA, BJP is contesting on 29 seats, JD(U) on 35 and Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) on six seats in this phase. The Vikas Sheel Insaan Party (VIP) has fielded one candidate.

Among the Grand Alliance partners, RJD is contesting on 42 seats, while Congress has fielded 21 candidates and eight CPI-ML candidates are in the fray. Besides, LJP has fielded 42 candidates while RLSP on 43 and BSP on 27 seats.

This phase is crucial for RJD as the party had won 27 seats in 2015 assembly elections. JD(U) won 18 seats while BJP 13 and Congress 09 seats. 04 others were also elected.

Elections are being held in three phases for the 243-member Bihar assembly polls. Apart from the 71 assembly constituencies that go to polls today, 94 seats will go to polls in the second phase on 3rd of November and 78 seats in the third phase on 7th of November. Counting of Votes will take place on November 10th.

Now we take you live to our correspondent K K Lal.

Q1 Lal, How is the turn out? Are elderly people coming to vote?

Q2 Who are all prominent candidates in this phase?

Thank you, Lal for that .

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has urged voters to exercise their franchise in the first phase of voting in Bihar assembly elections. In a tweet, Mr Modi asked everyone to take all necessary precautions like wearing masks and maintain do gaj ki doori.

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In Karnataka, the election to the four legislative Council seats  is being held today. The polling will be held from 8.00 in the morning to 5.00 pm. All precautionary arrangements are in place to hold the election amid the Covid pandemic. 

The polls are held for the South-East graduates, West Graduates, Northeast teachers and Bangalore teachers constituencies. Forty contestants are in fray and 2,34,718 voters will cast their votes. Counting of votes will be on November 2.

At present the BJP has 27 members in the upper House, which has a total strength of 75 members. The Congress has 29 members, JDS 14 and one is an independent. All the three political parties have fielded their candidates in all four seats. A holiday has been declared only for voters in these regions and polling will be held in 549 polling stations, including auxiliary units. The elections were necessitated after the retirement of  four MLCs. The BJP needs to win all the four seats if it has to pass two of its key bills namely the APMC Amendment bill and Land Reforms Bill in the upper house. Even then the role of the single Independent member will be crucial to see that the bills are through.

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In Madhya Pradesh, the campaigning for the polling on 28 assembly seats of the state is at its peak. The Election Commission is also making every effort to ensure maximum voting along with fair and safe elections. Madhya Pradesh will vote on November 3 while results will be declared on November 10.

"A total of 355 candidates are in the fray in these elections being held in 28 assembly constituencies of 19 districts of Madhya Pradesh. Out of these, there are 22 female candidates while 333 are male. The highest number of 38 candidates is in Mehgaon assembly seat of Bhind district while the lowest number of 3 candidates is in Badnawar assembly seat of Dhar district. Meanwhile, the Election Commission has been keeping eye on every activity of political parties. After issuing notice to the former Chief Minister Kamal Nath on the controversial remark, the Election Commission has now issued notice to BJP candidate Imrati Devi for the same reason. Sanjeev Sharma, AIR News, Bhopal".

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The Chhattisgarh Vidhansabha has passed the Chhattisgarh Agriculture Produce Market Amendment Bill -2020 yesterday.

After a debate, the house passed the bill by the voice vote. State Agriculture minister Ravindra Choubey said seven amendments have been incorporated in the bill and clearly defined deemed mandis enabling the state government to declare private mandis as deemed Mandis. Besides, the bill also provides for setting up electronic trading platforms and introducing other safeguards to ensure that farmers get fair price for their produce.

Speaking on the debate, Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel said the amendment of the Mandi Act was not in conflict with the central farm laws but only protected the interests of state’s farmers. However, opposition BJP termed the bill as a constitutional impropriety as the state is trying to override the central legislation.

After the bill was passed on the first day of the special session, the house was adjourned sine die.

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India and the US yesterday held the 3rd bilateral two plus two Ministerial Dialogue in New Delhi and signed the landmark defence pact, the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement, BECA. The signing of BECA is significant as it allows India to use global geospatial maps of the United States for accuracy of stand-off weapons like cruise and ballistic missiles. From the Indian side, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar led the delegation. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defence Mark Esper led the US delegation. India and US signed five agreements in total.

The Defence Minister said both sides also agreed that upholding the rules based international order, respecting the rule of law and freedom of navigation in the international seas and upholding the territorial integrity and sovereignty of all states are essential. In the press statement after the meeting, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said, signing of BECA is a significant achievement.

"I deeply appreciate your commitment to our bilateral relations. During the meeting today, we have had comprehensive discussions on key aspects of our bilateral and multilateral cooperation. Signing the BECA today, after signing the LEMOA in 2016 and COMCASA in 2018 is a significant achievement in that direction. In today's meeting, we also explored probable capacity building and other joint cooperation activities in third countries including our neighbourhood and beyond".

The Defence Minister said, India and US shared assessment of the security situation across the Indo Pacific.

In his statement, External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar said, the Indo Pacific region was the particular focus of the talks.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the US will stand with India as the country confronts threats to its  sovereignty and liberty.

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The Covid-19 recovered cases in the country have crossed 72 lakhs and the recovery rate now stands at 90.62 per cent. Briefing media in New Delhi Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said, India's cases per million population is among the lowest in the world which stands at 5 thousand 7 hundred 58, while the global average is 5 thousand 5 hundred and four.

Mr Bhushan said, India's deaths per million population is also among the lowest in the World, at 86 deaths per million population. He said, the national recovery rate is continuously increasing and has further grown to 90.62 per cent yesterday.

The Health Secretary stressed that this is a satisfactory sign that within 13 days the recoveries have increased from 60 lakh to 70 lakh and now have crossed 72 lakhs. He said, there is continuous decline in Case Fatality Rate in the country and today CFR stands at 1.50 per cent. Mr Bhushan said, since past five weeks, there is continuous decline in average of daily new deaths reported from COVID-19.

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Signifying a landmark achievement, India has registered continuous decline in the average daily new COVID 19 cases over the past 5 weeks. Health Ministry said this brings into focus the efficacy of the "Test, Track,Trace, Treat, Technology" strategy being effectively implemented by the States and UTs under its guidance.

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In Bihar, COVID-19 recovery rate has improved to 95.25 per cent. This is more than the national average. The number of active cases in the state is continuously declining. Currently 9 thousand 73 patients are undergoing treatment at various hospitals. 1237 patients have recovered in the last 24 hours, while 678 new cases were reported. Over two lakh three  thousand patients have so far recovered from the infection in the state.

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Gujarat recorded 992 new cases during the last 24 hours. The recovery rate has reached 89.84 per cent.

"Gujarat has recorded 1 lakh 69 thousand 73 cases till now. Out of these, 1 lakh 51 thousand 888 patients recovered. 1238 patients recovered during the last 24 hours. More than 58 lakh 45 thousand tests have been carried out in the state till date.  Maximum 225 new cases reported from Surat, while Ahmedabad recorded 170 new cases. At present total active cases in the state are 13,487, out of which 64 patients are on ventilator. Five patients died yesterday taking the total deaths due to Covid-19 up to 3,698. Yogesh Pandya, AIR News, Ahmedabad".

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In Tamil Nadu, the active Covid-19 caseload has dropped to 27,734 on Tuesday, 1,534 less than the previous day tally. The new infections in the last 24-hours have also dipped marginally to 2,522, including 695 in Chennai.

Meanwhile, the Good Samaritan doctor from Surat, who risked his own life in his attempt to save another, was discharged from a hospital in Chennai yesterday, in good health.

"The tale of Dr Sanket Kumar Mehta of Surat is heroic and inspiring. The anaesthetist has been in a hospital there for Covid-19 treatment. When he saw another patient in the ICU who required urgent intubation, the spirit of a selfless doctor in him came to the fore, to the extent of removing his own oxygen cannula to help with the medical procedure for the other. The lack of oxygen supply during the time interval led to severe damage of his own lungs, leading to his airlifting to Chennai and admission in a corporate hospital. The long and specialised critical care including using life support systems, antimicrobial medicines and physiotherapy helped in improving his condition. The latest diagnosis revealed that he has completely recovered, without any lungs transplant, which was initially considered necessary. Jayasingh, AIR News, Chennai".

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In Karnataka 3,691 new Covid-19 cases and 44 deaths were reported yesterday.

"According to  the State health bulletin, 188 fresh Covid-19 cases were reported in Mysuru, 128 in Vijayapura, 123 in Mandya, 122 in Dakshina Kannada, 114 in Hassan and 103 in Shivamogga. The health department said three deaths each took place in Ballari and Dharwad, two each in Uttara Kannada, Mysuru and Kalaburagi. Most of those who died of Coronavirus were above 50 and they had Severe Acute Respiratory Illness or Influenza  like Illness. There were as many as 66,701 tests done yesterday including 52,316  RT-PCR  tests. R.MURTHY, AIR NEWS, BENGALURU".

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that administrative processes have to be transparent, responsible, accountable and answerable to the people for development. Inaugurating three-day long National Conference on Vigilance and Anti-Corruption last evening, on the theme Vigilant India, Prosperous India, Mr Modi said, over the years, India has moved ahead with zero tolerance approach on corruption.  The Prime Minister said, we have to jointly work against corruption with systemic checks, effective audits and capacity building and training. He said, fighting corruption is not the job of a single agency but is a collective responsibility.  

Minister for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions Dr Jitendra Singh also addressed the inaugural session.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi has urged people of the country not to become lenient about precautions related to Corona during the festive season and said, with strict adherence to social distancing we will be able to defeat the deadly virus. He was speaking to the beneficiaries of PM Street Vendor’s Atmanirbhar Nidhi (PM SVANidhi) Scheme in Uttar Pradesh yesterday. Mr Modi said, many government schemes like Jandhan, Ayushman, Ujjwala and PM SVANidhi have helped people of the country to fight the Corona pandemic in a better way and we showed the world that we can face any challenge and turn the situation around. He said that the banks are now reaching the poor in the country and it is the result of the continuous work of the government.

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In Jammu and Kashmir, two terrorists were killed in an encounter that broke out between terrorists and security forces last night, at village Aribagh in Manchowa area of central Kashmir's Budgam district.

According to police, a joint team of security forces launched a cardon and search operation in Aribagh.

As the joint team approached towards the suspected spot, the terrorists fired upon them and security forces retaliated killing two terrorists. The identity of the slain terrorists is being ascertained. Further details are awaited.

Meanwhile, a meeting to review the arrangements for the forthcoming Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi was held. Advisor to Lieutenant Governor, Farooq Khan directed SMC Commissioner for fumigation and sanitization of the Dargah Hazratbal shrine premises after Namaz-e-Isha (Night prayers)  to ensure proper sanitation facilities at the historic Dargah besides Jenab Sahab Soura and Kailiashpora shrines.

"The holy relic (moie-mukadus) of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) would be displayed during all five prayers Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi celebration days and no night long prayers would be held at the Shrine in view of COVID-19 pandemic. Advisor Khan said that extraordinary arrangements and measures are put in place in view of the COVID-19 pandemic in Kashmir valley so that devotees would face least difficulties. He directed Wakaf authorities and shrine management to arrange volunteers to facilitate people so that social distancing would be maintained during prayers. He went inside the shrine, and prayed for peace, progress, prosperity and wellbeing of the people of Jammu and Kashmir. This is Sunil Koul for AIR News from Srinagar".

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The Reserve Bank has asked all lending institutions to credit the interest waiver on loans upto two crore rupees for the six months moratorium period beginning March 1, 2020. The government announced the scheme for grant of ex-gratia payment of difference between compound interest and simple interest for six months to borrowers in specified loan accounts. Under the scheme, the lending institutions have been mandated to grant ex-gratia payment to certain categories of borrowers through crediting the difference between simple interest and compound interest for the period between March 1st- August 31st, 2020.

"In a notification issued yesterday, RBI advised lenders to take necessary action within the stipulated timeline. The government has asked banks to credit the amount to borrowers by 5th of November. As per the scheme, the lending institutions shall credit the difference between compound interest and simple interest with regard to the eligible borrowers in respective accounts for the said period irrespective of whether the borrower availed the moratorium on repayment of loan or not. Post payment, lenders can claim the amount from the central government. The scheme will cover education, housing, automobile  loans, MSME loans, personal loans to professionals, credit card dues, consumer durable loans and consumption loans. Devapriyo Bhattacharjee, AIR News, Mumbai".

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In Indian Premier League Cricket, Sunrisers Hyderabad defeated Delhi Capitals by 88 runs at Dubai last night, keeping their hopes alive for a place in the last four. Put into bat first, Hyderabad posted mammoth score of 219 for two in 20 overs riding on Wriddhiman Saha 87 off 45 and David Warner 66 off 34. Chasing the huge target, Delhi were all out at 131 in 19 overs. 

For Hyderabad, Rashid Khan conceded just seven runs and scalped three wickets.

In today's fixture, Mumbai Indians will take on Royal Challengers Bangalore in Abu Dhabi.

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A team of scientists from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland has confirmed the presence of molecular water on the lunar surface. Scientists said, it could be trapped within natural gases or between debris grains. Latest findings reveal that lunar water is more widespread than previously known, with water molecules trapped within mineral grains on the surface and more water perhaps hidden in ice patches residing in permanent shadows. The researchers used data from the SOFIA airborne observatory.

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Today’s weather forecast

The National Capital Delhi will have misty sky. The minimum temperature was recorded at 16 degree Celsius and maximum will be around 31 degrees.

Mumbai will have partly cloudy sky. The minimum temperature was 24 degree Celsius and the maximum will be around 34 degrees.

In Chennai, there will be generally cloudy sky with light rain. The temperature will hover between 25 and 32 degree Celsius.

Kolkata will have partly cloudy sky. The minimum temperature in the city was 24 degree Celsius while the maximum will be around 32 degrees.

On to the North, in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the minimum temperature was 12 degree Celsius in Jammu while the maximum will be around 31 degrees.

In Srinagar, the sky will be mainly clear sky. The temperature in Srinagar will hover between zero and 21 degree Celsius.

Leh in Ladakh will have mainly clear sky. The minimum temperature was minus four degree Celsius and the maximum will be around 12 degree Celsius.

Gilgit will witness Mainly clear sky becoming partly cloudy towards afternoon or evening with temperature moving from three to 24 degree Celsius.

In Muzafarrabad, lower limit of temperature was 10 degree Celsius while upper limit will be around 28 degrees. The sky will be mainly clear.

Chandigarh will witness mainly clear sky, the minimum temperature was 15 degree Celsius while the maximum will be around 31 degrees.

In Ahmedabad, it will be mainly Clear sky. The temperature will hover between 18 and 36 degree Celsius.

Guwahati witnessed fog and mist early morning. The minimum temperature in the city was 23 degree Celsius while the maximum will be around 31 degrees.

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Newspaper Headlines

  • Most newspapers today lead with the lifting of domicile conditions in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. The Pioneer states, " Now any Indian can buy non-agricultural land in J&K."

  • The Hindustan Times opens up with up the caption ''Will stand by India', "US slams PLA actions, backs India on Ladakh."Tough Stance, Defence Agreement, COVID co-operation, the fruitful outcomes of the 22 ministerial dialogue.

  • With increased legroom for overseas investors, "India's weighting in global indices set for major boost." states the Business Standard.

  • The Coronavirus-induced reverse migration has far-reaching effects. The Asian Age writes, "Firms look at hiring apprentice to offset staff shortage."

  • The US motorcycle maker Harley - Davidson is set to make a comeback in India. " Riding on Hero MotoCorp, majestic Harley set for India comeback" is the headline in The Tribune.

  • With the society showing signs of opening up, The Indian Express has a picture of Mahi Purnea, a transgender, at work manning the ticket counter of Sector 50 Metro Station, which was renamed ''Pride Station' on Tuesday.

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