DD/AIR News

  • Speaking on the occasion, Union Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said, Krishi Megh is a step forward towards digital agriculture of New India. He said, Government of India and World Bank have funded National Agricultural Higher Education Project. The project is designed for strengthening the national agricultural education system in the country with the overall objective to provide more relevant and high-quality education to the agricultural university students. The Minister also stressed on enabling private investments in agriculture.

  • The decision has been taken during the DAC meeting chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in New Delhi to strengthen the Armed Forces by relying on indigenous capability to take forward the initiative on Atmanirbhar Bharat. With HAL having successfully developed Basic Trainer Aircraft (HTT-40) Prototypes and certification process underway, the DAC approved procurement of  Basic Trainer Aircraft from HAL to address the basic training requirements of the Indian Air Force. Post Certification 70 Basic Trainer Aircraft will be initially procured from HAL and balance 36 after operationalisation of HTT-40 fleet in IAF. The DAC also approved procurement of an upgraded version of Super Rapid Gun Mount (SRGM) which is fitted as the main gun onboard Navy and Indian Coast Guard  warships from BHEL to improve the fire power of Indian Navy. The upgraded version of SRGM has enhanced capability to perform against fast manoeuvring targets like missiles and Fast Attack Crafts and increase the maximum engagement range. Besides, the Council cleared  procurement of 125 mm Armour Piercing Fin Stabilized Discarding Sabot (APFSDS) ammunition for Indian Army as a Design and Development Case. The ammunition being procured will have a 70 per cent indigenous content. The DAC also gave approvals that are likely to speed up the procurement of AK 203 and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle upgrades.

  • Ending a four decade long wait of veterans, Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led NDA government announced the 'One Rank One Pension' scheme for ex-servicemen. Government's guideline that women should be considered for command roles and that all women officers are entitled to permanent commission is a major boost to empower women. In a major boost to the armed forces, the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) on Tuesday approved the procurement of defence equipment for an approximate cost of  over Rs. 8,722 crore, including 106 basic trainer aircraft for the Indian Air Force (IAF). The step will strengthen the armed forces by relying on indigenous capability to take forward the initiative on Atmanirbhar Bharat. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh’s recent announcement of a negative import list of 101 defence items as a major step towards self-reliant India is in line with this thinking of making the country self reliant in defence production. Director of Society for Policy Studies, Commodore Uday Bhaskar said, the recent announcement by Ministry of Defence regarding the new policy about enforcing an embargo on 101 inventory is a significant policy decision. Government is giving emphasis on positioning India among the top countries of the world in Defence and Aerospace sectors, from design to production, with the active participation of public and private sector fulfilling the twin objectives of self-reliance and exports.

  • In a statement issued by the Sports Authority of India(SAI) today, it is said that Mandeep Singh is moving from mild to moderate severity of Covid infection and his condition is currently stable.  The remaining five hockey players including the captain Manpreet Singh who are Covid positive are being monitored constantly and their vitals checked four times every day. They are in isolation at National Centre of Excellence in Bengaluru.

  • Addressing the participants, Mr Pokhriyal highlighted about unique architectural beauty of India, its monuments and temples. The Minister said that Council of Architecture should draw inspiration from the present and past treasures of Architecture and bring a paradigm shift in the field of Architecture to make India a world leader again. The Minister said, the architecture of India is rooted in its history, culture and religion.

  • Search action revealed that at the behest of Chinese individuals, more than 40 bank accounts were created in various dummy entities, entering into credits of more than Rs 1,000 Crore over the period. A subsidiary of Chinese company and its related concerns have taken over Rs 100 Crore bogus advances from shell entities for opening businesses of retail showrooms in India. Further, incriminating documents in respect of hawala transactions and laundering of money with active involvement of bank employees and Chartered accountants has been found as a result of search action. Evidences of foreign hawala transactions involving Hongkong and US dollars have also been unearthed. Further investigations are under progress.

  • The scheduled oversight mechanism meeting is being termed as part of regular interaction between the two countries to review ongoing bilateral economic and development projects which meet periodically, the sources said. The Indian Ambassador in Kathmandu Vinay Mohan Kwatra will head the Indian side while Nepal’s Foreign Secretary Shanker Das Bairagi will be leading the Nepali team during the talks which will be on 17th of August.   The Nepal-India Oversight Mechanism was set up after the State Visit to India by then Prime Minister of Nepal Pushp Kamal Dahal in September 2016.  The idea was to regularly oversee the implementation of bilateral developmental projects and ensure their timely complementation. This will be the eighth such meeting in the last 4 years since the mechanism was established. The dialogue is also being seen as an attempt to break the ice by both sides following the recent boundary tiff. Nepal has recently revised its map showing some of the traditionally held Indian Territory under its own. In a cautious reaction to this spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs, Anurag  Shrivastava had said that India’s position on this issue is clear. “This artificial enlargement of claims is not based on historical facts or evidence and is not tenable. It is also violative of our current understanding to hold talks on outstanding boundary issues," he stated. Earlier on 20th May, the Nepali government had released a revised map that included parts of Indian Territory along the borders in Uttrakhand. India refused to accept the map and the external affairs ministry released a statement saying "such artificial enlargement of territorial claims will not be accepted by India". Terming the hurriedly made Nepali map an infringement in India’s sovereignty the ministry stated that “we urge the Government of Nepal to refrain from such unjustified cartographic assertion and respect India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. We hope that the Nepalese leadership will create a positive atmosphere for diplomatic dialogue to resolve the outstanding boundary issues." India and Nepal have several bilateral institutional dialogue mechanisms, including the India-Nepal Joint Commission co-chaired by External Affairs Minister of India and Foreign Minister of Nepal. The Fifth Joint Commission Meeting was held in August last year in Kathmandu. The most recent highest political level talk between Indian and Nepal was on 10 April this year when a telephone Conversation happened between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Nepali counterpart K P Sharma Oli. Over the talk, the two leaders shared views on the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and the challenges it poses to the health and safety of citizens of both countries and the region. They discussed the steps taken in their respective countries to tackle the pandemic. During the conversation, PM Modi had reiterated India’s commitment for ensuring all possible support and assistance for Nepal's efforts in fighting this global pandemic. The Seventh Meeting of Nepal-India Oversight Mechanism was held in Kathmandu in July Last year. The meeting had reviewed the status of implementation of all ongoing bilateral projects between Nepal and India in the areas of cross-border rails, petroleum pipelines, roads, integrated check posts, bridges, energy, irrigation, inundation, agriculture, post-earthquake reconstruction, among others.    - Abhishek Jha 

  • The festival is somewhat muted this year due to the outbreak of Corona pandemic in the country. All the religious rituals and programs are being held inside the temples with health guidelines in place.  The Bangladesh Puja Udjapan Parishad had decided not to hold any processions and rallies on Janmashtami  in view of the ongoing  Corona crisis in the country. The Ramkrishna Math and Mission held Gita recitation and Bhajan singing in Dhaka. Prasad distribution and delivery of sermons was also organised. At the Dhakeshwari temple in the capital, a Gita Yajna was held to mark the occasion. In Chattogram, the three day Janmashtami festival started without the traditional grand procession called ‘Moha-shovajatra’, reports the official news agency BSS.  In other cities and towns of Bangladesh like Tangail, Gaibandha among others the festival was celebrated with prayers, distribution of prasad and sermons, reports media.  The day is marked as a public holiday in Bangladesh. However, some places like the ISKCON temple in Dhaka will observe Janmashtami on Wednesday. President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina greeted the Hindu community on the occasion of the Janmashtami festival. The Secretary General of the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir also greeted the Hindu community on this occasion. 

  • The Ministry said with more patients recuperating and being discharged from hospitals and home isolation, the total recoveries have jumped to 15,83,489 with 47,746 patients getting discharged in a span of 24 hours. The national recovery rate has risen to 69.80 per cent, according to the Union Health Ministry. The actual case load of the active cases (6,39,929) which is only 28.21 per cent of the total positive cases. With a consistent and sustained increase in recoveries, the gap between recovered patients and active COVID-19 cases has reached nearly 9.5 lakh and the gap between percentage of recoveries and percentage of active cases of COVID-19 is growing every day. Focus on improved and effective clinical treatment in hospitals, use of non-invasive, improved and coordinated services of the ambulances for ferrying patients for prompt and timely treatment have resulted in seamless efficient patient management of COVID-19 patients. As a result, the case fatality rate (CFR), which  has been low as compared to the global average, has fallen below 2 per cent  and currently stands at 1.99 per cent. India's COVID-19 caseload rose to 22,68,675 with 53,601 new infections being reported in a day, while the death-toll climbed to 45,257 with 871 people succumbing to the disease in a span of 24 hours.

  • The 70-year-old poet was undergoing treatment at Sri Aurobindo Institute of Medical Sciences in Indore. Rahat Indori had been admitted to the hospital yesterday after he tested positive for the COVID-19. In the morning, the lyricist-poet tweeted about his confirmed COVID-19 report and said he will keep everyone d through social media. With a 50-year career in poetry, Indori was known for the lyrics of hit films like Munnabhai MBBS, Kareeb, Ghatak and Ishq. Indori did his schooling from Nutan School in Indore and his graduation from Islamia Karimia College, Indore. He passed his MA exam in Urdu literature from Barkatullah University, Bhopal in 1975 and was awarded a PhD in Urdu literature from the Bhoj University in 1985. Rahat Sahab had faced poverty in his childhood, so in his words people could see the truth of life.

  • He said one of his daughters has already been inoculated. As the number of coronavirus cases continues to rise at an alarming rate across the globe, scientists and medical experts are making accelerated efforts to develop a vaccine fit for human use. Currently, there are more than 160 vaccine candidates in different stages of production and 27 of these have reached the human trials. While the vaccine created by Oxford University and drugmaker AstraZeneca is considered one of the frontrunners in the race to develop a coronavirus vaccine, Russia to day became the first country in the world to launch its very own coronavirus vaccine. Russia currently has two COVID-19 vaccine candidates in the race. Russia will reportedly begin producing the vaccine soon and already has plans for a massive, country-wide vaccine drive. 

  • Speaking at the Webinar on the topic of India-Bangladesh partnership-economic revival in a post COVID19 world on Tuesday High Commissioner of India in Bangladesh Riva Ganguly Das said that Atma-Nirbhar Bharat or self reliance will allow India to identify and promote industries and sectors where it has the potential and capability to scale up and become globally competitive. She said it will help India to become part of the global value chain in collaboration with partner countries. Speaking about the recent connectivity initiatives in railways and inland waterways between India and Bangladesh Riva Ganguly Das said that it will help reduce the cost of trade. She added that the resilient economies and robust business environment in both the countries will not only help them to deal with present challenges but also allow them to make use of new opportunities. High Commissioner Riva Ganguly Das also called upon the business leaders to explore opportunities for collaboration and joint ventures between the two countries. President of the India-Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (IBCCI) Abdul Matlub Ahmed emphasized on the need for more investments, capacity building and knowledge sharing in the South Asian region to build a robust trade network, said the Press Release issued by the High Commission of India. The webinar was organised by the High Commission of India in Dhaka in collaboration with India-Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (IBCCI) on Tuesday.  Industry leaders from several business groups including Iffad Group, Tata Motors, SBI Bangladesh, Indofil, and Shorthi Enterprises participated in the webinar.

  • Due to its huge support from the people AROGYA SETU becomes the the most downloaded Covid-19 contact tracing app across the world. The government-promoted app has managed to achieve the feat in above three months from launch. A Sensor Tower report shows Aarogya Setu has the most installs to date followed by Turkey’s Pandemic Isolation Tracking Project and Germany’s Corona-Warn-App. The download numbers comprise figures from Google Play Store and the App Store.  

  • The following is the full text of the message:  I convey my warm greetings and good wishes to the people of our country on the auspicious occasion of Janmashtami. Janmashtami celebrates the birth of Lord Krishna who is worshipped as the eighth incarnation of Lord Vishnu.  The tales of the infant Krishna stealing butter, playing with his friends and teasing fellow villagers and those of his heroic acts of saving Gokula from torrential rains and killing the monstrous snake Kaliya have captivated our collective imaginations since time immemorial. The eternal message of performing our duties with sincerity without attachment to the results, elaborated by Lord Krishna in the ‘Bhagwad Gita’ has been a source of inspiration for the entire humanity. This year as India and the world is fighting a relentless battle against the spread of COVID-19 pandemic, we have been forced to celebrate almost all of our traditional festivals at home. Janmashtami, which is usually celebrated across the country with great fervor and gaiety would have to be celebrated in a modest manner this year, while strictly adhering to the safety protocols of wearing masks, practicing physical distancing and personal hygiene. On this auspicious day, let us all resolve to perform our duties and to seek the path of righteousness. May this festival bring peace, amity, harmony and prosperity in our country. 

  • Led by a record plunge in self-employed workers, there were 220,000 less people employed in the second quarter, the Office for National Statistics said. Separate tax data for July showed that the number of staff on company payrolls had fallen by 730,000 since March, sounding the alarm about a potentially much bigger rise in joblessness. Mounting job losses are expected as Britain winds down its job retention scheme which protects employees. It is due to close at the end of October. “The cracks evident in the latest batch of labour market data are likely to soon turn into a chasm,” said a senior economist. British finance minister Rishi Sunak said the figures showed the government’s support programmes were working but job losses were inevitable. The unemployment rate unexpectedly held at 3.9% but that reflected an increase in people who had given up looking for work and who were therefore not considered to be unemployed, and people who said they were in work but were getting no pay. The number of self-employed people fell by a record amount in the three months to June, led by older workers, while the number of employees rose - something the ONS said was partly accounted for by workers reclassifying themselves as employed. Pay fell by the most in more than 10 years in the April-June period, down 1.2%, reflecting how workers on the job retention scheme receive 80% of their pay. Excluding bonuses, pay fell for the first time since records began in 2001. However, there was a small increase in job vacancies in the three months to July.

  • Israeli media reported that more than 30 fires were set around border communities by balloons carrying incendiary devices launched from Gaza. “Kerem Shalom Crossing will be closed for the passage of all goods, with the exception of the entry of essential humanitarian equipment and fuel,” Israel’s Defence Ministry said in a statement. Kerem Shalom is one of three main Gaza border crossings with Israel and Egypt, but it is where most goods pass through daily. Palestinian officials said the closure in particular affected construction materials. Gaza is run by Hamas, an Islamist group that Israel and the West designate a terrorist organization. Citing security concerns, Israel maintains tight control over its land and sea borders. Egypt also restricts movement in and out of Gaza.

  • Suspended from the ceiling of the medieval Cathedral of Saint Michael and Saint Gudula by thin wires, the paper creations have come from as far afield as Hong Kong, New York and Tokyo, after Belgian designer Charles Kaisin asked people to send in home-made birds, or deposit them in boxes in 160 shops around Brussels. Each bird was matched by a donation from companies including French energy firm Engie, raising 101,625 euros ($119,744) for two units for COVID-19 patients at the Erasmus hospital in Brussels. Kaisin also organised an art auction which raised a further 300,000 euros ($353,000)for the hospital, which he said would support its medical research, including into the side effects of potential COVID-19 treatments.

  • Surging water of Gandak and Kosi spread out in fresh areas after the river continues flowing at above danger mark in their courses. Over 75 lakh people of 16 districts spread over 1,240 Panchayats are reeling under the impact of flood. The flood situation is particularly serious in Darbhanga, Muzaffarpur and Saran district. Flood water has entered into houses in urban areas of Darbhanga and Muzaffarpur.   In all, 24 people lost their lives and 66 animals were killed in flood related accidents during the last 24 hours. Most of the people in affected areas were rendered homeless. Life in affected areas has been crippled as flood-hit people are forced to take shelter either on the embankments, national highways or other higher places. Thirty three teams of NDRF and SDRF are carrying out relief and rescue operations in affected areas. Over five lakh people have been evacuated so far. One lakh 20 thousand affected people have taken shelter in relief camps.   1,239 community kitchens have been set up for providing food to affected people. About ten lakh people are taking food through these kitchens. The State Government has provided financial assistance of rupees six thousand to each of  family of over six lakh 35 thousand families.   Bagmati, Burhi Gandak, Kosi, Ganga and Adhwara group of rivers are flowing above danger mark. The Met Department has forecast mild to moderate rains in catchment areas of various rivers in north Bihar as well as Nepal in the next 24 hours.

  • British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said he wants to work with the French to stop the illegal crossings. “What he’s looking at, quite rightly, is greater flexibility... in returning people who have come here illegally... and need to be returned back to France,” junior health minister Edward Argar said. 

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