Sun, 22 November 2020
Hackers try to steal Covid vaccine secrets

Timeline  Refresh

21:04   Hackers try to steal Covid vaccine secrets
State-sponsored hackers from China, Russia, Iran and North Korea are engaged in concerted attempts to steal coronavirus vaccine secrets in what security experts describe as an intellectual property war.

They accuse hostile-state hackers of trying to obtain trial results early and seize sensitive information about drug mass production, at a time when a range of vaccines are close to being approved for the public.

Previously the hackers primary intention was to steal the secrets behind the design of a vaccine, with hundreds of drug companies, research labs and health organisations from around the world targeted at any one time.

The cyber struggle involves western intelligence agencies, including Britains National Cyber Security Centre, who say they are committed to protecting our most critical assets. But they discuss only a fraction of their work in public.

Instead they work behind the scenes with drug companies, research labs and cybersecurity specialists, who are more easily able to describe the everyday hacking attempts in what amounts to a worldwide battle.
20:31   US hopes to begin Covid vaccinations by Dec 11
The United States hopes to begin a sweeping program of Covid vaccinations in early December, the head of the government coronavirus vaccine effort said Sunday.

"Our plan is to be able to ship vaccines to the immunization sites within 24 hours of approval" by the US Food and Drug Administration, Moncef Slaoui told CNN. "So I expect maybe on Day Two of the approval, on the 11th or the 12th of December."

FDA vaccine advisors reportedly will meet December 8 to 10 to discuss approving vaccines which Pfizer and Moderna say are at least 95 percent effective.
20:22   Rahul attacks govt over its handling of COD-19 pandemic, lockdown
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday attacked the Modi government over the handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown, and alleged that it pushed millions into poverty, jeopardised their health and compromised the future of students.
He also tagged a news report on the findings of the Parliamentary Committee on Health and Family Welfare.
"Modi government's unplanned lockdown pushed millions into poverty, jeopardised the health of citizens and compromised the future of students due to digital divide," he alleged on Twitter.
"This is the bitter truth which the Government of India tries to cover up by its blatant lies," he alleged.
In another tweet, he hit out at the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh, citing a news report that said the family of the Hathras rape victim is not safe in the state.
"The constant exploitation of victims at the hands of the government in UP is unbearable. The entire country is demanding answers from the government in the Hathras rape and murder case and is with the victim's family. Another example of hooliganism by those in uniform," he alleged in a tweet in Hindi.

Gandhi has been targeting the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh and the state police for the treatment meted out to the Hathras rape victim and her family. 

-- PTI
20:10   CBI arrests ex-Karnataka Minister Roshan Baig in IMA ponzi scam
Former Congress minister R Roshan  Baig was arrested by the CBI here on Sunday in connection with the multi-crore I-Monetary Advisory ponzi scam, the agency sources said.
Baig, a disqualified MLA of the Congress,  was summoned to the CBI office on Sunday morning and "based on material evidence, he has been arrested," they said.
The former Shivaji Nagar MLA was produced before a court which remanded him to judicial custody, the sources added.
The multi-crore ponzi scheme run by Karnataka-based IMA and its group entities allegedly duped lakhs of people promising higher returns using Islamic ways of investment.

-- PTI
19:30   Climate change must be fought holistically: PM
Climate change must be fought not in silos but in an integrated, comprehensive and holistic way, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said at a G20 event on Sunday and asserted that the entire world can progress faster if there is greater support of technology and finance to developing nations. 
Addressing the G20 side event on 'Safeguarding the Planet', Modi said India is not only meeting its Paris Agreement targets,  but also exceeding them.

"Inspired by our traditional ethos of living in harmony with the environment,  and the commitment of my government, India has adopted low-carbon and climate-resilient development practices," he said.

The entire world can progress faster if there is greater support of technology  and finance to the developing world, Modi said.

"For humanity to prosper, every single individual must prosper. Rather than seeing labour as a factor of production alone, the focus must be on the human dignity of every worker," the prime minister said.

Such an approach would be the best guarantee for safeguarding the planet, Modi said.

-- PTI
18:52   Maha Dy CM says decision on curbs in 10 days
The crowd out on roads during Diwali perhaps thought that presence of large number of people could kill the coronavirus, said Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar while hitting out at those who flouting Covid-19 rules during the festive season that has led to surge in infections. 

He further said that the government will review the situation for the next eight to 10 days and will then take a decision on lockdown.

"During Diwali, huge crowds were witnessed as if people on streets could kill the virus. The situation was same even at the time of Ganesha Chaturthi. Now there are predications that a second wave may hit the state. We are speaking to relevant departments. We'll review the situation for next 8-10 days and then the further decision will be taken about the lockdown," Pawar was quoted as saying.

The deputy CM further said that the government has made a lot of regulations to start schools, which includes methods of sanitisation. The state government has allowed reopening of schools for classes 9 to 12 from Monday depending on the Covid-19 situation in local areas.

Pawar's statement comes at a time when there are speculations that the state may suspend train and flight operations to and from Delhi in view of the rising coronavirus cases in the national capital. Uttar Pradesh and Haryana have already made virus test compulsory for those entering the states from Delhi.
18:26   Tunnel unearthed in J-K
BSF detects a tunnel during patrolling along the international border in Samba district of J&K today. It is being suspected that tunnel was being used for infiltration by terrorists. Senior Officers rush to the spot and start investigations.
18:12   400 coronavirus ICU beds added in Delhi: Jain
Health Minister Satyendar Jain Sunday said over 400 ICU beds have been added for Coronavirus patients in Delhi, which is witnessing a third wave of coronavirus infection, over the past few days. 
He said the number will be increased further in the coming days as these 400 beds are part of a total of 1,650 ICU beds being set up in the city --250 in private hospitals, 650 in Delhi government facilities and 750 in those run by the Centre.

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had recently issued directions in this regard.

A government official said 29 ICU beds were added on Tuesday, 100 on Wednesday, 76 on Thursday and 206 on Saturday, the official said.

The AAP government had on Thursday directed private hospitals to increase the percentage of non-ICU COVID-19 beds from 50 to 60. 

It had also ordered 42 private hospitals to reserve with immediate effect 80 percent of their ICU beds for coronavirus patients.

As the number of deaths due to COVID-19 mounts in the national capital, reports of burial sites running out of space have also emerged. 

Jain said he spoke with municipal corporation officials in this regard. 

-- PTI
18:01   Delhi's air quality 'poor', likely to deteriorate further
Delhi's air quality remained "poor" on Sunday and government agencies said it is likely to deteriorate further due to unfavourable meteorological conditions.
The city's 24-hour average AQI was 274 on Sunday It was 251 on Saturday, 296 on Friday, 283 on Thursday and 211 on Wednesday.

An AQI between zero and 50 is considered "good", 51 and 100 "satisfactory", 101 and 200 "moderate", 201 and 300 "poor", 301 and 400 "very poor", and 401 and 500 "severe".

The central government's Air Quality Early Warning System for Delhi said Delhi-NCR's air quality is likely to deteriorate to the "very poor" category on Monday due to unfavourable meteorological conditions.

The predominant surface wind direction was northwesterly and the maximum wind speed 12 kmph on Sunday, it said, adding that the wind speed is likely to drop to eight kmph on Monday.

The central agency said the AQI is likely to deteriorate to the upper end of the "very poor" category between Tuesday and Friday.

As many as 649 farm fire counts were observed over Punjab, Haryana and adjoining regions on Saturday, according to the Ministry of Earth Sciences' air quality monitor, SAFAR.

Stubble burning accounted for 12 per cent of Delhi's PM2.5 pollution on Sunday. It was 13 per cent on Saturday, 15 per cent on Friday, 20 per cent on Thursday and eight per cent on Wednesday.

The minimum temperature settled at 6.9 degrees Celsius on Sunday, the lowest in the month of November in 17 years, according to IMD.
-- PTI
17:38   Priyanka Gandhi accuses Centre of making false claims on MSP
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi on Sunday accused the Central government of making false claims regarding the increase in the Minimum Support Prices. She alleged that reports from several BJP ruled states say that the Centre has kept MSP below the cost of production.

"Official reports from BJP-ruled states say that the central government has kept MSP below the cost of production. While BJP was introducing the 'black law', BJP had claimed that they will increase the MSP. However, the ground reality of Uttar Pradesh reveals the truth about the central government," the Congress tweeted in Hindi. 

Farmers have been protesting against the three recently passed farm laws, have said that they will reach Delhi through five highways connecting the national capital on November 26 as part of their 'Delhi Chalo' march call.

Priyanka Gandhi has been attacking the Narendra Modi government, saying that the Centre is helping industrialists through these laws.

Amid the ongoing protest in Punjab and other states, the Centre has defended the farm laws, saying these have been brought to benefit farmers.

-- ANI
17:12   Covaxin will be at least 60% effective
In a statement that has generated optimism and curiosity in the medical fraternity, Bharat Biotech said on Sunday that its Covid-19 vaccine 'Covaxin' will be at least 60 per cent effective, according to trial data.

President of Quality Operations at Bharat Biotech Sai D Prasad said the World Health Organisation, United States Food and Drug Administration, and India's Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation approved a respiratory disease vaccine if it was at least 50 per cent effective.

The firm said while it had aimed to achieve at least 60 [er cent efficacy - a minimum criteria set - it was now attempting to reach an even higher rate. Chances of the vaccine being less than 50 per cent effective are remote, as suggested by our trial results so far," it said.

In their target product profile for Covid-19 vaccines, WHO suggested that a clear demonstration of efficacy (on a population basis) ideally with 50 per cent point estimate should be a minimum criterion for any acceptable candidate. The body also said that efficacy can be assessed against disease, severe disease, and/or shedding."

With the vaccine's efficacy passing the 50 per cent mark, the news strikes an optimistic note in the country as it continues to reel under the effects of the ongoing pandemic.

Bharat Biotech has also said the rolling-out process for the vaccine is aimed by mid-2021 after receiving approvals. "If we get all the approvals after establishing strong experimental evidence and data, and efficacy and safety data in our last stage of trials, we aim to launch the vaccine in Quarter 2 of 2021, the company said.
16:40   MP home minister asks cops to 'examine' 'A Suitable Boy' over 'objectionable scenes'
Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Narottam Mishra Sunday directed police officials to examine the content of Mira Nairs Netflix show A Suitable Boy after a scene from the miniseries kicked up a social media storm for purportedly hurting religious sentiments.

In a tweet, Mishra said, A film titled A Suitable Boy has been released on an OTT platform. It depicts extremely objectionable scenes that hurt the feelings of a particular religion. I have directed police officials to look into it.

Mishra, a cabinet minister in the Shivraj Singh Chauhan government, has also asked officials to inform whether legal action can be taken against the producer and director of the show for hurting religious sentiments.

The minister's statement comes a day after a youth BJP leader, Gaurav Tiwari, submitted a written complaint to Rewa SP Rakesh Kumar Singh, demanding that an FIR be registered. The police is yet to take action. Tiwari objected to a scene that shows two characters (played by Tanya Maniktala and Kabir Durrani ), one Hindu and Muslim, kissing in temple premises. The BJP leader also urged people on twitter to uninstall Netflix from their phone, following which #BoycottNetflix began to trend on Twitter.

Directed by Mira Nair, A Suitable Boy is a miniseries adaptation of Vikram Seths eponymous hefty novel of the same name and tells a story of four families which is set a few years after Indian Independence and the Partition.
16:06   UP to test people coming in from Delhi for Covid
Uttar Pradesh has decided to test people coming from Delhi as the national capital struggles with the surge in coronavirus. The neighbouring district of Gautam Budh Nagar has been conducting random checks on incoming people for a while.

"We will be testing people coming from Delhi via flight, bus or train, in the wake of surge in  COVID-19 cases in the national capital. We are discussing on the number of people allowed to attend wedding or event," UP Chief Secretary RK Tiwari said.
15:42   RBI Twitter handle joins million followers club
With one million Twitter followers, the Reserve Bank of India has become the first central bank in the world to reach this milestone.

The Reserve Bank of India has beaten the US Federal Reserve and European Central Bank on Twitter by emerging as the most popular central bank on the microblogging site with one million followers.
As per the latest information available on the RBI's twitter handle '@RBI', the number of followers has increased from 9.66 lakh on September 27, 2020 to one million or 10 lakh.
"RBI Twitter account reaches one million followers today. A new milestone. Congratulations to all my colleagues in RBI," Governor Shaktikanta Das said in a tweet on Sunday.
In contrast to this, the world's most powerful central bank, the US Federal Reserve, has only 6.67 lakh Twitter followers and the Frankfurt-headquartered European Central Bank, the second most powerful monetary authority in the world, has 5.91 lakh followers.

US Fed joined Twitter in March 2009, while ECB has been active on the microblogging site since October 2009.
The 85-year-old RBI got a Twitter account in January 2012. Governor Das has a separate Twitter handle with 1.35 lakh followers.
Since March 2019, the count of followers has more than doubled from just about 3,42,000 to over 7,50,000 by March 2020.
During the ongoing seven-week lockdown that began from March 25, the number of followers has increased by more than 1.5 lakh, an official said.
In the current financial year, as many as 2.5 lakh new followers joined the handle.
-- PTI
15:39   India may give emergency authorisation of Oxford vaccine
India may grant emergency use authorisation of Oxford's coronavirus vaccine to Pune-based Serum Institute if AstraZeneca gets such approval from the UK government, Niti Aayog member Vinod Paul said on Saturday. He also said that if the clinical trials of the coronavirus vaccine in India go as per the script, phase III trials should be over by January-February 2021.

Vinod Paul, chairman of the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19, said that the Indian drug regulator Drugs Controller General of India may consider giving emergency authorisation of Oxford's coronavirus vaccine to Adar Poonawalla's SII if AstraZeneca gets it in the UK.

"We expect emergency authorisation for Oxford-Astrazeneca vaccine to be sought in the UK. If so, it will give an opportunity for India regulator also," Vinod Paul said. If an emergency authorisation is granted in India before the phase 3 trials are completed, would make it possible that people in the priority list be administered early next year.
15:22   Eye on 2024 polls, Nadda to go on 120-day nationwide tour from December
BJP president J P Nadda will embark on a 120-day nationwide tour to tone up the party's formidable organisational machinary with an eye on the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, as the saffron dispensation looks to focus on regions where it did not fare well in the last general election. 
BJP general secretary Arun Singh told reporters that Nadda will begin his travel from the first week of December and Uttarakhand will be the first state on his itinerary. 
December 5 is the likely date for the beginning of his tour. 
Singh said the BJP president will visit every state, hold virtual meetings with heads of all booth units, the smallest organisational entity in the party, and meet every MP and MLA of the organisation besides its senior leaders, including district chiefs, in each state. 
Nadda will visit some booths to interact with ground workers, he added. 
During the travel, he will also strategise with party leaders for strengthening the organisation in Lok Sabha seats and regions where the BJP did not win in the 2019 polls, he said. 
With assembly polls in four states, West Bengal, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Assam, set to be held in the first half of the next year, he will also review the party's preparedness for the elections, Singh said.
-- PTI
15:06   Hathras case accused taken to Guj for polygraph
The four accused in the Hathras case who are lodged in Aligarh jail are being taken to Gujarat's Gandhinagar for a polygraph and brain mapping test by a team of Central Bureau of Investigation officials.

The Uttar Pradesh government led by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had recommended a CBI probe into the Hathras case.

Last month, the Central Bureau of Investigation had taken over the probe into a 19-year-old Dalit girl's alleged gangrape and subsequent death in Uttar Pradesh's Hathras. A resident of Boolgarhi village in Uttar Pradesh's Hathras, the girl died at Delhi's Safdarjung hospital on September 29.

The four accused in the case were arrested before the death of the victim on September 26.
14:38   Bharti Singh, husband in custody till Dec 4
Day after comedian Bharti Singh was arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau following the seizure of cannabis (ganja) from her house in Andheri in Maharashtra, the agency has also arrested her husband, Haarsh Limbachiyaa, in the drug-related case. Bharti Singh and Haarsh Limbachiyaa were produced at the Quilla court on Sunday afternoon after which, they were sent to judicial custody till December 4.

Earlier in the day, NCB Zonal Director Sameer Wankhede confirmed Haarsh Limbachiyaa's arrest by the agency. He said Bharti Singh and Haarsh Limbachiyaa are only accused of consuming ganja.

After arresting them, NCB produced comedian Bharti Singh, Haarsh Limbachiyaa and the two other drug peddlers at Quilla court. As per the latest development, Bharti Singh and Haarsh Limbachiyaa have been sent to judicial custody till December 4 by the Quilla court. The other two peddlers have been sent to police custody.

Bharti Singh and Haarsh Limbachiyaa have applied for their bail hearing in the drug case which has been scheduled for tomorrow.
14:19   Pakistan targets villages along LoC
Pakistani troops targeted forward posts and villages along the International Border and Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir's Kathua and Rajouri district, drawing retaliation from Indian troops, officials said on Sunday.

However, there was no report of any casualty in the latest ceasefire violation which came a day after a personnel of the Indian Army was killed and three others including two women were injured in separate ceasefire violations by Pakistan in Rajouri and Poonch districts. 

Jammu and Kashmir has recorded over 4000 ceasefire violations by Pakistan so far this year, which is the highest in the past decade, compared to a total of 3289 violations in 2019, officials said.

-- PTI
14:09   Modi greets Mulayam on his birthday
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday greeted Samajwadi Party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav on his 81st birthday, and said the former Uttar Pradesh chief minister and union minister is passionate about agriculture and rural development.
Modi spoke to Yadav, a foremost socialist leader, to greet him.
"Spoke to Shri Mulayam Singh Yadav Ji and greeted him on his birthday. He is one of the senior-most and experienced leaders of our country who is passionate about agriculture and rural development. I pray for his long and healthy life," the prime minister tweeted. 

-- PTI
13:55   WHO Covid envoy fears third wave in Europe
A World Health Organization special Covid-19 envoy predicted a third wave of the pandemic in Europe in early 2021, if governments repeat what he said was a failure to do what was needed to prevent the second wave of infections.

They missed building up the necessary infrastructure during the summer months, after they brought the first wave under the control, the WHOs David Nabarro said in an interview with Swiss newspapers.

Now we have the second wave. If they dont build the necessary infrastructure, well have a third wave early next year, said Nabarro, a Briton who campaigned unsuccessfully to become the WHO director general in 2017.

Europe briefly enjoyed sinking infection rates that are now surging again: Germany and France on Saturday saw cases rise by 33,000 combined, Switzerland and Austria have thousands of cases daily, while Turkey reported a record 5,532 new infections.
13:30   No leadership crisis in Cong: Khurshid
Amid criticism of the Congress top brass by some leaders following a poor show in the Bihar polls, senior leader Salman Khurshid on Sunday said there is no leadership crisis in the party and an all-round support for Sonia and Rahul Gandhi is "apparent to anyone who is not blind".
Khurshid, who is among the leaders considered close to the Gandhi family, also said there are enough forums in the Congress for airing views and doing so outside the party "hurts" it, remarks that come days after senior leader Kapil Sibal and some others went public with their criticism of the party leadership.

"The leadership listens to me, I am given an opportunity, they (those criticising in the media) are given an opportunity, where does this thing come from that the leadership is not listening," Khurshid told PTI in an interview.
Asked about comments by Sibal and another senior leader P Chidambaram on Congress' poor showing in the Bihar election and recent bypolls, he said he cannot disagree with what they have said, but asked why does anybody have to go out and tell the media and the world that "we need to do this".

"Analysis is done all the time, there is no quarrel about analysis. It will be done. The leadership, of which all these people are a part, will appropriately look at what may have gone wrong, how we could have improved, and that will happen in the normal course, we needn't talk about it in the public," said Khurshid, a permanent invitee to the Congress Working Committee.
His remarks come days after Sibal's public criticism of the Congress leadership and his statement that the time of introspection was over and people no longer saw the party as an effective alternative.

-- PTI
12:44   Improvement in Tarun Gogoi's health: Doctor
The health condition of former Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi marginally improved on Sunday morning, and he is currently semi-conscious, Abhijit Sarma, the superintendent of Gauhati Medical College and Hospital, said.

The veteran Congress leader was admitted to GMCH on November 2 due to post-COVID complications.

Sarma told reporters that doctors have repeated all clinical tests and his vital health parameters have shown improvement compared to that of Saturday.

"He is semi-conscious now. We had said last night that 48 hours were very critical for him. Twenty four hours have passed and there is no deterioration in his health condition. That is the most important thing," he stated.

Gogoi's pulse rate and blood pressure are under check, and his oxygen saturation level 95-97 per cent.

"The only worry is the urine output, which is around 100-120 ml in 24 hours," he said, adding that doctors will soon decide on the next step that was to be taken to improve his kidney functioning.

The 84-year-old politician spontaneously opened his eyes and looked around in the morning, the GMCH superintendent said.

"There was slight movement, which we call moto movement. This is a good sign. Technically speaking, although he is critical, he is stable haemodynamically," he maintained.

-- PTI
12:39   Gurgaon 'Covid Lab' busted
Acting on a tip-off, Haryana Police on Saturday busted a fake pathology lab, which forged COVID-19 test reports, and arrested two persons, in Sainikhera village in Gurugram's Sector 30.

The accused have been identified as Anirban Roy, who is from Kolkata, and Parimal Roy of Murshidabad. The duo was residing in a rented accommodation in the village.

Drug Controller Officer Amandeep Chauhan said the Chief Minister's Flying Squad received a complaint that fake coronavirus test reports were being generated in Gurugram, which people were using to travel abroad.
12:06   Covid-19: Central teams rushed to Punjab, Himachal, UP
High-level central teams have been sent to four more states -- Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Chhattisgarh -- to help the state governments tackle the Covid surge. 

Last week, the Union Government has sent the high level teams to Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Manipur, and Chhattisgarh.

All these states have been either reporting a rise in the number of active cases.
11:43   Moderna to charge $25-$37 for Covid-19 vaccine
Moderna will charge governments between $25 and $37 per dose of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, depending on the amount ordered, Chief Executive Stephane Bancel told German weekly Welt am Sonntag.

Our vaccine therefore costs about the same as a flu shot, which is between $10 and $50, he was quoted as saying.

Moderna has said its experimental vaccine is 94.5% effective in preventing COVID-19, based on interim data from a late-stage clinical trial, becoming the second developer to report results that far exceeded expectations after Pfizer and its partner BioNTech.

The EU has been in talks with Moderna for its experimental COVID-19 vaccine at least since July.
11:23   Drone movement noticed in J-K's Mendhar sector along LoC
Amid a surge in ceasefire violations by the Pakistani army, drone movement was noticed in the Mendhar sector along the Line of Control on Saturday night, according to sources.

Earlier on Friday, two drones were spotted from the direction of Pakistan and crossed International Border in the Samba sector.

According to Border Security Force sources, two drones came from the direction of Pakistan and crossed International Border in Samba sector of Jammu and Kashmir at around 6 pm on Friday. BSF troops fired upon them.

Jawans on the border are keeping strict vigil.

-- ANI
10:57   Trump campaign asks for recount in Georgia
The Trump Campaign has filed a petition for recount of votes in Georgia, days after US President-elect Joe Biden wrested the Republican stronghold by a little over 1,2000 votes.
Democrat Biden became the first Democrat to have won the key battleground state since 1992 after a hand recount of nearly five million votes, that lasted for several days.
Georgia hadn't voted for a Democratic presidential candidate since Bill Clinton in 1992.
In case of a recount, election officials in Georgia will have to re-scan the five million hand-recounted and audited legal ballots.
We are focused on ensuring that every aspect of Georgia State Law and the US Constitution are followed so that every legal vote is counted. President Trump and his campaign continue to insist on an honest recount in Georgia, which has to include signature matching and other vital safeguards, the Trump campaign said in a late-night statement on Saturday.
Without signature matching, this recount would be a sham and again allow for illegal votes to be counted. If there is no signature matching, this would be as phony as the initial vote count and recount, said the statement issued by the legal team of the campaign.
Let's stop giving the people false results. There must be a time when we stop counting illegal ballots. Hopefully it is coming soon, said the campaign, a day after Georgia Secretary of State, who is also from the same Republican Party, officially certified the election results which was narrowly won by Biden.
After initial counting of votes in the state, Biden was leading by about 14,000 votes, which prompted the Georgia Secretary of State to order a hand recount which reduced Biden's lead slightly to 12,284. Georgia has 16 electoral college votes.
President-elect Biden has secured 306 electoral votes as compared to Trump's 232. To win the race to the White House, the successful candidate should have at least 270 electoral votes out of the 538-member Electoral College.
Trump won Georgia by 5 percentage points in 2016 over Democrat Hillary Clinton.
Trump has refused to concede the election results and has filed multiple lawsuits challenging poll results in several states.
Can't accept the results of an election with hundreds of thousands of fraudulent votes cast, enough to easily flip the Election. You're just unhappy that I'm bringing the troops back home where they belong! Trump said in a tweet Saturday night. -- PTI
10:39   Petrol, diesel prices rise for 3rd straight day
Petrol price on Sunday was hiked by 8 paise per litre and diesel by 19 paise, the third straight day of increase in rates as the firming international oil rates broke a nearly two-month-long hiatus in price revision.
Petrol price in Delhi was hiked to Rs 81.46 per litre from Rs 81.38, according to a price notification from oil marketing companies.
Diesel rates went up from Rs 70.88 to Rs 71.07 per litre.
State-owned fuel retailers started raising fuel prices from Friday. In three days, petrol price has gone up by 40 paise and diesel rates have risen by 61 paise per litre.
Petrol prices had been static since September 22, and diesel rates hadn't changed since October 2.
Public sector oil marketing companies - Indian Oil Corporation, Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd - revise rates of petrol and diesel daily based on benchmark international oil price and foreign exchange rate.
They have, however, resorted to calibrating the rates since the pandemic broke out to avoid volatility in retail prices.
The 58-day hiatus in petrol price revision and 48-day status quo on diesel rates was preceded by no change in rates between June 30 and August 15, and an 85-day status quo between March 17 and June 6.
In Mumbai, the petrol price on Sunday was raised to Rs 88.16 per litre, from Rs 88.09, while diesel rates went up from Rs 77.34 to Rs 77.54.
Rates vary from state to state depending on the incidence of local sales tax or VAT. -- PTI
10:07   Delhi records coldest November morning in 17 yrs
Delhi's minimum temperature dropped to 6.9 degrees Celsius on Sunday, the lowest in the month of November since 2003, as a cold wave swept parts of the city. 
The national capital had recorded a minimum of 7.5 degrees Celsius on Friday, the lowest in the month in 14 years, according to the India Meteorological Department.
"The Safdarjung Observatory which provides representative data for the city, recorded a minimum of 6.9 degrees Celsius. It is Delhi's lowest minimum temperature in the month since November 2003, when the city recorded a minimum of 6.1 degrees Celsius," said Kuldeep Srivastava, the head of the IMD's regional forecasting centre.  
The mercury dropped to 6.1 degrees Celsius at the Palam weather station, he said.
For the plains, the IMD declares a cold wave when the minimum temperature is 10 degrees Celsius or below and is 4.5 notches less than normal for two consecutive days.
"However, for small areas such as Delhi, a cold wave can be declared if the criteria is fulfilled even for a day," Srivastava said.
Delhi had recorded the lowest minimum temperature of 11.5 degrees Celsius last year, 10.5 degrees Celsius in 2018 and 7.6 degrees Celsius in 2017 in the month of November.
The all-time record for the lowest minimum temperature in November is 3.9 degrees Celsius recorded on November 28, 1938.
Srivastava said icy cold winds blowing from snow-laden western Himalayas have led to a dip in the mercury.
However, the minimum temperature will rise by two to three degrees Celsius in the next four to five days under the influence of a fresh Western Disturbance. 
The minimum temperature this month, barring on November 16, has remained 2-3 degree Celsius below normal in the absence of a cloud cover, according to IMD officials.
Clouds trap some of the outgoing infrared radiation and  radiate it back downward, warming the ground.
The month of October was the coldest in 58 years in the national capital. 
The mean minimum temperature in October this year was 17.2 degrees Celsius, the lowest since 1962, when it was 16.9 degrees Celsius. -- PTI
09:48   India's Covid tally rises to 90,95,807
India's coronavirus tally rises to 90,95,807 with 45,209 new infections, the Union health ministry data showed.

With 501 new deaths, the total fatalities mounts to 1,33,227. 

There are currently 4,40,962 active cases in country.

So far, 85,21,617 people have been recovered from the disease. 
09:40   Federal judge dismisses Trump campaign's Pennsylvania lawsuit
Donald Trump presented "strained" legal arguments without merit and "speculative accusations" that were not supported by evidence, a federal judge has ruled as she dismissed the Pennsylvania lawsuit of his campaign, in a major setback to the United States president's efforts to challenge the November 3 election results.
US Middle District of Pennsylvania Judge Matthew Brann on Saturday turned down a request for an injunction in the case in Pennsylvania to challenge the poll results, which has been won by Trump's Democratic rival Joe Biden.
Judge Brann, who had a few days ago alleged that she had received harassing phone calls, ruled that the Trump campaign "presented strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations that were unsupported by evidence."
"In the United States of America, this cannot justify the disenfranchisement of a single voter, let alone all the voters of its sixth most populated state. Our people, laws, and institutions demand more," the judge wrote dismissing the lawsuit filed by the Trump campaign earlier this month alleging irregularities in the voting process.
In her scathing opinion, Judge Brann said the Trump campaign asked the court to "disenfranchise" almost seven million voters.
"This court has been unable to find any case in which a plaintiff has sought such a drastic remedy in the contest of an election, in terms of the sheer volume of votes asked to be invalidated," she said.
"One might expect that when seeking such a startling outcome, a plaintiff would come formidably armed with compelling legal arguments and factual proof of rampant corruption, such that this court would have no option but to regrettably grant the proposed injunctive relief despite the impact it would have on such a large group of citizens," the judge said.
Trump has refused to concede the November 3 election and has filed multiple lawsuits challenging the poll results in several states.
Former vice president Biden was declared the winner of the US presidential election on November 7 after flipping Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin to the Democrats' column.
Biden now has 306 electoral votes to Trump's 232 votes. To win the race to the White House, the successful candidate should have at least 270 electoral votes out of the 538-member Electoral College.
The President-elect leads by more than 81,000 votes in Pennsylvania, a battleground state that has 20 electoral college seats.
Rudy Giuliani, Attorney to President Trump and Jenna Ellis, Senior Legal Adviser to Trump 2020 Campaign, in a joint statement said the decision of a federal court in Pennsylvania turns out to help the Trump campaign in their strategy to get expeditiously to the US Supreme Court.
"Although we fully disagree with this opinion, we're thankful to the Obama-appointed judge for making this anticipated decision quickly, rather than simply trying to run out the clock," they said.
"We will be seeking an expedited appeal to the Third Circuit. There is so much evidence that in Pennsylvania, Democrats eliminated our opportunity to present 50 witnesses and other evidence that election officials blatantly ignored Pennsylvania's law denying independent review,� they said.
This resulted in 682,777 ballots being cast illegally, wittingly or unwittingly. This is just an extension of "the Big Tech, Big Media, Corrupt Democrat censorship of damning facts" the American public needs to know, Giuliani and Ellis said.
"We are disappointed we did not at least get the opportunity to present our evidence at a hearing. Unfortunately, the censorship continues. We hope that the Third Circuit will be as gracious as Judge Brann in deciding our appeal one way or the other as expeditiously as possible. This is another case that appears to be moving quickly to the United States Supreme Court," they said.
Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, the organisation that intervened in the case, said the court verdict has dealt another blow to the president's attempts to undermine the Election 2020's decisive results in the commonwealth. -- PTI
08:29   Comedian Bharti Singh's husband arrested by NCB
Comedian Bharti Singh's husband Haarsh Limbachiyaa has been arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau.

Singh was arrested yesterday by the anti-drug agency following seizure of ganja (cannabis) from her house in suburban Andheri.

The NCB searched Singh's house and office on Saturday as part of its probe into alleged drug use in the Hindi film industry.

It recovered 86.5 grams of ganja during the search, the release added.

The quantity allegedly seized from Singh's possession is considered as 'small quantity' under the act, as against 'commercial quantity', an NCB official said.

Up to 1,000 grams of ganja is considered small quantity, which attracts jail term up to six months and/or fine of Rs 10,000.

Possession of commercial quantity -- 20 kg or more -- can attract up to 20 years in jail.

For the quantity in between, the punishment can be as much as 10 years in jail.
08:22   Covid biggest challenge since WW-II: PM at G20
Terming the COVID-19 pandemic an important turning point in history of humanity and the biggest challenge the world is facing since World War II, Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the G20 summit on Saturday called for a new global index based on talent, technology, transparency and trusteeship towards the planet in the post-corona world.
Modi also said that "Work from Anywhere" is a new normal in the post-COVID world and suggested creation of a virtual G20 secretariat as a follow up and documentation repository.
Saudi Arabia's King Salman opened the Group of 20 Summit as the coronavirus pandemic overshadowed this year's gathering of heads of state that is being held in the virtual format. 

India is scheduled to host the G20 summit in 2022.
"Had a very fruitful discussion with G20 leaders. Coordinated efforts by the largest economies of the world will surely lead to faster recovery from this pandemic. Thanked Saudi Arabia for hosting the Virtual Summit," Prime Minister Modi tweeted.
At the G20 Summit, Modi said that he put forward a need to develop a new global index based on talent, technology, transparency and trusteeship towards the planet.
Multi-skilling and re-skilling to build a talent pool will enhance dignity and resilience of workers, he said, adding that the value of new technologies should be measured by their benefit to humanity. 
"Transparency in our processes helps in inspiring our societies to fight crisis collectively and with confidence. Spirit of trusteeship towards planet Earth will inspire us for a healthy and holistic lifestyle," he said in a series of tweets.
The Ministry of External Affairs, in a statement on Modi's participation in the G20, said the prime minister termed the COVID-19 pandemic as an important turning point in history of humanity and the biggest challenge the world is facing since World War II.
He called for a decisive action by the G20, not limited to economic recovery, jobs and trade, but focussing on preserving planet Earth, noting that "all of us are trustees of humanity's future".
The prime minister called for a new Global Index for the post-corona world that comprises four key elements creation of a vast talent pool, ensuring that technology reaches all segments of the society, transparency in systems of governance, and dealing with Mother Earth with a spirit of trusteeship, according to the MEA. 
Based on this, the G20 can lay the foundation of a new world, he said.
At the G20 summit, the prime minister called for greater transparency in governance systems which he said "will inspire our citizens to deal with shared challenges and enhance their confidence". 
Modi also offered India's IT prowess to further develop digital facilities for efficient functioning of the G20.
The prime minister underscored that in the past few decades, while there has been an emphasis on capital and finance, the time has come to focus on multi-skilling and re-skilling to create a vast human talent pool.
This would not only enhance dignity of citizens but would make citizens more resilient to face crises, Modi said.
He also said that any assessment of new technology should be based on its impact on ease of living and quality of life. --