Mon, 18 October 2021
HM reviews Kashmir situation amid civilian killings

Timeline  Refresh

23:36   Shah reviews Kashmir situation amid civilian killings
Union Home Minister Amit Shah discussed various security issues, including the recent killing of civilians in Jammu and Kashmir, in a meeting with state police and central armed police forces chiefs in New Delhi on Monday, officials said.
Shah chaired the concluding session of the "National Security Strategies Conference" at the Intelligence Bureau headquarters in New Delhi and the deliberations held were "detailed and expansive", a spokesperson of the ministry said.
The DGPs of all states and Union Territories, and chiefs of Central Armed Police Forces participated in the meeting.
"The conference deliberated on various internal security challenges and discussed ways to tackle them firmly," the spokesperson said.
Official sources said the overall security situation in the country and various law and order issues, including the recent incidents of targeted killings of civilians in Kashmir, were discussed in the meeting.
A spate of civilian killings have taken place in Kashmir in which non-local labourers have been shot dead by terrorists over the last few days.
In the meeting, the home minister also reviewed the current Left Wing Extremism scenario in various Naxal-affected states and discussed busting of terror modules across the country, the sources said.
The meeting is part of the exercise initiated by the home minister to meet the top police brass once in six months. -- PTI  
22:50   BJP, RSS to hold coordination meet from Tuesday
A two-day coordination meeting of the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh will be held in Delhi from Tuesday to deliberate on policy-related issues, sources said on Monday.
Top leaders of the BJP, including its secretary-general (organisation) BL Santhosh, other officer-bearers and Union ministers are expected to attend the meeting, they said.
RSS-affiliated organisations related to various sectors like education, culture and economy are expected to attend the close-door meeting.
Top office-bearers of the RSS are also likely to be there in the meeting, the sources said.
Such meetings between the RSS and representatives of the BJP and its government at the Centre keep taking place for sharing of ideas and giving feedback on government policies. -- PTI 
22:45   'Cannot cut corners' in approving Covaxin: WHO
The World Health Organisation on Monday said it was expecting additional information from India's Bharat Biotech regarding its COVID-19 jab Covaxin, asserting that it "cannot cut corners" before recommending a vaccine for emergency use.         
The global health agency also emphasized that it must evaluate a vaccine thoroughly to make sure it is "safe and effective".
Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech, which has developed Covaxin, had submitted EOI (Expression of Interest) to the WHO on April 19 for the vaccine's Emergency Use Listing.
In a series of tweets, the WHO said, "we are aware that many people are waiting for WHO's recommendation for Covaxin to be included in the #COVID-19 Emergency Use Listing, but we cannot cut corners - before recommending a product for emergency use, we must evaluate it thoroughly to make sure it is safe and effective."
It also said that Bharat Biotech has been submitting data to WHO on a rolling basis and WHO experts have reviewed these data. 
"WHO is expecting one additional piece of information from the company today," it said.
"When the information provided addresses all questions raised, WHO and the Technical Advisory Group will complete the assessment and come to a final recommendation whether to grant EUL to the vaccine, it said.
The WHO said the timeframe for its EUL procedure is dependent on how quickly a company, producing the vaccine, is able to provide the data required for WHO to evaluate the vaccine's quality, safety, efficacy and suitability for low- and middle-income countries.
The WHO's tweet came a day after its chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan said that the agency's technical advisory group will meet on October 26 to consider the emergency use listing of India's Covaxin which is being used in the country's nationwide anti-COVID-19 vaccination programme. 
"The technical advisory group will meet on Oct 26th to consider EUL for #Covaxin. @WHO has been working closely with @BharatBiotech to complete the dossier. Our goal is to have a broad portfolio of vaccines approved for emergency use & to expand access to populations everywhere," she said.
Bharat Biotech last month said it has submitted all data pertaining to Covaxin to the WHO for EUL and is awaiting feedback from the global health watchdog. 
"#COVAXIN clinical trial data was fully compiled & available in June 2021. All data was submitted for EUL application to WHO in early July. We have responded to any clarifications sought by #WHO and are awaiting further feedback," it said in a tweet. 
"We are diligently working with the WHO to obtain EUL at the earliest," the company added. -- PTI
22:23   Over 98 cr Covid vax administered in India: Govt
The cumulative number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country crossed 98 crore on Monday, the Union health ministry said.
More than 79 lakh (79,74,435) vaccine doses were administered till 7 pm, it said.
The daily vaccination tally is expected to increase with the compilation of the final reports for the day by late night, the ministry said.
So far, over 98.6 crore doses have been given, it said.
The countrywide vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16 with healthcare workers getting inoculated in the first phase. The vaccination of frontline workers (FLWs) started from February 2.
The next phase of COVID-19 vaccination commenced from March 1 for people over 60 years of age and those aged 45 and above with specified co-morbid conditions.
The country launched vaccination for all people aged more than 45 years from April 1.
The government then decided to expand its vaccination drive by allowing everyone above 18 to be vaccinated from May 1. -- PTI
22:21   Wettest October in Delhi since 1960
The month of October this year has been the wettest in the city since 1960, when the national capital had recorded 93.4 mm rainfall. 

This year, 94.6 mm of rainfall has already been recorded in the city in October. 

According to data shared by the India Meteorological Department, the month of October in 1910 had recorded 185.9 mm rainfall, 238.2 mm rainfall in 1954, 236.2 mm rainfall in 1956 and 93.4 mm of rainfall in 1960. 

In 2004, 89 mm rainfall was recorded in October. 

On Sunday, the national capital recorded 87.9 mm of rainfall, the fourth highest in a day, according to data. 

In 1910, Delhi had recorded 152.4 mm rainfall on a single day in October while 172.7 mm rainfall was received in 24 hours in 1954.

In 1956, the national capital had recorded 111 mm rainfall in a single day. 
Last month, the capital gauged 413.3 mm rainfall, the highest after 417.3 mm precipitation recorded in September 1944 and the second-highest in 121 years. 

Delhi witnessed 18 rainy days and three heavy rain events in September this year, the highest in at least 10 years, according to the IMD. 

Rainfall recorded below 15 mm is considered light, between 15 and 64.5 mm is moderate, between 64.5 mm and 115.5 mm is heavy, between 115.6 and 204.4 is very heavy. 

Anything above 204.4 mm is considered extremely heavy rainfall. 

The capital has been logging a new weather record every month since August last year. -- PTI  
21:33   4 more nabbed over Lakhimpur violence, total 10 arrests
The Uttar Pradesh police on Monday apprehended four more persons over the Lakhimpur Kheri violence, taking the number of arrests in the episode to 10, said officials.
Eight persons, including four farmers, were killed in the October 3 violence during a farmers' protest in the Tikonia area of the district, with the incident snowballing into a major political controversy over the alleged involvement of a Union minister's son, who is among those arrested in the case.
"Four persons were arrested on Monday by the Crime Branch of the Lakhimpur Kheri police along with the SWAT team. The SIT investigators and other senior officials are interrogating the accused and further probe is underway," the UP police said in a statement.
Those held have been identified as Sumit Jaiswal, Shishi Pal, Satya Prakash Tripathi alias Satyam and Nandan Singh Bisht, the police said. -- PTI
21:29   Amusement parks to reopen in Maharashtra from Oct 22
As the coronavirus figures show the signs of declining in Maharashtra, the state government has allowed the reopening of amusement parks from October 22, the Chief Minister's secretariat said on Monday. 
However, water rides in amusement parks have still not been permitted, it added.
The meeting of the Maharashtra COVID-19 Task Force was held in Mumbai by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to discuss the extension of the timing of restaurants and shops.
"We are slowly relaxing the restrictions and the number of patients seems to be decreasing. We are also reopening cinemas and theatres from October 22. There is a constant demand to extend the working hours of restaurants and shops," the statement quoted Thackeray as saying.
"It was also decided to allow rides (except water rides) in the open space in amusement parks," it added.
Thackeray directed officials to prepare guidelines for extending the operational hours for restaurants and shops.
The chief minister also instructed the Public Health Department to coordinate with the Centre on the availability of vaccines for children. He also asked them to prepare a plan for inoculating children once the Centre approves it.
Although the second wave of the pandemic has subsided, the danger of a third wave is still there and it is very important to follow COVID-19 protocols like wearing masks and keeping a safe distance, the CM said. 
Vasant Nagvekar, infectious disease consultant at Global Hospital at Parel in Mumbai and a member of the state's COVID-19 Task Force said, with the chief minister likely to announce relaxations for restaurants and shopkeepers, people of the city and Maharashtra must follow the social distancing norms like compulsory masking and vaccination.
The chief minister had last month announced that cinema halls and drama theatres can reopen in Maharashtra from October 22 on the condition that they follow all the protocols required to prevent the spread of coronavirus. 
Earlier in the day, the chief minister said theatres and cinema halls, which will reopen from October 22, should start with proper fire and structural safety checks after meeting the  representatives of the Cinema Owners and Exhibitors Association. -- PTI
20:49   No CSK without Dhoni: N Srinivasan
There is no Chennai Super Kings without MS Dhoni, India Cements Ltd vice-chairman and managing director N Srinivasan said on Monday.
Likewise, the former BCCI chief added that there is no MS Dhoni without Chennai Super Kings, his emphatic statement telling a lot about the relation between the franchise and the iconic cricketer.
Under Dhoni's leadership, CSK won their fourth IPL title recently to complete an incredible comeback after their forgettable outing last year.
"Dhoni is part and parcel of CSK, Chennai and Tamil Nadu. There is no CSK without Dhoni and there is no Dhoni without CSK," Srinivasan told reporters during a brief interaction after visiting Lord Venkatachalapathy temple in Chennai with the IPL trophy.
ICL owned the CSK franchise from inception in 2008 till 2014, when the ownership was transferred to Chennai Super Kings Cricket Ltd.
The Dhoni-led CSK beat Kolkata Knight Riders in the final last Friday to lift the IPL title for a fourth time.
Asked about retaining Dhoni and other CSK players in the next IPL auction, he said retention policy is yet to be announced.
To a question on the criticism about no cricketer from Tamil Nadu featuring in the CSK team, he said 13 players from the TNPL are playing in the IPL or representing India.
"Lot of people are watching TNPL matches and it will go from strength to strength."
When asked about CSK's victory celebrations, Srinivasan said Dhoni would come to Chennai after doing duty as the Indian team mentor in the T20 World Cup and "share the trophy with Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin at a function proposed to be organised at the M A Chidambaram Stadium".
Srinivasan, who is a member of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams Trust Board, received the trophy after a ritual at the Lord Venkateswara temple.
TNCA president Rupa Gurunath, who is also a director at India Cements Ltd and K S  Viswanathan, CEO of Chennai Super Kings Cricket Limited, were also present. -- PTI  
20:48   Prominent Kolkata businessman, driver hacked to death
Subir Chaki, the Managing Director of prominent engineering firm Kilburn Engineering, and his driver were found killed in Gariahat locality of South Kolkata, police said on Monday.
The bodies of Chaki (61) and his driver Rabin Mondal (65) were found with multiple stab injuries on their neck, legs and back at an ancestral building owned by the businessman on Sunday night. While the body of Chaki was found in a pool of blood on the second floor, that of his driver was recovered from the first floor of the building on Kakulia Road.

Chaki, who had bought an apartment in New Town, where he lived with his wife and mother, wanted to sell off the property, police said, citing family members and neighbours of the deceased. He was in touch with some prospective buyers. His son lives in London and married daughter in Bengaluru. 

Chaki had gone to his ancestral house on Sunday evening in a luxury car with his driver. -- PTI
20:15   BJP objects to 'vilification' of Patel at Cong meet
The Bharatiya Janata Party on Monday accused the Congress of committing a "sin" over reports that a leader at the recent Congress Working Committee meeting made critical remarks about Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel on the issue of Jammu and Kashmir and asked if the party leadership will take action against him.
As BJP leaders attacked the Congress, the opposition party dismissed the reports with its chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala alleging that "spreading lies and canards"  has become a norm for some.
BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra cited reports that Tariq Hameed Karra, a Kashmiri leader and a permanent invitee to the Congress Working Committee, had credited Jawaharlal Nehru for Jammu and Kashmir's integration with India and had alleged that Patel wanted to keep the Valley out.
Karra also linked Patel with Pakistan's founder M A Jinnah, the BJP spokesperson said citing reports.
Patra asked whether Congress president Sonia Gandhi or Rahul Gandhi objected when Karra "vilified" Patel and presented India's first home minister as a "villain" while praising Nehru.
Slamming the reports, Surjewala claimed that they are aimed at giving cover fire to the Modi government to "justify lies-driven press conferences" while the BJP dispensation is "never" questioned.
Seizing on the issue, Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan took a swipe at the Congress, claiming that the Gandhi family cannot even unite the party, let alone uniting India.
"Pity that CWC meetings are reduced to pleasing 'One Family' even if it is at the expense of insulting & maligning the stalwarts of the country... The Congress, with a leadership crisis, will always find itself on the fringes," he tweeted.
"'The Family may enjoy these imaginary garlands of blandishment by Congress slaves, but India will not tolerate the insult of its greats, including the revered Sardar Patel," he added.
The Congress, Patra alleged, is reduced to being a party of a family and works to advance the family's rule.
"What sort of mindset is this that one family has done everything and others have done nothing. What the CWC has done is a sin," he said.
20:01   Indian Navy receives 11th P-8I aircraft from Boeing
The Indian Navy has received the 11th anti-submarine warfare aircraft P-8I from the US-based aerospace company Boeing, according to a statement issued on Monday.
The Defence Ministry had first signed a contract for eight P-8I aircraft in 2009. Later, in 2016, it signed a contract for four additional P-8I aircraft.
"This is the third aircraft to be delivered under the option contract for four additional aircraft that the Indian Ministry of Defence awarded in 2016," the statement said.
"In addition to unmatched maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare capabilities, the P-8I has been deployed to assist during disaster relief and humanitarian missions," it added.
The Indian Navy had received the ninth P-8I aircraft in November last year and got the 10th P-8I aircraft in July this year.
The patrol aircraft is an integral part of the Indian Navy's fleet and has surpassed 30,000 flight hours since it was inducted in 2013, the statement added.
"Boeing supports India's growing P-8I fleet by providing training of Indian Navy flight crews, spare parts, ground support equipment and field service representative support," it said.
Boeing's integrated logistics support has enabled a high state of fleet readiness at the lowest possible cost, the statement said. -- PTI
19:59   Babul Supriyo to formally resign as MP on Tuesday
Former Bharatiya Janata Party leader Babul Supriyo will formally resign as MP on Tuesday, he said in a tweet, weeks after he quit the party to join the Trinamool Congress.
In a tweet, the former union minister on Monday thanked Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla for granting him appointment to resign as Lok Sabha MP.
"Sincere Gratitude to Hon'ble Speaker Sir @ombirlakota for granting me his time tmrw at 11am to formally resign as a MP. I will not hold on to the Berth/Perks/Salary of a MP now that I am no longer a part of @BJP4India that I won the seat for. If I have it in me, will win it again," Supriyo tweeted.
This comes after the two-term MP from Asansol had on September 20 -- two days after joining West Bengal's ruling Trinamool Congress party -- wrote to Birla, seeking a 'brief' appointment with him to formally resign as a member of the house.
Hitting out at his detractors, Supriyo reminded them of his time with the saffron party.
"Just wish to ask one Ques (question) to the 'Employed Trolls' who am sure are attacking me frm (from) their homes. So where were u (you) guys when I fought for BJP since 2014? Ask your conscience as to who back-stabbed whom.. Unless needed I don't post anything on SM (social media). Just read the first two comments," he said. -- PTI 
18:54   For first time in 30 yrs, women frisked in Srinagar
Women were frisked by female Central Reserve Police Force constables in Srinagar's Lal Chowk area, a first of its kind exercise in last 30 years, in the wake of civilian killings in Kashmir.
The CRPF women checked the bags of female folk passing through the city centre Lal Chowk.
While there was no resistance, some women expressed resentment, saying the exercise could have been done away from the public glare. 
"Women carry many things which they keep private. The CRPF women should have erected a makeshift cubicle so that privacy was maintained," Fareeda, a woman from Soura, said. 
She said she had no issues with the frisking but the manner in which it was done. 
The frisking of women folk has not been done before in Kashmir and is being undertaken following a spate of civilian killings in  which non-local labourers have been targeted over the last few days. -- PTI  
18:06   How the states stack up in vaccination numbers
Uttar Pradesh has recorded the highest number of vaccinations so far. Maharashtra is in the second position, while Lakshwadeep has the least number of vaccinated people. 
Colin Powell: Pic courtesy his Facebook account
Colin Powell: Pic courtesy his Facebook account
17:58   Former US Secy of State Colin Powell dies of Covid
Colin Powell, former US Joint Chiefs chairman and secretary of state, has died from COVID-19 complications, his family said. 

Powell was the first Black US secretary of state whose leadership in several Republican administrations helped shape American foreign policy in the last years of the 20th century and the early years of the 21st.

He was 84.
Modi at the dhyan gufa in 2019
Modi at the dhyan gufa in 2019
17:52   Modi to meditate at Kedranath cave before Diwali
As Kedarnath gets its winter coat, Narendra Modi will stay in a cave in Kedarnath cave for a day before Diwali. The date is being finalised by the SPG. 

Modi went to the cave after the general election win in 2019, which resulted in an unprecedented rise in bookings for the cave which is called the dhyan gufa. 
17:37   Army chief on 2-day visit to Jammu
Army Chief General M M Naravane is on a two-day visit to the Jammu region where the General Officer Commanding (GOC) of White Knight Corps will give him an update on security situation and operational preparedness, the Indian Army said on Monday. 

Terrorists shot dead two non-local labourers and injured another on Sunday in Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir, the latest in the series of attacks targeting civilians. 

This is the third attack on non-local labourers in less than 24 hours. A street vendor from Bihar and a carpenter from Uttar Pradesh were shot dead by the ultras on Saturday evening. 

 Amid the spate of civilian killings, Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha had on Sunday vowed to avenge every drop of their blood by hunting down terrorists and their sympathisers. 

 The Indian Army said on Twitter on Monday: "General MM Naravane, COAS (Chief of Army Staff) is on a two day visit to Jammu Region wherein GOC White Knight Corps will give an update on security situation and operational preparedness." 

 "COAS will visit forward areas and interact with troops and commanders on ground," it added. PTI
17:34   Top gainers in the markets today
Infosys gained 4.47 per cent today. Here's how the other scrips did. 
17:01   Life imprisonment for Dera Sacha Sauda chief
A Special CBI court in Panchkula awards life imprisonment to all the accused, including Dera Sacha Sauda's Gurmeet Ram Rahim and four others. 

A fine of Rs 31 lakh has been levied on Ram Rahim and Rs 50,000 on the remaining accused.
16:49   Sale of AI will constitute a big milestone: IMF
The International Monetary Fund on Monday said the sale of national carrier Air India will constitute an "important milestone" in India's privatisation efforts. 

Tata group has emerged as the winning bidder for the loss-making Air India, and on October 11, a letter of intent (LoI) was issued to the group.

"We welcome the recent agreement on the sale of Air India, which constitutes an important milestone," Alfred Schipke, Director of IMF-STI Regional Training Institute and a former IMF India Mission Chief, told PTI in an interview. 

Earlier this month, the government accepted an offer by Talace Pvt Ltd, a unit of Tata group, to pay Rs 2,700 crore cash and takeover Rs 15,300 crore of Air India's debt. 

After Tatas accept the LoI, the share purchase agreement (SPA) for the sale will be signed. Along with Air India, Tatas will acquire low-cost carrier Air India Express and Air India's 50 per cent stake in equal joint venture AISATS. 

"In general, to maximise the benefits from privatisation, the international experience highlights the importance of medium-term privatisation plans, solid regulatory frameworks, competitive markets and the buy-in of key stakeholders," Schipke said as the IMF released its annual report on India.

As with all structural reforms during the transition, he said it is important to strengthen social safety nets to maximise the benefits and minimise any adverse implications.
16:40   SP's Nitin Agarwal elected as UP Assembly Dy Speaker
Samajwadi Party's Nitin Agarwal elected as the Deputy Speaker of Uttar Pradesh assembly. The only other candidate in Monday's deputy speaker election was Narendra Verma, who called himself the official nominee of the opposition SP.
16:06   Markets at new peak: Sensex rallies 460 points
Taking its winning streak to the seventh session, equity benchmark Sensex rallied 460 points to finish at a fresh lifetime peak on Monday, tracking heavy buying in banking, IT and metal stocks despite a weak trend in global markets. 

 After touching a lifetime high of 61,963.07 during the session, the 30-share BSE index ended 459.64 points or 0.75 per cent higher at its new closing record of 61,765.59. 

 Similarly, the Nifty surged 138.50 points or 0.76 per cent to its all-time closing high 18,477.05. 

It touched a new intra-day record of 18,543.15. Infosys was the top gainer in the Sensex pack, jumping over 4 per cent, followed by Tech Mahindra, Tata Steel, ICICI Bank, ITC, Maruti, SBI and Axis Bank. 

 On the other hand, HCL Tech, M&M, Dr Reddy's, Asian Paints, Bajaj Auto and Bharti Airtel were among the laggards.
15:59   Rail roko affects 150 locations, hinders running of 60 trains
The Samyukt Kisan Morcha's six-hour 'rail roko' protest on Monday over the Lakhimpur violence affected 150 locations in the Northern Railway zone and hindered the running of 60 trains, said its chief public relation officer (CPRO). 

 In the North Western Railway (NWR) zone, rail traffic was affected in some sections in Rajasthan and Haryana with 18 trains cancelled, 10 partially cancelled and one diverted due to the protest.

 The trains that have been affected in the Northern Railway zone include the Chandigarh-Ferozepur Express. Its scheduled departure from Ludhiana was 7 am, but has been stranded there due to a blockade in the Ferozpur-Ludhiana section, the official said. 

 The New Delhi-Amritsar Shatabdi Express was halted near Shambu station as protesters blocked railway tracks near Sahnewal and Rajpura.

 "So far, 150 locations in the Northern Railway zone have been affected and operations of 60 trains hindered. About 25 passenger and short distance trains have been cancelled," the Northern Railway CPRO said. 

 In Rajasthan, farmers held a protest on the tracks in Hanumangarh district and at the entrance of Jaipur Junction station and raised slogans against the Central and the Uttar Pradesh governments.
Representational image
Representational image
15:51   Karnataka to reopen schools for Classes I to V
Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Monday said schools will reopen for students of classes 1 to 5 in the state and the government will soon make an announcement in this regard.

"Already the experts committee has given the report, we will issue the order. Regarding, from when (to start the classes) and all those details, the Chief Secretary will hold a meeting with the education department," Bommai said. 

The CM said after the discussions, a decision on reopening schools for students from classes one to five will be taken. 

With COVID-19 cases declining, the government had reopened schools for students of classes 6 to 8 from September 6, and for students of classes 9 to 12 from August 23. 

Earlier in the day, Primary and Secondary Education Minister B C Nagesh said that the schools will be reopened for students of class 1 to 5 on the basis of the recommendation of the state's Technical Advisory Committee on COVID-19. 

"If they say from October 21, we will start; if they say a week later, we will start a week later." 

 Noting that the government wants to start classes from one to five in one go, he said, "but our plan is to have half-a-day classes during the initial one week or so, and thereafter full day classes, once students get used to it," he said. 

 The Minister, however, said no decision has been taken regarding reopening schools for LKG (Lower Kindergarten) and UKG (Upper Kindergarten) children. PTI
15:42   This is what Uddhav and Sharad Pawar discussed today
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Sharad Pawar, among other leaders, met at the Sahyadri Guest House in Mumbai on Monday to discuss issues related to farmers and COVID relaxations.

Maharashtra Home Minister and NCP leader Dilip Walse Patil, state deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, and state Transport Minister and Shiv Sena leader Anil Parab are also taking part in the meeting. 

According to informed sources, several issues are being discussed in the meeting including issues related to farmers, COVID relaxations, extending the timings of restaurants. 

Later in the day, a meeting of the COVID task force is also scheduled to be held which will be presided over by the chief minister.

Problems of transportation were also discussed in the meeting and that the chief minister directed to set up trauma centres near parking lots and check posts in every city.
Punjab CM Charanjit Singh Channi
Punjab CM Charanjit Singh Channi
15:38   Punjab Cabinet opposes BSF jurisdiction extension
Opposing the Centre's move to extend the BSF's area of jurisdiction in the state, the Punjab Cabinet on Monday said law and order is a state subject and the police force is capable of dealing with any situation. 

 The Union government has amended the BSF Act to authorise the force to undertake search, seizure and arrest within a 50 km stretch, up from the existing 15 km, from the international border in Punjab, West Bengal and Assam.

 "We are completely against it. Law and order is a state subject. The state police, which can end terrorism from the state, is capable of preventing any incident," Channi said here after chairing a Cabinet meeting.

 "We oppose it," the chief minister said, adding that the move is not justified. Such decisions should not be taken without consulting the state government, he added. A special Cabinet meeting will be called on this issue, Channi said.
Devotees pray to Ma Durga in Dhaka
Devotees pray to Ma Durga in Dhaka
14:48   B'desh blames Durga puja violence on next polls
As reports of attack on minority Hindus continue to emerge from Bangladesh, its home minister, Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal, on Monday gave assurance that communal harmony will be protected in his country at any cost. 

 He claimed that the violence is aimed at fomenting trouble in his nation with an eye on the next general election.

 The neighbouring country is likely to hold its elections in the end of 2023.

 Speaking to PTI over phone, Khan Kamal said that an investigation is underway to nab the culprits involved in "inciting violence" in his country. He also did not rule out "the involvement on the BNP-Jamaat elements" behind the attacks. 

 "We have taken stern actions to tackle the situation. An investigation is underway; none of the culprits would be spared. I want to assure you that the communal harmony of our country will be protected at any cost. Both the minority and majority communities are citizens of this country and would be protected," Khan Kamal said.

 The minister asserted that Bangladesh would not let the trouble-makers succeed in their mission. "These incidents are aimed at tarnishing the image of our nation and creating tension with an eye on the general election. But we won't allow these forces to succeed," he said. 

 Violence had erupted in pockets of Bangladesh over an alleged blasphemy incident at a Durga Puja pavilion in Cumilla, around 100 km from Dhaka, following which paramilitary forces were deployed in many affected areas.

 Sporadic clashes, however, broke out between the police and the bigots as media reported about vandalisation of Hindu temples and Durga puja venues. At least five persons were killed, and scores of others injured in the clashes.
14:26   Highest post-pandemic air traffic seen on Sunday
Due to constructive policies of the Centre, domestic air traffic reached its highest level on Sunday since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic last year, Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia said on Monday.

 A total of 3,27,923 passengers travelled on 2,372 flights within India on Sunday, he noted. 

 Before the pandemic struck, India's daily domestic air traffic was approximately 4.25 lakh passengers. 

 The Centre had suspended all scheduled domestic flights from March 25, 2020, to May 25, 2020, as part of the coronavirus-induced lockdown.

 "Owing to the constructive policies of the government, domestic air traffic has seen the highest level, post the onset of the pandemic," Scindia tweeted on Monday.

 "The civil aviation sector in India thrives amidst unprecedented challenges, whilst we make every effort to return to normalcy as early as possible," he added. When the government resumed scheduled domestic services on May 25, 2020, it permitted airlines to operate just 33 per cent of their pre-Covid domestic flights.
14:09   Nadda asks BJP leaders to publicise 100 cr Covid vaccination achievement
Bharatiya Janata Party national President JP Nadda on Monday chaired a meeting of the party's national office bearers to chart the organisation's course of action for the upcoming crucial Assembly polls in five states.

According to sources, BJP office bearers were asked to take the achievement of the country globally when the country completes the administration of 100 crores Covid vaccine doses.

The BJP chief also slammed the opposition for misleading the nation on issues that were in the interest of the nation, sources stated.

The leadership also thanked the Prime Minister for making possible the task of 100 crore Covid vaccinations. The BJP chief has asked party members to take this historical achievement to the world.

As per the CoWin portal till 1:45 pm today, 97.9 crore vaccine doses have been administered so far in the country.
Representational image
Representational image
13:55   2 held for forcing woman to remove burqa in Bhopal
Madhya Pradesh police have arrested two persons for allegedly forcing a woman to remove her burqa in Eint Khedi village of Bhopal.

Bhopal Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG) Irshad Wali on Monday told ANI that a video went viral on social media in which a woman is being forced to remove her burqa. 

According to the video circulating on social media, the woman, who was riding pillion on a scooter, was forced to remove her burqa by some unidentified people who claimed that she was a disgrace to their community. 

The woman was also asked to remove her hijab and unmask her face.

Wali informed that the police have registered a case and two people have been arrested in the matter.

Further probe in the matter is underway.
13:31   Prisoners test positive for Covid
20 inmates of Adharwadi Jail in Kalyan near Thane test positive for COVID-19. They have all been admitted to Thane Civil Hospital.
13:15   Jacqueline Fernandez skips 3rd ED summons in PMLA case
Actor Jacqueline Fernandez again skipped on Monday her appearance before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for questioning in connection with a probe into an over Rs 200 crore money-laundering case against alleged conman Sukesh Chandrashekar, officials said. 

 She is understood to have cited professional engagements as the reason for her absence. 

The probe agency may issue her a fresh date. This was the third time that she skipped the ED notice. Fernandez, 36, has appeared before the federal agency once in August and recorded her statement in this case under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

 It is understood that the agency wants to confront her with the main accused in the case involving Chandrashekhar and his actor wife Leena Maria Paul.
File pic
File pic
13:12   Uddhav, Sharad Pawar meeting begins
A meeting between Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray and NCP leader Sharad Pawar is underway at Sahyadri Guest House.

NCP along with Shiv Sena and Congress have formed the government in the state under 'Maha Vikas Aghadi'(MVA) led by Thackeray -- who is also the president of Shiv Sena.

The meeting between the two leaders comes amid several issues being faced by the government and the ruling parties, like the Enforcement Directorate initiating a probe against former home minister Anil Deshmukh after the CBI filed its FIR against the NCP leader on charges of corruption and misuse of official position.
13:03   The story of New India is not being written by Narendra Modi alone
India is, of course, not quite Nazi Germany on the brink of Holocaust, but this concept of 'cumulative radicalisation' is a useful mechanism to explain the country's plunge towards the kind of violence and persecution that has been the hallmark of the Narendra Modi regime. 

The Modi government has not introduced a new system of governance. We have the same Constitution and the same governing institutions. Yet, over these last seven years, it has managed to transform the political culture in such a way that important functionaries in both State and civil society are incentivized to undermine the rule of law and the principles of equal citizenship as long as it appears to be in consonance with the political vision of Modi and his party.

Read the column here. 
12:52   China's missile can perform strikes even via South Pole
More on China's nuke missile: 
CASC's achievement was certainly astounding. It was the first time China has conducted such a feat, and the pace at which Beijing is developing such technologies is the stunning US officials.

This capability bears all the hallmarks of a fractional orbital bombardment system (FOBS). Russia was the first country to develop one in the mid-1960s, before fielding multiple-warhead missiles made its FOBS redundant.

What is a fractional orbital bombardment system? It comprises an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that launches a warhead into low Earth orbit. When the payload approaches its target, an onboard retro rocket detaches the payload and causes it to return to Earth.

The trajectory of an FOBS is very different to that of a ballistic missile, which follows a parabolic curve with its apogee in space.

 FOBS, on the other hand, are more maneuverable and have a flatter trajectory, making them more difficult to track and hit.

Frank Kendall, the US Air Force Secretary, dropped hints last month that China was developing such a weapon. He noted China was making huge advances, including the "potential for global strikes...from space". He said about FOBS: "If you use that kind of an approach, you don't have to use a traditional ICBM trajectory. It's a way to avoid defenses and missile warning systems."

Indeed, a fielded FOBS-type missile and HGV would bypass existing American ballistic missile defenses (BMD).Its early-warning radars are in Alaska, California, Greenland, Massachusetts and the UK, pointing north, east and south. 

Most interceptor missiles are based in Alaska, ready to face an attack coming from the north via the North Pole.

The problem for American BMD is that Chinese FOBS can perform strikes from unexpected directions and vectors - via the South Pole, for example. Furthermore, they would have virtually no limit to their range, and would be highly challenging for US midcourse interceptors to counter since they are designed for parabolic ballistic trajectories that have a known range for each flight stage. Thus, an FOBS would be the most formidable target for a BMD network.

In other words, this Chinese innovation will completely upset the apple cart of American missile defense if it becomes operational.
12:49   China has a secret & dangerous nuke missile
Revelations about an advanced Chinese missile test in August have startled many by the technological know-how displayed by China.

In the test, a space rocket boosted a hypersonic glide vehicle, one capable of carrying a nuclear device, which circled the globe before impacting.

The startling news, presented in a story written by Demetri Sevasopolu and Kathrin Hille, was broken by the Financial Times on 17 October. The hypersonic glide vehicle (HGV) was launched atop a Long March 2C rocket, and it flew through space in a low orbit before impacting about 24 miles from its target. 

China failed to divulge this 78th launch of a Long March 2C rocket, which occurred between other launches on 19 July and 24 August.

This underscores how China's space program falls under the aegis of the People's Liberation Army (PLA). This project is led by the China Academy of Aerospace Aerodynamics, a subdivision of the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC).
12:13   Mix-and-match vaccines highly effective against Covid: Lancet
People who received a first dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine followed by an mRNA vaccine shot had a lower risk of infection compared to those immunised with both doses of the AstraZeneca preventive, according to a nationwide study in Sweden.

Since the use of AstraZeneca's vector-based vaccine against COVID-19 was halted for people younger than 65 years of age due to safety concerns, all individuals in Sweden who had already received their first dose of this vaccine were recommended an mRNA vaccine as their second dose.

"Having received any of the approved vaccines is better compared to no vaccine, and two doses are better than one," said Peter Nordstrom, a professor at Umea University, Sweden. 

"However, our study shows a greater risk reduction for people who received an mRNA vaccine after having received a first dose of a vector-based, as compared to people having received the vector-based vaccine for both doses," Nordstrom said. 

The study, published in The Lancet Regional Health - Europe journal on Monday, is based on nationwide registry data from the Public Health Agency of Sweden, the National Board of Health and Welfare, and Statistics Sweden. 

In the main analysis, about 700,000 individuals were included. During a 2.5-month average follow-up period after the second dose, the study showed a 67 per cent lower risk of infection for the combination of AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccine shots. 

 There was a 79 per cent lower risk of infection for AstraZeneca and Moderna vaccine shots, compared to unvaccinated individuals, the researchers said.

For people having received two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, known as Covishield in India, the risk reduction was 50, they said. These risk estimates were observed after accounting for differences regarding date of vaccination, age of the participants, socioeconomic status, and other risk factors for COVID-19.
12:13   Mix-and-match vaccines highly effective against Covid: Lancet
People who received a first dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine followed by an mRNA vaccine shot had a lower risk of infection compared to those immunised with both doses of the AstraZeneca preventive, according to a nationwide study in Sweden.

Since the use of AstraZeneca's vector-based vaccine against COVID-19 was halted for people younger than 65 years of age due to safety concerns, all individuals in Sweden who had already received their first dose of this vaccine were recommended an mRNA vaccine as their second dose.

"Having received any of the approved vaccines is better compared to no vaccine, and two doses are better than one," said Peter Nordstrom, a professor at Umea University, Sweden. 

"However, our study shows a greater risk reduction for people who received an mRNA vaccine after having received a first dose of a vector-based, as compared to people having received the vector-based vaccine for both doses," Nordstrom said. 

The study, published in The Lancet Regional Health - Europe journal on Monday, is based on nationwide registry data from the Public Health Agency of Sweden, the National Board of Health and Welfare, and Statistics Sweden. 

In the main analysis, about 700,000 individuals were included. During a 2.5-month average follow-up period after the second dose, the study showed a 67 per cent lower risk of infection for the combination of AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccine shots. 

 There was a 79 per cent lower risk of infection for AstraZeneca and Moderna vaccine shots, compared to unvaccinated individuals, the researchers said.

For people having received two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, known as Covishield in India, the risk reduction was 50, they said. These risk estimates were observed after accounting for differences regarding date of vaccination, age of the participants, socioeconomic status, and other risk factors for COVID-19.
12:06   Train movement hit in farmers' rail roko stir
At least 30 locations are affected and eight trains regulated in the Northern Railway Zone, CPRO, Northern Railway said on the farmers' 'Rail roko' agitation.

Farmers in Punjab squatted on rail tracks on Monday morning as part of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha's six-hour 'rail roko' protest demanding the dismissal and arrest of Union Minister Ajay Mishra in connection with the violence in Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur Kheri. 

 A railway official said four sections of the Ferozepur division were blocked by the protesters. 

The Ferozepur-Fazilka section in Ferozepur city and the Ferozepur-Ludhiana section at Ajitwal in Moga were affected, the official said. Demanding the arrest of Union Minister Ajay Mishra, Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee general secretary Sarwan Singh Pandher on Monday demanded said the KMSC will hold protests at 20 places in 11 districts of the state.
11:50   Paytm earmarks Rs 100 cr for festive season ad campaigns
Digital payments and financial services firm Paytm on Monday said it has earmarked Rs 100 crore for marketing campaigns during the ongoing festive season, which include cashback offers, promotion of UPI, postpaid service of 'Buy Now, Pay Later' and wallet businesses. 

 The company has started 'Paytm Cashback Dhamaka' as part of the marketing campaign for users in all districts of India and with special focus on the states of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Karnataka. 

 "The company and its partners will allocate Rs 100 crore for marketing activities during the festive season. These campaigns will be aligned to promote digital payments in India and educate users about Paytm UPI for money transfers, Paytm Wallet and Paytm Postpaid (Buy Now, Pay Later) for spends, to drive financial inclusion across the country," Paytm said in a statement. The campaign will continue till November 14.
11:21   Anti-vaxxer Pooja Bedi gets Covid
Actor-host Pooja Bedi has tested positive for COVID-19 and says she is taking all the necessary precautions. 

 In an Instagram video on Sunday evening, the 51-year-old actor, who has been a vocal anti-vaxxer, informed that her businessman-fiance Maneck Contractor and their house help have also contracted the virus. 

 "I have finally been diagnosed as COVID positive. I chose/choose to stay unvaccinated as it's my personal decision to allow my own natural immunity and alternative healing and wellness practices to accelerate my healing. You do what's right for you. Each to their own. Caution. Not panic," Bedi wrote. 

 The actor, best known for the 1992 hit "Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar", said she is optimistic that she will recover soon. 

 "We are now focusing on getting better, stronger. Hopefully we will be over this in a couple of days. It's a great way for me to relax, take it easy. I was working on long, hard schedules for months and maybe this is God's way of telling me to slow down and take it easy," she wrote. In August, Bedi had slammed the vaccination drive for all, including people with no comorbidities, calling it "illogical and sinister".
11:16   A promise of white winter in Himachal
Not the legendary Shangri-La of James Hilton's Lost Horizon, this snow-covered village is in Spiti.

This is the postcard-pretty Dhankhar village in Lahaul-Spiti district of Himachal Pradesh which received its first snows of the season today.
11:05   Rail roko in Punjab affects train movement
Farmers in Punjab squatted on rail tracks on Monday morning as part of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha's six-hour 'rail roko' protest demanding the dismissal and arrest of Union Minister Ajay Mishra in connection with the violence in Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur Kheri. 

A railway official said four sections of the Ferozepur division were blocked by the protesters. The Ferozepur-Fazilka section in Ferozepur city and the Ferozepur-Ludhiana section at Ajitwal in Moga were affected, the official said. Demanding the arrest of Union Minister Ajay Mishra, Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee general secretary Sarwan Singh Pandher on Monday demanded said the KMSC will hold protests at 20 places in 11 districts of the state. 

In a statement, the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), an umbrella body of farmer unions spearheading the agitation against the Centre's three agri laws, had said "protests will be intensified until justice is secured" in the Lakhimpur Kheri case. 

During the 'rail roko' protest, all train traffic will be stopped from 10 am till 4 pm on Monday, the SKM had said. "To press for its demand for MoS Home Ajay Mishra's dismissal and arrest, so that justice can be secured in the Lakhimpur Kheri massacre, Samyukt Kisan Morcha has announced a nation-wide Rail Roko programme.

"SKM put out a call to its constituents to stop rail traffic for six hours on October 18 between 10 am and 4 pm. The SKM asks for this action to be taken up peacefully, without any destruction and damage of any kind to any railway property," it had said. 

 Four of the eight people who died in the violence on October 3 were farmers, allegedly knocked down by a vehicle carrying BJP workers. Angry farmers then allegedly lynched some people in the vehicles.
10:42   Migrant labourers begin leaving Srinagar
A group of migrant workers leaves from Srinagar after recent incidents of targeted killings of non-Kashmiris by terrorists.

"The situation is getting bad here. We're scared, we've children with us and hence going back to our hometown," says a migrant from Rajasthan.

 Two labourers from Bihar were gunned down by terrorists on Sunday, taking the number of civilians killed in targeted attacks in Jammu and Kashmir this month to 11.

Terrorists opened fire at the labourers at Vanpoh in Kulgam district on Sunday. Another labourer was injured in the incident.

The killings came a day after a gol-gappa hawker from Bihar and a carpenter from Uttar Pradesh were shot dead by terrorists in the Valley.

The hawker, Arbind Kumar Sah, was shot at point-blank range in Srinagar. The carpenter, Sagir Ahmad, was shot dead by terrorists in Pulwama, the police said.

The Vajra, a taser weapon
The Vajra, a taser weapon
10:19   India has new weapons to tackle Chinese
After the Chinese troops used barbed clubs and tasers against the Indian security forces in the Galwan valley clash, Indian security forces have also now been provided non-lethal weapons to tackle the Chinese during violent face-offs along the Line of Actual Control.

A start-up firm in Noida said soon after the Galwan valley clash, it was tasked by the Indian security forces to provide them equipment to be able to tackle the Chinese and they have provided them solutions in the form of non-lethal weapons inspired by the traditional Indian weapons like the 'Trishul' of Lord Shiva. 

"We were asked by the Indian security forces to develop non-lethal equipment after the Chinese used wired sticks and tasers against our soldiers in the Galwan clash. We could also see the Chinese showing their traditional weapons during deployments," Mohit Kumar, Chief Technology Officer of Apasteron Private Limited told ANI.

Showcasing the different equipment, he said a metal road taser with spikes has been developed with the name Vajra and it can be used for both tasing aggressively attacking enemy soldiers in hand to hand combat as well as puncture their bullet-proof vehicles.

The Vajra also has spikes that discharge current under the permissible limits and can make an enemy soldier ineffective during hand to hand combat during face-offs which "happen very often", he said.
10:04   Sensex rallies over 500 pts to hit new peak
Extending its record-setting streak, equity benchmark Sensex rallied over 500 points in opening trade on Monday on account of widespread buying despite a weak trend in global markets.

After touching an all-time high of 61,894.33 in opening deals, the 30-share Sensex was trading 511.54 points or 0.83 per cent higher at 61,817.49.

Similarly, the Nifty surged 157.40 points or 0.86 per cent to 18,495.95.

It touched a new intra-day record of 18,521.10 in initial deals. Infosys was the top gainer in the Sensex pack, rising over 2 per cent, followed by Tata Steel, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, Titan and IndusInd Bank.

On the other hand, Asian Paints, Bajaj Auto, Dr Reddy's and HCL Tech were trading with losses in early deals.

In the previous session on Thursday, the 30-share index settled 568.90 points or 0.94 per cent higher at 61,305.95, and the Nifty surged 176.80 points or 0.97 per cent to a new lifetime closing high of 18,338.55.

Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) were net buyers in the capital market, as they purchased shares worth Rs 1,681.60 crore, as per exchange data.

Market remained shut on Friday on account of Dussehra.

Elsewhere in Asia, bourses in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo were trading with losses in mid-session deals, while Seoul was positive.

Meanwhile, international oil benchmark Brent crude rose 1.07 per cent to $85.77 per barrel.   -- PTI
09:54   Farmers' rail roko begins
Farm law protestors sit on the railway track at Devi Dasspura village in Amritsar following the farmer's union call for 'Rail Roko Andolan' today.  -- ANI
09:41   India's daily Covid count lowest in 230 days
India reported 13,596 new cases in the last 24 hours, which is the lowest in 230 days.

According to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, 19,582 recoveries were recorded in the 24-hour period, taking the cumulative recoveries to 3,34,39,331.

The national Covid recovery rate is currently at 98.12 per cent, which is the highest since March 2020.

India's active caseload stands at 1,89,694, the lowest in 221 days.

The active caseload now accounts for less than 1 per cent of total cases.

It is currently at 0.56 per cent, the lowest since March 2020. -- ANI
Representative image only
Representative image only
09:02   Azaan on loudspeaker: Man attacks 4, including cleric
A man allegedly attacked four people, including a cleric, over the use of louspeakers for azaan in Thanwa Mundiari village in Basti, Uttar Pradesh on Sunday evening, police said.

Circle Officer Kalvari Alok Singh said they received information from the pradhan that there had been a fight between people of two communities in the village.

On reaching there, the police found out that a man attacked the cleric, who going to azaan, with a stick as he was opposed to the use of loudspeakers, the CO said.

When other people tried to rescue the cleric, they were also attacked by the man, who belonged to a different community from them, he said.

Police said a case has been registered in connection with the incident and additional force has been deployed in the village.

The injured people have been hospitalised, they said.   -- PTI
08:32   No order to relocate non-locals: Kashmir IGP
Inspector General of Police (IGP) of Kashmir Vijay Kumar on Sunday clarified that the order asking district police authorities to relocate non-local labourers to the nearest police and army camps is fake.

Earlier in the day, it was allegedly reported that in view of the killings, district police authorities have been directed to bring all non-resident labourers in the valley to the nearest security camps for safety.

The alleged 'advisory' said, 'All non-local labourers in your respective jurisdictions be brought to nearest police/CAPF/Army establishments/camps just now.'

'Order asking district police authorities to relocate non-local labourers to Police or Army camps is fake,' Kumar said in a statement.

This came in wake of a terrorist attack in which two non-local labourers were shot dead and another injured in the Kulgam district of South Kashmir on Sunday.   -- ANI

IMAGE: Security forces at the spot where terrorists shot dead a non-local golgappa seller at Eidgah area in Srinagar on October 16. Photograph: Umar Ganie for