News in Brief

BY | Wednesday, 24 August, 2022

PM Narendra Modi inaugurates 2,600-bed hospital in Haryana’s Faridabad

Faridabad: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday inaugurated a 2,600-bed private hospital here that is equipped with cutting-edge technology, including a centralised fully-automated laboratory, in what will be a major boost to healthcare infrastructure in the National Capital Region (NCR). Speaking on the occasion, Modi said India is a country where healthcare and spirituality are closely linked. He added that COVID-19 was a perfect example of a successful spiritual-private partnership that helped create awareness and implement the world’s largest vaccination drive. The state-of-the-art Amrita Hospital, built on a sprawling 130-acre campus with sustainability in mind, has a dedicated seven-storey research block and has been constructed over a period of six years under the auspices of the Mata Amritanandmayi Math. Once fully operational, the hospital with 81 specialties is billed to be the largest private hospital in Delhi-NCR and the country, its officials had earlier said.


Outgoing Bihar speaker did not want a Dalit to preside over House, says his deputy

Patna: Bihar Assembly Deputy Speaker Maheshwar Hazari on Wednesday accused outgoing Speaker Vijay Kumar Sinha of having insulted Dalits by denying him the opportunity to conduct proceedings of the House after stepping down. Sinha, after announcing his resignation and adjourning proceedings till 2 pm, had said that Narendra Narayan Yadav of the JD(U) shall be in chair in the post-lunch session. Hazari, also of the JD(U), was later seated inside the speaker’s chamber by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav, among others. Narayan Yadav, however, took the chair after lunch and announced that the deputy speaker shall preside over the session. The deputy speaker subsequently adjourned the proceedings for 20 minutes. Key businesses like election of a new speaker and debate on a motion of confidence moved by the new ‘Mahagathbandhan’ government were scheduled during the day.


BJP offered Rs 20 crore each to 4 MLAs to switch sides: AAP

New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said some of his MLAs have approached him alleging that they have been threatened and offered bribes to break the party and the AAP’s political affairs committee will meet on Wednesday to take stock of the situation. A couple of days back, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia who is facing a CBI probe in connection with alleged corruption in the implementation of Excise Policy 2021-22, had claimed that he was offered the CM’s post by the BJP and a withdrawal of all cases if he quit AAP. National spokesperson of the party and Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh said the legislators – Ajay Dutt, Sanjeev Jha, Somnath Bharati and Kuldeep – have been approached by leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) with whom they have “friendly relations”.


JD(U)’s Devesh Chandra Thakur files nomination, Bihar council chairman’s election on Thursday

Patna: Senior JD(U) leader Devesh Chandra Thakur on Wednesday filed his nomination papers for election to the post of chairman of the Bihar legislative council. Thakur, who is serving his fourth term as an MLC, filed his nomination papers in presence of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and former CM Rabri Devi, both of whom are members of the House, besides Deputy CM Tejashwi Prasad Yadav and a number of other leaders of the ‘Mahagathbandhan’. According to the Vidhan Parishad secretariat, voting will take place on Thursday. The chairman’s post has been lying vacant since May 2017 when Awadhesh Narain Singh, a veteran BJP leader, completed a five-year term.


Goa Police conducting detailed probe into Sonali Phogat’s death: CM Sawant

Panaji: Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Wednesday said the state police were conducting a detailed investigation into the death of BJP leader Sonali Phogat. Considering the opinion of doctors and Goa Director General of Police Jaspal Singh, it preliminary looks like she died due to a heart attack, Sawant told reporters. Phogat (42), the BJP leader from Haryana who had found fame on Tik Tok, was “brought dead” at the St Anthony Hospital at Anjuna in North Goa on Tuesday morning, a police official earlier said, adding that she died of a suspected heart attack. Singh said there is no foul play in the case, even as Phogat’s family questioned the circumstances of her death and opposition parties in Haryana demanded a CBI probe. There are no external injury marks on the body, the DGP had said, adding that the postmortem report will reveal the exact cause of the death. The postmortem is scheduled to be conducted at the Goa Medical College and Hospital on Wednesday.


HC orders fresh assessment of security threat of protectees in Punjab

Chandigarh: The Punjab and Haryana High Court has ordered fresh assessment of security threat of protectees after several protected individuals in Punjab had approached it against the withdrawal and de-categorization of their security cover. While hearing a batch of 45 petitions filed among others by former Punjab Deputy Chief Minister O P Soni, the court said it cannot lose sight of the fact that decategorisation of security may sometimes prompt inimical anti-social elements to take drastic step to overcome the decategorised security in order to attack the protectee. The court made it clear that the existing security cover provided to the protectees, even under the orders of the court, shall remain in force till fresh assessment is made. The bench further observed that demand of security cannot be on the basis of displaying an authority of symbol or to flaunt the status as a very important person. No privileged class can be created on the State’s expense by using money of taxpayers, it said.


Mayawati slams SP chief Akhilesh Yadav for meeting jailed party MLA

Lucknow: BSP president Mayawati on Wednesday slammed Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav for meeting a party MLA inside Azamgarh jail and alleged that it shows the party protects criminals. She also targeted Yadav for not offering the same support to party’s jailed Muslim leaders. Yadav had visited the Azamgarh jail on Monday to meet party MLA Ramakant Yadav who is lodged there in a 20-year-old rioting case. “.. is it unreasonable for various organisations and common people to ask the SP chief why he does not go to jail to meet Muslim leaders when he has himself accused the BJP government in UP of implicating and putting SP leaders in jail in fake cases?” she tweeted.


Maha: Face-off between Shinde faction, opposition legislators in Vidhan Bhavan premises

Mumbai: An MLA from Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde’s Shiv Sena faction and a legislator of the NCP virtually came to blows in the Vidhan Bhavan premises here on Wednesday after shouting slogans against each other. The NCP MLAs carried carrots on the steps of the legislature building in a bid to taunt the ruling Shiv Sena-BJP coalition. The Shinde faction MLAs tried to snatch the carrots from the NCP legislators, raising tension between them. Sena MLA Mahesh Shinde (from the CM’s faction) and NCP MLC Amol Mitkari then virtually came to blows at the steps of the legislature building. Some legislators from the two sides then intervened and diffused the tension. Earlier, legislators of the ruling BJP and those from the Shinde faction staged a protest in the Vidhan Bhavan premises targeting former CM Uddhav Thackeray and his son Aaditya Thackeray.


Hurry potters, 14 lakh ‘diyas’ needed for Ayodhya Deepotsava in two months

Ayodhya: Potter’s wheels are turning furiously in villages around the holy city to meet an expected record-breaking demand for 14 lakh earthen lamps that would light up the banks of holy Saryu, two months from now. A day ahead of Diwali, the Uttar Pradesh government sponsors the Deepotsava’ – a festival of lights – in which volunteers from colleges line a stretch of the riverbank in Ayodhya with ‘diyas’. At dusk, they are lit, presenting a grand spectacle. The Ayodhya tradition began with Yogi Adityanath’s BJP government. Beginning with 51,000 diyas in 2017, the number went up to 4.10 lakh in 2019, over 6 lakh in 2020 and more than 9 lakh last year, setting a new Guinness World Record. This time, on October 23, the organisers say the target is likely to be 14 lakh. Potters in Jaisinghpur village are already at work, anticipating large orders. This year, potters are expecting to sell their diyas for Rs 1.50 a piece compared to last year’s one rupee to Rs 1.20.


TMC removes its Tripura president Subal Bhowmik

Agartala: The Trinamool Congress removed its Tripura state president Subal Bhowmik on Wednesday amid speculations that he may return to the BJP. Bhowmik, a former MLA from Sonamura, had crossed over to the TMC from BJP in July last year. The TMC announced that former West Bengal minister Rajib Banerjee, the party’s in-charge for Tripura, and Rajya Sabha MP Susmita Dev will look after the functioning of the party till a new state president is appointed. Bhowmik, who was appointed TMC’s state president in April, is likely to join the BJP during its president JP Nadda’s visit to Tripura on 28 August. He was the BJP’s state vice-president and played a crucial role in toppling the Left regime of 25 years in the 2018 assembly elections. However, he quit the BJP in July last year amid differences with then Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb.


Policeman arrested for killing pregnant wife in J-K’s Kathua

Kathua/Jammu: A Special Police Officer (SPO) who allegedly bludgeoned his pregnant wife to death was arrested in Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir, police said on Wednesday. SPO Mohan Lal, who was posted in district police lines Kathua and was on leave for the past three days, brutally killed his wife Asha Devi (32), a mother of two daughters, at their Dharalta residence in the Billawar area on Tuesday morning following an argument over some family matter, officials said. The woman was eight months pregnant and her baby had also died in her womb. Taking serious note of the incident, Senior Superintendent of Police, Kathua, Ramesh Chander Kotwal constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT) headed by a deputy superintendent of police to arrest the accused who had fled the scene after committing the crime. The officials said Lal was arrested from the Billawar area late Tuesday night and is being questioned by police.


Pakistan to seek international help for flood relief

Islamabad: Cash-strapped Pakistan government has decided to seek international help to undertake relief and rehabilitation efforts in parts of the country inundated by devastating floods that has claimed over 800 lives and left thousands homeless. The decision was made on Tuesday during an urgent briefing on the flood emergency by the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA). Planning minister Ahsan Iqbal who chaired the meeting said that 830 were killed and at least 1,348 injured, while thousands are left homeless across the country. Prime Minister Sheh­baz Sharif has announced Rs 25,000 to flood-affected people while appealing to the nation to extend help. He said the government was providing Rs 37.2 billion to the people in aid. Floods triggered by the monsoon rains have killed at least 830 people and destroyed properties and crops worth billions of rupees since July. The seasonal rains continue to wreak havoc, especially in Balochistan and Sindh province, the worst hit areas.


Lakshya Sen enters pre-quarters of BWF World Championships

Tokyo: Young Indian badminton ace Lakshya Sen sailed into the men’s singles pre-quarterfinals with a straight game win over Spain’s Luis Penalver in the BWF World Championships here on Wednesday. Commonwealth Games champion Sen won his second round match 21-17 21-10, taking 72 minutes to complete the formality. Earlier, the Indian men’s doubles pair of M R Arjun and Dhruv Kapila moved to the pre-quarterfinals but Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy made a second round exit from the prestigious tournament. The unseeded Arjun and Kapila upstaged eighth seeds and last edition’s bronze medallists Kim Astrup and Anders Skaarup Rasmussen of Denmark in their second round match. Ponnappa and Sikki, on the other hand, lost to top seeds Chen Qing Chen and Jia Yi Fan of China. The other women’s doubles pairing of Pooja Dandu and Sanjana Santosh’s also crashed out of the tournament, going down to third seeds Lee So Hee and Shin Seung Chan of Korea.


Netflix sets 23 September premiere for Jamtara: Sabka Number Ayega S2

Mumbai: Drama series Jamtara: Sabka Number Ayega will return with its second season on 23 September, streaming platform Netflix announced Wednesday. The show, which was launched in 2020, follows young school drop-outs who incept an elaborate phishing scam raking in fortunes, only to be intercepted by the police and local politicians. Produced by Viacom18 Studios’ Tipping Point, the second season “will bring together a concoction of politics and revenge, paired with an unquenchable thirst for power,” the streamer said in a press release. Jamtara: Sabka Number Ayega season two is directed by Soumendra Padhi from a script penned by Trishant Srivastava. Ajit Andhare is attached as a producer on the project.



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