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Farooq Abdullah asks partymen to close ranks, face challenges


We have to live up to the ideals bequeathed to us by the life and struggle of Sher-e-Kashmir.

National Conference (NC) President and member of Parliament from Srinagar Dr. Farooq Abdullah on Tuesday urged the party activists to close ranks and meet the challenges.

Presiding over a meeting of party functionaries in Srinagar, Abdullah said the party cadre’s mood was buoyed after trouncing anti Kashmir forces in the recent DDC elections and that now it was the duty of the party members to live up to their obligations towards the public. He conceded that discipline and unity among the party cadre and functionaries were the reasons that people of Jammu and Kashmir have reposed their faith in us.

Asking the party functionaries to remain in touch with the people and ensure mitigation of issues concerning them in their day to day lives, Abdullah said, “Highs and lows are part of growth. Sometimes we need to journey into the deepest, darkest, scariest, most painful journeys to succeed. Our party has seen many highs and lows, but with people on our side, we have been able to tide over all the “A strong National Conference is an answer to all the problems confronted by our people. The party has braved all challenges and will continue to do so with active support of the people,” he said while interacting with the party functionaries. The party functionaries apprised the party president about the post DDC election scenario and other matters concerning the public and party in general. While interacting with the functionaries, the Party President said serving people should be the prime focus of the party’s district and local units.
He said that the National Conference firmly believes in people to be the fountain head of power.”

We have to live up to the ideals bequeathed to us by the life and struggle of Sher-e-Kashmir.

difficulties. We share a bond with people, and it is the duty of the party rank and file to strengthen it by serving them. The region is passing through a difficult phase, thus making it imperative for the party cadre to close their ranks for meeting the challenges ahead.”




Covid: India continues its streak of low daily new cases


About 70 per cent of the daily new cases are reported from seven states — Kerala, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh.

With 15,968 new coronavirus infections reported in the last 24 hours, India continues its streak of low cases, with overall tally mounting to 1,04,95,147, officials said on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, India recorded 12,584 new cases, lowest single-day figure in over seven months. Before this, the lowest number was recorded on June 18 last year, when India reported 12,881 fresh Covid cases in a day.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said 202 deaths were reported in the past 24 hours taking the death toll to 1,51,529. Since the last 19 days, less than 300 new deaths per day have been recorded in the country.

As per the Ministry data, till now, 1,01,29,111 people have recovered. Currently, there are 2,14,507 active cases. About 43.96 per cent of patients with active infection are in healthcare facilities, while the rest are in home isolation.

The recovery rate stands at 96.51 per cent while the fatality rate is 1.44 as per cent.

The total number of samples tested up to January 12 were 18,34,89,114 including 8,36,227 samples tested on Tuesday, the Indian Council of Medical Research said.

About 70 per cent of the daily new cases are reported from seven states — Kerala, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh.

Meanwhile, the most-awaited mass vaccination drive is slated to begin from January 16, with approval of two vaccines. The Central government plans to vaccinate nearly three crore people in the first phase of the drive.

The vaccine will be offered to one crore healthcare workers, along with two crore frontline and essential workers, 26 crore people above the age of 50 and one crore below 50 with comorbidities.

The Union Health Ministry has said that 1.1 crore ‘Covishield’ and 55 lakh ‘Covaxin’ doses have been procured at the cost of Rs 200 and Rs 206 per dose, respectively.




Dynasty politics major cause of social corruption: PM Modi


“It is imperative for saving our democracy that you join politics. You have a great guide in Swami Vivekananda and if, with his inspiration, our youth joins politics, country will be strengthened,” Modi said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called upon the youth of the country to contribute selflessly and constructively in politics. Speaking at the valedictory function of the second National Youth Parliament Festival today, the Prime Minister remarked that politics is a big medium to bring about meaningful change and like every other field, presence of youth is critical in politics also.

The Prime Minister assured the youth that today, honest people are getting the opportunity to serve, changing the old notion of politics as a site of unscrupulous activities. Today, honesty and performance have become the need of the hour.

In this context, the Prime Minister dwelled at length on the politics of dynasty. He said corruption has become a burden on the people whose legacy was corruption. Country prefers honesty over family connections and candidates also understand that only the good work matters.

He called upon the youth to root out dynastic system. Dynasty politics gives rise to incapability and dictatorship in a democratic setup as these dynasts work towards saving the politics of their family and the family in politics.

“Today, days of winning election by the crutches of a surname are over still this malaise of dynastic politics is far from over. Political dynasty promotes self and family instead of pushing nation first. This is a major cause of social corruption in India,” the Prime Minister said.

The Prime Minister exhorted the youth to come into politics as their entry will ensure the end of dynasty politics.

“It is imperative for saving our democracy that you join politics. You have a great guide in Swami Vivekananda and if, with his inspiration, our youth joins politics, country will be strengthened,” Modi said.




SC stays implementation of farm laws, forms committee to hold talks


The decision to set up the committee is to help to solve the deadlock between the farmer unions and the government.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday has stayed the three farm laws which have led to massive protests near Delhi border. The court has said that a  committee will be set up to understand the ground situation to take over the negotiations with the farmers to end the farmers strike.

Chief Justice SA Bobde said, “We are staying three farm laws until further orders,”

The decision to set up the committee is to help to solve the deadlock between the farmer unions and the government. The bench was headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde and comprising of Justices A S Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian.

Chief Justice SA Bobde said, “These are matters of life and death. We are concerned with laws. We are concerned with lives and property of people affected by the agitation. We are trying to solve the problem in the best way. One of the powers we have is to suspend the legislation,”

He further added, “We want to solve the problem and that’s why we are making the committee. Give the names to us, we will decide,”

The judges told the lawyer representing the protesting farmers, ML Sharma, when he said the farmers would not participate in the committee as Prime Minister Narendra Modi had refused to talk to them.

The apex court said, “We cannot ask the PM anything, he is not a party before us,”

The top court on Monday had come down heavily on the Central government said that it was ‘extremely disappointed’ by the government’s handling of the situation.

CJI SA Bobde had said, “Each one of us we will responsible if anything goes wrong. We don’t want any injuries or blood on our hands,”

The Centre asked for more time referring to the negotiations CJI Bobde said, “We don’t see you are dealing with this issue effectively. We are taking a decision today. Who is going to be responsible for bloodshed if any?”

The protesting farmers who had been agitating against the three farm laws near Delhi border for over a month, have said that a protest march will be organised on January 26, when nation celebrates Republic Day.

The Centre in a reply to the top court said that a disruption to Republic Day parade ‘will be an embarrassment to the nation.’

The government said that the laws were not made hurriedly and were result of deliberations of two decades. Till now, their have been eight rounds of talks between the government and the farmer unions which have not resolved the issue.

The protesting farmers want the government to repeal all the three farm laws as they believe the farm laws leave them vulnerable in the hands of big cooperations.

The next meeting between the farmer union and the government is slated for Friday.




‘Khalistanis’ infiltrated farmers’ protest at Delhi border: Centre tells Supreme Court


As Attorney General KK Venugopal made the statement, the apex court asked him to file an affidavit. The top government lawyer said he would do so by tomorrow along with inputs from the Intelligence Bureau.

The centre has told the Supreme Court that ”Khalistanis” had infiltrated the protests going at the Delhi border against the contentious farm laws.

As Attorney General KK Venugopal made the statement, the Supreme Court asked him to file an affidavit. The top government lawyer said he would do so by tomorrow along with inputs from the Intelligence Bureau.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday has put a stay on the three farm laws which have led to massive protests near Delhi border. The court has said that a committee will be set up to understand the ground situation to take over the negotiations with the farmers to end the farmers strike.

Chief Justice SA Bobde said, “We are staying three farm laws until further orders,”

The decision to set up the committee is to help to solve the deadlock between the farmer unions and the government. The bench was headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde and comprising of Justices A S Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian.

Chief Justice SA Bobde said, “These are matters of life and death. We are concerned with laws. We are concerned with lives and property of people affected by the agitation. We are trying to solve the problem in the best way. One of the powers we have is to suspend the legislation,”

Senior lawyer Harish Salve, appearing for a petitioner supporting the farm laws, told the top court, “Those who organised rallies for Khalistan have put up flags at the protests”.

“We have said that Khalistanis have infiltrated into the protests,” Venugopal said.

The Chief Justice said, “If there is an infiltration by a banned organization, and somebody is making an allegation here on record, you have to confirm it. You file an affidavit by tomorrow.”




First batch of Covishield left Pune today morning amid tight security


Three temperature-controlled trucks rolled out of the Serum Institute gates with their precious cargo shortly before 5 am.

Serum Institute of India’s coronavirus vaccine Covishield’s first batch has left Pune early this morning amid tight security. The development comes four days ahead of the nationwide inoculation drive against coronavirus.

Three temperature-controlled trucks rolled out of the Serum Institute gates with their precious cargo shortly before 5 am. The trucks carried 478 boxes of the vaccines, each box weighing 32 kg, news agency PTI reported quoting an unnamed official.

Before the vehicles left the facility for the Pune airport, a puja was performed.

From the airport, the vaccines are being dispatched to 13 cities.

“Ready get set go! Stand by India! The vaccine to kill the disease is being loaded into the aircraft for distribution all over the country now,” Pune airport tweeted.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a high-level meeting with Chief Ministers and Administrators of all States and Union Territories to review the status and preparedness for COVID-19 vaccination on 11 January 2021, via video conferencing.

Coordinated battle against the virus

The Prime Minister lauded the constant coordination and communication between the Centre and the States, and timely decision making, which has played a big role in the fight against the virus. As a result, the spread of the virus has been contained vis-a-vis several other countries. He also appreciated the State governments for working zealously in this battle.

The Prime Minister said that the country is in a decisive phase of this fight with the start of the world’s biggest vaccination campaign from 16 January. He underlined that it’s a matter of pride that both the vaccines for which Emergency Use Authorization has been given are made in India.

The Chief Ministers expressed happiness at the rollout of vaccination. They discussed some issues and concerns about vaccines, which were clarified in the meeting.




Centre appeals Supreme Court to stop tractor rally of protesting farmers scheduled for January 26


In an affidavit filed in court, the centre cited the constitutional and historic significance of the Republic Day, around which a cluster of events take place.

Amid the farmers protest over the contentious farm laws, the centre has appealed to the Supreme Court to stop a tractor rally of protesting farmers scheduled for January 26, the Republic Day.

As the demands of the farmers didn’t meet, the farmers have planned to hold a huge rally in Delhi on January 26.

In an affidavit filed in court, the centre cited the constitutional and historic significance of the Republic Day, around which a cluster of events take place.

Centre cited in its affidavit the grand rehearsal on January 23, the National Cadet Corps rally of January 28, Beating the Retreat on January 29 and “Martyrs Day” on January 30, and said: “Any disruption or obstruction in the said functions would not only be against the law and order, public order, public interest but would also be a huge embarrassment for the nation”.

The Supreme Court on Monday asked the central government that will it pause the implementation of the three new farm laws that has led to massive farmers near Delhi. The court said that the situation has gone worse and said, “Tell us whether you will put the laws on hold or else we will do it. What’s the ego here?”

The apex court’s sharp remark came at a hearing on petitions challenging the three farm laws and the ongoing farmers protests at Delhi border, who have been agitating for more a month.

The bench led by Chief Justice S A Bobde slammed the Centre asking if the government was a ‘part of the solution or the problem.’ CJI Bobde said, “Each one of us we will responsible if anything goes wrong. We don’t want any injuries or blood on our hands.”

The government has held eight round of talks with farmer unions but the deadlock has continued. The farmers have demanded that the government repeal all the three farm laws as they believe that they are left vulnerable in the hands of big cooperations.

The next meeting between the farmer union and the government is slated for Friday.




India records lowest single-day figure of coronavirus cases in over seven months


The recovery rate stands at 96.43 per cent while the fatality rate is 1.44 as per cent.

With 12,584 new coronavirus infections reported in the last 24 hours on Tuesday, India recorded the lowest single-day figure in over seven months taking India’s overall tally to 1,04,79,179.

Before this, the lowest number was recorded on June 17 last year, when India reported 12,881 fresh Covid cases in a day.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said 167 deaths were reported in the past 24 hours taking the death toll to 1,51,327.

Since the last 18 days, less than 300 new deaths per day have been recorded in the country.

As per the ministry data, till now, 1,01,11,294 people have recovered. Currently, there are 2,16,558 active cases.

The recovery rate stands at 96.43 per cent while the fatality rate is 1.44 as per cent.

The total number of samples tested up to January 11 were 18,26,52,887 including 8,97,056 samples tested on Monday, the Indian Council of Medical Research said.

About 82.25 per cent of the daily new cases were being reported from nine states — Kerala, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Bihar and Gujarat.

Meanwhile, the most-awaited mass vaccination drive is slated to begin from January 16, with approval of two vaccines. The Central government plans to vaccinate nearly three crore people in the first phase of the drive.

The vaccine will be offered to one crore healthcare workers, along with two crore frontline and essential workers, 26 crore people above the age of 50 and one crore below 50 with comorbidities.




Union Minister Shripad Naik is now stable and under observation: Goa Chief Minister


Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Monday and asked him to ensure the best medical treatment for Naik.

Union Minister of State for Defence Shripad Naik, who was seriously injured after his car hit a tree in Ankola in Karnataka on Monday night, is now stable and under observation, said Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant.

“His condition was a bit critical, but he is very much stable now. There is no risk to his life. He is under stable and under observation. He will have to undergo two minor operations. He has suffered two fractures,” Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said.

Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Monday and asked him to ensure the best medical treatment for Naik. Naik’s wife and an aide, who were travelling with him, succumbed to their injuries.

After he was administered first-aid at a local hospital in Ankola, Naik was rushed to the Goa Medical College, the state’ apex health facility late on Monday night.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh too spoke to Sawant and offered any assistance required, including air-lifting the minister, who is an MP from North Goa.

Singh tweeted, “I am shocked and extremely saddened by the news of Minister of State for Defence Shripad Naik being injured in a road accident. I spoke to Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant. The state government is ensuring best treatment for Shripadji. I pray for the speedy recovery of Shripadji.”

According to Sawant, the Union Defence Minister had also offered the services of an air ambulance for shifting him to the national capital for treatment.

“The Defence Minister has assured that he will send across an air ambulance if required. The PM has just sought a follow up from me. According to doctors who are treating him, there is no need to airlift him,” Sawant also said.

After talking to the PM and the Union Defence Minister, the Goa CM had directed the doctors of the medical college to ensure best treatment for the minister.

Naik was travelling by car along with his wife and an aide in the north Kannada district as part of a private visit when his car overturned near Yallapura.




‘Tractors and tanks would roll together on Delhi roads during Republic Day parade’: Rakesh Tikait


This is a bid of the leadership of the farmers’ agitation to ensure maximum participation in Delhi on 26 January and intensify the movement in western UP as well.

Farmer leaders, under the banner of Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU), have given a call to the farmers of western UP to reach Delhi on January 26 to participate in the ongoing movement of farmers against the 3 farm bills.

This is a bid of the leadership of the farmers’ agitation to ensure maximum participation in Delhi on 26 January and intensify the movement in western UP as well.

BKU’s national spokesperson Rakesh Tikait appealed to farmers to ensure their overwhelming participation in the farmers’ movement in Delhi on January 26, when the country would be celebrating Republic Day. Tikait was in Baraut town of district Baghpat on Sunday evening to support the farmers sitting there on a dharna against the three controversial farm bills since December 17.

Addressing the farmers, Tikait said that tractors and tank would roll together on the roads of Delhi during the Republic Day parade this year.

Rakesh Tikait has been leading the farmers’ agitation at Delhi-Ghazipur border since the beginning.

He advised the farmers to remain united in this “decisive battle” against the controversial farm bills. “Farmers feed the country and their sons are guarding our borders,” he said adding that this country is of farmers as well and they are all true patriots hence have every right to participate in the Republic Day.

“We are ready for the decisive battle on farm bills and we will sing National Anthem on the Republic Day if government uses tear gas and water cannons on the farmers,” said Tikait.

BKU President Naresh Tikait also appealed to the farmers to remain united and announced that farmers will march in the Republic Day parade on Rajpath holding our flags in their hands. He said that farmers are now preparing to ensure their participation on January 26.

National Vice-President of BKU (Bhanu) Ch Diwakar Singh also claimed that the farmers are all gearing up for participation in the movement on January 26 in Delhi. “We will show our strength on that day,” he said.

Farmers under the aegis of BKU (Bhanu) have been sitting on Dharna at Chilla border of Noida for over a month.




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