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Last Updated : Jan 21 2021 10:19PM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
Centre urges States and UTs to strategize speedy implementation of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana for rapid urbanisation            PM Modi to interact with beneficiaries of COVID vaccination drive in Varanasi tomorrow through video conferencing            Consignments of COVID-19 vaccines from India reach Bangladesh and Nepal            Five perish in fire at Serum Institute of India; Authorities say vaccine stock is safe and production will continue            Indian Army and Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers sign MoU to boost use of indigenous spare parts under Atma Nirbhar Bharat           

Text Bulletins Details

Morning News

0830 HRS


  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi says New Education Policy will transform job seekers into job creators.

  • Death toll in spurious liquor tragedy rises to 86 in Punjab; Enforcement Directorate begins probe.

  • Odisha allows private labs to conduct COVID-19 tests.

  • WHO says, Coronavirus pandemic is likely to be prolonged.

  • European Union calls for more united efforts from its member countries against China.

  • Members of Indian men's and women's hockey teams for Tokyo Olympics to join national camp in Bengaluru from Tuesday.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that the New Education Policy (NEP) will transform job seekers into job creators. Addressing Smart India Hackathon 2020, he said the NEP is not just a policy but a compilation of aspirations of all the Indians.

Prime Minister gave a mantra to students and said, never stop three things in life - learning, questioning and solving. The Prime Minister said that the time has come for increased focus on learning, research and innovation in the field of education. He said, the 21st century is the era of knowledge and this is exactly what the New Education Policy does. The Prime Minister said we are focussing on the quality of education in the country.

Elaborating on the Centre’s attempts to transform the content and method of imparting education in the country, Mr Modi said, the New Education Policy emphasizes on inter-disciplinary study, which will ensure that the focus is on what the student wants to learn instead of being compelled to learn. Mr Modi also said that India is shifting from burden of school bags to boon of learning. He said, Languages of India will develop more due to the changes brought about in the education policy. This will not only increase India’s knowledge but will also increase the unity among its people, the Prime Minister told the students participating in the Smart India Hackathon 2020. This year, around 10,000 students are participating in the hackathon. The grand finale of Smart India Hackathon 2020 (Software) is being held from August 1 to 3. He also interacted with students and enquired about their projects ranging from women’s hygiene products to crime detection technologies to water harvesting. This year, over 4.5 lakh entries were received for the competition.


Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat has said that New Education Policy (NEP) 2020 will transform the process of learning in the country and will help armed forces to identify youth from rural areas for soldiering. He said, the multi-entry and exit schemes at the college level will be a welcome change for our youth. The Chief of Defence Staff said, teaching faculties will have to prepare for this change because they have to lead from the front. Union Cabinet had on Wednesday, cleared the NEP 2020 proposing multiple changes in school and higher education.


Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has launched 'Vidyarthi Vigyan Manthan, 2020-21. This initiative is a national programme for popularizing science among school students of Class 6th to 11th. It was designed to identify the bright minds with a scientific aptitude among the student community.

Appreciating the new National Educational Policy, he said, under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, this policy has been introduced which will create a world class knowledge centre in India. 


Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank has said that the Smart India Hackathon (SIH) provides confidence to the students to stand up like a warrior and decide on the path they want to take. Speaking at the SIH 2020, he said, under PM e-Vidya, online classes using technology have been started. He said we are trying to use innovation and technology in the National Education Policy and initiated the National Education Technology Forum. Education Minister said, ideas coming up during the SIH will be implemented on the ground level.


Union Home Minister Amit Shah inaugurated a two-day international webinar on the theme of 'Lokmanya Tilak - Swaraj to Self-reliant India' organized by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations on the 100th death anniversary of the great freedom fighter Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak. In his address, Mr Shah said that Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak played a key role in the making of the Indian Independence movement complete in letter and spirit. The Home Minister said that the slogan of 'Swaraj is my birthright and I shall have it' given by Lokmanya Tilak, will always be written in golden letters in the history of the Indian Independence Movement. Mr Shah further said that Tilak’s idea of India as a nation, Indian culture and Indian customs are equally relevant today. Appealing to the youth, Home Minister said that if one wants to know the glorious history of India and Indian culture, then Bal Gangadhar Tilak’s writings will have to be understood.


In the run up to 74th Independence day, we bring you a special story about Swachh Bharat mission.

The Swachh Bharat Mission has played a  crucial role in ensuring sanitation in the country. The mission has focused on rural and urban areas separately.

Since the launch of the mission in 2014, more than ten crore individual toilets have been constructed and as a result, rural areas in all the states have declared themselves Open Defecation Free(ODF) as on 2nd October, 2019. To ensure that the open defecation free behaviours are sustained, no one is left behind, and that solid and liquid waste management facilities are accessible, the Swachh Bharat Mission (Rural) has moved towards its second phase which is also called ODF-Plus. Talking to AIR News, Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat said, it was not only the matter of building toilets but to bring changes in the behaviour of 60 crore people and provide dignity into the lives of 30 crore women.

The Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban) has also made significant progress in the area of both sanitation and solid waste management. Over 4324 Urban Local Bodies have been declared ODF in the country so far. Over 66 lakhs individual household toilets and over 6 lakhs community and public toilets have been constructed or are under construction. In the area of solid waste management, 96 per cent of wards have 100 per cent door-to door collection while 66 per cent of the total waste generated is being processed.


Now moving on to our special series on development and empowerment of people in the Union Territory of Jammu kashmir & and ladakh.

In Jammu and Kashmir, the Panchayat elections have strengthened the Panchayati Raj Institutions in the union territory. The elected public representatives have been empowered for ensuring proper rural development in their respective areas. They have been given training under centrally sponsored scheme of Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan for the capacity building to enhance capabilities of Panchayats for inclusive local governance.

Moreover, in order to have a proper redressal of public Grievances, a Complaint Box has been placed in every Panchayat of the Union Territory enabling the people to register their Grievances and complaints with the government. The instructions in this regard had been issued by Lieutenant Governor Girish Chandra Murmu while chairing the first meeting of the Administrative Council to review the functioning of "Public Grievances Mechanism" in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. The move was aimed to grant the opportunity to the people to lodge complaints besides providing valuable suggestions for the effective implementation and the fair execution of developmental schemes at rural and far-flung areas of the Union Territory.

"The grievences received from the people across the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir are attended and redressed in a time bound manner which are rigorously monitored by the Lieutenant Governor's Grievances Redressal Cell. The Awaaz-e-Awaam Portal of Jammu and Kashmir also includes a mechanism for registering and monitoring the grievances received from Public Outreach Meetings by the Advisors. The grievances are received through different means including "By Post" and also can be brought to the LG's Grievances Cell, by the complainant personally. It is worthwhile to mention here that after the integration of Centralized Public Grievance Redress & Monitoring (CPGRAMS) with Awaaz-e-Awaam, the grievances and complaints received on CPGRAM from across the country is automatically getting directed to Awaaz-e-Awaam. This is Sunil Koul for AIR News from Srinagar".


In Uttar Pradesh, preparations for foundation laying ceremony of Ram Temple are in full swing at Ayodhya. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will participate in the Bhoomi Pujan on 5th of this month.

"As the date of  Bhoomi Poojan  of the temple of Maryaada Purushottam Lord  Sri Ram is approaching near, people from all walks of life are seen very happy and  enthused in the town. Diwali of earthen lamps will be lit at homes on the occasion for which potters are happily and enthusiastically preparing Diyas. One Potter Vinod says whole the village is ready to celebrate the occasion.

The gardener and supplier of flowers Nitish Kumar says that he is happy and feel proud to serve the temple of Lord Sri Ram in Ayodhya.

The buildings on main roads are  being richly decorated in yellow colour in the town. Apart from this several teams are painting Rangolis and figures based on  various references  and incidents in Ramayan on roadside walls. With Rajendra Soni in Ayodhya, this is MS Yadav AIR News Lucknow".


The Government has rejected the claims of a twiter user who posted the image of luxurious interior of an aircraft claiming that it is Prime Minister Narendra Modi's official aircraft. In a tweet, Press Information Bureau said the photo is of a private Dreamliner model by Boeing 787 and not of the Prime Minister's aircraft.


Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu expressed sadness over the accident in Hindustan Shipyard Limited in Visakhapatnam. In a tweet today, Mr. Naidu paid his heartfelt condolences to bereaved families and prayed for the early recovery of the injured.


In a bid to augment the testing facilities, Odisha government has allowed private hospitals, nursing homes and laboratories to conduct COVID-19 tests through Rapid Antigen and RT-PCR methods. The government issued a separate set of guidelines for conducting sample tests both under Rapid Antigen and RT-PCR. The private health establishments have to abide by the ICMR norms.The notification said, the sample test results should first be informed to the state authorities before being released to the person whose test was conducted.

For Rapid Antigen tests, the private bodies can charge a maximum of 450 rupees, while the price for RT-PCR tests is fixed at 2,200 rupees per test. The nursing homes, hospitals and laboratories should be mandatorily registered under the Odisha Clinical Establishment (control & regulation) Act, 1990. The manpower to be deployed for the purpose must be trained properly in consultation with the chief district medical and public health officers.


In Madhya Pradesh, there will be no new lockdown now. State government has clarified that apart from the previously announced lockdown, new lockdown will not be imposed now.

The number of COVID-19 cases in the state climbed to 32 thousand 614 after 808 new cases were reported in the past 24 hours. With nine patients succumbing to the infection during the day, the death toll has risen to 876.

On the other hand, 698 coronavirus patients were discharged from the hospitals yesterday taking the number of recovered cases in the state to 22 thousand 969.

"From now on there will be no lockdown in any district of the state. If need for lockdown arises in any district due to unavoidable reasons, permission will have to be sought from the state level. Madhya Pradesh is ranked 15th in the country in both active and passive cases. According to the state health bulletin, Madhya Pradesh has 8 thousand 769 active cases. Testing in the state is continuously increasing and 16 thousand 198 samples were taken in the state past day. Meanwhile, in the second phase of the Kill Corona campaign, theme “Sankalp ki chain jodo, Corona ki chain todo” has launched in the state till August 14. This is mainly an awareness campaign under which people will be made aware to wear masks and adhering to physical distancing compulsorily.-Sanjeev Sharma, AIR News, Bhopal".


In Gujarat, the total number of covid-19 recoveries has crossed 45,000 mark with another 875 Covid-19 patients were discharged from various hospitals across the state yesterday. So far a total of 45,782 covid-19 patients have been discharged in the state. Meanwhile, 1,136 fresh coronavirus cases were reported yesterday in the state taking the tally to 62,574. The state health department said with the death of 24 COVID-19 patients, the death toll due to the pandemic reached 2,465.


In Bihar positive cases of Coronavirus infection patients are increasing rapidly. 3,521 fresh cases have been reported. This is the highest reported in a day so far,taking the tally upto 54,508. Among those tested positive are Rajya Sabha MP RCP Singh and Patna DM. Maximum number of positive cases 9,358 are from Patna followed by 2,638 in Bhagalpur and 2,459 in Muzaffarpur. 35 thousand 473 patients were recovered and 18 thousand 722 patients are undergoing treatment in various hospitals. 312 people so far died due to Corona Recovery rate is 65 percent.


Tamil Nadu Health Minister Dr C Vijayabhaskar has warned private hospitals not to overcharge patients for Covid-19 treatment. Talking to reporters in Pudhukottai, he said the upper ceiling for the treatment in private clinics has been already fixed by the Government. Meanwhile, the total Covid-19 infection in Tamil Nadu has crossed two lakh fifty one thousand with more than five thousand eight hundred people testing positive yesterday.

"The state health minister’s warning to private clinics comes in the wake of reports of a private hospital in Chennai charging about fourteen lakh rupees from a patient for Covid-19 treatment. Its approval to treat patients for the viral infection has been withdrawn by the state health department after finding the charges as credible. The minister said the state run health insurance cover can be availed for Covid-19 treatment. Though he expressed concern about overcharging, he also noted that many private players are offering good services and charge justifiable rates. He emphasised that the Government Hospitals in the state are maintaining high standards in treating the viral disease. Jayasingh, AIR News, Chennai".


In Karnataka, the covid-19 cases are spiking everyday with 5,172 new cases yesterday, taking the total to 1,29,287. 3,860 people recovered and were discharged from various hospitals in the State and the total discharges has gone up to 53,648. The State recovery rate stands at 41.52 percent and the mortality rate is 1.87 percent.

"Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister Dr. C.N. Ashwath Narayana has expressed displeasure at laxity shown by booth level workers vested with the responsibility of conducting door to door survey to identify vulnerable sections of the population and conduct Covid test. Reviewing the containment efforts in the West zone of Bengaluru city yesterday, he has asked senior officers of city corporation, to take disciplinary action against such block level workers. Dr. Ashwathnaraya was also  expressed unhappy over the attitude of a few private hospitals for denying treatment to Covid patients sent by the government. He directed the Corporation  officicals to file criminal cases against such hospitals in Bengaluru. He assured all the frontline warriors of all possible incentive by the government. R.MURTHY, AIR NEWS BENGALURU."


India has registered the lowest COVID-19 mortality rate at the global level. The mortality rate has further declined to 2.15 per cent in the country. It is the lowest figure since the first lockdown was imposed due to Corona virus pandemic.

The Health and Family Welfare Ministry said, a total of 10 lakh 94 thousand 374 people have recovered in the country so far and 36 thousand 569 recoveries were reported in the past 24 hours. With this, the recovery rate reached to 64.52 per cent.


Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan has announced the successful completion of pan-India 1,000 genome sequencing of SARS-CoV-2. He also highlighted that 16 vaccine candidates are in different stages of development.

The Minister held a meeting with Department of Biotechnology and reviewed the COVID-19 activities of DBT, Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council.

The Health Minister said, the information in the database will improve our understanding about the behaviour of the virus which will help in containing the transmission of COVID-19. Dr. Harsh Vardhan also highlighted that the BCG Vaccine is undergoing Phase- 3 trial and Zydus Cadila DNA Vaccine is in phase I and II phase trial stage.


Participating in AIR live phone in programme on Covid-19, Dr Madhur Yadav, Professor of Medicine at Lady Hardinge Medical College said that people should avoid going outside unless there is an emergency to reduce the chances of their exposure to the virus.


In our series 'Expert Speak' on All India Radio, we bring you the views of the leading medical experts on COVID-19. Talking to AIR News, Dr. Uma Kumar, Head of Rheumatology Department, AIIMS suggested to the people to follow social distancing, hand hygiene and cough etiquettes.

President of Public Health Foundation of India, Dr K Srinath Reddy said India is in a much better position as compared to rest of the world as far as the COVID-19 cases are concerned  and the measures taken are yielding results.


The World Health Organization has warned that the coronavirus pandemic is likely to be prolonged. The statement comes after emergency committee of WHO met to evaluate the crisis six months after sounding the international alarm. The committee also warned of the risk of response fatigue given the socio-economic pressures on countries. It highlighted the importance of sustained community, national, regional, and global response efforts.


Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said that more than one million stranded Indians have now benefited from Vande Bhart Mission. In a tweet, Mr Puri said, more than 9 lakh Indians have returned to India through various means and more than 1 lakh 16 thousand have flown out to various countries since 6th May of this year.


The death toll in Punjab spurious liquor tragedy has risen to 86. Tarn Taran alone accounted for 63 deaths, followed by 12 in Amritsar and 11 in Gurdaspur’s Batala. Chief Minister Amarinder Singh suspended seven excise officials and six policemen. State government also announced a compensation of 2 lakh rupees for each of the families of the deceased.

Enforcement Directorate (ED) has begun investigations into the Majha tragedy. The ED has started collecting information about the financial transactions by those named or booked in the case. The recoveries and assets of the key accused need to be thoroughly probed.


European Union has called for a more united approach from its 27 member countries against an authoritarian China. In an interview to German media, EU’s High Representative for foreign and security policy, Josep Borrell said, China has become more aggressive in its neighbourhood, especially in the South China Sea or on the border with India. He said, Chinese leaders did not hesitate to leave aside international commitments with the imposition of the Hong Kong National Security Law. Borrell also called for a more coordinated approach among the EU, US and other democratic powers like India. He said, EU and US should be at the heart of this effort, but we should also be working closely with Japan, India, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and others. Pondering steps to deal with China, Borell said, we can consider measures such as extending visas for Hong Kong citizens, restricting student exchanges with China, banning exports of tear gas.


Members of the Indian men's and women's hockey teams bound for Tokyo Olympics will join the national camp at SAI's National Centre of Excellence (NCOE) in Bengaluru from Tuesday. The decision was taken by Sports Authority of India (SAI) after formal permission was received from the state government to begin training in Bengaluru. The athletes, coaches and support staff, who were on a home break, will join the camp on August 4 and undergo the mandatory 14-day quarantine inside the campus. Considering the rising number of COVID-19 cases in Bengaluru, the permission from the state government has been given subject to all arriving athletes, coaches and support staff adhering to institutional quarantine protocols issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Health and Government of Karnataka.


Take a look at today's weather .

The National Capital Delhi may experience generally cloudy sky with light rain or drizzle. The minimum temperature was recorded at 28 degree Celsius and maximum is expected to be around 37 degrees.

Mumbai will have a generally cloudy sky with moderate rain. The city witnessed a minimum temperature of 26 degree Celsius and will have a maximum of around 33 degrees.

In Chennai, the temperature will hover between 25 and 33 degree Celsius. Generally cloudy sky with light rain or drizzle expected in the city.

Kolkata will have a partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers. The city recorded a minimum temperature of 28 degree Celsius while the maximum temperature will be nearly 35 degrees.

In Jammu and Kashmir, the minimum temperature was 22 degree Celsius in Jammu while maximum will be around 34 degrees. The city is likely to witness partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers.

In Srinagar, the temperature will hover between 18 and 30 degree Celsius. The city is also expected to witness a partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers.

Leh, Ladakh will have a mainly clear sky becoming partly cloudy towards afternoon or evening. The temperature will hover between 13 and 29 degree Celsius.

In Gilgit, the minimum temperature will be 18 degree Celsius while the maximum will be around 34 degrees. It is expected to have partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers.

Muzzafarabad also may have partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers. The place will have a minimum temperature of 23 degree Celsius while maximum temperature will be around 35 degrees.



  • "New Edu policy to produce job creators, not seekers: Modi", headlines Hindustan Times. The paper added that the Prime Minister strongly backed the push in the newly unveiled policy for use of local language as the medium of instruction in schools.

  • The Times of India headlines Foreign Minister Jaishankar's statement that Beijing will test India and India must stand up to China.

  • In a related story, The Pioneer writes, "Amid parleys, PLA moves to Lipulekh". The paper adds that the strategy is seen as a bid by China to needle India.

  • The Financial Express reports that the Finance Minister has said that the MSME loan relief is set to widen and include units with turnover of up to Rs 250 crores and professionals like doctors, CAs, lawyers etc.

  • July GST inflow 14% short of last year's collection", reports The Tribune.

  • The Asian Age headline quotes Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot as saying, "If high command forgive rebels, will welcome them back".

  • "Hope, fingers crossed: Sharp dip in Delhi cases and spread of infection", says The Indian Express. The paper adds that if the current trend holds the active cases may fall below 1000 come September.

  • And finally, The Indian Express reveals that the "Cricket world's richest board hasn't paid its star players in 10 months". The BCCI's 27 elite contracted players are yet to receive payments due since October last year, adds the paper.


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