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Last Updated : Oct 31 2020 6:23AM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
PM Modi inaugurates Sardar Patel Zoological Park & Arogya Van in Gujarat; Lays foundation stone for various projects at Kevadia            Covid-19 recovery rate improves to 91.15 pct            Bihar: Campaigning intensifies for Second Phase of Assembly Elections; Polling for 94 seats on Nov 3            Eid Milad-un-Nabi being celebrated with religious fervour across the country            IPL Cricket: Kings Eleven Punjab take on Rajasthan Royals in Abu Dhabi           

Text Bulletins Details


Midday News

1400 HRS
18.10.2020

THE HEADLINEs:-

  • Country's COVID-19 recovery rate crosses 88 per cent.

  • Rescue and relief operations in full swing in the rain ravaged parts of Telangana, Karnataka and Maharashtra.

  • BRAHMOS, the supersonic cruise missile successfully test fired today from Indian Navy’s indigenously-built stealth destroyer INS Chennai in Arabian Sea.

  • BJP leader and Union Home Minister Amit Shah says Nitish Kumar will  be the next Chief Minister of Bihar even if BJP gets more seats.

  • National capital Delhi's air quality continues to be poor as stubble burning in neighbouring states causes concern.

  • In IPL cricket today, Sunrisers Hyderabad will take on Kolkata Knight Riders in Abu Dhabi, while Mumbai Indians face Kings XI Punjab in Dubai.

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As the nation fights the COVID-19 pandemic, we begin with a message of precaution to stay safe and  protected by following these three simple steps --

·  Wear a face mask.

·  Maintain Do Gaz Ki Doori for social distancing.

·  Focus on hand and face hygiene. 

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In a remarkable development,the country's COVID-19 recovery rate has crossed 88 per cent, the Health Ministry said today. The Government said, the total number of recoveries has reached over 65 lakh 97 thousand. Presently, the total number of active cases in the country is seven lakh 83 thousand and the Case Fatality Rate is at 1.52 per cent, which is one of the lowest, globally.

The constantly increasing recoveries ensured that the actual caseload of the country is considerably reduced and currently comprises only 10.45 per cent of the total positive cases.

In the last 24 hours, more than 72 thousand COVID patients have recovered and 61 thousand 871 new cases have been reported. The total number of positive cases now in the country is over 74 lakhs.

The Ministry said, effective implementation of Centre's strategic and graded T3 strategy, Test-Track and Treat approach has led to higher recoveries and lower fatality. In the last 24 hours, one thousand 33 deaths were reported taking the toll to one lakh 14 thousand 31.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research, more than nine lakh 70 thousand tests were conducted during the last 24 hours. The total number of samples tested so far has reached nine crore 42 lakh.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi has reviewed the situation of Covid-19 pandemic and the preparedness of vaccine delivery, distribution, and administration in the country. The Prime Minister noted the steady decline in the daily Covid cases. Three vaccines are in advanced stages of development in India, out of which 2 are in Phase II and one is in Phase-III.  Indian Scientists and Research Teams are collaborating and strengthening research capacities in neighbouring countries namely Afghanistan, Bhutan, Bangladesh, the Maldives, Mauritius, Nepal and Sri Lanka. There are further requests from Bangladesh, Myanmar, Qatar and Bhutan for clinical trials in their countries.

In an effort to help the global community, the Prime Minister further directed that the country should not limit its efforts only towards the immediate neighbourhood but should also reach out to the entire world in providing vaccines, medicines and IT platforms for vaccine delivery system.

The National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19 in consultation with State Governments and all relevant stakeholders presented a detailed blueprint of vaccine storage, distribution, and administration. The Expert Group in consultation with the States is working actively on vaccine prioritization and distribution of vaccine. 

The Prime Minister directed that the access to the vaccine should be ensured speedily keeping in view the geographical span and diversity of the country.

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The Prime Minister's Office in a statement said, two Pan India studies on the Genome of SARSCoV-2 (Covid-19 virus) in India conducted by Indian Council of Medical Research and Department of Bio-Technology suggest that the virus is genetically stable and there is no major mutation in the virus. The PMO said, Coronavirus vaccine will not be affected as no major mutation was in the virus.

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Ministry of Health has said that India has exponentially scaled up its testing capacity from one in January to more than 9.32 crore at present. In a tweet this morning, the Ministry said, the very high testing has resulted in the continuous falling positivity rate and it has now fallen below 8 per cent. It said, very comprehensive testing has thus worked as a highly effective tool to curb the spread of COVID19 infection. The Health Ministry said, it also leads to early identification, prompt isolation and effective treatment of COVID-19 cases, and eventual low Fatality Rate.

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In Tripura, 134 fresh cases of Cocid were registered while 187 patients were discharged in the past 24 hours. Also, with the death of three patients yesterday the death toll has risen to 326.

The state Covid19 bulletin reported that the total number of infected people rose to 29,327 out of the total 4,28,978 samples tested so far. Officials said that so far 26,199 patients have recovered from coronavirus infections while 2,776 patients are presently undergoing treatment.

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In Kerala, as  Covid cases are on a continuous rise, a high-level central team is presently visiting various regions of the State, taking stock of the situation. More from our correspondent:-


"Today the central team is visiting Ernakulam district, which is recording very  high no of Covid cases in recent days. Yesterday the team had a high level meeting with  officials in State capital Thiruvananthapuram.They will  visit Thrissur district tomorrow. The Central team deputed by  Ministry of Health and Family Welfare is taking stock of the present Covid preventive measures and treatments facilities in the State and  will also support States' efforts to strengthen containment, surveillance, testing, infection prevention and control measures, and efficient clinical management of covid  positive cases. Meanwhile  the present major concern of Kerala is the  test positivity rate continuing to remain  high of over 14 per cent.Presently there are 96,004 active covid cases in Kerala. Mayusha for AIR News from Thiruvananthapuram"

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Telangana state reported 1436 new COVID-19 cases during the past 24 hours. With this, the total COVID cases in the state gone up to 2 lakh 22 thousand 111. The state conducted over 41 thousand tests yesterday. The recovery rate has also marginally improved to 89.5 per cent with 2154 more people recovering yesterday. This took the number of recovered people so far in the state to 1 lakh 98 thousand 790.

Meanwhile, the daily bulletin issued by the state Medical and Health department this morning, stated that total deaths rose to 1271 following 6 more people succumbing during the past 24 hours. Currently the state has little over 22 thousand active cases out of which 18 thousand 379 are in home isolation. 

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Film Producer Boney Kapoor says, Corona pandemic is a challange but by just following the precautions we can defeat the virus unitedly.

Talking to AIR News, Mr.Kapoor said, in view of the upcoming festival season, we must remain more and vigilant to not let the guard off.

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The BJP today slammed congress leader Shashi Tharoor for defaming India and lauding Pakistan's Covid fight. Briefing reporters in New Delhi, Party spokesperson, Sambit Patra alleged that Shashi Tharoor mocked India's Covid fight. He said, Mr Tharoor is saying that the Government of India is failing in the management of Covid. Mr Patra said, the whole world is watching that how Narendra Modi protected the people during the pandemic and served food to 80 crore people.

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Very heavy rains have caused fresh spells of flooding in several parts of Hyderabad. More colonies are facing floods following a breach in a  major lake at Balanagar near Hyderabad. Heavy rains in Hyderabad and other parts of Telangana cause death of 50 people and huge damage just a couple of days ago. A five-year old died when a old wall collapsed at Mangalhat in the city.

Meanwhile, MeT officials issued an Orange warning asking people to be prepared for any eventuality. They warned of intense spells of rainfall along with thunderstorm at many places in Hyderabad and neighbouring areas for next 3 days due to formation of another low pressure. More details from our Hyderabad Correspondent:


"Rain water that flooded Some residential colonies in Hyderabad during last week is yet to recede and the fresh spells of last evening’s  heavy downpour added difficulties for residents at many places in the Twine cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad. Balapur lake near Hyderabad breached last evening. Two teams of National Disaster Response Force and 19 teams of Disaster Response Force of  GHMC are carrying out relief works. About 170 monsoon emergency teams are clearing water across the city. Over 300 motor pumps have been deployed for pumping out flood water and removing piled-up sludge from the residential complexes. Intense spraying of antilarval and bleaching activities are underway to contain spread of Corona virus. Besides, mobile health camps have been sent to the rain affected areas in Hyderabad limits. Lakshmi, airnews, Hyderabad."

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In, North Karnataka, heavy rainfall since last few days has thrown life out of gear and caused extensive damage to property. According to the data released by the Karnataka state Disaster Monitoring Centre, 22,752 people in Kalburgi, Vijayapura, Raichur and Yadgir are displaced and sheltered in 151 relief camps. Out of 245 villages along the riverbanks, 83 villages were found vulnerable to flooding and 20,269 villagers living there were evacuated to safety.

The NDRF, Fire and Emergency agencies evacuated 448 persons stranded on river banks. According to the preliminary estimate the rain has damaged 379 houses partially and four houses completely in the past 24 hours. In the data released on October 15, the rains have damaged 2712 houses partially and 318 houses completely. More from our correspondent:


"Bhima river is at spate due to excess water released from Maharashtra dams. In Kalburgi district Bhima and Kagina rivers are at spate. The 225 villagers stranded in Udachana village in Afzalpur taluk were rescued. Around 500 houses in the village have submerged due to the flooding. A temple near Bhima river built over a height of 300 feet near Gangapur sangam has submerged. 98 army men are working in three teams to rescue stranded villagers in Afzalpur, Jewargi and Shahbad taluks. Three NDRF teams along with Police, fire and SDRF members are carrying out rescue measures here. In Yadgir district 42 villages are affected due to overflowing Bhima river. It is estimated that the river water has inundated crops over 6000 hectares. SUDHINDRA AIR NEWS BENGALURU "

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In Maharashtra, widespread damage has been caused to the standing crops due to incessant rainfall in Sangli, Satara and Kolhapur districts. In Sangli alone crops spread across ten thousand hectares  have been damaged. Whereas, in Kolhapur more than 24 thousand 950 farmers have been affected due to the rainfall that lashed parts of western Maharashtra for four consecutive days last week. Our Mumbai correspondent has more details.


"The crops of grapes, jowar, sugarcane, banana, maize and soybeen have been severely hit due to the incessant rains that wreaked havoc in parts of Sangli, Satara and Kolhapur. The state's agriculture and revenue departments will undertake the panchnama to assess the damage. In Sangli district, 123 villages have been affected due to the rainfall. Guardian Minister of Sangli, Jayant Patil said that those farmers who have insured their crops should inform about the damage they have suffered to the concerned insurance companies. He has also directed the officials to submit the proposal after the assessment of panchnamas. The heavy downpour has also taken a toll on livestocks. In Kolhapur, crops spread across 337 hectares of land have been damaged. As many as 24 thousand 950 farmers have suffered losses with the standing crops getting washed away. Meanwhile, chief minister Uddhav Thackeray will visit Solapur district tomorrow to take stock of the situation. KUNAL SHINDE, AIR NEWS, MUMBAI"

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BRAHMOS, the supersonic cruise missile was successfully test fired today from Indian Navy’s indigenously-built stealth destroyer INS Chennai, hitting a target in the Arabian Sea. The missile hit the target successfully with pin-point accuracy after performing high-level and extremely complex manoeuvres.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh congratulated DRDO, and Indian Navy for the successful launch. Secretary, Department of Defence Research and Development and DRDO Chairman Dr G Satheesh Reddy, congratulated the scientists and all personnel of DRDO, BrahMos, Indian Navy and industry for the successful feat.

DRDO Chairman Dr Reddy said, BRAHMOS missiles will add to the capabilities of Indian Armed Forces in many ways.

BRAHMOS as prime strike weapon will ensure the warship’s invincibility by engaging naval surface targets at long ranges, thus making the destroyer another lethal platform of Indian Navy. The highly versatile BRAHMOS has been jointly designed, developed and produced by India and Russia.

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In Bihar, campaigning is in full swing in poll bound constituencies of First and Second phase of assembly elections. The first phase of polling will be held in 71 assembly constituencies on 28th October while in the second phase 94 assembly segments will go to polls on 3rd November. 

Leaders of NDA and Grand alliance are holding several public meetings in different assembly segments. Star campaigners and union ministers are leading the BJP campaign. Besides former Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis Union ministers Ravi Shankar Prasad, RK Singh, Nityanand Rai and Ashwini Kumar Choubey are addressing rallies in support of NDA candidates.

Ravi Shankar Prasad will address rallies in Kaimur and Chenari. Senior BJP leader and Deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi addressing a rally in Chausa appealed people to vote for NDA for a developed Bihar, rising above caste and religion lines. JD(U) President and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar is stressing on development works of his government in his election rallies. He addressed a rally in Buxar. Mr Kumar will hold public meetings Nava Nagar (नावानगर), Tarari and Jagdishpur also later in the day.

The Chief Ministerial candidate of Grand Alliance and RJD leader Tejaswi Prasad Yadav said in a public meeting at Chanan ( चानन) that providing employment and development works is his prime agenda. He will hold six public meetings today in Gaya, Patna, Nawada, Sheikhpura and Jamui districts. More from our correspondent:


"Leaders of other alliances like Grand United Secular Front and Progressive Democratic Alliance (PDA) are also addressing the public meetings in support of their candidates. Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Rashtriya Lok Samta Party (RLSP) are leading the Grand United Secular Front. The front has also partners like Asaduddin Owaisi led AIMIM, Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party  and Samajwadi Janta Dal. BSP Chief Mayawati and RLSP president Upendra Kushwaha will launch a joint poll campaign. Pappu Yadav led Jan Adhikar Party and his Progressive Democratic Alliance has also fielded several candidates for all the three phases. Mr Yadav is addressing several rallies. Lok Janshakti Party president Chirag Paswan is yet to launch his poll campaign. Dharmendra Kumar Rai, AIR News Patna.


Meanwhile, Union Home Minister Amit Shah has said that Nitish Kumar will be the next Chief Minister of Bihar even if the BJP gets more seats in the assembly elections. Talking to a TV channel, Mr Shah claimed  that the NDA will get a two-third majority in the polls. He said that the BJP has made a public announcement about Nitish Kumar as Bihar CM face. There is no if or but. Nitish Kumar will be the next chief minister of Bihar, he said.

Talking about the Lok Janshakti Party breaking away from the ruling alliance in Bihar, Mr Shah said the party was offered adequate seats but still walked away from the alliance. Mr Shah also made it clear that any possibility of LJP's return to NDA can be looked into only after Bihar election.

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Paddy procurement for the current Kharif Marketing Season is in full swing. Over 76 lakh tonnes of paddy has been procured from Six lakh 69 thousand farmers. The Agriculture Ministry said, the government continues to procure Kharif crops at its Minimum Support Price from farmers as per its existing MSP Scheme. The total MSP value till date has been to the tune of over 14 thousand 495 crore rupees.

The Ministry said, the approval was accorded for procurement of over 41 lakh tonnes of Pulse and Oilseeds for the States of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Telangana, Gujarat, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha, Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh under Price Support Scheme. The Government through its Nodal Agencies has procured over 723 tonnes of Moong and Urad having MSP value of five crore 21 lakh rupees benefitting 681 farmers in Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Haryana. 

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Delhi’s air quality continued to be in the ‘poor’ category this morning. According to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research, SAFAR, the overall air quality index of the national capital was recorded at 303. It said, an increase in stubble burning observed yesterday around Punjab, Haryana and neighboring border region. SAFAR said, an increase in stubble contribution in PM 2.5 is estimated at around 19 per cent for today.

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The Pondicherry University celebrated its 36 th foundation day yesterday. Dr. Ramanan Ramanathan, Director, Atal Innovation Mission and  Additional secretary, NITI Aayog participated and delivered distinguished lecture on the topic “Innovation: The Driver for Transforming Higher Educational Institutions”. Here is a report from our correspondent:


"Dr Ramanan pointed out that Innovation has a key role in empowering India’s demographic dividend to pursue entrepreneurship, and nation building. He said that India is improving its position in the global innovation ranking and elaborated the impact of the activities that, Atal Innovation Mission has launched. Besides, he spoke on the 5 pillars of Atma Nirbhar Bharat and how higher educational institutions can promote innovation culture to become self- reliant and sustainable in the light of National Educational Policy 2020. ProfessorGurmeet Singh, Vice Chancellor of Pondicherry University highlighted the need for introducing innovative and multidisciplinary programmes and enhancing digital infrastructure to embrace NEP 2020. The event was conducted online by Google Meet. It was  attended by a large audience. Chandra Mohan, AIR NEWS, Puducherry"

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi today congratulated Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern on her resounding victory. In a tweet, Mr Modi said, he is looking forward to working together for taking India - New Zealand relationship to a higher level.

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The News Services Division of All India Radio in its bilingual live  phone-in programme today  will bring you a Special  discussion Programme on Covid-19.  Dr. Aparna Agarwal, Professor of Medicine, Lady Hardinge Medical College will participate in the discussion.

Listeners can ask questions to the experts on Toll Free Telephone No:  1800-115767. You can also ask questions on telephone number: 011: 2331-4444  and post  queries on our Twitter handle @airnews s by #tag Askair.

This can be heard tonight on FM Gold Channel and additional frequencies  from 9.30 PM onwards. 

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed grief on the demise of Dr Joseph Mar Thoma, the spiritual head of the Marthoma Christian community who passed away today. In a tweet, Mr Modi said,  Dr. Joseph Mar Thoma Metropolitan was a remarkable personality who served humanity and worked hard to improve the lives the poor and downtrodden.

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In IPL Cricket, Sunrisers Hyderabad will take on Kolkata Knight Riders in Abu Dhabi, while Mumbai Indians will face Kings XI Punjab in Dubai today.

Meanwhile, Delhi Capitals defeat Chennai Super Kings (CSK) by five wickets in Sharjah last night. Shikhar Dhawan smashed his maiden IPL century and Axar Patel whacked three sixes in the final over to help Delhi team.

Dhawan smashed 101 runs off 58 balls and recorded his first-ever century in the IPL to guide Delhi Capitals to the top spot.

Earlier, after opting to bat first, Ambati Rayudu and Ravindra Jadeja's knocks powered Chennai Super Kings to 179 for 4 in their 20 overs. For Delhi Capitals, Nortje claimed two wickets while Rabada and Deshpande bagged one wicket each.

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In Jammu and Kashmir, an Assistant Sub Inspector (ASI) of Central Reserve Police Force was injured in a grenade attack by terrorists in South Kashmir's Pulwama district today.

CRPF sources said that terrorists lobbed a grenade towards CRPF party in main Town of Tral area in which one ASI of CRPF received splinter injuries. He was immediately rushed to nearby hospital for further treatment and his condition is stable.

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Weather Forecast:-

The temperature in the National Capital Delhi will hover between 17 and 35 degree Celsius. It will have Mainly Clear sky.

In Mumbai, there will be Partly cloudy sky. The minimum temperature was 27 degree Celsius and the maximum will be around 33 degrees.

Chennai will witness cloudy sky with Light Rain or Drizzle. The temperature will hover between 25 and 32 degree Celsius.

Kolkata will witness partly cloudy sky. The minimum and the maximum temperature in the metropolis will be 28 degrees and 35 degree Celsius.

On to the North, in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the minimum temperature was 16 degree Celsius in Jammu while the maximum will be around 35 degrees. The city will have mainly clear sky.

The temperature in Srinagar will hover between five and 26 degree Celsius. Leh in Ladakh, recorded minimum temperature of minus five degree Celsius and the maximum will be around 20 degrees.

Gilgit will experience mainly clear sky becoming partly cloudy towards afternoon or evening. The temperature will hover between five and 29 degree Celsius.

In Muzafarrabad, there will be mainly clear sky. The minimum temperature was 11 and the maximum 32 degree Celsius. 

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The cyclonic circulation over westcentral Bay of Bengal off south Andhra Pradesh coast persists and now extends upto 1.5 kms above mean sea level. Under the influence, light to moderate rains with thunderstorms are likely to occur at many places of North coastal Andhra Pradesh and at few places over Rayalaseema with isolated heavy rains at one or two places today.

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