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Centre appeals to Farmers to suspend protests and Join Talks; 4th Round of talks on Thursday            J&K: Phase-2 of District Development Council elections conducted peacefully ; 48.62% voter turnout recorded            FPI inflows in October and November witness a significant resurgence            India reports new daily COVID-19 cases below 50 thousand mark for 24 consecutive days            India to take on Australia in third and final ODI at Canberra: Live Commentary on All India Radio           

Text Bulletins Details


Evening News

2030 HRS
23.10.2020

2030 HRS.


23rd October, 2020



THE HEADLINES:-

  • Finance Ministry releases six thousand crore rupees to states to addresss shortfall in GST revenue.

  • Electioneering in full swing in Bihar; Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi address election rallies.

  • Government imposes stock limit to check rise in onion prices.

  • Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan says next three months will be decisive to contain COVID-19  in the country.

  • COVID recovery rate improves to 89.53 per cent.

  • In IPL Cricket, Match between Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians is underway at Sharjah.

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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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The Central Government today borrowed and transferred six thousand crore rupees as first tranche to 16 States and two Union Territories. They are Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Meghalaya, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Delhi and Jammu and Kashmir. The Ministry of Finance in a statement said that the borrowing is at an interest rate of 5.19 percent. It is intended to make weekly releases of  six thousand crore rupees to the States. It said, tenor of borrowing is expected to be broadly in the range of 3 to 5 years. The Government has evolved a special borrowing window to address the shortfall in the GST collection during the year 2020 - 2021. Twenty one States and two Union Territories opted for this special window involving back-to-back borrowing coordinated by the Ministry of Finance.

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In Bihar, campaigning for the first phase of elections has reached its peak. Star campaigners and stalwarts of different political parties are addressing multiple rallies in a single day. The campaigning will end on Monday for this phase. Polling will be held on 28th October in 71 Assembly segments spread over 16 districts. Senior BJP leader and Prime Minister Narendra Modi today alleged that the parties who are standing against the NDA are opposed to the growth of the country. Addressing an election meeting at Bhagalpur the Prime Minister criticized the previous regime in Bihar, which he said supported the Maoists and wants to make the state sick and helpless, while the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) wants to work to help people.


"राष्ट्रहित में कोई भी, कुछ भी फैसला ले, ये लोग विरोध में हैं। हमेशा विरोध में रहने वाले ये लोग बिहार को विकास नहीं बर्बादी के पुराने रास्ते पर ही ले जायेंगे। ये सिर्फ सत्ता सुख के हैं, आपकी जनता की सेवा से, आपकी जरूरतों से इन लोगों का काई सरोकार नहीं है।"


The Prime Minister invoked the reign of “crime and ‘loot” during the 15-year rule of the RJD, as he sought people’s vote for the NDA to ensure the state’s continuous journey towards development. He accused the opposition parties of betraying the people of Bihar and their pride. PM sought votes for another term of the NDA government under Nitish Kumar. He said the people of Bihar know that it is important to make Nitish Kumar the Chief Minister again for faster development of the state. Appealing to the people of the state. Prime Minister Modi said each and every citizen of Bihar must cast their vote in the upcoming Assembly elections, following all COVID-19 guidelines and social distancing norms.


"आपको मतदान केन्द्र पर वोट डालने के लिये जरूर पहुंचना है। हमें कोरोना संक्रमण से बचाव के लिये जो भी जरूरी कायदे हैं उनका हमें पूरा पालन भी करना है। एक और आग्रह मैं आपसे करूंगा, त्योहारों का सीज़न है, इसलिये जो भी खरीदारी आप करेंगे, अधिक से अधिक लोकल खरीदेंगे।"


Earlier in the day Prime Minister addressed rallies at Dehri-on-Sone  in Sasaram and Gaya in the state. Senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi today started his poll campaign with election rallies from Hisua and Kahalgaon. He alleged that NDA government both at the Centre and in the state has failed to fulfill promises. He said in Kahalgaon, the BJP is promising 19 lakh jobs at the time of elections but they must give account of their performance in the last seven years. The Congress leader alleged that Narendra Modi led government at the Centre has ruined the economy. He added, demonetization and GST have badly affected small merchants. BSP chief Mayawati and RLSP president Upendra Kushwaha led Grand Democratic Secular Front today launched the poll campaign jointly from Kargahar in Rohtas district.


Addressing a rally in Bhabhua the BSP Chief said that the lockdown was a nightmare for migrant workers of Bihar. She criticized the Nitish Kumar government for its failure to provide employment to migrants in their own state. Our correspondent reports that star campaigners of several political parties are hopping from one constituency to another to woo the voters.


"Senior RJD leader Tejaswi Prasad addressed multiple rallies in Nawada, Nalanda and Gaya. Mr Yadav said in Tekari that corruption is rampant in government departments and people at grass root level are suffering from this. LJP Chief Chirag Paswan claimed in Govindpur in Nawada that in this election the mood of the public is clearly against the Nitish Kumar led government. Jan Adhikar Party Chief Pappu Yadav said if voted to power his government will provide 40 lakh jobs in next five years. Leaders of the left parties also addressed several public meetings. Dharmendra Kumar Rai, AIR News Patna."

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Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan today reviewed COVID-19 preparedness and measures for ensuring COVID Appropriate Behaviour with the Health and Medical Education Ministers and other senior officials of Uttar Pradesh held a meeting through video conference. He stated that the next three months are going to be decisive in determining the situation of COVID in the country. Dr Vardhan also informed that in the last three months, the country has seen a significant improvement in all the COVID parameters. He said,  from recording over 95 thousand cases in a day, the Covid cases have substantially reduced to less than 55 thousand  cases in a day. The Health Minister said,  the Recovery Rate of India is nearing 90 per cent and the Case Fatality Rate is also declining. He said, CFR stands at 1.51 per cent  and is moving towards the target of below one per cent. He further added, that the number of active cases are less than 7 lakh and the doubling rate has increased to 97.2 days, as of now. Dr. Vardhan also informed that Uttar Pradesh has fatality rate of 1.46 which is less than the National Average. The Recovery Rate of the State is 92.2 per cent and the positivity rate is 3.44 per cent.

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India has leaped across a significant milestone in its fight against COVID-19. The active caseload of the country has fallen below seven lakh for the first time after nearly two months. The total positive cases in the country today are six lakh 95 thousand 509 which comprise merely 8.96 per cent of the total reported cases.


The total recovered cases are nearly 70 lakh and the difference between active cases and recovered cases is also consistently widening. The recovered cases are nearly 10 times more than the active cases. Nearly 74 thousand patients have recovered and were discharged in the last 24 hours whereas the new confirmed cases reported in the same time span stood at nearly 54 thousand. The national recovery rate has further progressed to 89.53 per cent. The Health Ministry informed that 690 case fatalities were reported in the last 24 hours. The country also crossed a new peak of conducting more than ten crore COVID tests till date. During the last 24 hours, more than 14 lakh 42 thousand tests were conducted.

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Kerala continues to report a surge in Covid cases as 8,511 new cases were confirmed today. 6118 people recovered from the infection today. 26 more deaths were confirmed due to Covid, taking the death toll in the State to 1,281. Over 64, 000 samples were tested across the State in last 24 hours. The total active Covid cases in Kerala rose to 95, 657. State Health Minister K.K.Shailaja has urged people to strictly follow covid guidelines and avoid crowding during navaratri festival.

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Former captain of the Indian Hockey team Zafar Iqbal has urged people to continue to wear mask, wash hands and maintain social distancing during the festive season. Talking to AIR News, Mr Iqbal said, to stay safe people should follow COVID protocols .

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Professor of Ophthalmology at AIIMS, New Delhi, Dr. Radhika Tandon says, people should not become complacent towards COVID-19. Talking to AIR News, she said, the only way to avoid infection is to follow precautions. 

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The Government today rejected a notice circulating on social media which claims that CTET-2020 examination has been postponed to 5th November 2020. The Press Information Bureau termed the notice as fake. The CBSE has  said the exam date will be announced on the CTET website.

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The Government today said it has taken steps to moderate prices and availability of onion in the country. Briefing media in New Delhi, Consumer Affairs Secretary Leela Nandan said, a stock limit has been imposed on the onions with effect from today which is 25 Metric Tonnes for Whole Sellers and 2 Metric Tonnes for Retailers for a period up to 31st December 2020. 


She added, in order to moderate the price rise, the government took a pre-emptive step by announcing a ban on onion export on 14th of last month so as to ensure availability to domestic consumers at reasonable rates, before the expected arrival of Kharif onion. The Secretary said, the retail price rise has moderated to some extent, but recent reports of heavy rainfall in the onion growing districts of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh have created concerns about damage to Kharif crop. She said, the developments on the weather front have contributed to the sharp increase in onion prices. Ms Nandan said, to tide over the present situation, the government has stepped up disposal of onions through the built up buffer stock of one Lakh Metric Tonne from the Rabi onion-2020. The release of onion from the buffer stock is being carried out swiftly but in a calibrated manner from the second half of September to major Mandis as well as to retail suppliers in major cities and also through State Governments.

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The Telangana  Government has decided to purchase maize at a support price of 1850 rupees per quintal through Markfed. The procurement will be done from the purchasing centre set up at all villages for paddy procurement. Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao announced this after a high-level review meeting held in Hyderabad today. He asked maize farmers to avail this facility. He said the government has come forward to purchase maize so that farmers do not suffer losses as there is no demand for maize across the country. The Chief Minister recalled that the government had discouraged farmers not to cultivate Maize during the Kharif season as there is no scope of MSP for the crop. He said some farmers cultivated maize despite Government's advice. During the last Rabi season, Markfed purchased 9 lakh tonnes of maize at 1668 crore rupees. However, it incurred losses to the tune of 845 crore rupees as there was no demand for maize.

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Maharashtra Government has announced a ten thousand crore rupees relief package for the districts affected by excessive retreating rains that hit the state earlier this month. Addressing a press conference in Mumbai this afternoon, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said the government will try to ensure that the compensation reaches the affected families before Diwali. Lakhs of hectares of standing crops like sugarcane, soyabean, rice, lentils, pomegranate and cotton were destroyed in the torrential rains that hugely affected Solapur, Sangli, Kolhapur, Satara, Osmanabad, Latur, Beed and Aurangabad districts.


"Mr. Uddhav Thackeray said the money would be used not only to compensate farmers whose crops have been destroyed but also to rebuild houses, restore power, repair bridges and roads. Mr. Thackeray announced that farmers will receive ten thousand rupees per hectare for damages incurred for rain-fed crops, while twenty five thousand rupees per hectare will be paid for loss of horticulture crops. The compensation will be limited for losses incurred only upto two hectares of land per farmer. Already running short on resources, Mr. Thackeray said his government will not shy away from taking loans if required. Welcoming the decision, NCP Chief Sharad Pawar said today’s announcement proves that the Maha Vikas Aghadi government stands firmly with the farmers in their hour of need. NISHA RANEY, AIR NEWS, MUMBAI."

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The 5-member inter-ministerial Central Team led by Joint Secretary Praveen Vasishta today visited several flood affected areas in Hyderabad and other districts of Telangana. It assessed the extent of damage caused by floods. The Central team met officials and people of flood affected areas to get first hand information.


"The two days field visit of the central team concluded today. The central team has visited the state soon after the calamity struck the state.  The team has met several sources to come to an assessment on the extent of damages incurred in different sectors due to heavy rains and following floods. The members of the team collected information from state senior officials, experts and people who lost every thing in the highest rains in the past 100 years in Hyderabad. They visited the breached tanks and observed restoration works. They interacted with Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi and Secunderabad MP and Minister of state for Home G Kishan Reddy on the occasion. They also visited agriculture fields and witnessed the damage occurred to standing crops. The team will be submitting its report over the damages occurred to Telangana state due to the recent heavy rains. Lakshmi, AIR News, Hyderabad."

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In its continuous endeavor to cover more workers under the Employees' State Insurance, ESI Scheme, the Centre has extended the Employees' State Insurance, ESI Scheme to Arunachal Pradesh from 1st of next month. A notification to this effect has been issued by the Central Government for notifying the district of Papum Pare, under the ESI Scheme. The Ministry of Labour and Employment said all factories located in the district of Papum Pare employing 10 or more people will become eligible for coverage under ESI Act 1948. The Ministry said, the covered employees and their dependents will become eligible for a host of benefits including Cashless Medical Care Services, Sickness Benefit, and Maternity Benefit. The Ministry also said that arrangements for medical care are being made through a newly opened Dispensary Cum Branch Office at Itanagar.

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In Tripura, the state government has doled out one lakh rupees each to 136 returnee militants and their families as  financial assistance to improve their living. Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb handed over the money to the surrendered militants at a function held in Agartala yesterday. Chief Minister said  his government has handed over the monetary assistance as promised earlier adhering to the pact signed with the banned organization following their surrender. He appealed to all to take advantage of the state and central schemes to establish themselves and their families and move forward in life. The beneficiaries, who are undergoing Government sponsored skill training programme, have expressed satisfaction as the relief came during the festive season. Officials said that out of all the recipients, 88 people were directly involved in militancy and the others were their family members. These militants rejoined the mainstream on 13th August last year after they laid down arms.

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A major explosion in a fire cracker unit in Tamil Nadu killed five women workers this afternoon. The incident occurred at T.Kalluppatti village in Madurai district. About fifty workers were involved in manufacturing the fancy variety of fire crackers when the explosion occurred, killing  five on the spot. Three others are admitted to a hospital at Madurai with grievous injuries. Fire and Rescue personnel from Madurai and Virudhunagar rushed to the spot and doused the fire. It is said the manufacturing unit did not have the permission to manufacture the fancy type of crackers. A case has been filed against the owner of the unit.

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Lieutenant General Nanda Kishore Sahoo today took charge as Director General, Dental Services and Colonel Commandant of Army Dental Corps. During his distinguished military career of 37 years, he has held multiple appointments including Command of a unit in Kashmir Valley, Command Advisor of Western, Central and Southern Commands. On taking over, Lt Gen NK Sahoo exhorted all ranks to continue working with utmost zeal and enthusiasm. He urged them to continue on the path to strive for excellence and to keep Nation First in all their endeavours.

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Director at Society for Policy Studies and noted Defence Analyst Commodore C Uday Bhaskar has said that the 22 Ministerial Dialogue between Indian Defence and Foreign Minister and their US counterparts scheduled to be held on October 27th holds high significance after the recent QUAD meet in Tokyo, Japan. He said, the meeting is likely to witness signing of few very important defence agreement between the two countries.

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Defence Minister Rajnath Singh will be on a two day visit to Darjeeling and Sikkim from tomorrow. Duirng the visit, the Defence Minister will visit forward areas and interact with troops. He will perform Shastra Puja on Dussehra and inaugurate an infrastructure project built by Border Roads Organisation, BRO.

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Pakistan will remain in the grey list of global anti-terror financing watchdog, Financial Action Task Force, FATF as it has not been able to fulfil six out of the 27 mandates to check terror funding. The decision was announced by the President of FATF Marcus Pleyer. The FATF strongly urged Pakistan to swiftly complete its full action plan by February 2021. It said, Pakistan needs to do more to check terror funding, adding that the 6 items which Pakistan is yet to address are serious deficiencies.


The implementation plan to curb money laundering and terror financing was supposed to be put in place by the end of 2019. However, the dead line was extended in the wake of COVID pandemic. The FATF is an inter-governmental body set up in 1989 to combat money laundering, terror financing and other related threats to the international financial system. It currently has 39 members. These include two regional organizations- the European Commission and Gulf Cooperation Council.

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After 35 years, India has assumed the Chairmanship of the Governing Body of International Labour Organization, ILO. It marks a new chapter in the 100 years of productive relationship between India and ILO. Labour and Employment Secretary, Apurva Chandra, has been elected as the Chairperson of the Governing Body for the period October 2020 to June 2021. The Governing Body is the apex executive body of the ILO which decides policies, programmes, agenda, budget and elects the Director-General. At present the ILO has 187 members. Mr Chandra will preside over the upcoming meeting of the Governing Body to be held next month. At Geneva, he would have the opportunity to interact with the senior officials and social partners of the member states. It will also provide a platform to appraise participants of the transformational initiatives taken by India in removing the rigidities of labour market besides making its intention clear about universalization of social security to all workers. Mr Chandra belongs to the 1988 batch of the Indian Administrative Service, Maharashtra Cadre.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi will virtually inaugurate three key projects in Gujarat tomorrow. He will also launch the Kisan Suryodaya Yojana for the farmers of Gujarat. He will inaugurate the Paediatric Heart Hospital attached to the UN Mehta Institute of Cardiology and Research Centre and a Mobile Application for tele-cardiology at the Ahmedabad Civil Hospital. The Prime Minister will also inaugurate the Ropeway at Girnar.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi will share his thoughts with the people in the country and abroad in the 'Mann Ki Baat' programme on All India Radio at 11 AM on Sunday. It will be the 70th episode of the monthly radio programme. It will be broadcast on the entire network of AIR and Doordarshan and also on AIR News website www.newsonair.com and newsonair Mobile App. It will also be streamed live on the YouTube channels of AIR, DD News, PMO and Information and Broadcasting Ministry.

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In Himachal Pradesh, the international Snow Leopard Day was celebrated today by the state Forest Department Wildlife Wing in association with United Nations Development Programme at Killar  of Pangi in Chamba district. Snow leopard is the state animal of Himachal Pradesh. The state government is working for their conservation of snow leopards in collaboration with non-governmental organistaions in tribal district of Lahaul-Spiti.


"On this occasion nukkad natak,folk dance and other activities  were  organized to  spread awareness about the conservation of Snow Leopard. During the event, local heroes including the front line staff of the wildlife department were honored for the commendable work done by them in the field of wildlife conservation. Snow leopard is found in tribal district Lahaul Spiti and Pangi and Bharmour in Chamba district. With aim to increase the number of snow leopard, the state government has set up the Himalayan Snow Leopard Research Center in collaboration with the Nature Conservation Foundation at Kibber in Lahaul-Spiti. In Himachal Pradesh, their number is close to one hundred. Sanjeev Sundriyal, AIR News, Shimla."

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Now, let us take a look at the weather forecast for tomorrow.


The National Capital Delhi will have a misty sky, with the temperature hovering between 14 and 34 degree Celsius. Mumbai will see a partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers. The lower level of temperature in the metropolis will be 24 and the upper level will be 28. Chennai is likely to see a  generally cloudy sky with Light rain. The temperature will oscillate between 26 and 34 .Kolkata is expected to have a generally cloudy sky with Heavy rain. The minimum temperature in the metropolitan will be 25 degree Celsius and and the maximum 29. Jammu and Srinagar cities will see mainly clear sky. In Jammu, the minimum temperature will be 16 degree Celsius while maximum nearly 32. In Srinagar, temperature will vary between three to 24 degree Celsius. Leh will see a mainly clear sky but minimum temperature will be minus five degree Celsius while the maximum will be nearly 20 degrees. Gilgit will see a mainly clear sky becoming partly cloudy towards afternoon or evening with temperature hovering between four to 28 degrees Celsius. In Muzafarrabad, lower limit of temperature will be 10 degree Celsius while upper limit 30 degrees. The sky will be mainly clear.

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In IPL Cricket, Chennai Super Kings were 73 runs for 8 wicket in 16 overs at Sharjah, a short while ago. Earlier Mumbai Indians won the toss and elected to bowl. Tomorrow, there will be two matches. First match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Delhi Capitals will begin at 3.30 pm. In the second match, Kings XI Punjab will clash with Sunrisers Hyderabad starting at 7:30 pm. 

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