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Last Updated : Mar 5 2021 6:46AM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
UN General Assembly adopts India's resolution to declare 2023 as International Year of Millets            Prime Minister Narendra Modi says, India is honored to be at forefront of popularizing Millets            BJP CEC meets in New Delhi in wake of upcoming Assembly Elections            External Affairs Minister, Dr. S. Jaishanker visits Dhaka, says, Bangladesh is central to India's neighborhood first Policy            India commemorates Chabahar Day, External Affairs Minister says, Chabahar port facilitated delivery of humanitarian assistance during COVID-19 pandemic           

Text Bulletins Details

Midday News

1400 HRS


  • India says, engagement with multiple stakeholders important to spread right information and dispel rumors about COVID-19 vaccination programme.

  • Over 20 lakh 29 thousand people administered vaccines in the country.

  • Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu calls a meeting of all party leaders on Sunday, ahead of Budget session.

  • IMF revises growth projection for India to 11.5 per cent in 2021.

  • US asks its citizens to reconsider travelling to Pakistan and Bangladesh and not visit Afghanistan due to COVID-19, terrorism and conflicts.

  • And International Cricket Council announces Player of the Month awards to recognise best performances of both male and female cricketers.


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. 

Now, the news:

India has said, that engagement with multiple stakeholders is important to spread the right information and dispel rumors about the vaccination programme. Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr. Harshvardhan, While chairing the 148th session of WHO Executive Board yesterday, said that 2020 was the year of discovery for COVID-19 vaccines and this year's challenge before the world is to inoculate the people who most need it.

Dr. Harsh Vardhan said, it is encouraging that tremendous progress has been made despite all the problems in the world. He said, ever since the COVID-19 was declared a pandemic, a valiant fight was fought against the disease with collective efforts to suppress transmission, prevent illness and reduce deaths.

Appreciating the role of all the member States for acting with speed and scale during the rapidly evolving pandemic, Dr. Harshvardhan said, determination and hard work demonstrated by the countries have saved countless lives amid the ongoing crisis. He added that the biggest success of this pandemic has been the team work and health care organizations actually focused on delivering a meaningful goal across the world. Dr. Harshvardhan also paid respect to those brave men and women who sacrificed themselves in the pandemic and those who are continuing to fight relentlessly and selflessly against the Covid-19.

The Executive Board welcomed the Immunization Agenda 2030 and unanimously recognized the central role played by immunization programmes in safeguarding public health globally. Member States also called for early and equitable availability of COVID-19 vaccines through the COVAX facility.


A total of over 20 lakh 29 thousand people have been administered Covid-19 vaccines in the country so far. Meanwhile, the country's COVID-19 recovery rate reached 96.91 per cent with the total recovery of more than 13 thousand patients in the last 24 hours. The Ministry said that more than one crore three lakh 59 thousand patients have already recovered from this disease. Covid-19 active cases are on a continuosly declining trajectory in the country. Presently, the total number of active cases in the country is one lakh 76 thousand 498 which comprises only 1.65 per cent of the total positive cases.

The Health Ministry said, 137 deaths have been reported during the last 24 hour taking the toll to one lakh 53 thousand 724 across the country. The Indian Council of Medical Research said that various laboratories have conducted more than five lakh 50 thousand tests of corona virus samples during the last 24 hours and more than 19 crore 36 lakh tests have been done in the country so far.


The COVID vaccination is being held at a record 1,205 sites in Rajasthan today. Our Jaipur correspondent reports that the health department has set a target to vaccinate over one lakh 14 thousand health workers today. Here is a report:

"Health department is continuously increasing the session sites to complete the vaccination of 4.5 lakh registered health workers by January 31. 2 thousand 410 vaccination sessions have been organized so far in the state and 1 lakh 61 thousand 116 health workers have been vaccinated. Meanwhile, Just 125 new cases of COVID 19 were reported yesterday in the state. No new case was reported from 15 districts out of 33 districts.  While, less than 5 persons tested positive in 13 districts of the state. The number of active case has also been reduced to less than 3 thousand in the state.– Jitendra Dwivedi, AIR News, Jaipur"


In Bihar, 88 thousand, 207 people have been administered Covid -19 vaccine so far. No side effect has been reported from any part of the state. Health Minister Mangal Pandey said the state government has set the target to complete the first round of vaccination by February.

Meanwhile, two lakh 56 thousand 230 patients have recovered from the Covid-19 infection in the state so far. The number of active cases is continuously declining. Currently, two thousand 265 patients are receiving treatment in various hospitals.

The COVID-19 recovery rate has improved to 98.56 per cent in the State. Over two crore 56 thousand corona tests have been conducted in Bihar so far.


In Madhya Pradesh, more than two lakh 47 thousand patients recovered from covid infection so far. 515 patients recovered from the infection yesterday. More from our Bhopal correspondent:

"In MP, 228 new positive cases were reported yesterday. Covid positivity rate is consistently declining in the state and now stands at 1.1 percent. Eleven districts recorded no positive cases yesterday. With 2 patients succumbing to the infection, the death toll rose to 3 thousand 793. Meanwhile, Covid vaccination is being done smoothly in the state. More than 67 thousand 400 people were vaccinated so far. Pooja P. Vardhan ,AIR News Bhopal


Mizoram is witnessing a declining trend in the active cases of Covid-19. The total number of active cases has dropped to 47 as of today. Also, the recovery rate of Covid-19 has improved to 98.71 per cent.

According to the state medical bulletin, three new cases were recorded while two patients recovered in the past 24 hours.


In the United Kingdom, more than one lakh people have died of Covid-19 the first European nation to pass the landmark. The toll has risen by an average of over 1,000 per day for the past seven days. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he takes "full responsibility" for the government's actions, saying they truly did everything they could. He said he was deeply sorry for every life lost. A total of 100,162 deaths have been recorded in the UK, Mr Johnson told at the Downing Street news conference that it was hard to compute the sorrow contained in this grim statistic.

The UK is the fifth country to pass 100,000 deaths, coming after the US, Brazil, India and Mexico.


In view of the Budget Session of Parliament, Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu has called a meeting of leaders of all parties in the Upper House on 31st of this month. Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla is also expected to hold an all party meeting on 29th of this month. The meetings will be held to ensure smooth functioning of both the Houses of Parliament during the session. The Government has also convened an all party meeting on 30th of this month to seek support of political parties to ensure smooth conduct of business in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha.

The Budget Session will begin on 29th of this month with President Ram Nath Kovind's address to the Joint Sitting of both the Houses of Parliament.

The Union Budget will be presented on 1st of next month. In view of COVID-19 pandemic, the Rajya Sabha will function from 9 AM to 2 PM and Lok Sabha will function from 4 PM to 9 PM. The first part of the session will conclude on 15th February while the second part of the session will begin on 8th of March and will conclude on 8th April.


The Delhi Police has registered nearly two dozen cases of violation of lawful directions, rioting, damage to public property and assault on public servant with deadly weapons, following yesterday's violence during farmers' protest in the National Capital. The city police is keeping a close watch on the situation. During the farmers' tractor rally, the confrontation between the police and farmers continued throughout the day. Most of the incidents were reported from Mukarba Chowk, Ghazipur, ITO, Seemapuri, Nangloi T-Point, Tikri Border and the Red Fort. So far, 86 policemen have been reported injured and several public and private properties have been damaged in this act of vandalism by the rioting mob. Delhi Police said, a section of the crowd climbed atop the rampart of the Red Fort where they hoisted their organisation’s flag. With great efforts the Delhi Police managed to remove the crowd from the Rampart and the vicinity.

Delhi Police Commissioner S N Shrivastava has asked the agitating farmers not to indulge in violence. He appealed to them to maintain peace. He said, the time and the routes for the tractor rally were finalised after several rounds of meetings. The agitators defied the conditions and started their march before the scheduled time and they chose the path of violence. The Police displayed utmost restraint during the tractor rally.  In view of the situation, Delhi Police took necessary steps with restraint to maintain law and order. He said, this agitation has caused great damage to public property.


Delhi Metro has closed the entry gates of Lal Quila metro station. However, exit is permitted at this station. Entry gates of Jama Masjid metro station are also closed.  All other stations are open and there is normal services on all lines of Delhi Metro.


Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal has directed the all Deputy Commissioners, Police Commissioners as well as Superintendents of Police to remain on ‘high ’ so as to ensure the law and order situation in the State is not disturbed at any cost.Chairing a high level meeting, the Chief Minister directed the officers concerned to remain extremely vigilant considering incidents in the National Capital Delhi. During the meeting, Chief Secretary Vijai Vardhan, Additional Chief Secretary of Home Department Rajeev Arora, Director General of Police Manoj Yadava and other senior officers were present.


Terming as unacceptable the violence perpetrated by certain elements during yesterday's Tractor Rally in the national capital, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has urged all genuine farmers to immediately vacate Delhi and return to the borders, where they had been protesting peacefully for the past two months.

Mr Singh also ordered a high in Punjab amid tension and violence in Delhi. He has directed Director General of Police Dinkar Gupta to ensure that law and order in the state is not disturbed at any cost.


Government has said that more than 84 lakh paddy farmers have been benefited from current Kharif Marketing Season Procurement Operations with Minimum Support Price, MSP value of over one lakh ten thousand crore rupees. Agriculture Ministry said, the government continues to procure Kharif crops at its Minimum Support Price from farmers as per its existing schemes. Around 587 lakh tonnes of paddy have been procured from various states This is an increase of 20.28 per cent against the last year corresponding purchase of 488 lakh tonnes. 

The Government through its nodal agencies has also procured over three lakh tonnes of Moong, Urad, Groundnut Pods and Soyabean benefitting around one lakh 62 thousand farmers.


Welcome to the midday news:-

Four Army jawans were injured in an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) blast that was planted near a school in Shamsipora area of South Kashmir’s Kulgam district.

A senior police official told AIR News that four personnel of Army’s Road Opening Party (ROP) of 24 RR were injured in the blast. All the injured have been shifted t Army’s 92 Base Hospital in Srinagar. The official said that the school building was also damaged in the blast. The area has been sealed off and a massive manhunt has been launched.

Army’s PRO in Srinagar said in a statement that it was a grenade attack that was lobbed on the ROP. He said that after first aid treatment, the soldiers have been shifted to the hospital for further treatment.


Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath will transfer over 2 thousand 400 crore rupees today as second and third installments of PM Aawas Yojana - Urban, to over 3.42 lakh beneficiaries of the state. The Chief Minister will connect live from Gorakhpur to the beneficiaries from all over the state. He will interact with five beneficiaries in five districts of the state.

Our Gorakhpur correspondent reports that the Chief Minister will also visit the Chauri Chaura martyrium to oversee the preparations for the centenary celebration of the historical event that took place in 1922. State is gearing up for a grand celebration on the completion of 100 years of Chauri Chaura incident. The state-wide celebration will begin from 4th of next month and will go on for a year.

The logo of the Chauri Chaura Centenary Celebration was jointly  inaugurated by Governor Anandiben Patel and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in Lucknow last week.


Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palanisamy today inaugurated Jayalalithaa Memorial in Chennai. The grand memorial is built on a nine acre land situated on the shores of the Marina Beach. The phoenix shaped memorial has a statue of Jayalalithaa and MGR with an artificial waterfall. The building was completed in a record period of 30 months. Scores of AIADMK workers from all districts thronged the city to witness the event. Incidentally, V.K. Sasikala, the confidante of the late Chief Minister Jayalalithaa was released from Bengaluru's Parappana Agraharam Prison today. She was shifted to Victoria Hospital on 21st January and had tested positive. As per protocol, she will be discharged on 10th day if she is asymptomatic and free of oxygen support for at least 3 days.


Haryana Police today registered  a case under various sections of IPC against around  2200 demonstrators for indulging in violence during farmer's protest near village Softa in Palwal district on National Highway 19.

The police spokesman said that the demonstrators tried to break the barricades on the National Highway during farmers protest and  indulged in violence. The police has intiated action against them after registering a case against them.


In West Bengal, the Out Patient Department of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, AIIMS at Kalyani in Nadia district has become functional from today. It started with 8 departments and is scheduled to be fully operational by the end of this year. More from our Kolkata Correspondent.

"For setting up a 960 bedded unit of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in Kalyani, the centre has given approval in the year 2015 under Pradhan Mantri Swastha Suraksha Yojna. Initially a fund of twelve hundred crore rupees released for that purpose. The hospital built on a land of a little over 179 acres at Kalyani Basantapur in Nadia district of the state, started the OPD services on a small scale from today, with 8 departments. The Executive Director of the Institute Dr. Ramji Singh said that presently, 150 to 200 patients can be accommodated in the OPD.

Patients can register their names for OPD and consultation from 8 to 11am in the morning. With Surajit Biswas from Kalyani, this is Madhuparna Dhar Chowdhuri, Air News Kolkata."


In West Bengal, two day special session of the legislative assembly began today. After obituary references to the departed dignitaries like former President Pranab Mukherjee, the house was adjourned for the day. A resolution against the three farm laws of the centre is supposed to be presented in the house tomorrow. Ruling  Trinamool Congress has issued whip for all its MLAs to be present in the house.

Meanwhile, chaotic scenes were witnessed in front of the VIP gate of the Assembly house as a section of female members of the agitating para-teachers forum 'Sikshak Oikya Mancha' tried to cross the iron gates. The protestors were demanding to meet the Chief Minister to implement equal work, equal pay and pension facility as well.


In Assam, the ruling BJP has flagged off mobile vans to seek public views for preparing party manifesto ahead of the upcoming assembly polls. Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal flagged off the vans in the presence of state party President Ranjit Kumar Dass, NEDA Convenor, Himanta Biswa Sarma and Guwahati MP, Queen Oja. Party sources said that 50 vans would travel to the  126 assembly constituencies across the state seeking public opinions. Addressing the gathering, the Chief Minister told the party workers to create awareness on the good work being done by the State government. Mr. Sonowal said that due to strong will of the government, rhino poaching has been stopped at the Kaziranga national park.


In the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the election for the offices of chairpersons of district development councils (DDCs) is likely to take place next month. AIR Jammu Correspondent reports that proposal for the reservation of offices of DDC chairpersons is expected to be finalized in the first week of February. The State Election Commission (SEC) is expected to come up with the final proposal in the first week of February after considering objections, if any, to draft reservation of offices of chairpersons of DDCs and the elections would be held within 20 days after the SEC comes up with the final order on the reservations.

The State Election Commission has unveiled a draft proposal for reservation of offices of chairpersons of DDCs. According to the proposal, posts of DDC chairpersons of Ganderbal, Shopian, Ramban and Kishtwar districts have been reserved for women, while Poonch seat has been kept exclusively for women from Schedule Tribe (ST) Category. Similarly, offices of chairpersons of Anantnag and Rajouri district have been reserved for STs while the seats of Jammu and Udhmapur district have been reserved for Schedule Caste (SCs).


Ministry of Finance has released an amount of over 12,351 crore rupees to 18 states for providing grants to the Rural Local Bodies. This  is the 2nd instalment of basic grants released in the financial year 2020-21. The grant has been released to 18 states who have provided the Utilisation Certificate for the first instalment and on the recommendation of the Panchayati Raj Ministry.

The grants to RLBs are released as per the recommendations of the 15th Finance Commission to create community assets and improve financial viability of the RLBs.  The grants are provided to all the three tiers of Panchayati Raj -  Village, Block and District to enable pooling of resources across villages and blocks. 

The 15th Finance Commission has recommended two types of grants to the RLBs - basic and tied grants. Basic grants can be used by the local bodies for location specific felt needs except for salary or other establishment expenditure. The tied grants are to be used for the basic services of sanitation and maintenance of Open Defecation Free status and supply of drinking water, rain water harvesting and water recycling.


News Just in:-

Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs  has approved Minimum Support Price (MSP) of copra at 10,335 rupees per quintal which is an increase of 375 rupees over 2020 rates. Briefing media in Delhi, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said this will benefit millions of farmers engaged in copra farming and impact the farmers of 12 coastal states.

Mr. Javadekar said this is one of the many decisions taken by the Centre to benefit farmers. He said it has been seen that when the government increases rate, the market also pays more.


International Monetary Fund, IMF projected an 11.5 per cent growth rate for India in 2021. It makes India the only major economy of the world to register double-digit growth this year amidst the coronavirus pandemic. With the latest projections, India regains the tag of the fastest developing economies of the world.

Revising its figures, the IMF said that in 2020, the Indian economy is estimated to have contracted by eight per cent. In its latest World Economic Outlook Update, China is next with 8.1 per cent growth in 2021 followed by Spain (5.9 per cent) and France (5.5 per cent).

India's economy, the IMF said, is projected to grow by 6.8 per cent in 2022 and that of China by 5.6 per cent.

Early this month, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva had said that India actually has taken very decisive action, very decisive steps to deal with the pandemic and to deal with its economic consequences.

Talking to AIR News Economist Naveen Gupta said that figures show strong fundamentals of Indian economy


Updating its travel advisory for three South Asian countries, the US has urged its citizens to reconsider their travel to Pakistan and Bangladesh and not to visit Afghanistan.

The state department issued separate travel advisories for three countries yesterday to reconsider travel to Pakistan due to COVID-19, terrorism and sectarian violence, it said. It also asked its citizens not to travel to Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces due to terrorism and kidnapping.

Urging its citizens to reconsider travel to Bangladesh due to COVID-19, the state department asked them to "exercise increased caution" in the country due to crime, terrorism and kidnapping.

In another advisory, the state department asked Americans not to travel to Afghanistan due to COVID-19, crime, terrorism, civil unrest, kidnapping and armed conflict.


In Dubai, the International Cricket Council, ICC today announced the introduction of the ICC Player of the Month awards. The award will recognise and celebrate the best performances of both male and female cricketers across all forms of international cricket throughout the year.

In a statement, the ICC said, an independent ICC Voting Academy comprising former players, broadcasters, and journalists from around the world, will team up with fans to vote for the ICC Men’s Player of the Month and ICC Women’s Player of the Month.

From performances by youngsters such as Mohammed Siraj, Washington Sundar, T. Natarajan, Rishabh Pant and Rahmanullah Gurbaz of Afghanistan to established players such as Ravichandran Ashwin, Joe Root of England, Steve Smith of Australia, Marizanne Kapp and Nadine de Klerk of South Africa and Nida Dar of Pakistan, there will be no shortage of candidates for the month of January.


The GDP growth rate in Bangladesh fell to 0.5 percent in the calendar year 2020 as compared to 8.4 percent in the year 2019 due to the impact of Covid 19 pandemic. According to the report ‘World Economic Situation and prospects 2021’ released by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, the fall in GDP growth rate was cushioned to some extent by a recovery in trade and remittance in the second half of the year.


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

In the National capital Delhi there is a forecast of haze. Minimum temperature was five degree Celsius and maximum will be around 21 degrees. 

Mumbai will have mainly clear sky. Minimum temperature was 24 degree Celsius and maximum will be around 29 degrees.

Chennai will have fog in the morning and partly cloudy sky later. Minimum temperature was 20 degrees Celsius and maximum will be around 31 degrees.

Kolkata wiil have fog in the morning and partly cloudy sky later. Minimum temperature was 15 degree Celsius and maximum will be around 23 degrees.

Srinagar will have partly cloudy sky later. Minimum temperature was minus two degree celsius and maximum will be around 6 degrees.

In Jammu, minimum temperature was 6 degree Celsius while maximum will be around 19 degrees with mainly clear sky.

Leh will have clear sky. Minimum temperature was minus 15 degree Celsius while the maximum will be around zero point six degree.

Gilgit will have fog in the morning and partly cloudy sky later. Minimum temperature was minus six degree celsius and the maximum will be around 12 degrees.

Muzaffarabad will have mainly clear sky becoming partly cloudy towards evening or night. Minimum temperature was three degree Celsius and maximum will be around 18 degrees.

Dehradun will have moderate fog. Minimum temperature was eight degree Celsius and maximum will be around 22 degrees.

Chandigarh will have mainly clear sky. Minimum temperature was five degree Celsius and the maximum will be 19 degrees.

In Hyderabad, Minimum temperature was 18 degree Celsius while maximum will be around 32 degrees. It is likely to have partly cloudy sky.

Ahmedabad will have clear sky. Minimum temperature was 12 degrees Celsius while maximum will be around 25 degrees.

In Patna, sky will have shallow fog. Minimum temperature was 10 degree celsius while the maximum will be around 18 degrees.

And, in Guwahati minimum temperature was 13 degree Celsius while maximum will be around 26 degrees.



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