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Last Updated : Apr 10 2021 7:32PM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
West Bengal: Average voter turnout registered at 66.76 per cent till 3:30 PM            India and Netherlands announce launch of strategic partnership in water sector and setting up of fast track mechanism to facilitate bilateral trade            India's cumulative COVID-19 vaccination coverage nears 10 crore            Teeka Utsav to be organised from tomorrow across the country to control surging COVID-19 cases            Rajasthan govt imposes night curfew in 9 cities till April 30 to curb pace of COVID-19 infection           

Text Bulletins Details

Morning News

0830 HRS


  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi to inaugurate The India Toy Fair 2021 at 11 AM today.

  • Poll schedule for Assembly elections in West Bengal, Assam, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry announced.

  • Eight phase polling for West Bengal and three phase election for Assam.

  • Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry to go for single phase polling on 6th of April.

  • Bypolls for Kanyakumari Lok Sabha seat in Tamil Nadu and Malappuram in Kerala to be held on April 6.

  • Counting of votes to be taken up on May 2.

  • More than 1.37 crore healthcare and frontline workers  vaccinated against Covid 19 in the country.

  • Uttar Pradesh government to screen all those returning from Maharashtra and Kerala for Corona.

  • Government extends ban on commercial international flights till March 31st.

  • Mumbai court declares underworld gangster Iqbal Mirchi's family members fugitive economic offenders.

  • Saras Aajeevika Mela, bringing rural women Self Help Groups under one platform, opens at Noida Haat.


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. 

And now, the news in detail :


Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the India Toy Fair 2021 today through video conferencing. Toys play a significant part in the development of a child’s mind and also help improve psychomotor and cognitive skills in children. The Fair aims to provide an impetus to the underlying themes of Atmanirbhar Bharat and vocal for local campaigns, launched by the Government to promote indigenous industries. It also aims to leverage the potential of toys in making learning joyful across all ages in education.

In his Mann ki Baat programme in August last year, the Prime Minister had said that toys not only augment activity, but also give flight to aspirations. Noting the importance of toys in the holistic development of a child, the Prime Minister has earlier also emphasized boosting toy manufacturing in India.

"टॉय इंडस्ट्री बहुत व्यापक है। इसे आगे बढ़ाने के लिए देश को मिलकर मेहनत करनी होगी। मैं अपने स्टार्टअप मित्रों को, हमारे नए उद्यमियों से कहता हूं कि टीमअप फॉर टायज़, आइये मिलकर खिलौने बनाएं। अब सभी के लिए लोकल खिलौनों के लिए वोकल होने का समय है। आइए हम अपने युवाओं के लिए कुछ नए प्रकार के अच्छी क्वालिटी वाले खिलौने बनाते हैं। खिलौना वो हो जिसकी मौजूदगी में बचपन खेले भी खिलखिलाए भी। हम ऐसे खिलौने बनाएं जो पर्यावरण के भी अनुकूल हों।"

The Toy Fair is being organized in line with this vision of the Prime Minister. Through this platform, the government and the industry will come together to discuss how India can be made the next global hub for manufacturing and sourcing of toys by way of attracting investments in the sector and promoting exports. Our correspondent has filed this report:

"The four-day event aims to bring together all stakeholders including buyers, sellers, students, teachers and designers on a virtual platform to create sustainable linkages and encourage dialogue for the overall development of the industry. Over one thousand exhibitors from across 30 States and Union Territories will display their products in an e-commerce enabled virtual exhibition. It will showcase traditional Indian toys as well as modern toys including electronic toys, plush toys, puzzles and games. The fair will also host numerous webinars and panel discussions with eminent Indian and international speakers with proven capabilities in toy design and manufacturing. For children, it is an opportunity to participate in a plethora of activities, including craft demonstrations on traditional toy making and virtual visits to toy museums and factories. With Dipendra Kumar, Anupam Mishra, AIR News Delhi".

The wooden toys of Channapatnam are regaining the lost glory. The artisans who once gave up the skill of toy making have now been incentivised. With the strong push by the government the art of toy making is gaining popularity. The first ever 4 day toy fair beginning today is a push in the same direction. Nurture India, the company which is into making wooden toys and wooden home decor is one of the participant of the toy fair. Founded by Somya Suresh and Pratima Sinha in 2018, the company works across three different art forms from states like UP, Karnataka and Rajasthan. Talking to All India Radio News, the co-founder of Nurture India, Somya said, the Indian wooden toys are famous world over. She added the first ever toy fair is a win win situation for every one in the toy making industry.


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 tomorrow. It will be the 74th 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. AIR will broadcast the programme in regional languages immediately after the Hindi broadcast. The regional language versions will be repeated at eight in the evening.


Assembly elections in West Bengal, Assam, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry will be held between 27th March to 29th April. The counting of votes in all the four states and one Union Territory will take place on 2nd May. 

Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora announced the poll schedule in New Delhi yesterday evening. The assembly elections in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry will be held in a single phase on 6th April.

In West Bengal, polling will be held in eight phases on 27th March, 1st, 6th, 10th, 17th, 22nd, 26th and 29th April.

Assam will go to polls in three phases on 27th March and 1st and 6th April. 

The Election Commission also announced bypoll for Kanyakumari Lok Sabha constituency in Tamil Nadu and Malappuram Lok Sabha seat in Kerala which be held on 6th April.


In  Assam, various election related activities are gradually gaining momentum following the announcement of election dates. Polling will be held in  3 phases beginning from the 27th of March.  Following the announcement of election schedule, various district administrations started removing of banner hoardings that were displayed to highlight various welfare schemes. Chief Electoral Officer Nitin Khade will address a press conference at 4 pm today. The Home department transferred 18 senior police officers last night. More from our Correspondent:

"With the announcement of the election dates, political activities would get momentum in coming days. The ruling BJP and Asom Gana Parishad will continue their alliance and UPPL is to join them in the upcoming polls. The BJP already announced that the party will tie up with UPPL instead of the current ally Bodoland People's Front, BPF. Senior BPF leader Pramila Rani Brahma said that the party would fight the polls alone in the Bodoland Territorial Region while decision on alliance with other parties in the rest of the state is yet to be taken. The grand alliance of the Congress, AIUDF, Left parties and Anchalik Gana Marcha are also holding meetings on seat sharing. Congress leaders said that the talks are in positive direction. 2 newly formed regional parties Asom Jatiya Parishad and Raijor Dal would be contesting the polls together. Manas Pratim Sarma, AIR News, Guwahati".  


Over 1.37 core  COVID-19 vaccinations were done so far in the country.  Briefing media in New Delhi. Joint Secretary in Health Ministry Dr Mandeep Bhandari said, over 88 lakh 41  thousand Health Care Workers  and 49 lakh 15  thousand  Front Line Workers  have administered the vaccines till now. He said, Health Care Workers first dose coverage of more than 80 percent  done in seven  States and UTs and Front Line Workers first dose coverage of more than 60 percent  done in seven States and UTs.

Dr Bhandari said,  two lakh 84 thousand vaccine  were given yesterday. He informed that the orientation of administrators and Programme Managers of all States and UTs was conducted for Co-WIN 2.0. The  next phase of COVID-19 vaccination for people aged 60 years and above and those aged 45 years and above with comorbidities will start from Monday.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that India is committed to sharing resources, experiences, and knowledge for global good. Thanking Director General of World Health Organisation Dr. Tedros Ghebreyesus who thanked India and Mr Modi for supporting Vaccine Equity, Mr Modi said, we are all together in the fight against this pandemic.


Uttar Pradesh government has issued fresh guidelines for the people who are returning to the state from Kerala and Maharashtra. These guidelines have been issued in the wake of rising cases in both the states. Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has asked officials to remain over rising cases of COVID-19 in other states. The Chief Minister has stressed on the need for focused covid testing and has asked officials to make arrangements for the quarantine of  visitors coming from places where Corona cases are on the rise. Our Lucknow correspondent has filed this report:

"State government has issued guidelines for surveillance, Quarantine, testing and isolation of visitors from Kerala and Maharashtra. Guidelines issued by additional chief secretary health Amit Mohan Prasad says that every person coming from these state must be screened at airports. They should undergo rapid antigen test and if any symptoms are found then RT PCR test of the person will be conducted. If the report comes positive then he or she will have to remain in Home or facility isolation for 15 days. Even if the report comes negative Quarantine of 1 week is a must. Authorities have been asked to keep the list of passengers  who are coming by rail or by buses from these States so that they can be screened. Chief medical officers of the districts have been asked to make arrangements for the screening of such people.  SUSHIL CHANDRA TIWARI, AIR NEWS LUCKNOW".


Gujarat government has announced a new phase of vaccination drive against Covid 19 from the 1st of March. More from our Ahmedabad correspondent:

"Briefing the media persons the Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel has said that the people above the 60 years will be covered under the new phase of vaccination drive. He said that the people above the 45 years with serious illness including heart failure with hospitalization during the last one year will also be covered. According to sources, all eligible persons can register their names on Cowin2.0 portal in advance for vaccination at Government and private vaccination centers. In the first week of March, about 500 vaccination centers will be available. The number of centers will be increased gradually. Those who cannot register online can register on-site. Rs. 100 processing fee will be required to be paid for vaccination at private facility for which an online system will be introduced. There are no criteria of income limit for the vaccination of targeted groups. Yogesh Pandya, AIR News, Ahmedabad".


Director of All India Institute of Medical Sciences New Delhi Dr. Randeep Guleria has urged those above 60 years of age to register themselves on CoWIN app for vaccination against Corona.


Welcome back to the morning news,

President Ram Nath Kovind has greeted people on Guru Ravidas Jayanti. In his message, Mr Kovind said, Guru Ravidas was a great saint and a religious reformer, who devoted his life to serve humanity. The President said, through his teachings, he delivered the message of equality, justice, peace and harmony to  mankind. He said,  Guru Ravidas worked for promoting the principles of social harmony and brotherhood throughout his life. He called upon people to resolve to take inspiration from his teachings and strive for strengthening fraternity in the society for the benefit of  humanity. 

Home Minister Amit Shah said, Guru Ravidas by his works tied the whole society in the thread of unity and paved the way for the welfare of all classes. Mr Shah said, his message of giving priority to karma and inner purity will continue to inspire people.


Information & Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar has said that the new guidelines for social media intermediaries, OTT platforms and Digital Media will bring uniformity among all in the field of media. Speaking about the Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics code notified by the government, Mr. Javadekar said this will empower the users and will for the first time ensure grievance redressal mechanism for them. The Minister asserted that the new guidelines which have been welcomed by the world community is based on the principle of responsible freedom.


Aviation regulator, Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has extended the suspension of international commercial passenger flight services till March 31st. Scheduled international flight operations were suspended from March 23rd last year in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country. However, international scheduled flights may be allowed on select routes by the competent authority on a case-to-case basis. The restriction will not apply to cargo flights and flights specifically approved by DGCA. Amid the suspension, special international flights have been allowed under the Vande Bharat Mission since May last year and under bilateral "air bubble" arrangements with select countries since July.


A special court in Mumbai has declared underworld gangster Iqbal Mirchi’s family including his wife and two sons as fugitive economic offenders and ordered  confiscation of their properties. The order was passed by special court judge Abhijit Nandgaonkar yesterday while hearing an application filed by the Enforcement Directorate. While passing the order, the court reasoned that the properties were purchased in the name of Mirchi’s wife Hajra Memon and two sons Junaid and Asif from profits of Mirchi’s drug business and hence considered the proceeds from crime. As per this order various properties in India and abroad valued approximately  97 crore rupees would be confiscated. The ED had approached the court last December for trying cases against the accused under prevention of money  laundering act. All the accused were issued notice by the court to appear before it on February 16th but they failed to do so, following which the court passed the order.


India's economy grew 0.4 percent in October-December period of current fiscal. According to official data, the GDP, in third quarter of current fiscal is estimated at 36.22 lakh crore rupees showing a growth of 0.4 percent. GDP growth for third quarter of current fiscal shows that positive growth of economy is returning to pre-pandemic times.

GDP of the country witnessed growth after logging contraction in the last two quarters.

Government said, measures taken by it to contain spread of  Covid-19 have had an impact on the economic activities as well as on the data collection mechanisms.


Reserve Bank  of India (RBI) has extended the deadline to apply for an umbrella entity.Through this entity, the central bank wants to focus on retail payments system in the country, by over a month to March 31 in view of the pandemic. In August last year, RBI had released a framework for authorisation of an umbrella entity for retail payments in the country. That time it had invited applications from desirous entities by February 26, 2021. RBI informed in a release that requests have been received from various stakeholders including Indian Banks' Association for extending the deadline, keeping in view the COVID-19 related disruptions and inconveniences. It further informed that accordingly it has decided to extend the timeline for making the application up to March 31.


India has rejected the opinion of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention calling for immediate release of AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal case accused British national Christian Michel saying the conclusions drawn by the UN panel are based on limited information, biased allegations and an inaccurate understanding of its criminal justice system. Responding to queries over the report, MEA Spokesperson, Anurag Srivastava said that the Working Group is not a judicial body, and therefore, its opinions are not legally binding on the member states. He said, we have seen selective leaks of the opinion of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention concerning the case of Christian James Michel, even before its official release.


In Jammu and Kashmir, two terrorist associates linked with proscribed outfit LeT were arrested from Bandipora yesterday and some explosives seized from their possession. Police said acting on specific inputs, Bandipora police, in a joint operation along with army's 13 RR and CRPF's 45 Bn apprehended Ghulam Mohi-ud-din Khan, resident of Paribal, and Riyaz Ahmad Bhat, resident of Bonikhan Mohalla from Bonikhan Mohalla, in Hajin. Ammunition and explosives including two live grenades and eight live rounds of AK-47 have been recovered from their possession.


The Union Territory of Ladakh is gearing up for the ensuing tourism season. In view of the  danger of coronavirus infection, authorities are taking all precautions before opening up tourism, academic and economic activities. More from our Leh correspondent:

"As the ZojiLa route is opening in a couple of days, Ladakh is preparing for the season. The State task force meeting has announced new SOPs for the tourists to follow, to have a smooth vacation in moonland Ladakh. UT Tourism and Health Secretary, Commissioner Rigzin Samphel said,

On the other hand, the Leh district administration has decided to reopen the schools in a phased manner from the 1st of March. Schools for 10 to 12 classes are to reopen in the  first phase. After a series of meetings with the stake holders, the District Administration and Leh Hill Council have decided to shift from the online to offline - school based learning.  With Yangchan Dolma, Ramesh Chandra, AIR NEWS, LEH, LADAKH".


Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister Narendra Singh Tomar inaugurated Saras Aajeevika Mela 2021 at Noida Haat yesterday. Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Kailash Choudhary was also present on the occasion. Addressing the gathering, Mr Tomar said that the Ministry of Rural Development is working to include more women in Self Help Groups (SHGs). He said these SHGs played a vital role in increasing family income and improving quality of life. Speaking about Prime Minister's call for self-reliant India, the minister said Atmanirbharta can't be achieved only by Government's schemes and efforts. He urged the empowered SHGs to come forward and help other SHGs to become Atmanirbhar. The Saras Aajeevika Mela 2021 is being organized from 26th February to 14th March 2021 by the Ministry of Rural Development. More than 300 rural self-help groups and craftsman from 27 states are participating in the Mela. The Mela will remain open from 11 AM to 8 PM daily.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi today paid tributes to Sant Ravidas on his Jayanti. In a tweet, Mr Modi said, the messages given by Sant Ravidas on equality, goodwill and compassion centuries ago, will inspire the countrymen for ages.


In Kerala, amid the  Covid-19 pandemic the devotees will take part in the  Attukal pongala from their homes today. Pongala is the annual ritual of the Attukal Bhagavathy Temple  in Thiruvananthapuram and holds the Guiness world record  as the largest  gathering of women. Every year nearly 20  lakh devotees take part in the festival.


India Meteorological Department (IMD) has said that above normal temperatures are prevailing in parts of North-West and Eastern India. Additional Director General of IMD, Anand Sharma told the media that the states of Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and Western Madhya Pradesh are experiencing above normal temperatures.


Now, let us take a look at the weather for today. National Capital Delhi  had a minimum temperarture of 16 degrees. It  will have a maximum temperature of  33 degree Celsius.  There will be strong surface winds during day time. 

Mumbai will have mainly clear sky. The minimum temperature was 21 degrees Celsius while the maximum is expected to be around 35 degrees.

Chennai's temperature will vary between 22 and 34 degrees Celsius.

Kolkata will have fog in the morning and mainly clear sky later. The minimum temperature was 22 degrees Celsius while the maximum will be  around 34 degrees.

Srinagar may witness generally cloudy sky with moderate rain with maximum temperature of 12 degrees Celsius. The minimum temperatutre, however, was just five degrees.

Jammu is likely to have thunderstorm with rain. The minimum temperature was 14 degrees Celsius while the maximum will be nearly 26 degrees.

Leh is likely to have light snow with maximum temperature of around six degrees. The minimum temperature was minus four degrees Celsius. 

Gilgit will also have generally cloudy sky with light rain. The temperature will hover between six and 17 degrees Celsius.

Muzaffarabad will witness generally cloudy sky with moderate rain with temperature hovering between seven and 19 degrees Celsius.

Dehradun is likely to observe thunderstorm with hail. The upper level of temperature in the city will be around 30 degrees Celsius, while the lower level was 13 degrees. 



  • Election Commission announcing Assembly election dates for West Bengal, Assam, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry is the story that dominates headlines in most of the dailies this morning. "Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Assam vote March 27- April 29, results on May 2" leads the Times Of India.

  • "Indian Air Force (IAF) marks 2 years of Balakot operation with further enhancements" reports Hindustan Times. In a related story the paper writes "US welcomes Indo-Pak ceasefire along the LoC."

  • "Economy enters positive phase with 0.4 percent growth" notes the Statesman.

  • And finally, "Covid vaccine drive set to gather pace from Monday" reports the Business Line. The paper writes "The next phase of vaccination will see private sector playing a bigger role".



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