Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who often tweets in different languages, usually addressed to foreign heads of states, posted in Bangla late Wednesday, wishing people on the occasion of Durga Puja. Modi described Durga Puja as an auspicious festival that signifies the triumph of good over evil, and in a subsequent tweet wrote that he would wish “brothers and sisters” of West Bengal at midday on Thursday, when the Puja festivities start. While nothing was particularly wrong with the tweet, some on social media pointed out that construction of the sentences felt more like Hindi translated to Bangla. Celebration of Durga Puja is in news this year, given the pandemic situation, with the Calcutta High Court recently ruling that Puja pandals are no-go zones given the increase in Covid-19 cases. With the state headed for what will be a bitterly contested Assembly election next year, the ruling Trinamool Congress has bet big on “Bengali pride”, and Durag Puja is seen as vital to those optics.
There is a scramble to get police verification of all outsourced staff across Indian Railways, with a latest order stating that all personnel engaged by contractors, in whatever capacity, should be vetted by the police. Turns out that during the lockdown, several zones across India started reporting thefts, and in many cases the circumstances pointed towards alleged involvement of outsourced staff. In view of this, the Railway Protection Force, along with general managers of zonal railways, have decided that from now, no personnel would taken in without verification.
Afghan leader Ata Mohammad Noor met External Affairs minister S Jaishankar on Wednesday in New Delhi, as South Block is trying to reach out to all relevant players in Kabul. Before Noor, Marshal Abdul Rashid Dostum had visited in September and Abdullah Abdullah, chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation, visited earlier this month.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines