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Your Daily Wrap: RBI hikes repo rate by 50 bps, Congress holds protest over price rise; and more

From Congress holding nationwide protests against inflation, unemployment and rising prices to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi, here are the top stories of today.

(Clockwise) Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, wearing black clothes, marches towards Rashtrapati Bhawan as part of party’s nationwide protest, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Taiwanese President President Tsai Ing-wen, RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das, BSP leader Mayawati.

Delhi saw high drama today as Congress leaders defied prohibitory orders imposed by police and took out protests against inflation, unemployment and rising prices. Several Congress workers and leaders, including Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi and Sachin Pilot, were detained and taken to Kingsway Camp police station. Addressing a press conference in the morning, Rahul said, “India is witnessing the “death of democracy” and that those who are standing up against the “onset of dictatorship” are being viciously attacked, arrested and jailed. The BJP hit back, saying the Congress leader should stop blaming the Indian democracy for the party’s repeated defeat in polls under him. Watch how Congress’ protest against inflation unfolded across the country.

The Reserve Bank of India’s Monetary Policy Committee increased the repo rate by 50 basis points to 5.4 per cent with immediate effect. This is the third rate hike by the central bank in this financial year. Why has the RBI opted for a hike, and what impact will it have? Read here.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today met Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss a number of issues including GST dues for her state. Banerjee, who is on a four-day visit to Delhi to attend a Niti Aayog meeting, will also meet President Droupadi Murmu later in the day. A meeting with the Opposition leaders is also on the cards.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) today said it has frozen cryptocurrency exchange WazirX’s bank assets worth nearly 65 crore as a part of a money laundering probe. ED’s probe against the crypto exchange is linked to its ongoing investigation against a number of Chinese loan apps (mobile applications) working in India.  The action comes days after the ED served WazirX a notice under the FEMA Act.

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China has announced unspecified sanctions on US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for her visit earlier this week to Taiwan. A Chinese Foreign Ministry statement said that Pelosi had disregarded China’s concerns and resolute opposition to her visit to the self-ruled island, which Beijing claims. On Thursday, China launched military exercises near Taiwan. As the long-range, live-fire drills began, Taipei said it was “preparing for war without seeking war”. What is Taiwan’s strategy to fight back in case China attempts to occupy it by force? Read here.

On eighth day of Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, India’s top wrestlers produced dominating performances as four of them, including superstar Bajrang Punia, stormed into the finals.

Friday Reviews: This week we review Alia Bhatt-starrer Darlings, Pa.Ranjith’s Victim, Ron Howard’s Thirteen Lives, and Dulquer Salmaan-Mrunal Thakur starrer Sita Ramam. Watch them or skip them? Read our reviews to decide.

Political Pulse

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Congress Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge has claimed he was “insulted” as he was summoned by the Enforcement Directorate on Thursday during the working hours of Parliament. On Friday, House Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu said that MPs do not enjoy any immunity from arrest in criminal cases when the House is in session, and they cannot avoid summons issued by law enforcement agencies. He went on to cite Article 105 of the Constitution, entailing MPs certain privileges so they can perform their duties without any hindrances; and Section 135A of the Civil Procedure Code that, he said, incorporates the privileges. A look at what Article 105 and Section 135A say.

The ever-unpredictable Bahujan Samaj Party chief, Mayawati, has again gone her separate way from the rest of the non-BJP Opposition to back NDA candidate Jagdeep Dhankhar for vice-president. This comes days after the BSP said it would back the NDA’s Droupadi Murmu for president, instead of the Opposition’s joint candidate Yashwant Sinha. So why is Mayawati supporting Murmu and Dhankhar? Here are some reasons behind her decision.

Express Explained

In order to facilitate the achievement of more ambitious climate change targets and ensure a faster transition to a low-carbon economy, the government is seeking to strengthen a 20-year law, called the Energy Conservation Act of 2001, which has powered the first phase of India’s shift to a more energy-efficient future. The Bill to amend the Energy Conservation Act, 2001, seeks to make it compulsory for a select group of industrial, commercial and even residential consumers to use green energy. It also seeks to establish a domestic carbon market and facilitate trade in carbon credits. But what is a carbon market, and why does India want to create one? We explain.

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While several efforts have been directed toward safeguarding Ukraine’s art and artefacts during the Russian onslaught, its artists are also striving to depict the war and its impact through their works. An exhibition titled ‘The Captured House’, which opened at Espace Vanderborght in Brussels this week features works of contemporary Ukrainian artists made after the Russian invasion began on February 24. A look at some of the works from the exhibition, as well as some of the greatest war paintings of the 20th century.

 

First published on: 05-08-2022 at 09:17:11 pm
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