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Daily Briefing: Congress, Akalis slam NIA summons, accuse Centre of supressing opposition

To spur growth & jobs, booster for construction and low-cost housing in Budget 2021; Vaccines off to smooth start, cross 2-lakh mark, take a look at the top headlines for today.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: January 18, 2021 12:16:50 pm
Top news today, today's top news, daily briefing, Top news this morning, Tarun Gogoi, coron avirus vaccine, PM Modi, RBI< Jaummu and kashmir, Love jihad, Indian expressFebruary 8, 2021: A look at the top news today.

The Big Story 

Both the Congress and NDA’s erstwhile ally, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), condemned the summons and notices issued by “an agency which probes terrorists” to farm leaders, journalists and an NGO protesting against the three farm laws. They accused the Centre of using the agency to intimidate those opposed to it.

Only in the Express

The government is likely to relax foreign direct investment (FDI) regulations for the construction development sector and increase its outlay towards a credit-linked subsidy scheme for affordable housing in the upcoming budget. Revival of the construction development sector is also seen as crucial for employment creation.

There is still “no response” and “clarity” on how and when internal elections to Congress posts, including that of the party president, would be held, said senior party leader Kapil Sibal in an interview to The Indian Express.  

Former J&K Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, who was our guest at the Idea Exchange, says DDC results expose the Centre’s lies over support for its Aug 5, 2019, changes, believes Assembly polls won’t be held anytime soon, and regrets that the Opposition, particularly Congress, did not stand up for J&K.

From the Front Page

In the first two days of the nationwide vaccination programme against Covid-19, over 2 lakh beneficiaries from the priority group received their doses, and only 447 reported adverse events following immunisation, the Union Health Ministry said. 

After cancelling his India visit in view of the pandemic, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson invited his Indian counterpart, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, to the UK for the G7 summit in June this year. He also reiterated his plan to visit India ahead of the G7 summit.

Must Read

With the Rajasthan government allowing schools, colleges and coaching centres to resume classes from today, Kota’s Rs 3,000-crore coaching industry is preparing to welcome students with plush studio apartments, a new 31-bed hospital with an ambulance on call and an Aarogya Setu-like app to monitor positive cases.

For dating apps in India, almost all growth in 2020 came outside the Tier-I market in small towns and cities. App companies say it could be down to the “reverse migration” during the Covid pandemic. However, the downside is the growing gender imbalance. Out of the 31 million Indian dating app users in 2020, 67 per cent were men.

Amid a political row in Andhra Pradesh over a series of incidents of vandalism of temples, with the ruling party and the Opposition pointing fingers at each other, The Indian Express has found that police investigations into these incidents show that the motive behind most of them was largely apolitical. 

ICYMI

The WhatsApp conversations between Republic TV editor Arnab Goswami and former CEO of BARC, Partho Dasgupta, which are part of the supplementary chargesheet in the TRP scam case, reveals how people occupying high posts are involved in financial frauds and also raises serious questions regarding national security, the Congress said.

Uttar Pradesh Police have obtained a production warrant for stand-up comedian Munawar Faruqui in connection with a case lodged against him at Prayagraj in April last year.

Two editors of a Manipuri news portal were arrested on sedition and terror-related charges under the IPC and Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act over the publication of an article criticising the state’s militancy movement.

After halting the vaccine drive due to widespread complaints about the technical glitches in Co-WIN app, the Maharashtra government is set to restart the drive in the state from Tuesday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi  flagged off eight trains from various parts of the country connecting to Kevadiya in Gujarat, where the Statue of Unity is located, in a bid to increase tourism in the belt.

 And Finally…

A three-member team of mountaineers led by Arjun Vajpayee, the youngest Indian to climb Mount Everest at the age of 16 years in 2010, got permission for a winter climbing expedition to Mount Trishul, a 7,120-metre peak in western Kumaon of Uttarakhand. This is the first time a winter expedition is being allowed to Mount Trishul. 

Delhi confidential: Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa, whose style of functioning, including the latest cabinet reshuffle, has come under criticism from BJP MLAs and leaders, seems to have received a morale boost from none other than Home Minister Amit Shah. 

In this podcast episode, we talk about how comedian Munawar Faruqui and 5 others have been arrested and denied bail without any concrete evidence and the concerns it raises about free speech and the case proceedings.

 

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