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Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Daily briefing: Museum’s name changed, Agra officials hunt for Shivaji links; Rajnath Singh to make statement on China in Rajya Sabha today

From Samajwadi Party MP Jaya Bachchan's views on the Maharashtra government's efforts to contain the pandemic to the apprehension of Gujarat fishermen by Pakistan, read the top stories from print edition today.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: September 17, 2020 8:32:56 am
top news briefing today, top news today, india top news today, express investigation, fincen files, what are fincen files, rajya sabha chaos, farm bills, gauri lankesh, anurag kashyap sexual harassment caseSeptember 21, 2020: A look at the top news today.

Good morning Readers,

We are covering the Centre’s probe into the activities of a Chinese firm, the latest developments along the border and the similarities in the FIRs in the Delhi riots case.

The Big Story

An expert committee has been set up by the Government to study the revelations made by The Indian Express that a Chinese firm with links to Beijing is monitoring over 10,000 Indian individuals and entities.  External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said the matter was also taken up with the Chinese Ambassador.

Meanwhile, the Chinese firm behind the operation, Zhenhua Data,  said it was privately owned, its partners did not have any background in the Chinese military or the Chinese government, and its operation was “not illegal or unreasonable”. However,  Facebook has banned Shenzhen Zhenhua Data Technology from its platform for violating its policies.

From The Front Page

A top security officer has told The Indian Express that no terrority has been lost to China in the Depsang Plains this year as Indian troops have not had access to the 972 sq km portion between the Line of Patrolling and LAC in the last 15 years. 

Five FIRs filed in separate cases against five youths in connection with Northeast Delhi riots have been flagged by the Delhi home department for its identical content. Besides the names of the constables and the youths, and the place and time of arrest, all the FIRs state that the five were carrying loaded “desi kattas” (locally made pistol) “in the right pocket” of their trousers.

The Andhra Pradesh Government said it would challenge the high court’s “unprecedented” gag order against reporting an FIR filed by the Andhra Pradesh Anti-Corruption Bureau against a former legal officer and others over land purchase in Amaravati.

Must Read

Reserve Bank of India Governor Shaktikanta Das has virtually ruled out any relaxation in the loan restructuring scheme to tackle the Covid-related stress, saying the scheme had been structured to prevent the piling up of bad loans as had happened some years ago.

Besides debates over Covid and China, rivalry between political parties in the states played out in the chamber of Lok Sabha on Wednesday. While Bengal BJP MPs argued that the state was turning out to be “like old Kashmir”, those from Bengaluru raked up the gold scam to take potshots at the Kerala government. 

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has already decided to rename the upcoming ‘Mughal Museum’ to ‘Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Museum’. However, authorities are trying hard to find a link between Shivaji and Agra — a problem that may further delay the project next to the Taj Mahal.

Will Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal resign on the issue of three farm bills, or not, is a matter of intense political debate in Punjab with Shiromani Akali Dal vertically split on the issue. 

“She has already conveyed to party many times that she was ready to resign on the issue,” says Sikander Singh Maluka, a former Punjab minister considered close to the Badals.

ICYMI

  • Tata Projects Limited won the bid to construct the new Parliament building — a part of the Central Vista redevelopment project.
  • A special court hearing the 1992 Babri Masjid demolition case on Friday fixed September 30 for pronouncement of judgment, and directed all the accused to remain present in court on that day.
  • Pakistan has apprehended 48 fishermen, along with their eight fishing trawlers, while they were fishing near the notional international maritime boundary line.
  • A Bengaluru court has rejected the bail plea of Arun Manoraj, nephew and personal assistant of former Bengaluru mayor, for his role in the August 11 violence in the city
  • The government has again tasked an expert committee to conduct a study on “the origin and evolution of Indian culture dating back to around 12,000 years ago”.

And finally

They faced the threat of mutilation for wearing nail polish or lipstick. They were publicly flogged for violating the dress code. Today, the three women in the Afghan government’s 21-member team that is holding peace talks with an all-male Taliban delegation in Qatar’s Doha says: “We are here to tell the Taliban that it has to face, respect and accept the new Afghanistan.”

Delhi Confidential: In a strong rebuttal to Maharashtra BJP MP Vinay Sahasrabuddhe’s claims that the state government had “failed” to deal with the Covid situation, Samajwadi Party MP Jaya Bachchan said that her family had contracted the virus and that they had been taken care of.

🎧 In today’s podcast, we discuss the government’s decision to ban the export of onions and whether it benefits anyone.

Until tomorrow,

Leela Prasad and Liu Chuen Chen

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