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Wednesday, December 02, 2020

Daily briefing: GST collections up again, now at 8-month high; Sisters thrash Congress’s Jalaun district chief over ‘sexual harassment’

We are covering the surge in gun purchases ahead of the US president election, an upcoming book that predicts India might see multiple Covid peaks, and the 100th anniversary of an Irish mutiny in Jalandhar and Solan.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | November 2, 2020 8:41:13 am
top news briefing today, top news today, india news briefing today, india latest news, indian express scholarship scam, bihar elections, us elections, faridabad woman murderNovember 2, 2020: A look at the top news today.


Express Investigation

“Charity from Saudia Arabia”: Middle men, bank staff, school authorities and others in Jharkhand employed multiple methods to scam minority students eligible for a centrally-sponsored pre-matric scholarship, but the Saudi claim was a recurring theme. Middle collected Aadhaar and bank account details from poor parents and deposited a fraction of what they were due.

Express impact: Chief Minister Hemant Soren ordered a probe into the “big scam”. And the state Chief Secretary said the verification process for the scholarship “has been stopped” till the probe is completed.

From The Front Page

An uptick in economic activity with the easing of Covid restrictions and other key factors saw gross Goods and Services Tax (GST) collections rising 10.2 per cent to an eight-month high of Rs 1.05 lakh crore in October, for sales in September. In the period last year, GST revenues had contracted by 5.29 per cent to Rs 95,380 crore.

In the midst of widespread protests, a polarised country and a pandemic, all of which have added to the tension leading up to the November 3 presidential election, a rising number of Americans are buying guns for the first time. A “reluctant gun owner” says many of his acquaintances fear the results would lead to a “civil war”. 

Most of the famers The Indian Express spoke to in poll-bound Bihar are convinced the state needs APMC mandis “like those in Punjab and Haryana”. They say that taking their produce to distant markets in the hope it would fetch a better price is beyond them. “We want both APMC and MSP-based procurement here,” they say.

The Blue Moon was visible in Mumbai on Saturday at 8.19 pm. [Pradip Das]

Decision 2020

In an interview with The Indian Express BJP national president J P Nadda talks about the crowds at Tejashwi Yadav’s rallies, his opinion of the leader of opposition, and why LJP’s Chirag Paswan is still part of the NDA. 

Despite attempts by the Nitish Kumar-led NDA alliance to rake up poor law and order during the 15-year regime of Lalu Prasad, the RJD-led Mahagathbandhan has so managed to keep its campaign focused on development politics. But what is likely to muddle that script is the murder charges against the party’s candidate from the Danapur Assembly seat.

Must Read

Still got questions about the Covid pandemic? Dr Randeep Guleria, Dr Gagandeep Kang and Dr Chandrakant Lahariya, three of India’s leading healthcare experts, answer some of the most contentious questions in their forthcoming book titled Till We Win: India’s Fight Against Covid-19 Pandemic

In the latest edition of  The Indian Express Idea Exchange, former Union minister Arun Shourie spoke about why the decline of courts and democratic institutions in this government is worse, the differences between Vajpayee and Modi regimes, and the reason why he is not enamoured with numbers in policymaking as situations change. 

On this day, a 100 years ago, a mutiny took place in Jalandhar and Solan in support of the Irish freedom movement. Of the 88 men involved, 77 were sentenced to imprisonment; only the ringleader, Private James Daly, was executed.

Boating resumed in Sukhna Lake, Chandigarh, on Sunday. [Kamleshwar Singh]


  • The Congress chief in Kerala called a woman who had accused several ministers of the previous Congress-led UDF government of raping her, a “prostitute”, on Sunday..
  • Munger Police Sunday lodged a case against some 25 unidentified policemen for “opening lathicharge on devotees” during Durga puja idol immersion on the night of October 26.
  • Seeking reservation in jobs, among other demands, members of the Gujjar community laid siege to railway tracks in Bharatpur on the Delhi-Mumbai line on Sunday. 
  • The Congress’s Jalaun district president was beaten up by two sisters on Sunday for allegedly calling and harassing the elder sister regularly. 
  • Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar and Home Minister Anil Vij on Sunday said they are considering bringing a legislation to deal with cases of “love jihad”.

And Finally

Eighty-year-old Kanta Prasad, who runs the now famous Baba Ka Dhaba in South Delhi, has now filed a complaint against YouTuber Gaurav Wasan for allegedly misappropriating money that was raised to help him and his wife.

Delhi Confidential: One of the busiest campaigners for NDA, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has been trying to accommodate as many rallies as possible in Bihar in his schedule. But the hectic schedule has not stopped him from having jalebis in the evening.

In today’s episode of Three Things Podcast, we discuss how many in the country’s financial capital have seen their jobs vanish and savings erode.

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