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Sunday, January 17, 2021

Daily briefing: PM tells states to start planning for vaccine rollout; Govt bans 43 more apps with China links

From UP clearing the 'love jihad' law to several key farmer leaders in Haryana being detained in the dead of the night, here are today's top stories.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | November 25, 2020 9:17:42 am
Daily Briefing: Govt calls for talks on Dec 30, says pressure won't work on PM Modi; Tesla preparing to start operations in India by early 2021A look at the top news today, January 5, 2021.

Good morning,

The Big Story

In a virtual meeting with Chief Ministers, Prime Minister Narendra Modi sought individual plans from them to prepare a final blueprint of the country’s largest immunisation drive. In the meantime he told them to work towards bringing the positivity rate under 5 per cent and the fatality rate under 1 per cent.

From the Front Page

Former chief minister Farooq and Ommar Abdullah, Farooq’s sister Suraiya Matto, National Conference offices in Jammu and Srinagar, and a Trust once owned by the Congress have illegally occupied state land, according to J&K administration’s fresh list of illegal beneficiaries of the Roshni Act.

A jail term of up to 10 years and a minimum fine of up to Rs 50,000 are among the provisions included in a draft ordinance cleared by the Uttar Pradesh Cabinet to check “unlawful religious conversions” and “inter-faith marriages with the sole intention of changing a girl’s religion”. Such marriages, according to the ordinance, would also be declared null and void.

Online retail service AliExpress, on-demand courier service Lalamove and at least 15 dating apps with Chinese links were among the 43 mobile apps banned by the Centre, citing “sovereignty and integrity of India”. The move follows the on 177 apps over two rounds in June and September this year.

Senior Congress leader and Rajya Sabha MP Ahmed Patel passed away Wednesday morning after suffering multiple organ failures due to his deteriorating health as a result of Covid-19.

Only in the Express

Taking note of the The Indian Express investigation into the pre-Matric scholarship scam, the Ministry of Minority Affairs listed five key preventive measures to plug the loopholes. Among the measures include conducting random checks, using fraud detection software and preparing a listor suspicious institutions.

Must Read

Hours after the Haryana government announced that it will seal state borders ahead of a farmers’ march against the Centre’s farm laws, state police conducted raids in the dead of the night and took several farmer leaders into preventive custody.

Amid concerns that a Covid-19 vaccine would require an efficient, countrywide cold chain infrastructure, the dairy industry and its reliance on a temperature-controlled supply chain to carry out artificial inseminations could offer some answers to policymakers and public health professionals.

From state capital Thiruvananthapuram to commercial hub Kochi, unconventional non-political movements have fielded candidates for Kerala’s upcoming local body elections. All of them depend on crowdfunding and hope to claim the electoral space available at a micro local level, where familiarity and accessibility matter the most.

To cope with the effects of the lockdown, the Maharashtra government has decided to give financial aid and 5-kg ration to 5,600 sex workers of Mumbai every month till the Covid-19 pandemic is over. But NGOs point out that a larger share of sex workers are missing from government’s list of beneficiaries to get the financial aid.


# Shiv Sena MLA Pratap Sarnaik, who had initiated a breach of privilege motion against Republic TV Editor Arnab Goswami, was the target of ED raids on Tuesday.

# The Allahabad High Court has said that “two adults are free to choose their partner” while hearing a plea challenging an inter-faith marriage.

# Journalist Priya Ramani, on trial in a defamation case filed by former Union minister M J Akbar, told a Delhi court that she will not settle the case with Akbar and stands by her statement.

# Stubble burning increased by 46 per cent in Punjab and dropped by 28.6 per cent in Haryana this year in comparison to last year, according to official data.

# Cyclone Nivar is predicted to intensify into a severe cyclonic storm in the next 12 hours and into a very severe cyclonic storm in the subsequent 12 hours.

And Finally…

The Indian cricket team will go retro for the limited-overs series in Australia by donning the iconic dark-blue team kit from the 1992 World Cup. The jersey marked the introduction of coloured-clothing, white balls and floodlight at a 50-over World Cup.

Delhi confidential: Lok Sabha MP Karti Chidambaram on Tuesday sprang a surprise on the party, suggesting that Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra should contest the by-election for Kanyakumari Lok Sabha seat in Tamil Nadu.

Until tomorrow,

Leela Prasad G and Rahel Philipose

Express cartoon by EP Unny.

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