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Saturday, March 06, 2021

Daily Briefing: Pangong disengagement commences; Twitter to restructure its India team

From a dacoit museum set up by police at Bhind in Madhya Pradesh’s Chambal belt, to an alleged data leak on homegrown microblogging platform Koo; here are today's top stories.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
February 12, 2021 8:19:40 am
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Good morning, 

Big Story

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh’s measured tone in Parliament on the Pangong disengagement underscored the need to avoid any kind of chest thumping from the ruling establishment pending the resolution of unresolved issues. The focus on the next round of talks with the Chinese is likely to be on other friction points in Galwan Valley, Hot Springs, Gogra Post and Depsang Plains. 

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Only in the Express

In part-2 of The Indian Express investigation into the Covid-19 testing data from six primary health care centres in Bihar, it was found that 0000000000 has been entered in records as the “mobile number” of scores of people who were shown as tested for Covid. Meanwhile, the Bihar government ordered an inquiry into the findings of the investigation. The Opposition RJD said it will raise the issue in Parliament today.

Executives from Twitter agreed to “restructure” its India team and assign more senior executives to its local offices so that it can better handle legal compliance-related issues, senior government officials told The Indian Express. The IT Ministry pushed for these changes as part of its effort to “better manage communications” between the Government of India and the global team of Twitter.

The raids on the office of online news platform NewsClick and residences of its directors by the Enforcement Directorate (ED), which continued for the third straight day Thursday, are linked to foreign remittances allegedly totalling Rs 30.51 crore, The Indian Express has learnt.

Front Page

Canadian PM Justin Trudeau said he held a “good discussion” with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi on a host of important issues, including the recent protests in the National Capital. But the reference to “recent protests” was not part of the Indian government’s readout of the telephone conversation between the two world leaders on Wednesday. 

Rescue operations were briefly halted following a rise in water levels at  Rishi Ganga and Dhauli Ganga rivers, the sites of Sunday’s flash flood disaster in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district. With more than 160 people still missing, authorities admitted that they could give no time frame on when they would be able to reach 34 of them believed to be stuck inside a tunnel in Tapovan area. 

Must Read

The gun used by Phoolan Devi, a tape recorder that belonged to Nirbhay Gujjar, letters with ransom demands, chains used to tie captives — there will be all of these and more at a museum that is coming up at Bhind in Madhya Pradesh’s Chambal belt, once the home of some of the country’s most dreaded dacoits. But what’s really unique about this venture is the force behind it — Bhind Police.

A French cybersecurity researcher alleged that he could access the personal data of users on the homegrown microblogging platform Koo, including their email ID, date of birth, marital status and gender. But Koo’s CEO said the visible data was only what the user had “voluntarily shown on their profile” and hence “cannot be termed a data leak”.

In a bid to replace lithium-ion batteries and reduce India’s dependence on other countries for its imports, the government will work out a policy to institutionalise research and development on the next generation of battery technologies for electric vehicles, like metal-ion, metal air, hydrogen fuel cell, etc. 


In a letter addressed to heads of schools affiliated with it, the CBSE has suggested that the next academic session be commenced on April 1.

The Enforcement Directorate filed charges against journalist Siddique Kappan and four other PFI members for allegedly funding and participating in the 2019-20 anti-CAA protests, the February 2020 Delhi riots and the protests around the death of a woman in Hathras.

The Supreme Court rejected the bail plea of activist Akhil Gogoi, who was arrested under the UAPA for his alleged role in “violent protests” against the 2019 amendments to the Citizenship Act.

On the second day of former President Donald Trump’s Senate impeachment trial, House Democrats unveiled chilling new security footage of the angry mob that had broken into the US Capitol last month.

The Ministry of Civil Aviation increased the minimum and maximum airfares across all bands, in a move that, on the one hand, would provide big relief to financially distressed airlines but, on the other, would make air travel costlier for passengers at least till March 31.

And Finally 

In Covid times and a bio-secure environment, the England team management puts a bigger emphasis on rotation rather than retaining a winning combination. But who will they pick?

Delhi Confidential: Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu is known for wordplay. On Thursday, his word of choice was “principle”. It started with a suggestion at a meeting of leaders that an in-principle decision be arrived at on the business to be taken up in the House. Welcoming the suggestion, Naidu in his characteristic style came up with a principle that applies to all principles.

In today’s episode of ‘3 Things’, we talk about the significance of the new disengagement process between India and China in Ladakh, the tussle between the government of India and Twitter, and Home Minister Amit Shah’s latest jabs against West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

Until tomorrow, 

Leela Prasad G and Rahel Philipose

Express Cartoon by EP Unny.

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