August 18, 2021 8:27:02 am
Express in Afghanistan
For the second time since 1996, India has evacuated all its diplomats and personnel from the embassy, including Ambassador Rudrendra Tandon, from Afghanistan after the Taliban captured power. But the evacuation turned out to be more difficult than expected as the wait for approvals from the Taliban, which was supposed to be a “matter of minutes”, turned to hours.
Meanwhile, in Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security in which he was quoted as having said India should provide all possible help to “Afghan brothers and sisters who are looking towards India for assistance”.
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The Indian Express has learnt that the Collegium, for the first time, has recommended the names of three women judges for elevation to the Supreme Court, including one who could become the first woman Chief Justice of India.
From the Front Page
The Supreme Court issued pre-admission notice to the Centre on a batch of petitions seeking an independent probe into the Pegasus controversy while also observing that it will not ask the government to disclose information that affects national security interests.
In the two years since the ambitious Jal Jeevan Mission was launched by the Modi government, Bihar has performed the best in providing rural tap water connections. The state has gone from being among the bottom five in terms of rural tap water supply (with only 1.84% households having connections), to among the top four (86.96%).
The Uttar Pradesh government has decided to set up a unit of the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) in Deoband, the town in Saharanpur known for its Islamic seminary Darul Uloom Deoband. Interestingly, CM Yogi Adityanath’s media advisor Shalabh Mani Tripathi seemed to link the decision to the return of the Taliban in Afghanistan in a tweet announcing the state government’s latest move.
Javed Ahmed Dar, a BJP worker was shot dead outside his home by suspected militants in the Kulgam area of south Kashmir — the second such attack to take place in the region in just over a week. According to the BJP, Dar is the 21st party activist killed by militants in the last two years, with nine of them killed in Kulgam district alone in the last one year.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) arrested two women from Kannur in Kerala for allegedly encouraging young people to join the Islamic State (IS) and raising funds for the organisation’s activities. The women, who were believed to have been willing to join the terror outfit in West Asia or Afghanistan, were also helping an alleged IS recruit in Jammu and Kashmir, according to the agency.
Three weeks after violent clashes broke out at the Assam-Mizoram border, which left six Assam policemen dead, tensions escalated yet again following another bout of firing. While Mizoram alleged Assam Police opened fire on three Mizo civilians, injuring one, on the boundary along Hailakandi (Assam)-Kolasib (Mizoram) districts, Assam claimed miscreants from the other side fired first, after which Assam Police retaliated.
Before shuttler PV Sindhu won the historic bronze at the Olympics, her South Korean coach Park Tae Sang was relatively unknown. Soon after her victory, Park’s popularity shot through the roof — the earliest indication being his follower count on social media going from 328 to nearly 18,000 almost overnight. But his new-found fame came at a cost.
Delhi Confidential: After a video of a Taliban fighter weeping with joy after reaching Kabul began doing the rounds, Congress leader Shashi Tharoor tweeted that a Malayalam word could be heard in the video. Later, the journalist, who posted the original tweet, then clarified that there were no fighters from Kerala among the Taliban, and that they were Baluch whose language sounds similar to Malayalam and Tamil.
In today’s episode of ‘3 Things’, we look at a ground report from Kabul, where yesterday in a special Indian Air Force aircraft, India evacuated a total of 130 diplomats and around 20 Indians who were stranded in Afghanistan. We make sense of the Afghan crisis so far.
Leela Prasad G and Rahel Philipose
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