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Daily Briefing: ‘Never told to stay back as T20 team captain,’ says Kohli; Cabinet clears push to raise marriage age of women

Sources told The Indian Express that following the Cabinet's approval, the Government will introduce an amendment to the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006, and consequently bring amendments to the Special Marriage Act and personal laws such as the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
December 16, 2021 8:18:56 am
A look at the top news today, December 16, 2021.

Good morning,

The Big Story 

Making his displeasure known at the way in which the change in white-ball captaincy has been handled by the BCCI, Test skipper Virat Kohli openly contradicted board president Sourav Ganguly’s version of events, saying no one had asked him to stay back as T20 captain once he decided to quit due to workload issues. Kohli said that he came to know about his subsequent removal as ODI captain “one-and-a-half hours before the selection meeting” on December 8 for the South Africa Test series.

Only in the Express 

More than a year after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the plan during his Independence Day address of 2020, the Union Cabinet passed a proposal to raise the legal age of marriage for women from 18 to 21 years — the same as men. Sources told The Indian Express that following the Cabinet’s approval, the Government will introduce an amendment to the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006, and consequently bring amendments to the Special Marriage Act and personal laws such as the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955.

Pratap Bhanu Mehta writes on the limits of the Hindu vs Hindutvavadi debate: Don’t expect the metaphysical project of defining a true Hindu to bell the political cat of building a decent society

From the Front Page 

The Opposition was up in arms in Lok Sabha forcing proceedings to be adjourned for the day as it revived its demand for the sacking of Minister of State for Home Affairs Ajay Mishra ‘Teni’ whose son is one of the accused in the Lakhimpur Kheri case. Congress, DMK and Left parties MPs came to the Well of the House, raising slogans seeking “justice for farmers”. But the TMC did not join the protest and its members remained in their seats.

Group Captain Varun Singh, the lone survivor of the December 8 helicopter crash near Coonoor that killed Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat, his wife and 11 other military personnel, succumbed to his injuries on Wednesday. Singh had been battling for his life at the Air Force Command Hospital in Bengaluru. With Singh’s passing, all 14 passengers on board the helicopter have now died.

Must Read 

The militancy in Kashmir is witnessing two key shifts in pattern: J&K Police have emerged as the prime target and the main stage of attacks has shifted from South Kashmir to Srinagar city over the past few months. Official data from 2021 show that for the first time in a year, the number of police personnel killed by militants has outnumbered the collective toll of other security personnel who were targeted in the Valley: 19 of the 27 killed.

Declared ‘Indian’ in 2016 and subsequently ‘foreigner’ in 2021 by the same Foreigners Tribunal (FT), Hasina Bhanu, a 55-year-old resident of Assam’s Darrang district will walk out of detention on Thursday, following the intervention of the Gauhati High Court. “We are feeling relieved. She was already declared Indian in 2016, but the same court put another bideshi (foreigner) case on her in 2019…made us run around, spend a lot of money and harass us,” Bhanu’s brother-in-law said. 

Among the candidates for the upcoming gram panchayat polls in Gujarat’s Chhota Udepar village  is Mumbai-based model, Aeshra Patel, contesting for the sarpanch post. “When I spent the days at home during the lockdown, I realised how much the village still has to achieve,” she explained. Patel had grown up in a farmer family — her father, Narhari Patel, has also served as a sarpanch from 1989 to 1994 and 2012 to 2017 and was a member of the BJP

In a fresh blow to the BJP, Goa urban development and social welfare minister Milind Naik resigned from ministership hours after Congress leaders in the state named him in a sex scandal. Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said that he had accepted his resignation and a “free and fair” investigation will be initiated. 

And Finally 

“I kept seeking IAF support from the Brigade headquarters only to be told that war had not yet been declared. I said, ‘it’s declared for me’.” Five decades may have passed since Lieutenant Colonel (retd) Surinder Kapur led the troops that captured Shyamganj — a village along the border of West Bengal that was well-entrenched with the Pakistani army — but memories of the mission are still fresh. Today his battalion, 1 Jammu & Kashmir Rifles, is said to epitomise the blood, sweat and tears that go into war.

Delhi Confidential: When former Governor P Sathasivam told PM Modi that farmers, particularly in southern states, were unaware of the Centre’s initiatives for them, the PM got him booklets that explain the government’s programmes. But Sathasivam was quick to point out that farmers in south India would not be able to follow booklets in Hindi and English. He said these booklets should also be available in regional languages – a suggestion, PM Modi accepted, according to sources. 

In this episode of the ‘3 Things’ podcast, Director, CSIR-IGIB Dr Anurag Agarwal, India’s top genome sequencer, answers our questions about the Omicron variant.

Until tomorrow,
Leela Prasad G and Rahel Philipose

Express Cartoon by EP Unny.

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