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Daily Briefing: Debris of old temples, Hindu motifs found in Gyanvapi mosque, says survey report; ISRO to conduct ‘abort missions’

From the row over Varanasi and Mathura mosques to the latest from the Cannes Film Festival, here are the top reads from today’s edition.

Top news on May 21, 2022

Good morning,

The Big Story

In claims likely to deepen the Kashi Vishwanath-Gyanvapi row, two reports submitted to the Varanasi court on a videography survey of the mosque complex state that debris of old temples were found inside, and Hindu motifs such as bells, kalash, flowers and trishul were visible on pillars in the basement. The Supreme Court, meanwhile, will resume hearing the matter today.

Regarding another disputed site, a district court in Mathura has allowed a plea by the Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi Trust and other private parties seeking ownership of the land on which the Shahi Idgah Mosque is built. The Idgah is next to the Sri Krishna Janmabhoomi Sthal, where the deity Krishna is believed to have been born.

Only in the Express

ISRO will conduct two unmanned “abort missions”, one in September and the other in December, to simulate failure and ensure crew safety as part of its roadmap for Gaganyaan, the country’s first manned flight to space, in 2024, ISRO chairman S Somanath told The Indian Express.

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From the Front Page

Nikhat Zareen emerged as the flyweight (52 kg) world champion with a unanimous decision win over Jitpong Jutamas of Thailand. Her father, Mohammad Jameel, talks to The Indian Express about her journey, struggles and inspiration. “To win a gold in the world championships is something which will act as an inspiration to Muslim girls as well each girl in the country to aim to achieve bigger in life,” he said.

The Supreme Court enhanced the punishment imposed on Navjot Singh Sidhu over the death of a 65-year-old man in a road rage case following a plea from the victim’s family. The apex court has sentenced the ex-Punjab Congress chief to a year’s rigorous imprisonment — apart from the Rs 1000 fine it had imposed four years ago. Soon after the order became public, Sidhu posted on Twitter: “Will submit to the majesty of law…”

In another case, the Supreme Court ruled that recommendations of the GST Council cannot be binding on the Centre and states. This came on an appeal against a Gujarat High Court order quashing the Central notification levying Integrated Goods and Services Tax (IGST) on importers for ocean freight. The apex court upheld the High Court’s order. “It is not imperative that one of the federal units (Centre or states) must always possess a higher share of power over the other units,” the court said.


Must Read

Two days ago, the Supreme Court ordered the release of AG Perarivalan, one of the seven convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. But the families of the victims who died with the former Prime Minister in a suicide bomb attack at Sriperumbudur in Tamil Nadu on May 21, 1991, said the verdict was an “injustice” to them. “My mother returned home in a plastic bag. That was the image that I remember. Why does no one talk about our pain and suffering? For him (Perarivalan), it was a 31-year suffering, but, for us, it’s a suffering for life,” said Abbas, the son of Santhani Begum, a Mahila Congress leader killed in the blast.

Pratap Bhanu Mehta writes on what the two-front war in Ukraine means for the world: “Something creative may emerge from this crisis as economies restructure. But that is in the long run. Under present conditions, the second-order effects of the war in Ukraine have magnified a great deal. In the US, inflation could potentially deepen America’s political woes. It certainly hands Republicans an advantage.”

The rupee closed at a record low of 77.72 against the dollar on Thursday, a loss to over 6% in the last one year as it gets weighed down by rising inflation, interest rates, exit of foreign investors and plunging markets. The depreciation is expected to impact the economy in general and various segments such as imports, mainly fuel prices, and push up inflation. Why the fall? What will be the impact? We explain.


And Finally…

Shubhra Gupta reports from Cannes Film Festival: Tom Cruise is one of your permanently switched on Peter Pan stars: he doesn’t seem to have aged a day since he appeared In and As Top Gun in 1987. The premiere of the sequel, Top Gun, Maverick, which comes more than thirty years after the original, was a fully starry, fully Cannes moment. Cruise waved to the screaming crowds which had been lining the Croisette for hours, happily posed for selfies, as the band belted out ‘Great Balls Of Fire’, that anthem from the original movie which had all of us bopping along.

Delhi Confidential: The Congress’ decision to not invite its state ministers, PCC working chiefs and national spokespersons to the Udaipur Chintan Shivir had led to much heartburn. The party is now planning a day-long session with them, which would be attended by Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and the top leadership.

🎧 In this episode of the ‘3 Things’ podcast, we discuss the Lancet Commission’s report on pollution. We also discuss the Puri heritage corridor project and the SC verdict on the Sidhu case.

Until tomorrow,
Rahel Philipose and Sonal Gupta

Business As Usual by EP Unny


First published on: 20-05-2022 at 07:31:41 am
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