• The Nation will celebrate 74th Independence Day tomorrow. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hoist the National Flag and address the nation from the ramparts of Red Fort.

  • President Ram Nath Kovind hailed the efforts of the Centre, State and Union Territories in efffective management of the COVID-19.

  • President Ram Nath Kovind highlighted some of the flagship schemes of the government including Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Yojana, One Nation, One Ration Card, Vande Bharat Mission.

  • In Rajasthan, the Congress government led by Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, today won the motion of confidence through voice vote.

  • India has welcomed the normalisation of relations between UAE and Israel. Addressing a press briefing, Spokesperson of Ministry of External Affairs, Anurag Srivastava .

  • India today conducted a record high of nearly eight lakh 50 thousand Covid tests in a single day. This has taken the cumulative tests to over two crore 76 lakh.

  • United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres has welcomed the agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates to establish full diplomatic ties.

  • Total recoveries from COVID-19 in the country today inched closer to touch the two million mark. A total of 17 lakh 51 thousand 555 people have recovered in the country so far.

  • Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau has ordered probe into the Air India Express aircraft crash at Kozhikode airport.

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that India will continue to support the Maldives in mitigating the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that the tax system in the country is becoming faceless and it will give the tax-payer a feeling of fairness and fearlessness.

  • Crossing the 8 lakh/day milestone of tests in a single day, India has registered a record high of 8,30,391 tests conducted in the last 24 hours in India.

  • In view of the nation-wide Corona  pandemic, the Fit India Freedom Run has been ideated in a unique way. Participants can run at their own place (wherever they are) and at their own pace (at a time convenient to them) between August 15, the 73rd Independence Day and October 2, the 151st Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.

    Armed forces including the Border Security Force (BSF), Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) will participate in the largest country-wide run. They will be joined by the Indian Railways, CBSE and ICSE schools. Fitness corporates Procam and Goqii will also join hands. This is besides the participation from the 75-lakh strong volunteer base of the Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS) and the National Service Scheme (NSS) of the youth affairs department, and the country-wide presence of trainees of the Sports Authority of India, all of who will run for a fitter India. 

    Lauding the participation of organizations from all across the country, Kiren Rijiju said, “I am delighted to see such enthusiasm to participate in the Fit India Freedom Run. If we can galvanise all employees, their families and the larger community to participate in the run, it will be a fitting tribute to the spirit of Independence.  It is the vision of the Honourable Prime Minister that the Fit India Movement should be a people’s movement. It is  clear now that the vision has indeed turned to reality.”

    “Like the Director General of BSF said, the BSF jawans and the people around the border areas will be running holding up flags in the early morning and there cannot be a better boost to your patriotism and this helps tremendously in the way you think and perform as a citizen of India. The culture in our forces is beautiful. It will be a massive exercise if our CRPF, BSF and ITBP forces lead the freedom run. This Freedom Run will be like a celebration and festival,” Rijiju added.

    The excitement is the same among the CRPF camp. “Every CRPF jawaan is happy they are getting involved in this run along with their families. The participation is expected to reach over 12 lakh. The jawaans will also promote the run in their nearby community. The CRPF Jawans have set a target of covering at least 1crore km during the Fit India Freedom Run. This is a testament of their courage,” said Anand Parkash Maheshwari, Director General, CRPF.

    Students, Parents, Teachers of all CBSE and CISCE schools will also participate in the run. CBSE Chairman Manoj Ahuja and ICSE Chairman Dr G Immanuel said that every school across the country, under the education board, both CBSE and CISCE will participate in the run.

    By Tapas Bhattacharya

  • Informing the development External affairs minister S Jasahankar in a tweet said that ‘India demonstrates solidarity with the people of Lebanon in the aftermath of the tragic explosions in Beirut."

    Earlier, expressing solidarity with the crisis-hit Lebanon, India’s permanent representative to United Nations, T S Tirumrti in a statement had said that "As a country with which India has had traditionally close and historical relations I would like to express our solidarity with Lebanon at this juncture."

     In a statement on the humanitarian aid to Lebanon, the permanent representative had informed that India is immediately sending more relief and humanitarian material of medicines; foodstuff and other essential items alleviate the difficulties on the ground. “The Indian government is also discussing with Lebanon on ways to contribute further” Tirumurti added.

    The explosion at the Beirut Port on August 4th has almost wiped out the neighbourhood, leaving about 2,50,000 people homeless, destroying business centers, and burning down grain stockpiles. It is estimated that the blast has wiped out up to 25% off of the country’s GDP

    To tide over the struggling Lebanese, the world community has come together in solidarity. French President Emanuel Macron was one of the first global leaders to visit Beirut immediately after the blast. Many countries and international aid organisations have sent tonnes of essential supplies for the people of Lebanon. An international donor conference was also held on Sunday, which was hosted by the French President and attended by global leaders including US President Donald Trump and 15 other heads of state. The leaders pledged approximately $300 million in aid to Lebanon with a caution that transparency must be ensured in using the aid.

    In the aftermath of Beirut blast, earlier this week, the present Lebanese government has also resigned after violent protests erupted across the country blaming the government of corruption and mismanagement of the economy, to make space for a new government.

    Report by Abhishek Jha

  • Flood affected people in Sirajganj, Bogura, Natore, Naogaon and Pabna districts started returning to normal life as flood situation improved there, reports the official news agency BSS.

    According to the latest bulletin of the Flood Forecast and Warning Centre (FFWC) issued at 9 a.m. on Friday, water level showed increasing trend at 28 points. It declined at 68 points across the four major river basins in Bangladesh. Rivers were flowing above danger level only at three points across the 101 points monitored by the FFWC on Friday morning. 

    In the Brahmaputra basin both Tessta and Brahmaputre rivers showed very slight increases in water level at 1 point each while Jamuna showed increasing water level at 4 points out of six monitored by the FFWC.

    The FFWC has forecast that the water level of Brahmaputra will remain stable while Jamuna may show an increasing trend  in the next 24 hours. Ganga  is forecast to decline.Padma water level will remain stable over the next 24 hours.

    At its peak last week, the floods affected more than 54 lakh people across 33 districts of Bangladesh. The Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief put the figure of death due to floods at 41, though several other reports quoting DGHS put the figure of people dying in flood related incidents at 161 till last week

    Rajesh Jha/Dhaka

  • Under the agreement, Israel would suspend its plans to annex parts of the West Bank. Making the announcement in the Oval Office, US President, said, the deal is a significant step towards building a more peaceful, secure, and prosperous Middle East.
    President Trump said, the UAE and Israel plan to exchange embassies and ambassadors and begin cooperation on a broad range of areas including tourism, education, healthcare, trade and security. President Trump also tweeted a joint statement between the US, UAE and Israel which said, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan have agreed to the full normalisation of relations. The statement called the peace agreement, a historic diplomatic breakthrough that will advance peace in the Middle East region.
    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said a new era has opened between Israel and the Arab world. Speaking in Jerusalem, he said, they are establishing full and official peace, full diplomatic agreement, with embassies, investments, commerce, tourism, direct flights between Tel Aviv and Dubai and Abu Dhabi. The UAE's ambassador to the United States, Yousef Al Otaiba, said the deal with Israel was a win for diplomacy and for the region. UAE will be the third Arab country to open relations with Israel, after Egypt and Jordan.

  • Ahead of the session, BJP and Congress held Legislature Party Meetings in Jaipur on Thursday. During the separate meetings, both parties discussed their strategy for Friday's session.
    Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot chaired the Congress Legislature Party meeting at his residence. The meeting was also attended by Congress leader Sachin Pilot along with 18 other party who had rebelled against Chief Minister Gehlot last month.
    The BJP has decided to move no-confidence motion against the Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government in the state assembly. The decision was taken in a BJP legislature party meeting.

  • Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju will launch the mega-event on Friday. In keeping with the current pandemic situation and social distancing norms, the government has decided to encourage participants of the event to run at their own pace - anywhere and at any time of their convenience.
    Additionally, they can break up their runs over several days in this period. The total kilometers clocked can be tracked using a Global Positioning System (GPS) watch or manually. The event is targeted to encourage fitness among the masses while following Covid-19 protocols. Speaking about the event, Mr Rijiju said, the Fit India Freedom Run is yet another endeavour to strengthen the Fit India Movement envisaged by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and involve the citizens to embrace fitness as a way of life.
    He said, the event is even more important at this time because staying fit is the key to building strong immunity, which is the need of the hour to fight Covid 19. Individuals and organizations can register for the event on the Fit India website. The event is being organised to mark the 74th Independence Day of India tomorrow and will continue till 151st birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi on 2nd of October.
    The motto of the ‘Freedom Run’ is to encourage fitness and help citizens to get freedom from obesity, laziness, stress, anxiety and other diseases. In the recent past as well, Fit India has organized numerous big scale events such as Fit India Plog Run and Fit India Cyclothon to take the message of fitness to the masses.

  • Maldivian  president Ibrahim Mohammad Solih in a tweet said that "A landmark moment in Maldives-India cooperation today as we receive Indian assistance of USD250 million as budget support and USD500 million for the Greater Malé Connectivity Project. I thank PM @narendramodi and the Indian people for their generosity and friendship"

    Yesterday, External affairs minister  S Jaishankar over a virtual conversation  with his Maldivian Counterpart Abdulla Shahid announced India’s decision to support the implementation of GMCP in Maldives, through a financial package consisting of a grant of USD 100 million and a new Line of Credit of USD 400 million. 

    EAM noted that this will be the largest civilian infrastructure project in Maldives, connecting its capital city Malé with three neighbouring islands. This landmark project will streamline connectivity between the 4 islands boosting economic activity, generating employment and promoting holistic urban development in the Malé region.

    India has also decided to start air travel bubble between with Maldives to facilitate movement of people from both sides for employment, tourism, medical emergencies. Maldives is the first neighboring country with which an air bubble is being operationalized. The first flight under the Air Bubble is expected to commence on August 18.

    EAM also conveyed the decision to renew quotas for supply of essential commodities to Maldives for the year 2020-21. The commodities include food items like potatoes, onions, rice, wheat, flour, sugar, dal and eggs as well as river sand and stone aggregates. The quotas assure food security, and the supply of essential construction items, and thereby provide certainty and price stability for such essential items in the Maldives.

    During COVID-19 pandemic, when supply chains got disrupted, India continued to support the supply of essential food and construction materials to Maldives. In May 2020, India had also gifted 580 tons of essential food items through Mission SAGAR

    India and Maldives have seen a dynamic and ambitious phase of the partnership in last couple of years. PM Modi and President Solih have met four times in the last one and-a-half years.  EAM Jaishankar said that the ‘Neighbourhood First’ foreign policy of India and the ‘India First’ policy of Maldives complement each other and now demonstrate concrete outcomes. President Solih is likely to visit India later this year, subject to the Covid-19 related conditions.

    Abhishek Jha

  • The address will be broadcast from 7 PM onwards on the entire national network of All India Radio and telecast over all channels of Doordarshan in Hindi followed by the English version.
    All India Radio will broadcast regional language versions of the President's Address from 9.30 PM on its respective regional networks. Broadcast of the address in Hindi and English on Doordarshan will be followed by broadcast in regional languages by regional channels of Doordarshan.

  • The court has fixed August 18 for starting trial in the case.

    Out of the 11 accused, three were present in the court during the hearing on Thursday while eight others including former Chief Justice S.K. Sinha are absconding.

    The ACC had filed the case against Justice Sinha and others in July last year for a fraudulent loan transaction and money laundering of 4 crore Taka from Farmers Bank in 2016. It had filed the chargesheet in a Dhaka court in December last year which was transferred to the court of a special judge in February this year.

    Justice Sinha was appointed as Chief Justice of Bangladesh in 2015. He had resigned amid controversy about a judgement of the Supreme Court which struck down the law giving power to parliament to remove justices of the Supreme Court. 

    Three months before his retirement, he had left for Australia in October 2017 and subsequently sent in his resignation from abroad. 

    In his autobiography Justice S.K. Sinha claimed that he stepped down as Chief Justice due to intimidation and threats. The allegations have been denied by the government.

    He is currently in the US. Earlier he had sought political asylum in Canada. 

    Justice S.K. Sinha was the first minority Chief Justice of Bangladesh belonging to the Hindu community. 

  • This came to light after they took SAI's mandatory Covid test that is given to all players, coaches and support staff on arrival.

    Both Sikki and Kiran are aysmptomatic. Both are locals of Hyderabad and have been attending the camps from their homes. Because of them are asymptomatic.

    Meanwhile, the academy has been closed down for sanitisation. All primary contacts of Sikki and Kiran have been traced and are being given the RT PCR test again. 

    Speaking from Hyderabad, chief national badminton coach Pullela Gopichand said, "SAI's mandatory covid test was given to all athletes, coaches, support staff and administrative staff at the badminton national camp, and two campers have tested positive for Covid 19.

    All necessary precautions as per protocol are being taken so that players can come back for training safely and as soon as possible."

  • Uttarakhand: Initiative launched to reduce human -animal conflict in Rajaji National Park

  • The village's mat making industry has centuries of history. The handicraft know-how, passed over generations isn't just a vocation for people, but is intertwined in their lives. Trade of thazhappaya made here were favourite for all even crossing the national  boundaries.

    Department of Culture had adopted Thazhava Panchayat as Heritage village fort rejuvenation of Thazhappaya handicraft industry. 
    Geographical Indication Registry granted G.I.Tag to Thazhappaya based on recommendations from Central Government's Ministry of Textiles.

    This beautiful village is now trying to reclaim it's lost glory in handicraft industry

  • The team of 16 recurve archers, 8 men and 8 women, along with 4 coaches and 2 support staff will report to ASI Pune on August 25 and undergo the 14 days mandatory quarantine inside the ASI campus.

    The athletes, coaches and support staff will be given the Covid test, which has been made mandatory by SAI for all athletes arriving at National Camps in SAI facilities across the country.

    Archers who will be joining the camp include, Tarundeep Rai, Atanu Das, B Dhiraj, Pravin Jadhav, Jayanta Talukdar, Sukhmanu Babrekar, Kapil, Vishwas, Deepika Kumari, Ankita Bhakat, L Bombayla Devi, Ridhi, Madhu Vedwan, Himani, Pramila Baria and Tisha Sancheti. Several of them are Olympic quota holders.    

    The guidelines of the Health Ministry as well as the SOP released by SAI, along with guidelines of the state government will be implemented on campus, while training is on.

  • In keeping with the current pandemic situation and social distancing norms, the government has decided to encourage participants of the event to run at their own pace - anywhere and at any time of their convenience.

    Additionally, they can break up their runs over several days in this period. The total kilometers clocked can be tracked using a Global Positioning System (GPS) watch or manually. 

    The mega-event will be launched by Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Kiren Rijiju on August 14. This event is targeted to encourage fitness among the masses while following Covid-19 protocols. 

    Individuals and organisations can register for the event on the Fit India website. The event is being organised to mark the 74th Independence Day of India on August 15 to  151st birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi on October 2.  

    The motto of the ‘Freedom Run’ is to encourage fitness and help citizens to get freedom from obesity, laziness, stress, anxiety and other diseases. In the recent past as well, Fit India has organized numerous big scale events such as Fit India Plog Run and Fit India Cyclothon to take the message of fitness to the masses.

  • With this number, the total recovered COVID-19 patients have touched nearly 17 lakh (16,95,982) today.

    The concerted, focussed and collaborative efforts of the Centre and the State/UT governments along with support of lakhs of frontline workers have ensured the successful implementation of TESTING aggressively, TRACKING comprehensively & TREATING efficiently through an array of measures including supervised home isolation, and effective clinical management of severe and critical patients through the Standard of Care advised by the Centre.

    With increasing number of recoveries, while the Recovery Rate has crossed 70% (70.77% today), the case mortality among COVID patients has further regressed to 1.96%, and steadily declining.

    The record high recoveries have ensured that the actual caseload of the country which is the Active Cases has reduced and currently is only 27.27% of the total positive cases. The recoveries exceed the active cases (6,53,622) by more than 10 lakh.

  • Launching Transparent Taxation - Honoring the Honest platform through video conferencing in New Delhi today, PM Modi said, tax administration should solve problems instead of confusing the tax-payer and everything from technology to rules should be simple.

    He said, identities of the tax-payer and tax-officer should not matter at all. The Prime Minister said, the effort is to make the tax system seamless, painless and faceless.

    He said, honest taxpayers play an important role in nation development. PM Modi said while it is the responsibility of tax officers to deal with taxpayers with dignity, people should also consider paying taxes as their responsibility.

    He said, Tax Payers Charter is a big step in the development journey of the nation. He added that it is a step towards bringing together rights and duties of the tax-payer and fixing the government's responsibilities towards the taxpayer.

    The Prime Minister said, in the last 6 years, the Government focused on Banking the Unbanked, Securing the Unsecured and Funding the Unfunded. He said, during this time, India has seen a new model of governance developing in tax administration.

    PM Modi said, today, every law and policy is taken out of the process and power centric approach and emphasis is given to make it people centric and public friendly. He said, it is the new governance model of the new India and the country is getting good results from it.

    PM Modi said, looking at the commitment towards reforms, the confidence of foreign investors is also increasing continuously towards India. He said, arrival of record Foreign Direct Investment to India even during the Corona crisis is an example of it.

    The Prime Minister said, new arrangements, new facilities starting today strengthens Government's commitment to Minimum Government-Maximum Governance. He said it will strengthen efforts of reforming and simplifying India's tax system.

  • The rains inundated low-lying areas and threw traffic out of gear.

    According to the India Meteorological Department, IMD, the Ayanagar weather station in the city recorded 99.2 millimetres of rainfall, the maximum in the city, during the 24-hour period ending at 8.30 this morning.

    Vehicles moved bumper to bumper during the morning rush hours, as the downpour led to heavy waterlogging at key road stretches.

    The downpour also brought down the rain deficiency in the national capital. Delhi has recorded seven per cent more rains than normal in the monsoon season so far.

    IMD said, the axis of monsoon remains close to Delhi-NCR and there is also a cyclonic circulation over southwest Uttar Pradesh. It said, light rains will continue over the next two to three days in the city.

  • The Union Health Ministry said, the recovery of over 16 lakh 95 thousand patients has been made possible because of the policy of Testing aggressively, Tracking comprehensively and Treating efficiently.

    During the last 24 hours, 56 thousand 383 people have been recovered. COVID-19 Recovery Rate has scaled another high of 70.77 per cent.

    The active cases has also reduced and currently comprises only 27.27 per cent of the total positive cases.

    The Ministry said, India has one of the lowest COVID-19 mortality globally with less than 2 per cent Case Fatality Rate. It said, as a result of supervised home isolation and effective clinical treatment, many States and Union Territories have lower than the national Case Fatality Rate.

  • Along with augmenting COVID-19 facilities, the Union Government has been providing medical supplies free of cost to the State/UT governments to supplement their efforts. Most of the products supplied by Government of India were not being manufactured in the country in the beginning.

    The rising global demand due to the pandemic resulted in their scarce availability in the foreign markets.

    With the combined efforts of Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW), Ministry of Textiles and Ministry of Pharmaceuticals, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and others, the domestic industry has been encouraged and facilitated to manufacture and supply essential medical equipment like PPEs, N95 masks, ventilators etc., during this period. As a result, resolve for ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ and ‘Make in India’ has been strengthened and most of the supplies made by the Union Government are domestically manufactured.

    Since 11th March 2020, the Union Government has distributed more than 3.04 crore N95 masks and more than 1.28 crore PPE kits to States / UTs / Central Institutions, free of cost. Also, more than 10.83 crore HCQ tablets have been distributed to them.

    In addition, 22533 ‘Make in India’ ventilators have been delivered to various States / UTs / Central Institutions. The Centre is also ensuring their installation and commissioning.

  • Speaking on the occasion PM Modi said that the process of Structural Reforms in the country has reached new heights today. The Prime Minister said the platform of  “Transparent Taxation - Honouring the Honest, has been launched to meet the requirements of the 21st century taxation system. He elaborated that the platform has major reforms like Faceless Assessment, Faceless Appeal and Taxpayers Charter.

    He said that Faceless Assessment and Taxpayers Charter have come into force from today while the facility of faceless appeal will be available for citizens across the country from 25th September i.e. Deen Dayal Upadhyay's birth anniversary.

    The new platform apart from being faceless is also aimed at boosting the confidence of the taxpayer and making him/her fearless.

    The PM said that the focus of the Government in the last six years has been “Banking the Unbanked, Securing the Unsecured and Funding the Unfunded” and that the platform of “Honouring the Honest” is in the similar direction.

    The Prime Minister praised the role of honest taxpayers in nation building and said that making the lives of such taxpayers easy is the responsibility of the government. “When the life of an honest taxpayer of the country becomes easy, he  moves forward and develops, then the country also develops and leaps forward,” PM added.

    The Prime Minister said the new facilities launched today are a part of the Government’s resolve to provide maximum governance with minimum government.

    He said that every rule, law and policy are made with an emphasis of them being people centric, public friendly rather than power centric. He said that the use of the new governance model is yielding good results.

    The Prime Minister said that an atmosphere is being created where primacy is being given to duty to execute all works.

    This is the result not because of force and fear of punishment but because of an understanding of the holistic approach that is being adopted. He said the reforms being launched by the Government are not in piecemeal but those aimed at delivering results with holistic perspective.

    The Prime Minister said the country’s tax structure needed fundamental reforms as the earlier tax structure was developed from the one created during pre-independent times. Even the several changes made during the post-independent times did not alter its fundamental character, he said.

    The Prime Minister said that the complexity of the earlier system made it difficult to conform.

    He said that simplified laws and procedures make it easy to comply. One such example is the GST, he said, which replaced dozens of taxes.

    The Prime Minister said that the latest laws reduced the legal burden in the tax system where now the limit of filing cases in the High Court has been fixed at up to 1 crore rupees and up to 2 crores for filing in the Supreme Court. Initiatives like the 'Vivaad Se Vishwas' Scheme pave the way for most of the cases to be settled out of court.

    Prime Minister said that the tax slabs have also been rationalised as a part of the ongoing reforms where there is zero tax upto an income of 5 lakh rupees, while the tax rate has reduced in the remaining slabs too. He said India is one of the countries with lowest Corporate Tax in the World.

  • In a Statement Russian Direct Investment Fund said that the agreement was reached with Brazilian State of Parana on Wednesday.

    As part of the signed strategic cooperation agreement, RDIF, together with pharmaceutical companies in the state of Parana, is organizing the production of Sputnik V vaccine and its distribution in Brazil and other Latin American countries.

    On Tuesday, the Russian Health Ministry registered the world's first Sputnik V vaccine for the prevention of COVID-19.

  • The first evacuation flight under the Vande Bharat Mission for the people stranded in Bangladesh due to Coronavirus pandemic had taken off from Dhaka for Srinagar on 8th May. Since then, close to 2800 people have been evacuated from Dhaka aboard Air India flights for various destinations in India.

    Till Thursday, 7 flights have left for Delhi, 4 flights for Srinagar, 3 for Kolkata, and one each for Chennai, Mumbai and Ahmedabad. 

    Apart from evacuation by flight, close to 500 Indians from Bangladesh have also been evacuated by the land route as well.

    The first evacuation of Indians stranded in Bangladesh due to COVID 19 pandemic,  through land route took place on May 28 when 230 Indian nationals left for India from three checkpoints on the border of Bangladesh and India for Tripura, Assam, Meghalaya and Manipur.

  • The Prime Minister also unveiled the next phase of direct tax reforms aimed at easing compliance and rewarding honest taxpayers in a bid to rebuild Indian economy.  

    PM Modi said, effort is to make the tax system seamless, painless and faceless. The Prime Minister said, amidst all the reforms introduced by the Centre, the number of people who have filed income tax returns has increased by about two-and-a-half crores in the last 6-7 years.

    He emphasised with faceless assessment, the taxpayer is assured of fair, courteous and rational behavior. He said,  the income tax department now has to take care of the taxpayer's dignity sensitively and  the department cannot doubt anyone without any basis. PM Modi said, taxpayers charter is also a big step in the country's development journey.

    Faceless assessment, taxpayer charter starts from Thursday and  faceless appeal to begin from September 25th.

  • Further, that there is no need to specify the make/type or any other details of the battery for the purpose of registration. However, the prototype of the electrical vehicle, and the battery (regular battery or the swappable battery) is required to be type approved by the test agencies specified under Rule 126 of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989.

    Attention of the States/UTs has been drawn to the relevant FORMS under Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989. Viz. FORM-21 (Sale certificate), FORM -22 (Road worthiness certificate issued by the manufacturer) and FORM-22-A (Road worthiness certificate issued for motor vehicles where fabrication of the body is done separately), required for the registration of motor vehicles under Rule 47 (Application for registration of Motor Vehicles), clearly specify engine number/motor number (In case of battery operated vehicles).

    The Government is striving to create an ecosystem to accelerate the uptake of electric mobility in the country. It is time to come together to work Jointly to achieve the broader national agenda to reduce vehicular pollution and oil import bill. This will not only protect the environment and reduce the oft import bill but also provide opportunities to sun rise industry.

    For the promotion of electrical two wheelers and three wheeler vehicles, there are recommendations brought to the notice of the Ministry to delink the cost of battery (which accounts for 30-40% of the total cost) from the vehicle cost. Vehicles could then also be sold in the market without the battery. This will make the upfront cost of the electrical 2 wheeler (2W) and 3 wheelers (3W) to be lower than ICE 2 and 3W. The battery could be provided separately by the OEM or the energy service provider.

  • The players had been asked to assemble at the campus on August 4. SAI said that the decision was made after having "detailed discussions with all stakeholders, including the chief coaches and core probables of both the teams and after giving the utmost priority to the safety and well-being of all the athletes".

    The schedule hence remains as was planned before despite six players from the men's team testing positive for COVID-19. Striker Mandeep Singh, captain Manpreet Singh, Jaskaran Singh, Surender Kumar, Varun Kumar and Krishnan B Pathak, who have tested positive for coronavirus, have all been shifted to a multi-speciality hospital. The players had been quarantined and undergoing treatment at the campus itself previously. The six players will rejoin the camp after completing their recovery and quarantine period.

    Women's coach Sjoerd Marijne said that the team is happy and "feeling safe". "Having spoken to all the players about the resumption, I have received a positive response from each of them. We look forward to working hard on the team's fitness in this protected environment," said the Dutchman.

    "It is good to know that everyone is eager while making sure their health and wellbeing is our collective priority. We are also in constant touch with the six players who have tested positive for COVID 19. They are in good spirits, and are looking forward to a quick recovery. Once recovered and after following protocol of quarantine, we look forward to having them back with us," said men's coach Graham Reid.

  • TESS, short for Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, scanned about 75 per cent of the starry sky during its primary mission that ended on July 4, NASA said on Tuesday.

    "TESS is producing a torrent of high-quality observations providing valuable data across a wide range of science topics," said Patricia Boyd, the project scientist for TESS at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.

    "As it enters its extended mission, TESS is already a roaring success."

    TESS monitors 24-by-96-degree strips of the sky called sectors for about a month using its four cameras.

    The mission spent its first year observing 13 sectors comprising the southern sky and then spent another year imaging the northern sky.

    Now in its extended mission, TESS has turned around to resume surveying the south, NASA said.

    The extended mission for TESS will be completed in September 2022.

    After spending a year imaging the southern sky, TESS will take another 15 months to collect additional observations in the north and to survey areas along the ecliptic -- the plane of Earth's orbit around the Sun -- that the satellite has not yet imaged.

    Among the mission's newest planetary discoveries are its first Earth-size world, named TOI 700 d, which is located in the habitable zone of its star, the range of distances where conditions could be just right to allow liquid water on the surface.

    TESS revealed a newly minted planet around the young star AU Microscopii and found a Neptune-size world orbiting two suns.

    In addition to its planetary discoveries, TESS has observed the outburst of a comet in our solar system, as well as numerous exploding stars.

    Even more remarkable, TESS watched as a black hole in a distant galaxy shredded a Sun-like star, NASA said.

  • "First of all, the production facilities in Russia will be oriented towards the domestic market, to meet the need of our citizens," Murashko said during a news conference on Wednesday.

    Russia will offer the vaccine to other countries when it has sufficient amounts, the minister said, adding that foreign nations' doubts about the effectiveness of the vaccine are unfounded.

    The platform where the vaccine was created has been thoroughly studied and its authors have accumulated a sufficient amount of scientific data to guarantee its safety, he added.

    The world's first registered vaccine against the novel coronavirus was announced by President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday during an online meeting with government officials.

    The vaccine, named Sputnik V, was developed by the Gamaleya National Center of Epidemiology and Microbiology, alongside the Russian Direct Investment Fund.

    Russia plans to produce at least five million doses of the vaccine a month from December through January, according to Alexander Gintsburg, director of the Gamaleya National Research Center.

    He said that the center is also preparing documents to obtain permission to test the vaccine on children.

    The vaccine for children will be the same as the one for adults, but will likely be administered in a different dosage, requiring additional testing, Gintsburg added.

    So far, Russia has tallied a total of 902,701 COVID-19 cases, including 15,260 deaths and 710,298 recoveries.

  • When it becomes functional, the Minister said, the travel time from Katra to Delhi will get reduced to around six and half hours, and from Jammu to Delhi to just about six hours.

    Sharing the details, Singh stated that once this express road corridor becomes functional, people will prefer to travel to Delhi by road instead of undertaking journey by train or by Air.

    “The hallmark of this road corridor is that it will connect the holy cities of Katra and Amritsar, and at the same time offer connectivity for some other major important religious shrines between the two destinations,” he said.

    Singh further informed that after completion of the survey by Feedback Consultants Ltd, the process of acquisition of land is nearly complete and the work on the ground has started.

    Estimated to cost over Rs 35,000 crores, the Minister said, the important cities through which this expressway corridor will pass include Jammu and Kathua in J&K, and Jalandhar, Amritsar, Kapurthala and Ludhiana in Punjab.

    Meanwhile, Singh said, simultaneous widening of the National Highway between Pathankot and Jammu is also being undertaken, to upgrade it from four lane to six lane, which will also prove to be a great boon for the commuters between Jammu, Kathua and Pathankot.

    Scheduled to be completed within a timeline of three years, Singh said, the road corridor will prove to be a path-breaking revolution in promoting industry and investments in the entire region.

    It will also pave the way for the growth of economic hubs in cities like Kathua and Jammu, he added.

    Singh, had been pursuing this project since 2015 and had for the first time about three and half years ago announced during a programme at Katra that he had submitted a proposal to this effect which had been accepted by the Minister for Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari but it would take time because of procedural issues.

    The minister thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the liberal Central funding to build a series of landmark new roads and bridges in the region during the last six years.

  • Under the new scheme, district-wise selection of beneficiaries would begin from August 17 and the beneficiaries would start receiving the amount in the bank account of a female family member on the first day of every month, starting from October, he said.

    “The “Orunodoi” would be the biggest scheme in Assam which would initially benefit at least 17 lakh families and the number would subsequently increase to 25 lakh, he added.

    “The main focus of the scheme on empowering women while contributing to economic development,” he told the media in Guwahati.

    However, Sarma clarified, that while selecting the beneficiaries, there would be economic criteria and “those who have certain movable and immovable assets including land, big houses, vehicles, electronic gadgets, and most government and semi-government employees, would be excluded”.

    A sum of Rs 280 crore has been earmarked for the new scheme.

    “Rs 830 per month aid would mean an additional annual income of Rs 10,000 to the poor households to meet their medical, nutritional, and academic needs besides to meet the additional spending during various festivals,” he said.

    The minister also said that under the “Orunodoi” scheme, priority would be given to households with widows, divorced, unmarried or separated women, and disabled persons.

    To avail the benefits of the scheme, the beneficiary should be a permanent resident of Assam and their composite household income should be less than Rs two lakh per annum, Sarma added.

  • The Congress leader had attended a television debate at 5 p.m. and complained of chest pain soon after the programme ended. He then fell unconscious and was rushed to the Yashoda Hospital, where doctors pronounced him dead.

    A resident of Ghaziabad, Tyagi was a member of the Uttar Pradesh Congress before becoming becoming the party’s national spokesperson.

    The Congress in a statement said, “We are deeply saddened by the sudden demise of Rajiv Tyagi, a staunch Congressman and a true patriot. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends in this hour of grief.”

    Congress leader Jitin Prasada said, “I am shocked and deeply saddened by his untimely demise.”

    BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra said, “I can’t believe that my friend Rajiv Tyagi is not with us any more. He was in a debate with me at 5 p.m. Life is uncertain.”

  • The marathon was initially scheduled to take place on April 5 but was postponed to November due to COVID-19 crisis in the city.

    The organisers have now confirmed that this year's marathon have been entirely scrapped and will now take place next year.

    This development comes just days after it was announced that 2020 edition of the London marathon will take place on October 3 but it will be only an elite race.

    This year's Boston, Berlin, New York and Chicago marathons have already been cancelled due to coronavirus pandemic.

  • The ministers took oath in front of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in a grand ceremony held in the central hills of Kandy.

    Along with the Cabinet ministers, 39 state ministers were also sworn in.

    President Gotabaya Rajapaksa retained the Defence Ministry. Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa was appointed as the Minister of Finance, Urban Development, Housing, Buddhist Affairs, Religious and Cultural Affairs.

    Dinesh Gunawardena was sworn in as Minister of Foreign Affairs. Prasanna Ranatunga was sworn in as Minister of Tourism and Keheliya Rambukwella was sworn in as Minister of Mass Media.

    Some of the notable state ministers sworn in were Chamal Rajapaksa who took oaths as State Minister of Internal Security, Home Affairs and Disaster Management, and Shehan Semasinghe who was sworn in as State Minister of Samurdhi (prosperity), Micro Finance, Self-Employment and Business Development.

    Sri Lanka held its Parliamentary election on August 5 under strict health guidelines amid Covid-19 pandemic which has infected over 2,800 people in the island country so far.

    The election was held to elect a new 225-member Parliament.

    SLPP won a landslide victory by securing 145 seats, while the United People’s Power, led by former presidential candidate Sajith Premadasa polled in as runner-up by securing 54 seats.

    Sri Lanka’s new Parliament will convene on August 20.

  • Biden, 77, embraced the significance of naming the first Black woman to a major party’s presidential ticket, but he focused on other attributes Harris brings to the ticket. He hailed the California senator, the 55-year-old former prosecutor who a year ago excoriated Biden on a primary debate stage, as the right woman to help him defeat Trump and then lead a nation facing crises in triplicate: a pandemic, wounded economy and long-simmering reckoning with systemic racism.

    Harris, Biden said at a high school gymnasium in his hometown of WIlmington, Delaware, is “smart, she’s tough, she’s experienced, she’s a proven fighter for the backbone of this country.”

    “Kamala knows how to govern. She knows how to make the hard calls. She’s ready to do this job on day one,” he continued.

    Biden spoke of her experience questioning Trump administration officials in the Senate, and highlighted the historic nature of her pick, noting she’s the daughter of immigrants from India and Jamaica.

  • The expert group deliberated on conceptualization and implementation mechanisms for creation of a digital infrastructure for inventory management and delivery mechanism of the vaccine including tracking of vaccination process with particular focus on last mile delivery.

    They discussed on broad parameters guiding the selection of COVID-19 vaccine candidates for the country and sought inputs from Standing Technical Sub-Committee of National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI).

    The group delved on the procurement mechanisms for COVID-19 vaccine, including both indigenous and international manufacturing along with guiding principles for prioritization of population groups for vaccination.

    The expert group discussed on the financial resources required for procurement of COVID-19 vaccine and various options of financing the same.

    Available options in terms of delivery platforms, cold chain and associated infrastructure for roll out of COVID-19 vaccination were also taken up.

    Further, strategy and follow-up action on all possible scenarios to ensure equitable and transparent delivery of vaccine was deliberated upon.

    Issues related to vaccine safety and surveillance were taken up and strategy for community involvement through transparent information and awareness creation were discussed.

    India’s support to its key neighbors and development partner countries for COVID-19 vaccines was deliberated upon.

    The expert group discussed that India will leverage domestic vaccine manufacturing capacity and will also engage with all international players for early delivery of vaccines not only in India but also in low and middle income countries.

    The Committee also advised all the States not to chart separate pathways of procurement.

  • Union Health Ministry said, the country's Test, Track and Treat strategy has achieved another peak with 18,852 test per million(TPM).

    The graded and evolving response has resulted in a testing strategy that steadily widened the testing net in the country. 

    To keep up with this strategy, the testing lab network in the country is continuously strengthened which as on today consists of 1421 labs in the country; 944 labs in the government sector and 477 private labs.  

    These include:

    •           Real-Time RT PCR based testing labs: 724 (Govt: 431 + Private: 293)

    •           TrueNat based testing labs: 584 (Govt: 481 + Private: 103)

    •           CBNAAT based testing labs: 113 (Govt: 32 + Private: 81)

  • In an advisory to Transport Secretaries of all the States and UTs, Union Road Transport & Highway Ministry  has clarified that vehicles without batteries can be sold and registered based on the type approval certificate issued by the Test Agency. 

    Further, that there is no need to specify the Make/ Type or any other details of the Battery for the purpose of Registration. 

    However, the prototype of the electrical vehicle, and the battery (regular battery or the swappable battery) is required to be type approved by the test Agencies specified under Rule 126 of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989. 

    Attention of the States/UTs has been drawn to the relevant FORMS under Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, Viz. FORM-21 (Sale certificate), FORM -22 (Road worthiness certificate issued by the manufacturer) and FORM-22-A (Road worthiness certificate issued for Motor vehicles where fabrication of the body is done separately), required for the registration of Motor Vehicles under Rule 47 (Application for registration of

    Motor Vehicles), clearly specify Engine number/Motor number (In case of battery operated vehicles).

    The Government is striving to create an ecosystem to accelerate the uptake of electric mobility in the country. 

    The MoRTH advisory emphasises  that it is time to come together to work jointly to achieve the broader national agenda to reduce vehicular pollution and oil import bill. 

    This will not only protect the environment and reduce the oil import bill but also provide opportunities to sun-rise industry. 

    For the promotion of electrical two wheelers and three wheeler vehicles, there are recommendations brought to the notice of the Ministry to delink the cost of battery (which accounts for 30-40% of the total cost) from the vehicle cost. 

    Vehicles could then also be sold in the market without the battery. This will make the upfront cost of the electrical 2 wheeler (2W) and 3 wheelers (3W) to be lower than ICE 2 and 3W. The battery could be provided separately by the OEM or the energy service provider. 

  • The loan will cover the construction of Jamuna railway bridge in parallel to the existing Bangabandhu Bridge, expansion of the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport, Dhaka Mass Rapid Transit Development Projects and Chattogram-Cox’s Bazar Highway improvement project among the seven projects. 

    The loan carries an interest rate of 0.65 percent with a repayment period of 30 years including initial 10 years as grace period. 

    Japan has been the single largest bilateral donor for Bangladesh since 2012. The total amount of its aid as Yen Loan has reached USD 22 billion (commitment base).

  • With this the number of positive cases in the Union territory has gone up-to 26,413.Of these 7,392 are active positive, 18,523 have recovered while 498 deaths have taken place due to this pandemic in the Union Territory.

    Moreover, 544 more COVID 19 patients have recovered and discharged from various hospitals of Jammu and Kashmir Union territory. 

    88 positive cases were reported from Srinagar district followed by 53 from Anantnag district and 52 from Pulwama district.

    Eight Covid-19 deaths took place in the Union Territory during the last 24 hours.

  • The Director General of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), Dr ABM Khurshid Alam told the local news agency that Bangladesh wants to first see the result of the clinical trial done in China before it is permitted to run human clinical trials in the country. 

    He said that Bangladesh is proceeding with caution as the test is sought to be conducted at the national level. 

    He asked who will be held accountable if any harm comes from the human trial?

    In the meanwhile, the government continued to gradually open up various sectors in the country with strict enforcement of the health guidelines in place. 

    The Ministry of Railways has announced that intercity rail services will start operating from 16th August resuming full operations by 30th of the month. 

    However, half of the seats in the trains will be kept vacant to maintain social distancing. 

    The High Court division of the Supreme Court also resumed its regular functioning partially on Wednesday after remaining closed for five months with health guidelines in place. 

    Some other departments like sports have also announced that they will be starting activities soon. 

    However, in order to contain further spread of Coronavirus in the country, the government has tightened the implementation of the health guidelines by levying fines on the people who don’t wear  masks in public places and defy other health instructions. 

    The death toll due to Coronavirus in Bangladesh crossed 3500 with 42 deaths reported on Wednesday in the last 24 hours. 

    According to the press release issued by the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) on Wednesday, 2995 fresh cases of Corona infection and 1118 recoveries were also reported from the country during the same period. 

    With this, the total number of people infected by Coronavirus in Bangladesh has crossed 2.6 lakh. The recovery rate in the country stands at 57.44 percent.

  • The AIFF's bid evaluation committee announced the decision post their meeting on Wednesday.

    The committee also granted permission to Sreenidhi FC to take part in the league from 2021-22 season onwards.

    Sudeva's inclusion means the number of participating teams go back to 11 after defending champions Mohun Bagan merged with Indian Super League (ISL) champions ATK to form a new entity ATK Mohun Bagan which will play in the ISL.

    Sudeva FC will also bring back top-level football back to the national capital after a brief hiatus. ISL outfit Delhi Dynamos had shifted bases to Odisha before the start of the 2019-20 season.

    Sudeva FC was earlier known as Moonlight FC, the current management of the club took control of the club in 2016.

    The bid for direct entry into next season's I-league had been initially submitted by Sudeva, Sreenidhi, and Shillong's Ryntih SC.

  • It still topped the list though accounting for 993 cases followed by Chengalpattu with 439 and Thiruvallur with 407.

    As per the daily official bulletin, 5871 persons tested positive for Covid-19 in Tamilnadu today.They included 5844 residents and 27 who had returned from outside the state.  

    A record equalling 119 deaths were reported today- 20 in Chennai ,11 in Thiruvallur and 9 each in Coimbatore and Tirunelveli - taking the state's total tally to 5278.

    The total number of cases in Tamil Nadu as of August 12 stands at 3,14,520.

    5633 patients were discharged today taking  the total number of recoveries in Tamil Nadu to 2,56,313.

  • The worst affected districts are Darbhanga, Samastipur, Saharsa, Muzaffarpur and East Champaran. As many as 24 people and 69 cattle have lost their lives in current flood fury.

    The water discharge from Kosi and Gandak Barrages has increased. More than 1.72 lakh Cusec discharge was recorded at Gandak barrage today. This has caused more inundation in already flood affected districts of East Champaran , Darbhanga, and Samastipur.

    As many as 33 NDRF and SDRF teams are engaged in rescue and relief work. Around 9 lakh people are being provided with cooked food, through 1211 community kitchen. Around 12,000 people are living in 7 relief camps.

    An ex-gratia of Rs 6000 per family has been distributed to 6.72 lakh flood-affected families through Direct Transfer of Benefit (DBT).

    The rivers Kosi, Bagmati, Kamla Balan, and Parman are above the danger mark at many places. The river Ganga is also on rise in Bihar, but is below the danger mark at all places.

    The Met office has predicted heavy rainfall at some places in the river catchment areas of Nepal and Bihar and light to moderate rainfall at some places during next 48 hours.

  • All six players tested Covid positive during SAI's mandatory Covid test, upon arrival at the National Camp in NCOE Bengaluru. 

    The decision to hospitalise them was taken so as to ensure that the players were attended to at all times and could be given the best possible treatment. All six athletes are in good health and recovering well.

    - Tapas Bhattacharya

  • Kamala Harris is currently the US Senator from California. Former US President Barack Obama has often described her as a trailblazer. If elected, Kamala Harris would be the first ever woman to be the Vice President of the United States and the first ever Indian-American and African Vice President of the country.

    Daughter of an Indian mother and a Jamaican father, Harris has known many firsts. She has been a county district attorney; the district attorney for San Francisco  - the first woman and first African-American and Indian-origin to be elected to the position.

    She was also the first female African-American and Indian-origin to become California's attorney general. Harris became the first Indian-origin and second African-American woman to join the Senate, winning the California seat vacated by Senator Barbara Boxer.

    Leading Indian-American groups across the US have lauded the selection of Kamala Harris as the Vice Presidential candidate, saying it was a moment of pride and celebration for the entire community in America.

  • The CBDT  has carried out several major tax reforms in direct taxes in the recent years. Last year the corporate tax rates were reduced from 30 percent to 22 percent and for new manufacturing units the rates were reduced to 15 percent. Dividend distribution tax was also abolished.

    The focus of the tax reforms has been on reduction in tax rates and on simplification of direct tax laws. Several initiatives have been taken by the CBDT for bringing in efficiency and transparency in the functioning of the IT Department. This includes bringing more transparency in official communication through the newly introduced Document Identification Number (DIN) wherein every communication of the Department would carry a computer generated unique document identification number. Similarly, to increase the ease of compliance for taxpayers, IT Department has moved forward with prefilling of income tax returns to make compliance more convenient for individual taxpayers. Compliance norms for startups have also been simplified.

    With a view to provide for resolution of pending tax disputes the IT Department also brought out the Direct Tax “Vivad se Vishwas Act, 2020” under which declarations for settling disputes are being filed currently. To effectively reduce taxpayer grievances / litigation, the monetary thresholds for filing of departmental appeals in various appellate Courts have been raised. Several measures have been taken to promote digital transactions and electronic modes of payment. The IT department is committed to take the initiatives forward and has also made efforts to ease compliances for taxpayers during the Covid times by extending statutory timeliness for filing returns as also releasing refunds expeditiously to increase liquidity in the hands of taxpayers.

    The upcoming launch of the platform for “ Transparent Taxation – Honoring the Honest “ by the Prime Minister will further carry forward the journey of direct tax reforms.

    The event will be witnessed by various Chambers of Commerce, Trade Associations, Chartered Accountants' associations and also eminent taxpayers, apart from the officers and officials of Income Tax Department. Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs, Nirmala Sitharaman and Minister of State for Finance and Corporate Affairs, Anurag Singh Thakur will also present on the occasion.

  • CBDT said, based on the credible information that few Chinese individuals and their Indian associates were involved in money laundering and hawala transactions through a series of shell entities, a search action was mounted.

    Search action revealed that at the behest of Chinese individuals, more than 40 bank accounts were created in various dummy entities, entering into credits of more than one thousand crore rupees over the period.

    A subsidiary of Chinese company and its related concerns have taken over 100 crore rupees bogus advances from shell entities for opening businesses of retail showrooms in India.

    Incriminating documents in respect of hawala transactions and laundering of money with active involvement of bank employees and Chartered accountants has been found as a result of search action. 

  • Speaking on the occasion, Union Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said, Krishi Megh is a step forward towards digital agriculture of New India. He said, Government of India and World Bank have funded National Agricultural Higher Education Project.

    The project is designed for strengthening the national agricultural education system in the country with the overall objective to provide more relevant and high-quality education to the agricultural university students.

    The Minister also stressed on enabling private investments in agriculture.

  • The decision has been taken during the DAC meeting chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in New Delhi to strengthen the Armed Forces by relying on indigenous capability to take forward the initiative on Atmanirbhar Bharat.

    With HAL having successfully developed Basic Trainer Aircraft (HTT-40) Prototypes and certification process underway, the DAC approved procurement of  Basic Trainer Aircraft from HAL to address the basic training requirements of the Indian Air Force.

    Post Certification 70 Basic Trainer Aircraft will be initially procured from HAL and balance 36 after operationalisation of HTT-40 fleet in IAF.

    The DAC also approved procurement of an upgraded version of Super Rapid Gun Mount (SRGM) which is fitted as the main gun onboard Navy and Indian Coast Guard  warships from BHEL to improve the fire power of Indian Navy.

    The upgraded version of SRGM has enhanced capability to perform against fast manoeuvring targets like missiles and Fast Attack Crafts and increase the maximum engagement range.

    Besides, the Council cleared  procurement of 125 mm Armour Piercing Fin Stabilized Discarding Sabot (APFSDS) ammunition for Indian Army as a Design and Development Case. The ammunition being procured will have a 70 per cent indigenous content.

    The DAC also gave approvals that are likely to speed up the procurement of AK 203 and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle upgrades.

  • Ending a four decade long wait of veterans, Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led NDA government announced the 'One Rank One Pension' scheme for ex-servicemen.

    Government's guideline that women should be considered for command roles and that all women officers are entitled to permanent commission is a major boost to empower women.

    In a major boost to the armed forces, the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) on Tuesday approved the procurement of defence equipment for an approximate cost of  over Rs. 8,722 crore, including 106 basic trainer aircraft for the Indian Air Force (IAF).

    The step will strengthen the armed forces by relying on indigenous capability to take forward the initiative on Atmanirbhar Bharat.

    Defence Minister Rajnath Singh’s recent announcement of a negative import list of 101 defence items as a major step towards self-reliant India is in line with this thinking of making the country self reliant in defence production.

    Director of Society for Policy Studies, Commodore Uday Bhaskar said, the recent announcement by Ministry of Defence regarding the new policy about enforcing an embargo on 101 inventory is a significant policy decision.

    Government is giving emphasis on positioning India among the top countries of the world in Defence and Aerospace sectors, from design to production, with the active participation of public and private sector fulfilling the twin objectives of self-reliance and exports.