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The RSS is full of patriotism and is always striving to serve the country, the BJP said on Thursday as it defended the Hindutva organisation against the Opposition’s swipe at it for not using the tricolour as the display picture on its social media accounts. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had given a call to people to use the national flag as their social media profile picture between August 2-15 as the country gears up to celebrate the 75th anniversary of its independence.
While BJP leaders have followed this, critics have taken a dig at the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, considered the ideological mentor of the ruling party, and its senior functionaries for not doing so.
Hitting out at critics, BJP spokesperson Gaurav Bhatia told reporters, “Some people believe in creating controversies and dividing the country. They are levelling allegations against the BJP. The Congress and Rahul Gandhi have also targeted the RSS. Every fibre of the RSS is full of patriotism and a sense of service to the country.”
Be it during crisis like floods, earthquakes and the Covid outbreak, the RSS always strives to ensure that no one goes hungry. It also works for children’s education, he added.
Reports by apex auditing body CAG on Delhi government’s finances not tabled in the assembly for four consecutive years were finally presented before the House last month following the Lieutenant Governor Secretariat’s intervention, sources said on Thursday. These reports were tabled during the Monsoon session of the Delhi assembly in July.
The sources at the lieutenant governor’s office said five reports by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) for the years 2017-18, 2018-19, 2019-20 and 2020-21 titled the ‘State Finances Audit Report’, ‘Revenue Economic, Social & General Sectors and PSUs’, ‘Social General & Economic Sectors (Non-PSUs)’, ‘Finance Accounts of GNCTD’ and the ‘Appropriation Accounts of GNCTD’ were pending with the government.
“It took four letters from the L-G Secretariat dated September 24, 2021, March 10, 2022, April 6, 2022 and June 15, 2022 for the five reports of four years to be laid in the Assembly finally on July 5,” the sources said.
The Bombay High Court on Thursday expressed its displeasure with the Maharashtra government over low remuneration paid to members of a committee set up to oversee the publishing of writings and speeches of jurist-social reformer Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar.
A division bench of Justices Prasanna Varale and Kishore Sant noted that the government’s decision to pay Rs 10,000 per month to the non-government members of the committee was not a “welcome step”.
The bench was hearing a petition taken up suo motu (on its own) in December 2021 after media reports said the Maharashtra government had halted its project of publishing the literature of Ambedkar.
During earlier hearings, the court was informed that a 26-member committee, which included experts, was in place to overlook the publication of writings and speeches of social reformers, including Ambedkar.
The court had, on the last hearing in July, sought to know from the government how much remuneration was paid to the committee members who are of experts in their field.
On Thursday, the bench was informed by government pleader Purnima Kantharia that the non-government members were paid Rs 10,000 each month. There are 10 such members in the panel.
To this, the court, said the amount comes to around Rs 300 per day. “What is this? How can the state pay such a less amount to experts? At least pay them as per their knowledge and status. This isn’t a welcome step at all,” Justice Varale said.
              
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Thursday said that youths of Azamgarh had to hide their identities due to narrow-minded divisive forces. The apparent reference was to the “terror tag” attached to the district in the past. Some of the accused involved in the Ahmedabad serial blasts (2008) and Delhi’s Batla House encounter hailed from this area. Adityanath was in Azamgarh for the first time after winning parliamentary bypolls, on the seat left by Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav, to lay foundation stone/inaugurate 50 developmental projects worth about Rs 145 crores.
Markets regulator Sebi on Thursday said it will auction properties of two companies- Sumangal Industries and GSHP Realtech Ltd- on August 25, to recover money that was illegally raised from investors. A total of eight properties of these two firms will be auctioned for a reserve price totalling Rs 9.8 crore, according to a public notice issued by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi). Of the eight properties, six relate to Sumangal Industries and the remaining two belong to GSHP Realtech.
A special court here on Thursday extended till August 8 the Enforcement Directorate (ED) custody of Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut in a money laundering case. While extending the custody, the court noted that the ED has made “remarkable progress” in the investigation. The central agency had arrested Raut on Sunday midnight in connection with alleged financial irregularities in the redevelopment of Patra ‘Chawl’ (old row tenement) in suburban Goregaon and related financial property transactions involving his wife and alleged associates. On Monday, the court had remanded him in the ED custody till August 4.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Thursday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave an all-inclusive and all-reaching government in the last eight years. Shah also took an apparent swipe at the earlier UPA government at the Centre, alleging there was “policy paralysis” then, while a number of scams also happened. “In eight years PM Narendra Modi gave a ‘Sarva Sparshi, Sarva Samaveshi’ government to the country. There isn’t any area where reforms didn’t take place and we have taken an oath for the welfare of the entire society,” he said.
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Indian Players are creating conjectures in Commonwealth Games 2022; simultaneously India is also strengthening its overall sports management. One step ahead on this path of progress, 10th Sports India International Expo 2022 is being held in Greater Noida. This three day Exhibition is starting from 4th -6th August 2022 at India Expo Centre, Greater Noida, UP. The main aim of the event is to make India significant player in the world sports. The main guest of honour for inauguration is Shri Girish Chandra Yadav, Sports and youth affairs Minister, government of Uttar Pradesh. Apart from this Dr Somendra Tomar, Minister of State power and alternative energy, government of Uttar Pradesh, Ms. Ekta Vishnoi, director, Fit India Mission is coming forward to share her thoughts on the same.
Former Haryana Congress leader Kuldeep Bishnoi joined the BJP on Thursday along with his wife Renuka Bishnoi here in the presence of senior party leaders, including state Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar. Bishnoi, son of former chief minister Bhajan Lal, has been an MLA for four terms and MP for two terms while his wife is also an ex-MLA. Khattar welcomed him into the party at a ceremony at the BJP headquarters and said his induction will help the organisation. He noted that Bishnoi has been supporting Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s leadership and backed the BJP during the recent Rajya Sabha polls despite being a Congress MLA. Lauding Modi as a “great prime minister”, Bishnoi said it would not be wrong to describe him as “India’s best prime minister” who always thinks about the country and the poor’s welfare.
The Delhi High Court on Thursday asked the city police to inform it about the steps taken to implement the National Green Tribunal’s (NGT) order banning sale of Chinese synthetic ‘manjha’ used for kite flying. The court was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking a complete ban on flying, sale, purchase, storage, and transportation of kites as many people and birds are killed or injured due to accidents caused by glass coated strings. “What steps Delhi Police has taken to ensure that Chinese ‘manjha’ is not used. What steps have you taken for implementation of NGT order? Take instructions and inform us,” a bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad said.
Hinduja Group flagship Ashok Leyland has unveiled the H6 4V engine in AVTR range equipped with premium N Cabin to serve the tractor and tipper segments, the company said on Thursday. The H series engine makes the new range of trucks suitable for customers who seek higher power delivery and superior fuel efficiency, the city-based heavy commercial vehicle manufacturer said. “…today further strengthened its AVTR portfolio by introducing 250 HP, 6-cylinder 4 Valve Engine with premium N cabin in haulage, tractor and tipper segments,” the company said in a statement. “The modularity of AVTR platform significantly reduces the product lead time, thereby enabling us to launch products which cater to the unique transportation requirements of our customers,” Ashok Leyland, Head-Medium and Heavy Commercial Vehicles, Sanjeev Kumar said.
Chief Justice of India N V Ramana on Thursday set in motion the process of appointment of his successor by recommending the name of Justice Uday Umesh Lalit to the Centre in accordance with convention. The CJI personally handed over a copy of his letter of recommendation to Justice Lalit, next in seniority to Justice Ramana. Justice Ramana, the 48th chief justice of India who took over as head of the Indian judiciary from S A Bobde on April 24, 2021, is scheduled to demit office on August 26 after a tenure of over 16 months. Supreme Court judges retire at the age of 65. “Hon’ble the Chief Justice of India Shri Justice N V Ramana today recommended the name of Hon’ble Shri Justice Uday Umesh Lalit as his successor to the Hon’ble Minister for Law and Justice,” a statement said.
The High Court of Karnataka has rejected the bail plea of IAS officer J Manjunath who is in custody in the Rs 5 lakh bribery case. He was the Bengaluru Urban Deputy Commissioner (DC) when the alleged bribery incident happened in his office. He was arrested on July 4, just days after he was transferred from the post of Bengaluru DC. The arrest came after observations of the High Court in the bail plea of a deputy tahsildar who was already in custody in the same case.
 
Assets worth more than Rs 40 crore have been attached in an alleged bank loan fraud linked money laundering probe against a Bengaluru-based company, the Enforcement Directorate has said. A provisional order has been issued under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) to attach residential apartments, plots, agricultural lands and bank deposits of Kavveri Telecom Infrastructure Limited, the central agency said in a statement issued on Thursday. The total value of the attached properties is Rs 40.14 crore, it said.
Chief Justice of India N V Ramana on Thursday set in motion the process of appointment of his successor by recommending the name of Justice Uday Umesh Lalit, the most senior judge, to the Centre. The CJI personally handed over the copy of his letter of recommendation to Justice Lalit. Justice Ramana, the 48th chief justice of India who took over as head of the Indian judiciary from S A Bobde on April 24, 2021, is scheduled to demit office on August 26 after a tenure of over 16 months. Justice Lalit, who would be appointed head of the judiciary on August 27, will have a tenure of less than three months as the chief justice of India. He retires on November 8 this year. 
Lok Sabha proceedings on Thursday were adjourned till 2 pm amid Opposition protests against the alleged misuse of the Enforcement Directorate by the government. As soon as the House met for the day, Opposition members, including from the Congress, wanted to raise the ED action, price rise and other issues. On Wednesday, the ED temporarily sealed the office of Young Indian (YI) company housed in the premises of Congress-owned newspaper National Herald here as part of an ongoing money laundering investigation. Shouting slogans, Congress members trooped into the Well of the House. Speaker Om Birla requested the members to go back to their seats but they continued with their protests. Five questions and related supplementaries were taken up during the Question Hour, which went on till around 11:30 am. As the din continued, Birla adjourned the proceedings till 2 pm. 
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Former Congress leader Kuldeep Bishnoi is all set to join the BJP at the party headquarters here on Thursday. The 53-year-old Bishnoi, who was expelled by the Congress from all party positions for cross-voting in the June Rajya Sabha polls, resigned from the state Assembly on Wednesday. Bishnoi represented the Adampur seat in Haryana’s Hisar district. Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar is expected to be present at his joining. The four-time MLA and two-time MP had been sulking ever since the Congress had ignored him for the post of its Haryana unit chief during a revamp earlier this year.
The Kerala High Court has directed the state government to give details of its employees who abstained from work as part of the two-day nationwide strike on March 28 and 29, against central policies, and are facing action for the same. The high court has also ordered the LDF government to give the “details of government employees who availed leave, permission whether granted or not or pending and outcome of the same” in a tabular column. The court also made it clear that the statement to be filed by the state government “should also contain the details of the disciplinary action taken, outcome, etc.” and listed the matter for hearing on August 24. The court sought these details after the state government said it has initiated disciplinary action under the Kerala Service Rules against its employees who abstained from work on those two days.
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The Transportation Department is proposing to require airlines to offer passengers a refund if their flight schedule is changed significantly or the airline makes major changes to their itinerary. The proposed rule announced Wednesday would require airlines to give refunds if their departure or arrival time changes by three hours or more for a domestic flight or at least six hours for an international one. Refunds would also be due if the airline changes the passenger’s departure or arrival airport, adds stops in their itinerary, or causes “a significant downgrade” in the travel experience by switching to a different type of plane.
Women self help groups (SHGs) in Chhattisgarh have joined the ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ campaign and are stitching tricolours as part of the drive, with their members saying the initiative has not only generated employment opportunities for them, but also awakened the patriotic spirit among people. The SHGs in all districts of the state have been engaged in making national flags to extend contribution to the campaign, a government statement said here on Wednesday. As part of ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ being observed to mark the 75th year of Independence, Har Ghar Tiranga campaign is being held by the Central government from August 11 to 15, under which the national flags will be hoisted atop houses across the country.
Congress MP Manickam Tagore gives Adjournment Motion Notice in Lok Sabha to discuss the issue of unemployment.
As many as 43 inmates of the district jail tested positive for COVID-19, officials said. The samples of 425 prisoners were taken, out of which 43 have tested positive for Covid, district health officer Khagendra Singh said on Wednesday. They have been kept in isolation in a separate barrack, he said. A camp to test the prisoners for hepatitis and other infections was held inside the jail premises from July 28-29, the officials said.
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Congress MP Rajeev Shukla gives Zero Hour Submission in Rajya Sabha to discuss the admission of medical students who have returned from Ukraine.
Providing buses in remote areas, reducing wait time for buses to five minutes, feeder buses for last mile connectivity- these are some of the steps that will be part of the Delhi government’s bus route rationalisation plan. Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal Wednesday presided over a high-level review meeting to expand bus connectivity to every single corner of Delhi through route rationalisation. Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot was also present in the meeting with senior officials of the departments concerned.
The Christian flag that became the focus of a free speech legal battle that went all the way to the Supreme Court was raised — briefly — outside Boston City Hall to cheers and songs of praise. The flag-raising on Wednesday took place about three months after the Supreme Court in a unanimous decision ruled the city discriminated against Harold Shurtleff and his Camp Constitution group because of his “religious viewpoint” when it refused permission for him to fly the banner on City Hall Plaza on Constitution Day 2017.
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US Senators have delivered near-unanimous bipartisan approval to NATO membership for Finland and Sweden, calling expansion of the Western defensive bloc a “slam-dunk” for US national security and a day of reckoning for Russian President Vladimir Putin over his invasion of Ukraine. Wednesday’s 95-1 vote — for the candidacy of two Western European nations that, until Russia’s war against Ukraine, had long avoided military alliances — took a crucial step toward expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and its 73-year-old pact of mutual defense among the United States and democratic allies in Europe.
A cave-in at a coal mine in northern Mexico trapped nine miners, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said. The president tweeted that the accident happened in the town of Sabinas in the border state of Coahuila. He said 92 soldiers, specialists and four dogs were at the scene assisting rescue efforts. The Coahuila state government said in a statement that the collapse occurred on Wednesday after the miners breached a neighbouring area filled with water. The mine began operations this year, and the local government said it had not received any complaints or reports of previous incidents.
 
Elon Musk’s answer to Twitter’s lawsuit over his attempt to back out of a USD 44 billion deal to buy the social media company will be made public by Friday evening at the latest, a judge has ruled. Attorneys for Musk wanted to file a public version of their answer and counterclaims in Delaware court on Wednesday. But Twitter attorneys complained that they needed more time to review and potentially redact Musk’s sealed filing, saying it refers “extensively” to internal Twitter information and data given to Musk. Chancellor Kathaleen St. Jude McCormick held a quick teleconference on Wednesday before agreeing with Twitter, directing that the public filing be docketed by 5 pm on Friday. It could be filed earlier depending on when Twitter attorneys complete their review. Twitter attorneys argued that court rules require that five business days lapse before a public version of Musk’s filing is docketed.
A junior clerk of the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd (MSEDCL) was arrested by the Anti-Corruption Bureau here on Wednesday for allegedly demanding a bribe of Rs 5,000 from an official of a solar panel installation company, the ACB said. The accused, Nilesh Pundalik Wargade (36), is attached to MSEDCL’s office at Nandanvan in Nagpur district. According to the ACB, the complainant has installed a rooftop solar panel in Nandanvan and had applied to MSEDCL for a metre and other related works. Wargade allegedly demanded Rs 5,000 for sanctioning the metre and completing other formalities, but later settled for Rs 2,000, the anti-graft agency said. The complainant approached the ACB and lodged a complaint.
 
A gunbattle in Afghanistan’s capital of Kabul left at least five people dead Wednesday, including two Taliban police and three Islamic State group gunmen, a Taliban official said. Khalid Zadran, the Taliban spokesman for the Kabul police chief, said police had launched an operation against the gunmen’s hideout, killing at least three in the Karti Sakhi neighborhood in western Kabul. He said the gunmen were Islamic State group fighters. There was no immediate claim of responsibility. One of the police officers killed was a woman, said Zardan. He said four Taliban police were wounded and one gunman was arrested.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday congratulated Indian judoka Tulika Maan for winning a silver medal at the Commonwealth Games and said this medal is yet another accolade in her distinguished sporting career. Maan gave her all but came up short against Scotland’s Sarah Adlington in the final to settle for a silver medal in the women’s 78kg category in the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on Wednesday. Mann, who won two fights earlier in the day to make it to the final, led for the majority of the bout before Adlington pulled off a decisive move, an Ippon, to win gold.
The United Nations chief has said that he is appointing a fact-finding mission in response to requests from Russia and Ukraine to investigate the killings at a prison in a separatist region of eastern Ukraine that the warring nations accuse each other of carrying out. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told reporters he doesn’t have authority to conduct criminal investigations but does have authority to conduct fact-finding missions, and the terms of reference for a mission to Ukraine are currently being prepared and will be sent to the governments of Ukraine and Russia for approval.
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