Morning Digest: Mullah Akhund to head interim Taliban government; RSS-wing demands guaranteed prices for crops, and more

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid addresses a press conference in Kabul on September 7, 2021. The Taliban announced UN-sanctioned Taliban veteran Mullah Mohammad Hassan Akhund as the leader of their new government.   | Photo Credit: AFP

Mullah Akhund to head interim Taliban government

The Taliban on Tuesday announced a caretaker Cabinet that paid homage to the old guard of the group, giving top posts to Taliban personalities who dominated the 20-year battle against the US-led coalition and its Afghan government allies.

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RSS-wing demands guaranteed prices for crops

The current minimum support price (MSP) system is a sham which benefits farmers only in the two States of Punjab and Haryana, said Bharatiya Kisan Sangh general secretary Badrinarayan Chaudhary on Tuesday. The RSS-affiliated farmers union announced that it will hold a symbolic dharna in 500 district headquarter towns on Wednesday, to demand that a law be enacted to guarantee remunerative prices to all farmers, with such prices set according to different agro-climatic zones.

Indian agencies track huge heroin seizure off Sri Lanka

The Indian anti-drug law enforcement agencies are gathering details about the seizure of more than 600 kg of heroin and the arrest of seven Pakistani nationals by their Sri Lankan counterparts in the high seas during the past few days. A foreign vessel used for drug trafficking was also impounded.

COVID-19 has ‘devastating’ impact on fight against HIV, TB, malaria: Global Fund

The COVID-19 pandemic had a “devastating” impact on the fight against HIV, tuberculosis and malaria in 2020, according to a report released by the Global Fund on Wednesday.

Air quality ‘improved’ in 104 cities in 2020, says Environment Minister

Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav said on Tuesday the number of cities with “improved air quality” had increased to 104 in 2020 from 86 in 2018 and attributed this to policies of the government. He was speaking at a public function to mark the International Day of Clean Air For Blue Skies.

More delays on Data Protection Bill as panel reopens debate

The Joint Parliamentary Committee on the contentious Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019 has called a meeting on September 15 and 16 to finalise its long-pending report. The panel finalised the draft report last year but it wasn’t circulated to any of the members. The agenda papers circulated ahead of the latest meeting brings the panel back to square one- instead of the finalised report, it reopens the consultations.

India Ratings maintains stable outlook on banking sector in FY22

Domestic rating agency India Ratings on Tuesday maintained a stable outlook on the banking sector for 2021-22 while it expects an increase in stressed assets in retail and MSME segments by end-March. It estimates gross non-performing assets (GNPA) of the banking sector to be at 8.6% and stressed assets at 10.3% for fiscal 2021-22.

Afghan developments: CIA chief, Russian security head in Delhi

India is in “close contact” with both Moscow and Washington over developments in Afghanistan, official sources said, with two high-level intelligence delegations to Delhi this week.

Suresh Prabhu out, Piyush Goyal in as India's G20 Sherpa

The government has appointed Union Minister for Commerce & Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, and Textiles, Piyush Goyal as India’s Sherpa for the G20, replacing former Union Minister Suresh Prabhu in the role.

Supreme Court grants ad interim bail to nearly 100 convicts

The Supreme Court has in a single stroke granted ad interim bail to nearly 100 convicts who have served more than 20 years in jail. The convicts are all lodged in jails in Uttar Pradesh. Most of them are serving their sentences in the Agra Central Jail.

India laid bare England's deficiencies: Michael Vaughan

Battle-hardened India exposed shortcomings of England in all departments with their famous win in the fourth Test, reckons former skipper Michael Vaughan. India were on the backfoot initially but conjured up a comprehensive 157-run win at the Oval on Monday to take a 2-1 lead in the five-match series.

Tourism during pandemic: ‘What better than Kashmir if you can’t go to Europe?’

The prolonged COVID-19 pandemic may have spelt doom for the tourism and hospitality sector at large, but not in Kashmir. The valley has emerged as the most sought after destination in 2021 for premium domestic tourists otherwise accustomed to jaunts abroad, resulting in a major bump in business for luxury hotels and golf courses. A similar trend is emerging in Meghalaya, the second northeastern State after Sikkim to open for tourists, where high-end hotels are doing better than low-end and budget properties.

How the new dowry prohibition system in Kerala is proving a lifeline for many married women

From newly-weds to elderly women above 60, a number of married women in distress are reaching out to the dowry prohibition officers appointed in all districts following the death of Vismaya. While the officers across the State have been receiving a volley of calls in the last one-and-a-half months, around 26 cases were officially filed in which proceedings were initiated.

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Printable version | Oct 22, 2021 8:04:11 AM |

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