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Morning digest: Trump announces new green card system, Azad says Congress will not insist on PM post, and more

President Donald Trump speaks on immigration from the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, Thursday, May 16, 2019.

President Donald Trump speaks on immigration from the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, Thursday, May 16, 2019.   | Photo Credit: AP

A select list of stories to read before you start your day.

U.S. President Donald Trump announces new points-based green card system

U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday announced a proposal that will include significant changes to the way green cards are allocated, by dramatically reducing the number of family-based green cards and moving towards a points-based (“merit-based”) system that will reward, among other factors, education, skills and English language proficiency. The plan, which the President outlined at a Rose Garden gathering, with senior administration officials and influential Hill Republicans in attendance, sought to boost border security and tighten asylum procedures.

Congress will not insist on Prime Minister’s post: Azad

The Congress is not averse to offering the post of Prime Minister to the leader of a regional party, amid reports that former Congress chief Sonia Gandhi has reached out to potential allies for a meet on May 23 to discuss government formation in case of a hung verdict.

“My party high command has already made it clear that the Congress is not averse to making a leader from any regional party the Prime Minister,” Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad told reporters at the Congress office in Shimla on Thursday.

Probe to continue in Bofors case, says CBI

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Thursday said its probe in the Bofors case would continue in view of certain revelations made by one Michael Hershman.

In view of Mr. Hershman's “revelations”, the agency had earlier sought the permission of the trial court to conduct further investigation in the Bofors case.

West Bengal IPS officer Rajiv Kumar reports to Home Ministry

Senior West Bengal cadre IPS officer Rajiv Kumar reported to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Thursday as directed by the Election Commission a day ago.

After violence was reported in Kolkata during BJP president Amit Shah’s rally, the EC relieved Mr. Kumar, Additional Director General of Police (CID) from his post with immediate effect and directed him to report to the MHA at 10 a.m. on Thursday.

Two Indian climbers die on Mount Kanchenjunga

Two Indian climbers have died and a Chilean is missing on Mount Kanchenjunga, the world's third-highest mountain, expedition organisers said Thursday.

Biplab Baidya, 48, and Kuntal Karar, 46, were on the 8,586 metres mountain on the Nepal-India border with a five-member team from West Bengal.

Opinion | Is the future of Indian democracy secure?

Over the past few months, while observing the discussions and rhetoric surrounding the parliamentary elections, I have been struck by the disjuncture between the concerns expressed, on the one hand, by the liberal elite who write in the English press and engage in debates on the more serious talk shows and, and on the other, the preoccupation of the majority of Indian voters who will decide the winner of the electoral contest.

This article does not attempt to denigrate the concerns of the latter; it merely seeks to highlight the disconnectedness between elite and mass concerns and bring out its implications for the future of Indian democracy.

Theresa May to set departure timeline after vote on Brexit Bill

British Prime Minister Theresa May will set a timetable for her departure after a crucial vote on Brexit legislation in June, as Conservative MPs temporarily backed away from demands that she set a date for her departure this week and Boris Johnson declared his intention to enter the intra-party contest to replace her.

Her plan will add to the significance of the vote on the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement Bill, whose crucial second reading is set to take place in the week beginning June 3, and through which the Prime Minister hopes to make a final attempt to get her Brexit plans through Parliament.

Coalition planes hit Sana’a after Houthi drone strike

The Saudi-led military coalition in Yemen carried out several air strikes on the Houthi-held capital Sana’a on Thursday after the Iranian-aligned movement claimed responsibility for drone attacks on Saudi oil installations. The Sana’a strikes targeted nine military sites in and around the city, residents said.

Rubble filled a populated street lined by mud-brick houses, a Reuters journalist on the scene said. A crowd of men lifted the body of a women, wrapped in a white shroud, into an ambulance.

Reliance-BP makes first bid for oil block; Vedanta bids for 30

Reliance Industries and its British partner BP Plc have made their first bid for an oil and gas exploration acreage in over eight years by bidding for one of the 32 blocks up for auction in the latest licensing round that saw mining major Vedanta putting in as many as 30 bids while State-owned ONGC bid for 20.

Bidding for 14 blocks on offer in the Open Acreage Licensing Policy (OALP) round-II and another 18 oil and gas blocks and five coal-bed methane (CBM) blocks on offer under OALP-III closed on Wednesday.

Bumrah, ever an action-packed thriller

Jasprit Bumrah has been an action-packed thriller, nonpareil. Right from the time he visualised himself as a fast bowler of some force, tried his hand at it, dismantled well-arranged woodwork behind batsmen ranging from schoolboys, clubs players and others in the very many grounds in Ahmedabad, the strapping speed merchant had evoked compelling attention.

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Printable version | Jun 4, 2020 4:27:17 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/morning-news-digest-may-17-2019/article27157023.ece

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