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Morning Digest | Doval discusses high-tech cooperation in Moscow; Centre cuts windfall tax on domestic crude oil, and more

Here’s a select list of stories to read before you start your day

August 19, 2022 08:04 am | Updated 08:04 am IST

In this combo photo, NSA Ajit Doval with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov during a meeting in Russia on August 18.

In this combo photo, NSA Ajit Doval with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov during a meeting in Russia on August 18. | Photo Credit: PTI

Doval discusses high-tech cooperation, outer space in Moscow

National Security Advisor Ajit Doval met with Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Denis Manturov, who is in charge of Russia’s weapons industry, on Thursday in Moscow. The second day of official engagements saw Mr. Doval exchange ideas on a wide variety of issues, including bilateral trade, technological collaboration, and cultural cooperation.

Customised defence deals offered to offset sanctions impact: Senior Russian military official

Russian exporters of military products, today, are operating in a new reality and payments for defence deals in U.S. dollar and euro have been reduced to a minimum and they are adopting various measures to offset the impact of sanctions including switching to payments in national currencies, according to Dmitry Shugaev, Director of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) of Russia.

“In connection with the current political events, certain logistical problems may arise, which entails changes in the timing of the supply of military products to foreign customers. However, the measures we are taking together with partners, including the Indian side, to find and implement alternative ways of supplying military products will neutralise the barriers erected by Western countries against Russia in the field of military-technical cooperation,” Mr. Shugaev said in response to a question from  The Hindu.

Amit Shah directs police chiefs of border States to keep vigil on demographic changes

Home Minister Amit Shah on August 18 asked the police chiefs of border States to keep strict vigil on demographic changes and radicalisation in border districts. He said the soon-to-be-launched 5G technology should be used to strengthen the security system, and a presentation was made on emerging challenges around the technology.

Judge willing to release part of affidavit in raid on Donald Trump’s home

A federal judge on August 18 ordered the Justice Department to put forward proposed redactions as he committed to making public at least part of the affidavit supporting the search warrant for former President Donald Trump’s estate in Florida.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart gave prosecutors a week to submit a copy of the affidavit with proposed redactions for the information it wants to keep secret after the FBI seized classified and top secret information during a search at Mr. Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate last week.

Centre hikes windfall tax on diesel, ATF exports; cuts tax on domestic crude oil

The government has revived the windfall tax on Aviation Turbine Fuel (ATF) exports at ₹2 per litre, raised the export tax on diesel from ₹5 a litre to ₹7, and slashed the central excise levy on domestically produced crude oil to ₹13,000 per tonne as opposed to ₹17,750 levied a fortnight ago.

India-China ties going through extremely difficult phase: Jaishankar

External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar said on Thursday that the relationship between India and China was going through an “extremely difficult phase” after what Beijing had done at the border and emphasised that the Asian Century would not happen if the two neighbours could not join hands.

He made the remarks while responding to a series of questions after delivering a lecture on ‘India’s Vision of the Indo-Pacific’ at the prestigious Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok.

Congress postpones its mega anti-price rally to September 4

The Congress on Thursday announced its decision to reschedule its mega rally against price rise from August 28 to September 4 in view of the growing number of COVID-19 cases in the national capital.

Former party chief Rahul Gandhi will address the Mehangai Par Halla Bol rally in Delhi and would be present at the Kanyakumari-to-Kashmir Bharat Jodo Yatra three days later, on September 7. The  padayatra will cover 3,500 km across 12 States and two Unions Territories.

Congress accuses BJP of ‘delaying’ Naga peace agreement over election plans 

The 2015 Naga Peace Framework announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is a “farce” and the BJP is delaying a solution to the Naga issue because the party takes help of militant groups to win elections, the Congress alleged on Thursday.

Gyanvapi case | Court imposes ₹500 cost on masjid panel

In the ongoing Gyanvapi masjid-Kashi Vishwanath temple civil dispute, a district court in Varanasi on August 18 imposed a cost of ₹500 on the Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee after lawyers representing the panel sought multiple adjournments on account of the lead lawyer Abhay Nath Yadav sudden death on July 31.

COVID-19 virus still around, warns NITI Aayog member Dr. V.K. Paul

Stating that the COVID virus is still around, Dr. V.K. Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog on Thursday said that “we can’t predict changes in the number of cases so we need to stay alert and get vaccination cover”.

The warning comes close on the heels of World Health Organisation’s alert stating that the world should not lower its guard against the virus just yet.

Zimbabwe vs India, 1st ODI | Deepak Chahar shines on return as India wins by 10 wickets

Pacer Deepak Chahar made an impressive comeback to international cricket with an incisive spell and India’s openers maintained their consistency as India outclassed Zimbabwe by 10 wickets in the opening One Day International, here on Thursday.

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