Morning Digest | India-Israel signed deal for Pegasus spyware purchase in 2017; BSF, Pakistan Rangers revive talk, and more

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Updated - January 30, 2022 08:17 am IST

Published - January 30, 2022 08:16 am IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu. File

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu. File

Modi-Netanyahu signed deal for Pegasus spyware purchase in 2017, amended U.N. vote: New York Times

A new political storm erupted over an investigation by the New York Times that said the Indian government had purchased Israeli NSO group’s Pegasus software in July 2017 in order to carry out targeted surveillance on citizens, claiming that high-level visits by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and former Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and even a U.N. vote on a Palestinian organisation was part of a larger backroom deal.

Supreme Court panel monitoring Pegasus matter; report awaited, says govt.

A government source on Saturday said that the matter related to Pegasus software is being monitored by a committee under the Supreme Court and its report is awaited.

The source said that the inquiry committee — set up under the supervision of retired Supreme Court judge R. V. Raveendran — has also published a newspaper advertisement on January 2 calling for submission of phones by people who claim their devices were infected by Pegasus.

BSF, Pakistan Rangers revive talk

After three years, the border guarding forces of India and Pakistan have revived sector commander level talks. The Border Security Force (BSF) and the its counterpart-the Pakistan Rangers have held two meetings in the past six months. the recent one was held on January 5.

COVID-19 | We still need to be vigilant, says Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya

Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Saturday said that though active COVID-19 cases and positivity rate had fallen in most of the States in the last two weeks, “we still need to be vigilant and not lower our guard.’’

LS Speaker Om Birla refers disqualification petitions to privilege committee

Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla has referred petitions submitted by the Trinamool Congress and the YSR Congress under the anti-defection law against Sisir Adhikari and K Raghu Rama Krishna Raju respectively to the Privileges Committee.

Policeman shot dead by militants in J&K

A policeman was shot dead by militants in south Kashmir and three members of The Resistance Front (TRF) were arrested in central Kashmir on Saturday. A police spokesperson said Head Constable Ali Mohammad Ganie was shot at by the terrorists near his residential house at Hasanpora Tabala area of Bijbehara, Anantnag around 5:30 p.m.

NGT asks 100 industrial units in Maharashtra to pay ₹186 crore compensation for water pollution; raps ED, MPCB

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has ordered around 100 industrial units in Tarapur MIDC area of Maharashtra’s Palghar district to collectively pay around ₹186 crore as environmental compensation for polluting water bodies in the region by releasing untreated effluents into them.

First-ever goods train reaches Rani Gaidinlu station in Manipur

The hilly border State of Manipur has finally found a place in the country’s railway map. On January 6, a passenger train came from Silchar in Assam to the Vangaichungpao railway station in Manipur. It is situated 17 km from the Jiribam railway station along the Assam-Manipur border. On January 27, a goods train came up to the Rani Gaidinlu station.

Biden to send troops to Europe amid Ukraine diplomacy push

U.S. President Joe Biden is maintaining pressure on Russian leader Vladimir Putin over Ukraine after announcing a small troop deployment to eastern Europe even as top Pentagon officials backed a renewed push for diplomacy.

Two years on, Indian students awaiting their return to China still in limbo

Two years on after thousands of Indian medical students saw their education in China abruptly put on hold amid the COVID-19 outbreak, students are still in the dark about when they can return and are growing increasingly desperate about their future.

Watch | Why is Indonesia shifting its capital?

On January 18, Indonesia’s Parliament approved a bill to relocate the country’s capital. Indonesia will move its capital from Jakarta to a new city to be built on the island of Borneo.

Tata Steel chess | Vidit Gujrathi holds Magnus Carlsen

Vidit Gujrathi proved equal to World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen in 51 moves to share the fifth spot after 11 rounds of the Masters section in the Tata Steel chess tournament at Wijk aan Zee, near Amsterdam, on Friday.

Australian Open 2022 | Ashleigh Barty lifts title; first Australian to win home Grand Slam

An imperious Ashleigh Barty became the first Australian to win her home Grand Slam in 44 years Saturday, halting the charge of fearless American Danielle Collins in straight sets.

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