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Last Updated : Feb 21 2020 6:57PM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
Around 300 rural clusters developed under Shyama Prasad Mukherji National Rurban Mission            Prez Trump says he likes PM Modi & two leaders to hold talks on broad gamut of relations during his upcoming visit            Centre reiterates convicts in Rajiv Gandhi assassination case cannot be released without its approval            FATF to take a final call on whether to keep Pakistan in its Grey list at its meeting in Paris            India beat Australia by 17 runs in ICC Women's T-20 World Cup opener           

Text Bulletins Details

Midday News

1400 HRS


  • Electioneering enters last phase for Haryana and Maharashtra assembly elections; senior party leaders holding rallies across the states.

  • Special mobilization drive to take place in Jammu and Kashmir, for enrolment under Pradhan Mantri Laghu Vyapari Maan Dhan Yojana.

  • Supreme Court  directs  to transfer Assam National Register of Citizens  Coordinator Prateek Hajela to Madhya Pradesh for the maximum period.

  • Us President Donald Trump says economic sanctions on Turkey no longer necessary after  five-day cease fire in Syria.

  • Final league stage match of the Sultan Johar Cup Junior Hockey tournament  between India and Britain underway in Malaysia.


Campaigning for assembly elections in Maharashtra and Haryana  has entered the last phase as only two days are left to woo the voters.  Prominent leaders across all the political parties are busy campaigning across the states.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said the Congress culture of kharchi and parchi has been rooted out of Haryana. Addressing a public rally in Guhana today, Prime Minister said the BJP government focused on merit, and eliminated nepotism in the state. . Referring to abrogation of Article 370 he said the Constitution of India was implemented in Jammu and Kashmir on Aug 5. He said Congress has the problem with every thing we do whether it is abrogation of Article 370, the Surgical strike or the Swachha Bharat Mission. He is scheduled to address another rally in Hisar later today.  Rajnath Singh addressed rally at Jhajhar while Chief Minister Manohar Lal, General V. K. Singh, Hema Malini and Manoj Tiwari are also scheduled to campaign for the party. Senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi will address a Public meeting in Mahendragarh  today. Other Congress leaders Ashok Gehlot, Bhupendra hudda, Sachin Pilot and  Anand Sharma are also taking part in party campaign. Leaders of the INLD, the Jannayak Janta Pary and BSP are also addressing public meeting at various places.

Former Haryana MLA Kartar Singh Bhadana today joined the Bharatiya Janata Party. Bhadana was inducted in the BJP in the presence of party General Secretary Arun Singh in New Delhi.

On the last leg of his campaign in Maharashtra, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold a rally  in Mumbai today. BJP president Amit Shah is holding rallies in Gadchiroli, Chandrapur, Yavatmal and Jalna districts . Chief Minister  Devendra Fadnavis, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari and prominent BJP leaders are also addressing rallies in different parts of state today. Congress leaders Jyotiraditya Scindia, Mallikarjun Kharge and Anand Sharma are also scheduled to hold rallies in the state.

Meanwhile, in Vidarbha region, many innovative ways are being used to increase voter percentage. Along with rallies, street plays and student competitions the district administration is reaching to the business community to offer some discounts to those who voted. Here's a report from our correspondent:

"Among the popular social networking sites Facebook and Twitter are increasingly used to people about rallies and other campaigning events.  Major political parties are doing live telecast of election rallies on their twitter handle and Facebook pages. Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis  has a 3.8 million followers on Twitter, Congress is using the strategy of putting apt videos of 1 or two minutes countering claims of ruling party.  IT cells of main political parties are busy in virtual war on these sites.<>Gauri Marathe, AIR News,Nagpur."  

Campaigning  for Maharashtra and Haryana assemblies  along with bypolls to 51 Assembly seats in 17 states will end tomorrow evening. The polling will be on 21st October and the counting will take place on 24th of this month.


In Maharashtra, with barely three days to go for the polls for 288 member legislative assembly,  preparations are in full swing to ensure free and fair elections in the state. In an exclusive interview to AIR news in Mumbai, the Chief Electoral officer of the state, Baldev Harpal Singh outlined the measure to ensure free and fair elections arrangements for the upcoming polls. 

We  are trying to make a fair playing field for all the candidates and all the political parties. So any kind of illegal gratification or illegal use of money or unauthorised influence on the voter is dealt with very strictly . So we have almost seized more than 83 crores of cash or in Gold or in case of illicit liquor or total value comes around 83 crores of rupees. But machinery is very strict and very vigil and they are working round the clock to see no code of conduct violation happens.

Meanwhile, the District Collector of Mumbai has declared a public holiday on polling day i.e. October 21st. All public and private offices will remain closed so that people are able to cast their vote.

In Haryana also, the Election Department is promptly disposing off complaints of violations of the Model Code of Conduct. Talking to AIR News Chandigarh  the Chief Electoral officer of the state Rajeev Ranjan said special arrangements have been made for the divyangs at the polling stations. 


The Election Commission, EC has sent a notice to the Mumbai BJP Chief Mangal Prabhat Lodha for his alleged communally controversial statement against a particular community and also for flouting the Model Code of Conduct. While addressing a campaign rally for Shiv Sena candidate Pandurang Sakpal from Mumbadevi in central Mumbai, on Wednesday.   


A special mobilization drive shall be undertaken by the government for enrolment of eligible traders, shopkeepers and self-employed persons under Pradhan Mantri Laghu Vyapari Maan Dhan Yojana (PM-LVMY) in the state. The Yojana will be implemented by Life Insurance Corporation of India Limited through its wide network of branch offices and agents. Around 3.5 lakh Common Service Centres will be responsible for the enrolment of the beneficiaries under the scheme.

The PM-LVMY is a voluntary contributory pension scheme for retail traders in the age-group of 18-40 years with  an annual turnover not exceeding 1.5 crore rupees.

Meanwhile, DGP Dilbagh Singh has said that Pakistan sponsored terrorists were involved in the killing of three civilians in Kashmir in over the last few days. He said all field commanders of Police, Army and Paramiltary forces have been directed for working out extra security measures in consultation with the local fruit traders. He was chairing a meeting of Police and security force officers in South Kashmir’s Shopian District.


The Supreme Court has directed the Centre and the state government to transfer Assam National Register of Citizens (NRC) Coordinator Prateek Hajela to Madhya Pradesh for the maximum period.

The direction comes apparently on account of threat perceptions to Hajela.

A special bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and justices S A Bobde and R F Nariman ordered inter-cadre transfer of Hajela on deputation.

Hajela had overseen the mammoth exercise of finalisation and publication of Assam NRC which was released on 31st August this year.


The Supreme court has refused to entertain a plea filed on behalf of scam-hit PMC Bank account holders seeking lifting of restrictions imposed by the Reserve Bank of India on cash withdrawals. Petitioner can approach the high courts concerned for appropriate relief.


Turkey has agreed to a ceasefire in northern Syria to let Kurdish-led forces withdraw. The deal came after US Vice-President Mike Pence and Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met for talks in Ankara yesterday.

Mr Pence said, as per the deal all fighting will be paused for five days, and the US will help facilitate the withdrawal of Kurdish-led troops from what Turkey terms a safe zone on the border.

According to Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, clashes in Ras al-Ain continued despite news of the agreement. Since Turkey launched its invasion of northeastern Syria on October 9th, the dozens of civilians have been killed and 3 lakh have been displaced.


India is facing Great Britain today in their final round robin league match of the Sultan Johor Cup Junior Hockey Tournament in Malaysia.

In their last match on Wednesday, India thrashed Australia 5-1 to qualify for the final of the tournament.


In Business News,

Equity benchmarks today logged gains for sixth sessions in row in afternoon trade. Domestic indices climbed more than half a per cent even as global cues were negative.

BSE Sensex gained 256 points  to trade at 39,308 a short while ago. The NSE Nifty was also up 77 points at 11,664.

The rupee, at forex market, also appreciated by six paise to 71 rupees and 11 paise against the US dollar in afternoon deals.


Fifteen films representing 20 Countries will compete for the Golden Peacock Award at the 50th International Film Festival of India (IFFI) at Panaji in Goa this year. This will be the golden Jublee edition of the festival. The selection of the films has been made from over 700 entries.

Information and Broadcasting Ministry said in a release that Mr. John Bailey, Cinematographer and Ex. President of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences will chair the International Jury of the 50th International Film Festival of India.



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