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Last Updated : Sep 21 2020 8:13AM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
PM Modi to lay foundation stone for nine highway projects worth over Rs 14,000 Cr in Bihar through video conference today            Govt says Minimum Support Price for farmers will continue            Railways starts running 40 clone trains with higher speed and fewer stops            Many states to partially reopen schools for students of classes 9-12 from today as per Unlock 4 guidelines            Sikkim govt imposes complete lockdown in Gangtok municipal area till Sept 27           

Text Bulletins Details

Evening News

2030 HRS
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi holds telephonic conversation with Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani; Reiterates India's commitment for a peaceful, prosperous and inclusive Afghanistan.

  • India crosses a milestone, conducts more than 2 crore COVID tests so far; Fatality Rate declines to 2.11 per cent.

  • In Bihar, relief and rescue operations in full swing in flood affected 14 districts.

  • Raksha Bandhan being celebrated across the country.

  • And IPL Cricket - 2020 to begin from 19th of September in United Arab Emirates.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi has reiterated India's commitment to the people of Afghanistan in their quest for a peaceful, prosperous and inclusive Afghanistan. Mr Modi today had a telephonic conversation with President of Afghanistan Dr Ashraf Ghani. Both leaders exchanged greetings on the joyous festival of Eid- ul -Adha. Mr Ghani thanked Mr Modi for timely supply of food and medical assistance to meet the Afghan requirement. The two leaders also exchanged views on the evolving security situation in the region and other areas of mutual bilateral interest.


Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry today said, a total of 11 lakh 86 thousand 203 people have recovered from Corona virus infection in the country so far. In the past 24 hours, 40 thousand 574 recoveries were reported across the country. The Health Ministry said, a total of 52 thousand 972 new cases of COVID-19 were reported in the country in one day taking the total number of cases to 18 lakh three thousand 695. Presently, the total number of active cases in the country is five lakh 79 thousand 357. In a single day, 771 deaths were reported taking the nationwide toll to 38 thousand 135.


In a landmark achievement, India has tested over 2 crore COVID-19 samples so far. The remarkable feat has been achieved by the State and Union Territory governments under the guidance of Centre for management of COVID-19. Testing aggressively, tracking efficiently and isolating and treating promptly are rigourously followed by States and Union Territories in terms of the guidance given by the Health Ministry. Effective implementation of this approach has led to ramping up the testing capacity across the country and facilitated widespread COVID testing of people. With 3 lakh 81 thousand 27 samples being tested in the last 24 hours, the number of Tests Per Million in the country has increased to 14 thousand 640. COVID testing in the country has demonstrated a steady upward trend indicating the growing testing network. In another positive development, 24 States and Union Territories have reported higher testing per million than the national average. The testing lab network in the country is continuously strengthened with 1 thousand 348 labs in the country, out of which 914 labs are in the government sector whereas 434 are private labs.


The Drugs Controller General of India has given approval to Serum Institute of India, Pune to conduct Phase IIIII clinical trials of Oxford University-Astra Zeneca COVID-19 vaccine (COVISHIELD) in India. This will hasten the development of the COVID-19 vaccine. The Union Health Ministry said, India continues to improve the Case Fatality Rate (CFR), and maintain its global position of having one of the lowest COVID fatalities rates. With a further fall, the current CFR touched 2.11 per cent today. The management strategy of COVID-19 also focuses on early detection and isolation of cases with seamless patient management and prioritising care of the high-risk population, leading to increase in recoveries across the country. The Ministry said, India has seen more than 40 thousand 574 patients recovered in the last 24 hours. This takes the total recoveries to 11 lakh 86 thousand 203 and recovery rate to 65.77 per cent amongst COVID-19 patients. With improving daily recovery number, the gap between the recovered cases and the active cases has increased to more than 6 lakh. The actual active case load is over five lakh 79 thousand and all are under medical supervision.


Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala and his staff were tested negative for Coronavirus today. The Corona Ag test was conducted on the Governor and his staff after Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa tested positive yesterday. The Chief Minister had met the Governor on July 31st. After being admitted to hospital, the Chief Minister issued a message to the public. He said that doctors have assured him of early recovery. The health bulletin issued by the hospital says that the Chief Minister is doing well and is clinically stable. The Deputy Chief Minister Dr. C N Ashwathnarayan also underwent a rapid antigen test today and was found negative. More from our Correspondent:

"Medical Education minister Dr. K Sudhakar has tweeted that recovery rate in the state has improved in the last one week. In Bengaluru, he added, the recovery rate has improved by 9.17 percent. Karnataka recovery rate was 42.81 percent and in Bengaluru it was 35.14 percent. The state has reported 4752 new Covid cases and 98 deaths related to the virus today. There was a record 4776 discharges today after recovery. The state conducted 27,989 tests today. Bengaluru urban again reported the highest of 1497 active cases today and 27 deaths. Sudhindra AIR News Bengaluru"


After many days Kerala reported less than 1000 covid 19 cases in a day as the State confirmed  962 new cases today. A report:-

"Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan informed that among the new cases, 801 persons  contracted the virus through local transmission. Thiruvananthapuram  continue to be worst hit as  205 new covid cases were confirmed today. The death toll in State due to Covid touched 84.As the Covid cases are on a rise, Chief Minister informed that the surveillance will be tightened across the State.The  containment zones guidelines are also revised with more stringent restrictions in place.Meanwhile, 815 persons recovered from the disease today.The total active Covid cases in Kerala rose to 11484. Mayusha for AIR News from Thiruvananthapuram."


In Tamil Nadu, the total Covid-19 cases have zoomed past the figure of two lakh sixty three thousand with 5609 people confirmed positive today. Meanwhile, the Madras IIT and a start-up incubated in it have jointly developed an effective remote patient monitoring system. It can monitor the Covid-19 patient’s body temperature, blood saturation level, respiratory rate and heart rate. More from our correspondent:

"For a Covid-19 patient, the most crucial parameters are the body temperature, blood saturation level, respiratory rate and heart rate. The device developed by the Madras IIT reads all at the same time. It is portable, wireless and can be clipped on to the patient’s finger. The data from it is streamed to a mobile phone or a central monitoring system that can be accessed by the doctor, says the head of the Madras IIT Healthcare Innovation Centre Professor Mohanasankar Sivaprakasam.

(Audio Byte: Prof. Mohanasankar Sivaprakasam)

Whenever the patient’s critical readings drop down, the device immediately escalates alarm for the doctor to respond immediately. Jayasingh, AIR News, Chennai."


The Maharashtra government today told the Bombay High Court that it does not intend to permit street vendors and hawkers to conduct their businesses amid the COVID-19 pandemic as it is not possible to regulate them. The government filed an affidavit in response to a public interest litigation raising concerns of street vendors being without income due to the COVID-19 lockdown. The affidavit filed by the government said street vendors and hawkers fall in  unorganised sector which make it very difficult to regulate their business. It said the civic body and police authorities are already over-burdened with COVID-19 related duties and hence, it would not be possible to expect them to regulate street vendors and hawkers. The court last month asked the government to clarify its position on the issue, and said the government could consider framing a policy.


Nagaland’s COVID-19 tally surpassed 2000 mark today as 194 new cases have been reported. This is the highest single day spike in the number of COVID-19 cases so far in the state. Health and Family Welfare Minister S. Pangnyu Phom tweeted this afternoon that out of 845 samples tested, 136 are detected from Dimapur, 36 from Zunheboto and 22 from Kohima. The total confirmed positive cases in the state now stand at 2,129, out of which 1473 are active while 648 have recovered. So far, four people have succumbed to COVID-19. 


In Tripura, three more persons lost their lives due to Covid-19 yesterday at Agartala Government Medical College taking the state's death toll to 27.

Meanwhile, with the detection of 141 fresh positive cases, the total number of positive cases in the state has risen to 5,387 with 1,739 active cases.

So far a total of 3,605 Covid- patients have recovered.


Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren Singh inaugurated a new 300 bedded COVID Care Centre (CCC) at Manipur Trade and Expo Centre in Imphal West today. During the inaugural ceremony, the Chief Minister said that there is evidence of local transmission of COVID-19, however there is no community transmission of the disease in Manipur. The awareness among the people is very much needed to contain further spread of the diseases and he appealed to the people to come out openly for early treatment instead of concealing their COVID-19 status if tested positive. Meanwhile, in the past twenty four hours, 89 people including 5 from Central Armed Police Force were confirmed as new COVID-19 positive in Manipur while 29 persons were discharged from hospitals after recovery. The total number of affected people in the state is 2920. The number of active cases is 1147 while the recovered cases is 1766.


In Assam, the recovered personnel of defence forces have expressed their willingness to donate plasma for COVID patients. Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma held a meeting in Guwahati today with the senior officials of the security forces. In a tweet , the Minister said that the Army and Central Armed Police Forces would join in the movement to donate plasma. So far 115 patients were administered plasma therapy in the state.


In our series "Expert Speak" on All India Radio, we bring you the views of the leading medical experts on COVID-19.

Talking to AIR News, Dr. Nand Kumar, Professor of Psychiatry, AIIMS advised people to stay at home, spend time with family members and practice Yoga. 

Dr. Sanjay Pandey of Govind Ballabh Pant Hospital, Delhi spoke about the use of mask saying it is important to wear them while stepping out of home.


In Bihar, the flood situation continues to be grim. Flood water is spreading in low-lying areas following rise in water level of Gandak, Burhi Gandak, Bagamati and Adhwara group of rivers. In Muzaffarpur, an embankment of Tirhut canal breached in Mohammadpur Kothi Panchayat area inundating several adjoining villages of the district. Similarly, a ring bund was breached at Birne village under Kewati block of Darbhanga district.

 Relief and rescue operations are in full swing as over 55 lakh people spread over 14 districts are reeling under the impact of devastating floods. The situation is worst in Darbhanga district where about 17 lakh people have been affected. Other affected districts are Muzaffarpur, Samastipur, Sitamarhi and East Champaran. Villages spread over 1,059 Panchayats have been cut off from district headquarters. Met Department warns moderate to heavy rain across in northern parts of the state in the next 24 hours.


Defence Ministry has formulated a draft Defence Production and Export Promotion Policy 2020 (DPEPP-2020). The policy aims to provide impetus to self-reliance in defence manufacturing under the Atmanirbhar Bharat Scheme. The DPEPP-2020 is envisaged as overarching guiding document of Defence Ministry to provide a focused, structured and significant thrust to defence production capabilities of the country for self-reliance and exports. A report:

"Defence Production and Export Promotion Policy 2020 has marked out clear goals and objectives to be undertaken by the Defence Ministry. First and foremost amongst all is to achieve a turnover of 1 lakh 75 thousand  Crore rupees including an export of 35 thousand Crore rupees in the Aerospace and Defence goods and services by the year 2025. Developing a dynamic, robust and competitive Defence industry, including Aerospace and Naval Shipbuilding industry to cater to the needs of Armed forces with quality products has also been clearly laid out in the new draft policy. The ministry has also laid emphasis on reducing dependence on imports and taking forward the Make in India initiatives through domestic designs. Efforts will be made to create an environment that encourages Research and Development, rewards innovation, creates Indian IP ownership and promotes a robust and self-reliant defence industry. Anand Chaturvedi, AIR News, Delhi."

Defence Ministry has solicited comments on the draft DPEPP-2020 policy from all stakeholders latest by 17th of August this year.


The Government has clarified that any FDI in the commercial coal mining should also comply with the recent amendments made in the applicable laws. Recently, the government modified its FDI policy according to which any entity of a country, which shares land border with India or where the beneficial owner of an investment into India is situated in or is a citizen of any such country, could invest only under the Government route.

The new policy further states that a citizen of Pakistan or an entity incorporated in Pakistan can invest, only under the Government route, in sectors and activities other than defence, space and atomic energy. Even for the sectors which are prohibited for foreign investment, Government route has been made mandatory for all such entities. Government had earlier permitted 100 per cent FDI under automatic route in coal mining activities, including associated processing infrastructure for sale of coal.


Raksha Bandhan, the festival of special bond between brothers and sisters, is being celebrated today across the country. On this occasion, sisters tie colorful rakhi around the wrist of their brothers and pray for their prosperity, health and well-being. In return, brothers pledge to protect and support their sisters and present them gifts.

President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have greeted the people on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan. In his message, Mr Kovind said, this is a unique festival that strengthens the will to protect the interests of women and work for their well-being.

President Kovind today celebrated Raskha Bandhan with members of the nursing community at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. During a brief interactive session, the nurses offered rakhis to the President and also narrated their experience in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. The President felicitated them and described them as saviours who are not only saving lives but also risking their own lives in the line of duty. Mr Kovind said, such commitment to duty earns respect for nurses who have been performing the role of front-line Covid warriors. The President thanked the entire nursing fraternity for their sincere dedication and services to fellow citizens during the pandemic.

In his message, Vice Presindent Venkaiah Naidu said, on this auspicious occasion, let us also resolve to uphold the dignity and respect traditionally accorded to women in the society and empower them to reach their true potential.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi thanked Mata Amritanandamayi and Lata Mangeshkar for their Raksha Bandhan greetings to him. In a tweet, he said, blessings from India’s Nari Shakti gives him great strength. Mr. Modi said, with the blessings of crores of mothers and sisters, India will touch new heights and achieve new successes.

Rakhis made by Indian companies and Self Help Groups have completely replaced Chinese product this year. Shopkeepers and people have totally rejected Chinese Rakhis this year following Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for Atmanirbhar Bharat and going Vocal for Local. 


Gripping under the novel Corona Virus threat, Mumbai and various parts of Maharashtra celebrated Rakshabandhan today in a constrained way. The fisherman community living in the coastal parts of the state observe the day as Narli Poornima with hundreds of people usually thronging to beaches offering coconut to the sea. This year the festivities were dampened following a ban on congregation of people around the beaches to avoid any contamination of the disease. More from our correspondent:-

"Every year, hundreds of people from the fishermen community in the Konkan region gather around beaches on the occasion of Narli Poornima to offer auspicious fruit coconut to the sea God. The occasion is significant for the fishermen community as this marks the beginning of fishing and water trade among the community. This year, on the backdrop of the Corona epidemic, the administration had appealed to the people to avoid gathering in numbers which has left very few people visiting the beaches. In Palghar district, people chose to celebrate the occasion at home only in a simple manner. Devapriyo Bhattacharjee, AIR News, Mumbai"


In the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the holy Chhari Mubarak of Lord Shiva was taken to the Cave Shrine of Amarnathji in Kashmir today and with this Annual Amarnathji pilgrimage concluded. The annual pilgrimage to the Amarnathji Shrine had been cancelled for this year following the outbreak of coronavirus pandemic and upsurge of the cases in Kashmir. However,the Shrine Board in order to keep the religious sentiments alive had  arranged  Live Telecast/Virtual Darshan of the morning and evening Aarti's from the holy cave shrine.The traditional rituals, however, continued as per the past practice. More from our Srinagar Correspondent:

"On the auspicious occasion of ‘Shravan-Purnima’ today, Chhari-Mubarak of  Amarnath Ji Lord Shiva and Shakti Goddess Parvati Ji led by Mahant Deependra Giri was carried to Holy Shrine of Shri Amarnath ji today from Dashnami Akhara in Srinagar in a chopper sevices. The Traditional rituals and Puja were however, performed by chanting Vedic Hymns and singing of Shiv bhajans at the Holy cave Shrine. Only a Selected number of Sadhus accompanied the Holy Mace due to the prevailing Covid-19 pandemic this year whileas the yatra for the general public had been cancelled by Shri Amarnath ji Shrine Board keeping the alarming surge in the number of civid cases in Kashmir division. The Annual Amarnathji pilgrimage for this year has subsequently came to an end today. This is Sunil Koul for AIR News from Srinagar"


The 3 day long special rituals preceding 'bhoomi pujan' started in Ayodhya today with 'Gauri Ganesh' puja. The special pooja is being performed by priests of Kashi and Ayodhya. The three-day rituals will culminate with the 'bhoomi pujan' that will be performed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday.

With the start of this pooja, bhajan, kirtan and recitation of Ramcharitmanas also started in different temple and houses of Shishya. Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has appealed to the people to celebrate Deepotsava tomorrow and day after tomorrow. More from our correspondent...

"General Secretary of Shri Ram Janm Bhumi Teerth Shetra Trust Champat Rai today said that during bhumi poojan ceremony. Five people will be on the stage - PM Modi, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat, Uttar Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Mahant Nritya Gopaldas who is President of Trust. He said that no mobile phones will be allowed at the venue of Bhoomi Pujan. Each invitee has been provided with invitation card that bears a code. This code will ensure that one invitee gets entry only once. Champat Rai said that 136 saints have been invited for Bhoomi Pujan ceremony. The list includes Mahant of Janaki Mandir in Nepal and Former litigant in Ayodhya land dispute case Iqbal Ansari and Padma Shri Mohammed Sharif. SUSHIL CHANDRA TIWARI, AIR NEWS, LUCKNOW"


The World Sanskrit Day is being celebrated today. All India Radio aired the first ever special program in Sanskrit this morning titled "Bahujan Bhasha - Sanskrit Bhasha" to mark the occasion.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi thanked everyone invloved in promoting, teaching and using Sanskrit language. In a tweet, he described Sanskrit as a beautiful language which has made India a repository of knowledge for many years. He urged everyone to work towards making Sanskrit more popular.

Union Minister Prakash Javadekar has greeted the nation on the occasion. In his message, Mr Javadekar said ancient texts of India like the Vedas were composed in Sanskrit. He said, this language is the mother of many other languages.


In the run up to 74th Independence Day, we bring you a special story today about Agriculture and Farmer Welfare. Agriculture, which contributes 14 per cent to the GDP and employs 55 per cent of the population has been given top priority by the Government.

Agriculture and Farmers are in focus of Narendra Modi Government since it took over in 2014. In the last six years, the Government has taken many steps for empowerment of farmers and development of agriculture in the country. The government aims to double the income of farmers by 2022 and with initiatives like Pradhan Mantri-KISAN Samman Nidhi PM-KISAN, E-NAM, Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana farmers are getting benefits. Starting from production to marketing, government is emphasising on every point. The Agriculture Budget which was around 25 to 30 thousand crore rupees before 2014, increased to one lakh 50 thousand crore rupees. Seventy five thousand crore rupees are being sent to Farmers through Direct Benefit Transfer under PM KISAN. Anupam Mishra, AIR News, Delhi.


The Centre has laid a lot of emphasis on the development of Jammu and Kashmir. In November 2015, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a 80,068-crore rupee reconstruction plan for strengthening the socio-economic infrastructure of Jammu and Kashmir and balanced regional development. A report --

"The Government is focusing on providing 24x7 electricity and drinking water to people of Jammu and Kashmir. Many projects which were pending for years are now completed. IIT Jammu has started functioning from its own premises and Construction of AIIMS Jammu has been started. Srinagar Leh transmission line was completed and dedicated to public last year. 220 KV Srinagar- Alsteng - Dras - Kargil - Leh transmission system work was completed and Ladakh was connected to the national grid. 86 per cent work of 45 kilometre long New Banihal tunnel has been completed and it will be opened next year. Work is going on at a fast pace on major roads like Jammu-Akhnoor Road and Chenani-Sudhamahadev Road. Rambagh flyover in Srinagar was completed and opened for traffic. Kashmir will be connected by rail by December 2022. Chenab Bridge, the world's highest 359 meter high railway bridge in Chenab River will be completed next year. With Anupam Misra, Suparna Saikia, AIR News, Delhi."


In Jammu and Kashmir, the widely grown Saffron in Pampore area of south Kashmir's Pulwama district has the distinction for having been acknowledged as the best quality Saffron. Recently, the Union Government has issued a certificate of GI registration for Saffron grown in the Kashmir Valley. While expressing happiness on the development, Lieutenant Governor Girish Chandra Murmu said that this is the first major step to put Saffron produced in Kashmir Valley on the world map with authentication.


IPL 2020 will be played from September 19 to November 10 in the UAE this year. The decision to this effect was taken at a virtual meeting of IPL Governing Council last night.

The matches will be played in Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi subject to necessary clearances from the Government of India.

The final will be played on 10th November this year. The 53-day tournament will witness 10-afternoon matches starting at 3:30 PM Indian time while the evening matches will start at 7:30 PM.


Now, let us take a look at the weather forecast for tomorrow.

The National Capital Delhi will have generally cloudy sky with light rain. It will have a minimum temperature of around 28 degrees Celsius and maximum of 38 degrees.

Mumbai will experience a generally cloudy sky with heavy rain. The minimum temperature will be 26 degrees Celsius and the maximum will be around 34 degrees.

Chennai will have a generally cloudy sky with heavy rain and the temperature will hover between 26 and 34 degrees Celsius.

Kolkata will witness generally cloudy sky with heavy rain. The minimum temperature in the metropolis will be around 27 degrees celsius while the maximum will be 34 degrees.

On to the North, in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the minimum temperature will be 27 degrees Celsius in Jammu while the maximum will be around 35 degrees Celsius. The city will have a partly cloudy sky.

In Srinagar, the minimum temperature will be around 19 degrees while the maximum will be 32 degrees. The city will have partly cloudy sky becoming generally cloudy towards afternoon or evening or night.

Ladakh will have mainly clear sky becoming partly cloudy towards afternoon or evening. The temperature will hover between 15 and 30 degrees Celsius.

In Gilgit, the temperature will hover between 16 and 34 degrees Celsius. It will experience partly cloudy sky with possibility of rain or thunderstorm or duststorm.

In Muzzafarabad, there will be partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers. The minimum temperature will be 22 degrees Celsius while the maximum temperature will be 37 degrees.


The News Services Division of All India Radio, in its bilingual live phone-in programme today, will bring you a Special Discussion on COVID-19.

Dr. Prasoon Chatterjee, Associate Professor, Department of Geriatrics at All India Institute of Medical Sciences will participate in the discussion.

This programme can be heard tonight on FM Gold Channel and additional frequencies from 9.30 P.M. onwards.


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