Wednesday, 07 December @ 03:00

Nabha jailbreak: Khalistan Liberation Front chief Harminder Mintoo arrested

The Delhi Police on 28 November arrested Khalistani terrorist Harminder Singh Mintoo who had escaped from Punjab's Nabha jail on Sunday.

According to media reports, Mintoo was nabbed in a joint operation by Delhi and Punjab police.

One of the accused of the Nabha jailbreak, Parminder Singh alias Painda, was arrested by the Shamli Police yesterday and huge cache of arms was also seized from his Fortuner car in Uttar Pradesh's Shamli.

The Punjab Government has suspended the Director General (Jails) and dismissed the Nabha Jail superintendent and deputy jail superintendent and set up a special task force to look into the Nabha jailbreak incident.

Opposition observing 'Aakrosh Divas' to show common man's anger: Congress

The Congress Party on Monday hit back at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for pointing fingers at the opposition instead of rectifying his fault and said the 'Aakrosh Divas' is being observed to highlight the nation's anger due to the government's demonetisation drive.

Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge, also rubbished reports suggesting that a 'Bharat Bandh' has been called today.

"Who is calling for Bharat Bandh? We said that we will be observing 'Aakrosh Divas' and we are doing all this to show the anger which is within the common man. Is it wrong to stand for the people of the nation?" asked Kharge.

"I will say that befooling people by making irrelevant statements is not good. Instead of rectifying their fault, the Prime Minister is pointing fingers at us and this does not suit him," he added.

The opposition parties have called for a countrywide protest today against what they call the government's "mishandling" of the currency ban. Only the Left Front, which has a presence in Kerala, Bengal and Tripura, has called for a strike or 'Bharat Bandh' in the three states.

Demonetisation 'once in a lifetime event', says RBI Governor Urjit Patel

Terming demonetisation as a "once in a lifetime event" that requires mammoth logistics, Governor Urjit Patel has said that the Reserve Bank of India is taking all necessary actions to "ease the genuine pain of citizens who are honest and who have been hurt" and hoped things will normalise at the earliest.

Speaking for the first time after the decision to withdraw old Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 notes, Dr Patel who has been facing criticism for keeping silent, also said the situation is being monitored on a daily basis while printing presses have started to re-balance the production of new notes towards Rs. 100 and Rs. 500 bills.

Giving details of the steps being taken by RBI, he said, "Both RBI and government have been getting the printing presses to work at capacity to get the new notes available to meet demand.

"RBI is interacting with the banks every day. They are telling us that the situation is gradually easing. The queues in branches and ATMs are shorter and the markets are starting to function, and there are no reported shortages of daily items of consumption.

"Also, about 40-50,000 people were deployed to refit the ATMs. Currency is available and banks are working in a mission mode to lift currency and take them to their branches and ATMs. The staff members of all banks have worked very hard, and we all owe them our gratitude," Dr Patel said.

Aakrosh Rally: Opposition likely to stage protest against demonetisation today

A 12-hour strike in Left-ruled states of West Bengal, Tripura and Kerala has jointly been called by the Left and allied parties on 28 November to protest against the inconvenience caused to the people due to the demonetisation drive of the Centre.

The main opposition Congress party and other opposition parties are expected to simultaneously take out an 'Aakrosh Rally' on the same issue.

Regional parties like the Trinamool Congress in West Bengal, the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) in Bihar, the Dravida Munnetra Kazhgam (DMK) in Tamil Nadu and others are also expected to stage protests in their respective states.

Announcing the decision, West Bengal Communist Party of India chief Biman Bose has said banks, ambulances and other emergency services would be functional during the 12-hour strike beginning at 6 a.m.

Wednesday, 07 December @ 03:00

African elephants are being born without tusks due to poaching

African elephants are running the risk of evolving into a tuskless species thanks to rampant poaching. According to researchers, in some places, close to 98% of females are being born without tusks, a percentage that was as low as 2-6% in the past.

The African elephant population has been decimated by poaching in recent years, with over a third of the population being wiped out in the last 10 years. Researchers expect that this could push African elephants to be largely tuskless like their Asian counterparts.

Japanese skating rink freezes fishes for centrepiece, gets shut down

A Japanese ice skating rink has landed itself in hot water for a stunt - putting frozen fish beneath its ice rink.

The theme park, Space World, in south-west Japan, embedded the fish in the ice to, among other things, spell out the word 'hello' and point in the direction skaters were supposed to go.

The macabre spectacle drew tons of outrage after a news report aired that made it seem like the park has actually frozen live fish for the spectacle. While Space World has clarified that the already dead fish were bought for the stunt, they've shut down the rink after public outrage.

Wednesday, 07 December @ 03:00

After free basics failure, Facebook pushes 'Express Wifi'

Months after the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) deemed Facebook's Free Basics initiative illegal, Facebook has changed tracks in its quest to penetrate the Indian market. Their new attempt comes in the form of 'Express WiFi' - a program "working with carriers, internet service providers and local entrepreneurs to help expand connectivity to underserved locations around the world".

The program allows local entrepreneurs to team up with Facebook to provide internet access to their neighbours while making a steady income. While Facebook has maintained that the program is already operational, it hasn't divulged any details of local partners. Facebook has also not clarified if the internet access would be as limited as Free Basics or whether it would be unfettered.

 
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