News Roundup: Top news stories on January 1
First Published Jan 1, 2021, 2:35 PM IST
Here's a roundup of the latest news stories at this hour
'Covishield' one step close to emergency authorisation
Serum Institute of India's COVID-19 vaccine candidate Covishield has been recommended by the Subject Expert Committee which met on Friday to examine its emergency-use authorisation application.
With the SEC nod, the SII is one step away from making Covishield India's first approved COVID vaccine. SII now awaits the confirmation from Drug Controller General of India now. Read more
PMC Bank scam: ED seizes assets worth Rs 72 crore
The Enforcement Directorate has attached the properties of Pravin Raut worth Rs 72 crore under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act in connection with the Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative Bank scam investigation.
Pravin has been under the ED's radar after investigations pointed towards certain companies allegedly benefitting from funds that came in from the PMC Bank scam.
India, Pakistan exchange list of nuclear installations
Amid a frosty relationship, India and Pakistan have exchanged a list of their nuclear installations and facilities under a bilateral arrangement that prevents the two countries from attacking each other.
In a statement, MEA said: "India and Pakistan today exchanged, through diplomatic channels simultaneously at New Delhi and Islamabad, the list of nuclear installations and facilities, covered under the Agreement on the Prohibition of Attack against Nuclear Installations and Facilities."
This is the 30th consecutive exchange of the list with the first one taking place on January 1, 1992.
IIM-Ahmedabad won't demolish dorms built by Louis Kahn
The Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad has rolled back its earlier decision to pull down 14 of the 18 dormitories built by the legendary American architect Louis Kahn.
In a statement, the IIM-Ahmedabad's Board of Governors said they are withdrawing the 'Expression of Interest' or call for architects to rework the buildings.
The IIM-Ahmedabad's December 9 decision had drawn criticism from the institute’s alumni and several architects across the world.
Health Minister reviews dry run preparations
Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has reviewed the preparations for a dry run of administering of the coronavirus vaccine from January 2 in all states.
Briefing the media later, Health Minister said, "Our focus is on the vaccine cold chain system, storage, space, vaccination sites, teams. We need to strengthen our cold chain supply, syringes availability, trainers."
"Training is done at the block, state and national level. The dry run purpose is preparedness. The administration, police, security, transportation, health services, doctors, staff all of them have to come together along with their vast experiences to do vaccination. It will be a massive exercise with minutest possible details." Read more
Temple demolition: India lodges strong protest
Two days after the Hindu temple in Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa area was razed by a radical Islamists, India has lodged a strong protest over the matter.
Sources said that the protest has been lodged via diplomatic channels.
The Hindu temple in Terri village in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's Karak district was attacked on Wednesday which drew strong condemnation from human rights activists and Hindu community leaders. Read more
GST revenue collection at an all-time high
GST Revenue collection for December 2020 has recorded an all-time high since its implementation. The gross GST revenue collected in the month of December 2020 is Rs 1,15,174 crore.
In line with the recent trend of recovery in the GST revenues, the revenues for the month of December 2020 are 12% higher than the GST revenues in the same month last year.
During the month, revenues from import of goods were 27% higher and the revenues from the domestic transaction (including import of services) are 8% higher that the revenues from these sources during the same month last year.
Zomato clocks 4,250 orders per minute on New Year's Eve
With Coronavirus restrictions forcing people to stay at home, food delivery apps had a field day with orders piling up.
Zomato alone clocked over 4,254 orders per minute on Thursday. And the most ordered dishes were biryani and pizzas.
Zomato CEO Deepinder Goyal said in a tweet, "Yesterday, we clocked 60% more GMV than last new year’s eve. That’s GMV of ₹75 crores in one single day, with peak orders per minute (OPM) rate of 4,254."
IndiGo confirms December hacking
Indian airline operator IndiGo said confirmed that some segments of its data servers were hacked earlier in December.
In a statement, IndiGo said: "There is a possibility that some internal documents may get uploaded by the hackers on public websites and platforms. We realise the seriousness of the issue, and are continuing to engage with all relevant experts and law enforcement to ensure that the incident is investigated in detail"
Trump extends H-1B visa freeze till March 31
US President Donald Trump has extended the freeze on H-1B visas along with other types of foreign work visas by three months. The visa freeze has been extended till March 31.
The decision is expected to impact many Indian IT professionals and several US and Indian companies who were issued H-1B visas by the Trump administration for 2021, beginning October 1.
The H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in speciality occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise.
Coronavirus claims 256 more lives in 24 hours
India has reported under 300 deaths related to the coronavirus disease every day since the last one week.
According to today's government update, 256 fatalities were logged from across the country in 24 hours.
The Union health ministry has said 10 states and Union territories account for 80.47% of the new deaths and that Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Delhi account for 63% of total fatalities in the country.
Stalin writes to EPS, seeks assembly session against farm laws
Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam president MK Stalin has written a letter to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister E Palaniswami, seeking a special assembly session to bring a resolution against the Centre's farm laws.
In his letter, the DMK leader said: "A passage of the resolution must be brought in the Tamil Nadu Assembly against the three farm laws of the Centre. For that, the Assembly must be convened immediately."
"As Tamil Nadu was the first state to waive off loans to farmers and provide them free electricity, it is imperative that Tamil Nadu -- at this critical juncture for farmers -- unite without any distinction, stand by their side and insist that their demands be met."
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