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News18 Afternoon Digest: Mumbai Airport Shut as Cyclonic Storm Turns 'Extremely Severe', 2 Bengal Ministers Held in Narada Sting Case

High sea waves due to cyclone Tauktae hit Bhagavathi Prem Sinken Dredger, at Surathkal Beach near Mangaluru.

High sea waves due to cyclone Tauktae hit Bhagavathi Prem Sinken Dredger, at Surathkal Beach near Mangaluru.

Here are the top stories of this afternoon: 2 Bengal Ministers Held in Narada Sting Case; Mumbai Airport Shut, Bandra-Worli Sea Link Closed as Cyclonic Storm Turns 'Extremely Severe'; Top 10 Things You Must Know About Cyclone if You're Anywhere Near Mumbai; How Does DRDO’s Anti-Covid Drug Work? Will It Be A Game-Changer? Key Questions Answered; NEFT Money Transfer Facility Will Not Be Available for 14 hours on Sunday; Miss Universe 2021: Mexico's Andrea Meza Wins the Crown.

2 Bengal Ministers Held in Narada Sting Case, Row Erupts as Mamata Reaches CBI Office

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested on Monday three legislators of West Bengal’s ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC), including ministers Firhad Hakim and Subrata Mukherjee, sources in the agency said, in a dramatic development in a five-year-old corruption case. CBI’s action in what is known as the Narada sting operation case stirred a political controversy with the TMC accusing the agency of working at the behest of the Centre’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The BJP denied the charge and said there was no “vendetta politics” involved in the arrests, which came days after the TMC swept a bitterly fought assembly election in Bengal. READ MORE

Mumbai Airport Shut, Bandra-Worli Sea Link Closed as Cyclonic Storm Turns ‘Extremely Severe’

Tauktae has turned into an “extremely severe cyclonic storm”, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said today. The rapid intensification happened in the early hours of Monday, said the IMD which had earlier not predicted that Tauktae will intensify into an extremely severe cyclonic storm. It now has a wind speed of 180-190 kilometres per hour with winds gusting to 210 kilometres per hour. The IMD has, however, forecast that its intensity will reduce when it hits the Gujarat coast. “The very severe cyclonic storm ‘Tauktae’ (pronounced as Tau’Te) over east central Arabian Sea moved north-north-westwards with a speed of about 20 kmph during past six hours. READ MORE

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Cyclone Tauktae: Top 10 Things You Must Know if You’re Anywhere Near Mumbai

The IMD has issued an orange alert for Mumbai warning of very heavy rains at isolated places with strong winds on Monday as the very severe cyclonic storm Tauktae is likely to pass close from the Mumbai coast towards Gujarat. Three teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) stationed in the western suburbs of Mumbai have been put on alert. Teams of the Indian Navy are also kept on standby, officials said on Sunday night. The initial low pressure over the Arabian Sea has now intensified into an “extremely severe cyclonic storm" and is approaching the Maharashtra coast. READ MORE

How Does DRDO’s Anti-Covid Drug Work? Will It Be A Game-Changer? Key Questions Answered

A drug against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19), developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation, will be released by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday after it received regulatory approval for emergency use after year-long trials. India takes another key stride in the fight against the disease, clearing the therapeutic use of the drug that the government expects will reduce dependence on medical oxygen and also help in speedy recovery of patients admitted in hospitals. READ MORE

NEFT Money Transfer Facility Will Not Be Available for 14 hours on Sunday: RBI

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said on Monday that National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT) facility will not be available for at least 14 hours on May 23. “A technical upgrade of NEFT, targeted to enhance the performance and resilience, is scheduled after the close of business of May 22, 2021," the banking regulator said in a notification. “Accordingly, NEFT service will not be available from 00:01 hrs to 14:00 hrs on Sunday, May 23, 2021," it further added. “Member banks may inform their customers to plan their payment operations accordingly," the regulator said, adding, “NEFT Members will continue to receive event update(s) through NEFT system broadcasts." READ MORE

Miss Universe 2021: Mexico’s Andrea Meza Wins the Crown, India’s Adline Castelino in Top 5

After a tough competition with 73 other candidates, Miss Mexico Andrea Meza has been crowned the 69th Miss Universe during a three-hour televised competition held at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Hollywood in Florida. Former Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi of South Africa crowned the Mexican beauty at the event. Miss India Adline Castelino was declared the third runer-up. Taking to Twitter, Miss Universe 2015 Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach congratulated Andrea as wrote, “Congratulations Andrea Meza! Our new #MissUniverse Can’t wait to see the amazing journey you’ll have as Miss Universe. Congratulations Mexico!!" READ MORE

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