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News18 Evening Digest: SC Agrees to Examine Constitutionality of 'Love Jihad' Laws and Other Top Stories

File photo of the Supreme Court.

File photo of the Supreme Court.

Here are the top stories we are covering this evening: SC agrees to examine constitutionality of 'love jihad' laws but refuses stay; India steps up vigil to curb bird flu spread; Democrats win first Georgia runoff hours before Congress certifies Biden victory; U'khand BJP chief calls Congress leader 'Budhiya', CM Trivendra Singh Rawat steps in to apologise; Virat Kohli under 'conflict of interest' scanner yet again for links with gaming platform sponsoring team India kits; Nashik, Pune, CST and now Aurangabad: Maharashtra has a long saga of renaming cities; The White Tiger first reviews: Critics are super impressed, declare Adarsh Gourav 'star'.

SC Agrees to Examine Constitutionality of 'Love Jihad' Laws But Refuses Stay, to Hear Matter in 4 Weeks

The Supreme Court Wednesday agreed to examine controversial new laws of Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand regulating religious conversions due to inter-faith marriages. A bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde refused, however, to stay the controversial provisions of the laws and issued notices to both state governments on two different petitions. The pleas, filed by advocate Vishal Thakre and others and an NGO Citizen for Justice and Peace, have challenged the constitutional validity of the Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Religious Conversion Ordinance, 2020 and the Uttarakhand Freedom of Religion Act, 2018 which regulate religious conversions of inter-faith marriages. READ MORE

Bird Flu Outbreak: India Steps up Vigil to Curb Spread as 10 European Nations Also Hit

Hundreds of thousands of birds are being culled across the country as India grapples with a growing outbreak of a highly pathogenic avian influenza, which has led to the deaths of lakhs of birds in the last 10 days. Cases have so far been reported from five states and the central government has issued an alert, and has launched a drive to identify those with suspected flu symptoms in the affected areas. READ MORE

Democrats Win First Georgia Runoff Hours Before Congress Certifies Biden Victory, Control of Senate in Reach

Joe Biden's Democratic Party took a giant step Wednesday towards seizing control of the US Senate as they won the first of two Georgia run-offs, hours before Congress was set to certify the president-elect's victory over Donald Trump. Reverend Raphael Warnock's victory, projected by multiple US networks overnight, capped a grueling nine-week runoff campaign and puts Georgia's other knife-edge race in the spotlight for its potential to impact the balance of power in Washington. READ MORE

U'khand BJP Chief Calls Congress Leader 'Budhiya', CM Trivendra Singh Rawat Steps in to Apologise

Uttarakhand BJP state president Bansidhar Bhagat on Tuesday allegedly called the leader of opposition and senior Congress leader Indira Hridayesh, a ‘Budhiya’ at an event with party workers in Nainital’s Bhimtal area. However, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat offered a public apology to Hridayesh on Twitter and said that he would call her on Wednesday to apologise again. READ MORE

Virat Kohli Under 'Conflict of Interest' Scanner Yet Again for Links With Gaming Platform Sponsoring Team India Kits

Indian captain Virat Kohli finds himself in the Conflict of Interest web over his investment in a company that owns the online gaming platform Mobile Premier League (MPL). MPL is BCCI's official kit sponsor and merchandise partner. According to a report, Kohli - named brand ambassador of MPL in January 2020 - was 'allotted 68 CCDs with a face value of Rs 10, each issued at a premium of Rs 48,990 (Rs 33.32 lakh)', which will be converted into equity shares at the end of 10 years and the Indian skipper will end up having 0.051 per cent stake in the company, Galactus Funware Technology Private Limited, which owns the gaming platform. READ MORE

Nashik, Pune, CST and Now Aurangabad: Maharashtra Has a Long Saga of Renaming Cities

Chennai was Madras, Mumbai was Bombay, Kolkata was Calcutta. The latest in the list of places whose names have been changed are Mughalsarai which is now called Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Nagar and Allahabad which is now Prayagraj. Now, Maharashtra's Aurangabad is caught in the name change controversy. READ MORE

The White Tiger First Reviews: Critics are Super Impressed, Declare Adarsh Gourav 'Star'

The first reviews for Ramin Bahrani’s The White Tiger are out. Starring Adarsh Gourav, Priyanka Chopra, and Rajkummar Rao among others, The White Tiger, based on the adaptation of the Aravind Adiga novel, is the story of a driver who takes an unusual path after he is wrongly framed for an accident. Reviewers are so far impressed by Bahrani's retelling of Adiga’s Booker-winning novel about aspiration in modern India. The White Tiger starts streaming on Netflix from January 22. READ MORE


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