India-China tension, GDP slump, COVID-19 in focus this monsoon session as MPs gear up for debate
India-China faceoff, the slump in GDP growth, the situation of the economy and migrant crisis are some of the key issues that are likely to dominate the Monsoon session of Parliament which will begin from Monday. The agenda for the session was decided during a business advisory committee meeting called by the Lok Sabha speaker Om Birla on Sunday. While the government said that the issues for discussion would be finalised on Tuesday when the BAC will meet again, the schedule for the next two days has been decided.
Hailing grit of 'Atmanirbhar' students, Centre says 90% candidates sat for NEET despite COVID-19, Opposition protests
Nearly 90% candidates appeared in the medical entrance exam NEET held at over 3,800 centres across the country amid strict precautions in view of the Covid-19 pandemic. The NEET began at 2 pm, but entry to centres started at 11 am. Students were allotted different slots for staggered movement to ensure social distancing. Based on random sampling, the NTA said that the attendance for the exam was between 85-90 per cent. However, the official attendance figures were not available yet. The attendance in 2019 was 92.9 per cent. The candidates who missed the exams after testing positive for Covid-19 will get another opportunity to sit for the test, the date for which will be announced later.
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Moving ahead: Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said he would offer himself to take the vaccine against COVID-19 in a bid to dispel fears around the same. "While no date has been fixed for the vaccine launch, it may be ready by the first quarter of 2021," Vardhan said.
Bihar polls: Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave his seal of approval to Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar as the face of the NDA ahead of elections in the state, saying Kumar had a “very important role” to play in taking Bihar forward on the path to progress.
PLA tactics: Ahead of the 25th round of boundary talks between China and Bhutan, the PLA is set to open a front against the Kingdom with a build-up in its western and central parts to settle the border on terms favourable to Beijing, a report said. China may use transgressions in central Bhutan for a trade-off on already encroached areas.
No more: Former Union minister Raghuvansh Prasad Singh, whose recent resignation from the RJD founded and headed by Lalu Prasad left political waters in Bihar a stir, passed away on Sunday, a day after he fell critically ill and was put on a ventilator.
Ray of hope: AstraZeneca resumed British clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine, one of the most advanced in development, after getting the green light from safety watchdogs, the company said. It added that safety reviewers had recommended to Britain’s Medicines Health Regulatory Authority that it was safe to resume the British trials.
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Power play: For the past four years, the question uppermost on the minds of many keen observers of politics in Maharashtra, is not “Nathabhau (Eknath Khadse) ko gussa kyon aata hai?” Dhaval Kulkarni writes that while the reasons for the disgruntlement of the senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader are obvious, there are speculations about why he has uncharacteristically failed to take his running battle to the logical end. But, like many complex questions in politics, this too may lack any ephemeral explanations or answers.
Border row: Tense calm prevailed over the Line of Actual Control in Eastern Ladakh for the fourth night on Saturday. Officials said that though troops continued to hold their respective positions, there has been no incident anywhere along the LAC since S Jaishanker met his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi. Arunima reports that Saturday night was the fourth straight night when at North Bank of Pangong Tso, between Finger 3 and Finger 4, 1,500-2,000 troops from each side held onto their positions overnight.