Russia News LIVE Updates: A European Union plan to cut gas use and help Germany wean itself off dependency on Russia will come into effect early next week, the bloc’s presidency said Friday. Last week, EU member states agreed to reduce their use of gas by 15 percent over the winter, with exceptions for some countries and despite opposition from Hungary. Officials have since been working on the legal texts of the plan, which will be voluntary unless the member states agree to give the European Commission emergency powers.
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EU plan to cut use of Russian gas comes into effect next week
A European Union plan to cut gas use and help Germany wean itself off dependency on Russia will come into effect early next week, the bloc’s presidency said Friday. Last week, EU member states agreed to reduce their use of gas by 15 percent over the winter, with exceptions for some countries and despite opposition from Hungary. Officials have since been working on the legal texts of the plan, which will be voluntary unless the member states agree to give the European Commission emergency powers.
Congress’s ‘black protest’ against price rise; Shah links it with ‘appeasement’ politics, Ram temple
Black was the colour of the protest for the Congress on Friday with Kurtas and headgears to scarves and sarees being among the sartorial choices the party leaders opted for as part of a novel protest to draw the government’s attention to what they said was a “grim” economic situation in the country. The 136-year-old party which is known for its traditional approach to protests sprang a surprise with what many saw as an out-of-the-box messaging by deciding to have black as the dress code for its nationwide protest against price rise, hike in GST on essential items and unemployment. However, Home Minister Amit Shah linked Congress leaders’ protest in black clothes to the party’s “appeasement” politics, claiming that it was to convey its opposition to the Ram temple foundation laid by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on this day in 2020.
One death, 1,055 new COVID-19 cases in Haryana
Haryana reported 1,055 fresh COVID-19 cases and one death taking the cumulative infections and death toll in the state to 10,34,204 and 10,647, respectively, a health department bulletin said. The death was reported from the Kaithal district, whereas the fresh cases were reported from districts, including Gurugram (416), Faridabad (117), Panchkula (77), Yamunanagar (68), Karnal (53), Ambala (51), Hisar (47) and Kaithal (31).
Chinese military jets scramble over Taiwan Strait in the latest uptick in tensions between the two countries, reports Reuters.
Piyush Goyal holds meeting with trade, industry representatives
Union Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal on Friday interacted with representatives of Export Promotion Councils and Industry associations to review the issues related to exports. Speaking to Export Promotion Councils (EPCs) and Industry representatives, Minister stated that the ball is in our court and we have to be ready to take on global competition. He said that Government is doing its best through various measures to support Indian exporters to compete globally, according to an official statement released by the Ministry of Commerce & Industry.
Japan has approved Covaxin Covid 19 vaccine booster dose for travellers: Bharat Biotech
Level 2 fire reported in Pediatric ward at Wadia Hospital in Mumbai
Level 2 fire reported in closed Pediatric OT on 1st floor Wadia Hospital, Parel, in Mumbai. Fire tenders reach the spot. No injury has been reported. Fire has been brought under control. Patients in the nearest wards shifted to safe places.
823 new Covid cases, 2 deaths in J&K
Covid upward surge continued in J&K on Friday where 823 new cases and 2 deaths were reported during the last 24 hours. Officials said the cases included 633 from Kashmir division and 190 from Jammu division, while there was also a death each in both divisions, taking the number of people killed by coronavirus in the Union Territory to 4,776.
Rupee rises 16 paise to close at 79.24 against US dollar
Till now, Congress was protesting in normal attire but today they protested wearing black clothes. It’s an insult to Ram Bhakts. They chose this day as today’s Ayodhya Diwas which marks the beginning of construction of Ram Janambhoomi: UP CM Yogi Adityanath
China warns US not to act rashly to avoid creating bigger crisis
China warned the United States not to act rashly so as to a create a bigger crisis, its foreign minister Wang Yi told a media briefing after the close of various ASEAN meetings in the Cambodian capital on Friday.
Congress leaders’ protest in black clothes a message against Ram temple foundation-stone laying by PM Modi on this day in 2020
– Home Minister Amit Shah
Sonia, Rahul did not cooperate in ED probe prior to parliament session: Pralhad Joshi
Retaliating to the statement of Rajya Sabha Opposition leader Mallikarjun Kharge, Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs, Mines and Coal, Pralhad Joshi on Friday said that Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi did not cooperate in the probe by the Enforcement Directorate (ED). Kharge stated earlier that how can they participate in the parliamentary debates if the ED takes up investigation during the parliament session. Pralhad Joshi questioned whether Congress leaders extended their support when Sonia and Rahul Gandhi were called by the ED for investigation when there was no session?
Congress supporters organise protest in Delhi; legal action taken against them
Congress supporters organized a protest in Delhi today. Orders u/s 144 CrPC are also in force in Delhi. The protestors tried to obstruct the police officers from performing their duties, manhandled and injured them. Appropriate legal action is being taken, said Delhi Police sources. A total of 335 protestors including 65 MPs have been detained under 65 Delhi Police Act in order to maintain law and order in the area. Intimation about the detention of MPs/MLAs is being sent to the respective competent authorities.
Umesh Kolhe murder case: NIA produces two accused in court
NIA produced two arrested accused from Amravati, Mushfiq Ahmed and Abdul Arbaz in court. The court has sent both the accused to NIA custody till August 12.
183 pilgrims left for Amarnath cave shrine from Jammu
Over 180 pilgrims on Friday left Jammu city for twin base camps of 3,880-metre-high cave shrine of Amarnath in south Kashmir Himalayas, officials said. A total of 183 pilgrims left in 36th batch from Bhagwati Nagar Yatri Niwas here in a convoy of 8 vehicles amid heavy security of CRPF this morning, the officials said. They said that 62 pilgrims heading for Baltal were the first to leave the Bhagwati Nagar camp in three vehicles followed by the second convoy of 5 vehicles carrying 121 pilgrims for Pahalgam. With this, a total of 1,44,490 pilgrims have left from the Bhagwati Nagar base camp for the Valley since June 29, the day the first batch of pilgrims was flagged off by Lt Governor Manoj Sinha.
Partha Chatterjee and Arpita Mukherjee remanded to 14 day judicial custody till August 18
China ending cooperation with US on a number of issues
China said on Friday it was ending cooperation with the United States on a litany of key issues including climate change, anti-drug efforts, and military talks, as relations between the two superpowers nosedive over the island of Taiwan, according to AFP sources.
West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee meets Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Delhi.
Taiwan’s Defence Ministry says 68 Chinese planes, 13 warships crossed median line Friday
Spain reports first deaths from acute hepatitis in children
Spain has reported its first two deaths from acute hepatitis, or liver inflammation, among children — an illness whose causes are unknown and is being monitored by world health officials.Spain’s Health Ministry said that 46 cases of the illness have been reported in Spain and that three required liver transplants.Of the three, two died — a 15-month-old baby in June and a 6-year-old in July.
Puneeth Rajkumar to be awarded Karnataka Ratna
South superstar actor Puneeth Rajkumar is to be conferred the ‘Karnataka Ratna’ award posthumously on November 1. Karnataka’s CM Basavaraj Bommai after the inauguration of the Independence Day Flower Show at the Lalbagh Glass House said, “We have decided to present the ‘Karnataka Ratna’ award to Kannada film star Dr Puneeth Rajkumar on November 1.” Talking to the media Bommai stated, “A committee would be formed to make preparations for the award presentation ceremony. Members of Dr Rajkumar’s family would also be included as members of the committee. We all together will present the award posthumously to Puneeth in a highly dignified manner.”
What’s happening at WazirX?
- In light of one of WazirX’s directors being non-cooperative in an Enforcement Directorate investigation, a search operation was conducted under PMLA on August 3.
- Sameer Mhatre, Director, WazirX, was found to have complete remote access to the database of WazirX, but has not provided transactional details related to crypto assets purchased from the proceeds of an instant loan app.
- Lax KYC norms, loose regulatory control of transactions between WazirX & Binance, non-recording of transactions on Blockchains to save costs and non-recording of the KYC of the opposite wallets has ended up with WazirX unable to show accounts for the missing crypto assets.
- According to the Enforcement Directorate, WazirX has helped 16 accused fintech companies in laundering the proceeds of crime using the crypto route. Therefore, equivalent movable assets to the extent of Rs. 64.67 crore were frozen under PMLA. Further investigation is ongoing.
ED freezes crypto exchange WazirX director’s assets
Indian Army conducts five-day exercise to test satellites
In a five-day-long satellite communication exercise, the Indian Army has tested all of its space-based assets to ensure their operational readiness, sources in the defence establishment said on Friday. The Army has also completed a study on the communication, cyber and electromagnetic effects reported during the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, they added.
The exercise named “Skylight” was conducted from July 25 to July 29, the sources said.
Thai nightclub fire kills 14
Thailand’s prime minister on Friday ordered an investigation into a massive blaze that tore through a nightclub, killing at least 14 people. The fire broke out around 1:00 am (1800 GMT Thursday) at the Mountain B nightspot in Chonburi province’s Sattahip district, about 150 kilometres (90 miles) southeast of Bangkok. Video footage posted by a rescue service showed desperate revellers fleeing the club screaming, their clothes ablaze, as a huge fire raged in the background.
Beijing halts high-level military dialogue with U.S., suspends other cooperation
Beijing announced on Friday that it was halting cooperation with the United States in a number of areas, including dialogue between senior-level military commanders, in retaliation for the visit this week to Taiwan by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
China’s foreign ministry also said in a statement that it was halting climate talks with the United States, as well as cooperation on cross-border crime prevention and on repatriating illegal migrants, among eight specific measures.
Meta trims election misinformation efforts as midterms loom
Facebook owner Meta is quietly curtailing some of the safeguards designed to thwart voting misinformation or foreign interference in U.S. elections as the November midterm vote approaches.
It’s a sharp departure from the social media giant’s multibillion-dollar efforts to enhance the accuracy of posts about U.S. elections and regain trust from lawmakers and the public after their outrage over learning the company had exploited people’s data and allowed falsehoods to overrun its site during the 2016 campaign.
Odisha logs 836 new COVID-19 cases, one fresh fatality
Odisha’s COVID-19 tally rose to 13,17,309 on Friday as 836 more people, including 169 children, tested positive for the infection, while one fresh fatality pushed the toll to 9,145, a health bulletin said. The state had logged 870 cases on Thursday. Sundargarh reported the highest number of fresh infections at 242, followed by 117 in Khurda district, where state capital Bhubaneswar is located.
Four NLFT militants surrender with weapons in Tripura
Four insurgents of outlawed National Liberation Front of Tripura (Biswamohan Debbarma) and two collaborators surrendered before the police on Friday, a senior police official said. They surrendered one AK-47 rifle and two magazines, two pistols with three magazines and a note book containing extortion notices, he said. This was the biggest surrender of militants in the state in the past one year. The north eastern state has not witnessed any major extremist-related incident since the past one year.
China military says it conducted drills to the north, southwest and east of Taiwan
China’s military on Friday conducted air and sea combat drills to the north, southwest and east of Taiwan and continues “to test the troops’ joint combat capabilities”, it said in a statement on Friday. The statement came on the official Weibo account of the Eastern Theatre Command of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA)
China sanctions Pelosi after Taiwan visit
China on Friday imposed sanctions against US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her immediate family members, following her brief visit to Taiwan that has riled up Beijing. Chinese Foreign Minister announced the decision saying, Pelosi, who is among the top US three officials, disregarded the country’s concern and insisted on visiting Taiwan, state media outlet Global Times reported.
The ministry further said the trip “seriously interferes in China’s internal affairs, undermine China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, tramples on the one-China principle and threatens peace and stability in Taiwan Straits.”
ED conducts raids in Tamil Nadu in Chinese visa ‘scam’ case
The Enforcement Directorate on Friday conducted searches at half-a-dozen locations in Tamil Nadu in connection with its money laundering probe into a case of alleged irregularities in the issuance of visas to 263 Chinese nationals in 2011, that also involves Congress MP Karti Chidambaram, officials said. The premises of some companies and their promoters are being raided in Chennai and nearby areas, they said. The ED had initiated a probe in May and filed a case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) after taking cognisance of a first information report (FIR) registered by the CBI in the same case.
Opposition protests force adjournments in both houses of Parliament
Protests by opposition parties including Congress on issues like price rise and action of investigative agencies forced adjournment of both the houses of parliament on Friday. After the Rajya Sabha met for the day, opposition leaders began protesting an adjournment till 11.30 am. However, when the house met again similar scenes were repeated and the Rajya Sabha was adjourned till 2:30 pm. Meanwhile, similar scenes were witnessed in the Lok Sabha where Congress leaders led by Sonia Gandhi had dressed in black as a mark of protest. The Lok Sabha was also adjourned till 2 pm following an uproar. Prior to this adjournment, the Competition (Amendment) Bill, 2022 and the New Delhi International Arbitration Centre (Amendment) Bill, 2022 were introduced in the Lok Sabha. Rajya Sabha Chairperson M Venkaiah Naidu on Friday said members of the parliament (MPs) cannot avoid summons of law enforcement agencies in criminal cases whether the session is on or not.
“China military drills are ‘significant escalation'”
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Friday that China’s military exercises aimed at Taiwan including missiles fired into Japan’s exclusive economic zone represent a “significant escalation” and that he has urged Beijing to back down. China launched the drills following a visit by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan that infuriated Beijing, which claims the self-governed island as its own territory.
Blinken told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Cambodia, however, that Pelosi’s visit was peaceful and did not represent a change in American policy toward Taiwan, accusing China of using it as a “pretext to increase provocative military activity in and around the Taiwan Strait”.
Omega Seiki, Agri Junction tie up to deploy over 10k EVs in rural market
Omega Seiki Mobility (OSM) on Friday announced a strategic partnership with Agri Junction to deploy over 10,000 electric two and three-wheelers in rural markets by current fiscal year. In the first phase, these vehicles will be introduced in tier II and III markets of Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra, the two firms said in a joint release. Faridabad-headquartered Omega Seiki product range comprises electric three-wheeler Rage+, passenger electric three-wheeler Stream and light commercial vehicle M1KA.
Three more ships with grain depart Ukraine ports under UN deal
Three more ships with grain have left Ukrainian ports and are headed to Turkey for inspection, Turkey’s defense ministry said Friday, evidence that a U.N.-backed deal is working to export Ukrainian grain that has been trapped by Russia’s invasion. The three ships are loaded with over 58,000 tons of corn. Much of the grain that Ukraine exports is used as animal feed, experts say. Ukraine is one of the world’s main breadbaskets and the stocks of grain trapped were exacerbating a sharp rise of food prices and raising fears of a global hunger crisis. The departure of the ships comes after the first grain shipment since the start of the war left Ukraine earlier this week. It crossed the Black Sea under the breakthrough wartime deal and passed inspection Wednesday in Istanbul and then headed on to Lebanon. The ships that departed Friday from Ukraine are from among over a dozen bulk carriers and cargo ships that had been loaded with grain and stuck at the ports there since the start of Russia’s invasion in late February.
Germany’s health minister tests positive for COVID-19
Germany’s health minister, an epidemiologist by training who has led the country’s fight against COVID-19 since December, has tested positive for the coronavirus. Health Minister Karl Lauterbach’s ministry said early Friday that the 59-year-old has only light symptoms and is working from home. It said that Lauterbach has had four vaccine shots and his infection “shows that, with the highly contagious omicron variant, an infection can’t be entirely ruled out even with utmost caution.”
BJP MP urges Centre to take measures to declare Bihar drought-hit
With farmers in Bihar hit by a massive deficit in monsoon rains, a BJP MP in Lok Sabha on Friday asked the Centre to take quick measures to declare the state drought-hit. Raising the issue during the Zero Hour, Patliputra MP Ram Kripal Yadav said the situation in the state was “frighteningly bad” and the Centre needed to take immediate steps to provide relief to farmers. He urged the central government to send a high level team to review the situation in the state.
Rahul Gandhi detained by Delhi Police
Several Congress parliamentarians, including Rahul Gandhi, were on Friday detained by the Delhi Police after they carried out a protest march against the Central government in between the Parliament House and Rashtrapati Bhavan in the national capital. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, while speaking to the media persons before getting detained, accused the Delhi Police of manhandling the partymen.
Congress leader and former Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat detained by police during the party’s protest against Centre on price rise and unemployment
We are protesting peacefully against inflation, price rise, unemployment, GST rate hike among other issues
– Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge
All Congress MPs were marching towards Rashtrapati Bhawan to raise the issue of inflation and price rise but they are not allowing us to go ahead from here. Our job is to raise the issues of the people…Some MPs detained, also beaten
– Congress MP Rahul Gandhi at Vijay Chowk
Encounter breaks out in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kulgam
An encounter broke out between militants and security forces in Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir on Friday, police said. “Encounter has started at Redwani area of #Kulgam. Police and security forces are on the job. Further details shall follow,” a police spokesman tweeted. There were no reports of any casualties so far on either side, a police official said.
Congress MPs protest march reaches Vijay Chowk
Congress parliamentarians, protesting against the government over inflation, GST and unemployment, reached Vijay Chowk near the Rashtrapati Bhavan and were subsequently stopped by the police. All Congress MPs are dressed in black to register their protest. The police were not allowing the protesting lawmakers to move forward towards the Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Rahul compares Centre with Hitler’s regime
Comparing PM Modi with Hitler, Rahul Gandhi said, “Hitler had also won elections, he too used to win elections. How did he use to do it? He had control of all of Germany’s institutions…Give me the entire system, then I will show you how elections are won.”
Rahul Gandhi further said, “We’re witnessing the death of democracy. What India has built brick by brick, starting almost a century ago, is being destroyed in front of your eyes. Anybody who stands against this idea of the onset of dictatorship is viciously attacked, jailed, arrested & beaten up.”
Pelosi says US will ‘not allow’ China to isolate Taiwan
US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Friday that the United States will “not allow” China to isolate Taiwan, after her visit to the self-ruled island infuriated Beijing. China, which views Taiwan as part of its territory, launched its largest-ever military exercises around the island after Pelosi defied stern threats to become the highest-profile US official to set foot on Taiwanese soil in years. Now in Tokyo on the final leg of her Asian tour, Pelosi did not comment directly on the drills but argued that American politicians should be able to travel to Taiwan freely.
No GST on room rents of ‘sarais’ managed by religious or charitable trusts
The Finance Ministry has said that the Goods and Services Tax will not apply on room rents of ‘sarais’ (inns) or properties managed by religious and charitable institutions. The clarification was issued by the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) on Thursday evening to clear the confusion with regard to the levy of GST on room rents. This clarification by the Finance Ministry came following a demand from various quarters including AAP MP Raghav Chadha that the GST on rooms rented by religious institutions be withdrawn.
Piped cooking gas price hiked by Rs 2.63 per unit in Delhi due to rise in input costs, says IGL
Taiwan condemns ‘evil neighbour’ China over war drills
Taiwan blasted its “evil neighbour next door” on Friday after China encircled the island with a series of huge military drills that were condemned by the United States and other Western allies. During Thursday’s military exercises, which continued Friday, China fired ballistic missiles and deployed both fighter jets and warships around Taiwan.
Rajya Sabha proceedings adjourned briefly till 11.30 am
Proceedings have ground to halt amid Opposition uproar over alleged misuse of ED, hike in GST
Landslides force closure of Jammu-Srinagar highway, Mughal Road
The Jammu-Srinagar National Highway and Mughal Road were closed for vehicular traffic due to landslides and shooting stones triggered by heavy rain at several places in Jammu and Kashmir’s Ramban and Poonch districts on Friday, officials said.
A few hundred vehicles, including those carrying a batch of Amarnath Yatra pilgrims, are stranded on the highway, they said. Heavy rains triggered shooting of stones at Mehaar and Cafeteria Morh in Ramban, blocking the highway, the officials said.
U.S. calls China reaction to Pelosi’s Taiwan visit “flagrantly provocative”
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken told an Asian meeting of top diplomats on Friday that China’s reaction to U.S. house speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan was “flagrantly provocative”, a western official said.
Blinken, speaking at the East Asia Summit in Cambodia, said China had sought to intimidate not only Taiwan, but neighbours too, after it launched the largest-ever military drills in the Taiwan Strait, the official said.
Shares rise, rupee strengthens after RBI rate hike
Indian shares advanced, the rupee strengthened and bond yields rose after the country’s central bank hiked a key policy rate for the third time to tackle persistently high inflation in Asia’s third-largest economy. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) raised the key policy repo rate by 50 basis points.
“With inflation expected to remain above the upper tolerance threshold in Q2 and Q3 of the current financial year, the MPC stressed that sustained high inflation could de-stabilise inflation expectations and harm growth in the medium term,” RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das said.
Assam delegation to visit Mizoram on August 9-10 for border talks
A five-member delegation headed by Assam Border Protection and Development Minister Atul Bora will be on a two-day visit to Mizoram from August 9 to discuss issues related to the inter-state boundary dispute, an official said on Friday. A special officer and private secretary to the Assam border protection and development minister had on Wednesday informed the Mizoram government that the Assam delegation would arrive in Aizawl the next Tuesday to have two-day talks over the boundary issues, he said.
Rahul Gandhi holds press conference, Delhi Police on vigil amid Congress protests
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi is holding a press conference at the party headquarters in New Delhi amid the ongoing protests by the Congress party in the national capital on issues of price rise and unemployment. Delhi Police officials have briefed security personnel at Vijay Chowk, ahead of the protests. Notably, Delhi Police has denied permission to Congress for holding protests. The police officials said that the prohibitory orders are in force in the national capital. The Delhi Police has imposed Section 144 CrPC in the entire area of the New Delhi district except for Jantar Mantar. The police said that protest/dharna/ gherao in the area of New Delhi district on August 5 cannot be permitted in view of security, law and order and traffic reasons.
Markets bounce back after a day’s breather
Equity benchmarks began the trade on a positive note on Friday in tandem with largely firm Asian markets and ahead of the RBI’s policy meeting outcome. The 30-share BSE benchmark climbed 227.89 points to 58,526.69 in early trade. The broader NSE Nifty advanced 64.35 points to 17,446.35.
PayTM Money app faces outage in crucial trading hours
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PM Modi congratulates India’s medal winners at CWG
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday congratulated Sudhir on winning gold in para powerlifting at the Commonwealth Games and lauded him for his consistent performance. He also hailed Murali Sreeshankar for winning silver medal in the men’s long jump, noting that it is after decades India has won podium finish in the event at the CWG.
US, Russia, China take part in talks with SE Asian nations
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken joined the foreign ministers of Russia and China at a meeting on Friday with top diplomats from Southeast Asia that comes at a time of increased tensions between Washington, Moscow and Beijing. The East Asia Summit of the ongoing Association of Southeast Asian Nations meetings in Cambodia’s capital was the first time the three men were scheduled to take part in the same forum.