News18 Afternoon Digest: Role of Choksi's Cousin in Abduction Plot?, Delhi and Punjab Recorded Deaths at Twice National Avg in May

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Role of Choksi’s Cousin in Abduction Plot, Pressure on PM Browne: Lawyer Reveals All

Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne has yet again pushed for fugitive Mehul Choksi's direct deportation to India calling him an Indian citizen. Browne has also accused the opposition, United Progressive Party, of striking a deal with Choksi for political campaign funding in elections in return for protection. "It's a red herring", Browne told CNN-News18. "Choksi changed his lawyer to a well-known member of the UPP; former attorney general under the UPP, Justin Simon. We have it on reliable authority that the UPP had promised Choksi protection, for campaign funding. That is why they are so vehement, that he should not be deported from Dominica to India, but back to Antigua where he could continue to hide behind the constitutional protections of citizenship," the Antigua PM added. READ MORE

‘May’ Never Come Again: Delhi, Punjab Recorded Deaths at Twice the National Average in Deadliest Month

Delhi recorded a Covid death rate (CFR) of 2.9 per cent in May, more than double the national average during the month (1.3 per cent). According to a report by Times of India, Punjab and Uttarakhand also recorded deaths at more than double the national average, 2.8 per cent 2.7 per cent respectively. This was the highest monthly toll reported by any country since the Covid outbreak began. The capital reported 8,090 deaths and nearly 2.8 lakh cases in May, translating to a CFR of 2.92 per cent. Uttarakhand, the venue of this year's Mahakumbh, reported 59 per cent of all deaths from the virus in May. READ MORE

WHO Says Only One Strain of Covid-19 Delta Variant First Detected in India of Concern Now The WHO said Tuesday that only one strain of the Covid-19 Delta variant first detected in India was now considered "of concern”, while two other strains had been downgraded. The B.1.617 variant of the virus, which has in part been blamed for India's explosive outbreak, has been dubbed a triple mutant variant since it is split into three lineages. The UN health agency last month declared the entire strain a "variant of concern”, or VOC, but on Tuesday, it said only one of the sub-lineages deserved that label. READ MORE

‘It Took About Ten Days to Convince Sourav Ganguly to Let MS Dhoni Keep Wickets’ Former BCCI chairman of selectors Kiran More has recalled how his team convinced former India captain Sourav Ganguly to let MS Dhoni keep wickets for East Zone instead of Deep Dasgupta in the 2003-04 Duleep Trophy final against North Zone. During that period, India didn't have a specialist wicketkeeper-batter. Instead, they had asked Rahul Dravid to fulfill that responsibility and the legendary batter did an impressive job but the selectors felt that the team needs a specialist who can also give them some quick runs in the lower middle-order. READ MORE

6-yr-old Mumbai Girl Narrates Story of Dad Buried in Kitchen. Police Finds Mom, Her Lover’s Murder Plot A shocking incident came to light from Mumbai's Dahisar East area on Wednesday when a six-year-old told her uncle about how her father laid dead beneath the floor of the kitchen. The girl's mother had killed her husband with the help of her paramour and buried him in the kitchen, police said, adding that the incident came to light when the uncle filed a complaint on the basis of the minor's narration. While the woman has been arrested, her lover is still on the run, said an official. READ MORE

Franz Kafka Letters, 120 Drawings Made Publicly Available Online for the First Time An unpublished collection of letters, manuscripts, and drawings by Franz Kafka are now available online via the Israel National Library, which recovered the documents after years of legal wrangling. Some 120 drawings and more than 200 letters to his friend Max Brod are among the archives now available for public viewing, the project's curator Stefan Litte told AFP. The documents exist thanks to Brod's decision to break a pact with his friend Kafka, the acclaimed Czech Jewish author of "The Trial” and "The Metamorphosis”, who as he suffered from tuberculosis asked his writings be destroyed. READ MORE

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