Today's Big Stories
Encephalitis, Encounters, Policy and Polarisation: Yogi Adityanath’s Most Candid Interview
Halfway through his term as the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, firebrand BJP leader Yogi Adityanath sat down for an interview with News18 Network’s Group Editor-in-chief Rahul Joshi on the work done in the last two and half years, and his plans for the next two and half. In the exclusive interview, set in the Gorakhnath temple of Gorakhpur, Adityanath discussed a range of issues, including the recent controversy over making Hindi the unifying language in the country, the law and order situation in the state, his polarising remarks of ‘Bajrang Bali’ and ‘Green Virus’ during the Lok Sabha elections, the delays in the investigation of the Unnao rape case, and the Ram Mandir dispute, among other things. Read the excerpts here.
GST Council Headed by FM to Meet Today
The all-powerful GST (Goods and Services Tax) Council will hold a crucial meeting today to decide on tax moderation, keeping in mind the revenue position and the need to boost sagging economic growth. There have been demands pouring in from various sectors — from biscuits to automobiles and FMCG to hotels — to reduce tax rates. The argument propagated has been to boost the consumption and domestic demand by reducing GST rates further.
In Other News
Targeted attack: The prospect for a more prosperous Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh, following the abrogation of the Article 370 "cuts the ground under the feet of Pakistan", Indian Ambassador to the US Harsh Vardhan Shringla said. In an opinion piece in 'The New York Times', Shringla said Pakistan has a "vested interest in preventing prosperity in Jammu and Kashmir, and in the Ladakh area of Kashmir, because a weak economy fuels separatist sentiments in some quarters".
Down to bare necessity: Chidambaram on Thursday complained that he has not been given a pillow and chair in Tihar Jail where he has been lodged since September 5 in connection with INX media case. His judicial custody has been extended till October 3. Senior advocate Kapil Sibal also moved an application on behalf of Chidambaram seeking regular medical check-up and adequate supplementary diet during judicial custody.
Shedding sainthood: Former British premier David Cameron revealed in his memoirs that “saintly" former Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh, had confided in him about the prospect of military action against Pakistan in case of another Mumbai-like terrorist attack. “He was a saintly man, but he was robust on the threats India faced,” he said.
Clearing the air: Expressing his inability to understand the protest against the amended motor vehicle law, Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday asserted that the new provisions are aimed at curbing accidents and not earning revenue. His comments came against the backdrop of the strike by transporters, taxis and auto-rickshaws in the national capital on Thursday against the new law that provides for heavy penalties for traffic rule violations.
Making up for make-up: New damning images of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wearing blackface makeup emerged on Canadian television on Thursday, throwing his floundering re-election bid into further disarray. The footage depicts the Liberal leader in ripped jeans and a t-shirt, his arms up and dark makeup on his face. Late on Wednesday, Trudeau apologised for a photograph of him in brownface makeup at an "Arabian Nights"-themed party 18 years ago.
On Our Specials
Stirred-up beehive: Top politicians and IAS officers are those who may have fallen victim to a high-profile honeytrap gang in Madhya Pradesh, as authorities picked up five women and a man in connection with the case. Both the ruling Congress and the opposition BJP are pointing fingers at each other. A municipal corporation official approached authorities recently with the complaint that a woman befriended him and then shot videos and photographs of him in “compromising positions” and later allegedly started blackmailing him, demanding money. According to sources, one of the women was employed with the Congress social media cell.
Sounding the poll bugle in Maharashtra, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 19 said that the state was reeling under political instability before the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government came to power.