Ration card bearing Jesus Christ's photo sparks row in Andhra, govt links it to TDP

News Network
December 10,2019

Amravati, Dec 10: A ration card bearing the image of Jesus Christ which has surfaced on the internet sparked a row in Andhra Pradesh with social media users linking its origins to Andhra Pradesh.

The Andhra Pradesh government, however, refuted the claims and said that kin of a Telugu Desam Party (TDP) member did so to "promote propaganda".

In an official statement, the state government said: "Ration dealer husband, who is a TDP member from Vadlamuru village, had printed Jesus Christ's picture on the ration cards and intentionally promoted the propaganda."

The government said that the rational dealer's husband is a "die-hard TDP fan" and not a converted Christian.

"Previously, in 2016 the same person had printed Sai Baba's picture on the ration cards, Lord Balaji's photo in 2017 and 2018, and Jesus Christ picture in 2019," the government said.

The civil supplies department officials will take action on this issue of misconduct, it assured.

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With highest single-day spike of 40,425 cases, India's COVID-19 tally crosses 11 lakh mark

News Network
July 20,2020

New Delhi, Jul 20: India's COVID-19 case tally crossed the 11 lakh mark with the highest single-day spike of 40,425 new cases and 681 deaths reported in the last 24 hours, informed the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry on Monday.

Total cases in the country now stand at 11,18,043 while the death toll is 27,497.
The Health Ministry said the total number of cases includes 3,90,459 active cases and 7,00,087 patients have been cured/discharged/migrated.

Maharashtra remains the worst affected state with 3,10,455 cases reported until Sunday.
Meanwhile, as per the information provided by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), 1,40,47,908 samples have been tested for COVID-19 till July 19, of these 2,56,039 samples were tested yesterday.

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5 Rafale fighter jets land in Ambala

Agencies
July 29,2020

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Ambala, Jul 29: The five French Rafale fighter jets touched down at Haryana's Ambala after covering a distance of nearly 7,000 km to join the Indian Air Force.

The jets were given a customary water salute upon their arrival at the airbase, some 220-km from the India-Pakistan border.

The formal induction ceremony of the aircraft would be held later. The aircraft would move out soon to another operational base for operational sorties.

After taking off from France on Monday, the aircraft made their first stopover at a French base in the United Arab Emirates on their way to India and were refuelled by the French Air Force tanker aircraft somewhere around Greece or Israel over the sea before landing there.

The five were flown by pilots of the 17 Golden Arrows led by Commanding Officer Group Captain Harkirat Singh along with other pilots, Wing Commanders MK Singh, R Kataria, Sidhu and Arun.

The five Rafale fighter aircraft took off on Monday for India from an airbase in France. The weather in Ambala was cloudy with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers being forecasted.

India had signed a Rs 59,000-crore deal on September 23, 2016 for 36 Rafale jets from French aerospace major Dassault Aviation.

In view of Rafale fighter jets landing in the city on Wednesday, Section 144 is being imposed in four villages close to Ambala airbase. Munish Sehgal, DSP Traffic, Ambala, said the administration is on a high alert and the gathering of people on roofs and photography during landing has been strictly prohibited.

The five Rafale fighter jets had entered the Indian Airspace earlier in the day. "The Birds have entered the Indian airspace..Happy Landing in Ambala!" tweeted the Defence Minister's Office earlier on Wednesday.

The Defence Minister's Office further informed that the five Rafales were escorted by 02 SU30 MKIs as they enter the Indian airspace.

Here are the key Highlights of Rafale:

It's an Omni role aircraft.
4th Generation Fighter Jet.
It's a two-engine aircraft.
It's top speed is 2,222 Km/Hr.
It can go up to 50,000 Ft.
It's Rate of Climb is 60,000 Ft/Min.
It's Operational Range is 3,700 Km.
Ground Support.
In-depth Strike.
Anti-Ship Strike.

Reach and combat radius is 1600-1700 Kms.
Capable for Long Range standoff Mission.
Equipped with Air-to-Ground Missile System.

Specifically designed to take off from an extremely cold high altitude region.

It will also be fitted with the air-to-air beyond visual range interception combat and self-defence missile.

It can also carry the best long range air-to-land missile.

It has multi-directional radar system which can detect 40 targets at the same time in a range of over 100 Kms.

It has advance radar warning receiver to identify hostile tracking system a towed decoy system to thwart incoming missile attacks.

Rafale will ensure that our pilots will not have to cross the border to strike the target, that is about 600 Km in enemy territory.

It will get French industrial support for 50 years. 

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President Putin announces Russia's approval for world's first Covid-19 vaccine

Agencies
August 11,2020

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Moscow, Aug 11: President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that Russia had become the first country in the world to grant regulatory approval to a COVID-19 vaccine after less than two months of human testing, a move hailed by Moscow as evidence of its scientific prowess.

The development paves the way for the mass inoculation of the Russian population, even as the final stage of clinical trials to test safety and efficacy continue.

The speed at which Russia is moving to roll out its vaccine highlights its determination to win the global race for an effective product, but has stirred concerns that it may be putting national prestige before sound science and safety.

Speaking at a government meeting on state television, Putin said the vaccine, developed by Moscow's Gamaleya Institute, was safe and that it had even been administered to one of his daughters.

"I know that it works quite effectively, forms strong immunity, and I repeat, it has passed all the needed checks," said Putin.

He said he hoped the country would soon start mass producing the vaccine.

Its approval by the health ministry foreshadows the start of a larger trial involving thousands of participants, commonly known as a Phase III trial.

Such trials, which require a certain rate of participants catching the virus to observe the vaccine's effect, are normally considered essential precursors for a vaccine to receive regulatory approval.

Regulators around the world have insisted that the rush to develop COVID-19 vaccines will not compromise safety. But recent surveys show growing public distrust in governments' efforts to rapidly produce such a vaccine.

Russian health workers treating COVID-19 patients will be offered the chance of volunteering to be vaccinated soon after the vaccine's approval, a source told Reuters last month.

More than 100 possible vaccines are being developed around the world to try to stop the COVID-19 pandemic. At least four are in final Phase III human trials, according to WHO data.

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