01. PM Modi To Visit Poll-Bound Assam Again On Feb 22
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit poll-bound Assam again on February 22. The Prime Minister will address two rallies in Dhemaji and Majuli districts during his visit. This will be the third visit of Modi ahead of the assembly polls. “PM Modi will address two rallies that will be held at Silapathar and Majuli. These programmes will be physically and virtually addressed. It is yet to be finalised which programme will be virtually addressed,” said Assam Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. On January 23, PM Modi had visited Sivasagar and distributed land patta documents to 1.06 lakh landless indigenous people of the state.
02. Mizoram: Assam Rifles Seizes Tortoises, Reptiles
The Assam Rifles has seized some tortoises, reptiles, exotic seeds and apprehended one person in Mizoram’s Champhai district, a statement issued by the paramilitary force said. A joint team of Assam Rifles and Customs Department seized 29 leopard tortoises, 38 red-footed tortoises, 17 yellow, orange, green iguana, 3 bearded dragon, 3 albino iguana, exotic seeds and fertilizer in general area of Friendship Bridge along the Tyao River of the district on Thursday, it said. The apprehended person along with the seized items was handed over to Customs Department for further legal proceedings, the statement said.
03. Assam: AASU Stages Protest Over Price Rise
The All Guwahati Students’ Union has staged a protest at Dighalipukhuri against the price rise of essential commodities and fuel. The students’ organization has observed the ‘Bikhov’ programme all over the state. The district committees of the students’ organization demanded to control the prices of essential commodities, LPG cylinders and petrol and diesel prices. The Bokakhat anchalik students’ union has staged a protest saying that the BJP government has hiked the prices of all essential commodities and played drama by distributing free rice to the people. The students’ body also criticized the food and civil supplies department and threatened the government that they will give a relevant answer in the election.
04. Cachar: 2 Killed, 13 Injured In Road Accident
In a tragic road accident, two passengers were killed while 13 others were injured at Salchapra, Cachar on Friday. According to sources, an auto-rickshaw and a traveler had a head-on collision. Two passengers of an auto-rickshaw were killed on the spot. The one deceased has been identified as Ashit Das and the other is yet to be identified. Thirteen critically injured were rushed to the Silchar hospital for treatment by the local residents. An investigation is underway.
05. PDCK Along With Six Other Proscribed Groups To Lay Down Arms
All the leaders of the People’s Democratic Council of Karbi Longri (PDCK), born by the Ingti Kathar Songbijit returned to the mainstream on Friday, police said. The agreement with PDCK will be signed on February 25 in Karbi Anglong, the day when Union Home Minister Amit Shah will arrive in the district. The six other proscribed groups will lay down their arms in the presence of the Cabinet Minister. The government has kept all the leaders of the organization, including Songbijit, in the safest place. They have surrendered all their weapons to the police. “There will be no more militant group in Karbi Anglong as the last group has surrendered,” police said.
06. The Two OIL Employees Will Be Executed On Feb 22: ULFA-(I)
In a recent development, the United Liberation Front of Asom-Independent (ULFA-I), through an official statement on Friday has mailed a statement regarding two kidnapped oil employess that they will be punished on Monday as the last dedline given by the militant group has expired. On January 27, ULFA through an official statement warned that the employess will be executed after February 16 if his employer does not take any action for his release. This is resulting of not taking the matter seriously by the Quippo Oil and Gas Infrastructure Limited.
07. Toolkit Case: Delhi HC Prohibits Media From Broadcasting Probe Details
The Delhi High Court on Friday asked the media to stop broadcasting probe material relating to the toolkit case and asked the police to strictly abide by its stand that it has not leaked nor intends to leak probe details. The HC said certain media coverage of investigation in the FIR against climate activist Disha Ravi for her alleged involvement in sharing a toolkit backing farmers’ protest, indicates “sensationalism and prejudicial reporting”, but declined to order the removal of any such content at this stage, PTI reported. Justice Prathiba M Singh said the interim plea for removal of such news content and tweets by Delhi Police would be considered at a later stage, reported Zee News. The court, however, asked media houses to ensure that no leaked investigation material is broadcast as it could affect the probe and directed Delhi Police to abide by its stand, on affidavit, that it has not leaked nor intends to leak any probe details to the press.
08. Terrorists Open Fire At Cops In Srinagar, 2 Killed
In a shocking incident, a group of terrorists attacked Police officials in Barzulla area of Srinagar in Kashmir on Friday in which two police personnel died after suffering bullet injuries. The terrorists shot the two policemen from close range, a police official said. The policemen were taken to a hospital where both of them succumbed to their injuries, PTI reported police saying. Police personnel Sargent CT Mohammad Yousuf and Ct Suhail Ahmad succumbed to their injuries. They identified the slain policeman as constable Sohail. Security forces have launched an operation to track down the assailants, the official said. Chief Minister Omar Abdulla said “Two police personnel have reportedly been killed in an attack in Srinagar today. I condemn this act of militant violence & send my condolences to the families of these brave men.”
09. Budgam: One Policeman Killed, Another Injured In Encounter
One police personnel SPO Mohammad Altaf has lost his life and Manzoor Ahmad was injured in an ongoing operation in Budgam. Three terrorists were neutralized in the operation. “Three unidentified terrorists killed, incriminating materials including arms and ammunition recovered; Search underway,” Kashmir Zone Police said, news agencies reported. It is believed that terrorists are likely to be foreign nationals and not local recruits. “All three terrorists of LeT killed in Shopian encounter,” Vijay Kumar, IGP Kashmir confirmed. According to a report of Times Now, the encounter began at Beerwah area of Budgam at about 1.30 am on Friday. “Police and security forces are on the job. Further details shall follow,” said Kashmir Zone Police.
10. Uttarakhand Disaster: 62 Bodies Recovered So Far, Rescue Ops Underway
The death toll in the glacial disaster in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district rose to 62 on Friday as one more body has been recovered from the flood-hit area. The search and rescue operations continued for the 13th day at the NTPC’s Tapovan-Vishnugad hydel project site. The body was recovered late Thursday night from the banks of the Alaknanda at Helang between Joshimath and Pipalkoti, said Chamoli district police. With this recovery, the toll in the February 7 disaster has risen to 62 while 143 people are still missing, they said. The number of bodies recovered from the intake Adit tunnel of Tapovan-Vishnugad hydel project, where a massive search operation is underway ever since the tragedy struck, still stands at 13.
11. Amit Shah Summoned By Bengal Court In Defamation Case
Union Home Minister Amit Shah was summoned by a designated MP/MLA court in West Bengal on Monday (February 22) in connection with a defamation case filed by Trinamool Congress MP Abhishek Banerjee. The special judge of the court directed the Home Minister to appear either personally or with a lawyer on that very day at 10am. He reiterated that Shah’s attendance is necessary to answer to a charge of defamation under section 500 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). According to the complaint, Abhishek Banerjee, who is the nephew of Mamata Banerjee, claimed that Shah had made certain defamatory statements against him on August 11, 2018 during a BJP rally in Kolkata.
12. India’s Next Mars Mission To Be An Orbiter
In the early hours of Friday, NASA’s Perseverance rover survived a nail-biting landing phase to touch down gently on the surface of Mars after seven months in space, ISRO’s next mission to the Red Planet is likely to be an orbiter. Perseverance, the biggest and the most advanced rover ever sent by NASA, made its landing at Jezero Crater. After its successful Mars Orbiter Mission, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) called for “Announcement of Opportunities” on Mars Orbiter Mission-2. “It is now planned to have the next orbiter mission around Mars for a future launch opportunity,” according to the Announcement of Opportunities. But there are other major projects that are lined up. After the Mars Orbiter Mission’s success, ISRO also decided to explore Venus.
13. Kolkata: BJP Woman Leader Arrested With Cocaine
West Bengal BJP youth-wing leader Pamela Goswami was arrested by police after she was caught in possession of cocaine in Kolkata’s New Alipore area on Friday. As per reports, Goswami was with a friend, identified as Prabir Kumar Dey. They were apprehended while they were in her car with around 100gms of cocaine found in her handbag and other parts of the car. The sleuths of Kolkata police arrested Goswami based on specific inputs when she was parking her vehicle in New Alipore. “She was involved in drug trafficking for quite some time. Today, we got information that she along with her supplier Prabir was reaching the spot to hand over the drugs to the purchasers,” an officer said.
14. Greta Thunberg Tweets On “Human Rights” With #StandWithDishaRavi
Five days after 22-year-old Disha Ravi’s arrest, Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg has spoken out in support of Disha on Twitter who was jailed for alleged sedition and other charges for editing a “toolkit” that the police claim was used to conspire against the country over farmers’ protest. “Freedom of speech and the right to peaceful protest and assembly are non-negotiable human rights. These must be a fundamental part of any democracy. #StandWithDishaRavi” Thunberg tweeted, retweeting a thread posted by Fridays for Future (FFF), a group founded by Thunberg in August 2018, on Disha’s arrest. According to Delhi police, two other individuals Nikita Jacob and Shantanu Muluk edited the “toolkit” along with Disha to plan how the farmers’ protest should be carried out.
15. Chinese Media Releases Video Of Galwan Valley Clash
A Chinese state media posted a video of last year’s Galwan Valley clash on Twitter where hundreds of Indian and Chinese soldiers are seen confronting each other. This come just after China officially acknowledged it also suffered casualties in the violent faceoff, and named four officers and soldiers who died in the border clash. India however said over 30 Chinese soldiers were killed. In a tweet by the Chinese state media analyst, Shen Shiwei, alleged that Indian troops “trespassed into Chinese territory”.