Will PM Modi pick young MPs in reshuffle, Ram Rahim feels afraid in jail, India among top nations to search for Blue Whale Challenge: Top stories
PM Narendra Modi may induct new faces in the cabinet, Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim kept screaming all the time in jail, a medical aspirant commits suicide after the Supreme Court dismissed a petition filed by her against NEET, and India among top nations to search for online suicide game Blue Whale Challenge. Here are the top stories to bring you up to date.Updated: Sep 02, 2017 07:39 IST
Cabinet reshuffle on Sunday: PM Modi may induct dozen new faces in major revamp before 2019 elections
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to induct about a dozen new faces in his council of ministers and re-allocate some important portfolios on Sunday. The new ministers will be sworn in by President Ram Nath Kovind at a ceremony in the Rashtrapati Bhawan, which will start at 10 am. Labour minister Bandaru Dattatreya resigned on Friday, adding to the list of ministers who have put in their papers in the past forty-eight hours. Among the names doing the rounds in BJP as likely contenders for ministerial posts are Vinay Sahasrabuddhe from Maharashtra, former Mumbai police commissioner Satypal Singh, Prahlad Joshi from Karnataka, Prabhat Jha from Madhya Pradesh, Ashwini Choubey from Bihar and Mahesh Giri from Delhi. Read the story here.
Cabinet reshuffle: Young MPs waiting in the wings. Will PM give them a chance?
When Prime Minister Narendra Modi rejigs his council of ministers, it could provide the last opportunity for several young turks of the ruling BJP to prove their administrative skills in the run-up to the general elections in 2019. Waiting in the wings are young leaders who have proved their acumen as parliamentarians or electoral giant-killers -- former BJP youth wing president Anurag Thakur, Nishikant Dubey, who has been impressive with forceful interventions in Parliament, Karnataka journalist-turned-politician Pratap Simha, son of Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje Dushyant Singh and Varun Gandhi. Other claimants for ministerial berths also include Maharashtra MP Poonam Mahajan, Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh’s son Abhishek Singh and Heena Gavit, a doctor who defeated Congress veteran Manikrao Gavit. Read the story here.
Ram Rahim screams, is afraid in jail, says man who spent 5 days with Dera chief
Rape convict Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim kept screaming all the time and did not eat anything when he was brought to Rohtak’s Sunariya jail on August 25, says a prisoner now out on bail. Dalit activist Swadesh Kirad who had been in the same jail for the past nine months and came out on bail on Wednesday, said he was locked in a high security cell adjacent to Ram Rahim’s and could hear him scream at night. “He would say things like ‘What is my fault, what have I done?’ He would cry in the night and request authorities to not lock him in the cell because he feels afraid,” Kirad told reporters. Read the story here.
New NEET admission policy kills medical dreams, Tamil Nadu girl commits suicide
Seventeen-year-old medical aspirant Anita S decided to end her struggle on Friday, a few months after the Supreme Court dismissed a petition filed by her and a few other students against the National Eligibility and Entrance Test (NEET). The Dalit girl from Ariyalur district, who believed that the newly launched entrance test was detrimental to the interests of students from rural areas, was found hanging from a ceiling fan at her home early that morning. The daughter of a daily wage worker, Anita and the other petitioners had argued before the Court that they be allowed to take admissions as per the TN government’s policy because students from rural schools will not be able to compete against their urban counterparts under the new test. Read the story here.
Kamal Haasan hints at party formation, says ‘saffron’ is not his colour
Acclaimed film actor Kamal Haasan on Friday hinted that he may form a political party but made it clear he won’t ally with “saffron” -- the Hindu Right. The 62-year-old superstar, who has acted in more than 220 films, made the announcement after meeting Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan here. And stating that he won’t align with any political party in Tamil Nadu, he told the media that he would be on his own politically. “My colour is definitely not saffron. That much I can say now,” Kamal Haasan said, in a clear reference to the BJP and RSS. Read the story here.
Sweden’s Saab ties up with Adani with an eye on IAF fighter order
Swedish aerospace firm Saab and Indian conglomerate Adani group announced a partnership on Friday to compete for an Indian Air Force programme to build fighter jets in the country. US defence giant Lockheed Martin has already stitched up an alliance with Tata Advanced Systems Limited for the same programme. HT had reported on August 29 that the IAF is likely to release a request for information for building the single-engine fighters in India within two months to scale up its combat capabilities. Read the story here.
Tejashwi queries Sushil Modi’s flats buy; he says explain your Rs 1,000-cr property
Former deputy chief minister Tejashwi Prasad Yadav, under attack from BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi, for coming into ownership of property the funding of which remained unexplained, on Friday,sought to reverse the gun at the man who succeeded him to the post of deputy CM, in late July. At a press conference here, the RJD leader , on Friday, charged Modi with falsely claiming that he had nothing to do with his brother RK Modi’s business interests. In this context, he released documents purporting to show how Modi had given power of attorney to his brother and nephews to purchase flats in New Delhi. Read the story here.
Blue Whale Challenge: India among top nations to search for online suicide game
The number of online search in India for the Blue Whale Challenge is among the highest globally, data from internet giant Google shows, raising a challenge for authorities to clamp down on the game linked to at least four suicides in the country. Google’s Trends reveals that more and more people from India are searching for the Blue Whale game in the past 12 months. While Manipur and Nagaland are among the top states to search for the “Blue Whale Challenge” keyword, Assam is on top for the “Blue Whale game challenge” search. City-wise data shows Kolkata is the top city in the world to search for the “blue whale challenge.” Read the story here.
Hurricane Harvey: Indian student’s condition remains critical
The condition of the Indian student who drowned in surging flood waters last week in Texas remained critical as the toll across the state went up to 46 in the wake of the devastating Hurricane Harvey. Search and rescue efforts continued for survivors as thousands of people remained cut off from their inundated homes in emergency shelters. Shalini, the Indian student, continues to be under treatment at the local hospital of Texas A&M university, with her family by her side. Read the story here.
Putin warns North Korea situation on verge of ‘large-scale conflict’
Russian President Vladimir Putin warned on Friday that the tense standoff between North Korea and the United States was on the verge of large-scale conflict and said it was a mistake to try to pressure Pyongyang over its nuclear missile programme. Putin, who is due to attend a summit of the BRICS nations in China next week, wrote in an article published on the Kremlin’s web site ahead of his trip that he favoured negotiations with North Korea instead. “It is essential to resolve the region’s problems through direct dialogue involving all sides without advancing any preconditions (for such talks),” Putin wrote. Read the story here.
Paris Saint-Germain face UEFA probe after Neymar, Kylian Mbappe transfers
French club Paris St Germain have been placed under investigation by UEFA to see if their recent transfer spending spree has broken the break-even rules of European soccer’s ruling body known as Financial Fair Play (FFP). The Ligue 1 club signed French teenager Kylian Mbappe, one of Europe’s most exciting talents, on Thursday in a deal worth 180 million euros ($214 million) to highlight their astonishing financial muscle. The Qatari-owned club last month bought Brazil forward Neymar from Barcelona for 222 million euros, more than double the previous highest price paid for a player. They spent more than any other club in a single transfer window. Read the story here.