The Met department has issued a yellow alert for several districts in Rajasthan predicting heavy rain on Thursday after various places across the state recorded rainfall ranging from 10 mm to 50 mm in the last 24 hours. The yellow alert (watch and stay updated) has been issued for Alwar, Bharatpur, Dausa, Dholpur, Karauli, Bikaner and Hanumangarh. Telangana has also been severely affected by the rainfall and subsequent flooding.
ISRO launched India's largest Launch Vehicle Mark-III (LVM3) rocket with 36 satellites onboard from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh. The 43.5 metre tall rocket will deploy 36 satellites of the UK-based Network Access Associated Ltd (OneWeb) to Low Earth Orbit (LEO). OneWeb, which has Bharti Enterprises as a major investor, will complete the first generation of LEO constellation with its 18th launch. This is the sixth overall flight of LVM3 rocket, with five consecutive missions including the Chandrayaan-2. OneWeb indicated it will roll out global services in 2023.
Jammu and Kashmir will soon be home to the world's highest railway bridge over the Chenab river, standing at 1,178 ft, 35 ft higher than the Eiffel Tower. Ro Khanna has been attacked for supporting Rahul Gandhi, while a former royal press secretary claims the nickname "Shy Di" for Princess Diana is inaccurate. Shikhar Dhawan was dropped from Team India and awaits a comeback in the IPL, and Samantha Ruth Prabhu is set to star in the historical drama film Shakuntalam, releasing April 14.
Today, Congress will observe a day-long satyagraha in protest of Rahul Gandhi's disqualification from Lok Sabha after conviction in a 2019 defamation case. Rahul Gandhi has challenged the government on the Adani issue, while BJP has condemned his behaviour. Congress leaders Mallikarjun Kharge and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra will sit in the satyagraha at Raj Ghat, while all Pradesh Congress Committees have been asked to organise similar protests.
Jammu and Kashmir is set to open the world's highest railway bridge over the Chenab river, soaring above the Eiffel Tower in Paris by 35 metres. The arch bridge, part of the Rs 35,000 crore Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Railway Link (USBRL), is estimated at Rs 1,400 crore and has cleared all the necessary tests. Track lane work is ready for commissioning and two more tests will be held before completion in December 2023 or January 2024. The bridge can withstand winds up to 260 kmph and has a lifespan of 120 years.
Journalist Lalit Kumar Jha was abused and attacked by Khalistani supporters while covering their protest. He called 911 and was saved by Secret Service officers. The protestors threatened to vandalise the Indian Embassy and the US condemned the attack on the Consulate in San Francisco.
Indian-American politician Ro Khanna drew flak after condemning Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's suspension from Lok Sabha. He was reminded his grandfather supported Indira Gandhi during Emergency. He replied "attack me, don't attack India's freedom fighters". Rahul Gandhi was convicted for a 2019 defamation case. Congress and opposition took to the street against his disqualification.
The Centre has asked states to increase Covid-19 testing as per WHO guidelines and keep a close watch on causes of seasonal respiratory infections. It also said that rates of hospitalisation and death due to Covid-19 remain low. A two-day drill is planned on April 10 and 11 to check supplies of essential drugs, beds, medical equipment, and medical oxygen.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has filed a charge sheet against 14 people, including gangsters Satinder Singh alias Goldy Brar and Lawrence Bishnoi, for conspiring to assassinate Punjabi singer Sidhu Moosewala and being linked with Pakistan-backed Khalistani terror groups. The NIA has seized weapons, ammunition, digital devices, and other incriminating material, and has charge sheeted 26 accused in its larger probe.
Negotiations between wealthy nations and developing countries, such as India, over funding needed to combat the climate crisis revealed deep differences. India pushed for language on equity, differentiation between developed and developing countries, and public finance. The IPCC's synthesis report released on March 20 warned of irreversible impacts if global warming exceeds 1.5°C.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah has announced that due to an improvement in the security situation, the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) has been removed from several districts in Assam, Nagaland and Manipur. This decision follows the removal of AFSPA from a large number of districts in the north east on April 1, 2022, and has resulted in a reduction of militancy incidents by 74%, deaths of security personnel by 60% and civilians by 84%.
The Lok Sabha's Committee of Estimates has recommended the Home Ministry to induct young and fit people into the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) on the lines of Agnipath scheme, to strengthen the first response organisation. This follows the NDRF's role in the recent Turkey earthquake, and the possibility of recruiting NCC and NYKS cadets with the Agniveer Yojana. The ministry has previously said that NDRF personnel are only inducted from paramilitary forces.
Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh asked pro-Khalistan separatist preacher Amritpal Singh to surrender and cooperate with police in the investigation into nine FIRs against him. Punjab and Uttarakhand police have launched a massive crackdown and stepped up vigil respectively, while a Sikh couple was detained in Jammu and Kashmir for links with Amritpal's aide. Haryana home minister Anil Vij alleged delay by Punjab Police in reaching Shahbad.
Tejashwi Yadav, Bihar deputy chief minister, and Misa Bharti, daughter of Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad, were questioned by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate (ED) respectively in connection with the land-for-jobs scam. The scam allegedly took place while Lalu Prasad was the Union railways minister from 2004-09. Tejashwi Yadav and Misa Bharti were accused of selling land to Lalu's family at discounted rates and for appointing substitutes in Group D jobs in Central Railways in violation of norms. CBI and ED have claimed proceeds of crime worth ₹600 crore in the case.
India's first cable-stayed Anji Khad Bridge connecting Jammu and Kashmir is set to be completed by May 2023. The bridge, costing ₹400 crore, is similar to Mumbai's Bandra Worli Sea Link and will be the world's highest railway bridge, standing 331m above the Chenab River. The project is part of the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Line and will have a single rail line with a walkway for maintenance. The bridge is designed to withstand 213 kmph winds and is part of a 111 km rail network.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah credited Central Reserve Police Force personnel for wiping out hindrances in development of Maoist-hit areas and said the fight against Left-wing extremism is in the final stages of victory. He also praised the Enforcement Directorate and National Investigating Agency for stopping funding to LWE and modernisation of CRPF.