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Jharkhand allows 100 pc attendance in govt offices, cinema halls to reopen at 50 pc seating capacity

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Ranchi (Jharkhand) [India], February 19 (ANI): The Jharkhand government has mandated 100 per cent attendance in all government offices and allowed schools to reopen for students of Classes 8, 9, and 11 from March 1 with COVID-19 protocols in place.
Attendance of students is not mandatory but they would need the permission of parents to attend classes. Institutes of higher learning and coaching institutes have also been allowed to reopen, according to the Jharkhand Chief Minister’s Office.
The state government further said that the ban on public processions will continue.
Gatherings have been permitted up to a maximum of 50 per cent of the hall capacity, while in open spaces 1000 people allowed to gather. Cinema halls have been allowed to reopen with 50 per cent seating capacity.
Jharkhand’s COVID-19 tally reached 1,19,477 on Thursday after the state reported 38 new cases.
As per State Health Department, the number of total recoveries has mounted to 1,17,926 with 37 fresh recoveries.
At present, there are only 467 active coronavirus cases in Jharkhand while the death toll stands at 1,084. (ANI)

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Batla House case convict Ariz Khan’s lawyer says he will move higher court against judgement

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By Sushil Batra
New Delhi [India], March 8 (ANI): Hours after the conviction of accused Ariz Khan by a Delhi court in the Batla House Encounter case, his lawyer MS Khan said he will challenge the judgment in a superior court.
“I am yet to go through the judgment being away from Delhi. However, I would add that the entire material was not free from doubt, the story of the prosecution has many holes but the court has delivered its verdict convicting my client and one has to bow to it. But I am going to challenge it in a superior court as I am hopeful that one day justice will prevail,” Khan told ANI.
A Delhi court on Monday convicted Ariz Khan, who was arrested in February 2018 in connection with the 2008 Batla House encounter case.
Additional Sessions Judge Sandeep Yadav convicted Ariz Khan under Section 186, Section 333, Section 353, Section 302, Section 307 and Section 174 A IPC and provision of arms act.
The court said that Khan and others had intentionally murdered Inspector Mohan Chand Sharma, an encounter expert, and caused hurt to Head Constable Balwant Singh and Rajbir Singh.
Khan is allegedly associated with the terror outfit Indian Mujahideen. He was arrested by the Special Cell of Delhi Police after a decade of allegedly being on the run.
According to Delhi Police, Khan was at the spot during the Batla encounter but managed to escape during the encounter on September 19, 2008, in Delhi’s Jamia Nagar, in which two Indian Mujahideen terrorists were killed and as many arrested.
Senior Public Prosecutor AT Ansari represented Delhi Police. (ANI)

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Punjab Govt to provide free travel for women across state

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Punjab [India], March 8, (ANI): Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh said that the Punjab government has brought a change in the state budget on this international women’s day, which allows travel-free services for women across the state on all Government buses.
“I am happy to share that Punjab Govt has decided to make travel free for women across the state in all Government buses. We have been persistent in our efforts to empower our women and we will continue doing the same. Happy InternationalWomensDay to everyone,” Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh tweeted.
The government will start eight new schemes aimed at empowering and protecting women on the occasion of International Women’s Day.
“The government will issue appointment letters to 2,047 women teachers and launch 181 Saanjh Shakti Helpline and Police Helpdesks,” he added.
Every year on March 8, this day is observed in order to celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women.
“Happy with the way our 5th Budget has maintained balance between Punjab’s present needs & the needs of our future generations. Farmers, Healthcare, Education, Women, Social Security & Development of State Infrastructure form the core pillars of the State Budget & our governance,” he said. (ANI)

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PM Modi will soon rename India after his name: Mamata Banerjee

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Kolkata (West Bengal) [India], March 8 (ANI): As the poll fever intensified ahead of the West Bengal Assembly elections and Trinamool Congress leaders joining the ranks of the Bharatiya Janata Party, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday targetted the Central leadership and said that “Prime Minister Narendra Modi will soon rename the country after his name.”
“He got his picture on the vaccine (certificates). It is not a COVID vaccine, it is a Modi vaccine. He has colleges in his name. stadiums in his name. And, now vaccine in his name. It is just a matter of time, he will soon rename India after his name,” Banerjee said while addressing the people of the state after completing her padyatra.
She further alleged that the top leadership of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) give false statements during poll campaigns in West Bengal.
“Amit Shah and PM Narendra Modi are two syndicate ministers who come to Bengal and speak canards and lies. I respect the chair of a Prime Minister but it is surprising to see a Prime Minister speaking lies,” stated Banerjee.
“They (BJP leaders) will come to Bengal only during elections. He is lecturing us on women’s safety. What is the situation of women in BJP-ruled states? What is the situation in Modi’s Gujarat?” she said.
The chief minister expressed greetings on the occasion of International Women’s Day.
“I wish happy International Women’s Day to every woman. This is the land of Matangini Hazra and Mother Teresa. Women are our pride. We celebrate this day as Naari Mukti Divas. We cannot tolerate atrocities on women,” added Banerjee.
On the occasion of International Women’s Day, Mamata Banerjee held a 4.5-km long march that started at College Square and concluded at Dharmatala in Kolkata.
Trinamool Congress and BJP are in loggerheads ahead of the Assembly polls in West Bengal. West Bengal Assembly elections will be held in eight phases starting from March 27 with the final round of voting taking place on April 29. The counting of votes will take place on May 2. (ANI)

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Uttarakhand CM meets BJP Chief Nadda in Delhi over political crisis

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New Delhi [India], March 8 (ANI): Amid speculations about the leadership change in Uttarakhand, Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat met Bharatiya Janata Party chief JP Nadda on Monday.
There are speculations about the leadership change in Uttarakhand as several ministers and around twenty MLAs are against the working style of Rawat, sources said.
However, Rawat declined to speak when asked about the political crisis in Uttarakhand.
According to sources, several MLAs and some ministers complained about the Chief Minister to the party leadership. Later, the BJP central high command sent Raman Singh as party observer for the emergency core group meeting, which was attended by Dushyant Gautam, general secretary in-charge of Uttarakhand BJP.
After the core group meeting of the party, Raman Singh and Dushyant Gautam submitted their report to the party high command. Consequently, Trivendra Singh Rawat was called to Delhi.
Interacting with the mediapersons here, Rawat said, “I congratulate all the women on International women’s day. Our women should empower themselves and should be socially active. We have passed the law in which women can now claim their right in their husband’s property and will be able to apply for the loan based on that in case they want to start their own business.”
He further applauded the service of Anganwadi and AASHA workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The Anganwadi and AASHA workers have worked selflessly in COVID-19 pandemic, so my government will provide them with Rs 10,000 each. We will provide Rs 15,000 to mahila samuh and mahila mangal dal (women welfare group). We have also launched a Ghasyari Kalyan Yojana to benefit the kins of women who die for unnatural reasons,” added Rawat.
(ANI)

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Tamil Nadu reports 556 new COVID-19 cases, three deaths

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Chennai (Tamil Nadu) [India], March 8 (ANI): Tamil Nadu reported 556 new COVID-19 cases, 532 recoveries and three deaths in the last 24 hours.
The total count of cases in the state has risen to 8,55,677 including 4,018 active cases and 8,39,138 recoveries.
The death toll has gone up to 12,521
India has reported a total of 1,12,29,398 cases, including 1,88,747 active cases and 1,08,82,798 recoveries.
With 99,205 active cases, Maharashtra continues to remain the most-affected state followed by Kerala with 41,162 active cases. (ANI)

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Fire breaks out multi-storey building in Kolkata

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Kolkata (West Bengal) [India], March 8 (ANI): A massive fire broke out in a multi-storey building near strand road in Kolkata on Monday.
The blaze broke out on the third floor of the building.
Eight fire tenders rushed to the spot to douse the blaze.
More details awaited. (ANI)

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