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Telangana CM compares protestors with dogs; Opposition seeks apology

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Nalgonda (Telangana) [India], February 11 (ANI): Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao compared a group of protestors at a public event to ‘dogs’ on Wednesday. The comment caused an uproar with the opposition parties who have demanded an apology from the TRS leader.
While addressing a public gathering, after laying the foundation stone of a government scheme in the Nagarjun Sagar area of the Nalgonda district, a group of people, including some women, wanted to give a representation to the Chief Minister and started to protest.
Responding to the disturbance, the CM said, “Now that you have given the memo, leave from here. If you want to stay, please remain calm. No one will be distributed by your stupid acts, you will be beaten up unnecessarily. We have seen many people, amma, there are a lot of dogs like you. Leave from here.”
Meanwhile, attacking the Chief Minister over the comments, Manickam Tagore, Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee incharge, demanded an apology from the senior leader.
“Telangana CM calls women at Nagarjuna Sagar public meeting dogs. Don’t forget that this is a democracy and the women standing there are the reason you sit in that position. They are our bosses. Apologise, Chandrashekar,” Tagore said.
Spokesperson of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Krishna Saagar Rao, meanwhile, referred to the comment as an insult to Hindus and the BJP.
“KCR has insulted Yadavs (Gokasulu) by comparing them with demons (Rakasulu) in his public rally. He claims that he has dealt with and defeated Rakasulu (Demons), and dealing with Gokasulu (those who herd cows) is no big deal. He made these statements while he was verbally attacking BJP, which establishes that he was making this statement is a direct reference to Hindus and especially Yadavs,” the BJP spokesperson alleged.
He further demanded an apology from the Chief Minister for his ‘unwarranted insult’.
“Even if he said it in the flow of his speech, it was inappropriate. The BJP is surprised that CM KCR could speak with such impunity, especially when Nagarjuna Sagar has a huge Yadav electorate. We strongly condemn this disrespectful comparison and demand an apology for this unwarranted insult,” he said.
“KCR should take lessons in public speaking, especially for the use of socially acceptable vocabulary while addressing party campaigns,” he added. (ANI)

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Sex tape case: 6 Karnataka ministers move court to restrain media

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Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], March 6 (ANI): A total of six ministers in the B S Yediyurappa government on Friday moved a Bengaluru court seeking a stay against media outlets from publishing or broadcasting anything defamatory against them.
The ministers include B Basavaraj, Dr K Sudhakar, BC Patil, Shivram Hebbar, H T Somashekar and K C Narayana Gowda moved a city court moved the Bengaluru court and demanded the media to stop broadcasting/printing/publishing any defamatory or unauthenticated content about them.
The six Karnataka ministers have moved to Civil Court here in connection with a sex tape case allegedly involving Ramesh Jarkiholi, who recently resigned as minister.
The six ministers are among the 17 MLAs who had rebelled and led to the fall of the Congress-JD(S) coalition government in July 2019, which paved the way for the BJP to come to power.
He was reacting to the recent allegation of sexual harassment against former Karnataka Major and Medium Water Resources Minister Jarkiholi by social activist Dinesh Kallahalli on March 2. Jarakiholi resigned within 24 hours of the release of a purported sex tape.
There was an uproar following Jarkiholi’s resignation with former Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy on Friday stating that persons who claimed to be in possession of obscene CDs and who were using them to blackmail politicians should be arrested. “These blackmailers” are a threat to the society, the JD(S) leader said.
Refusing to take any names, the JD(S) leader alleged that the entire episode took place in the past two to three months and many high profile people were involved in the case.
“It is the responsibility of the government to get to the bottom of the case and bring out the truth,” Kumaraswamy urged the Karnataka government. (ANI)

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Eminent Shia cleric appeals to people to get COVID-19 vaccination

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Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh) [India], March 6 (ANI): Eminent Shia cleric Maulana Kalbe Jawad on Friday sought to dispel rumours and doubts about the Covid-19 vaccine among the Muslim community and appealed to people to get inoculated.
“When the many senior leaders of the country including Prime Minister, Defence Minister and Home Minister have taken the Made in India vaccine for coronavirus, we should also get our elders and needy people vaccinated against the virus,” the cleric told ANI.
After offering special prayers on Friday, he made an appeal to people not to heed any rumours about the vaccine and said that even he is waiting for his turn to get the Covid-19 vaccine.
Recently Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and many other senior leaders of the country have received the first doses of the vaccine during the nationwide vaccination drive.
Appealing to people to take the vaccine, PM tweeted, “I appeal to all those who are eligible to take the vaccine. Together, let us make India COVID-19 free!”
PM Modi flagged-off the first phase of the pan-India rollout of the Covid-19 vaccination drive on January 16, 2021. (ANI)

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Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu gets Covid vaccine dose

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Mohali (Punjab) [India], March 6 (ANI): Punjab Health and Family Welfare minister Balbir Singh Sidhu got his first Covid vaccine shot at a district hospital in Mohali on Friday.
After receiving the jab, the minister said he felt fit and fine and urged people to come forward and receive the vaccination and not pay heed to rumours.
“I feel fit and fine and people must come forward for the vaccination without giving any attention to rumors,” the Health Minister said after taking his shot yesterday.
Sidhu also said that the vaccine is safe and so far no adverse effect of vaccination has been reported from anywhere.
Lauding the efforts of Health care workers and front-line workers for working tirelessly in curbing the spread of the coronavirus, he said that even though the vaccine is being given the world over, caution is still needed.
“People should cover their faces with masks while moving out, and keep the necessary distance from each other. It is also important to wash hands frequently with soap and water,” he said. (ANI)

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Chennai-based company launches app to educate children on healthy food choices

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Chennai (Tamil Nadu) [India], March 6 (ANI): With rising numbers of obese and overweight children becoming a concern in India, a Chennai-based company has launched a pediatric dietary mobile game app to educate children on healthy food choices.
“We have been working on this mobile application for the past 11 years. We decided to engage children in a fun manner in this important topic,” said Bhargav Shri Prakash, founder of FriendsLearn, which has developed the mobile app.
The company which has an R&D office in San Francisco recently reported results from a trial that showed that it’s fooya! app was able to induce healthy food and lifestyle habits among a group of 104 children aged 10 to 11.
Shri Prakash said he hit up on the idea after he became a parent and saw the food habits of his children were influenced by advertisements. “I noticed that they are making decisions about food which is not in the best interest of their health,” he said.

“We are teaching children about how to avoid processed food. We are doing it with our neuroscience approach,” Shriprakash said, adding that “we need to engage children in a fun way about the very important topic without them feeling bored.”
He further said that after eleven years working with John Hopkins University, and several other universities, his company reached a milestone that nobody was able to achieve.
“We have published our findings in a prestigious medical journal which shows evidence that children can become healthy by playing with this application,” says FriendsLearn company’s founder and chief executive Bhargav.
The clinical study, published in the journal JMIR mHealth and uHealth, showed that just 20 minutes of gaming time a week had a strong positive impact on children’s food choices when polled immediately following the game.
In fooya!, an avatar fights against robots that represent unhealthy/bad foods, with the aim of maintaining a good body shape for the avatar and earning enough coins to win the level and unlock the next stage. Avatars perform better if they eat healthy foods and move a lot, and are slower and heavier as they consume more calories.
Arathi, mother of a daughter who used the FriendsLearn mobile application said: “As a parent, we have to care about children’s health and the Fooya game is very useful for them. I think this is the best game for kids’ healthcare. I am so happy that my daughter is playing it.” (ANI)

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Union Minister Jitendra Singh mocks Priyanka Gandhi over plucking tea leaves in Assam during off-season

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By Aiman Khan
New Delhi [India], March 6 (ANI): Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and Union Minister for Development of North Eastern Region, Jitendra Singh on Friday ridiculed Congress general secretary for Uttar Pradesh stating that her recent visit to poll-bound Assam looked more like a film shoot as she plucked leaves at a tea estate there in the off-season.
“Priyanka Gandhi is choosing tea leaves in the off-season. It seems as if a film is being shot,” the BJP leader told ANI here on Friday. Recently, Gandhi had visited the tea gardens in Assam and got photographed while plucking tea leaves with a basket on her head.
The BJP leader said that people in the state have not forgotten the violence and the frequent strikes during the tenure of the Congress. “So the BJP government will be formed here for the second time.”

“There was news of violence, strike in Assam under Congress rule. Today, the children of the new generation have forgotten that there was such an atmosphere at that time. This became possible due to the personal interest of Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” the union minister said.
Targetting the Congress party, the minister said: “The BJP works through a process, but in Congress, the candidate’s name is decided in the kitchen.”
“We have a specific slogan that our alliance will have more than 100 seats. I am confident that along with our alliance partner –Asom Gana Parishad (AGP), United People’s Party Liberal (UPPL), together will fulfill this promise and carry forward the work of development in the state,” he added.
The BJP leader also said that Congress has no leader in Assam now after Tarun Gogoi.
In the last assembly election in 2016, the BJP scripted history and formed the government for the first time in Assam ending Congress’ 15-year rule led by former chief minister Tarun Gogoi.
Meanwhile, on Friday BJP declared names of candidates for 70 seats ahead of Assembly elections in Assam.
“We are declaring the names of candidates on 70 seats as of now, out of the 126 seats in Assam Assembly. We are giving 26 seats to AGP and eight seats to UPPL,” said party National General Secretary, Arun Singh.
The term of the 14th legislative assembly of Assam is up to 31 May 2021. The Assembly elections for 126 seats will be held in three phases starting from March 27. (ANI)

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India on track to achieving climate goals: PM Modi

‘Indians are leaders in caring for environment,’ says the Prime Minister after receiving CERAWeek Global Energy and Environment Leadership Award.

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NEW DELHI: While receiving the prestigious CERAWeek Global Energy and Environment Leadership Award on Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the country is on track to achieving its climate goals well before the target date as it switches over to energy-efficient mediums and uses waste to generate energy.

Speaking after accepting the award for his commitment to energy sustainability and the environment, PM Modi said that climate change and calamity are major challenges facing the world. Both are interlinked, and one way to fight them is through policies, laws, rules and orders, and the other is bringing behavioural change, he said, listing measures taken by his government for sustainable energy usage.

While the target of mixing 20 per cent ethanol has been advanced to 2025, 5,000 compressed bio-gas plants will be set up to turn municipal and agriculture waste into energy, the PM said. While switch over to energy-efficient LED bulbs has helped save 38 million tonnes of carbon emission, modern techniques of irrigation as well as reducing the use of pesticides with greater awareness of improving soil health has greatly helped, he added. The share of non-fossil sources in India’s installed capacity of electricity has grown to 38%.

India has maintained that it is not a polluter and cause of climate change and has voluntarily committed to reducing greenhouse gas emission intensity of its GDP by 33-35 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.

On behavioural changes, Modi cited examples such as people embracing LED bulbs, voluntarily giving up LPG subsidy, increased cooking gas coverage and affordable transportation initiatives.

The Prime Minister noted that over the last seven years, India’s forest cover has grown significantly, the population of lions, tigers, leopards and waterfowls has grown. These, he said, are great indicators of positive behavioural changes.

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