Morning Digest | BJP weighs its options in Bihar, MLAs to meet today; Indian warship contains fire onboard missile-hit cargo vessel in Gulf of Aden, and more

Leader of Opposition in Bihar Assembly Vijay Kumar Sinha leaves the party office after a meeting, in Patna on January 27, 2024.
| Photo Credit: PTI

BJP weighs its options in Bihar; MLAs to meet on January 28

With fast paced developments taking place in Bihar politics amid growing buzz that Chief Minister Nitish Kumar may resign from his post on Sunday to join hands again with the BJP to form the NDA government in the State, BJP leaders and legislators met twice on Saturday to end on a parting note that they would meet again on Sunday morning to discuss “certain things” with the upcoming ruling partner Janata Dal (United).

India, France agree on surveillance ties

India and France have agreed to intensify their cooperation in the Southwest Indian Ocean, building on the “joint surveillance missions” carried out from French La Reunion in 2020 and 2022 while the two countries welcomed the progress in bilateral dialogue and identification of specific opportunities for using India “as a base” for the manufacture and export of defence equipment for friendly countries in the region, the joint statement issued at the end of French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit on the bilateral talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi said.

Gyanvapi mosque case raises a challenge to the Places of Worship Act

Calls to hand over the Gyanvapi mosque to the Hindus have come even after appeals by the Anjuman Intazamia Masjid in the Supreme Court to protect the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act of 1991 from becoming a dead letter.

Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav says alliance with Congress ‘off to good start’ in U.P., offers 11 Lok Sabha seats 

Offering 11 out of the 80 Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh to the Congress, Samajwadi Party (SP) president and former U.P. Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, on Saturday said that their “alliance” is off to a good start in the State.

RJD exudes confidence, leaders say ‘game is not over yet’ in Bihar

Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) legislators on January 27 authorised their chief Lalu Prasad Yadav to take a final call amid the buzz that Chief Minister Nitish Kumar-led JD (U) might ditch his Mahagathbandhan partners to form a government with its earlier ally BJP.

Houthi militants attack British oil tanker in Gulf of Aden, Indian Navy contains fire

A British oil tanker, MV Marlin Luanda, was hit by an anti-ship ballistic missile launched by the Iranian-backed Houthi militants in the Gulf of Aden on January 26 night, the US Central Command (CENTCOM) said.

Viksit Bharat Sankalp Yatra event is politics galore

The Viksit Bharat Sankalp Yatra (VBSY), a nationwide campaign initiated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 15, 2023, has seen participation of over 18 crore people in 782 districts across India in the two and half months following its inception. The yatra purportedly intends to raise awareness and achieve saturation of government schemes. However, many bureaucrats, uncomfortable with the political nature of the event, have raised concerns regarding the use of a State funded initiative by the BJP to seek votes.

Visitors to Ayodhya will soon experience Ramayana through 3-D technology

After the consecration of the Ram Temple the focus has now shifted to the making of a museum at Ayodhya which will let visitors get a live experience of the epic ‘Ramayana’ through immersive 3D technology.

Forest rights concerns could influence electoral results in nearly a third of constituencies, says study

The electoral outcome in nearly three in ten of India’s Parliamentary constituencies could be influenced by issues surrounding the implementation of the Forest Rights Act, says an analysis by independent researchers.

Ex-Pakistan PM Imran Khan, party erased from election campaign

Pakistani cricketing legend turned world leader Imran Khan is wildly popular in his constituency and ancestral homeland of Mianwali, but the political posters that line the streets do not bear his face and flags do not fly his colours.

China, U.S. say talks in Bangkok ‘candid, substantive’

China and the United States said on January 27 that top diplomat Wang Yi and U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan held “candid, substantive” talks in Thailand’s capital Bangkok, with the issue of Taiwan central after recent elections there. The two-day talks also addressed the topics of the Middle East, Ukraine, North Korea, the South China Sea and other international issues, both sides said.

Lok Sabha polls | As TMC decides to go solo, INDIA bloc partners eye minority votes

With Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress deciding to go alone in the Lok Sabha poll in West Bengal, the stage seems to be set for a triangular contest in the State amid a clamour for minority votes. According to analysts, the minority votes will turn crucial as the BJP will try to consolidate its vote base among Hindus banking on a slew of nationalistic issues and the inauguration of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya. They feel that the Congress and the Left may turn out to be a major concern for the TMC as the BJP is trying to consolidate in north and south-west Bengal. In central parts of the State, in districts of Malda and Murshidabad, the India bloc partners may try to win over the minority votes.

Time has treated Bopanna with a tenderness that defies reason and logic

Sporting excellence in the fifth decade of one’s life is not commonplace. It’s a period when age, along with physical frailties, makes the end of the career feel nigh, forces athletes to reflect and be nostalgic about the good old past, and think about passing on the lessons thus learnt to future generations. Time, however, has treated Bopanna with a tenderness that defies reason and logic. He has finished semi-finalist or better in men’s doubles in four of the last seven Slams he has entered. In 2023, he competed at all four Majors, all nine ATP Masters 1000s, a bunch of ATP 500s and 250s, and in Davis Cup for India.

During a launch, we manage the most complex activities with utmost calm, in an organised and disciplined manner: ISRO chief

Think of a typical day involving a rocket launch, and one is sure to imagine a control room where chaos reigns supreme, and the people involved in the launch, moving about frenziedly. Somnath S, chairman, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), debunked this myth, at The Hindu Lit Fest’s session ‘Transformative Leadership in ISRO: My Experience’, as he revealed, “During a launch, everyone in the main centre is at ease; they manage the most complex activities with the utmost calm, in an organised and disciplined manner.”

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