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Headlines: Taliban Takes Over Afghanistan; Ashraf Ghani Flees Kabul

Taliban Takes Over Afghanistan; Ashraf Ghani Flees Kabul

Two decades after they were removed by the US military, the Taliban marched into the country’s capital Kabul to take complete control of Afghanistan. After the incident, American-backed Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled the country. The Al Jazeera network broadcast showed live images of armed Taliban terrorists roaming in Afghanistan freely. After the Joe Biden-led US and NATO forces started departing from the country, the Taliban took advantage of the vacuum and swept through Afghanistan in a matter of weeks. On Sunday, the pentagon and state department released a joint statement stating that the USA will extend its presence at Kabul’s international airport over the next 48 hours to evacuate thousands of American citizens, locally employed staff and their families. Taking over the presidential palace, the terrorist group said it plans to declare a new ‘Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’ and wants to form an ‘open, inclusive Islamic government’. Meanwhile, members of the Afghan government are angry at Ghani for leaving the country so much so that the country’s official embassy account in India has called him a ‘traitor’. 

Covid-Bulletin: India Records 32,937 Cases; Recovery Rate At 97.48%

According to the latest data released by the Union Health Ministry, India has recorded 32,937 covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours. India’s active caseload currently stands at 3,81,947, which is the lowest in 145 days, constituting 1.18% of total covid-19 cases reported across the country. Meanwhile, the recoveries have surpassed the active covid-19 cases with 35,909 more patients recovering in the previous 24 hours, taking the cumulative total to 3,14,11,924 recoveries across the country. Currently, the weekly positivity rate stands at 2.01% and the daily positivity rate at 2.79%. As per the Indian Council of Medical Research, India has conducted 49.48 crore covid-19 tests so far. On the vaccination front, India has administered 54.58 crore covid-19 vaccine doses across the country. 

PM Modi To Launch INR 100 Lakh Crore Gati Shakti Initiative To Boost manufacturing Sector

In his Independence Day speech, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the central government is planning to launch a 100 lakh crore Gati Shakti initiative – a national infrastructure master plan. Addressing the country from the Red Fort, PM Modi said: “Gati Shakti will help local manufacturers turn globally competitive; also develop possibilities of new future economic zones. ₹100 lakh crore Gati Shakti initiative will bring employment opportunities for youth, help in holistic infrastructure growth,” “We will have to work together for manufacturing world-class products, using cutting-edge innovation and new-age technology,” added PM Modi. During the speech, PM Modi also said that several parts of the country, including the entire Himalayan region, the tribal area and the coastal belt, will become an extensive base for the development of India in the future. Adding that the northeast region of India will soon be connected with Bangladesh, Myanmar and South Asia, PM Modi said: “Very soon, the work of connecting all the state capitals of the northeast with rail services is going to be completed,” 

PM Modi Pays Tribute To Former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee On His Death Anniversary 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday paid tribute to former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee on his death anniversary. Along with PM Modi, President Ram Nath Kovind, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, BJP National President JP Nadda and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh paid floral tributes to Vajpayee at the Saidev Atal Samadhi in New Delhi. Remembering India’s former PM, Chief Minister of Delhi, Arvind Kejriwal tweeted: “Tributes to former Prime Minister Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji on his death anniversary,” Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma tweeted: “A towering statesman, an erudite parliamentarian, a gifted poet and an orator par excellence, Swargiya Atal Bihari Vajpayee Ji was one of India’s finest Prime Ministers who ushered in a new era of development. I bow in reverence to the ‘Ajatshatru’ on his death anniversary,” Atal Bihari Vajpayee served as the Prime Minister of India three times and was one of the founding members of the Bhartiya Janata Party. During Vajpayee’s tenure, India conducted its second nuclear bomb test Pokhran-II in 1998, and his wise economic policies paved the way for sustained growth of India’s development. Atal Bihari Vajpayee was also awarded with the Bharat Ratna in 2014, and his birth anniversary (25th December) is celebrated as ‘Good Governance Day.’ 

Classes 9th-12th Re-opens In Uttar Pradesh From Today 

After Uttar Pradesh saw a decline in active covid-19 cases, the state government has decided to re-open schools in states for classes 9-12 while adhering to covid-19 protocols. On 2nd August, the Yogi Adityanath-led government issued a mandate to re-open schools in the state with 50% attendance. The order read: “Intermediate schools in the state to re-open from 16th August with 50% capacity. Colleges and universities to re-open from 1st September. The state government gives instructions to begin the process of entrance for students in colleges/universities from 5th August,” 

PM Modi To Interact With The Indian Paralympic Team Today

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is all set to interact with India’s Tokyo Paralympic contingent Today. On Sunday, the Prime Minister Office (PMO) said that the virtual meet is scheduled for 11 am. The Indian Paralympic Team consist of 54 members, including Javelin player Devendra Jhajharia. The global games are set to begin on 5th September will just 5,000 spectators. In the last Paralympics, the country has won 2 gold, 1 silver, and 1 bronze medal. A statement from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) read: “Para-athletes from across nine sport disciplines will be heading to Tokyo to represent the nation. This is India’s biggest ever contingent to the Paralympic Games. Union Sports Minister will also be present during the interaction,” 

Pawandeep Rajan Takes The Indian Idol 12’s Trophy Home

Pawandeep Rajan has won season 12 of the singing reality show Indian Idol. The winner received a cash prize of INR 25 lakh, Maruti Suzuki Swift car and was also offered a recording contract by the music industry. This season was quite special as it marked a new era in the reality TV show. With over 40 acts and 200 songs, the finale episode of Indian Idol started at 12 pm on 15th August and continued till midnight and ended with declaring the winner of the season. The finale was joined by singers including Kumar Sanu, Javed Ali, rapper Mika Singh, Udit Narayan, Sadhana Sangam and Alka Yagnik. Apart from singers, Bollywood celebrities Sidharth Malhotra, Kiara Advani, Soniya Kapoor and Annu Kapoor also entertained the audience by performing different acts. Speaking about this season, Sony TV’s programming head Ashish Golwalkar said: “It is a pressure situation. You have to programme 12 hours straight, and so it means you have to shoot 3 weeks of content in one go. It is maddening for the editing team, music team, costume team and every other department. But it is also exciting. Like I said, it has never been done before. Maybe this will mark a new era in reality TV,”

Bigg Boss OTT: Karan Johar’s Vaar Leaves Divya Agarwal In Tears; Urfi Javed Evicted 

In the Weekend ka Vaar in Bigg Boss OTT, host Karan Johar lashed out at contestant Divya Agarwal and said: “Tell me, Divya ma’am, you don’t need to show why you are here. Yeh Bigg Boss ka ghar hai, this is no party. You all are all playing a game, let’s get that straight,” Apart from Divya, Karan Johar also said to Shamita Shetty that Divya is trying to break your connection, to which Shamita replied: “I really don’t care” and also said that Divya allegedly hid her real face and is very insecure and over the top competitive with her. Apart from this, contestant Urfi Javed was evicted from the show, who was earlier ditched by her connection Zeeshan Khan after Zeeshan joined hands with Divya Agarwal, saving her from the first nomination. 

Have You Seen Kareena Kapoor Khan’s Heartwarming Birthday Wish For Saif Ali Khan

It’s Bollywood celebrity Saif Ali Khan’s birthday today, and Bebo left no chance of expressing her feelings about her darling husband. In an Instagram post, Kareena wrote: “Happy birthday to the love of my life….To eternity and beyond with you is all I want.” The picture featured her, Saif and their children Taimur and Jeh. Recently, Kareena Kapoor Khan received a backlash for naming her son Jehangir to which Bebo replied: “We have two innocent children we are talking about. We are going to stay happy and positive, and that’s just the way I am going to look at life.” On the professional front, Kareena Kapoor Khan will produce Hansal Mehta’s next film along with Ekta Kapoor

Sports Minister Anurag Thakur Says That The Government Will Increase The Scope Of TOPS 

During a felicitation programme organized for the Indian athletes, the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) awarded Gold medalist Neeraj Chopra a cash prize of INR 75 lakhs. Silver Medalists Ravi Dahiya and Mirabai Chanu were awarded a cash prize of INR 50 lakh each, and bronze medalists PV Sindhu, Lovlina Borgohain and Bajrang Punia were awarded a cash prize of INR 25 lakh each. After the heroic performance of India at the Tokyo Olympics 2020, Sports Minister Anurag Thakur said that the government has decided to expand the size and scope of the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) and keep the 2024 and 2028 games in mind. The Sports Minister said: “I assure you we are going to increase TOPS so that more and more athletes can be benefitted,” This is the first time that IOA is offering cash incentives to Olympic medalists. 

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