FPJ Evening Brief
FPJ Evening Brief

Here are the top 5 news updates of January 21, 2021:

1. Mumbai: Indian cricketers granted exemption from institutional quarantine

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has relaxed its stringent institutional quarantine norms for Mumbai-bound cricketers returning from Australia via Dubai after winning an historic Test series Down Under. After a new coronavirus strain was found in the United Kingdom, the Mumbai civic body has set very strict institutional quarantine norms for those returning to the city from UK, Europe, South Africa and Gulf countries.

However, the cricketers have been granted "exception” from the mandatory 14-day quarantine rule, which includes first seven days quarantine in a hotel or institution. After a mandatory 7-day institutional quarantine, the returnee undergoes a COVID-19 test and can head home only after testing negative to spend remaining seven days under home quarantine. A senior BMC official said, “They have come from Australia, just transiting through Dubai. Hence this has been considered as a special case and were granted exemption from hotel-institution quarantine."

2. Sensex touches all-time high of 50,000; creates history

The much-anticipated moment of the Indian stock market for the past few weeks arrived today as the BSE Sensex crossed the 50,000 mark for the first time in its history. The achievement gains significance as it comes on the back of bull-run despite the pandemic and the eventual economic slowdown.

The Sensex managed a near two-fold growth within a period of 10 months since it hit a decade low of 25,638.9 points on March 24, 2020, amid the initial impact of the pandemic globally. The surge in the markets was largely fuelled by the foreign institutional investors (FII) and their inflow was recorded at all-time high levels. India received around $22.5 billion or Rs 1.7 lakh crore in equities in 2020.

3. Mumbai: HC dismisses Sonu Sood's petition challenging BMC notice on illegal construction at his residence

The Bombay High Court today dismissed an appeal and an interim application filed by Bollywood actor Sonu Sood against a BMC notice over alleged illegal construction carried out by him at his residential building in Juhu area of Mumbai. Justice Prithviraj Chavan, while dismissing the actor's appeal and application, said, "Law helps only those who are diligent."

Sood's lawyer Amogh Singh sought a time of 10 weeks to comply with the notice issued by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) in October last year, and requested the HC to direct the civic body to not initiate demolition action. The court, however, refused and said the actor had ample opportunity in the past and if required, he could approach the civic body. "The ball is now in the office of the BMC...you (Sood) may approach them," Justice Chavan said. "You (Sood) are too late. You had ample opportunity," the judge added.

4. 'Illegal, but govt ensuring construction': Rahul Gandhi targets Centre, Adani over Kattupalli port project

Congress MP Rahul Gandhi today targeted the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government for allowing the construction of a port on Kattupalli Barrier island despite opposition. The Adani group had acquired 97 per cent stake in the Kattupalli port (owned by Marine Infrastructure Developer Private Limited) from Larsen and Toubro for Rs 1,950 crore in 2018 and now plans to expand it further at a cost of over Rs 53,000 crore.

Opposition parties in Tamil Nadu have opposed the expansion project, besides environmentalists, demanding that it should be scrapped due to long-term impact on the environment and the city residents. Slamming the Modi government, the Wayanad MP said the port on Kattupalli Barrier island is illegal but Modi Govt is ensuring its construction. The handover of our country to his crony capitalist friends continues, he added.

5. AI-enabled cameras to catch stalkers in Uttar Pradesh's Lucknow

The Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh has given a nod for the installation of Artificial Intelligence-enabled smart cameras at places prone to stalking and eve-teasing of girls and women for their safety. The AI-enabled cameras will click pictures of victims and send an alert to the nearest police station without anyone knowing about it to catch the stalkers in a jiffy to control growing crime against the women.

The Lucknow Police Commissioner DK Thakur disclosed this during a workshop on “Safe City” at Lucknow University. Thakur said that the Lucknow Police have already identified as many as 200 hotspots frequented by girls in the city. These are places from where the majority of stalking and eve-teasing cases were reported in the last one year, he added. The project will be launched first in the state capital Lucknow, which is the only city in Uttar Pradesh selected by the Centre to be developed as the “Safe City for Women”. Once it is successful, the same can be replicated in other cities of the state, he added.

(With input from agencies)

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