Free Press Bulletin
Free Press Bulletin

Here are the top 5 news updates of January 29, 2021:

1. Maharashtra govt gives nod for resuming local train services for all from Feb 1

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has written to the Indian Railways seeking that Mumbai local trains resume for the general public from February 1 with fixed time slots, keeping in mind the need for social distancing at all times. A final decision, however, will come after the Railway authorities take a call on the same.

As per the letter to the Railways, local train services be allowed from the start of services for the day to 7 AM and then again from 12 PM to 4 PM in the afternoon and from 9 PM to closure of local train services for the day with effect from February 1, 2021. The local train services will be restricted to the essential services staff only as is being permitted currently from 7 AM to 12 PM and from 4 PM to 9 PM. Meanwhile, the state government authorities have requested establishments to stagger their work schedule in a manner wherein their staff will be able to avail the services of the local trains in the said timings.

2. Clashes break out between farmers and locals at Singhu border; lathi-charge, tear gas used

Police fired tear gas and resorted to baton charge to break up a clash between farmers and a large group of men claiming to be local residents who hurled stones at each other at the Singhu border, one of the main protest sites against farm laws. Delhi Police SHO (Alipur) Pradeep Paliwal was injured in the violence after a man attacked him with a sword, an official said, adding that some people were also wounded. The official said that police detained the man who attacked the station house officer.

The group claiming to be locals demanded that the farmers vacate the Singhu border, one of the main protest sites around the capital, alleging that they had "insulted" the national flag during their tractor parade on Republic Day. Armed with sticks, the group of locals reached the site and asked the farmers to leave while raising slogans against them. Both sides also pelted stones at each other. The protesters at the Singhu border, much of which is barred for entry from outside, came out in numbers to resist the locals. However, they were promptly stopped by farmer union volunteers which helped the situation from turning ugly.

3. MP police file FIR against Tharoor, 6 journalists over 'defamatory' tweets accusing Delhi Police of farmer's murder

A day after the Noida police booked MP Shashi Tharoor and several senior journalists for sedition, the Madhya Pradesh police has also filed a similar complaint. According to reports, an FIR has been registered against them for posting "defamatory, false and instigating tweets on their Twitter handles falsely accusing Delhi Police of murder of a person" on Republic Day. The journalists named in the FIR are Mrinal Pande, Rajdeep Sardesai, Vinod Jose, Zafar Agha, Paresh Nath and Anant Nath.

The complainant had accused them of posting false and misleading tweets from their accounts during the farmers' protest on January 26 in the national capital. The complainant also alleged that their action led to a "big threat to national security" and caused danger to the lives of many people in Delhi and elsewhere.

4. 'India would become a country of incarcerated artists, flourishing lapdogs...': Kunal Kamra responds to SC

Facing a contempt case for his tweets, comedian Kunal Kamra has responded to the Supreme Court in a six page affidavit. In his own style, Kamra has made a case that he had no intention to diminish the citizen's faith in the Supreme Court as an institution. From the case against Munnawar Farooqi to rising intolerance in the nation - a range of current topics have found a mention in his affidavit.

"Should powerful people and institutions continue to show an inability to tolerate rebuke or criticism, we would be reduced to a country of incarcerated artists and flourishing lapdogs. If this court believes I have crossed a line and wants to shut down my internet indefinitely, then I too will write Happy Independence Day post cards every 15th August, just like my Kashmiri friends,' he said.

5. Kangana Ranaut to play former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in political period drama

Kangana Ranaut will essay the role of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in an upcoming political drama. The actress said the yet-untitled film is not a biopic and has also revealed that many prominent actors will be a part of the upcoming project. "Yes, we are working on the project and the script is in final stages. It is not the biopic of Indira Gandhi, it is a grand period film, to be precise a political drama that will help my generation to understand (the) socio-political landscape of current India," said Kangana.

She added that "the film is based on a book" and director Sai Kabir, who worked with Kangana earlier in "Revolver Rani" will write the story and screenplay, and also direct the project.

(With input from agencies)

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