Morning Digest | Udhayanidhi Stalin’s remarks require proper response, PM Modi tells Ministers at informal meeting; Ready to hold polls as per legal provisions, CEC on ‘one nation, one election’, and more


Sanatana Dharma | Udhayanidhi Stalin’s remarks require proper response, PM Modi tells Ministers at informal meeting

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday reportedly told his Ministerial colleagues that DMK leader and Tamil Nadu Minister Udhayanidhi Stalin’s remarks on Sanatana Dharmarequired a “proper response” based on “facts of the issue” within the contemporary situation and emphasised that the Constitution does not allow for abuse of any religion. On the issue of Bharat being substituted for India in government communication in English as well, Mr. Modi reportedly said that only those authorised to speak on behalf of the government should comment on the issue.

Ready to hold polls as per legal provisions, CEC on ‘one nation, one election’

Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Rajiv Kumar on September 6 said the Election Commission of India was “ready to conduct elections as per legal provisions”. He was responding to a query whether the ECI was ready to conduct the much-discussed ‘One Nation, One Election’. The CEC was addressing a press conference in Bhopal on the preparations for the Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh due later this year. On the specific questions asked in the context of ‘One nation, One election’, Mr. Kumar said the poll commission was mandated to “deliver elections before the time” as per constitutional provisions and the RP Act (Representation of the People Act, 1951.)

‘India-Bharat’ issue being raised to mislead people: Mallikarjun Kharge

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge on September 6 said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was raising irrelevant issues like changing the country’s name to Bharat because it was unnerved by the formation of the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) coalition. “The India-Bharat issue reflects the BJP’s panic. The party is desperately trying to mislead the people,” Mr. Kharge said.

Blocking blacklisting of terrorists smacks of doublespeak: India

India has told the UN Security Council that blocking evidence-based proposals to blacklist globally sanctioned terrorists without providing justifications is uncalled for and “smacks of doublespeak”. “The working methods of the UNSC Sanctions Committees continue to dent the credibility of the UN Security Council,” India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj said here on Tuesday.

40 injured in protest over Army barricade in Manipur

More than 40 people were injured in a stampede at Manipur’s Bishnupur district on Wednesday as security forces fired tear gas shells to disperse over 10,000 people who had converged to demand the removal of an Army barricade. A defence source said the stand-off continued through the day. Armed miscreants fired at the Central security forces and a mob threw stones at them. Three personnel of the Rapid Action Force (RAF), a specialised anti-riot force, were injured in the incident. 

Won’t let INDIA bloc seat-sharing talks become media spectacle: SP leader 

The Samajwadi Party (SP) won’t allow seat-sharing negotiations in Uttar Pradesh to become a media spectacle, said party leader Javed Ali Khan, who is part of the INDIA bloc’s 14-member coordination committee. In an interview to The Hindu, he also junked suggestions that the Congress and the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) are pretending to be cosying up to the Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) as a tactic to get more seats for themselves in the State.

Shah, Meghwal meet Kovind days after he was appointed head of ‘one nation, one election’ panel

Home Minister Amit Shah and Law Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal on September 6 met former president Ram Nath Kovind who heads the committee on simultaneous polls in New Delhi, days after the government notified the panel, sources said. They described the nearly hour-long meeting as a “courtesy call”. Efforts are on to hold the first meeting of the high-level committee in the coming days and a venue is being finalised.

Punjab AAP Minister says there is no alliance with Congress 

The cracks between the Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), partners in the newly formed Indian National Developmental, Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) were on display on September 6 after a Cabinet Minister in Punjab, where the AAP is in power, ruled out any alliance with the Congress. Punjab Tourism Minister Anmol Gagan Maan at a press conference in Chandigarh said there would be no alliance of the AAP with the Congress party in Punjab.

China warns against ‘new Cold War’ at ASEAN summit

Chinese Premier Li Qiang said on September 6 it is important to avoid a “new Cold War” when dealing with conflicts between countries as world leaders gathered in Indonesia amid sharpening geopolitical rivalries across the Indo-Pacific region. Speaking at an annual summit involving members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and China, Japan and South Korea, Mr. Li said countries needed to “appropriately handle differences and disputes”.

Not the joint statement but Ukraine will be EU’s priority at G-20 summit: EU official

Ukraine will be the topmost item on the agenda of the European Union at the G-20 Summit, a senior EU official said on Wednesday. Clarifying the Western expectation about the upcoming summit that will be held here during the weekend, the official expressed confidence about forming consensus about the Global South and placed it on record that the EU “wished” to have the participation of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy at the G-20 summit in New Delhi. He also indicated that Ursula von der Leyen, the President of the European Commission is unlikely to travel to Delhi for the summit and said India’s text for negotiating an outcome document is “not sufficient”. 

Ahead of Joe Biden visit, India drops tariff hikes on U.S. almonds, lentils

Two days before U.S. President Joe Biden arrives in New Delhi for a bilateral meeting as well as the G-20 Summit, India has dropped the retaliatory customs tariffs it had imposed on imports of some American goods like almonds and lentils, effective September 6, 2023. India had raised import duties on 28 American products in June 2019, after the United States had hiked its customs duties on certain steel and aluminium products. In a notification issued on September 5, the Finance Ministry dropped some of these tariff hikes “on being satisfied that it is necessary in the public interest so to do”.

Sri Lanka will investigate allegations of intelligence complicity in 2019 Easter bombings

Sri Lanka’s government will appoint a parliamentary committee to investigate allegations made in a British television report that Sri Lankan intelligence had complicity in the 2019 Easter Sunday bombings that killed 269 people. A man interviewed in the Channel 4 videos released on Tuesday said he arranged a meeting between a local Islamic State-inspired group and a top state intelligence official to hatch a plot to create insecurity in Sri Lanka and enable Gotabaya Rajapaksa to win the presidential election later that year.

Ukraine’s Parliament approves ex-lawmaker Rustem Umerov as Defence Minister

Ukraine’s parliament approved the appointment of former lawmaker Rustem Umerov as Defence Minister on September 6, in the biggest shake-up of the defence establishment since Russia’s invasion 18 months ago. Mr. Umerov (41) replaces Oleksii Reznikov, who helped secure billions of dollars of Western military aid as Defence Minister but was dogged by media allegations of corruption at the Ministry and sacked by President Volodymyr Zelensky on Sunday.

This summer was a global record breaker for the highest heat ever measured, meteorologists say

Earth has sweltered through its hottest Northern Hemisphere summer ever measured, with a record warm August capping a season of brutal and deadly temperatures, according to the World Meteorological Organization. Last month was not only the hottest August scientists ever recorded by far with modern equipment, it was also the second hottest month measured, behind only July 2023, WMO and the European climate service Copernicus announced Wednesday.

Asia Cup | Pakistan pace trio too hot to handle as Bangladesh bowled out for 193

Haris Rauf proved to be too quick for the Bangladeshi batters, who were also troubled relentlessly by Naseem Shah as the Shakib Al Hasan-led side was bundled out for a paltry 193, well inside 40 overs in an Asia Cup Super 4 match against Pakistan in Lahore on September 6. Despite a 100-run stand and twin half-centuries by skipper Shakib (53 off 57 balls) and former captain Mushfiqur Rahim (64 off 87 balls), Bangladesh suffered twin batting collapse on either side of the fifth wicket partnership.

Ballon d’Or | Messi, Haaland, Mbappe in shortlist; Ronaldo left out for first time in 20 years

Argentina forward Lionel Messi was among the nominees for the men’s Ballon d’Or trophy announced by organisers France Football magazine on Wednesday. Seven-times winner Messi, who plays for Inter Miami, led Argentina to World Cup glory in Qatar in December, their first triumph since 1986. Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo, who has won the award five times, did not receive a nomination for the first time in 20 years.


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