EC suspends election officials, after finding EVM in vehicle linked to BJP candidate
Daily NEWS Summary | 02-04-2021; The Election Commission suspended four election officials and decided to hold a new vote at a booth in the Ratabari assembly constituency in southern Assam after Electronic Voting System (EVM) machines were found in a vehicle linked to a BJP candidate,who is contesting the Patharkandi seat in the Karimganj district.
- Election commision Officials said that these election officials were unaware that they had taken an EVM in a vehicle registered to Madhumita Paul, wife of candidate Patharkandi BJP Krishnendu Paul.
- The team, whose car allegedly broke down near Nilambazar, 20 km from the Karimganj district headquarters, was returning from school 149-Indira MV in Ratabari district, some 70 km away.
- However, EVM stamps were found intact, but the EC decided to proceed to a new vote at the corresponding electoral college. A report was also requested from the electoral observer.
- According to a statement issued by the EC, the crowd had damaged the vehicle when Anbamuthan and the district police commissioner arrived.
- Police had to use “target shots” to disperse the firing crowd after the SP was slightly injured.
- The EC requested a field report on the incident around 10 p.m. thursday, four hours after the end of the second round of voting in 39 of Assam’s 126 seats in Assam.
- Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said today that there should be a “serious reassessment” of the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs) by all national parties.
- Vadra’s comments could reignite the debate over the use of EVM.
- In August 2018, during a multi-party meeting called by the Electoral Commission (EC), opposition parties called for a return to the voting system.
- The latest trigger was a video posted by the editor of an Assamese station showing an EVM found in the vehicle of a BJP candidate.
India Has Not Imposed Any Covid-19 Vaccine Export Ban: MEA
Daily NEWS Summary | 02-04-2021; Claiming that India has not imposed any ban on the export of coronavirus vaccines, as the Department of Foreign Affairs (MEA) said on Friday. They added that the country had taken the lead in shipping vaccines abroad, with more than 640 lakh of doses supplied to more than 80 countries so far.
- MEA spokesman Arindam Bagchi also said the ministry’s “Vaccine Maitree” initiative to deliver vaccines abroad has been “very successful and highly appreciated” by our partners around the world.
“To date, under the ‘Vaccine Maitree’ initiative, we have provided a total of approximately 644 lakhs of doses to the global community and of these 104 lakhs of doses have been provided as a grant, 357 lakhs of doses commercially and 182 lakh dose through the COVAX initiative, ”Bagchi said at an online press conference.
- Secondly, the demand for made in India vaccines, many countries around the world have requested their supply Bagchi said.
- The “Vaccine Maitree” initiative has been very successful and highly appreciated by our partners around the world and Bagchi added “we continue to try to source wherever possible given our national needs,”.
- When asked about reports that Nepal approached India for an additional 5 million doses of vaccine but got no response, he said that India had taken the lead in shipping vaccines abroad.
Iran and world powers are ready to welcome the United States back to the nuclear deal
Daily NEWS Summary | 02-04-2021; Iran and the major powers in the deal to prevent Tehran from developing nuclear weapons said that they were ready to welcome the return of the United States to the deal.
- The chair of the group, made up of the European Union, China, France, Germany, Russia, Great Britain and Iran, said that the participants underscored their commitment to preserve the JCPOA [Joint Global Plan of Action] and discussed modalities to ensure the return to its full and effective implementation.
- According to a statement after their virtual meeting the group said it would resume discussions next week in Vienna on the 2015 deal, “to clearly identify the lifting of sanctions and nuclear implementation measures.”
- The statement also said that the group’s coordinator “will also intensify separate contacts in Vienna” with all participants in the nuclear deal and the United States.
- In Tehran, state television quoted Abbas Araghchi, the Iranian nuclear negotiator in Friday’s virtual meeting, saying at the meeting that “any return of the United States to the nuclear deal requires no negotiation and the way is quite clear.
- Washington withdrew from the deal unilaterally in 2018 under President Donald Trump, but successor Joe Biden has indicated the United States would be willing to join.
- But there are complications, as Iran has consistently violated the restrictions of the agreement, such as the amount of enriched uranium it can store and the purity to which it can enrich it.
- Tehran’s measures were calculated to put pressure on the other countries in the agreement – Russia, China, France, Germany and Britain – to do more to offset crippling sanctions that were re-imposed under Trump.
- Iran has said that before resuming compliance with the agreement, the United States must revert to its own obligations under the agreement and withdraw the sanctions.
- The International Atomic Energy Agency has said that over the past two years Iran has accumulated a large amount of nuclear material and new capabilities, and has used its time to hone its skills in these areas.
Covid Updates: The number of reported coronavirus cases in India was 1, 23,24,070 at the time of publication of this bulletin, with a death toll of 1,64,902.
- India recorded the largest single-day increase in coronavirus cases in six months with 81,466 new infections in 24 hours, according to Union Health Ministry data updated on Friday. The increase in single-day cases is the highest on record since October 2, 2020.
- Registering a steady increase for the 23rd consecutive day, active cases jumped to 6,14,696, or 5% of total infections, while the cure rate fell further to 93.67%, the data showed.