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President urges people to follow discipline amid corona crisis

The President said, “In India, we see Buddhism as a fresh expression of the sublime truth. In modern times, two exceptionally great Indians — Mahatma Gandhi and Babasaheb Ambedkar — found inspiration in the words of the Buddha and went on to shape the destiny of the nation.”

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Ram Nath Kovind

New Delhi, July 4 : President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday urged people to follow discipline and maintain physical distance to protect themselves from the COVID-19 pandemic.

He said this on the occasion of Asaadh Poornima while inaugurating the Dharma Chakra Day from the Rashtrapati Bhavan.

“We are in the midst of a virulent pandemic that has overwhelmed the entire humanity. Perhaps no part of the world remains untouched by this calamity that adversely affects every individual. We have to follow certain discipline and maintain physical distance,” the President said.

Delivering his address on the occasion to emphasise the teachings of Lord Buddha and the eightfold path shown by him, Kovind said, “The world has suffered much this year, and I sincerely wish that this sacred day heralds a new ray of hope and grants a glimpse of happiness.

“I also pray that it lights the lamp of wisdom in the heart of everyone,” President Kovind said.

Union Minister of Culture Prahlad Patel, Minister of State (MoS) for Minorities Affairs Kiren Rijiju and Member of Parliament Vinay Sahasrabuddhe also addressed the opening ceremony of the event.

This day is also aptly observed as Guru Poornima by both Buddhists and Hindus as a day to mark reverence to their Gurus. President Kovind said the Buddha”s cure for human suffering remains as relevant today as it was over two and half millennia ago.

He said there is no doubt that the urgency of abiding by the values that the Buddha preached is eternal. “Today, as the pandemic ravages human lives and economies across the globe, the Buddha”s message serves like a beacon.” He advised people to shun greed, hatred, violence, jealousy and many other vices to find happiness.

The President said, “In India, we see Buddhism as a fresh expression of the sublime truth. In modern times, two exceptionally great Indians — Mahatma Gandhi and Babasaheb Ambedkar — found inspiration in the words of the Buddha and went on to shape the destiny of the nation.”

Following in their footsteps, the President suggested that we should strive to hear the call of Buddha to respond to his invitation to walk the Noble Path. “Contrast this message with the hankering of an unrepentant mankind indulging in the same old violence and degradation of nature,” the President said and added, “We all know that the moment the virulence of coronavirus slows down and we have a far more serious challenge of climate change before us.”

Expressing his happiness to host the Asadh Purnima celebration in the Rashtrapati Bhavan, the President said it is part of our civilizational journey for the welfare of the universe since time immemorial. “The day is also known as Guru Purnima. Hindus and Jains also celebrate it as a mark of reverence for their spiritual teachers. This day is an unbroken link to India”s eternal pursuit of wisdom without dogma.”

On Asadh Purnima, some 2,500 years ago, the Word of Wisdom was spoken out by the Buddha for the first time. On attaining enlightenment, the Buddha spent five weeks in a state beyond description and then he started sharing with people the nectar he had discovered.

India

Congress blames ‘toxic’ TV debate for Rajiv Tyagi’s untimely demise

“Till when will toxic debates and venomous spokespersons continue to kill sober and simple people? Till when TV channels will continue to run the TRP business through such debates? Surjewala tweeted

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Randeep Surjewala

New Delhi, Aug 13 : The Congress has blamed ‘toxic’ TV debate for the untimely demise of its spokesperson Rajiv Tyagi, who passed away on Wednesday after suffering a cardiac arrest.

The Congress leader had attended a television debate at 5 p.m. and complained of chest pain soon after the programme ended. He then fell unconscious and was rushed to the Yashoda Hospital, where doctors pronounced him dead.

Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala tweeted, “Till when will toxic debates and venomous spokespersons continue to kill sober and simple people? Till when TV channels will continue to run the TRP business through such debates? Till when will divisive communal agenda continue to poison the soul of the country? Till when? #rajiv_tyagi.”

Congress interim President Sonia Gandhi, former party chief Rahul Gandhi and senior leader Priyanka Gandhi spoke to Tyagi’s wife and extended their condolences.

Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet, “Congress has lost a lion. We will always remember his love for the party. My condolences are with the family.”

“Shocked to hear about the tragic demise of Shri Rajiv Tyagi. He was too young and had a long life ahead of him. It is a big loss for the party. My heart goes out to his family & wellwishers. May God give them the strength in this hour of grief,” tweeted senior leader Ahmed Patel.

A resident of Ghaziabad, Tyagi was a member of the Uttar Pradesh Congress before becoming the party’s national spokesperson.

The Congress in a statement said, “We are deeply saddened by the sudden demise of Rajiv Tyagi, a staunch Congressman and a true patriot. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends in this hour of grief.”

Congress leader Jitin Prasada said, “I am shocked and deeply saddened by his untimely demise.”

BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra said, “I can’t believe that my friend Rajiv Tyagi is not with us any more. He was in a debate with me at 5 p.m. Life is uncertain.”

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India

Refrain from inappropriate social media posts: Telangana Police

With a provocative social media post triggering violence in Bengaluru, Telangana Director General of Police M. Mahender Reddy and Hyderabad Police Commissioner Anjani Kumar on Wednesday cautioned people against posting inappropriate content online.

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Begaluru Violence

Gajwel: The police chief, in a statement, requested people to be cautious while posting any content on social media.

“A malicious social media post has led to mindless violence in Bangalore (Bengaluru) city resulting in loss of life and properties. Public are requested not to post/circulate any inappropriate content in social media which is likely to adversely affect public order and peace in the society,” the DGP said.

He said Telangana Police were closely watching round the clock for anti-social elements circulating such malicious content in social media.

“All the SHOs and other senior Officers have been instructed to register specific cases in every such instance and initiate strong and strict action against such offenders without fail. I request the public to partner with police to maintain the highest standards of safety and security in Telangana,” he added.

Anjani Kumar has also urged people to be very cautious before posting anything on social media. “Last night there was violence in Bangalore because of such a social media post. We will take very firm legal action for any irresponsible post. We cannot allow under any circumstances our city to get a bad name,” he tweeted.

A Facebook message posted allegedly by a relative of a Congress MLA triggered violent protest in Bengaluru on Tuesday night.

Three people were killed in the police firing and 60 police personnel were injured in the violent incident of stone pelting and attacks by rioters.

Earlier, Telangana Industries Minister K. T. Rama Rao said that social media cannot turn into an instrument for anti-social behaviour.

The minister took to Twitter to share his thoughts after violence in Bengaluru.

“Goes to show you how dangerous spreading fake news in social media can be…,” tweeted Rama Rao, who is son of Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao.

Rama Rao, who is also the President of Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), requested all social media users to be responsible. He urged them not to indulge in propaganda and stop spreading fake news.

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Cities

Bengal govt withdraws state-wide lockdown on Aug 28

Hence, the statewide lockdown will only be observed on August 20, 21, 27 and 31.

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Mamata Banerjee

Kolkata, Aug 12 : The Mamata Banerjee-led West Bengal government on Wednesday withdrew the complete lockdown on August 28 and imposed a curfew on August 20 instead.

The state government passed an order to this effect, saying the step was taken in response to various requests it had received.

As a result, the lockdown dates were once again revised to six days this month. This is the fourth time that the state government has revised the coronavirus lockdown dates for the month of August.

Hence, the statewide lockdown will only be observed on August 20, 21, 27 and 31.

According to the statement, the revision comes in view of difficulties cited by businesses and banking operators due to the consecutive two-day lockdown in the last week of August.

“Several communications have been received citing difficulty to conduct of businesses and banking operations because of the two-day lockdown on Thursday and Friday in the last week of August, followed by one-day lockdown on the following Monday. The state government has considered the requests for relaxation of lockdown,” the notification read.

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