On Tuesday, Delhi Police's Special Cell conducted searches at 30 locations connected with online news portal NewsClick and its journalists. This action came in response to allegations of receiving funds for pro-China propaganda. Several journalists were taken in for questioning and faced a list of 25 inquiries, covering foreign travels and involvement in various protests. The raids, part of a case filed under the anti-terror law UAPA, did not result in any immediate arrests. This event drew criticism from various political parties and the Press Club of India. The government's scrutiny of NewsClick reportedly began after its coverage of workers' and farmers' issues.
In Maharashtra, distressing reports continue to emerge regarding multiple deaths at government-run hospitals. A total of 31 deaths were reported at the Dr. Shankarrao Chavan Government Medical College and Hospital in Nanded within a span of 48 hours, with 24 occurring between September 30 and October 1 and seven more between October 1 and 2. Additionally, 18 deaths were recorded within 24 hours at the Government Medical College and Hospital in Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar. This alarming situation has raised concerns about healthcare facilities and their ability to provide adequate care and resources to patients in need.
The Nobel Prize in physics for 2023 has been awarded to three scientists: Pierre Agostini from The Ohio State University in the US, Ferenc Krausz from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics and Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, Germany, and Anne L'Huillier from Lund University in Sweden. The award recognizes their experiments that have revolutionized the understanding of electrons inside atoms and molecules by enabling the creation of extremely short pulses of light to measure rapid electron processes. While currently focused on understanding the universe, it is hoped that this research will lead to advancements in electronics and disease diagnosis. Anne L'Huillier is notably the fifth woman to win a Nobel Prize in physics.
Nepal experienced two earthquakes, one with a magnitude of 4.6 and another stronger one measuring 6.2, occurring within 25 minutes of each other. These tremors were felt in Delhi-NCR and various parts of northern India, causing people to evacuate buildings. The Delhi Police urged residents not to panic and advised against using elevators during the tremors. There were no immediate reports of significant damage or casualties in India due to the earthquakes.
A Delhi court has granted the National Investigation Agency (NIA) an eight-day extension of custody for Seiminlun Gangte, who was arrested in connection with ethnic violence in Manipur. The NIA asserted that Gangte's arrest is related to a case of violence resulting from a transnational conspiracy involving terrorist groups based in Myanmar and Bangladesh, aiming to wage war against the Government of India by exploiting the current ethnic unrest in Manipur. Gangte was arrested in Manipur and later brought to Delhi on transit remand, and a case against him has been registered under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and other penal laws.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi questioned the Congress party regarding its stance on allocating rights based on population, emphasising that the first right over the country's resources should belong to the poor. This statement follows a caste survey released by the Bihar government, highlighting that OBCs and EBCs constitute 63% of the state's total population. Modi challenged whether the Congress aims to diminish the rights of Muslims and alleged that the party is being influenced by forces working against the nation's interest. He stressed his focus on the welfare of the poor and accused the Congress of converting democracy into corruption and dynasty-based rule.
The Bihar government, led by Nitish Kumar, announced a 10 per cent reservation for economically weaker sections (EWS) in judicial services, state-run law institutes, and universities. This decision follows a cabinet meeting and amendments in the guidelines of the State Judicial Services, 1951. Additionally, the state cabinet approved the construction of 100 veterinary hospitals and the creation of 30 additional clerk positions for the Consumers Affairs Department.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi continued his visit to the Golden Temple for a second day, engaging in "sewa" (voluntary service) at the community kitchen ("langar"). Donning a blue scarf, he peeled vegetables, washed utensils, and served "langar" to devotees, also partaking in the communal meal while seated on the floor. This visit follows his engagement in various religious and service activities at the Golden Temple on the previous day.
In the ongoing effort to curb child marriages, more than 800 individuals were arrested in Assam during the second phase of a state-wide crackdown, as announced by Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. This initiative is part of a broader campaign to tackle the social menace, with the number of arrests expected to increase as the operation progresses. In the last five years, a total of 3,907 people have been arrested in child marriage-related cases in Assam, with a significant portion facing charges under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012 (POCSO).
Starting from Wednesday, the British government has implemented a proposed visa fee increase, affecting various visa categories, including visit and student visas. For less than six months' visit visas, the fee has risen to GBP 115, an increase of GBP 15, while student visas have become GBP 127 more expensive for applicants from around the world. The hike in fees aims to contribute to funding vital public services and to align the application fees with those charged for in-country applications. The increase is expected to generate over GBP 1 billion to support the UK's National Health Service (NHS) and public sector wage increase.