Daily Briefing: A new national health law will be presented to Parliament; N Biren Singh will remain CM of Manipur

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The Monsoon Session of Parliament is expected to see the introduction of a new National Public Health Bill which will replace the 125-year-old Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897, The Indian Express learned. Besides establishing a four-tier health administration system with “clearly defined” powers and even defining a lockdown, the bill will also cover public health emergencies caused by bioterrorism, natural disasters, chemical and nuclear attacks or accidents.

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Poland once closed its borders to block those fleeing violence in Syria and Libya. But now that Russia is invading a country with which Poland shares close ties, it has responded with oppressive heat. Its capital Warsaw has become a transit hub from which refugees from Ukraine take trains and buses to other cities in the country and in Europe.

In this edition of the exchange of ideas, Bajaj Finserv CMD, Sanjiv Bajaj, talks about the need for businesses to digitize and innovate. He even champions the strengths of digital currency.

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In what is probably a first, China framed the Ukrainian crisis in terms of NATO’s eastward expansion, and juxtaposed it with US strategy in the Indo-Pacific, including the Quad, of which India is a part. “The Ukrainian crisis provides us with a mirror to observe the situation in Asia-Pacific. We can only ask, how can we prevent a crisis like this from happening in Asia-Pacific? said Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Le Yucheng.

Amid the pandemic and a delayed monsoon retreat, the annual highway construction target of 12,000 km for this fiscal year is unlikely to be encountered, with figures lower than those of 2020-21. According to current estimates, this exercise should end with about 10,500 km of motorways, or about 28 km per day.

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End race speculation best job in Manipur, the central leadership of the BJP announced on Sunday that N Biren Singh would remain as the chief minister of the northeastern state. An official from the chief minister’s office said the swearing-in ceremony would take place on Monday. However, uncertainty persists in Uttarakhand and Goa where the party is supposed to take a call today.

A quarter century after splitting with Lalu Prasad, veteran socialist leader Sharad Yadav merged Loktrantik Janata Dal, a party he launched in 2018, along with the Rashtriya Janata Dal led by the former chief minister of Bihar who is behind bars in connection with a corruption case. From the scene, the leaders promised a “stronger” socialist front, determined to “evict the communal forces” and deplored the “policy of compromise”.

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh is working on plans to counter the growing influence of the Popular Front of India on university campuses in the south and elsewhere, we learn. These plans include expanding the base of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad in southern India and reaching out to sections within the Muslim community not aligned with the PFI. The Sangh believes that the student wing of the PFI, the Campus Front of India, has helped galvanize minority students on the hijab controversy in Karnataka and succeeded in making it a national issue.

Mega plans by more than 50 companies to raise more than Rs 77,000 crore through initial public offerings appear to have been shelve for now as a result of market volatility and the exit of foreign portfolio investors following the Russian war on Ukraine. This is in addition to the IPO of LIC through which the government plans to raise around Rs 60,000 crore.

And finally

Vimal Kumar recalls the face of an 8-year-old prankster who could break down in a puddle of tears when caught pulling a prank. Lakshya Sen could also gently frown and pretend he had nothing to do with the unsavory business that had been going on. Watching Sen at the All England this week, all these years later, Vimal is still amazed at how liquid steel has started to flow through Sen’s veins over the past six months. Coach Vimal Kumar reveals how the homesick English Open finalist became a steely, thinking commuter.

Delhi Confidential: The Raths have always been part of the political playbook for a long time, but Lok Sabha President Om Birla has found another way to use them. Birla will wave to Prasadam Raths from his official residence today. These specially designed vehicles have facilities for cooking food. They will provide hot food to patient attendants in six hospitals including Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, Safdarjung Hospital, Lady Harding Hospital in Delhi.

In this episode of Podcast “3 things”, Shubhajit Roy joins the show to discuss the significance of Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s visit to India and what it means for bilateral relations between the two countries. Next, Krishn Kaushik talks about the report of a commission of inquiry into press freedom in Kashmir. And finally, we review Vice President Venkaiah Naidu’s speech on the saffronization of education in India.

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