Today’s Big Stories
India gears up for second mission, week after ISRO aborted attempt
India’s second moon mission Chandrayaan-2 seeking to explore the unchartered Lunar south pole by landing a rover will be launched onboard its most powerful rocket GSLV-Mk0III-M1 from Sriharikota today, a week after the lift-off was aborted due to a technical snag. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) scientists, who aborted the previous launch on July 15 with 56 minutes left for the countdown because of a technical glitch, have taken quick remedial action based on an analysis carried out by a team set up to look into the snag and announced the rescheduled launch three days ago. The Rs 978 crore mission will be launched at 2.43pm from the second launch pad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre, over 100km from Chennai.
HD Kumaraswamy government remains in deep waters ahead of trust vote today as 2 MLAs decide to move SC
Even as the ruling Congress-JDS government in Karnataka has been rigorously trying to save the coalition, tension seems to be gripping the alliance from all corners. While two Independent MLAs are planning to approach the Supreme Court today, the lone Bahujan Samaj Party legislator may stay away from the trust motion. The MLAs H Nagesh and R Shankar in their draft petition to the apex court claimed that the ruling coalition may indulge in “delaying tactics” to stall proceedings of Vidhana Soudha. On the other hand, lawmaker N Mahesh from Bahujan Samaj Party has said that his high command has told him to “abstain from voting on trust motion”. BSP Mayawati, however, in a statement later said that she has directed the MLA to vote in favour of Kumaraswamy government.
In Other News
Green funeral: Former Delhi chief minister and Congress’ stalwart Sheila Dikshit was on Sunday cremated using the CNG method, in compliance with her wish. The concept of CNG to curb pollution was introduced in the national capital by Dikshit during her tenure as CM.
Scathing statement: Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik on Sunday asked militants to stop killing innocent people, including security personnel, and instead rise against “those who have looted the wealth of Kashmir for years”.
Another feather in her cap: Indian sprinter Hima Das extended her sensational run by claiming her fifth gold of the month as she returned to her pet 400m competition with a season-best time of 52.09s. This was Hima’s fifth gold medal since July 2 when she ran her first competitive race in Europe.
Change in plans: After the Indian squad for the tour to West Indies was announced earlier on Sunday sans MS Dhoni who had announced his unavailability for the same, his request to train with a battalion of the Indian Army’s Parachute Regiment for two months has been approved by Army chief General Bipin Rawat.
Imran Khan-Trump talks: On his maiden trip to the US, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan will hold talks with US President Donald Trump and reboot bilateral ties that were hit after the US president publicly criticised Islamabad, cancelled military aid and asked it to do more to fight terrorism.
On Our Specials
Removal and valorization: In 2002, the Ghazipur landfill was deemed unsafe. After years of failed attempts, rejected plans leading to the landfill nearly overshadowing the Taj Mahal and Qutub Minar, the Prime Minister’s Office has finally stepped in to grapple with the issue that has plagued Delhi for decades. The PMO has tasked the principal scientific advisor to the government, who advises the PM through a Science, Technology and Innovation Advisory Council, to answer the question that has plagued the capital for years. Aniruddha Ghosal looks at why this plan waste as a resource is key to mitigating the crisis at Ghazipur.
Sad demise: Delhi has no full stops and is not at all a static city. This was something which acted as the governing principle for Sheila Dikshit, the Congress leader who ruled the city for three consecutive terms as its chief minister from December 1998 to December 2013 and passed away on Saturday, fighting a battle to revive the fortunes of her party as president of its Delhi unit. Dikshit closely identified with Delhi and carried out her work with an extraordinary passion, never distracted with any ambition to look beyond the precincts of the city government. Read Siddharth Misra’s moving obituary here.
Sheila Dikshit, Delhi’s longest-serving chief minister and a senior Congress leader, died on Saturday at the age of 81. Here’s a timeline of her successful political career.