InfoDigger: A source of simple and sequential news


Maharashtra Home Minister tests positive for COVID19


Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh has tested positive for COVID-19.

Informing the same through a tweet, Mr Deshmukh said his COVID test result has come as positive, but his health condition is good. However, he has appealed to all who came in contact with him to get their COVID test done.

He also stated in the tweet that he will soon defeat corona and be ready to serve the people.

#COVID19 #AnilDeshmukh

2020YearReview: Ministry of Road Transport and Highways


December 2020

25th - Inauguration and foundation stone laid for 27 highway projects in Assam. These projects carry a road length of nearly 439 kilometres, involving a construction value of Rs. 2,366 crores.

24th - Inauguration and foundation stone laid for 18 highway projects in Rajasthan. These projects carry a road length of nearly 1127 kilometres, involving a construction value of Rs. 8,341 crore. All the districts are connected to National highways.

21st - Inauguration and foundation stone laid for over 765 km long 14 National Highway projects worth over Rs 13,000 crore in Telangana. 59 road works with approved length of 1918 km costing Rs 17,617 crore sanctioned in Telangana during the last 6 years. Rs 2,436 crore sanctioned under CRIF till now for the State, Rs 1483 crore already released.

19th - Inauguration and foundation stone laid for about 1200 km long 33 National Highway projects worth nearly Rs 11,000 crore in Karnataka.

10th - Inauguration of the three-lane 1.5 km long Koilwar bridge over Sone river in Bihar through Video Conferencing today. A sum of Rs 266 crore has been spent on the bridge.

4th - Inauguration and foundation stone laid for 14 other NH projects with a total length of about 266 KM and cost of about Rs 4127 crore. 55 works of total length 1063.41 km and total cost of Rs. 11,711 Cr approved in last 6 years for development and improvement of National Highways in Nagaland.  

November 2020

26th - Inauguration and foundation stone laid for 16 National Highway projects with a total length of over 500 km worth Rs 7,477 crore in Uttar Pradesh.

20th- NHAI Collaborates with 200 Premier Institutes to Leverage Local Expertise

October 2020

27th - Inauguration and foundation stone laid for nearly 262 km worth over Rs 2,752 crore in Tripura today

20th - Foundation Stone of country’s first Multi-modal Logistic Park in Assam. The Rs 693.97 crore park will provide direct air, road, rail and waterways connectivity

16th - Inauguration and foundation stone laid for 16 NH projects in Andhra Pradesh Over 1400 km long Highways worth Rs 15,592 crore to boost the economy of the State.

15th - Work begins on Zozila Tunnel – the longest tunnel road in Asia. This tunnel will ensure all-weather connectivity between Srinagar valley and Leh on NH-1. It involves the construction of a 14.15 Km long tunnel at an altitude of about 3000 m under Zojila pass.

13th - Inauguration and foundation stone laid for 8 National Highway projects in Kerala

7th - One-kilometre long Road-Over-Bridge across Railway Level Crossing on NH 45-A at Arumparthapuram, Puducherry was inaugurated. The Road-Over-Bridge worth Rs 35 crore will fulfil the long-awaited need of Puducherry.

September 2020

28th - The 1.420 km Gwalior-Morena flyover on NH-3 in Madhya Pradesh worth Rs 108 crore was dedicated to Nation

10th - Nitin Gadkari approved a proposal to construct 120 km Munger - Bhagalpur - Tirpety - Kahalgaon concrete road on national highway 80 in Bihar which will be constructed at a cost of Rs 971 cr. This will be a 2-lane road with paved shoulders. 

August 2020

25th - 45 Highway Projects in Madhya Pradesh; Projects include road length of 1361 kilometres worth Rs 11,427 crore

17th - 13 Highway Projects and Inaugurates a Road Safety Project in Manipur. These projects involve a Road length of 316 kilometres, with a construction value of about Rs 3,000 crore.

July 2020

31st - Refurbished upstream carriageway of Mahatma Gandhi Setu in Bihar dedicated to the nation

14th - Union Minister inaugurates and lays foundation stones of new economic corridor projects worth about Rs 20,000 crore in Haryana

June 2020

18th - India will be a manufacturing hub for electric vehicles within five years, says Nitin Gadkari

May 2020

26th - Border Roads Organisation (BRO) achieved a major milestone by digging up a 440 m long Tunnel below the busy Chamba town on Rishikesh-Dharasu road Highway (NH 94). This is a Horseshoe type tunnel with 10 mtr carriageway width and 5.5 mtr vertical clearance. The sanctioned cost of this tunnel is 107.07 Crore. The awarded cost is Rs 86 Crore, including 43 Crore for Tunnel and 43 Crore for 4.2 Km approach roads to the tunnel.

March 2020

1st - Rules published for protection of Good Samaritans

2nd - Central Accident Database Management System launched in 6 states. 

5th - A new section 110A has been inserted through the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 2019, August

17th - 13 Highway Projects and Inaugurates a Road Safety Project in Manipur. These projects involve a Road length of 316 kilometres, with a construction value of about Rs 3000 crore.

25th - 45 Highway Projects in Madhya Pradesh; Projects include road length of 1361 kilometres worth Rs 11427 crore


NIA Arrest Absconding Khalistani Gurjeet Singh Nijjar in Pune Khalistan Case


NIA on 22nd December 2020 arrested absconding Khalistani terrorist Gurjeet Singh Nijjar, who was hiding in Cyprus (Europe), at New Delhi Airport.

The background of the case is that NIA had registered a case No. RC-01/2019/NIA/MUM dated 10.01.2019 against accused Harpal Singh under Section 3 & 25 of the Arms Act, 1959 read with sections 37 & 135 of the Maharashtra Police Act, 1951 and section 20 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.

The investigation has revealed that the absconding accused Gurjeet Singh Nijjar was the main conspirator of this case. Accused Gurjeet Singh Nijjar, Harpal Singh and Moin Khan were active on Social Media platforms and hatched a criminal conspiracy to revive Sikh militancy for the ultimate aim of formation of a separate state of Khalistan.

The investigation further revealed that as part of the conspiracy of separate 'Khalistan State' accused Gurjeet Singh Nijjar, accused Harpal Singh and accused Moin Khan used to post videos and images containing praises of militant Jagtar Singh Hawara (a convicted accused in the assassination of Beant Singh, Former Chief Minister of Punjab), images and videos of Operation Blue Star of 1984 and pro-Khalistani posts related to proscribed organisation Babbar Khalsa International (BKI) with sole intention to motivate like-minded Sikh youths and others to join the Khalistan "movement".

The investigation has also revealed that Moin Khan was in Tihar Jail during 2013 to 2016 and during this period Moin Khan developed contact with Jagtar Singh Hawara, and shown his willingness to work for him and shared his contact number with him. Subsequently, as planned, accused Moin Khan sent a friend request to Facebook ID "Khalistani Jindabad Khalistan" from his Facebook account. By joining this Facebook account, Moin Khan came in contact with Harpal Singh and Gurjeet Singh Nijjar.

Accused Gurjeet Singh Nijjar motivated Moin Khan by discussing about atrocities committed against the Muslims and Sikhs in India and convinced him to work for separate 'Khalistan State'. In furtherance of the conspiracy, accused Gurjeet Singh Nijjar directed Moin Khan to purchase a pistol and ammunition in 2018 and to carry out their nefarious designs.

On 23rd May 2019, the NIA had filed the Charge Sheet in the NIA Special Court against the wanted accused Gurjeet Singh Nijjar, accused Harpal Singh, Moin Khan and Sundar Lal Parashar.

During the investigation, it was revealed that wanted accused Gurjeet Singh Nijjar R/o. Village – Pandori Sukha Singh, Tehsil – Ajnala, District- Amritsar left India on 19th October 2017 for Cyprus. Accordingly, a Look-Out Circular (LOC) was issued against him. On 22nd December 2020, Wanted Accused Gurjeet Singh Nijjar was detained
at Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi and he was arrested by NIA at New Delhi. His transit custody shall be obtained and he shall be taken to Mumbai for further investigation.

#PuneKhalistanCase #NIA

Droughts in India influenced by North Atlantic air currents


Nearly half of the droughts that occurred during the Indian summer monsoon season in the past century may have been driven by atmospheric disturbances from the North Atlantic region, finds a new study published in Science. It was carried out by researchers at the Centre for Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (CAOS), Indian Institute of Science (IISc). 

More than a billion people depend on the annual Indian summer monsoon, which brings copious rain to large swathes of the country between June and September. When it fails, and most of the country is plunged into drought, the usual suspect is El Niño, a recurring climate event during which abnormally warm equatorial Pacific waters pull moisture-laden clouds away from the Indian subcontinent. But 10 out of 23 droughts that India faced in the past century have occurred during years when El Niño was absent. What, then, could have caused these droughts? 

The IISc study shows that these droughts were a consequence of a sudden and steep drop in rainfall in late August. This drop was linked to an atmospheric disturbance in the midlatitude region over the North Atlantic Ocean, creating a pattern of atmospheric currents that swoop in over the subcontinent and “derail” the monsoon. 

“As early as the 1980s, people have looked at these droughts individually. But they have not collated and pooled them together, and deduced that these droughts may all have a different type of evolution than El Niño droughts, as well as a common cause, which is this midlatitude influence,” says V Venugopal, Associate Professor at CAOS and one of the senior authors of the paper.  

The research team looked closely at daily rainfall during both El Niño and non-El Niño drought years, and noticed stark differences in their patterns between June and September. 

The droughts that happen during an El Niño year follow a standard pattern. The rainfall deficit, departure from a long-term average, sets in early around mid-June and becomes progressively worse. By mid-August, the deficit spreads across the country and there is no going back from a drought. 

Surprisingly, the droughts during the non-El Niño years, when analysed together, also seemed to follow a common pattern. First, there was a moderate slump in June. Then, during mid-July to mid-August, the peak of the season, the monsoon showed signs of recovery and the rainfall amount increased. However, around the third week of August, there was a sudden steep decline in rainfall, which resulted in drought conditions. 

“The question was: why does the break occur this late in August?” says Jai Sukhatme, Associate Professor at CAOS and another author. “We tried to see if we could trace it back to a forcing agent or system that influences the behaviour over India. We looked at the winds that were prevalent in these non-El Niño drought years.”

That was when the researchers noticed an unusual atmospheric disturbance in the midlatitudes. It emerged from winds in the upper atmosphere interacting with a deep cyclonic circulation above abnormally cold North Atlantic waters. The resulting wave of air currents, called a Rossby wave, curved down from the North Atlantic, squeezed in by the Tibetan plateau, and hit the Indian subcontinent around mid-August, suppressing rainfall and throwing off the monsoon that was trying to recover from the June slump. The wave’s usual course is to go from west to east, but not towards the equator, explains Sukhatme. “This inward curving was the peculiar thing that we noticed during these particular years.” 

The findings underscore the importance of also considering influences on the Indian monsoon from outside the tropics, which current forecast models focus heavily on. “The Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean seem to be at the forefront of all discussions surrounding Indian monsoon droughts,” says Venugopal. “It is perhaps time to focus just as much on midlatitude influences, which might aid in getting a better handle on enhanced predictability of monsoon variability.” 


Spatial patterns of the build-up of rainfall deficit over 20-day time periods from June through September for the two kinds of Indian monsoon droughts: El Niño droughts (top six panels; (A)-(F)) and Non-El Niño droughts (bottom six panels; (G)-(L)). Comparing panels (J) and (K), one can see the abruptness and intensity of the late August rainfall deficit.

#CAOS #Drought

ICC releases latest T20I Batting Rankings


The International Cricket Counci (ICC) has released the latest T20I Batting Rankings.

Virat Kohli and KL Rahul have moved up a spot in the top 10.

Meanwhile, Dawid Malan tops the list and Babar Azam stands at the second position.

#ViratKohli #KLRahul #Cricket