Daily Bulletin: Saudi crown prince on India visit, DMK-Congress to announce pact, India to counter Pakistan in ICJ; day's top stories

  • Hot in the heels of Imran Khan's response to the Pulwama attack, India has lashed out at the Pakistan prime minister’s countercharge on the attack

  • India and Saudi Arabia look to enhance their defence ties and the former hopes of at least a $1-billion investment in infrastructure and farming sectors

  • Xiaomi, Samsung and Vivo are all going to be unveiling their respective smartphones today

Differences sharpened as MEA slams Imran Khan's response to Pulwama attack

Hot in the heels of Imran Khan's much awaited response to the Pulwama attack on 14 February, India has lashed out at the Pakistan prime minister’s countercharge on the attack.

The Ministry of External Affairs has rejected Khan’s offer to probe the act of terror, saying: "In the horrific attack in Mumbai on 26/11, proof was provided to Pakistan. Despite this, the case has not progressed for more than 10 years."

Imran had said that he hoped "better sense will prevail" on the Indian side as he believes that only dialogue and talks are the solutions to the Kashmir issue which has long since been the bone of contention between the two countries. The ministry said that India is not surprised by his refusal to acknowledge the reality of Pakistani terror activities.

Responding to Imran's demand for proof of a Pakistani national's involvement in the Pulwama attack, the MEA said, "It's a well-known fact that Jaish-e-Mohammad and its leader Masood Azhar are based in Pakistan. These should be sufficient proof for Pakistan to take action."

India likely to bring up Pakistan's terror role in talks with Saudi crown prince

 Daily Bulletin: Saudi crown prince on India visit, DMK-Congress to announce pact, India to counter Pakistan in ICJ; days top stories

Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman and Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday. Twitter/@MEAIndia

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammed bin Salman is in New Delhi for his first ever visit to the country. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who received him at Palam airport on Tuesday, in a special gesture signifying the importance India attaches to the visit by the leader of the powerful Gulf nation. Modi is likely to raise the issue of Pakistan-sponsored terror in bilateral talks with the prince on Wednesday.

Bin Salman visited Pakistan on Monday. India and Saudi Arabia also look to enhance their defence ties and the former hopes of at least a $1-billion investment in the country's infrastructure and farming sectors.

The visit by bin Salman, who is also the vice-president of Saudi Arabia's council of ministers, follows the "highly-successful" trip of Modi to that country in April 2016, during which the two sides agreed to further elevate existing strategic partnership, the MEA had said.

Congress to announce poll pact with DMK

A day after the Bharatiya Janata Party and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) announced their alliance and seat-sharing pact for Tamil Nadu, the Congress is set to announce its alliance deal for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls with the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) on Wednesday.

Union Minister Piyush Goyal, while addressing the media along with Tamil Nadu chief minister E Palaniswami and deputy chief minister O Panneerselvam, said that the NDA will fight and "win" in all 40 seats in Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. The two parties subsequently also brought the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) into the fold.

Aero India show to take off today

The 12th edition of Asia's premier air show, Aero India 2019 will begin at Bengaluru’s Yelahanka on Wednesday. The five-day long biennial event, which will showcase India's air defence prowess, will also act as a platform for aviation companies, the defence sector and the government to forge new alliances and contracts.

The Sukhoi SU-30, the Rafale, the F-16 Fighting Falcon, the F/A-18 Super Hornet and the mighty B-52 Stratofortress bomber will be part of the air show. On Tuesday, a pilot died after  two Indian Air Force Surya Kiran jets crashed mid air during a practice run ahead of the show.

India to counter Pakistan’s submission at ICJ

Pakistan on Tuesday had urged the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to dismiss India's plea in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case, as it accused India of using the top United Nations’ court to enact a "political theatre".

The four-day hearing in the Jadhav case had opened on Monday at the ICJ headquarters in The Hague amidst heightened tensions between India and Pakistan following one of the worst terror attacks in Jammu and Kashmir by Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad terror group that killed at least 40 CRPF soldiers. On the first day of hearing, India had urged the ICJ to annul Jadhav's death sentence.

"India, I am sorry to say, has demonstrated a lack of faith throughout these proceedings... good faith is part of international law," lawyer Khawar Qureshi said on Tuesday.

India will make a counter argument in reply on Wednesday.

Barcelona held by Lyon; Liverpool-Bayern Munich play out goalless draw

Barcelona were unable to break down Lyon in the first leg of their last-16 Champions League encounter late on Tuesday. The Catalan giants had 25 shots, yet a goal evaded them.

Elsewhere at Anfield, Liverpool managed to hold Bayern to a goalless draw as well.

Delhi, Kerala demand no major decision in GST Council meet today

Kerala and AAP-ruled Delhi on Tuesday demanded deferment the GST Council meeting scheduled for Wednesday, saying a decision on "crucial issues" of GST rates on real estate sector and lottery should not be taken through a video conference meet. The finance ministry, however, has issued a media advisory stating that the 33rd GST Council meeting will be held on 20 February.

In a letter to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia said that such "crucial issues" cannot be discussed through a video conference and convening a physical meeting is important to take a consolidated decision.

Kerala finance minister Thomas Isaac too said that decision on the important issue of GST on lottery cannot be taken without a fair discussion and the lottery being included in Council agenda only a day before the meeting is unfair.

Three major smartphones to launch today

Xiaomi, Samsung and Vivo are all going to be unveiling their respective smartphones on Wednesday.

For Samsung, it is their flagship S10-series smartphone lineup and the event will be held in San Francisco.

Xiaomi will be announcing its first flagship of 2019, called the Mi 9 in China and Vivo will be launching its second pop-up camera smartphone, called the Vivo V15 Pro, which will be announced at an event in Delhi.

We will be doing comparisons, live blogs and opinion pieces for all these smartphones so stay tuned to Firstpost.

Chanel names Virginie Viard as successor following Karl Lagerfeld's death

Chanel announced that Virginie Viard, director of Chanel's Fashion Creation Studio, will take over as Karl Lagerfeld's successor after the German-born designer's death at the age of 85 on Tuesday. Viard has worked alongside the legendary designer for close to 30 years and was considered Lagerfeld's right hand woman at Chanel.

The news of Lagerfeld's death left many in the fashion and cinema industry heartbroken.

Updated Date: Feb 20, 2019 07:45:44 IST