In recent days, the novel coronavirus pandemic has left many countries reeling. In India there have been over a thousand cases, while neighbouring Pakistan has seen around 1,625 cases.

With people being urged to stay at home to avoid the spread of the virus, governments have taken a slew of measures to provide aid. But even as relief measures are being announced allegations have surfaced that Hindus in different parts of Pakistan have been denied food and other essential supplies. Continue reading


The Hindustan Aeronautics Limited has pledged Rs 20 crore from its CSR fund to the Prime Ministers Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations (PM-CARES) Fund.

In addition, the Bengaluru-headquartered defence PSUs employees have pledged their one day salary amounting to Rs. 6.25 crore. “This is a small step from HAL in supporting the Governments ongoing efforts in the fight against the novel Corona virus pandemic, HAL CMD R Madhavan, said. Continue reading


RSS-affiliate Swadeshi Jagran Manch (SJM) has urged the Narendra Modi government not to import from China any personal protective equipment (PPE) such as masks, eye gear, and testing kits and ventilators to fight the Covid-19 outbreak. Speaking to ThePrint, SJM national co-convener Ashwini Mahajan said China’s equipment and ventilators are not trustworthy, and that India should not rely on Chinese products in this critical time.

The SJM also wrote to the B.S. Yediyurappa government in Karnataka last week, urging it not to import “faulty” Chinese Covid-19 testing kits. Continue reading


The Indian Army on Monday dismissed as “fake” certain messages circulating on social media about likely imposition of Emergency in the country next month to deal with the coronavirus outbreak. Army officials also said no effort is being initiated to rope in services of retired personnel, the National Cadet Corps and the volunteers enrolled under the National Service Scheme in the wake of the coronavirus crisis

“Fake and malicious messages are circulating on social media about likely declaration of emergency in mid-April and employment of #IndianArmy, #Veterans, NCC and NSS to assist the civil administration,” the Army’s Additional Director General of Public Information (ADGPI) tweeted. Continue reading

SOURCE: DailyExcelsior

Army personnel have decontaminated the premises of Command Hospital in the city and identified those that came in contact with a doctor there who have tested positive for COVID-19, an official statement said here on Monday.People found to have come in direct contact with the doctor were relocated to a separate quarantine facility with full medical and administration support, it said.

The army doctor, who had travelled to Delhi between March 12 and 17 and participated in professional discussions in the national capital, had tested positive for COVID-19 at the Eastern Command Hospital on March 29. Continue reading


The ongoing struggle against novel Coronavirus has brought to the fore the herculean task that the Covid-19 fighters are facing. Healthcare providers, essential services providers, sanitation workers etc. are central to this struggle and it is only fit that the country paused for a few minutes on 22 nd March to express their gratitude collectively.

However, not many people know that the first line of defence against Covid-19 is the Indian Armed Forces. It was the Indian Air Force (IAF) that evacuated 112 people from Wuhan on 26 th February and 58 more from Iran on 10 th March. This timely evacuation was appreciated by many countries including the US Department of State’s Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs that complimented the IAF for the same. Continue reading


The Railway Board has instructed zonal railways that they might be required to convert up to 20,000 coaches into isolation wards as part of its preparedness to fight the coronavirus outbreak.

In a letter to all the zonal general managers on Monday, the board has said that initially 5,000 coaches will be converted. It also said that the railways has held consultations with Armed Forces Medical Services, medical departments of various zonal railways, and Ayushman Bharat before taking the decision. Continue reading


To cater to the requirement of oxygen supply for multiple patients during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, personnel from Naval Dockyard Visakhapatnam has designed an innovative ‘portable multi-feed oxygen manifold (MOM)’ using a six-way radial header fitted to a single cylinder.

After successful trials, the dockyard has started manufacturing of the oxygen cylinder that can cater to six patients at one time. This innovation would enable one oxygen cylinder to supply to six patients concurrently, thus enabling critical care management to a larger number of COVID-19 patients with the existing limited resources. Continue reading


The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Monday approved the first indigenously developed Coronavirus test kit by the country’s premier research and development organization DRDO. The test will cost Rs 1,200 against the present cost of Rs 4,500 per test. The Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) has devised several indigenous equipments including multiple-use ventilators, isolation tubes, bodysuits for doctors and N95 masks to fight COVID-19.

1. Ventilators
Since the COVID-19 virus also affects pulmonary functions, DRDO has also developed a wide range of other products like critical care ventilators. The Defence Bio-Engineering & Electro Medical Laboratory (DEBEL), Bengaluru, a DRDO lab, has identified a vendor to produce ventilators. The DRDO in a statement said that Innovation is on to create a ‘Multi patient-ventilator’ wherein several patients can be supported by a single ventilator. This innovation is expected to be available within a week. Approximately 5,000 ventilators will be produced in the first month and 10,000 subsequently. Each ventilator unit will cost around Rs 4 lakh. Continue reading


Twin-engine Medium Class Omni-Role Combat Aircraft (ORCA) or Twin Engine Deck Based Fighter (TEDBF) program born out of the necessity of the carrier-based requirements of the Indian Navy after it rejected plans to develop a single-engine fighter jet based on the LCA-Navy Mk2 concept which was rejected by the Navy due to various reasons but the questions remains will IAF will be part of the project which is not planned by it?

The timeline of the different developmental programs of fighter jets in India makes TEDBF/ORCA fall into two major programs which ADA along with HAL is developing for the air force, which is MWF-Mk2 and AMCA fighter jet programs respectfully. Air Force hopes MWF-Mk2 program will fill the bulk of the gap which will become void once Mirage and Mig-29 fleet could leave making it one of the prime and possibly the last 4.5 generation fighter jet initiated anywhere in the world. Continue reading


Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) recently conducted maiden test flight of its Light Combat Aircraft Tejas in Final Operational Clearance-standard. The jet bearing number SP-21 was piloted by Air Cmde. K A Muthana (Retd), Chief Test Flying (Fixed Wing) of HAL. The aircraft took-off from HAL Airport and was airborne for 40 minutes.

“HAL achieved the momentous feat within a record time of 12 months after release of Drawing Applicability List (DAL) and SOP (Standard Operating Procedure) by CEMILAC”, the statement said. The FOC Tejas is said to be more advanced and was developed with improvements suggested after inducting LCA IOC in IAF. “It imbibes a lot of manufacturing improvements which were based on the operational feedback of LCA IOC (Initial Operational Clearance) fleet with IAF”, HAL said. Continue reading


The U.S. Air Force has cancelled Phase-I of its flagship multilateral air exercise, Red Flag, scheduled in Alaska from April 30. The Indian Air Force (IAF) was to take part in the exercise with its Sukhoi Su-30 fighter jets, defence sources said. “We got communication that Red Flag Alaska 20-1, scheduled from April 30 to May 15, has been cancelled due to COVID-19,” a defence source said. The U.S. Pacific Air Fleet said on its website that the exercise was cancelled owing to the travel restrictions imposed by the U.S. Department of Defence.

In the past, the IAF deployed Su-30MKI and Jaguar strike aircraft, the Il-78 tankers and the C-17 strategic airlift aircraft. The IAF joined Red Flag for the first time in 2008 in Nevada. However, it had said it would not take part in every edition of the biennial exercise because of the high cost involved. Continue reading


Amid COVID-19 outbreak, thousands of needy gathered at Rehrri Ghoth in Karachi to receive food supplies and daily essentials. However, those who belong to the Hindu community were told to go back since the rations were only meant for Muslims. Sindh government issued order to distribute ration in lockdown through local NGOs and administration to daily wage workers and labourers. The distribution of food supplies was organised by local government in collaboration with the district government.

Hindus were told that they were not eligible for having food supplies since it was only meant for Muslims, informed activists. No screening arrangements were provided for nearly 3,000 people who had gathered to collect rations. Hindus in Lyari, Sachal Ghoth and other parts of Karachi as well as all over Sindh are being denied a share in government food. Continue reading


On March 25, terrorists, reportedly affiliated to the Islamic State, stormed one the oldest gurdwara in Afghanistan’s capital city of Kabul, killing 25 people. This was one of the worst attacks faced by the small Afghan minority community in the recent times. The Sikhs, once an integral part of Afghanistan, started suffering under the Mujahideen regime in the 80s, followed by the Taliban rule. Thousands of Sikhs fled their homes to Pakistan and India.

The better off went to Canada and the UK. The once vibrant populations in Nangarhar, Logan, Herat, Jalalabad, Kabul and Kandahar were soon reduced to a handful. “Once, Baisakhi was celebrated with a huge mela at Jalalabad, people would come from all over and the entire area would be covered with tents. Hundreds of marriages would be solmenised there,” reminisces Pal Singh, who fled Kabul in 1993 without even a roti to eat. A trader in New Delhi now, he has no plans of ever returning home. “That life is gone. It will never return.” Continue reading


Easily Vereshchagin was the court painter of Général Konstantin Petrovich von Kaufmann, the man who captured central Asia for the Tsar in the mid-1800s. Vasily’s brilliant paintings of what was then collectively called Turkestan, captured the Russian public imagination — showing audiences back in Sankt-Petersburg the ‘barbarism’ or ‘exoticness’ of these Asian regions and why Holy Mother Russia needed to extend her ‘benevolence’ to this region.

Vasily’s paintings set in motion the Orientalist phase of Russian art, where every Tsar wanted something Oriental (central/south Asian) in his palace. The most glorious of this being parts of the Yusupov Palace (the same Yusupovs who assassinated Rasputin and were rumoured to be richer than the tsar). The public also embraced this Orientalist phase with the most prominent Russian composers incorporating faux Oriental themes in their music, be it Aleksandr Borodin’s stunning Polovtsian dances in the opera Prince Igor, or the incredibly dramatic Scheherazade by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. Continue reading