Topic: Modi warns bitcoin could ’spoil’ young Indians
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday warned that bitcoin presents a risk to younger generations, sounding a hawkish tone as his government prepares to introduce legislation to regulate cryptocurrencies.
Speaking at an online cybersecurity forum, Modi framed virtual money as a domain that needs to be closely policed.
"Take cryptocurrency or bitcoin, for example," he told a forum hosted by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute. "It is important that all democratic nations work together on this and ensure it does not end up in the wrong hands, which can spoil our youths."
An Indian couple is under investigation over a chartered flight linked to their wedding 一對印度夫妻因婚禮包機而遭調查
The authorities in southern India are investigating a couple who are reported to have chartered a plane and performed a marriage ritual in midair in front of scores of guests, a breach of Covid-19 guidelines in a country that is being devastated by a second wave of the coronavirus.
The couple had intended to tie the knot in front of family and friends at a hotel in the southern state of Tamil Nadu, but coronavirus restrictions capped the guest list at 50 people.
Instead, according to reports in the Indian news media, the couple chartered a commercial aircraft and boarded the plane on Sunday morning along with about 160 people.
根據印度新聞媒體的報導，這對夫妻因而改包下一架民航機，並於週日一早與大約160名賓客登機。Source article: https://features.ltn.com.tw/english/article/paper/1491482; https://features.ltn.com.tw/english/article/paper/1489242
Topic: Water-Stressed India Seeks a Tap for Every Home
The pipes are laid, the taps installed and the village tank is under construction — all promising signs that, come spring, Girja Ahriwar will get water at her doorstep and finally shed a lifelong burden.
“I go out and put the jerrycans in the queue at around 5 a.m. and wait there with the children,” Ahriwar, a mother of three who lives in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, said about her routine of fetching from the village hand pump. “Sometimes it could take five or six hours. I have to stay there
because if I leave, someone else moves ahead.”
India, one of the world’s most water-stressed countries, is halfway through an ambitious drive to provide clean tap water by 2024 to all of the roughly 192 million households across its 600,000 villages. About 18,000 government engineers are overseeing the $50 billion undertaking, which includes hundreds of thousands of contractors and laborers who are laying more than 2.5 million miles of pipe.
The project has a powerful champion in Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has slashed through India’s notorious red tape and pushed aside thorny political divisions to see it through. His success thus far helps explain his dominance over the country’s political landscape.
Modi has remained popular despite a weak economy and a bungled initial response to the coronavirus that left hundreds of thousands dead. He has increasingly relied on communal politics, continuing to consolidate a Hindu nationalist base he has worked for decades to rally.
But the mission to deliver water to every household combines two of Modi’s political strengths: his grasp of the day-to-day problems of hundreds of millions of India’s poor and his penchant for ambitious solutions. Modi, who grew up in a poor village, has spoken emotionally about his own mother’s hardship in fetching water.
About one-sixth of India’s households had a clean water tap when the program, called Jal Jeevan Mission, began in 2019. Now, almost half have one.
“You rarely have this drive from the government, the head of state, and it is well funded. Behind the concept, there is budget,” said Nicolas Osbert, who leads the UNICEF water and sanitation unit in India. “All social sectors were impacted by COVID. Not this one. This one was preserved.”
The country’s water problem speaks to the mismatch between its global economic ambitions and the dire conditions of much of its 1.4 billion population, two-thirds of whom still live in rural areas.
這個國家的用水問題顯示，其全球經濟野心和14億人口中許多人的悲慘情況，頗不相配。印度人口三分之二住在鄉村地區。Source article: https://udn.com/news/story/6904/6034821
Topic: India’s Harnaaz Sandhu is crowned Miss Universe 2021
Harnaaz Sandhu of India was crowned Miss Universe 2021 on Sunday, marking the end of a controversial pageant hosted in southern Israel.
The pageant was held in the resort city of Eilat, with 80 women from around the world competing for the crown. Sunday night was the last day of the competition, with eliminations narrowing down the number of finalists until the last two remained.
Nadia Ferreira of Paraguay and Lalela Mswane of South Africa were the first and second runners-up, respectively.
The South African government withdrew its support and called on Mswane to drop out, citing Israeli treatment of Palestinians, calling it "apartheid," a charge Israel has vehemently denied.
Topic: Elephants in India enjoy fruit feast ahead of World Elephant Day 印度大象在「世界大象日」前享用水果大餐
After an evening walk under overcast skies with rains not far away, elephants rescued from circuses and temples in India are treated to a feast of their favorite fruits and vegetables to celebrate World Elephant Day, which falls on Aug. 12.
A lavish spread of watermelons, bananas, papayas and pumpkins is laid out for the Asian elephants at a sanctuary near the banks of the Yamuna River.
Most of the 28 elephants at the center suffer from chronic illness and various ailments ranging from abscesses, cataracts, blindness and joint pain, the result of years of abuse in captivity.
The number of wild Asiatic elephants, primarily found in India and parts of South and Southeast Asia, has fallen to under 50,000, just 15% of its historic average, according to the World Wide Fund for Nature.
根據世界自然基金會，主要生活在印度、部分南亞和東南亞地區的亞洲象，數量已降至5萬頭以下，僅歷史平均數量的15％。Source article: https://features.ltn.com.tw/english/article/paper/1501152 ; https://news.ltn.com.tw/news/world/paper/1467645