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Monday Morning News Brief, April 30

Apr 30, 2018
Monday morning brief Apr 30 2018
Good morning!
Here’s everything you need to know to start your day…
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa) images of the past ten days show that large parts of India are dotted with fires. In sweltering summer, these fires are intensifying heat and causing black carbon (a component of soot with high global warming effect) pollution. Agricultural scientists are linking the massive rise in the incidence of crop fires in recent years to the dependence of farmers on combine harvesters, which leave a short stubble behind.
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The Centre’s drive towards higher compliance has helped it garner additional Rs 1.5 lakh crore in direct taxes during 2017-18. The tax department, however, is chasing 65 lakh people who it suspects did not file returns last year as it hopes to expand the taxpayer base to over 9.3 crore. The efforts have helped the government expand the taxpayer base with the authorities expecting an addition of over 1.5 crore new entities during 2017-18 and expanding the base, net of exits by over 12 per cent.
India and China are set to establish a hotline between top commanders as well as resuming military exchanges and exercises along the LAC. “There will be some cooling down of operational tensions, which spiked during the Doklam crisis near the Sikkim-Bhutan-Tibet trijunction last year and have carried on till now. There are enough mechanisms in place, from banner drills, flag meetings to the WMCC (working mechanism for consultation and coordination) and diplomatic channels, to manage and defuse faceoffs,” a senior officer said.
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Pakistan’s interior ministry has removed the chief prosecutor from the 26/11 case for his ‘unbiased and independent’ approach towards the issue. An official of Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) said special prosecutor Chaudhry Azhar “was keen to follow the high-profile case by book.” Azhar had developed differences with the government over the “manner” the case was being pursued, the FIA official added. The move comes two days after the US urged Pakistan to fully cooperate with India to investigate the Mumbai attacks.
North Korea would abandon nuclear weapons if the US agrees to formally end the Korean War and promise not to invade the country, Kim Jong-un has said. In a confidence-building gesture before a proposed summit meeting with President Donald Trump, a conciliatory Kim also said he would invite experts and journalists from South Korea and the United States to watch the shutdown next month of his country’s only known underground nuclear test site.
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