Top headlines: India aims to double gas pipeline; SC clears Central Vista

Supreme Court
Serum, Bharat Biotech reconcile, pledge to work together

Serum Institute and Bharat Biotech on Tuesday announced their "combined intent" to supply Covid-19 vaccines for India, issuing a joint statement after a controversy over their shots. "The more important task right now is of saving the lives and livelihoods of populations in India and around the world," said the statement signed by Serum Institute CEO Adar Poonawalla and Krishna Ella, chairperson of Bharat Biotech.

Union Budget on Feb 1

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will present the Union Budget on February 1 a day after Parliament meets on January 29 with protocols in place for the coronavirus pandemic, said media reports on Tuesday. The Budget session would be held in two parts: from January 29 to February 15 and then from March 8 to April 8, news agency PTI reported quoting sources on the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs' recommendations. Read here

SC nod to Central Vista

In a majority verdict, the Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld theenvironmental clearance and notification for change in land use for the Central Vista Project. The Central Vista revamp, announced in September, 2019 envisages a new triangular Parliament building, with seating capacity for 900 to 1,200 MPs, that is to be constructed by August, 2022 when the country will be celebrating its 75th Independence Day. Read here

India will double pipeline network: Modi 

India will soon double its existing pipeline network according to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Speaking at a ceremony to mark the completion of the 450-kilometre-long Kochi-Mangaluru pipeline, Modi said, “The first interstate natural gas pipeline of the country was commissioned in 1987, and by 2014, India had 15,000 kilometres of natural gas pipeline built. Today there are over 16,000 kilometres of new gas pipelines being worked upon. This work is going to be complete in the next 5 to 6 years.” Read here

China condemns former high-flying finance executive to death
A former chairman of one of China’s biggest bad debt managers was condemned to death over charges of corruption, marking a rare sentence in President Xi Jinping’s efforts to tighten control over the economy and rein in malfeasance. Lai Xiaomin, who was chairman of China Huarong Asset Management Co. before he came under investigation in 2018, was sentenced to death for taking bribes as well as bigamy, according to a local court. He was found guilty of receiving 1.79 billion yuan ($277 million) in bribes between 2008 and 2018, according to the court of Tianjin City. All his personal assets will be confiscated, the ruling said. Read here

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