Top News of January 4: Drugs Controller General of India on Monday granted permission to Serum Institute of India to manufacture its COVID-19 vaccine ‘Covishield’. Yesterday, DCGI had approved Covishield and indigenously developed Covaxin of Bharat Biotech for restricted emergency use in the country. Also Read - Every Second Person in Delhi Infected With COVID-19, Latest Sero-survey Shows Signs of Herd Immunity

On the other hand, the Centre will hold its crucial seventh round of talks at 2 pm today with the protesting farmers who have been agitating at various borders of the national capital for over a month demanding repeal of the new agricultural reforms. Also Read - After Tractor Rally on Republic Day, Protesting Farmers to March Towards Parliament on Budget Day

For more such breaking and latest news stay tuned to India.com as it brings all the happening news and events of the day. Also Read - Awaiting Centre's Instructions: Delhi Govt on 'Free Vaccine For All' Promise

23.30 pm: No new case of COVID-19 reported in Andaman and Nicobar Islands today, two patients recovered; total 38 active cases in the union territory: Administration.

23.00 pm: 

22.30 pm: Customs department serves notice to K Ayyappan, Assistant Private Secretary to the Kerala Assembly Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan in dollar smuggling case. Customs asked him to appear before it’s Kochi office before 10 am tomorrow.

21.45 pm:

21.20 pm: As India assumes the membership of the Security Council for the eighth time, it is an honour for me as the Permanent Representative of India to take part in today’s flag installation ceremony: TS Tirumurti, Permanent Representative of India to UN at Flag Ceremony at UNSC

21.00 pm: Light rain/drizzle would continue to prevail over & adjoining areas of few places of Delhi (North, North-West, West & South-West), Jhunjunu, Khairthal (Rajasthan), Bawal, Rewari, Bhiwani, Farukhnagar, Jhajjar (in Haryana) during next 2 hours (issued at 9:30 pm): IMD

20.25 pm: 

20.00 pm: Vivek Singh, a private person, has been appointed as Officer on Special Duty (OSD) to Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman at the level of Deputy Secretary for a period of 4 years.

19.15 pm: Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh (in file pic) who is also the Chairman of Joint Committee of Maharashtra Legislative Assembly and Council, has invited suggestions and amendments to Shakti Bills from the general public by 5 pm on 15th January 2021.

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18.45 pm: I’m in favour of farmers & want withdrawal of these three bills for the sake of the country & farmers. Before the bills came in, they had godowns made. Their political intention is clear & that’s why they are not taking it back: West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee

18.30 pm: Looking at today’s discussion, I hope that we will have a meaningful discussion during our next meeting and we will come to a conclusion: Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar

18.00 pm:  The meeting between agitating farmer leaders and government concludes at Vigyan Bhawan. The next round of talks to be held at 2 pm on January 8.

17.30 pm: Congress constitutes a 4 member committee in the chairmanship of West Bengal Congress chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury to hold talks with Left parties regarding seat-sharing and joint programmes for West Bengal Assembly elections.

17.00 pm: Approval of COVAXIN for emergency use is a giant leap for innovation & novel product development in India. It is a proud moment for the nation & a great milestone in India’s scientific capability, a kickstart to the innovation ecosystem in India: Bharat Biotech MD Krishna Ella

16.30 pm: United Kingdom judge rules WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange should not be extradited to the United States: Reuters

16.00 pm: Punjab Govt managed to clear the illegal encroachments at 18946 acres of forest area thereby resulting in an overall increase in the forest cover in the state by 2872 acres: State Forest Minister Sadhu Singh Dharamsot

15.15 pm: I personally feel we haven’t done anything important for Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose after independence. I’ve written a letter to Center to declare 23rd January, birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, as a national holiday. It is my demand: West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee

14:55 PM: Kerala High Court sets aside the order passed by Special NIA Court Kochi granting bail to Thalassery-based law students Alan Shuhaib & Thaha Fasal who were arrested under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in Kozhikode in November 2019.

14:31 PM: Income Tax Department is recording the statement of Robert Vadra in connection with Benami Property Case, said Sources

14:10 PM: Indian Air Force (IAF) helicopters continue operations to douse the fire in Dzouku Valley near Kohima, Nagaland.

14:00 PM: Mumbai Sessions Court sentences Gangster Chhota Rajan and three others to two-year imprisonment in connection with an extortion case.

13:45 PM: A delegation of farmer leaders arrive at Vigyan Bhawan for talks with Union Government on the three Farm Laws “We hope there is a breakthrough in this meeting in the new year,” says a farmer leader

12:39 PM: I have decided that I will not get vaccinated, for now, first it should be administered to others. My turn should come afterward, we have to work to ensure that priority groups are administered with the vaccine, said Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan

12:38 PM: Tamil Nadu Government permits to increase the seating capacity of cinemas, theatres, multiplexes from existing 50% to 100% following COVID-19 protocols.

12:28 PM: I am hopeful that we will find a positive solution today. We will discuss all issues in the meeting, said Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar on today’s talks with farmers.

12:20 PM: BJP MP Pragya Singh Thakur to appear before Special NIA Court today, in connection with 2008 Malegaon blast case The Court had ordered all accused to be present before it today.

12:07 PM: Kerala High Court grants bail to Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) MLA MC Kamaruddin in connection with the three cases registered against him in the fashion gold jewellery investment scam.

12:05 PM: An earthquake of magnitude 3.5 on the Richter Scale hit Bandipora in Jammu and Kashmir at 10:58 am today: National Center for Seismology.

12:00 PM: Supreme Court says it will hear next week a PIL seeking urgent steps to protect the forest and wildlife, in the wake of the forest fires in Uttarakhand. PIL seeks directions to Central and state government to frame a policy to prevent wildfires in Uttarakhand.

11:34: Today, India is among the top 50 countries in global innovation ranking. The collaboration between industry and institutions is being strengthened in India: PM Narendra Modi

11:33 AM: We have to ensure that there is not only global demand but also global acceptance of ‘Make in India’ products. We have to strengthen brand India on the basis of quality and credibility, said PM.

11:32 AM: The Indian scientists have been successful in coming up with two ‘made in India’ COVID19 vaccines. The country is proud of its scientists, said PM Modi during the inaugural address at National Metrology Conclave.

11:30 AM: Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurates National Atomic Timescale and Bhartiya Nirdeshak Dravya, via video conferencing.

11:02 AM: Haryana Chief Minister ML Khattar is allowing to fire upon farmers and using tear gas against them like General Dyer. Are the country’s farmers our enemies? Are the Army personnel of China or Pakistan? It’s shameful, said Aam Aadmi Party leader Raghav Chadha.

11:02 AM: So far, 60 farmers have lost their lives during the protest. One farmer is dying every 16 hours. It is the responsibility of the government to answer, said Rakesh Tikait, Spox, Bharatiya Kisan Union at Gazipur border.  The seventh round of talks between govt and farmers to be held today.

10:30 AM: Drugs Controller General of India grants permission to Serum Institute of India to manufacture its COVID-19 vaccine ‘Covishield’.

10:15 AM: Reliance Industries Limited, through its subsidiary Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited, in a petition mentioned to be filed in Punjab & Haryana High Court today, has sought urgent intervention of Govt authorities to bring a complete stop to illegal acts of vandalism by miscreants. “These acts of violence have endangered the lives of thousands of employees & caused damage & disruption to the vital communications infrastructure. The miscreants indulging in vandalism have been instigated & aided by vested interests & our business rivals”, said Reliance Industries Ltd.

10:00 AM: Colleges in Kerala re-open today after over nine months following the outbreak of COVID19 pandemic “We are looking forward to the normal functioning of the college,” said a student.

09:45 AM: Munsyari in Pithoragarh district receives snowfall. India Meteorological Department has predicted that heavy snowfall may occur in higher reaches of the State tomorrow.

09:00 AM: India reports 16,505 new COVID-19 cases, 19,557 recoveries, and 214 deaths in last 24 hours, as per Union Health Ministry Total cases: 1,03,40,470 Active cases: 2,43,953 Total recoveries: 99,46,867 Death toll: 1,49,649.