News18 Afternoon Digest: Showcasing Lord Ram’s Int’l Appeal, 48-Page Stamp Book Out; Indian Navy to The Rescue Again & Other Top Stories

In today’s afternoon digest, News18 brings you the latest updates on the ‘Pran Pratishtha’ ceremony of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya. We are also covering the latest updates on the attack on a cargo ship in the Gulf of Aden, among other top stories.

Ayodhya Ram Mandir LIVE: Showcasing Lord Ram’s Int’l Appeal, 48-Page Stamp Book Out; Devotees to Ayodhya Double, Donation in Crores

The idol of Ram Lalla was brought inside the sanctum sanctorum of the temple in Ayodhya in the early hours of Thursday. Meanwhile, sources said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi — who will preside over the consecration ceremony — will arrive in the state on January 21. FOLLOW LIVE UPDATES

Indian Navy to The Rescue Again: Warship Helps Cargo Vessel Under Drone Attack In Gulf Of Aden

Indian Navy’s prompt response again saved a cargo vessel that came under a drone strike in the Gulf of Aden on Wednesday night. A Marshall Island-flagged vessel with 22 crew members, including nine Indians, was attacked 60 nautical miles South of Port Aden. READ MORE

What Next In Tehran-Islamabad Flare-Up And What It Means For Pakistan Army Domestically

Tensions between Iran and Pakistan call for a third-party negotiation to defuse the situation that could spiral into a dangerous escalation, according to experts. Nonetheless, Pakistan’s swift response to the Iranian strike could galvanise domestic support for the country’s powerful military, which has faced protests by former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s party members after his ouster. READ MORE

Aadhaar Cannot Be Used For THIS Purpose, EPFO Removes It From Document List

The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has excluded Aadhaar from the list of documents for verifying the date of birth (DoB). EPFO is part of the Ministry of Labour and Employment of India. This move aligns with a directive from the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the governing body responsible for Aadhaar. Now you will have to provide some other document in its place. READ MORE

Pakistan Strikes in Iran Kill 9, PM Kakar Cuts Short Davos Visit, Tehran Summons Pak Envoy: Top Updates

Pakistan conducted strikes deep inside Iran on Thursday, targeting hideouts of militants, the Pakistani foreign ministry said, two days after Tehran said it attacked Israel-linked militant bases inside Pakistani territory. READ MORE

Rohit Shetty Teases He’s Ready To Bring SRK Into Cop Universe With Salman, Aamir: ‘Ek Ko Bhi Kyu…’

Director Rohit Shetty is currently gearing up for the release of his web series Indian Police Force. The show will star Sidharth Malhotra, Shilpa Shetty and Vivek Oberoi in key roles. Meanwhile, he is also shooting for Ajay Devgn-led Singham Again. Both projects are part of his ‘cop-verse’ and introduce new actors as the police. As such, the director was recently asked if he wanted to bring Shah Rukh, Salman and Aamir into the ‘cop-verse’ as well. READ MORE

Navy Chief R Hari Kumar Does Push-Ups With Cadets At NDA; Garners Appreciation | WATCH

A video of Chief of Naval Staff Admiral R Hari Kumar doing push-ups with the cadets at the National Defence Academy has taken the internet by a storm. The admiral was visiting his alma mater — the Juliet Squadron of NDA — and joined in on the celebrations of winning the Champion Chiefs of Staff Banner. READ MORE

Passenger’s Impromptu Gig at Kochi Airport Amid Airline Delays is a Lesson for Impatient Flyers

Amid the exasperating routines of air travellers grappling with delayed flights and airport inconveniences, a heartwarming incident unfolded at Kochi airport—a potential ‘lesson’ for all those impatient flyers. Renowned Indian percussionist Sivamani, undeterred by the mundane and frustrating baggage delay, transformed the situation into an impromptu drumming session. The episode gained attention when a video surfaced on social media, capturing the 64-year-old musician using his drum sticks on the conveyor belt railings to recreate the beats of AR Rahman’s ‘Humma Humma’ from the 1995 film, ‘Bombay.’ READ MORE

Karan Johar Channels Rajinikanth In New Video, Leaves Kiara Advani In SHOCK; Tamannaah Reacts

Karan Johar and Kiara Advani reunited for yet another commercial video and this time around, Karan channelled his inner massy South Indian superstar. The duo, who is prompting an eyewear brand, was seen standing in an eyewear showroom when Kiara offers Karan to try a pair of flashy sunglasses that are often wore by stars such as Mahesh Babu, Prabhas, Allu Arjun, Ram Charan, Jr NTR, and Dhanush among others, in South Indian films. “South Indian superstar look? Pan India!” Karan declares as he puts on the sunglasses. READ MORE

Google CEO Sundar Pichai Confirms More Layoffs Expected This Year: Here’s What He Said

Google has laid off thousands of employees in the past few months and the bad news is that 2024 is likely to see more job cuts at the search giant. The company’s chief has indicated major changes in an internal memo, quoted by The Verge in this report. “We have ambitious goals and will be investing in our big priorities this year. The reality is that to create the capacity for this investment, we have to make tough choices,” the quoted memo from Pichai said. READ MORE

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