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The outbreak of Covid19. Pixabay

Forewarned is forearmed. This was exactly what China suppressed when it came to the breakout of the Covid-19 pandemic in Wuhan and other parts of its country. Bringing this crucial aspect of deliberate camouflage by her native country is the well-known Chinese director Nanfu Wang’s latest documentary “In The Same Breath”. The film goes on to add to the infinitely growing list of atrocities committed by China in the past including the Tiananmen Square massacre and the continuing crimes against Tibetans and the Uyghur Muslims.

The documentary pointedly portrays how one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, China, flouting its moral and legal responsibility, deliberately and systematically, hid the outbreak of Covid-19. Instead of forewarning its citizens and the world at large, the nation, and its leaders downplayed the break out of the virus, through the State-controlled media, including television. Hardly behooving, a country which has the world’s largest population and is one of the fastest developing economies having commercial and trading relations with multiple countries.

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Contrary to taking corrective steps, the authorities are depicted in the movie banning social-media posts about Corona, barring symptomatic persons from getting admitted into hospitals, and penalizing doctors who had the honesty and courage to speak up about the virus and the risks it entails. Precisely this clampdown, the film stresses resulted in a large number of deaths, and most importantly, keeping Chinese citizens and the world at large uninformed about the disease and its fallouts.

Documentary related to the virus. IANS

In a despatch, The Washington Post has stated that the film talks about “eight doctors being punished for spreading rumors about unknown pneumonia’ after discussing the virus in private group texts — a warning repeated by state news anchors for days. A public-address announcement blares: “A reminder from the police: obey laws and regulations for online activities’ in the streets. A man is taken to the police station and fingerprinted for a cellphone video of a long line outside a funeral home”.

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Wang is equally critical of the US in the film where more than four lakh deaths and nearly 26 million confirmed cases have been reported. In an interview to the website Deadline, she said: “The more I saw what happened in the US, I had more questions. I would say it was my political awakening moment of seeing the US in a new way that I never did.”

Adopting guerrilla filmmaking, Wang’s film has been shot with several cameras and freelancers, who have filmed in hospitals, emergency wards, and ambulances. The documentary will be screened at the ongoing Sundance Film Festival and is expected on HBO later this year. Financed by HBO, the film was specially screened for The Washington Post. (IANS)



Japan's former Princess Mako, the elder daughter of Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko, and her husband Kei Komuro, look at each other during a press conference to announce their marriage at a hotel in Tokyo, Japan, Oct. 26, 2021

The niece of Japanese Emperor Naruhito, Princess Mako, married a commoner Tuesday, relinquishing her royal status following a heavily scrutinized, controversial four-year engagement.

The Japanese Imperial Household Agency issued a statement announcing the marriage of Mako to Kei Komuro, both 30 years old.

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This photo provided by the U.S. Attorney's Office for Utah shows fentanyl-laced fake oxycodone pills collected during an investigation

WASHINGTON — U.S. federal law enforcement agencies and Europol announced dozens of arrests to break up a global operation that sold illegal drugs using a shadowy realm of the internet.

At a Department of Justice news conference Tuesday in Washington, officials said they arrested 150 people for allegedly selling illicit drugs, including fake prescription opioids and cocaine, over the so-called darknet. Those charged are alleged to have carried out tens of thousands of illegal sales using a part of the internet that is accessible only by using specialized anonymity tools.

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Photo by Benjamin Dada on Unsplash

Currently, when users set up WhatsApp Pay in India, the service only verifies the phone number linked to your bank account to enable UPI-based transactions

Facebook-owned WhatsApp may soon ask users to verify their identity to make payments on the platform. According to XDA Developers, new strings spotted in the latest WhatsApp beta release suggest that the messenger will require users to upload verification documents to continue using payments on WhatsApp. Currently, when users set up WhatsApp Pay in India, the service only verifies the phone number linked to your bank account to enable UPI-based transactions. In Brazil, the messenger uses Facebook Pay to validate users' credit or debit cards to facilitate payments.

At the moment, the service doesn't require users to submit any identity verification documents to make payments. However, that might change soon, the report said. WhatsApp v2.21.22.6 beta includes a few new strings which suggest that users might have to submit identity verification documents to continue using payments.

The identity verification might be limited to those who use WhatsApp Pay to receive payments for their businesses. UPI-based apps, like Google Pay, PhonePe and even WhatsApp Pay don't require users to submit any documents to transfer or receive money. However, wallet apps like PayTM do ask for KYC verification as per RBI guidelines.

WhatsApp is yet to make an official announcement regarding this change. Since the new strings have just made their way to the beta version, it might be a while before the company reveals any details, the report said. (IANS/ MBI)

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