CMYK FRIDAY www.thestatesman.com 09 OCTOBER 2020 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 12 |` 5.00|LC* KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR POPE COMMITS TO CLEAN FINANCES AMIDST SCANDAL TRUMP REFUSES TO PARTICIPATE IN VIRTUAL DEBATE P10 WEATHER Generally cloudy sky. One or two spells of thundershower. Temperature will be in the range of 34-26 degrees Celsius. RAINFALL: 0.7 mm RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max. 95% TEMPERATURE P10 THUMBNAILS A vendor demonstrates the sterilisation process with an ultraviolet light device on auditorium seats in Bangalore on Thursday as cinemas prepare to reopen on October 15. AFP Domestic flights: Airlines may be permitted to operate maximum 75 per cent of their preCovid scheduled domestic flights if the passenger numbers continue to remain healthy during the next 7-10 days, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Thursday. “Our internal thinking is that we will watch it for another week or 10 days....If the figures (of passengers travelling) continue to be healthy, we would open domestic civil aviation to 75 per cent of the pre-COVID levels,” Puri said. NCR pollution action plan: A Supreme Courtmandated body on Thursday said stricter measures to fight air pollution will come into force in Delhi and its neighbouring cities from October 15 as part of the Graded Response Action Plan, as air quality in the region hit poor levels. It, however, told the governments of Delhi, Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan to “try and avert” the need to take emergency measures, such as a ban on construction and industries using fuels other than piped natural gas, as the economy is already under stress. NEW DELHI, 8 OCTOBER Freedom of speech and expression is the most abused right in recent times, the Supreme Court said on Thursday as it pulled up the Centre for filing an affidavit short on details in a plea seeking strong action against media houses for demonizing the Muslim community in connection with the Tablighi Jamaat event earlier this year. The bench, comprising Chief Justice S A Bobde, Justice A S Bopanna and Justice V Ramasubramanian, told the Solicitor General Tushar Mehta: “You cannot treat the court the way you are treating it in this case.” The bench noted that the Centre’s affidavit has been filed by a junior officer, and it is also extremely evasive and does not provide details on the aspect of bad reporting about the Tablighi Jamaat event. “How can you say there was no incident (of bad reporting)?” the bench asked. Senior advocate Dushyant Dave, appearing for the petitioners, contended before the bench that Centre's response seems like an attempt to muzzle the freedom of speech. The Chief Justice said the Centre is entitled to make an argument, but “this freedom of speech may be the most abused freedom in recent times”. The bench asked for information on Acts, which PRESS TRUST OF INDIA MUMBAI, 8 OCTOBER Mumbai police on Thursday said they have busted a Television Rating Points (TRP) manipulation racket, arresting four persons in the case. TRP is a tool to judge which TV programmes are viewed the most and also indicates the viewers' choice and the popularity of a particular channel. Mumbai police commissioner Param Bir Singh told reporters that Republic TV channel, facing flak over its attack on Mumbai police and the Maharas- The Indian nationals, hailing from Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh, were kidnapped at a place called Asshwerif in Libya in September while travelling to Tripoli airport to catch a flight to India ters relating to the welfare of Indian nationals in Libya, has reached out to the Libyan authorities, as also international organisations present there, to seek their help in rescuing the Indian nationals. The employer of the abducted Indians has been contacted by the kidnappers and shown photographs as proof that they were safe and Centre allows political gatherings in Bihar STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 8 OCTOBER The Union Home Ministry today permitted political meetings of over 100 persons with immediate effect in pollbound Bihar, and other States where Assembly and Parliamentary by-elections are taking place. On 30 September, the Home Ministry had issued guidelines permitting state governments to allow political meetings beyond the limit of 100 persons from 15 October. Advancing the date for the meetings in view of the Bihar elections and other by-elections, Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla today issued orders P12 have exercised similar powers in the past, and had a brief discussion on the implication of the Cable Television Networks Act. The bench also said that it wants to know if the government have any powers to ban or question the TV broadcast and insisted the Centre should file an affidavit detailing steps it had taken to stop broadcasts in TV channels which targeted a single community. The observations came during the hearing of a plea from Jamait Ulama-i-Hind seeking action against media reports indulging in communalising the Tablighi Jamaat meeting in Delhi in March. The congregation at Markaz Nizamuddin was accused of accelerating the spread of the coronavirus, with its attendees allegedly carrying the infection to different parts of the country. Is it media’s job to advise on probe, asks HC MUMBAI, 8 OCTOBER Bombay High Court asked on Thursday if it was the media's job to proffer advise to an investigating agency about how it should conduct a probe. The remark was made by a bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice G S Kulkarni during the hearing of public interest litigations (PILs) against the “media trial” in the actor Sushant Singh Rajput death case. The judges made the comment when advocate Malvika Trivedi, representing a news channel which has been made a respondent, opposed PTI the PILs. PRESS TRUST OF INDIA NEW DELHI, 8 OCTOBER Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan, one of the most prominent Dalit leaders of the country, died on Thursday at the age of 74. Announcing the minister's demise, his son Chirag Paswan tweeted, “Papa, you are no more in this world but I know you are with me wherever you are.” The Lok Janshakti Party founder and Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution was admitted to a private hospital here for several weeks and had recently undergone a heart operation. A stalwart of the socialist movement who later emerged as Bihar's foremost Dalit leader with following across the country, Ram Vilas Paswan was instrumental in the implementation of the Mandal Commission report in the 1990s. Condoling his demise, TRP manipulation racket busted: Mumbai police htra government in the Sushant Singh Rajput death case, was also involved in the “false TRP” racket. The Mumbai police crime branch, which unearthed the racket, has arrested two persons, owners of two Marathi channels, for manipulating viewership ratings, Singh said. Another police official said two former employees of Hansa agency, involved in the process to determine the TRPs, have also been arrested. Singh said Republic TV channel is also involved in the TRP racket and those responsible will be 7 Indians kidnapped in Libya, efforts on for their release Seven Indians working in Libya have been kidnapped and the government is in touch with relevant authorities to secure their safe release, the External Affairs Ministry said today. “Seven Indian nationals, hailing from the states of Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh, were kidnapped at a place called Asshwerif in Libya on 14 September. They were working at a construction and oil field supplies company and were kidnapped on their way to the Tripoli airport to catch a flight to India,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said. He said the Indian Embassy in Tunisia, which handles mat- KNIGHTS DON'T LET YADAV RIDE WITH THEM Union minister Ram Freedom of speech most abused right: SC Vilas Paswan dead STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE Max: 34.2°C (+2) Min: 25.2°C (+1) SUN RISES SUN SETS 05:31 hrs 17:18 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS 10:45 hrs 21:45 hrs Next moon quarter on 10 October NEW DELHI, 8 OCTOBER P5 Centre pulled up for evasive affidavit on media coverage of Tablighi meet Min. 60% STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE ‘IAF DEMONSTRATED CAPACITY ALONG NORTHERN BORDER’ saying the relaxation would apply only outside the containment zones and in the constituencies going to the polls. If meetings are held in closed spaces, a maximum of 50 per cent of the hall capacity will be allowed, with a ceiling of 200 persons. Wearing of face masks, maintaining social distancing, provision for thermal scanning and use of hand wash or sanitizer will be mandatory. If the meetings are held in open spaces, keeping the size of the ground/space in view, and with strict observance of social distancing, mandatory wearing of face masks, provision for thermal scanning and hand wash or sanitizer will have to be made. keeping well. “The government is in touch with their family members and would like to assure them that we are making all possible efforts, in consultation and coordination with the Libyan authorities and the employer, to trace our nationals and secure their release from captivity at the earliest,'' the spokesperson said. He pointed out that in September 2015, an advisory had been issued by the Government of India for Indian nationals to avoid travelling to Libya in view of the security situation there. Later, in May 2016, the government imposed a complete travel ban irrespective of the purpose in view of the much deteriorated security situation. This travel ban was still in force. arrested. Republic TV, in a statement, rubbished Singh's claims. Arnab Goswami, editor-in-chief of the channel, said the Mumbai police chief made false claims against Republic TV as the channel had questioned him in the Sushant Singh Rajput case investigation. He said the channel will file a criminal defamation case against the police commissioner. Singh said bank accounts of these channels are also being probed and people responsible for the TRP racket are being summoned by police for further investigation. Manipulated TRP ratings result in miscalculated targeted audience for the advertisers, he said, adding this results in losses of hundreds of crores of rupees. TRP is calculated on the basis of TV channel viewership in a confidential set of households. Singh said those involved in the racket would bribe people in these households and ask them to keep some channels switched on even when they weren't watching or not at home. The Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) releases weekly rating points for TV channels in India and its officials are also being questioned in connection with the case, he said. There are 2,000 barometers installed in Mumbai to monitor TRPs, he said, adding BARC gave the contract to Hansa for monitoring these barometers. Hansa had filed a complaint regarding the TRP racket. “During the investigation it came to light that some former employees of the agency were involved in compromising the data and they were sharing it with some television companies,” he said. STREET BATTLE Hundreds of BJP workers clashed with police on the streets of Kolkata and Howrah on Thursday as they attempted to march to the state secretariat over alleged worsening law and order. Several parts of the two cities resembled battle zones, with police bursting teargas shells and (REPORT ON PAGE 3) using water cannons and batons to break up protests. BHASKAR MALLICK President Ram Nath Kovind said: “The nation has lost a visionary leader. He was among the most active and longest-serving members of parliament. He was the voice of the oppressed, and championed the cause of the marginalized.” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was saddened beyond words. “Shri Ram Vilas Paswan Ji's demise is a personal loss. I have lost a friend, valued colleague and someone who was extremely passionate to ensure every poor person leads a life of dignity,” he said in a condolence message. Born in Khagaria in 1946, Paswan became an MLA for the first time in 1969 on a Samyukta Socialist Party ticket. He was elected to Lok Sabha eight times and also held the record of winning his constituency, Hajipur, with the highest margin for several years. Always at the forefront of raising issues concerning the disadvantaged sections of society, he was a skilful grassroots politician who enjoyed good equations with leaders across the spectrum, and his dedicated following in his state ensured that every national party courted him in his over-five decades career. He was a minister in central governments headed by parties of contrasting ideological persuasions, ranging from the Janata Dal to the Congress and the BJP since 1989. His , demise comes days before Bihar goes to Assembly polls in three phases beginning October 28. 78K new cases take India's Covid-19 tally past 68 lakh STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI/KOLKATA, 8 OCTOBER With a fresh spike of 78,524 coronavirus cases and 971 deaths in 24 hours, India's tally on Thursday went past the 68lakh-mark with a total of 68,35,655 cases. Out of these, 9,02,425 are currently active; 58,27,704 have been discharged, while 1,05,526 have lost the battle against the pandemic. The recovery rate stands at 85.02 per cent and the fatality rate at 1.55 per cent, data from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said. On Tuesday, India recorded a spike of 61,267, which was the lowest since August. But on Wednesday it again recorded 72,049 cases. According to the the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), India conducted 11,94,321 sample tests on Wednesday, taking the total number of samples tested so far to 8,34,65,975. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, meanwhile, called upon people to join hands to combat the coronavirus through strict adherence to norms of social distancing, wearing masks and cleaning hands regularly, as the Union government launched a public awareness drive as part of the fight against Covid-19. The start of a 'jan andolan' (mass movement) campaign comes in view of upcoming festivals, winter season and opening up of the economy, as a lack of adherence to recommended precautions can increase cases of the infection. 68,35,655 9,02,425 78,524 83,011 1,05,526 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. THURSDAY 8 OCTOBER 2020 Bengal surge Continuing the surge in single-day Covid cases, West Bengal today registered 3,526 fresh cases and 63 deaths due to the infection. Kolkata recorded 765 fresh cases and 11 deaths and North 24-Parganas recorded 717 cases and 16 deaths. Currently, the total Covid case count is 2,84,030 and death toll is 5,439 in the state till now while there are 28,854 active cases. In the last 24 hours, 2,970 patients were discharged from hospitals, taking the number of recovered patients to 2,49,737. Meanwhile, Dr Ajay Chakraborty, the state director of health services (DHS), and his wife tested positive for Covid-19 today. American poet Louise Glück wins Nobel literature prize ASSOCIATED PRESS STOCKHOLM, 8 OCTOBER American poet Louise Glück won the Nobel Prize in Literature on Thursday for her “candid and uncompromising” work, which looks unflinchingly and with biting humour at the losses and traumas of family life. She joins a handful of American poets who have received the prize, which has been dominated by novelists throughout its 112-year history. The last American to win was Bob Dylan in 2016. She is also one of the few women ~ the 16th female Nobel Literature laureate. The Nobel Committee praised Glück “for her unmis- takable poetic voice that with austere beauty makes individual existence universal” in the citation read during the announcement in Stockholm by Mats Malm, permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy. New York-born Glück, 77, who is a faculty member at Yale University, made her debut in 1968 with Firstborn, and “was soon acclaimed as one of the most prominent poets in American contemporary literature,” the committee said. Anders Olsson, chairman of the Nobel literature committee, said Glück’s 12 collections of poetry were “characterized by striving for clarity.” They include Descending Figure, The Triumph of Achilles and Ararat. Olsson said her verses, which often draw on classical influences and examine family life, were marked by an “austere but also playful intelligence and a refined sense of composition.” Raised in a family with Hungarian Jewish origins, CMYK Glück has spoken of how a teenage struggle with anorexia, and the therapy she received for it, influenced her incisive writing. Glück is the recipient of many awards, including Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Gold Medal in Poetry and the National Humanities Medal. She won the Pulitzer Prize in 1993 for The Wild Iris and the National Book Award for Faithful and Virtuous Night in 2014. She was U.S. poet laureate from 2003 to 2004. The Nobel Prize, which includes a 10 million kronor (more than $1.1 million) prize, comes after several years of controversy and scandal for the organization that awards the literary accolade. In 2018, the award was postponed after sex abuse allegations rocked the Swedish Academy, which designates the committee that chooses the literature winners, and sparked a mass exodus of members. After the academy revamped itself in a bid to regain the trust of the Nobel Foundation, two laureates were named last year, with the 2018 prize going to Poland’s Olga Tokarczuk and the 2019 award to Austria’s Peter Handke. But Handke’s prize caused a storm of protest: A strong supporter of the Serbs during the 1990s Balkan wars, he has been called an apologist for Serbian war crimes. Several countries including Albania, Bosnia and Turkey boycotted the Nobel awards ceremony in protest, and a member of the committee that nominates candidates for the literature prize resigned. On Monday, the Nobel Committee awarded the prize for physiology and medicine for discovering the liver-ravaging hepatitis C virus. Tuesday’s prize for physics honored breakthroughs in understanding the mysteries of black holes, and the chemistry prize on Wednesday went to scientists behind a powerful gene-editing tool. Still to come are prizes for outstanding work in the fields of peace and economics.
The Statesman is one of India's oldest English newspapers. It was founded in Kolkata in 1875 and is directly descended from The Friend of India (founded 1818). The Englishman (founded 1821) was merged with The Statesman in 1934. The Delhi edition of The Statesman began publication in 1931. The Statesman Weekly is a compendium of news and views from the Kolkata and Delhi editions. Printed on airmail paper, it is popular with readers outside India. The Statesman (average weekday circulation approximately 180,000) is a leading English newspaper in West Bengal. The Sunday Statesman has a circulation of 230,000.