CMYK THURSRDAY www.thestatesman.com 15 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 JOHNSON UNDER PRESSURE FOR FULL LOCKDOWN BARRETT BATS AWAY DEMS’ TOUGH QUESTIONS P10 NOW, NEYMAR IS SECOND ONLY TO PELE GOVERNOR’S JIBE P10 P6 P12 RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY Torrential rains lash Common man’s Diwali Hyderabad; 19 dead is in your hands,govt SC tells Central Max.95% STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE PRESS TRUST OF INDIA HYDERABAD, 14 OCTOBER NEW DELHI, 14 OCTOBER t least 19 people were killed in Hyderabad and many more had to be evacuated as unprecedented rain, poor urban planning and encroachments on river and tank beds took a heavy toll on the Telangana capital. The usually tame Musi river was in spate and flowed over the bridges and the Hussainsagar Lake overflowed the embankments and turned the streets into streams with cars, lorries, container vehicles and even people swept away in the gushing water. Andhra Pradesh too experienced heavy rain which claimed ten lives in the state and caused extensive damage to crops, roads and uprooted electricity poles. Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi spoke to the chief ministers of both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. “Assured all possible support and assistance from the Centre in rescue and relief work. My thoughts are with those affected due to the heavy rains,” he tweeted. After the deluge hit the city around yesterday night the Telangana government declared two days of holiday till Thursday and urged the residents against venturing out unless there was an emergency. Since midnight, personnel from army, NDRF and the civic body’s own disaster response force (DRF) used boats to evacuate scores of people who were marooned in their houses. People had a tough The Supreme Court Wednesday said the Centre should implement “as soon as possible” interest waiver on loans of up to Rs 2 crore under the RBI moratorium scheme in view of the Covid-19 pandemic, saying the common man's Diwali is in the government's hands. The apex court sought to know from the Centre as to whether the benefit of loan interest waiver for borrowers of up to Rs 2 crore during the moratorium period has percolated to the common man. The court, which observed that it is concerned about how benefit of interest waiver would be given to borrowers, said the Centre has taken a welcome decision by taking note of plight of common man but authorities have not issued any order in this regard. Something concrete has to be done, a bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan said, adding that benefits of waivers to borrowers up to Rs 2 crore must be implemented as soon as possible. The court, which posted the matter for hearing on November 2, told the advocates appearing for the Centre and banks that Diwali is in your hand. The Centre recently told the apex court that going any further than the fiscal policy decisions already taken, such as waiver of compound interest charged on loans of up to Rs 2 crore for six months moratorium period, may be “detrimental” to the overall economic scenario, the nation- WEATHER Generally cloudy sky. One or two spells of thundershower. Temperature will be in the range of 35-27 degrees Celsius. TEMPERATURE Max: 35.1°C (+3) SUN RISES 05:33 hrs MOON RISES 16:23 hrs New moon on 17 Telangana govt declares two days of holiday; another 10 killed in Andhra Min. 53% Min: 27.4°C (+3) SUN SETS 17:11 hrs MOON SETS 03:41 hrs October THUMBNAILS Volunteers of Sulabh’s School Sanitation club with the help of Delhi Traffic Police take part in a ‘Handwashing’ campaign to mark Global Handwashing Day which is being observed on October 15, in the capital on Wednesday. SNS Coal block scam: The CBI Wednesday urged a Delhi court to award life imprisonment to former Union minister Dilip Ray who was convicted in a coal scam case pertaining to irregularities in the allocation of a Jharkhand coal block in 1999. Special Judge Bharat Parashar reserved the order for October 26. Besides Ray, the CBI also sought life imprisonment for other convicts in the case, including two senior officials of the Ministry of Coal at that time. Mulayam positive for Covid: Samajwadi Party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav has tested positive for the novel coronavirus, the party said on Wednesday. The 80-year-old leader is admitted to the Medanta Hospital in Gurgaon. “Samajwadi Party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav has tested positive for COVID-19 and is being monitored by doctors. As of now, there are no Covid symptoms in him,” it tweeted. “The health of netaji (Mulayam Singh Yadav) is stable,” the Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav tweeted. A Residents stand on the rooftops of flooded houses and buildings following heavy rains in Hyderabad on Wednesday. AFP time with the streets flooded, power supply hit and telecom lines disrupted, leaving them without even drinking water. There were also reports of roads caving in at various locations such as Moosapet. Areas like Begumpet and Somajiguda which are in the very heart of the city were completely flooded. Video footage showed water gushing out at Yashoda Hospital, Somajiguda, which is a key private hospital for treating Covid -19 patients. Although the deep depression has started to move away, according to the weather forecasts there is more rain in store for the city in the next two days. Telangana which has witnessed unprecedented rain during past two months saw Hyderabad receiving 176.6 mm of rain on a single day when the normal is just 4.2mm. Many areas in the city recorded over 200 mm of rain in past 24 hours. It rained heavily nonstop throughout the night and the first two of the 17 gates of Himayatsagar Lake were opened at midnight, releasing heavy inflows into river Musi. Out of 17 gates of the Himayatsagar lake 13 had to be opened due to the heavy rain. At Mohammadia Hills in Bandlaguda the wall of a private property collapsed on another structure killing 9 people including three children and injuring 2. Eight people of a family were washed away at Bandlaguda; two bodies were retrieved while six are still missing. At around 2 a.m, a breach in the embankment of a nearby tank Palle Cheruvu resulted into water entering the colonies and led to the mishap. Army personnel were deployed in this badly affected area to evacuate people. The NH 44 leading 63K Covid-19 cases, 730 deaths in a day STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI/KOLKATA, 14 OCTOBER With the addition of 63,509 fresh Covid-19 cases, India`s count of Coronavirus infections reached 72,39,390 on Wednesday, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW). With as many as 730 people succumbing to the disease in the last 24 hours, the toll due to the disease is at 1,10,586 in the country. This total Covid-19 count includes 8,26,876 active cases, and 63,01,928 cured cases. The daily rise in Covid-19 cases has generally been on the decline over the past week; just around 56 thousand cases were reported yesterday. ICMR DG Balram Bhargava, meanwhile, informed that so far there has been three cases of re-infection of Covid-19 identified in India ~ two in Mumbai and one in Ahmedabad. The current recovery rate stands at 87.05 per cent and the fatality rate is 1.53 per cent, the data from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said. Three states account for the maximum caseload in the country ~ besides Maharashtra which continues to be the worst-hit with a total of 15,43,837 cases including 40,701 deaths; it is Karnataka and Kerala. In fact, Kerala, which till two weeks back, did not feature in the top list, is now in the third spot. It was after nearly two months that the daily caseload had dropped below 60,000 on Tuesday. India had recorded a spike of 97,894 cases on September 17. According to the data from the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), India conducted 11,45,015 sample tests in a single day on Tuesday, taking the total samples tested so far to 9,00,90,122. Upward trend in Bengal Continuing the upward trend in fresh cases and deaths West Bengal today recorded 3,677 fresh Covid cases and 64 deaths taking the total case count to 3,05,697 and death toll to 5,808. There are 31,505 active cases. Kolkata registered the highest single-day Covid spikes by recording 795 fresh cases and 12 deaths while North 24 Parganas recorded 752 cases and 14 deaths. With 3,096 Covid patients being discharged from hospitals in a single day, a total of 2,68,384 patients have recovered in the state till now. to Kurnool was cut off due to collapse of a lake embankment and traffic police advised against using PV Narasimha Rao Expressway. In Hayatnagar the NDRF rescued a lorry driver as his vehicle was swept away in the rushing water. The intensity of the rain in and around Hyderabad could be gauged from the fact that irrigation officials were forced to cause a deliberate breach on the embankment of Musi River project at neighbouring Suryapet as the gates were unable to discharge the inflows. Meanwhile, critics have blamed the TRS government which claimed to have 60 per cent of its funds on infrastructure for failing to tackle encroachment and legalising illegal layouts on river and tank beds with its one time approval schemes for the disaster. Winter could be colder this year NEW DELHI, 14 OCTOBER 72,39,389 8,26,876 63,509 74,632 1,10,586 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. WEDNESDAY 14 OCTOBER 2020 Winter could be colder this season due to the prevailing La Nina conditions, India Meteorological Department (IMD) Director General Mrutunjay Mohapatra said on Wednesday. He said there should not be an impression that climate change leads to rise in the temperature, but on the contrary, it leads to erratic weather. “As weak La Nina condition is prevailing, we can expect more cold this year. The El Nino and La Nina conditions play a dominant role if you consider the large scale factor for the occurrence of cold wave conditions,” PTI Mohapatra said. Freed Mehbooba to attend J&K Opp meeting STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE JAMMU, 14 OCTOBER Just-freed former chief minister and PDP chief, Mehbooba Mufti, on Wednesday accepted National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah's invitation to participate in a meeting of all opposition parties in Srinagar to firm up a joint strategy to struggle for restoration of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir that was abrogated by the Modi government on 5 August last year. Almost all opposition leaders who a day before their arrest on 5 August 2019 signed the Gupkar Declaration pledging to collectively fight for restoration of the Article 370 will be meeting on Thursday afternoon at the residence of Farooq Abdullah to chalk out a strategy to move ahead. Farooq Abdullah, accompanied by his son and former CM Omar Abdullah, called on Mehbooba at her residence this afternoon. Alongwith a photo of the three leaders, Omar tweeted; "My father & I called on @MehboobaMufti Sahiba this afternoon to enquire about her well-being after her release from detention. She has kindly accepted Farooq Sb's invitation to join a meeting of the Gupkar Declaration signatories tomorrow afternoon". Mehbooba replied; "It was nice of you & Farooq Sahab to come home. It gave me courage listening to him. Im sure together we all can change things for the better". Farooq and Omar, who have been vocal in demanding Mehbooba’s release, met her a few hours after she was freed on Tuesday night from her 14months-long detention. Soon after her release, Mehbooba in a scathing attack on the Modi government, said no one of us can forget the "insult and humiliation" we faced on 5 August when the Article 370 was repealed "illegally and undemocratically." "Abrogation of Article 370 was a black Day", she said. Criticising the Centre for abrogating the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and splitting the state into two Union Territories, Mehbooba, in an audio message posted on Twitter, said: "We need to take back what the Delhi Dur- bar took away from us illegally and in an undemocratic manner. Not only this, but the issue of Kashmir needs to be resolved too for which several Kashmiris have laid (down) their lives. I know the path won't be easy but we need to continue with this struggle. Today, when I am being let off, I demand the release of others who are still in detention illegally." Mehbooba said she will continue her struggle for restoration of Article 370 and resolution of the long-standing Kashmir issue. "Today, I have been released after more than a year. All this while, the black day continued to assault my soul. I believe, all people in Jammu and Kashmir would be feeling the same way. None of us can forget the insult we were made to face that day". CMYK The government has taken a welcome decision taking note of the plight of common man. But you have not issued any order to anybody. You have simply given us the affidavit... We are now concerned about how waiver benefit will be given al economy and banks may not take “inevitable financial constraints”. The court is hearing a batch of petitions which have raised issues concerning the six-month loan moratorium period announced due to the Covid19 pandemic. The bench, also comprising Justices R S Reddy and M R Shah, said when authorities have decided something then it has to be implemented. The government has taken a welcome decision taking note of the plight of common man. But you have not issued any order to anybody. You have simply given us the affidavit, the bench told Solicitor General Tushar Mehta. We are now concerned about how waiver benefit will be given, the bench said, adding, We are only asking whether the loan interest waiver has percolated or not. During the hearing conducted through video-conferencing, Mehta told the bench that the Centre has taken an informed decision and has taken a huge burden. When Central government says on an affidavit that it will be implement- ed then there should not be any apprehensions, Mehta said. There is diversity in lending and different modalities are required to be followed. He said banks would waive interest on interest and then will be compensated by the government and calculation will have different modalities. We are telling you that it is a welcome decision but they want some concrete things, the bench observed, adding, we welcome the decision of the Centre, only thing it should be translated practically. The bench said the Centre may take steps to implement its decisions referred to in the affidavits filed in the court. Senior advocate Harish Salve, appearing for banks association, told the bench that banks would implement whatever decision have been taken by the government. Senior lawyer Rajeev Dutta, appearing for one of the petitioners, said the banks are capitalising by taking interest on interest on existing loans. “We are small people with small loans (less than Rs 2 crore). They should not compound the interest in these cases.”
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