CMYK TUESDAY www.thestatesman.com 17 NOVEMBER 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 ‘ATTACK ON PRESS FREEDOM SHOULD BE OPPOSED’ SPACEX BLASTS ASTRONAUTS INTO ORBIT P10 WEATHER Mainly clear sky. Maximum and minimum temperature most likely to be around 32 °C and 20 °C respectively.. PTI CLINCHES MOST SEATS IN GILGIT-BALTISTAN P4 ‘AZAM IS SO GOOD HE’S LIKE KOHLI’ P9 P12 Nitish sworn in as CM; ‘Third wave of Covid has peaked’: Delhi health MGB skips ceremony min rules out lockdown RAINFALL: NIL RELATIVE HUMIDITY BJP’s Tarkishore Prasad and Renu Devi take oath as new deputy CMs Max.86% SNS&AGENCIES TEMPERATURE Min. 39% Max: 32.1°C (2) Min: 19.6°C (N) SUN RISES SUN SETS 05:51 hrs 16:52 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS 06:46 hrs 17:59 hrs Moon first quarter on 22 November THUMBNAILS A girl performs ritual for her brother on the occasion of Bhai Dooj. In the Capital. SNS Kedarnath, Yamunotri close for winters: The portals of Kedarnath and Yamunotri temples in the Garhwal Himalayas were closed for winters on Bhai Dooj on Monday amidst heavy snowfall. Three out of the famous four Himalayan temples of Uttarakhand, also called Chardham, are now closed for devotees as the Gangotri temple was closed on Sunday. Uttarakhand CM Trivendra Singh Rawat, his UP counterpart Adityanath, were present as the Kedarnath temple gates P4 closed at 8.30 a.m .after a ceremony. SC judge recuses himself from AP CM’s case: Supreme Court judge U U Lalit on Monday recused himself from hearing pleas seeking action against Andhra Pradesh chief minister Y S Jaganmohan Reddy for levelling allegations against the judiciary. “I have difficulties. As a lawyer I had represented one of the parties. I will pass an order for it to be listed before a Bench without me,” Justice Lalit said. A bench comprising justices Lalit, Vineet Saran and S Ravindra Bhat was to hear three petitions seeking various reliefs against Reddy. NEW DELHI, 16 NOVEMBER itish Kumar took oath as the chief minister of Bihar for the fourth straight term today. Fourteen other ministers were sworn in along with him. His new deputies ~BJP’s Tarkishore Prasad and Renu Devi~ were among those who took oath today at the event that was attended by Home Minister Amit Shah. Since the post of a deputy chief minister is not a constitutional one, the two took oath as ministers and their posts would be notified by the cabinet in due course Mr Kumar, who heads the JD(U), was administered the oath of office at Raj Bhavan by Governor Phagu Chauhan, a day after he staked claim for the formation of a new government in the state, armed with unanimous support of all legislators of the NDA despite his party’s plummeted tally. The 69-year-old, who has had a continuous run since November 2005, except for the period in 2014-15 when Jitan Ram Manjhi held fort, is on course to becoming the longest serving chief minister of the state, eclipsing the record of Shrikrishna Singh who held the post since before Independence till his death in 1961. Mr Kumar was first sworn in as the chief minister in the year 2000, for a term that lasted barely a week as he failed to muster a majority and returned as N Bihar Governor Phagu Chauhan congratulates Janata Dal (U) national leader Nitish Kumar after taking oath as the chief minister at Raj Bhawan in Patna, on Monday. PTI a minister at the Centre in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government. The Opposition Grand Alliance today skipped the oath-taking ceremony of Nitish Kumar, claiming the mandate in the elections was “against the NDA” which has been changed by a “fraud”. RJD, which is spearheading the five-party Mahagathbandhan, and its allies~ Congress, CPI-ML, CPI and CPI(M)~stayed away from the swearing-in function of Nitish Kumar. “The RJD boycotts oathtaking ceremony of this puppet government. The mandate is for a change, and against the (ruling) NDA. The people’s verdict has been changed by the rulers order,” the RJD alleged in a tweet. “Ask the unemployed, the farmer, the contract worker and teacher as to what they are going through. People are angry with fraud committed by the NDA. We are public representatives and we stand with people,” it said. The RJD, which emerged as the single largest party in Bihar with 75 seats, also claimed the state is getting a “helpless government by the two helpless parties”. Attacking Kumar, it said Bihar will have a “chief minister who has been proven weak, idle and corrupt. And a senior partner (BJP) who has no (chief ministerial) face and is forced to resort to dubious means (for earning majority)”. Congress, which has won 19 seats under the banner of Grand Alliance, was also conspicuous by its absence. Bihar Congress president Madan Mohan Jha said they were with the RJD on the issue. AICC media panel member and MLC Prem Chandra Mishra said this government was being formed “against the wish of the people so we don’t want to be part of it.” CPI-ML, which has bagged 12 seats as a member of the Opposition alliance, has also decided to remain away from the oath-ceremony. “We have been fighting against them (the NDA) so how come we can be part of their crowning,” CPIML state secretary Kunal said. The CPI and CPI(M) will also be with their partners on the issue. In the election results for 243 Assembly seats announced on 10 November, the RJD-led Mahagathbandhan lost to the four parties NDA. The BJP is the largest party within the ruling coalition with 74 seats, followed by JD-U (43) and Vikassheel Insaan Party (VIP) and Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) four each. The BJP had announced before the polls that Kumar will remain chief minister irrespective of which NDA constituent wins the maximum number of seats. The Grand Alliance bagged 110 seats out of which RJD accounted for 75 while Congress tally was 19, CPI-ML (12) and CPI and CPI(M) two each. Others expected to be sworn in are Mukesh Sahni, the founding chief of Vikassheel Insaan Party, which has won four seats though Sahni himself lost, and Santosh Suman, whose father Jitan Ram Manjhi is a former chief minister and the president of Hindustani Awam Morcha. SNS & PTI COVID-HIT CAPITAL NEW DELHI, 16 NOVEMBER Delhi Health minister Satyendar Jain on Monday said there is no chance of reimposition of lockdown in the national capital since the third wave of coronavirus has peaked out in the city. Talking to reporters, he said the virus cannot be contained through lockdown and that people should protect themselves by wearing face masks. Delhi has witnessed a spurt in coronavirus cases since 28 October when the daily rise breached the 5,000-mark for the first time and it crossed the 8,000-mark on Wednesday. On Thursday, 104 deaths, the highest in over five months, were recorded in the city. Asked whether the lockdown would be reimposed in Delhi, Jain said, “No chance.” “I can tell you that the peak of the third wave is gone,” he said. “Positivity rate is the main indicator in assessing the Covid-19 situation and it had to be observed over a week’s time. First peak was in June, when it stood at nearly 37 per cent, in September when the second wave happened, it was 1213 per cent, and in the third wave, it was at its high, at 15 per cent few days ago and then falling. Yesterday, also it was around 15 per cent. So, I can say, the peak is gone,” Jain said. Jain’s remarks come a day after the Centre announced a slew of steps including making avail- Delhi has witnessed a spurt in coronavirus cases since 28 October when the daily rise breached the 5,000mark for the first time and it crossed the 8,000mark on Wednesday. On Thursday, 104 deaths, the highest in over five months, were recorded in the city The National Centre for Disease Control, in a report drafted recently, had warned that Delhi needed to be prepared for about 15,000 fresh Covid-19 cases per day, taking into account the winter-related respiratory problems, a large influx of patients from outside and festive gatherings Positivity rate is the main indicator in assessing the Covid-19 situation and it had to be observed over a week’s time. First peak was in June, when it stood at nearly 37 per cent, in September when the second wave happened, it was 12-13 per cent, and in the third wave, it was at its high, at 15 per cent few days ago and then falling. Yesterday, also it was around 15 per cent. So, I can say, the peak is gone. DELHI HEALTH MINISTER SATYENDAR JAIN able 300 additional ICU beds, doubling the number of daily RTPCR tests and a house-to-house survey in the national capital to check the spiralling numbers of cases in Delhi. Union Home minister Amit Shah said some of the hospitals under the municipal corporations of Delhi will be converted into dedicated Covid hospitals. The National Centre for Disease Control, in a report drafted recently, had warned that Delhi needed 30,548 new infections, lowest in 4 months Covid impact: Govt mulls joint Winter and Budget Parl sessions SNS & PTI NEW DELHI, 16 NOVEMBER SNS & PTI NEW DELHI, 16 NOVEMBER In the wake of rising Covid19 cases in the national capital, it is being contemplated that a single extended session of Parliament be held instead of separate winter and budget sessions, sources said on Monday. However, nothing has been finalised and discussions are still in a preliminary stage. A final call is yet to be taken, but there are suggestions that a single unified session can be held in the place of two sessions in such a short span of period, the sources said. The winter session of parliament usually starts from the last week of November or the first week of December, while The monsoon session, which was held from 14 September was cut short by eight days and concluded on 24 September as many MPs and Parliament staff members tested positive for Covid-19 the budget session starts from the last week of January and the Union Budget is tabled on 1 February. The monsoon session, which was held from 14 September in midst of the pandemic, was cut short by eight days and concluded on 24 September as, despite the elaborate arrangements made by authorities, many MPs and Par- liament staff members tested positive for Covid-19. Several measures such as staggered sitting of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha and the use of both chambers and galleries to accommodate members while following physical distancing were implemented during the monsoon session. The Budget session was also curtailed earlier this year amidst the looming threat of the Covid-19 pandemic. Former Lok Sabha Secretary General PDT Acharya said it is a convention to hold three sessions of parliament in a year. It is not a rule. If government clubs two sessions of parliament and holds only two sessions this year, then it will not be a violation of any rule, Acharya said. India’s Covid-19 caseload mounted to 88,45,127 with 30,548 infections being reported in a day, while the number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 82,49,579, according to data updated by the Union Health Ministry on Monday. The coronavirus death toll climbed to 1,30,070 with 435 new fatalities, the data updated at 8 a.m. showed. The number of active cases remained below 5 lakh for the sixth consecutive day. There are 4,65,478 active cases of coronavirus infection in the country as on date which comprise 5.26 per cent of the total caseload, the data stated. The total number of recoveries has surged to People wearing facemask against the coronavirus in the Capital on Monday.DEEPAK 82,49,579, pushing the national recovery rate to 93.27 per cent. The Covid-19 fatality rate stands at 1.47 per cent. The Health Ministry stressed more than 70 per cent of the deaths occurred due to comorbidities. Significant decline in active cases in Bengal: West Bengal today recorded 3,012 fresh Covid cases and 53 deaths due to the infection in a single day while there is a significant decrease in active cases to 27,897. Till now, 4,34,563 people have been detected Covid positive, 7,714 died and 3,98,952 recovered of which 4,376 patients were discharged from hospitals in a single day taking the discharge rate to 91.81 per cent. Samples of 38,127 people were tested for the virus today and the positivity rate is 8.27 per cent. Fourteen patients died due to Covid in Kolkata and North 24 Parganas each while 728 fresh cases were recorded in the city and 718 in the neighbouring district in the last 24 hours. JAMMU, 16 NOVEMBER Union minister Dr Jitendra Singh on Monday dared the Congress party to explain to the people whether it subscribed to the manifesto of the Gupkar Alliance of which it had chosen to be a partner and whether it would restore Article 370 and 35-A, if ever voted to power. Dr Jitendra Singh said, the Gupkar Alliance will spell doom for Congress Party not only in Jammu & Kashmir but throughout India. He also dared the National Conference (NC) to explain to the people of Jammu region whether it endorsed the Gupkar Resolution to restore Article 370. Accusing these political parties of playing with the sentiments of people through misleading statements, Dr Jitendra Singh expressed surprise that both the National Conference and Congress are today crying hoarse for the honour of Dogras, whereas these two political parties are precisely responsible for having perpetually compromised the Dogra pride. He accused NC and Congress of not only unleashing oppression against Dogras but also putting behind the bars the tallest Dogra of our times, namely Pandit Prem Nath Dogra. Dr Jitendra Singh said, Congress and National Conference are trying to sell the name of Maharaja Hari Singh to the new generation of Jammuites who, they think, may not be fully abreast with history. But, it is on record that Congress led by Jawaharlal Nehru and National Conference led by Sheikh Abdullah were responsible for the humiliating ouster and banishment of Maharaja Hari Singh, he said. The politically expedient Opposition leaders, said Dr Jitendra Singh, have conveniently come to the conclusion that the Dogras of Jammu do not read their own history and can, therefore, be easily manipulated by opportunistic rhetoric. He asked the Congress and the National Conference, which had ruled Jammu and Kashmir for over half a century, to come out with a white paper to explain as to how the number of employees in the J&K government services as well as the Civil Secretariat had systematically and progressively declined over the years. Dr Jitendra Singh accused these political parties of not only physical discrimination against the Jammu region but also leading a psychological warfare resulting in mental enslavement of the people of Jammu region. He said, for the first time, people in every region of Jammu & Kashmir have begun to experience the feeling of being equal citizens and not being subservient to any other region. 88,45,127 4,65,478 30,548 43,851 1,30,070 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. MONDAY 16 NOVEMBER 2020 CMYK ‘Zoom Dysmorphia’ PRESS TRUST OF INDIA NEW DELHI, 16 NOVEMBER Spending more time on virtual platforms could be affecting self-image of people and leading them to rush for facial treatments they may not have considered months before confronting a video screen, a new phenomenon called ‘Zoom Dysmorphia’, experts say. Writing in the journal Facial Plastic Surgery & Aesthetic Medicine, the authors noted that the Covid-19 pandemic has seen a massive shift towards remote work and living, with people spending record amounts of time on virtual platforms with evidence indicating that these remote trends Moderna Covid vaccine is over 94% effective WASHINGTON, 16 NOVEMBER Gupkar Alliance will spell doom for Congress: BJP Experts warn against STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE to be prepared for about 15,000 fresh Covid-19 cases per day, taking into account the winter-related respiratory problems, a large influx of patients from outside and festive gatherings. The Delhi health minister reiterated that the number of cases have proportionately increased as “we are conducting tests on a massive scale”. He said observing rituals of Chhath has been banned on ghats owing to “scientific reasons”. will persist even when conditions improve. Zoom has allowed life to go on in an ever-changing world, but may be affecting the way individuals view themselves, they said. The authors noted a surge in patients citing their appearance on Zoom as a reason to seek care, particularly concerned with acne and wrinkles. “A recent analysis of Google search trends during the pandemic showed the terms ‘acne’ and ‘hair loss’ are increasing in this newly virtual reality,” the researchers said. They attributed this trend to anxiety and depression, common psychological conditions during quarantine. US biotech firm Moderna on Monday announced its experimental vaccine against Covid19 was 94.5 percent effective, marking a second major breakthrough in the vaccine hunt. Moderna released early results from a clinical trial with more than 30,000 participants, after US pharmaceutical company Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech last week said their vaccine was 90 percent effective. Both vaccine frontrunners are based on a new platform called messenger RNA, which is faster to produce than traditional vaccines and effectively turn human cells into vaccine factories. “This positive interim analysis from our Phase 3 study has given us the first clinical validation that our vaccine can prevent Covid-19 disease, including severe disease,” said Stephane Bancel, Moderna’s CEO. The company plans to submit applications for emergency approval in the US and around the world within weeks, and says it expects to have approximately 20 million doses ready to ship in the US by the end of the year. Global infections from Covid-19 have soared past 54 million with more than 1.3 million deaths since the virus emerged in China late last year. The Moderna vaccine, which was co-developed by the US National Institutes of Health, is given in two doses 28 days apart, and the preliminary results are based on 95 volunteers of the 30,000 who fell ill with Covid-19. Of the 95, 90 had been in the trial’s placebo group, and five in the group that received the drug, called mRNA-1273.AGENCIES Details on Page 10
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