SUNDAY www.thestatesman.com 14 FEBRUARY 2021 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 12 | `5|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR TRUMP ACQUITTAL EXPECTED IN SENATE VOTE INTIMATE SELECTIONS Partly cloudy sky. Dense to very dense fog in the morning. The maximum and minimum temperatures would be around 27 and 12 degrees Celsius respectively. RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max: 100% Max: 26.6°C (+4) SUN RISES 07:00 hrs MOON RISES 9:15 hrs Min: 49% SNS & PTI NEW DELHI, 13 FEBRUARY Min:10.8°C (0) SUN SETS 18:11 hrs MOON SETS 20:37 hrs U THUMBNAILS A health worker being vaccinated against Covid-19 as the second phase of vaccination, Corona Vaccination 2.0, was launched across the country. At Max Hospital, Patparganj, in (P 2) the Capital on Saturday. SNS Mahua urges security withdrawal from home: Trinamul Congress MP Mahua Moitra on Saturday took strong exception to the stationing of three armed security personnel at her home in the national capital, wondering whether she was under “some sort of surveillance” and asked the Delhi Police chief to withdraw them. “The conduct of these armed officers indicate that they are making notes of movements to and from my residence,” she stated in a letter. Five elephants die within 13 days in Odisha: Five elephants have died within a gap of 13 days inside Karlapat Wildlife Sanctuary in Kalahandi district of Odisha, officials said. All the carcasses were found near water bodies, they said. The Principal Chief Conservator of Forest Sashi Pal said, the elephant deaths were due to some bacterial infection. “The water bodies in the sanctuary may have been infected,” he said. Divisional Forest Officer, Kalahandi (South), Ashok Kumar said water samples have been collected from different spots for testing. Farmers seek judicial enquiry into R-Day clash ‘Statehood for J-K K at appropriate time’ nion Home Minister Amit Shah asserted in Lok Sabha on Saturday that the government has done more for Jammu and Kashmir since Article 370 was scrapped in August 2019 than those who ruled it for generations, even as he assured that the Centre will grant full statehood to the union territory at an appropriate time. Replying to a discussion on the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, he also slammed some Opposition members for their claim that the proposed law negates the hopes of the region getting back its erstwhile statehood. The Bill to merge the Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) cadre of all-India services officers with the Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Mizoram Union Territory (AGMUT) cadre was later passed by Lok Sabha by a voice vote. The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2021 has already been passed by Rajya Sabha. It replaces an ordinance issued last month. This legislation has nothing to do with statehood, and Jammu and Kashmir will be accorded the status at an appropriate time, Shah said. He took a swipe at the Congress and other parties ~ which had backed Article 370 of the Constitution that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir ~ saying this was a temporary provision but they continued with it for over 70 years before the Modi government annulled SNS & PTI NEW DELHI, 13 FEBRUARY The distribution of daily deaths among states and Union territories in a span of 24 hours reflects a significant decline, with 17 of them not reporting any new Covid-19 fatality, the Union Health Ministry said on Saturday. The states and Union territories that have not reported any new deaths in the last 24 hours areTelangana,Odisha,Jharkhand, Puducherry, Chandigarh, Nagaland, Assam, Manipur, Sikkim, Meghalaya, Ladakh, Mizoram, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Tripura, Lakshadweep, Arunachal Pradesh and Daman and Diu and Dadra and Nagar Haveli. Altogether 13 states and UTs Indian-origin employee aims for top job at UN PRESS TRUST OF INDIA UNITED NATIONS, 13 FEBRUARY An Indian-origin employee at the UN has announced her candidacy to be its next Secretary-General, the first person to throw her hat in the ring against incumbent Antonio Guterres, who is seeking a second five-year term beginning January 2022 as chief of the world organisation. Arora Akanksha, 34, working as an audit coordinator for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), said she will run for the post of the world’s top diplomat and launched her campaign #AroraForSG this month. People in my position aren’t supposed to stand up to the ones in charge. We are supposed to wait our turn, hop on the hamster wheel, go to work, keep our heads down and accept that the AMIT SHAH HOME MINISTER it. Jammu and Kashmir has been a top priority for the current government since it took power in 2014, he said.Responding to Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Shah said Opposition parties were free to visit the region. Chowdhury had claimed that foreign delegations were being taken to the region, no all-party delegation was sent. The home minister also gave the assurance to the people of Jammu and Kashmir that“no one will lose their land”. The government has sufficient land for development works, Shah said. Decentralisation and devolution of power have taken place in the union territory following the revocation of Article 370, Shah said, noting that panchayat elections saw over 51 per cent voting. Panchayats have been given administrative and financial powers for local development, something they lacked earlier, he added. Now people chosen by the masses will rule Jammu and Kashmir, not those born to “kings and queens”, world is the way it is, Akanksha said in a two and half minute campaign video posted online. The video shows Akanksha walking inside the sprawling UN headquarters, as her voiceover says that people who have come before her have failed to hold the UN accountable. For 75 years, the UN has not fulfilled its promise to the world ~ refugees haven’t been protected, humanitarian aid has been minimal, and technology and innovation has been on the back-burner. We deserve a UN that leads progress,” she said. have reported between 1-5 new deaths due to Covid. India’s total Covid active caseload currently stands at 1.36 lakh comprising just 1.25 per cent of the total infections. A total of 12,143 daily new cases were registered in a span of 24 hours, it said, adding that 86.01 per cent of the new cases are from six states. Kerala continues to report the highest daily new cases at 5,397, followed by Maharashtra with 3,670, while Tamil Nadu reported 483 new cases. Further, 103 deaths were recorded in a span of 24 hours. Six states account for 80.58 per cent of the new deaths. Maharashtra saw the maximum of 36 casualties. Kerala follows with 18 daily deaths, while Karnata- he said, attacking dynastic parties in the region. Even our rivals could not allege any wrongdoing in these polls which were conducted fairly and peacefully, he said. Work on two AIIMS in the region has begun, and the Kashmir Valley will be connected to the railways by 2022, the Union Home Minsiter said. Attacking the Opposition, he said while they were seeking a report card from the government about the development of Jammu and Kashmir since the abrogation of Article 370 in August 2019, “have you brought a report card of what you have done in the last 70 years”. Shah said the government expects that around 25,000 government jobs will be created in Jammu and Kashmir by 2022. Replying to AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi, he said 4G services are resumed not under pressure of any foreign government. “This is Modi’s government and in this, the country’s government and Parliament takes decision for its people,” he added. Citing certain develop- ka and Punjab reported 8 deaths each. A total of 1,06,00,625 people have recovered so far with 11,395 patients getting discharged in the previous 24 hours. Kerala has reported the maximum number of single-day recoveries, with 5,332 newly-recovered cases. Delhi logs 126 cases & no death: Delhi today recorded 126 fresh coronavirus cases and no Covidlinked death, while the positivity rate stood at 0.21 per cent, according to the latest health bulletin issued by the Delhi government's health department. This was the second time this month when the single-day Covid fatality count was stated (SEE P 2) to be zero. NEW DELHI, 13 FEBRUARY Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday hit out at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi saying he is becoming a “doomsday man” for India by constantly insulting constitutional functionaries and creating fake narratives on various issues. Replying to the general discussion on Budget in Lok Sabha, she said the former Congress chief was creating fake narratives but does not have patience to listen to replies on allegations levelled against the government. “We need to recognise these two tendencies of the Congress party. One is creating fake narratives and second, lack of belief in a democratically elected Parliamentary system. “In banks, you did phone banking and left huge NPAs. This is one tendency, create institutions and use them for ‘Hum Do Hamare Do’ and at the end of the day NEW DELHI, 13 FEBRUARY Lok Sabha was adjourned on Saturday, ending the first phase of the Budget session which reported close to 100 per cent productivity and witnessed 13 privilege notices filed by MPs. The House will reconvene on March 8 after recess. The first phase of the Budget session started on January 29 with President’s address to joint sitting of both houses of Parliament which was boycotted by over 20 Opposition parties in support of the demand of the protesting farmers for the repeal of the three PTI farm laws. mental projects, he said by 2022 we will be providing rail connectivity to Kashmir valley. Since the imposition of President’s rule in Jammu and Kashmir, the government has almost completed the work of giving electricity to every house. Shah said the government has changed the land laws to facilitate setting up of industry.“We are providing Rs 13,000 per month cash assistance to those 44,000 displaced Kashmiri families who have Rahat Cards,” he said adding they were displaced beca-use Congress had failed to provide them security. No new Covid deaths in 17 states, UTs NEW DELHI, 13 FEBRUARY Protesting farmer unions on Saturday demanded a high-level judicial inquiry into the violence that took place during the tractor rally in Delhi on 26 January and the alleged “false” cases slapped on the farmers. Addressing a press conference at the Singhu border, Samyukta Kisan Morcha leaders asked farmers who are getting police notices not to appear before the force directly and, instead, approach the legal cell constituted by the unions for any assistance. According to SKM leaders, 16 farmers who had participated in the tractor parade are PTI still untraceable. PRESS TRUST OF INDIA First phase of Budget session concludes This legislation, The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2021, has nothing to do with statehood, and Jammu and Kashmir will be accorded the status at an appropriate time 1,08,92,746 1,36,571 12,143 11,395 1,55,550 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. SATURDAY 13 FBERUARY 2021 P12 FM: Rahul becoming doomsday man for India Home minister says development in the Union territory top priority TEMPERATURE MEDVEDEV ADVANCES P11 P10 P6 WEATHER MYANMAR PROTESTS ENTER SECOND WEEK Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said the former Congress chief was creating fake narratives but does not have patience to listen to replies on allegations levelled against the GoI keep accusing others,” she said. ‘Hum Do Hamare Do’expression was used by Gandhi in his speech on Thursday, during the general debate on the Budget, referring to the fact that only four persons are ruling this country including two business houses. Retorting to this, the Finance Minister said this expression fits on the Gandhi family. With regard to the second tendency of Congress, she said, “We will put allegations, use abusive language, but when under Parliamentary procedure they have to respond to... they only shout and walk out.” She criticised the Con- No immediate threat from temporary lake; rescue efforts continue STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE gress for inconsistency in their approach in the two houses of Parliament. “The same party in Rajya Sabha takes part in Budget discussion and asks questions and listens answers... why that does not happen in Lok Sabha... why take different positions in Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha... what is this,” she wondered. Responding to Rahul Gandhi’s speech on Thursday, during which he talked about farm laws but declined to speak on the Budget, she said, “he is probably becoming a doomsday man for India.” The minister further said that Gandhi laid the “foundation” but did not speak about the Budget during the discussion on it. Sitharaman said she wanted Gandhi to speak on 10 issues, but was disappointed as the Congress leader made no mention of them.“I wanted to know from the Congress why it took a U-turn on the farm laws but no reply came,” she said. See page 8 SC: Right to protest cannot be anytime & everywhere NEW DELHI, 13 FEBRUARY DEHRADUN, 13 FEBRUARY The lake which has formed in the upstream of Rishiganaga in the flash-flood hit area in district Chamoli, is maintaining smooth discharge and there is no immediate threat from the water body. A team of the State Disaster Relief Force and National Disaster Relief Force reached the lake site on Saturday and provided a ground report to the state government. Navneet Bhullar, Commandant of the SDRF , said, “The discharge of the water is smooth. Debris has created a field of about 500-700 metres on the front part of the lake. The ground, formed by ice, debris and boulder, is smooth. The water flowing downstream is clear, not muddy.” The SDRF/NDRF team found the lake over 200 metres long and 50 metres wide. The team has started work to set up a temporary helipad near the artificial lake site. Meanwhile, rescue teams on Saturday began boring a wider and deeper hole into the tunnel at the flood-ravaged Tapovan-Vishnugad hydel project in an attempt to reach the around 35 people believed trapped inside for nearly a week. The Silt Flushing Tunnel (SFT) was punctured on Friday night by drilling a 75 mm-diameter hole into it but now it is being widened to 300 mm so that a camera and a water flushing pipe could be inserted into the tunnel where the trapped are possibly located, general manager of the NTPC project, R P Ahirwal, said. Rescuers said they were still hopeful of finding survivors, notwithstanding the challenges like the muck and the water from Dhauli Ganga constantly flowing into the tunnels. 38 people have been dead and 166 missing since the mishap. The right to protest cannot be anytime and everywhere, the Supreme Court said as it dismissed a plea seeking review of its verdict passed last year in which it had held that the occupation of public ways during the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protests at Shaheen Bagh here was not acceptable. The top court said there may be some spontaneous protests but in case of prolonged dissent or protest, there cannot be continued occupation of public place affecting the rights of others. A bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Aniruddha Bose and Kirshna Murari said, “We have perused the review petition and record of the civil appeal and are convinced that the order of which review has been sought, does not suffer from any error apparent warranting its reconsideration.” The bench, which has passed the order recently, said it has considered the earlier judicial pronouncements and recorded its opinion that the Constitutional scheme comes with a right to protest and express dissent but with an obligation to have certain duties. PTI Radio remains a powerful broadcaster in Covid age ASHA RAMACHANDRAN NEW DELHI, 13 FEBRUARY Celebrating the 10th year of World Radio Day on 13 February and over 110 years of this medium, radios around the globe are connecting with their communities in various ways. Proclaimed in 2011 by the member states of UNESCO and adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 2012 as an International Day, 13 February became World Radio Day (WRD). On this occasion, UNESCO also called on radio stations to observe this day through three themes ~ evolution, innovation and connection. Despite inroads made by the electronic media, including TV, Internet and social media, radio continues to hold its own and remains, even today, the most powerful medium of communication. In its message, UNESCO said, “Radio is a powerful medium for celebrating humanity in all its diversity and constitutes a platform for democratic discourse. At the global level, radio remains the most widely consumed medium. This unique ability to reach out the widest audience means radio can shape a society’s experience of diversity, stand as an arena for all voices to speak out, be represented and heard. Radio stations should serve diverse communities, offering a wide variety of programs, viewpoints and content, and reflect the diversity of audiences in their organisations and operations.” In India, radio has evolved over the years to adapt and innovate according to the ever-changing world. It has proved to be invaluable during natural disasters, epidemics and emer- When the entire world stood challenged by the Covid-19 pandemic in early 2020, the local community radio stations continued their broadcasts to keep people informed and connect local authorities with the community gency situations, emerging as a resilient and sustainable form of communication. In this context, community radios (CRs) have played an important role in providing the last mile link for people, who either live in mediadark areas, remote villages, or are affected by disasters. More recently, when the entire world stood challenged by the Covid-19 pandemic in early 2020, the local community radio stations continued their broadcasts to keep people informed and connect local authorities with the community. The community radios also became the bridge between medical departments and the local people. “Since community radio caters to a small geographic area, the new media such as live-streaming and mobile apps have helped to provide programme content access to and from anywhere in the world,” said Pooja O Murada, Principal Lead, Outreach for Development, S M Sehgal Foundation, which has initiated a community radio Alfaz-e-Mewat in Nuh district of Haryana. “Another communication tool, podcasting, is promising as it can entertain, inform and expand the coverage without too much screen engagement. During Covid times, we also launched our podcast channel called SMSF Connect, which is a go-to place for information about rural development themes and select radio campaigns on health and hygiene.” Situated in the foothills of the Aravali mountain range in village Ghaghas of Nuh district, Alfaz-e-Mewat FM 107.8 broadcasted nonstop since the outbreak of the pandemic. Covid response at the radio station began as early as February 2020 and continued to focus on awareness generation about the virus and prevention. The very first broadcasts at the station were done with the district magistrate, the chief medical officer and senior medical officer of the nearest hospital. The Covid programming ensured that listeners receive timely updates on the pandemic, clear information from credible sources and on the do’s and don’ts to safeguard themselves from Covid-19, together with sharing on positivity and mental well-being through psychologists. Rural schoolchildren have tuned in to radio for education amidst the pandemic. Alfaz-eMewat’s Radio School programme reached out to children across a number of villages in the Haryana district.
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