CMYK MONDAY www.thestatesman.com 22 FEBRUARY 2021 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 12 |` 5.00|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR WEATHER Mainly clear sky. Fog/mist in the morning. Temperature most likely to be in the range of 30-17 degrees Celsius. CBI comes knocking Centre writes to states with Covid-19 spikes at Abhishek’s door RAINFALL: NIL RELATIVE HUMIDITY TMC Youth leader’s wife, sister-in-law get notice for CBI questioning Max. 86% SNS & PTI TEMPERATURE Min. 34% Max: 30.3°C (N) Min: 16.9°C (-2) SUN RISES SUN SETS 06:04 hrs 17:37 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS 12:03 hrs 01:00 hrs Full moon quarter on 27 February THUMBNAILS Novak Djokovic has beaten Daniil Medvedev 75 6-2 6-2 to win his ninth Australian Open P12 championship and 18th Grand Slam title. Bengal govt cuts fuel tax: The West Bengal government on Sunday announced a reduction of tax by Re 1 per litre on petrol and diesel effective from midnight of February 22. State finance minister Amit Mitra said the move will provide some respite to people P2 stung by burgeoning prices of fuel. NEW DELHI/KOLKATA, 21 FEBRUARY CBI team on Sunday went to the Kolkata residence of Abhishek Banerjee, Trinamul Congress MP and chief minister Mamata Banerjee's nephew, serving a notice to his wife and his sister-in-law to join the probe in the coal pilferage case, a development that further raised the political temperature in poll-bound West Bengal. The TMC accused the ruling BJP at the Centre of a political vendetta and Abhishek Banerjee said they would not be cowed down by such tactics. “Don't try to intimidate us with jail, we have fought against guns and are not afraid of fighting against rats,” a fuming Mamata Banerjee said at an event soon after the CBI action. The agency team handed over the notice issued by Investigation Officer Umesh Kumar, Addition- A al Superintendent of Police in the CBI, in connection with the case of theft of coal from the mines of Eastern Coalfields Ltd in West Bengal in which Anup Manjhi is the alleged mastermind, sources said. The notice issued on Sunday asked Abhishek Banerjee's wife Rujira Banerjee to remain present at her address on Harish Mukherjee Road on the same day “for the purpose of answering certain ques- tions relating to the case”, they said. “However, she could not be questioned today,” a source said. Rujira's sister Menaka Gambhir has been asked by the CBI to join the probe on Monday when she will be quizzed by the investigation team, the sources said. “At 2 p.m. today, the CBI served a notice in the name of my wife. We have full faith in the law of the land. However, if they think CMYK they can use these ploys to intimidate us, they are mistaken. We are not the ones who would ever be cowed down,” Abhishek Banerjee tweeted. The notice to Banerjee's family members from the central agency came a day before a court in Kolkata is due to hear a defamation case filed by him against Union home minister Amit Shah who is spearheading the BJP campaign in the state. The court has summoned Shah to appear before it “personally or through a pleader” on Monday. Banerjee's lawyer Sanjay Basu had claimed that Shah had made certain defamatory statements against the TMC MP on 11 August 2018, during a BJP rally at Mayo Road in Kolkata. The sources said the central probe agency had on Friday carried out a fresh round of searches in connection with the coal theft case. More on Page 2 SNS & PTI Central advisory NEW DELHI/KOLKATA, 21 FEBRUARY With a spike in daily new cases of Covid-19 in some states including Maharashtra and Kerala, the Centre has advised them to increase the proportion of RT-PCR tests and regularly monitor mutant strains besides refocusing on strict surveillance and stringent containment in affected districts. India has been witnessing a rise in the Covid-19 active caseload over the past few days whichis pegged at 1,45,634 as on date. New Covid-19 cases registered an increase for the fourth consecutive day with 14,264 new cases recorded in the previous 24 hours, taking the total tally to 1,09,91,651. The death toll increased to 1,56,302 with 90 new fatalities, the data updated at 8 am showed. “More than 74 per cent of the active cases of the country are in Kerala and Maharashtra. Of late it is seen that there has been a spike in the daily cases in Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh also. Punjab and 1,09,91,651 1,45,634 14,264 11,667 1,56,302 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. SUNDAY 21 FEBRUARY 2021 The five states which are now a cause of concern have been advised by the Centre to improve the overall testing numbers by focusing on increasing the proportion of RT-PCR tests. It has asked them to refocus on strict and comprehensive surveillance as well as stringent containment in selected districts and conduct regular monitoring of the mutant strains. Jammu and Kashmir too are witnessing a surge in daily new cases,” the ministry said. In the last four weeks in Kerala, the average weekly cases have fluctuated between a high of 42,000 and a low of 34,800. Similarly, the weekly positivity in Kerala has ranged from 13.9 per cent to 8.9 per cent over the same period. In Maharashtra, in the last four weeks, the weekly cases have shown a rising trend and have increased from 18,200 to 21,300; while the weekly positivity has also increased from 4.7 per cent to 8 per cent. The weekly positivity rate in Punjab has increased from 1.4 per cent to 1.6 per cent, while the weekly cases in the last four weeks have seen a rise from 1300 to 1682. West Bengal, meanwhile, registered 182 fresh Covid-19 cases and 3 deaths, taking the total case count to 5,73,762 and death toll to 10,249 while there are 3,525 active cases. Kolkata recorded 61 cases and 2 deaths.
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