CMYK FRIDAY www.thestatesman.com 26 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 ARMENIAN PM FACES MILITARY’S DEMAND TO RESIGN NEERA TANDEN’S CONFIRMATION VOTE GETS DELAYED P9 P10 WEATHER Mainly clear sky. Maximum and minimum temperature most likely to be around 34 °C and 21 °C respectively. RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max. 95% TEMPERATURE Max: 34.5°C (3) Min: 19.5°C (N) SUN RISES SUN SETS 06:01 hrs 17:38 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS 15:41 hrs 04:32 hrs Full moon on 27 February THUMBNAILS Farmers during a demonstration against the new farm laws at the Ghazipur Border, in the Capital on Thursday. SNS LPG price hiked by Rs 25 per cylinder: Cooking gas LPG price on Thursday was hiked by Rs 25 per cylinder across all categories, including subsidised fuel and those availed by Ujjwala scheme beneficiaries. This is the third increase in rates this month on the back of spiralling international rates as demand recovered. A 14.2-kg cylinder in Delhi now costs Rs 794 as against Rs 769 at which they were supplied on Wednesday, according to a notification from fuel retailers. Centre opposes same-sex marriage: Marriage s in India is not just a union of two individuals but an institution between biological man and woman, the Centre told the Delhi High Court on Thursday while opposing same-sex marriage. It also said that judicial interference will cause “complete havoc with the delicate balance of personal laws”. Any interpretation other than treating a husband as a biological man and a wife as a biological woman will make all statutory provisions unworkable, it said. STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 25 FEBRUARY he Centre on Thursday came out with stringent guidelines for social media platforms along with a code of ethics for overthe-top (OTT) platforms and digital media. The sweeping regulations for social media firms like Facebook and Twitter, as well as OTT players such as Netflix, require them to remove any content flagged by authorities within 36 hours and to set up a complaint redressal mechanism with an officer being based in the country. The guidelines also make it mandatory for platforms such as Twitter and WhatsApp to identify the originator of a message that authorities consider to be anti-national and against security and sovereignty of the country. This is the first time such rules have been framed for digital and online media operating within the country's jurisdiction. The norms on social media come weeks after a spat between the government and Twitter over certain messages around farmer protests that the government saw as inciting violence. The government sought removal of about 1,500 accounts and messages, a request that Twitter complied with only after being warned of penal action. Union Minister for Electronics and IT, Ravi Shankar Prasad, said that T AHMEDABAD, 25 FEBRUARY Left-arm spinner Axar Patel created an illusion of turn with 11 straighter deliveries that put India on the brink of the World Test Championship final with a 10-wicket demolition of England inside two days in the day-night third Test here on Thursday. In only his second Test, Patel (15-0-32-5), with a matchhaul of 11/70, relentlessly hit the good length area and hoodwinked England batsmen, who played for turn only to find that there was none on offer from him. The result was their lowest total against India ~ 81 all out in 30.4 overs leaving the hosts with a target of 49 which they achieved with minimum fuss, taking a 2-1 lead in the four-match series. At the other end, off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin (15-3-48-4) was an ideal foil, becoming the fourth Indian bowler and second fastest in the world to complete a milestone of 400 Test wickets with the dismissal of Jofra Archer. Incidentally, after Afghanistan’s debut Test in 2018 in Bengaluru, this was the second time that India won a Test match, well inside two days. This was after England skipper Joe Root’s fabulous career-best spell of 6.2-3-8-5 resulted in India’s dramatic collapse from 114 for 3 to 145 all out. India lost as many as seven wickets for only 31 runs after looking solid at 114 for 3 at one stage in the game but England lost all 10 in an entire session in which no pacer was seen in action. Ironically, it was the nonturning deliveries from Patel that had the England’s rank and file pressing the panic button as they pre-empted away turn every time. Whether it was Zak Crawley, Jonny Bairstow or skipper Root, everyone lost the mind-game as Ashwin also joined the fun with records tumbling one after another. When Patel sent back Ben Foakes, he became the first spinner to get 11 wickets in a pink ball Test match. Following the two-day finish, ICC will be watching the Motera track with a ‘Hawk Eye’ even though the debate can continue for ages whether it was the turn that did the batsmen in or the lack of it. The turn on offer was standard for any sub-continental track and no deliveries misbehaved. However, all eyes will now be on ICC match referee Javagal Srinath from India and his assessment of the 22-yard strip. More on Page 12 REGULATION OR CLAMPDOWN? The sweeping regulations for social media firms like Facebook and Twitter, as well as OTT players such as Netflix, require them to remove any content flagged by authorities within 36 hours and to set up a complaint redressal mechanism with an officer being based in the country A Code of Ethics and three-tier grievance redressal mechanism would be applicable for news publishers, OTT platforms and digital media. Social media intermediaries providing services primarily in the nature of massaging will be required to enable identification of the “first originator” of the information that undermines sovereignty of India, security of the state, or public order. social media platforms will be classified under two categories - social media intermediaries and significant social media intermediaries - with the latter being subject to greater obligations. The government will soon notify a list of significant social media intermediaries soon, the minister said. The Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules 2021 mandate that the intermediaries, including social media intermediaries, must establish a grievance redressal mechanism for receiving and resolving complaints from the users or victims. Intermediaries will have to appoint a Grievance Officer to deal with such complaints and share the name and contact details of such officer. Grievance Officer shall acknowledge the complaint within twenty-four hours and resolve it within fifteen days from its receipt, said an official statement. Further, significant social media intermediaries providing services primarily in the nature of messaging shall enable identification of the originator of information at the request of authorities with regard to offences related to sovereignty and integrity of India, the security of the state, friendly relations with foreign states, or public order or of incitement to an offence relating to rape, sexually explicit material or child sexual abuse. The norm would be applicable to offences under which an offender would be punishable with imprisonment for a term of not less than five years. Further, the significant platforms will have to appoint a Chief Compliance Officer, a Nodal Contact Person, a Resident Grievance Officer. In cases where significant social media intermediaries remove or disable access to any information on their own accord, P12 India, Pakistan agree to cease cross-border firing Govt tightens rules for social media Axar wreaks mayhem at Motera as India win inside two days PRESS TRUST OF INDIA P7 ASHOK TUTEJA New norms come after spat between Govt and Twitter over farmers stir Min. 29% ‘YOU CAN WAIT FOR TIGER TO ROAR AGAIN’ A GANDHIAN PRIME MINISTER then a prior intimation for the same shall be communicated to the user who has shared that information with a notice explaining the grounds and reasons for such action. Users will get to dispute the action taken by the intermediary, as per the new norms. The rules will come in effect from the date of their publication in the gazette, except for the additional due diligence for significant social media intermediaries, which shall come in effect 3 months after publication of these Rules. Further, for online news, OTT platforms and digital media platforms, the government has set up threelevel grievance redressal mechanism under the rules with different levels of selfregulation. The levels are self-regulation by the publishers, self-regulation by the selfregulating bodies of the publishers, oversight mechanism and self-classification of content. As per the Code of Ethics, the publisher shall appoint a Grievance Redressal Officer based in India who shall be responsible for the redressal of grievances received by it. The officer shall take decision on every grievance received by it within 15 days. There may be one or more self-regulatory bodies of publishers. Such a body shall be headed by a retired judge of the Supreme Court, a High Court or independent eminent person and have not more than six members. Daily new cases go above 16,000 NEW DELHI, 25 FEBRUARY In a major development in their chequered relationship, India and Pakistan have agreed to strictly observe all bilateral agreements and understandings and cease firing along the Line of Control (LoC) with effect from the midnight of 24/25 February. “In the interest of achieving mutually beneficial and sustainable peace along the borders, the two DGMOs (Directors General of Military Operations) agreed to address each other’s core issues and concerns which have propensity to disturb peace and lead to violence,” said a joint statement issued by the two sides today. It said the DGMOs of the two sides reviewed the situation along the LoC and all other sectors in a free, frank and cordial atmosphere. Both sides reiterated that existing mechanisms of hotline contact and border flag meetings would be utilised to resolve any NEW DELHI/KOLKATA, 25 FEBRUARY Daily new Covid-19 case numbers rose above 15,000 after nearly a month, taking the country's total tally of coronavirus cases to 1,10,46,914, according to Union health ministry data updated on Thursday. Daily deaths also went above 130 after a gap of 26 days The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare cautioned that the Covid-19 situation in seven states is deteriorating since cases there have contributed 89.5 per cent to the tally. A total of 16,738 infections were reported in a day, while the death toll increased to 1,56,705 with 138 new fatalities, the data updated at 8 a.m. showed. On 29 January, 18,855 new infections were recorded in a span of 24 hours after which each day’s additional caseload stayed below 15,000. The active caseload increased to 1,51,708 which comprises 1.37 percent of the total infections. The Ministry said that Maharashtra and Kerala continue to report the highest daily new cases while the situation in Chhattisgarh, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh has been deteriorating for a few days. In addition, two states ~ Gujarat and Tamil Nadu ~ which were reporting low figures, are now witnessing a resurgence of cases. Of the 16,738 fresh cases reported in the past 24 hours, according to the Union health ministry’s data, Maharashtra saw the highest daily new cases at 8,807. It is followed by Kerala with 4,106 while Punjab reported 558 new cases. Maharashtra also accounted for 80 of the fatalities. Maharashtra’s figures for Thursday were 8,702 new cases and 56 deaths. PRESS TRUST OF INDIA 1,10,46,914 1,51,708 16,738 11,799 1,56,705 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. THURSDAY 25 FEBRUARY 2021 JOINT STATEMENT FROM INDIA AND PAKISTAN unforeseen situation or misunderstanding. The joint statement is being considered an attempt by both nations to adhere to the ceasefire agreement that was reached between them in 2003. Despite the hostility in the bilateral relationship from time to time, the two countries have maintained contact at the DGMOs level over the hotline since 1987. In the last few years, ceasefire violations between the two countries have increased considerably, leading to heightened ten- Nirav Modi can be extradited to India: UK court LONDON, 25 FEBRUARY SNS & PTI “In the interest of achieving mutually beneficial and sustainable peace along the borders, the two DGMOs (Directors General of Military Operations) agreed to address each other’s core issues and concerns which have prop-ensity to disturb peace and lead to violence” In a comprehensive extradition win for the Indian authorities, a UK judge ruled on Thursday that fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi not only has a case to answer in the Indian courts but that there is no evidence to suggest he would not receive a fair trial in India. Nirav Modi, wanted in India on charges of fraud and money laundering in the estimated $2-billion Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam case, lost his legal battle against extradition on all grounds as District Judge Samuel Goozee also concluded that there are no human rights concerns that his medical needs would not be addressed as per several Indian government assurances. The 49-yearold appeared via video link at Westminster Magistrates’ Court from Wandsworth Prison in south-west London, dressed in a formal suit and sporting a thick beard. “I am satisfied that there is evidence upon which NDM [Nirav Deepak Modi] could be convicted in relation [to] the conspiracy to defraud the PNB. A prima facie case is established,” the judge noted. He similarly concludes a prima facie case to have been established on all counts of charges brought by the Central Bureau of Investigation and Enforcement Directorate money laundering, intimidation of witnesses and disappearance of evidence. “I am not required to exclude all Mr Modi’s various alternative theoretical possibilities and narratives; nor exclude his personal interpretation of the evidence, in order to find a prima facie case has been established, the judge noted, referring to the extradition case of former Kingfisher Airlines boss Vijay Mallya as precedent. Under the UK Extradition Act 2003, the judge will now send his findings to the Secretary of State for Home Affairs, Priti Patel. sions and a large number of casualties on both sides. Pakistan escalated the situation after India stripped Jammu and Kashmir of its special status in August 2019. In December, data from security agencies showed Pakistan violated ceasefire across the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir 5,100 times, highest in 18 years. The violations claimed 36 lives and injured over 130. The joint statement, which could bring down the temperatures between the two nuclear-armed neighbours, came two days after India permitted Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan to use Indian air space while travelling to Sri Lanka. Yesterday, Chief of Army Staff, Gen M M Naravane had expressed confidence that with continued engagement with Pakistan, there could be some sort of an understanding. Pakistan Army chief, Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa had also recently called for resolving the Jammu and Kashmir issue in a “dignified and peaceful” manner. Toolkit case: Court grants arrest cover to Shantanu NEW DELHI, 25 FEBRUARY A court here on Thursday granted protection from arrest till 9 March to Shantanu Muluk, who is accused along with Disha Ravi in connection with allegedly being involved in sharing a “toolkit” on social media related to the farmers’ protest. Muluk along with Ravi and another co accused Nikita Jacob, was booked for alleged sedition and other charges. Additional Sessions Judge Dharmender Rana granted the relief after Delhi police said it needed time to conduct further interrogation before filing a detailed reply to Muluk’s anticipatory bail plea. The judge directed the police not to take any coercive action against Muluktill 9 March, when court will further hear the matter. Muluk had got transit bail from Bombay High Court on 16 February for a period of 10 days, with a direction to approach the court concerned. In his application, Muluk has said that he merely created the toolkit with information on the agitation, which was then edited by others without his knowledge. According to the police, the ‘Toolkit’ was a sinister design to defame India and cause violence. PTI Compensate Indian newspapers, INS asks Google STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 25 FEBRUARY The Indian Newspaper Society (INS) has asked the global search engine giant Google to compensate Indian newspapers comprehensively for the use of content published by the newspapers, and share its advertising revenues with them properly. In a letter addressed to Google India’s country manager Sanjay Gupta, INS president L Adimoolam demanded that Google should pay for news generated by the newspapers, which employ thousands of journalists on the ground, for gathering and verifying information, said a statement issued by the INS. The content which is generated and published by news- “Publishers have been providing complete access to quality journalism with credible news, current affairs, analysis, information and entertainment. There is a huge distinction between the editorial content from quality publications and fake news that is spreading on other information platforms” THE INDIAN NEWSPAPER SOCIETY papers at considerable expense is proprietary, the INS noted. Pointing out that publishers have been providing complete access to “quality journalism with credible news, current affairs, analysis, information and entertainment”, the INS president stated that “there is a huge distinction between the editorial content from quality publications and fake news that is spreading on other information platforms”. He noted, in his letter, that over the past year publishers across the world have been raising the issue of fair payment for content and of proper sharing of advertising revenue with Google. “It is also noted that Google has recently agreed to better compensate and pay publishers in France, the European Union and notably in Australia.” Further, it was also pointed out that advertising has been the financial backbone of the news industry. However, newspaper publishers are seeing their share of the advertising pie shrinking in the digital space, even as Google is taking a giant CMYK share of advertising spends, leaving publishers with a small share, the INS said. “Publishers are also facing a very opaque advertising system, as they are unable to get details of Google’s advertising value chain,” it said, insisting that Googleshould increase the publisher share of advertising revenue to 85 per cent, and also ensure more transparency in the revenue reports that it provided to publishers. The INS also stressed on giving greater prominence to editorial content from registered news publishers to tackle fake news, as Google picks up content from several sites that are not credible, thus “amplifying misinformation and propagation of fake news”. Facebooksays it will pay $1B over 3 years to news industry MENLO PARK (US), FEB 25 Facebook, following in Google’s footsteps, says it plans to invest $1 billion to “support the news industry over the next three years. The social networking giant, which has been tussling with Australia over a law that would make social platforms pay news organisations, said it has invested $600 million since 2018 in news. Google said in October that it would pay publishers $1 billion over the next three years. News companies want Google and Facebook to pay for the news that appears on their platforms. Governments in Europe and Australia are sympathetic to this point of view. The two tech companies suck up the majority of US digital advertising dollars, which among other problems has hurt publishers. Facebook said on Tuesday it would lift a ban on news links after the Australian government agreed to tweak proposed legislation that would help publishers negotiate payments with FB and Google.
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