SUNDAY www.thestatesman.com 04 APRIL 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 MYANMAR’S CIVIL STRIFE TROUBLE MOUNTS FOR NEPAL PM AS OPP SEEKS RESIGNATION P6 P11 ‘REJECT THE CORRUPT DMK-CONG COMBINE’ P4 THE KOHLI TEAM THAT ALWAYS COME UP SHORT P12 RAINFALL: NIL RELATIVE HUMIDITY Covid nos skyrocket ‘Mamata used Singur for political gains’: Didi hits to nearly 90k in 1 day back with ‘outsider’ barb Max. 90 % STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE WEATHER Partly cloudy sky. Thundershower likely to occur. Temperature most likely to be in the range of 37-27 degrees Celsius. TEMPERATURE Highest daily rise in almost seven months with 714 deaths in last 24 hours Min. 24 % Max: 36.6°C (2) Min: 26.6°C (2) SUN RISES SUN SETS 05:27 hrs 17:52 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS 24:00 hrs 09:55 hrs Next moon quarter on 04 April THUMBNAILS UP CM Yogi Adityanath during an election rally in support of the party candidate Umesh Rai in Howrah district on Saturday. AGENCIES Five jawans killed in Maoist encounter: Five security personnel were killed and a few others injured on Saturday in an encounter with Maoists at a forest in Chhattisgarh's Bijapur district. Some Maoists are also suspected to have been killed during exchange. “The gunbattle broke out in Tarrem area when a joint team of security forces was out on an anti-Naxal operation,” Chhattisgarh DGP DM Awasthi said. EC halves campaigning ban on Himanta Sarma: The Election Commission reduced the 48-hour campaign ban imposed on Assam minister and BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma to 24 hours after he tendered an “unconditional apology” and assured the poll panel that he will abide by the model code. He was banned for allegedly making threatening remarks against Bodoland People's Front (BPF) chief Hagrama Mohilary. Kovind's health improving: President Ram Nath Kovind's health condition is improving and he has been shifted from ICU to a special room in AIIMS, the Rashtrapati Bhavan said . Kovind, 75 , on Tuesday underwent a cardiac bypass surgery at the AIIMS, New Delhi. NEW DELHI, 3 APRIL ndia on Saturday recorded 89,129 new Covid-19 cases in a day, the highest daily rise in around six-andhalf-months, taking the nationwide tally of infections to over 1.23 crore, according to the Union Health Ministry data on Saturday. The death toll increased to 1,64,110 with 714 more fatalities in a day, also the highest since 21 October. Maharashtra has reported the highest daily new cases at 47,913, followed by 4,991 in Karnataka and 4,174 in Chhattisgarh. Twelve states~ Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Punjab, Karnataka, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Kerala~ are displaying an upward trajectory in daily new cases, the health ministry said. Eight states~ Maharashtra, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh, are witnessing a steep rise in daily new Covid-19 cases and account for 81.42 per cent of the infections reported on Saturday, the Union Health Ministry said. India’s tally of Covid19 active caseload also increased to 6,58,909 and now comprises 5.32 per cent of the total infections. In a day, there has been a net rise of 44,213 active cases. Maharashtra alone accounts for 59.36 per cent of the total active caseload of the country. I FRIGHTENING SCENARIO Eight states~ Maharashtra, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, UP, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh, are witnessing a steep rise in daily new Covid cases and account for 81.42 per cent of the infections Maharashtra alone accounts for 59.36 per cent of the total active caseload of the country. Twelve states~ Maha- Covid vaccination administrated at UPHC Darya Ganj Dispensary in the Capital on Saturday. SUBRATA DUTTA Ten districts~ Pune, Mumbai, Nagpur, Thane, Nashik, Bengaluru Urban, Aurangabad, Delhi, Ahmednagar and Nanded - account for 50 per cent of the total active caseload of the country. Maharashtra has reported the highest daily new cases at 47,913, followed by 4,991 in Karnataka and 4,174 in Chhattisgarh. Maharashtra has shown a nine-fold jump, the maximum increase in the number of active cases in the last two months. In percentage terms, Punjab has reported the maximum increase in active cases, the Ministry data said. India’s cumulative recoveries stand at 1,15,69,241 with 44,202 recoveries being registered in a day. Thirteen states and UTs have not reported any 1,23,92,260 A CRPF personnel gives swab sample for Covid tests, in Gurugram rashtra, Chhattisgarh, Punjab, Karnataka, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, Rajas-than, UP and Kerala~ are displaying an upward trajectory in daily new cases In a significant development in fight against Covid, the cumulative number of vaccine doses administered in the country has crossed 7.3 crore mark. Covid-19 deaths in a day. These are Odisha, Assam, Ladakh, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Manipur, Tripura, Sikkim, Lakshadweep, Mizoram, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Arunachal Pradesh. In a significant development in the fight against Covid-19, cumulatively, the cumulative number of vaccine doses administered in the country has crossed 7.3 crore mark, through 11,53,614 session, sources in the Health Ministry said. Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba chaired a high-level review meeting on Friday with chief secretaries, directors general of police and health secretaries of all states, with a focus on 11 states and Union Territo- 6,58,909 89,129 SNS & PTI KOLKATA, 3 APRIL 44,202 1,64,110 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. SATURDAY 03 APRIL 2021 ries that have been reporting a very high rise in daily cases and fatality because of Covid-19 in the last two weeks. These states and UTs “of grave concern” were advised to take up immediate steps to ensure containment of active cases and daily deaths through enhan-ced testing, prompt contact tracing and enforcement of Covidappropriate behaviour . Bengal cases witness sharp rise:West Bengal registered 1,736 fresh Covid cases and 5 deaths today. The total Covid case count is 5,91,658 and death toll is 10,340 in the state till now while there are 8,844 active cases. Kolkata recorded 528 cases and 2 deaths in the last 24 hours. ‘Puzzled at cacophony over not being invited at Biden’s climate summit’ Alert bus driver saves lives of passengers before death in HP STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE SHIMLA, 3 APRIL NEW DELHI, 3 APRIL Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has not taken kindly to the comments and interpretations being made in newspapers and the social media on US President Joe Biden ignoring him while inviting 40 world leaders to the “Leaders' Summit on Climate” he will hold virtually on 22-23 April. Khan took to Twitter today to say, “I am puzzled at the cacophony over Pak not being invited to a climate change conf! My govt’s environment policies are driven solely by our commitment to our future generations of a clean & green Pakistan to mitigate the impact of climate change.” The Pakistani leader said he has already laid out priorities for the UN Climate Change Conference 2021 (COP26) if the international community was serious about countering the impact of climate change. Khan tweets notwithstanding, Islamabad appears clearly upset that its leadership was ignored by the American leader for the muchanticipated summit. US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry, who will be in South Asia next week, has also chosen to visit New Delhi and Dhaka but will skip Islamabad. Pakistan Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri had earlier said that his country’s commitment to addressing the climate change crisis was “well accepted and appreciated around the world.” ‘No trade with India under current scenario': PM Imran Khan decided that Pakistan cannot go ahead with any trade with India under the current circumstances after holding consultations with key members of his Cabinet on importing cotton and sugar from the neighbouring country, a media report said. SANJEEV KUMAR Timely action and alert thinking of a driver of private bus in Paonta Sahib in Sirmaur district of Himachal Pradesh, around 220 km from here, saved the lives of 15 passengers after he suffered heart attack while driving. The driver turned the bus towards bushes on the roadside, otherwise the vehicle would have veered off the road and fell into deep gorge which might have resulted in many casualties. Deputy Superintendent of Police, Paonta Sahib Bir Bahadur said the incident took place on Friday evening when the private bus was on its way to Paonta Sahib from Sataun. “The driver identified as Ashok Kumar (46) was on its way to Paonta Sahib from Sataun when he suffered heart attack near Rajban Check Post. Fearing worst, Ashok turned the bus towards forest away from deep gorge which led to the private bus stopping after colliding with bushes,” Bir Bahadur told The Statesman. Bahadur said Ashok, a resident of Bhanedi village in Kamrau tehsil in Paonta Sahib, was rushed to hospital for further medical treatment where he was declared dead on arrival. Police said all the passengers escaped unhurt in the accident and further investigations in the case were on. Panel submits report on Nambi’s illegal arrest PRESS TRUST OF INDIA NEW DELHI, 3 APRIL A high-level probe panel appointed by the Supreme Court to take erring cops to task for causing “tremendous harassment” and “immeasurable anguish” to ISRO scientist Dr Nambi Narayanan in the 1994 espionage case has submitted its report to the apex court, sources said. The SC had on 14 September, 2018 appointed the three-member panel headed by its former judge D K Jain while directing the Kerala government to cough up Rs 50 lakh compensation for compelling Narayanan to undergo “immense humiliation”. The scientist was arrested when the Congress was heading the government in Kerala. 1994 ISRO ESPIONAGE CASE The espionage case, which had hit the headlines in 1994, pertained to allegations of transfer of certain confidential documents on India’s space programme to foreign countries by two scientists and four others. Dr Nambi Narayanan was arrested when the Congress was heading the government in Kerala The panel, after investigation, submitted its report in a sealed cover to the apex court recently. The CBI, in its probe, had held that the then top police officials in Kerala were responsible for Narayanan's illegal arrest. The case also had its political fallout, with a section in the Congress targeting the then chief minister late K Karunakaran over the issue, that eventually led to his resigna- tion. Over a period of almost two-and-a-half years, the panel headed by Justice Jain examined the circumstances leading to the arrest. The espionage case, which had hit the headlines in 1994, pertained to allegations of transfer of certain confidential documents on India’s space programme to foreign countries by two scientists and four others, including two Maldivian women. The 79-year-old former scientist, who was given a clean chit by the CBI, maintained that the Kerala Police had “fabricated” the case and the technology he was accused to have stolen and sold in the 1994 case did not even exist at that time. Narayanan had approached the apex court against a Kerala High Court judgement that said “no action needed to be taken” against former DGP Siby Mathews, who was then heading the SIT probe team, two retired superintendents of police, K K Joshua and S Vijayan, and the then Deputy Director, Intelligence Bureau, R B Shreekumar, who were later held responsible by the CBI for the scientist's illegal arrest. The apex court in its judgement had said, “The obtain- ing factual scenario calls for constitution of a committee to find out ways and means to take appropriate steps against the erring officials.” “The criminal law was set in motion without any basis. It was initiated on some kind of fancy or notion,” a bench headed by the then Chief Justice Dipak Misra had said. “We are of the view that the appellant was arrested and he has suffered custody for almost 50 days. His arrest has been seriously criticised in the closure report of the CBI. From the aforesaid report, the harassment and mental torture faced by the appellant is obvious,” the bench added. The judgement had said the prosecution was “malicious and it has caused tremendous harassment and immeasurable anguish” to Narayanan. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday alleged the “obstructionist mindset” of chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her TMC deprived West Bengal of industries and jobs. He claimed that the TMC supremo hurt people’s self-respect by claiming they are attending BJP rallies after taking money. The Prime Minister also mocked Banerjee for her frequent criticism of the Electronic Voting Machines and the Election Commission. “She keeps criticising EVM, the EC...If players keep criticising umpires, you should know their “Khela shesh” (the game’s over),” he told an election rally here in Hooghly district. Referring to the Singur movement of 2006-08 that forced Tata Motors to move out its proposed small car Nano’s production unit from there, Modi said the Trinamul used the place for political purposes and then left the people to fend for themselves. “Didi and her party’s obstructionist mindset blocked several industri- She keeps criticising EVMs, the Election Commission..If players keep criticising umpires, you should know their Khela shesh (the game’s over) PM NARENDRA MODI ELECTION RALLY HERE IN HOOGHLY DISTRICT al, infrastructure and connectivity projects. I have never seen a party which takes pride in stopping industries and development. “We all know what happened in neighbouring Singur. They used it for furthering their politics and then left the people in limbo. Today, it has no industries and farmers are in distress,” he said. Seeking to punch a hole in the TMC’s poll plank of Bengali pride, Modi claimed Banerjee hurt people’s selfrespect by claiming they attend BJP rallies after taking money. “Didi has got jittery after sensing defeat. That’s why she is criticising everybody and everything, from EC to EVMs. She is abusing me. But while abusing me, she has hurt the selfrespect of the people of Bengal by saying they are taking money to attend our rallies. West Bengal chief min- West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee while addressing an election rally in Raidighi on Saturday accused the BJP of engineering communal strife in the state to win the Assembly elections. ister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday accused the BJP of engineering communal strife in the state to win the Assembly elections. The TMC chief, while addressing an election rally in Raidighi in South 24 Parganas district, also called upon Muslims not to “fall in the trap of a BJP-aided party from Hyderabad and its Bengal ally that are out to polarise votes.” Her jibe was aimed at Asaduddin Owaisi-led AIMIM and Abbas Siddiqui’s ISF. The ISF is fighting the elections in alliance with the CPI(M) and Congress. The TMC supremo also urged Hindus to be on the guard against the BJP’s attempts to “instigate communal clashes” and called upon them to chase away outsiders sent to foment trouble in their localities. Details on Page 5
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