MONDAY www.thestatesman.com 12 JULY 2021 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 12 |` 5|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR ‘INDIA POISED FOR DOUBLE-DIGIT GROWTH THIS FISCAL’ ‘RISING POPULATION A HURDLE IN DEVELOPMENT’ P5 P8 P5 Generally cloudy sky with light rain/thundershowers. The maximum and minimum temperatures would be around 35 and 26 degrees Celsius respectively. RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max: 76% Min: 51% TEMPERATURE Max: 39.0°C (+3) SUN RISES 05:33 hrs MOON RISES 08:21 hrs Min: 28.8°C (+1) SUN SETS 19:22 hrs MOON SETS 21:21 hrs Consulate continues to operate with local staff: MEA STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 11 JULY T THUMBNAILS Teammates lift Argentina’s Lionel Messi after beating Brazil 1-0 in the Copa America final match at the Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro on Saturday. Argentina won its first major title since 1993 and Messi finally lifted his first major trophy for the national team, filling in one of the biggest gaps in his decorated career. (Match report on P12) Chariots reach outside the Jagannath temple on the eve of Rath Yatra in Puri on Sunday. IANS Richard Branson reaches space: Swashbuckling entrepreneur Richard Branson hurtled into space aboard his own winged rocket ship on Sunday in his boldest adventure yet, beating out fellow billionaire Jeff Bezos. Aeronautical engineer Sirisha Bandla became the third Indian-American woman to fly into space when she joined Branson on Virgin Galactic's first fully-crewed successful suborbital test P10 flight from the US state of New Mexico. Djokovic wins his sixth Wimbledon title: Novak Djokovic won the summit clash 6-7, 6-4, 6-4, 6-3 against first-time finalist Matteo Berrettini to win his sixth Wimbledon title and recordequaling 20th Grand Slam trophy. He's now level with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the list of most singles Grand Slam titles in men's tennis history. Indian-origin Samir Banerjee, meanwhile, won the boys’ singles title. P12 Twitter names resident grievance officer PRESS TRUST OF INDIA NEW DELHI, 11 JULY Amidst tussle with the government, Twitter has appointed a Resident Grievance Officer, days after it designated a chief compliance officer, as it also released its first India Transparency Report to meet the new IT rules. The US social media giant’s website has listed Vinay Prakash as the new grievance officer, providing contact details and procedure for users to report potential violations of its rules and terms. Twitter had previously appointed Dharmendra Chatur as its interim grievance officer for India after Twitter has also published its maiden compliance report. In its India Transparency Report: User Grievances and Proactive Monitoring July 2021 report, Twitter said it had received 94 grievances and “actioned” 133 URLs between 26 May and 25 June, 2021 the new IT rules came into force on 26 May. However, Chatur stepped down within weeks of taking over the key role. California-based Jeremy Kessel was named as India’s grievance redressal officer, on the platform’s website~ although the appointment did not meet the requirements of IT rules that clearly mandate key officers - grievance officer, chief compliance 2 terrorists of Al-Qaida-backed Q b outfit arrested from Lucknow PRESS TRUST OF INDIA LUCKNOW, 11 JULY Two terrorists of the Al-Qaidasupported Ansar Ghazwatul Hind were arrested from the outskirts of Uttar Pradesh’s capital Lucknow on Sunday, with government officials claiming they were planning explosions, including using “human bombs”, at several places in Uttar Pradesh. Minhaz Ahmed and Maseeruddin, both residents of Lucknow, were apprehended by the state police’s Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS). They were planning to “unleash terror activities on 15 August (Independence Day) in different cities of the state”, including Lucknow, Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Uttar Pradesh ATS personnel outside the house where two terrorists were arrested, at Dubagga on Sunday Prashant Kumar told reporters. “The ATS has arrested two active members belonging to Al-Qaida-supported ‘Ansar Ghazwatul Hind’. Minhaz Ahmed, a resident of Lucknow’s Dubagga area, and Maseeruddin, a resident of Lucknow’s Madiaon area, have been arrested. Explosive material has been recovered from them,” he said. Ahmed and Maseeruddin on the instructions of Umar Halmandi, the head of the Uttar Pradesh module of the Al-Qaida, along with their associates were planning to unleash terror activities on 15 August in different cities of the state, and capital Lucknow, the additional director general of police (ADGP) said. “They were planning explosions at important places, memorials and crowded places, and also to use human bombs,” Kumar said. He also said that there are members of this module not only from Lucknow, but also from Kanpur. Raids are being conducted at different places to apprehend associates of these terrorists, he said. officer and nodal officer to be resident in India. Twitter’s website on Sunday showed Vinay Prakash as the Resident Grievance Officer (RGO). Users can contact him using an email ID listed on the page. “Twitter can be contacted in India at the following address: 4th Floor, The Estate, 121 Dickenson Road, Bangalore 560 042,” it further said. Twitter has also published its maiden compliance report. In its India Transparency Report: User Grievances and Proactive Monitoring July 2021 report, Twitter said it had received 94 grievances and “actioned” 133 URLs between May 26 and June 25, 2021. Twitter said the majority of complaints received via Grievance Officer India channel during the reporting period fell into categories including defamation, Abuse/Harassment, Sensitive Adult Content, Impersonation and privacy infringement, IPrelated Infringement, and Misinformation/Synthetic and Manipulated Media. PRESS TRUST OF INDIA Wrong signals by models, difficulty in predicting wind patterns some of the major reasons behind the Indian Meteorological Department’s monsoon forecast for parts of north India going haywire as any relief from the oppressive heat eludes the region NEW DELHI, 11 JULY The Southwest Monsoon has reached almost all parts of the country but has stayed away from parts of north India. It is yet to reach Delhi, Haryana, parts of west Uttar Pradesh and west Rajasthan back, but its predictions are yet to come true. In its forecast on 13 June, the IMD had predicted that the Southwest Monsoon will reach Delhi by 15 June. However, a day later it said conditions are not favourable for its further advancement in this region. Then began a long ‘break-spell’ during which the Southwest Monsoon was weak over several parts of the country. On 1 July, the IMD said the moist easterly winds in the lower level from the Bay of Bengal are likely to establish gradually over parts of eastern India from 8 July, it had said. On 5 July, the IMD again said the monsoon is likely to he government today confirmed that it has brought back home several dozen diplomats and security personnel from Kandahar due to intense fighting there but denied that the country has closed its consulate in Afghanistan’s second largest city. “This is a purely temporary measure until the situation stabilises. The consulate continues to operate through our local staff members,” Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said in response to questions. It is understood that India has pulled out around 50 diplomats and security personnel from its consulate in Kandahar in Afghanistan in view of the deteriorating security situation and the Taliban gaining control of new areas around the southern Afghan city. A special aircraft of the Indian Air Force was sent on Saturday to bring back the Indian diplomats, officials and other staff members, including a group of IndoTibetan Border Police personnel. MEA spokesperson Bagchi, confirming the reports, said India is closely monitoring the evolving security situation in Afghanistan. “The safety and security of our personnel is paramount. The consulate gen- PULLED OUT A special aircraft of the Indian Air Force was sent on Saturday to bring back around 50 diplomats and security personnel, officials and other staff members, including a group of Indo-Tibetan Border Police personnel eral of India in Kandahar has not been closed. However, due to the intense fighting near Kandahar city, India-based personnel have been brought back for the time being,” he said. The spokesperson said India, as an important partner of Afghanistan, remained committed to a peaceful, sovereign and democratic Afghanistan. Taliban militants are said to be rapidly seizing control of a number of key areas in the Kandahar region as well as in western Afghanistan, triggering serious security concerns, as the United States looks to complete the withdrawal of its forces from the war-ravaged country by August-end. There were reports that at least two foreign missions in Mazar-e-Sharif, the capital of northern Balkh province, have closed their operation in view of the escalating violence in the region. For the time being, the Indian Embassy in Kabul and the consulate at Mazare-Sharif are open. Last week, Indian Ambassador Rudren- Decline in active cases slows, R-factor rises PTI/SNS NEW DELHI, 11 JULY Giving rise to fresh worries about the Covid-19 pandemic spiking again, the R-factor, which indicates the speed at which the infection is spreading in the country, has risen recently, indicating a slowing in the decline of active cases while Kerala and some of the north-east states have emerged as regions of concern. This is despite the nationwide tally of new cases remaining low, revealed an analysis by researchers at the Institute of Mathematical Sciences in Chennai. The R-factor has increased slightly to 0.88 in June-end after being at its lowest-ever value of 0.78 from mid-May till late last month. An R-factor of 0.88 means every 100 infected people on average pass on the infection to 88 other indi- People, flouting Covid norms, visit a crowded market, in Bengaluru on Sunday. viduals. The smaller the value of R is, the faster the decline. This comes amidst the unlocking process by many states as the deadly second wave, which infected lakhs and killed thousands during its peak in April-May, shows signs of ebbing. Sitabhra Sinha, who led the team of researchers, said the number of active cases is decreasing at a much slower rate for the nation as a whole, as well as in several individ- IMD’s faulty monsoon forecasts spell no relief for N. India Wrong signals by models, difficulty in predicting the outcomes of the interactions between the easterly and westerly winds were some of the major reasons behind the India Meteorological Department’s monsoon forecast for parts of north India going haywire, experts pointed out as any relief from the oppressive heat eludes the region. The Southwest Monsoon has reached almost all parts of the country but has stayed away from parts of north India. It is yet to reach Delhi, Haryana, parts of west Uttar Pradesh and west Rajasthan. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) had predicted that monsoon is expected to cover these parts by June~ a little less than a month P12 India evacuates diplomats from Kandahar END OF TWO LONG DROUGHTS WEATHER NEYMAR FALLS SHORT AZAD PITCHES HIS NEW POLITICAL OUTFIT AS ALTERNATIVE TO BSP spread into northwest India covering Punjab and north Haryana by 10 July. However, there were no signs of any relief even on 10 July. We could have told (the delayed onset) in the morning itself. However, we are monitoring all the defined parameters/ criteria for onset of monsoon over Kerala. At present the criteria are not fully satisfied, IMD Director General Mrutunjay Mohapatra had said on May 30. Mohapatra said the forecast models did not show consistency in the interactions of the easterlies and the westerlies~the two dominant wind patterns. Mohapatra added that the accuracy of the models is reasonably good when it comes to forecasts up to two weeks but not as good for forecasts for four weeks. M Rajeevan, Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences, who has spent over 35 years studying the Southwest Monsoon, said the forecast models gave wrong signals. The models have picked up very well some of the broader events like a break in the monsoon and its revival a week ago. But when it comes to local forecasts, there is an issue, Rajeevan said. With regards to the forecast of advancement of monsoon over parts of north India, including Delhi, it was too early. The IMD should not have issued the forecast. They could have waited for some more time, he said. Tracking the interactions of the westerlies and the easterlies is the most difficult part in monsoon forecast, Mohapatra’s predecessor K J Ramesh said. ual states. “Kerala showed a brief spike in cases and its R continues to hover close to 1. The north-east region is of great concern. Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh and Tripura are showing a rise in the number of cases,” Sinha noted. When the second wave of the Covid-19 infection was at its peak, the overall R-value in the country was estimated to be 1.37 between 9 March to 21 April. It then progressively declined, falling to 0.82 in May 14-30. The R-value was 0.78 from May 15 to June 26 and 0.88 from June 20 to July 7. Kerala reported 14,087 fresh Covid cases on Saturday along with 109 fatalities. On Sunday, it reported 12,220 new case and 72 fatalities. D e l h i c a s e s : Delhi today reported 53 coronavirus infections ~ the lowest since 15 April last year ~ and 3 Covid-linked deaths as the positivity rate 3,08,37,222 4,54,118 41,506 NEW DELHI, 11 JULY Prime Minister Narendra Modi today invited people to nominate citizens who are doing exceptional work at the grassroots level for the Padma awards. In a tweet, the PM said India has many talented people who are doing exceptional work at the grassroots but we don’t see or hear much of them. “India has many talented people, who are doing exceptional work at the grassroots. Often, we don’t see or hear much of them. Do you know such inspiring people?You can nominate them for the #PeoplesPadma. Nominations are open till 15th September. https://padmaawards.gov.in,” the PM tweeted. dra Tandon had met Afghan Defence Minister Bismillah Khan Mohammedi and indicated to him that India proposed to deal in view of the deteriorating security situation that has endangered the lives of its personnel. According to sources, the personnel who returned to Delhi on Saturday would be transported back if the situation improves, while some may alternatively travel to Kabul to continue their consular operations from the embassy, if required. The Indian embassy last week asked all Indians visiting, staying and working in Afghanistan to exercise the utmost caution with regard to their security and avoid all types of nonessential travel in view of rising incidents of violence in various parts of the country. In an advisory, the embassy said the security situation in Afghanistan remains “dangerous” and that terror groups have carried out a series of complex attacks including targeting civilians, adding Indian nationals additionally face a “serious threat” of kidnapping. Bomb technique indicates role of Pak army in drone attack on Jammu IAF base Security sources said that the ‘pressure fuse’ used is similar to the ones used by the Pakistani army JAMMU/NEW DELHI, 11 JULY 41,526 4,08,040 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. SUNDAY 11 JULY 2021 dropped further to 0.07 per (SEE P2) cent. People’s Padma: PM invites citizens to choose awardees STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE Indian’s Kandahar consulate In a tweet, the PM said India has many talented people who are doing exceptional work at the grassroots but we don’t see or hear much of them The nominations for the Padma awards 2022 are open till 15 September. The Padma Awards, namely, Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri, are some of the highest civilian honours of India announced annually on the eve of Republic Day and seek to recognise achievements in all fields of activities or disciplines where an element of public service is involved. Instituted in 1954, these awards are announced on the occasion of the Republic Day every year. The ‘pressure fuse’ used in the bombs that were dropped on the Indian Air Force station in Jammu through drones in a first-of-its-kind attack indicates that some elements of the Pakistan army or the ISI helped terror group Lashkare-Taiba in fabricating the IEDs, according to security sources. The improvised explosive device that pierced the rooftop of one of the IAF buildings at the airport carried less than one kg of RDX and a cocktail of other chemicals whereas the one that was dropped on the ground contained a little over one kg of the deadly explosives along with some ball bearings. The sources said the IED used in the 27 June attack on the IAF station “definitely” used the technical expertise of the Pakistani military. The ‘pressure fuse’ used is similar to the ones used by the Pakistani army. A ‘pressure fuse’ is generally used in minefields, anti-tank mines and those dropped by the air force in the fuselage between the explosive and main detonator of a shell or an IED. The explosive devices are activated by the pressure of either falling or external agent. However, in these sophisticated IEDs, the ‘pressure fuse’ had been deployed at the nose of the bombs so that they trigger with a force after falling on the ground, they said. PTI
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