CMYK FRIDAY www.thestatesman.com 01 OCTOBER 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 P10 WEATHER A few spells of light to moderate rain likely. Temper ature likely to be in the range of 33-26 degrees Celsius. RAINFALL: 4.6 mm RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max.98% P4 Min: 25.4 °C (N) SUN SETS 17:25 hrs MOON SETS 13:19 hrs October THUMBNAILS A monk stands on the banks of Pangong Tso Lake, in Leh on Thursday. ANI New Indian Air Force chief takes charge: Protecting India's sovereignty and integrity will be ensured at any cost, Air Chief Marshal Vivek Ram Chaudhari said on Thursday after taking charge as the Chief of the Indian Air Force. Chaudhari succeeds Air Chief Marshal R K S Bhadauria after the latter’s retirement. (P5) Sexual assault definition: The definition of the offence of sexual assault against children under the POCSO Act must be looked at from the “victim's perspective” and if the “sexual intent” is there then the offence is made out, the Supreme Court observed as it reserved its verdict on appeals filed against a Bombay High Court verdict that held that no offence of sexual assault is made out if there is no direct “skin-toskin contact between accused and victim. (P5) CSK qualify for playoffs: Chennai Super Kings put up a disciplined bowling performance to restrict Sunrisers Hyderabad to 134/7 in the IPL in Sharjah on Thursday. They struggled initially in their quest to get to the modest target but got there in the end to become the first team to make the playoffs. (Earlier report on Pg 12) P9 Quitting Cong, but won’t join BJP: Capt RANJEET JAMWAL NEW DELHI/CHANDIGARH, 30 SEPTEMBER ormer Punjab chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Thursday said he was not joining the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) but had no intention of continuing in the Congress, which he said was going downhill with senior leaders completely ignored and not given a voice. Denying any move to join the BJP, Amarinder said he would leave the Congress where he had been utterly humiliated and was not trusted. “I will resign. Will not stay in the party,” he said. “I will not be treated in this humiliating manner. I will not take such insults,” Amarinder said, adding that his principles and beliefs do not allow him to stay in the Congress. Returning to Chandigarh from New Delhi, Amarinder affirmed that he is quitting the Congress but not joining the BJP. F Congress is going downhill with senior leaders completely ignored and not given a voice CAPTAIN AMARINDER SINGH Amarinder Singh addresses a press meet in Mohali on Thursday. ANI Continuing his attack on Navjot Singh Sidhu, Amarinder said the cricketer-turned-politician is not the right man for Punjab. Asked if the Congress government should go for a floor test to prove its majority following his decision to quit the party, the former CM said it’s for the Assembly Speaker to see if a party has lost majority. Amarinder maintained that his meeting with Union home minister Amit Shah and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval in New Delhi were concerned with the issues of security in the border state where drones were being sent from Pakistan on a daily basis. Continuing his attack on Navjot Singh Sidhu, Amarinder said the cricketer- turned-politician is not the right man for Punjab. “I will not let him (Sidhu) win from wherever he contests Punjab Assembly polls,” he said. On Sidhu’s resignation as Punjab Congress chief over certain appointments by the Charanjit Singh Channi government, Amarinder said it’s the CM’s prerogative to appoint or remove an officer. “In my over nine years as CM, I have not seen such a situation created by Sidhu,” he added. Earlier, terming the senior Congressmen as thinkers, who were critical to the future of the party, the After Azad-Sibal demand, CWC meet ‘soon’ PRESS TRUST OF INDIA NEW DELHI, 30 SEPTEMBER The Congress Working Committee (CWC) will meet “very soon”, the party said on Thursday, a day after some senior leaders demanded such a meeting in the face of multiple desertions and turmoil in the organisation. Chief spokesperson of the Congress Randeep Sur- jewala said the party president had indicated last week that a meeting of the CWC, the top decision-making body of the party, would be called very soon. “Before leaving for Shimla, Congress president Sonia Gandhi had already indicated that a CWC meeting shall be called very soon. Accordingly, the CWC meeting shall be held in the coming days,” Surjewala said. On Wednesday, senior party leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad and Kapil Sibal, who are part of a group of 23 leaders seeking organisational revamp, demanded that a meeting of the CWC be convened immediately to discuss internal party issues such as a spate of defections from the party and turmoil in many state units including Punjab. Sibal had raised questions on the decision-making process in the party in the absence of a regular president, and demanded dialogue where all senior leaders would be heard. “In our party at the moment there is no president. So we don’t know who is taking these decisions. We know and yet we don’t know,” he said. 69 pc adults got one dose, 25 pc both STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE Sixty-nine per cent of the country’s adult population has received at least one dose of Covid-19 vaccine and 25 per cent has been administered both the doses, the government said on Thursday. It also said that increased population density raises chances of Covid spread and it will be prudent to avoid non-essential travel and observe festivity at low key. The ministry said 65,34,306 doses of vaccines against Covid19 were administered in the last 24 hours. This pushed the total number of inoculations done since the drive’s launch earlier this year to 88,34,70,578. Addressing a press conference, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said that 64.1 per cent doses of Covid vaccine There is a piece of good news for Durga puja revelers as they can enjoy the usual night-long pandal hopping this year. The West Bengal government today relaxed the Covid related night restrictions from 10 to 20 October in view of the festive season, even as the existing restrictions were extended till 30 October. Currently, the movement of people and vehicles is prohibited from 11 p.m. to 5a.m., except essential and emergency services. “However, in view of the ensuing festive period the said restriction related to movement of people and Assaulted IAF officer: Forced to withdraw complaint P12 CRUCIAL BYPOLL former CM said the younger leadership should be promoted to implement the plans, which the senior leaders are best equipped to formulate. Unfortunately, the seniors were being completely sidelined, he said, adding this was not good for the party. He also condemned the attack on Congress leader Kapil Sibal’s house by party workers only because he had chosen to express views that were not palatable to the party leadership. Misgovernance in Punjab would give Pakistan the opportunity to create trouble in the state and in the country, he said. Meanwhile, a nearly two-hour meeting between Punjab CM Charanjit Singh Channi and Sidhu in Chandigarh apparently broke the logjam over the latter's resignation from state Congress chief's post with the two leaders said to have reached consensus on some issues while others remain to be resolved. (More on Pg 5) Night curfew relaxed for festivities in Bengal KOLKATA, 30 SEPTEMBER RONALDO SCORES LATE WINNER FOR UNITED Amarinder vows to not let Sidhu win from wherever he contests in Punjab Min. 70% TEMPERATURE Max: 32.5 °C(-1) SUN RISES 5:28 hrs MOON RISES --:-- hrs New moon on 06 NORTH KOREA’S KIM SEEKS BETTER TIES WITH SOUTH BJP ASSURES BSY’S SOLO TOUR BECOMES PARTY AFFAIR JUDGE SUSPENDS SPEARS’S FATHER FROM CONSERVATORSHIP vehicles between 11 pm to 5 am is relaxed during 10 to 20 October,” read a notification issued by state chief secretary HK Dwivedi this evening. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had earlier said that the state government will offer some relaxations for the puja revelers so that they can enjoy pandal-hopping during the night. Barring the festive period, the night restriction will continue on all other days of the month. With Covid infections declining, the state government is yet to permit movement of local trains. West Bengal today registered 749 fresh Covid cases and 15 deaths. Kolkata recorded 149 cases and 3 deaths. PTI & SNS NEW DELHI, 30 SEPTEMBER has been administered in vaccination centres in rural areas and 35 per cent in urban areas. Bhushan also stressed that the number of Covid-19 tests that are done every day has not reduced and it is still between 15 to 16 lakh tests a day. Meanwhile, India witnessed yet another surge in daily Covid cases with about a 25 per cent rise in fresh cases on Thursday over last day’s figures, as fresh Covid-19 cases mounted to 23,529 after three days, according to Health Ministry’s data. India had reported less than 20,000 Covid-19 cases for the last three days. Thirty districts in the country, including 13 in Kerala, eight in Mizoram, four in Meghalaya, three each in Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh, two in Sikkim and one in Meghalaya are reporting a weekly positiv- 3,37,39,980 2,77,020 23,529 28,718 Mamata Banerjee arrives to cast her vote during Bhawanipore Assembly Constituency bypoll, where she is contesting to retain her post as the chief minister. At Mitra Institution in Kolkata. Voting has largely been peaceful in the seat with 53.32 per cent turnout (Report on Pg 3) reported till 5 p.m. BHASKAR MALLICK SC collegium approves 16 names for elevation as judges to four HCs STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 30 SEPTEMBER The Collegium headed by Chief Justice of India N V Ramana, approved the proposal for elevation of 16 names ~ six judicial officers and 10 advocates as judges of the high courts of Bombay, Gujarat, Orissa and Punjab and Haryana In a bid to fill up vacancies in the country’s higher judiciary, the Supreme Court Collegium recommended 16 names for elevation as judges of the high courts of Bombay, Gujarat, Orissa and Punjab and Haryana. In its meeting held on Wednesday, the Collegium headed by Chief Justice of India N V Ramana, approved the proposal for elevation of 16 names ~six judicial officers and 10 advocates as judges of these four high courts. The Collegium has approved the proposal for elevation of four judicial officers~A L Pansare, S C More, U S Joshi-Phalke and B P Deshpande~ as judges of the Bombay High Court, according to the statements uploaded on the apex court website on Thursday. The Collegium has recommended names of advocates Aditya Kumar Mohapatra and Mruganka Sekhar Sahoo and judicial officers Radha Krishna Pattanaik and Sashikanta Mishra for their elevation as judges of the Orissa High Court. For the Gujarat High Court, the Collegium has approved the proposal for elevation of seven advocates ~ Mauna Manish Bhatt, Samir J Dave, Hemant M Prachchhak, Sandeep N Bhatt, Aniruddha Pradyumna Mayee, Niral Rashmikant Mehta and Nisha Mahendrabhai Thakore ~as judges there. The Supreme Court Collegium in its meeting held on 29 September, has approved the proposal for elevation of Sandeep Moudgil, advocate, as judge in the Punjab and Haryana High Court. Besides the Chief Justice of India, the threemember Collegium which deals with the appointment in high courts includes Justices U U Lalit and A M Khanwilkar. Implement law to end farmers’ blockades, top court tells govt How can highways be blocked perpetually? Where does it end SUPREME COURT BENCH STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 30 SEPTEMBER The Supreme Court on Thursday pulled up the Centre and state governments over the continued road blockades and congestion caused by protests. Emphasising that roads cannot remain blocked perpetually, a bench headed by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul asked the Centre what steps has it taken to remove the road blockade by farmers, protesting against the three agriculture laws at Delhi borders. “We have already laid down the law and you have to implement it. If we encroach, then you may say that we have trespassed on your domain. How to implement the law is your business. The court has no means to implement it,” the bench told the Centre’s counsel: The top court said there are grievances, which need to be addressed and queried, “How can highways be blocked perpetually? Where does it end”. India blames China for E.Ladakh standoff 4,48,062 PRESS TRUST OF INDIA UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. THURSDAY 30 SEPTEMBER 2021 NEW DELHI, 30 SEPTEMBER ity rate of over 10 per cent, the health secretary said. Besides, 18 districts are reporting a weekly positivity rated between five and 10 per cent, Bhushan said. India hit out at China on Thursday for once again holding it responsible for the eastern Ladakh standoff, asserting that the “provocative” behaviour and “unilateral” attempts by the Chinese military to alter the status quo resulted in a serious disturbance of peace in the region. Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said China continues to deploy a large number of troops and armaments in the border areas and it was in response to Chinese actions that the Indian armed forces had to make appropriate counter deployments. India’s reaction came in response to China’s fresh allegation that the “root cause” of the tensions between the two countries was New Delhi. There should be one PG medical college in every district: PM Modi NITI releases report card on district hospitals PRESS TRUST OF INDIA Niti Aayog today released the first ever performance assessment report of district hospitals across the country documenting some of the best practices of the top performing hospitals across 10 indicators. A total of 707 district hospitals across all States and Union Territories participated in the performance assessment. The Health Management Information System (HMIS) data for 2017–18 was used as the baseline for this exercise. Overall, 75 district hospitals across 24 States and Union Territories emerged as top performers on indicators ranging from availability of beds, medical and paramedical staff, core health and diagnostic testing services to COIMBATORE, 30 SEPTEMBER JAIPUR, 30 SEPTEMBER A 28-year old female Air Force officer at the Air Force Administrative College here who was sexually assaulted, has levelled serious charges against the IAF authorities, including subjecting her to a banned two-finger finger test to ascertain rape, which was banned by Supreme Court, and also forcing her to withdraw the complaint against the accused Flight Lieutenant. Police had arrested the accused Amitesh Harmukh on 25 September. Both the rape victim and the accused, hailing from Chhattisgarh, were part of a training course and had attended a party in the officers’ mess on the night of PTI 9 September. The government is making efforts to ensure each district of the country has a medical college or an institution for post-graduate medical education, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday. He also said the gap in medical education and delivery of health services is being reduced and that the government's focus is on preventive healthcare as well as promoting ayurveda and yoga. In six years, more than 170 medical colleges have been completed and work on over 100 new medical colleges is going on at a fast pace, Modi said at a virtual ceremony to mark the foundation stone laying of four med- ical colleges and inauguration of the Institute of Petrochemicals Technology in Rajasthan. “The Centre is making efforts that there should be one medical college or institution for PG (post-graduate) medical education in every district,” he said. Talking about the erstwhile Medical Council of India (MCI), he said that questions used to be raised on its decisions and there were allegations on its transparency. These had an adverse STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 30 SEPTEMBER HEALTH REPORT The Niti Aayog report documents some of the best practices of the top performing hospitals across 10 indicators. A total of 707 district hospitals across all States and Union Territories partici- pated in the performance assessment. outputs such as bed occupancy rate and number of surgeries per surgeon. The report highlights some key issues faced by the health system and provides some sustainable solutions to strengthen the condition of the district hospitals, primarily involving improving data reporting in HMIS, suggesting such performance assessment exercises to bring about greater accountability for health care services in district hospitals. Niti Aayog Member Dr V K Paul in a Foreword to the report emphasized on the pivotal role of district hospitals “in creating healthier communities, providing a wide spectrum of healthcare services that caters to all individuals of the population.” He said despite their crucial role in providing advanced secondary care, there are unfortunately gaps, be it shortage of human resources, capacities, utilization and service uptake. To make impact on quality of medical education and delivery of health services, the prime minister said. He said after efforts and many challenges, the government was finally able to bring reform by forming the National Medical Commission in place of the MCI. The impact of the commission is now visible, Prime Minister Modi said. The Centre worked on a national approach and a new national policy to transform the health sector, Modi said. “Health is a state subject and I know what difficulties are there, because I was also a chief minister. The problem here was that the health system was divided and there was a lack connectivity and collective approach at the national level,” he said. CMYK “health for all” a reality and to ensure that every citizen has access to safe and reliable health services, these gaps must be closed. The report will mark a major shift in the healthcare delivery system towards datadriven governance and takes the system closer to communities and people availing health services. The entire objective of the exercise is to pave the way for a more informed understanding of healthcare services available in different regions. Niti Aayog has prepared the report in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and WHO India. The National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers, a constituent board of the Quality Council of India, conducted the on-ground data validation.
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