SUNDAY www.thestatesman.com 07 NOVEMBER 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 A FLAWED SYLLABUS IN THE MAKING HOUSE HANDS BIDEN INFRASTRUCTURE WIN P10 ALWAYS ASHWIN WARNER’S HALF-CENTURY HELPS OZ WIN P7 P6 P12 Mainly clear sky. Maximum and minimum temperature most likely to be around 30 °C and 19 °C respectively. BJP national executive meet 11 dead in Maha Covid hospital fire today; vax, UP polls on agenda RAINFALL: NIL RELATIVE HUMIDITY Thackeray orders probe; announces `5 L solatium to kin Max. 92 % INDO-ASIAN NEWS SERVICE WEATHER TEMPERATURE Min. 39 % AHMEDNAGAR, 6 NOVEMBER Max: 29.8 °C(-1) Min: 19.1 °C(-3) SUN RISES SUN SETS 05:44 hrs 16:57 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS 07:03 hrs 18:15 hrs Next moon quarter on 11 October t least 11 people, mostly Covid patients, were killed, and six other injured, some seriously, as fire swept through the ICU of Ahmednagar Civil Hospital on the auspicious ‘Bhai-Dooj’ day on Saturday, officials said. The massive blaze engulfed the hospital, creating a huge panic among patients and staffers, with thick black smoke emanating from the ward. At the time of the incident, there were at least 17 patients, the majority said to be senior citizens, undergoing Covid treatment in the ICU. “The fire broke out around 10 a.m. Of the 17 patients undergoing treatment in the ICU ward, 10 have died and the rest are injured,” District Collector Dr. Rajendra B. Bhosale told media persons earlier this afternoon. A THUMBNAILS A man walks on a snow-covered road in Gulmarg in Baramulla district of Kashmir on Saturday. IANS Search operation underway in J&K's Rajouri: A massive search operation was underway on Saturday in Jammu and Kashmir's Rajouri district where two terrorists are believed to be trapped, according to police sources. The sources said the security forces have closed vehicular traffic from Thanamandi to Rajouri in view of an ongoing operation in Khablan and other nearby villages of the district. The toll subsequently rose to 11, with another injured victim succumbing. As the flames quickly spread to different wards, the hospital authorities, aided by locals and rescue teams, managed to shift many patients to safer locations as a precaution, Bhosale added. He said the victims’ bodies have been sent for autopsy to determine the exact causes of their death and further procedures will be followed thereafter. A grim chief minister Uddhav Thackeray ordered a probe into the incident and has directed the district authorities to submit their preliminary report within a week. He also announced a compensation of Rs 5 lakh to the kin of each deceased~ a majority of whom were Covid19 patients. President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu, PM Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah, Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari, Leader of Opposition Devendra Fadnavis and others expressed grief over the tragedy, while Union Minister of State for Health Bharati P. Pawar visited Ahmednagar for a spot assessment. Ahmednagar Health Minister Rajesh Tope said a detailed probe has been ordered into the tragedy. Haryana govt notifies Act reserving 75 pc private jobs for locals: Haryana government on Saturday notified the Act implementing 75 per cent reservation in employment opportunities in the private sector for locals. The Haryana State Employment of Local Candidates Act, 2020 will come into effect from 2022. (P5) CRUCIAL MEET NEW DELHI, 6 NOVEMBER Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, BJP president JP Nadda are expected to take part in the meeting. Other top leaders and BJP state and senior party functionaries will attend the meeting virtually. The top leadership is expected to discuss the results of recent Assembly bypoll results, among other issues The BJP national executive meeting on Sunday to be held in ‘hybrid’ format is expected to discuss a wide range of issues including the government’s 100 crore milestone in Covid vaccination, and poll strategy for next year’s elections in five states mainly in Uttar Pradesh, among other matters. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, BJP president JP Nadda are likely to take part in the meeting. Other top leaders and BJP state and senior party functionaries will attend the meeting virtually. BJP national president JP Nadda will deliver the opening remarks, while Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to deliver the valedictory address. The top leadership is also expected to discuss the results of recently announced Assembly bypoll results. Particularly, the BJP’s poor showing and exodus of senior West Bengal leaders from Bjp and many central and state leaders joining the arch rival Trinamool Congress etc are also likely to Delhi govt bans 92 construction sites EMERGENCY MEASURES ASIAN NEWS INTERNATIONAL The order comes a day after Diwali following which the city’s Air Quality Index (AQI) turned “hazardous” NEW DELHI, 6 NOVEMBER Court sends Deshmukh to 14 days custody: Declining to accept the Enforcement Directorate's (ED) plea for further 9 days custody, holiday Special Court Judge P. R. Sitre on Saturday sent former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh, nabbed in a money-laundering case, to 14 days' judicial custody. (P5) STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE The Delhi government has banned 92 construction sites in the national capital for violating dust norms, said Environment Minister Gopal Rai on Saturday. This comes a day after Diwali following which the city’s Air Quality Index (AQI) turned “hazardous”. The Delhi Minister further informed that as an emergency measure, the government has also started spraying water on roads A worker sprinkle water to curb air pollution in the Capital. SUBRATA DUTTA with the help of anti-smog water tanks to reduce air pollution. “The Arvind Kejriwal government in Delhi had launched an action plan last month to tackle the air pollution, but on the day of Diwali, there was an increase in stubble burning in Punjab, Haryana, and some people in the national capital also brunt firecrackers because of which the pollution has increased,” stated Rai. “As an emergency measure, we have started spraying water on roads with the help of anti-smog water tanks to reduce air pollution. We have also banned 92 construction sites for violating norms,” he added. The environment minister further said that a total of 114 tankers are spraying water all over Delhi. “Punjab, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh are burning stubbles in the highest amount and if stubble burning increase in the neighbouring states, it affects Delhi,” he said. Rai added 3,500 incidents of stubble burning were reported on Friday. come up, it is learnt. However, the focus of the party’s top leadership is expected to be the Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh, where the party has already constituted regionwise teams to spearhead the party’s electoral game plan. The BJP is aware of the importance of its coming back to power in UP especially in the light of its larger strategy for the next Lok Sabha polls in 2024. The five states which will be going to the polls early 2022 are Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Goa and Manipur, Pubjab, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh. Of these, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Goa and FAREWELL Immersion of a Goddess Kali idol in the Hooghly near Babu Ghat in Kolkata on Saturday.SNS NIA in Canada to ‘liaise’ in pro-Khalistan cases NSAs of India, France discuss ASIAN NEWS INTERNATIONAL NEW DELHI, 6 NOVEMBER In a step towards tightening the noose against US-based group Sikhs for Justice (SFJ), a two-member National Investigation Agency (NIA) team is camping in Canada to “liaise with the authorities in connection with the pro-Khalistan cases” registered with the agency, said top sources. The NIA team, including an Inspector General rank officer, will be meeting with concerned authorities during its visit to Canada emphasing the execution of Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) requests and faster sharing of information with the NIA. Sources said that it is the NIA’s first visit to Canada in connection with the cases registered against SFJ, a proKhalistani group that supports the secession of Punjab from India as Khalistan. INDIA TIGHTENS NOOSE The deliberations would entail modes to execute Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) requests and faster sharing of information with the NIA NIA SOURCES Top sources said, “A twomember NIA team is in Canada to liaise with the authorities in connection with the proKhalistan cases registered with the agency”. “The deliberations would entail modes to execute MLAT requests and faster sharing of information with the NIA,” NIA sources said. From actors to singers and farm activists to journalists, NIA has issued summons over four dozen persons in connection with a case registered against the SFJ last year. It is NIA’s first visit to Canada in connection with the cases registered against Sikhs for Justice (SFJ), a proKhalistani group that supports the secession of Punjab from India as Khalistan On December 15 last year, the NIA registered a case in New Delhi under Section 120 B (Criminal Conspiracy), 124 A (Sedition), 153 A (Promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony), 153 B (Imputations, assertions prejudicial to national-integration) of Indian Penal Code and under sections of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. Incidentally, the case was registered around a fortnight after farm activists reached the Delhi border to lodge their protest against the farm acts. According to the FIR registered by the NIA, “Sikhs for Justice, an unlawful association under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and other Khalistani terrorist outfits including but not limited to Babbar Khalsa International, Khalistan Tiger Force and Khalistan Zindabad Force along with their frontal organisations, have entered into a conspiracy to create an atmosphere of fear and lawlessness and to cause disaffection in people and to incite them towards rising in rebellion against the government of India. In furtherance of the above conspiracy, huge funds are being collected abroad for on-ground campaign and propaganda against missions in countries like the USA, UK, Canada, Germany and so forth.” Indo-Pacific, Afghanistan STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 6 NOVEMBER At the 35th session of their strategic dialogue, India and France decided to strengthen maritime security in the Indo-Pacific region apart from discussing in detail the situation in Afghanistan following its takeover by the Taliban. French Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian on Friday held discussions with India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval at the strategic dialogue, which was held in Paris, a statement issued by the French embassy said here today. This was a follow up meeting after the talks between French President Emmanuel The French minister for Europe and foreign affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian said that the Indo-French partnership is working to strengthen multilateralism and defend a free and open Indo-Pacific based on the rule of law Macron and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on the sidelines of the G-20 in Rome. The French minister stressed on the commitment to deepening the Indo-French strategic partnership and strengthening its various aspects, particularly in the areas of defence, space, civil nuclear energy and security. “At his meeting with NSA Ajit Doval on the occasion of the 35th Strategic Dialogue in Paris, French FM @JY_LeDrian stressed France’s commitment to deepening the Indo-French strategic partnership in all its dimensions,” French ambassador to India Emmanuel Lenain tweeted. It is understood that Doval met French defence minister Florence Parly and Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian throughout a short journey to the French capital. The French foreign minister mentioned the priorities within the battle against local weather change, the French Embassy statement said. He also discussed the priorities in the fight against climate change with Doval. The French Minister called for continued Indo-French coordination, including at the UNSC, on Afghanistan. India logs 10,929 new Covid cases Climate march keeps up pressure on UN summit STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE ASSOCIATED PRESS NEW DELHI, 6 NOVEMBER India logged 10,929 Covid-19 cases in a day, 14.2 per cent lower than Friday's overall infections, according to the Union Health Ministry. With 392 fresh fatalities, the nationwide death toll mounted to 4,60,265. The recovery of 12,509 patients in the last 24 hours has increased the cumulative tally to 3,37,37,468. Presently, India’s recovery rate stands at 98.23 per cent, the highest since March 2020. The active caseload stands at 1,46,950 and the number of active cases presently constitute 0.43 per cent of the country’s total positive cases, the lowest since March 2020. Also in the same period, a total of 8,10,783 tests were conducted across the country. India has so far conducted over 61.39 crore cumulative tests. Meanwhile, the weekly positivity rate at 1.27 per cent has remained less than 2 per cent for the last 43 days now. The daily positivity rate stands at 1.35 per cent, which has also remained below 2 per cent for last 33 days and less than 3 per cent for 68 consecutive days now. With the administration of 20,75,942 vaccine doses in the last 24 hours, India’s Covid inoculation coverage has reached 107.92 crore as of Saturday morning. This has been achieved through 1,09,36,027 sessions. Bengal: West Bengal today registered 670 fresh Covid GLASGOW, 6 NOVEMBER 3,43,44,683 1,46,950 10,929 12,509 4,60,265 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. SATURDAY 06 NOVEMBER 2021 cases and 14 deaths with Kolkata recording 181 cases and 4 deaths. Cheering and marching to the beat of drums, tens of thousands of climate activists paraded Saturday through the streets of the Scottish city hosting the UN climate summit, demanding that governments step up actions to reduce the use of climatewarming fossil fuels that are damaging the planet. The mood in Glasgow was upbeat despite bursts of rain and the crowd was peaceful. Protesters condemned government leaders around the world for climate talks that activists say have so far failed to produce the fast action needed. Climate protests were also held in other cities across Europe, including Lon- RIGHT CAUSE Inside the more Tens of thousands of demonstrators marched through the rainy grey streets of Glasgow to demand leaders move faster to cut fossil fuels that are wrecking the climate don, Paris, Dublin, Copenhagen, Zurich and Istanbul. “We’re having these conversations, but there’s no policies to actually back them,” said Daze Aghaji, a marcher from London at the Glasgow demonstration, shouting over the steady beat of the drums. Marchers held signs with Manipur have BJP governments, while Punjab is the only Congress-ruled state. The party leaders are likely to brainstorm on its not so encouraging outcomes of bypolls in three Lok Sabha and 29 assembly seats across 13 states. The BJP won only one Lok Sabha seat, and lost the other two, including the Mandi parliamentary constituency in pollbound Himachal. The Congress on the other hand wrested Mandi and three assembly constituencies in Himachal Pradesh. The BJP executive are also expected to discuss the fallout of the bypoll results in West Bengal where TMC has done much better and won all four seats. In a setback in Karnataka, the BJP suffered defeat in Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai’s home district. Bjp however has won from all the five seats in Assam. BJP party leaders are also likely to laud the Central government over its handling of the Covid pandemic, including the nationwide vaccination drive, which has seen more than 1 billion doses administered. than half-mile-long conference venue, negotiators knuckled down for a seventh straight day of talks to finish draft agreements that can be passed to government ministers for political approval next week messages including “Code Red for Humanity,” “Stop big polluters,” “COP26, we are watching you” or simply “I’m angry.” As marchers neared the climate summit, a rainbow arched through the sky. “Overwhelmingly, the protests make a difference,” said Elizabeth May, a Cana- dian member of parliament and 16-time COP participant who was at the rally. “Most of the people on the inside are here in their hearts and sometimes physically.” Inside the huge U.N. conference venue, negotiators knuckled down for a seventh straight day of talks to finish draft agreements that can be passed to government ministers for political approval next week. Among the issues being haggled over at the talks by almost 200 countries are a fresh commitment to capping global warming at 1.5 degrees Celsius, getting countries to review their efforts more frequently to increase the pressure for deeper cuts, and providing more financial support for poor nations to adapt to climate change. New NCB team starts probe in Aryan Khan drug case NEW DELHI, 6 NOVEMBER The newly-constituted Special Investigation Team (SIT) led by Narcotics Control Bureau Deputy Director General Sanjay Singh on Saturday started probe in six drug cases including of Aryan Khan lodged with Mumbai Zonal office. Singh, a 1996 batch IPS officer, will take over the investigation of all six cases which were headed earlier by Zonal Director Sammer Wankhede including the sensational cruise ship party raid of October 2 in which Aryan Khan, son of Bollywood megastar Shah Rukh Khan, was arrested. On Friday, the NCB constituted an SIT headed by Singh to probe into these cases and removed Wankhede from the investigating team a week after the agency initiated probe into the alleged allegations of bribery and extortion against him. The NCB statement issued on Friday said that an SIT comprising officers from Operations Branch of NCB headquarters has been constituted by the Director General, NCB to take over a total of six cases from NCB Mumbai Zonal Unit which have national and international ramifications, in order to conduct deeper investigation to find out forward and backward linkages. The statement also said that no officer or officers have been removed from their present roles and they will continue to assist the Operations Branch investigation as required until any specific orders are issued to the conIANS trary. (See Pg 5)
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