SUNDAY www.thestatesman.com 14 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 HINDI IS A FRIEND TO ALL INDIGENOUS LANGUAGES: SHAH JUDGE DISSOLVES BRITNEY SPEARS’ CONSERVATORSHIP P5 P10 WEATHER Generally cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain.Temperature most likely to be in the range of 27-22 degrees Celsius. RAINFALL: 0.5 mm RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max. 91 % TEMPERATURE THUMBNAILS Vehicles stuck in traffic as tourists arrive in large numbers spend their vacation during the weekend, in North Goa on Saturday. ANI Sports awards: Olympic gold medallist Neeraj Chopra, Paralympics gold medallist Sumit Antil, and woman cricketer Mithali Raj along with nine other sportspersons were conferred the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award -the country's highest sporting honour -- at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Saturday, while an unprecedented 35 athletes were honoured (P12) with the Arjuna Award. Visas for Sikh pilgrims: The Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi has issued around 3000 visas to Indian Sikh pilgrims to participate in the 552nd Birth Anniversary celebrations of Baba Guru Nanak in Pakistan from 17-26 November. During their stay in Pakistan, the Sikh pilgrims would pay obeisance at different Gurdwaras, including Gurdwara Janam Asthan in Nankana Sahib and Gurdawara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur. Four jawans also killed in ambush; massive operations on to nab attackers he commanding officer of the 46th battalion of the para-military Assam Rifles, ColonelViplav Tripathi, died along with his wife and 9-year-old son today in an ambush by PLA insurgents today at Sehken village in Singhat Sub-Division of Manipur’s Churachandpur district. The ambush near the Indo-Myanmar border took place around 10 a.m. and three of the colonel’s escort detail and a driver were also killed on the spot. The officer’s convoy including a Quick Reaction Team was attacked with Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) at Sehken village, followed by heavy gunfire from ambush. T At least four Assam Rifles personnel were injured in the attack and ensuing firefight, and were later taken to the health centre at Behiang on the IndoMyanmar according to informed sources. Army, Assam Rifles and police forces led by senior police and para-military officials have launched a massive combing operation in the area to nab the militants. Strongly condemning Notwithstanding a substantial decrease in the new Covid19 cases, the daily death due to Covid-19 continued to remain on the higher side, reveals data provided by the Union Health Ministry. While 555 new deaths were reported during the past 24 hours, there were only 11,850 new cases reported during the same period. This week India reported approximately 58,650 new cases and 1,899 deaths due to the pandemic. According to the Union Health Ministry, India’s recovery rate stands at 98.26 per cent, which is the highest since March this year, and more than 12,403 patients recovered during the past 24 hours. The total recoveries have reached 3,38,26,483 since the out- the attack, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on social media, “I pay homage to those soldiers and family members who have been martyred today. Their sacrifice will never be forgotten. My thoughts are with the bereaved families in this hour of sadness.” “The cowardly attack on the Assam Rifles convoy in Churachandpur is extremely painful and condemnable. The nation has lost five brave soldiers including CO 46 AR and two family members. My condolences to the bereaved families. The perpetrators will be brought to justice soon,” said Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. Strongly condemning the attack, Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh said state and paramilitary forces are already on their job to track down the militants. “The perpetrators will be brought to justice,” he wrote on Twitter. A statement released on social media by the insurgent People’s Liberation Army said it and the Manipur Naga People’s Front had carried out the attack. The statement added that they were unaware of the presence of the family members of the deceased colonel in the convoy. (With agency inputs) Forces kill 26 Maoists in Gadchiroli INDO-ASIAN NEWS SERVICE NAGPUR, 13 NOVEMBER’ At least 26 Maoists were killed during a fierce encounter with Maharashtra Police in the deep forests near Dhanora in Gadchiroli district, Gadchiroli Superintendent of Police Ankit Goyal said. “Around 26 Naxals have been eliminated in the encounter at multiple locations by several security forces in the region. Three security personnel have also been injured in the cross-firing. They have been airlifted by helicopter to Nagpur and admitted for treatment at a local hospital," Goyal told IANS. The gun-battle which started in the early hours of Saturday in the dense forest of Kolgut-Dandat was continuing till evening with at least 26 fatalities notched among the Maoists, while three security personnel were also hurt, Goyal said. As per initial reports received at the Gadchiroli Daily Covid deaths on higher side NEW DELHI, 13 NOVEMBER P12 Delhi schools to stay AR colonel, wife & son dead in Manipur attack shut, no construction work to be permitted IMPHAL, 13 NOVEMBER Max: 27.3 °C(-3) Min: 23.3 °C(+3) SUN RISES SUN SETS 05:48 hrs 16:53 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS --:-- hrs 01:17 hrs Full moon on 19 November STATESMAN NEWS DELHI P7 STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE Min. 66 % DI MARIA STRIKE TAKES ARGENTINA TO VICTORY UNEASY LULL BEFORE THE STORM IN PAKISTAN? break of the pandemic, the Ministry said. The daily test positivity rate has also come down from 1.05 per cent, weekly positivity rate to 0.94 per cent. India's active caseload has also come down to 1,36,308, which is the lowest in 274 days India’s vaccination drive is also very encouraging with the administration of more than 123 crore doses of the vaccine. The top five states which have registered maximum cases in the previous 24 hours are Kerala with 6674 cases, Maharashtra 925 cases, West Bengal 860 cases, Tamil Nadu 812 cases and Mizoram 669 cases. More than 83.89 per cent of the new cases have been reported from these five states with Kerala alone responsible for 56.32 per cent of the new cases, the ministry data indicated. 3,44,26,036 1,36,308 11,850 12,403 4,63,245 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. SATURDAY 13 NOVEMBER 2021 Bengal cases:West Bengal today registered 872 fresh Covid cases and 13 deaths. Kolkata recorded 217 cases and 3 deaths in the last 24 hours. district headquarters, the encounter was with a Dalam of the banned CPI(Maoist) and commandos of the C60 unit. Now, a massive combing operation has also been undertaken to detect more bodies of the slain extremists with a possibility of the death toll likely to go up in this remote region on the Maharashtra-Chhattisgarh. Though the exact identity of the Maoists killed in Saturday's operations is yet to be established, there is speculation that a prominent leader of an outlawed organisation is among the slain. Goyal, however, declined to comment. Following a tip-off on Friday that some Maoists were expected to gather and plan out some activities in the region, the security forces launched search and combing operations. Soon, they came virtually face-toface with the extremists leading to the fierce jungle gun-battle which continued till Saturday evening. PM chairs meet on cryptocurrency ASIAN NEWS INTERNATIONAL NEW DELHI, 13 NOVEMBER Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday chaired a comprehensive meeting on the way forward for cryptocurrency and related issues in which it was decided that unregulated crypto cannot be allowed for money laundering and terror financing, according to government sources. The meeting was held after a consultative process done by the Reserve Bank of India, the Finance Ministry, and the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) in which global and Indian experts were consulted and global examples and best practices studied. According to sources the Government strongly feels that attempts to mislead the youth through over- promising and non-transparent advertising have to be stopped. It was also discussed that unregulated crypto markets cannot be allowed to become avenues for money laundering and terror financing. Sources said that the government is cognizant of the fact that this is an evolving technology hence it will keep a close watch and take proactive steps. There was consensus also that the steps taken in this field by the Government will be progressive and forward-looking. The government will continue to proactively engage with the experts and other stakeholders. Since the issue cuts across individual countries' borders, it was felt that it will also require global partnerships and collective strategies. STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 13 NOVEMBER Beginning from Monday, all schools in Delhi will remain closed for a week owing to air pollution in the national capital nearing an emergency level. However, the schools will continue to function in online mode. This was one of the four major decisions taken at an emergency meeting called by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. He said the school closure decision was essential to prevent children from inhaling polluted air. Kejriwal further announced, “All the offices of the Delhi government will operate in the work-from-home mode (WFH) for a week. An advisory will be issued for private offices too to go back to the WFH mode as much as possible."The third decision the Chief Minister announced was that construction activity will remain banned all over the city from 14 to 17 November. The government will soon present a proposal to the Supreme Court for a lockdown in the city in view of the alarming situation caused by severe air pollution. At this stage, the government is working on the proposal and will consult the Central government in this regard before taking it to the apex court, Kejriwal added. The Chief Minister had called an emergency meeting on Saturday evening on the issue after the Supreme Court asked for "some urgent measures" to effectively handle the severe air pollution crisis in the city. Declare lockdown if need be: Apex court A view of the national capital shrouded in smog, in the capital on Saturday. SUBRATA DUTTA INDO-ASIAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 13 NOVEMBER The Supreme Court on Saturday took a serious view of the severe air pollution in Delhi-NCR and suggested that if needed the government can declare a two-day lockdown to bring down the levels, which have been caused by stubble burning, vehicles, firecrackers, industries, dust. The top court emphasised that the air pollution issue should be looked into "beyond politics and governments". At the outset, a bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana told Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, that the "situation is very bad... In the house we are wearing masks. It is a bad situation". "How to control air pollution in Delhi, two days lockdown, if need be, or what. How will people live in Delhi?" queried the Chief Justice. He emphasised that the government should look at steps to bring down the AQI from 500 to 200, and then further improve it. Mehta began the argument by detailing steps taken by the air quality management commission to abate air pollution in NCR and adjoining areas, which included steps taken to address agricultural stubble burning. The bench, also comprising Justices D.Y. Chandrachud and Surya Kant said instead of blaming the farmers, all state governments and the Centre should come together to address the issue. Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai among world's top 10 polluted cities INDO-ASIAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 13 NOVEMBER Of the world's top 10 cities with the worst air quality, three ~ Delhi, Kolkata and Mumbai, are in India, data from air quality and pollution city tracking service from IQAir, a Switzerland-based climate group showed. While Delhi's Air Quality Index (AQI) at 556 made it to the top of the list, Kolkata and Mumbai recorded an AQI of 177 and 169, respectively, at fourth and sixth position, on the list. The cities with the worst AQI indices also include Lahore, in Pakistan, and Chengdu, in China. A real-time air quality information platform, IQAir is also a technology partner of the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP). As per System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR) data, Delhi's overall air quality on Saturday morning stood at 499, whereas the level of PM 10 and PM 2.5 pollutants in the air was recorded at 134 and 72, respectively. Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) data at 9 a.m. recorded an AQI of 468 at Anand Vihar, 484 at ITO, 433 at RK Puram and 452 at Sri Aurobindo's. An AQI between zero and 50 is considered 'good', 51 and 100 'satisfactory', 101 and 200 'moderate', 201 and 300 'poor', 301 and 400 'very poor', then 401 and between 500 is considered 'severe'. The Supreme Court on Saturday took a serious view of the severe air pollution in Delhi-NCR and suggested that if needed, the government can declare a two-day lockdown to bring down the levels. Climate talks resume, cautious coal phaseout still on table ASSOCIATED PRESS GLASGOW, 13 NOVEMBER UN talks to curb global warming ran into last-minute problems Saturday because of cold hard cash. Negotiators in Glasgow, Scotland, held last-minute huddles and pored over fresh proposals for sealing a deal that they hoped could be credibly said to advance worldwide efforts to tackle global warming. But funding issues - specifically, compensation for climate damages and credits in a trading system - caused the discussions to bog down. British officials chairing the talks released new draft agreements after shuttle diplomacy continued past an official Friday evening deadline. U.S. climate envoy John Kerry and his Chinese counterpart, Xie Zhenhua, both indicated cautious optimism late Friday that the negotiations were moving forward. During the buildup to the delayed session A climate activist holds a placard next to police officers near the venue for the COP26 U.N. Climate Summit in Glasgow, Scotland, on Friday. AP on Saturday afternoon, Kerry huddled with diplomats from Africa and other parts of the developing world. The last-minute negotiations focused on a potential loss-and-damage fund for poor nations hurt by climate change and forest credits in a carbon-trading market. “I hope we can have some resolutions before formally starting this plenary,” conference president Alok Sharma, an official from host nation Britain, told negotiators. “Collectively this is a package that really moves things forward for everyone.” Divisions remained on the issue of financial support sought by poor countries for the disastrous impacts of climate change they will increasingly suffer in the future. The United States and the European Union, two of the world’s biggest historic emitters of greenhouse gases, continued to have deep reservations about the so-called “loss and damage” provisions. Mohammed Quamrul Chowdhury of Bangladesh, a lead negotiator for lessdeveloped countries, ticked off the ways that vague wording in the latest draft fell short of committing wealthier countries to putting new money on the table for countries struggling with climate damage. “This package is very hard to explain for those already suffering the consequences at the front lines of the rising risks, or to anyone aware of the scientific evidence of what is coming our way unless we act faster,” said University of Twente climate scientist Maarten van Aalst, who is also director of the Climate Centre of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. Another issue causing problems Saturday has confounded negotiators for six years: setting up carbon-trading markets. The idea is to trade credits for reducing carbon like other commodities, unleashing the power of markets, with poorer nations getting money, often from private companies, for measures that reduce carbon in the air. One huge issue has been rich nations want to make sure that poor nations that sell their credits for making carbon reductions, which include carbonsucking forests, don’t include the same settings as reductions in their national emissions, called double counting. Saturday’s draft provided “strong” provisions to prevent double counting of offsets, but new issues involving forests reemerged later in the day, according to Environmental Defense Fund Vice President Kelly Kizzier, a for- mer European Union negotiator and expert on carbon market negotiations. Before the areas of disagreement between rich and poor nations demanded urgent attention, coal had garnered more consideration. A proposal for the overarching decision retains contentious language calling on countries to accelerate “efforts towards the phase-out of unabated coal power and inefficient fossil fuel subsidies.” But in a new addition, the text says nations will recognize “the need for support towards a just transition” — a reference to calls from those working in the fossil fuel industry for financial support as they wind down jobs and businesses. Some advocacy groups said the current proposals were not strong enough. “Here in Glasgow, the world’s poorest countries are in danger of being lost from view, but the next few hours can and must change the course we are on,” Oxfam senior policy adviser Tracy Carty said. “What’s on the table is still not good enough.” But the possibility of having fossil fuels explicitly mentioned for the first time in a decision coming out of the UN’s annual Conference of the Parties meeting, or COP was , well-received by some environmentalists. “It’s weaker and compromised, but we see it as a bridgehead, a bit of a breakthrough,” Greenpeace Executive Director Jennifer Morgan said. “We will have to fight like hell to keep it in there and have it strengthened in the coming hours,” Morgan said, adding that there were “a clutch of countries really seeking to strike that line from the deal.” In another proposal, countries are “encouraged” to submit new targets for emissions reduction for 2035 by 2025, and for 2040 by 2030, establishing a five-year cycle. Previously, developing countries were expected to do so only every 10 years. Developed countries are also being asked to submit a short-term update next year. The proposed agreement states that in order to achieve the 2015 Paris accord’s ambitious goal of capping global warming at 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 Fahrenheit) by the end of the century compared with pre-industrial times, countries will need to make “rapid, deep and sustained reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions, including reducing global carbon dioxide emissions by 45% by 2030 relative to the 2010 level and to net zero around mid-century, as well as deep reductions in other greenhouse gases.” Scientists say the world is not on track to meet that goal yet, but various pledges made before and during the two-week talks, which are now in overtime, have brought them closer.
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