CMYK WEDNESDAY www.thestatesman.com 17 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 MYANMAR POLL BODY CHARGES SUU KYI WITH ELECTORAL FRAUD ‘SCANDAL MUST STOP’ P6 WEATHER Humid and discomfort weather is very likely. Temperature likely to be in the range of 29-20 degrees Celsius. RECORD FDI FLOW LIKELY TO CONTINUE: GOYAL P9 P8 India’s Covid inoculation coverage has reached 112.97 crore Max.93% STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI/KOLKATA, 16 NOVEMBER Min. 52% Max: 29°C (-1) Min: 21.2°C (+1) SUN RISES SUN SETS 05:51 hrs 16:52 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS 15:43 hrs 03:53 hrs Full moon on 19 November THUMBNAILS DYFI members protest against alleged attacks on minorities and Left wing activists and demand repeal of UAPA, at Jantar Mantar, in the Capital on Tuesday. SNS Sushant Singh's five relatives killed in road mishap: Six persons, including five distant relatives of late Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput, were killed when their SUV collided with a truck in Bihar's Lakhisarai district on Tuesday morning, police said. The victims have been identified as Laljeet Singh (deceased woman's husband), Nemani Singh, Amit Shankar alias Ram Chandra Singh, Sunita Devi, Anita Devi and driver Chetan Kumar. Hyd girl scales Mt Kilimanjaro: A 13-year-old girl from Hyderabad, Muriki Pulakita Hasvi, recently scaled Mt Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa. "It was an adventurous experience, Mt Kilimanjaro is such a mountain where you experience all weather conditions," she said. P12 New cases lowest in PM Modi opens UP e-way, attacks ‘previous govt’ 287 days, 197 deaths RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY TEMPERATURE ‘WORKLOAD MANAGEMENT IS IMPORTANT’ ndia registered 8,865 new Covid-19 cases In the last 24 hours, marking the lowest single-day infection spike in the last 287 days, the Union health ministry said on Tuesday. The cumulative death toll currently stood at 4,63,852 after 197 more people succumbed to the virus, according to the ministry. The recovery of 11,971 patients in the last 24 hours has increased the cumulative tally to 3,38,61,756. Consequently, India’s recovery rate stands at 98.27 per cent, the highest since March 2020. The active caseload stands at 1,30,793, the lowest in 525 days. Active cases presently account for 0.38 per cent of the country’s total positive cases, the lowest since March 2020. Also in the same period, a total of 11,07,617 tests were conducted across the country, increasing the cumulative total to 62.57 crore. Meanwhile, the weekly positivity rate at 0.97 per cent has remained less than 2 per cent for the last 53 days now. The daily positivity rate at 0.80 per cent has also remained below 2 per I 3,44,56,401 1,30,793 8,865 11,971 4,63,852 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. TUESDAY 16 NOVEMBER 2021 cent for last the 43 days and less than 3 per cent for 78 consecutive days. With the administration of 59,75,469 vaccine doses in the last 24 hours, India’s Covid inoculation coverage has reached 112.97 crore as of Tuesday morning. Bengal: West Bengal today registered 819 fresh Covid cases and 14 deaths. Kolkata recorded 231 cases and 4 deaths while North 24 Parganas recorded 129 cases and 5 deaths in the last 24 hours. 95 nations likely to receive Pfizer pill INDO-ASIAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 16 NOVEMBER Pfizer Inc and the Medicines Patent Pool (MPP), a United Nations-backed public health organisation has announced entering a voluntary license agreement for Pfizer’s Covid-19 oral antiviral treatment candidate which is administered in combination with low dose ritonavir. Under the terms of the head license agreement, qualified generic medicine manufacturers which have been granted sub-licenses will be able to supply PF07321332 in combination with ritonavir to 95 countries reaching an estimated 53 per cent of the global population. The beneficiaries include all low-and lowermiddle-income countries and some uppermiddle-income countries in Sub-Saharan Africa as well as countries that have transitioned from lower-middle to upper-middle-income status in the past five years. Pfizer will not receive royalties on sales in low- income countries and will further waive royalties on sales in all countries covered by the agreement while Covid-19 remains classified as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern by the World Health Organization. “We believe oral antiviral treatments can play a vital role in reducing the severity of Covid19 infections, decreasing the strain on our healthcare systems and saving lives,” said Albert Bourla, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Pfizer. “We must work to ensure that all people - regardless of where they live or their circumstances - have access to these breakthroughs, and we are pleased to be able to work with MPP to further our commitment to equity.” “This license is so important because, if authorized, this oral drug is particularly well-suited for low-and middle-income countries and could play a critical role in saving lives, contributing to global efforts to fight the current pandemic,” said Charles Gore, Executive Director, MPP . SNS/AGENCIES SULTANPUR, 16 NOVEMBER Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Tuesday, inaugurated the 341-km long Purvanchal Expressway and termed it as the “pathway to development of new UP”. He also slammed previous governments for lack of development and lauded the development push given by chief minister Yogi Adityanath. Speaking on the occasion, Modi said that anyone who has any doubts about the capabilities of UP and its people should come to Sultanpur today to witness their capability. “Three years ago, when I laid the foundation stone of this expressway, there was just plain land here and today, we have this modern expressway where I have landed in an aircraft,” he said He said that the expressway, besides adding a new chapter to connectivity, would give an impetus to industrial development and strengthen the economic backbone of the state. The PM said that the country’s security was as important as its prosperity. He landed in a C-130 Hercules plane on the airstrip constructed on the Expressway. “The Purvanchal Expressway has now become one more power for the Indian Air Force in cases of emergency. Our fighter planes can land on the expressway,” he said. The PM also mounted a blistering attack on the “previous government” (SP government) without taking names. “The politics done in UP , the manner in which govts were run for a long time - they did not pay attention to the all-round and holistic development. One region of UP and its people were given away to the mafia and poverty. For previous chief ministers, development was limited to their families and where they had their homes. Previous UP government only cared about their family wealth,” he said. “I was anguished to know that the previous government did not cooperate with us. Their leaders were even hesitant to stand with me. They would welcome me at the airport and then vanish for fear of their vote bank,” he said. He said that for years, the partnership of dynastic families crushed UP’s aspirations and did not develop defence infrastructure. Continuing his attack on previous government, Modi said that earlier there were no roads but people of UP were looted on highways. “Seeing the situation in UP , 7-8 years ago, I used to wonder what some people are punishing UP for. In 2014, when UP gave me the opportunity to serve the great land Modi, Mamata meeting next week? Centre doesn’t control CBI, no role in registering cases, AG tells SC INDO-ASIAN NEWS SERVICE KOLKATA, 16 NOVEMBER West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee is likely to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi by the middle of next week, official sources said. Miss Banerjee might embark on her Delhi visit on 22 November and is likely to return on 25 November and during this period, official sources said, she is likely to meet the PM. Chief minister’s office sources indicate that the meeting might revolve around the pending funds from the Centre and the recent extension of the operation area of BSF from 15 km to 50 km. Miss Banerjee is also likely to meet the leaders of the opposition, including Congress chief Sonia Gandhi. Miss Banerjee has writ- BSF jurisdiction: Bengal Assembly passes resolution STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE KOLKATA, 16 NOVEMBER ten to Modi protesting against the Centre’s decision to extend BSF jurisdiction and the West Bengal Assembly today passed a resolution against the move. Senior TMC MP Sougata Roy said that the party will raise the issue in the winter session of Parliament. So, this will almost inadvertently come up during the meeting. Miss Banerjee had previously apprised the PM regarding the pending finances from INDO-ASIAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 16 NOVEMBER Attorney General K.K. Venugopal told the Supreme Court on Tuesday that the CBI is a statutorily maintained body and the Centre cannot interfere with it regarding the manner of its investigation. The AG, representing the Centre, argued before a bench headed by L. Nageswara Rao that the original suit filed by the West Bengal government against CBI registering cases in the state, despite the state government revoking its general consent, was not maintainable. He added that the Centre has nothing to do with the registration of criminal cases under the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act or under CBI raids 77 locations in crackdown on online sexual abuse, child pornography STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 16 NOVEMBER West Bengal today became the second state after Punjab to pass a resolution amid ruckus by 112-63 against Centre’s decision to extend BSF’s operational jurisdiction from 15 km to 50 km from the International border. State parliamentary affairs minister Partha Chatterjee said the Centre’s decision was virtually an attack on the country’s federal structure. Leader of Opposition Suvendu Adhikari while delivering his address in the House claimed that his party would urge the Centre to extend the jurisdiction of the BSF to 80 km instead in the state to arrest the rapid growth in cattle-smuggling, drug peddling and other illegal activities as tempers soared in the House. See pg 3 the Centre and Bengal’s minister of state for finance Chandrima Bhattacharya raised the issue during a meeting with Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday. The Bengal government claims that Centre has been amplifying its income through cess imposed on the state and denying the state their share. The state’s demand was that the the authority to take a loan of 5 per cent of the GDP by the Centre was accepted at only 3.5 per cent. The state has been alleging of being deprived of the central funds for the centrestate run projects and also withholding funds for disaster-affected people. These issues are likely to be salient during the discussion. In July after coming to power for the third time Miss Banerjee went to Delhi and met several leaders, including Sonia Gandhi but things have changed in these few months. She and Abhishek Banerjee have repeatedly attacked the Congress for their inability to lead the opposition against BJP . With the TMC trying to spread its organisation to smaller states like Goa and Tripura, the perspective of TMC and Miss Banerjee have changed in the last five months. In a nationwide coordinated crackdown on crime related to online child sexual abuse material, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) today conducted searches in 77 cities and towns across the country and registered 23 separate cases against 83 persons. The CBI found that various syndicates of individuals based in different parts of India and foreign countries were indulging in circulating, storing and viewing Child Sexual Exploitation Material (CSEM) through various social media platforms and groups. The offenders were disseminating CSEM by way of sharing links, videos, pictures, texts, posts and hosting of such content on social media groups and platforms and third party storage and hosting platforms. As per initial information collected, the CBI estimates there are more than 50 groups comprising more than 5000 offenders sharing child sexual abuse material in the country. Many of the groups had involvement of foreign nationals. The CBI estimated that there could be involvement of nationals of around 100 countries spread across various continents. CBI is coordinating with sister agencies through formal and informal channels. Searches and development of further leads is underway. Investigations are still on. Following reports of the crime, the CBI had constituted a Special Unit “Online Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Prevention/Investigation (OCSAE)” for matters per- taining to online child sexual abuse and exploitation. As Interpol’s India component, CBI is uniquely placed to coordinate such matters having national and international ramifications. Globally, the importance of recognizing and combating online child sexual abuse has been acknowledged. Every year, a lot of children face abuse which becomes more horrific when online platforms are used. It is a challenge for all stakeholders including law enforcement agencies, CBI said. The cooperation amongst law enforcement agencies is paramount for tackling this menace. Apart from coordination with various agencies, the unit is undertaking investigation of various offences relating to online child sexual abuse and exploitation. The searches were conducted today at homes of the offenders at Delhi, Jaipur, Tirupati, Kanekal (Andhra Pradesh); Varanasi, Patna, Chandauli, Ghazipur, Siddharthanagar, Moradabad, Noida, Jhansi, Ghaziabad, Muzaffarnagar (Uttar Pradesh); Junagarh, Bhavnagar, Jamnagar (Gujarat); Sangrur, Patiala and Gwalior. The other towns were Malerkotla, Hoshiarpur, Siwan (Bihar); Yamuna Nagar, Panipat, Sirsa, Hisar (Haryana); Bhadrak, Jajapur, Dhenkanal (Odisha);, Coimbatore, Ajmer, Jhunjhunu, Nagaur (Rajasthan); Jalgaon, Korba (Chhattisgarh) and Solan (Himachal Pradesh). A number of electronic gadgets, mobiles, laptops etc. have so far been recovered during searches. Some individuals were involved in trading of CSEM material. See pg 5 CMYK Section 6 of the Act. The AG insisted that a suit cannot be filed where the CBI is not the party, but the Centre is a party. He emphasised that the Centre has no control over the CBI in matters relating to the registration of FIRs, adding that the CBI is an autonomous body. The West Bengal government has moved the top court against a Calcutta High Court order directing the CBI to probe the cases of murder and crimes against women during the post-poll violence. Senior advocate Siddharth Luthra, representing the Bengal government, contended before the bench that the state government’s suit should be allowed, adding that the other side has made a complete mockery of the rules. The state government had sought directions to declare the registration of cases by the defendant after withdrawal of general consent for CBI investigation as unconstitutional. The AG submitted that the Centre had neither registered a single case, nor it had the jurisdiction to register a case. The Bengal government, in its original civil suit under Article 131 of the Constitution, contended that the CBI has been proceeding with investigations and filing FIRs without its approval, as mandated under the statute. The AG added that the Central Vigilance Commission has been given power to exercise superintendence over CBI in relation to investigation of offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act. SAFETY DRILL National Disaster Management Authority volunteers during a mock drill at Constitution Club, in the Capital on Tuesday. SNS Purvanchal Express will be lifeline of development in eastern UP: Yogi Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath on Tuesday said that Purvanchal Express will become the lifeline of development in eastern Uttar Pradesh. “Work is underway to connect Bundelkhand with a new expressway. The work of Ganga Expressway is going to start to connect Western Uttar Pradesh with Eastern Uttar Pradesh. By next month the metro system of Kanpur will also open. In five years, a new Metro facility was provided under the guidance of PM and transport facilities have been also upgraded in the ANI state.” of India, I started many developmental works for the development of UP he said. ,” Modi lauded Adityanath for major push to development on the lines of “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas”. Later, a scintillating air show was held at the venue, displaying the air power of the IAF. (Photo: ANI) Kartarpur Sahib Corridor reopens today STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 16 NOVEMBER The Centre has decided to resume operations of the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor from tomorrow keeping in view the improved pandemic situation, the ministry of home affairs said today. The operations at the Corridor were suspended on 16 March, 2020 due to the pandemic. Showing sensitivity towards the Sikh community’s sentiments, the government’s decision to resume the Corridor operations will benefit many Sikh pilgrims. The decision has come after a series of review meetings by Union home minister Amit Shah with officials to expedite resumption of the operation of the Corridor at an opportune time. Pilgrimage through the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor will be facilitated as per existing procedures and adherence to Covid norms, MHA said. India had signed an Agreement with Pakistan on 24 October 2019 on the modalities for operationalization of the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor at Zero Point, International Boundary, Dera Baba Nanak. Representatives from the ministries of external affairs, defence, and home along with representatives of the Punjab government were present during the signing ceremony. The Modi-led Cabinet had passed a resolution on 22 November 2018 to celebrate the 550th Birth Anniversary of Sri Guru Nanak Devji in a grand and befitting manner. In a landmark decision, the Cabinet had also approved the building and development of Kartarpur Sahib Corridor from Dera Baba Nanak to the International Boundary, to facilitate pilgrims from India to visit Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur. See pg 5
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