MONDAY www.thestatesman.com 24 JANUARY 2022 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 12 |` 5.00|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR ... BEFORE NEXT BANG AMARINDER TO CONTEST FROM PATIALA URBAN SHAPOVALOV REACHES QUARTERS RUSSIA DENIES BID TO REPLACE UKRAINE LEADER P4 P6 P10 P12 PARTLY CLOUDY SKY. MODERATE FOG IN THE MORNING. COLD DAY CONDITIONS AT A FEW PLACES. THE MAXIMUM AND MINIMUM TEMPERATURES WOULD BE AROUND 16 AND 07 DEGREE CELSIUS RESPECTIVELY. Omicron in community Will build new India spread stage: Insacog before 100 years of RAINFALL: 19.7 mm RELATIVE HUMIDITY No evidence of rapid spread B.1.640.2 lineage, says consortium WEATHER Max: 100% Min: 78% Current wave could peak in 14 days: IIT-Madras TEMPERATURE Max: 14.9°C (-6) SUN RISES 07:13 hrs MOON RISES 23:56 hrs Min: 10.5°C (+3) SUN SETS 17:54 hrs MOON SETS 11:41 hrs STATESMAN NEW SERVICE NEW DELHI, 23 JANUARY THUMBNAILS A beneficiary receives a dose of the Covid-19 vaccine during a vaccination drive carried out by healthcare workers with the help of the Indian Army during heavy snowfall, in Baramulla on Sunday. ANI ASIAN NEWS INTERNATIONAL NEW DELHI, 23 JANUARY A man feeding grain to pigeons during the weekend curfew at Connaught Place in the capital on Sunday. SUBRATA DUTTA More CMs write to PM on IAS cadre rules: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin and his Kerala counterpart, Pinarayi Vijayan, have written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday requesting him to drop proposed amendments to the IAS (Cadre) Rules, 1954. West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee had previously written to the PM on the issue. (P5) Clean sweep by SA: South Africa held their nerve to edge out India in the 3rd and final ODI in Cape Town on Sunday. Chasing South Africa's score of 287 India were in control of the match till the 48th over. In the end India came up 4 runs short. (Earlier report on P12) German Navy chief: German naval chief, Vice Admiral Kay-Achim Schonbach has resigned over comments he made during his recent visit to India, when he had, among other things, dismissed the idea of Russia planning (P10) to invade the Ukraine as nonsense. Bhaskar Gupta passes away T he Omicron variant of Covid-19 is in the community transmission stage in India and it has also become dominant in multiple metros, where new cases have been rising exponentially, said Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG) in its weekly bulletin on Sunday. "Omicron is now in community transmission stage in India and has become dominant in multiple metros, where new cases have been rising exponentially. BA.2 lineage is in a substantial fraction in India and S gene dropout based screening is thus likely to give high false negatives," it said. According to the report RT-PCR screening applicable to all Omicron lineages, “Tests suitable for PCR based screening applicable to all Omicron lineages have been approved for use.” “While most Omicron cases so far have been asymptomatic or mild, hospitalizations and ICU cases have been increasing in the current wave. The threat level remains unchanged,” it said. “The recently reported B.1.640.2 lineage is being monitored. There is no evidence of rapid spread and while it has features of immune escape, it is currently not a variant of concern. So far, no case detected in India," INSACOG added. INSACOG further said, "Omicron wave continues to expand globally, with new highs being established for daily infections. The rate of hospitalization during this wave is much lower compared to the previous wave with Delta, attributable to both intrinsically reduced severity with lesser propensity to cause pneumonia, and higher population immunity. However, due to the very high number of cases, the absolute number of hospitalizations has crossed previous highs in many countries and is creating stress on healthcare systems. While deaths have been much lower during India on Saturday reported more than 3,33,533 new Covid cases while its active case count increased to 21.87 lakhs, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare data updated on Sunday. The daily Covid test positivity rate continues to increase and on Saturday it was at 17.78 per cent and the recovery rate plunged to 93.18, which was over 98 per cent till the beginning of January. The death toll due to Covid has increased to 4.89 lakh, of which 525 people died during the past 24 hours. A study conducted by Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras, meanwhile, indicated that the existing Omicron-driven wave of the Covid-19 pandemic in the country is likely to reach its peak in the next 14 days, by February 6. The result is based on the institute's analysis of the national ‘R-value,' which, it said, declined further in the week of 14-21 January. ‘R-value’ is the number of people who can contract a virus from a person who is already infected with it. According to the study conducted by IIT Madras, this value was recorded at 1.57 in the latest round, as against 2.2 from January 7-13, while from January 1-6 it stood at 4 and was at 2.9 from December 2531 last year. For individual cities, the R-value stood at 0.56 for Kolkata, 0.67 for Mumbai, 0.98 in Delhi and 1.2 in Chennai, the data showed, indicating that in Kolkata and Mumbai at least, the wave has already peaked. the new wave, compared to previous waves, there have been Omicron-associated deaths. In data so far, the majority of severe cases and deaths have been in unvaccinated subjects, with high protection associated with vaccination or previous infection." 3,92,37,264 21,87,205 3,33,533 2,59,168 4,89,409 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. SUNDAY 23 JANUARY 2022 DELHI RECORDED 9,197 FRESH COVID CASES AND 34 DEATHS ON SUNDAY SOMA MOOKHERJEE KOLKATA, 23 JANUARY KOLKATA, 23 JANUARY West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, while observing Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose’s 125 birth anniversary on Red Road lashed out at the Centre for dissolving the National Planning Commission, dousing Amar Jawan Jyoti at India Gate and trying to change the history of Indian and Bengal Freedom Movement. While offering homage to Netaji Subhas, Miss Banerjee said: “A national hero and national and global icon, Netaji’s rise from Bengal is unmatched in the annals of Indian history. He is an epitome of patriotism, courage, leadership, unity and brotherhood.” Miss Banerjee said that the state will observe the 125 birth anniversary of Netaji Bhaskar Prasad Gupta, Barrister and Senior Advocate, passed away last evening at a city nursing home following illness and complications arising from a Covid infection. He was 81 and is survived by his two sons, Rajdeep, an investment banker in London, and Subhadeep, a physicist based in the USA. He was cremated this evening at Nimtola Ghat. After graduating from St Xavier’s College, Calcutta with first class honours in Mathematics, Bhaskar Gupta obtained an LLB degree from University College, London and was called to the Bar by the Lincoln’s Inn. Miss Banerjee said that drawing inspiration from Netaji’s thoughts on National Planning Commission, a Bengal Planning Commission will be set up to help the state in its planning initiatives. and 75 years of Independence in a befitting manner from 23 January to 30 January and from 15 August to 21August. The statues of freedom fighters will be illuminated. “We earlier planned to hold a rally today but had to cancel it due to the pandemic,” she said. “Among some long-term initiatives to commemorate Netaji, a National University with international collaborations, Jai Hind University, is IAS officer embarrasses Chhattisgarh govt, appoints spouse in project he heads RAIPUR, 23 JANUARY Call it pretty sister syndrome or more indigenously ‘Bhabhi-syndrome’, an IAS officer landed Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel in an embarrassing situation when he appointed his own spouse and the wife of a fellow bureaucrat in a World Bank-funded agricultural project. The controversy triggered outrage, prompting the government to go into fire-fighting mode and direct both the ladies to put in their papers. Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, who is already faced with a series of governance and political problems, was caught STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 23 JANUARY Prime Minister Narendra Modi after unveiling a hologram statue of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose at India Gate on Sunday evening, said that the government has a target to build a new India before the 100th year of independence. “Netaji used to say, 'Never lose faith in the dream of independent India. There is no power in the world that can shake India’,” PM Modi said while addressing the event today. Netaji’s statue is being installed in digital form as a place-holder until a granite statue of the iconic leader is completed and installed in its place. “It is unfortunate that after Independence, along with the culture and traditions of the country, the contribution of many great personalities was also tried to be erased,” PM Modi said. “The freedom struggle involved ‘tapasya’ of lakhs of countrymen, but attempts were made to confine their history as well. But today the country is boldly correcting those mistakes,” he added. This hologram would be in place till the work of the statue of Netaji is completed. The statue would be unveiled in the same place to mark the year-long celebration of the 125th birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, a PMO note stated. The Prime Minister cited Panch Teerth associated with Babasaheb Ambe- Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiling a hologram statue of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose at India Gate, in New Delhi. Union Home Minister Amit Shah is also seen. ANI dakar, Statue of Unity to commemorate the contribution of Sardar Patel, Janjatiya Gaurav Diwas in the honour of Bhagawan Birsa Munda, Tribal Museums to remember the great contribution of the tribal community, naming an Island in Andamans after NetaJi to comommerate 75 years of tricolour in Anamans and Sankalp Smarak in Andamans to honour Netaji and INA, as some key steps in the direction of correcting the mistakes of the past. The Prime Minister recalled with emotion his visit to Netaji's ancestral residence in Kolkata on the Parakram Diwas last year. The Prime Minister said if Netaji Subhas was deter- mined to do something, then no power could stop him.We have to move ahead taking inspiration from Netaji Subhas\s 'Can Do,Will Do' spirit. The Prime Minister also conferred Subhas Chandra Bose Aapda Prabandhan Puraskars awards on the occasion. He conferred Subhas Chandra Bose Aapda Prabandhan awards for the year 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022 in the investiture ceremony. The award has been instituted to recognize and honour the contributions and service rendered by individuals and organisations in the field of disaster management, the PMO said. Govt at Centre has destroyed Netaji Subhas’s legacy: Mamata STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE Independence: Modi Special secretary Bharati Dasan had appointed his wife and another IAS officer’s spouse as Project Manager and Assistant Project Manager, respectively, in the Chhattisgarh Inclusive Rural and Accelerated Agriculture Growth Project. unawares when the news of his special secretary Bharati Dasan appointing his wife Menaka M Bharati Dasan and fellow IAS officer Himshikar Gupta’s wife Neha Gupta as Project Manager and Assistant Project Manager, respectively, in the Chhattisgarh Inclusive Rural and Accelerated Agriculture Growth Project. Dasan, special secretary for Agriculture and Nodal officer for CM Baghel’s flagship Narva, Ghurva, Baari projects, got his wife appointed as Project Manager with a monthly remuneration of Rs. 1 Lakh. While Neha Gupta, wife of 2007 batch IAS officer Himshikhar Gupta was appointed as assistant project manager for a monthly package of Rs. 80,000. Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) spokesperson and human rights lawyer Priyanka Shukla raised the issue onTwitter. “Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel’s secretary Bharati Dasan appointed his wife for a job with one lakh pay and his colleague Himshikhar Gupta’s wife against the monthly payment of Rs. 80,000. And in this way eradicated unemployment in the state”, she tweeted. The news soon went viral on social media prompting the chief minister to express his displeasure. “The inherent message in these postings has not gone down well in the public, even if all the ladies appointed, hold requisite qualification”, a local daily quoted one of his close aides as saying. Observers, however, were far less than surprised over the fiasco and claimed it has been the practice among all India cadre officers and a handful of journalists for a long time. A former Raipur Municipal Commissioner’s wife, for instance, was given a position with the Public Relations Department whereas the wife of a Public Relations official was posted in Raipur Municipal Corporation. Positions of guest lecturer/ ad-hoc faculty, consultant, in government universities and colleges, Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya, KendriyaVidyalaya, and Army schools are often occupied by the spouses of all India cadre and military officers. Spouses and siblings of higher officials and politicians with legal qualifications often fill the positions of attorneys for government departments. being set up with 100% state funding,” she declared. She said: “We will set up Jai Hind Bahini in schools and colleges and will ensure that chapters of National Freedom Movement and Bengal Freedom Movement are taught in schools and colleges." She said her government will bring out booklets on women freedom fighters. “Drawing inspiration from Netaji’s thoughts on National Planning Commission, a Bengal Planning Commission will be set up to help the state in its planning initiatives,” she said. She slammed the present government at the Centre and said: “This government at Centre after coming to power replaced National Planning Commission with Niti Aayog. I strongly condemn the move. “We again appeal to the Central government that Netaji’s birthday be declared a National Holiday to allow the entire nation to pay homage to the National Leader and celebrate Desh Nayak Dibas in the most befitting manner," Miss Banerjee said. She said Netaji is the face of Indian Freedom Movement. “In those days we did not have UNO, UNESCO, WHO but it was Netaji's freedom movement which was known to the world, " she said. She again lashed out at the Centre for dousing Amar Jawan Jyoti to set up Netaji's statue. She said setting up a statue is not enough." You have to follow his principles of universal brotherhood.” “You will write the date of birth but what about his date of passing away,” Miss Baner- jee asked. "Till date we don’t know how Netaji died. Centre had made tall promises to resolve the mystery. But failed. We inWest Bengal have declassified all the files related to Netaji and digitised it. It is displayed in Police Museum of Kolkata Police. “Why is Bengal ignored so much? I challenge, no one can erase Bengal’s history. No one erase the nation’s history. Those who dare to do so are playing with fire,” she She said in the 75th year of Independence the Centre can’t still say how Netaji died? “You build the statue under our pressure. Come see Netaji’s statue here in Kolkata, it’s alive 365 days. It’s not artificial” she added, referring to the hologram statue of Netaji unveiled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi today at India Gate. PATRIOTIC UNDERTAKING Indian Air Force choppers fly during the full dress rehearsal of the Republic Day Parade 2022, at Rajpath, in the capital on Sunday. SUBRATA DUTTA
The Statesman is one of India's oldest English newspapers. It was founded in Kolkata in 1875 and is directly descended from The Friend of India (founded 1818). The Englishman (founded 1821) was merged with The Statesman in 1934. The Delhi edition of The Statesman began publication in 1931. The Statesman Weekly is a compendium of news and views from the Kolkata and Delhi editions. Printed on airmail paper, it is popular with readers outside India. The Statesman (average weekday circulation approximately 180,000) is a leading English newspaper in West Bengal. The Sunday Statesman has a circulation of 230,000.