TUESDAY www.thestatesman.com 15 NOVEMBER 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 P4 WEATHER MAINLY CLEAR SKY. MIST IN THE MORNING. THE MAXIMUM AND MINIMUM TEMPERATURES WOULD BE AROUND 30 AND 14 DEGREES CELSIUS RESPECTIVELY. RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max: 91% P5 ATP FINALS: NADAL SUFFERS DEFEAT AGAINST FRITZ P8 P12 Biden meets Xi for the first time after taking charge G20 Summit: PM Modi to address global challenges Modi said he would hold bilateral meetings with leaders of several other participating countries Min: 34% STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE TEMPERATURE Max: 31.2°C (+3) SUN RISES 06:44 hrs MOON RISES 23:06 hrs YOGI GOVT TO INVEST `5,000 CR IN UP ‘WILL WORK ON FOOTPRINTS OF NETAJI’ STALIN VISITS RAIN-AFFECTED AREAS IN TAMIL NADU Min: 14.1°C (+1) SUN SETS 17:28 hrs MOON SETS 13:05 hrs THUMBNAILS A layer of smog covers the city, in Kolkata on Monday. ANI Earthquake of 4.1 magnitude hits Punjab's Amritsar: An earthquake of 4.1 magnitude was felt across Punjab's Amritsar on the intervening night of Sunday and Monday, informed National Center for Seismology (NCS).The tremors were felt at around 3:42 AM. The National Center for Seismology (NCS) said, "Earthquake of Magnitude:4.1, Occurred on 14-11-2022, 03:42:27 IST, Lat: 31.95 & Long: 73.38, Depth: 120 Km, Location: 145km WNW of Amritsar, Punjab." state of the global economy, issues relating to energy, environment, health, agriculture and digital transformation. He said G20 deliberations have acquired global salience in the current global economic and political context. NEW DELHI, 14 NOVEMBER P rime Minister Narendra Modi today said he would highlight India's achievements and its unwavering commitment to collectively address global challenges during the twoday 17th G20 Summit beginning at Bali in Indonesia tomorrow. In a statement before his departure for Bali, he said he would have extensive discussions with other G20 leaders on key issues of global concern, such as reviving global growth, food and energy security, environment, health, and digital transformation. On the sidelines of the summit, Modi said he would hold bilateral meetings with leaders of several other participating countries, and review the progress in India’s bilateral relations with them. He said he also was looking forward to addressing the Indian community in Bali at a reception tomorrow. ''In a significant moment for our country and citizens, President of Indonesia Joko Widodo will hand over the G20 Presidency to India at the closing ceremony of the Bali Summit. India will officially assume the G20 Presidency from 1 December 2022. I will also extend my personal invitation to G20 members and other invitees to our G20 Summit next year,'' the PM said. India's G20 Presidency, he said, would be grounded in the theme “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” or “One Earth One Family One Future”, underlining the message of equitable growth and a shared future for all. The summit is significant since it is being held amid the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict. Russian President Vladimir Putin has already pulled out of the summit. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will lead the Russian delegation in his absence. US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping are among the world leaders who will attend the summit. Indian Officials said Modi's bilateral meetings with other global leaders were still being finalised. However, a meeting with the Chinese leader is highly unlikely since the military stand-off between India and China at eastern Ladakh is yet to be resolved. During the summit, the G20 leaders will deliberate on key issues of global concern under the summit theme of 'Recover Together, Recover Stronger'. Three working sessions will be held as part of the G20 summit agenda. These are food and energy security, health, and digital transformation. Global challenges, including the Ukraine conflict and its implications, will figure prominently. Modi and other G20 leaders will discuss key issues of contemporary relevance. These include the Finland praises Modi over Covid management: Finland today praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the manner in which India managed the Covid pandemic and also lauded his government's efforts in developing vaccines and ensuring vaccination for countrymen. The praise came during a meeting between Finland Minister of Education and Culture Petri Honkonen and Union Minister of Science and Technology Jitendra Singh at the North Block here. The meeting was aimed at enhancing cooperation between the two countries in the field of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI). India and Finland agreed to carry mutual cooperation to a new level in a number of areas of bilateral as well as global interests. AGENCIES WASHINGTON, 14 NOVEMBER US President Joe Biden told his China counterpart Xi Jinping on Monday that he is committed to keeping lines of communication open with the latter. The meeting took place in Bali, a day before the G20 summit is due to kick off. It was the first physical meeting between Biden and Xi since the former took charge as US President. Xi spoke about charting a "flight course" for the relationship between the two superpowers, which is important not only for the two countries, but also for the whole world. The White House said in Judicious use of financial resources key to SC asks Centre on steps taken to deal armed forces combat readiness: Rajnath with forced religious conversions STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 14 NOVEMBER Defence Minister Rajnath Singh today called for judicious use of financial resources by the Defence Accounts Department (DAD) through quick and transparent decision-making, terming it as the key to strengthening the combat readiness of the armed forces. Inaugurating the two-day Controllers’ Conference of DAD here, he described officials of the department as the sentinels of the defence finance system who play their part in nation-building by managing the allotted funds with financial prudence. The DAD handles the budget allocated to the Ministry of Defence (MoD), which translates into pay and allowances of personnel, payment to pensioners, processing of financial advice cases for various procurements and processing of first and third-party claims, apart from the other auxil- iary activities, including internal audit function. In the Union Budget 202223, the MoD has been allocated a total budget of Rs 5.25 lakh crores, including Rs 1.19 lakh crores for pensions. The agenda points of the conference include Public Finance Management: Towards a system of faceless transactions; IFA System: An aid to effective decision making; Efficiency & Performance Audit: From Compliance to Assurance Framework; Improving Service Delivery; Challenges in Human Resource Management and Sustaining Major IT systems developed by the DAD. Rajnath laid special emphasis on ensuring timely payments to beneficiaries, i.e., soldiers, pensioners and third parties. He hoped that the session on ‘Public Finance Management: Towards a system of faceless transactions’ will pave the way for transparency in defence financial transactions. He exuded confidence that the conference will further improve the services of the DAD; bring transparency to its work and strengthen Human Resource Management. He urged the controllers to function with the mindset of a collaborator and work for the benefit of both Inaugurating the two-day Controllers’ Conference of DAD here, he described officials of the department as the sentinels of the defence finance system who play their part in nation-building by managing the allotted funds with financial prudence. parties. Rajnath called upon the DAD to further develop its IT capabilities and financial knowledge; bolster the internal vigilance mechanism and enhance the skills of its workforce to more efficiently discharge its duties. “If there is a doubt in the working of any officer, it should be reviewed immediately. Complaints should be settled immediately. If grievances are pending, provision should be made for their weekly or monthly audit and action should be taken,” he said. AGENCIES NEW DELHI, 14 NOVEMBER The Supreme Court on Monday said the issue of forced religious conversion is "very serious" and may affect the security of the nation and as well as freedom of citizens and asked the Centre to make its stand clear on what steps can be taken to curb forced conversions. The top court said there is freedom of religion, but no freedom on forced conversion. A bench headed by Justice M.R. Shah and comprising Justice Hima Kohli was hearing a petition filed by advocate Ashwini Upadhyay against fraudulent religious conversion and religious conversion by intimidation, threatening, deceivingly luring through gifts and monetary benefits, as it offends Articles 14, 21, and 25. Justice Shah told Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, this is such a serious matter and Mr Mehta, where is your stand by way of counter? Very serious and sincere efforts are to be made. Gruesome murder: Accused watched 'Dexter' before committing crime STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 14 NOVEMBER Delhi police have solved a sixmonth-old gruesome murder case of a 28-year-old woman in the national capital and arrested a man for allegedly killing his live-in partner, chopping her body into 35 pieces and disposing them of at different places in and around the city. The accused in the horrific murder case, had watched many crime movies and web series including 'Dexter' before committing the crime, Delhi Police sources revealed. The accused identified as Aftab Amin Poonawalla (28), a resident of Mumbai, was caught on Saturday on the basis of the deceased's father's complaint and has been sent to police remand for five days, the police said today. Officials said the victim, identified as Shraddha Walker from Mumbai, met the accused while working at a call center in Mumbai. "The two got together via a dating app in Mumbai. They were in a live-in relationship for three years and had shifted to Delhi. Soon after the two shifted to Delhi, Shraddha started pressurising the man to marry her," Additional DCPI South Delhi Ankit Chauhan said. "The two quarrelled frequently and it used to get out of control. In this particular instance that occurred on May 18, the man lost his temper and strangled her," Chouhan said. "The accused told us that he chopped her into pieces and disposed of her parts in near- by areas in the jungle area of Chhatarpur Enclave. He has been arrested and an investigation is going on," Chouhan added. The accused allegedly chopped her body into 35 pieces, bought a refrigerator and kept them in it. He later started disposing of the body pieces at different locations in and around Delhi during night hours for the next 18 days, sources said. The sources further said, Aftab used to sleep every day in the same room where he had chopped the body after killing Shraddha. He used to see the face after keeping it in the fridge. Aftab had cleaned the fridge after disposing of the body parts. The sources said Aftab had relations with many girls even before Shraddha. Before committing the crime, he also watched many crime movies and web series, including the American crime drama series Dexter. In September, the victim's friend informed her family that there was no contact with Shradhha for the last two and a half months and her mobile number was also switched off. Her family also checked her social media accounts and found no updates during this period. In November, the victim's father Vikash Madan Walker, a resident of Palghar (Maharashtra), approached Mumbai police and lodged a missing person's complaint. During the initial investigation, the victim's last location was found in Delhi, and on the basis of this, the case was transferred to Delhi police. The victim's father told the police about his daughter's relationship with Aftab and suspected his involvement in his daughter's absence. During the investigation, it was found that Aaftab and Shraddha had come to Delhi and started living in a rented apartment in Chattarpur Pahari area. The police during the course of the investigation, traced Aftab and nabbed him. The accused, during questioning, confessed to the crime and said that they fought often as Shraddha was pressurising him for marriage. "The accused has been arrested and a case under IPC sections 302 (murder) and 201 (causing disappearance of evidence of an offence committed) has been registered at Mehrauli police station," officials said. Police also recovered some bones recovered from the accused's rented flat and officials said that the efforts to recover the remaining parts of the body were on. Mehta submitted that there were two acts by MP and Orissa on forcible religious conversion and pointed out that people are lured by giving rice and wheat, which is a ground for conversion. "It is rampant in tribal areas", said Mehta, adding that he will file a reply by Monday. Justice Shah said there may be a freedom of religion, but no freedom on forced conversion and asked Mehta, what steps have been taken by the Centre, "otherwise very difficult... Make your stand very clear, what action you propose to take." The bench told Mehta that Centre must step in to stop such forceful conversion before the situation becomes difficult and asked the government to make its stand clear on forced religious conversions. The top court said the issue with alleged conversion of religion, if it is found to be true, affects the security of the nation as well as the freedom of citizen, therefore it is better that Union of India make its stand clear and file a counter on what steps can be taken to curb forced conversions by force, allurement or fraudulent means. After hearing arguments, the bench scheduled the matter for further hearing on November 28 and asked the Centre to file its response before November 22. On September 23, the Supreme Court issued notice on a plea against fraudulent religious conversion and religious conversion by intimidation, threatening, deceivingly luring through gifts and monetary benefits, as it offends Articles 14, 21, and 25. The plea claimed that if such conversions were not checked, Hindus would soon become a minority in India. Mamata apologises for her minister’s statement STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE KOLKATA, 14 NOVEMBER CM Mamata Banerjee today condemned state correctional administration minister Akhil Giri’s comments on President Droupadi Murmu and apologised on behalf of the Trinamul Congress by saying that she has great regards for her. “I apologise for what my MLA said about the President. We have high respect for the President. She is a highly respected lady. Akhil’s comment is unwanted and wrong. He should not have said this. We have condemned his comment and cautioned him from the party. I believe that beauty is not in the outer appear- ance but it’s an inward thing. Our President is a really nice lady. Akhil has done injustice,” said Miss Banerjee at a press conference in Nabanna. Banerjee’s apology came days after Mr Giri, in a viral video, was heard commenting on the looks of the President. “They (read the BJP) said that I am not good-looking. We don't judge anyone by their appearance. We respect the office of the President. But how does our President look?” Mr Giri was heard saying at a rally in a village in Nandigram on Friday evening. While reiterating that she does not support Mr Giri, Miss Banerjee slammed BJP for telling lies and using foul language which is unacceptable. “Somebody has committed a mistake and we are opposing that. We aren't supporting it. But every day, the language that is being used to make statements and the lying that is continuing is unacceptable,” she added. a statement: "President Biden raised Russia's brutal war against Ukraine and Russia's irresponsible threats of nuclear use. President Biden and President Xi reiterated their agreement that a nuclear war should never be fought and can never be won and underscored their opposition to the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine. President Biden also raised concerns about the DPRK's provocative behavior, noted all members of the international community have an interest in encouraging the DPRK to act responsibly, and underscored the United States' ironclad commitment to defending our Indo-Pacific Allies." FACT FILE TOTAL CASES 4,46,66,924 ACTIVE CASES 9,468 NEW CASES 547 NEW RECOVERIES 3,385 TOTAL DEATHS 5,30,532 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. MONDAY 14 NOVEMBER 2022 India records 547 new Covid cases, one death in last 24 hours STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 14 NOVEMBER India recorded 547 new COVID-19 cases while one death was reported due to the coronavirus in the last 24 hours, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said on Monday. With the addition of one more death due to the COVID19, the total number of fatalities due to the coronavirus now stands at 5,30,532 in the country. The total number of COVID-19 cases in the country now stands at 4,46,66,924 including 9,468 active cases. Active cases account for 0.02 per cent of the total cases. As per the Ministry's data, the recovery rate currently is at 98.79 per cent while the total recoveries now stands at 4,41,26,924. On the COVID-19 vaccination front, more than 219.80 crore of COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered so far under the nationwide vaccination drive.
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