KOCHI l FRIDAY l AUGUST 9, 2019 l `7.00 l PAGES 32 l LATE CITY EDITION PRANAB GETS THE COUNTRY’S HIGHEST CIVILIAN AWARD Late Jana Sangh leader Nanaji Deshmukh and late singer Bhupen Hazarika have also been conferred the Bharat Ratna POSTHUMOUS AWARDS FOR BHUPEN, NANAJI ■ January 25 5TH PRESIDENT TO GET THE AWARD President Ram Nath Kovind gave the award to former president Pranab Mukherjee, Hazarika’s son Tej and Vikramjeet Singh, a close relative of Deshmukh, at a function held at Rashtrapati Bhavan on Thursday. Vice President M Venkaikah Naidu, PM Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh were present at the function ■ ■ The Bharat Ratna has been conferred after a gap of four years Former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and founder of Banaras Hindu University Madan Mohan Malviya were given the award by the Narendra Modi government in 2015 Mukherjee is the fifth president to receive this award THE ANNOUNCEMENT FOR BHARAT RATNA WAS MADE EARLY THIS YEAR CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA ■ BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOGGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ WARANGAL ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR ■ KALABURAGI North and central Kerala suffer the most due to the spate of rain Showers expected to continue for two more days, according to Met Dept Red alert sounded in four districts until tomorrow AGAIN? A year after, rain seems never-ending, another flood looms E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Kochi EXACTLY a year after the 2018 flood, Kerala is once again on the edge. Heavy rain continued to pound many parts of the state for the second consecutive day, causing landslides and widespread destruction and claiming at least eight lives. Reports said about 40 people are trapped under the debris of a big landslide at Meppadi in Wayanad district. Five districts — Kannur, Kozhikode, Wayanad, Idukki and Malappuram — are affected badly with hundreds of people forced to move to safer areas, leaving homes and properties behind. Flights were diverted due to poor visibility trains , were running late and road traffic came to a halt in several places as roads caved in. Rivers including Thodupuzha and Muvattupuzha are in full spate. Periyar rose above the danger-mark after the shutters of small dams like Munnar, Kallarkutty, Lower Periyar, Bhoothathankettu, Poringalkuthu and Malankara were opened as a precaution. Three bridges in Idukki — Attukudu across Muthirapuzha near Pallivasal, Periyavara across Kannimala river near Munnar and one at Mankulam — were washed away in the gushing waters, cutting off Marayur and Mankulam from the mainland. With the Met Department predicting more rains during the next 24 hours, the district collectors have declared holiday on Friday in 12 districts, except Kollam and Thiruvananthapuram. Three people each died in Idukki and Wayanad districts, one each at Attapady (Palakkad) and Thrissur, taking the death toll since Wednesday to 10. Flights were diverted from Kozhikode and Kochi. Due to water clogging at apron, the Kochi airpoirt suspnded decided to suspend operations till 9 am on Friday Worryingly, heavy rains are likely to con. tinue till Saturday with the Met Department declaring red alert in Idukki, Kozhikode and Wayanad ● More on P4 districts. Rescue workers evacuate a family from a flooded house at Nilambur in Malappuram district | EXPRESS FURY IN FACTS & FIGURES 8 9,475 rainfall recorded In Wayanad district Shutters of many small dams opened 3 bridges in Idukki washed away While water level remained unchanged in Bharathapuzha river, it is steadily going up in Periyar and Pampa Tourism banned in Idukki district till August 15 Chief Minister convenes urgent meeting. State to approach Centre seeking 10 teams of National Disaster Response Force Holiday for edu institutions in all districts except Kollam & T’Puram State disaster management authorities expect another heavy spell by Aug 14-15 If you live in one of the affected areas, be sure to follow directions from your local officials. If told to evacuate, do so immediately! Pinarayi Vijayan, Chief Minister Road traffic got disrupted mainly in north Kerala and Idukki after trees fell on roads @ Kozhikode SCORES of people were stranded and several buildings including temples, churches and houses were destroyed in the gushing waters following a landslide at Puthumala, some 12 km from Meppadi near Kalpetta in Wayanad, on Thursday evening. “The area has the tea plantation of Harrison Malayalam where hundreds of labourers work. They have their ‘padees’ The rescue teams and others could not be reached as the Meppadi-Puthumala road has been blocked due to the landslide and uprooted trees. Vehicles cannot proceed beyond Kalladi, said a source. According to Transport Minister C K Saseendran, army and rescue teams cannot reach the area. “The road Landslide near Puthumala at Meppadi in should be cleared for them to Wayanad on Thursday | EXPRESS reach the spot and gather corthere. It is feared that at least rect information. Earth-mov30 people are stuck in these ers have been pressed into serpadees,” said a local source. vice to clear the road but heavy rain is posing a threat,” he said. A video, said to be posted from Puthumala, showed shocking visuals of several buildings being razed to the ground in the deluge. In other incidents, three persons including a couple died in the district on Thursday . Sumesh, 28, and wife Prenu, 25, of Muttil Pazhashi Colony were killed following a landslide while a 24-year-old woman Muthu of Panamaram died while being shifted to a safe ● More on P5 place. Train services were stopped at many places due to poor visibility and strong winds Operations suspended at Kochi airport till 9am on Friday. Many flights diverted and some cancelled at Kochi and Kozhikode airports 1079 Disaster management control room ph no 2 lakh displaced due to floods in West Maharashtra, 27 dead 2,05,591 people have been shifted to safer places in Sangli, Kolhapur, Solapur, Pune and Satara districts Sangli and Kolhapur are the worst-affected RAYAGADA | ODISHA l 1.3 Lakh people affected, 14,322 people evacuated l 3 dead and 2 missing l 9 districts, 43 blocks, 1,012 villages affected l 5 Urban Local Bodies affected l 2,081 houses damaged l95 free kitchens opened 7 TEAMS of Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force deployed for rescue and relief operations BELGAVI | KARNATAKA l 16 districts hit by floods/heavy rains l Belgavi in North Karnataka is the worst hit with 8 dead l Schools and colleges are in many districts 40,000 People have so far been evacuated from several flood-hit villages in different parts of the state POLAVARAM | ANDHRA l The twin districts of Godavari and Srikakulam are the worst-hit l 206 NDRF and SDRF men deployed in East Godavari 46,580 People evacuated, govt announces I5,000 immediate relief per flood-hit family EXPRESS READ Kottayam: In a major twist in the Nedumkandam custodial death case, the fresh autopsy examination conducted by a team of forensic experts has found that severe torture led to the death of Rajkumar. The report submitted by the forensic team stated that “the death was due to complications of multiple blunt injuries on the body”. P6 Kolkata: THE World Archery (WA) on Thursday suspended the Archery Association of India (AAI) for defying its guidelines by electing two parallel bodies, asking the federation to put its house in order by the end of this month. The decision is effective from Monday and the last event in which the archers can participate under the Indian flag is the World Archery Youth Championships in Madrid. WITH THIS ISSUE KOCHI’S BEST WEEKEND GUIDE 32 PAGES, INCLUDING 16 OF INDULGE (TABLOID) MAHARASHTRA HAVOC, HARDSHIP ELSEWHERE... PRIME Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday reached out to the Kashmiris to sell the nullification of Article 370 and reorganising the state as the magic bullet to usher in a new era of all round development and prosperity . In his nearly 40-minute-long address to the nation, Modi underscored that Article 370 was impeding development. He talked about corruption and dynasty impacting growth in the state and how Article 370 deprived people of J&K from enjoying facilities available in other parts of the country. But, the speech hardly had any mention of ways to counter alienation and militancy Referring to the current lock. down in the state, he said the situation will ease gradually. “I want to assure friends of J&K that the situation will gradually return to normalcy and their difficulties will ease.” Modi wished people on the eve of Eid and said the government is working to ensure people aren’t troubled on the day of the festival, adding the government is also helping those who want to go home to J&K to celebrate Eid. “Article 370 and Article 35A gave only separatism, nepotism and corruption to the people. The rights enjoyed by the daughters of other regions were not enjoyed by those of J&K. SCs, STs and OBC s in India enjoy special benefits but it did not apply in J&K,” Modi said adding that the abrogation of the two Articles has created a level playing field. The PM also urged industrialists, PSUs and other stakeholders to take policies decisions that could benefit the youth of the state. World Archery suspends Indian federation Scores trapped after major landslide hits Wayanad EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi Autopsy confirms torture led to Rajkumar’s death MOVED TO RELIEF CAMPS AS LOW-LYING AREAS GET INUNDATED 204.3mm killed on Thursday AFFECTED In outreach, Modi promises better deal to Kashmiris GOA 150 families have been evacuated in four tehsils of Goa after rain Tourists, fishermen advised to stay away from the sea Many villages in Bardez, Pernem, Bicholim flooded ‘POLLS WILL BE TRANSPARENT’ ■ J&K will not remain an UT forever. In future, J&K Assembly elections take place. It will be transparent. We want new energetic youth to become MLAs, ministers and chief minister ■ Closer cooperation with the Centre will help put an end to terrorism and separatism in the region ■ Govt respects objections of those who are opposed to the new plan and is working to address them. I urge them them to put national interests supreme PSC questions leaked from exam centre E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ T’Puram THE special branch officers investigating the PSC police constable examination fraud suspect that the question paper was leaked from the University College, an examination centre. The officers received the vital information from Gokul, the civil police officer accused of sending answers as SMSes to SFI leader P P Pranav, who secured second rank. “The question papers of the absentees were collected with the help of the class-IV staff of the college. The answers were prepared by Gokul and another person named Safeer. The latter sent about 80 text messages to Sivarenjith and Pranav who sat for the examination at different centres in Attingal,” officers said. The accused prepared the answers on the Sanskrit College campus opposite to the University College. The cyber police had found the accused used SIM card-supported smart watch to receive the SMSes. ● More on P6 ANOTHER DRAMA? Sriram has ‘retrograde amnesia’; SIT needs to wait ed IAS officer in the car at the time of fatally knocking down journalist K M IAS officer Sriram Venkataraman, Basheer in the capital city last week. under treatment at the Medical Colthe officer was shifted from traulege Hospital here, is suffering from ma ICU to high-care (stepdown) ward retrograde amnesia --- partial or total on Thursday . loss of one’s ability to recall events “The medical board had a thorough look at Sriram’s condition that occurred during the period and based on that he was shiftbefore brain injury .’ ed to the ward. In addition, The hospital said it might he has a ligament tear on his take time for him to recover wrist and slipped disc. He from the condition, a post-concussion syndrome. might have to continue his The special investigation treatment for three weeks,” team headed by ADGP Sheikh said an MCH officer. He addSriram ed surgery would be perDarvesh Sahib will find it Venkataraman formed on him after that, tough as the recording of his but only if needed. statement will get affected. Meanwhile, the Psychiatry DepartThe team had earlier served notices to Museum police station personnel, ment is providing Sriram medication Sriram and Wafa Firoze, the woman after it felt he is still suffering from who was with the allegedly inebriat- post-traumatic stress disorder. EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ T’PURAM
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