KOTTAYAM l THURSDAY l MARCH 26, 2020 l `7.00 l PAGES 14 l CITY EDITION $ US FINALISES $2TN STIMULUS TO HELP WORKERS, HOSPITALS The measure will put cash directly into the hands of Americans, provide grants to small businesses and loans for large corporations $500 BN FOR BIZ, $75 BN FOR HOSPITALS SENSEX, NIFTY LOG BEST DAY IN 10 YEARS Senate and House of Representatives need to pass the bill before sending it to President Donald Trump for his signature. The package includes $500 bn to help hard-hit industries and a comparable amount for payments of up to $3,000 to millions of US families. It also includes $350 bn for small biz loans, $250 bn for unemployment aid and $75 bn for hospitalsw ■ ■ ■ Indian stock benchmarks posted their best single-day rise in over a decade on Wednesday, mirroring buoyancy in global markets The Sensex shot up 1,861.75 points, or 7%, to settle at 28,535.78, while Nifty spurted 516.80 points, or 6.62%, to end at 8,317.85 Indian markets are also factoring in expected stimulus package A2 lakh cr STIMULUS IS NEEDED FOR DOMESTIC ECONOMY, ACCORDING TO INDIA INC 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 State takes legislative route to toughen prohibitive measures Free ration to benefit 87.14 lakh households; food kit worth C1,000 for monitored families SOCIAL DISTANCING AT CABINET MEET More grains to curb anxiety Union Cabinet approves proposal to increase the monthly quota of PDS grains by 2 kg to 80 crore beneficiaries; Modi warns of action against those misbehaving with docs, nurses BENGALURU TRAFFIC PASS Bengaluru Police will issue two types of passes — one for persons and another for vehicles — for people and vehicles that will be allowed to move CELEBRITY CHEF FLOYD CARDOZ DEAD NOTED CHEF FLOYD CARDOZ, 59, CO-OWNER OF TWO POPULAR RESTAURANTS IN MUMBAI, INCLUDING BOMBAY CANTEEN, DIED AFTER TESTING POSITIVE FOR CORONAVIRUS IN NEW YORK G-20 VIRTUAL SUMMIT TODAY Saudi Arabia’s King Salman will chair a G20 emergency virtual summit on COVID-19 on Thursday. The idea was mooted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi when he shared the outcome of the SAARC video conference with the Saudi Crown Prince MORE INDIANS AIRLIFTED A batch of 277 people evacuated from Iran arrived at the Jodhpur airport in Rajasthan on Wednesday POSITIVE, NEGATIVE A Delhi patient who died on Tuesday was added to the fatality list as he tested positive for coronavirus. But since his second test was negative, he is no longer part of the toll, the Union health ministry said US EVACUATION The US embassy in India is working with the State Department and various airlines to arrange flights to take Americans back home. “Once these flights are arranged, we will work with the Indian government to arrange to the greatest extent possible safe passage to airports for US citizens,” the embassy said PRINCE CHARLES TESTS POSITIVE BRITAIN’S PRINCE CHARLES IS IN SELF-ISOLATION IN SCOTLAND AFTER HE TESTED POSITIVE FOR THE VIRUS S A N A S H A K I L @ New Delhi WITH India going into full lockdown for three weeks from Wednesday to control the spread of the coronavirus, the Centre sought allay the anxiety of around 80 crore people enrolled with ration shops by increasing their monthly quota of subsidised foodgrains by 2 kg each — from 5 kg to 7 kg. “The poor and vulnerable sections need support. The Centre has decided that 80 crore people will be covered under the National Food Security Act,” said Union Minister Prakash Javdekar, said after the Union Cabinet’s meeting. Amid reports of panic buying, the Union home ministry asked all states and Union Territories to give wide publicity to the fact that the country has ample supplies of all essential commodities while curbing the spread of rumours. It also issued detailed advisories on setting up round-theclock control rooms and helplines for providers of essential goods and services, including at the inter-state level. It suggested a standard operating procedure to facilitate them by appointing nodal officers at inter-state borders and issuing vehicular passes/e-passes. In a separate letter, the home ministry said urged states/UTs to take necessary steps to publicise that all essentials like food, medical, civil supplies and other essential services will be maintained. In another advisory to the private security agencies, the ministry urged them to adopt a humane approach during the lockdown and not sack employees or cut salaries. The ministry urged the agencies to show empathy with its workforce. “This is the time for private security industry to adopt a humane approach and protect its workers and staff members from lay-offs,” it said. During his video interaction with residents of Varanasi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi warned of action against those misbehaving with frontline staff fighting the virus. If anybody targets doctors, nurses and all those rendering their service during this crisis, then it will cost them dearly, Modi said, adding those in white coats are God’s incarnation. EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ T’Puram LEAVING no stone unturned to contain the coronavirus outbreak, the Kerala Government has opted for the legislative route to strengthen proh i b i t ive m e a s u re s. T h e Cabinet meeting on Wednesday approved the Kerala Epidemic Diseases Ordinance 2020 which will give the government greater powers to act in the face of a pandemic. The ordinance replaces the Travancore Epidemic Diseases Act, Cochin Epidemic Diseases Act and the Epidemic Diseases Act (1987) in force in Malabar. It enables the gover nment to adopt stringent measures like closing down the state’s borders, restricting public and private transportation, and bringing in additional guidelines for social control. The government can also restrict or ban people coming together in places of worship and other public spaces, apart from controlling or banning public programmes organised by individuals or groups. Further, the new ordinance empowers the state to bring in more regulations and restrictions in the functioning of various sectors including essential services. Violators will face a jail term of up to two years or a fine of `10,000. On a day that saw nine more Covid-19 positive cases being reported, the government decided to give free ration of 15kg of rice each to all families in the state. The Cabinet also exempted the Kerala State Drugs and Pharmaceuticals Limited from the tendering process to purchase or source raw materials required for the production of sanitizers and drugs like Paracetamol Tablet IP 500mg, Azhitromycin Tablet IP 500mg, Chloropheniramine Meleate Tablet 4 mg, Amoxycillin Capsule IP 250 mg, Amoxycillin Capsule IP 500mg, Cloxacillin Capsule IP 250mg, Cetrizine Tablet IP 10mg, and Hydroxy Chloroquine NF 200mg. 15kg rice for all The free ration of 15kg rice will benefit 87.14 lakh ration card holders in the state in the backdrop of the 21-day lockdown. This is outside of the 30kg of rice and 5kg of wheat being provided to the Antyodaya ration card holders. Pink card holders belonging to the priority category will get 5kg of rice at `2 per person while non-priority ration card holders (blue and white) will get 15kg of rice free of cost per card. Further, special food kit worth `1,000 will be home delivered to monitored families with the help of the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority The Health Depart. ment is preparing a list of eli● More on P6 gible families. 6 patients under treatment in state test negative Six persons under treatment in the state tested negative on Wedne -sday. Two were discharged after recovery from Thrissur and T’Puram, taking the total number of people discharged to six. Three new cases were reported from Ernakulam, two each from Palakkad and Pathanamthitta, and one each from Idukki and Kozhikode. CASE DIARY 9 new positive cases were reported on Wednesday 6 90 fresh cases were reported across the country on Wednesday 512 active cases in the country, according to Union health ministry 2.09L passengers who arrived from coronavirusaffected countries have been screened at the Delhi airport till date THE Centre on Wednesday urged healthcare volunteers including retired doctors to help the government in tackling coronavirus. At least 90 fresh cases were reported across the country on Wednesday taking the total count , of confirmed cases to 606. Maharashtra is on top of the list with a worrisome 128 cases, followed by Kerala at 112. While Kerala reported 9 more infections on Wednesday, there was no fresh case from the worst-hit Kasaragod. The Union health ministry put the number of active Covid-19 cases in the country at 512 and the number of recovered patients at 42. Tamil Nadu reported one death. The Centre reiterated that there has been no community transmission of the disease, maintaining that all the cases in India are either imported or locally transmitted. It also published guidelines on the practice of telemedicine, which will help doctors offer consultation to patients through video, phone and internet-based platforms in a standardised manner. These guidelines, prepared in consultation with the Niti Aayog, have been in the making for long but have been notified now as the government wants people to limit outpatient consultation unless absolutely essential. EXPRESS READ Hold debt payments by poor nations: IMF, WB G Jayaraj removed as C-Dit director Washington: The International Monetary Fund and World Bank on Wednesday, two of the world’s largest development lenders, called for governments to put a hold on debt payments from the world’s poorest nations so they can battle the coronavirus pandemic T’Puram: The state government has removed G Jayaraj as director of the Centre for Development of Imaging Technology (C-Dit). IT Mission Director Dr Chithra S has been given additional charge of C-Dit director, an order issued by IT Principal Secretary M Sivasankar said on Tuesday. EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ T’Puram 265 36 outlets run by Bevco managed by Consumerfed State plans to release prisoners THE Kerala Government on Wednesday ordered to shut down all liquor outlets and toddy shops in the state until a further order is issued in the wake of the Covid-19 scare. Bars were closed on Monday. There have been widespread calls to shut the outlets, which attract big crowds and long queues. As many as 265 outlets run by Bevco and 36 managed by T O B Y A N T O N Y @ Kochi TO prevent a Covid-19 outbreak in the prisons in Kerala, the state government has constituted a high-powered committee to consider the release of prisoners on parole or on interim bail. The move fol- the Consumerfed have been shut. The state government is reportedly exploring the possibility of selling liquor via online. But the Abkari Policy as , it stands, does not have the provision for it. Rules have to be amended and the state government is expected to take a decision in two days. Despite strong demand from the Opposition, the state had been reluctant to shut down bars and liquor outlets, which are the state’s major sources of income. lows a Supreme Court order to avoid overcrowding in prisons in the backdrop of rising coronavirus infections. “There is a broad understanding to release prisoners sentenced to less than seven years of imprisonment,” a source told TNIE. P6 have recovered so far FRESH MEASURES District collector and district police chiefs have been directed to carry out lockdown restrictions more diligently Community kitchen to be opened at panchayat level to serve food to the needy. A common phone number to be provided to contact them Govt to take over all hospitals lying closed All patients and bystanders will be provided free food at hospitals Launch of 1,000 eateries to be fast-tracked All people stranded outside the state have been asked to stay there until further order State government website to provide details of people who have come from foreign countries Paddy harvest has been included in the list of essential services Local bodies have been told to identify facility to store agriculture products and other cash crops 54 lakh to be given welfare pensions from March 27 OVER 600 +VE CASES Finally, Kerala govt downs shutters NOW, TWO MORE DIE on liquor outlets and toddy shops E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi 118 cases have been confirmed in the state As per district collector’s order, we had informed the hospital owner to handover the building but he refused A revenue official A police officer breaks open the hospital building at Anchal on Wednesday | EXPRESS Officials take over defunct hosp after owner says no E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Kollam OFFICERS from the revenue and police departments broke open and took over a defunct private hospital at Anchal near here after its owner refused to hand over the building to set up a Covid care centre. The district administration and Health Department have been taking possession of unused buildings and facilities under state government’s Plan C to convert them into isolation wards. The private hospital has been lying unused for the past few months. “The Health Department has been identifying defunct hospitals for setting up care centres. As per district collector’s order, we had informed the hospital owner to handover the building but he refused,” said a revenue official. Punalur Tahsildar Nirmal Kumar led the team for the takeover. At least 27 dead as ISIS terrorists attack Kabul gurudwara EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi AT least 27 people were killed and seven others injured after terrorists attacked a gurudwara in Kabul on Wednesday. ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack. According to Afghanistan’s interior ministry, the gunmen attacked the gurudwara at 7.45 am local time. “All four terrorists who attacked a Sikh area of worship in PD1 of Kabul were neutralised after six hours,” Afghan special forces told local media. The ministry said 80 people, including women and children, were rescuee. India condemned the attack saying cowardly attacks on places of religious worship of minorities, especially at this time of Covid-19 pandemic, are reflective of the dia- bolical mindset of the perpetrators and their backers. “We commend the brave Afghan security forces for their valorous response to the attack and their exemplary courage and dedication to protect the Afghan people and secure the country India stands in solidar. ity with the people, the govern- ment and the security forces of Afghanistan in their efforts for bringing peace and security to the country,” the ministry of external affairs said. Sikh Afghan MP Narendar Singh Khalisa told local media that up to 150 people were praying inside the gurdwara when it came under attack.
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26032020 of The New Indian Express-Kottayam
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