VIJAYAWADA l THURSDAY l JUNE 04, 2020 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l LATE CITY EDITION CYCLONE NISARG BATTERS KONKAN, SPARES MUMBAI FALLING TREES DAMAGE HOUSES, CARS The cyclone made landfall in Maharashtra’s Raigad district around 1 pm on Wednesday bringing winds of up to 120 kph HEAVY RAINS LASH MUMBAI, PUNE The cyclone uprooted trees and electricity poles causing widespread damages to private property in the worst-hit Raigad district where a 58-year-old man was killed, when a power transformer, knocked down by strong winds, fell over him. Falling trees blocked roads and caused damages to houses and cars in others districts along the Konkan coast ■ ■ By evening, Nisarg weakened into a cyclonic storm and headed to Maharashtra’s north-east. It may weaken further by midnight Although spared the cyclone’s full fury, Mumbai and Pune were lashed by heavy rains, that caused waterlogging in many areas. Gujarat, which evacuated thousands, reported no big damages 18,887 PEOPLE MOVED TO 30 TEMPORARY SHELTERS IN MUMBAI 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 Dy Collector arrested over land scam EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Vijayawada THE Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing irregularities in Amaravati land arrested a Deputy Collector of the AP Capital Region Develo p m e n t Au t h o r i t y o n Wednesday for allegedly registering government lands to private parties. The police said Deputy Collector Madhuri got land registered in the name of Ravella Gopalakrishna in Nekkallu in 2016. The SIT earlier took Gopalakrishna into custody and found the Deputy Collector was behind the registration of three acres in his name. The SIT questioned Madhuri at her residence in Vijayawada on Wednesday afternoon and later arrested her. EXPRESS READ Foreign bizmen, med staff can enter India New Delhi: The Central government has excluded businessmen and healthcare professionals from the travel restrictions imposed on foreigners in the wake of the Covid-19 outbreak, but they’ll have to obtain a fresh visa before flying in Farmers freed from mandi stranglehold SC backs HC on repainting govt buildings EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE State laws restricted to mandi perimeter alone; ad-hocism on stocking, export of produce ends M A N I S H A N A N D @ New Delhi LONG-AWAITED agrarian marketing reforms got a decisive push in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, as the Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved three Ordinances to unshackle farmers from restrictive state laws on mandis (APMC Act) and price fluctuations (Essential Commodities Act), besides allowing unhindered contract farming. The Centre took the Ordinance route after all persuasion to prod states on agricultural marketing reforms failed. Freeing farmers from compulsions to sell their produce only to registered licensee traders of state governments under the Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee Act (APMC), the Cabinet gave the nod to “The Farming Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and facilitation) Ordinance, 2020.” No state law will affect sell-purchase of agricultural produce outside the mandi perimeter. Buyers would just need to have PAN cards, rules for which will be framed by the Centre, said Union minister for agriculture Narendra Singh Tomar after the Cabinet meeting. Doing away with policy ad-hocism through stock-holding limits and banning exports to curb price rise, the Cabinet approved the second Ordinance to amend the Essential Commodities Act to take cereals, onions, pulses, edible oils, oilseeds and potatoes out of its purview. The law can be changed only in the event of war or excessive price rise, added Tomar. To promote the concept of ‘one nation, one agricultural market’, the Cabinet through the third Ordinance allowed farmers and bulk buyers to enter into contracts at guaranteed prices, adding no state laws will affect such transactions. Farmers will also be able to get part of the additional value at the time of delivery of the produce. It does not mean leasing of land, said Tomar, adding that in the event of crop failure, only advance paid to them by the buyers could be recovered. Payments to farmers must be made by buyers within three days of delivery of the produce, while dispute resolution will first be through mediation at the sub-divisional magistrate level and the final award by the district magistrate. NITI Aayog’s proposal in 2015 to reform state farm laws had drawn a tepid response. @ New Delhi/Vijayawada Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy inspects furniture that will be used in schools, in Tadepalli on Wednesday | EXPRESS SCHOOLS TO GET NEW ‘NADU NEDU’ LOOK BY AUG COMING SOON TO AP SCHOOLS Appraisal system for students of Classes 6 to 10 App to clear students’ doubts via video calls Toll-free number in all schools for students, parents to complain to govt about amenities ‘Nadu-Nedu’ work to be completed by July-end EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Vijayawada CHIEF Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Wednesday directed officials of the school education department to finish revamping schools under the ‘Mana Badi - Nadu Nedu’ scheme by the end of July, before schools reopen on August 3. Under the first phase of the scheme, 15,715 government schools will be renovated, and fans, blackboards, water purifiers, cupboards and other furniture have been bought for this. Schools will get nine facilities including compound walls, toilets, and English labs. Some of the new furniture was brought to the Chief Minister’s camp office on Wednesday, and he inspected it. The State has opted for centralised procurement, and about `890 crore is needed for the materials. Tenders were finalised for all items other than sanitary ware, and `144.8 crore was saved through reverse tendering. As many as 3 lakh benches for Classes 1 to 6, and 2.1 lakh benches for Classes 7 to 10 have been ordered, besides 89,340 tables and chairs for teachers, 16,334 cupboards, 72,596 green chalkboards, and P5 1,57,150 ceiling fans. THE Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed the Andhra Pradesh government’s appeal against an AP High Court order asking it to remove the colours of the ruling YSRCP’s flag from government and ‘panchayat’ buildings. A bench of Justice L Nageswara Rao, Justice Krishan Murari and Justice S Ravindra Bhat did not agree to the government’s submission on the issue. The state government was represented by lawyer G N Reddy who said the High Court , order was against using party flag colours on government buildings including ‘panchayat bhawans’. The High Court had ordered the removal of colours that resemble those of political party flags within 10 days. It also ordered for the buildings to be repainted. Aggrieved with the order, the state government appealed before the Supreme Court. Responding to the development in the apex court, TDP supremo N Chandrababu Naidu demanded that the expenditure incurred for painting party colours be recovered from the YSRCP . CONTINUED ON P5
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