THRISSUR l SUNDAY l JULY 26, 2020 l `8.00 l PAGES 24 l CITY EDITION NEW STUDENTS CAN’T ENTER U.S. IF COURSE FULLY ONLINE WON’T AFFECT THOSE ALREADY THERE WILL HIT POOR STUDENTS HARDER The latest action will not affect international students who are already in the US or those returning from abroad. It comes as US President Donald Trump has stepped up pressure on educational institutions to fully reopen despite the Covid-19 pandemic. Many leading US universities, including Harvard and Princeton, have pushed their classes entirely or mostly online US officials on Saturday said foreign students not enrolled as of Mar 9 won’t be able to obtain visas for 100% online courses ■ ■ Studying from home would be a challenge for many, especially those from poor or war-hit countries. Also, many students would need to attend classes at odd hours due to time zone differences Saturday’s announcement comes days after Trump rescinded a hotly contested order to expel foreign students already in the US 2.5 lakh FOREIGN STUDENTS WERE EXPECTED TO ENTER THE U.S. THIS YEAR CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■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 UN report warns Bride, groom and 41 at wedding function test +ve of ISIS presence 1,103 in K’taka, Kerala KERALA CASE DIARY fresh cases on Saturday 838 Says 150-200 AQIS terrorists planning to avenge their leader Asim Umar’s killing alleged links with ISKP They . were also reportedly in touch A ‘significant’ number of Is- with a Kashmiri couple — Jalamic State of Iraq & Syria hanzeb Sami Wani and his (ISIS) terrorists are holed up wife Hina Bashir Beigh — in Kerala and Karnataka, ac- who were arrested by the NIA cording to a new report on ter- in March this year from r o r i s m b y t h e U n i t e d Delhi. Nations. A c c o r d i n g t o N I A’ s The UN report comes close chargesheet, ‘Al Hind’ was on the heels of the chargesheet founded in April 2019 from the filed by the National house-cum-office of Investigation Agen- Kerala link in Mehboob Pasha in cy (NIA) earlier this Kabul attack Bengaluru with the month, against 17 acobjective of carrying Two terrorists cused in the Bengalout terror attacks in ur u ISIS module from Kerala were South India and for reportedly case. The NIA had establishing the Isstated that the ac- behind an Islamic lamic Khilafat in cused from Kerala State attack on a India. Gurdwara in and Karnataka had “Al Hind’ is reportKabul’s Shor floated a terrorist oredly ‘Hind Wilaya’ Bazar area on ganization called Al (Province of India), March 15 that Hind, which was which finds mention killed 27 planning to execute in the UN report,” worshippers ter ror strikes in the counter-intelliSouth India. gence officer added. “The Bengaluru ISIS modThe UN report also warns ule is reportedly inspired by that al-Qaida in the Indian the Islamic State Khorasan Subcontinent (AQIS), is planProvince (ISKP) or IS-K, ning attacks in the region to which has presence in Cen- avenge the death of their leadtral and South Asia,” said an er Asim Umar, who was killed official. in September last year in a On July 13, the NIA arrest- joint military operation by ed two persons – Nabeel S US-Afghanistan forces. AQIS Khatri and Sadia Anwar is now headed by Mahmood Sheikh — from Pune for their Osama, a Pakistani cleric. Infected through local transmission B A L A C H A U H A N @ Bengaluru KHELO INDIA IN HARYANA E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi THE Khelo India Youth Games has been postponed from January next year because of the pandemic. Sports minister Kiren Rijiju on Saturday announced that the fourth edition of the Games will be hosted at Panchkula, Haryana after the Tokyo Olympics in 2021. He is hopeful that by the time Haryana hosts it, the pandemic would “abate and more than 10,000 athletes would participate”. The last KYIG was held in Guwahati early this year where around 10,000 athletes P11 and officials participated. WITH THIS ISSUE THE KINDER INDIA PLUS 12 PAGES 9,420 5 Active cases Deaths OVER 100 CASES IN 4 DISTRICTS Four districts reported over 100 cases on the day. T'Puram 240, Kozhikode 110, Kasaragod 105 & Alappuzha 102 Two BSF personnel and three DSC personnel also tested positive on Saturday EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Kasaragod FIRST funeral, now wedding. Forty-three persons who attended a wedding at Pilankatta in Chengala panchayat in Kasaragod on July 17 have tested positive for Covid-19, said district medical officer (DMO) A V Ramdas. They include the bride and the groom. District Collector D Sajith Babu has asked all those who attended the wedding to go into home quarantine for the next 14 days. Those with Covid symptoms should get in touch with the nearest primary health centre, he said. The DMO said samples of 128 persons linked to the wedding Swapna reveals role of 2 UAE diplomats in gold smuggling E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @Kochi SWAPNA Suresh, the second accused in the Thiruvananthapuram gold smuggling case, has confided in Customs sleuths that two top diplomats at the UAE consulate here were fully aware of the smuggling activities. She also reportedly disclosed that the two envoys at the UAE mission had been paid every time the ‘baggage’ successfully cleared the airport check. A source said the accused had successfully conducted the operation 18 times since September 2019 and an estimated 150-180 kg of gold was thus brought in illegally under the cover of diplomatic baggage. Swapna had stated this before the Customs sleuths on Friday . The Customs will seek custody of Swapna and third accused Sandeep Nair on Monday . “Swapna has named two diplomats who had been paid for bringing gold through the diplomatic channels. Both have left India. She said that a sum of $1,500 was given to the diplomats every time a baggage arrives. We are verifying her claims. Right from the time the probe started, we have come across several pieces of evidence which reveal the involvement of diplomats,” said the source. However, the Customs doesn’t expect to be granted access to diplomats anywhere soon. The agency has communicated the matter to the Ministry of External Affairs. “Sandeep and first accused Sarith had earlier been colleagues in a private company. They brought in Swapna due to her influence at the UAE consulate. We are not sure whether we can get even a statement from the diplomats in this regard since they have already left the country ,” ● More on P4 a source said. EXPRESS READ Notices under Spl Marriage Act not to be uploaded on site Palathayi child abuse case: Probe team expanded Order warning action against cops withdrawn T’Puram: Henceforth, notices containing the details of couples who intend to get married under the Special Marriage Act will be displayed only in front of the sub-registrar’s office concerned. The practice of uploading the details on Registration Department website has been discontinued. The move comes in the wake of a section of people downloading the profiles and using them to threaten inter-faith couples who intend to get married. P5 T’Puram: The state police have expanded the Crime Branch team probing the Palathayi child abuse case by including two woman IPS officers. Kasaragod Superintendent of Police (SP) D Shilpa and Kannur Narcotics Bureau ASP Reshma Ramesh are the new members in the investigation team. The police decided to expand the team after the Thalassery Additional Sessions Court ordered further probe into the case. P5 T’Puram: After a direction issued by Thodupuzha DySP warning department-level action against those police officials who have to go under quarantine for suspected Covid- 19 infection kicked up a row, State Police Chief Loknath Behera on Saturday intervened withdrawing the controversial direction. Behera said senior officers should desist from actions that affected the morale of the police personnel. GREEN IMPACT Draft norms legitimise illegality: Ramesh E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi AS the chorus for scrapping the controversial draft Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) 2020 notification grows louder, former environment minister Jairam Ramesh on Saturday shot off a letter to Union minister Prakash Javadekar saying the notification “legitimises illegality”. “Environmental regulation is not an unnecessary burden but an essen- tial obligation for the health and welfare of our people and sustainable development,” he wrote in the letter, also marked to Vice-President Venkaiah Naidu. Registering his “strongest objections” to the draft EIA notification, Ramesh said, “It allows for the post facto approvals which go against the very principle of assessment and public participation prior to environment clearance and has provisions that will routinely legitimise illegality It reduces public participa. tion in all steps of the environment clearance process by lessening the notice period for public hearings and doing away with them for a large category of projects.” The proposed norms gives the Centre full powers to appoint state environment impact assessment authorities and this runs afoul of cooperative federalism, he added. The draft EIA norms were released on March 12 and the deadline for public feedback is August 11. were tested, of which 43 turned out to be positive. Earlier, 44 persons who attended a funeral in Cherkala in the first week of July had tested positive. The funeral was declared a cluster and the government had to test 522 persons linked to the funeral. The collector said those taking part in funeral or weddings without following the Covid protocol would be booked under the Kerala Epidemic Diseases Act. If convicted, they face up to two years of rigorous imprisonment and a fine of `10,000. Kasaragod police said they would register a case in con- nection with the wedding. Pilankatta ward member Abdulla Kunhi K B said it was not a big fat wedding. The ceremony held at the bride’s house at Pilankatta was attended by less than 100 people, he said. “Theirs is a big family with four houses in one compound. As many as 30 members are staying in these houses,” said Kunhi. Nine of the 30 have tested positive. Of the 15 guests, who came from the bride’s mother’s house, 12 contracted the infection. “The rest of the infected persons were among the groom’s guests,” said Kunhi, who did not attend the wedding. 1,049 - STATE RECORDS BIGGEST RECOVERY A total of 1,049 Covid patients recovered on Saturday. This is the first time that the number of recoveries has crossed the 1,000mark in the state. The previous highest was 968 reported on Friday. The total confirmed cases has crossed the 18,000 mark. ROPING IN AYUSH DOCS A CHALLENGE FOR GOVT Plan to bring AYUSH practitioners for treating positive patients at CFLTCs is going to be a challenge for the government. It turned out that respective associations were planning to approach the government with an individual charter of demands. P4 Cong vows to take fight to all Raj Bhavans RAJESH ASNANI & RICHA SHARMA @ Jaipur/New Delhi THE political crisis in Rajasthan that began as a feud between rebel Congress leader Sachin Pilot and Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot is now turning into a tussle between the CM and Governor Kalraj Mishra. While Gehlot and his loyalist MLAs continue to mount pressure on the Governor for an assembly session, Mishra has so far not given any indication that he will yield to the pressure. Angered by an unresponsive Governor, the Congress on Saturday announced that it would hold protests outside all Raj Bhavans across the country on Monday . “PCCs will hold protests in front of Raj Bhavans across the country against this naked murder of democracy and subverting institutions on Monday, the 27th of July, 2020. Join this mass movement to save our democracy & Constitution,” the party’s organisational secretary K C Venugopal tweeted. The party will also hold an online campaign, ‘Speak up for democracy on Sunday against what ,’ it called the BJP’s constant attempts to topple elected governments. Gehlot, meanwhile, held meetings with his MLAs and cabinet colleagues. Gehlot said if needed he was ready to go to the President to ensure that “BJP conspiracy” to delay a test of strength does not succeed.
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