BHUBANESWAR l TUESDAY l SEPTEMBER 15, 2020 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l LATE CITY EDITION ORACLE BEATS MICROSOFT IN BID FOR TIKTOK’S U.S. OPS ByteDance, the Chinese owner of the popular TikTok app, has chosen Oracle as its ‘trusted tech partner’ in the US DID NEW CHINESE LAW SCUTTLE MS’S BID? PARTNERSHIP, NOT OUTRIGHT SALE: WSJ Analysts say a new Chinese law that bars TikTok from transferring its technology to a foreign buyer without Beijing’s sanction, may have helped scuttle Microsoft’s bid. ByteDance had on Sunday said it won’t sell TikTok’s algorithm. However, Microsoft was keen on having a full control over the algorithm to “prevent China from using the app to snoop on Americans” ■ The deal between ByteDance and Oracle is being structured as a partnership and probably won’t be an outright sale, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing unnamed sources ■ China’s state-owned media reported on Monday that ByteDance will not sell TikTok’s American operations to Oracle | P9 Sept 20 DEADLINE TO SELL TIKTOK’S U.S. OPERATIONS TO AN AMERCIAN FIRM 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 LIFELINE FOR SMALL BIZ CENTRE ORDERS 500 BIG FIRMS TO CLEAR MSME DUES tor delayed payments to the MSME sector, shows that AFTER cracking the whip on 54,241 cases involving dues of Central and State public-sec- `15,846 crore have been filed tor enterprises, the Ministry by MSMEs in facilitation / of Micro, Small and Medium arbitration councils so far. Enterprises on Monday diOut of this, 3,910 cases rected large private firms to with dues of `715.4 crore clear their dues to small busi- have been settled while 21,462 nesses on priority . are scheduled to be heard afCiting legal provisions un- ter 15 days. Also, 9,314 applider MSME Development Act, cations have been rejected the Nitin Gadkari-led minis- while 4,764 have been settled try shot off letters with the buyer. to the heads of 500 Central public big companies seeksector firms owe a ing immediate rewhopping `2,650.63 lease of funds to the crore to MSMEs cash-starved venwhile state PSUs dors as the 75-day collectively owe lockdown tipped `1,608.92 crore. them over the edge. “Around `10,000 Many MSMEs are crore has been paid struggling to keep by C P S E s, ” t h e What the business afloat MSME ministry law says amid no demand said, while urging According to and consumers constates to clear paythe MSME serving cash in an ments pronto. Development uncertain world. The ministry now “Many MSMEs Act, 2006, dues plans to take up the are doing business to MSMEs must matter with other with big corporate be cleared within big firms through 45 days of the groups. However, social media. It reacceptance of minded corporates the payments are the goods / that they are mannot coming from buyers and users of service rendered dated to file halfyearly returns with their goods and services. These payments are the corporate affairs minisvery important for MSME try on their MSME dues. The ministry also asked operations, sustenance of jobs and other economic ac- entities having more than tivities at the grassroots lev- `500 crore turnover to come el. This will ultimately bene- on board the Trade Receivafit the entire economy,” the bles Discounting System MSME ministry said. (TReDS) to improve cash flow While the exact quantum to MSMEs. TReDS is an onof money owed to MSMEs is line platform that facilitates not readily available, the gov- financing of trade receivaernment-run MSME Samad- bles of MSMEs through mulhaan website, meant to moni- tiple financiers. S E S A S E N @ New Delhi Oppn raises slew of issues during Zero Hour LAC tension, NEET and GST compensation flagged; govt pushes its legislative business EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi THE first day of the Lok Sabha’s monsoon session saw the Opposition using Zero Hour to raise a host of issues, including students’ suicide amid the NEET exams, LAC tension and nonpayment of GST compensation to states. On the treasury side, the government introduced a number of legislations and got approval for a couple of them. Speaker Om Birla rejected adjournment motions moved by Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury and party MP K Suresh, who sought urgent discussions on the Chinese incursions in east Ladakh. While Chowdhury attempted to raise it, Birla said he could speak when the House takes up discussions on the matter. In his brief remarks, Chowdhury saw in the incursions China’s conspiracy to occupy 1,100 km of Indian land from Ladakh to Arunachal Pradesh. He sought a clear reply from Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. Nationalist Congress Party MP Supriya Sule drew attention of Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman to the wobbling econ- Monsoon session of Odisha Assembly from Sept 29 No data on migrant worker deaths during Covid lockdown, says Centre 32 LAKH MIGRANTS RETURNED TO U.P. According to the government data, over 32 lakh migrant workers returned to their hometowns in Uttar Pradesh amid the lockdown. Bihar drew about 15 lakh people, while Kerala saw nearly 3.1 lakh migrants return. About 72,000 workers returned to Tamil Nadu and 37,050 to Telangana P U S H K A R B A N A K A R @ New Delhi THE Centre on Monday told Parliament that it does not have any data on the number of migrant workers who died during the 68-day lockdown, but said about 1.04 crore workers travelled back to their hometowns during the period. In a reply to a question in the Lok Sabha, the government also said no compensation has so far been paid to the relatives of the migrant workers who lost their lives during the lockdown. Though the Centre says it does not have data on deaths of migrant workers, the Railway Protection Force (RPF) had revealed in May that at least 80 migrants died on Shramik special trains alone. Many non-governmental organisations have also put together data on migrant worker deaths during lockdown. The SaveLife Foundation, an NGO working for road safe- ty on May 31 said, 198 migrant , workers have died in road accidents. “It is shocking that the government says it does not have the data on migrant deaths. It was all over the papers. We have seen reports by independent organisations. Everyone knows there was a crisis,” said a former IIM-A professor, who wished not to be named. A senior official of SHRAM, an NGO, said, “I hope the government will look into this issue better.” Responding to a question on the status of migrant workers in Tamil Nadu, the Centre said, “India, as a nation, has responded through the Central and state governments, SHGs, RWAs, medical health professionals, sanitation workers as well as several genuine and bonafide NGOs in the nation’s fight against the unprecedented humanitarian crisis due to Covid-19 and the country-wide lockdown.” EXPRESS READ Transformer theft kills power Bhubaneswar sees a dip in infections Senior IAS officers appear before Lokayukta Jagatsinghpur: Many villages in the district are reeling under darkness due to theft of transformers while the electricity department is battling an outbreak of coronavirus among its staff. Taking advantage of the Covid19 lockdown, thieves managed to steal transformers from remote villages of Biridi, Erasama and Raghunathpur | P4 Bhubaneswar: The State Capital on Monday reported 351 new cases and two deaths in last 24 hours, taking the Covid-19 tally and death toll of the city to 16,591 and 64 respectively. The cases reported on the day is one of the lowest single-day spike reported in the city this month so far. The previous lowest spike of daily cases reported in this month was 307 on September 1 | P2 Bhubaneswar: TWO senior IAS officers - Industries secretary Hemant Sharma and Managing Director of the Odisha State Medical Corporation Limited Yamini Sarangi - appeared before the Lokayukta in connection with the alleged multi-hundred crore PPE, mask and nebuliser purchase scam and submitted their written replies | P3 omy and unemployment situation. “The biggest challenge right now in the country is the state of the economy and unemployment,” she said. Leader of the DMK in the House T R Baalu raised the issue of 12 students from rural backgrounds who had allegedly committed suicide due to the NEET exams for admission to undergraduate medical courses. “Within a month of the school exams, they had to appear for NEET. They were all bright students,” said Baalu. The Lok Sabha passed two bills — The National Commission for Homeopathy Bill, 2020 and The National Commission for Indian System of Medicine Bill, 2020 — after brief discus- MSP mechanism to stay, says govt Amid Opposition protest over introduction of agrarian legislations, the Centre on Monday said the Minimum Support Price mechanism will stay irrespective of recommen-dations of experts. The government introduced three legislations pertaining to the farm sector EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Bhubaneswar THE Monsoon session of the Odisha Assembly will begin on September 29. The eight-day-long session, which will conclude on October 7, will have no Question Hour, the Assembly Secretariat notified on Monday . The House will be closed on Gandhi Jayanti on October 2 but will transact business on October 4, a Sunday . POSITIVE OR NEGATIVE? Prime Minister Narendra Modi paying tribute to former President Pranab Mukherjee and others who passed away recently, in Parliament on Monday | PTI sions. The Opposition charged that the government was rushing with legislations without addressing concerns of stakeholders. Union health minister Harsh Vardhan rebutted it, saying the recommendations of parliamentary standing committee on the legislations have been incorporated. The BJP and the Trinamool Congress members renewed their rivalries after veteran member Saugata Roy commented on the finance minister and Union minister Prahlad Joshi demanded an apology. The remark was later expunged. The bills introduced in the Lok Sabha include a proposal to bring cooperative banks under the supervision of the RBI, with Sitharaman giving details of the P7 extent of the NPAs. Sources, however, maintained that though there would be no Question Hour, members can get replies to their unstarred questions. It is yet to be decided whether adjournment motions submitted by the Opposition members will be allowed for discussion in the House. Assembly Speaker Surjya Narayan Patro is likely to con- The integrity of the RT-PCR tests was put under the microscope as Rashtriya Loktantrik Party (RLP) convenor and Nagaur MP Hanuman Beniwal tested positive in Delhi but negative in Jaipur. “I got myself tested for COVID-19 on the Lok Sabha premises. It was positive. Afterwards, I got the corona test done in Jaipur’s SMS hospital, which showed the result as negative. Which is accurate?” he wondered on Twitter 29 MPs test +ve on Day 1 EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi CLOSE to 30 MPs and about 50 employees of the parliamentary secretariat tested Covid-19 positive on the opening day of Parliament on Monday . While 17 Lok Sabha MPs were found infected — 12 from BJP, two YRS Congress, and one each from the Shiv Sena, DMK and RLP — 12 Rajya Sabha, members tested positive — two each from BJP and Congress and one each from AIADMK, TRS, AAP and Trinamool Congress. All Covid protocols like social distancing, usage of masks and sanitisers were observed vene an all party meeting on September 26 to discuss how to carry on the business of the House during the Covid-19 pandemic. As more and more ministers and MLAs are testing Covid-19 positive, it has become a cause for worry for the Speaker and the Government to conduct the session. Since this will be the first Assembly session to be held amid on Day 1 of Parliament. While close to 200 members were in attendance in the Lok Sabha chamber, over 30 were seated in the visitors’ gallery above the main chamber. BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi took to twitter saying, “After the routine Parliament test for COVID & genome test it’s confirmed that I have tested positive for the virus.” Another MP Jamyang Tsering Namagyal wrote, “My health is fine but I’m being advised to quarantine.” Others infected include Suresh Angadi, Anant Kumar Hegde, Deepender Singh Hooda, A Navneethakrishnan, Sushil Gupta and V Lakshmikantha Rao. the Covid-19 pandemic, all safety measures will be taken to conduct the session. The Speaker said that senior legislators can take part in the proceedings through video-conferencing from their respective district headquarters. All MLAs, officers, and other staff who will be entering the Assembly during its upcoming session will have to undergo Covid-19 test. A special counter will be opened in the Assembly for the test. Odisha sees 4,198 cases in new high Khurda maintains top spot in Covid tally with 758 new cases, Cuttack follows EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE per cent and it has conducted more than 24.7 lakh tests so far. Meanwhile, 11 more patients, ODISHA recorded its highest including four from Cuttack single-day spike of 4,198 coro- and two each from Khurda and navirus positive cases and 11 Balangir, succumbed to the inmore fatalities on Monday, fection in the last 24 hours. pushing the State tally to Kandhamal, Nayagarh and 1,55,005 and death toll to 690. Mayurbhanj also reported one Of the new infections, 2,476 death each. Health officials said were in quarantine and 1,722 in eight cases, the deceased had were local contacts. With 758 comorbidities and two deaths confirmed infections, Khurda reported in Khurda were from continued to reBhubaneswar. port the highest As cases continCASE LOAD number of Covid ue to spike in the cases among the 30 Spread of the virus in State, spread of the Khurda, the worst districts. Cuttack, virus in Khurda, which reported 367 Covid-hit district with the worst Covid-hit 26,754 confirmed more cases, redistrict with 26,754 infections, remains a mained the second confirmed infeccause of concern worst-hit district, tions which is 17 followed by Puri Balangir, Sundargarh, per cent of the that recorded 310 State’s total caseJajpur, Kendrapara, cases. Rayagada, Mayurbhanj, load, remains a Ten more discause of concern. Sambalpur and tricts re por ted The district, Balasore, Nuapada, above 100 cases. which surpassed and Angul reported The daily case Ganjam in total over 100 cases count was 197 in number cases on Balangir, 195 in Ganjam reported only 44 September 1, has Sundargarh, 156 in positive cases on the day been reporting the Jajpur, 143 in Kenhighest number of drapara, 136 in Rayagada, 133 daily cases for more than two in Mayurbhanj, 130 each in weeks. More than 8,000 cases Sambalpur and Balasore, 116 have been recorded in the disin Nuapada, and 108 in Angul. trict between September 1 and Interestingly Ganjam reported 14. , only 44 positive cases on the Increasing number of cases day . in Cuttack is also turning into As many as 49,396 tests, in- a major headache for the State cluding 8,728 through RT-PCR Government as the Covid tally and 40,514 with rapid antigen of the district has crossed kits conducted during the pe- 13,000 mark making it the third riod. The case positivity rate of Covid-hit district after Khurda the State remained around 8.5 and Ganjam @ Bhubaneswar People queue up at the office of Registrar for Births and Deaths ignoring social distancing norms in Bhubaneswar on Monday | IRFANA Pvt hospitals to reserve 50 pc beds, 80 pc of ICUs for patients E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Bhubaneswar AS dedicated Covid hospitals are fast running out of beds in the face of an unrelenting surge in infections, the State Government on Monday sought to rope in private hospitals to tide over the crisis and asked them to allot half of their beds for Covid-19 patients. The Government asked private hospitals having 30 or more beds in Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Sambalpur, Berhampur and Rourkela to keep at least 50 per cent (pc) general beds and 80 pc ICU beds reserved for Covid patients. The Health and Family Welfare department has, however, made it clear that the private hospitals can not charge more than the prescribed cost of treatment in three different categories as notified earlier. As per the prescribed rate, no private hospital can charge more than `2,950, including `1,200 for bed and `1,750 for consumables per day at non-NABH and `4,750 including `3000 bed charge for general bed in NABH certified facility . For patients in ICU without ventilator support, non-NABH hospitals can charge `10,000 per day and NABH accredited hospital can charge `17,000 per day, which included `8,000 and `12,000 for consumables respectively For ventilator use, the hos. pitals can raise bill ranging between `12,000 and `18,000. The State Government has also decided to close down the temporary medical camps (TMCs), Covid Care Homes (CCHs) and P5 Covid Care Centres (CCCs), where the occupancy is nil.
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