BHUBANESWAR l THURSDAY l SEPTEMBER 17, 2020 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l JEYPORE EDITION RUSSIA INKS DEAL ON VACCINE DOSES WITH DR REDDY’S LABS Russia’s sovereign wealth fund RDIF, which is leading the vaccine project, will supply 10 crore doses to Dr Reddy’s REGULATORY APPROVAL AWAITED ALL AMERICANS TO GET FREE VACCINE SHOT Deliveries could begin in late 2020 subject to completion of successful trials and registration of the vaccine by regulatory authorities, according to a joint statement by RDIF and Dr Reddy’s. “Phase I and II clinical trials have shown promising results. We will be conducting Phase III trials in India,” said G V Prasad, co-chairman and MD, Dr Reddy’s Labs | P7 ■ ■ ■ Meanwhile, the US outlined a sweeping plan on Wednesday to make vaccines for Covid-19 available for free to all Americans The Pentagon is involved with the distribution of vaccines, but civilian health workers will be the ones giving shots Vaccines to be shipped within 24 hrs of FDA’s emergency nod | P9 40,000 NUMBER OF VOLUNTEERS UNDERGOING PHASE III TRIALS IN RUSSIA 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 CM asks DGP to step up enforcement E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Bhubaneswar AS coronavirus caseload shows no signs of relenting in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack where healthcare response and infrastructure by the municipal corporations has been found wanting, the Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday directed the State Police to step up enforcement activities in the Twin City so that Covid-19 protocols are followed and numbers remain under control. Reviewing the Covid situation with senior officers and district collectors through video conference, the Chief Minister said, “As per the feedback about enforcement activities throughout the State, strict adherence of Covid protocol in BhubaneswarCuttack Commissionerate area is not encouraging.” He directed the DGP to do the needful to bring a sense of discipline among people violating the Covid guidelines. According to available information, Twin City police prosecuted over 9,900 persons between September 11 and 15 for violation of Covid guidelines, sealed 12 shops and collected over `32 lakh as penalty from them. Since April, Commissionerate Police has prosecuted 1.8 lakh persons and collected `2.5 crore as penalty from them. With all economic activities resumed, there has been a rise in violations. During the review, Naveen appreciated the efforts of health functionaries and Covid warriors and expressed satisfaction over the rate of recovery of patients from the deadly disease. More than 1.25 lakh affected people have recovered from Covid so far and around 1 lakh recovered in the last five weeks. With activities becoming normal in many sectors after lifting of restrictions, the Chief Minister directed the Collectors to scale up wage employment under MGNREGS and other live- lihood activities in rural areas to boost the economy. The Collectors were asked to ensure that the special package announced by the State Government for agriculture and allied sectors are properly implemented so that the benefits reach the beneficiaries. He said the interventions earlier announced by him as Covid livelihood package in fisheries, animal husbandry, horticulture, soil conservation, forestry and agriculture sector should be followed up as a top priority. Emphasising on the need for pumping more funds to rural households, the Chief Minister directed officials concerned to support MSME and other industrial activities to reach preCovid level. As the economic slowdown reflected in the first quarter of this fiscal with a revenue shortfall of over 23 per cent, he said people must not be allowed to be affected by this. As per the feedback about enforcement activities throughout the State, strict adherence of Covid protocol in Bhubaneswar-Cuttack Commissionerate area is not encouraging Naveen Patnaik, Chief Minister 15 figure in Delhi communal riots plot chargesheet EXPRESS READ Strong presence of ISIS in southern states: MHA New Delhi: The National Investigation Agency has found strong presence of the Islamic State in the southern states, the government told the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday. Union Minister of Home Affairs for State G Kishan Reddy said all five Southern states feature in the list Union Minister Nitin Gadkari tests positive for Covid-19 Police claim the accused used a WhatsApp group to instigate violence in Jafrabad New Delhi: Union minister Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday tested positive for Covid-19. Gadkari tweeted that he consulted doctor on Tuesday as he was feeling weak. During the medical checkup, his test returned positive INSIDE GOVT DRAWS OPPN IRE ON TWIN CITY RESTRICTION FOR COVID PATIENTS I P2 Andhra govt to move SC against HC’s media gag YSRC PARTY MEMBER RAISES ISSUE IN LOK SABHA The high court’s order to gag media was raised in Parliament, too. Raising the issue in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday, Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party MP Mithun Reddy urged the Centre to direct the Central Bureau of Investigation to investigate the Amaravati land scam. Referring to the high court’s gag order, Mithun Reddy said all this is just because the former advocate general is there and the kith and kin of a judge are there. Law must be the same for all — from the Prime Minister to the common man — he added EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Vijayawada THE Andhra Pradesh government on Wednesday decided to move the Supreme Court against the High Court’s interim orders staying further probe in a case registered against former advocate general Dammalapati Srinivas and 12 others in the Amaravati land scam and gagging the media from reporting on contents of the FIR against the accused. The High Court had on Tuesday issued the interim orders on an application filed by Dammalapati Srinivas, hours after the State Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) filed a case against him and 12 others for alleged insider trading in Amaravati under the Prevention of Corruption Act and sections of the IPC. Terming the High Court orders unfortunate, unusual, unprecedented and surprising, Sajjala Ramakrishna Reddy, advisor to the State government (public affairs), said it gives the impression that the law is one for the influential and another for the common man. “We will definitely go to the Supreme Court. If we have to go by the High Court orders, none will be able to speak on Amaravati scam. Gagging the media, execu- tive, legislature and investigation agencies... this is a serious issue. People, intellectuals and legal experts must speak up,” he said. “It is understandable if the high court questions in a case where a person’s liberty is suppressed or innocent people are deprived of their rights or if the vulnerable are oppressed. How could the media be gagged? It seems like an over-reaction. It appears Dammalapati’s advocate Mukul Rohatgi argued that his client and daughters of a Supreme Court judge are named... If they had done something, shouldn’t such deeds be questioned?” Sajjala Ramakrishna Reddy asked. Chennai likely to be home to Apple’s 2nd largest contract manufacturer ODISHA DIGEST MLAs to undergo test ahead of Monsoon session BINITA JAISWAL @ Chennai AFTER Foxconn, Tamil Nadu is all set to attract Apple’s second largest contract manufacturer for iPhone, Pegatron. According to industry sources, the Taiwanese electronics manufacturing company is in talks with the state government to set up a manufacturing facility here. “We want to attract all major electronics manufacturing companies. Talks are on with different companies, including Pegatron. However, it is too early to say anything on it right now,” N Muruganandam, Industry Secretary, Tamil Nadu, told TNIE. Experts pointed out that it will be a winwin deal for Pegatron. Apart from benefits such as subsidy on land lease and capital, the company will have a support ecosystem and apt infrastructure as Foxconn already has a factory at Sriperumbudur near Chennai. The state government’s incentives will be in addition to the ones offered by the Centre, sources said. Pegatron could not be reached for comments. CMC LAPSES AIDING CORONA SPREAD IN MILLENNIUM CITY! CM Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday expressed displeasure over the blatant violations of Covid-19 norms in Cuttack, which is witnessing a rapid spread of the coronavirus infection. But, are the citizens only to blame? The incompetence of the CMC in performing its basic duties in keeping the people informed and monitoring infected persons is leading to a serious situation in the Millennium city | P2 es were examined and approximately 75 electronic devices THE Delhi Police on Wednes- seized as part of the investigad ay f i l e d a vo l u m i n o u s tion,” the police said. chargesheet in a local court This is the first chargesheet against 15 accused for their al- on the larger conspiracy beleged role in the larger conspir- hind the riots. The case was acy in the North East Delhi ri- handled by the Special Cell of ots in February last that left the police. over 50 people dead. Bunched According to sources, Tahir in 11 volumes, the chargesheet Hussain has been named the runs into 17,000 pages. key conspirator. All 15, the The 15 accused named chargesheet alleges, were in the chargesheet are guiding their foot soldiers on the violence in former Aam Aadmi the area. It accused Party MLA Tahir Hussain, Abdul Khalid them of using a WhatsApp group on the antiSaifi, Isharat Jahan, CAA protests to instiMeeran Haider, Gullisha, Safoora Zargar, HC: Go to trial gate violence in the Shifa Ur Rehman, court for bail Jafarabad-Seelampur Asif Iqbal Tanha, area. The Delhi High Shadab Ahmed, TaslIn all, 751 first inforCourt asked eem Ahmed, Saleem mation reports (FIRs) arrested Jamia Malik, Mohamaad Salwere filed in connecMillia Islamia eem Khan, Athar tion with the riots. student Asif Khan and Pinjra Tod “Of the total FIRs, 59 fo u n d e r m e m b e r s Iqbal Tanha, who were assigned to the Natasha Narwal and is among the 15 SIT constituted in the people Devangana Kalita. Crime Branch, 691 chargesheeted They are part of the were investigated by on Wednesday in 21 who are already unthe district police, and the Delhi riots der arrest under the one case registered on case, to Unlawful Activities March 6 to investigate approach the (Preventions) Act the larger conspiracy trial court (UAPA) and various behind the riots was for bail sections of Indian Peassigned to the Special nal Code such as crimCell,” the police said. inal conspiracy, attempt to As part of the probe, 12 pismurder, sedition, promoting tols, 121 empty cartridges, 92 enmity, rioting and causing live cartridges, 61 glass bottles filled with noxious chemicals damage to public property . The six others, including and an assortment of sharpUmar Khalid, Sharjeel Imam, edged weapons have been Parvez Ahmad and Faizan, are seized so far by the police. In the clash that broke out in expected to figure in a supplementary chargesheet in the the last week of February, at coming days. least 53 people died and 583 oth“It took 195 days to complete ers were injured. Also, properthe first phase of investigation. ties were widely damaged in During this period, 747 witness- arson attacks during the riots. G AYAT H R I M A N I @ New Delhi Bhubaneswar: Ahead of the Monsoon session of the State Assembly scheduled to commence from September 29, all legislators along with their PSOs and drivers will have to undergo Covid-19 test at a special camp on the campus of the Odisha Legislative Assembly (OLA). P2 Blatant safety rule breach results in record case rise ART IN TIMES OF CORONA Artists paint street walls with graffiti to spread awareness on Covid safety measures in Bhubaneswar on wednesday | BISWANATH SWAIN BMC to reassess holding tax of 40k properties in 3 zones E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Bhubaneswar THE Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has begun work on reassessment of holding tax of around 40,000 commercial and residential properties in all three zones of the Capital city as per the revised benchmark value of their land. In an office order issued recently the , civic body asked the Zonal Deputy Commissioners (ZDCs) of South-East, South-West and North Zones in the city to complete revision of all the non-assessed properties within 15 days. The reassessment will be done retrospectively with effect from April 1, 2019. After completion of the reassessment process, the ZDCs will collect 50 per cent of revised assessment amount to be paid towards any holding from the period 2019-20 to 2020-21. The civic body, however, will allow proprietors to pay the amount towards holding/property tax in quarterly or half-yearly installment if one is not able to make the payment at one go due to the pandemic situation. An official from the corporation said the 15 days deadline to complete reassessment may also be extended as the Covid-19 crisis is affecting work. The BMC had increased the holding tax after revision of benchmark value of land cost in the Capital by the General Administration department. The department had revised the benchmark value of different mouzas in July last year with effect from February 18, 2019. Accordingly the Municipal Corpora, tion, in its office order issued on October 1, had announced to take 0.5 per cent of the land cost of the revised benchmark value for calculation of annual value of the building for assessment of the new holding/property tax. Jagatsinghpur: Even as violation of Covid guidelines continues blatantly across the district, Jagatsinghpur on Wednesday recorded it biggest single-day spike of 188 positive cases.Though the situation is alarming in the district which has so far reported 3,370 positive cases, people continue to disregard the safety norms with crowded marketplaces and Government offices becoming a common sight. P4 Curbs eased, flight ops pick up at BPIA A S I S H M E H TA @ Bhubaneswar THE countrywide surge in coronavirus notwithstanding, people are shedding their fear and beginning to take the flights in greater numbers. Flight operations in the State are witnessing a steady rise after the easing of restrictions and moving closer to the prepandemic period, the Biju Patnaik International Airport (BPIA) sources said. Domestic flights had been grounded across the country from March 25 and the services were resumed after a two-month long gap. At least eight to 10 domestic flights started operating at BPIA from May 25. BPIA sources said after August 15, the domestic operations picked up pace and about 16 flights started operating from the airport. “On Wednesday 20 flights arrived , while 22 departed,” they said. A senior airport official said, the number of outgoing passengers are more than the arrivals. “In the last 15 days, on an average about 2,400 to 3,000 passengers have departed from BPIA while 1,500 to 1,700 passengers have arrived,” he said. Sources said on Tuesday 18 flights with 2,450 passengers departed from BPIA and 1,700 passengers arrived here in 19 flights. Before the coronavirus pandemic, at least 47 flights were operating daily at BPIA. The airport was witnessing a footfall of 11,000 passengers on an average every day but now it has been reduced to about 4,000. Airport director VV Rao said the number of flights are increasing continuously as the footfalls are rising. “From September 21 onwards, 26 flights will operate on an average every day Rao said. ,” As of now, flights are operating daily to cities like Bengaluru, Hyderabad, New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai among others. A twice-aweek flight to Surat has also started from September 9. The airport director said that they are giving utmost priority to safety of passengers and staff. “The Central Warehousing Corporation has been given the responsibility to carry out sanitisation on the airport premises on a regular basis. All Covid-19 regulations and restrictions are strictly adhered to,” Rao said. Meanwhile, sources said, several airlines have altogether applied for 60 slots for operating at BPIA from the upcoming winter schedule starting October 25. A senior BPIA official though said many airlines apply for the slots but do not utilize all of them.
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