CHENNAI THURSDAY NOVEMBER 05, 2020 `7.00 PAGES 18 LATE CITY EDITION NGT WIDENS THE AMBIT OF CRACKER POLLUTION CASES The National Green Tribunal on Wednesday issued notices to 18 states, expanding the ambit of such cases beyond the NCR NOTICES SENT TO TN, ANDHRA, TELANGANA MAY PROHIBIT CRACKERS IN SOME CITIES The green panel has sought response from Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chandigarh, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttarakhand and West Bengal. Notices were already issued to Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh ■ ■ A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel noted that Odisha and Rajasthan have already issued a notification prohibiting the sale and use of firecrackers The tribunal said it may prohibit the use of firecrackers in cities where air quality is generally beyond permissible limits Nov 7-30 DELHI, RAJASTHAN, HARYANA AND U.P. TOLD TO BAN CRACKERS IN THIS PERIOD 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 JOE BIDEN 248 TN govt to hear parents’ views on reopening schools DONALD TRUMP Electoral college votes Electoral college votes 70,320,016 votes 67,524,937 votes 214 270 TO WIN BIDEN SURGES IN TIGHT RACE Trump prematurely claims victory, wants to stop all voting, threatens to approach SC; Biden projected to win more popular votes than any president in American history; four Indian American Democrats re-elected to the House THE race for the White House between Donald Trump and his Democratic challenger Joe Biden was on the razor’s edge on Wednesday with the nervous president prematurely claiming victory demanding a halt to , all voting and threatening to go to the Supreme Court. Trump’s diatribe was tied to the understanding that most of the mailin ballots would go to Biden. “We won’t rest until every vote is counted,” Biden shot back, adding it is for the voters to decide the outcome and not the contestants. His campaign said their legal teams were on stand-by to resist Trump’s attempt to go to the court to stop tabulating the ballots. With millions of votes still to be counted, the battle had essentially boiled down to a handful of swing states. While Trump won Florida — closing his challenger’s path to an early victory — and was leading in Pennsylvania and Georgia, Biden managed to flip Arizona, a state that has supported a Democratic presidential candidate only once in the past 72 years. Biden was also leading in battleground states like Michigan and Wisconsin. Officials in Pennsylvania said they expect all votes to be counted by Friday. The Biden camp believes that will give them an edge, while the Trump STATES WAITING FOR THE VERDICT* People gather in Black Lives Matter Plaza near White House in Washington on Tuesday, on Election Day | AP campaign fears that there could be electoral malpractice during the counting of votes. Trump himself articulated the fear, calling the election “a fraud on the American public”. “This is a major fraud on our nation. We want law to be used in a proper manner. So we’ll be going to the US Supreme Court,” he said. The delay in counting the postal ballots means the final outcome may not be known for days, if not weeks. Amid the cliff-hanger, there was something to cheer about as all four Democratic IndianAmerican lawmakers — Dr Ami Bera, Pramila Jayapal, Ro Khanna and Raja Krishnamoorthi — were re-elected to House of Representatives. Also called the Samosa caucus, the informal grouping of Indian-American lawmakers could have at least one more member as physician Dr Hiral Tipirneni was leading against Republican incumbent David Schweikert from the sixth Congressional district of Arizona. Also, filmmaker Mira Nair’s son Zohran Kwame Mamdani won the election for New York State Assembly . As for the House of Representatives, Democrats appeared to extend control over it for two more years but with a shrunken majority, as at least seven incumbents lost their seats. The race for Senate control was tight though analysts expected Republicans to edge ahead. FULL COVERAGE: P11 Past midnight, Wisconsin with 10 electoral votes flipped in Biden’s favour, putting him 22 short of a clean victory Georgia 16 Electoral votes 94% votes reported Biden 2,629,877 49.6% Trump 2,581,701 48.7% 16 Electoral votes 93% votes reported Trump 2,389,263 50.3% Biden 2,303,428 48.5% Pennsylvania Nevada 20 Electoral votes 80% votes reported Trump 3,061,817 53.4% Biden 2,595,192 45.3% 6 Electoral votes 86% votes reported Biden 588,252 49.9% Trump 580,605 48.7% North Carolina Alaska 15 Electoral votes 95% votes reported Trump 2,732,120 50.1% Biden 2,655,383 48.7% KEY QUESTIONS Who all are in the race? While Donald Trump and Joe Biden are fighting presidential polls, polling has also happened for 35 Senate, 11 gubernatorial and 435 congressional seats Who is ahead in the popular vote count? Biden is. By over 1.5% Why are popular votes not the barometer of victory? Because the US president is elected by an electoral college, not the majority vote count. Trump in 2016 was declared elected as he had more electoral college votes than challenger Hillary, who won more popular votes than him How does electoral college work? Each state has a fixed number of electoral votes. The party that wins a state pockets all its electoral votes. So, the trick lies in winning states with large electoral votes. In 2016, Trump secured 304 electoral votes as against Hillary’s 227 3 Electoral votes 36% votes reported Trump 80,999 61.4% Biden 45,758 34.7% * As of 1 am. Source: Politico Michigan EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE What is the half-way mark? It’s 270 as the total electoral vote count is 538 Why is the counting getting delayed? Because mass postal ballots were allowed due to Covid. While states like Florida counted them as they arrived before election day, others chose to begin counting only after all votes had been polled. The volume of postal ballots is huge. In some states, only mail-in ballots were allowed Why is Trump hassled by postal ballots? Because most of them are Democrat leaning. The majority of in-person votes went to Trump What about the House of Representatives and Senate races? The House appears set to stay with Democrats. But its drive to capture the Senate may fall short SUSHMITHA RAMAKRISHNAN @ Chennai THE Tamil Nadu government has announced that a statewide consultation with parents will be held on Monday regarding the reopening of schools for students in classes 9-12. The government had earlier this week announced that the classes will start on November 16. The decision drew criticism from Opposition parties, who said the government was putting the lives of students and their family members at risk in the midst of a pandemic. However, teachers and school administrators felt that some kind of direct learning was required for students. In a statement on Wednesday, the government said the principals of government, aided and private schools should hold a consultation with parents and members of the parent-teacher associations about the feasibility of reopening schools for classes 9-12. The government has also sought opinions from private school managements. Stakeholders can assemble in their respective schools at 10 am on Monday (November 9) to submit their views on the scheduled reopening. However, all schools should ensure that social distancing and safety protocols are followed during the consultation. Those who cannot attend the consultation in person can send their feedback via letter, the statement said. The government said that USE TEMPLE LANDS Outrage as Arnab arrested in 2018 ONLY FOR RELIGIOUS case, remanded in 14-day custody PURPOSES: HC EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE H A R I S H M U R A L I @ Chennai SWIGGY WILL SOON DELIVER STREET FOOD TO HOMES IN CHENNAI Chennai Corporation, in association with Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, National Urban Livelihood Mission and Swiggy, is roping in 50 street food vendors across the city, and they will begin homedeliveries in 2 weeks | P3 THE Madras High Court on Wednesday ordered that the State government cannot use temple lands for any purposes other than holding religious functions. The court also directed the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) Department to identify and retrieve encroached temple lands, and have an officer in-charge to file periodical reports. The court was hearing a batch of pleas filed by several petitioners over the encroachment of lands belonging to Sakthi Muthamman Temple near Neelankarai and Kottai Mariamman Temple in Salem. Justice R Mahadevan observed that the properties of religious institutions, particularly temples, have to be properly maintained so as to @ Mumbai Kottai Mariamman Temple in Salem derive more income which could be spent on reclaiming disputed lands. “However, the HR&CE Department, the custodian of the temple properties, has not taken any steps to protect the interest of the temples, though the subject temples fall under its purview. Such callous attitude on its part cannot be countenanced.” The court also directed the Fisheries Department, which has raised a construction on the temple land near Neelankarai, to enter into an agreement with the P4 HR&CE Department. THE Maharashtra Police on Wednesday arrested Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami for allegedly abetting the suicide of a 53-year-old interior designer, Anvay Naik, in Raigad in 2018. Goswami was produced before the magistrate court in Alibaug where he alleged the police physically assaulted him. Following this, the court ordered a medical examination on him at the civil hospital. The police sought Goswami’s custody for 14 days, but the court held that custodial interrogation was not required. Goswami, along with two other accused, was remanded in judicial custody till November 18. Earlier, there was high drama at the Goswami’s residence in Mumbai when Raigad police turned up to arrest him. The journalist fired a volley of questions at the police team and reportedly argued with Arnab Goswami arrives in a police van to be produced in Alibaug court | PTI them. Following this, he was forcibly taken into custody . Later, the Mumbai police also registered an FIR against Arnab, his wife and son on charges of obstructing and intimidating a police officer on duty . According to police, the arrest is in response to a complaint by Naik’s wife Akshata that her husband committed suicide because he was not paid for the work done for Republic TV studio. According to the complaint, Naik carried out interior design work for Republic TV’s studio in Mumbai for `5.40 crore. However, the money was not allegedly paid. The arrest evoked sharp criticism from journalists and political circles. Home minister Amit Shah tweeted, “Congress and its allies have shamed democracy once again. Blatant misuse of state power against Republic TV and Arnab Goswami is an attack on individual freedom and the fourth pillar of democracy It reminds us of . the Emergency This attack on . the free press must be and P9 WILL BE OPPOSED.” EXTREMELY DISTRESSING: EDITORS’ GUILD The Editors Guild of India condemned the arrest, calling it “extremely distressing”. It also urged Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to ensure that Goswami is treated fairly and state power is not used against critical reporting by the media MAINTENANCE SC closes erring spouses’ escape route to bypass paying alimony K A N U S A R D A @ New Delhi IN a big relief to women, the Supreme Court has issued detailed guidelines tightening the rules regarding maintenance in matrimonial cases. Now, both spouses will have to disclose their income and assets from the date the maintenance application is filed. Also, those who fail to pay maintenance could be arrested and jailed. “Maintenance laws have been enacted as a measure of social justice to provide recourse to dependant wives and children for their financial support, so as to prevent them from falling into destitution and vagrancy,” the judgment read. A bench of justices Indu Malhotra and Subash Reddy also laid down several criteria that must be considered while calculating the quantum of maintenance. The court had taken up the issue while hearing a case where a plea for maintenance filed by a woman had remained pending for more than seven years in various courts, while the husband had stopped paying even interim maintenance for the wife and child. Guidelines stated that detailed affidavits disclosing all sources of income, assets and liabilities must be filed by both parties - the claimant must file all details along with the application for maintenance, while the respondent must file their details within four weeks. The Delhi High Court is already implementing these set of measures as and when the mainte- nance petition is filed. The court also took note of that in many cases, husbands refuse to pay alimony amount by disposing of assets and claiming reduced income. “If false statements and misrepresentations are made, the Court may consider initiation of perjury proceedings and for contempt of Court,” said the CONTINUED ON: P9 bench. CM meets officials over feedback plan The announcement to hold consultations with all stakeholders on reopening schools was made after the Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami held a meeting with top officials on Wednesday. Schools and other educational institutions have been shut in Tamil Nadu since March the decision to reopen schools on November 16 was taken based on suggestions received from teachers who said that completing the curriculum in the remote learning mode was hard and likely to get harder during the holiday season. With festivals, including Deepavali, Christmas and New Year, lined up in the next couple of months, finishing this academic year’s portion will be increasingly difficult, the government, citing the teachers’ suggestions, added. However, Prince Gajendra Babu, general secretary State , Platform for Common School System said the festival season increases the chance of the virus spreading more rapidly. “Social distancing is sparsely maintained by shoppers durP2 ing festival seasons.” HATHRAS CASE SIT report raps police for midnight cremation N A M I TA B A J PA I @ Lucknow THE Special Investigation Team (SIT) set up by the Uttar Pradesh government to probe the Hathras rape-murder case has submitted its findings. In its report submitted to the state government, the three-member SIT headed by Bhagwan Swaroop, principal secretary (home), questioned the rush by the district police to cremate the victim’s body at midnight. The SIT has also suggested solutions to manage such crises in future. According to sources, a few more heads are likely to roll in the police department. On the basis of SIT’s preliminary findings, the state government had earlier suspended five cops including the then Hathras SP Vikrant Vir for ‘poor’ handling of the case. The SIT, also comprising DIG Chandra Prakash and PAC commandant Poonam, was set up on September 30 and was initially given a week’s time to probe and give a report. However, the ambit of investigation was expanded and the team was given two extensions of 10 days each. The team had been staying in Boolgarhi village for the past month and recorded the statements of the victim’s family local cops, the accused , and their families as well. The CBI has taken over the case and is investigating it under the supervision of the Allahabad High Court as directed by the Supreme Court.
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