tiruchy l thursday l december 03, 2020 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l late city EDITION India invites Boris Johnson as 2021 Republic day chief guest Prime Minister Narendra Modi reportedly extended the invite to the UK premier during a telephonic conversation on Nov 27 Can’t confirm, says British High Commission However, a British High Commission spokesperson said that the mission cannot confirm or deny the news. “We can’t confirm one way or the other. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is keen to visit India as soon as possible,” the official said. Modi is likely to travel to London next year for the G-7 summit. An invitation for the same was extended to him by Johnson ■ 2020 UK foreign secy may also visit India ■ Acting British High Commissioner to India Jan Thompson had recently said Johnson and British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab would make an in-person visit to India in the next few months “Had an excellent discussion with my friend @BorisJohnson on roadmap for India-UK ties in next decade,” Modi tweeted on Nov 27 Republic day chief guest was Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro 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 Shah to meet Amarinder before fresh talks today Govt to offer new proposal; unions seek special Parliament session E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi The Union government is likely to come up with a fresh proposal to resolve the current stalemate during talks with farmer unions on Thursday, even as the agitators, while claiming that more people will join their protest, demanded a special session of Parliament to repeal three contentious farm sector reform laws. The decision to make a revised proposal was taken at a meeting Union home minister Amit Shah had with colleagues Narendra Singh Tomar and Piyush Goyal at his residence on Wednesday, a day after the government’s talks with farmers ended inconclusively . The government is keen on resolving the issue quickly, sources said. Ahead of the talks, Shah is expected to meet Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday morning to discuss the way forward, said sources. For his part, agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar again appealed to the farmers to end their protests. “I appeal to the farmers to end their protests and arrive at a solution Transporters’ turn to threaten strike The All India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC) has called for a strike in support of the agitating farmers. “Starting December 8, we will halt the movement of supplies in entire North India including Delhi, J&K, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan,” it said through discussions. Also, people of Delhi have to show patience. The government understands that they are facing difficulties,” he said. As for the farmers, they kept up their belligerence, warning the Centre against attempting to sow discord among their ranks. Contrary to the narrative being built by the government, their campaign was not limited to farmers from Punjab, they sought to emphasise. Labelling it as a movement of farmers from across the country the union leaders said , Thursday’s meeting with Tomar and Goyal would have wider representation from their side. “The government tried to show this is just a movement of farmers from Punjab.... We have also decided that farmer leaders from all over the country should participate in the talks,” said Darshan Pal, president of the Krantikari Kisan Union. He also demanded that the government call a special session of Parliament to repeal the three farm sector laws. Protesting farmers also announced that on Saturday they , will burn effigies of the Modi government and those of corporate biggies like Mukesh Ambani and Gautam Adani. “We’ll burn effigies in every district of Maharashtra on Thursday and in Gujarat on Saturday. Thursday is the last chance for the government to take a decision to repeal the laws, otherwise this movement will become huge and the government will fall,” warned Pratibha Shinde of the Lok Sangharsh Morcha. Earlier, leaders of 32 farmer unions met at Delhi’s Singhu border to draw up a list of sticking points in writing on the three laws, as requested by the government. The list will be presented to the government on Thursday . Ahead of the landfall cyclone Burevi is expected to make today, heavy wind and rough waves lashing the Rameswaram coast on Wednesday | ponmalar TN battle-ready as Burevi inches closer E X P R E SS N E WS S E RV I C E @ Chennai/Rameswaram/T’puram The swaying trees, choppy sea, and an inclement weather seemed to herald the arrival of cyclone Burevi, expected to make a landfall between Pamban and Kanniyakumari on Thursday. While Minister for Revenue, Disaster Management and Information Technology Cyclone burevi Expected to make a landfall on Thursday noon Lays centred around 140-km east of Trincomalee in Sri Lanka (nearly 550-km east-northeast of Kanniyakumari) Vaccination next week in UK, Russia @ New Delhi The UK on Wednesday became the first country in the West to approve a Covid-19 vaccine, leapfrogging over the US and Europe to grant emergency use authorisation to a jab developed jointly by US pharma major Pfizer and German firm BioNTech. Vaccination is set to begin early next week. Hours later, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered universal vaccination with the homegrown Sputnik V. “Let’s agree on this — you will not report to me next week, but you will start mass vaccination,” Putin reportedly told Deputy Prime Minister Tatiana Golikova. UK’s approval came just 23 days after Pfizer released the first data from its phase 3 trial. While it showed 95% efficacy against Covid, the sticking point was the need to store it at -700C. The UK has so far bought 40 million doses of the vaccine, enough to inoculate 20 million or about 30% of the population, as two shots per person are needed to develop immunity . The World Health Organisation (WHO), too, is examining Pfizer’s data. A WHO emergency use listing would allow countries to authorise it for national emergency use and open the door to its international supply . Kerala govt bars young Eligible for 135 days’ respite, Sasikala women in Sabarimala applies for early release from prison E X P R E SS N E WS S E RV I C E M a n o j Vi s w a n at h a n @ Kochi TWO years after it allowed two young women to visit the Sabarimala Ayyappa temple following a Supreme Court verdict, the CPM-led Kerala government and the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB) seem to have changed their stance on women’s entry to the hill shrine. The portal launched by the TDB in association with the Kerala Police for online services, like virtual queue for darshan, says that “females and other gender (trans) less than 50 years and above 65 years won’t be allowed.” The state government had earlier said children below 10 years and those above 65 years won’t be permitted due to Covid restrictions. TDB, which manages the temple, had argued before the five-member constitution bench of the Supreme Court in February 2019 it was against discriminating anyone based on their biological attributes. The government had also opposed the review petitions @ Chennai/Bengaluru filed against the September 28, 2018 verdict that allowed women’s entry at the temple. Hindu Aikya Vedi, which had launched a fierce protest against entry of young womens in the temple, termed the move a political gimmick in view of the upcoming local body and Assembly polls. However, the TDP chose to distance itself from the new decision saying the portal is managed by the police. The new guidelines evoked angry response from activists. “This exposes the double stand of the Left government,” said Bindhu Ammini, one of the two women who managed to enter the temple in the dead of the night on January 2, 2019 with police escort. JUST a fortnight after her relatives paid `10 crore fine in a city civil court, VK Sasikala, former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa’s close aide, has now reportedly sought remission from the prison. She was expected to be released on January 27, 2021 after depositing the fine, said sources, adding that she has now ap- clone Burevi. Centre will provide all possible support to TN. I pray for the safety of those living in the areas affected. With the cyclone inching towards Tamil Nadu’s southern coast, Udhayakumar expressed confidence in the measures put in place to mitigate the nature’s possible fury. Addressing reporters at Madurai, the minister said that the State disaster 85-90 kmph management authorities were on a continuing vigil. “Officials are monitoring the waterbodies in Kanniyakumari, Tirunelveli, Tenkasi, T hoothukudi, Ramanathapuram, and Sivaganga districts round-the-clock,” he said, adding that Palaniswami’s instructions on releasing excess water from reservoirs would be strictly followed. Likely wind speed of the cyclone before weakening Expected to reduce into deep depression upon entering Kerala #IMD bulletin immunity race E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e It’s siesta time for a farmer under a tractor-trolley at the Ghazipur on the Delhi-UP border on Wednesday | PTI RB Udhayakumar landed in Ramanathapuram on Wednesday to assess the preparedness, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called up Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, assuring support to the State. Modi later tweeted: Had a telephone conversation with Tamil Nadu CM. We discussed the conditions prevailing in parts of the State due to Cy- plied for an early release. As per prison norms, a convict is eligible for three days of remission for every month in jail on grounds of good conduct. So far, Sasikala has completed 43 months, making her eligible for a reduction of 135 days in prison. According to sources, Sasikala’s plea for remission was sent to the prison authorities in Bengaluru. “The letter has been forwarded to higher offi- cials,” said sources. Sasikala, her sister-in-law Ilavarasi, and nephew Sudhakaran, had surrendered before the Bengaluru court on February 15, 2017 after the Supreme Court restored a trial court’s judgment in a disproportionate assets case. The trio, sentenced to four years in jail, was lodged at the Bengaluru Central Prison at Parappana Agrahara since then. P5 Selective amnesia on universal shots? S u m i S u k a n ya D u tta @ New Delhi The Union government’s announcement on Tuesday that the entire population will not be given the Covid-19 shot is a major deviation from its earlier stance, as in one of the first meetings on the vaccination chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in June, it had clearly stated “that vaccination must be affordable and universal — no person should be left behind.” It also goes against the declared objective of most developed countries that have already announced universal vaccination. While the US, Australia and European Union have said they will provide free vaccination to all, some other countries such as the UK and Canada have prebooked vaccine doses in excess of their population. Following the meeting chaired by Modi on June 30, the government had issued a statement that mentioned four guiding principles that would form the foundation of the national effort of Covid-19 immunisation. “First, that vulnerable groups should be identified and prioritized for early vaccination, for example doctors, nurses, healthcare workers, non-medical frontline corona warriors, and vulnerable people among the general population..,” it said. Continued on: P7 e x p r e ss r e a d Why can’t roads zigzag to save trees, asks SC New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday asked why trees need to be cut to make way for roads. A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde said, “Why do roads have to be laid in a straight line? Keep the roads zigzag.” US court blocks two H-1B regulations by Trump In a relief to thousands of Indian professionals, a US court has blocked two H-1B regulations proposed by the Trump administration to restrict the ability of American companies to hire foreign employees | P9 behind bars fmr hc judge cs karnan arrested The CCB on Wednesday held him on charges of insulting a woman’s modesty | read on: P4 booster soup Rasam goes ‘viral’ in America, thanks to this TN chef SOWMYA MA N I @ Ariyalur Arun Rajadurai AT a time when the entire world is looking up to the US for a “medical miracle” to contain Covid, those in New York, New Jersey and Princeton are , betting on a South Indian staple to beat the virus — the humble rasam. Behind the “viral trend”, obviously is a chef from , Tamil Nadu. It was on a mundane day, in the middle of the lockdown in US, that this idea struck 35-yearold Arun Rajadurai. Most of the ingredients that go into making rasam — turmeric, ginger, and garlic — are immunityboosters. It could help those testing positive for Covid. Arun used to provide food to Covid patients in three hospitals. He thought of adding it as a complimentary dish. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive, and the demand grew. Rasam, the “immunity boosting soup”, became indispensable from the menu of the hotel for which Arun worked, Anjappar Princeton. It was a bestseller. Such was its popularity that it was introduced in the restaurant’s New York, New Jersey and Canada branches. Around 500-600 cups of rasam are being sold daily, he says. “I was experimenting at home when I made this. We never thought it would be such a hit.” Hailing from Meensurutti near Jayankondam in Ariyalur, Arun moved to New Jersey five years ago. He studied catering at IHM Tiruchy. He was also awarded as the Best South East Asian Chef in 2018.
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