bhubaneswar l Saturday l december 05, 2020 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l late CITY EDITION Covid-19 vaccination drive after scientists’ nod: PM Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday that experts believe the coronavirus vaccine will be ready in a few weeks Healthcare workers to be given priority Pandemic a security challenge: Azad In his remarks at a virtual all-party meeting, Modi said healthcare workers involved in treating Covid-19 patients, frontline workers including police personnel and municipal staff, and old people suffering from serious conditions would be inoculated on priority. On vaccine price, the PM said public health will be accorded top priority and states will be fully involved ■ ■ Covid-like pandemics can pose a threat to the country’s internal security and policy makers should address this challenge, senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said This is the second all-party meeting by the Centre to discuss the Covid-19 situation since the outbreak of the pandemic | P7 8 vaccines At various stages of trial & their PRODUCTION assured in India: PM 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 NCPCR asks Collector, SP to appear in person with action taken report on Dec 9 A s i s h M e h ta @ Bhubaneswar Farmers during their protest against the new farm laws at Ghazipur on the Delhi-UP border on Friday | Parveen negi Farmers intensify stir, announce Bharat Bandh Ha r p r e e t B a j w a @ Chandigarh Farmer unions on Friday intensified their agitation by announcing a Bharat Bandh on Tuesday (December 8) if the Centre fails to agree to repeal three contentious farm sector reform laws that were rammed through by Parliament. Rejecting the government’s offer to suitably amend the laws to address their concerns during Thursday’s talks, the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha’s meeting at the Singhu border unanimously decided to explore other means as well to bring the Centre to its knees, including laying siege to toll plazas across the country to stop them from charging toll tax from commuters and choking all entry points to Delhi. Though a timeline for the new agitation programme is yet to be firmed up, the earlier decision on burning effigies of the Modi government and corporate leaders on Saturday will happen as scheduled. Also, the award wapsi that began on Thursday with Badal Odisha farmers extend support to the strike Foreign office pulls up Canadian envoy The foreign office on Friday summoned the Canadian High Commissioner and lodged a protest against comments by Canadian leaders and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on the farmers protests, saying it could have a damaging impact on bilateral ties | P7 Senior returning his Padma Vibhushan, would intensify on Monday they decided. In all, 51 , union leaders participated. All 32 protesting farmer unions had a joint session before the marathon meeting of the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha. Though farmers will participate in the next round of talks with the Centre on Saturday a , categorical assurance on repealing the three laws and constitutional guarantees on the minimum support price (MSP) regime alone will take the process forward, they said. Express News Service @ Bhubaneswar Farmers of Odisha have extended support to the Bharat Bandh call given by the farmer leaders at Delhi against the new agriculture laws. “We have decided to extend our support to the ongoing protest and will make the strike a success in the State if the demands are not met,” said Naba Nirman Krushak Sangathan (NNKS) convenor Akshay Kumar after attending a meeting at Singhu border in Delhi Bharatiya Kisan Union, Punjab (Lakhowal Group) general secretary Harvinder Singh Lakhowal said, “Now that farmers from across the country are with us, dharnas will be held in Karnataka, Maharashtra and elsewhere. It’s no longer an agitation restricted to Punjab farmers. We have told the government to call a special session of Parliament to repeal the three farm laws.’’ Bharatiya Kisan Union general secretary Yudhvir said, “Farmers are upset across the country We have told our state . leaders to get the farmers ready for a long battle as the government wants to test our patience.’’ Political support for the protest snowballed on Friday with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav announcing a series of agitations in solidarity Mamata spoke to . various groups of agitating farmers and announced street protests from next week in Bengal to amplify the call against the new farm laws. on Friday . Kumar said that all farmers under the banner of Samyukta Krushak Morcha will join the nationwide strike. “The Centre is yet to take a call on withdrawal of the new farm laws. If it does not accept our demands in the meeting tomorrow, our protest will intensify,” he said. Apart from asking the Centre to roll back the new farm laws, the farmers have also renewed their demand for MSP guarantee. Saffron dims pink glow in GHMC polls MVA wins 4 of 5 Council seats, BJP loses Nagpur Mumbai: The Shiv Sena-NCPCongress coalition in Maharashtra won four of the five Legislative Council seats. In a major setback, the BJP also lost its bastion Nagpur in the biennial elections to the upper house | P8 Party position TRS 55 (-44*) MIM 44 (0*) BJP 48 (+44*) Cong 2 (0*) Results declared: 149 (one result withheld) Total Divisions: 150 *Figures in brackets are gain/loss from 2016 polls Express News Service @ Hyderabad In a major setback for the ruling TRS in the keenly contested Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) polls, the BJP has emerged as the second largest party, winning 12 times seats it had won in 2016. The BJP’s stellar performance came close on the heels of TRS suffering a drubbing in its hands in the by-election to the rural assembly constituency of Dubbaka in erstwhile Medak district a few weeks ago. The GHMC results signify two aspects — the political space hitherto occupied by the Congress or the TDP is going the BJP’s way and the victories in Dubbaka and Hyderabad for BJP may see more leaders from other parties beginning to look at the saffron party with renewed interest. It is a shocker for the ruling TRS to lose one third of the seats it had won in 2016. However, with 31 ex-officio members in its kitty the Mayor and , Deputy Mayor posts are likely to go to the TRS. If it still falls short, AIMIM might chip in with the requisite numbers. TRS working president K T Rama Rao said: “The results have not come the way we expected. We had expected 20-25 seats more.” The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) on Friday issued summons to the Nayagarh Collector and SP to appear before it on December 9 in connection with the alleged kidnapping and murder of the five-year-old girl at Jadupur village in July this year. Commission Chairperson Priyank Kanoongo stated that the panel has received complaints alleging human organ trafficking. “ The Nayagarh DM (District Magistrate) and SP have been directed to appear before NCPCR in person through video-conferencing on December 9 at 12 pm,” Kanoongo told TNIE. They have been asked to be present with a detailed action taken report (ATR), copy of the FIR and all relevant documents after they were reportedly atpertaining to the matter. tacked by four to five miscreTaking cognisance of the al- ants on October 21. leged murder of the girl and po“We received police security lice inaction in the case, the on Thursday evening but will Commission had earlier asked continue to stay in our relathe Chief Secretary to submit a tive’s house till the accused are report in the connection. It had arrested,” Sahoo said. A woman personal security also taken note of the allegaofficer has been provided tions that the parents of to Saudamini and a male the girl were being threatened with dire Nayagarh PSO has been deployed consequences and had minor girl for Ashok. “Besides, five police personnel left their house out of murder have been positioned fear. outside the house where Meanwhile, on the dithe couple is currently rection of the Orissa High Court, Nayagarh police has pro- staying. The personnel will remain there 24X7,” said Nayavided security to the parents of the girl but they refused to re- garh SP Pratyush Diwakar. Sahoo said they were cooperturn to their home in Jadupur village until receiving justice ating with the Special Investifor their daughter. Ashok Sahoo gation Team (SIT) formed on and his wife Saudamini have the direction of Chief Minister been staying away from their Naveen Patnaik on November own house since over a month 27, he said. express read Pradeep Panigrahy, Abhay file fresh bail pleas Bhubaneswar: A DAY after SDJM Court here rejected the bail plea of expelled BJD leader and Gopalpur MLA Pradeep Panigrahy, his lawyer Pitambar Acharya filed a bail petition in District and Sessions Judge Court at Khurda on Friday | P3 Monetary policy RBI holds key rates, projects revival by Q3 E x p r e s s n e w s s e r v i c e @ New Delhi With inflation remaining stubbornly high, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Friday chose the predictable option of leaving interest rates unchanged for the third time in a row, but maintained its accommodative stance and improved growth forecast. The banking regulator’s six-member Monetary Policy Committee decided to keep the benchmark repo rate — at which RBI lends to commercial banks — at 4%. The reverse repo rate — at which banks lend to the central bank — was ke p t u n c h a n g e d a t 3.35%. The MPC also decided to continue with the accommodative stance “as long as necessary” — not just in the current financial year but also in the next year. Talking to reporters after the MPC meeting on Friday, RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das said inflation continues to be a sticky issue, hinting at similar monetary policy action in the next MPC meeting. Factoring in the nascent signs of economic revival, Das said RBI now expects GDP to contract only 7.5% in FY21, as against its previous projection of 9.5% slippage. It also expects the economy to clock positive growth of 0.1% in the third quarter and 0.7% in Q4. “Data available for Q3 FY21 confirms the economy is recuperating faster than anticipated,” said P10 Das. $1 mn award Global teacher with a golden heart E x p r e s s N e w s S e r v i c e @ New Delhi For a primary school teacher in rural Maharashtra, it was a million dollar moment as he was named winner of the 2020 Global Teacher Prize that had more than 12,000 contenders from over 140 nations. That Ranjitsinh Disale has a heart of gold became evident from the fact that he resolved to share a whopping 50% of the prize money Ranjitsinh Disale The team led by senior IPS officer Arun Bothra and around 10 Crime Branch officers are camping in Nayagarh since the last three days for investigation. Though the victim’s parents have been demanding a probe by the CBI, they have expressed hope after Bothra was appointed as the SIT chief. “SIT chief Arun Bothra had met us recently. We know that he has cracked sensitive cases in the past and are hopeful he will succeed in arresting the accused in our case,” said Sahoo. Sources said the SIT team has collected the post-mortem and forensics reports along with other evidences and has started examining the documents. “The team has collected some clues and has also interacted with villagers as part of the investigation,” they added. with nine other fellow finalists. Hailing from Paritewadi village in Solapur district, Disale, 32, won the $1 million prize for his efforts to promote girls’ education and help trigger a quick-response coded textbook revolution in the country . A video clip of the ceremony, capturing the moment Disale was named the winner and his beaming parents, trended on Twitter. Disale’s interventions since 2009 helped kids access books in local languages. He embeded textbooks with unique QR codes to give students access to audio poems, stories and assignments. Teachers, he said, are the real changemakers. “They always believe in giving and sharing, which is why, I will share 50% of the prize money among my fellow finalists.” Disale said. CESU in pocket, Tata bags WESCO, SOUTHCO Bhubaneswar: After taking over Central Electrical Supply Utility (CESU) in June, Tata Power Company Limited (TPCL), a subsidiary of Tata Group, has emerged as successful bidder for two more distribution utilities (discoms) - SOUTHCO and WESCO | P2 November 19 Nagrota terror attack handed over to NIA New Delhi: The NIA will investigate the November 19 Nagrota attack in which four Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorists were killed by police. Sources said the Centre decided to hand it over to NIA as it would be more suitable in the case where Pakistan’s hand is evident
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