KANNUR l Wednesday l December 16, 2020 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l city EDITION 422 womAn officers eligible for permanent commission Of the 615 woman officers considered for permanent commission, 422 were found fit by the Army Selection Board More officers under consideration However, as many as 57 of the 422 opted out of PC. Of the 193 who were found ineligible, 68 are being released with pension, a senior Army officer said. And 106 others have been given a pensionable service extension of up to 20 years. Apart from the 615, another 42 officers, currently on medical leave, are to be considered for PC at a later date ■ 10 ‘a milestone for women in services’ ■ “This is another milestone for the women in services,” a serving woman officer said. “Women at the junior level are going to rise and serve at the ranks of General in future,” she added The Supreme Court, in a landmark ruling in February, said women officers are entitled to permanent commission in the Army streams of Indian Army opened to women officers 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 Plot to confuse farmers on three laws, says Modi POLLVAULT: RESULTS TODAY WHAT WE CAN EXPECT & WHAT IT COULD MEAN Allays fears on land rights; unions write to govt rejecting proposal to amend the laws, insist on repeal; allege bid to sow disunity Express News Service @ New Delhi/Chandigarh On a day Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the ongoing agitation against the three farm sector laws was instigated by vested interests, farmers dug in their heels, claiming their support base had actually expanded. While Modi said there was a conspiracy to scare farmers about their land holding, the protesting unions alleged that the government was trying to drive a wedge between them. Speaking in Kutch (Gujarat), Modi rhetorically asked: “When dairies get into contracts for milk, do they take away even the cattle?” He sought to allay the fears of farmers, adding land rights will be protected. The prime minister emphasised that the new legislations has merely included demands of the farmers’ bodies to revloutionise the agriculture sector, adding they were advocated by opposition parties in the past as well. Later in the day farm, ers’ unions wrote to the Centre rejecting the proposal to amend to the three laws and insisting on their repeal. “We had already rejected their proposal. This evening, we wrote to them officially stating our position,” said Harinder Singh Lakhowal, general secretary of Bharatiya Kisan Union (Lakhowal). The unions also decided to observe December 20 as homage day as a mark of respect for the 20 protesters who have so far died. “This homage will be given in every village across the country on December 20. Around 20 farmers have died during protest,” said Inderjeet Singh, a farmer leader. Union minister for agriculture Narendra Singh Tomar continued to hold deliberations with a section of farmers, as he met leaders of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Kisan). “The farmers who came today support the three farm laws. They said they had been earlier misled because of the misconceptions,” Tomar told reporters. He had earlier met representatives of farmers from Uttarakhand and Haryana, who, too, pledged their support to the farm laws. Agitators harden stance Concrete proposals: Farmer leaders refused to yield, saying they will completely block the Chilla Border between Delhi and Noida on Wednesday. They said the govt consider their demands and offer concrete proposals Staying firm: “The govt is saying ‘we won’t repeal’, we are saying we will make you do it.... fight has reached a stage where we are determined to win no matter what,” said farmer leader Jagjeet Singh Dallewal Kochi: The Additional Special Sessions Court conducting the trial has asked the prosecution to file a report in two days on the release of prime witness Vipin Lal, who was made an approver in the case. As per CrPC Section 306, a person who was made approver while in judicial custody has to remain in jail until the case trial is completed. P5 E x p r e s s N e w s S e r v i c e @ Kochi THE Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed the petition filed by the state government seeking to transfer the trial in the actor abduction and sexual assault case involving actor Dileep to another court. The trial, in this case, is progressing, hence the proceedings cannot be transferred to another court, the bench held. The state had submitted that a fair trial would not be possible in the Additional Special Sessions Court, which is currently hearing the case. While upholding the Kerala High Court’s order, a three-judge bench observed the allegation of bias levelled by the state against the trial judge was unwarranted and that the state An official arranges a counting centre at Sarvodaya Vidyalaya in Nalanchira, Thiruvananthapuram, on Tuesday | B P Deepu 244 counting centres 8am Counting of votes to begin Homage day: Union leaders on Tuesday gave a nationwide call to observe Shraddhanjali Diwas on December 20 from 11 am to 1 pm to pay tribute to the farmers who lost their lives during the ongoing protests should not have levelled such an allegation against the court. If the state government has any grievances in the order passed by the trial court, it can approach the High Court. The bench expressed displeasure at the allegations levelled by the state. “You have picked up one statement of the judge to allege bias. What circumstances were created for making such statements… much depends on that,” the bench said. “You are complicating your own case and creating pressure on the judge. Let the courts function and judges do their job. As it is there is so much pressure and media hype created in this case and these allegations (of bias) will unnecessarily discourage the judge,” observed the bench. CHIEF Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s additional private secretary C M Raveendran on Tuesday approached the Kerala High Court seeking to stay the summons issued to him by the Enforcement Directorate (ED), which is probing the money laundering angle in the sensational gold smuggling case. The central probe agency has served four notices so far on Raveendran, who has been skipping the interrogation citing Covid-19 infection and post-Covid ailments. The latest such notice was issued on December 12, which asked him to appear on Thursday (December 17). Raveendran submitted that he is worried he will be detained by the ED for long hours, which he will not be able to endure as he is yet to recover fully from post-Cov- EXPRESS READ Sabarimala: Guidelines revised for devotees, officials T’Puram: In the wake of a spike in Covid cases among devotees and officials deployed on duty at Sabarimala, the state government has revised the guidelines for pilgrimage. Along with the pilgrims, officials on duty at Sabarimala too will have to compulsorily undergo RT-PCR tests from December 26. P5 Express News Service @ T’Puram CBI recreates the scenes of the double murder of Youth Congress workers Kripesh and Sarath Lal at Kalliyot in Periya, Kasaragod, on Tuesday. The two youths were hacked to death allegedly by CPM workers and leaders on February 17, 2019 | Express CBI recreates Periya murder scene in dramatic start to probe G e o r g e P o i k ay i l @ Kanhangad The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) made a dramatic start to the investigation in the Periya double murder case by recreating the crime and news channels live beaming it. The CBI team from Thiruvananthapuram, led by superintendent of police Nandakumaran Nair, reached Kalliyot at 11am and got to work. The team relied on the chargesheet filed by the State Crime Branch to recreate the murder of Youth Congress workers Kripesh, 19, and Sarath Lal P K, 24. The Left will have a definite advantage, but not to the extent witnessed in the 2015 elections. It will be a “diminished edge”. The UDF and the BJP will enhance their position in the total tally — to the extent to what the LDF lost Raveendran moves HC for stay on ED summons Journalist’s death: Driver in custody A DAY after television and online journalist S V Pradeep was killed in a hit-and-run case here, the police on Tuesday tracked down the lorry and took the man who was driving it at the time of the accident into custody No conspiracy an. gle has emerged so far. Fort Assistant Commissioner Prathapan Nair said 60-yearold driver Joy, a native of Vazhayila, was accompanied by lorry owner Mohanan when the accident happened. The two were ferrying M-sand from Vattiyoorkavu when the accident occurred. Pradeep’s family members had alleged the hit-and-run could have been planned as he had been living under threat for his online reportage. The assistant commissioner ruled out any such conspiracy “The . accident was not premeditated. All pieces of evidence collected corroborate that it was an accident and not a planned incident. The driver had stayed in a queue at the quarry to collect ● More on P4 sand. 3pm All results are expected to be in The results of grama panchayats, municipalities and corporations are expected to be out by around noon. By around 3pm, the results of block and district panchayats will also be out — V Bhaskaran, SEC E x p r e s s N e w s S e r v i c e @Kochi Actor abduction case: No transfer of trial, bias allegation baseless, says SC Report sought on bail for approver What to expect According to the chargesheet, the Youth Congress workers were returning home from a temple committee meeting when they were waylaid and attacked by eight men on Kurankara Road in Kalliyot on February 17, 2019. On Tuesday the team had eight , masked men with rods waiting on Kurankara Road. When two men, enacting as Kripesh and Sarath rode in on their motorcycle, the eight men waylaid them and attacked them. Kripesh suffered a deep cut on the skull and ran down the hill, while Sarath Lal fell near his motorcycle on the road. “We recreated the crime as narrated in the chargesheet to see if it was possible to commit the crime on the road and for the accused to escape in the said time frame,” said CBI deputy superintendent of police (DySP) T P Ananthakrishnan. When asked what was the CBI’s assessment, he said: “It is possible”. The CBI team also traced the route in the bushes through which Kripesh ran. “He ran 770 metres downhill before he collapsed and fell. We traced the route and took note of the point where his mobile phone was found,” the officer said. ● More on P5 id issues. Also, as he is unaware of the particulars of the case, he could be coerced into making untrue statements against his will, he said. He sought the court’s permission to choose a legal practitioner who can accompany and assist him during the interrogation, which he thinks is necessary under the circumstances. On November 4, the ED served its first summons on Raveendran, to which he responded by expressing his inability to appear because he was feeling unwell. He tested Covid positive on November 6. The ED issued its second notice on November 20, seeking his presence on November 27. However, he was hospitalised again on November 25, thus missing the interrogation again. He skipped the third summons issued on December 3 citing post-Covid health issues. J Prabash, political analyst and former pro-vice-chancellor, Kerala University, looks at the possibilities and implications What it could mean For LDF: The results will be a warning sign for the LDF. The voters are giving a signal that we have noticed your scandals and scams. For UDF: Earlier, whatever vote share the LDF loses will go to the UDF and vice-versa. Now, they are facing the fact that the votes have to be shared with the BJP too. The message for them is to put their house in order For BJP: The BJP always begins with a 50% deficit in Kerala as Christians and Muslims constitute about 50% of the population. So, to stay in the race, it needs to redesign the narrative to cater to the local vote base Pranab’s daughter & son in Twitter spat over memoir E x p r e s s N e w s S e r v i c e @ New Delhi Late former President Pranab Mukherjee’s son Abhijit and daughter Sharmistha, both Congress leaders, were on Tuesday locked in a Twitter spat over their dad’s memoir in which blamed party chief Sonia Gandhi and former prime minister Manmohan Singh for 2014 Lok Sabha poll rout. Days after Rupa Publications released excerpts of the fourth volume of Pranab’s The Presidential Years, Abhijit said he wanted to vet the book before it hits the stands in January . Hours later, Sharmistha told him off, asking him not to create hurdles in its publication. Meanwhile, sources in Pranab’s staff said that he had approved the final draft as well as the book’s cover, just before he was last hospitalised in August.
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