CHENNAI MONDAY FEBRUARY 01, 2021 `7.00 PAGES 28 VELLORE EDITION 1 IN EVERY 4 INDIANS EXPOSED TO CORONAVIRUS: SEROSURVEY 25% of the population has shown evidence of past infection of Covid19, the third national serosurvey done by ICMR has revealed CITIES CLOSE TO ACHIEVING HERD IMMUNITY? The survey estimates India’s actual Covid-19 infection size at 30 crore though the number of confirmed cases stands at just over 1 crore. “The figures are much higher in many cities, strengthening the epidemiological theory that some cities may be approaching herd immunity as evident in the falling daily numbers of new cases,” an official told TNIE | P7 37,44,334 EPIDEMIC TO WEAKEN AT 70% EXPOSURE The serosurvey carried out in Dec and Jan tested blood samples of 400 randomly selected persons from 70 districts across 22 states ■ Scientists and researchers in many countries have estimated that the coronavirus epidemic will slow down rapidly when 60-70% of the population in an area gets exposed to the virus and recovers ■ VACCINATED AGAINST COVID AS ON SUNDAY, ACCORDING TO UNION HEALTH MINISTRY 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 Committed to PM’s dignity, kisan’s self-respect: Tikait WOULD FM TICK THESE CHECKBOXES TODAY? No radical change in income tax slabs, but expect some tax breaks for the salaried class Modi says country saddened by insult to the Tricolour at Red Fort EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi Farmers raise slogans during their ongoing protest against the new farm laws, at the Singhu border, in Delhi on Sunday | SHEKHAR YADAV Another senior journalist booked by UP Police Suspension of internet undemocratic: Morcha The UP Police lodged an FIR against The Wire’s editor Siddharth Varadarajan who had tweeted the story of the family of Navreet Singh, a protester who died on Republic Day. The family disputed the police claim that he died after his tractor rammed a barricade The morcha condemned the arrests of journalists, and the suspension of internet services at protest sites. “It (govt) is also fearful of the coordinated work of the farmers’ unions across different protest sites... This is undemocratic and illegal,” it said in a statement A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi said his government was just a phone call away to talk to the farmers’ unions, the Tikait brothers said they will honour Modi’s dignity while also being committed to protecting their self-respect. Bharatiya Kisan Union leaders Naresh and Rakesh Tikait said they were open to talks to find a middle path, but their definition of a middle ground was different from what the Centre has in mind. “Talks are necessary A solution should be . found. These farmers have been protesting for over two months now.... The middle path could be that the Centre assures farm- ers it won’t implement the three laws during its tenure. We will also try convincing the farmers,” Naresh said. As for Rakesh Tikait, he said farmers would not succumb to pressure but they don’t want the government or Parliament to ‘bow down to them’ either, adding they respect Modi’s dignity Rakesh demanded the re. lease of farmer leaders to prepare a conducive environment for talks. While the Tikaits are part of the Samyukta Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of farmers’ unions, their position was more nuanced than the blunt statements of the morcha so far. The morcha on Sunday formed a committee to trace those who went missing after EXPRESS READ Sasikala walks out of hospital, boards Jaya’s car with AIADMK flag EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Chennai/Bengaluru IT was a day of high drama laced with a strong and visible political message when expelled AIADMK leader, VK Sasikala, boarded the SUV used by her close associate, former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, with the AIADMK flag mounted on its bonnet, after being discharged from a Bengaluru hospital on Sunday morning. The fluttering party flag did not go down well among AIADMK leaders. One of the first to comment on this was Fisheries Minister D Jayakumar, who took strong exception to its use by the ousted party general secretary. He said such efforts to create confusion in the AIADMK would not succeed. But the euphoria around Victoria hospital was palpable from 9 in the morning after news of her discharge on the day was confirmed. Over 200 of her supporters had gathered outside the hospital to welcome their “Chinamma”. They were holding photos of both Jayalalithaa and Sasikala. Around 11 am, Sasikala’s nephew T T V Dinakaran entered the hospital and almost an hour later, Sasikala was driven out from there. By this time, the crowd swelled to almost a thousand people, few coming from as far as Kanyakumari. Wearing a mask and gloves, Sasikala waved to her supporters from the car and bowed to them with folded hands. They welcomed her by showering flowers on the car and chanting ‘Vaazhga Chinnamma’ (Hail Chinnamma). Few of her supporters also smashed pumpkins to ward off any “evil eye” on their leader. A convoy of 7-8 cars followed VK Sasikala moving on Jayalalithaa’s car with AIADMK flag | SHRIRAM BN Sasikala’s vehicle as it left Victoria Hospital and drove towards the KR Market Junction, with around 10 private bodyguards running alongside the vehicle all this while, with a few of them clinging on to it. A huge posse of police personnel were deployed for providing a thick blanket of security to her vehicle. Despite that, many of her supporters tried going past that to shower flower petals on the P4 vehicle. Rajeev Ranjan is new State Chief Secy, Shanmugam to be advisor Chennai: Dr Rajeev Ranjan, a senior IAS officer from the 1985 batch, will take over as the Chief Secretary to the Tamil Nadu government on Monday. His predecessor, K Shanmugam, who retired on Sunday, will take over as the advisor to the government for a year, starting Monday| P4 CLASSES TO RESUME FOR GRADES 9, 11, AND COLLEGES FROM FEB 8 E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Chennai Cinema halls and multiplexes in Tamil Nadu will be allowed to operate at 100 per cent capacity and all petrol stations will function round, the-clock from Monday . Announcing more of such unlock guidelines while extending the lockdown period till February 28, Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami said on Sunday that the new norms will be in line with the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) issued by the Union government. Another major announcement in this regard was resuming classes for students of grades 9 and 11 and of all undergraduate and postgraduate courses (including diploma) in all colleges and universities, including Arts and Science, polytechnic, engineering, marine and veterinary colleges, from February 8 by adhering to the SOP . From Monday the government has allowed , 50 per cent seating capacity for all sporting P3 events, including cricket. FANS AT CHEPAUK? With TN Govt allowing stadiums to operate at 50 per cent capacity, TNCA has requested the BCCI to allow fans for the second Test between India and England starting on Feb 13. The first Test which begins on Friday will be played behind closed doors WITH THIS ISSUE THE ESSENTIAL CAMPUS DIGEST YOUR LIFE COACH 28 PAGES, INCLUDING 16 OF edex (TABLOID) HOLY COW! Wrestling body gifted buffalo worth `1.5 lakh F I R O Z M I R Z A @ Chennai RECEIVING weird gifts for their accomplishments is not new for athletes. Tennis legend Roger Federer was gifted a cow, not once but twice, by the Swiss Open Gstaad. The 23rd Senior Women’s National Wrestling Championship in Agra on Sunday witnessed a similar incident, but this time it’s the governing body that ended up with the gift. In its bid to felicitate the best wrestler of the tournament, a sponsor on Sunday offered to gift a buffalo worth around `1.5 lakh. With the event not having an award in that category, the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) decided to accept the gift on behalf of the wrestlers. “A local sponsor wanted to gift the buffalo to the best wrestler. Given the format in which the competition was being organised, every weight category (total 10) has a gold winner so it was not possible to pick the best among them,” Vinod Tomar, WFI’s assistant secretary told this daily , . After much deliberation, the animal was eventually gifted to WFI, he added. Sources claimed that around `15,000 was spent only on the decoration of the buffalo that was brought to the venue with full fanfare. So what’s next? Even the federation is not sure what to do with the gift. A WFI source revealed the animal might be transported to the Republic Day tractor rally . In his Mann Ki Baat radio broadcast, Modi expressed dismay at the riots that day and the ‘insult’ to the Tricolour by a mob that had entered the Red Fort complex to plant a religious flag. The Tikait brothers echoed him but saw a plot in the violence. Meanwhile, the Delhi Police sent over 50 fresh notices to people, including farmer leaders, officials said. Police said some tractors used during the violence have been identified and notices were sent to their owners. The police are also conducting investigations at several locations outside Delhi, including Punjab and Haryana, to locate the people involved in the riots. WFI’s headquarters in New Delhi. The federation runs its office from presid ent Brijbhushan Sharan Singh’s official residence in Delhi. Singh is a BJP MP from Kaiserganj, Uttar Pradesh. The buffalo which was gifted to the Wrestling Federation of India in Agra on Sunday | SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT BUDGET 2021-22 We can see a Budget which is a budget like never before. 100 years of India wouldn’t have seen a Budget being made postpandemic like this FM Nirmala Sitharaman during her address to the CII Partnership Summit 2020 on January 5 11:00 am Budget presentation begins Budget may increase tax rebate under Section 80C and 80D from `1.5 L to `2 L Standard deduction limit likely to be doubled to `1 Lakh increasing the exemption for health expenses Higher tax rebate likely for firsttime home buyers Government to fix some anomalies in the National Pension Scheme with regard to income tax benefits Covid-19 cess to raise revenue on the cards J1,19,847 cr Increasing tax on long-term capital gains from equity and property is a possibility Further increase in import duty on sin goods and luxury items Spending more on health infrastructure is a given, by how much more is the question Budget is likely to set up a separate bank for infrastructure sector More privatisation drive of PSUs, privatisation of electricity distribution expected Substantial increase in defence outlay to deal with a belligerent China Atmanirbhar overdrive to push indigenisation and accelerate growth January GST collection, the highest monthly mop-up so far. Came as a sentiment booster a day before the Budget
Express Network Private Limited publishes thirty three E-paper editions of The New Indian Express newspaper , thirty two E-paper editions of Dinamani, one E-paper edition of The Morning Standard, one E-paper edition of Malayalam Vaarika magazine and one E-paper edition of the Indulge - The Morning Standard, Kolkatta.