bhubaneswar l monday l february 01, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 30 l late CITY 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 | P9 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 E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi Farmers raise slogans during their ongoing protest against the new farm laws at 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 INTACH flags serious violations in Ekamra Kshetra project E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar THE demolitions undertaken around the 12th century Lingaraj temple as a part of the Ekamra Kshetra beautification drive is in clear violation of the existing heritage norms, said members of Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) on Sunday . An eight-member INTACH team visited the site adjacent to the Suka-Sari temple, where the ASI has discovered remains of a temple floor and architectural fragments last week after BMC-BDA demolished structures on the two-acre land. The team found “glaring” examples of violations pertaining to protection and conservation of monuments in Ekamra Kshetra, which has been declared a heritage zone by the Odisha government. In the last three months, the civic agencies have demolished a number of old monuments including Gopal Tirtha Mutt near the Suka-Sari temple complex and a Sanskrit college near the Sari Deula. “There have been blatant violations of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act (AMASR Act). Not only did they flout the heritage guidelines but also failed to assess what lies beneath the earth”, said Anil Dhir, project coordinator of the INTACH, Odisha. There have been blatant violations of the AMASR Act in the works that have so far been undertaken in the Suka-Sari site. There was no involvement of heritage experts in the Ekamra Kshetra plan Anil Dhir, INTACH member He said prior to any construction/demolition at a heritage zone, a ground-penetrating radar (GPR) survey is a must to assess what lies beneath the surface. GPR is a non-intrusive geophysical method to image the sub-surface. However, in case of Ekamra Kshetra neither did the BMC do a GPR survey nor consult heritage experts prior to the demolition that was done using heavy CONTINUED ON: P7 machinery . 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 9 killed, 11 injured in road accident near Kotpad E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar/Jeypore A trip to attend the Dasaha (mourning rituals) of a deceased kin ended tragically for a group of 30 persons of Chhattisgarh when the pickup van they were travelling in hit a roadside tree and overturned, killing nine and injuring 11 near Murtahandi village in Koraput district’s Kotpad police limits on Sunday evening. Initial investigation suggested all the passengers are from Chhattisgarh. At least seven were killed on the spot and two others succumbed at Kotpad community health centre, South Western Range DIG, Rajesh Pandit said. All the 11 injured persons have been shifted to Jagdalpur. The accident took place on the National Highway at about 8.45 pm. The driver of the ill-fated vehicle managed to flee after the incident. The pickup van, with a Chhattisgarh registration number, was carrying around 30 passengers which may have led to the casualties, police said. “Prima facie, it appears the pickup van overturned just ahead of the railway tracks. There were close to 30 passengers inside the vehicle,” said an officer of the Odisha Fire Service. Fire Service personnel rushed to the accident site. Two teams from Kotpad and Borigumma fire stations are engaged in the rescue operations. The accident site had very little illumination available making it difficult for rescue and relief operations. Sources said the passengers had come from Nagarnar in Bastar district to attend the death rituals of one of their relatives at Murtahandi in Koraput. WITH THIS ISSUE THE ESSENTIAL CAMPUS DIGEST YOUR LIFE COACH 30 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 wi h the gift. t 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 federati runs its on office from presid nt Brijbe hushan Sharan Si gh’s official n residence in Delhi. Si is a ngh BJP MP from Kaiserganj, Uttar Pradesh. The buffalo which was gifted to the Wrestling Federation of India in Agra on Sunday | SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT Maoist gunned down in Malkangiri Bhubaneswar: A day after Red rebels killed two villagers in Kandhamal district, a Maoist was gunned down in an exchange of fire with the security forces at Madakapadar panchayat in Malkangiri district in the wee hours on Sunday. On a tip off about movement of the ultras in the region, a joint operation was launched by District Voluntary Force and SOG in Mathili | P6 Budget may increase tax rebate under Section 80C and 80D from `1.5 l to `2 l 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 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.