vijayawada l wednesday l february 10, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l late city EDITION w.h.o. probe into origins of coronavirus a dud Leak of virus from the Wuhan lab unlikely, claims team, inconclusive on the origin and human transmission; aligns itself with China’s line transmission from intermediary species WHO’s foreign expert Ben Embarek feels human transmission happened through an intermediary species, but identifying the actual host would require a detailed probe. Comprising experts from 10 countries, the mission landed in China on Jan 14 after being earlier stonewalled by Beijing, which had provoked the WHO’s China-friendly chief to issue a rare public rebuke 2.3 mn strict chinese monitoring ■ The run-up to the probe was marked by the US and China trading charges. China relented to host the team amid increasing global pressure, but kept the probe’s progress under strict monitoring ■ Incidentally, the Wuhan whistleblower Dr Li Wenliang’s first death anniversary was commemorated earlier this week deaths caused across the globe by the virus since december 2019 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 YSRC-backed candidates 2,723 sweep panchayat elections Poll outcome 3,249 Total panchayats in phase I 1 No nominations Elections held filed Results 75 - TDP 525 1,200 Unanimous elections YSRC-backed candidates 2 - BJP 8 - others YSRC-backed candidates will win in 91 to 94 per cent of gram panchayats across the State. Our victory is attributed to the welfare schemes being implemented by the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government A large number of voters line up at a polling station at Khajipet in Kadapa district on Tuesday to cast their vote in the panchayat elections | express VMC to impose spot fines on waste mgmt rule violators Express News Service @Vijayawada Think twice before dumping the waste in vacant lands in the city The Vijayawada Municipal . Corporation (VMC) has decided to implement the Solid Waste Management Rules 2016 strictly. Henceforth, the VMC will impose spot fines on violators of the Waste Management Rules. As per the notification issued by the VMC on Tuesday , a fine of `5,000 will be imposed if any individual is found burning garbage on the roadside. If the violation of rules is repeated, the fine will be doubled. Similarly a fine of `1,000 will , be imposed on those who dump construction and demolition waste into the side drains. If the violation is repeated, the fine will go up to `2,000. Dumping of waste on the roadside and into drains attracts of fine of `500. If it is done for the second time, the fine will be `1,000. A fine of `100 will be collected from households if the waste is not segregating into dry and wet at source. If unsegregated waste is handed over to VMC sanitation staff for the second time, the fine will be `200. The VMC has authorised all sanitary inspectors and zone officers to levy and collect spot fines from citizens for violation of the Solid Waste Management Rules. For removal of construction and demolition waste, households can contact VMC helpline No. 9963088879. The VMC has enrolled itself to achieve 5 star rating (Garbage Free City) from the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA). “We are requesting people to extend their support to the VMC to achieve the Garbage Free City tag from the Centre. One can make suggestions to the VMC in this regard on phone No. 9866996388, Municipal Commissioner V Prasanna Venkatesh said. The concept of collecting fines from residents and shopkeepers is to inculcate self-discipline among them, which helps the VMC promote hygiene in the city he told TNIE. , express read ‘Main instigator’ of Red Fort riots Sidhu arrested New Delhi: Actor Deep Sidhu, who was on the run after allegedly instigating a mob to desecrate the Tricolour at the Red Fort on Republic Day, was arrested from his hideout in Haryana’s Karnal on Monday night. Sidhu carried a reward of `1 lakh. A team of Southwestern Range of Special Cell led by Sanjeev Yadav made the arrest around 10.30 pm. Botcha Satyanarayana, Municipal Administration Minister E x p r e s s N e w s S e r v i c e @ Vijayawada More than 81 per cent of the electorate exercised their franchise in the first phase of panchayat elections, which passed off peacefully barring stray incidents of skirmishes between the supporters of the ruling YSRC and opposition Telugu Desam, in the State on Tuesday . The results of panchayat sarpanch and ward member posts started trickling in and the YSRC supported candidates have bagged most of the panchayats. The elections to panchayats are fought on non-political basis. But the candidates supported by all the major political parties are in the election fray resulting in a keen contest. , When the reports last came in, the results of 1,350 panchayats were declared and the YSRC-backed candidates emerged victorious in more than 1,200 panchayats. The ruling party-backed candidates bagged most of the panchayats in Visakhapatnam, Guntur, Chittoor, Nellore and Anantapur districts. P5 It’s a mistake! Race trying to reach 37time against workers Rescuers Jagan against sister’s T party plans: Sajjala trapped deep within the tunnel; 32 bodies found so far at various places V i n e e t U pa d h yay @ Dehradun With the toll in the Uttarakhand disaster climbing to 32, rescue workers raced against time on Tuesday to save the 37 workers trapped deep inside the Tapovan tunnel since Sunday's flash floods that choked it with loads of slush. The 37 are part of the 174 others who are still missing. Officials from the Army Medical Corps (AMC) said the trapped workers are not just without food and water, night time temperature within the tunnel could go down to as low as 20C. "They don't have food, water and additional amenities to shield themselves from the cold. Time indeed is running out for them," an AMC official agreed." But officials associated with the project said workers have enough clothing to give them some protection from the freezing temperature. Rakesh Dimri, an official from NTPC said, "The workers have war m clothes, boots, helmet with headlight, a torch, a rope, a knife and other items. I hope they will be rescued." The key to survival is the availabliity of air vents, said medical experts. Dr Vipul Kandwal, a medical practitioner in Dehradun, said, "If they are not drowned, air passage would act as a lifesaver. The problem with sludge is it blocks almost everything, including oxygen." Dr Adarsh Singh concurred. "Time is not on their side, as a human can survive without food or water or both for a week or so under such conditions." However, they do not rule out the possibility of a miracle. "We have witnessed miracles and I am certain that our forces will save all those men. Whole nation's prayers and wishes are with them," said Dr Singh. Meanwhile, officials have deployed heli-bound Laser and Electromagnetic Pulse Imager to look for air pockets in the 1.9 km long tunnel network at the hydropower project site. Manjunath P C, commandant of Indian Reserve Battalion said, "This will act as a multiplier in our efforts to save the trapped workers." Meanwhile, six bodies were found at different locations on Tuesday, including Raini village, Tapovan, Nandprayag, Karnpyarag and Haridwar, taking the total body count to 32. From within the tunnel, nine dismembered body parts were found. Also five vehicles that were swept into the tunnel have been recovered. They include a Scorpio and a JCB. Naval divers have been deployed to search for bodies at various locations, including in the vicinity of the Tapovan project as more than 100 workers were at the site when tragedy struck. Aparna Kumar, deputy-inspector general, ITBP, Dehradun sector said, "No stone has been left unturned to save those men. We have reached beyond 100 metres into the 180-metre stretch of the tunnel where the men are trapped." Many feel at this pace the operation to reach them could take three-four more days. P7 E x p r e s s N e w s S e r v i c e @ Vijayawada ‘No differences in personal way in family’ There was a difference of opinion between Jagan and Sharmila, but not differences in a personal way, said YSRC general secretary Sajjala Ramakrishna Reddy, in reply to a query on her move to float a party no change in Jagan’s view on YSRC expansion Jagan has always been consistent in his opinion that once the State was divided, each State has its own issues. He is of the view that we cannot do justice to the people who reposed trust in us in Andhra Pradesh if we expand in Telangana, said Sajjala The YSRC on Tuesday distanced itself from YS Sharmila’s announcement that she could float a party in the neighbouring State of Telangana, making it crystal clear that if she did so, it would be her individual decision. Addressing a press conference here soon after her ‘ thA meeya Sammelanam’ in Hyderabad, YSRC general secretary Sajjala Ramakrishna Reddy revealed that the party chief and Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy was against expanding the party in Telangana and had in fact tried to persuade his sister Sharmila not to press ahead with her plans. “Discussions have been taking place at least for the past two to three months. We could discern her thought process that she wants to explore the possibility of floating a party he said and in reply to a query disclosed ,” , that there was a difference of opinion between Jagan and Sharmila, but not differences in a personal way . “I myself am admitting that it is a difference of opinion. Our president (Jagan) is of the view that we cannot do justice to the people who reposed trust in us here if we expand in Telangana. He is our party president and the Chief Minister. He is answerable to the people of Andhra Pradesh. Every decision is taken keeping in mind not just the party but also the State,” Sajjala explained. Elaborating further, he explained that several times since the bifurcation of the State, discussions were held on whether to own our supporters and admirers in Telangana. But Jagan has always been consistent in his opinion that once the State was divided, each State has its own issues that need to be resolved diplomatically, State to P5 State, government to government. Sharmila hopes to emulate dad in TS V V B a l a k r i s h n a @ Hyderabad Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy’s sister YS Sharmila, who declared her intention to restoring “Rajanna Rajyam”, appears set to change the patterns in the political kaleidoscope in Telangana. Sharmila, who made a sudden political entry in Telangana, held her first meeting with leaders of erstwhile Nalgonda district and elicited their opinion on the way ahead for reaching her objective. She, for the record, said she was holding meetings with district leaders only to understand “ground realities” and felt satisfied that the response was quite encoura ging. “Those whom I met today were very enthusiastic. It is possible to restore Rajanna Rajyam in Telangana,” she said. She, however, said she Jagan Mohan Reddy is doing his job in AP. He is my elder brother and I hope he will bless me. I will do my work in Telangana Sharmila would announce her future plans only after holding discussions with followers in all the districts, each day one after the other. During the meeting, Sharmila is quoted as having said, “You are at the ground level. You know things better. Please provide feedback.” During a brief interaction with media later, Sharmila asked whether YSR’s schemes like Aarogyasri were being implemented or not in the State. “Whether all the people are getting benefits under Aarogyasri,” she asked. P5 touching moment (Clockwise from left) An aerial view of the Tapovan barrage two days after the flash floods; rescuers try to reach the tunnel from another end; and a recovered body | Shekhar Yadav Rescue effort Over 100 personnel from ITBP, SDRF and NDRF part of the rescue team. In all, over 800 personnel are on the site. 700 personnel are on standby Two excavator/JCB machines have excavated over 6,700 tonnes of slush from the tunnel. They have reached 130 m into the 30 ft high, 25 ft wide tunnel. But muck removal is taking time, reducing the cleared part to 90 m A drone is being used to look inside the tunnel to find possible entry points through the slush/muck Proud to be Hindustani Muslim, says Azad after PM’s teary farewell Express News Service @ New Delhi An emotional Prime Minister Narendra Modi bade a tearful farewell to Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad, whose current tenure ends on February 15. Azad signed off with a poignant speech that drew a parallel between the lives of Muslims in India and Pakistan, and said he prided himself in being a Hindustani Musalman. Asserting that India was untainted by the evil practices prevalent in countries like Pa- kistan, Azad said, “If any Muslim in the world should be proud, it should be the Hindustani Muslims. I am among those who have never been to Pakistan, but when I read about the evils that exist in Pakistani society, I think Hindustani Muslims should be proud.” Modi’s speech was interspersed with many long pauses as he broke down while recalling his long association with Azad Describing him as his true friend. Modi said: “his work will inspire generations of MPs to come. Posts come, high offices come, power comes, but one must learn from Ghulam Nabi Azadji how to handle them.” Recalling the 2007 terror attack in Kashmir, where a grenade was lobbed at a bus carrying Gujarat pilgrims, Modi said, “Nabiji was as concerned as he would have been if his family members were victims. He was the first person to call me. During that call, he wept,” Modi said.
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