WARANGAL THURSDAY FEBRUARY 11, 2021 `7.00 PAGES 12 CITY EDITION ACADEMIC REGRESSION DURING PANDEMIC: STUDY The Loss of Learning During the Pandemic study reveals 92% kids lost at least one speciﬁc language ability from the previous year NEGATIVE IMPACT ON LEARNING LEVELS OF KIDS The language ability lost includes describing a picture or their experiences orally; reading familiar words; reading with comprehension. The study on primary school children, carried out by Azim Premji Univ, highlights the negative impact on the learning levels of children due to prolonged closure of schools and suggests immediate action to rectify the regression 16,067 SCRAP VACATIONS, REDRAW SYLLABI ■ 82% of children have lost at least one specific mathematical ability like identifying single and two-digit numbers; using basic problem solving operations; describing 2D/3D shapes ■ Report suggests measures like eliminating vacations, extending academic year, reconfiguring syllabus as ways to arrest the slide KIDS OF MP, CHHATTISGARH, KARNATAKA, RAJASTHAN AND UTTARAKHAND SURVEYED 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 Amid full-blown freedom of speech spat with Twitter, govt begins Kooing B I S M A H M A L I K @ Bengaluru CAUGHT in the eye of a political storm over the ongoing farmers protests, US social media giant Twitter on Wednesday said it had suspended more than 500 of the 1,178 accounts the ministry of electronics and information technology ordered it to remove citing the possibility of inciting violence and threat to national security . However, the site took a dig at the government saying the others were not suspended as the blocking orders were not consistent with Indian law. “Keeping with our principles of defending protected speech and freedom of expression, we have not taken any action on accounts that consist of news media entities, journalists, activists, and politicians. To do so, we believe, would violate their fundamental right to free expression under Indian law,” Twitter said. The ministry termed Twitter’s statement as ‘unusual’, posting its response first on a rival platform, Koo, which garnered more than three million downloads in two days. “Upon the request of Twitter seeking a meeting with the government, the Secretary IT was to engage with senior management of Twitter. In this light a blog post published prior to this engagement is unu- Fully Indian firm Aprameya R, the co-founder and CEO of Koo, said it is an India registered firm backed by investors like 3one4 capital. A Chinese investor, Shunwei, is also a shareholder, but will exit fully sual. The gover nment will share its response soon,” Meity said in a statement. The Centre had last week warned Twitter of legal action under Section 69(A) of the Information Technology Act, which provides for imprisonment up to seven years besides a penalty if it fails to take down , the 1,178 accounts. Legal experts told TNIE that Twitter may have very few op- Ready for talks, says Modi while backing reforms AGITATION PATH NOBODY had asked for the triple talaq or dowry laws, but they were still enacted, for reforms must be attuned with changing times was Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s reply to the Opposition’s charge that farmers had not sought the agri laws. Addressing a joint sitting of the two Houses after Lok Sabha passed the Motion of Thanks to the address of President Ram Nath Kovind, Modi on Tuesday reiterated his government’s willingness to talk with the farmers all the while defending the laws as progressive. “Besides creating an additional, but optional, avenue has there been any change after the enactment of the laws? When the farm laws offer only an option, there cannot be any reasons for protests,” he said. Conceding that 100% acceptance to any new measure was not possible, Modi, however, said progress could not be gained without shedding the status quo mindset. Recalling Chaudhary Charan Singh’s words on farm fragmentation, he said: “We cannot progress if we do not care for small farmers, who constitute 80% of the On 77th day of their protest, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha prepared a detailed panIndia protest plan VROs TURN ERRAND BOYS With their posts abolished, the VROs are being entrusted with menial jobs by some Tahsildars ONE MORE ‘VAX DEATH’ IN TS An Anganwadi worker dies four days after taking a Covid vaccination shot PAGE 2 FEB 12: All toll plazas in Rajasthan will be made toll free FEB 14: Candle and mashaal march across the country FEB 16: Solidarity day to mark birth anniversary of Sir Chhotu Ram FEB 18: Four-hour rail roko across the country farming community Fragmen. tation is a reality, and this is what the farmers’ producers organisations aim to address. A new world order is in the making in the post-corona era, and we have to choose between being a mute spectator and making reforms. An Atmanirbhar Bharat will play a crucial role in the new world order.” When Congress leaders began disrupting his speech, Modi took potshots at the GOP , saying it was divided and confused. He also backed the private sector to be seen on a par with the public sector enterprises as a driver of Atmanirbhar Bharat. EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Hyderabad Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao speaks at a public meeting at Halia in Nalgonda district on Wednesday KCR calls BJP, Cong men dogs & vultures, threatens to crush them VV BALAKRISHNA / A SESHACHARYULU @ Hyderabad / Nalgonda TARGETING the Congress and the BJP leaders, Chief Minister and TRS president K Chandrasekhar Rao on Wednesday went off the tangent, calling them ‘dogs’ and ‘vultures’ at a public meeting in Halia in Nalgonda district, where a byelection for Nagarjunasagar Assembly seat is due. The trigger came from a handful of BJP workers who began raising slogans against the government as soon as the Chief Minister started speaking. He suddenly lost his composure and warned them that he would trample upon them mercilessly if they continued creating trouble. While asking the police personnel to remove the agitating workers, he described them as dogs which have the habit of All lift irrigation schemes will be completed in next one or one-and-a-half years time. If they are not completed, the TRS will not seek votes again in the next general elections K Chandrasekhar Rao, Chief Minister barking without any valid reason. Only recently, Rao drew flak from several quarters when he flew into a rage at the TRS leaders at the party’s State executive committee meeting and used highly objectionable words against them, and in the process was said to have pointed out that he attached no more importance to the chief minister’s position than he would to a slipper on his left foot. Referring to the BJP leaders, he called them beggars who did not know when to go for begging as they are new (kottha Surprise disengagement in Ladakh M AYA N K S I N G H & P U S H K A R B A N A K A R @ New Delhi AFTER a nine-month-long stand-off along the Line of Actual Control in Eastern Ladakh, the situation appeared to ease a tad on Wednesday as both China and India began a “synchronized and organised” disengagement process. While Indian sources said it was limited to armoured vehicles, the Chinese Ministry of National Defence claimed that the frontline troops from both sides along the Pangong Tso had started disengaging. Senior Colonel Wu Qian, the Chinese Ministry of National Defence spokesperson, said: “The Chinese and Indian troops started synchronised organised disengagement from February 10. It was in accordance with the consensus at the ninth round of China-India Corps Commander level meeting.” Pullback of armoured vehicles A senior Army officer confirmed the pullback of armoured vehicles and said. “The armoured vehicles are moving back but troops at the frontline have not been thinned.” WRONG TUNNEL Search suffers for want of layout; direction altered V I N E E T U PA D H YAY @ Tapovan (Uttarakhand) AFTER more than 72 hours of operations to reach 37 workers stuck in a tunnel of the Tapovan Hydropower project in Chamoli district following flash floods on Sunday, the rescue strategy changed with new information that they may be in another tunnel located below the main D-shaped ‘Intake Adit Tunnel’. Till now, the D-shaped 180-metre-long tunnel was the focal point of the mission by a combined rescue team comprising the Indo-Tibetan Border Police, National Disaster Response Force, Army, Indian Reserve Battalion, State Disaster Response Force, Indian Air Force, Navy state police depart, ment and other agencies. Ravinath Raman, commissioner of Garhwal division of Uttarakhand, told TNIE, “Earlier, the idea was that they may be trapped inside the 180 metre tunnel at a bend. Now, the rescue team has started drilling the ground at 70-75 metres in- his key cabinet colleagues as well as government departments active on the site. Industries and Commerce minister Piyush Goyal, IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra and Bollywood actress Kangana Ranaut were amongst those who shifted to the ‘desi’ rival Koo, which also onboarded key gover nment de par tments on Wednesday . BPharm student raped by auto driver at Jodimetla Shed status quo mindset and let new laws help empower small farmers, urges PM EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi tions since it has only partly complied with the government orders, while free speech activists denounced the government’s crackdown on social media by using ‘le g al weapons’. India remains a key market for the social media giant with more than 75 million active users, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi who has a 65.5 million strong user base with side that tunnel to rescue the workers.” The decision was taken at a combined meeting of state government authorities, the ar med forces and the NTPC. A senior rescue official revealed that they did not have the tunnel network’s layout maps for the first two days to make an informed decision on the way forward. The detailed layout was shared on Tuesday by Rithwik Projects Pvt Ltd, a Hyderabad based firm building the tunnels for NTPC’s project. Rescue operations continue at Tapovan Tunnel in Joshimath | SHEKHAR YADAV bitchagallu podderugaru) and that they should be wary of what they are saying or would face consequences (vollu daggarapettukuni vyavaharin-chali). During the course of the meeting, Rao also enumerated various welfare and developmental schemes of the TRS government. While explaining the Rythu Bandhu scheme, he said that during the Congress regime, farmers faced several problems, including corruption by the VROs. “We are implementing Rythu Bandhu. But, the Congress men are like Rythu Raabandulu (vultures which feed on farmers),” he said. Without naming TPCC working president Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka, he came down hard on the Congress leader for taking up the “Polam Baata” programme. “Polam bata nee bonda baata”, Rao heckled at CONTINUED ON P4 Bhatti. AN auto driver kidnapped and raped a BPharm student, who was headed home from her college located in Kandlakoya. The intoxicated auto driver, who was high on ganja as well, abandoned her along the main road at Jodimetla in the Keesara police station limits. The girl, who had been disrobed, came on to the road and pleaded with the locals to help her. Some people called the police who came to the spot and shifted the victim for medical treatment. She is currently being treated in a private hospital near Medipally. The victim’s parents were also informed. Police say the auto driver forcibly detained the student and raped her behind the bushes. He fled from the spot leaving the victim in an unconscious state. Cases have been registered under relevant sections and police are verifying footage from nearby CCTVs to identify the accused. They also collected samples from the scene of offence. Police are also probing if more than one person was involved in the rape. Delay in registering case Initially the police officials of , both Ghatkesar and Keesara police refused to take up the case and argued over jurisdicCONTINUED ON P3 tion. Mayoral election likely to witness a close tussle E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Hyderabad THE big day has arrived. Now, it’s time for the election of a new Mayor and Deputy Mayor. Anxiety is growing in the TRS camp as to who would get the opportunity to wear the mayoral robes as the pink party leadership is keeping the name of its candidate a closely-guarded secret. The quorum requires 97 members for the election to be held for both Mayor and Deputy Mayor positions and whoever gets maximum votes would be declared elected. If the quorum is available on Thursday then the TRS will bag , both the Mayor and Deputy Mayor posts without any hitch. According to sources in the State Election Commission (SEC), the election will be held if there is a quorum with presence of 97 members. “Once there is a quorum for conducting the elections, the single largest party will automatically win the Mayor’s post,” CONTINUED ON P3 sources explained.
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