BHUBANESWAR l friday l february 19, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l JEYPORE EDITION Farmers’ rail blockade peaceful The noon to 4 pm agitation had minimal impact on train services across the country, Indian Railways officials said trains halted at stations in ferozepur Cautious Delhi metro In Punjab, protesters sat on tracks at many places on the DelhiLudhiana-Amritsar railway route. The Ferozepur division halted trains at stations so that passengers faced less inconvenience during the protest Entry and exit at four metro stations, including at the Tikri border, were shut by the DMRC authorities for nearly four hours in view of the security situation due to a rail blockade. The Tikri Border metro station is near the farmers’ protest site. The entry, exit points were reopened after the four-hour protest ended. Meanwhile, the Delhi Police and paramilitary personnel kept a tight vigil in several parts of the National Capital Resumed normal operations after 4 pm No untoward incident was reported. Train movement in all the zones resumed normal operations after the agitation. The railways had deployed 20 additional companies of the RPF across the country, especially in Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal elsewhere in the country At least 12 people were detained at Lasur station in Aurangabad after they stopped the Jalna-Mumbai Janshatabdi train ahead of the protest schedule In Rajasthan, the Rewari-Sri Ganganagar special train was cancelled. Apart from this, the protest was largely symbolic with little impact on traffic In Bengaluru, the protest was lowkey but there was a good turnout of protesters in Raichur, Belagavi and Davangere, where some were arrested 25 trains regulated during the stir Farmers leader Rakesh Tikait said there would be no let up in the protest, and urged his colleagues to even be prepared to sacrifice their standing crop 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 big splash L 14.25 cr Glenn Maxwell (RCB) Franchises spent big on all-rounders and bowlers at the IPL player auction in Chennai on Thursday L 16.25 cr Chris Morris (RR) L 14 cr Jhye Richardson (PK) L 9.25 cr K Gowtham (CSK) L 15 cr Kyle Jamieson (RCB) L 8 cr Riley Meredith (PK) L 7 cr Moeen Ali (CSK) Stormy start to Budget session, Oppn walks out E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e noon session. They criticised @ Bhubaneswar the State government for its inaction in stopping Andhra The Budget session of the As- Pradesh government from sembly started off on a stormy holding panchayat elections note on Thursday with the in disputed villages under KoCongress and BJP members tia panchayat of Koraput and taking on the government other border villages along over its failure to protect the with the unprecedented rise State’s interests and allowing in fuel prices, deteriorating Andhra Pradesh to claim law and order situation and rights over the disputed bor- increasing number of politider villages by conducting cal murders in the State. elections there. “Andhra Pradesh occupied They staged a walkout soon the land of Odisha. It has also after Gover nor conducted panchayGaneshi Lal started at elections in Odishis address to the ha villages. These House. Cong ress issues should have members led by its been included in the Andhra Pradesh whip Taraprasad occupied the land of G o v e r n o r ’ s a d Odisha. It has also Bahinipati raised dress,” leader of the conducted slogans and requestCongress Legislaed the Governor to panchayat elections ture Party Narasin Odisha villages. stop reading the These issues should ingha Mishra told speech in praise of have been included mediapersons. the BJD gover nThe BJP members in the Governor’s ment. Soon, the BJP also came down address members followed heavily on the State Narasingha Mishra, suit and walked out government for failLeader of the Congress of the House. ing to stop Andhra Legislature Party After staging the Pradesh from holdwalkout from the ing panchayat polls House, the Opposition mem- in Kotia. They also raised the bers sat on a dharna near the issue of large scale irregulariMahatma Gandhi’s statue on ties in paddy procurement the Assembly premises. Noisy and rising incidents of politiscenes continued in the House cal violence. The Budget sesduring the post-lunch session sion started with strict adheras well. BJP members created ence to Covid-19 guidelines. a ruckus in the House while All members had to produce government chief whip Pram- corona- negative reports for ila Mallik was speaking on entering the House. Chief the thanks motion to the Gov- Minister Naveen Patnaik, who ernor’s address. had attended the previous two Congress members did not sessions on virtual mode, was participate in the proceedings physically present in the House of the House during the after- on Thursday . The last buy at 2021 Player Auction was that of Arjun, the son of Sachin Tendulkar. Mumbai Indians bought the left-arm seamer at his base price of `20 lakhs Bowlers capable of generating heat (think Ferguson, Bumrah, Nortje, Rabada Archer) have done well in recent seasons. So it was no surprise to see the likes of Meredith -- who touches north of 145 km/ ph easily -- commanding attention. Put Milne (Mumbai) and Richardson (Punjab) in the same bracket. Specialist openers fail If recency bias was anything, Alex Hales, who was an inspiration at the Big Bash, should have got a bid. But he didn’t. One reason maybe he doesn’t bowl. Ditto Jason Roy. Liam Livingstone, a six-hitting machine, got a bid but only because he bowls the odd over. Nephew and son in the spotlight as Shah, Didi trade barbs on nepotism P r a n a b M o n d a l @ Kolkata Union home minister Amit Shah and West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee were on Thursday locked in a war of words while addressing two separate rallies in South 24 Parganas district on the issue of nepotism. With Shah accusing Mamata’s nephew Abhishek Banerjee of siphoning off the Centre’s grants meant for people’s welfare and warning that the BJPled government, after wresting power in Bengal, would bring all culprits to book, Mamata hit back saying Shah’s son will also not be spared either for earning crores of rupees. Abhishek represents Diamond Harbour in South 24 Parganas in the Lok Sabha and Jai Amit Shah is the powerful secretary of the Indian cricket board. FB ‘unlikes’ Australia ... over a proposed law to force it to share ad revenue with media. Here’s why it’s putting the squeeze The big numbers 17 million Australians disenfranchised from sharing news content People dependent on Google and Facebook for news access 50% 2.8 billion Facebook users worldwide can’t share articles from Australian publishers Oz Bill Aims to make big tech firms compensate local media for losses in advertising revenue FB counterpoint 5.1 billion $315 million Free referrals Worth revenue for Australian generated for publishers created publishers Governor Prof Ganeshi Lal addressing the Budget session of Odisha Legislative Assembly in Bhubaneswar on Thursday | Express Tendulkar son in MI Pacers are the new sexy Why worry Fear Australia’s action can inspire similar laws across the world Google is already signing deals with publishers in other countries | P9 The Centre’s grants have been siphoned off by the nephew and his men Amit Shah, Union home minister While addressing a rally at Namkhana, Shah said, ‘’Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government gave financial assistance of `3,59,000 crore in the past five years for the people of West Bengal. But the money was siphoned off by the nephew and his men. If the BJP wrests power in Bengal, the new government will find the culprits even if they take refuge under the ground, and put them behind bars.’’ A riled Mamata for the first time responded to the nephew barb. “Every day you (Shah) Your son is earning crores of money. How? Your son will also not be spared Mamata Banerjee, chief minister raise the nephew issue. Your son is earning crores of money . How? Your son will also not be spared,’’ she growled. Alleging corruption in distributing relief to cyclone Amphan’s victims, Shah said the Centre’s grant was stolen by Abhishek and TMC’s goons. A few kilometres away from Shah’s rally venue, Mamata gave it back while addressing a gathering in Pailan in the same district. “My family will not do anything that could malign the image of Bengal... Abhishek is facing attacks because of me.’’ Modi moots spl visas for docs, nurses in India’s neighbourhood E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday suggested the creation of special visas for doctors and nurses in neighbouring countries to help them respond to health emergencies in the region more effectively . The prime minister was addressing a workshop, initiated by India, on Covid management. “Over the past year, our health cooperation has already achieved so much. Can we now think of raising our ambition further? Can we consider creating a special visa scheme for our doctors and nurses, so that they can travel quickly within our region during health emergencies, on the request of the receiving country?” he said. The workshop assumed significance as for the first time in years, Pakistan attended an Lockdowns back in parts of maharashtra With fresh Covid cases spiralling again, Maharashtra ordered a 10-day lockdown in Yavatmal district from Thursday night. Also, weekend lockdown was announced in Amravati district from 8 pm on Saturday to 7 am on Monday. The state reported 4,787 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, the highest one-day count this year | P7 Odisha ropes in global agencies to make farmers market-ready Hemant Kumar Rout @ Bhubaneswar SMALL and marginal farmers who face difficulties in marketing their produce and often resort to distress sale in the absence of potential buyers can now breathe easy . The Odisha government has roped in international agencies to develop an ecosystem for farmer producer org anisations (FPOs) and streamline access to markets besides up-skilling farmers to interact with the private sector. Having set up a corpus fund of `100 crore, the State government has also made budgetary provision of `555 crore for nurturing and promoting the farmers’ bodies. With agriculture experiencing rapid growth post-lockdown despite several hindrances like lack of buyers or falling price, the skill develop- Around 300 FPOs will be benefited by the initiative. They will be facilitated with new technology, infrastructure, knowledge, IT applications, market intelligence and linkage Saurabh Garg, Principal Secretary, Agriculture ment of FPOs will make them marketready and help double their income, official sources said. The State government has launched a three-year Promotion and Stabilisation of Farmer Producer Organisations (PSFPO) project with international non-profit organisation Tanager and global impact firm Palladium to increase the profitability and sustainability of FPOs and market facing companies (MFCs) in Odisha. The initiative supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will enhance farmers’ confidence, ability to challenge structural inequalities and oppressive social norms, and enhance their bargaining power in markets, officials said. Principal Secretary of Agriculture and Farmers’ Empowerment department Saurabh Garg said around 300 FPOs in the State will be benefited by the initiative. The farmers bodies will be facilitated with new technology, infrastructure, knowledge, IT applications, market intelligence and linkage to ensure availability of end-to-end services for their members. Initially, Tanager will study the needs of FPOs and how it can be a mechanism for smallholder farmers to make significant gains in income, market access, and gender equity CONTINUED ON: P5 . uncovering the past Another temple base, fallen stones found behind Sari Deula E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar AS archaeologists continue to scan the Suka-Sari temple complex, more and more remains of ancient temples that have been buried since ages are coming to the fore. A new structure, believed to be the base of a temple, has been dug out in an area behind the Sari Deula by the ASI, Bhubaneswar circle, on Thursday. Archaeologists informed that the base of a temple with coni- cal mouldings have been exposed during scientific cleaning in the south-east corner of the Sari temple. The portion of the base which was exposed on the day measures 2.5 metre in length and is at a depth of 80 cm from the ground level. Some fallen stones of the structure have also been found from the spot. “Further excavation will reveal how many conical mouldings of the temple exist and what lies beneath the base. Odishan style of temples have five kinds of base mouldings Khura, Kumbha, Pata, Kani, Basanta. The moulding that has been completely exposed is one among them”, said an archaeologist working on the site. Scientific cleaning of the Suka-Sari temple complex has been continuing for over a fortnight after mutts and private structures on the two acre land were razed by the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation. The ASI has been excavating the north east and north west corners of the Sari Deula and dug out the floor of a temple, remains of a Shiva temple, earlymedieval pottery remains (red and gray ware) and laterite blocks from both the directions. The Sari Deula is a west-facing temple. While archaeologists earlier believed that it was built on the Panchayatan model (having four subsidiary shrines in all directions), the recent findings are a pointer to the fact that more shrines existed in the temple complex, albeit smaller in size compared to Sari Deula. event initiated by India. Representatives of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Mauritius, Nepal, Seychelles and Sri Lanka participated. Modi made a slew of other suggestions, including the creation of an air ambulance agreement and a platform for collating, compiling and studying data about the effectiveness of Covid vaccines among the population. Recalling how a Covid-19 Emergency Fund was created last year by the SAARC member states, he sought cooperation for rapid deployment of vaccines. All countries, including Pakistan, supported Modi’s proposals, said sources. They suggested a structured discussion for regional cooperation on these proposals to take them forward. All countries, except Pakistan, thanked India and Modi for vaccine supply, and of medicines, equipment and training in the past. Base of a temple behind Sari Deula exposed by archaeologists | Express Mystery shrouds death of 2 UP girls, 3rd critical N a m i ta B a j pa i @ Lucknow Two Dalit girls died while their sister was battling for life at a Kanpur hospital after they were found unconscious, with their hands tied, on their farm in Uttar Pradesh’s Unnao district on Wednesday . Police said the three girls were rushed to a community health centre (CHC), where two — aged 13 and 15 — of them were declared dead on arrival. The third girl, aged 17, was referred to the Regency Hospital in Kanpur, where she remains on life support. Regency Hospital official Paramjit Arora said: “On the basis of her medical checkup and condition, the doctors have called it a suspected case of poisoning. No external injury has been found on her body. Her condition is stable.” Meanwhile, the autopsy report of the two girls, too, ruled out physical or sexual assault and suggested poisoning as the cause of death. A threedoctor panel, which conducted the postmortem, has sent the samples of the girls’ viscera for chemical examination. According to Unnao SP Anand Kulkarni, the three girls had left their home around 3 pm on Wednesday to gather fodder. When they did not return till 9:30 pm, the family launched a search. The searchers found the girls lying unconscious in the field, their hands tied and frothing from their mouths. Their limbs were tied with a dupatta belonging to one of P8 the girls.
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