SHIVAMOGGA SUNDAY MARCH 14, 2021 `8.00 PAGES 26 CITY EDITION BITCOIN BREAKS RECORDS, PRICE SOARS PAST `43 LAKH The cryptocurrency hit $60,197 (`43,75,675) on Saturday and continues to hover around $60K, according to CoinMarketCap VALUE TREBLES IN THREE MONTHS PROTOCOL BUILT ON BLOCKCHAIN Bitcoin has been on a meteoric rise since March last year, when it stood at $5,000, spurred by online payments giant PayPal saying it would allow account holders to use cryptocurrency. From $20,000 in December 2020, the digital currency has tripled in value over the past three months on the back of support from corporate heavyweights such as Tesla and Twitter ■ ■ Bitcoins are traded via a decentralised registry system known as a blockchain. The system requires massive computer processing power in order to manage and implement transactions That power is provided by “miners”, who do so in the hope they will receive new bitcoins for validating transaction data U.S. STIMULUS PACKAGE TRIGGERED THE LATEST BITCOIN RALLY, SAY EXPERTS 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 New draft policy puts heat on Amazon, Flipkart EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi PM Narendra Modi chairs BJP’s Central Election Committee meeting in New Delhi on Saturday. Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP president JP Nadda are also seen | PTI BJP weaponises defectors to pull Kerala Christians Final meeting of CEC clears lists for all the states, popular faces likely to get TN seats Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah, defence minister Rajnath Singh and other members. WITH the full-fledged election The BJP chief held a long campaign set to take off from meeting with Kerala leaders till Sunday, the BJP Central Elec- late on Friday evening. The tion Committee (CEC) on Sat- party plans to go aggressive in urday met to finalise names of the state with professionals and the remaining candidates in Christian leaders imported the poll-bound states. The CEC from the ranks of the Congress. meeting was preceded The meeting was atby two days of maratended by Shah, organthon meetings at the isational secretary B L residence of the party Santosh and other senBJP is keen to chief J P Nadda for ior functionaries. make base among each poll bound state. “All important leadChristians in The meeting contin- Kerala; party will ers, including a few Raued till late Saturday jya Sabha MPs, besides welcome key evening, with the par- leaders from the known faces in the ty leaning on turncoats community from state will contest the the ranks of the and known state faces Assembly elections,” Congress, with to contest elections, said a senior BJP whom informal While details of the functionary . communication meeting were not imIn Tamil Nadu, the has been going on mediately available, it BJP CEC is learnt to for a while is learnt the CEC aphave discussed the Senior BJP leader proved the lists of cannames of candidates didates for all pollfor 17 seats, with the bound states. The party is popular party faces likely to expected to release them in a contest. staggered manner in the comThe party will field a large ing days, leaving scope for a few number of turncoats from the last-minute changes to accom- ruling Trinamool Congress and modate important Opposition the Left in West Bengal, with leaders. party leaders arguing gaining The CEC meeting was chaired cadre strength with such imby Nadda and attended by ported leaders would be key in Prime Minister Narendra the polls. EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi IN a bid to check the alleged unfair business practices by large e-commerce players such as Amazon, Flipkart and e-Bay , the Centre on Saturday proposed that they desist from deploying algorithms to promote a select few sellers or offering deep discounts only to a small group of vendors. According to the draft e-commerce policy , all vendors registered on their platforms must be treated equally . While the draft policy seeks to tighten the noose around Wear mask properly or get off the plane: DGCA EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi AIR passengers who refuse to wear face masks properly or follow social distancing rules during a flight despite being warned repeatedly could be put on the no-fly list for a period ranging from three months to two years. These are part of the new guidelines issued by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation amid a rise in the number of cases across the country . Airlines have been instructed to deboard passengers who refuse to comply with Covid-19 rules before a flight takes off. India’s civil aviation rules for unruly passengers allow airlines to put people on a no-fly list for varying durations — three months for verbal abuse, six months for assault, and two years or more for life-threatening behaviour. A Delhi High Court judge had recently drawn up similar guidelines for callous fliers. Jarkiholi files complaint, woman seeks protection in video appeal M A N J U S H E T TA R @ Bengaluru OVER a week after he resigned from Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa’s Cabinet following an alleged sleaze CD controversy BJP , leader Ramesh Jarkiholi on Saturday filed a complaint against “unknown persons” for defaming him. Based on Jarkiholi’s complaint, a First Information Report (FIR) was registered for “putting a person in fear of injury for extortion and forgery”. , A police officer said former MLA Nagaraju, a confidant of Jarkiholi, registered the complaint on behalf of the former minister. Jarkiholi had sent a onepage complaint, signed by him, through Nagaraju. In his complaint, Jarakiholi alleged that a political conspiracy was hatched against him since three months and some people had made a fake CD to extort money from him, shared it with an activist, and it was also uploaded on social media. It is an act of blackmail, defamation, extortion and forgery he alleged. , HC says probe agencies can hack into smartphones, emails EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Bengaluru IN a ruling that could have far-reaching implications, the Karnataka High Court has said that an investigating agency is at liberty to engage a specialised agency whenever , required, to crack the login credentials — password, passcode or biometrics — and gain access to electronic devices or e-mail accounts of an accused if the person does not cooperate with the investigators even after a search warrant is obtained from a court. Expressing concern over the possibility of an e-mail account getting blocked automatically due to multiple use of wrong login credentials, deliberately provided by the accused, Justice Suraj Govindaraj laid down certain procedures to be followed by the investiP5 gating agencies. However, in a twist to the case, the woman in the purported video, released a statement hours after the FIR was registered. In her 34-second video statement to a private news channel, she claimed that she is not responsible for leak of the CD and she is innocent. “I request Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai to give protection to me and my family. I have no idea how the video was made and P7 released,” she claimed. large e-commerce players, it also offers several measures to safeguard consumer interest, counter misleading sales and regulate data usage. “Consumers have a right to be made aware of all relevant details about the goods and services offered for sale including country of origin, value addition in India, and any other such information which may be necessary for making an informed decision at the pre-purchase stage,” it said. According to a commerce ministry official, the policy will prevent monopoly by large WHAT’S IN THE DRAFT E-commerce players to make their discount policies transparent by explaining the basis of discount rates for different products and suppliers Govt to ensure availability of more service providers and stop digital monopolies misusing their dominant market position Companies to ensure products offered are genuine; liability for counterfeit products will be on the online firm and the seller To ensure that e-commerce is not used to defraud customers, registration with an authority identified by the government would be made mandatory Consumers have the right to know all relevant details about the goods and services offered for sale including country of origin, value addition in India, and any other such info which may be necessary for making an informed purchase decision e commerce companies like Amazon. “There have been many re- ports and complaints of these firms excluding sellers by denying them equal platform, re- COVID-19 GRAPH INCHING UPWARDS IN K’TAKA; NO 2ND WAVE YET, SAY EXPERTS EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Bengaluru WHILE Maharashtra and Kerala are seeing a big rise in the number of Covid-19 cases, Karnataka too has been recording sporadic spikes in daily new cases. Compared to January and February, the numbers have come down, but over the last four days, the state has again been recording a rise in cases. On Friday, 37 people tested positive in Kalaburagi district, including 22 from Kalaburagi city Shahbad town witnessed . the death of a patient. In Dharwad, one Covid-related death was reported on Friday after a long time. Tumakuru is recording an average of 37 cases daily over the last four days, with 42 new infections on Saturday alone. While Mandya district still has 26 active cases, there is worry about returnees from Maharashtra during festivals. Mysuru district too is recording over 50 new cases on some days. However, experts are not yet terming it a second wave in Karnataka, but emphasise that people should remain cautious. “It is unlikely that we are seeing a second wave in the state. The number of cases do CONTINUED ON: P3 B A L A C H A U H A N @ Bengaluru An under-construction house for protesting farmers adjacent the highway, at Tikri border in New Delhi on Saturday | PTI Protesting farmers booked for building structures at Delhi gates EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Chandigarh/New Delhi THE Haryana Police have booked farmers for allegedly constructing concrete structures and sinking a borewell near Singhu towards Kundli on National Highway-44. The Singhu border near Delhi is the venue where hundreds of farmers congregated in protest against the new farm laws for months. Sources said the state police have registered two separate cases under the National Highway Act and various sec- Solar panels to manage summer “This is just the beginning of summer. The government has not provided any power connection, so we are installing solar panels as as to be able to run small fans,” said a UP farmer tions of the IPC for building illegal structures on NH-44 in front of Malwa Motors, obstructing the highway, and digging a borewell in a field near KFC Mall that is close to the highway . However, Harinder Singh Lakhowal, general secretary of BKU (Lakhowal), said, “We are not constructing any permanent structure, but plan to install solar panels in order to save the far mers from P10 the summer.” Tiger in the estate! But wait... Forest dept sees ploy REMEMBER the grandma’s tale of a boy crying out about a wolf coming to attack a herd of sheep, and the villagers not believing him when it actually did? Something similar seems to be playing out in Kodagu these days. Locals and estate owners are making repeated calls to the Forest Department stating that they have seen pug marks or complaining about dogs barking at night on sighting a tiger. Some others even claimed to have seen a tiger. Acting on each call, foresters are deployed not signify that. There are three aspects to check is there is a second wave — severity of illness in Covid-19 patients, increase in positivity rate and increase in ICU care and oxygen support in hospitals. But right now, there is nothing to hint at a second wave. However, we have to keep a close watch on the small spikes in cases seen and bring it under control,” said Dr Anoop Amar nath, Head, Scientific Board and Chairman-Geriatric Medicine, Manipal Hospital. Back home, Disha pours her heart out CRYING WOLF B O S K Y K H A N N A @ Bengaluru fusing to provide transparency in data sharing and evading some of the foreign investment rules,” said an official. The official, who did not want to be named, added the proposed policy will be discussed with market players before rolling it out. The commerce ministry is likely to hold discussions on the rules next week, he added. The proposals are likely to ruffle foreign e-commerce majors’ feathers as they were already upset about the demand to pay additional 2% for revenue generated from Indian customers. to check, but in most cases, they are turning out to be hoax. After a close analysis of all the cases, the Forest Department has now realised that locals are making such calls so that the department staffers are deployed on their estates and their coffee and pepper crop is protected from thieves. “Calls about the presence of a tiger have become a daily affair. We get over 10-12 calls a day and none of them can be ignored, as it could be a probable lead. But 99 per cent of the times, it is fake. Since a call has been reported, it becomes mandatory to deploy staffers to check the estate for a few days, which is turning out to be a sort of free protection for the estate by the forest staffers,” commented a senior officer. The Forest officials are combing areas of south Kodagu for over a week looking for the elusive male tiger, which is said to have claimed three lives and killed many heads of cattle. The department has deployed over 100 staffers, along with darters, veterinarians, tranquilising experts and sharpshooters to catch the tiger. “Due to the repeated calls and tip-offs from locals, the operation is getting effected as a section of the staff has to be diverted. We are now working on getting more staff, where one team will carry out the scheduled plan and the other will act on the calls we receive.,” the official said. CLIMATE activist Disha Ravi returned to Bengaluru on Saturday, exactly a month after she was arrested by the Delhi police from her house in the City in the controversial toolkit case. She spoke to her family friend and advocate R Prasanna. “She told me that she wanted to put out a statement on social media. She sounded okay and comfortable in her skin,” said Prasanna. Disha later tweeted a fourpage statement on her Twitter handle on what she went through after her arrest. P4 EXPRESS READ Yashwant Sinha joins TMC ahead of elections Kolkata: Former Union minister Yashwant Sinha, a bitter critic of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi regime, on Saturday joined Trinamool Congress days ahead of the high-octane West Bengal assembly polls. WITH THIS ISSUE SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK PLUS 12 PAGES ANCIENT RELATIVES Sanganakallu museum in Ballari district throws light on prehistoric life | P2
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