WARANGAL WEDNESDAY MARCH 24, 2021 `7.00 PAGES 12 CITY EDITION INDIA SKIPS VOTE ON UNHRC RESOLUTION ON SRI LANKA However, the resolution was adopted at the United Nations body as it garnered the support of 22 of the 47 member states INDIA ASKS LANKA TO EMPOWER TAMILS Eleven members voted against the resolution titled ‘Promotion of Reconciliation Accountability and Human Rights in Sri Lanka’ tabled by the Core Group on Sri Lanka consisting of countries such as the UK, Canada and Germany. India, however, reiterated its demand to devolve political power to Tamils in Sri Lanka including holding early polls to provincial councils ■ 14 GLOBAL PRESSURE TO PROBE WAR CRIMES ■ The resolution calls upon the Sri Lankan government to ensure thorough and impartial investigation on all its alleged war crimes The resolution was moved after a scathing report released by the UN rights watchdog in January warned that Colombo’s lack of accountability increased the risk of war crimes COUNTRIES, INCLUDING INDIA, ABSTAINED FROM VOTING ON THE SRI LANKA RESOLUTION 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 I-T raids on realty firms in Hyd, Bhongir EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Hyderabad SLEUTHS of the Income Tax department carried out searches at the offices of several real estate firms operating out of Hyderabad and Bhongir in Yadadri district, following inputs that they had evaded payment of income tax. The firms where the IT sleuths made searches included one owned by a politician from Alair in Yadadri Bhongir district. Another firm is located at LB Nagar in the city which is developing ventures in Yadadri Bhongir district. IT officials also conducted searches at the residences of the directors and the offices of their subsidiary firms. The searches which began in the early hours of Tuesday continued till late night and important documents related to the financial transactions, electronic evidence including hard discs in the computers and other incriminating material was seized. 3 STUDENTS JUMP TO DEATH IN HYDERABAD In three separate incidents reported in the last 24 hours, three students killed themselves by jumping from buildings in Hyd PAGE 3 SC ends moratorium interest riddle Rules compound interest during grace period be waived; asks banks to refund amounts collected EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE THE Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that compound interest on loans of all borrowers between March and August 2020 will be fully waived. This is nothing but a fiscal stimulus bearing an SC imprint and is, strangely, effective retrospectively It may also be . the first time interest-on-interest is being waived uniformly which , will cost the exchequer `15,000 crore. Of this, the Centre had presumably spent `5,500 crore. Hearing a batch of petitions, a Centre hasn’t walked the talk, says KTR Hyderabad: Minister for IT and Industries KT Rama Rao on Tuesday flayed the Centre for its lack of support towards industrial development in Telangana over the past six years, despite assuring the same under the AP Reorganisation Act | P4 CAA implementation not before July New Delhi: The BJP’s key poll plank of implementing the Citizenship Amendment Act is still far from being a reality. It will take at least another four months to become applicable. The CAA was notified on December 12, 2019 | P7 to extend the moratorium period beyond August 2020 Last October, the Centre agreed to waive interest-on-interest component for retail and small business loans up to `2 crore for six months. The benefit was extended to MSMEs, education loans, housing loans, loans ‘FISCAL POLICIES NOT AMENABLE TO JUDICIAL REVIEW’ Noting that policy decisions are better left to the government and regulators, the bench said economic policies are not amenable to judicial review and court can’t interfere unless there are malafides and arbitrariness for consumer durables, credit card dues, auto loans, personal and professional loans and consumption loans. The waiver will now be extended to all borrowers, including large industries. Any amount collected as compound interest shall be adjusted to the next instalments payable. The SC also lifted asset standstill on loans. This means, banks are now free to classify loans as bad if they deemed so and make recoveries. It is estimated the NPAs will swell by `1.3 lakh to P10 `8.5 lakh crore. TOUGH STANCE Vax eligibility for 45+ from next month S U M I S U K A N YA D U T TA @ New Delhi THE Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday approved Covid-19 vaccination for all citizens above 45 years across the country beginning April 1, adding an estimated 18-19 crore people to the beneficiary list. By expanding the ambit, about 30% of the India’s 1.3 billion population can expect to shield themselves against the pandemic. The vaccines can be taken free 40,715 of cost in government hospitals or by paying `250 per dose in private facilities. “I appeal to every citizen who is 45 or above to register for vaccination,” Union information and broadcasting minister Prakash Javadekar said after the Cabinet meeting. “This decision has been taken by the Cabinet on the basis of the advice of the coronavirus task force and experts,” he said, assuring there is enough supply of New cases across India, 80.9% of which are from Maharashtra, Punjab, Karnataka, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh and TN vaccine to ensure immunisation of all eligible beneficiaries. The expansion of the vaccination drive comes in wake of what looks like a second wave of the pandemic in several states with chief ministers of Maharashtra, Delhi and Punjab, asking the Centre to let all above 40 or 45 years take the jab. So far, nearly 4.85 crore across categories have got the shots, of whom about 80 lakh have completed the two dose regimen. 202.3 Case doubling time on March 23 as against 504.4 on March 1 TS shuts schools, colleges as Covid-19 rages again E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @Hyderabad EXPRESS READ three-judge bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan refused to allow a complete waiver of interest on loans, which the government pegged at `6 lakh crore. Such a sum could charge the earth and seriously impact the financial health of a string of banks. The SC also refused ALL educational institutions in the State, except for medical colleges, will be temporarily closed from Wednesday due to a spike in Covid-19 cases. Education Minister P Sabitha Indra Reddy made a statement to this effect in the Legislative Assembly on Tuesday . The decision was taken in the wake of students in several educational institutions testing positive for Covid-19 of late. “Covid-19 is spreading again in country Same is the case with the . neighbouring states. Sporadic cases of Covid-19 have also been reported in educational institutions in the State. The government is of the opinion that sporadic cases could again explode into a pandemic if teaching and non-teaching activities continue on a mass scale,” the Education Minister said. She stated that educational institutions have been closed in Ut- tar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh and other states. Sabitha said that parents were apprehensive following the rise in Covid cases. “We have received requests from parents to close the educational institutions in the state temporarily Keeping the health of teachers . and students in mind, the government took a decision to close all the institutions temporarily in order to prevent the further spread of Covid-19,” she said. Except for medical colleges, all hostels, Gurukul schools, government and private institutions would be closed, the Minister said. She, however, added that online classes would continue as usual. She appealed to people to cooperate with the government in preventing the spread of Covid-19 and wear masks compulsorily. She also urged citizens to maintain social distancing and sanitise frequently . A woman prepares to undergo a Covid test in Hyderabad | VINAY MADAPU Gandhi may reduce non-Covid services Sending alarm bells ringing, Telangana reported 412 cases of Covid-19 on Monday, indicating that tough days are ahead. Highly placed sources said that in Gandhi Hospital, which was once the nodal Covid-19 treatment hospital, a close watch is being kept on admissions of critical Covid cases and accordingly reduce the number of non-Covid-19 elective cases and surgeries | P5 6 areas in Hyd report high caseload Over the last week, the following six areas in Hyd district reported a high caseload of Covid-19 virus Andhra Mahila Sabha area Doodhbowli Aghapura Chintal Basti Golconda Ameerpet Officials say prevalence of hostels and shared accommodation spaces in these areas is the main reason for Covid clusters We have received requests from parents to close the educational institutions in the state temporarily. Keeping the health of teachers and students in mind, the government took a decision to close all the institutions temporarily in order to prevent the further spread of Covid-19 P Sabitha Indra Reddy, Education Minister We are planning to increase vaccinations in the district. At present there are about 77 vaccination centres in Hyderabad, which will increase in the next few days Dr J Venkati, DMHO, Hyderabad HC GIVES DGP 2 WEEKS TO FILE STATUS REPORT ON LOAN APPS ISSUE E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Hyderabad THE Telangana High Court granted two more weeks time to State Director General of Police to file a fresh status report regarding action taken against the organisers of online and mobile instant loan apps for harassing borrowers and others who are being charged interest rates ranging from 150 to 450 per cent on weekly and fortnightly basis. A division bench of the court, comprising Chief Justice Hima Kohli and Justice B Vijaysen Reddy recently , dealt with the PIL filed by advocate S Kalyan Dileep seeking direction to the State and Central governments to forthwith impose ban on all the illegal instant loan apps and for closure of all kinds of illegal call centre operations in Telangana. On an earlier occasion, the bench took a serious view at these instant loan apps and directed the DGP to take steps to identify the guilty and initiate Cops block steps ensuring to block such loan lend- 45 apps ing apps at the earliest. The bench also Special counsel directed the DGP and police commisfor Telangana, A sioners of Hyderabad, Cyberabad and Sanjeev Kumar Rachakonda to file their individual aftold the court fidavits relating to cases in their that police have jurisdiction. so far blocked Special counsel for Telangana, A about 45 loan Sanjeev Kumar told the court that the lending apps police commissioners of Hyderabad and have and Rachakonda have filed their rearrested three ports in the case. The DGP is yet to file accused, his report. including one The police have so far blocked about Chinese woman, 45 loan lending apps and have arrested during police three accused, including one Chinese raids on call woman, during police raids on call cencentres tres and other places. Investigation is still in progress, he added. Petitioner Kalyan Dileep submitted that a borrower, Vani has recently ended her life due to harassment by the organisers of a loan app. The petitioner urged the court to pass a general order on the issue in the interest of the public. Refusing to consider the petitioner’s plea, the bench granted two more weeks time to the DGP for filing his report covering entire State and posted the matter to April 15 for further hearing. VIRAL VIDEO ‘Friendly policing’ unmasked as Sadashivpet cops thrash cabbie EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Sangareddy FIERY PREPARATION Workers make Gathis (garlands of sugary sweets) ahead of Holi festival in Hyderabad on Tuesday | VINAY MADAPU JUST as a leopard does not change its spots, the State’s “friendly police” too demonstrated their brutality by beating up a hapless cab driver black and blue in broad daylight at Sadashivpet in Sangareddy district on Monday . Though the two policemen who thrashed the cab driver tried to keep the incident under the wraps, netizens who shot the disturbing incident on their mobile phones posted videos of the same on social media platforms on Tuesday . The victim has been identified as Mohammad Javeed, a resident of Malchel village of Mominpet mandal in Vikarabad district. According to sources, the incident occurred when the officials were conducting routine vehicle checks on the outskirts of Sadashivpet. Javeed was on his way to Singur when the policemen stopped him. Assuming that halting the vehicle in the middle of the road might create a traffic jam, he moved the car a little further to park it by the roadside. Enraged by this, constable Ramulu and home guard Balaraju pulled Javeed out of the car and punched him and kicked him around even as the people watched in shocked silence. An eye witness said he was taken aback to see the police kicking the victim. “Even if he did something wrong, there is a law to award punishment. In this case, he didn’t commit any crime. He took the vehicle a little forward and stopped it avoid a traffic snarl. How can the police beat up citizens? Who has given them authority to use force against law abiding citizens,” he asked. As indignant netizens took to social media to lash out at the police for their display of muscle power, district Super- Cab driver Javeed crouches in pain as a policeman kicks him intendent of Police S Chandrasekhar Reddy placed the two policemen, Constable Ramulu and Homeguard Balaraju, under suspension. The Superintendent of Police also attached Sadshivpet ASI Durgaiah and another constable Prasad to the district police headquarters, for remaining mute spectators to the entire incident.
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