STATES CRACK THE WHIP DELHI Is witnessing the fourth wave of Covid-19 infection Fourth wave seems less serious than previous ones as there are fewer deaths and Govt not planning hospitalisations, a lockdown as says CM Arvind of now Kejriwal TIRUNELVELI l saturday l april 03, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 14 l CITY EDITION MAHARAShTRA 47,827 cases across state, 8,832 in Mumbai on Friday l Eateries, bars and restaurants in Pune district KARNATAKA ordered to be shut for seven days from Saturday School hostels, l Will order complete lockdown across state if situation gyms, club doesn't improve in 2 days, says CM Uddhav Thackeray houses and l Children and youngsters constitute 47% of new cases pools shut 2nd wave fast-n-furious, 10 states fighting infection explosion SU M I SU K AN YA DUTTA @ New Delhi At least 10 states are fighting the fresh Covid-19 wave, according to government data. The second wave, which started in February in a handful of states led by Maharasthra, has now spread to more states. Till last month, it was Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Punjab, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat that were riding the second wave of the pandemic. But now, four more states — Madhya Pradesh, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana — are showing alar ming growth rates in active cases. Worryingly, the seven-day moving average of the test positivity rate, which is 6.3% nationally is seen rising in some , states including West Bengal, Odisha, Rajasthan, Bihar, Uttarakhand and Jharkhand. Over the past 24 hours, the country has recorded 81,466 new cases taking the cumula- tive active cases to 6,14, 696 — the highest since October. In the past 21 days, cases have zoomed from 18,377 (March 10) to 81,466 (April 1). In the first wave, which peaked in September last year, daily cases had jumped from 18,000 to 80,000 plus in 65 days. Trends suggest India may soon surpass the peak of 93,277 cases recorded on September 17. Not just infections, Covid deaths are also rising. For more than a week now, the daily death count has been above 200. On April 1, this number touched a whopping 469. Experts say the second wave could be more intense than the first one. The oft-cited reason for the infection explosion is the relaxed, careless behaviour by public and lax health administration. However, the role of mutant virus in driving the transmission is also under investigation. According to Union health ministry data, eight states -Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Kar nataka, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh -- have shown a steep rise in cases. As much as 81.25% of the new cases are from these eight states. P10 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 Modi promises med colleges I-T raids houses of Stalin’s kin, other DMK leaders in 1 out of every 3 dists in TN E X P R E SS N E W S S E R V I C E @ Chennai/Karur/Thanjavur/Vellore/ Puducherry/Tiruvannamalai Says medical and technical courses will be taught in local languages Shobana Radhakrishnan @ Madurai Madurai will get a state-of-theart All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Prime Minister Narendra Modi promised on Friday. Besides this, medical colleges will be set up at one in three districts of Tamil Nadu, more UG and PG seats will be offered, and medical and technical courses will be taught in local languages, he asserted. Modi made these promises during a public meeting of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) at Amma Thidal here. Sharing the dais with Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam and other leaders, he began his campaign for the elections by chanting “Vetri Vel Veera Vel”. Alleging that the Congress and DMK have mastered the art of not working but spreading lies about those who work, he Four days ahead of the elections, the Income Tax (I-T) department on Friday raided the houses of DMK leaders across the State. This prompted the party to seek the Election Commission’s intervention, saying the BJP-led Central government is misusing the department to “threaten” it. e x p ress read Heat wave in TN, temp 4-60 C above normal BJP functionaries from Madurai present a picture of Meenakshi Amman Temple to Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to the city on Friday | kk sundar said, “One example is the issue culture, but their actions conof AIIMS. Despite being in pow- tradict their words, he alleged, er for many years, they didn’t and added: “In 2011, the UPA even think of bringing AIIMS to came to power in Delhi. The Madurai. It was our government same UPA government banned that did it.” Modi added jallikattu. A UPA leader that the project would eneven called it a barbaric sure quality healthcare practice. In 2016, the TN for people of the region. Congress manifesto called The DMK and Confor a ban on jallikattu. gress pretend to be the They should be ashamed DAyS TO GO only custodians of Tamil of it.” Continued on P4 3 Chennai: As many as 27 districts in Tamil Nadu are under the grip of a heat wave, with maximum temperatures likely to be 4-6 degree Celsius above normal. On Friday, Chennai recorded temperatures above 40 degrees. Ashwin Prasath The I-T department said the raids pertained to “handling of cash of politically exposed persons for the ongoing elections”, and added that “several incriminating materials” have been found. The searches were still underway late on Friday . Among the houses raided were those of party chief MK Stalin’s daughter Senthamarai in Chennai, Karur constituency candidate V Senthil Balaji in Rameswarapatti, DMK union MK Stalin’s daughter Senthamarai’s house in Chennai | Aadittheesh Murali s e c re t a r y S M u r a s o l i i n Thanjavur, and MP CN Annadurai at Devanampattu village. Taking to Twitter, Stalin wrote: “The BJP, as usual, is abusing its power as their defeat is sure since there is no support from the public. We are not AIADMK to fall (at the BJP’s) feet for fear of intimidation. No fear. Let us boldly oppose. People will give you a clear answer to your mistakes on April 6”. Continued on P4 EC suspends five, orders booth repoll P r a s a n ta M a z u m d a r @ Guwahati The Election Commission on Friday suspended five polling personnel, including a presiding officer, and ordered repoll at a polling booth in Assam after a polling team, travelling with polled EVMs in a car registered in the name of a BJP MLA’s wife, was held hostage and allegedly attacked. A sub inspector of police tasked with escorting the polling party was also suspended for leaving them stranded and not ensur- ing their safe arrival at their destination. With the incident triggering a flutter, the EC explained it was raining heavily and the polling party of No 149 Indira MV School of Ratabari seat was returning with escorts when the vehicle broke down and got detached from the convoy While an alternative vehi. cle was being arranged, the polling party boarded a ‘passing vehicle’ without checking its ownership. When the car slowed down in the traffic at Kanaishil in Karimganj around 10 pm, it was surrounded by about 50 people who started pelting stones. The mob abused the officials and did not allow the car to pass, the EC said. The mob said the vehicle belonged to sitting MLA of Patharkandi and BJP candidate Krishnendu Paul, and alleged the EVMs were being taken to be tampered with. Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra lit into it, saying the EC needs to start acting decisively on these complaints.
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