kottayam l Sunday l april 04, 2021 l `12.00 l PAGES 52 l city edition Frontliner window closed Centre on Saturday said no fresh registration of frontliners will be allowed to prevent the misuse of provisions by ineligible people to jump the queue Sharp Spike ipl under covid scare 50% cases in 10 dists 89,129 cases recorded on Saturday 714 fatalities, the highest in over six months 47,913 cases reported from Maharashtra, followed by Karnataka (4,991) and Chhattisgarh (4,174) The last time such a high spike was reported was on September 20, 2020, when 92,605 infections were recorded in 24 hours 6,58,909 active cases on Saturday (5.32% of total infections) 10 Districts: Pune, Mumbai, Nagpur, Thane, Nashik, Bengaluru Urban, Aurangabad, Delhi, Ahmednagar and Nanded (50% of the total active caseload in the country) Problem states Maharashtra has shown a nine-fold jump in the number of active cases in the past two months In percentage terms, Punjab has reported the maximum increase in active cases Five states — Kerala, Maharashtra, Punjab, K’taka and Chhattisgarh — together account for 77.3% of the total active cases A raft of Covid-19 positives dampened the build-up to the next edition of the IPL, scheduled to begin on April 9. Here's a look at developments ■ ■ ■ ■ Axar Patel becomes second IPL player after Nitish Rana to test positive. Rana started training again on Saturday More than 15 others, including six event management officials, also test positive Organisers bringing in different set of groundstaff to tend to Wankhede Stadium after they also test positive Reports suggest Hyderabad kept as a back-up option to shift games but Mumbai to remain venue as of now | P10, 13 24,69,59,192 Samples tested for Covid-19 up to April 2 Eight states Maharashtra, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh account for 81.42% of single-day infections 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 announcement The cover price of The New Sunday Express has been revised to H12 with effect from April 04, 2021. — Editor Campaigning ends today Rahul to address meeting in Nemom Chennithala urges Shah says Congress & Communists confused voters to elect UDF for prosperous Kerala Comrade vs Captain: As poll nears, unease in CPM grows E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @Kochi/Kannur A man gives final touches to Easter eggs with a message on Covid in Mumbai on Saturday | PTI The New Indian Express wishes its readers a Happy Easter W ITH THIS ISSUE The Spirit is Willing PLUS 12 PAGES CHIEF Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s image as the unchallenged ‘captain’ of the party and the government, which has been the catchword of the LDF campaign for the assembly elections, is facing serious challenge from within the party as the campaign is nearing conclusion. Senior leaders including Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, E P Jayarajan and P Jayarajan — all hailing from Pinarayi’s home turf — have aired their displeasure, though indirectly, against painting him as the sole leader. In an interview, Kodiyeri had said that no one has been appointed as the ‘captain’ in the party E P Jayarajan, who . was considered the second-incommand in the government, had sarcastically said Pinarayi is a “great person possessing extraordinary energy” while announcing his exit from elec- Pinarayi Vijayan P Jayarajan toral politics. The latest salvo is fired by P Jayarajan, the Kannur strongman who was denied a seat in this election. Borrowing the words of Kodiyeri, Jayarajan said the party is the captain and all are comrades in the organisation. In a Facebook post that appeared in his official page on Saturday, he said it is the party and the Left that evoke people’s trust, not any individual. P Jayarajan’s remarks remind the political observers of the famous remark Pinarayi made at the CPM meeting in Thiruvananthapuram during the heydays of factionalism in the party Indirectly referring to . his archrival V S Achuthanandan’s popularity, Pinarayi quoted the anecdote of a child who was frustrated to see that there are no waves in the water he collected in a bucket from the sea. Pinarayi said the water has strength only when it is part of the dynamic sea. In the post, Jayarajan said people will show different forms of admiration when leaders are close to them. “Some will write songs, some will keep the leader’s photograph and others will do tattooing. But communists do not get immersed in the glorification of the individual,” he said. The post, giving Pinarayi the taste of his own medicine, points to the growing disenchantment in the party in Kannur against the “authoritarian trend” in the chief minister’s way of functioning, though it has not yet snowballed into an ● More on P5 open rebellion. Big guns’ loss, emergence of NDA in store A N I L S @ T’Puram SOME surprise results. Defeat of a few big guns. Emergence of saffron party as a force to reckon with. The polls this time could present us with a whole new scenario. Left could suffer setbacks in south and central Kerala. In Kundara, Fisheries Minister Mercykutty Amma is sweating KERALA against P C VishnuASSEMBLY ELECTIONS nath, as the deep-sea fishing row has created mistrust among a section of voters. In Kollam, many Left supporters are not confident about actor Mukesh’s chances. “Novelty factor works in favour of an actor when he/she is fielded for the first time, but the second time is all about performance. Bindu Krishna is giving Mukesh a tough fight,” a source said. UDF’s K M Shaji and Anil Akkara are under pressure in sitting seats Azhikode and Wadakkanchery, re● More on P5 spectively . 2021 hathras plot chargesheet filed against 8 PFI members N A M I TA B A J PA I @ Lucknow The Special Task Force (STF) of the Uttar Pradesh police on Saturday filed a 5,000-page chargesheet against eight members of Popular Front of India (PFI) in the Mathura additional district judge and sessions court on Saturday The court . has posted the matter for next hearing on May 1. Those named in the chargesheet include journalist Siddique Kappan, Atiqur Rehman, Rauf Sharif, Mohammad Danish, Alam, Masood Ahmad, Feroz Khan and Asad Badruddin. All the accused were charged with receiving `80 lakh from financial institutions in Muscat and Doha for fomenting unrest in UP The STF had ar. rested five PFI members, including Kappan, in Mathura on October 5, 2020, while they were on the way to Hathras allegedly to meet the family of a Dalit girl who was gangraped. The FIR against them said they were going to Hathras with an intention “to breach the peace” as part of a “conspiracy”. ● More on P10 Maoists kill five jawans in ambush Raipur: A fierce gun battle between ambushed security forces and Maoists left at least five personnel and two rebels dead in Chhattisgarh’s Bijapur district on Saturday. Around a dozen personnel were reported injured. Reinforcements were rushed to the site, but the forces were yet to return from the operation, Director General of Police D M Awasthi said. On Friday night, several parties of the security forces fanned out across the Bijapur-Sukma border on anti-Maoist operations based on intel inputs. The ultras ambushed one of the parties near Tarrem on Saturday noon, resulting in a nearly three hour exchange of fire. Two choppers and nine ambulances were rushed to Bijapur to aid the forces, officials said, adding bodies of two rebels had been recovered from the site.
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