BHUBANESWAR l sunday l july 18, 2021 l `12.00 l PAGES 24 l JEYPORE EDITION first positive case at the Olympic games village Rio Olympic silver medallist PV Sindhu leaving for Tokyo from the New Delhi international airport on Saturday | SAI Support the athletes: Bach urges locals Organisers confirmed that a resident tested positive for Covid on Friday. The person has been isolated and situation under control indian contingent leaves for tokyo IOC president Thomas Bach, who is already in Japan, urged the locals to “welcome these athletes here for the competition of their life. I would like once more to ask and to invite the Japanese people, humbly, to welcome and support the athletes from around the world.” The German also said fans could yet attend a few of the competitions if the situation improves ■ ■ The first batch of Indian athletes left for Tokyo from New Delhi late on Saturday. It included both hockey teams. Shooters who reached Saturday from Croatia, will begin training from Monday Rowers, sailors and weightlifter are already in Tokyo and have already started training as they have no quarantine protocols | P11 119 number of indian athletes who will be in action at the games 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 Hints at transition of power after completing 2 yrs; Big announcement likely at legislators’ meet on July 26 No change in leadership ‘for now’: BSY Anu s h a R a v i @ Bengaluru PUTTING on a brave face after his Delhi trip amid reports of his resignation as Karnataka CM, veteran BJP leader B S Yediyurappa on Saturday said the party asked him to continue ‘for now’. “I have been given the responsibility and I will work unitedly with everybody National leaders have asked me . to continue as CM and strengthen the party For now, there is no confusion,” . Yediyurappa told reporters. The past 48 hours were actionpacked, keeping the 78-year-old CM, his supporters as well as his baiters on their toes. Even as he denied reports of his quitting, Yediyurappa seems to have resigned his fate to the party’s de- cision reiterating he was asked to continue as CM “for now”. “Not at all. Not at all. Not at all,” he had said on Saturday morning when reports of his resignation started surfacing. But by evening, his pushback had lost its steam. Earlier in the day he , made back-to-back trips to meet BJP president Jagat Prakash Nadda, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, and Home Minister Amit Shah. “All leaders expressed their desire for BJP to return to power in the State. I assured them we will work together to build the party,” he said. His stance is in line with the party’s “amicable exit” strategy. In May this year, TNIE had reported on how BJP’s top leadership was looking for a smooth Karnataka CM B S Yediyurappa meets Home Minister Amit Shah in Delhi on Saturday transition of power in Karnataka and Yediyurappa seems to have finally come on board. Sources say Yediyurappa’s meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the last round of talks before making the shift in leadership official. They suggest Yediyurappa will step down after completing two years in office citing health reasons and will also help find his replacement. Yediyurappa is also said to have assured of his support in the upcoming elections so the party’s vote share does not take a beating. Party sources also say that Yedyurappa has been assured of his son’s safe future and a Governor’s post if he is willing to take it. Yediyurappa has called for a luncheon meeting of BJP legislators on July 26 when he completes two years in office. Big announcements are expected in the meeting. “There is no dearth of leadership in BJP he said, hinting that while he will ,” continue as chief minister for now, an alternative leader is in the making. Stormy Monsoon Session likely amid Oppn bid to corner govt on pandemic, inflation E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi The Monsoon Session of Parliament, starting Monday is likely to be a stormy , affair with the Opposition seeking to corner the Treasury benches on a host of issues, including inflation, fuel price rise, Covid-19 management, farmer agitation, constitution of the ministry of cooperatives among others. The agenda would be set during Sunday’s all-party meeting called by Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi to discuss key issues. The Opposition is expected to demand discussions on the handling of Covid-19 situation, rise in price, death Capt climbs down on Sidhu issue, gets his say in state Cong R i c h a S h a r m a & H a r p r ee t B a j w a @ New Delhi/Chandigarh Much to Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh’s displeasure, arch rival Navjot Singh Sidhu is expected to be named the new state Congress chief with AICC general secretary and trouble shooter Harish Rawat, after meeting Amarinder on Saturday saying the chief minister would , accept any decision taken by the party high command. However, Amarinder’s ostensible climbdown from Friday, when he wrote to party president Sonia Gandhi and strongly opposed Sidhu’s likely appointment, came only after the chief minister extracted his pound of flesh, according to those privy to the developments. Sources said the party will have two or three working presidents under Sidhu but the CM will have a say in their appointments, given a free hand in a cabinet reshuffle and the government’s running and he will also play a key role in the campaign committees for the assembly elections. The working presidents are likely to be from Malwa, Magha and Doaba regions of the state. Amarinder is also understood to have insisted that he would not meet Sidhu until the Congress MLA publicly apologises for his uncharitable comments on social media against the chief minister and criticism of the state government. Continued on: P8 of tribal activist Stan Swamy, controversial population control legislation by Uttar Pradesh government and Chief Justice of India’s comment on the sedition law. After the meeting, the leaders of the Opposition parties would get into a huddle to discuss coordination over key issues to be raised on the floor of the House. Rajya Sabha Chair man Venkaiah Naidu on Saturday held a meeting of floor leaders of various parties for coordination and seamless functioning of the Upper House. The floor leaders flagged issues needing detailed discussion during the session ending on August 13. “During the all-party meet on Sunday we will demand discussion , on various issues concerning people. The Opposition leaders will also meet informally for better coordination,” said Communist party of India general secretary D Raja. Congress chief Sonia Gandhi has already asked senior leader Mallikarjun Kharge, who is the Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, to reach out to other Opposition parties to garner support on common issues. The Congress will push for a joint parliamentary committee probe into the Rafale fighter jet deal, besides fuel price hike and Covid-19 vaccination delay . geopolitics US pilots new quad with Pak, Afghan & Uzbeks on board Pu s h k a r B a n a k a r @ New Delhi Amid escalating tension between Kabul and the Taliban, the US on Friday said it would be part of a new quadrilateral diplomatic platform, comprising Afghanistan, Uzbekistan and Pakistan, working towards interregional trade and long-term peace in the war-torn nation. However, analysts say the new quad may have far-reaching ramifications for China, Russia and India, forcing them to tailor their diplomacy to suit the emerging geopolitical situations. Russia-based American analyst Andrew Korybko said the bloc gives the view that Pakistan’s version of multialignment is more successful than India’s. “It makes the US a stakeholder in Pakistan’s stability which could lead to , the US putting pressure on India not to destabilise it through proxy Islamabad . accuses India of doing so despite New Delhi’s consistent denial,” he said. Washington could also have kept the Pakistan-Afghanistan-Uzbekistan railway line in mind while agreeing to form the quad to push its interests in the central Asian Republics. NATIONWIDE july 16 july 17 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 38,949 38,079 40,026 43,916 542 560 Manage china relations With the formation of the new block, Russia-based US analyst Andrew Korybko said it was imperative for India to manage its relations with China. “That doesn’t mean that India should move away from the US. It must improve its strategic negotiating leverage to avoid exploitation by the US and be its proxy against China,” he said A former diplomat said the formation of the ‘new quad’ was done keeping in mind China’s intentions to extend the Belt Road Initiative to Afghanistan. “If China manages to extend the BRI to Afghanistan, it can use Kabul as a strategic point to spread its influence across the world,” he said and added that it could help Russia in attaining its long-cherished goal of spreading its wings in the Indian Ocean region. Jab-o-meter Take your shot July 16 38,79,917 doses July 17 46,38,106 doses Total doses 40,44,67,526 odisha Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths july 16 july 17 2,070 2,182 2,317 2,400 64 67 Schools to reopen partially from July 26 E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar Despite the Covid situation continuing to be of concern in many districts, the State government on Saturday announced partial reopening of schools for Class X and XII from July 26. Offline classes will start for Class IX from August 16 and Class XI after September 15. The offline classes will be held with the revised syllabus that has been pruned by 30 per cent due to delay in commencement of the new academic session, said School and Mass Education Minister Samir Ranjan Dash. He said the decision to reopen schools was taken considering the problems faced by students in attending online classes. The school timing will be 10 am to 1.30 pm. No classes will take place on Sundays and government holidays. School and Mass Education Secretary Satyabrata Sahu said that online teaching will continue as usual and no student will be forced to attend classes in physical mode. A detailed standard operating procedure (SOP) has been issued for reopening of schools by all government, aided and private schools in the State. Students will attend schools/institutions only with the written consent of parents, the Secretary said. The State government also announced that for the first time the Board of Secondary Education will introduce a continuous and comprehensive evaluation system for Class IX and X from 2021-22 academic session. The government has decided not to open hostels at this time. It asked schools to discourage transport facilities to reduce risk and urged parents to take responsibility for the child’s P3 commute to schools. Pawar calls on modi NCP chief Sharad Pawar met with PM Narendra Modi at the latter’s residence on Saturday. Pawar raised concerns about the newly-formed Ministry of Cooperation during the meeting on “issues of national interest” . The meeting came ahead of the monsoon session amid reports of strains in Shiv Sena-led alliance in Maharashtra, of which NCP is a constituent | P8 e-Gov set for massive `332 cr OSWAN revamp boost E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar With the Covid-19 pandemic necessitating a significant long-term shift to digital modes of governance, the State Cabinet on Saturday decided to undertake massive upgradation of the Odisha State Wide Area Network (OSWAN) to improve government functioning at the districts and grassroots. The Cabinet presided by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik approved the Odisha State Wide Area Network (OSWAN) upg radation project to be executed at a cost of `332.09 crore. Stating that the existing OSWAN needs modernisation and replacement of old and end-of-life equipment, Chief Secretary SC Mohapatra said that it will be extremely crucial for ensuring effective governance by using the latest technology in data, voice and video transmission. It will include provisioning of secondary bandwidth at State, 30 district and 314 block headquarters for enhancement of high speed bandwidth, load sharing and uninterrupted connectivity . The Chief Secretary said it will WITH THIS ISSUE include use of multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) technology for better reliability and secure connectivity. OSWAN provides the State with a basic information technology backbone that is utilised for carrying data, video and voice traffic, facilitating inter/intra departmental communication and data sharing within the State. The Cabinet also approved the proposal for enacting a new law to upgrade the College of Engineering and Technology (CET), Bhubaneswar, into a non-affiliating Unitary University as Odisha University of Technology and Research (OUTR). The Chief Secretary said OUTR will provide facilities and opportunities for graduate and postgraduate education, PhD, research in the field of engineering, science and technology including information technol, ogy and its application, architecture and management through instruction, training, research, development and extension. The OUTR will serve as a centre for fostering cooperation and interaction between the academic, research community and industry . CONTINUED ON: P5 Guts and Glory PLUS 12 PAGES
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