HYDERABAD WEDNESDAY JULY 28, 2021 `7.00 PAGES 16 LATE CITY EDITION MENTAL HEALTH ISSUE FORCES SIMONE BILES TO WITHDRAW The 24-year-old four-time Olympic champion pulls out during the team ﬁnal to protect the US team and self on Tuesday SIMONE BILES WANTS TO FOCUS ON WELLBEING Biles, widely expected to star in the Games, was in tears when she addressed the media after Russian Olympic Committee won the final. "At the end of the day, I have to do what's right for me and focus on my mental health and not jeopardise my health and my wellbeing," she said. She went backstage with a trainer but came out later to support the team ■ 1992 UNDECIDED FOR THURSDAY'S EVENT ■ The athlete, who said she was inspired by the likes of Naomi Osaka, is yet to make a decision on taking part in Thursday's allaround individual final Japan Olympics face Noami Osaka crashes out of tennis event; Carissa Moore and Italo Ferreira win gold in debut sport of surfing FIRST GOLD WON BY RUSSIA IN THIS EVENT | P11, 12 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 EXPRESS READ INTER-STATE TENSION Assam says commandos will man the Mizo border A day after the bloody clash along the Assam-Mizoram border killed five Assam policemen and one civilian, the Assam government on Tuesday announced its plan to deploy 4,000 commandos to man the sensitive border. “We are raising three commando battalions to protect our land in Cachar, Karimganj and Hailakandi districts. They will have a combined strength of 4,000 personnel. We don’t want others to encroach upon our land,” Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma told journalists at Silchar in Assam’s Cachar district. The CM added that the state government would move the SC for status quo on the border areas. Meanwhile, the Congress decided to send a fact-finding team to the troubled spot | P8 NOT THIS YEAR BJP goes for legacy, Lingayat, BSY loyalist Basavaraj Bommai will take oath of office and secrecy at 11 am today; his elevation shows Yediyurappa grip on state unit affairs FATHER-SON DUO IN THE HIGH OFFICE Basavaraj Bommai will be the second father-son duo to occupy the chief minister’s post in Karnataka. His dad S R Bommai was chief minister for eight months during 1988-1989. The other fatherson duo from the state to occupy the chair are H D Deve Gowda and his son Kumaraswamy A N U S H A R A V I @ Bengaluru THE tears he shed as he announced his resignation on Monday ensured B S Yediyurappa got his man — Basavaraj Bommai — the top job on Tuesday. Bommai, who joined BJP in 2008, was unanimously elected leader of the BJP Legislature Party . None other than Yediyurappa proposed Bommai’s name, which was backed by Deputy Chief Minister Govind Karjol. Bommai left behind other contenders like Murugesh Nirani, Arvind Bellad and C T Ravi to grab the top post. Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan, who was sent as an observer to the legislature party meet by the BJP Parliamentary Board, announced Bommai as the next chief minister. “This is a big responsibility . Under the guidance of chief minister (sic) B S Yediyurappa, I will give a pro-people government. I will strive hard for the welfare of farmers, poor, downtrodden, labourers and backward classes. Management of Covid and floods will be my priority I will make an honest ef. fort to implement all the schemes announced in our budget,” said Bommai soon after his election. He along with senior leaders, Framing of contentious CAA rules deferred again The Citizenship Amendment Act won’t be implemented at least till January next year as the Union home ministry has sought yet another extension to frame rules for the law, which was notified on December 12, 2019. Junior home minister Nityanand Rai told the Lok Sabha on Tuesday that the Centre has sought extension till January 9. He was replying to a question from Congress MP Gaurav Gogoi on whether the government had missed the deadline to frame and notify CAA rules and the steps taken in this context. While Constitutional experts say the rules need to be framed within six months of getting President’s nod, it is for the fifth time that the government has sought extension for the framing of the rules | P8 VIRUS CONCERN Covid cases rising: 54 dists have TPR above 10% Over the past week, the number of districts with Covid19 test positivity rate (TPR) above 10% has shot up from 46 to 54 while over 20 districts have reported a notable spike in daily cases, the Union health ministry said on Tuesday, terming it “an area of concern” Addressing media persons, Lav Agarwal, joint secretary in the Union health ministry, said seven districts in Kerala, five in Manipur, three in Meghalaya and two in Maharashtra have been showing a rising trend in Covid-19 cases over the past one month. There are 62 districts where over 100 cases are reported every day. ““Overall if we look from a global perspective, the pandemic is far from over. There is a noticeable increase in the number of cases across the world,” said Agarwal | P7 FORMER CBI SPECIAL DIRECTOR Rakesh Asthana is new Delhi Police commissioner Former CBI official Rakesh Asthana has been appointed Delhi Police Commissioner. Asthana, who was special director in the CBI in 2017, was removed in 2018 and was made the chief of the Border Security Force. He courted controversy with his public feud with the then CBI chief Alok Verma and was subject to investigation in a bribery case. He got a clean chit in February 2020. The 1984-batch IPS officer from Gujarat cadre was to retire as director-general of BSF on July 3. He will now get a one-year tenure as Delhi police chief JAB-O-METER TAKE YOUR SHOT July 26 57,48,692 doses July 27 36,87,239 doses TOTAL: 44,58,39,699 NATIONWIDE JULY 26 A N U R A D H A S H U K L A @ New Delhi Prime Minister Narendra Modi with West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee during their meeting in New Delhi | PTI Country will lead Oppn, we’ll follow, claims Didi CHAI PE CHARCHA “Congress Chairperson Sonia Gandhi has called me for a chai pe charcha,” Mamata said. He schedule for Wednesday had a meeting with party MPs followed by high tea with media. The meeting with Sonia is at 4.30 pm after which she will meet Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal ADVANCE PLANNING On the need to expedite an Opposition coalition, she said, planning has to be done in advance. “Like there is election in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Tripura. Like how it happened in Tripura with our boys and the issue of Dainik Bhaskar,” she said EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi WEST Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday exuded confidence that a united Opposition will take shape in the run up to the 2024 Lok Sabha polls. On her first trip to the national capital after winning the West Bengal Assembly elections, so as to catalyse early unity among Opposition parties and project herself as its natural leader, she, however, said: “Opposition unity will take shape on its own.” Fobbing off media’s questions on her leading the Opposition coalition, she said, “The country will lead the Opposition, we are the followers.” Mamata’s first big-ticket meeting on Tuesday was with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, after which she met a few Congress leaders. She has already lined up meetings with NCP patriarch Sharad Pawar and a ‘chai pe charcha’ with Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, apart from meeting her party’s members of Parliament. During the 45-minute meeting with Modi, Mamata claimed she discussed the Covid situation in West Bengal and de- E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Jagtial 35,968 42,363 416 415 TELANGANA JULY 26 JULY 27 Fresh cases 638 645 Recoveries Deaths 715 3 manded more vaccines and medicines for the state. “I had asked for an appointment from the PM... This was a courtesy visit. Post election, following the protocol we have to meet the PM once. But I also spoke about the Covid situation. I asked him to ensure that West Bengal gets enough vaccine doses. I am not against giving vaccines to other states, but considering the population of Bengal, we need more doses,” she later told the media. She also raised the pending issue of change of name of the state, to which the prime minister said ‘he will see’, Mamata later informed. While Mamata parried questions on raising the Pegasus snoopgate with Modi, she demanded that the prime minister convene an all-party meet to discuss the issue, which has paralysed Parliament. She also sought a Supreme Court-monitored probe into the spyware, though a day earlier she set up a probe panel led by retired SC judge Madan Lokur into it. The Congress leader she met were Kamal Nath, Anand Sharma and Abhishek Singhvi. Nath claimed he had called on her to congratulate her for her poll victory . Global growth at 6% THE International Monetary Fund (IMF) has cut India’s economic growth forecast by three percentage points to 9.5% for the current fiscal from its earlier projection of 12.5%, citing “lack of access to vaccines” and chances of a third Covid wave. “Growth prospects in India have been downgraded following the severe second Covid wave during March–May and expected slow recovery in confidence from that setback,” IMF said in the latest edition of its World Economic Outlook report, released on Tuesday . For the next fiscal, however, IMF’s global growth forecast for 2021 calendar year remained unchanged at 6% as upgrades in the developed world were offset by downgrades in countries that experienced renewed Covid waves, notably India Stranded TS students seek return to Italy R I D H I M A G U P TA @ Hyderabad SCORES of students from the city and the State studying in Italian universities are stranded here, unable to return to Italy due to the travel restrictions i m p o s e d by t h e I t a l i a n government. Stuck in a limbo, students have expressed fears over their residence permits getting expired, missing classes and losing their part-time jobs in Italy due to the travel ban. They have urged the government to help them get back to Italy . Around the time when the second wave of Covid-19 began in India, many people, including students, returned to the city to be with their families. On April 28, Italy imposed travel restrictions to and from the country Since then, many stu. dents are stuck in the city . M Rouf, a student at Sapienza University of Rome who arrived in India just days before the travel ban was clamped, has been trying in vain to return to P4 Italy for months now. Sand smugglers attack cops with boulders, shovels 39,361 26,689 Recoveries Deaths tions are being worked out. “It will be my priority to implement all schemes announced by our senior-most leader Yediyurappa,” Bommai told reporters outside Raj Bhavan as Yediyurappa put his arm around Bommai’s shoulders. Bommai’s elevation is being seen as Yediyurappa having a concrete say in party affairs. Bommai and Ashoka have been his go-to ministers in the cabinet over the last two years. Yediyurappa’s preference for Bommai has been noticed time and again with the latter’s appointP5 ment to important posts. IMF cuts India’s GDP growth forecast JULY 27 Fresh cases Outgoing chief minister B S Yediyurappa (R) congratulating successor Basavaraj Bommai, after his election, in Bengaluru on Tuesday | VINOD KUMAR T including Yediyurappa, met Gover nor T haawarchand Gehlot late on Tuesday evening. Bommai will take oath as chief minister at 11 am on Wednesday A complete revamp of . the cabinet is on the cards and Bommai is expected to have a new team of deputy CMs and ministers. Party sources said that R Ashoka, Sriramulu and Govind Karjol could become deputy CMs, while the fate of other two other Deputy CMs Dr CN Ashwath Narayan and Laxman Savadi hangs in balance as new combinations for regional and caste equa- 729 4 A mob of sand smugglers attack a policeman after being caught red-handed, on Monday in Mallapur mandal of Jagtial district; (right) injury sustained by one of the cops IN a shocking incident, a probationary sub-inspector (SI) of police and his staff sustained injuries when a mob of sand smugglers attacked them at Vemapalli in Mallapur mandal of Jagtial district late on Monday night. The police received information that sand was being smuggled out of the Godavari basin, upon which probationary SI M Venkatesh and three constables, rushed to the spot. As the sand was being carried away, the team intervened, and questioned the people working there regarding their identities. Then, the 100-member strong mob at the spot attacked the police with boulders and shovels. “Most of the mobsters seemed to be in an inebriated condition and began attacking us without listening to what we were saying,” an injured constable said. On learning about the incident, Metpally DSP Md Ghouse Baba, along with additional forces, rushed to the spot but by then, the mobsters had fled. The police seized the tractor which was being used. The DSP said 10 of the mobsters had been arrested and a hunt was on to arrest the rest of them. He warned of stringent action against sand smugglers. consisting of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam, where recent infection waves are causing a drag on activity”. The US is expected to register a 7% growth this year, a sharp reversal from last year’s 3.5% drop and an upgrade from the 6.4% growth the IMF had forecast for 2021 back in April. “Faster-than-expected vaccination rates and return to normalcy have led to upgrades, while lack of access to vaccines and renewed waves of Covid-19 cases in some countries, notably India, have led to downgrades,” said Gita Gopinath, chief economist, IMF. the IMF has forecast an 8.5% growth for India, 160 basis points higher than its April forecast. “Steady recovery is not assured anywhere so long as segments of the population remain susceptible to the virus and its mutations,” the IMF said. It added “similar dynamics are at work in the ASEAN-5 group, No. of death certificates issued by NMC in 2020-21 April May June July August September October November December January February March Total 41 137 309 230 337 389 242 374 498 48 186 196 2,987 NOS. TELL THE STORY The number of deaths generally show a substantial rise during periods most affected by the pandemic No. of death certificates issued by NMC in 2021 April May June Total 211 569 769 1,459 No. of death certificates issued, financial year-wise, by NMC 2017-18 1,620 2018-19 1,670 2019-20 2,278 2020-21 2,987 2021-22 (in progress) 1,549 2ND WAVE CAUSED 3-FOLD RISE IN DEATHS IN N’BAD D O N I TA J O S E @ Hyderabad THE first wave of Covid-19 may have spared the districts of Telangana, but that wasn’t the case with the second wave, which tore into the towns and villages beyond GHMC limits. An RTI filed by Express seeking the number of death certificates issued by the Nizamabad Municipal Cor poration (NMC) shows a three-fold increase in deaths during three months of second wave, as compared to the previous years. In 2020, during three months from April to June, 487 deaths were reported. This increased to a whopping 1,549 deaths during the same three months in 2021, when the second wave peaked in the State, indicating a threefold increase in deaths. The number of deaths registered in these three months from 2017 to 2020 does not show too much variance. In 2017, 398 deaths were recorded, 392 in 2018, 519 in 2019 and 487 in 2020. The increase in number of deaths during the three months from August to October in 2020, when the first wave was at its peak in Telangana, is not as pronounced as it was during the second wave. During these months, there were 404 deaths in 2017, followed by 370 in 2018, 635 in 2019 and 968 in 2020. While the second wave brought about a three-fold increase in deaths from the earlier year, the increase by the first wave between 2019 and 2020 is merely about 1.5 times. Though not all these deaths were a result of Covid-19, the pandemic did play a major role in causing abnormally high number of deaths, both directly and indirectly Lack of . access to non-Covid services during a pandemic, undiagnosed Covid deaths and black fungus cases would have added to the tally . Nizamabad was an epicentre of Covid during April and May this year. While it is only one town of one district, it is a microcosm showing the spread of Covid-19.
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