THIRUVANANTHAPURAM l friday l july 30, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 16 l LATE city EDITION India in different quarters in Tokyo Top performances in archery, badminton, hockey raise nation’s hopes at Olympics Mary Kom reacts after loss on Thursday | AP | P11, 12 Men's hockey team, archer Atanu stun favourites Heartbreak for Mary Kom Men's hockey team beat defending champions Argentina 3-1 to march into quarters and archer Atanu Das stunned two-time Olympic champion Oh Jin Hyek from South Korea to enter pre-quarters. Rio Olympics silver medallist PV Sindhu also advanced to the quarters after beating Mia Blichfeldt. Satish Kumar, India’s first super heavyweight (+91 kg) to compete in the Olympics, in last eight after win ■ ■ Multiple world champion and London Olympic medallist Mary Kom lost her flyweight (51 kg) prequarterfinal bout against Colombia’s Ingrit Valenciaon. She said she did not realise she lost after winning last two of the three-round bouts Shooter Manu Bhaker is fifth after first stage of qualification 26 Number of Indians to participate in athletics from friday 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 27% OBC quota for med AIQ seats Centre rushes team to state as Covid cases rise alarmingly 10% reservation also carved out for the EWS category; applicable from this admission season S u m i S u k a n ya D u t ta @ New Delhi EVEN as the rapidly deteriorating Covid situation in Kerala has prompted the Centre to depute a six-member team to assist the state, it has also led to a flurry of theories on why the southern state seems to be in a mess of this scale, at a time when the rest of the country looks far better. Kerala, over the past two days, reported more than 50% of the country’s total Covid tally . On Thursday 22,064 contracted , the virus, taking the total active cases in the state to 1,54,820. The test positivity rate rose to 13.53%. Considering the scenario, the Union health ministry on Thursday announced that a six-member central team, led by National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) director S K Singh, is being rushed to the state. The team, said the ministry, will work closely with the state government, visit a few districts, take stock of the on-ground situation, and recommend necessary public health interventions to contain the virus. Kerala’s active caseload (1.55 lakh) constitutes 37.1% of the total active cases in t h e c o u n t r y. T h e ave r a g e number of daily new cases had reached a low of 11,000 in the last week of June, but has since been ● More on P4 rising. NATIONWIDE july 28 july 29 Fresh cases 43,654 44,667 Recoveries 41,678 42,107 Deaths 640 549 Statewide july 28 july 29 Fresh cases 22,056 22,064 Recoveries 17,761 16,649 Deaths 131 128 Jab-ometer Take your shot July 28 39,42,457 doses July 29 46,52,914 doses Total doses: 45,55,02,438 16 pages, including 4 pages of THIRUVANANTHAPURAM Express are reserved for students from within the state. The Madras High Court had last week said there will be no admission in medical colleges this year without implementing the AIQ reservation. It had on July 27 last year directed the Un- ion health ministry to set up a committee to workout the quota arithmetic within three months, but the process got stalled, resulting in a rap from the Supreme Court in recent weeks. The new quotas will be applicable from the current academic session. The proposal was approved at a meeting chaired by the prime minister on Monday . AIQ was introduced in 1986 under the direction of the Supreme Court to provide for domicile-free merit-based opportunities to students from any state to aspire to study in a good medical college located in another state. To begin with, there was no quota in AIQ. But in 2007, the Su- preme Court allowed reservation of 15% for SCs and 7.5% for STs, after which OBCs sought a level playing field. When the Central educational institutions (reservation in admission) Act became effective in 2007 providing for uniform 27% reservation to OBCs, it was implemented in all centrally run medical colleges but was not extended to AIQ seats of state medical and dental colleges. The Centre had in 2019 introduced 10% reservation for EWS. Seats in medical and dental colleges were raised over two years ago so that the seat count for other general category students does not go down. Assembly, streets erupt in protest but CM backs under-fire edu min Officials inspect Pegasus office near Tel Aviv S u m i S u k a n ya D u t ta @ New Delhi Following an year-old Madras High Court ruling and pressure from the Supreme Court, the Centre on Thursday announced 27% reservation for OBCs and 10% for the economically weaker section (EWS) of students for undergraduate and postgraduate medicine and dental courses under the All-India Quota (AIQ) scheme. Under the AIQ scheme, 15% UG and 50% PG seats are kept domicile-free in government medical and dental colleges, against which students from other states can be offered admission, while the rest of the seats Decision to benefit 5,550 students The decision would benefit nearly 1,500 OBC students in MBBS and 2,500 OBC students in PG while it will also impact around 550 EWS students in MBBS and around 1,000 EWS students in PG medicine E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ T’Puram PROTEST raged inside and outside the assembly on Thursday seeking the resignation of General Education Minister V Sivankutty, who is set to face prosecution in a criminal case registered under the prevention of damage to public property act. While Opposition UDF sought leave for adjournment to discuss the issue in the assembly feeder , organisations of Congress and BJP staged assembly and secretariat marches seeking Sivankutty’s resignation. On Wednesday, the Supreme Court had ordered that the six accused in the assembly ruckus case of 2015 including Sivankutty and LDF MLA K T Jaleel need to face trial. In line with the decision of CPM leadership, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan defended the Police officers remove a protesting KSU activist outside the assembly on Thursday | Vincent Pulickal minister and ruled out his resignation, prompting the UDF to boycott the assembly Defending . the state government’s plea in the Supreme Court to withdraw prosecution proceedings against the LDF legislators accused in EXPRESS READ PM launches engineering courses in 5 local languages New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday announced that in a first, 14 engineering colleges in India, have started the technical course in five regional languages, which will particularly help the marginalised. GST rate structure rationalisation on govt’s agenda, says CEA New Delhi: Chief Economic Adviser K V Subramanian has said that rationalisation of GST rate structure is on the government’s agenda and it is definitely going to happen. He said a three-rate structure is important. the case, Pinarayi said the court had not held anyone guilty or mentioned anyone’s name in its verdict. The government’s attempt was to protect the privilege of legislators for their actions inside the assembly, he said. Sivankutty didn’t attend the session on Thursday . Citing past incidents of violence in various state legislatures across the country, Pinarayi said the UDF had set a wrong precedent by registering a criminal case against six MLAs when it was in power. The speaker had already taken action against the MLAs by suspending them, he said, adding that withdrawal of cases in similar incidents has happened during the UDF tenure as well. ● More on P4 EDIT | SIVANKUTTY PUZZLE FOR KERALA GOVT AFTER SC SETBACK | P6 E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e Amid mounting international pressure to probe the widespread abuse of the Pegasus spyware, Israeli authorities inspected the offices of NSO Group near Tel Aviv, which owns the military grade cyberwar tool. The inspection happened on Wednesday around the time Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz was in Paris to discuss the matter with his French counterpart, as the latter country’s President Emmanuel Macron’s mobile numbers figured in a leaked database of NSO’s possible surveillance targets. For its part, NSO said defence ministry officials probing the complaints had ‘visited’ and not ‘raided’ its premises. CBI suspects ISI, Pak role in espionage case E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Kochi THE Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probing the conspiracy behind the ISRO espionage case on Thursday informed the Kerala High Court that it suspects that a false case was foisted against eminent scientists of the space research agency at the behest of ISI. The probe agency strongly suspects the involvement of Pakistan in the matter. Appearing for CBI, Additional Solicitor General S V Raju submitted that this is a serious matter involving national security and the Indian space agency’s cryogenic engine technology was derailed with the registration of espionage case against former scientist Nambi Narayanan and others. “This was done at the behest of foreign powers and we suspect that a false case was foisted against two leading scientists of ISRO at the behest of ISI. The agency also strongly believes that Pakistan is involved in the matter,” Raju submitted. “The officers involved in foisting the case have succeeded in derailing the project,” said Raju. ● More on P4 Australia to return 14 stolen artworks to India E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi The National Gallery of Australia (NGA) on Thursday announced its decision to return 14 artworks worth around $3 million from its Asian collection to India, as 13 were sourced from jailed smuggler Subhash Kapoor and one from New York-based art dealer William Wolff. NGA director Nick Mitzevich said that returning the artworks is the right and culturally responsible thing to do. “We are grateful to the Indian government for their support and are pleased we can now return these culturally significant objects,” he said. The handover will take a couple of months. Once done, NGA’s collections will no longer have the Kapoor taint. Indian High Commissioner Manpreet Vohra said NGA’s decision was a gesture of friendship. Some of the artworks that are being returned include bronze and stone sculptures. Judge hit-and-run: HC says attack on judiciary M u ke s h R a n j a n @ Ranchi Taking suo motu co gnizance of a CCTV footage that showed an autorickshaw intentionally running over CCTV footage showing judge Uttam Anand Dhandbad Addi- (inset) being hit by an autorickshaw tional District and Session Judge Uttam Anand, killing him on the spot, the Jharkhand High Court on Thursday called it a direct attack on judiciary . The HC asked state police to probe the incident thoroughly and get to the bottom of the case, while keeping the court updated on the progress. The footage showed the auto hitting the judge, who was on his morning walk, from behind on a deserted road on Wednesday . The shocking incident was also brought to the notice of the Supreme Court on Thursday by SC Bar Association President Vikas Singh, who sought a CBI inquiry . However, the SC did not entertain it saying the Jharkhand HC has already taken up the matter. Police have arrested two persons and the vehicle has also been recovered. During the hearing, the court observed such incidents have never taken place even when Maoist activity was at its peak in the state. It noted the incident is a reflection of the poor law and order situation, which has emboldened criminals to execute such a crime in broad day ligh. P8
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30-07-2021 of The New Indian Express-Thiruvananthapuram