sambalpur l tuesday l august 31, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l city EDITION Tomato prices slump to three-yr seasonal low Steepest fall in Maharashtra, where rate fell 80% to `4/kg, forcing farmers to dump produce on roads amid supply glut Favourable weather added to yield Need more food processing units In 23 of the 31 centres across the country monitored by the government, the average price slump was 50% compared to year-ago Kharif rate. Acting director of National Horticultural Research & Development Foundation P K Gupta said, “Favourable weather helped boost yield, but tendency to grow crops with higher price at the time of sowing added to the situation.” ■ ■ ■ India’s production rose 2.20% to 21 million tonnes in 2020-21 crop year as against 20.55 million tonnes in the year-ago period Gupta said farmers can be cushioned from the impact of falling prices if food processing companies absorb the excess output India, as per industry estimates, consumes 99% tomatoes fresh 1.5L Tonnes of tomatoes are processed annually in India 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 Maha govt bans Dahi Handi, BJP protests Mumbai: The Maharashtra government on Monday banned all kinds of public gatherings, including human pyramids, for the Dahi Handi festival to be observed on Tuesday in view of the rising coronavirus cases in the state. Protesting the move as well as the government’s decision not to open temples till the Covid situation is brought under control, the BJP staged protests at various places in the state on Monday BJP, BJD scuffle at OPGC rail track inauguration Sumit Antil in action during Tokyo Paralympics. He set new world records thrice in his throws. Avani Lekhara (R) set a new paralympic mark during shooting final | PTI/Afp india’s gold reserve Rourkela: Inauguration of the dedicated railway track of Odisha Power General Corporation (OPGC) on Monday saw workers of ruling BJD and opposition BJP enter into a scuffle in presence of senior leaders of both parties in Hemgir block of Sundargarh district. After CM Naveen Patnaik inaugurated the new merry-goround rail system of OPGC through videoconferencing at Manoharpur coal loading platform, Energy Minister Dibya Shankar Mishra, flagged off the first train rake in presence of Sundargarh MP Jual Oram, his Bargarh counterpart Suresh Pujari, Sundargarh MLA Kusum Tete and Talsara MLA Bhawani Shankar Bhoi, all of BJP | P4 Neeraj’s mate, Sumit, sets new world record New Covid variant might evade vaccine defences, says study NEw Delhi: A new variant of SARS-CoV-2 has been detected in South Africa and many other countries globally which could be more transmissible and evade protection provided by vaccines. Scientists from National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) and the KwaZulu-Natal Research Innovation and Sequencing Platform (KRISP) in South Africa said the potential variant of interest, C.1.2, was first detected in the country in May this year | P12 NATIONWIDE Aug 29 Aug 30 Fresh cases 45,083 42,909 Recoveries 35,840 34,763 Deaths 460 380 odisha Aug 29 Aug 30 Fresh cases 849 609 Recoveries Deaths 834 69 843 67 able-bodied men too. He even competed against Neeraj and IT turned out to be a manic co at the Indian Grand Prix 3 Monday for India at the Tokyo in March. Sumit finished sevParalympics. Five medals in- enth then with Chopra shattercluding two gold, as many sil- ing his own national record ver and one bronze in one day with a throw of 88.07m. No is the best by the country The wonder, as soon as the news of . five protagonists had five dif- Sumit’s gold flashed across soferent stories but the two that cial media, Neeraj tweeted definitely hogged the limelight “Khatarnak performance bhai were javelin thrower Sumit, proud of you Sumit Antil and Jhajharia adds (Deadly perfor mshooter Avani Le- to legacy with ance brother Sumit, a silver khara, and both enproud of you).” twined by similar Devendra Jhajharia, “This is my first tales of agony Paralympics and I a two-time —accidents. was a little nervous Paralympic gold When Sumit lost because the competimedallist, won a his leg in a motortors are great. I was silver this time, bike accident in 2015, hoping for a 70m+ while discus his first love, wresthrow, maybe I can thrower Yogesh tling, had to be do 75m. It was not Kathuniya also shelved. He turned my best, I am very finished second. his attention to- Sundar Singh Gurjar happy to break the wards javelin. With also chipped in with world record,” said prosthetics on, SumSumit after the win. a bronze it managed to show “We have a commuglimpses of his prowess and nity of javelin throwers in the on Monday he won gold with a country. Sumit loves competworld record. As fate would ing against Neeraj. They prachave it, he met Tokyo Olym- tise together and they share a pics gold medallist Neeraj Cho- special bond,” Naval Singh, pra three years ago and even Sumit’s coach, told this daily. had a training stint together in “Back in 2018, they even had a 2018. Sumit doesn’t limit him- one-month long training stint self to competing in Para in Finland. They share knowlsporting events. Such is his edge and give suggestions to confidence that he challenges each other,” he added. f i r oz m i r z a @ Chennai Jab-o-meter Take your shot July 29 31,14,696 doses July 30 53,37,042 doses Total doses: 63,99,01,822 Shooting paralysis, depression with sport sport but also found a purpose in life. Close to a decade’s ON that fateful day in 2012, worth of hard work and dediPraveen Lekhara and his fam- cation paid rich dividends on ily were travelling from Monday as Avani became InDholpur, where the former was dia’s first woman gold medalposted as an ADM, to Jaipur. list at the Tokyo Paralympics The car skidded near Agra and when she shot a total of 249.6 flipped two-three times injur- in the 10m Air Rifle Standing ing all the passengers. It in- SH1. By doing so, the 19-yearcluded Praveen, wife Shweta, old shooter also equalled the children Avani and world record. Vinod loses Ar nav and their The father said bronze over cousin. They susthis is just the begincriteria tained injuries but ning. “She will comrecovered in the next pete in three more Indian discus few months. Avani, events and is hopethrower Vinod though, wasn’t so Kumar lost his F52 ful of winning more fortunate. The accimedals.” Avani is set category bronze dent rendered her to compete in mixed medal after being immobile, paralys10m air rifle prone, found ineligible in ing her from the women’s 50m rifle 3 disability waist down. positions and mixed classification “It made her an in- assessment by the 50m rifle prone. trovert. She went competition panel. Given the equipi n t o d e p re s s i o n . He had won bronze ment she has to carThen we suggested ry, she is accompaon Sunday her to pursue sports. nied either by her She tried her hand at archery father or mother for every but balancing turned out to be event. Her mother is with her an issue,” Praveen, who is now in Tokyo. “I feel happy and posted as Revenue Appellate grateful right now. I feel right Authority in Rajasthan’s Sri on top of the world. I dedicate Ganganagar, told this daily . my medal to all Indians. I have The father then took her to a lot of competition days ahead the JDA shooting range in Jag- and more medals to come. I atpura, Jaipur. The decision have three more events and am worked wonders as she not focusing on them,” Avani was only developed interest in the quoted as saying. f i r oz m i r z a @ Chennai NTPC Darlipali plant’s second unit to commence operation from Sept 1 B i j o y P r a d h a n @ Bhubaneswar The National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) will start commercial operation of its second unit of Darlipali Super Thermal Power Station in Sundargarh district from September 1 this year. “The second unit of the power plant with 800 MW capacity that completed its trial operation in July will be synchronised to the power grid soon,” said NTPC Regional Executive Director (eastern region) SK Satya. While Odisha is entitled to receive 50 per cent of the power generated by the Darlipali power project of 1600 MW (2 X 800 MW), the remaining 50 per cent will be sold to Bihar, Jharkhand, Sikkim, and West Bengal. As per the power purchase agreement with the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC), the cost of power from the Darlipali plant will be `2.90 per unit. While the fixed cost of power is set at `1.90 per unit, the variable cost has been determined at `1 per unit. Satya said NTPC has already made an expenditure of over `13,500 crore in the project that is estimated at `13,700 crore. “Some of the works like construction of railway line for transportation of coal and construction of merry go round (MGR) linking to railway sidings at Laikera and Kechobahal stations at Jharsuguda district for coal despatch to the plant is under progress. It is expected that these works will be completed by June 2022,” Satya added. The construction of the railway lines and MGR was delayed due to land acquisition problems. However, the issues were resolved after the Cabinet Committee on Investment (CCI) took up the matter with the State government in January . He said installation of Flue Gas Desulphurisation (FGD) system to curb emissions of suspended particulate matter is under progress and this will be completed by next year. The pit head-based thermal power plant is currently sourcing its requirement of fossil fuel from its Dulanga coal mines at Sundargarh. With a daily requirement of about 25,000 tonne, the Dulanga mine has the capacity to meet 20,000 tonne. The balance requirement will be met from Mahanadi Coalfields Limited. “Once the MGR project is over, NTPC will meet the additional coal requirement from anywhere in the country through railway Satya added. ,” Water for the plant is sourced from the Hirakud reservoir through a pipeline covering a distance of about 30 km from the project site. The first unit of the plant was commissioned in January 2020. Afghan resistance movement and anti-Taliban uprising forces take part in a military training in Panjshir province on Monday | afp IS rocket attack on airport foiled, evac ends today E x p r e ss Ne ws Se r v i c e A day before the evacuation operation in Afghanistan is set to wind up, the US on Monday thwarted five rockets fired at the Kabul airport. While the ISIS reportedly claimed responsibility for the attack, US officials said there were no casualties. US Major General William Hank Taylor said three rockets landed off the airfield with no effect, one was intercepted by an anti-missile system, while the other landed “with no effect to the mission or any danger to our personnel”. Meanwhile, the US drone strike targeting a suspected ISIS-K suicide bomber in Kabul on Sunday killed nine members of a family including six children, the CNN reported quoting locals. The US had specifically warned of a string of attacks targeting the airport where evacuations have entered the final stage. US troops are slated to pull out of Kabul by Tuesday, ending their 20-year stay in Afghanistan. The ongoing evacuation will also come to an end, leaving behind thousands of people frantically trying to get away from the brutal Taliban as far away as possible. However, a joint statement signed by over 90 countries said Afghan nationals who helped the US-led coalition over the past two decades will still be able to travel to a safe destination outside Afghanistan. The statement, signed by the US, Australia, Canada and major European nations, claimed the Taliban have agreed to this arrangement. Notably key players in the region such as Iran, Rus, sia, China, Pakistan and India are not among the signatories according to a list put out by the US Department of State late on Sunday night. P9 Interview ‘Af raises new security questions’ Competitors in action at the Beach Wrestling Nationals in Mamallapuram, a beach resort town, on Monday | sathish babu ‘Not satisfied with two medals’ Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) president, Brij Bhushan Singh, opined that country’s wrestlers can do much more at the international level, in an exclusive interview with this daily | P11 New Delhi: The developments in Afghanistan have raised new security questions, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Monday, adding the Centre is capable of dealing with any situation. Meanwhile, top Taliban leader Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai said the militia wants to have good ties with India P7 Univ deadlines approaching Pradhan urges CM to speed up marksheet issuance for students E x p r e s s Ne w s Se r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar With fast approaching deadlines for admission into post-graduate courses in Central universities and other universities of the country, Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has sought intervention of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for immediate issue of provisional marksheet and pass certificate to students who have appeared in the final semester examination. In a letter to the Chief Minister, Pradhan said that students who have appeared for the final (6th) semester examination through online mode by second week of August, 2021, are unable to apply for admission in universities outside the State. Since the results of the sixth semester are expected to be declared later in the month of September, they may miss admission deadlines of different universities. The Union Minister further highlighted that many students have already missed admission deadlines for Central University of Mizoram and Bharathiar University and are under , severe stress due to fast-approaching deadlines for other institutes such as Mumbai University and Kumaon University “Despite repeated pleas to col. leges and State education authorities, these students have not been provided provisional marksheets,” said Pradhan. His letter stated that the late publication of provisional result/non issuance of marksheet is causing great suffering and jeopardising the career prospects of Odisha students as they are required to submit their final marksheet, or an attested provisional marksheet, for seeking postgraduate admission in various State and Central universities outside Odisha, where the admission procedure has already commenced. Pradhan further said that Odisha students will also be deprived from appearing in any offline university entrance examinations being held outside the State. “Keeping in mind career prospects of final semester undergraduate students in Odisha, I seek your urgent attention in undertaking necessary action for immediate issue of final marksheet, or an attested provisional marksheet to them so that they may be able to pursue postgraduate admissions into various State and Central universities in India,” the Union Education Minister said.
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