TIRUCHY WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 08, 2021 `7.00 PAGES 12 LATE CITY EDITION DESPITE SC ORDER, ARMY SAYS 28 WOMEN OFFICERS ‘UNFIT’ A total of 28 women officers have been declared unﬁt to serve in the Army, with 11 of them set to leave the forces soon SEVEN OFFICERS MOVE SUPREME COURT Out of the 28 who were found unfit, seven officers have knocked the doors of the apex court terming the Army order discriminatory. One officer told this paper that the Army is not accepting the same criteria based on which they were given extensions twice earlier. The Supreme Court had given the ruling to grant permanent commission (PC) to women officers in Feb 2020 ■ 20 yrs SO FAR, 424 WOMEN GRANTED P.C. ■ Following the SC order, a special board was set up to identify women officers to be given permanent commission As many as 615 women officers were considered, of which 424 were granted PC. The results of 77 have been withheld and 28 have been declared unfit to continue MOST OF THE WOMEN OFFICERS HAVE OVER TWO DECADES OF SERVICE 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 Farmers begin indefinite dharna Mullah Hassan to head Taliban’s interim govt, Baradar deputy PM Talks with Karnal administration fails; action sought against brutal caning on August 28 H A R P R E E T B A J W A @ Chandigarh EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE Mullah Hasan Akhund Interim PM Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar Deputy PM Sirajuddin Haqqani Acting Interior minister India won’t recognise govt soon India is unlikely to recognise the Taliban government but will remain enganged with it. “It is very unlikely that we will have diplomatic relations with them,” sources said, adding Delhi will not have any physical presence in Afghanistan. In terms of peopleto-people contact, sources said, India will continue to receive Afghan citizens | P7 TWENTY-three days after taking control of Kabul and promising a broad-based, inclusive and internationally acceptable government, the Taliban on Tuesday announced an interim regime comprising their own leaders. The new Afghan government will be led by Mullah Hassan Akhund, an associate of the movement’s late founder Mullah Omar, as prime minister. There will be two deputy prime ministers – the outfit’s political head Mullah Abul Ghani Baradar and Abdul Salam Hanafi, a member of the Islamist group’s political office in Doha, Qatar. Sirajuddin Haqqani of the dreaded Haqqani network will be the interior minister, while Mullah Mohammad Yaqoob (son of Mullah Omar), will be defence minister. Hailing from Kandahar, Akhund served as governor of the province during the outfit’s first reign in the 1990s. Baradar was the leader of the Taliban delegation in the Qatar peace talks. Haqqani, a US-designated terrorist, has a $10 million bounty on his head. While there was no mention of what role Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada, the Taliban supreme leader, will play in the government, AFP reported quoting the secretive leader as saying in a statement that the new government will uphold the sharia law. The announcement of the new government, which doesn’t have a single woman member, came on a day when the capital city witnessed huge protests by women denouncing Pakistan’s airstrikes in Panjshir province. Chanting ‘death to Pakistan’ and ‘Freedom’, the protesters gathered at the gate of the Pakistani embassy in Kabul and asked its staff to leave Afghanistan, local media reported. Taliban gunmen broke up the protests by repeatedly firing into the air and threatening the protesters. They also detained several journalists covering the protests and allegedly thrashed some of them with rifle butts. When questioned about the handling of the protests at a press conference to announce the new government, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said illegal demonstrations would P9 not be allowed. Farmers participating in a protest at Haryana’s Karnal on Tuesday before beginning their indefinite dharna | SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT RSS outfit’s turn to hit the streets to support kisans EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi STRIKING a chord with the agitating farmers, the kisan wing of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh will hold a nationwide protest on Wednesday demanding a law guaranteeing procurement of foodgrains at remunerative prices after realistic assessment of variables like input cost and inflation. Unlike the Samyukta Kisan Morcha, which has been pushing for total repeal of three controversial farm sector reform laws, the Bharatiya Kisan Sangh (BKS) wants the laws amended to accommodate its concerns. BKS general secre- tary Badrinath Choudhary demanded that the government come out with a law on guaranteed purchase of foodgrains at remunerative prices across the country He also sought a mech. anism where traders can be registered and on-the-spot payment made to farmers. “The prevailing situation wherein procurement of foodgrains takes place largely in Punjab and Haryana, must change. Farmers across the country should be able to sell their produce at fixed prices with facility for immediate payments,” added Choudhury . The BKS said any purchase below the fixed price for grains should be declared a crime. No photos of netas on school textbooks, bags: Madras HC EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Chennai Inside the courtroom THE Madras High Court on Tuesday said public funds cannot be misused to print photographs for the personal interests of any politician, especially on text books, bags, and other educational materials. The State government should ensure that such practice is not continued in the future, the court said. The first bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice PD Audikesavalu made the observation on a PIL moved by one Oveyam Ranjan. The petitioner sought a direction to the State government to utilise the unused stock of text books and other stationery materials such as crayons, colour pencils, and Photographs of the Chief Minister may be carried, but that should be restricted to advertisements in newspapers or some hoardings, the bench said while disposing of the plea school bags, which carried the photos of former chief ministers of the State. “Thankfully, it is submitted by the Advocate General that a statement was recently made on the floor of the Assembly that the present dispensation will ensure that school bags, text books, and stationery bearing the photographs or other signs of previous chief ministers will continue to be used till exhausted, so as to not waste money already spent,” the court said. It is also submitted on behalf of the State that the Chief Minister does not desire his photographs to be published in such material in the future, the court added. Accordingly no further order , needs to be made, except directing the State government that extreme care and caution should be taken to ensure that public funds are not expended for publicity purposes of political leaders, including in hoardings and other material, the court added. “However, photographs of the Chief Minister may be carried, but should be restricted to advertisements in newspapers or a few hoardings, and certainly not on text books or exercise books or any educational material at all,” the bench said while disposing of the plea. FEAR OF VIOLENCE Earlier in the day, the Karnal district administration and police issued a statement citing intelligence reports to claim that some anti-social elements had reached the city armed with lathis and iron rods etc. “It does not show good intention. All such elements with be strictly dealt with in accordance with law,” the statement read INTERNET DOWN Haryana has suspended mobile internet services in Karnal, Kurukshetra, Kaithal, Jind and Panipat districts. Also, 40 companies of security forces, including 10 of CAPF, have been deployed. Prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the CrPC has been imposed CAIRN READY TO ACCEPT REFUND, WITHDRAW CASE EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Chennai JAB-O-METER TAKE YOUR SHOT September 6 1,10,40,809 doses September 7 67,43,698 doses TOTAL DOSES: 70,63,55,796 NATIONWIDE SEP 06 SEP 07 Fresh cases 38,948 31,222 Recoveries Deaths 43,903 42,942 219 290 TAMIL NADU SEP 06 SEP 07 Fresh cases 1,556 1,544 Recoveries Deaths 1,564 18 1,576 19 UK-based Cairn Energy Plc will drop litigations to seize Indian government properties abroad, including diplomatic apartments in Paris and Air India airplanes in the US, after getting $1 billion refund of retrospective tax collected by the Centre, Cairn CEO Simon Thomson said. The government had last month enacted a new legislation to reverse the controversial retrospective tax law of 2012, which had led to tax claims worth over `1.1 lakh crore against multinational companies such as Cairn Energy Plc, Vodafone Plc, pharma major Sanofi, and alcohol sector fir m SABMiller. The government had already secured around `8,100 crore from such companies When the medical care you need finds you at home SIXTY-year-old Jothi was diagnosed with colon cancer four years ago. Since then, she’s had to travel nearly 30 km every month — from Thirukovil Pathu village in Tiruvallur district to the Government Royapettah Hospital in Chennai — for her medicines. But thanks to the Makkalai Thedi Maruthuvam scheme, she now gets the medicines at her doorstep. “It was tough to get to the hospital, and I always had to go with my husband. We took the train and buses from our village,” explains Jothi, who uses a colostomy bag, a plastic bag that collects stool through an opening in the stomach. Under the Makkalai Thedi Maruthuvam scheme, Jothi not only gets palliative care and drugs at home, but even colostomy bags, says S Parkavi, a staff nurse at the Poonamallee health unit in Tiruvallur district. Members of the medical team implementing the scheme say they are happy to deliver healthcare services at the doorsteps of people who can’t afford to travel to hospitals frequently, and might miss physiotherapy and palliative care sessions, and some even medicines. “I felt glad when an elderly woman who couldn’t walk thanked me profusely after I helped her stand during a physiotherapy session. She wasn’t getting the medical care she SOON TO COVER ENTIRE STATE The scheme was launched by Chief Minister MK Stalin on August 5 in Krishnagiri, Madurai, Coimbatore, Salem, Thanjavur, Tiruchy, Tirunelveli and Chennai districts, and will cover the entire State by end of 2021 through a variety of routes. Of this, `7,783 crore (of $1.06 billion) was collected from Cairn alone. From this refund, Cairn plans to return up to $700 million to shareholders — $500 million through a special dividend and a share buyback programme worth $200 million. “The remainder of the proceeds would be allocated to further expansion of the low cost, sustainable production base,” it said. Cairn also plans to enter into statutory undertakings with the GoI related to the new legislation. While it admitted that the final form of these statutory undertakings has yet to be published by the GoI, it went on to note that it anticipates that the principal condition prescribed will be the withdrawal of Cairn’s rights under the international arbitration award. EXPRESS READ KNOCK KNOCK, HELP’S HERE S I N D U J A J A N E @ Chennai charge the agitators on August 28.” THOUSANDS of farmers on Their demands included a Tuesday laid an indefinite compensation package of `25 seige around the mini secre- lakh to the family of Sushil Katariat in Haryana’s Karnal city jal, a farmer who succumbed to demanding immediate action his injuries allegedly after the against officials involved in a police baton charge, and a govbrutal lathicharge on agitating ernment job for his son. As for farmers on August 28. Three the other farmers injured in rounds of talks earlier in the the caning, they demanded a day with the district adminis- compensation of `2 lakh each. tration failed to resolve the Earlier in the day, a 11-memmatter, after which farmers ber delegation of farmers held marched 5 km to reach the talks with Deputy Commismini secretariat, crossing six sioner Nishant Kumar Yadav, police bar ricades in the Inspector General of Police, process. Karnal range, Mamta Challenge Attempts to disSingh, Superintendfor Khattar perse them at the last ent of Police of Karbarricade using water The focus is now nal Ganga Ram Punia cannons failed. Till on Chief Minister and other officials for then they were alabout two hours. The Manohar Lal lowed to proceed un- Khattar, as Karnal talks remained inconhindered. When the clusive as the farmers is his Assembly march began, senior refused to budge from constituency. leaders of the Samy- “The Khattar govt their demands. ukt Kisan Morcha, inSenior farmer leadshould agree to cluding Rakesh er Balbir Singh Raour demands or Tikait, Balbir Singh else arrest us. We jewal said during the Rajewal, Darshan Pal, talks Nishant Kumar are ready to fill Yogendra Yadav and Yadav had sought to Haryana jails,” Gurnam Singh Chabuy time — as much Tikait tweeted duni, were briefly deas a month — to probe tained by the police if former SDM Ayush but let off within minutes. Sinha’s objectionable words acIndicating the farmers were tually led to the police lathichprepared for the long haul, arge. Harinder Singh Lakhowtents and kitchens quickly al, general secretary of BKU sprung up at the dharna spot (Lakowal), said they were alAnnouncing the indefinite ways ready for further talks. dharna, Tikait said, “We will Addressing a mahapanchaystay put till our demands are at at the new grain market, Yomet. We want action against gendra Yadav said, “We have IAS officer Ayush Sinha, the come to ask the government then Karnal sub-divisional which law under the Constitumagistrate (SDM), whose tion gives an IAS officer perviral video showed him direct- mission to give orders to break ing the police to brutally lathi- the heads of farmers.’’ needed as her only daughter had to focus on running the household,” recounts R Poornima, a physiotherapist in the Poonamallee health unit district. Parkavi points out that the door-to-door screening for noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in villages revealed that many people weren’t getting basic healthcare services. “Many of them were elderly people from poor families whose relatives couldn’t take care of them as they had to go to work.” CONTINUED ON: P5 TN announces DA hike for 16 lakh govt staff Chennai: Chief Minister MK Stalin has announced a slew of welfare measures, including early hike in Dearness Allowance (DA) for over 16 lakh government employees, teachers, and pensioners, from January 1, 2022, on Tuesday | P4 EXPRESS IMPACT Illegal sand mining: PWD to submit report soon EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Chennai ACTING on a report that appeared in these columns on Tuesday, on the illegal sand mining that is being done at the Cooum River mouth in Chennai, PWD officials in charge have been asked to submit a response on the issue. “Our officials have already visited the spot, and based on the report, we will discuss the next course of action,” an official told TNIE. Meanwhile, Sandeep Saxena, Additional Chief Secretary to the State Government, Public Works Department, remained unavailable for a comment. TNIE had reported on the theft of sea sand from the Cooum River mouth near Napier Bridge by tipper lorries with fake registration numbers. While local sources said the illegal operations have been going on for a year, no action had been initiated by the PWD and the police. Apart from a loss to the exchequer, the sea sand, if used for construction, will result in poor quality buildings and put the life of occupants at risk, builders had opined. 25% MORE SEATS IN GOVT ARTS AND SCIENCE COLLEGES Owing to a significant rise in demand for government colleges, Tamil Nadu has increased the number of seats in arts and science colleges by 25 per cent
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