S Somanath’s family celebrates his elevation as Isro chief at their residence at Ambalamukku in Thiruvananthapuram | EXPRESS HYDERABAD THURSDAY JANUARY 13, 2022 `9.00 PAGES 16 LATE CITY EDITION EMINENT ROCKET SCIENTIST SOMANATH IS NEW ISRO CHIEF Dr S Somanath, who is at present director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, will take over from incumbent K Sivan on Friday COMBINED TENURE OF THREE YEARS PLAYED KEY ROLE IN CHANDRAYAAN-2 Somanath’s appointment as Space Secretary and Space Commission chairman is for a combined tenure of three years including extension. The post of ISRO chairman, Space Secretary and Space Commission chief is usually held by one person. Somanath did his B Tech in Mech Engg from TKM engg college Kollam and masters in aerospace engg from IISc Bangalore ■ ■ Among his achievements are the successful flight of an electric propulsion system in GSAT-9 and the development and qualification of CE20 cryogenic engine and the C25 stage Somanath was also instrumental in developing the GSLV Mk-III rocket, which was chosen to fly the Chandrayaan-2 mission 10th SOMANATH WILL BE THE 10TH CHAIRMAN OF THE PREMIER SPACE ORGANISATION CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA ■ BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOGGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR ■ KALABURAGI In season of Aaya Rams and Gaya Rams, another UP minister resigns N A M I TA B A J PA I @ Lucknow IN what is being seen as a realignment of political forces in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh, a second BJP minister quit the Yogi government in as many days, while the party poached a couple of lawmakers from the Congress and the Samajwadi Party as also a former MLA from Akhilesh Yadav’s party . A day after UP minister Swami Prasad Maurya created a flutter by putting in his papers, his colleague Dara Singh Chauhan followed suit on Wednesday Speculation about his . exit had started doing the rounds after Maurya left on Tuesday Both are . serial party-hoppers. Chauhan was holding the environment and forest portfolio in the Yogi cabinet. He had last defected from the BSP to the BJP in 2015 and was soon appointed chairman of the state backward commission. A sitting MLA from Madhuban in These (anti-farmer) policies coupled with threat of proposed reforms in the agriculture, fixing of meters for electricity distribution are causing a great deal of anxiety among the hard-working farmers of our country –K Chandrasekhar Rao, Telangana Chief Minister Missive to Modi: KCR blasts Centre for hike in fertiliser, fuel prices TRS supremo blames Centre’s skewed agriculture policy for steep rise in the cost of cultivation E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E @ Hyderabad HARDENING his stand further against the BJP, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao on Wednesday dashed off a hard-hitting letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, accusing the Centre of trying to corporatise agriculture and glossing over his promise to double farmers’ income by 2022. The Chief Minister blamed the skewed agriculture policy of the Centre for the steep rise in the cost of production with no government intervention in sight to provide any relief to farmers. Earlier in the day, the Chief Minister called upon the people to confront the BJP leaders whenever they spot them and demand answers as to why the saffron party was toeing an anti-farmer line. “Certain matters in the purview of the Union government are adversely affecting the interests of the farming community in the country and my State,” Rao said in his letter. “By raising the fertiliser prices, increasing fuel prices and faulty fixation of MSP prices, the Central government is not only contributing to increase in the cost of cultivation but also defaulting on the promise of doubling farmers’ income. These policies, coupled with threat of proposed reforms in agriculture, fixing of meters for electricity distribution are causing a great deal of anxiety among the hard-working farmers of our country Rao ,” said. In February 2016, the Centre had announced that it would double the farmers income in six years. Despite passage of over five years, no specific or structured prog ramme had been initiated in this direction, he pointed out. “Contrary to your promise of doubling farmers income, to the dismay of one and all, input costs have doubled in the last five years and the income of f ar ming community declined, causing distress to farmCONTINUED ON P4 ers,” he said. Mau district of eastern UP Chauhan , is a prominent leader from the Most Backward Classes (MBC). In his resi g n a t i o n l a t t e r t o G ove r n o r Anandiben Patel, Chauhan accused the BJP government of ignoring Dalits and backwards and tampering SERIAL PARTY-HOPPER DOES IT AGAIN Dara Singh Chauhan represented the BSP in Rajya Sabha in 1996; SP in RS from 2000-2006; BSP again in Lok Sabha from 2009-2014; lost 2014 LS polls on BSP ticket before defecting to the BJP a year later Policy tweak lets mild cases leave in 7 days E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi THE Centre on Wednesday revised its hospital discharge policy for Covid-19 patients, categorising them as mild, moderate and severe, adding mild cases can be discharged seven days after testing positive without a repeat test. However, mild patients must be without fever for three consecutive days before discharge, the advisory stated. As for moderate cases, if there is resolution of symptoms and patients maintain oxygen saturation greater than 93% for three successive days without oxygen support, they can be discharged. ICMR director general Balram Bhargava said there was no need to test mild patients before home isolation as there is enough evidence to suggest that people do not spread infection after five days of infection, if they do not have symptoms. “Since RT-PCR tests are very sensitive—they continue to detect even dead viruses raising false alarms that a person is positive but that is not the case,” he said. The advisory comes as India added 1,94,720 new infections to its tally of Covid-19 cases. NATIONWIDE JAN 11 JAN 12 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 1,68,063 1,94,720 69,959 60,405 277 442 TELANGANA JAN 11 JAN 12 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 1,920 2,319 417 417 2 2 JAB-O-METER TAKE YOUR SHOT January 11 76,68,282 doses January 12 66,77,685 doses TOTAL DOSES 1,54,50,27,669 Thieves target empty Dignity houses S BAC H A N J E E T S I N G H @ Hyderabad THERE is no protection to one of the biggest and prestigious 2BHK Dignity Housing project in Asia at Kollur, Ramchandrapuram on the city’s outskirts as well as two other 2BHK sites at Hafeezpet and Dundigal. Though these projects have been completed, they have not been allotted to the beneficiaries yet. In the absence of security at these places, miscreants have stolen electrical wiring and copper coils from transformers, sanitary and hardware material like steel taps, windows, door frames and other electrical appliances worth lakhs of rupees. Taking a serious view of the situation, the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) has decided to write to the State government to provide round-the-clock security at these places. Confirming the theft of items, the GHMC officials said that they were assessing the value of material t hat has been taken away from these CONTINUED ON P3 sites. GREAT SANKRANTI RUSH BEGINS S U N N Y BA S K I @ Hyderabad ALL the roads heading to Vijayawada, Warangal, Kurnool and other parts of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh are packed with lakhs of people travelling to their natives places for Sankranti festivities. Whether it is rail, air, bus or private vehicles, the people are moving out of Hyderabad to their hometowns in whichever mode of transportation is available and affordable. Despite the prevalence of Omicron, there is no fear among the people as they are in a hurry to reach their homes. At Pantangi Toll Plaza in Nalgonda district, the vehicles bound for Vijaywada and destinations beyond, have been moving very slowly The situa. tion is better compared to previous years after the advent of FASTags. Traffic snarls all around, seats in spl services sold out, pvt operators fleecing commuters A long queue of vehicles at Pantangi Toll Plaza On an average, 50,000 vehicles are crossing the toll plaza per day in this festive season. To clear the festive rush, the South Central Railway (SCR) is operating over 100 special trains from Secunderabad to Narsapur, Visakhapatnam, Kakinada, Machilipatnam, Tirupati, Anakapalle, Vijayawada and other parts of Andhra Pradesh. with their reservation rights. While Chauhan had yet to reveal his destination, Akhilesh tweeted his photograph with Chauhan, welcoming him to the SP fold and calling him an apostle of social justice. For his part, Deputy Chief Minister However, tickets in sleeper and AC classes in regular trains like Hyderabad-Vizag Godavari Express, Lingampally-Kakinada Goutami Express, Secunderabad-Gudur Simhapuri Express and Secunderabad-Tirupati Padmavathi Express have been sold out long ago and a large number of passengers are on CONTINUED ON P2 the waiting list. Keshav Prasad Maurya urged both Maurya and Chauhan to reconsider their decisions. “If any family member strays, it is very sad. I can only appeal... please don’t get on a sinking ship. Big brother Dara Singhji, please reconsider,” Maurya tweeted. Chauhan hails from the LoniyaRajput community a sub-caste of the , MBCs that constitutes 3% of UP’s population. They have clout in eastern UP. His joining the SP would strengthen Akhilesh’s efforts to bring non-OBCs on board to project his party as a rainbow of all castes. The Loniya-Rajput community is mainly concentrated in and around east UP districts of Ghazipur, Mau, Azamgarh, Gorakhpur, Varanasi and Pratapgarh. As for the BJP’s acquisitions of the day sitting MLAs Naresh , Saini (Congress) and Hari Om Yadav (SP), and former SP MLA Dharampal Singh joined the party on Wednesday . Both Saini and Yadav represent backP8 ward classes. Retail inflation at six-month high World Bank projections E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E World Bank has retained India’s GDP growth forecast for the current fiscal at 8.3% as the recovery is yet to become broad-based. It also upgraded its growth forecast for FY23 and FY24 to 8.7% and 6.8%, respectively, citing improved investment outlook DEALING a twin blow to expectations of a healthier economy in the post-Covid era, latest data showed retail inflation is shooting up while industrial activity is losing steam. According to figures released by the National Statistical Office on Wednesday retail , inflation flared up again in December 2021 to 5.6%, on higher food, clothing and footwear prices. This is the highest monthly retail inflation recorded in the past six months and is within kissing distance from the Reserve Bank of India’s upper limit of 6%. According to analysts, low base effect could have led to @ New Delhi food and beverages prices rising 4.5% in December compared with 2.6% in November. However, economists welcome the softening of fuel, oil and fat prices. They also see broadbased moderation in food prices in January 2022. “The overall falling sequential momentum on food prices is expected to continue in January but the sticky core inflation and adverse base effect poses risk of the next reading being higher than 6%,” said Upasna Bhardwaj, economist, Kotak Mahindra Bank. Meanwhile, the Index of Industrial Production (IIP), which measures the industrial activities in the economy grew , the slowest in nine months. The IIP recorded an increase of 1.4% in November, down from 3.2% growth in October. Both mining and manufacturing growth in November showed a tepid growth of 5.0% and 0.9%, respectively (11.3% and 2% in October). Electricity grew 2.1% in November. “It is very clear that the GDP growth took a serious hit in OctoberNovember 2021 and thus, the third quarter of the financial year. I am confident that the consensus of 6.3% y-o-y growth forecast will be revised down and 5-5.5% looks more likely,” said Nikhil Gupta, chief economist at Motilal Oswal Financial Services.
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