S Somanath’s family celebrates his elevation as Isro chief at their residence at Ambalamukku in Thiruvananthapuram | express chennai l thursday l january 13, 2022 l `9.00 l PAGES 22 l 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 ita Ba j pai @ 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 Swa- mi 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 ap- pointed chairman of the state backward commission. A sitting MLA from Madhuban in Mau district of eastern UP, Chauhan is a prominent leader from the Most Backward Classes (MBC). In his resigna- 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 Modi inaugurates 11 new TN med colleges Stalin urges PM to provide TN exemption from NEET Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurates 11 new medical colleges in Tamil Nadu via videoconference from New Delhi while Chief Minister MK Stalin and others participated from Chennai on Wednesday E x p r ess N ews S e r v i c e @ Chennai Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated 11 new medical colleges and a new campus of the Central Institute of Classical Tamil in Tamil Nadu through videoconferencing from New Delhi on Wednesday . Participating in their first government event together since his government came to power last May, Chief Minister MK Stalin made use of the opportunity to urge the PM to exempt the State from the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET). Stalin, who joined the event from the Secretariat in Chennai along with Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya, said the State’s medical admissions policies had played a key role in developing the health infrastructure in TN. To protect this, State has been continuously demanding an exemption from NEET, he said. “I appeal to the Union Government to consider our request favourably the CM said. ,” Job scam: SC grants 4-week bail to Bhalaji E x p r ess N ews S e r v i c e @ New Delhi In a relief to former AIADMK minister KT Rajenthra Bhalaji, accused of involvement in a government job scam, the Supreme Court on Wednesday granted bail for four weeks. The court ordered Bhalaji to surrender his passport to the magistrate concerned and raised questions about the manner of his arrest. A bench, headed by Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, said the orders were being passed after a suo motu case regarding decongestion of prisons due to Covid-19. “For now, we will grant bail to the petitioner for four weeks subject to the condition the petitioner shouldn’t leave the jurisdiction of the police station where the crime was registered. He has to participate and cooperate with investigating agencies,” the court said. The bench, fixed the next hearing after three weeks, also asked the State to file a detailed counter on the issues raised by the petitioner. P9 Earlier, Stalin presented a memorandum to Mandaviya, stressing the State’s rights in admissions to UG and PG medical courses apart from seeking additional funds to establish new hospitals across the State. Stalin also thanked the PM for sanctioning the 11 new medical colleges and sought the Centre’s continued support for the health sector. He also asked the Centre to extend its help to set up medical colleges in the newly-formed districts. The Prime Minister inaugurated new medical colleges at Ariyalur, Dindigul, Kallakurichi, Krishnagiri, Namakkal, Tiruvallur, Ramanathapuram, Virudhunagar, The Nilgiris, Tiruppur, and Nagapattinam. The colleges, which offer 1,450 seats, will begin MBBS admissions from this year. “Over `3,000 crore would be provided to TN in the next five years. This will help to set up Urban Health labs and Critical Care Blocks. The benefits of this for Tamil Nadu will be immense,” Modi said. P4 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 with their reservation rights. While Chauhan had yet to re- TN to get `3K crore Over `3,000 crore would be provided to Tamil Nadu in the next five years which will help in setting up Urban Health labs and Critical Care Blocks across the State, said PM Narendra Modi Spread over 16.5 acres CICT’s new campus at Perumbakkam, is spread over 16.5 acres. The institute will promote research on the classical phase of the Tamil language Policy tweak lets mild cases leave in 7 days E x p r ess N ews 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 tamil nadu jan 11 jan 12 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 15,379 3,043 20 17,934 4,039 19 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 veal 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 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 Loniya-Rajput 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 commu- nity 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 backward classes. P12 Retail inflation at six-month high World Bank projections E x p r ess N ews 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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