sambalpur l friday l january 14, 2022 l `9.00 l PAGES 12 l city EDITION No breakthrough in 14th India-China border talks Stage set for next round of talks The Corps Commander-level meeting was held at the ChushulMoldo border meeting point on the Chinese side on Wednesday Troops to remain in friction points With the dialogue failing to move forward, both sides decided to hold the next round of the commanders’ talks at the earliest possible date. “The two sides agreed to stay in close contact and maintain dialogue via military and diplomatic channels and work out a mutually acceptable resolution of the remaining issues at the earliest,” said a joint statement issued on Thursday ■ ■ Army Chief General M M Naravane had said on Wednesday that India was hopeful of resolving issues related to disengagement at Patrolling Point 15 (Hot Springs) in Ladakh in the latest talks The 13th round of Corps Commander-level talks held on October 10, 2021 had also ended in a stalemate | P7 50,000-60,000 troops each side has deployed along the line of Actual control in ladakh 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 Design Covid strategies that save livelihood: PM Four dead as train derails in bengal E X P RESS NE WS SER V I C E @ Kolkata / New Delhi / Guwahati Suggests local containment, steps that insulate the economy Exp r e s s N e w s S e r v i c e @ New Delhi Advising heightened alert to avoid panic situations, Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his first meeting with chief ministers since the outbreak of the Omicron variant of Covid-19, suggested adopting local containment strategies that have the least impact on livelihood and the economy . He also urged them to be prepared for future variants of the virus as it mutates very fast. “The earlier confusion about Omicron is slowly getting cleared now. The Omicron variant is infecting the general public many times faster than the earlier variants. We have to be alert, be careful, but we also have to take care that there is no panic situation,” Modi said, whose closing remarks were broadcast on social media. Stressing that the Centre and states are dealing with the pandemic for two years now, Modi urged chief ministers to stick the past practices and work collectively “The way the Central . and state governments had adopted a pre-emptive, proactive and collective approach, the same is the mantra of victory this time as well. The more we can limit the corona infection, the less the problem will be,” he said. Underscoring the point that economic activities should not be disrupted, Modi sought to nudge chief ministers to avoid lockdown situations. While Delhi has imposed weekend curfew, other states, too, have announced various restrictions, including night curfew. “While making any strategy , it is very important to keep in mind that there should be minimum damage to the livelihood of the common people. Economic activities and momentum of the economy should be maintained. So, it will be better to focus more on local containment,” he said, while stressing that thrust should be on providing maximum treatment in home isolation. Vaccination, he said, is the only counter to the pandemic, adding the first dose has been administered to about 92% of the adult population. Factoids 2,47,417 13.11% 10.80% New cases in the country as on Thursday morning Health infra expanded Utilising the `23,000 crore package sanctioned by the Centre earlier to revamp health infra, over 800 paediatric units, 1.5 lakh new ICU and HDU beds, more than 5,000 special ambulances and over 950 liquid medical oxygen storage tank capacity have been added across the country so far Odisha is expected to see the peak soon as the new Covid-19 cases breached the 10,000-mark in less than a fortnight of the third wave. The State recorded 10,059 infections in last 24 hours pushing the test positivity rate (TPR) to 12.4 per cent (pc). While 20 districts reported more than 100 cases each, Khurda and Sundargarh led the caseload with 3,188 and 1,348 cases respectively. For the first time in the pandemic, Khurda crossed the 3,000-mark, a majority of the infections coming from the State Capital. The city registered 1,055 new infections with a TPR of around 10 pc | P2 January 12 66,77,685 doses January 13 63,92,572 doses Total doses: 1,55,28,76,434 NATIONWIDE jan 12 jan 13 Fresh cases 1,94,720 2,47,417 Recoveries Deaths 60,405 442 84,825 380 odisha jan 12 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 8,778 949 0 jan 13 10,059 1,447 03 51 ambulances sent to the spot, hospitals in Jalpaiguri receive the injured 12 coaches in all derailed, four of which were badly damaged after falling into a ditch Weekly Positivity Rate Take your shot Odisha reports over 10k cases, peak likely by month-end Rlys announces `5 L compensation Accident happened around 5 pm when the train was running at 40 km per hour Daily positivity rate Jab-o-meter Rescue operation underway after Bikaner Express got derailed on Thursday | PTI Around 1,150 passengers were on the train at the time of the accident Gas cutters used to access, rescue passengers trapped inside the derailed coaches Rlys announces relief of `5 lakh for the victims’ families and `1 lakh for the seriously injured OBC bleeding continues in UP BJP, one more minister quits Nam i ta Ba j pa i @ Lucknow THE saga of defections of disgruntled ministers and MLAs in Uttar Pradesh just ahead of elections, after having enjoyed a full term of five years, continued on Thursday with minister Dharam Singh Saini quitting the Yogi Adityanath government and two MLAs — Mukesh Verma (Shikohabad) and Vinay Shakya (Bidhuna) — resigning from the BJP. While OBC leader Saini cited the BJP-led government’s alleged neglect of the backward class, the two MLAs also gave similar reasons. All three are expected to join the Samajwadi Party. With this, the number of leaders who have left the BJP has risen to 13. According to sources, BJP MLA from Dhaurahara Bala Prasad Awasthi is also planning to quit. AAP’s Punjab CM candiate AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal launched a phone-in service for Punjabis to suggest AAP’s CM candiate, even as he said his choice is Bhagwant Mann Unnao rape victim’s mom in Cong list Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said on Thursday the mother of the Unnao rape victim is among the first list of candidates for UP polls | P8 Notably, most of the deserters had defected to the BJP from the BSP in 2017 just before the polls. Saini won in 2002 and 2007 from Sarsawa in Saharanpur. He was shifted to Nakur in 2012 where he defeated Congress strongman Imran Masood. He won from Nakur again on a BJP ticket in 2017. Odisha Police flip-flop rankles constabulary A r a b i n d a Pa n d a /A s i s h M e h ta @ Cuttack/Bhubaneswar Makar hues A kite-maker gives finishing touches to his products on the eve of Makar Sankranti in Bhubaneswar on Thursday | Biswanath Swain NEW Director General of Police Sunil Bansal may have inherited a constabulary simmering in discontent, thanks to a series of flip-flops by the previous police top administration which decided to repatriate the force’s bottom-ranked personnel – those transferred years ago – back to their parent districts. An about-tur n has not calmed their nerves. An order in August to determine the parent district of constables was followed by another in which all the SPs and DCPs were asked to review the cases and repatriate the constables and havildars back to their parent districts. What followed was huge outcry from the constables. Many went to the court seeking justice. The State Police had to modify its order by placing a 1999 cut-off date in November but with little relief to the constables many of whom were transferred on humanitarian grounds. Another clarification followed on De- cember 30. All this happened when Abhay was at the helm. On August 16 last year, the State Police headquarters issued an order to all SPs and Commissionerate Police to determine the parent cadre of constables. As per Rule 3 of Odisha Police Service (Method of Recruitment and Conditions of Service of Constables) Order 2010, the districts where the constables are initially appointed becomes their parent district where they are entitled to be posted till they remain in the same rank. Same applies to sepoys and constables of armed police. Promotions are permitted in parent cadre only , though in 2013 some constables were allowed change of cadre to districts of their choice. The order stipulated repatriation of all constables before or after 2013 with immediate effect. It also stated that DIGs/IGs and CP have no power to order inter-district transfer or deputation of constables. A second order on the same date said promotions outside parent districts be reCONTINUED ON: P5 verted too. express follow-up Delhi HC stays opaque Chess League tender S h a h i d F a r i d i @ New Delhi The Delhi High Court has stayed the All India Chess Federation’s (AICF) tender to organise the ‘Indian Chess League’, ‘Online Chess League’ and ‘Chess in School’ after a petition was filed charging the federation with refusal to clearly inform bidders about the nature of contract and the scope of work. A two-judge bench, comprising justices Vipin Sanghi and Jasmeet Singh, in its order on Wednesday that was uploaded a day later, said: “The petitioner is aggrieved by the clandestine manner in which the respondent Nos. 1 & 2 have sought to tender the services... (It) was wholly cryptic and no terms and conditions of tender were circulated to the pro- spective and interested bidders.” The order further said “despite the petitioner raising pertinent questions seeking information, there was no response and those queries were not responded to. We are, therefore, inclined to restraint respondent Nos. 1 & 2 from proceeding to either award the contract in relation to the said tender, or carry out any work in respect thereof, if the tender is awarded, till the next date.” The next hearing is February 16. The writ petition by bidder Shivalik Poultries named the AICF as respondent number one, AICF honorary secretary Bharat Singh Chauhan as respondent 2, and the Centre through the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports as the third Continued on P8 respondent. FOUR persons were killed and over two dozens injured after Guwahati-bound Bikaner Express via Patna was on Thursday derailed and four of its coaches rolled into a ditch beside the railway tracks at Maynaguri in West Bengal’s Jalpaiguri district, around 680 km from Kolkata. Sources said the number of casualties and injured might increase as the rescue team was yet to access the ill-fated coaches. Among the injured, condition of 15 was stated to be critical. The Railways has ordered a high-level probe into the accident. According to sources, the train was not at high speed when the accident happened. “After Siliguri, there is speed restriction as the railway tracks pass through elephant corridors in Dooars forest,” said an official. A senior technical officer with the Indian Railways in Delhi said derailment of such grave magnitude generally occurs when tracks are defective or not maintained properly . One of the rescue team members who reached the site after 30 minuets of derailment said the locals had already started the rescue operation. “It was like a thunderbolt. We all fell on each other. There were cries all over,” said Manua Das, who was rescued by locals. Another passenger who escaped unhurt said, “It was as if a major earthquake occurred inside the train.” Bablu Das, a local youth, said he and his friends dragged out many injured from he ill-fated coaches. Express read AstraZeneca says 3rd jab works for Omicron New Delhi: Even as the WHO has said that the existing Covid-19 vaccines may need to be reworked to ensure they are effective against Omicron, AstraZeneca declared that additional analysis from an ongoing trial has showed increased antibody response to Omicron after a third dose of its vaccine. AstraZeneca’s Vaxzevria is available in India under the brand name of Covishield, produced by the Serum Institute of India | P7 ‘Forest cover grew by 537 sq km in Odisha’ Bhubaneswar: Cyclones and ravaging fire notwithstanding, Odisha has managed to increase its forest cover by around 537 square kilometres in the last two years between 2019 and 2021, the third highest among all states in this period. The India State of Forest Report (ISFR) 2021 released by the Forest Survey of India (FSI) said Odisha’s forest cover has increased to 52,155.95 sq km in 2021, from 51,619 sq km in 2019 | P2 World’s 1st baby with bony tail in thoracic region Bhubaneswar: Neurosurgeons at the Institute of Medical Sciences and SUM Hospital, Bhubaneswar, have come across a baby with a rare human tail formed in the upper back region of the body. Claimed to be the first such phenomenon to be reported in the world, the surgeons have successfully operated the infant and removed the abnormal growth | P2
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