BHUBANESWAR l tuesday l january 18, 2022 l `9.00 l PAGES 12 l late city EDITION Deadline for feedback on GM food norms extended People can now submit feedback on the draft regulations till Feb 5, the FSSAI said on Monday. Original deadline was Jan 15 DECISION AFTER pressure from rss outfit Blanket nod for use as ingredient? The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI)’s decision to push the last date comes in the wake of protests from anti-GM groups, activists, farmers and NGOs. Last week, the RSS-affiliated Swadeshi Jagran Manch (SJM), too, put its weight behind the anti-GM campaign shooting off a letter to the FSSAI asking it to withdraw its “irresponsible” proposals ■ ■ SJM co-convenor Ashwani Mahajan also launched an online campaign highlighting GM food’s impact on health and nature According to the draft norms, once the FSSAI grants approval, no other clearance is required for GM food to be used as an ingredient in any product, except infant food | P9 Nov 15, 2021 When the fssai released the draft guidelines on gm food 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 Drone strike kills 2 Indians in UAE Trouble to escalate after first attack by Houthi rebels, as Gulf nation says it has a right to respond E x p r ess Ne w s S e r v i c e @ New Delhi ‘mother’ to the destitute, Shanti Devi no more Eminent social worker and Gandhian Shanti Devi passed away at her Seva Samaj Ashram in Gunupur at Rayagada district late on Sunday night. She was 88 | P2 IT’s called the safest country in the Gulf region. Yet, three people, including two Indians, were killed in a drone attack near the Abu Dhabi airport on Monday The ter. ror message was clear — don’t think the UAE is a safe place to live and work any longer. Yemen-based Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for the attack. Tension in the region is set to rise as the UAE has vowed to retaliate. “This terrorist attack by the Houthi militia on areas and civilian facilities on Emirati soil... will not go unpunished,” UAE foreign ministry said. A Pakistani national also died in the explosion. All the three deceased were employees of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc). Six others were hurt in the attack but are out of danger. Test positivity rate jumps to 15 per cent in Odisha E x p r ess Ne w s S e r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar DESPITE a marginal drop in Covid infection count during the last 24 hours mainly due to low testing, Odisha’s daily test positivity rate (TPR) touched 15 per cent (pc) on Monday . The State reported 10,489 new Covid cases, 688 less than the previous day pushing the overall , infection count to 11,44,401. Three Covid deaths were also reported from Bhubaneswar and Angul in this period taking Covid toll to 8,484. The daily TPR of the State, however, jumped to 15 pc from 14.5 pc on Sunday. This despite around 7,000 less samples tested against the previous day’s 77,120. Hotspot Khurda reported the highest 2,934 cases followed by 1,447 in Sundargarh, 786 in Cuttack and 433 in Balasore in the last 24 hours. Director of Public Health Dr Niranjan Mishra said the State now has 75,797 active cases, including 24,764 in Khurda, one of the five districts in red zone. Sundargarh, Sambalpur, Cuttack and Balasore are the other four districts that are in this zone for having over 2,500 active cases. Dr Mishra, however, said that despite such a high load of active cases, the growth rate and doubling time of Covid-19 cases have slowed down in the State since the last five days and hospitalisation has also remained considerably low. “Out of 75,000 plus active cases, only around 1,200 patients are in hospitals which shows that the situation in the State is under control,” he said. The Public Health Director, however, said it would not be appropriate to come to a conclusion on the trend of the infection spread in a s h o r t s p a n o f t i m e. CONTINUED ON: P5 Iran-backed rebels Yemen’s Houthi rebels have claimed responsibility for the attack in UAE. The Houthis, backed by Iran, have in the past launched several cross-border missile and drone attacks on Saudi Arabia but this is the first time they are claiming an attack deep inside Emirates. Monday’s attack is reportedly a retaliation against the Saudi-led coalition’s offensive against the Houthis. The identity of those killed could not be immediately known and the authorities were working on it, India’s Ambassador to the UAE Sunjay Sudhir told this newspaper on phone. He also sought to downplay concerns saying that the UAE, which is home to around 35 lakh Indians, is a safe place. According to reports, boobytrapped drones hit Adnoc’s storage facility at Mussafah industrial area near the airport, triggering multiple explosions. Three petroleum tankers exploded in the fire. The industrial area is just 22 km from the city centre and has an oil pipeline network including 36 storage tanks, from which heavy vehicles transport fuel across the country . The UAE is a key member of the Saudi-led coalition that has waged war against the Houthis since 2015. The Houthis had recently threatened to launch strikes against the UAE after losing the energy-rich Shabwa province to the coalition. The province is a strategic asset as it has significant oil and gas fields as well as two ports for exporting energy . It’s not just the Houthis who were targeting the UAE. The Emirate was facing threats from Shia militias in Iraq as well, suggesting that Monday’s attack could have been well orchestrated. Saudi-led coalition had issued a statement that they had destroyed three drones in southern Saudi Arabia. However, it provided no evidence to substantiate the claims. It has been targeted by Yemen through drones and missiles. Third Covid-19 wave ebbing in Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata? S u m i S u k a n ya D u t ta @ New Delhi Though the ongoing third wave of Covid-19 continues to be building in the country the , curve in a few big cities may have started to bend. An analysis of daily Covid cases and deaths in Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata shows that the wave may have already peaked there. Mumbai logged 7,895 new cases on Sunday; its figures have been declining since January 7 when the city had a whopping 20,971 fresh cases. The earlier one-day high for Mumbai was 11,163 cases, registered on April 4 last year during the second wave of the pandemic. In Delhi, where the daily Covid cases had crossed 30,000 on two days late last week, less than 28,000 were recorded on Sunday Though the number . of tests, too, dropped a tad in the city the good news is the , fall in the test positivity rate (TPR) — under 28% now after crossing 30% earlier. Kolkata, which had shown an explosive TPR of over 70% for several days, is also reporting a marginal decline. Also, the daily case count in the city is now under 6,000 as against 10,000-plus earlier. A senior member of the national Covid-19 task force told this newspaper that the government is watching these numbers closely, adding the wave appears to be ebbing. “However, we will need to see the trend for about 10 days before reaching a conclusion,” he said. Health economist Rijo M John pointed out that at the national level, too, the most comforting factor is the low level of hospitalisation. National growth rate of active cases dipping? “The national growth of active cases has been declining for the past couple of days. Testing may have declined a bit. But the TPR has not really gone up much despite a change in strategy towards more targeted testing,” pointed out health economist Rijo M John. NATIONWIDE jan 16 jan 17 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 2,71,202 2,58,089 1,38,331 1,51,740 314 385 odisha jan 16 jan 17 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 11,177 10,489 4,452 5,965 03 03 Jab-o-meter Take your shot January 16 39,46,348 doses January 17 68,95,050 doses Total doses 1,57,91,63,478 express read Punjab poll postponed to February 20 New Delhi: The poll panel on Monday said Punjab election will be held on February 20 instead of February 14 in view of Guru Ravidas Jayanti. Various parties including the Congress and BJP had urged the EC to postpone the voting as thousands of Guru Ravidas followers travel from Punjab to Varanasi to celebrate his birth anniversary | P8 Auto dealers seek GST cut on two-wheelers New Delhi: Amidst falling sales, automobile dealers’ body FADA has urged the Central government to reduce GST rates on two-wheelers from 28% to 18% in the coming budget to generate demand in the segment. FADA said that two-wheelers are not a luxury item and hence GST rates need to come down | P10 Over 8K candidates file nominations Bhubaneswar: Even as political parties grappled with the task of candidate selection for the panchayat election, thousands of nominees filed their papers on the first day. As many as 8,772 candidates filed their nomination papers. According to the State Election Commission, 1,122 candidates have filed nominations for the post of sarpanch. Similarly, 512 and 22 candidates submitted their papers for the posts of panchayat samiti and zilla parishad member respectively | P3 Litter, litter everywhere A man takes bath in Kuakhai river even as the bank is strewn with garbage in Bhubaneswar on Monday | Biswanath Swain 2 teens held in UK over Texas synagogue siege London: Police in the UK said on Monday that they are questioning two teenagers as part of an ongoing investigation into the siege at a synagogue in the US state of Texas, which ended in the death of British hostage-taker Malik Faisal Akram | P9 Synonym of kathak, complete kalakaar W hen Maharaj ji ac- till the sweat of his feet made cepted my invite to the floor slippery. Then he take a workshop at my would try his hands at varihome in Connecticut, ous instruments in the I was very nervous. But store. much to our surprise, he When he was 19-20, Mahaturned out to be a simple raj ji joined the Bharatiya man immersed in dance and Kala Kendra and started cremusic. He would eat home- ating a grammar for undermade food, make sketches on standing every movement. paper and after the work- He introduced many new shop even invite all parents sams, the ending pose of a and sing for them. When a dancer. All these experilife opens up before you like ments were very well rethat how does one start to de- ceived by the audience durscribe it! ing the late 50s and early 60s. Pandit Birju Maharaj was He also choreographed many a legend in his lifetime, a successful dance dramas. synonym for Kathak and a Maharaj ji later joined complete KaKathak Kendra. lakaar, an artist As he had many par excellence. inter national Born as Brij Mostudents, he simhan Mishra in plified his comthe illustrious positions by family of Ishmaking them wari Prasad, numerical. He with Kalka-Bindbroke long rhythadin Maharaj as mic composiNeelima Beri his grandfathers tions into playful and Achhan Ma- Director of Kalaleen Center words for kids. haraj as his fafor Traditional Learning M a n y o f h i s ther, he further complicated added tremendously to the tihais (polyrhythmic techrepertoire of his heritage. nique) were made playful for Maharaj ji passed away in the audience while retaining Delhi on Monday He was 83. their complexities. . Maharaj ji started his taalim Maharaj ji performed exfrom his father at a very ten- tensively all over India and der age, but he was only nine abroad and recalled many when his father passed away hilarious incidents from this . He then learnt from his illus- time. One particularly memtrious uncles, Shambhu Ma- orable one was at Jhansi. haraj and Lachhu Maharaj. T h e rowdy c rowd w a s They had very different brought under control by styles of dancing, one plac- him by making an extempoing emphasis on the mascu- re piece of Rani of Jhansi line style and the other on fighting the British. the feminine (Lasya). He told Maharaj ji then set up his us stories of how he had to institute, Kalashram. He was keep their styles different very fond of spicy street food for maintaining peace with and malai of Lucknow. He his uncles. loved my paranthas and In 1953, Kapila Vatsyayan, called me paranthewali for a disciple of Achhan Maha- quite some time. He also raj, called Birju to Delhi to loved gadgets of all types but work at Sangeet Bharati. He not in black colour. He was would go to the school every also the first Kathak artist to morning and do his riyaaz r e c e i v e the Padma in a store room for 4-5 hours Vibhushan. China grew at 8.1% in 2021 on low base effect E x p r ess Ne w s S e r v i c e @ New Delhi CHINESE economy grew 8.1% in 2021, the fastest in 10 years, driven by low base effect. The annual growth rate is lower than economists’ average estimates of 8.4%. However, GDP growth in the fourth quarter at 4% bettered analysts’ expectation of 3.6%, data re- leased on Monday showed. Macroeconomic futures showed that fixed asset investments in 2021 grew 4.9%, beating expectations of a 4.8% growth. Investment in real estate rose 4.4%, while that in infrastructure was up 0.4%. Investment in manufacturing shot up by 13.5% in 2021 from a year ago. Industrial production registered a 4.3% year-on- year growth in December 2021 beating analyst’s estimate of 3.6%. Though the 2021 growth rate looks impressive, it is more a recovery from the Covid-driven slump in 2020, when growth had fallen to 2.2%. Analysts are not bullish on China as growth may slip again in future. According to a recent World Bank re por t, China’s growth will moderate to at 5.1% in 2022, owing to lingering effects of the pandemic and tighter regulations in certain sectors. It expects GDP to grow at 5.2% in 2023. Retail sales in December only grew 1.7% against ana- Pandit Birju Maharaj 4 Feb 1938 - 17 Jan 2022 lysts’ expectation of 3.7% . Unemployment rate among 16-24 age group remained high at 14.3%. Consumer spending in rural areas remains below pre-pandemic levels. Foreseeing a slump in GDP growth in 2022, China’s central bank on Monday cut key lending rates by 10 basis points, for the first time since April 2020. 555.55 carat rare black diamond lands in Dubai Auction house Sotheby’s Dubai has unveiled a diamond that’s literally from out of this world. Sotheby’s calls the 555.55-carat black diamond — believed to have come from outer space — “The Engima.” | P12
Express Network Private Limited publishes thirty three E-paper editions of The New Indian Express newspaper , thirty two E-paper editions of Dinamani, one E-paper edition of The Morning Standard, one E-paper edition of Malayalam Vaarika magazine and one E-paper edition of the Indulge - The Morning Standard, Kolkatta.