villupuram l thursday l january 27, 2022 l `9.00 l PAGES 12 l city EDITION TCS, infy among world’s most valuable i.t. brands Six Indian firms are among the world’s fastest-growing IT Services brands, according to Brand Finance’s new report Accenture strongest it services brand Accenture has retained the title of world’s most valuable and strongest IT services brand, with record brand value of $36.2 billion. Apart from TCS (2nd spot), Infosys (3rd), Wipro (7th), HCL (8th), Tech Mahindra (15th) and LTI (22nd) are the other Indian IT services companies on the London-based global brand valuation firm’s top 25 list, released on Wednesday ■ Tik Tok U.S. TECH GIANT IBM PUSHED TO 4TH SLOT ■ Both TCS (brand value $16.8 bn) and Infosys ($12.8 bn) have beaten IBM, whose value slipped to $10.6 bn after it hived off its managed infra services business as a new entity called Kyndryl A global turn to remote working as well as digitalisation facilitated expansion of IT services hubs within India | P10 Fastest growing brand in the world with an astounding 215% growth 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 Stalin takes up crusader mantle, to launch national social justice federation inclusive growth for everyone. @ Chennai Stalin also pointed out that the path towards social justice In a move that is likely to pro- was not made in a day, but pel him to the national level as painstakingly laid over deca champion of social justice, ades, stone by stone, with sweat Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and and blood of various trendsetDMK president MK Stalin on ters like Dr Natesan, Dr T M Wednesday announced Nair, Sir P Theagarthat he would launch aya, AT Paneerselvam, an All India FederaPanagal Rajah, Perition for Social Justice. yar E V Ramasamy, The soon-to-be CN Annadurai and M launched federation Karunanidhi in Tamil will be open to leaders Nadu, and Jyotirao of all oppressed and Phule, BR Ambedkar depressed classes from and VP Singh at the across India and those national level. who are truly con- Union open It was this heritage cerned about social to pan-India that made DMK take justice. “Let us roar toup the cause of deleaders gether saying reservapressed societies to reCM Stalin said tion is our right,” he store their rightful the federation said, presiding over a seats in medical eduwould be open to national webinar on cation in all States and leaders of all the topic ‘Taking fornot just Tamil Nadu, oppressed and ward the struggle for Stalin said, adding depressed social justice and joint that to continue the classes across national programme journey on the path to India to further fo r s o c i a l j u s t i c e achieving the welfare the cause of movement’. of the depressed and social justice Stalin said the fedoppressed, social juseration would work to tice across the country achieve the principles of feder- needs to be implemented. alism. It will provide prompt Questioning the claim of cersuggestions for all States to ad- tain persons that the BJP had here to laws related to social jus- given 27 per cent reservation tice. “The percentage of back- for OBCs in all-India medical ward, oppressed communities quota on a platter, Stalin gave a may differ with each State. How- detailed account of the various ever, the ideology of social jus- stages of legal battle the DMK tice is the same,” he said. The undertook to realise this quota initiative will strive to ensure for OBCs. Continued on: P5 EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE Green drive More charging points for EVs soon across TN S G U R U V A N M I K A N AT H A N @ Chennai If you use an electric vehicle (EV) or plan to, your dream of doing long trips is now closer to reality. Public charging stations (PCS) soon won’t just be at Metro stations, as the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) plans to set them up across the State. “The Central government had given instructions to set up PCS in 2020, but this wasn’t possible due to the pandemic. We are now preparing a new tariff for PCS, and waiting for the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission’s (TNERC) approval,” said a senior TANGEDCO official. P r e s e n t l y, TA N G E D C O charges Metro stations for PCS usage based on the existing commercial tariff. The Centre had said PCS should be set up every 25 km on both sides of highways, and TANGEDCO is working to implement this, the official added. On January 14, the Ministry of Power said the corporation can invite young entrepreneurs to set up PCS. Explaining the need for more PCS, G Veeramani, a resident of Chinmaya Nagar in Chennai, said, “I can ride up to 50 km if I charge by two-wheeler for seven or eight hours. Within the city I can charge it at Metro , stations for `10 per hour, long rides are impossible since there are no charging stations on national highways. More people would buy EVs if this issue is resolved.” Veeramani’s two-wheeler has a lead-acid battery and can travel up to 30 kmph. He bought it in 2019 for `52,000, and the model’s on-road price is now `79,000. Continued on: P5 Azad readies to do an Amarinder Expected to float party; won’t have pre-poll pact with the BJP in J&K but would be open to alliance after elections S hahi d F ari d i @ New Delhi Veteran Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad is all set to ‘do an Amarinder’ on the Congress party, albeit in a phased manner. Highly placed sources said that Azad is ready to float a new political party in Jammu and Kashmir, where he had once headed a Congress-led coalition government as chief minister. Azad’s new political party would not enter into a formal pre-poll seat-sharing agreement with the BJP but would not shy away from a post-poll understanding if numbers so dictate, sources said. He has already addressed a series of well-attended public meetings in Jammu & Kashmir. And a large number of his supporters from within the Con- Russia US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman said on Wednesday that the US believes Russian President Vladimir Putin will use force against Ukraine between now and the middle of February | P9 Ghulam Nabi Azad Bouquets & brickbats With the Centre tactically placing Ghulam Nabi Azad on the Padma list, the gulf between the G23 leaders in the Congress and the Gandhi family loyalists was back in focus. Kapil Sibal, Anand Sharma and Raj Babbar greeted Azad saying it was well deserved, but Jairam Ramesh urged him to reject the award P7 The protesters are opposing the Railways’ decision to hold the examination in two stages, saying the second stage for final selection is tantamount to cheating those who have cleared the first stage of the computer-based test released on January 15 E xpress N ews S ervice @ Chennai A train burns after it was set on fire at Gaya Junction in Bihar on Wednesday | PTI Angry job aspirants set train on fire in Bihar, Railways cancels exams E xpress N ews S ervice a passenger train was set on fire on Wednesday as hundreds of job aspirants stepped up their protest against the anomalies in the recent tests conducted by the Railway Recruitment Board for Non-Technical Popular Categories (NTPC). As protests entered the third day, an agitated crowd stormed the Gaya Junction, raising slogans, and set fire to the BhabhuaPatna Inter City Express. Nobody was injured. The protesters squatted on railway tracks, vandalised players in the Kashmir Valley — the National Conference and the People’s Democratic Party . Altaf Bukhari’s Apni Party (called the King’s party in Kashmir for its proximity with the BJP), Sajjad Lone’s People’s Conference and Ghulam Nabi Azad’s new party are expected to work in tandem to beat the big two in the Valley . The process of delimitation of Assembly constituencies in J&K is underway and once it is completed, elections would be announced in the state. Both the BJP and Azad’s party would go into the election with the promise of restoration of statehood for J&K. As the decision of statehood restoration would be taken by the Central government, the promise may help the BJP sweep elections in the Jammu- Udhampur region. But that may not be enough to form the next government in J&K. A lot, therefore, would depend on the performance of Azad’s party . Sources say that the announcement of Padma Bhushan for Azad is just the beginning of the build up. A slew of other measures are in the pipeline to pitch him at the centre of Valley politics. With his plan to break away from the Congress finalised, Azad appears set to have the last laugh on the Congress joke that his parents named him Ghulam Nabi with the hope that he will be a servant (Ghulam) of the Prophet (Nabi) knowing little that he will end up being a servant of successive Congress presidents. Not true, he can say now. Urban local body polls to be held on February 19 Why the protest @ New Delhi / Patna likely to invade ukraine by mid-feb gress party have resigned from their posts in J&K. While there have been speculations about BJP’s support to Azad’s outreach, the Congress leadership confirmed its suspicions about his activities by removing him from its central disciplinary committee. The stage now seems set for the septuagenarian Azad to begin a new inning. The BJP, which has had a strong base in the Jammu-Udhampur region but lacks support in the Muslim-dominated Kashmir Valley has been work, ing hard to get friendly parties to win seats in the Valley. Though the BJP is said to have propped up a couple of small outfits like the Apni Party for the purpose, it is banking big on Azad’s new party to make a serious dent on the two main property clashed with security , forces and targeted trains, hitting services. In view of the protests, the Railways said it has suspended its NTPC and Level 1 exams. In a bid to calm frayed nerves, Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw set up a high-level committee headed by Deepak Peter Gabriel, principal executive director of industrial relations in the ministry, to examine their grievances. Earlier, he ordered the postponement of the second stage of computer-based test of NTPC, which was slated to start from February 15 across India. He also requested the job as- pirants not to destroy public property. He said more than one crore people applied for 35,281 vacancies notified under the NTPC. “The Railways shortlisted 7,05,446 candidates for the second stage of computerbased test, the miniter added. Wednesday’s incident was a sequel to violent protests started in Patna, Bhojpur, Muzaffarpur, Buxar, Nalanda, and Sitamarhi and other districts in the past three days. In Uttar Pradesh, police arrested two persons and lodged a case against 1,000 unidentified people for allegedly rioting and blocking the train tracks. After a decade, elections to urban local bodies in the State are set to be held on February 19. The votes will be counted on February 22, and indirect polls for chiefs of urban local bodies, including mayors, will be on March 4, State Election Commissioner V Palanikumar announced here on Wednesday . A total of 2.79 crore voters are set to elect 12,738 ward councillors across 21 city corporations, 138 municipalities and 490 town panchayats. “Filling of nominations will commence on January 28 and end on February 4. The last date to withdraw nominations is February 7. A total of 31,029 polling booths will be set up, of which 5,794 will be in Chennai,” Palanikumar told reporters. EVMs will be used, and all the procedures, including filling, withdrawal, and scrutinisation of nominations, will be recorded on CCTV cameras. Palanikumar said all safety Key dates Filing of nominations: Jan 28 - Feb 4 Securitisation: Feb 5 Deadline to withdraw nominations: Feb 7 Polling: Feb 19, Counting: Feb 22 End of poll procedure: Feb 24 First meeting of elected ward councillors: Mar 2 Elections for posts of chief of ULBs: Mar 4 precautions listed by the health department in view of the pandemic will be complied with. “Polling will be held between 7 am and 6 pm. Covid patients will be allowed to exercise their franchise in the last hour.” Palanikumar further said a maximum of three persons, including candidates, will be permitted to participate in door-todoor campaigning. “Up to 100 people are allowed in indoor meetings.” Continued on: P5 express read Schools might reopen in Feb for Classes 10, 11, 12 Chennai: With Board exams for Classes 10, 11 and 12 scheduled in May, schools might reopen for these students in February, School Education Minister Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi said, adding that the Illam Thedi Kalvi scheme is aiding younger students | P2 Back home, TN tableaux steal show Chief Minister MK Stalin flags off Tamil Nadu’s tableaux at Island Grounds in Chennai, from where they will be taken to all districts of the State. The theme for the tableaux, which was intended to be part of the Republic Day parade in New Delhi, was rejected by the Cental committee last week. Following this, the tableaux were showcased in the parade at Chennai on Wednesday, and proved to be the cynosure of eyes | Ashwin Prasath | P4 Pomp and pageantry Indian Army’s Rajput Regiment, wearing the uniform of 1950 and carrying .303 rifle, during the Republic Day parade in New Delhi on Wednesday; and Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the National War Memorial | Shekhar Yadav ‘Lankan’ men thrash four fishers from Tamil Nadu Nagapattinam: In the third such incident in a week, four fishermen from Nagapattinam district were brutally assaulted and robbed by assailants allegedly from Sri Lanka on Tuesday. The fishermen said the assailants arrived in two boats and demanded that they hand over their equipment | P5 Covishield, Covaxin price likely to be capped at `275 per dose E xpress N ews S ervice @ New Delhi The price of Covishield and Covaxin is likely to be capped at `275 per dose after it gets regular market approval from India’s drug regulator, reports said. Currently, Covaxin is priced at `1,200 per dose while Covishield costs `780 in private facilities. The cost includes a service charge of `150. A Subject Expert Committee on Covid-19 of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation had on January 19 approved regular market approval to the two vaccines for use in adult population, subject to certain conditions. The government, however, is yet to announce the conditions for the market sale. According to reports, the authorities had asked the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) to start working on the pricing to make it affordable. Although the price will be capped at `275, an additional service charge of `150 will be added. The two vaccines were granted Emergency Use Authorisation on January 3, 2021. Meanwhile, the number of active Covid cases nationally is coming down. On Wednesday, 2.85 lakh new cases were reported — 62,000 fewer than 3.47 lakh reported last week. A reduction of 13,824 cases has been recorded in the active Covid caseload in a span of 24 hours, according to a health ministry bulletin. The active cases have decreased to 22,23,018 and comprise 5.55% of the total infection, it added. Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu accounted for a bulk of the fresh cases reported in the past 24 hours at 49,771, 48,905 and 29,976, respectively . Elsewhere, the case load is easing, with the number of active Covid-19 cases in Delhi halving in just 12 days after rising to a high of 94,160 on January 13. NATIONWIDE Jan 25 Jan 26 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 2,55,874 2,85,914 2,67,753 2,99,073 614 665 tamil nadu Jan 25 Jan 26 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 30,055 25,221 48 29,976 27,507 47 Jab-o-meter Take your shot January 25 51,64,473 doses January 26 22,10,813 doses Total doses 1,63,81,97,873
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