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 ■ ■ Anti-government demonstrators take part in a protest near the Lankan President’s office in Colombo on Sunday | AFP kozhikode l monday l may 16, 2022 l `9.00 l PAGES 12 l city EDITION One family, one ticket rule in sweeping Cong reforms Thomas arrives in shuttle lakshya sen Satwiksairak rankireddy and chirag shetty 50% posts to the U-50, and social re-engineering by giving half the party positions to weaker sections part of the Udaipur Declaration R a j e s h As n a n i @ Udaipur The Congress on Sunday adopted its Udaipur Nav Sankalp Declaration at the end of its chintan shivir, drawing up a comprehensive roadmap for wide-ranging internal reforms to make the party battle-ready for all upcoming elections till the Lok Sabha polls in 2024. A task force will be set up in the next 2-3 days to implement the decisions, Congress president Sonia Gandhi announced in her concluding address. Also, an advisory committee of Congress Working Committee (CWC) members headed by Sonia will be formed to deliberate on political issues. Earlier, the CWC vetted the reports of six dedicated panels on organisational, political, economic, agricultural, social justice and youth-related issues, which formed the crux of the Udaipur Declaration. Among the approved proposals was the ‘one family one tick, et’ rule, with exemption for big hitters in the party for five years, which was seen as tailormade for Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. As reported in these columns over the last two days, 50% representation to those below 50 years of age across the party organisation, and 50% inhouse representation to Sched- Devasahayam Pillai, 1st Indian layman to be canonised E x p r e ss N e w s S e r v i c e @T’Puram A decade after he was declared blessed, Devasahayam Pillai was conferred sainthood by Pope Francis at the Vatican around 2.30pm (IST) on Sunday . He is the first Indian layman to be canonised. The Pope Francis-led canonisation mass was held in St Peter’s Basilica. The mass, honouring 10 new saints, was attended by over 50,000 faithful from across the world as well as government delegations. In Kerala, Thiruvananthapuram Latin Archbishop Dr Thomas J Netto held s p e c i a l prayers at Palayam St Joseph’s Cathedral to mark the occasion. Special prayers were also held in churches linked to Devasahayam Pillai in Kottar diocese of Kanyakumari. Born Neelakanta Pillai to Vasudevan Nampoothiri and Devaki Amma on April 23, 1712, at Nattalam in Kanyakumari district — a part of the erstwhile Travancore kingdom — Devasahayam Pillai converted to Christianity in the 18th century . He was shot dead in the Aralvaimozhi forest of Kanyakumari on January 14, 1752, for upholding his faith. ● More on P5 Sonia Gandhi addressing the concluding session of the shivir in Udaipur | PTI Retirement age for party lawmakers From the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, half of Congress tickets will be given to those below 50 years of age. Also a retirement age will be fixed for those in Parliament, state legislatures and other elected posts uled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, OBCs and minorities at all levels were approved. Also, no one can hold a party position for more than five years. Other important elements of the declaration include a new a Mandal Samiti to strengthen the organisation, legally guaranteed MSP for all 23 crops, a farm debt relief commission, a return to pushing the public sector in the post-liberalisation era and demand for private sector quota in jobs. Also, Congress will set up three new departments — public insight, election management and national training. The party plans to start a National Training Institute to train the cadre with its policies, ideology and vision. It will also , set up a monitoring wing to keep a close eye on the performance of all party officials. One proposal the CWC rejected was on creating a Congress Parliamentary Board. It instead decided to set up a political affairs committee in each state and at the central level. Prominent among the mass action programmes the party conceived was a nationwide Kashmir to Kanniyakumari ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ from Gandhi Jayanti day on October 2 this year. “It will aim to preserve the foundational values of our Constitution that are under assault and will highlight the day-to-day concerns of our people,” Sonia said. She also announced the start of a mass contact programme, called Jan Jagran Abhiyan, at the district level from June 15. Sonia sought to energise the delegates, saying, “we will overcome — that is our determination, that’s our sankalp.” Kidambi Srikanth Rankireddy and Chirag were in their immaculate best during the doubles match against the experienced pair of Mohammad Ahsan and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo, beating them 18-21 23-21 21-19. They saved four match points in the second game before clinching the third 21-19. Gave India 2-0 advantage before second singles match The young star handed India 1-0 lead after beating world No 5 Anthony Sinisuka Ginting in a gruelling three games 8-21 21-17 21-16 The experienced player controlled the game to beat Asian Games gold medallist Jonatan Christie 21-15 23-21 to give India victory Behind the scenes of champions S w a r o o p S w a m i n at h a n @ Chennai The Impact Arena in Bangkok has played host to some of the biggest personalities and bands in the world of music. Think Roger Waters, Coldplay, Beyonce, BTS and Britney Spears. On Sunday it was jiving, heav, ing and grooving to the humble dhol. While the Indian fans in the stands were cranking up the noise in the arena, the Indian players tasked with rewriting history went about it in a calm, unhurried manner. When the weight of 73-years of history finally lifted at about 3.15 PM IST on Sunday it had a , certain authority to it. Kidambi Srikanth, who had been invincible all week, stretched his record to 6-0. By the time he saw off Indonesia’s Jonatan Christie in str ght games and threw ai his racquet on the green turf before being enveloped by his onrushing teammates, the story had already started to sink in. “India are Thomas Cup champions for the first time ever”. Of course, like every story, th are multiple protagonists ere who made this dream a reality . Laksh a Sen who took down y Olympic bro ze medallist Ann thony Ginting on the first match on Sunday HS Prannoy . , a controversial direct selection that set the tongues wagging even before the team had bo o ked their flight to the Thai Bonding exercise The lead players were very secure about their place in the side. Coach U Vimal Kumar spoke about this in the postmatch conference and it was in evidence when the side’s youngest player, Priyanshu Rajawat, received the Thomas Cup on the podium The state remains on high alert as five districts in central and northern parts are expected to receive very heavy rain on Monday The very high rain is . likely to remain scattered as it happened on Saturday night. The intensity will depend on the strengthening of westerly winds from the Arabian Sea, according to weather experts. They pointed out that intensity of the rain remained low on Sunday as the wind speed did not pick up as forecast. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) had issued red alerts in five districts in central and northern Kerala, indicating high to very high rain on Sunday . “The speed of wind remains difficult to predict. If it gains strength, there will be heavy rain on Monday. The sky will remain cloudy for two to three Indian team mob Kidambi Srikanth who won the third match against Indonesia to seal the gold in Thomas Cup | AP capit , keeping his cool on al multiple occ sions. Srikanth a himself br g ng his zen-like in i focus ga after ga e, match me m after match while qu etly guidi ing the side’s many young players. The doubles st rs, Satwika sairaj Rankireddy and Ch ag ir Shetty who kept chipping aw y , a even when it looked the effort wasn’t translating into re ults. s The biggest factor, though, was the side’s mentality Heads . never dropped, shoulders never drooped and the belief never Central, northern dists to bear brunt of downpour High alert as five districts in central and northern parts are expected to receive very heavy rain on Monday 1 Intensity of the rain remains low on Sunday as the wind speed did not pick up as predicted by the Met department 2 Kodungallur in Thrissur receives 200mm rainfall, Aluva gets 190mm & Ernakulam city region records 152mm 3 4 People wading through knee-deep water at V K Thankappan Road in Kochi. Heavy rain in the city till Sunday morning inundated many low-lying areas | A Sanesh Falling trees disprut traffic, damage houses in Kollam, Kozhikode and Alappuzha days,” said Rajeevan Erikkulam, meteorologist of Kerala State Disaster Management Authority . The IMD has forecast squally weather with wind speed reaching 40-50 kmph likely to prevail and wildlife sanctuaries in Thiruvananthapuram till further notice. The shutters of Aruvikara dam were lifted to 20 centimetres in the wake of the high rainfall in the catchment area. P2 along and off Kerala coast till May 19. It has warned fishermen from venturing into the sea during the period. The authorities have banned visitors at various tourist spots including eco tourism centres When HS Prannoy went down clutching his ankle in the semifinals, it looked like panic stations. However, he fought through the pain barrier for the greater good. If anything defines this team, it’s this. It’s a bunch of individuals who make this team greater than the sum of their parts The depth Strong winds to bring more rain, alert stays E x p r e ss N e w s S e r v i c e @T’Puram Triumph of the collective This time last year, Lakshya Sen was No 23 in the world. A fantastic last year, including winning a bronze at the Worlds, has helped him become the lead player. This gave both Prannoy and Srikanth winnable matches coming in as the 2nd and 3rd singles players. End result? They returned a record of 11-0 wavered as all of them embraced all of sport’s only true currency Giving up was not an . option. In modern sporting parlance, it’s known as ‘mamba mentality’ and that’s what this team embraced throughout the week. The proof of this is in the pudding. Lakshya suffering from food poisoning yet answering the call of duty on the very first day of the tournament and saving his best for last. This team lost the opening singles rubber on back-to-back days in the quarterfinals and semifinals. This team won a deciding rubber twice on back-toback days against Malaysia and Denmark to enter the final. This side was 21 points away from not qualifying for the final. In the end, though, this side became only the second in the meet’s history to win the event after failing to top the group phase. Mentality monsters from start to finish in the backdrop of dhols. Full coverage: P11 It’s official: AAP, Twenty20 float new front in Kerala EX P RE S S NEW S S ERVICE @Kochi The Aam Admi Party (AAP) and the cor porate-backed Twenty20 have joined hands to float a new political front in Kerala, People’s Welfare Alliance (PWA). Announcing this at a massive rally in Kizhakkambalam near Kochi on Sunday, Delhi Chief Minister and AAP national convener Arvind Kejriwal sounded optimistic that the alliance would come to power in the state. “First, we brought changes in Delhi, and then in Punjab. Next, we will change Kerala... We offer free electricity, water, education and healthcare to people in Delhi. If you want to bring a change in Kerala and get all these welfare measures, you have to support us,” Kejriwal said, addressing the rally Twenty20 chief coordinator Sabu M Jacob greets Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal in Kizhakkambalam, Kochi | A Sanesh in Hindi. The Delhi CM said, “We went on to form government in Delhi thrice. Now we have formed the government in Punjab too. If it’s possible, why can’t we do it in Kerala?” Claiming that people elected AAP because of “our good deeds”, Kejriwal said his party has shown to the nation that it can fight any major political party in elections. ● More on P4 egg-straordinary Python lays eggs on NH, Uralungal halts culvert work for 54 days G e o r g e P o i k ay i l @Kasaragod It wasn’t any disaster or technical snag that prompted Uralungal Labour Contract Cooperative Society (ULCCS) to suspend the construction of a culvert as part of the work on a four-lane highway in Kasaragod for nearly two months. It was nature. On March 20, workers were engaged in building a culvert as part of the widening of NH66 at Eriyal near CPCRI when they spotted an Indian rock python curled up inside a burrow. Though it is a time-bound project, the society agreed. Approaching the National Highways Authority of India and getting its permission to stop the work would have been cumbersome P Biju, divisional forest officer of Kasaragod The forest department was alerted. The officials who arrived at the spot called in snake catcher Ameen Adkathbail. Ameen checked the burrow and found two dozen python eggs, with the mother curled around them. Soon, the work was halted for 54 days on the request of the forest department to allow the mother python to hatch all 24 eggs. Ameen aided the department and checked on the eggs daily to ensure they hatched safely . “All 24 eggs hatched. We released 15 snake babies into the wild on Saturday nine were re, leased on Sunday night,” said Ameen. The burrow, possibly the handiwork of a porcupine, was 4-ft below the road level and would have gone unnoticed were it not for the earthmover Cracks that denote hatching seen on the python eggs found by workers in Kasaragod (right) snake catcher Ameen Adkathbail that dug up the mud for the culvert. Soon after they spotted the snake and the eggs, the workers had alerted forest department. Ameen, who runs an aluminum fabrication unit, was called in. The officials also asked ULCCS to consider suspending work on the culvert. “Though it is a time-bound project, the society agreed. Approaching the National Highways Authority of India and getting the nod to stop the work would have been cumbersome,” said divisional forest officer of Kasaragod P Biju. ● More on P5
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