chennai l tuesday l august 9, 2022 l `9.00 l PAGES 12 l vellore EDITION India to restrict entry-level Chinese smartphones: Report Chinese makers could be barred from selling phones cheaper than `12,000 in the Indian market, according to Bloomberg representative picture Move to help domestic brands The proposed move is aimed at helping homegrown brands such as Lava and MicroMax and pushing Chinese giants out of the lower segment of the world’s second-biggest mobile market, the news agency reported. The development comes amid India’s tough stand against Chinese manufacturers and recent raids on OPPO, Vivo and Xiaomi ■ 50% Body blow to Xiaomi, others ■ Exclusion from India’s entry-level market would hurt brands like Xiaomi that rely heavily on India to drive growth Industry estimates say smartphones under `12,000 contributed to a third of India’s sales volume for the quarter through June, with Chinese brands accounting for 80% of those shipments Estimated share of Xiaomi and realme in the sub `12k segment 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-Big Bang theory scientists face censorship by int’l journals BA L A C H AU H A N @ Bengaluru Scientists from across the globe, including India, who are refuting the Big Bang theory on cosmology are facing resistance and censorship from journals and archives of international repute where they get their research papers published for peer review. The Big Bang theory holds that the universe was born out of a highly compressed, dense and microscopic point (called singularity), which exploded with a huge force some 13.8 billion years ago, resulting in everything arising from that singularity moving outwards in all directions. From this, all cosmic matter (as we know it today) was formed at different stages through time until now. Twenty-four astronomers and physicists from 10 countries including reputed astrophysicist Jayant V Narlikar of Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Prof Sisir Roy of National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS) and Prof Amitabha What’s the Big-bang theory? According to a NASA explainer, the Big Bang theory indicates how the universe began — as just a single point, then expanded and stretched to grow as large as it is right now. It is still believed to be stretching Electricity (Amend) bill introduced in LS, sent to panel amid Oppn’s rage Monsoon session ends four days ahead of schedule Ra k e s h Ku m a r @New Delhi The controversial Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2022, which is expected to escalate Centre-state confrontation, was introduced in the Lok Sabha on Monday and later sent to the Standing Committee on Energy for vetting. The bill mandates state electricity regulatory commissions (SERCs) to specify regulations to progressively reduce cross-subsidy, which is subsidising one set of customers at the cost of others. It requires SERCs to adhere to the National Electricity Tariff Policy while determining cross-subsidy . Subsidies will not be accounted for while fixing tariff; subsidies will be provided directly to consumers. The bill allows multiple distribution licences within the same area of supply No applicant who fulfils all the con. ditions can be refused a licence. It also provides for graded revision in tariff over a year besides mandatory fixing of maximum and minimum tariff by the appropriate commission. Introducing the Bill, Union power minister R K Singh called it “pro-people and for the growth of our economy” that would allow consumers to choose from multiple electricity distributors. But experts feel otherwise. According to the All India Power Engineers Federation (AIPEF), it would intrude into the powers and functions of the state governments, abolish subsidies and cross-subsidies and harm farmers and consumers alike. “It seeks to Centralise almost all functions of the DISCOMS as well as SERCs, thereby changing the entire character of the electricity supply industry and existing legislation as well as the federal structure,” said Shailendra Dubey, chairman of AIPEF. He also said the area of license has not been clearly defined. “This would lead to cherry-picking and eventually in privatising profits and nationalising losses.” Former Power Secretary Subash Chandra Garg told this newspaper the sector can be reformed only when state distribution utilities are dismantled, private entities take over business like in Delhi and states support farmers and other vulnerable sections by providing direct benefit transfers. “Unfortunately, this bill has none of these provisions.” E x p r e ss N e ws Se r v i ce @ New Delhi Privatisation of profit? It envisages allowing multiple private companies to provide electricity in the same area, a provision that could lead to privatisation of profits and nationalisation of losses - Manish Tewari, Cong It’s contrary to the assurances given by the govt to the SKM during their protest. It had that that point agreed to shelve amendments to the Electricity Act Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Cong The proposed amendments are dangerous... They will only benefit a few power distribution companies Arvind Kejriwal, Delhi CM Electricity is on the concurrent list. It is the bounden duty of the Centre to have effective consultations with state governments before introducing the bill - N K Premachandran, RSP Farmers will continue to get free power. There will be no roll back of subsidy - R K Singh, power minister MONSOON session of Parliament ended four days ahead of schedule on Monday as both Houses were adjourned sine die. According to the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs, the session was supposed end on August 12 but was curtailed due to completion of essential government business and in view of two public holidays ahead -Muharram on August 9 and Raksha Bandhan on August 11. However, the Opposition accused the government of running away from discussing bills and other important issues. The session witnessed repeated disruptions with the Opposition members aggressively raising the issues of inflation and the ED action, while the BJP vociferously protested Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury’s Rashtrapatni remark. A record number of Opposition 27 MPs were suspended — 23 from Rajya Sabha and 4 from Lok Sabha — for unruly behavour. The government had set a target of passing 32 Bills, including 24 new ones, but the Lok Sabha could pass only seven and the Rajya Sabha five. The Lok Sabha functioned for 48% of the scheduled time while the Rajya Sabha functioned for 44% of the time. Attacking the government for curtailing the session, Trinamool Congress Rajya Sabha MP Derek O’Brien tweeted, “This is the seventh consecutive time (since Budget Session 2020) Parliament session has been cut short. Stop mocking Parliament. We will fight for its sanctity ...” Congress Rajya Sabha MP Jairam Ramesh said, “Early adjournment is at the government’s request. We were prepared to discuss Bills.” The monsoon session is supposed to be the last one to be held in the old building as the government plans to hold the winter session in the new building expected to be completed before the next session. Ghosh of Indian National Sci- cosmology and specifically on ence Academy (INSA) from In- the Big Bang hypothesis. Run dia are among the scientists by Cornell University arXiv is , protesting the censorsupposed to provide an ship of papers critical open public forum for of the Big Bang hypothresearchers to exesis, by the open prechange pre-publication print website arXiv. papers, without under“As scientists entaking to peer-review gaged in the study of them. But during June the cosmos and the re2022, arXiv rejected Jayant V Narlikar lation of phenomena in three papers which are space to those on Earth, we critical of the validity of the strongly protest arXiv’s censor- Big Bang hypothesis .No speship of controversial papers on cific reason was given,” the sci- Nitish set to bolt, lead New govt with RJD, Left? Shah i d F a r i d i @ New Delhi Bihar is all set to have a Maharashtra’s Maha Vikas Aghadi-type coalition government comprising all non-NDA parties, as Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal (United) indicated it may snap it ties with the BJP . Sources said Nitish has already spoken to interim Congress president Sonia Gandhi and the leaders of the three Left parties — CPI(ML), CPI(M), and CPI, besides Lalu Yadav and Tejashwi Yadav, leaders of the main opposition party RJD. All opposition parties have agreed to support Nitish as the chief minister. According to sources, all supporting parties are likely to join the new government, which will be sworn in within this week. All the non-NDA parties have called their MLAs to Patna where a formal approval for supporting a new government would be sought from them. Congress general secretary in-charge of Bihar Bhakt Charan Das has flown into the state capital to iron things out. A formal announcement of Bag of Golds It was a day of domination from the paddlers and shuttlers as India collected a handful of gold, finishing fourth in the medals tally The introduction of a new data-driven system may be saving the lives of many pregnant women in Tirunelveli. While it is early days yet, officials said, since the launch of the ThaicareNellai network, the district has recorded only three maternal deaths between April and July In comparison, it recorded . 14 deaths in the same period in 2021. The system, aimed at improving maternal health, uses multiple data points to assess risk, stage interventions and ensure safe deliveries. Active since March, the programme Since May, only one maternal death was reported in Tirunelveli | V KARTHIKALAGU BJP in the last election. Singh did not elaborate, but hinted that former JD(U) president R C P Singh was at the centre of a conspiracy to split the party The JD(U) is. sued a show-cause notice to R C P Singh following which he resigned from the party’s membership. Speaking to reporters at Patna, JD(U) spokesperson K C Tyagi said, “Nitish Kumar is the undisputed leader of the JD(U). He commands respect in the rank and file. Whatever decision is taken by the party under his leadership will be accepted by everyone.” The RJD, too, has called a meeting of its lawmakers on Tuesday. RJD national vicepresident Shivanand Tiwary said both parties convening meetings of legislators was a clear indication that the situation was extraordinary “We . cannot ignore the fact that both parties, which together had sufficient numbers for a majority have convened such , meetings when an Assembly session is not round the corner,” Tiwary said. P8 Ready for embrace “If Nitish chooses to dump NDA, what choice do we have except embracing him? RJD is committed to fighting the BJP. If the CM joins this fight, we will have to take him along,” Shivanand Tiwary said Silver in hockey & cricket He may be 40 years old, but Sharath Kamal is still relentless in his pursuit of excellence. He finds that extra motivation for age-defying feats and this time at the Commonwealth Games he has medalled in each event he entered — teams gold, men’s doubles silver, mixed-doubles gold crowned them with singles gold. This was his seventh gold; he won India’s first-ever table tennis gold in 2006 Both the hockey men’s team and the women’s cricket team lost to Australia in their respective gold medal matches, finsihing with silver. While the Indian women lost late on Sunday night by nine runs, in hockey, the men were hammered 0-7 by the Australians on Monday Clean sweep in badminton express read this area, Tirunelveli is still lagging. The ThaicareNellai network involves the collection and entry of data, risk categorisation and mapping of risk factors, and lastly, counselling of patients after each hospital visit. These counsellors are from the Integrated Counselling and Testing Centres (ICTC). As many as 52 primary health centres (PHCs) and urban primary health centres (UPHCs), eight taluk and non-taluk hospitals, and the Tirunelveli Medical College Hospital are part of the network. Continued on: P5 24 candidates score perfect 100 in JEE-Main New Delhi: Twenty-four candidates have got the perfect score in the engineering entrance exam JEE-Main, results of which were announced on Monday, according to the National Testing Agency. The top scorers include two girl students | P7 Maharashtra cabinet expansion today Mumbai: Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde said he will expand his 40-day-old ministry on Tuesday. Senior BJP leaders on Monday assembled at deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis’ house to discuss the names of the probables | P8 In a first, TN govt calls for meet of V-Cs B I N ITA JA ISWA L @ Chennai Chief Minister MK Stalin will chair a meeting of vice-chancellors (V-Cs) of all State universities on August 17, Higher Education Minister K Ponmudy announced on Monday. The agenda, he said, is to develop a uniform syllabus for language courses, and improve the quality of education and research. But it’s also being seen as an assertion of power against Governor RN Ravi, who serves as the chancellor of these universities. Officials said Ravi is unlikely to be invited. This is the first time the higher education minister has called for such a meeting. Over the past few months, he’s been at loggerheads with Ravi over several issues, including the National Educational Policy (NEP). Just last month, he boycotted the Madurai Kamaraj University convocation ceremony and accused Ravi of politicising the event. The minister alleged that despite being the varsity’s pro chancellor, he was not consulted about the guests who were invited. “There’s more to the scheduled meeting than meets the eye. The Governor had in April organised a two-day conference of V-Cs in the Nilgiris, and recently he held another event to , felicitate State institutes for their achievements in the NIRF Ranking 2022. He has also been getting actively involved in convocation ceremonies of various universities. Now, the State higher education department is trying to show its authority ,” said a senior academician who wished not to be named. Sources in the higher education department said there are no plans to invite the Governor for the meeting. P5 Jab-o-meter August 7 34,75,330 doses Take August 8 26,69,118 doses PV Sindhu and young gun Lakshya Sen lived up to expectations by grabbing gold medals as India swept the singles badminton competition at the Commonwealth Games for the first time. Later in the day, Satwiksairaj Ranki Reddy and Chirag Shetty won gold in men’s doubles event ThaicareNellai turning the tide in Tirunelveli? was formally launched in May . “While handling patients’ data during the pandemic, we got the idea of using a similar framework to tackle the district’s high maternal mortality ratio (MMR),” explained Dr M Aazmi, a professor of community medicine at the Tirunelveli Medical College. “Collector V Vishnu took the initiative forward. Rather than just analysing the mortality factors following deaths, this framework helps mitigate health risks,” he said, adding that while Tamil Nadu has realised its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) target in breaking alliance with the BJP is likely to be made by the JD(U) after the meeting of its MPs and MLAs in Patna on Tuesday . Politics in Bihar took a critical turn on Sunday with JD(U) president Rajiv Ranjan Singh attacking his party’s ally BJP without naming it. Singh said attempts were made in the past to get JD(U) candidates defeated in Assembly elections. He said a ‘Chirag Model’ was used in Bihar by getting Ramvilas Paswan’s son Chirag Paswan to field candidates against the JD(U) to reduce the number of JD(U) MLAs in the state legislature. There were reports that Chirag was supported by the Golden age for Sharath M a t e r n a l h e a lt h S r ee m at h i M @ Tirunelveli entists wrote. Arindam Mal of the ISRO Ahmedabad and Sarbani Palit of the Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata also faced difficulty in having their research paper Redshift Periodicity and its Significance for Recent Observation, which counters the Big Bang hypothesis – published in peer-reviewed journals like Astronomy and Astrophysics Journal, and Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society continued on: P5 . your shot Total: 2,06,84,91,043 NATIONWIDE aug 7 aug 8 tamil nadu aug 7 aug 8 Fresh cases 18,738 16,167 Fresh cases Recoveries 18,558 15,549 Recoveries Deaths 40 41 Deaths 1,057 1,429 0 972 1,453 0 8-yr-old drowns while swimming in Ambattur apartment complex E x p r e ss N e ws Se r v i ce @ Chennai An eight-year-old girl drowned in a swimming pool at a high-rise apartment complex in Ambattur on Saturday. Accompanied by her mother, the Class 3 student had gone to the apartment to meet her friend. After spending some time in the friend’s house, the girl, B Dhananya, and her mother, Kanmani, went to the pool with Dhananya’s friend and her mother, the Ambattur Estate Police said. “A guard allowed them in only after the girls’ mothers signed a form saying they were responsible for the children’s safety,” said a senior police officer, adding that while the girls entered the three-to-four-ft-deep pool, their mothers sat nearby . After a while, Kanmani went to the restroom, and around that time Dhananya started drowning. People nearby, including the security guard, pulled her out of the water, the police officer said. “She was rushed to a private hospital nearby where she was declared dead on arrival. Her body was then sent to the Government Kilpauk Medical College for a post-mortem examination.” A case has been registered and an investigation is on.
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