NEW DELHI 03 DECEMBER 2023 SUNDAY `12 PAGES 24 facebook/TheMorningStandard twitter.com/TheMornStandard https://epaper.morningstandard.in LIGHTNESS OF BEING PLUS: 12 PAGES Gracious Glory of Gara MAGAZINE EXCLUSIVE VOICES The Foreign Hand The Hunger Games Oppn demands House debate on Moitra, Manipur Pushpesh Pant Ravi Shankar Anu Aggarwal Sathya Saran S Vaidhyasubramaniam Shyam Bhatia Prabhu Chawla Anuradha Goyal Y E S H I S E L I @ New Delhi QATAR’S Ministry of Interior has agreed to grant eight naval veterans facing capital punishment in Doha another consular access, which is likely to be on Sunday December 3. , The hearing on November 30 in Qatar’s court of appeal was a long one. The court gave each of the naval veterans a chance to share their narrative. “It was probably for the first time that the eight naval veterans got a chance to speak at length in court. The next hearing date has been fixed. In addition, Qatar’s Ministry of Interior granted consular access, which will be within a day or two. This will be the fourth consular access till now,” said a source. The next hearing will be on December 7. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had a bilateral meeting with Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamas Al Thani on Saturday in Dubai on the sidelines of the COP28 initiative. Though there was no word on their dialogue, the meeting raised hopes on the repatriation of these veterans. Qatar’s Court of First Instance had on October 26 awarded death penalty to the eight naval veterans. After India’s legal team filed its appeal against the verdict, the first hearing was held on November 23. The court accepted the appeal and the hearing was on November 30. There is some optimism that the naval veterans may be repatriated to India. Till it actually happens, their families and India will continue to keep their fingers crossed. Last month they were given access to gym as their mental health was getting affected. COUNTING TODAY IN FOUR STATES THAT WENT TO POLLS LAST MONTH. IT COULD SET THE TREND FOR 2024 MADHYA PRADESH Seats: 230 CHHATTISGARH 77.15% Voter turnout Voters: 5.60 cr POLL OF EXIT POLLS: Cong: 107 BSP+: 2 (2.88 crore male and 2.78 crore female) Seats: 90 Voters: 2.03 cr (1.01 crore male and 1.02 crore female) 76.31% Voter turnout BJP: 118, Others: 3 TELANGANA Seats: 119, Voters: 3.26 cr (1.63 crore male and 1.63 crore female) POLL OF EXIT POLLS: BJP: 38 Others: 3 Cong+: 49 ON the flight to Hangzhou for the Asian Games, R Vaishali had turned to Srinath Narayanan about an issue. The 22-year-old from Chennai, who’s the elder sister of prodigy R Praggnanandhaa, was feeling she had been hovering around the 2450 mark for a long time. Srinath, who had faced the same issue back when he was an active player on the cir- Seats: 199 Voters: 5.26 cr (2.73 crore male and 2.51 crore female) POLL OF EXIT POLLS: Cong+: 84 BSP: 1 POLL OF EXIT POLLS BRS: 44 Cong: 62 BJP+: 7 AIMIM: 6 Seats: 40 Voters: 8.6 L (4.2 lakh male and 4.4 lakh female) 71.34% Voter turnout 75.45% Voter turnout BJP: 104 Others: 10 80.43% Voter turnout Counting of votes on Monday POLL OF EXIT POLLS: MNF: 16, ZPM: 15 Cong: 8 BJP: 1 No property tax for rural residential areas, says MCD A N U P V E R M A @ New Delhi THE AAP-ruled Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) has announced that house owners in rural areas will not have to pay property tax. Mayor Shelly Oberoi on Saturday announced that the municipal body would not collect house tax from any rural residential area. The house tax will not be collected from residential areas whether it falls under ‘lal dora’ or in the extended ‘lal dora’ in all villages spread across 70 assembly constituencies of the national capital, Oberoi said. “During the 15-year BJP rule in the civic body, people were harassed through property tax notices. Recently, we held several meetings with pradhans in rural areas. We followed that Secret of Detachment Low visibility, bad weather force diversion of 20 flights EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi MORE ON P8 up by having yet another meeting with officials. Directions were then issued not to collect property tax,” the mayor said. Oberoi said the tax levied on commercial properties in rural areas would, however, continue to remain the same. Around 2,168 roads in rural areas are notified under the MCD and the commercial properties on these roads will continue to pay property tax. Chaudhary Surendra Solanki, the pradhan of all 360 villages in Delhi, said, “We are happy that our voice was heard. We hope other issues will be sorted out soon.” AT least 20 flights were diverted and several were delayed due to bad weather at the Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi on Saturday . While 13 flights were diverted to Jaipur, four were diverted to Sri Guru Ram Dass Jee International Airport in Amritsar and one each was diverted to Chaudhary Charan Singh International Airport in Lucknow, to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport in Ahmedabad and to Chandigarh Airport. The diversions reportedly took place between 7.30 am and 10.30 am. In a post on microblogging platform, X, at around 8.10 am, authorities at the IGI Airport informed passengers that low visibility procedures were in effect due to adverse weather conditions. Meanwhile, air quality remained in the “very poor” category in several areas on Saturday, with the AQI (Air Quality Index) reaching 375 at Terminal 3 at 10 am. The air quality in Anand Vihar and Ashok Vihar was also recorded as “very poor”, with AQI readings of 388 and 386, respectively at 6 am. , The low visibility in several parts of the national capital is directly linked to air pollution. The smog, a mixture of smoke, dust, and other pollutants, reduces the ability of sunlight to penetrate the atmosphere, leading to hazy conditions and reduced visibility . EXPRESS READ Sanjay Singh chargesheet The ED on Saturday filed a charge sheet against AAP MP Sanjay Singh in connection with the Delhi excise policy-linked money laundering case, officials said. The prosecution complaint has been filed before a court under various sections of the PMLA. This is a supplementary charge sheet in this case as the agency had filed about five such complaints earlier. The AAP Rajya Sabha MP was arrested in October. P3 Tihar terminates 50 officers Manipur couple, kin beaten in city The Tihar Jail administration has served termination notice on its 50 employees after a verification drive found a mismatch in their biometric identification records, officials said on Saturday. Among these 50 terminated employees, 39 are warders, 9 are assistant superintendent and 2 are matron. The notice was served as per the direction of the Delhi Subordinate Services Selection Board. P3 A man from Manipur, his wife and his sister were allegedly assaulted by a group of people in southeast Delhi’s Sunlight Colony, police said on Saturday. An FIR under IPC Sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 341 (wrongful restraint), 354 (assault of criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) was lodged. P3 Leopard on prowl in Sainik Farms, 2 hurt India, China skip signing Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge A N U P V E R M A @ New Delhi ISRAEL AIR STRIKES HIT TARGETS IN SOUTH Israel pounded targets in the crowded southern half of the Gaza Strip on Saturday and ordered more neighbourhoods designated for attack to evacuate | P9 A leopard attacked two persons, leaving one of them critically injured, in the Sainik Farm area of south Delhi on Saturday A forest department official . said two trap cages have been set up to capture the big cat. According to Subodh Kumar, a beat officer from the forest department (Asola Bhatti Wildlife Sanctuary), two teams comprising 40 personnel of the forest department and Delhi Police have been deployed in the area. Locals said the leopard was sighted in the lanes of W-15, 17 19, 21 and 23 area of Sainik Farms. Subodh Kumar said for- est officials have cordoned off the area and are trying to create a safe passage for the animal to escape to the forest. “We received a call about a leopard being spotted at night. With the help of the local police, we conducted a search at 9:30 am and spotted the animal near a farmhouse,” Kumar said. It is a fully-grown leopard weighing at least 80kg, he added. The forest department has instructed people not to gather near the area where the animal was sighted. Two video clips of the leopard have surfaced on social media in which the animal can be seen loitering near a farmhouse. In one of the videos, a policeman is seen running, before the leopard jumps from a wall. However, this is not the first time that the wild cat was seen roaming around in NCR. Last year, residents of a housing society in Greater Noida spotted a leopard roaming free through the area. In another instance, authorities launched a search operation after locals spotted a leopard in Gurugram’s DLF Phase 5. In 2021, the forest Department put out an alert after videos of a leopard being spotted in Najafgarh surfaced. Vaishali third woman from India to become GM @ Chennai RAJASTHAN MIZORAM GRAND FEAT S W A R O O P S W A M I N AT H A N Gore Galore JUDGMENTDAYTODAY RAJESH KUMAR THAKUR AND PRANAB MONDAL Naval veterans on death row may get consular access today SWAMI SUKHABODHANANDA SPEAKS HAND OR LOTUS? OR BOTH? Parliament session set to be stormy; 19 bills lined up, including replacements to IPC, CrPC expensive depending on the yardstick applied, is a common @ New Delhi/Kolkata social practice, and it would be extremely difficult to link or atDEMANDS for a debate on the tribute accepting gifts to being ethics panel’s report recom- a money trial for deriving famending the expulsion of Ma- vours,” Chowdhury wrote. hua Moitra from the Lok Sabha, At the all-party meeting, the English nomenclatures for Trinamool leaders also urged three bills that seek to replace the gover nment not rush criminal laws, and the Manipur through the three criminals situation were among the host bills in this session, saying they of issues that figured in an all- will have major ramifications. party meeting on Saturday Floor leaders of the Opposiahead of the Parliation demanded propment session that beer time allotment for gins on Monday . raising the peopleThe winter session centric issues. The is expected to be issue of pending stormy as the ethics M G N R E G A p ay panel’s report on the ments for West Ben‘cash-for-query’ gal was also raised charges against Moibesides unemploytra is slated to be ta- ADHIR POSER ment and price rise. bled in Parliament The results of the ON ETHICS on Monday. Trinaassembly elections “How can the ethics mool Congress leadin five major states ers Sudip Bandho- committee chairman will also have their disclose what padhayaa and Derek echo in Parliament. happened in a O’Brien charged that Congress MP closed-door the ethics commitPramod Tiwari said meeting? Is this tee’s recommendathe Opposition ethical?” Cong tions had already flagged the issues of been leaked and de- leader in Lok Sabha Chinese ing ress, Adhir Ranjan manded a debate on price rise and ‘misthe issue. Other Op- Chowdhury asked in use’ of the Central position leaders, too, his letter to Speaker l aw e n fo rc e m e n t Om Birla supported the deagencies like the Enmand for discussion forcement Directoon the report on Moitra. rate and the CBI. Parallelly, Leader of OpposiParliamentary Affairs Ministion in the Lok Sabha and West ter Pralhad Joshi assured memBengal Congress chief Adhir bers that the government is Ranjan Chowdhury wrote to ready for discussions on all isSpeaker Om Birla seeking a fair sues. But the Opposition must investigation in the Moitra ensure an enabling environcase. He said if the panel’s rec- ment is created for a structured ommendation to expel her is ac- debate, he said. As many as 19 cepted, it would be an “extreme- bills have been listed, including ly serious punishment and has the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, wide ramifications”. the Bharatiya Nagrik Suraksha “Accepting gifts and giving Sanhita and the Bharatiya Sakgifts, which may appear to be shya Adhiniyam. Divinity’s New Dimension ‘You Make a Film Only When You Have a Good Script’ cuit, told her about his experiences. That small conversation 40,000 feet in the air has had the desired effect. As India went to sleep late on Friday Vaisha, li, after moving her queen to c7, forced her opponent Tamer Selbes to resign. In the process, she crossed the magical figure of 2500 ratin g points to become a Grandmaster (she had al- ready earned her third and final GM norm at the Qatar Masters in October). It was the latest in a long line of wins that has sent her soaring in recent months. After coming back from the Asian Games, she won the Grand Swiss to qualify for the Candidates next year. Then came the third and final GM norm. Now this. “Becoming a GM has been my goal since I started playing chess,” she said after the sec- It’s not easy to achieve this (become a Grandmaster) and only a few women have managed to do this in the world RB Ramesh, R Vaishali’s coach ond round game at the El Llobregat Open in Spain. “I was very excited but also felt some pressure. I’m very happy I finally managed to complete the title.” Coach R B Ramesh, who’s currently taking chess classes in Norway shared his two cents , with this daily “Her ambition . for many years was to become a GM and it happened now. It’s not easy to achieve this and only a few women have managed to do this the world over.” S V K R I S H N A C H A I TA N YA @ Dubai AS many as 116 countries signed the Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge on Saturday, agreeing to triple worldwide installed renewable energy generation capacity to at least 11,000 gigawatts and to double the global average annual rate of energy efficiency improvements to more than 4% by 2030. This is part of the Global Decarbonisation Accelerator (GDA), a major initiative launched by the COP28 Presidency at the World Climate Action Summit to speed up the energy transition. While India has already committed to tripling the renewable energy target as part of G20, which was again reiterated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi here on Friday, COP28 Presidency sources say India and China, major emitters, have not signed the Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge so far. On why India didn’t sign the pledge, Aarti Khosla, Director, Climate Trends, says, “There is an oblique sense that the tripling of RE must necessarily go together with phasing out of ZERO METHANE 50 firms, which represent over 40% of global oil production signed the Oil and Gas Decarbonization Charter, committing to zero methane emission and ending flaring by 2030 coal. India has defended its stance on coal especially as it has come to this COP where other large emitters like the US are still holding on to their gas expansion plans and EU despite the good looks on climate finance is still keeping room for gas. India doesn’t feel these c o u n t r i e s h ave t h e moral leverage to ask it to wind down on coal.” Vibhuti Garg, Director, South Asia with the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, said: “For India to meet its renewable energy goals, it would need triple the investments as well. India so far is managing its renewable energy growth story on its own but for tripling of capacity, India like many other countries in the Global South will need additional funding support.” P7
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