thursDAY 21% 22 october, 2020 Of neonatal deaths attributable to ambient / household air pollution epaper.morningstandard.in facebook.com/TheMorningStandard twitter.com/TheMornStandard Toxic air killed 16.7 lakh Indians in 2019, reveals global study KASHMIR ANTI-PAK hoardings In Srinagar, hoardings remind people of atrocities by Pak tribes, militia in 1947 Page 8 Outdoor and household particulate matter pollution contributed to the death of 1.16 lakh infants in the first month of their life Largest risk factor for death A CAPITAL VIEW OF NEWS l New Delhi l J8.00 l PAGES 12 PM to meet 15 global fund houses for investment Ex press News Se rvice @ New Delhi Prime Minister Narendra Modi will soon meet 15 leading global fund houses which are keen to invest in India, Tarun Bajaj, secretary Department of , Economic Affairs (DEA), said on Wednesday . “Fund houses from all over the world are in touch with us and want us to provide good assets with stable returns,” Bajaj said while addressing a virtual event organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry . Govt relaxes onion import norms, to offload from buffer stock E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi/Mumbai With onion prices going north because of heavy rains damaging standing crops in Maharashtra and Karnataka, the Centre on Wednesday announced easing of its import norms till December 15. Parallelly, Tamil Nadu kept options open to supply onions through ration shops if needed. While the retail cost in Chennai was over `100 per kg, state minister Sellur K Raju tapped the Farm Fresh network for now to sell the kitchen staple at a subsidised `45 a kg. India is already importing onions from Egypt and Iran. While Maharashtra’s popular Lasalgaon variety of big onions fetches a retail price of `90-100 per kg, the Egypt and Iran consignments come at `4050. The downside is the imported varieties aren’t as hot on the palate as the Indian ones. The Consumer Affairs Ministry said it will offload more onion from its buffer stock into the open market to contain the price rise. An estimated kharif crop of 37 lakh tonnes is likely to start arriving in the mandis and soften prices, it added. To facilitate its import, the ministry said, “the government has relaxed the conditions for fumigation and additional declaration on Phytosanitary Certificate under the Plant Quarantine Order, 2003 for import up to December 15, 2020.” In other words, fumigation will now be done after the consignment lands in India. Sanjay Pingale, a trader, said 40-50 containers of onion from Egypt and Iran are imported each week. D E L H I C O V I D W AT C H status of cases Today Recovered Death Active cases Positive cases 3,444 47 -- 3,686 Cumulative 3,10,191 6,128 24,117 3,40,436 Patient Management Hospital Care centre Health centre Total beds Occupied Vacant 15,713 8,107 527 5,081 10,632 845 6,301* 278 249 Home Isolation: 14,227 *961 beds of CCC are occupied by persons under quarantine including travellers who came by Vande Bharat Mission and bubble flights Testing Status 16,629 42,435 RTPCR/CBNAAT/TrueNat tests conducted Rapid antigen test conducted in the city 41,42,540 2,18,028 Total tests done so far Tests per million n Containment zones as on date: 2724 n received in control room: 319 Calls n number of calls dispatched to Total ambulances: 1363 n number of calls refused : Nil Total Source: Delhi health bulletin | Data for Oct 21 The decision follows conversations between funds and the Indian government on longterm investment opportunities here. The announcement also comes on a day when RBI gover nor Shaktikanta Das said India is at the cusp of an economic recovery . Bajaj, however, did not reveal names of the funds which would be meeting the PM. The DEA secretary added that the government was looking at channelising domestic savings and domestic assets. “There is a lot of capital available in the country and now it’s increasing unlike 10 years ago, when money was not available. For instance, the government is in talks with regulators to tinker rules to allow Employees Provident Fund to put money in the infra sector,” the official said. He also revealed that the Union Cabinet will soon consider a new public sector enterprises policy, which will allow for the privatisation of the public Govt open to further stimulus for economy The Modi govt is open to further stimulus measures to boost the coronavirus-hit economy, Economic Affairs Secretary Tarun Bajaj said Raja Sahib, you (Amarinder) amended the laws of the Centre. Can the state change the laws of the Centre? No. You did a drama Your reaction smacks of total ignorance, Arvind Kejriwal. I can’t blame you as Delhi is not really a state. But I expected you to do homework... Arvind Kejriwal, Delhi CM Amarinder Singh, Punjab CM Kejriwal, Amarinder spar over state vs central farm laws Amarinder claims AAP reneged on its promises, Delhi CM hits back saying farmers don’t want ‘fake’ laws E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi/Chandigarh Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday locked horns with his Punjab counterpart Amarinder Singh over Punjab Assembly passing laws overriding the Central Acts on agricultural reforms. Amarinder dared the Centre to dismiss him if it thought his was an act of rebellion. He also suggested the AAP government to follow Punjab. Amarinder later accused the SAD and the AAP of going back on their words. He said the two parties had spoken in favour of the Bills inside the Punjab Assembly on Tuesday, and their representatives had gone along with him to the Governor. “But then they started saying different things outside. It was more than clear that these parties are not interested in securing the future of the far mers or protecting the state’s agriculture and economy said Amarinder. ,” Kejriwal hit back, saying farmers want the MSP and not “fake and false” laws of the Punjab CM. Questioning the powers of a state to counter laws passed by the Centre, Kejriwal said: “Can the state change the laws passed by the Centre? No. The laws that you passed are only theatrics… you made a fool of the people. Farmers want MSP not your false and fake laws”. The AAP has attacked Punjab’s Congress government on farm bills, accusing Amarinder of actually supporting the laws. The Punjab CM fired a volley of barbs in a series of tweets. “Your reaction smacks of total ignorance, Arvind Kejriwal. I can’t blame you as Delhi is not really a state. But I expected you to do homework before rushing to react to my remarks that were made in the interest of farmers, who I thought you might have some concern for,” Singh said in response to Kejriwal. CONTINUED ON P5 Akalis attack CM The Shiromani Akali Dal said that the state Bills have “thrown back Punjab farmers completely at Modi’s mercy”. “All this is being done under a deeprooted conspiracy between the state and the central governments to throw cold water on farmers,” said leader Bikram Majithia jailed for tweet, scribe Kanojia gets bail after two months N a m i ta B a j pa i @ Lucknow The Lucknow bench of the Allahabd High Court on Wednesday granted bail to journalist Prashant Kanojia, who was arrested by the UP police and had been in jail for the last two months over a social media post. Kanojia was arrested on August 18 following an FIR lodged against him at a police station in Lucknow. He was accused of promoting enmity among castes and communities. The journalist was earlier denied bail by a local court in Lucknow and had moved the High Court. The FIR against Kanojia was lodged by Shashank Shekhar Singh under sections 501 (printing or engraving matter known to be defamatory), 5051b (statements causing public mischief) and 500 (defamation) of Indian Penal Code and Sections 67 of the IT Act. Sources said the FIR accused the scribe of posting pictures of the President of India, PM and UP CM Yogi Adityanath accompanied by an objectionable text. He had allegedly made comments referring to a Dalit community . The case was rooted in a Facebook post by Sushil Tiwari, head of the self-styled ‘Hindu Army’, in which he posted a photograph of himself with the words ‘UPSC se Islamic Study turant hatakar Vedic Study joda jai, sabhi log ek saath avaaz uthayein’ (Let everyone demand that the UPSC remove Islamic Study and add Vedic Study’). Taking a cue from there, unidentified persons began circulating this image with a changed message. The police alleged that Kanojia tweeted this morphed image and registered a case against him. Brush with UP govt for 2nd time Kanojia was arrested last year as well for a tweet that the Uttar Pradesh police claimed had insulted Chief Minister Adityanath. He was later granted bail on the orders of the apex court in the case sector enterprises. “It is an open secret, but till it gets the stamp of the Cabinet we are not satisfied. It should happen very soon,” Bajaj said, adding monetisation of assets is a focus area of the government and that it is getting a lot of traction. He said the government has been able to privatise six airports, and now the Airports Authority of India and the Ministry of Civil Aviation are ready with the next tranche of six airports. e x press read Uddhav govt withdraws consent for CBI probe without its permission MUMBAI: The Maharashtra government has decided to withdraw the general consent clause for the Central Bureau of Investigation to probe any case in Maharashtra. It means that the CBI has to take permission from the Maharashtra government if it wants to probe any case in Maharashtra. Incidentally, the MVA government is at loggerhead with the Centre on various issues. Under the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act 1946 , the CBI enjoys special rights which allows it to go ahead in cases without seeking the consent from the States. The Maharashtra home department issued the notification withdrawing the general consent clause for CBI on the lines of West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh. “The Centre is continuously eroding and encroaching over the right of the states by taking over all sorts of sensitive probe. It happened in the Bhima Koreogan case as well as the Sushant case,” a senior MVA minister said. The new analysis reported in the State of Global Air this year says air pollution is now the largest risk factor for death Particulate air pollution exposure during pregnancy is linked to low birth weight and pre-term birth, which can trigger serious complications that may lead to death 1.16L infants died of air pollution in India last year among the top ten countries with the highest PM2.5 exThat pollution is a silent posures last year; all these killer is a well-established countries experienced infact. But it still comes as a crease in outdoor PM2.5 levbit of a shocker to know els between 2010 and 2019. that the toxic effects of outOver half of the infant door and household particu- deaths in India were linked late matter snuffed out the with outdoor PM2.5 and othlives of more than ers to use of solid 1,16,000 infants in fuels such as charIndia in their first coal, wood for cookmonth in 2019. ing. “Although This came to light there has been slow An infant’s in a new compre- health is critical and steady reduchensive study State to the future of tion in household , every society; of Global Air 2020 reliance on poorthis study (SoGA), analysing quality fuels, the air suggests air pollution’s glopollution from these especially high bal impact on fuels continues to risk for infants newborns. be a key factor in in S Asia Long-term expothe deaths of these sure to outdoor and Daniel Greenbaum, youngest infants,” Health Effects indoor air pollution said Daniel S. contributed to over Institute president Greenbaum, presi1.67 million annual dent of Health Efdeaths from stroke, heart at- fects Institute, a not-fortack, diabetes, lung cancer, profit organisation. chronic lung diseases and Use of solid fuels for cookneonatal diseases, in India ing presents a pattern of in 2019. For the youngest in- moderate success in India. fants, most deaths were re- Since 2010, over 50 million lated to complications from fewer people have been exlow birth weight and pre- posed to household air polterm birth. lution with the PM Ujjwala South Asian countries in- Yojana and other schemes cluding India, Bangladesh, helping to expand access to Pakistan and Nepal feature clean energy . Express News Service @ New Delhi
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