THURSDAY AHEAD OF 2021 ASSEMBLY WAR, LDF WINS LOCAL BODY BATTLE DECEMBER, 2020 The ruling CPM-led Left Democratic Front in Kerala on Wednesday appeared to make a clean sweep of the local body elections 17 epaper.morningstandard.in facebook.com/TheMorningStandard Befitting reply to Centre, says Vijayan twitter.com/TheMornStandard ■ SPREADING BASE OWAISI LOOKS FOR ALLIES IN UP AIMIM boss met a regional leader to discuss contours of a possible alliance PAGE 8 ■ A CAPITAL VIEW OF NEWS NEW DELHI J8.00 PAGES 12 SC panel in the works to seek stir’s solution @ New Delhi WITH the deadlock persisting on the farmers’ protest against three contentious farm sector laws, the Supreme Court on Wednesday indicated its intention to set up a committee of all stakeholders to open talks, adding the issue could soon snowball into a national one if not quickly resolved. “This is what we propose to do tentatively We will form . a committee to resolve this dispute,” the bench told solicitor general Tushar Mehta while hearing three petitions related to the protests. “This panel will comprise members from BKU or any other farmer association that are protesting, government representatives and other farmers groups,” Chief Justice of India SA Bobde said while issuing notice to the Centre on the three petitions. As per the order, eight farmer organisations have been included in the case: Bharatiya Kisan Union (Rakesh Tikait), BKU (Sidhupur), BKU (Rajewal), BKU (Lakhowal), Jamhoori Kisan Sabha, BKU (Dakaunda), BKU (Doaba) and Kul Hind Kisan Federation. Mehta told the bench headed by Chief Justice of India S A Bobde that the government is keen on engaging with the farmers, but it can happen only when the other side is open to discuss the laws, clause by clause. Instead, “they come with just one demand of taking back the law,” Mehta rued. At this, CJI Bobde observed, “Your negotiations have not worked apparently.” Mehta claimed the agitation had been taken over by vested interests. “Whenever they came to meet our ministers, they carried placards with ‘yes’ and ‘no’. Also, when the ministers spoke to them they turned around in their seats to show their back to the Central ministers,” he said. Delhi government counsel Rahul Mehra batted for the farmers saying they were compelled to protest in winter. “The Centre must do something to resolve their problems,” Mehra added. The case will be heard at P 5&7 length on Thursday . EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi Farmers warm themselves with a bonfire at Ghazipur; (inset) Baba Ram Singh who committed suicide | PARVEEN NEGI & PTI Wary unions want to wait and watch H A R P R E E T B A J W A @ Chandigarh PROTESTING farm unions on Wednesday reacted cautiously to the Supreme Court’s proposal to set up a committee to resolve the deadlock over the three contentious farm laws. While some said they will decide on the court’s suggestion only after receiving it in writing and taking legal advice, others claimed the new panel was meaningless since they had already rejected the Centre’s proposal to amend the three laws. Harinder Singh Lakhowal, General Secretary of BKU (La- khowal) and Omkar Singh, General Secretary of BKU (Rajewal) said, “After discussion among farmer leaders today it , was decided that once we get any notice from the court, we will take legal advice and decide as to what to do.” Forming a new committee at this stage may not work, according to Sukhdev Singh, Punjab General Secretary of Bhart i ya K i s a n U n i o n ( E k t a Ugrahan). “The government should have formed a committee of farmers and others before enacting the new agriculture laws,” he said. Swaraj India chief Yogendra Yadav, who is also a member Sankyukt Kisan Morcha, said the SC can decide the constitutionality of the farm laws but it is not for the judiciary to decide on the feasibility and desirability of these laws. “SC monitored negotiation would be a wrong path,” he noted. Meanwhile, a 65-year-old religious leader Baba Ram Singh shot himself dead at the Singhu border. He reportedly left behind a suicide note in Punjabi saying he took this extreme step as he could no longer see the struggles of the farmers. AGITATION FIGURED IN TALKS, SAYS RAAB New Delhi: Visiting British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab on Wednesday said he had discussed the ongoing farmers’ protests at Delhi’s borders with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar during their interaction. India, he said, had a “vibrant heritage of peaceful protests”, and the United Kingdom respects it | P7 NEW CJs FOR MADRAS, J&K AND GAUHATI HCs EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi KINDLING PATRIOTISM PM Narendra Modi lights a torch at National War Memorial in New Delhi on Wednesday to mark the 5Oth ‘Vijay Diwas’ | PTI DELHI COVID WATCH STATUS OF CASES Today 2734 32 -- Cumulative 5,88,586 10,147 13,261 1,547 RECOVERED DEATH ACTIVE CASES TOTAL +VE 6,11,994 PATIENT MANAGEMENT Total beds Occupied Vacant H OS P I TA L 18,804 3,716 15,088 CARE CENTRE 7,792 204 7,548 H E A LT H C E N T R E 562 49 513 *40 BEDS OF CCC ARE OCCUPIED BY PERSONS UNDER QUARANTINE INCLUDING TRAVELLERS WHO CAME BY VANDE BHARAT MISSION AND BUBBLE FLIGHTS 7,745 HOME ISOLATION TESTING STATUS 37,885 RTPCR/CBNAAT/ TrueNat tests conducted 41,157 Rapid antigen test conducted today 6,415 CONTAINMENT ZONES Source: Delhi health bulletin | December 16 Modi to be chief guest at AMU’s centenary event put in all efforts to make it a grand success. PRIME Minister Narendra His comments, as well as the Modi will be the chief guest at PM’s acceptance of the invite, Aligarh Muslim University’s are significant as AMU has centenary celebrations on De- been a hub of protests and the cember 22, said an official state- students have been quite vocal ment of the university on against a majority of the Modi Wednesday. The Prime Minis- government’s decisions. ter will attend the virtual funcThe AMU Students Union tion along with Union (AMUSU) adopted a Education Minister guarded silence on Ramesh Pokhriyal the invite extended by Nishank. the university authorAMU Vice-Chancelities to PM Modi and The AMU lor Professor Tariq his acceptance of it. community is Mansoor expressed AMUSU president thankful for his gratitude to the PM (Modi) acceptance Salman Imtiyaz told for accepting the in- to participate in the this newspaper that celebrations vite to participate in the union would make the celebrations mark- marking 100 years its stand clear via a of the university ing 100 years of the statement on university He also in. Thursday . Tariq Mansoor, formed that President The university was AMU vice-chancellor Ram Nath Kovind was on the boil after the expected to join other abrogation of Article online centenary functions of 370 in Jammu and Kashmir. the university . The anti-CAA stir was another The V-C appealed to the AMU flashpoint as the AMU campus community and all others con- was one of the nerve centres of cerned to keep the centenary the protests. Most recently the , programme above politics like university students have exRepublic Day, Independence tended support to the protestDay and Gandhi Jayanti, and ing farmers. N A M I TA BA J PA I @ Lucknow WHEN ELECTIONS TO THE KERALA ASSEMBLY ARE EXPECTED TO BE HELD List of trusted telecom sources to be out soon, blocking Chinese firms Fears matters could snowball; impleads 8 farmer unions; extensive hearing today EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE Apr-May 2021 The LDF was leading in 514 of the total of 941 grama panchayats, 3 corporations and 10 district panchayats. CM Pinarayi Vijayan, who drew flak following the gold smuggling case, said the results are the people’s reply to the central agencies trying to “wreck the state” THE Supreme Court collegium’s decision to shake-up the higher judiciary, as reported in these columns, including the transfers of chief justices of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, was formally uploaded on its website on Wednesday . In all, 14 judicial officers were part of the recommended shuffle: promotion of five judges as chief justices; transfer of four chief justices to various high courts; and transfer of five judges. Apart from the elevation of Justice Dr S Muralidhar as Chief Justice of Orissa High Court and Delhi High Court judge Hima Kohli as Chief Justice of Telangana High Court, the collegium approved proposals to promote Calcutta High Court judge Sanjib Banerjee as Chief Justice of Madras High Court, Allahabad High Court judge Pankaj Mithal as Chief Justice of Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand High Court judge Sudhanshu Dhulia as Gauhati High Court Chief Justice. The judges whose transfers have been approved include Justice Sanjay Yadav, presently serving as the acting Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court. His name has been recommended for transfer to the Allahabad High Court. Justice Rajesh Bindal, who is currently the acting Chief Justice of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court, has AFTER taking a slew of steps against Chinese mobile apps, India will soon come out with a list of ‘trusted sources’, only from whom can telecom equipment be purchased by service providers. Senior officials said the move is aimed at building indigenous capacity in the manufacturing of the telecom equipment, and cut down on the dependency on imports. The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Wednesday decided that a panel headed by the deputy national security advisor will prepare the ‘trusted sources’ list, which seeks to secure India’s communication network. The panel will also prepare a ‘negative list’ of companies, whose products will not be allowed in the country. The black list is likely to contain Chinese firms. The National Security Directive on Telecommunication Sector, cleared by the CCA, directs all service providers to mandatorily source equipment from “trusted sources”. However, it will not affect equipment that have already been deployed. “The CCS has approved the directive in line with the Next round of spectrum sale The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved a proposal for the auction of 2,251.25 megahertz of spectrum worth `3.92 lakh crore. The sale will be held in March 2021 | P10 partments, ministries, besides two from the industry and independent experts. The directive has provisions to qualify telecom gears made by domestic players in the trusted category while , those that meet the criteria of the DoT’s “preferential market access scheme” will be certified as India trusted sources. PROMOTIONS Name of judge Present HC HC where appointed as CJ Dr S Muralidhar Punjab & Haryana Orissa Hima Kohli Delhi Telangana Sanjib Banerjee Calcutta Madras Pankaj Mithal Allahabad Jammu & Kashmir Sudhanshu Dhulia Uttarakhand Gauhati TRANSFER OF CHIEF JUSTICES Name High Court from High Court to R S Chauhan Telangana Uttarakhand J K Maheshwari Andhra Pradesh Sikkim Mohammad Rafiq Orissa Madhya Pradesh A K Goswami Sikkim Andhra Pradesh Sudhanshu Dhulia Uttarakhand Gauhati TRANSFER OF JUDGES Name High Court from High Court to Sanjay Yadav Madhya Pradesh Allahabad Rajesh Bindal J&K Calcutta Vineet Kothar Madras Gujarat Joymalya Bagchi Calcutta Andhra Pradesh Satish Chandra Sharma Madhya Pradesh Karnataka been proposed for a transfer to the Calcutta High Court. The other transfers of judges are Madras High Court judge Vineet Kothari to the Gujarat High Court; Calcutta ‘PM had role in toppling Nath govt’ E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E @ Bhopal PRIME Minister Narendra Modi played an important role in the fall of Kamal Nath-led Congress government in Madhya Pradesh in March, BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya said on Wednesday . Vijayvargiya made the sensational disclosure while addressing the BJP’s Kisan Sammelan in Indore. “Aap kisi ko batana mat, maine aaj tak kisi ko nahi bataayee. Pahli baar is manch se bata raha hoon, ki Kamal Nathji ki sarkar girane mein yadi mahatvpoorna bhumika kisiki thee toh Narendra Modiji ki thee, Dharmendra Pradhanji ki nahi. (Don’t tell anyone, I haven’t told this to anyone till now. I’m making it public for the first time from this stage. If anyone played an important role in pulling down the Kamal Nath government, it was Narendra Modi and not Dharmendra Pradhan,” said needs of the national security , and accordingly the National Security Directive on Telecommunication Sector has been given the nod,” said Union law and Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. The panel will comprise members from relevant de- High Court judge Joymalya Bagchi to the Andhra Pradesh High Court; and Madhya Pradesh High Court judge Satish Chandra Sharma to the Karnataka High Court. EXPRESS READ $1.8 bn on vaccines in first phase: Report New Delhi: India will have to spend $1.4 billion to $1.8 billion in the first phase of a coronavirus vaccination programme even after getting support under the COVAX global vaccine-sharing scheme, according to estimates by the GAVI BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya (with saffron scarf) made the sensational remark at a Kisan Sammelan in Indore on Wednesday | PTI Vijayvargiya from the stage where Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan and MP home minister Narottam Mishra were also present. The Congress was quick to capitalise on the remark. “It’s crystal clear now that its PM Modi who pulls down constitutionally elected governments in unconstitutional manner. Congress has been saying it right since day one, but the BJP has been blaming the Congress’s internal tussle for the fall of the Kamal Nath government,” Congress spokesperson Narendra Saluja tweeted with the video of Vijayvargiya’s disclosure. In June, CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan had reportedly told BJP workers in Indore that it was the BJP’s central leadership which decided the fall of the Congress government. An audio clip of Chouhan’s address had gone viral. EXIT SUVENDU FIRES PARTING SHOT IN BENGAL As Trinamool rebel Suvendu Adhikari resigns from Bengal Assembly, several TMC leaders rally behind him | P8
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