FRIDAY Usain Bolt’s 9.58-second record in 100-metres was again bettered this year, with a 23-yearold clocking 9.15 secs in a buffalo race 12 FEBRUARY, 2021 epaper.morningstandard.in facebook.com/TheMorningStandard Vishwanath managed it after failing twice SOCIAL MEDIA CYBER COURSE FOR STUDENTS PAGE 7 VIJITH HEGDE RENJALA 3RD TRY twitter.com/TheMornStandard Education ministry tells institutes to design syllabi at UG and PG levels 9.15-SECOND DASH BREAKS USAIN BOLT’S RECORD! NISHANT SHETTY, SRINIVAS GOWDA BETTERED A CAPITAL VIEW OF NEWS NEW DELHI J8.00 Kambala jockey Vishwanath Devadiga (23) sprinted through a slushy track in Udupi, taking 0.36 seconds less than last year’s champion Nishant Shetty, whose dash had clocked 9.51 seconds. Earlier, Srinivas Gowda’s 9.55-second sprint had brought him social media fame, resulting in a call for nationals trial PAGES 12 Govt talks tough, says Twitter can’t overstep Indian law E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi MAKING A NEW BEGINNING Clockwise from left: Indian and Chinese officers interact on Thursday; and armoured vehicles start moving as part of disengagement in the Pangong Tso | PTI Full Pangong pullback expected in two weeks Rajnath says vacated space on the banks of the lake will be a no-go zone for both sides; disengagement elsewhere later M AYA N K S I N G H @ New Delhi A day after the Sino-Indian disengagement began from standoff positions in Eastern Ladakh, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday confirmed the pull back in a “phased, coordinated and verified manner” in Parliament, and gave a sense of how the whole process is expected to unspool. While the Chinese Army will move back to the east of Finger 8, the Indian Army will fall back to Dhan Singh Thapa post, short of Finger 3 in the North bank area of the Pangong Lake. A similar disengagement began on the South Bank of the lake on Wednesday Full disen. gagement on both sides of the lake is expected in 10-15 days, a senior officer said. After the drawdown from Finger 4, Rajnath said, unless a decision is taken otherwise, the area in between will be a no-go zone for both sides. “It has also been agreed to have a temporary moratorium on military activities by both sides in the North Bank, including patrolling to the traditional areas. Patrolling will be resumed only when both sides reach an agreement in diplomatic and military talks that would be held subsequently .” A similar action would be taken in the South Bank area by both sides, he said. Given the sensitivities involved, local commanders of both sides are meeting twice a day to iron out the wrinkles. India is wary as a similar disen, gagement in the past was dishonoured by the Chinese side earlier in the hot spring area, although they had withdrawn from the Galwan Valley Within . 48 hours after this phase is over, Corps Commanders of both sides will meet to work on other positions of the stand-off. CHALLAN MISUSE: NO KHAKI FOR CIVIL DEFENCE? G AYAT H R I M A N I @ New Delhi THE Delhi Police wants khaki uniform of civil defence volunteers changed, citing its misuse. The force plans to formally write to the AAP government complaining of incidents involving these volunteers issuing Covid challans while posing as police personnel. Incidentally three civil de, fence volunteers were arrested on Thursday. Three FIRs were lodged in this connection in northeast, New Delhi and west district. T he police on Thursday also appealed to the people to verify the identity of police personnel before accepting any challan. It said these volunteers have no power to issue Covid challans such as the one for not wearing masks. “These volunteers are violating rules and are misusing the khaki uniform by posing as Delhi Police personnel. Many cases of these volunteers faking as police personnel have come up in the past few months. Sometimes, even Delhi Police personnel get confused due to the colour of the uniform,” said a senior Delhi Police of- ficer. “We’ll soon write to the Delhi government urging it to change the colour of the uniforms of these volunteers.” Police sources said at least three FIRs have been lodged and four volunteers arrested during the peak Covid time for issuing fake challans. “Since these volunteers are mistaken as police personnel, their misconduct is attributed to the police,” said a police officer. East District Magistrate AK Mishra has said even when these volunteers are accompanied by SDM officials, they are not authorized to issue Covid challans. The police recently arrested three such volunteers who targeted couples in Talkatora Garden by issuing challans for not wearing a mask and took payment via Paytm, sharing the amount. The accused had even issued a fake challan receipt. Around 10,000 civil defence volunteers were deployed on Covid duty at various departments and quarantine centres, containment zones and other areas. These volunteers are paid `730 per day . These volunteers are violating rules and misusing the khaki uniform... We’ll soon write to the Delhi government urging it to change the colour of the uniforms — Delhi Police STRUCTURES BUILT AFTER APRIL 2020 TO BE REMOVED On the heights India occupied in Rechen La and Razang La on the Kailash Ranges and fortified its positions, Rajnath said structures raised by both sides will be removed. “These are mutual and reciprocal steps and any structures that had been built by both sides since April 2020 in both North and South Bank area will be removed and the landforms will be restored.” He said nothing has been conceded as part of the agreements. A day after attacking microblogging platform Twitter for noncompliance, the Centre on Thursd ay w a r n e d s o c i a l m e d i a platforms of strict action if they fail to crackdown on inflammatory content. Speaking in the Rajya Sabha, Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the Centre is committed to freedom of media, but it was equally concerned about the security and law Reaching out to the Matuas, Union Home Minister Amit Shah said the process of granting citizenship to refugees will begin once the COVID vaccination ends PAGE 8 We respect social media, it has empowered the common people. Social media has a big role in Digital India programme. However, if social media is misused, action will be taken Ravi Shankar Prasad, Information Technology Minister ter to block over 1,100 handles and posts that allegedly spread misinformation about the farmer protest. These included accounts of journalists, activists, and politicians. Twitter partially complied, saying the demands were inconsistent with the Indian law. Meanwhile, Twitter’s desi competitor Koo came under attack from a French expert who claimed it was exposing user data. The app developer quickly rebutted the charge and said user data was P10 very much safe. Be ready to pay more for air travel as the cap on lower and upper limits of domestic airfares have been raised by 10% to 30% BAND 1 Up to 40 mins flight | Up from `2K-6K`2.2K-7.8K BAND 2 40-60 mins flight | Up from `2.5K-7.5K`2.8K-9.8K BAND 3 60-90 mins flight | Up from `3K-9K`3.3K-11.7K BAND 4 90-120 mins flight | Up from `3.5K-10K`3.9K-13K BAND 5 120-150 mins flight | Up from `4.5K-13K`5K-16.9K BAND 6 150-180 mins flight | Up from `5.5K-15.7K`6.1K-20.4K BAND 7 180-210 mins flight | Up from `6.5K-18.6K`7.2K-24.2K IAMAI adopts ‘toolkit’ for self-regulation ACT WILL BE BROUGHT AFTER VACCINATION had come down heavily on Twitter, saying social media platforms should not have different yardsticks to confront developments at, say, Capitol Hill and the Red Fort. After the Republic Day violence, the Centre had asked Twit- Domestic flights just became costlier EXPRESS READ CAA and order in the country Naming . Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp, and LinkedIn, Prasad said: “We respect your good work. You bring FDI, but you have to respect the laws of the country .” On Wednesday, the ministry New Delhi: The Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) adopted the self-regulation toolkit of content that focuses on grievance redressal and setting up of complaints committees. Recently, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar had said guidelines for streaming regulation was almost ready. Rescue operation near Raini village was temporarily halted for two hours due to a surge in water levels of Rishiganga | SHEKHAR YADAV Gushing sludge and water stop tunnel floor boring at Tapovan V I N E E T U PA D H YAY @ Tapovan (Uttarakhand) WITH a change in strategy failing to deliver, attempts to save 37 workers trapped in the Tapovan hydropower plant tunnel since Sunday following flash floods appeared to be a long shot, as no official or agency could say how much longer it would take to reach them. Ravinath Raman, commissioner of Garhwal division of Uttarakhand said, “At this point of time, no one can tell how much time the operation will take. This is a developing situation and unstable landscape. The response strategy keeps changing according to the developing situation.” Also, a meeting in Delhi discussed reports of a lake formation in Rishiganga in the higher reaches. “We will act as per instructions.” The changed strategy to drill into the floor of the tunnel to reach a silt filtration tunnel underneath in the hope that the men were perhaps stuck there, had to be suspended as sludge and water gushed in when they reached a depth of six metres. The officials from NTPC Limited said that the drilling was stopped fearing damages to the ground fearing that the excavator machines will not be able to move. After resumption, the excavators began clearing off sludge from the tunnel to make way for rescue team to save the trapped men. When asked if there is any hope for survival of the trapped men, Ujjwal Bhattacharya, director projects, NTPC Limited, did not give a direct answer. “My priority is to rescue the men and we should all pray for them.” “We have started to look for two places for bodies at the site as the muck has receded a bit.” Earlier in the day, there was high drama as water levels of the Rishiganga and the Dhauliganga suddenly rose, forcing rescuers to suspend operations for two hours. Chamoli DM Swati Bhadauria, said the administration has started last rites of the bodies which have crossed 72-hour time limit after being recovered. Meanwhile,the family and relatives were fearing the worst. “I am losing hope now. My family is already broken. These delays are now taking a toll,” said Kailash P7 Yadav from Bihar’s Siwan. New Rahul take on family planning slogan to bug BJP M A N I S H A N A N D @ New Delhi FORMER Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Thursday sought to spin a famous family planning slogan into a sharp one-liner to attack the government, calling it a Hum Do Hamare Do Sarkar (we two, ours two government), saying the country was run by just four persons. Without naming anyone, he claimed the conten- tious farm laws are meant to benefit big corporate entities alone. The BJP hit back, saying he was possibly referring to his dynasty’s Didi-Jija and two (sister, brother-inlaw and family). Rahul had sought to link his charge of crony capitalism against the current dispensation with the ongoing farm agitation while participating in the debate on the Budget in the Lok Sabha. Rebutting the prime minister’s charge that the Opposition was not specifying what was wrong with the farm laws, he claimed the first one would destroy the mandis as anyone could purchase any amount of foodgrains; the second would result in hoarding; and the third would deprive the farmers of judicial remedy. “The farm laws will destroy the rural economy,” he said amid protests from NDA, who asked him to speak on the Budget. Though Rahul said he was laying the foundation for Budget debate, he abruptly wound up, calling for a “two-minute silence for farmers who died since the start of the agitation”. WORRY Covid cases on upswing after local trains resume in Mumbai 12,000 ACTIVE PATIENTS IN MMR The cumulative number of cases in Maharashtra stands at 20.52 lakh and the recovery rate has stabilised at 95.7 per cent. 2,421 have patients recovered on Wednesday bringing the number of active patients to 35,000, of which 12,000 are in the MMR E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Mumbai A sudden spike in Covid cases in Mumbai and its metropolitan region have led to many wondering whether it was linked to the resumption of the local train services. After a string of days with relatively low numbers of new cases and deaths, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR)— which comprises Mumbai city and its satellite towns— has witnessed a surge in number of cases. The MMR reported 1,075 new Covid cases on Wednesday— a 55 per cent surge from 693 cases recorded on Tuesday It was nearly after . a month that the metropolis reported more than 500 cases. In Mumbai city, which was reporting 400-450 cases on average in the first week of February the , number increased to 558 on Wednesday. There were 15,688 tests conducted in the city with a Test Positivity Rate (TPR) of 3.5 per cent. On Tuesday, the TPR was 2.6 per cent. Local authorities, however, claimed that it is not due to the reopening of local trains for all, but because of increased testing at arrival points in the city . “The cases have increased but it cannot be attributed to local trains. We have increased the number of testing at airports and other destinations as a result of which the number of cases may increase,” said BMC officials.
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