WEDNESDAY SKYMET PREDICTS HEALTHY, NORMAL MONSOON THIS YEAR 14 The private weather forecaster said on Tuesday this season’s rainfall will be 103% of 50-year average of 88 cm, with an error margin of 5% APRIL, 2021 106% OF LONG-PERIOD AVERAGE RAIN IN JUNE epaper.morningstandard.in facebook.com/TheMorningStandard “That is the healthy normal,” said G P Sharma, president (meteorology), Skymet Weather. He added there is 60% probability of a ‘normal’ monsoon and 15% probability of ‘above normal’ rainfall. On a monthly scale, June is likely to receive rainfall of 106% of the long-period average, while July may record 97%. August and September are expected to get 99% and 116% twitter.com/TheMornStandard MIZORAM LAWMAKERS AMONG REFUGEES In Mizoram, 14 lawmakers from Myanmar are kept under tight security A CAPITAL VIEW OF NEWS PAGE 8 NEW DELHI J8.00 PAGES 12 UDDHAV NOD TO 15-DAY JANATA CURFEW Seating capacity in public transport system In autos, only two passengers will be allowed to travel at a time. For four wheelers, 50% vehicle capacity will be permitted. Full seating occupancy will be allowed on buses. Strict restrictions for enforcement relate to movement of people but not on goods and commodities, the Maharashtra government said in its advisory Sec 144 to be in force in Maharashtra from Wed 8 pm; SOS to the PM to rush oxygen by air S U D H I R S U R YA W A N S H I @ Mumbai MAHARASHTRA Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday announced a 15-day long state-wide ‘janata curfew’. Prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code will come into effect on April 14 at 8 pm and will be in force till May 1, he said in an address to the people of Maharashtra. During the period, people will not be allowed to travel without a valid reason. All establishments, public places, activities, services shall remain closed. This, however, will not apply to those offering essential services. “Public transport will not be halted but will be restricted to those working in essential services like doctors, nurses and bankers. Industry is allowed to operate but workers should stay near the plant, he said. Thackeray added the state government will use the 15 days WHAT WILL BE OPEN Hospitals, diagnostic centres, clinics, vaccination, medical insurance offices, pharmacies, pharmaceutical companies and other medical and healthcare services. Groceries, vegetable shops, fruit vendors, dairies, bakeries and all type of food shops Public transport, including flights, trains, taxis, buses and auto rickshaws Export, import of all commodities E-commerce for the supply of essential services Petrol pumps, ATMs, all kinds of cargo services Offices can work with max 50% capacity All manufacturing sectors involved in essential services to work with full capacity to set up more healthcare facilities to deal with the crisis. The announcement came on a day when the state reported 60,212 positive cases. In his address, Thackeray also flagged the shortage in oxygen, Remdesivir and beds for Covid patients. He said Maharashtra urgently needs 50,00060,000 Remdesivir doses and 980 tonnes of oxygen. “If cases continue to rise, All restaurants and bars for indining; home delivery allowed but no takeaway or pick-up All establishments, public places, activities and services. Only people from essential services category then we will need around one lakh Remdesivir injections and even more oxygen. I spoke with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and he gave permission to bring oxygen from West Bengal and some northern states. However, it is difficult to bring oxygen from faraway places by road as it will consume a lot of time,” Thackeray said, adding that he has requested the Centre to rush life-saving oxygen and medicine using military . All registered auto drivers, construction labourers, domestic workers and hawkers will be given `1,500 each. “Besides, 3 kg wheat and 2 kg rice will be given to the poor for one month, free,” he added. Thackeray also raised the issue of GST compensation. “The state should get all financial help from the Centre during the pandemic,” he said. Door wide open for foreign jabs S U M I S U K A N YA D U T TA @ New Delhi A day after adding Russia’s Sputnik V to the list of approved vaccines, India populated it further by deciding to put emergency approvals for foreign-produced coronavirus jabs on the fast track that have been granted restricted use permission elsewhere. By doing to, it sought to take the sting out of the mounting criticism on sparse approvals by insisting on bridging trials, leading to vaccine shortage at a time when Covid infections in the country have surpassed the first peak of the pandemic India witnessed last year. The fig leaf of bridging trial continues to stay as the first 100 , EXPRESS READ FIR need not disclose all probe facts: SC New Delhi: An FIR is not an ‘encyclopedia’ which must disclose all the facts relating to offence and courts should not go into the merits of the allegations when investigation by the police is in progress, the Supreme Court said. While observing that police must be permitted to complete the probe, it said high courts must appreciate that speedy probe is the requirement in the criminal administration of justice. NGT cannot strike down laws: Top court New Delhi: The National Green Tribunal does not have the powers to examine validity of laws or strike them down, the Supreme Court said. A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde made the observation while hearing an appeal challenging Section 40 of the Biodiversity Act. The appeal was filed by Environment Support Group challenging Section 40 of the Biological Diversity Act, 2002. Poaching fear: Bodo candidates in C’garh Raipur: At least nine candidates of the Bodoland Peoples Front (BPF) have been shifted to a resort in the Congress-ruled Chhattisgarh after the Assam polls, a local Congress leader said on Tuesday. Confirming the development, a Congress leader said the group of nine candidates were brought to Raipur on Saturday late evening in a flight and lodged in a hotel before they were shifted to a resort. NATIONWIDE April 12 April 13 Fresh cases 1,68,912 1,61,736 Recoveries 91,719 76,481 904 879 Deaths Easy access The relaxation in rules makes it easier for Pfizer, Moderna, J&J and Novavax to apply for emergency use though their vaccine have not been tested on Indian population beneficiaries of such foreign vaccines shall be assessed for seven days for safety outcomes before they are rolled out for further immunisation programmes within the country . Authorities, however, main- tained that it may be several weeks before any of the foreign made vaccines are available for public use in India and will also depend on the interest shown by the manufacturers. The matter was discussed at length and decided upon at the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19 (NEGVAC), chaired by V K Paul, member (health), Niti Aayog, on Sunday last. “This decision will facilitate quicker access to such foreign vaccines by India and would encourage imports, including import of bulk drug material, optimal utilisation of domestic fill and finish capacity the Un,” ion health ministry said in a P7 statement. India ‘walked the talk’ during pandemic: Modi E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E @ New Delhi PRIME Minister Narendra Modi said the Covid-19 pandemic has presented an opportunity to reshape the world order and create systems to address the problems of today and tomorrow, and underlined that India has “walked the talk” in a humble way with limited resources to tackle the global crisis. Delivering the inaugural address of the Raisina Dialogue 2021 which is being held virtually for the first time , Modi said the edition of the event took a place at a “watershed moment in human history”. “A global pandemic has been ravaging the world for over a year. The last such global pandemic was a century ago. During this pandemic, in our humble way and within our limited resources, we in India have tried to walk the talk. We have tried to protect our own 1.3 billion citizens from the pandemic. At the same time, we have also tried to support pandemic response efforts of others,” he said on Tuesday ,. Asserting that mankind will not be able to defeat the pandemic unless “all of us, everywhere, regardless of the colour of our passports, come out of it”, Modi said it is important that a human-centric approach is put in place. He also called for the protection of the planet against climate change, saying that there is only one earth and that its citizens are trustees for future generations. During a panel discussion at the event, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar called for additional manufacturing capacities in countries like India. P7 PTI HC asks UP govt to consider complete lockdown The Allahabad High Court on Tuesday directed the UP government to look into the viability of complete lockdown for two-three weeks in the districts where Covid-19 has spread at alarming rate. It also asked the authorities to give priority to public health over elections (panchayat). Earlier, law minister Brijesh Pathak, in a letter to top officials, expressed anger over the lackadaisical attitude of authorities and crumbling health infrastructure ■ In terms of geographical risk, the plains of north India along with a few parts of the north-east region are likely to be at risk of being rain-deficient through the season, the Skymet said The India Meteorological Department, India’s official weather forecaster, is likely to release its monsoon forecast later this week April 12 Positive cases Recovery Deaths will have unrestricted movement No schools, colleges across the state Cinema halls, swimming pools, gyms, etc No shooting of movies or serials Places of worship to remain closed ■ DELHI COVID WATCH Active cases WHAT WILL NOT BE OPEN NORTH INDIA, N.E. MAY GET LESS SHOWERS April 13 11,491 13,468 7,665 7,972 38,095 43,510 72 81 6,175 6,852 Tests 92,397 1,02,460 Positivity rate 12.44 % 13.14 % Containment zones National capital is worst affected city in country With a record spike in cases and 81 deaths, Delhi is currently the worst affected city in the county. As per the health ministry, 879 deaths were reported in a span of 24 hours. Mumbai saw the highest single-day rise of 9,986 cases, followed by Bengaluru (6,387 cases), Chennai (2,105) and Kolkata (1,271 cases). Safety of kids: Kejriwal urges Centre to cancel CBSE Board exams S I D D H A N TA M I S H R A @ New Delhi WORRIED at the continued high trajectory of new Covid-19 cases in Delhi, which registered a record single-day spike of 13,468 cases on Tuesday, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal appealed to the Centre to cancel the CBSE examinations for Classes X and XII. Terming the situation as serious, Kejriwal said for the safety of lakhs of children, the board examinations should be cancelled. “The safety and security of children is very important to us. In the upcoming CBSE examinations, 6 lakh students will appear and 1 lakh teachers will be involved in the examination process. These examination centres have the full potential of becoming Covid hotspots,” he said. The Central Board of Secondary Education could explore other options like online exams or promoting students on the basis of internal assessments, the CM suggested. “Several countries have done it, some states in India are doing it, too.” Pointing out that the new wave was affecting the youth as well, Kejriwal urged people aged below 45 to observe utmost precaution. Preparing for the surge on a war footing, the AAP government has once again decided to attach hotels and banquet halls to nearby hospitals to increase the bed capacity Patients who . do not require intensive, roundthe-clock care can be placed in these facilities, the government stated. The CM once again appealed to the people not to occupy hospital beds if their symptoms are manageable at home. The government has also asked doctors to monitor each patient carefully and determine whether they need hospitalisation or not. “It’s not that the hospital or the government is shirking from their responsibility. We will provide such patients with an oximeter; our doctors will be calling them regularly to keep a check,” he said. Kejriwal also appealed that planned surgeries be delayed in view of the additional strain that the spiralling Covid cases have put on healthcare services and personnel. He requested recovered patients to come forward and start donating plasma to help those in need. Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal also held a meeting with top government officials to take stock of the situation in the naP4 tional capital. WATER DJB SAYS SUPPLY TO BE HIT FROM TODAY Raghav Chadha accuses Haryana for the crisis, saying it is not honouring the legal commitments to supply water to Delhi and is committing criminal negligence | P5 KASHI WAQF BOARD CONTESTS TRIAL COURT ORDER Petitioner says the Varanasi trial court had passed the order illegally as the matter was under consideration of the high court | P8 SILENT PROTEST West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday (pix) protested in the heart of Kolkata against the EC’s 24-hr campaign ban on her After her ban ended at 8 pm, she hit out at the EC at a rally, saying, “Efforts are on to stop me from campaigning at any cost.” Meanwhile, the EC barred BJP leader Rahul Sinha from campaigning for 48 hrs and sent notice to Bengal BJP chief Dilip Ghosh | P8 NEVER SAY DIE Dhaba reopens; owner who lost son to militants says not leaving Srinagar F AYA Z W A N I @ Srinagar Customers at Krishna Dhaba in Srinagar after it reopened on Tuesday | PTI NEARLY two months after his only son was shot dead by militants inside his eatery in Durga Nag area of Srinagar, Krishna Dhaba owner reopened his outlet on Tuesday . “I am not scared… I have to live and die here,” said Ramesh Kumar. “There is no fear. I do not feel any kind of threat as I have been living here and this is my home,” he added. A large number of tourists and locals flocked to the popu- lar eatery on its reopening. Ramesh’s brother said the local traders, shikarawalas and taxi drivers visited them and assured that they will always stand by them. Kumar’s son Akash Mehra, 22, was attacked by militants on February 17 and succumbed to injuries in a Srinagar hospital 11 days later. The family went to their native place in Jammu after Akash’s death and cremated him there. But they denied they had any plans to leave Kashmir. “If we had any such plans, we would not have returned and reopened the shop. We were born here, will live here and die here. There is no tension,” Kumar said. Militant outfit Muslim Janbaz Force, which was active in If we had any such plans (of leaving), we would not have returned and reopened the shop. We were born here, will live and die here. There is no tension —Ramesh Kumar, Krishna Dhaba owner 1990s, had claimed responsibility for the attack on Akash and warned that it won’t allow India to change the demography of Kashmir through domicile law. All three involved in the att a c k we r e a r r e s t e d t wo days later. Kumar, however, has forgiven his son’s killers. “I have lost my son. But I have no grudge against anybody. I would like the police to release these youths as they are answerable before the Almighty They, too, . are children of some parents.”
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