THURSDAY DA FOR CENTRAL GOVT STAFF RAISED TO 28% FROM JULY 1 15 JULY, 2021 The Centre on has decided to restore dearness allowance for govt employees and dearness relief for pensioners epaper.morningstandard.in facebook.com/TheMorningStandard twitter.com/TheMornStandard IN THE NEWS T O D AY INDIA Landslide kills singer Dharamsala: Eight bodies were recovered in Boh valley following a landslide triggered by heavy rains which claimed 10 lives in all in Kangra district, police said on Wednesday. Punjabi singer Manmeet Singh, a resident of Amritsar, was among the victims. He had gone to Kakeri lake with his friends. His body was recovered from a place called Salli. Officials said three more are still reported missing after the landslide on Monday. Heavy rains have made things difficult for rescue teams. Arrested for spying New Delhi: A 34-year-old man, who used to supply vegetable at the Pokhran Army base camp, has been arrested for allegedly getting sensitive documents from an armyman for money and providing them to Pakistan’s ISI, officials said on Wednesday. Habeeb Khan, from Rajasthan’s Bikaner, was picked up Tuesday by a Delhi Police crime branch team from Pokhran based on intelligence inputs. He had been supplying vegetables to the Pokhran Army base camp for the past few years, the Delhi Police official said. Preliminary investigation has revealed that the suspect used to get sensitive documents from an Army official to ISI. INTERNATIONAL Moscow-Taliban talk Moscow: Moscow expects the Taliban to fulfill its pledge not to threaten Russia or its allies in Central Asia, the Kremlin envoy on Afghanistan said on Wednesday. Zamir Kabulov, who met a Taliban delegation in Moscow last week, voiced confidence that the Taliban would focus on securing their gains in Afghanistan and wouldn’t challenge countries of the region. “They offered guarantees on behalf of their leadership that Afghanistan will not be used against the interests of other countries,” Kabulov said in an interview. SC CRITIQUE Drop Sec 66-A cases, advises home ministry S A N A S H A K I L @ New Delhi THE Centre on Wednesday ordered states and Union territories to “immediately withdraw” all cases filed under the repealed Section 66-A of the Information Technology Act, nine days after the Supreme Court termed the unabated use of the scrapped section “a shocking state of affairs”. The government’s directive will help save the judiciary’s time as 745 cases registered under the defunct section are pending before various trial courts in 11 states. The Ministry of Home Affairs further ordered states and UTs to direct all police stations under their jurisdiction not to register cases under the section, which was scrapped by the SC on March 24, 2015. “It has been brought to our notice through an application in Hon’ble Supreme Court that FIRs are still being lodged by some police authorities under the struck down provision of Section 66-A of IT, Act, 2000. The Supreme Court has taken a very serious view in the matter,” the Ministry of Home Affairs said in the communication to states and UTs. In the letter to all the chief secretaries of states, administrators of UTs and police chiefs, the MHA emphasised the need to “sensitise the law enforcement agencies for the compliance of the order issued by the Supreme Court on 24.03.2015”. The home ministry also reminded the states that it had sent directives to the authorities on three previous occasions on January 11, January 14 and April 1 to sensitise the police authorities. NO ARREARS TO BE PAID THIS TIME Rate of DA/DR for January 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021 shall remain at 17% of basic pay/pension HIKE TO BENEFIT 1.14 CR STAFF AND PENSIONERS In view of Covid, the government had frozen three additional instalments of DA and DR, due from January 1, 2020, July 1, 2020 and January 1, 2021. Latest hike will benefit 48.34 lakh Central govt employees and 65.26 lakh pensioners, minister Anurag Thakur said A CAPITAL VIEW OF NEWS NEW DELHI COMBINED ANNUAL BURDEN ON THE EXCHEQUER DUE TO THE HIKE PAGES 12 Hard talk on unilateral LAC status quo change at meeting of ministers MANDAVIYA RAPS STATES CLAIMING VACCINE SHORTAGE EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi BARELY six days after taking over as the new Union health minister, Mansukh Mandaviya on Wednesday attacked states complaining of vaccine shortage, slamming them for ‘creating panic’ and charging that they had mismanaged their inoculation drive. Criticising them for making “useless statements”, he said all states had been infor med in advance about available supplies, yet they had failed to suitably stagger their vaccine rollout. He stoutly denied allegations of lack of jabs though several states claimed otherwise. “If the Centre is giving this information in advance and yet we see mismanagement and long queues, it is clear what the problem is and who is responsible for it,” Mandaviya acidly said. Sources in 10 states told this newspaper that they are facing vaccine shortage. Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, MP Ma, harashtra, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttarkahand and Bengal confirmed shortage of vaccines on Wednesday . Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, UP , Maharashtra, Delhi and West Bengal had to shut many of their vaccination centres for want of jabs since last week. In Haryana, Andhra, Karnataka, Gujarat and Chhattisgarh, there is a decline in average daily vaccinations since the record high of 86 lakh achieved on June 21. Mandaviya said 11.46 crore vaccine doses were available Although the rains calmed things down, there was trouble in store for commuters J8.00 Jaishankar tells China’s foreign minister Wang Yi full restoration of peace needed to build ties COLLISION COURSE MAJOR POINTS UNDER WATER EXTERNAL Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Wednesday met his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) foreign ministers’ meeting in Dushanbe, Tajikistan where they discussed outstanding issues on the troubled Line of Actual Control in Ladakh. “Concluded a one-hour bilateral meeting with State Councilor and FM Wang Yi of China on the sidelines of Dushanbe SCO Foreign Ministers Meeting. Discussions focused on the outstanding issues along the LAC in the Western Sector. Highlighted that unilateral change of status quo is not acceptable. Full restoration and maintenance of peace and tranquility in border areas is essential for development of our ties. Agreed on convening an early meeting of the Senior Military Commanders,” Jaishankar Crack the whip: Centre Amid concern over increase in the ‘R’ factor (reproduction rate) of the coronavirus in view of the blatant violation of Covid norms, the Centre asked states to take action against officials responsible for the situation | P7 SC notice to UP The SC on Wednesday took suo motu cognisance of Uttar Pradesh allowing the annual Kanwar Yatra amid fears of a third Covid wave. A bench of Justice R F Nariman issued notice and slated the next hearing for Friday | P7 to the states in June and the quantum was increased to 13.5 crore in July The Centre, . he said, had informed all states on June 19 about the exact number of doses that would be available to them in July On June 27 and July 13, . they were informed about the availability of vaccines every day for the first and second fortnight of July. “So the states know when and in what quantity they will get the doses,” he said. July 13 34,10,974 doses July 14 32,10,451 doses JAB-O-METER TAKE YOUR SHOT TOTAL DOSES: 39,10,53,156 NATIONWIDE JULY 13 Fresh cases 32,906 38,792 Recoveries Deaths 49,007 41,000 2,020 624 50 Barfkhana to Sabzi Mandi Azadpur underpass Punjabi Bagh near Road No 57 Kashmere Gate Mukherjee Nagar Timarpur Market to Mall Road Nangloi to Mundka carriageway DELHI JULY 14 Total No. of waterlogging complaints received by PWD 14 Wazirabad, Khyberpass Chandini Chowk redeveloped road AIIMS Flyover Bhagwandas Road to Mathura Road crossing Parts of North, North East, Shahdhra, West and Outer Delhi saw heavy rainfall and waterlogging 8-14 No of buses that broke down due to the shower A waterlogged underpass after heavy rain at Azadpur in New Delhi on Wednesday | PTI WATER EVERYWHERE IN DELHI’S DATE WITH RAINS THE Public Works Department (PWD) appears to have been bothered by waterlogging only on the heritage Minto Bridge this year. Other major and busy arterial routes, including the newly redevloped 1.3km stretch of Chandi Chowk road, seem to have been left to the mercy of rains. As a result, the city on Wednesday saw more than 50 busy routes getting heavily waterlogged for a second consequtive day , despite the PWD’s claims of successful desilting before the onset of monsoon. As per senior officials, the PWD completes inspections and submits a report by the end of June, before the beginning of monsoon. Last month, the PWD cheif had asked some of the chief engineers and executive engineers to complete this, saying that monsoon will arrive soon. said in a series of tweets. The two leaders had earlier met in September last year on the sidelines of another SCO meet in Moscow where they had agreed on a five-point mechanism to ensure disen- gagement and de-escalation along the LAC. “The external affairs minister emphasized the need to follow through on the agreement reached then (in Moscow) and complete the disengagement, resolving the re- Court fines & reprimands cops for messing up riot case probe EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi DELHI Police has been fined `25,000 by a Delhi court for mishandling a case linked to the riots of February 2020. , Additional sessions judge Vinod Yadav pulled up Delhi Police and observed that the SHO of Bhajanpura and other supervising officers failed miserably in their statutory duties. He said that riot victim Mohammed Nasir can approach a court of law for action against Delhi Police. Nasir, who was shot in the eye during the riots, had complained against six people in his locality, identifying each one by name. One of the accused is Naresh Gaur, a former BJP MLA. When the police clubbed his complaint with a completely unrelated case, he approached the Metropolitan Magistrate. The lower court upheld his petition and demanded the police file a FIR in the case, upon which the police challenged the order in the sessions court. Observing that case diaries have not been maintained in accordance with the law, the court said that when two separate complaints disclosing cognisable offences are filed by two different complainants, there are no provisions under which they can be clubbed. “If the grievance of the respondent is analysed, then it would be clearly apparent that the respondent had set out a counter version and the same was not covered within the principle of sameness,” reads the order. Questioning how the police gave a clean chit to the accused without any investigation, the judge said: “After looking at the case, it is evident that the police was working to save the accused”. The court also told the Delhi Police Commissioner that investigations in such cases be conducted in a proper manner. Usually, Delhi experiences waterlogging during heavy spells of rain. But this year, normal showers have caused waterlogging. The traffic police recieved about 14 complaints between 11.52 am to 2.42 pm on Wednesday. Officials said the rain was heavy in parts of north and northeast Delhi, outer and outer north and west Delhi. South Delhi, too, saw traffic snarls for hours. CONTINUED ON PAGE 4 COURT CALL DRONE Supreme Court says it will examine how far constitutional courts can venture into issues which fall within the domain of the executive in relation to management of the Covid-19 pandemic | P7 Total No of calls received by Traffic Police between 11.52 am and 2.42 pm Pul Prahaladpur G AYAT H R I M A N I @ New Delhi External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar (R) and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi before the meeting in Tajikistan’s Dushanbe on Wednesday | TWITTER maining issues along the LAC in Eastern Ladakh at the earliest,” a statement from the ministry stated. Jaishankar pointed out that the successful disengagement in Pangong Lake earlier this year had created conditions for resolving the remaining issues. “It was expected that the Chinese side would work with us towards this objective. He however noted that the situation in remaining areas is still unresolved,” it added. Going forward, the two leaders agreed that in the next meeting of the military commanders, the two sides should discuss all the remaining issues and seek a mutually acceptable solution. “There was also an understanding that both sides will continue to ensure stability on the ground and neither side will take any unilateral action that could increase tension,” the foreign ministry’s statement said. Army personnel fire at aerial intruder and force it to retreat. Sixth time in two weeks that this kind of attack has been thwarted in this area | P8 UNDER THE SCANNER SEEN AGAIN IN J&K ROY OF HOPE Colourful creations of colour-blind painter winning hearts & laurels R A J E S H K U M A R T H A K U R @ Patna COLOUR-BLINDNESS has not deterred him from creating a colourful world of Madhubani paintings. He has come out with many pieces, including drawing themes from the speeches of PM Narendra Modi on the importance of vaccination in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic. Kundan Kumar Roy, 35, is an MBA and a gifted sculptor as well. Congenitally colour-blind, he has created quite a sensation through his Madhubani paintings based on the PM’s speeches, mainly on the impor, tance of face masks and vaccination. The PM’s first address to the nation on the eve of oneday ‘Janata Curfew’ last year became Roy’s leitmotiv. “I drew the map of India in the palm of the Prime Minister in the Madhubani painting with the help of my sister An- kita, who filled colours in the painting,” said Roy His second . painting in support of the PM’s message was on protocols with a message: ‘Stay Home. Be Safe. Support lockdown.’ Roy credits his late mother for inspiring him. “She wanted me to explore the world of colours — a challenge for me,” he said. He is supported by his brother Chandan Kumar, sister Ankita and wife Sujata in filling colours on the paintings. Roy’s three recent paintings on vaccination have won appreciation from the state health department. Additional Chief Secretary (Health) Pratyay Amrit has made one of the paintings on vaccination the DP as his WhatsApp status. The painting has also been tweeted by a large number of people. Roy wants to gift the PM a set of his paintings on the themes of his speeches in the fight against Covid-19. His motivational painting on Bihar Assembly polls was used as a promotional by Election Commission. He also has a a series of paintings on the folksongs of Bihar’s nightingale Sharda Sinha, besides depicting other themes related to environment and social causes. Youth president of ‘National Human Welfare Council’ and brand ambassador of ‘My Planet My Need’, Roy has won several state and national-level awards.
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