17072020-TTB-01.qxd 16-07-2020 23:54 Page 1 13 chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | jammu | srinagar | vol.140 no.197 | 12 pages | ~5.00 | regd.no.chd/0006/2018-2020 established in 1881 US MULLS TRAVEL BAN ON CPC MEMBERS WORLD /thetribunechd DOT WITHDRAWS ~2.3 LAKH CRORE DEMAND ARCHER OUT OF 2ND TEST FOR BREAKING PROTOCOL SPORT NOTICES ON GAIL, OIL BUSINESS /thetribunechd www.tribuneindia.com friday, july 17,2020 Pilot,18 rebels move HC against Pak renders Jadhav meet meaningless MEA says consular access to former Naval officer was not credible Speaker’s notice; hearing today Tribune News Service Cong reiterates doors open for ex-Dy CM; asks Gehlot to ‘soften up’ Tribune News Service New Delhi, July 16 The Rajasthan Congress crisis today took a legal turn with 18 rebel MLAs led by Sachin Pilot moving the state High Court, which will on Friday hear their petitions challenging the disqualification notices issued to them by Assembly Speaker CP Joshi. The dissident camp, represented in the HC by ace lawyers Harish Salve and Mukul Rohatgi, earlier this morning sought an urgent hearing on the matter challenging the constitutional validity of the notices issued under the anti-defection law. The HC agreed to list the issue before a Division Bench at 7.30 pm today, but later deferred the same until 1 pm on Friday. The Pilot group has argued that the Speaker cannot Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot on Thursday leaves a Jaipur hotel where Congress leaders and legislators are putting up. PTI Sachin loyalists shifted to another Manesar hotel invoke the anti-defection law provisions in the case as the MLAs had neither defected nor indulged in anti-party activities and hence they had not “voluntarily given up the party membership” as main- tained by the Congress. The rebels’ plea is that absence from the two CLP meetings Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot had called did not constitute defiance of the party whip and a whip was issued only for proceedings on the floor of the House and not otherwise. Their petitions say the Speaker showed “undue haste” in issuing disqualification notices under the Tenth Schedule and the notices were “bad in law”. The Congress is being represented in the matter by lawyer Abhishek Singhvi, with political observers citing the choice of legal representatives of the two sides as evidence enough of which way the matters were moving. The Congress, however, kept the doors ajar for Pilot even today, with top sources saying the leadership had asked CM Gehlot to go soft on the rebel leader. Gehlot had yesterday publicly lashed out at Pilot, accusing him of “indulging in horse-trading of MLAs and conspiring to topple the Congress government in the state”. continued on Page 10 Limited flights: Air bubble with France, US New Delhi, July 16 The government today said international flights were set to resume under “bilateral air bubbles” with other countries, with Air France agreeing to operate 28 flights between Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Paris from July 18 to August 1, and US’ United Airlines 18 flights between July 17 and 31. “These operations, however, are being allowed with certain conditions as many countries, including India, are imposing entry restrictions even now in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic,” it said. Minister for Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri, addressing mediapersons, said: “We DECODING AIR CORRIDOR ■ A bilateral air bubble is a travel corridor between 2 countries ■ Flights operate non-stop between pre-agreed destinations CARRIER FLIGHTS PERIOD ■ Only a fixed number of flights Air France 28 July 18-Aug 1 as agreed upon are allowed United Airlines 18 July 17-31 ■ Duration of flight operations is limited to the agreement Talks with ■ Nations in arrangement have Germany, UK in to allow each other’s airlines advanced stage ■ Covid protocol is followed as per Hardeep Singh Puri, existing rules of both nations CIVIL AVIATION MINISTER ❝ A-I ALLOWS TRANSFER OF CANCELLED FLIGHT TICKETS are at very advanced stages of negotiation with three countries and it is a work in progress. For example, Air France will be operating 28 flights between Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Paris from July 18 to August 1, while United Airlines of the US will be flying 18 flights between July 17 and 31. But these are interim arrangements.” Puri said talks on air bubble were in advanced stages of negotiation with Germany and the UK. Earlier, the Ministry of Home Affairs had said international passenger flight services would resume in a phased manner during “Unlock 2.0”. Puri said over 6,80,000 Indians stranded abroad had so far been brought home under the Vande Bharat Mission. He added the cap on domestic airfare amid the pandemic was likely to be extended after August 24 due to low demand. — TNS New Delhi, July 16 Officials of the Indian High Commission in Islamabad, who were offered consular access to Kulbhushan Jadhav today, protested against Pakistan reneging on earlier assurances and left the venue after lodging a protest. During backchannel talks on access to Jadhav that began on Monday, Pakistani diplomats had assured the Indian interlocutors that no one would be posted in Jadhav’s vicinity during the meeting with Indian offi- Tribune News Service Tribune News Service Bathinda, July16 The lockdown has forced many parents in Punjab to get the names of their wards struck off from playschools. The owner of a kindergarten says one-fourth of the students have opted out. “Not all parents are averse to online learning. Many have been taking a keen interest in virtual classes and are helping their kids learn through video and text messages,” he claims. But Shefali, whose four-yearold son was promoted to nursery this year, calls the concept a farce. “Learning via cellphone, computer or tablet isn’t healthy at such a tender age. The job becomes harder if both parents are working,” she says. Health experts do not advise online studies for pre-nursery and nursery students. They have received a number of cases of eye strain due to excessive use of electronic gadgets, they say. Prof NK Gosian, an education expert, says the concept of online classes is detrimental for the physical and mental wellbeing of students, especially those in kindergarten. “Excess screen time can harm the brain too. Also, the coronavirus has deprived students of outdoor activities,” he maintains. continued on Page 10 New Delhi, July 16 Even as Covid cases today reached 9.68 lakh in the highest single-day surge of 32,695, active infections dropped to one third of the total burden in signs of improved recoveries. Of 9,68,876 total cases, 34.18 per cent (3,31,146) are currently on disease management. The rest have been cured. The death toll reached 24,915, with 606 patients succumbing to the disease in the past 24 hours. “Containment, tracking and treatment have contributed to a steady decline in the number of active cases. The actual caseload of Covid-19 has remained limit- COVID-19CASES INDIA COUNT RECOVERED 6,12,814 FRESH FATALITIES 606 TOTAL DEATHS 24,915 9,68,876 TOTAL RECOVERED DEATHS WORLD 1,37,95,615 81,93,788 5,88,977 ‘TRIALS STEP TOWARDS SELF-RELIANT INDIA’ The Department of Biotechnology said on Thursday that Zydus Cadila’s move to begin human trials of its indigenously developed Covid vaccine was a milestone for an ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’. “We hope that the vaccine will show positive outcome,” said a DBT official. TRIPT BAJWA’S WIFE, SON TEST +VE ■ The retired Navy officer was sentenced to death by a Pak military court for “espionage and terrorism” in April 2017 following which India approached the ICJ ■ The ICJ ruled in July last year that Pak must undertake an “effective review” of conviction and must grant consular access to India without any further delay cials. There would also be no recording of the meeting. However, Indian consular officials not only found Pakistani officials in close proximity to Jadhav, but also detected a camera for recording the conversation. Jadhav too was under visible stress and indicated that to the consular officials. “The arrangements did not permit a free conversation between them… in the light of these circumstances, we came to the conclusion that Pullback move complex, won’t allow status quo change: India Tribune News Service New Delhi, July 16 The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and Army in separate statements today said the disengagement of Indian and Chinese militaries from the Line of Actual Control (LAC) was a “complex process”, hinting at a long-drawn exercise. The MEA has once again said: “We are fully committed to observing and respecting the LAC. Any unilateral attempt to change the status quo along the LAC is not acceptable.” These statements emerged after the meeting last evening of the China Study Group (CSG) in New Delhi that followed the 15-hour marathon meeting of the Lt Gen-level commanders that ended at 2 am on Tuesday. “Both sides have agreed at specific points to redeploy towards their regular posts on their respective sides of the LAC. These are mutually agreed reciprocal actions to be Playschoolshit,parents With highest single-day surge wary of online classes of 32,695, cases near 1 million SukhmeetBhasin INDIAN NATIONAL ON DEATH ROW ed and manageable in the country due to proactive measures of containment, including house-to-house survey, perimeter control activities, timely contact tracing, surveillance of containment zones, aggressive testing, timely diagnosis, and effective clinical management of the moderate and severe cases,” the Health Ministry said. After crossing the 50 per cent mark in the recovery rate in mid-June, India has made steady improvements to reach the cure rate of 63.25 per cent. Simultaneously, there has been a steady dip in the active cases from around 45 per cent in mid-June to 34.18 per cent as of now. this consular access was neither meaningful nor credible. After lodging a protest, the officers left the venue,” said MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava. Srivastava recalled that over the past year, India has requested Pakistan more than 12 times to provide unimpeded, unhindered and unconditional consular access to Jadhav, who has been in Pakistani custody since 2016. “It is clear that Pakistan’s approach to this matter continues to be obstructive and insincere,” he alleged. No postal ballot for Bihar voters above65 NEW DELHI: The Election Com- mission on Thursday decided not to extend postal ballot facility to voters above 65 years of age in the Bihar Assembly elections due to logistical constraints. It said specially abled voters (above 80) and quarantined Covid patients could vote by postal ballot. — TNS Row over Dhankar’s meeting with VCs FIRM ON LAC STAND: MEA INTRICATE PROCESS: ARMY ❝ Mutual redeployment committed tosides remain ❝ The two objective of should not be misrepresented. There is absolutely no complete disengagement. change with respect to This process is intricate and India’s position on the LAC. requires constant verification Anurag Srivastava, MEA SPOKESPERSON Col Aman Anand, ARMY SPOKESPERSON KOLKATA: The education system in West Bengal is “politicaly caged”, Governor Jagdeep Dhankar said on Thursday, a day after most VCs skipped a meeting called by him. The Education Department said Dhankar had no authority to call the meet. — PTI Alliance Air resumes Delhi-Kullu flight taken by both sides. This mutual redeployment should not be misrepresented. There is absolutely no change with respect to India’s position on the LAC,” said MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava. The disengagement process currently underway on both sides in eastern Ladakh was specifically aimed at addressing face-off situations and close-up deployments of troops, said the MEA. “The two sides remain committed to the objective of complete disengagement and full restoration of peace and tranquillity in the IndiaChina border areas.” The two sides will continue their diplomatic and military engagements to achieve continued on Page 10 Punjab caps Covid charges at pvt clinics Fake students given HP scholarship: CBIprobe Chandigarh, July 16 The Punjab Government today fixed treatment charges for private hospitals and medical colleges treating Covid patients. For isolation beds, supportive care and oxygen, the per day charges have been fixed at Rs 10,000 for private medical colleges, hospitals and healthcare providers under the National Accreditation Board; Rs 9,000 for accredited hospitals/medical colleges without PG course; and Rs 8,000 for hospitals not under the National Accreditation Board. In case of severe symptoms, the charges for the three categories have been fixed at Rs 15,000, Rs 14,000 and Rs 13,000, respectively, and for critical patients at Rs 18,000, Rs 16,500 and Rs 15,000. INSIDE Bhanu P Lohumi Tribune News Service Shimla, July 16 The CBI investigation into the Rs 250 crore scholarship scam in Himachal Pradesh has found that the lists of students submitted by the KC Group of Institutions, Una, were fake and there were no real beneficiaries from Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe and Backward Class communities. The startling fact surfaced following the CBI team’s visit to Bharmaur, Pangi, Chamba, Kangra, Banjar and Manali, wherein they found that nearly 1,000 students listed by the KC Group of Institutions did not exist on ground. The institution had taken scholarship money amount- KULLU: Alliance Air resumed operations between Delhi and Kullu after 115 days on Thursday. The flights were grounded in the wake of the lockdown. Akhilesh Vijayi, Alliance Air station manager, Kullu, said 12 passengers came from Delhi while two travelled from Kullu. — PTI KC Group of Una misappropriated~20-25cr between 2012 and 2017 ing to Rs 20-25 crore by showing fake students between 2012 and 2017. The same students were shown in Pandoga in Una as well as Nawanshahr in Punjab. Though it is the duty of the institution concerned to give correct details, apparent nexus between private institutions and some education department officials put the lid on the scam, sources said. The CBI has filed a chargesheet against 12 persons, including six Education Department officials and five functionaries of the KC Group. Dug-up streets in CM Khattar’s village cry for repairs Ravinder Saini Tribune News Service A villager negotiates a broken street at Rohtak’s Nindana village. TRIBUNE PHOTO Rohtak, July 16 The delay in the laying of sewer and water pipelines in Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar’s ancestral Nindana village in Rohtak district is posing a problem to its residents. A majority of the streets in the village under Mohammadpur and Khas panchayats have been dug up but the pipeline-laying work has remained stalled for past several months. Villagers are facing hardship as they are being forced to park their vehicles far away from their houses. “My son, a bank employee in Sonepat, used to go to his workplace in his car but now he is compelled to use a motorbike to commute,” said Ramphal Kaushik, a villager. Indrawati, another villager, said there was also the danger of tripping for the A ROUGH RIDE ■ The water pipeline-laying work in Nindana village has been held up for several months ■ Villagers are forced to park their vehicles away from their houses ■ The contractor has expressed inability to resume work due to shortage of labour and funds women wearing veil and carrying heavy load on their heads. “We have demanded the repair of the streets but no one is paying any heed,” she claimed. Jaswant, Mohammadpur sarpanch, said the non-availability of labour due to the Covid crisis was the reason behind the slow pace of work. The contractor, Kulbeer, however, expressed his inability to resume work because of shortage of labour and funds. “I started the work in January and the gov- ernment was to make payment in March but the payment of around Rs 2 crore is lying stuck due to the pandemic.” Akash Hooda, Junior Engineer (Public Health), said he had recently been transferred to the district, hence did not full information about the project. Located 30 km from the district headquarters, Nindana village has a population of more than 15,000. CLOSEST SUN SHOT One of the closest-ever images taken of the Sun by the European Space Agency on July 16 as part of a pan-European mission to study solar winds and flares that could have far-reaching impacts on Earth. AFP
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