26122020-TT-01.qxd 12/25/2020 10:51 PM Page 1 13 chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | vol.140 no.357 | 16 pages | ~6.00 | regd.no.chd/0006/2018-2020 established in 1881 himachal pradesh SC NOTICE TO OLI GOVT OVER PARL DISSOLUTION WORLD /thetribunechd HALF -TRUTHS , MAMATA ON KISAN SCHEME BACK PAGE CONTAINER SHORTAGE TO HIT OUTPUT, FEAR AUTOMAKERS BUSINESS /thetribunechd www.tribuneindia.com saturday, december 26,2020 Oppn misusing stir, claims Modi; give laws a year, Rajnath appeals to farmers Protesters firm, want ordinance to make support price a legal right No corporate Tribune News Service Delhi borders, said it would meet on Saturday to take a call can grab your NewDelhi/Chandigarh, Dec 25 on the offer. It said instead of Prime Minister Narendra interacting with a handful of land: Shah Modi today made another attempt to reach out to the protesting farmers on the three agricultural laws even as he accused the Opposition of misleading the farmers for petty political gains. Interacting virtually with farmers from across the country while transferring Rs 18,000 crore into the accounts of around nine crore farmers under the PMKisan scheme, he said, “The government is always open to talks, but the discussions must be based on facts.” The Sanyukt Kisan Morcha, a joint forum of farmers’ organisations protesting at the Farmers ptotest at the Ghazipur border near Delhi. MANAS RANJAN BHUI 7 US LAWMAKERS WRITE TO POMPEO OVER FARMERS’ PROTEST ONLINE CAMPAIGN TO SOLICIT NRI SUPPORT LAUNCHED farmers through video-conferencing, the PM should have visited Singhu or Tikri borders to address the farmers and resolve their issues. “The PM today said rumours are being spread on MSP and farmers are being misled. Why can’t the government come out with an ordinance to make MSP a legal right?” asked Harinder Singh Lakhowal, BKU (Lakhowal) general secretary. Union Minister Rajnath Singh, meanwhile, appealed to the farmers to try the new laws as an “experiment” for a year or two and in case these continued on page 13 AICC ignoring MPs’ protest in Delhi, says Jakhar New Delhi, December 25 Punjab Congress president Sunil Jakhar has taken exception to the fact that no senior AICC leader has visited Congress MPs from Punjab who have been sitting on a dharna at Jantar Mantar here. “Everyone keeps talking IN BRIEF Rajinikanth rushed to hospital for BP HYDERABAD: Superstar Rajinikanth was on Friday admitted to Apollo Hospital here as he was suffering from severe blood pressure fluctuations. He was shooting for a movie here for the past 10 days. The actor has tested negative for Covid-19. — PTI Dalit man thrashed for using handpump BANDA: A 45-year-old Dalit man was beaten up in a village in Banda district of Uttar Pradesh on Friday allegedly by people who objected to his using a government-installed handpump, the police said. The victim has lodged an FIR over the incident. — PTI DDC members to take oath on Dec 28 NEW DELHI: The J&K administration plans to hold swearing-in ceremony for the newly elected members of the District Development Councils (DDC) on December 28 even as the race to form the council governing structures intensified. INSIDE about strengthening the cause of farmers, but the AICC has been ignoring its own MPs who have been protesting here for days now. No senior leader has met Congress MPs Ravneet Bittu, JS Gill and or Gurjeet Aujla,” Jakhar told The Tribune today. On Thursday, the Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad spoke of how Congress RS members staged a nightlong dharna near Gandhi’s statue after the farm Bills were “undemocratically” passed in the Upper House. Reacting to New Delhi, December 25 No corporate can snatch away a farmer’s land as long as Narendra Modi was the Prime Minister, Union Home Minister Amit Shah said on Friday, asserting that the provision of MSP would continue and mandis won’t be shut down. At a PM-Kisan Samman Nidhi event in Kishangarh village of Delhi, Shah said if farmer’s unions felt that any provision of the three new farm laws was against their interests, the government was ready to discuss and consider it with an open mind. Shah blamed the Opposition, including the Congress, for spreading lies about the MSP and other provisions of the laws. — PTI it, Jakhar said, “You are talking of Rajya Sabha MPs but why not go and meet your own party MPs from Punjab who have been agitating for farmers at Jantar Mantar? AICC leaders by not supporting Punjab MPs in this protest are falling in BJP’s trap.” — TNS Protesting farmers try to breach a police barricade in Bathinda on Friday. TRIBUNE PHOTO: PAWAN SHARMA Punjab farmers gherao BJP leaders, disrupt functions Tribune News Service Chandigarh, December 25 Amid the stalemate, farmers in Punjab on Friday stepped up their agitation, not allowing BJP leaders to hold functions in memory of Atal Bihari Vajpayee on his birth anniversary. In Jalandhar, Bharti Kisan Union (Rajewal) activists held a protest outside the residence of former Cabinet Minister Manoranjan Kalia. Several farmers received minor injuries as they tried to breach the police barricade outside Kalia’s house. In Bathinda, farmers disrupted a function at Amrik Singh road, forcing the BJP workers to flee. A video of the incident went viral on the social media. MORE EX-SERVICEMEN LEAVE FOR DELHI Hundreds of ex-servicemen left for Singhu and Tikri protest sites on Friday. “We will stay there and offer all possible help,” said Pargat Singh. BKU Ugrahan leader Harjeet Singh, also an ex-serviceman, said: “Today, the first batch left. More are preparing to leave. To save our country, we must support the farmers,” he added. Farmers held a protest outside a hotel in Muktsar where a BJP function was underway. Sources said the BJP activists escaped from a back door of the hotel under police protection. Farmers led by the Krantikari Kisan Union picketed outside the residence of the Patiala district president of the BJP . One -time fee for Hry 150 troops in Delhi for R-Day test positive job exams over 3 yrs Vaccine rollout: Dry run in Punjab, Gujarat, Andhra, Assam next week Tribune News Service EDUCATION LOAN Chandigarh, December 25 From January 1, all candidates appearing for Haryana Public Service Commission (HPSC) and Haryana Staff Selection Commission (HSSC) entrance exams will have to pay fee only once for all exams they intend to take over the next three years, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar announced today. The applicants will not have to pay separate fee for separate posts, he said. After three years, the applicant would have to register again. The CM also declared that higher education loans would be made available to those studying in Haryana institutes. The loan under the Credit Guarantee Scheme would be available at 7.5 per cent interest. In case any student was unable to repay the education loan, its repayment would be made from the Haryana Credit Fund, which has been specially created for this purpose. The CM also announced to hike the monthly allowance ■ Higher education loan will be made available to those studying in Haryana institutes at 7.5 per cent interest ■ If a student is unable to repay the loan, it will be repaid from the Haryana Credit Fund ALLOWANCES HIKED ■ ~20,000 monthly allowance for all Arjuna, Dronacharya and Dhyan Chand awardees ■ ~5,000 will be paid to Bhim awardees every month New Delhi, December 25 More than 150 Army troops, who are in New Delhi for the forthcoming Republic Day Parade, have tested positive for Covid-19, even as the country prepares to hold the first dry run to test readiness for the vaccine rollout. The troops who tested positive have been isolated and are being medically managed. They are part of the contingents slated to march down the Rajpath on January 26. The Parade is on for now and there is no proposal to not have the marching contingents. The troops have come from COLD STORAGE FACILITY COVID-19CASES INDIA ■ The present system consists of 85,634 cold storage (2 to 8°C) equipment across 28,947 points ■ The current capacity can cov- er vaccination for first 3 crore target beneficiaries COUNT RECOVERED 97, 17, 834 FRESH FATALITIES 336 TOTAL DEATHS 1,47,092 1,01,46,845 TOTAL RECOVERED DEATHS WORLD 7,99,83,707 5,63,38,561 17,53,506 GUJ QUOTA STIR LEADER HELD FOR B’DAY BASH AMID PANDEMIC various locations across the country. They travelled to New Delhi in the last week of November. All of them underwent Covid test and 150 of them have tested positive. The vaccine dry run is scheduled to be held on December 28 and 29 in four states—Punjab (north), Gujarat (west), Andhra Pradesh (south) and Assam (northeast). Each state will plan the trial in two districts and five sessions across district hospitals, community and primary health centres, urban sites, private health facilities and rural sites. The idea is to prepare for parallel administration of the vaccine at multiple locations, once a vaccine is licensed. The trial will test the efficacy of India’s digital vaccine delivery platform Co-WIN and of the cold storage and transportation arrangements. — TNS for Arjuna, Dronacharya and Dhyan Chand awardees to Rs 20,000 per month from Rs 5,000 per month at present. A monthly allowance of Rs 5,000 has also been started for Bhim awardees. The winners of Tenzing Norgay National Adventure Award will also get Rs 20,000 per month. Speaking at a Good Governance Day event, the CM said people would be able to get their property registered at any tehsil office in their continued on page 13 Chandigarh, December 25 Three years after making his First Class debut, Shubhman Gill gets to play his first Test for India in Australia on Saturday. It has been a meteoric rise for the Fazilka-born youngster who has ticked almost every box in the junior cricket to make a place in the senior team. From making a record 351 runs in the Punjab inter-district U-16 tournament to becoming the Player of the Tournament (372 runs) in the 2018 U-19 World Cup, to becoming the youngest Indian to score a First Class dou- SHUBHMAN GILL ble-hundred against WI-A in Trinidad and Tobago in 2019, Gill has been a proven performer in every step of his short cricketing career. Twice, in consecutive years (2013-14, 2014-15), he was adjudged the best junior cricketer of the year by the BCCI. His childhood coaches say Gill’s sincerity towards his passion makes him a standout player while teammates know him as a very career-conscious cricketer. Gill is said to have consciously charted his domestic career on the lines of Virat Kohli, comparing his scores with Kohli’s, tournament-by-tournament and year-by-year, often outscoring his mentor. As an opener, Gill’s First-Class career for Punjab has been remarkable with 2,270 runs in 23 matches at an average of 68.78. continued on page 13 6 JD(U) MLAs join BJP in Arunachal Itanagar, December 25 The JD (United) received a major jolt in Arunachal Pradesh, with six of its seven MLAs shifting allegiance to the ruling BJP a bulletin , issued by the state Legislative Assembly said. The lone MLA from the People’s Party of Arunachal, Kardo Nyigyor, has also joined the saffron party. The development comes a day ahead of the announcement of the panchayat and municipal poll results. The JD(U) MLAs who switched sides are Talem Taboh (Rumgong constituency), Hayeng Mangfi (Chayang Tajo), Jikke Tako (Tali), Dorjee Wangdi Kharma (Kalaktang), Dongru Siongju (Bomdila) and Kanggong Taku (Mariyang-Geku), the bulletin said. — PTI Water level 53% below normal in Punjab dams Tribune News Service Fazilka lad Gill makes Test debut today Tribune News Service While in Malout the farmers closed the gate of a hall where a BJP function was being held, a huge crowd comprising farmers and members of the Punjab Students Union surrounded the farmhouse of BJP leader Iqbal Singh Lalpura at Kalwan village in Ropar. The protesters later targeted a private telco’s tower at Jhajj village, snapping the power supply. Similar reports were received from Kotkapura and Fazilka. Led by union vice-president Kirpal Singh Mussapur, Bharti Kisan Union (Doaba) activists in Phagwara gheraoed local BJP leaders who had gathered at a hotel. They raised slogans against the Modi government and Union Minister Som Parkash. Merrymakers crowd The Ridge in Shimla on Friday. TRIBUNE PHOTO: AMIT KANWAR Norms given go-by as tourists throng Shimla Bhanu P Lohumi Tribune News Service Shimla, December 25 Social distancing norms were thrown to the winds as tourists thronged the ‘Queen of Hills’ on Friday to celebrate Christmas and New Year. The hotels were packed to capacity even as the town’s Mall Road, Lower Bazaar and The Ridge saw crowds of merrymakers. President of the Shimla Few visitors wearing face masks, rue locals Hotel and Restaurant Association Sanjay Sood said it was owing to the relaxation in the night curfew and permission to shops to open on Sunday that there had been a surge in the tourist numbers. “Few are wearing face masks. Despite the Covid pandemic, it seems like a carnival,” observed a local resi- dent, rather anxiously. Many tourists parked their vehicles along the roads, leading to congestion, despite the heavy police deployment to ensure there were no traffic jams. Shimla SP Mohit Chawla said on an average 50-55 challans were issued for flouting the face mask norm. He said eight police teams were in the field to ensure that the Covid SOPs were strictly adhered to and till day 3,877 challans had been issued in the district. “However, there are limitations. Families cannot be asked to separate,” he explained. Not disappointed over a white Christmas, a couple from Ludhiana said, “We have come out almost after eight months and this amazing atmosphere in Shimla has made the trip memorable.” Chandigarh, December 25 The water level in major reservoirs across the northern region remains low this year, with the present storage being 53 per cent below normal in Punjab and 25 per cent below normal in HP . The current water level in the Thein Dam reservoir on the Ravi in Punjab is 498.35 m against the upper limit of 527.91 m with the available storage being 0.567 billion cubic meters (BCM), according continued on page 13 AVAILABLE STORAGE 24% 47% 49% THEIN DAM BHAKRA DAM PONG DAM
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