16012021-TT-01.qxd 1/15/2021 11:24 PM Page 1 13 chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | vol.141 no.16 | 18 pages | ~6.00 | regd.no.chd/0006/2021-2023 established in 1881 haryana BIDEN’S $1.9-TRILLION PLAN TO REVIVE ECONOMY WORLD /thetribunechd GAIL ANNOUNCES ~1,046-CR SHARE BUYBACK PROGRAMME BUSINESS RAHUL, PRIYANKA JOIN CONG MARCH TO RAJ NIWAS BACK PAGE /thetribunechd www.tribuneindia.com saturday | 16 january 2021 Centre wants unions to be more flexible, next meeting on Jan 19 Tribune News Service ‘LIES’ OVER R-DAY MARCH New Delhi, January 15 Protesting farmer unions stuck to their demand for a complete repeal of the three farm laws during the ninth round of talks with three Central ministers Narendra Singh Tomar, Piyush Goyal and Som Prakash. While asking the unions to be more flexible in their approach, Tomar also told them that they should form “formal and informal groups and discuss the laws to prepare concrete proposals for discussions in the next meeting”. He said the government was hopeful of discus- UNIONS TAKE UP RAIDS The Sanyukta Kisan Morcha has said “misconceptions” were being spread over their ‘tractor march’. “Disturbing the R-Day parade isn’t our motive. We will release our plan after the SC hearing on January 18,” it said. There was also a discussion on the NIA raids on transporters in Punjab providing logistic support to the stir, said farm leader Joginder Singh Ugrahan. The government promised that it will address the issue. FARM BODY MOVES SC SAY NO LINK WITH SFJ The Bharatiya Kisan Sangh on Friday moved the SC seeking impleadment in the pending matters pertaining to the farm laws. It also sought expansion of the SC-appointed panel. The unions made it clear that the stir had nothing to do with the Sikhs for Justice. Therefore, they said there should be no projection from the government that it was involved. sions reaching a decisive stage at the next round on January 19. Apparently, at Farmer leaders after the ninth round of talks with the government in New Delhi on Friday. MANAS RANJAN BHUI one point during the fivehour meeting today, Tomar asked the unions: “When exactly will the agitation be called off and what will it take?” He wanted to know if the unions would withdraw the protests if one of the two key demands (MSP guaran- tee and repeal of the three laws) was met. Kavitha Kuruganti of the Sanyukta Kisan Morcha said the unions clarified that both demands were equally important. Both sides reaffirmed their commitment to continue with the direct dialogue process. “The government said it was bound by the Supreme Court process,” said Darshan Pal. He said the unions opposed the government’s assertion that the Supreme Court would decide if the laws had to be repealed. “The Lok Sabha is the House of people elected by the people of India. These laws have been made by Parliament and should be repealed by Parliament,” he stressed. There was also a discussion on the financial health of the FCI. Agri laws fine, but social security net must: IMF New Delhi, January 15 The IMF has given its conditional backing to the farm laws, saying these had the potential to represent a significant step towards agricultural reforms, but the government must adequately protect those adversely impacted during the transition to this new system as well as strengthen the social safety net. Gerry Rice, the IMF spokesperson, said, “The measures will enable farmers to directly contract with sellers. However, it is crucial the social safety net protects those who might be hit during the transition.” — TNS V-drive, world’s biggest, takes off TRPscam: Damning Arnab, Aditi Tandon DAY 1 Tribune News Service NewDelhi, January15 The Centre on Friday mounted an all-out social media outreach to dispel myths as India prepared for the rollout of the national Covid vaccination drive, the world’s biggest, at 10.30 am tomorrow. Three lakh healthcare and frontline workers will be vaccinated in the first phase of the drive on Saturday with randomly allocated Covishield and indigenous Covaxin shots. Hundred beneficiaries will be administered doses at each of the 3,006 sites across the country with Prime Minister Narendra Modi all set to launch the campaign and witness first jabs being delivered. The PM is expected to virtually connect with session sites as the vaccination progresses at around 50 locations. Asked what he considered the top challenge ahead of the D-Day, Member, Health, NITI Aayog, VK Paul said, “We hope all three lakh beneficiaries registered to get the vaccine on day one arrive at the allocated sites and INT'L DEBUT: ALL 3 FORMATS, ONE TOUR ■ Pacer Thangarasu Natarajan, who came to Australia as a net bowler, on Friday became the first Indian cricketer to make his international debut across all three formats during the same tour ■ The 29-year-old Tamil Nadu player was one of the rookies named in the playing eleven against Australia in the fourth and final Test ■ He made his international debut in the third ODI . RACIST BARBS AGAIN PAGE 17 IN BRIEF CoBRA commando shoots himself RAIPUR: A commando of the CRPF’s elite unit CoBRA, Harjeet Singh (40), allegedly shot himself with his service weapon in Chhattisgarh’s Sukma district during an anti-Naxal operation on Friday. — PTI 3 LAKH healthcare, frontline workers to get jabs on Saturday 100 beneficiaries at each of the 3,006 sites across the country NEW YORK: A person of Indian origin (PIO) in the US, Bhupinder Singh (57), shot his 14-year-old daughter and his mother-in-law before turning the gun on himself inside his home in the town of Schodack. — PTI ❝ AT PGI, 100 TO GET SHOTS Of the 11,500 staffers at PGI-Chandigarh, 100 have been selected through computer randomisation to receive the first dose of the vaccine 80% INDIANS TRUST JABS To boost vaccine confidence, the Centre released the findings of a survey showing 80% of the Indians trust the vaccines against 66% in the UK, 62% in Germany, 59% in the US and 40% in Russia COVID-19CASES INDIA COUNT 1,05,27,683 TOTAL RECOVERED DEATHS RECOVERED 1,01,62,738 FRESH FATALITIES 191 TOTAL DEATHS 1,51,918 WORLD 9,37,19,107 6,69,83,355 20,06,234 receive their shots.” Vaccine hesitancy remains a key concern for Covid-19 managers as independent experts continue to question the efficacy of Covaxin, which is yet to complete the Phase 3 trials. Paul said in emergency situations, the Indian law permits Phase 2 immunogenicity data to be used as a surrogate for the Phase 3 efficacy data which has happened in the case of Covaxin. “Both vaccines are safe and there have been no major side effects reported,” Paul said. Health Minister Harsh Vardhan spent his day firefighting rumours about vaccines and said vaccines did not cause infertility nor was there any reported case of vaccine derived Covid virus. Sending a clear message that the vaccination is not yet HP govt schools to reopen in Feb SHIMLA: With a steady decline in Covid cases, the HP Government has decided to reopen schools from next month by strictly following standard operating procedures. While the summer-closing schools will open for students from February 1, classes in winter-closing schools will begin from February 15. The decision to open schools was taken by the Cabinet at its meeting chaired by Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur. All government colleges will be opened for regular classes from February 8 after the winter vacation. — TNS 13 DEATHS POST VACCINATION IN NORWAY meant for the general public, Vardhan said the self-registration module of the government’s Co-WIN (app for Covid shot rollout) has not been released yet. “Be wary of fraudulent apps with similar names. Co-WIN app is not available in stores,” he added. edit: vaccination day Don’t test our patience, warns Army Chief amid LAC standoff New Delhi, January 15 In a clear message to China amid the border standoff, Army Chief General MM Naravane said no one should commit the mistake of testing India’s patience. Terming last year as “challenging”, he said the attempt to alter the status quo along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) was responded to in a befitting manner, said General Naravane while delivering his customary Army Day address at Parade Ground in Delhi Cantonment. “I want to assure the country that the sacrifice of the Galwan braves will not go in vain,” he added. continued on page 15 ‘Sacrifice of Galwan braves won’t go in vain’ BADGE OF HONOUR: Army Chief MM Naravane presents Sena Medal to Maj Aman Singh at Parade Ground in New Delhi on Friday. PTI 400 TERRORISTS IN PoK CAMPS The Army Chief said 300 to 400 terrorists were present in camps in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and waiting to sneak into India. Pakistan was adamant about using terrorism as state policy, he added. INSIDE Prez gives ~5L for Ram Temple New Delhi, January 15 President Ram Nath Kovind donated Rs 5,00,100 for the construction of the Ram Temple at Ayodhya on Friday. With this, the fund collection drive launched by the VHP for the Ram Temple has begun. The drive is supported by the RSS and its affiliates. The PM and political leaders will be approached for donations. Kovind handed over the cheque to a team of members headed by Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust Treasurer. — TNS Dera Bassi in Punjab reports bird flu cases Aparna Banerji Tribune News Service PIO kills daughter, mother-in-law, self GOVT DISPELS MYTHS No infertility, no infection, we’re good to go. Both vaccines are safe and no major side-effects have been reported. Health Minister Jalandhar, January 15 Punjab today reported its first bird flu cases with samples from two poultry farms in Dera Bassi sub-division of Mohali district testing positive for avian influenza at a Jalandhar lab. The samples have been sent to the High Security Animal Disease Laboratory in Bhopal for confirmation. SAMPLES FROM 2 POULTRY FARMS TEST POSITIVE ■ The samples were taken from Alpha and Royal farms at Behra village in Dera Bassi ■ Were found positive in RTPCR test at a Jalandhar lab ■ Sent to Bhopal lab for confirmation of influenza strain Officials at the Regional Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (RDDL) in Jalandhar said the samples, collected from Alpha and Royal farms at Behra village in Dera Bassi, were found positive by RT-PCR test. The RDDL is the only lab north of Delhi where tests related to livestock and poultry diseases are conducted. It caters to six states and two UTs—Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir, Chandigarh and Ladakh. Dr Mohinder Pal Singh, RDDL Joint Director, said, “The Dera Bassi samples have been found ‘suspected continued on page 15 ex-BARC boss chats leaked Tribune News Service New Delhi, January 15 A supplementary chargesheet filed by the Mumbai Police in the ongoing TRP scam alleges that the now arrested ex-chief executive officer of the Broadcast Audience Research Council, Partho Dasgupta, used his position to help Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami maintain TRP lead. The chargesheet has 500 pages of WhatsApp conversations between Arnab and Dasgupta. Parts of the chats, which created ripples on the social media today, reveal how Dasgupta allegedly told Arnab of the new Telecom Regulatory Authority of India proposal to reform the TRP measurement mechanism could “harm both the Republic TV and BJP”. The conversation is dated March 25, 2019, with Dasgup- Cops: Dasgupta helped Republic TV rise to No. 1 spot in ratings ta sending Arnab a confidential BARC letter on WhatsApp, saying he had jammed the NBA and asking for Arnab's help through the PMO, which Arnab promises saying, “noted and will happen.” The Republic TV chief then says he is meeting the PM on coming Thursday. Sharing snapshots of the chats on the social media, advocate Prashant Bhushan tweet- ed: “The leaked WhatsApp chats of #ArnabGoswami are far more explosive than #RadiaTapes. They show the unholy nexus of media with those in power; It shows how TRP is manipulated; It shows how cynically fake news is propagated; Above all, it lays bare the prime Dalal of Dalali street!” Bhushan said the chats showed “unprecedented access to power in this government.” Several netizens questioned the chats which reveal the alleged role of Dasgupta in convincing Arnab to thwart the TRAI proposal of measuring TV viewership digitally through a specially installed software in a set top box. Another chat reveals Dasgupta asking Arnab if he could get him a media adviser’s role in the PMO. Yet another conversation has Arnab telling the exBARC chief: “The PM is being dealt differently.”
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