YK MYK SELF-RELIANCE IN DEFENCE IS STRATEGIC NECESSITY: ARMY CHIEF THAILAND OPEN: PV SINDHU THROUGH TO QUARTER-FINALS NATION SPORTS Morning India Rs. 5 RANCHI FRIDAY, 22 JAN, 2021 PG-12, YEAR—10, ISSUE—258 (RNI NO: JHAENG / 2012 / 44137) WEATHER TODAY MAX 23 C HC annuls govt advt for engineers’ job SANJAY SAHAY MIN 07 C Sky will be clear. AT A GLANCE SC ISSUES NOTICE TO MAKERS OF ‘MIRZAPUR’ AND AMAZON PRIME VIDEO NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Thursday issued notices to the makers and producers of the web-series ‘Mirzapur’ and Amazon Prime Video. A Bench headed by the CJI, SA Bobde, admitted the plea and sought a response from the makers of the web-series and OTT platform Amazon Prime Video. The petition sought a direction that the government of India set up a core screening committee for web series, films, or other programmes which are directly released online platforms. PG 5 COVID-19: NEARLY 10 LAKHS VACCINATED, COWIN SOFTWARE ENHANCED NEW DELHI: As many as 1,92,581 beneficiaries were vaccinated against COVID-19 on Thursday during inoculation drive in 27 states and UTs, taking the total number of beneficiaries who received jab to nearly 10 lakh, said Union Health Ministry. The Ministry also said that enhancement has been made in CoWIN software (COVID Vaccine Intelligence Network) to strengthen the process of vaccination. "The provisional figures for today, up to 6 pm - vaccination sessions were organised in 27 states and UTs and a total of 1,92,581 beneficiaries were vaccinated. CORONA METER INDIA TOTAL CASES: 1,06,11,728 TOTAL DEATH: 152,906 WORLD TOTAL CASES: 97,421,975 TOTAL DEATH: 2,086,148 RANCHI: Jharkhand High Court on Thursday cancelled the advertisement issued by the government providing 10 per cent reservation for economically weaker section (EWS) of the upper castes in the appointment for assistant engineers (AEs) in various departments. Justice SK Dwivedi passed the order a day before the Jharkhand Public Service Commission (JPSC) was to conduct the main examination for the posts. The preliminary examination was held in May 2020. Saurav Shekhar, who appeared for the petitioner, said that the state government had issued advertisements for AEs’ vacancies in 2013 and 2015 providing 50 per cent reservation in posts. Meanwhile, the central government made an amendment to the Constitution (103rd) providing 10 per cent reservation for the EWS group. The state government issued another advertisement in 2019 in which vacancies of 2013 and 2015 were clubbed while the previous advertisements were cancelled. The advertisement was for appointment of 552 assistant engineers in different departments, including PWD, DWSD and REO. The last advertisement provided 10 per cent reservation for all the posts which was challenged in the court. The court said that the state government cannot give reservation for EWS in vacancies arising before the amendment, adding the benefit is applicable only to vacancies arising after the amendment. Notably, the 103rd Amendment Act amended Articles 15 and 16 of the Constitution by inserting 15(6) and 16(6). It received ‘PARAKRAM DIWAS’ presidential assent on 12 January 2019 and was published in the Gazette on the same day. The court said that the state government should continue with the advertisement issued in 2013 and 2015 and issue a fresh advertisement for vacancies in 2019. The court said that it was not giving any verdict on the amendment but on the issue whether the same could be applicable to vacancies arising before its promulgation. The state government now has to send an amended request to the Jharkhand Public Service Commission in this regard. 5 killed in SII complex fire, but Covishield plant safe PUNE: At least five persons suffocated to death in a major fire that engulfed an underconstruction building in a plant of global vaccine giant, Serum Institute of India (SII), here on Thursday afternoon, triggering nationwide anxiety. Health Minister Rajesh Tope and Pune Mayor Murlidhar Mohol announced that five persons, believed to be labourers, had perished in the blaze and their bodies were recovered during the sweeping and cooling operations. As the state government ordered a high-level inquiry into the tragedy, another four persons were rescued safely from the blaze which erupted on two or three upper floors of the SII building which was being readied for a BCG vaccine plant. Allaying nationwide concerns over the fate of the Covid-19 vaccines being man- Smoke billows out of Serum Institute of India in Pune on Thursday. ufactured by the company, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray held a press conference while SII CEO Adar Poonawalla issued a personal statement of reassurance. "I would like to reassure all governments and the public that there would no loss of Covishield production due to multiple production buildings that I had kept in reserve to deal with such contingencies at SII," Poonawalla said, ANI seeking to quell anxieties among the company’s global clientele. Thackeray discussed and reviewed the situation with top officials and said the SII had informed that the Covid-19 vaccine produc- tion was not affected in any manner, and the priority was to bring the blaze under control and save people. Similarly, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar, Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, Health Minister Tope, FDA Minister Rajendra Shingne, and others spoke with the SII top brass to apprise themselves of the exact scenario. Though sabotage has been ruled out, in view of the national and global concerns the tragedy evoked, Pawar said that a thorough probe would be conducted into the incident, while reiterating that the Covidshield line facility was unaffected. Visiting the site, Shiv Sena workers’ wing Bharatiya Kamgar Sena’s General Secretary Raghunath Kuchik, accorded a MoS rank, termed the tragedy as "shocking and accidental" and hoped that there are no more casualties. PM to kick-start celebrations in Kolkata on Jan 23 KOLKATA: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will join the celebrations of ‘Parakram Diwas’ in Kolkata on January 23 to commemorate the 125th birth anniversary of India’s freedom icon Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. Sources said PM Modi will preside over the inaugural function of the ‘Parakram Diwas’ celebrations at Victoria Memorial in the city. A cultural programme "Amra Nuton Jouboneri Doot", based on the theme of Netaji, is also scheduled to be held on the day. A Projection Mapping Show on Netaji and a permanent exhibition will be inaugurated on the occasion. The state unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to address a public meeting in Kolkata the auspicious day. Earlier, the Centre had decided to celebrate Netaji’s 125th birth anniversary on January 23 every year as ‘Parakram Diwas’ to inspire people of the country. The initiative was taken in order to honour and remember Netaji’s indomitable spirit and selfless service to the nation. After attending the event in Kolkata, the PM will travel Jerenga Pathar in Assam’s Sivasagar to distribute 1.06 lakh land pattas and allotment certificates, sources said. Meanwhile, BJP president J.P. Nadda was given a warm welcome at Lucknow airport when he arrived here on a two-day visit. Nadda’s visit was re- Farmers body rejects JOE BIDEN’S DAY ONE IN OFFICE Signs order to end Trump’s Muslim govt proposal to travel ban; halts US withdrawal from WHO suspend farm laws NEW DELHI: Farmer leaders on Thursday rejected the government’s offer to suspend the three farm laws for 12 to 16 months. At a full general body meeting of the Sanyukta Kisan Morcha, a complete repeal of three central farm laws and enacting a legislation for remunerative MSP for every farmer were again reiterated as the outstanding demands of the farmers movement. "The Morcha pays homage to more than 140 farmers who have lost their lives in the agitation. These companions are separated from us while fighting this mass movement. Their sacrifice will not go in vain and we will not go back without the repeal of these farm laws," said a statement released by the Sanyukta Kisan Morcha. FARMERS, POLICE MEETING ON TRACTOR RALLY ENDS IN STALEMATE NEW DELHI: The meeting between farmer leaders and Delhi Police officials on the issue of the tractor march on January 26 remained inconclusive. The meeting was held at the Mantram Resort on Thursday. Now, another meeting is expected to be held on Friday. However, the farmers will discuss all these issues among themselves first, for which a joint Kisan Morcha meeting will be held at the Singhu border. By Thursday evening it is expected that the farmers will unveil their strategy. WASHINGTON: In a blow to his predecessor Donald Trump’s actions to limit immigration, US President Joe Biden on Wednesday has ended the ‘Muslim travel ban’, which blocked travel to the United States from several predominantly Muslim and African countries. Hours after taking the office, Biden on Wednesday signed 17 executive orders memorandums and proclamations including ending the Muslim travel ban. He has directed the State Department to restart visa processing for individuals from the affected countries and to develop ways to address the harm caused to those who were prevented from coming to the United States because of the ban, The New York Times reported. Implemented in 2017 during Trump’s first week in office, the Muslim Ban initially restricted travel from seven Muslim-majority nations: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The ban faced several legal challenges, but the Supreme Court in 2018 upheld the final version of the measure. The Muslim travel ban so far restricts citizens from 12 countries -Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Nigeria, Myanmar, Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Sudan, Tanzania and North Korea -and some Venezuelan officials and their relatives from obtaining a broad range of US visas, NPR reported. With another executive order, Biden has bolstered the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program that protects from deportation immigrants brought to the United States as children, often called Dreamers. He informed United Nations Director-General Antonio Guterres about the US’ decision to re-join the World Health Organisation. Walking back on the former administration’s plan to withdraw the US from the WHO, Biden said: "This letter constitutes a retraction by the Government of the United States of the letter dated July 6, 2020, notifying you that the Government of the United States intended to withdraw from the World Health Organization (WHO), effective July 6, 2021.” 92 countries post request for Made-in-India vaccines N inety-two countries have approached India for Covid-19 vaccines, bolstering New Delhis credentials as the vaccine hub of the world. Highly placed sources said that scores of countries are approaching India, as the word spreads that Indian vaccines are showing negligible side-effects, since the immunization drive in the country began on Saturday. India is sending its domestically developed vaccines to several neighbouring countries including Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar. In a letter to PM Modi on Tuesday, Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit of the Dominican Republic, has also requested for inoculation, signally that the demand for Indian jabs has acquired a transcontinental appeal. "As we enter 2021 and persevere in our fight against Covid-19, Dominica’s population of 72,100 is in urgent need of enough doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. I, therefore, request, with great humility and respect, that you assist us by donating the doses we need to make our population safe (optimally 70,000 first and second doses)," wrote Skerrit. In other parts of Latin America, Brazil, which has the second highest number of coronavirus cases in the world next only to the United States, has sent a special plane to pick up Indian vaccines from Pune. A Brazilian plane is expected to fly the first 2 million doses of a Covid-19 vaccine purchased by the government’s Fiocruz biomedical institute. According to a Reuters report from Sao Paulo, Health Minister Eduardo Pazuello said the documentation is ready for bringing the AstraZeneca-Oxford University vaccine being produced at the Serum Institute of India. Brazil’s Anvisa has scheduled a meeting for next Sunday to decide on the emergency use of the vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford as well as one by developed by China’s Sinovac Biotec. Meanwhile the Bolivian government had also signed a contract with India’s Serum Institute for the supply of 5 million doses of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine. President Luis Arce said that combined with a recent deal to buy 5.2 million Sputnik V vaccine doses from Russia, Bolivia now expected to be able to inoculate all of its vaccinable population. The sources said that in tune with Prime Minister Modi’s message that India’s vaccine approach are intended to heal humanity, India would not be averse to provide vaccines to Pakistan, as part of a drive to eliminate the virus globally. And in the course of time if the Chinese vaccine does not work, India would not hesitate to supply jabs to Beijing as well. The sources pointed out that India’s vaccine exports to China may go a long way in addressing India’s adverse trade balance with the Middle Kingdom. So far, China’s vaccine has shown patchy results. For instance, after Thailand has discovered that the efficacy of the two million doses of the Chinese Sinovac Biotech Covid-19 vaccine, has dropped dramatically. The Bangkok Post said that the Thai Ministry of Public Health has requested further information about the vaccine it has ordered from China following a report "it might not be as effective as first thought" even as it goes ahead with its plan to receive and administer the vaccine CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC from Sinovac Biotech. "We are asking for information directly from Sinovac, so we are waiting for their response to get all the facts," Supakit Sirilak, Thailand’s Director-General of Medical Science Department, was quoted as saying by the newspaper. Singapore too has confirmed that the vaccine developed by China’s Sinovac Biotech will have to go through regulatory scrutiny and authorisation by the country’s Health Sciences Authority (HSA) before being rolled out for the public. "We will go through the data carefully when it comes, rather than depending on reported numbers. It’s better to rely on official data that we receive from Sinovac itself," said Singapore’s Health Minister Gan Kim Yong according to a report in The Straits Times. scheduled and he arrived about six hours late on Thursday evening. Chief minister Yogi Adityanath, deputy chief ministers, Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma, along with over a dozen ministers greeted the party president at the airport. Hundreds of party workers lined up along the route to accord a welcome to their party president. The BJP president drove straight to the party headquarters where he will interact with ministers and discuss the road map for the upcoming panchayat and then the 2022 assembly elections. Later in the night, he will hold a meeting with the party’s core committee. Despite a huge media presence at the airport, the BJP president did not speak to the media though he stopped his convoy to acknowledge the greetings of party workers. The BJP national president will, on Friday, address a conference of social medial volunteers and intellectuals and also attend a meeting of Chinhat rural area and booth and district presidents. COS HAVE TO PAY GST ON REMUNERATION OF INDEPENDENT DIRECTORS NEW DELHI: A company is liable to pay GST on remunerations paid to Independent Directors on a reverse charge basis. The Rajasthan Appellate Authority on Advance Ruling (AAR) has also clarified that the parts of Director’s remuneration which are declared as ‘salaries’ in the books of a company and subjected to TDS under Section 192 of the IT Act, are not taxable, being consideration for services by an employee to the employer. The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) also clarified through circular that in respect of such Directors who are not the employees of the said company, the services provided by them to the company, in lieu of remuneration as the consideration for the said services, are clearly outside the scope of Schedule III of the CGST Act and are therefore taxable. As per the CBIC circular, service tax liability arises for the company only in respect of payments made to non-whole time Directors. Further, the development would not bring revenue to the government as any GST paid on salary to the Director under reverse charge mechanism would be available to any company as input tax credit and the whole exercise would revenue neutral.