YK MYK DELHI CIVIC BYPOLLS RESULTS KINDLES NEW HOPES FOR OPPN OPINION Rs. 3 KOLKATA THURSDAY, 4 MARCH, 2021 PG-12, YEAR—7, ISSUE—287 (RNI NO: WBENG / 2014 / 56803) WEATHER TODAY MAX 34 C MIN 22 C I-T RAIDS B TOWN'S ANURAG KASHYAP, TAPSEE, VIKAS BAHL SCREEN & CINEMA Morning India Mamata to file papers for Nandigram on Mar 11 Sky will be partly cloudy. AT A GLANCE 6 SCRIBES, INCLUDING AP PHOTOGRAPHER, CHARGED BY MYANMAR KOLKATA: Myanmar's military junta have formally brought criminal charges against an Associated Press photographer and five other local journalists over their coverage of anticoup protests, their lawyer said. AP photographer Thein Zaw, 32, was arrested on Saturday when he was covering a demonstration in Myanmar's largest city Yangon. Zaw's lawyer said he and five other Myanmar journalists had been charged under a law against "causing fear, spreading false news or agitating directly or indirectly a government employee". CONCERNED FOR PARTY, DON'T WANT TO WEAKEN IT, SAYS SHARMA NEW DELHI: After the Congress asked the leaders to join hands to fight against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in elections, the dissenting camp leader Anand Sharma said that he is concerned for the party and don't want to weaken it and has utmost respect for party's interim chief Sonia Gandhi. The infight in the party is getting intense as the Rahul Gandhi loyalists and the dissenters are at loggerheads. While Anand Sharma maintained that there should be civilised dialogue after Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury criticised him for questioning the alliance with the ISF. MICROSOFT WARNS CUSTOMERS AGAINST NEW CHINA CYBER ATTACK NEW DELHI: Microsoft has warned its customers against a new sophisticated nationstate cyber attack that has its origin in China and is primarily targeting on-premises 'Exchange Server' software of the tech giant. Called "Hafnium," it operates from China and is attacking infectious disease researchers, law firms, higher education institutions. CORONA METER INDIA TOTAL CASES: 1,11,40,122 TOTAL DEATH: 157,386 WORLD TOTAL CASES: 115,419,485 TOTAL DEATH: 2,562,876 KOLKATA: It is official now. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is the TMC candidate in Nandigram. According to TMC sources, she is going to submit her nomination papers for the constituency on March 11, Shivratri day. According to Trinamool sources, Mamata Banerjee will go to the office of the Haldia or Tamluk sub-divisional magistrate on March 11 and submit her nomination papers. The Election Commission has announced eight phases of voting in the State. The second phase of the vote will be on April 1 in Nandigram. According to Trinamool sources, the party's list of candidates for the first three rounds of vot- ing will be released by Friday. Mamata Banerjee will be the candidate for Nandigram in that list. Sources said that she is going to submit the nomination after 12 noon. Besides, she is going to hold a meeting and road show in Nandigram in the next few days. Mamata Banerjee had expressed her desire to stand for election from a public 37 pc of Bengal's sitting MLAs have criminal cases against them: Study KOLKATA: Thirty-seven per cent of the sitting MLAs in West Bengal - 104 out of the 282 – have criminal cases against them, according to a study jointly conducted by the West Bengal Election Watch and the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR). In a report released on Wednesday, the civil society organisations said that 90 (32 per cent) of the sitting legislators in the state assembly have declared having serious criminal cases against them. "Serious criminal cases" are non-bailable offences that entail punishment for more than five years, a spokesperson of the West Bengal Election Watch (WBEW) said. The WBEW along with the ADR has analysed the criminal background, financial, education, gender and other details of sitting MLAs based on their self-sworn affidavits and found that 61 of the 205 Trinamool Congress MLAs and 15 of the 39 legislators of the Congress have serious criminal cases against them. Ten of the 24 CPI(M) MLAs, three of the BJP's six legislators and one THE CPI(M) AND THE BJP HAVE TWO CROREPATI MLAS EACH AND OF THE TWO OTHER SUCH LEGISLATORS, ONE BELONGS TO THE REVOLUTIONARY SOCIALIST PARTY AND ONE IS INDEPENDENT. Independent MLA also have serious criminal cases against them. Seven MLAs have cases related to murder against them, 24 have been booked in attempt to murder cases while cases related to crime against women have been lodged against 10 MLAs, according to the "Analysis of criminal background, financial, education, gender and other details of 282 MLAs out of the 294 sitting MLAs". Ten seats are vacant in the current Assembly, while analysis of the affidavits of two MLAs could not be done as they were "unclear", the report said. There are 97 'crorepati' MLAs. Of them, 78 belong to the ruling TMC and 13 are from the Congress, it said. The CPI(M) and the BJP have two crorepati MLAs each and of the two other such legislators, one belongs to the Revolutionary Socialist Party and one is Independent. The survey also found that 92 MLAs have educational qualification between 8th standard pass and 12th standard pass while 187 are graduates and above. While two MLAs are diploma holders, one is just literate, it stated. There are 41 women MLAs (15 per cent of the total strength) in the assembly, while 185 (66 per cent) are aged between 51 and 80 years. The analysis has been done on the basis of the affidavits submitted by candidates prior to the 2016 assembly elections and byelections conducted after that. The next assembly election will be held in eight phases between March 27 and April 29. meeting at the Tekhali ground in Nandigram of East Midnapore on January 18. For the last few days, party activists have already started wall-writing in Nandigram with Mamata Bandopadhyay's name. Local grassroots leaders and activists have started door-todoor campaigning. Meetings and processions are going on. Suvendu Adhikari got a seat in the Mamata Banerjee Cabinet after winning the last Assembly election as a MLA from Nandigram. A few weeks ago, he left the Ministry and the MLA post and joined the BJP. On the same day that Mamata Banerjee announced her name for the Nandigram constituency, BJP leader and former Nandigram MLA Suvendu Adhikari said she would lose the Trinamool Supremo by half a lakh votes. Suvendu claims that Mamata is contesting for 72,000 minority votes. “We will get all the remaining votes. The Trinamool Congress wants to take advantage of the communal polarization that has erupted before the polls,” he said. BJP finalizing candidate list for 60 seats KOLKATA: West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh on Wednesday said that the party's State unit has shortlisted on an average of 4-5 names per seat for the 60 seats for the initial two phases of polling in the State. The list of candidates for those phases will be finalised after a meeting with the party's Central Election Committee (CEC) that makes the decision of who will contest from which constituency. Polling will be held in 30 seats each on March 27 and April 1. One of the constituencies going to polls in the second phase is Nandigram from where Trinamool Congress supremo and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is scheduled to contest. "We have received 120140 names from our district units for the first two phases. In addition to that, there are hundreds of other names. We had 20-25 names for each seat and from that, we have shortlisted around 4-5 names per seat. There will be some more omission and after that, it is for the party leadership to decide," Ghosh said. "This reflects that people from various walks of life are very eager to join us," he told reporters. Elections in Bengal, poised to be a tough contest between the TMC and Apart from the 19 TMC MLAs, including former ministers Rajib Banerjee and Suvendu Adhikari who are most likely to get tickets from their old constituencies, the saffron camp is also expected to nominate several personalities from the Bengali film industry. the BJP, will be held in eight phases between March 27 and April 29. Votes will be counted on May 2. According to State BJP sources, the party has decided to field many young faces and professionals during its recent two-day core committee meeting. Apart from the 19 TMC MLAs, including former ministers Rajib Banerjee and Suvendu Adhikari who are most likely to get tickets from their old constituencies, the saffron camp is also expected to nominate several personalities from the Bengali film industry. Ghosh's name is also doing the rounds for the Kharagpur Sadar seat which he had won in 2016 before resigning in 2019 after getting elected to the Lok Sabha, and Gopiballupur seat, the sources said. The BJP later lost the Kharagpur Sadar seat to the TMC during a by-poll. The party, however, is in two minds on whether to field Adhikari from the Nandigram seat or not. He was the MLA of this seat before resigning and joining the saffron party in December last year. After having a limited presence in the politically polarised State for decades, the BJP has emerged as the ruling TMCs main rival by winning 18 of the 42 Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal in the 2019 general elections. With the BJP's strength increasing in the State in the last few years, its leaders are upbeat that the party will end Mamata Banerjee's 10-year rule in the Assembly polls. No new tax, pension for all in Hemant’s budget Education and rural development get one third of budget funds SANJAY SAHAY RANCHI: Finance minister Rameshwar Oraon on Wednesday presented a Rs 91,277 crore budget for the financial year 2021-22 comprising a series of welfare measures without imposing additional taxes on the people. The budget estimates a revenue expenditure of Rs 75,755.01 crore and capital expenditure of Rs 15,521.99 crore. A sum of Rs 26,734.05 crore has been allocated for general sector, Rs 33,635.72 crore for social sector and Rs 30,917.23 for the industrial sector. The budget deficit is expected to be 2.83 of the GSDP. The highest allocation has been made to education (14.52 percent), followed by rural development (14.16 percent) health and drinking water (8.55 percent), police and disaster management (8.33 percent) and agriculture and allied activities (6.28 percent). The government is hoping to collect Rs 23,265.42 crore from its own taxes, Rs 13,500 crore from non tax revenue, Rs 17,891.48 crore as central assistance, Rs 22,050 crore as share of the taxes from centre, Rs 14,500 crore from public debt and Rs 70 crore from loans and advances. A sum of Rs 18, 653 crore has been allocated for agriculture which is 11 percent higher than the previous year. The Government has allocat- ed a fund of Rs 1200 crore for waiver of the agriculture loans. The budget aims to develop Birsa gram in each district and kisan service centre in each block. The service centre is meant to provide training to farmers. The government would form Jharkhand State Horticulture Promotion Society for supervision and evaluation of the horticulture and the floriculture departments. It proposes formation of a Chambers of Commerce for ensuring coordination between the farmers and the traders in order to promote micro agriculture products. The Government aims to produce 80 lakh liters of milk and 2,65,000 metric tonnes of fish in 2021-22. The budget proposes to renovate 12 irrigation canals, construct 213 ponds in the state and set up solar operated deep bore wells in each block. An underground water pipeline would be set up in Dumka area of Santhal Pargana. The budget envisages to cover 30 percent of the rural household under functional tap scheme. The Government aims to develop kitchen gardens in 5000 places in the urban areas for improving environment and increase production of vegetables. The Government proposes to establish gau muktidham in each commissionary for disposal of the dead cows. A chick breeding centre would be opened in Khunti. ‘Break language barrier, integrate global with local’ INDIA'S FEB SERVICES SECTOR OUTPUT RISES NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday focussed on the need to integrate the global with the local to make India self-reliant and work on a "mission mode" to break the barrier of language which is restricting knowledge. Discussing the steps taken in this year's Budget for the education sector through video conferencing, the Prime Minister said there is no shortage of talent in the country, but we need to learn skill management as these talents are spread all across the country be it a village or small town. "For 'Aatmanirbhar Bharat' (self-reliant India), there is need to focus on integration of global with local for which we should work on a mission mode to break language barrier," Modi said during the event. The Bharatiya Janata Covaxin demonstrates interim clinical efficacy of 81% NEW DELHI, March 3 (IANS) Healthy rise in new orders accelerated India's services sector output growth in February. Moreover, the roll out of the Covid-19 vaccine led to an improvement in business confidence towards growth prospects. However, employment declined for the third month in a row and companies noted the sharpest rise in overall expenses for eight years. Consequently, rising from 52.8 in January to 55.3 in February, the seasonally adjusted India Services Business Activity Index pointed to the sharpest rate of expansion in output in one year. HYDERABAD: Bharat Biotech on Wednesday announced the first interim analysis of Covaxin, which shows the efficacy of the Covid-19 vaccine to be at 81 per cent. The Hyderabadbased vaccine maker said whole virion inactivated Covid-19 vaccine candidate demonstrated an interim vaccine efficacy of 81 per cent in its Phase 3 clinical trial. The trials involved 25,800 subjects, the largest ever conducted in India, in partnership with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). "Today is an important milestone in vaccine discovery, for science and our fight against coronavirus. With today's results from our Phase 3 clinical trials, we have now reported data on our Covid-19 vaccine from Phase 1, 2, and 3 trials involving around 27,000 partici- THERE ARE LOTS OF TALENT IN VILLAGES AND SMALL TOWNS. RESTRICTING KNOWLEDGE, RESEARCH, IS A GREAT INJUSTICE TO THE COUNTRY'S POTENTIAL Party (BJP) veteran said that talents are not limited to any particular area and its injus- tice with them as wel as with the country to restrict these talents due to language barrier. "There are lots of talent in villages and small towns. Restricting knowledge, research, is a great injustice to the country's potential." With this thinking, Modi said, be it space, atomic energy, DRDO, agriculture, doors of many such sectors are being opened for talented youth. The Prime Minister further said that new National Education Policy has given an incentive to use more and more local language. "Now it is the responsibility of all the academics, experts of every language, how the best content of the country and the world should be prepared in Indian languages. This is completely possible in this era of technology." THE TRIALS INVOLVED 25,800 SUBJECTS, THE LARGEST EVER CONDUCTED IN INDIA, IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE INDIAN COUNCIL OF MEDICAL RESEARCH (ICMR). pants. Covaxin demonstrates high clinical efficacy trend against Covid-19 but also significant immunogenicity against the rapidly emerging variants," said Dr. Krishna Ella, Chairman and Managing Director, Bharat Biotech. BBV152 (Covaxin) contains a whole virion inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, which is produced in Vero cells. It is stable at 2 to 8oC (refrigerated) and is shipped in a ready-to-use liquid formulation that permits distribution using existing vaccine supply chain channels. BBV152 has a 28-day open vial policy as a unique product characteristic, thus reducing vaccine wastage by approximately 10-30 per cent, the vaccine maker said. BBV152 is based on an established manufacturing platform with a better safety profile when compared to other vaccine platforms. The inclusion of the Algel-IMDG adjuvant enhances T-cell immune responses to Covid19, leading to long-term protection. "I want to thank every one of the participants, who volunteered to participate in this vital clinical trial, our partners, principal investigators across 25 study sites, and our team at Bharat Biotech who dedicated their time to this vaccine discovery," said Suchitra Ella, Joint Managing Director, Bharat Biotech.