YK MYK SANITATION WORKERS STILL MANUALLY SCAVENGE TOILETS OPINION Rs. 3 KOLKATA WEDNESDAY, 24 MARCH, 2021 PG-12, YEAR—7, ISSUE—307 (RNI NO: WBENG / 2014 / 56803) WEATHER TODAY MAX 37 C MIN 25 C Sky will be partly cloudy. AT A GLANCE VIOLENCE, LATHICHARGE DURING RJD'S ASSEMBLY GHERAO IN PATNA PATNA: The opposition Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) on Tuesday created a ruckus in the state capital Patna during the Bihar Assembly gherao programme. Amid this RJD protest march, there was heavy stone pelting by the RJD workers forcing the police to use water cannons to disperse the protesters. Thousands of RJD supporters went on the rampage and damaged private and government property. RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav, who was leading the protest along with his elder brother Tej Pratap Yadav, was arrested at Patna's Dak Bungalow Chowk. The RJD had announced the siege of the Assembly on Tuesday to protest against rising unemployment, corruption, inflation and several other issues in Bihar. The local administration had denied permission to the RJD to lay siege to the Assembly. Despite this a large number of RJD workers gathered near Gandhi Maidan and started marching towards the Assembly. The protest march started from the Patna railway station and when Tejashwi Yadav and Tej Pratap reached Dak Bungalow Chowk, RJD workers turned violent. The police tried to stop these protesters by putting up barricades but they continued to create a ruckus. The protesters then broke through the barricades and marched ahead. During this time there was stone pelting by the RJD supporters at the Dak Bungalow. CORONA METER INDIA TOTAL CASES: 1,16,90,165 TOTAL DEATH: 160,219 WORLD TOTAL CASES: 124,421,055 CHINA SUMMONS EU OFFICIAL HEAD OVER SANCTIONS WORLD Morning India NEW DELHI: The government Tuesday announced that from April 1, all people above 45 years of age will be eligible to get COVID-19 vaccines and requested them to get registered for the inoculation. Briefing reporters on the decisions taken by the Cabinet after its meeting, Union minster Prakash Javadekar said now even people without comorbidities who are more that 45 years of age can get vaccinated. He requested people entitled to get themselves registered to take the jabs. He said the Cabinet also decided that the second dose of the vaccine can be taken between four and eight weeks, on the advice of doctors. It was allowed to be taken between four to six weeks earlier, but scientists have now said that taking the second dose between four and eight weeks gives improved results. The union cabinet discussed about the vaccination drive which has already achieved speedy and good progress, Javadekar said. "Today after discussion and on the advice of the task force and scientists, it was decided that from April 1 the vaccine will open for everybody above 45 years of age. "We request that all eligible people should immediate- MI NEWS SERVICE 4 SECURITY MEN KILLED, SEVERAL INJURED IN IED BLAST BY NAXALS IN CHHATTISGARH People wait for their turn to get the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a health centre, in New Delhi on Tuesday. ANI INSIDE TEST-TRACKTREAT': GOVT ISSUES FRESH COVID SOP GUIDELINES PAGE 5 ly register from April 1 and get vaccinated, as it is the shield against the disease," Javadekar told reporters. He said till this day, 4.85 crore vaccines have been administered for COVID-19 and more than 32 lakh people administered the vaccine in last 24 hours. ‘Will institute Tagore Prize on lines of Nobel Prize’ MI NEWS SERVICE SOUTH 24-PARGANAS: Ahead of Bengal Assembly polls, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday said the BJP will institute a “Tagore Prize” on the lines of Nobel Prize and a “Satyajit Ray Award” on the lines of Oscars. Announcing this on Tuesday, Shah said the decision was made to pay tributes to the two sons of Bengal. "We will be instituting Tagore Prize on the lines of Nobel Prize and Satyajit Ray Award on the lines of Oscars to pay tributes to the two sons of Bengal," Shah said while addressing a public gathering at Gosaba. Further, the Union Home Minister said that if voted to power, the BJP would consti- tute an inquiry committee to probe the alleged siphoning of relief funds by “Bhatija and company”. Shah alleged that Mamata's nephew Abhishek Banerjee, who he referred to as “Bhatija” and his associates, had swindled money sent by the Centre for Amphan relief and did not allow it to reach them. "Modiji had sent Rs 10,000 crore for Amphan relief. Did you see any of it? ‘Bhatija’ and his associates siphoned off all the funds," Shah alleged. "But you don't worry. Once we come to power, we will form SIT (Special Investigative Team) and probe all the discrepancies of these funds. None will be let off the hook," he said. Another decision taken, on the advice given by scientists and world scientist bodies, was that the second dose of vaccine can be administered between fourth and eighth week, particularly for Covishield, he said. "Our appeal is that all above 45 years should take vaccine as early as possible, that will provide them the shield against coronavirus and they should register for getting vaccinated," the minister said. Vaccines are available in enough number and there is no scarcity and the supply chains and supply line is intact, he said. NO COMPOUND INTEREST ON LOANS AVAILED DURING MORATORIUM: SC NEW DELHI: In a major relief to big borrowers, the Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that no penal or compound interest would be charged on any loans, including those above Rs 2 crore, during the six month moratorium announced by the government against the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic. A bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhushan, R. Subhash Reddy and M.R. Shah said: "It is directed that there shall not be any charge of interest on interest/compound interest/penal interest for the period during the moratorium and any amount already recovered under the same head, namely, interest on interest/penal interest/compound interest, shall be refunded to the concerned borrowers and to be given credit/adjusted in the next instalment of the loan account." MORE ON PG 5 TOTAL DEATH: 2,737,955 MARCH 24 IS WORLD TB DAY MASKS MUST BE MADE MANDATORY TO CONTROL TB, SAY EXPERTS HYDERABAD: Covid-19 pandemic and the measures taken to stop its spread indicate that transmission of infectious diseases can be prevented by using face masks, say experts. This simple yet most effective means is best suited to stop a deadly ailment like tuberculosis from spreading. Many healthcare experts are in favour of mandating or encouraging people to continue wearing of masks which could help in numerous ways beyond ending the current global healthcare crisis. March 24 is commem- Only PM’s ‘Factory of Lies’ will remain: Mamata Vaccine for all above 45 years from April 1: Govt orated as World Tuberculosis Day, and on this day, there is an imminent need to enhance awareness among the people about this ailment, say experts. India is home to more than 25 per cent of the global TB burden, and each year, more than 400,000 lives are lost in the country to this deadly ailment. The World Health Organisation reported that there are more than 10 million active TB cases in India. Tuberculosis is a social disease, caused due to overcrowding and malnutrition. This ailment disproportion- ately affects the financially marginalised sections of society, and the stigma associated with this disease lead to under-reporting and underdiagnosis. "India is among the most densely-populated nations in the world, and the physical proximity between people here leads to spread of certain infectious diseases, like the deadly tuberculosis. The onset of coronavirus and call to mask-up and maintain physical distance to prevent its spread was followed religiously in India, and this helped prevent the spread of virus to a great extent. The positive results from this suggest India is a disciplined nation, and its denizens can be encouraged to follow certain best practices to prevent spread of TB too," Dr Mohammad Nawaz S., Consultant Pulmonologist, KIMS Hospitals told IANS. NARAYANPUR: Three District Reserve Guard (DRG) jawans and one police personnel lost their lives in an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) blast by Naxals in Chhattisgarh's Narayanpur on Tuesday. Speaking to reporters, Inspector General of Bastar, P Sundarraj said, "Three District Reserve Guard (DRG) jawans and one police personnel have lost their lives in an IED blast by Naxals in Narayanpur. 14 security personnel injured including, two critical personnel." "We are looking into the matter, further probe is underway," he added. On March 14, one Naxal was killed in an explosion while planting an IED near Gayathapara in Chhattisgarh's Bijapur, along BechapalHurepal road. KOLKATA: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday targeted the BJP-led Central Government saying that it is selling off all assets to private hands. Addressing an election rally in the Purulia district, Banerjee also took a jibe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying his "factory of lies" will be the only thing that remains. She claimed that the Centre is planning to sell off the nationalised telecom firm and banks, national carrier Air India and staterun companies in other core sectors like defence production. "They (the BJP Government) are closing down all Central concerns. Only one factory will be there, that of Narendra Modi's lies and the BJP's fraud," Banerjee said. Banerjee said that the BJP is advertising tall claims about what it will do for the people of Bengal, but the party has reneged on promises made in its manifesto for the assembly elections in Assam and Tripura. Addressing an election rally in Purulia district, the West Bengal chief minister claimed that BJP governments in the two northeastern states have rendered thousands of government employees jobless. Reciting Mamata Banerjee at an election rally at Raghunathpur on Tuesday. ''Chandi slokas'' at the public meeting here as she has been doing in other poll rallies, the TMC chief asked people not to indulge in any communal politics. Urging people not to vote for "goons from outside", Ms Banerjee asserted that she is not afraid of any intimidation and will fight back if threatened. She has on several occasions accused the BJP of bringing in outsiders to the state for the assembly elections in West Bengal. The TMC chief further said that she will "not let go of an inch of land without a fight". "We will fight, 'khela hobe'," she said, adding she will "break, but not bend". She asked the TMC's women supporters to make use of their cooking utensils like ladles to throw out "outsider goons" from the state during the eight-phase elections. Since suffering the leg injury, she has been addressing public meetings sitting in a wheelchair. "The BJP was thinking that it injured Mamata and so she will not be able to go out. But it doesn't know me. I can play the game with just one leg and kick the ball out of the field," she said. "I will hit the ball with one leg in such a way that you (BJP) will vanish from Delhi too," the TMC supremo said. She also cautioned them not to accept food offered to them by BJP supporters and workers. "They may mix sedatives in the food to make you fall asleep and taking advantage of that, they may cast votes in their favour in EVMs," she said.