YK MYK SALARIED CLASS LOSING JOBS FASTER THAN EXPECTED THIS YEAR TAMIL ACTOR VIVEK PASSES AWAY AFTER HEART ATTACK OPINION SCREEN & CINEMA Morning India Rs. 5 RANCHI SUNDAY, 18 APRIL, 2021 PG-12, YEAR—10, ISSUE—341 (RNI NO: JHAENG / 2012 / 44137) Medical kits for Covid patients in home isolation, says CM MI NEWS SERVICE RANCHI: Chief Minister Hemant Soren chaired a high-level meeting to review the rising Covid-19 situation in the state and preparations made for its prevention at his official residence. The Chief Minister directed to provide medical kits to the Corona -infected patients living in home isolation. He said that all the necessary medicines, oximeters and masks etc. should be included in the medical kit. The Chief Minister said that arrangement of pulse oximeter should be ensured in all Anganwadi centres in the state. He directed the Health Secretary to appoint trained youths of the state who have done para-medical courses on a contractual basis to overcome the shortage of medical staff in hospitals as per requirements. WEATHER TODAY MAX 34 C MIN 22 C JUNA AKHARA, OTHER SECTS END KUMBH PILGRIMAGE NEW DELHI: Following Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call to observe the ongoing 'Kumbh Mela' in a "symbolic" way, the 'Juna Akhara' on Saturday concluded the annual event from its side ensuring that other saints linked to different Akharas also agree to end the holy pilgrimage. PG 5 CORONA METER INDIA TOTAL CASES: 1,46,07,283 TOTAL DEATH: 1,75,973 WORLD ICUs in the hospitals. The Chief Minister directed that the hospital management should work by preparing a better action plan for the treatment of Corona infected patients. Ensure the arrangement of Oxygen Plant and Air Separation Units in the CM SOS TO PM MODI FOR USING SERVICES FROM MILITARY HOSPITALS RANCHI: Chief Minister (CM) Hemant Soren has requested the Prime Minister to allow the state to use doctors and the paramedics of para-military forces deployed in the state. In a letter to the PM, Soren said there are military hospitals located in Ranchi and Jharkhand, adding their contingent doctors and para-medical staff could be of immense help to the state under the prevailing situation. The CM requested the PM to ask the ministry of home and the defence to issue instructions for allowing the state govern- ment to use their infrastructure and manpower. He said that Jharkhand being an extremist affected state has a large number of para-military forces deployed here. Each company of the para-military is manned by a team of doctors and para-medical staffs. The CM said, “During the second wave we were expecting it to be less virulent due to vaccination and herd immunity. The virus has surprised us by becoming more virulent. However, the average number of cases which were around 100 till March 18 is now over 3000 every day.” He stated that during the first wave more than 90 percent of the cases were asymptomatic and the number of people who needed oxygen support was not very high. He said that Jharkhand being a landlocked state shares boundary with Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, Odisha and Chhatisgarh adding the interstate movement of people has also accentuated the problem. The CM said, “We are trying to fight this pandemic with whatever medical infrastructure and resources that are available in this backward state.” HC grants bail to Lalu Prasad in fodder scam case RS 500 FINE FOR NOT WEARING FACE MASKS IN RAIL PREMISES, TRAINS MI NEWS SERVICE Sky will be partly cloudy. AT A GLANCE The Chief Minister said that to overcome the shortage of medical staff in dedicated hospitals, Covid care centres etc., in the districts, make an action plan and appoint manpower. He said that every possible effort should be made to increase oxygen-rich beds and hospitals. The Chief Minister asked the officials to constantly strive for the availability of Remdesivir. The Chief Minister said that the number of Corona infected patients are increasing day by day. The Corona patients and the Corona containment zones should be closely monitored. He said that full preparation should be done in order to ensure that the Corona infected patients do not face any problems. In the meeting, the Health Secretary apprised the Chief Minister about the current status of Corona infected patients, preparation for its treatment and the action plans prepared by the department. On the occasion, Chief Secretary Sukhdev Singh, Development Commissioner Arun Kumar Singh were present. RANCHI: The Jharkhand High Court on Saturday granted bail to RJD supremo Lalu Prasad in the Dumka fodder scam case. With it, the path for release of the RJD leader has been paved. Justice Aparesh Kumar Singh allowed the bail while asking Lalu to furnish two sureties of one lakh each and also pay half of the fine imposed on him under IPC and the Prevention of Corruption Act respectively. Notably, Lalu had approached the court for bail with the plea that he has completed half of the sentence, which is 42 months, in the case. CBI lawyer Rajiv Sinha opposed the petition on the grounds that the court had awarded the punishment of seven years each under the IPC and the PC Act, adding that the terms were to run consequently. He said that under the situation the half-term be calculated on 14 years and not seven years. Sources said that the CBI is likely to move the Supreme Court against the HC order. The CBI is of view that as per law that Lalu who is convicted under several fodder scam cases has to serve each TOTAL CASES: 140,675,357 TOTAL DEATH: 3,015,246 of the terms separately. Senior lawyer Kapil Sibal argued the case of Lalu online. The court had in February rejected the bail plea of Lalu saying that he has not completed the half term. Meanwhile, RJD leaders expressed happiness over the decision. Office bearer Irfan Ansari said that his prayers during holy Ramadan month has bore fruit. Ansari said that he would celebrate Eid with festivity this season. Working president of Congress Rajesh Thakur has also welcomed the decision. It may be stated here that a fodder scam case related to illegal withdrawal from the Doranda treasury is also under trial in the special CBI court. FISCAL PACKAGE MAY BE ON CARDS TO MAINTAIN ECONOMIC RECOVERY AMID COVID 2.0 NEW DELHI: A fiscal stimulus package may be on the cards again as the government looks at ways to prevent the present surge in Covid-19 cases and the ensuing restrictions imposed by the states from derailing the economic recovery. After last year's lockdowns, which resulted in the country's GDP contracting by (-) 23.9 per cent, it was hoped that the economy will grow handsomely in FY22 to register a double digit growth. For this to happen, the RBI has projected a Q1 FY22 GDP growth of 26.2 per cent. But the recent surge in the pandemic has again raised serious questions about the health of the economy. There are some discussions within the government about the need, shape and timing of a fresh fiscal stimulus package. BUSINESS Queen Elizabeth II sits and watches as pallbearers carry the coffin of the Duke of Edinburgh during his funeral at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle in London on Saturday. BENGAL ASSEMBLY POLLS Huge turnout in largely peaceful fifth phase polling KOLKATA: Though there were some stray incidents but the state recorded huge polling in the fifth phase of the election. The final figures are yet to come but the voters' turnout recorded by the commission shows that there was 78.36 percent polling till 5 p.m. on Saturday evening. According to the data released by the commission, Jalpaiguri registered the highest voting percentage of 81.73 percent followed by East Burdwan with 81.72 percent. Nadia witnessed 81.57 percent voting while North 24 Parganas and Darjeeling had 74.83 and 74.32 percent voting respectively. Kalimpong recorded the lowest turnout with 69.56 percent. TMC MP Mimi Chakraborty after casting her vote in Jalpaiguri on Saturday. ANI There were altogether 319 candidates from different political parties in the fifth phase of polls that was conducted in 45 constituencies including 7 in Jalpaiguri, 5 in Darjeeling, 1 in Kalimpong, 8 in Nadia, 16 in North 24 Parganas and 8 in East Burdwan. Though overall the voting was peaceful all over the state, there were some sporadic incidents including the arrest of an Independent candidate of Chakdah AC in Nadia district for having a firearm in his possession. "Koushik Bhowmick, the candidate was found going around a polling booth at Baliadanga, Daspara area with a country made gun tucked in his trousers. He dropped the firearm when the central forces intercepted him after the local people raised a hue and cry," CEO Ariz Aftab told the media after the election. Incidentally a booth agent of the BJP Abhijit Samanta died after falling sick at a polling station in Kamarhati, North 24 Parganas district. He was rushed to a local hospital where he was declared brought dead. How an India, Iran and Russia alliance can save Afghanistan NEW DELHI: Tired and broken, the United States has announced its unceremonious exit from Afghanistan. The decision, in many ways, is a throwback to a similar moment in recent history— the pullback of the Soviet forces from the strife torn nation after Moscows ill-fated intervention in Afghanistan in 1979. The Soviet Union was then a superpower, although ailing, when it decided to move forces across the Hai ratan bridge now in Uzbekistan, only to face defeat in a country which has been well described as the "graveyard of empires". After President Joe Biden's announcement of pulling out of Afghanistan by September 11, the US forces would be scurrying back to the mainland, without achieving most of their mission objectives as announced after the collapse of the twin towers in 2001. After the 9/11 terror attacks, the US had ousted Afghanistan's Taliban rulers, who were fully backed by Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence. During their rule, the Taliban had sheltered the worst of the international terror groups in Afghanistan, headed by Al Qaeda. But after 20 years of western intervention, and after copious drain of blood and treasure, the Taliban are back, now lying-in wait to make a full-fledged comeback in the badlands of the AfPak. And over the years, the Taliban have not severed their links with Al Qaeda and ISIS and ISKP, AQIS and the Haqqani Network. With the exit of the western forces, regional powers in Afghanistan's periphery are set to fill the vacuum left behind by the vanquished western nations. Acknowledging defeat, US President Joe Biden has personally pleaded for the regional countries to script Afghanistan's post-withdrawal future. "We'll ask other countries, other countries in the region, to do more to support Afghanistan, especially Pakistan, as well as Russia, China, India, and Turkey. They all have a significant stake in the stable future for Afghanistan," Biden said in his major speech announcing the closure of another infamous chapter in Afghanistan. As regional powers realign ahead of the departure of western forces, what are India's options that would enable New Delhi to protect its core interests? Despite the overhang of regional powers over Afghanistan, it is important to note that there are significant fault lines among the local powers that will be in play once the Americans leave. Among the regional powers, a new power cluster comprising China-Pakistan-Turkey is emerging which is working closely to exercise dominance inside Afghanistan. As reported earlier by India Narrative, it is in Afghanistan that interests of Turkey, Pakistan, and China strongly converge. For Turkey, an entrenchment in Afghanistan will turn Kabul into a springboard for forays into broader Central Asia -- a resource rich region with which Ankara shares deep seated cultural and linguistic ties. For Pakistan, Turkey's assistance is badly needed to reacquire its "strategic depth" to counter India and Iran, and to seal a security threat from across the Durand Line. For China, tighter control will allow the extension of the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), to access Afghanistan's resources including lithium, the feedstock of Beijing's electric car revolution. It would also help prevent the seepage of Islamic extremists from Afghanistan into the Wakhan corridor, and help prevent the destabilisation of China's strategic Xinjiang region. As regional powers realign ahead of the departure of western forces, what are India's options that would enable New Delhi to protect its core interests? For starters, India has to quickly and fundamentally readjust its strategic prism and look afresh at Afghanistan and its neighbourhood. With the US virtually out of the equation, New Delhi has no option but to find a powerful niche within the ambit of divided regional powers. NEW DELHI: In view of the rising Covid cases across the country, Indian Railways on Saturday said that it will impose a fine of up to Rs 500 on the passengers for not wearing face masks in the railway premises or during the travel in trains, for a period of six months. In an letter to all the General Managers of Railway zones on Saturday, Executive Director of Passenger Marketing Neeraj Sharma said, "Indian Railways is taking various measures to contain the spread of the resurgence of Covid-19 pandemic, in accordance with the guidelines issued by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and Ministry of Home Affairs from time to time. One of the specific guideline is to wear masks in order to contain the spread of the pandemic." CENTRE DEVELOPING OXYGEN GENERATION PLANTS IN HOSPITALS NEW DELHI: Taking a serious note of the issue of shortage of medical oxygen in many states across the country amid surging COVID-19 cases, the Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan on Saturday said that the Centre has taken concrete steps to resolve the issue and situation will be normalised soon. The Union Minister chaired a high-level meeting with the Health Ministers of 11 states and UTs. JAC POSTPONES CLASS X-XII EXAMS RANCHI: Jharkhand Academic Council (JAC) has postponed the matriculation and the intermediate examinations, which were to be held from May 4. JAC secretary Mahip Singh said that the next direction on the issue would be issued on June 1 after a review. He said that minimum of 15 days would be given to the students to prepare for the examination. Around seven lakh students were expected to take the examination.