YK MYK PEOPLE’S EXPECTATIONS FROM CJI-DESIGNATE JUSTICE NV RAMANA TRAILER OF 'RADHE: YOUR MOST WANTED BHAI' LAUNCHED OPINION SCREEN & CINEMA Morning India Rs. 3 KOLKATA FRIDAY, 23 APRIL, 2021 PG-12, YEAR— 7, ISSUE—335 (RNI NO: WBENG / 2014 / 56803) WEATHER TODAY Over 79 pc turnout in phase VI MAX 37 C MIN 26 C Sky will be partly cloudy. AT A GLANCE PHASE 3 COVID VACCINATION REGISTRATION TO START FROM APR 28 NEW DELHI: The Union government on Thursday said that the registration for the third phase of Covid vaccination for everyone above 18 years of age will start on April 28. The registration will start on the CoWIN platform and Aarogya Setu App. There will be no walk-in allowed for beneficiaries in the third phase. AT LEAST 100 SIKH DEVOTEES RETURNING FROM PAK TEST POSITIVE CHANDIGARH: At least 100 Sikh devotees mainly from Punjab, who returned from Pakistan after visiting several shrines on the occasion of Baisakhi, on Thursday tested positive for coronavirus on their return to India through the Wagah border near Amritsar, officials said. NOR’WESTER WREAKS HAVOC IN SILIGURI SILIGURI: A Nor'wester packing a wind speed of 120 km per hour lashed Siliguri and its neighbouring towns in North Bengal on Thursday morning, officials said. The squall, known as 'Kalbaisakhi' in local parlance, uprooted several trees that disrupted power supply and blocked important roads, they said. CORONA METER INDIA TOTAL CASES: 1,59,65,373 TOTAL DEATH: 1,84,804 WORLD TOTAL CASES: 144,611,669 TOTAL DEATH: 3,075,198 Need to work rapidly to increase production of oxygen, speed of distribution: PM Modi NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday chaired a high-level meeting to review the oxygen supply across the country and discuss ways and means to boost its availability. He spoke about the need to work rapidly on multiple aspects - increasing production of oxygen, increasing the speed of distribution and using innovative ways to provide oxygen support to health facilities. The officials briefed the Prime Minister on the efforts undertaken in the last few weeks to improve the supply of oxygen. There has been an increase in demand of oxygen due to a surge in COVID-19 cases in the country in the second wave of pandemic. According to an official release, the Prime Minister was informed that an elaborate exercise is being done in co-ordination with the states to identify their demand for oxygen and ensure adequate supply accordingly. He was briefed on how oxygen supply to states is steadily increasing. Against the present demand from 20 states of 6,785 MT per day of Liquid Medical Oxygen, the Centre has allocated 6,822 MT/ day to these states from April 21. It was noted that in the last few days, availability of Liquid Medical Oxygen (LMO) has been increased by about 3,300 MT per day with contributions from private and public steel plants, industries, oxygen manufacturers as well as through prohibition of supply of oxygen for non-essential industries. Officers informed the Prime Minister that they are working together with the states to operationalize the sanctioned PSA oxygen plants as soon as possible. PM Modi asked the officials to ensure that oxygen supply to various states happens in a smooth, unhindered manner. He spoke about the need to fix responsibility with the local administration in cases of obstruction. He also asked ministries to explore various innovative ways to increase production and supply of oxygen. The release said that various measures are being undertaken to rapidly increase the availability of cyrogenic tankers through conversion of nitrogen and argon tankers, import and airlifting of tankers as well as manufacturing them. MORE ON INSIDE PG People stand in a queue at a polling station to cast their vote during the sixth phase of Bengal Assembly elections at Barrackpore constituency in North 24-Parganas on Thursday. MI NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI: The sixth phase of the Bengal Assembly elections held on Thursday for 43 seats recorded a voter turnout of 79.09 per cent till 5 pm, the Election Commission (EC) said. A total of 7,466 out of the 14,480 polling stations across the constituencies were monitored live through webcasting, even as drones were used to keep a watch over the vote proceedings, the EC said in a statement. During the ongoing elections in Bengal, a record seizure of Rs 316.47 crore has already been reported till Thursday. It includes seizure of cash, liquor, narcotics, freebies, and it is over seven times the total seizure of Rs 44.33 crore made in the 2016 Assembly polls, the state- ment said. A total of 14,480 Ballot Units (BUs), and as many Control Units (CUs) and VVPATs were used during this phase. "Non-functioning rate of EVMs and VVPATs during the poll is comparable to what was experienced in the last few elections," the statement said. A CU, at least one BU and a VVPAT makes for one EVM. PM cancels Bengal visit Standees of PM Narendra Modi were installed at Shahid Minar Maidan on Thursday. However, after the cancellation of his visit the standees were taken down. Pic Prabir Bhattacharya MI NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI/KOLKATA: Expressing concerned at the continuous increase in Covid cases in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday announced cancellation of his visit to West Bengal on Friday for a string of rallies. "Tomorrow, I will be chairing high-level meetings to review the prevailing Covid-19 situation. Due to that, I would not be going to West Bengal," the Prime Minister said, in a tweet. As per party sources, Prime Minister Modi was supposed to address four rallies in Bengal on Friday. "As per the original schedule, two of these rallies were planned at Malda and Murshidabad on April 22 and the other two rallies scheduled in Bolpur and Kolkata on April 24. Concerned with the prevailing Covid situation, all four rallies by Modiji were rescheduled on April 23. Now, as per the Prime Minister's tweet, he is not coming to Bengal on Friday," a Bengal BJP leader said. On Monday, the BJP had decided not to hold big rallies in Bengal and announced that it would instead hold small public meetings of not more than 500 people to be addressed by Prime Minister Modi and senior Central leaders. In a statement, the BJP had said that all these small public meetings will be organised in open spaces following Covid protocols. SC takes Suo Motu cognizance of Covid situation, issues notice to Centre NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Thursday took suo motu cognizance of the "alarming situation" in connection with various health emergencies including oxygen shortage, during the COVID-19 pandemic, and issued notice to the Centre seeking a response on kinds of immediate and effective action it can take to handle such situation. A three-judge bench of the Apex Court, headed by the Chief Justice of India (CJI) Sharad Arvind Bobde and also comprising Justice L Nageswara Rao and Justice S Ravindra Bhat, took suo motu cognizance Keeping in view the of the deficiency of present prevalent sitoxygen, medicines, uation, due to the improper treatment pandemic, the top and other related court felt the necessiissues of COVID ty of a National plan patients. "We take on supply of oxygen, suo motu cognisance", the CJI Bobde essential medicines, injections and vacsaid and observed that the "current situ- cines, and issued notice to the Union of ation is alarming." India and posted the Keeping in view the present prevalent matter for further hearing on Friday. situation, due to the pandemic, the top court felt the necessity of a National plan on supply of oxygen, essential medicines, injections and vaccines, and issued notice to the Union of India (UOI) and posted the matter for further hearing on Friday (tomorrow). The Court asked the Centre to present and apprise it as to whether a national plan can be prepared to handle this worrisome situation. It made these remarks, after noting and taking into record at least six different state High Courts have been hearing the matter on the same issues. Modi mentioned 2018 Asansol riots in speech to provoke voters: Mamata MI NEWS SERVICE ASANSOL/TAPAN/RATUA: Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday alleged that Prime Minister Narendra Modi reminded people of 2018 Asansol riots during his rally last week to "provoke" voters amid the ongoing elections, and asserted that it was "unbecoming" of someone of his stature. The TMC supremo, who addressed three rallies during the day, said it was a "matter of shame" that the PM, with his "provocative" remarks, tried to influence people. "You, members of different communities, are living in harmony. The other day, however, the prime minister visited Asansol and made many objectionable comments... he brought up the issue of riots and made provocative statements. This doesn't befit a PM, or a Home Minister," she said. Modi, during his address, had referred to the Asansol riots in 2018 on the occasion of Ram Navami, and indirectly blamed the TMC dispensation for the violence. Reminiscing that an imam of a local mosque, who lost his son in the riots, had said he didn't want any more bloodshed or death, the TMC supremo said, "The imam's words stand in contrast to what our PM says. "Even as people of different communities live here in peace, the PM rakes up the issue of riots." Claiming that she "has come to know that a photo of poet Kazi Nazrul Islam was removed from the podium, minutes before the PM began his public meeting in Asansol", the CM said the media should be able to verify the same. "Kavi Nazrul Islam is the national poet of Bangladesh but he was born in Bengal, in Churulia village. We have Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addresses a public meeting at Habibpur in Malda on Thursday. named a university and the Andal airport after him. He is our pride," she stated. Earlier in the day, Banerjee, during her rally in Tapan area of Dakshin Dinajpur district, slammed the BJP-led Centre over differential pricing of COVID-19 vaccines, and said that the Union Government, flush with money collected under PM Cares Fund, should provide vaccines for free. Pointing out that Covishield is priced at Rs 150 for the Centre, Rs 400 for States and Rs 600 for private hospitals, the TMC supremo said, "Is it a joke? Why is that one vaccine being sold at different rates? Vaccines should not be commercialised. "The Centre has a lot of money in PM Cares Fund but it wouldn't provide vaccines free of cost. Why couldn't they (central leaders) do the needful all these months?" Alleging that "this COVID19 rage was Modi's contribution" to the country, she said, "So far, you (PM) have done nothing, you did not alert people or take necessary precautions when there was time. Now, amid the rise in cases, you are asking people to buy doses and get vaccinated!" Citing Israel, where masks are no longer mandatory, as an example, Banerjee said, "What happened in India? Until recently, the Modi government did not allow States to undertake the vaccination drive on their own, and that has only led to a delay in the process." Underscoring that the TMC Government has administered 43 lakh doses, she said, "As of now, we are inoculating 40,000-50,000 people every day. The State has sought one crore more shots." She gave assurance that her party, following re-election, will administer vaccines for free to all residents of the State over 18 years of age. Banerjee also rued the fact that people are suffering due to shortage of medical oxygen, and said, "The PM held several meetings with the Chief Ministers. However, no master plan was prepared to ensure smooth supply of oxygen in the midst of this crisis." Contending that the BJP's "game plan to capture Bengal" will never succeed, the TMC boss said, "You (saffron party leaders) can rig one or two booths with the help of Central forces, but not all." Claiming that she has information that the Central forces opened fire "at Ashoknagar in North 24Parganas district", when polling for the sixth phase of elections was underway, Banerjee said, "Such instances of firing, and deliberate lathicharge on voters should immediately stop." She further stated that the High Court has rightly told the Election Commission to take appropriate measures to conduct polls amid the COVID-19 surge. "The EC did not keep our request to club the last three phases of polls into one but instead curtailed campaign time from 10 am to 7 pm. The poll panel has also changed SPs and DMs to aid the saffron party. No matter what they do, the BJP will lose," the feisty leader said. In Ratua area of Malda, she iterated that the Left, Congress and the ISF, which together have formed the Sanjukta Morcha, are "stooges" of the BJP. "You may have earlier voted for the Congress or the Left. Now, they have formed the Sanjukta Morcha. All of them are stooges of the BJP. Please vote for the Trinamool Congress to prevent the BJP from seizing power." Banerjee asked the Central security forces to perform 'Rajdharma' and not intimidate voters. SUSTAINABLE TRAVEL CELEBRATED ON #WORLDEARTHDAY NEW DELHI: Each year 22nd April or Earth Day as we know it, brings with it a reminder to do better for our planet and take responsibility for a greener and better future. With an increased consciousness towards our home, our planet thanks to pandemic, this 51st Earth Day comes with the opportunity for us to think about the choices we make which can help make the planet a better place to live. As per a recent YouGov report by Airbnb, an overwhelming 94 percent of Indians look at sustainable and responsible travel when they do leave their homes in 2021, with millennials and Gen Z fuelling this trend. For those of looking to make a difference through daily routines, a little goes a long way when it comes to planet Earth. In fact, one of the most monumental ways in which individuals can make a difference is by adopting sustainable practices in their own homes. So, if you're looking for simple tips to make your home greener, these easy guidelines from expert Airbnb hosts are sure to inspire you. Shop local and use local. While designing and getting his quaint and charming farmstay ready, Airbnb Host Honey, who hosts The Owl's Nest in Dharamshala, made a special effort to use as much local material as possible, with very few exceptions. The minimized need for transportation helped keep the environmental impact to a bare minimum without compromising on the aesthetics or the modern comforts which we've grown used to. Similarly, Airbnb Host, Sanjay, swears by local products. While designing his farm stay, Meena Bagh Ratnari in the gorgeous locales of Himachal Pradesh, he decided to use local products as much as possible. A lot of the furniture has been designed using locally sourced 'waste' wood. This discarded wood was picked up from the wood-mills and is also known as reclaimed wood. While adding to the rustic look and feel of the home, reclaimed wood adds a certain warmth to the ambiance. Nestled in the lap of nature, Meena Bagh Ratnari is the perfect place for those who prefer luxury in serenity, surrounded by nature, tranquillity and farm animals. MEENA BAGH RATNARI. AN APPLE ORCHARD FARMSTAY. GO SUSTAINABLE FROM THE GROUND UP IF POSSIBLE? When talking about the need to adopt a sustainable lifestyle, Honey said, "For me, the transformation into a sustainable being living a sustainable lifestyle had to be more than refusing plastic straws at fancy vegan eateries or refusing plastic bags at overpriced organic produce stores. It had to be 'Real' with visible positive impact and 'Local' enough to bring about a change, however small and however slow, in my community." Which is why it is important that if you are building a new home, sustainable practices need to be a part of the plan from the very beginning. Airbnb Host Rupam, who hosts La Belle Vie Naukuchiatal in Nainital has used stone from the surroundings to build walls of the home which adds to the natural aesthetics of the home. Water harvesting and solar energy are also something that can be included at the time of planning itself. This not only saves the bills but is also a great way to contribute to nature. Joe, who hosts Striking Penthouse With Private Plunge Pool in Goa, recommends adopting upcycling practices during construction as well to create very little wastage. LA BELLE VIE NAUKUCHIATAL REUSE, RECYCLE, REDUCE! Both Joe and Sanjay believe in garbage segregation as a small yet crucial step towards sustainable living. Sanjay encourages composting as well and has specially dedicated composting bays where guests are educated on the benefit and ease of composting.? Each of us can make a huge difference in contributing to the planet, through our daily practices, which is why Rupam encourages guests to reduce waste, save electricity and water as much as possible. One can even choose to be sustainable while doing the interiors of their home. Honey has reused and upcycled a majority of the furniture, fixtures, doors and windows at his beautiful home.