eye MCS/204/2020-22RNINO.MAHENG2002/21899 THE SUNDAY EXPRESS MAGAZINE The Flavour EQUATION MUMBAI,LATECITY MARCH7,2021 In a globalised world where no food feels foreign, how does the debate over authenticity in recipes play out? 16PAGES,`5.00 DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM FOCUS ON TESTING, TRACING KARNATAKA Surge in some states, Centre says step up vaccination After colleague quits over CD, six ministers get media gag order Say fear being defamed like Jarkiholi, court grants interim injunction EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE SURAT, MARCH 6 A CHIEF Judicial Magistrate court in Surat Saturday acquitted all the 127 accused booked under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in 2001 for participating in a meeting allegedly organised to promote the banned Students' Islamic Movement of India (SIMI), saying the evidence against them was "not reliable or satisfactory enough". Chief Judicial Magistrate Amitkumar Dave said the investigators had failed to prove the accused "were members of the banned outfit or that they had gathered there to give a push to the movement". "The court has found that the accused had gathered to attend (an) educational programme and had not carried any weapons. The prosecution has also not proved that the accused had gathered for any activity related to SIMI. Even during the raids not a single member out of 123 arrested from the spot tried to escape. Neither do the seized documents have any relevance with SIMI." Of the 127, 111 were present in court on Saturday. Seven are dead, five are in jail on other charges, while four are bedridden. Almost all of them spent 10 months to one year in jail, subsequently getting bail from the Gujarat High Court. The court also found that no valid sanctions had been submitted before court to prosecute the accused while filing the chargesheet in 2002, as required under the UAPA law. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 THE SIX KARNATAKA MINISTERS Barring KC Narayana Gowda who crossed over from JDS, the others switched to BJP from Cong. These are their portfolios: ■ K C Narayana Gowda, Youth Empowerment and Sports EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE BENGALURU, MARCH 6 A BENGALURU court Saturday granted a temporary media gag order in favour of six ministers of the BJP government in Karnataka after they expressed apprehension of being defamed, days after TV channels played a video CD allegedly featuring Water Resources Minister RameshJarkiholiandanunidentified young woman, leading to his resignation. The court of the 26th additional civil and sessions judge granted the temporary injunction on media broadcast of any CDorothermaterialthatislikely to defame the six ministers after theymovedcourtFriday,naming 68 media, social media outlets andasocialactivist,Rajashekhar Mulali, as respondents. Thesixministers--Shivaram Hebbar,BCPatil,STSomashekar, K Sudhakar, K C Narayana Gowda and Byrathi Basavaraj -- ■ Shivaram Hebbar, Labour ■ Dr K Sudhakar, Health ■ B C Patil, Agriculture ■ S T Somashekar, Cooperative ■ Byrathi Basavaraj, Urban Development E E X P L A I NE D 19 yrs after ‘SIMI link’ charge over Surat meet, 127 acquitted Crossed over, now ● cross THE SIX ministers and Jarkiholi were part of a group of 17 Congress and JDS MLAs — known as the Bombay Friends — who quit the Congress-JDS coalition in 2019 and defected to the BJP to help it come to power under Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa. They hold key positions, and this latest episode has shaken the BJP government. were part of a group of 17 CongressandJDSMLAswhoquit the Congress-JDS coalition in 2019 and defected to the BJP to help it come to power under the leadership of Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 63 dists in 6 states, 2 UTs of particular concern; 108 deaths in past 24 hours KAUNAIN SHERIFF M NEW DELHI, MARCH 6 Axar Patel and Virat Kohli celebrate the dismissal of Ben Stokes, during the India-England Test match at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Saturday. AP Series done and dusted, Team India make it to Lord’s final SHAMIK CHAKRABARTY AHMEDABAD, MARCH 6 AS SOON as he lifted the trophy afterIndia’sresoundingtriumph over England in Ahmedabad to clinch the series 3-1 and qualify fortheworld Test championship final, Virat Kohli rushed to hand it over to Axar Patel. It said much more than the obvious symbolism. It said that home or away, pink or red ball, Gabba or Motera, Kohli or Rahane as captain, Bumrah or Natarjan, Jadeja or Axar, spin or seam, it doesn’t really matter to this team, and First high-level visit by Biden admn: US defence secy plans India trip this month SHUBHAJIT ROY NEW DELHI, MARCH 6 INWHATcouldturnouttobethe first high-level visit from the US administration under President Joe Biden, Secretary of Defense Lloyd J Austin is likely to visit India later this month, sources have told The Sunday Express. The dates being explored are between March 15 and 25. One source indicated Saturday that it is likely to be around March 20. This will be the first Cabinet- US Defence Secretary Lloyd J Austin rank official visit from the US, since the Biden administration assumed office on January 20. Within days of being confirmed, Austin had called up Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on January 27 and had emphasisedPentagon’scommitmentto the US-India Major Defence Partnership, observing that it is built upon “shared values” and a “common interest in ensuring the Indo-Pacific region remains free and open”. This was a clear signal to counter China’s proactive and assertive actions in the IndoPacific,whichhasbroughtIndian and American militaries and political establishments closer in the last few years. In fact, Austin’s visit, once confirmed, will be close on the MUMBAI, MARCH 6 Mansukh Hiren’s grieving family on Saturday. Deepak Joshi THE POST-MORTEM report of Mansukh Hiren (46), the owner of theScorpiovehiclefoundnear theresidenceof billionaireindustrialistMukeshAmbaniwithgelatin sticks and a threat letter, has reserveditsopiniononthecause of death, noting that there were no major external injury marks onthebody.Theviscerahasnow been sent for forensic analysis. Hiren's body had been found floatingatKalwacreekinMumbraonFridaymorning.Anautomo- that they will always find a way to claw back from any adversity. “This hasn’t come overnight. To be at the top of the table, it’s two-and-half-years of work. For that, it took six years prior to that,” a delighted coach Ravi Shastri told the broadcast cameras. “They got 520 points and deserve to be top of that table and play in that (Test championship) final.” It must feel sweet that they have beaten Australia and England in successive series to enter the final. In some ways, it signals a change in control of the sportfromtheoldguard,notjust in the boardrooms but in the field of play. When they lost the first Test in Australia last December, it felt like the beginning of a recurring nightmare. But a dream comeback ensued. Again, the defeat to England in the first Test came as a shock. But an imperious revival unfoldedandtheaurawasrestored. Thattheyhave nearlyplayed out two different teams in the eight CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 FULL COVERAGE WITH SIX states and two Union territories reporting an increase in daily Covid cases, the Centre Saturday urged them to make optimal use of vaccine doses in critical districts, stepupvaccination of priority groups, tie up with private hospitals for openingupvaccinationtime-tablefor at least 15 days, and to increase contact-tracing to at least 20 people for every positive case. Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan and NITI Aayog member Dr V K Paul, who heads the national task force on Covid19, held a detailed video-conference with officials of Haryana, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand andtheUnionTerritoriesof Delhi and Chandigarh. Nine districts in Delhi,15inHaryana,10inAndhra Pradesh, 10 in Odisha, nine in Himachal Pradesh, seven in Uttarakhand,twoinGoaandone in Chandigarh were specifically flagged, with the Centre saying they "continue to be of concern”. bileaccessoriesdealer,hehadleft his shop in Thane at 8.30 pm on Thursday,andhisphonehadbeen switched off after 10.30 pm. His family had registered a missing person's report at the local police station. Police have registered a case of death by drowning. On Saturday, a four-page letter Hiren sent to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Home Minister Anil Deshmukh and the Police Commissioners of Mumbai and Thane two days before he went missing surfaced, where he claims he had been interrogated CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 At a Covid vaccination centre in Delhi. Tashi Tobgyal TheCentrealsoannounceditwas sending experts to Maharashtra andPunjab,whichcontinuetoreport a surge in cases. Bhushan shared four specific issues: a decrease in tests being conducted; the low share of the more-reliable RT-PCR tests in these areas compared to the Rapid Antigen Tests; increase in weeklypositivity;andthefailure to do adequate contact-tracing of positive cases. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 PAGE 16 BJP first list: Suvendu vs Mamata in Nandigram; Modi rally today SUNDAY STORY PAGE 9 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Ambani security scare: Cause of SUV owner’s death unclear, left letter detailing ‘harassment’ EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE PAGES 12, 13, 14 At the Brigade Parade Ground in Kolkata on Saturday, ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally. Express crossed over to the BJP, from Nandigram against Chief KOLKATA, MARCH 6 Minister Mamata Banerjee. Mamata had catapulted to AHEAD OF Prime Minister power in 2011 on the strength of Narendra Modi's first rally in the anti-land acquisition protest West Bengal after declaration of in Nandigram, with her then the poll schedule, at the historic protege Adhikari the face of the Brigade Parade Ground, agitation on the ground the BJP Saturday threw -- making Nandigram down another gauntlet the most prestigious in the high-voltage batcontest in the Assembly tle for the state. It anelections starting March nounced that it will be DECISION 27. Adhikari had won fielding Suvendu from the Nandigram 2021 Adhikari, the Trinamool seat last time, while WEST leader who recently Mamata announced BENGAL EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE The Royal BENGAL BATTLE earlier that she would be contesting from here instead of her traditional seat of Bhabanipur in Kolkata. The BJP declared candidates for 56 of the 60 seats that will go to polls in first two of the eight phasesinWestBengal.Theother prominent names to get tickets Saturday were former Indian cricketer Ashok Dinda and exIPSofficerBharatiGhosh.TheBJP has left one seat of the 60 (Baghmundi in Purulia district) for ally All Jharkhand Students' Union. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 168 Rohingya refugees moved to ‘holding centres’ in J&K EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE JAMMU, SRINAGAR, MARCH 6 ADAYafteritsetup"holdingcentres" under the Foreigners Act in the Hiranagar sub-jail in Kathua, the J&K administration on Saturday rounded up 168 Rohingya refugees, including women and children, from Jammu and placed them there. The holding centres with a capacitytohold250peoplewere set up by a Home Department notification on Friday under Section 3(2)e of Foreigners Act. “These immigrants were not holding valid passports required in terms of Section (3) of the Passports Act,” a senior government official said, adding that they were in the processof identifying more such immigrants. “After sending them to the holding centres, nationality verification will be done as per the prescribed process,” the official added, saying that on the basis of this, the procedure for deportation will be initiated. Sources said the refugees were brought from Jammu to the sub-jail in buses on Saturday evening. According to a senior police officer, all the refugees were living in J&K without valid documents. Early summer, lack of rain spark fires at reserve, Odisha on edge PAGE 1 ANCHOR AISHWARYA MOHANTY JAMUANI (MAYURBHANJ), MARCH 6 IT’S A race against time in one of the largest biosphere reserves of the country as early onset of summer plus lack of precipitation mean forest fires have now been sparking up for more than a fortnight, with incidents reported continuously since March 1. The Simlipal National Park and Tiger Reserve in north- ern Odisha last saw a major fire in 2015. On Friday afternoon, a 10member patrol team of the OdishaFireServices approached smoke billowing out of a hill near Podagada village only to discover flames across a small hillock -- their third spotting for the day. They get to work armed with a blower and a machine carrying20litresof water,spraying over the fire for nearly 3 km. With such fires usually seen till at least May, the Fire Department is looking at a long summer. The consolation is that the situation seems to be under control, with the fires not reach- ing the core tiger area. While on Wednesday last week 399 fire points had been identified in the reserve, Thursday saw only 26 new points, which weredoused, further falling to 15 new fires Friday. Fires have been reported fromeightof the21rangesof the reserve, and also other forest ranges in nearby districts. As per aForestSurveyReport,activefire events in forest areas stood at 39 in Odisha on Saturday, the highest in the country. Union Minister of Environment and Forest Prakash Javdekar has taken up the matter with the state, with Chief Minister Firefighting teams on a hill near Podagada village, at the Simlipal National Park and Tiger Reserve. Aishwarya Mohanty NaveenPatnaikassuringthatthe situation is under control. The patrol teams at Simlipal get inputs twice a day on fire locations via satelliteimages--between1 amand 2 am,then 1 pm and 2 pm. “If we come to know about a fire at night, we go at night itself. If the fire is not dealt with immediately, it can spread to the crown of trees, making it difficult to tackle. Apart from satellite inputs, wecontinuously patrol the area and also depend onhumanintel,”saidJitenKisku, forester, Jamuani, who oversees three sections as posts for two are vacant, along with 10 ‘fire watchers’. Smoke, he added, is still the most reliable sign. A report by the department says almost all the cases are “anthropogenic”, or started by humans, “out of which maximum cases are to facilitate growing of succulent grass/ leaves for domestic cattle, collection of NTFP (non-timberforestproducts)like Mahua and eradication of ticks & insects”. The fires have started earlier following a virtually no-rainfall January and February, and coincidedwith shedding of leaves by deciduous trees, helping spread the flames. “Due to higher temperatures and wind, the firefighting has been challenging,” said Prakash Jena, Assistant Fire Officer, Baripada. RegionalChief Conservatorof Forests,SimlipalRange,Yogajaya Anandsaidtheyhadmanagedto ensure there was no loss of life. “There have been sporadic incidents and these have been doused after being brought to notice immediately.” With National Tiger Conservation Act guidelines forbidding entry into core areas inhabited by tigers, the firefighting is confined to buffer zones. “So far we have no information on any fire incident in the core area, or necessarystepscanbe taken,”Kisku CONTINUED ON PAGE 2
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