DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA MAHARASHTRA CASES, DEATHS TOTAL CASES TOTAL CASE FATALITY DEATHS RATIO 22,66,674 53,904 May 1-June 30* Aug 1-Sept 30 * Oct 1-Nov 30* Jan 1-Feb 28** Feb 2021 Cases 2.38% Deaths 1,63,255 1,068 May 15-July 15 9,52,727 21,924 Aug 15-Oct 15 4,22,974 7,462 Oct 15-Dec 15 2,19,474 2,628 Jan 11-March 11 1,26,723 1,317 Feb 11-March 11 CFR 0.65% 2.30% 1.76% 1.20% 1.04% * 2020; ** 2021 AMITABH SINHA PUNE, MARCH 12 WHILE THE second wave of the coronavirus epidemic has set off alarm bells, a reassuring sign is that the severity of the disease appears to be significantly less than before, as is evident from the declining death rate. India’soverallcasefatalityratio(CFR),orthenumberofdeaths as a proportion of confirmed infections, is around 1.4 per cent. That means about 14 people out of every 1,000 confirmed infectionshavediedsofar.Butamong those who were infected from ` 85 per kilo ` 113 per kilo ` 139 per kilo ` 55 per Dozen VOCAL FOR LOCAL A RED initiative appears in today’s edition of The Indian Express. The page is an initiative of the marketing solutions team of The Indian Express Group and contains content paid for by advertisers. The page should be read as an advertisement AHMEDABAD, MARCH 12 FLAGGING OFF a commemorative Dandi Yatra to mark the 91st anniversary of the 1930 salt march led by Mahatma Gandhi and launch celebrations leading to the 75th year of Independence, Prime Minister NarendraModiFridayhailedthe “pathpradarshak”(guides)of the freedom struggle, including India's first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru. Using the word “andolan” (agitation) 24 times during a 40minute speech before flagging off the march as part of the celebrationslabelled‘AzadikaAmrit Mahotsav’,Modisaidtherewere several agitations related to the freedom movement that have not been “presented before the RANCHI, MARCH 12 THE JHARKHAND Cabinet on Friday approved an employment policy that requires 75% of private sector jobs up to a salary of Rs 30,000 per month to be reserved for local people, sources close to Chief Minister Hemant Soren said. The decision comes days after Haryana notified its policy of reserving 75% jobs in the private sector up to a specified salary for local candidates. “The CM will announce the new policy in the next week of the Assembly session, probably on March 17. A few modalities India to make US vaccines with Japan funds, Australia logistics China in mind, statement says will counter threats to Indo-Pacific Talking about a billion doses of vaccines by end of 2022: Foreign Secy Shringla SHUBHAJIT ROY SHUBHAJIT ROY AT THE first summit of the leaders of the Quadrilateral grouping,aQuadvaccineinitiativewas announcedFridayinwhichIndia will manufacture American vaccines with Japanese funding and Australian logistical support for countries in the Indo-Pacific region. Three working groups were also launched — Quad vaccine experts group, Quad Critical and Emerging Technology Working Group, and Quad Climate Working Group. These were among the concrete outcomes after Prime NEW DELHI, MARCH 12 USPresidentJoeBideninteractswithPrimeMinisterNarendra Modi,AustralianPMScottMorrisonandJapanesePM YoshihideSuga,duringavirtualQuadsummitonFriday. PTI Minister Narendra Modi, US President Joe Biden, Japan PM Yoshihide Suga and Australian PM Scott Morrison met via virtual mode for the first summit of the grouping. ■ ‘The Quad Vaccine Partnership: A factsheet’ issued after the summit stated: “While ensuring that vaccines have Ambani terror scare phone found in barrack of IM blasts accused MAHENDER SINGH MANRAL & MOHAMED THAVER NEWDELHI,MUMBAI,MARCH12 FOUR TERRORISTS, including Tehseen Akhtar who was the chief of Indian Mujahideen and one of the accused in the Mumbai blasts case of 2011, were allegedly using the cellphone from inside Tihar jail on which the Telegram channel of purported terror outfit Jaish-UlHind was created to claim responsibility for parking an SUV with gelatin sticks outside Mukesh Ambani’s residence in Mumbai last month. Policesuspecttheconspiracy was hatched by Akhtar after coordinating with four more terrorists lodged in a Mumbai jail, BUSINESS AS USUAL BY UNNY people in the way they should have been”. Today, the country is proud of its Constitution and democractic traditions, he said, adding that India is “moving ahead CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 After Haryana, Jharkhand govt clears 75% pvt sector quota ABHISHEK ANGAD QUAD INITIATIVE: THREE WORKING GROUPS LAUNCHED been made available to our people, “Quad” partners will launch a landmark partnership to further accelerate the end of the Covid-19 pandemic. Together, Quad leaders are taking shared action necessary to expand safe and effective Covid-19 vaccine manufacturing in 2021, and will CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 SIGNALLING THEIR commitment to a “shared vision for the freeandopenIndo-Pacific”anda region that is “inclusive, healthy, anchored by democratic values, and unconstrained by coercion”, the first summit of leaders of the Quadrilateral grouping Friday pledgedtopromotea“free,open rules-based order, rooted in international law to advance security and prosperity and counter threats to both in the Indo-Pacific and beyond”. This is a thinly-veiled CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 PM flags off Dandi Yatra, names Nehru among ‘guides’ of freedom struggle PARIMAL DABHI `5.00, WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM SINCE 1932 NEW DELHI, MARCH 12 Januaryonward,thisratioisonly about 0.87 per cent. Inthefirsttwomonthsof this year, India recorded 8,06,453 confirmed cases of coronavirus infections. Deaths usually occur two to three weeks after the infection. In the two months between January 11 and March 11, a total 6,979 deaths have been reported across the country. This trend is more prominent in Maharashtra, which accounts for nearly a third of all coronavirus-related deaths in the country, and 20 per cent of all infections. Maharashtra is also the epicentre of the REG.NO. MCS/067/2018 - 20 RNI REGN. NO. 1543/57 JOURNALISM OF COURAGE SATURDAY, MARCH 13, 2021, MUMBAI, LATE CITY, 16 PAGES Cases up but death rate falling: Ongoing second wave milder ● are yet to be decided; they will be announced in the Assembly,” a top source in the Jharkhand Chief Minister’s Office said. Soren had earlier said that the government was contemplating a reservation policy for locals. According to the Economic Survey, the unemployment rate in Jharkhand rose to a peak of 59.2% at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic in May 2020, before gradually falling to 11.3% in January 2021. In January 2020, the unemployment rate stood at 10.6%. Friday's Cabinet meeting is learnt to have approved several otherproposalsaswell;however, Ministers and officers remained CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 The vehicle was found outside Antilia on Feb 25 with gelatin sticks, a note The Indian Express has learnt. Thecellphonewasrecovered from the barrack of Akhtar, who had been heading Indian Mujahideen since the arrest of its co-founder Yasin Bhatkal in 2013, during a search operation conducted by Tihar authorities on Thursday night, police said. Police are also probing the role of Akhtar alias Monu in connection with another Telegram message that was sent in connection with the low intensity IED blast near the Israel Embassy in Delhi on January 29. “We suspect that whole conspiracy was hatched by Akhtar and he was in constant touch with four more people lodged in a Mumbai jail. We are probing their role and have moved an application before a Delhi Court for his production warrant,” police sources said. Akhtar is one of the accused in the chargesheet filed by Maharashtra Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) in connection with the terror attack in Mumbai in July 2011 that led to the death of 27 people and injured 130 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 TMC to EC: BJP conspiracy to kill Mamata DIPANKAR GHOSE NEW DELHI, MARCH 12 TWO DAYS after Mamata Banerjeewasinjuredwhilecampaigning in Nandigram, the Trinamool Congress doubled down on allegations that DECISION she was at2021 tacked,callingit WEST a “premediBENGAL tated” attempt on her life and “part of a deeprooted conspiracy”. In a petition submitted by six party MPs to the Election Commission in New Delhi on Friday — the second petition in three days; the first was submitted in CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 GOVT & POLITICS SUVENDU ADHIKARI FILES NOMINATION IN BENGAL PAGE 9 Factory output slips back into negative, retail inflation rising AANCHAL MAGAZINE NEW DELHI, MARCH 12 AFTER GROWING in December, India's industrial production slipped into negative territory again in January, posting a contraction of 1.6 per cent due to weak manufacturing, capital goods,andminingoutput,datareleased by the National Statistical Office (NSO) on Friday showed. Retail inflation data released separately showed the headline number rising to a three-month high of 5.03 per cent in February from a 16-month low of 4.06 per cent in January, mainly due to a surge in year-on-year food inflation, which increased to 3.87 per cent in February from 1.96 per cent a month ago. Even though this is well within the Reserve Bank of India's medium-term target of 4±2 per cent and lower than the RBI's projection of 5.2 per cent for the January-March quarter, the sharp pickup in inflation is indication that the central bank may need to have another look at its accommodative stance going forward. Coreinflation—thenon-food, non-fuel inflation component — inched higher to 5.9 per cent in February from 5.7 per cent in January, reflecting a higher pricing power by companies, especiallythebiggeronesratherthan those at the periphery. The minutes of the RBI's Firms regaining pricing power THE DOUBLE whammy of surging retail inflation and contracting factory output notwithstanding, Friday's CPI data release holds out a positive: indications of firms regaining pricing power and their increased ability to passthrough higher prices as demand normalises. monetary policy committee meetingheldduringFebruary35hadnotedthatthetrajectoryof food inflation would shape the centralbank'snear-termoutlook. Abumperkharif cropandrising prospects of a good rabi harvest were expected to be the benign factors, while price pressureswereseenfrompulses, edible oils, spices, and non-alcoholic beverages – along with broad-based escalation in costpush pressures in services and manufacturing prices due to an increase in industrial raw material prices. Friday's data showed the inflation in the oils and fats group CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Plea against law that froze status of worship places: SC seeks Govt reply EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, MARCH 12 THE SUPREME Court Friday sought the Centre’s response on a PIL challenging the Constitutional validity of the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act, 1991 which mandates that the nature of all placesof worship,excepttheone in Ayodhya that was then under litigation, shall be maintained as it was on August 15, 1947, and that no encroachment of any such place prior to the date can be challenged in courts. A bench of Chief Justice S A Bobde and Justice A S Bopanna issued notice on the plea filed by advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay who contended that theAct—itwasbroughtinbythe PVNarasimhaRao-ledCongress governmentduringtheheightof the Ram temple movement — bars the remedy of judicial review which is a basic feature of theConstitution,therebydepriv- ingHindus,Sikhs,Buddhistsand Jains the right to move court to get their places of worship, destroyed or encroached upon by “barbarian invaders”, restored. In June 2020, Lucknowbased Vishwa Bhadra Pujari Purohit Mahasangh had moved the Supreme Court, challenging the Act. Days later, the Jamiat Ulama-I-Hind too approached the court, seeking permission to be made party in the matter since “even issuance of notice in CONTINUED ON PAGE 2
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