log on to thegoan.net @thegoaneveryday SUNDAY APRIL 11, 2021 12 pages PRICE ` 6 How worried should you be about coronavirus variants? IN SHORT >> Two boys drown at Harvalem waterfall BICHOLIM: Gurubhushan (Golu), 17, and Satyam Kumar, 18, who went for a swim at Harvalem waterfall, drowned on Saturday afternoon. A third youth managed to swim back to safety. Bicholim fire brigade personnel pulled the body out of the water and handed it over to the police. >> See pg 3 10 killed, 30 hurt in UP truck mishap ETAWAH: At least 10 people were killed and over 30 injured after a truck fell into a roadside ditch in Uttar Pradesh’s Etawah today. All the victims were men. The passengers were on their way to attend a religious gathering in the district’s Lakhna when the driver lost control and the truck fell into the 35-feet deep ditch. >> See pg6 India, China to maintain stability NEW DELHI: India and China have agreed at their 11th round of military talks to jointly maintain stability on the ground, and avoid any new incidents in eastern Ladakh. The Indian Army on Saturday said the two sides agreed on the need to resolve the outstanding issues in accordance with the existing agreements and protocols. >> See pg 6 Protesting farmers block expressway NEW DELHI: Intensifying their protest against the three farm laws, farmers blocked the Kundli–Manesar–Palwal expressway at some places in Haryana on Saturday. The blockade started at 8 am and would last 24 hours. >> See pg 6 India, Sri Lanka ink air bubble pact NEW DELHI: The Civil Aviation Ministry on Saturday said that India has established an individual bilateral air bubble arrangement with Sri Lanka for operation of special international passenger flights between the two countries. Saudi Aramco agrees to big $12.4 bn deal DUBAI: Saudi oil producer Aramco has agreed a $12.4 billion deal to sell a 49% stake in its pipelines to a consortium led by US-based EIG Global Energy Partners. Announced late on April 9, it is the company’s largest deal since its record $29.4 billion initial public offering in late 2019. Pentagon defends its Navy incident WASHINGTON: The Pentagon has defended its Navy asserting its navigational rights within India’s exclusive economic zone without taking New Delhi’s permission, calling the move “consistent with international law”. NASA’s Ingenuity set for its first flight WASHINGTON: The helicopter, which NASA has placed on Mars, could make its first flight over the Red Planet within two days after a successful initial test of its rotors, stated the US space agency. The four-pound helicopter, dubbed the Ingenuity, to take off from Mars’ Jezero Crater on Sunday at 10:54 pm US eastern time (0254 GMT Monday) and hover 10 feet (3 meters), NASA said. WEATHER >> Max: 35.1 C Min: 26 C Humidity: 80% TIDES Low: High: 4:40 11:03 16:46 22:59 Facebook.com/thegoaneveryday 9 The Goan (Playstore) PANAJI MARGAO GOA VOLUME VI, NO. 291 GOA Cong slams govt’s flip-flop on holding online exams 2 Instagram.com/thegoaneveryday RNI: GOAENG/2015/65729 GOA Battle to retain political legacy reigns supreme in Mapusa 3 Water scarcity on cards, Goa stares at harrowing summer DESPITE 100 INCHES OF AVERAGE RAINFALL, STATE THIRSTS FOR WATER THE GOAN I NETWORK PANAJI Despite being showered with over 100 inches of rain on an average, Goa’s water supply woes are a recurring phenomenon in the summer months and this year is unlikely to be any different and PWD officials stare at a long and harrowing summer as usual. In addition to the usual depletion of water levels at the various reservoirs, disturbance in water supply chains across Goa due to ongoing maintenance and upgradation works of pipelines and summer maintenance works carried out by the power department add to the increasing water supply disruptions to the end consumer. Later this week, the supply to the entire Bardez taluka will be disrupted as the authorities WATER WOES SOUTH On Sunday (today), water supply will be shut to Salcete, Mormugao, Sanguem and Quepem areas as the Electricity Department has planned its “annual maintenance shutdown” at its Xeldem sub-station. The water supply in South Goa will be restored to normalcy only on Tuesday, the PWD said have planed a 36-hour shutdown at the Assonora water treatment plant. The PWD said the pipeline parallel to the National Highway-66 (formerly NH-17) from the Karaswada junction to Colvale necessitated the shut- File picture of the ruptured water pipeline at Karaswada. NORTH The entire Bardez taluka will have no water supply on April 15 and 16 due to the shutting down of the Assonora plant from 7 am on April 15 to 7 pm the next day. The following day, supply will be restricted until it is fully restored in the evening, the PWD said ting down of the Assonora plant from 7 am on April 15 to 7 pm the next day. The entire Bardez taluka will therefore have no water supply on April 15 and 16. The following day, supply will be restricted until it is fully Blood day as 4 killed in Bengal poll violence Maha CM hints at strict lockdown AGENCIES AGENCIES KOLKATA Violence erupted in West Bengal on Saturday after CISF personnel allegedly opened fire after being attacked by locals. Four persons were killed during the incident, police said. The incident occurred in West Bengal’s Cooch Behar district, where polling is underway for the fourth phase of the Assembly elections. According to the police, the CISF personnel opened fire after locals attempted to “snatch their rifles”. “A scuffle (between locals and CISF personnel) took place and the locals gheraoed them and attempted to snatch their rifles, following which the central forces opened fire. In another unrelated incident, a first-time voter was shot dead by unidentified persons outside a polling booth in Cooch Behar district, police said. The deceased voter has been identified as one Anand Burman. According to the police, he was dragged from booth number 85, located in Pathantuli area in Sitalkuchi by a group of unidentified people and shot dead. Soon after the incident, the Trinamool Congress and the BJP accused each other for the violence. While the TMC has alleged that the unidenti- Security personnel keep vigil at a polling station after Election Commission the violence. PTI Security personnel forced to open fire to save lives: EC KOLKATA: The Election Commission on Saturday said that the clashes took place outside a polling booth in West Bengal’s Cooch Behar after local residents attacked security forces due to a misunderstanding. It said that forces had no alternative other than to open fire to save their lives and government property. The poll panel said that the misunderstanding happened after CISF personnel were trying to help a boy who had fallen ill near the polling booth in Sitalkuchi. Some local residents thought the boy was beaten up by the CISF personnel and called about 300-350 villagers. fied men were associated with the BJP, the saffron party has claimed that the TMC tried manipulating voting at the booth by planting the victim there. TMC supremo and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee alleged central forces were acting at the behest of the “Home Minister, Amit Shah” who was restored in the evening, the PWD said. Similar disruption in water supply will also happen this week in South Goa serviced by the Selaulim water treatment plant due to power supply disruptions. “conspiring against the people”. Demanding resignation of Shah, Banerjee said she will visit the booth on Sunday. “I will take revenge. My revenge will be through EVMs. Central forces are not my enemy. But, Amit Shah is conspiring to kill people,” she said. MUMBAI In view of the alarming rise in coronavirus cases in Maharashtra, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray Saturday hinted at the imposition of a strict lockdown in the state, some ministers and a senior BJP leader who attended an all-party meeting said. Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar said he would hold a meeting on Monday to work out a financial package for the sections of people whose livelihood bear the impact, while his colleague Ashok Chavan stated the “nature, scope and duration of the lockdown will be finalised soon”. “Though no formal decision on a lockdown has been taken at the all-party meeting, the chief minister appears to be in favour of a strict lockdown,” news agency PTI quoted state BJP president Chandrakant Patil as saying while speaking to the media after the virtual meeting, in which the states’s Covid-19 situation was discussed for over two hours. State minister Nawab Malik said the chief minister will hold meet with the state’s COVID-19 task force on Sunday before taking a decision. Meanwhile, on the first day of the weekend lockdown imposed across Maharashtra, streets wore a deserted look in many parts of Mumbai. On Sunday (today), water supply will be shut to Salcete, Mormugao, Sanguem and Quepem areas as the Electricity Department has planned its “annual maintenance shutdown” at its Xeldem sub-station. The water supply in South Goa will be restored to normalcy only on Tuesday, the PWD said. Breaches and damage to pipelines by contractors executing work related to the national highways is another recent phenomenon that adds to the disruption of water supply which is acutely felt by the citizenry in the summer months. A couple of weeks ago, PWD officials in Bardez were kept on their toes when the heavy machinery engaged >Continued on P5 SPORTS IPL 2021: Openers power Delhi Capitals to easy win over CSK 8 402 candidates in fray for polls to 5 civic bodies THE GOAN I NETWORK PANAJI After the last date of withdrawal of nominations on Saturday, total of 402 candidates are in the fray for the civic polls in five municipal councils slated for April 23. The state Election commission declared there were total 49 withdrawals on Saturday adding that a total of 451 nominations had been filed. Significantly in Sanguem municipality there were no withdrawals. As per State Election Commission (SEC), 14 candidates withdrew from Mapusa taking the tally after withdrawal to 95. In Mormugao, 136 candidates are in the fray and 11 candidates withdrew. Further in Margao 115 candidates are in fray as 17 withdrew. Similarly in Quepem, 62 candidates will be fighting it out after 7 candidates withdrew their candidature. In Margao, around 17 candidates withdrew their candidature from the fray, including the 11 candidates who have withdrawn in favour of the Margao Civic Alliance. In Mapusa, in an attempt to retain political legacy several former chairpersons and ex-councilors have fielded their sons, daughters, sisters, wives and husbands in the civic election for the Mapusa Municipal Council election. Four former chairpersons and three ex-vice-chairpersons are among the 81 candidates who will be contesting the civic election from various wards in Mapusa after 14 candidates withdrew their nominations on Saturday. In Vasco, a total of 11 candidates withdrew their nominations on Saturday leaving 125 aspirants in the fray to contest the upcoming civic polls from 25 different wards of the Mormugao Municipal Council. State’s Covid numbers don’t add up, no clarity on recovered 540 cases on Saturday, one death takes count to 846 THE GOAN I NETWORK PANAJI A grim week concluded for Goa with 540 new Covid cases on Saturday. While the State is grappling to control the cases, the Covid figures threw up some discrepancies for which there are no answers. Shockingly, the rise in active cases, with due consideration of the 11 deaths, does not correspond with this overall increase in cases. As against the 2,077 active cases on April 4, the state currently has a total of 3,969 active cases, a rise of 1,892 cases. It remains unclear whether 819 of the total 2,711 persons who have tested positive since April 4, have recovered as per the national protocols for clinical management of Covid patients. Meanwhile, Saturday’s 540 cases were detected from among the 2,960 samples tested in the last 24 hours. The daily positivity rate stood at 18.24 per cent. Goa has recorded 2,711 new cases of Covid 19 over the last one week. According to the daily bulletin released by the Health Department, the total confirmed Covid cases in Goa were 59,068 on April 4. The number has risen to 61,779 on People at the primary school behind the Panaji health centre for vaccination. The unnecessary crowding is a worry. Narayan Pissurlenkar Margao spike touches 386 MARGAO: In another major spike in cases in Margao, the number of active Covid cases touched a whopping 386 on Saturday as against 339 cases on Friday, an increase by 47 cases in a single day. >> See pg 2 April 10. One Covid related death was recorded on Saturday raising the Covid victim count of the state to 846. NIV REPORT: Meanwhile, what could add to the State’s woes, the National Institute of Virology (NIV) report received after 15 days, confirmed that 4 strains of coronavirus are circulating in Goa. The Directorate of Health Services finally received the much-awaited report Pune on Friday with the bombshell finding that some of the 15 samples forwarded for genome sequencing have tested positive for four different mutated strains of the virus. These trains include the ones from the UK, US, double-mutant strain from Maharashtra and the primary coronavirus strain. VACCINATION: A total of 7,741 beneficiaries were vaccinated on Saturday across the state under the Tika Utsav, the mass vaccination drive announced by the central >Continued on P5 Fissures in Congress over tie-up with GFP Gun salutes across UK for Prince Philip THE GOAN I NETWORK AGENCIES Fatorda Cong moves forward, fields 6 for civic polls; says will support other candidates MARGAO In a major development, the Fatorda Block Congress committee has fielded as many as six candidates under the banner of Congress For Fatorda panel for the ensuing elections for the Margao civic body, even as Margao MLA and Opposition Leader Digambar Kamata and Curtorim MLA came under intense fire within the party for joining hands with Goa Forward Party. Block President Piedade Noronha said they will extend support to a couple of candidates in the fray for the civic polls. Fatorda block in-charge, Dr Ashish Kamat and Congress NGOs endorse Cong and GFP alliance MARGAO: The Margao Civic Alliance formed by Opposition Leader Digambar Kamat, Congress MLA Reginaldo Lourneco and Goa Forward Chief Vijai Sardesai to fight the Margao Municipal election received a boost with the Goemkar – Ek Pavl Ekcharanchem, comprising of several NGOs endorsing the Alliance, saying the Alliance will help defeat the BJP. >> See pg 2 leader Trajano D’Mello questioned Leader of Opposition Digambar Kamat for his decision to forge an alliance with Goa Forward Party for the Margao municipal election, saying the regional party is still a member of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA). Fatorda Block Congress candidates in the fray include Baretto Fatima (ward 3), Jessy Sandra Vaz (ward 4), Nagvenkar Yogesh (ward 6), Roshal Fernandes (ward 9), Kamat Rajat Luma (ward 10) and Sayed Anwar Babulal (ward 11). Fatorda Block Congress incharge Dr Ashish Kamat said the Congress leadership had taken a call that local leaders will decide on fielding panels for the ensuing municipal polls since the elections are not fought on party lines. “Opposition Leader Digambar Kamat, who represents Margao, did not take the Fatorda Block Congress into confidence before forging the Margao Civic Alliance with the Goa Forward Party. I had told Kamat that since Vijai Sardesai is part of the NDA, which is headed by the BJP, he should quit the NDA. No Congressmen will forget how he had ditched the Congress in 2017,” he said, while reminding that Fatorda has been a Congress bastion in the past. Trajano questioned the Digambar and Reginaldo Lourenco for holding hands with Goa Forward, which is still a part of the NDA, saying the three leaders have come together for their self-interest and not in the interest of the party. Trajano demanded to know why Curtorim Congress MLA Reginaldo Lourenco did not field candidates in the three municipal wards falling in Curtorim constituency, while suspecting a conspiracy to weaken the Congress in Margao, Fatorda and Curtorim. “The UPA’s fight is against the NDA. How will the Congress fight the NDA when party leaders have entered into an alliance with a NDA partner in the Margao municipal polls,” Trajano asserted. Suspecting that huge money will flow into the Margao municipal election, he demanded that the government agencies such as the ED maintain a watch in Fatorda during the polls. LONDON Coordinated gun salutes simultaneously rang throughout the United Kingdom Saturday to honor the late Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh and husband of Queen Elizabeth II. He died Friday at the age of 99. A small funeral is set for April 17 at Windsor Castle. Starting at noon local time, members of the Royal Artillery fired one round each minute, totaling 41 rounds. The ceremonies occurred in London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast — as well as on multiple Royal Navy warships and in the British overseas territory of Gibraltar. Philip was married to Queen Elizabeth II for over 73 years. He holds the longest tenure as a royal consort in the history of the British monarchy. “The Armed Forces are immensely proud of their close relationship with Prince Philip,” the British Ministry of Defense said in a statement after the gun salutes began. The late prince had served as a Royal Navy officer and held multiple military titles within the British Armed Forces. Gun salutes are a tradition in the UK spanning back at least three centuries to commemorate national events. Salutes were carried out following the deaths of former Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Queen Victoria. In 2017, 41 rounds were also fired to celebrate Queen Elizabeth reaching 65 years as queen. >>See deatiled story on pg 7
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