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Saturday
July 2020
3:46 AM IST
News Headlines
Missing Mayor found dead in north Seoul        Heavy rain hits scenic central Japan, more damage in south        Bikru bloodbath mastermind Vikas Dubey nabbed in MP town        NIA to probe gold smuggling case, ex-Consulate woman employee moves HC for anticipatory bail        Kerala reports biggest daily spike of 339 infections,COVID-19 tally crosses 6,500 mark        Holder wins early battle with Stokes as Windies take control        Ganguly announces cancellation of Asia Cup in September        We have asked every state to adopt one sport: Rijiju        Rupee slips 9 paise to 75.02 against USD        ICICI Bank to raise up to Rs 15,000 crore to bolster capital base        Trump threatens to cut federal aid if schools don't reopen        Pak PM urges world community to share info on COVID-19 strategies as tally rises to 239,225        Enhancing global cooperation need of the hour to effectively tackle COVID-19: Prez        Kanpur encounter: 2 policemen held for 'tipping off' gangster Vikas Dubey about police action        CBSE should explain rationale behind dropping certain chapters from curriculum: Sisodia        301 test positive in Kerala,COVID-19 tally crosses 6,000 mark        Dhoni turns 39, wishes pour in from all corners        New era for cricket as England-West Indies series begins        India''s COVID-19 tally, fatality rate per million population lowest in world: Govt        Rahul asks why no mention of Galwan Valley in MEA statement on talks        
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National News
Lockdown has failed, Centre must spell out reopening strategy: Rahul
 
New Delhi: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday said the four phases of the nationwide lockdown have "failed" and not given the results that Prime Minister Narendra Modi expected as he urged the Centre to spell out its strategy for "opening up" the country. Addressing an online press conference, he expressed concern that India is the only country which is relaxing the lockdown when the virus is "exponentially rising". He said that if the government functions haphazardly and takes ad-hoc measures during the non-lockdown period, the country will face a second wave of coronavirus which will be "extremely devastating".

The Congress leader asked the prime minister to play aggressively on the front foot and tell the country on what he intends to do moving forward. He said the prime minister who initially played on the front foot has now gone on the back foot as he is not seen. He, however, said he did not rate Modi''s performance saying he is not a professor and "that would be inappropriate for me to do". Gandhi further said if money is not given in the hands of the poor and small and medium industry, there could be "serious economic damage" in the country as he sought to know the government''s plan to support migrants and various states in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We want to ask the government, what is their strategy as far as India''s opening up is concerned and what precautions they are going to take, how are they thinking and how they are going to support the migrants and our states?" he asked. He said it is important that the government share concrete plans for how it intends to deal with the migrants crisis and how it plans to scale up testing which is urgently needed. He also said the government should seek the advice of experts and states and take decisions in a systematic way and not ad-hoc. There are many critical questions that the government is not providing us answers to, which need to be addressed urgently, he alleged.

Gandhi said the prime minister had said the war against coronavirus would be won in 21 days, but 60 days later, it is now clear whether the lockdown has not been able to defeat the virus. With the number of new cases increasing exponentially, he said, it is clear that the prime minister and his advisors had underestimated the scale of the battle India had to launch to defeat coronavirus. The prime minister was quick to take centrestage in the early stages of this battle, Gandhi said, adding now he has stepped back when his leadership is most needed. However, he said governments in Congress-ruled states are fighting valiantly against the virus, but they are struggling because the funding that the central government should have made available to them has not been forthcoming.

"What India is facing now is a result of a failed lockdown. It is pretty clear that the four stages of lockdown have not given the result that the prime minister expected," he said. He said though he does not wish get into why the government failed, but with the disease profile not reducing and is shooting up instead the government needs to tell what it is thinking of doing going forward. The former Congress chief said though he is not an expert but "we need to open up with planning and systematically and not in an ad-hoc way". He said the country''s economy needs to be restored by infusing money into the hands of the poor and the small and medium businesses.

"The central government must infuse cash into hands of people and it will be fatal if they do not do it," he noted. A dangerous situation will arise if financial support to people and industry is not provided, he warned. The Congress leader called for financial support to states, saying it will be difficult for them to function without central aid. They have said that they are fighting a "lonely battle" but are confident. Gandhi also hit out at Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath saying people of the state are not his or the state''s personal property that his government should grant permission before they are hired by other states. "It is very unfortunate that the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh views India in such a way.

These people are not his personal property, they are not the personal property of Uttar Pradesh, these people are Indian citizens and they have the right to decide what they want to do and they have the right to live the life, they want to live," he said. He also called upon the central government to be transparent about what is happening in Ladakh and Nepal. "We would like the central government to make it clear to people on what is happening on the border with China," he said. Asked about the rising number of COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra, where the Congress is a partner in the government, Gandhi said there is a difference between running the government and supporting a government.

"We are supporting the Maharashtra government, but we are not in the key decision-making role," he said, adding that Maharashtra requires full support of the central government as the state is fighting a very difficult battle. Gandhi said in Congress-run states have been doing whatever they can to both stop the spread of the virus and reducing the economic pain the people are facing through direct cash transfers and other measures. "But, without financial support from the Centre our state governments'' ability to help those urgently in need of support is limited," he noted, adding that "states are hamstrung if the national government is not behind them."

On the economic stimulus announced so far, he said, economists in India and around the world have done the math and come to the "sad conclusion" that the economic stimulus announced by the prime minister is actually less than one per cent of our GDP and that too most of it is in terms of loans that could drag our MSME''s into a debt trap from which they will struggle to recover. He noted that India was smart and intelligent enough to work out a path through a successful compromise between health and economics.


Bikru bloodbath mastermind Vikas Dubey nabbed in MP town
Enhancing global cooperation need of the hour to effectively tackle COVID-19: Prez
Kanpur encounter: 2 policemen held for 'tipping off' gangster Vikas Dubey about police action
CBSE should explain rationale behind dropping certain chapters from curriculum: Sisodia
India''s COVID-19 tally, fatality rate per million population lowest in world: Govt
Rahul asks why no mention of Galwan Valley in MEA statement on talks
COVID-19: CBSE rationalises syllabus by up to 30 pc for classes 9 to 12 to reduce course load
'PM meets President to discuss various issues'
Heavy rains continue in Mumbai; low-lying areas waterlogged
COVID-19: Delhi govt orders compulsory rapid antigen detection test for high-risk individuals
ICMR says following all globally accepted norms to fast-track vaccine; wants to 'cut red tape'
Nitish Kumar sends swab sample for COVID-19 test
Rajasthan conducting over 41,000 COVID tests per day: State health min
8 UP police personnel killed in encounter with criminals in Kanpur
Militant who killed CRPF jawan, minor boy in Anantnag gunned down in Srinagar encounter
Rajasthan govt transfers over 100 IAS officers
Over 19K COVID-19 cases push India's tally above 6 lakh, 5 days after crossing 5-lakh mark
CM Kejriwal inaugurates plasma bank, asks people to donate plasma to save COVID-19 patients
Banning Chinese apps a "digital strike": Prasad
Govt resorting to cheap tactics: Cong on Govt order asking Priyanka to vacate Lutyens Bungalow
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
My whole life has been a miracle: Rajinikanth
 Mumbai: From starting out as a bus conductor to becoming one of the biggest stars of the: country,  
'Game of Thrones' star Indira Varma tests positive for coronavirus
Coronavirus: Release of Ranveer Singh-starrer '83' put on hold
'Joker' earns Joaquin Phoenix his maiden Oscar
INTERNATIONAL NEWS
Missing Mayor found dead in north Seoul
 Seoul: The Mayor of this South Korean capital was found dead at Bugaksan mountain here on Thursday,
Heavy rain hits scenic central Japan, more damage in south
Trump threatens to cut federal aid if schools don't reopen
Pak PM urges world community to share info on COVID-19 strategies as tally rises to 239,225
KERALA NEWS
Kerala reports biggest daily spike of 339 infections,COVID-19 tally crosses 6,500 mark
 Thiruvananthapuram: With COVID19 cases continuing to spiral, Kerala on Thursday recorded the biggest
Kerala reports 272 fresh cases; 68 infected through contact
Will take appropriate decision at appropriate time:Jose K Mani
Kerala reports 131 new COVID cases, 75 recoveries, 2,112 patients under treatment
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