Chennai Rates Diesel/l Rs.68.22 Gold (24k) Rs.4753/gm Petrol/l Rs 75.54 Silver Rs.51.40/gm CHENNAI Saturday 23-5-2020 VOL. 25 No.312 PAGES 4 ` 4.00 u NATIONAL DAILY FOR THE PEOPLE CM reviews situation in Salem AIADMK govt enters fifth year, EPS, OPS recall Jayalalithaa’s feat Ask cadres to take a pledge to ensure victory in coming days Chennai, May 23: The AIADMK government led by Edappadi K. Palaniswami has completed four years of its present term on Friday and is entering its fifth year on Saturday. In a joint statement, the Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami and the Deputy CM O. Panneerselvam urged the party cadre to take a pledge to ensure victory of the party in the coming days. It may be recalled, it was the second AIADMK government after 1985 to retain the power for the consecutive term and it was achieved by former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa. Recalling late Ms Jayalalithaa’s words that the “AIADMK founded by MGR will continue to be in power and serve the people for another 100 years,” EPS and OPS said it was in that spirit they were seeking to take forward the organsiation with the support and cooperation of its 1.50 crore cadre.They further said “This government has been in the forefront of safeguarding the interests of the state and fulfilling the needs of the people. We will continue to efficiently follow in the footsteps of Jayalalithaa. They appealed to the party cadres and functionaries to resolve that AIADMK rule, dubbed as “people’s rule” remains in the state not just ‘yesterday’ and ‘today’, but ‘tomorrow’ as well, indirectly referring to the assembly elections scheduled in the state next summer. “People in the state are praising this government that has taken care of their welfare. They want this government to continue to remain in power,” EPS and OPS said. Despite trying times, the leaders EPS and OPS recalled the achievements of the AIADMK government in the last four years. They included, receiving the Central Government’s ‘Good Governance Award’, the State being five-times winner of the ‘Krishi Karman Award’ for Its agriculture production, the extent of foreign investments both have attracted during their separate foreign visits abroad last year, getting the Centre’s nod for 11 new medical colleges for the state in a single year and for initiating various other welfare and development schemes including Athikadvau-Avinashi water scheme. EPS and OPS also pointed out that even in the Covid-19 containment and control measures, and in protecting the livelihoods of the poorer sections in the wake of the coronavirus lockdown, the government has done very well In implementing a slew of measures. And above all, the AIADMK “continued to protect the rights of the people and the state: the leaders asserted, adding, party cadre should help to carry for-ward this legacy of pro-people good governance In the coming days and years. Despite facing health issues, Jayalalithaa undertook a grueling election campaign and ensured a victory for the second consecutive term, a feat earlier achieved only by party founder MGR, the statement added. Earlier, AIADMK founder and former Chief Minister MG Ramachandran retained the power for three consecutive terms. After the sudden demise of Jayalalithaa, OPS had assumed charges of Chief Minister on December 6, 2016. Following his resignation on February 6, 2017 , EPS took charge as CM on February 20. EPS now has been the CM for more than three years despite the speculation of the opposition parties that the government won’t last for even few months. Even after facing various challenges in the political arena and natural disasters, the government is smoothly functioning and receiving various awards from various forums including the union government. Some of the notable awards that Tamil Nadu government bagged are, Tamil Nadu topped the Good Governance Index launched by the union government, Tamil Nadu bagged Krishi Karman award for five consecutive years and others. TN PMG(CCR)/WPP No 676/18-20 CM allows beauty parlours to reopen in rural areas from May 24 Chennai, May 23: Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami cleared the decks for beauty parlours to reopen in the state from May 24, 7 AM to 7 PM only in the rural areas. In a statement issued today, Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami said, Our government is taking serious measures to control and prevention of Covid -19 on war Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami chaired review meeting on coronavirus with battery of officials headed by Salem Collector CV Raman today. Police Commisioner K. Periaiah, Senthil Kumar, Deputy Commisioner Pradeep Kumar, SP Dr.S.Deepa Ganiger, Corporation Commisioner Sathish were also present. CHief Minister enquired about the on going activities to combat COVID 19 spread and the containment plans in force. He also reviewed the lock down situation and the efficiency of movements of essential goods for the people here. u REGD. NO.TN/.CC (S) DN/134/18-20 RNI Regd.No. 62432/1995 footing measures. I have already ordered to allow salon to open in rural areas from May 19. Considering the demand made by hair dressers and beauty parlours, the beauty parlours is allowed to open from May 24 from 7 AM to 7 PM in Tamil Nadu except Chennai and its suburban. There is no permission to open beauty parlour in containment areas. Em- ployees belong to the containment areas should not be appointed as hair dressers. Guidelines have also been issued to ensure social distancing and hygiene are maintained in the salons. Barbers must wear masks and hand gloves. There has to be strict adherence to social distancing. Salon owners must ensure frequent hand washes and a 5-time disinfection. Harsh Vardhan new WHO Executive chairman, CM greets New Delhi, May 23: Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, who is at the forefront of India’’s battle against COVID-19 pandemic, took charge as the chairman of the 34-member WHO Executive Board on Friday, officials said. Vardhan, who succeeded Dr Hiroki Nakatani from Japan, offered his condolences at the loss of lives due to the cooronavirus pandemic across the globe. In his remarks after being elected as the chairman of the WHO executive board, he also said a strengthening of global partnerships and a shared response was needed to deal with the current crisis caused by the pandemic. Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami congratulated Dr. Harsh Vardhan, who has taken over as the Executive Board Chairman of World Health Organisation (WHO). In his message Chief Minister said “I congratulate you on assuming charge as the Executive Board Chairman of World Health Organisation (WHO). It is a matter of pride for India that a person from our country has attained such a high position through ability and dint of hard work. It is a fitting recognition of your long and distinguished career. On behalf of the people and Government of Tamil Nadu, I congratulate you and wish you all success.”, Palaniswami said. The proposal to appoint India’’s nominee to the executive board was signed by the 194-nation World Health Assembly on Tuesday. Last year, WHO’’s South-East Asia group had unanimously decided to elect India’’s nominee to the executive board for a three-year-term beginning May. The chairman’’s post is held by rotation for one year among regional groups and it was decided last year that India’’s nominee would be the Executive Board chairman for the first year starting Friday. It is not a full-time assignment and the minister will just be required to chair the Executive Board’’s meetings, an official said. The Executive Board DMK leader R S Bharathi arrested for communal remark Chennai, May 23: DMK Organisation Secretary and Rajya Sabha MP R S Bharathi was arrested today for his alleged disparaging remarks made against a particular community a few months ago, police said. Senior DMK party leader was picked up from his house this morning for allegedly making the comments against a particular community, with a case being filed against him recently. Bharathi said his remarks made at a DMK meeting in February had been “twisted” and said it was not reported in any newspaper while “some in the social media carried out a campaign against me.” Speaking to reporters here, he said he had “responded” to the issue then in the media and more than 100 days had passed off since then. Palaniswami for resuming TN air operations only from May 31 Chennai, May 23: With the spike in Coronavirus cases weighing heavily upon it, the Tamil Nadu government is not in favour of restarting domestic air services connecting cities in the state till this month-end and might take up the matter with the Centre, an official said . As the union civil aviation ministry gears up to resume the services from Monday, Tamil Nadu wants the plans deferred for now. Officials in the State Secretariat said that the stand taken by Chief Minister K Palaniswami against resumption of regular air services till May 31 remains. “The government may take up the issue with the Centre,” an official told PTI. The immediate concern of the government is to screen all the passengers arriving to the state and keep track of the infected, if any. The sheer volume of passengers at the airports would make the health machinery concentrate more on the inbound visi- tors, officials said. Since the last ten days, the state health department detected 66 positive cases among returnees from abroad by flights and other states by trains. They were all quarantined. As per the government guidelines on COVID-19 prevention and management, all entering the state should be scanned for the virus and if found to have symptoms, would be taken to government facilities for treatment. Those who don’t show symptoms would be home quarantined. During his interaction with Prime Minister Narendra Modi through video conferencing on May 11, Palaniswami had pitched against restarting air and rail services in Tamil Nadu till May end. All scheduled commercial passenger flights have been suspended in the country since March 25, when the Modi government imposed a lockdown to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus. H-1B legislations propose priority to US-educated foreign youths Washington, May 23: A bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced a legislation in both the chambers of the US Congress proposing major reforms in skilled non-immigrant visa programs by giving priority to US-educated foreign technology professionals in issuing H-1B work visas. The H-1B and L-1 Visa Reform Act, as introduced in House of Representatives and Senate, will require US Citizenship and Immigration Services to prioritize for the first time the annual allocation of H-1B visas. The new system would ensure that the best and brightest students being educated in the United States receive preference for an H-1B visa, including advanced degree holders, those being paid a high wage, and those with valuable skills, proponents of this major legislative reforms said Friday. In the Senate, it was introduced by Senators Chuck Grassley and Dick Durbin. In the House of Representatives, it was introduced by Congressmen Bill Pascrell, Paul Gosar, Ro Khanna, Frank Pallone and Lance Gooden. The legislation reinstates Congress’s original intent in the H-1B and L-1 visa programs by increasing enforcement, modifying wage requirements and securing protections for both American workers and visa holders, the lawmakers said. The legislation, among other things, explicitly prohibits the replacement of American workers by H-1B or L-1 visa holders, clarifying that working conditions of similarly employed American workers may not be adversely affected by the hiring of an H-1B worker, including H-1B workers who have been placed by another employer at the American worker’s worksite. These provisions address the types of abuses that have been well-documented. Importantly, the legislation proposes increased crackdown on outsourcing companies that import large numbers of H-1B and L-1 workers for temporary training purposes only to send the workers back to their home countries to do the same job. Specifically, the bill would prohibit companies with more than 50 employees, of which at least half are H-1B or L-1 holders, from hiring additional H-1B employees. The bill gives the US Department of Labor enhanced authority to review, investigate, and audit employer compliance with program requirements, as well as to penalize fraudulent or abusive conduct. It requires the production of extensive statistical data about the H-1B and L-1 programs, including wage data, worker education levels, place of employment, and gender. In addition, the H-1B and L-1 Visa Reform Act encompasses several reforms of the L-1 visa program, including establishment of a wage floor for L-1 workers; authority for the US Department of Homeland Security to investigate, audit, and enforce compliance with L-1 program requirements; assurance that intra-company transfers occur between legitimate branches of a company and don’t involve shell facilities; and a change to the definition of specialized knowledge to ensure that L-1 visas are reserved only for truly key personnel. comprises 34 individuals, technically qualified in the field of health, each one designated by a member-state elected to do so by the World Health Assembly. Member States are elected for three-year terms. The board meets at least twice a year and the main meeting is normally in January, with a second shorter meeting in May, immediately after the Health Assembly. The main functions of the executive board are to give effect to the decisions and policies of the Health Assembly, to advise it and generally to facilitate its work. Addressing the 73rd World Health Assembly via video conferencing on Monday, Vardhan had said India took all necessary steps well in time to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. He had asserted that the country has done well in dealing with the disease and is confident of doing better in the months to come. Towards the end of his speech, Vardhan also initiated a standing ovation by the board for all the ‘’Covid warriors’’ across the globe. India takes over the chairmanship of the Executive Board amid growing calls, including by US President Donald Trump, to investigate how the coronavirus originated in China’’s Wuhan city and subsequent action by Beijing. Naomi passes Serena as top earning athlete New York, May 23: Naomi Osaka has been a Grand Slam champion and No. 1 in the WTA rankings. Now she’s also the No. 1 in the list: topearning female athlete. According to a story posted on Forbes.com on Friday, the 22-year-old tennis star earned $37.4 million over the past 12 months from endorsements and prize money, eclipsing Serena Williams in that span. Osaka’s total is a oneyear record for a female athlete, topping the previous mark of $29.7 million set by Maria Sharapova in 2015.