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Delhi News Highlights: People without masks inside private four wheelers will no longer be challaned – The Indian Express

Delhi Live News: Delhi government on Saturday said people travelling in private four wheelers will no longer be challaned for not wearing masks. The order released by the administration will come into effect from Monday. The fine for not wearing masks in public places and not abiding by social distancing norms has also been reduced from Rs 2,000 to Rs 500.
After two months of Covid-induced restrictions that eventually took a toll on economic activities, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) on Friday decided to lift all Covid-related restrictions. This means, the night curfew will be lifted, markets can stay open till 10 pm, and restaurants, bars, cafes, and cinema halls can function at 100 per cent seating capacity. Further, DDMA said schools would discontinue online/hybrid classes, and only physical classes would be held from April 1.
The move comes following a dip in Covid-19 cases. The national capital recorded 460 fresh infections and two deaths on Friday. With 56,984 Covid-19 tests conducted on Friday, the positivity rate dropped to 0.81 per cent, according to the city health department.
Meanwhile, parts of Delhi witnessed a hailstorm accompanied by lightning and thunder on Friday night. The rainfall occurred due to the western disturbance affecting northwest India. On Saturday, too, the city is likely to receive light to moderate rainfall, along with isolated thunderstorms and lightning. From January 1 to February 25, Delhi has recorded 95.7 mm of rainfall, which is far in excess of the 28.5 mm of rainfall that is considered normal for this period.
Delhi on Saturday recorded 440 Covid-19 positive cases. The positivity rate hence stood at 0.83 per cent. Number of deaths reported from the national captial in the last 24 hours is 2. 
Delhi government on Saturday said people travelling in private four wheelers will no longer be challaned for not wearing masks. The order released by the administration will come into effect from Monday. The fine for not wearing masks in public places and not abiding by social distancing norms has also been reduced from Rs 2,000 to Rs 500.
Action taken by Delhi police in last 24 hours.
#DelhiPoliceDiaries

Action taken by #DelhiPolice in last 24 hours pic.twitter.com/rVEU3Rq3jY
At least 318 police personnel were suspended, and the names of 469 police officials added to the ‘doubtful integrity’ list last year by the Delhi Police, as per data from the vigilance branch.
Special CP (Vigilance) Nuzhat Hassan said the vigilance unit maintains a close watch on the activities of officers and men in order to enforce integrity and probity in the ranks. “As and when any officer comes to adverse notice, he or she was brought under the doubtful integrity list, which means instant debarment from sensitive assignments unit, and requires subsequent clearance. In 2021, 469 police officials were added to the doubtful integrity list. The doubtful integrity cases of 644 police personnel were also reviewed, and it was decided to continue their names on doubtful integrity list on administrative grounds,” she said. Read more here
The minimum temperature recorded early on Saturday was 13.4 degrees Celsius. Since February 19, the minimum temperature has remained above 10 degrees Celsius, IMD data indicates.
The minimum temperature is likely to remain above 10 degrees over the next six days as well. On Saturday, the maximum temperature is likely to settle at 25 degrees Celsius. Over the next six days, the maximum temperature is likely to range from 24 degrees to 28 degrees Celsius. At 8.30 am on Saturday, the temperature was 15.4 degrees Celsius.
With rainfall and strong winds, the AQI is likely to improve and reach the ‘moderate’ category on Saturday, going by a forecast issued by the Air Quality Early Warning System on Friday. On Friday, the AQI was 286, in the ‘poor’ category.
Light to moderate rainfall, along with isolated thunderstorms and lightning, are a possibility over Delhi over the next 24 hours, according to an update by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) at 8 am on Saturday. Strong surface winds of around 25 to 35 kmph are also on the forecast for Delhi today. A western disturbance lies over north Pakistan, bringing rainfall to northwest India.
From January 1 to February 25, Delhi has recorded 95.7 mm of rainfall, which is far in excess of the 28.5 mm of rainfall that is considered normal for this period. Among the districts, Central Delhi has received the highest amount of rainfall during this period, with 154.1 mm, followed by East Delhi with 109.8 mm. Read more here
Opposing a petition seeking grant of ex-gratia amount of Rs 1 crore for the kin of an 87-year-old private doctor who died of Covid in April last year, the Delhi government Friday told the High Court that he had decided to see patients out of his own will, even when the Union Ministry of Health had asked the people of a particular age group to be careful.
The government argued that people’s money has to be spent with care and caution and Rs 1 crore is a huge sum. The scheme is an “insurance” for the doctors who did not have the choice to say no to the job, it said. Read more here
Hearing a case in connection with an alleged gangster being shot in the leg, which a Delhi court had earlier called “staged”, the court on Friday said it expects the Delhi Police Commissioner to give due regard to Supreme Court guidelines on registration of FIR and rights of a person in custody.
The gangster, Rohit Gehlot, had earlier told the court he was picked up from his home on November 1, 2021 by four officers to meet the DCP, taken to some flats in Dwarka and later to Uttam Nagar, where he was shot in the leg after police blindfolded him. Mahender Singh Manral reports
Traders, shopkeepers, restaurateurs, banquet hall and cinema theatre owners welcomed the Delhi Disaster Management Authority’s (DDMA) move to lift night curfew and all other restrictions such as limited seating capacity and timings. 
The DDMA on Friday removed all restrictions that were imposed on December 26 in view of increasing Covid cases. With the positivity rate remaining below 1% for the last few weeks, the government withdrew all restrictions. The relaxations will come into force from Monday, February 28.  Read more 
Parents and friends of Indian students stranded in Ukraine Friday gathered near Shantipath to protest outside the Russian Embassy, demanding that the students are brought back by the Indian government at once. However, they were stopped from assembling outside the Embassy. Read more 
The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) on Friday decided to lift all Covid-19 restrictions in the capital, including the night curfew and 50 per cent capacity rule at restaurants and bars. The restrictions are likely to be lifted from Monday onwards. All schools will begin physical classes from April 1. 
The Delhi High Court Friday refused to interfere with the Centre’s decision to evict various prominent artistes from their government accommodations in the national capital, saying that no right stood conferred on them to occupy the public premises indefinitely.
The court granted them two months to “exit the premises with dignity” and restrained the authorities from taking any coercive action against them in the meantime, while dismissing the petitions of the petitioners. Read more 
About 1,300 km of roads in the city, maintained by the Public Works Department (PWD), will be free of potholes within the next month, said Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia Friday.
Sisodia, who took over as PWD minister on Thursday, said that the government will soon launch a PWD mobile app where commuters can file complaints about potholes and poor infrastructure of roads. Read more
In one of the scenes in director Mahua Chauhan’s 120-minute musical, Babasaheb: The Grand Musical, the stage of Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium’s weightlifting auditorium is turned into Pune’s Yerwada Jail to showcase the enactment of a conversation between Mahatma Gandhi and Dr BR Ambedkar.
In a clash of ideologies, both are seen to reinforce their own interpretation of the concept of the complicated Indian caste system. Read more 
Delhi reported 460 fresh Covid-19 cases and two deaths on Friday. With 56,984 Covid-19 tests conducted on Friday, the positivity rate dropped to 0.81 per cent. 
Parents and friends of Indian students stranded in Ukraine Friday gathered near Shantipath to protest outside the Russian Embassy, demanding that the students are brought back by the Indian government at once. However, they were stopped from assembling outside the Embassy.
In the evening, a delegation of three was allowed by ACP Suma Madda to submit a memorandum at the Ministry of External Affairs, provided the crowd disperse. (Read More)
With sirens going off through Thursday, third-year medical student from Kharkiv National Medical University Yashdeep Bidhan took refuge in a metro station near his residence. He was among thousands of people, including children, who slept fitfully at the metro station through the night.
When things seemed calm at 8 am, Bidhan ventured out. “I came back home. I wanted to charge my phone.” Within a couple of hours, he heard a loud boom and his windows started shaking. He rushed back to the metro station immediately. 
“We could hear echoes of the blasts inside. One of my friends, who was at another metro station, saw a shell right outside when he was heading home in the morning. The university should have allowed us to leave earlier,” he said. Third and sixth year students of medical universities in Ukraine were scheduled to have an offline examination which, if they missed, they would have to repeat a year. (Read More)
Schools in Delhi have welcomed the decision to move classes completely offline but also say that it should happen earlier than April 1.
On Friday, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority decided that schools may do away with the hybrid mode of teaching-learning and move completely offline from April 1, which will coincide with the start of the next academic session. More than two years after the start of the pandemic, this will be the first time that Delhi will be looking at taking this crucial step towards ‘normalcy’.
With the reopening of schools in February, schools were still required to obtain parental consent from students attending offline classes and parents had the option of not sending their children. While most schools are welcoming the decision to move completely offline, they are also questioning why it has been scheduled for more than a month later. (Read More)
Taking note of the damage being done to trees by government agencies while carrying out works on public roads, the Delhi High Court Friday issued notices in a contempt case to the CEO of BSES Rajdhani Power Limited, Engineer-in-Chief of the PWD, other officials of the forest department, and the SHO of Chittaranjan Park police station.
“No messing around the trees anymore! How can you take the city back 20 years? Left to me, I would have given the directions for the filing of FIRs against these officers apart from contempt proceedings. It is absolutely callous. It is criminal. The damage is immense,” said Justice Najmi Waziri, while hearing a case alleging that roots of trees have been dug up and excavated at Bipin Chandra Pal Marg last month.
The court was hearing a petition filed by the New Delhi Nature Society through its advocate Aditya N Prasad. (Read More)
Traffic piled up at Akshardham on Friday as the capital witnessed rains and thunderstorms. (Express Photo: Praveen Khanna)
All PWD roads to be free of potholes within a month, says Sisodia
About 1,300 km of roads in the city, maintained by the Public Works Department (PWD), will be free of potholes within the next month, said Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia Friday.
Sisodia, who took over as PWD minister on Thursday, said that the government will soon launch a PWD mobile app where commuters can file complaints about potholes and poor infrastructure of roads.
‘It is absolutely callous…criminal’: Delhi HC on damage to trees while digging on roads
Taking note of the damage being done to trees by government agencies while carrying out works on public roads, the Delhi High Court Friday issued notices in a contempt case to the CEO of BSES Rajdhani Power Limited, Engineer-in-Chief of the PWD, other officials of the forest department, and the SHO of Chittaranjan Park police station.
“No messing around the trees anymore! How can you take the city back 20 years? Left to me, I would have given the directions for the filing of FIRs against these officers apart from contempt proceedings. It is absolutely callous. It is criminal. The damage is immense,” said Justice Najmi Waziri, while hearing a case alleging that roots of trees have been dug up and excavated at Bipin Chandra Pal Marg last month.

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