LATE CITY, 22 PAGES, AHMEDABAD, `4.00 ● SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 3, 2018 ● WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM TheIndian EXPRESS DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA JOURNALISM OF COURAGE DAY AFTER BUDGET: RS 4.58 LAKH CRORE OF INVESTOR WEALTH WIPED OFF 10 10% tax, fiscal slip: Market wakes THE EDITORIAL PAGE Inequality is real, don’t deny By LUCAS CHANCEL & THOMAS PIKETTY up rattled, slides over 800 points Loya death: Plea says judges differ, SC says will see evidence EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, FEBRUARY 2 THE PETITIONERS demanding an independent probe into the death of CBI Special Judge B H Loya in 2014 claimed in the Supreme Court Friday that there were contradictions in the statements of four judges recorded by Maharashtra police in the matter. A bench of Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud told senior advocate Dushyant Dave appearing for the Bombay Lawyers Association that it was “considering the evidence” put forth by him. However, the bench said that the way “sometimes individuals including some good ones react in a calamity, someone else may feel they could have reacted differently, but their conduct cannot be said to have a bearing on the truth”. The bench made the comments when Dave sought to question the conduct of the judges who were said to have accompanied Loya to hospital. Dave claimed that “there are very serious contradictions on the face of the record”. He alleged that none of the four judges had accompanied Loya to the hospital the night he died. According to official records, Loya, 48, died of a heart attack in Nagpur on December 1, 2014, a day after he attended the wedding and reception of the daughter of fellow judge Swapna Joshi, who is now a judge in the Bombay High Court. Dave said police records show that Dr Prashant Rathi, who claimed to be a relative of Loya, had informed police about the death of the judge. “Why CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Sensex plunges on move to tax long-term capital gains, cash flow to mutual funds set to come down A Maldivian opposition supporter faces off with police in Male on Friday as clashes erupt after the court verdict. AP GEORGE MATHEW MUMBAI, FEBRUARY 2 A DAYafter the Union Budget announced 10 per cent long-term capital gains tax on equities, and concerns over the fiscal slippage and macro-economic conditions unnerved investors, Dalal Street witnessed mayhem Friday with the benchmark Sensex plunging 840 points. The bloodbath wiped off Rs 458,000 crore of investor wealth as market capitalisation, or the market value of all listed shares, plummeted to Rs 148.54 lakh crore in a single day. Worried investors dumped stocks across the board — they were also upset with the proposal of 10 per cent tax on distributed income from equityoriented mutual funds. Investors read the projected fiscal deficit of 3.5 per cent of GDP for the current fiscal against the earlier target of 3.2 per cent and 3.3 per cent for the next fiscal and rising bond yields as deterioration in the government’s finances, raising the spectre of a spike in interest rates. The Sensex crashed 839.91 points, or 2.34 per cent, to close the day at 35,066.75 as investors cut their equity positions. The broader NSE Nifty fell below the 10,800-mark by plunging 256.30 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 BUSINESS AS USUAL BY UNNY Maldives back on boil afer apex court frees Nasheed, Opp leaders I believe it’s India’s ocean, says Nasheed, as Delhi asks Male to follow order freeing political prisoners JYOTI MALHOTRA & SHUBHAJIT ROY On Dalal Street in Mumbai Friday. Worried investors dumped stocks across the board. Pradip Das NEW DELHI, FEBRUARY 2 RISE & FALL DAY AFTER BUDGETS 2008-18 ( IN PERCENTAGE) -5.12 0.9 2.09 3.5 -1.1 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 -0.56 -1.37 0.33 3.38 2013 AGRICULTURE 2014 2015 2016 0.3 -2.34 2017 2018 HEALTH Budget promises MSP I-Day launch goal for 50% above cost, doesn’t health cover scheme define which cost ABANTIKA GHOSH NEW DELHI, FEBRUARY 2 HARISH DAMODARAN NEW DELHI, FEBRUARY 2 THE UNION Budget for 2018-19 has promised to fix minimum support prices (MSP) for crops to guarantee farmers at least 50 per cent returns on production costs. This is quite similar to the original recommendation of the M S Swaminathan-headed National Commission on Farmers (which called for MSPs to be “at least 50% more than the weighted average cost of production”) and the BJP’s 2014 Lok Sabha Election Manifesto (which talked of ensuring farmers “minimum 50% profits over the cost of production”). But whether it is the Budget, the Swaminathan formula or the BJP manifesto, none of them has quite defined what really constitutes “cost of production”. And therein lies the nub. The question assumes importance because the Commission CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 THE NITI Aayog is working towards a launch on Independence Day of the government’s latest flagship National Health Protection Scheme, which was announced in the Union Budget Thursday. Top officials in the Aayog said that Gandhi Jayanti, on October 2, was the “upper limit” deadline for the formal launch while the fullscale rollout, subject to the pace of work by states, is expected to take place in about one-and-a-half years. Consultations with states are expected to start next week. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Not what the doctor ordered A massive publicly financed health insurance scheme cannot substitute for public healthcare. THE IDEAS PAGE 11 Budget Postcard From Betul: A DG in UP pledges to build Baby’s death, Missing Stretcher Ram temple in Ayodhya earliest MILIND GHATWAI BETUL, FEBRUARY 2 ON THE day the Union government announced the ambitious National Health Protection Scheme (NHPS), Neelu Verma sat inconsolable in a Madhya Pradesh government hospital antenatal care (ANC) ward. On Wednesday, Neelu (25), in labour at the time, lost her baby in the Betul district hospital after she was denied a stretcher and forced to walk to the ANC ward. She was bodily lifted off the ground by hospital attendants and had walked a few steps before she delivered her baby. Neelu is a trained nurse 3 The grieving parents. Milind Ghatwai herself. She is unable to comprehend the post-mortem report that puts the cause of death as “still birth’’ not from the fall to the ground. Surrounded by newborns and happy mothers in the ANC ward, where each crying baby reminded Neelu of her loss, she chose to leave the hospital on Friday with several sutures still fresh from surgery. Even before her nightmare in Betul, Neelu was referred to the district hospital by the community health centre in Ghodadongri, where she claimed no doctor was on duty. The government in New Delhi may have announced the CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE LUCKNOW, FEBRUARY 2 AN IPS officer heading the Uttar Pradesh Home Guard has been captured on video taking a pledge to work for the construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya “as soon as possible”. The video comes days after the state government drew flak over the failure to control communal clashes in Kasganj, where a 22-year-old man was killed. The video, purportedly shot during an event at Lucknow University on January 28, shows Surya Kumar Shukla, Director General, Home Guard Headqua- UP Home Guard Director General S K Shukla (second from left) takes the pledge at a Lucknow University event rters, as saying: “Aaj is karyakram ke dauran, hum sab ye sankalp lete hain ke jaldse jald Ram Mandir ka bhavya nirmaan ho... Jai Shri Ram (Today, at this programme, all of us take a pledge that the Ram temple is made as soon as CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 IN A significant shift perceived to be in favour of the Opposition in the Maldives, India on Friday leaned on the Abdulla Yameen government and asked them to abide by the country’s Supreme Court’s order to release all nine political prisoners, including former President Mohamed Nasheed, and reinstate 12 members of Parliament who had been stripped of their posts. But, almost 24 hours later, the Maldives government had not acted on the order. Maldives Democratic Party’s international spokesperson Abdul Ghafoor told The Indian Expresson Friday night over telephone from Colombo, “Yameen is dragging his feet... it has been 24 hours, but there has been no move to implement the order yet.” He said Yameen is likely to leave for Singapore. Nasheed, who is also in Sri Lanka, welcomed the court order and said President Yameen must resign. He was trying to see if authorities in Mafushi jail would release a bag of clothes and some books he had had to CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Ex-student torches MSU head office out of ‘frustration’ Srilamanthula Chandramohan had come under right wing attack in 2007 EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE VADODARA, FEBRUARY 2 ON FRIDAY, when Maharaja Sayajirao University (MSU) of Vadodara received three awards from the government of Gujarat at the Education fair, a controversy from the past returned to haunt the university. Srilamanthula Chandramohan, a former Masters Student of the Faculty of Fine Arts, set afire a cabin at the head office of the MSU on Friday. Chandramohan, who arrived on campus armed with petrol and a toy gun around 5 pm, told the Sayajigunj police he was “frustrated” about not having received his Masters degree for the last 11 years. He has been booked for arson. Around 5 pm on Friday, Chandramohan arrived at the MSU head office. Within minutes, flames erupted from the windows of the ground floor. As chaos ensued, security guards stationed within the campus responded to the alarm raised by the staff—mostly clerical and accounting staff— who tried to save important files and their own lives. The guards caught The cabin at MSU head office was gutted after Srilamanthula Chandramohan set it on fire. Bhupendra Rana hold of Chandramohan, who seemed more than willing to be detained. By the time the fire tenders rushed to the spot to douse the flames, most of the University’s ground floor had been completed gutted. including the cabins of the Vice Chancellor, Manager and the Accountancy department. According to University officials, several computers, files and even cash in the drawers of the accounts department has been reduced to ashes. The Sayajigunj police, which CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 ● PAGE ONE ANCHOR GUJARAT ANKLESHWAR : ACTIVISTS NOTICE TO ENVIRONMENT AND FOREST MINISTRY OVER ‘CONTEMPT OF SC ORDER’ AT GIDC UNIT ● Gondal groundnut warehouse fire: CID forms SIT to probe ● Padmaavat release plea withdrawn AT HOLY TRIVENI SANGAM IN GUJARAT, ‘NARMADA IS ALMOST DEAD’ SATISH JHA CHANDOD (VADODARA DISTRICT), FEBRUARY 2 “I CAN count on my fingertips the number of people who came to drink tea at my stall,” says 36year-old Shakuntala Bhatt, who has been running the tea stall for the past 11 years since her husband died. “For the past two months, there is not enough business to feed my two growing sons,” she says. Her decrepit tea stall is situated at the entry of Malhar Rao Ghat at Chandod village, the confluence of Narmada, Orsang and NARMADA RATIONING THE LIFELINE AN EXPRESS SERIES the mythical Saraswati - considered the holiest place among the Hindus in Gujarat for conducting the final rites for the dead. Sitting idle at her tea stall is a 70-year-old priest, Bhogilal Keshavlal Joshi. “I am hardly occupied these days. A couple of years ago, I would perform eight to ten rituals in a day, but now even in one month, I am not able to perform that many rituals,” says Joshi, G u j a r a t Kevadia Vadodara Chandod village Narmada river who has been conducting rituals for the visitors since he was a child. “The reason,” he pauses. “Narmada mritpray ho gayi hai (Narmada river is almost dead).” From the tea stall, as one walks towards the ghat where Hindus immerse ashes of those dead to attain “moksha”, Gujarat’s lifeline, Narmada’s riverbed has been dredged along Malhar Rao Ghat to make a water channel for the boats to ferry pilgrims, at Chandod in Dabhoi. Bhupendra Rana the Narmada river, is not more than 25-feet wide channel, as the rest of its breadth as far as the eye can see in the horizon, is dried up. At the source of water, dozens of boats are lined up in barely knee-deep water. Scores of people with tonsured heads are wading in or getting down from the boats to reach the “Triveni Sangam” - the confluence of the “rivers”. The channel to help the boats float for ferrying pilgrims has been created by dredging the sand in the dry riverbed. The sight is in stark contrast to the pictures of a gushing river captioned “Chandod-Narmada Ghat” on the Gujarat tourism website. Famous as a pilgrimage site, it has six major ghats, including Badrinarayan Ghat, Nanderia Ghat, Marwadi Ghat, Chakratirth Ghat, Kapileshwar Mahadev Ghat, Jivan Nath Ghat, Sangam Ghat, Somnath Ghat, among others. There are over a dozen temples that include Kapileshwar Mahadev, Lakshmi Narayan, Hateshwar, Swami Narayan, among others. Sixty-two-year-old Ranjanben Patel has come from Porbandar, about 500 km away, along with her three sons, to immerse ashes of her husband who CONTINUED ON PAGE 2
Indian Express Limited is an Indian news media publishing company. It publishes several widely circulated dailies, including The Indian Express and The Financial Express in English, the Loksatta in Marathi and the Jansatta in Hindi.