TheIndian EXPRESS LATE CITY, 16 PAGES, KOLKATA `5.00/EX-KOLKATA `6.00 (`12 IN NORTH EAST STATES & ANDAMAN) ● MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2018 ● WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA JOURNALISM OF COURAGE SIKH YATRIS IN PAKISTAN India protests: Pak blocking consular access to pilgrims Pak denies charge, says facts ‘distorted, misrepresented’ BUSINESS AS USUAL SHUBHAJIT ROY BY UNNY NEW DELHI, APRIL 15 CAPITAL PROTEST At a protest against the rape and murder in Kathua and rape in Unnao , in New Delhi on Sunday. Abhinav Saha 59% of LIC cancer policies sold in Kerala, Maharashtra, Gujarat, TN GEORGE MATHEW MUMBAI, APRIL 15 FIVE MONTHS after the launch of its unique cancer cover, with a sum assured of up to Rs 50 lakh, Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) has sold 88,750 policies across India. And data shows that just four states — Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Kerala — accounted for 58.5 per cent of these cancer policies sold during this period. The west zone, comprising Maharashtra and Gujarat, have taken 26,280 policies. South zone, comprising Tamil Nadu and Kerala, have taken 25,670 policies,accountingforthemaximum number of cancer cover policies sold so far. Responding to queries from The Indian Express, LIC said in a statement: “As on date we have sold 88,750 policies with a first premium income of Rs 42.68 crore.” Incidentally,thefirstever state-level disease burden study released last November showed that Tamil Nadu, Kerala, MaharashtraandGujarat,which are placed higher on the development ladder, have become hubsof non-communicablediseases, including cancer. According to a new paper published last month in the medicaljournalLancetOncology, the burden of cancer in India is over1.5millionnewcases,andis predictedtonearlydoubleinthe next 20 years with age-adjusted mortality rates of 64.5 per 1,00,000 people. The study also pointed out that fewer than 30 per cent survive five years or more after diagnosis. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 EXPRESS NETWORK ● JAITLEY TAKES OATH AS RS MEMBER, PAGE 5 REPORTS, P 6 Pre-poll violence in Birbhum: ‘We were warned that we should buy widow’s sari for our wives’ ESHA ROY BIRBHUM, APRIL 15 ON APRIL 3, a day after the State Election Commission announced the start of filing nominations for next month’s panchayat polls, candidates from 12 villages under Mohammad Bazar block in Birbhum district hurried to their local Block Development Office (BDO), only to find it surrounded by “several hundred” Trinamool workers. “Around 300 TMC workers hadblockedtheoffice.Asweapproached to file our nominations, they chased us away,” says BJP district president Ramkrishna Roy. The party’s candidates tried again the next day, and the next, only to be turnedawayagain.“Wethendecided that all workers and supporters would go together on April 7,” adds Roy. BJP worker and daily wager Nakul Roy and party candidate from Rampur gram panchayat Mallika Kora, in Birbhum’s Chuamali village. Partha Paul On the morning of April 7, as many as 14,000 members of the OppositiongatheredatSeorakuri near Mohammad Bazaar. “Everyonefromeveryvillagewas there. Most of us were BJP sup- portersandcandidates.ButCPM brothers joined us as well. We started marching toward the block office. The police stopped us at several points. When they stopped us at Seorakuri, we broke the police barricade and marchedon,’’saysNakulRoy(29) of Chuamali,aremotevillagethat borders Jharkhand. Roy’s aunt is a gram panchayat candidate from the village. The clashes that followed at Mohammad Bazaar were recorded, and have since gone viral on social media. The villagers clashed with TMC workers and police. Thousands of them descended on Mohammad Bazaar with lathis and large rocks. BJP block-in-charge Lakshiram Hemram was among those who marched toward the BDO office that day. “The police said we came from Jharkhand, and called us Maoists. Do we have ‘Maoist’ written on our foreheads? As adivasis, most of us keep bows and arrows at home for hunting. But we didn’t use them.” CONTINUED ON PAGE 3 3 minors found hanging Top broadcaster, popular website and official letter, from tree in Barmer, cops say suicide, girls’ dodgy T20 league had it all families allege murder NIHAL KOSHIE NEW DELHI, APRIL 15 DEEP MUKHERJEE SWAROOP KA TALA (BARMER), APRIL 15 SURROUNDEDBYavastexpanse of sand and a thatched hut nestled between its roots, a Khejri tree stands amidst the barren landscape of Swaroop Ka Tala, a remotevillageinBarmerdistrict. Villagers who ride motorcycles or pickup trucks through a narrow strip of road leading to Chohatan, the nearest town, throw quick, furtive glances towards the tree before speeding away. Two days ago, the village woke up to the sight of three bodies hanging from a branch of the tree — two Dalit girls and a Muslim boy, all minors. Their deaths have left many unanswered questions. “MydaughterShanti(13)and niece Madhu (12) were sleeping withusinourhouseonThursday night. We woke up after midnight to find that they The spot where the bodies were found. Deep Mukherjee were missing; their bodies were foundonFridaymorning.Weare certainthattheywerekidnapped, and then raped and murdered,” saysBhairuMeghwal(41),father of one of the girls. However, he fails to explain how the two girls were forcibly taken from their house even as other family members were sleeping near them. As people from the Meghwal community huddle near the house of Kishan Meghwal, the CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 IT HAD roped in an established sports channel for live telecast, tied up with a popular cricket website for real-time ball-byballupdatesandobtainedrecognitionfromBCCI’saffiliatedstate unit. The organisers of the Twenty20 Rajputana Premier League (RPL) had it all covered. Until the Jaipur police, acting on a tip-off from the BCCI, exposed the matchfixing rot beneath the cricketing glitter. Investigatorssaytie-upswith broadcaster Neo Sports and sports website cricbuzz.com, and a letter from a Rajasthan CricketAssociation(RCA)official gavetheorganiserslegitimacy— and helped them broadbase their betting racket.Neo Sports was once the rights holders for Indian cricket. A majority stake in Cricbuzz is held by Times Internet, a digital venture of the Times of India Group. When contacted by The Indian Express, Neo Sports and High-profile tie-ups helped league expand reach cricbuzz.com said they didn’t find anything amiss when they committed to a collaboration with RPL. Harish Thawani, non-executive chairman of Neo Sports Broadcast Pvt Ltd, put the onus on BCCI administrators to monitor such micro leagues. Pankaj Chhaparwal, CEO, cricbuzz.com, said they signed up with RPL after the organisers showed them a letter from the RCA endorsing the league. RCA honorary secretary R S Nandhu acknowledged that he had written the letter following arequestfromtheorganisersbut saidthesanctionwaswithdrawn CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 INDIA HAS lodged a strong protest with Islamabad for preventingvisitingSikhpilgrims from meeting Indian diplomats and consular teams in Pakistan. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA),inastatementonSunday, said the Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan was also“compelledtoreturn”while he was on his way to meet the pilgrims. This comes weeks after New Delhi and Islamabad decided to resolve the crisis arising out of harassment and intimidation of diplomats and their families. “A jatha of around 1,800 Sikh yatris has been travelling in Pakistan from April 12, under a bilateral agreement on facilitating visits to religious shrines,” said the MEA. “A standard practice has been that the Indian High Commission’s consular/ protocol team is attached with visitingpilgrims,toperformconsular and protocol duties, like helping out in medical or family emergencies.However,thisyear, the consular team has been denied access to Indian Sikh pilgrims. The team could not meetthepilgrimsontheirarrival at Wagah Railway Station on April 12. Similarly, it was denied entryintoGurdwaraPanjaSahib Sikh pilgrims at Gurdwara Panja Sahib in Pakistan. AP on April 14, for a scheduled meetingwithpilgrimsthere.The High Commission was thus prevented from performing basic consular and protocol duties for Indian citizens,” it said. The MEA said that on Saturday, the Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan, who wasscheduledtovisitGurdwara Panja Sahib at the invitation of the Chairman of the Evacuee TrustPropertyBoard(ETPB),was “suddenly asked to return while en route to the shrine, for unspecified‘security’reasons”.“The HighCommissioner,whowasto greet Indian pilgrims on the occasion of Baisakhi, was thus compelled to return without meeting Indian citizens,” it said.The MEA said that India has lodged a strong protest with Pakistan against this “inexplicable diplomatic discourtesy”, pointingoutthattheseincidents UP cop on tape warning gangster of encounter: ‘manage’ BJP leaders MANISH SAHU LUCKNOW, APRIL 15 THE UP government Sunday ordered a probe into an encounter in Jhansi between policeandagangsterafteranaudio clip surfaced on social media purportedlyof anofficeralerting the “target” — and asking him to strikeadealwithtwoBJPleaders. The government suspended Mauranipur police station inchargeSuneetKumarSingh,who is allegedly heard on the clip tipping off gangster Lekhraj Singh Yadav about the encounter. In the purported tape, Singh is also heard asking Yadav to “manage”RajeevSinghParichha, BJP MLA from Babina seat in Jhansi, and Sanjay Dubey, BJP district president. In the clip, the officer is also heard boasting: “Don’t know how many I have killed and dumped” (read transcript, page 2). Noonewasinjuredintheencounter that took place Friday evening at Basari village under the Mauranipur station limits. Police claimed that all accused escaped from the spot. The tape has emerged at a time when UP’s BJP government, under Yogi Adityanath, has courted controversy with a spate of encounters since coming to power on March 20, 2017. According to police records, 48 criminalshavebeenkilledin1,755 48 KILLED IN 1 YR UP Police data on encounters since BJP came to power on March 20, 2017: 1,755 Encounters 48 Killed 430 Injured 4,270 Arrested KILLINGS BY REGION: 5 Central UP 6 Eastern UP 36 Western UP 1 Chitrakoot (Bundelkhand) POLICE CASUALTIES 4 deaths, 329 injured encounters since then (see box). When contacted by The Indian Express, senior police officers said Singh admitted that the voice on the purported clip was his. They described him as a discreditedofficerwhowasonce sacked for acts of misconduct before he rejoined on the basis of a court order. They said that Singh was trying to “extort” money from Yadav. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 ● PAGE ONE ANCHOR SOON, OVER 14,000 COURTS WILL BE A FEW CLICKS AWAY TRACKING CHANGE» EVERY MONDAY For all Change stories, log on to www.indianexpress.com/change Witness Change? Write to us at email@example.com KAUNAIN SHERIFF M NEW DELHI, APRIL 15 EIGHT YEARS ago, a court room in east Delhi’s Karkardooma lower judiciary complex witnessed an unusual event. On the dais, instead of a judge, was a Nearly 500 covered, how national grid is transforming justice delivery at lowest level touchscreen. All the files in that court had been digitised. And a video conferencing facility was installedtorecordevidencefrom jails, forensic labs and hospitals. Today, this experiment to fast-track the disposal of pendingcaseshasreached488district court complexes and 342 jails. And, according to the Union Law Ministry,14,249courtsarebeing made ready under its E-courts Mission Mode Project — all of them will get computer hardware, local area networks and standard application software.The challenge is huge — over 2.68 crore cases are still pending in various courts (see box on page 1). But the change is visible, say judges, officials and legal researchers. These courts have been connected to the National Judicial Data Grid (NJDG). And, apart from the obvious benefits of transparency and real-time tracking,thee-movehassharply reduced the time taken to process a case, especially tran- ON GRID: 2.68 CR CASES PENDING TOP 5 CASES PENDING Uttar Pradesh 24.12% Maharashtra 12.66% Bihar 6.04 % West Bengal 6.77% Gujarat 5.94% FASTEST DISPOSAL* Kerala 120 Karnataka 98 Himachal Pradesh 88 Haryana 66 Assam 62 (*Proportionat to courts; cases disposed of by one court in a month) scription of evidence. The NJDG now finds a mention in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business 2018 report. The gridhas“madeitpossibletogenerate case management reports on local courts, thereby making it easier to enforce contracts”, states the report. Butmoreimportantly,sayresearchers, it has thrown up realtime data that shows the patterns in which justice is delivered at the lowest level. For instance: ■ The courts of the chief judicial magistrate in Allahabad district have the maximum number of cases (41,101) pending for more than ten years; a family court in Uttar Pradesh’s Chitrakoot has the least number of cases (2) pending for more than ten years. ■ 15.8 per cent of pending cases in Andhra Pradesh are those filed by women, the highest for any state. The Guntur district court has 9,066 cases filed by women pending — the court with the highest pendency under this category in the state. ■ 20.77 per cent of pending cases filed by senior citizens are from Maharashtra — the largest share in the country. The Pune district and sessions court has the maximum number of pending cases (3,069) under this category. ■ Haryana has the least percentage(0.09%)of casespending for more than 10 years; at the CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 constituteaclearviolationof the Vienna Convention of 1961, the bilateral Protocol to visit Religious Shrines, 1974 and the Code of Conduct (for the treatment of diplomatic/consular personnel in India and Pakistan) of 1992, recently reaffirmed by both countries. Meanwhile, the Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry spokesman rejected the allegations as “baseless”, and said it was “deeply regrettable” that facts had been “completely distorted and misrepresented”. According to the statement issued by Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry, the Secretary of the Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) had extended an invitation to the Indian High Commissioner to attend the Baisakhi and Khalsa Janamdin function at the Gurdwara Panja Sahib on Saturday. The statement said travel permission was promptly granted. “However, in the run-up to the main function, the ETPB authorities noticed strong resentment among segments of Sikh yatris, gathered there from differentpartsof theworld,protesting the release in India of some film on Baba Guru Nanak Devji. Considering an emotionally charged environment and the possibility of any untoward situation, the ETPB authorities CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Govt orders RoC report on Deepak Kochhar, Dhoot firms KHUSHBOO NARAYAN NEW DELHI, APRIL 15 THE GOVERNMENT has told the Registrar of Companies (RoC) to prepare a report on the firms controlled by Deepak Kochhar, husbandof ICICIBankManaging Director and CEO Chanda Kochhar, and Venugopal Dhoot, promoter of Videocon Group, following allegations of a possiblequidproquointheRs3,250crore loan granted by ICICI Bank to Videocon Group in 2012. The RoC’s technical report will look into the books of account and analyse the transactions carried out by the companies. Sources said the RoC is expected to file its report in six weeks,andwilldecideif thecase should be referred to the multidisciplinary Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) for further investigation. Under Section 206 of the Companies Act, 2013, the RoC can call for information and inspect documents of a company. Accordingtothenorms,afterthe inspection of books of account, the registrar needs to submit a writtenreporttothecentralgovernment. The report may recommend further investigation, along with the reasons. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 13 WORLD GUNMEN TARGETPAK SCJUDGE’S RESIDENCE AIRSTRIKES ON SYRIA AN ACT OF AGGRESSION, SAYS BASHAR AL-ASSAD
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