LATE CITY, 20 PAGES, AHMEDABAD, `4.00 ● TUESDAY, AUGUST 28, 2018 ● WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM TheIndian EXPRESS DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA JOURNALISM OF COURAGE GREENFIELD INSTITUTIONS 12 Eminence tag: HRD and PMO disagreed on crucial issues EXPLAINED Accountability, expertise, money and land: PMO eased HRD’s tough terms RITIKA CHOPRA Biofuel in jets: What works, what doesn’t NEW DELHI, AUGUST 27 ECONOMY, Page 15 INDIA’S FIRST BIOFUEL-RUN AIRCRAFT THE GOLDEN ARM Neeraj Chopra strikes gold for India in javelin at the Asian Games in Jakarta, Monday. Reuters REPORT, PAGE 18 All parties barring BJP want election expenditure capped KRISHN KAUSHIK NEW DELHI, AUGUST 27 ALL MAJOR parties barring the BJP pushed for a cap on electionrelated expenses by parties, saying only this can ensure a level playing field. It is learnt that the issue of funding of political parties and whether there should be a limit on the amount of money that parties can spend during an election became one of the key discussion points at an all-party meeting organised Monday by the Election Commission of India (ECI). BJP general secretary Bhupendra Yadav, who, along with Union Minister J P Nadda, represented the ruling party at the meeting, told The Indian Express that since all political parties have to declare their expenditure in their income tax fil- Dust, PM2.5: Delhi air best in 3 years, says pollution board Graded action plan and better coordination helped: CPCB SOWMIYA ASHOK CEC Rawat at the all-party meeting, Monday. PTI ings, “usmein kisi prakaar ki capping nahi lagai jaani chahiye (there should be no cap on that)”. Yadav said elections should be based on issues, and not on caste lines or “muscle power” or “criminal power”. The parties, he said, “should not be restricted”, rather “usmein zyaada se zyaada prachaar karne ka avsar aur suvidha deni chahiye (parties should be given more opportunities and facilities to advertise)”. He said there should CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Two more get life term in Godhra train fire case, three acquitted by court NEW DELHI, AUGUST 27 BETWEEN JANUARY 1 and August 26, there were 118 days when the air quality index (AQI) in Delhi hovered between satisfactory or moderate; 120 days were designated between poor and severe and a sharp spike in particulate emissions was recorded in June. This is according to data released by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) Monday, which showed that the air quality in 2018, so far, has improved compared to 2017 and 2016. CPCB officials said that the improvement in air quality fol- 13 WORLD STRESSED PILOT CAUSED NEPAL CRASH MONTHLY COMPARATIVE VALUES OF PM 2.5 250 Concentration in µg/m3 ● SPICEJET OPERATES ■ 2016 ■ 2017 ■ 2018 200 150 100 50 0 Jan Feb Mar DEATH BY BREATH lowed a slew of measures initiated last year including the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) and better coordination April May Jun Jul between multiple agencies in the National Capital. The 118 days of satisfactory to moderate air quality in 2018 were five more than 2017 when 113 days ranged from good to moderate while only 74 days showed a similar trend in 2016. Days marked poor, very poor and severe on the AQI have also consistently decreased over the last three years - 153 in 2016, 125 in 2017 and 120 so far in 2018. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Board will probe fresh revelations of IPL investigator: Vinod Rai THE SELECTION of Reliance Foundation’s non-existent Jio Institute among India’s six Institutions of Eminence (IoEs) triggered a political firestorm with the Opposition accusing the NDA of favouritism and Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Prakash Javadekar responding by saying it was done by an expert panel and not the Government. However, official records obtained by The Indian Express under the Right to Information Act tell an untold story. Much before the IoE list was released on July 9 this year, records show, there was a strong difference of opinion within the Government, too — over autonomy, finance and academic norms for such institutions. While the HRD and Finance Ministries pushed for stringent norms on accountability, financial commitment, penalties, land availability and expertise, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) wanted a more liberalised regime on all these points. So much so, that the concept 1O THE EDITORIAL PAGE YOUR RIGHT TO KNOW E AN XPRESS RTI APPLICATION PART 1 note and draft regulations on the UGC (Institutions of Eminence Deemed to be Universities) Regulations, 2017, went back and forth for almost nine months, from December 2015 to September 2016. The PMO, eventually, prevailed on most points of contention. Correspondence between the Ministries and the PMO record the divergence in opinion in detail. Qualification, experience The HRD Ministry’s draft states that members of the sponsoring organisation of a greenfield private institution should have experience, either as sponsors or heads — vice-chancellors or directors — in setting up a higher education institution. On June 13, 2016, the PMO replaced CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Secular and communal BY CHRISTOPHE JAFFRELOT Male calls India envoy after tweet by Swamy to invade ‘Should invade if Sept polls are rigged’ SHUBHAJIT ROY NEW DELHI, AUGUST 27 WITH BARELY a month to go for elections in Maldives, tension between New Delhi and Male has escalated following a tweet by BJP Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy, calling for “invading” the island nation if the polls are “rigged”. Sources told The Indian Express that Maldives Foreign Secretary Ahmed Sareer summoned Indian High Commissioner Akhilesh Mishra Sunday and conveyed Male’s “displeasure” at Swamy’s tweet. The Maldives government has also submitted a demarche to the Indian government, where it expressed shock at the statement. The meeting between Sareer and Mishra took place at around 11 am local time (10.30 am IST) in the Maldives foreign ministry. This was followed by a meeting with ambassadors from seven countries, who were briefed by the government about the upcoming elections in Maldives on September 23. On August 23, Swamy had tweeted: “India should invade Maldives if rigging of election takes place”. The tweet included a link to a Maldivian news report on a meeting between Swamy and former Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed in Colombo the previous day. Responding to a query on Swamy’s tweet, the Ministry of External Affairs’s official spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said: “The opinion expressed by Dr Swamy in his CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 RELIEF AND REHAB Cess or ordinance, we need help from Centre: Finance Minister KERALA FLOODS PICKING UP THE PIECES LIZ MATHEW & AANCHAL MAGAZINE NEW DELHI, AUGUST 27 EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE AHMEDABAD, AUGUST 27 NEW DELHI, AUGUST 27 A SPECIAL trial court here on Monday sentenced two more accused — Farukh Bhana and Imran alias Sheru Batuk — to life imprisonment in the 2002 Sabarmati Express train burning case at Godhra railway station that led to widespread communal riots in Gujarat. Special judge H C Vora acquitted three others — Hussain Suleman Mohan, Kasam Bhamedi and Faruk Dhantiya. They were among the six arrested by different agencies between 2015 and 2016. Another accused, Sabir Abdul Gani Pataliya, had died during the Till date, 33 persons have been convicted and 67 acquitted. Archive EUROPE CANNOT RELY ONLY ON UNITED STATES FOR ITS SECURITY, SAYS MACRON GUJARAT pendency of the trial. Judge Vora pronounced the order after considering the deposition of 37 witnesses and evidence provided by the Supreme ● DEFAMATION CASE AGAINST RAHUL, PAGE 5 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 THE INDIAN cricket board will probe fresh revelations made by B B Misra, the former chief investigator of the IPL spot-fixing scandal, to The Indian Express, including that a top cricketer was under suspicion for contacts with a bookie in 2008-09. Vinod Rai, who heads the BCCI’s Committee of Administrators (CoA), said the board’s anti-corruption unit has been instructed to probe the details. “We have read the reports, looked into them and will take the necessary steps. As the board doesn’t have any record or evi- ‘Will take necessary steps’ BREAKING THE IPL SILENCE AN EXPRESS SERIES dence about the particular findings, as it was not given to the board and which only the court has access to, we will ask the court to provide them. Also, we have informed the anti-corruption unit chief, and he will take further steps after studying the CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 WITH FLOOD-RAVAGED Kerala awaiting more financial aid from the Central government for rehabilitation and rebuilding, its Finance Minister Thomas Isaac wants the Centre to issue an ordinance to change GST laws to permit the state to levy cess for mobilising resources. Speaking to The Indian Express, Isaac said he was busy supervising relief and rehab work in Alappuzha district and would write to the GST Council by September 2. “I will write a formal proposal to the GST Council requesting permission to levy cess on the State GST. The existing rules have to be changed for it. I will Supreme Court judge Justice K M Joseph sings at the fundraiser for Kerala in Delhi, Monday. Seated in the front row (from right) are Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, Justice Kurian Joseph, Senior Advocate Vikas Singh, and Justices Madan B Lokur, A K Sikri and Deepak Gupta. Anil Sharma also seek an appointment with the Union Finance Minister by September 10 to request him to issue an ordinance making the required changes in the law,” Isaac said. He said he would talk to other state finance ministers for their support. “No one can object to it,” he said. “The council has to meet and agree and the Centre can issue an ordinance.” The next GST Council meeting is scheduled for the end of next month. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 MORE REPORTS PAGE 9 ● PAGE ONE ANCHOR J LEADS THE WAY IN J&K DEVELOPMENT, BY FUND VALUE & WORK DONE Of the 61 identified projects, 13 are in Jammu, 11 in Kashmir and nine in Ladakh; at least 28 projects cut across regions NAVEED IQBAL SRINAGAR, AUGUST 27 BJP PRESIDENT Amit Shah and general secretary Ram Madhav blamed the neglect of the Jammu and Ladakh regions as one of the reasons for pulling out of the alliance with PDP in Jammu and Kashmir on June 19. But official records of the projects under the Prime Minister’s Development Package (PMDP) show a balanced allocation, and a skew, if at all, in favour of Jammu, in terms of the progress of projects on the ground. A report by the erstwhile state government on the status of the projects under the PMDP shows that of the 61 identified projects, 13 are in the Jammu region, 11 in Kashmir and nine in Ladakh. At least 28 projects cut across regions and are statewide. In Jammu, physical work on five projects including an IIM (where classes started in November 2016) and the semiring road have commenced. At least one project — the four-laning of Chenani-Nashri section of NH-1A — has been completed at a cost of Rs 4,700 crore and inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in April 2017. Of the 11 projects under the PMDP in the Kashmir region, only three are off the ground including four-laning of the Qazigund-Banihal section of NH-1A, of which 72 per cent has been completed — none of the THE BREAK-UP JAMMU & KASHMIR `18,548 cr JAMMU `22,409 cr TOTAL `69,178 cr KASHMIR `8,224 cr LADAKH `19,997 cr others has made any significant progress. In the Ladakh region, at least two major projects — construction of cold storage facility at Leh and Kargil and subsidy support for setting up solar driers — found no takers. The development package of Rs 80,068 crore for the state was announced by the Prime Minister on November 7, 2015. It comprised 61 major development works to be implemented by 15 central ministries with the assistance of the state government. The last review of the PMDP, by the Union Home Secretary, when the BJP-PDP PROJECT J&K STAT U S R E P O RT PART 2 alliance was intact showed that Rs 62,991 crore (approximately 79 per cent) had been sanctioned by March end this year. However, just Rs 24,443 crore (31 per cent) had been released, and the amount utilised was even lower at Rs 20,417 crore (25 per cent). Official records also show that at least 28 bigticket projects — each worth Rs 1,000 crore or more — under the PMDP are stuck at various stages. When contacted, former J&K finance minister Haseeb Drabu said that for many projects, the scope of some investments was not confined to just Jammu or Kashmir. “You can’t pin it to one region. Road and power projects benefit the entire state, not just Jammu or Kashmir,” he said and added that there was no question that fund allocation or development has been lopsided. “It was equal across regions. The CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 BUSINESS AS USUAL BY UNNY
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