TheIndian EXPRESS LATE CITY, 16 PAGES, KOLKATA `5.00/EX-KOLKATA `6.00 (`12 IN NORTH EAST STATES & ANDAMAN) ● FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 9, 2018 ● WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA Verma to depose before CVC today, written reply rejects Asthana’s charges EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE A FORTNIGHT after he was divested of all responsibilities and sent on leave by the governmentalongwithSpecialDirector Rakesh Asthana with whom he had been at loggerheads, CBI Director Alok Verma appeared before the Central Vigilance Commission Thursday which is probing allegations levelled against him by Asthana. But the meeting of the enquiry committee to hear Verma was postponed to Friday duetothenon-availabilityof one of the Vigilance Commissioners. CVC sources told The Indian Express that a notice was served on Verma Wednesday to appear for the enquiry at Satarkata Bhawan the next day. Justice (retd) A K Patnaik, who was asked by the Supreme Court to oversee the probe, Central Vigilance Commissioner K V Chowdary and Vigilance Commissioner Sharad Kumar 2 YEARS AFTER DEMONETISATION Okayingnoteban,RBI rejectedgovtclaimon blackmoney,fakenotes Verma was divested of all charge last month NEW DELHI, NOVEMBER 8 A makeover for CBI BY G P JOSHI Agency cannot be governed by British-era law. THEIDEASPAGE 9 were present for the enquiry but Vigilance Commissioner TMBhasinwasnotavailabledue to a personal commitment. It was then decided to postpone the meeting of the enquiry committee to Friday, sources said. Theenquiryreport,approved by Justice Patnaik, has to be submitted to the Supreme Court for the next hearing of petitions by CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 This is the bus that was hit by an IED blast in Dantewada on Thursday. Dipankar Ghose Days before vote, Maoists target poll-duty bus, at least five killed DIPANKAR GHOSE BACHELI (DANTEWADA), NOVEMBER 8 INTHEthirdMaoistattackinless thantwoweeks,fivepersons—a CISF head constable and four civilians — were killed when their bus was hit by an IED blast in Bacheli, in Dantewada, on Thursday. Seniorpoliceofficerssaidthe private bus had been requisitioned by the state government DECISION 2018 CHHATTISGARH NOVEMBER 12 & 20, 2018 for the elections in Bastar, which goes to polls on November 12. According to police, around Thursday noon, eight persons, including four CISF personnel, took the bus from the Bacheli Within a year, CVC gave BJP sacks Uttarakhand two opposite orders on leader over sexual note against Asthana harassment charges SUSHANT SINGH Asthana was sent on leave along with Verma NEW DELHI, NOVEMBER 8 AS THE Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) conducts an enquiry into allegations against CBI Director Alok Verma, fresh details have emerged that the panel, headed by K V Chowdary, passed two diametrically different orders within a year on the same “note” against CBI Special Director Rakesh Asthana. BasedontheOctober21,2017 “note” from Verma, the CVC passedanorderonOctober23to sidestep Asthana from the CBI whileithadrejectedthecontents of that“note”toselectAsthanaas Special Director a year earlier. The Indian Express has learnt that the CVC order of October 23 referstothe“note” submittedby Verma “during the meeting of 13 WORLD GUNVIOLENCE HITSU.S. AGAIN,12 KILLEDINBAR TRUMP SACKS SESSIONS AS ATTORNEY GENERAL, BRINGS IN LOYALIST GOVT & POLITICS ● JD(U) SAYS TEMPLE NOT ON NDA AGENDA, P6 Selection Committee for appointment of Special Director in CBI on 21.10.17”. The CVC order states that in the note “certain transactions alleged to have been found in certain records seized from the Sandesara group,” wherein “23 suspected entries in hard as well assoftdatahasbeendetectedfor a total amount of Rs 39472106/with respect to Shri Rakesh Asthana”. Theorderalsonotedthat“investigationsinthesaidRC(regularcase)isstillpending”and“the fact that certain investigations CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 KAVITA UPADHYAY ‘Sanjay Kumar removed on own request’ DEHRADUN, NOVEMBER 8 THE BJP Thursday removed a senior leader from a top position in Uttarakhand after he was accusedof sexualharassmentby a woman worker in Dehradun. The BJP claimed that it removed Sanjay Kumar, its general secretary (organisation) and a former RSS pracharak, from the post on his own “written request”. Last Sunday, the Hindi daily Amar Ujala had published a report in which the BJP woman worker alleged that Kumar had sexually exploited her for five years,andthatseveralcomplaints madetovariouspartyleadershad gone unacknowledged. “Afterthesexualharassment allegations,he(Kumar)hadsubmitted a written request to the ME TOO party’s central leadershipasking that he must be removed from the post of Uttarakhand general secretary (organisation). The central leadership has accepted the request and he has been removed from the post,” CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Crackdown on crackers in cities, over 300 arrests in Delhi alone EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, NOVEMBER 8 AS POLICE across major cities, including Delhi, struggled to enforce the Supreme Court’s guidelines on bursting of firecrackers on Wednesday, pollution indices recorded grim figures post-Diwali. In Delhi, police registered 562 cases for “disobedience of order” (Section 188 of IPC) and arrested 310 people on Diwali night. Last month, the Supreme Court had allowed the use of “green” firecrackers for Diwali, but only for two hours, between 8 pm and 10 pm.However, there 8 4 Delhi needs air quality manager ● KOLKATA: AFTER THE EDITORIAL PAGE BY NOMESH BOLIA & MUKESH KHARE were no “green” firecrackers, which have reduced sound, emission and chemicals, available for sale in the market and BENGAL DIWALI, AIR IN CITY ‘VERY POOR’ illegal firecrackers went off, pushing the air quality to ‘very poor’ and ‘severe levels’. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 ● PAGE ONE ANCHOR TALIBAN AT AFGHANISTAN TALKS TABLE TODAY, DELHI SENDING ‘NON-OFFICIALS’ SHUBHAJIT ROY NEW DELHI, NOVEMBER 8 INDIAONThursdaysaiditwould participate, at a “non-official level”, in the Moscow format meeting on Afghanistan, which will be attended by a Taliban delegation. While the Afghan Foreign Ministry won’t participate in the meeting on Friday, the Afghan High Peace Council — a government-appointed body tasked to talk to Taliban on the reconciliation process — will be there. This is a significant development, and a major departure, since New Delhi has not partici- pated in a multilateral meeting involving Taliban in the past. At the last meeting on Afghanistan hosted by Russia, India had sent Deepak Mittal, Joint Secretary in charge of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran. But that meeting was not attended by Taliban representatives. “We are aware that the Russian Federation is hosting a meeting in Moscow on November 9 on Afghanistan... Our participation at the meeting will be at the non-official level,” Ministry of External Affairs’ official spokesperson, Raveesh Kumar, said. While New Delhi has taken a considered decision to join the JOURNALISM OF COURAGE Former envoys Raghavan, Sinha to represent India meeting, it will not send a government official. Sources told The Indian Express that former Indian Ambassador to Afghanistan, Amar Sinha, and former Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan, T C A Raghavan, will attend the meeting as India’s representatives. Both Sinha and Raghavan, whoareassociatedwithgovernment-funded think-tanks, have expertise and experience in dealing with the region. Sinha is a fellow with the Research and Information System for Developing Countries (a thinktank funded by MEA), and Raghavan is the director general of the Indian Council of World Affairs (another MEA-funded think-tank). Raghavan has also served as Joint Secretary CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 TALIBAN LEADER FREED AT U.S. REQUEST, SAYS PAKISTAN PAGE 13 hills, where the NMDC mines as well as CISF camps are located, to go to town to buy supplies. WhileoneCISFsub-inspector stayed back in Bacheli town, the bus returned with seven occupants.Nearturnnumber6,about an 8-km ascent from Bacheli, an IED exploded under the bus. While five persons were CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 RELATED REPORT PAGE 7 GOVT & POLITICS ● NAIDU MEETS GOWDA, HOPEFUL OF CONSENSUS, P 6 ‘Black money not in cash but gold, real estate; share of fake notes not very significant’ Currency confiscation was not objective of demonetisation: Jaitley RITU SARIN BUSINESS AS USUAL NEW DELHI, NOVEMBER 8 LESS THAN four hours before Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetisation on November 8, 2016, the Central BoardoftheReserveBankofIndia (RBI) gave its approval to the schemebutalsorejected,inwriting, two of the key justifications — black money and counterfeit notes—thathewouldmakeinhis televised address to the nation. The minutes of the 561st meeting of the RBI’s Central Board, which was convened hurriedly in New Delhi at 5.30 pm that day, reveal that the central bank’s directors described the move as “commendable”but alsowarnedthat demonetisation “will have a shorttermnegativeeffectonthe GDP for the current year”. The minutes were signed by RBI Governor Urjit Patel on December 15, 2016, five weeks afterthemeetingwasheld.Inall, six objections, described as “significant observations”, were recorded in the minutes by the RBI Board. The RBI directors, after CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 BY UNNY ‘Prophets of doom wrong’ ENS ECONOMIC BUREAU NEW DELHI, NOVEMBER 8 STATING THAT “confiscation of currency was not an objective” of demonetisation, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Thursday said the decision to scrap currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 two years ago has led to formalisation of the economy, curbing of cash transactions and more direct tax revenue. Onthesecondanniversary of demonetisation, Jaitley said the “prophets of doom” have been “conclusively proved wrong” with India retaining its position as the fastest growing economy for the fifth year in a row. TheFinanceMinistersaidthe impact of demonetisation led to personal income tax collection in the first seven months of this GOVT & POLITICS ● WAS ILL-FATED, ILL-THOUGHT EXERCISE, SAYS MANMOHAN, P 6 financial year going up by 20.2 per cent and corporate tax by 19.5 per cent. On digital transactions, he said Visa and Mastercard are losing market share in India to indigenous developed payment systems of UPI and RUPAY Card “whose share have reached 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.