eye THE SUNDAY EXPRESS MAGAZINE Renew AHMEDABAD,LATE CITY DECEMBER 30, 2018 20+6 (EYE) PAGES, `5.00 DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM AGUSTAWESTLAND HEARING ED says Michel referred to ‘Mrs Gandhi’, claims plot to tamper with evidence Truth unfolding: BJP; their scriptwriters at work: Cong Tells court that documents mention ‘son of Italian lady... Going to be PM’ ABHISHEK ANGAD NEW DELHI, DECEMBER 29 1 GB OF MOBILE DATA In 2017, the cost of it in India fell to 1.53% of gross national income per capita, or under Rs 3 — the cheapest among all 61 low- and middleincome countries. As more and more go online, this New Year, The Sunday Express tells this story of India on the Internet through people and their smartphones by asking them, ‘What’s on your phone?’ THE ENFORCEMENT Directorate (ED) told a Delhi court Saturday that during questioning in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper case, alleged midddleman Christian Michel had taken “Mrs Gandhi’s” name in reference to a query, and that he had later managed to hand over a follow- up question to his lawyer seeking directions on “what to say”, calling it “a conspiracy to shield or tamper with evidence”. Appearing before Vacation Judge Chandra Shekhar, the ED’s Special Public Prosecutor, D P Singh, said: “Parson (December 27) inhone Mrs Gandhi ka naam liya tha ek kisi reference mein. Main reference ka naam nahin loonga. To humein follow-up CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, DECEMBER 29 Michel after being produced in court on Saturday. PTI THE BJP and the Congress on Saturday traded charges over the Enforcement Directorate’s submission in a Delhi court that Christian Michel, the alleged middleman in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper case, had mentioned Congress leader MANISH SAHU LUCKNOW, DECEMBER 29 PAGES 15-20 HOPING FOR A MIRACLE Navy divers on Saturday enter the collapsed coal mine in Lumthari village, in Meghalaya’s East Jaintia Hills district, where 15 miners continue to be trapped. On Saturday, the rescue operation made little progress. Reuters REPORTS, PAGE 7 Citing threat, officials seek upgrade of Bhagwat’s security After a polarising campaign, watershed Bangladesh polls today amid tight security RAHUL TRIPATHI NEW DELHI, DECEMBER 29 AHEAD OF the 2019 general elections, a security audit carried out by Central and state agencies on threat perception to Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat has recommended upgrading his security cover to Black Cat commandos of the National Security Guard (NSG). Bhagwat currently enjoys Zplus security cover, the third highest after SPG and NSG, with over 60 CISF commandos deployed round the clock to protect him. While intelligence agencies have cited heightened security risk to Bhagwat, officials at North Block said they were still evaluating these reports and a decision on Bhagwat’s security would be taken soon. Officials pointed to instances when Bhagwat’s security was breached during the recent elections in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. The threat assessment is also believed to have analysed alleged plots by modules in India of the Al-Qaeda in Indian Subcontinent CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 EXPRESSIN DHAKA SHUBHAJIT ROY DHAKA, DECEMBER 29 NAUKA (BOAT) or dhaner sheesh (paddy sheaf)? That’s the big question as Bangladesh votes on Sunday at the end of two months of a polarising and often violent campaign that has seen workers of the ruling Awami League clash with supporters of the main Opposition party, the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP). While the ruling coalition is banking on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s track record of “development”, hoping people will favour the ‘boat (the Awami League’s election symbol)’ over the Opposition’s paddy sheaf, Report: Contrary to stance, Facebook flags posts against a religion and send her to power for a third straight term, the Opposition coalition, the Jatiya Oikya Front (National United Front), is hoping anti-incumbency will finally bring down the government and pave the way for release of BNP leader Khaleda Zia from jail. While many in the Awami League are confident of a victory, CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Army out in Dhaka on Saturday ahead of polls. AP ANOTHER REPORT PAGE 13 GUJARAT KARISHMA MEHROTRA NEW DELHI, DECEMBER 29 FACEBOOK INSTRUCTS its content moderators to flag posts degrading a religion in India because that speech violates Indian local laws, according to leaked documents accessed byThe New York Times. These content moderation instructions contradict the company’s own laid out global policy as well as articulation of the pol- icy in meetings with the press. In a meeting with a handful of reporters in October in the Facebook Delhi office, Facebook’s Vice-President for Global Policy Solutions Richard Allen had said Facebook does not consider hate speech to be speech attacking any religion or belief, but rather it defines hate speech as speech attacking a group of people. “Attacking a concept is not hate speech,” Allen said at the CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Surat firm owner booked for money laundering SURAT, DECEMBER 29 THOSE TRYING TO DILUTE NATIONALISM STILL ACTIVE ON CAMPUSES: SHAH FOR TRIPS, SCHOOLS TOLD TO TAKE PERMISSION OF DEO IL&FS PULLS OUT OF AHMEDABAD METRO PROJECT PAGES 3&4 HEAD CONSTABLE Suresh Vats, 49, died on Saturday after being hit by a stone by a mob in Nonhahara police station area of Ghazipur, hours after Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a rally in the district. Police said protesters belonging to the Nishad Party had blocked a road demanding release of four of their party workers, who had been arrested earlier in the day for staging a protest. When a police team reached to remove the blockade near the Atwara police outpost, the protesters started pelting stones, leading to injuries to five, including Vats. The Head Constable was rushed to hospital, where he died during treatment. The other four injured, who are in a stable condition, include two police constables and two civilians. A native of Pratapgarh district, Vats was posted at Karimuddinpur police station in Ghazipur. Nine persons have so far been detained in connection with Vats’s death, Inspector General of Police, Varanasi Range, Vijay Singh Meena said. This is the second incident this month of a policeman dying in a mob attack in Uttar Pradesh. On December 3, Inspector Subodh Kumar Singh had been killed in Bulandshahr district by protesters angry over alleged cow slaughter. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 `2,107-CRORE BANK LOAN DEFAULT EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE THE ENFORCEMENT Directorate (ED) has filed a case of money laundering against the owner of a Surat-based textile firm, Babulal Jain, and his brother Devender Jain and 13 others in connection with the alleged defrauding of 13 banks to the tune of Rs 2,107 crore. The owners of Nakoda Limited had availed Rs 2,107 crore as loan from a consortium of 13 banks, led by Canara Bank, Cong govts in, lines begin for fertilisers, says PM, warns against ‘lollipops’ Slams Cong farm loan waivers, says MP, Rajasthan seeing black-market surge Sonia Gandhi while he was being questioned. While the BJP said the “revelations” had “stunned the nation” and were all pointing towards “one family”, the Congress called it a case of “BJP scriptwriters... working overtime” as general elections near. Addressing a press conference at the BJP headquarters, CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Policeman killed in UP as stones pelted at Nishad Party protest ‘NOBODY HAS ANY RESPECT FOR THE OTHERS IN A WHATSAPP GROUP. SO I NEVER TALK, JUST WATCH’ Whether fury of women or rage of a fragile planet, it is time to ring out the old allegedly through fake invoices and documents, and later defaulted on it. “The ED has filed a prosecution complaint before PMLA court in Mumbai against Babulal Jain, chairman, and Devender Jain, joint managing director of M/s Nakoda Limited under PMLA in bank fraud case,” a senior ED official said. According to the ED investigation, brothers Babulal Jain and Devender Jain had conspired with their associate Puneet Rungta and chartered accountant CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 PM Narendra Modi with Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath in Ghazipur on Saturday.Vishal Srivastav MAULSHREE SETH GHAZIPUR, DECEMBER 29 REFERRING TO the Congress as a “lollipop company”, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday accused the party of “cheating” farmers in the name of farm loan waivers, and said that in the few days since it came to power in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, a shortage of fertilisers and urea had arisen in the two states. Addressing a rally here in eastern Uttar Pradesh, Modi said, “What happens to attractive solutions offered just to get votes is visible in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. As soon as the government changed, long queues can be seen for fertilisers and urea. Public is lathicharged, while those involved in blackmarketing have surfaced.” He said that even in Karnataka, where the Congress had formed a government through the “backdoor”, farmers have been cheated, and that against the promise to waive off loans oflakhs offarmers, only 800 farmers had benefited. “Lollipop pakda diya gaya vote churane ke liye (They handed a lollipop to steal votes),” Modi said, adding that police had been set after those whose loans were not CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Fertilisers now enter poll race WITH LOK SABHA elections drawing closer, BJP and Congress are jousting to project themselves as champions of farmers’ interests. With the Congress wielding farm loan waivers as its ace, BJP needs a trump card too. While implementation of the loan waivers will take some time, the issue of shortage of fertilisers has the potential to create doubts in farmers’ minds — never mind that channelising fertiliers to farmers is a collaborative effort between Centre, states, cooperatives and private agencies. Congress govts claim crisis almost over, urea stocks on way HAMZA KHAN & MILIND GHATWAI JAIPUR, BHOPAL, DEC 29 PRIME MINISTER Narendra Modi took potshots at the newly elected Congress governments in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan on Saturday, blaming them for urea shortages in the ongoing rabi cropping season. This came even as the state governments concerned claimed an improvement in the availability situation of the nitrogenous fertiliser that is especially critical for the already planted wheat and rapeseed-mustard crops. According to the Rajasthan government, the Centre had allocated 12 lakh tonnes (lt) of urea for the state during the current rabi season from October to March. However, as against the 2.15 lt original supply plan for October and 2.60 lt for November, only 1.40 lt and 2.40 lt were made available, thereby creating a shortfall of 95,000 tonnes. “This backlog has been almost cleared this month, with 3.40 lt of urea being received, compared to the original supply plan of 2.9 lt for December,” said Vikas Sitaramji Bhale, the State Agriculture Commissioner. Out of the balance shortfall of 45,000 tonnes, 15,000 will be supplied through five rail rakes by this month-end. The rest should be covered through higher supplies in January. “The entire crisis will be over before mid-January,” he added. Urea is a controlled fertiliser, with the Centre fixing both its maximum retail price (MRP) and preparing a monthly supply plan based on consultations with CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 EXPRESS NETWORK Survivor of the Naxal attack on Cong convoy now a minister DIPANKAR GHOSE RAIPUR, DECEMBER 29 AHEAD OF BHIMA KOREGAON MEET, BHIM ARMY CHIEF, ACTIVISTS HELD 17 NAMES IN HOME MINISTRY LIST FOR NEW CBI CHIEF PAGE 7 ON MAY 25, 2013, when the entire top brass of the Congress in Chhattisgarh was wiped out in a Maoist attack in Jhiram that left 29 people dead, there was only one survivor: Konta MLA Kawasi Lakhma. The Congress leadership was glad he had escaped, yet, there were many conspiracy theories that did the rounds on how he could have survived the attack that killed the other leaders — Nand Kumar Patel, Mahendra Karma, Vidya Charan Shukla and Uday Mudliyar. Lakhma was even questioned, but five years and an NIA probe later, no proof of any conspiracy has emerged. On Tuesday, December 25, 61-year-old Lakhma, who won his fifth straight election from Konta, became minister in the new Chhattisgarh Cabinet, and has since been given the excise and industry portfolio. Again, not without controversy. As minister hopefuls were being discussed, his lack of any formal schooling, and inability to read or write, had already become a conversation subject. Yet, as Lakhma stood on stage to take oath as minister, he held a speech in his hand. In the end, however, he didn’t look at the paper before him, only repeated the oath after Governor 5-time MLA Kawasi Lakhma with Rahul Gandhi. Express Anandiben Patel. Later, when asked how he intended to read files as minister, Lakhma pointed out that he had successfully functioned in the Assembly for 20 years, and was Deputy Leader of Opposition. “God has given me brains... I will work for poor and marginalised people and represent their interests,” Lakhma said. In the Assembly, as in his speeches outside, Lakhma is known for bringing the house down with his theatrics. A video of Lakhma’s campaign in a village shows him telling an audience that he had fulfilled the promise of building a good road between Konta and Sukma — “as smooth as Hema Malini’s cheeks”, he said borrowing Lalu Prasad’s famous line, as people laughed at his antics. Lakhma was born to an Adivasi family in Nagaras, 20 km from the district headquar- ters of Sukma, one of the districts most affected by Leftwing extremism in the country. In the late Eighties, he entered politics and fought his first Assembly election in 1998 from Konta as a Congress candidate. He defeated popular CPI leader Manish Kunjam, who had until then dominated the political scene of the region and who continues to be Lakhma’s primary political opponent in Konta.
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