DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA JOURNALISM OF COURAGE SINCE 1932 FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 1, 2019, AHMEDABAD, LATE CITY, 22 PAGES `4.00 WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM NEEDS NO OTHER APPROVAL: MOHANAN Kudankulam: N-power utility struggles to repay Russia for supplies Niti calls adverse job report a draft, ex-stat head says no, it’s final ANIL SASI NEW DELHI, JANUARY 31 GUJARAT CONVICT BABU BAJRANGI IN BAD SHAPE: GOVT TO SC IN 2002 RIOTS CASE NAVSARI VILLAGERS OPPOSE CONVERSION OF TRIBALS TO CHRISTIANITY PAGE 4 THE EDITORIAL PAGE NEW GAME: INDIA & IRAN, SAUDI & PAK BY CHRISTOPHE JAFFRELOT PAGE 10 BUSINESS AS USUAL BY UNNY INADEQUATE BUDGETARY support to the strategic nuclear energy sector over the last two financial years has squeezed funds earmarked under the investment head for the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL), resulting in India’s frontline nuclear utility slipping back on its repayment obligations to the Russians for equipment supplies to the Kudankulam nuclear project. The sanctioning of lower than requisite funds comes at a time when NPCIL’s budgetary support requirement has gone up in light of the utility taking up 10 new projects that had been cleared by the government in May 2017. The problem of non-payment of Russian credit on account of a reduction in the provision for Russian credit to NPCIL was discussed before a parliamentary panel, responding to which the Department of Expenditure in the Finance Ministry subsequently “conveyed” the concerns to the Budget Division of the Department of Economic Affairs in the same Ministry for “further necessary action”. Under a credit arrangement between the governments of Russia and India, as soon as CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 NSC asks J&K for data on property in Valley left by Pandits NAVEED IQBAL SRINAGAR, JANUARY 31 NEARLY THREE decades after the migration of Pandits from the Kashmir Valley due to militancy, the National Security Council has sought data from the J&K administration on the immovable properties they left behind. In a letter to the state’s revenue department, the National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS) stated that it is “preparing an assessment on Kashmiri migrants — Pandits, Sikhs and others” who were displaced due to militancy. The letter, dated January 14, seeks area-wise data of “land holdings and immovable property of Kashmiri migrants... who are settled in other parts of J&K and rest of India”. While it does not indicate the survey’s purpose, the NSCS has asked the administration to provide details of such immovable property currently in state custody. Additionally, it has sought details of “distress sales” and alienation of these properties. In May 1997, the J&K Assembly had passed the J&K Migrant Immovable Property (Preservation, Protection and CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 AANCHAL MAGAZINE NEW DELHI, JANUARY 31 Young athletes train on the steps of the Dadoji Konddev stadium in Thane. Deepak Joshi Cricket forces out budding stars from stadium’s track to its steps SHIVANI NAIK THANE, JANUARY 31 ADITI PARAB’S Khelo India gold medal in the U-17 4x400m relay came after she spent 16 months training on the steps of the Dadoji Konddev Stadium in Thane. Running in the stands, she has also watched grass grow on the infield where she has been denied access. The reason: her spikes could take off tufts of grass being protected for a summer of cricket. On Thursday, she was turned back at the gates and the stadium closed to several athletes as part of a security drill for a celebrity cricket match featuring Marathi actors. Also, at least a couple of IPL teams are expected to use the newly furbished and fenced stadium for training thereafter. Over the last year, cricket has squeezed out over 200 young track-and-field athletes to a corner of this Thane stadium and beyond a prohibitive white fence that restricts anyone from even stepping onto the field. Most practice only on the steps of the stadium, some even in the toptier. The multipurpose stadium, which could fill up for day-night inter-club athletics competitions for the last three decades, is now available for athletes only along the viewing galleries. Aditi’s athletics club-mate CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Questions on data handling, dent image For an economy of India’s size, integrity of data is critical to policy making and also has global implications. As with GDP data, the controversy around the job survey, the protest resignation of two top members of the statistics commission, dents the credibility of the government and data institutions. ENS ECONOMIC BUREAU NEW DELHI, JANUARY 31 authority has to give any further approval. NSSO reports used to be released and all analysis takes place after the release,” Mohanan told The Indian Express after Niti Aayog’s press conference. The country’s unemployment rate surged to over 6 per cent in 2017-18, the highest since THE COUNTRY’Sunemployment rate surged to over 6 per cent in 2017-18, the highest since 197273, according to the National Sample Survey Office’s (NSSO) periodic labour force survey (PLFS), said an official who was part of the deliberations for the survey’s approval in December. The findings of the PLFS survey were first reported by Business Standard on Thursday. The unemployment rate stood at 7.8 per cent in urban areas as compared with 5.3 per cent in rural areas, while the labour force participation rate, which is the proportion of population working or seeking jobs, declined to 36.9 per cent in 2017-18 from CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Now husband’s turn, DECISION Talwar exploited Minister link, his firms 2019 got Rs 212-crore kickbacks, ED tells court SEBI finalises report EXPRESS NETWORK THE QUESTIONS on Dhoot-Kochhar THAT MATTER A daily Explainer on PRITAM PAL SINGH & DEEPTIMAN TIWARY NEW DELHI, JANUARY 31 SANDEEP SINGH NEW DELHI, JANUARY 31 ICICI BANK on Wednesday sacked former MD and CEO Chanda Kochhar and revoked her bonuses since April 2009 after Justice B N Srikrishna’s report indicted her for violating the lender’s code of conduct. Now market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi), after a separate investigation, has initiated adjudication proceedings against Videocon Industries (VIL) and its chairman Venugopal Dhoot for alleged violations in its transactions with Kochhar’s husband Deepak Kochhar and his companies. Sources confirmed that Sebi, which began probing Dhoot in April 2018, along with Chanda SEBI found several deals with Dhoot’s Videocon raise conflict of interest Why is poll economics about handouts, sops? PAGE 6 WORLD TANGLE OF TRANSACTIONS ICICI Bank-Videocon-Deepak Kochhar Kochhar, completed its Dhoot probe in November 2018. Since then it has initiated adjudication EU PARLIAMENT RECOGNISES GUAIDO AS VENEZUELA INTERIM PRESIDENT PAGE 15 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Jind bypoll win cements BJP’s non-Jat base, rattles Congress roots in Haryana prompt the BJP to advance the Assembly elections due in October and hold it along with Lok Sabha elections, after its nominee Krishan Middha defeated Digvijay Singh Chautala of Jannayak Janata Party (JJP), a breakaway outfit of INLD, MANOJ C G NEW DELHI, JANUARY 31 THE OUTCOME of the Assembly bypoll in Jind has sent many signals, settled some debates and posed a new set of questions to the main players — the winner BJP, the INLD factions and a redfaced Congress — ahead of the Lok Sabha and Haryana elections. Primarily, the result could CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 BJP’s Krishan Middha RAMGARH: CONG WINS PAGE 14 Meet those who killed the Mahatma on January 30, 2019 — in Aligarh PAGE 1 ANCHOR 6 arrested, 7 on the run, including key face & former maths teacher SOURAV ROY BARMAN Nandini Kaskar, too, trains for her long-jump run-up on the same lower-tier steps. The erstwhile long-jump pit is now buried somewhere under where long-on will stand for a righthanded batsman. Sprinters queue up to take their tilt at a hastily-built, single-laned and pot-holed 200m track. It has now forced parents to make regular visits to doctors with their wards complaining of anything between foot pain to shin fractures, losing up to six months to easily-avoidable injuries. Aditi rues what real training could have achieved. “It’s affected my speed. The shin hurts, THE NATIONAL Sample Survey Office’s (NSSO) job survey for 2017-18 that records a surge in the unemployment rate to over 6 per cent, a 45-year high, and which the Government is sitting on, set off a firestorm Thursday. While Niti Aayog called it a “draft report,” former acting National Statistical Commission (NSC) Chairman P C Mohanan, who resigned earlier this week because the report wasn’t released, rebutted the claim and told The Indian Express that this was the “final report” and it needed no further approval. Niti Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar, at a press conference Thursday, said the quarterly employment data sets for the July-December 2018 period (two quarters) are still being processed and the government would release the employment survey report by March “after collating quarter-on-quarter data”. However, Mohanan said: “This (NSSO Periodic Labour Force Survey) was the final report. As per procedure, National Statistical Commission approves the report. We approved the report and no Joblessness up 6% in 2017-18, spike in both rural, urban ALIGARH, JANUARY 31 Gajendra Kumar Verma, who ‘fired the second bullet’, was granted interim bail in Aligarh, Thursday. Gajendra Yadav MAHATMA GANDHI was shot dead on January 30, 1948. On January 30, 2019, a former mathematics teacher, an advocate and a teenager pumped three bullets into him from close quarters. As the Mahatma lay motionless in an Aligarh neighbourhood, an autorickshaw driver and a timber merchant torched the effigy. A small crowd cheered and distributed sweets. The act of this motley group from the All India Hindu Mahasabha has since gone viral on the Internet in a 2.07-minute clip. Aligarh police have arrested six persons while the seven other accused are on the run, including “national secretary” of the Mahasabha, Pooja Shakun Pandey. On Thursday, Gajendra Kumar Verma (59), the advocate who fired the “second bullet”, was granted interim bail until February 6 on “health grounds” CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 THE ENFORCEMENT Directorate (ED) Thursday told a Delhi special court that consultant Deepak Talwar, deported to India from the UAE Wednesday, was one of the main accused who allegedly facilitated dispersal of profit-making routes of Air India to private airlines using his connection with the then Civil Aviation Minister. Deepak Talwar in a Delhi court, Thursday. PTI It claimed five companies associated with Talwar were paid in excess of Rs 212 crore in connection with the Air India case. The ED named Air Arabia, Emirates and Qatar Airways as “beneficiaries of route dispersal”. The alleged deliberate ceding of profitable routes and schedules to private airlines is one of four cases being probed by the ED — the remaining three are related to the Air India-Indian Airlines merger, purchase of 111 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 AGUSTA: ED SAYS SAXENA SWISS BANK ACCOUNT HAS $43 mn PAGE 9
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