DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA JOURNALISM OF COURAGE WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2019, AHMEDABAD, LATE CITY, 22 PAGES ORDER GIVES BENGAL, CENTRE EXIT ROUTE The standoff ends: SC says no arrest, police chief has to face CBI GUJARAT Shillong is venue for questioning, says CJI-bench ANANTHAKRISHNAN G DEAD FISH FOUND IN NARMADA, WATER SUPPLY TO 138 VILLAGES HALTED P3 THE EDITORIAL PAGE PRODUCTIVITY ALARM BY BHASKAR CHAKRAVORTI PAGE 10 BUSINESS AS USUAL BY UNNY NEW DELHI, FEBRUARY 5 THE SUPREME Court Tuesday issued notice to the Mamata Banerjee government on a contempt plea by the CBI which alleged “total breakdown of Constitutional machinery” in West Bengal, and directed Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar to appear before the agency in Shillong in connection with the investigation in the chit fund scam cases. A bench of Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna, however, restrained the agency from initiating any coercive action against the officer or arresting him. “Having heard learned counsel for the parties, we direct Shri Rajeev Kumar, Commissioner of Police, Kolkata to appear and make himself available before the investigating agency, namely, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), and to faithfully cooperate with the investigating agency at all times. However, we make it clear that no coercive steps, including arrest, shall be taken against the Commissioner of Police. To avoid CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Following the Supreme Court order, Mamata Banerjee called off her dharna in Kolkata, Tuesday. Partha Paul He fudged call data, SIT shielded accused firms to help party: CBI ANANTHAKRISHNAN G & RAVIK BHATTACHARYA NEW DELHI, KOLKATA, FEBRUARY 5 THE SPECIAL Investigation Team (SIT) headed by Rajeev Kumar, now Kolkata Police Commissioner at the centre of the Centre-West Bengal faceoff, was “used to shield...Saradha, M/s Rose Valley and Tower Group etc. which have given huge contributions (even by way of cheques) to the party in power in the State of West Bengal”. `4.00 WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM SINCE 1932 Putting this on record in its additional affidavit to the Supreme Court Tuesday, the CBI alleged that Kumar “destroyed... and tampered” with Call Data Records of a key accused, suppressed the FIR registered against Rose Valley and held back evidence. And that “a strong prima facie case of...Kumar having committed offences both under the Prevention of Corruption Act and other IPC offences have been made out”. Kumar has denied wrongdoing in the SIT probe into these CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 VHP springs surprise: No Ayodhya temple agitation for 4 months LALMANI VERMA NEW DELHI, FEBRUARY 5 AFTER HOLDINGdharma sabhas across the country demanding an ordinance to enable construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya and later holding a Dharma Sansad at the Kumbh Mela on the issue last week, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) Tuesday announced that it will not hold any agitational programme on the Ram Janmabhoomi issue for the next four months until the Lok Sabha elections are over. The VHP’s surprise announcement comes barely a week after the BJP-led NDA government moved the Supreme Court seeking permission to return the 67 acres of land in Ayodhya — adjacent to the disputed site — to its original owners including the Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas. This was decided at the recent Dharma Sansad in Prayagraj, the VHP said. Speaking to The Indian Express, VHP international working president Alok Kumar said: Relief for Govt, signal to allies THIS REDUCES pressure on the BJP government and lowers the heat ahead of polls. Though the PM underlined primacy of the legal process, the government filed a petition to allow release of land adjacent to the disputed site. The VHP’s rethink will also address anxieties among BJP’s allies going into the polls — and may help post-poll too. TAKING STRONG exception to the Centre’s submission that work on the National Register of Citizens in Assam will have to be suspended for a while in view of redeployment of central forces for the Lok Sabha elections, Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi Tuesday said the “Home GANDHINAGAR, FEBRUARY 5 Ministry does not want NRC work to go on” and the “entire effort from Home Ministry, it seems to me, is to destroy the process”. The Supreme Court, which is monitoring the work on updating the NRC, said it cannot extend the July 31 deadline already fixed for publication of the final NRC. Attorney General K K Venugopal, appearing for the CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Centre gets earful from CJI for saying halt NRC during LS polls NEW DELHI, FEBRUARY 5 PARIMAL DABHI PATIDAR QUOTA leader Hardik Patel will plunge into electoral politics in the upcoming Lok Sabha election by contesting from Amreli constituency in the Saurashtra region of Gujarat. Sources close to Hardik told The Indian Express that it has not been decided whether Hardik would contest the election on a political party ticket or as an Independent candidate. “But he will be fighting against the ruling BJP,” they said. Hardik, 25, is at present touring Rajasthan after spending two days in Uttar Pradesh. According to the sources, the opposition Congress has offered two seats — Mehsana and Amreli — to Hardik. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE Hardik to contest Lok Sabha polls, likely from Amreli Hardik Patel in Jaipur on Tuesday. Twitter DECISION 2019 KARNATAKA: RIFT DELAYS CONG-JD(S) SEAT PLANS BENGAL: EX-TOP COP IN BJP SAYS ‘MAMATA HAS CHANGED’ PAGE 8
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