DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA JOURNALISM OF COURAGE MONDAY, JANUARY 11, 2021, NEW DELHI, LATE CITY, 16 PAGES `6.00 (`8 BIHAR & RAIPUR, `12 SRINAGAR) WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM SINCE 1932 HIGH SPEND SCHEMES LIKELY WORLD Govt looks at ‘expenditure’ budget to aid higher growth PAGE 13 Soon after bail, police pick up Para in another terror case ARUN SHARMA JAMMU, JANUARY 10 SOON AFTER he was granted bail bytheNIAcourtinacaseofterror funding, PDP youth wing leader Waheed-ur-RehmanParawasdetained again for questioning in a separate terror-related case. The Counter Intelligence wing of Jammu and Kashmir Police detained Para immediately after his release from District Jail, Ambphalla, on Saturday evening. “We had received a message from Counter Intelligence Kashmir(CIK) to collect Para from jail as he was wanted by them for questioningin connection Waheed Para with FIR No. 31 registered with them in Srinagar,”aseniorjailofficialsaid. The official expressed ignoranceaboutthedetailsof theFIR. While the police's counter intelligence wing remained silent, sources said the FIR pertains to a terror funding case. “It is an open FIR and Waheed's name is not mentioned. Several of (PDP chief) Mehbooba Mufti's relatives and aides have already been questionedinthiscase,”asourcesaid. “This case was filed after Waheed was arrested by the NIA,” the source added. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Protesters walked through the fields to reach the venue of the ‘kisan panchayat’ at Kaimla village in Karnal district of Haryana on Sunday. Jasbir Malhi P VAIDYANATHAN IYER Protesters disrupt BJP event in Khattar hits back: only Karnal, force CM to cancel visit amendments, Govt WITH THE uptick in the economy better than what most economists estimated post easing of lockdown restrictions, the Union Finance Ministry is of the viewthathigherspendingatthis stage of recovery — rather than earlier — will give a bigger push to growth. According to sources, the Prime Minister’s Economic AdvisoryCouncil,NitiAayogand the Chief Economic Advisor’s office, have pushed for an expansionary budget to reinforce the nascent recovery. All have advocated the Keynes mantra to Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman during pre-Budget consultations. British economist John Maynard Keynes had argued that free markets cannot be relied upon to fuel GDP growth when there is a recession, of the kind India and the world, has witnessed in 2020 following the Covid-19 pandemic. In 2020, consumer confidence hit a new low, and they avoided discretionary spending; this led to a demand collapse, forcing firms SUKHBIR SIWACH KAIMLA VILLAGE (KARNAL), JANUARY 10 AROUND 1,000 farm protesters stormedthevenueof ahigh-profile “kisan panchayat” organised by the ruling BJP in Haryana Sunday, forcing Chief Minister ManoharLalKhattartocancelhis visittothesiteontheoutskirtsof Kaimla village in Karnal district. Theincidentalsosawclashes between supporters of the BJP event and opponents of the Centre's new agriculture laws, withleadersonbothsidessaying that several persons suffered injuries during the confrontation. On Monday, the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear a clutch of petitions related to the laws, with talks between the Centre and farmer unions failing to make any headway despite protesters camping on Delhi's outskirts for over a month. The panchayat in Kaimla, organised by local BJP MLA Harvinder Kalyan, was part of the party's plan to hold such meetingstomobilisesupportfor the laws. However, the protesters had warned that they would CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 EXPERT EXPLAINS Siraj Hussain From The Indian Express panel of specialists, exclusive insight FARM PROTESTS, BIG PICTURE EXPLAINED PAGE 11 Racism stops play in Sydney as India draw hard line on abuse MIHIR VASAVDA & SRIRAM VEERA NEW DELHI, MUMBAI, JAN 10 RACISM STOPPED play at the Sydney Cricket Ground Sunday. In line with the recent global trend, where sportspersons are startingtodrawthelinebetween banter and racist abuse from the stands, the Indian cricket team puttheirfootdownandensured that the Test against Australia in Sydney was halted for 10 minutesSundaytillagroupof unruly spectators were evicted. Thebreakinplayfollowedan incident on Saturday when Indian pacers Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj said racist comments were directed at them as they fielded on the boundary line. “We had decided P7 PUNE, NEW DELHI, JAN 10 IN THE last four months, Kerala has recorded more than 7 lakh coronavirusinfections,morethan any other state in India. For the last 45 days, it has consistently been the top contributor of new cases.Thestatenowhasthehighest number of active cases in the country, comprising almost 30 per cent of India’s total. But while Kerala is the worst hotspot of the epidemic in the countrynow,whatisremarkable isthattheriseincaseshasnotresultedinasimilarincreaseinthe THE EXPRESS INTERVIEW ‘OUR DAILY TOLL NEVER WENT BEYOND 25’ K K SHAILAJA KERALA HEALTH MINISTER VARINDER BHATIA CHANDIGARH, JANUARY 10 FORCED TO scrap his visit to Karnal Sunday after farm protesters took over the venue, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar accused OppositionpartiesandstateBKU leader Gurnam Singh Chadhuni of inciting people to disrupt law and order, and insisted that the Centre will not repeal its new agriculture laws. Explosion in equipment likely began fire in which 10 kids died TABASSUM BARNAGARWALA MUMBAI, JANUARY 10 Police remove a group of spectators after Mohammed Siraj complained to umpires, in Sydney on Sunday. Reuters Saturday evening that if somethinglikethishappensagain,we willimmediatelyidentifythem,” anIndian teammanagementofficial told The Indian Express. On Sunday, Day 4 of the Test, as Bumrah was about to start running in during the 86th over of Australia’ssecondinnings,Siraj walked up to stand-in captain Ajinkya Rahane, and umpires Paul Reiffel and Paul Wilson. The 26-year-old debutant from Hyderabad said that a sectionof the crowd racially abused CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Covid curve doesn’t bend in Kerala but why state isn’t overly worried yet AMITABH SINHA & LIZ MATHEW won’t repeal farm laws number of deaths. In fact, Kerala has one of the lowest death counts among the major states. With more than 8 lakh confirmed infections so far, Kerala has the fifth highest caseload in the country. But there are 11 states that have recorded more deaths than Kerala, including states like Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, and Punjab, that have three to five times fewer cases. The state government says that unlike many other places, Kerala had managed to avoid a “sudden peak”, and that has ensured fewer deaths. “In other states, the cases CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 THE FIRE that killed 10 babies in a hospital in Bhandara, Maharashtra, early on Saturday was likely caused by an explosion in one of the several radiant warmers in the Sick New-born Care Unit (SNCU), believe the officials who carried out a preliminary inspection at the hospital on Sunday. The radiant warmer burst intoflamesaftertheexplosion— thefirstof twoloudnoisesheard byhospitalstaff thatnight—and the seven-day-old baby inside “was found burnt like coal”, officials said. The baby had been abandoned on a roadside, and broughttothehospitalbypolice. This and nine other babies were CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 BUSINESS AS USUAL BY UNNY ‘Our culture is different. They (BJP) can’t create fear of other religions here. It won’t work in TN’ KANIMOZHI LOK SABHA MP, DMK PAGE 12 From Lahore to London to New York via India: Ved Mehta’s unflinching gaze — and prose PAGE 1 ANCHOR AMRITA DUTTA BENGALURU, JANUARY 10 IN THE beginning, arguably, was Ved Mehta. Long before writers such as Salman Rushdie, Amitav Ghosh and Vikram Seth would become the ambassadors of Indian English writing to the West, a young man born in preIndependent India found a voice and space in the New York literary scene in the 1960s. Mehta died in New York at the age of 86. “We are extremely sorry to learn about the passing of Ved Mehta.Hewasamasteroftheautobiographical genre and a pioneer of Indian writing in English. We will remember him for his keen insight into Indian society and what it means to bridge the gap between the east and the West,” said Meru Gokhale, publisher, Penguin Press, Penguin Random House India. Mehta leaves behind a remarkable legacy as a memoirist, and essayist for The New Yorker — and a man who, early on, seized upon his subject: the remarkable life and times of Ved VED MEHTA 1934-2021 Mehta and his family, which he wrote about,overthreedecades, in his12-volumeautobiography, Continents of Exile. Born in 1934 in Lahore to a Punjabi family, young Ved lost his vision at the age of three. Remarkably for that time, his father, a London-educated public health officer refused to believe that was a permanent setback; he sent him first to a school for the blind in Bombay — and then, at the age of 15, to another blind school in Arkansas, US. HewasastudentinCalifornia when he began writing his first book, Face to Face (1957) — the autobiography of a young man in his 20s, who had overcome greatodds,fromblindnesstothe tumult of Partition, to fashion a sturdyself-independence.Itwas the first instance of what novelist and critic Nilanjana S Roy described as Mehta’s “need to set it all down”. “It was written out of a feeling that I could partly alleviatealifeof deprivationbywriting about it,” Mehta wrote. In the next two decades, Mehta found a mentor in The New Yorker editor William Shawn, who encouraged him to write on subjects as varied as theology and philosophy, R K Narayan and Satyajit Ray. In a 2009 Idea Exchange held in the Delhi officeof The Indian Express, he recalled: “One thing I learnt from The New Yorker was the CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar Addressing a press conference in Chandigarh after his visit to the venue of a BJP “kisan panchayat”inKarnal'sKaimlavillage wascancelled,Khattarsaid:“The Government is not going to CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 THE EDITORIAL PAGE BUDGET:INDIA’S NEW DEAL MOMENT BY SAJJID Z CHINOY PAGE 8 NEW DELHI, JANUARY 10 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 BUDGET ’21 COUNTDOWN IN & OUT OF COVID SHADOW E E X P L A I NE D DEMOCRATS SEEK ANSWERS FROM JUSTICE DEPT ON TRUMP’S ROLE MASSIVE POWER OUTAGE LEAVES PAK IN THE DARK Spend more when ● growth low A FISCAL stimulus in 2021-22 will be most effective to spur growth, particularly with many parts of the economy showing clear signs of a nascent recovery. Having preserved its spending power, the government plans to spend more in sectors such as healthcare, housing and constructionheavy infrastructure, which positively impact many industries. Looking for lithium toehold, India finds a small deposit in Karnataka ANIL SASI NEW DELHI, JANUARY 10 ALONGSIDE A move to tap into the global lithium value chain, India has initiated a concerted domestic exploration push for the alkali metal, a vital ingredi- ent of the lithium-ion rechargeablebatteriesthatpowerelectric vehicles (EVs), laptops and mobile phones. Preliminary surveys by the Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research (AMD), an arm of the Departmentof AtomicEnergy, is learnt to have shown the presence of 1,600 tonnes of lithium resources in the igneous rocks of the Marlagalla-Allapatna region of Karnataka’s Mandya district. A government official said the AMD is carrying out surface and sub-surface exploration for CONTINUED ON PAGE 2
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