DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA JOURNALISM OF COURAGE MONDAY, MARCH 8, 2021, NEW DELHI, LATE CITY, 18 PAGES BUSINESS AS USUAL BY UNNY `6.00 (`8 BIHAR & RAIPUR, `12 SRINAGAR) WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM SINCE 1932 FIRST, MASSIVE RALLY IN KOLKATA Modi targets Mamata: TMC game of corruption over, time for real change Predicts Mamata’s ‘protest scooty’ will topple in Nandigram, says development begins now His Brigade tune: win-win with Didi once, Sonar Bangla a constant SANTANU CHOWDHURY Deadlock resolved, DMK gives 25 seats to Congress ARUN JANARDHANAN CHENNAI, MARCH 7 AFTER A week-long deadlock in seat-sharing negotiations ahead of the elections, the DMK on Sunday allotted 25 Assembly seats and the Kanyakumari Lok Sabha constituency to the Congress. DMKchiefM K Stalin and DECISION Tamil Nadu Congress 2021 Committeechief TAMIL KSAlagirisigned NADU aformalpactatthe DMK’s headquarters in Chennai. Despite their past association, the two parties had failed to reach an agreement for long. KOLKATA, MARCH 7 FOR OVER an hour at a massive election rally in Kolkata on Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi targeted Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee over her nephew’s alleged corruption, her government’s policies, and her party’s slogans. The BJP will rejuvenate Bengal and bring jobs and investment, he said. “This time they (TMC) are saying ‘Khela Hobe (Let us play)’. They are indeed very experienced players, and know how to play,” the Prime Minister said. “People of Bengal have been looted through corruption and scams.EvencycloneAmphanrelief funds were looted. You (TMC) have indulged in tolabazi (extortion),syndicates,andcommission-cuts. You have done so many scams that an Olympic Games on corruption can be organised,” he said. “You have played with the hard-earned money of the peopleand withtheir lives.You have closed down tea gardens. You CONTINUED ON PAGE 10 RAVIK BHATTACHARYA KOLKATA, MARCH 7 A video grab of the PM addressing a rally at Kolkata’s Brigade Parade Ground Sunday. Express Ujjwala to jumla...who can be bigger syndicate than Modi-Shah: Mamata EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE KOLKATA, MARCH 7 AS PRIME Minister Narendra ModiattackedMamataBanerjee and her government at his first campaign rally in West Bengal, the Chief Minister countered him with her own huge rally in Mamata Banerjee at a rally in Siliguri Sunday. Express Siliguri, calling him a “liar” and demanding an explanation for the high prices of auto fuels and cooking gas. “Prime Minister will have to answer why the prices of LPG, petrol and diesel are being increased. Otherwise, you have to leave,” she said. CONTINUED ON PAGE 10 THE PRIME Minister, who predicted on Sunday that the game was over (“khela shesh”) for the TrinamoolCongress,hadin2014 invited voters to choose a winwinof Narendra Modi in Delhi and Mamata DECISION Banerjee in Kolkata. 2021 “Aapke dono WEST BENGAL haath mein laddu,” he told an electionrallyatthesameBrigade Parade Ground in 2014. By the time the West Bengal Assembly elections came round CONTINUED ON PAGE 10 CONTINUED ON PAGE 10 EXPRESS NETWORK Days before Quad, Beijing to Delhi: Farmer kills Not rivals…don’t undercut each other himself at SHUBHAJIT ROY NEW DELHI, MARCH 7 JARKIHOLI: ACTIVIST SEEKS TO WITHDRAW COMPLAINT BUDGET SESSION SECOND LEG BEGINS TODAY PAGE 11 AS NEW Delhi prepares to participate in the first ever meeting of the leaders of the Quadrilateral grouping likely on March 12, Beijing Sunday said that China and India should stop “undercutting” each other, shed mutual “suspicion” and create “enabling conditions” by ex- panding bilateral cooperation to resolve the border issue. Chinese State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi made these remarks at his annual press conference in Beijing — seen as a signal to New Delhi as it plans to join the Quad meeting this week between Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US President Joe Biden, Japan PM Yoshihide Suga and Australian PM Scott Morrison. Wang was speaking on the sidelinesof theannualsessionof the National People’s Congress, China’s Parliament. Beijing views the Quad with suspicion.Threeyearsago,Wang had dismissed its revival as a “headline-grabbing” idea that, like“foam onthesea”,wouldget attention but “soon dissipate”. Hecalledforthe“theDragonand Elephant to not fight but dance”. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 After Rohingya held in Jammu, kids wait for parents, mother for son ARUN SHARMA JAMMU, MARCH 7 INSIDE A row of tin sheds on the outskirts of Jammu city, they waited — four hungry children for their parents, a mother for her son, a wife for her husband. At Kiryani Talab in Narwal on the outskirts of Jammu city, these are the family members of some of the 168 Rohingya men and women who were detained Saturdayafterbeingfoundwithout valid documents during a policeexercisetocollectbiometric details of the refugees from Myanmar. “When our parents did not returnhome yesterday, we cried and fell asleep without having food. I still don’t know where they are or when they will return,’’ says Mohammad-ulHassan, 11. Looking on are his siblings Jaibullah (8), Noor Hassan (7) and Asma Jan (4). According to their neighbours, Hassan’s parents Mohammad Hussain and Ismat Ara reached Jammu from Myanmar around eight years ago — Noor Hassan and Asma Jan were born here. All of those detained have been lodged at the Hiranagar sub-jail, which has been converted into a holding centre, withIGP(Jammu)MukeshSingh sayingthattheyfacedeportation CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Mohd-ul-Hassan and his siblings at their home near Jammu Sunday. Arun Sharma Tikri, eighth suicide since protest began ASHNA BUTANI AND SAKSHI DAYAL NEW DELHI, MARCH 7 THE BODY of a 48-year-old farmer from Hisar, Rajbir Singh, was found hanging from a tree near the Tikri border on Sunday morning. Police said it appeared that the farmer had committed suicide, and an inquiry was under way. Rajbir is the eighth person to have allegedly killed himself at the borders of the capital, demanding that the three farm laws be repealed. A suicide note was found in thepocketof Rajbir’skurta,other farmers protesting at the site said. Inspector Sunil Kumar, Station House Officer (SHO) of Bahadurgarh City police station, said, “We received information from other farmers regarding the matter. The deceased was CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 14-day quarantine, events cancelled: New virus outbreak in Europe strands Indian rider, his horse MIHIR VASAVDA NEW DELHI, MARCH 7 TEST, TRACE and isolate is the strategy. There’s a 14-day quarantine, frequent thermal scanning too. But this time, it’s the outbreak of Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1) among horses in Europe that is the reason. And caught in the middle of it are Tokyo Olympics-bound Indian horseman Fouaad Mirza and his mare, Dajara 4. Asian Games medallist Fouaad Mirza and his mare Dajara 4 are set to compete in the Tokyo Olympics. Express “It is serious. The virus is spreading like wildfire. It is very contagious and there have been casualties,manyof thematcompetition venues,” Mirza, who is set to become the first Indian rider to compete at the Games since Sydney 2000, told The Indian Express. The International Equestrian Federation,whichgoesbytheabbreviationFEI,saidonitswebsite that the virus originated in Spain’sValenciainthethirdweek of February. Since then, it has infected close to a hundred horses and, according to data available as of March 5, killed nine. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 E E X P L A I NE D PAGE 1 ANCHOR Virus that targets ● horses THE OUTBREAK of Equine Herpes Virus — EHV-1 strain — comes amid the Covid pandemic that has already put Europe’s health apparatus under severe strain. EHV is transmitted via close contact, coughing and through the air from horse to horse up to a distance of five metres. THE EDITORIAL PAGE ASLOWER RECOVERY BY JAHANGIR AZIZ PAGE 8 Internet imperialism by select few is unacceptable: Prasad P16 AASHISH ARYAN NEW DELHI, MARCH 7 THE GOVERNMENT will no longer accept “Internet imperialism”bya“selectfew”technology companies of the world and will ensure that they respect local ideas,culture,traditions,andsentiments, Union Information TechnologyMinisterRaviShankar Prasad told The Indian Express. The comments by Prasad, also the Law Minister, come in the backdrop of new guidelines for social media intermediaries announced by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). “Any kind of Internet imperialismbyaselectfewisplainlyunacceptable. If the internet is a global phenomenon, it has become so because it has empoweredpeopleacross.Ithascrossed boundariesofthephysicalworld. There is an extraordinary evolutionofinternetdemocracy.There CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 THE EXPRESS INTERVIEW RAVI SHANKAR PRASAD MINISTER OF IT, LAW & JUSTICE ‘Only 20 Indian (tech) firms worth a billion dollars. How will they fight big-tech guerrillas? Govts must act’ VIJAY SHEKHAR SHARMA FOUNDER & CEO, PAYTM PAGE 14 India-Pak thaw faces early test: visas for T20 World Cup NIRUPAMA SUBRAMANIAN & DEVENDRA PANDEY MUMBAI, MARCH 7 AMONG THE first tests of whether the latest thaw along theLineof Control(LoC)willlead to wider easing of tensions between India and Pakistan will be in another arena where the two remain bitter rivals: cricket. An official source in Pakistan told The Indian Express that the country’s cricket board wants a “guarantee” from the BCCI that the Government will grant visas to Pakistani fans to watch the T20 World Cup to be played in India later this year. 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.