eye MCS/204/2020-22RNINO.MAHENG2002/21899 THE SUNDAY EXPRESS MAGAZINE Zen and the Art of Minimalism MUMBAI,LATE CITY APRIL4,2021 With his 1961 canvas selling for ` 39.98 cr, he set a new record for Indian art. But, for VS Gaitonde, less was always more PAGES 11, 12, 13 14PAGES,`5.00 DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM 48-HOUR BAN CUT TO 24; ASSAM FINAL PHASE VOTING APRIL 6 ` 120 per kilo ` 148 per kilo ` 184 per kilo ` 56 per Dozen ECrelaxesbanafterHimantasayssorry; Congsayspollpanelfailedtodoitsduty Sarma told panel ban hurts him as seat goes to polls April 6; EC tore ‘impartiality’ page from rulebook, says Priyanka 2011 CD CASE PAGE 9 Bhushans: Court again rejects police plea to close case, says probe more Player blaming umpire (EC), something wrong with (Mamata) game, says PM SANTANU CHOWDHURY KOLKATA, APRIL 3 Captain Comrade ANANTHAKRISHNAN G & ANAND MOHAN J NEW DELHI, APRIL 3 FOR THE second time in nine years, a Delhi court has rejected a Delhi Police request to close a 2011 case regarding an audio CD and directed it to investigate the CD contents again. Thecaserelatestoapurported phoneconversationbetweenformer Law Minister Shanti Bhushan, SP leader Mulayam Singh Yadav and Amar Singh (who passed away last year) in which a voice, allegedly that of Bhushan,referstohislawyer-son PrashantBhushanwhocan“manage… very well” and to a then Supreme Court judge. There-investigationdirection came on January 28 this year. In its April 2014 “untrace report”, the Special Cell of Delhi Police hadsaidthoughShantiBhushan “suspected that “Amar Singh “could be behind the fabrication andcirculationof theaudioCDto malign his reputation” and that CONTINUEDONPAGE2 SUNDAY STORY BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma campaigning in Guwahati on Saturday. PTI RITIKA CHOPRA & MANOJ CG NEW DELHI, APRIL 3 THE ELECTION Commission Saturday reduced its 48-hour campaign ban on Assam Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma to 24 hours after the powerful BJPleaderofferedwhathecalled an“unconditionalregret”andrequested the poll panel to halve the ban period. Withdrawal or relaxation of campaignbansisrare.Duringthe 2014 Lok Sabha polls, the EC had lifted its ban on BJP leader Amit the electoral process. Shah's electioneering in With Saturday's rollUttarPradeshafterheasback, Sarma, who is sured the poll panel that contesting from the he would not “make any Jalukbari seat in the utterances violative” of third and final phase of the conduct code. Assam elections on Saying it was April 6, can now attend “deeply dismayed and DECISION rallies and meetings disappointed,” the duringthelast24hours 2021 Opposition Congress, before campaigning ASSAM which filed the comends in the state. plaintthatledtotheban,saidthe Beginning 8 am Sunday, he is move raised “several doubts” slated to appear at a string of raland the poll panel had “singu- lies and road shows including larly failed” to discharge its obli- one with Home Minister Amit gations to preserve the purity of Shah in Suwalkuchi at 3 pm. Pinarayi Vijayan, the face of the ruling party, has rewritten the rules of the game. But will that be enough to see him and LDF through? TheEC'sinitialorderFridaydebarred Sarma for the rest of the campaign. He was penalised for his remark against Bodoland People's Front Chairperson HagramaMohilary.Interestingly, the same day, the EC also transferredhisbrotherandGoalparaSP Sushanta Biswa from the district. The EC decision to ban him was taken on a complaint by the Congress that Sarma had "openly threatened" to send Bodoland Peoples' Party (BPF) chief Hagrama Mohilary to jail by "misusing" the National CONTINUEDONPAGE2 PRIME MINISTER Narendra Modi Saturday criticised West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee saying her questioning the credibility of the Election Commission,securityforcesand EVMs was a sure sign of her impending defeat. Addressing a public meeting at Tarakeshwar in Hooghly district, Modi said: “On the cricket field, if a player keeps raising questionsabouttheumpire’sdecisions...you can assume that there’s a problem with (his/her) game….Didi used to believe in the same security forces and Election Commission but she is defaming them today. The same agency and EVMs were good when it helped you to come to power in Bengal for 10 years," he said. Modi said he will come to West Bengal after May 2 (the countingday)toattendtheoathtaking ceremony of the new Chief Minister who will be from the BJP. "The two phases of phases of polling have sealed the outcome CONTINUEDONPAGE2 In election playbook: Central agencies come knocking on Opposition’s doors EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, APRIL 3 An injured security person in Bijapur on Saturday. PTI Chhattisgarh: Five security personnel killed in 3-hr gunbattle RAIPUR, APRIL 3 AT LEAST five security personnel werekilled,morethantwodozen suffered serious injuries and some are feared missing after an exchangeoffirebetweensecurity forces and Maoists Saturday in Chhattisgarh'sBijapur,policesaid. Two Maoists, including a woman,werealsokilledafterthe three-hourgunbattle,policesaid. Officialssaidthebodyof only one of those killed could be recovered by late tonight. Seven CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 MAHARASHTRA ■InSeptember2019,amonthbefore the assembly polls in Maharashtra,theEDregisteredan alleged money laundering case against NCP chief Sharad Pawar andhisnephewAjitPawarincon- nection with the Maharashtra StateCooperativeBankscam.The case is still under investigation. ■ In August 2019, the ED questioned MNS chief Raj Thackeray in connection with an alleged money laundering case pertaining to IL&FS group’s loan equity investment of over Rs 850 crore in a company called Kohinoor CTNL, of which Thackeray had been a partner until 2009. The case is still under investigation. WEST BENGAL ■ In February this year, the CBI Heat turned ● onMaoists THE ENCOUNTER comes 10 days after five security personnel were killed when Naxals blew up their bus in Narayanpur, the first major attack this year. This operation was meant to target Hidma, a key Maoist leader, and inflicted “heavy losses,” police said. questionedRujiraBanerjee, wife of TMC leader Abhishek Banerjee, nephew of Chief MinisterMamataBanerjee,inan alleged coal scam case. It also summoned Ankush Arora, husband of Abhishek’s sister-in-law Menaka Gambhir, and her father-in-law Pawan Arora. ■ In March, the ED summoned state minister Partha Chatterjee andformerministerMadanMitra intwocasesrelatingtochitfunds. Botharecontestingtheassembly elections on TMC tickets. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Patients face a shortage of oxygen beds at the GMC Hospital in Aurangabad. Tabassum Barnagarwala TABASSUM BARNAGARWALA AURANGABAD, APRIL 3 A SEVERE shortage has sent the prices of oxygen cylinders soaring across Maharashtra. Aurangabad, where the positivity rates were the highest in the state March-end, is particularly hard hit, with all oxygenated bedsoccupiedovertheweekend, andpatientsdesperatelyseeking to treat themselves at home. All 2,214 oxygen beds were occupied over Friday and Saturday in the district, where the positivity rate was 43.8 per centintheclosingdaysof March. Of a total 15,484 active cases, AVISHEK G DASTIDAR NEW DELHI, APRIL 3 The world’s highest railway bridge, over river Chenab. Courtesy: Afcons/Northern Railway A HALF-A-KILOMETER long arch, the defining feature of the world’s highest railway bridge over river Chenab, is set to be completedonMonday.Andwith this, the biggest civil-engineering challenge faced by any railway project in India in recent 4,600 are under home isolation. Most are mild, said doctors, but some are moderately ill, and require oxygen support. Since March, the demand for medical oxygen has risen across Maharashtra. The current daily requirement of medical oxygen in the state is 700-750 metric tonnes, up from 150-200 until the end of February. In Aurangabad, the daily requirement is 49.5 metric tonnes, up from 15-17 metric tonnes until February end. Thereisnoshortageofoxygen forpatientsadmittedtohospitals, buthospitalsarerunningshortof oxygenatedbeds.Forpatientsbeing turned away and advised CONTINUEDONPAGE2 49,447 FRESH INFECTIONS State reports most cases since pandemic began, strict restrictions likely to be announced today EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE MUMBAI, APRIL 3 A DAY after Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray warned of a possible lockdown in the state, he held separate meetings with various stakeholders on Saturday to build consensusonrestrictionsthathe said had to be imposed to break the chain of transmission of Covid-19. Maharashtra on Saturday recorded 49,447 freshinfections – its highest one-day rise since the pandemic began last year. Thetotalcaseloadnowstands at 29.53lakh,of which4.01lakhare active cases. From 1.3 lakh on Chenab arch to bridge distance between Kashmir, Kanyakumari E E X P L A I NE D GARGI VERMA THE INCOME Tax department’s raids Friday on DMK leader Stalin’sdaughterSenthamaraiin TamilNaduandtheEnforcement Directorate’sattachmentofproperties Saturday of TMC leaders Kunal Ghosh and Satabdi Roy in West Bengal fit a pattern. Be it the run-up to a state assembly election or Lok Sabha polls, central agencies — from the ED to CBI to I-T — have a knack of knocking on the doors of Opposition leaders in the states they control. TheagenciesdenyOpposition allegations that their actions are promptedbypolitics,butoverthe years a pattern has emerged. Consider these: Oxygen alarm bells in Maharashtra, hospital beds running out, shortage of cylinders history, will be over. The 5.3-metre last piece of metal will be fitted at the highestpointonMondayandjointhe two arms of the arch that currentlystretchtowardseachother from both the banks of the river. This will complete the shape of thearchthatwill thenloomover thetreacherousChenab,flowing some 359 metres below. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Uddhav Thackeray March 15, the number of active cases in the state have nearly tripled. There were 277 deaths registered on Saturday, taking the total toll to 55,656 across the state. Mumbai also breached the 9,000-mark, registering 9,108 cases–itshighestsingle-dayrise so far. Thackerayheldconsultations with senior journalists, gym and multiplex owners as well as CONTINUEDONPAGE2 ECONOMY FACEBOOK DETAILS OF 533 MN USERS GLOBALLY, 6 MN FROM INDIA POSTED ONLINE FOR FREE PAGE 8 WORLD PROTESTERS DEFY CRACKDOWN, FIVE KILLED IN MYANMAR PAGE 7 MP tribal women script success story — in Vogue, fashion industry PAGE 1 ANCHOR IRAM SIDDIQUE MANDU, APRIL 3 TILL FIVE days ago, Sita Vasuniya (25) was an unknown tribal woman in the quiet town of Mandu, 35 km from Dhar. But her anonymity ended when her photograph, draped in a beige and golden Maheshwari silk sari which she had hand-printed in bright hues of red and black, got picked up by Vogue Italia’s digi- tal edition on March 29. Similarly, Kiran Davre (20), from the neighboring village of Sulibardi,wasaMicrobiologystudent who also helped out on her family’sone-acrefarm.Today,she is considering modelling assignmentsinMumbai,after her photographs, in a bright yellow sari handprinted by her, did the rounds of the fashion industry. Sita and Kiran are part of a group of 10 tribal women who are scripting their own stories of economic and social independence — one sari at a time. It was only in January that thesewomen, fromneighboring villagesin Mandu,wereroped in for Dhara, a self-help group set up by the district administration toprovidesustainablelivelihood to women under Madhya Pradesh’s Ek Jila, Ek Utpad Scheme. There are two other such groups — Suraj and Chandani. Helmed by Dhar'sAdditional DistrictMagistrateSaloniSidana, the group was trained in the traditional handicraft, albeit with a modern twist which included innovation in the texture of fabric, design and colour. Instead of the conventional 'Bagh' design of flower motifs, Sita Vasuniya’s photograph on Vogue Italia’s digital edition; (above) women of the self-help group. Courtesy: Aditi Gupta the district administration tied up with the National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT) and Nation Institute of Design (NID) to explore new designs. Meanwhile, a team of 40, headed by Aman Akash, part of Enactus SRCC, an NGO, conducted a market survey to understand the demands in the textile industry and the ways to reinvent.Theteamalsocreateda database of prospective clients. “We wanted to create productsthatappealtoallagegroups, and women in different professions who can wear these saris in various seasons. We came up with several designs, playing around with the geometry, and alsoexperimentingwiththefabric,” said Sidana. A local handicraft artist, Gurudutt Kathe, was roped in to train the women. They learnt to print the wooden blocks on delicate fabric, experimenting with various forms — from Batik to Dabu printing. They were also trained in threadwork and hand painting. But when the first batch of sariswereready,thesecondwave of Covid-19madetravellingdifficult. Aditi Gupta, a Delhi-based 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.