SATURDAY www.thestatesman.com 24 FEBRUARY 2018 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 16+4 |`3|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR P5 SENSEX 34,142.15 +322.65 WEATHER Generally cloudy sky. Mist/shallow fog in the morning with possibility of thundery development in the afternoon/evening. Maximum and minimum temperatures will be around 30 and 14 degrees Celsius respectively. RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY P9 NIFTY 10,491.05 +108.35 Min. 37% Max: 31.1°C (+6) SUN RISES 06:51 hrs MOON RISES 12.33 hrs Min: 15.5°C (+4) SUN SETS 18:17 hrs MOON SETS 02:30 hrs ` vs $ 64.73 +31.00 PAISE GOLD 29,380.00 +25.00 Cops descend on Delhi CM's house STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE THUMBNAILS Afghan President Ashraf Ghani (L) and India's MoS, external affairs, M J Akbar arrive at the TAPI gas pipeline project inauguration in Herat province on Friday. Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India on Friday ceremonially broke ground on the Afghan section of the multi-billion dollar gas pipeline expected to AFP help ease energy deficits in South Asia. Pakistan on watchlist: Global money-laundering watchdog Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has decided to place Pakistan back on its terrorist financing watchlist, a Pakistani government official and a diplomat said on Friday, in a likely blow to Pakistan’s economy and its strained relations with the United States. It comes days after reports that Pakistan had been given a three-month reprieve before being placed on the list, which could hamper banking and hurt foreign investment. Sunanda Pushkar death: The Supreme Court on Friday sought the response of the Delhi Police on a plea filed by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy seeking an SIT probe into the death of Congress MP Shashi Tharoor's wife Sunanda Pushkar. A bench of Justices Arun Mishra and A M Khanwilkar issued a notice to the police on Swamy's plea, leaving open the question of maintainability of the petition. The court was hearing Swamy's appeal against the Delhi High Court's 26 verdict dismissing his plea for a probe into Pushkar's death by a court-monitored Special Investigation Team. P2 Elections to 59 RS seats announced: The Election Commission on Friday announced that polls to 59 Rajya Sabha seats will be held on 23 March. Following the elections, the BJP's strength in the Upper House is expected to rise. Fifty-eight Rajya Sabha seats will be falling vacant in April while a by-poll for a seat from Kerala will also be held on the same day. The elections will take place on March 23 and the counting of votes will held the same evening, the commission said in a statement. I said the "illegal" raid was aimed at “insulting and humiliating” Mr Kejriwal. AAP MP Sanjay Singh said the party will agitate outside district headquarters and state capital headquarters to protest the raid. A senior police officer said, "During investigation PWD department was asked to submit the CCTV footage of the night meeting held between chief secretary and AAP MLAs at CM's residence. But despite repeated requests, PWD department did not submit the CCTV footage." The officer saidHarender Singh, Additional DCP North and Commissioner of Delhi Police met on Thursday night to discuss the delay in investigation due to PWD officials not providing CCTV footage of the CM's residence and got his nod for conducting the raid. The officer said there is a possibility of the CCTV footage being tampered with. "We have a forensic team to examine whether the footage was tampered with or not. We have also interrogated the staff which work at the CM's residence and called the specific staff who were present that night," said the officer. Meeting with LG: Kejriwal and his Cabinet collaegues later met Lt Governor Anil Baijal and highlighted the problems faced by the government after officers decided to boycott meetings called by ministers following the alleged ‘Show same zeal in probing Loya case’ STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 23 FEBRUARY Soon after Delhi police team descended on the Chief Minister's residence on Friday to search for evidence related to the alleged assault on Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal broke his silence and said he fights for rights of people. He asked the police if they can show the same spirit in investigating Judge Loya's death. Talking to the media outside his house, Kejriwal said he appreciates Delhi Police's swift action in Delhi Chief Secretary's assault case, but asked when police will also question BJP president Amit Shah in the Judge Loya's death. ''The way police and investigating agencies are probing the matter of assault on Delhi chief secretary is worthy of praise but I would like to see them show the same spirit in investigating the matter of Judge Loya's death and question BJP president Amit Shah in the matter,'' he said. The chief minister also took to micro-blogging site Twitter to express his views on the police presence at his house. "A huge posse of policemen was sent to my residence.The entire CM residence is being searched over allegations of two slaps. But when will Amit Shah be questioned in con- nection with Judge Loya's death," Kejriwal tweeted. The Delhi police has already arrested MLA Prakash Jarwal and Amanatullah Khan, for allegedly assaulting Anshu Prakash at the CM's residence during a meeting on Monday night. Later addressing a public meeting in Bindapur, Kejriwal raking up the issue of Centre's alleged obstacles to AAP government's developmental work, said he fight for rights of people. "They block our files, delay our projects and when we say anything to officers, they get offended. I agree that I fight a lot. I fight with centre, Congress, Lieutenant Governor, officers, but I only fight for people," Kejriwal said, adding that he has never fought to get a job for his children. SILVER 38,600.00 00.00 BRENT CRUDE (IN $) 66.20 -0.19 ASHOK TUTEJA NEW DELHI, 23 FEBRUARY NEW DELHI, 23 FEBRUARY Delhi police searching Delhi Chief Minister Arvind KejriwSNS al's residence in New Delhi on Friday. P16 India, Canada pledge to neutralise terror; ink 6 pacts MLA justifies assault on CS NEW DELHI, 23 FEBRUARY n the ongoing tussle between the Aam Aadmi Party government in Delhi and the bureaucracy, chief minister Arvind Kejriwal suffered another blow when Delhi Police raided his residence in Civil Lines area on Friday morning and seized recordings of CCTV footage to investigate chief secretary Anshu Prakash's claims of being assaulted and beaten by AAP MLAs late on Monday night. The raid comes after the arrest of two AAP MLAs, Prakash Jerwal and Amanatullah Khan and questioning of VK Jain, Kejriwal's advisor, on Thursday, who confirmed to the police that the chief secretary was physically attacked by Jerwal and Khan. A fuming Kejriwal took to Twitter to record his displeasure. “A huge posse of policemen was sent to my residence. The entire CM residence is being searched over allegations of two slaps,” he tweeted. “But when will Amit Shah be questioned in connection with Judge Loya's death.” The AAP later held a Press conference where they accused Delhi Police of acting like a bully at the behest of the Centre. They KOHLI TARGETS ANOTHER SERIES VICTORY P12 AAP livid over raid; Kejriwal, ministers meet Delhi Lt-Governor Max.94% TEMPERATURE RED-CARPET WELCOME FOR IVANKA TRUMP IN SOUTH KOREA ‘SOLAR POWER MAKES SENSE’ COURT DENIES LALU BAIL IN ANOTHER FODDER SCAM CASE Days after the Delhi chief secretary accused AAP legislators of assaulting him, party MLA Naresh Balyan on Friday justified the act, saying anyone obstructing the work for the common man deserves a beating. "They are taking up to three to six months for doing work which should be done in three days. Why? Because Delhi Chief Minister abolished the commission system. And as this system was eradicated, they started sitting on the files. Whatever happened to the Chief Secretary...I say they should be beaten up... Whoever obstructs work being done for the common man, should get the same treatment," Balyan said IANS at a rally. attack on the chief secretary. Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said Baijal has assured Kejriwal that he will speak to bureaucrats to ensure that the work of the Delhi government is not affected. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday sought to shed his government’s image of being soft on ‘Khalistan’ supporters as India and Canada came out with a framework for cooperation to counter the threats posed by global Islamic and Sikh terrorist outfits. The two countries committed to work together to neutralise the threats emanating from terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda, ISIS, Haqqani Network, LeT, JeM, Khalsa International and the International SikhYouth Federation, the framework agreement said. This came after Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a veiled reference to Canada virtually turning a blind eye towards the activities of anti-India Sikh elements operating from its soil, told Trudeauthattheirtwonations must not tolerate those who promote separatism. The two countries recognised the urgent imperative to disrupt recruitment, terrorist movements and the flow of foreign terrorist fighters, address the threat posed by cross-border and statesponsored terrorism, stop sources of terrorist financing, dismantle terrorist infrastructure and prevent supply of arms to terrorists and counter violent extremism and radicalisation to violence. They emphasised the need to deny operating space to terrorist and violent extrem- Prime Minister Narendra Modi hugs his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau during the ceremonial reception at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi on Friday. SUBRATA DUTTA The two countries committed to work together to neutralise the threats emanating from terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda, ISIS, Haqqani Network, LeT, JeM, Khalsa International and the International Sikh Youth Federation, the framework agreement said ist groups, the framework document said. This was in addition to the joint statement issued after the talks between the two leaders.The two countries also signed six agreements, including one on enhancing energy cooperation. The joint statement said the two leaders called for bringing terrorists to justice and holding accountable state sponsors of terrorism, including cross-border terrorism.They further emphasised that no country should allow its territory to be used for terrorist and violent extremist activities. In his statement to the media after the talks with Trudeau lasting nearly two hours, Modi said those who Maldives warns India against interference Outrage over lynching of Kerala tribal youth PM vows to punish PNB fraudsters MALE, 23 FEBRUARY STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, 23 FEBRUARY PTI The Maldives has warned India against taking “any actions” that could hinder resolving the political crisis in the country, as New Delhi expressed its deep dismay over the extension of emergency in the island nation. The Maldivis' Foreign Ministry in a statement late last night said President Abdulla Yameen's government takes note of the public statements issued by the Indian Government that“ignore the facts and ground realities” with regard to the ongoing political developments in the Maldives. It said that India's assertion that the extension of the state of emergency for 30 days was unconstitutional is aclear“distortionoffacts,which ignore the constitution and PTI laws of the Maldives.” The Kerala police on Friday arrested two persons in connection with the death of a tribal youth, who was allegedly beaten to death by a mob on suspicion of theft. A 27-year-old tribal youth, who was said to be "not of sound mind",was allegedly beaten to death, on suspicion of theft by the locals at Kadukumanna, in Attappady in Kerala's Palakkad districton Thursday. The victim, identified as Madhu, was a resident of Kadukamanna tribal hamlet. The death of the tribal youth caused outrage on social media. The local people handed him over to the Agali police around 6.30pm on Thursday after thrashing the youth with sticks. Some from the mob took selfies after thrashing the youth. Police said after catching the youth from nearby forests around 4 p.m, the local people attacked him with sticks for allegedly stealing valuables from the house of a local person three days ago and handed him over to the Agali police around 6.30 p.m. The police said he collapsed and died in the police jeep when they were taking him to the Government Tribal Specialty Hospital at Kottathara. An attempt to murder case has been registered against 15 people. On the basis of the autopsy report, more relevant sections would be applied, police said. USA tightens H1-B visa norms; B Indian firms likely to be hit PNB fraud: ED freezes `44 crore Nirav Modi assets, summons wife PTI MUMBAI/NEW DELHI, 23FEBRUARY WASHINGTON, 23 FEBRUARY The Trump administration has announced a new policy that makes very tough the procedure of issuing H-1B visas to those to be employed at one or more third-party worksites, a move that will hugely impact Indian IT companies and their employees. Under the new policy, a company would have to go an extra mile to prove that its H1B employee at a third-party worksite has specific and nonqualifying speculative assignments in speciality occupation. The H-1B programme offers temporary US visas that allow companies to hire highly skilled foreign professionals working in areas with shortages of qualified American workers. Indian IT companies, which are among the major beneficiaries of H-1B visas, have a significant number of employees deployed at third-party worksites. A significant number of American banking, travel and commercial services depend on on-site IT workers from India. The new move announced yesterday through a sevenpage policy empowers the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to issue H-1B visas to an employee only for the period for which he/she has work at a third-party worksite. The latest policy memo- randum is a part of President Donald Trump's 'Buy American and Hire American Executive Order' and the directive to protect the interests of US workers, the USCIS said. As such the issuing of H-1B visas could be of less than three years. This would reverse the tradition of issuing the H1B visas for three years at a time. Effective immediately, the new guidance comes weeks ahead of the beginning of the H-1B visas filing season, which is expected to be April 2, for the fiscal year 2019 beginning October 1, 2018. The guidance says in order for an H-1B petition involving a third-party worksite to be approved, the petitioner must show by a preponderance of evidence that the beneficiary will be employed in a speciality occupation and the employ- er will maintain an employeremployee relationship with the beneficiary for the duration of the requested validity period. When H-1B beneficiaries are placed at third-party worksites, the companies must demonstrate that they have specific and non-speculative qualifying assignments in a speciality occupation for that beneficiary for the entire time requested on the petition. While an H-1B petition may be approved for up to three years, the USCIS will, in its discretion, generally limit the approval period to the length of time demonstrated that the beneficiarywillbeplacedinnon-speculative work and during which the petitioner will maintain the requisite employer-employee relationship, an official statement said. challenge sovereignty, unity and integrity of the two nations would not be tolerated at any cost.Trudeau said he had discussed a broad range of bilateral issues as well as international developments, including the situation in Afghanistan. He said Canada was committing to strengthening ties with India in different areas. Earlier on Friday morning, Modi received Trudeau with a bear hug at his ceremonial welcome at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, in a clear attempt to put to rest the speculation that New Delhi was cold-shouldering the Canadian leader for not addressing its concerns over the activities of‘Khalistan’ elements. PTI Expanding its probe into the alleged PNB fraud, the Enforcement Directorate today summoned Nirav Modi's wife Ami for questioning even as the agency froze bank deposits and shares worth about Rs 44 crore of the diamantaire. The Enforcement Directorate also seized a huge collection of imported watches from a workshop location linked to the billionaire diamond jewellery businessman. The ED officials said they have put fresh freeze orders on bank accounts containing Rs 30 crore and shares worth Rs 13.86 crore of the Nirav Modi group under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). Besides summoning Modi's wife Ami, who is an American citizen, the central probe agency has called his uncle and Gitanjali Gems promoter Mehul Choksi for questioning in the case on February 26 at the Enforcement Directorate office in Mumbai, they said. Modi, who failed to keep his date for questioning yesterday, has also been issued summons to appear before the agency on the same day. The agency seized a large collection of imported watches, 176 steel almirahs, 158 corrugated boxes and 60 other containers after searches at multiple locations linked to Modi over the last week, officials said. The ED, yesterday had seized deposits, shares and luxury cars worth over Rs 100 crore from the businesssman and his group. Fresh summonses were issued yesterday against Modi after he failed to appear before the agency. Modi had cited the temporary suspension of his passport and pending business issues as reasons for his nonappearance. The total seizure by the ED in the case is now over Rs 5,870 crore, officials claimed, adding it is being independently valued. Another fraud: The CBI has registered a case against a Delhi-based diamond jewellery exporter for an alleged bank loan fraud to the tune of Rs 389.85 crore towards Oriental Bank of Commerce. The CBI has booked Dwarka Das Seth International Pvt Ltd for the alleged fraud. Six months after the public sector bank filed a complaint with the CBI, the agency booked the company, and Sabhya Seth, Reeta Seth, Krishna Kumar Singh, Ravi Singh - all directors of the firm - and another company named Dwarka Das Seth SEZ Incorporation. NEW DELHI, 23 FEBRUARY Breaking his silence over the Rs 11,400-crore fraud at India's second-biggest PSU bank, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday warned of stringent action against those involved in financial irregularities and said loot of public money will not be tolerated. Days after the Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud -- allegedly masterminded by diamantaire Nirav Modi -- came to light, the Prime Minister asked the management of financial institutions as well as the supervisory bodies to do their job diligently to check such frauds. “I want to make it clear that this government has been taking strict action against financial irregularities and will continue to take strict action,” he said at Global Business Summit organised by the EconomicTimes.“System will not tolerate loot of public money,” the PM said. Nirav Modi, whose diamond creations have draped Hollywood stars such as Kate Winslet and Dakota Johnson, and firms linked to him are alleged to have acquired fraudulent letters of undertaking (LoUs) from one PNB branch in Mumbai between 2011 and 2017 to obtain loans from Indian banks overseas. Investigative agencies have raided Modi's properties and arrested bank employees and persons linked to his firms. Without naming the alleged kingpin of the fraud, Nirav Modi and PNB, the Prime Minister said the management of financial institutions, auditors and regulators should perform their duty earnestly.
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