CMYK THURSDAY www.thestatesman.com 29 MARCH 2018 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 20 |` 5.00|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR P7 SENSEX 32,968.68 -205.71 WEATHER Sultry weather. Rain/thundershower may occur in afternoon/ evening. Max and min temp around 36 and 26 deg celsius, resp. RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY P4 NIFTY 10,113.70 -70.45 ` vs $ 65.18 21 PAISE Fb announces steps to protect users’ privacy Min. 39% Max: 35.3°C (+1) SUN RISES 05:32 hrs MOON RISES 15.51 hrs Min: 26.0°C (+2) SUN SETS 17:51 hrs MOON SETS 03:54 hrs GOLD 29,630.00 -55.00 Govt issues notice to Fb over data breach WASHINGTON, 28 MARCH Full moon on 31 March THUMBNAILS SAY CHEERS: Chinese President Xi Jinping and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing during the latter’s recent visit to China. KCNA/AFP V-C of NUJS resigns: The Vice-Chancellor of C National University of Juridical Sciences, P Ishwara Bhat, resigned on Wednesday following protests by law students demanding his resignation. The protests erupted earlier in the day over the scathing criticism of the V-C in the review commission report and the institute's “decline” under Professor Bhat. Charges against Bhat range from financial irregularity and failure to build on the existing infrastructure and retain best faculty to judging a student by her/his caste, all of which students feel have resulted in the deterioration of this P13 “once prestigious institute.” NEW DELHI, 28 MARCH Facebook said today it will overhaul its privacy settings tools to put users “more in control” of their information on the social media website. The updates include improved access to Facebook's user settings and tools to easily search for, download and delete personal data stored by Facebook. Meanwhile, a new privacy shortcuts menu will allow users to quickly increase account security, manage who can see their information and activity on the site and control advertisements they see. “We've heard loud and clear that privacy settings and other important tools are too hard to find and that we must do more to keep people informed,” chief privacy officer Erin Egan and deputy general counsel Ashlie Beringer said in a blog post. “We're taking additional steps in the coming weeks to put people more in control of their privacy,” they confirmed. The new features follow fierce criticism after it was revealed millions of Facebook users' personal data was harvested by a British firm linked to Donald Trump's 2016 campaign - although Facebook said they have been “in the works for some time.” Earlier this month, The government today issued a notice to social networking giant Facebook, seeking its response over the user data breach and details of the measures it has put in place to ensure safety and prevent misuse of personal data. The Ministry of Electronics and IT (Meity) today said that a notice seeking details relating to breach of data from Facebook had been sent to Cambridge Analytica particularly with regard to reports in the media about questionable practices attributed to the UKbased firm in their efforts to influence elections. “It is felt that there is a need for further information about the data breach from Facebook. Accordingly, a letter has been issued by the Ministry of Electronics & IT on March 28, 2018 to Facebook seeking their response,” Meity said in a statement. The ministry has raised five questions including whether the personal data of Indian voters and users has been compromised by Cambridge Analytica. The ministry has sought a reply whether the company or its related or downstream agencies utilising FB data have previously been engaged PTI by any entities. SNS & PTI Fiscal deficit: The government is optimistic about meeting the 3.5 per cent fiscal deficit target for the current financial year ending March 31, Finance Secretary Hasmukh Adhia said on Wednesday. Earlier in the day the government reported a fiscal deficit of Rs 7.16 lakh crore or 120.3 per cent of the revised target which spooked the money markets with the rupee falling to 65.18 vs the dollar against 64.97 in previous close. Adhia said the finance ministry reviewed the fiscal position of the entire financial year. “We are meeting P8 the fiscal deficit target...’’ The government today unveiled plans to sell up to 76 per cent stake in Air India and transfer the management control to private players, starting the strategic disinvestment process for the debt-laden national carrier. Coming out with a detailed preliminary information memorandum on the stake sale, the Civil Aviation Ministry said the proposed disinvestment would include profit-making Air India Express and joint venture AISATS. The latter is an equal joint venture between the national carrier and Singaporebased SATS Ltd. While the government would retain 24 per cent stake in the national carrier, the winning bidder would be required to stay invested in the airline for at least three years. Start- ing off the disinvestment exercise -- a major initiative of the NDA government -- Expression of Interest (EoI) has been sought from various entities, including foreign airlines. The last date for submission of EoI is May 14 and intimation to the qualified interest bidders would be made on May 28. “It is the intention of Government of India to divest its residual shareholding through the process of dispersed disinvestment (ie would not be sold as a block) on such terms as may be prescribed in the Request for Proposal (RFP),” the memorandum said. Bidding can be done as a single player or as part of a consortium. The bidder should have a minimum net worth of Rs 5,000 crore and the requirement is subject to certain conditions depending on the class of entities. Among others, the ministry has said that each consortium member should have positive profit after tax in at least three of the immediately preceding five financial years from the EoI deadline. “However, if the member of the consortium is a scheduled airline operator in India, the condition to meet positive profit after tax shall not apply to such member provided shareholding of such member is restricted to maximum of 51 per cent of paid up equity share capital of the consortium (special purpose vehicle). “In case of a foreign airline (ie airline which NEW DELHI, 28 MARCH Taking a cue from their Australian counterpart, the BCCI on Wednesday banned controversial Steve Smith and David Warner from the 11the edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) starting from April 7 due to their involvement in the ball-tampering case. Announcing the ban, the BCCI in a statement said "The CoA, in consultation with BCCI Acting President C.K. Khanna, IPL Chairman Rajeev Shukla and BCCI Acting Hon. Secretary Amitabh Choudhary, has decided to ban Smith and Warner with immediate effect from participation in IPL 2018” "The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) hopes that the cricketers participat- ing in the IPL hold the highest regard for the Spirit of Cricket and Code of Conduct for Players and match officials," it added. The statement also clarified that the concerned IPL teams will be allowed replacement players. Talking to media persons, Shukla said that the BCCI was waiting for action by the ICC and the CA against these players before the BCCI decided on them. The IPL's decision comes after reports emerged in the Australian media that Cricket Australia (CA) has decided to slap a 12-month ban on Smith and Warner and a nine-month ban on Cameron Bancroft. Both Smith and Warner had stepped down from their captaincy of Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad, respectively. They were retained for a whopping Rs 12.5 crore each. Earlier Cricket Australia (CA) in a statement confirmed that it has suspended captain Steve Smith and vice captain David Warner for 12 months each and opener Cameron Bancroft CMYK BRENT CRUDE (IN $) 69.84 -0.27 Cong hits out at EC over date leak Poll panel probe body says it will re-examine the responses received STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 28 MARCH day after the Election Commission (EC) constituted a committee of its six senior officers to probe into alleged leak of the Karnataka poll schedule, the Congress criticised the EC for excluding the ruling BJP's IT cell head Amit Malviya (pic) in the panel's terms of reference while including the Karnataka Congress's social media in-charge Srivatsa in it. The EC's announcement of Karnataka Assembly poll dates on Tuesday was shadowed by a controversy with Malviya tweeting the voting and counting dates even before Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) O P Rawat, who was then addressing a press conference in the national capital, could declare them. When this was pointed out to him, the CEC had described it as a "very serious issue", asserting that the EC will investigate into it and take stringent legal and administrative action. The reports had then surfaced about Srivatsa also tweeting the same information at the same time as Malviya's tweet. Both got the polling date right and the counting date wrong. Both claimed they A is not a scheduled airline operator in India), the requirement to meet positive profit after tax requirement shall remain applicable,” it said. Bids by management and employees of companies participating directly or by forming a consortium would be considered subject to guidelines issued by the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM). The consortium can be along with a bank, venture capitalist, a financial institution or fund. Four other BCCI bans Smith and Warner from IPL STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE P11 SILVER 38,600.00 -250.00 had picked up their information from certain TV channels. Subsequently, the EC constituted an officers' panel to probe into alleged dates leak and give its report within seven days. In a series of tweets on Wednesday, Congress's communications in-charge Randeep Surjewala hit out at the EC on the issue. "Strange indeed! Has @ECI_India exonerated the ‘date leak’ BJP even before constituting the inquiry? Post ‘data leak’, a ‘date leak’ infringing upon the neutrality of EC, yet no questions being asked. Question is -- Why no question from BJP IT head?" Surjewala asked tagging the EC's Office Order dated 27 March that announced the constitution of the officers' probe panel. "Yesterday, Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi went to @ECI_India with BJP IT head’s explanation. Surprising that @ECI_India exonerates BJP IT head, Govt to sell 76 per cent stake in Air India NEW DELHI, 28 MARCH Small savings rates unchanged: The government decided not to tinker with the interest rates on small savings schemes, including NSC and PPF, for the April-June quarter. . “Interest rates for small savings schemes are to be notified on a quarterly basis,” the Finance Ministry said while notifying the rates for the first quarter of the financial year 2018-19. “Accordingly, the rates of interest on various small savings schemes for the first quarter of the financial year 2018-19 starting April 1, 2018 shall remain unchanged from those notified for the fourth quarter of the financial year 2017-18,” it said. whistleblower Christopher Wylie revealed Cambridge Analytica created psychological profiles on 50 million Facebook users via a personality prediction app. The app was downloaded by 270,000 people, but also scooped up their friends' data without consent -- as was possible under Facebook's rules at the time. Egan and Beringer also announced updates to Facebook's terms of service and data policy to improve transparency about how the site collects and uses data. AP adds from San Francisco: Three Facebook Messenger app users have filed a lawsuit claiming the social network violated their privacy by collecting logs of their phone calls and text messages. The suit, filed yesterday in a federal court in northern California, comes as Facebook faces scrutiny over privacy concerns. Facebook acknowledged on Sunday that it began uploading call and text logs from phones running Google's Android system in 2015. ISCO SHINES IN SPAIN PAIN FOR ARGENTINA P8 AGENCIES Max.90% TEMPERATURE SEBI USHERS IN REFORMS, CUTS MF COSTS CHANDRABABU UPS THE ANTE FREE TRADE CAN’T BE ONE-SIDED for nine months over a ball-tampering scandal in South Africa. Following the announcement, Cricket Australia has appointed wicketkeeper-batsman Tim Paine as the full time Test captain. According to a CA statement, Smith and Bancroft were banned from leadership positions for 12 months after completing their one-year ban from international and domestic cricket. Warner has, however, been banned from all leadership positions in Australian cricket for life. The three will be allowed to play club cricket and were encouraged by CA to do so "to maintain links with the cricket community". They were "required to undertake 100 hours of voluntary service in community cricket". subsidiaries of the airline -- AIESL (Air India Engineering Services Ltd), AIATSL (Air India Air Transport Services Ltd), HCI (Hotel Corporation of India) and AASL (Airline Allied Services Ltd) -- would be hived off through demerger or any other appropriate mechanisms. AIESL mainly provides maintenance and overhaul of engines while AIATSL is into ground and cargo handling services. HCI owns and operates two hotels in Delhi and Srinagar. AASL is the regional arm of Air India and flies to Tier II and III cities. “Air India has interests in other entities (Air India Engineering Services, Air India Air Transport Services, Airline Allied Services and Hotel Corporation of India) which are in the process of being transferred to a separate SPV and will not be a part of the proposed transaction,” the memorandum said. CBSE leaks: Re-exams ordered NEW DELHI, 28 MARCH Following reports about the alleged leaks of question papers, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) on Wednesday announced re-examination in the Class 10 mathematics and Class 12 economics subjects. The development has caused disappointment and resentment among students and their parents and teachers. CBSE said: "The Board has decided to reconduct the examinations in the following subjects (Class 10 mathematics and Class 12 ecoSNS nomics)." who initiated ‘date leak’ & constitutes an inquiry thereafter," he charged. Surjewala also tagged the EC's yesterday press note in his another tweet stating : "Intriguing events on 'date leak' & BJP's role appear on @ECI_India website. 1st EC gives a clean chit to BJP national IT head by keeping him out of purview of enquiry, yet uploads another 'Press Note' explaining BJP's version! Now, who is putting EC's credibility at stake?" The Congress leader was apparently pointing to the reference made by the EC's press note to Malviya's tweeting the Karnataka poll date while adding that "In another tweet, he (Malviya) also gave a reference of Times Now news channel as his source". Meanwhile, the EC's probe panel met on Wednesday to take stock of the responses received so far. "The Committee received the response so far from the following: Amit Malviya...Times Now TV channel, and Suvarna news channel. The Committee has decided to further examine the responses received so far and take further necessary action in this regard," said a statement issued by the EC. PTI adds: BJP's IT cell chief Amit Malviya, whose tweet declaring the Karnataka Assembly poll date before the Election Commission's announcement triggered a controversy, and a Karnataka news channel have told the poll panel that the source of their information was Times Now news channel. Times Now today told the Election Commission that it got the information from “informed sources”. It also said that “given that the information was not entirely accurate, it is obvious it was not a leak”. The three have responded to a notice by a probe committee set up by the poll panel yesterday to investigate the sources of the leak. Ahead of the announcement by CEC O P Rawat yesterday morning, Malviya had tweeted that voting will be held on May 12 and the counting will take place on May 18. He was correct about the day of the voting, but got the counting date wrong.Counting is on 15 May, according to EC. Mamata meets Sonia, asks Congress to join united Opposition front SNS & PTI NEW DELHI, 28 MARCH In a bid to forge Opposition unity, West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee today met UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and stressed the need for the Congress to be part of a front to take on the BJP. The Trinamul Congress leader also met a host of other Opposition leaders during her two-day visit to the national Capital. Banerjee had yesterday met NCP supremo Sharad Pawar and leaders of some regional parties, including NDA ally Shiv Sena, to explore possibilities of a “federal front” to take on the BJP in the next Lok Sabha polls. Banerjee today met disgruntled BJP leaders Yashwant Sinha and Shatrughan Sinha, besides having a telephone conversation with Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav, with whom she talked of a “oneto-one” fight in states. Today's meeting with Sonia Gandhi took place at her 10 Janpath residence and lasted around 20 minutes. The two leaders are understood to have discussed the present political scenario and the strategy to defeat the BJP in the next general elections and in various state elections due this year. “I told Sonia ji, we want the Congress to be part of the united Opposition,” Banerjee told reporters after the meeting. She also said that she wanted the Congress to win Karnataka, as it was strong there. “I am 100 per cent sure, when there is one single fight, the BJP will go,” she said. “I have told Sonia ji what the country wants is that there should be a state-wise one-to-one fight against the BJP Whichev. er party is the strongest in the state, that party should contest in that state against the BJP . “I have also discussed this issue with Sonia ji. The talks which we are having with the regional parties, we are trying to work together....We want the Congress also to be part of that,” Banerjee said. After today's meeting, she also alleged that in a bid to “finish democracy in the country, the BJP is spreading atrocities”. “Apart from political vendetta, the BJP does not do anything for the people of the country,” she claimed. The Bengal CM said the Congress should also help the “one-to-one fight” in the states and added that parties which had an alliance with the Congress would carry on with the tieups. “Lalu (Yadav) ji and Sharad (Yadav) ji have an alliance with the Congress. Their alliance will continue,” she said, adding that the Opposition party which was the strongest in a state should be supported by the others to oust the BJP . Banerjee's meeting with Sonia Gandhi was earlier scheduled for yesterday, but could not take place as the UPA chairperson was indisposed.
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