WEDNESDAY www.thestatesman.com 06 JUNE 2018 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 16 |`5|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR P6 SENSEX 34,903.21 -108.68 BRITISH VOTERS ARE TURNING AGAINST BREXIT, POLL SHOWS INDIA, CHINA CONSIDER WAYS TO BOOST TIES MODI PROMISES HOUSING FOR ALL BY 2022 P10 NIFTY 10,593.15 -35.35 ` vs $ 67.15 -04 PAISE ‘FIFA CAN AFFORD MOROCCO HOSTING 2026 WORLD CUP’ P15 P12 GOLD 29,590.00 -40.00 SILVER 39,600.00 -100.00 BRENT CRUDE (IN $) 74.10 -1.19 No unprovoked attack shall go unanswered: Sitharaman RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY Court summons Tharoor as accused Cong MP told to appear before court on 7 July in Sunanda Pushkar case Max. 62% Min. 39% STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE Max: 41.4 °C (+1) SUN RISES 05:23 hrs MOON RISES 00:55 hrs Min: 30.4°C (+3) SUN SETS 19:17 hrs MOON SETS 11:49 hrs Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman onTuesday said the Army will continue to respect the ongoing Ramadan ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir but asserted that no unprovoked attack from across the border will go unanswered as the forces have been given the right to hit back. Sitharaman, addressing a press conference on the occasion of the fourth anniversary of the NDA government, said the Army was given the right to adequately respond to any cross border attacks or unprovoked firing. Notwithstanding India's announcement of a Ramadan ceasefire and talks between the Director General of Military Operations (DGMOs) of the two countries, there have been incidents of cross border firing along the Line of Control and International Border in Jammu and Kashmir and nearly a dozen grenade attacks by militants within a week in the Valley. “It is our duty to keep our borders safe.We shall be alert and ensure that no unprovoked attacks go without us responding. It is the duty of the defence ministry and the forces to keep India safe,” Sitharaman said. She was responding to questions on the firing along the IndoPak border despite the two sides agreeing for a truce. Sitharaman said the Army was taken on board before the Home Ministry WEATHER Partly cloudy sky with possibility of dust storm/thunderstorm towards evening/night. The maximum and minimum temperatures would be around 41 and 31 degrees Celsius respectively. TEMPERATURE THUMBNAILS India's first electric feeder bus launched on World Environment Day, in New Delhi on TuesIANS day Fashion designer Kate Spade found dead: Designer Kate Spade, one of the biggest names in American fashion, was found dead Tuesday in New York, police said. She was 55. Celebrity website TMZ said the designer hanged herself in her Park Avenue apartment. A police spokesperson confirmed Spade committed suicide but said the circumstances of her death were not yet clear. Tributes to Spade poured in ~ from celebrities, the fashion world and everyday women who admired her quintessential American style. AFP NEW DELHI, 5 JUNE A Delhi court on Tuesday summoned Congress MP Shashi Tharoor as an accused in connection with his wife Sunanda Pushkar's death, asking him to appear before it on 7 July. Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Samar Vishal took cognisance of the offences of abetment of Sunanda's "suicide" and cruelty towards her against Tharoor, which have been brought against him by Delhi Police under Section 306 (abetment of suicide) and Section 498 A (husband or his relative subjecting a woman to cruelty) of the Indian Penal Code. “I have heard the prosecutor. I have gone through and perused the charge sheet and the documents filed along with it. On the basis of police report (charge sheet), I take cognisance of offence of abetment of suicide of late Sunanda Pushkar and committing cruelty upon her by Dr Shashi Tharoor,” the judge said. “There exists sufficient grounds to proceed against Tharoor for commission of offences of Section 306 and 498 A of IPC. Issue summons to him for appearance for July 7,” the court added. Tharoor's lawyer Vikas Pahwa told media persons that "no offence" was made out against him, claiming that the prosecution's case was “absurd and preposterous”. “We shall be asking for a copy of the charge sheet and the documents relied upon by the prosecution. After going through them, we shall decide our further course of action. Dr Tharoor will take all legal remedies available to him in law," he said. In a statement he issued later, Tharoor too rejected the charges against him in connection with his wife's death as “preposterous and baseless”, calling them the "product of a malicious and vindictive campaign" against him that he will "vigorously" contest. He said he maintained his "steadfast conviction that ultimately the truth will prevail through the judicial system". The Congress leader said from the very start, he has "fully cooperated" with the investigating team and "continue to maintain that due legal process must be followed in all aspects related to this case". Pointing out that the matter is sub-judice, Tharoor refrained from commenting any further, urging the media to "respect my right to privacy as well as that of my family". On 28 May, Delhi Police had told the court that in an email sent to Tharoor nine days before her death, Sunanda had expressed her desire to die. Delhi Police also claimed before the court that Sunanda's mails and messages in social media before her "suicide" have been taken as her "dying declaration". More than four years after Sunanda was found dead in a five-star hotel in the national capital, Delhi Police had on 14 May 2018 chargedTharoorwithallegedly abetting her "suicide", telling a local court that he NEW DELHI, 5 JUNE The Supreme Court on Tuesday gave the go-ahead to the Centre for providing reservation in promotion in government jobs for employees belonging to the Scheduled Caste (SC) and Scheduled Tribe (ST) category in “accordance with law”. In a relief to the Centre, the apex court gave the order after taking into account the government's submissions that the entire promotion process has come to a“standstill” due to the orders passed by various high courts and also direction by the apex court for “status quo” in a similar matter in 2015. A vacation bench comprising Justices Adarsh Kumar Goel and Ashok Bhushan said the Centre was not “debarred” from making promotions in accordance with law in the matter subject to further orders. “It is made clear that the Union of India is not debarred from making promotions in accordance with law, subject to further orders, pending further consideration of the matter,” it said. Union minister and Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) president Ram Vilas Paswan welcomed the court order, saying it will re-open the doors to the members of the SC and ST com- munities for promotion in government jobs. “I thank the Supreme Court for its verdict on reservation in promotion to the SC/ST employees in government jobs. The doors that were closed will now re-open,” the Dalit leader said. The government said there were separate verdicts by the high courts of Delhi, Bombay and Punjab and Haryana on the issue of reservation in promotion to SC/ST employees and the apex court had also passed different orders on appeals filed against those judgements. “We will say you (Centre) can go ahead with promotion in accordance with law,” the bench told Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Maninder Singh, representing the Centre. During the hearing, the ASG cited the case laws on the issue of quota in promotion in gov- ernment jobs and stated that the apex court's 2006 judgement in M Nagaraj case would be applicable. The M Nagaraj verdict had said that creamy layer concept cannot be applied to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes for promotions in government jobs like two earlier verdicts of 1992 Indra Sawhney and others versus Union of India (popularly called Mandal Commission verdict) and 2005 E V Chinnaiah versus State of Andhra Pradesh, which dealt with creamy layer in Other Backward Classes category. Singh said the petition before the bench was the Centre's challenge to the Delhi High Court's August 23 last year verdict quashing government's order extending reservation in promotion to employees belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes SHASHI THAROOR CONGRESS MP should be summoned as an accused in the case as there was "sufficient evidence to proceed against him". In the nearly 3,000-page charge sheet in Sunanda's mysterious death, Delhi Police named Tharoor as the only accused, concluding that it was a case of suicide. It is another matter that an FIR was registered by Delhi Police on 1 January 2015 against unknown persons under Section 302 (murder) of the IPC in this case. Sunanda was found dead in a suite in a south Delhi hotel on the night of 17 January 2014. The police charge sheet, which has several annexures, noted that Sunanda died within four years of her marriage. The couple had married in August 2010. beyond five years from November 16, 1992. At the outset, the ASG referred to orders passed by the apex court earlier, including a reference made to a five-judge constitution bench, and contended that one of the orders says there would be“status quo” as far as reservation in promotion to SC/SC employees was concerned. He referred to a May 17 order passed by a bench headed by Justice Kurian Joseph in a similar matter in which it was said that pendency of petition before it shall not stand in the way of the Centre taking steps for the purpose of promotion. “How is the promotion taking place as of now?,” the bench asked. Responding to the query, the ASG said, “They are not. It is all standstill. This is the problem”. HDK to expand ministry today Amit Shah reaches out to NDA allies, to meet Badal, Thackeray PRESS TRUST OF INDIA PRESS TRUST OF INDIA BENGALURU/NEW DELHI, 5 JUNE NEW DELHI/MUMBAI, 5 JUNE A fortnight after becoming Chief Minister, H D Kumaraswamy will expand his two-member Cabinet tomorrow with over 20 ministers likely to take oath. Sources said while the JD-S will have 9 new ministers, the Congress will have nearly 12 of its legislators inducted into the Cabinet. Lone BSP MLA N Mahesh will also be a part of the Cabinet expansion. The new ministers will take oath after days of hard and hectic bargaining between the ruling coalition partners, the JDS and the Congress. Kumaraswamy said in Bengaluru that at least 9 MLAs from the JD-S would be inducted into the ministry in the first phase. The Congress finalised its names in New Delhi at a meeting with party chief Rahul Gandhi, senior Karnataka leaders like former CM Siddharamaiah, Deputy CM G Parameshwara and party leaders Dinesh Gundu Rao and D K Shivakumar, besides AICC general secretary incharge K C Venugopal. Gandhi is learnt to have given his nod to the list of around 12 ministers which includes Shivakumar who is likely to get an important portfolio. Reaching out to NDA allies ahead of the 2019 general elections, BJP chief Amit Shah will meet Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray in Mumbai on Wednesday and Shiromani Akali Dal supremo Parkash Singh Badal in Chandigarh the following day, party leaders said on Tuesday. On June 3, Shah met LJP chief and Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan, who raised the issue of special status for Bihar. The series of meetings are being seen as an attempt by the BJP to reach out to allies who have either been criticising or expressing their dissent against the party and also to strengthen the National Democratic Alliance ahead of the Lok Sabha polls next year. “Amit Shah sought time to meet Uddhavji. Accordingly, an appointment for tomorrow evening has been given to him,” Sena MP Sanjay Raut told PTI in Mumbai. However, he questioned the need for Shah to meet Thackeray after a gap of four years. Shah, who will meet Thackeray at his Mumbai residence tomorrow, will travel to Chandigarh the day after that to call on Badal and his son, Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Badal, a BJP leader said. While the BJP president trav- NEW DELHI, 5 JUNE I would like to reiterate my position that I find the charges preposterous and baseless, the product of a malicious and vindictive campaign against myself. I will continue to vigorously contest these charges and maintain steadfast conviction that ultimately the truth will prevail through the judicial system that we are privileged to have in our country SC clears hurdles to reservation in promotions PRESS TRUST OF INDIA PRESS TRUST OF INDIA els to Mumbai and Chandigarh, he has also instructed that a “mahabhoj” (grand dinner) be held for all NDA allies on June 7 in the Bihar capital Patna. It will be attended by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi and Union ministers Paswan and Upendra Kushwaha. The BJP general secretary and the party's Bihar in-charge Bhupendra Yadav, state party BJP president Nityanand Rai and another NDA ally Arun Kumar will also attend the event, a party leader said. Invitations have been extended to all NDA MLAs, MLCs and MPs from Bihar for the dinner. The outreach programme is aimed at reinforcing the unity of NDA at a time the entire opposition is trying to come together to stitch an alliance for the 2019 elections. India to go ahead with S-400 deal with Russia NEW DELHI, 5 JUNE India has very clearly conveyed to the US that the “time-tested” Indo-Russian cooperation in the defence sector will continue, including the deal for S-400Triumf air defence missile systems for the IAF, notwithstanding the American sanctions against Moscow. Sources said India wants its defence transactions with Russia to be insulated from the purview of stringent American law CAATSA and is likely to raise the issue with the US when the two sides meet in Washington for the 2+2 talks next month. “In all our engagements with the US, we have clearly explained how India and Russia's defence cooperation has been going on for a long time and that it is a time-tested relationship. We have mentioned that CAATSA cannot impact the IndiaRussia defence cooperation,” defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman said. She said the defence the cooperation between India and Russia will continue. In January, the US announced sanctions against Russia under its Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) for Moscow's alleged meddling in the US presidential election. PTI announced the ceasefire in the troubled state. “We honour the ceasefire. We have been given room to hit back when there is unprovoked attack. The Defence ministry's role is not to assess whether ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir has been successful or not,” she said in response to another question. The government had announced suspension of operations against militants during Ramadan, which started from May 17. On the possibility of engaging Pakistan in dialogue, Sitharaman reiterated external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj's comments that talks and terror cannot go hand-in-hand. The LoC has been witnessing increasing hostilities in the last few months. A total of 908 incidents of ceasefire violations by Pakistan Army were reported till last week in the current year as against 860 incidents during 2017, defence sources in New Delhi said. PC quizzed by ED for 6 hrs; court extends protection from arrest STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 5 JUNE A Delhi court on Tuesday extended the protection from arrest granted to senior Congress leader and ex-Union minister P Chidambaram in the Aircel-Maxis money laundering case till 10 July. Special judge O P Saini passed this order after the Enforcement Directorate (ED) sought more time to file a detailed reply to Chidambaram's plea seeking anticipatory bail in the case. Chidambaram today also appeared for questioning before the ED here. He was qustioned in this case by the ED for the first time. His questioning reportedly continued for over six hours. The ED had issued a fresh summon to him yesterday to appear before it. The agency recorded his statement today under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). The ED had already questioned Chidambaram's son Karti in connection with this case. Chidambaram's role is alleged to have come under cloud in the Rs 3,500 crore Aircel-Maxis deal as during his stint as finance minister in the previous Congress-led UPA government, the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance was granted to this venture which allegedly involved irregularities and graft. After his questioning by the ED this evening, Chidambaram issued a statement dismissing the exercise, saying all the answers he gave to the agency were already recorded in government documents. He also pointed out that a probe has been initiated against him even though there was no FIR registered against him. "Appeared before the ED. The questions were about what is already recorded in the file. Hence, answers too were what is recorded in the file. More than half the time taken up by typing the answers without errors, reading the statement and signing it!" Chidambaram said. "Need to reiterate there is no FIR, no offence alleged, yet there is an investigation," he added. On 30 May, Chidambaram had moved the same trial court of special judge Saini, seeking relief from arrest by the ED in the Aircel-Maxis matter. The court had then directed the ED not to take any coercive action or arrest him till 5 June. It had also noted that Chidambaram has undertaken to comply with the ED's summons while saying he apprehended his arrest by the agency. In both the Aircel-Maxis deal and the Rs 305 crore INX Media case, the role of Chidamabaram's family members, including Karti, has come under the scanner of the CBI and the ED. Karti was also arrested by the CBI in the INX Media case on 28 February and released on bail on 23 March by the Delhi High Court. The trial court had also granted him protection from arrest in the Aircel-Maxis matter till 10 July. Chidambaram has rejected all allegations levelled by the investigative agencies against his family members as "baseless" and "driven by vendetta politics". Senior IAF officer killed in jet crash AHMEDABAD, 5 JUNE A very senior officer of the Indian Air Force (IAF) was killed this morning as the Jaguar fighter aircraft he was flying crashed at a village in Kutch district of Gujarat. Air Commodore Sanjai Chauhan is the seniormost IAF officer to have died in a flying accident so far. The Jaguar plane had taken off from Jamnagar Air Force base, of which Air Commodore Chauhan was the Commanding Officer, on a routine sortie and crashed in Barej village in Mundra taluka at around 10.30 a.m. About a dozen cattle grazing in the fields nearby were killed as the debris of the crashed aircraft flew all over the place. The debris of the aircraft were strewn all over, local sources said. Chauhan, commissioned in the fighter stream of the IAF in December 1989, was a Qualified Flying Instructor and Experimental Test Pilot with over 3,800 hours of service flying, officials said. Chauhan, who was awarded the Vayu Sena Medal, had held several important posts such as the Commanding Officer of the Test Pilots' School. He also commanded a fighter squadron of the IAF , an official said. “He was an ace fighter pilot with a vast flying experience and had flown 17 types of aircraft of the IAF including Jaguar, Mig-21, Hunter, HPT-32, Iskara, Kiran, Avro748, AN-32 and Boeing 737,” he said. Chauhan also had the unique experience of flying modern foreign fighter jets such as Rafale, Gripen and Euro Fighter as the leader of evaluation for the Medium Multi Role Combat Aircraft selection, the officials said. Defence spokesman Lt Col Manish Ojha said that a Court of Inquiry (CoI) has been ordered to investigate the SNS cause of the crash.
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