CMYK SATURDAY www.thestatesman.com 06 OCTOBER 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 P9 SENSEX 34,376.99 -792.17 WEATHER Mainly clear sky. Maximum and minimum temparature likely to be around 35 and 27 degrees Celsius respectively RAINFALL: NIL RELATIVE HUMIDITY P10 NIFTY 10,316.45 -282.80 Min. 44% Max: 35.4°C (+3) SUN SETS 17:20 hrs MOON RISES 02.21 hrs Min: 26.3°C (+1) SUN RISES 05:30 hrs MOON SETS 15:33 hrs ` vs $ 73.76 -18 PAISE GOLD 30,180.00 +170.00 New moon on 9 October THUMBNAILS Jumadil (C) who went missing for seven days following the earthquake and tsunami, was reunited with his family at a shelter in Palu in Indonesia on Friday. AFP Non-Gujaratis targeted: Non-Gujaratis, especiG ally those from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, were targeted in several parts of the state following the arrest of a Bihar native for allegedly raping a 14-month-old girl in Sabarkantha district last week, police said. DGP Shivanand Jha said such attacks have taken place in Mehsana, Gandhinagar, Sabarkantha, Patan and Ahmedabad districts in the last one week after the circulation of hate messages on social media. He said 170 people have been arrested. India poised for big win: Virat Kohli and Ravindra Jadeja ravaged a clueless West Indian attack with strokeful hundreds as India headed towards a demolishing win in the first cricket Test in Rajkot. The hosts piled up 649/9 in their first innings before reducing West Indies to 94 for six in 29 overs when stumps were drawn on day two. After Prithvi Shaw's phenomenal ton on debut on day one, skipper Kohli scored 139 and Jadeja 100 not out before P12 India declared their first innings at tea. ontrary to widespread expectations, the Reserve Bank of India's monetary policy committee maintained status quo on the interest rate front, keeping the repo rate steady at 6.50 per cent and CRR or cash reserve ratio at 4 per cent, but decided to change policy stance from “neutral” to“calibrated tightening”, considering the unsettled global and domestic environments. The biggest takeaway from the third bi-monthly statement on monetary policy was RBI Governor Urjit Patel's emphatic statement that the central bank would not intervene in the currency market to prop up the free-falling rupee. The Governor said the rupee-dollar rate would be determined by the market's demand and supply parity or mismatch. In short, the RBI is okay with the continuing depreciation of the rupee. Mr Patel said the RBI would not step in to salvage the currency as it considers that the rupee is comparatively better placed than other emerging markets' currencies in trade with the US dollar. The change in policy stance was opposed by Mr Ravindra Dholkia who wanted it to stay "neutral". Mr Patel, Mr Acharya, Mr Pami Dua, Mr Chertan Ghate and Mr Michael D Patra voted in favour of a change in policy stance. But the benign tone of the policy, analysts say, left money and equity markets confused since the ` falls below 74 against $ C NEW DELHI, 5 OCTOBER RBI Governor Urjit Patel at the bank’s head office in Mumbai on Friday. AFP government has categorically stated that increase in policy rate was off-the-table “and it is not necessary to review the rate at every bimonthly deliberations of MPC.” The Governor clarified that rate hike was not needed, considering that the CPI inflation appeared anchored at desired level. Regardless of rising crude oil prices and falling rupee, the RBI moderated its consumer price index-linked inflation projection for Q2 (July-September) to 3.7 per cent and 3.8-4.5 per cent in H2 of the current fiscal. The MPC also retained GDP growth forecast for current fiscal at 7.4 per cent and marginally cut it for Q1 of FY 201920 from 7.5 per cent to 7.4 per cent. The underlying assessment, analysts say, is that it is global factors that are likely to pose danger to domestic macros, rather than domestic developments. In the Governor's words, the outlook is clouded with several uncertainties. First, special measures by the government to ensure remunerative prices to farmers and their produces ~ its impact on food prices remains uncertain. Second, The rupee Friday crashed below the 74-level against the US dollar for the first time ever after the RBI kept its key policy rate unchanged. The currency was quoted 55 paise lower at 74.13 against the dollar soon after the Central bank announced its monetary policy. Investors remained concerned over sustained foreign capital outflows and fears of widening current account deficit in the wake of soaring crude oil prices. At the interbank foreign exchange market, the rupee opened higher at 73.56 a dollar against its previous record low closing of 73.58. But it failed to sustain the initial strength and fell back to breach the 74-mark before closing at 73.7650. The BSE Sensex fell 792.17 points to end at a near six-month low of 34,376.99, while the NSE Nifty dropped 282.80 poPTI ints to 10,316.45. oil prices are on the rise. As long as volatility in crude prices remains, upside risk to inflation will exist. Mr Patel also welcomed finance minister Arun Jaitley's assertion a day before that the government was committed to retain fiscal deficit at the set target of 3.3 per cent for the current fiscal. More reports on P8 Brushing aside the threat of American sanctions, India on Friday signed the much-anticipated S-400 long range surface-to-air missile defence system deal with Russia that is expected to bolster the defence preparedness of the country. Under the more than $5 billion deal, Russia will supply five regiments of the highly-sophisticated missiles to India. These missiles will provide India umbrella coverage against any air-borne threats like fighter jets, missiles and UAVs. Apart from the mega defence deal, the two countries inked as many as eight major agreements in areas like nuclear energy, railways, trade, transport education, human spaceflight programme and small and medium enterprises after the 19th India-Russia annual summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin. The bonhomie between the two leaders was very much in evidence as Modi welcomed the Russian leader with a bear hug before the two leaders went into a restricted meeting followed by delegation-level talks at the majestic Hyderabad House. As the two leaders addressed the media after the summit, there was confusion on whether the S-400 missile deal, seen as the showpiece of the IndiaRussia defence partnership, had been signed or not in view of the US threat of punitive action against Indian entities dealing with Calcutta HC’s interim stay on puja grant bid AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE KOLKATA, 5 OCTOBER OSLO, 5 OCTOBER Congolese doctor Denis Mukwege (left) and Yazidi campaigner Nadia Murad (right) won the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for their work in fighting sexual violence in conflicts around the world. The pair won the award “for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict,” Nobel committee chairwoman Berit Reiss-Andersen said in unveiling the winners in Oslo, an announcement which won international praise. One a doctor, the other a former Islamic State sex slave, both have come to represent the struggle against a global scourge which goes well beyond any single conflict, as the #MeToo movement has shown. The prize was announced as #MeToo marks its first anniversary after a year in which allegations of sexual abuse, rape and harassment have toppled dozens of powerful men. Mukwege, 63, was recognised for two decades of work to help women recover from the violence and trauma of sexual abuse and rape in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The committee also hon- oured Murad, a 25-year-old Iraqi woman who, kidnapped by Islamic State militants, endured three months as a sex slave before escaping. The committee said she had shown “uncommon courage” in recounting her own sufferings, saying she had “refused to accept the social codes that require women to remain silent and ashamed of the abuses to which they have been subjected.” Details on Page 10 A Division Bench of Calcutta High Court today directed the state government to put on hold till 9 October the distribution of funds among puja committees for organising Durga Puja. The bench of acting Chief Justice Debasis Kar Gupta and Justice Sampa Sarkar asked the state government if there were any guidelines, since a huge amount of money was involved. On 10 September chief minister Mamata Banerjee had declared that Rs 10,000 each would be given to 28,000 puja committees across the state, including 3,000 in the city, costing the government an amount of Rs 28 crore. Pointing out that it was the taxpayers’ money that was sought to be given away, the court asked who would decide whether the funds could be spent without guidelines. Appearing for the petitioner, Bikas Ranjan Bhattacharya submitted such distribution of money among puja committees was “unconstitutional” as it wasn’t admissible on religious grounds. Advocate general Kishor Dutta submitted that the fund was for the purpose of the state government's 'Safe Drive Save Life' campaign which had been mentioned in a state government notification and claimed that the PIL as such was not maintainable. Mr Bhattacharya maintained the petition had been filed before the notification. “A story is now sought to be made out,” he submitted. Top leaders to attend Jan meet: Didi STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE KOLKATA, 5 OCTOBER Trinamul Congress leader and state chief minister Mamata Banerjee today said many like-minded and prominent leaders from across the country have evinced interest in participating in her 'Federal Front' rally at the Brigade Parade Grounds on 19 January next year to oust the Bharatiya Janata Party from the Centre. Leaders such as Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister and National Conference leader Omar Abdullah have already confirmed that they would join the 19 January rally in Kolkata, Miss Banerjee said. All opposition parties that ideologically oppose the BJP including the Left parties~ CPI-M, Forward Bloc, RSP and CPI ~ will be invited, the chief minister said. Miss Banerjee asked the people to defeat the BJP in the coming Lok Sabha elections. “We will appeal to the people to ensure that the BJP does not get a single seat out of the 42 Parliamentary seats in the state. The Centre should remember that the Trinamul Congress cannot be cowed down by the central agencies.” She also cautioned the state administration against those who may try to instigate communal violence during Durga Puja. Lakhs of people including foreign tourists come to the city during the Pujas. “BJP can flare up communal violence. It’s their culture but we have to be careful and through you (the media) I appeal to the people not to get provoked.” Miss Banerjee said, BJP, RSS and Bajrang Dal are fanning communal violence in the state. She alleged that last year it was the Centre who fanned violence in the Hills but “we were able to restore peace there. We have noticed that the Centre is bypassing the state government and is supporting secessionist forces.” Referring to the Nagerbazar blast, she said,"I'm not considering it lightly. It is unfortunate that an eight year old child was killed. The CID is investigating the case.” Will be PM if allies want: Rahul PRESS TRUST OF INDIA NEW DELHI, 5 OCTOBER Congress president Rahul Gandhi Friday said he will become Prime Minister if allies want him but the first step is for all parties to get together and defeat the ruling BJP. It’s a two-stage process and a decision on who will be Prime Minister comes second, Gandhi said. “We have had discussions with allies and what we decided is that this is a two stage process stage, one is to get together and defeat BJP and stage two is, once the election is over then we will SILVER 38,700.00 +100.00 BRENT CRUDE (IN $) 84.81 +0.17 STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 5 OCTOBER Peace Prize honours champions of fight against sexual violence STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE P11 Ignoring US threat, India inks mega missile deal with Russia RBI keeps key rates steady STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE MUMBAI, 5 OCTOBER DI MARIA, A MAN OF MANY PARTS P10 Rupee still better placed than peers, says Urjit Patel Max.89% TEMPERATURE INTERPOL CHIEF ‘MISSING’ ON CHINA TRIP KAVANAUGH CLEARS KEY SENATE HURDLE SHAHBAZ SHARIF ARRESTED BY PAK ANTI-GRAFT BODY decide what happens,” the Congress president said. The Congress chief, who was speaking at the HT Leadership Summit, answered questions on a range of issues, including his temple visits and the RSS. Gandhi said he has been going to temples, gurdwaras and mosques for years, but the issue of his visits to temples has suddenly been publicised. “I guess BJP doesn’t like it. It infuriates them. BJP feels only they can go to temples, he said. He said he can understand criticism and is not disturbed by it. “My response is to listen.” CMYK Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and his Indian counterpart Sushma Swaraj exchange signed agreements at Hyderabad House in New Delhi on Friday. AFP ‘CAATSA not meant to hurt allies’ NEW DELHI, 5 OCTOBER The United States on Friday clarified that the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) was not intended to impose damage to the military capabilities of Washington’s allies or partners. This clarification from Russia under the Countering of America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA). Neither Modi nor Putin mentioned the deal in their statements to the media. The deal was also not inked at the agreement-signing ceremony in the presence of the two leaders as is the practice. Sources later said the deal was signed just before Modi and Putin went into their summit-level talks. The deal, they added, was in national interest and negotiations on it “precede the US embassy in New Delhi came within hours of India announcing that it had signed the Triumf missile defence systems deal with Russia, which could attract sanctions against Indian entities under CAATSA. India last year was officially designated by the USA as its ‘major defence partner’. SNS CAATSA by a long period”. Sources, however, declined to discuss whether India would buy the missiles under the rupee-rouble arrangement or in dollars. A joint statement issued at the end of the summit said the two sides welcomed the conclusion of the contract for the supply of S-400 Triumf missiles to India. Observers say that by signing the deal, India had reasserted its ‘strategic autonomy’ in the matter of defence purchases. The Russian missile system is said to be the best in the world. India has been negotiating the missile deal with Russia for three years now. America’s threat of sanctions, however, did impact the progress of negotiations between India and Russia. That India would not abandon Russia for the sake of strengthening ties with the USA was quite clear from PM Modi’s statement to the media. “India gives top priority to its ties with Russia and the special and privileged partnership between our two countries has received a new energy and direction from the important decisions we have taken today,’’ he said. Putin, on his part, said the two countries had decided to take their twoway investment to $30 billion by 2025. Russia reiterated its ‘unwavering support’ to India's permanent membership in an expanded UN Security Council as well as its membership of the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group (NSG).
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