SATURDAY www.thestatesman.com 27 OCTOBER 2018 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 16+4 |` 5|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR WHERE’S KHASHOGGI’S BODY, TURKEY ASKS ‘ALL DOORS CLOSED TO NGOS’ MODI HAS ERODED VOTERS’ FAITH: MANMOHAN P7 SENSEX 33,349.31 -340.78 WEATHER Partly cloudy sky. Mist in the morning. The maximum and minimum temperatures would be around 31 and 16 degrees Celsius respectively. RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max. 94% TEMPERATURE Max: 30.4°C (-1) SUN RISES 06:30 hrs MOON RISES 19:56 hrs P9 NIFTY 10,030.00 -94.90 Min: 15.8°C (-1) SUN SETS 17:41 hrs MOON SETS 09:53 hrs THUMBNAILS A Palestinian woman protester runs with a Palestinian flag during clashes following a demonstration near the border with Israel AFP east of Gaza City on Friday. P12 GOLD 30,770.00 +125.00 STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE A mid the unprecedented crisis gripping the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the Supreme Court today set a two-week deadline for the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) to complete its enquiry against the benched CBI director Alok Verma, appointing a former judge of the court to monitor the probe. Verma had moved the apex court to challenge the Narendra Modi government's order stripping him of his charge and sending him on compulsory leave. The direction by the top court that was welcomed by both the government and the opposition Congress came amid nationwide protests outside CBI offices by Congress leaders led by party chief Rahul Gandhi against the order of the government to strip Verma of his powers and sending him on leave. The Congress demanded the “reinstatement” of Verma. Gandhi courted arrest after leading a protest of party workers outside the CBI headquarters in the national capital and was taken to nearby Lodhi Colony police station where he was detained for 30 minutes along with other party leaders before they were let off. Finance minister Arun Jaitley, meanwhile, said the apex court order was a “positive development.” A Bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi also clipped the wings of M Nageshwar Rao, who has been given the interim charge of looking after the CBI director's duties by the government, by barring him from taking any policy or major decision. During the intervening night of 23-24 October, the Modi government divested the feuding CBI director Verma and special director Rakesh Asthana The Supreme Court also barred M Nageshwar Rao, who has been given interim charge of the duties of CBI director, from taking any policy or ‘major’ decision of their charge and sent them on leave amidst trading of corruption charges. The government had then also appointed Rao, CBI joint director, as the agency's interim chief. The Chief Justice-headed Bench, also comprising Justice S K Kaul and Justice K M Joseph, ordered that the CVC's probe into the allegations made in the 24 August note/letter of the Cabinet Secretary to the CVC with regard to Verma would be supervised by Justice A K Patnaik. The Bench however also said, "We make it clear that entrustment of supervision of on-going enquiry by the CVC to a former judge of this court is one-time exception which has been felt necessary by this court in the peculiar facts of this case and should not be understood to be casting any reflection on any authority of the Government of India." The court said that Rao would now only perform routine tasks of the agency. “Rao who has been entrusted with the task of BRENT CRUDE (IN $) 76.57 -0.32 looking after the duties of the Director of the CBI by the impugned order dated October 23, 2018 of the Secretary, Department of Personnel & Training, shall, as of from now, not take any policy decision(s) or any major decision(s) and will only perform the routine tasks that are essential to keep the CBI functional,” the Bench said. It also ruled that a list of all the decisions taken by Rao between “October 23, 2018 and up to this hour including decisions with regard to transfer of investigations, change of investigating offi- cer(s) etc will be furnished to the court in a sealed cover on or before November 12, 2018 whereafter orders as would be appropriate will be passed by the court”. Shortly after taking charge on Tuesday night, Rao went on to effect transfers of 13 officers, especially "purging" those considered to be in theVerma camp and probing Asthana. The court asked for replies from the Centre and CVC on Verma's petition, who has also sought a stay on the Centre's order giving interim charge of his post to Rao. The Bench also dealt with a separate plea filed by an NGO, Common Cause, which has sought a probe by a Special Investigation Team (SIT) against CBI officers, including Asthana, facing corruption allegations. It issued notices to the Centre, CBI, CVC, Asthana, Verma and Rao asking them to respond to this plea by PRESS TRUST OF INDIA NEW DELHI, 26 OCTOBER Congress president Rahul Gandhi, along with several Opposition leaders, leads a protest by his party workers outside the CBI headquarters in New Delhi on Friday against the Narendra Modi government's bid to strip CBI director Alok (P5) Verma of his charge. RITIK JAIN Def ministry tweet on misuse of privileges sparks outrage PRESS TRUST OF INDIA NEW DELHI, 26 OCTOBER itary) gaadis (vehicles)? Not to forget Madam's shopping expedition on government vehicles. And endless parties...who pays for that?”. Later, Rajashekar, an official from the Defence Accounts Service, deleted the tweet. Her response to 72-yearold Admiral Prakash, a war hero who was chief of Navy Staff between July 2004 and October 2006, drew sharp reactions from military veterans. Some of them said the principal spokesperson's comments reflected the approach of the bureaucracy towards the armed forces. In a tweet, retired Major General Harsha Kakar told defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman that the spokesperson's comments mirrored the true attitude of the ministry towards the three services. “Is this inadvertent. It shows the true colours of your MoD Madam. You are meant to protect the military, not insult it. Keeping this spokesperson is an insult to India, its armed forces and their sacrifices. It shows no respect for senior veterans. Your spokesperson is a disaster,” he said. Retired Air Vice Marshal Manmohan Bahadur called the tweet by Rajashekar as“shameful”. BJP MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar also took strong exception to the spokesperson's comments and demanded an inquiry into the matter. “Dear @DefenceMinIndia @DrSubhashMoS - who is this 'Defence spokesperson' who reprsnts MoD ie govt n talks like this. This is unacceptable conduct n I wud rqst an enquiry into this. This is unconscionable, disrespectful n arrogance tht behooves a response. @PMOIndia (sic)” he tweeted. Amid angry reactions by veterans, Admiral Prakash said there should be sober reflection on state of civil military relationship. “Rather than getting excited over indiscreet tweet of @SpokespersonMoD I would suggest sober reflection; (a) by MoD on state of civil-mil relations & (b) by Military Leadership on the aspersions cast by MoD (IDAS?) civil-servant on personal conduct of Service officers,” he said. 12 November. The court observed that it did not want the CBI matter before it to linger, saying it would not be in the interest of the country. Attorney General K K Venugopal appeared for the Centre in the court. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the CVC, urged the court that it could consider for the time being that the matter is probed by the CVC only. Senior advocate Fali S Nariman, appearing for Verma, said that the CBI director was appointed for a two-year tenure with the approval of a Selection Committee comprising the Prime Minister, the Leader of Opposition, and the Chief Justice of India. "The question is whether the tenure could be breached at any time?" Nariman asked, referring to the top court's 1997 Vineet Narain judgment and the Delhi Special Police Establishment (DSPE) Amendment Act. BJP, JD-U to contest equal number of LS seats in Bihar TAKING TO THE STREETS Arrest in US bomb probe: US authorities on Friday announced that a suspect had been arrested in connection with 12 suspicious packages and pipe bombs sent to critics of Donald Trump in a days-long spree that has inflamed the United States ahead of key midterm elections. US media said the suspect was taken into custody in Florida, where a huge nationwide manhunt had reportedly P12 concentrated in recent hours. The Defence Ministry was Friday left red faced after its spokesperson “inadvertently” posted a tweet, criticising misuse of privileges by military officials, while responding to a comment by former Navy Chief Admiral (retd) Arun Prakash. As the tweet by principal spokesperson Swaranashree Rao Rajashekar drew angry reactions from military veterans, she deleted it saying, “The tweet was inadvertently done and the same is deeply regretted please.” Earlier, Admiral Prakash retweeted a photograph (inset) showing a military flag on the bonnet of an official car of the Internal Financial Adviser to the Western Command of the Army. “Even if misuse of an Army Command's insignia by a civilian is not a cognizable offence, the person needs to be reprimanded by the GOC in C whose 'Financial Adviser' he is,” Prakash tweeted. Responding to the former Navy chief's comments, Rajashekar tweeted, “What about misuse of jawans in your residence during an officer's tenure sir? And how about children being picked up and dropped to school in Fauji (mil- SILVER 38,650.00 -100.00 Supreme Court names former judge AK Patnaik to supervise the inquiry; Rahul Gandhi leads nationwide protests, courts arrest Activists taken into custody after rejection of bail pleas: Left-wing activists Arun Ferreira and Vernon Gonsalves, accused of having Maoist links, were taken into custody by Pune police Friday, hours after their bail pleas were rejected by a Pune court. District and Sessions Judge (Special Judge) K D Vadane rejected the bail applications of Ferreira and Gonsalves P5 along with that of Sudha Bharadwaj. Aadhaar bar: The government on Friday ordered telecom companies to stop using Aadhaar for electronic verification of existing mobile phone customers as well as for issuing new connections to comply with a recent Supreme Court order. The court had last month restricted the use of Aadhaar by private entities in the absence of a legal provision. P16 CVC given 2 weeks for probe against CBI chief NEW DELHI, 26 OCTOBER Min. 38% ` vs $ 73.47 -20 PAISE CARIBBEANS ARE UP AGAINST KOHLI IN BATTLE OF PUNE BJP president Amit Shah announced Friday that his party and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar-led JD(U) will contest equal number of Lok Sabha seats in the state, in what is being seen as a big boost to Kumar who had been insisting on a parity with the saffron party. Joined by Kumar, Shah told reporters that an announcement on the number of seats both parties, besides two other allies ~ Ram Vilas Paswan's LJP and Upendra Kushwaha's RLSP ~ will contest in 2019, will be announced in twothree days. The announcement followed a meeting Kumar had with Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the latter's residence earlier in the day. It marks a climbdown by the Bharatiya Janata Party, which had contested 30 of the state's 40 seats in the 2014 general elections and won 22, while its two other then allies, LJP and RLSP , had won six and two seats respectively out of seven and three they had fought. Sources in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), which includes the BJP and its partners, said the BJP and the JD-U may contest 16 seats each, with six and two to be left for parties led by Paswan and Kushwaha respectively. Shah made it clear that the number of seats of all NDA parties in Bihar will come down to accommodate the Janata Dal (United), which had joined the alliance last year after severing ties with the Congress and the Lalu Prasad-led Rashtriya Janata Dal. The JD-U had fought the 2014 Lok Sabha polls on its own. To a question about whether Kushwaha, whose equation with Kumar is far from cordial, will remain a part of the NDA, Shah answered in the affirmative. “All four parties will remain part of the NDA,” he said. The JD(U) had won only two seats in 2014, and the BJP's decision to cede many of its winning seats to give it an equal weightage underscores Kumar's indispensability to it against the RJDled opposition. Saeed-led JuD no longer on Pakistan’s list of banned outfits Rajapaksa sworn in as Lankan PM after Prez sacks incumbent Soldier dead in stone-pelting in Anantnag PTI JAMMU, 26 OCTOBER ISLAMABAD, 26 OCTOBER COLOMBO, 26 OCTOBER Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed-led Jamaat-udDawa (JuD) and Falah-iInsaniyat Foundation (FIF) are no longer on the list of banned outfits in Pakistan as the ordinance that proscribed them has lapsed and the new Imran Khan-led government did not extend it, a media report said. In February this year, former president Mamnoon Hussain promulgated an ordinance amending the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 to declare JuD and FIF as proscribed groups. During a hearing onThursday of a petition filed by Saeed, his counsel informed Islamabad High Court that the presidential ordinance had lapsed and it had never been extended, Dawn newspaper reported. The petitioner had challenged the ordinance under which his organisations had been banned for being on the watch list of the United Nations Security Council. Saeed contended in the petition that he established JuD in 2002 and cut off all ties with the banned Lashkar-i-Taiyyaba, but India continued to malign the JuD for its past association with the banned outfit, the report said. PTI Controversial Sri Lankan strongman Mahinda Rajapaksa staged a dramatic political comeback on Friday, becoming the new Prime Minister after President Maithripala Sirisena sacked premier RanilWickremesinghe who termed the move as “unconstitutional” and vowed to prove his majority in Parliament. The sudden development came amid growing tensions between Sirisena and Wickremesinghe on several policy matters and the President has been critical of the Prime Minister and his policies, especially on economy and security. Rajapaksa, 72, tweeted a photo of him and Sirisena after the swearing in ceremony at the Presidential Secretariat here. “Former #SriLanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa sworn in as new Prime Minister,” he said in the tweet. After Rajapaksa took oath, Sirisena wrote to Wickremesinghe, saying he had been removed. “I had appointed you as the prime minister under (article) 42 (1) of the Constitution and as your appointing authority, I write to notice that you have been removed from the post of prime minister,” Sirisena said in the letter. Reacting sharply to his sack- SEE PAGE 13 ing,Wickremesinghe asserted that the swearing-in of Rajapaksa in his place is “illegal and unconstitutional” and he will prove his majority in Parliament. The United National Party (UNP) leader vowed to carry on as PM despite being removed by Sirisena. “I will continue to be the Prime Minister. Mahinda Rajapaksa's appointment is unconstitutional,” Wickremesinghe said. “The country is not in a crisis, I am the PM,” he told reporters, adding that he will continue to be the PM till he enjoys the majority in Parliament. “Only I have the majority. The only way that can be changed is through a no-confidence motion or if I resign,” Wickremesinghe said referring to the 19th amendment to the Constitution. In April, he successfully defeated a no-trust motion in Parliament engineered by Sirisena with backing from Rajapaksa. The political developments unfolded after Sirisena's broader political front United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) announced that it has decided to quit the current unity government with Wickremesinghe's UNP . Mahinda Amaraweera, agriculture minister and UPFA general secretary, told reporters that the UPFA decision has been conveyed to Parliament Speaker Karu Jayasuriya. The unity government was formed in 2015 when Sirisena was elected President with Wickremesinghe's support, ending a nearly decade-long rule by Rajapaksa. Rajapaksa's return to power ends a more than three-year-old coalition government that was formed by Sirisena andWickremesinghe on a promise to combat corruption and financial irregularities. Sirisena, who was Rajapaksa's minister of health, broke away from him to contest the presidential elections. An Army soldier died of wounds sustained in stoning by miscreants in the Anantnag area in South Kashmir, an Army spokesman said on Friday. Rajendra Singh, a 22-year-old sepoy, was part of a Quick Reaction Team which was providing protection to a Border Roads Organisation convoy yesterday. At around 6 p.m. when the convoy was passing through the Anantnag bypass tri-junction near National Highway-44, a few youth hurled stones at the vehicle and Singh was injured after being hit by a stone directly on the head. He was evacuated to the Srinagar-based 92 Base Hospital but succumbed. Another soldier, Lance Naik Brajesh Kumar, was killed in an encounter today in Sopore while sepoy Ngamsiamliana died in a sniper attack on an Army camp in Tral last night. Army spokesman, Colonel Rajesh Kalia said that two terrorists were today killed in the joint operation by Army, CRPF and J&K Police at Malgunipura in Sopore. Four terrorists were eliminated yesterday in an encounter at Arwani in Anantnag.Two more terrorists were shot dead in an encounter at Kreeri in Baramulla. SNS
The Statesman is one of India's oldest English newspapers. It was founded in Kolkata in 1875 and is directly descended from The Friend of India (founded 1818). The Englishman (founded 1821) was merged with The Statesman in 1934. The Delhi edition of The Statesman began publication in 1931. The Statesman Weekly is a compendium of news and views from the Kolkata and Delhi editions. Printed on airmail paper, it is popular with readers outside India. The Statesman (average weekday circulation approximately 180,000) is a leading English newspaper in West Bengal. The Sunday Statesman has a circulation of 230,000.