WEDNESDAY www.thestatesman.com 06 MARCH 2019 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 36,442.54 +378.73 WEATHER Moderate fog in the morning and clear sky thereafter. The maximum and minimum temperatures would be around 24 and 10 degrees Celsius respectively. RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max.93% Max: 22.8°C (-4) SUN RISES 06:40 hrs MOON RISES 07:13 hrs P9 NIFTY 10,987.45 +123.95 Min: 12°C (-1) SUN SETS 18:24 hrs MOON SETS 18:10 hrs ` vs $ 70.49 -43 PAISE GOLD 31,005.00 -315.00 Azhar’s son, brother among 44 held in Pak ISLAMABAD, 5 MARCH J THUMBNAILS India take series lead: Indian bowlers delivered in a heart-stopping climax to fashion a narrow eight-run victory against Australia in the second ODI after skipper Virat Kohli conjured up a resolute hundred in testing conditions, in Nagpur on Tuesday. Pacer Vijay Shankar scalped the last two Australian batsmen in the final over in which Australia needed to score 11 P15 runs for a series-levelling win. SC to hear fresh plea on forest dwellers: The Supreme Court on Tuesday said it would consider listing of a fresh plea seeking direction to the authorities not to evict any forest dweller and to set up an SIT to look into illegal acquisition of tribals' land. A bench headed by CJI took cognizance of the plea to not allot possession of any forest land belonging to tribals to anyone other than 'Adivasis' residing in that particular area. British police probes suspicious packages: Suspicious packages were found Tuesday near London's major transport hubs of Heathrow Airport, Waterloo Station and London City Airport, prompting Britain's counter-terrorism police to launch an investigation. The packages have been assessed by specialist officers to be small improvised explosive devices. Congress rules out alliance with AAP STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 5 MARCH Dealing a blow to the Opposition parties' bid to forge a grand alliance to take on Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led BJP in the general elections, the principal Opposition Congress party today officially declared that it will not have a tie-up with the Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP for the Lok Sabha polls in Delhi. Making the announcement after a two-hour-long meeting of Delhi Congress leaders with party president Rahul Gandhi at his residence here, the party's state unit chief and former chief minister Sheila Dikshit said, "We have unanimously decided that we will not have an alliance with the Aam Aadmi Party and that we will contest alone and will emerge SEE P 2 stronger.” LAHORE, 5 MARCH Pakistan's Punjab province government on Tuesday sacked its Information and Culture Minister Fayyazul Hassan Chohan over his antiHindu remarks that invited intense criticism from senior party leaders and the minority communiIndia following a suicide attack in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama district on February 14 by Pakistan-based Jaish-eMohammed terror group that killed 40 CRPF soldiers. India last week handed over the dossier Pak team to visit India on 14 March over Kartarpur AGENCIES ISLAMABAD, 5 MARCH Pakistan on Tuesday informed India that its delegation will visit New Delhi on March 14 to discuss a draft agreement on the Kartarpur corridor, a positive development that could help ease tensions between the two neighbours. Foreign Office spokesman Mohammad Faisal, who is also the Director General South Asia & SAARC, invited India's acting High Commissioner Gaurav Ahluwalia at the ministry of foreign affairs to convey the decision, according to a statement. “The Pakistan delegation will visit New Delhi on 14 March 2019, followed by the return visit of the Indian delegation to Islamabad on 28 March 2019, to discuss the draft Agreement on Kartarpur Corridor,” the statement said. Faisal informed the Indian envoy that Pakistan's High Commissioner to India, Sohail Mahmood, will be returning to New Delhi after the completion of consultations in Islamabad. He also conveyed that Pakistan was committed to continue weekly contact at the Military Operations Directorates level. The positive development came as Pakistan launched a crackdown against banned outfits. Pak places JuD,FIF in banned list: Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed-led Jamaatud-Dawa and its wing Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation were formally placed in the list of banned organisations on Tuesday, a day after Indian media reported that the two outfits continue to be only on the watchlist. According to Pakistan's National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) list, which was updated on Tuesday, JuD and FIF were among 70 organisations proscribed by the Ministry of Interior under the Anti-Terrorism Act 1997. ty. PM Imran Khan took serious notice of Chohan's 'anti-Hindu' remarks and directed Punjab CMUsman Buzdar to remove him forthwith, party sources said. A tweet said: “Bashing someone's faith should not be a part of any narAGENCIES rative.’’ to Pakistan to take action against the JeM, as pressure mounted on Islamabad to take action against individual and organisation listed by the UN Security Council as terrorists. Ban reinstated: Pak- SILVER 38,350.00 -450.00 BRENT CRUDE (IN $) 65.88 +0.21 SNS & PTI NEW DELHI, 5 MARCH NEW DELHI, 5 MARCH Remarks: Pak minister sacked P15 ‘Pakistan’s claims on Indian submarine false propaganda’ Pak to send envoy back to India DAWN/ANN & PTI aish-eMohammed chief Masood Azhar's son and brother were among 44 members of the banned militant outfits arrested by authorities in Pakistan on Tuesday, amid mounting pressure from the global community on Islamabad to rein in the terror groups operating on its soil. “We have taken 44 people in custody as part of crackdown on militant groups,” Minister of State for Interior Shehryar Khan Afridi said at a press conference here. Ministry of Interior Secretary Azam Suleman Khan said Hammad Azhar and Mufti Abdur Rauf were among those arrested on Tuesday. Hammad is the son of Masood Azhar while Rauf is his brother. Khan said a dossier shared by India with Pakistan last week also contained names of Rauf and Hammad. “It does not mean that action is being taken against only those individuals who are mentioned in the dossier,” he added. The crackdown came amid tensions with UP AGAINST A FRESH CHALLENGE P12 ‘Duo’s names feature in dossier shared by India with Pakistan last week’ Min. 50% TEMPERATURE HILLARY RULES OUT REMATCH WITH TRUMP IN 2020 HOW MODI SHOULD READ IMRAN KHAN PEOPLE HAVE RIGHT TO KNOW CASUALTIES IN IAF STRIKE: SENA In a pointer to Islamabad’s desire to deescalate the tension with India, Pakistan has decided to send its High Commissioner Sohail Mahmood back to New Delhi and resume his work. This was conveyed on Tuesday evening to the Indian Deputy High Commissioner in Pakistan when he was called to the Foreign Office in Islamabad by a senior Pakistan official. Pakistan had called its envoy back to Islamabad for urgent consultations in the wake of the Pulwama attack. Islamabad had taken the step after India called back its envoy Ajay Bisaria to New Delhi. Pakistan announced that its delegation would visit New Delhi SNS on 14 March. istan's Supreme Court reinstated a ban on the airing of Indian content on local television channels. The Indian Navy on Tuesday dismissed as “false propaganda” Pakistan's claim that it had thwarted an attempt by an Indian submarine to enter the country's territorial waters. In a statement, the Pakistan Navy claimed in Islamabad that it used specialised skills to ward off the Indian submarine from entering Pakistani waters. “We have witnessed Pakistan indulging in false propaganda and spread of misinformation. The Indian Navy does not take cognizance of such propaganda. Our deployments remain undeterred,” the Indian Navy said. In a brief statement, it said the Indian Navy remains deployed as necessary to protect national maritime interests. The claim by Pakistan Navy came in the midst of latest flare-up between the two nuclear-armed neighbours. “The Pakistan Navy used its specialised skills to ward off the submarine, successfully keeping it from entering Pa k i s t a n i waters,” a spokesperson of Pakistan Navy said. “The Indian submarine was not targeted keeping in view Pakistan's policy of peace,” the official said, adding that India must learn from this incident and “move towards peace”. “The Pakistan Navy is always ready to guard its territorial waters and is capable of responding to any kind of aggression with full force,” he said. Weeks after the Pulwama attack, Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba on Tuesday warned that there are reports about terrorists being trained to carry out operations through the sea. Addressing a gathering of global experts at the IndoPacific Regional Dialogue here, Lanba said the Pulwama attack was perpetrated by extremists that were “aided by a State” that seeks to destabilise India. “We also have reports of terrorists being trained to carry out operations in various modus operandi, including through the medium of the sea,” he said. The 26/11 attack was carried out by 10 seaborne terrorists of the Lashkar-e-Taiba, who All options open if there is another terror attack from Pakistan: India STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 5 MARCH In a stern warning to Pakistan, India has made it clear that "all options will be on the table" in the event of another terrorist attack in the country. Sources said the strike by the Indian Air Force (IAF) on the biggest terror camp of Jaish-eMohammed (JeM) at Balakot in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakthunkhwa province last week was meant to demonstrate the will and capacity of India to act against cross-border terrorism. Emphasising that India would not be deterred in its fight against terrorism, they asserted that no country had offered mediation between India and Pakistan following last week’s heightened tensions between the two countries. Major global powers had been firmly told by India that this was not an India-Pakistan issue but the issue of terrorism which India was determined to combat. Sources maintained that there was no question of holding any dialogue with Pakistan. India would continue to insist that Pakistan take verifiable and demonstrable action and dismantle the terrorist infrastructure on its soil. Sources said India had handed over to the US the evidence of Pakistan using F-16 fighter planes in last week’s aerial combat with India. New Delhi was confident that Washington would look into the use of these fighter jets against India. India would now focus on stepping up diplomatic pressure on Pakistan and added that New Delhi was reaching out to all UN Security Council members, urging them to designate JeM chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist ~ a proposal vetoed at least thrice by Pakistan’s "all-weather friend" China. Sources said recent interviews given by Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi clearly suggested that the Pakistan government was in touch with the JeM chief. This had strengthened India’s case for banning Azhar, a move that would cripple the activities of his terror network. Last week, Pakistan had admitted that Azhar was in Pakistan. Azhar was "unwell", so much that he "can't even leave his house", Qureshi had told CNN in an interview. Sources said India took reports from Pakistan on Azhar being unwell with a "pinch of salt". They recalled that such reports had also appeared in the Pakistani media about terrorists like Osama bin Laden and Mullah Omar. India, sources said, was determined to see that the JeM chief was brought to justice. On last week’s meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Abu Dhabi at which External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj was the "guest of honour", sources said all member countries of the grouping attended the meeting, barring Pakistan. So, it was Pakistan which was isolated in what it always considered its own backyard. Of 'non-military action', ‘mobile phones’ and ‘ashanka’... m SNS & PTI CHENNAI, 5 MARCH Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said Tuesday the Indian Air Force strike that destroyed a Jaish-e-Mohammad terror camp in Pakistan's Balakot area was “not a military action” as there was no civilian casualty. She also said Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale had not given any casualty figure in his media briefing after the air strike and only gave a statement which is the government's “position”. Gokhale has said the nonmilitary and preemptive strike on the Jaish-e-Mohammed training camp killed a “very large number” of terrorists, trainers and senior commanders. Sitharaman's remarks come amid some Opposition leader demanding evidence about the number of terrorists killed in the air strike. The IAF, which carried out the strike on February 26, said on Monday that government would provide details on the casualty figures as the Air Force only sees if a target has been hit or not. On Tuesday, the defence minister said, “There was no need to analyse more on Balakot strike” as she declined to link the air strike on terror camp with the coming Lok Sabha election. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh Tuesday said the government does not have the number of Jaish-eMohammed terrorists killed in the IAF strike in Pakistan's Balakot and attacked those questioning its veracity, insisting people who do that are indulging in politics over the valour of the armed forces. He said the number of fatalities at the JeM terror training camp will be known some day. Singh, however, claimed that the National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO) has informed the security establishment about the presence of around 300 “active” mobile phones at the training camp site before the IAF bombing. Charging the opposition with doing politics over the “valour and sacrifice” of defence personnel, the minister advised the Congress, which been demanding proof of the retaliatory assault and casualties in the aftermath of the Pulwama suicide bombing that left 40 CRPF men dead, to go to Pakistan and count the bodies if they indeed wanted to ascertain the number of fatalities. “Some leaders of other political parties are asking us questions about how many terrorists were killed in the IAF strike. Some day, it will be known that how many were killed. Leaders in Pakistan know in their hearts how many perished in the IAF attack,” Singh told a public gathering after inaugurating an electronic border guarding project of the BSF on the Indo-Bangladesh border here. He mocked the opposition over its demand for the number of fatalities, wondering why its leaders were asking “kitne mare, kitne mare?” (how many were killed?)” “Should our Air Force personnel count the bodies after the attack -- 1, 2, 3, 4, 5...? What is this joke,” he asked. The home minister referred to Indian Air Force chief B S Dhanoa's media interaction on Monday where he said the force does not count bodies and is concerned only about whether the target was hit. Sidestepping a raging debate on the number of casualties in the Balakot strike, Dhanoa had said it was for the government to provide details of the terrorists. Singh noted that the NTRO, the technical surveillance organisation of the government, had said that 300 mobile phones were active at the scene of Balakot bombing before the IAF action. Union minister V K Singh said Tuesday BJP president Amit Shah's “more than 250” casualty figure after the air strike on a Jaish camp in Pakistan was based on his “ashanka” (suspicion) on the basis of intelligence gathered about people in the buildings hit by the IAF. “Whenever such attacks take place, no witness is present on the ground. He cannot be present on the ground. You make an estimate on your intelligence gathering, which you have done earlier,” the MoS for External Affairs said. hijacked an Indian fishing trawler to reach Mumbai and unleash mayhem. The Navy chief said this part of the world had witnessed multiple forms of terrorism in recent years and few countries in the region had been spared. The global nature that terrorism has acquired in the recent times has further enhanced the scope of this threat, Lanba said. India, however, faces a “far more serious” version of “state-sponsored” terrorism, he said. “We recently saw the horr ific scale of the e x t re m i s t a t t a c k i n Jammu and Kashmir about three weeks ago. This violence was perpetrated by extremists aided and abetted by a State that seeks to destabilise India,” the Navy chief said without naming Pakistan. On February 14, a suicide bomber of the Paki s t a n - b a s e d Ja i s h - e Mo h a m m e d ( Je M ) rammed an explosiveladen vehicle into a bus in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama district, killing 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel. “We have seen how quickly terror groups evolve across the globe. A particular brand of terror can well become a global problem in near future,” Lanba warned. Trump plans to scrap India’s preferential trade status WASHINGTON/NEW DELHI, 5 MARCH President Donald Trump has announced plans to scrap the preferential trade treatment for India, claiming that New Delhi has failed to assure the US of “equitable and reasonable” access to its markets, a move India said will not have a“significant impact” on its exports to America. The move to end the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) for India andTurkey is the latest push by the Trump administration to redress what it considers to be unfair trading relationships with other countries like China. Trump has pledged to reduce US trade deficits, and has repeatedly called out India for high tariffs. On Monday, President Trump notified Congress in letters of his “intent to terminate” trade benefits for both countries under the GSP eligibility criteria. Under the United States GSP programme, nearly 2,000 products including auto components and textile materials can enter the US duty-free if the beneficiary developing countries meet the eligibility criteria. India was the largest beneficiary of the programme in 2017 with USD 5.7 billion in imports to the US given dutyfree status and Turkey the fifth largest with USD 1.7 billion in covered imports, according to a Congressional Research Service report issued in January. AGENCIES (SEE P13)
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.