CMYK FRIDAY www.thestatesman.com 17 SEPTEMBER 2021 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 12 |` 5.00|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR SEGREGATED STUDIES ‘FBI TURNED BLIND EYE TO REPORTS OF GYMNASTS’ ABUSE P10 WEATHER Generally cloudy sky with few spells of thundershower. Temperature will be in the range of 33-26 degrees Celsius. RAINFALL: NIL RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max. 97% TEMPERATURE Max: 33.5 °C(+1) SUN RISES 05:24 hrs MOON RISES 14:36 hrs Full moon on 21 P6 P8 Bad bank: Govt OKs `30K cr guarantee Govt guarantee will be invoked if there is loss against threshold value Min. 68% PRESS TRUST OF INDIA Min: 26.4 °C (N) SUN SETS 17:39 hrs MOON SETS 00:21hrs September THUMBNAILS Idols being sold on the eve of Biswakarma Puja at Kumartuli in Kolkata on Thursday. DEEPRO BISWAS GST Council to meet today: The GST Council, chaired by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, will meet on Friday, which among other things may review tax rate of over four-dozen items and extend till 31 December, tax concessions on 11 Covid drugs and whether to tax petrol and diesel under the single national GST tax. NEW DELHI, 16 SEPTEMBER inance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday announced a Rs 30,600 crore government guarantee for the National Asset Reconstruction Company Limited (NARCL) for acquiring stressed loan assets, paving the way for operationalisation of the ‘bad bank’. The decision to provide sovereign guarantee for security receipts (SRs) issued by NARCL was taken at a meeting of the Union Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday. The finance minister in Budget 2021-22 announced setting up of a bad bank as part of resolution of bad loans worth about Rs 2 lakh crore. F The fee for the guarantee would be initially 0.25 per cent, which would progressively increase to 0.5 per cent in case of delay in resolution of bad loans, Financial Services Secretary Debasish Panda said. This would enable speedy disposal of stressed assets and clean up balancesheets of banks for further lending, he said. The finance minister said “the guarantee helps in keeping the face value intact and also gives credibility to the entire exercise so the valuation will be better when it’s realised, actually when it's sold off.” The gap may not be there or very small, so it will not be invoked in every instance, she said, adding there is no immediate liability on the government so there is no fiscal outgo at the moment. SOVEREIGN GUARANTEE The Centre approved guarantee for the National Asset Reconstruction Company Limited (NARCL) for acquiring stressed loan assets, paving the way for operationalisation of the bad bank The bad bank or NARCL will pay up to 15 per cent of the agreed value for the loans in cash and the remaining 85 per cent would be government-guaranteed security receipts. The bad bank or NARCL will pay up to 15 per cent of the agreed value for the loans in cash and the remaining 85 per cent would be government-guaranteed security receipts. The government guarantee would be invoked if there is loss against the threshold value. “For the SRs to hold on and to have their value intact, there is a need for government to give the backstop arrangement and that’s why Rs 30,600 crore has been cleared by the cabinet yesterday,” she said. This sovereign guarantee would be for a period of 5 years and NARCL would have to pay a fee for this. “The SRs are getting the backstop through government funding only in as much as to pay the gap between the realised value (resolution/liquidation) and face value of SRs and this will hold good for five years," Sitharaman said. NEW DELHI, 16 SEPTEMBER SW monsoon unlikely to retreat by Sept-end: e The country will witness an extended monsoon spell this year as rainfall activity over north India shows no sign of decline till the end of September. "There are no signs of monsoon withdrawal from north India for the next 10 days," IMD DG Mrutunjay Mohapatra said. Afghan refugees protest against Pakistan’s involvement in Afghanistan. At the Jantar Mantar, in the Capital on Thursday. SUBRATA DUTTA Delicate caste balance in new Guj ministry, old team dropped STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE GANDHINAGAR, 16 SEPTEMBER The ruling BJP leadership seems to have struck a delicate caste and regional balance as 24 ministers were inducted into the three-dayold Bhupendra Patel ministry in Gujarat today. The party also sought to send a strong message by dropping all the 22 ministers of the outgoing ministry led by Vijay Rupani who stepped down as chief minister on Saturday. This is the first time in the quarter century of BJP rule in Gujarat that the entire team of the outgoing ministry has been kept out of the new council of ministers. Gujarat CM Bhupendra Patel greets Governor Devvrat Among the notable inclusion is Assembly Speaker Rajendra Trivedi who resigned from his post hours before the swearing-in ceremony at the Raj Bhawan this afternoon. All the 24 ministers, including two women, are new faces, and at least three are former Congress men who defected to the BJP before the 2017 Assembly polls. Former state BJP chief Jitubhai Vaghani, former Speaker Rajendra Trivedi and eight others have been inducted as Cabinet ministers. As many as seven Patels have been accommodated in the new ministry followed by six ministers from the Other Backward Classes (OBC). Saurashtra and south Gujarat regions have been adequately represented with seven ministers each while north Gujarat has got only three. SC /ST communities have registered their token presence with two and three ministers respectively. The Jain community of outgoing CM Vijay Rupani has got only one minister. Centre-SC NCLAT impasse ends; Govt to reinstate acting chair STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 16 SEPTEMBER The deadlock between the Supreme Court and the Central government over the premature retirement of former NCLAT chairperson Justice Ashok Iqbal Singh Cheema came to an end as the Centre on Thursday agreed to reinstate Justice Cheema as acting chairperson of the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT), till the date of his retirement on 20 September, enabling him to pronounce judgments pending with him. A bench headed by Chief Justice N V Ramana and also comprising Justices Surya Kant and Hima Kohli had expressed serious displeasure over hasty replacement The govt agreed to reinstate Justice Cheema as acting chairperson of the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal, till the date of his retirement on 20 September A Bench headed by the CJI had expressed serious displeasure over hasty replacement of Justice Cheema with Justice M Venugopal, just 10 days before the former’s retirement. of Justice Cheema with Justice M Venugopal, just 10 days before the former's retirement. The top court had threatened to suo motu impose a stay on the Tribunal Reforms Act of 2021. The bench, in its order, said the current chairperson will be on leave till 20 September and this order is passed keeping in mind the peculiar circumstances of this case. Attorney General K.K. Venugopal, however, clarified that Justice Cheema’s reinstatement should not be treated as a precedent. As the Attorney General responded that it would be “very awkward” for the government to remove Justice Venugopal now, the Chief Justice said the way this order (premature retirement of justice Cheema) was passed is awkward. Venugopal said, “It was said he (Cheema) took leave to write judgments. So, we have decided that he will be allowed to go to office and pronounce judgments.” India today disputed media reports which quoted US Secretary of State Antony Blinken suggesting that Washington was in talks with New Delhi for using airfields in India as “staging areas” for carrying out aerial surveillance and launching attacks on terrorists in and around Afghanistan. At a Press briefing here, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Arindam bagchi said he would not like to go to media reports PM inaugurates defence office complexes; slams Vista critics STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 16 SEPTEMBER Prime Minister Narendra Modi today hit out at the critics of the controversial Rs 20,000 crore Central Vista project as he inaugurated the office complexes of the Defence Ministry in the national capital. “Those running behind the Central Vista project with a stick cleverly suppressed the fact that the defence offices complexes to house 7,000 defence personnel will also be part of the project...they were deliberately silent on this fact and were spreading lies about the project,” he said while addressing a gathering, which included Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Urban Development Minister H S Puri, after launching the multi-storeyed complexes at Kasturba Gandhi Marg and Africa Avenue here. Chief of the Defence Staff, General Bipin Rawat and the three services chiefs were also present. Modi said that with the inauguration of the com- Those running behind the Central Vista project with a stick cleverly suppressed the fact that the defence offices complexes to house 7,000 defence personnel will also be part of the project...they were deliberately silent on this fact and were spreading lies about the project PM NARENDRA MODI plexes today, India has taken another step in developing the country’s capital according to needs and aspirations of a new India in the 75th year of India’s independence. The new office complexes have been constructed at a cost of Rs 775 crore allocated by the Defence Ministry. Officers and staff belonging to 27 different organisations, attached offices of Defence Ministry, service headquarters and other subordinate offices will be placed at the new office complexes. Modi lamented the fact that for a very long time the defence related work was Media reports quoted US Secretary of State Antony Blinken suggesting that Washington was in talks with New Delhi for using airfields in India as “staging areas” for carrying out aerial surveillance and launching attacks on terrorists in and around Afghanistan because what has been reported was “slightly different” from what Blinken had told before the Foreign Affairs Committee of the US House of Representatives. The spokesperson, meanwhile, confirmed that an Indian national, who belongs to the Hindu Khost community, has been missing in Afghanistan and efforts were on to trace him. “We’ve seen a missing person’s report about a reported Indian national - Bansuri Lal - missing in Kabul. We’re in touch with all concerned. We’ve seen reports about the local authorities undertaking an investigation. We’ll continue to monitor the situation,” he said. Reports from Afghanistan said Bansuri Lal, 50, was allegedly abducted at gunpoint from Kabul Tues- Hyderabad rape-murder accused found dead after encounter threat Rakesh Asthana appointed in public interest: Centre tells HC STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 16 SEPTEMBER HYDERABAD, 16 SEPTEMBER The Centre has informed the Delhi High Court that the appointment of Gujaratcadre IPC officer Rakesh Asthana as Delhi Police Commissioner was done in public interest, keeping in mind the diverse law and order challenges faced by the national capital. The Centre, in an affidavit, said that it felt a “compelling need” to appoint Asthana. The affidavit was filed in response to a public interest litigation which has sought quashing of the 27 July order issued by the MHA appointing Asthana as the Delhi Police chief. PTI Days after a minister in the TRS government warned that he would die in an “encounter”, the main accused in the rape and murder of a six-year-old girl in Saidabad area of Hyderabad was found dead on a railway track at Ghanpur in Jangaon district. According to the police, Pallakonda Raju (30) who was on the run for a week now, jumped in front of the Hyderabad-bound Konark Express this morning in a “clear case of suicide.” As locals protested demanding justice and were joined by politicians from BJP Con, gress, Jana Sena and Telan- According to the police, the accused who was on the run for a week now, jumped in front of the Hyderabadbound Konark Express on Thursday morning in a “clear case of suicide.” gana YSR party there were demands for another “encounter” for immediate punishment. A TRS minister Ch Malla Reddy had condemned the crime and had said that the accused will face an encounter. Hyderabad police had formed nine teams to trace him, and announcing a reward of Rs 10 lakhs for information about his whereabouts. Posters with his images were put up everywhere. The state government and the police faced a lot of heat over the heinous crime against a minor who belonged to a Dalit family. According to police commissioner of Warangal, Tarun Joshi, they received a dial-100 call at 9:58 and a team reached the spot immediately. “We had all the details, his identity mark, his background, clothes and other features. This was the same fellow who was involved in the offence.” “Just been informed by Telangana DGP that the beast who raped the child has been traced and found dead on a railway track at station Ghanpur,” informed state Telangana industry minister KT Rama Rao on Twitter. Festive months crucial for Covid spread: Govt STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 16 SEPTEMBER DEADLOCK OVER P12 being conducted from hutments constructed during the second World War which were made keeping in mind horse stable and barracks needs. “This new defence office complex will strengthen the efforts of making the working of our defence forces convenient and effective”, he said. The Prime Minister said these modern offices would go a long way in effectively carrying out all the work related to the security of the nation. The Prime Minister said the work of the Defense Office Complex which was to be completed in 24 months has been completed in a record time of just 12 months. India disputes Blinken’s statement on airfields RISING PITCH STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE New trilateral security alliance: The US, Britain and Australia have announced a new trilateral security alliance for the Indo-Pacific to take on the threats of the 21st century and allow for greater sharing of defence capabilities, including helping Australia acquire nuclear-powered submarines, in a bid to counter China's growing (P10) power in the strategically vital region. WHY GAVASKAR HAS YET TO GET OFF THE MARK SUNIL MITTAL: WILL BRING TELECOM INDUSTRY TOGETHER The festive months of October and November are crucial as far as Covid-19 spread and vulnerability is concerned, said Niti Aayog member and head of national Covid task force Dr VK Paul, stressing the need for caution on the part of the public to retain the gains achieved in pandemic management so far. As per projections, October and November are the most crucial months and vulnerability may increase during these months, Dr Paul told a media conference. “These are also the months of festivities and flu.We have to exercise special caution regarding these two months,” Dr Paul said, adding that even if there is any small surge, it should not be allowed to grow. Govt condemns NYT article on Covid response NEW DELHI, 16 SEPTEMBER 3,33,47,325 3,42,923 The government called the recent New York Times article on India’s Covid response a “provocative, attention seeking” piece that comes at a time when the country is doing well in tackling the pandemic. The article claimed that the “ICMR tailored its findings to fit Prime Minister Narendra Modi's optimistic narrative despite PTI a looming crisis”. UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. THURSDAY 16 SEPTEMBER 2021 He said festivities must be kept low-key. “Overall there is stabilisation and Kerala has also reported drop in cases. Mizoram is a state of concern but we hope condition will improve there by fast vaccination and pandemic response is effective,” Dr Paul said. ICMR director Dr Balram Bhargava said, “Festivals are CMYK 30,570 38,303 4,43,928 on the anvil and sudden increase in population density creates a very conducive environment for viral spread. The call of the hour is vaccine acceptance, maintenance of Covid-appropriate behaviour, responsible travel and responsible festivity.” Officials also said 20 per cent of India’s adult population have received both doses of Covid vaccine and 62 per cent have got at least one dose. Union health minister Mansukh Mandaviya, meanwhile, called for a major push to the Covid vaccination drive during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s birthday on Friday, saying it would be the perfect gift for him. Bengal cases: West Bengal today registered 707 fresh Covid cases and 7 deaths, with Kolkata recording 129 new cases and 1 death. day morning. On PM Modi’s visit to the US next week, the spokesperson said Modi would attend the Quad Summit in Washington on 24 September in Washington and address the UN General Assembly in New York the next day. He would have bilateral talks with President Biden and other Quad leaders~Australian prime Minister Scott Morrison and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga. In New York, Modi was expected to have meetings with some world leaders on the margins of the UNGA. Kohli to step down as T20 captain after WC; Rohit set to take over DUBAI, 16 SEPTEMBER Virat Kohli on Thursday announced he will step down as India’s T20 skipper after the T20 World Cup in UAE but will continue to lead the side in ODIs and Test cricket, a decision that paves the way for Rohit Sharma to captain in the shortest format. “I’ve decided to step down as the T20 captain after this T20 World Cup in Dubai in October,” the 32-year-old Kohli said in a statement posted on his Twitter page. “Understanding workload is a very important thing and considering my immense workload over the last 8-9 years playing all three formats and captaining regularly for last five to six years, I feel I need to give myself space to be fully ready to lead Indian team in Test and ODI cricket,” Kohli explained. For some time, there has been speculation surrounding Kohli’s future as white-ball captain especially in the backdrop of Rohit’s brilliant track record of winning five IPL titles for Mumbai Indians. The 34-year-old Rohit is Kohli’s deputy in the whiteball formats and is most likely to take up the leadership role when India clashes with New Zealand in a home series PTI in November.
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