THURSDAY 11 MAY 2023 Pages 12 |` 5.00|LC www.thestatesman.com KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR PAK JUDGE RULES IMRAN KHAN CAN BE HELD FOR 8 DAYS LOOSE TONGUES P6 WEATHER PARTLY CLOUDY SKY. THE MAXIMUM AND MINIMUM TEMPERATURE WOULD BE AROUND 38 AND 22 DEGREES CELSIUS RESPECTIVELY. RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max. 61% TEMPERATURE Max: 36.7°C (-3) SUN RISES 05:53 hrs MOON RISES 00:54 hrs ZELENSKYY URGES EU CHIEF TO START MEMBERSHIP TALKS P9 P10 Karnataka registers 65 pc polling till 5 pm Exit polls divided, some predict Congress win, others BJP Min. 23% STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE Min: 20.9°C (-4) SUN SETS 19:02 hrs MOON SETS 10:28 hrs strongly in the last two months and they may spring a surprise. Charges of corruption are being thrown at Bommai government but voters do not look at Bommai as BJP.” NEW DELHI, 10 MAY arnataka registered 65.69 per cent polling till 5.00 pm in the just concluded state Assembly elections. The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress are in a stiff contest in this state which is equally crucial to both parties. While for the BJP, Karnataka is the only saffron bastion south of Vindhyas, and winning here would help its prospects in the elections in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, for the Congress, if it comes to power it will be a big relief for the grand old party not used to winning of late. A win here would also mean that they will hold sway in two big states, the other being Rajasthan. As per the latest reports, analysts are predicting that due to the sudden high turn-out of voters in the post-lunch hours, the voting is likely to surpass 70 per cent. Meanwhile, exit poll surveys in Karnataka are giving a divided results, some in favour of the Congress and others in favour of the BJP. The Janata Dal-Secular and Others are lagging far behind, and only a hung K THUMBNAILS A rickshaw puller rests on his rickshaw on a hot summer day, in Prayagraj on Wednesday. ANI Situation in violence hit-Manipur improving: M The situation in the ethnic violence-hit Manipur improved further on Wednesday with the authorities relaxing curfew in 11 districts, including Imphal West and Churachandpur for six hours in the morning. Mobile internet service will continue to remain suspended in the state till 13 May. On the other hand, people are running out of cash as all the banks and ATMs are closed till now. The price of petrol has gone up to Rs. 200 per litre while a 50 kg bag of rice which used to be sold for Rs. 600 per bag has today touched Rs 2000 per bag. (Page 4) Voters stand in the queue to cast their votes at a polling booth during the Karnataka Legislative Assembly elections 2023, at Sarvodaya High School, Shri Ram Puran, in Bengaluru on Wednesday. ANI assembly will bring them into political action. While BJP has tried to make it a Narendra Modi versus Congress polls and has also exhorted that the “double engine government” will benefit the state, Congress tried to make it a more issue-based campaign, raising issues like the denial of tickets to the two Lingayat leaders, Laxman Savadi and Jagadish Shettar by the BJP. However, ultimately BJP gave more than 60 tickets to the Lingayats. Also for the first time, in the Old Mysuru region, BJP is trying to make inroads. Union home minister Amit Shah went to Mandya the Vokkaliga bas- SNAKES, LADDERS AND LAST-OVER THRILLS tion and more recently PM Modi kickstarted his campaign from there. Issues apart, in these elections, the voters mostly maintained a studied silence and thus one could see no perceptible wave of any party. While Congress made charges of corruption and steep price rise against the Bommai government, it promised five welfare guarantees to the people if brought to power. Political observer Dharamsenan, who has his ear to the ground in South Indian states gives a slight edge to BJP even though the exit polls are divided between the BJP and the Congress. “I think BJP really came back What do the exit polls say According to India Today-Axis My India exit poll, Congress is poised to win a majority with 122140 seats, the BJP will get 62-80 seats, JD(S) 20-25 and others 0-3 seats. News24-Today's Chanakya predicted 92 seats for the BJP, 120 for the Congress, 12 for JD-S. Times Now-ETG poll and India TV-CNX poll also predicted Congress hitting the majority mark. The ABP-C Voter exit poll gave 83-95 seats to BJP, 100112 to Congress, 21-29 to JD(S) and 2-6 to others. According to the News Nation-CGS survey, BJP could get 114 seats while Congress will get 86 seats. Suvarna News-Jan Ki Baat also gives an edge to the BJP over Congress with BJP likely to get 94-117 seats while Congress will get anything between 91106 seats. The poll of polls shows an advantage for the Congress with the party poised to win 109 seats, BJP 91 seats and JD-S 23. P12 PM Narendra Modi to make state visit to USA in June STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 10 MAY Prime Minister Narendra Modi will embark on an official state visit to the United States, which will include a state dinner on 22 June, following an invitation from President Joseph Biden and First Lady Jill Biden. The visit will underscore the growing importance of the strategic partnership between India and the US as the two nations collaborate across numerous sectors. The two leaders will have an opportunity to review strong bilateral coopera- tion in various areas of mutual interest, including technology, trade, industry, education, research, clean energy, defense, security, healthcare, and deepening people- to-people connections. Mr Modi and President Biden will also explore ways to strengthen India-US collaboration in plurilateral and multilateral fora, including in the G20. They would reflect on their shared vision for a free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific and discuss opportunities to expand and consolidate the Quad engagement. “This historic visit offers a valuable opportunity for India and the US to further deepen a comprehensive and forwardlooking global strategic partnership,” the Ministry of External Affairs said. What kind of govt is this? PM takes swipe at feuding Cong leaders in Raj STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE JAIPUR, 10 MAY Taking a swipe at the feuding Congress leaders in Rajasthan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said a game of ‘loot the chair, and save the chair' has been running for the last five years, and no one cares about Rajasthan’s development. “In the last 5 years, an ugly form of politics has been seen in Rajasthan... What kind of government is this that the Chief Minister does not trust his MLAs, what kind of government is this that the MLAs do not trust the CM. Everyone is competing to humiliate each other. In such a situation, who would care about the development of Rajasthan,” Mr Modi told a massive BJP rally at Abu Road (in photo). The jibe came a day after former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot attacked the Rajasthan Chief Minister, saying Mr Ashok Gehlot's leader seemed to be the BJP's Vasundhara Raje and not Sonia Gandhi. “The people of Rajasthan have to bear the brunt of their (Congress) selfish politics. Law and order has been destroyed in Rajasthan under Congress rule. It used to be rare to hear about crimes in Rajasthan, now criminals are now roaming around fearlessly. Mothers, sisters and daughters have had to pay the biggest price for this,”he said. Same-sex marriage: Centre says SC declaration not best course of action Bengal ban on The Kerala Story: SC to hear plea Jury finds Trump liable for sexual NCLT admits Go First’s plea abuse, awards accuser $5 million for insolvency SNS & AGENCIES STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE ASSOCIATED PRESS NEW DELHI, 10 MAY NEW YORK, 10 MAY The Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to hear on Friday (12 May) a plea of the producer of the film ‘The Kerala Story’ challenging the West Bengal government’s decision to ban the screening of the controversial film in the State. Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud, heading a Bench also comprising Justice S. Ravindra Bhat and Justice Pamidighantam Sri Narasimha agreed to hear the plea on 12 May after senior advocate Harish Salve sought an urgent listing. Appearing for the film maker, Mr Salve told the bench “We are losing money every day and now there is another State which says it will do the same.” CJI Chandrachud said, “Ok, list on Friday, serve copies (of the petition) on the State of West Bengal.” Pg3 A jury found Donald Trump liable Tuesday for sexually abusing advice columnist E Jean Carroll in 1996, awarding her $5 million in a judgment that could haunt the former US president as he campaigns to regain the White House. The verdict was split: Jurors rejected Ms Carroll’s claim that she was raped, finding Mr Trump responsible for a lesser degree of sexual abuse. The judgment adds to Mr Trump’s legal woes and offers vindication to Ms Carroll, whose allegations had been mocked and dismissed by Mr Trump for years. Jurors, who took only three hours of deliberation before they announced the verdict, also found Mr Trump liable for defaming Ms Carroll over her allegations. Mr Trump did not attend NEW DELHI, 10 MAY The Centre on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that the court's hinting on Tuesday at a possibility of declaration being made of something less than marriage but something more than the present status of same-sex couples may not be the correct course of action.It stressed that the legislature has the wherewithal to regulate the fallout and the court "will not be able to foresee, envisage, comprehend, and thereafter deal with the fallout of that declaration”. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, submitted before a fivejudge Bench, headed by Chief Justice of India D.Y. Chandrachud, that during Tuesday's dialogue, "it fell from your lordships that there is a possibility of declaration being made something less than marriage but something more than the present status". “Having examined that, my lord, that may not be the correct course of action. Your lordships' declaration would be a law within the meaning of Article 141, binding all and not all just courts, binding the whole nation,” he said. On Tuesday, senior advocate Kapil Sibal, assisting the court, in a debate over the issue of same-sex marriage countered the petitioners' side argument that since Parliament would do nothing about their right to marry, the apex court must issue a constitutional declaration to force it to enact a law giving legal sanction to their marriages. “I say that it is a very dangerous route to take,” he said. The Bench ~ also comprising Justices S.K. Kaul, S. Ravindra Bhat, Hima Kohli, and P.S. Narasimha ~ observed that it may not be correct to say the apex court cannot issue a constitutional declaration. It had said that Parliament, in the past, did follow up on constitutional declarations by making laws. During the hearing on Wednesday, Mr Mehta said that "the difficulty would be this, any declaration of law would bind every individual in the country, who is not before your lordships...". “My worry was this when a declaration is made either by legislature or court, legislature has the wherewithal to regulate the fall out. Your lordship will not be able to foresee, envisage, comprehend, and thereafter deal with the fallout of that declaration. Fallout can be manifold in various facets of life,” Mr Mehta said. the civil trial and was absent when the verdict was read. Mr Trump immediately lashed out on his social media site, claiming that he does not know Ms Carroll and referring to the verdict as “a disgrace” and “a continuation of the greatest witch hunt of all time.” He promised to appeal. The jury awarded Carroll $2 million for Trump’s sexual abuse and $20,000 in punitive damages. For defamation, jurors awarded $1 million for Trump’s October statement, another $1.7 million for harm to Ms Carroll’s reputation and $280,000 in punitive damages. There’s no possibility of Mr Trump facing criminal charges for attacking Ms Carroll, as the legal time limit has long since passed. Mr Trump’s lawyer, Joseph Tacopina, told reporters the jury’s rejection of the rape claim while finding Trump responsible for sexual abuse was “perplexing” and “strange.” “Part of me was obviously very happy that Donald Trump was not branded a rapist,” he said. In a written statement, Ms Carroll’s lawyer, Roberta Kaplan said the verdict proved nobody is above the law, “not even the president of the United States.” Ms Carroll, in her own statement, said she sued Mr Trump to “clear my name and to get my life back. Today, the world finally knows the truth. This victory is not just for me but for every woman who has suffered because she was not believed.” Sanitation milestone achieved ~ 50 pc of villages now ODF Plus No jurisdiction, say Delhi STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 10 MAY The country has achieved yet another major milestone under the Swachh Bharat Mission Gramin (SBM-G) with 50 per cent of the total villages in the country achieving ODF Plus status under phase II of the mission. An ODF Plus village is one which has sustained its Open Defecation Free (ODF) status along with implementing either solid or liquid waste management systems. As of date, more than 2.96 lakh villages have declared themselves ODF Plus, which is a significant step towards achieving the SBM-G phase II goals by 2024-25. The top performing states in terms of percentage of ODF Plus villages are - Telangana (100 per cent), Karnataka (99.5 per cent), Tamil Nadu (97.8 per cent) & Uttar Pradesh (95.2 per cent) among the big states and Goa (95.3 per cent) and Sikkim (69.2 per The top performing states in terms of percentage of ODF Plus villages are ~ Telangana (100%), Karnataka (99.5%), Tamil Nadu (97.8 %) & UP (95.2 %) among the big states and Goa (95.3%) and Sikkim (69.2%) among small states Between 2014-15 and 2021-22, the central government allocated a total of Rs 83,938 cr to Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen As of date, more than 2.96 lakh villages have declared themselves ODF Plus, which is a significant step towards achieving the SBM-G phase II goals by 2024-25 cent) among small states. Among UTs, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Dadra Nagar Havelli & Daman Diu and Lakshadweep have 100 per cent ODF Plus Model villages. These states and UTs have shown remarkable progress in achieving the ODF Plus status, and their efforts have been instrumental in reaching this milestone. Of the 2,96,928 ODF Plus villages, 2,08,613 villages are ODF Plus Aspiring villages with arrangements for Solid Waste Management or Liquid Waste Management, 32,030 villages are ODF Plus Rising villages with arrangements for An ODF Plus village is one which has sustained its Open Defecation Free (ODF) status along with implementing either solid or liquid waste management systems both Solid Waste Management and Liquid Waste Management and 56,285 villages are ODF Plus Model villages. ODF Plus Model village is one which is sustaining its ODF status and has arrangements for both Solid Waste Management and Liquid Waste Management; observes visu- al cleanliness, i.e., minimal litter, minimal stagnant wastewater, no plastic waste dump in public places; and displays ODF Plus Information, Education & Communication (IEC) messages. So far, 1,65,048 villages have arrangements for solid waste management, 2,39,063 villages have arrangements for liquid waste management, 4,57,060 villages have minimal stagnant water and 4,67,384 villages have minimal litter. Between 2014-15 and 202122, the central government allocated a total of Rs 83,938 crore to Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen. The allocation for the year 2023-24 is Rs. 52,137 crore. In addition to the SBM(G) funds, there is a clear allocation of 15th Finance Commission funds for sanitation. These funds have been utilised to build sanitation assets, promote behavior change, and implement solid and liquid waste management systems. cops on Pak woman’s tweet AGENCIES NEW DELHI, 10 MAY In a bizarre turn of events, social media platforms were set abuzz after the arrest of former Pakistan's Prime Minister, Imran Khan. Amongst the flurry of messages flooding the digital realm, one Twitter user managed to capture everyone's attention with a rather unconventional ‘plea for justice’. Twitter user Sehar Shinwari, a self-proclaimed social activist from Karachi in Pakistan, took to the platform to share her 'grievances'. In a tweet that gained rapid attention, she wrote, "Anyone knows the online link of Delhi Police? I have to file a complaint against the Indian PM & Indian Intelligence Agency RAW who are spreading chaos and terrorism in my country Pakistan. If the Indian courts are free (As they claim), then I am sure the Indi- an Supreme Court will provide me justice.” As the tweet circulated, netizens eagerly awaited a response from the Delhi Police to see how they would handle such an unusual request. Without missing a beat, the Delhi Police's social media team decided to play along, delivering a witty response that left everyone in stitches. "We are afraid we still do not have jurisdiction in Pakistan. But would like to know how come you are tweeting when the internet has been shut down in your country!," they quipped, tagging Sehar's tweet. Sehar, caught off guard by the Delhi Police's response, found herself in a predicament - and the butt of humour. Amidst the waves of laughter that resonated across the online community, Sehar’s tweet became an instant sensation. proceedings SNS & AGENCIES NEW DELHI , 10 MAY The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) in its judgement on Wednesday admitted the plea of Go First Airlines for insolvency proceedings. The budget airline on last Thursday had filed a petition with the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), seeking protection under bankruptcy law. It had also sought an interim moratorium to prevent the seizure of its 26 aircraft by aircraft lessors. In addition, the airline sought direction to appoint an insolvency resolution process (IRP) for the betterment of Go First. The NCLT, the President Justice Ramalingam Sudhakar and technical member LN Gupta announced the order, adding, "We appoint Abhilash Lal as IRP (Insolvency Resolution Professional). Suspended board of directors will cooperate with the IRP." The NCLT court also said, "The suspended directors are also ordered to deposit Rs 5 crore to make the immediate expenses." On the moratorium sought by the airline, the court said, "The necessity of going into the merits of the application is that the Section 10 is already been admitted in respect of the corporate applicant and the moratorium is already being initiated." According to the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), the effect of such an interim moratorium is that all pending legal proceedings with respect to any 'debt' are deemed to have been stayed. Crisis-hit Go First had sought various interim directions from the NCLT bench, including restraining lessors from taking back aircraft, and the Directorate General of Civil Aviation from taking any adverse action against the airline. The Wadia Group-owned airline has liabilities worth around Rs 11,000 crore.
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