11012018-TTC-01.qxd 1/11/2018 1:22 AM Page 1 13 established in 1881 thursday, january 11, 2018 chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | jammu | srinagar | www.tribuneindia.com | vol. 2 no. 11 | 16 pages | ~4.50 | regd. no. chd/0006/2018-2020 /thetribunechd SC:186 anti-Sikh riots cases to be re-investigated /thetribunechd Foreign investors get big boost in retail, Air India Now, ‘Virtual ID’ to mask Aadhaar number:UIDAI Wants SIT, govt to list names today Cabinet nod to 100% FDI in single brand retail under automatic route Unveils ‘limited KYC’ for user privacy Sanjeev Sharma In addition, foreign invest- New Delhi, January 10 Satya Prakash Tribune News Service New Delhi, January 10 The Supreme Court today decided to set up a threemember special investigation team (SIT) to re-investigate 186 anti-Sikh riots cases. Almost 3,000 people were killed, most of them in Delhi, in the riots that broke out following the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984. A three-judge Bench, headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, took the decision after a perusal of a twojudge supervisory panel report that scrutinised 241 cases closed by an SIT formed by the NDA government. The report was submitted on December 6. The Bench, which initially wanted the government to suggest names for the new SIT today itself, posted it for formal orders on Thursday after Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand said the government needed a day. Appearing on behalf of the victims, senior counsel HS Phoolka suggested the names of former Delhi High Court Chief Justice AP Shah, former Punjab and Haryana High Sivan K to be new ISRO Chairman New Delhi: Noted scientist Sivan K was appointed Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation on Wednesday. He will replace AS Kiran Kumar. The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet approved Sivan’s appointment as Secretary, Department of Space, and Chairman, Space Commission, for 3 years. Sivan is at present Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre. PTI Red Fort shootout: LeT terrorist held New Delhi: The Gujarat Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) on Wednesday claims to have arrested an alleged Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) terrorist, Bilal Ahmad Kawa, wanted for the 2000 fidayeen attack at Delhi’s Red Fort that left three Army jawans dead. Bilal was arrested from the IGI Airport in a joint operation by the Gujarat ATS and Delhi Police special cell. TNS Court CJ Mukul Mudgal and former Delhi HC Judge SN Dhingra. The court asked him to submit the names on Thursday. The Bench made it clear that the two other persons would be a former IPS officer in the rank of Inspector General and a serving IPS officer in the rank of Superintendent of Police. The court said it would not reopen cases in which the accused had been acquitted. The report of the supervisory panel comprising Justices JM Panchal and KSP Radhakrishnan was perused for the first time on Wednesday. The court had assigned the task of examining the 241 cases closed by the SIT to the committee, which was to recommend as to whether the cases were rightly closed or not. The court had said if there was any material to show that a particular case had been wrongly closed, it was open to order prosecution. More than two years after the Narendra Modi government set up an SIT to reinvestigate serious anti-Sikh riots cases that had been closed, it has managed to file chargesheets only in a very small number of cases. Tribune News Service New Delhi, January 10 In a strong signal to foreign investors ahead of the Prime Minister’s visit to the World Economic Forum meet in Davos, the Union Cabinet today cleared a bold package of foreign direct investment (FDI) liberalisation, including 100 per cent FDI without any government approval in single brand retail trading and allowing foreign carriers to acquire upto 49 per cent stake in Air India divestment. The FDI booster comes weeks before the Union Budget presentation on February 1 and days before Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s address at Davos on January 23. As part of the FDI easing across sectors, the Cabinet also cleared 100 per cent FDI under automatic route in construction development, foreign portfolio investors being allowed to invest in power exchanges through primary market and definition of ‘medical devices’ being amended. The FDI easing is likely to lead to larger FDI inflows contributing to growth of FDI POLICY FURTHER LIBERALISED IN KEY SECTORS FIIs/FPIs Civil aviation 49% Allowed to invest in power exchanges through primary market Single brand retail trading 100% under automatic route investment, income and employment. In the financial year 201617, total FDI of $60.08 billion has been received, which is an all-time high. The current FDI policy on SBRT allows 49 per cent FDI under automatic route, and FDI beyond 49 per cent and up to 100 per cent through government approval route. It has now been decided to permit 100 per cent FDI under automatic route for SBRT. Traders, however, are up in arms against the move. The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) said it would facilitate easy entry of MNCs in retail trade of India and 87% deaths in Punjab owing to debt New Delhi, January 10 The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) will conduct its annual examinations for Classes X and XII from March 5. The CBSE Class X examinations will end on April 4, while Class XII examinations will go on till April 12. While the first Class X exam is of Information and Communication Technology, Class XII students will appear for English paper. As per the CBSE guidelines, the affiliate schools will conduct practical exams from mid-January and complete the process by January 31. This will be the first batch to appear for Class X board examination after the CBSE decided to junk the Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE). — PTI Chandigarh, January 10 Punjab saw 16,606 farm suicides during 2000-2015, reveals data compiled by three universities — worrisome indeed, especially at a time when debt-trapped farmers are at the brink. During this period, PAU, Ludhiana recorded 14,667 cases of suicide in six districts — 1,238 in Ludhiana, 1,423 in Moga, 1,706 in Barnala, 3,094 in Bathinda, 3,818 in Sangrur and 3,388 in Mansa. A survey by Punjabi University, Patiala, put the figure at 1,606 in Patiala, Fatehgarh Sahib, Ropar, Hoshiarpur, Mohali, Muktsar and Faridkot for the period. Another study by Guru Nanak Dev Univer- sity, Amritsar, recorded 433 suicides in nine districts during 2000-2010. Of the total 16,606 suicides, 87 per cent were found to be on account of debt and 76 per cent by small farmers with landholdings less than 5 acres. Jagmohan Singh, general secretary of the Bharti Kisan Union (Ekta-Dakonda), blames corporatisation and centralisation of capital for the sorry state of affairs. “Agriculture and industry are in the doldrums as the service sector alone is being promoted,” he says, pointing out that the total debt, which stood at Rs 5,700 crore in 1997, had risen to Rs 9,886 crore in 2002, Rs 21,064 crore continued on page 7 Face of farm loan waiver left high and dry Ahead of polls, Capt launched party’s scheme from Budh Singh’s house Ravi Dhaliwal Tribune News Service Kotli Surat Malhi (Gurdaspur), January 10 He was once the face of Capt Amarinder Singh’s loan waiver scheme ‘Karza Kurki Khatam, Fasal Di Poori Rakam’. On October 12, 2016, Capt Amarinder, then the Punjab Congress president, visited 56-year-old Budh Singh’s ramshackle tenement in this tiny hamlet in the Dera Baba Nanak Assembly segment, to launch his party’s debt waiver scheme. He was accompanied by senior Congress leaders SS Randhawa and BS Pahra. Budh Singh was asked to sign a form. Having done so, he was handed over a receipt amid the clicking of cameras. Capt Amarinder went on to assure the farmer that he would be the first in Pun- Capt Amarinder Singh with Budh Singh during the 2016 “launch”. jab whose loan would be waived, if the Congress was voted to power. Fifteen months down the line, Budh Singh is still wait- ing for his loan to be “taken care of”, as promised. “When the Punjab Government held a function at Mansa to launch the scheme, I thought under automatic route Definition amended in FDI policy CBSE Class X, XII exams from March 5 Tribune News Service Construction development 100% Medical devices Report: 16,606 farm suicides in 15 years Amarjit Thind Foreign airlines can invest in Air India with government approval I would be invited there too. After all, it had all begun from my house. Also, I was promised that I would be the first to benefit from the scheme. But nothing of the sort happened. I only hope my dream of being debt-free will not be shattered,” he says, looking worried. The PPCC had zeroed in on Budh Singh because his house is near the Kotli Surat Malhi police station. Capt Amarinder was to visit the police station to air his grievances regarding a plethora of cases registered against Congress workers at that time. “Buoyed by Capt Amarinder Singh’s assurance, I and my wife Sarabjit Kaur braved the morning chill to cast our votes for the Congress,” recalls a downcast Budh Singh, wondering if he had been taken for a ride. would also violate BJP’s election promise. CAIT said such a step will also result in making a large number of people jobless and this decision is a step towards allowing FDI in multi-brand retail. It added that the government is more interested in paving way for the MNCs to control and dominate the retail trade of India. The Union Cabinet also decided to do away with the restriction and allow foreign airlines to invest up to 49 per cent under approval route in Air India. The condition is that substantial ownership and effective control of Air India will continue to be vested in Indian national. ments in Air India, including that of foreign airlines, will not exceed 49 per cent either directly or indirectly. The industry body said in a statement that foreign airlines have been allowed to invest up to 49 per cent in Air India with approval. This is expected to bring some capital to support a turnaround in the national carrier, it said. Manish B Agarwal, Partner and Leader, Infrastructure, PwC India, said, “Besides bringing Air India at par with others, this is also a positive move for the privatisation process, as it will enable wider participation.” As per the current policy, foreign airlines are allowed to invest under government approval route in the capital of Indian companies operating scheduled and nonscheduled air transport services, up to the limit of 49 per cent of their paid-up capital. However, this provision was not applicable to Air India. The move comes at a time when the government is working on the modalities for strategic disinvestment of the loss-making Air India and is expected to attract more bidders for the airline. In a bid to address privacy concerns, the UIDAI today introduced a new concept of “Virtual ID” which an Aadhaar cardholder can generate from its website and give for various purposes, including SIM verification, instead of sharing the actual 12-digit biometric ID. This will give the users the option of not sharing their Aadhaar number at the time of authentication. The Virtual ID, which would be a random 16-digit number, together with biometrics of the user would give any authorised agency, like a mobile company, limited details like name, address and photograph, which are enough for any verification. Officials said a user can generate as many Virtual IDs as he or she wants. The older ID gets automatically cancelled once a fresh one is generated. The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has also introduced the concept of “limited KYC” under which it will only provide need-based or limited details of a user to an authorised agency that is providing a particular service, say, a telco. On Jan 4, a Tribune report had pointed to a security breach in the UIDAI system The Virtual ID will be a temporary and revocable 16-digit random number mapped to a person’s Aadhaar number and the Aadhaar-issuing body will start accepting it from March 1, 2018. From June 1, it will be compulsory for all agencies that undertake authentication to accept the Virtual ID from their users. Agencies that do not migrate to the new system to offer this additional option to their users by the stipulated deadline will face financial disincentives. “Aadhaar number holder can use Virtual ID in lieu of Aadhaar number whenever authentication or KYC services are performed. Authentication may be performed using the Virtual ID in a manner similar to using Aadhaar number,” a UIDAI circular said. continued on page 7 PCI seeks report: back page
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