30062018-TTC-01.qxd 30-06-2018 01:28 Page 1 13 established in 1881 saturday, june 30, 2018 chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | jammu | srinagar | www.tribuneindia.com | vol. 2 no. 179 | 24 pages | ~5.00 | regd. no. chd/0006/2018-2020 /thetribunechd /thetribunechd Not all Swiss money is black, defends Centre Says defaulters to face music after info flows in 2019 A boy seems to be welcoming the onset of monsoon at the Golden Temple in Amritsar, on Friday. PTI It’s official, monsoon has covered entire country New Delhi, June 29 Monsoon has covered the entire country around two weeks ahead of its normal date, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Friday. The seasonal rains reached Sri Ganganagar — its last outpost in the country located in west Rajasthan — much ahead of normal arrival date of July 15. Generally, the monsoon covers the entire country by July 1 but west Rajasthan gets rains later. However, this year, strong easterly rains transported the current faster to cover northwest India ahead of schedule. Meanwhile, according to an IMD statement, the monsoon trough, which is currently seen to the south of its normal position, is likely to shift northwards towards the foothills of the Himalayas from July 1 to July 6. As a result, the rainfall activity is likely to reduce over Central India and increase along the foothill regions around July 1 and 2. — TNS New Delhi, June 29 On the back foot over surging Indian deposits in Swiss banks, the government on Friday said not all this money was black and that defaulters would be punished once information starts flowing from Switzerland, starting January 2019, under the new bilateral data-sharing arrangements. Finance Minister Piyush Goyal and Union Minister Arun Jaitley rose in defence of the government after the Congressled Opposition targeted the BJP regime for allegedly failing to retrieve black money and following policies that led to a massive rise in Indian deposits in banks of the Alpine nation. Goyal wondered how all this money could be “assumed to be black” after Congress chief Rahul Gandhi took a swipe at PM Narendra Modi, who had made graft and black money retrieval major election issues. “2014, he said: I will bring back all the ‘black’ money in Swiss banks and put 15 lakh NO KNEE-JERK REACTION ON RUPEE FALL: GOYAL As the rupee fell to historic lows, FM Piyush Goyal said there would be no “knee- jerk reactions”. “I have full faith that the RBI, which manages foreign exchange and rates, and the government will sit together and discuss. We will take a call on appropriate measures considering the global situation.” in each Indian bank A/C. 2016, he said: Demonetisation will cure India of ‘black’ money. 2018, he says: 50% jump in Swiss bank deposits by Indians is ‘white’ money. No ‘black’ in Swiss banks!” Gandhi tweeted, triggering a wave of Opposition reactions. Even KC Tyagi of JD-U, BJP’s ally in Bihar, called the trends “worrisome”, saying everyone had hoped black money would be curbed postdemonetisation. CPM’s Sitaram Yechury and CPI’s D Raja also attacked the BJP for “waiving corporate loans and allowing fraudsters to flee with bank monies”. The government put up a strong face with Goyal promising action against those guilty of holding black money. Jaitley wrote a blog to cement the point that “to assume all deposits are per se tax-evaded money or that Switzerland in the matter of illegal deposits is what it was decades ago is to start on a shaky presumption”. He said the flow of information from Switzerland will start from January 2019. “Any illegal depositor knows it is a matter of months before his name becomes public and he will be subjected to the harsh penal provisions of the black money law,” Jaitley insisted. In a veiled reference to Rahul Gandhi, Jaitley said those who participate in public discourse must understand these basic facts before expressing an opinion which may be ill-informed. — TNS edit: Swiss bank balance TODAY’S MATCHES FRANCE VS ARGENTINA URUGUAY VS PORTUGAL 7.30 PM 11.30 PM PAGE 18 HC no to Metro strike, relief for 25 lakh commuters New Delhi: In a relief to around 25 lakh Delhiites using Metro services every day, the Delhi High Court on Friday restrained the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) staff from going on strike from midnight over a number of demands, including pay-scale revision, saying their action did not appear justified. The Delhi Government had earlier threatened to impose the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA). Later, the DMRC approached the HC after two rounds of talks with DMRC Staff Council representatives failed. After hearing, Justice Sanghi passed the ex parte interim order holding that prima facie, the action of the metro staff did not seem justified or legal. PTI NDA-ruled states worst performers Pak accepts grey list Engg told father in morning she in list of NITI’s ‘aspirational’ districts on terror financing was going to fly in a ‘sick aircraft’ Mukesh Ranjan Tribune News Service New Delhi, June 29 As the Narendra Modi government enters into the last year of its current tenure, not-so-good news has emanated from NITI Aayog. The national think tank has picked holes in the development agenda claims by key NDA-ruled states — UP Bihar , and Jharkhand — and has given them thumbs down on social indicators. Gujarat’s industrial district of Dahod topped the first Delta ranking released on Friday by NITI Aayog that captures incremental improvements of aspirational districts on health, education and other development parameters. However, three of the key NDA-ruled states figured at the bottom. Incidentally, non-NDA states — Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu — were placed prominently on the list of states that made most progress. The districts that made it to the top five included West Sikkim, Ramanathapuram (Tamil TOP OF LADDER (4 RULED BY NON-NDA) 1 2 3 4 5 Dahod (Gujarat) West Sikkim Ramanathapuram (TN) Vizianagaram (AP) YSR Kadapa (AP) BOTTOM OF HEAP (ALL RULED BY NDA) 108 Kupwara (J&K)* 107 Begusarai (Bihar) 106 Ranchi (Jharkhand) 105 Simdega (Jharkhand) 104 Khagadia (Bihar) *(Before end of alliance with PDP) Nadu), Vizianagaram (AP) and YSR Kadapa (AP). In contrast, while Kupwara in Jammu and Kashmir earned the worst-performer tag, nine worst-performing districts came from the NDA-ruled states of Bihar, UP Jharkhand, and Chhat, tisgarh. “Begusarai, Banka and Khagaria were among the worst-performing districts in Bihar,” the report said. The NDA has been in power in the state for 13 years under the leadership of Nitish Kumar. The BJP-ruled Jharkhand’s Simdega and Ranchi, too, were at the bottom of the list. Also, Chhattisgarh, where the BJP has been in power for about 14 years, too, was rapped for poor performance as Maoist-hit Sukma found mention in the bottom 10 of the list. Bhoopalpalli in Telangana, which was ranked 100th in baseline ranking on health and nutrition, jumped to fourth position for best performance in pre and post-natal care. The five worst-performing districts in the ranking for progress on improving educational infrastructure also came from the NDA-ruled states of UP (Chitrakoot and Balrampur) and Bihar (Nawada, Khagaria, and Purnia). The best five performing districts for education infrastructure were from AP (Vizianagaram, YSR Kadapa, and Vizag), Gujarat (Dahod), and Bihar (Aurangabad). Smita Sharma Tribune News Service New Delhi, June 29 The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Plenary Meet that concluded in Paris has unanimously agreed to implement the decision adopted earlier in February to grey list Pakistan. Following notification of the compliance report, the global watchdog will act against Pakistan for the second time under the monitoring and reporting programme for its failure to counter terror financing. Pakistan, that was greylisted from 2012-2015, faces general elections in July and has a caretaker government in place currently. The Tribune has learnt that Pakistan’s Interim Finance Minister Shamshad Akhtar made a strong statement of support for the Action Plan that FATF has made. Sources quoted Akhtar as saying, “Pakistan has great respect for FATF standards and procedures and will be steadfast in the implementation of the Action Plan.” This after diplomatic efforts failed to get support of even traditional friends Saudi Arabia, China and Turkey in this round of meeting. “Pakistan has developed an action plan with the FATF to address the most serious deficiencies. We welcome the high-level political commitment of Pakistan to the action plan,” the FATF said. Following the grey listing, if Islamabad does not comply with the FATF blueprint, it could be moved to the black list next year. Pakistan and its State Bank will now be under immense scrutiny of the global watchdog that sets regulatory and legal mechanisms to counter terror financing. Moving forward, Pakistan stands a risk downgrade by multilateral lenders like IMF , World Bank and Asian Development Bank that would make borrowing of funds difficult and impact its foreign reserves. Also, reduction in its risk-rating could impact its stock markets. However, Pakistan continues to argue it has clamped down on UN-proscribed terror organisations and individuals. Chandigarh, June 29 Hours before the 12-seater aircraft crashed in a crowded Mumbai suburb on Thursday, maintenance engineer Surabhi Gupta — one of the five killed — told her father in Sonepat that she was going to fly in a “sick aircraft”. “We had a routine conversation before she told me that the aircraft she was going to fly later in the day was sick, in a bad condition,” Surabhi’s father SP Gupta said. The grieving father wondered who gave the permission to fly a “sick aircraft”. At the same time, he said he was confident that a high-level probe would be conducted and those responsible for the lapse held accountable. He said Surabhi got married only last year and her husband was also a pilot. He recalled that Surabhi was often referred to as astronaut Kalpana Chawla by residents in their hometown in Uttar Pradesh. “She was a brave young woman who was fond of heights.” — PTI Co-pilot survived crash in 2007 The inconsolable husband of Maria Zuberi in Mumbai. PILOT FOR 17 YEARS, MARIA WAS A STAR Lucknow: Maria Zuberi, ‘Guddo’ for the family, had been flying for the last 17 years. The pilot of the ill-fated aircraft, she was the elder daughter of a reputed doctor from Allahabad, IH Zuberi. Her parents had spoken to her a day before the tragedy and rushed to Mumbai on hearing the news. “Her only child Zainab had just cleared her Class X exam and Maria was really happy. This was no time to go,” her aunt grieved. Maria, who was 48, had been flying chartered planes for various companies in Mumbai. TNS New Delhi, June 29 A neighbour of Pradeep Singh Rajput, the co-pilot killed in Thursday’s plane crash in Mumbai, described him as a friendly person who once told him that he had survived a crash in 2007. Pradeep lived in Gold Croft Society in Dwarka’s Sector 11 with his wife and a son, who is in merchant navy. “I remember, how in one of our conversations, Pradeep shared with me that he had survived a plane crash in Rajasthan in 2007 while being the co-pilot of the flight. Though he sustained injuries, all occupants on board were evacuated safely. Despite the accident, he returned to flying after recuperating,” he said. The victim was a native of Jalandhar in Punjab. He had been residing in Delhi for the past 15-20 years, the neighbour said. — PTI Stranded youths: 25 agents booked Only 47% of 4-laning up to Solan through Aparna Banerji Tribune News Service Jalandhar, June 29 The Kapurthala police have booked 25 illegal travel agents of Sultanpur Lodhi, Jalandhar, Begowal and Delhi following reports that many youths of Sultanpur Lodhi and Kapurthala sent abroad by them are either stuck on way to the US or are lodged in various jails there. Even as the Jalandhar police recently cracked the whip on 20 unlicensed travel agents, this is the first major FIR against travel agents in Doaba, based on a complaint following recent reports that many youths are lodged in California, Texas and Arizona jails. These agents have been booked under Sections 420 and 120-B of the IPC and Section 13 of the Punjab Prevention of Human Smuggling Act. Police sources said the complaint was against around 30 agents, but names GULLIBLE PUNJABIS TAKEN FOR A RIDE ■ Twenty-five agents operating in Delhi, Begowal, Jalandhar and Sultanpur Lodhi have been booked following complaints that many youths sent abroad by them are stuck on the way or lodged in US jails ■ The assets of most of these agents have increased manifold over the past few years; many of them who worked as drivers some years ago now own huge moveable and immoveable assets FEE THEY CHARGED ~35 lakh FROM STRANGERS ~22-25 lakh FROM ACQUAINTANCES of only eight of them have been mentioned in the FIR. Efforts were on to ascertain identities of other agents, they said. Those named in the FIR include Surjit Singh (alias Bagga, alias Dodhi), Sakattar Singh, Baldev Singh, Titu, Lali, Gurmeet Singh, Gurpal Singh and Major Singh. While one of the agents booked is from Delhi, one is from Begowal, two from Jalandhar and five from Sultanpur Lodhi. Baldev Singh is also an Akali leader and former chairman of the Sultanpur Lodhi market committee. Sultanpur Lodhi SHO Sarabjit Singh said: “Some villagers approached us claiming that they have been duped of crores on the pretext of sending their kin abroad. Most of the agents have been booked based on complaints of kin of youths who left India for the US or Canada six-seven months ago. But preliminary reports indicate that some of them might be in the Arizona jail, but there is no official confirmation yet.” The FIR also cites a report that appeared in a regional newspaper claiming that 30 youths of Kapurthala were currently lodged in the Arizona jail. Sultanpur Lodhi MLA Navtej Singh Cheema said, “At present, at least 30 to 35 youths of my constituency are stuck abroad. Most of the agents booked by the police have their assets doubled or tripled over the past few years. Many of them who worked as drivers some years ago, now own huge moveable and immoveable assets.” Deadline ended on March 31, NHAI approval awaited for additional funds Ambika Sharma YEAR-END NEW TARGET, LOOKS IMPROBABLE Tribune News Service Solan, June 29 A hassle-free drive to hill towns from Parwanoo, without the traffic jams that are the new normal, is far from becoming a reality anytime soon. The 30-month deadline to complete four-laning of the Parwanoo-Solan section of National Highway-22 ended on March 31, but three months down the line, only 47 per cent of the work has been done. Work on the 39-km stretch is likely to further slow down in the next three months in view of the onset of monsoon. In October last year, GR Infraprojects, the company executing the project, had applied to the National Highways Authority of India for a 15-month extension, but an approval is still awaited. The project, that began in Today’s issue consists of 24 pages, including four-page The Tribune Trends. DHARAMPUR ■ Project officials are hopeful that work will be completed by year-end if NHAI sorts out the additional budget issue, but SOLAN given the slow pace of assessment, it seems improbable KUMARHATTI 53% PARWANOO ■ The issue of additional expenditure of ~134 crore could not be sorted out for the past year or so. This will push the project cost to ~882 crore from ~748 crore. ■ Work on inner lining of one-way tunnel on Barog bypass will be completed by September-end, says project incharge WORK INCOMPLETE A FILE PHOTO OF PARWANOO-SHIMLA HIGHWAY September 2016, has been struggling to keep pace with the deadline, allegedly due to the inordinate delay in sorting out various key issues. One such issue involves rais- ing the height of breast walls —masonry or RCC structures supporting the uphill slopes. “As per the project design, such walls of 1.5 to 3 metre height have been construct- ed along the hill side, but there is a stretch of 10.8 km that needs much higher breast walls in view of frequent landslides,” said project incharge Debasis Patra.
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