14022019-TTC-01.qxd 14-02-2019 01:21 Page 1 13 chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | jammu | srinagar | vol.3 no.44 | 16 pages | ~4.50 | regd.no.chd/0006/2018-2020 established in 1881 | thursday, february 14,2019 GLOBAL RECESSION LOOMS, WARNS NOBEL LAUREATE PAUL KRUGMAN PAGE 12 TRUDEAU GOVT IN CRISIS AS MINISTER QUITS PAGE 13 /thetribunechd DIDI: ‘NAMOCRACY’ HAS REPLACED DEMOCRACY BACK PAGE /thetribunechd www.tribuneindia.com CAG: Modi’s Rafale deal is 2.86% cheaper than UPA’s Wrestler-turned-DSP Bhola gets 12 yrs’ jail in drugs case Uses price alignment, raps govt for ‘ignoring’ 20% discount by Eurofighter Akash Ghai Ajay Banerjee Tribune News Service New Delhi, February 13 In a major boost to the Narendra Modi government, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), in its report on the purchase of the 36 Rafale jets, has said the overall price of fighter jets is 2.86 per cent cheaper as compared to the UPA-era deal. The 36 jets are being purchased for ~59,000 crore under a contract from Dassault Aviation of France. The CAG report, however, mildly questions why the government did not accept a 20 per cent discount offered by the Eurofighter, which, along with Rafale, had been initially found technically fit during the UPA regime (2004-2014). The CAG has used a price “alignment formula” to compare the pricing of the two deals offered by Dassault Aviation in 2007 and 2015. The report was tabled in the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha. Comparing this deal with the 126 aircraft deal, which was later scrapped, the CAG says the Modi government saved 17.08 per cent on the India-specific enhancements. It paid 6.54 per cent more for engineering sup- 1 more arrested in Ludhiana gangrape case Tribune News Service Ludhiana, February 13 The Jagraon police today arrested one more accused — Surmo of Khanpur village in Ludhiana — in connection with the gangrape of a 20year-old girl in Ludhiana on Saturday night. Two accused were arrested yesterday. The police believe all those arrested might also be involved in other criminal incidents that have taken place in the area during the past. “After the incident, Surmo had escaped to Kathua in Jammu and Kashmir and stayed there for two days. We had sent teams to Kathua to nab him but he was arrested near Chak Kalan village while he was returning,” said DIG Ranbir Singh Khattra. continued on page 7 CAG report says… 17.08% The NDA saved on Indiaspecific enhancements 6.54% more paid for engineering support package and performance-based logistics 2.86% overall savings by NDA govt Is silent on… ■ CAG report says nothing on the dissent note of the MoD officials, who had objected to the price formula and also to the PMO’s parallel negotiations ■ Sources say the dissent notes have been studied and are part of the 400-odd files on the subject but not added in the report It cannot be that SC is wrong, CAG is wrong and only the dynast is right. Satyameva Jayate. CAG report reaffirms dictum. How does democracy punish those who consistently lied to the nation? Arun Jaitley, UNION MINISTER Even if we accept CAG findings which we don’t, NDA deal is only 2.86% cheaper than UPA’s. This nails lie of Defence Minister and FM, who said it’s 9 to 20% cheaper. Rahul Gandhi, CONGRESS PRESIDENT port package and performance-based logistics. Overall, it saved 2.86 per cent. The report says the delivery schedule for the first 18 aircraft is better by five months than the proposed 126 aircraft deal. However, in terms of delivery of 36 planes, it is better by just one month. The CAG says there are no comparable costs, but in view of the Indo-French statement of 2015 that said the InterGovernment Agreement would be signed for supply of aircraft on terms that would be better vis-à-vis ‘price’, ‘delivery’ and ‘maintenance’ than the ones in 2007, a comparison has been made. The Indian negotiating team aligned the quantities (36 planes) in the 2015 bid with that in the 2007 bid and then the price of 2007 was brought to the 2015 price level by applying the price escalation formula, which used the industrial cost indices published by the French National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies. This was the aligned price (price of 36 flyaway aircraft in 2015 if the prices were the same as the bid of 2007). more reports on page 7 Held guilty by CBI court along with 22 others in 3 cases Tribune News Service On last day of LS, MSY wishes ‘Modi PM again’ Vibha Sharma Tribune News Service New Delhi, February 13 As curtains drew on the 16th Lok Sabha today, Samajwadi Party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav created a flutter in the House when he said he wished to see Narendra Modi as the PM again, a sentiment acknowledged by the BJP leader with folded hands. Oppn parties agree on pre-poll alliance BACK PAGE Mulayam’s blessings for the PM were greeted with much applause by the Treasury benches, while those in the Opposition, including UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi seated next to the SP leader, were left astonished. “I wish all members — 300plus of them belong to BJP-led NDA — return to the House… I wish the PM becomes PM again,” said Yadav. continued on page 7 Mohali, February 13 Arjuna awardee wrestler and former Punjab Police DSP Jagdish Singh Bhola, along with 22 other accused, including NRI Anoop Kahlon and Jagjit Singh Chahal, were today held guilty by a special CBI court here in three cases related to the multi-crore synthetic drug racket that rocked Punjab in 2013. Bhola was awarded 12year sentence in a case registered against him at Mandi Gobindgarh, 10-year term in a case registered at Banur and two-year jail in a case registered at Sirhind. The court also imposed a fine of Rs 2.2 lakh on Bhola. All cases are related to recovery of synthetic drugs and precursor chemicals, besides arms, from his possession. His lawyer said they will challenge the conviction in the Punjab and Haryana High Court. However, in two other cases — one registered at Patiala and another at Sirhind — Bhola was acquitted. He and 49 other accused were present in the court when the verdict was announced. There were a ON JAGDISH BHOLA TRAIL ■ Jagdish Bhola was arrested in November 2013 by Punjab Police from Ghanaur (Panipat) in connection with ~700-crore synthetic drug racket ■ Bhola had been dismissed from service in 2012 after his links with the drug racket were revealed ■ It was after his arrest that police were able to bust the ~6,000-crore synthetic drug racket ■ It was later investigated by CBI; ED began parallel probe into the money trail HOW THE RACKET FLOURISHED ■ Precursor (and controlled) drugs like ephiderine and pseudoephiderine would be diverted from pharmaceutical companies in Baddi (HP) ■ Bhola’s associates had set up illegal units where these drugs were used to manufacture ICE, other party drugs ■ Synthetic drugs were supplied in international market total of 74 accused. Anoop Kahlon from Canada, who was arrested in a drug case registered on March 3, 2013, at the Fatehgarh Sahib police station, has been sent to jail for 15 years. The police claimed to have recovered 16.5-gram heroin from him. Coaccused Kulwinder Rockey (Kahlon’s brother-in-law) was awarded 12 years’ jail. Rockey’s father Kuldeep Singh and his brother-inlaw have been sent to jail for a year. Another co-accused Satinder Dhama got 15-year term in the case, while in another case (registered at Patiala), continued on page 7 16 students injured in Haryana okays 10% EWS quota, Rajasthan clears 5% Pulwama school blast Jats can benefit till case decided quota Bill for Gurjars Srinagar/Anantnag, Feb 13 At least 16 Class X students were injured in a mysterious explosion inside a classroom at a private school in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district today. Pulwama SSP Chandan Kohli said the explosion occurred at Falah-e-Millat school in Kakapora and its cause could not be ascertained immediately. Sources said though all the injured were in a stable condition, seven of them had been referred to Srinagar. A teacher accompanying the injured to a Srinagar hospital said 37 students were present in the class when the explosion took place. “There was a deafening sound and then the wailing of students. We all rushed to the class and saw the students lying wounded,” he said. The school, as per police PROBE TEAM ATTACKED The police team that visited the school for investigation was pelted with stones while its members were leaving the area. The police had to use teargas shells to disperse the stone-pelting crowd. reports, was holding special classes even as most institutes in Kashmir valley remain officially shut during the winter season. The explosion comes a day after a gunfight in nearby Ratnipora village where a militant and a soldier had died. Following the blast, the police carried out preliminary investigation. “We are yet to get a clear picture. Details will be shared as and when something concrete emerges,” the SSP said. — TNS ‘blood all around’ p10 Tribune News Service Chandigarh, February 13 The Haryana government has decided to grant reservation to the extent of 10 per cent each to Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) in case of direct recruitment to Group A, B, C and D posts in all departments, boards, corporations and local bodies and in admissions to all educational institutions to those with a family income that is less than Rs 6 lakh. A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of the state Cabinet here today. Those who fulfil the criteria and are not covered under the existing scheme of reservation for Scheduled Castes/Tribes and Backward Classes — A and B in case of Haryana — will be eligible IN CONTENTION ■ Those not covered under reservation for SCs/STs and BCs — A and B in case of Haryana — will be eligible for EWS benefits ■ Jat Sikhs, Rors, Bishnois, Tyagis and Mulla Jats/Muslim Jats — granted quota as BC (C) — will be eligible for EWS quota till court case for BC status is decided . for the EWS benefits. This means that the Jats and five other castes — Jat Sikhs, Rors, Bishnois, Tyagis and Mulla Jat/Muslim Jat —who were granted reservation as BC (C) in Haryana will be eligible for the EWS quota till their ongoing court case for Backward Class status is decided. Family for this purpose will include the person who seeks benefit of reservation, his/her parents, spouse and children and siblings below the age of 18 years. The income will include that from all sources — salary, agriculture, business and profession and it will be for the financial year prior to the year of application. Also, persons whose family owns or possesses any of the following assets will be excluded from being identified as EWS: 5 acres of agricultural land and above, residential flat of 1,000 square feet and above, residential plot of 100 square yards and above in notified municipalities, residential plot of 200 square yards and above in areas other than the notified municipalities and any immovable property worth more than Rs 1 crore. Jaipur, February 13 The Rajasthan Assembly today passed a Bill providing 5 per cent quota in government jobs and educational institutes to Gurjars and four other communities protesting for it for the past six days. The Rajasthan Backward Classes (Reservation of Seats in Educational Institutes in the State and of Appointments and Posts in Service under the State) Amendment Bill, 2019, was moved by PWD Minister BD Kalla. It seeks to increase backward classes’ quota from 21 per cent to 26, with a 5 per cent quota for Gurjar, Raika, Gadariya, Rebari and Banjara communities. The minister said these communities would be provided reservation under the Most Backward Classes STIR TO CONTINUE Gurjar Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti patron Col KS Bainsla rejected the government’s offer. “Nothing substantial has been done. The agitation will continue till 5% quota notification is out. No one has approached us on the sixth day of our sit-in.” (MBC) category. The Vidhan Sabha adopted a resolution appealing to the Centre for a constitutional amendment, as done in the case of 10 per cent EWS quota, to pave the way for the MBC reservation. The ruling Congress also sought the BJP’s support so the amended Bill could be included in the Ninth Schedule to save it from being challenged in courts. — OC Automatic car braking in 40 countries Folk arts museum turned into office India, US, China not part of deal that requires sensors fitted in vehicles Punjab Arts Council programme director hits wrong note, move draws flak Geneva, February 13 Forty countries led by Japan and the European Union — but not India, the US or China — have agreed to require new cars and light commercial vehicles to be equipped with automated braking systems starting as soon as next year, a UN agency has said. The regulation will require all vehicles sold to come equipped with the technology by which sensors monitor how close a pedestrian or object might be. The system can trigger the brakes automatically if a collision is deemed imminent and if the driver doesn’t appear set to respond in time. The United States, China and India are members of the UN forum that adopted the new regulations. However, they did not take part in HOW THE SYSTEM WILL WORK ■ The system can trigger the brakes automatically if a collision is deemed imminent and if the driver doesn’t appear set to respond in time. ■ Measure will apply to vehicles at “low speeds”: 60 km per hour or less, and only affects new cars — so vehicle owners won’t be required to retrofit vehicles already on roads ■ Wary that the regulations might be seen as a step toward giving artificial intelligence precedence over humans, the draft said: A driver can take control and override these automated braking systems at any time, such as through “a steering action or an accelerator kick-down” ISTOCK the negotiations because they want to ensure that their national regulations keep precedence over UN rules in the auto industry. In 2016, 20 automakers reached an agreement with the US government to put automatic emergency braking on all new vehicles by September of 2022, but compliance is voluntary. The requirement will start taking effect next year first in Japan, where 4 million cars and light commercial vehicles were sold in 2018, said Jean Rodriguez, the spokesman for the agency, called United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). The European Union and some of its closest neighbours are expected to follow suit in 2022. The UNECE says the countries that agreed to the deal want to be more proactive in fighting roadway accidents, particularly in urban settings where obstacles like pedestrians, scooters, bicycles and other cars in close proximity abound. —AP Sarika Sharma Tribune News Service Chandigarh, February 13 MS Randhawa’s dream of a museum for performing arts has been literally dumped. The hall that housed the memorabilia of several prominent Punjabi artistes of yore has been turned into her office by singer Sukhminder Kaur Brar alias Sukhi Brar, who was recently made programme director of the Punjab Arts Council. According to sources, Brar came to the Council at Punjab Kala Bhawan here last Saturday, opened the door of Sangeetshala, Punjab’s only museum for folk instruments, and turned it into her office. She also purchased furniture worth Rs 70,000 “without prior approval” and has asked the parishad to The museum-turned-office of Arts Council programme director. MINISTER RUBBISHES SUKHI BRAR’S CLAIM ■ Punjab Arts Council programme director Sukhi Brar claimed the orders were given by the minister (Council falls under Minister for Culture and Tourism Navjot Singh Sidhu) and that his PA accompanied her. She said the hall was lying locked and unused and she did not see anything wrong in putting it to use ■ Sidhu, however, rubbished her claim, saying he had not given permission to anybody to turn the museum into an office. “It is absolutely rubbish that my PA accompanied her,” he added reimburse the amount. Randhawa, an avid promoter of culture, was keen on a museum for performing arts and is believed to have begun collecting memorabilia around 1979. The collection included Surinder Kaur’s ghungroos, Yamla Jatt’s tumbi, Amar Singh Shaunki’s dadh and sarangi, algozas of Beli Ram, Didar Singh Ratainda’s sarangi and Gurdas Maan’s first dafli. It is said that Randhawa had personally met the artistes and asked them to donate musical instruments. The portraits of major artistes adorned the walls of the Sangeetshala. It is said that Prof Rajpal Singh, former general secretary of the Council, had given Sangeetshala its present form. continued on page 7
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