14082020-TTB-01.qxd 8/13/2020 11:56 PM Page 1 13 chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | jammu | srinagar | vol.140 no.225 | 12 pages | ~5.00 | regd.no.chd/0006/2018-2020 established in 1881 NZ BATTLES FRESH VIRUS CASES AS POLLS NEAR WORLD /thetribunechd EICHER ARM ACQUIRES VOLVO INDIA BUS BIZ FOR ~100 CR BUSINESS INDIAN AID TO DWARF CHINESE BRIDGE IN MALDIVES BACK PAGE /thetribunechd www.tribuneindia.com Pranab in deep coma: Doctors NEW DELHI: The condition of for- mer President Pranab Mukherjee remains unchanged and he is “deeply comatose,” the Army’s Research and Referral Hospital said on Thursday. Doctors attending on him said he continued to be on ventilator support. — PTI SC relief for BS-IV vehicle owners NEWDELHI: In a big relief to thou- sands of consumers, the Supreme Court on Thursday allowed registration of BS-IV vehicles, which were purchased till March 31 but could not be registered due to the lockdown before the March 31 deadline. — IANS Pak court suspends jail term of 2 JuD men LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Thursday suspended a one-year jail sentence and ordered release of two Jamaatud-Dawah leaders and aides of Hafiz Saeed, the mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai attack, in a terror-financing case. — PTI Gehlot to seek trust vote New Delhi, August 13 Ahead of the Rajasthan Assembly session in Jaipur tomorrow, the Congress today put up a united face with Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot saying he would bring a motion of confidence in the House and prove the majority of his government. The Congress may bring the motion as early as tomorrow. Gehlot announced the decision at a meeting of the Congress Legislature Party attended this evening by former rebel Sachin Pilot and 18 other dissidents, who have returned to the party fold. The Congress announcement, made hours after the BJP said it would bring a motion of no confidence, was seen as a move to counter the Opposition strategy. CM Gehlot and former Deputy CM Pilot earlier shook hands at the former’s residence before attending the CLP meeting, where the CM asked everyone to “forgive and forget” and promised resolution of everyone’s griev- Tribune News Service SUSPENSION OF 2 REBELS REVOKED CM Ashok Gehlot and Sachin Pilot flash the victory sign in Jaipur. PTI ‘SHORTCUTS WON’T DO’ ❝ This is New India's new governance mode... Everyone has now realised that shortcuts are not acceptable. Narendra Modi, PRIME MINISTER NEW ASSESSMENT NORMS ■ A central computer will pick tax returns for scrutiny and allot these randomly to officers in any city across India ■ This scrutiny will then be reviewed by officers at another location ■ Taxpayer can respond to notices electronically without visiting any tax office for further reforms," the PM said while pointing out that earlier regimes would label changes made under pressure as reforms and they Democratic nominees Joe Biden and Kamala Harris at a campaign. REUTERS Biden’s ‘team of 6’ to woo Indian diaspora Sandeep Dikshit Tribune News Service The Rajasthan High Court has posted for hearing on Friday the petitions filed by BJP MLA Madan Dilawar and the BSP challenging the merger of six MLAs with the Congress. The six MLAs contested and won the 2018 Assembly poll on BSP ticket, and defected to the Congress in September 2019. ances. AICC general secretary KC Venugopal said the CLP meeting went well and the “Congress was united and determined to stall BJP’s designs in the House session where the CM will bring a motion of confidence”. The numbers are stacked favourably for the Congress, which has 107 MLAs (including six BSP MLAs who “merged” would become an end to themselves. "We have not done just one reform. There have been consistent efforts over the last few years," said the PM while pointing to the junking of 1,500 outdated laws, a huge improvement in the ease of doing business and major changes in laws and rules. "Seeing this commitment, the trust of foreign investors has increased, leading to record inflow of foreign direct investment (FDI) even during the Covid pandemic," he said. He said the changes were due to four reasons: Policydriven governance, narrowing of grey areas of discretion, limiting human interface by use of technology, and awarding efficiency in bureaucracy. The earlier system enabled the flourishing of "black and white" (money) because it was complex. The new GST slab system has removed the need for unnecessarily providing several documents; schemes like "Vivad Se Vishwas" have helped settle around 3 lakh cases out of court; and the tax system is being now made seamless, painless and faceless. NUMBERS STACKED IN CONG’S FAVOUR CONG* CONG+ IND** 107 5 13 BJP 72 BJP+ 3 MAGIC NUMBER 101/200 *Includes 6 of BSP (merged with Cong) **Independents: 13 (10 backing Cong) ■ Democratic candidate Joe Biden to kick off battle for Indian diaspora votes on I-Day ■ The ‘team of 6’ includes four Indian-Americans, three of them women ■ The four are Seema Sadanandan, Sonal Shah, Nisha Biswal and Richard Varma will play a prominent role in Biden’s foreign policy pitch during the elections. continued on back page edit: lessons from the us Kerala court frames charges against Franco in rape case Pb Class XII toppers to get ~5,100 each on I-Day, 335 on list Kottayam (Kerala), August 13 A local court today framed charges against former Bishop of Jalandhar Diocese Franco Mulakkal in a case relating to alleged rape of a nun in Kerala. The Additional Sessions Court Judge read out to Mulakkal the charges under various sections of the IPC, including rape, as it commenced trial proceedings in the case. The accused denied the charges. The case was posted for September 16 for the victim’s examination. Mulakkal has been charged under IPC Sections 342 Tribune News Service There is more bad news for cotton farmers as a Haryana Agricultural University team observed aphid and whitefly infestation during first week of August in cotton and other crops in the region. Waterlogged cotton crop at Sulkhani village in Hisar. Villages in the Julana region of Jind district too are in trouble because of their waterlogged cotton fields. An official said cotton crop on 5,000 to 6,000 acres had got destroyed in Hisar district, but the damage too paddy crop was not severe. Franco Mulakkal (wrongful confinement), 377 (unnatural sex), 376 (c)(a) (sexual intercourse by person in authority), 376(2)(k) (sexual intercourse by exhorting authority) and 506 (criminal intimidation). Last week, Mulakkal was granted bail with stringent conditions. — PTI Kotkapura firing: SIT chargesheets 2 police officials Faridkot, August 13 The special investigation team (SIT) probing the 2015 Kotkapura firing case today submitted a charge-sheet in the court of Judicial Magistrate (Class I) against former SHO Gurdeep Singh Pandher and SP Baljeet Singh, accusing them of tampering with evidence. Adding Sections 409 (criminal breach of trust) and 467 (forgery) of the Indian Penal Code to the FIR, the SIT accused the two of fabricating evidence and framing innocent persons. The probe team alleged the officials tried to destroy evidence, manipulated facts and did not act on the medico-legal reports of those injured in the firing. INSIDE Washington, August 13 In a move that could help Indian IT professionals and those working in the healthcare sector, the Trump administration has announced certain exemptions to H-1B and L-1 travel ban for those continuing employment with the same employer. The exemptions also include family members of the H-1B, L-1 and certain categories of J1 visas. Indian techies, health professionals to benefit President Donald Trump, in his June proclamation, had banned entry into the US of workers in several key nonimmigrant visa categories, including the H-1B, arguing that they ate into American jobs amid the pandemic. The H-1B visa is a nonimmigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in speciality occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise. — PTI 70.7%recover;3crN95 masks given to states A contingent of TN Disaster Response Force during full-dress rehearsal for Independence Day in Chennai. PTI WHITEFLY THREAT TOO fields are still covered by 2 feet of water,” he said. Similarly, heavy rains and waterlogging have destroyed kharif crops in some other parts of the state. In Bhiwani, rainwater has affected crops in Mundhal and Bawani Khera villages. I-DAY LAUNCH Tribune News Service Deepender Deswal Tribune News Service with the party last year) in the 200-member Assembly. The BJP has 72 MLAs and its ally RLP has three. Despite low numbers, Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly Gulab Chand Kataria today said, “We will bring a motion of no confidence against the Gehlot government.” The decision was taken at the BJP Legislature Party meet. — TNS New Delhi, August 13 Having announced Kamala Harris his running mate, Democratic candidate Joe Biden will begin his battle with incumbent Donald Trump for the Indian-American votes with a special message on India’s Independence Day. Of special interest will be the six Democrats who will feature with him. They include four Indian-Americans, three of them women. It is expected that these six Full-dress rehearsal Crop in waterlogged areas of Hisar, Bhiwani, Jind dists totally destroyed but that too got damaged. Besides cotton, sugarcane, bajra, guar, and paddy have been destroyed on 2,400 acres under cultivation in the village. Though the district administration has been trying to drain out water by installing pumps, The Congress on Thursday revoked the suspension of Bhanwarlal Sharma and Vishvendra Singh, two MLAs who had rebelled against the Ashok Gehlot government. They were suspended from the party’s primary membership last month over their alleged involvement in a “conspiracy” to topple the government in the state. BSP MERGER: RAJASTHAN HIGH COURT TO RESUME HEARING TODAY Cotton on 50K acres damaged in Hry Hisar, August 13 Cotton crop on nearly 50,000 acres in the state has been damaged due to waterlogging after the recent rains. Reports from farmers and officials indicate that the crop on nearly 10,000 acres has completely perished. The crop is totally destroyed in the flooded areas of Hisar, Bhiwani and Jind districts, known as the cotton belt of Haryana. The rainwater has been standing in the fields for the last couple of weeks. Naresh Kumar, sarpanch of Bhatol Jatan village, said: “After the cotton crop perished, farmers sowed paddy Trump allows H-1B, travel ban exemptions Announcement comes after BJP decides on no-confidence motion Tax assessment goes faceless, PM Modi unveils IT charter New Delhi, August 13 Prime Minister Narendra Modi today launched a platform to provide faceless assessment and appeal in income tax cases, which, he said, was part of the process to overhaul various colonial-era tax laws. "The previous system, instead of expanding the taxpayer base, was harassing honest businessmen, workers and those providing employment," observed the PM while also launching the taxpayers' charter, first announced by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman during her Budget speech. The PM said after the Independence, the coercive and colonial system of tax collection was only tinkered with. "But largely, the system and the character remained the same. As a result, the taxpayer, who is a strong pillar of national development, was put in dock," he said. “Soch and approach dono badal gayi (Thinking and approach, both have changed). Reforms should be policy-based, holistic and one reform should form the basis friday, august 14,2020 Faridkot, August 13 The Punjab School Education Board has released a list of 335 students who will be given Rs 5,100 each by Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh on Independence Day for scoring more than 98 per cent marks in Class XII board exams. Among the 11 toppers with 100 per cent marks, nine are girls. Seven of these students are from Faridkot district and two each from Muktsar and Fazilka. New Delhi, August 13 Even as Covid-19 cases climbed to 23,96,637 today with record 66,999 new cases, the country posted significant improvement in recoveries, taking the total number of discharged patients to 70.77 per cent of the cumulative cases. The Health Ministry claimed the Centre had distributed over 3 crore N95 masks, 1.28 crore personal protective equipment and 10 crore hydroxychloroquine tablets to states. Moreover, 22,533 “Made in India” ventilators had also been delivered to states, the ministry said. Of the 23.96 lakh Covid cases in India, 16,95,982 have recovered. The recoveries improved today with a record 56,383 patients being discharged in a day. “The total recovered Covid19 patients have touched nearly 17 lakh (16,95,982) today. This has been made possible due to concerted efforts of the Centre and states, and the support of frontline workers. Death rate from Covid also fell further to 1.96 per cent with the toll standing at 47,033 after 942 deaths in a day. “Record recoveries have ensured that the actual case- COVID-19CASES INDIA COUNT RECOVERED 16,95,982 FRESH FATALITIES 942 TOTAL DEATHS 47,033 23,96,637 TOTAL RECOVERED DEATHS WORLD 2,09,47,475 1,38,05,475 7,49,946 TEMPLE TRUST CHIEF TESTS +VE, WAS ON DAIS WITH PM ■ Ram Temple trust head Mahant Nritya Gopal Das (80), tested positive for Covid-19 on Thursday and was rushed to the Medanta hospital in Gurgaon ■ Das shared the dais with PM Modi, UP CM Yogi Adityanath and Governor Anandiben Patel at the groundbreaking ceremony for Ram Temple on August 5 load of the country (active cases) has gone down to 27.27 per cent of the total positive cases. The recoveries now exceed active cases (6,53,622) by more than 10 lakh,” Health Ministry officials said. Improved recoveries are linked to higher testing with the country conducting a record 8,30,391 tests today taking the total Covid tests so far to 2.68 crore. J&K ‘encounter’probe begins, DNA samplesof families taken Tribune News Service Srinagar, August 13 The J&K Police have formally launched an investigation into the “staged encounter” of three youths in Shopian last month by sending a special team to Rajouri to probe the allegations. The authorities collected DNA samples of the relatives of the three missing Rajouri labourers this evening. IGP (Kashmir Range) Vijay Kumar said a police team had left for Rajouri to complete the “legal formalities” after missing person’s reports were filed by the families at the Peru police post. The July 18 gunfight has LINK WITH MILITANTS UNDER SCRUTINY is another ❝ Therecase,i.e.toprobe aspect to whether youths were in contact with ultras. We’ll examine their call details Vijay Kumar, IGP (KASHMIR RANGE) been under a cloud ever since the families of the three — identified as Abrar Ahmad, 17; his brother-in-law Abrar Ahmad, 25; and cousin Imtiyaz Ahmad, 19, all residents of Dharsakri — approached the police, fearing a “staged encounter” at Ashmipora, Shopian. The families claimed the pictures of three men were of their wards. The IGP said the DNA samples would be matched to ascertain the identity of those killed. “We have the DNA samples of the three terrorists killed in Shopian. We will take the samples of the families and match them in the central forensic laboratory,” said Kumar in Srinagar. The IGP said they would also investigate if the three had links with local militants. The Army is also probing the incident. The families have been demanding a judicial probe into the encounter.
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