The Hindu Important Articles 20 November 2018

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# Govt., RBI call truce after a marathon board meeting

Expert panel to review economic capital framework for future earnings
The tension between the government and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) appeared to have defused for the time being with both agreeing to settle for a middle ground at the end of an over nine-hour board meeting on Monday.

The most contentious issue between the central bank and the Finance Ministry was the RBI’s capital. Now, while the RBI has agreed to set up an expert committee on the economic capital framework (ECF), its mandate is restricted to future earnings and not the existing reserves, sources privy to the board deliberations told The Hindu .

“The board decided to constitute an expert committee to examine the ECF, the membership and terms of reference of which will be jointly determined by the Government of India and the RBI,” the central bank said in a statement.

Detailed presentations

Sources indicate there were detailed presentations by the RBI on economic capital as well as other issues such as the prompt corrective action (PCA) framework.

On the PCA, the Board for Financial Supervision (BFS) of the RBI will review the norms and take a call if some of the parameters like net non-performing asset (NPA) ratio could be relaxed so that some of the banks come out of the PCA. There are 11 public sector banks out of 21 that are on the PCA.

The BFS consists of the Governor, four Deputy Governors and a few other board members. Another significant decision was relief to micro, small and medium enterprises — the sector which is badly hit by the twin blows of demonetisation and patchy implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST).

# Ganja case convict tries to end life at court

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He was sentenced to undergo imprisonment for 14 years
A 30-year-old man allegedly tried to end his life by slitting his throat, after he was sentenced to 14 years jail in a ganja smuggling case, on the Metropolitan Sessions Court premises here on Monday.

The accused has been admitted to KGH and his condition is stated to be critical. The convict, Rajanna Appala Naidu, hailing from M.K. Patnam area in Visakhapatnam Agency, along with seven others, was caught shifting 292 kg of ganja in a vehicle, in Kothakota police station limits in 2016.

Metropolitan Session Judge S. Nagarjuna convicted Naidu and five others to undergo 14 years imprisonment. The judge also also slapped a fine of Rs. 1 lakh on each of them.

II Town Inspector G.V. Ramana, the Investigation Officer, who was at the court during the incident, said after his conviction, Naidu suddenly fell down and police saw Naidu lying in pool of blood as he slit his throat.

On bail

“The convict was on bail at present. Since he has been appearing for trials, he might have expected that he could be convicted and while coming to court, he carried a small knife in his pocket.

After pronouncement of his conviction, he injured himself with the knife”, said Mr. Ramana.

# If you dump garbage, be ready to go to court

Though the fine is not more than Rs. 500, police hope the legal process will act as a deterrent
If the beat policeman catches you dumping garbage on the roads, be prepared to go to the court to battle charges of “spreading disease”. In the past 10 days, as many as 100 cases have been booked against residents who were found dumping garbage.

Policemen have caught these “offenders” red-handed, hauled them to the police stations, and charged them under Section 269 (Negligent act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life) and Section 283 (Danger or obstruction in public way or line of navigation) of the IPC.

Rahul Kumar Shahapurwad, Deputy Commissioner of Police for East Division, where the cases have been filed, said they were undertaking a special drive to create awareness and deter people.

The drive has covered areas such as Banasawadi, K.G. Halli, D.J. Halli, Bharati Nagar and Pulakeshinagar, which have large number of commercial establishments and which generate a lot of garbage compared to residential areas.

“Though civic officials have given necessary directions to maintain cleanliness, they continue to dump garbage. Many shopkeepers dump garbage in the night to avoid attention and that is when we catch them,” said Mr. Shahapurwad.

A majority of the offenders booked are employees of commercial establishments, who have been instructed by their employers to dispose garbage in public.

While this is an unfortunate practice, a senior official who is a part of the drive said employers can also be hauled up and perhaps even be named in the case if the employee confesses to having dumped garbage based on the orders of the business owner.

The fines under the sections are just between Rs. 200 and Rs. 500, depending on the discretion of the court, and in extreme cases, a punishment of six-month imprisonment can be given under the law.

Police officials said rather than the fines, deterrence comes in the form of getting entangled in legal process, which could last months. In most criminal cases, the accused have to present themselves in the court on the date of the hearing and it is common for these cases to drag on for months before the first hearing.

In its October 31 order on the garbage issues in the State, the High Court had directed the police to work out means to keep a vigil against dumping of garbage and to take action.

# NSA, Minister hampered Asthana probe: CBI officer

DIG plea in SC against transfer alleges interference, bribery
A senior CBI officer, who supervised the team probing the corruption case against the agency’s Special Director R.K. Asthana, moved the Supreme Court on Monday leveling a series of allegations involving National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, Central Vigilance Commissioner K.V. Chowdhary, Law Secretary Suresh Chandra and Union Minister of State for Coal and Mines Haribhai Parthibhai Chaudhary.

Urging the court to step in before the CBI became the ‘Centre for Bogus Investigation,’ Manish Kumar Sinha, DIG (Head of Branch), CBI, Anti-Corruption Branch, Nagpur, narrated alleged instances in which Mr. Doval seems to have stalled his team’s investigation into the FIR against Mr. Asthana and CBI officer Devender Kumar, among others. “The investigation team has been penalised/victimised because of its impartiality and diligence,” he said, seeking the quashing of his transfer.

A Bench led by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi is to hear the petition filed by the exiled CBI Director Alok Verma in which he has alleged that his removal was the work of “high functionaries” who wanted to shackle the agency’s probe into several sensitive cases.

# Dharmapuri bus burning convicts set free

Governor clears request for release of 3 AIADMK men
Three AIADMK men, serving life sentences for setting ablaze a bus in Dharmapuri resulting in the death of three girls of the Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU), were granted remission and set free from the Vellore Central Prison on Monday.

Jayalalithaa case verdict

Nedunchezhian, Ravindran and Muniappan had resorted to violence after a Special Court in Chennai sentenced former Chief Minister Jayalalithaa to one-year imprisonment in the Kodaikanal Pleasant Stay Hotel case on February 2, 2000.

Governor Banwarilal Purohit cleared the AIADMK government’s recommendation to release them prematurely. The Governor had earlier returned the file seeking remission of their life sentence for reconsideration by the government. However, the State sent back the file sticking to its stand, following which Mr. Purohit accepted the recommendation to release them.

Home Dept. issues GO

Inspector-General of Prisons R. Kanagaraj ordered their release on Monday, citing a Government Order issued by the Home Department on Sunday.

The convicts were originally awarded the death penalty by the trial court which was later upheld by the Supreme Court, but on a review petition their sentence was commuted to life imprisonment two years ago.

# Punjab CM sees Pak. hand in blast

A day after a grenade attack on a religious congregation at Adliwal village near Amritsar killed three persons, Punjab Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh said the device used was similar to the HG-84 grenade recovered from a terror module busted by the police in October.

Capt. Singh said initial investigations indicated that the grenade used was similar to those being manufactured by the Pakistan Army ordnance factory.

He ruled out that the attack was a result of discord between the Sant Nirankari Mission and traditional Sikhs.

Capt. Singh was at Adliwal to take stock of the situation.

He said the grenade indicated a high probability of the involvement of inimical forces from across the border.

# Stacked empty containers damage school building

Luckily, the incident happened during non-school hours
A compound wall and the building of the Angaragundi Government Higher Primary School in Baikampady Industrial Area were damaged after empty containers stacked adjacent to the school fell on them on Monday.

Since the incident appears to have occurred during non-school hours, school students were saved from any untoward incident.

A private company had reportedly been stacking empty containers on a vacant land adjacent to the school building. When teachers and students reached the school on Monday morning, they saw that the compound wall was damaged. On examination, it was found that stacked containers had fallen on the compound wall as well as the school building.

# Punjab CM sees Pak. hand in blast

A day after a grenade attack on a religious congregation at Adliwal village near Amritsar killed three persons, Punjab Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh said the device used was similar to the HG-84 grenade recovered from a terror module busted by the police in October.

Capt. Singh said initial investigations indicated that the grenade used was similar to those being manufactured by the Pakistan Army ordnance factory.

He ruled out that the attack was a result of discord between the Sant Nirankari Mission and traditional Sikhs.

Capt. Singh was at Adliwal to take stock of the situation.

He said the grenade indicated a high probability of the involvement of inimical forces from across the border

# Byelections to 20 seats before LS polls: CEC

Says the two cannot be clubbed
The by-elections to 20 Assembly constituencies in Tamil Nadu will take place before the Lok Sabha poll, Chief Election Commissioner O. P. Rawat said on Monday.

Asked whether the Election Commission had worked out a plan for the bypolls, Mr. Rawat told The Hindu, “Nothing has been planned. But by-elections will have to be held within six months of the vacancy. That is the law.”

Legal position

When it was pointed out that there was an expectation in certain quarters that the by-elections would be held along with the Lok Sabha poll, Mr. Rawat made it clear that they would not be clubbed with the Lok Sabha election because of the legal position. On the possibility of the stipulated period of six months getting extended, he said: “It will not get extended.”

Vacancies had arisen in 18 seats due to the Madras High Court confirming the disqualification of MLAs owing allegiance to AMMK leader T.T.V. Dhinakaran.

# ‘Shah benefited from Sohrabuddin case’

CBI officer deposes on fake encounter
Amitabh Thakur, former Superintendent of Police in the CBI, Gandhinagar, and chief investigating officer in the alleged fake encounter of Sohrabuddin Sheikh in November 2005, said then Gujarat Home Minister Amit Shah had benefited politically and monetarily from the case. Mr Thakur was deposing before a CBI court here on Monday.

Apart from Mr Shah, former Deputy Inspector-General of the Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) D.G. Vanzara, former Superintendent of Police (Udaipur) Dinesh M.N., former Superintendent of Police (Ahmedabad) Rajkumar Pandiyan, and former Deputy Commissioner of Police (Ahmedabad) Abhay Chudasama had benefited politically, Mr. Thakur said.

He said Mr. Shah benefited financially as he was paid Rs. 70 lakh by the Patel brothers, owners of Popular Builders in Ahmedabad.

Warning given

They were warned that if they did not pay the money, there would be dire consequences. He said Mr. Vanzara benefited monetarily as well, as he was paid Rs. 60 lakhs by the Patel brothers.

# Sabarimala temple board seeks time

‘Cannot ensure security for women’
The Travancore Devaswom Board on Monday moved the Supreme Court saying that about 1,000 women have registered their names to visit the temple, but it could not ensure their security against the “acts of hooliganism and assault” of protesters and certain political parties in and around the Sabarimala premises.

The board, which manages the temple, sought more time to implement the September 28 judgment of the court allowing women aged between 10 and 50 to enter and worship in the hill shrine.

It said that even the ‘unprecedented’ efforts of the Kerala police to provide security to young women pilgrims, who tried to enter the temple, were overwhelmed by the protesters. The women had to be escorted back to safety, away from the threats of the protesters who are camping on the route to the temple. The women devotees were even physically impeded from undertaking the pilgrimage.

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