|NEWS TO SHIPS BY NEWS ACCESS INDIA – THURSDAY, JUNE 21, 2018
Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian has decided to quit the job, with close to a year of his tenure remaining, and return to the US on account of “pressing family commitments”.
The renowned economist was appointed the CEA on October 16, 2014, for a three-year term and was given an extension last year.
In a Facebook post “Thank You Arvind”, Union Minister Arun Jaitley said Subramanian “informed me that he would like to go back to the US on account of pressing family commitments. His reasons were personal, but extremely important for him. He left me with no option, but to agree with him”.
Thanking Jaitley for his “generous words”, Subramanian said, “This is the best job I have ever had and probably ever will. My departure is entirely for personal reasons.”
Last August, the then NITI Aayog vice-chairman Arvind Panagariya had quit nearly two years before his term was to end.
Taking a dig at the government’s style of functioning, Congress president Rahul Gandhi said that while the brightest people are quitting, the former finance minister is breaking the news on Facebook. “Ex? FM is locked in his room, breaking news on FaceBook. BJP Treasurer has the keys to the Indian Economy. The brightest flee the sinking ship, as the “invisible hand” of the RSS steers it onto the rocks. Meanwhile, Captain DeMo is fast asleep. It’s crazy out there !” tweeted Gandhi.
A day after the BJP’s points-man for Jammu and Kashmir — general secretary Ram Madhav — abruptly announced his party’s break-up with the PDP, surprising state leaders and leading to a flurry of speculations, on Wednesday he went on an overdrive to dispel notions while spelling the party-led Centre’s “four-pronged approach” for the strife-torn Valley.
“There will be no mercy for terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir,” he said. Dealing with Over Ground Workers (OGWs) through legal means, engaging with all stakeholders, including the Hurriyat, and promoting development being the other three points.
It’s another thing though that these four points happened to be the same that he, as the architect of the BJP-PDP alliance three years back, claimed would lead to normalcy in the state in “six months’ time”.
Yesterday he again predicted a marked difference in the situation in a couple of months with the help of this four-pronged approach under the Governor’s rule. He also dismissed apprehensions that with Mehbooba out of the way, the Centre will follow what is now being called a “muscular” approach.
“We have not abandoned Kashmir, we have sacrificed the government for betterment of people and the larger national interest,” is the crux of what he told different meldia amid criticism over the BJP sidestepping its responsibilities as a partner in the state for the “increase in radicalisation and extremism”.
The state was placed under Governor’s rule for the fourth time in the last decade Wednesday after President Ram Nath Kovind approved the imposition of Governor’s rule.
B.V.R. Subrahmanyam, the IAS officer overseeing Chhattisgarh police’s offensive against Maoists, was on Wednesday appointed chief secretary of the state in what is being seen as a signal that the Centre will carry forward its “iron-fist policy” in the Valley.
Days after Congress leader Digvijaya Singh accused RSS of promoting terrorism, the BJP on Wednesday came down heavily upon him and demanded his sacking from the party. BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra criticised the senior Congress leader for “pointing finger at millions of Hindus, denigrating them and calling them terrorists”.
“We demand Congress leader Digvijay Singh should be sacked from the Party. You (Digvijay Singh) pointed finger at millions of Hindus, denigrated them & called them terrorists. Why do you take Hindus for granted Rahul Gandhi?”
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan too condemned Singh’s statement. “I don’t understand why Digvijay Singh always has Hindu terrorism on his mind? Using the name of saffron terror our country’s traditions are being defamed. Does Rahul Gandhi agree to this? If not, then he must ask Singh to leave Congress and if he doesn’t agree he should say so,” he said.
“Jitne bhi Hindu dharma wale aatankwadi pakde gaye hai sab Sangh ke karyakarta rahe hai (All Hindu terrorists caught so far have been RSS members in the past),’’ the Congress leader had said in Jhabua on Sunday. “Nathu Ram Godse who killed Mahatma Gandhi was also part of RSS. This ideology spreads hate. Hate leads to violence and violence leads to terrorism,’’ he told reporters. Recently, Digvijaya had claimed that he has always spoken about Sanghi terrorism and not Hindu terrorism.
The amount India spends on public health per capita every year is Rs 1,112. At 1.02% of its GDP – a figure which remained almost unchanged in nine years since 2009 – India’s public health expenditure is amongst the lowest in the world, lower than most low-income countries which spend 1.4% of their GDP on health, according to the National Health Profile, 2018, released by union minister for health and family welfare, J P Nadda, on June 19, 2018.
Sri Lanka spends about four times as much as India per capita on health, and Indonesia more than twice. The equivalent proportion of GDP spent on health in the Maldives is 9.4%, in Sri Lanka 1.6%, in Bhutan 2.5% and in Thailand 2.9%.
Bowing to pressure from anxious allies, President Donald Trump signed an executive order Wednesday ending the process of separating children from families after they are detained crossing the US border illegally.
It was a dramatic turnaround for Trump, who has been insisting, wrongly, that his administration had no choice but to separate families apprehended at the border because of federal law and a court decision.
Donald Trump hugged the American flag after an immigration speech in Washington DC. The US President had railed against illegal immigration before his stunt.
The news in recent days has been dominated by searing images of children held in cages at border facilities, as well as audio recordings of young children crying for their parents — images that have sparked fury, question of morality and concern from Republicans about a negative impact on their races in November’s midterm elections.
Until Wednesday, the president, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and other officials had repeatedly argued the only way to end the practice was for Congress to pass new legislation, while Democrats said he could do it with his signature alone. That’s what he did on Wednesday.
“We’re going to have strong, very strong borders, but we’re going to keep the families together,” said Trump who said he didn’t like the “sight” or “feeling” of children separated from their parents.
Prime Minister Theresa May won a crucial Brexit vote in Parliament on Wednesday, keeping her deeply divided government’s plans to end Britain’s more than 40 years of partnership with the European Union on track.
After pro-EU Conservative lawmaker Dominic Grieve said he would support the government’s proposal for a “meaningful vote” in parliament on any Brexit deal, a potential rebellion that could have undermined May’s authority looked was averted.
May adopted a high-risk strategy by facing off with rebels in her Conservative Party, and it paid off. One lawmaker said May had no option but to take them on or risk their rebellion growing as she cuts ties with the European Union.
Canadian Parliament has passed a “historic” Bill legalising recreational use of marijuana nationwide, becoming second country to do so after Uruguay. Canadians will be able to buy and consume cannabis legally as early as September. Adults will be able to carry, share up to 30 grams of marijuana in public. They also will be allowed to cultivate up to four plants. However, stringent rules will still govern its purchase and use.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s estranged wife Jashodaben on Wednesday expressed shock over Madhya Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel’s statement in a leading Gujarati daily that Modi was unmarried.
“I am surprised over Anandiben telling the press that Narendra bhai was not married (to her). He has himself mentioned in his declaration while filing papers for Lok Sabha elections in 2014 that he is married and mentioned my name too,” Jashodaben read out a statement in a video shot from her brother Ashok Modi’s mobile phone. “It is very unbecoming of a well-educated woman (Anandiben, Gujarat ex-CM) to speak like this of a teacher (Jashodaben). Not only this, her conduct has tarnished the image of the Prime Minister. He is very respectable for me, he is Ram for me.”
A peak tax rate of 28 per cent plus states levying some amount of local sales tax or the VAT on petrol and diesel is likely to be the tax structure when the two fuels are covered under the GST regime, a top govt official said on Wednesday.
The peak GST rate plus the VAT will be equal to the present tax incidence, which is made up of excise duty, levied by the central govt, and the VAT charged by the states.
But before the two fuels are put under the GST, the Centre has to decide if it is willing to let go the Rs 20,000 crore input tax credit it now pockets by keeping petrol, diesel, natural gas, jet fuel and crude oil out of the GST regime.
The timing of including petro products in the GST will be a political call which the Centre and the states will have to take collectively, the official said.
The Economic Offences Wing of Pune police on Wednesday arrested six people, including the serving and a former CMD of the Bank of Maharashtra in a cheating case lodged against city-based real estate developer D S Kulkarni and his wife.
These bank officials did not stick to the RBI guidelines and did not verify if the loan amount was being used only for the project for which it had been sought, the EOW told a local court while seeking their custody.
The bank’s present Chairman and Managing Director Ravindra Marathe, Executive Director Rajendra Gupta, Zonal Manager Nityanand Deshpande, bank’s former CMD Sushil Muhnot, were arrested on Wednesday. Kulkarni’s CA Sunil Ghatpande and vice president Rajiv Newaskar of the engineering department of D S Kulkarni Developers Ltd were also apprehended.
Alleging harassment by an officer at a passport office over her marriage to a Muslim man, a woman from Lucknow has requested External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj for justice. The woman, Tanvi Seth, alleged that an officer named Vikas Mishra questioned her marital status as she has not changed her surname. In a complaint letter, posted on Twitter, Seth alleged that when she told the officer that changing her surname or not is her personal choice, he told her that it was her duty to change surname as “every girl does that.”
“@SushmaSwaraj hello ma’am I type this tweet with immense faith in justice and in you and ironically with a lot of anger / hurt and agony in my heart because of the way I was treated at the Lucknow passport office at Ratan Square by Mr. Vikas Mishra the reason because I married a Muslim and not changed my name ever. He spoke to me very rudely and was loud enough for others to hear while discussing my case. I have never felt so harassed ever before. The other workers at the office acknowledged his rude demeanor,” tweeted Seth.
“@SushmaSwaraj Ma’am I never ever imagined that in a place like passport office we would have a people who are moral policing the citizens. He didn’t just put my passport on hold he even put my husband’s @5220manas passport on hold. This is clear grudge. I was shocked at this behaviour.
Swami Akhileshwaranand Giri, chairman of the executive council of MP Gausamvardhan Board, has proposed that Madhya Pradesh should become the first state to have a separate ministry devoted to the conservation and welfare of cows, contending that this will rid it of the tag of “animal”.
According to Giri, recently given a Cabinet minister status, when cow is the only species worshiped and called “gaumata” (mother cow) in India, why should its welfare be the subject of the Animal Husbandry Department, which deals with other animals such as pigs, buffaloes, poultry and lambs. “We apply tilak only to cows. I always say ‘gaumata ka dehavsan ho gaya’, unlike Animal Husbandry Department officials who talk of its death like any other animal’s because they deal with all other animals. “If a separate ministry is constituted, it can deal sensitively with the subject.”
The Income Tax department is probing the acquisition of the current family residence of Chanda Kochhar, the CEO and MD of ICICI Bank, in South Mumbai by her husband Deepak Kochhar in a complex transaction involving firms linked to Videocon Group.
The link between Videocon and the residence of the Kochhars reinforces questions of propriety and conflict of interest that have dogged Chanda Kochhar and are now the subject of an “independent” probe announced by the ICICI Bank. On Monday, the bank said she will be on leave until the probe is completed.
The tax department is now said to be probing the transaction involving the acquisition of the flat at 45, CCI Chambers CHS Limited — it is in the Churchgate area opposite the Cricket Club of India.
Indians are travelling more and their spending is not limited to only overseas travel. Domestic luxury and branded hotels are registering an increase in the share of revenue coming through domestic leisure travellers. These travellers are not only staying at top-end hotels but also spending a significant amount of money at the hotel during their stay.
Chinmai Sharma, chief revenue officer at Taj Hotels, told Business Standard that the domestic leisure travel business was the fastest growing category in the hospitality chain. The company’s leisure segment (domestic and international) is growing at 10-11 per cent. Within this, however, the growth rate of domestic leisure travel is higher. “Around three years ago, international leisure travellers accounted for nearly 70 per cent of our leisure business and the rest came from domestic tourists. The share is now equally split,” said Sharma.
According to Taj Hotels, spends of Indian leisure travellers during their hotel stay is comparable, if not higher, to foreign guests on food and beverages, spa, retail, among others.
Diego Costa’s third goal in two matches at the World Cup has lifted Spain to a 1-0 win over a stubborn Iran side Wednesday. The win brought Spain level on points with Portugal in Group B after Cristiano Ronaldo and his teammates defeated Morocco on the same score line. Portugal and Spain drew 3-3 in their tournament opener last week. Iran had earlier beaten Morocco 1-0.
After a frustrating first half during which Spain could not find an edge to get past Iran well-organized defense, Costa broke the deadlock in the 54th minute after being set up by Andres Iniesta.
Needing a goal, Iran changed strategy and it nearly paid off when Saeid Ezatolahi thought he had leveled but his goal was ruled out after the use of VAR.
In the 3rd match yesterday, star player Luiz Suarez hit a fine header as he marked his 100th international appearance with a goal as Uruguay beat Saudi Arabia 1-0. Suarez scored his 52nd goal for Uruguay as his team dominated the early proceedings of the game. Saudi Arabia didn’t have any clear-cut chances but they played well after going behind in the 23rd minute.
Rohit Sharma passed the fitness test, the Yo-Yo test, at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bangalore which will allow him to make the trip to UK to face Ireland and England in limited over matches. At the same time, he took a shot at doubters and detractors for questioning his commitment to clearing the test.
In a tweet he wrote, “Dear… it’s no ones business how & where I spend my time. I’m entitled to have time off as long as I follow protocol. Let’s debate some real news shall we…” in response to his social media post where he was in Russia for the FIFA World Cup as part of a promotional activity.
Additionally, the opener hit back at some sections of the media who claimed he had initially failed the test. As per those reports, Rohit had appeared for the test first on June 15 but failed to clear the test. Subsequently, he was given another chance on Tuesday for which he didn’t show up. Apparently on third attempt, on Wednesday, Rohit managed to pass the difficult test which is now mandatory for selection. He wrote, in the tweet, on that regard, “… to a few channels, I had just 1 chance to clear my yo-yo that was today. Verification before reporting is always a good idea.”
Rohit would be part of the India squad which will play two T20Is against Ireland followed by three T20Is and three ODIs against England.
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Sometimes life is risking everything for a dream no one can see, but you. – Unknown
A Swiss guy, looking for directions, pulls up at a bus stop where two Englishmen are waiting.
“Entschuldigung, koennen Sie Deutsch sprechen?” he says.
The two Englishmen just stare at him.
“Excusez-moi, parlez vous Francais?”
The two continue to stare.
“Hablan ustedes Espanol?”
The Swiss guy drives off, extremely disgusted.
The first Englishman turns to the second and says, “Maybe we should learn a foreign language….”
“Why?” says the other, “That bloke knew four languages, and it didn’t do him any good.”
Newsletter 21st June, 2018
June 21, 2018