VISAKHAPATNAM l FRIDAY l FEBRUARY 23, 2018 l `4.00 l PAGES 14 l LATE CITY EDITION INDIA MORE CORRUPT THAN CHINA, BETTER THAN PAKISTAN Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index ranks India at 81, China at 77 and Pakistan at 117 out of 180 countries BHUTAN BEST AMONG NEIGHBOURS NEW ZEALAND BAGS FIRST PLACE While Bangladesh (ranked 143), Myanmar (130) and Sri Lanka (91) fared worse than India, Bhutan (26) got the best score among India’s neighbours. Among BRICS nations, South Africa is ranked the best (71), followed by China and India, while Brazil is at 96th and Russia at 135th ■ ■ ■ New Zealand and Denmark top the list, while Syria, South Sudan and Somalia have been ranked the lowest The index uses a scale of 0 to 100, where 0 denotes highly corrupt and 100 very clean New Zealand’s score is 89 and Somalia’s is 9 40 INDIA’S SCORE, SAME AS GHANA, MOROCCO AND TURKEY CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA ■ BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOGGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ WARANGAL ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR Khalistan activist at Trudeau event raises eyebrows JOBS FOR 3,000 ON CARDS 536 acres 3 lakh 2019 April 20, 2017 expanse of manufacturing unit cars to be manufactured per annum I-Tax dept attaches property worth L1,200 crore of Gitanjali Group located in SEZ Hyderabad ED freezes shares, deposits and luxury cars worth over L100 crore of diamond king Nirav Modi and his relative Mehul Choksi’s Gitanjali group PNB writes to Nirav seeking a concrete and implementable plan to settle the loss in the L11,400 cr Letter of Undertakings (LoU) bank rip-off ROTOMAC BOSS HELD CBI arrested Rotomac owner Vikram Kothari and his son Rahul for the default on loan repayments to the tune of L3,695 crore Kia Motors SP Concept unveiled at Auto Expo 2018 in Delhi on Feb 14 will be firm’s first car on sale in India by 2019 production activities to begin in second half of year date MoU was signed We have plans of making Kia Motors manufacturing unit in Anantapur its biggest in the world N Chandrababu Naidu, CM KIA MOTORS DOUBLES A’PUR INVESTMENT TO $2 BILLION CM says firm’s first plant in country will turn drought-hit district into automobile hub R I S H I S A B H A R W A L @Anantapur SOUTH Korean automobile giant Kia Motors on Thursday said it would raise its total investment on the manufacturing unit coming up in Anantapur district to $2 billion by 2021 — almost double its initial budget of $1.1 billion. The venture will generate employment opportunities for over 3,000 people. Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu said he had “big plans” for the automaker which celebrated its framework installation ceremony in Yerramanchi village of Penugonda mandal and wanted to make Kia’s only Indian plant the largest in the world. He evinced hope that the project would turn the drought-hit Anantapur region into a hub for automobile industries. “The Bangaluru-Hyderabad highway is going to be an industrial corridor. It is also going to connect Visakhapatnam and Chennai,” he said. The car maker’s main target group is domestic buyers, but also plans to export its vehicles. `300 cr franchisee rip-off by Gitanjali that bothered no one FRESH SEIZURES LAND CASES GO TO THE CJI FOR BIGGER BENCH AFTER FACEOFF Kia Motors which is setting up a $2 bn unit in Anantapur is in talks with the govt to start a training centre to impart manufacturing skills among locals. A look R A M A N A N D A S E N G U P TA @ New Delhi VISITING Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) were left redfaced on Thursday after Jaspal Atwal, a Khalistani activist found guilty of attempting to assassinate an Akali Dal minister in Canada in 1986, was photographed with Trudeau’s wife and with a Cabinet minister in Mumbai earlier this week. Atwal was also on the guest list of the Canadian High Commissioner’s dinner for the visiting Canadian delegation on Thursday, but the invitation was hurriedly ‘rescinded’ during the day . In what is widely seen as a snub, Trudeau, who arrived in India last Saturday, will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other senior Indian leaders only on Friday, a day before he leaves. THE PICTURE THAT Confirming that the photoSTARTED IT ALL g r a p h s o f A t w a l w i t h Trudeau’s wife Sophie as well Canadian Prime Minister as with Canadian InfrastrucJustin Trudeau’s wife ture Minister Amarjeet were Sophie was photographed taken at a Bollywood event in with Jaspal Atwal in Mumbai on February 20, Atwal Mumbai this week. Atwal told Postmedia, a Canadian meblamed “enemies” for dia major, that he had travelled circulating the photo, to India on his own on Februstressed that he travelled ary 11 and was not part of any to India on his own on official government delegaFebruary 11, and said it was tion. He also said he wasn’t unfair to raise his “criminal planning to attend the Delhi conviction” for a shooting dinner anyway since he had incident in 1986 business in Mumbai. The MEA, on the other hand, said it was unaware how Atwal had got a visa, and was investigating the issue with the relevant authorities. Home Ministry sources, however, said Atwal’s name does not figure in the current blacklist maintained by immigration authorities. Addressing the regular press conference on Thursday, MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar also noted that the Canadian High Commission, describing it as an ‘oversight’, had withdrawn the dinner invitation to Atwal and the matter was thus closed. PER INCURIUM K I R A N PA R A S H A R K M @ Bangaluru IT was not just Punjab National Bank that was duped by Gitanjali group promoter Mehul Choksi in the humongous scam over the years. Gitanjali Gems’ franchisees, over 200 of them across India, were also cheated, forcing most of them to shut shop. They have dues totalling hundreds of crores, which may never be repaid. Several of these franchisees had lodged complaints individually and collectively with the Union finance ministry and Enforcement Directorate in 2015 and even filed cases in local courts. When nothing worked, Bengaluru-based businessman Hariprasad S V and six others brought the issue to the notice of the Prime Minister’s Office in 2016. Yet the information of whistleblowers was not treated with the seriousness it deserved. According to the victims, each of them invested anywhere between `5 crore and `25 crore with Gitanjali Gems around 2010 and after. In all, they pooled in over `300 crore. As per the contract, they were assured monthly payments over their deposits and also supply of gold and diamonds. When the franchisees complained of not getting money Gi, tanjali promised to hold jewellery exhibitions, which it said would bring in investors as well as better profits. Some of them who realised that they had fallen into a trap, teamed up in 2015 to fight for their dues. Speaking to The New Indian Express, Sharath of Kochi, who became a franchisee in 2013, said he realised he had been cheated a year later after he did not get the promised monthly payments. CM Chandrababu Naidu and Kia Motors CEO Han-Woo Park at the framework installation function in Anantapur on Thursday | EXPRESS The $2-billion project, the MoU for which was signed in April 2017, is one of the biggest foreign investment ventures in India. Kia Motors has been allotted 536 acres of land for its main plant, 36 acres for a township and 11.20 acres for a training centre which it is proposed to run jointly with the government to develop necessary manufacturing skills among local residents. EXPRESS READ HC nod to govt proposal on new complex for interim AP High Court Hyderabad: The Hyderabad High Court on Thursday approved a proposal to house the temporary AP High Court at the new Civil Courts Complex to be constructed in Amaravati. The site is not far from Justice City, where the permanent structure for the court is planned. The full court meeting chaired by the Acting Chief Justice held for over an hour discussed the visit of a five-judge committee to AP in the second week of February to identify suitable blocks to house the temporary AP HC in Vijayawada and its surroundings. The panel was not satisfied with the buildings shown by CRDA officials as none of them had enough facilities. RTC BUS HITS ROAD DIVIDER It’s a close shave for 40 bus passengers EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Visakhapatnam IT WAS a close shave for passengers on board an APSRTC Garuda bus that hit the iron railing of a road divider near Narasingabilli of Kasimkota mandal in Visakhapatnam district on Thursday . No causalities were reported as some passengers escaped with minor injuries. The bus with around 40 passengers on board was heading towards Visakhapatnam from Vijayawada. Sources said that the driver lost control over the wheels in his attempt to avert hitting a lorry going in the same direction and the bus hit the iron railing of the road divider. The police said that the both the RTC bus and lorry were over-speeding, while the passengers said that the driver managed to save their lives. The front part of the bus and the window pane was damaged. Kasimkota police have registered a case and investigation is on. “We are here to build more than just great cars. We aim to set a new standard of automotive lifestyle experience by providing Indian consumers world-class products and service, but also deeply engage with the Indian people and give back to the community whenever possible,” Kia president and CEO Han-Woo Park said on the occasion. The production of about threelakh cars per annum is scheduled to begin in the second-half of 2019. Kia officials, on being asked the reason behind choosing Andhra Pradesh as their investment destination, said the AP government was “very eager to take us in and was offering more incentives than other states in the region”. The automaker, which is hoping the applause its SP concept cars won at the recent Auto-Expo in New Delhi will translate into good business, is ahead of its schedule by a month. A senior official of the firm told TNIE its target audience was India’s upper-middle class aged between 20 and 30 years and which is willing to spend more than the average buyer. E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi OVER a month after the Supreme Court witnessed a judicial crisis, a fresh controversy has started brewing, this time between a bench led by Justice Madan B Lokur and another led by Justice Arun Mishra, over judicial discipline and propriety . It all began with a verdict on February 8 by a bench comprising justices Arun Mishra, A K Goel and Mohan M Shantanagoudar, which declared that compensation not availed within the stipulated five-year period would not be a ground to cancel land acquisition. With a 2:1 majority view, We do not mind our order being the bench said the 2014 set aside. We had verdict in a case regard- said that the ing the Pune Municipal order (in 2014) Corporation was taken was ‘per incuriam’ ‘per incurium’ (without and it was due regard to law). permissible under This ruling invalidated the law. It is for the 2014 judgment, deliv- the CJI to decide ered by former Chief Jus- which bench tice R M Lodha and jus- should hear it tices Madan B Lokur and Justice Arun Kurian Joseph. Mishra-led bench On Wednesday a bench , headed by Justice Lokur, while hearing a case related to the Land Acquisition Act, 2013, criticised Justice Mishra calling it ‘per incuriam’. The bench further asked high courts not to deal with any cases relating to the interpretation of or concerning Section 24 of the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013. So, when a new land acquisition case came up before Justice Mishra on Thursday he re, ferred it to Chief Justice Dipak Misra to take a decision on the administrative side or pass a judicial order, and said: “Whether it is judicial indiscipline or not has to be decided by a larger bench.” Another similar case came up before a bench headed by Justice A K Goel and he, too, sent the matter to the CJI.
Express Publications (Madurai) Limited publishes the prestigious English language newspaper The New Indian Express from 21 centres in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala and Orissa.
Express Publications (Madurai) Ltd. also publishes the Tamil daily Dinamani, Cinema Express (Tamil) and Malayalam Vaarika (Malayalam). Through a sister company, Kannada Prabha Publications Ltd., it publishes the Kannada daily Kannada Prabha.