CHENNAI l SATURDAY l MAY 5, 2018 l `4.00 l PAGES 28 l LATE CITY EDITION HAVE A TWITTER ACCOUNT? CHANGE YOUR PASSWORD ‘BUG FIXED, NO BREACH FOUND’ Twitter has asked its over 300 million users to consider changing their account passwords after it noticed a bug that stored “unmasked” data ■ 30 million HOW TWITTER STORES PASSWORDS “We have fixed the bug, and our investigation shows no indication of breach or misuse by anyone... Out of an abundance of caution, we ask that you consider changing your password on all services where you’ve used this password,” Twitter’s chief technology officer Parag Agrawal said ■ ■ It masks passwords, replacing them with a random set of numbers and letters that are stored in its system This lets it validate accounts without revealing passwords. But due to the bug, passwords were written to an internal log first The company says it has removed the stored passwords ESTIMATED NUMBER OF TWITTER USERS IN INDIA 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 ■ KALABURAGI Section 144 imposed, Net suspended as AMU tense HIGH ON HINDUTVA, COW SLAUGHTER BAN BJP manifesto promises to recommend ban on Popular Front of India and Karnataka Forum for Dignity, both Muslim outfits Promises to bring back the Prevention of Cow Slaughter Bill, 2012 N A M I TA B A J PA I @ Lucknow WITH tension continuing on the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) campus following a row over the portrait of Pakistan founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah on the walls of the students’ union hall, the local district magistrate ordered the suspension of internet services and enforced Section 144 in the district on Friday to maintain peace. The order will be in force till Saturday evening. AMU students, however, continued their protest, demanding action against right wing ‘intimidators’ amid deployment of a heavy security contingent. “The decision to suspend internet services was taken to ensure peace and check rumour mongering though social media in the wake of the students’ protest, as it could vitiate the atmosphere further,” said a senior district administration official. AMU vice chancellor Tariq Mansoor visited the Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College Hospital where three students injured in the police lathi-charge are being treated. He later visited the protesting students and assured them of his “solidarity”. AMU has been in the centre of a storm following a letter from Aligarh BJP MP Satish Gautam questioning the V-C over the portrait of Jinnah and seeking its removal. Samajwadi Party MP Praveen Nishad on Friday created a flutter by likening Jinnah to Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru. In Delhi, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said Jinnah was never an icon for the country and accused the BJP of of playing “dirty politics of sensationalism, divisiveness and polarisation”. EXPRESS READ Soon, GSTN to be govt-owned entity New Delhi: The GST Council on Friday approved converting the firm providing the IT backbone to the Goods and Services Tax (GST) — GST-Network (GSTN) — into a government-owned entity from being a private company. P17 Ex gratia, but none dead in bus blaze Patna: With no bodies or remains of skeletons found inside the bus that had overturned and caught fire in Bihar, the govt, after announcing an ex gratia of `4 lakh to the relatives of the ‘deceased’, has conceded that no passengers were killed in the mishap. Gau Seva Aayog disbanded by Siddu to be revived Hindus alone to be appointed members of temple administration boards Promise of subsidies for Char Dham, Sindhu Darshana and Kailash Manasarovar yatras for senior citizens Assures no government interference in administration of temples in the state Politics of loan write-off gets bigger in K’taka BJP says H1L farm loans to be waived; Rahul promises it across India after ’19 E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Bengaluru Congress will waive loans of farmers across the country within 10 days of coming to power at the Centre after the 2019 polls Rahul Gandhi, Cong president How BJP, Cong reach minorities Congress made announcements for setting up the international centre of Buddhism and restoration of Jain Basadis, while the BJP has only assured recovery of illegallyacquired Wakf board properties. While Congress announced a host of sops for minorities, the BJP has limited its sops to SC/ STs and other backward classes, sending a message on who it is trying to appease CALL it competitive populism if you will. While the ruling Congress had in its manifesto for the May 12 Assembly elections released last week promised smartphones for students in the 18-23 age group, the BJP on Friday assured free smartphones to women from families living below the poverty line. The Siddaramaiah government had last year waived farm loans of up to `50,000 taken from cooperative banks, but the BJP upped the stakes by promising to waive loans up to `1 lakh taken from both cooperative and nationalised banks - a demand the Congress government had refused to accept. Hours after the BJP released its manifesto, Congress president Rahul Gandhi promised to waive farm loans if elected to power at the Centre in the 2019 general elections. The BJP’s vision document, titled Namma Karnataka, Namma Vachana, released by its chief ministerial candidate B S Yeddyurappa, not only features 2018 a host of sops for women, students, farmers, Dalits and backward classes but also pushes its core Hindutva agenda. The party promises to prohibit cow slaughter and recommend a ban on outfits like PFI. Along with reintroducing various schemes implemented during Yeddyurappa’s previous term as chief minister, the BJP also attempted to reinvent the Congress’ populist schemes. While the Congress had assured to distribute free laptops to students of classes 10, 11 and 12, the BJP announced free laptops to all students enrolling in colleges. The Congress promised to provide free education to all in government schools till Class 12, and the BJP assured free education to all students till degree except in professional courses. Congress wants to spend `1.25 lakh crore on irrigation while the BJP promised `1.50 lakh crore for it. In what seems to be an emulation of the Siddaramaiah government’s Indira Canteens, the BJP has promised to set up 300 Mukhya Mantri Annapoorna canteens across the state. P8 For 1,500-odd aspirants, ordeal just begins as they embark on journey SUSHMITHA RAMAKRISHNAN @ Chennai SWETHA Arumugam*, a student from Tirunelveli, who aspires to crack NEET, will go on a 12-hour bus journey to Ernakulam first and then a one-hour journey by auto, to write her test on Sunday. She is among hundreds of students from Tamil Nadu, who have been allotted test centres in another State. Over 1.1 lakh students from Tamil Nadu will be writing NEET on Sunday And as a result . of the Supreme Court’s last-minute stay on the Madras High Court’s directive to set up extra NEET exam centres in the State, over 1,000 students from the State will have to take at least an overnight journey to write their test. “The CBSE could not allocate centres for roughly around 1,500 students within the State,” a senior CBSE official from the State Students board a train in Nagapattinam on Friday | EXPRESS told Express. Even as the State government promised on Friday to subsidise students’ travel to exam centres outside State with `1,000, students will not receive their funds until after the exam. While a majority of the students travelling outside Tamil Nadu to take the exam have been allotted centres Social media shows empathy A social media battalion of goodwill ambassadors offered to sponsor and help students, who were allocated NEET centres outside Tamil Nadu. Actors and politicians too jumped on the bandwagon and offered to help students. FOR the first time since World War II, no Literature Nobel will be awarded this year. The Swedish Academy that selects the laureate took the big decision as it found itself engulfed in a sexual scandal that shattered its credibility Other annual . Nobel prizes will not be affected since the academy only awards the Literature Nobel. The 18-member academy has promised to clean itself up and erties in Stockholm and Paris. Other allegations against him include groping Sweden’s crown princess Victoria. Arnault, an influential figure in the art world and a close friend of a bunch of academy members, denied all the charges. Within the academy there were calls for Katarina’s resignation. When its permanent secretary Sara Danius ordered a probe, she EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Chennai THE Madras High Court has allowed a 14-year old rape victim to terminate her pregnancy of around 18 weeks. Justice T Raja gave the green signal on April 28, while passing orders on a writ petition from the Child Welfare Committee, represented by its chairperson. Committee counsel told the judge that the minor girl was produced before it by the Kancheepuram District Collector on April 4. She was then admitted in the Christ Faith Home for Children at Mettu Colony in Manapakkam. At the time of production, it was reported that the girl was raped by a known person five months ago. Immediately thereafter, the girl was taken to the Chengalpattu Medical College Hospital and an entry for teenage pregnancy was made. A case was registered on April 4. Again, the committee sent a letter dated April 12 to the head of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Chengalpattu Medical College and Hospital, seeking medical advice regarding continuation of pregnancy . Adolescent pregnancies are prone to higher risk of complications like pregnancy induced hypertension, anaemia, pre-term birth, premature rupture of membranes, intrauterine growth restriction and increased infections. The victim and her mother had been counselled to give consent for termination of pregnancy Moreover, the peti. tioner also suggested termination of pregnancy for securing the minor girl’s health and life. “In view of the above, this court directs the dean to do the needful by terminating the single intra uterine pregnancy of about 18 weeks gestational age,” the judge said and allowed the petition. The Rajasthan Tamil Sangam said they were willing to help students with food and stay in Jaipur. It has received over 300 calls since. “We will be pooling in resources to help all students,” said R Venkateshwaran from the Sangam. HOT SHOT A mirage forms near Marina Beach due to heat. The period of kathiri veiyil started on Friday, and ends on May 28 | MARTIN LOUIS Flipkart board stamp on Walmart deal EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi THE race to acquire India’s largest e-commerce player Flipkart might well be over, with multiple reports stating on Friday that a deal with Walmart is just days from being finalised and that broad contours of it have already been agreed to. According to a Bloomberg report, which quoted sources close to the negotiations, Flipkart’s board has approved an agreement to sell around 75% of the company to a Walmart-led group for approximately $15 billion. This would hike the total valuation of the company to close to $20 billion - way above last year’s $12 billion - making it the most valued Indian startup. Separate reports by wire agencies also claim that a deal is close to being finalised, with Walmart expected to acquire nearly 7273% stake in the company Under . the proposed deal, Softbank Group Corp - the largest shareholder in Flipkart - will sell all of its over 20% stake in Flipkart. At a valuation of $20 billion for the company, Soft bank’s stake is expected to net it a cool $4 billion - a tidy profit in just a year. Softbank had invested around $2.5 billion through its Vision Fund at the earlier valuation. Flipkart has not responded to emailed queries on the deal. It is also likely that Googleparent firm Alphabet Inc. will participate in the investment No Lit Nobel this year as sex scandal stink kills credibility offer the award next year to two winners. The current crisis began in November last in the wake of the global #MeToo campaign, when Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter published testimonies of 18 women who claimed they were raped, sexually assaulted or harassed by JeanClaude Ar nault, whose wife is academy member Katarina Frostenson. Some of these shocking incidents reportedly happened at the academy’s prop- in Kerala and Karnataka, at least a few hundreds will have to travel as far as Rajasthan and Sikkim. School Education Minister KA Sengottaiyan, on more than one occasion, defended that only students from private and CBSE school were allotted centres outside the State. However, sources in the School Education department confirmed that at least 98 students from gover nment schools were allotted exam centres outside the State. Priya Shyam*, another NEET aspirant from a government school in Thoothukudi, will be travelling to Ernakulam with her father on Saturday While at . least five of her schoolmates will be writing their exams in her centre, her father refused to send his daughter alone with other students. “Not only for her safety I’m also going there to provide , her moral support,” said Shyam Vel,* her father. P2 Help from Rajasthan Tamil Sangam SPRING CLEANING EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE HC allows minor rape victim to abort foetus NOT VERY NEET was eased out of her position, which triggered a fresh round of anger. Later, six of its members, including Sara, quit. The ‘resignations’ paralysed the academy as its meetings need a quorum of 12 but it had only 11 active members since one had already been inactive for over a couple of decades. The problem also lay with the academy structure. Till this We find it necessary to commit time to recovering public confidence in the Academy before the next laureate can be announced - Anders Olsson, academy’s interim permanent secretary week, there could be no resignations as all appointments were for life. Those who quit could only be termed inactive. All that is now changing, with King Carl XVI Gustaf, the academy’s patron, tweaking the structure to let members inactive for two years resign and induct new ones. “We find it necessary to commit time to recovering public confidence in the Academy before the next laureate can be announced,” the academy’s interim permanent secretary Anders Olsson said. with Walmart, pumping in around $1-2 billion as the global giants seek to halt Amazon’s rampage around the world. If the Walmart deal comes through, Flipkart will receive some much-needed fiscal muscle. Amazon has been rapidly catching up with Flipkart’s volumes, with both players neck-andneck currently. While managing to hold its own, Flipkart has been seeking funds to compete with Amazon, whose founder Jeff Bezos has committed $5.5 billion to the country . As for Flipkart’s founders, Sachin and Binny Bansal, it is reported that the former might exit the company if the Walmart deal goes through. A DONE DEAL? n Walmart-led group to get 72-75% stake in Flipkart n bn is the estimated worth $15 of the deal n Deal values Flipkart around $20 bn, a sharp jump from the $12 bn valuation last year n Softbank to divest entire 20% stake in Flipkart for estimated $4 bn n Softbank had acquired the stake just last year for around $2.5 bn n Google parent firm Alphabet could invest around $1-2 bn in seperate deal Source: Bloomberg, PTI reports Telecom sector’s revenue drops 8.56% to `2.55 L cr S E S A S E N @ Chennai EVEN as the aggressive newbie Reliance Jio dragged other operators to losses through its cutthroat pricing, the telecom sector’s gross revenue declined by 8.56 per cent to `2.55 lakh crore in 2017. And this, by far, resulted in a notable decline in the government collections in the form of licence fee and spectrum usage charges. According to data released by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) on Friday, the government’s total collection from licence fee dropped by 18.78% in 2017, while revenue from spectrum usage charges plunged by 32.81%. Moreover, despite a growing subscriber base, there was a decline in telcos’ revenue. “Total subscribers increased from 1,151.78 million at the end of December 2016 to 1,190.67 million at the end of December 2017, up 3.38%,” TRAI said.
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