BENGALURU TUESDAY MARCH 19, 2019 `6.00 PAGES 22 LATE CITY EDITION STEEPLECHASE FROM SIACHEN TO WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS Avinash Sable, a former infantryman posted at world’s highest battlefield, breaks national record & qualifies for Doha Worlds RAPID RISE IN TWO YEARS ■ 37 MARATHON MAN GOPI JOINS SABLE Sable joined the army right after he completed school and was posted at Siachen towards the end of 2012. He served till 2014 before being transferred to Rajasthan where he took up athletics. Despite only changing to steeplechase from cross-country in 2017, the 24-year-old havildar has already broken the national record twice ■ Asian champion Thonakal Gopi of Kerala has also qualified for the World Athletics Championships after finishing 11th in the Seoul International Marathon The 30-year-old clocked his personal best of 2 hours 13 minutes 39 seconds in the event in South Korea on Sunday P17 IN SEPTEMBER, SABLE HAD BROKEN THE 37-YEAR-OLD NATIONAL RECORD 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 Priyanka’s river sutra primed to attack Modi Pramod Sawant is N A M I TA B A J PA I @ Lucknow CONGRESS general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Monday took the river route to make her first electoral foray in a new avatar, linking her Ganga Yatra and her ancestral home - Swaraj Bhawan in Prayagraj - to try and reclaim the turf her party had long ceded without even putting up a decent fight. The curiosity factor was in full play as she addressed small gatherings enroute - called Saanchi Baat (true conversation) - to counter Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s popular Mann ki Baat (straight from the heart). She also held Nav pe Charchas on a motorboat she was travelling on with several g ro u p s o f s t u d e n t s a n d women. At all these gatherings, Priyanka kept her attack on Modi and the BJP, ignoring barbs from the BSP-SP alliance, which sought to rubbish a Con- gress gesture of leaving seven UP seats uncontested - where gathbandhan biggies are in the fray - as unwanted charity meant to create confusion. “We all have a common agenda and a common enemy. The task is Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra takes a boat to the Sangam, the confluence of the Yamuna and Ganga, in Prayagraj on Monday | AP to defeat the BJP,” Priyanka said firmly . Priyanka started her day by offering prayers at Bade Hanuman temple at Sangam and worshipping the Ganga at Prayagraj. At the Dumduma Ghat, she alleged that all sections of people had been muzzled under Modi rule. “You are not being heard by anyone. No one is there to share your pain.” “The government is just focussing on industrialists and the chowkidar has become part of them. Nobody owns India,” she said. Taking a swipe at the BJP’s Main bhi Chowkidaar campaign, Priyanka said: “A farmer told me that only the rich have watchmen, farmers are their own watchmen.” LAST STOP VARANASI Dressed in a pistachio green saree with a magenta border, Priyanka presented a perfect imagery of a traditional devout Hindu woman at the Hanuman temple while offering puja before embarking on her 140-km Ganga Yatra. Her last stop will be Assi Ghat in PM Modi’s seat of Varanasi I will contest as independent, says Sumalatha as Ambareesh fans cheer A N U S H A R A V I @Bengaluru AMID fans armed with mobile cameras struggling to capture their favourite stars on video, and with her son Abhishek by her side, Sumalatha Ambareesh announced her decision to contest from Mandya Lok Sabha seat as an independent at a private hotel in Bengaluru on Monday . She will be taking on Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy’s son and Congress-JD(S) alliance’s joint candidate Nikhil. She will file her nomination papers on March 20. The closed venue that has hosted many political events was crowded with fans and supporters of late Ambareesh and other San- Actor Sumalatha Ambareesh flanked by actor Yash (left), her son Abishek and actor Darshan, in Bengaluru on Monday | PUSHKAR V dalwood stars. Given the star power on stage with Darshan Toogudeep and Yash, the press conference resembled a movie’s teaser, with statements by people on the stage being greeted with hoots, cheers and whistles by fans. “I am compelled to take this decision for the people who showered love and af- WARRANT Khemka gets HC relief, ISSUED AGAINST NIRAV MODI CM remarks expunged H A R P R E E T B A J W A @ Chandigarh The Westminster Magistrate Court has issued an arrest warrant against fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi following a request by the Enforcement Directorate for his extradition. P9 SSLC, PUC results to be out in April EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @Bengaluru THE results of both second year PUC and SSLC will be out early this time. “We have decided to announce both the results in April,” P C Jaffer, Director, Department of Pre University Education, told the media on Monday . According to officials, the results of second year Pre university (PUC) will be declared in second week of April and Secondary School Leaving Certificate (SSLC) may be at the end of April. P2 IN a big relief to IAS officer Ashok Khemka, the Punjab & Haryana HC on Monday ordered that the ‘adverse’ remarks by Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar in his Annual Confidential Re por t be expunged. In Khemka’s ACR of 2016-17, Haryana Chief Secretary D S Dhesi had rated him 8.22 out of 10. Then Haryana sports and youth affairs minister Anil Vij, who is Khemka’s reviewing authority , had rated him 9.92 out of 10 for ‘overall grading on attributes’ saying Khemka has shown “excellent achievement under severe constraints”. Chief Minister Khattar who is the appraisal accepting authority, on December 31, 2017 rated him 9 out of 10 but observed that Vij’s report on Khemka was “slightly exaggerated”. Khemka wanted the remarks removed as they would have affected his elevation as additional secretary at the Centre. The 1991 batch IAS officer of the Haryana cadre, currently posted as principal secretary in the state sports department, had earlier faced the wrath of former CM Bhupinder Singh Hooda for cancelling a land deal between DLF and Congress leader Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra. He had been transferred almost 52 times in his 27-year-old career. fection on Ambareesh. If this causes pain to anybody , I will apologise right now. I haven’t arrived at this decision to hurt anybody. It is only because I don’t want to hurt the people of Mandya and Ambareesh’s fans. I will contest as an independent candidate for the people,” Sumalatha announced. Producer Rockline Venkatesh and veteran actor Doddanna were present during the announcement. Going by the statements, it is apparent that Sumalatha’s entire campaign will be centred around the late actor and his legacy in Mandya. The actors took turns to hail Ambareesh and his love for the people P7 of Mandya. Parrikar successor Speaker gets the hot seat; heads of two regional parties, Vijai Sardesai and Sudin Dhavalikar, to be his deputies A B H I J I T M U LY E @ Mumbai A day after Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar passed away, BJP leader and Assembly Speaker Pramod Sawant was named his successor. Compulsions of coalition politics forced the BJP to name two deputy chief ministers, both heads of two parties in the ruling alliance — Goa Forward Party’s Vijai Sardesai and Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party’s Sudin Dhavalikar. The oath taking ceremony got delayed well past midnight because allies were initially unwilling to accept Sawant as the new CM, though he was chosen as the leader of the BJP’s Goa Legislature Party . Despite persuasion by BJP leaders Nitin Gadkari and Amit Shah, both the GFP and the MGP wanted their pound of flesh to save the government — at least the post of deputy chief minister, if not that of the chief minister. The BJP assured ministerial posts for all the six MLAs of both the parties, but that failed to satisfy their appetite. It was when the BJP dropped the Assembly dissolution bomb, adding the Congress would not be allowed to form the new government at any cost, that the grumpy allies reportedly fell in line. Names of state Health Minister Vishwajeet Rane and Sudin Dhavalikar for chief ministership were doing the rounds as well since morning. However, while zeroing in on Sawant’s name, the BJP also sent the message that the CM’s post wouldn’t be given to any outsider who defected from the Congress last year. Two-time MLA from the Sanqelim constituency in the mining belt of North Goa, Sawant had left his mark as member of the Goa Industrial Development Corporation during his first term in the Assembly in 2012. A popular Ayurvedic practitioner, he is well regarded in the party , said a senior Goa BJP leader. Earlier in the day, the Congress met the Governor to stake its claim, saying it was the single-largest party in the state Assembly . Three techies were detained for chanting slogans in support of PM Modi in Bengaluru on Monday, according to police sources. The ruckus happened outside the venue where Congress president Rahul Gandhi interacted with techies at Manyata Tech Park. As soon as Rahul’s convoy rolled in, chants of ‘Modi’ rent the air. A video of a police official evicting one of the chanters from the premises was circulated on social media. P5 Anil pays `459cr to Ericsson to escape 3-month jail term Racing against time to meet the Supreme Court’s deadline, Reliance Communications has paid B458.77 crore of dues to Swedish telecom equipment maker Ericsson, according to sources. Failure to cough up the dues would have meant RCom Chairman Anil Ambani would have faced a three-month jail term. P15 He was serving as the Speaker of the Goa Legislative Assembly. The 45-year-old is a trained Ayurvedic doctor and has a masters in Social Work from Pune’s Tilak Maharashtra University VIJAI SARDESAI Head of the GFP, Sardesai, 49, was a Cabinet minister in the Parrikar government handling town and country planning; agriculture; archives & archeology as well as factories SUDIN DHAVALIKAR EXPRESS READ 3 techies detained for chanting pro-Modi slogans PRAMOD SAWANT Prime Minister Narendra Modi pays homage to former Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, in Panaji in Monday | EXPRESS A five-term MLA representing the Marcaim constituency, he heads the MGP that has three members in the state Assembly. He was the PWD minister in the Parrikar govt LEELA GROUP TO SELL FOUR HOTELS TO CANADIAN FUND E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi HOTEL Leela Venture Limited on Monday announced the sale of its luxury hotels in Bengaluru, Delhi, Chennai and Udaipur as well as its stake in The Leela Palace Agra to a Canadian fund for `3,950 crore. The deal includes transfer of all management contracts of existing hotels as well as those under construction to Brookfield Asset Management. All the intellectual property held by the company, including The Leela brand, would also be transferred to Brookfield. The group will continue to operate its first hotel, The Leela Mumbai, set up in 1986. If it decides to sell the Mumbai hotel, Brookfield will have a right of first refusal, it said in a note to stock exchanges. Attempt to repay debt The Leela group has over `6,000 crore debt. Proceeds from the transaction will be used to repay debt. After completion of the transaction, “all borrowings from all banks and financial institutions would stand repaid,” it said in a statement EYE ON OLYMPICS With exemptions, Indian cricketers likely to take national dope tests AT R E Y O M U K H O PA D H YAY @ Chennai AFTER resisting for a long time, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has finally accepted to come under the National Anti-doping Agency (NADA). After a meeting between the Committee of Administrators (CoA) and International Cricket Council (ICC) chairman Shashank Manohar in Mumbai on Monday, it was decided that the BCCI will be NADA compliant for six months. What happens after that will be decided later. Even though the ICC wants its member nations to be under their respective anti-doping agencies, the BCCI was not. The argument was, it follows guidelines of the Wo rl d A n t i - d o p i n g A g e n cy (WADA), collects urine samples of players and gets them tested at the National Dope Testing Laboratory (NDTL), which is WADAaccredited. But with cricket’s Olympic inclusion being subject to the nations coming under their national agencies, the BCCI not complying with this was becoming a hindrance. Manohar persuaded the BCCI to change this stand, saying that only because of India, cricket’s future at the Olympics might become uncertain. The BCCI, however, still managed to have its way in certain matters. In a to-befinalised agreement between BCCI, NADA and ICC, it is likely to be mentioned that the board’s own mechanism of collecting samples would remain instead of NADA personnel han- dling the collection part. But the samples would be sent to NDTL through NADA, unlike the current practice of BCCI’s own agency sending them to NDTL. It was also learnt that India cricketers will not come under the whereabouts clause when they are not on national duty Un. der this, athletes have to disclose where they are so that they can be P16 tested when officials want. CSK cancel evening show Chennai: Chennai Super Kings have cancelled a special screening of a film on the team made by Hotstar and scheduled for Tuesday due to security concerns.
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