CHENNAI TUESDAY MAY 14, 2019 `5.00 PAGES 22 LATE CITY EDITION MYSTERIOUS SABOTAGE ATTACK DAMAGES SAUDI OIL TANKERS Saudi Arabia said on Monday that two of its oil tankers were sabotaged off the coast of the United Arab Emirates U.S. SUSPECTS IRAN HAND IN THE INCIDENT ■ 20% IRAN WARNS AGAINST ‘ADVENTURISM’ Saudi said one of the two vessels was en route to pick up Saudi oil to take to the US. The incident comes a day after the UAE said four commercial vessels of various nationalities were targeted off the coast of Fujairah, which is located close to the Strait of Hormuz. Earlier, the US had warned that sanctions-hit Iran might target commercial shipping in the area | P13 ■ Tehran called for an investigation into the “alarming” attacks and warned against “adventurism” by foreign players The dramatic developments could further complicate the volatile situation in the region. The US has deployed a number of strategic B-52 bombers in response to alleged Iranian threats OF OIL TRADED WORLDWIDE MOVES THROUGH THE STRAIT OF HORMUZ 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 KCR calls Stalin to form ‘South Block’ at Centre WIDESPREAD RIOTS KEEP LANKA ON EDGE Glass strewn across the Abrar mosque in Kiniyama town of Sri Lanka (pic) that was vandalised by a mob on Sunday night. All windows and doors of the softpink building were damaged 1 At least one person was 2 reported dead in the riots that began on Sunday with mobs attacking mosques and damaging shops and businesses owned by Muslims The army was given shoot-at- 5 sight orders. Police fired tear gas at mobs attacking mosques and shops owned by Muslims in various parts of the country P13 REUTERS SHORTAGE OF COW HIDE LEAVES BALL INDUSTRY SICK The best of cricket balls are made using cow hide, which has become difficult to find Chennai: Kamal Haasan, chief of Makkal Neethi Maiyam, landed in controversy after he referred to Nathuram Godse as ‘Hindu terrorist’ while campaigning in Muslimdominated Pallapatti town in Aravakurichi assembly constituency on Sunday. P5 ITC appoints Sanjiv Puri as chairman & MD New Delhi: Diversified ITC Group on Monday announced the elevation of its MD Sanjiv Puri as the Chairman and Managing Director. Puri's elevation comes after noted industry leader and erstwhile ITC Chairman Y C Deveshwar passed away on Saturday | P15 F-21 only for India: Lockheed Martin US aerospace giant Lockheed Martin won't sell the newly rolled out F-21 fighter jets to any other country if India places an order, said Vivek Lall, vice-president, strategy and business development at Lockheed Martin in an interview to PTI EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi THE Supreme Court collegium has recommended the elevation of four judges as chief justices of the high courts of Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Telangana. A three-member collegium headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi recommended Justice D N Patel’s appointment as Chief Justice of Delhi High Court since incumbent Chief Justice Rajendra Menon is set to retire. Likewise, promotions of justices A A Kureshi, V Ramasubramanian and R S Chauhan as chief justices of high courts of Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Telangana res p e c t ive ly h ave b e e n recommended. Justice Ramasubramanian is the senior-most judge of the Madras High Court and at present is functioning, on transfer, in the Telangana High Court. While recommending his elevation, a collegium said it had taken into consideration the fact that at present there is only one chief justice from the Madras High Court. In Telangana, the post of CJ for the recently constituted separate high court has been vacant. The collegium proposed promoting Telangana’s acting Chief Justice Chauhan as its first Chief Justice. Justice Kureshi, the senior-most judge of the Gujarat High Court and at present functioning on transfer in the Bombay High Court, is proposed to be elevated as Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court since incumbent Justice S K Seth is due for retirement, the resolution said. BJP attacks, Congress defends DMK The government also blocked 4 social media platforms to stop people from inciting violence as the communal flare-up spread to new areas Kamal draws flak for criticising Godse Four high courts to get new chief justices DMK chief says committed to backing Congress and Rahul as PM candidate A nationwide curfew was 3 imposed on Monday to contain what was described as the worst outbreak of sectarian violence since the Easter Sunday bombings that killed over 250 people EXPRESS READ SC COLLEGIUM trade in Meerut is facing the same problem. “We are importing leather WITH cricket in the air and the from Switzerland to make cricket World Cup approaching, one expect- balls, which is naturally affecting ed the sports good manufacturing the costing,” says Rakesh Mahajan, industry of Meerut to be in a happy the owner of BDM, which has been frame of mind. Big events usually in this industry for decades. lead to a rise in demand. With established compaNot this time. Manufacnies finding it difficult, Why not turers of these goods say smaller businessmen are buffalo the last few years have been faring worse. Fear arising difficult, following the in- Buffalo hide is out of incidents stemming not the best troduction of GST and refrom cow slaughter is actfor this lated complications. Those ing as a deterrent. “This is because of in the business of making not a safe profession. You cricket balls are facing an lack of colour feel you are in danger when additional problem. The retention and you are dealing in someleather used comes mainly waterproofing thing that’s made using the from cow hide, which has issues. It may skin of cows,” says a manubecome tougher to procure make the balls facturer of cricket balls. harder in the last few years due to They say that buffalo hide is the clampdown on slaughnot ideal for this purpose ter of cattle. Many units in Uttar because of certain properties. Pradesh have shut down, forcing Thriving till a few years ago and the ball manufacturers to buy leath- topping charts, this industry has er from other states. now fallen behind Pakistan in From small scale operators to es- terms of export of cricket balls, say tablished companies like BDM, al- veterans of the industry, with finP16 most everyone associated with this gers crossed for the future. AYA N TA N C H O W D H U R Y @ New Delhi Poor demand pulls down auto sales to eight-year low E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi MULTIPLE factors including uncertainty around election results, high insurance costs and the liquidity crunch in the economy pulled down passenger vehicle (PV) sales for the month of April to an eight-year low. According to data released by Society of Indian Automobile Manuf acturers on Monday, domestic PV sales declined 17.07 per cent to 2,47,541 units in April from 2,98,504 units in the same period a year ago. Within passenger vehicles, the sale of passenger cars, utility vehicles and vans dropped 19.93 per cent, 6.67 per cent and 30.11 per cent, respectively . Vishnu Mathur, director-general of Siam, said original equipment manufacturers undertook inventory correction in view of the poor demand. He added the sentiment in the market is not good and consumers seem to have delayed their discretionary purchases till the elections are over. Not just PVs, two-wheeler and commercial vehicle sales also witnessed notable decline in April. Two-wheeler sales dropped 16.36 per cent to 16,38,388 units last month compared with 19,58,761 units in April 2018. “The DMK has a reputation of changing colours,” BJP’s Tamilisai said reacting to the meeting. Congress leader K S Alagiri said: “Even if Rao discussed a third alliance, we are sure Stalin would have asked him to join us.” Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao greets DMK chief MK Stalin, on Monday | EXPRESS E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Chennai AN invitation to support the Federal Front, if neither BJP nor Congress secure enough seats to form government, was reportedly the main agenda of Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s meeting with DMK chief M K Stalin, on Monday Rao is also under. stood to have stressed the importance of southern regional parties having better leverage in the next Union Government. Stalin, however, according to sources, conveyed his party’s ‘commitment’ to Congress. “He urged Rao to extend support for the Congress-led alliance to form government,” said DMK sources. The hour-long meeting at Stalin’s residence ended without a press conference. While DMK spokesperson termed the visit a ‘courtesy call’, most DMK leaders were tight-lipped on what was discussed at the meeting. A senior DMK leader said: “Stalin was the first to propose Rahul Gandhi as the Prime Minister candidate of the alliance. Stalin is also hoping to capture power in the State if our party wins all the 22 seats in Assembly bypolls. The support of eight Congress MLAs will be crucial for this.” Any wrong signals, the DMK leader said, would cost DMK-Congress alliance dearly in the four Assembly seats that will face bypolls on May 19. DMK sources also clarified that the Congress was informed in advance P7 about the meeting. China strikes back, raises tariffs on US goods worth $60 bn EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE DAYS after the US announced steep tariff hikes on $300 billion worth of Chinese products, China hit back on Monday raising tariffs on over 5,000 US products worth $60 billion. The new rates, which will kick in from June 1, range from 5% to 25%. Announcing the decision, Chinese foreign ministry said Beijing would not surrender to US pressure tactics in an apparent reference to US President Donald Trump’s warning that China “will be hurt badly” if it did not strike a deal with the US. Global markets tanked as the news spread. London’s FTSE 100 fell 0.5%, Shanghai Composite Index lost 1.21% or 35.50 points and Shenzhen Composite Index ended 1.08% lower. ED QUESTIONS CHANDA KOCHHAR UP IN SMOKE Columns of smoke emanating from a major fire that broke out at a Sewage Treatment Plant in Koyambedu, on Monday | MARTIN LOUIS | Report: P3 The ex-boss of ICICI Bank along and her husband Deepak were grilled for eight hours on Monday in connection with a bank loan fraud case | P15 REVENGE? Weeks after stopping child marriage, man hacked to death in public view E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Chennai IN a shocking case, a man was hacked to death right in front of his wife and family members by an armed gang on Sunday night. His wife, who tried to stop the attack, has been injured. Just two weeks ago, the deceased had intervened and stopped a child marriage in his locality in Ayanavaram. Police are probing whether he was murdered as revenge for stopping the child marriage. Jebaseelan, 48, was an auto driver and resident of Aynavaram. He was headed for his daughter’s wedding reception when an armed gang intercepted and attacked him, just few metres away from his house. The attack happened in full public view and his relatives watched helplessly while he was murdered, say the police. Earlier, on April 17, Jebaseelan saw posters announcing the wedding of a 16-year-old girl. Since he knew the girl’s age, he alerted the police about the matter. He also accompanied the police for inquiry and stopped the wedding from taking place. “Two days ago, Jebaseelan’s daughter got married in Tirupati. The reception was scheduled to happen on Sunday evening,” said a police officer. “We suspect that Vinodh, who was supposed to marry the 16-year-old girl, was angered by the news of Jebaseelan’s daughter getting married. We are probing whether Vinodh took help of his friends to eliminate Jebaseelan,” said the officer. The reception was to be held in Minjur. “On Sunday around 7.45 pm, when Jebaseelan, his wife Pris- HE WENT WITH COPS TO STOP CHILD MARRIAGE On April 17, Jebaseelan saw posters announcing the wedding of a 16-year-old girl. Since he knew the girl’s age, he alerted the police about the matter. He also accompanied the police for inquiry and stopped the wedding from taking place cilla and other relatives had just left from their house in Thikkakulam area, a bikeborne gang surrounded them. They started assaulting Jebaseelan. Priscilla tried to save her husband but sustained injuries in the process. She is currently undergoing treatment in hospital,” said the officer who is part of the investigation. The police have booked a case of murder and are searching for Vinodh.
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