KOCHI l SATURDAY l AUGUST 24, 2019 l `7.00 l PAGES 20 l LATE CITY EDITION SINDHU, PRANEETH CONFIRM MEDALS AT WORLD C’SHIPS World No 5 bests Tai Tzu-ying 12-21, 23-21, 21-19 in quarterfinals, while Indonesian Jonatan Christie goes down 24-22, 21-14 OF CONSISTENCY AND A LONG WAIT TIME TO GO FOR GOLD With her victory, Sindhu sealed her third Worlds medal on the trot. Praneeth, on the other hand, is now the first Indian male shuttler since Prakash Padukone in 1983 to ensure a podium finish in the tournament. This will also be the first time that India are medalling in both the men’s and the women’s categories at the Worlds | P14 ■ ■ ■ Sindhu is the only Indian to have won silver at the Worlds, having done so in the last two editions She will be up against World No 3 Chen Yu Fei in the semifinal Praneeth, on the other hand, will face a tough task, taking on World No 1 Kento Momota in his last-four clash 5 MEDALS WON BY SINDHU AT WORLD’S, JOINT BEST WITH ZHANG NING 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 Strong stimulus to wake up elephant FM’s press meet appeared like a mini-Budget Major relief measures for MSMEs, banks Auto sector gets its due Additional surcharge on foreign investors removed Angel tax relief Budding firms can now raise big money without fear as angel tax has been withdrawn for govt registered start-ups This was a major dampener in the Budget, which spooked foreign portfolio investors who deserted the Indian bourses for safer markets. The relaxation could see them coming back Measures to end tax terrorism All notices, summons and orders from income-tax authorities will be issued through a centralised computer system to avoid harassment and corruption by tax officers. Individual letters/notices issued by officers will be invalid E70,000 crore to be injected through PSU banks This additional credit infusion will enable banks to lend more to small traders, MSMEs and retail borrowers, which will in turn perk up consumption and revive market sentiments. Plus, PSU banks cannot sit on RBI rate cut transmission. EMIs will come down as rates on housing, auto loans will be directly linked with repo rate Empowering bank officials To support honest decision-making and to prevent harassment for genuine commercial decisions by bankers, CVC has issued directions that Internal Advisory Committee (IAC) in banks to classify cases as vigilance and non-vigilance. Decisions of the IAC and bank CVO/ DA will be treated as final Fast tax refund for cash-strapped MSMEs From now, GST refunds to be timebound. All pending payments will be cleared within 30 days; future refunds will be made within 60 days Govt turns buyer to support ailing automobile sector A N U R A D H A S H U K L A @ New Delhi BIG CSR norms eased TAKEAWAYS Ban on purchasing new vehicles to replace old ones in govt departments lifted. Plus, all vehicles purchased between now and March 2020 will get a 30% depreciation benefit, up from 15%. This can bring down tax liability These measures will provide the immediate relief that the industry was seeking Venu Srinivasan, Chairman, TVS Motor Company Corporate Social Responsibility violations by companies will now be treated as a civil case and not a criminal offence Instant removal of FPI tax is a very short-term measure with long-term impact Ashishkumar Chauhan, MD and CEO, BSE GIVING a mega booster shot to India’s depressed economy, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday announced a plethora of measures ranging from tax relief to cash injection into public sector banks to improve liquidity . In what appeared to be a mini-budget, the FM’s announcements included rolling back of the vexatious surcharge on foreign portfolio investors, withdrawing angel tax on start-ups and a package of measures for the struggling auto sector, MSMEs and banks. “India will exempt foreign investors from the super-rich tax. An additional surcharge on domestic investors will also be withdrawn,” said Sitharaman at a press conference here on Friday. “The pre-Budget position is restored,” she added. The surcharge on foreign portfolio and domestic investors was removed by withdrawing it on long- and short-term capital gains. However, Sitharaman ruled out any immediate review of the super-rich surcharge, stating that would be looked into only in 2022. F P I s h av e p u l l e d o u t `12,105.30 crore from Indian capital markets so far this month. This was on top of the net `12,418.73 crore they withdrew last month. To mitigate the difficulties faced by start-ups and their investors, Sitharaman decided to withdraw the controversial angel tax, which was stifling startup funding. The tax imposed by Section 56(2)(viib) of the Income Tax Act imposed a 30% tax on money raised by a startup during a funding round, which was considered more than its fair market value. Officials said the tax rollbacks would cost the exchequer `1,400 crore. A dedicated cell under a member of CBDT will be set up for addressing the problems of start-ups. These measures were a part of the FM’s 32-point measures to boost the economy, which is showing signs of slowdown. India’s GDP growth in the January-March quarter slid to a near 5-year low of 5.8%, and most analysts expect data due later this month to show that growth in April-June would be in the 5.5-6 per cent range. The FM’s move comes in the backdrop of rising concerns about the economy Moody’s In. vestors Service on Friday cut India’s GDP growth forecast for 2019 calendar year to 6.2% from P13 6.8% forecast earlier. Sabarimala: Don’t antagonise faithful, CPM tells cadre EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE Sabarimala campaign @ T’Puram The CPM leadership is learnt to have decided not to go for further campaigning with its stance on the Sabarimala issue. IN a major rethink on its stance on faith-related issues in the wake of the Sabarimala fiasco, the CPM has asked cardholders - restrictions and party cadre and followers not regulations on religious matto antagonise the faithful. In a ters - would continue. clear indication that the party The rethink comes in the wants to reach out to the wake of the drubbing in the faithful, CPM state secretary last Lok Sabha election and Kodiyeri Balakrishnan asked the feedback that supporters the party cadre not to abwere unhappy with the stain from local relistance adopted by the g i o u s e ve n t s a n d party and the governfunctions. ment on the SabarimaKodiyeri also admitla issue. ted to the erosion of The party, which CPM’s support base and held marathon discusKodiyeri called for an overhaul in sions on what went the working of party Balakrishnan wrong, is now making a units, from the branch last-ditch effort to bring committee to the state level. back the scores of faithful Addressing the media after who were originally part of the party’s six-day leadership the party’s core support base meet here on Friday Kodiyeri in the state. It is reliably , said the party is not opposed learnt the party is not against to the faithful. The lower frac- its cadre taking part in temple tions can take appropriate de- and church committees, to cisions regarding the role to win back people’s trust. This be played in local religious would help bring back the festivals. However, the CPM cadre who migrated to the chief made it clear that the Sangh Parivar, following the code of conduct for party Sabarimala fiasco. ● More on P5 CHIDAMBARAM TO STAY IN Keralites top drug smugglers to Gulf from India CBI CUSTODY FOR WEEKEND E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @Kochi EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi THE Supreme Court on Friday granted former Union Minister P Chidambaram protection from arrest by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the INX Media scam till Monday, but refused to give him any relief in the CBI remand, which will end on the same day . However, bench of justices R Banumathi and A S Bopanna agreed to hear a fresh petition challenging the trial judge’s order granting four days of custody to the CBI. During the hearing, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta who appeared for the CBI and the ED said the plea for anticipatory bail ing agency as observation on the CBI matter became in its order. This clearly infructuous since Chidam- showed bias, he argued. baram had already been Mehta argued that custoarrested. dial interrogation was necHowever, senior advocate essary as Chidambaram Kapil Sibal, representing was evasive. Chidambaram, said the “At least 10 properties matter for anticipatory and 17 offshore bank bail was mentioned accounts is what we on Wednesday . have found so far, Just because it which have direct could not be taken or indirect link to up, the CBI arrestChidambaram. We ed Chidambaram have electronic evilater in the day, he P Chidambaram dence, email exsaid, arguing that changes to trace he still has the right to be the route of the illicit, illeheard. gal transfer or money Shell . On the plea against the companies were created by ED, Sibal claimed that the those having close connecDelhi High Court’s single tions with Chidambaram judge had copy-pasted ver- to launder money,” Mehta bal notes of the investigat- added. P9 CHEQUE CASE Was jailed because of Thushar: NRI bizman I have all documents to support my claim. I decided to move against Thushar legally because both he and his father were not ready to help me when I repeatedly approached them Nazil Abdullah While I shut down the company, Nazil landed in trouble. I wasn’t responsible for his suffering. Since he understood my innocence, we agreed to settle the issue amicably Thushar Vellappally A J AY K A N T H @ Kochi FOR Dubai-based young entrepreneur Nazil Abdullah, it was a last-ditch effort to regain at least some of what he has lost when he decided to move against Bharath Dharma Jana Sena (BDJS) president Thushar Vellappally with a cheque bounce case in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). When asked about the case, the 38-year-old engineering graduate from Mathilakam in Kodungalloor narrates a tale of suffering, treachery and intimidation, and says Thushar’s company Boeing Constructions refused to make payments to him for a work that Nazil’s firm sub contracted from Thushar’s company . “I lost everything and was in jail for more than six months because of the breach of trust committed by Thushar. I knew that I was taking on a bigwig who has immense influence with the state and Union governments. I am legally strong because I have all documents to support my claim. I decided to move against him legally because both Thushar and his father Vellappally Natesan were not ready to help me when I repeatedly approached them,” Nazil said in a WhatsApp clip which he sent to TNIE. Thushar was arrested in Ajman, UAE on Thursday in connection with the cheque-bounce case and later released on bail. Efforts are currently on for an out-of-the-court settlement in the case. Reports said after talking over phone, Thushar and Nazil met at a hotel where Thushar has been staying after being released on bail. Confirming that talks are on for a possible settlement between him and Nazil, Thushar on Friday claimed that the case against him was the result of a misun● More on P6 derstanding. AT a time when the state is witnessing a spurt in drug abuse cases, Keralites are also gaining notoriety for smuggling narcotics and psychotropic substances to Gulf countries. Considering the gravity of the issue, the Customs Preventive unit has decided to enhance surveillance and screening measures at airports in the state to prevent passengers from smuggling out contraband. According to sources in the External Affairs Ministry, recently Qatar raised the issue with the Gulf countries concerned about increasing number of Indians caught for smuggling contraband ALARMING STATS 210 Indians jailed in Qatar this year for smuggling drugs 8,189 93 Keralites were arrested in Qatar this year for smuggling drugs Indians are lodged in jails abroad for various crimes Indian Ambassador about the increasing number of Indian citizens getting caught at Doha airport while attempting to smuggle in drugs, prohibited medicines and foreign currencies. A list of Customs to deploy dedicated units at departure areas of airports in Kerala to curtail drug smuggling people caught for smuggling contraband was handed over to the Indian Government. Qatar is currently providing visa-on-arrival facility for Indian citizens. “The list comprises details of 210 Indian citizens caught for contraband smuggling from January to July this year. Of this, 93 are from Kerala alone. If these smuggling cartels are not contained, Qatar may be forced to reconsider its visa-on-arrival facility for India,” said a source. Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the UAE also are concerned about rising drug smuggling incidents involving Indians, especially people from Kerala. The Customs Department has decided to follow up the matter seriously and engage its special units to crack down on ● More on P4 drug smugglers. EXPRESS READ Intel report on LeT: Kerala on high alert Champions Boat League to kick off on August 31 Four Class XII students booked for ragging Rahul may join Oppn team visiting Srinagar today Kochi: Kerala Police are on high alert after intelligence reports that six Lakshar-e-Taiba (LeT) terrorists have sneaked into Tamil Nadu from Sri Lanka via sea route. Based on the alert, State Police Chief Loknath Behera has sent a directive to all district police chiefs to take necessary steps to strengthen surveillance, especially at bus stands, railway stations, airports and places of worship | P6 Alappuzha: The Tourism Department and the Nehru Trophy Boat Race (NTBR) Society have begun steps to conduct the postponed IPL-modelled Champions Boat League (CBL). The CBL will kick off on August 31 with the NTBR at Punnamada. The NTBR, scheduled to be held on August 10, was postponed in the wake of the recent flood | P6 Kanhangad: Four Class XII students jabbed a junior student with the key of a motorcycle and pen, and assaulted him on Thursday, for allegedly turning up at the school without shaving. Mohammed Afreed, a Class XI student, is the victim of ragging at C H Muhammed Koya Smaraka GVHSS in Kottapuram. The Nileshwaram police have booked the students for ragging | P4 An all-party delegation of Opposition leaders will visit Srinagar on Saturday to assess the ground situation. The Congress is likely to be represented by Rahul Gandhi. CPM’s Sitaram Yechury, CPI’s D Raja, DMK’s Tiruchi Siva and RJD’s Manoj Jha will be part of delegation. 20 PAGES, INCLUDING 4 PAGES OF KOCHI EXPRESS
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