CHENNAI SATURDAY OCTOBER 12, 2019 `5.00 PAGES 26 LATE CITY EDITION ETHIOPIA PM WINS NOBEL FOR ENDING CONFLICT Abiy Ahmed Ali was awarded Peace Prize for his efforts to resolve a border dispute with his country’s arch-foe Eritrea OLIVE BRANCH AFTER 20 YEARS OF WAR ■ 300 GREW UP SLEEPING ON THE FLOOR On July 9, 2018, just months after taking charge, Abiy and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki formally ended a 20-year-old conflict between their countries that started in 1998 over boundary disputes. Taking cognizance of his efforts, the Nobel Committee said, “Abiy Ahmed initiated important reforms that give many citizens hope for a better life” ■ ■ Born into a poor family, Abiy grew up sleeping on the floor in a house that lacked electricity and running water The 43-year-old leader granted amnesty to thousands of political prisoners and ended a media censorship Abiy joined military at a young age, and soon, became spy chief P13 NOMINATIONS WERE RECEIVED FOR 2019 NOBEL PEACE PRIZE 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 Modi, Xi discuss terror, trade Longer than planned dinner indicates the seriousness with which the two leaders held their informal talks; South Indian cuisine served during one-on-one dinner at Mamallapuram ROUSING WELCOME TO HIGH-PROFILE VISITORS C S H I V A K U M A R @ Chennai It’s coconut water pe charcha for Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping at Mahabs on Friday | PTI WHY CHINA PRESIDENT TRAVELLED BY ROAD NO POLITICAL BANNERS, JUST NATIONAL FLAGS Unlike Narendra Modi, why did Xi Jinping opt to travel to Mamallapuram by road instead of a helicopter? Turns out that Chinese leaders, as matter of policy, avoid helicopters. Xi travelled on his Hongqi, a luxury car Chinese heads of state have used since Mao Zedong. The car was flown in from China for the event. Hongqi means the red flag Despite the Madras High Court allowing the government to put up banners in honour of the visiting leaders, they were finally not installed. Barring a few pocket-sized pictures of Jayalalithaa carried by some partymen, there were no party identities. Instead, all of them were seen waving national flags of India and China Arjuna’s Penance is one of the grandest places... It brings to life aspects of the Mahabharata —Narendra Modi, Prime Minister Overwhelmed by the grand welcome at the Chennai international airport and the arrangements in the city —Xi Jinping, Chinese President TN to soon get 6 new govt medical colleges S I N D H U J A J A N E @ Chennai THE number of government medical colleges in Tamil Nadu will soon increase from 24 to 30, as the Union Health Ministry has granted approval to start six more medical colleges in the State with 150 MBBS seats in each of them. According to an official source, “The Centre has given approval for the new medical colleges under the Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY) scheme. As per the scheme, six government district headquarters’ hospitals, in Ramanathapuram, Virudhunagar, Nilgiris, Dindigul, Tirupur and Namakkal, will be upgraded as medical college hospitals.” “While the Centre will sanction 60 per cent of the total expenditure for the facilities, the State will contribute the remaining, 40 per cent. With the approval, the number of MBBS seats in Government medical colleges is likely to go up from 3,350 to 4,250. Tamil Nadu has the highest number of government MBBS seats in the country,” the official added. Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami greeting Xi Jinping | EXPRESS “If everything goes as planned, the 900 MBBS seats will be added in the coming academic year itself, and distributed through counselling. The district collectors of Ramanathapuram, Virudhunagar, Nilgiris, Dindigul, Tirupur and Namakkal have also allotted land for the medical colleges,” the source added. Centre to bear 60% of the expenses The Centre has given approval to start six new medical colleges under PMSSY scheme with 150 MBBS seats each. The Centre will bear 60 per cent of the total expenditures As per the eligibility criteria, each hospital should treat over 300 in-patients and out-patients, but all these district headquarters hospitals have been treating over 600 patients on a daily basis. The State has infrastructure and the manpower to put these colleges to use as early as possible, said officials. KOHLI LEADS INDIA FROM THE FRONT Virat Kohli broke a slew of records while notching up an unbeaten 254, his highest Test score, on Day 2 of India’s second Test against South Africa in Pune. India declared after posting 601/5 | P16 CHENNAI wore a festive look on Friday, with people from different walks of life coming together to accord a grand welcome for visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. School stuSome soft dents, artistes, politicians and Chinese exdiplomacy patriates lined up along the roads taken by the leaders to reach Mamallapuram for Ancient Tamil their informal summit, cheering and wavinscriptions ing national flags of India and China. dating back to Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami 12th century and Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselhave been vam were present to welcome both Modi found in and Xi, who arrived separately . Quanzhou, a Xi, who arrived around 1.30 pm, retired port city in to ITC Grand Chola Sheraton, before pro- China in Fujian ceeding towards Mamallapuram. Modi arProvince. Xi rived 15 minutes earlier and flew to Taj said he was Fisherman’s Cove. He was accompanied by aware of it. The External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar two leaders and NSA Ajit Kumar Doval. discussed how At the Mahabs, convoys of Modi and Xi to enhance arrived at a gap of 20 minutes, with the knowledge in prime minister dressed in crisp white veshthis aspect ti, shirt and thundu (shoulder cloth). Greeting Xi at the Arjuna’s Penance monument, Modi took him on a guided tour, along with translators, briefing him about the architectural marvel. The two leaders also visited ‘Krishna’s Butter Ball’, a gigantic granite boulder resting on a short incline. The boulder is approximately six metres high and five metres wide and weighs around 250 tons. P2, 3 EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Chennai DIPLOMATIC events generally happen with clockwork precision. But, a one-on-one dinner Prime Minister Narendra Modi had with visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping at Mamallapuram, which was scheduled to be over by 8.30 pm, exceeded by almost an hourand-a-half on Friday leading to , speculation on what might have kept them occupied for so long. Of course, the two leaders were treated to traditional South Indian cuisine, which included thakkali rasam, arachavitta sambar, Malabar lobster, ada pradhaman, and mamsam biriyani. But Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale chose to reveal little apart from saying the two leaders spent quality time over dinner on Day One of their informal summit and discussed a wide range of issues. In all, the two leaders spent five hours together on Friday, including half-an-hour spent watching a cultural extravaganza. They had detailed discussions on their respective SOME RELIEF ECONOMY IN DISTRESS New rules could stifle GST refunds Oil prices rise after Iranian ship attacked J O N AT H A N A N A N D A @ New Delhi CRUDE oil prices spiked again on Friday after a missile attack on an Iranian tanker heightened concerns over military escalation in the West Asian region. But, while Brent crude crossed the $60 per barrel mark soon after the attack, the International Energy Agency’s forecast of significantly lower oil demand due to weakening economic activity this year pulled prices back down again. According to market data, Brent crude (which forms a significant portion of the Indian crude oil basket) shot up 2% on the spot market, going from $59.53 per barrel to $60.65 a barrel after Iranian news agencies reported that a National Iran Tanker Company tanker had been attacked by missiles near the Saudi Arabian port of Jeddah. “Coming after the recent drone attacks, the market reaction was expected,” said a senior executive with a state-run oil firm. Which way crude oil prices trend is critical for India, which imports 80% of its crude oil needs. A $1 rise in crude price could mean a $1.5-2 billion increase in India’s annual import bill. A N U R A D H A S H U K L A & J AYA N TA R O Y C H O W D H U R Y @ New Delhi IN a move that is likely to impact the cash flow of businesses, which are already battling a slowing economy, the government has capped the input tax credit registered entities can claim under GST at 20%. There was no such restriction till now and GST refunds could be claimed on the basis on self assessment. While the government seeks to check false claims and plug revenue leakages by tightening norms, the new rules will increase the workload of assessees. To avail full input credit, the entire eligible amount must now be support- 7.6 5.2 those businesses that regularly check with their vendors. It was initiated after multiple deliberations with tax officials. This will improve compliance,” said a senior finance ministry official. According to Pratik Jain, national leader (indirect taxes) at Pwc India, the move was long overdue. “The government had taken an in-principle decision at the beginning of the GST exercise to place the burden of checking of compliance by vendors on businesses. It could not enforce this initially because of technical glitches. It is doing so now.” CONTINUED ON: P15 Industrial production shrinks to 7-year low IN THE RED Aug 2018 Aug 2019 ed by relevant invoices uploaded by suppliers. “The idea is to force business houses to get their suppliers to upload their bills and receipts as soon as possible so that they can claim input credit. Time gaps between the two actions mean loose ends and a lot of fake credit claims,” said Sumit Dutt Majumder, fo r m e r ch a i r m a n , Central Board of Excise and Customs He noted that the disruptive measure will cause initial hardship to businesses, especially small businesses that do not have the clout to force suppliers to comply with law. “The move will not impact 4.8 E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi -1.2 Manufacturing -0.9 Electricity -1.1 General Figures are percentage growth over the corresponding period of the previous year PASSENGER VEHICLE SALES DROP FOR 11TH STRAIGHT MONTH IN SEPT PAGE 15 INDUSTRIAL output in August shrank the most in nearly seven years to 1.1% compared with a 4.8% growth in the year-ago period, on the back of a massive slowdown in demand that saw sectors such as automobile posting double-digit fall in sales. According to analysts, the poor show by industry could prompt RBI to again go in for a cut in key policy rates to which bank lending rates have now been linked. “Given that the core sector was also in negative territory this , is no surprise. But even this figure does not take into account the drop in output in the informal sector. The actual final growth figures may be far worse,” said Prof Arun Kumar of the Institute of Social Sciences and formerly of JNU. The manufacturing sector, which contributes 77% to the IIP , showed a 1.2% drop in output against a 5.2% growth a year ago. “It appears pre-stocking due to festive demand in September and October has not taken place. Going forward, the IIP is likely to show erratic, low growth trends,” said Devendra Kumar Pant, chief economist at India Ratings & Research. EXPRESS READ Infant succumbs to dengue at SRMC Chennai: An 11-month-old boy from Tiruvallur district succumbed to dengue on Friday. According to sources, Nishanth from Maruthavallipuram, who was suffering from fever for the past one week, was initially treated at a Primary Health Centre and admitted to Sri Ramachandra hospital at Porur on Wednesday, where he succumbed. According to Health department officials, over 3,000 cases have been reported in the State so far. Saxophone maestro Kadri Gopalnath dead Mangaluru: Renowned saxophone exponent Kadri Gopalnath died at a private hospital here early on Friday, family sources said. Gopalnath, 69, had been ailing for some time. He leaves his wife, two sons and a daughter. He was a Padma Shree awardee and one of the pioneers of music in saxophone in the country | P8 national visions with Xi saying he was looking forward to working closely with Modi. A reference to Bodhi Dharma, a Pallava prince from Kanchipuram who renounced the throne, became a Buddhist monk and was India’s first spiritual ambassador to China, where he was called DaMo, also came up during the mutual interactions. Modi brought up concerns over the ballooning bilateral trade deficit and other economic issues. The menace of terror was another issue both sides discussed at length. “There was an acknowledgement that both the countries are very complex and very diverse. The two leaders said that these are large countries and that radicalisation is a matter of concern to both and that both would work together so that radicalisation and terrorism did not affect our multicultural, multi-ethnic multireligious societies,” he said. They are expected to discuss international issues on Saturday. Modi presented a Nachiyarkoil Annam lamp and a Thanjavur painting to Xi. Unnao case: No murder charge against BJP MP New Delhi: The CBI on Friday filed a charge sheet against former BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar and his associates for criminal conspiracy and intimidation but dropped murder charges against them in the Unnao rape victim accident case in which two aunts of the girl were killed, officials said. The CBI in its FIR had booked Sengar and nine others under IPC sections related to criminal conspiracy, murder, attempt to murder and criminal intimidation | P11 Post-paid services in Kashmir from today EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Srinagar POST-PAID mobile services in Kashmir are likely to resume from Saturday 68 days , after they were shut down following the Centre’s decision to abrogate Jammu and Kashmir’s special status, officials said on Friday . However, they made it clear that the subscribers will have to wait for some more time for the internet services to resume in the valley. The officials said a decision has been taken that postpaid mobile services will be resumed in the beginning and the pre-paid services will be resumed later. They have also stressed that a proper verification of customers will be undertaken for postpaid mobile services. The move comes barely two days after the Centre issued an advisory opening the valley for tourists. Travel association bodies had approached the administration, saying that no tourist would like to come to the valley where mobile phones don’t work. The mobile services in Jammu and Kashmir were shut down on August 5 after the Centre announced in New Delhi the abrogation of the special status guaranteed to the state under Article 370 of the Constitution. The valley has nearly 66 lakh mobile subscribers out of which nearly 40 lakh subscribers have post-paid facilities. Partial fixed land line telephone services resumed in the valley on August 17, and by September 4 all landlines, numbering nearly 50,000, were declared operational.
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.
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