VILLUPURAM SATURDAY JULY 25, 2020 `7.00 PAGES 12 CITY EDITION NEW E-COMMERCE RULES TO IMPROVE ONLINE SHOPPING The Centre on Friday notified the new rules under Consumer Protection Act, 2019 to protect the rights of customers GRIEVANCE REDRESSAL WITHIN A MONTH As per new rules, all e-commerce platforms must have a proper consumer redressal mechanism in place. They must appoint a grievance officer to take care of complaints, and display his/her name and contact details on their websites. Once a consumer files a complaint, a receipt has to be issued within 48 hours, and a suitable action must be taken within a month ■ $200 bn NO CANCELLATION CHARGES ■ To facilitate easy return of products, e-tailers must display detailed information on return/exchange processes as well as details of sellers, including their contact numbers and addresses E-tailers must not levy any cancellation charges from customers, unless they also bear charges for cancellations initiated by them WILL BE SIZE OF INDIA’S E-COMMERCE MARKET BY 2027: STATISTA 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 Gehlot closer to endgame, Guv OK with session Bad loans could balloon to their highest in 2 decades, warns RBI THE political showdown in Rajasthan shifted to Raj Bhawan on Friday with Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot demanding that Governor Kalraj Mishra call the Assembly session immediately for a confidence vote. By extension, Gehlot wants to smoke out the rebellion of 19 party lawmakers led by Sachin Pilot, shutting out all escape routes from disqualification, as the whip comes into play in the Assembly . Confident about his numbers, Gehlot pressured the Governor to convene the House and brought in busloads of MLAs to stage a dharna at Raj Bhawan. The dharna ended around 8 pm after the Governor assured he will act on the request but wanted some queries answered. The state Cabinet later met to address the queries. “With an open heart, the Gov- LAC FACE-OFF Fresh meet of Corps Commanders lined up PUSHKAR BANAKAR AND M AYA N K S I N G H @ New Delhi INDIA and China on Friday agreed that early and complete disengagement and deescalation along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) was essential for the smooth development of bilateral ties, and decided to hold another commander-level talks to work out the steps to achieve it. The decision was taken at a meeting of the 17th Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination (WMCC) on India-China Border Affairs. While the ministry of external affairs said that a meeting of senior commanders may be held, army sources said it would be at the Corps Commander level. The two sides are in discussions to finalise a date for the meeting. A statement from the ministry of exter nal affairs said, “The two sides agreed that another meeting of the senior commanders may be held soon so as to work out further steps to ensure expeditiously complete disengagement and deescalation and restoration of peace and tranquility in the border areas.” The Indian delegation at the WMCC meeting—the third since the June 15 violent face-off—was led by Joint Secretary (East Asia) Naveen Srivastava, while the Chinese delegation was headed by Hong Liang, the Director General of the Boundary and Oceanic Department of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The two sides also agreed to maintain their ongoing engagements both at the diplomatic and military level, including through the meetings of WMCC. ernor said he will abide by the Constitution without pressure and ill-will. He said that he has sent some directives to the CM and if gets a satisfactory response, he will be bound by Article 174 of the Constitution to call the session. We have full faith in him,” said Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala. The nice words were in sharp contrast to the drama earlier in the day, when Gehlot accused the Governor of sitting on his request perhaps due to pressure from the top. Alleging a BJP conspiracy behind the delay, he asserted, “we wrote to him yesterday requesting early convening of the session and waited all night, but there was no response. It is beyond comprehension what kind of forces would compel the Governor to delay such a simple process.” Gehlot went on to say, “the entire state is with us. People are with us. If the masses sur- Video grab of Rajasthan Governor Kalraj Mishra interacting with Congress MLAs demanding an urgent Assembly session, at Raj Bhawan in Jaipur on Friday | PTI Bound by Cabinet advice Adhir on desertion The Governor has no option but to accept the recommendation of the chief minister to convene the Assembly session, legal experts said, adding he is duty-bound to follow the advice of the Cabinet Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said a section of young overambitious leaders were deserting the party as they feel it is not going to return to power at the Centre anytime soon round the Raj Bhawan in protest, we will not be responsible,” drawing a sharp response from the BJP . Earlier in the day, the Rajasthan High Court asked Assembly Speaker C P Joshi to maintain status quo and not to act against the rebels till further orders. And the Supreme Court has adjourned Joshi’s petition challenging the HC’s earlier directive on his disqualifi- cation notices to the rebels, for further hearing on Monday . In Delhi, senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal shared his anguish that even high courts are not acting according to Constitutional bench judgments. “If judges of high courts are not going to follow orders laid down by five judges of the Supreme Court, then I might as well take off my robes,” he remarked. 12.5 13.5 14.2 14.7 11.3 Actual Baseline Medium stress Severe stress Very severe stress 3.9 4.5 5.1 5.8 7.3 7.7 8.3 8.7 8.5 (Numbers in %) 2.3 RAJESH ASNANI & RICHA S H A R M A @ Jaipur/New Delhi Projection of NPA ratios 4.2 Sends queries to CM on convening House after dramatic protests by Cong lawmakers THE economic stress induced by Covid-19 could push gross bad loans to their highest in nearly two decades, the Financial Stability Report (FSR) for July by the Reserve Bank of India revealed on Friday . Admitting that the loan moratorium scheme has suppressed the real stress on Indian banks, RBI governor Shaktikanta Das, war ned banks to remain extremely watchful and focussed in the foreword of the FSR report, which paints a very gloomy picture for the Indian banking sector, at least in the immediate future. In a “very severe stressed scenario”, the gross non-performing assets of the banking sector could rise to as high as 14.7% of total loans by March 2021, the report said after stress testing of 53 scheduled commercial banks. It added that even under the baseline scenario, the gross NPA ratio could rise to 12.5%. The gross NPA ratio stood at 8.5% as of March 2020. The last time it was as low was in March 2000, when the gross NPA ratio was reported at a whopping 12.7%. As expected, the report said 15.2 15.5 15.9 16.3 A N U R A D H A S H U K L A @ New Delhi Mar 20 Mar 21 Public sector banks Mar 20 Mar 21 Mar 20 Private sector banks public sector banks are likely to be the worst hit, which could see their gross NPAs rise to 15.2% by March 2021 from 11.3% a year earlier in the baseline scenario. The report warned that on account of the worsening macroeconomic factors, even private banks and foreign banks would see a spike in bad loans. Sectors with the highest share of “good quality loans” that might get affected, include general purpose loans by non-banking finance companies, generation of electricity NBFCs in the housing sec, tor and development financial institutions. Mar 21 Foreign banks Mar 20 Mar 21 All scheduled commercial banks And with banks required to provide more against defaulters, the report warned of erosion of capital, saying systemlevel capital adequacy ratio could drop to 13.3% under the baseline scenario, and to 11.8% in very severe stress, by March 2021. “Stress test results indicate that five banks may fail to meet the minimum capital level by March 2021 in a very severe stress scenario. This, however, does not take into account the mergers or any further recapitalisation, which will further increase systemic resilience,” the RBI said, without naming the banks. EPS dubs draping of WHOPPING 6,785 NEW CASES IN TN saffron shawl on MGR statue a barbaric act EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Chennai EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Chennai COMING down heavily on those who draped a saffron shawl around the for mer Chief Minister MG Ramachandran’s statue in Puducherry, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on F rid ay dubbed the “desecration” a barbaric act and urged Puducherry CM V Narayanasamy to expedite steps to bring the miscreants to book. “The desecration of MGR statue deeply pains us. This happened in the land where great spiritual leader Sri Aurobindo and poet Bharathidasan lived,” Palaniswami said in a statement. It is to be noted that a few days back, saffron paint was thrown on a statue of Periyar in Coimbatore, causing uproar across Tamil Nadu. “Hurting others’ sentiments on the pretext of exercising freedom of speech is against human decency Tam. ils will never accept evil designs of a few who plan to threaten the unity and integrity of our country,” he said without naming any person or organisation. ‘Tamils won’t accept their evil design’ “Hurting others’ sentiments on the pretext of exercising freedom of speech is against human decency. Tamils will never accept evil designs of a few who plan to threaten the unity and integrity of our country,” Chief Minister Palaniwami said on Friday without naming any person or organisation On Thursday AIADMK cad, re informed the party legislators attending the Assembly session of the incident. Even as AIADMK legislature party leader A Anbazhagan and MLA Vaiyapuri Manikandan rushed to the spot, party functionaries gathered and staged a dharna. CONTINUING the trend, the State again recorded its highest single-day spike with 6,785 new Covid-19 cases, on Friday . As many as 88 people succumbed to the infection on the day taking the toll to 3,320. , Chennai alone recorded 1,299 positive cases and remained stable, while its neighbouring districts of Chengalpet, Kanchee puram and Tiruvallur recorded 419, 349 and 378 cases respectively Af. ter Chennai, Virudhunagar topped the State list on Friday with 424 cases. According to a bulletin issued by the Directorate of Public Health, the State tested a whopping 65,150 samples from 63,182 people on the day . Also 6,504 people who recovered from the infection were discharged from hospitals. Chief Secretary K Shanmugam on Friday held discussions with Collectors of all districts, except Chennai. The meeting assumes significance STATE TOLL TODAY 3,320 88 EXPRESS READ Sonia tries to reclaim P V Narasimha Rao’s legacy Hyderabad: Cogress president Sonia Gandhi on Friday called Prime Minister P V Narasimha Rao a dedicated Congress leader and said the grand old party takes pride in his accomplishments and contribution. Her statement was read out by Telangana Congress President Uttam Reddy at the launch of a year-long birth centenary celebrations of Rao on Friday China orders closure of US Consulate in Chengdu Covid-19 recovery rate at a new high of 63.45% Beijing: In a tit-for-tat action, China on Friday ordered the US to close down its consulate in Chengdu two days after Washington’s decision to shut the Chinese mission in Houston, further straining the already tense bilateral ties | P9 New Delhi: As many as 34,602 Covid-19 patients in India recovered from the disease on Friday, pushing the recovery rate to 63.45 per cent. The recovery rate has gone up for the third day in a row. Also, the death rate has gone down to 2.38 per cent KITH, KIN & KHAKI Cops pool in `14 lakh to help colleague’s son S A H AYA N O V I N S T O N L O B O @ Chennai WORDS would not describe the shock and pain 14-year-old Hari experienced when his parents abruptly disappeared from his life. Months after his mother died of a prolonged illness, his father, depressed with sudden turn of events, ended his life on June 25, leaving him alone. Today his father’s colleagues and friends have come together to do the little they can for the teenager -- contribute some money to sustain his education and begin a new life. Hari’s father Durai Murugan was a police constable of the 1999 batch. Over 3,000 men and women from his batch have pooled together `13.91 lakh for Hari. “Durai Murugan used to work at the Minjur police station,” recalls Vasu Devan. “He was a close friend. We have been together since our training in 1999. I was with him during his wedding, and when his son was born. Eventually our families became friends too.” Vasu Devan says Durai was disturbed ever since his wife died. “We tried our best to help him, but it did not work.” Now, Hari, a class 9 student, is all alone. His uncle’s family has taken him in, but his financial future is still unstable. “It takes about a year for the pension money to arrive. So we pooled in resources for the boy .” Vasu says all of his batch mates are on Whatsapp, and are scattered across some 60-odd groups. “I sent a message and everybody started sending money,” says head constable Sabari, who is the admin for all these groups. Of the collected money, `12 lakh has been deposited into an insurance scheme, so that Hari will have a substantial sum when he needs it for college expenses. The balance has been handed over to Hari, for current educational expenses. Hari is not the first person. The batch has come to the help of 17 of their members so far. The efforts are not just to pool money but also , provide social support. as the number of positive cases are going up in several districts and the current phase of lockdown is ending within a week. Meanwhile, Health Minister C Vijayabaskar and Health Secretary J Radhakrishnan inspected oxygen tank construction work at Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital campus. Nine out of the Chennai city corporation’s 15 zones are now free of barricades, as the number of containment areas in the city has dropped from 230 to 62 in the last one month. ‘Govt following WHO guidelines to declare toll’ Minister R B Udhayakumar, on Friday, said WHO protocols were being followed in declaring Covid deaths in TN. He was responding to DMK chief MK Stalin’s allegations that government was hiding the actual Covid toll | P4 Independence Day to be a quiet affair this year In view of the Covid pandemic, a large gathering will not be allowed at Fort St George for Independence Day celebrations this year. Covid-19 warriors would be honoured on the day | P4 Parties ‘tired’ of LG-CM conflict in Puducherry D E B J A N I D U T TA @ Puducherry THE Puducherry Assembly witnessed intense drama on Friday when legislators of the , ruling and Opposition parties sprung up in protests minutes after Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi began her inaugural address at the Budget Session, a good four days after the budget was presented in the House. The irony of the delayed address was not lost on the legislators present. After Tamizh Thaai Vaazhthu recital, Bedi rose to give her address. She was invited to do so by the Speaker and the Chief Minister. However, even as she began, Health Minister Malladi Krishna Rao, CM’s Parliamentary Secretary K Lakshminarayanan, Government Whip RKR Aanantharaman and MLA T Jayamurthy staged a walkout. Rao returned after some time, wearing black mask and towel as symbols of protest. Expressing solidarity with the doctors who have been demanding an apology from Bedi -- who is alleged to have demeaned a senior practitioner -- Rao condemned Bedi for not granting the said doctor an appointment to discuss government decisions. “Her decisions in the fishermen’s pension issue is also against the people’s welfare,” charged Rao. Soon after, those who left with Rao returned, wearing black shirts. They took offence to Bedi’s alleged statement that, “some legislators need to visit a clinical psychologist.” “She has no right to comment on our mental health,” said Lakshminarayanan. “We enjoy the immunity to freely speak in the Assembly.” Alleging that the L-G has been stalling schemes for the last four years, Anantharaman said, “As an administrator, she knows Puducherry’s financial situation very well. But even during the Covid crisis she is not ready to seek any funds from the Centre. Not approving the budget and commenting on MLAs’ mental health is the last nail in the coffin.” Bedi managed to finish her speech despite all the protests. When the Speaker rose to read Tamil translation of the speech, the AIADMK legislators stood up and protested. P3
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