nagapattinam l wednesday l may 18, 2022 l `9.00 l PAGES 12 l city EDITION all green card petitions to get processed in 6 months? An advisory panel has voted to recommend the US president that all green card applications be processed in six months will push for streamlining of process could benefit thousands of Indians The President’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders (PACAANHPI) has recommended that the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) remove redundant steps, introduce automation wherever possible and improve its internal dashboards and reporting systems to speed up the process ■ ■ Additionally, the panel will recommend that the National Visa Center, which schedules and conducts visa interviews, double its human resource capacity over the next three months The proposals, if adopted, may benefit thousands of Indians, some of whom have been waiting for decades to get green card 4,21,358 pending interviews in april. only 65K family green cards issued in 2021 CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA ■ BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOgGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR ■ KALABURAGI Protect ‘Linga’, Wholesale inflation at record high of 15% let Muslims free entry to pray: SC The Gyanvapi mosque in Varanasi that is in the eye of a storm | PTI 3.68% 0.00% Apr 2022 Oct 2021 Apr 2021 -1.57% Apr 2020 Apr 2019 Oct 2018 Oct 2017 Apr 2017 Oct 2016 -1.9% Apr 2016 Oct 2015 Apr 2015 -4.76% 1.31% 3.62% 0.87% -3.42% 3.24% Oct 2020 1.27% Apr 2018 3.72% 10.74% 5.54% 3.85% Just a few days ago, retail inflation data registered an eightyear high at 7.79% in April. In a bid to tame inflation, the RBI this month raised the repo rate by 40 basis points to 4.4% and cash reserve ratio by 0.5%. Meanwhile, days after the Union commerce ministry banned wheat exports, on Tuesday it gave some relaxation to consignments registered with the customs on or before May 13. It also allowed a wheat consignment headed for Egypt, which was already under loading at the Kandla port. “The order served three main purposes: ensure India’s food security and check inflation, it helps other countries facing food deficit, and it maintains India’s reliability as a supplier. The order also aimed to provide a clear direction to the wheat market to prevent hoarding,” the Centre said in a statement. “Ajay Kumar Mishra performed his duties as advocate commissioner very irresponsibly. A probe shows that a private photographer was engaged by him and he kept giving media bytes that were totally against judicial decorum,” trial court judge Ravi Kumar Diwakar said Mishra for engaging a private cameraman for the Gyanvapi survey who went about leaking information to the media in flagrant violation of the confidentiality mandate. It was special advocate commissioner Vishal Singh who outed Mishra’s lensman R P Singh leaking the survey’s proceedings. Singh has now been tasked with submitting the survey report and granted two days to do so. Meanwhile, a couple of fresh petitions were filed seeking permission to perform puja of the ‘Shivalinga’ besides ordering demolition of walls of the basements on the premises and removal of debris for collection of more evidence. A CBI official gestures to the media during a raid at former Union Minister P Chidambaram’s residence in Chennai on Tuesday | R Satish Babu Karti got `50 lakh from Vedanta Group: ED According to the FIR, Advantage Strategic Consulting, a company linked to Karti, got `50 lakh from the Vedanta Group to organise visas for 263 Chinese nationals in 2011, when P Chidambaram was Union home minister. The visas were meant to help expedite the delayed power project. Vedanta’s offer was made through a chartered accountant S Bhakararaman. The ED’s case is based on, among other things, the emails it retrieved from Bhakararaman’s laptop. His residence and offices were also raided by the sleuths alongside Karti’s bungalow in Delhi’s Lodhi Estate Keeping up the pressure on senior Congress leader and former finance minister P Chidambaram, the CBI on Tuesday conducted raids and searches at his son Karti’s residence and office premises across nine cities, in a fresh case relating to alleged acceptance of `50 lakh bribe for facilitating visas for Chinese employees working for a power project in Punjab. The raids were carried out at Chidambarams’ properties in Chennai, Mumbai, Koppal (Karnataka), Mansa (Punjab) and Jharsuguda (Odisha), CBI sources said, even as the agency was wary of disclosing the nature of documents it seized in the course of its operations. Chidambaram’s son Karti is alleged to have taken the bribe in 2011 for facilitating visas for about 300 the Chinese employees working at the Talwandi Sabo Power Project in Punjab. A super-critical 1,980 MW thermal power project, the Talwandi Sabo plant is located at Banawala in Punjab’s Mansa district. This is the second time Karti has come under the CBI’s scanner. He was previously probed in the Aircel-Maxis and the INX Media cases. Karti was arrested in 2018 in the INX Media case. This was followed a year later with the CBI arresting Chidambaram. According to the FIR, Karti accepted a gratification of `50 lakh for facilitating visas for the Chinese nationals. The money was allegedly sent to an account of one of Karti’s companies to “devise a back door way to defeat the home ministry ceiling on visa”. E x p r e ss N e w s S e r v i c e @ Madurai dancing to their own tune A flamboyance of flamingos spotted on the marshland in Pallikaranai on Tuesday | Ashwin prasath HC: Vadagalai can sing in Kanchi temple R S IVAKU M AR @ Chennai Stressing that the religious right guaranteed by the Constitution shall be extended to all without discrimination or denial, the Madras High Court on Tuesday ordered the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) department to allow members of the Vadagalai sect to chant Ramanuja Dayapathram just after the Thengalai sect commenced its initial recital at the Varadarajaperumal temple in Kancheepuram. Justice SM Subramaniam passed the interim order on a petition filed by S Narayanan, of Kancheepuram, belonging to the Vadagalai sect, after a battery of senior counsels presented arguments for about twoand-a-half hours. The Thengalai sect can take the first two or three rows in the tem- ple, and behind them, the Vadagalai sect and ordinary devotees shall be permitted, the judge said in the order. “The Thengalai sect shall be permitted to commence their initial recital namely Srisaila Dayapathram, and thereafter, Vadagalai sect shall be permitted to chant initial recital namely Sri Ramanuja Dayapathram within 10 to 12 seconds each,” he added. Continued on: P2 Chennai: The Idol Wing CID arrested two people in Chennai on Monday for illegally possessing and attempting to sell an antique emerald Shivalinga worth `25 crore. It was fixed on a metal naagabharanam (snake ornament). The police recovered the lingam and the ornament. Two other people involved in the case are on the run | P2 Four wanted in the 1993 Mumbai blasts arrested Ahmedabad: The Gujarat Anti Terrorist Squad has arrested four persons wanted in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case, officials said on Tuesday. Abu Bakar, Saiyad Qureshi, Mohammad Shoeb Qureshi alias Shoeb Bawa and Mohammad Yusuf Ismail alias Yusuf Bhatka, all residents of Mumbai, were on the run for 29 years, they said | p8 heavy rains lash assam Landslides and floods have breached embankments at 16 locations, cut off rail and road links in Assam, affecting close to two lakh people in 20 districts | P8 E x p r e ss N e w s S e r v i c e @ New Delhi ‘Totally against judicial decorum’ 2 held over bid to sell L25cr emerald lingam 7 killed CBI raids premises of PC, karti in cash-for-visa case Can’t impound driving licence, HC tells cops Regional Transport Officers and police officers in Tamil Nadu do not have the power to impound a person’s driving licence and can only take steps to cancel it, the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court said recently while hearing a petition filed by K Perumal, a Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (TNSTC) driver. Following an accident in Virudhunagar on April 2 this year, the Vembakottai police registered an FIR against Perumal and seized his driving licence. The document was later handed over to the Virudhunagar Regional Transport Officer. As Perumal’s representation to the authorities to return his licence went in vain, he approached the court. Justice Krishnan Ramasamy said the authorities only have the power to cancel a person’s licence under certain circumstances. The authorities seized the licence without issuing any show-cause notice to the petitioner, the judge said, and directed them to return the licence within a week. 15.08% 13.83% Oct 2019 6.70% 5.06% Oct 2014 The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed that the area where a ‘Shivalinga’ was indicated to have been found in the Gyanvapi mosque in Varanasi a day ago should be fully protected, but the rights of Muslims to enter and offer prayers must not be infringed. The court was hearing a petition challenging a Allahabad High Court order that had permitted the inspection and videography of the premises. “In order to obviate any dispute on the meaning and content of the order of the trial judge, the operation and ambit of the order dated 16 May 2022 shall stand restricted to the extent that the District Magistrate, Varanasi shall ensure that the area where the Shivalinga is stated to have been found, as indicated in the order, shall be duly protected. The above direction shall not in any manner restrain or impede the access of Muslims to the mosque or the use of the mosque for the purpose of performing namaz and religious observance,” a bench led by Justice D Y Chandrachud said in its interim order. Senior advocate Hufeza Ahmadi, appearing for the Anjuman Islamia Masjid Committee, sought a stay in the trial court’s proceedings in Varanasi. “The order (to seal the wuzu khana where the Shivalinga was said to have been found) was passed ex-parte without serving to us...What was the tearing hurry the way the premises was sealed?” he asked. However, the bench refused to issue a stay order. The court issued notices to the petitioners and the UP government and posted the matter for next hearing on May 19. In Varanasi, trial court judge Ravi Kumar Diwakar sacked his court-appointed advocate commissioner Ajay Kumar policy committee may frontload rates by another 25-50 basis points. FY23 could thus further see rates going up by 100-125 basis points, with the RBI now showing its intent to keep real rates above neutral,” said Madhavi Arora, lead economist at Emkay Global Financial Services. making sense of WPI peak y-o-y (%) Oct 2013 P r at h m a S h a r m a a n d N a m i ta B a j pa i @ New Delhi/Lucknow Apr 2014 Advocate commissioner leading survey of Gyanvapi sacked; 2 more days to file report India’s wholesale price-based inflation jumped to an all-time high of 15.08% due to acrossthe-board rise in prices, including those of food and fuel. Continuous high inflation — both retail and wholesale — would further put pressure on the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to hike interest rates in its June monetary policy . The WPI inflation has been in double digits perpetually for the last 13 months. Overall inflation in food articles was recorded at 8.35%. In the food basket, the highest inflation was observed in the items like vegetables, potato, fruits and wheat at 23.24%, 19.84%, 10.89% and 10.70%, respectively Crude pe. troleum and natural gas rose by 69.07% year-on-year, while petrol witnessed a surge in prices by 60.63%. In the fuel and power baskets, inflation stood at 38.66%, whereas in manufactured products it was 10.85% and oil seeds 16.10%. Also, oore inflation accelerated for the third consecutive month to 11.1 per cent from 10.9 per cent in March 2022. “We see June’s policy to be super-live, and the monetary Apr 2013 M o n i k a Ya d a v @ New Delhi e x p r e ss r e a d Planning CCI-like entity, will buy cotton in bulk, says TN minister V a i t h e e s w a r a n B @ Ranipet TN gets just 5 lakh bales from CCI CCI procures 120 lakh bales of cotton a year, but TN gets just five lakh bales. Tamil Nadu buys cotton from CCI godowns in Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. The State government is planning to establish a Cotton Corporation of India-like entity to reduce Tamil Nadu’s dependency on other States and procure cotton directly from farmers across the State, Handloom and Textiles Minister R Gandhi told TNIE on Tuesday . As per the instructions of Chief Minister MK Stalin we are working on feasibility and financial resources needed,the minister said. Amid unsustainable yarn prices and textile units across the State going on a two-day lockdown against spiralling prices, the Ranipet MLA told TNIE, “CCI procures 120 lakh bales of cotton a year, but Tamil Nadu gets just five lakh bales. Tamil Nadu buys cotton from CCI godowns in Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. “ Tamil Nadu Spinning Mills Association special advisor Dr Venkatachalam said that he made the proposal to TN government to establish a CCI-like entity when the cotton price was R65,000 /per candy now it has touched R1.17 lakh / candy . As of April 30, Tamil Nadu faced a shortage of 2,25,000 bales of cotton arrival in 202122 compared to 2020-21. The minister also said efforts are one to increase cotton cultivation area in the State. P4
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