tuesDAY 13 october, 2020 7 epaper.morningstandard.in facebook.com/TheMorningStandard twitter.com/TheMornStandard Out of 11 Nobel laureates this year have been Americans saving lives Formats to solve Auctions MASKS CAN SAVE 1.32 lakh lives The humble mask can bring down Covid deaths by nearly 37% in India, says a report Page 7 A CAPITAL VIEW OF NEWS l New Delhi l J8.00 l PAGES 12 The Stanford University game theorists have helped develop formats for the sale of aircraft landing slots, radio spectrums. P9 Robert B Wilson Paul R Milgrom 2 Stanford economists win Nobel for auction theory Milgrom & Wilson worked on improving the theory of how auctions work and inventing new formats Realising ‘private value’ of objects Milgrom, 72, developed a more general theory of auctions that takes into account the ‘private value’ of what’s being sold that can vary greatly from bidder to bidder Plea in SC against Jagan over press meet against top judge Express N e ws Se rvi ce @ New Delhi Family members of the Hathras victim leave the HC on Monday | PTI HC raps police on Hathras cremation Days after Andhra CM Jagan Mohan Reddy wrote to the Chief Justice of India complaining about Supreme Court judge N V Ramana and certain judges in the Andhra High Court in the context of the Amaravati land scam, a plea was filed on Monday against Jagan before the apex court. Ajeya Kallam, principal advisor to the CM, released cop- ies of the letter at a recent press conference. Advocate Sunil Kumar Singh, who filed the plea, said such press briefings against judges should stop. He also sought a show cause notice against Jagan asking why suitable action should not be taken against him. “The act and deed of the respondent is an attempt to tarnish the majesty of the highest court of the country the plea ,” stated. The petitioner contend- D EL H I C O VI D W A T C H status of cases Recovered Death Active cases Positive cases Today 2,975 40 -- 1,849 Cumulative 2,84,844 5,809 20,535 3,00,833 Patient Management Total beds Occupied Vacant Hospital 16,118 5,151 10,967 Care centre 8,137 877 6,297* Health centre 527 273 254 Home Isolation: 12,385 *963 beds of CCC are occupied by persons under quarantine including travellers who came by Vande Bharat Mission and bubble flights Testing Status 10,260 RTPCR/CBNAAT/ TrueNat tests conducted 36,59,366 tests done so far 25,687 Rapid antigen test conducted in the city 1,92,598 Tests per million n Containment zones as on date: 2734 n received in control room: 594 Calls Source: Delhi health bulletin | Data for Oct 12 preme Court or the High Court in the discharge of his duty .” Further, it is averred that freedom of speech and expression guaranteed under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution is subject to reasonable restrictions in relation to contempt of courts and defamation. “In the society of today, where the discussion in the media and on social media can go wild within days or within hours, it can affect the image of judiciary and hence the confidence of the general public in the judiciary the plea read. ,” It said the CM is under oath and allegiance of the Constitution and is thus bound by it to respect the judiciary . In his letter to Chief Justice of India S A Bobde, Jagan had alleged that some high court judges were attempting to pro- tect the interests of the opposition Telugu Desom Party in politically sensitive matters. Meanwhile, the Andhra Pradesh High Court on Monday directed the CBI to probe recent social media posts against its judges and the judiciary to unravel the conspiracy , if it exists. The court asked the CBI to take action against any person irrespective of their position, if the conspiracy angle is established. Govt opens purse strings further to make you spend N a m i ta B a j pa i @ Lucknow Bitterly criticising the cremation of the alleged gang-rape and murder victim of Hathras in the dead of night, her family questioned the intent of the district administration and expressed anguish over the insensitive approach of the district magistrate (DM), while appearing before the Lucknow bench of Allahabad High Court here on Monday . For his part, Hathras DM Praveen Kumar Laxkar owned up the cremation, claiming it was his individual decision to proceed with it so as to avert any possible caste flare-up in the village and the district. According to the family’s lawyer Seema Kushwaha, the division bench pilloried the police on the hurried cremation, asking if they would do it had the victim hailed from a rich family . The court had taken suo-motu cognisance of the issue on October 1. Five members of the victim’s family, including her father, brothers, mother and sister-in-law, were brought from Hathras amid tight security to the court. , Having labelled the petition “respectful disposal and last rites of a deceased,” the court provided a patient hearing to the victim’s family It also ap. pointed senior advocate J N Mathur and Abhinav BhattchP7 arya as amicus curiae. ed that Jagan had crossed all limits prescribed by the Constitution. “As per the Constitution of India as provided under Article(s) 121 and 211 of the Indian Constitution it has been mandated that no discussion shall take place in Parliament or in state legislature with respect to the conduct of any judge of Su- Centre plays hardball, GST meet inconclusive Centre to invest `25,000 cr more on infra; states to get `12,000 crore interest-free loan; LTC cash vouchers for govt staff to buy white goods An u r a d h a S h u k l a @ New Delhi Actor Khushboo joins the BJP in New Delhi on Monday | pARVEEN NEGI BJP’s South plan gets Khushboo acceptability . BJP national general secreAs former Congress spokes- tary and Karnataka legislaperson Khushboo Sundar tor C T Ravi in the presence joined its ranks on Monday, of the Tamil Nadu party unit the BJP looks to revive its chief L Murugan handed Mission South which has over the membership slips to been a non-starter since its Sundar, Ravichandran and launch in 2017. Kumar. “My expectation from BJP Sundar, who had been a voisn’t about what party is go- cal critic of the BJP and PM ing to do for me, but about Narendra Modi, said that she what party is going would take up any to do for people of responsibility given No leaders the country the ac,” by the party. She tor-tur ned-politi- Though the plan reasoned that she was floated in cian said after joinjoined the BJP, be2017, the BJP ing the BJP . cause she felt that After roping in didn’t make much Modi can only take progress former IPS officer K the country in the Annamalai, the BJP principally for the right direction. reason that the inducted Sundar With the BJP findalong with Madan party lacked mass ing it a daunting leaders in the Ravichandran and task to find space in southern region former IRS officer Tamil Nadu, while Sarvana Kumar. carrying the Hindi With the BJP set to gain label, it is pinning hope on new strength in the Rajya the political imports to gain Sabha with the upcoming the foothold. elections for vacancies, inWith new set of officer cluding 10 from Uttar Pradesh bearers unveiled by Nadda, where the party will bag the the party is seeking to give a lion’s share, it will be looking fresh push to former BJP for prominent faces in the Amit Shah’s “Mission South” southern states, particularly to make a space among the Tamil Nadu due to Assembly dominant regional outfits in P7 elections next year, to gain the southern states. express news service @ New Delhi AFTER five hours of intense engagement, the GST Council on Monday failed to settle the dispute over the compensation issue as the Centre refused to borrow on behalf of states to meet the revenue shortfall. Sources said 10 non-BJP states rejected the finance ministry’s proposal that state governments borrow to meet the revenue shortfall and demanded a Group of Ministers be formed to settle the dispute. This was the third meeting in a row that discussed compensation shor tfall without a decision. However, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, who chaired the 43rd GST Council meeting through video-conferencing, claimed there was no dispute but only differences of opinion “I explained very clearly why the Centre cannot borrow. The Centre has issued a borrowing calendar. If I go beyond that to borrow, the G-Sec deals which are used as the benchmark for every other borrowing will go up. This will increase borrowing costs for states and the private sector, too,” she told reporters after the meeting. The FM added that the 20plus states that had opted to borrow to meet the GST revenue shortfall wanted to go ahead in view of the upcoming festive season. There was no immediate comment on the government’s next move. An u r a d h a S h u k l a @ New Delhi FINANCE Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday announced a slew of measures to boost spending. These include `25,000 crore additional capital expenditure by the Centre, `12,000 crore interest-free loan for states to spend on infrastructure, cash vouchers in place of leave travel concession and a one-time interest-free festival advance of `10,000 each to government and PSU staff. States can repay the loan in one bullet payment after 50 years. Out of the `12,000 crore loan, north-eastern states will get `1,600 crore, while Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh will receive `450 crore each. Rest of the states will get their share from `7,500 crore, in accordance with the devolution formula used by the Finance Commission. The remaining `2,000 crore will be given to states that fulfil reforms prescribed in the Atmanirbhar package, such as power distribution reforms, implementation of one-nation-oneration card scheme etc. “The loan will have to be spent entirely on new or ongoing capital projects, (and) can be used to settle bills of contractors and suppliers but all the amount has to be paid before March 31, 2021,” Sitharaman said. The `25,000 crore additional capital expenditure will be spent on building roads, ports and defence projects. Government employees can use the LTC cash vouchers to buy goods worth three times the Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur address the GST Council meeting in New Delhi on Monday | PTI Retail inflation up, industrial output drops Rising food prices pushed retail inflation to an eight-month high of 7.34% in September, above the RBI’s comfort level, while industrial output contract 8% in August, official data showed on Monday. The heightened retail inflation ahead of the festive season dims chances of a rate cut by the Reserve Bank of India to boost growth hit by the coronavirus pandemic and the resultant lockdowns travel fare and one time the leave encashment before March 31, 2021. The condition is the goods should attract a GST of 12% or more. “Only digital transactions are allowed, GST invoice has to be produced,” the FM said, adding this will boost sales of electric appliances and consumer durables. The one-time `10,000 festival advance to central government employees will be given as a Rupay card, whose cost will be borne by the Centre. The government had earlier discontinued the practice of offering festival advances, which were then meant only for junior employees. This time, however, it will be for all employees, regardless of their rank. “Government employees and organised sector workers have escaped the economic effects of the pandemic. Their salaries are protected and savings have increased. They need to be incentivised to spend,” Sitharaman said, adding that through these measures, there could be an estimated `1 lakh crore boost to consumer spending, but in a fiscally prudent way, without any requirement of extra borrowing. According to her, the estimated cost of LTC cash voucher scheme for the central government is `5,675 crore for PSBs and for PSUs it is `1,900 crore, while advance payment will have no impact as it will be repaid in 10 instalments. Delhi govt wants authority of hospitals from MCDs, forget it, say civic bodies S o m r i ta G h os h @ New Delhi The Delhi gover nment on Monday wrote to the commissioners of three civic bodies to hand over the hospitals under them to the state authorities over the pending salaries to doctors and paramedical staff. The civic bodies reacted strongly, saying the Delhi government doesn’t have the right to write such a letter as the state has not released the funds allotted to the civic bodies. The doctors and other staff of hospitals working under the jurisdiction of North Delhi Municipal Cor poration have threatened to suspend work over non-payment of their salaries. The government’s letter written by the Additional Director (Local bodies) of Urban Development Department took up the wage issue at the Hindu Rao and Kasturba hospitals which come under the MCD. “Under the extant recommendations of the 5th Delhi Fi- nance Commission, the first and second instalments of Basic Tax Assignment (BTA) by UD Department and grant-inaid by health and education departments have already been released by the Delhi government for the financial year 2020-21,” said the letter. “The DMCs have their own sources of revenue generation. They have to ensure sufficient provisioning of funds to pay the salaries for the frontline health workers during the Cov- id pandemic,” it added. On Saturday, the Delhi government shifted the Covid-19 patients admitted at the HRH facility to Lok Nayak and Aruna Asaf Ali hospitals as the resident doctors threatened to withdraw services in the Covid ward. “On what basis did the Delhi government write to us? They have not given funds to the municipal corporations for the past five months,” fumed North MCD Mayor Jai Prakash. CONTINUED ON P5 Resident doctors at their protest in Hindu Rao Hospital on Monday | PARVEEN NEGI interesting mix Young & educated newbies raring to cut their political teeth in Bihar Assembly polls R a j e s h K u m a r T h a k u r @ Patna An Oxford University alumnus, a masters from the London School of Economics, a former HR head with an electronics company a former financial ad, viser to the IDBI, an industrial and textiles designer, and a Commonwealth shooting gold medalist. This is not a roll call of candidates with impressive CVs for a corporate job interview. Rather, all of them are candidates for the forthcoming Bihar elections, the first phase of which is on October 28. Among them is also the grandson of B P Mandal of the Mandal Commission fame. These young, well qualified, political newbies are breaking the stereotype of Bihar netas, known more for their money and muscle power and possess- Nikhil Anand Shalini Mishra Ritu Jaiswal Manis Barriarr Shrenshi Singh Pushpam Priya Choudhary Nikhil Mandal Chetan Anand ing criminal records longer than their educational qualification. After finishing her MBA in marketing and advertising, Shalini Mishra, 42, worked in Faridabad, rising to become the HR head of an electronics company But politics was her . calling and today she is the Janata Dal (United)’s candidate from the Kesari seat in East Champaran. “Education is the only tool that can empower the people in real terms and political representatives ought to work more in this area,” she said, adding that Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s vision for inclusive growth lured her to the JD(U). Trying his luck also is Nikhil Mandal, 45, the grandson of B P Mandal of the Mandal Commission fame. The commission’s report led to reserva- tion for OBCs. After his masters in law, Nikhil worked in the corporate sector and was even the financial adviser with the IDBI. He later practised in the Patna High Court and is now the JD(U)’s candidate from Madhepura. Another young and fresh face is Manish Barriarr, 42, contesting from Patna’s high profile Bankipur seat. Continued on P7
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