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BENGALURU I WEDNESDAY 28 I SEPTEMBER 2011
Max : 28.8OC Min: 20.2OC RH: 61% Rainfall: 14.9 mm
Johansson bats for famine-struck Africa
SPORT Champions League : Testing day for big guns Vol. 4 No. 126 Established 1938
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CITY: Metro on roll, BMTC not
INTERNATIONAL: SMK runs with Pak, hunts with US ■ P10
Windows ASTROGUIDE: Khara: Dakshinayana Tithi: Ashvina Shukla Pratipad till 12.48 pm Star: Hasta till 1.38 pm Yoga: Brahma till 12.24 pm Rahukalam: 12.00 pm to 1.30 pm
PRAYERS (JAMIA MASJID) Fajar: 5.15 am Zohar: 1.30 pm Asar: 5.00 pm Maghrib: 6.25 pm Isha: 8.15 pm
SUNSET Today 6.13 pm SUNRISE Tomorrow 6.09 am MOONRISE Today 5.43 am MOONSET Tomorrow 5.59 pm
CROWD GOES AFTER BSY ‘STASH’, CANED Shikaripur: This might send a chill down the spine of BSY loyalists, coming as it does soon after the arrest of mine baron Gali Janardhan Reddy and the raids to unearth his ‘hidden wealth.’ On Sunday late night, police had to resort to a mild lathicharge to disperse a crowd which had gathered in front of the farmhouse of former chief minister B.S. Yeddyurappa, situated at Siddanapura near Shikaripur — his constituency. Reason: there were strong rumours that money which had been stashed away in the farmhouse, was being shifted to an undisclosed destination. Family members of Mr Yeddyurappa remained tightlipped on the incident.
SHUT DOWN 42 TERROR CAMPS: INDIA TO PAK New Delhi, Sept. 27: India on Tuesday asked Pakistan to destroy the 42 terror camps operational there, saying that a resurgent Taliban could be a “security threat” to the country after US forces pull out from Afghanistan. “There are 42 terror camps which are still operational. We want all of them to be destroyed,” defence minister A.K. Antony told reporters on the sidelines of the Coast Guard Commanders’ Conference here when asked about India’s concerns over the existing terror camps in Pakistan. In the recent past, reports have suggested that a large number of terrorists are waiting on the other side of the Line of Control (LoC) to infiltrate into Jammu and Kashmir. To a query on the impact of the pullout by the United States forces from Afghanistan in the next couple of years, Mr Antony said that a resurgent Taliban can be a “security concern for us” after western forces leave the war-torn country. American troops are scheduled to leave Afghanistan by 2014. — PTI ■ Page 7: ‘India ready
to stop Chinese incursion’
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PM cuts cake, slices Oppn ANAND K. SAHAY | DC ON BOARD PM’S SPECIAL AIRCRAFT, SEPT. 27
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh squarely laid the blame for the stream of 2G disclosures that cast a shadow over his just concluded turn at the UN General Assembly at the door of “other forces at work that want to destabilise our country and polity” and a “prematurely restless” opposition that wants to “force an early election. “ Addressing a press conference onboard special Air India aircraft while returning from his visit to New York via Frankurt, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh conceded that the government had slipped up in the popular perception, and that steps were needed to correct that aspect, while also making it clear that his government will “stay the course” and complete its full five year term. “We have the mandate to govern, and govern well. The opposition think they have got hold of an issue and want to force an early election. That will not happen. And we will do well in the election. The country will be surprised,” he said. The Prime Minister noted that he was hearing about “in-fighting” in the government in the wake of the 2G case only from the media, but there appeared no indication of this on the ground. “We debate with an open mind, and ministers can have different perspec-
We told them so
CASH-FOR-VOTES: ADVANI AIDE ARRESTED
Asked about leading US government figures linking the recent terrorist strikes against US and Nato forces in Afghanistan to the Pakistan-based Haqqani group, the Prime Minister said, “I am glad the world is coming round to our view. We have long spoken of ISI links with terrorist groups.”
ASHWAQ MASOODI | DC NEW DELHI, SEPT. 27
Seat in sight Sounding upbeat, he spoke of India’s chances of becoming a permanent member of the UN Security Council. He said India already had the support of 128 (of the total 192) UN member-countries. Among the permanent five members of the UNSC, the Chinese were “somewhat hesitant, but not totally unsupportive”, he said. “I am not saying we will become a permanent member tomorrow, but the climate of global opinion is certainly in favour of a country like India”. tives,” said the prime minister, seemingly unfazed by the controversy over the 2G spectrum case that has seen the BJP target union home minister P. Chidambaram, and hint at the prime minister’s personal culpability in the 2G case. ■ Page 7: Can’t probe PC,
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MR PRIME MINISTER
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh cuts a cake on his 79th birthday on board Air India One on his way from New York to Frankfurt on Monday. — PTI
THE SPECTRUM OF SCANDAL
sked why he had permitted a change in the terms of reference, and had not allowed an Empowered Group of Ministers (EGOM)) to take a call on the first stage pricing of spectrum, (and this was now being made a question of “personal culpability” for him), the Prime Minister said he
accepted the logic of then telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran (during UPAI) that the issue of spectrum pricing was a “bread and butter” matter for the Department of Telecom, and also that a group of ministers may not be a good idea when it came to processing technical data. Discussion in government in 2006 per-
tained to defence vacating spectrum (for civilian uses), and not spectrum pricing. Dr Singh recalled that the preceding NDA government, in October 2003, had taken the view that the telecom minister and the finance minister could together settle the spectrum pricing question. — AKS
The cash-for-vote scam on Tuesday took a new turn following the arrest of senior BJP leader L.K. Advani’s former aide, Mr Sudheendra Kulkarni. Mr Kulkarni, whom the BJP described as the “whistleblower”, was arrested for his alleged involvement in the 2008 cash-for-vote scam and remanded to judicial custody till October 1 following the rejection of his interim bail plea by a Delhi court. Mr Kulkarni, who over the years had emerged as one of the most powerful faces in the BJP following his proximity to Mr Advani, however, had for long dissociated himself from the outfit and been with Trinamul leader Mamata Banerjee. The BJP adopted a cautious approach and did not come out aggressively in support of Mr Kulkarni. “We respect the court’s decision. We have nothing to comment on it,” said BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman. She added that those who benefited from the scam have not yet been questioned. ■ Page 7: Kulkarni ‘mastermind’: Cops
State shows steel, calls Jindal’s bluff on shutdown B.R. SRIKANTH | DC BENGALURU, SEPT. 27
“Brinkmanship.” The one word used by a top government official to describe steel behemoth JSW Steel’s threat to shut down its plant at Toranagallu, 30 km from Bellary, because of a perceived shortage of iron ore. The reason for the remark?
All steel manufacturing firms were aware of the fact that about 25 million tonnes of iron ore-enough to keep them going for six monthswas available in several mining firms in Bellary district. Only, these firms were reluctant to take the e-auction route put in place at the behest of the Supreme Court last month. The official said the apex
court had ordered e-auction of iron ore stockpiled in the district ever since the state government ordered a ban on transport and export of iron ore from Bellary district in 2010. Ostensibly, the e-auction route of acquisition of iron ore was mooted to ensure transparency in every transaction as there were complaints galore about murky deals in the district.
“Every company knows there’s very little we (the state government) can do as the apex court has ordered eauctions. Perhaps, the raw material could cost a little more than what these firms were paying earlier. The talk of closure is merely to gain advantage by creating an impression that stocks are dangerously low,” the official told Deccan Chronicle.
Actor Taylor Lautner at the European premiere of Abduction in London Monday night. — AFP
RELIANCE CAPITAL MULLS BANK MOVE Mumbai: Reliance Capital is looking to the rapidly expanding banking sector, its chairman said on Tuesday, amid calls for more private players in the state-dominated arena. “Banking is the new growth opportunity. We will evaluate opportunities to enter this high growth sector,” Anil Ambani told shareholders at the company’s annual general meeting in India’s financial hub Mumbai. Reliance Capital, a unit of the Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group, would have to first apply to the RBI for a licence and if successful, could call the venture Reliance Bank, Ambani added. ■ P12
TYRES BURN, HEARTS MELT MAXIN MATHEW | DC BENGALURU, SEPT. 27
Formula One phenom Lewis Hamilton gave Bengaluru an exclusive preview of what to expect ahead of the Indian Grand Prix next month with an adrenaline-rushing display on the outskirts of the city that left over 20,000 frenzied fans wanting more on Tuesday. Donuts, burnouts, wheel spins you name it, he did it. Hamilton sped his 2008 title-winning MP4-23 beast down the 500m unused stretch on the NICE road as excited racing enthusiasts packed shoulder-to-shoulder on both sides of the tarmac, squeezing into whatever little gap they could find to catch a glimpse of
the British boy wonder. Hamilton’s subsequent humble Namaste was met with a thunderous round of applause and cheers from the boisterous crowd. “It’s incredible. The response has been amazing. The crowd here was even more hardcore than the ones at the British Grand Prix. We have our share of crazy fans but I don’t think they are anywhere near as passionate as the crowd I saw today,” an exhilarated Hamilton said. As the smell of burning rubber and the ear-splitting howling engines engulfed the humid atmosphere, Hamilton shifted from his F1 car to a Mercedes Benz sports variant and took 10 lucky people on the drive of their lives.
From 13-yr-old Harsh Meswani to industrialist Ashok Kheny, select Vodafone contest winners were treated to a private tetea-tete with Hamilton. Crowd mismanagement was the only low point. At one point, Hamilton, who had climbed atop his car to wave to the crowd had to quickly jump back into his vehicle as youngsters spilled onto the road to get close to the McLaren star. ■ P15
He said the e-auction system would only be a temporary measure till the apex court announces environment-friendly guidelines, a move aimed at regulating excavation in order to prevent additional damage to the ecosystem through unscientific mining in Bellary. ■ P6: Staff steel for
33,000 workers face the heat About 33,000 workers employed by the Sajjan Jindal-led JSW Steel operated Vijayanagar steel works in Toranagallu, Sandur taluk, 30 km away from Bellary were staring at a bleak future on Tuesday after Sajjan Jindal announced he may have to shut down the 10 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) Vijayanagar plant due to a continuing shortage of iron ore.