Hemant Soren Wins Trust Vote, Accuses BJP of Fomenting ‘Civil War’ to Win Polls; If the Ensign is A Sign, Then it Shouldn’t Be Shivaji’s
Supreme Court ploughs through 1,842 cases in four days, LCA Mk2 ready by 2027, exports down for 1st time since 3rd wave, weather made 3.8 millions Indians IDPs, why public bus services are faltering
A newsletter from The Wire & Galileo Ideas | Contributors: MK Venu, Seema Chishti, Siddharth Varadarajan, Sidharth Bhatia, Sushant Singh and Tanweer Alam | Editor: Pratik Kanjilal
Snapshot of the day
September 5, 2022
Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren won the trust vote today and accused the BJP of creating an “atmosphere of civil war”, to “fan riots” and pit states against each other in order to win elections. With its machinations to remove the UPA government defeated, the BJP walked out.
Rights activist and journalist Teesta Setalvad is finally free. She walked out of Sabarmati jail on Saturday evening after formalities for interim bail granted by the Supreme Court were completed. “Setalvad’s case was an opportunity for the Court to evaluate the state of freedom in the country,” writes Kaleeswaram Raj. “It offered a litmus test. It was an occasion for a formidable judicial reprimand to the political executive, and to the judiciary itself, that has failed the people during tough times. It is, clearly, an opportunity missed.”
On Saturday, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman visited ration shops in Kamareddy, Telangana, did not see the PM’s photo displayed and publicly reprimanded a collector. She alleged that people tear down PM Modi’s image at fair price shops. "You will, as the district administrator, ensure that the flexis are not be removed, that shall not be torn, that shall not be affected,” Sitharaman said in a menacing tone. “If a banner is not there, I will come to this place again.” Telangana ministers and other Opposition leaders asked if all taxpayers’ pictures should now be put up, or maybe those of the Tamil Nadu chief minister in UP. Another leader sarcastically asked if all loan waiver documents to big businessmen carried Modi’s photographs too.
A confidential 36-page report by the Madhya Pradesh Accountant General, accessed by NDTV, has found large-scale fraud and irregularities in the identification of beneficiaries, production, distribution and quality control of the ambitious free food scheme for school children. The scale of the scam was such that the number plates of trucks that six manufacturing plants or firms claimed to have used to transport 1,125.64 metric tons of rations costing Rs 6.94 crore, were found to be registered to motorcycles, cars, autos and tankers.
The Jharkhand Police have registered an FIR against BJP MPs Nishikant Dubey and Manoj Tiwari for entering the Air Traffic Control tower at Deoghar airport to forcibly obtain takeoff clearance for their chartered plane, though flight operations were not permitted after evening. The two MPs, among others, have been booked under IPC Sections 336 (act endangering life or personal safety of others), 447 (punishment for criminal trespass), 448 (punishment for house trespass). Delhi Police, who report directly to Home Minister Amit Shah, have excelled themselves, filing an FIR alleging sedition against the Deoghar official who objected to the BJP MPs trying to take off after sunset. This may be the first case of sedition filed since the Supreme Court ordered the sedition law held in abeyance in May 2022.
Charges that the BJP runs a “40% sarkar” (corruption set at 40%) in Karnataka are getting stronger. The Outer Ring Road Companies Association, representing businesses with $22 billion in revenues and sustaining 10 lakh jobs, writes to the chief minister that “lack of focus on development is appalling… Inadequate infrastructure has now reached crisis level.” Read the letter here.
INS Vikrant will eventually be based at Eastern Naval Command HQ in Visakhapatnam, but for lack of infrastructure, it is likely to berth at Kattupalli Port near Chennai for nearly eight years.
PTI reports that officially, railway factories have fallen woefully short of their own production targets. They have produced just 53 coaches for local trains in the first four months of this financial year, against a target of 730.
The BJP has threatened to pull out of the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance government of Conrad K Sangma within a month over alleged corruption and illegal activities. Including the BJP’s two, the ruling alliance has 46 MLAs in the 60-strong Assembly. The National People’s Party (NPP), of which Sangma heads, has 30 MLAs. Reportedly, he will contest all seats and not ally with the BJP. This may be a consequence of the BJP trying to break his party and failing.
At a rally against price rise in Delhi’s Ramlila grounds three days ahead of the launch of the Congress’ 3,570 km Bharat Jodo Yatra, Rahul Gandhi said all institutions, including the judiciary, media and Parliament, are under attack from the government and the Opposition has only one option ― to go directly to the people. The Congress said that unemployment and inflation are the “two brothers” of the Modi government.
Noted journalist and founder-editor of the People’s Archive of Rural India (PARI) P Sainath will return his Basavashree award in response to allegations against the chief pontiff of the Murugha Math, Shivamurthy Murugha Sharanaru. The award was conferred on Sainath by the Math on October 23, 2017, “for his yeoman service rendered through PARI on the rural folk in the way of a Journalistic Movement.”
With the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) sanctioning the development of the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Mk2, a bigger and more capable fighter than the present model, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) is setting a target of 2027 to complete ﬂight testing. The Indian Air Force will procure six squadrons. The proposal on the indigenous fifth generation ﬁghter, the Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA), is with the CCS and approval is expected very soon.
The Enforcement Directorate has raided the offices of online payment gateways PayTM, Razorpay and Cashfree in its probe into illegal instant smartphone-based loans controlled by Chinese persons. Six such premises and some entities controlled by Chinese individuals were raided in Bengaluru since Friday. Rs 17 crore kept in merchant IDs and bank accounts have been seized.
A UN report suggests that weather-related disasters internally displaced more than 3.8 million Indians in 2020. The report mentions massive floods along the Brahmaputra which affected 5 lakh people, multiple cyclones in Odisha and unprecedented heat waves. The report by Ian Fry, UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and climate change, says that rights of people are being affected or violated outright due to climate change.
Cyrus Mistry, former chairman of the Tata Group, died in a road accident while travelling from Ahmedabad to Mumbai yesterday. The highest ever count of road fatalities, of 1.56 lakh deaths, was logged in 2021. Of the car travellers who died, 84% weren’t wearing seatbelts. But “a 2020 IIT Delhi study on road safety has suggested more focus on street and highway design and enforcement rather than the current overwhelming focus on motor vehicle safety.” Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has asked the state police to conduct a detailed investigation into the accident.