Morning briefing: Fresh protests erupt in Hyderabad over Dalit scholar’s suicide

GN Bureau | January 19, 2016



Students scuffled with police on Tuesday outside union minister Bandaru Dattatreya’s residence in Hyderabad as protests erupted for the second day over the suicide of Dalit research scholar Rohith Vemula, an incident which has triggered outrage across the country. The police on Monday booked a case against Dattatreya, Vice Chancellor Appa Rao and two BJP leaders for abetment of suicide and violation of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (prevention of atrocities) Act. The campus continued to simmer while students in different parts of Telangana took to the streets, burning effigies of the central government and condemning what they called was growing saffronisation of education.

Rohith’s mother also sat on a dharna on the campus along with several students and Dalit leaders, saying she wouldn’t move until vice-chancellor Appa Rao explained the reasons behind suspending her son. Meanwhile, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday will visit University of Hyderabad, where a Dalit research scholar committed suicide. Rahul will land at Begumpet airport in the city by a special aircraft and reach the university by road. President of Telangana unit of the party Uttam Kumar Reddy said Rahul would meet the students.

Top bankers meeting to fix bad loans
Reserve Bank of India governor Raghuram Rajan and deputy governors R Gandhi and SS Mundra, held a meeting with senior executives of major banks, non-banking financial companies and asset reconstruction companies to discuss the challenges of managing the stressed assets of banks and the implementation of various remedial measures. "The meeting reviewed the functioning of the joint lenders' forum (JLF) mechanism, flexible restructuring of long-term project loans, strategic debt restructuring (SDR) scheme and regulations on the sale of assets by banks to asset reconstruction companies," the central bank said in a release on Monday. "Several suggestions were made by the participants on the way forward, which will be examined." Banks and finance companies have suggested several measures that can be taken to stem the rising levels of bad loans, which are eating into bank profitability and eroding investor confidence.

Govt to implement of global accounting standards for banks, insurance companies
The government has issued the roadmap for implementation of globally accepted accounting standards (Ind AS) for commercial banks, insurance companies and non banking financial companies. The new accounting standards that India would be moving to have been converged with International financial reporting standards (IFRS), All scheduled commercial banks, term-lending refinancing institutions such as Exim Bank, NABARD, NHB and SIDBI and Insurance companies would be required to prepare Ind AS based financial statements for accounting periods beginning from April 1, 2018 with comparatives for the periods ending March 31, 2018.

The new accounting standards have been finalised by the ministry of corporate affairs in consultation with RBI, IRDA and PFRDA. "Ind AS would be applicable to both consolidated and individual financial statements. The holding, subsidiary, joint venture or associate companies of banks and insurance companies would also be required to prepare Ind AS based financial statements," government said in a statement. Urban Cooperative Banks (UCBs) and Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) will not be required to apply Ind AS and will continue to comply with the existing Accounting Standards, for the time being. NBFCs along with their associate companies will be required to prepare Ind AS based financial statements in two phases.

2,700-page chargesheet filed against Hardik Patel
The Gujarat Police Crime Branch on Monday slapped a 2,700-page chargesheet against Patel reservation agitation spearhead Hardik Patel and three of his supporters. Monday's voluminous chargesheet contains 42 phone call records between Hardik and his supporters, statements of 503 witnesses and reports of the Forensic Science Laboratory certifying the veracity of the calls. A 370-page chargesheet was earlier filed in a sedition case against the Patidar Anamat Andalan Samiti convener. Hardik and 14 other PAAS leaders have been in custody since October 18 last year on various charges. The state government has announced its intention to withdraw several cases against many Patel agitators and facilitate bail for them, but is yet to spell out its position on the cases against Hardik, especially the sedition cases. On Sunday, Hardik had expressed willingness for a patch-up with the state government, which replied that it was agreeable if it receives an "official communication" from the Patel leader.

Sabarimala women entry case lawyer to get security cover
The supreme court has asked Delhi Police to provide security to a lawyer who has allegedly received threat calls after his NGO filed a Public Interest Litigation or PIL seeking entry of women of menstrual age group in the historic Sabarimala temple in Kerala, saying such attempts should be "crippled in the beginning" itself. "Access to justice cannot be dented by any authority or any person. It can only be controlled by a court of law within the parameters of law. Individual whim or fancy or perception has no room," a three-judge bench headed by justice Dipak Misra said, directing the city police chief to ensure that no harm is caused to him.

It took note of the application of Naushad Ahmed Khan, the President of Indian Young Lawyers' Association (IYLA) which has filed the PIL on Sabarimala issue, that he has been receiving threat calls for moving the court. Dealing with the contents of the plea, the bench said if the allegations are true, then they "would definitely have the strength to create a dent in the fundamental concept of Rule of Law which is sacrosanct in a democratic body polity". "Regard being had to the gravity of the matter, we issue notice to the Commissioner of Police of New Delhi and require him to file the response as regards the steps have been taken on the basis of the said first information report (FIR).

No posting if central staff fail to provide property details
All Central government employees have been told to submit their property returns by this month-end failing which they will be denied vigilance clearance for new postings. The last date for filing Immovable Property Returns (IPR) is January 31. All Central Secretariat Service officers are requested to submit the returns for the year 2015 "at the earliest without waiting for the last date to approach", an order issued by Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) said. An online system is in place to facilitate hassle-free filing of the property details. The employees have been asked to avoid and slowing down of the system at the last moment. "The officers are also informed that for non-submission of IPR within the stipulated date, vigilance clearance will be denied for empanelment, deputations, etc," it said. These IPR are in addition to the ones need to be filed by all Central government employees under the Lokpal Act.The last date for filing such details under the Lokpal Act is April 15, 2016.

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