THURSDAY `1 LAKH CRORE TO CREATE WORLD’S LARGEST GRAIN STORAGE CAPACITY 01 The Cabinet has cleared proposal aimed at reducing crop damages, preventing distress sales by farmers & strengthening food security JUNE, 2023 Move to strengthen cooperative sector epaper.morningstandard.in The government is planning to create 700 lakh tonne of grain storage capacity in the cooperative sector over the next five years, said Union minister Anurag Thakur. This will help strengthen the country’s cooperative sector, as Primary Agricultural Credit Societies can diversify into the storage of food grains. The move is also expected to help create jobs in rural India, the minister added | P7 facebook.com/TheMorningStandard twitter.com/TheMornStandard NORTH KOREA MILITARY SATELLITE LAUNCH FAILS Crashes into the sea, with South Korean military retrieving part of the likely wreckage A CAPITAL VIEW OF NEWS PAGE 9 NEW DELHI J8.00 PAGES 12 2,150L tonnes PROJECTED LEVEL OF INDIA’S TOTAL GRAIN STORAGE CAPACITY AFTER 5 YEARS 2,000 tonne godown in each block ■ A godown of 2,000 tonne capacity will be established in each block ■ Implementation of proposal will start within 45 days of Cabinet approval ■ Thakur said the country’s foodgrains production is around 3,100 lakh tonne, while the storage capacity is only 47% of the total output. He noted that in developed economies, the storage capacities are higher than output GDP data beats Rahul’s God quip to attack PM in US forecasts, grows at 7.2% in FY23 P R E E T H A N A I R @ New Delhi Expands 6.1% in Q4; analysts say too early to celebrate as consumption yet to pick up a good chance that India may exceed this number (FY24 estiINDIA’s economy threw up a mate) this fiscal,” he said. surprise in the fourth quarter The fourth quarter also saw of FY23 as the GDP grew at a strong growth of 8.9% in infrarobust pace of 6.1%, beating structure investment and asset most estimates. This resulted creation. However, private conin a full-year growth at sumption continues to 7.2%, exceeding even be a drag as it grew the government’s own only 2.8% in Q4. estimate of 7%. Most experts also adThe higher-than-exvise caution, saying it’s pected growth in the too early to celebrate. fourth quarter was aid“We must abstain ed by healthy growth in from reading too much construction (10.4%), into high frequency hotel and transport growth numbers. Con(9.1%), ag riculture tinued fiscal and monThe 2022-23 (5.5%) and manufacturetary policy coordinaGDP growth figures ing (4.5%) sectors. tion is crucial,” said The economy had underscore the Lekha S Chakroborty, grown at 4.4% in the resilience of the professor, National InIndian economy stitute of Public Fithird quarter of FY23. amidst global For the current year nance and Policy . challenges (FY24), the RBI has proAccording to Sunil jected a GDP growth PM Narendra Modi Sinha, principal econorate of 6.5%. According mist at India Ratings, to Chief Economic Advisor V the road ahead won’t be smooth Anantha Nageswaran, the if private consumption does country can look for another not recover fully . year of solid economic perICRA’s Aditi Nayar projects a formance. “Risks are more 6% growth of real GDP in FY24 evenly balanced now as envis- with a downside risk of 50 bps aged four months ago. There is due to El Nino threat. M O N I K A YA DAV @ New Delhi BETTER NUMBERS 6.1% GROWTH D43.62 lakh crore Q4 of FY23 D41.12 lakh crore Q4 of FY22 GDP AT CONSTANT (2011-12) PRICES 10.4% growth GDP at current prices in Q4 of FY23 is pegged at `71.82 lakh crore against `65.05 L cr in Q4 of FY22 Hindu women’s plea for right to pray at Gyanvapi maintainable: HC N A M I TA BA J PA I @ Lucknow THE Allahabad High Court on Wednesday upheld the Varanasi district court’s order that the suit filed by five Hindu women seeking permission for daily worship of Goddess Shringar Gauri in the Gyanvapi complex was maintainable. The bench of Justice J J Munir had reserved its judgment after hearing both parties at length on December 24, 2022. The order came in a revision petition filed by Anjuman Intez a m i a M a s j i d ( G ya nvap i mosque management committee) in October 2022 against the Varanasi district court’s order of September 12, 2022. District judge A K Vishwesha had dismissed the mosque committee’s objection under Order 7 Rule 11 of CPC. The judge observed the suit of the Hindu women plaintiffs was not barred by the Places of Worship (Special Provision) Act, 1991, the Waqf Act, 1995 and UP Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple Act-1983, as was being claimed by the mosque committee. In their plea for right to worship Goddess Shringar Gauri in the Gyanvapi complex located next to Kashi Vishwanath temple, the women said the mosque was once a temple, which was demolished during Emperor Aurangzeb’s rule. 6.4% FISCAL DEFICIT NARROWS Fiscal deficit narrowed to 6.4% of the GDP in 2022-23 from 6.71% in FY22 7.2% Growth in real GDP during FY23 is estimated at 7.2% compared to 9.1% in FY22 Real GDP or GDP at constant (201112) prices in FY23 is estimated to attain a level of `160.06 L cr, against first revised estimates of `149.26 L cr SENIOR Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday took a swipe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi while addressing the diaspora at the US, drawing a sharp counterattack from the BJP . Addressing a gathering in San Francisco, Rahul sarcastically said there are people in India who think they know more than God and Modi is ‘one such specimen’. “We have a group of people in India who are absolutely convinced that they know everything. They think they know even more than God. They could sit down with God and have a conversation and explain to him what is going on. And of course, our prime minister is one such specimen,” he said. “I think if you sat Modi ji down next to God, Modi ji would start explaining to God how the universe works and God would get confused about what have I created,” Rahul quipped. In his pushback, Union minWe have a group of people who understand everything. They can speak to scientists and explain science to them... In life, you can’t understand anything if you are not ready to listen ister Anurag Thakur retorted that Rahul’s insult of India during his foreign visits was unacceptable. “He wants to insult Modi but ends up insulting India, questioning India’s progress. He is trying to defame India at a time the world is acknowledging our growing stature,” said Thakur. Rahul in his address also criticised the inauguration of the new Parliament building, saying, “These are distractions. The real issues are unemployment, price rise, spread of anger and hatred, crumbling education system, price of education, price of health care. BJP can’t really discuss them so then they have to do the whole sceptre thing.” Shah visits 2 more Manipur districts Strife pushes sport out of mind of top atheletes P R A S A N TA M A Z U M D A R @ Guwahati UNION home minister Amit Shah on Wednesday visited Moreh in Tengnoupal and Kangpokpi — two of the violence-hit districts in Manipur — and held discussions with various organisations to restore normalcy . “Held a meeting with the delegations of Kuki and other communities at Moreh. They expressed strong support for the government’s initiatives to restore normalcy,” Shah later tweeted. This was his third day in Manipur. At both Moreh and Kangpokpi, he was accompanied by home secretary A K Bhalla and Intelligence Bureau chief Tapan Kumar Deka. Moreh has a mixed population of Tamil, Nepali, Bihari, Rajasthani, Bengali, Punjabi, besides Meitei and Kuki communities. Hundreds of people, holding the national flag, greeted Shah when he visited the two places. Kuki organisations reiterated the demand for ‘separate administration’ and the immediate withdrawal of police commandos from Moreh. In a F I R OZ M I R Z A @ Chennai Home minister Amit Shah meets Kukis at a relief camp in Kangpokpi | PTI memorandum, they further demanded that Meitei radical groups Arambai Tenggol and Meitei Leepun be declared outlawed, citing their alleged involvement in the violence. The also sought a helicopter service from Moreh to Aizawl in Mizoram and Guwahati. A Kuki outfit claimed Shah positively responded to the demands on the withdrawal of police commandos and helicopter service. At both places, he appealed to people to maintain peace. Meanwhile, a civilian was injured in an exchange of fire between security forces and suspected militants in Imphal East district. Another gunfight was reported from Sugnu in Kakching district on Tuesday night. IN August last year, Likmabam Shushila Devi became the first judoka from India to bag multiple medals (both silver) at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. A year before that, she was the lone judoka from the country at the Tokyo Olympics. With big events like 2024 Paris Olympics lined up for the next couple of years, the 28-year-old should ideally be training. However, she is shuttling between home and a relief camp sheltering around 400 displaced people in her village Heingang Mayai Leikai, Imphal East (Manipur). Sport is not even on her mind right now. “How can we think of sports now? There are people here whose houses were burnt in front of them and their relatives killed. Hundreds of them have taken refuge in PRESS camps. It’s been a month since the SPECIAL ordeal,” Shushila told this daily . The relief camp set up at a community hall of a sports club has pregnant women and newborns. “Around 100 people sleep in a hall with hardly one fan in the heat. The summer means acute water shortage too. Somehow we are managing by donating foodgrain and helping them cook. But how long will it continue as even we will run out of stock someday said the judoka. ,” Another issue players are facing is lack of training. All the sports centres are shut. Bem Bem Devi, who went to meet Union home minister Amit Shah on Tuesday along with stars like Sarita Devi and Kunjarani Devi, said the situation is hurting athletes. “It is saddening because no sporting activity is going on. The Asian Games is coming up and preparation of every athlete here has been disrupted.” P11 Cops say probe against WFI chief on as support for wrestlers grows Munde daughter is 1st BJP MP to back grapplers U J W A L J A L A L I @ New Delhi ON a day when the support for t h e p ro t e s t i n g w re s t l e r s swelled, Delhi Police on Wednesday said that its probe involving Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh in sexual harassment cases is still in progress, refuting reports that sufficient evidence was not found to arrest him. “The cases filed by women wrestlers are still under consideration. Status reports are being filed before the court,” said a senior Delhi Police officer. Curiously the police had from , its official Twitter handle stated that media claims were wrong, but deleted the tweet later. Singh is facing two cases of sexual harassment, one of them on a complaint by a minor, under the POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences) Act. But a man claiming to be the uncle of the minor sought to demolish her charges, alleging she was not a minor. He alleged that Singh was being framed. Then came a statement from Delhi Commission for Women’s chairperson Swati Maliwal, who said it was a criminal offence to reveal the identity of the minor victim. Sports Minister Anurag Thakur urged the wrestlers not to take any step that could undermine sports or hurt players, adding action will be taken once the probe is over. Meanwhile, the support for S U D H I R S U RYAWA N S H I @ Mumbai Singh defiant WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh said on Wednesday that if the charges against him by the wrestlers are proven, he would hang himself. The six-time BJP MP said, “If you (wrestlers) have any evidence against me, present it to the court and the police.” the grapplers is growing. Bhartiya Kisan Union leader Naresh Tikait has called a mahapanchayat in Muzaffarnagar on Thursday to discuss the wrestlers’ protest. In Kolkata, CM Mamata Banerjee took to the streets to protest the alleged manhandling of wrestlers after they tried to march towards the new Parliament building. She also participated in a rally . In Mumbai, MNS chief Raj Thackeray extended his support to the wrestlers and wrote to PM Modi asking him to pay attention to the protest. BJP’s Lok Sabha MP Pritam Munde has expressed her displeasure over the way women wrestlers have been treated. Pritam is the daughter of late BJP leader Gopinath Munde. She is the first BJP Lok Sabha MP who has spoken out over the wrestlers’ protest. Pritam Munde, who represents Beed constituency in the Lok Sabha, said that she was concerned both as a woman and as an MP . “The government should have completed a timely inquiry. The truth should have come out. It’s very unfortunate that no one has opened a dialogue with the women wrestlers. As a Lok Sabha MP and woman, I am very much concerned,” she said. Pritam Munde’s sister Pankaja has been sidelined in the BJP. Pankaja lost the previous Maharashtra assembly polls against Dhananjay Munde, her cousin and NCP leader. Pankaja’s supporters had blamed Devendra Fadnavis for her defeat and accused him of damaging her leadership as she was one of the main aspirants for the chief minister’s post. SECURITY COCOON Security personnel with bulletproof shields escort Pakistan’s former prime minister Imran Khan after his court appearance in Islamabad on Wednesday | AP DELHI ORDINANCE Kejriwal to meet Stalin in Chennai today P R E E T H A N A I R @ New Delhi CHIEF Minister Arvind Kejriwal will call on his Tamil Nadu counterpart M K Stalin in Chennai on Thursday as part of his attempt to garner support from Opposition parties on the Centre’s ordinance that seeks to restore the LieutenantGovernor’s control over the transfer and postings of bureaucrats in the national capital. “Will be meeting Tamil Nadu CM Thiru @mkstalin in Chennai 1st June to seek DMK’s support against Centre’s unconstitutional-undemocratic ‘Anti-Delhi’ Ordinance,” Kejriwal Twitted on Wednesday . Kejriwal will also meet Jhrkhand CM Hemant Soren in Ranchi on Friday “On June 2, I . will meet the Chief Minister of Jharkhand Mr @HemantSorenJMM ji in Ranchi. Will seek their support against the ordinance passed by the Modi government against the people of Delhi,” he said in the tweet. Kejriwal on Tuesday had met CPM’s Sitaram Yechury who extended full support. Yechury also appealed to all Opposition parties, including Congress, to oppose the ordinance. The Centre had on May 19 promulgated the ordinance to create an authority for the transfer and posting officers in Delhi. The ordinance came soon after the Supreme Court handed over the control of services in Delhi to the elected government. The ordinance has become a political flashpoint between the Centre and Opposition parties ahead of 2024 elections, with Kejriwal urging all Opposition parties to come together in the Rajya Sabha and vote against the ordinance. The AAP leader has projected the fight as a “semi-final” to 2024. EXPRESS READ RAJASTHAN CONGRESS TEEN STABBED TO DEATH DISENGAGEMENT Pilot adamant on his demands, 2 days after Delhi truce Was aware of Sahil, asked my daughter to stay away: Father India, China meet in-person amid standoff along LAC Two days after a reconciliation meeting at Mallikarjan Kharge’s house in Delhi, Sachin Pilot on Wednesday said there would be no compromise on the three demands that he placed on the conclusion of his padyatra on May 15. The three demands are: Students who suffered during competitive exams due to paper leak should be compensated, the Rajasthan Public Service Commission should be dissolved and a probe must be initiated into alleged graft cases during Vasundhara Raje’s tenure. P8 The father of the 16-year-old girl who was stabbed and stoned to death by Mohammed Sahil Khan in Shahbad Dairy area, was aware of her relationship with the accused, according to the FIR. “For the past one year, my daughter was the friend of Sahil. She told us several times about him and we used to tell her this is not the age to do such things. She used to get always offended and go to her friend Neetu’s home,” the father said in his police complaint. The father had earlier said that he didn’t know Sahil. P3 India and China on Wednesday discussed ways to disengage around the LAC in a bid to restore peace. The 27th meeting of the working mechanism for consultation and coordination on India-China border affairs was held on Wednesday in-person in New Delhi. “The two sides reviewed the situation along the LAC in the western sector of India-China border areas and discussed proposals for disengagement in remaining areas in a frank manner...” said the MEA.
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