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Patel News Brief ‘Chennai connect to see new era in India-China cooperation’ Mahabalipuram, Modi, Xi end Mahabalipuram summit Mahabalipuram, Chinese President Xi Jinping on Saturday departed from Mahabalipuram, the UNESCO world heritage site that was the site of the second informal summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The one-on-one talks between the two leaders that began on Friday lasted for over six hours. Both sides also held delegation-level talks on Saturday. Xi will now proceed to Kathmandu for two-day state visit to Nepal. Modi waved goodbye to the Chinese entourage at the Mahabalipuram venue. Modi gifts Xi large portrait woven in silk Mahabalipuram, Prime Minister Narendra Modi gifted Chinese President Xi Jinping a hand-woven portrait in fine red silk of the latter, at the end of their two-day informal summit in Mahabalipuram. The portrait was created by weavers of Sri Ramalinga Sowdambigai Handloom Weavers Co-operative Society in Sirumugaipudur in Coimbatore district. Modi and Xi held aloft the two sides of the red and gold silk portrait and posed for photographers. Earlier, Modi took Xi around an exhibition of artefacts and handloom at the Taj Fisherman’s Cove hotel where the summit was held. Modi explained to the Chinese President about the artefacts, including the significance about the tall brass traditional lamp there. Mobile phones to ring again in Kashmir from Monday Srinagar, Lifting the communication clamp down in Kashmir, authorities on Saturday said mobile phone services would be restored on Monday forenoon. Mobile phone services and internet facilities were suspended in Kashmir on August 5 following the abrogation of the Article 370. Although mobile phone services were available in Jammu and Ladakh region of the state during this period, it continued to remain suspended in the valley since August 5. Speaking to media in Srinagar, spokesman of the state government Rohit Kansal said, “Following improvement in the overall situation in the valley it has been decided to allow postpaid mobile phone services from Monday forenoon.” There is, however, no official word on restoration of internet facility which continues to remain suspended since August 5. Woman delivers quintuplets in Jaipur, loses one Jaipur, A woman in Rajasthan gave birth to quintuplets in a Jaipur hospital on Saturday. While one of the baby was declared born dead, other infant was kept on the ventilator and the rest of the three kids were also kept under observation, said Lata Rajoriya, Superintendent, Janana Hospital. “One Ruksana (25) was admitted in the hospital on Friday night with labour pain. She delivered five premature babies on Saturday morning. One of them was born dead. “Two girls and two boys have been kept under medical observation. All the newborns were underweight and are in nursery presently. The mother is a resident of Sanganer. The infant born dead was a boy,” she said. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said that last year’s Wuhan summit had increased the stability in ties with China and had given it a fresh momentum, but the ‘Chennai connect’ forged from their current Mahabalipuram informal summit will see the launch of a new era in bilateral cooperation. In his opening statement on the second day of the informal summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping here, odi said the Wuhan summit helped to increase the strategic communication between the two sides. He said that both sides have agreed to prudently manage their differences, and not allow them to become disputes, remain sensitive to each other’s concerns, and that India-China ties will lend stability and peace to international ties. These are major achievements of both sides, and we should strive for further progress in this direc- tion, Modi said. Both of us have held in depth discussions on important issues during our Chennai connect, he added. “The Wuhan spirit has given a new momentum to our ties, and lent it trust. The Chennai connect, will see a new era being launched in our bilateral cooperation,” Modi said. Xi, in his opening remarks, said he was “really overwhelmed” by the hospitality at Mahabalipuram. “We feel the Indian government and state and people of Tamil Nadu cherish friendly sentiment towards the Chinese government and people, through their sincere welcome to us.” He said his visit to Mahabalipuram was a “memorable experience” for him and the visit would have “far reaching impact” for the Chinese people. He said the Chinese media has published a lot of articles on the friendly relations between the two countries. Xi said that last year Modi had proposed the format of the informal summit, which they held in Wuhan. He said the Wuhan summit “continues to produce visible progress” and is an effective mechanism to resolve bilateral issues. It has led to closer cooperation between the two sides. “We made the right decision to have this kind of informal summit and we can continue with this form” of interaction, the Chinese President said. He said China and India continued to maintain and grow their ties. “Yesterday and today we engaged in candid discussion as friends, and on our bilateral relations, we had indepth engagements and good discussion. I am happy and really enjoyed our conversation so far, and look forward to more in-depth discussions in the delegation level talks. I may follow up on some of the proposals of our discussions of yesterday,” Xi added. PM Narendra Modi discussions continued with President Xi Jinping at Mamallapuram. They have been having productive deliberations on further improving India-China relations. Mehul Choksi cheated Punjab & Sind Bank of Rs 441 mn BY QUAID NAJMI Mumbai, Pak likely to remain in FATF grey list: Think-tank New Delhi, Ahead of next week’s Paris meeting of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), a Netherlands-based thinktank has said that despite the scathing indictment by the Asia Pacific Group (APG), Pakistan is likely to remain on FATF’s grey list. The European Foundation for South Asian Studies (EFSAS) has said that “there is little doubt that Pakistan is not really serious about its adherence to the FATF’s requirements.The country has been allowed to get away so often with blatantly untruthful claims to the international community about having stopped sponsoring terrorism that it has honed this skill into an art. It is, accordingly, attempting to project superfluous and temporary actions as demonstrations of sincere and substantial efforts to the FATF” . “While Pakistan may well succeed in averting the FATF blacklist by the skin of its teeth this time around, it will almost certainly remain on the grey list as it has little chance of securing the 15 votes required to get itself out of the list. That will bring its own set of serious challenges for the country’s economy. “Eventually though, if Pakistan continues on its merry path of supporting terrorism and funding it through its fake currency factories and networks, the noose is bound to tighten,” the EFSAS said. The think-tank added that Pakistani officials apprised the APG of the “measures they claimed to have taken to prevent suspicious transactions and to restrict illegal activities and freeze the assets of proscribed or- ganizations and groups. That they had little success in convincing the APG was evident from the scathing criticism that Pakistan came in for in the Mutual Evaluation Report (MER) that the APG released on October 2” . The 228 page MER was based on information provided by Pakistan, as well as the field visit by an APG assessment team in October last year. The MER will play a key part at the Paris meeting in determining whether Pakistan would be retained on the grey list that it currently is on, be removed from the list, or indeed downgraded to the black list along with North Korea and Iran. According to FATF guidelines, the parameters for the assessment are aEffectiveness and Technical Compliance Rankings’, comprising 10 and 40 parameters respectively. The public sector Punjab & Sind Bank (PSB) has revealed around Rs 441 million loan exposure to the absconding diamantaire Mehul Chinubhai Choksi, here on Saturday. This is the first time the 111-year-old bank has come clean on the default perpetrated by Choksi, who has now settled as a citizen of Antigua & Barbados, the West Indies. The New Delhi-based PSB has issued notices proclaiming him as a “willful defaulter” who owes the bank the amount for which it has initiated recovery proceedings against him. According to PSB, Choksi’s company, Gitanjali Gems Ltd., including its merged entity Gitanjali Exports Ltd., had availed the loan from the bank. Choksi is a director plus a guarantor in the company and legal heir to Guniyal Choksi in the loan account. However, since they failed to clear the loan limelight in February 2018 after the Punjab National Bank revealed a massive fraud perpetrated by them running into over Rs 13,500 crore, sending shudders in the country’s banking industry. “Besides PSB, which has been a perpetually lossmaking entity, several other banks have exposure to Choksi-Modi and their group companies.Why can’t all the government banks come clean and jointly take legal action to recover their dues,” former and Trade Unions Joint Action Committee ( TUJAC), Maharashtra Convenor Vishwas Utagi told IANS. Utagi said the other bigger questions are: what action has been taken against the departments and officers dealing in foreign exchange in Reserve Bank of India and other affected banks, how much of the outstandings from (Nirav Modi-Choksi and others) accused have been recovered so far and whether the details emerging now are under pressure’ before the World trade is likely to slow down further in 2019: RBI New Delhi, Photo shows the scene after a tornado hit Chiba Prefecture near Tokyo, Japan. A tornado formed during the course of the Typhoon Hagibis hit Chiba Prefecture near Tokyo on Saturday, injuring five people, according to Chiba's prefectural government. The tornado destroyed a house and damaged at least nine others. A man was found dead in an overturned car, though it was not immediately known if the tornado caused his vehicle to roll over, local officials said UNI. amount, the PSB declared it as a ‘non-performing asset’ on March 31, 2018, days after it dawned that Choksi and his family had already fled the country in February that year. The bank has now demanded that Choksi cough out the loan amount plus interest and other costs with effect from October 23, 2018 onwards. As he failed to comply, the PSB on September 17, 2019 declared him as a ‘wilful defaulter’. With this, Choksi joins the bank’s band of 27 other defaulters from different fields, based mainly in New Delhi, Punjab and Chandigarh, one in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh and two in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, against whom it has filed recovery suits. The latest development makes PSB the third prominent government-owned bank to reveal its exposure after Oriental Bank of Commerce came clean of loan defaults by Choksi and his nephew Nirav Modi totaling to around Rs 289 crore. (IANS story, September 6, 2019). Th e ‘chacha-bhatija’ diamantaire duo shot into The Indian economy, which is already witnessing a slowdown, may be hit further with the world trade expected to drop further, according to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). The apex bank, in its monetary policy report, said the forward looking indicators suggest that world trade is likely to slow down further this year. “The slowdown in global trade, which began in the later half of 2018, has continued in 2019, with contribution from EMEs slipping into contraction in 2019. Forward looking indicators suggest that world trade is likely to slow down further in 2019,” the Reserve Bank of India said. In the US, real GDP growth (q-o-q, annualised) decelerated in Q2:2019 to 2 per cent, after rebounding in Q1, on slumping exports and weak business fixed investment. The RBI further said the Euro area GDP growth slowed down in Q2:2019 as its major constituent economies lost steam amidst lingering uncertainties around Brexit and trade tensions. The German economy contracted in Q2 with a struggling auto industry amidst falling exports; it entered Q3 on a weak note as the manufacturing PMI in September remained in contraction zone, marking the ninth consecutive month of decline in factory activity. GDP growth in Italy stagnated in Q2 as contraction in industry and agriculture activities was offset by an uptick in the services sector, though its high level of debt and ongoing political uncertainty are downside risks. The Japanese economy grew at a slower pace in Q2 than in the preceding quarter as escalating US-China trade tensions and slackening global demand prompted a sharp downward revision in business spending. Real GDP in the UK contracted in Q2 on the back of declining manufacturing activity due to planned early shutdowns of car plants in April following Brexit uncertainty. Risks from a potential hard Brexit deal and evolving global trading conditions cloud the nearterm outlook. The Chinese economy decelerated in Q2 (y-o-y) to its weakest pace in nearly 27 years, weighed down by the adverse impact of the prolonged and unresolved trade dispute with the US, and subdued global demand. upcoming merger of banks. He has demanded a ‘forensic audit’ into all the accounts in all Indian banks held by the realty, gems & jewellery sectors on priority to reveal the extent of defaults and the collateral damage to society in the public interest. Earlier this year, the State Bank of India (SBI) had first bared its chest on a Rs 405 crore outstanding loan from Choksi and his family members. The SBI’s disclosure had come barely two days after it became public that Choksi had surrendered his Indian citizenship and taken the nationality of Antigua & Barbados Islands. In March this year, millions in India were stunned to see a relaxed and welldressed Nirav Modi sauntering down a street in London, and the subseqeunt furore led to his arrest by the United Kingdom authorities. Currently, India is making all-out efforts to get the uncle-nephew extradited from Antigua & Barbados, and UK to face the laws here. —IANS Exclusive Driver suffers heart attack, bus rolls into pond killing 2 Panipat, The driver of a bus headed to Panipat in Haryana lost control after suffering a heart attack on Saturday. The vehicle skidded off the road and fell into a pond here killing two and injuring 14 others, police said The dead included Mukesh, the bus driver of the overcrowded private bus coming from Barsat in the district. The accident took place near Kirpal Ashram, where it rolled into a pond. Eyewitnesses said nearly 100 people were travelling in the bus and some of them were sitting on rooftop and the driver probably lost control over the vehicle after the heart attack.The administration had a tough time in extracting the victims from the bus, though villagers started the rescue operations before the authorities could reach the spot. Congress appears to be leaderless New Delhi, The Congress is feeling the heat of carpet bombing from the incumbent BJPShiv Sena government during the ongoing campaign in poll-bound Maharashtra. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his whole team is campaigning in the state. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has released a list of 40 star compaigners, which includes several Chief Ministers. Apart from the BJP, the Shiv Sena has also reinforced its capabilities with new vigour. Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is touring the state extensively and the Shiv Sena Supremo Uddhav Thackrey is also campaigning. While the BJP-Shiv Sena combine is aggressive in its campaigning style, the Congress, on the other hand seems to be rudderless, missing a leader who could unify the party and steer the campaign strategically. Two of its former Chief Ministers — Prithvi Raj Chavan and Ashok Chavan — are busy in their own constituencies, Karad South and Bhokar, respectively. Former Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde’s daughter Praneeti is also in the fray, which is keeping Sushil Shinde busy there. One of Congress’ former Chief Minister and stalwart from Konkan region, Narayan Rane has moved to the BJP. The Congress’s state party chief Balasaheb Thorat is also contesting and is unable to move around too much. A senior leader said that the party needs someone who can manage the campaign and should be a call away to contestants and also be able to provide urgent reinforcements. The Congress has deputed its Central leaders — Mukul Wasnik and Avinash Pande — both General Secretaries, to work in Maharashtra. Even Himachal in-charge Rajni Patil and Gujarat in-charge Rajeev Satav have also been deputed to work in the state. However, a leader concedes that despite all these efforts the party is missing out on some forceful state leaders who can widely move and coordinate the campaign. The party has planned to hold a joint rally of Sonia Gandhi and the NCP supremo Sharad Pawar so as to send across the message for a better coordination among their political workers and leaders. For media management, the Congress has assigned leaders from Delhi only to do the job. Rajiv Tyagi and Jaiveer Shergil have been asked to be in Mumbai till the polls end while Alok Sharma in Aurangabad, Szarita Laphlang in Pune, and Surendra Rajput will be in Nagpur. Former Congress President Rahul Gandhi, after missing out on the initial poll action, will now start campaigning in the state from Sunday. He is addressing three rallies - one in Latur and two in Mumbai. Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi at a programme on the 52nd death anniversary of Socialist leader Dr Ram Manohar Lohia in Patna on Saturday UNI.