CMYK Morning India CHINESE YUAN STEADILY IMPROVING ITS POSITION IN GLOBAL MARKET OPINION Rs. 3 PATNA MONDAY, 9 MAY, 2022 PG-12, YEAR—8, ISSUE—163 (RNI NO: BIHENG / 2014 / 59124) ELON MUSK PLEDGES TO SCALE UP WORK STANDARDS IN TWITTER WORLD Rate hike wasn't surprising, Khalistan flags hung at entrance of HP Assembly timing was, says Sitharaman AGENCIES AGENCIES MUMBAI: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said the recent interest rate hike by the Reserve Bank was not surprising for her but the timing was, asserting that the rising cost of funds will not impact the government's planned infrastructure investments. For the first time since August 2018, RBI had on May 4 delivered a blunt 40 basis points increase in key repo rate to 4.40 per cent, and also hiked the cash reserve ratio by 50 basis points to 4.5 per cent after an unscheduled meeting of the rate setting panel, citing increased inflation pressures following the Ukraine war and the resultant spike in crude oil prices. Retail inflation printed at 6.9 per cent in March and the April reading is forecast to top Three engg students drown in J'khand pond AGENCIES RAMGARH: Three engineering students drowned while bathing in a pond in Jharkhand's Ramgarh district on Sunday, police said. The incident took place in Rajrappa police station area The incident took place in Rajrappa police station area when the students of Ramgarh Government Engineering College went to the pond located around 1 km from the institution for a bath in the morning, district Superintendent of Police Prabhat Kumar said. The bodies of the students aged between 20 and 22 years have been fished out and further investigation is underway, he added. Sharbani Ray, principal of the college, said that the deceased were third year students. Mumbai woman dies at Everest base camp AGENCIES MUMBAI: A 52-year-old woman doctor from Mumbai died while trekking to the base camp of Mount Everest in Nepal, a family member said on Sunday. "Dr Pradnya Samant, a resident of Goregaon area in Mumbai, died of cardiac arrest at the Everest base camp in Nepal. There was no accident," he said. "The body will be brought to Mumbai by a flight late tonight. The last rites will be performed on Monday at Shivdham crematorium in Goregaon,” he said. 7.7 per cent. The timing of RBI's rate hike came as a surprise but not the action itself as people thought it should have been done anyway .It came as a surprise because it's between the two MPCs (monetary policy committee) meetings. But the US Fed had been saying it all the while, Sitharaman said in her first reaction to the rate hike while addressing an award function organised by the Economic Times on Saturday evening here. She said that in the last MPC meeting, the RBI gave indications that it's time for them to also act, and the hike was part of a synchronised action by major central banks across the globe. In a way, it was a synchronised action. Australia did it, and the US did it that night. So, I see a greater understanding among central banks nowa- days. But the understanding of how to handle recovery from the pandemic is not fully unique or typical for only India. It's a global issue. "And even as we handled that recovery, inflation, which was really festering and festering at some unbelievable highs, let us say in the US and Britain, not so much in our country...Still, the challenge of recovery versus inflation seems to be following a particular template that's across the globe now, she said. However, she was quick to assert that the central bank's decision will not impact the government's planned huge infrastructure investments running into tens of billions of dollars. On the economic sanctions against Russia after its invasion of Ukraine, she said the blockades were constraining us as traditional buyers from Russia were shifting to sources from the Indian basket of crude, 80-85 per cent of which is from the Middle East. This shift was likely to put more pressure on the Indian crude basket price. The sanctions have resulted in people rushing to alternative sources where countries like us are there for decades. Now suddenly it will be crowded with more people who want to buy the same thing. So, supply and price factors will now have its ramifica- tion on us, she said and made it clear that India will continue to buy crude from wherever it was available cheaply. In matters related to our oil consumption and buying it from the source which gives us a concessional rate, we've asserted our right in doing that. We've been explaining that we'll certainly purchase it, so it is something that hasn't been said for the first time. We'll go ahead with what is good for us. We need cheap fuel. If it is available, why won't we want to buy it?, she said. Sitharaman said even before the war, there was an increase in prices of fertilisers. The government had to seek extra spending approval during the supplementary demands because of the way crude oil was playing up and the rise in commodity prices due to supply disruptions. Value of MPs' vote Two LeT terrorists may dip to 700 in killed in Kulgam July prez polls encounter AGENCIES NEW DELHI: The value of the vote of a Member of Parliament is likely to go down to 700 from 708 in the presidential polls scheduled in July due to the absence of a legislative assembly in Jammu and Kashmir, officials said on Saturday. The value of the vote of an MP in a presidential election is based on the number of elected members in legislative assemblies of states and Union Territories, including Delhi, Puducherry and Jammu and Kashmir. The Electoral College for the presidential election comprises the members of Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha and those of the legislative assemblies of states and union territories including Delhi, Puducherry and Jammu and Kashmir. Before it was bifurcated into two union territories of Ladakh, and Jammu & Kashmir in August 2019, the erstwhile state of J&K had 83 assembly seats. According to the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, the Union Territory of J&K will have a legislative assembly, while Ladakh will be governed directly by the Centre. The government had announced that elections to the legislative assembly would be held after the completion of the delimitation of assembly constituencies. Last week, the Delimitation Commission for Jammu and Kashmir notified its final order in which it has recommended a 90member House for the newly carved out Union Territory. But it may take some time to have an elected House in place in the UT. AGENCIES SRINAGAR: A Pakistani Lashkar-e-Tayiba terrorist was among two ultras killed in an encounter with security forces in Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir on Sunday, the police said. The gunfight in the Cheyan Devsar area of the south Kashmir district broke out after security forces launched a cordon and search operation there following inputs about the presence of terrorists, a police official said. In the ensuing exchange of fire, two terrorists were killed, he said. Inspector general of police, Kashmir, Vijay Kumar said one of the slain ultras was a Pakistani named Haider. “Pakistani terrorist Haider was involved in 2 recent terror crimes in Bandipora. In incident on 10-11-21, SgCT Mohd Sultan & CT Fayaz attained martyrdom. In second incident on 11-2-22, SPO Zubair Ahmad attained martyrdom & 03 policemen including 01 ASI of BSF injured,” the IGP Kashmir said on Twitter. Kumar said the second slain militant was a local, identified as Shahbaz Shah of Kulgam. Shah was involved in the killing of Satish Kumar Singh, a civilian, on April 13 in Kakran, Kulgam, he said. Meanwhile, two 'hybrid' terrorists of Hizbul Mujahideen were arrested in Bandipora district of Jammu and Kashmir and arms and ammunition were recovered from their possession, the police said on Sunday. On a specific input regarding movement of terrorists from Bandipora to Srinagar, a checkpoint was established on Saturday, a police official said. disease surged to 4,25,57,495, while the case fatality rate was 1.22 per cent. The cumulative doses administered in the country so far under the nationwide COVID-19 vaccination drive has exceeded 190.20 crore. India's COVID-19 tally had crossed the 20-lakh mark on August 7, 2020, 30 lakh on August 23, 40 lakh on September 5 and 50 lakh on September 16. It went past 60 lakh on September 28, 70 lakh on October 11, crossed 80 lakh on October 29, 90 lakh on November 20 and surpassed the one-crore mark on December 19. The country crossed the grim milestone of two crore on May 4 and three crore on June 23 last year. The 40 new fatalities include 35 from Kerala, two from Delhi and one each from Gujarat, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh. A total of 5,24,064 deaths have been reported so far in Active Covid cases rise to 20,635 AGENCIES NEW DELHI: India logged 3,451 new coronavirus infections taking the total tally of COVID-19 cases to 4,31,02,194, while the active cases rose to 20,635, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Sunday. The death toll climbed to 5,24,064 with 40 fresh fatalities, the data updated at 8 am stated. The active cases comprise 0.05 per cent of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate was recorded at 98.74 per cent, the ministry said. An increase of 332 cases has been recorded in the active COVID-19 caseload in a span of 24 hours. The daily positivity rate was recorded at 0.96 per cent and the weekly positivity rate at 0.83 per cent, according to the ministry. The number of people who have recuperated from the DHARAMSALA: Khalistan flags were found tied on the main gate and slogans written on the walls of the Himachal Pradesh Legislative Assembly, police said on Sunday. The flags were put up on the outer side of the main gate number one of the assembly complex, which have now been removed by the administration. It might have happened in the late night or early morning today. We have removed the Khalistani flags from Vidhan Sabha gate. we are investing and going to register a case, SP Kangra Khushal Sharma said. SDM, Dharamshala, Shilpi Beakta said, "It is an alert call for us." "We received an information this morning at around 7.30am. We have removed the flags and walls have been painted again. We are inquiring about the matter and are going to register a case under relevant sections of Himachal Pradesh Open Places Prevention of Disfigurement Act, 1985. Rest details can be shared after investigation". Local MLA Vishal Nehria said termed the incident disgusting and an act of cowardice carried out in the darkness of night. "We, the Himachalis, and the Indians are not afraid of any threats from the supporters of so-called Khalistan, the MLA said. The National Secretary of Congress Sudhir Sharma also termed the incident as unfortunate. It is unfortunate that the flag of Khalistan at the entrance of the Dharamsala assembly and slogans are written on the walls, while the non-working of CCTV and the absence of security personnel raises question marks on the administration and security agencies. Recently, the efforts being made to create such an environment in Punjab, and Himachal are a matter of concern. We the people of Himachal will give our lives for the integrity of the country, but we will not allow such forces to flourish. Jai Hind, he tweeted.