Morning News Bulletin: Track latest stories

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New Delhi | Published: September 19, 2017 6:41:27 AM

Terming the Rohingya refugees as "illegal" immigrants, the government had informed the Supreme Court that some of them were part of a "sinister" design of Pakistan's ISI and terror groups such as the ISIS, whose presence in the country will pose a "serious" national security threat.

Dawood Ibrahim, RohingyaTerming the Rohingya refugees as “illegal” immigrants, the government had informed the Supreme Court that some of them were part of a “sinister” design of Pakistan’s ISI and terror groups such as the ISIS, whose presence in the country will pose a “serious” national security threat.

Rohingyas illegal immigrants, a threat to India: Centre to Supreme Court

Terming the Rohingya refugees as “illegal” immigrants, the government had informed the Supreme Court that some of them were part of a “sinister” design of Pakistan’s ISI and terror groups such as the ISIS, whose presence in the country will pose a “serious” national security threat. The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) made its stand clear in a much-awaited affidavit in the apex court, in which it also said the fundamental right to settle in any part of the country was available only to citizens and not the Rohingyas. It categorically stated that the apex court should not invoke its jurisdiction, as the issue of Rohingyas “fell under the exclusive domain of policy decision of the executive”.

Dawood’s brother Iqbal Kaskar arrested in extortion case

Iqbal Kaskar, the brother of fugitive don Dawood Ibrahim, was arrested by the crime branch of the Thane Police in connection with an investigation into an extortion case, the police said. Iqbal was taken into custody from his house in Nagpada area in Central Mumbai by a team led by encounter specialist and the anti-extortion cell’s senior police inspector Pradeep Sharma, an official said. “Iqbal was brought for questioning in connection with an extortion case. After investigation, he was found to be involved in the case and arrested,” the official said. Some more arrests were likely during the night as five more persons were detained in connection with the extortion case, he said.

Passenger safety in Railways paramount, Piyush Goyal orders LHB coaches manufacturing to be doubled

Multiple train derailments in the last one month seems to have created a sense of urgency within the Indian Railways. Railway minister Piyush Goyal has asked officials to look for ways to double the manufacturing of Linke-Hoffman-Busch (LHB) coaches starting next financial year. Railways at present has the capacity to manufacture 4,000 LHB coaches per year and given the current capacity—and considering incremental rise in manufacturing capacity over the years—it would take around 8-9 years for the transporter to replace all its 40,000 Integral Coach Factory (ICF)-type coaches of the total 60,000 coaches pressed into service in the Indian Railway network. However, according to sources, the minister has asked to double the manufacturing capacity to 8,000 in order to replace all ICF coaches with LHB ones within five years.

Revealed! Humble tomato is single biggest driver of spurt in food inflation

It’s official. The humble tomato plays a major role in determining food inflation. Official data reveal that tomato is the single-biggest driver of the recent spurt in inflation. It alone added as much as 78 basis points (bps) to the wholesale price index (WPI) in July and 76 bps in August, pushing up headline WPI inflation to 1.88% and 3.24% in July and August, respectively. Similarly, tomato drove up retail inflation, based on the consumer price index (CPI), by 45 bps in July to 2.36% and 62 bps in August to 3.36%, according to an FE analysis. Interestingly, key tomato-producing states – Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka and Odisha – witnessed lower than the headline retail inflation in August, thanks to good supplies there, the data showed.

Centre boosts digital payments, wants RBI to hike MDR on debit card transactions to Rs 200

In a move to encourage digital transactions, the government has proposed that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) cap the merchant discount rate (MDR) on debit card transactions at Rs 200, sources told FE. The central bank is yet to release the final guidelines on MDR. According to sources, the ministry of electronics and information technology had in February made a presentation to the central bank suggesting the MDR be rationalised on a “net-cost plus” basis with an upper limit of Rs 200. The ministry’s line of reasoning was that the increase in the volume of transactions as a result of this move would more than make up for what banks lost as MDR.

Not happy with Apple wish-list, PMO orders tech major to change demands to set up facility in India

The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) has asked US tech giant Apple to revise its list of preconditions to set up a proper manufacturing facility in the country and come up with a “workable” strategy that will conform to an existing scheme meant for promoting domestic manufacturing of electronics. Sources told FE that the PMO is not so enthusiastic about the wish-list submitted by Apple, especially the exemption it sought from the phased manufacturing programme (PMP) — that is chargers, batteries and headphones for manufacture of Apple phones be exempted from import duties. This means the PMO is, in effect, endorsing the views of the ministry of electronics and IT (MeitY) and the revenue department of the finance ministry that such an exemption isn’t feasible.

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