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29th "NRC-related" suicide in Assam, as Nirod Baran Das takes his life by hanging on a fan

By Our Representative
Reporting 29th case of National Register of Citizens (NRC)-driven suicide in Assam, one of India’s human rights campaign sites has said that, on October 20, tragedy struck Kharupetia town in Darrang district of Assam, when a retired school teacher and advocate Nirod Baran Das “took his life by hanging himself to a fan in his home.” The report adds, “The NRC process has so far claimed over two dozen such lives in the past four months alone.”

Chidambaram: new series notes to cost Rs 20,000 crore; top economist: does govt know what's black money?

By Our Representative
In a strong reaction to Prime Minister Narendra Modi announcing that the denomination of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 would no longer be legal tender, former finance minister P Chidambaram has said that the introduction of “new series of notes” of Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 denomination is estimated to cost Rs 15,000-20,000 crore", wondering if the economic gains of demonetization would be "at least equal to that amount.”
Pointing out that demonetizing of the two denominations is no guarantee that black money would be unearthed, Chidambaram says, “In 1978, the Janata government demonetized high denomination notes”, yet that action “failed to achieve its objectives”, and “high denomination notes were re-introduced shortly afterwards and the volume of unaccounted wealth and income admittedly increased.”
Suggesting that things are far more complicated than in 1978, Chidambaram says, “Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes in circulation, by value, account for 86.4 per cent of all the notes in circulation”, adding, forty years ago, “a Rs 500 note was a high denomination note. Today, it is doubtful. One has to take into account the inflation in the intervening period.”
Wonders Chidambaram, whether with the demonetization the present cash to GDP ratio, which is 12 per cent, will it come down to the world average of about 4 per cent, asking, “Will gold imports surge indicating that unaccounted income/wealth may seek refuge in bullion and gold jewellery? ”
Chidambaram's commentary comes amidst a senior economist, Prof Prabhat Patnaik, doubting whether the Government of India understands what black money means. Patnaik says, the implicit understanding that “black money” consists of hoards of cash which are held in trunks or pillowcases or buried under the earth is totally wrong.
“With this understanding, it is then suggested that if Rs 500 and 1000 notes are demonetized, then people going to banks to exchange large amounts of old notes for the new legal tender would make the banks suspicious; and banks in turn would convey their suspicions to the tax authorities who would then catch the culprits”, Patnaik says.
What is not understood, says Patnaik, is that “black activities”, like “white activities”, are meant to “earn profits for those engaged in them; and simply keeping a hoard of money earns no profits.” He adds, “Profits are earned not by hoarding money but by throwing it into circulation; the 'miser' does the former, the capitalist the latter. Those engaged in black activities are capitalists not misers.”
Giving example of what black money is, Patnaik says, “If 100 tonnes of minerals are extracted but only 80 tonnes are declared to be extracted, in order to reduce tax payment, then we have a case of 'black money' being generated. Likewise, if $100 of exports are undertaken but only $80 are declared, and the remainder $20 are kept abroad in Swiss Banks, which is against the law, then we have a case of 'black money' being generated.”
In a separate commentary, Prof Kamal Mitra Chenoy, professor of political science, has said that Modi government's tactic of replacing Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes is not “an economic but political move”, adding, “As the Panama Papers have shown, all major industrialists in many countries have used Panama as a tax haven”, whether it is the President of Iceland, who had to resign because of investments abroad, or Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif's three sons, President Vladimir Putin's friend and famous cellist, or actor Amitabh Bachchan.
“The truth is that more than 90% of black money from India is in tax havens or banks abroad. Why isn't the Finance Ministry taking interest in getting black money into India where it can be used for public investment?” he asks, adding, “Ram Jethmalani claimed last year that the Germans were willing to repatriate black money, but the Modi government refused to write officially to the German government.”

Comments

Unknown said…
What you had done during your tenure Mr.Chidabaram you and your son are corrupt
Sanjeev Thakkar said…
People last in the back money chain are left with holding the real currency. The beneficiary on top have long before converted into something more substantial as investments into stock, real estate, bullion etc...there will be small and mid level unaccounted mobey that will surface up...big will become bigger within months

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India failing to dictate diplomatic preferences of Nepal, Bhutan, is unfairly blaming Beijing: Chinese daily

By Our Representative
In a sharply-worded editorial, a top Chinese media outfit, described by BBC as state-run, has said, commenting on India's foreign relations with its neighbours, that "speculation and suspicion" is "certainly not diplomacy". Published in "China Daily", the largest circulating English Monday-to-Saturday newspaper with branches across the world, the editorial notes (September 20) that "several recent events" in Nepal and Bhutan, are "gnawing worrywarts in New Delhi".
The editorial -- which comes close on the heels of a sharp critique of India's foreign policy in a state-supported Russian media outfit, Sputnik International, calling India's anti-Pak diplomacy as having "gone awry" following Prime Minister Narendra Modi's "half-baked" push for anti-terror drill down "others' throat" -- says, the " worrywarts" include "Nepalese troops taking part in a joint…

Ahmedabad, GIFT, Adani city get 1.68 lakh acre ft Narmada water; Gujarat's rural areas just 4.27 AF: Letter to CM

Counterview Desk
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Gujarat BJP MLAs, youth leader "incited" attack on North Indians: Cong releases video

Counterview Desk
Senior Gujarat Congress leader Shaktisinh Gohil, currently in charge of Bihar and national spokesperson, All-India Congress Committee, has sent a legal notice to chief minister Vijay Rupani threatening criminal case and civil defamation suit for accusing him with "baseless statement" that he was responsible for attacks on north Indians in Gujarat.

17 lakh Jharkhand elderly, widows, differently abled do not receive pension: Public hearing told, aadhaar is a hurdle

By Our Representative
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Ethnocide in Caribbean island filmed following award winning docufilm on Jamaica's anti-colonial Indian roots

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Explorer, director and producer, Linda Aïnouche writes exclusively for Counterview: ***
Nobody escapes from blood and thunder in Colombia, and definitely not in the archipelago of San Andres, situated closer to Managua and Kingston than Bogota. The Raizal p…

India to deport Rohingya refugees, as the world moves towards prosecuting Myanmar for genocide

By Tapan Bose*
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An elite Kutir set up by Modi far from the "madding" crowd: This Gandhi museum is formal, unapproachable

By Rajiv Shah
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Accused of being RSS plant, Modi man, Hyderabad Urdu varsity chancellor asks President to probe "irregularities"

Counterview Desk
Refused entry in the Maulana Azad National Urdu University (MANUU), the central university's newly appointed chancellor Firoz Bakht Ahmed, who claims to be grand nephew of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, has, in a letter to the President of India, said that MANUU vice-chancellor (V-C) Dr Aslam Parvaiz has accused him of being an RSS plant and a Modi man, whose sole aim is to "interfere in the working of the university".

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By Nandini Oza*
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Post-MJ Akbar resignation: #MeToo movement and fears of backlash

By Sheshu Babu*
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