Plugged-In: Yeddyurappa sworn in as CM, and Valley ceasefire under fire

Front Page

And the next chief minister of Karnataka is… B.S. Yeddyurappa. After three days of suspense, the BJP state chief finally took oath as the 29th chief minister of Karnataka Thursday, Hindustan Times and all the major dailies report front-page.

Within 24 hours of assuming office, Yeddyurappa held a ‘one-man cabinet meeting’ with senior bureaucrats to “fulfil his pre-poll promise of waiving farm loans of up to Rs 1 lakh from all banks on day one”, The Indian Express reports.

B.S. Yeddyurappa takes oath as the chief minister of Karnataka

The Congress and the JD(S) continue to be up in arms over the governor’s invitation to BSY to form the government, an act they have labelled the “defeat of democracy”, The Hindu reports.

The BJP has 15 days to prove their majority. In ThePrint, Rohini Swamy lists the three scenarios likely to take place over the fortnight. Also read this time-line for a shortcut to understanding the twists and turns in the political battle for Karnataka.

Meanwhile, in other election news, the Trinamool Congress has swept the Bengal rural polls, with the BJP coming a very distant second. The Trinamool Congress has won 95 per cent of zilla parishad, 90 per cent of panchayat samiti, and 73 per cent of gram panchayat seats in the elections, which were marked by reports of widespread violence, The Times of India reports.

Oil that glitters is probably gold. Fuel prices have hit a record high in Delhi. Petrol now costs over Rs 75/litre as retail prices for fuel rise in tandem with global crude oil prices, which are at their highest since November 2014, Hindustan Times reports on their opening flap.

Delhi is about to be the world’s most populated city by 2035, beating Tokyo, The Times of India quotes a UN report as predicting.

Not everyone likes the idea of a ceasefire in Kashmir. Rahiba Parveen reports in ThePrint that separatists have termed the Centre’s conditional ceasefire for the duration of Ramzan a “cruel joke”.

Muslims offer prayers on the first day of Ramzan at Budshah Chowk in Srinagar | PTI

States approach President over 15th Finance Commission: The finance ministers of six states, including Delhi and Punjab, met President Ram Nath Kovind Thursday and “submitted a memorandum demanding 13 amendments to the terms of reference for the 15th Finance Commission”, The Hindu reports.

Former UP chief minister Mulayam Singh Yadav reportedly doesn’t want to give up his official bungalow, and “brought up the matter” in a meeting with current chief minister Yogi Adityanath, The Indian Express reports.

In ThePrint

Former J&K chief minister Omar Abdullah tells Mahrukh Inayet in an interview that allies BJP and PDP have “become cosy partners to enjoy the spoils of office”.

BJP’s morchas are finally being put to use. “At a joint national executive of the morchas, party chief Amit Shah has given them a mammoth task – reach out to the 25 crore beneficiaries of various government schemes by 2019,” Pragya Kaushika reports.

National Executive of the BJP's all wings
A file image of BJP president Amit Shah with Prime Minister Narendra Modi | PTI

Business Class

With RBI putting 11 public sector banks under the Prompt Corrective Action (PCA) framework over their deteriorating financial health, finance minister Piyush Goyal has assured the institutions of help in tiding over the crisis, reports The Economic Times.

In a disclosure made before the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT), Numetal has revealed that its bid value in the second round of bidding for Essar Steel is Rs 370 billion, “short of double its first offer of Rs 190 billion, and about Rs 65 billion higher than ArcelorMittal’s bid in the first round”, reports Business Standard.

News it’s just kinda cool to know

Mumbai’s world-famous dabbawalas may soon also deliver parcels. Mumbai Dabbawala Association spokesperson Subhash Talekar said they were in “an advanced stage of finalising the new project”, The Economic Times reports.

A year after PM Modi’s endorsement, Mumbai’s ‘Digital Dabbawalas’ bask in success
The famous dabbawalas of Mumbai. | Commons

Remember chlorofluorocarbons, the enemies of the environment busting a hole in our ozone layer? The production of the second-most abundant CFC, CFC-11, was to have ended completely by 2010; “Except that maybe it didn’t,” the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration tells us. Not only that, the emissions are reportedly rising again.

Point of View

The rising crude oil prices and interest rates in the US should be a major worry for the government. The Indian Express writes in its editorial, “While national attention is on Karnataka, it is important not to lose sight of the growing headwinds facing the economy.”

B.S. Yeddyurappa took oath as chief minister of Karnataka Thursday. The Hindu, in its editorial, criticises governor Vajubhai Vala’s decision to invite Yeddyurappa to form the government. It writes, “In summarily ignoring the claim of H.D. Kumaraswamy, Karnataka governor Vajubhai Vala abandoned both propriety and common sense, acting in a politically partisan manner unbecoming of his office.”

Karnataka governor Vala’s decision to invite Yeddyurappa to form the government has once again raised questions over the discretionary powers of the governor in case of hung assemblies. Vaibhav Purandare, in his column in The Times Of India, writes that it’s time to codify the rules for governors.

India was ranked 138th in Reporters Without Borders’ ‘World Press Freedom Index’, released last month. Former union minister Milind Deora, in his column in The Economic Times, writes that despite questions about the methodology employed, there are “genuine reasons for concern” about the state of Indian media.

There are so many rankings these days, for business schools, medical schools, engineering schools and universities. Former IIM-Calcutta professor Anup Sinha, in his column in The Telegraph, writes, “Ranking does nothing to improve the quality of education.”