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The Morning Wrap: Why Protests Against Demonetisation Are Useless; Driver Runs Off With Crores In Cash

Our selection of interesting news and opinion from the day's newspapers.

24/11/2016 8:03 AM IST | Updated 24/11/2016 10:19 AM IST
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Indian opposition politicians take part in a protest calling for Prime Minister Narendra Modi to attend parliament over the ongoing demonitisation process at Parliament House in New Delhi on November 23, 2016. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

The Morning Wrap is HuffPost India's selection of interesting news and opinion from the day's newspapers. Subscribe here to receive it in your inbox each weekday morning.

Essential HuffPost

While demonetisation has caused considerable inconvenience to a large section of the population, 85% of those surveyed in the HuffPost-BW-CVoter survey felt the trouble was worth the cause to eradicate black money. In this context, does it make sense for politicians from the Opposition to raise a storm over Prime Minister Narendra Modi's policy? Manu Joseph explains why it may be futile, even presumptuous, for these leaders to protest against the PM, on behalf of those they consider wretched.

Sonia Gandhi may try her best to revive the lost glories of her party, but people seem to have a different opinion on its future. If the results of the recently concluded bypoll elections in six states and one Union territory are anything to go by, Congress members should be having sleepless nights in the months to come. Read Arati R Jerath's analysis here.

Since demonetisation of high currency notes, West Bengal and Karnataka have seen a huge surge in the opening of the Jan Dhan accounts. In the last two weeks, banks have been flooded with deposits in these accounts that have touched ₹21,000 crore, with West Bengal leading the way.

Main News

The Supreme Court said it would act on its own in case the government and Parliament failed to pass an amendment to the 2013 law to allow the selection of the Lokpal chairperson and members. Although the Lokpal Act was notified in 2014, the selection of the chairperson has been stalled for the last two years.

PM Modi is likely to attend the Rajya Sabha today to take on the Opposition's protests against the move to demonetise high value currencies. When he attended the Lok Sabha yesterday, the session was interrupted by repeated protests by the Congress and the Trinamool Congress. He is expected to give his reply to these detractors today, though the Congress feels he's not brave enough to face the music.

Indian troops mounted a massive operation on Pakistani posts along the Line of Control (LoC), which lead to the death of at least 14 soldiers due to shelling. The offensive took place hours after the Indian Army pledged to exact revenge for the killing of three soldiers. Sources say the exchange of fire was one of the heaviest since a ceasefire came into effect along the LoC in late 2003.

Off The Front Page

The rupee hit an all-time low in 39 months against the US dollar, opening at 68.76 against the dollar and closing as low as 68.80. The last time it had hit this level was in August 2013. The rupee is now 7 paise short of its all-time low of 68.85 to the dollar. So far this year, it fell 3.8%.

A driver of a vehicle ferrying cash worth ₹1.37 crore to a Bank of India ATM on KG Road in Bengaluru has fled with the money. The incident reportedly happened at 2 p.m. The driver, who a contract employee with a security agency, is yet to nabbed by the police.

The mother of Najeeb Ahmed, who has been missing from Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) for over a month now, has said Akhilesh Yadav, the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, has promised her help to find her son. "He said my son is a child of UP," she said, adding that "If Delhi police couldn't find him, they should have told us in the beginning and we would've brought the UP police."

Opinion

Biju Dominic writes in Mint about the costs of ignoring human emotions while demonetising high currency notes and treating the entire process as an economic activity instead. "The apparent lack of preparation was critical to the secrecy and success of this operation," he writes, but "The scarcity of currency notes and the accompanying pain and discomfort was inevitable."

Taking into account the political turmoil on India's university campuses, especially at JNU, Anuradha Chenoy reflects in the Hindustan Times on how these churns have affected the youth of the nation. "All Indian governments — past and present — claim human resources and knowledge are precious assets," she writes, "But when it comes to investing in these universities, they are lacking."

In a fine obituary in The Indian Express, S Gopalakrishnan evaluates M Balamuralikrishna's legacy, showing him to be unique in the history of Carnatic classical music, with no predecessor or successor, acting as a "rupture" instead.

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