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Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying said Chinese border troops have never crossed the line.

Ignoring India’s demand to revert to a status-quo in Depsang Valley, China on Wednesday firmly stuck to its stand that its troops have not violated the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Ladakh region.

“I want to reiterate here that the Chinese border troops have been acting in strict compliance with the bilateral agreements and conducting normal patrol on the Chinese side of the LAC. They have never crossed the line,” Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying told a media briefing here.

She was replying to a question on yesterday’s flag meeting between the militaries of the two countries in Ladakh region and subsequent assertion by India that status quo should be restored.

Ms Hua’s assertion, reiterating her remarks made on April 22, makes it clear that China is sticking to its stand that there is no violation and its troops may stay put in the area until it is resolved through the talks.

Ms. Hua said both sides have opened the “communication channels” to discuss the issue though the consultation mechanisms on boundary issue.

But, at the same time she said both sides should stick to the consensus reached so far on LAC.

“The two sides should abide by their consensus which is in the interest of both. The two sides should work together to properly resolve border issues within the framework of existing mechanisms and create favourable conditions for the bilateral relations,” she said.

This is the first time, after the controversy broke, that China has acknowledged that the issue is being discussed between the two countries.


Charges the audit body with bringing ‘disrepute’ to nation

The draft JPC report on the 2G scam, while giving a clean chit to the PM, has said the CAG’s 2G audit report is responsible for “pitching the country amongst the most corrupt nations in the world”. The CAG report had led to ex-Telecom Minister, A. Raja’s resignation in November 2010, his arrest in February 6, 2011, and eventually, the Supreme Court judgment of February 2, 2013, cancelling 122 licences.

Striking similarities

The draft JPC report devotes 11 pages to challenging the CAG’s loss estimates, and does not acknowledge explicitly that a loss was caused. The report says that the NDA’s Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee, was himself involved in the migration package which caused a loss of Rs. 42,080.34 crore. Among the reasons used to justify allocating spectrum in 2008 at 2001 rates are “public welfare; the background of NTP 1999; need to deliver services at reasonable prices to increase teledensity and benefit economy”.

Many of these can be found in the government’s January 7, 2011, press release.

Other arguments, such as the TRAI taking a view that revenue generation should not be a priority, or that allocating spectrum at historical rates without auctions is consistent with the objectives of the 10th Five-Year Plan, are included in the JPC draft, and a UPA press note, released one month before Mr Raja’s arrest by the CBI.

Regarding the three “presumptive loss” estimates arising out of 3G, Swan/Unitech transactions and the S Tel offer, the draft has language and figures which are similar and, in some cases, identical to those in the 25-page presentation accompanying the January 2011 press release. The arguments that 2G and 3G spectrum cannot be compared due to difference in spectral efficiencies or the time gap between 2G spectrum allocations in 2008 and 3G auctions in 2010 are also mirrored in the two documents.

As for Swan and Unitech’s equity transactions, inspite of the Supreme Court’s rejection of arguments by Swan, Unitech and government lawyers that, since infusion of FDI was legal, it amounts to “dilution” and “not sale” of equity — the JPC draft advances the same arguments that were made by the UPA through press releases of November 7, 2008 and January 7, 2011.

Large portions of the opposition to the CAG Audit report is based not on CAG, Vinod Rai’s testimony in the JPC, but that of ex-CAG official R.P. Singh. In November 2012, after several media interviews and statements distancing himself from the CAG’s loss estimates, hinting that he was forced to sign the audit report and that PAC Chairman, Murli Manohar Joshi may have influenced the CAG report, Mr. Singh later publicly withdrew his statement on Karan Thapar’s show, on grounds that “he was misquoted.”

The report draws multiple conclusions against the CAG, overruling the Supreme Court’s findings in its orders of March 12, 2010 and February 2, 2012, related to the 2G scam, to declare that the CAG and its loss calculations were responsible for the “disrepute caused to the nation”.


HP launches world’s fastest desktop printer

Hewlett-Packard on Wednesday launched for business in India its latest range of Officejet Pro X 500 series printers that are recognised as world’s fastest desktop printer by Guinness Book of Records.

"HP’s Officejet Pro X 500 series is recognised as the world’s fastest desktop printer by Guinness World Records. It is powered by HP PageWide Technology and can deliver professional documents at up to 70 pages per minute,” HP Printing Systems PPS Director Nitin Hiranandani told reporters here.

The series includes four devices and HP claims that they deliver high-quality documents at up to twice the speed and half the cost of colour lasers.

These devices are targeted at work-teams with up to 15 users printing up to approximately 4200 pages a month. Users can also print from virtually anywhere with the latest mobile printing technologies such as HP ePrint.

The HP Officejet Pro X Series is priced in the range of Rs 31,499-50,499.

The company also introduced its Officejet Pro Black & White series on Wednesday, priced in the range of Rs 7,999-11,999.

In 2012 HP sold about 3 million printers in India, which included 1.2 million inkjet printers and 1.8 million laser printers. The company controls more than half of the market for both the printers in India, Hiranandani said.

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