16 March 2017

16 March. 2017: 16 Jamadiul Akhir 1438:Vol:8, No:143
Delhi HC dismisses plea against ban on Zakir Naik’s IRF, says Centre’s decision in interest of India
New Delhi:Delhi High Court on Thursday held that the Centre’s decision to ban Zakir Naik’s IRF was taken to safeguard national security as it dismissed its plea challenging the ban.Holding that Naik’s foundation’s plea challenging the Centre’s decision has “no merit”, the court said the order of the govt was “not arbitrary and illegal”.“The decision by the Union of India was taken in the interest to safeguard the sovereignty, integrity and national security of India,” Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva said.The court also agreed with the govt contention that the order was made after “application of mind” as there was apprehension that youths could be “radicalised” to join terror groups.It said that the govt has produced material before it to back its decision to immediately impose the ban on the organisation.IRF, in its plea, had challenged the Nov.17, 2016, notification of the MHA which had imposed an immediate ban on the organisation under the UAPA.Upholding the Centre’s notification, Justice Sachdeva said the govt has given reasons for their step and it is wrong to say that no detail reasons were communicated to them before banning.Meanwhile, the High Court made clear that the tribunal, set up under the UAPA, shall not get influence by the findings of this judgement and decide the issue pending before them on merit.PTI
Delhi HC dismisses plea against ban on Naik’s IRF, says Centre’in interest of India
Delhi HC upholds govt ban on Zakir Naik's IRF, says decision taken to safeguard India's sovereignty
Naik says ‘I am a messenger of peace, not a Terrorist’
Kuala Lumpur,: Indian Islamic preacher Dr. Zakir Naik, the founder of Peace TV channel, who is under the eye of the investigation agencies over alleged terrorrelated activities, has denied all such allegations and claimed that he is instead a messenger of peace. After a long time, breaking his silence on a wide range of allegations made against IRF and the Peace TV owned by him, Naik said on Thursday that he is not a terrorist but one person who spreads the message of peace. Naik was reacting to the Central Govt’s 5­year ban against his institution – the Islamic Research Foundation – and freezing of its bank accounts. In an interview with Malay daily, ‘Sinar Harian’ at its Karangkraf office in Shah Alam, the 50­year­old founder of the Islamic Research Foundation supremo said, “I have never done a mutiny or conducted any terrorist activities against humans in all my life. I only preach a message of peace to people.” “In certain quarters who do not want peace in this world. So, they make groundless allegations against me,” Naik added. Speaking on a 5­year ban on his institution Islamic Research Foundation and prosecution on terrorism charges, Naik said, “I ask the Indian govt to prosecute me in an international court in anywhere the World or in Malaysia.” The response from Naik came after the Delhi high Court’s decision to dismiss his plea and ruling that the Central Govt’s decision to ban Islamic Research Foundation was taken to safeguard the sovereignty of the Country. Indialivetoday
2007 Ajmer dargah blast case: Sentence pronouncement deferred to March 18
NIA special court in Jaipur on Thursday postponed till March 18 the pronouncement on quantum of sentence to be awarded to the two convicts in the 2007 Ajmer dargah blast case. The convicts got a reprieve for 2 days following an objection raised by their counsel.On March 8, special court convicted Bhavesh Patel, Devendra Gupta and Sunil Joshi and fixed March 16 for the sentencing. The sentence is to be handed down to Bhavesh and Devendra, as Sunil Joshi, ex-RSS pracharak, was murdered in Dec.2007.Devendra, who worked for RSS in Jharkhand and MP, was the first person arrested by the sleuths of the Rajasthan ATS in 2010. hehindu
Court defers Ajmer blast sentencing till Saturday
In a first, Law ministry to launch TV channel, discuss issues like triple talaq, uniform civil code
New Delhi: Union law ministry is all set to become the first ministry to have its own TV channel. The channel will beam discussions and constitutional interpretations on key issues like triple talaq and the uniform civil code, apart from debates on important judgments, to spread legal awareness.The ministry has sought a separate channel for this purpose from a bouquet of 32 direct-to-home channels launched by the ministry of HRD called Swayam Prabha to broadcast programmes for school and university students.The law ministry has already written to HRD ministry seeking the operational rights for one channel. The ministry is considering hiring leading Bollywood directors like Prakash Jha to produce quality programmes on legal education for the marginalised.Jha was recently commissioned by the govt to make 15 five-minute short films for the National Legal Services Authority aimed at creating legal awareness. CJI J S Khehar is the patron-in-chief of NALSA, which is engaged in providing free legal aid to the poor.The ministry has launched an open competition for freelance film-makers and students of various law schools with a cash prize of Rs 20,000-Rs 50,000 for five- to 30-minute films on relevant issues."The idea is to create a bank of enriched material on legal issues that can be best used by the common man," said a senior officer associated with the project.Documentaries, short films and clips are what the ministry is looking for to create its bank and it is open to commissioning various production houses and law universities for content based on research and ground studies. The govt will start the project by first broadcasting programmes for a few hours every day. Once it gathers enough content, the channel will run 24/7. timesofindia
Law ministry to have own channel to discuss triple talaq, uniform civil code
Centre’s legal debates set to air on TV as Law Ministry seeks rights to launch its own channel
 NRI says followed due legal process, send WhatsApp talaq message, only after papers of divorce were sent
Hyderabad: Osman Qureshi, one of NRI brothers who reportedly divorced his wife on WhatsApp,requested authorities to probe the case in a fair manner. He also asked city police commissioner and home minister to consider his side of story. Qureshi, who resides in US, posted an hour-long video message on YouTube in which he claimed he and his family had not broken Muslim personal laws or any other law. "There are two sides of every story. Those investigating should listen to our side.We have not broken any laws," Qureshi said. NRI claimed that due legal process had been followed and that his wife was divorced and that there was documentation to prove it. He said the qazi, who had solemnised the marriage was approached and that divorce proceedings were done according to laid down procedures. The documents, he claimed are with his lawyer, who had `submitted' them before the authorities. He also claimed that a divorce notice was sent which Noor had refused to accept. "It is not my problem if they refuse to accept the notice," Qureshi said. He also claimed that the mahar (dower) was paid back. India should fix the "Haq Meher" for all Muslim marriages at Rs.10,00,000/- minimum which should be deposited in a national bank in the girl's name. This will minimize talaq issue for filthy reasons.Claiming that he did not want to lie, Qureshi said that he did send the WhatsApp message, but only after the papers of divorce were sent."I first called them and said that i'm divorcing you for what you've done," he claimed in his video.Qureshi also claimed that his parents, who are senior citizens, are innocent and are being framed even as he claimed that his former in-laws had kept them hostage in their own house. He said that he was verbally abused by his former in-laws.
Sachar Committee recommendations: Equal Opportunity Commission draft Bill recirculated to seek consensus
New Delhi:Based on Expert Group Report and examination, the central govt on Thursday re-circulated the draft Equal Opportunity Commission (EOC) Bill for inter-ministerial consultations. In pursuance of one of the recommendations made by Sachar Committee, Govt had set up an Expert Group to examine and determine, inter alia, structure and functions of an EOC to address the grievances of deprived groups. To enable the minorities to avail opportunities in the development process of the country, Ministry of Minority Affairs is already implementing various welfare and development schemes/ programmes. It has taken initiatives for educational empowerment, infrastructure development, skill development, economic empowerment, women empowerment and also to meet the special needs of the Minorities.Moreover, under PM’s 15 Point Programme for the Welfare of Minorities (PM’s New 15-PP), 24 schemes/programmes of 11 Ministries/Departments including 7 exclusive schemes of the Ministry of Minority Affairs are covered. Details of the schemes / programmes / initiatives taken up by the Ministry of Minority Affairs exclusively for minorities, and various schemes of other Central Ministries / Deps under PM’s New 15-PP. Sachar Committee recommend policy measures for upliftment of linguistic and religious minorities.Among several recommendations, the committee opined for an Equal Opportunity Commission to ensure the upliftment of deprived Muslims in the country. India.com
JNU missing student Najeeb Ahmed case: Delhi HC again slams Capital's cops
New Delhi: Delhi high court today again slammed the Capital's police saying they are "focusing on paper work, wasting public money" and not making all efforts to find missing JNU student+ Najeeb Ahmed."You are just focusing on paper work, wasting public money. We want results in the case. Find him (Najeeb) somehow," the Delhi high court said, adjourning the case, which came for hearing today, to April 10.The 27-year-old JNU student has been missing since Oct.14-15 last year after a scuffle at his JNU hostel allegedly with ABVP activists the previous night. In December too, the Delhi high court severely chastised the Delhi police for remaining clueless about the missing JNU student.Separately yesterday, another Delhi court - a lower court - said it will decide on March 20 whether nine JNU students - suspects in Najeeb's disappearance - can be asked by Delhi Police to give their consent to undergo a lie detector test in a case relating to the missing student. TOI
JNU Dalit scholar body brought home, slipper hurled at Union minister
Chennai:An unidentified man hurled a slipper at Union minister of state for road transport and highways Pon Radhakrishnan on Thursday while he was at the house of J Muthukrishnan, the Dalit research scholar at JNU who allegedly committed suicide, in Salem.Muthukrishnan’s parents have both dismissed claims that their son committed suicide, and also asked for CBI to formally investigate his death.Family and friends of Muthukrishnan expressed their anger against the Centre when Radhakrishnan arrived at his residence to express his condolence to his family members. Slogans were shouted against central govt after minister came out of Muthukrishnan’s house.A man threw a slipper at Radhakrishnan while he was briefing reporters outside the house. hindustantimes
With Maurya out of CM race, spotlight shifts to Manoj Sinha, Rajnath; Adityanath not ruled out:zee news
New Delhi: With state BJP chief Keshav Prasad Maurya ruling himself out as the frontrunner for the post of UP  CM , the spotlight has now shifted to Union Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha, Lucknow mayor Dinesh Sharma as other top contenders for the top job. While the name still being discussed mostly is that of Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, BJP's firebrand leader and Gorakhpur MP Yogi Adityanath's name is also in the reckoning.BJP, at the moment, is still undecided over its top choice for the CM's post, 5 days after its resounding triumph in the most populous state, where the party won 325 seats out of 403 with its allies.Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, a former UP CM, is said to be among the frontrunners for the coveted job because of his stature and administrative experience. However, he had himself dismissed the possibility.Interestingly, Maurya, who was till today considered one of the frontrunners for the post of CM, ruled himself out, saying he had been entrusted with the job of “selecting the next CM”.When asked who would be the next UP CM, Amit Shah today said, “We will give our stamp of approval to Keshav’s pick”.Speaking to reporters later, Maurya himself ruled out his chances of becoming CM. “My responsibility is to zero in on the next name. How can anyone pick their own name?”With Maurya not in the race now, the spotlight has now shifted to other contenders with Manoj Sinha, Kalraj Mishra, Uma Bharti, Yogi Adityanath and Lucknow mayor Dinesh Sharma being the top ones. Among them, Manoj Sinha, is an upper caste Bhumihar from the Poorvanchal belt where PM Modi's constituency Varanasi is also located. While Rajnath Singh and Sinha are upper caste Thakur and Bhumihar respectively, Maurya has emerged as OBC face of the party.
Rajnath to be the new CM of UP, Piyush Goyal to get Finance Ministry: Sources
BJP sets tone for 2019 Lok Sabha polls at its parliamentary party meet:PTI
Oath-taking ceremony of Uttarakhand CM on March 18, but no clarity on name
BJP UP chief Maurya admitted to ICU: Report
New Delhi:Keshav Prasad Maurya,UP unit chief of the BJP and a CM ial contender, was admitted to the ICU of RML Hospital in New Delhi, news agency ANI reported. It said the leader has problems related to blood pressure and will remain under observation today. Maurya may be discharged from hospital on Friday.Maurya is being considered as one of the front-runners for CM’s post after the BJP and its allies rallied to a landslide win in 325 out of the state’s 403 constituencies. indianexpress
Amarinder Singh sworn in as Punjab CM
Capt. Amarinder Singh on Thursday was sworn in as the 26th CM of Punjab in the presence of Congress leaders, including ex-PM Manmohan Singh and Rahul Gandhi. Thehindu
Parrikar wins floor test with 22 votes in Goa Assembly
Manohar Parrikar won the vote of confidence in the Goa Assembly with 22 votes in his favour. Congress won 16 votes in its favour. However, Congress MLA Vishwajit Rane remained absent during the Assembly session.As of now, Protem Speaker Siddarth Kuncoliekar included, Parrikar's strength is 23 in the 40-member House.Later Kuncoliekar said that the vote count though declared by him on the Floor of House was 22/16, his support will be counted while sending report to Supreme Court.Thus it will be 23/16.thehindu
BJP's strong showing in state polls means India will not compromise in international spats: Chinese media
New Delhi: BJP's emphatic win in the state polls+ in India is not very good news for Beijing, a state-run Chinese news outlet wrote today.Global Times, the Chinese Communist Party's news outlet that focuses on foreign affairs, said today in an article that a resurgent BJP very likely means "more difficulties in making compromises" with New Delhi in international spats. See BJP's performance in assembly electionsPM Narendra Modi's "hard-line attitude" domestically and internationally will only harden, said Global Times. The article also cited other news sources as concluding that the 2019 national polls will be won by BJP."In the international arena, he (PM Modi) changed India's previous attitude of trying never to offend anyone and started to take a clear stance in controversies among other nations to maximize its own interests... If Modi wins the next election, India's current firm and tough manner is bound to continue..., it will likely mean more difficulties in making compromises in rows with other countries," the Global Times article today said. timesofindia
BJP tampered EVM, I will move court, says Mayawati
Lucknow: After a humiliating defeat in UP assembly polls, BSP chief Mayawati announced on Wednesday that her party would go to court and hold agitation against the BJP, which, she said tampered with the electronic voting machines. Addressing media at the party headquarters in Lucknow, after paying tributes to her party founder Kanshi Ram on his birth anniversary, Mayawati said her party will organise demonstration on the 11th of every month in all district HQRS of UP and state headquarters of other states."We are not going to sit quiet," said Mayawati, adding that the BJP's victory was fake and achieved through unfair means. "The faces and language of BJP leaders show that their victory is unfair," she said. Daring the BJP to get repolling done through ballot papers to "prove its honesty", she said, "But I know BJP will never do so.They are afraid that their fraud would be exposed." Mayawati said it seemed that the tampering with EVMs was done strategically only in UP and Uttarakhand. "Had it been in other states, the BJP would have been exposed," she said, even as party workers raised a slogan: " Loktantra ki hatya band karo...(stop murdering democracy)".She added that BJP was spreading rumour that Muslim women voted in its favour on the issue of triple talaq. "There cannot be a bigger lie than that. Muslims will follow their religion, not BJP," she said.TOI
BSP cites Hapur seat results to raise questions over EVMs
EVM tampering row: Azam Khan now backs Mayawati
Lucknow: BSP supremo Mayawati’s claim of EVM tampering in the UP Assembly elections, Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan on Thursday said what more proof can one want when all opposition parties have come up with the same opinion. “Somebody had to come to power. The opposition would have said something. But why the BSP, Congress is also saying the same thing? The BJP’s party workers are also shocked by the result. What more proof do you want?” Khan told ANI.Quoting the examples of other countries adopting ballot system of voting, Khan said the country, which first manufactured EVMs is itself in favour of the former electoral system. “What is the reason that the country, which manufactured this machine, does not use it? Japan made it but ballots are used there. Europe, America all resort to ballot system,” he said. “Developed countries like Germany have set up commissions, inquiry set-ups and they have also opined that some tampering can be done and that is why they have adopted ballot system,” he added.He further said if various parties have expressed doubts then this should be resolved.ANI
Posters in UP's Bareilly village ask Muslims to leave
Bareilly: Jianagla, a village 70 km from Bareilly, is in the grip of tension ever since posters sprang up at more than 2 dozen places in the area ordering its Muslim residents to "leave immediately". The message, in Hindi, said that "with BJP in power in UP Hindus of the village would do what US president Trump was doing to Muslims in that country".The posters have turned up days after the BJP won a massive majority in the state. "What Trump is doing in America, we will do in this village because the BJP is now in power," the posters said, giving Muslims of Jianagla time till the end of the year to leave. The posters are signed by "Hindus of the village", under "guardian" is the name of a BJP MP.Most of the posters have been removed by police and the administration but a few still dot the walls, adding to the palpable panic. Text in all posters is the same and threatens the Muslims of "dire consequences" if they do not leave at the latest by the end of the year.The posters appeared overnight, and could be seen everywhere by Monday morning. Residents of Jianagla said they had no idea how this happened, even though most of them celebrated Holi till late on Sunday night."We slept a little past midnight, and it was only in the morning that we noticed all these posters around the village. We informed police after some residents objected to it," gram pradhan Rewa Ram told TOI. An FIR against unidentified persons has been lodged and five youths from the village have been picked up for questioning so far, said officials. A police force has also been deployed. Of Jianagla's nearly 2,500 residents, around 200 are Muslims.TOI
In UP Village, Posters Appeared Asking Muslims To Leave
This image of grieving 9-year-old boy becomes a symbol of Kashmir’s suffering
Begumbagh:A picture, it is said, is worth a thousand words and a photograph of an anguished Kashmiri boy with tears rolling down his cheeks said volumes last week about the human suffering sweeping the region.The snapshot, taken at the funeral of a teenager killed during an encounter in Padgampora of Pulwama in south Kashmir, is already being described by some as the defining image of the tragedy: Something as powerful as that of a young man seeking to block the advance of tanks in China’s Tiananmen Square or that of the lifeless body of Aylan Kurdi who perished while trying to escape the Syrian war.Kashmiri boy catapulted to public gaze, however, considers himself no celebrity.For 9-year-old Burhan Fayaz, picture just captured his angst and despair at losing his best friend, Amir. “I am still sad,” the student of Class 3 in Begumbagh’s govt primary school said.His friend Amir was among the hundreds of locals who had run towards the encounter site with a view to disrupt the security operation and let the militants escape. Villagers physically attempting to help cornered militants by hurling stones at security forces are a new phenomenon in Kashmir, despite stern warnings from army chief Bipin Rawat. Amir, a student of Class 9, died after being hit by a bullet in the neck. His family says he was ‘targeted’ while the police say the villain was a ‘stray bullet’. Thousands, including Burhan, attended the funeral in his Begumbagh village, some four kilometres from the site of the gun battle where he was felled.“Amir was like my brother. Who will I play with now,” an inconsolable Burhan asks now. HT
Withdraw AFSPA from some areas, says Mehbooba Mufti
&K CM Mehbooba Mufti on Wednesday called for the revocation of the AFSPA from some areas of her state. “We should not shy away from revocation of the AFSPA. When things improve, why not?” she asked at an Indian Foundation counter-terrorism conference in New Delhi. “We do not shy away when the situation goes bad. We do not shy away from calling more forces….But when the situation improves, we should not shy away from the fact that we need to start revocation of AFSPA from some places and see what is the impact,” she said. Indianexpress
J&K: Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz, Yasin Malik arrested
Srinagar:Police on Thursday arrested separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Yasin Malik in Srinagar after they tried to stage a protest. The three were scheduled to hold a joint press conference at Geelani’s residence for which the authorities denied them permission. Separatist leaders were taken into preventive custody and shifted to the Humhama police station in Badgam district.IANS
How Rohingya Muslim Refugees In Delhi Are Fighting Prejudice Through Football: scoopwhoop.com
CR Park Mela Ground in south Delhi is no Maracana, the sprawling mecca of world football. It will probably take you less than a few minutes to walk across the breadth of it. It has steel poles instead goalposts and the outfield is deceptively patchy. A slab of concrete, which doubles up as a stage for local functions, rests bang in the middle of the field. But Mohammad Salim's eyes light up as he surveys the field. "I feel free every time I am on a football field," says the 23-year-old. In 2012, when Salim, a Rohingya Muslim refugee from Myanmar, walked all night from Maungdaw township to the Bangladesh border town of Teknaf, he had forgotten how to play football. "For years we were being persecuted in Myanmar. I had secured top grades in my high school but I was barred from attending college because I am a Rohingya Muslim. I was always good in sports, but my parents would ask me not to show off because they feared persecution," says Salim, who now runs a laptop repairing shop in New Delhi's Uttam Nagar. Salim is among thousands of Rohingya Muslim migrants from Myanmar who have taken shelter in India. Rohingyas are a stateless ethnic group loathed by many of Myanmar’s Buddhist majority. Rohingya people lack legal protection fromGovt of Myanmar and are regarded as refugees from Bangladesh. They are often described as one of the most persecuted people on earth. In 2012, many Rohingya Muslims, like Salim, were forced to give up everything to seek better fortunes elsewhere after ethnic violence erupted in Arakan or Rakhine state in Myanmar. Many, like Salim, came to India, with nothing but the shirts on their back - and horrifying stories of rape, torture and murder.Today, Rohingya Muslims of Capital have formed the Rohingya Human Rights Initiative to help Rohingya asylum-seekers in India rehabilitate themselves. "And we think football is a great way to make Rohingya youngsters bond with people of city. Sports brings people together," says Riyaz, another Rohingya Muslim youth who works as an interpreter in a Social Legal Information Centre.
 ‘Fatwa’ against Assam singer Nahid Afrin that never was
Nahid Afrin is an over-achiever by all standards. At 16, she has been a playback singer in a mainstream Bollywood film, finished second in the country’s most high-profile musical reality show and has won so many awards in singing competitions across the country that she doesn’t even bother to count them. So, when news broke that a fatwa had been issued against her by some 46 Muslim clerics, warning her to stop singing as it was “against the Sharia”, there was, understandably, an outrage. Enough outrage for even national news channels to take notice and Assam’s CM to tweet condemning the “fatwa” and assuring the young woman of his govt’s commitment to protect her freedom of speech and safety. Even Taslima Nasreen tweeted out, expressing support and solidarity for Afrin.According to a report in the TOI, Assam Police was also looking to investigate an Islamic State angle to the episode.All extremely heartening, expect for that fact there may not have been a fatwa at all. The primary evidence of the supposed fatwa is a leaflet signed by 46 Muslim men, which was distributed in the districts of Hojai and Nagaon.While the leaflet does categorically mention that March 25 programme at Udali Sonai Bibi College in Lanka in Hojai district, where Afrin was scheduled to perform was “against the Sharia”, it does not as much as even mention Afrin’s name. The leaflet, which is headlined Guhari (translates into request/appeal), asks people not to attend March 25 event. “If anti-Sharia acts like musical nights are held on grounds surrounded by masjids, idgahs, madrassas and graveyards, our future generations will attract the wrath of Allah,” it reads.The secretary of the Assam State Jamiat Ulama, Maulvi Fazlul Karim Qasimi, stressed that no fatwa has been issued in this case and blamed the media for spreading misinformation. “Is this how a fatwa is issued? On a piece of paper?”The venue in question, Qasimi said, was in close proximity to religious and educational institutes and there have been instances of people creating a ruckus during similar shows in the past. “The appeal simply states that people might as well avoid the event since there have been instances of people getting drunk and vitiating the atmosphere in the past,” he claimed. Maulvi insisted that the community was proud of Afrin – and the notice had nothing to do with her in particular. “It is just that she was performing in that particular venue.”scroll
No Fatwa issued against anyone, Assam Jamiat Ulema says on row over Nahid Afrin event
Maharashtra to survey Waqf properties soon
Pune: With several complaints coming in regarding encroachments on Waqf properties, the state govt has sanctioned Rs 1.7 crore for a pilot project under which as many as 438 properties spread on nearly 903 hectares in the district will be surveyed and checked for encroachments and title on the record of rights. The survey will be carried out initially in Pune and Parbhani from March to May.TOI
Council approves all 5 draft bills for GST
GST Council, headed by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and comprising representatives of all States, on Thursday endorsed supplementary legislations needed for implementation of the GST regime.For the purpose of empowerment, cap of cess on demerit goods on top of peak rate of GST has been kept at 15%, Jaitley said after the Council meeting. Supporting GST laws would now be taken to the Cabinet and then to the Parliament for approval, he added. GST Council would meet on March 31 for framing of rules for Goods and Service Tax regime, Jaitley said, adding that tax rates for various goods and services would be taken up after framing of rules.PTI
Will move heaven and earth to implement Muslim quota: Chandrasekhar Rao
Hyderabad: Telangana Govt would not hesitate to "fight" with the Centre, if necessary, for the implementation of its proposed Muslims quota act, CM K Chandrasekhar Rao said today.PTI
Ishrat encounter case: Amin, Barot killed terrorists, their reappointments ‘not arbitrary’, govt tells Gujarat HC
Ahmedabad:Defending its decision to reappoint 2 police officials, accused in the Ishrat Jahan encounter case, after their superannuation, the Gujarat govt on Wednesday told the High Court that “the case against the officers are that of killing terrorists and the state never granted sanction of prosecution”, and “their reappointment is not so shocking or arbitrary”. Responding to a PIL challenging the appointment of SP NK Amin and DySP Tarun Barot, additional solicitor general Tushar Mehta argued before a division bench that the “performance of these two officers were always outstanding. One of the officers (Amin) was discharged from one criminal case (Sohrabuddin encounter). The reviewing officers of the two officers termed them outstanding. It’s not so shocking or arbitrary as claimed in the PIL. indian express
Bhopal: Maha ATS detains engineer in terror case
Khargone: Team of Maharashtra ATS detained one 26-year-old engineer from Khargone district in connection with Shajapur train blast on Tuesday, officials said. According to local police, a team of 8 officers of ATS Maharashtra picked up Avesh Shaikh, son of Zakir Sheikh, resident of Talai Marg, Khargone from his residence on Tuesday late evening with the help of MP Police.“Shaikh has not been placed under arrest so far. We are examining his role in the case,” the official said without elaborating further. Freepressjournal
With India at 148th in number of women MPs, UN official moots quotas
UN: Releasing a world ranking of the number of women parliamentarians that that placed India at number 148, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women — the international organisation’s arm for empowering women — has called for reservations for women.The rankings of all 193 UN member countries released here on Wednesday by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and UN Women showed that women made up 11.8 %  of the Lok Sabha where 64 were elected to the 542-member house and 11 %  of the Rajya Sabha with 27 of 245 members.India ranked 88 in the number of women Ministers with 5 or 18.5 %  in the cabinet. IANS
UN body proposes extension of Istanbul-Teheran-Islamabad train corridor to Delhi-Kolkata-Dhaka
New Delhi:A UN body has proposed extension of the Istanbul-Teheran-Islamabad (ITI) train corridor to Delhi-Kolkata-Dhaka (DKD) to promote regional cooperation. It maintained that the train corridor has the potential to become an important transport artery for intra-regional trade and an important conduit of Asia’s connectivity with Europe.“Operationalisation of a cohesive international transport network faces gaps and challenges in South and South-West Asia, compared to other subregions of Asia and the Pacific,” Matthew Hammill, officer-in-charge of UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, said here.ESCAP, as the regional development arm of the UN for the Asia-Pacific region, is mandated with the promotion of regional cooperation for sustainable development. Transport connectivity is a cornerstone of regional cooperation, shaping regional production networks and trade patterns through its impact on competitiveness. indianexpress
Ignoring Pak warning, India fast-tracks Kashmir hydro projects: Reuters
India has fast-tracked hydropower projects worth $15 billion in Kashmir in recent months, 3 federal and state officials said, ignoring warnings from Islamabad that power stations on rivers flowing into Pakistan will disrupt water supplies. The swift approval of projects that had languished for years came after PM Modi suggested last year that sharing the waterways could be conditional on Pakistan clamping down on anti-India militants that New Delhi says it shelters. Pakistan opposed some of these projects before, saying they violate a World Bank-mediated treaty on sharing of Indus river and its tributaries upon which 80% of its irrigated agriculture depends.
Pak Jamaat-i-Islami for protecting minorities’ rights
Peshawar: Jamaat-i-Islami Pak has urged the federal govt to take pragmatic steps for protection to the rights of minorities by providing them with all basic facilities like other citizens in the country. These views were expressed by JI provincial emir Mushtaq Ahmed Khan. Tariq Sadiq Gill, a member of Christian community, and an independent member of Risalpur Cantonment Board, joined the JI.Ahmad welcomed the joining of JI by the member of minority community and promised his party would take all possible steps to resolve the problems of non-Muslims.He demanded of the govt to ensure protection of constitutional rights of the minorities and provide them facilities of education and health without any discrimination. dawn
Pakistan asks Facebook to block 'blasphemous content', seeks Interpol help to curb it online
After a Pakistani court last week threatened to ban social media networks if they failed to censor content considered insulting to Islam, the country's main investigation agency said it's asked Facebook to block "blasphemous" content. It added that the agency is also in talks with Interpol to identify "blasphemous" content, reported Dawn. timesofindia
Experts say war crimes case against Assad govt growing
Geneva;Criminal investigators say they have built a case documenting the widespread torture and murder of Syrian detainees by Assad govt, relying on official photos and meticulous documents.Over 700,000 pages from Syrian intelligence and security archives have been smuggled out by Commission for International Justice and Accountability (CIJA), an independent group of legal experts, through a secret network."The documentation is, in the main, generated by the security-intelligence, military and political structures of the regime," William Wiley, who has worked for UN war crimes tribunals on former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, said. Reuters
Dutch PM easily defeats far-right rival anti-Islam Wilders
Mark Rutte, the Dutch PM, has easily defeated his far-right rival Geert Wilders, partial vote counts show, in elections seen as a measure of populist support in Europe.With more than 93% of votes counted, Rutte's liberal VVD party was set to win 33 seats, making it the largest in the new 150-seat parliament, with Wilders and his Freedom Party beaten into second place with 20 seats, Dutch national broadcaster NOS said.Millions of Dutch flocked to the polls in a near-record turnout, with the stakes high in an election pitting the pro-European Rutte against his anti-immigration and anti-EU rival. aljazeera
 Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 9:30 PM) 


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