12 April 2017

12 April 2017: 14 Rajab 1438: Vol: 8, No:164
Unverifiable witness, probe lapses: Why Aseemanand was acquitted in Ajmer blast case
New Delhi: Procedural lapses and dependence on an unverifiable witness by the prosecution led the court trying 2007 Ajmer blast case to dismiss the judicial confession of Swami Aseemanand, paving the way for his acquittal, court documents accessed by HT show.Aseemanand’s confessional statement made in Dec.2010 was the most credible evidence against him as it was recorded by a judicial magistrate, giving it legal sanctity. He, however, retracted the statement later. Ajmer case was initially probed by Rajasthan police but was handed over to NIA in 2011. Aseemanand was arrested on Nov.18, 2010 by CBI, which was probing the Mecca Masjid blast in Hyderabad that killed 14 people in May 2007. The case was later handed over to NIA. Since the Ajmer case was registered in Hyderabad, a city court dealt with Aseemanand’s custodial hearings since his arrest. But his confession was recorded by a magistrate in Delhi and not in Hyderabad, which went against the prosecution.CBI investigating officer (IO) T Rajabalaji told the court that since the accused had information about a Delhi connection into the Mecca Masjid blast probe, he was brought to national capital. It was here that Aseemanand allegedly expressed his desire to repent and confess, the court documents said quoting the IO. Since the confessional statement of Aseemanand was connected with the probe into the Ajmer case also, prosecution relied upon it during the trial. However, special NIA judge Dinesh Gupta said in his judgment that the magistrate should have recorded reasons given by the IO to bring Aseemanand to Delhi and also why he was confessing in the national capital.The court said that on Dec.15, Aseemanand was in Mumbai with the IO and he could have been taken to Hyderabad from there. Aseemanand was produced before a magistrate in Delhi on Dec.16. HT
Mumbai court to decide on no-bailable warrant against Zakir Naik tomorrow
Mumbai:A special PMLA court on Wednesday reserved its order on Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) plea seeking a non-bailable warrant against Zakir Naik. It will hear the plea again on Thursday. ED on Tuesday moved a plea in the special court seeking the NBW on the ground that Naik had failed to cooperate with the investigation.ED’s counsel Hiten Venegaonkar said depsite issuing several summons Naik had failed to appear before the agency. hindustantimes
Darul-Uloom asks clerics to skip TV debates on ‘triple talaq’
Deoband-based Islamic seminary Darul-Uloom on Tuesday made an appeal to Muslim clerics to avoid participation on television channel debates on issues such as ‘triple talaq’, four marriages and common civil code.In a statement issued by seminary, Maulana Abdul Kasim, in charge, said that even when the issues like ‘triple talaq’ and common civil code are under court’s consideration and government’s target, TV channels with negative agenda are creating an environment of confusion and projecting the community in poor light.“The ulema and clerics are expected not to participate in debates on TV channels which are focused on such issues related to Muslims,” he appealed while alleging that the only purpose of these debates is to make unholy attempt to interfere in the undisputed decisions of the ‘Shariyat’.New channels taking up the issues by inviting the so called Muslim women and representatives is painting a different picture.Such debates are never joined in by strong Ulema and others should also avoid participating in TV debates as they end up portraying a wrong picture of the community and gives a wrongful description of the Shariyat.All those who want to have knowledge on issues related to Islam must contact the Madarsas spread across the country and also Darul-Ifta, said the Maulana. hindustantimes
UP govt to take views of Muslim women on triple talaq issue
Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh government has decided to elicit views of Muslim women on the issue of triple talaq based on which it will present its side in the Supreme Court hearing the matter.“The state government will put its side in the SC on triple talaq after taking views of Muslim women”, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said while holding a meeting with the Women and Child Development Department yesterday night.Directing officials to prepare a plan for taking views of Muslim women, CM asked minister of the department and all women ministers in his cabinet “to talk to women organisations”. A two-day meeting of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) scheduled here from April 15 will also be discussing the issue of tripe talaq.The CM also directed officials to prepare rules regarding compulsory marriage registration in the state. During the presentation of the minority department, the Chief Minister asked officials to modernise madrasa education and include English, professional and skill development courses also. He also directed that land be identified in every district for construction of community centres for minorities and all arrangements be made for Haj pilgrims. indianexpress
Hindu Yuva Vahini points at ‘ISI activities, Chinese incursion, Kashmir situation’ for disrupting church services in Maharajganj: twocircles
Maharajganj: The disruption of Church services at Maharajaganj brought the activities of Hindu Yuva Vahini into the limelight for all the wrong reasons. But what if we told you that according to HYV, their actions were, in fact, a response to the actions of Pakistan’s intelligence agency ISI, China, Nepal and Kashmiri youth?A conversation with Narsingh Pandey, the district president of Hindu Yuva Vahini revealed that far from being apologetic for their actions, they, in fact, have an elaborate explanation of why they did so. And it sounds, well, straight out of Conspiracy theory 101. Pandey claims that religious conversion was “definitely going on that day” when police reached the site but attendees denied because they had offerings.He said, “We got information that foreigners were staying there. We asked the district administration if they had the info about the stay of foreigners in Maharajganj.“We were receiving substantial information from locals that various things were happening, including the fact that these people were luring and converting people. But we are bound to act by the law. So, we decided to understand the situation first and then act with the help of the administration,” said Pandey.Remarks made by Pandey over the issue substantiate his stand that it was the presence of US nationals on the site of the incident that led to the ‘disruption’. And Narsingh Pandey, who lives in Nautanwa, around 80 kilometers far from the Maharajganj, played a key role in mobilising the local cadre to ‘control’ the situation on Friday. He said that he was on alert as members of the organisation had caught various religious conversion events in the same region.But Pandey’s biggest ‘revelation’ came after this. “This area (Gorakhpur) is close to the Indo-Nepal border. ISI conducts their activities there.Chinese incursion is also happening for this reason. They are making training camps in Nepal. And because of all of this and patronage of Congress regime in the past, stone pelting is happening in Jammu and Kashmir. These are the reasons why we are always on the alert in this region.”Meanwhile, US Embassy India took note of the incident and is keeping eye on every update in the case.TwoCircles
Hindu Yuva Vahini members ‘barge’ into house; beat up Muslim man, girlfriend
Meerut: Activists of the Hindu Yuva Vahini (HYV) allegedly barged into a house and thrashed a Muslim man, who was with his girlfriend — also a Muslim — in Shastri Nagar area of Meerut on Tuesday. The two were later handed over to the police by HYV members and the residents.Alok Priyadarshi, the Police Chief of Meerut city, told the media that Wasim and the woman were released later that day.According to members of the HYV and Nagendar Pratap Singh Tomar, chief of HYV’s western Uttar Pradesh unit, the two were found in a “compromising” position when they forcibly entered the house. Tomar said that the local residents were “disturbed” that Wasim, who works in a hotel in Muzaffarnagar, and stays in Shastri Nagar, “was bringing his girlfriend to his house.”TheHindu
 Hindu Yuva Vahini harasses interfaith couple in Meerut
Couple In UP Harassed By Hindu Yuva Vahini
Adityanath: Wishes public on Hazrat Ali’s birthday, but changes name of Ali Nagar to Arya Nagar
Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath tweeted on the occasion of Hazrat Ali’s birthday and wished the general public, but this is unlikely to do much in changing his image of a hardcore Hindu nationalist.Before the UP elections, Yogi had admitted that he wishes to change the names of various localities which have Islamic name or conjuncture to the name: like, converting the name of Islam Nagar to Ishwar Nagar and Humayun Nagar to Hanuman Nagar.The interesting fact is that Yogi did not put the name changing as a proposal or an announcement, but instead took such actions directly. For example, the town Ali Nagar in his Loksabha constituency Gorakhpur was renamed as Arya Nagar, just as Miyan Bazaar was changed to Maya Bazaar and Urdu Bazaar was changed to Hindi Bazaar.Once he batted for a change in the name of Azamgarh,because it didn’t reflect “the Aryan culture of India”.It is evident in Gorakhpur that Yogi Adiyanath has changed the names of atleast a dozen of Mohallas. Locals say that he will do more. TwoCircles
'You Can Protect Cows, Not Women?' Jaya Bachchan On BJP Youth Leader Yogesh Varshney's Threat
New Delhi: A BJP youth worker's comment in Bengal declaring a "Rs. 11 lakh bounty" for Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was disowned today by the party in parliament, where furious opposition lawmakers targeted the government."You can protect cows, but women are facing atrocities," Samajwadi Party MP Jaya Bachchan said in the Rajya Sabha. Ndtv
Nuh lawyers allege Alwar cops of botched FIR in Pehlu lynching case
Gurgaon: The district bar association of Nuh (Mewat) has accused Alwar police of botching up facts in the FIR registered in the murder of Jaisinghpur villager Pehlu Khan, who was lynched by gau rakshaks in Alwar a few days ago. The association has decided to move to the Prime Minister, seeking justice for the family of Pehlu Khan, who was killed after allegedly being mistaken as a cow smuggler. They have alleged Alwar police meddled with facts while registering the FIRs, to deny the victims justice.The association said was Pehlu presumed to be a cow smuggler merely because he is a Muslim. The family of the deceased claimed their statements were not even recorded by police.TOI
I pray Allah to save my son; he is nearing death: Elderly father of Alwar lynching survivor;-he-is-nearing-death-elderly-father-of-alwar-lynching-survivor
Mewat (Haryana),: In his seventies, Mohammad Suleman is pinning hope in the government to ensure justice for his elder son who was brutally assaulted by a gang of self-proclaimed Gau Rakshaks (cow protectors) in Alwar district of Rajasthan earlier this month.Sitting beside the bed of his son Azmat, Suleman prays Allah to save his son whose condition is serious. Azmat, in his twenties, was hit in head, eye, chest, waist and backbone."I pray Allah to save my son. He is nearing death, you can see," Suleman tells visitors who ranging from common people to community leaders have been coming to his home in Haryana for the past one week."We have spent around Rs 70,000 on his treatment," says pointing towards Azmat who is lying on the bed with broken backbone. "He had purchased cows with RS 80,000-90,000," he says when asked about his demand from the government.IndiaTomorrow
Killing of Pahlu Khan outrages people against violent cow vigilantism
New Delhi / Jaipur: People from Jaipur to Delhi are outraged against the brutal killing of dairy farmer Pahlu Khan by a gang of cow vigilantes (Gau Rakshaks) in Alwar district of Rajasthan last week. From Jaipur to Delhi, people have come out denouncing violent cow vigilantism and have asked the government to take strict action against the culprits immediately.In Jaipur, people held a protest demonstration and candle light vigil Monday evening.Sawai Singh, President of Nasha Mukt Bharat Samiti, termed as shameful the attempt of Rajasthan Home minister Gulab Chand Kataria to defend the cow vigilantes."Statement of Rajasthan Home Minister is very shameful. How can he defend attackers," Singh asked. Some peace activists gathered at Raj Ghat, the mausoleum of Mahatma Gandhi, in Delhi. They held a candle vigil and denounced violence by Gau Rakshaks across the country. Students of Jamia Millia Islamia also held a protest demonstration and candle light vigil.IndiaTomorrow
Azam Khan: ‘These days I feel scared of even seeing or touching a cow’
Noida:Samajwadi Party leader and former Uttar Pradesh minister Azam Khan today said that these days he feels scared of even seeing or touching a cow. This statement comes days after Khan had returned a cow that was gifted to him by a seer. “Muslims were living in an atmosphere of insecurity … Any cow vigilante might harm or even kill the beautiful and beneficial animal to defame me and the Muslim community,” Khan had said while returning black cow gifted to him by Shankaracharya of Govardhan Peeth. financialexpress
AMU students’ union seeks total ban on cow slaughter across India
Aligarh: President of AMU Students’ Union has demanded a complete ban on cow slaughter across the country.Addressing protesters at a rally organised by the AMUSU at the District Collectorate today, its president Faizul Hasan said, “We would support any move made by the Central government to impose such a ban keeping in view the sentiments of Hindu brethren.”Hasan said he would also support a “complete ban” on the closure of all export-based slaughterhouses and a total ban on all import and export of bovine meat, including buffalo meat, because it was leading to an unnecessary internal tension between different communities in the country.PTI
Ranchi: 4 people injured in violence during Bajrang Dal members' rally near mosque
Violence erupted when Bajrang Dal members, who had taken out a rally to mark Mahavir Jayanti, allegedly played an objectionable song in front of a mosque.4 people were injured in Ranchi on Tuesday, eyewitnesses said, after violence erupted when Bajrang Dal members, who had taken out a rally on Main Road to mark Mahavir Jayanti, allegedly played an objectionable song in front of a mosque.Clashes began after members from both the communities hit the road and started raising slogans. The authorities deployed several platoons of policemen who had to resort to lathicharge to quell the protesting crowds. Situation was under control by evening. SSP Kuldeep Dwivedi said, “Everything is back to normal now. We haven’t heard of anyone being injured so far. The tensions happened because a provocative song was played in front of a religious place.”Apart from Ranchi, Bokaro also faced some communal tension on Tuesday. It began brewing after a cattle head was found in front of a house in a busy market area in Saudagar area, reported Dainik Jagran. Sub Divisional Police Officer RK Mehta’s suffered a fracture on his hand when both the communities pelted stones at each other. scroll
NO immediate execution of Indian spy ,says Khawaja Asif: Pak Tribune
Islamabad: Defence Minister Khawaja Mohammad Asif has ruled out immediate execution of a convicted Indian spy and said three appellate forums are available to Kulbhushan Jadhav under the law.He said that the trial of the Indian Navy officer — who was working for RAW and was arrested in March last year — lasted 3-and-a-half months. The charges he faced included spying for India, working against Pakistan’s integrity, sponsoring terrorism in the country and attempting to destabilise the state. paktribune
China accuses India of violating Tibet commitments, warns of actions
Beijing: China warned today it would take actions to "safeguard its sovereignty" and accused India of violating its commitments on Tibet, pointing to statements made by Arunachal Chief Minister Pema Khandu and the Dalai Lama.In its strongest statement yet on the Dalai Lama's Arunachal visit, the Chinese Foreign Ministry today said, "Recently in disregard of China's concerns, the Indian side insisted on arranging activities in the disputed eastern section of the China-India border and indulged provocative statements by the 14th Dalai Lama and a specific Indian official. This shows activity by Dalai Lama has exceeded so called scope of religious activities." India today
BJP youth wing leader offers 'bounty of Rs.11 lakh on Mamata’s head'
Aligarh:Yogesh Varshney, a leader of BJP youth wing Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM), announced a ''bounty'' of Rs.11 lakh on West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee’s head after the police used batons to disperse a rally raising slogans in praise of Lord Ram on Hanuman Jayanti on Tuesday.PTI
Imam puts Rs 22L ‘counter-offer’ on BJP leader who put price on Mamata’s head
Kolkata:A Muslim cleric, known for announcing fatwas against political leaders including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and author Salman Rushdie, made a counter-offer of Rs 22 lakh for the BJP youth wing leader Yogesh Varshney’s head who announced a reward of Rs 11 lakh for beheading West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee.“Mamata Banerjee is our respected leader and I consider her as my sister. I will pay Rs 22 lakh to anyone who brings me the head of the BJP leader. It is expected that fascist RSS-BJP will be speaking the language of hoodlums,” said Nur-ur Rehman Barkati, imam of Kolkata’s Tipu Sultan Shahi Mosque.HT
Jamia Millia Islamia students hold silent protest against Kashmir killings
New Delhi: A day after Indian security forces killed 8 youths and injured more than 17, students of Jamia Millia Islamia held a silent protest against the killings inside the campus.Dozens of students from BA program held a silent sit-in in front of central canteen holding placards “Kashmiryat Insaniyat Jamhooriyat, We want peace, Kashmiri lives matter, Stop human rights violation in Kashmir” denouncing the killings in Kashmir.“Everyone is silent on the issue of killings in Kashmir. Not many people speak on this issue that’s why we decided to organise this protest,” said Abdul Kabir, a student of BA Programme, JMI.Twocircles
MCD polls: Kejriwal demands withdrawal of ‘tampered’ EVMs from Rajasthan, wants VVPAT machines
New Delhi:Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday demanded withdrawal of allegedly tampered EVMs brought from Rajasthan for MCD polls and said only VVPAT equipped voting machines should be used in the elections.In his letter to State Election Commissioner SK Srivastava, he also demanded that state and nationally recognised parties should be allowed to examine EVMs to be used in the elections.The AAP national convener sought to know why the SEC asked for Generation 1 EVMs, which are least secure with the minimum security features, to conduct MCD elections.“We are really surprised that you (Srivastava) did not ask for VVPAT machines…Recent incidents of EVM manipulations from Dholpur show that BJP has successfully managed to tamper the code/software of EVMs in Rajasthan because the state has BJP government and all machines are in their custody,” he alleged in the letter.PTI
Delhi Municipal polls: BJP’s Muslim faces bank on Modi magic
New Delhi:Municipal elections may be fought on civic issues like public sanitation and broken roads, but the 6 Muslim candidates fielded by BJP, including the non-Muslim wife of a Muslim member, are relying on PM Narendra Modi's popularity to garner votes. The first-time contestants hope the emotional appeal of Modi's 'sabka saath sabka vikas' slogan will shatter the perception that Muslims don't vote for the saffron party."If anything, the party's electoral victories in the past 3 years and the results in UP have shown that Muslims want to be a part of the mainstream," declared Atif Rashid, president, Delhi Minority Morcha. BJP may not have nominated any Muslim as a candidate in UP, but have not shied from giving them the responsibility of winning from areas in the capital dominated by the community. Of course, Rashid hastily clarified that "BJP is a party that gives tickets to candidates not based on caste or religion, but on their ability to win."Dr Sunita Singh, wife of BJP member Abrar Siddiqui, is trying her luck in the all-women constituency of Sarita Vihar. A homeopathic doctor, Singh believes that her party's stand on the untenability of triple talaq will rake in the votes of Muslim women. Others, of course, think that national issues like these will not influence the electors. As Mohammad Tariq, a tailor at Abul Fazal Enclave, pointed out, "Muslims will vote on local issues, not factors like divorce laws." Voters elsewhere shared similar thoughts. Said Dr Anwar Zahir in the Batla House ward: "We have a problem of drinking water here, besides terrible sewerage that leads to dengue and malaria." Asked why Muslim-majority areas appeared to be so neglected despite his party holding the reins in the municipal corporations for the past decade, BJP candidate from the seat, Kunwar Rafi, glibly blamed the incumbent Congress councillor.Faimuddin Saifi, BJP candidate from Delhi Gate ward, agrees that local issues will colour the outcome of the polls. Another factor that the BJP candidates calculate will give them victory is the high number of candidates in the fray and the resulting division of votes. TOI
MCD elections: In Quresh Nagar, BJP pins hopes on ‘proxy candidate’ of influential Muslim family
Opposition meets President, says ‘environment of fear, insecurity prevailing in the country’
New Delhi;Opposition parties led by Congress on Wednesday met President Pranab Mukherjee seeking his urgent intervention “to protect constitutional democracy and fundamental rights” of citizens. They discussed range of issues, including alleged tampering of EVMs and key bills being disguised as money bill in Parliament by the government. The delegation of leaders also presented a memorandum to him listing their various concerns and urged the President to ensure that constitutional democracy and fundamental rights of citizens are protected. INDIN express
ISIS not involved in Agra explosions, no plan to target Taj Mahal surfaced during investigation: govt
New Delhi: No involvement of ISIS or planned targeting of Taj Mahal has surfaced in connection with the explosions in Agra on March 17 and 18 this year, the Rajya Sabha was informed on Wednesday.Replying to a question, Minister of State for Home Affairs Hansraj Gangaram Ahir said according to information received from the Uttar Pradesh Police, explosions took place near Agra Cantt Railway Station and Saraikhwaja in Agra on March 17 and 18.PTI
Income Tax department probes RSS leader’s Delhi firm for Rs 17 cr deposit after note ban
New Delhi: The Income Tax department is investigating a clothing company owned by a top RSS leader in Delhi for alleged cash deposits of Rs 17 crore in scrapped notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 after the demonetisation policy was announced on November 8, 2016, sources told The Indian Express. The managing director of the firm being investigated, Ahujasons Shawlwale Private Ltd, is Kulbhushan Ahuja, the Delhi Prant Sanghchalak or Delhi state head of the RSS. According to company records, the firm has 3 other directors: Ahuja’s sons Bhuvan and Karan, and daughter-in-law Nidhi. indianexpress
Sita a matter of faith, no proof she existed, says culture minister Mahesh Sharma in Parliament
New Delhi:Sita is a matter of faith and there is no historical evidence that she existed, Union culture minister Mahesh Sharma said in the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday, triggering a debate on myth and history that often overlaps in India.Opposition members seized the minister’s remarks to taunt the BJP-led government that Sita’s husband, Hindu god Ram, is a matter of faith too if the same logic is applied.
I was tortured in custody, says  Bhatkal's Maulana Shabbir after acquitted in terror case: timesofindia
Karwar: Maulana Shabbir Gangawali Nadvi, who was acquitted by a Mangaluru court on Monday in an alleged terror link case, spoke about the nightmare he went through in the past decade after his arrest. At his house in Bhatkal on Tuesday, Shabbir said he had been arrested only because he hailed from Bhatkal town and was a moulana. "My entire family had to face sorrow and hardship," he said.He said he was first arrested by the anti-terror squad of Pune police in 2008 and he was named as an accused in the Chinnaswamy stadium blast case of 2010. "I was in jail when the blast took place in Bangaluru and despite that I was named in the case," he said.He said police came knocking on his door at midnight and took him him with his uncle. 'I was subjected to third-degree torture. They kept asking about the location of the absconding terrorists (Yasin Bhatkal and Riyaz Bhatkal).They beat me till I fainted," he said.
About 71 per cent polling recorded in Malappuram
Malappuram:About 71 per cent voting was recorded today in the bypoll for Malappuram Lok Sabha seat in Kerala with the exercise passing off peacefully.According to the polling officials, about 71 per cent polling was recorded in the constituency with around 13 lakh electorate. Counting will be held on April 17.PTI
Can’t allot plot for Sunni burial land, Mumbai Municipal Corporation tells HC
Mumbai: Brihnamumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) informed the Bombay High Court on Tuesday that it cannot file an undertaking that a plot will be provided for a burial ground for Sunni Muslims. A Division Bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice G.S. Kulkarni was hearing a public interest litigation filed by Mohammed Furqan Mohammed Ali Qureshi, a real estate developer from Bandra, who has complained that no land is available for burial grounds for Sunni Muslims in the H/West Ward. thehindu

Aligarh: Harassed by inlaws, Muslim woman threatens to embrace Hinduism
Aligarh: Tension prevailed in Jamalpur area here after activists of a Hindu outfit tried to intervene on behalf of a Muslim woman who was squatting outside her in- laws' house with her four-year-old daughter after the family refused to let them in.The woman Rihana (30) said she wanted justice for her daughter and herself but if it was denied she could resort to any extreme measure including embracing Hinduism.According to police, Rihana hailed from neighbouring Bulandshahr district and was married to Mohammad Shareef in 2012. Due to marital discord she and her child moved to her parents' house.When all efforts to reach an amicable settlement failed, Rihana, her daughter and her entire family went to her husband's house yesterday in a predominantly Muslim locality here, but were not allowed inside.The woman's family squatted at the door and soon a crowd gathered. Some prominent local Hindu Mahasabha leaders arrived and assured her they will take up her cause so she gets justice.The presence of Hindu activists led to tension in the area. Police officials rushed to the spot and defused the situation.In the evening, the Hindu activists took her to meet Puja Shakun, National General Secretary of the Mahasabha.Rihana told journalists her case had nothing to do with the issue of triple talaq.PTI
Petrol, diesel prices to change daily from 1 May
Mumbai/New Delhi: Petrol and diesel prices in some cities will now see daily change in sync with international rates, according to two officials from oil marketing companies.This will be effective 1 May in five cities including Puducherry and Visakhapatnam, Udaipur, Jamshedpur and Chandigarh as part of a pilot project. This will be extended to other parts of the country after an assessment of consumer response.Diesel and petrol prices move in tandem with the price of crude oil in most countries. In January, Mint reported that the fuel retailers plan to introduce dynamic pricing in India this year. livemint

Rebuttal to New Indian Express's baseless report "Caliphate Radicalisation Rising In India": Umar Shariff, The Milli Gazette
Ontario motion: Why neither Congress nor BJP will call 1984 riots a 'genocide': Catch News
Cow vigilantism or Muslim-hunting: Modi has nothing to gain, everything to lose from divisive agenda: Surjit S Bhalla

Hungarian top court repeals village's ban on mosques, burkas
Hungary's Constitutional Court has repealed a ban by a village led by a far-right mayor on the construction of mosques and headscarves like burkas and chadors worn by Muslim women.The court said today that the ban, also outlawing the activity of muezzins, infringed on freedoms of religion and speech.The measure had been in place since November in the village of Asotthalom, on the Serbian border, led by Mayor Laszlo Toroczkai of the far-right Jobbik party.PTI

China punishes official for not daring to smoke near Muslims:AP
BEIJING: Authorities in China's restive Xinjiang region have punished a local official for declining to smoke in front of Muslim elders, seeing that as a sign he was insufficiently committed to the region's fight against religious extremism, according to a government report and state media Tuesday.Jelil Matniyaz, Communist Party head of a village in Hotan Prefecture, was demoted for "not daring'' to smoke in front of religious figures, said the report, issued Saturday and reproduced by official newspapers and websites. Matniyaz, identified as a member of Xinjiang's indigenous Uighur ethnic minority, was cited by the report as not having a ``resolute political stance.''The state-run Global Times newspaper on Tuesday quoted other local officials as saying that government leaders should push back against rather than comply with religious prohibitions against smoking to demonstrate their "commitment to secularization.''TOI
Ex-president Ahmadinejad to run again in Iran presidential race
Ex-Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad submitted his name today for registration as a candidate in Iran’s presidential election in May, state media reported.The move by the former hardline president was seen as a challenge to the authority of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who had ordered him not to run.Registration for the 19 May election started on Monday and will last 5 days, after which entrants will be screened for their political and Islamic qualifications by a vetting body, the Guardian Council. Khamenei could use the Guardian Council as a hurdle to trip Ahmadinejad’s renewed political ambitions.Ahmadinejad rose to prominence in Iran by employing hardline rhetoric against the “Great Satan” and US.Under his presidency, Iran not only enhanced and accelerated its nuclear programme, but expanded its already strong influence in Iraq and Syria, and further strengthened its hold on Lebanese politics through an aggressive strategy of support for local Shia jihadist proxy Hezbollah.Coming from humble working class origins, Ahmadinejad lost significant popular support after he controversially appointed several close family members and allies from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) to senior positions within his administration. middleeastmonitor
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad registers to run for president
US: No doubt Syria used chemical weapons
US Secretary of Defense has said there is no doubt that the Syrian government was responsible for a poison gas attack last week on a rebel-held town, adding that it had used chemical weapons several times in the past.During a press conference in Washington on Tuesday, James Mattis told reporters that independent authorities had documented and concluded the use of chemical weapons in an air strike on Khan Sheikhoun in Idlib province. aljazeera
Muslim woman's hijab ripped off, assaulted in US
WASHINGTON: A Muslim woman's hijab was allegedly ripped off in the US by a man who she claimed beat her "like an animal" and repeatedly stepped on her head, prompting calls for a hate crime probe.The woman from Milwaukee was attacked as she walked home from prayer.Milwaukee police told FOX6 News they were investigating the crime.The incident happened on Monday and the victim was released from the hospital a day later."I said to myself, 'I am going to die today for sure.' So he gets up from the car and told me to come here," said the woman who was attacked.PTI
Turkish referendum polls put ‘yes’ vote slightly ahead
Two Turkish opinion polls today showed a narrow majority of Turks, between 51-52 per cent, would vote ”yes” in Sunday’s referendum on changing the constitution to create an executive presidency. Voters in Turkey will go to the polls on 16 April to decide whether to give President Recep Erdogan new powers. Voting by Turks abroad began as early as late March and finished on Sunday. A survey by pollsters ANAR put the “yes” vote on 52 per cent. Its poll was conducted face-to-face with more than 4,000 people on 5-10 April in 26 provinces.The number of undecided voters has fallen to eight per cent, ANAR said, adding that after distribution of these voters, there was a two percentage point rise in the “yes” vote compared with its survey at the start of March.The results only apply to voters in Turkey, with the level of “yes” support among voters abroad expected to raise the “yes” vote slightly, ANAR said in a statement shared on Twitter by its general manager Ibrahim Uslu. middleeastmonitor

 Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:02 PM)



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