06 November 2018

6 Nov. ND:Cong-JD(S) alliance wins 4 of 5 bypoll constituencies in Karnataka /Govt wants Rs 3.6 lakh crore from RBI, a third of its reserves, bank says no/Ex-RBI chief defends central bank call for autonomy

NEWS DIGEST, Afternoon 
06 Nov. 2018: 27 Safar 1440: Vol: 11, No:48
Cong-JD(S) alliance wins 4 of 5 bypoll constituencies in Karnataka
Bengaluru: Electoral calculations behind the formation of Congress-JD(S) coalition govt in the State got a shot in arm after winning 4 out of 5 assembly and parliamentary constituencies, including pulling off an unexpected upset in Ballari Lok Sabha seat.Bypoll elections had become a matter of prestige rather than one of governance as the terms for 3 Lok Sabha constituencies ends in barely 6 months. There are perhaps worrying signs for BJP which aims to keep intact their parliamentary seats in the upcoming 2019 General polls against a combined opposition in the state. In Ballari, BJP has relinquished Lok Sabha constituency for the first time since 1999 when Sonia Gandhi ran successfully from the district. The margin is also one of a concern for the BJP, where their candidate, ex MP J.Shanta has lost the seat to Congress’ V.S. Ugrappa, a newcomer to district’s political landscape, by more than 2.4 lakh votes.“It is a victory of the people, of principles and of secularism,” said Ugrappa. Counting had been halted in final 2 rounds due to technical reasons. While BJP did win the “battle of the sons” in Shivamogga, its margin has come down. On Monday, BJP’s BS Raghavendra, son of BJP head BS Yeddyurappa, won against JD(S)’s Madhu Bangarappa, son of ex-CM S. Bangarappa, by a margin of 52,148 votes – similar to his victory in 2009 polls. In comparison, Yeddyurappa had won the seat in 2014 by a margin of 3.63 lakh votes (or,by a margin of 1.2 lakh over the cumulative votes of INC and JD(S)). If there is a sore point for JD(S), it is perhaps the performance of Bangarappa in his assembly seat in Sorab where he is trailing. Raghavendra, however, saw positives despite vote transfer between Congress and JD(S). The hindu
Karnataka bypolls results: Congress-JD(S) takes 4 of 5 seats, Kumaraswamy says will win all in 2019
ASI Order Bars Muslims From Offering Namaz at Taj Mahal Except on Fridays – Report
New Delhi:Archaeological Survey of India has banned Muslims from offering namaz at the mosque located at the premises of the Taj Mahal in Agra on all days except Fridays, the Times of India reported on Monday. On Sunday, the ASI reportedly locked the tank where devotees clean themselves before offering prayers. According to the report, even the imam and staff of the mosque have been asked to turn up only on Fridays.ASI officials have reportedly claimed that they are implementing the Supreme Court’s July order where the court had ruled that only local residents would be allowed to offer namaz on Fridays at the mosque located within the complex.The court had reasoned that the monument is one of the seven wonders of the world, and should be preserved. “Why for such prayers they should go to the Taj Mahal?” asked the bench of Justices A. Sikri and Ashok Bhushan.“There are other mosques also. They can offer their prayers there.”Superintending archaeologist, ASO (Agra circle) Vasant Swarankar said that the new rule is “as per the order of the apex court”.On Fridays, the Taj Mahal is closed to the general public. Agra residents are allowed to offer namaz at the mosque between noon and 2pm on Fridays after showing identity proof.In Jan, citing security reasons, Agra ADM had barred non-residents of Agra from offering prayers at the mosque. Calling it illegal and arbitrary, Syed Ibrahim Hussain Zaidi, the president of Taj Mahal Masjid Management Committee, had challenged this order in the Supreme Court.Zaidi told TOI that the party in power at both the centre and the state, has an “anti-Muslim mindset” and that he would be meeting with ASI officials to sort out the issue.thewire
RBI Show-Caused For Not Disclosing Names of Big Willful Defaulters
New Delhi:In perhaps its biggest action ever, the Central Information Commission (CIC) has sent a show-cause notice to RBI pulling up the central bank of the country for non-disclosure of the names and details of action taken against willful defaulters of big bad loans. According to LiveLaw.in, which has published the 2nd Nov. order of CIC, the CPIOs of RBI, PMO and office of the Finance Minister have also been directed to explain the action taken on the ‘alerting letter’ written by former Governor of RBI Raghuram Rajan in Feb. 2015.The CIC has sought reply before 16th Nov.While considering an appeal that had sought details about willful defaulters, Central Information Commissioner Sridhar Acharyalu observed: “The Commission finds no merit in hiding the names of, details and action against willful defaulters of big bad loans worth hundreds of crores of rupees. RBI shall disclose the bad debt details of defaulters worth more than 1000 crore at the beginning, of Rs 500 crore or less at later stage within five days and collect such information from the banks in due course to update their voluntary disclosures from time to time as a practice under Section 4(1)(b) of RTI Act.”Holding the RBI Governor directly responsible for nondisclosure and defiance of SC orders and CIC orders, the Commissioner has directed him to show cause why the maximum penalty should not be imposed on him for these reasons, before Nov.16, 2018. CIC also asked the concerned administrative officers of the Central Information Commission to explore possibilities enforcing the orders of Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi which were upheld by the Supreme Court dismissing the RBI’s appeal. caravandaily
Govt wants Rs 3.6 lakh crore from RBI, a third of its reserves, central bank says no
New Delhi : At the heart of the RBI-government standoff is a proposal by the Finance Ministry seeking to transfer a surplus of Rs 3.6 lakh crore, more than a third of the total Rs 9.59 lakh crore reserves of the central bank, to the government. The ministry has suggested that this surplus can be managed jointly by RBI and the govt. Finance Ministry claims that the existing economic capital framework — which governs RBI’s capital requirements and terms for the transfer of its reserves to the government — is based on a very “conservative” assessment of risk by the central bank.Sources have confirmed to Indian Express that the RBI views this attempt by the Government to dip into its reserves can adversely impact macro-economic stability. And so RBI has not accepted the proposed changes, sources said. For its part, the Finance Ministry argues that the current framework was “unilaterally” adopted by RBI in July 2017 because both the government nominees on the Board were not present during the meeting.The govt did not accede to this framework and has since then been constantly seeking discussions with RBI.indianexpress
India's ex-central bank chief defends RBI call for autonomy
Mumbai:Former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan defended the central bank’s call for greater autonomy from the government, saying ultimately the nation stands to benefit from an independent and robust RBI.In an interview on CNBC-TV 18 telecast on Tuesday Rajan said current rift between the central bank and the government can be resolved if both sides respect each other’s intent and autonomy.“As far as possible, it is in the interest of the country that we respect the institutional autonomy of RBI, as well as the traditions,” Rajan, who was succeeded by current governor Urjit Patel in September 2016, said.Tensions between the two sides came to the fore last month after a scathing speech by a top RBI official blew the lid off a fractious dispute between the bank and the govet of PM Narendra Modi on issues ranging from lending curbs, more cash availability to the non banking finance companies (NBFCs) to who controls institution’s reserves.Reuters
SBI fraud: 8 bank officials, Harshad Mehta’s brother acquitted in securities scam
A Mumbai court has acquitted 9 people, including Ashwin Mehta, brother of 1992 securities scam kingpin Harshad Mehta, in a case of duping the State Bank of India (SBI) to tune of Rs105 crore.Justice Shalini Phansalkar Joshi, who presides over the special court set up for cases related to the 1992 securities scam, said in her judgement last week that there was no hesitation in holding that that the prosecution had failed to prove case beyond reasonable doubt.Ashwin Mehta was a constituted attorney of Harshad Mehta and also one of the stock brokers in his brother's firms.Apart from Ashwin Mehta, those acquitted are Rama Sitharaman, officer in-charge of securities division of the SBI, and 7 other officials -- Bhushan Raut, C Ravi Kumar, S Suresh Babu, P Muralidharan, Ashok Agarwal, Janardhan Bandhopadhyay and Shyam Sundar Gupta.Nationalheraldindia
BJP to appoint around100 Muslim women as ‘teen talaq pramukhs’ across Uttar Pradesh
New Delhi: To make Muslim women understand and make them aware about the menace of tripple talaq, BJP in Uttar Pradesh plans to appoint around 100 women as 'teen talaq pramukhs'. They will ensure rehabilitation of the victims and their children. The party is also planning to do a survey in the month of Dec.to know that how many triple talaq victims are in UP.In view of 2019 Lok Sabha elections these exercise will work for the party as the party sources had been saying that the BJP had got more votes of Muslim women in 2014 Lok Sabha polls than men. Minority morcha secretary of UP BJP Nazia Alam will be heading this wing when she said that triple talaq pramukhs will be appointed for each of the 93 'organisational districts' and 6 regional units of the BJP.Alam said, "Each of these 93 organisational districts and six regional units will have a triple talaq pramukh and some of the victims are already working with us," she added. But political analysts say these exercise must not just become political events rather people must work on the ground to help these distressed women. The minority morcha secretary said the candidates would likely to be finalised after festive season followed by a survey in the month of December to ascertain the total number of triple talaq victims in the state.Oneindia
Govt suggests court not always final word amid Ram temple debate
New Delhi:A top government functionary reaffirmed the government’s commitment to a Ram temple at Ayodhya a week after the Supreme Court deferred the hearing of the Babri Masjid-Ram Janambhoomi case to January, provoking calls for a law or an ordinance from Hindu groups to facilitate the building of a temple at the disputed site.Just as the courts are authorised to rule on a matter of dispute, the government of the day can change the premise on which a judgment is based to render it null and void, senior govt functionary said on Monday, responding to questions on whether a law or an ordinance for construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya is possible before the next parliamentary election.The functionary, who didn’t want to be named, said he was making the remarks independent of the temple issue, and just to explain the limits to which the judiciary and the executive can go. However, he said, a Ram temple will indeed be built at Ayodhya. “A temple already exists there (at the disputed site in Ayodhya),” he said. “We only have to make it grand.”Talk of the government considering an ordinance or a bill to construct a temple in Ayodhya in the remainder of Parliament’s term has gained momentum after RSS – ideological mentor of the ruling BJP – demanded a law to build Ram temple and threatened a 1992-like campaign for its construction.HT
Pushing for ordinance on Ram temple incorrect, should wait for SC order: Athawale
Kolkata:Union Minister of State for Social Justice Ramdas Athawale on Monday said bringing ordinance for the construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya will not be right as the matter is sub judice.Acknowledging the demand of the Hindu community to build a Ram temple in his birthplace, the minister said the construction of the temple should be done after taking the local Muslim community into confidence."I do not think bringing ordinance on the temple will be the right decision. We sould wait for the Supreme Court's verdict. People should accept the apex court judgement," said Athawale, the president of RPI."The demand of the Hindu society to build a temple of Lord Ram in Ayodhya is legitimate and that should be accepted. But the Muslim community living there should also be taken into confidence. The government should look for a solution through meaningful discussion with the Muslims living there," he said."Any attempt to build the temple by taking law in one's own hand is not permissible," he said.IANS
Hindus most tolerant in world, talk of building mosque in Ayodhya will make them intolerant: Uma
New Delhi: Union Minister and BJP leader Uma Bharti said Hindus are the most tolerant people in the world but any attempt to construct a mosque on the periphery of Ram temple in Ayodhya could make them intolerant. Bharti event took a swipe at Congress head Rahul Gandhi and invited him to “atone for his sins” by laying the foundation of Ram Mandir. Bharti said the Congress president has always created hurdles in building temple in Ayodhya. "Hindus are the most tolerant community in the world. I will appeal to all politicians not to make them intolerant by drumming up the issue of a mosque on the outer periphery of the birthplace of Lord Ram in Ayodhya,"said Bharti.timesnownews
Muslims not against shrine, want both Mandir, Masjid:Karnataka  Congress Minister Zameer
Karnataka Minister BZ Zameer Ahmed Khan said Muslims were not against Ram temple at Ayodhya but pitched for construction of both Mandir and Masjid. Khan, who is from the Congress in the party’s coalition government with the Janata Dal-Secular, hit out at the BJP for raking up the issue for political reasons, ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.“Muslims are not against construction of Ram Mandir, we want Ram Mandir, also Babri Masjid,” Khan said. “What we want is peace. Muslims have never opposed Ram Mandir. We have two wishes- one side we want Masjid, one side we want Ram Mandir.” Khan’s statement comes days after another Congress MLA and former minister Roshan Baig asked, “If Ram Mandir is not constructed in India, will it be built in Pakistan” and said Muslims respected the sentiments of “Hindu brothers.”PTI
'Ram's Place Is Not in the Open': Ayodhya Priest Opposes Adityanath's Statue Plan
New Delhi: Adityanath government’s decision to install the tallest Ram statue in Ayodhya – details of which are supposed to be announced during Diwali celebrations in the town – has not gone down well with Mahant Satyendra Das, head priest at the makeshift temple at the disputed site. According to the HT, Das said, “Lord Ram’s place is in a temple and not in the open. The Lord’s statue in the open is not acceptable. Who is going to take care of the statue and perform daily puja of the deity?”The priest has been performing prayers at the Ram Lalla statue at the makeshift Ram Janmabhoomi temple in Ayodhya for over 25 years, the newspaper reported. Das claimed that Ram’s statue cannot be left to meet the same fate as that of politicians. “Lord Ram’s statue is not a political statue. It is not like any other statue of a politician installed across the country. You very well know the condition of the statues of politicians. No one takes care of them. Nobody wants Lord Ram’s statue to meet the same fate.”thewire
UP govt planning over 202-metre Ram statue structure in Ayodhya?
Lucknow: UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath's arrival in Ayodhya for the grand Deepotsav celebrations on Tuesday will be keenly watched following the build-up about announcement of some 'good news' amid growing clamour for Ram temple. Amid speculations of the chief minister announcing the installation of a mega statue of Lord Ram, possibly around 151 metre on a 51 metre pedestal in Ayodhya, the likelihood of the composite structure emerging taller than 182-metre 'Statue of Unity' in Gujarat is a topic of discussion among people.TOI
Build temple at disputed site: NCM chief Rizvi
New Delhi: National Commission for Minorities chief Ghayorul Hasan Rizvi on Monday came out strongly in favour of construction of a Ram temple at the contested site in Ayodhya, saying that a swift resolution of the dispute could help address growing communal tensions. Citing the “current atmosphere of growing tension” between Hindus and Muslims as a matter of grave concern, he said the commission will at a meeting on November 14 discuss the possibility of appealing to the Supreme Court for an early hearing in the title suit.Rizvi sees the construction of the temple as the only way out to not just end the long-pending dispute but also the fear and tension that the Muslim minority is living under. NCM in its full commission meeting next week is expected to dwell on the role and stand of the commission in the situation arising out of the issue. A resolution may also be formalised to reach out to the government and the minority community with the NCM’s viewpoint. “Govt should take necessary measures whether through talks with stakeholders or through an ordinance. Whatever be the way out, a resolution is critical to ease the tension,” Rizvi said. TOI
Left slams BJP on Ayodhya dispute
New Delhi:The calls for bringing in an ordinance or enacting a law to clear way for the construction of the Ram temple at the disputed site in Ayodhya and other statements made by BJP Ministers and leaders is an effort to subvert the judicial process, CPI (M) Polit Bureau said in a statement here.The party said that BJP and RSS are trying to recreate a 1992-kind of situation that led to the demolition of the Babri Masjid. 1994 Supreme Court verdict had described the Babri Masjid demolition as a “national shame”. and stated that, “What was demolished was not merely an ancient structure but the faith of the minorities in the sense of justice and fair play of (the) majority. It shook their faith in the rule of law and constitutional processes”.BJP had been maintaining that it shall abide by the apex court judgment. “Led by RSS, strident demands are being raised for the enactment of a new law for temple construction. This is tantamount to subversion of the judicial process. This is unconstitutional, hence, illegal,” CPI (M) said.thehindu
Jamaat rejects any move to bypass judiciary in Babri Masjid case
New Delhi:Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) has rejected any move to bypass judiciary in the Babri masjid case. “we see a lot of posturing and statements regarding bringing about a law in the Babri masjid case and calls for judiciary respecting popular will and giving only suitable judgments that are practicable. We feel that this is incorrect and disapprove any move to bypass the judiciary on the issue of Babri masjid” , said the President of Jamaat Maulana Syed Jalaluddin Umari. He said that if judiciary is undermined, it will open the door to many excesses and the writ of law in the country will be severely compromised. Is it not noble of the Muslim community to commit itself to abide by the court judgment on the issue of Babri masjid while the other contenders openly challenge the system by saying that they will accept the court judgment only if it goes in their favor? The world will judge as to whom are more law abiding’’.Earlier while briefing the media, Secretary General of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, Muhammad Salim Engineer talked about various issues regarding the nation. He expressed concern over recent developments in the nation’s top investigative agency and also reports regarding the rift between the government and the RBI. The JIH Secretary General said: “Jamaat feels that the credibility of the CBI has been compromised with its top officers openly exchanging accusations of corruption.The way in which the government handled the issue has exposed the government’s administrative weakness and disregard of existing norms and consultation process.The blunt criticism by the RBI Deputy Governor in which he warned the government of the disastrous consequences of political interference, shows that all is not well between the country’s central bank and the government. Although the legislature is directly elected by the people, it cannot claim to be the exclusive vanguard of democracy demanding subservience by all other institutions. Jamaat-e-Islami Hind would like to remind the government that it is its bounden duty to abide by the norms and spirit of our Constitution and act in a democratic manner to ensure harmony and balance between the state and its institutions’’. On the issue of Assam NRC he said: ‘’Jamaat-e-Islami Hind welcomes the judgment of the Supreme Court of India which has extended the deadline for filing claims and objections of people whose names were not included in the final draft of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) to December 15 and also allowed claimants to rely on five additional documents, beside the 10 permitted earlier. Jamaat-e-Islami Hind along with likeminded organizations have appointed 250 Volunteers in 11 districts of Assam which have been most impacted by the NRC process’’. Jamaat welcomed the judgment of the Delhi High Court regarding the Hashimpura massacre and also voiced concern over growing pollution in Delhi and major cities of India.
Govt. Intervention In Key Institutions Like RBI, CBI Not Good For Strong Democracy: Jamaat
Dating app and ‘love jihad’: In rape case, Delhi court grapples with many questions: indianexpress
New Delhi :A Delhi court has granted bail to a man who has been accused of raping a woman on the pretext of marriage and, according to FIR, carrying out “love jihad”. Granting bail to the accused, Additional Sessions Judge Santosh Snehi Mann said: “Whether sexual intercourse between the complainant and the accused was consensual or on the pretext of marriage is the subject matter of trial. Investigation is complete and the applicant is not required for the purpose of any investigation. He is in custody for the past 2 months, and there is nothing on record to suggest that if released on bail, he would hamper trial or tamper (with) evidence.” The complainant’s lawyer had earlier informed the court that the accused had allegedly done “something similar” with many other women, who did not want to pursue the case legally.Citing FIR, the complainant’s counsel, Virender Tarun, alleged in court: “He had cheated the complainant — he promised to marry her and then established physical relations. He even tried to extort money… The complainant then found that he had done the same with other women in different cities with the same modus operandi. It is a case of love jihad.”Lawyer Tarun said the accused, who hails from Kashmir, had created a fake identity while interacting with the woman, whom he met on a dating app.“Initially, he said that he is a businessman. Later we found out he was a constable. His identity needs to be verified,” he said.Manu Sharma, the counsel for the accused, then read out certain chats between the complainant and the accused and alleged: “The complainant (woman) had also given a fake identity.”indianexpress
AAP Claims 10 lakh Names Deleted from Delhi Voters’ List, Blames BJP For It
New Delhi:AAP, that is ruling Delhi for about four years, has blamed the BJP for alleged deletion of lakhs of names from the voters’ list.Addressing a press conference here on Saturday, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia claimed that “10.5 lakh names have been deleted from voters’ list.”“Around 15,000 names have been deleted from each Assembly constituency, thus it makes a total of 10.5 lakh votes. On what ground has the Election Commission deleted these names? After investigation, it was found that these voters have not shifted to any other place but are staying at the same place,” said Sisodia.Targeting BJP for this, he said: “Election Commission should tell about the number of voters whose names are being deleted. Fearing for defeat, the BJP is getting these names deleted. In democracy, right to vote is itself being attacked. The names deleted must be added to the list.”caravandaily
AAP seeks Manoj Tiwari's arrest for 'rioting' and 'posing threat' to Kejriwal's security at Bridge's inauguration
New Delhi: AAP has demanded the arrest of Delhi BJP president Manoj Tiwari for "rioting" and "posing a threat" to the security of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.Tiwari and his supporters allegedly got into a scuffle with AAP members and police at the inaugural event of the newly-built Signature Bridge in Delhi on Sunday.BJP leader had gone to the event to stage a protest for allegedly not being invited to the inauguration despite being Member of Parliament from the area.AAP's East Delhi Lok Sabha seat in-charge Atishi Marlena alleged Tiwari had gone to the venue for "rioting". Senior AAP leader Dilip Pandey said a party worker, who was injured in Sunday's incident, has filed a police complaint.PTI
Muslims Feel Ignored By Both Congress and BJP in Madhya Pradesh Polls
Bhopal;Muslims in MP had already lost hope of getting any tickets to contest the Assembly elections on behalf of the BJP. However, with the approaching elections, they were taken by surprise when even Congress (INC) also refrained from pitching Muslim candidates. action many believe is an aftereffect of “Communal polarisation by BJP” which has compelled the Congress to play the “soft Hindutva card”. Miffed with both the leading political parties, the community now feels that they are being taken for granted by the grand old party, as they out of compulsion would be voting for Congress, by default. Masood Ahmed Khan, State secretary, Coordination Committee of Indian Muslims and social Activist Haji Haroon expressed their discomfort with the political stand of the Congress. They collectively said, “Rahul Gandhi is also playing the soft Hindutva politics.This is due to the communal polarization created by the state’s BJP government headed by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan. Sadly enough, no other political party is in a strong position to take on BJP in the state.”caravandaily
Activists unhappy with SC’s Aadhaar Act order on social benefits
New Delhi:About 170 members of various campaigns working with vulnerable groups on Monday expressed disappointment with the Supreme Court’s Sept.20 order of upholding parts of the Aadhaar Act allowing the state to make the use of Aadhaar and biometric authentication mandatory for citizens to receive social benefits.“We were hoping and expecting that the SC would decisively prohibit the mandatory use of Aadhaar for social benefits.A large body of evidence, provided to the court, shows that mandatory use of Aadhaar and biometrics for this purpose is leading to large-scale exclusion, new forms of corruption, and extra delays and hardship for people in accessing their entitlement,” said a statement signed by 173 members of various human rights groups.“We are therefore extremely disappointed that the court has upheld the constitutionality of section 7 of Aadhaar Act,” it said. Statement was issued by groups including various campaigns in the fields of education, health, food, employment and land rights.The statement described the mandatory use of Aadhaar as an example of how the poor are unable to have their voice heard in the policy framework.“This imposition has led to extreme distress and even death in many cases.”IANS
Retired IAS, IFS Officers Want Action Against Amit Shah for 'Unconstitutional' Sabarimala Speech
New Delhi: Close to 50 retired Indian Administrative Service and Indian Foreign Service officers have written to Election Commission, Supreme Court, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Ram Nath Kovind asking that action be taken against BJP chief Amit Shah for his “unconstitutional” speech in Kannur, Kerala.On October 27, Shah extended the BJP’s support to those who had been protesting women’s entry into the Sabarimala temple despite Supreme Court saying that they should be allowed in. “We [the BJP] will uproot this government if it continues arresting people who protested the SC verdict [on women’s entry into the Sabarimala],” Shah said. Shah also asked courts to issue “practical instructions to govts”.In their statement, IAS and IFS officers have said that Shah’s speech made for “scary reading”and amounts to “gross constitutional misconduct”.They have asked EC, SC,PM and president to take cognisance of the matter and act.thewire
Assault in Sharda University led our son to join militancy:family of Srinagar youth: TCN
Srinagar: The family members of a Srinagar youth who is reported to have joined militant ranks on Saturday blamed students of Sharda University who assaulted him in varsity campus on Oct.4 for their son’s actions. Ahtesham Bilal Sofi (19),a resident of downtown in Srinagar, was a first-year graduate student at Sharda University in Greater Noida, UP.He was beaten up on Oct.4 in a case of “mistaken identity” and the video of Ahtesham being assaulted was shared widely on social media. He went missing on Oct. 28 and on Friday his gun-wielding picture along with an audio of “joining ISJK,” an outfit influenced by ISIS ideology went viral on social media.“I strongly believe that he took this extreme step because he was thrashed by some students in the university. He was injured badly when I went to see him in University,”says Bilal Ahmad Sofi,father of Ahtesham. Bilal says he went to university from Srinagar on the same day and he spoke to higher authorities of the university regarding the issue.“I even met to a senior official from the concerned police station, who asked if I wanted to file an FIR against the students who had thrashed my son. I refused, to do so because I thought the issue would be resolved by the University,” he adds. Bilal stayed with his son for 7 days and during the time he was approached by the accused students for an apology.
Nowher: From a vegetable hawker to running Ponzi scheme worth hundreds of crores: timesnow
Mumbai: Nowhera Shaikh, 45-year-old Heera Group Managing Director, who was arrested by Mumbai Police's Economic Offences Wing (EOW) last month for duping investors of close to Rs 500 crore as a burqa-clad single mother ran a multi-state Ponzi scheme till the time she was finally apprehended.Years ago, anyone who knew her would have never known that assisting her mother as a vegetable hawker in Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh back then would go on to own 17 companies with more than 2 lakh investors across South and Western India and have a combined turnover of more than Rs 1,000 crore. Over the years, as per a TOI report, she gained a degree in business management, established an all-girls madrassa and constituted a party to contest elections in the state of Karnataka.She spread her outreach over a period of seven years by the means of a Ponzi scheme that offered 36-42% returns and drew an increasing number of investors. Shaikh, by May 2018, started defaulting on payments that eventually led to funding mismanagement, chaos and subsequent police complaints and thus began her downfall.As of this date, she remains in Mumbai police's custody after she was nabbed in Hyderabad under allegations of deceit in connection with the over Rs 500 crore cheating case. A complaint by an investor named Shane Elahi led to her arrest. Most of her investors were from the Muslim community to whom she had promised a halal business, free of any interest.timesnownews
Saudis tampered with CCTV cameras after Khashoggi murder: report
Turkish media have reported that staff at Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul tried to dismantle security cameras to help cover up the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.The pro-government Sabah newspaper reported on Tuesday that the Saudis tried to rip out the camera inside the consulate on Oct. 2, the day Khashoggi was murdered.They also tried to tamper with cameras at the police security booth outside the building.Khashoggi, a former Washington Post columnist and critic of the powerful Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, also known as MBS, was killed in the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul on Oct.2. His body remains missing.According to the report, on Oct.6, at 1am local time, a consulate member staff went into the police security post outside the Saudi consulate to access the video system.Sabah reported that the staff member put in a digital lock code into the system, which did not dismantle any cameras, rather the code was to prevent access to any videos showing movement at the entrance, including Khashoggi's arrival at the consulate. Al Jazeera's Andrew Simmons reporting from Istanbul said that their attempt was, in any case, irrelevant because the police had already deciphered the coding and accessed the system, retrieving a copy of the video well before the attempted tampering."All of this demonstrates, according to Turkish officials, in terms of the ... whole set of procedures, that there was an effort by the Saudi Arabian consulate to once again tamper with evidence," Simmons said.aljazeera
In a bid to crush rivals, Saudi Prince jailed rivals at Ritz-Carlton: The Washington Post
Riyadh: Somewhere in this kingdom, Prince Turki bin Abdullah is locked away.Turki, 47, was once a golden scion of Saudi Arabia's gilded royal family, a prominent son of former King Abdullah and a fighter pilot with advanced degrees who trained in the US and Britain. He was the powerful governor of Riyadh province, then chief executive of the multibillion-dollar King Abdullah Foundation, which funds charitable work around the world.He is now among an unknown number of superwealthy Saudis who remain detained a full year after Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman startled his country by turning Riyadh's posh Ritz-Carlton hotel into a 5-star jail for some of the nation's most prominent citizens in what he called an anti-corruption sweep. Prince Turki, who officials have reportedly accused of graft related to construction of the Riyadh subway, remains detained without any formal charges. His chief of staff, Gen. Ali al-Qahtani, was also arrested and died in detention under circumstances that have never been fully explained.Early this year, the Saudi attorney general said 56 men remained locked up, some the subject of criminal investigations, with more than $106 billion in cash, real estate, businesses, securities and other assets recovered in the Ritz operation.Mohammed said in interview last month with Bloomberg only eight men were still detained. He offered no other details, except to say, "They're with their lawyers and facing the system that we have in Saudi Arabia."But other people familiar with the detentions said the number is much higher, with 45 Ritz detainees still locked up.One of those may have won his freedom Friday when Saudi authorities released Prince Khaled bin Talal,56, a cousin of Mohammed and Prince Turki. Khaled is a businessman and noted religious conservative who reportedly opposed the crown prince's decision to strip power from the country's notorious religious police.
Netanyahu advances death penalty bill for Palestinians
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has approved legislation which would make it easier for courts to hand death sentences to Palestinians who have killed Israelis or soldiers.While Israel has a law permitting the death penalty, no executions have been carried out since the 1962.Under the current law, the death penalty may only be imposed by unanimous decision from a panel of three judges. A bill proposed by Defence Minister Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beytenu party, which Netanyahu backed yesterday, would remove this requirement, allowing both civilian and military courts to execute Palestinians with a majority decision.The bill is expected to be brought up at the Constitution, Law and Justice Committee in the next few days to prepare the legislation for its first reading in the Knesset.middleeastmonitor
Support for Israel 'continues to drop' among US liberals, youth
In Feb.2017, Israeli Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked expressed concern about "decreasing support for Israel in Democratic party", telling her Jewish American audience that the problem was "a strategic issue" for Israel."I couldn't sleep after I saw a poll 2 weeks ago", she added. A new US poll on the same topic will not help Shaked rest easy. Results indicate that key trends identified in recent years show no signs of slowing; Israel's reputation is deteriorating among demographics such as Democrats, younger voters,African Americans and Hispanic Americans. The fact that US public's view towards Israel remains positive overall masks an increasingly partisan divide; Economist/YouGov poll found that only 25%of Democrat-voters consider Israel an "ally" of the US, compared with 57% of Republicans.As Israeli newspaper Haaretz observed, the poll "shows that support for Israel is directly co-related to gender, age, economic status and political outlook. It is strongest among older, well-to-do, conservative white men and weakest among young, liberal, minorities and women".aljazeera
China security spending surges in Xinjiang despite camp denials
China's spending on security-related construction in Xinjiang jumped in 2017 even as funds put towards vocational training declined amid claims the country is holding as many as one million ethnic Uighur in internment camps.An analysis of official government spending by the Jamestown Foundation, a US think-tank, found that security-related spending rose nearly $2.9bn last year. Meanwhile, spending on vocational training declined by seven percent."Xinjiang's budget figures do not reflect increased spending on vocational education in [Xinjiang] as the region ramped up camp construction," said Adrian Zenz, a researcher at the European School of Culture and Theology in Korntal, Germany, who wrote the report."Nor do they reflect an increase in criminal cases handled by courts and prosecutors. Rather, they reflect patterns of spending consistent with the construction and operation of highly secure political re-education camps designed to imprison hundreds of thousands of Uighurs with minimal due process."aljazeera
Over 200 mass graves discovered in Iraq: UN report
More than 200 graves containing the corpses of thousands of victims have been discovered in areas formerly controlled by the ISIL, a UN report said.The report by UN Human Rights Office and the UN Assistance Mission documented the existence of 202 mass grave sites in the northern and western Iraqi governorates of Nineveh, Kirkuk, Salah al-Din and Anbar.The dead include women, children, the elderly and disabled, as well as members of Iraq's armed forces and police, the report said.These deaths occurred in what the United Nations has called a systematic and widespread campaign of violence, "which may amount to war crimes, crimes against hunanity and genocide".It may be difficult to specify the exact number of people in the graves, with the smallest site in west Mosul believed to contain eight bodies while the biggest in the Khasfa sinkhole south of Mosul is believed to contain thousands of corpses.The UN has said previously that almost 33,000 civilians were killed by the group in Iraq, with more than 55,000 injured.aljazeera
India, China Among 8 Countries Exempt From US Sanctions On Iran Oil
US will exempt China, India and Japan from oil sanctions on Iran, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday, while vowing to be "relentless" in pressuring Tehran. Hours after sweeping sanctions were reimposed following US withdrawal from a denuclearization deal, Pompeo said eight countries would be at least temporarily exempt from the ban on buying Iranian oil due to special circumstances or so as not to disrupt energy markets.The countries with the waivers will be China, India, Italy, Greece, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Turkey, Pompeo said."Our objective is to starve the Iranian regime of the funds it uses to fund violent activity throughout the Middle East and around the world. Our ultimate goal is to encourage them to abandon their revolutionary course," Pompeo told reporters. A notable omission was Iraq. Had Iraq been granted a waiver, Iran might have been able to skirt sanctions by mixing its crude with its neighbor's output, analysts say. President Donald Trump withdrew in May from the deal that his predecessor Barack Obama had reached with Iran, calling it a failure because it addressed only the clerical regime's nuclear program.Pompeo reiterated demands for Iran to make a "180-degree turn" from its regional policies rooted in the 1979 Islamic revolution, such as support for the Lebanese militia Hezbollah."We hope a new agreement with Iran is possible, but until Iran makes changes in the 12 ways I listed in May, we will be relentless in exerting pressure on the regime," Pompeo said. Pompeo said the eight countries exempted have "already demonstrated reduction of Iranian crude over the past six months and, indeed, two of those eight have already completely ended imports of Iranian crude and will not resume as long as the sanctions remain in place."AFP
Turkey warns US its Iran sanctions are 'dangerous'
Turkey has warned Washington against its new sanctions on Iran, saying isolating the Islamic Republic is "dangerous", Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Tuesday. Washington this week imposed a second set of sanctions on Iran that aim to isolate the country's banking sector and slash its oil exports. 8 countries including Turkey have received a US waiver to continue importing Iranian oil."While we were asking (for) an exemption from the United States, we have also been very frank with them that cornering Iran is not wise. Isolating Iran is dangerous and punishing the Iranian people is not fair," he said at a press conference during a trip to Japan."Turkey is against sanctions, we don't believe any results can be achieved through the sanctions," he added."I think instead of sanctions, meaningful dialogue and engagement is much more useful."aljazeera
Pak Jamaat warns countrywide protest campaign amid Aasiya Bibi verdict
Karachi: Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan (JI) President Senator Sirajul Haq has warned that his party would launch a countrywide protest campaign against the blasphemers of the Holy Prophet.He said his party would launch a countrywide “Hurmaat-e-Rasool Tehreek” from Karachi to Khyber to Chitral. He said, “We would sacrifice the last drop of our blood for the sanctity of ‘Namoos-e-Risalat’”. He charged that the verdict on the Aasiya Bibi case has received praise from the ‘West and Jews’ but saddened the Ummah.He asked from the PTI government to tell the people of Pakistan if Aasiya Bibi was inside the country or sent abroad. pakistantoday
Hashimpura verdict highlights the bias within police against religious minorities:Vrinda Grover
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Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 5:29 PM)


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