20 January 2019

20 Jan.ND: Detained Rohingya refugees remain stranded between India-Bangladesh border/ MHA tweaks travel norms: Indians over 65, under 15 can use Aadhaar to visit Nepal, Bhutan/ Govt to set up townships for rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits in J&K: BJP

NEWS DIGEST, Afternoon 
20 Jan. 2019: 13 Jamadiul-I 1440: Vol:11, No:106
 Detained Rohingya refugees remain stranded between India-Bangladesh border
Agartala: 2 days after Bangladesh’s border security forces detained at least 31 Rohingya refugees, there has been no headway in the matter as the refugees remain stranded along the zero line, between international borders of India and Bangladesh, on Tripura’s frontier. Border Guards Bangladesh (BGB) has alleged that BSF has been pushing the Rohingyas into the Bangladeshi territory and that the group stranded between the borders has come from India. BSF disputed these claims saying there is no tell-tale sign of breach of the fence on the Indian side and the Rohingyas could not have gone from India. BSF has also offered BGB to join a survey on the Indian side to identify any sign of a breach.On Sunday a Battalion Commander level meeting was held along the zero line at 11 am. “BGB battalion commander was of the same view that Rohingyas came from Indian side. We have denied their allegations and said there is no tell-tale sign of breach of fence on Indian side,” BSF DIG Belwa said. He added that the Rohingyas might have come from the other side (Bangladesh).Meanwhile, BSF has provided food, water and other basic amenities from their own resources to Rohingyas on humanitarian grounds.“We have instructed our company commander to conduct a preliminary questioning so that we can know their age, name, gender composition and profile. They have been sitting in the open for the last two days. We provided them with food, water and other basic needs from our own resources last night,” BSF official informed.BSF DIG CL Belwa said Sunday that a BGB commanding officer made a telephone call to a BSF official on Jan.18 and informed that they had detained 31 Rohingya Muslims near the International Border.“BGB official insisted that BSF take over the Rohingyas inside Indo-Bangladesh Border (IBB) Fencing and alleged that BSF has been pushing Rohingyas into Bangladesh Territory. However, we have strictly denied allegation,” the official said.He added that BSF offered BGB officials to come and survey the Indian side to see if there is any breach of barbed wire fence. However, Bangladesh authorities declined and stuck to their demand that the BSF accept Rohingyas into Indian territory.indianexpress
MHA tweaks travel norms: Indians over 65, under 15 can use Aadhaar to visit Nepal, Bhutan
New Delhi:Aadhaar cards are now valid travel documents for Indians under 15 and over 65 travelling to Nepal and Bhutan, according to a Home Ministry communique. Indians other than those in 2 age brackets will not be able to use Aadhaar to travel to the two neighbouring countries, for which no visas are needed, clarified the communique issued recently.Indian citizens going to Nepal and Bhutan don’t need a visa if they have a valid passport, a photo identity card issued by the Govt  of India or an election ID card issued by the Election Commission, it added.Earlier, persons over 65 and under 15 could show their PAN card, driving licence, Central Govt  Health Service (CGHS) card or ration card, but not the Aadhaar, to prove their identity and visit the two countries.Aadhaar card has now been added to the list, explained a senior Home Ministry official.“Now, persons in the age group of over 65 years and below 15 years have been allowed to use Aadhaar as a valid travel document,” the official told PTI.PTI
21 Bangladeshi nationals, including one Hindu, repatriated from Assam
Guwahati:21 Bangladeshi nationals lodged in a detention centre in Assam were repatriated on Saturday, Assam police said. The group included one Hindu. According to officials, the group comprising 19 males and two females were sent back through the Sutarkandi immigration check point in Karimganj district of Barak Valley after the Bangladesh Govt sent their travel permits.21 Bangladeshi nationals were lodged in Silchar Central Jail in Cachar district of Barak Valley. All of them were convicted by local courts in Cachar and Karimganj and had served their sentences. Litun Kanti Das, only Hindu in the group, was convicted in 2017, according to Govt  records available with HT. Bhaskar Jyoti Mahanta, additional director general of police (border), said, “They completed their sentences and have been sent back today after Bangladesh verified their details and sent travel documents.”According to Mahanta, in 2018, as many as 65 persons were repatriated from Assam. These included mostly Bangladeshi nationals and Rohingyas who were sent to Myanmar.HT
Govt to set up townships for rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits in J&K: BJP GS Madhav
Jammu: BJP general secretary Ram Madhav on Sunday said the Govt  had decided to set up separate townships for rehabilitation of migrant Kashmiri Pandits in the Valley.When asked whether BJP had any roadmap for rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits in the Valley in 2019, Madhav said, “When we formed the govt in the state, we had a roadmap for them.We had tried to set up townships for Kashmiri Pandits at five or 6 places in the Valley and it goes to the credit of Mufti Sayeed Govt  that those places were also identified.”He said further progress in the matter was derailed mainly because of the prevailing security situation in the Valley. “Even today, it does not seem that they will be able to live in peace there,”Madhav said. “However, we are committed to safeguard their political rights and other rights,’’ he said, adding that the next step would be taken after discussions with the Kashmiri Pandit leadership.In April 2015, separatists held protests in the Valley against the move by Centre and state Govt  to set up separate townships for Pandits.Then CM Sayeed had denied any such plans. Centre had also denied any proposal to create separate zones exclusively for Pandits.indianexpress
Kashmiri Pandits demand creation of a separate township within Kashmir for them
Some members of Kashmiri Pandit community gathered at the Raj Ghat here yesterday to mark 29th anniversary of their forced exile from Kashmir and demanded creation of a separate township in the valley for them. They took an oath to return to Kashmir Valley and appealed to the Govt  to fulfil its duty by facilitating their return. They commemorated Kashmiri Pandit Exodus Day, organisers said."Many Kashmiri Pandits were killed, raped and tortured before and after 19 Jan, 1990 in a series of targeted killings of minority Pandits," it said. Remembering the night, Mona Razdan, one of the displaced Kashmiri Pandits, said that the night was "possibly the longest night of our lives"."Mobs from all over valley had occupied every single road in Kashmir. They shouted slogans against Pandits asking us to either join them or leave the valley," she said. Regretting the current state of exiled Kashmiri Pandit community, Vivek Raina, a young student, said, "More than 50,000 of our people perished in the inhabitable camps. They fell to snake and scorpion bites. There still is a refugee camp in Jammu that harbours more than 25,000 people and is no better than a concentration camp.PTI
Centre mulls simultaneous Lok Sabha and J-K polls
New Delhi:Centre is gearing up to hold the Jammu and Kashmir assembly polls along with the general elections slated for April-May, officials familiar with the development said.The state has been under President’s Rule from mid-Dec.after 6 months of Governor’s Rule, which was imposed after BJP withdrew from PDP-led coalition Govt  headed by Mehbooba Mufti in June last year.“The only question that is left to be decided is whether to hold J&K assembly polls coinciding with the first phase or the last phase of the Lok Sabha polls. This will depend on the availability of additional security forces, mainly from paramilitaries, for the state and their mobilisation schedule. As of now, the idea is hold it with the first phase of Lok Sabha polls,” said a govt official on the condition of anonymity.The official added that additional forces could move into the state early and, after the completion of the first phase of voting, be sent to other states depending on the poll schedule. “But no final decision has been taken as of now,” said official.HT
PDP expels senior leader Bukhari for ‘leading dissent’
Srinagar: Mehbooba Mufti-led PDP has expelled senior party leader Altaf Bukhari, alleging that he “inspired and led dissent in the party at its most crucial stage”, which resulted in “serious damage to our efforts at implementing the agenda of Alliance of our coalition govt”. Bukhari, who served as finance minister in the state before the PDP-BJP coalition Govt  fell in June 2018, represents the Amira Kadal constituency in Srinagar and has also served as education minister in the Mufti cabinet.Accusing him of anti-party activities, PDP said in a statement that the party has been watching his activities with concern for quite some time, and, “Ever since the passing away of our founder Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, he has been perusing his personal political ambition at the cost of the party and state interest. While the party leadership was engaged in negotiations with its partner and the GOI insisting on implementing some agreed points before forming the new Govt , the dissension weakened its bargaining position, forcing subsequent events against its will.”The party also said, “In spite of this obvious backstabbing and subversion of people’s interest, the party leadership believed in subsequent explanations and assurances of Bukhari and reposed complete trust in him by re-inducting him in cabinet.”indianexpress
Pakistan should stop meddling in Kashmir, it is and will always be an integral part of India: Owaisi
Asking Pakistan to stop meddling in Kashmir affairs, AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi Saturday said the valley was and will always be an integral part of India, even as he stressed the need to have a consistent policy for the region.Hyderabad MP said whether it was the Congress or BJP at the Centre, they have "no policy, no vision" to bring back normalcy in the Kashmir Valley."I feel that there has to be a consistent policy on Kashmir which unfortunately is lacking," he said.AIMIM leader was replying to a question during a panel discussion organised at the Telangana Jagruthi International Youth Leadership Conference which began here Saturday. Quoting a report, Owaisi accused the BJP-led central Govt  of not doing anything for Kashmiri Pandits.He said he has not seen so many lives being destroyed with pellet guns in the last eight years.Owaisi said instead of having a policy for the region, the Govt  was now aiming to have less lethal weapons which show where its priority lies."Kashmir problem cannot be treated in a James Bond or a Rambo style... Someone will have to show a statesman-like approach. There is alienation and things have to be done in a proper way," he said.TOI
Will back Congress if Ram temple in manifesto, says VHP working president; backtracks later
New Delhi:Sending a message to the Govt  that it’s running out of patience over the Ayodhya issue, VHP working president Alok Kumar has reportedly said that if the Congress included Ram temple construction in its manifesto, the Hindutva outfit would think of backing the party in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.“Congress has closed all its doors for us, but if they open their doors and include the Ram Mandir in their manifesto, we may think of supporting the party,” IANS quoted Kumar as saying.However, Kumar downplayed his remarks on Sunday, saying his statement made at Prayagraj was overstretched. “This is nothing but an overstretching of my statement. Neither are we considering to support the Congress nor will we do so in future,” IANS quoted Kumar as saying.Kumar, instead, said the VHP wanted a “broad political consensus” on the Ram temple issue. “We want all political parties to support this issue. Whoever will support it, we will welcome. But it does not mean that the VHP will support any political party in the election,” he said. VHP has been pressing the Narendra Modi Govt  to bring in a legislation to build the Ram temple in Ayodhya as the Supreme Court was dragging the issue. The Hindutva outfit has been holding Dharma Sabhas to keep up the pressure on the BJP Govt  over Ram Temple.However, in an interview this month, PM Narendra Modi has already made it clear that Govt  would make “all efforts” on the Ram temple issue once the judicial process was over.In Prayagraj, Kumar said on Saturday that Congress must remove restrictions on ‘swamyasewaks‘ joining the party. “One doesn’t become a Brahmin by just wearing janeau,” Kumar said in a reference to Rahul Gandhi.indianexpress
Vigilante violence in north India is choking cattle trade in West Bengal’s weekly markets
It is Friday afternoon and Abdul Rahaman is getting ready for the weekly cattle market that his family has conducted for 135 years.45-year-old oversees the preparation from a tiny office room on the edge of a 42 acre field in Illambazar, Birbhum district. A bright 2019 calendar on the wall contrasts the peeling paint in the office room, which also has two mobile phones on an old table. The clean-shaven and stocky Rahaman sits on a rickety chair before explaining how his business works. Farmers and traders from W. Bengal and neighbouring states flock to the field every Saturday to buy or sell cattle. Rahaman’s family earns a commission of Rs 20-100 from each buyer. Around Rs 20,000 comes in a week these days, he says, adding that profits have been 40-50% lower since 2016. “Even though the cattle trade rules in Bengal are liberal, the mood across north India has severely hit the movement of cattle in this region,” he says, referring to the violent action of vigilante cow protection groups that have struck terror in the hearts of cattle traders.Rural families usually rear cows for years but sell them off when a family exigency demands additional funds. In some cases, old animals that cannot work in fields are also brought here, explains Rahaman. People buy cows for different reasons, including to plough fields,for milk or for slaughterhouses. A senior official at the Birbhum Zilla Regulated Market Committee in Bolpur, in charge of 11 such markets in the district, says the administration has been alert and no violence related to cattle movement has been reported. Nevertheless, weekly cattle markets have not been doing brisk business since 2017, when Adityanath Govt  took charge in UP, he says.“These haats are local weekly markets where people have an opportunity to buy and sell animals for various purposes. While beef is not sold in any markets here, its consumption is not illegal and Muslim families procure animals for domestic consumption.”At the Illambazar haat, three men huddle together in a makeshift shelter to keep the cold away. They are cattle traders from Bihar who arrived the previous evening with 15 heads of livestock.“We have been cattle traders for many decades,” says one.“There are many farmers in neighbouring states who want to sell their cattle because they need money.” But the risk of being attacked by cow vigilantes stops them from saying more. The three refuse to give their names and request that their photos not be taken. “We come to the market at least twice a month to sell cattle,” says one. Revealing their identities could turn out to be fatal for them. Farmers are hit when they cannot sell their cattle freely.“Distress sales are common now,” says Rahaman. The previous month, he says, he helped a farmer from UP sell his cow for a fair deal. Farmer was desperate for cash to conduct his daughter’s wedding. Economic times
Maharashtra drought: Year’s first cattle camp already home to over 7,000 animals
Mhaswad (maharashtra):Their jersey cows and Murrah buffaloes now their lifeline in a worsening drought, 1,400 families from villages in Satara’s Maan taluka have moved with their animals to a cattle camp near Mhaswad, unable to provide adequate water and fodder for the milch animals in their illages. The first cattle camp of the 2018-2019 drought opened unusually early on Jan.1, long before the advent of the summer, and is already home to over 7,000 animals who will live at the camp until the monsoon arrives.“I celebrated Sankranti right here, my animals are as important as the rest of the family,” says Ranjana Virkar of Virkarwadi.5 km away. In her sixties, Ranjana spends day and night at the camp, walking back home once every week to fetch supplies. Giving her company are other women from Virkarwadi, and her husband or a son and an infant granddaughter. With no crop on their two acres for the past two years, her younger son has migrated to Surat, where he’s employed as a helper in a diamond polishing unit. Virkarwadi is among a dozen villages in Maan where water scarcity is currently severe.Late in 2018, Maharashtra Govt declared 112 talukas severely drought hit, and thousands of villages are already being served by water tankers. Chetna Gala Sinha, founder and chairperson of Mann Deshi Foundation that is running the cattle camp with a sponsorship from Bajaj and two Mumbai-based social organisations, says they decided to open the camp early to give livestock owners a viable alternative to selling animals in times of acute water stress.“Dairy industry is a critical source of livelihood in this region, and it has become more so in the last few years. Because even when milk prices are low, farmers get a sustained cash flow. It’s less uncertain than farming,” says Sinha. “We announced the camp right after Diwali, to prevent owners from selling their animals at the last animal yatra.”Since the camp opened on Jan.1, numbers have grown rapidly, standing at 7,349 animals on Jan.16. 1,485 families come from 58 villages in Maan and around. Organis$ers expect the numbers to grow three-fold in the coming months. The state Govt is expected to launch its own fodder camps and other drought mitigation measures next month.indianexpress
Yogi Govt  now allows use of CSR funds to provide facilities for abandoned cows in UP
https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/yogi-Govt -now-allows-use-of-csr-funds-to-provide-facilities-for-abandoned-cows-in-up/story-v1BmNbaYet4rbtKEDP1AZO.html
Lucknow:In its latest move for cow protection, the Yogi Adityanath Govt  in Uttar Pradesh has allowed corporate houses to use corporate social responsibility (CSR) funds to provide facilities for abandoned cows on the land reserved for grazing grounds in rural areas.The step comes after the Govt  decided to impose a cow welfare cess and a special fee on beer and Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) to fund construction of cow shelters in the state.Provisions of UP Revenue Code 2006 do not allow transfer of grazing ground to any NGO for management. That is why the state Govt  has issued a Govt  order, specifying how the ‘gram sabhas’ could get cooperation from corporate houses and the NGOs to provide facilities for abandoned cows on land reserved for grazing ground in villages.In the Govt  order sent to all the district magistrates on Friday, principal secretary, revenue, Suresh Chandra said, “Any construction of boundary wall on the grazing ground land cannot be permitted as per rules. Yet, there will be no objection to installation of tube well and construction of ‘charhi’ (feeding point) and plantation of saplings of species of trees used for fodder by the ‘gram sabha’ on such land. There will also be no objection to getting cooperation from the corporate houses through CSR and NGOs through a contract on proposal from ‘gram sabha’.”HT
PM Modi’s pre-election handouts to cost billions, breach fiscal targets: Report
New Delhi:A series of vote-catching measures planned by PM  Narendra Modi as he braces for a difficult general election may cost more than 1 trillion rupees ($14 billion), 2 sources with direct knowledge of the matter said.Much of the cost of the extra spending or revenue losses would have to be borne by the govt that will take charge after the election due by May. The spending is also likely to delay plans to reduce Govt’s budget deficit, a key indicator of the nation’s economic health.Modi’s BJP lost three major state elections at the end of last year, largely due to anger in rural India in the face of low crop prices and rising costs. Modi remains the front-runner for the general election, according to opinion polls, but his once-invincible image has been dealt a heavy blow. Govt is expected to unveil handouts mostly aimed at farmers in an interim budget to be presented on Feb.1, said the sources, both Govt  officials. While no final decisions have been taken, the measures could include direct transfers of funds into farmers’ bank accounts and interest-free loans for them.The giveaways will come on top of tax sops, job reservations and policies favouring local businesses that have already been made public. The new measures have to be announced before election dates are finalised by Election Commission, possibly in March or April, after which there will be curbs on policies that could influence voting. A spokesman for the Ministry of Finance did not respond to an e-mail seeking comment.Reuters
Northeast Burning Because of Citizenship Amendment Bill: Lalduhawma
Kolkata:Criticising Citizenship Amendment Bill, Zoram Nationalist Party leader Lalduhawma on Saturday said the entire Northeast was "burning" because of its after effects and appealed to all parties in the region to sever links with the BJP."If that Bill is enacted..., India will no longer be the place that it used to be... so we want a secular Govt  at the Centre, so that this Bill is withdrawn or exemption must be given to the Northeast," he said at the opposition rally at the Brigade Parade Ground here.Lalduhawma is Leader of Opposition in the Mizoram Assembly."I appeal to all regional parties from Northeast to break away from all kinds of connections with BJP and join this great movement.Let us all unite together in the fight against communalism.IANS
FIR against Assam BJP Minister for Anti-Muslim Remarks
Guwahati:An FIR has been lodged against state minister and BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma for allegedly making communal remarks against Muslims during a TV show. Finance, Health and Education Minister Dr Sarma, during a talk show at Assamese TV channel DY365 on Jan 16, had allegedly made some ‘unconstitutional, false, communal and illegal’ statements. Barpeta District Youth Congress, in its FIR lodged on Jan 18 at the Manida police outpost in the district, has alleged that the minister had talked about ‘Bangladeshi Muslim foreigners’ in Baghbar Assembly constituency despite the fact that over 90% population of the constituency has been included in the draft NRC, said The Shillong Times. FIR has been signed by 21 members of Congress’ youth body including its local president Anwarul Islam Khan. “How can a dignified minister say 90,000 Bangladeshi Muslims are staying in Baghbar when 95% of there have been included in the NRC,” Khan was quoted by The Hindu.India Tomorrow
Huge Controversy Over BJP Lawmaker's Offensive Comments Against Mayawati
Lucknow: A lawmaker of the ruling BJP in Uttar Pradesh has drawn severe criticism from the opposition for offensive comments targeting BSP chief Mayawati who, she said, "was a blot on womankind",accusing her of "selling her dignity for power"."She (Mayawati) has no self-respect... she was almost molested earlier and yet... in history, when Draupadi was molested, she took a vow to seek revenge... but this woman, she lost everything, but still sold her dignity for the sake of power. We strongly condemn Mayawati ji. She is a blot on womankind. A woman who gulped insults for comfort and power...is a blot on womankind," Sadhana Singh, the legislator from Mughalsarai, said on Saturday.The lawmaker's comments were in apparent reference to the infamous episode when Ms Mayawati was assaulted by Samajwadi Party workers at a guest house in Lucknow in 1995 that triggered decades of animosity. That ended when the two parties decided to come together for the national elections in Uttar Pradesh, with a "gathbandhan" or alliance announced at a joint press conference by Mayawati and Akhilesh Yadav last week. Ndtv
Deletion of 1.9 lakh voters from rolls sparks AAP-BJP row
New Delhi: A political slugfest broke out between AAP and BJP over the deletion of 1.9 lakh voters from the electoral list published by Delhi’s chief electoral officer. AAP seemed to take this as validation of its allegation that names of 30 lakh voters,predominantly of Muslim, Poorvanchali and Baniya communities, had been deleted as part of a “conspiracy”.As AAP spokesperson Raghav Chadha, said:“For the first time ever, there has been a decline in the number of voters in Delhi. This clearly vindicates our claim that BJP has engineered the biggest ever voter deletion fraud against Delhiites. BJP is rattled as it has understood that it is going to face a humiliating defeat in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. Party specifically targeted communities like Muslims, Poorvanchalis,and Baniyas because its policies have greatly hurt communities— economically and otherwise.” Chadha argued that Delhi had always witnessed a net increase in the voter list during roll revisions. “It is shocking that despite an increasing population, the electoral rolls are reflecting a decrease in the number of eligible voters,”he said. AAP plans to pursue this matter seriously.“We will ensure BJP is not allowed to snatch any citizen’s constitutional right to vote,” asserted Chadha, calling on election commission to publicly reveal how there had been a net decrease in electoral rolls despite an increase in the voting population.TOI
Need to defeat dangerous BJP Govt at any cost:Kejriwal
https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/need-to-defeat-dangerous-bjp-Govt -at-any-cost-arvind-kejriwal/article26037287.ece
Kolkata:Delhi CM  Arvind Kejriwal has called upon people to defeat the “dangerous” BJP Govt  at Centre at any cost.Stating that the country was at the crossroads of a serious crisis, he said there is need for immediate change of the Modi Govt  to save the country and democracy.“If the Modi-Shah combine continues to rule the country by winning the 2019 elections, it will change the Constitution and further elections will never take place. A fascist regime will set in as was done by Hitler in Germany,” Kejriwal said at Trinamool Congress mega Opposition rally in Kolkata.He accused BJP of creating enmity among people in the name of religion.PTI
Dawat-e-Islami holds ‘Ijtema’ in Karnataka’s Hubli under Congress MLA’s watch, sparks controversy
Hubli: A Pakistan-based religious group has triggered a major controversy after they announced plans to hold a convention in Karnataka over the weekend. The two-day ‘Ijtema’ by Dawat-e-Islami is being held in Hubli despite objections by various Muslim groups. However, authorities from the group claim that they have received permission to go on with the event. Interestingly, the outfit’s programmes are banned even in Pakistan. While several Muslims vocalised their displeasure to the event, Congress leader MB Patil declined to comment on the matter and said that it has not come to his notice and that he was not aware of the event.However, in a major twist to the tale, Times Now has accessed exclusive visuals that show Congress MLA Prasad Abbayya visiting the grounds a few days earlier where he was seen with the organisers, clearly indicating that he had given his backing for the event.The event was denied permission in Telangana by the police who cited law and order concerns, after which the organisation approached the Karnataka Congress MLA, who agreed to it. Abbayya is the same MLA was in a soup for seeking help and votes from the radical Social Democratic Party of India during Karnataka elections.Times Now
ISI-backed module busted, 3 arrested
New Delhi: A Pakistan-ISI module was busted with the arrest of three people from Delhi and Kerala. The special cell of the Delhi Police has arrested three suspects, including an Afghan national, for planning to kill senior RSS leaders in Karnataka's Mangaluru, with a motive of causing riots in the country. They also had several dignitaries from Delhi on their list.The three suspects have been identified as Sonu alias Tahsim, Riayujdeen and Wali Mohammed Afghan.One of the arrested suspects purportedly worked for a close aide of Dawood Ibrahim - Ghulam Rasool Patty. Dawood Ibrahim is suspected to have been hiding in Pakistan.The suspect had fled after the Gujarat riots. The same person was also been accused of being involved in BJP leader Haren Pandya's assassination.indiatoday
UP: 2018 Kasganj violence accused nabbed for sharing provoking post
Amid high alert to ward off any untoward incident on the occasion of Republic Day, the Kasganj Police on Saturday arrested two persons for sharing provoking content on social media. The two — Vishal Thakur and Anukalp Chauhan — had also been named accused in the previous year’s violence in the district during Tiranga Yatra on the occasion of Republic Day. Kasganj circle officer Gabendra Pal Gautam told TOI that the two accused were posing threat to peace and tranquility in the district. Thakur posted a revolver on his Facebook wall. “Using social media, the two threatened to take out ‘Tiranga Yatra’ even after their written request to the district magistrate had been turned down. Their act of showing weapon on social media was also an attempt to provoke and disobey police rule.” “Vishal and Anukalp have been booked under CrPc 151,” said JKasganj station house officer Ashok Kumar. Thakur, the prime accused in the 2018 Kasganj violence, is a member of Sankalp Foundation, whose chairperson is Anukalp Chauhan (26). Chandan Gupta, 21, who died of bullet injury in the previous year’s violence, was also a member of the foundation. TOI
SC collegium recalls proposal to elevate lawyer to Allahabad HC after Centre’s repeated objection
The Supreme Court collegium has recalled a proposal to elevate advocate Amit Negi to the position of a judge of the Allahabad High Court after the Centre sent it back for the second time, Live Law reported on Friday.The High Court collegium first recommended Negi for elevation in April 2016. The top court collegium cleared the proposal the same month and then again in Nov. 2016.But the recommendation to elevate him was held back in July 2017 after the collegium got to know about a first information report filed against the lawyer. Later, the chief justice of India was informed that the High Court had dismissed FIR and the Uttar Pradesh govt did not appeal against the move, Bar and Bench reported.scroll
Mumbai: Muslim groups hail 10% quota
MUMBAI: Muslim groups welcomed the 10% reservation in education and jobs to candidates of general category announced by the Centre recently. Members of Muslim NGOs, community leaders and activists met on Saturday to discuss the 10% reservation in education and jobs. "It is is a historic decision and economically weak Muslims should take benefit of this reservation," said Maulana Azad Minorities Financial Development Corporation chairman Haji Haider Azam. All India Milli Council (Maharashtra) general secretary MA Khalid, a critic of the Modi Govt , hailed the move. "...For the first time PM Narendra Modi has given us a chance to praise him and his Govt ," said Khalid. TOI  
Israel plans to close UNRWA schools in occupied East Jerusalem
UN refugee agency for Palestinians said Israeli authorities did not inform the group of a plan regarding shutting down UNRWA-run schools in occupied East Jerusalem. Israeli media reported that state's National Security Council will revoke permits allowing UNRWA schools to operate starting next school year. The schools will be replaced by schools run by the Jerusalem municipality, supported by Israel's education ministry. "UNRWA's existence in Jerusalem is not a gift from Israel," Sami Meshasha, spokesperson for the agency said in a press statement on Sunday."There are bilateral agreements binding on Israel to respect the agency's installations, jurisdiction and immunity in Jerusalem," he said."In addition, Israel is a party to the 1946 Refugee Convention, and such attempts are in violation of this Convention."UNRWA runs seven schools in two refugee camps in occupied East Jerusalem, serving a total of 3,000 students.Israeli plan is the latest blow to the agency, after the United States's decision last year to halt its funding.aljazeera
Israel allows transfer of Qatari cash to Gaza
Israeli govt has allowed the transfer of Qatari funds to the blockaded Gaza Strip, according to the Israeli army radio on Sunday. The radio said a Qatari envoy will arrive at Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv on Sunday or Monday before heading to the Palestinian territory.The move came two week after the Israeli govt suspended the transfer of the money allocated to pay salaries of employees in the Gaza Strip. Israel cited rocket fire from the Palestinian territory for suspending the transfer of the Qatari cash.There was no confirmation yet from Israel or Qatar on the report.Anadolu agency
Israeli PM heads to Chad to restore relations
Israel's PM  has departed for the central African nation of Chad to officially restore relations.PM Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday hailed what he called a "historic and important breakthrough" with the Muslim-majority country that borders Libya and Sudan.Chad's President Idriss Deby visited Jerusalem in November. Netanyahu has made great efforts to extend Israeli diplomacy to Africa and has visited the continent several times in recent years. It's part of an overall policy of seeking allies among developing countries that have historically sided with the Palestinians at UN and other international forums. Netanyahu says this outreach "causes outrage in Iran and among the Palestinians". Chad broke off relations with Israel in 1972. It plays a key role in combatting armed groups in the Sahara. Deby's visit to Israel was the first by a leader of the Central African country that severed diplomatic ties with Israel in 1972.Israel maintains diplomatic ties with 32 of the continent's 54 countries.aljazeera
Syrian air defence repels Israeli attack: media
Syrian military air defences thwarted an Israeli attack on Sunday, shooting down several missiles in the south of the country, state media said."Our air defence systems thwarted ... an Israeli air aggression ... and prevented it from achieving any of its goals,"military source told state agency SANA.It gave no further details.An Israeli military spokesperson declined to comment.PM Benjamin Netanyahu acknowledged an Israeli attack last week on what he called an Iranian arms cache in Syria, where Tehran provides Damascus with vital support.aljazeera
Beirut summit: Arab leaders discuss free trade, Syria refugees
Beirut:Arab Economic and Social Development Summit has kicked off in Lebanon's capital, overshadowed by political rifts and poor attendance among Arab heads of state, many of whom pulled out at the last minute.20 countries taking part in the summit on Sunday aim to make a joint statement on a 29-item agenda that ranges from discussions on an Arab free trade zone and the economic effect of Syrian refugees on host countries. The summit takes place amid increasing political and economic instability in Lebanon, which hosts hundreds of thousands of Syrian and Palestinian refugees.The economic meeting is a prelude to the actual Arab League summit taking place in Tunisia in March.aljazeera
Taliban attack in Afghanistan kills 8 security forces
A Taliban car bomb targeted a convoy of vehicles carrying the provincial governor of Logar in Afghanistan and the head of the region's intelligence agency on Sunday. At least 8 Afghan security forces were killed and 10 others were wounded. The top officials were not injured. The explosives-packed car detonated on the main highway between Logar and Kabul, said Shahpoor Ahmadzai, the spokesman for Logar's provincial police.Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the Taliban, said in a statement that the group was responsible for the blast and that a "large number" of Afghan special forces had been killed or wounded.Taliban regularly inflates the number and type of casualties that result from their attacks. Logar is around 74km south of the capital and is known as a strategic gateway to Kabul.The Taliban has an active presence in most areas of the province. In recent weeks, forces from Afghanistan's intelligence service, the NDS, have raided Taliban hideouts in Logar. aljazeera
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Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 6:49 PM)


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