23 March 2019

23 March ND; After J&K Jamaat, Centre bans Yasin Malik-led JKLF/ Mob Attacks Muslim Family at Gurugram House, Horrifying Video Shows Women Pleading for Help

NEWS DIGEST, Afternoon 
23 March 2019: 15 Rajab 1440:Vol: 11, No:157
After J&K Jamaat, Centre bans Yasin Malik-led JKLF
Yasin Malik-led JKLF was banned by the Centre under anti-terror law PTI reported quoting officials. The outfit has been banned for alleged promotion of secessionist activities in Jammu and Kashmir, they said.They said the organisation has been banned under various provisions of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. A notification banning the group issued by Ministry of Home Affairs, says that the organisation is:"involved in anti-national and subversive activities intended to disrupt the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India. is in close touch with militant outfits and is supporting extremism and militancy in Jammu and Kashmir and elsewhere. is supporting and inciting claims for secession of a part of the Indian territory from the Union and supporting terrorist and separatist groups fighting for this purpose by indulging in activities and articulations intended to disrupt the territorial integrity of India. "PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti questioned the ban saying Yasin Malik, who had already renounced violence, was treated as a stakeholder by former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.This is the second organisation in Jammu and Kashmir which has been banned this month. Earlier, the Centre had banned the Jamaat-e-Islami J&K.thequint
ED imposes Rs 14.4 lakh penalty on separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani
New Delhi:Enforcement Directorate (ED) Friday imposed a penalty of Rs 14.4 lakh on J&K separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani in 2002 Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) case for allegedly acquiring USD 10,000 and a sum of Rs 10 lakh through illegal means.The investigation, which was initiated on the basis of a report by the IT department, stated that it had seized Rs 10 lakh and USD 10,000 from Geelani’s ground floor residence at Hyderpora, Srinagar on June 9, 2002.As per ED sources, Geelani’s wife, who was also examined gave away some information regarding the seized Indian currency but was unable to explain the source of the foreign currency. “Geelani did not tender any explanation or evidence regarding the lawful acquisition, holding, ownership or possession of the said seized amount apart from the verbal denial which was submitted by him during the investigation,” sources said.On Wednesday, a Delhi court had allowed the agency to quiz Geelani’s son-in-law Altaf Shah and others in connection with a terror-funding case.A similar proceeding against another Yasin Malik, Chairman of JKLF, was also underway. indianexpress
ED arrests Zakir Naik's financier Najmudin Sathak
Mumbai: ED has arrested jeweller Abdul Kadir Najmudin Sathak here for assisting Zakir Naik by transferring funds of dubious origins from the UAE to him.The agency said the funds were used to facilitate production of videos meant to spread communal hatred and radicalize a particular community. Sathak was director of Global Broadcasting Corp FZE LLC, which owned the Peace TV channel which broadcast the "communal and inflammatory" speeches of televangelist Naik from UAE to the Middle East and Africa, an ED statement said."Investigation revealed that Global Broadcasting Corp was controlled by Naik through Sathak who was his trusted aide."IANS
PSA slapped on Ameer of J&K Jamaat, shifted to Kathua jail:freepresskashmir
Srinagar: Ameer Jama’at-e-Islami J&K Dr Abdul Hamid Fayaz has been booked under draconian Public Safety Act on Saturday.Sources said that Dr Fayaz has been shifted to Kathua jail. He was arrested on Feb.23 from his residence at Hyderpora and was placed under police detention.freepresskashmir
New Delhi should rethink on Jamaat ban: Sajad Lone
People’s Conference chairman Sajad Ghani Lone Friday said that banning Jamaat-e-Islami and resorting to mass arrests have achieved nothing in the past, nor will achieve anything now.He suggested New Delhi to rethink on its decision banning JeI, which has invested heavily in the education sector across Jammu and Kashmir. “Banning JeI is a tried and tested act which has failed miserably in the past. New Delhi needs to have a rethink on it. I don’t support this ban and condemn it,” he said.Sajad was accompanying his party candidate Raja Ajaz Ali who filed nomination papers for Lok Sabha election at Baramulla on Friday. greaterkashmir
J&K : Family, teachers seek justice in Rizwan Pandit’s ‘custodial death’
Srinagar : Family of deceased teacher Rizwan Asad Pandit, 28, who died in the police custody last week, has called for a judicial probe into the incident, as Valley two top teachers’ associations on Friday supported the family and also sought justice in the case.“My brother’s spine was broken as per the report of SMHS hospital. The body has bruises and cuts all over. Even on the head and the face, the wounds were visible. His vitals were damaged. Are they signs of a man escaping from police custody?” said the victim’s elder Mubashir Assad said.Pandit was a post-graduate in Physics and ran a coaching institute and also taught at a nearby school and a varsity. He was picked up by the police’s special counter-insurgency cell from Srinagar on Sunday and his body was handed over to the family on Tuesday. Pandit was also a member of now-banned Jamaat-e-Islami and was first detained in August last year and later released in January this year.thehindu
8 Militants Killed in J&K Encounters in Over 48 Hrs
At least eight militants have been eliminated in J&K in over 48 hours during encounters between militants and security forces in at least four places, including Shopian, Baramulla, Bandipora and Sopore. The encounter at Bandipora district’s Hajin area, also claimed the life of a 12-year-old civilian who lost his life after being held hostage. The Quint
Mob Attacks Muslim Family at Gurugram House, Horrifying Video Shows Women Pleading for Help
Gurugram: The members of a Muslim family were mercilessly beaten with iron rods and hockey sticks, and their house was pelted with stones by a mob of over 40 men in Bhondsi, Gurugram, on Thursday. While the police claimed that the “brawl” was triggered over a game of cricket on Holi, the victim family said it was a planned attack by a group of people backed by a Hindutva outfit.The police have arrested six people for the attack and booked them for attempt to murder.A video of the brutal assault shared on social media shows around 10 men attacking the family’s male members with rods and sticks in the verandah of their home even as a woman prays for them to stop, her cries filling the air.The men continued beating one man, seen bleeding from his head, till he fell unconscious. Another man was seen lying motionless in the corner, but even that did not stop the mob from raining blows on him. Police said the incident took place around 5pm. One of the victims, Shahid, told the cops in his statement that six to seven drunk men had asked his family members not to play cricket on the street outside their house in Bhup Singh Nagar. When they continued to play cricket, the men were joined by over 40 youths who attacked the family with batons, iron rods, hockey sticks, and water pipes, the cops said.In a bid to save themselves, the victims rushed into their house but some of the attackers managed to barge in and beat them. The ones who couldn’t enter threw stones at the house.The victim family alleged the police took about 40 minutes to come to their rescue, though they kept calling on the help number. By then, the attackers had escaped, they said. Politicians cutting across party lines have taken to Twitter to blast out on the BJP government led by CM Manohar Lal Khattar for the ghastly incident. news18
‘Go to Pakistan’: 20-25 men barge into Gurgaon home, assault Muslim family
Muslim man killed by group of 20 in UP's Sonbhadra
Sonbhadra: When the entire nation was symbolically burning evil on the night of Holika Dahan, Kamrun Begum never thought something evil was going to take place right in her backyard. 48-year-old woman saw some people converging at Imam Chowk near her house and sent her husband Mohammed Anwar to find out what was happening at the chowk. On the night of 20 March, Anwar, 50, was attacked and killed by a group of over 20 people in Parsoi village of Sonbhadra district in Uttar Pradesh.Hailing from Ghazipur, 25-year-old Hasnain Anwar Seikh, said that his father was strolling in the village after having dinner when he saw around 20 men gathered near Imam Chowk on the night of Holika Dahan. "My mother told my father that something was happening at Imam Chowk and asked him to go there and check as it was not the place where Holika is burned. My father went there and someone attacked him with an axe from behind. They gagged him and started beating him up. We were helpless as no one from the village came to rescue him. We called the police helpline and with the help of police, we took him to the hospital, but by then, it was too late. My father was declared dead on arrival," the mourning son said.According to the police, Anwar was killed because he opposed the demolition of Imam Chowk, which was allegedly illegally constructed by the community.The deceased was looking after the farms and is survived by seven sons, one daughter and his wife. All his sons are settled and have small businesses of their own.The police has lodged an FIR against 19 people and two unnamed persons. While 13 people have already been taken into custody, the police have launched a manhunt to nab the rest. After the incident, the Muslim community — which has only 3 families in the village — is living under fear. Such is the extent of fear that Anwar’s family has now shifted to Obra market in Sonbhadra from the village.
Kannur: Explosion in RSS functionary’s house, 2 children injured
Kannur: 2 children, who are also relatives and one of them the son of a local RSS functionary, were seriously injured when a country-made bomb, apparently stocked there, exploded inside the compound of the house of one of them, at Naduvil in the hilly areas of the district on Saturday afternoon. Police also recovered weapons and raw materials to make bomb from the house during a raid later.According to Kudiyanmala police, the incident happened around 1.30 pm when the two kids, identified as Gokul (7), son of Muthiramala Shibhu, who is an RSS functionary, and Kajinraj (12), son of Kumar, both residents of the same locality in Naduvil, were removing miscellaneous things from around the compound of the house of Shibu, as part of making a cage for the birds. Kajin is the son of a relative who is also a neighbour of Shibu.While doing that the boys stood on something and it exploded causing injury, said police. On getting the information, the police and the bomb squad reached the spot and conducted a search in which the raw materials including gunpowder and aluminium powder, as also a few swords and knives, and a hacker were recovered from the house. Police suspects that the materials were kept in house of Shibu, who is a taluk-level functionary of RSS. Police have strengthened vigil following the incident and 2 boys have been admitted in hospital.TOI
Pak calls for peace with India as it shows off its military might
Pakistan wants peace with India and they should focus on health and education, the Pakistan President said on Saturday during a parade to show off its military might following a tense standoff between the nuclear-armed neighbours.“We do not believe in war and want to solve problems through dialogue,” President Arif Alvi said in his Pakistani Republic Day speech.“Instead of war we should focus on education and health.”The President, who largely holds ceremonial duties, said India had blamed Pakistan for the suicide-bomb attack without evidence, which he said was irresponsible.Saturday’s military parade included an air show featuring the Pakistani-built JF-17 fighter jet. One of the aircraft shot down the Indian plane last month.The parade was attended by Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, who was invited to attend as the chief guest, and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan.Reuters
‘Kashmir is central issue’: Imran Khan’s reply to PM Modi message on terror
Sam Pitroda has questions on Balakot, PM Modi says he kick-started Pak day
New Delhi :Technocrat-turned-Congress politician Sam Pitroda was at the centre of a political row Friday after he sought “more facts” and proof of the death toll in the Balakot air strike and, while referring to the Mumbai 26/11 attack, said one cannot “jump on an entire nation… just because some people came here and attacked”. PM Narendra Modi said “kick-started the Pakistan National Day celebrations on behalf of the Congress, ironically by demeaning India’s armed forces”. Distancing the party from Pitroda’s remarks, Congress communication department head Randeep Surjewala said “the expression of opinion by an individual has nothing to do with the opinion of the party”. The view of the Congress, he said, was that the Balakot strike was a shining example of the valour of the IAF. At the same time, he said, the Pulwama attack was a “national security and intelligence failure” of Modi govt. Pitroda, had sought more information about the Balakot dead count. Saying he admired India’s security forces and “they did a super job”, he said: “If they killed 300, it is okay. All I am saying is can you give me more facts and prove it. That’s all. I am not debating anything. I am not even questioning anything. I want data because I am trained to believe in data.”indianexpress
Modi, Jaitley do not know economics: Swamy
Kolkata :BJP MP Subramanian Swamy Saturday claimed neither Prime Minister Narendra Modi nor Finance Minister Arun Jaitley knew economics, as they dub India as the fifth largest economy despite it being the third largest one.In an apparent backhanded praise, Swamy said he does not understand why the prime minister says India is the world’s fifth largest economy when, as per scientifically acceptable procedures for GDP calculations, the Indian economy is the third largest after the USA and China.PTI
RSS-backed ‘Muslim body’ plans campaign for Modi, Ram temple
Muslim Rashtriya Manch (MRM),an organisation inspired by then RSS sarsanghachalak K Sudarshan, would act as Modi-led BJP’s campaign arm within the Muslim community in the upcoming elections. MRM will also canvas for building a Ram temple in Ayodhya where a mosque once stood. It wants the area to be developed as a multi-religious centre with a Ram temple as the centrepiece.At a meeting with BJP organising secretary Ram Lal on March 2, MRM was tasked with spreading the message within the community that the Modi government is not anti-Muslim. Instead, it is one that treats Muslims as equal citizens and not a minority to be appeased. The organisation would closely work with the BJP’s minority cell and has identified about 120 seats, predominantly in UP, Bihar and Bengal, where the Muslim community has significant influence, MRM national convenor Mohammad Afzal told ET. ET
Yeddyurappa Diary May Reveal Pay-Offs to BJP Leaders, Congress Says, BJP Slams 'Forgery'
New Delhi:Quoting a report in the Caravan, Congress party today alleged that India’s income-tax department was in possession of a diary that details pay-offs of over Rs 1,800 crore to top BJP leaders, with entries apparently written in the hand of Karnataka state president BS Yeddyurappa.According to the entries, the recipients of the funds include finance minister Arun Jaitley, home minister Rajnath Singh, and transport minister Nitin Gadkari, as well BJP Central Committee and state legislators, Caravan reported.Addressing the press on Friday, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala demanded an investigation into the evidence that Yeddyurappa – a former chief minister of Karnataka tainted by corruption allegations – arranged these payouts through mining baron and former state minister Gali Janaradhana Reddy.“5 facts are disclosed from this diary. Rs 2,690 crore was extorted and Rs 1,800 crore was given to BJP’s central team,” Surjewala said. “Yeddyurappa was a CM from May 2008 to July 2011, and this diary contains his signatures and names of top BJP leaders.”“It mentions the names of senior BJP leaders from Rajnath Singh to Jaitley,” he added. “There is an allegation of a bribe of Rs 1,800 crore on the top BJP leadership.”“Is it true or false? The diary with BS Yeddyurappa’s sign on it was with Income Tax Department since 2017. If that is the case why did Modi ji and BJP did not get it investigated?” Surjewala asked.
What BS Yeddyurappa Said To Tax Officials About "Bribe Records"
Oppn Bihar pact: RJD gets 20, Congress only 9, Kanhaiya left out
Patna :Opposition’s grand alliance in Bihar announced its seat-sharing Friday tying up — for the first time — with CPI-ML(Liberation) by giving it a seat but not accommodating CPI which had asked for Begusarai for former JNU students’ union chief Kanhaiya Kumar.Veteran leader Sharad Yadav, who heads Loktantrik Janata Dal, will contest on the RJD symbol. The Congress, which got nine, did not get some of its desired seats such as Aurangabad but was assured of being “compensated” with a Rajya Sabha seat against the first vacancy. This is the least number of seats Congress will contest in Lok Sabha polls in Bihar.RJD national spokesperson and Rajya Sabha MP Manoj Kumar Jha announced that the RJD has kept 20 seats for itself, RLSP will contest five seats and Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) and Vikasshil Insaan Party (VIP) 3 seats each. Jha announced seats and candidates for the first phase. CPI, which formed an alliance with RJD in the 1990 and 1995 Assembly polls, however, could not find place in Grand Alliance.
Left out of Bihar alliance, Kanhaiya Kumar to be CPI candidate in Begusarai
A day after the Grand Alliance allotted just one seat to the Left parties in Bihar, CPI on Saturday confirmed that it would field former JNU students union president Kanhaiya Kumar from Begusarai Lok Sabha seat.CPI Bihar secretary Satyanarayan Singh said the party had taken a final call to field Kanhaiya Kumar. “The executive committee meeting has been called on Sunday to decide on the number of seats the party will contest but a final call on Kanhaiya has been taken,” he said.HT
Election LIVE: BJP Releases Sixth List of 48 Candidates, Appoints Uma Bharti as Vice President
BJP declares the sixth list of 48 candidates for upcoming elections. Jayant Sinha will contest from Hazaribagh, Arjun Munda from Khunti, Vidhyut Varan Mahatao from Jamshedpur and Pashupati Nath Singh from Dhanbad. The party has also declared six names for the assembly elections in Goa and Gujarat. With the announcement of 48 contenders from Goa, MP, Jharkhand, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, and Karnataka, the party has so far fielded 286 leaders for Lok Sabha polls. Addressing a press conference, Nadda said that senior leader Uma Bharti has told the CEC that she is "not interested" in contesting elections this time. The party has decided to give her charge of BJP's vice president. news18
After Advani is replaced by Amit Shah in Gandhinagar, Sena calls him ‘BJP’s tallest leader’
Mumbai :Shiv Sena Saturday said L K Advani would remain the “tallest leader” of the BJP irrespective of his poll presence, 2 days after the party nominated its chief Amit Shah from Gandhinagar, a seat represented by BJP patriarch.Marking a generational shift in the BJP, the party recently announced candidature of Shah, who will be contesting his debut parliamentary election, from Gandhinagar.indianexpress
MPs Who Kept Stirring Communal Pot in UP West Find Place in BJP’s List Again
New Delhi:BJP’s first list of candidates that was unveiled included a few surprising names, especially from the Western Uttar Pradesh region, which has witnessed communal clashes since 2014. Many of the party MPs, who represented these restive constituencies, are once again being fielded from seats.Some of the controversial names which have figured in the saffron party’s first candidate list are - Raghav Lakhanpal (Saharanpur), Dr Sanjeev Kumar Balyan (Muzaffarnagar), Kunwar Bhartendra Singh (Bijnor), Kunwar Sarvesh Kumar (Moradabad) and Satish Gautam (Aligarh).news18
BJP Shows Shatrughan Sinha the Door in Bihar, Fields Ravi Shankar Prasad from Patna Sahib
New Delhi: Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad will be the BJP’s face from Patna Sahib, the constituency of actor-turned-rebel leader Shatrughan Sinha, the party announced on Saturday. Prasad is likely to face Sinha in the upcoming elections as there are reports that the actor will contest as a Congress candidate.Sinha, who is expected to join the Mahagathbandhan comprising the Congress and RJD besides several smaller parties, recently came out with a series of tweets decrying the ‘Main bhi chowkidaar’ campaign that is meant to be a riposte to AICC president Rahul Gandhi's "Chowkidar hi chor hai" barb at Prime Minister Narendra Modi.news18
District chiefs, civic leaders write to Rahul Gandhi for tie-up with AAP
New Delhi: Sections in Delhi Congress pressing for an alliance with the Aam Aadmi Party are exerting their pressure with district party presidents, former state chiefs and party leaders in the municipal corporations writing to party president Rahul Gandhi in favour of a poll pact. A decision on a tie-up is awaiting the consideration of Rahul Gandhi with party leaders hoping for clarity soon.The deliberations within the party have seen those in favour of an alliance arguing that the PCC leadership has not been able to explain whether Congress will be able to win seats in Delhi if it went on its own. Those opposing AAP feel that a tie up compromises prospects for the assembly election due in 2020 while throwing a life line to chief minister Arvind Kejriwal.TOI
With 30% minorities, Bijnor had just one Muslim MP since Independence
BIJNOR: Since independence, Bijnor Lok Sabha seat has had only one Muslim MP, in 1957, despite the fact that 30% of the voters here are Muslims. Now, as the general election is round the corner, the candidates fielded by various political parties are all non-Muslims and from the Gujjar community. While BJP has fielded Kunwar Bhartendra Singh, BSP has fielded Malook Nagar. Congress has fielded Indira Bhati and Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party has fielded Isham Singh Gujjar. Of these four candidates, three are Gujjars.TOI
BSP List Announces 11 Candidates, Karnataka Leader Danish Ali to Contest From Amroha
Lucknow:With less than a month to go for the Lok Sabha elections, BSP on Friday announced its candidates for 11 Lok Sabha constituencies in Uttar Pradesh, including Danish Ali who joined the party leaving the Janata Dal-Secular.Ali, who joined the BSP on March 16 has been named the BSP candidate from Amroha.After Ali joined the BSP, Karnataka Chief Minister and JD-S leader H.D. Kumaraswamy said that he joined the BSP with the party's consent."Ali joined the BSP in consent with me and our national President H.D. Deve Gowda in a purely political arrangement between the two parties. It is a thoughtful political decision taken by JD-S and BSP to win more seats in the Lok Sabha elections," Kumaraswamy had tweeted last Saturday.IANS
Justice Ghose takes oath as country’s first Lokpal
NEW DELHI:President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday administered the oath of office to Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghose as the country’s first Lokpal.The oath was administered at a ceremony held at Rashtrapati Bhavan, a communiqué issued by President’s office said.PTI
FIR Lodged Against 16 Muslim Activists in Jharkhand for Asking Representation in LS Polls
RANCHI –– Muslims across Jharkhand are in a state of shock as a FIR was lodged against 16 prominent Muslim activists for organising a meeting to discuss Muslim representation in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.FIR has accused them of making an attempt to disrupt communal harmony. But activists have claimed that they had assembled with a single agenda if putting forward a demand before politicians that Muslims should also be granted tickets to contest elections from Muslim-dominated constituencies. FIR complaint was lodged by some Vijay Kumar Uraon at Hind Pidi police station on March 17 and have charged the organisers of disturbing communal harmony, offending the sentiment of a particular community and violating the model code of conduct. The complaint was filed on the basis of a report published in a local Hindi newspaper (Azad Sipahi) which highlighted the meeting organised by a group of social activists.The report is titled ‘If Muslims are not allowed to contest elections from three seats (Muslim concentrated constituencies), they will contest elections under the third front’. During the meeting organised on March 15,social activists accused the Mahagathbandhan (Grand alliance) of discriminating against Muslims in allotting tickets for elections.Caravan Daily
How media ignored Rajnath’s chilling warning to India’s minorities or anyone who does not constitute BJP’s vote bank
On Friday Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to Times Now channel’s Navika Kumar. Although, the content of this interview should have caused nationwide outrage and should have made headlines in every newspaper on Saturday; it went unnoticed by almost all. This caught the attention of only one journalist, Vijaita Singh of The Hindu newspaper, who reacted in shock on Twitter.Vijaita wrote, “Home Minister Chowkidar @rajnathsingh on Samjhauta Blasts acquittal: “sarkaar Kyun appeal karegi? Kya Karne Ka matlab hai?” 68 people, including Indians were killed but HM doesn’t want to know who carried out the blasts.”Vijaita rightly highlighted the extraordinary statement of the Indian home minister, who said that the government will not appeal the verdict of the anti-terror court in Haryana, which last week acquitted all four accused in the Samjhauta Express terror attack in 2007. 68 people, mostly Pakistani nationals, were killed in the February 2007 terror attack targeting the train linking India and Pakistan.Singh told Times Now disdainfully, “Those who want to appeal can appeal. Why would the govt do it. What purpose does that serve?” This was in response to Navika’s question highlighting that 68 people had died in the 2007 terror attack and whether India as a country should seek to punish the culprits or not since the attack had taken place on Indian soil.jantakareporter
Waqf board college scam: CBI searches premises of AIADMK MP Anwar Raajha
Chennai: Sleuths from the CBI on Friday conducted searches in three places of A Anwar Raajha, AIADMK MP from Ramanathapuram, pertaining to an alleged scam in the appointment of teaching and non-teaching staff of the MSS Waqf board college in Madurai. CBI sources said searches were conducted in three places in Ramanathapuram, Madurai and Chennai. In the state capital, searches were conducted in the Waqf board's office in Mannadi, sources said. In Ramanathapuram, searches were carried out in Raajha's residence while in Madurai at the college.Raajha had created a flutter with his speech against the Triple Talaq bill in Parliament last December, after which the party was constrained to point out that it was his personal opinion. This is despite AIADMK opposing the bill. The party has formally announced an alliance with BJP. Raajha has not been given a ticket, while BJP will be contesting from Ramanathapuram.TOI
ISIL defeated in final Syria victory: US-backed SDF
US-backed fighters in Syria's have declared military victory over ISIL on Saturday, ending a 4-year battle against the group that once held territory spanning a third of Syria and Iraq.After weeks of heavy fighting, the tent camp where ISIL fighters had made their final stand in the village of Baghouz was bombed to shreds.A field pitted with abandoned trenches and bomb craters, and littered with scorched tents and the twisted metal carcasses of vehicles, was all that remained.Half buried in the dirt was a tattered shred of ISIL's notorious black flag, while a giant yellow flag belonging to Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) fluttered atop a shell-pocked building.An official of SDF announced the defeat of ISIL via Twitter on Saturday. It is not known whether the group's leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, is still alive or where he might be hiding.Meanwhile, in Raqqa, ISIL worked on weakening Syrian Army (FSA), which opposed forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. It eventually ejected the two largest FSA factions at the start of 2014.aljazeera
ISIL territory '100 percent eliminated' in Syria: US
US Defense Department said on Friday that ISIL no longer holds any territory in Syria, according to a White House spokeswoman.US Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan briefed President Donald Trump as he was travelling to Florida on Air Force One, spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said.aljazeera
Muslim countries call for measures on Islamophobia after New Zealand attack
Muslim countries called for "genuine" measures against Islamophobia after attack on 2 New Zealand mosques. Violence driven by Islamophobia requires "genuine, comprehensive and systematic measures to address this affliction," ministers from the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation said in a statement after a meeting in Istanbul. OIC said attacks against mosques and murders of Muslims showed the "brutal, inhumane and horrific outcomes" of hatred of Islam.It called for countries with Muslim communities, minorities or migrants to refrain from "statements and practices that associate Islam with terror, extremism and threats" to society.AFP
Erdogan urges fight on Islamophobia 'like anti-Semitism after Holocaust'
Istanbul : Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan on Friday called on the world to fight back against Islamophobia in the same way it responded to "anti-Semitism after the Holocaust", following the deadly attacks on two New Zealand mosques.The Turkish leader has presented the mosque attacks, by a self-avowed white supremacist who killed 50 people, as part of a wider assault on Islam and demands the West do more against anti-Muslim sentiment."Just as humanity fought against anti-Semitism after Holocaust disaster, it should fight against rising Islamophobia in the same determined fashion," Erdogan told an emergency meeting of ministers from the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation in Istanbul.AFP
Pak, Malaysia voice concern on rising Islamphobia
New Zealand's women don headscarves in solidarity with Muslim victims
Christchurch : Women in Christchurch wore makeshift hijabs as a statement of peace and solidarity on Friday, a week after a white supremacist killed 50 Muslims at two mosques in the southern New Zealand city.Rafaela Stoakes, a 32-year-old mother of two, said wearing the Islamic head covering gave her an insight into what it means to stand out and feel part in the minority.On Friday morning she covered all but a few locks of her dark chestnut-coloured hair in a loose red and white scarf, crossed neatly beneath her chin and tucked into a black hiking jacket.She is one of many women in New Zealand who is embracing #HeadScarfforHarmony, to make a stand against the hate espoused by the Australian man accused of killing dozens of worshippers.Headscarves are also being worn as a mark of respect by policewomen and non-Muslim volunteers directing the crowds around the site in Christchurch holding communal prayers on Friday.Many are wearing a headscarf for the first time.AFP
Christchurch mosque reopens amid call for action on Islamophobia
Christchurch's Al Noor mosque has reopened its doors, eight days after they were shuttered in the wake of the killing of 50 Muslims in the worst mass shootings in New Zealand's modern history.Officials at Al Noor, where more than 40 people were shot dead during the attack on March 15, started allowing small groups of people back into the complex to pray and pay their respects shortly after midday on Saturday.Armed police stood guard at the gates of the complex, which were lined with flowers and messages of condolence, and by the mosque itself as returning worshippers and new visitors entered slowly, side-by-side.Inside, amid the potent smell of newly-painted walls, visitors passed through an uncarpeted hallway as they headed to the prayer room, where the dull sobs of kneeling worshippers punctuated an otherwise pristine silence.Linwood mosque, some 7km away, however, remains closed in the wake of the attack, allegedly carried out by 28-year-old Australian-born Brenton Tarrant.Suspected attacker Tarrant, a self-identified white supremacist who was living in Dunedin, on New Zealand's South Island, has been charged with one murder following the mosque attacks.However, police said in a statement last week that the person formally accused of killing had been wrongly declared dead, adding Tarrant's charge sheet would be updated when he next appeared in court on April 5.aljazeera
London adopts APPG definition of Islamophobia
London Mayor Sadiq Khan announced Friday that City Hall adopted All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on British Muslims definition of Islamophobia. Khan encouraged the government and other public bodies to do the same in a bid to tackle "hate crime and the spread of far-right messaging by also signing up to the wording."City Hall will become the largest public authority to adopt the APPG definition, which is a grouping in the parliament of the United Kingdom that is composed of members from all political parties. Anadolu
Mufti Taqi Usmani survives assassination attempt in Karachi, guards killed
Karachi: Renowned religious scholar Mufti Taqi Usmani survived an assassination attempt on Friday as unidentified gunmen opened fire on two vehicles near Karachi's NIPA Chowrangi, killing two.Mufti Taqi Usmani's two guards, one a Sindh police official and the other belonging to a private company, were killed in the targeted attack. The vehicles, which belonged to Darul Uloom Korangi, were travelling together and were fired at by assailants on motorcycles.Senior journalist Ansar Abbasi spoke with Usmani after the attack who told him he was traveling with his wife and two grandsons, all who remained unhurt. Mufti Taqi further said the motorcyclists fired from the back at the vehicle and then went forward and fired.IG Sindh Kaleem Imam said, “Investigations are underway. Counter-Terrorism Department in-charge Raja Umar Khattab said, "As per initial reports, four terrorists on two motorcycles fired at the cars."Prime Minister Imran Khan said, "The attack on an esteemed figure like Mufti Taqi Usmani is a conspiracy," vowing to make every possible effort to expose this conspiracy.Governor Sindh Imran Ismail said, "Maulana had been receiving threats for some time. He had reported that he had been receiving threats and his security had been increased."
Police claim finding 'important leads' in Mufti Taqi Usmani assassination attempt
 Israeli forces kill two Palestinians at Gaza protests
2 Palestinians have been shot dead by Israeli forces during the weekly Friday protests in the besieged Gaza Strip, according to officials.Ashraf al-Qidra, spokesperson for the health ministry, said the two male demonstrators - aged 18 and 29 -were shot in separate incidents near the Israeli fence east of the Gaza Strip. Jihad Harara was shot in the head east of Gaza City, while the older man, Nidal Shatat, was hit in the chest near the al-Bureij refugee camp in central Gaza, al-Qidra wrote on Twitter.aljazeera
Pompeo tells Lebanon to choose Hezbollah or independence
Beirut: A 7-minute media address by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday was dominated by his country's preoccupation with Hezbollah and, in effect, its patron Iran.Pompeo read out his statement during his visit to Beirut as his Lebanese counterpart Gebran Bassil watched with an unwavering gaze.The top US diplomat minced no words while declaring the intentions of President Donald Trump's administration to take on Hezbollah for its "criminal activities and terrorist network" albeit by "peaceful means".Referring to a recent televised speech by Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah, Pompeo claimed success of US sanctions against the group, saying "Nasrallah begged for contributions". Trump has reversed his predecessor Barack Obama's Middle East policy, abandoning the much-hailed 2015 nuclear deal with Iran and reimposing sanctions.aljazeera
US slaps Iran with fresh sanctions over weapons programmes
US on Friday imposed sanctions on 14 people and 17 entities connected to an Iranian research organisation it said had played a central role in the country's past nuclear weapons effort and which remains active.Among those designated for sanctions was the Shahid Karimi group, which works on missile and explosive-related projects for Iran's Organization of Defensive Innovation and Research, and four associated individuals, the US Treasury Department said in a statement.aljazeera
Algeria: New opposition umbrella group fails to reach consensus
Algiers, Algeria - As tens of thousands of Algerians filled the streets for the fifth week in a row on Friday in an effort to push President Abdelaziz Bouteflika from power, leading opposition figures began working on collectively shaping the country's political transition.Echoing demands of street, the National Coordination for Change (CNC), an emerging bi-partisan umbrella group, that ranges in membership from socialist to Islamist activists, has rejected Bouteflika's plan to extend his 20-year rule, while overseeing Algeria's political transition.This newly-formed group issued a statement on Monday titled the "platform of change" in which it urged Bouteflika to hand over power to a temporary collective presidency on April 28, day on which his fourth term expires.In statement, CNC also called for the dissolution of parliament and asked the military not to interfere in politics.aljazeera
Death toll from Russian attacks in Idlib rises to 15
IDLIB:The death toll from Russian airstrikes in Syria’s northwestern Idlib province has risen to 15, according to the White Helmets civil defense agency on Saturday.  Earlier reports said ten people had been killed when Russian warplanes struck opposition-held areas in Idlib’s Al-Fuah, Khan Sheikhun and Kafriya districts on Friday. White Helmets sources said 28 civilians were also injured in the attacks.  Attacks carried out by the Syrian regime and Iran-backed terrorist groups in Idlib’s de-escalation zone are estimated to have killed at least 166 civilians -- and injured more than 470 others -- since the beginning of 2019.Anadolu Agency 
Death toll from Iraq's ferry disaster rises to 120
The full extent of the ferry disaster in the Iraqi city of Mosul is becoming clearer.Civil Defence says the number of dead is now at least 120, while 100 people are still missing.Iraq's Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi is formally requesting a local governor be sacked over the incident.aljazeera
Over 20 Chadian soldiers 'killed in Boko Haram raid'
Boko Haram fighters have killed at least 23 Chadian soldiers, according to military sources, in what appeared to be the deadliest such attack inside Chad by the armed group.The assault in the early hours of Friday took place in the town of Dangdala, near the banks of Lake Chad, two security sources told the Reuters news agency.The attackers were believed to have crossed the border from neighbouring Niger before launching the attack.aljazeera
Egypt court upholds jail terms against 262 Brotherhood loyalists over violence
Cairo:Egypt's top Court of Cassation upheld jail terms varying from 3 to 25 years against 262 loyalists of the Muslim Brotherhood group over violence.The defendants have been accused of committing acts of vandalism and violence in response to the security dispersal of a sit-in in Giza against the ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.The court rejected the appeals by the defendants against earlier rulings issued by Giza Criminal Court, which sentenced 17 defendants to 25 years in jail, 223 defendants to 15 years and 22 others to three years, while acquitting 115 in the same case.The court also imposed a fine of 39 million Egyptian pounds (2.26 million US dollars) against the defendants for the damage they caused to Giza Zoo, nearby Orman Botanic Garden and the opposite building of the engineering college of Cairo University.Xinhua
Jordan rejects Arab League request to ban Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas
Jordan has rejected the Arab League’s request to ban the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas and label them “terrorist movements”, informed sources told the Shehab agency.The sources said the Arab League’s General Secretariat has sent a secret letter to the Jordanian Ministry of Interior calling for the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas to be banned in Jordan.The sources added that two Arab countries initiated the secret request ahead of the Arab Interior Ministry conference held in Tunis earlier this month.According to the sources, the Jordanian interior ministry has requested Jordanian General Intelligence Department’s opinion, which in turn replied that “the kingdom has no interest in such action” because it comes in the context of “some countries’ internal escalation” against Muslim Brotherhood and the Saudi-UAE incitement against the 2 movements.memo
'No one’s safe': Fears grow for four Egyptians deported from Malaysia
4 Egyptian men have disappeared since being deported from Malaysia and their families fear they are being tortured in Egypt,the wife of one of the men has told Middle East Eye. Malaysia suddenly sent the men back to Egypt in early March, but their arrival was never publicly confirmed, according to Jodie Harris, the Australian wife of Abdullah al-Hinnawi, 28, who says they have been kept in the dark. The men believed they had been arrested as part of common immigration raids on refugees and migrants living in Malaysia. But shortly before their deportations, they found out that Egypt had requested their extradition on security grounds.“They can be doing anything, anything to him,” said Harris, breaking down in tears as she considered the danger for her husband, who had been imprisoned in Egypt before. “I already know they hurt him the first time. I don’t want to know what they’re going to do this time.” “Because they have disappeared, they’re probably in Egypt and they’re hiding them and they’re doing whatever they want to them.”Middle East Eye
US: US Spl Counsel Mueller concludes Russia probe, delivers report to Barr
US Special Counsel Robert Mueller on Friday turned over his long-awaited final report on the contentious Russia investigation that has cast a dark shadow over Donald Trump's presidency, entangled Trump's family and resulted in criminal charges against some of the president's closest associates. Report, still confidential, marks the end of Mueller's probe but sets the stage for big public fights to come. The next steps are up to Trump's attorney general and Congress, as well as potentially the federal courts. Justice Department said Mueller delivered his final report to Attorney General William Barr and officially concluded his probe of Russian election interference and possible coordination with Trump associates.Mueller had been examining since 2017 whether Trump's campaign conspired with Moscow to try to influence the 2016 presidential election and whether Republican president later unlawfully tried to obstruct his investigation. Trump has denied collusion and obstruction, repeatedly calling the investigation a "witch-hunt". Russia has denied election interference.aljazeera
Flash: views & NEWS
More than five years after riots, Muslims in Muzaffarnagar debate whether to vote for Jat candidate
Is Kashmir's new custodial death a consequence of India's military policy?QADRI INZAMAM, trtworld
Chattisingpora: A Massacre, Its Lone Survivor and Its Aftermath:Umar Lateef Misgar
Dalit Muslim unity will create a new force in Maharashtra politics this time: Prakash Ambedkar

Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:31 PM)


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