Wednesday, 21 August 2019

21 AUG. ND:Economy in crisis: Over 3 cr face job loss in textile industry, representative body blames tax regimen/Top biscuit maker Parle may cut up to 10,000 jobs as slowdown bites/ Modi govt using ED, CBI to character assassinate Chidambaram: Rahul Gandhi

21 AUG. 2019: 19 ZilHajj 1440:Vol: 11, No:271
Economy in crisis: Over 3 cr face job loss in textile industry, representative body blames tax regimen
Indian textile industry which provides employment to about 10 crore people directly and indirectly and accounts for 2% of GDP, is staring at huge job loss, not seen in last 10 years,claimed an apex body representing the industry.According to Northern India Textile Mills Association (NITMA) - an association of textile mills located in Northern India, textiles industry is facing the worst financial crisis and slowdown, which has forced spinning companies to cut down their production and shut down their mills.“Indian spinning industry is facing the biggest crisis, resulting in huge job losses,” reads an advertisement issued on behalf of NIMTA.As per NITMA, apart from excess spinning capacity, poor demand for India yarn from overseas markets has led to the crisis.  It also blamed “high interest rates” and “state and central taxes on export” for worsening the crisis. Though India’s cotton-spinning industry has been struggling with profitability over the years,recent spurt in cotton prices has added to the woes, claimed NIMTA. Highlighting decline in the export, NIMTA said that during April-June period of this fiscal year, export of cotton yarn fell by 34.6% to $696 million as compared to $1,063 million in the same period last year.nationalheraldindia
Top biscuit maker Parle may cut up to 10,000 jobs as slowdown bites
Parle Products Pvt Ltd, a leading Indian biscuit maker, might lay off up to 10,000 workers as slowing economic growth and falling demand in the rural heartland could cause production cuts, a company executive said today. A downturn in Asia’s 3rd-largest economy is denting sales of everything from cars to clothing, forcing companies to curtail production and raising hopes that the India Govt will unveil an economic stimulus to revive growth.A sharp drop in Parle’s biscuit sales means company may have to slash production, which may result in layoffs of 8,000-10,000 people,Mayank Shah, category head at Parle, said in a telephone interview from Mumbai.“Situation is so bad, that if govt doesn’t intervene immediately...we may be forced to eliminate these positions,”he said.Parle employs about 100000 people, including direct and contract workers across 10 company-owned facilities and 125 contract manufacturing plants.Shah said demand for popular Parle biscuit brands such as Parle-G had been worsening since India rolled out GST, which imposed a higher levy on biscuits costing as low as 5 rupees, or 7 cents a pack.The higher taxes have forced Parle to offer fewer biscuits in each pack, hitting demand from lower-income consumers in rural India, which contributes over half of Parle’s revenue and where 2-thirds of Indians live.“Consumers here are extremely price-sensitive. They’re extremely conscious of how many biscuits they are getting for a particular price,” Shah said.Reuters
Tea industry in crisis with rising cost, stagnant price, Association seeks ban on areas expansion
The tea industry has been under severe stress with increasing production costs and stagnating prices, which threatened the long term viability of sector, its stakeholders claimed.Domestic consumption and exports have not picked up with rapid increase in production, leading to an oversupply situation in the sector, they said."Sector is reeling under cost pressures due to price stagnation in the backdrop of increasing cost of production, mismatch between demand-supply, high transaction costs, challenges for fair price discovery at the auctions and climate change problem," Indian Tea Association (ITA) Secretary Abhijit Sharma said at a press meet here.Providing direct employment to 1.2 million people and supports to over 3 million dependents of tea garden workers with women accounting for 50% of the employment, the tea sector is confronted with several challenges which are threatening the long term viability of industry, said members of Consultative Committee of Plantations Associations (CCPA).Sharma enumerated the challenges as stagnant tea prices vis-a-vis rising cost, causing "severe stress to the tea sector". The average tea auction price in Assam was ₹150 per kg in 2014 and all India price was ₹130.90 per kg, Sharma said adding the price rose only to ₹ 156.43 and ₹138.83, respectively in 2018.Wages for tea garden workers increased by around 22% in 2018 in Assam, thereby increasing the financial stress of the industry further, he added.nationalheraldindia
INX Media Case Live: SC to hear Chidambaram’s interim bail plea on Friday
A day after Delhi High Court rejected the anticipatory bail petition of former finance minister P Chidambaram in INX Media case, the Supreme Court today said senior Congress leader’s plea challenging the HC order will be put before the Chief Justice of India to consider for urgent listing.Justice NV Ramana told senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Chidambaram, that the case will be put before CJI Ranjan Gogoi. “I am sending it to the Chief Justice of India. He will pass orders,” the bench told Sibal. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for ED and CBI, told the bench that it is a case of money laundering of “monumental magnitude”. CBI team today visited the former finance minister’s house for the second time in the last 24 hours. The probe agency left the premises after confirming that Chidambaram was not present at his Jor Bagh residence. At around 6.30 pm Tuesday, CBI officers reached Chidambaram’s residence but left soon after questioning the occupants. Later, a team from ED also came to the residence and left after a few minutes. After failing to find Chidambaram at his residence, CBI issued a notice to him asking him to appear before the investigation officer “within two hours”.indianexpress
Modi govt using ED, CBI to character assassinate Chidambaram: Rahul Gandhi
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has rallied behind former finance minister P Chidambaram, saying the Govt is misusing central agencies to “character assassinate” the former union minister. “Modi’s Govt is using the ED, CBI & sections of a spineless media to character assassinate Mr Chidambaram. I strongly condemn this disgraceful misuse of power,” he tweeted. indianexpress
Congress to give conditional support to Assam CM’s NRC legislative route, AIUDF opposes move
Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal’s statement that his Govt will consider legislative measures to address anomalies in the final list of NRC has led to mixed reactions in the state. After a meeting with Union home minister Amit Shah on NRC process, Sonowal had said the legislative measures could be taken to address wrongful inclusions of foreigners or exclusion of genuine Indian citizens from the list, which will be published on Aug.31.“In a democracy, everyone has the right to ask questions. After the publication of NRC, if necessary in future, we will take whatever steps will be required,” PTI quoted Sonowal as saying after being asked whether any legislative steps would be taken.As per existing provisions, those left out of the final list can represent his/her case in foreigners’ tribunals(FTs).Under the provision of Foreigner Act,1946, and Foreigners (Tribunals) Order, 1964, only FTs are empowered to declare a person as a foreigner. Contrary to speculations, non-inclusion of a person’s name in NRC doesn’t by itself amount to them being declared as a foreigner.The opposition Congress party has indicated it will give “conditional support”.“Sonowal’s statement has created confusion as the existing rules are clear on what steps those left out of NRC can take. If the Assam Govt plans on taking some legislative measure, it should be fool-proof and unbiased,” said Ripun Bora, head of Congress’s Assam unit.“The measures should ensure that no Indian citizen is left out and it should ensure that no one is unnecessarily harassed. Sonowal must divulge categorically what legislative measures he is talking about. We are willing to offer conditional support on the issue,” he added.However, AIUDF, other prominent opposition party in the state, has expressed reservations. “NRC process is being monitored by NRC and barring a few exceptions, we expect an error-free final list. Existing rules already say what steps those left out of the list should take. But Sonowal’s statement on legislative measures seems to be a political conspiracy,” said Aminul Islam, general secretary of AIUDF.“We have witnessed that FTs do pass faulty orders. If BJP Govt in Assam had any goodwill, they should have approached the SC with the request that those left out should be allowed to approach civil courts for redressal. It seems the BJP is trying to extract political gain from the issue. We will oppose any legislative measure,” he added.
Trump Ready to 'Mediate' as US Tells India to Release Kashmir Political Detainees
Even as the State Department expressed concern about continuing detentions in J&K but insisted that Washington had no plans of mediation, US President Donald Trump has reiterated his desire to “do the best I can to mediate or do something” over the “explosive situation” between India and Pakistan in Kashmir where “you have millions of people that want to be ruled by others”.Trump’s latest comment suggests efforts by the Indian side – including phone calls from PM Modi – have done little to dissuade the US president from offering his services as a mediator.Speaking to reporters at the White House, Trump said that he knew the leaders of both India and Pakistan as “good friends of mine” and “great people”. “…As you know PM Khan was here just recently…And I’m going to meet PM Modi, I will be with PM Modi over the weekend, in France,” stated Trump. Both Trump and Modi will be in France to attend G-7 Summit.“And I think we’re helping the situation, but there’s tremendous problems between the two countries. And I will do the best I can to mediate or do something,” he added.“Kashmir is a very complicated place. You have Hindus and you have the Muslims and I wouldn’t say they get along so great”. He also stated that there were “millions of people” who want to be “ruled by others, and maybe on both sides, and you have two countries that haven’t gotten along in a long time”. Trump further said that Kashmir has been in a “tough situation” for “decades and decades”. “…shooting, and I don’t mean shooting like shooting a rifle, but major shooting of howitzers, of heavy arms, and this has been going on for a long, long period of time”.thewire
US urges India to free detainees, restore rights in Kashmir
US has called on India to quickly release detainees and restore basic liberties in Indian-administered Kashmir to ease tensions in the flashpoint region.“We continue to be very concerned by reports of detentions, and continued restrictions on the residents of the region,” a senior State Department official said.“We urge respect for individual rights, compliance with legal procedures and inclusive dialogue,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity after returning from a visit to the region. AFP
J&K: Day-time relaxations continue; students stay away from schools
Authorities today continued with day-time relaxations across Kashmir, while students stayed away from schools despite the administration's order of the reopening of educational institutions up to the middle classes-level across the Valley.The authorities have lifted restrictions from several areas of Kashmir, including from several parts of the city, officials said. They said barricades were removed from uptown and civil lines areas of the city, but deployment of security forces continued to maintain law and order. However, restrictions continued in some parts especially in the downtown areas of the city here.Most of the schools, especially private-run institutes, wore deserted look as no student turned up to attend the classes even as a few staff members joined duties at some of these institutions, the officials said.PTI
Kashmiris denied accommodation at Delhi OYOs, citing ‘govt order’
Reports of Kashmiris being denied accommodation in hotels and lodgings in Delhi around 15 Aug, on Indian Independence Day, have surfaced.These reports came after the govt’s decision to abrogate Article 370, stripping J&K of its special status, on 5 Aug.Malik Aabid, a student at Jamia Millia Islamia, took to Twitter to narrate an incident where his Kashmiri friend was denied accommodation by OYO after he showed his identification to the receptionist, who allegedly cited an ‘order from the Centre’.“He was supposed to stay with me at my rented accommodation in Jamia Nagar but decided to book a hotel because my flat was shared by a couple of other persons,” Malik Aabid said.Following the complaint, OYO Rooms told publication that they have “initiated an inquiry” into the manager’s actions, which, they added, were based on an “unverified message” circulated to a few hotels.An employee of another OYO affiliate ‘Avatar Hotel’ was also reluctant to take in Kashmiri customers, The Hindu reported. “Beat officers have asked us not to entertain people from Kashmir, Nepal and Bangladesh around 15 Aug,”he said.Other Twitter users have reported similar instances.The Quintu
Abrogation of Art.370 India’s internal matter: Bangla
Bangladesh has said that revoking the special status to J&K is India’s internal matter and maintaining regional peace and stability should be a priority for all countries. Bangladesh’ reaction on the issue came a day after External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar visited the country and held talks with the top leadership, including PM Sheikh Hasina.“Bangladesh maintains that the abrogation of Article 370 by Indian Govt is an internal issue of India,” Ministry of Foreign Affairs said here.PTI
Work to stop water from flowing into Pakistan has started: Govt
Mumbai :Centre has started the process of stopping water from flowing into Pakistan without breaking the Indus Waters Treaty said Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat in Mumbai, adding that the process has already begun to secure the water by building a diversion.“If you are talking about our top priorities, then work has begun on how to stop water that flows into Pakistan. I am talking about the water which is going to Pakistan, I’m not talking about breaking the Indus Treaty,” said Shekhawat. Asked to elaborate, he said, “The water which is excess and going to Pakistan, how can we stop that water? There are some reservoirs and rivers which are outside the catchment area. We will divert that channel so we can use that water in the lean season and monsoon season. Today, all our reservoirs are full but we can use that water (which is going to Pakistan) and divert it to the Ravi river.”indianexpress
US Defence Secretary speaks to Rajnath : Appreciate J&K is internal matter
A day after US President Donald Trump called up PM Narendra Modi, asking India and Pakistan to work towards reducing tensions in Kashmir, US Defence Secretary Mark T Esper spoke to Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and “appreciated India’s position that the recent developments in J&K are an internal matter of India”. This is first time that US has described the current J&K situation as India’s “internal matter”.indianexpress
Kashmir a bilateral issue, resolve through dialogue: Johnson to Modi
New Delhi :During a telephone call with PM Narendra Modi, British Premier Boris Johnson called Kashmir a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan and stressed on the importance of ‘resolving issues through dialogue’, reported PTI.A Downing Street spokesperson said that the phone call, made on Tuesday, was a part of a series of calls undertaken by Johnson to other world leaders since he took charge of the office last month.The spokesperson said, “PM and Modi discussed the current situation in Kashmir…PM (Johnson) made clear that UK views the issue of Kashmir as one for India and Pakistan to resolve bilaterally.He underlined the importance of resolving issues through dialogue.”indianexpress
Modi doesn't deserve UAE's highest civilian award, says British
London:Labour Party parliamentarian Naz Shah has said that Indian PM Narendra Modi is involved in crimes against humanity and does not deserve the highest civilian award that UAE Govt plans to give him.It was reported that UAE would give the Order of Zayed, the highest civilian award of the country, to Modi when he visits the country next week.Writing to Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Labour MP from Bradford said that PM Modi was illegally removing the sovereignty of the Kashmiri people through the forced removal of article 370 and
Incarcerated Kashmir separatists urge public march over loss of autonomy:Reuters
Srinagar:Separatist leaders in Indian Kashmir have urged people to defy a ban and join a mass march after Friday prayers this week, the first such call since the federal Govt revoked the region’s autonomy, stirring anger in the region and beyond.Hundreds of political leaders and activists, many of them separatists seeking Kashmir’s secession from India, have been incarcerated and the appeal to the public came through posters that appeared overnight in the region’s main city of Srinagar. “Every person, young and old, men and women, should march after Friday prayers,”Joint Resistance Leadership, which represents all major separatist groups,said.reuters
Tension Simmering in Jammu: Demand for Statehood, Muslims Fear Exodus
After curfew-like restrictions and internet ban, Jammu was seen limping back to normalcy but the abrupt snapping of internet a second time, has raised certain speculations about the ground situation in Jammu. The administration has said that the step was taken to keep a check on the rumour-mongering but the locals have something else to say.NewsClick spoke to Muslim residents in Jammu who are witnessing a general feeling of uncertainty in the current environment and are fearing an imminent exodus. A young woman, who wished to remain anonymous, said, “There is a lot of fear and rumour on the ground. The other day, a friend of mine told me that this place is no more safe for Muslims. As a Muslim, I have never faced any discrimination in Jammu but these days, divisive politics has come to dominate the minds of the people and it has resulted in fear. My father was telling me, in these times of uncertainty we should plan shifting to Doda. We have a house in Doda, and if things go wrong, our family will take refuge in Doda.”Another boy said, “ I have never felt like this (that it is unsafe) in Jammu. Although nobody is saying anything openly, there is a feeling of uncertainty.”As per a resident, who requested anonymity, VHP and Bajrang Dal have already held a few rallies and were planning to organise more in other areas that would have resulted in communal riots in sensitive Jammu.newsclick
France asks India, Pakistan to resolve Kashmir dispute through political dialogue
France has asked India and Pakistan to resolve the Kashmir dispute through bilateral political dialogue, reported PTI. Calling it a bilateral matter, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said both New Delhi and Islamabad should refrain from taking any step that will escalate tensions.Drian’s remarks came after he and his Pak counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi discussed the situation in Kashmir over phone. According to Pakistan’s Foreign Office, Qureshi expressed hope that France  would play its due role to ensure peace and stability in the region.scroll
Can Pakistan get ICJ to undo India’s decision on J&K’s special status?
On Tuesday,Pakistan decided to approach the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over the recent revocation of J&K’s special status by India. “An in-principle decision has been taken to take the issue of Kashmir to the International Court of Justice,” Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi told Pakistan’s ARY News TV. Firdous Ashiq Awan, information assistant to Pakistan PM, said that the case will be filed based on the “human rights violations” in Kashmir.indianexpress
Remove Priyanka Chopra as Goodwill Ambassador, Pakistan writes to UNICEF
Pakistan human rights ministry has urged UNICEF to remove Priyanka Chopra as UN Goodwill Ambassador for Peace and said Indian actress’ support for “violations by the Modi-led Govt of international conventions on Kashmir” undermines the credibility of world body.“Her jingoism and support for violations by the Modi Govt of international conventions and UNSC resolutions on Kashmir, as well as support for war, including a nuclear war, undermines the credibility of the UN position to which she has elevated,” Pakistan human rights minister Shireen Mazari in a letter to the UNICEF.indianexpress
J&K: Ready to tackle Pakistan in any arena it wants, says India’s envoy to UN
India’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations Syed Akbaruddin on Tuesday said the country was ready to fight Pakistan in any arena of its choice, NDTV reported. He was responding to Pakistan’s comments that it would approach the International Court of Justice against the Modi-led administration’s decision to revoke J&K’s special status. “Every country is entitled to use every course available to them,”Akbaruddin said.“We have different approaches too. If they would like to tackle us in different arenas, we will address it in that arena. This is an arena of their choice. They tried once, but they did not succeed.”scroll
J&K: Police officer and suspected militant killed in Baramulla gunfight
A special police officer and a suspected militant were killed in a gunfight in J&K’s Baramulla district on Tuesday night. A sub-inspector was also injured.On Wednesday morning, the police identified the deceased officer as Bilal and the sub-inspector as Amardeep Parihar. He is undergoing treatment at the Army Hospital at present. The identity of the suspected militant is still being ascertained.This is the first encounter in J&K since the Centre revoked its special status and decided to split it into two Union territories. scroll
CBI books fresh case against NDTV, Roys for violating FDI rules
CBI has registered a fresh case against NDTV Limited, its promoters Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy and others in a FDI related case.Among those accused in the case are then NDTV Chief Executive Officer and Director Vikramaditya Chandra and unknown Income-Tax Department officials.FIR is based on the findings during a preliminary enquiry into the allegations that between May 2004 and May 2010, NDTV floated around 32 subsidiary firms all over the world, “mostly in tax havens viz. Holland,UK,Dubai, Malaysia, Mauritius, etc.”thehindu
Growing Intolerance, Communal Polarisation and Violence Will Damage Our Polity:Manmohan Singh
Former PM Manmohan Singh has said "unpleasant trends" of growing intolerance, communal polarisation, and incidents of violent crimes propelled by hatred of certain groups will damage our polity. Remembering ex PM Rajiv Gandhi on his 75th birth anniversary, he said these trends are repugnant to the promotion of peace, national integration and communal harmony, which are cherished objectives enshrined in our Constitution."All of us need to reflect on how we can contribute to arresting these trends," he said."No religion preaches hatred and intolerance. Vested interests,both external and internal, are inciting and exploiting communal passions and violence to divide India," he said.news18
Hindu Rashtra ideology denies equality and justice to all: N. Ram
Pune :Communalism as a political mobilisation strategy had made “disturbing progress” over the past several years, said N. Ram, Chairman, THG Publishing Private Ltd., on Tuesday, while remarking that ‘Hindu Rashtra’ ideology preached by the powers that be flagrantly denied equality, fairness and justice to all citizens of the country. Ram was delivering the first Dr. Narendra Dabholkar Memorial lecture entitled ‘3 challenges facing contemporary India’ organised here by MANS, which the late rationalist helped to found. “The challenge to secular, democratic, and pluralist India has come to the fore at a time the party of the Hindu Right, led by a RSS pracharak-turned-charismatic mass political-leader, has won a renewed and stronger mandate and is actively consolidating its power at the Centre,” said Ram, remarking that the ruling party has flanking support from a family of militant Hindutva organisations that used to be regarded as belonging to the ‘fringe’.“It is no secret that this new dispensation is armed with an ideology and a socio-political programme that are at odds with what we have been accustomed to for most of India’s independent career. It is important to realise that when RSS supremo proclaims that India is a ‘Hindu nation’ and ‘Hindutva’ is its identity, he is striking a blow at the secular concept of Indian citizenship and at the Constitution itself,” he said.“It does this crudely through spraying anti-Muslim venom into society and, at a more sophisticated level, by advocating the value of ‘positive secularism’,” Ram said, observing that it was “fashionable” today to decry secularism as “a tired, formulaic, hack concept”.He said the law of sedition, and illiberal provisions of IPC like section 153A, and UAPA, and other draconian laws were being invoked in the name of fighting terrorism. “Legitimising Hindutva, pushing the validity of majoritarianism as an imperative of electoral democracy and calling for an authoritarian ‘national unity’ and ‘patriotism’ on this deeply divisive and reactionary basis is what pseudo-nationalism seeks to achieve for the communalists,”said  Ram.Expressing grave concern at the threat to the freedom of the press and the freedom of speech and expression in India today, he said that besides journalists, ordinary citizens too found their fundamental right to freedom of speech and expression diminished and constrained by a climate of fear and intimidation.thehindu
Gujarat govt is enforcing communal segregation and criminalising property transfers
Around one hundred and 80 members of Sardar Kunj, a residential society in the Shahpur neighbourhood in Gujarat’s Ahmedabad city, have been trying to sell their houses for over 2 years now. The only obstacle to the sale is a Gujarat land-transfer law that prohibits the sale of immovable properties in areas designated as “disturbed areas” without concerned district collector’s sanction. The law empowers the state Govt to designate an area as disturbed when it deems it to be impacted by riots and violence. Shahpur, a Muslim-dominated area, is listed as a disturbed area under the law despite not witnessing such incidents since 2002. “Shahpur is a backward area where we don’t have access to facilities like good schools,” Sanjeev Patel, the president of Sardar Kunj’s residents association, said. “It is also a socio-cultural problem as people don’t prefer to have even marriage relations with residents here.”The Disturbed Areas Act was passed to check distress sale of properties—when properties are sold at a rate lower than the market value—in light of recurring communal violence in the state.Act prescribes a lengthy and tedious process to transfer properties. For the collector’s approval, the parties to the sale have to confirm their consent to the registrar, and the local police to examine the area and sanction the transfer. In practice, however, the state has weaponised the law to disincentivise property transactions with Muslims, causing spatial segregation on religious lines. Generally, when property sellers approach the collectors for carrying out transactions with Muslim buyers, Patel said, “permission is denied or the applications are kept pending for months or even over a year.” An official at a sub-registrar office in Ahmedabad confirmed on condition of anonymity that “most cases of pending or delay in approvals are when the buyer happens to be a Muslim.”The state’s agenda of communal segregation became transparent in July this year, after the Gujarat assembly amended the law to give the state more leeway to interfere in property transactions and determine areas with the possibility of communal violence. Discussing the amendment later that month, CM of Gujarat, told ET, “A Hindu selling property to a Muslim is not okay. A Muslim selling property to a Hindu is also not okay.” The Caravan
Muslim daily wager dies in police custody in Junagadh, family claims torture
Hashim Iqbal Khan Pathan, a 28-year-old daily wage earner and resident of Keshod taluka in Junagadh district of Gujarat, would step out of his house every morning to find work that fetched him money to provide for his mother, his only family. However, on August 8, Hashim did not return home like usual. On the day, Junagadh police had arrested him for allegedly being drunk.When no one turned up for bailing Hashim out by the end of the day, he was transferred to Junagadh central jail as he was arrested under Prohibition Act. A day later, he was brought to Junagadh civil hospital unconscious with multiple marks of injuries on his body. The next day, Hashim died in the hospital.“Hashim is survived by his mother, his only family. He was uneducated and earned his livelihood by working as a labourer wherever he was hired for the day. His mother did not know that Hashim was arrested and even if she did, she could not have afforded to bail him out,” Irfan Shah, human rights activist said.newsclick
Allahabad HC Shifts 35 Cases Involving Politicos to Muzzaffarnagar's Special Court                          
Muzaffarnagar: Allahabad High Court has transferred over 35 cases, including 10 of 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots, against various politicians to a special court set up here for speedy disposal of cases against MPs and MLAs, both former and serving ones.According to the district prosecution branch, the politicians against whom cases have been transferred to the district's special court include those belonging to BJP, BSP and Congress. The prosecution officials said the Allahabad High Court on Aug.16 notified Muzaffarnagar's court of additional sessions judge (number 4) as the special court to try cases against former and serving legislators and parliamentarians under its jurisdiction. They said state Minister Suresh Rana, BJP's ex-MP Bhartendu Singh, BJP MLAs Umesh Malik and Vikram Saini, VHP leader Sadhvi Prachi and others are facing charges of inciting violence through their speeches during Muzaffarnagar riots.BJP MLA Vikram Saini and 27 others are also facing an attempt to murder case in the district.Congress leader and former UP home minister S Saiduzzaman, former BSP MP Kadir Rana, former BSP MLA Maulana Jamil are also facing criminal cases for allegedly inciting violence during the 2013 riots in the district.PTI
UP: Adityanath expands Cabinet, Muzaffarnagar riot accused finds place
Lucknow:In the first cabinet reshuffle of Yogi Adityanath-led Govt in UP, 23 ministers took the oath of office on Wednesday, which included both fresh faces as well as promotion for some of the existing ministers. Taking place after two-and-a-half years, the Cabinet expansion was done keeping in mind both regional as well as caste equations, with Brahmin, Chatriya and Vaish finding prominence. Due significance was also given to Varanasi seat, represented by PM Narendra Modi,in the reshuffle. 2 MLAs from Varanasi were promoted — Anil Rajbhar as Cabinet minister and Neelkhand Tiwari as Minister of State  along with the inclusion of Varanasi (North) MLA Ravindra Jaiswal.Interestingly, name of Apna Dal (S) chief Anupriya Patel’s husband Ashish Patel was missing from the list of newly-sworn ministers. Instead, BJP chose its own leaders like Anil Rajbhar to represent Rajbhar community and Ram Shankar Singh Patel from Patel community.6 Cabinet ministers include 4 MLAs who were already serving as Ministers of State with independent charge — Muzaffarnagar riot accused MLA from Thana Bhawan Suresh Rana, Mahendra Singh, Bhupendra Singh Chaudhary and Anil Rajbhar.indianexpress
No Haryana nod for sanction in 2 yrs, trial of right-wing activists yet to start
Hisar: After recent acquittal in Rajasthan of the accused allegedly involved in lynching dairy farmer Pehlu Khan,a similar case in Haryana involving rightwing activists who thrashed a Muslim trader in the premises of Hisar mosque for not chanting ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ seems to be going the same way. The case grabbed national headlines after video of jingoistic assault by right-wing activists on Muslim man went viral in July 2017. However, the trial is yet to start even after 2 years because the Khattar Govt in Haryana is yet to grant sanction for prosecution. Normally, sanction in such cases is granted by the state Govt within 3 months. A letter seeking sanction to prosecute the accused was sent to the state’s home department, which is headed by CM himself, on Aug.19, 2017. However, till date no sanction has been received. Victim, Mohammad Haroon Kasni, said the issue was not related to him alone but concerns freedom of all religions, as such an incident can happen with anybody. Hoshiar Khan, president of Muslim Kalyan Committee Hisar  who has been taking up the matter in court, accused some senior cops in the Hisar district of openly favouring the accused and forcing him to close the matter through compromise. TOI
Karnataka: Muslim man was wrongly portrayed as terrorist, says former minister UT Khader
Mangaluru:Former minister and MLA UT Khader said that Abdul Rouf, a man from Govindooru in Belthangady, was wrongly portrayed as a terrorist and was mentally tortured. Addressing a press conference along with Rouf, Khader said that he will fight for justice in Rouf's case. Referring to a news that a satellite phone call to Pakistan was originated from a village in Belthangady, Khader said, "Rouf, who is an innocent man, is known to me personally.He has been branded as terrorist through the false news. He has no knowledge about satellite calls. Authorities concerned should clarify on spoiling the future of a person, who has been wrongly identified as as a terror suspect.” DCP and SP should issue clarifications in this regard, he said. On Rouf’s personal backgrounds, Khader said, "he had visited my office thrice seeking help while he was constructing a house. He could construct a 1,000 sqft house in Govindooru using the money he received while he was working as a priest in Al-Madina Yathim Khana in Manjanady. However, he could not complete the work of his house. Spreading false information about innocent people will bring bad reputation to the district,” Khader said. Rouf said, society was looking at him with suspicion after he was portrayed as terrorist. TOI
Elgaar Parishad case: Koregaon Inquiry panel plans to examine Dhawale and Gadling in Yerwada jail
Pune :Koregaon Bhima Commission of Inquiry intends to examine Sudhir Dhawale and Surendra Gadling, two of the nine arrested accused in the Elgaar Parishad case, in the first week of September. Both Dhawale, an activist, and Gadling, a lawyer, are currently lodged in Yerwada Central Prison.Dhawale and Gadling had earlier filed affidavits before the Commission of Inquiry, which is looking into the sequence of events that led to the violence in Koregaon Bhima on Jan.1 last year, in which one person died and several others were injured. The panel is headed by retired Justice JN Patel and comprises former state chief secretary Sumit Mullick. Justice Patel has asked advocate Shishir Hiray, lawyer representing the state, to communicate with the prison department in order to set up a ‘temporary court’ on the premises of Yerwada prison for examining Dhawale and Gadling. “As per the directions of the commission, I will be communicating with the prison authorities to set up a temporary court for examining Dhawale and Gadling,” said advocate Hiray. Indianexpress
Uttarakhand: 3 dead after helicopter carrying relief material crashes in Uttarkashi district
3 people were killed after a helicopter carrying relief material to people affected by floods in Uttarakhand’s Uttarkashi district crashed today, ANI reported. The helicopter crashed after it hit a power cable at Moldi.The three deceased were identified as the helicopter’s pilot Kaptal Lal, co-pilot Shailesh and local resident Rajpal. They were travelling from Mori to Moldi. A team of 10 people were sent to the site of the crash.scroll
Pictorial Book on Babri Masjid Unveiled to Counter Falsification of History
New Delhi:A pictorial book on the history of over 400-year old Babri Masjid in English,Urdu and Hindi was released at a function here on Tuesday. The book is published with a view to educate people in general and the generation born after this ancient mosque was razed by Hindutva radicals on Dec.6, 1992, in particular about the factual history about the mosque. Visitors at the launch of the book were unanimous that it is a worthwhile effort to counter the falsehood spread by the Sangh Parivar about the Indian history, particularly the Muslim period and educate the new generation which does not know much about the sequence of events that led to the demolition of the mosque.The book exposes the complicity of the state in the demolition of the mosque, a monumental crime. Due to the false propaganda to hide the crime the title suit the media is now describing the case as a “land” dispute.Noted activist Ravi Nair said it will prove helpful in educating the new generation which does not know the truth about Babri Masjid. Noted lawyer ND Pancholi described the demolition of the masjid as a blot on the face of the country. The book titled “The Story of Babri Masjid”, was published by the Alternate Press, New Delhi.Mohammad Yusuf, an advocate, introduced the book to the audience paid homage to the author of the book, Badr A. Sayeed, who passed away a few months ago.Caravan Daily
Delhi Deputy CM Sisodia urges Urdu writers to promote social harmony
Urdu writers have to pen more literature with the message of preserving and inculcating the sense of communal harmony and patriotism, Delhi Deputy CM Manish Sisodia said. “I appeal (to) Urdu writers to create more and more Urdu literature giving message to the readers to preserve and inculcate the feeling of communal harmony and patriotism. It is writers and thinkers who ensure change and bring inquilab in the society through their creative writings, with the power of their pen,” Sisodia said at Urdu Academy’s award ceremony to felicitate personalities for  their contribution to Urdu literature. Food & Food Supplies minister Imran Hussain, Jamia Millia Islamia ex-V-C Syed Shahid Mehdi and Urdu Academy vice-chairman Shehpar Rasool here attended the event. newindianexpress
US role in Afghanistan has turned into 'ridiculous' police force: Trump
US President Donald Trump has said US military role in Afghanistan has basically turned into a “ridiculous” police force in a sign that he is open to a US troop drawdown there after 18 years of war.Trump was briefed on Friday by top national security aides on a peace plan being negotiated by US envoy Zalmay Khalilzad with leaders of the Afghanistan Govt and the Taliban.“We’re having good discussions. We’ll see what happens. It’s 18 years. We’re not really fighting. We’re almost a police force over there. We’re not supposed to be a police force,” he said.Khalilzad was travelling on Tuesday to resume talks with the Taliban in Doha, “as part of an overall effort to facilitate a peace process that ends the conflict in Afghanistan,” State Department said. Khalilzad will consult with leaders of the Afghan Govt in Kabul and encourage negotiations between the two sides, it said.“But it’s a war that’s been going on almost 19 years and frankly it’s ridiculous. But with that being said, it’s a dangerous place and we have to always keep an eye on it,” Trmup said. Trump said the Taliban would like to stop fighting the Americans but that it is not clear Taliban can be trusted.“The conversations are going well. But in the end, it will be about what’s delivered on the ground, whether that’s from the Afghan Govt, other Afghans that aren’t inside the Afghan Govt, the Taliban,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Tuesday.“The truth will be in the reality. What really happens on the ground? If we can reduce violence, we’ll create a space where we can withdraw not only American support but NATO forces that are there as well,” Pompeo said.Reuters
US envoy returning to Doha for new round of Taliban talks
Yemen separatist chief in Saudi for talks on Aden standoff
Riyadh:The leader of southern Yemeni separatists has arrived in Saudi Arabia for talks aimed at ending a standoff in Aden port between the separatists and Yemen’s Saudi-backed Govt, who had been nominal allies under a Sunni Muslim military coalition.Saudi Arabia, the coalition leader, called for a summit after the separatists on Aug.10 took over Aden, interim seat of the Govt, in a move that fractured the alliance. The ousted Yemeni Govt and coalition partner UAE traded blame over the crisis late on Tuesday.It was not clear if a delayed meeting involving both Yemeni sides would go ahead after the separatists extended their grip on the south on Tuesday by seizing Govt military camps in nearby Abyan.The separatist fighters are part of the Saudi-led alliance that intervened in Yemen in March 2015 against Houthis, who ousted President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi from power in the capital Sanaa. His Govt rebased to Aden.However, UAE-backed separatist Southern Transitional Council (STC) has a rival agenda to Hadi’s Govt, which has refused to participate in any talks unless the southern forces reverse what it calls a coup. STC chief Aidaroos al-Zubaidi arrived in Jeddah late on Tuesday for the talks, the STC said.STC said it would hold Aden until elements of the Islamist Islah, which UAE regards as an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, and northerners are removed from power positions in the south. Reuters
Al-Burhan sworn in as head of Sudan's new ruling body
General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan has been sworn in as chairman of Sudan's newly-formed sovereign council that will steer the country through a 3-year transition to civilian rule. "General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan Abdel Rahman was sworn in as president of the sovereign council," the official SUNA reported.Al-Burhan headed Transitional Military Council (TMC), which ruled the country since Omar al-Bashir was deposed in April. PM-nominee Abdalla Hamdok, as well as the remaining 10 members of the sovereign council, will be sworn in later today.The council includes 6 civilians and 5 soldiers.aljazeera
Russia admits its ground troops are fighting in Idlib
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has acknowledged for the first time the presence of Russian military fighting alongside Syrian regime forces in the Idlib assault, confirming numerous earlier reports.During a press conference he held following a meeting with Ghana’s Foreign Minister Shirley Botchway, Lavrov confirmed that“There are Russian soldiers on the ground in Syrian province of Idlib,” stating that Russia would respond to any attack on its soldiers in Syria.The acknowledgment by Russia of its direct military presence on the ground in the province is the first.middleeastmonitor
Syrians facing forced removal from Istanbul given temporary reprieve
Turkey has extended to Oct.30 its deadline for Syrian migrants not registered in Istanbul to leave the city or face forced removal, Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said.Istanbul’s governor said last month that Syrians who had registered in other provinces of Turkey must return to those provinces by Aug. 20. Number of Syrians in Istanbul, a city of some 15 million, has swelled, with over half a million living in Turkey’s largest city.  Soylu said deadline had been extended until Oct. 30 and that those leaving Istanbul would be allowed to relocate and register in any other province, with the exception of the southern province of Antalya, which he said was also not admitting more Syrian migrants. Students and their families, as well as those with officially registered jobs in Istanbul, would be exempted from the need to relocate, he said.Turkey hosts over 3.6 million Syrians, largest population of Syrians displaced by an eight-year civil war.MEMO
UN postpones anti-torture meet in Cairo after outcry         
UN has postponed an anti-torture conference scheduled to be held next month in Cairo, a decision taken after backlash from rights groups and activists decrying the Egyptian govt's human rights record.UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights had faced criticism after announcing last month that it would co-host the regional event along with Egypt's National Council for Human Rights on Sept. 4-5.aljazeera
Qatar Withdraws Support for China Over Its Treatment of Muslims: Bloomberg
Qatar withdrew its signature from a letter signed by dozens of countries in support of China’s human-rights record despite international condemnation over its detention of as many as 2 million ethnic Muslim Uighurs. Qatar informed UN Human Rights Council chief Coly Seck of its decision to withdraw from the July 12 letter, which was signed by mostly majority-Muslim nations, according to a copy of the correspondence seen by Bloomberg. Several calls and e-mails to Qatar’s Govt communications office and UN mission weren’t returned. “Taking into account our focus on compromise and mediation, we believe that co-authorizing the aforementioned letter would compromise our foreign policy key priorities,”Ali Al-Mansouri, Qatar’s permanent representative to UN, wrote to Seck.
PA: Reports about Israel encouraging Gazans to migrate are dangerous
Palestinian Authority said that Israeli plans to encourage Palestinians in Gaza to migrate are dangerous, Safa news agency reported.“These remarks coincided with threats to launch a wide-scale military campaign in Gaza and Israel bragging that it is making Gaza residents pay a high price,” a statement said.The statement also said that Israeli Govt is fully responsible for the suffering of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip due to the strict siege it has imposed since 2007 and its “violent crimes” against the enclave.In addition, the statement stated that the Israeli siege on Gaza is targeting all aspects of life in the besieged Gaza Strip aiming to put the utmost pressure on Palestinians there to leave their homes.MEMO
Billions of Dollars Spy aircraft Deal between UAE,Israel
A report prepared by law firm “Appleby” and published by Israeli Haaretz revealed that UAE had signed a contract with Israel to get sophisticated spy planes. The report, revealed that work on this secret deal began 10 years ago. The deal amounted to about $3 billion, and Israel was the secret side in it disguised through Israeli businessman, Mate Kochavi. UAE has already received one of those aircraft.According to leaked documents obtained by Haaretz, part of the cost of the deal was already paid in cash. The paper noted that senior UAE officials were linked to the deal.MEMO
Flash: NEWS,views,Articles
Is Abrogation of Reservation on the Cards?Kancha Ilaiah
Data: Is India facing population explosion as the PM claimed?Varun B. Krishnan
Beijing stance at UN against India is a bid to distract from its own troubles in Xinjiang, Hong Kong: Sujan R Chinoy
Because it is LoC that has, ironically, preserved common political space between India and Pakistan:Ameya Kilara
Ground Report: Why Most Kashmiri Children Are Keeping Off School:Kaisar Andrabi
For Kashmir, 'Normalcy' is a Word That Needs to be Abrogated:Syeda Hameed
Trump and Kashmir: If It Sounds Like Mediation, It Is Mediation:Manoj Joshi
The story of ‘normalcy’ in Kashmir: Inside story by Rifat Jawaid from Srinagar:Rifat Jawaid
Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq,(Released at: 8:02 PM)



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