Wednesday, 25 September 2019

25 SEPT. NEWS: UP student who accused Swami Chinmayanand of rape sent to jail in extortion case, bail denied, Cong accuses UP CM of protecting him/Waqf Board rejects Chabutra as birthplace of Ram, says Hindu claim at Babri Masjid site didn't exist before 1865

25 Sept. 2019: 25 Muharram 1441: Vol: 12, No: 22
UP student who accused Swami Chinmayanand of rape sent to jail in extortion case, bail denied
Shahjahanpur:A young law student in UP, allegedly raped by former union minister Swami Chinmayanand for a year, was arrested and jailed today in an extortion case filed by the politician. Her family alleges that the police dragged her out of their home in Shahjahanpur, not allowing her to even put on her slippers.23-year-old has been charged with extortion, criminal intimidation and "disappearance of evidence". Her father alleges he was forced to sign an arrest "memo", a document necessary for police paperwork.Her request for bail was denied by a court. "She has confessed to extortion," said Bharti Singh, an officer of SIT of UP police appointed by the Supreme Court to inquire into student's allegations. "We have enough evidence that Rs.5 crore extortion money was demanded from Chinmayanand,"SIT chief Naveen Arora added.The man she has accused of raping her, 72-year-old Chinmayanand, was arrested on Friday but is not in jail. He has claimed heart ailments and has been in hospital, "under observation",since Sunday.Asked why the police did not request his custodial interrogation, SIT said it was not needed as they didn't need to recover anything from him.BJP, so far silent on its 3-time MP, claimed Chinmayanand was no longer with the party. The woman had accused the police of harassing her and refusing to acknowledge her complaint against Chinmayanand until case drew media attention. Yesterday, she was on her way to court when the police dramatically stopped her car, pulled her out and forced her into their vehicle, as if to arrest her.As chaos erupted and media arrived, the police finally let her go.ndtv
Cong accuses UP CM of protecting Chinmayanand
Congress today came down heavily on the BJP Govt in UP, accusing CM Yogi Adityanath of protecting Chinmayanand who has been accused of rape by a law student.Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi accused BJP Govt of having scored a zero in stopping crime against women in the state and accused it of protecting criminals and intimidating complainants."Even if I have to say this everyday, I will keep saying. BJP Govt in UP is proving to be a ''Zero'' in stopping crime against women. UP BJP tops in suppressing the statistics on crimes against women. In saving criminals and in intimidating complainants," Priyanka said.Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi took a swipe at BJP after the bail plea of the girl, who accused Chinmayanand of rape, was rejected and was sent to jail, saying one must be beware of those who try and make the temple of justice a "circus". Another Congress spokesperson, Rajiv Tyagi, said that a new political cult is emerging in UP where criminals are protected and they turn fearless after getting protection from the Govt.PTI
BJP distances itself from Chinmayanand
Will be great if India-Pakistan work something out on Kashmir: Trump
PM Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump on Tuesday met on the sidelines of UN General Assembly session in New York. Before the meeting, Trump stressed the need for dialogue between India and Pakistan and said that it would be great if the two countries “can work out something on Kashmir”.“I really believe that PM Modi and  PM  Khan will get along when they get to know each other,” Trump told reporters. “I think a lot of good things will come from that meeting... It will be great if they can work out something on Kashmir.” Hours before the meeting, Trump reiterated his offer to mediate in the dispute between India and Pakistan over the revocation of J&K’s special status.scroll
White House says Trump ‘encouraged’ PM Modi to fulfil promise to improve lives of Kashmiri people
Trump's remarks should make indian media think hard about itself: Huffington post
PM Narendra Modi and President Donald Trump have made a great show of their friendship in the past few days.And while Modi kept up his record of not speaking at press conferences on Tuesday night at a joint briefing, it’s Trump’s off-the-cuff comments about the Indian media that strike a more alarming note. When asked repeatedly by Indian media contingent about “Pakistan-sponsored terrorism”, Trump turned to Modi and said, “You have great reporters, I wish I had reporters like this. You are doing better than anybody else. Where do you find these reporters?This is a great thing.” Even at Tuesday’s briefing, Modi kept his thoughts to himself. While Trump dodged most of the questions about his stand on Kashmir, Modi smiled, nodded and smiled more. And none of the questions were even directed to the Indian PM. While India Today celebrated Trump’s “praise” after a question by their reporter (no, it’s not a compliment), Trump said same thing to a Pak reporter a day earlier when he was asked tough questions on Kashmir. In fact, he used the same words to Imran Khan—“where do you find such reporters”—as well.
Imran Khan says he is disappointed with world community for not pressuring India over Kashmir
Pakistan PM Imran Khan has expressed disappointment with the international community for failing to pressure India in the J&K matter. Khan blamed it on India’s appeal as a “market of one billion people”.“To be absolutely frank, I am a bit disappointed by the international community,” Khan told reporters at a press conference at UN. He claimed that the world would have reacted with more urgency had eight million Europeans, Jewish people, or Americans been under siege. “There is no pressure on Narendra Modi to lift the siege,” he said.“We can’t attack India,” Khan said.scroll/HT
Qureshi writes to UN Secretary General, UNSC chief outlining Paksitan’s legal case on J&K issue
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has written to UN Secretary General and President of the UN. Security Council highlighting Pakistan’s legal case on J&K issue. Foreign Office (FO) said today that the letter, along with a detailed fact sheet and comprehensive annexures, highlighted the “illegal, unilateral, coercive” Indian actions of August 5. Qureshi, in his letter to UN chief Antonio Guterres and UNSC President Vasily Nebenzya, said “Indian action is aimed at bringing about a demographic change” in Kashmir. He said “India wanted to preempt UN-administered plebiscite” envisaged under numerous UNSC Resolutions to ascertain the wishes of the Kashmiri people to join Pakistan or India. It said that letter not only builds on Pakistan’s efforts to sensitise the international community about the alleged human rights violations in Kashmir but also presents its comprehensive position on J&K issue.It also contained relevant UNSC resolutions, bilateral deals and letters to UN in a sequential manner, laying out the international law and Pakistan’s legal case on the issue.PTI
Those not proud of Trump calling Modi ‘India’s father’ don’t consider themselves Indians: Minister
Union minister Jitendra Singh today said those who do not feel proud of US President Donald Trump’s comment that PM Narendra Modi is the father of India, do not consider themselves Indians.India is being respected in a way which was rare in the past, Singh said.“People who live abroad are proud today of being Indian. This is happening due to the personality and personal outreach of PM Modi,” said the Minister of State for PMO.PTI
Gates Foundation staffer resigns over award to Modi
New Delhi: Hours before PM Narendra Modi officially received the Gates Foundation’s annual Global Goalkeeper Award for his Swachh Bharat Mission, a staff member at the foundation reportedly resigned in protest. Sabah Hamid, a 42-year-old communications specialist, told TRT World that honouring Modi while he imposed a communications and movement lockdown in Kashmir was a grave error. “Since foundation seemed set on its course of action to go ahead with the award – which as a private foundation it is entitled to – I could do just one thing: leave,” Hamid said.The former employee has said that she took up the matter with her superiors, but “realised very quickly that this was a decision that would not be changed”.Hamid, a Kashmiri, has been with the Gates Foundation for the last 3.5 years. “Being Kashmiri makes it personal. Eight million of my people have been under an undeclared curfew for 50 days now, with minimal access even to medical care, and there is a humanitarian crisis under way in the valley. Modi led Govt has not only designed and implemented this crisis, their untruths and the complicity of a large part of the media means they are also trying to hijack the narrative. Being feted at large international gatherings, and winning awards plays right into that,” she said.thewire
Security forces fully prepared: Rajnath Singh on reactivation of Balakot camp
2 days after Army Chief General Bipin Rawat declared that terror camps in Pakistan’s Balakot were reactivated, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday assured that Indian security forces were fully prepared to meet any eventuality.“Don’t worry, our security forces are fully prepared,” Singh said in Chennai while responding to a query on Army Chief General Bipin Rawat’s statement on reactivation of terror camps in Balakot.indianexpress
Denied entry into ‘Howdy Modi’ due to my comments on PM, says comedian Hasan Minhaj
Comedian Hasan Minhaj today said he was torn apart for being denied entry into PM Narendra Modi’s ‘Howdy Modi’ event in Houston last week. Minhaj said he was told he was denied entry to the event at NSG stadium due to “some of the comments” he had made about the PM, and that he has been “blacklisted”.indianexpress
PM, Amit Shah targets in terror plan, warns intel; Air bases on alert
India is on high alert after intel inputs warning of a terror plan to target PM Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, home ministry sources said today. The ministry has put out an alert to all states following a threat naming 30 major cities. IAF sources have also confirmed a serious security threat to frontline bases following multi-agency inputs. An "orange alert", which is a notch lower than the highest state of emergency, is in place at important installations and security has been tightened on IAF bases in Srinagar, Awantipora, Jammu, Pathankot and Hindon, sources say.According to inputs received by the defence ministry and intelligence agencies, Jaish-e-Mohammad has been plotting a fidayeen or suicide attack on air bases. The inputs include a threat letter dated 10 Sept., received by the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security. The letter in Hindi is reportedly from one Shamsher Wani of Jaish and claims revenge for the Govt's Article 370 decision. ndtv
Pak terror groups use Chinese drones to airdrop 80 kg weapons in Punjab for J&K: HT
New Delhi:At least 8 drone sorties, carrying a total of 80 kg of weapons (arms and ammunition), were sent across the border into Punjab by Pakistan-based Khalistani terror groups between Sept.9 and 16, officials in security agencies and the Punjab Police have confirmed on condition of anonymity. Entire consignment, using the Khalistan Zindabad Force (KZF) network, was supported by Pakistan’s spy agency Inter Services Intelligence and orchestrated through Germany and Lahore; the ultimate aim — to fuel terror attacks in J&K.The details of these drops have emerged following investigations that led to and following the Sept. 22 weapons seizure at Tarn Taran district; the eight payloads were dropped in Amritsar and Tarn Taran.Five people have so far been arrested by Punjab Police in connection with the drone drops, with one 22-year-old Subhdeep held on Tuesday. The investigation involved multiple agencies prima facie found that multiple Chinese commercial drones with 10 kg payloads have been used in the weapons drop operations across the border.
China misread India’s decisions on J&K’s status; External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Wednesday said China had misinterpreted India’s decision to abrogate J&K’s special status and bifurcate it into Union territories, reported ANI. After the August 5 decision of the Centre, Beijing had said that making Ladakh a UT was unacceptable.“I think Chinese misread what was happening there,” said Jaishankar, who is in New York City for a UN summit. “I went a few days after the legislation to China and explained to them that as far as they were concerned, nothing had changed. India’s boundary had not changed, LaC had not changed.”scroll
Govt does not want reality of Kashmir to come out: Yashwant Sinha
Mumbai :Yashwant Sinha has said that Centre did not want the “reality of Kashmir” to come out and it was the duty of all Indians to speak out against the violations of fundamental rights of fellow citizens.“There is a reality of Kashmir that this Govt does not want to come out. This the reason why they are preventing people, including me, from visiting the valley,”Sinha said.He said the fundamental rights and personal freedom of all citizens, including Kashmiris, needed to be guarded and people needed to speak out when these were violated anywhere in India. “Why should we tolerate excesses, which are heaped on our brothers and sisters in any part of the country?” he added.indianexpress
Kashmiri Pandits question govt; say there are 5,000 to 10,000 temples instead of 50,000 vandalised in JK
There are a total of just 5,000 to 7,000 temples across J&K, however, the Govt has reached a figure of 50,000 temples? How, questions the Kashmiri Pandit Sangarsh Samiti. The body representing Kashmiri Pandits living in the valley, who have not migrated after militancy erupted, questioned the figures given by Minister of State for Home Kishan Reddy in a press conference in Bangaluru. Reddy has said around 50,000 temples were closed over the years in J&K, of which some were destroyed, and their idols were defaced. Minister said a survey has been ordered and the temples vandalised in J&K needed restoration."In the entire state of J&K, total number of big and small temples would not be more than 5,000 to 7,000. According to our survey there are a total of 1,842 temples, shamshan bhoomis, holy springs, holy trees and caves in Kashmir Valley," said Sanjay Tickoo president Kashmiri Pandit Sangarsh Samiti (KPSS).IANS

Waqf Board rejects Chabutra as birthplace of Ram, says Hindu claim at Babri Masjid site didn't exist before 1865
On Day 31 of the hearing of Ayodhya-Babri Masjid land title dispute case, Muslim parties asserted that the Hindu claim on the disputed site did not arise before 1865, and the belief that Rama's birthplace was exactly underneath the central dome was as recent as 1989. Muslim side also denied 'accepting' that Ram Chabutra was the birthplace of the deity.Arguing for Sunni Central Wakf Board, senior advocate Zafaryab Jilani told 5-judge Constitution Bench that Board does not accept Ayodhya as the birthplace of the deity, but going by the Hindu belief, Ram Chabutra, a raised platform at least 60 feet away from the main structure was also being worshipped as the birthplace of Rama"Our stance is that it is their belief and we are not taking any steps in that regard after an observation to that effect by a District Judge", Jilani said.Jilani's primary line of argument to puncture the Hindu parties' claim was that the other side could not produce enough evidence to prove that the disputed structure was ever worshipped before the dispute arose sometime in 1865.Jilani relied on gazetteers to buttress the case that there was no worship by Hindus in the disputed structure. He cited another report from 1862 which showed that another temple in the Ramkot Fort had a temple which was worshipped as the janmasthan. He further cited other documented cases of janmasthan worship in Ayodhya and claimed that another place called Ram Chabutra — close to the outer precinct of the disputed site but still 60 feet away from the central dome — is also being worshipped as the place where Lord Rama was born. "This is their (Hindus') belief," said Jilani.The judges, however, confront Jilani with the gazeteers of the pertinent time. "Your Lordships should not pick one or 2 lines from 100s of pages of testimonies but should examine the testimony as a whole", Jilani told the bench.He argued that the belief that the place of birth was below the middle dome was non-existent till 1989. He claimed that none of the suits filed from 1950 to 1989 by Hindu parties make such a claim.To this, Justice Bobde sought to know whether there was any evidence that Hindus tried to worship at the site after the mosque was built but before 1855 and the Muslims opposed it. Jilani replied saying that the Hindus started asserting their right in the outside portion of the structure only around 1865.After Jilani concluded his arguments, Advocate Meenakshi Arora took over and made several submissions regarding the admissibility and/or reliance of ASI report which Allahabad HC relied upon in its now disputed judgment.Bar and Bench/ News18
Valmiki Ramayan, Ram Charitmanas silent on Ram's birth site: Muslim Parties
Ayodhya: Mediation efforts continue as Muslim Forum members meet Mahant Janmejay
Ayodhya:Continuing efforts to solve the Ram Janmabhoomi dispute through mediation, members of the India Muslim Forum (AIMF) on Tuesday met Mahant Janmejay, head of Ram Janmabhoomi Mandir Nirman Nyas, at his ashram in Janaki Ghat in the temple town. Presenting their version before Mahant, AIMF member Aftab Ahmad said the solution should be found in an atmosphere of goodwill. "Ram is venerable across the world," he said."Not only AIMF but most Muslims want Ram's temple in Ayodhya. We must guard against those vested interests who want disharmony between the two communities,"Ahmad said.Ex-UP minister Mueed Ahmad said even if the Supreme Court delivers its verdict in favour of the mosque in Ayodhya, "we would like Ram's temple constructed there". Janmabhoomi's chief priest Acharya Satyendradas, Nirmohi Akhara's Mahant Dinendra Das and Akhara's spokesperson Ranjeetlal Verma welcomed AIMF's stance. IANS
Punjab: Outfits led by ‘Raavan Sena Bharat’ seek complete ban on Raavan effigy burning, defending him as an “intellectual king
Ludhiana: A group of outfits in Punjab led by an organisation called the ‘Raavan Sena Bharat’ have demanded a complete ban on burning effigies of Raavan and his brothers— Meghnath and Kumbhkaran — during Dussehra festivities on Oct.8.Submitting written pleas in this regard to Deputy Commissioners in Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Amritsar, Ferozepur, Kapurthala and other districts, the organisations, while defending Raavan as an “intellectual king”, have said that those burning these effigies should be booked under Section 295-A of IPC.In turn, in Kapurthala and Ferozepur, Hindu groups and Dussehra committees have submitted written pleas to police and the district administration, saying that those opposing burning of Raavan effigies should be booked and it should be ensured that there is no disruption of any kind during festivities.Sensing there could be tension between Hindu outfits and pro-Raavan organisations on Oct.8 in Punjab, police said that they would remain alert. Meanwhile, Lakhbir Lankesh, president, Raavan Sena Bharat, said:“Tell us the logic behind this ritual of burning effigies every year.He has been referred to as ‘Mahatma’ in different versions of Ramayana, because he was an intellectual and a beloved king. He never harmed Sita in any way, but instead kept her in protection of women security guards.” He added that their organisation had over 50,000 followers across Punjab, mostly from the Valmiki community.According to Lankesh, the organisation was also considering moving Punjab and Haryana High Court this week on the issue. “We will be moving High Court seeking ban on this meaningless practice. If logic is that effigies are burnt because Raavan faced defeat from Ram in the battle, then likewise effigy of Ram should also be burnt on Luv-Kush Jayanti because Ram was defeated by his sons,” he said.Darshan Raavan (59) from Ludhiana, chief of Aadi Dharam Samaj, which is an outfit supporting the ban, said: “We want this practice of burning his effigies to be banned. It is illogical.”Professor M Rajivlochan, from the department of history, Panjab University  said: “Raavan was born to Brahmin parents. People in Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka continue to love and worship him…There is a part in Ramayana of both Valmiki and Tulsidas where Ram asks Laxman to go to Raavan and learn from him something about the world which only a learned Brahmin like Raavan can teach…Burning his effigy and that of his brothers actually makes no sense in 21st century….Sharing happiness and worshipping Ram should be enough. It is logical enough to do away with effigy burning practice. It is true he did not harm Sita after abducting her.”indianexpress
Tales of Dalit boycott are not new in Punjab’s villages
Mansa: It was on Sept.5 that motorcyclist Makhan Singh accidentally rammed into 6-year-old Harjot. Son of Rantu Singh, a Dalit member of the Krantikari Mazdoor Union, little Harjot has been in coma ever since. Initially, Makhan, a Jat landowner,helped Harjot’s parents with funds as they took him to Rajindra Medical College, Patiala, and PGIMER,Chandigarh, before finally admitting him to Sangrur Civil Hospital, which is closer home. But in the second week of Sept., Rantu lodged a police complaint against Makhan.Infuriated, the Jat community then made an announcement on the gurdwara public address system asking all landed castes to boycott Dalits. “Don’t get any work done by them…don’t visit their houses,’’ thundered a voice on the microphone.This prompted Dalits, who far outnumber the Jats in the village, to take out a protest under the banner of the Krantikari Mazdoor Union. Subsequently, an FIR was lodged against 6 villagers — all Jat Sikhs. Later however, it was quashed following a “compromise” between the two groups on Sept.17. However, Rantu Singh’s complaint stands.Mansa SSP Narinder Bhargav said the matter had been resolved after the Jats apologised to the Dalits. However, Rantu and many others say the reason for the boycott call is the first fair auction of the village shamlat (common) land. ‘’This year, we got 4 acres of shamlat land reserved for Dalits auctioned to us, unlike in the past when dummy Dalit candidates fielded by landlords would get the land. We were given this land for Rs 70,000 a year against Rs 1.45 lakh last year,’’ says Rantu. 60 Dalit families have pooled in funds to take this land and every family has got around 5 biswa on which they plan to grow green fodder for their animals. “Now we don’t need to beg landlords for fodder. There has been an uneasy calm in the village ever since the auction. Perhaps they found this a good excuse,” says Rantu.indianexpress
MP: Dalit children killed over open defecation, police say killer ‘mentally unstable’
Bhopal: 2 Dalit children were allegedly beaten to death for defecating in the open in a village in Shivpuri district of Madhya Pradesh on Wednesday.The police have arrested two brothers Hakim Yadav and Rameshwar Yadav, who belong to the same Bhavkhedi village under Sirsod Police Station, for beating to death Roshni, 12, and her 10-year-old nephew Avinash. Avinash’s father Manoj Valmiki told the police that the two brothers objected to the children defecating in the open near the panchayat building. He said he does not have a toilet at his home, and alleged that the two brothers had scolded the children in the past too.Manoj, a labourer, said he had an old enmity with the brothers. He said two years ago he had cut the branch of a tree near the agriculture field owned by the Yadav brothers after which they had threatened him with dire consequences.IG  Rajababu Singh, however, said that Hakim is mentally unstable and he killed the two children while they were on way to their grandfather’s home.indianexpress
UN body expresses concern over people including Muslim with disabilities in Assam detention centres
Guwahati: UN Committee on Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) has marked the word ‘Divyangjan’ as controversial and similar to derogatory terminologies such as “mentally ill”. CRPD during its 22nd session from August 26 to Sept.20 in Geneva also expressed concern over “situation of persons with disabilities, including Muslim persons with disabilities, rendered stateless as a result of the registry process undertaken in the State of Assam, and currently in detention camps”.The registry process referred to is NRC whose updated final version was published on August 31. 6 jails in Assam, serving as detention centres, have more than 1,000 declared foreigners but there is no specific data on persons with disabilities among them.CRPD’s concluding observations on the initial report of India mentioned: “Legislation, public policies and practices that discriminate against persons with disabilities in particular guardianship, institutionalisation, psychiatric treatment and segregated community services based on disability, and negative perceptions, including ‘normal life’ as opposed to the lives of persons with disabilities, and derogatory terminology like ‘mentally ill’, or ‘divyangjan’, the latter which is still controversial.”Touching upon Assam’s citizen registry exercise, UN body observed that NRC service centres did not provide barrier-free access to persons with disabilities. It recommended respect and protection of all human rights of “persons with disabilities rendered stateless” by NRC as well as those in the detention camps. CRPD asked India to urgently adopt measures to “allow the reacquisition of nationality”.thehindu
Long queues in Kolkata for birth certificates amid NRC panic
Kolkata: A sudden spurt in demand for birth certificates has caught the Kolkata Municipal Corporation off guard. Used to handing out about 100 birth certificates daily, KMC health department is now receiving over 250 applications per day and officials claim the rush is spurred by the anxiety to get relevant documents in place to prove one’s citizenship in case there is an Assam-like NRC exercise in Bengal in future.The ongoing rhetoric over the National Register of Citizens — with CM Mamata Banerjee repeatedly assuring that there will be no such exercise in Bengal and BJP leaders asserting that it is just a matter of time before NRC is implemented here — has created unease among people in the state, which like neighbouring Assam shares its border with Bangladesh and has served as a refuge for illegal migrants.A health department official at KMC said he has never seen the kind of rush for birth certificates that is being witnessed since Friday. And, it isn’t just young parents who are queueing up; there are scores of middle-aged and senior citizens who are lining up for the certificate. These elderly applicants were born in the 1960s and ’70s when KMC kept just a handwritten record of births and deaths. “People who have spent their lives without birth certificates are suddenly so jittery that they want a document in their hands,” official said.Panic is linked to the convergence of three factors: Union home minister Amit Shah’s scheduled speech on NRC in Kolkata on Oct.1, voter verification programme undertaken by the Election Commission, and the issue of digital ration card by Bengal govt. Sources in the KMC social sector department said the civic body is also gearing up to issue a non-PDS digital ration card to citizens who are above poverty line to be used just as an identity proof.TOI
NRC will be implemented in Bengal, no Hindu will have to leave the country: BJP state  in-charge  Vijayvargiya
Amid repeated assurances by West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee that NRC would not be implemented in the state, BJP state in-charge Kailash Vijayvargiya said the exercise would be carried out in Bengal and no Hindu would have to leave the country.Vijayvargiya’s comments come two days after Mamata Banerjee accused BJP of spreading fear in the state by campaigning on the NRC due to which 6 people had died.On Tuesday, two more persons allegedly committed suicide for failing to procure the requisite certificates to prove their citizenship, taking death toll to 8, PTI reported.Vijayvargiya, without naming the West Bengal CM, said certain political parties and politicians were trying to instil fear among the people over NRC by spreading canards. indianexpress
Mumbai: Witness says Areeb Majeed didn’t say he was leaving country for jihad; declared hostile
Mumbai :A witness in the trial against Areeb Majeed, who is facing trial for allegedly travelling to Iraq and Syria to join IS in 2014, was declared hostile after he claimed that Majeed had never told him about leaving the country for jihad. Witness, who is among those protected by NIA, was Majeed’s classmate and had studied civil engineering together. He told the court that when Majeed, he and others met for group study, they had a “normal talk”. Witness denied that Majeed had told them that he was going to Karbala in Iraq for a religious pilgrimage and that he wanted to go to Iraq for jihad.He also denied that Majeed had told them that he was leaving and that they would meet if he returned alive. He also denied the prosecution’s suggestion that he was lying to protect Majeed, as he is his friend.indianexpress
Kerala: Tension at Piravom church as two Christian factions fight for ownership
Piravom :A tense situation prevailed at St Mary’s Church in Ernakulam district’s Piravom as Orthodox and Jacobite factions of Malankara Syrian Church locked horns over the church’s ownership. The church, currently controlled by the Jacobite faction, was handed over to the Orthodox faction for administration in keeping with the July 3, 2017 verdict of the Supreme Court. The ruling had given control of over 1,100 churches and parishes to the Orthodox faction, which was until then witnessing clashes for ownership between the two factions.Today, when the members of the Orthodox group arrived at the Piravom church to offer prayers and formally take over the administration, Jacobite faction of the members, under the leadership of a few Metropolitan priests, locked the gates and assembled inside, chanting prayers and slogans. Refusing to hand over the church, they stated the ownership could only be settled through reconciliation talks.indianexpress  
Sharad Pawar, Nephew Named In 25,000-Crore Money Laundering Case Ahead Of Maharashtra Election
Veteran political leader Sharad Pawar's name surfaced in a money laundering case being investigated by the Enforcement Directorate, less than a month ahead of the assembly election in Maharashtra.Though Mr Pawar was named in the complaint which was included in the FIR filed by the police in the Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank scam, he was not an accused. But he and his nephew Ajit Pawar have been named in the agency's note on the case. Reacting to the development Sharad Pawar said, "I am not even a member of that organisation, yet my name is there in the FIR.""This type of FIRs during elections will surely impact the results. I have full faith in the judiciary, this is not a new case. We welcome this move by the Govt," Pawar added, while alleging that the notice was issued because of the positive support he has been getting from the people during his pre-election tours.The 25,000-crore bank scam had involved the sanction of illegal bank loans, the agency had said."We are not shocked by this. Before elections, this is what the present Govt has been doing across the country. We are together and we will be fighting against this," Parth Pawar, Ajit Pawar's son, told NDTV. Besides Ajit Pawar, those accused in the case include another NCP leader and senior bank officials. Last week, Sharad Pawar had taken a swipe at Union Minister Amit Shah, after BJP chief targeted him at a rally in Solapur, questioning what his contribution was for Maharashtra.ndtv
'Targeting of Leaders Is Shaking Parliamentary Democracy': Opposition
New Delhi With several opposition leaders being probed for different economic offences, the clamour over whether Modi Govt is (mis)using Central agencies for political gains is growing.The latest to come under scanner is NCP chief Sharad Pawar. In a development that comes weeks ahead of the Maharashtra assembly elections, ED registered a case against him, his nephew Ajit Pawar and several former directors of the Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank (MSCB) in a Rs 25,000 crore money laundering case on Wednesday.While the Maharashtra unit of the BJP did the talking for ED by saying that the agency followed all the rules and procedure, Pawar hit back with a sarcastic comment. He “thanked” the agency for naming him in the case related to the MSCB with which he said he had nothing to do and “was not involved in its decision-making” in any way. He said he would have been surprised had there not been any such action against him ahead of the elections, and added that he was ready to go to jail. Opposition leaders over the last few months have been speaking up against agencies digging up old cases and initiating action against opposition leaders. They believe that the Union Govt is targeting the leaders not just to tarnish their image, but to destroy them politically – an accusation that they claim is unbecoming of a Govt in a parliamentary democracy. CPI(M) leader Hannan Mollah alleged that the Centre is using both “money and threat” to heckle opposition ranks. NCP leader D.P. Tripathi said the ED notice to Pawar is vindictive. CPI general secretary D. Raja said that the Govt “can go to any extent to target opposition leaders, not only to tarnish their image but to finish them politically.”thewire
I want our PM Modi to ensure justice is delivered, says Tabrez Ansari’s wife Shahista
“I want our PM Modi to deliver justice. When he went to America, he showed so much concern for a fallen flower, will he show the same concern to my husband, who was murdered and me? Give me justice Modi,” cried out 19-year-old Shahista Parveen. Her husband Tabrez Ansari was lynched on June 17 and he succumbed to his injuries on June 22. They had barely been married for two months.“Even the mehendi on my palms had not worn away completely when my husband died. Our lives had just started to blossom. We had plans and weren’t they valuable,” asks Shahista, who was in the capital on Wednesday, as a part of IUML protest. It was held to uphold the idea of a terror free India for everybody.nationalheraldindia
Depositors protest as curbs put on Indian co-operative bank: Reuters
RBI move to take charge of one of the country’s top five co-operative banks on Tuesday brought worried depositors out in protest and sparked renewed concerns about the health of India’s troubled banking sector. Depositors of Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative (PMC) Bank were informed they can withdraw only a sum of 1,000 rupees  from their bank account over the next six months, while the bank itself has been put under the direction of RBI and barred from renewing, or granting any loans, or making investments without prior approval of RBI.The sudden move led to protests and long queues outside the bank’s branches. It has 137 branches that are spread across seven states in India.“My money is gone now,” said Ashok Mahto who stood outside a bank branch in Santacruz, Mumbai, convinced that 65,000 rupees that had taken him 6 months to accumulate had been lost forever.
India’s stuttering economy hits global oil demand
India’s oil consumption is growing well below its long-term trend as the country struggles with a widespread economic slowdown, including a slump in new vehicle sales. The slowdown is part of a worldwide economic deceleration, which is weighing heavily on the motor industry. But because India has been so important for growth in oil demand over last 2 decades,its downturn is materially shifting oil’s global production-consumption balance and weighing on prices. India’s slowdown threatens to trim at least 100,000 barrels per day from global consumption growth in 2019, helping push world growth down to 1 million bpd or less this year.Reuters
Modi's big tax cut unlikely to spur job bonanza in India: Reuters
Mukesh Ambani richest Indian with net worth of Rs 3,80,700 crore
Reliance Industries’ Chairman Mukesh Ambani has topped the list of richest Indians for the eighth consecutive year, with a net worth of ₹3,80,700 crore, according to the latest IIFL Wealth-Hurun India Rich List. London-based S.P. Hinduja & family, with assets worth ₹1,86,500 crore, retained the second rank in the list, followed by Wipro founder Azim Premji with wealth of ₹1,17,100 crore.According to the latest IIFL Wealth-Hurun India Rich List, the number of Indians having a net worth of more than ₹1,000 crore has grown to 953 this year from 831 in 2018, while, the number of billionaires in terms of U.S. dollar has reduced to 138 from 141.L. N. Mittal, chairman and CEO of ArcelorMittal, was the fourth richest with wealth of ₹1,07,300 crore and Gautam Adani was placed in the fifth position with a net worth of ₹94,500 crore.Others in the top 10 include Uday Kotak at the 6th place (₹94,100 crore), Cyrus S. Poonawalla at 7th position (₹88,800 crore), Cyrus Pallonji Mistry at 8th spot (₹76,800 crore), Shapoor Pallonji at 9th position (₹76,800 crore) and Dilip Shanghvi at 10th slot (Rs 71,500-crore).PTI
Iran ready to accept deal changes if US lifts sanctions
Iran is willing to give reassurances on not seeking nuclear arms and will accept changes to its 2015 nuclear accord with world powers if US returns to the deal and lifts sanctions, a Govt spokesman said."If the sanctions are ended and there is a return to [nuclear] accord, there is room for giving reassurances towards breaking the deadlock and the President Hassan Rouhani has even a proposal for small changes in the accord," spokesman, Ali Rabiei, told state TV. The possibility a meeting between Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and US President Donald Trump is "zero" and US should lift sanctions and return to the 2015 nuclear deal if it wants to talk, an Iran's foreign minister said. Speaking ahead of a ministerial meeting of the remaining parties to the nuclear deal, Mohammad Javad Zarif told Reuters: "Diplomacy is the only way to resolve issues... this meeting gives us an opportunity to review where we are." Iran's defence minister has rejected any deal with world powers over Tehran's missile program.The official IRNA news agency quoted General Amir Hatami as saying any deal with US over Iran's "missile power" would damage the country's capabilities. He said Iran's leaders all support improving their missile programme.Tehran long has insisted its ballistic missile programme was non-negotiable. Trump, however, cited it as a reason for unilaterally withdrawing US from the nuclear deal over a year ago.aljazeera
Palestinian factions slam Joint List over support for Gantz
Hamas and Popular Front for Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) strongly criticised Israeli political party Joint List, which is made up predominantly of Arab ministers, after they backed former chief of staff of the Israeli army Benny Gantz to head the country’s next Govt.In a statement, Hamas spokesman Hazim Qasim described their support for Gantz as “grotesque”.Qasim said: “The programme of this Israeli party is based on its disregard of the Palestinian people’s rights and even it incites against Gaza and calls for the annexation of the West Bank.”Meanwhile, the PFLP called for the members of the Joint List to “re-evaluate” their recommendation for this “war criminal” based on his “criminal past”. middleeastmonitor
Hamas official: No difference between Gantz, Netanyahu
Doha:, Senior Hamas leader Mousa Abu Marzouk discussed his organisation's reaction to Israeli election and its potential impact on the occupied Palestinian territories. In a interview with Al Jazeera, he also discussed Hamas' relations with Egypt and the ongoing weekly protests at the demarcations with Israel. Abu Marzouk who now heads its international relations and political guidance department - spoke about US President Donald Trump "peace plan" for Middle East. On Israeli polls, he said, "To start with we should know that the Israeli society is clearly shifting to the right since the mid-1990s. This election is no exception. Nationalist and extreme right-wing Jews, in general, believe in greater Israel that expands beyond the borders of historic Palestine. They also don't believe in the Oslo accords or the two-state solution as stipulated in the signed accords with PLO in 1993. That said, however, I must admit that Israeli society practices Western democracy, even though Israel is in and of itself is not a democratic country." He added, "2014 war against Gaza that killed over 2,000 Palestinians was led by none other than Benny Gantz, so that tells us who the man is. Moreover, we are a resistance movement, which means the only form of contact between me and my enemy is resistance in nature. We don't differentiate between either Gantz or Netanyahu."aljazeera
Reports: Gantz open to rotation agreement in coalition with Netanyahu
Reports in Israeli media suggested that Blue and White chair Benny Gantz is open to a coalition Govt with PM Benjamin Netanyahu, while Likud negotiators work on sweetening such a deal.According to right-wing news outlet Arutz Sheva, citing a Channel 13, Likud “has made a far-reaching proposal” aimed at placating Blue and White (Kahol Lavan) members. The proposal, reportedly tabled at both Netanyahu and Gantz’s meeting on Monday and their respective negotiating teams’ meeting yesterday, would see Blue and White “waive the requirement to be PM first”.In return, however, they will receive an “extended term” of up to three years, while Netanyahu, who will serve first as PM, could settle for a short term of just one year.middleeastmonitor
Israel arrests Palestine's Jerusalem Minister al-Hadami
Israeli police said they have arrested Jerusalem Affairs Minister Fadi al-Hadami of the Palestinian Authority (PA) - a move Palestinians said was "routine" and part of a "harassment campaign".Jerusalem Affairs Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday that Israeli forces raided the minister's home before taking al-Hadami into custody.Israeli police say he was arrested for conducting political activity in occupied East Jerusalem, according to AP.Al-Hadami is charged with allegedly breaking a law prohibiting political activity by the PA in Jerusalem. The PA governs the occupied West Bank."He is being questioned by officers from the Jerusalem police district," Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld, told Al Jazeera, without giving further information.aljazeera
Egypt arrests 965 anti-Sisi protesters
Some 964 Egyptians have been arrested during protests calling for the country’s President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi to step down which began on Friday.Figures released by the Egyptian Centre for Economic and Social Rights reveal the extent of the Govt crackdown on demonstrators who have been angered by revelations that Al-Sisi has been building palaces while civilians are starving and suffering from increased living costs, reduced Govt subsidies, and rising taxes.middleeastmonitor
Ex-Sami Anan aide arrested in Egypt
Egypt Govt claims 6 Muslim Brotherhood members killed in shootout
Cairo: 6 Muslim Brotherhood members have been killed in a shootout with Egyptian police on the outskirts of Cairo, the interior ministry said Tuesday.In a brief statement, the ministry said police exchanged fire with the "terrorist" group in 6 October City, on the southwestern edge of capital, accusing it of "planning a series of terror operations".The announcement comes after rare protests against President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi broke out in several Egyptian cities on Friday and Saturday, with state media accusing the Muslim Brotherhood of influencing the protesters.After the 2013 military overthrow of elected Brotherhood president Mohamed Morsi. An ongoing wide-scale crackdown has jailed thousands of Islamists and the authorities regularly raid and kill armed affiliates of the banned group.AFP
Amnesty: World leaders should stop Sisi’s repressive crackdown
Human rights watchdog Amnesty International has called on world leaders to act to stop Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s repressive crackdown on protesters.Over the past week, Egyptians have heeded a call made by the exiled, former army contractor Mohamed Ali to take to the streets and call on the general to stand down. In a series of videos detailing his work with the armed forces which went viral, Ali confirmed that the Govt and the military are squandering millions of pounds of public money on vanity projects as they roll out severe austerity measures in the country.Al-Sisi has blamed the protests on “political Islam” and cast them as “lies” and “slander”. He has blocked the BBC for reporting on what is happening in the country.middleeastmonitor
Earthquake in Pak, PoK: Toll rises to 37, over 450 injured
The toll in Tuesday’s earthquake that struck northern Pakistan and occupied Kashmir rose to 37 today, Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Authority Chairman Lieutenant General Afzal told Express Tribune. The toll may rise as close to 160 people are said to be in a critical condition.At least 452 people have been injured in Pakistan, PTI reported. The worst hit city is Mirpur in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, where 24 people lost their lives. Nine were killed in Jatlan and one in Jhelum.scroll
Former Afghan President Karzai: Election threatens peace prospect
Afghanistan's election on Saturday threatens the war-torn nation's best chance of achieving peace with the Taliban and it should be scrapped, former Afghan President Hamid Karzai has said.Holding the vote now "is like asking a heart patient to run a marathon" as it could ignite Taliban attacks that will seriously destabilise the country, Karzai told the Associated Press news agency on Tuesday.The former president, still considered one of the most important people in Afghan politics, has pressed for a resumption of US-Taliban talks, which collapsed earlier this month after US President Donald Trump said a deal that seemed imminent was "dead"."This is no time for elections," he said. "We cannot conduct elections in a country that is going through a foreign-imposed conflict. We are in a war of foreign objectives and interests. It isn't our conflict - we are only dying in it." aljazeera
Afghanistan's Taliban lifts ban on WHO
Afghanistan’s Taliban has lifted a ban on World Health Organization activities in areas the militants control, a spokesman for the Islamist group said, reversing a stance that had been complicating efforts to eradicate polio. The Taliban had in April banned WHO and International Committee of the Red Cross, citing their “suspicious activities” during vaccination campaigns, which threatened to deepen one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises“After realising its shortcomings and following constant contact and meetings with our representatives, WHO received permission for their activities,” said Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the Taliban in a statement..Reuters
Algeria: Bouteflika's brother sentenced to 15 years in prison
A military court in Algeria has sentenced the brother of former President Abdulaziz Bouteflika to 15 years in prison for plotting against the state and undermining the army, according to state media.Three other co-defendants - two former intelligence chiefs and the head of a political party - were given the same sentence, APS reported on Tuesday.Said Bouteflika was widely seen as the real power behind the presidency after his brother suffered a debilitating stroke in 2013. Presidential elections have now been set for Dec.12, but protesters have kept up demands for political reforms and the removal of the former president's loyalists, including Gaid Salah, who has emerged as a key powerbroker since Bouteflika's fall.aljazeera
Muslim Americans testify on effects of Trump's travel ban
Washington, DC - Speaking before a US congressional panel on Tuesday, Ismail Alghazali, a Yemeni American, described how President Donald Trump's travel ban has prevented his Yemeni wife and two small children from joining him in the US."I have never even met my daughter. I have never held her in my arms. I've only seen her through photos and videos," Alghazali, 26, told a joint hearing of House Judiciary and Oversight subcommittees. Alghazali came to the US as a child in 2000 and makes a living from his job at a bodega in New York City. He said his wife should have been eligible for a waiver to the ban, but after what he said was a five-minute meeting with a consular officer, her visa was denied. Now, his young family is stuck in war-torn Yemen.For the first time, Muslim Americans had an opportunity to testify before a congressional hearing in the US House of Representatives on the effects of Trump's travel ban, which targeted several Muslim-majority countries. The ban at present applies to people coming from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Yemen and North Korea, as well as to Govt officials from Venezuela.aljazeera
Seven children among 16 dead in Yemen air strikes
Air strikes by the Saudi-Emirati-led coalition fighting rebels in southern Yemen killed 16 civilians on Tuesday, including women and children.The deadly strikes came four days after the Houthi rebels said they would stop missile and drone attacks on Saudi Arabia - if the military alliance targeting Yemen does the same - after the militia that controls most of the country claimed responsibility for a brazen attack on oil facilities in the kingdom.aljazeera
Rohingya face genocide in Myanmar: Malaysian PM
 Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamad slammed Myanmar for failing to resolve the Rohingya crisis.Mahathir spoke at the high-level side event "Rohingya Crisis - A Way Forward" at the UN HQ ."What happened in [Myanmar's northern ]Rakhine state is genocide. What took place were mass killings, systematic rape and other gross violations of human rights,” he said.He stressed that the Myanmar Govt was unwilling to take any action to resolve the crisis.Mahathir said this resulted in the Rohingya fleeing the country en masse, with most of them ending up in refugee camps in Cox’s Bazar district of Bangladesh."We commend Bangladesh for all it has done in hosting more than 1.2 million Rohingya refugees," he said.Anadolu Agency

Rise in sea levels, ice melting at faster pace: New UN climate report warns
Earth’s oceans are under severe strain from climate change, a major new United Nations report warns, threatening everything from the ability to harvest seafood to the well-being of hundreds of millions of people living along the coasts.Rising temperatures are contributing to a drop in fish populations in many regions, and oxygen levels in the ocean are declining while acidity levels are on the rise, posing risks to important marine ecosystems, according to the report issued Wednesday by the InterGovtal Panel on Climate Change, a group of scientists convened by the UN to guide world leaders in policymaking.In addition, warmer ocean waters, when combined with rising sea levels, threaten to fuel ever more powerful tropical cyclones and floods, the report said, further imperiling coastal regions and worsening a phenomenon that is already contributing to storms like Hurricane Harvey, which devastated Houston two years ago.New York Times

Flash: NEWS,views,Articles
NGOs and the Govt: site of tussle:Editorial , Telegraph INDIA
Modi govt's major outreach to minorities: 80% resources for education, health, skill development; 33-40% for women-centric projects:Yatish Yadav
Fifty days on— zero body count can’t be an index of normalcy in J&K: indian express Editorial
The change of guard in Israel has implications beyond Jerusalem:K C Tyagi
Bank mergers don’t address crux of crisis: The nexus between lenders, borrowers and election funding:Christophe Jaffrelot
Amid Shutdown, a Private News Channel Connects Thousands in J&K:Majid Maqbool
Hours After a Late-Night Knock, an Entire Neighbourhood Reduced to Pellet Injuries:Kaisar Andrabi
Crackdown on lawyers narrows road to justice in Kashmir: Menaka Rao   & Anumeha Yadav , aljazeera
Is RSS going to disown many of its members?Suprakash Majumdar
Why The Kashmir Blackout Could Backfire On Modi Govt, Expert Explains: Rohit Inani
India denies trade deal talks with US failed, both countries say agreement expected very soon
IAS officer who quit over J&K curbs ‘stopped’ from visiting SPPU’s Jaykar library
Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq,(Released at: 8:09 PM)



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