09 October 2019

9 OCT. NEWS : Ahead of India visit, Chinese Prez puts Kashmir back on the table, to support Pakistan on core issues; India says it is not for other countries to comment:/ Nationwide NRC: Centre has to set common cut-off date/ Babri Masjid case: Muslims side turns down mediation feeler

09 OCT. 2019: 09 Safar 1441: Vol: 12, No: 32
INDIA: J&K ISSUE & s.asia  
Ahead of India visit, Chinese Prez puts Kashmir back on the table, to support Pakistan on core issues
China has yet another time taken a stand on Kashmir issue, this time calling it an internal matter between India and Pakistan. The country has so far been maintaining its support for Pakistan as recently it asserted that Fundamental rights of Kashmiris should not be suppressed and categorically extended support to the country. In a diplomatic twist, China on Tuesday suggested both New Delhi and Islamabad resolve the Kashmir issue amicably. The statement came days ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to India. Now in another statement, China has said it was keeping an eye on the developments on Kashmir issue and would back Pakistan on issues related to its core interest. Xinhua reported that President Xi has told Pakistan PM Imran Khan that right and wrong of the situation in Kashmir was evident and that both India and Pakistan should resolve the issues via dialogue. Chinese President is scheduled to meet PM Narendra Modi for a 2-day informal summit in Chennai where 2 leaders would discuss issues of regional and bilateral significance. On Tuesday, China also invited Imran Khan with Premier Li Keqiang assuring Khan that the country would support Pakistan in protecting its sovereignty and territorial integrity.Earlier China, which is Pakistan’s all-weather friend, had asserted that both India and Pakistan should resort to diplomacy to resolve escalating tensions in the wake of J&K’s special status suspension. newsx
Xi Jinping says he is watching Kashmir, supports Pakistan’s core interests: Chinese media
‘Not for others to comment’: India’s blunt reaction to Imran-Xi talking Kashmir
New Delhi:Hours after Chinese President Xi Jinping said he was watching the situation in Kashmir and would support Pakistan in issues related to its core interests, India said it is not for other countries to comment on the internal affairs of India. Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said,“We have seen the report regarding meeting of Chinese President Xi Jinping with PM Imran Khan which also refers to their discussions on Kashmir. India’s position has been consistent and clear that J&K is an integral part of India. China is well aware of our position. It is not for other countries to comment on internal affairs of India.”HT
MEA confirms: Xi Jinping to visit Chennai for 2nd Indo-China informal summit
New Delhi :Confirming second informal summit between India and China, Chinese President Xi Jinping will visit Chennai from Oct.11-12.During his visit, both the leaders are expected to hold comprehensive talks on a host of issues concerning the bilateral relations and exchange views on regional and international issues.indianexpress
Modi-Xi summit: China says India didn’t hold military drill in Arunachal
China is not worried about India holding a large-scale military exercise in the “disputed eastern sector” as it hasn’t taken place, a top Chinese diplomat said in Beijing after formally announcing President Xi Jinping’s visit to India.When asked by Chinese media whether China was concerned that the military exercises in the “disputed eastern sector” could impact the atmosphere of the summit, vice-foreign minister Luo Zhaohui said, “We have no worry at all because that is not true.”HT
132 IITians write to centre against 'brutalisation' of Kashmiris
In the 2 months that have passed since Kashmir was put under a virtual lockdown, its special status taken and many of the freedoms of its people curtailed with, several  groups of citizens have written petitions, letters and heartfelt requests to the Govt, asking for a let up in the gross human rights violations there.Now, as many as 132 alumni, teachers and students of the several Indian Institutes of Technology across the country have written to Govt against sustained ‘brutalisation’ of Kashmiris.“8 million people of the Kashmir valley have been under lockdown for over 2 months now. Mobile phones and net services have been shut down, and hardly any news is allowed to escape from valley.The mainstream Indian media has been repeating the statements handed out by Indian Govt, and the information blackout is almost total. International media, on the other hand, has covered protests as well as recorded violence over last 2 months. Reports of mass arrests, tortures and encounters have also filtered through,”petition reads.the wire
Disturbed by restrictions on communications in Kashmir: Top US Senator
Powerful Democratic Senator Mark Warner, who is co-chair of the Senate India Caucus, has said that he is "disturbed by restrictions" on communications and movement of people in J&K and asked Govt to live up to democratic principles by allowing freedom of press, information and political participation."While I understand India has legitimate security concerns, I am disturbed by its restrictions on communications and movement within J&K," Warner tweeted."I hope India will live up to its democratic principles by allowing freedom of press, information, and political participation," said top Democratic Senator, who has joined his other Senate colleagues from the Democratic party in calling India to lift restrictions.His statement is significant because he has been one of the best friends of India inside and outside the Senate.PTI
Some UN Agency Personnel in India Able to Operate in Kashmir: UN chief Spokesperson
UN: Expressing concern over the situation in Kashmir, a spokesperson for UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has said that some of UN agency personnel in India are able to operate in Kashmir.We're obviously concerned and continue to be concerned about the situation in Kashmir. My understanding is that some of our humanitarian UN agency colleagues in India are able to operate there, spokesperson for the UN Chief, Stephane Dujarric said on Tuesday. He did not give details of UN agencies in Kashmir and said the details would be made available later.PTI / IANS
65 days after lockdown, officials in Valley caution: Don’t call this ‘normal’
Srinagar : More than 60 days into the lockdown in the Valley, many officials on the ground, both in the civilian and security establishment, have begun to say that the political imperative, from New Delhi, to sustain an “everything-is-normal” narrative is turning out to be challenging — and could even be counterproductive. Internet and cellphones are still down, the disruption caused by these touches virtually all aspects of life — from seeking health care to connecting with friends and family; schools and colleges are shut; hundreds are in detention; and although yesterday Governor’s office withdrew the order restricting tourists, hardly any are visiting the Valley.All parties, barring BJP, Tuesday announced they will not contest Oct.24 Block Development Council (BDC) elections which the state announced late last month.“We used to say that security forces watch the clock while militants have all the time but now it’s the other way around. It seems Govt’s strategy is that it has all time while residents in J&K can keep a watch on the clock,” said an officer. “We aren’t sure how effective this tire-them-down approach will be but what we are sure of is that this is not normalcy and all of us need to accept that.” indianexpress
Congress to boycott local polls in J&K; PDP, NC also iffy
Congress has decided to boycott the upcoming Block Development Council (BDC) elections which will be held in J&K, reports ANI.Pradesh Congress Committee chief spokesperson Ravinder Sharma had earlier said that there was no cooperation from Govt even after his party expressed its willingness to participate in the polls despite strong reservations about the conduciveness of the situation in the state.“The party is taking a fresh review of overall scenario with regard to BDC elections in the wake of continued restrictions on the majority of senior party leaders in the entire Kashmir Valley,” he said. With all top notch leaders of the Valley, including former CMs Omar and Farooq Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, in detention, 2 main regional parties National Conference, PDP have already expressed reservations over participating in BDC polls. HT
Shehla Rashid quits electoral politics, says she can't legitimise suppression of Kashmiris
Reacting strongly to the Centre’s decision to hold Block Development Council (BDC) elections in J&K even while large parts of the Valley remain under a communications and movement blockade, Shehla Rashid has said that she is disassociating from electoral politics because of the Centre’s disregard for Indian laws when it comes to Kashmir.Rashid had joined J&K People’s Party, launched by ex IAS officer Shah Faesal, in March this year. However, she now says, “It is clear that participation in any political activity in Kashmir requires a compromise.” Her statement adds that she will continue her work as an activist, but cannot in good faith continue to engage in mainstream politics. thewire
Cabinet approves Rs 5.5 lakh package for PoK families who initially settled outside J&K
Union Cabinet today approved a one-time payment of Rs 5.5 lakh as a resettlement package for 5,300 displaced families who had come from PoK and initially settled outside J&K but later relocated to the state.A “historical wrong” has been corrected by Govt, Union minister Prakash Javadekar said while briefing reporters after the Cabinet meeting.In 2016, PM Narendra Modi had announced the resettlement package for those PoK families who had settled in J&K after partition on separate occasions.PTI
Nationwide NRC: Centre has to set common cut-off date
Before Centre rolls out a plan to compile a countrywide NRC on the lines of the document compiled in Assam, it will have to decide a common cut-off date, a senior Govt official said. Home Minister Amit Shah reiterated his stand on a wider NRC exercise a few days ago in Kolkata when he said “all infiltrators will be thrown out” while assuring 6 non-Muslim communities from neighbouring Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan that “BJP Govt will bring the Citizenship Amendment Bill before NRC.” The Bill seeks to provide citizenship to Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsis and Christians from 3 neighbouring countries.The official said that under Article 6 of the Constitution, the cut-off date for migration to India from Pakistan is July 19, 1948. “There are other provisions like citizenship by birth and naturalisation as per Citizenship Act, 1955. Several States are demanding NRC but States are competent enough to detect and deport foreign nationals,” said the official. In Assam, the cut-off date for inclusion in the updated NRC is March 25, 1971, as spelt out in Assam Accord. Assam NRC was monitored by the Supreme Court. According to V-C of NALSAR, Hyderabad, Faizan Mustafa, the date to acquire Indian citizenship for those who migrated from Pakistan is 1948 only. They become citizens automatically and those who came after that date, need a registration. “First, the constitutionality of cut-off date should be determined. If tomorrow, the SC that is examining the NRC, says that the cut-off date for Assam should be 1948 and not 1971, then the entire exercise will be futile,” Mustafa said. A civil society group, Tripura People’s Front, filed a petition in the SC in Oct.2018 seeking an NRC exercise in the State by taking July 19, 1948 as cut-off date.Nagaland has also proposed compiling a register of indigenous Naga inhabitants to “safeguard the State from outsiders.”thehindu
For the 19,06,657 excluded, now a legal aid App to help contest NRC list
Guwahati: Ahead of the 19 lakh people contesting their exclusion from NRC in Foreigners’ Tribunals, a mobile application developed by a journalist-lawyer duo was launched to help those seeking legal assistance. On Oct. 1, NRC eHandbook, an Android app was launched to aid lawyers and paralegals who will be filing appeals for NRC-excluded in Foreigners’ Tribunals.“Not just lawyers, but our app — which is a repository of all kinds of documentation related to the NRC — will also be of use to anyone, be it a journalist or a researcher, who wants to understand the NRC process,” says Shakil Ahmed, a Guwahati-based freelance journalist  who developed the app, along with advocate Mustafa Khaddam Hussain. While 5 National Law Schools have collaborated to provide legal assistance to those left out of the NRC through a platform called Parichay, the state Govt has also announced that District Legal Services Authorities  will be providing free legal aid to the needy. “When NRC authorities announce what the next step in the appeal process is, our app will guide people on how to proceed,”says Ahmed, who has a degree in Computer Science. The app, which was developed along with advocate Hussain, legal advisor of All Assam Minority Students’ Union, is divided into different sections: SOPs and Modalities, Official Advertisements, Acts and Rules, Gauhati High Court and Supreme Court Judgments, Communication and Letters, Relevant Documents, Upcoming Updates and Feedback.indianexpress
You will be thrown out before next general election: Amit Shah's NRC warning to 'infiltrators'
Union Home Minister and BJP chief Amit Shah on Wednesday said that the infiltrators would be made to leave the country before the next general elections and National Register of Citizens will be implemented for the purpose."Before we come to ask for votes in 2024 (general elections), let me assure you BJP Govt will make sure every infiltrator is thrown out of the country, Shah said addressing an election rally here.He said the infiltrators have been entering the country for decades and leading to questions on national security.dnaindia
Global economy in synchronised slowdown, effects more pronounced in India: IMF Chief
The new head of IMF has said that the global economy was experiencing a “synchronised slowdown” with nearly 90 % of the world witnessing slower growth in 2019. IMF MD Kristalina Georgieva said the slowdown was “more pronounced” in some of the largest emerging economies, including India and Brazil.“In 2019, we expect slower growth in nearly 90 % of the world. The global economy is now in a synchronised slowdown. This means that growth this year will fall to its lowest rate since the beginning of the decade,” Georgieva, who took over as Managing Director of the body on Oct. 1, said.“In some of the largest emerging market economies, such as India and Brazil, the slowdown is even more pronounced this year,” she added.Georgieva attributed the slowdown to a range of uncertainties — she called them “fractures” — including trade tensions, Brexit and geopolitical tensions.indianexpress
No recession, no need for too much discussion:  Bhagwat on Indian economy
“Too much discussion” about the “so-called” economic slowdown is unwarranted as it makes businesses and people wary and leads to decline in economic activity, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat said here.The Govt was taking measures to improve the situation, and we must have faith in it, Bhagwat said, addressing a gathering of the RSS on the occasion of Vijayadashmi.PTI
Finance Ministry planning to close down BSNL, MTNL
After rejecting the proposal of department of telecommunication to revive the ailing BSNL and MTNL by pumping in ₹74,000 crores, the finance ministry has suggested closure of both PSUs.According to Financial Express, the closure of the 2 PSUs won’t cost as high as ₹95,000 crore as argued by DoT. ₹95,000 crores revival package would have been used to provide voluntary retirement scheme to all 1.5 Lakh BSNL employees and to repay the debts.In the case of closure, Indian Telecommunication Service (ITS) officers do not have to opt for VRS as they can be shifted to other Govtal departments. Employees who have been directly employed by the company are mostly junior staff and technicians whose salaries are not very high, and their total strength is not over 10%. It is the absorbed staff who are going to be the get most affected. They need to be compulsorily retired.nationalheraldindia
Govt increases Dearness Allowance by 5% for central employees, pensioners
Govt, today, announced the highest ever 5% points increase in dearness allowance (DA) which will bring cheers to 50 lakh central employees and 65 lakh pensioners ahead of Diwali. Union Cabinet chaired by PM Narendra Modi approved 5% additional DA/DR (dearness relief) over the existing rate of 12% of the basic pay/pension due in July, 2019, it said.PTI
Bhopal gas tragedy survivors left in the lurch as aid funds dry up
Bhopal:With a surging set of appeals for ex gratia for injuries and disabilities, Bhopal gas tragedy survivors have been left in the lurch as the Centre may soon run out of funds to pay them compensation. It is yet to work out a plan to secure ₹61.72 crore for 3,629 cases pending approval. Appellate Court here is continuing to hear appeals, but there is a hold for now on granting final approval by the Union Ministry of Chemical and Fertilizers, says a letter issued by the Ministry in Feb. The Welfare Commissioner’s office here, that functions under the Centre, in July 2018 had sent to the Centre a proposal for the sanction of additional 3,629 cases, which are now pending for more than a year, with more number of cases mounting since.thehindu
Babri Masjid case: Muslims side turns down mediation feeler
New Delhi :Days after Ramlalla Virajman, one of the 3 main parties to Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title suit, told the Supreme Court that they would not participate in the mediation process, the side for the mosque has also turned down an invitation by the SC-appointed mediators. After CS Vaidyanathan, advocate for Ramlalla Virajman, told the court on Sept.30 that they “were not participating” in the mediation, the mediators wrote a letter on Oct.2 to Ejaz Maqbool, one of the advocates-on-record arguing for the Mosque, asking for a meeting in Delhi on Oct. 8. But the Mosque side conveyed to the mediators that they were “busy” with the proceedings in Court. Indian Express has learnt that the Mosque side has also asked mediators to clarify “who” had initiated these meetings. They also sought clarification on whether there was a counter-proposal to a concrete proposal put forward by Mosque side in March this year, which was a plan for coexistence of a mosque and a temple at the site. The side representing the temple did not agree to discuss the plan and did not make an offer of its own either, which led to the mediation process being deemed “failed”.Advocates refused to comment on the matter and none of the mediators could be reached. Indian Express
Ayodhya: First mediation panel meeting: Republic
In a major development in the Babri Masjid land dispute, the Supreme Court-appointed 3-member mediation panel is going to hold the first meet today in New Delhi amid day-to-day hearing in the top court. The Ayodhya mediation panel is holding the meeting between the parties involved in the case at Delhi's India International Centre. However, members of Hindu Mahasabha and Nirmohi Akhara are not participating in the meeting.
Mahasabha lawyer rejects possibility of mediation
At a time when the mediation for the Babri Masjid title dispute has commenced yet again ahead of the expected verdict by the Supreme Court, Republic spoke to Vishnu Shankar Jain, the lawyer of Hindu Mahasabha today. He categorically stated that there was no question of his client participating in the mediation proceedings as there could not be any compromise on a single inch of land. Jain also revealed that other stakeholders including Sunni Central Wakf Board and Ramlalla Virajman did not attend the meeting of the mediation panel at the Indian Habitat Centre. He reasoned that both Hindu as well as Muslim parties were not interested in mediation as the matter was at final stage in the SC.  republicworld
Rafale engine manufacturer tells Rajnath: Don’t terrorise us on tax
New Delhi :CEO of French engine manufacturer behind the Rafale fighter jet told Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday that India should provide an attractive business environment and not “terrorise us” with its tax and customs rules. He made the remarks while announcing that the company plans to invest nearly USD 150 million in the country.French multinational Safran, the manufacturer of the M88 engines fitted in Rafale jets acquired by India, gave a presentation of its facility to the defence minister who took a tour of the assembly line of the company, PTI reported. indianexpress
After Congress calls Rafale 'Shastra Puja' "tamasha", BJP's Bofors retort
New Delhi:Union minister Rajnath Singh's "Shastra puja" in front of the first Rafale fighter jet handed over by France on Tuesday has generated a debate. While the Congress has slammed it as "tamasha"(drama) and "superstition", Singh's cabinet colleague and BJP chief Amit Shah has lashed out, questioning the Congress's choice of issues to criticise BJP. BJP also said the Congress is used to worshipping Ottavio Quattrocchi, the alleged middleman in Bofors deal. Congress Sanjay Nirupam joined the fray, calling his own party's critics "atheists".On Tuesday, after taking the formal handover of the first of 36 Rafale jets in France, Rajnath Singh had performed a "Shastra puja" -- the traditional veneration of weapons on the occasion of Vijaya Dashami.In front of the gathering, he wrote the Sanskrit word "Om" on the body of the aircraft, sprinkled it with flowers and offered up a coconut. Finally, he placed a lime in front of the wheels -- a practice meant to ward off evil -- before flying off on a sortie in the jet. Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge called it a "tamasha" (drama), pointing out that Congress made no such display when the Bofors guns were purchased."There is no need to do such ''tamasha''. When we bought weapons like Bofors gun previously purchased, no one went and brought them while showing off," he said. He even took a dig at defence minister's sortie in the fighter jet, saying,"These people go, show off, sit inside (aircraft)". Congress leader Udit Raj, ex minister of BJP, also took a dig at Singh's action, questioning what the world would think of India after such a "superstitious" show.NDTV
India down 10 places to 68 on global competitiveness index, among worst-performing BRICS nations
India has fallen 10 places to rank 68th on an annual global competitiveness index compiled by the Geneva-based World Economic Forum. It is among the worst-performing BRICS nations along with Brazil, which was ranked 71st this year. BRICS is a grouping of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.The forum said India ranked high in terms of macroeconomic stability and market size. It added that India’s financial sector was relatively deep and stable despite the high delinquency rate, which weakens the soundness of the banking system.India is also ranked high, at 15th place, in terms of corporate governance, and is at second place globally for shareholder governance. In terms of the market size, India is ranked third, while it has got the same rank for renewable energy regulation.
Rakesh Asthana bribery case: HC grants CBI 2 more months to complete probe
Delhi high court today granted two more months to CBI to complete probe in a bribery case allegedly involving agency’s then special director Rakesh Asthana. Justice Vibhu Bakhru made it clear that no further time will be granted to the agency to complete the investigation in the case.The court passed the order while disposing of a plea by the CBI seeking extension of time to complete the probe in the case by 6 months. Additional Solicitor General Vikramjit Banerjee, representing the CBI, said Letters Rogatory has been sent to USA and UAE and the response is awaited due to which the investigation could not be completed.PTI
Shiv Sena hands Haryana poll ticket to man who attacked JNU’s Umar Khalid
New Delhi :Naveen Dalal, one of the 2 men accused of attacking activist and former JNU students’ union leader Umar Khalid last year, is back in a new avatar — as the Shiv Sena’s candidate from Bahadurgarh for the Haryana Assembly polls on Oct.21.A self-proclaimed gau rakshak, Dalal said he joined the Sena six months ago because their ideologies on “nationalism and cow protection” matched.  In Aug. 2018, Dalal and the other accused, Darwesh Shahpur, were allegedly involved in a failed attempt to shoot Khalid outside the Constitution Club in New Delhi — Khalid escaped unhurt after the gun jammed. indianexpress
Central leadership colluding with conspirators to unseat Yediyurappa, alleges Karnataka MLA
Days after he was served a show cause notice by BJP, Karnataka MLA Basanagouda Patil Yatnal alleged there was a conspiracy to unseat CM BS Yediyurappa. Yatnal, who had served as a minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Govt, also accused the Central leadership of colluding with the “conspirators”.Vijayapura MLA had earlier lashed out at the Centre over the delay in grant of central aid for flood relief in the state. “You want one more month to go like this (without adequate flood relief from Centre) and later remove Yediyurappa. This is your conspiracy,” Yatnal said.indianexpress
TMC leader Kurban Ali shot dead inside party office in Bengal’s east Midnapore
Midnapore: A local TMC leader was shot dead inside a party office in West Bengal’s East Midnapore district on Monday night, triggering a blame game among the supporters of the ruling party and opposition BJP.34 year-old Kurban Ali Shah was sitting inside TMC’s office when he was targetted at around 10pm in Panskura area, near Kolkata.A few men came by on motorcycles, stepped inside the party office, pumped bullets into him, taking advantage of the noise and festive crowd on the streets during Durga Puja that masked the gunshots and fled.The victim was the assistant sabhapati of the local Panskura Panchayat Samiti that is roughly the size of an administrative block. Ruling party leaders accused BJP-backed criminals of the killing.HT
Curfew imposed in Rajasthan's Malpura town after communal tension over Dussehra procession
Curfew was imposed in Malpura town of Rajasthan's Tonk district Tuesday following communal tension that broke out when some miscreants pelted stones at a Dussehra procession, police said. A Dussehra procession was moving on and some miscreants pelted it with stones. This led to commotion and effigy of Ravana could not be burnt, they said. The incident happened Tuesday night, police said."The curfew was imposed in Malpura town this morning and additional policemen were deployed to maintain law and order," SP, Tonk, Adarsh Siddhu said. Members of the Hindu community staged a sit-in demanding the arrest of the miscreants, police said.Siddhu said a man has been arrested in connection with the incident and efforts are on to nab the others.IANS
Maharashtra Govt yet to begin work on rs. 100 crore skills university for Muslims
Pune:It has been more than a year since Maharashtra State Govt issued an official notification announcing establishing India’s first National Skills University for Muslim Minorities to be set up on 100 acres of land with an initial corpus fund of Rs 100 crore but things on ground are far different. Despite the announcement, the Govt has not moved forward in acquiring land for setting up of the university which was initially slated to come up in Aurangabad.The Govt announcement was made on proposals forwarded by retired Chief Commissioner of Income Tax Akramul Jabbar Khan and Maharashtra Waqf Liberation and Protection Task Force President Saleem Mulla. The duo have now demanded that the state Govt set up the university at any place in Maharashtra where waqf land is available.Earlier, they had demanded that the university be set up on over 45 acres of waqf land in Kondhwa, near Pune, and moved a proposal before CMO in 2017. But the Govt announced that it would set up the ambitious project in Aurangabad. Demanding that the university be set up at the earliest, Khan said, “Muslim young men from lower middle classes do not have the appetite for degree or even diploma courses. But they do have a better ability and capacity to learn and excel in trades and services to join the market as early as possible”. indiatomorrow
Mumbai mosque invites non-Muslims to weed out ‘misconceptions’
Mumbai: Jivajirao Patil always believed that non-Muslims were not allowed to enter a mosque till he visited one. He was among the two dozen Hindus who spent 2 hours inside Mira Road-based Sana Masjid recently.“It is a wonderful feeling. Today I learnt that anybody can come here. No one enjoys a special status as a poor can occupy his place in the first row if he comes early while the world’s richest man may stand at the end if he comes last,” said a visibly overwhelmed Patil.Welcome to Masjid Parichay—an initiative of Jamaat-I-Islami Hind that introduces mosques to non-Muslims. This past Sunday’s Parichay was held in association with JIH’s student wing Students Islamic Organisation (SIO) by Millat Welfare Association, which manages the Mira Road mosque. “We had been thinking about it for some time and then SIO volunteers helped invite the guests and organize it,” said the association’s trustee Iqbal Mahadik.Fear of the unknown, said JIH’s volunteer Dr Parvez Mandviwala who conducted the demonstration for Hindu visitors at the Sana Masjid recently, has created misconceptions.“A Muslim’s life revolves around the mosque from birth till death. So, while a local imam may whisper azaan in the ears of a newborn, another may be called to lead the namaz-e-janaza (funeral prayer) of the same person. The takht or the platform to wash a dead body before it enters the grave is also often kept in a mosque’s corner,” said Dr Mandviwala, pointing visitors to a takht in a corner.But before they were ushered into AC mosque’s carpeted main prayer hall, the guests watched the steps involved in wadu or ablutions. “It is to purify oneself before one stands before God in submission. Islam means peace and its other meaning is submission. So you submit to God with a clean body and mind,” says Dr Mandviwala. Over several months, JIH has held many such visits aimed at removing misconceptions about mosques and fighting Islamophobia. “The most important thing I learnt here is that the mosque is very peaceful and gives out a message of peace and unity,” said Ashish Pandey.
After 14 yrs, Zee Group’s DNA newspaper downs shutters, to go digital now
Mumbai:Amidst the liquidity crunch the parent Zee Group faces and staggered closure, its print venture, the Daily News & Analysis (DNA) today said it is stopping print edition from Thursday and will go digital, citing changing reader preferences.The last edition of 14-year-old morninger, which had already stopped from Delhi and other centres earlier, will come out on Thursday from Mumbai and Ahmedabad, the broadsheet owned by Zee Group’s Subhash Chandra’s Essel Group said.Chandra family is going through financial difficulties as some its business bets have gone awry and the liquidity crisis made it difficult to refinance debt. They are selling their promoter holding— over 90 %of it is pledged–to repay lenders. The group still owes around Rs 7,000 crore to lenders after repaying over Rs 6,500 crore since March.The announcement comes at a time when globally many media brands are retreating from the print side like the popular magazine Newsweek or tweaking their strategies for convergent media. DNA said it will continue as a web-portal and it is also planning to soon launch a mobile application which will focus more on delivering video-based original content. DNA is the third paper to be closed in 2019 alone. While Deccan Chronicle Group-owned Financial Chronicle was shuttered earlier this year and merged with the parent’s English broadsheet, Mukesh Ambani had made a fry-in-the-pan entry into the print with First Post in Jan. but chose to wind up within 6 months. city-based eveninger Afternoon was also shut earlier. PTI
Turkish operation in Syria has begun: Erdogan
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said his country's long-threatened military operation in northeastern Syria had started. Turkey has launched a long-threatened military operation in northeast Syria to remove Kurdish-led forces from the border area and create a "safe zone" to resettle millions of Syrian refugees. " Turkish Armed Forces, together with the Syrian National Army, just launched #OperationPeaceSpring against PKK/YPG and Daesh terrorists in northern Syria," Erdogan said in a post on Twitter, referencing the Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA)."Our mission is to prevent the creation of a terror corridor across our southern border, and to bring peace to the area,"he added. SDF spokesman Mustafa Bali said Turkish warplanes had started carrying out airstrikes in northeastern Syria. The head of Arab League said he was alarmed at Turkey's planned military offensive into northeastern Syria. In a statement on Wednesday, Ahmed Aboul Gheit said that such an invasion would be a "blatant violation of Syria's sovereignty and threatens Syria's integrity".
US going into middle east was worst decision ever: Trump
President Donald Trump, today said the US going into the Middle East was the worst decision ever made in the history of the country. After deciding to pull back the US troops from northern Syria, Trump took to Twitter to announce the country’s Middle East policy. He said, though the US troops are in the process of leaving Syria, they have not abandoned the Kurds calling them ‘special and wonderful’ fighters.republicworld
UAE withdraws ‘hundreds of troops’ from Aden pending handover
UAE has pulled some of its forces from Yemen’s southern port city of Aden, officials and witnesses have reported. According to Reuters, 2 officials said that an Emirati convoy boarded a naval vessel at Buraiqa oil terminal near the Aden refinery. Four employees at the refinery claimed to have witnessed a large convoy of military vehicles and three buses carrying around 200 troops heading towards the terminal.Furthermore, RT Arabic said that a large number of UAE and Sudanese forces withdrew from Al-And Air Base, the largest in Yemen and situated in the province of Lahj, 60km north of Aden. Saudi-backed Yemeni Govt of President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi and the separatist Southern Transitional Council (STC) are reportedly close to negotiating a handover of the city — which the STC aspire to be the capital of a future South Yemen state – back to the Yemeni Govt after having seized control with UAE support back in August. middleeastmonitor
Israel using fake charities to get security information about Gaza
Palestinian Interior and National Security Ministry in Gaza yesterday revealed that Israeli intelligence has started using new ways to get security information about Gaza, a statement said.The change in technique is a result of the ministry’s crackdown on Israeli spies on the ground. Instead, Israeli agents are now calling Palestinians in Gaza claiming to be staff at charities which can help alleviate their financial worries in an effort to obtain detailed private information.Hundreds of Facebook pages and Twitter accounts have been setup by Israeli intelligence services in an effort to gather personal information about individuals. Some claim to offer jobs, others provide advice and food recipes.MEMO
Hamas insists on simultaneous Prez, general polls
Palestinian Resistance Movement, Hamas has said that is it is insisting on presidential and parliamentary elections being held simultaneously. Other Palestinian factions agree with this, said its spokesman. “We call upon [President Mahmoud Abbas] to announce his position regarding the initiative of Palestinian factions,” explained Hazem Qasim. “This is a positive prelude for holding simultaneous presidential and parliamentary elections.”Qasim added that the initiative includes elections for the Palestinian National Council, which was agreed upon during earlier reconciliation talks. Hamas press release followed Abbas’s meeting with Hanna Nasser, head of Central Elections Committee, early this week in Ramallah. Nasser was asked to start preparing immediately for a parliamentary poll only.MEMO
Tunisia: Ennahda sets conditions for forming a Govt
Tunisia’s Ennahda party has announced the conditions it has set for other parties to enter into an alliance with it in order to form a Govt.Exit polls following Tunisia’s parliamentary elections, which took place on Sunday, showed Ennahda in first place with 17.5 % of the votes, comparing with 15.6% for Heart of Tunisia party. According to the initial distribution of seats, Ennahda won 40 seats, while Heart of Tunisia (Qalb Tunis) won 33 seats, Karama (dignity) coalition 18, the Tahya Tunis Movement of PM Youssef Chahed 16, Al-Chaab 15, the Free Constitutional Party 14 and the Democratic Current 14. The official results are expected to be announced today. A leader of the Ennahda Party, Ali Al-Arid, said that his party has set a number of conditions for entering into a partnership with other parties, stressing that the party will not deviate from these fixed principles.MEMO
Saudi authorities launch another crackdown on princes and businessmen
A Twitter account, named An Old Diplomat, published documents showing that the Saudi authorities have frozen property assets of several princes and business people. This appears to be a second crackdown on Saudi businessmen and princes similar to Ritz-Carlton 2017 campaign.The Twitter account stated that the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman seized vast lands owned by Sheikh Ajlan Al-Ajlan north of Riyadh after preventing the sale or disposal of the lands.An Old Diplomat revealed in another tweet that the management and sale of the company assets owned by Hamad bin Saedan, north of Riyadh, have also been frozen.The account predicted a sudden and rapid collapse of the Saudi real estate market, i.e. prices are expected to fall by 50% and more, as what happened with the stock market in 2006.He added that the real estate assets of Riyad Al-Mustaqbal Real Estate, Abdulrahman Al-Sheikh and Mohammed Al-Eidan were frozen.According to An Old Diplomat, the decisions to freeze real estate assets included Olaya Real Estate Company, Younis Mohammed Al-Awad, Ibrahim bin Saedan and Ibrahim Al-Harabi, in addition to Prince Badr bin Abdulaziz, brother of King Salman.The list also included Moussa and Adil Al Mousa and Saleh Shuqair.middleeastmonitor
Sri Lanka HC orders rearrest of ex-police chief, Defence Secretary in Easter Sunday attacks
Colombo High Court today ordered re-arrest of ex-Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando and suspended police chief Pujith Jayasundera, exactly 3 months after they were granted bail by a local court which ruled there was no basis for their arrests for allegedly failing to prevent the Easter attacks.Both Fernando and Jayasundera were arrested in July after Attorney General Dappula de Livera instructed the authorities to charge them for their failure to prevent the Easter attacks.On July 9, they were granted bail by Colombo chief magistrate Lanka Jayaratne who said that the judiciary was not obliged to keep people in jail to please the wishes of the police or anyone else. The Colombo High Court on Wednesday ordered their re-arrest and the duo has been remanded until Oct. 23.PTI
Republican-led probe finds Russia helped Trump in 2016 election
A Senate Republican-led investigation said in a report Tuesday that Russia indeed sought to help President Donald Trump in 2016 election, contradicting persistent White House claims to the contrary.The Senate Intelligence Committee's 2016 election investigation report said a sweeping social media manipulation campaign by St. Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency (IRA) represented "overt support of Russia's favored candidate in the US presidential election." AFP
Imran Khan Govt breaks records, Pakistan's debt increases by all time high of Rs 7,509 billion
Islamabad: Pakistan's ruling Imran Khan Govt has broken all previous records in borrowing money merely in first year of its tenure. According to the official data, during the one-year regime of the present Govt Rs 7,509 billion (Pakistani currency) increase was recorded in the total debt of the country.A report in the Pakistani media, citing sources, said the State Bank of Pakistan has sent this borrowing data to PMO.IANS
US air attacks in May on Afghan drug labs killed 30 civilians: UN
US air attacks on alleged Taliban drug labs in Afghanistan killed or wounded dozens of civilians in May, says a UN report, which has been rejected by US military. UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) conducted a 4-month investigation into May 5 air attacks that hit over 60 sites US and Afghan forces identified as drug-production facilities in the western provinces of Farah and Nimroz.UNAMA and UN human rights office said today that there were at least 30 deaths among 39 civilian casualties.The number included 14 children and five women killed or wounded in the air raids, which UN said violated international humanitarian law as the victims were non-combatants.aljazeera
Amid ‘severe liquidity crisis’, UN chief says struggling to pay salaries
UN is facing a “severe liquidity crisis”, reaching its deepest deficit of the decade, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has said, warning that the world organisation will not have enough cash by next month to cover payrolls.Guterres warned that in the current month, the organization will reach the deepest deficit of the decade. “We risk exhausting the closed peacekeeping cash reserves, and entering November without enough cash to cover payrolls,” he said.PTI
US bars China officials over Uighur crackdown in Xinjiang
US has said it would restrict visas for Chinese officials until Beijing ended its "repression" of Uighurs and other Muslims in the western region of Xinjiang, a day after blacklisting companies it said were linked to the crackdown. State Department said it would not issue visas to the Chinese Govt and Communist Party officials believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, mass detentions and abuses in western Xinjiang.It did not identify the targeted officials or say how many were affected by the ban, which can also be applied to their immediate family members.aljazeera
2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry awarded to 3 scientists for development of lithium-ion batteries
2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has been jointly awarded to John B Goodenough of US, Britain’s M Stanley Whittingham and Japan’s Akira Yoshino for development of lithium-ion batteries, Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences announced today.Lithium-ion batteries have reshaped energy storage and transformed cars, mobile phones and many other devices in an increasingly portable and electronic world.indianexpress
Congested Lal Quarter market in East Delhi turns pedestrian-friendly
How Congress’s Failures Helped BJP Communalise The NRC In Assam: Betwa Sharma
Bangladesh’s high GDP a fitting reply to Amit Shah’s ‘termite’ taunt at illegal immigrants:DILIP MANDAL
A new India is emerging, and it is a country ruled by fear:Amit Chaudhuri
Floods In Bihar: Jamaat-E-Islami, SIO And Dr. Kafeel Khan Give Helping Hand To Victims
Delhi will have to accept China's role in Bangladesh while shaping its ties with Dhaka:C. Uday Bhaskar
Fearless dissenter who had a plan to make the countryside hum with life — that is Gandhi India needs:Rajmohan Gandhi
Postcards to the PM: Why Students' Solidarity With Kashmir Is Significant:Harsh Mander
We will fight for freedom, not allow the country to descend into the dark ages:Zafar Agha
Corporate lobby sees opportunity in slowdown: Modi regime is clueless on the real reasons:Dr BK Kango/IPA
Of ‘infiltrators’ and ‘internal matters’: Indian Govt’s doublespeak on NRC:Ipsita Chakravarty
Babar Provided Rs 303, 6 Annas 6 Pie for Babri Masjid As ‘Nankar’:Haider Abbas
India to work with China, Pakistan to gauge impact of climate change

Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 7:46 PM)


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