16 March 2020

16 MARCH NEWS: Shaheen Bagh spurns Delhi ban orders after Kejriwal says protesters will have to follow ban on gathering over coronavirus. Telangana becomes latest state to oppose CAA-NRC-NPR. Delhi Police tells court, entered Jamia campus to save innocent students. UP property damage ordinance: Tribunal can hear ex-parte, can’t be questioned. ‘Coronavirus’ brings 10-day relief for Kamal Nath govt in MP as action shifts to SC

 16 March 2020: 20 Rajjab 1441: Vol: 12, No: 157
*anti-CAA,NRC-NPR stir*
Shaheen Bagh spurns Delhi ban orders:Govt to invoke Epidemic Act to clear gatherings of 50 or more
Protesters at Shaheen Bagh have summarily rejected Delhi government’s order to limit gatherings to 50 people or less, potentially setting up a confrontation with authorities likely to invoke provisions of the Epidemic Act to try and clear the sit-in."Inko sirf behkana hai… kabhi nahi uthenge (They just want to mislead... We'll never leave)," said nonagenarian Asma Khatun, who is part of the triumvirate of “Dadis of Shaheen Bagh”.Bilkis (82) and Sarvari (75) are with her on this, saying the only thing that would make them disband the protest would be the government repealing the controversial CAA."They got our children killed and got their mothers burnt," said Sarvari, asking where CM Arvind Kejriwal was when “we Muslims” were being killed in Delhi. "We won't die even if you fire 100 guns)," added Khatun.Sit-in protests against the controversial act, deemed to be discriminatory while granting citizenship to persecuted religious minorities of select neighbouring countries, have been continuing at Shaheen Bagh and Jamia Millia for over 3 months now.Since then, however, attendance at Shaheen Bagh has thinned to a few hundred all of whom are easily accommodated under the tent that had been erected at the site. Those manning the stage at the site, however, claimed that crowds swelled significantly during the evening when people return from work and join the sit-in.In Delhi, at least 10 sit-ins are being held at Hauz Rani, Inderlok, Shahi Idgah and many other areas in Old Delhi. In violence-hit north east Delhi where protests were being held in seven localities, only one sit-in is still on at Seelampur."We don't fear coronavirus. We fear this black law. We fear separation from our loved ones. When we won't have enough proof and documents, then children will be separated from their parents, wives from their husbands," Noor Jahan said while addressing Monday’s gathering on loudspeaker to loud cheers.telegraphindia
Shaheen Bagh: New coronavirus restrictions may halt citizenship protests: BBC
Shaheen Bagh protesters will have to follow ban on gathering over coronavirus: Kejriwal
The ban on gatherings of more than 50 people in Delhi to stop coronavirus spread will also cover protests including the one against the amended citizenship law in Shaheen Bagh, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Monday.“This will be applicable for all. Whether it is a protest or anything else, people will have to follow it,” the chief minister said while replying to a reporter’s question.HT
Coronavirus:PIL filed before SC seeking evacuation of protesters from Shaheen Bagh
A PIL has been filed before the Supreme Court seeking a direction for the immediate evacuation of protesters in Shaheen Bagh and other protest sites in the country, on account of Coronavirus outbreak.The plea states that the entire population of Delhi is under an emergency situation and is extremely vulnerable to the infectious Coronavirus disease. It is further submitted that all kinds of crowded public places including Shaheen Bagh serves as a potential transmitter of this deadly virus. In this regard, the petition reads,"As such, situation of Shaheen Bagh protest or any other crowded places is potential transmitter of the deadly virus which can be capable of the said deadly virus throughout the city and eventually across the country. Hence, it is urgently needed the respondents may be directed to take appropriate measure to ensure the immediate removal/evacuation/suspension of group of protesters from the place of protest as continuance of such protests and consequently the gatherings over the protest site would be enormously dangerous and contribute to the rapid spread of the deadly outbreak of Covid-19 across the country." Petition filed by Nand Kishore Garg goes on to state that these protesters have no right to endanger lives of thousands of innocent people in the name of exercising their fundamental right to protest.barandbench
Punjab:  Mega protest postponed, but anti-CAA dharnas to continue with smaller numbers over Coronavirus scare
Ludhiana:Amid COVID-19 scare and health advisories warning against mass gatherings, organisers of 3 indefinite dharnas protesting against CAA  in Ludhiana, Malerkotla and Mansa have declared that they will continue, but in fewer numbers.Mohd Mustkeem, press secretary, Shahi Imam Maulana Habib Ur Rehman Sani Ludhianavi, said, “Our fight will continue. However, we do understand the health advisory and we will be doing a smaller gathering from Tuesday onwards. We started implementing this on Monday itself. We had planned a mega rally of all centres — Ludhiana, Malerkotla and Mansa – and other like-minded organisations on March 25, which we have postponed. We will be taking a call on a different date on March 31.”In Malerkotla, indefinite dharna going on since Jan.7 has been converted to a weekend dharna, but no change has been announced in Mansa.Nadim Anwar, coordinator of Joint Action Committee of Malerkotla, said, “Now we have decided to organise dharna on weekends only. If any particular speaker wants to come to address the masses, we organise dharna on weekdays as well on Sarhandi gate. One such gathering happened on Monday as activist Chandershekhar Azad had come to address the masses. However, life is going on as normal in Malerkotla.”In Mansa however, Savidhan Bachao Manch has not given any instructions for small gatherings.indianexpress
COVID-19: Muslim organisations decide to defer anti-CAA protests in Tamil Nadu
Chennai: Various Muslim outfits on Monday  announced their decision to defer over a month-long anti-CAA protests being organised by them in several parts of Tamil Nadu, citing the outbreak of the deadly novel coronavirus.The protests, included the women's agitation here at Old Washermanpet area, dubbed as "Chennai's Shaheen Bagh."PTI
Telangana becomes latest state to oppose CAA-NRC-NPR
Telangana government Monday passed a resolution urging the Centre to amend CAA to remove all references to any religion or country. It also expressed concern over the proposed implementation of NPR and NCR which “may result in exclusion of a large number of people”.The government said there were serious questions and valid concerns regarding the legality and constitutionality of the 3 exercises. It highlighted the confusion and genuine apprehension among the public.With this, Telangana joins a host of other states to oppose CAA, including MP, Kerala, Punjab, West Bengal, Delhi, Rajasthan, Puducherry, Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh and Bihar.Maharashtra, along with Tamil Nadu, has put on hold NPR exercise as it could “impact people of all religions”.In its resolution, Telangana government stated: “Indian national movement was a convergence of various beliefs, thoughts and ideas. Upon Independence, our founders embraced diversity, pluralism and secularism in the Constitution. The enactment of CAA has raised concerns that by introducing a religious test for citizenship, the Act insults the memory of India’s founders, who consciously chose not to incorporate a ‘racial principle’ or ‘religious principle’ in the provisions applicable to citizenship.”indianexpress
Rajasthan government moves SC challenging validity of CAA
Congress-ruled Rajasthan government on Monday moved the Supreme Court challenging validity of the CAA, saying the law was violative of fundamental rights such as right to equality and life under the constitution.Rajasthan became the second state after Kerala to move the top court invoking Article 131 of the Constitution under which a state is empowered to directly move the top court in case of a dispute with the Centre.The plea seeks declaration of the CAA as "ultravires to the provision of the Constitution of India and be declared as void".PTI
Delhi Police submits ATR in court: Entered Jamia campus to save innocent students
Delhi Police in their action taken report submitted before a Delhi court in connection with the violence at Jamia Millia Islamia(JMI) have claimed that the police was constrained to enter the campus to contain the violence and save innocent students trapped inside.Metropolitan Magistrate Rajat Goyal had directed Delhi Police to file an action taken report on plea of Jamia seeking registration of FIR against police action on students in Dec. The plea was filed by advocate Asghar Khan, who submitted that Delhi Police mercilessly beat up University students, hurled racial abuses and made derogatory comments, and some police officers, without any just cause, broke open the main library gate and lobbed tear gas shells.In their reply to the court, Delhi Police submitted, “With a view to contain the violence and maintain, law and order, the police was constrained to enter the university campus. Police personnel could successfully contain the violent activity by temporarily apprehending 52 persons under section 65 of Delhi Police Act…It is submitted that the said action was required to be taken in light of the ongoing violence from within University campus and to rescue innocent students trapped inside and to ensure normalcy.”JMI had submitted that despite several requests and various complaints to police seeking registration of FIR and taking action against the accused person neither any FIR has been registered nor has any investigation been carried out whatsoever. ATR also stated that the police could not identify between rioters who carried petrol bombs and trapped students. indianexpress
Yogi govt seeks more time on ‘name-shame’ poster issue in HC
Yogi Adityanath government on Monday submitted an application, seeking more time in the case related to name-and-shame hoardings, as the court set deadline to remove the hoardings ended.Hearing could not take place due to a strike called by lawyers here in Uttar Pradesh.The state government, in its plea, has sought time on the ground that the case on this issue was pending in Supreme Court.It may be recalled that the Allahabad High Court, on March 9, had ordered the state government to remove hoardings with photographs of 57 anti-CAA protesters on the ground that it violated the right to privacy.The court had asked the government to bring down the hoardings by March 16.The hoardings have not been taken down as yet.IANS
UP property damage ordinance: Tribunal can hear ex-parte, can’t be questioned
Under the new UP Recovery of Damage to Public and Private Property Ordinance promulgated by Governor Anandiben Patel on Sunday, sweeping powers have been granted to a new claims tribunal, including on collecting compensation ex-parte if required, that is, without hearing the individual who is accused of vandalism. Further, ordinance states that the award of compensation made by the tribunal will be final and cannot be appealed against before any civil court.The ordinance makes provisions for the setting up of claims tribunals, one or more, to “investigate the damage caused (during protests) and to award compensation” and to cover “cost of action” taken by police and administration for prevention of damage to public properties.The ordinance also places the burden of proving that one has no “nexus” to a protest, hartal, strike, bandh, riot or public commotion — during which any destruction of public or private property was caused – on the individual, failing which the individual’s properties will be seized.Significantly, the ordinance states that the principle of absolute liability under law shall apply once “the nexus with the event that precipitated the damage is established”. The law, however, does not specify what the nature of the “nexus” would be. Under Section 21(2), the new law says that while liability will be borne by the “actual perpetrators of the crime”, one who “instigates” or “incites” the crime would share the liability as per the decision of the claims tribunal. However, the law does not discuss what action constitutes incitement or instigation.The ordinace was promulgated 4 days after the Supreme Court refused to stay Allahabad High Court’s March 9 order for removing the state govt’s name-and-shame posters of anti-CAA protesters. The tribunal, the law says, may follow “summary procedure as it thinks fit” and has the powers of a civil court for evaluating evidence and enforcing the attendance of witnesses. While the law specifies that criminal proceedings can be conducted parallel to the claims proceedings against the same accused, it bars any civil court from interfering with any directives of the claims tribunal.The ordinance also gives the authorities the power to publish such information.The ordinance was promulgated a day before the HC’s March 16 deadline for the state to take down the hoardings.The ordinance, while empowering the tribunal the power to proceed ex-parte if the respondent fails to appear, does not consider any exceptions such as failure to serve the notice to the respondent.indianexpress
Aligarh: Businesses open as tensions over anti-CAA protester''s death ''subside''
Aligarh: With tensions after the death of a youth injured in a protest over the amended citizenship law appear to be subsiding, shops and other business establishments opened in the old city areas here on Monday.Shops and business establishments in Upperkot, Babri Mandi and Turkman Gate areas had remained closed for the past two days following the death of Mohammad Tariq Munawwar (22), who had suffered gunshot injuries during the violent protest against the CAA on February 23.Security at sensitive spots in the old city here was beefed up after the youth died on Friday night at Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College and Hospital in AMU.Aligarh Zone DIG Preetendra Singh on Monday said security arrangements will continue as a precautionary measure and praised the role played by Tariq''s family in defusing the tensions.Former Samajwadi Party MLA from Aligarh City, Zameerullah Khan, on Monday said BJP leaders who were protesting against Varshney''s arrest and had given him a hero''s ovation when he was sent to the jail, should be charged under Section 120-B of the CrPC.He also demanded a compensation of Rs 25 lakh and a government job for Tariq''s family.PTI

Uttar Pradesh: AISA activist held for demanding other students’ release
Nitin Raj, vice president of AISA was arrested from the anti-CAA protest site at Clock Tower in Lucknow on Sunday night. Nitin was demanding the release of students arrested for putting up anti-CAA posters at the site.AISA activists, on Monday, staged demonstrations demanding Nitin's release.Police officials were tight-lipped about Nitin's arrest and refused to comment on the same.IANS
Reading of Faiz poem ‘unsuitable to time, place’: IIT-Kanpur panel
The recitation of Faiz Ahmad Faiz’s poem by students protesting against CAA on campus last year was “unsuitable to the time and place”, a committee set up by IIT in Kanpur has concluded.It has also found the role of five teachers and six students, who participated in the protest, “to be less than desirable” and recommended that the institute should “counsel” them.6-member committee was set up by the institute to look into a complaint against a students’ demonstration on Dec.17, where Faiz’s poem, ‘Hum Dekhenge’, was read to express solidarity with students of Jamia Millia Islamia, who were beaten up by Delhi Police during a protest against CAA. The complaint by Vashi Mant Sharma, a temporary teacher at IIT-Kanpur, claimed the poem hurts his religious sentiments. Manindra Agarwal, committee chairperson and deputy director, confirmed that the report was submitted last week. On the recitation of Faiz’s poem, he said, “The committee observed that perhaps, at that time and place, it was not the most suitable thing to say. The person who recited that (poem) agreed with this perspective and wrote a note saying that he regrets (it) in case anybody’s feelings were hurt. So that matter was closed.”When asked why the panel felt it was unsuitable, he said, “This was a volatile environment. People with different thought processes and different perspectives were there, (and were) agitated. One should not do things that could agitate people even further. In a normal, day-to-day situation, I can do many things, which, in a volatile situation, I should not.”Agarwal clarified that the committee did not go into “the interpretation of the poem”.indianexpress
 CAA Opponent Ajit Bhuyan Files Rajya Sabha Nomination
New Delhi: The ongoing protest against the CAA has started to find its reflection in the upcoming Rajya Sabha elections in Assam with senior journalist Ajit Bhuyan, who has been at the forefront of the protest, filing his nomination papers as an independent candidate on March 13.In the thick of the protests, held in the state in response to the decision of the Narendra Modi government last December to implement the controversial Act which would violate the Assam Accord of 1985, Bhuyan had to step down from the post of editor-in-chief of the Assamese news channel Prag News. It is widely believed that he was asked by his employers to do so due to mounting pressure from the BJP as the channel, under his leadership, had given extensive coverage to the protests.thewire
Assam Human Rights Commission  notice seeks health condition of Akhil Gogoi
Assam Human Rights Commission (AHRC) on Monday issued a notice to the Central Jail, Guwahati asking it to submit a report on the health condition of peasant leader Akhil Gogoi who was arrested on December 27 last year for his alleged role in violence during anti-CAA protests.AHRC member Deva Kumar Saikia issued the notice after taking cognisance of a complaint filed by All Assam Law Student Union Vice-President Debashish Medhi.PTI
Delhi violence: HC issues notices to Centre, AAP government, police in plea to preserve CCTV footage
Delhi High Court on Monday issued notices to the Centre, the Delhi Police and AAP-led government on a plea seeking directions for CCTV footage of last month’s communal violence to be preserved. The petition, filed by the Jamiat Ulama-I-Hind, also sought registration of cases against those involved in the violence and demanded a special investigation team comprising retired judges of the Supreme Court and the High Court to look into the matter.A bench comprising Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar listed the matter for further hearing on March 27. The petitioner also said directions should be given to not remove the debris from the site of violence without the gathering of evidence. “There are serious allegations of damaging the CCTV cameras installed in the riots-affected areas by the police which is evident from the videos surfaced and circulating in the social media,” the plea said.Jamiat alleged that the police were refusing to file first information reports when complaints identified the accused, and were insisting that unidentified persons be booked. It added that a man has made a categorical allegation against BJP leader Kapil Mishra, claiming he is responsible for the death of his son, as well as for instigating the violence.scroll
Delhi violence: Tahir Hussain arrested, sent to 4-day police custody for IB officer’s murder
A Delhi court Monday sent suspended AAP councillor Tahir Hussain to four days in police custody for the murder of IB staffer Ankit Sharma, noting that his custody was required to unearth the conspiracy behind the riots.Hussain was produced before Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Pawan Singh Rajawat for first time. On previous occasions, he had been produced before Judge at his residence in connection with a riot-related case.Hussain appeared before the court with his face wrapped in a shawl along with his legal team. He was questioned inside the courtroom for an hour, following which an application seeking his custody for 5 days was moved.Hussain was arrested by the police after they arrested and interrogated one Salman alias Haseen, who was earlier sent to 4 days in police custody. Hussain is one of the prime accused in Ankit’s murder case.The police told the court that they required Hussain’s custody to “unearth the conspiracy behind the riots which led to murder of Ankit Sharma and identify other members from the mob”.Hussain’s lawyers opposed the police demand, stating that identifying the other accused and recording Hussain’s confession could not be a ground for remand.The court, while granting 4-day police custody, said, “I find force in the submissions of IO that to unearth the conspiracy which led to the riots and massive loss of life and property, police remand is required.”Tahir was represented by his lawyer Javed Ali, who told the court that Hussain should be sent to judicial custody. He said if the police want his custody, they must show a strong case.“It is a fundamental right. Police custody is no more required. I was arrested on 5th of this month. Thereafter taken in police custody in another case. Many questions with regard to this FIR was asked. Whatever they posed, I (Hussain) answered. It is my duty. I want the truth to come to the court,” Ali told the court.Arguing that the application for police custody was nothing more than “humiliation”, Ali told court, “To record the confession and identify the other accused, police custody cannot be granted. Entire police is there. I am the person who is required to complete the investigation. It cannot be a ground to grant police custody.”Ali told the court that FIR does not show any recovery. indianexpress
Uniform beats Shah’s face-reading tech:Clip shows tormentors but case against ‘unknown people’
New Delhi:Police have registered a case accusing “unknown people” of killing Faizan, 23, who was seen in video clips being beaten by cops on a Delhi road and whose family says he was later tortured in custody before he was released and died in hospital.The videos, authenticated by fact-checking portal Alt.News, shows Faizan and four other youths lying injured on a road during last month’s riots while policemen beat and kick them, order them to sing the national anthem and taunt them with the word “azadi”.“Policemen brutally beat my son on the road and later in the lockup and killed him for no reason. He was bleeding and his entire body had turned blue,” Faizan’s mother Kismatoon told The Telegraph at the family home at Kardampuri.“Now, after he has died of his injuries, the police are accusing unknown people of killing my son. Will I ever get justice?”Faizan’s elder brother Naeem had a question for Union home minister Amit Shah, who had said that face-recognition technology was being used to identify the rioters.“There is clear evidence that Faizan was repeatedly assaulted by policemen. Why have the police failed to identify the guilty cops using the technology Amit Shah spoke about?” Naeem said.“They are trying to protect the killers. When they released Faizan from custody at Jyoti Nagar police station, they told us he had been thrashed by a mob during the violence and that a probe was being conducted.” Contacted by this newspaper, joint commissioner of police Alok Kumar said a mob had assaulted Faizan and 4 others in Jaffrabad, the epicentre of the violence, and the police had taken them to hospital.Faizan’s family alleges that 5 youths were lying on the road because of a beating from the police, and that they were taken not to hospital but to a police lockup and brutalised again.telegraphindia
Without Govt Aid, Shopkeepers of NE Delhi Rely on Good Samaritans: thequint https://www.thequint.com/my-report/north-east-delhi-rebuilding-their-lives-after-violence
Delhi: Arrests continue, locals say Muslim youth being ‘arbitrarily targeted’
New Delhi: It’s over 20 days since communal violence gripped North-East Delhi. As the victims try stitching their lives back together and fill out compensation forms to find aid in relief centres, fear still stalks parts of the region as reports of Muslim youth being taken in for “questioning” by Delhi police surface, without much clarity or a confirmed number of detainees.The police has reportedly filed over 700 FIRs in connection with rioting and destruction of public property. It has also reportedly made over 170 arrests. However, locals residents claim that the number could be higher and that Muslim youths are still being hauled up by the police.“My 19-year-old brother was picked up. His phone was taken away and it was switched off. We were not informed. Someone from the area told us. He was let off a day later and was not given any food or water. This is still going on in many other areas. We do not know how many people are being taken in or what their status is. A lot of information that should be available to us, is unclear,” said Sheikh Muhammad, a resident of Khajuri Khas.In this backdrop, there is a surge of local residents seeking legal. Speaking with NewsClick about police’s alleged high-handedness, lawyer Hasib Siddiqui said: “We were dealing with cases of 10 people who were taken in from Sri Ram colony area. 4 of them were let off while the other 6 were sent to jail.We questioned SHO over the picking up of Muslim youth without any basis. Police said that they are taking in people on the basis of video footage and evaded response.”Some other residents alleged that no action was being taken against those in police custody. While their names have been scribbled on boards in police stations, the arrested men are yet to be presented in front of the DM for further proceedings, they claimed.Chandbi from Khajuri Khas said when they went to police station:“We saw at least 32 names. Many of people picked up by police have been taken in but their cases are not being processed.”newsclick
Even doctors cried treating shot, bleeding patients: Al Hind’s Dr Anwar on violence
9 days after violence erupted in northeast Delhi, Dr MA Anwar was still attending to patients at 15-bedded Al Hind hospital in the Mustafabad neighbourhood. On the evening of 3 March, exhausted-looking Anwar, dressed in a track suit, was continuously moving from one bed to another.A 23-year-old named Salman approached him. On 24 Feb, second day of the violence, a mob had attacked Salman with acid. He was brought to the hospital the same day. Now, the burn injuries on his back had scabs. Salman was discharged a day earlier but had returned to ask Anwar whether he should go to the local police station as he had received a call from there. In the past few days, Anwar has become a godfather of sorts for the victims of the communal violence. So shaken was their faith in the authorities that patients had begun to seek advice of all kinds from the doctor. “People are scared. They have seen the worst on those nights. I can’t say no to them,”Anwar told me. On the day I met him, a group of lawyers were also visiting Al Hind, to help victims register police cases. Anwar asked one of them to help Salman.Ensconced amidst a dense Muslim residential area, Al Hind treated hundreds of victims of the violence. According to Anwar, Salman was among “500–600” patients who had been admitted to 15-bedded hospital between 24 and 26 Feb, when Hindu mobs unleashed targeted violence on Muslim neighbourhoods. Al Hind was the only hospital within a radius of 7–10 kilometres. Anwar and his staff—his 2 brothers are among nurses—found themselves having to treat hundreds of injured patients, some with grievous wounds. He recounted that patients, most of whom were bleeding profusely, poured in for 2 days, while mobs reigned on the streets. Anwar said that over 3-fourths of the patients came in with injuries from firearms.caravanmagazine
MP crisis: ‘Coronavirus’ brings 10-day relief for Kamal Nath govt as action shifts to Supreme Court
BJP moved the Supreme Court on Monday after the much-anticipated floor test in Madhya Pradesh did not take place following the adjournment of the Assembly by Speaker NP Prajapati over the coronavirus pandemic.The top court will hear the matter on Tuesday after a petition was filed by former chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and nine other MLAs demanding that the Kamal Nath-led Congress government face a trust vote within 12 hours. The petition demanded that the Speaker, the Chief Minister and the Principal Secretary of the Assembly be directed to “hold the floor test in the Madhya Pradesh Legislative Assembly within 12 hours of the passing of the order by this court”.Later in the evening, Madhya Pradesh Governor Lalji Tandon asked Chief Minister Kamal Nath to face floor test on Tuesday. “If you do not take a floor test by March 17, it will be assumed that you have lost your majority,” the letter by the Governor to Kamal Nath said.Earlier in the day, in a relief to the tottering Kamal Nath government, which has been on the brink of collapse following the resignation of 22 MLAs, the Speaker adjourned the Assembly till March 26 due to the coronavirus outbreak. Incidentally, barring BJP MLAs, the Speaker, CM Kamal Nath, and Congress MLAs were seen wearing masks in the House.After the Assembly session was adjourned, BJP paraded 106 MLAs before the Governor and submitted a letter of support. BJP MLA from Maihar Narayan Tripathi, one of 2 BJP MLAs who voted with the ruling Congress in the Assembly on a bill last year, was not among the MLAs present. Meanwhile, hours before the Assembly session began at 11 am, Kamal Nath wrote a letter to Governor, saying his directive to hold a floor test was out of the purview of his constitutional rights and that it “does not lie within the domain of the Governor to interfere with the functions of the Speaker”.In his letter, Nath claimed some of his MLAs were being held hostage in Karnataka, and a floor test should be when all MLAs are “free from coercion and not under any pressure”.
Madhya Pradesh Governor Asks Kamal Nath To Take Trust Vote Tomorrow
Madhya Pradesh Floor Test : SC to Hear BJP's Trust Vote Plea Tomorrow as Party Sees Red Over 10-day Breather to Kamal Nath Govt

*J&K, SOUTH ASIA & india *
Yasin Malik, 6 others plead not guilty in IAF personnel murder case
Jammu :JKLF chairman Yasin Malik and six other accused on Monday pleaded “not guilty” in the killing of four IAF personnel in Srinagar in 1990.“I do not plead guilty. It is a fabricated case,” he said, when Special judge NIA Subash Gupta read out the charges to him through video conferencing and asked him whether he pleaded guilty, or he wanted to face trial. The judge fixed the date of hearing on March 30.On Saturday, NIA court charged JKLF chief Yasin Malik and six others — Ali Mohammad Mir, Manzoor Ahmed Sofi alias Mustafa, Javed Ahmed Mir alias Nalka, Nanaji alias Saleem, Javed Ahmed Zargar and Showkat Ahmed Bakshi.The seven accused were also charged with criminal conspiracy, murder attempt and under provisions of TADA and the Arms Act.Referring to CBI chargesheet, including documentary and oral evidence, Special NIA Judge Subhash Gupta observed that “on mild sifting and evaluating the confessional statements of the accused” recorded under Section 164 of CrPC and Section 15 of TADA, “it can safely be considered as incriminating material against all the accused as they have divulged about the hatching of criminal conspiracy punishable under Section 120-B of Ranbir Penal Code and they further confessed that in furtherance of which, crime was committed by them in the present matter”.The judge has also directed the jail superintendents to produce both the accused — Yasin Malik and Showkat Ahmed Bakshi — through video conference on March 16.indianexpress
Pakistan Uses SAARC Video Call on Coronavirus to Raise Kashmir, Calls for Lifting of 'Lockdown'
 Pakistan on Sunday used SAARC nations video conference on coronavirus to raise Kashmir, with the country's State Minister of Health Zafar Mirza calling for immediate lifting of the "lockdown" there to allow virus containment measures. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Maldivian President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, Nepalese Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli, Bhutanese premier Lotay Tshering, Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, participated in the video conference.Pakistan PM Imran Khan did not participate, and instead sent Mirza, who is his Special Assistant on Health.The underlying message of the video conference was unitedly taking on the pandemic, but Pakistan used the occasion to raise Kashmir, with Mirza calling for the "lockdown" to be lifted in Jammu and Kashmir to deal with the coronavirus threat."Equity in health is a fundamental principle of public health. In this regard, let me say that it is a matter of concern that COVID-19 has been reported from Jammu and Kashmir and in view of the health emergency, it is imperative that all "lockdown" there must be lifted immediately. "Opening up communication and movement would facilitate dissemination of information, allow distribution of medical supplies and allow containment...to proceed unimpeded," Special Assistant to Pakistani Prime Minister on Health Mirza said.PTI
Need policy for Sufism in Jammu and Kashmir: Sufi Council to Amit Shah
NEW DELHI: A delegation of All India Sufi Sajjadanashin Council met Union home minister Amit Shah on Sunday and urged him for a structured government policy to “take Sufism to every household in the Valley”. The delegation also sought “an impartial, quick inquiry” into Delhi riots.This is the same group of Sufi clerics who, along with RSS, had held meetings to ensure harmony before the Ayodhya verdict. Ever since the withdrawal of Article 370 last year, the group made a couple of visits to J&K urging the youth to look for empowerment within the Indian Constitution, be wary of Pakistan-sponsored propaganda and not fall prey to terrorism.Sufi body’s chairman Syed Nasiruddin Chishti said the meeting with Shah was positive. “We told him about how situation in Kashmir is improving and how it will only get better if there is door-to-door promotion of the Sufi philosophy.With regard to riots, we have asked him to conduct an impartial inquiry into who started the violence,” he told ET. Some clerics had dressed in saffron robes as according to them, “the colour belongs to Hinduism but it was adopted by Khawaja Moinuddin Chishti around 8 centuries ago”.economictimes
Gulmarg scam accused Baseer Ahmad Khan to be J&K L-G’s adviser
Jammu :With the Home Ministry sanctioning the appointment, Baseer Ahmad Khan, one of the main accused in the 2009 Gulmarg land scam involving bureaucrats and some prominent hoteliers of Kashmir, is set to be the fourth adviser to Lieutenant Governor GC Murmu.According to the communication from Home Ministry, the advisor shall assist the Lieutenant Governor of Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir in effective discharge of his functions. The appointment will be effective from the date on which he assumes charge.Presently working as Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Khan attained age of superannuation on June 30, 2019, but the government extended his service by a year, citing his role in handling crisis-like situations in Kashmir. His extended term was due to end on June 30 this year.indianexpress
Expelled Leader From Mehbooba Mufti's Party Meets PM, Demands Her Release
New Delhi: After the release of former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah, Member of Parliament Nazeer Ahmed Laway, who was expelled from the PDP, met Prime Minister Narendra Modi here on Monday and demanded that party chief and former Chief Minister Mehboba Mufti be released along with Omar Abdullah.After the meeting speaking to the news agency IANS, Mr Laway said, "There are two Chief Ministers and many youths who are under detention and I have demanded that all of them should be released."He said that the Prime Minister has assured him of more affirmative action and the detainees will be released soon.IANS
4 militants killed in encounter in Anantnag district: J&K Police
4 militants were killed in an encounter with security forces in South Kashmir’s Anantnag district on Sunday morning, J&K police said. According to police officers, the 4 were operatives of LeT and Hizbul Mujahideen.They were identified as Muzaffar Ahmed Bhat, who was district commander of LeT; Omar Ameen Bhat, Sajad Ahmed Bhat and Gulzar Ahmed Bhat. While Omar and Sajad were affiliated to LeT, Gulzar was with Hizbul, said police officials.indianexpress
Troubled lender Yes Bank to resume all services from 6 pm on Wednesday
Troubled lender Yes Bank on Monday said that it will resume full banking services from 6 pm on Wednesday.RBI had on March 5 taken control of Yes Bank, after the lender – which is laden with bad debts – failed to raise the capital it needs to stay above mandated regulatory requirements. Placing Yes Bank under a 30-day moratorium, the central bank had imposed a limit of Rs 50,000 on withdrawals to protect depositors. “Visit any of our 1,132 branches from March 19, 2020, post commencement of banking hours to experience our suite of services,” Yes Bank tweeted on Monday. “You will also be able to access all our digital services and platforms.”The bank’s shares rose 45.2% during the day to Rs 37.10 on BSE.Authorities have opened investigations into Yes Bank’s lending practices that led to its failure. Its founder Rana Kapoor has been detained and a case of money laundering was registered against him.scroll
RBI says Yes Bank moratorium to be lifted on Wednesday
Yes Bank Case: ED Summons Anil Ambani In Money Laundering Probe
Reliance Group Chairman Anil Ambani has been summoned by the ED in connection with its money laundering probe against Yes Bank promoter Rana Kapoor and others, officials said on Monday.They said Ambani was asked to depose at the Enforcement Directorate office in Mumbai on Monday as his group companies are among the big entities whose loans went bad after borrowing from the crisis-hit bank.The officials said Ambani, 60, has sought exemption from appearance on some personal grounds and he may be issued a new date.PTI
No decision to discontinue printing of Rs 2,000 banknotes: government
New Delhi :The government on Monday said no decision has been taken to discontinue printing of Rs 2,000 banknotes, and state-owned SBI and Indian Bank are reconfiguring ATMs for Rs 500 and Rs 200 notes.“No indent was placed with the presses for printing of Rs 2,000 denomination notes for 2019-20. However, there is no decision to discontinue the printing of Rs 2,000 banknotes,” Minister of State for Finance Anurag Singh Thakur said in a written reply in Lok Sabha.PTI
Coronavirus Could Knock 1% Off India's GDP: Economist Rathin Roy
Likening the health crisis caused by coronavirus to a situation which is prevalent during the time of war, economist Rathin Roy, who was earlier part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Economic Advisory Council,said, “money cannot be allowed to be a shortcoming” in tiding over the crisis. Roy said, “I think the fiscal response to this crisis has to be similar to fiscal response in war time. It’s a crisis that needs to be tided over and money cannot be allowed to be a shortcoming there. By which I mean if people have to be paid even to stay at home, then we have to find the money to do it.” The economist said that this will require “a conversation between the private sector and government and all stakeholders”, and sought to assure that “there are ways of dealing with this” which do not involve “long term imprudence or damage”. huffingtonpost
Delhi High Court to hear plea for drafting uniform civil code next week
The petition came up for hearing before a Bench of Chief Justice D.N. Patel and Justice C. Hari Shankar which said it will hear the plea on March 23. Five other similar petitions, in which the court has sought the Centre’s response, are also listed for hearing on March 23.The fresh petition filed by social activist Danish Eqbal has sought direction to the Centre for drafting UCC and publishing it on the website for public debate. As an alternative, it has sought direction for the Law Commission to draft the UCC within three months by including uniform minimum age of marriage; grounds of divorce, maintenance and alimony; adoption and guardianship; and succession and inheritance within three months and publish it on the website for wider public deliberation. The plea said that country-wide application of UCC will end multiple personal laws promoting tolerance among various groups across the nation.PTI
Elgar Parishad case: SC denies pre-arrest bail to Teltumbde, Navlakha, gives 2 weeks to surrender
Anand Teltumbde and Gautam Navlakha’s petitions seeking anticipatory bail were rejected by the Supreme Court Monday in connection with the Elgar Parishad case. The apex court gave the activists two weeks time to surrender, and ordered they submit their passports to authorities immediately.Navlakha and Teltumdbe are charged under various provisions of UAPA and are accused of being part of Elgar Parishad event held in Pune on Dec.31, 2017.The duo had moved the top court after a single-judge bench of the Bombay High Court rejected their pleas for anticipatory bail. On Feb.14, HC judge Justice Prakash D Naik extended their interim protection from arrested by four weeks to appeal before the SC.Meanwhile, the police said Navlakha was involved in raising funds, recruiting cadre and weapon deal for banned Maoist group and was part of a “larger conspiracy” to destabilise the government.Navlakha argued that he had undertaken fact-finding visits in tribal areas as a civil rights activist. The visits, he said, were for a purpose of documenting the impact of alleged unrest and violence on locals.indianexpress
SC dismisses Dec 16 gangrape convict’s plea to restore his legal remedies
The Supreme Court today  dismissed Dec.16 gangrape convict Mukesh Singh’s plea to restore all his legal remedies ahead of his hanging on March 20. Mukesh claimed he was misled by his lawyers and sought the court’s directions to allow him to appeal against the death sentence.Mukesh had sought quashing of all orders passed by courts and the rejection of his mercy petition by the President since the day his curative petition was dismissed by the SC on the ground that the earlier lawyer Vrinda Grover had misled him. The plea, filed through advocate ML Sharma, also sought a CBI probe into alleged “criminal conspiracy” and “fraud” hatched by Centre, Delhi govt and advocate Vrinda Grover, who is the amicus curiae in the case.Tihar jail authorities have started preparations for the hanging. Officials said the hangman, Pawan Jallad, has been asked to come to Tihar from Meerut on March 17, and a ‘dummy execution’ will be conducted in the next 2 days to test the ropes and other equipment.A Delhi court set the execution of the 4 convicts — Mukesh Kumar Singh, Pawan Gupta, Vinay Sharma, and Akshay Kumar Singh — for March 20 at 5.30 am. indianexpress
3 Nirbhaya Convicts Move UN Court In Latest Attempt To Stall Execution
New Delhi: 3 of the 4 men convicted in the 2012 gang-rape and killing of Nirbhaya today petitioned the United Nation's International Court of Justice (ICJ) in another eleventh-hour attempt to stall their hanging, scheduled on Friday.Akshay Singh, Pawan Gupta and Vinay Sharma approached the World Court on a day the fourth convict, Mukesh Singh, was told by the Supreme Court that he had no legal remedy left after his mercy petition and curative plea were both rejected.ndtv
Gujarat: 4 Congress MLAs resign ahead of RS polls, 41 sent to Jaipur resort
4 Gujarat Congress MLAs tendered their resignation to the Assembly Speaker on Saturday, triggering panic in the party ahead of the March 26 election to 4 Rajya Sabha seats from the state. One more MLA was reported to have gone “unreachable” since Sunday morning, leading to speculation that he too has joined the rebels. Speaker Rajendra Trivedi confirmed that he had accepted resignations of 4 MLAs of Opposition party. Trivedi, however, refused to share their names, saying he would do so only in the House.According to sources, 4 MLAs who resigned are Soma Patel from Surendranagar, JV Kakadiya from Dhari, Mangal Gavit from Dang and Pradhyumansinh Jadeja from Abdasa. Sources in the Congress said they were suspicious when Mangal Gavit, a two-time Congress MLA from Dang in South Gujarat, left Gandhinagar for Dang during the ongoing Assembly session on the pretext that he was required in his constituency for Holi.However, from Friday morning onwards, acting on instructions from higher-ups in the party, other Congress MLAs started accompanying Gavit wherever he went. Congress leaders remained with him all day and even took him out for lunch at a private hotel, before dropping him off at his house near Ahwa. Sensing trouble, Congress had already started sending their MLAs to resorts in Jaipur. According to sources, as many as 41 Congress MLAs have been sent to Jaipur over Saturday and Sunday.“We have sent Congress MLAs in two batches of 27 and 14 to Jaipur ahead of the Rajya Sabha elections, even as the party’s senior MLAs have been entrusted with the task of managing Ahmedabad and the House sessions in Gandhinagar. BJP is trying to buy off our vulnerable MLAs and their politics is deplorable,” said Virji Thummar, Congress MLA from Amreli seat.indianexpress
Parliament LIVE : Rajya Sabha passes Central Sanskrit Universities Bill
New Delhi :Central Sanskrit Universities Bill, 2019 was passed by the Rajya Sabha Monday. The Bill seeks “to establish and incorporate Universities for teaching and research in Sanskrit, to develop all-inclusive Sanskrit promotional activities and to provide for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.”indianexpress
UP:  Muslim man Jailed For 'Objectionable' Facebook Post On CM Adityanath
A 36-year-old man from Bulandshahr was arrested on Monday for allegedly posting an offensive picture of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Facebook, police said.The man, identified as Muqaddar Pahalwan, a resident of Jahangirabad area, has been sent to jail by a local court, the police said.“A complaint was made against the accused by a Bajrang Dal member here in which he alleged that an edited picture of the chief minister has been posted on Facebook. An FIR was lodged and the accused arrested this morning,” a police official told PTI.The accused was later produced in the local court which remanded him in 14 days' judicial custody, the police added.PTI
MP: Communal riots despite Section 144 in Neemuch, 8 people marked
Neemuch: After 2 communities came face to face about a minor dispute at a religious place, and the matter escalated to stone pelting from both sides, leading to a tense situation city wide late on Saturday night.The dispute started between a group of young men from both sides at around 9:30 pm. It died down somehow, but a group of people from one community started pelting stone at the religious place, and the other retaliated with the same. The place was close to MLA Dilip Singh Parihar’s house, who reported the incident.SP Manoj Roy lead the forces into the scene and tried controlling the communities. They disbanded the communities into smaller groups and forced them to go home. They have also marked 8 people from both communities who have been said to have started the riot. They have not disclosed the names of the rioters to stop the matter from escalating.freepressjournal
BSP founder Kanshi Ram’s sister to join Bhim Army chief’s Azad Samaj Party
36 years after Kanshi Ram floated BSP, his sister Sarwan Kaur is set to join Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar's newly floated Azad Samaj Party (ASP) in a major blow to the BSP-led by Mayawati.Seen as an upcoming alternative to the Mayawati-led BSP, ASP is expected to induct sister of BSP's founder Kanshi Ram as Patron of the party.IANS
India: 114 new Coronavirus cases confirmed, says health ministry; Calls for shutdown of all schools, malls; fresh travel restrictions imposed
Maharashtra on Monday reported 4 new cases of the novel coronavirus Covid-19, taking the number of patients in the state to 37. Maharashtra has the highest number of patients so far. Odisha also confirmed the first positive patient in the state. However the health ministry said India has 114 patients who tested positive for coronavirus.State governments across the country continued to take measures to fight the disease that has claimed over 6,500 lives across the world, 2 of them in India.  The fresh cases were reported from Ladakh, Odisha, and Jammu and Kashmir, and Kerala, Ministry of Health said.While Delhi government announced a ban on all gatherings of over 50 people, Odisha ordered all malls in Cuttack and Bhubaneswar to remain closed till March 31 after the detection of first positive case in the state. Meanwhile, 53 more evacuees from Iran landed in Jaisalmer in Rajasthan today early morning, a day after around over 450 Indians were airlifted from Iran and Italy. All of them have been taken to a quarantine facility in Army Wellness Centre.So far, 32 cases have been reported in Maharashtra, 23 in Kerala, 12 in Uttar Pradesh, 7 in Delhi, 6 in Karnataka, 4 in Ladakh, 3 in Telangana and Jammu and Kashmir, 2 in Rajasthan, and one each in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Odisha and Punjab. The total number of confirmed cases includes 17 foreigners — 16 Italian tourists and a Canadian. huffingtonpost
Coronavirus: No fliers from EU, Turkey, UK to be allowed into India
Further intensifying lockdown induced by the global spread of the Novel Coronavirus Disease, Centre Monday requested all airlines not to board India-bound passengers from European Union, the European Free Trade Association, Turkey and United Kingdom. This follows the suspension of all visas, and effectively means that even Indians currently in these countries may have trouble getting back home.The government also announced compulsory quarantine for a minimum of 14 days for passengers coming from/transiting through UAE, Qatar, Oman, and Kuwait. Both moves come into effect from the midnight of March 18 and will be in force till March 31.
Maharashtra: Ajanta, Ellora Caves, Siddhivinayak And Tuljabhawani Temples Shut As COVID-19 Cases On Rise
Authorities in Maharashtra, which has registered the highest number of coronavirus positive cases in India, have decided to close some prominent tourist and religious attractions as a precautionary measure.The world-famous Ajanta and Ellora caves near Aurangabad, the popular Siddhivinayak temple in Mumbai and the Tuljabhawani temple in Osmanabad district would remain closed in view of the coronavirus situation in the state, officials said.Entry restrictions to Mantralaya, the state secretariat in south Mumbai which sees thousands of visitors daily, will also be in force, Public Health Minister Rajesh Tope said.outlookindia
 Delhi bans gatherings with over 50 people, including in Shaheen Bagh
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal on Monday announced that any gathering – religious, family, social, political or cultural – of over 50 people will not be allowed in the national capital in order to prevent the spread of coronavirus, which has claimed one life in the national capital so far.The ban on gatherings, AAP chief indicated, will also cover Shaheen Bagh protests against CAA, NRC and NPR.While addressing reporters after reviewing Delhi govt’s efforts to tackle the spread of the disease with DMs, SDMs, municipal commissioners and Cabinet ministers, Kejriwal ordered the shutting of gyms, night clubs and spas in the city till March 31.“We have also decided to shut gyms, night clubs, spas till March 31. And gatherings of over 50 people, be it religious, social, political, family, or cultural, will also be not allowed. Marriage functions will be out of its purview as of now but we appeal to people to postpone weddings if possible,” Kejriwal told reporters.When asked if ban will have the Shaheen Bagh protests under its ambit, Kejriwal said: “It will be applicable for everyone, be it protest or any other gathering.”On possible closure of shopping malls, CM said a decision will be taken in a day or 2 depending on how the situation evolves.DMs and SDMs have powers under Delhi Epidemic Diseases, COVID – 19 Regulations, 2020to act against such gatherings, he pointed out.indian express
Coronavirus: Maharashtra to stamp passengers who need home isolation
As Maharashtra is taking drastic measures to control coronavirus, in a decision proposed by the health department, the government is planning to stamp arriving international passengers, who need home isolation, on hand.Officials said they proposed this to the state government and the chief minister as the only measure to confirm home isolation.indianexpress
Coronavirus : Govts worldwide order people off streets, stop travel to curb spread; Somalia, Tanzania confirm first cases
Somalia's health ministry said the country registered its first case of the new coronavirus.Tanzania has confirmed it's first case of coronavirus, said Gerald Chami, a spokesman at the ministry of health.Morocco will close all mosques from today as a protective measures against the coronavirus outbreak, the country's supreme religious council said. US and countries across Europe are closing schools, entertainment venues and all but essential services, as they step up efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic.Governments are limiting travel - both inward and outward - to curb the movement of people. South Korea and China, both wary of imported infections, have tightened requirements for international arrivals.More cases are now being reported outside China, where the virus first originated late last year, than inside.Schools in New York City are shut and classes moved online, while entertainment venues have been ordered to close from Tuesday, as officials increasingly turn to quarantine measures to tackle a virus that has now killed more than 6,500 people around the world.aljazeera
Italy reports 368 coronavirus deaths in 24 hours
Italy on Sunday reported 368 new deaths from the coronavirus outbreak as the country's death toll hit 1,809 while the number of positive cases rose to 24,747 from 21,157 on Saturday, the country's civil protection authority said.Spain became the second European country to impose a nationwide lockdown after 2,000 new cases were confirmed and the number of reported deaths doubled.aljazeera
Coronavirus kills Iran religious leader as death toll jumps again
COVID-19 has killed a member of the clerical body that appoints the supreme leader, according to Iranian state media, the latest official in the country to die of the highly infectious disease caused by the new coronavirus.Ayatollah Hashem Bathayi Golpayegani, 78, died two days after testing positive for the new coronavirus and being hospitalised, state news agency IRNA reported on Monday.Golpayegani represented Tehran in the assembly of experts, an 88-strong body of Muslim scholars that appoints and monitors Iran's supreme leader.At least 12 Iranian politicians and officials, both sitting and former, have now died of the illness, and 13 more have been infected and are either in quarantine or being treated.aljazeera
Coronavirus in Gulf states: No warm greetings, no mosque prayers
No shisha sessions, deserted streets, mosques and shopping malls, drones in the sky broadcasting public health warnings - the new coronavirus has turned life upside down in the Gulf societies.More than 870 cases of COVID-19 have been recorded so far across the six nations of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), but so far no deaths related to the virus have been reported.Kuwait has taken the most drastic measures in the GCC by largely locking down the country over the weekend, the only nation other than Italy to do so. aljazeera
Half a billion students miss school amid coronavirus outbreak: UN
More than half a billion children and youth are unable to go to school because of the coronavirus, the UN education agency said, as the outbreak continues to spread to new countries.At least 56 countries have shut down schools nationwide with a further 17 implementing localised closures, UNESCO said on Monday.
Your coronavirus emergency kit: Preparation, symptoms, myths
Saudi detains hundreds of government officials
Hundreds of government officials, including military and security personnel, have been detained in Saudi Arabia on charges involving bribery and exploiting public office.The announcement late on Sunday by Saudi's National Anti-Corruption Commission (Nazaha) also said that investigators would bring charges against those currently held in custody.In 2017, security forces arrested scores of princes and members of the kingdom's political and business elite in what was billed as in an attempt to combat corruption among the higher echelons of the Saudi bureaucracy.Those arrested were locked up for weeks in the luxurious Ritz-Carlton hotel in Riyadh, where some were reportedly physically mistreated. Nazaha tweeted on Sunday that it had arrested and would indict 298 people on crimes such as bribery, embezzlement and abuse of power involving a total of 379 million riyals ($101m). Aljazeera

Report: Saudi’s MBS kidnapped his cousin, Princess Basma Bint Saud
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman is said to have arrested his cousin, Princess Basmah Bint Saud Bin Abdulaziz, who has been missing for a year, Spanish ABC paper reported.According to the paper, a group of 8 men appeared in the princess’ home in Jeddah on 28 February as she was preparing to leave with her family to Switzerland for treatment.The paper said the princess, who is known for advocating for women’s rights and political reform in the kingdom, has been detained in Al-Hayer prison for the past year.The newspaper quoted a source close to the princess as saying that “since then, she has been held in cell 108 of Wing B where she is allowed to contact her family once a week”, adding that the family does not know when she will be released.In 2016, Princess Basmah returned to Saudi Arabia after then-Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Nayef intervened with the king securing her return.The princess was demanding King Salman return vast lands owned by her father, the late King Saud Bin Abdulaziz in Taif, and $2 billion held in Swiss bank accounts.middleeastmonitor
Netanyahu rival Gantz vows to form government 'within a few days'
Israeli opposition leader Benny Gantz has called for a unity coalition, vowing to form a government "within a few days" after President Reuven Rivlin officially appointed the leader to establish the next government amid a coronavirus pandemic. While Gantz called on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to join him in a unity administration, Monday's announcement was a sharp blow to Netanyahu, who had declared victory in the March 2 election.On Sunday, 61 of parliament's 120 legislators had voiced support for Gantz, leader of the Blue and White party, in consultations with Rivlin.At a televised ceremony on Monday, Rivlin gave Gantz 28 days, with the option of a two-week extension, to assemble a ruling coalition.aljazeera
Sudan allows flights to Israel to use its airspace for the first time
Sudan has for the first time allowed flights travelling to Israel to use its airspace, the Jerusalem Post reported.Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has previously expressed interest in opening Sudanese airspace as it would almost three hours off flight times from Israel to South America, the fourth most popular destination for Israelis.The move comes after a controversial meeting last month between Netanyahu and the interim leader of Sudan, General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, which caused widespread uproar over the perceived normalisation of ties between the two countries. middleeastmonitor
Israel settlers raid, vandalise Palestinian village in West Bank
A group of extremist Israeli Jewish settlers raided and vandalised the Palestinian town of Huwara in the south of the occupied West Bank city of Nablus.The settlers, Quds Press reported, attacked Palestinian homes and vandalised about 20 vehicles. Palestinian youths tried to chase the settlers away but they opened fire at them; no casualties were reported.Israeli TV Channel 13 reported that scores of “extremist” settlers raided the village of Huwara and damaged several vehicles.They threw stones at houses and vehicles and caused light damage, the Israeli station added.
4 sentenced to death for Bangladesh priest’s murder
DHAKA:4 extremists were sentenced to death in Bangladesh on Sunday for the 2016 decapitation of a senior Hindu priest during a spate of attacks targeting religious minorities in the Muslim-majority nation. Islamic State (IS) had claimed responsibility for the attack in the northern district of Panchagarh, but authorities blamed militants from Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB). “The court... sentenced all four to death over the murder. They are JMB members,” said Abdur Rafique, a court official in the capital Dhaka.Seven Islamist extremists were sentenced to death in November over the assault that was claimed by the IS.Bangladesh security forces launched a nationwide crackdown after the cafe siege, killing more than 100 members of the JMB, including its top leaders, and arresting hundreds of suspected militants.AFP
*views, Articles, FEATURES*
Behind Delhi riots lies politically-designed, socially-embedded trajectory of Discipline-Hate-Punishment:Hem Borker , indianexpress
From Ayodhya 1992 to Delhi 2020, mosques have long been a target of the BJP’s corrosive politics:Anjali Mody
Dispelling doubts on NPR good, now to deliver on it: Financial Express
Scindias And Muslims Share Rich Past. Will It Change With Jyotiraditya Joining BJP?Shaikh Mujibur Rehman, outlookindia
Taking Up Hijab Against Coronavirus:Anjana Basu, outlookindia
Despite What Harish Salve Says, We Can't Dismiss the Legal Challenge to CAA:Anubhav Khamroi, the wire
Coronavirus Pandemic: What Is the Case for an Emergency RBI Rate Cut?Sushant Hede, the wire

Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 5:38 PM).


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