22 April 2020

22 APRIL NEWS: Muslim students face 'bogus' charges of inciting Delhi riots: The Guardian. UAPA against Jamia students an example of crackdown on dissent, says Amnesty India. Coronavirus: Indian missions in Gulf nations warn citizens against ‘attempts to sow discord’


22 April 2020: 28 Shaban 1441: Vol: 12, No: 188


Muslim students face 'bogus' charges of inciting Delhi riots: The Guardian

Delhi police have been accused of slapping 2 Muslim student activists with “bogus” charges of conspiring to incite the recent riots, the worst religious violence in India’s capital for decades, and in which police were accused of being complicit. Meeran Haider and Safoora Zargar, students at Delhi’s Muslim-majority Jamia Millia Islamia, were charged under UAPA, which is usually reserved for terrorist activity and means they can be held for 6 months.The charges related to an alleged “premeditated conspiracy” to stir up communal hatred through a series of speeches, which police say led to deadly riots in Delhi. The students, who were taken into custody on 1 April, have also been charged with sedition, murder, possession of arms, incitement of violence, attempt to murder, and promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion and rioting.6 others were arrested connected to same charges in early April but were released on bail. According to police report, officers collected firearms, petrol bombs, acid bottles and stones from the students’ homes. Lawyers representing the men say they have seen no evidence or documentation.Police probe into the causes of the violence has, focused on Muslim and student activist community, particularly those who had been previously known to police for involvement in mass student protests against CAA. Police entered the Jamia campus in December, beating activists and detaining students.Akram Khan, lawyer representing Haider, a PhD student at Jamia, said: “There is no evidence to substantiate these allegations or even to connect my client to these riots at all. He was not even present. He was participating in the peaceful protests against CAA at Jamia Milia so he was known to the police, but that’s all. But we still have not even been given full charge sheet and I have seen no evidence.”Umar Khalid, a former JNU student leader, who was among those leading anti-CAA protests in Dec, has also been named on police report on the alleged conspiracy to cause riots, but has not been arrested.Shehla Rasheed, ex JNU student union leader, tweeted: “Yet another bogus case! It’s shameful how govt of India is exploiting lockdown (no protest) to target progressive activists, intellectuals, journalists. Stay strong.” Jamia Coordination Committee, a student and alumni group, also condemned the arrests. “The country is facing a massive health crisis. However, the state machinery is busy harassing and framing student activists in false cases to suppress voices of dissent,” it said.


Charge against Umar Khalid not yet clear

Former JNU student leader Umar Khalid’s name figures in the text of an FIR registered by Delhi police, but it is not yet clear whether he has been charged under the draconian UAPA. Delhi Police Special Cell unit investigating a “conspiracy” behind the communal violence which took place in northeast Delhi, had, however, charged Jamia Milia Islamia students Meeran Haider and Safoora Zargar under stringent UAPA. Advocate Akram Khan, who is representing in the case, said A senior police officer said that  Khalid’s name was in the text of FIR but he was not an accused “yet” and had not been charged under the UAPA. The case was “under investigation”, he said. In FIR, the police claimed that communal violence was a “premeditated conspiracy” which was allegedly hatched by Khalid and two others.thehindu


Delhi violence: UAPA against Jamia students an example of crackdown on dissent, says Amnesty India

Human rights body Amnesty International India has condemned the Delhi Police’s decision to charge 2 Jamia Millia Islamia students under UAPA, in a case related to communal violence in North East Delhi in Feb.Executive Director Avinash Kumar said the use of UAPA against Jamia students Meeran Haider and Safoora Zargar was an extension of the Indian govt’s “crackdown” on dissenting voices. He claimed a pattern was emerging of govt using the law as a tool to repress dissent.Kumar cited the examples of the case against Kashmiri photojournalist Masrat Zehra, who was charged under UAPA last week, and the arrests of human rights activists Anand Teltumbde and Gautam Navlakha, who were accused in Elgar Parishad case along with several other activists and lawyers.Kumar said Jamia students’ case, along with the arrests in Elgar Parishad case, are “politically motivated actions that are aimed at silencing those seeking state accountability”. “Indian government seems to have failed in its obligation to protect human rights defenders, and the rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly,” he said, adding that UAPA had been condemned by various human rights groups as “being repressive and against human rights norms”.scroll


Delhi Violence: Suspended AAP Councillor Hussain Booked Under UAPA

Delhi Police has booked suspended AAP councillor Tahir Hussain under the stringent UAPA in a case related to communal violence in northeast Delhi over CAA, a lawyer said. The police has also arrested former Congress councillor Ishrat Jahan and activist Khalid Saifi in the case, said advocate Akram Khan who is representing other accused in the matter.Hussain was arrested earlier in connection with the alleged killing of Intelligence Bureau official Ankit Sharma during the communal violence in northeast Delhi.PTI


Delhi Riots Death Toll Halved, Arrests Vastly Reduced In Delhi Police's Reply To RTI

Delhi Police has given vastly divergent figures about the number of people who died in the Delhi riots in February— and the number of people it arrested in connection with the violence—to the union home ministry and in response to a RTI application, documents reviewed by HuffPost India show.  Junior home minister G. Kishan Reddy told at least three Rajya Sabha MPs in written replies on 18 March that, according to information received from the Delhi Police, 52 people lost their lives due to the communal violence. This is the number that has been used in several news reports as well.However, Delhi Police public information officer-cum-deputy commissioner of police (crime) Dr. Joy Tirkey quoted a much lower figure—23 deaths—while responding in writing on April 13 to RTI activist Venkatesh Nayak’s application. There is a similar lack of clarity about the number of arrests made by the police in connection with the communal violence. The junior home minister, in response to specific questions from the 3 Rajya Sabha MPs about the number of people arrested, wrote that “3,304 persons have been arrested/detained”, basing this on information provided by the city police.huffingtonpost


Under Lockdown, Confusion & Fear Grip NE Delhi As Arrests Increase

A week into lockdown towards the end of April, Delhi police stepped up their investigation in case of the northeast Delhi violence where 53 people died. In the middle of an unprecedented lockdown, where COVID-19 cases are on the rise, Delhi police officials are taking rounds of the ravaged sensitive areas of NE Delhi to arrest people.Most of the reports of people being picked up have come from Muslim dominated localities.At a time when the courts are partially functioning and the media is not able to rigorously report, The Quint interviewed the families of three men who have been arrested, as well as their lawyers, and found stories of heartache, anger and confusion."The man who died infront of Brahmapuri Gali No 1, Vinod, he is a DJ. My husband was friends with them,” Aafreen*, whose husband Akhter* was picked up by Delhi police on 30 March. says, adding that he was arrested in FIR filed for Vinod’s death.Lawyer for Aafreen, Akhtar Shamim told The Quint that the rights of Akhter, who is an accused, are being compromised.thequint


Civil Society Leaders Condemn Delhi Police for Falsely Implicating Innocent Students, Activists in Delhi Riots

New Delhi:Activists, academics and citizens from all walks of life have strongly condemned the actions of the Delhi Police in “falsely implicating innocent student activists in Delhi riot cases, and booking them under the draconian UAPA”.This suppression of civil rights and liberties and targeting of our young democratic voices is reprehensible. We find it utterly shameful that Delhi police is using the COVID-19 lockdown, and the enormous humanitarian crisis of hunger confronting our country, as an opportunity to trample on the democratic rights of innocents. This is a time to unite as a nation, not to isolate and target students”, they said.“Abusing its powers, the Delhi Police has filed concocted cases against former JNU student, Umar Khalid and Jamia students Meeran Haider & Safoora Zargar, claiming that the communal violence in North East Delhi was a premeditated conspiracy hatched by them”, activists said.India Tomorrow



Coronavirus: Indian missions in Gulf nations warn citizens against ‘attempts to sow discord’

Indian embassies in Gulf on Wednesday urged citizens to remain vigilant against a spate of derogatory posts on social media linking the coronavirus pandemic to Muslim community in India.Indian embassy in Oman said it is important to stay focused and united in the fight to tackle the coronavirus spread and “not get distracted by fake news on social media with malicious intentions”. “The friendly relations between India and Oman are underpinned by our shared values of tolerance and pluralism,”embassy tweeted. “Let us all commit to maintaining unity and social harmony at this critical juncture.”Meanwhile, Indian embassy in Qatar posted screenshots of 2 Twitter accounts with the same display picture but different names. 2 accounts had tweeted the Islamophobic comments. Former Ambassador to UAE Navdeep Suri said the Emirates has strong laws against hate speech.He added that unnecessary controversy does not help the bilateral ties.scroll


'I Grew Up With Indians, This Attitude Was Not Indian': Princess Hend Al Qassimi

Intelligentsia in India-friendly Gulf countries has been speaking out against Islamophobic tweets in India. OIC has also issued a statement on growing Islamophobia in India.Senior editor of The Wire Arfa Khanum Sherwani spoke with Princess Hend Al Qassimi, a member of the royal family of UAE, on why she decided to speak out about the state of affairs.“This is how genocides are born. They first begin by hate that grows in the heart, comes to the tongue, and eventually turn into a genocide,” Princess Hend Al Qassimi said. “I’m sorry about the Islamophobia that is going on in India, but hatred is not welcome in my country.”thewire


PM Modi likely to interact with CMs on Monday

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to interact with all CMs via video conference on April 27 to take stock of the Covid-19 situation in the country, according to sources.


India should aim for 10-week total lockdown, not rush exit: Top health journal editor

New Delhi:With second edition of lockdown in India coming to an end on May 3, many believe that life will start going back to normal soon.However, Richard Horton, editor-in-chief of the world's leading medical journal The Lancet, has advised India to not hasten the exit strategy and observe a minimum 10-week lockdown.Speaking with India Today TV, Horton said, "Please please don’t rush this... if you rush lifting the lockdown and if you have the second wave [of disease] it will be even worse than the first wave."indiatoday

Bill Gates commends Modi govt for flattening COVID-19 curve in India

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates writes to PM Narendra Modi: "We commend your leadership and the proactive measures you and your government have taken to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 infection rate in India, such as adopting a national lockdown, expanding focused testing to identify hotspots for isolation, quarantining, and care, and significantly increasing health expenditures to strengthen the health system response and promote R&D and digital innovation.""I’m glad your govt is fully utilizing its exceptional digital capabilities in its COVID-19 response and has launched Aarogya Setu digital app for coronavirus tracking, contact tracing, and to connect people to health services," he added.ANI


Hydroxychloroquine Has No Benefit for COVID-19 Patients: US Report

Washington: The plan to use hydroxychloroquine for treating COVID-19 patients in US has received a setback with more deaths being reported among those who were given the much-touted anti-malarial drug, according to a report.Another report, however, suggested that there was insufficient clinical data to either recommend or oppose the use of hydroxychloroquine for treating those infected with the deadly coronavirus.US President Donald Trump, who has been aggressively promoting use of hydroxychloroquine in the treatment of COVID-19 patients, said that he would look into the reports. His administration has stockpiled over 30 million doses of hydroxychloroquine, a large chunk of which has been imported from India. Unreviewed study submitted to New England Journal of Medicine for publication and posted online found no evidence that use of hydroxychloroquine, either with or without azithromycin, reduced the risk of mechanical ventilation in patients hospitalised with COVID-19.thewire


Coronavirus cases in India cross 20,000; death toll crosses 650

India has recorded over 1,450 new cases of the coronavirus and 49 fatalities in the last 24 hours.With 1,486 new cases of Covid-19 being reported from different parts of the country, the total number of cases in India has surged past the 20,000-mark. While India’s coronavirus count has reached 20,471, death toll due has climbed to 652, the Ministry of Health has said.As per Ministry of Health and Family Welfare’s updated figures on Wednesday evening, the total cases in India include 15,859 active cases while 3,958 have either been cured or discharged. One patient has migrated. The total number of cases also includes 77 foreign nationals.As per data updated on Wednesday, Maharashtra has the highest number of confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus in India. A total of 5,221 people have been infected in Maharashtra.Gujarat, which has seen a spike in cases in the last few days, has replaced Delhi in the second place. While Gujarat has registered 2,272 cases, there are 2,156 Covid-19 cases in Delhi.Rajasthan has seen 1,801 cases, Tamil Nadu 1,596 and Madhya Pradesh is at 1,592. In Uttar Pradesh, the total number of coronavirus cases stands at 1,412 on Wednesday. It is followed by Telangana (945) and Andhra Pradesh (813).Kerala has recorded a spike in cases with the state tally now at 427, the number of cases has risen to 425 in Karnataka. In West Bengal, Covid-19 cases have climbed to 423. There are 380 positive cases in Jammu and Kashmir, 254 in Haryana and 251 in Punjab.Bihar has reported 126 coronavirus cases, while Odisha has 82.Of the total 652 deaths, Maharashtra tops the tally with 251, followed by Gujarat at 95, Madhya Pradesh at 80, Delhi at 47, Rajasthan at 25, Andhra Pradesh at 24 and Telangana at 23, according to the ministry.The death toll reached 21 in Uttar Pradesh, 18 in Tamil Nadu while Karnataka has reported 17 cases.India Today


U-turn over Amarnath Yatra: JKDirectorate of Information withdraws press note suspending pilgrimage

Jammu Kashmir Directorate of Information has withdrawn a press note which said that Amarnath Yatra has been cancelled due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. 42-day-long annual pilgrimage to the holy cave shrine is scheduled to commence on June 23. If the Amarnath Yatra would have been cancelled, it will be for the first in its history that the annual pilgrimage will be suspended.Earlier in the day, the Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) spokesman had said that the annual pilgrimage has been suspended this year due to the coronavirus outbreak.The decision to this effect was taken at the 38th board meeting of SASB which met under the chairmanship of Lt Governor G C Murmu at Raj Bhavan here, the spokesman had said.freepressjournal


Assam allows conditional inter-district travel for 3 days, adhering to MHA guidelines

Guwahati :Assam government has announced conditional inter-district travel for certain categories of people for three days, starting April 25. This will be in strict accordance with MHA guidelines.“This does not mean we have given blanket permission for movement across districts,” said Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, addressing a press conference in Guwahati, “There are different conditions, and movement will require prior permission from Deputy Commissioners.”Relaxation applies to different categories: patients requiring medical treatment, stranded citizens who are home-bound or office-bound and wish to travel by their own vehicles, and contractors/employers who need to transport their employees to their workplace.indianexpress


Assam: 2 brothers lynched days after being let out from jail amid Covid-19 outbreak

2 brothers in Assam who had recently been released from prison in the wake of Covid-19 were beaten to death in the state’s Baksa district, the police said. The incident, which took place in Athiabari village, may have taken place due to “village enmity”, a senior district official told Scroll.The two dead men, Biswajit Das and Haradhan Das, were “veteran criminals” and had recently been released from prison following a Supreme Court order to decongest jails due to the Covid-19 outbreak, said the official. “The two brothers have been involved in heinous crimes in the area such as extortion and robbery, and have been accused of murder also,” the police official said.scroll


Covid-19: Violence against healthcare workers now punishable by up to 7 years in prison

Stating that attacks on healthcare workers “will not be tolerated”, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar announced that central government has brought in an ordinance wherein guilty can be sentenced to seven years of imprisonment along with a fine of up to Rs 5 lakh.indianexpress


Centre sending faulty Covid-19 testing kits:CM Mamata

Amid a war of words between Centre and West Bengal government over Inter-Ministerial Central Teams being sent to the state for assessment of coronavirus-hit districts, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday alleged that faulty testing kits were dispatched to the state.Mamata said canards were being spread that the state was not conducting adequate testing. “This is absolutely false. Faulty kits were sent to Bengal which have now been withdrawn. We didn’t even get adequate testing kits,” Banerjee said. Bengal CM, who has been at loggerheads with the Centre after it was pulled up for not adhering to the lockdown measures and allowing certain relaxations, said her govt was doing the best it can to stem the spread of the pandemic. “Every day they (Centre) are telling us what to do and what not to do, sending people to look into the law and order situation and our preparedness against coronavirus. They are sending us strongly worded letters. We can also send them letters. But that’s not the point,” she said.indianexpress


‘Covid-19 crisis started with virus, propagated by govt,’ Bajaj Auto chief criticises lockdown

Bajaj Auto MD Rajiv Bajaj has castigated Modi government for enforcing an “arbitrary lockdown” to prevent coronavirus spread, CNBC-TV18 reported. “This crisis started with a virus, but it is being propagated by the government,” Bajaj said. “Lockdown is not the long term answer to the health crisis. The young and healthy need to go back to work. The lockdown is arbitrary and not an answer to the economic crisis either.”Bajaj also accused the government of deepening the country’s economic crisis and perpetuating the misery of the citizens by endangering their livelihood. “The lockdown is a solution that is looking for a problem,” the Bajaj Auto chief added. “The average age of the country is 28 and there is no social security...lockdown is not an answer to the economic and commercial crisis.”scroll


'No Request So Far From Police To Appear Before Them': Tablighi Jamat Chief Maulana Saad

Maulana Muhammad Saad is the chief of Tablighi Jamaat, an apolitical, socio-religious movement, which has been in the eye of a storm after scores of its members tested positive for Coronavirus. Jamaat and its headquarters (Markaz) in New Delhi’s Nizamuddin have been in the spotlight for over a month now.Saad rarely speaks in public, but in an interview to Outlook, he defended his organisation and assured cooperation with the police for any investigation into the activities at the Markaz. Maulana Saad said, "Delhi Police, on a regular basis, request for details of participants at Markaz, and this information is always made available to them. They also conduct frequent and random verification of participants, both within Markaz and of Tabligh participants in other areas too. This is not something new and has been the practice for several decades. Markaz conducts all its activities transparently and with due permission of local authorities. Tabligh has millions of followers across the world, and a movement at such large scale cannot escape the attention of law-enforcement and intelligence agencies. People may not know, but for the last 2-3 decades, at the request of police authorities, Tabligh participants from Markaz Nizamuddin have also been visiting prisons for spiritual learning and reform of inmates. He continued, "Programmes are usually planned several months in advance and we always provide prior information to police about programme schedule and expected attendance." He said, "So far, the police have served two notices and we have already responded to both. If, and when, the police require me or any volunteer to appear before them, it will happen without any delay. So far, there has been no such request from them." Giving information about funding, Maulana Saad said, "Markaz does not seek any financial support from any government or any public or private organisations. We do not associate ourselves with any commercial group or enterprise. All participants take care of their own expenses. We do not believe in Tabligh trips funded by others. Regarding the expenses of Markaz or local Tabligh centres, these are also taken care by volunteers and local community on a need basis, without any formal fund-raising. Markaz does not charge any fees to visitors, and all participation is purely voluntary."outlookindia


Covid-19 survivors should donate blood plasma: Tablighi Jamaat leader Maulana Saad

Tablighi Jamaat leader Maulana Saad has appealed to coronavirus survivors to donate blood plasma for infected people.In a letter issued on Tuesday, Saad said he and some other members of the organisation are exercising self quarantine.He said most of the members who were quarantined did not have any infection and they tested negative for COVID-19."Even from amongst the ones who tested positive for the disease, a majority of them have now undergone treatment and are now cured while I and a few others are still under quarantine."It is required that such people who are now cured of this disease should donate blood plasma to others who are still fighting the disease and are under treatment," he said.indiatoday


Tablighi Jamaat attendees from Tamil Nadu come forward to donate plasma for COVID-19 treatment

Chennai: Tablighi Jamaat which drew flak for being allegedly responsible for circulating COVID-19 by holding a religious gathering in Nizamuddin in Delhi last month is now forced to disprove 'baseless accusations' levelled against them.Jamaat members in Tamil Nadu, who have recovered from the disease, have come forward to donate their blood plasma for the clinical trial of plasma therapy following a call made by the chief of the sect. It is understood that those who have recovered from the disease have COVID-19 antibodies in their plasma that may help facilitate recovery of those critically-ill patients. Responding to the call of their chief, several Jamaat members in Tamil Nadu have expressed their willingness to donate their blood plasma. For instance, a young businessman hailing from Tiruppur has offered to donate his blood plasma. He has given his contact number to the district administration seeking to contact him if and when necessary. More attendees of the congregation who faced the ire of the society are coming forward to donate their blood plasma, say sources.punemirror


Foreign attendees at Tablighi Jamaat congregation under ED lens

Enforcement Directorate is probing financial transactions related to over 2,000 foreign nationals who had attended the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Nizamuddin here this March. The agency had earlier registered a money laundering case based on an FIR lodged by the Delhi police.The foreigners had come from more than 40 countries. Most of them were from Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Kyrgyzstan and Malaysia. They face allegations of violating visa rules and the Foreigners Act provisions, besides visiting restricted areas during the lockdown without permission.thehindu

ED quizzes close aides of Tablighi Jamaat chief


UP: Allahabad University professor among 30 held for hiding travel history, violating travel norms

Prayagraj police late on Monday night arrested 30 persons, including a professor of Allahabad University and 16 members of Tablighi Jamat from Indonesia and Thailand, for hiding travel history and violating travel norms during lockdown imposed in view of coronavirus pandemic.Among those arrested are seven from Indonesia, nine from Thailand and one each from Kerala and Bengal. Caretakers of Abdullah mosque in Shahganj and Hera masjid in Kareli have also been arrested, said police officials.Police said that foreigners have been arrested for visa norms violation mainly while all are also charged with failing to adhere to the Epidemic Act by not declaring the fact that they attended the congregation at Markaz. hindustantimes


Covid-19: Adityanath government to keep Tablighi Jamaat members who test positive in temporary jails

UP CM Adityanath on Tuesday directed officials to house the arrested members of the Muslim religious sect who had gathered in Nizamuddin in March amid the coronavirus pandemic in temporary jails if they are suspected of being carriers of virus, PTI reported. “In view of the arrests of Tablighi Jamaat members and others for security reasons amid the coronavirus-led lockdown, the chief minister has instructed to keep them in temporary jail and not in regular ones,” Additional Chief Secretary (Home) Awanish Awasthi said. “As many as 23 temporary jails have been set up in the state, and testing of inmates is being done.” scroll


Telangana: Several  people quarantined in Moazzampura masjid sent back to home

Hyderabad: A total of 52 persons including women who were under quarantine at the Jamia Masjid in Moazzampura in Mallepally have been sent home by authorities today.The authorities shifted around 56 persons to the mosque for a precautionary quarantine from different hospitals after they tested negative for COVID-19 symptoms. Similarly around 30 persons at Idar-e- Milia Masjid were also allowed by the authorities to return home. Few of them were those who attended Tablighi Jamaat meet.telanganatoday


Nawanshahr: All 18 Covid patients in Punjab’s first hotspot recovered

Punjab’s first Covid-19 hotspot district Nawanshahr today formally cured all infected patients after the result of the last novel coronavirus patient—a 16-year-old from Banga subdivision—came negative.As many as 18 patients have been cured and one death was reported from Nawanshahr  district. It has been almost a month  since the last positive case was reported from the district. The age of patients varies from a two-year-old to a 78-year-old man.All patients were given treatment at the isolation ward of the district’s 100-bedded civil hospital, which had no ventilator over the past two weeks, none of them needed ventilator care. indianexpress


Rohingya Muslims sinned by attending Tabligh event: Uttarakhand MLA

BJP MLA from Rudrapur Rajkumar Thukral has triggered a controversy by alleging that Rohingya Muslims attended the March gathering of Tablighi Jamaat in New Delhi and committed a sin by doing so.He went on to call for shootout orders against those involved in attacks on medical and police staff deployed in COVID-19 outbreak management.A video which surfaced on social media on Tuesday purportedly shows the MLA saying to a gathering of people, “50,000 Rohingya Muslims who were deported from Myanmar had been given refuge in our country because of some so-called leaders. Now, those Rohingya Muslims attended Tablighi Jamaat in Nizamuddin, committed a crime and sin that is unforgivable…”indianexpress


COVID-19: A diabetic Jamaat attendee dies of lack of food, medicine at Delhi quarantine centre

A 50-year-old diabetic patient died on Wednesday at COVID-19 quarantine centre set up by the Delhi government in Sultanpuri because he was denied medicine and was not given food on time despite several requests to the staff and doctors.Mohamed Musthafa, a resident of Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu, had been moved to the quarantine centre in West Delhi from Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital 4 days ago even before his final test results had come in.He had travelled to Delhi to attend Tablighi Jamaat event.“Mustafa had been requesting the doctors for diabetes medicine and for timely food. But, no one wanted to listen. He told me that he would be okay if he got medicine and food. And now I will not even be able to see him,” cried his wife Razia. They have two teenage sons.nationalheraldindia

Death of Jamaat attendee sparks protest at Sultanpuri quarantine facility


Offer taraweeh at home, avoid iftaar parties: Muslim organisations’ Ramzan advisory

Darul Uloom, Deoband and other Muslim organisations in the country have issued advisories, asking members of the community to maintain social distancing during the month of Ramzan which begins on April 23. The advisories have been issued in view of the country-wide lockdown and social distancing guidelines put in place to contain the spread of coronavirus which has claimed over 500 lives across the country.In its advisory, Darul Uloom said Muslims should pray at home and avoid visiting mosques so that social distancing, as ordered by govt, is maintained.indianexpress

'Treat Sanitation Workers Like Health Workers, Pay Them At Least Rs 20,000 Per Month'

A group of concerned citizens – academics, rights activists and others – have written an open letter to all minister in the Central and state governments, as well as society at large, to highlight the plight of sanitation workers during the COVID-19 pandemic and list measures that can be taken for their welfare.Given casteist foundations of sanitation work and how it is degraded in India, the signatories argue, workers keeping the country clean are being forced to work without dignity and protection even now. This is despite the act that for the first time, there is an active recognition of the people who are doing the work that society’s hygiene rests on.“We have to work and build on the understanding that hygiene and wellbeing are complementary, even identical, just as the tasks of sanitary workers and doctors are complementary, and their purposes identical,” the statement says. This understanding, though, will not be built overnight – the state and society must take certain active steps to ensure that sanitation workers get their due. This includes ensuring they are classified as health workers and paid a minimum wage of at least Rs 20,000 per month, and removal of contractualisation, statement says. Privileged citizens must also play an active role in sanitation requirements, such as ensuring their garbage is segregated and composting their waste, the signatories argue.thewire



AMU doctor suspended for negligence, 46 medical staff sent to quarantine

Following death of Aligarh’s first COVID-19 patient on Tuesday, negligence of a doctor of AMU’s Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College has forced 46 staff members of the hospital, including 16 doctors, to be quarantined.The doctor, Anjum Mirza Chugtai, was instrumental in getting a suspected 55-year old COVID-19 patient with breathing problems admitted to AMU hospital’s general trauma ward late on Sunday night. Later, he tested positive and succumbed to disease.AMU registrar Abdul Hamid has suspended Dr Chugtai, an assistant professor in department of medicine with immediate effect for “negligence in duty and violating COVID 19 protocol”.A departmental enquiry has also been instituted. Tribune


New corona testing machine installed at AMU medical college

Aligarh:A new testing machine for Covid-19 has been given to the Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College of AMU by the Uttar Pradesh government.It would now be possible to test 200 samples daily. The machine costs Rs 15 lakh.IANS"More than 3,000 free tests of COVID-19 samples have been conducted so far at JNMCH, and the new machine will surely boost our capacity to dispose of more samples of COVID-19", Prof Shahid Siddiqui (Principal, JNMCH) said.



Govt  expands lockdown exemption list: Shops of educational books, electric fans, forestry items added

New Delhi :A day after “select necessary activities” were allowed to be open, Ministry of Home Affairs Tuesday issued new guidelines for the nationwide lockdown extended till May 3 to contain the transmission of the novel coronavirus.In its revised list, the government has exempted additional agricultural and forestry items, shops of educational books for students and shops of electric fans from lockdown restrictions, besides allowing inter and intra state movement of planting materials and honey bee colonies, honey and other beehive products. The new list of exemptions also include sign-on and sign-off of Indian seafarers at Indian ports and their movement.indianexpress


Maha govt finds 'discrepancies' in report by Central team that suggested Mumbai could have over 6.5 lakh coronavirus cases by May 15

Maharashtra, as per the number of cases is worst affected area, with over 5200 people having tested positive so far. Within the state, a large majority of the cases have been from Mumbai.As of Wednesday afternoon, over 3,450 cases have been detected in the city. And while this seems like a high number, according to a report by The Hindu, it might soon multiply manifold. According to a 5-member team from Centre, number can rise to an estimated 42,604 by the end of April, and can go up to 6,56,407 by May 15. The data had reportedly caught the state government off guard, and they have since contested the methodology and tools used to arrive at these figures. Countering this, the Maharashtra government too made a presentation pointing out data discrepancies. However, the state has not entirely dismissed the data, and is reportedly structuring its response to the viral outbreak keeping the numbers in mind.freepressjournal


DU Teachers Allege VC Diverted Rs 4-Crore Staff Donations From PMNRF to PM CARES

 Delhi University Teachers’ Association has alleged that DU vice-chancellor Yogesh Tyagi has diverted a little over Rs 4 crore that had been collected from staff members for the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund (PMNRF) to the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance & Relief in Emergency Situations (PM-CARES) fund without any consultation. In a letter to the VC, the DUTA president Rajib Ray and secretary Rajinder Singh said that the university registrar had requested all DU employees to contribute one day’s salary (basic + dearness allowance) from the month of March, 2020, to VC’s Relief Fund “from where the consolidated contribution will then be submitted to the PMNRF”. Several DU teachers with whom The Wire spoke confirmed that none of them was consulted before the university took this decision. “We initially thought that Tyagi may have made the donation to PM-CARES from some other university fund. But then his message to the alumni confirmed that our donations to PMNRF were routed to PM-CARES,” a professor at DU told The Wire. thewire

Newspapers as fomites? Rumours, declining ad revenues hit media hard as newsrooms double efforts to cover coronavirus

 At a time when the media industry was already struggling with revenue models and dropping revenues from advertisements, coronavirus pandemic has hit the industry harder. The pandemic is bad news for businesses across the board as it disrupts production and supply chains. But the media is facing a double whammy as the pandemic further throttled ad revenues, when even established media moguls were having a tough time figuring out a profitable business model.At a time when the lion’s share of digital advertising dollars is sucked up by internet giants like Google and Facebook, rumours that newspapers could be potential carriers of the virus have shrunk the subscription revenue that had kept newspapers in print despite many hardships in the past. International News Media Association (INMA), an influential body that globally promotes best practices for news media, has collected current scientific research on the safety of newspapers that clearly demonstrates that newspapers are safe. The virus loses its potency drastically when exposed to air without a host; the virus loses half its potency every 66 minutes.As revenue for businesses fell due to the pandemic, advertising revenue for newspapers (and their digital versions) was wiped off overnight. The situation can be understood from the fact that the cash-strapped media industry recently sought immediate clearance of advertising dues by DAVP and other state-owned bodies to help companies tide over cash flow problems and avert possible job losses, Economic Times reported.Media revenue was further hit as the pandemic has additionally ground to halt the traditional drivers of media consumption, like sports, films and entertainment. The Print quoted sources in the industry to highlight how media houses were dealing with diminishing revenues. The report said, that while Hindustan Times cut the number of pages to absorb losses, while magazines like Outlook had to suspend their print edition and go digital completely. Indian Express, which had earlier gone behind a paywall has made news free for its readers and is also sending PDFs to subscribers.


Lockdown leaves Bihar’s litchi growers in the lurch

The prolonged lockdown to contain the coronavirus pandemic has put Bihar’s more than 45,000 litchi farmers in a bind as they stare at imminent losses amounting to almost ₹1,000 crore this year. Bihar, especially Muzaffarpur district, accounts for almost 40% of the total litchi production in the country.“Last year our litchi business was severely hit by rumours that its consumption leads to encephalitis which caused the deaths of children,” litchi farmer Bhola Nath Jha told The Hindu over telephone. “And this year, the prolonged lockdown is threatening huge losses for us…we appeal to the government to look at our problem immediately,” he added. Mr. Jha owns several large litchi orchards with 600 trees in north Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district. He estimates that the losses to the State’s litchi farmers this year would likely amount to not less than ₹1,000 crore. Litchi is grown on over 32,000 hectares of land in the State with annual production totalling to about 0.30 million metric tonnes.The Hindu


Softbank-backed OYO to cut pay of all employees in India

New Delhi :Softbank Group-backed OYO Hotels and Homes has cut the salaries of all employees by 25% for four months starting April and also sent some of its people on leave with limited benefits, according to an internal memo seen by Reuters.The move comes soon after OYO furloughed thousands of its international employees earlier in April after the coronavirus outbreak brought global travel to a halt, wreaking havoc in the hospitality sector.“Our company is taking a difficult but necessary step for India, whereby we are asking all OYOprenuers to accept a reduction in their fixed compensation by 25%,” the company’s Chief Executive Rohit Kapoor said in a note on Wednesday,article


Police personnel attacked in Aligarh while trying to close shops; one cop injured

Aligarh (UP): Police were attacked in Aligarh on Wednesday morning when they tried to close the shops in the district. One police man was injured in the incident which took place in Bhojpura area in Kotwali police circle.According to reports, a large number of people had come to the vegetable market when a police team reached there and asked the vendors to shut their shops at specified time. The people there started pelting stones at the police team and additional forces were rushed in to control the situation. IANS


No gadgets, no studies: What online classes mean for 16 lakh poor students in Delhi schools

New Delhi: Nearly 16 lakh children from poor families studying in government and municipal schools in the national capital are staring at disruptions in their studies without access to mobiles, internet and laptops or desktops, even as privileged students from private schools are taking online classes amid the coronavirus lockdown.AAP-run Delhi govt has started teaching Class 12 students on Zoom app, but most of the students in primary and middle schools are struggling as they have either no access to assignments, or find it virtually impossible to study mathematics and many other subjects through WhatsApp or other platforms. Municipal schools appear to be even worse off — authorities of the north, south and east zones of MCD might have issued orders on paper to school principals and teachers to assign work on WhatsApp, but the ground reality is quite different.theprint


Haryana screens its entire population for flu symptoms, says situation ‘not alarming’

Haryana government has completed screening its entire population for flu-like symptoms, following a 10-day exercise that involved more than 20,000 teams of officials.Amid a spike in the number of coronavirus cases in the state, Haryana had launched a door-to-door screening campaign on 10 April. Teams of village-level ASHA workers, along with auxiliary nursing midwives and, in many villages, anganwadi workers were asked to visit every household and gather details of anyone having flu-like symptoms. The exercise was completed on 20 April.theprint


Madhya Pradesh: Cop injured as locals attack police, doctors on Covid-19 check-up drive

In another incident of violence against corona warriors, a team of policemen and doctors were attacked by locals in Madhya Pradesh's Sheopur district on Tuesday.The team was attacked in Sheopur's Gaswani village when they went to check up on one Gopal Shivhare (21) who had recently come to Sheopur from Indore, one of the major pandemic hotspots in the country.indiatoday


Govt to conduct tele survey on prevalence of Covid-19, cautions against pranksters

New Delhi:The government on Tuesday announced that it will conduct a survey to gather feedback from citizens on coronavirus. The survey will be conducted through phone calls. Citizens will receive a phone call from ‘1921’ on their mobile phones.The government urged the citizens to participate in the survey and cautioned against pranksters calling from any other number than ‘1921’.HT





Palestinian body PLO says  Israel exploiting coronavirus to annex West Bank, East Jerusalem

Israel has been exploiting the coronavirus pandemic to expand illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and apply its sovereignty over the Jordan Valley and the Dead Sea area, National Office for Defence of Land and Resistance of Settlement has said.The body which is affiliated with Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) explained that Israeli govt intends to link the Israeli settlements around the occupied city of Jerusalem using a light railway.The report quoted the Arab Centre for Alternative Planning as saying that Israel is planning to construct two railways linking the Jewish communities with Al-Aqsa Mosque, pointing out that one of them will be an underground line which connects West Jerusalem with the Mughrabi Gate which leads to Muslim holy site.West Jerusalem municipality has recently revealed that it will construct 410 new settlement units as well as public facilities and a hotel in Jabal Al-Mukaber neighbourhood, south of Jerusalem, and link the new neighbourhood to the railway network.middleeastmonitor


Israel stops coronavirus tests in Gaza

Israeli soldiers conducting coronavirus tests in Gaza Strip have been ordered to stop by Defence Minister Naftali Bennett due to coordination issues, an Israeli newspaper has reported. According to Maariv, the Israeli government cancelled the initiative and claimed that Bennett himself was not aware of the army initiative due to a “lack of communication”. The initiative lasted for two days and only 100 samples were tested at one of the army’s bases on the fringe of the besieged Gaza Strip. Soldiers had announced last week that they would carry out 50 coronavirus tests per day on samples from the Gaza Strip at the army laboratory in Tzrifin. The lab is also conducting tests for soldiers suspected of having the deadly virus. As of 15 April, the total number of infections in Gaza stood at 13.


Saudi to hold prayers in Makkah and Madina ‘without worshippers’ during Ramadan

Makkah and Madina will hold the nightly Taraweeh prayers during Ramadan but only in the presence of clerics and staff who work on maintenance, the kingdom announced.“The Saudi authorities have decided to hold Taraweeh and Tahajjud prayers in the Two Holy Mosques, while continuing to suspend the attendance of worshippers,” Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais wrote on Twitter.  He added that authorities had also suspended “Itikaf” – during which Muslims spend last 10 days of Ramadan in mosques.Okaz quoted Al-Sudais as saying that the Tarawih prayers will only be attended by “the mosques’ general presidency’s officials, as well as sterilisation workers.”middleeastmonitor


Saudi to ease coronavirus restrictions for Ramadan

Saudi Arabia has announced plans to ease the lockdown during the month of Ramadan. Several cities within the kingdom were placed under severe restrictions following the coronavirus outbreak. SPA reported the lifting of restrictions yesterday to allow people more time to shop for essentials within the boundaries of their neighbourhoods.


Egypt: Muslim Brotherhood launches campaign to combat COVID-19

Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt launched the “One People” campaign to tackle the repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic.In statements campaign spokesperson, Ahmed Thabet said: “We chose the name ‘One People’ to emphasise the fact that we  belong to the same homeland and share the same future and destiny, and therefore, we must not be divided during the times of adversity.”“We launched the campaign and we will introduce practical measures with the aim of overcoming all obstacles and challenges.” He did not mention what measures would be put in place to face the virus.A Facebook page entitled “One People, we can” was created to help spread the campaign’s message. The group launches the initiative abroad because it is banned in Egypt.


Coronavirus: World On Brink Of 'Hunger Pandemic', Could Face Multiple Famines, Says UN Body

UN food relief agency has warned that the world is on the brink of a "hunger pandemic" and could face multiple famines of biblical proportions within few months if nations don't act now to avoid funding shortfalls and disruptions to trade due to COVID-19, which continues to spread unabated. "While dealing with a COVID-19 pandemic, we are also on the brink of a hunger pandemic," David Beasley, Executive Director of World Food Programme (WFP), said at a virtual session of UN Security Council."There are no famines yet. But I must warn you that if we don't prepare and act now -- to secure access, avoid funding shortfalls and disruptions to trade -- we could be facing multiple famines of biblical proportions within a short few months," he said.outlookindia


Virus originated from animals, no evidence of lab manipulation:WHO

WHO has said the novel coronavirus originated in animals in China, dismissing theories that it was produced in a high-security laboratory, Reuters reported. Several conspiracy theories have linked a laboratory at the Wuhan Institute of Virology to the coronavirus pandemic. US, which has repeatedly accused China of concealing the origin and seriousness of the pandemic, is investigating whether the coronavirus actually originated in the institute.scroll


Coronavirus | 2020 global remittances to witness sharpest fall in recent times, says World Bank

Global remittances are projected to experience their sharpest decline in recent times — 20% — owing to migrants losing jobs and wages because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Bank Group said in a report released on April 22. The pandemic and declining oil prices are likely to reduce remittances from US, UK, and E.U. countries to South Asia, resulting in a projected fall of 22% in remittances to $109 billion. This is in stark contrast to 2019 when they grew by 6.1%.In India, remittances for 2020 are projected to fall by 23% to $64 billion, the report, “COVID-19 Crisis Through a Migration Lens” said. The remittances grew 5.5% in the previous year to $83 billion.Over  2.5 million people around the world have been diagnosed with the coronavirus. At least 178,000 have died, with US accounting for about a quarter of all deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

WHO chief warns 'virus will be with us for a long time'

WHO said that there were "worrying upward trends" in early epidemics in parts of Africa and central and South America, while also warning that opening up global travel needed to be managed carefully."Most countries are still in the early stages of their epidemics and some that were affected early in the pandemic are starting to see a resurgence in cases," WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told Geneva journalists .


Trump Confirms He Will Sign on Wednesday 'Order Prohibiting Immigration' into US

President Donald Trump confirmed he would sign on Wednesday an order partially blocking immigration to the United States, in a move he argues would protect workers from the economic fallout of coronavirus.Immigration is a key issue for Trump's conservative base, which he is keen to energise ahead of the November election. "I will be signing my Executive Order prohibiting immigration into our Country today," he said in a tweet.Trump on Tuesday said he would stop the issuing of green cards -- permanent residency permits -- for 60 days, but would exempt temporary workers such as seasonal farm laborers. US -- with 45,000 deaths and more than 8,25,000 coronavirus infections -- is the world's hardest-hit country, and healthcare infrastructure in major hotspots such as New York has struggled to cope.About 22 million Americans have lost their jobs since the outbreak forced a global economic shutdown.The executive order on immigration will likely spark court action to reverse it, and has raised hackles among Trump's Democratic opponents.


Coronavirus-free Turkmenistan: 'We are not hiding anything'

Turkmenistan, one of the few nations in the world that has reported no cases of the new coronavirus, has insisted its official data is true and it is not hiding anything."If there was a single confirmed coronavirus case, we would have immediately informed ... the World Health Organization in line with our obligations," Foreign Minister Rashid Meredov told a briefing on Wednesday.


Pakistan's Imran Khan tests negative for coronavirus

Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has tested negative for coronavirus, after coming into contact with a philanthropist last week who subsequently tested positive.



No Muslim among 101 arrested over Palghar lynching: Maharashtra home minister

As the political blame game continues over the lynching of three people, including 2 Hindu seers, in Palghar last week, Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh downplayed a communal angle to incident.Deshmukh was quoted by ANI on Wednesday as saying there were no Muslims in the "list of 101 people arrested" over the incident. Deshmukh declare 101 people were arrested within eight hours of the incident and that their names would be released. He added that a "special officer of IG rank" in the CID was investigating the Palghar lynching.Referring to contentious video clips that apparently contained the word ‘Shoaib’, a Muslim-sounding name, Deshmukh pointed out that, "There was a sound heard in the video, 'oye bas'; people circulated it online and some called it 'Shoaib bas'."On Tuesday, The Quint reported that the videos about 'Shoaib' had been extensively circulated to fan claims of Muslim involvement in Palghar lynching. The Quint quoted Gaurav Singh, PRO of the Palghar SP, as saying, "no 'maar Shoaib maar' slogans can be heard in the videos".Palghar police had arrested a total of 110 people over the lynching, including nine juveniles.NHRC sent a notice to the Maharashtra police chief on Tuesday in connection with the lynching of three persons in Palghar district.theweek




FIRs lodged against Republic TV’s Arnab Goswami for inciting communal hate, defaming Sonia Gandhi

Hours after several complaints were registered against Republic TV head and anchor Arnab Goswami in Chhattisgarh for spreading communal hatred, inciting violence and defaming Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Chhattisgarh police registered FIRs against him under on Wednesday.Demanding “arrest” of the celebrated news anchor, several Congress leaders including cabinet ministers also lodged FIR against the TV journalist. One of the FIRs that was lodged at Police Station Civil Lines, Raipur at the behest of cabinet minister TS Singh Deo alleged that Goswami was guilty of defaming Congress president Sonia Gandhi and disturbing communal harmony.Deo alleged that Goswami in his show “Poochhta hai Bharat” aired on April 21 made inciting, inflammatory and defamatory statements during a debate on Palghar mob-lynching incident.Another FIR registered in Bilaspur also blamed Goswami for defaming Congress president Sonia Gandhi and inciting communal sentiments while debating Palghar mob-lynching case.Lodged by Pramod Nayak, district Congress president Bilaspur, FIR seeks action against Goswami, Republic TV and the company that owns the group under aforesaid sections of the Indian Penal Code.Another complaint lodged by Chhatisgarh Congress spokesperson Kumar Raja that was converted into an FIR at Kotwali police station, Raipur said that Arnab’s “debates are full of poison and have shattered all principles of journalism”.Referring to Arnab’s show, it alleged that Arnab was guilty of spreading communal hatred. “As declared by the Supreme Court of India, secularism is part of the basic structure of our Constitution and statements made by Goswami attack the very fabric of our Constitution,” said Raja in his FIR complaint. “Goswami made unnecessary and baseless statements against the president of Indian National Congress Sonia Gandhi whereas he has defamed the Congress party in the country to see that the other parties and citizens of the nation especially Hindus create communal violence against the Muslims and Christian community,” alleged Raja.

Caught on TV: Anchor Arnab Goswami blames Congress leader Sonia Gandhi for Palghar lynching


Palghar lynching: PIL in Bombay HC seeks probe by CBI or court-monitored SIT

Mumbai A PIL has been moved before the Bombay High Court, seeking a probe into the Palghar lynching case by CBI or an HC-monitored SIT.While the Maharashtra government has ordered a probe by the state CID into the case, the plea filed by Delhi-based lawyer Alakh Alok Srivastava seeks transfer of the same to CBI.







Withdraw FIR against J&K journalists, let media function in conducive atmosphere: Kashmir Press Club

Kashmir Press Club on Wednesday expressed concern over the registration of a first information report against journalists in the Valley and sought immediate withdrawal of the cases to allow the media to function in a conducive atmosphere.The cyber cell of the Kashmir Police on Tuesday issued a statement that it had filed a case against independent journalist and author Gowhar Geelani for “unlawful activities” on social media, threatening national security and sovereignty, “glorifying terrorism”, “causing disaffection against the country”. It also claimed to have received complaints accusing Geelani of threat and intimidation.“His is the third such FIR in a row in last few days,” press club said. “Many scribes in the valley have expressed anguish over these developments. KPC stands in solidarity with all the members of the fraternity.”The press club condemned the action against the journalists and sought withdrawal of FIRs against Peerzada Ashiq, Masrat Zahra and against Gowhar Geelani. .scroll


J&K: Editors Guild of India demands police stop ‘harassment’ of Kashmiri journalists

Editors Guild of India has expressed “shock and concern” over the actions of law enforcement agencies in Jammu and Kashmir in dealing with two Srinagar-based journalists – freelance photographer Masrat Zahra and The Hindu reporter Peerzada Ashiq. The guild demanded that the police cease harassing the journalists any further.scroll

J&K: Police Books Senior Journalist For Social Media Posts, Third in 3 Days

SRINAGAR:Mediapersons are in the crosshairs of Jammu and Kashmir police after an acclaimed author and freelance journalist Gowhar Geelani was booked for “causing disaffection against the country" through his social media posts. Geelani is the third journalist to have been booked by the police in the last three days. Earlier, a young woman photojournalist Masrat Zahra was booked under the stringent UAPA  for “uploading anti-national posts” on Facebook. Later, police filed a FIR against The Hindu correspondent Peerzada Ashiq for carrying what they termed as "fake news".indiatomorrow





4 militants shot dead in J&K’s Shopian

SRINAGAR: 4 militants hiding in a village in south Kashmir’s Shopian were killed in an operation of the security forces on Wednesday, according to the police.“The identities of the militants are being ascertained,” police said. 4 militants were encircled during a search and cordon operation at Melhora village of south Kashmir’s Shopian district on Tuesday evening.thehindu


SC adjourns hearing on plea seeking restoration of 4G Internet in J&K

New Delhi :The Supreme Court has adjourned hearing on petitions seeking restoration of 4G Internet services in Jammu and Kashmir in view of the COVID-19 situation with the centre stating that “militancy is still” being reported from the region and that the issue involved question of “national security”.Attorney General K K Venugopal told a bench of Justices N V Ramana, R Subhash Reddy and B R Gavai that it is a “very serious issue”. He submitted that when a militant was killed recently, a large number of people came for the funeral and that the militants were being made into martyrs.


J&K: 4 militants killed in encounter with security forces in Shopian

Jammu: 4 militants were killed in an encounter with security forces in Melahura area of Jammu and Kashmir’s Shopian district on Wednesday morning. “All 4 militants have been killed in the ongoing operation at Melhura Shopian,” J&K Police tweeted.“Two militants have been killed in Shopian encounter. Encounter still going on. Two more militants are still trapped,” J&K Police had said in the morning.


SC quashes order providing 100 per cent reservation in teaching jobs in scheduled areas

The Supreme Court on Wednesday quashed the January 2000 order of the erstwhile state of Andhra Pradesh which provided 100 per cent reservation to the Scheduled Tribe candidates for the post of teachers in schools in the scheduled areas, saying it was "arbitrary" and "not permissible" under the Constitution.A five-judge Constitution bench, headed by Justice Arun Mishra noted that providing 100 per cent reservation would be "unfair" and "unreasonable" and no law mandates that only tribal teachers can teach in the scheduled areas.PTI



Gujarat: 2 cops booked for ‘beating up’ 8 Dalits

Gandhinagar :Botad district police booked two policemen of Dhhasa police station in the district under various provisions of the IPC and Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act in connection with custodial torture of eight Dalits of a village who were arrested for alleged violation of lockdown last month.The FIR against the two policemen was registered on April 5 based on a complaint by one of the eight Dalits, Ankit Vaniya (24). The two policemen have been identified as police sub-inspector Brijesh Raval and assistant sub-inspector Alpesh Khuman.


MP: BJP legislators get key portfolios in Shivraj Singh Chouhan cabinet

Bhopal :A day after he inducted five ministers in his cabinet, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Wednesday allocated portfolios with BJP legislators getting the key departments.The important portfolios of health and home were allocated to senior BJP leader Narottam Mishra. Another important portfolio of agriculture and farmers’ welfare went to BJP MLA Kamal Patel. Madhya Pradesh is procuring wheat, chana, mustard and lentil from farmers in 49 out of 52 districts.Jyotiraditya Scindia loyalists Tulsiram Silawat and Govind Rajput were given charge of water resources and cooperatives portfolios respectively. Silawat held the health portfolio in the Kamal Nath government while Rajput was revenue and transport minister. Both had resigned as MLAs and will have to win bye-elections to validate their stay in office.


Assam hikes oil prices steeply despite global dip

A litre of fuel went up by almost ₹6 in Assam from Wednesday despite global crude oil prices hitting rock bottom.The State’s Finance (Taxation) Department issued a notification modifying the rates of tax on diesel and petrol.The notification by Principal Secretary Samir Kumar Sinha on Tuesday evening said the tax rates had been increased under a relevant section of the Assam VAT.thehindu


Facebook Buys 9.99% Stake in Reliance Jio for Rs 43,574 Crore, Largest FDI in India's Tech Sector

Reliance Jio, the telecom unit of Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), has sold a 9.99 per cent stake to US tech giant Facebook for $5.7 billion, or Rs 43,574 crore, in a deal that puts the pre-money enterpise value of Jio Platforms at Rs 4.62 lakh crore.The multibillion-dollar deal will make Facebook the largest minority shareholder in Jio Platforms Limited. Calling the partnership unprecedented in many ways, RIL said this is the largest investment for a minority stake by a technology company anywhere in the world and the largest FDI in the technology sector in India.The partnership will help RIL reduce its debt burden while it will help Facebook get a firm foothold in a fast-growing and massive market. The social media giant said it would focus on collaborating its messaging platform WhatsApp with Reliance's e-commerce venture JioMart to enable people to connect with small businesses.




Revealed: Bin Salman and Putin ignited oil crisis with ‘slanging match’

The oil price war between Russia and Saudi Arabia was apparently ignited by a slanging match between President Vladimir Putin and Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman during a telephone call last month. The claim has been made by a Saudi official.The call was on 6 March just before a vital meeting of the Organisation of the OPEC in which the major global oil exporters failed to agree on a deal to cut oil production in the face of falling demand during the coronavirus crisis. Shortly after the call, Saudi Arabia flooded the market with oil and caused prices to drop sharply.Saudi officials with knowledge of the call revealed the details to the London-based Middle East Eye on condition of anonymity. “Just before that meeting there was a call between Putin and Bin Salman,” explained one. “Bin Salman was very aggressive and gave an ultimatum. He threatened that if there is no agreement, Saudi would start a price war.”The conversation was very personal, he added. “They shouted at each other. Putin refused the ultimatum and the call ended badly.”



Pompeo: Annexation of occupied West Bank ultimately up to Israel

US  Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday that it was Israel's decision whether to annex parts of the occupied West Bank, and the US will offer its views on this to the new Israeli government in private."As for the annexation of the West Bank, the Israelis will ultimately make those decisions," Pompeo told reporters. "That's an Israeli decision. And we will work closely with them to share with them our views of this in [a] private setting."Pompeo also said he was "happy" that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and centrist rival Benny Gantz signed a deal on Monday to form an emergency coalition government, saying he did not think a fourth Israeli election was in Israel's interest.According to the joint statement, the coalition is to serve as an "emergency government" for an initial six months. During that time, no laws are to be introduced that have nothing to do with the coronavirus.aljazeera





PLO's Erekat: Netanyahu-Gantz coalition threatens security, peace in Middle East

Secretary-General of Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), Saeb Erekat, said that any Israeli coalition government based on the annexation of Palestinian lands will threaten security and peace in the Middle East.In a statement in response to the agreement between the outgoing Israeli Prime Minister and Likud leader, Benjamin Netanyahu, and head of the Blue and White (Kahol Lavan) party, Benny Gantz, to form a national unity government.“Any Israeli government coalition based on annexing more occupied Palestinian land will not only pose a clear threat to the global political system with regard to international law, but it will also threaten peace, security, and stability in the entire Middle East region,” Erekat said.


Israel holds Palestinian MP under administrative detention

Israeli military court in Ofer Prison yesterday issued an administrative detention order against 68-year-old Palestinian MP Mohamed Abu Teir for 4 months, Safa news agency reported.Abu Teir is from the occupied city of Jerusalem and was expelled from the holy city by the Israeli Interior Minister in 2010 to the occupied West Bank. Since then, he has been living in Ramallah.Despite the outbreak of the coronavirus in the region, the occupation forces raided his home on 13 April, searching it and re-arresting him. MP was arrested only six months after he was released from Israeli jails after he spent six months under administrative detention – detention without trial or charge.middleeastmonitor



Israel approves appropriation of Hebron’s Ibrahimi Mosque

Israeli government’s Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit approved the expropriation of Palestinian land adjacent to the Ibrahimi Mosque in occupied West Bank city of Hebron.According to Arab48, after Mandelblit’s approval, the Palestinian land will be under the control of Defence Minister Naftali Bennett.The land belongs to the Islamic charitable trust in the Palestinian city, which oversees the Ibrahimi Mosque.The occupation will use the land to allow disabled visitors to access a synagogue near the mosque.Israeli media reported the Israeli Ministry of Justice saying in a statement that the decision was made in collaboration with the Civil Administration.


Israeli forces  block main entrance to Qusra town, clashes with local youths

NABLUS, (PIC)Violent clashes broke out on Wednesday afternoon between Palestinian youths and the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) in Qusra town, south of Nablus in the West Bank.According to local sources, the events started after the IOF closed the main entrance to Qusra town with concrete blocks.Several young men suffered from injuries when the IOF showered them with volleys of tear gas grenades and intensively fired rubber bullets at them.Qusra town is encircled by several illegal Jewish settlements, including Migdalim, Esh Kodesh and Kida.


Iran launches first military satellite, say Revolutionary Guards

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards force said on Wednesday it had launched the country’s first military satellite which had gone into orbit.The powerful force said a “Messenger” satellite carrier was used to launch the Noor (light) satellite, without going into further detail on the technology used.The launch took place at a time of high tension with the United States over Tehran’s nuclear and missile programmes and months after Iranian top military commander Qassem Soleimani was killed in a US drone strike in Baghdad on January 3.


North Korea media silent on Kim Jong Un's whereabouts

North Korean state media on Wednesday made no mention of new appearances by leader Kim Jong Un, amid continued international speculation over his health following reports he underwent surgery. Officials in South Korea and China and sources familiar with US intelligence have cast doubt on media reports that claimed Kim was gravely ill after a cardiovascular procedure, while the White House said it was closely monitoring the issue.

*views, Articles, FEATURES*


Muslim countries with which India had increasingly good relations have become less friendly:Christophe Jaffrelot , Haider Abbas Rizvi

An Arab princess to Watch Out For:SEEMA MUSTAFA

It took influential Arab anger to make India notice hate speech:Karuna John

FIRs against Kashmiri journalists sends message that media exists at the mercy of security agencies;Ipsita Chakravarty

Minimise democracy, maximise interfaith distance, maintain aloofness from poor —may be the new normal:Suhas Palshikar

Despite a Lockdown, India is Cracking Down on Student Activists Who Were a Part of Anti-CAA Protests:By Hanan Zaffar and Majid Alam

Today's Muslim Is Being Forced to Shed His Identity and Don a 'Nationalist' Avatar:Nilanjan Mukhopadhyay

Most Muslims in Punjab’s Malerkotla have Tablighi link. But that’s not their big Covid worry:TARAN DEOL and URJITA BHARDWAJ

Tablighis May Donate Plasma to Fight COVID: Can This Be The Cure?

So what if Arnab Goswami quit the Editors Guild of India on air? Ayush Tiwari

'Terrorism' Charge a Lesson for Jamia Students that Democratic Protest Carries Heavy Cost:Ismat Ara

Creeping Communalism Is Now Turning Into a Full Blown Pandemic of Bigotry;Sidharth Bhatia

No COVID-19 Test Is 100% Right, so Their Errors and Results Are Both Important

Kashmir: Integration Through Distortion of Ambedkar’s Stand on Article 370:Mirza Saaib Bég

The Legal Charter of PM CARES is Unsound, the Government Must Frame Rules At Once:

Shreenath A. Khemka

India Is Scapegoating Muslims for the Spread of the Coronavirus:foreignpolicy

India's Hindu nationalist gov't 'targeting' anti-CAA protesters: Akash Bisht , aljazeera

India police accused of targeting Muslims in violence probe: Elizabeth Puranam , aljazeera


Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:13 PM). 


Post a Comment