06 May 2020

6 May News: Delhi Minorities Commission Chief says can''t be compelled to go police station for interrogation after over 3 dozen cops come to his House for questioning . RSS talks of new world order post-coronavirus pandemic. ‘Can’t Keep Migrants as Captive Labour’: Experts Slam K’taka Govt


6 May 2020: 12 Ramazan 1441: Vol: 12, No: 200


Can''t be compelled to go police station for interrogation: Delhi Minorities Commission Chief   

 Delhi Minorities Commission Chairman Zafarul-Islam Khan, against whom an FIR has been lodged for his alleged seditious and hateful acts, Wednesday told Delhi police as per the law the police cannot compel him to go to police station for interrogation as he was above 65 years of age, said his lawyer. “The law as per section 160 CrPC mandates that police cannot compel attendance of a person above 65 years age at any place other than their residence for purpose of investigation and interrogation. You are required as per law to question / interrogate Dr. Zafarul-Islam Khan only in his residence and you cannot compel him to go to any police station. "As Dr. Zafarul-Islam Khan's lawyer I am hereby placing on record that as per law you cannot compel him to go to police station. That would violate CrPC and amount to illegal police action against the rights of my Client,”said his counsel Vrinda Grover. Khan stated in the letter written to Cyber Cell of Delhi police (Dwarka), that he was a senior citizen of 72 years of age and it is risky for his health to report to the police station during these times of lockdown due to COVID-19. He further said that he was available to answer any question at his home during daytime. “I am a public servant and head of a statutory body, Delhi Minorities Commission. I am a senior citizen of 72 years of age and a heart-patient, suffering from old age- related physical illness that make me extremely vulnerable to COVID-19. I suffer from hyper-tension among other ailments. You are required as per law to question/interrogate me only at my residence and you cannot compel me to go to any police station. During these times of lockdown due to COVID-19, it is risky for my health to report to your office. I am available to answer any question at my home during daytime,”letter stated. Grover told PTI that the police have refused to give Khan any legal notice despite repeatedly asking for it. “Police came and asked him to come to Cyber Cell. They have refused to give him any legal notice despite my client repeatedly asking for a legal notice. They have not given anything in writing to him. We have asked for a legal notice. Till not the police have not got back,” she said. Khan said that his tweet on April 28 wherein he thanked Kuwait for taking note of "persecution" of Indian Muslims in the context of the northeast Delhi violence has "pained" some people and it was never his intention. He also accused a section of media of "distorting and fabricating" content of his tweet.  A legal notice has been sent to a news channel in this regard, he said.PTI

Over 3 Dozen Policemen Descend on House of Dr Zafarul Islam Khan Just Before ‘Iftar’, Called Him for Questioning

New Delhi:A 40-member team of Delhi Police Special Cell descended on house of Delhi Minorities commission (DMC) chairman Dr. Zafarul Islam Khan just half an hour before ‘iftar’ timings today.His family members told India Tomorrow that sleuths had allegedly come to detain Dr. Khan.His family members said they asked Dr. Khan to accompany them as he was wanted for questioning in a case of sedition registered against him. However, they gave up the idea of picking him up as local people in large numbers gathered in support of Dr. Khan.One of his family members said that the cops talked to Dr. Khan for about one and a half hour on different issues. “They have called Dr. Khan for questioning at their office on Monday”, said one of the family members.A neighbour who lives in D Block of Abul Fazal Enclave, Jamia Nagar, adjoining residence of Dr. Khan said that Dr. Khan lived there for the last 35 years and he was always very cooperative to everybody. “The fact that 40 members of the police descended on house of Dr. Khan indicates that the police want to terrorise Dr. Khan and his family members and all those who stand in the way of BJP’s agenda of suppressing Muslims by arresting each and every one who led anti-CAA movement and implicating them in the northeast Delhi riots in February this year”, said his neighbour. India Tomorrow

Delhi Police ‘Visits’ Minorities Panel Chief in Sedition Case


 Minorities panel notice to Delhi Police for ‘random’ arrests of Muslims everyday for riots

Delhi Minorities Commission (DMC) has issued a notice to Delhi Police Commissioner S. N. Shrivastava on the grounds that police officers have been “arresting young Muslim boys by their dozens every single day” from northeast district, and that the arrests have continued even after lockdown. Delhi Police has been arresting people from various parts of northeast Delhi in connection with the Feb.riots since last month. The notice, says that the “trend of randomly arresting young Muslim boys of the northeast district is not acceptable” and asks the police to desist from it. “These are random because a police force would descend on an area in early morning and randomly arrest all Muslim boys in the range of 20-30 years of age,” Zafarul Islam, DMC chief, told ThePrint. Islam said people have been arrested on the basis of CCTV footage, when they could only have been passers-by or onlookers. “Now there are thousands of CCTV cameras in every area and anyone can be easily picked  up and framed. Many families in northeast Delhi have sent away their young boys to their villages or to relatives fearing such blind arrests,” he added. The notice also cites allegations of police arresting individuals in order to extract bribes from them. “Some police officers are using arrests as a pretext to extract huge sums of money as bribes or ransom money which, if paid, will ensure the freedom of the arrested youth,” it states. Islam said the commission is yet to receive a reply from the police commissioner.Delhi Police has said it is well within its rights to continue arrests during the lockdown period. “No investigations have halted due to the lockdown, then why should arrests stop? These are arrests based on legitimate investigations,” JCP Alok Kumar, told ThePrint. DCM notice also alludes to videos doing the rounds on social media, of Muslim women allegedly from Mustafabad protesting against the arrests. ThePrint


DCW Directs FIR Against Online Abuse of Jailed Activist Zargar

Delhi Commission for Women on Wednesday, took suo moto cognizance of online abuse of Safoora Zargar, the research scholar arrested for her alleged role in Delhi riots. DCW Chairman Swati Maliwal issued a notice to Delhi Police (Cyber Cell), to file an FIR against the online abuse faced by Zargar.Zargar was attacked for her marital status and pregnancy , with people claiming that she is unmarried and that her pregnancy was discovered when she was lodged in Tihar Jail. Both these claims are baseless and false. Several people also linked this to Shaheen Bagh, insinuating that this is the “truth” behind Shaheen Bagh protests.Maliwal said that DCW has received multiple complaints with regard to abuse against Zargar.Condemning misogynistic comments made against Jamia student, DCW chairman said that while the Jamia student is facing court of law and is currently in jail, it “does not give right to anyone to outrage her modesty, abuse her and her family.”Maliwal has sought a response from Delhi Police by 10 May.thequint

Unrelated image, pornographic photo shared to target JMI scholar Safoora Zargar

The arrest of Jamia scholar Safoora Zargar has given rise to the usual misogyny and vulgar remarks that any vocal woman has to routinely face on social media. Zargar is an expectant mother – a detail that would rouse sympathies under normal circumstances. Instead, her pregnancy is the reason for the derogatory messages. Alt News had earlier debunked a viral claim suggesting that Zargar is unmarried.


Pregnant Jamia student in jail for 3 weeks, family says believe in judiciary

It’s been 3 weeks since Jamia Millia Islamia student Safoora Zargar (27), now in the second trimester of her pregnancy, was sent to Tihar Jail after being charged under UAPA for her alleged role in Delhi riots. Tuesday was the second time her husband has spoken to her since then. In a conversation that lasted barely 4 minutes, during which the call dropped twice, Zargar mostly enquired about the health and well-being of her parents and in-laws.Her husband, who did not want to be named, said he didn’t tell her about the trolling she has been receiving on Twitter, including tweets questioning her marital status vis-a-vis her pregnancy. Zargar’s peers and teachers also say she is “outspoken”, and a bright student. Her husband said: “We have to have faith in the judiciary. We hope we won’t be denied justice and that it comes sooner rather than later.”indianexpress


Former J&K CM Mehbooba Mufti's Detention Under PSA Extended By 3 Months

Public Safety Act against former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti was extended by 3 months , officials said.In a brief order, district magistrate of Srinagar handed over the continuation of her custody at her residence, hours before her present term under PSA was to expire.She was initially detained on August 5 when Centre abrogated special status of the erstwhile state.Having spent over 8 months in detention at 2 government facilities that were designated as sub-jails, Mufti was shifted to her home on April 7 as a partial relief to her. Daughter of Mehbooba, Iltija has moved a habeas corpus petition before the Supreme Court in Feb.challenging her mother's detention. The SC had issued a notice to J&K administration seeking its response on the plea and posted the matter for a hearing on March 18. However, the petition was not taken up for hearing due to the coronavirus outbreak.PTI


PDP Says Extension Of Mehbooba Mufti's PSA Detention An Act Of 'Stifling Voices Of Reason'

With government extending detention of Mehbooba Mufti under PSA for another 3 months, National Conference and PDP have described it as “unbelievably cruel and retrograde” and “stifling voices of reason.”PDP said since August 5, government has only deprived Kashmiris. Now the extension of PSA against Mufti is a loud alarm that BJP is fearful to compete with the only woman CM J&K has ever had, the party said commenting on its leader's detention.“Stifling voices of reason has become the norm for the current dispensation especially post illegal scrapping of Article 370. Therefore, extension of my mother’s detention doesn’t surprise me. Wishful thinking to assume that by smothering any debate on Article 370,the issue will vanish,” Mehbooba’s daughter Iltija Mufti said.Iltija also said that they haven’t received a copy of the order or dossier detailing new grounds of detention.


Pulitzer Prize to Jammu and Kashmir photojournalists proud moment for India; BJP playing politics over it

3 photojournalists from Jammu and Kashmir were elated when they came to know that they have been honoured with the coveted Pulitzer prize, announced on Tuesday.Dar Yasin, Mukhtar Khan and Channi Annad working with Associated Press were awarded this prestigious prize for capturing the last year's post- August 5 scenanrio in Jammu and Kashmir when the ruling dispensation did away with the special status of Jammu and Kashmir unceremoniously and split it into two federally controlled territories."My office sent me a YouTube  link and asked me to watch the announcement", Channi Anand told National Herald.He said that he was watching the announcement with his family when suddenly his name was announced for the award."I had a great feeling. I cried with tears of joy", said Anand.The prizes were announced by Pulitzer administrator Dana Canedy on YouTub amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

BJP Calls Rahul Gandhi 'Anti-national' For Congratulating Award-winning Kashmiri Photojournalists

BJP has sought to corner Congress over Rahul Gandhi's congratulatory message to three photojournalists from Jammu and Kashmir for winning Pulitzer prize and asked the opposition party to explain whether it considers the Valley an integral part of India or not. 3 photographers from J&K win Pulitzer for coverage after erstwhile state lost special status Dar Yasin, Mukhtar Khan and Channi Anand won Pulitzer Prize for feature photography.outlookindia


Hizb 'operational chief' Riyaz Naikoo killed by security forces

Srinagar:In a major operation, security forces on Wednesday killed top Hizbul Mujahideen militant, Riyaz Naikoo, in his native village of Beighpora in south Kashmir. Naikoo was the “operational chief” of outfit and had been face of militancy in Kashmir since killing of the young militant commander Burhan Wani in 2016. A senior police official said Naikoo was cornered along with another militant, in the village, surrounded by paddy fields and apple orchards. “He was on the run for 8 years. His killing is a major success,” the official said.The operation was launched by a joint team of J&K police, army, and CRPF late on Tuesday night. The forces even pressed into service excavator machines to dig up a railway track in the village over suspicions of an underground hideout.Naikoo had given the slip to the forces on several occasions in the past.He was killed in a residential building along with his associate, during the exchange of fire. A category A++ militant, Naikoo rose in the Hizb ranks to take over reins of outfit in the Valley in 2017.He replaced Zakir Musa as “divisional commander” who parted ways with the outfit over ideological differences and joined Ansar Ghawzat-Ul-Hind, al Qaeda cell that calls for implementation of Islamic caliphate in Kashmir. Musa was killed in an encounter in May last year.Naikoo is credited with holding Hizb ranks together and preventing an ideological split when al Qaeda announced setting up its wing in the Valley.

Heavy stone pelting in area around Naikoo encounter site

Heavy stone pelting is being reported from the area where security forces gunned down top Hizbul commander Riyaz Naikoo earlier in the day.While sources say that Union Home Ministry is in constant touch with the Jammu and Kashmir Police over the law and order situation, DG Dilbagh Singh has said that the situation was under control.In view of the encounter, mobile telephone services of private operators and mobile internet services remain suspended across the Valley.News of the killing of Naikoo led to some incidents of people pelting stones at security forces. However, the situation was handled with care, the senior officer said.


Al Qaeda offshoot appeals to Muslims to unite and fight against CAA, govt sees Pakistan hand: The Print

Al Qaeda in Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) Tuesday issued a statement, asking Indian Muslims, especially scholars, to unite and wage war against India as a mark of their protest against CAA, ThePrint has learnt.Sources in intelligence agencies, however, called it an agenda of Pakistan’s ISI to “divide India in these sensitive times”.This is first time AQAP, which was formed in 2009 by a merger between 2 regional offshoots of Al Qaeda in Yemen and Saudi Arabia, has raked up an issue concerning Indian Muslims. The statement in Arabic called Indian government “infidel” for enacting CAA and asked Indian Muslim scholars to start a fight for their “ummah”. A source in Indian intelligence agencies said,“This statement is nothing but a script of Pakistan’s ISI.

IANS peddles fake news? (Al Qaeda Urges Muslims To Wage Jihad Against India): theshahab


India to push for Pakistan’s blacklisting at FATF after Handwara & Keran terror attacks

India is planning to make a stronger case at the Financial Action TaskForce (FATF),to get Pakistan blacklisted for terror financing.ThePrint has learnt that India will base its case around recent terror attacks in J&K, particularly the killing of five security personnel in Handwara last week and the Keran operation before that, to showcase how Pakistan has been supporting terror even as countries are focussing on fighting the Covid-19 pandemic. theprint


After Arabs, now Canada punishes Indian origin man for Islamophobia; terminated from job, school body

Days after several Indian expats were removed from their jobs in the Arab countries for displaying Islamophobia using their social media pages, Canada has cracked the whip on an Islamophobe by removing him from a school body and terminating his contract with one of the leading real estate companies in Canada. Ravi Hooda has now made his Twitter account private after politicians and civil society members in Canada reacted with outrage on his brazen Islamophobia. This all started with several Toronto-area municipalities granting local mosques permission to broadcast Azaan or call to prayer using loudspeakers during Iftaar every day during Ramadan. The move was widely hailed since Muslims could not gather in mosques due to coronavirus. Brampton too followed suit and decided to allow Muslims in its region to use loudspeakers for sunset Azaan. This did not go down well with a local Islamophobe, identified as Ravi Hooda, who launched a tirade mocking Muslims and their faith. He wrote, “What’s next? Separate lanes for camel & goat riders, allowing slaughter of animals at home in the name of sacrifice, bylaw requiring all women to cover themselves from head to toe in tents to appease the piece fools for votes.”Hooda’s tweet sent shockwaves across Canada, which is globally renowned for its liberal values. Peel District School Board in Brampton announced that it had removed Hooda as ‘School Council Chair’ and investigation was underway against him.jantakareporter


Saudi orders arrest of its citizen for abusing non-Muslim Asian expat

Saudi authorities have ordered the arrest of a citizen for abusing a non-Muslim Asian expatriate and asking him to embrace Islam, according to a report on Tuesday. A video went viral on social media showing the expat being insulted by an Arabic-speaking man, who does not appear in the clip, for having not embraced Islam and for not fasting, official Saudi Press Agency reported.A monitoring centre affiliated with the public prosecution examined the video which “shows the citizen’s use of abusive words against the Asian resident on the pretext of inviting him to Islam,” an official source at Public Prosecution was quoted as saying.HT


Activists say Twitter suspending Muslim accounts is ‘discriminatory, arbitrary’

new delhi: The suspension of Twitter accounts of Muslim activists and students by Twitter India has drawn sharp criticism and condemnation from the community.Activists and students spoke with raised concern over the matter. Following the suspension of accounts, a Twitter storm was also initiated to pressurise Twitter India to restore the accounts, which the activists have termed as “discriminatory and arbitrary.”The twitter storm going by the hashtag #RestoreMaskoorUsmani, was trending on May 3. Many activists and students participated in Twitter storm urging Twitter India to restore suspended account. Maskoor Usmani is a former AMUSU President whose Twitter handle was suspended on May 2 after he had criticized the arrest of Safoora Zargar, a research scholar from Jamia. “They don’t arrest pregnant women even in war zones. But Delhi Police has arrested @SafooraZargar, a Jamia student who is pregnant under false charge and a draconian UAPA,” Usmani had tweeted.twocircles


Fresh NIA raids, interrogations in Maoist case in Kerala has left families, activists concerned

Fresh raids by NIA in Kerala in recent days has left families of individuals accused to be Maoists perplexed, and activists alarmed, reports Najiya O for TwoCircles. NIA conducted 2 raids in Kozhikode district and interrogated 3 people including a journalist and 2 others in connection with Pantheerankavu Maoist case.All 3 were taken into custody for interrogation and later released on condition that they should be present at NIA office in Kochi later. They have reportedly refuted any links with the youth already arrested in the case.The raids have come barely 4 days after NIA submitted its charge sheet in the case, naming Alan Shuaib as the prime accused. Thaha Fazal is the second accused and CP Usman said to be absconding is the third accused in the case taken up by NIA in Dec.2019 from Kerala Police. The chargesheet reportedly alleges that the young men were active members of banned Maoist organization.Meanwhile, Kerala police have raided the houses of the brothers of CP Jaleel, said to be a Maoist and killed in a police encounter in Wayanad in March 2019.TwoCircles

No more Shaheen Bagh, Jantar Mantar, protests go online, indoors amid covid lockdown

New Delhi: From at-home hunger strikes to sloganeering from terraces, trending hashtags to video campaigns and online petitions — protests in the country have adjusted to the lockdown by moving either indoors or to virtual world. Several protests and mass movements across Delhi and the country were at their peak when the coronavirus threat slowly crept in, throwing normal life out of gear and pushing everyone indoors to ensure social distancing.However, voices still need to be raised against issues and injustice, say several protesters who have attempted to make their voice heard despite the lockdown.Innovative protest methods are being used not just by citizens and activists, but also politicians, who are experimenting with unique ways to target opponents, including observing fasts and hoisting the tricolour on rooftops.Over 1,200 workers from J&K who had completed their 14-day quarantine period at different camps in Punjab's Pathankot district went on a hunger strike for 3 days, seeking to be sent to their home towns. JNU students, who are at the forefront of various protest movements, are continuing their momentum by taking their agitations and campaigns online.Left backed AISA has launched various campaigns, including 'Attack Corona not Activists', 'Stop Student Witchhunt', 'Drop UAPA' and a movement demanding the release of Safoora Zargar, a pregnant activist arrested for protesting against the violence targeting Muslims in Delhi in Feb.over the contentious CAA.Politicians are also adopting unique methods to protest.PTI



Do not tweak labour laws for global firms wanting to move out of China: RSS affiliate

Even as ruling BJP and several state governments are keen on tweaking labour and land acquisition laws in line with the Prime Minister’s call to make India a more attractive destination for global firms wanting to move out of China, Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS), the trade union wing of RSS, has raised strong objection to such measures.Trade unions cutting across party lines Wednesday asked the Ministry of Labour to restrain the states from changing labour laws to facilitate the movement of multinational firms from China to India.


Plea in Delhi HC for early hearing on petition relating to violence at Jamia over CAA

 New Delhi:A plea was filed in the Delhi High Court on Wednesday for early hearing on a petition seeking setting up of a judicial commission to inquire into the December 2019 violence of Jamia Millia Islamia protests against CAA. The application for early hearing is listed on May 8. Earlier the high court had fixed for July, the hearing on main petition, in which notices were issued to Centre, AAP Government and Delhi Police. The fresh application was filed in the pending petition by advocate and petitioner Nabila Hasan in which she has sought action against the police for brutally attacking petitioners, students and residents of Jamia.PTI



JNU violence: Delhi court calls for status report from police on action taken on FIR

A Delhi Court has called for a status report from the Crime Branch of Delhi Police on the stage of investigation in the FIR registered with respect to the violence which took place in Jawaharlal Nehru University on January 5, reports legal news website Duty Metropolitan Magistrate at Patiala House Courts also allowed an application for early hearing which sought for an investigation into the violence.On 5th January, 2020, violence was unleashed at Sabarmati Tea Point in JNU, wherein the applicant, Sucharita Sen, a Professor at University, became a hapless victim and sustained serious injuries which even drew blood from the applicant's head.


Bois Locker Room: Delhi Police arrests admin of Instagram group that shared lewd photos, chats

Delhi Police Cyber Cell has arrested admin of infamous Instagram group chat 'Bois Locker Room', officials confirmed on Wednesday.While the arrested admin is a Class 12 student at a school based in NCR, he is not a minor. According to police officials, he had appeared for the Board examination this year. Sources said that the accused also revealed the names of other group members who were involved in sharing obscene photos of minor girls and chatting about objectifying them during interrogation.Earlier, the police had apprehended one juvenile who was a member of the group and questioned him, leading to the identification of several other members.So far, 27 members of the group have been identified of which 15 have been called for questioning since Tuesday.indiatoday



RSS talks of new world order post-coronavirus pandemic

New Delhi: Talking about a new "world order" and calling for action against those responsible for Covid-19 pandemic that infected millions across the globe, RSS, ideological mentor of the ruling BJP, took a dig at China, without naming it, here on Wednesday.In a rare interaction with the foreign media, through video link, RSS Joint General Secretary Dattatreya Hosabale said India was set to take the lead in the post-Covid-19 world."Hopefully, a detailed inquiry will be carried out to find the pandemic's origin, reason and impact. The world should come together to avoid such an emergency in future and create new regime to deal with it, involving responsible individuals, organisations and countries," Hosabale said. It is well-known that the virus originated in Wuhan province of China.The future world order was not going to be the same, RSS functionary said. Reiterating Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for "self sustenance" and Swadeshi Jagran Manch's "Swadeshi", Hosabole said self-reliance and Swadeshi would be the new reality not just for India but for all countries in the post-pandemic world.Hosabale said, "Bharat is eminently placed to play a significant role that would lead humanity to sustainable development, progress with a humane face, and durable peace based on cooperation and mutual respect. We need to accept this challenge and work patiently to realise a harmonious and integrated world where every 'local' will be equally important as the 'global'."A human centric holistic coalition is the prerequisite for emergence of a new world order."RSS praised Centre's handling of the lockdown by bringing it in phases, which acclimatised Indians to the notion and the urgency of the situation.  IANS


Delhi Govt Releases 4,000 Tablighi Jamaat Members After Quarantine; members named in Markaz investigation will be sent to police custody

New Delhi: Over 4,000 Tablighi Jamaat members who have completed mandatory quarantine and show no coronavirus symptoms can go home, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain said today.However, the minister also said Delhi Police can take action on those Jamaat members who are named in Delhi Police's ongoing probe into "Markaz" Nizamuddin incident in March. Around 900 of those being released from quarantine are residents of Delhi. A majority of the others hail from Tamil Nadu and Telangana. Delhi government is already in touch with resident commissioners and Nodal Officers of the concerned states to make transportation arrangements for their return, PTI has reported.NDTV /PTI


‘It’s Ramzan’ — kids of Covid-negative Tablighis ask Delhi govt why they’re in quarantine

New Delhi: It’s a difficult Ramzan for 75-year-old Rizwan Ahmed who has been in a quarantine facility for over 30 days, despite testing negative for the novel coronavirus three times.Ahmed and his wife Naseema, both members of the Tablighi Jamaat, were brought from the Nizamuddin Markaz to the Narela quarantine facility on 30 March. A heart patient with three stents, Ahmed ran out of his medicines a week ago.“The authorities here managed to arrange a medicine later, but it’s not the same as the one I have been having. I can’t take any risks with my medicines,” Ahmed told ThePrint.Ahmed’s son Khursheed Rabbani eventually wrote a letter to the Delhi government, as well as the Prime Minister’s Office. The letter, accessed by ThePrint, stated: “My father is heart patient and his all medicines are finished. He is without his medicines for the last many days. God forbid, if anything untoward happens to him, then who will be responsible for this serious lapse?”theprint


Delhi Police interrogate Tablighi Jamaat chief's son, seek details of 20 people who attended Markaz

 Delhi Police, on Wednesday, interrogated son of Tablighi Jamaat chief Maulana Saad and sought details of 20 people who had attended Nizamuddin Markaz in March as a part of his management team. The development came even as Noida police registered a case against five Tablighi Jamaat members for failing to declare themselves.  "A case was filed against five persons who had attended Tablighi Jamaat event in Delhi, for not reporting voluntarily. They were sent to quarantine after contact tracing and now they have completed it. They have been arrested and will be produced before court," said Harish Chander, DCP, Noida.


Chargesheet filed against foreign jamaatis, Allahabad University  prof

Prayagraj: Shahganj police have filed chargesheet against 18 persons including seven foreign ‘jamaatis’ and a professor of Allahabad University (AU), who was also named in FIR lodged against them under Epidemic Act and other relevant sections of IPC.7 Indonesian jamaatis had come to India on tourist visa and attended religious programmes at Markaz in Nizamuddin, according to chargesheet filed on Monday. HT


Tablighi Jamaat's Jaunpur chief dies in temporary jail

Varanasi: Tablighi Jamaat's (district chief) Amir Naseem Ahmad died at a temporary jail in Jaunpur district on Wednesday.Divisional commissioner Deepak Agrawal said that Ahmad, who was booked in a case for arranging shelter for TJ attendees, including 14 Bangladeshis, without reporting their presence to the district administration, was a heart patient and was hospitalised twice in the past nine days. Cardiac arrest is suspected as reason for death. Jaunpur police sent his body for post-mortem.According to the officials, Ahmad, a native of Firosepur in Jaunpur, had returned from Delhi after attending TJ’s markaj at Nizamuddin on March 9. After it, a batch of 16 TJ attendees including 14 Bangladeshi had reached Jaunpur. These 16 TJ attendees initially stayed at Bada Masjid in the city area. But, when police intensified a drive against TJ attendees present in Jaunpur district without informing the administration and police Ahmad arranged a shelter for them near Lal Masjid in Saraikhwaja police station area limits.TOI


Mumbai: Indonesian Jamaatis move civil court for bail

Mumbai:10 Indonesian nationals, who attended Tablighi Jamaat Markaz at Nizamuddin in New Delhi and arrested by Mumbai police on April 23, moved the city civil and sessions court for bail on Tuesday.The bail plea said the accused were also booked under charges of misuse and fabrication of passport which were false. The plea will be heard on May 8.Earlier, a metropolitan magistrate’s court in Bandra had on Monday rejected their bail pleas and remanded them to judicial custody till May 11.


To Appease Builders' Lobby, Karnataka Cancels Trains for Migrant Workers

Soon after Karnataka chief minister B.S. Yediyurappa’s meeting with builders and contractors, the state government decided to cancel all the trains it had previously requested for to ferry migrant workers back to their home states from today. This decision has been criticised by several trade organisations who said it amounted to forced labour and curbing the freedom of the poor.The decision by the state BJP government to not let workers return to their home state has come at a time when around 53,000 people had registered for travel back to Bihar alone. Fearing that such large scale reverse migration would impact construction work in the state, a number of builders and contractors under aegis of CREDAI met Yediyurappa on Tuesday.During the meeting, these builders and contractors are learnt to have assured the government that they would take care of the labourers, a responsibility most of them had not shouldered so far. A senior official was quoted by Deccan Herald as saying, “the labourers wanted to go as they had no job. Now that the work will begin, they will stay back.”


‘Can’t Keep Migrants as Captive Labour’: Experts Slam K’taka Govt

Illegal. Ill-advised. Disgraceful. Alarming. Inhuman. Unconstitutional.This is how legal experts view the decision by the Karnataka government on 5 May to cancel trains for migrant workers to return to their homes, hours after Chief Minister BS Yeddiyurappa met with leading property developers and builders in the state.The state government and its supporters claim that it is ‘unnecessary’ for the migrant workers to travel at this time, two days into the second extension of the nationwide coronavirus lockdown, and that ,in fact, migrants are needed to kick start the economy.However, such arguments cannot make decision legal, as it violates the migrants’ autonomy to choose when and where they will work, lawyers including Indira Jaising and Sanjay Hegde told The Quint.“Our workers are not slave labour, nor are they bonded labour,” said senior advocate Jaising. Even though these are illegal in India (and around the world), that this is what the Karnataka government’s order amounts to, in her opinion, and it too falls foul of the law. Advocate Clifton Rozario, who is the national secretary of AICCTU and has been working closely with migrant workers in Karnataka over the last few months, also argued that the decision of the state government to not allow the migrants to leave, “amounts to forced labour.”thequint


Govt can’t tell Supreme Court if it is paying 85% rail fare

The central government has declined to give the Supreme Court a break-up of the share of ticket fares the Centre and states would bear for migrants travelling home by train and also “what amount” was “being taken” from the workers now. Solicitor-general Tushar Mehta’s admission that he had “no instructions” to reveal the details came as the court heard a public interest plea.Social activist Jagdeep S. Chhokar, who had approached the court with the PIL, had sought immediate steps to help the thousands of migrants across the country return home.Chhokar also said migrants should not be charged any fare by govt.telegraphindia


No Data Of Stranded Migrant Workers: Union Labour Ministry Reveals In RTI Query

The office of Chief Labour Commissioner, which had ordered a count of stranded migrant labourers in the country last month, does not have any data on it, Union Labour Ministry told an RTI activist.Applicant Venkatesh Nayak from Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative said the data remains unavailable even after CLC, on April 8, directed its regional office to count within 3 days every labourer who was stranded after the lockdown. The circular issued by Chief Labour Commissioner (CLC) said a huge number of migrant workers were impacted due to lockdown.A number of them are stranded and placed in shelters, relief camps arranged by state governments, employers at work place, and also at some clusters, it said. Nayak said he filed a RTI application after waiting for almost 2 weeks for official announcement of the results of the enumeration exercise.PTI


Over 1 lakh migrants ferried in 115 Shramik Special trains: railways

Railways on Wednesday said it has run 115 Shramik Special trains since May 1 and ferried home over one lakh migrants stranded in various parts of the country due to coronavirus-induced lockdown.Of 42 trains which have been planned for Wednesday, the railways has already run 22 of them. 20 more trains are scheduled to run by tonight, it said.Till Tuesday night, the national transporter had run 88 trains for the migrant workers who were stranded at their workplaces due to the coronavirus lockdown and wishing to go back to their homes.All special trains have 24 coaches each with a capacity of 72 seats. But the national transporter is allowing only 54 persons in a coach to maintain the social distancing norms by not allotting the middle berth to any passenger.PTI

100 migrant workers held near Silvassa town of Dadra and Nagar Haveli for rioting

Seeking to return home amid lockdown, a group of over a 100 migrant workers turned violent near Silvassa town of Union Territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli on Tuesday night, police said.One hundred workers, most of them from Uttar Pradesh, were arrested from the spot for rioting and stone-pelting, an official said.The workers are employed at a yarn manufacturing unit in the Naroli industrial area and live in a labour colony near the factory, the official said.“Around 100 migrant workers came on roads late in the night and hurled stones at police. They also set ablaze a motorcycle and damaged a police vehicle,” SP  said.PTI


Ajmer Dargah pays for migrant trip

 A13th-century Sufi shrine in Rajasthan is spending lakhs of rupees to send back home by train and bus several thousand pilgrims and migrant workers stranded in Ajmer.The gesture by the famed Ajmer Sharif Dargah, where Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti lies enshrined, has benefited nearly 1,200 people from Bengal who had got stuck in Ajmer since the nationwide lockdown began on March 25. Most of them are pilgrims except for about 150 migrant workers who were employed in the Rajasthan town.telegraphindia


Lockdown: Gujarat Power Plant Worker Dies Trying to Cycle Home to Uttar Pradesh Village

New Delhi: Reports of migrant workers and their family members taking ill or dying while trying to reach home have populated news since the beginning of the lockdown, announced by prime minister Narendra Modi with a 4-hour notice on March 24.The latest addition to this list is 40-year-old Rajesh Sahani, who was cycling home to Kushinagar in Uttar Pradesh from Ankleshwar in Gujarat and died on the way.Rajesh’s body was found at around 6.30 pm on May 4 by a passerby on National Highway 8. Rajesh had attempted to cycle the 1,500 km distance from Ankleshwar, where he residing in the staff quarters of a power plant, to his native Bahuas village in Kushinagar.


Lockdown In Telangana Till May 29, Will Implement Seriously: Chief Minister KCR

Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao on Tuesday announced extension of the lockdown in the state till May 29 but with relaxations in rural and municipal areas. Rao, who was speaking on Tuesday night after a marathon meeting of the state cabinet, said majority opinion in state is in favour of extending the lockdown."We are extending lockdown in our state till 29th May. We will definitely implement it seriously. Night curfew will be there in the entire state. At any cost. There will be serious curfew after 7 pm,"he said.PTI


Lockdown: Public transport may resume soon with guidelines, says Gadkari

New Delhi: Public transport services may resume operations soon and the government is formulating guidelines for safe usage adhering to social distancing norms to check the spread of coronavirus, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Wednesday."Public transport is likely to resume soon... Guidelines will be there," Road Transport, Highways and MSME Minister Gadkari said addressing members of Bus and Car Operators Confederation of India through video conference. He said opening of transport and highways will go a long way in instilling confidence among the public and cautioned towards maintaining social distance and adopting all safety measures like hand wash, sanitizing, face masks, etc while operating buses and cars.On demand of a bailout for passenger transport industry, Gadkari said the government is fully aware of their problems, and will fully support them to mitigate their issues.PTI


‘What after May 17?’: Congress asks govt to reveal lockdown exit strategy

New Delhi:Congress party on Wednesday questioned the Centre over the criteria it adopted to judge how long COVID-19-induced lockdown will continue and also asked to reveal steps that will be taken after the curbs are lifted.Addressing a meeting of chief ministers of states where Congress is in power, party president Sonia Gandhi asked: “what after May 17?.” “After May 17th, What? and After May 17th, How?…what criteria is GoI (government of India) using to judge how long the lockdown is to continue…,” Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala quoted Sonia Gandhi as saying in video conference with CMs.The third phase of the lockdown ends on May 17. The first phase started on March 24 and ended on April 15. On April 14, the prime minister announced an extension of two more weeks till May 3.Former prime minister Manmohan Singh, who was also present at the meeting, said, “We need to know, as Soniaji said, what will happen after lockdown 3.0?”. “Soniaji has already pointed out. CM’s need to deliberate and ask as to what is the strategy of the government of India to get the country out of lockdown,” Singh asked.indianexpress


About 140 lives lost in 600 road accidents during lockdown: Report

About 140 lives lost in over 600 road accidents over course of 2 phases of the nationwide lockdown between March 24 and May 3, according to a report by SaveLIFE Foundation.Of this count, 30 per cent of the victims were migrant workers returning to their homes, said the report by the non-profit organisation, which works towards curbing road accidents in the country.The report said over-speeding on empty roads has emerged as one of the most common reasons for deaths across states.India accounts for one of the highest road crashes fatalities across the globe with annual 5 lakh accidents in which 1.5 lakh people are killed.PTI


What does PMO have to hide, that it rejects RTI on specious grounds?

(PMO has refused to make public documents related to PM-CARES Fund, ostensibly set up to receive financial aid from public to fight COVID-19. PMO also refused to share details of high-level meetings on COVID-19 including the rationale behind the decision to implement lockdown, besides the correspondence between the Ministry of Health and PMO in this regard, and files related to COVID-19 testing, in response to an RTI.RTI filed by Vikrant Tongad, founder of SAFE on April 21 was disposed of within 6 days by PMO. PMO refused to share information by citing a 2009 decision of CIC, which was later upturned, and a controversial statement made by the Supreme Court in 2011.


UP Jal Nigam hasn’t paid staff for 3 months but donated Rs 1.47 cr to Yogi govt Covid fund

Lucknow: On 27 April, the Uttar Pradesh Jal Nigam (water corporation) contributed Rs 1.47 crore to the Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund, set up by CM Yogi Adityanath along the lines of PM CARES fund.  The demand draft was personally handed over to chief minister by the corporation’s managing director Vikas Gothalwal and Urban Development Minister Ashutosh Tandon.The corporation’s top brass said the amount was equal to a day’s salary of its employees for the month of Feb.The only hitch: The nigam’s 25,000 employees and pensioners were not paid for February, March and April.    


UP hikes petrol price by Rs 2, diesel by Rs 1 per litre

Uttar Pradesh government on Wednesday approved a hike in the prices of petrol and diesel, a state minister said.Uttar Pradesh Finance minister Suresh Khanna said, "UP govt has increased the price of petrol by Rs 2 per litre, and that of diesel by Rs 1 per litre."The move follows the Centre's decision on Tuesday to increase excise duty on petrol by a record Rs 10 per litre and Rs 13 per litre for diesel. The hike, however, did not push up fuel prices as global oil prices have dropped to a nearly two-decade low.indiatoday


Govts imposing taxes in times of distress is 'cruel': Chidambaram

Governments must borrow to meet their deficits and not impose higher tax burdens when economic activity has ground to a halt amid the coronavirus pandemic, senior Congress leader P Chidambaram said on Wednesday after the Centre and the Delhi government hiked taxes on petroleum products.New or higher taxes are justified only when the economy is booming, the former finance minister said, dubbing the imposition of taxes as "cruel".Tax burdens on the middle class and the poor is actually taxing distress, he said in a series of tweets."Governments should give money to the people in times of distress, not squeeze and take money from the people," Chidambaram said."We have been pleading for cash transfers from the government to the bottom half of the people/families. Instead governments are doing a reverse transfer of money from the people to thegovernment! Cruel," he said.New or higher taxes will impoverish families further, Chidambaram asserted.PTI


Lockdown: India jobless numbers cross 120 million in April

A lockdown to curb spread of coronavirus has seen 122 million Indians lose their jobs in April alone, new data from a private research agency has shown.India's unemployment rate is now at a record high of 27.1%, according to the CMIE. The new data shows India's unemployment figures are four times that of the US.India doesn’t release official jobs data, but CMIE data is widely accepted.The country has been in lockdown since 25 March to curb Covid-19 infections, causing mass layoffs and heavy job losses.India currently has close to 50,000 reported infections.Unemployment hit 23.5% in April, a sharp spike from 8.7% in March. This is attributed to the lockdown, which brought most economic activity - except essential services such as hospitals, pharmacies and food supplies - to a standstill.Scenes of desperate migrant workers, particularly daily-wage earners, fleeing cities on foot to return to their villages, filled TV screens and newspapers for most of April. Their informal jobs, which employ 90% of the population, were the first to be hit as construction stopped, and cities suspended public transport.But protracted curfews and the continued closure of businesses - and the uncertainty of when the lockdown will end - hasn’t spared formal, permanent jobs either.Large companies across various sectors - media, aviation, retail, hospitality, automobiles - have announced massive layoffs in recent weeks. And experts predict that many small and medium businesses are likely to shut shop altogether.A closer look at CMIE’s data shows the devastating effect the lockdown has had on India's organised economy.Of the 122 million who have lost their jobs, 91.3 millions were small traders and labourers. But a fairly significant number of salaried workers - 17.8 million - and self-employed people - 18.2 million - have also lost


Security issue found in Aarogya Setu app, Rahul Gandhi was right: cybersecurity expert

A few days ago, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had claimed that Aarogya Setu mobile application, designed to help users to identify whether they are at risk of COVID-19 infection and provides people with important information, including ways to avoid coronavirus and its symptoms, is a "sophisticated surveillance system".Technology can help keep people safe, but fear must not be used to track citizens without their consent, Congress chief had said.Now, a French cybersecurity expert, who goes by the name the name Elliot Alderson borrowed from the popular TV show Mr Robot, has come out claiming that a security issue has been found in the app and added that the Congress leader was right about the app. "Hi @SetuAarogya, A security issue has been found in your app. The privacy of 90 million Indians is at stake. Can you contact me in private. Regards, PS: @RahulGandhi was right," read the tweet.Later, in another tweet, the cyber expert said: “49 minutes after this tweet, @IndianCERT and @NICMeity contacted me. Issue has been disclosed to them.”Earlier, Alderson had explored Iran's COVID-19 app to find out what data it collects and who it sends this data to. theweek

French hacker claims remote access to Aarogya Setu data

85 more BSF personnel test Covid-19 positive; total 154 infected

85 more personnel of BSF have tested positive for the coronavirus, taking the total to 154, an official said on Wednesday. These include over 60 troops, who were deployed for law and order duties in the Jamia and Chandni Mahal area of New Delhi, and six from the escort team of inter-ministerial central team (IMCT) that toured West Bengal to check Covid-19 containment measures in the state.At least 37 infected personnel are from the Tripura frontier of the force.A total of 85 new cases have been detected. The troops were performing essential and operational duties, a force spokesperson said.There were 69 cases of BSF personnel testing positive till Tuesday and hence the total stands at 154.PTI


India's COVID-19 recovery rate rises to 28.72 per cent

As many as 1,457 COVID-19 patients have recovered in the last 24 hours, taking the total recovery rate in the country to 28.72 per cent, the health ministry said on Wednesday. So far, a total of 14,183 people have been cured.Meanwhile, 2,958 more people tested positive for the coronavirus since Tuesday, taking the total number of confirmed cases in the country to 49,391, the ministry added.theweek


Tribal family ‘quarantined’ inside toilet in Guna school over virus scare, Congress taunts Scindia

Bhopal:A Sahariya tribal family was allegedly quarantined in a school toilet in Devipura village in Guna district of Madhya Pradesh. The family had returned from Rajgarh district on Saturday night and they were holed up inside toilet over fears of coronavirus.A picture of one of family members having food inside the school toilet has gone viral, triggering outrage.The opposition Congress took a dig at its former MP and now BJP leader Jyotiraditya Scindia who brought down Kamal Nath govt in March and said, “This is a picture from Guna, where a family has been quarantined inside a toilet. Those who used to threaten us to take to the streets on every other issue, have fallen in the eyes of the people.”


Kashmiri laborers attacked in Assam, 3 injured

3 Kashmiri laborers were attacked and injured by a group of goons in Assam, creating panic among people from the Valley stranded in the state.One of the injured, Muhammad Iqbal Dar, said they were attacked in Surkana-Nadiyapur area of Assam, in evening soon after breaking the fast.“They wanted us to leave from here. They attacked us for none of our fault,” said Dar of Chandigam village in Lolab.Other 2 Kashmiri laborers who were injured in attack are Abdul Hameed Gojri of Nagri, Kupwara and Asim Ahmad Mir of Khumriyal.“Attack has created fear among all the stranded Kashmiris who are doing labor work here,” said Dar. greaterkashmir


Kashmir: In Labour, Woman From 'Red Zone' Turned Away From 4 Hospitals

Srinagar: A pregnant woman who lives in a remote ‘red zone‘ village in south Kashmir was denied admission to four hospitals and was forced to travel more than 100 km in the night before she could deliver her child at a Srinagar maternity institute.The ordeal of the 30-year old woman from Taliwan village of Anantnag district started on April 1 when she developed labour pain at around 9 pm. The family rushed her to nearby sub-district hospital in Shangus. “The doctors refused to even listen to us when we told them that we are from the red zone. They said they will only admit my wife if we produce her COVID-19 report,” said Mubashir*, the husband of the woman.As per protocol, all pregnant women in red zones have to be tested for coronavirus infection. The young woman’s samples had been taken on April 29, but the report was awaited.


After Delhi’s ‘special corona fee’, many states hike liquor prices for much-needed revenue

New Delhi: After central government eased restrictions in the third phase of the extended nationwide lockdown, liquor shops in several states opened up Monday to massive crowds of people queuing up to buy alcohol.Delhi, UP, Maharashtra, Assam, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan were among the states that allowed the sale of liquor.In Assam, liquor shops have been open since Saturday. However, by Tuesday, many of the states had raised the excise duty on alcohol and now liquor prices are sky-rocketing. Delhi govt levied a ‘special corona fee’ Monday evening, raising alcohol prices by 70 per cent. Andhra Pradesh soon followed suit and hiked the price of alcohol by 75 per cent through an increase in excise duty. In West Bengal, the price was increased by 30 per cent while in Rajasthan, alcohol became pricier by 10 per cent. Given the huge scarcity of resources due to the coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent lockdown, this hike is not unprecedented. Excise duty on alcohol is the second or the third largest contributor to the tax revenue of states.theprint


Jamia Millia students asked to vacate hostels say they won’t leave, fear they will be quarantined

New Delhi: Jamia Millia Islamia’s notice, asking students to vacate the university hostels, has elicited a sharp pushback from the students, with many refusing to leave the campus. The university, in its notice issued last Friday, said the hostels are to be vacated “completely with no exceptions”, adding that the “the areas in proximity of the university being declared as hotspots, sealing the designated areas with no movements being allowed (sic)”.However, students in the Jamia hostels say they fear they will be sent to quarantine facilities before they can go to their homes.“They say they will drop us to our homes, but we fear they will forcefully keep us in quarantine centers with poor facilities for many days,” a 4th-year Bachelors student, who is residing in the university’s Allama Iqbal hostel, told ThePrint. The student did not want to be named. There are about 300 students still residing in the hostels.ThePrint


Darul Uloom allows use of accumulated bank interests of mosque to help needy amid lockdown

Muzaffarnagar: Darul Uloom Deoband has issued a fatwa, allowing the use of interest accumulated on bank deposits of mosques to help the needy during lockdown. Darul Uloom gave its opinion in reply to a question by a Karnataka-based manager of a mosque, who had asked whether the interest amount can be used to help the poor during lockdown. Fatwa department of Deoband, comprising Mufti Habibur Rehman Azmi and Mufti Mehmood, told manager that the bank interest cannot be used by him or the mosque but the amount may be used to help poor and handicapped, who are facing problems to earn their livelihood.PTI


No new clothes on Eid, give money in charity: Lucknow Muslims

Lucknow: As a clarion call doing rounds on social media and iftar table discussions at home, several Muslims in Lucknow have decided to not spend lavishly on Eid and instead of buying new clothes, give that money as alms to those in need. Deciding to wear their old 'best clothes' city Muslims that TOI spoke to, said that Eid which is a festival of community bonding following Ramzan--the month of good deeds and heavenly rewards, will only be that way in this health crisis, if people are helped.On the same lines, Imam of Aishbagh Eidgah Khalid Rasheed Farangi Mahali also appealed to fellow Muslims on Sunday asking them to spend 50% of their Eid budget towards the poor and lockdown struck."Instead of buying new clothes, my family and my friends have decided to collect that money and give it to those who are going through bad days in lockdown," said Abdul Hannan, a young student." Over and above that, this year instead of paying money as the Fitra (a fixed amount of staple food per family member or equivalent money given as charity before Eid) we will make siwaiyan and distribute to those who cannot afford to celebrate Eid," said housewife Suboohi Alvi.TOI


Mangaluru: Shops owned by Muslims to remain closed till Eid

Mangaluru: Textile and readymade garment shops, as well as footwear and fancy stores run by Muslims in the busy Hampankatta and other parts of Mangaluru city will remain closed even after the lockdown, which has been extended till May 17.KTA Youth Forum, an organisation of Muslim merchants, has decided to close their shops until Eid-ul-Fitr, which is expected to be celebrated on May 25. The move is aimed at discouraging Muslims from indulging in Ramzan shopping, which may cause crowding and lead to the spread of Covid-19.Mousheer Ahmed Samanige, president of KTA Youth Forum, said that many Muslim merchants across Dakshina Kannada have decided not to open their shops till the end of Ramzan.TOI


Old video from Pakistan viral as Muslim women caught shopping during lockdown in India

A video of burqa-clad women escaping from the first floor of a building is massively viral on messaging platforms. It is being claimed that Muslim women caught shopping in the middle of the nationwide lockdown were trying to flee from the police. A Facebook page ‘Jabir Hayaat Ansari AIMIM’ shared the clip with caption, “Drama drama and only drama. These women had stepped out for shopping during the lockdown. Police took out the shop owner and locked these women inside the shop.” He has now deleted the tweet however the same caption was used by several other users. According to Google maps, Tariq book store is located in Commercial Area Defence V Defence Housing Authority, Karachi, Pakistan. It is right beside Hot N Spicy. As per Google maps, both stores are located in Khadda market.A keyword search ‘Khadda market’ on Facebook led us to videos from 2015. One Jibran Waghani from Karachi, Pakistan had shared the same video on June 13, 2015. The clip has 1.8 lakh and over 5,000 shares. He wrote, “FIA chapa (raid) in Khadda market.  YouTube uploaded video and wrote that sex workers were fleeing after FIA raid at a brothel in Karachi.A 5-year-old video from Pak is therefore being shared with the false claim that Muslim women were caught shopping during lockdown in India.altnews


Uttar Pradesh: Refused money for liquor, man shoots pregnant wife dead in front of his son       

New Delhi: Amid the extended lockdown due to coronavirus pandemic, tipplers are getting it tough to abstain from liquor. In a shocking incident, a man in Jaunpur district of Uttar Pradesh shot his pregnant wife dead after she refused to give him money to buy liquor.After 42 days of lockdown, the government on May 1 allowed the sale of alcohol in red, green and orange zones with certain restrictions.    According to Hindustan, the accused killed his 25-year-old wife in front of his 4-year-old son. The man identified as Deepak Singh fled from the spot after killing his wife, but was later arrested. The incident took place in Bhatoli village of Sarpathan area in the district. The crime took place when Deepak asked his wife Neha to buy liquor and she refused. Later, a heated argument ensued between the two and Deepak shot his wife with a countrymade pistol. The man shot his wife on the head.  timesnownews


Can Gangajal treat Covid-19? Modi govt wants a study, ICMR says no

ICMR has turned down Modi govt’s “request” to conduct research on a theory that Gangajal, or water from Ganga river, could possibly cure Covid-19.Speaking to ThePrint, a source in ICMR said the agency has refused to get involved as it is focussing on Covid-19 battle and doesn’t want to waste time on other research amid the pandemic.theprint


African Swine Fever hits Assam: Over 2,500 pigs die due to disease, but no threat to humans found yet

  Even as the world grapples with the coronavirus pandemic, another viral disease has hit Assam. The state has been battling African Swine Fever with Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal recently asking officials to create a road-map to deal with the situation.The disease has already killed over 2,500 pigs in the northeastern state. eterinary and Animal Husbandry Minister Atul Bora said that the Assam government has taken the pandemic seriously as the mortality rate of AFS is very high.African Swine Fever (ASF) is an extremely contagious haemorrhagic viral disease found in domestic and wild pigs.


Covid-19: Delhi announces summer vacations for all state-run schools from May 11 to June 30

Delhi government on Wednesday announced summer vacations for state-run and aided schools from May 11 to June 30, amid the coronavirus pandemic, PTI reported. The government also said that students will not be called to the schools for any vacation-related activity.



As COVID-19 lockdowns ease worldwide, experts warn

Rome: From the marbled halls of Italy to the wheat fields of Kansas, health authorities are increasingly warning that the question isn’t whether a second wave of coronavirus infections and deaths will hit, but when — and how badly.In India, which partly relaxed its lockdown this week, health authorities scrambled Wednesday to contain an outbreak at a huge market. Hard-hit New York City shut down its subway system overnight for disinfection. Experts in Italy, which just began easing some restrictions, warned lawmakers that a new surge of virus infections and deaths is coming, and they urged intensified efforts to identify victims, monitor their symptoms and trace their contacts.Germany warned of a second and even a third wave and threatened to re-impose virus restrictions if new cases can’t be contained. German Chancellor Angela Merkel met Wednesday with the country's 16 governors to discuss further loosening restrictions that have crippled Europe's largest economy. Brazil for first time locked down a large city, the capital of Maranhão state.AP

Lockdown: How can schools reopen safely? UN agencies, World Bank lay down guidelines

Warning that widespread closures of educational facilities present an unprecedented risk to children’s education and well-being, the U.N. agencies have laid down guidelines for reopening of schools that have been closed in most parts of the world due to the COVID-19 outbreak. According to the guidelines framed by UNESCO, UNICEF, World Bank and World Food Programme, the best interests of children and overall public health considerations, based on an assessment of associated benefits and risks to education, public health and socio-economic factor, must be central to national and local authorities’ decisions to reopen schools.The guidelines note that while there is not enough evidence yet to measure the impact of school closures on the disease transmission rates, the adverse effects of school closures on children’s safety and learning are well documented. Gains made in increasing access to children’s education in recent decades risk being lost and, in worse cases, reversed completely.PTI


China says US has no evidence of virus lab leak;  Pompeo renews criticism of China over coronavirus

China hits back at the United States over claims by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo the new coronavirus originated in a lab in Wuhan, saying he has no evidence, amid renewed US criticisms.China could have prevented the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people around the world by being more transparent about the new coronavirus, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said."China could have spared the world a descent into global economic malaise. They had a choice but instead - instead - China covered up the outbreak in Wuhan," Pompeo told reporters. "China is still refusing to share the information we need to keep people safe."


US: Researcher on brink of COVID-19 discovery shot dead

A University of Pittsburgh researcher who was allegedly on the brink of a key finding in his study of the SARS-CoV-2 virus was found dead in an apparent murder-suicide, with his attacker found dead in a car near the crime scene. Professor Bing Liu, 37, was a research assistant professor who had a bachelor’s and doctoral degrees in Computer Science from the National University of Singapore. He was found dead with gunshot wounds to his head, neck and torso, at his home in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. The shooter was found in a car nearby, having apparently killed himself after the crime.His department posted, “Bing was on the verge of making very significant findings toward understanding the cellular mechanisms that underlie SARS-CoV-2 infection and cellular basis of following complications. We will make an effort to complete what he started in an effort to pay homage to his scientific excellence.”theweek


Nearly 200 genetic mutations identified in novel coronavirus: Study

Scientists have identified nearly 200 genetic mutations in the SARS-CoV-2 that causes COVID-19 by analysing virus genes from over 7,500 people infected with the disease globally, an advance that offers clues to direct drugs and vaccine targets.The study, published in the journal Infection, Genetics and Evolution, characterised patterns of diversity of the genome of the virus, highlighting how it may be adapting and evolving to its human hosts.The researchers from University College London (UCL) in the UK found that a large proportion of the global genetic diversity of SARS-CoV-2 is found in all hardest-hit countries, suggesting extensive global transmission from early on in the epidemic and the absence of single 'Patient Zeroes' in most countries.PTI



Israeli army targets Hamas posts in new attacks on Gaza

Israel has said it carried out fresh attacks on the Gaza Strip in response to a rocket fired from the besieged enclave.The Israeli army said it struck three positions belonging to Hamas, group that governs the strip, on Wednesday, more than a month after a precarious ceasefire went into effect.It added that the attack was in response to an alleged rocket attack which was fired from Gaza towards Israel, and landed in an open field.The attacks struck posts belonging to the al-Qassam Brigades, the Hamas military wing, in northern and central Gaza, according to local media reports. No injuries were reported and no Palestinian group took responsibility for the fire.There was no immediate comment by Hamas.


Israeli General calls for attacks against Hezbollah,Hamas

A reserve General in the Israel Defence Forces has called for “decisive” attacks against Hezbollah in South Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza Strip, Today’s Opinion reported on Tuesday. Zvika Vogel described the movements as a “jihad pandemic” running parallel to the coronavirus crisis.While a vaccine is being developed to get rid of Covid-19, he said, there is nothing being developed to get rid of both organisations. “If we do not beat our enemies,” he added, “we will pay a high price in the future.” Ex- army commander acknowledged that Israel is making “tremendous” efforts against these challenges, but the “pilots of the Israeli security institution are sleeping during their guard shifts.” He hailed Israeli attacks in Syria, but said that they are like “a bullet against the Jihad pandemic.” This, he said, would not end this threat, but would be just like a painkiller for a headache.


Hamas denies progress on prisoner exchange

Hamas has denied any significant progress in the indirect talks with Israel for a prisoner exchange deal.A statement released by the movement yesterday explained that the Israeli occupation was seeking to avoid the obligations contained in its offer.It added that Israel was seeking to mislead the families of its missing soldiers and undermine the morale of Palestinian prisoners and their families through and online media campaign.After recognising the current spate of fabricated news from the occupation, Hamas called on media agencies and other parties not to trust the output from Israeli sources. “In the event of any progress,” the movement said it will make an announcement.


Palestinians reject campaigns to normalize Israel ties

Palestinian factions on Wednesday called on Arab societies to combat campaigns aimed at normalizing relations with Israel."Those campaigning for normalization are a small fraction, who don't represent the Arab nation; they are affiliated with international parties like the US," Hani al-Thawabta of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) group told a press conference in Gaza City.He described broadcast of TV shows promoting normalization with Israel by an Arab TV channel as a "crime against the Arab mind". PFLP leader was referring to TV series Exit 7 and Umm Haroun, which are being aired by the Dubai-based MBC, which have drawn ire from Palestinians.


Saudi Arabia reaffirms Palestine remains its 'central issue'

Saudi Arabia’s cabinet confirmed that Palestinian cause will remain a “central issue” for Arabs and Muslims, according to a statement issue by a Saudi Press Agency today. During the virtual cabinet meeting chaired by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman, ministers also reviewed the outcome of an emergency meeting of Arab League foreign ministers, convened last week, that condemned plans by the Israeli authorities to annex Palestinian land.Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in announcing a deal to form a unity government, has said cabinet discussions will start on 1 July on extending Israeli sovereignty to Jewish settlements in the West Bank and annexing the area’s Jordan Valley outright.Implementing such plans “represents a new war crime added to Israeli record full of brutal crimes against the Palestinian people”, Arab foreign ministers said in a statement after their emergency meeting.


US ambassador  Friedman: US ready to recognize Israel’ sovereignty in W. Bank

US ambassador to Israel David Friedman has announced Washington’s readiness to recognize Israel's sovereignty in the occupied West Bank and the Jordan Valley within the coming weeks.In an interview with Israel Hayom newspaper on the second anniversary of moving the US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Occupied Jerusalem, Friedman said prior steps need to be completed first before the recognition."Washington does not plan to impose any new conditions for the move," he said.PIC


Israel to build 7,000 settlement units in West Bank

Israeli Defense Minister Naftali Bennett on Wednesday approved the construction of 7,000 settlement units in the occupied West Bank.The new units will be built in Efrat settlement in the Gush Etziion bloc in the southern West Bank, The Jerusalem Post newspaper reported. Israeli government has stepped up settlement building in the occupied territory in recent months, ahead of a plan to annex parts of the West Bank as of July under the US plan known as "deal of the century".International law continues to view the entire West Bank, including East Jerusalem, as an "occupied territory" and considers all Jewish settlement construction there as illegal.


MP Attoun calls on Muslim nation to defend J’lem,Aqsa

Ramallah, (PIC)Palestinian lawmaker Ahmed Attoun has said that Jerusalem and the Aqsa Mosque are going through the most difficult times of their history, especially during the holy month of Ramadan.Describing Jerusalem and the Aqsa Mosque as part of the Islamic faith, MP Attoun urged the Muslim nation to move to defend the holy city and its Mosque and protect their faith.


Amnesty board member asks why Germany hasn’t banned Israel for ‘eliminating’ Palestine

A Finnish board member of Amnesty International has hit out at Germany’s decision to ban the political wing of Hezbollah by suggesting that the ideology of the Shia movement is no different to the racist views of political parties in Israel, including those in the current govt.Physicist Syksy Räsänen took to twitter following the news of Berlin’s ban of the Lebanese group to say that, “Germany’s ban on Hezbollah is a perfect illustration of how terrorist lists are tools of power politics.”Explaining why he believes that the decision was politically motivated, Räsänen appeared to suggest that Israel is in fact guilty of having successfully implemented the very policy which Hezbollah is banned for merely promoting. middleeastmonitor


Israel missiles target south-eastern Aleppo: SANA

Syrian army’s air defences on Monday “confronted” an Israeli missile attack on Assfaira region in Aleppo’s south-eastern countryside, Syria’s state-run news agency SANA reported, citing a military source.The missile attack “targeted some military depots in Assfaira region, and the air defenses confronted the hostile missiles.”The source told SANA that “verification is underway to evaluate the losses left by the aggression.”In the past years, intermittent Israeli raids have targeted Syrian regime sites as well as military bases affiliated with Iran and its militias.


Parliament speaker: Iraq cannot fight Daesh ‘alone’

Iraq’s Parliament Speaker, Muhammad Al-Halbousi, said that Baghdad does not have the financial capacity to bear the cost of fighting Daesh on its own. Al-Halbousi explained, in an interview with Sharqiya TV, that “the terrorists’ movement over the past two days is due to the absence of international intelligence efforts.”He added that Daesh is a global threat and the international coalition has the ability and expertise to pursue terrorism.“We cannot bear the consequences and cost of fighting Daesh alone.”


Yemen: Saudi-backed forces retake Socotra’s capital as military reinforcements arrive

Saudi-backed forces fighting on behalf of UN-recognised Yemeni government retook the headquarters of the local authority on the island of Socotra, hours after it had been seized by fighters affiliated with UAE-supported Southern Transitional Council (STC).According to Sputnik Arabic, the STC carried out an operation to take the capital Hadibu and attacked the government compound building, raising the South Yemen flag over it. However it was removed and replaced with the official Yemen flag once Saudi-backed forces clashed with gunmen and recovered building.On Saturday the island also witnessed air strikes carried out by Saudis on several military positions belonging to STC forces.


Haftar and Assad accused of ‘joint drug smuggling operations’

Libyan National Army leader Field Marshall Khalifa Haftar and Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad have been accused of conducting illegal drug smuggling operations by Libya’s Interior Minister Fathi Baghasha.In a social media post yesterday, Baghasha alleged, “Haftar’s Army Investment Commission has been in collaboration with  Assad regime for some time, and trying to open an air and sea corridor through Libya, so as to gain illegal financial benefits.” The minister in Govt of National Accord referred to the Egyptian authorities’ discovery of over 4 tons of narcotics hidden in milk cartons on a ship docked at Port Said two weeks ago. The vessel came from Syria and was heading for the Libyan port of Benghazi, which is controlled by Haftar’s forces.


UAE: Dozen wounded in Sharjah residential tower fire

At least 12 people were wounded after a fire broke out in a residential tower in Sharjah in UAE on Tuesday night, UAE's Interior Ministry has said.Firefighters brought the fire under control in 48-storey Abbco Tower in Sharjah's Al Nahda area on Tuesday night, Sharjah's govt media office said.

*views, Articles, FEATURES*

Stop Indian media from exporting hate to Gulf:Gulf News editorial

Why Gulf States Are Backtracking on India: Sumit Ganguly, Nicolas Blarel, foreignpolicy

Aarogya Setu app is an arbitrary intrusion into privacy; bid to subvert Constitution through backdoor  ;Barun Das Gupta/IPA

Fact Check: No, Centre Isn't Paying for Migrant Workers' Train Journeys Home:The Wire Analysis

Feminist Solidarity To Sharjeel Imam: Shambhavi Siddhi, feminisminindia

Kashmir: Teenager Buried Discreetly in Graveyard Reserved for Unidentified Militants: Mudasir Ahmad

Longer Working Hours, Employee Productivity and the COVID-19 Economic Slump:Rahul Menon

Governing establishment in Centre and states needs to tap potential of local self-govt:Mani Shankar Aiyar

Diverting rice to produce ethanol during the pandemic is unethical:Siraj Hussain

Intruders, a house besieged, gunfire — 12-hour J&K encounter that killed Indian Army colonel

The world must halt Israel’s annexation and reverse its colonisation of Palestine: Ramona Wadi

Saudi newspaper says BJP government is targeting Zafarul Islam

Why coronavirus is punishing the economy more than Spanish Flu:NOAH SMITH

Annexation of Palestine began in San Remo:By Ramzy Baroud



*Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 10:51 PM)*


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