INDIA- ISLAMOPHOBIA, HUMAN RIGHTS & OTHERS
Court records statements of Babri Masjid demolition accused; Katiyar, Vedanti 4 other appear before CBI court
New Delhi : Today, Special CBI court in Lucknow hearing the Babri Masjid demolition case started recording statements of the accused, who include senior BJP leaders LK Advani, Kalyan Singh, Uma Bharti, Brij Bhushan Saran Singh and Sakshi Maharaj. BJP leader Vinay Katiyar, former MP Ram Vilas Vedanti and 4 other accused appeared before the court Thursday. The court, however, recorded the statement of only Vijay Bahadur Singh for want of time, and asked the rest to appear before it on Friday. After completion of the examination of prosecution witnesses, the court had fixed June 4 to record statements of all accused under 313 of CrPC. Under Section 313, a judge questions the accused on the basis of the evidence put before the court during the trial, and the accused is given an opportunity to explain the circumstances and the allegations against him. After its completion, defence puts up evidence in the support of the accused.indianexpress
Ram Temple design Tussle intensifies
Lucknow: Ram Temple design has emerged as a bone of contention among the seers ahead of birthday celebration of Mahant Nritya Gopal Das, chairman of Shri Ram Janamabhoomi Teertha Kshetra Trust.Birthday of Ayodhya-based Mahant (81) is usually held for entire week (4-11) June in the temple town of UP. A few top seers and Hindutva leaders from across India were likely to reach Ayodhya from Wednesday night till next few days. His birthday, which used to be a week-long grand affair every year with about 30,000 people from across India attending it including Yogi Adityanath, is likely to be a low-key affair this time due to the corona.Prominent seers of Ayodhya, led by Mahant Suresh Das, head of Digambar Akhara and ex BJP MP and trustee Ram Vilas Vedanti, have rejected VHP model, and demanded Ram temple should on the top of the world’s religious tourism map.They wish to see temple as high as 1,111 feet. However, Swami Vasudevanand Saraswati said Ram temple would be constructed on the existing model, the one approved by VHP 3 decades ago. He advised the Ayodhya seers to put a leash on their ambitions. “We have fought for the temple for 500 years. It will be better the temple is constructed and completed during BJP regime,” said the seer.freepressjournal
Delhi riots 4th chargesheet: 20 Hindus named in chargesheets for killing 2 Muslim brothers
Delhi Police Crime Branch Thursday filed 2 more charge sheets in connection with Feb.communal riots in northeast Delhi — this time, against 20 Hindus, charging them for the murder of 2 Muslim brothers, Hashim Ali and Amir Ali. While one charge sheet named 9 Hindus, the other named 11. In the murder case of Hashim, 9 Hindus have been named, while in the murder of Amir, 11 accused have been named by police. 2 brothers were on their way home on a bike on 25 Feb.when they were allegedly stopped by a Hindu mob, and then thrashed, stabbed, stripped naked, following which the bodies were dumped in a drain.According to police, accused men were part of a WhatsApp group, called ‘Kattar Hindu’, in which they discussed about “taking revenge from Muslims”. While the police have registered a case of riot, arson and murder with a comment intent against the accused, they have not been booked for criminal conspiracy (IPC Section 120 B) or promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion (IPC Section 153 A), like Muslim men and activists accused in other cases, where they have been booked for “hatching a conspiracy to start a riot”.According to the police, out of the total arrested, 700 are Muslims and 630 are Hindus. All the accused men are currently in judicial custody. Their bail applications have been rejected by the court, police said. theprint
Delhi riots 5th charge sheet: Man burnt alive by Muslim mob targeting Hindu properties, police tells court
Delhi Police told a court here on Thursday that a man was allegedly burnt alive inside his sweets-shop when a Muslim mob targeted properties of Hindus during the communal violence in northeast Delhi in Feb. The fifth charge sheet filed in connection with February riots named 12 persons as accused in murder case of Dilbar Negi who worked at the shop. Crime Branch filed charge sheet before Metropolitan Magistrate Richa Parihar who has put up the matter for further hearing on June 18.According to the charge sheet, a mob of Muslim community came from Brijpuri Pulia side in northeast Delhi and started rioting, targeting properties of Hindus and continued torching them till late night on Feb.24. One of the properties torched by the mob was a shop named Anil Sweets from where the police had recovered the charred body of Negi on Feb.26, it said.The chargesheet has been filed under various sections including 147 and 148 (rioting and punishment for rioting), 149, 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race etc), 302 (murder), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence of offence) and 34 (common intention) of IPC.PTI
Pregnant Safoora Denied Bail as Judge Finds ‘No Merit’ in Plea
New Delhi:A Delhi court on Thursday denied bail to Jamia Millia Islamia scholar Safoora Zargar, saying it found “no merits” in her application.Zargar, who took part in the anti-CAA protests, was arrested by Delhi Police’s Special Cell in pregnant condition amid the lockdown imposed in view of Corona outbreak. Dismissing plea filed by Zargar, additional Sessions Judge at Patiala House Court, Dharmendra Rana,, said, “I do not find merits in the bail application, it is accordingly dismissed.” The court, however, directed the jail officials to provide adequate medical aid and assistance to Zargar, who is pregnant.Opposing her bail application, the Special Cell submitted before the court that she had allegedly made inflammatory speeches and was part of a conspiracy to instigate communal violence, which had been planned weeks ago.Many on Twitter expressed anger over denying bail to a pregnant lady, who has been arrested for merely participating in the protests.Clarion India
In Meet on Trump Posts, Zuckerberg Mentions Delhi riots
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg held a video call with 25,000 employees in order to address issue that has divided his social media company for the last week – dealing with US President Donald Trump's controversial posts on protests against George Floyd's death.The transcript of the leaked audio, obtained by Vox’s Recode, throws an interesting revelation – the mention of an incident related to India. Responding to an employee’s concerns over moderation of posts instigating violence, Zuckerberg said, “If somebody is actually going to encourage violence... you don’t want that content up,” by citing an example from India.“And there have been cases in India, for example, where someone said, ‘Hey, if the police don’t take care of this, our supporters will get in there and clear the streets.’ That is kind of encouraging supporters to go do that in a more direct way, and we took that down.So, we have a precedent for that,”said Zukerberg.The meeting was to discuss how some employees see the president's posts as glorification of violence against American protesters, while others do not.While Zuckerberg did not quote a name, the content bears semblance to the speech made by BJP leader Kapil Mishra ahead of the northeast Delhi riots.thequint
‘Govt tells us, not to do politics during pandemic, but itself doing petty politics by arresting anti-CAA protestors’: Kolkata witnessed first public protest
Kolkata witnessed the first public protest by students and social activists in against of arresting of CAA protesters on Wednesday afternoon. Sporting masks and maintaining social distance, the protesters at Jadavpur 8B bus stand, Gariahat crossing and Nagerbazar, were seen carry placards saying – Sab Yaad Rakha Jayega (Everything will be remembered). Several groups of students and social activists, who had been an active part of anti CAA-NRC-NPR movement in Kolkata, were raising slogans and carrying posters, condemning govt’s move of continuously arresting dissenters, especially students. Some even carried posters demanding immediate release of political prisoners. Navamita Chandra, a former student of Jadavpur University (JU) said,“The present central government is a coward one. They are afraid of dissenters and hence have been arresting the faces of anti-NRC movement in Delhi, during lockdown.” She then added, “Ironically, the same govt has been telling us not to do politics during the pandemic. I would like to ask them, isn’t the arrest of protesting students, petty politics?”Chandra, a regular at Park Circus Dharna site, when anti-CAA movement was at its peak, accused govt of deliberately denting the image of activists spearheading the movement. Explaining the reasons to hit the streets during pandemic, Sampriti Mukherjee, a research scholar and member of AIPWA said, “We all had been raising our voice, digitally, when our fellow activists were being rounded up in Delhi. Now, that the lockdown is a bit relaxed, we decided to hit the streets, as public protest is the best way to get heard.”Mukherjee maintained, “We need to remember, that Delhi pogrom was instigated at a time when anti-CAA movement was a full-grown movement, with the Muslim women leading us. The pogrom was a well-planned one to move the attention away from the movement and then have the activists leading this movement as conspirators of the pogrom.” Activists, who couldn’t make it to the streets, registered their protests digitally. The theme of the protest was coined from Amir Aziz’s poem Sab Yaad Rakha Jayega. eNewsroom
Asaduddin Owaisi Alleges UAPA Meant to Target Muslims, Dalits, Tribal Communities
MIM president and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi on Wednesday lashed out at Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath over alleged arrests of innocent Muslim youths under UAPA during protests against CAA and NRC. Responding to a question, Owaisi said UAPA was meant to target and jail Muslims, Dalits and Adivasis. He said that Uttar Pradesh govt was not committed to the welfare of Muslims but ready to criticise and had booked Muslim youths under the draconian UAPA. Owaisi alleged that Muslim activists and youths, earlier booked under various sections of PLC and arrested for their alleged involvement in North East Delhi riots in Feb, were being re-booked under UAPA, which allows govt to proscribe individuals as terrorists and permits more officers of NIA to probe cases. A person charged under the Act can be jailed for up to 7 years.news18
Fired on in Delhi's Communal Violence, 4 Young Men Are Now 'Boys With Bullets': the wire story
New Delhi: Aqsa Masjid in Mustafabad, is one of north-east Delhi’s riot torn neighbourhoods, where the signs of February violence are still visible in the rubble and the half-burnt exteriors of shops. ‘It is Eid and I had promised Sameer I would visit. After more than 3 months in hospital beds, he was returning home.’ On Feb.22, two days before the violence broke out, Sameer, barely 15, had given his math exam.“I had dreams,”he recalls, “I would become an important man, an engineer, I would work abroad to earn.” On Feb.24, he was returning home for lunch from an ‘ijtema’ (religious gathering) at Badi Masjid in Sadar Bazaar when he was hit by a bullet. Sameer lies on a bed pushed against one side of the wall, in a white kurta, surrounded by his family – parents, two younger brothers and four sisters, all dressed for the festival. Zeba, at five the youngest, will not let go of his hands and wants to be photographed with her brother. His mother is ecstatic, “Eid is always festive but the joy I feel today, only Allah knows its extent.”In those long days of being totally bedridden, Sameer says he felt “angry even at my feet, I would look at them and try to will them to walk. I read the Quran, it gave me strength.”Adnan is 19, and he was the main earning member in the family, working at a small welding unit where Christmas decorations were manufactured. His story echoes what Sameer had related.On the same day, a few hours after Sameer was hit, Adnan stepped out to fetch some medicines for his sister. He only realised he’d been hit by a bullet after his legs gave way and he fell in a pool of his own blood. Hoor Bano, the mother of 16-year-old Saif tells me over the phone, “Ever since Saif was hit by a bullet three months ago I have not been able to breathe properly, now when I see him alive, standing, walking I tell myself nothing else matters.” Unaware of the violence that had reached his colony, Faizan had stepped out on Feb.24 to buy some rusks for his grandmother, when he was hit by a bullet fired by a Hindu mob. thewire
Delhi : 3 Jamia students get notice over social media posts
New Delhi: 3 Jamia Millia Islamia students have been served show-cause notices by the university administration for allegedly sharing a screenshot on social media and making disrespectful comments towards PM, and Jamia V-C and authorities. The posts, now deleted from a few Instagram and Facebook pages run by Jamia students, criticised VC Najma Akhtar for not speaking up against the arrests of a few university students during lockdown for their alleged involvement in the Feb.riots. According to the notice, sent on Monday by Jamia chief proctor Waseem Ahmed Khan, “a few anti-social elements have posted some offensive, indecent...content about PM on social media platforms... dragging Jamia and its administration”. Criticising the “baseless allegations against the Jamia administration” it accused the students of violating the university rules. Mohammad Haris claimed he had no connection with ‘jamiatimes1’, a page on Instagram, for which he had got the notice. “I run a different page where I did post the same picture. But a Jamia official asked me to delete it, which I promptly did,” BSc physics student said. In his reply to the proctor, Haris claimed those who made the alleged remarks “had no connection with me”.
Actor Abhay Deol slams ‘woke Indian celebrities’ talking about black lives but not minorities, migrants in India
Actor Abhay Deol has slammed Indian celebrities who’ve voiced support for the Black Lives Matter movement, but allegedly ignored highlighting similar injustices in India. In a message posted on Instagram, the actor wrote, “Migrant lives matter, poor lives matter, minority lives matter.”Abhay shared a picture of these words, handwritten on a piece of paper. He captioned his post, “Maybe it’s time for these now? Now that ‘woke’ Indian celebrities and the middle class stand in solidarity with fighting systemic racism in America, perhaps they’d see how it manifests in their own backyard? America has exported violence to the world, they have made it a more dangerous place, it was but inevitable that it would come back karmically. I’m not saying they deserve it, I’m saying look at the picture in it’s totality.”In recent days, Indian celebrities such as Karan Johar, Priyanka Chopra, Kareena Kapoor Khan and others have posted on social media about the mass protests that erupted in US. Several observers, including actor Kangana Ranaut and politician Omar Abdullah, have pointed out that the same celebrities who are posting about American problems rarely highlight similar issues happening in India.HT
Setback for Congress as 2 Gujarat MLAs Resign Ahead of Rajya Sabha Elections, Party Blames BJP
In a major blow to the opposition Congress ahead of June 19 Rajya Sabha polls for four seats from the state, two party MLAs have resigned as members of Assembly.Congress has accused BJP of trying to break the opposition party to win Rajya Sabha polls. However, ruling BJP dismissed the charge, saying MLAs were leaving Congress as they were "unhappy" with party leadership. Gujarat Assembly Speaker Rajendra Trivedi said Congress MLAs Akshay Patel and Jitu Chaudhary met him on Wednesday evening and handed over their resignations. "I have accepted their resignations. They now cease to be the legislators,"Trivedi told reporters in Gandhinagar.Patel represented Karjan seat of Vadodara while Chaudhary won from Kaprada seat of Valsad.Since March, 7 Congress MLAs have so far resigned, including Patel and Chaudhary. news18
INX Media case: SC dismisses CBI’s review plea against bail granted to P Chidamabaram
The Supreme Court Thursday dismissed a petition by CBI seeking a review of its order granting bail to former finance minister P Chidambaram in connection with the INX Media case.“We have perused the review petition and the connected papers carefully and are convinced that the order of which the review has been sought does not suffer from any error apparent warranting reconsideration. The review petition is accordingly dismissed,” said a bench comprising Justices R Banumathi, A S Bopanna and Hrishikesh Roy.
Kerala elephant's death: CM promises to address increased human-wildlife conflict, says probe focused on 3 accused
Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday assured that stringent action will be taken against those who are found guilty for the death of a pregnant elephant in Kerala’s Palakkad.People have expressed anger and grief after the visuals of the elephant, dead in Velliyar river, was shared by forest officials last week. CM said that “justice will prevail” and that concerns of people will not go in vain.Vijayan said that investigation is underway, focusing on three suspects.
Even elephant death used to spread hatred: Ahmed Patel
New Delhi;After two persons were taken into custody for the death of an elephant in Kerala, Congress treasurer Ahmed Patel has lashed out to people (read BJP leaders) who want to take advantage of the situation and misrepresent facts to divide the society.Death of an elephant in Kerala turned out to be a Hindu-Muslim issue, thanks to the indiscretion of a overzealous animal lovers and MP from the ruling (BJP.Maneka Gandhi kicked up a row by linking the death of a pregnant elephant to Muslims majority district of Malappuram in Kerala. However, forest officials set the matter straight informing that the incident had taken place in a village close to a forest in Pallakad, an adjacent district. Patel tweeted: “It is sad that the climate in our country has become so bitter that even in the tragic death of an elephant, some are trying to misrepresent the facts to twist into an issue of one community Vs the other?”Clarion India
Coimbatore: Madrassa vandalized near Madukkarai, inquiry on
Coimbatore: Unidentified miscreants vandalized a madrassa at Arivoli Nagar near Madukkarai on the outskirts of the city on Tuesday. Police personnel have been deployed at the madrassa to prevent untoward incidents. The madrassa, which comes under the ambit of Nazrul Islam Sunnath Jamath, has been closed ever since March 24 when the state government enforced lockdown to contain Covid-19 pandemic. The facility was used to teach Arabic to students. According to a police officer, a local resident alerted one of the office-bearers of the mosque around 8pm on Tuesday after he found lights were switched on at the madrassa. “When the office-bearer visited the spot, he found doors were broken open and books and fans were damaged,” the officer said. A Abbas, 40, president of the mosque, lodged a police complaint, following which police protection was provided to the madrassa.TOI
NIA conducts search in terror-funding case of banned CPI (Maoist) in Jharkhand
New Delhi;NIA has conducted a search operation in a terror-funding case of outlawed CPI (Maoist) group in Jharkhand, an official said on Wednesday.The search was conducted in the office premises of Ram Kripal Singh Construction Private Limited Company in the state capital Ranchi on Tuesday, he said.During the search, several incriminating documents, including cash books and bank account details, were seized by NIA, the official said.PTI
Straight Outta Ottoman: Kashmiri Parents Name Newborns After Turkish Series Ertugrul
Popular Turkish serial Dirilis Ertugrul has had such effect on its viewers in Kashmir that parents are naming their children after its protagonist, Ertugrul.Pediatricians in Kashmir say that parents are naming their newborns after Ertugrul, the lead character in Turkish historical fiction series, Dirilis Ertugrul. The adventure television series shows the life and times of people who laid the foundations of the Ottoman Empire.Ertugrul is the frequently encountered name in my outdoor department, says Dr. Suhail Naik, consultant Pediatrician and president Doctors Association of Kashmir. During winters Ertugrul caps with fur were trending in Kashmir, but at that time I didn't comprehend the basis of fashion. But now I also started watching it and I realise what is happening," he said. Ottoman soldiers and civil officers used to wear the slightly claret red headwear called fez.outlookindia
Beggar found with Rs 2 lakh cash in Andhra
Amravati:A beggar in Andhra Pradesh's Kurnool district was found with over Rs two lakh cash, shocking the volunteers of a NGO when they were giving him a makeover. Chinna Narasimhulu, who has been begging near a mosque in Dhone town, was found in possession of Rs 2,04,459 when members of Dronachalam Seva Samithi gave him a bath after the haircut and also provided new clothes on Monday. According to Samithi member A. Madhu 58-year-old had bundles of currency notes in the pockets of 14 shirts. Out of the total amount, Rs 77,000 were in the demonetised currency.NGO informed the local police about the money found with the beggar. Dhone Circle Inspector Subramanyam said their inquiries revealed that Chinna Narasimhulu alias Seenu is a native of Muneppagutta colony in Mahabubnagar of neighbouring Telangana.Seenu has been begging in Done for 16 years. The police official shifted him to an old age home in Kadapa and asked NGO to open a bank account in Seenu's name and deposit the money. IANS
Minor Earthquakes in Delhi-NCR May be Signal of a Bigger One Approaching, Caution Geologists
Amajor tremor may be witnessed in Delhi, experts warn amid a range of low-intensity earthquakes reported in the national capital region over the last one-and-a-half months. A day ago on June 3, a medium intensity earthquake of magnitude 3.2 occurred near Noida in national capital region (NCR). These tremors followed a league of 10 earthquakes that have been recorded by National Centre of Seismology between April 12 and May 29 this year in Delhi NCR. According to some geologists, these minor tremors could point to a bigger incoming earthquake, reports Express.news18
*SOUTH ASIA- INDO-PAK, J&K*
China defends Tiananmen Square crackdown as ‘fully correct’
Beijing :China on Thursday put up its customary defence of ruling Communist Party’s massive crackdown on students’ protests in Beijing’s iconic Tiananmen Square in 1989 in which hundreds were killed as “fully correct” and said the socialist political model it pursued is ‘right choice’. Hundreds of pro-democracy protesters are believed to have been killed on June 4, 1989 in and around Tiananmen Square in Chinese military’s brutal crackdown to quell the demonstrations against the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC).The massive square where the foreign journalists were turned away on Thursday became famous all over the world with an iconic picture of a young man standing before a row of battle tanks in a bid to stop them.PTI
De-escalation process underway: 2 LAC flashpoints are not in list of identified areas still contested
Chinese transgressions across LAC in Galwan and Hot Spring in eastern Ladakh surprised India because these areas, unlike Pangong Tso, did not figure among 23 contested areas identified by government through various mechanisms since India first accepted the concept of LAC in 1993. 11 of 23 contested areas on LAC were identified in Ladakh under the western sector, 4 in the middle sector and eight in eastern sector.A majority of these areas were identified during interactions between two sides over multiple meetings of India-China joint working groups (JWG) in 1990s, during exchange of maps for the middle sector in 2000, and comparison of maps for the western sector in 2002. 6 areas were identified over a period by actions of Chinese army on the ground, their transgressions recorded by the Indian side.The areas of Galwan and Hot Spring, sites for the current tensions between the two armies, do not figure in this list of 23. “Both sides have taken Galwan and Hot Spring to be ‘settled areas’ and, therefore, there was a bit of a surprise element in Chinese action,” an official said.
India, Australia Seal Deal to Use Each Other's Military Bases During PM Modi, Morrison's 'Virtual' Summit
India and Australia sealed a deal on Thursday to get access to each other's military bases, said India's Ministry of External Affairs, a pact that would clear the way for more military exchanges and exercises in the Indo-Pacific.The mutual logistic support agreement was signed during a virtual summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison. India has a similar pact with US which is seen as part of a broader security cooperation to balance China's growing economic and military weight in the region.The ground work for the agreement with Australia was completed last December in 2+2 dialogue between the Defence and Foreign secretaries of India and Australia. In the first-of-its-kind summit, Modi and Morrison also discussed coronavirus pandemic, cybersecurity and measures to boost trade. news18
*INDIA- CORONAVIRUS- LOCKDOWN*
Govt cracks whip on Tablighi Jamaat; blacklists 2,550 foreign members, bans entry into India for 10 years
New Delhi:Acting tough, the Home Ministry has blacklisted 2,550 Tablighi Jamaat members from nearly 40 countries who were staying in India during the nationwide coronavirus lockdown and indulging in missionary activities in violation of visa rules, officials said on Thursday.These people would not be allowed to enter India for 10 years, they said.This is perhaps for the first time that the government has blacklisted a large number of people in one stroke and banned their entry into India for such a long duration under the Foreigners Act.The action has been taken by the home ministry after various state governments provided details of the foreigners who were found to be illegally living in mosques and religious seminaries across the country."Home ministry has blacklisted 2,550 foreign Tablighi Jamaat members and banned their entry into India for 10 years," a home ministry official said.Almost all of these foreign Tablighi Jamaat activists had come to India on tourist visa but were engaged in missionary works, thus violating the visa conditions, the official said. The government has already decided not to issue tourist visa to any foreigner who wishes to visit India and take part in Tablighi activities. Delhi Police has also registered a case against Tablighi Jamaat and its office bearers. The head of organisation, Maulana Saad, is still to be apprehended by police. PTI
Burial of Covid-19 victims: PFI ready to serve, Pune civic body declines offer
PFI Pune unit claimed that it carried out burial of Covid-19 bodies on humanitarian basis and though Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has directed them to stop it, the organisation is ready to volunteer if the civic body permits.PFI and Muslim Mulnivasi Manch had taken up the task of burying Covid-19 victims as their relatives were not coming forward because of the virus fears.However, PMC decided to discontinue PFI’s service over an alleged controversy regarding latter’s affiliation with a discredited organisation, as alleged by former BJP chief minister and leader of opposition Devendra Fadnavis. Razi Ahmed Khan, PFI’s Pune district head, said, “As relatives were not coming forward for the burial of their dear ones, we requested PMC to allow us to do the last rites. We performed the final rites of 107 people, including Muslims, Christians and Hindus. The civic body has sent a letter instructing us to stop this social work, but we are requesting them to allow us to do it on humanitarian grounds as our members are trained to carry out last rites.”Dr Kalpana Baliwant, PMC assistant medical officer, who oversees and ensures the burial and cremation of those dead from Covid-19, said, “The organisation came forward to help PMC voluntarily. However after controversy, the civic body has asked PFI to stop work. We will continue to take help from another Muslim organisation Muslim Mulnivasi Manch.”
We carried dead bodies of COVID-19 patients on shoulders: Muslim taskforce in Malegaon decry mismanagement, lack of coordination
Malegaon: Highlighting the crisis faced by healthcare workers in Malegaon to fight rising COVID-19 deaths, Feroz Dilawar, a member of taskforce created to combat COVID-19, said that, “due to lack of staff our volunteers carried the dead bodies of corona patients on shoulders and then drove them to the graveyard.”Feroz has been part of Taskforce for COVID-19 from day one. “It was Dr Saeed Farani who came up with the idea of Task Force to help the people of Malegaon as the situation was getting worse,” he said.The administration claimed that they have been planning to gear up with the situation but as per taskforce members, there has been no such implementation on the ground. “Task force consists of students and all other common people from different areas. We made team leaders for better management,” Feroz said.Feroz said that stigma attached to coronavirus is making doctors wary of going near the patients. “Doctors fear to go near the patients. They throw the medicine towards the patient,” he said, adding, “When doctors are in such fear, how can we expect proper cleanliness and sanitation. Sweepers also fear going inside wards.”Another task force member Mubasshir Mushtaq said that, “it was to effectively deal with the situation in collaboration with the local administration and to create awareness among the people that the Task Force came into existence.”Mushtaq said that the situation was such that the doctors and patients didn’t have drinking water.TwoCircles
50 booked for attending funeral in Gujarat: Police
Vadodra: Over 50 people were booked for attending the funeral of a 46-year-old man who tested positive for Covid-19 a day after his death. 50 include members of his family, villagers and employees of the cremation ground where the final rites took place. The man, a clerk with Panch-mahals forest department, died on May 29 and was brought to his village Mota Sonela in Mahisagar where his final rites were performed the next day.All those booked are now under home quarantine and the entire neighbourhood is under containment. indianexpress
New report by NDMJ-SASY reveals surge in atrocities against Dalits, Adivasis amid COVID-19 lockdown
National Dalit Movement for Justice (NDMJ), headquartered in New Delhi, has released a detailed report on increasing human rights violation cases against Dalits, Adivasis and other marginalized communities of India during COVID-19 lockdown. In April and May alone during the nationwide lockdown, NDMJ and SASY intervened in 67 cases of caste and gender-based violence, the nature of these cases revealing layered untouchability through socio-economic boycott and physical assault as the main cause. Reports of the murder of Dalit men, brutal physical attacks on Dalit families, rape and murder of minors, domestic violence have flooded media sections covering the community. Also, cases of Dalit women being branded witches and their heads tonsured, forced to consume human waste, honour killings and death of sanitation workers were recorded by the Dalit monitoring agency.The more shocking news of negligence in treating Corona positive patients surfaced from Tamil Nadu, with 39 cases of caste atrocities in the state during the lockdown in which SASY intervened legally. Cases of serious physical assaults and Ambedkar statue desecration came from Bihar, UP and Haryana’s semi and rural areas, with majority victims among agricultural labourers. In these instances were also examples where Dalits were denied to harvest crops due to the fear of spreading Coronavirus and were assaulted by landowners and influential farmers.NDMJ has urged the respective state governments to register FIRs under SC/ST PoA Act and violation of curfew rules so that the culprits can be arrested under Goondas Act in cases for the atrocities. According to NDMJ-SASY’s report, “this pandemic has also exposed the broken system of untouchability and casteist attitude at work,” other than disclosing health sector failures of the government. The report further revealed that “COVID 19-situation and the consequent lockdown has resulted in many deaths, murders and suicides due to mismanagement.”twocircles
India ended up flattening wrong curve (GDP) because of a 'draconian lockdown': Rajiv Bajaj
The lockdown that India put in place around the last week of March was aimed at flattening the Covid curve. But the move ended up flattening a very different curve —growth (GDP) curve — according to Rajiv Bajaj, Managing Director of Bajaj AutoNSE 1.22 %.Having flattened the wrong curve, the country eventually came to suffer the worst of both worlds, Bajaj said in his conversation with Rahul Gandhi — part of a series where the former Congress president talks to experts on the pandemic's impact on India.India looked up to and tried to emulate Europe and the US rather than Japan and South Korea, which Bajaj said was a wrong benchmark for an Asian country like ours."There were various forms of lockdown that we could have opted for. We chose a hard lockdown that was porous, because of which the virus situation here is still persisting," is how Bajaj summed up the situation.GDP in Q4 hit an 11-year trough after a full locked-down week made matters worse for an already sputtering quarter.The India-wide lockdown was imposed on March 25, but business was already misfiring well before that.He also talked at length about how sentiment has been affected. India has fallen short of disclosing facts and truth; that has hurt the sentiment and people actually think that the contagion is like a cancer, he said.He said he thought it would take a long time to return to normalcy. India cannot save itself out of trouble, it has to sell itself out of trouble, Bajaj observed.The country needs a stimulus to demand, he added.Bajaj also found faults with how the nation was unlocking after the months-long curb. According to him, an aligned approach to unlocking is missing, and the fear that was created at the very outset is to blame for this lack of smooth unlocking.economictimes
Covid lockdown decimated economy, showed us ‘worst of both worlds’: Rajiv Bajaj to Rahul Gandhi
PM Garib Kalyan: Over 144 Million Ration Card Holders Not Provided Grain in May
New Delhi: Around 144.5 million people who are eligible to be provided grain (wheat or rice) under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package (PMGKP) did not get their entitlement for the month of May, data released by the Centre on June 3 show. The figures also show that 64.4 million ration card holders have still not received the grains that they should have in April.Last month, The Wire had reported that 200 million beneficiaries under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) who hold ration cards did not receive the additional 5 kilograms of grain that they were entitled to under the PMGKP in April.When finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced PMGKP on March 26, she said that 800 million beneficiaries (there are 803 million beneficiaries under the NFSA as per the department of food and public distribution) would be provided 5 kg of grain (wheat or rice) in addition to usual allocation of 5 kg per month. This was to be provided free of charge for April, May and June. She had also said that 1 kilogram of pulses per month will be distributed to ration card holding households free of cost for 3 months.
Doctors, nurses have final responsibility to protect themselves from Covid: Govt to SC
The central govt today told the Supreme Court that the healthcare workers had the “final responsibility” to protect themselves from Covid-19. Union health ministry, in an affidavit filed with the SC, said that hospital infection control committees were responsible for implementing Covid-19 prevention and control activities, but ultimately “it is also his/her responsibility to adequately train himself/herself and take all possible measures for preventing infection”.theprint
Centre’s order on wages: SC reserves verdict, says no coercive action against employers
New Delhi :The Supreme Court today reserved its verdict for June 12 on a batch of petitions challenging Centre’s March 29 order asking employers to pay full wages to employees for the period of lockdown. The top court, however, said that no coercive action will be taken against any employer for violating MHA’s order.During the hearing, the court observed that some negotiations have to happen between employers and workers to iron out what has to be done for the salary for 54 days during lockdown.Justifying its direction on wages in the apex court, Centre said that employers claiming incapacity in paying salaries must be directed to furnish their audited balance sheets and accounts in the court.
SC asks Delhi, UP, Haryana to form common travel policy in a week
The Supreme Court has given a week’s time to Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana to decide on a consistent policy for inter-state movement in Delhi and NCR.Delhi sealed its borders for a week on Monday amid a continuous rise in coronavirus cases. Chief Minister Kejriwal’s announcement comes amid indications that beds in Delhi govt-run hospitals will be reserved for the city’s residents only. The borders are open only for those involved in essential services.Kejriwal’s announcement came on the day when Haryana opened Gurgaon-Delhi borders in line with the revised lockdown guidelines issued by Centre. Later Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar said that the borders would be opened after mutual consent of both govts.New Delhi
Display all details of PM CARES Fund on website; Trust subject to RTI Act: Petition in Delhi HC
A PIL has been filed before Delhi High Court seeking a direction to Trustees of the PM CARES Fund to display on its website the details of the money received and the purposes for which such amount has been utilized, reports legal news website LiveLaw.inThe petition has been filed by Dr. SS Hooda through Advocate Aditya Hooda, in the backdrop of a reply given by the PM's Office to an RTI application, stating that PM CARES FUNDS is not a 'public authority' under Section 2(h) of RTI Act. Petitioner has submitted that anybody that is "owned","controlled" or "substantially financed" by the government qualifies a public authority under the RTI Act. In the present case, it is submitted, the PM CARES Fund is both controlled as well as substantially financed by the government. To establish control of the government it is submitted, "Prime Minister is the ex-officio chairman of PM CARES fund while the ministers of Defense, Home Affairs and Finance are its ex-officio trustees. The Chairman and trustees of the fund further have the power to appoint 3 additional trustees. The rules/criterions for spending the funds of the trust shall be formulated by the PM and the three ministers aforementioned."
2 senior IAS officers in PMO appointed to World Bank, World Trade Organisation
Modi govt has appointed 2 members of PMO, senior IAS officers Rajiv Topno and Brajendra Navnit, to World Bank and WTO, respectively. The appointments come at a time when both the organisations are expected to play a key role in helping developing economies recover from the impact of Covid-19 and revive global trade. Topno has been appointed senior advisor to World Bank, and Navnit as Ambassador to Permanent Mission for India (PMI) at WTO in Geneva. Both the posts are considered plum, and hold the rank of joint secretary in the Government of India. Topno,a 1996 Gujarat-cadre IAS officer, is private secretary to PM Narendra Modi, while Navnit, a 1999 Tamil Nadu-cadre officer, serves as joint secretary in PMO. A highly-placed source said the post of the ambassador to PMI has traditionally been held by officers of IFS, saying Navnit’s appointment “in that sense is aberrational” and in the nature of a “reward”. Given global pandemic and the scale of its economic fallout, World Bank and WTO could assume greater significance in the process of economic and trade revival in countries, and the Modi government would, thus, require trusted officers in the institutions. Between April and May, World Bank approved 2 aid tranches of $1 billion to support India’s efforts for providing social assistance to poor and vulnerable households as part of its Covid-19 response. There were other appointments too Thursday. An IRTS officer of 2000 batch, Anwar Hussain Shaik, has been appointed under Navnit as the counsellor in PMI to WTO. theprint
Adani Group Seeks More Time to Take Over 3 Airports, Cites COVID-19 Induced Uncertainty
New Delhi: Adani group has expressed its inability to take over 3 airports it won after aggressive bidding last year, dealing a blow to the government’s privatisation plan.The group has cited uncertainty in the aviation sector due to the coronavirus pandemic for seeking at least 6 months to take over Lucknow, Mangalore and Ahmedabad airports, sources told Business Standard. It has written to the Airport Authority of India (AAI) to invoke the force majeure clause to postpone the takeover and it has appointed consultants to re-evaluate the viability of the business.Business Standard reached out to the Adani group for its comment. We will update this story as and when it responds.
Coronavirus: At least 30 cops dead, over 2,500 infected in Maharashtra so far
Mumbai: At least 30 police personnel, including an officer, have so far died due to COVID-19 in Maharashtra, while over 2,500 have tested positive for the disease, an official said on Thursday.Nearly 18 of total 30 victims were working in the Mumbai Police force and contracted the deadly infection while implementing the lockdown orders, he said."Till now, over 2,500 state police personnel have tested positive for the coronavirus and 30 of them, including an officer, have died," the official said.As of now, the number of active cases in the police force stands at 1,510, including 191 officers, he said. With 9,304 cases and 260 deaths in the last 24 hours, the total number of COVID-19 infections in India reached 2,16,919 and the numbers of casualties soared to 6,075 on Thursday. Of total, 1,04,106 people have been cured and discharged. Meanwhile, Defence Secretary Ajay Kumar has tested positive for COVID-19 and has been put under home quarantine. Kumar, who was tested after developing a mild fever, is the first top government official to test positive for the disease. PTI/ indian express
In UP, just 3% of returning migrants tested are positive
New Delhi :Almost two months since migrants started returning to their homes, data from Uttar Pradesh, their top destination state, has seen only 3 per cent of the tested samples of migrants testing Covid positive.This trend has largely remained the same for the last 10 days. According to the Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme data, currently, as many 11.68 lakh migrants who have returned to the state are under surveillance. Of them, 74,237 migrants have been tested for the infection and 2,404 have turned positive — a positivity rate of 3.2 per cent. Over the last 10 days, the average is 3 per cent of the total migrant samples tested.This suggests that a heavy influx of migration isn’t setting off an exponential growth in cases in Uttar Pradesh and the positivity rate in migrant samples remains close to the state’s overall figure, 2.85 per cent.
PM’s call to light candles for 9 minutes at 9 PM: PMO rejects RTI application seeking details of speech
PMO has declined to entertain an RTI application seeking details of PM Narendra Modi’s speech made on April 3 during he gave a call to countrymen to light candles and lamps for 9 minutes at 9 pm on April 5, after sitting on the application for nearly 2 months.In his 11-minute message to people,PM had termed it as an attempt to show Coronavirus, strength of Indian unity and ‘light’. “We must all go through this darkness together. Those who are most affected by this are the poor and marginalised. To overcome this darkness, we must all unite to spread the light. Make this darkness of Coronavirus meet the light we all spread,” PM had said as India completed the first ten days of 21-day lockdown.
Race for Corona vaccine intensifies: Brazil approves Oxford vaccine trials; Moderna to start final phase in July
The rising number of Covid-19 cases across the world, which has surpassed the 6.29 million mark, has paved the way for fast-tracking of clinical trials of vaccines, which are being seen as the only ray of hope in the battle against SARS-CoV-2 in the long run.In latest developments, the Donald Trump administration has selected five companies as the most likely candidates to produce a vaccine for the coronavirus while Brazil has approved human clinical trials for candidate being jointly developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca Plc.Around 120 vaccines are in the works across the world, of which at least 10 are undergoing human trials. Coming to India, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan has said four out of the 14 Covid-19 vaccine candidates might enter the clinical trial stage in the next three-five months.As part of Operation Warp Speed, which aims to deliver effective Covid-19 vaccines for the US by the end of the year, Donald Trump administration has selected five companies, including Moderna Inc, AstraZeneca Plc and Pfizer Inc, as the most likely candidates to produce a jab, the New York Times reported. The other companies are Johnson & Johnson and Merck & Co Inc.The US is planning massive clinical trials involving 100,000 to 150,000 volunteers. The government aims to start mid-stage testing in July.The first two vaccines to start mid-stage trials would likely be from Moderna and AstraZeneca/Oxford University combination, Reuters reported.indianexpress
UN, Red Cross ask govts to unite in developing vaccine
UN and International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement are urging that governments and others unite in developing a “people’s vaccine” to protect everyone against the coronavirus.Their appeal came ahead of a vaccine summit in London organized by the Global Vaccine Alliance that is seeking to mobilize billions of dollars of funding for a COVID-19 vaccine.AP
Black, Asian, minority ethnic people more likely to be fined under corona laws than whites in London: figures show
People from black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds are more likely to be fined under coronavirus regulations than white people in London, new data shows. Figures from the Metropolitan Police show white people in London were given 45.6% of fines, while 26% were given to black people, 22.6% to Asian people and 5.8% to an ethnicity characterised as “other” or not recorded.The data comes as concerns grow about the impact of coronavirus on BAME people, who are more likely to die from COVID-19, a review has found. Met said that “when compared with the composition of the resident population, higher proportions of those in black and minority ethnic groups were issued with FPNs (fines) or arrested across London as a whole”. Yahoo News
Israel suspends parliament sessions after Arab MP gets virus
Israel suspended parliament sessions after a legislator tested positive for coronavirus amid concerns about new outbreaks in the country.All non-essential Knesset staff were instructed to stay home, and all of Thursday's committee meetings were postponed "pending an investigation of ramifications" of MP Sami Abu Shehadeh having contracted COVID-19."I appeal to all of those who have been in my immediate vicinity to self-isolate and get tested," Abu Shehadeh, a member of the Arab Joint List party, said in a Twitter post.Israel reacted quickly to coronavirus crisis with stringent measures and, so far, the pandemic has been relatively mild in the country compared with others around the world.Israeli schools reopened last month, but worries have grown some children are infecting others despite a slew of precautionary measures. Israeli media reported on Thursday as many as 42 schools closed over new outbreaks.The education ministry did not immediately confirm that figure.aljazeera
People's joy at reopened mosques in Gaza "a blessing" says imam
Gaza:Mosques reopened for daily prayers and children returned to nursery schools on Wednesday in an easing of coronavirus restrictions in the Gaza Strip. The Hamas Islamist-run enclave, whose borders are tightly controlled by Israel and Egypt, has recorded 61 confirmed infection cases, all in quarantine facilities, and one death during the health crisis. 2 million Palestinians live in Gaza.In the past week, Muslim religious authorities in the territory have allowed Friday prayers in mosques, after a two-month closure. Ahmed Al-Safadi, a Gaza City imam, said dozens of people attended dawn prayers at his mosque.“People’s pleasure at returning to God’s house is a great blessing,” he said.Reuters
US: Over 10,000 arrested, protests against Floyd killing continue
AP figures put the number of arrests to be over 10,000 nationwide in protests decrying racism and police brutality in the wake of George Floyd's death.All four Minneapolis police officers involved in Floyd's death have been charged. Derek Chauvin, who knelt on Floyd's neck, has been charged with second-degree murder, up from third-degree murder. He also faces a second-degree manslaughter charge. The other 3 are charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and manslaughter.Several major cities scaled back or lifted curfews imposed for the past few days. As protests continue, police in riot gear charged into a crowd of about 1,000 protesters defying a local curfew in New York City's Brooklyn borough, albeit peacefully, near an outdoor plaza, and clubbed demonstrators and journalists as they scurried for cover in heavy rain.aljazeera
Knife attack in China primary school wounds at least 39
A knife-wielding attacker wounded at least 37 students and two adults at a primary school in southern China as local media identified a security guard as the perpetrator.All victims, including teaching staff, were sent to hospitals but were not in a life-threatening condition, said authorities in Cangwu County in Guangxi region.The incident at the Wangfu Central Primary School happened at 8:30am when children would normally arrive for class. The attacker, reportedly aged 50, was "under control", Cangwu govt said. "37 students suffered mild injuries and two adults suffered more severe injuries. All of them were sent to a hospital for treatment, and none of their lives are in danger," it said.aljazeera
Libya's GNA says it regained full control of capital, Tripoli
Forces fighting for Libya's internationally recognised government said they regained full control over Tripoli after being besieged for more than a year by militias loyal to an eastern-based renegade commander.Government of National Accord (GNA) military operations room said in a statement on Thursday its forces captured all areas surrounding the Tripoli city administrative area.
Libya: Haftar visits Egypt hours before rival govt recaptures Tripoli airport
Libya’s eastern-based military leader Brigadier General Khalifa Haftar visited Cairo yesterday and met with Egypt’s deputy defence minister hours before the internationally-recognised GNA announced that it had taken over Tripoli International Airport from his forces.Since 2014 Libya’s leadership has been divided between the two rival factions led by Haftar in the east and GNA in Tripoli.Haftar, a self-styled military general, is backed by Egypt, Russia, and the United Arab Emirates, while the internationally-recognised GNA is backed by Qatar and Turkey. The latter passed a law in January to deploy troops to support the GNA.
US pressing Saudi, UAE to end airspace ban against Qatar: Report
US has been pushing to resolve a nearly three-year diplomatic dispute between Qatar and its neighbours by pressing Saudi Arabia and UAE to stop their ban on Qatari airlines using their airspace, according to a report. President Donald Trump has personally pressured the Saudi leadership to end the restrictions, which often force Qatari aircraft to use Iranian airspace as their only corridor out of the region, US and Gulf officials told Wall Street Journal.The efforts included calls earlier this spring with Saudi King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the officials were quoted as saying on Wednesday.
Hamas: Israel’s annexation plans threaten Palestinian national project
Head of Hamas’ Office in Diaspora, Maher Salah, warned that Israel’s plans to annex over 30% of occupied WestBank constitute a real “threat” to Palestinian national project.In a televised speech, Salah said Israeli annexation plan would open “new doors of conflict, increase friction and destroy all projects to settle the conflict and peaceful solutions that the world has invested in for decades.”“We as Palestinians, inside and outside Palestine, will not allow this occupation to turn West Bank into scattered cantons. West Bank is ours, we are its people and protectors,and Jerusalem is our eternal capital and we will protect it with our blood,”he added.
Protesters raid office, ‘force’ Iraq health director to resign
Protestors in Iraq’s Dhi Qar province yesterday stormed the office of the head of the local Health Ministry forcing him to resign over his handling of the coronavirus outbreak amid the biggest rise in the number of cases over a 24-hour period. Video footage emerged on social media showing Abdul Hussain Al-Jabri signing his resignation letter after protestors barged into his office. Protests have been taking place in the province since Tuesday with several demonstrators injured and arrested, according to Al-Hurra.
Rights group: Syria regime, Russia launch new attack on Idlib despite ceasefire
Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said that Syrian regime and Russian warplanes have launched a new offensive in northwestern Syria for the first time since a ceasefire brokered between Russia and Turkey came into effect about three months ago.SOHR Director Rami Abdel Rahman said Russian jets targeted the Hama-Idlib-Latakia triangle; an area located on the administrative borders between the three governorates. The strikes came late on Tuesday night and early yesterday.According to Abdel Rahman, the Russian raids came to keep opposition fighters away from the road as well as from villages in Sahl Al-Ghab area, where the Syrian and Russian forces are deployed.SOHR said the new attacks coincided with the new displacement of civilians from areas in Jabal Al-Zawiyah in Idlib’s southern countryside.
Turkey informs Idlib opposition of incoming operation by Assad, Iran, Russia
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