*INDIA- CORONAVIRUS- LOCKDOWN*
Home Ministry Includes 'Tablighi Work' as an Indian Visa Violation
New Delhi: In a clear attempt to create hurdles for any foreign member of Tablighi Jamaat (TJ) wanting to enter India from now on, even on a tourist visa, Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has specifically inserted “engaging in Tablighi work” as one of the norms for visa violation in India’s general visa policy guidelines. As per a news report in The Hindu, the MHA has also included a fine of $500 for violating the new rule, besides putting a ban of ten years on a person’s entry for any such violations.According to the newly inserted point 15 of the amended guidelines, under “Restriction in Engaging in Tabligi Activities”, it says:“Foreign nationals granted any type of visa and OCI cardholders shall not be permitted to engage themselves in tabligh work. There will be no restriction in visiting religious places and attending normal religious activities like attending religious discourses. However, preaching religious ideologies, making speeches in religious places, distribution of audio or visual display/ pamphlets pertaining to religious ideologies, spreading conversion etc. will not be allowed.”A foreign resident entering India on a tourist visa doesn’t per se have restrictions on attending any religious functions or discourses, but is barred from preaching any ideology or delivering a speech at a religious place. The MHA, with the new explicit categorisation in the policy guidelines for visas, has thereby expounded on what would mean to do “tabligh work”. It has also clearly stated that someone entering the country with a tourist visa can only have the purpose of recreation, sightseeing and visiting friends and relatives. They can also attend short-term yoga classes.TJ sources, however, categorically denied that foreign members were indulging in “preaching” during their stay in India. “They were not violating the tourist visa norms. There is no restriction on attending religious discourses and staying at a mosque. If they would have been preaching or indulging in religious conversion, they would have been found elsewhere, not among Muslims.”“The missionary visa is specifically for Christian missionaries who are directly under Pope. How can we apply under that visa,” claimed the sources.Aside from putting restrictions on TJ activities, there have also been reports of the Narendra Modi government restricting entry of Christian missionaries into the country or not extending their long-term visas.thewire
Tablighi activity a specific visa violation, says Ministry of Home Affairs
No need for CBI probe in Nizamuddin Markaz case, Centre tells Supreme Court, rejects claim of Delhi Police failure
Ministry of Home Affairs has said in its affidavit before the Supreme Court that there is no need for a CBI probe into Nizamuddin Markaz case where Tablighi Jamaat gathered in March. Centre said that there is no need for a CBI investigation in the Nizamuddin Markaz meet case and also rejected claims that Delhi Police failed to stop the gathering from happening.The affidavit filed by Centre before the Supreme Court has said that the investigation into the Nizamuddin matter is being conducted on a day-to-day basis in accordance with the law and all efforts are being made to submit a report in a time-bound manner. The PIL on Nizamuddin Markaz and Anand Vihar fiasco has been adjourned for hearing after two weeks as the petitioner sought time to file a rejoinder. The petitioner had sought inquiry into the "lapses" by Delhi government and Delhi Police for allowing such a large congregation to happen in March when coronavirus cases in India were rising.MHA has refuted allegations that Delhi Police was negligent in Nizamuddin Markaz fiasco and has proposed to file a comprehensive report. In its affidavit before the Supreme Court, MHA has blames Nizamuddin chief Maulana Saad and other Markaz leaders for flouting social distancing norms in the middle of the coronavirus crisis. MHA has said there is no need of other independent probe in the case.MHA has said Tablighi Jamaat was informed on March 21 to send all its people, including foreigners, back to their homes. "These lawful directions of the police were ignored by the Jamaat organisers," MHA has said.arkaz organisers, including Maulana Saad, deliberately and wilfully ignored directions to remove crowds. An FIR has been registered," MHA has said.indiatoday
Tablighi Jamat event: Investigation on in gathering of people, no need for CBI probe: Centre to SC
Maulana Saad didn’t inform govt about Tablighi Jamaat congregation: Centre to Supreme Court
Kanpur medical college principal Arati Lalchandani removed after Tablighi diatribe video
Uttar Pradesh govnt has removed Kanpur’s GSVM Medical College principal Arati Dave Lalchandani from her post in the wake of a controversial video that went viral last week. In the video, she had purportedly launched a diatribe against Tablighi Jamaat members and had accused BJP government in the state of “appeasement” and wasting resources on them. According to sources, the action was taken after Kanpur District Magistrate Brahm Dev Tiwari submitted his report on the controversy to Principal Secretary (Medical Education) Rajneesh Dube. “Lalchandani has been transferred to Jhansi where she will serve as principal of Maharani Laxmi Bai Medical College Medical College,” a source said.In the almost five-minute video, which is likely to be 2 months old, Lalchandani was heard saying “these people are terrorists, but instead are provided VIP treatment”, referring to Tablighi Jamaat members. She went on to add that her hospital had to exhaust its resources for patients linked to the cluster, putting doctors at risk, while the patients’ hotel bills were paid. Labelling the admission of “these people” to hospitals as appeasement by the UP government, she said the government should instead handle them more strictly.However, no FIR has been registered till date.
Staggering of visitors, disposable menus: Guidelines for hotels, malls, religious places ahead of reopening
Centre has released a set of guidelines for the religious and commercial establishments set to reopen on Monday after a gap of over 2 months.The first phase of the government's plan to unlock India will come into effect from June 8 when religious places, hotels, restaurants and shopping malls will be allowed to reopen. Even as several commercial activities were allowed by the government during the latest phases of the nationwide lockdown, religious places, shopping malls, hotels and restaurants have been closed for any visitors since March 25.As phase-1 of Unlock India comes into effect on Monday, Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has issued the standard operating procedure (SOP) to contain the spread of Covid-19 at the places being reopened.
SOP for religious places
Entrance to have mandatory hand hygiene (sanitizer dispenser) and thermal screening provisions. Only asymptomatic persons shall be allowed on the premises. All persons to be allowed entry only if using face cover/masks. Posters/standees on preventive measures about Covid-19 to be displayed prominently. Audio and video clips to spread awareness on preventive measures for Covid-19 should be regularly played. Staggering of visitors to be done, if possible. Shoes/footwear to be preferably taken off inside their own vehicle. If needed, they should be kept in separate slots for each individual/family by the persons themselves. Proper crowd management in the parking lots and outside the premises duly following social distancing norms - shall be organised. Any shops, stalls, cafeteria etc, outside and within the premises shall follow social distancing norms at all times. Specific markings may be made with sufficient distance to manage the queue and ensure social distancing in the premises. Preferably separate entry and exits for visitors shall be organised. Maintain physical distancing of a minimum of 6 feet at all times when queuing up for entry. People should wash their hand and feet with soap and water before entering the premises. Seating arrangements to be made in such a way that adequate social distancing is maintained. For air-conditioning/ventilation, guidelines of CPWD shall be followed which say that the temperature setting of all air conditioning devices should be in the range of 24-30 degree Celsius; relative humidity should be in the range of 40-70 per cent; intake of fresh air should be as much as possible; and cross ventilation should be adequate. Touching of statues/idols/holy books etc not to be allowed. In view of the potential threat of the spread of infection, as far as feasible, recorded devotional music/songs may be played and choir or singing groups should not be allowed. Common prayer mats should be avoided and devotees should bring their own prayer mat or piece of cloth which they may take back with them. No physical offerings like prasad/distribution or a sprinkling of holy water, etc to be allowed inside the religious place. Community kitchens/langars/ann-daan etc at religious places should follow physical distancing norms while preparing and distributing food. Effective sanitation within the premises shall be maintained with particular focus on lavatories, hand and foot-washing stations/areas. The floors should particularly be cleaned multiple times on the premises. In case of a suspect or confirmed case in the premises, authorities at the religious place must:a. Place the ill person in a room or area where they are isolated from others. b. Provide a mask/face cover till such time he/she is examined by a doctor. c. Immediately inform the nearest medical facility (hospital/clinic) or call the state or district helpline. d. A risk assessment will be undertaken by the designated public health authority (district RRT/treating physician) and accordingly further action be initiated regarding the management of the case, his/her contacts and need for disinfection.e. Disinfection of the premises to be taken up if the person is found positive.
SOP for hotels
Entrance to have mandatory hand hygiene (sanitizer dispenser) and thermal screening provisions. Only asymptomatic staff and guests shall be allowed. All staff and guests to be allowed entry only if using face cover/masks. The face cover/masks have to be worn at all times inside the hotel. Adequate manpower shall be deployed by hotel management for ensuring social distancing norms. Staff should additionally wear gloves and take other required precautionary measures. All employees who are at higher risk i.e. older employees, pregnant employees and employees who have underlying medical conditions, to take extra precautions. They should preferably not be exposed to any front-line work requiring direct contact with the public. Hotel management to facilitate work from home wherever feasible. Proper crowd management in the hotel as well as in outside premises like parking lotsduly following social distancing norms shall be ensured. Large gatherings/congregations continue to remain prohibited. viii. Valet parking, if available, shall be operational with operating staff wearing face covers/ masks and gloves as appropriate. A proper disinfection of steering, door handles, keys, etc. of the vehicles should be taken up. Preferably separate entry and exits for guests, staff and goods/supplies shall be organized. Maintaining physical distancing of a minimum of 6 feet, when queuing up for entry and inside the hotel as far as feasible. Specific markings may be made with sufficient distance to manage the queue and ensure social distancing in the premises.Number of people in the elevators shall be restricted, duly maintaining social distancing norms.Use of escalators with one person on alternate steps may be encouraged.Details of the guest (travel history, medical condition etc) along with ID and self declaration form must be provided by the guest at reception.Posters/standees/AV media on preventive measures about Covid-19 to be displayed prominently.Hand sanitizers must be kept at the reception for guests to use.Guests to sanitize hands before and after filling relevant forms including A&D register.Hotels must adopt contactless processes like QR code, online forms, digital payments like e-wallet etc. for both check-in and check-out.Luggage should be disinfected before sending the luggage to the rooms.Guests who are at higher risk ie those who are older, pregnant or those who have underlying medical conditions are advised to take extra precautions. Guests should be advised not to visit areas falling within the containment zoneRequired precautions while handling supplies, inventories and goods in the hotel shall be ensured. Proper queue management and disinfection shall be organised.
SOP for restaurants
Seating arrangement in the restaurant also to be made in such a way that adequate social distancing is maintained.Disposable menus are advised to be used.
Instead of cloth napkins, use of good quality disposable paper napkins to be encouraged.Contactless mode of ordering and digital mode of payment (using e-wallets) to be encouraged.Buffet service should also follow social distancing norms among guests.Room service or takeaways to be encouraged, instead of dine-in. Food delivery personnel should leave the packet at guest or customer’s door and not handed directly to the receiver.The staff for home deliveries shall be screened thermally by the hotel authorities prior to allowing home deliveries.For room service, communication between guests and in-house staff should be through intercom/ mobile phone and room service (if any) should be provided while maintaining adequate social distance. Gaming arcades/children play areas (wherever applicable) shall remain closed.For air-conditioning/ventilation, the guidelines of CPWD shall be followed, etc.
All shopping malls shall ensure the following arrangements
Entrance to have mandatory hand hygiene (sanitizer dispenser) and thermal screening provisions. Only asymptomatic customers/visitors shall be allowed. All workers/customers/visitors to be allowed entry only if using face cover/masks. The face cover/masks have to be worn at all times inside the shopping mall. Posters/standees/AV media on preventive measures about COVID-19 to be displayed prominently.Staggering of visitors to be done, if possible.Adequate manpower shall be deployed by Mall Management for ensuring social distancing norms.All employees who are at higher risk i.e. older employees, pregnant employees and employees who have underlying medical conditions, to take extra precautions. They should preferably not be exposed to any front-line work requiring direct contact with the public. Shopping Mall management to facilitate work from home wherever feasible.Proper crowd management in the parking lots and outside the premises duly following social distancing norms shall be ensured. Valet parking, if available, shall be operational with operating staff wearing face covers/ masks and gloves as appropriate. Proper disinfection of steering, door handles, keys, etc. of the vehicles should be taken up.Any shops, stalls, cafeteria etc., outside and within the premises shall follow social distancing norms at all times.Specific markings may be made with sufficient distance to manage the queue and ensure social distancing in the premises.Preferably separate entry and exits for visitors, workers and goods/supplies shall be organized.The staff for home deliveries shall be screened thermally by shopping mall authorities prior to allowing home deliveries.Maintaining physical distancing of a minimum of 6 feet, when queuing up for entry and inside the shopping mall as far as feasible, etc.
SOP for offices:
Entrance to have mandatory hand hygiene and thermal screening provisions. Only asymptomatic staff/visitors shall be allowed.Any officer and staff residing in the containment zone should inform the same to the supervisory officer and not attend the office till the containment zone is denotified. Such staff should be permitted to work from home and it will not be counted as leave period.Drivers shall maintain social distancing and shall follow the required dos and don’ts related to COVID-19. It shall be ensured by the service providers/ officers/ staff that drivers residing in containment zones shall not be allowed to drive vehicles.There shall be provision for disinfection of the interior of the vehicle using 1% sodium hypochlorite solution/ spray. Proper disinfection of steering, door handles, keys, etc. should be taken up. Advise all employees who are at higher risk i.e. older employees, pregnant employees and employees who have underlying medical conditions, to take extra precautions. They should preferably not be exposed to any front-line work requiring direct contact with the public. Office management to facilitate work from home wherever feasible.All officers and staff/visitors to be allowed entry only if using face cover/masks. The face cover/mask has to be worn at all times inside the office premises.Routine issues of visitors/temporary passes should be suspended and visitors with a proper permission of the officer who they want to meet, should be allowed after being properly screened.Meetings, as far as feasible, should be done through video conferencing.Posters/standees/AV media on preventive measures about COVID-19 to be displayed prominently.Staggering of office hours, lunch hours/coffee breaks to be done, as far as feasible.Proper crowd management in the parking lots and outside the premises duly following social distancing norms be ensured.Valet parking, if available, shall be operational with operating staff wearing face covers/ masks and gloves as appropriate. A proper disinfection of steering, door handles, keys, etc. of vehicles should be taken up.Any shops, stalls, cafeteria etc., outside and within the office premises shall follow social distancing norms at all times.Specific markings may be made with sufficient distance to manage the queue and ensure social distancing in the premises.Preferably separate entry and exit for officers, staff and visitors shall be organised.Proper cleaning and frequent sanitization of the workplace, particularly of the frequently touched surfaces must be ensured.Ensure regular supply of hand sanitisers, soap and running water in the washrooms.Large gatherings continue to remain prohibited. Effective and frequent sanitation within the premises shall be maintained with particular focus on lavatories, drinking and handwashing stations/areas.Cleaning and regular disinfection (using 1% sodium hypochlorite) of frequently touched surfaces (doorknobs, elevator buttons, handrails, benches, washroom fixtures, etc) shall be done in-office premises and in common areas.Proper disposal of face covers/masks/gloves leftover by visitors and/or employees shall be ensured.
Guidelines issued for reopening religious places, malls; dine ins to have only 50 per cent customers
No prasad or touching idols in temples, disposable menus in restaurants, AC temp at 24 degrees: Centre issues guidelines for Unlock 1.0
Supreme Court says 15 days enough for states to transport migrant labourers back home
The Supreme Court on Friday suggested that Centre and state governments transport all stranded migrant labourers to their respective native states in 15 days. The court indicated that that was enough time to transport the stranded labourers. The Supreme Court will pronounce its full order on the matter on Tuesday.A bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan, SK Kaul and MR Shah was hearing in suo motu a PIL over the plight of migrant workers.The court said, “What we intend to do is we will give you and the states 15 days’ time to transport all migrants. All states will bring on record how they will provide employment and other kind of relief. There should be registration of the migrants.”Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the court that the government has transported an approximate of 1 crore migrant labourers so far. “By road 41 lakh migrant labourers have been transported and 57 lakh by train,” he said.
Modi Govt Quietly Releases 'Incomplete' Migrant Worker Data Following CIC Rap
New Delhi:Data disclosed by office of Chief Labour Commissioner (CLC) states that a little more than 26 lakh migrant workers remain stranded across India and most of them are either in relief camps or at their workplaces.It is unclear for what time period this data captures the numbers of stranded migrant workers. What’s clear, though, is that it was uploaded on June 2. But the data was uploaded without informing the right to information applicant who requested it or issuing a public statement, making it impossible to say anything more about other related details.A closer look at the data suggests that this number is an understatement, incomplete and not provided in the appropriate format thereby concealing details, said activist Venkatesh Nayak whose RTI application resulted in this disclosure. Since the data has not been disclosed fully, activist is planning to file another complaint against Chief Labour Commissioner’s office so that full data is disclosed in public domain. huffingtonpost
Scam in Covid Care? Allegations of Funds Swindling in Purchases of Equipment Surface in Karnataka
Even as it prides itself on having kept the spread of COVID-19 under control, a major misappropriation of funds may have happened in Karnataka’s expenditure on virus-related purchases made over the last two months.The Legislature's Public Accounts Committee (PAC), led by Congress' HK Patil, is keen to initiate an investigation into the matter by conducting spot inspections of hospitals and verifying quality of equipment, including testing kits and ventilators.However, Patil said it has not been able to go ahead with the probe due to certain 'hurdles' and he plans to speak to Assembly Speaker Vishweshwar Hegde Kageri over the matter. The committee was tipped off by an anonymous whistle-blower about certain purchases made at an inflated cost by the Drug Logistics and Warehousing Society that is in-charge of procuring equipment.While the Health department has bought N95 masks for Rs 147 each, the Medical Education Department is said to have bought the same for Rs 295. Similarly, multi-parameter monitors that were bought at Rs 1.67 lakh for one department, came at Rs 5.37 lakh for another.
Sena offers to conduct final rites of Covid-19 deceased minority community members
Pune: With the burial of Covid-19 deceased members of a minority community now fast becoming a political issue, the Shiv Sena has offered its services to conduct the last rites of the same in Pune.With Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) having stopped an organisation from perfroming the final rites of deceased Covid-19 Muslims, the Shiv Sena, on Thursday, gave a letter to municipal commissioner Shekhar Gaikwad asking to allow them “to carry out this work”.The Popular Front of India and the Muslim Mulnivasi Manch are two organisation currently ensuring a proper burial for Covid-19 deceased whose relatives have not been willing to do the same.Shiv Sena’s city unit president Sanjay More, Sena leader in the PMC Prithviraj Sutar, along with Shyam Deshpande, Prashant Badhe and Sena’s president in the Pune Cantonment, Javed Khan, presented the letter to the commissioner.hindustantimes
Muslim lawyer in UP vows to fight cases of detained foreign Tablighi Jammat members for free
A 56-year-old Muslim lawyer from Saharanpur Uttar Pradesh has vowed to fight for the release of 57 foreign nationals, belonging to Tabligli Jammat, from various jails in UP. Advocate Janisar Ahmad said that the worst thing to happen in the media trial of the Nizamuddin controversy was the selective conspiracy against foreign members of Tablighi Jamaat and sending them to jail.Recently, the governments of these detained Tablighi Jamaat members from Kyrgyzstan, Sudan, Thailand and Indonesia authorized them to present themselves in courts.
Covid-19 lockdown has created psychological problems and violence within family, says SC judge
A Supreme Court judge has said coronavirus-induced nationwide lockdown has created psychological problems and violence within family, reported PTI. Justice NV Ramana added that the “reverse migration” during the lockdown will lead to an increase in poverty and discrimination.“This pandemic has presented before us multiple emerging issues,” Justice Ramana said at a webinar organised by the National Legal Services Authority. “The most predominant one is that of reverse migration. Massive reverse migration will invariably lead to increase in poverty, inequity and discrimination.”Justice Ramana said the situation was still not under control even after 3 months. “Pursuant to lockdown, thousands of people have lost their lives and livelihood, large scale migration has taken place,” he added.
Coronavirus | Rising infections among pregnant women spark worry in J&K
Jammu and Kashmir has recorded a spark spike in pregnant women testing positive for COVID-19, with 70 such cases in just the first four days of June. The total number of pregnant women infected as on Friday is 181. Experts suggest that the growing numbers are a stark indicator of the community spread of the disease in pockets of Kashmir, just days ahead of the scheduled re-opening of many sectors.Indicating a rising trend, June 1 saw 10 pregnant women testing positive, June 2 recorded 14, June 3 at least 26 and June 4 saw another 20 cases, according to official figures.J&K administration has made it mandatory to test pregnant women ahead of delivery to ensure segregation.
Story of Razia Who is Struggling to Become ‘Atmanirbhar’ by Stitching Masks, But May Not Succeed
Patna: Sitting in a room with thatched roof, she is stitching masks at a very meagre rate to burn her kitchen as her husband has not been able to ply his e-rickshaw since the sudden nationwide lockdown was imposed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the last week of March.The story of Razia Khatoon is typical of thousands of poor men and women across the country who have found it hard to keep their body and soul together in the last two and half months as markets, shops, businesses were halted to contain the spread of Coronavirus.Resident of Muzaffarpur town, around 80 km from the state capital Patna, Razia, in early twenties and mother of one-year-old baby girl, has been stitching masks for one month. Clothes and other raw materials are provided to her by a local contractor. She stitches masks and gives back to the contractor who sells them in markets. She gets only Rs one for stitching one mask. She is able to stitch around 100 masks in a day.Clarion India
Hyderabad: Conduct only final year exams, SIO to State varsities
Hyderabad: Student’s Islamic Organization (SIO) suggested that all universities across the State conduct examination only for final years students pursuing different courses and postpone the exams for the remaining students. It demanded the universities should not collect examination fee now in view of Covid-19 crisis. “Degree if just handed over without evaluating the student’s understanding of the subject will also have a long lasting negative impact on the society. It will set a bad precedent for education system,”said Qayumuddin, State secretary, SIO.telanganatoday
Muslim outfit asks community members to go local, buy from non-Muslim grocers
Mumbai: A Muslim outfit has asked community members to buy from non-Muslims in the neighbourhood rather than go looking for Muslim grocers and traders elsewhere. This call, akin to PM Narendra Modi’s “vocal for local” slogan comes days after videos of some Hindus calling for boycott of Muslim vegetable vendors and businesses surfaced. Bangalore-headquartered All India Muslim Development Council (AIMDC) has issued an appeal on June 2 in which it has asked Muslims not to retaliate “call for boycott of Muslim businesses’’ negatively and increase their dealings with non-Muslim traders.“”Islam teaches us to reply hatred with love and compassion. Our religion attaches huge importance to the rights of neighbours and people living around us. Based on this principle, the shopkeepers living in our neighbourhood should be preferred in our dealings,” said AIMDC’s general secretary Mohammed Imthiyaz. Masjid One Movement through which mosques are being transformed as community development centres. Besides offering namaz, mosques will be used to collect data on social, economic, educational status of the community members living in the mosques’ vicinity. The data will be used to implement several welfare schemes and scholarships among the poor and needy community members. AIMDC and Masjid One Movement were launched nine months ago.
*SOUTH ASIA- INDO-PAK, J&K*
Ahead of talks with China over Ladakh standoff, India signals a realistic approach:HT
Indian military officials will walk into a meeting on Saturday with their Chinese counterparts to attempt to resolve the month-long row over the Line of Actual Control with the knowledge that it may not be possible to achieve an immediate breakthrough to Ladakh standoff, people familiar with the development told HT.Saturday’s meeting is the first high-level meeting between Lt General Harinder Singh, the general officer commanding of Leh-based 14 Corps, and his Chinese counterpart who heads the People’s Liberation Army’s Group Army since the May 5 scuffle between soldiers near Pangong lake and subsequent stand-off at Galwan riverulet.The last round of talks between delegations led by two major general-rank officers of the two armies on June 2 had been inconclusive. Officials, however, underline that it was a positive sign that both sides were talking to each other through established military and diplomatic channels. But the dialogue does not mean an immediate resolution. “This is the eventuality that we are prepared for,” one of them said.
On table for June 6 talks: status quo ante, armour pullback
As Delhi and Beijing move to de-escalate the situation along Line of Actual Control in Ladakh by scaling up military talks to level of Lt Generals, Indian Express has learnt that an Indian proposal for restoration of status quo ante in the contested areas and simultaneous de-induction of artillery and tanks from the rear areas by both armies is likely to be on the table at the June 6 meeting.XIV Corps Commander Lt Gen Harinder Singh will lead the Indian delegation. The meeting will be held at the Chinese Border Personnel Meeting hut in Chushul-Moldo. Lt Gen Singh will make the opening statement.A meeting at the level of Lt Generals to resolve a border dispute on the LAC is rare — all such earlier meetings have taken place at the level of Major Generals and Brigadiers.Sources said that based on deliberations during the preparatory meeting Tuesday between Major General-level officers of the two sides, military commanders drafted a proposal which was sent to Army HQ for vetting. It is unlikely, sources said, that any major change will be made to the proposal which is meant to reduce tensions on the LAC.
‘If LAC not marked soon, build-up like on LoC likely,’ says ex-Army chief interview
If the Line of Actual Control isn’t delineated soon, it will remain vulnerable to face-offs and India and China may end up deploying more troops there, just like it is on LoC with Pakistan, said Gen (retd) V P Malik who was Chief of Army staff when the Kargil intrusion took place in 1999. Gen Malik, who led the Army in the successful eviction of Pak troops, said, in an interview to Indian Express, that an aggressive China, besides nibbling at Ladakh, could also attempt to take control of Karakoram Pass and the area between it and Shaksgam Valley ceded to it by Pakistan. He said, "Three decades of talks, including 22 sessions at the level of Special Representatives, have not succeeded in making China agree to the delineation of LAC on maps pending final boundary solution.There is not even an agreed perception of “disputed areas.” Until the LAC and disputed areas are delineated, we shall continue to see accidental or deliberate face-offs…Since 1993, India and China have signed five agreements and protocols on military-level confidence-building measures along the LAC. But the alarming number of recent incidents indicates that the mechanisms are no longer effective. If the LAC and “disputed areas” are not delineated soon, India and China may end up deploying much larger forces along the LAC — like what we have on the LoC with Pakistan."indianexpress
Video: CRPF Personnel In Kashmir Take Pledge To Boycott Chinese Products
A CRPF unit based in Jammu and Kashmir has pledged to boycott all Chinese products in response to the current stand-off between India and China at the Line of Actual Control in Ladakh region.The “emotional response”, as a CRPF spokesperson puts it, comes days after noted innovator and Ramon Magsaysay and Rolex Awards winner Sonam Wangchuk appealed people to boycott everything “made in China” saying that it will have resonance around the world in the present situation due to Covid-19 pandemic.In a video that has been widely shared on Internet, CRPF personnel of the 177 battalion in north Kashmir’s Sopore could be heard taking a pledge to boycott ''Made in China'' products like eatables, electronic gadgets, communication equipment etc. Outlook could not verify the authenticity of the video.
China appoints new PLA Army commander for India border
China has appointed a new Army General to oversee the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Ground Forces on the India border, amid ongoing tensions across LAC.The new appointment was first publicly confirmed in a report on June 1, that identified Lieutenant General Xu Qiling as the new commander of the PLA Western Theater Command Ground Force, or Army.Lt Gen Xu will report to General Zhao Zongqi, who is commander of the Western Theater Command and oversees all forces there, including the Ground Force or Army, Air Force and Rocket Force. The command is responsible for the India border and is the biggest of five theater commands. Theater commands are usually headed by generals.
*INDIA- ISLAMOPHOBIA, HUMAN RIGHTS & OTHERS*
NIA Cites Activist's Use of Lenin's Photo, Words Like 'Lal Salam,' Comrade' to Justify UAPA Charges
New Delhi: NIA has held the use of phrases like ‘lal salam’ and ‘comrade’ are proof that Bittu Sonowal, a close aide of Assam farmers’ leader Akhil Gogoi, is a Maoist. Sonowal was arrested earlier this year and (along with Gogoi and two of this other aides) charged under the draconian UAPA, by NIA. These arrests were made in the wake of the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protests across Assam in December, 2019.The chargesheet filed against them on May 29 states that Sonowal uploaded a photo of Vladimir Lenin on Facebook with the words: “The Capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them”.NIA also said that Sonowal had greeted some of his friends with the ‘lal salam’ chant and referred to them as ‘comrade’. Akhil Gogoi himself was arrested on December 12 last year from Jorhat and charged under Sections 120B, 253A, 153B of IPC and Sections 18 and 39 of UAPA.Though Gogoi was granted bail by a court, the police did not release him. New cases were slapped against him and this was made the grounds for continuing his detention.The peasant’s body, Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS), which with Gogoi was associated as an advisor, has denounced the filing of the 40-page chargesheet by the NIA, saying it provides no concrete evidence to prove the allegations.The Samiti president, Bhasco Saikia, told Outlook that NIA was keen to brand its leaders as Maoists.
Writing 'Lal Salam' And 'Comrade' On Facebook Can Now Land You Behind Bars In Assam
Inside Safoora Zargar’s Failed Bail Hearing, As She Completes 5 Months Of Pregnancy: Huffington post
New Delhi:“Start from scratch,” said masked Additional Sessions Judge Dharmender Rana to a sparsely attended courtroom as the prosecution sought to defend their claim that Safoora Zargar,a 27 year-old sociology student, now 5 months pregnant and incarcerated since 10 April, conspired to instigate the communal riots that shook the national capital in Feb.Delhi Police has been so eager to imprison Zargar that they first arrested her on April 10 amidst a nation-wide lockdown. When Zargar was granted bail 3 days later by Metropolitan Magistrate Deepakshi Rana, police rearrested her the very same day on the basis of a different FIR filed by police’s so-called “special cell.” Zargar has been booked under at least 20 sections of IPC, including for murder and sedition, two sections of Arms Act, and four sections of UAPA, India’s draconian anti-terror law, and was presented before a different bench.On 4 June, in the latest bail hearing, Zargar’s lawyer Trideep Pais said that she was in her 21st week of pregnancy and suffering from health complications that could increase her chances of miscarriage. Incarceration in any of Delhi’s jails where COVID cases have been reported, Pais noted, could endanger Zargar and her baby.“It’s not her life alone that we are concerned with today,” he said.Over 2 and a half hours, Pais sought to demonstrate that the prosecution was “misleading the court.” “They are trying to weave a false narrative and making people like Safoora pawns,” Pais said. Delhi Police, Pais said, was using an open-ended “all encompassing” investigation to target students and political activists for exercising their constitutional right to protest in opposing Modi govt’s new citizenship law, CAA, that critics say discriminates against Muslims.Pais said tracking Zargar’s movements on 23 Feb.through her phone signal and WhatsApp message revealed that she had only passed by Chand Bagh that day and gone to Khureji instead, another hotspot 10 kms away.Pais said that Zargar did give a speech here on 23 February, but it was not the least bit inflammatory. He pointed out that she was not booked under FIR that was registered for the violence in Khureji, 3 days after her speech. The defense lawyer described the government’s “prima facie” as “lopsided.”So even if one is to assume that Zargar did speak in Chand Bagh , there was no violence reported till close to 24 hours after the hypothetical speech. Like in the Khureji case, Pais said that Zargar was also not booked under FIR registered for the violence that erupted here. Yet in his order, which took nearly an hour to dictate, Judge Rana appeared unmoved.
23 lakh MT wheat damaged in MP by rain attributed to Cyclone Nisarga, Congress blames govt for ‘carelessness’
Madhya Pradesh witnessed unusual rain for around 10 hours on Thursday in various districts– attributed to Cyclone Nisarga – which according to experts, damaged an estimated 23 lakh metric tonnes of wheat and other crops in the state. Reports and photos coming in from various Mandis in the state indicate that a huge quantity of wheat had been lying in open in the Mandis owing to the ongoing wheat procurement drive, which got damaged in the incessant rain.“Some of the wet grain which was lying in the open had been sold while some of it was unsold,” said farmer leader Kedar Sirohi. “Now, farmers are left in the lurch because Mandi officials may refuse to purchase the unsold wet grain because of quality issues. Farmers have been waiting in queue for days,” he said."Wheat has been damaged and farmers will suffer because the state government made no arrangements to save the crops despite an alert about rainfall due to Cyclone Nisarga," he added.
Kerala Police Registers FIR Against Maneka Gandhi
NEW DELHI:Malappuram police have registered a criminal case against former union minister and animal rights activist Maneka Gandhi and several other BJP leaders on allegations of “deliberately spreading hate” against Malappuram district and its residents after the death of a pregnant elephant. FIR was lodged on Thursday night on the complaint of an advocate Subhash Chandran hailing from Malappuram itself.While police received six complaints in all against Mrs Gandhi and others, the police filed the FIR on the complaint received from the advocate and attached the rest with Chandran’s complaint as all the complaints were against Mrs Gandhi and other BJP leaders on the same issue.Speaking over phone from Malappuram, the advocate said that it was well-known that the elephant died on May 29 after consuming explosive-laden pineapple in Mannarkkad in Palakkad district.India Tomorrow
Irresponsible media reports spark anger against Muslims and Kerala in elephant death case
The death of a pregnant elephant in Kerala after she was allegedly “fed” a pineapple stuffed with firecrackers sparked massive outrage in the country. The tragic incident started trending on social media after celebrities and politicians condemned the inhuman ordeal. Many demanded that the perpetrators should be given the strictest punishment. Since then, several individuals are mocking the condition of ‘education’ in Kerala, the state with the highest literacy rate in the country. More importantly, as with most other issues in India, the helpless animal’s death has provoked a wave of anti-Muslim sentiment.BJP MP Maneka Gandhi tweeted, “Mallapuram is know for its intense criminal activity specially with regards to animals. No action has ever been taken against a single poacher or wildlife killer so they keep doing it.” She claimed that the incident took place in Malappuram (misspelt as ‘Mallapuram’ in Gandhi’s tweet), a Muslim-dominated district. Gandhi repeated the same in a byte to ANI.In a tweet thread, Pakistani-Canadian author Tarek Fatah shared a report by NDTV and blamed Muslims for the elephant’s death.The report by NDTV shared by Tarek Fatah and several other individuals has now been updated. While it earlier claimed that elephant died in Malappuram, the article’s updated version reads Palakkad.The author of the report Shylaja Verma tweeted a clarification that she got the district’s name wrong.That the incident occurred in Palakkad was also tweeted by Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.Several individuals either shared a link or a screenshot of the report by NDTV. Below is a tweet by Pratheesh Viswanath, founder of Hindu Sena Kendra. The article claimed that the elephant died in Malappuram.altnews
Kerala Elephant's Death: Trolls Peddled Fake News By Pinning Blame On Made-Up Muslim Names
One arrested in Kerala elephant killing case, more people under scanner
Kerala Forest Minister K Raju has said one person has been arrested over the killing of a pregnant elephant that triggered nationwide outrage earlier this week. The minister has said that it is not just this person and more people were involved in the brutal killing of the elephant and the police and forest department are carrying out further investigation to nab the others. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had said three suspects were under the scanner over the incident in which a pregnant elephant died after eating a pineapple stuffed with explosives. The elephant later drowned in a pond after the crackers burst in her mouth.
50-year-old woman set on fire by mafia group in Assam as she tries to stop land grab
A50-year-old woman was set on fire alive by a land mafia group in Assam as they attempted to kill her over a land dispute in Hojai district. Videos of the horrific incident went viral as locals shot videos.The victim identified as Saleha Begum was later rescued by police and admitted to a hospital.In her statement, the victim Saleha Begum said that the group had threatened to burn her alive. “It is our land. They set me on fire alive and tried to kill me. But I escaped with some injuries,” the woman said.The incident took place at Dakshin Samarali area under Murajhar police station in the central Assam district on Thursday where the land mafia group were allegedly trying to encroach on the land.
Every Senior Officer of Home Ministry’s Media Wing Shunted Out
Aweek after the official Facebook page of Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) put up pictures of alcoholic beverage along with photos of NDRF rescue efforts in Bengal during cyclone Amphan, entire media unit was shunted out on Friday. MHA media wing saw a complete revamp after almost all officers handling the unit were moved out. DG Vasudha Gupta, MHA spokesperson, will now look after PIB (Press Information Bureau) Fact Check unit, while DG of BOC (Bureau of Communication) in DAVP (Directorate of Advertising & Visual Publicity), Nitin Wakankar, will be the new spokesperson. Wakankar has earlier served as spokesperson of CBI and of Ministry of Defence.Deputy Director in MHA, Virat Majboor, has been moved to All India Radio and Shelat Harit Ketan has been shifted to DPD.Praveen Kavi, Deputy Director at PIB, has also made a comeback to the MHA. Kavi had earlier worked with the MHA media wing under the leadership of A Bharat Bhushan Babu, who crossed over to handle media in South block's ministry of defence after handing over charge to Vasudha Gupta when Union Home Minister Amit Shah took over.
Abu Dhabi Fund Mubadala to Invest Rs 9,093 Crore in Jio, 6th Mega Deal in 6 Weeks for RIL Unit
Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) on June 5 said Mubadala Investment Company, the Abu Dhabi-based sovereign investor, will invest Rs 9,093.60 crore in Jio Platforms for a 1.85 percent equity stake on a fully diluted basis.This will be the sixth investment in RIL in quick succession, following those by social media major Facebook, private equity funds Silver Lake, Vista Equity Partners, KKR & Co Inc, and General Atlantic.Over past six weeks, the digital business of Reliance Industries Ltd, known as Jio Platforms, has raised a striking Rs 87,655.35 from global investors for a total 19 per cent stake.RIL Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani said, "I am delighted that Mubadala, one of the most astute and transformational global growth investors has decided to partner us in our journey to propel India’s digital growth towards becoming a leading digital nation in the world."
Bhopal: Former CM Kamal Nath demands relief for clerics of all religions after minorities plea for reservations
BHOPAL: Taking lesson from past, former CM Kamal Nath has now demanded a relief package for clerics of all religions besides additional relief for religious places. Earlier, he had demanded a special relief package only for priests of temples- that had earned ire from all minority communities.Nath has written a letter to CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan urging him to provide financial assistance of Rs 5000 per month to all religious places and Rs 7500 per month to clerics of all religions.Nath in his letter has said that due to lockdown all religious places are closed and facing problem of maintenance. Even donations by common people have stopped coming due to lockdown, making sustenance of clerics including pujari, maulvis, guru and panth pradarshaks etc very difficult.Madhya Pradesh is a state where people of all faith including Hindu, Mslim, Sikh, Christians and others reside. Places of worships of all religions are facing difficulty therefore they should get this relief for at least three months, the letter read.
Muslim neighbours help Kashmiri Pandit family perform last rites of 75-year-old woman
AMuslim neighbourhood in North Kashmir's Bandipora district helped a Kashmiri Pandit family perform the last rites of a 75-year-old family member on Thursday.Sources told India Today TV that soon after the news of the death of 75-year-old woman, Rani Bhatt, Muslim neighbours came together to help the Kashmiri Pandit family in performing her last rites.Many people, amid Covid-19 scare, visited the deceased's family and expressed their condolences.Locals said that Rani Bhatt died on Wednesday night and was cremated on Thursday. Muslim neighbours performed her last rites as per Hindu rituals.
Delhi Could See Heavy Damage From Massive Earthquake Imminent In Himalayan Foothills, Warns Expert
The tremors that people in Delhi-NCR felt on Wednesday, when a minor earthquake of 3.2 magnitude on the Richter scale hit Noida, were the third such felt in just the past 5 days. The National Centre of Seismology has recorded around 10 such earthquakes in and around Delhi-NCR between April 12 and May 29 in 2020. The increasing frequency of the earthquakes has left residents worried, with social media messages doing the rounds that there could be “a big one around the corner”.An earthquake is imminent in the Himalayan foothills, said C.P. Rajendran, a professor at the geodynamic unit of the Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research in Bengaluru, but added that one could not ascertain exactly when it was going to happen. A study that Rajendran led in 2018 had found that an earthquake which took place some time between the years 1315 and 1440 CE unzipped a stretch of about 600 km, the length of the seismic gap stretching from Bhatpur in India to beyond Mohana Khola in Nepal in the central Himalayas.
Another Gujarat Congress MLA resigns ahead of Rajya Sabha polls
Rajkot :BRIJESH MERJA, the Congress MLA from Morbi, resigned as an MLA and a member of the party on Friday, thus becoming the third Congress legislator to desert the Opposition party just days ahead of the election to four Rajya Sabha seats in the state.With Merja’s resignation, the Congress tally in the 182-member Gujarat Assembly comes down to 65. It is 12 seats less than the 77 seats that the party had originally won in the general election to Gujarat Assembly in 2017. The tally has come down mostly due to defections of the party’s MLAs to the BJP. In March this year, five Congress MLAs had resigned in the run-up to the Rajya Sabha election.
Madhya Pradesh: BJP’s Balendu Shukla joins Congress ahead of bye-polls, Nath calls it ‘homecoming’
BJP leader Balendu Shukla switched camps to rejoin the Congress in Madhya Pradesh on Friday, ANI reported. The development comes ahead of the Assembly bye-polls in the state, likely to be held in Sept.The former state minister was part of the Congress but had reportedly quit the party in 2009 because of his differences with Jyotiraditya Scindia, who joined the BJP in March. Shukla is said to be displeased with Scindia’s entry into the saffron party.Shukla was welcomed back into the Congress fold at former chief minister Kamal Nath’s residence. The former chief minister called Shukla’s entry back to the party “a homecoming”. scroll
Congress nominates Mallikarjun Kharge for Rajya Sabha polls from Karnataka
Congress on Friday nominated former Union minister Mallikarjun Kharge as the candidate for biennial elections to the Rajya Sabha from Karnataka.“Congress president Sonia Gandhi has approved the candidature of Mallikarjun Kharge as Congress candidate for the ensuing biennial elections to the Rajya Sabha from Karnataka,” a party statement said.
Activist Aakar Patel faces FIR for allegedly urging Indians to emulate US protests
A first information report has been filed against human rights activist Aakar Patel for allegedly suggesting that Indians should emulate the protests currently going on in the United States against the custodial murder of an African-American man, The Hindu reported on Thursday. The JC Nagar Police in Bengaluru registered the FIR suo motu after taking cognisance of Patel’s tweet.Patel had posted video clips of the protests against the death of George Floyd in the US at the hands of the police. In his tweets, the former head of Amnesty International India had asked Muslims, Dalit, Advasis and women in India to protest in a similar fashion. Many people responded to his tweet and sought police action against him.
Trump sued over clearing peaceful protesters
South Africa's governing party said it is launching a "Black Friday" campaign in response to the "heinous murder" of George Floyd and "institutionalised racism" in the US, at home, in China and "wherever it rears its ugly head". A statement by the African National Congress said President Cyril Ramaphosa on Friday evening will address the launch of the campaign that calls on people to wear black on Fridays in solidarity. The campaign is also meant to highlight "deaths by citizens at the hands of security forces" in South Africa, which remains one of the world's most unequal countries a quarter-century after the end of the racist system of apartheid. Twitter has removed President Donald Trump's campaign tribute video to George Floyd on its platform, citing a copyright complaint.Rights group American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has sued the Trump administration, claiming officials violated the civil rights of protesters.Mayor of Washington, DC, called for the withdrawal from the city of military units sent from other states to deal with protesters.Los Angeles County Sheriff's office has said it will no longer enforce a curfew put in place to quell protests.Britain's embassy in Washington, DC has raised the issue of continuing protests in US with Trump administration, including the treatment of British journalists by police, a spokesman for Prime Minister Boris Johnson said. Meanwhile, Buffalo Police Commissioner Byron Lockwood has ordered the immediate suspension of the two officers involved in a video showing them pushing a man after a protest in Niagara Square. Local media reported that the man in the video was taken to the hospital.
Australia: NSW files suit to stop Black Lives Matter protest
Australia's most populous state, New South Wales, has lodged a legal application to stop a Black Lives Matter protest in Sydney, state Premier Gladys Berejiklian said on Friday.Thousands of people have pledged to attend a protest organised in Sydney on Saturday following the police killing of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man.
Twitter pulls down Trump video tribute to Floyd over copyright
Twitter has disabled President Trump's campaign tribute video to Floyd on its platform, citing a copyright complaint.The clip, which is a collation of photos and videos of protest marches and instances of violence in the aftermath of Floyd's death, has Trump speaking in the background."We respond to valid copyright complaints sent to us by a copyright owner or their authorised representatives," a Twitter representative said.
UN: 1,300 civilians killed in DR Congo as half a million flee
About 1,300 civilians have been killed in conflicts across the Democratic Republic of the Congo while more than half a million people were displaced by violence in a matter of months, UN said on Friday.UN rights chief Michelle Bachelet warned some of the massacres and attacks behind the killings and displacement "may amount to crimes against humanity and war crimes".
Israel disputes Jesus’ Palestinian origins
The official Twitter account for Israel has questioned Jesus’ Palestinian roots, claiming he was Jewish and not linked to a nationality.The comment came in response to a post by satirical account, which is run by award-winning comedy writer David Javerbaum, who questioned a common traditional Euro-centric depictions of Jesus with fair skin accompanied with a caption stating: “Privilege doesn’t get much whiter than making a Roman-era Palestinian look like this.” The reference comes amid growing debate surrounding “white privilege” in the aftermath of the latest racist killing of an African-American by police in US, leading to unprecedented protests and riots across the country.However, Israel – which in Hebrew means “one who struggles with God”, replied asserting Jesus’ Jewish heritage stating “God: Jesus was a Palestinian. Jesus: Hey Dad, remember when you gave that speech about Jewish values at my Bar Mitzvah?”
Israel 'blackmailing' Palestinians by withholding tax revenues
Israel is withholding tax revenues it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority for the month of May until the PA reactivates the security coordination agreement with Tel Aviv, Palestinian officials said.Chairman of the Palestinian General Authority for Civil Affairs, Minister Hussein Al-Sheikh said on Twitter that the Palestinian leadership has refused to receive the tax revenues for the month of May from Israel in implementation of President Mahmoud Abbas’s decision to stop security coordination with Israel.Palestinian government spokesman, Ibrahim Milhem said later that the government had rejected Israel’s “blackmail”.
Israel extends ban on imam’s entry to Al-Aqsa for 4 months
Israel Police extended an order banning Sheikh Ekrima Sabri, the president of the Supreme Islamic Council in Jerusalem, from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque for four months.Sabri said in a statement that occupation forces stormed his house and handed him an order that prevented him from entering Al-Aqsa Mosque for a period of four months. He added that this is part of Israel’s illegal policy aimed at targeting the Muslim holy site and contradicts Tel Aviv’s claim that it is a democratic state.“We will stay with Al-Aqsa, and we will defend Al-Aqsa,” he added.
Nancy Pelosi warns Israel it is ‘undermining’ vital pillars of US-Israel relation
Democrat Speaker of House of Representative Nancy Pelosi has waded into the debate concerning Israel’s planned annexation of the West Bank with a strongly worded warning to the Zionist state that it is undermining two of the fundamental pillars in Washington’s longstanding support for Tel Aviv: US national security interest and bipartisan support.Both are being jeopardised, said Pelosi in a webinar hosted by the Jewish Democratic Council of America (JDCA). Speaking to the pro-Israeli socially liberal American Jewish group, Pelosi, who represents California’s 12th congressional district, said: “Unilateral annexation puts the future at risk and undermines US national security interests.”
Canada joins Western governments in condemnation of Israel annexation
Dozens of Canadian politicians have pressured Ottawa to resist Israel’s planned annexation of the West Bank, joining many of their counterparts in the US, the UK and Europe, in a show of force against Israel’s violation of international law.Four cabinet members from the era of Prime Minister Jean Chrétien are among 58 former Canadian diplomats and politicians who added their names to a letter calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his government to show stronger resistance to Israeli annexation of the West Bank, planned for July.Signatories to the letter include former ambassadors to Israel who served under both liberal and conservative governments, as well as many other diplomats who represented Canada’s interests in the Middle East, Canadian news agency CBC reported on Tuesday.
Shaath: PA, Hamas in contact to resume reconciliation
Senior political adviser, Nabil Shaath, said the Palestinian Authority is in contact with Hamas in order to resume reconciliation talks and end the internal division.Speaking to Donia Al- Watan, Shaath said he is personally making contact with Hamas as well as holding discussions with the various parties working on the reconciliation file to develop a clear timetable to resume talks.Shaath said the ban on travel due to the coronavirus pandemic has negatively affected the resumption of talks, but there are suggestions to use virtual conference platforms to overcome these obstacles.
Israel president calls for calming settler disputes over West Bank annexation
President Reuven Rivlin called on Israelis to calm the tone of disagreement among them over Tel Aviv’s plans to annex nearly 30 per cent of the occupied West Bank.“We must not prevent questions, doubts or criticism from any political side. Disagree – yes. Argue – absolutely. But the verbal violence, the name-calling, the ridiculing, and the contempt must stop,” Rivlin said in a statement.Rivlin’s comments came a day after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “strongly condemned” statements by a settler leader about the plan, according to Haaretz.
Algeria party calls for consensual committee to consider constitution amendment
Justice and Development Front in Algeria called on Thursday for the creation of a consensual commission to study the proposals for the draft amendment to the constitution under discussion, instead of designating the current team of experts for the mission.On 7 May, Algerian presidency announced the expert committee’s proposals to amend the constitution. The draft had been distributed to the political class for discussion, before the committee completed the final version to be presented to a popular referendum.The party, headed by Abdullah Jaballah, announced in a statement that: “The current authority is called today to reconsider this path, especially regarding the methodology of preparing the preliminary draft to amend the constitution, which should be the subject of a dialogue and a discussion, far from the policy of the fait accompli.”He considered that: “It is necessary to exclude the return of the committee, which prepared the draft and that was previously designated on the one hand, and to progress towards a consensus by appointing another more consensual commission that has wide representation, on the other hand.”
‘PUBG game violated Islamic beliefs’: Mysterious Jungle in ‘idol worship’ row
PUBG (PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds) has been making headlines ever since it was first released in 2017. The video game has been played by millions since then. However, its violent themes have attracted scrutiny and criticism from some quarters.Gulf News on Thursday reported that 'Mysterious Jungle', the latest mode of PUBG, has triggered fury in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.'Mysterious Jungle' mode of PUBG has new features and is reported to be exclusive to the ‘Sanhok’ map. What has upset people is apparently the presence of totems in 'Mysterious Jungle’."In the game, totems are powerful idols and by praying to them, players can restore their health, and get consumables like energy drinks, health kit, etc. However, the fact that you have to worship these idols in the game has offended Muslim players all over the world," Gulf News reported.Gulf News quoted Dr Bassam Al Shatti, Professor of faith at College of Sharia, Kuwait University, as saying, "video games feature many pros and cons, but PUBG has violated Islamic beliefs regarding prostration and bowing to idols, and this is the greatest sin in Islam, because prostrating and bowing is worship and glorification solely and exclusively to Almighty Allah".Al Shatti told Gulf News “The special draw of gaming that makes it the preferred pastime of so many millions of kids and adults is not just entertainment, it is dangerous because it teaches them polytheism, so they prefer it and become addicted to it."
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Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:32 PM)