25 July 2020

25 JULY NEWS: Non-Christian Adivasis in Jharkhand warn RSS, VHP against co-opting them as Hindus. Yogi Adityanath Reviews Ram Temple Ceremony Prep, Promises "Deepotsava" Everywhere. Jamaat-e-Islami Hind endorses Delhi Minorities Commission report on Delhi’s violence targeting Muslims


25 JULY 2020. 03 ZU AL HIJJAH 1441. Vol-12, No-266


Non-Christian Adivasis in Jharkhand warn RSS, VHP against co-opting them as Hindus

Non-Christian Adivasis in Jharkhand, who worship Nature and are opposed to idol worship, appear to be upset at attempts by RSS and Vishwa Hindu Parishad to collect soil from ‘Sarna Sthal’ for offerings at the proposed Ram Temple in Ayodhya on August 5. Following a meeting on Friday of the adherents of the ‘Sarna Dharma’, a call has been given to foil the attempts of the RSS and the VHP. Shiva Kacchap heading the ‘Central Adivasi Sena’ informed the media that the meeting was attended by various tribal bodies including Adivasi Sangharsh Morcha and Parha Samajik Utthan Sansthan. The priests or the Pahans, he said, had been advised to stop VHP supporters from reaching the Sarna Sthal and desecrate the place of worship.Dr Karma Oraon, a prominent academic, activist and ideologue, warned the Sangh Parivar against playing with the religious sentiment of the adivasis and refrain from the propaganda that ‘Sarna Dharma’ and Hindu ‘Sanathan Dharma’ are one and the same. The Sangh Parivar, he said, has been trying very hard to claim that all non-Christian adivasis are Hindus while re-converting the Christian adivasis. The latest attempt to collect soil from the ‘ Sarna’ and take them to Ayodhya, he alleged, is part of the same exercise. Observers, however, also see an attempt to win over lost political ground in Jharkhand by the Sangh Parivar.  Many prominent ‘Sarna’ leaders in BJP are uncomfortable and some of them, in private conversations, claimed that they would have no option but to sever their relations with the party if RSS and the VHP continue to upset followers of the ‘Sarna’.


Yogi Adityanath Reviews Ram Temple Ceremony Prep, Promises "Deepotsava" Everywhere

Ayodhya: Celebrations will light up every home and temple on the nights of August 4 and 5, UP CM Yogi Adityanath promised on Saturday, as he visited Ayodhya, 10 days before the scheduled grand groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of the Ram Temple.  Chief Minister began his Ayodhya tour with a trip to Ram Janmabhoomi complex that will be the venue of the August 5 ceremony that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is also scheduled to attend. He was seen offering prayers to Lord Ram at the site. Later, Yogi Adityanath met with officials and religious leaders over preparations for ceremony."There will be 'deepotsava' in all houses and temples on the nights of 4th and 5th August," he said at the meeting attended by the Ayodhya MP, MLAs, members of Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust and local administration."Ram Chandra Paramhans's (the late head of the Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas) soul must feel content that his dreams are being fullfilled. This is a big landmark for all saints who have given their life for the temple," Adityanath said.The groundbreaking ceremony or "*bhoomi poojan*" will be held inside the Ram Janmabhoomi complex and a total of 150 to 200 people are likely to attend, with social distancing norms in the times of the coronavirus pandemic.


Soil from RSS HQ sent to Ayodhya for Ram temple 'bhoomi pujan'

Nagpur: Soil from RSS headquarters here has been sent to Ayodhya for the August 5 'bhoomi pujan' ceremony of the Ram temple, a VHP functionary said on Friday.Talking to PTI, Govind Shende, the Vidarbha prant pramukh of VHP, said that soil from a temple in Ramtek and water from the confluence of five rivers, both near Nagpur city, have also been sent for the upcoming event.


RSS meet discusses Ram temple, India-China stand-off: Report

Top office-bearers of RSS discussed Ram temple, the Sino-India stand-off and other issues facing the country amidst the Covid-19 crisis during the four-day meeting which concluded here on Friday, Sangh sources said on Saturday.RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and other office-bearers discussed the ways to make the proposed “bhoomi pujan” of a Ram temple in Ayodhya a big event by complying with Covid-19 protocols, they said.Strengthening the Swadeshi movement to counter the Chinese expansionism was also discussed, according to the sources. RSS chief also held virtual talks with some functionaries based in Nagpur, Delhi and other places during the conclave, they added.


Unfair not to invite Ranjan Gogoi to Ayodhya: Yashwant Sinha takes brutal potshot at former CJI?

Former Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha has said that it was ‘very unfair’ to not invite former Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi to Ayodhya for the foundation laying ceremony of Ram Temple, scheduled for 5 August.Sinha tweeted, “It is very unfair not to invite Ranjan Gogoi to the foundation laying ceremony of the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya on August 5. In fact, he shd be the chief guest.”


Babri mosque case: Advani tells special court he’s innocent, implicated due to ideological inclination

Veteran BJP leader L K Advani on Friday recorded his statement before a special CBI court in the 1992 Babri mosque demolition case and denied any involvement in the conspiracy to pull down the disputed structure, LiveLaw reported. The statement of 92-year-old former deputy prime minster was recorded through video conferencing in the court of special Judge S K Yadav with his counsels Vimal Kumar Srivastava, KK Mishra and Abhishek Ranjan present in the court.CBI lawyers Lalit Singh, P Chakravarti and RK Yadav were also present. Advani denied his involvement in the alleged conspiracy along with 'Kar sevaks' to demolish the disputed structure in Ayodhya on December 6, 1992. He pleaded he was completely innocent and was unnecessarily dragged in the case owing to political reasons.Advani told the special CBI judge that the investigation was conducted under political pressure and the charge sheet was forwarded on the basis of fabricated evidence.The special judge put forth 1,050 questions to Advani and he answered them very cautiously, denying every allegation of conspiracy and arguing there was no occasion to make him stand on trial.As the judge narrated to him the contents of some video clippings, newspaper reports and other evidences relating to the incident in 1992, Advani shrugged them off, saying they were totally false and produced in the court due to political influence and ideological inclination.When the judge referred to evidences regarding his alleged provocative speeches to Kar sevaks, the BJP veteran told him that the evidence was false and the investigators included the video cassettes and newspapers for political malice and under political influence.


Babri Masjid demolition case: ‘If I am sent to gallows, I will be blessed,’ says BJP’s Uma Bharti

BJP leader Uma Bharti on Saturday said the judgement in the Babri Masjid demolition case, in which she is an accused, does not matter, NDTV reported. Senior BJP leaders LK Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi have also been accused of criminal conspiracy in the case.“I was called by the court for my statement and I have told the court what was true,” she told the television channel. “It does not matter to me what the judgement will be. If I am sent to the gallows, I will be blessed. The place where I was born will be happy.”


No Link Between CAA and Conversions of Afghan, Rohingya Muslims: Ravi Nair

New Delhi:Noted civil rights activist Ravi Nair, who has been at forefront of those opposing the CAA, sees no link between CAA and the reported cases of conversion from Islam to Christianity by Rohingya and Afghan refugees.He says such conversions have been taking place for the past 40 years, much before the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party or previous Congress-led government thought of bringing in the controversial legislation.The number of such conversions is negligible when compared with the size of the foreign refugees in India. “These are frustrated people who see no future in India. Certain fundamentalist Christian groups prey on them with the promise to send them to America or Canada. Mainstream Christian organisations or big churches are not part of this,” the well-known rights defender told Clarion India. He was commenting on a news report in Economic Times that said CAA had prompted many Afghan and Rohingya Muslim refugees to convert to Christianity so as to become eligible for Indian citizenship. The report also claimed that at least 25 such cases of Afghan Muslims converting to Christianity had been flagged by central agencies as part of an ongoing assessment.Nair, who is convener of Alliance Against CAA & NRC, an association of social organisations and civil rights groups as well as eminent individuals opposed to CAA and NRC, said CAA, though extremely objectionable, could not be blamed for this.He added, “I came across such conversions first time around 1980. Then the conversions involved Iranian and Sri Lankan Tamils, as also Afghans. Of late, Rohingyas have joined the bandwagon.”Clarion India


Jamaat-e-Islami Hind endorses Delhi Minorities Commission report on Delhi’s violence targeting Muslims

New Delhi:Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH), India’s biggest socio-cultural organization, has fully supported the Delhi Minorities Commission report on anti-Muslim violence in parts of Northeast Delhi in February this year. Addressing a virtual press meet on Saturday, JIH Vice-President Engineer Mohammad Salim also supported DMC’s recommendations for setting up of a five-member committee to investigate the riots as also “the complicity or abdication of duty by the police during the violence”.The Jamaat also supported the DMC’s demand of converting into FIRs all those complaints which were not registered by the police, recording statements of victims of violence under Section 164 of CrPC, provide protection to riot victims and reviewing police chargesheets.Stating that the “riots were not spontaneous, but well-planned”, Engineer Salim pointed out that it was not a violence between two communities as was being projected by the police and investigative agencies but “it was one-sided attack targeting Muslims to teach them a lesson”. Commenting on the police role during the violence in which policemen were seen on videos abetting the attackers or directly taking part in attacks on Muslims and destruction of their properties, the Jamaat leader said that it was very “shocking and disappointing”. In response to a question, Malik Moatasim Khan, JIH Secretary for Community Issues, said the riots were planned to suppress the movement against CAA and NRC and that is why CAA protesters were being arrested and charged under stringent UAPA by linking them with Delhi riots. He said that as many as 200 petitions against CAA are currently pending in the Supreme Court.India Tomorrow


Counsel drama in riots cases irks Delhi HC

Delhi High Court on Friday expressed irritation over the appearance of a new counsel for the Delhi Police in a petition seeking cancellation of bail given to Faisal Farooq, owner of Rajdhani Public School, in connection with a Northeast Delhi riots case.“Why are you unnecessarily wasting time? Why don’t you sit together? Both the governments (Centre and Delhi government). This issue needs to be resolved,” said Justice Suresh Kumar Kait.The court’s observation came after it was informed through Centre’s Standing Counsel Amit Mahajan that SPP Amit Prasad has been appointed by the President of India to represent Delhi Police in the matter.Delhi government’s Standing Counsel (Criminal) Rahul Mehra said, “I fail to understand how many people will appear in this matter.”


Delhi riots: Court grants bail to Suhel as no material against him in charge sheet

ADelhi court Friday granted bail to a man in a case related to communal violence in northeast Delhi, saying he was the sole accused chargesheeted in the matter but was not seen in any video footage or named by any person. Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Yadav granted bail to Suhel on furnishing a bail bond of Rs 20,000 with one surety of like amount.The court directed him to install the 'Aarogya Setu' app and ensure that his mobile phone was in working condition. It also directed him not to tamper with the evidence or influence any witness in the case and to maintain peace and harmony in the locality.PTI


Delhi Riots: Police Arrest 5 Based on One Confession, Register 4 Identical FIRs on One Incident

New Delhi: While many complainants have struggled to file or have the accused named in FIRs, in connection with the riots that occurred in North East Delhi, an analysis of the charge-sheets and FIRs by a national daily on the other hand, has revealed that four of them were identical and allegedly pertained to just one incident. A report in The Hindu said that four FIRs and their corresponding charge-sheets were found to be identical and pertaining to a case of rioting and damage to property in Jafrabad. The police, in connection with these cases, also arrested five persons – Gulfam alias Sonu Chikna, Osama, Atir, Shan Mohammed alias Shanu, and Zarif alias Mota – on the basis of a “confession” by just one person, Gulfam, who himself was arrested in a case of rioting. Going into the details of FIRs, the report said in one of them, No. 112, the complainant, Balbir Singh of Ghonda village, said that he found his T-210 Maujpur Main Road property near Victor Public School burnt down when he returned to it after a day’s gap on February 25. He estimated the loss to be around Rs 8-12 lakhs.Lawyers privy to the case have already pointed out the discrepancies in the police’s theory. As per the report, one lawyer questioned as to how the police in FIR No. 50 had stated that Gulfam was arrested at 7.10 pm and in earlier charge-sheets noted that the other 2 – Atir and Osama – were held at 6.10 pm. “If Gulfam was arrested at 7.10 p.m., how could Osama and Atir be arrested on his instance an hour earlier?” he told The Hindu.However, the report said that in the four charge-sheets, Gulfam’s time of arrest has been shown to be 4 pm.thewire


Delhi riots: Armaan denied bail

A Delhi court has denied bail to an accused Armaan in a case related to violence in Delhi in, considering the gravity of the offence and observing that his objective was to eliminate persons from another community. Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Yadav in an order noted, “The kind of weapons which the other co-accused persons with applicant were carrying clearly go on to show that it was an unlawful assembly, object whereof was to eliminate persons from other community and cause damage to public and private property. In any case this is a matter of trial.”IANS


Delhi communal riots: Violence-hit Gokulpuri market restarts after 5 months

5 months after the communal riots that had engulfed northeast Delhi, the traders in Gokulpuri tyre market have started picking up pieces with the help from Jamiat Ulama-i- Hind (JUH). The organisation has reconstructed 97 shops, which were ransacked and set on fire by the rioters.One of the victims, Mohd Khalid (60), said restoration of the shop had got his life back on track but still a lot is to be done.“The riots had rendered me penniless. The government promised Rs five lakh as compensation but I was paid only Rs 1.5 lakh. The financial assistance I received was exhausted as I have no other source of income. I will use my savings, which I had kept for my daughter’s wedding, to purchase stock,” said Kahlid, the father of five children—3 girls and two boys.On Friday, redeveloped shops were handed over to their owners in the presence of east Delhi DM Shashi Kaushal and other senior officials of district. Maulana Mahmood Madani, general secretary of JUH, said that the organisation is committed to a humanistic approach and “for us the service to mankind is the utmost duty.”


Delhi Police books JNU scholar for ‘anti national’ tweet on Army and RSS

New Delhi: Delhi Police has booked JNU research scholar Sajid Bin Sayed for an alleged “anti-national” tweet maligning Indian Army and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, ThePrint has learnt.An FIR was registered against Sayed on 8 July on the basis of this tweet — a screenshot of which was given to the police: “Indian Military execute systematic genocide of Kashmiris which is devised by RSS. The BJP govt should stop their territorial greed and be ready to accept Kashmiris’ right to self determination guaranteed by UN. It’s high time to intervene in the issue by international bodies. #Kashmir”The tweet does not appear to be on Sayed’s timeline anymore.Sayed was booked for “provocation with an intent to cause a riot” and “provoking breach of peace” on the complaint of one Tajinder Yadav, a BJP worker. ThePrint


Kerala HC rejects anticipatory bail plea of Rehana Fathima

Kerala High Court on Friday dismissed an anticipatory bail plea filed by women activist Rehana Fathima.Fathima, a former BSNL employee hailing from Kochi, had hit the headlines in Oct.2018 when she was forced to abandon her plan to pray at the Sabarimala temple.2 complaints were filed at different police stations against Fatima after a furore over a video clip she posted on the social media in which her minor son and daughter were seen painting on her semi-nude body.IANS


NIA Court Refuses Bail to Anand Teltumbde

Mumbai: A special NIA court on Friday rejected ‘default’ bail application of scholar and activist Anand Teltumbde, who was arrested in the Elgar Parishad case.Teltumbde had sought bail under section 167 (2) of Code of Criminal Procedure on July 13 as the NIA failed to file a chargesheet against him within 90 days as mandated under the UAPA.Such bail is sometimes called default bail. But special judge D.E. Kothalikar rejected the application. On July 12, the court had granted the NIA 90 days’ extension to file a chargesheet.PTI


Varavara Rao’s family writes to NHRC, says not provided information about his health

Mumbai :FAMILY MEMBERS of writer-poet Varavara Rao, who has been behind bars since 2018 in the Elgaar Parishad case, have written Friday to NHRC stating they have been denied any information on the 80-year-old’s medical condition and the treatment being provided to him at a private hospital where he was shifted following the commission’s order last week.Rao had tested positive for the novel coronavirus last week after he was shifted from Taloja Central Jail to the state-run JJ Hospital. NHRC had on July 17 recommended that he be shifted to a super-speciality hospital for further treatment, following which Rao was shifted to the Nanavati Hospital.


RSS workers chant Jai Sri Ram outside activist Saket Gokhale’s house, threaten his mother

RTI activist and former journalist Saket Gokhale said RSS workers chanted ‘Jai Sri Ram’ outside his residence in Thane, and even threatened his mother on Friday. Sharing a video on Twitter, Gokhale wrote, “Urgent: RSS workers are outside my house chanting Jai Shri Ram. They just threatened my mother. Request urgent assistance from Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh and Thane Rural Police.”


RTI Activist’s Home in Maharashtra Attacked by Hindutva Men for Questioning Ram Temple Ceremony

NEW DELHI:RTI activist and journalist Saket Gokhale’s home in Thane, Maharashtra, was surrounded by goons chanting ‘Jai Sri Ram’, according to the posts on his Twitter account. Gokhale had sought through Allahabad High Court cancellation of a Ram Mandir-related event in Ayodhya to be held on August 5. He had also exposed an alleged nexus between BJP and Election Commission. Sharing a video on Twitter, Gokhale wrote, “Urgent: RSS workers are outside my house chanting Jai Shri Ram. They just threatened my mother. Request urgent assistance from Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh and Thane Rural Police.”A subsequent post said that Thane police had filed an FIR in the case. Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh has also responded to Goakhale’s tweets and assured that he is taking “serious cognizance” of the matter and immediate protection will be provided to him.A mere three hours before his plea for help on Twitter, Goakhale had said that he had received “138 calls in the last 10 minutes from BJP/RSS workers”.clarionindia


SC to resume hearing 2009 contempt case against Prashant Bhushan from August 4

The Supreme Court will begin hearing arguments in a 2009 contempt case against advocate Prashant Bhushan and former editor-in-chief of Tehelka magazine Tarun Tejpal on August 4. The case relates to Bhushan’s statements against some former Chief Justices of India and then Chief Justice S H Kapadia in an interview to the magazine in 2009. A bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra fixed the date after the counsel appearing for them sought more time to study their briefs. The bench, also comprising Justices B R Gavai and Krishna Murari, which heard the matter through videoconferencing, did not agree to Bhushan’s father and senior advocate Shanti Bhushan’s request to take up the case only after physical hearings resume in the court. “All sorts of matters (are) being argued through videoconferencing. Even Constitution Bench is hearing cases,” Justice Mishra remarked.


Twitter blocks Prashant Bhushan’s tweets after Supreme Court initiates contempt proceedings

Twitter has blocked two tweets posted by lawyer Prashant Bhushan after the Supreme Court initiated contempt proceedings against him. Both tweets are not blocked with a standard message reading in its place, “This Tweet from @pbhushan1 has been withheld in IN in response to a legal demand.”The Supreme Court Bench comprising Justices Justices Arun Mishra, BR Gavai and Krishna Murari had also come down heavily on Twitter for not removing the contentious tweets posted by Bhushan.The Supreme Court Bench had contended that Bhushan’s tweets had brought ‘the administration of justice in disrepute and are capable of undermining the dignity and authority of the institution … and the office of the Chief Justice of India in particular.’


Anti-CAA riots: JNU student  Sharjeel Imam charged with sedition

Delhi Police on Saturday charged former JNU student Sharjeel Imam with sedition before a court here for allegedly inciting people to indulge in activities detrimental to the sovereignty and integrity of the country.The police made the allegations in its charge sheet filed before the court in a case related to anti-CAA riots earlier this year.The agency filed the final report under various sections.“He is accused of delivering seditious speeches and inciting a particular section of community to indulge in unlawful activities, detrimental to sovereignty and integrity of the nation,” the charge sheet said.The court is likely to take up the matter for hearing on July 27. He is currently lodged in Guwahati Jail and has been found to be coronavirus positive.


Significant number of ISIS terrorists in Kerala, Karnataka, claims UN report

A UN report on terrorism has warned that there are “significant numbers” of ISIS terrorists in Kerala and Karnataka, noting that al-Qaida in the Indian Subcontinent terror group, which reportedly has between 150 and 200 militants from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Myanmar, is planning attacks in the region. 26th report of the Analytical Support and Sanctions Monitoring Team concerning ISIS, al-Qaida and associated individuals and entities said that al-Qaida in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) operates under the Taliban umbrella from Nimruz, Helmand and Kandahar provinces of Afghanistan.“The group reportedly has between 150 and 200 members from Bangladesh, India, Myanmar and Pakistan. The current leader of AQIS is Osama Mahmood…, who succeeded the late Asim Umar… AQIS is reportedly planning retaliation operations in the region to avenge the death of its former leader,” it said.PTI


2018 sedition, UAPA case: 11 arrests, Kashmir link and a suicide brings Punjab Police, NIA probes under lens

Amritsar: ALLEGED suicide of a 23-year-old priest the same day he was interrogated by NIA in Mohali earlier this month has brought under scrutiny a Punjab police case of sedition and UAPA against 30 men, mostly in their twenties. The case was registered at Sultanwind after pro-Khalistan slogans were found painted on walls in the area. Among accused was US-based Gurpatwant Singh Pannu of Sikhs For Justice (SFJ). Challan was filed in March 2019. Punjab Police investigated the case for 18 months before transferring it to NIA in April this year.A perusal of the police challan against 11 of 30 accused, who remain in custody, throws up more questions than answers.As per the challan, one of the accused — Bikramjit Singh — said that his relative Bhupinder Singh from Srinagar had promised to arrange for weapons to pursue the agenda of Khalistan along with SFJ, which was not banned in 2018.He had told police that he could accompany a party to raid the homes of Bhupinder Singh and other accused, including teacher Sukhbir Singh, Davinder Singh, Sandeep Singh and Harjeet Singh, all from Srinagar, to “recover weapons and posters of Khalistan”. While the police booked these men for sedition, they did little to trace them.Indian Express spoke to two accused in Srinagar — Sukhbir Singh and Davinder Singh — who said they knew each other and were social workers.Both claimed they came to know about the case against them for the first time in March this year, after J&K police questioned them in connection with the 2018 FIR.


Gujarat's  Sanjay Nagar slum rehabilitation project: Hardik Patel slams BJP, lends support to agitating slum oustees

Vadodara :Gujarat Congress working president Hardik Patel visited Vadodara on Saturday to lend support to the ongoing agitation by residents of Sanjay Nagar in Warasiya area whose slums were razed as part of a rehabilitation project in 2017. The residents have been agitating for over three weeks as they are yet to get their reconstructed homes.Hardik said that despite projecting itself as a ‘Hindu party’, the BJP has turned deaf ears to over 1,800 “Hindu” beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana scheme identified by the civic body before it razed their slums in 2017.Following several protests and memorandums that went unheeded, the beneficiaries have now erected tents at the site seeking action against the VMC and chanting slogans against the state government.


SC gives 6-month extension to panel probing Hyderabad encounter

The Supreme Court on Friday extended by six more months the time granted to the commission constituted to inquire into the encounter of four men accused of raping and killing a veterinary surgeon in Hyderabad on December 6.The apex court had set up a three-member commission, headed by former Supreme Court judge Justice V S Sirpurkar on December 12, following a petition which contended that the encounter was a fake one. The SC had originally given the Commission — also comprising former Bombay High Court judge Justice Rekha S Baldota and ex-CBI director D R Karthikeyan — six months from the date on which it started the inquiry to submit its report.


Telangana HC to Twitter: Explain silence over Islamophobia on platform

HYDERABAD: Telangana high court on Friday made it clear that Twitter Inc must respond to the notices being issued by it and explain as to why it had remained silent when hate-mongers were using its space to spread hatred against Islam. Asserting that mere deletion of hate tweets would not suffice, the court said attributing the spread of coronavirus to the religion was unfair.A bench of Chief Justice Raghvendra Singh Chauhan and Justice B Vijaysen Reddy was hearing a public interest litigation plea filed by advocate Khaja Aijazuddin, who brought to the notice of the court various hashtags such as #Islamiccoronavirusjihad, #Coronajihad, #Tablighijamat, #Nizamuddinidiots, #Tablighi Jamat Virus’, etc, purposefully created to spread hatred against Islam and Muslims.


Govt diluted Bankruptcy Code, its steps hurt RBI’s move on bad loans: Ex-RBI Governor  Urjit Patel

Former RBI Governor Urjit Patel has heavily criticised the government for diluting Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) and the powers of the central bank, saying this undermined efforts made since 2014 to clean up the bad loan mess. In his new book Overdraft: Saving the Indian Saver, Patel has said that the Supreme Court’s April 2019 verdict had not found RBI’s February 2018 one-day default regulation on the insolvency process “problematic” – however, the subsequent (June 7, 2019) circular issued by the central bank had diluted this aspect, making the insolvency regime “vulnerable and brittle”.It had also delayed the process, helping many defaulters escape the bankruptcy court. The February 2018 circular, issued when Patel was Governor, had forced banks to classify borrowers as defaulters immediately, and had brought several large defaulters to the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT).“Lawyers who had agreed to represent the RBI in the SC dropped out at the eleventh hour, literally the night before the hearing,” Patel has written. “Striking down the February 2018 circular has made the insolvency regime vulnerable, possibly brittle.”


Income Tax Department to share PAN, TDS and bank account details with 10 agencies under NATGRID

 Income Tax Department will share PAN and bank account details of any entity with 10 investigative and intelligence agencies, including the CBI and the NIA, under the integrated counter-terrorism platform NATGRID, according to an official order.The Central Board of Direct Taxes, which frames policy for the I-T Department, said in a July 21 order that information like permanent account number (PAN), Tax Deduction and Collection Account Number (TAN), bank account details, summary of IT Returns and tax deducted at source (TDS) and “any other information as mutually agreed” will be shared with the 10 agencies.PTI


Row over Rs 50 lakh funding to Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust and alleged link to Zakir Naik: report

New Delhi: Controversy has broken out over alleged funding to Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust (RGCT), with Enforcement Directorate (ED) probe unearthing sensational details. ED probe into Rajiv Gandhi Foundation (RGF) has revealed Rs 50 lakh transaction between Zakir Naik’s NGO and RGCT, reports Republic TV.During the course of investigation, it came to light that Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust received Rs 50 lakh from Islamic Research Foundation.


Son of motor mechanic from Aligarh tops US high school exam

In a tale of success in the face of odds, the son of a motor mechanic in Aligarh -- Mohammad Shadab -- has topped his high school class in the US, where he is studying as an exchange student on a scholarship.According to Mohd. Shadab's father, Ashad Noor, who works as a motor mechanic in Aligarh, his son had been selected to study at the Belfast Area High School in Maine, USA through the Kennedy Luger Youth Exchange Study (YES) Scholarship programme of Rs. 20 lakhs.He said that before he went to the USA, Shadab was the student of Minto Circle Middle School of AMU and he dreamed of becoming an IAS officer.But now, when he has seen a different culture in US, he wants to become a Human Rights Officer in United Nations, defending the human rights of the oppressed classes. He wants to serve humanity.



Jamia Millia Team Wins Robotics Competition Hosted By IIT Bombay

New Delhi: A team of four students of Faculty of Engineering, Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI), secured first position in theme Construct-O-Bot of eYantra-2019 Robotics Competition (eYRC-2019) hosted by IIT Bombay. Hundreds of teams from various engineering colleges of the country competed with each other for 6 different themes in the competition. Team 2541 comprising of Computer Science Engineering second year students Ifa Zareen, Shahrukh Khan and Saif Ali Khan, and Abhishek Shukla of Electrical Engineering of JMI bagged the first position in theme Construct-O-Bot, a statement from the Delhi-based central university said.



Sheikh Hasina failed to meet Indian envoy despite requests: Dhaka daily

A prominent newspaper of Bangladesh has said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina did not meet India’s High Commissioner despite repeated requests for a meeting in the last four months.Bhorer Kagoj, a prominent daily, has reported that all Indian projects have slowed down since the re-election of Prime Minister Hasina in 2019 with Chinese infrastructure projects receiving more support from Dhaka. “Despite India's concern, Bangladesh has given the contract of building an airport terminal in Sylhet to a Chinese company. Indian High Commissioner Riva Ganguly Das tried for 4 months to get an appointment with Prime Minister of Bangladesh but did not get it. Bangladesh has not even sent a note of appreciation to India in response to Indian assistance for COVID-19”, said newspaper's editor Shyamal Dutta in an article on the recent tilt of Dhaka towards Pakistan and China. Beijing Urban Construction Group (BUCG) has received the contract for building a new terminal in MAG Osmania Airport of Sylhet that borders India's northeastern region and is, therefore, considered a sensitive area for New Delhi.  A diplomatic source from the Bangladesh High Commission here has confirmed that Indian envoy had sought an appointment with Ms Hasina but it did not materialise. The comments about the state of bilateral diplomatic ties is timely as Ms Hasina received a phone call from Prime Minister Imran Khan of Pakistan on Wednesday. Though Dhaka refused to give more details of the conversation, Pakistan’s official news agency reported that Mr. Khan informed Ms Hasina about the situation in Kashmir and sought “resolution” of the dispute. India, in response on Thursday, appreciated Bangladesh saying that Dhaka considers Kashmir an internal matter of India.


Agreement with China on early, complete disengagement: India

With Chinese reluctance to step back further from Pangong Tso and Patrolling Point 17A at Gogra stalling disengagement of troops along the Line of Actual Control in Ladakh, Indian and Chinese diplomats held talks Friday, and New Delhi said both sides agreed on “early and complete disengagement”.In Beijing, the Chinese Foreign Ministry, commenting on the virtual meeting of the Working Mechanism for Consultation & Coordination on India-China Border Affairs, said both sides “affirmed the positive progress made in disengaging the frontline border troops of the two countries” and would maintain dialogue “through military and diplomatic channels” to “promote further de-escalation”.


Ladakh deadlock sparks fear of new status quo, military options being explored

As China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) shows no signs of pulling back from friction points in Ladakh at LAC, anxiety over China altering the status quo has increased in the security establishment and among those observing developments.As a stalemate continues, Indian patrol troops are unable to go up to the LAC as they did before.While the government clarified that it is a temporary situation until the disengagement process is over, many feel it could alter the status quo if the situation continues for long.The disengagement planned between Indian and Chinese troops hit a dead end as some of the friction areas still remain tense, with troops continuing to be separated only by metres. Major General Ashok Mehta (retd) feels the disengagement dialogue cannot be left to the the military commanders alone.


Punjab CM hails Canada's rejection of Khalistani 'Referendum 2020', urges other nations to follow suit

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has welcomed Canada's decision not to recognise the results of the 'Referendum 2020' organised by pro-Khalistan group Sikhs for Justice (SFJ). Chief Minister said he hopes other countries will follow Canada's example and reject the secessionist 'Referendum 2020', which the SFJ was promoting to divide India along communal lines.Amarinder Singh was reacting to a media report quoting a spokesperson of the foreign ministry of Canada, who said "Canada respects the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of India, and the Government of Canada will not recognise the referendum."


Pakistan Returns 200-year-old Gurudwara in Balochistan Back to Sikhs After Restoration

A 200-year-old Sikh temple that served as a school for Muslim girls for seven decades was returned to the Sikh community in Quetta, enabling them to worship there for the first time in 73 years, officials said. The temple stood empty for a year or 2 when most Sikhs left Pakistan for neighbouring India after British partitioned the subcontinent into separate nations in 1947, following two centuries of colonial rule.Under the government’s guardianship, a school was later set up in the temple building, which remained functional until recently, when Sikhs won a legal battle to have the property returned, temple custodian Govind Singh said.He said Sikhs living in Quetta were delighted to get back to their temple.AP


Kashmir saffron gets GI certification,Lt Guv calls it ‘historic’

Central Govt issued certification of geographical indication (GI) for saffron grown in Kashmir Valley.  Calling it a historic step in bringing the valley’s brand on the global map with authentication, Lieutenant Governor G C Murmu said, “with GI tag, Kashmir saffron will acquire more prominence in export market and it would help farmers get the best remunerative price.”According to Principal Secretary Agriculture Production Department Navin K Choudhary, the GI certification will stop prevalent adulteration of Kashmir saffron and authenticated saffron will fetch much better prices.


“RSS-BJP want Jammu to be Muslim free,” says Gujjar leader after authorities demolish 5 Gujjar houses

Srinagar: Stating that BJP and RSS is hell-bent on dislocating Muslims in Jammu, the Gujjar Muslims are anguished over “selective” demolition in Bandi area of Jammu city.According to reports, on 18 July the Finance and Forest Department demolished houses belonging to the Gujjar and Bakarwal community as a part of the demolition drive to root out people “living illegally”.The reports said that the demolition drive came a day after an order by the Jammu and Kashmir High Court to remove the illegal occupation. The Jammu district administration demolished houses of people, that it claimed, were living illegally in areas like Sidra, Ragoda, Bandi Mohalla, and Lower Dwada.However, the demolition drive has raised eyebrows, with people questioning the selective nature of the demolition. Gujar leader Chowdari Nazakat Kathana told that over five residential houses were demolished in a short notice forcing the inhabitants to live under an open sky amid COVID-19 and scorching heat.


Rajnath, Israel minister talk about enhancing defence ties

New Delhi :Defence Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to his Israeli counterpart on Friday about enhancing defence engagement between both countries.The government said in a statement that during Singh’s telephonic conversation with Israel’s Defence Minister Benjamin Gantz, both “expressed satisfaction at the progress of strategic cooperation between 2 countries and discussed possibilities of further strengthening the defence engagements”2 ministers also expressed “satisfaction at the ongoing collaboration in research and development in fighting pandemic COVID-19 which will not only benefit the two countries but also aid the larger humanitarian cause”, the statement read. Singh also invited “greater participation of Israeli defence companies under new liberalised FDI regime in defence manufacturing” and 2 “exchanged views on regional developments”.



Rajasthan: Will stage protest outside PM’s residence, if required, says CM Gehlot

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Saturday said that the party would approach President Ram Nath Kovind to press for an Assembly session,if needed, reported ANI. Addressing Congress Legislative Party (CLP) meeting at Fairmont Hotel in Jaipur, Gehlot said, “we will go Rashtrapati Bhawan to meet the President and if required, we will stage a protest outside the prime minister’s residence. Meanwhile, the Congress workers today staged demonstrations across Rajasthan against what it called a BJP “conspiracy to topple” its government. Congress workers gathered in large numbers in Jaipur and district headquarters and raised slogans against BJP and demanded that the governor convene a session of the Assembly. The Congress government is pushing for an Assembly session so that Gehlot can prove his majority, following a revolt by Sachin Pilot and 18 other MLAs. During a cabinet meeting on late Friday, leaders discussed six points raised by Governor Kalraj Mishra on Gehlot’s demand for an Assembly session to prove his government’s majority. Though the Pilot camp has at least 19 MLAs, Gehlot claims he still has a majority in the 200-member House.


Rajasthan Headed For Constitutional Crisis: BJP After Meeting Governor

: Ashok Gehlot government in Rajasthan, which has demanded an Assembly session on Monday to prove its majority amid open revolt by sacked Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot, is heading for a "constitutional crisis", BJP claimed on Saturday evening, minutes after a 12-member delegation met Governor Kalraj Mishra, ostensibly to discuss the coronavirus crisis in the state.Rajasthan BJP chief Satish Poonia and other BJP leaders hit out at Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and the Congress, accusing them of theatrics and preventing the Governor from carrying out his constitutional duty.


Rajasthan HC relief for Pilot camp, Congress cites Supreme Court ruling to raise questions

In further relief to the rebel Congress camp of former Rajasthan Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot, the Rajasthan High Court directed Friday that status quo as of July 14 be maintained on notices sent by Assembly Speaker CP Joshi to the 19 MLAs led by Pilot.The direction effectively means that rebel MLAs will not be required to submit their reply to the Speaker and no action can be taken against them till the hearing resumes in the Supreme Court on July 27.“It means that the respondents need not file their reply before the Speaker, and possibly, the Speaker can’t proceed further. So, the position on (July) 14th is maintained till any order is passed by the Supreme Court,” said lawyer Prateek Kasliwal, who is representing Speaker Joshi.The bench also accepted the request by the 19 rebel MLAs to make the Centre a party to the case.In New Delhi, Congress leader Kapil Sibal, who is a senior advocate, questioned the Rajasthan High Court’s order saying it has “no jurisdiction to pass such an order.”He told reporters: “A very sad situation that has arisen… is that Constitution Bench judgments are not being followed by High Courts. We know for a fact that there is a five-judge decision of the Supreme Court of India which says that if a disqualification petition is filed, the Speaker will decide that disqualification petition and his decision can be challenged in a court of law but prior to his decision, proceedings by the Speaker are proceedings within the House under Article 212 of the Constitution… and those proceedings cannot be interfered with.”“That is the decision in the Kihoto Hollohan case as far back as 1992. And in this particular case, in Rajasthan, there is a status quo order passed this morning saying that those proceedings will not go on in the teeth of Kihoto Hollohan,” he said.

In agreeing to hear Pilot camp’s challenge of anti-defection law, HC reopens debate considered closed


BJP MLA moves HC for disqualification of 6 BSP legislators who shifted to Congress

BJP MLA Madan Dilawar has filed a petition in Rajasthan High Court, challenging the merger of 6 BSP legislators into Congress last year, which took the party’s strength to 107 in the 200-member Assembly.In the petition, the hearing of which is scheduled to take place on Monday, one of the prayers is the disqualification of these MLAs from membership of the Assembly with effect from September 2019. “In March this year, I had submitted a written appeal to the Speaker of the Rajasthan Assembly, saying that the merger of BSP MLAs in the Congress is unconstitutional. But even after four months have passed, he didn’t hear my petition. As a result, I had to move the High Court because I had no choice left. (I am) requesting the court to declare this merger wrong and ineffective,” said Dilawar, MLA from Ramganjmandi in Kota district.


EC Orders Probe Against Maharashtra CEO for Hiring BJP Activist to Handle Its Social Media

Mumbai: Activist and former journalist Saket Gokhale took to social media to allege that Maharashtra chief electoral officer (CEO) had hired an advertising company that allegedly had a direct link with the BJP.The company called Signpost India, Gokhale claimed, belonged to Devang Dave who is the national convener of IT & social media for BJP’s youth wing.The post generated enough stir on social media and the Election Commission of India soon ordered for an inquiry into the Maharashtra CEO’s selection of Dave’s company. “Regarding tweet of Mr Gokhale @SaketGokhale, the commission has sought a detailed factual report in this matter from CEO Maharashtra with respect to the alleged locale of the incidence immediately,” ECI spokesperson, Sheyphali Sharan, wrote on Twitter.In a series of tweets, Gokhale had sought to show the direct link between Dave, BJP and the Maharashtra election office. According to screengrabs posted, Dave had been closely involved in disseminating information about the 2019 state election.Dave’s company had been hired to handle the Election Commission’s Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP). During the election, Signpost India was responsible for raising awareness about the election on the state election office’s social media pages, and through newspapers and hoardings to promote a healthy attitude among the electorate.This raises concerns since Dave has a direct link with the BJP and is in fact an office-bearer of the party’s youth wing. Dave is also the national convener of the information technology (IT) and handles the social media cell of the BJP’s youth wing.

Shocking revelation on Election Commission’s link with BJP IT cell for Maharashtra polls; poll body seeks report


Karnataka Court Issues Summons to CM Yediyurappa For Violating Election Code in Speech Last Year

Acourt in Karnataka's Gokak has issued summons to Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa in a case of alleged violation of the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) during campaigning last November ahead of a bypoll, an official said on Saturday. Yediyurappa had sought votes from a community during an election campaign of Ramesh Jarkiholi on November 23 last year.Jarkiholi had contested on a BJP ticket after he and 17 other MLAs from the Congress and JD(S) defected, leading to fall of previous coalition govt. He is now the Water Resources Minister in the year-old state BJP government since early February.While campaigning for Jarkiholi, Yediyurappa in his speech had said that the votes of the Veerashaiva Lingayat community members will be consolidated and they will not disperse here and there, the court noted.



Covid testing hits record high of 4.20 lakh samples a day

 India has ramped up its testing capacity for Covid-19 and conducted over 4.20 lakh — highest ever number of tests in a day, Union Health Ministry said Saturday, while crediting the increase in number of labs for the achievement. In January, India had only one testing lab for coronavirus which has now increased to 1,301, including private labs. Health Ministry said revised ICMR guidelines and efforts by states also helped in achieving the goal of widespread testing. Till Friday, a total of 1,58,49,068 tests for COVID-19 had been done in the country.With nearly 50,000 cases (48,916) on the second consecutive day, the total number of coronavirus infections in India crossed the 13 lakh-mark to reach 13,36,861 on Saturday. Also, 757 deaths in the last 24 hours pushed the death toll to 31,358. Currently, India has 4,56,071 active cases and 8,49,431 people have been treated and discharged. 63.54 per cent people recovered so far, the health ministry has said. Globally, 15,736,499 people have been infected and 638,577 have succumbed to the virus. As many as 8,986,470 recoveries have been reported so far.


Gujarat resists increased testing; accuses Ahmedabad Medical Association of ‘vested interests’

Ahmedabad ;Even as the daily Covid-19 bulletin by the Gujarat government on Friday said the state had tested 14,595 samples in the last 24 hours, and the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) claimed aggressive antigen testing, the former had told Gujarat High Court on Thursday that the demand for increased testing from different quarters as is prayed in various public interest litigations, “appears to be not for any public interest but for personal gain/private interest of the members” of Ahmedabad Medical Association (AMA). Facing criticism for resisting testing especially those who were asymptomatic, Gujarat government said on Friday that it was now testing in the range of 14,000 to 15,000, per day (including antigen tests) achieving a 224.53 per day testing per million and had tested in all 6,06,718 samples. Till last week, health officials, including additional director Prakash Vaghela had confirmed that the state has a capacity to conduct 8,000 RTPCR tests per day.


Madhya Pradesh CM Chouhan tests positive for coronavirus

Shivraj Singh Chouhan Saturday became the first Chief Minister to test positive for the novel coronavirus. He is likely to get admitted to Chirayu hospital in capital city Bhopal. Madhya Pradesh CM disclosed the news on Twitter. His announcement came days after Cabinet Minister Arvind Bhadoria tested positive for the disease. Bhadoria had attended a Cabinet meeting and had travelled with the CM to Lucknow to attend the funeral of Governor Lalji Tandon earlier this week.Taking to Twitter, Chouahn said: “I was showing symptoms of Covid-19. I went through the tests and the results have proven to be positive. I urge all those who came in contact with me in recent days to get themselves tested. All those close to me should go into quarantine.


Over 8,000 Maharashtra police officers tested positive, 93 died so far

As many as 8,200 police personnel in Maharashtra have so far tested positive for the coronavirus, and 93 of them have died, according to official data.


Another 43 BSF personnel posted in Punjab test positive

Chandigarh :Security personnel in Punjab continue testing positive for novel corinavirus. On Friday, 43 BSF personnel tested positive from BSF’s training centre camp at Kharkan in Hoshiarpur, taking the total number of BSF personnel testing positive for the infection to nearly 200 in the state.Out of 200, 169 of them have tested positive from Kharkan BSF camp alone. Further, at least 17 BSF personnel from Amritsar and 15 others from across the state have been diagnosed with the infection.


Muslim Congress leaders reject CM Uddhav Thackeray's suggestion for 'symbolic' qurbani on Bakrid

MUMBAI: Unhappy with state govt's "ambiguous" guidelines on Eidul Adha or Bakrid, a section of Muslim Congress leaders have rejected CM Uddhav Thackeray's suggestion for "symbolic" qurbani or sacrifice of animals. Bakrid falls on August 1 and animal sacrifice is wajib or mandatory on every Muslim who can afford it.Former minister Arif Naseem Khan is so peeved with some of the points in the guidelines issued last Friday that he has dashed off a letter to Uddhav Thackeray requesting him to call an urgent meeting of ministers, present and ex-MLAs and officers to discuss and review the guidelines."Our main objection is on two points. First, qurbani cannot be done symbolically and it is impractical for most people to buy goats online. There is no concept of symbolic sacrifice of animals in Islam and goats are bought after checking their size and health conditions which is not possible online. The government must issue fresh guidelines as present guidelines interfere in the religious affairs of Muslims," said Khan. Congress MLA Amin Patel who was part of the recent meetings with senior officials and ministers on the issue of qurbani too said that "symbolic" qurbani was unacceptable as Islam didn't allow it.  Many leaders hit out at the government for issuing "ambiguous" and "confusing" guidelines and even sought NCP chief Sharad Pawar's intervention. While regretting that Muslim leaders failed to convince the government to issue "clear" guidelines, Jamiatul Ulema leader Gulzar Azmi said that cattle should be allowed to sacrifice.


6 foreign Jamaat members, two others sentenced to one month imprisonment

As many as 6 foreign jamaat members and two from India who accompanied them were sentenced to a month-long imprisonment and are required to pay a fine by a trial court in Sehore, the neighbouring district of Bhopal, on Friday, as per the district prosecution unit in Sehore. As per an official release from the district prosecution officer Nirmala Singh Chaudhary, the convicts Khin Maung Zaw, Thnin Tharyi Khin Maung, Zawoo, Ye Lin Phyo, Thein Lni and Myoo OO are residents of Myeik, Myanmar. Mashur Rehman hails from Jharkhand and Ahmad Hussain is from Bihar.


Coimbatore: Many come forward to give plasma

COIMBATORE: After Health Minister C Vijayabaskar’s announcement that plasma trials would begin shortly in Coimbatore, a city-based blood donors coordination team said that many people are willing to donate plasma to help others improve their immunity.A coordinator of Coimbatore District Blood Donors Coordination Team A Ayoob Riyas said that they have a database of 60 people, who recovered from Covid-19 and are healthy.Meanwhile, a group of men, who tested positive after attending a religious conference at Nizamuddin Markaz in New Delhi, have also expressed their willingness to donate plasma.  Secretary of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind in Coimbatore Abdul Hakkim said, “As many as 120 people who attended Tablighi Jamaat this year have recovered from Coronavirus. Once the plasma trials begin here, we can coordinate with them and arrange for contribution of blood plasma for therapy.”


Why COVID-19 is killing US diabetes patients at alarming rates

Darrell Cager Sr., 64, had diabetes. So his youngest daughter urged him to seek care. The next day, he collapsed and died in his New Orleans home.The daughter soon learned the cause: acute respiratory distress from COVID-19. His death certificate noted diabetes as an underlying condition. Brumfield, who lives in Texas and also has type 2 diabetes, is “terrified” she could be next.“I’m thinking, Lord, this could happen to me,” she said of her father’s death in late March.She has good reason to fear. As U.S. outbreaks surge, a new government study shows that nearly 40% of people who have died with COVID-19 had diabetes.Among deaths of those under 65, half had the chronic condition. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention analyzed more than 10,000 deaths in 15 states and New York City from February to May.


Online Classes Cannot Inspire Young Minds, Says Eminent Scientist Professor CNR Rao 

Bengaluru: Eminent scientist Professor CNR Rao on Monday spoke out against introducing online classes for children in view of the COVID-19-induced close-down of schools, underlining the importance of human interface for good communication and inspiring young minds.He made no secret of his displeasure over easing of a slew of restrictions under new guidelines ''Unlock 1.0'', indicating that these steps may have come too early."I have no doubt that the eventual solution will be a vaccine (for COVID-19). I feel that (it) may be available early in 2021", Professor Rao, the Honorary President of the Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, told PTI in an interview.


Covid exodus? Rich Indians are ‘ready to splurge crores’ to escape to foreign lands

New Delhi: Wealthy Indians are increasingly looking for a potential escape to foreign countries, with Covid-19 likely playing a role in their hunt for alternative abodes. According to leading global citizenship and residency advisory firm Henley & Partners, from January 2020 to date, there has been a 111 per cent increase in the number of inquiries from Indians about investor-related visas and citizenship programmes as compared to the same period last year. Henley & Partners, which opened its first Indian office in Mumbai this month, was replying to queries from ThePrint about a new global trend that has seen many wealthy people seek foreign shores on the basis of their Covid preparedness even if it costs a pretty penny. The company caters to high-net-worth (HNW) and ultra-high-net-worth (UHNW) individuals and deals with “investment migration”, which refers to citizenship and residency programmes that countries offer to individuals in exchange for crores in investments.


Delhi: 14-Year-Old Sexually Assaulted at COVID Care Centre

New Delhi: A 14-year-old girl who was undergoing treatment at the Sardar Patel COVID Care Centre in south Delhi’s Chhatarpur was sexually assaulted by another coronavirus patient, police said .The incident took place on the night of July 15, when the girl had gone to the washroom.The 19-year-old man who sexually assaulted her was arrested along with one of his associates, the police said, adding that both have been sent to judicial custody. The associate is accused of standing guard and filming the assault on his mobile phone.


Viral Video of English Speaking Woman Vendor with a PhD Takes Social Media by Storm

NEW DELHI:A Muslim fruit and vegetable seller from Indore hogged the limelight when a video of her protest went viral on the social media.The reason for her instant fame of the woman, Raisa Ansari, was her relatively fluent English. A vegetable wonder speaking in English!What was all the more surprising about her was her claim that she holds a PhD  in Material Science from Indore's Devi Ahilya University.Protesting against the civic agency for allegedly removing the pushcart on which she was selling vegetable, the lady raised many vital issues the common man encounters in his day-today life. She was very forthright in her comments on the public policies that go against the citizens. India Tomorrow


Cipla to Launch Covid-19 Treatment Drug Ciplenza in August At Rs 68 Per Tablet

Pharmaceutical major Cipla Limited on Friday said it has received regulatory approval from Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) for the launch of Favipiravir in the country under the brand name Ciplenza to treat mild to moderate Covid-19 patients.Favipiravir is an off patent, oral antiviral drug that has been shown to hasten clinical recovery in Covid-19 patients with mild to moderate symptoms.The accelerated approval for manufacturing and marketing of the drug is aimed at meeting the urgent and unmet medical need for Covid-19 treatment options in the country through restricted emergency use.Cipla said it will commercially launch Ciplenza in the first week of August priced at Rs 68 per tablet.



US-China ties fray as Beijing's Houston consulate shuts down

A group of men has forced open a door at the Chinese consulate in the city of Houston and entered the diplomatic mission shortly after staff there vacated the building on the orders of the United States government.The closure of China's Houston consulate on Friday marks a sharp deterioration in relations between the world's two biggest economies, with China retaliating by ordering the shutdown of the US mission in the southwestern city of Chengdu.The 72-hour deadline for the Houston mission's closure ended at 4pm local time on Friday, and Chinese officials were seen loading large sacks of objects and documents onto U-Haul trucks and tossing more into Dumpster bins.They were jeered on by a small group of protesters who carried flags expressing support for US President Donald Trump.Shortly after the last of the Beijing diplomats departed, law enforcement officials cordoned off the area and men who appeared to be US officials pried open a rear door. Then, two uniformed members of the US State Department's Bureau of Diplomatic Security arrived to guard the door.


Australia Joining India, US, Japan In Indo-Pacific For Mega Navy Drill "Hugely Beneficial": US

Washington: With India considering an invitation to Australia to join the next Malabar naval exercise, a top US diplomat has said that Canberra's participation in the drill along with the other three Quad members will be hugely beneficial to reinforcing behaviours that are going to be necessary for them to defend their mutual interests.Deputy Secretary of State Steven Biegun made the comments in front of the members of the Senate Foreign Relations during a hearing on US policy regarding China.


US intelligence chief warns of foreign meddling in 2020 vote

Voters in the United States should be on high alert for foreign interference in the November 3 election, the US counterintelligence agency chief said on Friday in a rare warning that the public should screen information, check online sources and report suspicious actions.William Evanina, chief of National Counterintelligence and Security Center (NCSC), said with just more than 100 days to the election, it was "imperative" his agency share with voters some of the information about possible interference that US spies have given to campaigns and legislators.


Abu Dhabi presses allies to normalise with Israel

UAE is gradually obtaining support in its endeavours to normalise relations with Israel, with economic and security interests alleged to be behind the rapprochement.UAE has been in the process of normalising its relations with Israel for several years, and Abu Dhabi’s allies are now following their sponsor.The Southern Transitional Council (STC), Yemeni secessionist movement sponsored by UAE, has recently shown a willingness to establish relations with Israel, with which it is currently in secret talks. The same has been said for Khalifa Haftar, head of the Libyan National Army, who is seeking new support after successive setbacks against Fayez Al-Sarraj’s Turkish-backed Government of National Accord (GNA).The communication between Haftar and Tel-Aviv has been ongoing for two years, as Intelligence Online has previously reported. Palestinians close to Mohammed Dahlan, chief security adviser to Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, are also committed to normalising relations with Israel.These understandings come as Abu Dhabi has been publicising its ties with Israel in the wake of COVID-19 crisis.


Gaza blockade: Egyptian harassment meets readers

Recounting his journey with two companions to reach the Gaza Strip through Egypt’s blockade, a co-author of the book No Way to Gaza detailed the harassment inflicted by Egyptian officials on the Brazilian trio and the Palestinian residents of the city alike, Anadolu Agency reported.“This adventure nearly cost us lives. One of our colleagues had a heart attack in Cairo,” Rodrigo D. E. Campos said during the virtual book launch for the chronicle on Thursday.No Way to Gaza tells the story of a group of Brazilian filmmakers who attempted to reach the Gaza Strip via Egypt to make a documentary on the city.


Israel extends detention of Jerusalem governor

Israeli occupation authorities extended on Friday the detention of Governor of occupied Jerusalem Adnan Gheith, for seven days, his lawyer Rami Othman disclosed.Reported by Quds Net, Othman noted that the governor’s case is to be sent to the court on Thursday.Gheith was arrested from his home in Jerusalem’s neighbourhood of Silwan on Sunday, prompting demonstrations calling for his release.Since he was appointed governor of Jerusalem two years ago, Gheith has been systematically targeted by the Israeli occupation, and was arrested at least 17 times during his tenure.


Israel police arrest 55 anti-Netanyahu protesters

Israeli police arrested on Friday at dawn 55 Israelis who took part in demonstrations against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, news agencies reported.According to Israel Radio, thousands of angry Israelis took part in demonstrations staged near Netanyahu’s residence in Jerusalem, and many clashes erupted between them and police.The demonstrators chanted anti-Netanyahu slogans and raised placards calling on him to resign over his corruption cases and mismanagement of the coronavirus crisis, which negatively affected the economic situation as unemployment spiked to over 21 per cent in the country.


Muslim prayers in Hagia Sophia for first time in 86 years

Muslim prayers have been held in the iconic Hagia Sophia for the first time in 86 years after the reconversion of the Istanbul landmark into a mosque earlier this month. The Friday prayers took place two weeks after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan controversially declared the nearly 1,500-year-old monument open to Muslim worship after a top court ruled the building's conversion to a museum by modern Turkey's founding statesman in the mid-1930s was illegal. Erdogan, accompanied by cabinet minister and other top officials, joined hundreds of worshippers inside Hagia Sophia as large crowds gathered outside. Some 350,000 people took part in the traditional Friday prayers at the historic mosque in Istanbul.Before the prayers, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan recited from the Quran inside the reopened mosque, choosing verses from both the Surah Al-Fatihah and the Surah Al-Baqarah.


European Muslims hail opening of Hagia Sophia Mosque

Muslims around Europe hailed the opening of Turkey’s Hagia Sophia Mosque to worship after 86 years with Friday prayer, Anadolu Agency reported.Vehbija Secerovic, muezzin of the historic Gazi Husrev-Beg Mosque in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo, thanked Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for the decision.Speaking to Anadolu Agency in Brussels, Suleyman Murtaza said that opening Hagia Sophia for worship is a very important development for the Muslim world.“I saw Erdogan praying there. I also watched it live. It was magnificent,” he said.Belgian Muslim Dema Habib also praised the move.Speaking to Anadolu Agency in Stockholm, Iraqi-origin Karwan Mohammed Abubakir said: “I am very happy that Hagia Sophia opened as a mosque again. Praise to Allah, it has opened with the Friday prayer, we are very happy.”





Head of UK Muslim charity quits over anti-Semitic posts

LONDON: The director of the largest Muslim charity in UK, who is a sympathizer of Palestinian group Hamas, has resigned after a series of anti-Semitic Facebook posts came to light.Heshmat Khalifa, the former director and a trustee of Islamic Relief Worldwide, resigned after British newspaper The Times confronted the charity about his anti-Semitic posts. Khalifa also used social media to praise Hamas and its armed wing, Al-Qassam Brigades.Charity Commission for England and Wales has launched a preliminary investigation into Islamic Relief after comments that include the labeling of Jews as the “grandchildren of monkeys and pigs” came to light, The Times reported. Khalifa, who was born and educated in Egypt, also attacked the country’s President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi using anti-Semitic insults in more than a dozen posts in 2014 and 2015, The Times reported. Islamic Relief published a statement on Friday saying: “We reject and condemn terrorism and believe that all forms of discrimination — including anti-Semitism — are unacceptable.”The charity added that Khalifa’s Facebook posts “contravene the values and principles of Islamic Relief Worldwide,” which “sincerely regrets any offense caused.” Khalifa has expressed regret at the “language and sentiments expressed” in the posts, and said he was sorry for publishing them, The Times reported.


Tunisia: Ennahda nominates 2 candidates to head next government

Ennahda movement has presented to the President of the Republic Kais Saied, on Thursday evening, two candidates to head the coming government, namely Mohamed Khayyam Al-Turki and Mohamed Fadel Abdel Kafi.This came in a brief statement by Ennahda Spokesman Imad Al-Khamiri to Anadolu Agency on Thursday evening.Al-Turki is a businessman and former leader of the Democratic Forum for Labour and Liberties.Abdel-Kafi is the former minister of development, investment and international cooperation, between 2016 -2017, of Youssef Chahed’s government.


Somalia's parliament votes to remove PM Hassan Ali Khaire

Somalia's parliament has removed Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire by a vote of no confidence, the speaker of the house told the state news agency.Legislators voted 170-8 to remove Khaire, Mohamed Mursal Sheikh Abdirahman told the news agency, according to a Reuters news agency report on Saturday."We urge Somalia's president to appoint a new prime minister," he was quoted as saying. "The prime minister failed to establish national security forces to tighten security for the federal and state governments."Khaire, a former oil company executive, was not immediately available for comment. He had led the eastern African country since March 2017.


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 Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:54 PM)


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