*SOUTH ASIA, INDO-PAK & J&K*
Kashmir: After China’s Third Call for UNSC Meeting, India Rejects 'Interference'
New Delhi: After China initiated another discussion on Kashmir at UNSC, India on Thursday asserted that it had “met with little support” from the international community and reiterated that Beijing should “draw proper conclusions from infructuous attempts”.Earlier from New York, India’s permanent representative to UN, T.S. Tirumurti had tweeted, “Another attempt by Pakistan fails! In today’s meeting of UNSC which was closed, informal, not recorded, and without any outcome, almost all countries underlined that J&K was bilateral issue & did not deserve time and attention of Council”.He was referring to the third meeting of UNSC member states held behind closed doors in the one year since India revoked Jammu and Kashmir’s special status – all of them initiated by China. The first one was held on Aug.16, 2019, followed by the second meeting on January 15 this year. All three were held in the category of “any other business” meeting, with no outcome or minutes taken.PTI reported, citing sources, that the US took the lead in Wednesday’s meeting in New York, and many other council members also joined and made it clear that the Kashmir issue was not a matter for the UN body to discuss and is a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan. In a statement issued in New Delhi on Thursday, Ministry of External Affairs stated that it had noted that “China initiated a discussion in UNSC on issues pertaining to Jammu & Kashmir”. India had on Wednesday criticised China for describing the reorganisation of Jammu and Kashmir in 2019 as “illegal and invalid“, and advised Beijing not to comment on the internal affairs of other nations.In New York on Wednesday, the spokesperson of China’s Permanent Mission to United Nations said on the Security Council’s discussion on Kashmir that Chinese ambassador to UN Zhang Jun pointed out that “India and Pakistan are both China’s friendly neighbours and big developing countries at a critical stage of development”.
J&K: UN Security Council asked India, Pakistan to solve Kashmir dispute bilaterally, says envoy
UNSC Calls Closed-Door Meet on Kashmir As Pakistan Asks OIC to be Proactive
UN experts call for urgent action on “alarming” human rights situation in Jammu and Kashmir
Geneva: As India marks one year of abrogation of Article 370, UN Human Rights Special Rapporteurs have called on the international community to take urgent action against the “alarming human rights situation in the Valley.”“Urgent action is needed,” said the experts, urging Indian human rights defenders to respond to the rising press gag and rights violation in the territory. It stated in its latest session that if India fails to take any “genuine and immediate steps to resolve the situation,” then the international community should step up.” The Special Rapporteurs have also demanded an investigation into the “historic and recent cases of human rights violations” so that any such future events can be prevented.The statement has also noted that since the Indian Parliament revoked the constitutionally mandated status of the state of Jammu and Kashmir on 5 August 2019, the human rights situation in Jammu and Kashmir has been in “free fall,” highlighting that the conditions have become concerning “particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic.”In its latest meet, UN experts have accused India of blocking access to information and peaceful protests, and of subsequently launching “arbitrary detention, torture and ill-treatment of activists.”
India to China: Proposal to step back further is untenable, not acceptable
FIFTH round of Corps Commander-level military talks failed to break the deadlock in the 14-week border crisis in eastern Ladakh after India rejected Chinese demands for further disengagement on LAC as “untenable”, official sources said. Two days after the talks were held, the high-powered China Study Group (CSG) reviewed the Chinese proposal Tuesday and asked the Army to convey that the proposal of “mutual and equal” disengagement at Pangong was “not acceptable” to India. The message was delivered by the Army on a dedicated military hotline in Ladakh, sources said. The next step will be decided after a formal Chinese response is received and deliberations are held within the government, they said. The Army, meanwhile, had been asked to continue preparations for a long haul on the LAC, including winter deployment for nearly 35,000 additional troops.
India Rebuffs China, Refuses To Disengage Further Along Pangong Tso
LAC standoff | Defence Ministry takes down report on Chinese transgressions beginning early May
The Ministry of Defence (MoD) took down a document uploaded on its website that admitted Chinese transgressions into Indian territory in Eastern Ladakh beginning early May.The report said the present situation arising from “unilateral aggression” by China continues to be sensitive, requiring close monitoring and prompt action based on the evolving situation, and the present stand-off “is likely to be prolonged.” “Chinese aggression has been increasing along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) and more particularly in Galwan valley since May 5. The Chinese side transgressed in the areas of Kurang Nala, Gogra and north bank of Pangong Tso on May 17-18,” the MoD said in the report on June activities. The Ministry spokesperson was not available for comment.Ground-level interactions between the armed forces of both sides were held to defuse the situation, the report said, referring to the Corps Commanders flag meeting on June 6. “However, a violent face-off incident took place between the two sides on June 15, resulting in casualties of both sides.” Subsequently, the second Corps Commander-level meeting took place on June 22 to discuss modalities of the de-escalation process.
Removing documents won't change facts: Congress attacks Centre for removing Chinese intrusion report from website
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the central government has come under a volley of attack by the opposition after the Ministry of Defence removed a report on Chinese intrusion in the Ladakh region from its website. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who had earlier quoted the reports on MoD documents and accused PM Modi of lying, once again took to social media to question the ministry's decision to remove the documents from the public domain.Rahul Gandhi claimed that PM Modi did not have the courage to even 'name' Chinese."Forget standing up to China, India’s PM lacks the courage even to name them. Denying China is in our territory and removing documents from websites won’t change the facts," Rahul Gandhi said.
2 US legislators tell India that close relations between Delhi, Washington needed to counter China
2 American lawmakers have written to India’s External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, saying that a “close partnership” between New Delhi and Washington assumes significance in the background of Chinese aggression. “As Prime Minister [Narendra] Modi said in February of this year, our ties ‘are no longer just another partnership’,” said the letter signed by Eliot Engel, chairperson of the United States House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee and Michael T McCaul, its ranking member. “It is a far greater and closer relationship.”The lawmakers said that this close relationship is even more important given the aggression India faces from China, which they called the Chinese government’s “consistent pattern of unlawful and belligerent territorial aggression across the Indo-Pacific”.
Annuling of Kashmir's special status does not contribute to peace: Turkey
The annulment of the Article of the Indian Constitution which accords special status to Jammu-Kashmir does not contribute to peace and stability in the region, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman said on the occasion of the first anniversary of India’s decision of revoking the 7-decade-long semi-autonomous status of the Himalayan region. "It is observed that the practices in Jammu-Kashmir, after a year since the annulment of the Article of the Indian Constitution which accords special status to Jammu-Kashmir, have further complicated the situation in Kashmir and have not contributed to the peace and stability in the region," said Hami Aksoy in a statement.Aksoy further reiterated Turkey's call for dialogue to resolve the issue under the UN charters and resolutions.
One year of Aug 5: J&K L-G exits after talk of polls and 4G
IN A SUDDEN development, Gireesh Chandra Murmu, who took oath as the first Lieutenant Governor of Jammu & Kashmir on Oct.31, 2019, resigned Wednesday. Exactly a year ago, on August 5, 2019, Centre had abrogated the special status of erstwhile state, and decided to bifurcate it into two Union Territories. Just a week ago, Election Commission had taken exception to LG Murmu’s recent comments to the media on the timing of Assembly elections in Jammu & Kashmir. In a strongly-worded statement, the EC said all decisions on the conduct and timing of elections are its “sole remit”. In an interview to The Indian Express, Murmu had emphasised that President’s Rule in J&K cannot be in place indefinitely and that “elections would not be very far.”Sources in Srinagar also said differences between LG and Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam had also resulted in some administrative problems. LG had started calling meetings and files to his office, and sending notes to Chief Secretary for necessary action.Sources close to LG said he had been concerned with “lack of accountability among civil servants and bringing public servants under pressure to get work done.” They also said that he had also been pushing bureaucrats to increase “public interface and his idea was to have mass participation in developmental programmes.”
J&K parties find new L-G Manoj Sinha ‘too saffron’ as he is set to assume charge
Srinagar: National Conference (NC) and PDP have expressed both scepticism and displeasure at the appointment of Manoj Sinha as the new lieutenant governor of Jammu and Kashmir in place of G.C. Murmu. While NC vice-president and former J&K chief minister Omar Abdullah took to Twitter to point out the “unceremonious” exit of Murmu, PDP spokesperson Firdous Tak reminded his followers of a controversial statement Sinha had made, that those pointing fingers at a BJP worker will not be safe.Officials in the J&K administration, meanwhile, told ThePrint appointment of the senior BJP leader as the L-G is an attempt to restore political normalcy in the newly-formed union territory.Mainstream politicians in the Valley are, however, skeptical about Sinha’s appointment and his objectives. “What kind of political outreach is this when our leaders continue to be under house arrest?” NC spokesperson Imran Dar asked. “Only yesterday (5 August), a meeting called by NC president Dr Farooq Abdullah was scuttled by sealing the road leading to his residence, while BJP workers were celebrating.”
504 Separatists Signed 'Good Behaviour Bond' Before Release From Detention: J-K Police Chief
As many as 504 separatist leaders, who had been detained following the abrogation of Article 370 provisions a year ago, were released after they signed bond of "good behaviour", Jammu and Kashmir Police chief Dilbag Singh said on Thursday.Singh also said out of the 350 separatist leaders and stone pelters who had been sent to jails in other states, only 50-60 continued to remain behind bars and the rest were released."A total of 504 separatist leaders belonging to Hurriyat Conference and Jamaat-e-Islami (JK) and others have been released so far after they signed good behaviour bond," he told PTI here.Those who sign "good behaviour bond" are bound to maintain peace and not indulge in any violent or separatist activities after being released from jails or home detention.DGP said after the abrogation of Article 370 provisions on August 5, 2019, a total of 5,500 youths were detained by security forces and all of them were let off after three-four days following counselling and taking assurance from their parents that they would not indulge in any violent acts like stone pelting in future.However, he said, cases were against 1,200 other youths for indulging in violent acts.Singh said about 144 boys, who were under 18 years old, were also detained last year for indulging in violence and currently just 17 of them are in remand homes set up under the Juvenile Justice Act.
Sarpanch shot dead by militants in south Kashmir, second attack in 40 hours
A sarpanch was shot dead by suspected militants outside his residence at Vessuin south Kashmir’s Qazigund on Thursday morning. This is the second militant attack on a sarpanch within 40 hours in Qazigund.According to sources, the militants opened fire at Sajad Ahmad Khanday from a close range. 45-year-old was immediately rushed to hospital where he was declared dead.“Yes, he was brought dead to hospital,” Medical Superintendent Government Medical College Anantnag Dr Mohammad Iqbal confirmed: Indian Express.
India rejects Pakistan’s criticism of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya
New Delhi on Thursday rejected Islamabad’s condemnation of the construction of the Ram Mandir at Ayodhya, with the ministry of external affairs (MEA) saying Pakistan should not interfere in India’s internal affairs and refrain from “communal incitement”.MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said: “We have seen the press statement by Islamic Republic of Pakistan on a matter internal to India. It should desist from interfering in India’s affairs and refrain from communal incitement.”
*INDIA- ISLAMOPHOBIA, HUMAN RIGHTS & OTHERS*
Clamour rises for Kashi Vishwanath, Mathura temples after Ram temple brick-laying ceremony
After brick laying ceremony for Ram Temple in Ayodhya, there seemed to a renewed clamour among the saints, especially those associated with VHP for 'liberating' the Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Varanasi and the Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi in Mathura.The seers have also decided to celebrate August five as the 'freedom day for Lord Ram' every year so that the future generations do not forget the sacrifices made by Hindus for Ram Temple.All India Akhara Parishad (AIAP), an apex body of the seers in the country, on Thursday said that the fight for the Ram Temple had now ended and now it was the turn of Kashi and Mathura. "We have got Ram Temple.....now we will liberate the Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Varanasi and Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi in Mathura," AIAP president Mahant Narendra Giri said."Kashi and Mathura are also blots for the Hindus....they must also be freed," he said. Mahant appealed to the seers and saints to launch a "peaceful movement" to 'free' Kashi and Mathura.Senior BJP leader Vinay Katiyar had also called for 'liberating' Kashi and Mathura.According to the sources, the chief priest, who had performed the rituals for the Ram Temple 'bhoomi pujan' in Ayodhya on Wednesday, wanted to ask Prime Minister Narendra Modi to 'liberate' Kashi and Mathura but was stopped by the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Trust, which was overseeing Temple construction work.The chief priest Gangadhar Pathak said that he wanted the prime minister to promise 'liberation' of twin temples as 'dakshina' (a gift in cash or kind or promise given to the priests by the person for whom he performs the puja).
After Ram Temple 'Shilanyas', Now Krishna Janmabhoomi Trust Set Up In Mathura
MATHURA:Hindutva 'brigade' does not seem to allow peace prevail in the country.After Prime Minister Narendra Modi conducting 'bhoomi pujan' or 'shilanyas' for Ram Temple construction in Ayodhya, the Hindutva brigade has now set up Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi Nirman Nyas in Mathura with 80 saints from 14 states as part of it. If Central Government and Uttar Pradesh government don't initiate strong steps, it might lead to nationwide communal tension again.Acharya Devmurari Bapu, who heads the trust, said, "We got the Nyas registered on July 23 on the occasion of 'Haryali Teej' and there are 11 saints from Vrindavan who are part of the trust."Acharya further said that a signature campaign will soon be launched to connect other saints and seers for the 'liberation' of the Krishna Janmabhoomi.India Tomorrow
‘Control of state power by Hindus absolutely essential’: BJP MP Tejasvi Surya wades into controversy again
Bengaluru :BJP MP from Bangalore South Tejavi Surya on Wednesday triggered a fresh controversy after he tweeted that the “control of state power by Hindus is absolutely essential for sustenance of Dharma”. His tweet came even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi performed the bhoomi pujan of the Ram temple in Ayodhya.“Dear Hindus, Most important lesson is that control of State power by Hindus is absolutely essential for sustenance of Dharma. When we didn’t control State, we lost our temple. When we regained, we rebuilt. The 282 in 2014 & 303 in 2019 to Sri @narendramodi made today possible!” the 29-year-old posted on Twitter.
Muslim Community Leaders Criticise PM Modi Over Taking Part In Ram Temple 'Shilanyas'
NEW DELHI:Senior Muslim community leaders, while criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi for performing the ‘bhoomipuan’or ‘shilanyas’ (foundation laying) ceremony for the Ram Temple in Ayodhya on Wednesday, have asserted that “Babri Masjid was a mosque and will always remain a mosque”.In a joint statement, they also appealed Muslims “to remain steadfast on the path of patience, fortitude and wisdom that it has treaded in the past”. The community leaders noted that the Muslim community respected the Supreme Court’s judgement. “But the tragedy is that while the apex court conceded that all the evidences and proof are in favour of the Masjid but it ruled in favour of the Mandir”.“This injustice was not only felt by the justice-loving people and organizations all over the world and in our own country but it was also severely criticized”, the Muslim leaders pointed out. “We, too, express our disagreement with this judgment. This verdict is a festering wound for the community and the nation”, they pointed out. Signatories to the statement are: General Secretary of All India Muslim Personal Law Board Maulana Wali Rahmani, President of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind Syed Sadatullah Hussaini, Maulana Tauqeer Raza, President of All India Muslim Majlis Mushawarat Navaid Hamid, Dr Mufti Muhammad Mukarram, Dr. Zafarul Islam Khan, former Chairman, Delhi Minorities Commission, Dr. Muhammad Manzoor Alam, General Secretary of All India Milli Council, Dr. Qasim Rasool Ilyas, Maulana Khaleelur Rahman Sajjad Nomani, Maulana Jalal Haider, President of All India Shia Council, Mufti Abdul Razzaq, President of Jamiat Ulema Delhi, Maulana Salman Hussaini Nadvi, PFI Chairman Abdus Salam, SDPI President M K Faiz, Dr. Tasleem Rahmani, Maulana Peer Sayyed Tanveer Ahmed Hashmi, Sajjada Nashin Khanqah Hasmiya, Bijapur, and Maulana Shabbir Ahmed Nadvi, Nazim, Jamiat us Swalehat, Bengaluru. India Tomorrow
Sikh forum opposes Ram temple in Ayodhya
At a time when the nation seems to be drunk on the opium of Hindutva as manifest in the media frenzy over the bhoomi pujan in Ayodhya, the beleaguered Muslim community has got much needed support from the Sikh Vichar Manch, a Chandigarh-based body of intellectuals, historians, authors, academics and journalists. They said, "The building of the Ram temple represents a saga of ‘triumphant revivalism’ which began with the government aiding the construction of the Somnath temple in the 1950s, proclaiming to initiate a Ram Rajya. It presents a parallel to Pakistan’s story that turned the country into an Islamic Republic with the promise of establishing Medina, the city of the Prophet."The statement signed among others by the noted author Ajaypal Singh Brar, Prof Manjit Singh, Dalit leader Raijwinder Singh Rahi and senior journalist Jaspal Singh Sidhu termed today’s pooja in Ayodhya as the beginning of Hindu Rashtra. "With the Hindutva forces pursuing the upper caste Brahmanic ideology for over a century aiming to reshape India into a Hindu nation, the democratic, secular Indian republic today stands transformed into a Hindu Rashtra as Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid down a 40-kg silver brick at the foundation, marking the beginning of the Ram temple."The noted historian Prof Gurdarshan S. Dhillon, who authored India Commits Suicide in the wake of Operation Bluestar, says, "The SC has betrayed the minorities with its verdict on the Babri Masjid issue. frontline.thehindu.
Don’t rake up religious issues for political gains, says former Union home secretary Madhav Godbole
Pune:Engaging in religious issues to gain public attention will distract India’s capability and development process, said city-based bureaucrat and former Union home secretary Madhav Godbole, after the foundation stone laying ceremony of Ram Temple at Ayodhya.Godbole resigned as the Union home secretary after Babri Masjid was demolished in 1992, subsequently taking voluntary retirement. He held several high positions in the bureaucracy and the government.The city-based bureaucrat has penned a book ‘The Babri Masjid-Ram Mandir Dilemma: An Acid Test for India’s Constitution.’“I hope this is not the beginning of a new chapter. BJP has been saying that this is just the beginning and next would be Mathura and Kashi,” said Godbole.“Reopening religious issues affect and divides the society at large. Politicians rake up religious issues for political gains,” he said.
Modi Founds Temple on Mosque’s Ruins, in Triumphal Moment for Hindu Base: New York Times
NEW DELHI: In a moment of triumph that India’s Hindu nationalists had worked toward for years, PM Narendra Modi on Wednesday set the ceremonial cornerstone for a new Hindu temple at the site of a destroyed mosque in Ayodhya. Hindus and Muslims have clashed over the Ayodhya site for decades, setting off waves of sectarian violence that has killed thousands. As Modi sat cross-legged and chanted mantras in front of a Hindu priest on Wednesday, part of the elaborate groundbreaking ceremony for the temple, it was the fulfillment of a promise to his Hindu political base and an unmistakable milestone in his efforts to shift India’s secular foundations toward a more overtly Hindu identity.Millions of Indians watched the ceremony on television or on social media. With the TV cameras rolling, Modi took center stage. He performed Hindu rituals, such as offering holy water and putting a red mark on his forehead, alongside some of India’s most avowed Hindu nationalists. They included Yogi Adityanath, the firebrand Hindu monk turned chief minister of Uttar Pradesh State, and Mohan Bhagwat, the leader of RSS, a Hindu supremacist group, whose members helped tear down the mosque that used to stand in Ayodhya.“The wait of centuries is coming to an end,” Modi proclaimed.In that environment, for many Indian Hindus, Modi’s Ayodhya ceremony was a captivating distraction. It symbolized Mr.Modi’s “total domination over India,” said Arati Jerath, a political commentator.The intent, Ms. Jerath said, is for Modi to show that he and his party are “building a Hindu nation and that India is a Hindu-majority country, not the Nehruvian secular India that we have known for the last 70 years.”All week, government officials have been prepping the site. Aug. 5, coincides with the anniversary of Modi’s move on Kashmir, another political gift to Hindu nationalists. Modi’s participation in Ayodhya is seen in this light, as another decisive step toward an India that officially favors its Hindu majority — about 80 percent of the country is Hindu, 14 percent Muslim. India’s Muslim community has mostly stayed quiet about Ayodhya, accepting defeat.
Hindu Temple Ad Runs in New York’s Times Square Despite Opposition
NEW YORK — A large digital billboard in Times Square is displaying images of a Hindu deity and a temple being built on disputed ground in India, despite calls from a coalition of advocacy organisations — including Muslim, human rights, anti-fascist and secular groups — asking advertisers not to show the images. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi participated in the groundbreaking for the Hindu temple on Wednesday in the Indian city of Ayodhya. Modi supporters planned to gather in New York City’s Times Square throughout the day to mark the occasion.Around a dozen people stood in front of the billboard on Wednesday morning, snapping selfies when the bright yellow image of the multi-level, arched temple along with an image of the Hindu deity Ram and the Indian flag came across the screen.The billboard wraps around the corner of 47th Street and Seventh Avenue and the website of the Times Square Alliance says it is owned by Clear Channel, which did not immediately return a request for comment.
Bengal: Sporadic Clashes Over Ram Temple Celebrations Amidst Lockdown
Kolkata: There were sporadic clashes between the police and saffron activists across West Bengal on Wednesday for defying the total lockdown and holding celebrations for the groundbreaking ceremony of Ayodhya Ram Temple. Normal life was completely crippled in the state due to the lockdown, the fourth in a fortnight.According to the police, more than 3400 people were arrested from various parts of the state, including 850 from the city, for violating the lockdown “irrespective of their reasons”.Clashes were reported from Kharagpur in West Midnapore district, Narayanpur in North 24 Parganas, Coochbehar and Alipurduar towns in north Bengal, among others.At Kharagpur, a procession by BJP workers to mark the day was stopped by the police leading to a scuffle.PTI
Communal clashes over Ram temple Bhoomi pujan celebration in Assam; curfew imposed in Sonitpur
Guwahati: Several people were injured after a clash between two communities in Assam's Sonitpur district on Wednesday after a bike rally was organised by Bajrang Dal activists to celebrate ‘Bhoomi Pujan’ ceremony for Ram Temple in Uttar Pradesh’s Ayodhya. To maintain law and order situation, the district administration imposed curfew in the area. Indefinite curfew was also imposed in areas falling under the jurisdiction of Thelamara and Dhekiajuli police stations. The violence happened when a group of mean riding bikes were headed towards a Lord Shiva temple in Bhora Singori in the Thelamara police station area. The bikers were allegedly playing loud music and chanting slogans. When the locals objected to the rally being held at the time of coronavirus pandemic it resulted in arguments between the bikers and the people, which eventually turned ugly and resulted in clashes."Locals objected to the group playing loud music in their area. They also asked why the rally was organised when the people were fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. This led to arguments, which eventually turned ugly and a clash started," a senior official said.Sonitpur district's Deputy Commissioner Manvendra Pratap Singh who arrived at the spot to control the situation was attacked by the two groups.
Hindutva divides, Hinduism represents India’s composite culture: Congress veteran Tarun Gogoi
Congress veteran and three-time former Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said Hindutva divides people but Hinduism represents India’s composite culture.“Hindutva is antithesis to Bhagaban Rama’s philosophy of love, justice and truth. Hindutva divides people whereas Hinduism represents India’s composite culture by embracing all irrespective of caste, creed etc. Let the bitterness between the two groups of Babri Masjid and Rama temple conflict be buried and a new beginning commence to build a vibrant, modern and progressive India…” Gogoi said on Thursday.He said the Ayodhya ritual would be remembered as a day of great national importance as it brought an end to a bitter conflict between two parties belonging to two different religions.
Congress always followed soft Hindutva, stayed mum when Babri was razed: Pinarayi
There is hardly anything surprising about Priyanka Gandhi’s statement on Ayodhya, said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. Responding to questions at his evening briefing, Pinarayi said the Congress has always followed a soft Hindutva line.This is the first official response from the Kerala CPM on the Ayodhya issue. He said it was the Congress that allowed kar seva in Ayodhya and remained mute spectator when Babri Masjid was demolished. At the time, IUML too stood with Congress, he said.
Legitimisation of Babri destruction… official status to one religion: Left on Ram temple ceremony
As Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone for the Ram temple in Ayodhya, CPM said that the event provided retrospective legitimisation for the destruction of the Babri Masjid. CPI, on the other hand, hit out at the Prime Minister for drawing a parallel between the freedom struggle and Ram mandir movement, arguing that the PM’s remarks and his presence as the head of the government at the bhoomi pujan event marked a “dark day for democracy and secularism in India”.“The bhoomi pujan provided retrospective legitimisation for the destruction of the Babri Masjid. The Supreme verdict described this as an ‘egregious violation of law’ and called for punishment of those who committed this act. The construction has begun before any such punishment. The function is a naked exploitation of people’s religious sentiments for partisan, political purposes and brazenly violates the letter and spirit of the Indian Constitution,” CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury said.
‘Temple will be demolished to build mosque’: All India Imam Association leader
New Delhi: A day after the foundation stone for a Ram temple was laid in Ayodhya, the president of All India Imam Association made a provocative statement on Thursday.Sajid Rashidi suggested that a mosque will be built after demolishing the temple, while asserting that the Babri Masjid was not built after demolishing a temple at the disputed site.“Islam says a mosque will always be a mosque. It can't be broken to build something else. We believe it was, and always will be a mosque. Mosque wasn't built after demolishing temple but now maybe temple will be demolished to build a mosque,” Sajid Rashidi was quoted as saying.
Hyderabad Secretariat mosques: Jamaat-e-Islami Hind's state Prez calls ministers
Hyderabad: Demolition of 2 mosques in secretariat premises was a grave mistake by State Government hence it should rectify the mistake by reconstructing them on the same place, said state president of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) Hamid Mohammed Khan. He demanded that the government either reconstruct the mosque on the same place or hand over the same land to the Waqf board and the Waqf board reconstruct them on the same place under its supervision.Mr Hamid Mohammed Khan spoke to state minister t Harish Rao, K Tarak Rama Rao and home minister Mohammed Mahmood Ali on telephone and apprised them of the anger prevailing among Muslims over demolition of two mosque in secretariat premises and grave consequences of the move.He demanded that the government either reconstruct the mosque on the same place or hand over the same land to the Waqf board and the Waqf board reconstruct them on the same place under its supervision.
Foreign Tablighi Jamaat members are free to return, Centre tells Supreme Court
Centre told the Supreme Court that foreign Tablighi Jamaat members are free to return to their countries regardless of their pending trial, provided they apologise for participating in a religious congregation in the National Capital during lockdown.Ten of a total 34 foreigners who approached the apex court had not opted for plea bargaining.A Bench led by Justice A.M. Khanwilkar on Thursday transferred the cases of all the 10 petitioners facing trial to a court at Saket in southeast Delhi. The court ordered their trial to be completed expeditiously within eight weeks.Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said look-out notices issued against the foreigners who approached the apex court have been withdrawn.“The Solicitor General has, in all fairness, submitted that if the petitioners concerned tender apology, as envisaged by the Madras High Court, they can be permitted to leave India despite the pendency of the criminal case but subject to such orders that may be passed by the concerned trial court,” the court order said.
Withdrawn look out notices against foreigners in Tablighi case, Centre tells SC
Jamia violence: Delhi Police oppose setting up of SIT in High Court
Delhi Police has opposed the setting up of a Special Investigation Team to look into the violence at Jamia Millia Islamia after an anti-CAA protest in Dec, PTI reported. The police voiced its opposition before the Delhi High Court, which was hearing several pleas related to the violence.Additional Solicitor General Aman Lekhi, appearing for the Delhi Police, told the court that setting up an SIT would amount to “supplanting the law”. The police also objected to setting up a Commission of Inquiry or a fact-finding committee.The Delhi High Court, then, listed the matter for hearing on August 14.
Northeast Delhi riots: Mob set victim on fire ‘to check if he was really dead’
Delhi Police told a Delhi court that a 22-year-old man, killed by a mob during the Northeast Delhi riots, was first assaulted after establishing his Muslim identity, and after he fell unconscious, the mob set him on fire to check if he had “actually really died or was just trying to feign unconsciousness”. However, when the victim, Shahbaz, started moving, rioters “put wood pieces on him, poured some petrol and burnt him alive”, police told the court. These details surrounding Shahbaz’s death were submitted by police in court during the bail hearing of Rahul Sharma (24), an accused in the murder. Police have so far only found a piece of skull and some pelvic bones, which Shahbaz’s family claim belong to him. Police told the court only a DNA test can establish his identity. Rahul’s bail was dismissed by Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Yadav Wednesday. Police have so far arrested five persons in the case.
Chhattisgarh False FIR Case: NHRC Awards Compensation to Nandini Sundar, Others
New Delhi: In a case concerning the registration of a FIR against Nandini Sundar, Archana Prasad, Sanjay Parate and three others, NHRC has awarded monetary compensation for suffering “great mental pain and agony as a result of false FIRs against them by the police.”In its order dated March 13, which was received by the complainant PUCL only last month, the commission has directed the Chhattisgarh state government to pay Rs 1 lakh to each of them. “During the course of [the] investigation, it was found that there is no case made out against these 6 persons and, therefore, their names were deleted from FIR in which their names were initially included,” read the order.“In our considered opinion, these persons would have certainly suffered a great mental pain and agony as a result of the registration of false FIRs against them by the police, which is a violation of their human rights,” added the order while directing the state government, through the chief secretary, to pay the compensation within a period of six weeks.
SC notice to Centre, NHRC on Abhishek Singhvi’s custodial violence plea
The Supreme Court has issued notice to the Centre and the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on a plea seeking measures to prevent custodial violence. A bench of Justices U U Lalit and Vineet Saran issued the notice in the application filed by senior advocate Abhishek Singhvi. Singhvi has sought directions “on account of recent reported cases of custodial deaths and transgressions by the police”.His plea said the government must be asked to ratify the 1987 UN Convention against Torture and incorporate its provisions into Indian law.
Rajasthan HC orders single bench to deliver verdict on plea against merger of BSP MLAs with Congress
Rajasthan High Court on Thursday dismissed a petition filed by the Bahujan Samaj Party and Bharatiya Janata Party leader Madan Dilawar, seeking an immediate stay on the merger of six former BSP MLAs with the Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government amid the political turmoil, the Hindustan Times reported. The court has directed a single bench of the High Court to settle the matter by August 11.The court’s order came ahead of the crucial Rajasthan Assembly session on August 14, where the chief minister will seek a confidence vote. The Gehlot camp has been claiming the support of 102 MLAs, including the Independents, in 200-member Assembly. Without BSP MLAs, the numbers will drop to 96. BJP has 72 MLAs. Gehlot is hoping that the Congress MLAs supporting the ousted Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot, who were camping in BJP-ruled Haryana, would return to the party fold when the Assembly session begins.Prateek Kasliwal, counsel for Speaker CP Joshi, told the court that the petition filed by Dilawar and BSP is not maintainable.
Palghar lynching: SC asks Maharashtra government to produce chargesheets, status report on inquiry
The Supreme Court on Thursday asked the Maharashtra government to produce chargesheets filed so far in the Palghar lynching case within three weeks, PTI reported.On April 16, three Mumbai residents, who were on their way to Silvassa, were lynched by local residents in Gadakchinchale village of Palghar district on the suspicion that they were thieves. A large mob of villagers had surrounded the car of the three men and started attacking them with sticks and iron rods, leading to their deaths. 2 of the victims were sadhus from Mumbai’s Kandivali suburb, and the third was their driver. Over 35 police constables and personnel of other ranks were transferred after the incident caused an uproar.
Sadia Dehlvi, master storyteller who chronicled capital, dies at 62
Of all the roles that 62-year-old Sadia Dehlvi played in her life, the one she mastered was that of a storyteller. From her childhood memories, she dug out stories of “nihari Sundays” at home, the jinns that inhabited Shama Kothi where the Dehlvis lived, and the family’s contribution to society in the form of the iconic Urdu and Hindi magazines called Shama and Sushma.On Wednesday night, Dehlvi — author, activist and food connoisseur — passed away after a long battle with cancer.
700 Tonnes of Ammonium Nitrate Stored in Chennai Safe, to be E-auctioned: Customs after Beirut Blast
Customs authorities on Thursday sought to allay fears over safety regarding the storage of nearly 700 tonnes of ammonium nitrate at a container freight station near Chennai.The storage became a cause for serious concern in the backdrop of the explosion of the chemical in the Lebanese capital city of Beirut on Tuesday, which killed 135 people and injured around 4,000. The chemical worth Rs 1.80 crore was seized from a Tamil Nadu-based importer in 2015 who had allegedly declared it as fertiliser grade although it was an explosive grade, a Customs official said.But the consignment, imported from South Korea, was safe and an e-auction process was on to clear it, he said.
As it prepares for Oxford vaccine trials, Serum Institute inks deal for another Covid-19 shot
Even as it prepares to conduct late stage human trials on the Oxford-AstaZeneca vaccine candidate — branded ‘Covishield’ in India — Pune-headquartered Serum Institute of India (SII) has entered into a supply and licence agreement with American vaccine developer Novavax Inc.According to a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) by the Maryland-headquartered firm late on Wednesday, the two companies entered into an agreement on July 30 for the “development, co-formulation, filling and finishing, registration and commercialisation” of its Covid-19 vaccine candidate, NVX-CoV2373.Novavax reported on Tuesday that its candidate had “elicited robust antibody responses” during early stage human trials conducted on 50 volunteers.
School In Karnataka Slapped With Sedition Charges, Now Offers 244-Bed Covid Care Centre
BENGALURU:Bidar, a small town in North Karnataka was in the eye of a storm and occupied national headlines during February this year when a school, Shaheen, from the town was slapped with sedition charges.At the peak of anti-CAA protests, the school had staged a play allegedly involving anti-Modi slur. The conduct of the district police and the rigorous manner in which they conducted probe involving school children of the age 5-9 years, came under sharp criticism by the child rights groups and civil society, as they claimed that the probe violated the Juvenile Justice Act.Guardian Minister of Bidar in Yeddyurappa government, Mr Prbahu Chavan and district M.P Bhagvant Khuba, both belonging to the BJP, demanded revocation of school’s permission and strict action against the school management. A schoolteacher and a single mother of a nine-year-old student, who is a housemaid, were put behind the bars, leaving child lonely at home. The same school now provides one of the biggest non-government COVID-19 care centre in the town working in tandem with the district administration.India Tomorrow Last month, the school converted its newly constructed building spread across 4 acres of land at the outskirts of the city into a 244-bed temporary COVID-19 care centre, providing basic amenities for the initial treatment of mild or asymptomatic COVID-19 patients.
Over 4,000 cases, 40 deaths in last 24 hours: Another UP minister tests positive
One more minister of Uttar Pradesh Cabinet has tested positive for novel coronavirus. Law Minister Brajesh Pathak on Wednesday tweeted that he has tested positive after he showed symptoms of Covid-19. Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh recorded a total of 4,154 fresh coronavirus cases, taking the infection tally to over 1.04 lakh. The death toll increased to 1,857, with the state reporting 40 Covid-related deaths over the past 24 hours.
India crosses 2 million coronavirus cases
New Delhi: India logged more than 20 lakh coronavirus cases this evening, taking the countrywide figure to 20,06,760. The country is behind Brazil, which has more than 28 lakh cases and the US, which is leading the list of the nations hit worst by the pandemic, with close to 50 lakh cases.This morning, health ministry data showed the country has added more than 56,000 cases, taking the total to 19.65 lakh. A total of 13.28 lakh patients have recovered so far, over 40,000 have died.
Unemployment biggest worry after Covid for urban Indians: Survey
As the ongoing pandemic hits the Indian economy hard and the employment scenario worsens with large scale job losses, an Ipsos survey shows that unemployment is the second biggest worry for urban Indians, after the concern over novel coronavirus infection.According to the survey, the top issues perturbing urban Indians include COVID-19 in the first place, followed by unemployment. The other worries which follow are financial and political corruption, poverty and inequality, and healthcare.The sentiments are largely the same globally with novel coronavirus and unemployment emerging as the top two concerns.The other issues which concern people globally are poverty and social inequality, financial and political corruption, crime and violence and healthcare, said an Ipsos statement.IANS
Unlock-3: Allow hotels, gyms, weekly markets to reopen in Delhi, AAP govt again sends proposal to LG
Delhi government has again sent a proposal to Lt Governor Anil Baijal to allow hotels, gymnasium and weekly markets to reopen, saying that the COVID-19 situation has been improving in the national capital, sources said on Thursday.The government said that in accordance with the unlock guidelines issued by the Centre, it has right to take decision to allow such establishments in Delhi.In its proposal, AAP government said that the COVID-19 cases have been increasing in several states and situation is frequently deteriorating, but hotels, gyms and weekly have been allowed there.The sources said that the government also sought to know from the LG as to why Delhiites are being stopped from earning their livelihood despite the fact that the number of coronavirus cases has been decreasing in the national capital.PTI
Death toll from Beirut blast reaches 157; Lebanon gives investigating committee four days to find culprits
Lebanon's ministry of health said that the number of people killed in the blast at Beirut's port reached 157, while 5,000 others have been injured.Officials said the death toll was expected to rise as rescue operations at the port continue. The government of Lebanon has given an "investigative committee" four days to determine responsibility for the devastating explosion in Beirut port on Tuesday, Foreign Minister Charbel Wehbe told French radio."This morning, a decision was taken to create an investigative committee which in four days maximum must provide a detailed report on responsibility - how, who, what, where? There will be judicial decisions," he told Europe 1 radio. "It is serious, and we take it seriously," Wehbe said. "Those responsible for this horrible crime of negligence will be punished by a committee of judges," he added. Lebanon's leading Druze politician Walid Jumblatt called for an international investigation into the Beirut port explosion and said he had "no trust" in the government to find out the truth about it.
EU Commission ready to help Lebanon with preferential trade
The European Commission is ready to help Lebanon with preferential trade and customs backing, the head of the EU executive said after a phone call with Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab."The Commission stood ready to explore how to boost our trade relations in this challenging time, in particular in the form of further preferential trade and customs facilitation," Ursula von der Leyen said in a statement.
French President says Lebanon needs reforms or will 'continue to sink'
French President Emmanuel Macron offered France's support for the Lebanese people on a visit to Beirut after the port blast, but said crisis-hit Lebanon would "continue to sink" unless its leaders carry out reforms.Macron said France's solidarity with the Lebanese people was unconditional, but said he wanted to tell some "home truths" to political figures."Beyond the blast, we know the crisis here is serious, it involves the historic responsibility of leaders in place," Macron told reporters.
Iran president calls for probe into effects of Beirut explosion
Iranian President, Hassan Rouhani, has called for the repercussions of the explosion that devastated the port of the Lebanese capital Beirut.Rouhani described the explosion as a “tragic accident that caused deep sadness in Iran”.In a message sent to his Lebanese counterpart, Michel Aoun, yesterday, the Iranian president expressed his country’s readiness to send medical aid to Lebanon, treat the wounded and provide any other necessary help.Iranian Parliament Speaker, Muhammad Baqer Qalibaf, also confirmed the Islamic Republic’s readiness to provide humanitarian assistance to the Lebanese authorities, the Fars news agency reported.
Haneyya extends condolences to Lebanon after devastating blast
DOHA, (PIC)Head of the political bureau of the Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, Ismail Haneyya, has extended condolences to the Lebanese government and people over the deadly explosion at the Port of Beirut.Haneyya phoned Michel Aoun, the president of Lebanon, Hassan Diab, the prime minister of Lebanon, and Nabih Berri, the speaker of the parliament of Lebanon, to express his full solidarity with the Lebanese people.The Hamas leader offered his deepest condolences to the families of those who fell victim to the tragic blast and wished the injured a speedy recovery.
Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood sends condolences to Lebanon
Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood group, which has been banned since the 2013 military coup, expressed its deepest condolences and solidarity with Lebanon after a devestating explosion ripped through the city.In a statement, the Muslim Brotherhood urged for providing “assistance and support to Lebanon so that it can overcome this horrific disaster and its aftermath.”The group added that it hoped those trapped beneath the rubble would be located quickly .
Hamas calls for forming national committee to defend J’lem
DOHA, (PIC) Hamas Movement has called for forming a national committee of Palestinian factions and political forces responsible for handling the file of Jerusalem and defending it.In press remarks on Wednesday, member of Hamas’s political bureau Maher Obeid said that the demolition campaign in the Jerusalem district of Silwan is part of Israel’s practical steps to Judaize the holy city and carry out its annexation plans.Obeid added that Israel’s persistence in demolishing homes and displacing the Palestinians in Jerusalem entails an all-out national effort to deter Israel from putting pressures on the Jerusalemite people to leave their city.
Pro-BDS, BLM activist Cori Bush defeats pro-Israel candidate in US primary
Cori Bush, a Black Lives Matter activist and supporter of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against the Israeli occupation, caused an historical upset yesterday in the US primary elections. The 44-year-old nurse, who was once homeless, ousted ten-term political veteran and keen supporter of the Zionist state, William Lacy Clay.In a closely fought election, Bush defeated Clay by only three percentage points, gathering 49 per cent of the votes to Clays 46 per cent to become the Democrat candidate for Missouri’s 1st Congressional District in this year’s US elections. The seat is traditionally held by the Democrats.Yesterday’s result was a major reversal of 2018 when the two candidates went head to head. Bush, who was endorsed by Senator Bernie Sanders, attempted to unseat Clay but lost by 20 points.
*views, Articles, FEATURES*
Ayodhya: Ruling Class's Cynical Dream of Remaking India in Its Own Image:Neera Chandhoke, thewire
Ziya Us Salam on the vilification of the Tablighi Jamaat, its apolitical stance, and his latest book: newslaundry.com
Modi’s speech in Ayodhya marks a decisive turn away from secularism for India:Sruthisagar Yamunan
Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:49 PM)