29 September 2020

29 SEPT. NEWS: Amnesty International India Shuts Down as govt freezes all bank accounts, rights watchdog blames Govt's 'Reprisal'. No Advani, Joshi, Bharti but most other accused to be in court for Babri judgment tomorrow





 Amnesty International India Shuts Down as govt freezes all bank accounts, rights watchdog blames Govt's 'Reprisal'

Mumbai: After a successful 8-year run in India addressing several crucial human rights violations amid growing hostility and the govt’s clampdown on civil liberties, Amnesty International (AI) India has decided to shut its operations in the country. The decision, which will see close to 150 employees lose their jobs, came after the recent move by the Enforcement Directorate to freeze the organisation’s accounts. ED, following an FIR by CB), filed on Nov.5, 2019, on charges of an alleged violation of FCRA, had initiated a separate probe last year. The ED has now converted the preliminary inquiry into an ECIR (the equivalent of an FIR) alleging money laundering charges and froze all of AI India’s bank accounts. The ED has invoked the Prevention of Money Laundering Act this time.In a press statement, AI’s India office has said, “On 10 Sept.2020, Amnesty International India came to know that all its bank accounts were completely frozen by the Enforcement Directorate bringing most of the work of the human rights organization to a grinding halt.”It blamed ‘reprisal’ from the government for winding down its operations, adding, “This is latest in the incessant witch-hunt of human rights organizations by Government of India over unfounded and motivated allegations.”150-odd employees include the research, campaigns, advocacy, and tele-callers teams. Avinash Kumar is the current executive director of the organisation; he took over only a year ago, after his predecessor and well-known columnist Aakar Patel’s tenure ended. Despite being left in the lurch, several employees have come forward to work as volunteers for a few months to ensure that the pending work is completed. The organisation in recent years have been working on five crucial projects—business and human rights, individuals at risk, gender-based violence, human rights education, and access to justice in Jammu and Kashmir. Julie Verhaar, the acting secretary general of AI, has said, “This is an egregious and shameful act by the Indian Government, which forces us to cease the crucial human rights work of Amnesty International India for now. However, this does not mark the end of our firm commitment to, and engagement in, the struggle for human rights in India. We will be working resolutely to determine how Amnesty International can continue to play our part within the human rights movement in India for years to come.”



No temple-mosque dispute in Mathura, says priests’ body

AGRA: “We don’t want what happened in Ayodhya to happen here,” said Mahesh Pathak, president of All India Teerth Purohit Mahasabha. The body of priests said there is no dispute on the temple and the mosque as the matter was resolved by an agreement five decades ago, but the issue is being unnecessarily raked up again for “political gain.” The Mahasabha is a 60 years old registered organisation with its head office in Haridwar. It has over 90 organisations of temple priests across the country as its members. “Even if there were any disagreement, it would have been resolved amicably by the two communities without disrupting peace …. This is just an unnecessary diversion after 52 years of the agreement between the managements of Shahi Idgah mosque and Sri Krishna Janamsthan Sansthan in 1968,” said Mahesh Pathak, the national president of the priests’ body.


No Advani, Joshi, Bharti but most other accused to be in court for Babri judgment tomorrow

New Delhi: A majority of the 32 accused, barring senior BJP leaders such as L.K. Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, Kalyan Singh and Uma Bharti, are expected to be present in CBI court in Lucknow, which is expected to pronounce its verdict Wednesday in the 27-year-old Babri Masjid demolition case.Advani, Joshi and Bharti are likely to be absent due to their age and the Covid-19 pandemic. Bharti tested positive for the coronavirus Monday and has been admitted to AIIMS in Rishikesh.Among the other accused, Vinay Katiyar, who was the Faizabad MP in 1992; Champat Rai, VHP vice-president; former Madhya Pradesh minister and BJP leader Jaibhan Singh Pawaiya and party colleague Sakshi Maharaj confirmed that they will attend the proceedings as the court is set to give its verdict on the demolition of the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya on 6 December 1992. Judge S.K. Yadav had directed all 32 accused to be physically present in court for the verdict but an Advani aide told ThePrint that the former deputy prime minister won’t be attending.


Babri Masjid demolition case verdict | States told to strengthen security in communally sensitive districts

Centre has alerted all States to strengthen security arrangements in communally hyper-sensitive and sensitive districts to prevent possible clashes post the judgment in Babri Masjid demolition case by a special court for CBI cases in Lucknow on Sept.30. In an alert, Union Government said that the judgment could have an impact on the law and order situation, as fringe elements on both sides might communalise the verdict. According to the alert, many Muslim organisations, unhappy with the Supreme Court’s verdict on the Ramjanmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title suit case, were hoping that justice could still be done by convicting the accused in the demolition case. They might resort to protests if the verdict was not what they were hoping for, it said. The alert claimed that while some radical groups were looking for an opportunity to revive the anti-CAA/NRC/NPR agitations in the country, Hindu organisations were hopeful that the accused in the demolition case would be acquitted. Since the situation was under strain in some States owing to communal issues, State govts should intensify security in sensitive districts and keep a close watch on provocative content in the social media, the Centre said.


Scrap Places of Worship Act, rebuild temples demolished by Mughals: Wasim Rizvi writes to PM Modi

Lucknow: Former chairman of Shia Waqf Board, Wasim Rizvi, on Monday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to scrap the Places of Worship Act, 1991 calling it a law brought by the then Congress government to appease the Muslims. He also suggested that temples demolished by Mughal emperors should be rebuilt and mosques which stand there should be removed. In a video message, Wasim Rizvi confirmed that he has written to PM Modi to abrogate Places of Worship..., which was enacted by Congress government to "appease the Muslim community" and to grant security to "illegal mosques built by Mughal emperors after demolishing ancient temples". In his letter to PM, he has named Ram Janmabhoomi in Ayodhya, Krishna Janmabhoomi in Mathura, and Kashi Vishvanath temple in Varanasi among others as some ancient temples demolished by the Mughal rulers.


Varanasi: Kashi Vishwanath Temple-Gyanvapi mosque dispute case next hearing on Oct 3

Varanasi: Kashi Vishwanath Temple-Gyanvapi mosque dispute case came up for hearing on Monday in the district court which fixed Oct.3 as the next date for hearing. The Sunni Central Waqf Board had on Sept.18 filed a revision petition in the court which had fixed hearing on Sept.28.The petitioner had pleaded that as the case is related to waqf tribunal, it should be heard in Lucknow Waqf court. District judge Umesh Chandra Sharma on Monday fixed the next hearing on Oct.3. Later in January, Anjuman Intezamia Masjid Committee had filed an objection against the petition seeking survey of the entire Gyanvapi compound by ASI. TOI


Ayodhya Trust plans to build 1,200 temple pillars by next March, finish first floor by 2022

Lucknow :As the actual construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya is expected to start from Oct.15, Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra trust plans to complete the first floor by 2022. The 1,200 pillars with a depth of 200 metres are expected to be completed by March next year. Experts from IIT Madras and Roorkee’s Central Building Research Institute are testing three pillars to check if they are strong enough to hold the weight of the entire structure. An IIT Madras team had recently taken samples to test soil and concrete mix.Trust member Anil Mishra, who is looking after the construction on behalf of the Trust and the temple construction committee, said they were considering a phase-wise plan.


Detention can’t be forever: SC seeks J&K admin’s response to Mufti’s plea

New Delhi :The Supreme Court Tuesday asked Jammu and Kashmir administration to respond to Iltija Mufti’s fresh plea challenging the detention of her mother and former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti under Public Safety Act (PSA) and said that the detention cannot be forever. The SC also said that Mufti should approach authorities to attend party meetings in the Valley. A bench of justices S K Kaul and Hrishikesh Roy permitted Iltija and her brother to meet their mother in detention. Reacting to the top court’s order, Iltija, who is handling the Twitter account of PDP chief, said her mother’s habeas is being dragged on endlessly and that she will continue to fight for her release. “Not surprised that Ms Mufti’s habeas is being dragged on endlessly. A serious matter like illegal abrogation of Article 370 has been pending for over a year so one cant help but feel despondent. Nevertheless, I’ll continue fighting for her release. Meanwhile, parties associated with Gupkar Declaration should deliberate on the next step moving forward. Perhaps one can see how people of Leh united & mobilised themselves instead of depending on courts,” She tweeted. Iltija further said, “The result is obvious. A Leh delegation was immediately invited by the Home Minister who promised to fulfil their demands. Make no mistake, the fight for our special status and dignity has to be a political one.”


 Intimidation and Muscle Power Will Not Work in Kashmir, Says Saifuddin Soz

Srinagar: During the past two months, a huge drama unfolded over the detention of former Union minister and senior Congress leader Professor Saifuddin Soz. On July 29, a habeas corpus petition filed by the 82-year-old leader was dismissed by the Supreme Court after the J&K administration claimed that Soz was never under detention. The next day, however, when media persons reached his residence, they saw the Congress leader being detained inside his house by the police deployed there. Last week, however, he was “informed verbally by his security guards that he is now a free man”.The Wire‘s Irfan Amin Malik spoke to Soz, who was under detention for more than a year. Soz opens up on a variety of issues, including his experiences during his detention; the ‘lies’ of the government, including of IAS officers; the future of mainstream politics in J&K and how institutions such as the Supreme Court have been weakened. Edited excerpts follow.


Ladakh standoff | No war, no peace status along border: IAF chief

NEW DELHI:The present security scenario along our northern border is at an uneasy “no war, no peace status” and air power will be a crucial enabler for victory in any future conflict, Air Chief Marshal (ACM) R.K.S. Bhadauria said on Tuesday.  “Our defence forces are prepared for any eventuality. IAF [Indian Air Force] has responded with resolve to counter any misadventure. Air power will be a crucial enabler in our victory in any future conflict. It is therefore imperative that IAF obtains and maintains technological edge over our adversaries,” ACM Bhadauria said, addressing a webinar jointly organised by Centre for Air Power Studies and Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers.


In Response to MIB's Show Cause Notice, Sudarshan News Defends 'UPSC Jihad' Show

New Delhi: In its response to the show-cause notice issued by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB), Sudarshan News defended the ‘Bindas Bol’ show which accused Muslims of ‘infiltrating’ the civil services.According to The Print, the channel sent a 950 page response in which it claimed that attempts are being made to project a “nationalist channel” as “anti-national and anti-constitutional”. Its editor-in-chief Suresh Chavhanke told the website that the channel stood by its show.The Supreme Court restrained the channel from airing the remaining episodes of the show on September 15. The court was informed by the Centre on September 23 that the MIB had issued a show-cause notice to the channel, finding it prima facie in violation of the Programme and Advertising Codes. The court adjourned its hearing of the matter until October 5, giving the MIB time to take action against the channel, if it so deems fit. The channel was given time until Monday to respond.


Govt’s new defence acquisition policy drops offsets in 3 types of contracts

The government has decided not to have an offset clause in procurement of defence equipment if the deal is done through inter-govt agreement (IGA), government-to-government or an ab initio single vendor. The offset clause requires a foreign vendor to invest a part of the contract value in India. The decision, part of the govt’s new policy for defence acquisitions, was approved by Defence Acquisition Council Monday. Unveiling the new policy, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, in a Twitter post, said it has been “aligned” with PM Narendra Modi’s “vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat and empowering the Indian domestic industry through Make in India initiative with the ultimate aim of turning India into a global manufacturing hub”.He said with the “new Foreign Direct Investment policy announced, DAP 2020 has adequately included provisions to encourage FDI to establish manufacturing hubs both for import substitution and exports while protecting the interests of Indian domestic industry”.


CAG flags policy change months before Rafale deal

New Delhi :Changes made to Defence Procurement Policy in April 2016 allowed suppliers of Rafale fighter jets not to declare any offset partner when India and France signed a deal in September that year to buy 36 aircraft. Comptroller and Auditor General of India, in its Report No.20 of 2019 which was tabled in Parliament last week, said changes in the offset policy introduced by the govt in 2015 were “duly incorporated” with effect from April 1, 2016.This policy change meant that in the case of the Rafale deal, the foreign vendor did not have to declare an offset partner around the time of the signing of the contract in Sept.2016. On Rafale deal, CAG said the offset obligations were to kick in from Sept.2019. The first annual commitment, it said, should have been completed this month and Ministry of Defence (MoD) must obtain details.


'Another Nirbhaya':19-yr old Dalit girl gangraped in UP's Hathras, dies in hospital; opposition slams Yogi Govt

GHAZIABAD: A 19-year-old Dalit girl from a Hathras village in Uttar Pradesh who was brutally assaulted by 4 caste Hindu men succumbed to injuries at Delhi’s Safdarjang hospital in the early hours of Tuesday.The incident happened on Sept.14 when the girl went to collect animal fodder from the field. The girl was allegedly gang-raped and later strangulated with her dupatta. She was shifted to Delhi from AMU’s JN Medical College on Monday on the request of her father. A doctor from Aligarh Medical college said she had suffered permanent damage to her spinal cord because of strangulation and that the doctors were waiting for her condition to improve to conduct an operation. Hathras police have arrested the 4 accused — Sandip, Ramu, Lavkush, and Ravi — on charges of attempt to murder and gang rape. SSP Vikrant Vir had transferred SHO of Chandpa police station to police lines for failing to promptly act in the case. The girl’s brother said the body would be taken to the village for last rites and demanded that the accused should be hanged to death as soon as possible. Meanwhile, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has reminded CM Yogi Adityanath of his responsibility. BSPsupremo Mayawati has demanded all possible support to the aggrieved family and that the case should be heard in a fast track court. SP president Akhilesh Yadav said there was no hope left from “this insensitive govt.”Congress leader Alka Lamba blasted Union Minister Smriti Irani and NCW saying that this is a "small matter" for them and they "won't waste time speaking about this."  Angry netizens flocked Twitter to demand justice for her and questioned when will these horrible crimes against girls stop in our country? Lashing at the authorities, people demanded to know how many girls need to sacrifice their lives for India to enact a harsh law for a heinous crime like rape?the hindu/NDTV/


Cong CMs look at bypassing farm laws, its MP goes to SC

Congress has stepped up its agitation over the new farm laws, with the party asking the 4 states ruled by it to explore legislation to “bypass” their provisions. As Congress held protests outside Raj Bhavans across states, the party’s Thrissur MP, T N Prathapan, moved the Supreme Court against one of the Acts. Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh also announced that the state, which is seeing massive protests over the laws, would approach the top court.Congress general secretary (organisation) KC Venugopal said party president Sonia Gandhi had directed Punjab, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Puducherry to explore the possibility of passing laws under Article 254(2) of the Constitution, “to negate the anti-agriculture central laws, encroaching upon the states’ jurisdiction”.


Maharashtra govt issued orders to implement farm ordinances in August

Mumbai :While Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government has stoutly opposed the farm Bills recently passed by the Parliament, a state department had in August issued instructions for “strict implementation” of the three ordinances issued by Centre that preceded the farm Bills, making Maharashtra one of the early states to enforce the contentious measures. According to a 2-paged notification dated August 10, issued by the state Director of Marketing Satish Soni, all agriculture produce and livestock market committees (APMCs) and district agriculture cooperatives in the state were ordered to “strictly implement” 3 ordinances, which were converted into law by the Parliament.


Punjab farmers protest: ‘Rail roko’ agitation enters sixth day

‘Rail Roko’ agitation by Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee against the newly enacted farm laws entered sixth day on Tuesday.Members of the committee sat on railway tracks in Devidaspura in Amritsar, wearing black clothes, in protest against the laws.“On Oct 1, we’ll announce mass agitation together with others across the nation,” Committee’s General Secretary said.Protesting farmers in Punjab Saturday extended their ‘rail roko’ agitation, that began Thursday, by 3 days till Sept.29 following which Ferozepur Railway Division decided not to run trains on Sunday. Earlier, farmers had decided to block trains till Sept.26.“We have decided not to operate trains on Sept.27 as farmers are still squatting on some rail tracks in Punjab,”Divisional Railway Manager Rajesh Agrawal said. Further decision will be taken on Sunday evening as per prevailing circumstances, he said. A group of 31 farmer outfits in Punjab have already announced an indefinite ‘rail roko’ protest from Oct.1 in protest of the passage of 3 farm Bills in the Parliament.


 Muslims Set Up Langar For Protesting Sikh Farmers

Malerkotla: Setting a new example of solidarity and in an almost reciprocal gesture to the Sikh community, Muslims organised langar for protesting farmers in Punjab's Malerkotla on Sept. 26.  The Muslim community set up camps with free food near the protesting sites in parts of the state. This happened a day after Bharatiya Kisan Union and several other organizations began their nationwide demonstration and “chakkajam” against the three contentious farm legislations which were passed by Parliament earlier last week. Interestingly, Sikhs from Punjab had come from their state to Delhi and set up similar camps for people protesting against CAA, NRC at Shaheen Bagh, for days together, starting early in Feb. Social activist and author Harsh Mander wrote on Twitter, “Farmers from Punjab came to Shaheen Bagh to establish Langar in solidarity with their sisters protesting CAA/NRC. Now Muslim youth from Malerkotla serve food in solidarity with protesting farmers of Punjab. With these bonds of love that bind us, India is safe”.


BJP's Ally Troubles Soar. Now Chirag Paswan's Ultimatum On Bihar Polls

Patna: The ruling BJP, steeped in ally trouble, has been served an ultimatum by key Bihar ally Chirag Paswan just weeks before the October-November state election. Chirag Paswan, whose father Ram Vilas Paswan is a minister in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government, reportedly met BJP president JP Nadda yesterday and demanded a decision on seat-sharing at the earliest.If not, Paswan junior has reportedly told Mr Nadda, LJP will field candidates in 143 of Bihar's 243 seats.Sources say Chirag Paswan has also made it clear that he will not hesitate to put up candidates against Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's JDU. He reportedly reminded BJP chief that recently, JDU said it had no alliance with LJP. "So LJP can field candidates against JDU candidates," he said, according to sources. Chirag Paswan's warning intensifies the NDA vs NDA scenario in these polls after days of seat-sharing talks failed to yield results.


Police search channel that aired sting on ‘corruption’ by BSY family

Bengaluru Police began an investigation on Monday against officials of a private television channel that recently aired a sting alleging the involvement of members of Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa’s family in acts of corruption. Police carried out searches at the offices of Power TV and the home of its managing director-editor Rakesh Shetty, and also questioned an anchor. The investigation was triggered by a complaint filed by the director of a construction firm who has been cited by the channel as a source of information on the alleged corruption involving CM’s family. The channel has run a series of programmes over the last month using a sting audio of alleged conversations of Rakesh Shetty with an important member of the CM’s family, WhatsApp chats exchanged by a construction firm official with another member of the family, and documents showing large deposits in banks accounts of firms linked to a family member.


Umar Khalid Case: Delhi Police Months-Long Delay Means Vital Video Evidence Destroyed

At least three separate investigations into the 2020 Delhi Riots seek to establish exactly what transpired at the Jafrabad metro station in the last few days of February.  These investigations are the reason that political activist Umar Khalid and university students such as Safoora Zargar of Jamia Millia Islamia, Devangana Kalita and Natasha Narwal of JNU, and a recent MBA graduate Gulfisha Fatima are in prison. This metro station is also a short walk from the spot where Kapil Mishra of the ruling BJP gave his now infamous speech on 23 February at Maujpur Metro Station, hours before the violence started, giving the Delhi Police three days to disperse protestors opposed to his government. “After that we will not listen to you,” he said in the presence of a senior policeman.The video evidence was deemed so important that activists moved the Delhi High Court as early as 25 February 25, when the riots were still in progress, to request all surveillance footage and electronic evidence be preserved. Five months later, on 26 July, an additional sessions judge of a district court at a bail hearing was pushed to harshly criticise police’s “inscrutable indolence” in gathering the CCTV footage.Defence lawyers argued that the footage was essential to exonerate their clients.


1,000 scholars, activists back UP journalist Prashant Kanojia, say arrest ‘driven by vendetta’

New Delhi: Nearly 1,000 scholars and activists have signed a statement condemning the arrest of journalist Prashant Kanojia in Uttar Pradesh last month, saying the decision is “politically motivated and driven by vendetta”.The signatories include scholars from IIT, JNU, IIM and premier international institutions like the universities of Oxford, Columbia, and Johns Hopkins, besides the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) at University of London. Some of the prominent signatories are Gujarat MLA Jignesh Mevani, political activist Kavita Krishnan, poet Meena Kandasamy, activist Teesta Setalvad and student activist and writer Gurmehar Kaur.


Kerala man's conviction in terror case has helped NIA bolster ties with EU agencies

NIA’s probe against Thodupuzha native Subahani Haja Moideen not only ended in the latter’s conviction, but also helped the agency bolster its ties with security and police agencies in European Union (EU), especially France. NIA officials, including A P Shoukat Ali who investigated the case against Subahani, were hosted by French agencies to share information about the November 2015 Paris attack.


Delhi Police rejects Natasha Narwal’s plea for hard copy of charge sheet in February riots

Delhi Police have opposed February riots accused Natasha Narwal’s request for a hard copy of the over 18,000-page charge sheet that was filed by its Special Cell against 15 people on 16 September. Narwal is among the 15 accused named in the charge sheet submitted in FIR number 59/2020, that is being probed by the Special Cell. Like the other accused, she was also given an electronic version of the charge sheet.


Ranchi: 16 Tablighis pay Rs 2,200 fine each, can now return to home country

RANCHI: The court of chief judicial magistrate (CJM) here on Monday sentenced 16 foreign members of the Tablighi Jamaat to 3 months’ imprisonment and imposed a fine of Rs 2,200 on each on them.The order was issued after all of the accused pleaded guilty to the charges brought against them under Sections 269 and 290 of IPC and Section 3 of the Epidemic Diseases Act. 16 foreigners would be able to return to their countries immediately as they have already served the prison term after their arrest earlier this year.



Former Chief Minister of Assam Anwara Taimur Passed Away

Guwahati: Assam’s only woman chief minister Syeda Anwara Taimur died on Monday due to a cardiac arrest in Australia, her family sources said. She was 83. Taimur was also the lone Muslim chief minister of the state. The former chief minister was staying in Australia with her son for the past few years, the sources said. Taimur had helmed a Congress government in Assam from December 6, 1980, to June 30, 1981, when her term ended with the state being put under President’s rule for six months.Taimur was a Rajya Sabha member in 1988.She quit the Congress and joined the AIDUF in 2011. Before her foray into politics, the AMU alumna was a lecturer in Economics in Debicharan Barua Girls College at Jorhat in 1956.Her name did not figure in the contentious National Register of Citizens (NRC) final list in 2018 as she was away in Australia and could not apply for it, her family members said. PTI


Maharashtra: 'We are surviving on food packets distributed on roads, Muslim families in Bhandara battle floods, pandemic

Mumbai: “We are surviving on food packets that are distributed on roads. We have nothing left,” said Shakeela Begum. 54 year-old is a domestic worker and lost her husband a few years back. “Our essentials, clothes, furniture, electronics, everything is submerged. We are still trying to take out waters and snakes are coming out of it,” the mother of two said.The untimely water discharge of Madhya Pradesh’s Gosikhurd dam and added torrential downpour caused floods in several districts of Maharashtra in late Aug. Vidarbha region has often witnessed droughts followed by farmer suicides in high rates. The districts of Nagpur, Bhandara, Chandrapur, Gadchiroli, Gondia remain largely affected. Abdul Haq Sheikh sells shoes for living and his business has been widely affected since lockdown. He could barely make any sales. Ever since flood has hit Bhandara, his business has come to a halt.“We are 5 family members. Our stored grains are destroyed in flood water. The water has reached till the attic of our house, we are afraid to move back in,” he said.“What if the flood hits back and everything that we are trying to restore ruins again?” 26 year-old said. The rise in the water level of Vainganga River in Bhandara district has submerged many riverside homes. Mohim Khan, 21, resident of Baba Mastan Shah Ward, works at a family owned general store in Bhandara district and was looking forward to his sister’s marriage soon.“We had stored essentials and grains for her wedding. Everything has been washed away in flood water. We are suffering heavy loss,” Khan said. Nearly 50 families were rescued from the Baba Mastan Shah Ward and shifted to Muslim Library in the same area in early Sept.TwoCircles




Coronavirus Updates: 70,589 new cases, Covid-19 tally now over 61 lakh

The global toll due to Covid-19 passed the one million mark on Tuesday. The most deaths have been reported in the US, followed by Brazil and India. These three countries account for nearly 45 per cent of Covid-19 deaths globally. According to Reuters, over 5,400 people die from the disease every 24 hours. This results to around 226 people succumbing to disease per hour, or one person every 16 seconds. India’s coronavirus tally crossed the 61-lakh mark on Tuesday after the detection of 70,589 new cases. India’s count dips every Monday due to the number of samples tested, a trend that fits into a pattern, and is not unusual. Of the country’s 61,45,292 cases, 9,47,576 people are undergoing treatment, 51,01,398 people have been discharged and 96,318 people have died. India’s recovery rate is not 83.01 per cent, the highest in the world. The fatality rate, on the other hand, is 1.57 per cent.







Azerbaijan-Armenia clash: More troops killed as clashes rage in Nagorno-Karabakh

At least 26 more fighters have been killed in clashes with Azerbaijani troops in the breakaway region of Nagorno-Karabakh, according to its defence ministry, bringing their military death toll to 84 in the fiercest round of fighting in more than a quarter of a century. Al Jazeera also learned on Tuesday that the total number of civilians killed has risen to 11 – nine in Azerbaijan and two in Armenia, bringing the total death toll to 95.“This is a life-and-death war,” Arayik Harutyunyan, the Nagorno-Karabakh leader, was quoted by Reuters news agency as saying in a news briefing.Fierce clashes continued throughout the day on Monday, officials in Baku and Yerevan said.On Monday evening, Azerbaijani forces launched a “massive offensive at the Karabakh front line’s southern and northeastern sectors,” said Armenia’s Ministry of Defense spokesman Artsrun Hovhannisyan.


Turkey ‘indicts six more Saudis’ over Jamal Khashoggi murder

Turkish prosecutors have filed a second indictment against six Saudi suspects over the 2018 killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul, according to Turkey’s state news agency.Anadolu news agency said on Monday that two of the suspects were facing charges carrying aggravated life jail sentences. The charges against the other four carry sentences of up to five years in jail.


Not only Uyghurs but Utsuls of Hainan, Huis latest target of China's religious crackdown:ANI

Hainan: The ethnic minority of Utsuls of Hainan Island in China is facing increased surveillance and religious crackdown similar to that of Uyghur Muslim minority of Xinjiang, which has recently become the focus of global condemnation. Utsul Muslims, a small community-based in Sanya, a city on the island province of Hainan with a population of just 10,000 is being targeted for wearing traditional dress in schools and government offices and the authorities have imposed a ban on the same. "The official line is that no ethnic minority can wear traditional garments on school grounds but other ethnic minorities [in Sanya] don't wear traditional garments in their daily life so it makes no difference to them but to us, the hijab is an integral part of our culture, if we take it off it's like stripping off our clothes," said an Utsul community worker who requested anonymity, South China Morning Post reported.The order of banning hijabs, a religious symbol of Muslims, was met with protests where a group of girls was seen wearing headscarves and reading textbooks outside Tianya Utsul Primary School while being surrounded by the police. Besides the hijab, the traditional long skirts worn by Utsul women were also banned.


Xi Jinping says ‘Sinicizing Islam’ should continue in Xinjiang

Chinese President Xi Jinping on Sunday told a high-level party meeting its approach is bringing stability and prosperity to Xinjiang and the policy must continue ‘for a very long time’. China has been criticised by Western countries, including the US, for putting Uighur Muslims into camps for ‘vocational training’.  Rights groups have said that Uighurs and other minority Muslims are being kept in inhumane conditions, where they are being forced into labour, being subjected to political indoctrination and women being forcibly sterilised. Xi Jinping, at the party’s Third Central Symposium on Xinjiang Work, defended their totally ‘correct’ policies towards Xinjiang.theweek




Faizan Mustafa Explains : Farm Acts and federalism, indianexpress


A day before verdict in Babri Masjid demolition case, a message from the epics:Nalini Singh ,indianexpress


Authoritarianism and Anti-Muslim Violence: Comparing the Emergency to Today:Kristin Plys


FCRA Amendment | The real consequences of tightening rules around NGO funding:Abraham C Mathews


Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq


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