22 November 2020

· Row Over Love Jihad Exposes BJP Leaders’ Hypocrisy; RSS Holds 2-day Meet To Discuss 'Love Jihad'. UP govt to test people coming from Delhi amid rise in Covid-19 cases; Night Curfew Imposed in MP, Gujarat, Rajasthan; Lockdown again in Maharashtra? decision in 8-10 days.



22-11-2020 ,20:18 IST


·     Row Over Love Jihad Exposes BJP Leaders’ Hypocrisy; RSS To Hold 2-day Meet To Discuss 'Love Jihad' From Today, Bhagwat To Participate

·     UP govt to test people coming from Delhi amid rise in Covid-19 cases; Night Curfew Imposed in MP, Gujarat, Rajasthan; Lockdown again in Maharashtra? decision in 8-10 days.

·     Saudi says it seeks a way to end dispute with Qatar




Row Over Love Jihad Exposes BJP Leaders’ Hypocrisy:report

NEW DELHI:A couple of days ago, BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain while campaigning in Srinagar for local bodies election was asked by a reporter whether his marriage with his wife who came from a Hindu family was a case of love jihad. Hussain laughed it off, a video viral on social media shows.The reporter’s question was in the context of the debate triggered by recent announcements by several BJP-ruled states that they would enact laws against love jihad— a bogey invented by the Hindutva parties to allege that Muslim men entice Hindu women into marriage for converting them to Islam.First, it was BJP government in MP which said it would draft a law against love jihad. Then, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh made similar announcements. Several states, including MP, already have laws against forced conversions.Critics have slammed BJP leaders for harping on love jihad and the announcements of banning inter-faith marriages. They say such laws will criminalise choice—the liberty of the citizens to choose their life partner.They have pointed out the hypocrisy of the saffron party as they argue that several BJP leaders have married women from other religions.Shahnawaz Hussain is a good case in point. He married Renu Sharma in 1994. It was a love marriage. Renu’s family had objected to their marriage and it was firebrand BJP leader Uma Bharti who suggested a way for the couple to navigate the family hurdle: go abroad.Last year in February, the niece of a BJP national general secretary Ram Lal married the son of Congress leader Surheeta Kareem in Lucknow.According to the media reports from that day, wedding ceremony was attended by top BJP leaders, including Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik, UP Deputy Chief Ministers Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma, and ministers Suresh Khanna and Nand Gopal Nandi.Expelled BJP leader I.P. Singh had tweeted, “Senior leaders of our party spread Hindutva knowledge in the world and say that there is a threat from Islam. And they are able to take care of their sisters and daughters. They elope with Muslims. This will not be called love jihad since it’s their family matter…”No different is the story of Union Minister for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi. He has been married to Seema since 1983. The couple had to face a lot of difficulties in convincing their families for marriage given that Seema comes from a Hindu family.BJP leader Najma Heptulla’s daughter is married to a Hindu. Similarly, controversial BJP leader Subramanian Swamy who frequently has a dig at Indian Muslims has his daughter Suhasini married to Nadeem Haider, son of Salman Haider, former foreign secretary of India.While scanning archives of Sangh Parivar’s Muslim side, one name that first comes to mind is Sikandar Bakht. He is being regarded as the first Muslim face of the Jan Sangh which later rebranded itself as BJP.Bakht started his political career with the Congress but switched to Sangh in 1977. But years ago, Bakht’s love affair with Raj Sharma had sparked a controversy after Hindu Mahasabha had objected to his marriage saying Muslim men were endangering Hindus by luring their women away.Clarion India




RSS To Hold 2-day Meet To Discuss 'Love Jihad' From Today, Bhagwat To Participate

In light of the announcement made by several states to come up with a law against Love Jihad, RSS is said to hold a brainstorming meeting on Sunday over the issue of Love Jihad across the country. Sources have stated that the two-day meeting of All India Executive Board of Eastern UP region of RSS is said to begin in Prayagraj from Sunday onwards. RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat along with union officials is also said to participate in the meet that will discuss the various aspects of Love Jihad and the ways to tackle and curb such incidents in the future, sources added. Apart from love jihad, various other issues such as environment and climate change, water conservation, social harmony, use of polythene will also be discussed in the two-day meet.



Hathras case accused taken to Gujarat for polygraph, brain mapping test by CBI

Lucknow: 4 accused in the Hathras case who are lodged in Aligarh jail are being taken to Gujarat's Gandhinagar for a polygraph and brain mapping test by a team of Central Bureau of Investigation officials.




MP CM Chouhan chairs first meeting of 'gau cabinet'; council of ministers to be formed for cow protection

Bhopal: The first meeting of Madhya Pradesh's 'gau cabinet' concluded on Sunday with various decisions taken by the cabinet for protection and conservation of cows. The meeting was chaired by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan who had announced the newly-formed cabinet earlier this week. CM Chouhan in a video said, "Ministers of departments related to animals and principal secretary will together form a council of ministers of 'Mantri Parishad Samiti' to work on cow protection and promotion." After the cow cabinet meet, Chauhan left for the cow sanctuary in Agar where it is believed that the Chief Minister can make more announcements for cow protection.



5-year jail term for ‘offensive’ post: Kerala’s chilling law

Kerala Governor Arif Mohammad Khan has given his approval to a draconian ordinance by LDF government amending the Kerala Police Act that provides for jail term for any social media or cyber post that is deemed “offensive” or threatening. Khan’s office Saturday confirmed that he had signed the ordinance that incorporates a new Section, 118 (A), in Kerala Police Act. Accordingly, any person who creates or sends any information that is offensive or is intended to offend or threaten another person, through any means of communication, is liable to face imprisonment of five years or a fine of Rs 10,000 or both.




NDTV Exclusive: Satellite Images Hint At Renewed China Threat In Doklam

New Delhi: High resolution satellite imagery accessed by NDTV indicates that in addition to setting up a village more than two kilometres within Bhutanese territory on the eastern periphery of the contested Doklam plateau, China has built a road in the same area that stretches approximately 9 kilometres inside Bhutanese territory. It is believed that this road could ultimately give the Chinese forces an alternate route to Zompelri ridge, which Indian Army had prevented Chinese forces from accessing in 2017 when the two sides faced off on the Doklam plateau. On that occasion, Chinese construction workers had attempted to access the ridge by extending their existing track near the Indian Army's post at Doka La which lies on the boundary between Sikkim and Dokala. Now, 3 years later, Chinese construction workers, working on a different axis, have built a new road along the banks of the Torsa river, which extends southwards from the border between China and Bhutan.




Indian Army takes a leaf out of Chinese warfare, deploys tunnel defences in Ladakh: HT

While the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) propaganda machinery has reported frying of Indian troops by futuristic energy weapons on August 29 in East Ladakh, the Indian Army has dug into Chinese warfare manuals and deployed “tunnel defences” to pre-empt any further transgressions from the adversary.On August 29-30, the Indian Army troops along with SFF occupied positions on LoC south of Pangong Tso lake on Kailash Range ridgeline for the first time since 1962. Indian Army has already dismissed PLA energy weapon report as fake news.The Chinese successfully used tunnel defences against Japanese in Second Sino-Japanese war, the Vietcong used the same tactics at against Americans in the guerrilla war and North Korean in Korean war in 1960s. PLA has built tunnel shelters to house aircraft at Lhasa air base and underground pens to house nuclear ballistic missile submarines in Hainan Islands in South China Sea.



Massive anti-tunnelling operation on along International Border in Jammu and Kashmir’s Samba

JAMMU:A massive operation is underway near the International border in Samba sector to unearth an underground tunnel which was suspected to have been used by 4 JeM militants to sneak into the country from Pakistan, said officials on Nov. 22. All 4 militants were killed in a gunfight when a Kashmir-bound truck, in which they were travelling, was stopped for checking at Ban toll plaza on Jammu-Srinagar national highway on November 19.PTI



Muslims and AIMIM party not related:Union Minister Kishan Reddy

Hyderabad:Hitting out at AIMIM, Union Minister G. Kishan Reddy on Sunday alleged that the Asaduddin Owaisi-led party was ‘family-run’ and has no relations with Muslims. Seeking votes for BJP for overall development in Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation polls, Kishan Reddy charged the MIM with having a history of ‘harassing’ poor Muslims and ’grabbing’ their assets using mafia.“As far as Majlis party ( AIMIM) is concerned, BJP is very clear (in its stand). There is no relation between the Majlis party and Muslims. Muslims brothers are different and the Majlis party is different.PTI



Support for Sonia Gandhi, Rahul apparent to ‘anyone not blind’: Salman Khurshid

Following criticism by some leaders of state of affairs in Congress in the wake of the party’s poor show in Bihar polls and Assembly bye-elections, senior leader Salman Khurshid on Sunday said there was no leadership crisis in the party and an all-round support for Sonia Gandhi and Rahul was “apparent to anyone who is not blind”.Claiming that there were enough forums in the Congress for airing views, Khurshid told PTI, “The leadership listens to me, I am given an opportunity, they (those criticising in the media) are given an opportunity, where does this thing come from that the leadership is not listening.”






UP govt to test people coming from Delhi amid rise in Covid-19 cases

With a surge in COVID cases across Delhi, the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh has decided to test all people coming from Delhi. In a statement, UP Chief Secretary Rajendra Kumar Tiwari said: "We will be testing people coming from Delhi via flight, bus or train, in the wake of a surge in Covid-19 cases in the national capital." Delhi has been witnessing a surge in coronavirus cases over the last few days, forcing the neighbouring states and cities to restrict the movement of people. Earlier, the local administration in UP's Gautam Buddha Nagar, and Haryana's Faridabad and Gurugram had decided to randomly test passengers coming in from the national capital.IANS



As Covid-19 cases surge, Centre sends high-level teams to Himachal, Punjab, UP

On a day when the country witnessed more active Covid-19 cases than recoveries for the first time in 47 days, the central government has decided to dispatch high-level teams to Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh to support them in pandemic response and management.Across the country, a total of 45,882 new cases were detected on Thursday, slightly higher than the 44,807 who were declared to have recovered.The three states have recently witnessed a marked rise in the number of active coronavirus cases.  Earlier, similar teams were sent to Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Manipur and Chhattisgarh.



COVI: Night Curfew Imposed in Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Rajasthan

Jaipur: With the rise in spread of COVID-19, three states – Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Rajasthan – have imposed curfew during the night in districts that have registered a massive increase in the number of positive cases. To bring in a complete lockdown, states would need consent of Union Ministry of Home Affairs. Madhya Pradesh, after having reported 1,500 positive cases on Friday, which was the highest in the last 40 days, imposed a curfew from 10 pm to 6 am in five districts – Bhopal, Ratlam, Vidisha, Indore and Gwalior – starting Saturday. This curfew will not bar people associated with essential services, goods transport and night shifts at factories.



Lockdown again in Maharashtra? Deputy CM Ajit Pawar says decision in 8-10 days

With Maharashtra witnessing a massive rise in coronavirus cases after the festival season, Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar has hinted at the reimposition of lockdown in the state in the coming days.Ajit Pawar said, "There was a huge crowd during the Diwali period. Even at the time of Ganesha Chaturthi, we saw crowds. We are speaking to relevant departments. We'll review the situation for the next 8-10 days and then the further decision will be taken about the lockdown."



Gurgaon "Covid Lab" Busted, Some Went To US With Fake Reports: Cops

Gurugram: Acting on a tip-off, Haryana Police on Saturday busted a fake pathology lab, which forged COVID-19 test reports, and arrested two persons, in Sainikhera village in Gurugram's Sector 30. The accused have been identified as Anirban Roy, who is from Kolkata, and Parimal Roy of Murshidabad. The duo was residing in a rented accommodation in the village. Drug Controller Officer Amandeep Chauhan said Chief Minister's Flying Squad received a complaint that fake coronavirus test reports were being generated in Gurugram, which people were using to travel abroad.



G20 leaders back ‘equitable’ global access to COVID-19 vaccines

Leaders of the world’s 20 biggest economies will pledge on Sunday to ensure a fair distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, drugs and tests around the world, according to a draft communique and do what is needed to support poorer countries struggling to recover from the coronavirus pandemic.“We will spare no effort to ensure their affordable and equitable access for all people, consistent with members’ commitments to incentivise innovation,” the G20 leaders said in the draft document seen by the Reuters.“We recognise the role of extensive immunisation as a global public good,” it said.






Saudi says it seeks a way to end dispute with Qatar

Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister says Riyadh is seeking a way to resolve the three-year rift with its Gulf neighbour Qatar. Commenting on the dispute on Saturday, Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud said Saudi Arabia is continuing to find a way to end the blockade on Qatar, but he added it remains conditional on addressing security concerns. Last month, Prince Faisal said Saudi was committed to finding a resolution. “We continue to be willing to engage with our Qatari brothers and we hope that they are as committed to that engagement,” he said. “But we do need to address the legitimate security concerns of the quartet and I think there is a path toward that” with a solution “in the relatively near future”. Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said last week there are no winners in the Gulf crisis, adding his country is hopeful it will end “at any moment”.But Yousef al-Otaiba, UAE’s ambassador to the US, told Israeli media he did not believe a resolution was imminent. “I don’t think it gets resolved anytime soon simply because I don’t think there has been any introspection,” al-Otaiba said.



Israeli army launches air raids on besieged Gaza Strip

Israeli military has carried out air raids on the besieged Gaza Strip, causing property damage but no casualties, Palestinian media reported. According to Wafa, the official Palestinian news agency, Israeli warplanes fired a series of missiles at positions in the western, eastern, and southern part of the strip early Sunday, including open farmland.Witnesses said the pre-dawn strikes hit targets in Gaza City and the southern Gaza cities of Rafah and Khan Younis, where flames and plumes of smoke could be seen rising from some sites.There was no immediate claim of responsibility from any of Gaza’s military groups. Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum blamed the new escalation on Israel.“ Israeli occupation is the prime responsible for everything that happens in Gaza as it continues to blockade it and carry out attacks. The resistance is only acting in self-defence,” Barhoum said.




UK amends status of Israel and Jerusalem following pressure from pro-Israel lobby

UK government has responded to pressure from the Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Conservative Friends of Israel by listing Israel and occupied Jerusalem together as one country in its weekly update to COVID-19 related travel corridors. Yesterday the Board condemned the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) in a tweet which contained a screenshot of the revised FCDO list that had made a clear distinction between the status of Israel and Jerusalem by including the two territories on its list as separate countries.Though the list was in line with US foreign policy, the Board, which over the years has adopted the hard-line positions of the Israeli far-right towards the Palestinians, slammed the UK Foreign Office.  "Absolutely inappropriate to list 'Jerusalem' as a separate country. We have taken this up with ⁦@FCDOGovUK⁩ this morning & they are urgently reviewing it" said the Board in its tweet.




Erdogan calls on EU for dialogue, says Turkey’s future in Europe

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called on European Union for dialogue, warning the bloc not to become a “tool for enmities” during escalating tensions over Eastern Mediterranean. Turkey’s deployment of a vessel to search for natural gas in waters claimed by Greece set off a fierce war of words between Ankara and EU member states, who early this month extended sanctions against Ankara for another year. The measures included allowing visa bans and asset freezes against individuals involved in contested gas exploration in the Mediterranean. “We expect EU to keep its promises, not to discriminate against us or at least not to become a tool to open enmities targeting our country,” Erdogan said in a video address to his ruling party congress on Saturday.



‘Backward in time’: Israeli scientists claim to reverse ageing

Israeli scientists say they have managed to not only successfully stop biological ageing process but to reverse it, using only oxygen. The study, a collaboration between Tel Aviv University and Shamir Medical Center, administered high-pressure oxygen in a pressurised chamber and said it reversed 2 processes relating to ageing and illness. Using hyperbaric oxygen treatments (HBOT) on ageing healthy adults, the researchers found the shortening of telomeres (chromosome ends) and the accumulation of old and malfunctioning cells in the body could be reversed.That is, the adults’ blood cells actually grow younger as the treatments progress. Some 35 adults over the age of 64 took part in the study and were given HBOT for 90 minutes a day, 5 times a week for three months. The study was published in Aging magazine on Nov.18. Shai Efrati, a professor at Tel Aviv University who runs Aviv Clinics in Florida, told The Jerusalem Post the study indicates that the cellular basis for the ageing process can be reversed. “Today telomere shortening is considered the ‘Holy Grail’ of the biology of ageing,” he said.The study, Efrati said, “gives hope and opens the door for a lot of young scientists to target ageing as a reversible disease”.




5 Times More Children Than Fighters are Being Killed in Conflicts, Says New Report

DOHA:On the occasion of UN World Children’s Day, at a special joint symposium hosted by UNICEF and World Health Innovation Summit for Health (WISH), Save the Children launched a new report revealing shocking new data on children living on the frontlines of conflict.In 2019, the number of children living in high-intensity conflict zones increased to 160 million from 157 million in 2018, while the total number of children living near conflict increased by 9 million. The report, ‘Killed and Maimed: A Generation of Violations Against Children in Conflict’, presents the full extent of the situation facing these children in armed conflict. Inger Ashing, CEO of Save the Children, an active WISH partner, spoke at Nov.20 symposium on the report’s main findings, which shows that 5 times more children than fighters are being killed in conflicts, and that the number of grave violations against children has almost tripled since 2010. 6 grave acts include killing and maiming; recruitment and use of children by armed forces and groups; rape and sexual violence; attacks on schools and hospitals; abduction; and denial of humanitarian access.Clarion India




Azerbaijan: Armenians turned Aghdam into ruined city

Residents of Aghdam, which was occupied by Armenia for 27 years, said Saturday it was turned into a ruined city, Anadolu reports.In Aghdam, where the Armenian army withdrew Nov. 20, there are almost no steady buildings.About 143,000 Azerbaijanis once live in the city but it now consists of poorly maintained roads and demolished buildings.The double-minarets mosque, which was built in the 19th century, is the only building in Aghdam whose main structure remains intact. But it is in a very poor and neglected condition.The destruction by Armenians in Aghdam during the occupation was described in the foreign press as the "Hiroshima of the Caucasus."



‘Save yourselves’: Ethiopia warns Tigrayans of Mekelle attack

Ethiopia’s army plans to surround the capital of Tigray with tanks and may attack the city with artillery to end a nearly 3-week war, a military spokesman said, urging civilians to “save themselves”.Ethiopian forces seized the town of Idaga Hamus, 97km  from the rebel-held Tigray capital of Mekelle, a government task force said on Sunday.“Our defence force took control of Idaga Hamus town, which is located on the road from Adigrat to Mekelle. The defence force is advancing to capture Mekelle, which is the final goal of the operation,” it said in a tweet.Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), which is refusing to surrender its rule of the northern region, said its forces were digging trenches and standing firm.



France demands Pakistan ‘rectify’ Macron Nazi comment

France is demanding Pakistan withdraw comments made by one of its ministers that President Emmanuel Macron was treating Muslims like Nazis treated Jews in World War II.The comments posted on Twitter by Pakistan’s Federal Minister for Human Rights Shireen Mazari on Saturday came as part of a clash between Pakistan and France over the republication of caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad by satirical French magazine Charlie Hebdo.The images have sparked anger and protests in the Muslim world, especially in Pakistan.“Macron is doing to Muslims what the Nazis did to the Jews – Muslim children will get ID numbers [other children won’t] just as Jews were forced to wear the yellow star on their clothing for identification,” Mazari said in a tweet linking to an online article that had initially reported that France would implement an ID number system for Muslim children and later posted a correction.



Huge crowd gathers for Pakistani firebrand cleric's funeral

Tens of thousands of men have gathered in Lahore for the funeral of hardline Pakistani cleric Khadim Hussain Rizvi, with the mourners for the most part flouting mask-wearing rules even with the country on the cusp of a second wave of the coronavirus outbreak.Vast crowds of men were seen thronging the centre of the eastern city ahead of Rizvi's funeral on Saturday, chanting in unison.His death came just days after he led a paralysing anti-France rally in Islamabad, threatening to repeat a 2017 blockade that crippled the capital, and he has called for the nuclear destruction of some European countries. No cause of death has been announced for the 54-year-old Rizvi, who died Thursday after suffering a high fever and difficulties breathing, and no Covid-19 test or autopsy were conducted on the long-time wheelchair user.



In final days of Oval Office, Trump pursues policies to make Joe Biden's task more difficult:New York Times

Voters have decided that President-elect Joe Biden should guide the country through the next four years. But on issues of war, the environment, criminal justice, trade, the economy and more, President Donald Trump and top administration officials are doing what they can to make changing direction more difficult.Trump has spent the last 2 weeks hunkered down in the White House, raging about a “stolen” election and refusing to accept the reality of his loss. But in other ways he is acting as if he knows he will be departing soon and showing none of the deference that presidents traditionally give their successors in their final days in office.During the past four years Trump has not spent much time thinking about policy, but he has shown a penchant for striking back at his adversaries. And with his encouragement, top officials are racing against the clock to withdraw troops from Afghanistan, secure oil drilling leases in Alaska, punish China, carry out executions and thwart any plans Biden might have to reestablish the Iran nuclear deal.In some cases, like the executions and the oil leases, Trump’s government plans to act just days — or even hours — before Biden is inaugurated on 20 January.






Inside Track: 2 reasons why BJP govt could be delaying framing rules under CAA: Coomi Kapoor



It was wrong for the Home Minister to describe a coalition of Kashmiri political parties as a ‘gang’:Tavleen Singh



Liz Mathew Explained: Politics of BJP’s anger against the Gupkar alliance and Congress



Right-Wing Jihad For Muslim Exclusion: Shihab Khan



Why is Jammu as unhappy as Srinagar? People grumbling that BJP left them in the lurch  :Anil Anand



Why is SC discouraging Article 32,which Ambedkar said was ‘heart & soul’ of the Constitution?:Ranjona Banerji



Ramachandra Guha: When I was asked to help write a biography of Adani – and other near-misses



Arnab Goswami and Varavara Rao, Unequal Citizens Before the Law:N Venugopal Rao



Swadeshi Jagran Manch — how RSS-inspired body went from ‘pariah’ to key policy guide in 29 yrs:ARUN ANAND



In UP Government Affidavit on Siddique 'Terror' Arrest, No Evidence of Any Illegal Act



How CAA hampers India’s battle against radical Islam: Milind Murugkar



‘Love Jihad’: A Homage to Nuremberg & Anti-Miscegenation Laws;VAKASHA SACHDEV




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