06 December 2020

Farmers’ Protest: Top Opposition leaders, parties back Bharat Bandh call. On Babri Demolition Anniversary, Muslims Vow to Continue Struggle for Justice. MP, Karnataka Govts Finalise 'Love Jihad' Laws. Saudi prince strongly criticises Israel at Bahrain summit



06-12-2020, 21:21 IST


 Farmers’ Protest: Top Opposition leaders, parties back Bharat Bandh call; support growing to repeal farm laws  

Top Opposition leaders, in a joint statement on Sunday, extended support for the December 8 Bharat Bandh call by the agitating farmers and said the new farm laws would “destroy agriculture by mortgaging it to corporates”.The joint statement was signed by Congress president Sonia Gandhi, NCP chief Sharad Pawar, National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah, DMK president M.K. Stalin, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury, CPI’s D. Raja, RJD’s Tejashwi Yadav and CPI(ML)’s Dipankar Bhattacharya among others. Tuesday's "Bharat bandh", which farmers say signals their growing disillusionment with talks, has been backed by a number of opposition parties, including the newly-minted People's Alliance for Gupkar Declaration in J&K and a collection of Left outfits issuing a joint statement.Signed by Sonia Gandhi, Sharad Pawar, MK Stalin, Akhilesh Yadav and Tejashwi Yadav, among others, the statement said: "(we) extend our solidarity with the ongoing massive struggle by Indian farmers... and support their call for a 'Bharat bandh' on December 8, demanding the withdrawal of retrograde agri-laws and Electricity Amendment Bill".Chief Ministers of Delhi (Arvind Kejriwal) and Telangana (K Chandrashekar Rao) have also backed the bandh, while Bengal's ruling Trinamool said it would extend "moral support" to farmers and stage sit-ins in various areas in the state for three days. Shiromani Akali Dal, which withdrew from the BJP-led NDA after the bills were passed, has also extended support.Farmer reps and union ministers met Saturday for a third time this week but the talks fell through. Dramatic images from the meeting showed irate farmer leaders mounting a silent protest - they held up placards that said "Yes Or No?". The (unasked) question was "Will the centre scrap the farm laws?" Shortly before they also threatened to walk out over "meaningless" talks and had to be persuaded to return to their seats.Actor Kamal Haasan’s Makkal Needhi Maiam stated that it will take part in the ongoing farmers’ protest that entered 11th day on Sunday.



Bharat Bandh: Farmers, trade unions in 12 states extend support

Farmers and trade unions from more than 12 states, including whole northern India, have so far extended their support for the 'Bharat Bandh' call of farmer organisations on December 8 to raise their voice against the Centre's three contentious farm laws enacted in September during the Monsoon Session of Parliament.Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Chandigarh, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Odisha and Tamil Nadu are among the 12 states and a joint platform of 10 central trade unions have so far extended their support to the call which was made public after the fifth round of the government-farmer talks remained inconclusive with both sides adamant on their points.As the ongoing farmers protest entered the 11th day on Sunday, over 40 farmer representatives engaged in a meeting since morning at Singhu Border -- one of the protest spots on the Delhi-Chandigarh route -- to chalk out a plan for the 'Bharat Bandh' and discuss further strategy of the agitation.IANS


I trained in Punjab, will return Khel Ratna award if farm laws not repealed: Boxer Vijender Singh

Boxer and Padma Shri awardee Vijender Singh joined the ongoing farmers' agitation at Singhu (Delhi-Haryana) border on Sunday. Singh, who won silver medals at the 2006 and 2014 Commonwealth Games in the middleweight division, was accompanied by Arjuna and Dronacharya awardees.Addressing protesting farmers at Singhu border, boxer Vijender Singh said he will return his Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award if the central government does not withdraw the contentious farm laws. "If the government doesn't withdraw the black laws, I'll return my Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award - the highest sporting honour of the nation," Vijender Singh said.


 Repeat of Shaheen Bagh? Plea Filed in Supreme Court Against Agitating Farmers

NEW DELHI – In a move reminiscent of legal challenges to Shaheen Bagh sit-in earlier this year, the Supreme Court has been approached to seek immediate removal of agitating farmers from borders around Delhi. A Delhi resident has filed a plea claiming that “they are blocking roads to hamper emergency/medical services”. They also increase the risk of COVID-19 spread in Delhi, Rishabh Sharma said in his plea through advocate Omprakash Parihar.The plea cited rapid increase in Covid-19 cases in Delhi, and that the protests were hindering the movement of people frequently travelling to Delhi from different states to get treatment in big government hospitals across the capital.“That the persons affected by such irresponsible acts of the protestors, and the state not in a position to remove these protestors as they are huge in number and this protest is causing a lot of trouble to the citizens of India, hence the petitioner is filing the present PIL before this court,” said the plea.


Threat Looms Over BJP Govt in Haryana As Two More JJP MLAs Support Protesting Farmers

CHANDIGARH : Trouble seems to be brewing within the BJP’s main coalition partner Jannayak Janta Party (JJP) in Haryana with two more out of its 10 legislators coming out openly to support the protesting farmers against new farm laws they say will destroy livelihoods.The legislators who posed a challenge to the just one-year-old post-election alliance government are Ram Kumar Gautam, the JJP’s senior-most rebel, and Amarjeet Dhanda.Both have asked the Centre to withdraw the newly introduced laws. They have joined their fellow party legislator Jogiram Sihag who last month turned down the government’s offer to be the Housing Board Chairman till the farm laws guarantee the MSP.“The farmers are producing foodgrains to feed the people and their children are protecting the country’s borders. The political leaders who are making inappropriate comments about the farmers should be restrained,” Gautam told the media.


Hundreds Rally in Toronto Outside Indian Consulate in Solidarity with Protesting Farmers

TORONTO – Hundreds of people gathered in front of the Indian consulate in downtown Toronto on Saturday to show their support for farmers in India who are protesting new agri laws which, they say, will destroy their livelihoods.Many of those who organized at the consulate are Canadians in the Sikh community who say the farmers work tirelessly to feed India and the world — and that the farmers need support now more than ever as their right to peacefully protest has been blocked by police who’ve used methods like tear gas, batons and water cannons against them.“Our farmers are the backbone of our nation. This issue has hit close to home … their lives matter to us, ” protester Mansi Kaur said over the sound of dozens of car horns sounding off at the rally.


Sikh-Americans hold protest rallies in US cities against farm laws in India

Hundreds of Sikh-Americans have held peaceful protest rallies in several cities across the US in support of the Indian farmers who have been protesting against the new agricultural reforms in India.A large car caravan of protesters from various parts of California blocked the traffic on the Bay Bridge on Saturday as they moved towards the Indian Consulate in San Francisco, while several hundreds gathered in downtown Indianapolis.PTI


 India to skip Canada-led coronavirus meeting after Trudeau’s comments on farmers’ protest: Reports

Union External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar will skip a Canada-led meeting on coronavirus, days after the country’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and some other leaders commented on the ongoing farmers’ agitation, The Indian Express reported on Sunday. India even summoned the Canadian High Commissioner after Trudeau’s comments.However, officially, India has cited “scheduling issues” as reason for giving the meeting a miss, and said that that it would not be correct to link the matter with Trudeau’s comments and the subsequent developments, The Indian Express reported.


On Babri Demolition Anniversary, Muslims Vow to Continue Struggle for Justice

NEW DELHI/l On this day 28 years ago, a frenzied mob of Hindu extremists descended on the town of Ayodhya in UP and demolished Babri Masjid, a Mughal-era mosque, in broad daylight in a wanton act of vandalism aimed at constructing a temple of Ram at the spot.For years, the Muslims and secular groups would hold events to observe December 6, the 28th anniversary of the Babri demolition, as a ‘black day in the history of Independent India’.Keeping with the trend, scores of people on Sunday morning attempted to march from Mandi House to Jantar Mantar in New Delhi but the police stopped them from going ahead.“I was addressing the gathering when the police came and snatched away my mic,” SQR Ilyas, a core member of All India Muslim Personal Law Board which fought the case in the court, told Clarion India.The march was organised by 17 groups to commemorate the demolition of the mosque. “We are doing according to the routine that we follow every year but the police did not permit us to proceed,” Ilyas said.Hitherto, the police would allow the march to proceed smoothly but this time many of those who were part of the march were detained by the police.The anniversary was observed as black day in Hyderabad and other parts of Telangana on an appeal by various Muslim organisations. Shops and business establishments were closed in some localities. Ilyas, who is also a lawyer, said the judgement passed by the apex court was strange. “The judgement says the mosque was not constructed after demolition of any temple but then allows construction of the temple. It is strange.”Muslims feel betrayed by “secular” parties like the Congress for aiding the Sangh Parivar to run a campaign against Babri Masjid. “Congress facilitated the demolition of Babri Masjid. They were in power but they did not stop the mob,” said Ilyas.Some people have suggested the idea that Muslims should now move on but Ilyas said that the struggle for justice would continue.  “It is not just about Babri Masjid. Our struggle is about religious freedom in India; our struggle is about justice and we cannot forget history and move on. We have to highlight the injustices done to the Muslims and tell this to our future generations.”Harsh Mander, a human rights activist, said that he did not agree with those who asked Muslims to move on. “The symbolism of the Babri Masjid demolition was not about one mosque but it was about the terms on which Muslims would have to live in India. The democratic institutes of the country failed to secure justice and, therefore, we need to resist and battle for justice.”Meanwhile, in Ayodhya, the annual “Yaum-e-Gham” or the ‘day of sorrow’ was cancelled and the business in the town ran like any other day.Speaking with Clarion India, Haji Mehboob, one of the litigants in Babri Masjid case, said, “The court has given verdict in favour of Hindus and there is nothing we can do now.”The day would be marked by hoisting flags on Muslim homes and would assemble at the Tedi Bazaar residence of Mehboob.“There were also instructions from the government to not hold any events,” Mehboob said.However, Quran reciting events were held at at different mosques of the town in memory of those killed following the December 6, 1992 demolition.Clarion India


Police detain activists at Mandi House who were demonstrating on Babri Masjid anniversary

NEW DELHI–More than 25 social activits belonging to different organisations, who had assembled at Mandi House to take out a march up to Jantar Mantar to demand punishment to those involved in illegal demolition of the Babri Masjid, were detained by police and kept at Mandir Marg Police Station.The march was organised by LRS. LRS has been organising the protest every year on the anniversary of Babri Masjid demolition on Dec.6 to demand punishment to those involved in pulling down the 15th century mosque in Ayodhya. Sub Inspector of Mandir Marg Police Station Naresh Bhatia told India Tomorrow, “We detained 25 people from Mandi House because they had no permission to take out a rally. They wanted to go to Jantar Mantar. They will, however, be released after a few hours”.Raghvan Srinivas, Birju Naik, Prakash from Lok Raj Sangathan, Arif Akhlaq, Shabnam Khan Sufiyan, Azeezur Rahman, Umar Daraz From Welfare Party of India, Mohd Shafi, Mohd Amir, Mohd. Faizan from SDPI were detained during the protest.India Tomorrow


White Paper discloses 1000 immovable properties gifted across the country to Tirupati Devasthanam: nationalheraldindia

 Tirumala shrine on the Venkatadri hills were in the news for three reasons: one, the Venkateshwara temple decided to open Vaikunta [Uttara] dwaram entrance to the shrine for 10 days this year in December as opposed to the earlier practice of keeping it open only for 2 days, after it was prodded into doing so by the High Court. Devotees believe it is auspicious to walk through the Vaikunta dwaram; one devotee had gone to court in January to get it opened for 10 days as is the practice in other temples.The second was the visit of President Ram Nath Kovind to the temple to offer prayers after taking the new Air India One B-777 to Chennai. The third, which caused a stir, was a white paper issued by the TTD (Tirupati Tirumala Devasthanam) which revealed that TTD owned 1000 plus immovable properties across the country spread over a little more than 8000 acres. There are no plans to sell off or lease the properties, mostly gifted by devotees.


Case Filed against 14 under ‘Love-Jihad’ Law After Woman Eloped with Lover in UP’s Mau

Uttar Pradesh police in Mau have filed a case against 14 people under anti-conversion ordinance after a woman eloped with her lover who belongs to a different religion.According to the police, the man was already married. The incident was reported from Molnalganj village under Chiraiyyakot police station in Mau district. A Case has also been registered under sections 366, 506 and 3/5 of the ordinance against religious conversions. The police came into action after registering the case, reported News18.The matter was reported from Molnaganj under Chiraiyakot police station area where a boy who was allegedly already married had eloped with a girl from different faith just before her marriage on November 30. As soon as the family members came to know about the matter, they informed the police. A case was registered after the father of the girl gave a written complaint.


Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka Govts Finalise 'Love Jihad' Laws

New Delhi: On Saturday, while BJP’s Karnataka state executive adopted resolutions for the passage and implementation of legislations against inter-faith marriages and cow slaughter in the state, Madhya Pradesh announced that conversion through marriage or by any other fraudulent means will attract prison term of up to ten years and fine of up to Rs 1 lakh under the proposed Madhya Pradesh Religious Freedom Act.Both states had promised to bring laws to counter ‘love jihad’, a Sangh Parivar-coined phrase to refer to a non-existent conspiracy by Muslims to convert unsuspecting Hindu women by luring them into marriage.The term has been brought into mainstream discussion and was given legal sanction when on November 28, the governor of the BJP-ruled Uttar Pradesh gave assent to the Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance, 2020, against “forcible or fraudulent religious conversions.”Madhya Pradesh’s ‘love jihad’ law closely follows Uttar Pradesh, under which there have already been arrests made. UP Police has also been stopping interfaith marriages between consenting adults under the ordinance.



After Police Stalling Interfaith Marriage in Lucknow, Muslim Youth Beaten up in Aligarh Court

LUCKNOW – Police in Lucknow stopped an interfaith marriage, which was taking place with the consent of both the families, leading to anger against the anti-conversion law.The police intervened just before the rituals began.“This is exactly what is going to happen now. The police will decide whether a marriage can take place or not. The courts have said that no one can stop consenting adults from living together but with this law, it is the police that will take a call,” said Maroof Ali, a young techie.Shirish Gupta, a relative from bride’s side, was equally upset.“The marriage was taking place in the presence of both the families but the police stopped the ceremonies. The guests were sent back without dinner. Could have never imagined such an incident would take place in Independent India,” he said.A Muslim cleric, who did not wish to be named, said: “Our apprehensions have come true sooner than expected. The police are now running the state and individual freedom has been mopped up by this new law.”According to reports, a Hindu Mahasabha district president Brijesh Shukla had submitted a complaint about the wedding in writing.The police reached the venue on Wednesday night where Raina Gupta, 22, was to marry her childhood friend Mohammad Asif, 24.



Concern over delay in hearing pleas against Citizenship Amendment Act in Supreme Court

Over 140 petitions challenging the CAA have been pending for nearly a year in the Supreme Court, leaving petitioners drawn from all walks of life and across the political spectrum “deeply disappointed” over the delay.“I am deeply disappointed and the case should be taken up for hearing at the earliest,” parliamentarian Jairam Ramesh, one of the petitioners, told The Hindu on Sunday.The last time the CAA case came up in court was on March 3 this year when Mr. Ramesh’s lawyer, senior advocate Kapil Sibal, made an urgent oral mention before the Chief Justice of India for a stay on the implementation of the law. He had said the case ran the risk of becoming infructuous.CJI had indicated referring the case to a Constitution Bench, but said the court may first hear the review petitions pending in the Sabarimala case. The court had asked Mr. Sibal to press for interim orders after the Holi vacation.


Eye on polls,  West Bengal BJP in-charge  Vijayvargiya says CAA likely to be implemented from January

Senior BJP leader and West Bengal in-charge Kailash Vijayvargiya has said the CAA was likely to be implemented from January next year as the saffron party-led Central government was keen on granting citizenship to the large refugee population in West Bengal. Bengal goes to polls in the next six months. Talking to the reporters on the sidelines of the party’s “Aar Noy Anyay” (no more injustice) campaign in North 24 Parganas district on Saturday, Vijayvargiya said, “We are hopeful that the process of granting citizenship to refugees under the CAA will begin from January next year.”West Bengal BJP in-charge accused the Trinamool Congress government of not being sympathetic towards the refugees. “The Centre has passed the CAA with the honest intention of granting citizenship to persecuted refugees coming to our country from neighbouring nations,” PTI quoted Vijayvargiya as saying.Reacting to Vijayvargiya’s remark, senior TMC leader and state minister Firhad Hakim alleged that BJP was trying to fool the people of West Bengal. “What does BJP mean by citizenship? If the Matuas are not citizens, how come they voted in assembly and parliamentary polls year after year? BJP should stop fooling the people of West Bengal,” he said.


Delhi High Court Finds Violation of Reservation Laws in JNU Faculty Appointment

Kolkata: In a further embarrassment for the Jawaharlal Nehru University administration, the Delhi high court has found the university violating stipulated reservation laws while recruiting an associate professor and a professor in the School of Social Sciences (SSS) and the School of International Studies (SIS).Four faulty members from the university, including two assistant professors from the concerned departments (Centre for Informal Sector & Labour Studies at SSS and the Centre for Inner Asian Studies at SIS) had moved the Delhi high court seeking the quashing of two advertisements published in August 2019, and the subsequent recruitment process for appointing teachers at the above-mentioned centres. The petitioners argued that while advertising for the vacancies, the university had flouted the norms of post-based reservation.


MP Badruddin Ajmal’s trust charged with sedition over foreign funds allegedly from terror outfits

The police in Assam’s Dispur on Saturday charged a registered public charitable trust, run by Lok Sabha MP and chief of AIUDF Badruddin Ajmal, with sedition and other offences, The Telegraph reported.The charges were levelled following a first information report lodged by Bharatiya Janata Party leader Satya Ranjan Borah at Dispur police station against Ajmal Foundation alleging that the organisation got funds from foreign agencies linked with terror outfits, according to the Hindustan Times.“The complainant alleges in the FIR that Ajmal Foundation had misused funds received from foreign agencies which had terror links,” Himangshu Das, ACP(Dispur), said. Ajmalm however, has denied the allegations and blamed the BJP for hatching a conspiracy. “It’s a false allegation,” Ajmal told ANI. “It’s an international conspiracy to defame AIUDF and Ajmal Foundation. It’s being done by [BJP leader] Himanta Biswa Sarma. He began his tactics as soon as we joined hands with Congress.”



Indian Academy of Pediatrics urges UP to revoke suspension of Dr Kafeel Khan

There is no complaint or any allegation of misconduct against him or any inquiry pending with the apex body of pediatricians in India, says Academy of Pediatrics (IAP), the largest body of Pediatricians in India, in a statement in support of Dr Kafeel Khan, who was suspended and arrested in 2017 on the charge of dereliction of duty following the death of children at the medical college in Gorakhpur. All other doctors suspended with him have been reinstated.In a statement issued on December 6, IAP President Dr Bakul Jayant Parekh and Secretary Dr G V Basavaraja, stated, “… his suspension has not been revoked by the Government of Uttar Pradesh although nine different enquiries are completed and he is cleared of any wrong doing. The others who were suspended with him were already reinstated.”


During Rajasthan crisis, BJP told Cong MLAs this will be sixth govt to be toppled: Gehlot

Jaipur :Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Saturday alleged that Congress MLAs met BJP leaders, including Home Minister Amit Shah and Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan, during the political crisis earlier this year in the state, and were allegedly told that the party’s government will be the sixth to be toppled by the BJP.e BJP has hit back at Gehlot over his allegations “without evidence” and for failing to control the “lava of dissatisfaction within the Congress”.During a virtual inauguration of a Congress office in Sirohi district on Saturday, Gehlot said the BJP is “about to start the game in Rajasthan once again”.


BJP loses two seats in local polls in PM Modi’s constituency Varanasi after 10 years

BJP has lost two seats in the Legislative Council in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s constituency Varanasi, after holding on to them for a decade, NDTV reported on Saturday. The Samajwadi Party was able to secure both the seats – one reserved for teachers and the other for graduates.While Samajwadi Party’s Ashutosh Sinha won from the Varanasi Division Graduates’ seat, his colleague Lal Bihari Yadav won from the teachers’ constituency. “It’s a big victory,” the channel quoted Yadav as saying. “I am happy with our result.”


Jammu :NIA files chargesheet against six in narco-terror case

Jammu ;NIA filed a chargesheet against six people from Handwara — allegedly involved in transborder narco-terror activities in Jammu and Kashmir and other parts of the country — before the NIA court here on Saturday.The accused include Abdul Momin Peer alias Peerzada Momen, an assistant lineman at the Power Development Department, Syed Iftikhar Abdrabi, a village level worker (VLW) working at Kupwara Block Development Office, Islam-ul-Haq, a sanitary shop owner, Afaq Ahmad Wani, a branch manager at Baramulla Central Cooperative Bank, Saleem Andrabi, who worked at a Bal Ashram under the Social Welfare Department, and Muneer Ahmad Banday alias Ishfaq, a cement shop owner.


‘In J&K, Authorities Don't Address People's Hardships’: DDC Candidate of Pakistani Origin

Kupwara, Kashmir: Among the many candidates standing for the District Development Council (DDC) elections in Kashmir, is 36-year-old Sumaiya Sadaf of Batergum, Kupwara district, who is originally from Muzaffarabad, the largest city in Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir (POK). Sadaf, the mother of four children, had moved to Jammu and Kashmir with her husband, Abdul Majeed, under the rehabilitation scheme announced in 2010 by the Omar Abdullah government for militants who had gone to Pakistan for training during the 1990s. Many of these militants had married and settled in POK, but given the option to surrender and return home, they arrived complete with their families.Five years after moving to J&K, Sadaf joined Umeed, a programme funded by the Central government to address social problems in far-flung areas. “I have been in social work for the last five years and I have seen the hardships that common people suffer every day. None of them have been addressed by authorities,” she told The Wire.


NDTV Exclusive: China Sets Up 3 Villages Near Arunachal, Relocates Villagers

New Delhi: China has constructed at least 3 villages, approximately 5 kilometres from the Bum La pass which lies close to the tri-junction between India, China and Bhutan in western Arunachal Pradesh.Beijing disputes the boundary between India and China in this region and the new constructions here could be a significant step towards reinforcing its territorial claims along the Arunachal Pradesh frontier. ''China has been using a strategy of settling Han Chinese and Tibetan members of the Communist Party along the India border to strengthen its territorial claims and escalate border intrusions," says China-watcher Dr. Brahma Chellaney. ''Like it used fishermen in the South China Sea, China uses civilian resources - herders and grazers - as the tip of the spear to intrude into Indian-patrolled Himalayan areas." The new satellite images presented in this report come a week after high-resolution satellite images appeared of Chinese village construction in Bhutanese sovereign territory, just seven kilometres from the Doklam face-off site between Indian and Chinese forces in 2017.


Outrage as Centre Announces Decision to Name Biotech Institute After RSS Ideologue

New Delhi: Centre’s decision to name the new campus of a biotechnology institute in Kerala after an ideologue of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh has invited protests from the state government and its opposition party too.Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan has urged the Union government to reconsider naming the second campus of the Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology at Thiruvananthapuram after M.S. Golwalkar.Vijayan has written to Union minister Harsh Vardhan, asking him to name the institution after a person with some contribution to science, and who is recognised worldwide.Harsh Vardhan had announced at the India International Science Festival’s curtain raiser that the new campus would be named ‘Shri Guruji Madhav Sadashiv Golwalkar National Centre for Complex Disease in Cancer and Viral Infection’.Golwalkar is considered among the first who shaped the ideals of Hindutva that the Bharatiya Janata Party is keen to implement. His writings are vast but do not deal with science.


Aligarh cop suspended for ‘raping’ Dalit woman who sought help in dowry case

A police inspector in Aligarh district has been suspended for allegedly raping a 45-year-old Dalit woman on the pretext of helping her in a 2018 dowry case. Posted with Aligarh police, the accused (name withheld) was investigating a dowry harassment case lodged by the woman’s daughter against her in-laws.The woman alleged that the accused would call her to a hotel on the pretext of sharing dowry case related documents and information and rape her in October, said police.She claimed that the man threatened her if she revealed the incident to anyone, according to police. She claimed that he would use objectionable words while talking to her over phone. She has shared recorded voice clips of phone calls between them.


Review closure of ‘Mirror’ dailies, safeguard jobs, Mumbai Press body tells Times Group

Mumbai Press Club on Sunday expressed “shock and dismay” over the closure of dailies, the Mumbai Mirror and Pune Mirror, and urged the Times Group to reconsider its decision to stop publishing the newspapers and “keep a good thing going”.The press body also urged the media group to ensure there was no retrenchment, and the jobs of all employees – journalists and non-journalists – associated with the newspapers were safeguarded.


Dabur, Marico accuse each other of false claims about honey, approach advertising regulator ASCI

Two leading homegrown rival FMCG brands Dabur and Marico are in an open spat with each other over claims regarding their honey brands and have taken the matter to advertising regulator ASCI.Dabur on Sunday said it is filing a complaint against rival Marico before the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) for claiming its Saffola Honey sample being passed through the NMR test.The Noida-based company claimed Marico’s Saffola honey has failed the NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) test and is misleading the consumers.PTI


Andhra : At least 140 fall sick with unknown illness in Eluru, water contamination suspected

At least 140 people, including children, were on Sunday hospitalised with an unexplained illness in the city of Eluru in West Godavari district, Andhra Pradesh, reported ANI.While the exact reason behind their condition remained unknown, officials suspected it to be a case of water contamination, according to reports. Officials, however, added that they were awaiting results of the water samples sent for testing. District Collector R Muthyala Raju told The Indian Express that blood samples of patients were also collected to determine the cause of illness.



PM Modi to lay foundation stone of new Parliament building: Total cost, dates and everything we know so far

As India looks to celebrate 75 years of its independence in 2022 with a new Parliament building in place, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay its foundation stone on December 10. The grand ceremony will be attended by leaders and representatives of all parties who will be present physically or via virtual mode. Making this announcement at a press conference Saturday, Speaker Om Birla said, “We started the journey of independent India in the old building, and when we complete 75 years, we will have the session of both Houses in the new Parliament building… It will not be a building of bricks and stones, it will be the fulfilment of the dreams of 130 crore people.”


Petrol price up 28 paise, diesel 29 paise a litre; rates touch 2-yr high

Petrol price on Sunday was hiked by 28 paise per litre and diesel by 29 paise, the fifth straight day of increase in rates due to firming international oil prices.Petrol price in Delhi rose to Rs 83.41 per litre from Rs 83.13. Diesel rates went up from Rs 73.32 to Rs 73.61 per litre, according to a price notification of oil marketing companies.PTI




After UK, Pfizer seeks emergency use approval of Covid vaccine in India: Report

Days after its parent company secured clearance in the UK and Bahrain for mass use, Pfizer India has become the first pharmaceutical firm to seek from the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) an emergency use authorisation for its Covid-19 vaccine in the country.The firm, in its application submitted to DGCI, has sought permission to import the vaccine for sale and distribution in India, besides waiver of clinical trials on Indian population in accordance with the special provisions under the New Drugs and Clinical Trials Rules, 2019, PTI reported official sources as saying."Pfizer India has submitted an application on December 4 to the DCGI seeking Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for its COVID-19 vaccine in India," a source told PTI.


Coronavirus may cause long-term erectile dysfunction in men: expert

As countries across the world continue to await a coronavirus vaccine amid the battle against the novel coronavirus crisis, experts say that even a mild case of the virus can cause long-term complications.Although treatments have improved and a vaccine is on the way, people need to be aware of the virus-related complications, including the possibility of "erectile dysfunction".Infectious disease expert Dr Dena Grayson has recently warned all not to let the guards down as the world waits for a vaccine.





Saudi prince strongly criticises Israel at Bahrain summit

A prominent Saudi prince harshly criticised Israel at a Bahrain security summit that was remotely attended by Israel’s foreign minister, showing the challenges any further deals between Arab states and Israel face in the absence of an independent Palestinian state.The fiery remarks by Prince Turki bin Faisal Al Saud at the Manama Dialogue appeared to catch Israel’s foreign minister off guard, particularly as Israelis receive warm welcomes from officials in Bahrain and UAE following agreements to normalise ties.Prince Turki bin Faisal opened his remarks by contrasting what he described as Israel’s perception of being “peace-loving upholders of high moral principles” versus what he described as a far-darker Palestinian reality of living under a “Western colonising” power.Israel has “incarcerated [Palestinians] in concentration camps under the flimsiest of security accusations – young and old, women and men, who are rotting there without recourse to justice”, Prince Turki said.“They are demolishing homes as they wish and they assassinate whomever they want.”


Saudi Prince: 'Netanyahu is a liar, crown prince did not meet with him'

Former Head of Saudi intelligence Prince Turki Al-Faisal has denied news of an approaching Saudi normalisation deal with the occupation, as well as the alleged meeting held by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, calling the latter a "liar".This came in an interview with CNN, in which Al-Faisal discussed the leaks of a supposed meeting that took place between the Saudi crown prince and Netanyahu, which Saudi Arabia has denied.He also talked about Saudi relations with the US, especially with the imminent change in the White House.


Saudi Arabia cancels Mossad leader's visit: report

Saudi Arabia has abruptly cancelled the visit of an Israeli official last week, presumed to be the Mossad head. This came after Israel disclosed information about the secret meeting between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, in the presence of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Neom, less than two weeks ago.Yedioth Ahronoth quoted sources stating that the official, whose visit to Saudi Arabia had been cancelled, is Head of Mossad Yossi Cohen, and is considered a key figure in relations between the two sides: "Which makes the cancellation of the invitation a very important event."The newspaper revealed that the revocation of the visit came after Netanyahu boasted about his meeting with Bin Salman in Saudi Arabia, just days before the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh on 27 November.



Israel asks its nuclear scientists to be cautious following Fakhrizadeh assassination

Following the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, Israeli security services have asked senior ex-nuclear scientists to take extra security measures throughout their daily lives, Israeli media reported .Times of Israel reported Israeli public broadcaster Kan stating that the warning was given to the Israeli nuclear scientists who worked at Israel's Dimona nuclear reactor, fearing that they could be targeted in revenge for the assassination of Fakhrizadeh.Israeli media disclosed that this warning was issued following the public blame by Iranian officials towards Israel regarding the assassination of the Iranian nuclear scientist, as well as their pledge to take revenge for the assassination.



Dozens of Israelis arrested at anti-Netanyahu protest

At least 30 people have been arrested in demonstrations against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israeli media reported.Police on Saturday said thousands of protesters gathered in Paris Square near Netanyahu’s residence in West Jerusalem and caused the closure of roads as well as public unrest.


BDS slams Bahrain's recognition of Israel settlement goods

 Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement on Friday slammed Bahrain's recognition of settlement goods as "war crimes", Quds Press reported.Bahrain's Commerce and Tourism Minister Zayed Al-Zayani announced that his country would not boycott the products of Israeli settlements built on Palestinian lands, and would deal with them in a similar manner to which it deals with products made in Israel.BDS Coordinator Mahmoud Nawajaa expressed in response: "This is a flagrant deviation from the Arab and Islamic stance and makes Bahrain, according to international law, involved in Israeli crimes."


Former Israel minister describes nation-state law as 'self-incrimination of Israel'

Former Israeli Justice Minister Yossi Beilin has described the Israeli nation-state law as "self-incrimination of Israel" and "contrary to everything that Judaism represents."In an article published by the Israeli newspaper Israel Hayom, Beilin said that the nation-state law: "Provides a reference to repeated claims by its [Israel's] enemies… [It] is a ringing slap in the face to anyone who supports Israel in the world."Beilin wrote his article after the Israeli Senior Registrar Yaniv Luzon at Krayot Magistrate's Court rejected a petition filed by children in the Israeli town of Karmiel, who sought reimbursement for their bus fares to Arab schools outside the town which has no Arab schools.Luzon of the Israeli Krayot Magistrate's Court cited the nation-state law as grounds to reject the petition filed by the two Arab siblings.


Palestinian Journalists Syndicate calls for boycotting Israel media

Palestinian Journalists Syndicate (PJS) called for Palestinian journalists to boycott Israeli mass media following "distorted" reports about Palestinians broadcast by Israeli Channel 13.In a statement posted on its Facebook page, the PJS called for Palestinians to take their role in preventing "such dangerous distortions".The PJS said that it had repeatedly called for boycotting Israeli media and Israeli reporters, who enter the Palestinian territories as "occupiers" and "under the protection of the Israeli occupation forces".According to the PJS statement: "Any treatment or meeting with the Israeli media, or offering logistic assistance for them during their entry to the Palestinian territories are considered a normalisation crime which is nationally and popularly rejected."



Dozens arrested at French police law protests

Scores of protesters have been arrested and dozens of police officers injured during the violent demonstrations against a controversial security bill and police brutality in France. Police arrested 95 people during protests and 67 officers were injured during the demonstrations, Interior Minister Gerard Darmanin said on Sunday. In Paris, the site of the worst violence, 48 police officers or gendarmes were injured during Saturday's violent street clashes.A firefighter was also injured in the capital after being hit by a projectile, a police source said.Paris police held 25 people, including two minors, said the prosecutors' office.It was the second straight weekend France has seen demonstrations against ongoing violence by police and new legislation forbidding disseminating images of police taken while on duty.The security bill is currently going through the French Parliament.



Foreign Ministry: Turkey to never compromise its sovereign rights in E.Med

Turkey will not compromise its sovereign rights on the island of Meis, or airspace covering 10 nautical miles, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said on Saturday according to a report by Anadolu Agency."No sanctions will ever make Turkey compromise its sovereign rights be in Meis/Kastellorizo or 10 nm airspace," the ministry said on Twitter in response to Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias' article against Turkey. The ministry noted that Greece, "the spoiled child of Europe", aims to provoke EU sanctions on Turkey based on its "maximalist, illegitimate maritime boundary, and airspace claims".


Sheikh Hasina Welcomes Pak Envoy to Residence in Yet Another Sign of Thaw in Frosty Relations

New Delhi: In yet another signal that the frosty relations between Dhaka and Islamabad could be thawing, Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina welcomed Pakistan high commissioner Imran Ahmed Siddiqui to her official residence on Thursday. Though a press release issued by her office quoted Hasina as saying that her country cannot forget the “atrocities” committed by Pakistan during the 1971 war, she was also positive about regional cooperation and smoothening out diplomatic relations.The two South Asian countries have traditionally not shared close diplomatic relations. The relationship took a “nosedive” during Hasina’s second tenure as prime minister in 2009, when she began focusing on trials for war crimes during the 1971 war which saw the formation of Bangladesh.In 2016, Bangladesh executed several leaders of the Jamaat-e-Islami party on charges of committing war crimes in 1971. This led to ties with Islamabad falling to a new low, with Pakistan describing the executions and trials “politically motivated”.On Thursday, Hasins extended greetings to her counterpart Imran Khan after high commissioner Siddiqui conveyed the “good wishes” of the Pakistani PM. The high commissioner said Khan had advised his representatives in Dhaka to learn about the “development miracle” of Bangladesh.


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