Not just beef-eaters, Karnataka’s anti-cattle slaughter bill will hit farmers, tanners and more
Bengaluru :Earlier this month, BJP government in Karnataka passed the controversial Karnataka Prevention of Slaughter and Preservation of Cattle Bill, 2020. The bill, which replaces the less-stringent 1964 cow protection legislation that prohibited slaughter of cows in the state, bans the slaughter of cattle, whose definition it has expanded to include “cow, calf of a cow and bull, bullock and he or she buffalo”. The bill, when implemented, will mean a blanket ban on beef in the southern state.The anti-cow slaughter legislation, which was passed amid loud protests by the Opposition, does not only have harsh provisions — 3-7 years of jail or/and steep fines up to Rs 5 lakh, and sweeping powers to the police — it is also set to have far-reaching adverse economic implications on dairy farmers who are already facing agrarian distress. Industries like leather and hotels are also going to take a huge hit. Butchers in Shivajinagar beef market in central Bengaluru, which is one of the largest beef markets in the city, are worried. The market supplies meat across the city, from smaller hotels to star hotels, besides getting hundreds of customers who buy fresh meat every day.
BJP & RSS ‘trying to finish Sikh race’, wrote Sikh preacher before suicide at Singhu border
Sant Baba Ram Singh, the Sikh preacher who allegedly committed suicide at the farmer protests outside Delhi, had purportedly written a letter prior to his suicide note that has been recovered from the Nanaksar Thath Gurdwara in Karnal, Haryana, which he headed. In the letter, Singh is said to have vociferously attacked the BJP and the RSS not only for the plight of the agitating farmers, but for trying to “finish the entire Sikh community and the Sikh race”. He called RSS a “snake winding itself around the Sikh community”, The Print has reported. Sonepat’s Senior Superintendent of Police J.S. Randhawa confirmed the recovery of the letter mentioned in the suicide note. SSP Randhawa said of the letter: “The suicide note was one page long, while this letter is about 10 pages long. The suicide note was written on 16 December but this was written on 14 December.”An associate of the deceased preacher read out the letter at the preacher’s funeral: “RSS has resolved to end the Sikh community and the Sikh race. Sikh community has always been under attack and is still being attacked. Some Sikhs themselves have become their sycophants. It is a shame that they are working for RSS — some for the sake of power, some for the sake of money, and others by force. RSS is winding itself around the Sikhs like a snake.”
Repeal ‘fundamentally harmful’ farm laws, 10 economists tell Modi government amid deadlock
Amid the continuing standoff between farmers’ groups and the central government over the farm laws, 10 economists from India’s most reputed research institutions on Thursday wrote a letter to Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar against the reforms, Indian Express reported. They have demanded that the Centre immediately repeal the laws.The economists who wrote the letter include Professors D Narasimha Reddy (retired), formerly of the University of Hyderabad; Kamal Nayan Kabra (retired), formerly of the Indian Institute of Public Administration and the Institute of Social Sciences, New Delhi; KN Harilal from the Centre for Development Studies, Thiruvananthapuram, and member of the Kerala State Planning Board; and R Ramakumar from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai.The economists, who have for long engaged with agricultural policy matters, said that the three laws were not in the best interests of small and marginal farmers, calling it “fundamentally harmful” in their implications.
‘Love jihad’: Allahabad HC stays arrest of man under UP anti-conversion law, cites right to privacy
Allahabad High Court on Friday stayed the arrest of a person from Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar city under the state’s new anti-conversion law, reported Indian Express. The court noted that the couple involved were adults with “a fundamental right to privacy”. Nadeem, 32, and his brother Salman, were named in a complaint filed in the matter by Akshay Kumar Tyagi, the woman’s husband, reported NDTV. They were among the first people to be booked under the new law. Tyagi accused Nadeem of wanting to marry his wife and coercing her to convert her religion. He alleged that Nadeem used to frequent his house, and had gifted his wife a smartphone to woo her. Following the complaint, Nadeem was booked under various charges, including Sections 3/5 of Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance, 2020. The law, which was passed last month by the Adityanath government, is aimed at tackling “love jihad” – a conspiracy theory espoused by right-wing Hindutva activists, alleging that Hindu women are forcibly converted by Muslims through marriage. While hearing the petition on Friday, a bench of Justices Pankaj Naqvi and Vivek Agarwal noted that the woman concerned was an adult “who understands her well-being”. The court also ordered against taking any coercive action against Nadeem till January 7, when the matter will next be heard.
‘Love jihad’: UP court orders release of Muslim man, his brother after police find no evidence
A court in Uttar Pradesh’s Moradabad district has ordered the release of two men arrested under the new anti-conversion law because the police did not find evidence against them, TOI reported.A Muslim man named Rashid Ali and his brother were arrested on December 4 after they went to the registrar’s office to make a record of the former’s marriage to a Hindu woman. Members of the right-wing group Bajrang Dal, who reached the marriage registration office and accosted the couple, had handed them over to the police. His pregnant wife, identified as Pinki, was sent to a shelter home in Moradabad district. An ultrasound examination confirmed that she had a miscarriage.
UP’s ‘love jihad’ law follows ideology of khap panchayat, must be struck down, says Justice AP Shah
Former Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court, AP Shah, on Friday said the new anti-conversion law in Uttar Pradesh was regressive in nature as it reflected the “philosophy of a khap panchayat”, and was aimed at perpetuating the subjugation of women, NDTV reported. The ordinance, Shah said, was capable of “great public mischief” and must be struck down immediately. In an interview to the channel, Shah expressed his disbelief that a law like this was passed by a government “in a country governed by the rule of law and a constitution”.The former judge noted that a version of the “love jihad” theory was floated by one UN Mukherjee, 100 years ago in a book, where he talked about the myth of the overbreeding Muslims, threatening to emerge as a majority community in India. Over the years, Mukherjee’s book, Hindus – a Dying Race, has emerged as an important propaganda material of the Hindu Mahasabha. “Hindu Mahasabha tried to gather support around the idea that Muslim men are waging jihad in India through love marriages,” Justice Shah said. “The women are warned against unsuitable outsiders, particularly those who are outside the religion or a lower caste. They were told that they should remain poor, that they might fit the role of the mothers of the nation.”
UP: Foreigner among 4 held in Greater Noida under anti-conversion law
4 persons, including three women, were arrested in Uttar Pradesh’s Greater Noida on Saturday for allegedly luring people into converting their religion, officials said.One of the arrested women is a South Korean national, who was staying on rent in Greater Noida, the police officials said.“Four people, including a foreign national, have been arrested here for provoking locals for religious conversion. They had lured and enticed local people for religious conversion in the past also,” Central Noida’s DCP Harish Chander said.PTI
Hathras Dalit Girl Case: CBI Chargesheet Indicates Girl Was Gangraped, Murdered By Upper Caste Men
NEW DELHI—The chargesheet filed on Friday by the Central Bureau of Investigation in gangrape and murder of a 19-year-old Dalit girl in Hathras has indicated that the accused had gangraped and murdered the girl.All the four accused-Sandeep, Luvkush, Ravi and Ramu-from the upper caste Thakur community are currently in jail.The CBI has charged them with gangrape and murder. The charges levelled against them are under Sections 354, 376A, 376D and 302 of Indian Penal Code and SC/ST Act.The girl was allegedly raped by the accused persons on September in Hathras. She was first taken to the Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College and Hospital of the Aligarh Muslim University and shifted to Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi where she died during treatment on September 29. The family had alleged that the police had hurriedly carried out the cremation of the body without their consent. But police had said that cremation was done as per wishes of the family.The incident had sparked protest at national level and also attracted international headlines.
Mangaluru Police Violence: A Year on, Muslim Victims Wait for Names to Be Dropped From FIRs
Mangaluru: “They did what they wanted to, they took away my husband’s life. Now all I hope for is to see my husband’s name cleared from the police FIR,” Sayeda says in Byari, a language spoken in the coastal town Manguluru. Her elder daughter Shifani translates for her.A year ago on this day, Sayeeda lost her husband, 49-year-old Abdul Jaleel, in police firing while he was on his way to offer Asr namaaz in a nearby mosque. He was shot in his eye and fell dead instantly. Jaleel, a worker at the fish market, was one of the two victims of police firing on December 19, 2019. The family has since maintained that he had nothing to do with the protest organised in the town that day and that the police have merely named him in the FIR only to cover their crime up. The police, however, have claimed they had resorted to firing only to disperse the “unruly crowd” that had allegedly turned violent. The protesters had gathered across Mangaluru town against the discriminatory Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA). In the direct aftermath of the violence, the state government had cut off internet in Dakshina Kannada district, for five days till December 23. The district was put under curfew. Locals had alleged that this situation was created to only cover up police atrocities.
Delhi: 5 police personnel, SDM find mention in court order acquitting 36 Tablighi Jamaat members
In its 65-page judgment acquitting 36 Tablighi Jamaat members earlier this week, a Delhi court named 5 police personnel as well as sub-divisional magistrate involved in the prosecution of foreigners who were booked for allegedly flouting Covid regulations in March. While the police personnel named in the judgment refused to comment, the Delhi Police PRO said police are “exploring legal options to challenge the acquittal”.Key observations made by Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Arun Kumar Garg: The main complainant in the case, inspector Mukesh Walia, SHO of Hazrat Nizamuddin police station, had deposed regarding the identification of the accused at Markaz Nizamuddin during his visits between March 12 and April 1. The court said Walia in his complaint and examination had stated that “the management of Markaz kept him as well as other authorities in the dark about the actual number of persons inside Markaz till completion of the evacuation exercise”. However, “during his cross- examination he had tried to improve upon his case alleging that during 12 March to 31 March, he had visited inside the Markaz (covering all floors) almost on a daily basis and found the accused violating the guidelines,” the court noted.
Rebel Trinamool Congress leader Suvendu Adhikari joins BJP during Amit Shah’s visit to Bengal
Suvendu Adhikari, who was among the most prominent Trinamool Congress leaders, on Saturday joined BJP in the presence of Union Home Minister Amit Shah. At a mega rally in Midnapore district, Shah welcomed Adhikari into the saffron party and took a swipe at West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. Besides Adhikari, 6 MLAs of the Trinamool Congress, one each from CPI(Marxist), CPIand the Congress also joined the BJP, according to PTI. 2-time TMC MP from Bardhaman Purba Lok Sabha constituency Sunil Mondal also defected to the BJP.
Kejriwal claims Rs 2,500 crore scam in Delhi civic bodies bigger than Commonwealth Games one
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday said the alleged scam of Rs 2,500-crore in the Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled municipal corporations was larger than the Commonwealth Games one, reported PTI.“It’s a very painful day as we are discussing the biggest scam in MCD,” Kejriwal said during a special session of the Delhi Assembly. “Rs 2,500 crore scam is bigger than the Commonwealth Games scam. Even people on the street say there is corruption in MCD and the same people say the Delhi government is honest.”
Pakistan claims India is planning surgical strike against it, seeking approval from other countries
Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Friday claimed that India was planning a surgical strike on the country, reported HT.“I have learned through our intelligence sources and they have picked up this information that India is planning a surgical strike against Pakistan,” Qureshi said, while addressing a press conference at Abu Dhabi in UAE. He, however, did not share any details about his source of information or the potential attack. He also alleged that India was seeking “tacit approval” from other countries for the operation. “This is a serious development and I also have knowledge that they have tried to seek tacit approval from important players who they consider to be their partners,” Al Jazeera quoted Qureshi as saying.
ED attaches Rs 11.86 cr assets of Farooq Abdullah, others in JKCA money laundering case
ED has attached assets worth Rs 11.86 crore of former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah and others in connection with its money laundering probe linked to alleged financial irregularities in Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association, official sources said on Saturday.They said the agency has issued a provisional attachment order under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act and the attached properties are located in Jammu and Srinagar.Two immovable assets are residential, one is a commercial property while three other plots of land have also been attached by the Enforcement Directorate, they said.PTI
PM-Cares Fund received Rs 203.67 crore from salaries of Armed Forces: Report
The 3 armed forces of India – the army, navy and the air force – have contributed Rs 203.67 crore from the salaries of their personnel to the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations, or PM Cares, Fund, Indian Express reported on Friday, citing records accessed under RTI. PM-Cares is a fund set up by the Centre with the stated objective of being a “dedicated national fund” to deal with “any kind of emergency or distress situation”. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the fund’s chairperson and senior Cabinet members serve as trustees. Ever since its launch on March 27, to provide relief from the countrywide lockdown imposed to contain the spread of the coronavirus, donations began pouring in and haven’t stopped. Indian Air Force, in an RTI response dated November 25, said that it contributed a total of Rs 29.18 crore between April and October to the fund. The donations were made “by IAF personnel”, it said.
Karnataka removes passages ‘hurting Brahmin sentiments’ from Class 6 textbook
Karnataka government has deleted certain paragraphs on the Brahmin community from the social science curriculum of Class 6, after the head of a mutt objected to the content, saying it was hurtful to their religious sentiments, PTI reported. Primary and Secondary Education Minister S Suresh Kumar issued an order to the Commissioner for Public Instruction to drop the passages.Kumar also announced that he would undertake a comprehensive review of school textbooks from Class 1 to Class 10 to see if the chapters contained any other “offensive” references to a particular community. For this, a committee will be constituted comprising teachers and subject-experts, who will submit a report in 15 days to the state government recommending appropriate action.
RSS ideologue M G Vaidya dead
Senior RSS ideologue and the first spokesperson of the organization Madhav Govind Vaidya died in Nagpur on Saturday afternoon, his family said.He was 97.ishnu Vaidya, his grandson, told PTI that he died at a private hospital at 3.35 pm.“He had contracted coronavirus but recovered from the infection,” Vishnu Vaidya said, adding that his health deteriorated suddenly on Friday.PTI
Centre’s Covid FAQs: Vaccine advised even for those recovered
THOSE WHO have recovered from Covid are advised to get a vaccine shot to develop strong immunity; those who have tested positive should defer vaccination for 14 days after symptoms are resolved; all beneficiaries have to register officially for vaccination; and, the vaccine will not be administered to those who don’t produce a photo ID at the site.With one of the world’s largest immunisation drives against Covid set to roll out in India early next year, these are the Union Health Ministry’s answers to some key questions on the administration of the vaccine among 21 FAQs compiled for the public, and an additional six for healthcare providers and frontline workers.The Government expects to vaccinate approximately 30 crore beneficiaries on priority in the early phase. And for the first time, multiple vaccine candidates will be administered against one infection. “…all the COVID-19 vaccines that receive license will have comparable safety and efficacy. However, it must be ensured that the entire schedule of vaccination is completed by only one type of vaccine as different COVID-19 vaccines are not interchangeable,” the Ministry said.
Coronavirus vaccination is voluntary, says health ministry in new document
Union health ministry has said that getting a vaccine against the coronavirus in India will be voluntary and released a document to answer frequently asked questions about the massive immunisation programme.Experts said that vaccinating a billion people, including hundreds of millions of adults for the first time, against Covid-19 would be a daunting task in the first tranche. “Vaccination for Covid-19 is voluntary,” the eight-page document said. “However, it is advisable to receive the complete schedule of Covid-19 vaccine for protecting oneself against this disease and also to limit the spread of this disease to the close contacts including family members, friends, relatives and co-workers.”
Coronavirus vaccines can turn people into crocodiles, women may grow beard: Brazilian President
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has suggested that the Pfizer-BioNTech shot could turn people into crocodiles or result in women growing a beard, reported AFP. “If you turn into a crocodile, it’s your problem,” Bolsonaro said, referring to Pfizer’s disclaimer that the company was not responsible for side effects. “If you become superhuman, if a woman starts to grow a beard or if a man starts to speak with an effeminate voice, they will not have anything to do with it.”On Wednesday, after launching the country’s immunisation campaign, Bolsonaro said the vaccines would be free but not compulsory. However, the country’s Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that the vaccine was obligatory, although it could not be forced on people. Bolsonaro, however, maintained that he will not get vaccinated.
Covid-19: US clears Moderna vaccine for emergency use, to get nearly 2 crore doses by end of year
US on Friday authorised Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine for emergency use in the country, US Food and Drug Administration announced. The authorisation came a day after the body’s advisory panel had recommended its use. This makes Moderna’s shot the second vaccine after that of Pfizer-BioNTech to receive such an authorisation in US in a week’s time. “The data also show that the vaccine’s known and potential benefits outweigh its known and potential risks – supporting the company’s request for an EUA [emergency use authorisation] to allow for the vaccine to be distributed in the US for use in people 18 years of age and older,” the Food and Drug Administration said on Twitter.
Saudi sacks 100 Islamic preachers for failing to condemn Muslim Brotherhood
The Saudi government has sacked 100 Islamic imams and preachers who gave sermons in mosques in Makkah and Al-Qassim because they failed to condemn the Muslim Brotherhood as instructed, Al-Watan newspaper reported.The Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Dawah, and Guidance issued instructions for all imams and preachers to criticise the Muslim Brotherhood and blame them for causing differences and divisions within society.Last month, the ministry ordered preachers to dedicate the Friday sermon to supporting a controversial statement issued by the Saudi Council of Senior Scholars in which the council described the group as a "terrorist" organisation that does not represent Islam's true teachings but rather serves its partisan interests.In the 1950s, Saudi Arabia gave shelter to thousands of Brotherhood activists facing jail and repression in Egypt, Syria and elsewhere. The Brotherhood soon gained influence in the kingdom.
'Sisi asked us to recognise regime in 2016,' claims Brotherhood official
The deputy general guide of the Muslim Brotherhood has revealed that the Egyptian regime of Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi attempted to initiate a dialogue with the movement in 2016, Arabic Post has reported. "He tried to communicate with us between 2015 and 2016," explained Ibrahim Mounir, "when he was asking us to recognise his legitimacy."Mounir was speaking in exile in the run up to the 10th anniversary of the January 2011 Revolution in Egypt that toppled President Hosni Mubarak. He set out five conditions for dialogue to end the political crisis in the country: the release of political detainees; the restoring of all rights (which he did not specify); the army's return to its natural role in protecting the state and its borders, and not interfering in politics; holding all who have committed crimes against the people to account; and enabling the Egyptians to choose who governs them through democratic elections. The movement, he added, is ready to form an alliance with those who agree on the principle of not recognising the existing regime, preserving the peaceful nature of the revolution, respecting political and ideological diversity, and respecting the popular will. Sisi, said Mounir, believes that the Muslim Brotherhood is a threat to Egypt and wants to keep it excluded from politics."Egyptian regime is the one which wanted this to be a zero-sum game, beginning with the coup and subsequent massacres, passing through arrests, unfair trials, executions and the seizure of property," he said. "Sisi says that he will not be able to reconcile with those who want to destroy the country, by which he means the Brotherhood."Mounir denied that the group had made a deal with the regimes of Mubarak and former President Anwar Sadat. The latter, of course, was involved in the trial that ruled on 4 December 1954 to execute six Muslim Brotherhood leaders.
EU Parliament calls for action over Egypt’s human rights abuses
European Parliament has passed a resolution urging member states to consider imposing targeted restrictions against Egypt for its crackdown on human rights activists.EU politicians stressed a “unified and resolute” response against Egypt’s actions to silence activists, while using “all tools at their disposal” to secure concrete progress in the country’s human rights record.“Parliament deplores, once again and in the strongest possible terms, the continued and intensifying crackdown on fundamental rights and, among others, the persecution of human rights defenders, lawyers and civil society in Egypt,” read the resolution adopted on Friday.The document – approved with 434 votes in favour, 49 against and 202 abstentions – also stressed the necessity of a “profound and comprehensive” review of the EU’s relations with Egypt, including a revision of the commission’s budget support operations.
Yemen's president, separatists announce new power-sharing government
Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen announced on Friday a new power-sharing cabinet that would include southern separatists in the internationally-recognised government, part of a deal to end a power struggle between the nominal allies, Reuters reports.The government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, based in the southern port of Aden, and the separatists are allies within the coalition, which has been at war against the Iran-aligned Houthis that have controlled the capital Sanaa since 2014.However, the separatist Southern Transitional Council (STC) declared self rule in Aden earlier this year, and the two sides have been fighting in the south, complicating UN efforts to forge a permanent ceasefire in the overall conflict.
Sudan marks 2nd anniversary of anti-Bashir uprising
Head of Sudan's Sovereign Council, Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, pledged to protect gains of the Sudanese revolution, as the country marks the second anniversary of protests that led to the ouster of former President Omar Al-Bashir, Anadolu Agency reports."On this anniversary, we renew our pledge that the armed forces will remain the guarantor and protector of the revolution and its gains," Al-Burhan said on Twitter.Al-Bashir was removed from power by the military after mass protests against his three-decade rule.Protests are expected in different cities on Saturday to mark the second anniversary of the uprising, amid calls for bringing former regime officials to justice and accelerating the formation of a new parliament.
Turkey is not afraid of US sanctions: Vice President
Turkey is not afraid of the US's unilateral sanctions, the country's vice president said on Friday, Anadolu Agency reports."As always, we will continue to be on the side of common sense, in line with the interests of our nation. We are not afraid of [US's unilateral] sanction. Turkey does not [need] to be discouraged by any sanction," Fuat Oktay told the lawmakers in his closing speech while debating the 2021 budget in the parliament.Oktay called on US to gain Turkey's friendship instead of imposing sanctions."Every country that excludes Turkey will have less room for action in the region," he said while condemning the "unfair sanction decision".Oktay underlined that the Turkish parliament showed a strong will against the sanctions.
Turkey group seeks probe into Uyghur activist's death
Turkey's Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH) said on Friday that it has approached UN Human Rights Council over the death of Uyghur human rights defender in China and has sought the safety of his wife and children, Anadolu Agency reports.Tursun Kaliolla, an Uyghur living in China was taken into custody after he had written a petition to the government of China regarding unlawful arrests in the Eastern Turkistan region. IHH, in its application, alleged that the activist was murdered at a security camp.
Stuck in Guantanamo for 12 years, Afghan inmate’s health at risk
Muhammad Rahim has been confined to the notorious Guantanamo Bay prison for the last 12 years without charge. But now his lawyer and a rights body fear the Afghan is facing a potentially serious health risk.A medical examination carried out by Guantanamo’s Joint Task Force (JTF) in 2017 and on subsequent unknown dates have uncovered several “nodules” in his lung, liver, kidney and rib, raising fears of cancer.Since a biopsy is yet to be done and, as per a medical provider at the detention centre, Rahim needs an MRI test as well, it remains unknown whether the lumps are malignant.The Guantanamo authorities agreed to facilitate the MRI examination, but the offer was reneged later.Rahim’s military lawyer, Major James Valentine, has unsuccessfully pushed for the release of his medical file, but the US regards the information as classified.
Sri Lankan Muslims Incensed Over Forced Cremation of Muslim Covid Victims
COLOMBO, SRI LANKA—Muslims in Sri Lanka are outraged over the forced cremation of a 20-day-old COVID-19 victim last week against the family’s wishes, the latest in more than a dozen such cremations in the Buddhist-majority country since the pandemic erupted.Ignoring WHO guidelines which permit both burials and cremations, Sri Lanka in March made cremation mandatory for people who die or are suspected to have died from the coronavirus infection.On December 9, baby Shaykh was forcibly cremated in a cemetery in Borella, the largest suburb of Sri Lanka’s capital, Colombo – the youngest among 15 Muslims to be cremated, thereby denying them Islamic funeral rites.Shaykh’s father MFM Fahim told Al Jazeera he could not gather the courage to witness the burning of his infant son’s body.“I told them that I cannot go into a place where they are burning my baby. My friends and family asked the authorities how they can go ahead with the cremation when neither of the parents had signed any document giving consent,” Fahim told Al Jazeera.
Israel's war against European aid for Palestinians: Asa Winstanley
Modi is popular, BJP keeps winning, but India’s indicators & global rankings are alarming:SHEKHAR GUPTA