Sunday, 19 March 2017

Evening NEWS DIGEST
19 March. 2017: 19 Jamadiul Akhir 1438: Vol:8, No:145
Adityanath's elevation: ‘Hindu Rashtra’, or BJP-RSS Tussle?TheQuint
 There are two ways to view BJP’s stunning decision to appoint Yogi Adityanath as CM of UP and back him with 2 deputy CM s – including Keshav Prasad Maurya, whose political grooming was in the VHP and Bajrang Dal. The first is to read the decision as signal to people that the BJP and the Narendra Modi-Amit Shah duo backed by the Sangh Parivar in its entirety, have interpreted the verdict as endorsement of majoritarian politics and not just a majority mandate. Despite the sidelining of the Yogi in the early stages of the campaign and Hindu Yuva Vahni – his social outfit – fielding candidates, his appointment is perhaps the bluntest message that could be delivered to supporters and detractors alike. The singular construal of this decision is that construction of the Ram temple is now inevitable, subject to BJP drawing a legislative plan and timeline.Reading the development on these lines, one cannot escape the conclusion that it is part of a diabolical plan to maximise Hindu consolidation in favour of the party. Diehard critics of Modi would also conclude that the appointment is just another instance of the idiom ‘a tiger never changes its stripes’. The Yogi being stationed in Lucknow indicates that the PM, after successfully forging Hindu consolidation in favour of the party, decided not to rest his oars and has chosen to continue this process ahead of 2019 in hopes of maximising gains. The second view is more rounded and begins with the presumption that the decision-making process within the Sangh Parivar is not linear and not all decisions are taken singlehandedly by the Modi-Shah duo. Without entering into details on reports that RSS pressured Modi into appointing the Yogi in place of Manoj Sinha, who was reportedly his first choice, the decision has to be viewed as a complete matrix, and its impact requires assessment.Quite clearly, when first indications of the decision began trickling in on television channels in the afternoon of Saturday, the entire cadre of the Sangh Parivar was caught by surprise. Modi after all, despite resorting to language aimed to further communal polarisation, had steered clear of Yogis, Sadhvisand Swamis (Maharaj too) for more than 2 years. Why, then, did he opt for Adityanath, clearly the most vituperative face of the aggressive Hindu lobby within the BJP?Firstly, with identity politics a major factor in the state and given BJP’s success in forging a correct caste formula, the caste identity of the CM was important. On this aspect, Adityanath fits the bill because he is originally a Rajput, caste which turned out for the BJP. With Maurya from the non-dominant (read non-Yadav) section of OBCs, and Dinesh Sharma a Brahmin, BJP has given representation at the top to major castes that backed it. The only other significant caste block that lost out, is the non-Jatav or Most Backward Dalits. But, this is not the first time that the scheduled castes have been denied top posts! Adityanath’s appointment has generated another round of euphoria in the Sangh Parivar cadre, the second after the runaway mandate. This is indicative of its primary agenda, because the Yogi is a Hindutva icon and not known as an advocate for development. This marks a moment of realisation for Modi – while his power comes significantly due to tactics that polarise and remains the popular draw, his place in history will be judged by the quality of governance.
Yogi’s elevation a sign Modi is moving toward Hindu India
A saffron-robed Hindu holy man was sworn in on Sunday to lead UP, sealing what appears to be a shift in course by PM Narendra Modi that could redefine world's largest democracy as a Hindu nation. The choice as UP  CM  of Yogi Adityanath, a firebrand Hindu ascetic with a history of agitation against minority Muslims, stunned observers who said it marked a departure from the platform of development for all on which Modi rose to national power in 2014. "Modi is saying India is a Hindu country and shall remain so," veteran journalist and commentator Shekhar Gupta said. "Modi and the BJP had promised the poor of India good times to come," said Paranjoy Guha Thakurta, editor of EPW. "When they fail to create jobs, revive the economy or lift investment, they are going to fall back more on the majoritarian agenda." Omar Abdullah, said in a tweet that Muslims in UP "must be terrified of what the future has in store for them." Reuters
Hinduism is not India, big assault on secularism: Oppn trashes Yogi as UP CM
New Delhi: Criticising Yogi Adityanath's selection by BJP as CM of UP, senior Congress leader Veerappa Moily on Saturday said it is a "big assault" on secularism, but his party said it will act as a watchdog of people's interests."It is a big assault on secularism in the country. Maybe, the BJP or RSS would like to endorse their cause of Hinduism. India is not Hinduism. Hinduism is not India," Moily pointed out.Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said, "Congress Party will continue to act as a watchdog of people's interests and play a constructive role in progress of state of UP".In tweet, former Union Minister Khurshid said, "No more pretence! Yogi Adityanath to sit where Pantji, NDT, Bahugana et al once sat. Great test PM has put BJP trolls to. Explain this. (sic)".Another former Union Minister Rajiv Shukla said, "There is a question mark on whether Yogi Adityanath will fulfil the three issues of good governance, development and taking everybody along. This will also be a challenge for him and one wonders how he will be able to deliver on these fronts. He will have to find a solution."Another Congress spokesperson Priyanka Chaturvedi said, "Congratulations UP! Hello media the man you called 'fringe' is now mainstream!."ASIAN AGE
Yogi Adityanath becoming UP CM is mockery of PM Modi’s call for inclusive growth: CPI(M)
New Delhi:Strongly condemning the BJP’s decision to appoint Yogi Adityanath as the CM  of UP , the CPI(M) on Sunday said the move is shocking and will bodes ill for the state. “Yogi Adityanath becoming the CM of UP is a mockery of PM  Narendra Modi’s call for inclusive growth,” CPI-M said. “The appointment of Yogi Adityanath as the CM of UP  is a shocking decision by the BJP. This choice by the RSS, executed by its political arm, the BJP, is a deliberate move which bodes ill for the state,” CPI (M) said. Indianexpress
Muslims shouldn't lose heart, should face it with courage: Jamaat-e-Islami Hind head over Assembly election results
New Delhi: India's largest socio-religious Muslim organization has appealed to Muslims in the country, especially those living in UP, not to lose heart and hope over the recent Assembly election results. "Rrecent Assembly election results are surprising and Muslims' concern over the outcomes is natural in view of the anti-Muslim policies of BJP. It is indeed a tough time, but Muslims should face it with courage," said Maulana Syed Jalaluddin Umari, President, Jamaat-e-Islami Hind here on Saturday hours after Yogi Adityanath was elected CM of UP. "There can be many reasons for this situation. Unity is required to achieve any goal and also there is a gap between Muslims and other communities which sometimes create doubts and issues among them. It should be our prime responsibility to bridge such gapes for better understanding and communication," said Maulana Umari. "We are citizens of this country, and we have rights and freedoms like others and we should use them. Like others we should be ready to face all types of situations here," he said.Maulan Umari said that BJP won in UP mainly because of division of non-BJP votes but he also said that BJP has worked hard for the last 70-80 years and it has not got success overnight.IndiaTomorrow
Kharge criticises BJP’s choice of Yogi as UP CM
Muslim community disappointed with PM Modi for choosing Yogi Adityanath as UP CM: Maulana Rashidi
New Delhi:Expressing deep disappointment over the BJP’s decision to elect their firebrand leader Yogi Adityanath’s as CM  of UP, Muslim Cleric Maulana Mohammad Sajid Rashidi questioned the saffron party that how can a man with a history of propagating divisive agenda lead PM  Narendra Modi’s development plans for the state. Speaking to ANI, the cleric said, “I am deeply disappointed with BJP’s selection and I don’t understand how a man who is charged with attempt to murder, a person who propagates divisive agenda, can be face of UP  CM .”Citing Adityanath’s recent hate speeches against Muslims, the Maulana further said that at least 13% of Muslims voted for the BJP in the state assembly polls believing in PM  Narendra Modi’s development agenda for UP , but now they are deeply disappointed with latter’s selection.ANI
Indian Minorities Front protests against Yogi’s candidature
Lucknow:Protesting against Mahant Yogi Adityanath's appointment as UP CM, Waliullah Engineer, president of the Bahujan Awam Party, a small outfit in East UP's Bhadohi district, has written to President Pranab Mukherjee, asking him to intervene and put a stop to Yogi's swearing in ceremony on Sunday. In a one-page letter to the President on behalf of the Indian Minorities Front, Engineer has said alleged statements by Yogi—on how Muslim women's bodies should be pulled out of their graves and raped—are comments unbecoming of a person about to occupy the CM 's office. He said, "If these statements were, indeed, made by Yogi Adityanath, his appointment the constituional post of CM will not only be against humanity, but also against the Indian constitution and the laws of the UN." Timesofindia
Mohsin Raza lone Muslim face in Yogi cabinet
New Delhi:BJP hadn’t fielded any Muslim candidate in UP  Assembly polls 2017, a move which attracted barrage of criticism from opposition that party discriminated with a community which comprises state’s 20% population. On Sunday, as Yogi Adityanath took oath as 21st CM of UP, everyone thought that cabinet this time won’t have any Muslim face. However, much to everyone’s surprize, the list included one Muslim face – Mohsin Raza, retired cricketer who recently joined BJP. 40-year-old Raza was appointed party’s spokesperson in the state. However, his appointment has surprised many. Raza’s appointment was quite inevitable as there are several departments in UP which can only be run by a Muslim candidate. Raza is likely to be given the charge of Minority Affairs Ministry. financialexpress
RSS, VHP hand behind Yogi’s crowning:HT report
RSS red flag spoiled Manoj Sinha’s chances of becoming UP  CM :HT
Building Ram temple tops Adityanath’s wish list: Shashi Skekhar, editorinchief, Hindustan
We will work without discrimination, says Yogi Adityanath
Adityanath as UP CM: It’s Bait and Switch as BJP Foists Hindutva In Place of Vikas:The Wire
Hindutva vs Hinduism: Adityanath's appointment shows BJP has little faith in its development plank:Ajaz Ashraf
Adityanath selection exposes limits of Modi's power: Jyoti Malhotra
Yogi sworn in as UP CM, gets 2 deputies, 47 ministers
For state leader, Modi taps firebrand politician who once advocated killing Muslims: Washington post
Bihar BJP to adopt UP model to wean away Muslims from grand alliance
Patna:Following the party’s landslide victory in the assembly elections in UP , where Muslims have a significant presence, the Bihar unit of the BJP is working on a strategy to attract a large chunk of Muslims by focusing on progressive women and poor members of the community. Keeping in view the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the saffron party in the state claimed to have put in place advance planning to reach out to Muslims, particularly women and the poor with progressive ideas. During the Nov.2015 Bihar assembly elections, in which the BJP could win just 53 out of total 243 seats, to 178 won by RJD-JD (U)-Congress ‘grand alliance’, Muslims were believed to have voted largely for the GA.Revealing the party’s new strategy, Bihar BJP president Nityanand Rai told HT on Saturday, “We will follow our party’s UP model, which largely succeeded in weaning away ‘progressive’ women and poor people of the community from BSP and the SP-Congress combine.”HT
Triple talaq-hit women voted for BJP in UP: Prasad
Gandhinagar: Muslim women "affected by the triple talaq practice voted for the BJP in good numbers" during the recent UP  assembly polls,claimed Union Minister for Law and Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad on Saturday."In UP , the women who have been affected due to the practice of triple talaq, voted for the BJP in good numbers. The state has the highest number of victims of this practice," said Prasad, who was here for the 8th Convocation of Gujarat National Law University."It is unfortunate that Mayawati, Akhilesh Yadav's wife Dimple or Priyanka Gandhi are silent on the issue," he said.Prasad said the central govt  has placed before the Supreme Court a strong argument against triple talaq, as the practice is "not an issue of religion, but of gender justice, gender equality and gender dignity." "The matter (of triple talaq) is pending in the Supreme Court. It is not an issue of religion, but of gender justice, gender equality and gender dignity," he said."We perform worship, but any wrong practice like untouchability can't become part of the prayer, because it is against the Constitution. Not discriminating against women is also the part of the Constitution,"he said.TOI
Ban triple talaq, group of Muslim women lawyers, activists urges PM Modi:India Today
A grand Ram temple will be built, constitutionally: Prasad
Ahmedabad: Union law and justice minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad said here on Saturday that "a grand Ram temple will be built in Ayodhya, constitutionally"."The Lucknow bench of Allahabad high court has already given its verdict that Ram Lalla (Lord Ram) was born at the same place where Ram Lalla resides at present. The bench also considered that the other side had failed to prove the existence of Babri mosque. The case is pending in the Supreme Court," he said."The constitutional ways are in favour of the Ram temple. After the SC verdict, a grand Ram temple will be built (in Ayodhya) as per constitutional way," Prasad said on being asked when the Ram temple will be built. timesofindia
Paswan favours legal solution to Ayodhya temple issue
Patna: Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan today said the vexed issue of construction of Ram Temple at Ayodhya should be resolved legally. "The Ayodhya issue must be resolved through a court verdict," the Union Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Minister told reporters.  "Even PM  Narendra Modi did not speak on contentious issues like Ram Temple at Ayodhya and scrapping of Article 370 of the Constitution conferring special status to Jammu and Kashmir and instead sought votes in the name of development and eradication of corruption during electioneering in UP and other states," Paswan said at a press conference. PTI
BJP's Victory in UP a Lesson for Those Who Cheated Muslims for 70 years: Owaisi
Kishanganj: AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi said that BJP's victory in UP  is a big lesson for those who 'cheated' Muslims for past 70 years.Talking to reporters at party office here after touring Kishanganj, Owaisi questioned those who charged him and his party for helping BJP in elections and said "I want to ask those who give lectures on secularism that why secular forces were defeated in Uttarakhand and Odisha (in local bodies elections) where my party did not put up candidates".For parties which claim to fight for Muslims' cause, he said the Sachar committee report exposes the plight of Muslims for these parties.In reply to a query, Owaisi, who was accompanied by party's Bihar unit chief Akhtarul Iman and others, said that people would vote for his party one day. Stating that Seemanchal region is his second home, AIMIM chief said that he has not visited the area during poll time, rather he has always stood with the people of Seemanchal during floods or other disasters.news18
Letters for 2 years, SOS to PM, Election Commission still awaits EVM papertrail funds
New Delhi:IN A letter to PM  Narendra Modi 4 months ago, the Election Commission sought urgent release of funds to procure enough Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) machines to cover all polling stations ahead of the next Lok Sabha elections in 2019. The EC has sent over 10 reminders to the govt  on the matter, since June 2014, and the letter to Modi by Chief Election Commissioner Nasim Zaidi, on Oc. 25, 2016, was an SOS of sorts. CEC very rarely writes directly to the PM, with its communication to the govt on electoral matters normally limited to Law and Home ministries.Several parties, including BSP, SP and AAP, have raised doubts about tampering of EVMs following the UP  and Uttarakhand results.Before 2014 general pols, BJP had talked of EVM tampering on many occasions. VVPAT machines produce a printout of the vote cast using an EVM, which can be shown to the voter to dispel any doubts. This printout is then deposited in a box and can be used to resolve any dispute regarding the election. indianexpress
Muslims should open their minds to PM Modi:Haseeb Siddiqui, general manager of Muslim Fund Trust, Deoband
Deoband:Haseeb Siddiqui is general manager of the Muslim Fund Trust, Deoband, which is a financial institution that works on interest-free loan module adapted as per Quranic Shariah model. The locals, who across castes and communities avail the services of the Muslim Fund Trust, recognise Siddiqui as a social worker and spokesperson on Muslim issues. Popularly known as Abbaji, Siddiqui has actively participated in politics as a BSP member and now looks after the Trust full-time. In an interview, Siddiqui talked about why Muslims need to review their “political prejudices”.He said,"BJP won without nominating any Muslim candidate in UP. However, around 5-10% Muslims voted for the BJP and I don’t think there is any problem with this. Muslims in India should now be able to see who or what is betraying them. Many promises that have been made to us, have never been fulfilled. We have been told that BJP can never do any good for Muslims. This has become a mindset among Muslims. But Muslims should see how much truth there is in these statements. We need to introspect." "Muslims should give the BJP a chance. BJP eliminated any hope of getting Muslim votes from their election strategy and focused on the rest 70% of the population in the state. Yes, they did not try to woo us. But the majority chose them. If the people of the state chose them, we should open our minds too. No mainstream Muslim organisation has met Modi and spoken to him about the community’s issues and concerns. Somebody will have to take the initiative to start a dialogue if the country has to develop," he added. sundayguardianlive
OTHERS
Kerala: Wife falsely ‘implicates’ man as Islamic State agent
Kochi: A day after an UP native was taken into custody by the Ernakulam police for suspected IS (Islamic State) links, further probe has revealed that his wife had falsely lodged a complaint with the cops about his “terror links”. Aluva Police had taken into custody Ahlad aka Imran (25) on the basis of a complaint filed by his wife, Thrikkarippur native, that her husband had been working for the outlawed outfit.“We dispatched a team to UP  and took Ahlad into custody on his arrival at the Musafir Nagar railway station and brought him to Aluva late on Friday. However, we could find no evidence of him being linked to IS despite interrogating him for hours,” said KG Babu Kumar, DSP, Aluva.Primary probe revealed he had married the woman about 8 months ago. The woman had come to Aluva in search of Alhad and found him staying at a lodge here. Soon an argument broke out between the two following which Alhad allegedly beat up the woman. In a fit of rage, she filed a false complaint on his terror links.Deccan Chronicle.
Arrested youth has no IS links:The Hindu
Terror suspect held in Tripura: Habib Mia falsely implicated, says family
Agartala: Family of a terror suspect, who was picked up from Agartala by a team of the Karnataka police, alleged he had been falsely implicated in a 12-year-old case. Four members of the Anti-Terrorist Squad of Karnataka police brought one Habib Mia to Bengaluru on Saturday after gaining transit remand from a city court.Jharna Begam, spouse of the accused said, her husband, a plumber, was summoned to the East Agartala Police Station on Thursday for ‘verification of his mobile SIM card’. However, he was detained at the station in connection with a case registered in Bengaluru.The Tripura police, however, claimed that Habib Mia was arrested on ‘specific inputs’ provided by the Karnataka police on his role in a terrorist strike at the Indian Institute of Science at Sadashivnagar in Bengaluru on Dec.28, 2005.Family members claimed he had never gone out of Tripura and could not have committed the crime. The hindu
Threats, slurs, insults; It’s a hard life for lawyers defending terror suspects: HT spl report
Advocate R Mahadevan has relatives who won’t talk to him any more. They don’t understand why he represents ‘people who hate their country’. “I tried explaining the importance of a defence lawyer, but now I have just come to accept these things,” Mahadevan says.He is currently representing suspects in the Bangalore serial blasts case, when nine bombs exploded in the city in 2008, killing 2 and injuring 20.It’s not easy arguing for the damned. Threats of violence and death are common. Some lawyers find notes stuck on their cars, detailing the whereabouts of their children.And then there are the attacks from within their circle — friends distance themselves; neighbours ask, why do you do it? At a family wedding, a relative may start an argument; during a festive gathering, suddenly the focus shifts to you.“At a friend’s son’s wedding, I was asked by a relative, ‘Why did you undo the hard work done by the police?’ It was disturbing to think that even people who know me think of my work like this.”In Lucknow, Mohammad Shoaib was beaten up in a courthouse, by other lawyers, for defending Aftab Alam Ansari, accused in the 2007 Lucknow court blast case. Charges against him were later withdrawn. “I had evidence that Ansari was at a doctor’s office on the day of the blast,” Shoaib says. But terror is one of those crimes where you are guilty, to most of society, until proven innocent. Which is why, constitutional experts say, the role of the criminal defence attorney in terror cases is even more vital.Multiple acquittals in cases like the Akshardham temple attack of 2002 (all 6 accused acquitted) and the Delhi serial blasts of 2005 (2 of 3 acquitted), with the judgements raising questions about the investigation process, underline this point.“A large number of innocent people are arrested in terror-related cases,” says civil rights lawyer and activist Prashant Bhushan. “Most of these suspects are poor and can’t afford good lawyers. In such a situation, not only should there be more lawyers to fight their cases but more organisations helping them with lawyers who will fight pro bono.”The role of the defence lawyer in sensitive terror related cases is also very important as it upholds the values of the Constitution. In the case of Ajmal Kasab [the lone surviving gunman in the 2008 Mumbai terror siege] we had two lawyers arguing for him as he was the citizen of another country. This is the kind of transparency we need to uphold.—Ujjwal Nikam, public prosecutor who handled the 1993 Bombay serial blasts and the 2008 Mumbai terror siege cases, among others.Instead, such organisations are few and fiercely embattled.The legal cell of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Hind, one of India’s largest Muslim NGOs, is currently funding representation for over 600 people accused in cases across the country, most but not all of them Muslim.Since 2007, when the organisation started supporting such cases, they have seen 120 people acquitted. “In the beginning, there was only Shahid Azmi working on such cases in Mumbai. Now we have five lawyers willing to help in the city. We also have lawyers in Delhi and UP . But Shahid Azmi was killed, the other lawyers they are routinely threatened and the establishment makes light of these threats,” says Gulzar Azmi, secretary of the legal cell. HT
Police rule out terror, say tractor tyre and firecracker behind Agra ‘blasts’
Lucknow:Although the cause of two explosions reported near Agra Cantonment railway station on Saturday is yet to be confirmed, both police and railway authorities have prima facie ruled out the terror angle.Officials attributed the first ‘blast’, which occurred at 5 am at a house in Rasoolpura area, to a firecracker. The second one, which took place 45 minutes later at a waste disposal area near platform no. 5 of the station, was reportedly caused due to the bursting of a tractor tyre.“We have collected samples from the blast sites, and they are being examined by forensic experts. However, the tyre of the tractor trolley was found to have a hole. We are verifying the facts,” said deputy inspector general of police (Agra range) Mahesh Kumar Mishra.The first blast occurred at the residence of Ashok Kumar, a plumber, he added.
Posters inviting teenagers to join ISIS found in Bihar:Times Now
Bihar: Posters bearing the name and flag of terror organisation ISIS was found pasted on an electricity pillar in Bihar's Rohtas, police officials said.The posters asked teenagers in Bihar to join the terror outfit.SDPO of Dehri, Mohammad Anwar Javed Ansari said that the police has seized the poster bearing the name and flag of Islamic terror organisation ISIS.The SDPO said that the issue is being probed. The officer, however, suspected it to be foul play by some anti-socials to create fear in minds of people.The police has been directed to be alert in view of recovery of the poster, the SDPO added.
Centre wary of J&K ‘madrasas’ linked to terror:Asian Age
New Delhi: The home ministry has sought a detailed report from the Jammu and Kashmir govt  on whether terror operative and hardliners, including members of the Hurriyat, were using religious places, especially madrasas, for radicalising youth and doing other subversive activities.It is being suspected for some time now that separatists have managed to make inroads into madrasas in Kashmir valley, and are using this opportunity to radicalise young students.It is also believed that terror groups are using the hardliners, like Hurriyat members and their overground workers (OGWs), to target religious places and madrasas.The issue had come on the radar of Central security and intelligence agencies in the wake of unprecedented violence seen in the valley following the killing of Burhan Wani last July.Sources said once the Centre receives a detailed report from the state govt , it will work on a detailed plan as to how religious institutions can be insulated from the increasing threat of radicalisation.“Since the state security agencies, including local police and their intelligence units, are better equipped to get ground-level report as to what exactly is happening in Kashmir, we have asked them to submit details on this,” a senior ministry official said.“So far we are yet to receive the report. Once we get the details both the Centre and the state govt will jointly chalk out a plan to deal with the problem,” the official said.
Kashmir Editors’ Guild asks cops to apologise for assault on journalists
Srinagar:lKashmir Editors’ Guild (KEG) has announced that J&K police’s press notes and advertisements would not be published until action is taken against policemen, who assaulted journalists 2 days ago in Srinagar. Journalists wereattacked while covering a protest outside separatist Syed Ali Geelani’s residence. “Given the fact that the police have not even registered an FIR, for which the photographers have moved an application, the KEG decided that it will, in protest, not publish any press notes of the police or any advertisement from the police organisation till police chief does not apologise for the assault and act against the accused officials,” a KEG spokesman said.In a statement, the KEG alleged that the police had attempted to run a vehicle over photographers and “made a serious bid on the life of AFP photographer Tawseef Mustafa by trying to suffocate him”.  Indian express
Indian clerics to reach Delhi on Monday: Sushma Swaraj
New Delhi: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj spoke to one of the two clerics of Delhi's Hazrat Nizamuddin Dargah, who were later traced after going missing in Pakistan."I just spoke to Syed Nazim Ali Nizami in Karachi. He told me that they are safe and will be back in Delhi tomorrow," she said in a tweet.Pakistan had on Saturday conveyed to India that the two missing clerics had been "traced" and that they had reached Karachi.Syed Asif Nizami, the head priest (Sajjadanashin) of Hazrat Nizamuddin Aulia Dargah, and his nephew Nazim Nizami -- had gone to Pakistan on March 8 and were to return to India on March 20.PTI
Indian delegation leaves for Pak for Indus commission
A 10-member Indian delegation on Sunday left for Pakistan to take part in the meeting of Permanent Indus Commission (PIC) beginning on Monday in Islamabad.A govt  source said India is "always open" to discuss and resolve concerns Pakistan have over its projects under Indus Water Treaty (IWT) bilaterally.The source, however, reiterated that there will be "no compromise" on India exploiting its due rights under 57-year-old pact.PTI
RSS to debate increasing Jihadi attacks in West Bengal
Coimbatore:RSS today accused the West Bengal govt  of remaining a mute spectator to attacks unleashed by Islamic fundamentalists in the state and appeasing the 'jihadis'.RSS Joint General Secretary Bhagaiah said National Executive Council of RSS will debate the issue of alleged "terror being unleashed" by Islamic fundamentalists in West Bengal for the last three years.After debating the issue during the three-day RSS meet here, a resolution will be adopted and sent to the Centre to take steps to prevent 'jihadi' attacks on society and to pressurise the West Bengal Govt  to rein in the fundamentalists, Bhagaiah told reporters here.The Council meet was inaugurated by RSS Sarsanghachalak, Mohan Bhagawat today and is being attended by more than 1,400 representatives from across the country, he said.PTI
When 2 teen sisters gang-raped in front of father in Gujarat & it doesn't make national headlines
Ahmedabad: In a shocking and shameful incident, 2 teen sisters were allegedly gang-raped in front of their father in a moving car in Dahod district of Gujarat - the home state of PM  Narendra Modi - on 15 March. Though the national media picked the news two days later, the brutal incident could not make national headlines.The sisters, aged 13 and 15, and their father were dragged from their shop in the Bhutpagla village in Dahod district on Wednesday and pushed into an SUV and the kidnappers fled away. In the moving car, according to police, the girls were raped in front of their father by 6 abductors - 5 of whom including one called Kumat Baria were arrested. Media reports say that sisters' brother, who was arrested in a prohibition case some time back, had told police he used to procure liquor from Kumat. As a revenge, Kumat and his accomplices abducted girls and gang-raped them.IndiaTomorrow
Aurangabad: ASI stays firm against demand for prayers inside Bibi Ka Maqbara mosque
Aurangabad: Amidst growing voices for permission to allow prayers inside the Bibi Ka Maqbara, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has ruled out the possibility of allowing entry towards the mosque that is located within the historic monument.The ASI, in its written reply to groups seeking permission for entry inside the mosque, has asserted that Bibi ka Maqbara is a non-living monument and therefore the desired permission cannot be granted.While the mosque is an integral part of the Bibi Ka Maqbara, the entire monument has been declared as centrally protected, ASI has said.Yakub Habeebuddin Tucy, who claims to be a direct descendant of the Mughal emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar, was among the first to seek permission for offering prayers inside the mosque situated in the historic Bibi ka Maqbara here, following which a couple of advocacy groups also started pushing fort the same.Janjagran Samiti, one of the group, said it was contemplating legal measures to seek permission for 'Namaz' (prayer) inside the mosque."Muslim community members have convened a special meeting on Sunday to pursue the demand for entry into the mosque located within the Bibi Ka Maqbara for offering prayers. The stand taken by ASI can be negated in the court of law and we are gearing up for the same," Mohsin Ahmed, group president, said.He said, "The mosque will be maintained well if we are allowed to enter it for prayers regularly and consequently, the sentiments of the Muslim community would also not get hurt."A delegation led by the advocacy group—minority educational and welfare foundation—has also submitted a memorandum to the ASI demanding access to the mosques concerned for offering prayers. Group leader Mohammed Anikh Patel has argued that majority of the monuments governed by ASI have mosques inside them that are open for prayers. timesofindia
Note ban opens up new channels of corruption;Austrian economist
New Delhi: Describing demonetisation as an attempt ‘akin to striking a rock with an egg’, eminent Austrian economist Heinz D Kurz has said it is ‘much too weak and misdirected an instrument’ to root out corruption. Actually, he said, the Indian govt ’s move opened up new avenues of corruption.“As far as I understand the situation, the policy of demonetisation has already been abandoned by the govt , because it turned out to be an attempt akin to striking a rock with an egg. “I strongly doubt that the demonetisation exercise will root out corruption and engender more transparency. It is much too weak and misdirected an instrument to achieve these goals,” Kurz said.“By introducing the Rs2,000 banknote, a currency of twice or even four times the value of the banknotes that have been declared illegal, in the system... This can hardly be called demonetisation,” he added.Kurz is a professor of economics at the University of Graz, Austria.PTI
Delhi home to about half of 24,000 Refugees, 9,000 asylum seekers: Forced out of home, looking for respect
Delhi:Refugees in delhi With no option but to leave their countries, refugees are fighting a daily battle of survival with the hope that one day they can return home. Sadio Sheikh, 28, is inconsolable when asked about her parents. A refugee from Somalia, she lives alone in Delhi. Just a mention of her parents unleashes a flood of dark memories she is unable to deal with. She does not want to talk about her parents, her past, why she left Somalia. But she is willing to talk about her life as a refugee in Delhi.“It is tough being a single woman refugee in Delhi. I face a lot of hardships, and at times harassment; the biggest problem is most people here do not know who refugees are,” says Sheikh.While Sheikh is not willing to discuss the harassment she faces, Neija from Myanmar, also a single woman refugee who lives in west Delhi’s Bodella village, is more forthcoming.Delhi is home to about half of the 24,000 refugees and 9,000 asylum seekers — mostly Somalis, Syrians, Afghans, Burmese — registered with UNHCR in India. Then there are about 8,000 Tibetans in the capital; 4,500 of them live in Tibetan refugee colony at Majnu Ka Tila, now known as New Aruna Nagar.Every refugee in Delhi has his or her own story, own experiences: while most Afghans talk of feeling at home in India, the Somalis feel marginalised and are mistaken for Nigerians.But there are a few common threads -- lack of access to education, jobs and healthcare because of their not-so-clear legal status in India, which is not a signatory to the 1951 UN Refugee Convention. There is no national refugee law, which means decisions on them are mostly administrative and different groups are often treated differently. Mohammad Usman, 34, from Myanmar, a casual labourer, says, “We are living in poor conditions; our own Chin brothers here seem to be better off than us. But we are happy, at least we feel safe,” says Usman.HT
Girl students asked to remove burqas to write SSC exams in school: new Indian express
Hyderabad: Sri Vignana Vardhini (SVV) High School located in Saidabad here finds itself in a controversy after a teacher allegedly forced Muslim girl students to remove their burqas before writing SSC exams. Tension prevailed outside the school as irate parents of the students staged a protest near the school on Saturday.“We did not tell anyone to remove burqas. Several students from different religious backgrounds have appeared for examinations in the past 25 years in our school,” N Veerender Babu, correspondent of the school, said. “On Friday students were made to remove their burqas before the exams. Today again when the school asked them to remove their burqas, their parents were infuriated,” said Amjed Ullah Khan, MBT leader, who lodged a complaint with police against school management for hurting religious sentiments.
Rejected for jobs 40 times, this Saddam Hussain goes to court for a new identity
Ranchi:His grandfather had lovingly given him his name, hoping that one day he would grow up into a ‘positive’ human being. Some 25 years later, the marine engineer from Jamshedpur in Jharkhand is despondent on being forced to bear the burden of his name.Two years after passing out as a marine engineer from Tamil Nadu’s Noorul Islam University, Saddam Hussain says he has failed to find a job because of his namesake: the former Iraqi ruler executed in 2006. Saddam Hussein was a dictator blamed for atrocities on his subjects until toppled by the US in 2003.“People are scared to hire me,” laments Jamshedpur’s Saddam. His job application has been rejected each of the 40-odd times he has appeared for interviews with multinational shipping companies. His batchmates around the world have secured employment, but Saddam remains unemployed despite ranking second in his batch of 2014.For the initial six months, Saddam was unable to decipher why he was being rejected. “I then inquired with the HR departments of the companies and some of them told me my name was the problem,” he recounts. He was told that having a crew member with a name that arouses instant suspicion could be an operational nightmare. hindustantimes
Brother of Maulana Mehmood Madni held for rape charges
Agra;A Muslim cleric was arrested in an alleged rape case on Saturday in Deoband area of Saharanpur district. The woman — in her twenties and a resident of Jind district in Haryana — in her complaint against Maulana Masood Madni, who is in his forties, said that he raped her on the pretext of performing a “ritual” which could help her bear children. Police have sent the woman for medical examination to confirm rape. The accused, meanwhile, was produced before court and sent to jail.SSP of the area, Luv Kumar, said Madni is the brother of Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind general secretary Maulana Mehmood Madni. Security has been tightened in Deoband to maintain law and order following the arrest of Masood Madni. “The woman has alleged that she had been to a mazar (a place of worship) in Deoband seeking divine help for a child. She said she has been married for 6 years. She allegedly met a person at the mazar who suggested that she meet with Maulana Masood Madni, and referred to him as a “spiritual doctor” who may help her conceive. The woman and her husband approached Madni and shared their numbers too,” said the SSP.On Friday, according to the complaint, Madni called the woman for some ritual to his house in Deoband and asked her to come alone. “The woman alleged that she was administered a sedative and then raped. We have lodged an FIR under IPC Section 376 (rape) against the accused,” added the SSP. indianexpress
Manipur economic blockade lifted after 130 days
New Delhi:4-month long Manipur economic blockade imposed by the United Naga Council(UNC) was lifted on Sunday evening. The resolution of the lifting of the indefinite blockade was decided in a tripartite talk, involving UNC, govt  of India and Manipur govt  in Manipur’s Senapati district. indianexpress
DSP, 3 cops injured as Jat protesters clash with police
Fatehabad(haryana);A DSP was among four policemen injured when Jat protesters clashed with police during their march towards Delhi here today, police said. A Jat leader, however, claimed that police had lobbed tear gas shells and tried to disperse them when they were marching in a peaceful manner. He claimed a few protesters were also injured.The clash took place in Dhani Gopal village on Sirsa-Hisar Delhi National Highway when police tried to stop tractor trolleys carrying protesters from heading towards the national capital, police said. They said some stones were also pelted by the protesters as they clashed with the cops.PTI
Jat quota agitation: Protesters clash with police in Fatehabad, set two buses on fire
Jat leaders call off agitation in Delhi after talks with Haryana CM
India-UAE conference on globalisation to be held in Dubai
WORLD
Nepal Election Commission removes ‘Hindu state, monarchy’ from Rastriya Prajatantra Party
Nepal’s poll watchdog has decided to remove “Hindu state and monarchy” clauses from the statute of the pro-monarch and pro-Hindu Rastriya Prajatantra Party, saying that they contradicted constitutional provisions of a republican system and secularism. Election Commission’s (EC) decision sparked a protest from the party with Deputy PM  and Minister for Federal Affairs and Local Development Kamal Thapa urging the EC to correct its decision. “EC has robbed the party of its soul by deleting a section about Hindu state and monarchy off the party’s statute,” said Thapa, also the Chairman of the RPP. The EC decided to remove the portion that advocates Hindu state and monarchy from the RPP statute, saying the sections contradicted constitutional provisions of republican order and secularism.After emergency meeting, RRP termed it as “unconstitutional” and decided to challenge it in a court.PTI
Clashes in Syria's Damascus after surprise rebel attack
Heavy clashes rocked eastern districts of the Syrian capital on Sunday after rebel fighters launched a surprise assault on govt  forces there, a monitor and state television said.Steady shelling and sniper fire could be heard across Damascus on Sunday as rebel factions allied with former Al-Qaeda affiliate Fateh al-Sham Front launched an attack on govt  positions in the city's east. The attack began early on Sunday "with two car bombs and several suicide attackers" on the Jobar district, said Rami Abdel Rahman, head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group.Rebels then advanced into the nearby Abbasid Square area, seizing several buildings and firing a barrage of rockets into multiple Damascus neighbourhoods, Abdel Rahman said. aljazeera
London comes out against war in Syria
Hundreds of people marched across London in solidarity with the Syrian people and their struggle against long-time ruler Bashar Al-Assad.The protests, which began at lunchtime, passed through the busy shopping district of Oxford Street, on to Regent Street, passed Piccadilly until it ended outside 10 Downing Street, the official home of the PM . It was organised by the Solidarity for Syrians programme. middleeastmonitor
‘My son was no terrorist,’ says French airport attacker’s father who blames alcohol, drug abuse
Paris:The father of the French man shot dead at Orly airport in Paris after attacking a soldier said Sunday his son was “not a terrorist” and that his actions were caused by drink and drugs. “My son was not a terrorist. He never prayed and he drank. This is what happens under the influence of drink and cannabis,” the father of Ziyed Ben Belgacem told France’s Europe 1 radio.Ben Belgacem triggered a major scare at Orly international airport south of Paris on Saturday morning when he grabbed a female soldier on patrol and put a gun to her head.The attack came around two hours after Ben Belgacem, who had several convictions for armed robbery, fired on police after being pulled over for speeding after spending the night in a bar.The father, who was released from police custody on Sunday after being questioned, said his son phoned him minutes after the shooting “in a state of extreme agitation”.“He said to me: ‘Daddy, please forgive me. I’ve screwed up with a police officer.’He then cut short the conversation and drove to the airport, stealing another car en route.His father then presented himself at a police station, where he was later informed of his son’s death.AFP
Germany not 'convinced' Gulen behind failed Turkey coup
:Germany's intelligence chief said that US-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gulen was not mastermind behind a failed July 15 coup aimed at ousting President Tayyip Erdogan.AFP
 Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:01 PM)

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