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Sunday, 17 December 2017

ND 17 Dec.Akshardham attack ‘mastermind’ released from jail in 40 days; media looks the other way/Zakir Naik, hold that sigh of relief. NIA to file fresh request/BJP MP predicts dismal performance for his party in Gujarat



Evening NEWS DIGEST
17 Dec.2017: 27 Rabial Awwal 1439:Vol:9, No:74
INDIA
Akshardham attack ‘mastermind’ released from jail in 40 days; media looks the other way
Ahmedabad: In the early morning of 4th Nov, Abdul Rashid Ajmeri was picked in a dramatic style soon after he landed at the Ahmedabad International Airport from Saudi Arabia. On all TV channels throughout the day and on the front pages of newspapers next day, he was presented as ‘mastermind’ and ‘main conspirator’ of the 2002 Akshardham terror attack. But in just 40 days, the ‘mastermind’ has been released by the court and there is no news about his release in the media.A POTA court here ordered his release on bail on 15th Dec. and he was released from the Ahmedabad jail on 16th Dec.. Ajmeri’s counsel Adv. Ilyas Khan while arguing before the judge PV Desai said that the accused was arrested after a gap of 15 years while the Supreme Court has already acquitted all the accused in the case including Ajmeri’s own elder brother Adam Suleman Ajmeri in 2014 for lack of  evidence against them. While the prosecutor opposed Ajmeri’s release on bail, the court ordered his release.Days and months after the attack, at least half a dozen local Muslims including Ajmeri’s brother Adam Suleman Ajmeri were arrested for the attack. In 2006, two of them including Adam Suleman Ajmeri were awarded death sentence and 4 others life sentence by the trail court. Gujarat High Court had also upheld the verdict of the trial court. However, in 2014, the Supreme Court set aside the judgment and acquitted all the six convicts. The SC had even pulled up the Gujarat police for implicating the innocents.After remaining in the limelight as ‘big terror catch’ for two days following his arrest on 4th Nov, Ajmeri was buried somewhere in the media day after the POTA court denied his police custody and sent him to jail on 5th Nov.The court, however, had allowed Ahmedabad City DCB to question him inside the jail,if required. Ajmeri was provided legal help by Jamiat Ulama-I-Hind. Earlier accused persons were also helped by the organization. Maulana Gulzar Azmi, Jamiat’s Legal Cell head, informed that special POTA court had ordered Ajmeri’s release on Friday but as it had become late so the order copy was sent to jail on Saturda and he was released in the evening the same day. Azmi said: “Judiciary does justice but the administration has become so blind in hatred against Muslims that it arrests Muslims even 15 years of the incident and prosecutes them.” Coincidentally, Rashid Ajmeri’s arrest took place just a day after PM Narendra Modi made a visit to Akshardham temple as he kicked off campaign for Gujarat polls.Caravan News
Law panel to suggest law to compensate victims of wrongful incarceration
New Delhi:Should those wrongfully incarcerated be compensated and should India have a law in this regard? The Law Commission will examine the issue in the coming days following a reference from the Delhi High Court. Delivering its order in Nov, the HC had expressed concern over the lack of legal remedies for victims of “wrongful incarceration and malicious prosecution”.Referring to a report of GS Bajpai, a professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice and Registrar at National Law University, court had pointed out that 32 states in the US have enacted laws that provide monetary and non-monetary compensation to people wrongfully incarcerated. There are specific schemes in UK and New Zealand in this regard. Bajpai was appointed as amicus curiae (friend of the court) in the case.India has no exclusive legislation on the issue. But the SC in several cases has held that compensation can be awarded by constitutional courts for violation of fundamental right, court had said in the order.“These have included instances of compensation being awarded to those wrongly incarcerated as well. But these are episodic and are not easily available to all similarly situated persons,” it had observed.PTI
Zakir Naik, hold that sigh of relief. NIA to file fresh Interpol Red Corner Notice request
NIA will submit a fresh request for an Interpol Corner Red Notice against Zakir Naik, an agency official was quoted as saying by IANS.The official said Interpol didn't accept the NIA's earlier request a Red Corner Notice against the IRF founder because a "chargesheet had not been filed when the request was submitted."Zakir Naik told India today he was "relieved" by news of Interpol's refusal to issue the notice. "I would feel even more relieved if my country's Govt  and agencies clear me of all false charges," he said in an exclusive video response.
I feel relieved, now want India to clear my name of false charges-Zakir Naik
Christian priests detained in MP: Cop asked us- ‘Why don’t you convert Muslims in Kashmir?’
Bhopal:“You are from Kerala. Everyone is a Hindu here. Why do you come to preach and convert only Hindus? Why don’t you go to Kashmir to convert Muslims to Christianity?’’ a uniformed policeman allegedly asked priests and seminarians who were detained at Civil Lines police station in Satna, MP, late on Thursday for alleged conversion by force.“He was echoing right-wing Hindu activists who outnumbered the police,’’Paul Varghese, a rector at the seminary in Satna, said, describing the atmosphere in the police station where priests and seminarians brought from Bhumkahar village were kept in a room. They went to the village to sing carols and perform a play about saving the girl child. Accusing them of forcible conversions, some villagers and Hindutva activists asked them to stop the programme and called the police, who took more than 30 seminarians and priests to the police station.Varghese, 39, alleged that the right-wing activists abused them in front of police personnel. Except priests, who were let go on Friday afternoon, seminarians were allowed to go after midnight, he said.Martin P Davis, 45, said he and two other priests were on way to the police station to enquire about the detainees when they saw a car burning outside the station. Davis alleged that he was surrounded by about 20 activists after he got off the vehicle. “They pulled my clothes, punched and pushed me several times. I was about to collapse when a policeman rescued me,’’ he said. He was taken to a room near the police station where wireless sets are kept and asked to hide. Davis said he hid under a table and could access medical treatment for injuries only around 2.30 am.B Head constable Rakesh Keavat said Vikas Shukla, 18, was arrested on Saturday for allegedly torching the car belonging to the Christian group. indianexpress
'Draconian' FRDI Bill Will Take Away People's Bank Deposits, Roll it Back: Mamata Banerjee to Jaitley
 West Bengal CM  Mamata Banerjee has written to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley urging immediate withdrawal of FRDI Bill to save people from "financial ruin".In a letter to Jaitley, she said people will lose faith in the banking system if Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance (FRDI) Bill is not withdrawn.FRDI Bill will completely shatter the age-old faith and trust reposed by the people in the banking system of the country, she said in the letter.Centre is planning to table the bill during the Winter Session of Parliament."I will like to sincerely appeal to the Centre to desist from enacting this Draconian law and withdraw the bill to ensure that the common people in the country are saved from financial ruin," she wrote.Already, people are reeling under the adverse effects of demonetisation and hastily-introduced GST regime, she said.Banerjee felt if FRDI came into being, it would "forcibly" take away the hard-earned life savings of common people entrusted to the banks, for "bailing out one section of vested interests, who have siphoned off the loans given to them by the banks".She said this is tantamount to cheating the depositors for no fault of theirs. Citing examples, CM  said the bill would forcibly convert the deposits into equity shares of the bank, when it goes bankrupt.It could change the nature of deposits from one class to another, thereby changing the interest rate or the tenure of the deposit.It could also impose a stay on depositors' right to withdraw deposits before maturity. It could also put a moratorium on payment of interest during repayment of deposits on maturity, she said.“To cover up the failures and allow one section of the vested interests to go unpunished, the Centre wants the common depositors to forgo their life-savings. This is really shocking and unacceptable,”she said.News18
All eyes on Gujarat, Himachal as stage set for counting
Ahmedabad/Shimla: Counting of votes will be held tomorrow for the Gujarat and Himachal assembly polls, viewed as a prestige battle for PM  Narendra Modi and a litmus test for new Congress president Rahul Gandhi.While the BJP is seeking a sixth straight term in Gujarat, the Congress is aiming to stage a comeback in power after being in the opposition for over two decades.The results are expected to have a bearing on the 2019 Lok Sabha polls as Modi had come to power in 2014 based on the Gujarat 'model of development'. Much-awaited results of the keenly fought elections will be announced on Dec. 18 when the counting of votes will be held at 37 centres across the state's 33 districts, amid tight security.PTI
Engineers being hired to hack into EVMs: Hardik Patel
 2 days after accusing the BJP of possible EVM tampering in Gujarat, Patidar leader Hardik Patel on Sunday said that a group of software engineers was being hired to hack into the machines."Preparations are on to hack 4,000 EVMs in Gujarat with the help of 140 engineers from an Ahmedabad-based company," alleged Patel on Twitter.He followed his tweet up by claiming that there had been an attempt to hack EVMs in Visnagar, Radhanpur, Vav, and several Patel-dominated and tribal areas.Later in the day, he justified his claims about EVM tampering by saying that if a divine creation like the human body can be tampered with, so could an EVM.He added that ATM hacking was a reality, and therefore, EVM tampering was not that improbable.This is not the first time Patel has raised such concerns. On Friday, he used multiple tweets to warn people to remain alert to prevent the BJP from indulging in malpractices."If the BJP loses the Gujarat polls, it will be the party's nemesis. BJP can win Gujarat election only through EVM tampering; it will win Gujarat and lose Himachal Pradesh so that no doubts are raised," he had written. timesofindia
Gujarat elections: Exit polls are nonsense, BJP will definitely lose, says Jignesh Mevani
With a day to go for the declaration of Gujarat election results, Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani on Sunday rubbished the exit polls and said the BJP would not form the Govt  this time.Mevani, who is contesting from Vadgam in Banskantha district, was on Sunday present at his constituency where re-polling was taking place. Polling at two booths under the Vadgam seat was suspended on Thursday during the second phase after ink marks were found on the election symbol of Independent candidate Mevani on EVM and a BJP candidate raised an objection. On Friday, the Election Commission ordered re-polling in six booths where polling was held on Dec. 14 during the second phase. indianexpress
BJP MP predicts dismal performance for his party in Gujarat
Pune: As most exit poll surveys predicted the BJP to win the Gujarat Assembly polls, its Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Kakade has claimed that the party would not win enough seats to form the next Govt in the state."Forget absolute majority, the party will not even get enough number of seats to form Govt. Congress, on the other hand, will reach close to the majority mark," Kakade claimed."If at all the party retains power in the state, it will be only and only because of Narendra Modi," he said.Kakade claimed his team has conducted a survey in Gujarat and his claim was based on the outcome of that survey."I had sent a team of six people to Gujarat. They mostly covered the rural part of the state where they met farmers, drivers, waiters and labourers. Based on their survey and my own observation, I feel the BJP will not get an absolute majority in Gujarat," he said.Kakade cited anti-incumbency against the BJP Govt as a reason for his prediction."BJP has been in power in Gujarat for 22 years. Since Independence, apart from the communists in West Bengal, there is not a single party in the country which has remained in power for 25 years," he claimed.Kakade said the negative feeling against the party may cost BJP in this election.He pointed out that BJP leaders did not talk about development in any of the campaign rallies in the last phase."In the last a few rallies, there was no word on development by the party leaders. There was no mention of employment generation in Gujarat or about any major decision taken by the party during last three years. Rallies were aimed at targeting the Opposition and making an emotional appeal to voters," he said.  PTI
BJP MP Predicts Defeat In Gujarat Elections, Says Muslim Population Unhappy
Punjab civic polls LIVE : Clean sweep by Congress, CM hails victory
The Congress secured a sweeping majority in the three municipal corporations of Amritsar, Jalnadhar and Patiala which went to polls today, while counting continued at the remaining seats. Congress bagged 66 out of 80 wards in Jalandhar, in Patiala in won 56 out of 60 wards and in Amritsar the party managed to win 69 of the 85 wards.In a statement issued this evening Punjab CM Amarinder Singh said, “I congratulate people of Punjab for not succumbing to the pressure tactics of the opposition, which had tried hard to derail the free and democratic poll process with its cheap gimmickry and provocative acts.”Earlier in the day, three municipal corportations and 29 municipal councils and nagar panchayats in Punjab went to polls amid tight security. A total of 925 candidates are in the fray for the elections to three municipal corporations with the ruling Congress, the SAD-BJP and the AAP contesting the polls.The civic polls in the state were held nine months after the assembly elections in the state, in which the Amarinder Singh-led Congress government wrested the power in the state from SAD-BJP combine. Notably, this was the first time the voters had the option of ‘None Of The Above’ in civic bodies polls. indianexpress
Rahul Gandhi is the leader India needs, will be next PM : Sudheendra Kulkarni
New Delhi:Sudheendra Kulkarni, ex- aid of BJP leader L K Advani, on Saturday showered praise on newly-elected Congress president Rahul Gandhi, saying he is the leader India needs and that he will be the next PM  Congratulating Gandhi after he took over as the president of the Congress party, Kulkarni tweeted, “Today I’m even more convinced Congress President Rahul Gandhi will, and should, become India’s next PM. A new leader is born. A leader India needs,” Kulkarni tweeted. He hailed Rahul Gandhi as a leader with “truly Gandhian philosophy of politics”. “A leader with a new – truly Gandhian – philosophy of politics. Politics of idealism, of love, of service, of inclusion, of dialogue,” he tweeted.PTI
Why is a new law needed for triple talaq, asks Women & Child  Development Ministry: indianexpress
 New Delhi: Ministry of Women and Child Development is learnt to have expressed certain reservations about the triple talaq Bill before the union cabinet approved it on Friday.The proposed Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill criminalises triple talaq. A copy of the draft Bill was circulated among the concerned ministries.While most ministries concurred, the WCD Ministry dissented on some issues.WCD Ministry questioned the need for separate legislation, arguing that divorce by triple talaq amounted to cruelty and hence, fell within the purview of Section 498A of IPC. This section, “Husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty”, popularly known as the “dowry law”, defines “cruelty” as “any wilful conduct which is of such a nature as is likely to drive the woman to commit suicide or to cause grave injury or danger to life, limb or health (whether mental or physical) of the woman; or harassment of the woman where such harassment is with a view to coercing her or any person related to her to meet any unlawful demand for any property or valuable security…”Law Ministry disagreed with the WCD Ministry — arguing that while this section provided for punitive action against a husband or his relatives, a separate law was required because there were no dedicated provisions to deal with instant triple talaq. WCD Ministry also flagged the issues of payment of maintenance, and the custody of children. The proposed Bill provides for maintenance to be paid to the wife through a magistrate, and for her to get custody of the couple’s child. Both of these provisions would legitimise the talaq, WCD Ministry argued. In response, the Law Ministry clarified that the maintenance was meant to serve as a “subsistence allowance” for the woman and her dependent children in case of a separation, until the divorce was finalised. Maintenance, as stipulated under Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Divorce) Act, 1986, would be applicable only if, and when, the divorce was finalised. The Law Ministry also pointed out that a magistrate can decide on the custody of the children even if the couple were not divorced, and that custody in no way validated triple talaq. Under Muslim personal law, the father has the upper hand, as he is considered to be the natural guardian. The mother only has hizzanat or custody of a female child until puberty; and of a male child, until the age of 7 in the case of Sunnis, and just two for Shias.Incidentally, the WCD Ministry was not a part of the inter-ministerial group that was set up to draft the Bill.
News on triple talaq is ‘mischievous, misleading': Ministry
 New Delhi: Ministry of Women and Child Development (WCD) on Sunday asserted that it fully supported the Cabinet’s proposal on ‘triple talaq’ making instant talaq a criminal offence and termed a news item claiming otherwise as ”deliberately mischievous and factually misleading”.In a strongly worded statement, the WCD ministry also opined that it should have been contacted for clarification before the leading newspaper which reported on the matter carried the story ”on a subject with such serious ramifications”. dailyexcelsior
AIMPLB Meets senior community leaders today
Lucknow: All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) members meet senior leaders of Muslim community today in Delhi to formulate a response on the proposed ‘Mulsim Women (Protection of rights on marriage) Bill, 2017’ to be tabled in the Pprliament. AIMPLB is not happy with the NDA Govt ’s move to rush with the bill as neither the Board nor any Muslim outfit or prominent Islamic scjolars were consulted before its drafting. “A meeting of AIMPLB office-bearers and some other important Muslim leaders is to be held today, which will decide about the response of Muslims to this Bill,” said Board secretary Zafaryaab Jilani. Jilani said representatives of Jamat-e- Islami, Jamait Ulma Hind, Milli Council, Darul Uloom Deoband, and leaders of Barelivi Sunni muslim sect from Bareilly and Mubarakpur (Azamgarh) and MIM MP Asaduddin Owasi etc will participate in the meeting. dailypioneer
T.N. to oppose jail term for triple talaq
Chennai:Terming Bill an attempt by the BJP to “interfere in the personal laws” of Muslims, A. Anwhar Raajhaa, secretary of AIADMK minorities’ wing and Ramanathapuram MP, told The Hindu on Saturday that the party’s position had been arrived at after a discussion with the party’s co-coordinator and CM  Edappadi K. Palaniswami.The only Muslim Minister in the State Govt , Nilofer Kafeel, who handles the Labour and Wakf Board, said that a consensus was arrived at a meeting which was attended by religious leaders and Muslim representatives of various political parties. “When we discussed the matter with the CM , he told us that it was his duty to safeguard the interests of divorced women,” the Minister said, adding that Mr. Palaniswami too felt that the punitive clause was “slightly harsh.”According to a letter sent to the Union Law and Justice Ministry on Friday, the State Govt  favoured omission of the provision, which envisaged punishment with three years’ imprisonment and a fine in the event of any man pronouncing talaq-e-biddat. However, it supported the clause on subsistence allowance for women and dependent children. Besides, it concurred with the provision handing over to women the custody of minor children. thehindu
SC judgment on triple talaq correct: Tauqeer Raza
New Delhi: Welcoming the decision of Modi Govt  to treat instant triple talaq as illegal and void and will attract a jail term of three years for the husband, All India Ittehad Millat Council Chairman Tauqeer Raza Khan said today the present Govt  wants to declare instant talaq as a crime but it has been considered a crime in shariah for the past 1400 years. He said giving instant talaq is a major sin. Prophet Mohammed (pbuh) has expressed strong anger over giving triple talaq at one go. The awareness we should have created among the people regarding triple talaq at one go, could not be made possible, however whom we consider as our enemy are doing the service to Islam.He said though giving instant triple talaq is a punishable sin, but if the talaq has been given, it would be valid , there are no ifs and buts in this regard. Maulana Tauqeer Raza cited that the man who gave instant triple talaq was punished with lashes during Hazrat Umar’s (RAA) time. siasat
Triple Talaq: Muslim women say they are worried of repercussions
Hyderabad: A day after Union Cabinet cleared draft bill which makes triple talaq a cognisable and non-bailable offence, vigilant Muslim women from Telangana expressed concern on its repercussions.Child Protection Officer from Karimnagar Durdana Parveen said if marriage and divorce is brought in the purview of crime, the families of the litigating parents will be the worst sufferers.She went on to argue that even though the practice of pronouncing triple talaq at one go is wrong and against Islamic, if the role of clergy in the process of divorce of Muslims no more exists, it will only lead to more tension in the religious community. Some women said they are concerned that the standard practice of Talaq-e -sunnat — where the talaq involves a waiting period of three lunar months between the first talaq and the confirmation of  divorce — will also be banned next if the law criminalising talaq e  biddat is criminalised. newindianexpress
Triple talaq bill violation of Criminal Law:  Faizan Mustafa
Hyderabad: Legal experts are strongly opposing the proposed triple talaq bill to be introduced by the centre. Several experts have raised objections on the draft bill prepared by the Govt  and termed it as violation of criminal laws.Commenting upon the draft bill, Faizan Mustafa, vice chancellor of Nalsar University of Law, declared it destructive and damaging. He said though the centre is adamant to pass the bill but the question is how can you identify such thing as crime when the other person has not been harmed physically. This matter is not appropriate for criminal justice system. Since the triple talaq crime is an oral matter it is difficult to prove.Prof. Mustafa said criminal law would not help in social reformation. He said several experts and even Supreme Court have identified that triple talaq cases are very less in the country. Centre disclosed that only 67 cases of triple talaq have come to the fore, of which 2 are from Hyderabad.Prof. Mustafa urged the centre to create awareness instead of punishing the men. siasat
Udaipur protesters call Afrazul killer ‘symbol of Hindu anger’, cite ‘Muslim video’
Udaipur: Kishan Soni, Govt school teacher and divisional head of the Hindu Jagran Manch in Udaipur, paced up and down outside the Bhopal Pura Police Station here on Saturday, speaking incessantly on his cellphone, occasionally jotting down numbers of FIRs.33-year-old was trying to secure bail for the scores of youngsters booked by the police for violent protests in the city on Dec. 14. They were arrested for stone-pelting on officials, violating Section 144, and putting up a saffron flag over the main entrance of the District and Sessions Court in Udaipur. A crowd of several thousand had destroyed shops and left more than a dozen policemen injured in the protests. Of the 207 arrested, 153 were released on bail after police talked to Hindu outfits.Restrictions had been imposed under Section 144 in the town on Dec. 14 to prevent protests over the arrest of Shambhulal Regar in Rajsamand, accused of murdering labourer Afrazul Khan and sharing a video of the killing.Soni said the arrested men were not associated with any organisation, including the Hindu Jagran Manch. He claimed they were not protesting in support of Regar but against offensive slogans raised at a “Muslim rally” on Dec. 8 over the killing of Afrazul. “In the video, the protesters are seen shouting slogans such as ‘If one has to stay in India, he has to say Allahu Akbar’ and ‘There’s only one king of India, my khwaja’,” said Gaurav Nagda, 21-year-old media in-charge of Shiv Sena in Udaipur.He said a “massive campaign” was held on social media asking Hindu men to assemble at Udaipur in protest of the video. Police have also arrested 10 Muslim men in association with Dec.8 rally. Denying that there was anything “inflammatory” about the video, Mohammed Khalil, president of the Anjuman Committee, Udaipur, said, “These are standard slogans of people from the Muslim community during rallies. Allahu Akbar means ‘God is great’ while the Khwaja we refer to is Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti.” Calling it an attempt to mislead people, Khalil said, “More Hindus go to the Ajmer dargah than Muslims… People are trying to give the video a communal colour.” Defending the Dec. 14 protest held in “retaliation”, Nagda called it a “spontaneous reaction” by “angry Hindu youth”. “The destruction would have been worse if they were associated with outfits. If Shiv Sena had not been neutral, situation would have got out of control,” he claimed. However, while members of the Hindu outfits say they weren’t protesting against Regar’s arrest, many justified Afrazul’s killing. “As long as a strong law is not passed against ‘love jihad’, chances are that more Regars will come forward. Regar is the symbol of what the Hindu community feels right now,” said Ganesh Vaishnav, a member of Shiv Sena.Police said most of the protesters came from outside Udaipur, specifically for the demonstration, hearing about it on social media. indianexpress
Rajasthan: In village where Afrazul Khan was killed, houses empty out
Soon, Mohammed Inaul will go home. Most of his friends have left Rajasthan and the only thing that keeps the 34-year-old in Rajsamand is his uncle Afrazul Khan’s death certificate. Khan was hacked to death on Dec. 6, with the alleged assailant Shambhulal Regar filming murder and later go on a long, anti-Islam diatribe.“I will get the death certificate from the authorities in the next couple of days and then I will head back to Saiyadpur in Malda,” says Inaul.A week after Afrazul’s death, migrant workers from West Bengal, almost all of them from Malda, are leaving Rajasthan in large groups, scared over their uncertain future. “I was in Rajasthan since the past decade to earn money but after seeing Afrazul’s half-charred body, I can’t stay here any longer,” says M.Ziaul Haq, a labourer.In Dhoinda, a village in Rajsamand where Afrazul lived, most of the quarters are locked, their occupants gone. Those who have stayed on are getting increasingly distrustful of strangers.“I am still here because of a road construction contract that I had taken. As soon as it’s finished, I too will head back to Malda. Here we hear about processions and meetings every day since Afrazul was murdered and we feel uneasy,” says Mohammed Barkat Ali, a labour contractor.“Back home, we have no savings and don’t know if we will get work regularly. Here, in Rajasthan, there is no dearth of work. But after this incident, I am scared to stay here any longer,” says another labourer, Mohammed Rafiul.“We are not safe here and that’s why we are going back to West Bengal. We may earn less but at least our families won’t have to worry about our safety.” indianexpress
In Afrazul’s wake: Shaken by killing of Muslim labourer in Rajasthan, some returned, but not for long: indianexpress
Amid police crackdown, villagers around Alwar give up on cows: indianexpress
Free schooling for 2 kids of  Muslim man shot dead in Rajasthan
JAIPUR : 2 children of a 35-year-old Muslim man, who was shot dead in Rajasthan last month, will be admitted to a school in Kozhikode after a Kerala-based political party offered to sponsor their studies.Umar Mohammad was killed while transporting cattle with 2 other companions, Tahir Khan and Javed Khan, on Nov.10 and his mutilated body was found by the railway tracks in Alwar. A badly damaged pick-up truck was recovered nearby.The incident agitated many local Muslim groups, who organised protests. Police have arrested Tahir and Javed on charges of cow smuggling and say Umar was killed by “anti-social elements”.2 other men have also been held on the charges of killing and looting Umar. Police suspect Umar and his companions were cow smugglers.A team of the youth wing of the IUML visited Ghatmika, Umar’s village in Bharatpur, on Nov.14 and later the party’s MP ET Muhammed Basheer gave a cheque of Rs 2 lakh to the family. HT
Aligarh BSP corporator takes oath in Urdu: 20 unidentified people booked for rioting, criminal intimidation
AGRA: 2 days after BSP corporator, Musharraf Hussain, was booked for attempting to "outrage religious feelings" after he insisted on taking the oath in Urdu, Aligarh police on Friday registered a FIR on his complaint against 20 unidentified people for rioting and criminal intimidation.Aligarh SP Rajesh Pandey said that cases have been registered on the basis of Hussain's complaint alleging that he was assaulted. SSP said that video footage of oath taking ceremony is being checked for identification of people.TOI
Aligarh: 20 people chanting ‘BJP Zindabad’ booked for assault on BSP corporator
Hindutva a way of living, inherited from ancient times: Vice President Naidu
Panaji:Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu said that there are some people who look at “Hindutva” with narrow religious connotations rather than looking at it as a way of living of the people. He was addressing the “India Ideas Conclave 2017” in Goa.He said, “It is unfortunate that some people look at the word “Hindu” with a narrow religious connotation.”“It (Hindu) was a larger identity of way of living of the people of this country for years together,” he added.PTI
Anybody living in India is a Hindu: RSS chief
Agartala: Anybody living in India is a Hindu, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat said on Sunday, asserting that the meaning of Hindutva is to unite all communities.Hindutva is different from Hinduism, he told a public function at the Swami Vivekananda Maidan in the heart of Tripura's capital."The Muslims in India are also Hindus," the RSS Sarsanghchalak said.Bhagwat,  said, "We have no enmity with anyone. We want welfare of all. To unite all is the meaning of Hindutva."PTI
Jerusalem has been capital of Jewish community for 5000 yrs, claims Israeli envoy
Kolkata:Israel’s ambassador to India Daniel Carmon on Sunday said that Jerusalem has been the capital of the Jewish community for five thousand years and would continue to be so.“It was a fact stated by the President of the US. It is a fact that Jerusalem has been the capital of the Jewish people for five thousand years. It has been the capital of the modern state of Israel for seventy years. If you visit Jerusalem you will see what it means to have Jerusalem the capital of modern Israel. Jerusalem is the capital of modern state of Israel and it will continue to be so forever,” Carmon said on the sidelines of the rededication ceremony of the Beth El synagogue. He was in the city to attend the rededication ceremony of Beth El and Maghen David synagogues — 2 of Kolkata’s oldest synagogues, which have recently been restored. Indianexpress
It is not a battle of influence. This is an issue of Iran interfering in our internal affairs: Saudi’s envoy to India
Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to India Saud Bin Mohammed Al-Sati talks about the recent social reforms in the country, calls the anti-corruption crackdown a ‘straight-forward’ process, assures the ‘Nitaqat’ programme won’t impact Indian workers, and blames ‘expansionist’ Iran for destabilising the Middle East. Al-Sati said, "India and Saudi Arabia have an old friendship. We share cultural ties and heritage. There are a few main pillars of the relationship between the two countries — trade, investment, energy cooperation, security cooperation and the relationship we share because of the large Muslim community here. We facilitate many of their visa applications and welcome them to Saudi Arabia. This is a very important dimension of the relationship. We also have very good security and defense cooperation. Also, terrorism is a common threat to both the countries and we have very solid cooperation in this area. Saudi Arabia will be hosting India as its guest of honor for the national heritage festival to be held in Feb." Replying to the question that the Saudi has been engaged in a battle of influence with Iran?, he said, "It is not a battle of influence. This is an issue of them (Iran) interfering in our internal affairs — whether it is Lebanon, Iraq,Syria, Saudi, Bahrain, Yemen…It is not an issue of competition, what we see is a country that is pursuing an expansionist foreign policy approach. It is an issue of applying radical ideas, and it concerns us." On America's  Jerusalem declaration, Saudi envoy said, "We issued a very strong statement before the American President made the announcement. Even after the announcement was made, we expressed deep regret. We asked the (US) administration to reverse the decision. We took a strong collective decision at a meeting of the Arab nations, which rejected the American decision.We are the biggest supporter of the Palestinian cause. It is top priority for our country, as it is for Arabs and Muslims all around the world. We are actively engaged in trying to find a solution to the issue." financialexpress
Protests in J-K’s Kupwara over civilian allegedly killed in firing by army
Srinagar:Protests erupted on Sunday in J&K ’s Kupwara district against the killing of a civilian driver allegedly by the Army, but the military said the man died in cross-fire between security forces and militants.Defence Ministry spokesman Colonel Rajesh Kalia said the Army placed an ambush in Thandipora village on Saturday night after being tipped off about the presence of militants.“At around 10.55 p.m., the military observed suspicious movement of three persons which prompted the security forces to open fire, leading to a gunfight,” the officer said.“In the cross-fire, a person, later identified as Asif Iqbal Bhat, a taxi driver, was killed due to a gunshot wound,” he added.But villagers alleged that Bhat succumbed to injuries he sustained when an Army patrol fired at a vehicle.As people took to the streets shouting slogans on Sunday, security forces used tear smoke to disperse them. Internet was suspended across Kupwara district.IANS
J&K:Sacked teacher-couple reinstated but refuse to join
Srinagar:The teacher couple who was sacked on their wedding day for having a ‘love marriage’ have refused to join the school even after being reinstated as their reputation has been maligned.The school had on Saturday offered to give the teachers their job back after intervention from local authorities. The couple, however, refused to join, saying their image has been tarnished beyond repair.“What will the students of the school be thinking about us? Will we enjoy the same status and respect among our colleagues?” asked Tariq Ahmad.Tariq and his wife Sumaya Bashir, teachers of Muslim Educational Institute of Pampore, were working in the school since 2013 and 2010 respectively.They were sacked on the day of the wedding, which authorities termed was “a bad influence on 2000 students and 200 staff members in the school”.Tariq, however, said giving the job back is not the answer and wants action against the school. “I am planning a defamation case against the school,” he said. hindustantimes
Court reserves order on The Wire’s plea against gag order
Ahmedabad;An Ahmedabad court on Saturday concluded the hearing on a petition filed by news portal The Wire against a gag order in connection with a civil defamation suit filed by Jay Shah, son of BJP chief Amit Shah.Additional Senior Civil Judge B K Dasondi said the order may be passed on Dec. 23.Earlier, the Gujarat High Court had rejected the news portal’s petition challenging the gag order, and asked it to approach the court which had passed the order.The high court also asked the lower court to decide The Wire’s plea before Dec. 26.The lower court had issued an injunction while hearing the Rs 100-crore civil defamation suit filed by Jay Shah against seven respondents over an article published by the news portal.PTI
Temple head donates land for mosque expansion in Mangalore
Mangalore: The president of a Hindu temple donated a part of his land for the expansion of a near-by mosque in the Dakshina Kannada District of Karnataka. He further asserted that there is nothing bigger than unity and harmony between the Hindu and the Muslim community in the nation.Mohan Rai, president of Eliya Sri Vishnumurthy Temple donated 12 cents of his land to a masjid located next to his property. Rai is from of Olemundovu village under Keyyur gram panchayat of Dakshina Kannada district in Karnataka. The masjid authorities thanked him for the gesture and appreciated this move.“The masjid is located close to my property and the committee needed additional land. Though we are of different faiths, we have only one god. Hence, we have to respect all religions. We should not discriminate in the name of religions. God has given me everything and I am donating a part of it,” said Rai, Times of India reported.
Damage to Jama Masjid serious, needs immediate attention: Report
Delhi :The district administration’s report on the degeneration of the iconic Jama Masjid says the damage to the structure is serious and the 361-year-old mosque in the heart of old Delhi requires immediate restoration.“Observations and suggestions for Jama Masjid restoration have been compiled. The findings say the damage is evident and it should be taken seriously. According to the survey report, the mosque receives 10-20, 000 tourists and worshippers every day and the damaged portions pose a threat to them,” Delhi Govt official said. Teams comprising members of the District Diaster Management Authority (DDMA), Delhi circle of Archaeological Survey of India  and Delhi Wakf Board (DWB) examined the structure on Thursday.After the survey, the teams were to submit their findings to their respective department heads on Friday.HT
Jama Masjid to get back its lost glory: Second govt team visits mosque to assess damage
IMA opposes draft National Medical Commission Bill, says it will ‘cripple’ profession
New Delhi:Indian Medical Association (IMA) has strongly opposed the draft bill that seeks to replace the Medical Council of India with a new body, claiming it will cripple the medical profession.The draft National Medical Commission Bill was on Friday approved by the Cabinet. It provides for the constitution of four autonomous boards entrusted with conducting undergraduate and postgraduate education, assessment and accreditation of medical institutions and registration of practitioners under National Medical Commission (NMC).PTI
NIA lodges case against 5 alleged ISIS links from Kerala
NIA has lodged a case against 5 alleged ISIS sympathisers, hailing from Kerala’s Kannur district, the agency said on Sunday.The central probe agency said it took over the case from the Kerala police, which had booked the five men in Oct.5accused are -- Midhilaj (26), Abdul Rasak (34), Rashid M V (24), Manaf Rahman (42) and Hamsa UK (57). hindustantimes
WORLD
UN draft resolution seeks to make US move on Jerusalem null and void
UN Security Council is considering a draft resolution affirming that any change to the status of Jerusalem has no legal effect and must be reversed, in response to the US shift to recognise the city as Israel’s capital.Egypt circulated the draft text yesterday, and diplomats said the council could vote on the proposed measure as early as tonight.The draft resolution stresses that Jerusalem is an issue “to be resolved through negotiations” and expresses “deep regret at recent decisions concerning the status of Jerusalem”, without mentioning Mr Trump’s move. “Any decisions and actions which purport to have altered the character, status or demographic composition of the Holy City of Jerusalem have no legal effect, are null and void and must be rescinded,” it says.Diplomats said they expected the US to use its veto power to block the measure while most, if not all, of the 14 other council members were expected to back the draft resolution.US Vice-President Mike Pence will visit Jerusalem on Wednesday, wading into the ­crisis over one of the most ­controversial issues in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.The draft calls on all countries to refrain from opening embassies in Jerusalem, reflecting concerns that other Govt s could follow the US.It demands that all member-states not recognise any actions that are contrary to UN resolutions on the city’s status.7 UN resolutions call on Israel to withdraw from territory seized during the 1967 war and have reaffirmed the need to end the occupation of that land.Backed by Muslim countries, the Palestinians are expected to turn to the UN General Assembly to adopt a resolution rejecting the US decision, if, as expected, the measure is vetoed by the US at the council.Aside from the US, Britain, China, France and Russia can veto any resolution presented at the council, which requires 9 votes for adoption.AFP, AP
Over 80,000 protesters rally in Jakarta against Jerusalem move, calling to boycott US products: aljazeera
Tens of thousands of protesters rallied outside the US embassy in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, against President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.Sunday's protest was the fourth and largest mass rally in Indonesia, world's largest Muslim nation, since Trump's announcement on Jerusalem's status on Dec 6. An estimated 80,000 protesters called on Trump to stop his plans to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.Al Jazeera's Dessi Arianti, reporting from the protest in Jakarta, said that many of the marchers travelled from out of town to show solidarity with the Palestinian cause."Men, women and children, carrying Palestinian flags and banners, condemned the US move while rallying at the National Monument in Jakarta at sunrise on Sunday," Arianti said."Many people, wearing white Muslim robes, held hands in prayers and called on Israel to leave Palestinian soil. Indonesia has been a long-time supporter of independent Palestine. Protesters called for a resolution to end the conflict and vowed to continue fighting for the cause," our correspondent said.Anwar Abbas, a top scholar from the Indonesian Council of Ulema, read a petition calling on Indonesians to stop buying American products until Trump revoked his move."Don't rely on their products," he said, as the crowd - including men, women and children - responded by waving Indonesian and Palestinian flags and shouting "boycott!"Jakarta police spokesman Argo Yuwono said the protesters marched peacefully about 3km from the National Monument Park to the US embassy.Some local media reported that the number of demonstrators was double the police estimate.Head of Muslim leaders' council, Ma'ruf Amin, said: "Let's fight together with Govt and the world for the freedom of Palestine through political, diplomatic and economic ways."
Thousands rally in Pakistan against     US's move to declare Jerusalem Israel's capital:AFP
Karachi: Thousands of Islamists have rallied in two major cities in Pakistan to condemn US president Donald Trump for declaring Jerusalem Israel's capital.Supporters of the Jamaat-e-Islami party in Karachi and advocates of US-wanted Islamist Hafiz Saeed in Lahore dispersed peacefully after rallying Sunday for the Palestinian cause.Protests have persisted in Pakistan since Trump's announcement angered Muslims across the world.The chief of Jamaat-e-Islami, Sirajul Haq, called on all Muslim nations to suspend diplomatic ties with the US until it reconsiders its Jerusalem decision.Hafiz Saeed said that Muslims the world over should put aside any differences and unite around the cause of "liberating" Jerusalem.
Opposing Trump, Erdogan says Turkey will open embassy in East Jerusalem
Turkey will open an embassy in East Jerusalem, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday, days after leading calls at a summit of Muslim leaders for the world to recognise it as the capital of Palestine.“God willing, the day is close when officially, with God’s permission, we will open our embassy there,” Erdogan said, maintaining his fierce criticism of the US’ decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.Reuters
Arab media launch joint broadcast to support Jerusalem
Arab radio stations and TV channels will launch a joint broadcast on Sunday in a show of support for Jerusalem following a US move to recognise the holy city as Israel’s capital.“This is a message to [Donald] Trump that his declaration about Jerusalem is rejected,” Ahmed Assaf, the general supervisor of official Palestinian media, told Voice of Palestine Radio. “It’s also a message to Israel that Jerusalem belongs to Palestinians and Arab,” he said.He said a large number of Arab radio stations and satellite channels will take part in the transmission under the title “Jerusalem Unites Us”. official Palestine TV and Voice of Palestine radio station will host a number of Palestinian and Arab guests to speak about the importance of Jerusalem to Arabs and Muslims.AA/MEMO
Thousands protest Netanyahu, corruption in Tel Aviv, again
Thousands of people on Saturday marched in Tel-Aviv to protest Israel’s PM Benjamin Netanyahu over alleged corruption. For the third week in a row, the protesters gathered in Rotschild Boulevard, where they chanted slogans against Netanyahu, who was interrogated for “several hours” on Thursday at his Jerusalem residence as part of an ongoing corruption investigation.Since last year, Netanyahu has been the subject of criminal investigations in two separate corruption cases. He has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.The first case involves Hollywood producer Arnon Milchan, who was allegedly asked to purchase luxury items for Netanyahu and his wife Sara Netanyahu. middleeastmonitor
Saudi airstrike hits wedding ceremony in Yemen killing 10 women
Sanaa:Witnesses and health officials say an airstrike by a Saudi-led coalition has struck a wedding procession east of Yemen’s capital, killing 10 women.They say the Sunday airstrike targeted the women as they marched to a village in Maarib province. They said the bride was among the women, but it was not immediately clear whether she was wounded.It’s a tradition in rural Yemen for the bride’s female friends and relatives to escort her to the wedding ceremony, where the groom awaits.The witnesses and officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they feared retaliation or were not authorized to brief the media.AP


Civilians live a ‘nightmare’ in Syria’s Eastern Ghouta
Ongoing regime attacks on Syria’s Eastern Ghouta, a suburb of Damascus, are turning the life of civilians in the area into an endless nightmare.“Life under siege is a nightmare,” Abu Muhammed, a resident of Eastern Ghouta, told Anadolu Agency.Abu Muhammed has lost his wife in an attack by Bashar Al-Assad forces in the area.  “My child Karim was only one-month old when my wife was martyred,” he said.  The bereaved father said that his baby has also lost one of eyes and suffered head injuries in the attack.  The baby is now being looked after by his siblings, who are also at child-age.Um Ahmad, who survived the attack in which Karim’s mother was killed, said an artillery fire had led to her death.“Shortly after we left our home, a rocket struck next to us. The explosion hurled us around; when I came to myself, I woke up to see her body was in pieces,” she said.Um Ahmad said it has become very difficult to civilians to find food in the besieged region.“Our situation keeps getting worse. My children haven’t eaten anything since yesterday,” she said. “We got two kilos of barley yesterday of which we made bread and fed our children. Today, we have nothing to eat,” she cried.Home to some 400,000 civilians, Eastern Ghouta has been under siege by regime forces since Dec.2012. middleeastmonitor
Hoping to extend maritime reach, China lavishes aid on Pakistan town:Reuters
GWADAR: China is lavishing vast amounts of aid on a small Pakistani fishing town to win over locals and build a commercial deep-water port that the United States and India suspect may also one day serve the Chinese navy.Beijing has built a school, sent doctors and pledged about $500 million in grants for an airport, hospital, college and badly-needed water infrastructure for Gwadar, a dusty town whose harbour juts out into the Arabian Sea, overlooking some of the world's busiest oil and gas shipping lanes.The grants include $230 million for a new international airport, one of the largest such disbursements China has made abroad, according to researchers and Pakistani officials.The handouts for the Gwadar project is a departure from Beijing's usual approach in other countries. China has traditionally derided Western-style aid in favour of infrastructure projects for which it normally provides loans through Chinese state-owned commercial and development banks."The concentration of grants is quite striking," said Andrew Small, an author of a book on China-Pakistan relations and a Washington-based researcher at the German Marshall Fund think tank."China largely doesn't do aid or grants, and when it has done them, they have tended to be modest."Pakistan has welcomed the aid with open hands. However, Beijing's unusual largesse has also fuelled suspicions in the United States and India that Gwadar is part of China's future geostrategic plans to challenge US naval dominance.

Church blast in SW Pakistan kills 8, injures 44
KARACHI:At least eight people were killed and 44 injured, including women and children, when a church in southwestern Pakistan was stormed by heavily armed militants on Sunday, officials and local media reported.The blast took place at 12 noon when some 400 people were attending Sunday services at a church in Quetta, the capital of the southwestern Balochistan province, said Abdul Razzak Cheema, the province’s police chief.Nine of the injured are in critical condition, according to a spokesman of the civil hospital in Quetta.When four militants stormed the church, one blew himself up at the entrance, and another was shot dead by security forces, said Cheema.Two escaped, and following an operation to rescue the churchgoers, efforts are underway to apprehend the fugitives, he added.A female eyewitness told reporters that the blast occurred when people were in the middle of services.
Saudi releases Palestinian tycoon Sabih al-Masri
Saudi authorities on Sunday released Palestinian billionaire Sabih al-Masri, the chairman of Jordan’s largest lender Arab Bank, according to two family sources.Al-Masri was detained in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday for questioning after a business trip to the kingdom, but the sources said he was set free on Sunday.It remains unclear whether he had left for Amman or was still in Riyadh.World Bulletin
FLASH: VIEWS & NEWS
Rajasthan HC Upholds Conversion, Marriage of Payal Singhvi; Frames Guidelines To Check Forcible Conversion

‘Media got it all wrong’: Protests against Rajasthan hate crime spark fresh tensions in Udaipur:Abhishek Dey

Evangelical Christian Zionists, Armageddon and Trump's Jerusalem Resolution:Yvonne Ridley
For spouses of Indians with H-1B visa, Trump’s plans are a nightmare coming true


Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 7:11 PM)


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