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17 January 2018

17 Jan.ND: Muslims were cheated in name of Haj subsidy says AIMPLB /Muslims want open air carrier bid for Hajis



Evening NEWS DIGEST  
17 Jan.2018:29 Rabial Aakhir 1439:Vol:9, No:100
INDIA: Haj subsidy issue
Muslims were cheated in name of Haj subsidy: AIMPLB
Lucknow:Govt's decision on revoking Haj subsidy has no meaning as there was no such concession and Muslims were being cheated in its name,All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) said."The subsidy was not given to those going on Haj but it was for Air India that is running in losses. It was an eyewash. Muslims were cheated in the name of the subsidy," AIMPLB General Secretary Maulana Wali Rahmani told PTI."In normal days, tickets for Saudi Arabia come for Rs 32,000 but during Haj, Air India used to charge Rs 65,000 to Rs 1 lakh from those going for Haj. The fare will be less without subsidy," he said."Haj-bound Muslims are bulk purchasers of Air India tickets and so their fare should be less. It's rule of International Air Transport Association that if anyone is going for pilgrimage, he will be given 40%  discount.If the fare is not less, it should at least the same as on normal days," he said.   Shia Personal Law Board Chairman Yasoob Abbas, on the other hand, said the board favoured subsidy on Haj."The Govt  used to give subsidy to reduce loss of Air India. If the amount is now spent on education of Muslim children, it will be good but the poor who used to go to Haj will not do so now," he said.Samajwadi Party spokesman Rajendra Chowdhury said that Haj subsidy should not be revoked completely and facilities for those going for the annual pilgrimage should be increased.PTI
Haj pilgrims should be given liberty to choose airline: Zafaryab Jilani
Lucknow: AIMPLB leader claimed that while scrapping Haj subsidy is not an issue; pilgrims must be given the liberty to choose any airline of their choice.“We are not rejecting the Govt’s proposal to scrap subsidy for Haj pilgrims, we, along with several other Muslim organisations, will demand that pilgrims be allowed to fly with any airline of their choice. It has been observed that fares of Air India are double that of other carriers. Govt must permit Haj pilgrims to choose an airline of their choice,” AIMPLB’s Zafaryab Jilani told ANI.ANI 
Ending Haj subsidy discrimination towards Muslims: Maulana Khalid Saifullah
Lucknow: AIMPLB expressed its strong resentment against the central govt's decision to scrap haj subsidy from this year and termed it as discriminatory, unfair and undemocratic."The decision is undemocratic, discriminatory and unfair towards the minority community," said AIMPLB spokesperson Maulana Khalid Saifullah Rahmani."Haj subsidy was not an exception, and Muslims don't benefit alone.Govt  spends much more funds on other communities than what it spends in the name of Haj subsidy," said Maulana Rahmani, who is also the secretary of umbrella organisation of Muslim community."Subsidy was actually being provided to Air India," he said.However, some Muslim organisations welcomed the decision to end Haj subsidy completely from this year, as against SC's order of gradually abolishing it by 2022. They said that they had been opposing the subsidy for long but added that the decision should have been implemented from next year since process for Haj 2018 has already begun."Muslims organisations had been asking for scrapping subsidy since long as it was really not benefiting Muslims as much as it was bringing a bad name to the community," said Imam of Aishbagh Eidgah, Maulana Khalid Rashid Farangi Mahali. However, cleric demanded that the monopoly of Air India as the national carrier for Haj pilgrims should end and an open market tender should be floated for competitive pricing in airfare that would benefit hajis.  TOI
‘Subsidy compliant with Constitution’
Jamaat asks Govt to setup Haj Corporation, float global tender for airlines
New Delhi:In the backdrop of withdrawal of Haj subsidy, india’s leading Muslim body, Jamaat-e-Islami Hind JIH today urged the centre to setup Haj Corporation of India along the lines of Tabung Haji, Malaysia and floating a global tender for hiring private international airlines for Haj.Reacting over Govt  decision, the Secretary General of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind – Muhammad Salim Engineer said: “We are concerned at the decision of Govt  to abruptly end the so called Haj subsidy given to Muslim pilgrims travelling to Saudi Arabia for performing Haj. Although the decision is in line with the SC judgment of 2012 to slowly withdraw the subsidy by 2022, this step is incomplete. Moreover a false impression is being created that this subsidy was an appeasement of the Muslim community and a drag on tax payer’s money.But the reality is that this subsidy was a payment taken from the Indian Hajis and given to the national carrier Air India, which had a monopoly for ferrying Hajis to Saudi Arabia. With no announcement yet on removing the monopoly of Air India to ferry Hajis and with no scope for letting the pilgrims to purchase tickets from an airline of their choice, this decision to withdraw subsidy is bound to increase the overall cost of performing Haj which will impact many pilgrims from the poor and deprived sections of society.”He said, “Jamaat is therefore deeply concerned by the decision to withdraw Haj subsidy and urges the Govt  to spell out how it plans to permit other airlines to fly Hajis from India given the exorbitant prices our national carrier Air India charges Indian pilgrimages over the India-Saudi Haj route. We wish to remind the Govt of its duty to establish Haj Corporation of India along the lines of Tabung Haji, Malaysia and floating a global tender for hiring private international airlines for Haj”.theindianawaaz
Withdraw Air India as official carrier of Haj pilgrims: Hyderabad Muslim leaders
Hyderabad: Withdrawal of the Haj subsidy by the Union Govt  will not affect pilgrims in the state all that much, according to the State Haj Committee officials.“The previous year, no subsidy was granted to pilgrims embarking from Hyderabad. Pilgrims whose airfare crossed Rs 65,000 were given subsidy last year, said professor S.A. Shukhoor, special officer, Telangana State Haj Committee. In 2016, pilgrims from TS received a subsidy of Rs 16,000 each. “Since 2012, following the Supreme Court ruling, Govt has been reducing the subsidy component, but it has not largely affected pilgrims,” said professor Shukhoor. All India Sunni Ulema Board chairman and president, Maulana Syed Shah Hameed Hussain Shuttari, said that Muslims who are economically strong and can afford the pilgrimage have been asked to perform it. “So it will not affect people to a large extent. But at the same time, subsidy for other communities should also be withdrawn,” he said. TS Haj Committee wants the Union Govt  to stop making Air India the official carrier for Haj pilgrims from this country because it charges much more. Tehreek Muslim Shabban president Mohammed Mustaq Malik said that if the Haj subsidy is scrapped, it may not have much impact. “But at the same time, sincere efforts should be made to bring down the airfare by changing the travel policy. Govt  is trying to bail out Air India at the cost of Muslim pilgrims.”Deccan Chronicle
Haj subsidy: Muslims want open carrier bid
Hyderabad:Muslim leaders have welcomed Centre's decision to do away with Haj subsidy from this year, but demanded the Haj Committee of India be given a free hand to call for international tenders and to award contract to the lowest bidding airlines to ferry pilgrims to Saudi Arabia.Muslim leaders have also demanded that the Centre utilise money saved from the Haj subsidy on education of Muslim girls. They said that since Haj is obligatory only on Muslims, who have financial and other resources to undertake the journey, the withdrawal of subsidy would not matter. However, they felt that the so-called subsidy was introduced only to help Air India, which enjoys a monopoly over ferrying about 1.5 lakh pilgrims to Saudi Arabia. Air fares are simply jacked up during the season.Jamaat-e-Islami Hind head (Telangana and Odisha) Hamid Mohammad Khan said the subsidy only helped compensate loss-making Air India. "There should be open bids and airlines that bid the lowest should be awarded contract," he said. Journalist Fazil Hussain Parvez said if Air India's monopoly is removed pilgrims will save a lot.Not all stakeholders were happy, NSUI national secretary Aamer Javeed called move "another act against Muslims". He said, "It will be a serious setback for underprivileged Muslims." MESCO honorary secretary Fakruddin Mohammad said subsidy should be used for better facilities for pilgrims. Salarjung Museum board member Syed Zakir Hussain said subsidy should empower Muslim girls.TOI
Withdraw Air India as official carrier of Haj pilgrims: Muslim leaders
TN govt opposes Centre’s cancellation of Haj subsidy, demands review
Tamil Nadu Govt opposed the Centre’s move to end Haj subsidy given to Muslims, saying that it will ask Govt to “reconsider this”.CM  Edappadi Palaniswami said, “I have just seen the news that the Centre has rejected the Haj subsidy. We will ask Centre to reconsider this.”Slamming the Central Govt’s move, DMK Working President MK Stalin tweeted, “The regressive decision of BJP led Central Govt to end #Hajjsubsidy, in spite of its constitutionally having been upheld by the Supreme Court is condemnable. The efforts by BJP to alter our nation’s trajectory away from its secular ideals is insidious.”In addition to the ruling AIADMK, other prominent parties have also condemned the cancellation. Tamil Nadu Congress Committee chief S Thirunavukkarasar, head of Tamil Maanila Congress GK Vasan, Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam Chief Vaiko, Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam Chief Vijayakanth, Pattali Makkal Katchi Chief S Ramadoss, Thamimun Ansari of Manithaneya Jananayaga Katchi were among those who condemned the move.thenewsminute
Haj Subsidy Withdrawal: What About Funds Given For Hindu Pilgrimages, Asks Owaisi
Attacking the BJP for calling Haj subsidy a form of Muslim appeasement and vote bank politics, AIMIM head Asaduddin Owaisi claimed the party's Govt in UP  gave funds for pilgrimages, and wanted to know if that would be stopped. Funds are also given for the Kumbh Mela, while the Congress Govt in Karnataka gives grants to those who undertake 'Chardham Yatra', Owaisi claimed, adding he himself had demanded withdrawal of the Haj subsidy long ago."Haj subsidy this year is (Rs) 200 crore & it would have been phased out by 2022 as per SC order, since 2006 I have been demanding that should be removed & used for Muslim girls education upliftment," Owaisi tweeted.Owaisi, in another tweet, asked if BJP Govt in UP  would stop the funds, which he said, are given for pilgrimage to Ayodhya, Kashi and other temple towns."#Haj Subsidy BJP /RSS had called It appeasement, vote Bank Pol my Qs to BJP will you bring a Bill in parliament remove Article 290A of Constitution, Will BJP Tell Yogi govt to stop 800 crore for pilgrimage to Ayodhya,Kashi,Mathura 1.5 lakh to each Manasarovar yatri?" he asked."Haj Subsidy 3 Qs to BJP/RSS Why did Haryana Govt  give 1 Crore to Dera Sacha Sauda was it for electoral appeasement? 4qs why did Modi govt gave grant of 100 crore to MP govt for Simhastha Maha Kumbh & MP govt had spend 3,400 crore was this not appeasement," Owaisi said in a series of tweets.Claiming that the Congress Govt  in Karnataka gave Rs 20,000 to each pilgrim who undertook 'Chardham Yatra', Owaisi asked whether it was not "appeasement of majority".Would NDA Govt  "walk the talk" by allocating enough funds for the education of Muslims girls, he asked."I challenge the Modi Govt  to walk the talk by allocating 2,0000 crores for Muslim girls scholarships...Will wait and see in next budget 18-19," he said.PTI/out look
Haj subsidy: ‘Hasty’ decision evokes protest in Kerala
Malappuram:The decision to withdraw subsidy for Haj pilgrimage from this year on by the union Govt has drawn mixed response in the state. The state Govt , state Haj panel and majority of Muslim organisations have registered protest against the haste of union Govt  in the issue as the subsidy was anyhow going to be stopped completely by 2023 as per an earlier Supreme Court order.  “The union Govt  acted in a haste that may harm the secular nature of our country. While the current paltry subsidy amount of `10,000 was going to be stopped within five years, withdrawing this in haste may create a feeling of targeting minorities, especially Muslims. People cannot be blamed if they take this as an anti-secular move by the central Govt ,” said minister in charge of Haj in the state Dr. K.T. Jaleel.Kerala State Haj Committee is neither ready to welcome the move nor protest against it.“There is no place for protests in raising this issue as Haj is mandatory only for those who have sufficient means to undertake the pilgrimage,” said the Haj panel chairman Thodiyur Muhammed Kunhi Musliyar.  “This should be considered as an assault against the secularism. Haj subsidy is a benefit of secularism like all other subsidies for various pilgrimages. Though it was not a right, we have to protest against the way by which the union Govt  has acted to stop it by superseding the Supreme Court order to do away with the subsidy completely in phases by 2023,” he said.Former Haj panel chairman and general secretary of Samastha Kerala Jamiyatul Ulema, Alikutty Musliyar said that the union Govt ’s move can be welcomed. deccanchronicle
Withdrawal of Haj subsidy will make Israeli PM happy: IUML
Tiruchi: IUML chief KM Kader Mohideen said that withdrawal of subsidy on Haj pilgrimage by Modi Govt will make visiting Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu happy.He pointed out that the announcement had been made when MNetanyahu was on an official tour to India. The arrangement introduced by ex-PM Indira Gandhi was nothing but shouldering the difference of fare between air and ship travel to Haj.The announcement would put an end to wrong propaganda and attempts to demean the Haj pilgrimage by the BJP, he added.thehindu
CPM says Centre's 'sudden withdrawal' of Haj subsidy arbitrary, motivated by other considerations
New Delhi: CPM alleged that the govt's move to withdraw the subsidy for Haj was "arbitrary and motivated by other considerations."Govt stopped the subsidy for the annual pilgrimage "abruptly". The SC had in 2012 said the subsidy should be phased out over 10 years, it said. "The sudden withdrawal of the subsidy seems arbitrary and motivated by other considerations," a party statement read. CPM asserted it never supported "state subsidy or funding of pilgrimages".After this move, there should be no "central or state Govt  funding" for subsidies and grants for pilgrimages, it said.PTI
Modi troubling Muslims, says Lalu on Haj subsidy removal
RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav, who has been sentenced to 3-and-a-half years in jail in a fodder scam case, on Wednesday launched a scathing attack on PM  Narendra Modi.Referring to the removal of Haj subsidy by Modi Govt , RJD supremo said that PM  was troubling Muslim people with his actions.zeenews
OTHERS
Israel prepares for air bridge to India over Saudi: media reports
Air India has signed a contract with Israeli airlines El Al to launch direct flights between Delhi and Tel Aviv, passing through the Saudi skies, Felesteen.ps reported.Citing a report by Israeli paper Yedioth Ahronoth, Felesteen.ps said that the two airlines signed the contract in the wake of Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to India.Yedioth Ahronoth said that Netanyahu’s visit to India aimed to reach deals related to energy, technology, cinema and other sectors, noting that the “air bridge through Saudi is considered a normalisation step without introductions.”Israeli politicians, according to Yedioth Ahronoth, said that the contract between the Indian and Israeli airlines was the most important achievement of Netanyahu’s visit to India because it would cut two hours out of an eight-hour flight, leading to a reduction in the costs of flight tickets and aircraft fuel.The paper said that India and Israel are waiting for Saudi to accept the passage of the aircrafts owned by 2 airlines through its skies.middleeastmonitor
Netanyahu: US embassy move to Jerusalem will take place in 2018
Israeli PM  Benjamin Netanyahu has said that the US will relocate their embassy to Jerusalem within the year, following President Donald Trump’s recognition of the city as the capital of Israel last month, Haaretz has reported.Currently on an official trip to India, Netanyahu directed his comments at reporters accompanying him earlier today and said his predictions were based on a “solid assessment”. “There are 3 things happening in the US that never happened before,” Netanyahu said. “One is moving the US embassy. My solid assessment is that it will go much faster than you think: within a year from now.”He then praised the US stance on Iran and Trump Administration’s announcement that it would be cutting aid to UN Palestinian refugee agency UNRWA. “Secondly, there is a dramatic change vis-a-vis Iran. The president has made time [to consider a] necessary change in relation to the nuclear program. You know that this will happen. Cancelling the agreement is what he said he plans to do.” “The third thing is to challenge UNRWA for the first time. For 70 years the organization perpetuates Palestinian narrative and the abolition of Zionism, and this is the first time they [the Americans] challenge this. It’s good that they are doing something that is challenging this organization,” he concluded.middleeastmonitor
Netanyahu in Gujarat: Grand roadshow culminates at Sabarmati Ashram, Israeli PM describes Gandhi as ‘humanity’s great prophet'
PM Narendra Modi and his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu today held a roadshow in the city under a heavy security blanket as thousands of people lined up along the route to greet them. After arriving in Modi’s home state, the two leaders, along with the Israeli PM ’s wife Sara Netanyahu, set out in a car from the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Airport here. Around 50 stages were erected on the roadside along the stretch to showcase performances by troupes of different states to welcome the guests. People carrying Indian and Israeli flags stood in large numbers on both sides of the tastefully decorated road. Modi and Netanyahu waved at the people, who greeted them with loud cheers. The roadshow concluded at Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram, after traversing 8 km. Gandhi had spent a large part of his life in the Sabarmati Ashram after he returned to India from South Africa to lead India’s non-violent freedom struggle.  He left the ashram in 1930 when he took out the Dandi March from here, with a vow not to return to the place till India got Independence. During his visit to the ashram, Israeli PM described Mahatma Gandhi as one of the great prophets of humanity.In a four-line message jointly signed by Netanyahu and his wife Sara in the visitor’s log book at the ashram, the Israeli dignitaries said their “visit was inspiring”.  “An inspiring visit to the hearth of one of humanity’s great prophets of inspiration- Mahatma Gandhi-,” Netanyahu wrote in the book. Indiatvnews
Ahmedabad: Netanyahu doesn’t stop to greet, Indian Jews upset
Radical Islam can 'upset' international system: Netanyahu
New Delhi:The threat of radical Islam and its terrorist offshoots can "upset" the international system, Israeli PM  Benjamin Netanyahu said, batting for stronger ties between India and Israel to overcome the challenge.Addressing the inaugural session of 'Raisina Dialogue' here, Netanyahu hailed India as Israel's "natural friend and partner", drawing a wide smile from PM  Narendra Modi, who was in the audience. Netanyahu said closer ties between democracies was essential to secure the common future of humanity at a time "our way of life and the quest for modernity and innovation" are being challenged. "Most notably the quest for modernity, the quest for innovation is being challenged by radical Islam and its terorist offshoots from a variety of corners and this can upset the international system.One of the ways to overcome such a challenge is to strengthen the relation between our 2 great denmocracies. The alliances of democracies is important to secure our common future," Netanyahu said, addressing the inaugural session of the 3-day conference where a range of geopolitical issues will be discussed.Netanyahu began his 16-minute speech by identifying military strength, economic prowess and political power as the prerequisites for the development of a nation, factors which he said were behind the Jewish nation's rise from the "ashes"."The weak don't survive, the strong survive. You make peace, alliances with the strong. You are able to maintain peace by being strong," he said.Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar, former President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai, union ministers VK Singh, Jayant Sinha and Congress MP Shashi Tharoor were present at the event, organised jointly by Observer Research Foundation and MEA.The theme of the dialogue this year is 'Managing Disruptive Transitions: Ideas, Institutions and Idioms'. The event has an impressive lineup of more than 150 speakers and over 550 delegates.Army chief General Bipin Rawat and Navy chief Admiral Sunil Lanba will address a session, along with Admiral Harry Harris, Commander, US Pacific Command, General Chris Deverell, Joint Forces Commander, UK, among others, tomorrow.PTI
Netanyahu seeks alliances for peace, to fight radical Islam
Radical Islamic terror a threat to modernity: Israeli PM
Army chief Rawat on terror: Put curbs on Internet, social media; people won’t like it, but have to take a call
New Delhi: At the third edition of the Raisina Dialogue that was attended by PM Narendra Modi, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, Army chief General Bipin Rawat among others, speaking at the occasion, General Rawat questioned the increasing use of technology among terrorist groups. He also expressed his concerns about the misuse of nuclear and chemical weapons by terrorist groups and called it ‘A disaster for humanity’ if it falls into the wrong hands.While speaking at Raisina Dialogue, Army chief said, “Terrorists are using systems which are highly technology enabled and transcending international borders. We need to disrupt terrorists & their sponsors.” General Rawat also said, “Need to identify nations who are sponsors.”He further continued, “Threat of nuclear and chemical weapons falling into the hands of terrorists can be a disaster for humanity.”“Putting some checks & curbs on Internet & social media that terrorist organisations always resort to, in a democratic country people won’t like it, but have to take a call on whether we want safe & secure environment or willing to accept curbs temporarily so terrorism can be dealt with,” said the Army chief.financialexpress
Aadhaar may cause death of citizens' civil rights,petitioner tells SC
New Delhi: Aadhaar Card may cause the death of citizens' civil rights, senior lawyer Shyam Divan said before 5-judge constitution bench of the Supreme Court, on Wednesday.In the ongoing hearing of the matter related to the constitutional validity of linking Aadhaar card to a number of Govt  schemes, Divan who is appearing for the petitioners, said that a people's constitution was being converted into a state's Constitution and it was incorrect to take people's biometric data for Aadhaar Card.The bench, headed by CJI Dipak Misra and 4 other judges Justices AM Khanwilkar, Adarsh Kumar Sikri, DY Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan, was hearing a number of petitions challenging validity of the identification system.Since the inception of the Aadhaar card, its validity and possible leakages of data have surfaced time and again. The apex court has also received petitions regarding the linkage of this 12-digit number with mobile phones, bank accounts and so on, the last date for which was extended to March 31 this year.ANI
Aadhaar is designed to ‘tether citizens to electronic leash’, SC told
SC Aadhaar hearing: Court adjourned for the day, to continue tomorrow
After a heated day of debate in the Supreme Court over Aadhaar, the court has adjourned for the day and the hearing will continue tomorrow. moneycontrol
Justice Arun Mishra recuses himself from hearing Loya case
New Delhi: Supreme Court judge Justice Arun Mishra has recused himself from the controversial case of Special CBI Judge Justice Loya’s death.The incident has come as a first level of victory for the four rebelling supreme court judges who raised the issue of ‘partial dissemination’ and allocation of special cases by CJI Justice Dipak Misra, to some chosen Judges. During the last hearing of Justice Loya death case, Justice Arun Misra said, “Let the documents be placed on record within 7 days and if it is considered appropriate copies be furnished to the petitioners. Put up before the appropriate bench”. The phrase, ‘put up before appropriate bench’ is generally used by a bench which wants to recuse, is an admission that that it is currently not being heard by an appropriate bench and must be placed before the Chief Justice for his order, assigning it to some other judge.The statement came when Justice Arun Mishra was hearing 2 petitions filed by Congress party activist Tehseen Poonawalla, and Bandhuraj Sambhaji Lone, a Mumbai-based journalist; seeking an independent probe in Loya’s death case.abplive
Justice Arun Mishra wants CJI Misra to reassign Judge Loya case to ‘appropriate bench’
Could Judge Loya case to a new bench help resolve SC crisis ?indiasamvad
No resolution in sight: The SC crisis is far from over
There seems to be no resolution in sight for the crisis in the Supreme Court following open questioning of the functioning of CJI Dipak Misra as administrator of the court by his four colleagues in the collegium. The proposed peace talks over lunch today between Misra and Justices J. Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, Madan B. Lokur and Kurian Joseph did not take place as Chelameswar did not attend court.Chelameswar was on leave today as he was unwell. A notice was issued regarding the non-sitting of court number two, which is presided over by Chelameswar, stating that all matters listed before it will not be taken up today. It is not clear if he will be able to attend the court tomorrow. However, as per the cause list of the Supreme Court for tomorrow, cases are listed before chambers of the second senior-most judge of the court.Misra had met the four 'rebel' judges on Tuesday, but little headway was made in that initial round of peace negotiations. The four judges felt that Misra has so far been unable to offer any concrete proposal for resolution of the structural issues that they have raised. As the judges ended their brief meeting on Tuesday, they decided that they would meet again today, possibly over lunch. The four judges are learnt to have had a meeting last evening at Chelameswar's residence.theweek
CJI Misra likely to meet 3 ‘rebel’ judges to break ice, unwell Chelameswar on leave
Jamat-e-Islami Hind’s statement regarding growing fascism not a good omen for India: Soz
Srinagar: Former Union Minister and senior Congress leader, Prof Saif-ud-din Soz on Tuesday said that Jamat-e-Islami Hind’s statement regarding ‘growing fascism’ in India should be a matter of great concern to all Indians.“It should be a matter of great concern to all Indians, irrespective of their religious denominations, that Jamat-e-Islami Hind is extremely fearful about growing fascism in India and, in its opinion, the future of democracy is bleak in India,” Soz said in statement, adding that “when I saw the statement, I felt alarmed on this development.” “I have known Jamat-e-Islami Hind as one of the most transparent Muslim organizations in India, showing utmost respect to the Constitution of India. Jamat-e-Islami Hind had all along taken the position that since all people are equal before the Constitution of India, no community or individual should be fearful about the future,” he said.Soz said that now this organization too has expressed apprehensions that the future of India’s democracy is not safe and the present dispensation has decided openly to promote majoritarianism and all minorities are at the receiving end.“This democratically functioning organization is now of the opinion that it is not that India is growing into fascism, but the fascism is already here,” he said. “It is not a good omen for the country as this organization is disciplined and it has always been working transparently and democratically. This organization by its own constitution stands committed to promote human brotherhood in India,” he added.freepresskashmir
Jamat-e-Islami Hind doubting future of Indian democracy matter of concern: Soz
Shia, Sunni clerics file FIR against UP Shia Board chief
New Delhi;Shia and Sunni clerics unitedly filed an FIR against the UP  Shia Waqf Board chief for allegedly spreading hatred against the Muslim community and its educational institutions. At a press conference at New Delhi, they lashed out at Wasim Rizvi for stating that madrassas are breeding grounds for terrorists. “The remarks of Rizvi are patently false and have been deliberately and dishonestly made as part of a conspiracy. This is part of a larger conspiracy to create a rift and animosity between the Hindus and the Muslims and also between Shia and Sunni communities. We are filing an FIR against him,” Shia cleric Syed Kalbe Jawad Naqvi said.PTI
Students should be taught Gita, Quran, Bible twice a week: Union minister Maneka Gandhi
School students must be taught from six major religious texts – including the Gita, Quran and Bible – to inculcate tolerance for different faiths, Union women and child development (WCD) minister Maneka Gandhi has said.“These days, there is a lot of religion-based tension. One of the reasons is that children don’t know enough of other religions, and operate on blind hatred. Teaching from scriptures of major religions such as Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Islam will help dispel religious stereotypes that students develop at a young age,” Gandhi said.Union minister, who raised the matter at the Central Advisory Board of Education meeting on Monday, now plans to ask the HRD ministry to conduct classes on the six religious scriptures at least twice a week.“How many of us have read our religious scriptures? I have read the Quran. How many of us know that Prophet Mohammed was anti-war? We were taught moral science during our school days, but it is not done anymore,” Gandhi said.HT
Yogi to chair meet on ministers of minority affairs from north Indian states
New Delhi: In a choice that is also a political statement by the Centre, UP  CM  Yogi Adityanath will preside over a meeting of ministers for minority affairs of north Indian states to discuss development plans for minority communities in Lucknow on January 18.Union minority affairs minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi will attend the meeting to which minority affairs ministers from UP, Punjab, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Haryana, J&K , Delhi, Chandigarh and Himachal Pradesh have also been invited."We shall discuss how minority communities can be empowered without appeasement," Naqvi said in what seems to be a bid to signal a departure from traditional sops such as Haj subsidies that have been wound up and instead turn the focus on facilities such as health, education and banking.timesofindia
Several Muslims  beaten by VHP men: Gujarat minority rights body
Ahmedabad: A minority rights organization has expressed anguish at a group of Muslims allegedly being beaten and their vehicles vandalized by VHP workers in Paldi on Monday after the mysterious disappearance of Pravin Togadia.Alpsankhyak Adhikar Manch (AAM), minority rights body, submitted a memorandum to the district collector stating that Muslims were beaten by VHP workers and sought legal actions in the case. The memorandum, submitted by city-based advocate and activist Shamshad Pathan, stated that VHP workers had beaten innocent Muslims on Monday when Hindu right-wingers were trying to block roads in protest."VHP had held a road block programme at Paldi Crossroads after Togadia, who has Z+ security, went missing on Jan.15. At that time, an elderly Muslim man with a beard was beaten and his 2-wheeler was damaged by VHP workers. VHP workers had also smashed glasses of autorickshaws belonging to Muslims.Many Muslim autorickshaw drivers were saved from the mob fury only due to the intervention of police. The entire incident was captured on CCTV cameras installed by city traffic police. VHP workers resorted to violence and tried to foment communal hatred," reads the memorandum submitted to collector.TOI
‘Love jihad’ assault: Baghpat police keeps names of accused under wraps
Meerut: Three days after a Muslim youth and his two brothers were beaten up allegedly by members of Hindu Yuva Vahini and VHP at a Baghpat court complex where the youth was to get married to a Hindu girl from Punjab,Baghpat police is keeping the names of the ‘identified’ accused under wraps. The police had filed a case under relevant sections of the IPC against ‘unidentified’ men and had said that the men will be identified from the videos at hand and action will be taken. On Tuesday, the police claimed to have identified the accused but refused to give away the names of the accused. No arrest has been made in the case so far.While the station house officer of Baghpat police station denied that the identification process has been completed, SP Baghpat said that the accused have been identified but the names cannot be disclosed.timesofindia
Muslim councillor from Meerut hands over cow to Police, says “it is a dangerous animal”
Fed up by the constant attacks on Muslims across the country in the name of so-called cow protection, a Muslim from Meerut-Abdul Gaffar Khan-handed over his cow to the local police station. In conversation with TCN, Khan said, “I felt horrible doing this…this cow came to me as a calf and I have reared it since to the present time where it a fully grown cow. It is very dear to me, but given the present circumstances where Muslims are attacked on such a consistent basis, I believe that it is a dangerous animal for a Muslim to keep. I am scared and hence decided to hand over the cow.”Confirming the decision of Khan, Nechandi Police Station-in charge Sanjay Kumar said that two people who had bought cows were harassed and beaten by members of right-wing Hindu organisations. Even the people who sold the cow were harassed by the same people, following which Khan, who is the local councillor, decided to take the step.According to Azeez, one of the buyers, “we bought two cows from Mannu Singh and asked him to drop the cows at the dairy since it was dangerous for us to transport them. However, members of the Bajrang Dal attacked us regardless and we were taken to the local police station. The attackers were led by BJP councillor Rohit Rohilla. The police failed to take action despite the fact that we had a receipt of the payment of Rs 34,000 signed by both parties. One of the cows was eight months pregnant while the other was five months pregnant. Both the cows were confiscated from us.”It was this incident that led to Khan submitting his cow to the police station as a form of protest.TwoCircles
Bengal imams oppose ‘sops’ from Centre, state Govts
Kolkata:All Bengal Minority Youth Federation and committee of imams in West Bengal said on Tuesday they do not need special "favours" from the Centre and state Govt s.They want the Govt s to revise rents of the 40,000-odd Wakf estates spread over Bengal so that Wakf Board can take care of imams and muezzins.The speakers, though, addressed the audience on a dais set in white and blue — a mix that is to the liking of West Bengal CM  Mamata Banerjee."The monthly honorarium of Rs 1,000 to imams is of little value at current market prices. Instead, let Govt s update the rents of the Wakf estates. The Wakf Board can then take care of the imams and muezzins on its own," said federation general secretary Kamaruzzaman. timesofindia
UP: Dalits threaten protests after 22-yr-old attacked by Hindu group activists
Muzaffarnagar:Dalit outfits have threatened to launch an agitation after a 22-year-old lower caste man was allegedly assaulted and forced to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’ by activists of a right-wing Hindu group in west UP ’s Muzaffarnagar, officials said.A video clip of the assault on Vipin Kumar emerged on Wednesday, sparking caste tension in the region that saw clashes between Dalits and Thakurs in May last year.Police said the incident occurred on Jan.14 when Vipin was assaulted at Megha-Shikarpur village, allegedly for leading a group of Dalits planning to convert to Buddhism and had removed portraits of Hindu deities from their homes.HT
Centre seeks changes in CrPC, Evidence Act to make phones’ images,videos, CCTV footages of riots admissible
New Delhi: Centre is seeking amendments in certain Sections of Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) and the Indian Evidence Act to make images and video recordings on cellular phones as also CCTV footages during riots admissible as evidence for effective prosecution of rioters.The Union Home Ministry has sent a proposal for amendments in Section 321 and 82 A of CrPC and 111 B of Indian Evidence Act and also sought an opinion from the Law Ministry. While Section 82 of the CrPC relates to proclamation of an absconding accused, Section 321 pertains to withdrawal of an accused from prosecution. Section 111 of Evidence Act refers to proof of good faith in transactions between two or more parties. newindianexpress
Waqf Board submits draft policy in Delhi HC for management of Khusro park to check encroachment
With the Delhi High Court expressing concern over rampant encroachment inside and around Amir Khusro Park, which is also known as Tikona graveyard, the Delhi Waqf Board on Tuesday submitted a draft policy for managing the property as a “model green graveyard” while addressing the concerns of graveyard and space crunch.The waqf board said the draft policy was necessary to be implemented by a managing committee for the regulation of burials in this graveyard and proposes against permanent graves. The draft policy contains measures to regulate security, burial, financial aspects etc, which the board said,were necessary since the land of graveyard requires to be protected from future encroachment and keep it in good shape. “If implemented, this policy shall not only ensure that this graveyard becomes a model graveyard but shall also act as a harbinger for the reforms of other graveyards in the city, thereby reducing the pressure on the resources,” it said. While preparing this policy, the board has made efforts not to interfere with the religious part of burial practices. It is to be noted that till date there are no set rules or policy followed for management of graveyards in Delhi and they are not recycled in general, with the waqf board saying there is a hesitant consensus on the reuse of graves and construction of permanent graves prevents further burial in the same grave. As per the draft policy, the total area covered by the structures would not exceed 10% of the total area falling within the boundary walls. This 10% includes the existing dargahs and mosques.livelaw.in
Report on illegal sale of Waqf property tabled in Delhi
Karnataka:Right-Wing Youth Arrested for Harassment, Communal Propaganda Against SFI Leaders
A 22-year old man has been arrested after being accused of harassing and threatening Madhuri and Hamza, leaders of SFI in Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka.Harish Devadiga alias Kakkinje Harish, from Belthangady in Dakshina Kannada district, was taken into custody after messages targeting Madhuri Bolar, SFI Dakshina Kannada District Secretary, and Hamza Kinya, SFI Dakshina Kannada District Joint Secretary were circulated on social media.Right-wing vigilantes circulated WhatsApp messages about the two student leaders, "warning" Hamza Kinya against "roaming around on bike with our Hindu girls in broad daylight".One of the WhatsApp messages being circulated contained a picture of Madhuri along with her friends including Hamza, with the text (in Kannada):“Hamza Kinya is roaming around on bike with our Hindu girls in broad daylight… If he is further seen roaming around with Hindu girls, Hindu organisations must reply to him (act on him.)”The picture was taken while Madhuri, first year M.Com. student, was travelling in a bus to a camp along with fellow activists Hamza, Suhas Adiga and Ganesh Bolar. They had shared the picture on Facebook.On 9 Jany, Madhuri met the Mangaluru City Police Commissioner TR Suresh at his office and filed a complaint with the cyber crime cell of the Mangaluru city police. She was accompanied by her mother Bharati Bolar, herself a member of the Beedi Workers Union affiliated to the CPI(M).Newsclick
Viral video: UP BJP leader threatens police for filing case against Hindus
Meerut: A local BJP leader in UP 's Meerut has been caught on camera bullying the police force to withdraw a case against him and others.The leader, Kapil Dutt Sharma, had been named in a case linked to a communal flare-up, according to an NDTV report.In the video, Sharma shouts at a senior police official saying, "How did you file a case against Hindus?"Widely circulated in western UP , the video was taken on a mobile phone camera last Saturday.Meerut district police chief, Manzil Saini said that a detailed report was sent to the police headquarters in this connection."We have sent an intelligence report on this individual to our senior officers... There have been instances of misbehaviour earlier too", she added. Sharma, a local BJP leader and formerly also an office bearer in the local party unit, barged into the office of Man Singh Chauhan, a senior police official in Meerut.During a flare-up between Hindu and Muslim shopkeepers on Thursday, Sharma went to a market area, sided with one community and later went to the police station in favour of that community."Will these people not call anyone? Did I get to the spot and create a ruckus? I was helping the police in fact. And then I find out that there is a case against me? What enmity are you taking out against me? And what enmity do you have against Hindus, that you filed a case against them?" Sharma is seen telling the senior police officer, insisting that the Hindus were living in a part of the city where they were in a minority, and suppressed. In the video, the officer is continuously shouted down by Sharma, who says, "This has happened because of you, and you are filing a case against our people? You don't know Meerut's history. You don't know?""What will you say? You tell me how you filed a case against Hindus? You think we are 'bhaade ke tattoos' (hired men who can be taken lightly)? How did you file a case against Hindus?" an aggressive Sharma continued. Police officers have confirmed the leader is known for such hooliganism.Asian Age
MP: Police stop ABVP, Sanatan Sangh activists from entering Christian college
Vidisha police on Tuesday arrested Updesh Rana, a self-styled member of the hitherto unknown organisation Vishwa Sanatan Sangh and 24 activists of ABVP when they tried to enter the area to participate in a pre-announced programme of 'Bharata Mata Aarti' in a Christian missionary college. According to the district SP, the arrests were made under preventive sections. MP Catholic Diocesan Schools' Association on Monday had moved the Jabalpur High Court seeking protection. During the court hearing on Monday, Govt had promised security to the association following which unprecedented security arrangements were made outsideall Christian missionary schools and colleges in district. ABVP on Jan. 4 had performed the aarti in many schools and colleges in the district and were allegedly stopped from performing the same inside St Mary's College campus by the management on grounds that communal tension was being incited under the garb of performing the aarti.ABVP and Vishwa Sanatan Sangh activists had also barged inside St Mary's campus on January 4 and vandalised property. The activists who were pushed out of the campus by the Police had vowed to return back to the campus on Jan.16.ABVP tried to galvanise support for today's aarti across all colleges in the district but in the end not many turned up."Only a handful of activists numbering around two dozen tried to enter the city but we arrested them as preventive sections were in force following the Govt's assurance to the court on Monday," Vidisha SP said.india today
Amnesty postcard campaign against pellet guns in J&K
 Srinagar:Following global outrage over the indiscriminate use of pellets against civilian protesters, Amnesty International launched a postcard campaign advocating complete ban on the use of pellet gun in Kashmir Valley.Officials said campaign demands an independent investigation into cases of killings or serious injuries caused by the use of pellets against protesters in Kashmir. The human rights watchdog will submit signed postcards and a petition to CM Mehbooba Mufti. “Pellet-firing pump-action shotguns have been responsible for killing, blinding and injuring thousands of people in Kashmir. The campaign aims to bring people from across J&K to write postcards to the state CM,” said Amnesty International India, while launching campaign and online petition. Aakar Patel, Executive Director,Amnesty India said pellet gun, commonly used in bird hunting, has caused widespread damage and its repeated use has produced a generation of victims, many of whom have lost eyesight in both eyes. thecitizen
Terror funding case: Shabir Shah moves Delhi court for bail, wife alleges he is being 'slowly poisoned' in prison
New Delhi: A Delhi court directed the ED to file its reply to a fresh bail plea of Kashmiri separatist leader Shabir Shah in a money laundering case related to alleged terror financing, even as his wife claimed he was being "slowly poisoned" in the prison.In his bail application, the accused told the court that investigation in the case has been completed since the agency has filed its charge sheet and there was no chance for Shah to hamper the probe.Advocate MS Khan, appearing for Shah, told the court that no purpose will be served by keeping him in custody.Shah, who appeared before the court through video conference, also said he was lacking treatment inside the jail. "Trial is only going on because I am alive. If there is no Shah, there will be no trial," 62-year old Shah said.Meanwhile, Shah's wife Bilquies Shah, also moved an application before the court through the defence lawyer and claimed that her husband was suffering from various ailments and was on regular medicine for last six years.She alleged that Shah was facing difficulty in getting those medicines inside the jail and was now also suffering from sudden loss of consciousness."My husband had similar fainting attacks in Tihar Jail. Repeated requests were made to the jail authorities but no steps were taken in this regard. This is a clear indication of slow poisoning of my husband by the jail authorities," she told the court in her application.The court, meanwhile, initiated the trial and started recording the statement of the prosecution witnesses. It posted the matter for further hearing on 26 Feb.firstpost
Family of Kashmiri man arrested for 2000 Red Fort attacks claim their son is innocent, Hurriyat calls it a ‘conspiracy’
Srinagar: Delhi Police and Gujarat ATS arrested a Kashmiri man, said to be in his 30s, over his alleged involvement in 2000 Red Fort attack in New Delhi. Bilal Kawa was arrested from Indira Gandhi International airport. Police have said that he is suspected to be linked to LeT and a proclaimed offender in the case.Reacting to the arrest and the claims, family members of Bilal Kawa held a protest demonstration in the press colony Srinagar on Friday, alleging that their son is being implicated in the false case and he was going for treatment when he was arrested in Delhi.“He has been going to Delhi since last 17 years and he was never arrested and we don’t know why he has been arrested now,”  family members of Bilal told media persons during the protest demonstration.According to Bilal’s mother Fatima Begum, he was living a  normal life and was engaged in leather business and claimed they yet to know what charges he is being framed. “He is innocent. He is being framed,” she added.On Jan.11th a Delhi court remanded Bilal Ahmad Kawa to 10 days’ police custody. According to a report in The Hindu, the investigating officer in the case while seeking his police remand has submitted that Bilal was the kingpin of the attack and accused him of receiving money from Pakistan and other countries through hawala operators and the same were used in the Red Fort attack and other terror attacks in J&K by LeT. Another report in The Tribune confirmed that the Jammu Kashmir Police had not received any notice declaring him a proclaimed offender and no case was registered against him in the local police station.Hurriyat Conference (M) has condemned the arrest of Bilal and have claimed that he is being made a scapegoat ahead of 26 January and has sought unconditional release.TwoCircles
WORLD
Global NGOs criticise drastic US cuts of UNRWA funding
International NGOs have condemned the US Govt 's decision to cut more than half of its planned funding to the United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees.Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch, said in a Twitter post late on Tuesday that Washington was "holding Palestinian kids' humanitarian needs hostage to political agendas".Jan Egeland, secretary-general of the Norwegian Refugee Council, urged the US Govt  to reverse its decision announced on Tuesday to withhold $65m out of $125m aid package earmarked for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA)."The move will have devastating consequences for vulnerable Palestinian refugees across the Middle East, including hundreds of thousands of refugee children in the West Bank and Gaza, Lebanon, Jordan and Syria who depend on the agency for their education," he said in a statement on Tuesday."It will also deny their parents a social safety net that helps them to survive, and undermine the UN agency's ability to respond in the event of another flare-up in [Israeli-Palestinian] conflict."On Twitter, Egeland said: "Cutting aid to innocent refugee children due to political disagreements among well-fed grown men and women is a really bad politization of humanitarian aid. US holds back $65m aid to Palestinians." aljazeera
US cuts UNRWA funding by more than half
China county bans Muslim children from religious events: Reuters
Chinese Govt authorities have banned Muslim children from attending religious events during winter break, in a county in western China that is mostly populated by Muslims. The notification for the ban has been posted online by the education bureau, as authorities step up their suppression of religious freedoms.School students in Linxia county in Gansu province, home to many members of the Muslim Hui ethnic minority, are prohibited from entering religious buildings over their break, a district education bureau said, according to the notification.Students must also not read scriptures in classes or in religious buildings, the bureau said, adding that all students and teachers should heed the notice and work to strengthen political ideology and propaganda. China is an atheist, communist state.Reuters
Saudi King orders non-refundable deposit of $2 billion in Yemen's apex bank: Reuters
Saudi Arabia's King Salman ordered a deposit of $2 billion in Yemen's central bank to shore up the weak Yemeni currency, Rial, Saudi Govt said.The move was made a day after the Yemeni PM issued a public plea for funds to prop up the Yemeni currency and help stave off hunger in the country.
Rouhani: Gulf pressure on Qatar unacceptable, unfair
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani has expressed support for Qatar, dismissing any "unjust and unfair pressures" on Doha by its Arab neighbours, as he urged the Gulf countries to resolve their differences through dialogue and negotiations.His comments on Tuesday came as a regional diplomatic dispute has entered its eighth month.Iranian leader made the remarks during a meeting with the speaker of Qatar's Advisory Council, Ahmad bin Abdullah Al Mahmoud, in Tehran, the Iranian capital."We believe that any pressure on the Qatari Govt  and people is unacceptable, and if there are differences between the countries of the region, especially the neighbour countries, they should only be resolved through dialogue," Rouhani said on the sidelines of the Parliamentary Union of the OIC Member States (PUIC) Conference.aljazeera
Iran’s leader accuses Saudis of ‘treason’ against Muslims
Iran’s supreme leader accused Saudi rulers of committing “treason” against Muslims by aligning themselves with the US and Israel.Addressing parliamentary representatives from Islamic countries gathered in Tehran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said the US decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital was “a big mistake” and “doomed to failure”.“Regional Govt s that are cooperating with the United States and the Zionist regime to fight against Muslims are certainly committing treason. That is what Saudi Arabia is doing,” Khamenei said, according to his official website. Middleeastmonitor



FLASH: VIEWS & NEWS
Cancelling Haj Subsidy Is a Good Step, Now the Govt  Should Stop Spending on All Religions;Faizan Mustafa
Second Assassin, 4rth Bullet Petition on Gandhi Murder Still Live in Supreme Court: Next Hearing Feb 19: thecitizen
Hey Mr CM, Is Rape Now the New Normal For You in Haryana?RASHMI OBEROI
Bhima-Koregaon protests reflected acts that define Dalit consciousness and its agenda:Harish Wankhede
Judges must recuse themselves from hearing cases where there is potential conflict of interest:Dushyant Dave
Modi, Pawar and Deve Gowda as CMs led India-Israel ties:Nicolas Blarel, assistant professor at a Netherlands University
‘Birla-Sahara Diaries And Loya Case Are of Intense and Anxious Interest to Present Rulers’:MK VENU
RSS leader's diatribe against aggrieved judges vindicates the judges:Charu Kartikeya, catchnews
Haj 2018 likely to be costlier, but not because of subsidy abolition (News Analysis): IANS
Fact check: Will Haj subsidy withdrawal by Modi Govt  make pilgrimage costly for Muslims?financialexpress
Haj Subsidy is a Misnomer, It is based on Half-Truths, Ignorance and Ideology:Zakia Soman

Haj subsidy scrapped; will Modi govt stop ‘Hindu appeasement’ too? Zehra Shafi
Dropping the Idea of Islamic Banking in India Will Leave Millions Shortchanged:SUNIT ARORA
Why CJI Dipak Misra is being accused of derailing probe into medical bribery scam: ANURAG DEY
CJAR calls for In-House Inquiry against CJI Dipak Misra by five senior-most judges of the SC




Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:19 PM)

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