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Thursday, 30 August 2018

30 Aug ND: One nation, one election: Law Commission endorses proposal for simultaneous Lok Sabha, assembly polls/ Police probe into Kasganj violence 'grossly compromised', Muslims were 'selectively targeted', claims report by activists


NEWS DIGEST, MID-DAY  
30 Aug 2018:18 Zilhajj 1439: Vol: 10, No:96
INDIA
One nation, one election: Law Commission endorses proposal for simultaneous Lok Sabha, assembly polls
New Delhi :In its draft report submitted to the government, the Law Commission has endorsed simultaneous elections to Lok Sabha and state assemblies. Recommending changes in the Constitution and the electoral law to hold simultaneous polls, the panel said that it can prevent the country from being in constant election mode.Such an exercise, the draft report said, will save public money, help reduce the burden on administrative setup and security forces and ensure better implementation of government policies.It said if simultaneous polls are held, the administrative machinery of the country will be continuously engaged in developmental activities, “rather than in electioneering”. It, however, cautioned that “holding simultaneous elections is not possible within the existing framework of the Constitution”.This comes a week after Chief Election Commissioner O P Rawat categorically ruled out any possibility of holding simultaneous elections for both the Lok Sabha and the state assemblies without a “legal framework” in place. “Koi chance nahi” (no chance at all), Rawat had said when asked if it was still feasible to hold the parallel polls.His clarification comes amid a growing debate on holding simultaneous polls, with the ruling party making a strong pitch for the idea. The BJP has argued that one election would check expenditure and ensure that the nation is not in “election mode” throughout the year.indianexpress
India replaced its currency to wipe out illegal money stashes. Now the central bank says it didn’t work: washingtonpost
NEW DELHI — When Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the replacement of 80 percent of India’s cash in 2016, he sparked a currency crisis that led to huge job losses and stalled growth as it hit India’s vast informal sector.For months, people lined up at banks and ATMs — sometimes for more than eight hours — to withdraw limited amounts of cash to pay bills or buy daily groceries.Their troubles were a sacrifice for the nation, Modi said at the time. Old notes would be handed back to the banks, and the vast reserves of untaxed “black money” being used for dodgy deals among fat-cat businessmen, dirty politicians and Pakistani terrorists would be invalidated in one fell swoop.Now, newly released data from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) shows that 99.3 percent of high-value notes in circulation — worth about $216 billion — came back to the banks. That means that those illicit hoards that the government was hoping to flush out of the system were not in the form of cash and are still out there.And the long lines for cash, not to mention the losses in jobs and growth? Not necessary.“The RBI has in effect said that the prime minister’s premises and claims were dubious, and, in as much words, he didn’t know what he was talking about or getting into,” said Mohan Guruswamy, founder of the Center for Policy Alternatives and a former adviser to the finance minister.India’s economy runs mostly on cash, so Modi’s demonetization thoroughly shook the country. New Delhi-based Center for Monitoring the Indian Economy estimated that the shock move caused the loss of 1.5 million jobs, though other economists have put the number lower.In the weeks and months after Modi’s bombshell announcement, small-business owners said their customers stopped coming because they had no cash. Marriages were delayed because cash stacked up to pay for venues and caterers was now worthless. Millionaires joked about borrowing cash from their maids to buy cups of chai.Some found clever ways to avoid the long lines, such as bribing bank managers or paying people to stand in their place. But many who stood in lines said they supported Modi and his efforts to clean up India’s economy at the time.Guruswamy said the new data suggests that the entire policy was never thought out properly. “All reports on [black money] categorically stated that the undeclared incomes were mostly invested in properties and assets in India and abroad and in gold and jewelry. The cash with people was cash in stock and deployed for everyday business and living,” he said.
PM lying on Rafale & demonetisation, helping friends to turn black money into white: Rahul Gandhi
Hours after Youth Congress workers marched to the Prime Minister’s residence to protest against the Rafale scam, Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Thursday afternoon reiterated his demand for a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) to probe what he described as the great ‘Rafale Robbery’.“Rafale is a clear-cut case. Anil Ambani never made aircraft. He is under ₹45000 crore loan and opened a company just a few days before Rafale deal. Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has been making aircraft for past 70 years. An aircraft that was for ₹520 Cr was bought for ₹1600 Cr, why?” news agencies quoted Rahul Gandhi as saying.The day after the Reserve Bank of India acknowledged the failure of Demonetisation and admitted that over 99% of the currency in circulation that was denotified had returned to the banking system, the Congress president described Demonetisation as a scam designed to help 15 or 20 crony capitalists.He sarcastically added that the Prime Minister need not apologise to the nation for Demonetisation. “You apologise when you make a mistake but Demonetisation was not a mistake; it was a deliberate measure to help the PM’s cronies,” he declared. PM Modi’s friends had turned their black money into white during Demonetisation, he added.
Rahul Gandhi calls demonetisation a ‘huge scam’
Man Lynched in UP's Bareilly Based on Suspicion That He Stole a Buffalo
Bareilly (Uttar Pradesh): A young man who was home from Dubai where he worked as a tailor was lynched in a village in Uttar Pradesh’s Bareilly district on suspicion that he had stolen a buffalo, police said today.Shahrukh, 20, was beaten to death last night in Bholapur Hadoliya village under the Cantt police station area here.Four people have been arrested, said Superintendent of Police (City) Abhinandan Singh.Shahrukh and three others had gone out last night when a group of locals caught hold of them, suspecting that they had stolen a buffalo. He was thrashed by the group while his associates managed to escape, police said.He was admitted to hospital in a serious condition and later succumbed to injuries,Shahrukh worked in Dubai as tailor and had recently come home, Singh said.According to the post-mortem examination, severe beating was the cause of death, the SP said. Both sides have lodged FIRs.Shahrukh’s brother has filed a complaint against 20-25 unnamed persons and three of his associates. The side which alleged buffalo theft have also lodged a case, the SP added.PTI
Police probe into Kasganj violence 'grossly compromised', Muslims were 'selectively targeted', claims report by activists
New Delhi: Muslims were "selectively targeted" in the wake of the 26 January communal clashes in Uttar Pradesh's Kasganj and the police probe into the violence was "grossly compromised", a report prepared by civil rights activists has alleged.The report — Truth of Kasganj — released on Wednesday also alleged that there were "inconsistencies" in the police's version of the violence, as documented in the two FIRs, and there were attempts to protect certain people. The activists also demanded a "high-level inquiry" into the clashes. Former IPS officer SR Darapuri, civil rights activist Teesta Setalvad, Magsaysay awardee Sandeep Pandey, lawyer Shoaib Mohammad and academician Apoorvanand released the report, which is based on a study of the police reports, first-person accounts of affected people, and on-ground visit.Communal clashes had broken out in the western Uttar Pradesh town after stones were pelted on a 'Tiranga Yatra' taken out to celebrate the Republic Day. The police had said some people were riding motorcycles carrying the tricolour and were chanting Vande Mataram and Bharat Mata Ki Jai. When they reached a minority community-dominated locality, some "anti-social elements" pelted stones and opened fire. In this firing, a man called Chandan was killed and two others were injured.The activists concurred with the findings of the report that "Muslims were selectively targeted in the wake of the communal clashes". They also alleged that there was "discriminatory delivery of justice" to favour and protect certain people, based on a "majoritarian agenda".The report has been endorsed by a number of civil society groups from India and abroad — Alliance for Justice and Accountability, New York; Citizens for Justice and Peace, Mumbai; Indian American Muslim Council, Washington DC; Peoples' Union for Civil Liberties, New Delhi; Rihaee Manch, Lucknow; South Asia Solidarity Group, London, and United Against Hate, New Delhi, said Ajit Sahi, who worked on the report. The police investigation into the violence has been "grossly compromised in a blatant attempt to protect the Hindus and frame the Muslims", the 21-page report alleged, adding, the administration and police "failed" in preventing the violence.PTI

‘Nationwide raids, arrest of activists to divert attention from falling popularity of Modi, BJP’
NEW DELHI: Unleashing strong attack on the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the wake of the arrest of five eminent human rights activists, noted award-winning writer Arundhati Roy on Thursday said that the nationwide raids and arrest of the activists were “to divert attention of people from the reasons of falling popularity of the ruling BJP and PM Modi.”Addressing a press conference, she warned that there would be spate in violence in coming weeks and months till the elections because, she said, BJP and Modi are losing popularity.The press conference was called at the Press Club of India to denounce the arrest of activists — Lawyer Sudha Bharadwaj, journalist-academician Gautam Navlakha, writer Arun Ferreira, poet Varavara Raoand and activist Vernon Gonsalves.Reading out from her written statement, Arundhati Roy said: “Recent analyses of real voter data as well as the Lokniti-CSDS-ABP Mood of the Nation survey have shown that the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi are losing popularity at an alarming rate for them. We know that since 2002 riots of Gujarat, whenever popularity and power of the ruling party (BJP) goes down, a dangerous situation is created and riots occur.”“From now to the elections, it will be a continuous circus of arrests, assassinations, lynching, bomb attacks, riots and pogroms. We have learnt to connect the approach of the elections with the approach of all kinds of violence,” she said.Roy said that the arrests are “ruthless and continuous attempt to divert attention from the reasons for this loss of popularity and fracture the growing solidarity of the opposition.”Some other eminent figures like Prashant Bhushan, Aruna Roy, Kavita Srivastava, Kalyani Menon, Adv. Sanjay Parikh, ND Pancholi, Wilson Bezwada and Harish Dhawan also spoke on the occasion and condemned the arrest of the activists.Supreme Court lawyer Prashant Bhushan said: “Before arrests of activists, a campaign was run by media and a new term was coined that these activists are Urban Naxals. It means you are labeling as Naxals those who are fighting for the rights of oppressed Dalits, Tribals and minorities in order to arrest them. And what is this Urban Naxal? These activists have been working for human rights for 25 years.”caravan daily
Names of 7 Cr Muslim, Dalit voters removed from voters’ list at the behest of BJP, RSS: Nadeem Javed
Mumbai: Chairman of All India Congress Committee’s Minority department and former MLA Nadeem Javed lashed out at Modi government and said that the ruling BJP is working on RSS agenda. He alleged that names of 7 Cr Muslim and Dalit voters have been removed from the voters’ list at the behest of RSS and BJP. They aim at depriving Muslims and Dalits from right to vote, he said. Nadeem Javed told this while addressing a meeting of Congress officials at Tilak Bhawan on Wednesday.Boosting the morale of youth Congress he advised them to be ready to work with high spirit so that Congress party could be brought to power under the able leadership of Rahul Gandhi. He stressed the need for alliance of secular parties to defeat BJP.siasat
Hizbul Mujahideen chief’s son arrested in terror-funding case from Srinagar
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Thursday arrested Hizbul Mujahideen (HM) chief Syed Salahuddin’s son, Syed Ahmad Shakeel, from Srinagar for allegedly receiving funds for terrorist activities in 2011.An NIA statement said it arrested Shakeel after raiding his house in Srinagar’s Rambagh area along with the Central Reserve Police Force and the Jammu and Kashmir police.It said that Shakeel, who works as a lab technician at Srinagar’s Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences, was arrested since he ignored NIA’s summons and will be taken to Delhi for interrogation. “A non-bailable warrant was earlier issued by the NIA Special Court, Patiala House, New Delhi,’’ the statement said. “He will be produced before the NIA Special Court for his custody for custodial interrogation.”hindustantimes
WORLD
US official calls for investigation into Saudi-UAE raids in Yemen
A US official has called for an investigation into attacks by the Saudi-UAE coalition in Yemen and for perpetrators to be held accountable.In an interview with Al Jazeera in the Saudi city of Jeddah, Deputy US Ambassador to Yemen Ana Escrogima called for a speedy and transparent probe into the raids carried out by the Saudi-UAE coalition in Yemen.Escorgima's calls came after a team of UN-mandated investigators said in a report they had "reasonable grounds to believe that the parties to the armed conflict in Yemen have committed a substantial number of violations of international humanitarian law."Aljazeera
UN warns of 'perfect storm' over Syria's Idlib
UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura said a potential "perfect storm" is looming over Syria's Idlib province, with possible military implications beyond the region.Speaking to reporters in Geneva on Thursday, De Mistura offered to travel to Idlib to help ensure civilians can leave through a humanitarian corridor amid fears of an imminent government offensive to retake the last major region controlled by rebels."You can understand that when there is a perfect storm coming up in front of our eyes potentially, we need to address first things first," De Mistura said. "I am once again prepared ... personally and physically, to get involved myself ... to ensure such a temporary corridor would be feasible and guaranteed for the people so that they can then return to their own places once this is over," he added. Aljazeera
FLASH VIEWS & NEWS
The latest arrests represent erosion of civil liberties, fundamental rights:Prashant Bhushan
Johnson and Johnson case points to a regulatory deficit, and lack of medical ethics:Shah Alam Khan


Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:34 PM)

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