Tuesday, 11 September 2018

11 Sept ND:Ex RBI chief Raghuram Rajan gave PMO list of 'high profile NPA fraud cases' but no action was taken/ Babri Masjid trial has stalled my promotion: Sessions Judge to SC/Bhima Koregaon riots ‘pre-planned’: Report


NEWS DIGEST, MID-DAY  
11 Sept. 2018: 30 Zilhajj 1439: Vol: 10, No:105
INDIA
Ex RBI chief Raghuram Rajan gave PMO list of 'high profile NPA fraud cases' but no action was taken
New Delhi: The former governor of RBI Raghuram Rajan had red flagged “a list of high profile fraud cases of non-performing assets to PMO for coordinated investigation” and noted how the over-invoicing of imports by “unscrupulous promoters” was used to inflate the cost of capital equipment.Incredibly, the “Rajan list” did not set alarm bells ringing.Though Rajan does not mention the date he wrote to PMO– setting off speculation in a section of the media that the prime minister who had been derelict was Manmohan Singh and not Narendra Modi – the HT had reported in April 2015 that Rajan had written to Modi PMO wanting action on bank frauds worth Rs 17,500 crore. “The bank accounts cited by RBI belong to Winsome Diamond and Jewellery, Zoom Developers, Tiwari Group, Surya Vinayak Industries, Deccan Chronicle Holdings, First Leasing Company of India, Biolor Industries, Surya Pharmaceuticals, Prime Impex/ Prime Pulses and a person identified as Shivraj Puri”, HT said, quoting unnamed sources.Of these, Winsome Diamond was finally booked by the CBI only in April 2017.Rajan has referred to his attempt to sound the alarm on NPA fraud in a detailed 17-page reply to the estimates committee of parliament which, under the chairmanship of Murli Manohar Joshi, had sought his views on the NPA crisis. Though the committee believes Rajan is referring to the incumbent when he said “PMO”, it is now considering asking him for the date he wrote to the PMO. At the same time, a committee member said this was not so relevant as the responsibility for action in fraud cases is clearly on the incumbent. “We are looking at the PMO as a continuum.”Rajan said “a larger number of bad loans were originated in the period 2006-2008 when economic growth was strong, and previous infrastructure projects such as power plants had been completed on time and within budget. It is at such times that banks make mistakes.They extrapolate past growth and performance to the future. So they are willing to accept higher leverage in projects, and less promoter equity…. This is the historic phenomenon of irrational exuberance, common across countries at such a phase in the cycle.”When growth slowed down following the global meltdown of financial markets in 2008, bank loans quickly came under stress.Compounding the problem, said Rajan, was official foot-dragging on clearances. “A variety of governance problems such as the suspect allocation of coal mines coupled with the fear of investigation slowed down government decision making in Delhi, both in UPA and subsequent NDA govts… The continuing travails of the stranded power plants, even though India is short of power, suggests government decision making has not picked up sufficient pace to date.”The absence of a proper bankruptcy code in this period made it difficult for banks to write off debt by penalising the debtor; the end result was the ever-greening of bad loans. However, malfeasance and fraud were also factors, said Rajan, and the reluctance of the system to act is a serious problem:thewire
Raghuram predicts sources of next banking crisis: Mudra scheme, loan waivers – here’s what he says
‘Over-optimistic bankers, slow decision-making’: Raghuram Rajan decodes bad loans
Aadhaar security breached: Anyone, including terrorists, from anywhere in the world can generate IDs with this software patch
Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) Aadhaar software that enrols new users may have been hacked using a software patch that disables security features, revealed an investigation by HuffPost India. The investigation report further said that this patch is readily available in the market at a one-time charge of as low as Rs 2,500.This patch, allows unauthorised persons, that too from anywhere in the world, to generate Aadhar numbers and, as per the report, the patch is already used by many enrolment operators across the country.HuffPost India has claimed to have gained access to the patch, that bypasses the critical security features including GPS, the GPS security feature is used by UIDAI to track the physical location from where the number is generated.Newsx
Babri Masjid trial has stalled my promotion: Sessions Judge to Supreme Court
New Delhi :The Supreme Court Monday issued notice on a plea by Surendra Kumar Yadav, CBI judge hearing the Babri Masjid demolition case, that his promotion has been stalled after the apex court’s order directing that the CBI judge should not be transferred till the trial is completed.On April 19, 2017, the Supreme Court had revived conspiracy charges against top BJP leaders including L K Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi among others and transferred the pending case to a Magistrate Court in Rae Bareli.“There shall be no de novo (fresh) trial. There shall be no transfer of the judge conducting the trial until the entire trial concludes. The case shall not be adjourned on any ground except when the sessions court finds it impossible to carry on the trial for that particular date,” the court had said.In his plea to the Supreme Court, Yadav requested that he be allowed to file an application seeking cancellation of the notification that has stalled his promotion on transfer.Yadav pointed out that on June 1, 2018, the Allahabad High Court had appointed him District and Sessions Judge, Badaun. The “order was of transfer on promotion”, he submitted. However, on the same day, another notification was issued, “cancelling”transfer on promotion until further orders on the ground that the SC had directed“there shall be no transfer of the judge conducting trial of Ayodhya matters”, his application said. Yadav submitted that he had joined the judiciary as Munsif on June 8, 1990, and has an “unblemished career” of 28 years behind him. “However, despite utmost sincerity and honesty with which the applicant has worked, the applicant and family are embarrassed and humiliated in the twilight of his service,” the plea said.indianexpress
Bhima Koregaon riots ‘pre-planned’: Report
A fact-finding report by a nine-member team has concluded that the Bhima Koregaon violence on Jan. 1 this year was “preplanned”.Blaming police for inaction, the report also points to a conspiracy, stating that over a period of 15 years, Milind Ekbote and Sambhaji Bhide, both leaders of Hindutva outfits, had helped create an atmosphere that ultimately led to the riots.The report was submitted to the inspector general of police, Kolhapur range — who appointed the panel led by Pune Deputy Mayor Dr Siddharth Dhende — on Jan20. Bhima Koregaon Commission has just concluded its first round of hearings in Mumbai, and will summon a member from fact-finding team to depose before it in Pune.The report said Ekbote had founded the Dharmavir Sambhaji Maharaj Smruti Samiti to distort the history of Vadhu Budruk and Govind Gaikwad – a Mahar hero who had performed the last rites of Sambhaji Maharaj, son of Shivaji Maharaj.“A board near Sambhaji Maharaj’s samadhi detailing the work done by Govind Gaikwad was replaced with a new one [omitting information about him], and [RSS founder] KB Hedgewar’s photo was put up. There was no need to put up Hedgewar’s photo at the samadhi. It was a deliberate move that created a rift between the upper and backward castes. If police had taken action, the untoward incident could have been avoided,” the report stated.Slamming the police for being mute spectators, the report named a DSP, a police inspector, and one more police officer, and stated that several phone calls were made to the cops about the violence, but were not taken seriously: “The police were witness to the violence and arson, but did not take any steps to prevent it. The assailants kept saying, ‘Don’t worry, the police are with us’.Dr Siddharth Dhende, Pune Deputy Mayor said,"We have given proof that it was pre-planned violence, and had nothing to do with the Elgar Parishad, as had been alleged. The history of Bhima Koregaon and surrounding areas shows that Dalits and Marathas did not previously have animosity. But Bhide and Ekbote twisted the historical narrative to create communal tension.We have mapped a chronology to establish the involvement of Hindutva forces."mumbaimirror
Pratapgarh lynching of Zafar Hussain: Rajasthan police clear accused civic officials
Jaipur – Rajasthan Police have given a clean chit to the officials of a municipality in Pratapgarh district who were accused of assaulting 53-year-old social activist Zafar Hussain leading to his death in June last year.The officials on Swacch Bharat patrolling in the morning of 16th June 2017 had allegedly assaulted Hussain when he objected to them taking pictures of women defecating in the open. The incident had occurred at Mehtab Shah Kutchi Basti in Pratapgarh of Rajasthan. However, the local police and the state BJP government had denied the charge of lynching and said Hussain died of heart attack.In their final report submitted to a local court, Pratapgarh police have reportedly stated that they have not framed any charge against the four civic officials involved in the scuffle against whom an FIR under IPC Section 302 (murder) had been registered hours after the death of Zafar Hussain.Hussain’s family members had lodged the case against the then municipal council commissioner Ashok Jain and employees Kamal Harijan, Ritesh Harijan and Manish Harijan.“A final report has been submitted to the court in the case and it has been concluded in the investigation that Hussain died of heart attack,” Babulal Murariya, station house officer, Pratapgarh, and investigating officer in the case has been quoted as saying by Indian Express.Police submitted the final report at the court of CJM, Pratapgarh, on 4th Sept.caravandaily
Probe reveals dirty, cruel secrets of gaushalas
Titled ‘Gau Gaatha’, the report was released by animal protection organisation Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations (FIAPO) on September 4. The report said the investigation revealed extremely worrisome conditions at bovine care centres in 13 States and two Union Territories.“Such dreadful conditions are against the backdrop of the rhetoric of cow protection from various sections of society, which have gained popularity over the last several years,” said the report.A key issue that emerged during the investigation was that of financial sustainability — something that most gaushalas faced. The report noted that only a handful of gaushalas received minimal, if any, government support. Others depended on donations from people or religious institutions, or on sale of milk and milk products. This, the report said, led to employing cruel practices and making them no different from dairies milking for profit. FIAPO executive director Varda Mehrotra said: “Historically, most Indians have held a compassionate view towards bovines — setting up gaushalas for their care and enacting laws for their protection. However, it has become clear from our investigation that rhetoric and reality continue to be divorced, and that most gaushalas provide care that is little better than dairies, employing similar cruel practices. The few that do not are crumbling under their own weight without adequate support from the govt. With no training or support, taking life-long responsibility of thousands of animals has spelt doom for them. We need to wake up to the harsh reality of how we are really treating bovines in India.”thehindu
BJP MLC Bukkal Nawab Resigns from UP Shia Waqf Board, Calls it a 'House of Courruption'
Lucknow: Just days after Waseem Rizvi, Chairman of the UP Shia Waqf Board , was “excommunicated” for not heeding to a fatwa issued by Iraq’s top Shia cleric against handing over Waqf properties for the construction of a temple or a shrine, controversy surrounds him once again after BJP MLC Mazhar Ali Khan announced his resignation from the Shia Waqf Board and demanded its immediate dissolution. Terming it as a ‘house of corruption’, in a letter addressed to the Principal Secretary of the Minorities Welfare Department, Azhar Ali or ‘Bukkal Nawab’ stated that he voted for Rizvi as the Chairman only at the behest of the then cabinet minister Azam Khan.  Calling the decision the biggest mistake of his life, Bukkal Nawab wrote, “I have not attended a single meeting of the UP Shia Waqf Board ever since I became a member. The board is involved in many scams and voting for Waseem Rizvi was the biggest mistake of my life. I demand immediate dissolution of the board and also resign from my membership of the board. ” News18
Modi to meet head of Bohra community in Indore Mosque
Indore :Prime Minister Narendra Modi will meet the religious head of Dawoodi Bohra community Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin at a mosque here on Sept.14, officials said on Monday.According to the officials, Modi will meet Saifuddin at the Saifi Nagar mosque in the city where the head of the Dawoodi Bohra community will hold a 9-day religious discourse starting Sept.12.The prime minister is likely to address members of the community gathered at the mosque after his meeting, they said.However, the district administration has not received any intimation from PMO on the proposed address. Modi's visit to poll-bound Madhya Pradesh is being seen by political pundits as an attempt to give a fillip to the BJP push to retain power in the state.PTI
DU poll violence at Zakir Hussain, principal blames ABVP members
New Delhi :On the last day of campaigning for the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) polls, members of ABVP allegedly vandalised property at Zakir Hussain (Evening) College and assaulted students and staff.The incident took place on Monday when ABVP’s vice-presidential candidate, Shakti Singh, had gone to the college for campaigning, which ended at 8 pm.College principal Masroor Ahmad Baig claimed,”I don’t know how it started, but I was shocked to hear the commotion. They vandalised college property, broke chairs and threw flower pots. It was ABVP activists who beat up students; they even hit girls and staff.” Police were called in and Baig said the college was filing a complaint. DCP(central) Mandeep Singh Randhawa, said, “Police personnel were present at the spot when the incident took place and they controlled the crowd. No complaint has been received from the college administration.”A student of the college claimed Singh was stopped when he tried to enter with a large group of supporters. “He was told that he could take a few supporters for campaigning. They got angry and started breaking college property, and passed lewd comments,” alleged student, who did not want to be identified.indianexpress
Agnivesh challenges RSS chief to a debate on ‘Hinduism’
Social activist Swami Agnivesh has made an “open challenge” to RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat to openly discuss ‘Hinduism’ in a debate on Vedas and Upanishads with him. Swami Agnivesh was in Pune to attend a state level convention on religious terrorism and intolerance. Speaking at World Hindu Congress in Chicago, RSS chief had said Hindus should unite. “If a lion is alone, wild dogs can invade and destroy the lion,” Bhagwat had said. Reacting to Bhagwat’s remarks, Agnivesh said,“They (RSS) are deliberately doing this to polarise Hindu vote. Even they do not know how deep-rooted Hindu religion is. I challenge him for an open debate on ‘Hinduism’ based on Vedas and Upanishads,” said Agnivesh, who was recently assaulted when he was on his way to pay tribute to former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.Delivering his speech, Agnivesh slammed the Modi government on the issue of increasing intolerance in the country. “I was one of the victims of increasing intolerance and mob lynching in country. Even after 20 days to the assault on me, government has failed to arrest anyone which clearly indicates that attack was ‘state-sponsored’,”he said.HT
Upper castes should be given 15% reservation: Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan
Union minister for consumer affairs, food and public distribution, Ram Vilas Paswan is the senior-most Dalit face in the Modi govt. He spoke over the protests against the govt’s decision to bring in a bill restoring provisions of SC/ST (Prevention of Corruption) Act that were seemingly watered down by the Supreme Court in March, reservations in promotion, and upper-caste reservation, among other issues.In an interview, he said that upper castes should be given 15% reservation.HT
Coimbatore blasts suspect, absconding for 2 decades, arrested
Chennai:Crime Branch-CID special investigation team arrested N.P. Noohu alias Rasheed alias Mankavu Rasheed (44), of Panniyankara Village, Kozhikode, Kerala who was wanted in the Coimbatore serial bomb blast case.In 1998, Coimbatore City B1 Bazaar police station registered the case against him, among other suspects,for offences including criminal conspiracy, murder and attempt to murder under IPC and provisions of Explosive Substances Act 1908 and Arms Act.The accused had been absconding since 1998 Coimbatore serial blasts and was hiding abroad for last 20 years. He was declared as a proclaimed offender by Court.thehindu
No shorts, step out of hostel rooms only in formals, AMU freshers told:TOI
Agra: AMU’s hostel provost has sparked a controversy by issuing a list of “dos and don’ts” for freshers, which bans wearing “shorts”, “Bermudas”, “slippers” and even “kurta-pyjamas” when they step out of their hostel rooms even if it is for a meal in the mess. All freshers of Sir Shah Sulaiman(SHS) hall have been told to dress formally – either black sherwanis or shirts-trousers and formal shoes – when they step out of their rooms for any work.The same dress code applies for the reading room or common room.The order states that these instructions are “mandatory” in order “to maintain the culture and traditions of the university”. Notably, the order comes close on the heels of a UGC-backed audit of the institution, which states the university suffers from “zamindari culture”. The panel had suggested that it should be ended in order to “widen the mental horizons of the students”. The university has, however, opposed this suggestion on the grounds that this was “part of its historic traditions”. When asked, AMU spokesperson Shafey Kidwai said, “The new rule is basically advisory in nature. Secondly, we provide sherwanis to all students at a one-time nominal charge.”TOI
Kashmiri Pandit Association Terms Reports of Threat to Community as 'Diversion from Article 35A'
New Delhi: A prominent Kashmiri Pandit association has termed reports of threats to the community living in the Kashmir Valley as an attempt to “increase the trust deficit among the population living in the Valley”. The president of the Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samiti (KPSS) Sanjay K. Tickoo stated that Jammu and Kashmir is facing political instability due to the debate around the removal of Articles 35A and 370 of the constitution and reports of threats to the Kashmiri Pandits were an attempt to “distract people’s attention from the issues”.“KPSS strongly believe that the religious minuscule minority (Kashmiri Pandit) who so ever is living in Kashmir Valley is living of his own and the kind of relationship maintained within their respective neighborhood. It seems that the news item about life threat to the religious minuscule minority (Kashmiri Pandit) in Kashmir Valley is a hoax pre-planned conspiracy and is aimed to sacrifice the Kashmiri Pandits in Kashmir Valley to gain some vested interest political mileage (sic),” KPSS stated in a statement release on Monday.Tickoo added that “by sacrificing the religious minuscule minority(Kashmiri Pandit) in Kashmir Valley”, agencies with vested interests wanted to justify the removal of Articles 35A and 370, which “give special status to J&K”.Asserting that Kashmiri Pandits have “full faith in the masses and more particularly on their respective neighborhood”, KPSS said neighbours had always stood by the Pandits to “not allow past mistakes to happen again, which can permanently damage the social fabric of Kashmir Valley”. “We believe in unity against those trying to destroy our existence in Kashmir Valley,” the statement read.thewire
Scheduled Caste Leader's Head Skin Peeled for 'Wearing Turban' in MP
Shivpuri, Madhya Pradesh: The skin of the head of a scheduled caste leader of the Bahujan Samaj Party was peeled off allegedly by some villagers in Madhya Pradesh’s Shivpuri district, police said Tuesday. Another leader of BSP claimed that the victim, Sardar Singh Jatav, 45, was targeted for “wearing a turban”.Police registered a case against three persons Tuesday and are investigating the matter.The trio allegedly called Jatav to the residence of one of the accused, Surendra Gurjar, in Mahoba village, around 50 kms from here, on September 3 under some pretext and abused him there and then peeled off the skin of his head using a knife, a police official said.“Jatav alleged in his statement that Gurjar and two others removed the skin of his head with a knife,” said Narwar police station in-charge Badam Singh Yadav.No arrests have been made so far and efforts are on to trace the accused, he said.PTI
52 pilgrims killed in Telangana bus accident, police suspect brake failure
Hyderabad: 52 people were killed and several were injured after a state-owned Road Transport Corporation bus carrying pilgrims from a temple in the hills of Telangana’s Jagtiyal district plunged off a road into a 30-foot gorge on Tuesday morning.According to police, the pilgrims were on their way back from a Hanuman temple atop Kondagattu hill. The bus was travelling from Sanivarampet village to Jagitial via Kondagattu pilgrim centre when the accident took place around 11:30am. Police suspect failure of brakes led to the accident.  Authorities recovered bodies of five children, 32 females and 15 males before calling off the rescue operation. The injured were shifted to Jagitial government hospital. The toll could go up as the condition of some of the injured was stated to be critical.HT
Jalandhar bishop: Nun is lying, rape charge against me a conspiracy by those against church
New Delhi :Jalandhar diocese Bishop Franco Mulakkal has refuted the rape accusation charges against him, saying that a “conspiracy” has been hatched by a group of people who are against the church. He also accused the nun of lying as he had ordered action against her in the past. “The nun is lying, made up the case against me because I had ordered action against her. Police have no evidence against me that’s why they have not arrested me,” said Mulakkal.Reacting to the support to the complainant by other nuns, Mulakkal said that the people who are against the church are using the nuns against him. “I feel there are people who are against the church, they’re using these sisters. This is a conspiracy and several people are taking advantage of the situation, they are putting sisters at the forefront,” the bishop was quoted as saying by ANI.indianexpress
Election Commission serves notice to AAP, asks why its recognition should not be withdrawn for discrepancies in donations
Election Commission of India has served showcause notice to AAP asking why its recognition as a political party should not be withdrawn for discrepancies in donations received.Its notice read, “Now, therefore, the Election Commission hereby directs you to show cause as to why action should not be taken against AAP under Para 16A of the Election Symbol (Reservation & Allotment) order 1968 for failure to follow the lawful directions and instructions as stated above.“Your representation should reach the office of Commission within 20 days from the date of receipt of the notice, failing which the matter will be decided on merits based on information available on record.”jantakareporter
WORLD
China to regulate online religious activity amid crackdown on churches, mosques
Beijing:China is rolling out new rules on religious activity on the internet amid an ongoing crackdown on churches, mosques and other institutions by the officially atheist Communist Party.Anyone wishing to provide religious instruction or similar services online must apply by name and be judged morally fit and politically reliable, according to draft regulations posted online late Monday by State Administration for Religious Affairs. Organizations and schools that receive licenses can operate only on their internal networks that require users to be registered and are barred from seeking converts or distributing texts or other religious materials, the rules said.They also impose tight limits on what can be said or posted, including a ban on criticism of the party’s leadership and official religious policies, promoting religious participation by minors, and “using religion to ... overthrow the socialist system.”Livestreaming of religious activities, including praying, preaching or even burning incense, is also forbidden.Authorities in recent months have ratcheted up pressure on religious groups, destroying crosses, burning bibles, shutting churches and ordering followers to renounce their faith.The campaign is part of a drive to “Sinicize” religion by demanding loyalty to the officially atheist Communist Party and leader Xi Jinping. Observers call it the most severe crackdown since religious freedom was written into the Chinese constitution in 1982.AP
US weighs sanctions against Chinese officials over Muslim detention camps
The Trump administration is considering sanctions against Chinese senior officials and companies to punish Beijing’s detention of hundreds of thousands of ethnic Uighurs and other minority Muslims in large internment camps, according to current and former U.S. officials.The economic penalties would be one of the first times the Trump administration has taken action against China because of human rights violations. U.S. officials are also seeking to limit American sales of surveillance technology that Chinese security agencies and companies are using to monitor Uighurs throughout northwest China.Discussions to rebuke China for its treatment of its minority Muslims have been underway for months among officials at the White House and the Treasury and State departments. But they gained urgency two weeks ago, after members of Congress asked Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to impose sanctions on seven Chinese officials.New York Times
Xi, Putin meet as Russia kicks off biggest ever war games
Russia launched its largest war games since the Cold War on Tuesday with hundreds of thousands of troops, including Chinese soldiers taking part for the first time, in eastern Siberia.The massive military manoeuvres come as tensions between the West and Russia have intensified to the highest level since the days of the Soviet Union. The drills have been condemned by NATO as a rehearsal for a "large-scale conflict".Dubbed Vostok-2018, the war games involve more than 300,000 troops, 36,000 tanks, 1,000 aircraft and 80 warships and support vessels, according to Russia's defence ministry.It broadcast images of military trucks being transported on trains, columns of tanks, armoured vehicles and naval vessels on the move, and combat helicopters and fighter aircraft taking off. aljazeera
UN voices concern over escalating tension in Syria
UN Assistant Secretary General on Tuesday voiced concern over the growing tension in northwestern Syria."I am deeply worried over the recent escalation of hostilities in northwest Syria, resulting in the new displacement during the past few days of over 30,000 women, children and men and scores of civilian deaths," Panos Moumtzis said in a statement.Moumtzis, Regional Humanitarian Coordinator for the Syria Crisis, said currently there are some 6.2 million internally displaced people inside Syria."A further escalation of military operations in Idlib and surrounding areas will not only endanger civilian lives in this densely populated area, but will severely impact humanitarian partners’ ability to deliver life-saving assistance," he said.The UN official also condemned the "horrific" attacks in civilian-populated areas and called on all parties to the conflict to ensure the protection of civilians.Anadolu Agency
Khan al-Ahmar demolition: PLO files a war crime claim to the Hague
A senior Palestinian official said on Tuesday that a case has been filed to the International Criminal Court (ICC) regarding the planned demolition of the West Bank Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar following an Israeli court ruling.The move comes as US National Security Adviser John Bolton threatened sanctions against ICC officials over possible war crimes investigations against the US and Israel. Saed Erekat, the secretary general of the Palestine Liberation Organisation, said that the submission urged the ICC chief prosecutor to meet with the council that represents Khan al-Ahmar's nearly 200 residents ahead of the court-sanctioned eviction after 12 Sept."We hope that an official judicial investigation can be opened as soon as possible," Erekat said.This statement is the latest move by the PLO since the US Department of State closed the organisation's mission in Washington on Monday. The PA envoy to Washington told Associated Press that his staffers have been given a month to pack up after the Trump administration ordered the PLO mission closed.middleeasteye
Bulldozing Palestinian villages: The global firms aiding Israeli demolitions
Human rights groups have condemned international construction firms for their role in the destruction of Palestinian villages including Khan al-Ahmar, which is set to be razed in the coming days. Photographs, video and social media posts show vehicles and equipment that have been sold to the Israeli army by Caterpillar, JCB and LiuGong being used in the demolition of Palestinian homes. All three companies have declined or failed to respond to MEE's requests for comment. In early Sept, Israeli High Court of Justice rejected several last-ditch petitions filed by Khan al-Ahmar's residents and said that authorities could raze the homes from 12 Sept.onwards. Amnesty International described the High Court's decision as sanctioning a "war crime" while UK-based NGO War on Want condemned the companies, which it says profit from sales of the equipment to the Israeli government.middleeasteye
‘End of days’ prophecy announced by Jewish fundamentalist group linked to Israel govt
An Israeli Jewish fundamentalist group that received donations from the country’s defence minister has said that an end of times prophecy ushering Armageddon has been fulfilled following the birth of a “flawless” red heifer. Temple Institute, which promotes the construction of a third temple on the ruins of Al-Aqsa Mosque, has announced the birth of the first red calf in Israel for 200 year. They believe that a biblical prophecy predicting the end of days has come true.Temple institute in Jerusalem announced the calf’s birth, saying it would undergo extensive examinations to determine if it is red all over. Jewish fundamentalist group believes that if the female baby calf is found to be “blemish free” and completely red, the institute will declare that the calf will bring the promise of reinstating biblical purity to the world.In some Christian and Jewish reading of the bible, the red heifer is believed to be central to the prediction about the “end of times”. After sacrificing the red cow, the prophecy states that, construction can begin on the third temple in Jerusalem; a goal which the Temple Institute and a number of other groups worldwide are determined to do. Their goal is to full fill the prophecy by building the third temple on Mount Moriah also known as the temple mount.Rabbi Chain Richman, international director of Temple Institute, has said that the time is ripe to build Third Temple, following the birth of the red heifer.MEMO
Saudi Court begins the trial of prominent TV host
Saudi criminal court began the trial of prominent TV host, Fahd al-Sunaidi one year after his arrest,  Saudi media reports.According to Saudi reports, court accused al-Sunaidi, a program host on the al-Majd TV channel of several charges including supporting the Muslim Brotherhood and demanding the release of security detainees.One of the most controversial charges against al-Sunaidi is attending a conference in Libya after the fall of Muammar Gaddafi’s regime, without permission from the Saudi authorities.According to activists, al-Sunaidi is known for his moderation and keeping away from mainstream media in Saudi Arabia.middleeastmonitor
Uzbekistan: Imam sacked after urging president to lift ban on hijabs, beards
Tashkent:An Uzbek imam has been sacked after urging President Shavkat Mirziyoyev to lift a ban on personal religious symbols such as women’s hijabs and beards for men, in a case showing the limits of newly-proclaimed tolerance in the mainly Muslim country. Mirziyoyev, who came to power in 2016, has relaxed restrictions on religious freedoms as part of his campaign of liberal economic and political reforms in the former Soviet republic of 32 million. But his government stopped short of lifting a decades-long ban on religious clothes and attributes, and specifically barred female students from wearing headscarves known as hijabs in schools by a decree issued last month. Russian deputy PM Vitaly Mutko visits Russia training session ahead of their biggest World Cup match since the break-up of the Soviet Union.The move prompted criticism on social networks led by Fazliddin Parpiyev, then imam of the Omina mosque in Tashkent. He published a video address to Mirziyoyev on Facebook last week, an unusual move for an Uzbek cleric. Reuters
Algeria MPs call for halt of mass executions in Egypt
2 parliamentary groups in Algeria have called for official national and international action to halt mass executions against activists, human rights workers and political figures in Egypt.Movement of Society for Peace; the largest Islamic party in Algeria and Union for Development, Justice and Building said in a joint statement that lawmakers “are following with great concern the developments of the human rights situation in the Arab world; the most recent of which was the issuance of mass death sentences against political, human rights and community symbols”.The signatories described the executions as “a flagrant attack on the right to life”, which is politically motivated “amounting to genocide or mass murder according to international law”. They called on “the Algerian parliament, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, human rights organisations, political parties, civil society actors and all the free world to intervene in order to stop these executions.”MEMO
Pakistan Rejects Report on Belt and Road Initiative Renegotiation, Says Committed to CPEC
Islamabad: Pakistan on Monday rejected a media report that Prime Minister Imran Khan’s newly elected government plans to renegotiate the agreements reached under China’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and said the country remains committed to the successful implementation of the CPEC.A Financial Times report quoted Advisor on Commerce Abdul Razzak Dawood as saying that the multi-billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor had put local companies at a disadvantage and that parts of the flagship project can be renegotiated or even frozen for a year.The CPEC, launched in 2015, is a planned network of roads, railways and energy projects linking China’s resource-rich Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region with Pakistan’s strategic Gwadar Port on the Arabian Sea. It is a part of the BRI.Dawood’s reported interview came a day after Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi concluded his 3-day official.During his stay in Pakistan, Wang met country’s top leadership, including the prime minister.PTI
FLASH VIEWS & NEWS
Politics of presence in JNU: Najeeb Ahmed, the Muslim identity and the Left’s hypocrisy:Noel Mariam George
Pune Police Is Diverting Bhima Koregaon Investigation, Protecting Bhide, Ekbote: Deputy Mayor Siddharth Dhende
Modi is Leaving India Unprepared for a World Made by Trump and China:Sushil Aaron
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Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:16 PM)

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