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28 January 2019

28 Jan.ND: SC seeks information on detention centres, foreigners detained in Assam in the last 10 yrs/Maharashtra: Pay compensation to men tortured on false rioting charges, MSHRC orders Home dept


NEWS DIGEST, Afternoon 
28 Jan. 2019: 21 Jamadiul-I 1440: Vol:11, No:113
INDIA
SC seeks information on detention centres, foreigners detained in Assam in the last 10 years
The Supreme Court today directed Centre to provide it various details including number of functional detention centres in Assam and the number of foreigners detained there during the last 10 years.A bench comprising CJI Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Sanjiv Khanna was hearing a petition filed by activist Harsh Mander on the condition of detention centres in Assam and the prolonged detention of foreigners there.The SC asked Centre to provide various details about the detention centres, the period of detention of detainees and the status of their cases before Foreigners Tribunal."We would like to know as to how many detention centres are there. We also want to know how many persons are lodged there and since when," bench said.It also asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta to provide details as to how many persons are being declared foreigners so far and how many of them have been deported till date.The bench also sought the year-wise details of foreigners who have illegally entered into India during the last 10 years.The bench, which has sought details within 3 weeks form the authority, has now posted the matter for further hearing on Feb. 19.PTI
‘Fleeing Rohingya paid Rs 10,000 each to agents to go to Bangladesh’
31 Rohingya,who were stuck between India and Bangladesh borders for 4 days, were among the over 100 refugees who left camps in J&K’s Narwal area over past fortnight. Last Tuesday, BSF arrested the refugees and handed them over to Tripura Police.All of them had been staying in rented jhuggis on land belonging to one Jamat Ali since 2014.While others seem to have managed to enter Bangladesh, these 31 got stuck, their neighbours said. For safe passage to Bangladesh from India, they paid agents Rs 10,000 per person and to arrange money, they sold all belongings at throwaway prices, said Jamaat Ali’s son Ishfaq.They had been living peacefully till police and revenue officials started collecting biometric details of refugees from Myanmar, said Nazim ul Haq. Haq said those who were stuck between the borders included his mother-in-law, sisters-in-law and other relatives.Drive to collect biometric details had followed campaigns by some outfits demanding deportation of the refugees. During the drive, Haq said, rumours spread that the Govt was collecting their details to send them back to Myanmar from where they fled following a military offensive. He said groups of Myanmar refugees had been holding discussions about their fate for the past three-four months. However, the immediate provocation for them to leave for Bangladesh was India’s move to deport five members of a Rohingya family to Myanmar in Manipur early this year, he said. Haq said he too had planned to leave. “I would have been left alone here as all my relatives were leaving,’’ he said. However, he said, he could not arrange money to pay the agent on time. “I decided to meet them (relatives) later. In the meantime, news came about their getting stuck between borders.’’ Ishfaq said, “When we came to know about these families planning to go to Bangladesh, we advised them against it. But, all of them, except one or 2, left without informing us.’’indianexpress
SC sends plea challenging Hindu prayers in Kendriya Vidyalayas to Constitution bench:IE
The Supreme Court today sent a petition challenging the recital of Hindi and Sanskrit prayers by Kendriya Vidyalaya students in morning assembly to a Constitution bench. The SC directed that the plea be placed before CJI Ranjan Gogoi for referring it to an appropriate bench.The petition,filed by MP-based lawyer Veenayaj Shah,said prayers are “based on Hindu religion” and was being “imposed” on students irrespective of their faith and belief.According to Revised Education Code for Kendriya Vidyalayas implemented in 2013,“compulsory attendance” of students in the morning assembly is required where they have to recite prayers. “Common prayer is in Sanskrit and Hindi, and all the students irrespective of their faith and belief have to perform the prayer in a respectful manner by closing their eyes and folding their hands. All the teachers share the collective responsibility of supervising the assembly and making sure that every student folds his/her hands, closes his/her eyes and recites the prayers without fail,” petitioner contended and alleged that “any student failing to do so is punished and humiliated in front of the entire school”.Shah quoted the prayers in the petition and said it “is being enforced throughout the country in all Kendra Vidyalayas.As a result, parents and children of the minority communities as well as atheists and others who do not agree with this system of prayer, such as agnostics… rationalists and others would find imposition of this prayer constitutionally impermissible.”
Awaiting Govt Sanction to Prosecute Vanzara, Amin: CBI on Ishrat Jahan killing Case
Ahmedabad: CBI told a special court today that it is waiting for Gujarat Govt 's sanction to prosecute retired police officers accused in Ishrat Jahan alleged fake encounter case. Court of special CBI judge J K Pandya posted the matter for hearing on Feb.16 after CBI said it is awaiting a reply from the state Govt  on sanction to prosecute retired police officials DG Vanzara and NK Amin under section 197 of CrPC.The court had earlier rejected discharge applications of the 2 retired officers, who were named as accused by CBI in 2004 alleged fake encounter of Ishrat and three others.While rejecting their discharge applications in August last year, the court had sought status from the CBI on whether sanction was sought from the state Govt  to prosecute them so that it could proceed further with the framing of charges against the 2 ex police officials.CBI had, at the time, told the court that permission was sought from the state Govt  to prosecute the retired police officials.PTI
Maharashtra: Pay compensation to men tortured on false rioting charges, MSHRC orders Home dept
Mumbai :Ruling that Maharashtra Police misused its powers and tortured 5 men imprisoned on false charges of rioting, Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission (MSHRC) directed the state’s additional chief secretary (Home) to pay a compensation of Rs 2 lakh each to 5 Jalna residents.It further directed DGP to initiate a departmental inquiry in the matter.In his complaint, Irfan Rehman Khan (27), a tailor based in Baid Pura, Jalna, claimed that on the eve of Holi, on March 23, 2016, there was communal violence near a mosque following which a complaint was filed with the Sadar Bazaar police. The complaint alleged that a few men threw colour powder on people coming out of the local mosque after offering prayers. Police filed an FIR against Khan, along with four others — Arbaaz Rehman Khan, Mohsin Yusuf Khan, Shaikh Mansur Shahid and Shehbaaz Khan— on charges of rioting and and causing hurt. 5 were detained on March 30, 2016.In his complaint to MSHRC, Khan alleged that they were subjected to communal remarks by Police SI Shailesh Shejul.Men were allegedly subjected to custodial torture for a whole day before being presented in court, when they received bail. According to documents with MSHRC, however, 5 men were acquitted of all charges in 2017. indianexpress
Maharashtra ATS raid:10th arrest Mumbra’s engineer
Maharashtra ATS has arrested yet another youth from Mumbra who was allegedly part of a larger conspiracy busted by ATS last week with the arrest of nine youths, including a minor, from Mumbra and Aurangabad,fresh arrest is an engineering graduate identified as Talha alias Abubakar Potrekar, 24.Talha has been living in a rented flat at Dosti Emerald tower in Shil Daighar, Mumbra with his mother and grandfather since Oct.6, 2018,Talha's father, Hanif Potrekar, works in Dubai. According to sources, Potrekar was allegedly part of newly formed outfit, Ummat-e Mohammadia, and being well educated, was given the task of recruiting like-minded youngsters to execute their plot against the nation. Advocate Khizer Patel, Talha's lawyer, said, "All these allegations are baseless. Talha may have come in contact with the other boys but he isn't involved in any unlawful' activities as claimed by ATS. ATS has also showed recovery of laptops, mobiles which are common articles. ATS demanded 14 days custody but the court granted only 10 days."ATS has been arresting youths who are part of a WhatsApp group.It is alleging that they had been plotting their attack through this group.midday
Sleuths suspect Amroha-Delhi terror handler based in Pak
New Delhi :Security officials suspect that the handler of alleged Amroha-Delhi terror module,which NIA claimed to have busted last month, was based in Pakistan, sources said. The handler assumed the online identity of Abu Malik Peshawari and was instrumental in motivating the module’s alleged mastermind — Mufti Suhail, a preacher from Delhi’s Jaffrabad — to join the Islamic State, NIA has alleged.The “preliminary conclusion” on the handler’s identity is based on analysis of purported online chats between Suhail and Peshawari, sources said.“Urdu that Peshawari speaks and writes is largely identified with a certain region in Pakistan. Such Urdu is neither spoken in India nor in any other part of the world. We are yet to identify him or come to a definitive conclusion that he is a Pakistani,” said an officer speaking on condition of anonymity.NIA has arrested 12 persons in the Amroha-Delhi case. indianexpress
NIA fails to find terror fund links in Gujarat, through hawala to build a mosque in Palval
Hmedabad: Just before the Republic Day, teams of NIA camped for 2 days in Surat and Valsad to search for proof to establish terror funding links to Rs 70 lakh channelled through hawala to build a mosque in Palval village in Haryana. However, they have returned empty handed say sources. NIA suspects the presence of one Kamran, a Pakistani citizen currently residing in Dubai behind the funds said sources from central agencies. Kamran is suspected to be linked with Hafiz Saeed. 3 persons, Mohammed Salman, 52, imam of the mosque, and two others, Mohammed Salim and Sajjad Wani, both of Haryana, have been arrested by NIA in the case. Gujarat police sources privy to the development said NIA teams had camped in Surat and Valsad for 2 days and had searched several premises connected with two suspects. However, the agency until now hasn’t been able to find any concrete proof to link the money to terror funding by LeT. Sources said NIA is not giving up and probing the case further. “We are pursuing every lead to unearth the links,” said an intelligence official. “We had information about the funding, but in the absence of direct evidence that the suspects were aware about the terror funding we couldn’t take any action against them,” said a top Gujarat police official. TOI
Mumbai: IS suspect held in 2016 seeks bail
Mumbai: Mohammed Rais, an ISIS supect arrested in August 2016 from Parbhani, is seeking bail contending that a prima facie case against him is not made out and hence NIA court can grant him bail using discretionary powers. Prosecution is yet to file reply on his plea. Advocate Sharif Shaikh along with advocate Abdul Rahim Bukhari contended before special NIA judge D.E. Kothalikar that there is no evidence against Rais that shows that prima facie a case under UAPA is made out against him and hence he is entitled for bail.The lawyers argued that there is a restriction to grant bail under UAPA however, that restriction is curtailed when there is no prima facie case made out against an accused and the court can grant bail to accuse using its discretionary powers given under section 43(D).According to applica-nt’s lawyer, the charges-heet has very weak evidence against Rais no incriminating recovery from him or at his stance and all Forensic science laboratory (FSL) reports about his belongings are also clear. They have claimed that the on-ly evidence against him as per prosecution is that he is author of an oath of affiliation with ISIS but that oath has been recovered from another accused at the instance of some other co-accused.They said that this letter and statements of few of his friends could be te-sted during the trial and hence there is no need to keep him behind bars. The prosecution is expe-cted to file its reply on Monday on this bail plea.Asianage
AIIMS Delhi faculty form seeks caste and religion data of senior doctors
New Delhi:In a move that has been described as “shocking” and “not justified” by senior doctors, including its Director, AIIMS in Delhi has asked its faculty to fill and submit a form that seeks details of their caste and religion among other requirements.The one-page form, which was distributed by AIIMS faculty cell last week, is aimed at creating “a database of all senior doctors”. Apart from name and age, the other details it asks for include those related to salary and appointment.When contacted, Dr Randeep Guleria, Director, AIIMS-Delhi, said he was “unaware” of such a form being distributed. “No senior doctor is ever asked about his or her caste and religion. I have not seen the form but even then it doesn’t make any sense. We, at AIIMS, are not bothered about the caste and religion of any doctor and it is not justified to ask these things,” Guleria said.“This is shocking. Why do they want to talk about the caste and religion of any doctor who is working in the hospital? Even during entrance examinations, students object to such questions,” said a senior doctor at AIIMS, who received the form and spoke on condition of anonymity. Former director of AIIMS, Dr MC Mishra, said he has never heard of such a question being asked of doctors. “In institutions like AIIMS, we should stay away from talking about this demography,” he said. indianexpress
Muzaffarnagar riots: UP govt directs officials to withdraw 18 cases
Muzaffarnagar : 9 months after it sought the opinion of the district administration on withdrawal of 131 cases related to the Muzaffarnagar riots, the state Govt  has directed them to file withdrawal applications for 18 such cases in court.District Govt  Counsel Rajiv Sharma said, “3 days ago, I received withdrawal application in 18 cases of Muzaffarnagar riots from state law department. It will soon be sent to court after examining of records. These cases were lodged under Rioting, Arms Act and dacoity charges. No public representatives are accused in any of them.” “The applications will be moved through Govt counsels in concerned courts. These 18 cases are among those on which Govt had sought details including opinion on withdrawal,”said ADM Amit Singh.In February last year, a delegation of ‘Khap Chaudharis’ led by BJP MP Sanjiv Balyan had met CM urging him to withdraw cases lodged against Hindus.indianexpress
Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid dispute case should be heard soon: Ravi Shankar Prasad
Patna: Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has said the Ayodhya case that has been pending for almost 70 years, should be heard soon as the people of the country expect the construction of a grand Ram temple where Babri Masjid once stood.Prasad said: "Ayodhya case has been pending for the last 70 years. Allahabad High Court order was in favour of the temple, but then it is on hold in the Supreme Court now. This matter should be cleared soon." He said that even PM  Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah have said that the matter should be resolved under a Constitutional ambit. The Minister said many people complain that many issues, including those relating to Sabarimala and adultery are heard expeditiously.  "But the people feel that the Ram temple matter should also be heard soon without any further delay," Prasad said, adding, "We all respect the SC, we have our faith in the judiciary."IANS
Taj Mahal not built by Muslims, it's a Shiv Mandir: Union minister Hegde
BJP leader and Union minister Anant Kumar Hegde said Taj Mahal was not built by Muslims and history is proof of this claim.Hegde, who in known for making outrageous statements that have often sparked controversy, again stoked the debate over the history of Taj Mahal.Hegde said, "Taj Mahal was not built by Muslims. Shah Jahan in his autobiography has said he bought this palace from King Jayasimha.""It's a Shiv Mandir that was built by King Paramatheertha, which was known as Tejo Mahalaya. Tejo Mahalaya became Taj Mahal. If we keep sleeping like this, most of our houses will also be renamed as masjids. In future, Lord Ram will be called Jahapana and Sita will become Bibi." Hegde didn't stop at that and continued elaborating on how history has to be written and rewritten.indiatoday
'Tiranga yatra' row: UP minister threatens to get AMU VC sacked: indiatimes
UP state minister Raghuraj Singh has threatened to get the vice chancellor of AMU sacked if any action is taken against the students, who took out Tiranga Yatra in the campus. Raghuraj Singh said that 26th Jan.is a festival for all Indians and anyone can take out a Tiranga Yatra. He said, “This university is being run with public money, not from VC’s personal account or Pakistan’s donations”. He said if Tiranga Yatra is not taken out in “Hindustan”, then will it be taken out in Pakistan or Bangladesh.BJP's MP from Aligarh, Satish Kumar Gautam, also shot off a letter on Friday to HRD minister Prakash Javadekar, seeking his intervention into the matter. In his letter, Gautam, who is also AMU’s court member questioned if it was unconstitutional to organise a patriotic event in any part of the country? With what mindset, did the administration send notice to the students? Meanwhile, former vice president of AMUSU, Nadeem Ansari has announced to burn a Saffron flag on Feb 20, if the university authorities do not taken any action against the students who took out Tiranga Yatra in the campus. Ansari alleged that the students who took out Tiranga Yatra actually wanted to repeat “Kasganj like violence”.
Remove Muslim in AMU as it’s uncomfortable:BJP MP
BJP’s Aligarh MP Satish Gautam has said that the term ‘Muslim’ in AMU’s name makes many people uncomfortable and it would be best to rename the over-a-century-old varsity.“Word ‘Muslim’ makes a large section of the society uncomfortable. It will be suitable to call its as Aligarh University,” Gautam said. Asked if Banaras Hindu University should also be renamed, BJP MP said, “India is a Hindu Rashtra and there is no point in removing ‘Hindu’ from BHU.” Gautam has been in news for his frequent tirade against AMU. TOI
Institutes of Eminence: IB names universities critical of Modi, reports The Print
IB sent Union Ministry of HRD a note last month, saying that those associated with universities like Ashoka University, KREA and Azim Premji University have been critical of the Govt , and of PM  Narendra Modi, The Print reported on Monday. Hence, the ministry has been reportedly hesitant to grant these universities Institute of Eminence tag.IB said that ex RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan, who has been critical of the Centre, is on the board of KREA University, which is located in Sri City, Andhra Pradesh. The college is yet to begin its first batch.IB’s note also said that Pratap Bhanu Mehta, who is the vice chancellor of Ashoka University, located in Haryana’s Sonepat, is an “unrelenting critic of the govt”. Agency added that the university’s founder-chairperson Ashish Dhawan “also funds anti-Govt propaganda sites like The Wire”. Dhawan is on the board of directors of Independent Public Spirited Media Foundation, which funds The Wire,according to report. The other colleges the agency has flagged including Jamia Hamdard), Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (Bhubaneswar),IIPH (Gandhinagar), OP Jindal Global University (Sonepat), and Vellore IT.scroll
Move to transfer Delhi HC’s Justice Muralidhar, stalled by Supreme Court judges
New Delhi:Shortly after sudden, unexplained reversal of the Supreme Court Collegium’s decisions on judicial appointments set off disquiet in the legal fraternity, there was a move in Collegium to transfer high-profile Justice S Muralidhar out of Delhi High Court, sources have confirmed.That move has been stalled, as of now, after members of the Collegium headed by CJI Ranjan Gogoi reportedly advised against it. One of them, Justice MB Lokur, retired recently, and the other, Justice A K Sikri, is due to retire in March. Sources said the proposal could be revived later.Sources said that the move to transfer Justice Muralidhar was discussed twice in Collegium for postings and transfers in HCs, in Dec and in Jan.Known for his bold pronouncements on communal violence and personal liberty,Justice Muralidhar, especially in 2018, authored many judgments which have been widely discussed. These include one concerning imprisonment of intellectuals and activists, including Gautam Navlakha, for alleged Maoist links. He delivered the Hashimpura verdict convicting members of UP PAC in the 1986 mass killings. It was a 2-judge bench led by him that convicted ex Congress MP Sajjan Kumar in a case related to the Sikh riots,in Dec.2018. indianexpress
Undergoing transformation…values of democracy at stake: Justice Sikri
Ahmedabad :Supreme Court judge Justice A K Sikri told a gathering of law graduates on Sunday that the “values of democracy are at stake”. Sikri said, “Today, we are undergoing transformation of a different kind. See the world at large. Even the values of democracy, which Greeks gave to this world 2,500 years ago, are at stake…there is a backsliding of democratic values.” “There are so many challenges, which we may be facing, of a different nature. In all this and in our constitutional scheme, judge has to perform a very vital role.One Ahron Barak, ex president of Supreme court of Israel, equal to our Chief Justice of India, has said there are two roles which a judge in a democracy is supposed to perform. One is to uphold the law and Constitution and save the democracy. Second is to bridge the gap between law and society. So, therefore, those of you who join judicial fraternity, these are the roles you have to perform in the challenging world.”indianexpress
"Assam Citizens List A Waste Of Paper":Ex-CM
Guwahati: Former Assam CM Tarun Gogoi described the National Register of Citizens (NRC) a "waste paper" and said it should have been linked to voters list."The whole exercise by spending crores of rupees to update NRC for detecting illegal foreigners have been wasted. The process was started in 2013 and in 5 years they (BJP Govt ) could not publish a correct NRC," the senior Congress leader said.NRC is a "waste paper and has become valueless now", Gogoi told a press conference in Guwahati.It should have been linked to the voters list till Jan.2019. Those over 40 lakh people left out of the complete draft of NRC are still in the voters list and they will cast their vote, he said."We (when Gogoi was the CM ) had impressed upon the Centre that a similar NRC updation exercise has to be taken up in all states and not exclusively in Assam," Gogoi added.Regarding the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, he said it has not only been opposed in Assam but also across the country with the BJP's allies -- the JD(U), Shiv Sena and most of the CM s in the northeastern states being against it.PTI
NDFB chief Daimary, 14 others convicted in 2008 Assam serial blasts case
National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) chief Ranjan Daimary and 14 others were today convicted by a CBI Special Court in 2008 case of serial bomb blasts that left 88 people dead in Assam.CBI Special Judge Aparesh Chakraborty convicted Daimary and 14 others under various sections of the IPC. The quantum of the judgment will be pronounced on Wednesday. Besides Daimary, the others convicted are George Bodo, B Tharai, Raju Sarkar, Nilim Daimary, Anchai Bodo, Indra Brahma, Loko Basumatary, Khargeswar Basumatary, Prabhat Bodo, Jayanta Bodo, Ajay Basumatary, Mridul Goyary, Mathuram Brahma and Rajen Goyary.PTI
It's not murder but culpable homicide if woman kills husband for calling her and daughter prostitutes: SC
New Delhi :It's not murder but culpable homicide if a woman killed her husband for calling her and their daughter ‘prostitutes,’ the Supreme Court has held.A woman in Indian society does not like to be provoked by being called a ‘prostitute.’ It is not murder but culpable homicide if she reacts to such a slur with deadly force, the Supreme Court said in a judgment, which is based on an appeal filed in a murder case from Tamil Nadu. The woman in question was having an extramarital affair. On the day of the incident, her husband called her and their elder daughter "prostitutes". Her lover, who is also their neighbour, intervened on the women's behalf, which enraged husband even more. The lover slapped the husband, and helped by the woman, strangled him. They burnt the body and disposed it off in a friend's car. The body was found 40 days later. The woman made an extra-judicial confession to the teacher of their village. Both the trial court and the Madras HC found the woman and her lover guilty of murder.Hearing the plea against the conviction, the Bench said the verbal insult amounted to a "sudden provocation", which led the woman lose the power of self-control. The husband was attacked and killed in the "fraction of a minute". thehindu
IRCTC scam: Delhi court grants bail to Lalu, Rabri, Tejashwi
New Delhi A Delhi court on Monday granted regular bail to former Bihar CM  Lalu Prasad Yadav, his wife Rabri Devi, son Tejashwi Yadav and others in connection with a money laundering case in the IRCTC scam.Special Judge Arun Bhardwaj of Patiala House Court granted the relief to the accused on a personal bond of Rs 1 lakh and one surety of like amount each and scheduled the next hearing for February 11.
Govt can’t present ‘full budget’, it will be unconstitutional:Yashwant Sinha
New Delhi:Former finance minister Yashwant Sinha has said that NDA Govt  cannot present an economic survey, bring a finance Bill or introduce new services during in interim budget and doing so will be unconstitutional. His comments come amid reports that BJP-led Govt may present a full Budget and not an interim one. Traditionally,in an election year, outgoing Govt  presents an interim budget or so-called vote on account. Although, several Govts, including Congress-led UPA in 2009,haven’t shied away from making policy pronouncements in interim budgets.“Those who say there is no rule against presenting a full budget, why do we have Article 116 in the constitution then? said Sinha, a finance minister in the previous NDA dispensation.HT
Rahul promises minimum income guarantee to poor if Congress returns to power
Congress president Rahul Gandhi announced on Monday that his party would ensure minimum income guarantee for every poor in the country if it returns to power after the Lok Sabha polls due in April-May.He accused PM  Narendra Modi and the ruling BJP of trying to create 2 Indias -- "one of the Rafale scam, Anil Ambani, Nirav Modi, Vijay Mallya, Mehul Choksi and the other of the poor farmers".Rahul Gandhi made these remarks at the 'Kisaan Abhaar Sammelan' held in Raipur to express gratitude to Chhattisgarh's people, particularly farmers, for voting the party to power in the state after a gap of 15 years."Congress has decided to take a historic decision... Congress-led Govt is going to give minimum income guarantee. This means, each poor person in India will have minimum income. This means there will be no hungry, poor people in India," Gandhi said.PTI
Chhattisgarh police set up team to probe alleged ‘fixing’ in 2014 Antagarh bypoll under BJP regime
Chhattisgarh Police have set up a 4-member team to probe the alleged fixing of Antagarh Assembly bypoll held in 2014 during the previous BJP regime in the state, a senior official said today.The team has been constituted under the supervision of IG of Police, Raipur Range, the official added."Complaints pertaining to 'Antagarh tape row' related to withdrawal of Congress candidate during by-election held for Antagarh Assembly constituency in 2014 were pending for investigation in Raipur and Kanker districts," said an order issued by state DGP D M Awasthi.In 2015-16, a CD audio tape was leaked which had purported conversations suggesting exchange of money to make Manturam Pawar, the Congress candidate in the 2014 Antagarh Assembly (Kanker district) bypoll, withdraw at the last minute to facilitate the BJP nominee's victory. Antagarh bypoll was won by BJP's Bhojraj Nag.PTI
Union Minister, After "Hindu Girl" Comment, Targets Rival's Muslim Wife
Bengaluru:Union Minister Anantkumar Hegde has plumbed new lows in public discourse with a series of inflammatory and wild statements. On Sunday,he declared at a public event that any hand that touches a Hindu girl "should not exist". This morning, he hit out at a Congress leader by dragging his Muslim wife into a Twitter spat."We have to rethink the priorities of our society. We shouldn't think of caste.If a Hindu girl is touched by a hand, then that hand should not exist," said Hegde in Karnataka's Kodagu, adding to a growing list of controversial, ill-considered comments. ndtv
In Gadkari's "Spin Dreams" Comment, Opposition Sees Message For PM
Mumbai: Union minister Nitin Gadkari, who recently made headlines with a series of cryptic comments seen as hidden messages to the BJP leadership, had more to say on Sunday. His words delighted Congress and Asaduddin Owaisi, who declared that Gadkari's message was for PM Narendra Modi."Political leaders are fond of spinning dreams, but if they cannot deliver it, they may take a beating from the people. So promise only what is possible," Gadkari said in Mumbai. "I'm not one of those who spin dreams. Whatever I say is with 100% authority," added the minister, who was seen sitting and chatting with Rahul Gandhi at Saturday's Republic Day function.Gadkari has launched an attack on PM Narendra Modi... Modi ji, the people are coming," tweeted the MP Congress, quoting the minister.ndtv
Ready to step down, says Kumaraswamy; signals fresh strain in Congress-JD(S) ties
Signalling a fresh strain in relations between Congress and JD(S), Karnataka CM  Kumaraswamy said he was ready to step down if the Grand Old Party does not control its MLAs. Kumaraswamy’s furious reaction came after a ruling Congress MLA demanded that Siddaramaiah be made CM again. “Congress leaders have to watch all that issues. I am not the concerned person for it. If they want to continue with it, I am ready to step down.They are crossing line…Congress leaders must control their MLAs,” JD(S) said.The development comes after MLA ST Somashekhar, head of Bengaluru Development Authority, claimed at an event on Sunday that development works had come to a grinding halt in the state.indianexpress
Removal of middlemen has kept Haj pilgrimage expense under control: Naqvi
Mumbai :Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi Monday claimed eliminating middlemen has ensured that Haj pilgrimage had not become expensive despite removal of Haj subsidy.Haj subsidy was removed last year in the light of a 2012 Supreme Court verdict.Speaking during the inaugural session of a training programme related to Haj , Naqvi said transparency ensured by Govt  meant there was no additional, unnecessary financial burden on pilgrims.He added that for the first time post-Independence, a record number of 1,75,025 Muslims from India, including about 48 %  women, performed Haj last year and that too sans any subsidy.PTI
Bharat Ratna: Owaisi questions Centre on choice of award recipients
Asaduddin Owaisi questioned the on its choice of recipients of the Bharat Ratna, the country’s highest civilian award.“Tell me out of the total Bharat Ratna awards given how many were Dalit, Adivasi, Muslim, poor, upper caste and Brahmin?” he said while addressing a rally in Kalyan in Thane. “Babasaheb was given Bharat Ratna, but out of compulsion and not by heart,” he said.Owaisi said Ambedkar deserved Bharat Ratna because he was the architect of the Constitution. Ambedkar was posthumously conferred Bharat Ratna in 1990.scroll
Ijtihad needed to tackle modern challenges to Islam: Khurshid
Jaipur : Former Union minister Salman Khurshid said there is a need to resort to ijtihad to interpret Islam to tackle modern challenges before the Muslim community.  "In modern and contemporary society, there is a great need for a serious look at ijtihad to interpret Islam in terms of modern challenges," said Khurshid, replying to a question on as to who speaks for Muslims in India. The problem, however, lies in acceptance of interpreters and their interpretations, he added.In India, we have Muslim Personal Law Board; lot of people accept it, but lot others do not," said Khurshid.Similarly, the country has the Supreme Court, but lot of people question if it is equipped to deal with the core of Islam, he added. Khurshid was speaking here at Jaipur Literary Festival session on 'Islam: Multiple Histories'.Rejecting any threat to Indian Muslim world from Wahhabism, an Islamic doctrine and religious movement, he highlighted the facts that Sufism and Bhakti andolan came together in India,which has imbibed ideas of Saint Kabir.PTI
Odisha: In Kendrapara, playground sparks tension
Kendrapara :Kendrapara town in eastern Odisha shows no visible signs of having gone through a near communal riot and curfew. The eateries, and auto repair and furniture shops, carry out brisk business. Young men on motorbikes speed through the narrow lanes. And a few flags hung near shop signs move listlessly in the breeze marking Republic Day.But early last week, the town came dangerously close to a major clash between members of a little-known “nationalist” organisation and local residents following an argument over using a school playground to mark the birth anniversaries of freedom fighters Subhas Chandra Bose and Veer Surendra Sai. “People have come to their senses after experiencing the inconvenience of a curfew,” says Mujibur Rehman, a resident and lawyer practicing in the district court. “There was similar trouble in 2008, and people had forgotten how it was.”Dispute arose over use of the playground by Kendapara unit of Rashtriya Suraksha Samiti, which describes itself as “a nationalist outfit HQRS in Nagpur”.Rehman says Samiti men may have been treated unfairly, but adds that Kendrapara’s 15,000 strong Muslim community had no role in the matter.indianexpress
BJP Corporator Among 15 Booked for Communal Clash in MP Town on Republic Day
Bhopal: 15 people, including a BJP corporator, were booked on Sunday for the communal clash that broke out in Khujner town in MP on Republic Day, a police officer said.5 of them have been arrested so far, he said. Prohibitory orders were clamped in the area, where two groups of different communities had clashed at a Republic Day function. Administration had imposed prohibitory orders under CrPC Section 144 in Khujner, he said. Inspector Ramkumar Raghuvanshi, said the situation in Khujner was under control.He said both the groups had lodged cross-complaints based on which 2 separate FIRs were filed.15 people from both the communities, including BJP corporator Kamal Yadav, were booked and 5 of them arrested, Raghuvanshi said. Yadav is not among those arrested.News18
Gujarat: Mosque opens doors to remove misconceptions about Islam
Ahmedabad: “Let us visit the mosque, see live namaz (prayer) and understand Islam.” This was a statement “inviting non-Muslims to understand Islam”, written in a poster outside a one-year-old mosque in Soni Chawl in the city, just 6km away from Naroda Patiya which witnessed a massacre taking the toll of 97 lives in the 2002 communal riots. Around 120 non-Muslims, mostly Hindus, men and women attended ‘Masjid Umar Bin Khattab” in the special gathering to make people aware of the tenets of Islam and to remove misconceptions about the religion. Organisers of the event – “Let Us Visit the Mosque” stressed that people from all religions should come and ask questions about Islam to know the basic principles of the religion and to remove prejudices. A Nikol resident, Pravin Patel, who runs an embroidery business, said that he had visited the mosque and learned why prayers were offered 5 times a day and how Islam gives the liberty to express your views. Pointing at a poster carrying an aayat  from Quran, he said that it is written that every person has a right to express his view.Moinuddin Nasrullah, trustee of the mosque, said, “Non-Muslims wonder what we Muslims do inside the masjid. Solution for this issue is to invite non-Muslims to a masjid. Some Muslims think that non-Muslims should not allowed to enter a mosque. The concept that non-Muslims cannot enter a mosque is not in line with the teachings of Prophet. At the time of Prophet, Jews and Christians could enter a mosque.” TOI
WORLD
All foreign forces will leave Afghan:Ashraf Ghani
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said on Monday all foreign forces will eventually leave the war-torn country - a key Taliban demand - as talks with the armed group progressed.Ghani said based on an international agreement, foreign troops will not be required in the future."No Afghans want foreign forces in their country for the long term,"Ghani said in a televised address."Current presence of foreign forces is based on need, and this need has always been contemplated and will be contemplated... And according to an exact and arranged plan, we are trying to bring down that number to zero," he said.The president's comments came as both US and Taliban officials hailed progress after 6 days of talks in Qatar ended on Saturday.A senior US Govt official told Reuters on Monday that Washington was committed to the withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan after 17 years of war.Official, who declined to be identified, described "significant progress" in discussions last week with Taliban leaders in Doha on foreign troops' pullout, but more negotiations were needed on a ceasefire and its timing.Abdul Hakim Mujahid, ex Taliban official and currently a member of the High Peace Council, an independent body of Muslim leaders and respected Afghan figures, said he believes the Qatar talks resulted in a "good understanding between both sides" but more discussions are needed in the coming weeks or months.aljazeera
Erdogan: Safe zones in Syria will allow refugees to return home
Turkey is aiming to form safe zones in northern Syria so that Syrian refugees hosted by Turkey could return to their home country, President Tayyip Erdogan said. Speaking in Istanbul, Erdogan also said nearly 300,000 Syrians had already returned to areas controlled by Turkish-backed rebels in northern Syria, adding that he expected millions of Syrian nationals to return to the proposed safe zones.Turkey hosts about 4 million Syrian refugees.On Friday, Erdogan said that Turkey expected the safe zone to be set up within a few months, otherwise, it would establish a buffer zone without the help of other nations. He added that the zone will aim to protect Turkey from "terrorists", referring to US-backed Syrian Kurdish militia that controls areas in northeastern Syria along the Turkish border.aljazeera
Over 600 US troops arrive in Syria to secure withdrawal
Over 600 additional US troops have arrived in Syria to provide protection to other American forces during their pullout from the war-torn country, Reuters reported local sources saying. The sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the additional troops arrived at US air bases in eastern Syria’s Harab Isk and Sarrin villages, which will be used as main evacuation centres in the event of withdrawal.US bases in the towns of Rmeilan and Tal-Baidar in Syria’s northwestern Al-Hasakah province will be used for airway of heavy weapons, the source added.A Pentagon official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, declined to comment on the number of troops being sent or their destination, citing security concerns, on Thursday.middleeastmonitor
Fatah: New Govt  will rule West Bank, Gaza Strip
Fatah said that the upcoming Govt , which will exclude Hamas and many other Palestinian factions, would rule the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, Al-Wattan Voice reported. Fatah said the new Govt  would look for unity and stressed that anyone who is hostile to it “must be an enemy of the Palestinians.”Official Fatah spokesman Atef Abu-Saif said: “We will not care about anyone who prefers to remain out of the national consensus… We want to serve out people; therefore, we want to form a Govt. ”He added: “This Govt  will be for the Palestinians in the West Bank,Jerusalem, Gaza Strip and diaspora. Hamas has nothing to do with it.”Abu-Said claimed: “PLO is the guardian of the PA as it represents all the Palestinian people.This Govt will represent all the Palestinians because it is of PLO. Anyone who obstructs it, he will be obstructing the Palestinians, PLO and the Palestinian state.”middleeastmonitor
Fatah discusses forming new Govt  without Hamas
Killing of Palestinian by Israeli settlers 'shocking': UN envoy
UN's Middle East envoy has termed the killing of a Palestinian man by Israeli settlers in the occupied West Bank "shocking and unacceptable".Nikolay Mladenov called on Israel to "put an end to settler violence and bring those responsible to justice".Hamdi Naasan, 38, succumbed to his wounds on Saturday near the village of al-Mugheir after Israeli settlers from the nearby illegal settlement of Adei Ad fired shots.According to the Palestinian health ministry, Naasan was shot with a live bullet in the back. At least 30 other Palestinians were injured, of whom 6 were shot with live ammunition, according to Maan news agency.aljazeera
Top Turkish diplomat meets UN rapporteur over Khashoggi
Ankara:Turkey’s foreign minister on Monday met with an UN official to discuss the killing last fall in Istanbul of a Saudi journalist.Mevlut Cavusoglu met with Agnes Callamard, UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, who is leading an international inquiry into the killing of Jamal Khashoggi, starting with a visit to Turkey starting today through next Sunday. Along with Cavusoglu and Callamard, the meeting in the official Foreign Ministry residence saw the attendance of several experts.Callamard and the experts will also meet Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gul. They are also expected to meet with Irfan Fidan, Istanbul's chief public prosecutor.Anadolu Agency
France's Macron to press Sisi on human rights in Cairo meet
French President Emmanuel Macron met with his Egyptian counterpart President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in Cairo aiming to raise concerns over human rights and boost ties between their countries.The two leaders met on Monday to oversee the signing of around 30 deals between Egypt and France worth several hundred million dollars.Shortly after his arrival in Egypt on Sunday, Macron said he would talk "more openly" with Sisi on human rights."Things have got worse since October 2017" when Sisi visited Paris, said Macron, referring to the human rights situation in the North African country.Sisi's Govt  is seen by Egyptian civil society as "more hardline than the regime of (Hosni) Mubarak", he said, referring to the longtime president who was deposed in 2011.aljazeera
Egypt keeps Rafah crossing closed, trapping Palestinians in Gaza
Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip are still unable to leave the enclave as Egyptian authorities continue to close the area’s sole crossing.Egypt opened Rafah crossing only to Palestinians stranded on its soil, allowing them to re-enter the Gaza Strip.Authorities had closed crossing on Thursday ahead of the anniversary of Jan.25 Revolution which led to the ousting of long time dictator and president Hosni Mubarak.MEMO
Venezuela: Guaido calls for more protests as Maduro displays military might
In a show of force, embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has met members of the armed forces and overseen the display of military hardware as opposition leader Juan Guaido, who is challenging his leadership, called for a new round of street protests. Maduro is confronting an unprecedented challenge to his authority after Guaido on Wednesday declared himself interim president before cheering supporters in the capital, Caracas, citing a fraudulent poll last year.Guaido urged all Venezuelans to take the streets in "peaceful protest" at midday  on Wednesday to ask for humanitarian aid to be allowed in the country amid an economic and political crisis that has led millions to flee in recent years, according to the UN.35-year-old leader of the opposition-dominated National Assembly also called on people from across Venezuela and from all over the world to hold mass demonstrations on Saturday to coincide with a EU ultimatum for fresh elections, which has been rejected by Maduro.aljazeera
flash: views & NEWS
Hate crimes in UP have changed lives forever: When I walk past, people shut their doors, says Muslim man falsely accused of cow slaughter:Kunal Purohit
Hate crimes in UP caused by combination of petty politics, gender issues and economics:Indiaspend
JNU: A sedition case that has many confused: Sourav Roy Barman
Fact Check: Bangladeshi woman's viral video is not of religious conversion but exorcism:Chayan Kundu
Degrees of Freedom: How an event three years ago has changed JNU:Aranya Shankar
‘Can only a Muslim raise community’s issues?’Jyoti Punwa
Patthalgarhi-II in Maharashtra district: Signboards warn visitors: indianexpress
Search for CBI Director Narrows to 10 Officers With Prior Experience in Agency: the wire

Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 5:39 PM)

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