News and views across the globe.

Thursday, 29 August 2019

29 AUG. ND: Post record transfer to govt, RBI contingency fund dips to Rs 1.96 lakh crore: Annual report/Constitutional Provisions not Followed in Abrogation of Article 370: Muslim organisations / Assam: Days before final NRC, many get notices to defend their citizenship claims again


NEWS DIGEST, EVENING 
29 AUG. 2019: 27 ZilHajj 1440:Vol: 11, No:279
INDIA: ECONOMY
Post record transfer to govt, RBI contingency fund dips to Rs 1.96 lakh crore: Annual report
New Delhi: Following RBI’s record transfer of Rs 1.76 lakh crore to Govt, RBI’s contingency fund, useful in fighting any exigency, has dipped to Rs 1.96 lakh crore as of June 30, according to RBI’s annual report for FY19. After payout to Govt, “balance in the contingency fund as of June 30, 2019, was Rs 1,96,344 crore compared to Rs 2,32,108 crore as of June 30, 2018,” annual report said.RBI’s transfer of Rs 1,76,501 crore to Govt comprised of Rs 1,23,414 crore of surplus for the year 2018-19 and Rs 52,637 crore of excess provisions identified as per the revised Economic Capital Framework (ECF) adopted at the meeting of the Central Board on Monday. The transferred amount is over 3 times 5-year average of Rs 53,000 crore.indianexpress
RBI says lack of domestic demand affecting ‘animal spirits’ of economy
RBI — in its annual report for 2018-19 — said it is the domestic demand that is holding back the animal spirits in the economy even as it acknowledges that the recent deceleration could be a cyclical one rather than deep structural slowdown.“What ails the animal spirits? At the core is the issue of domestic demand,” RBI said in the annual report.The policy focus at this point of time should be on continuing focus on improving ease of doing business, reforms in factors of production, faster implementation of capital expenditures by public authorities, among others.RBI said recent deceleration could be in the nature of a soft patch mutating into a cyclical downswing, rather than a deep structural slowdown. “Nonetheless, there are still structural issues in land, labour, agricultural marketing and the like, which need to be addressed. The disaggregated analysis confirms that a broadbased cyclical downturn is underway in several sectors — manufacturing; trade, hotels, transport, communication and broadcasting; construction; and agriculture,” RBI said.thehindu
After corporate debt, retail loans face stress amid unemployment, slowdown
Credit analysts are keeping a watchful eye on signs of stress in Indian household debt after unemployment rose to a 45-year high and as lenders grapple with the worst soured debt levels of any major economy.India’s bad debt malaise has centered on corporate debt, and loans to individuals have been seen as safer and a growth opportunity for banks. Given slowdown in economy and a drying-up of credit from shadow banks, analysts are signaling potential risks, though publicly available data on personal loan arrears is sparse.“There’s stress building up for sure in retail loans,”said Saswata Guha, director for financial institutions at Fitch Ratings. “Whether it manifests into higher defaults will depend on how the economy shapes from here.” Govt last week unveiled steps ranging from concessions on vehicle purchases to hastening of capital infusion in state-run banks to help re-ignite an economy that’s slowed sharply on the back of weak consumption.Defaults have increased funding pressure at India’s non-bank financiers -- historically an important provider of consumer loans. That’s curtailing their ability to provide loans, and having knock-on effects for consumption, according to Fitch. Bloomberg
Modi Govt's Decision to Place 26% Cap on FDI in ‘Digital Media’ Raises Questions
Modi Govt has announced that it would “permit” up to 26% FDI under the “Govt route” for digital media companies that upload or stream news and current affairs.This is a departure from existing policy, as until now only print media and news broadcast TV companies in India have had FDI caps of 26% and 49% respectively, while there have been no restrictions so far on foreign investors or entities running digital media ventures aimed at Indian consumers.Under the existing FDI policy, in fact, foreign investment up to 100% was permitted in digital media. Section 5.2 (a) of DIPP guidelines on foreign investment gives a list of sectors for which FDI up to indicated limit is allowed and notes:“In sectors/activities not listed below, FDI is permitted up to100% on the automatic route, subject to applicable laws/regulations; security and other conditionalities.” No official circular or gazette notification containing the precise details of the new policy has been made public yet, but a PIB release appears to liken the new FDI restrictions for ‘digital media’ to the existing limits on news television channels. At the moment, until further clarity from the Govt emerges, the new policy could potentially have large ripple effects throughout India’s digital media ecosystem. Jehil Thakkar, partner at Deloitte, said that Govt’s move may spur larger media players into carving out their own digital media ventures, but could also prove restrictive for smaller digital-only platforms. Thewire
Govt for 100% privatisation of Air India: Aviation  Minister
Govt would embark on “total” or 100% privatisation of Air India, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri said .A Group of Ministers (GoM) headed by Home Minister Amit Shah is likely to meet “in the next few days” to look into the proposal prepared by the Ministry of Civil Aviation and reviewed by the Committee of Secretaries at a recent meeting,  Puri said.
 J&K ISSUE
Kashmiris Note, Javadekar Says Being Unable to Communicate is 'Worst Punishment'
New Delhi: “Not being able to contact anyone, to talk to anyone, and not having any mode of communication — this can be the worst punishment.”No, that’s not a line from an editorial about the current situation in Kashmir. Believe it or not, Union information and broadcasting minister Prakash Javadekar said all of that with a straight face, without once mentioning the Centre’s current clampdown in the Valley.Today marks the 24th day on which mobile services, internet, broadband, landlines and postal services have been cut off in the Kashmir Valley.According to Indian Express, Javadekar was addressing an award function for community radio stations. “(People keeping everything to themselves, what can be a bigger punishment than not being able to say anything to anyone? Not being able to contact anyone, to talk to anyone, and not having any mode of communication — this can be the worst punishment.”At the same event, Javadekar lauded the Govt’s decision to read down Article 370, The Hindu reported, without a mention of how his own definition of the “worst punishment” is being meted out.thewire
BJP Minister Javadekar Accuses Indian Muslims of Backing Pakistan on Kashmir
New Delhi:In a dramatic ratcheting up of its political rhetoric on the situation in Kashmir – now in 23rd day of an unprecedented lockdown – Modi Govt on Wednesday indirectly accused the country’s Muslims of backing Pakistan against India.I&B minister Prakash Javadekar held a press conference to attack former Congress president Rahul Gandhi for giving Pakistan a “handle” to target India at UN over situation in Kashmir by having made comments critical of Govt policy. “Rahul Gandhi said that things in J&K were going wrong, there were reports of people dying in J&K. You were wrong, Rahul. Things are fine in J&K, there is no violence as you imagined. People haven’t died. Pakistan used his remarks. Pakistani application to UN mentions remarks made by Rahul Gandhi. The application states that acts of violence have been acknowledged by mainstream party leaders such as Rahul Gandhi,” Javadekar added. While attacking Gandhi, Javadekar also made a communal dig at Indian Muslims, using “Wayanad” – Gandhi’s Lok Sabha constituency in Kerala – as a dog whistle. However, his allegation that MP of Muslim-majority Wayanad was driven by “vote bank politics” to give Pakistan a “handle” against India at UN was as clear a statement as any that BJP believes Muslim citizens favour Pakistan over India. thewire
Constitutional Provisions not Followed in Abrogation of Article 370: Muslim organisations
New Delhi:In a belated reaction to the Kashmir issue, leading Muslim groups on Wednesday pointed out that the Constitutional provisions were not followed in the abrogation of the Article 370 and demanded that Govt should lift all restrictions and lockdown immediately and restore normalcy in J&K. Stressing on the unity and integrity of the country, they appealed to the youth not to indulge in spreading fake news on social media purveyed by irresponsible TV channels and media and inimical forces.Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind convened a consultative meeting of leading Muslim groups and leaders to discuss the grim situation in the state as an outcome of the crippling clampdown imposed on it in the aftermath of the revocation of Article 370 that guaranteed special status to J&K entered 24th day making the life of an average Kashmiri miserable. The meeting held at JUH HQRS has unanimously passed a very cautious resolution after deliberations. The resolution read:“Article 370 was incorporated in the constitution through due process of the law and it could only be revoked by due constitutional procedure. The manner in which this Article was revoked attracted some constitutional objections and propriety. At present, the matter is with the Supreme Court and we should repose faith in the judiciary and wait for its decision before taking any action.” “Until, it is proved that the removal of Article 370 (special status) was not in accordance with the constitutional provisions we should focus on protecting the basic human rights of the people of Kashmir, establishing peace, and restoring normalcy in the state. Lifting of curfew, communication lockdown, access to emergency services including healthcare, and opening of educational institutions must be done immediately,” resolution demanded. After meet, which was held under the leadership of JUH leader Maulana Qari Mohammad Usman Mansoorpuri, a joint statement was released by Jamiat general secretary Maulana Mahmood A. Madani. It was attended by representative of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, Jamiat Ahle Hadees Hind, All India Jakat Foundation, Jamiat-e-Ahle-Sunnat Karnataka, Muslim Majlis-e-Mushawarat and All India Muslim Personal Law Board caravandaily/  PTI 
Muslim bodies question way of abrogating Art 370
AMU drops Id get-together in solidarity with Kashmiris
The annual Id Milan will not be organised at AMU this year as the teachers’ association has said there cannot be a celebration “when the people of Kashmir have been subjected to unprecedented atrocities”.AMU Teachers’ Association held a meeting yesterdat to discuss several internal issues, including the date of Id Milan. But it concluded with a decision to express solidarity with people of J&K and decided against celebrations now.Najmul Islam, honorary secretary of AMUTA, said that it was for the first time in the history of the university that the Id Milan celebrations were being shelved.“We organise Id Milan, Holi Milan and an annual dinner for AMU staff every year. But this year, we feel that we should stand in solidarity with people of Kashmir and not organise Id Milan,”he said.telegraph india
Inside leaders’ lockdown in Kashmir: Frazzled nerves, hunger strike threat and a huddle in hotel
Before Aug.5, far from the noise of the street outside,Sher-e-Kashmir International Conference Centre here was an oasis of calm. Built by J&K’s political establishment and connected to Centaur Hotel, a high wall and a tight security ring fenced off lush manicured lawns that played venue to many a conference and concert. Today, it’s a “subsidiary jail”, its Reception lobby doubles up as the meeting area of a prison. Centaur is where almost entire top rung of Kashmir’s mainstream is detained. Only close relatives are allowed but not before they have applied to a DSP.Like over 50 men detained, their relatives — wives, children, mothers, sisters and parents — are all former VIPs. Until recently, their faces and names were a free pass through any official door in Kashmir. Today, they are frisked, questioned, allowed entry only after depositing everything — from handbags and phones to even sunglasses.After extensive interviews with officials and relatives of those detained, Indian Express has pieced together details from inside — an account of how the once political elite is now detained, their security personnel now prison guards and how they feel pushed against the wall in ways more than one.“We never even imagined such an experience. This is not a real jail but I can fully understand how difficult it is to have a loved one inside a jail,’’ said a relative who spoke on the condition of anonymity. “If you even mention my gender and relationship with the detainee, that can add to our hassle. They can refuse visitation rights.”A detainee’s relative said that for the first week, administration didn’t allow detainees to meet each other. “At the most, they met, briefly, at mealtime because it was difficult to serve meals to so many people separately. It was difficult because other than a few, no one among the detainees has had any experience of incarceration.” “We are now allowed to spend more time inside.”Among those in Centaur sub-jail are dozens of former legislators, ministers and leaders of almost all the mainstream parties of Kashmir. Except the detained 3 ex CMs, almost every mainstream politician is detained here.“It’s a little better than a real jail. Each one has been allowed a helper. The detainees look relatively more settled but there’s restlessness as the new reality sinks in,”said relative. “When I visited, I didn’t see any senior leaders of NC in the meeting place. There were few junior ones though. I heard Sagar Sahib (ex minister,senior NC leader Ali Sagar) is not keeping well. There were several people talking to Sajjad Lone in a corner. I saw Waheed Para (of PDP) sitting with his family members. He was dishevelled,I couldn’t recognise him first,’’relative said. Another relative who has also visited sub-jail several times in the last week said that Govt is “constantly approaching” detainees asking them to join the new arrangement. “They prepared a document, a sort of a bond, which they wanted them  to sign so that they could be released. They want an assurance they won’t carry out any political activity, not speak against Govt move, and in a way, stay indoors. I was told nobody has agreed to sign it”. “Each one of them (detainees) has two options,” said relative. “One is to resist; it will give legitimacy and izzat (respect) among people but the risk is too high, we will be treated worse than the separatists.Who knows whether it would be safe without security?Other option is to wait it out, see what happens.”indianexpress
Pak minister warns of full-blown war with India in Oct, Nov
Pakistan's Federal Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed has predicted a full-blown war between Pakistan and India in the months of October and November. Addressing an event in Rawalpindi, Ahmed said that this will be the last war between the two nations. Ahmed stated that he is on the path to prepare for this war.In his address, Ahmed said,"Kashmir is on brink of destruction due to barbarian and fascist Narendra Modi,and Pakistan is the only obstacle in front of him. Why is the rest of Muslim world silent over issue?"businesstoday
Gujarat coast on high alert after inputs of possible entry by Pak commandos
A high security alert has been sounded in Gujarat after intelligence agencies shared inputs about the possibility of Pakistan-trained commandos entering the Gulf of Kutch in Gujarat from Harami Nala creek area.BSF found 2 single-engine Pakistani boats abandoned in the 'Harami Nala' area and a search operation had been launched, a BSF spokesperson said. Fearing “underwater attacks,” by Pakistani commandos, security is up at all major ports such as the Kandla Port and Adani Port in Mundra and other infrastructures. Ports have directed shipping agents to inform their vessels and maintain a watch and report any suspicious activity to the Coast Guard, marine police stations or port control rooms.In an alert, authorities of Deendayal Port Trust in Kandla directed adoption of strict security measures.thehindu
Gulmarg placed on high alert following infiltration bids by militants
Gulmarg, Kashmir’s most visited tourist destination in Baramulla district, has been put on high alert after infiltration bids by militants in the past one week, and multiple attempts by the Pakistan Army to attack the forward posts, according to officers of the counter-insurgency grid in Srinagar.Sources in security agencies said Army’s Ustad and Gulab posts in the upper reaches of Gulmarg were posed with threats by armed men who sneaked two kilometres into this side of Kashmir. Sources said attacks were repulsed but the infiltrators remain untraced.Security agencies apprehended two persons, Khalid and Nazim, both residents of PoK’s Muzaffarabad, in Gulmarg range, 2 days ago.“They are being questioned on Pak rare attempts to engage troops in Gulmarg,” official said.thehindu
Kashmir dispute: BJP’s Khattar and Vikram Saini also feature in Pakistan’s letter to UN
A letter written by Pakistan to several UN officials about the Kashmir matter criticised India and used statements not only by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, but also by Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar.BJP lashed out at Gandhi after reports said Pakistan’s Minister for Human Rights Shireen Mazari had cited Congress leader’s remarks on Kashmir to back her arguments against India in her letter, written on Tuesday. The full letter, which listed alleged human rights abuses in Kashmir, was released by her ministry later. Under a section titled “Gender-based Violence as a Weapon of War”,Mazari mentioned remarks by BJP MLA Vikram Saini, who had said earlier this month that Muslim party workers should be happy after the Centre’s decisions as they “can now marry the white-skinned women of Kashmir”.Mazari also wrote about Khattar’s statement in which he appeared to joke about the suggestion that brides could be brought from Kashmir to improve the sex ratio of his state. She said in her letter that since August 5, there was a rise in Google search queries for “How to marry Kashmir women”. “This misogyny, hypersexualization and objectification of women in a conflict zone is not new to the State of India: it has systematically used Gender-Based Violence as a weapon of war in the disputed region of Kashmir,” Mazari claimed.scroll.in/
Qureshi writes to UNSC over 'developments' in Kashmir for fourth time since abrogation of Art 370
Pakistani foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Wednesday wrote to UNSC again on the "developments" in J&K. He has previously reached out to UNSC President on 1, 6, and 13 August, according to an official press release. "Foreign Minister further suggested to Security Council for doubling the number of UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) observers and persuading India to allow them to patrol on its side of LoC as well," the statement said.Apart from this, PM Imran Khan also held separate conversations with the French president Emmanuel Macron and Jordanian king Abdullah II over J&K.ANI
Come out for 30 minutes on Friday in solidarity with Kashmiris: Imran Khan to Pakistanis
Pakistan PM Imran Khan today urged the people of his country to come out on roads tomorrow and show solidarity with Kashmiris and against India’s decision to abrogate Article 370 that stripped J&K of its special status. Khan took to Twitter and mentioned a particular time he wanted people to come out.“I want all Pakistanis to come out tomorrow 12 noon -12.30 pm to show solidarity with Kashmiri people and send the Kashmiris in IOK a clear message that the entire Pakistani nation stands in solidarity with them & against Indian fascist oppression, the inhumane 24-day curfew,” he wrote on Twitter.indianexpress
India condemns ‘irresponsible statements by Pak leaders’ on internal matters
India has condemned the recent statements by the Pakistani leadership on J&K.“These are very irresponsible statements,”said Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar. He added that Pakistan was trying to project an alarmist situation.On the letter by Pakistan’s Minister for Human Rights Shireen Mazari to UN, Kumar said it was not even worth the paper on which it was written. “Don’t want to give credence to it by reacting,” he added. Kumar also confirmed that there has been no statement from Pakistan on closure of airspace. Pakistan’s Minister Fawad Chaudhry had said on Tuesday that Govt was considering completely closing the airspace to India. “What we understand is perhaps there were certain sectors which were temporarily closed, there have been NOTAM (a notice to airmen) which were issued that too for a certain period,” said Kumar.“Pakistan should behave like a normal neighbour, do normal talk, normal trade,” said Kumar. “This is not something that is happening from Pakistan. We would like them to behave like normal neighbours do, not push terrorists in neighbouring country.”scroll.in
Mobiles used more by terrorists, less by us so we stopped services: J&K guv
New Delhi:Defending the communication blockade, in force since August 5 when the Centre scrapped J&K’s special status, governor Satya Pal Malik on Wednesday said that mobile and internet services were mostly used by terrorists and Pakistan for “indoctrination and mobilisation” and thus the decision was taken to shut the services down.The governor added that mobile phone connectivity is being opened in Kupwara and Handwara districts and other districts will have the services soon.“The medium of phone and internet is used less by us and mostly by terrorists and Pakistanis as well as for mobilisation and indoctrination. It is a kind of weapon used against us so we have stopped it. Services will be resumed gradually,” said Malik.The governor said that every Kashmiri life is valuable and the administration does not want to lose out on even a single life. He said there has been no civilian casualty, only the few who got violent are injured,they also have below the waist injuries.Malik urged the youth of the erstwhile state to take part with “full vigour” in the 50,000 jobs that have been thrown open for them. HT
Never supported J&K blockade: PCI Chairman
Chairman of Press Council of India, Chandramauli Kumar Prasad,has  said that he did not support the communication blockade in Kashmir in the intervention petition of the Council in the Supreme Court.In a letter addressed to Chairman of The Hindu Group Publishing Private Ltd., N. Ram, he said a plain reading of the intervention application showed that he had “not supported communication blockade”, and he would be willing to resign if he was proved wrong.Last week, PCI sought to intervene in the petition filed by Kashmir Times executive editor Anuradha Bhasin, who challenged the restrictions imposed on communications in the State since August 5. Prasad, in his letter, a copy of which was released to reporters, said the very premise on which Ram’s comments at a meeting on Tuesday were made was a “blatant lie”.Ram, he said, was “greatly swayed by distorted media reports”.the hindu
Not a Reference to Specific UNSC Resolutions: Russia Clarifies Stand on Kashmir
For the first since UNSC informal consultations on the brewing India-Pakistan dispute, a senior Russian embassy official clarified that Russia had not made a reference to specific Kashmir UN resolutions, but was only mentioning the principle of non-interference in domestic affairs as stipulated the UN charter. UNSC held closed-door discussions on August 16 on India-Pak issue based on a request from China.Aa tweet from a senior Russian diplomatic representative at UN just ahead of the meeting had raised eyebrows, with its mention of UNSC resolutions in the same breath as Simla agreement for the first time. Russia’s deputy chief of mission Roman Babushkin addressed concerns about Russia’s position during the informal consultations – and specifically in reference to UNSC resolutions.“Let us make it very clear that there was no specific resolutions mentioned,” he said.thewire
J&K: Detained cleric solemnises nikah
Srinagar:Among the visitors, Wednesday at Centaur, a hotel on the banks of the Dal lake that currently serves as a detention centre for mainstream political leaders in J&K, were Bilal Ahmad and Ghulam Hussain.The two were part of a group that had travelled over 30 km from Sonawari in Bandipore to reach the Centaur. But unlike many others, they weren’t here to visit detained relatives. They had come to bring some cheer — and solemnise a nikah.The couple getting married, Barkat and Irfana, didn’t come but insisted that their relatives, including Ahmad and Hussain, get the nikah solemnised by Shia cleric Imran Reza Ansari. A senior leader of the Peoples Conference, Ansari is among those being detained at the Centaur.“Barkat and Irfana were represented by their attorneys. But relatives from both sides were present as the nikah was solemnised by Maulana sahib,” said a relative outside SKICC, which is connected to Centaur.indianexpress
OTHERS
Assam: Days before final NRC, many get notices to defend their citizenship claims again
Several people in Assam have been served notices informing them that their names have been struck off from NRC after a fresh round of verification. The notice asked them to appear before officials to defend their citizenship claims even as deadline to publish the final list is just 2 days away.Nazir Ahmed, a daily wage labourer from Biswanath district, received a notice from the local panchayat today. It said his wife, Lalvanu Khatun, has been excluded from NRC. Khatun’s name featured in draft NRC, which was published in 2018.However, after subsequent verification she was found to be ineligible, said the notice. “FT reject,” it read, hinting at a family-tree mismatch. “If you want to plead for your inclusion in final NRC, you are requested to appear for a hearing.”The hearing was to be held in less than three hours at 11 am at a centre located around 10 km away from Ahmed’s house. “There is one day before NRC comes out,” her nephew Aashiq Muhammad said. “And this happens.”Achar Ali and Salaha Khatun of Panibharal village also received similar notices. Both of them were asked to depose at the local block office, around 12 km away, in less than two hours. In Baksa district’s Jalah village, Montaj Ali’s family received a similar undated notice on Wednesday. Notice cited DVD (descendants of doubtful voters) as the reason for striking off their names. According to the family, person they had drawn their legacy to has no pending foreigner case against him.Several others have been served such notices and given only a few hours to make a fresh claim. All notices state that verification of these people was done under a rule of NRC that gives local field-level officers discretionary powers. “Local Registrar of Citizen Registration may at any time before final-publication of National Register of Indian Citizens in State of Assam cause or direct to cause verification of names of such persons considered necessary,”it said.scroll.in
NRC countdown: Families face split as D-day nears
Nayanmoni Das(14), a resident of a decades-old refugee settlement colony in Silchar town of Assam’s Cachar district, will not be included in updated NRC to be published on Aug.31 because her long-dead grandfather Prasanna Das is still marked as a Doubtful Voter (D-Voter) in the state’s electoral rolls.According to updation rules, a person declared foreigner by a Foreigners Tribunal (DF), a person marked Doubtful Voter (DV) by local poll officials or a person whose case is pending at an FT (PFT) and their descendants who have drawn ‘legacy’ from such persons will be excluded from NRC.Moreover, for children born after Dec.3,2004, it is mandatory that both parents (even the one from whom legacy is not drawn) is not a DF, DV or PFT, for inclusion into NRC. Like Nayanmoni, a large number of children stand to be excluded from the NRC. Central and state Govts have said that no one excluded from NRC will be put into detention camps, and will get a chance to file appeals within 120 days at an FT. There is no provision which discounts minors from appearing at FTs to appeal against their exclusion, according to lawyers. D-Voter category was introduced in Assam in 1997 to mark people in electoral rolls who were unable to prove their citizenship during verification. FTs are quasi-judicial bodies which opine whether a person is a foreigner. An FT sends notices to D-Voters and those against whom a reference has been made by the Border wing of Assam Police.But Nayamoni is clueless about citizenship conundrum. indianexpress
NRC in Assam draws international attention
Why keep War and Peace at home? HC to arrested activist
 Bombay High Court has asked Elgar Parishad-Koregaon Bhima case accused Vernon Gonsalves to explain why he kept "objectionable material" like a copy of Leo Tolstoy's "War and Peace" and some CDs at his home. Justice Sarang Kotwal, hearing the bail plea of Gonsalves and others, also said that "such books" and CDs indicated they contained some material against the nation.The classic novel about Russia during Napoleonic wars became a point of contention during the day's hearing after Pune Police probing the case said the book was part of the "highly incriminating evidence" it had seized from Gonsalves' house in Mumbai during raids a year ago.Police also read out the titles of several other books and CDs allegedly recovered from Gonsalves' house, which included CDs titled "Rajya Daman Virodhi" released by Kabir Kala Manch, "Marxist Archives" and "Jai Bhima Comrade"; books such as "War and Peace", "Understanding Maoists" and "RCP Review", and copies of a circular issued by the National Study Circle."The title of CD 'Rajya Daman Virodhi' itself suggests it has something against the State while 'War and Peace' is about a war in another country. Why did you (Gonsalves) keep objectionable material such as books like 'War and Peace', books and CDs at home? You will have to explain this to the court," said Justice Kotwal. Gonsalves was arrested by the Pune Police after raids at homes and offices of several activists in connection with the Elgar Parishad case. PTI
‘War and Peace’: Even PM Modi has flipped through Leo Tolstoy’s classic
Suspicion of child-lifting: Man taking 7-year-old nephew to doctor lynched in Sambhal
Meerut:A 40-year-old man accompanying his seven-year-old ailing nephew to a doctor was on Tuesday afternoon lynched by a mob on the suspicion that he was a child-lifter. The incident took place at Asalatpur Jarai village in Chandausi police station area of Sambhal district of UP.The brother of the deceased was seriously injured in the attack.Police have arrested 6 people and are conducting raids in the area to nab the other accused. According to police, Raju (40) and his brother Ram Avtar (42), residents of Chabra village in Sambhal, were taking their nephew Ravi to a doctor in Chandausi when the incident took place.“Raju and Ram first took the boy to a Community Health Centre at Reeth village, but the doctors there suggested them to take him to Chandausi as he was not getting respite from an acute stomach ache. On the way to Chandausi, the boy was screaming with pain. Residents of Asalatpur Jarai village, mistook them to be child-lifters and attacked them with iron rods, sticks and stones. Raju died on the spot. Ram was taken to a Chandausi hospital from where he was referred to a Moradabad hospital,”said in-charge of Chandausi Police Station.Madan Lal, brother of deceased, also alleged that the mob took away Rs 15,000 and a mobile phone from his brother.“6 persons have been arrested. We are conducting raids to arrest others,” said SP,  Yamuna Prasad.
Suspicion of child-lifting: Bihar mob assaults 5, including minor, police say 3 arrested
Patna : 2 cases have been lodged after 5 people, including a 9-year-old, were assaulted by a mob near Gaya on Sunday on the suspicion that they were child-lifters. One of FIRs has been lodged on a complaint by Mohammed Qaisar, one of the victims, in connection with the assault. The other has been lodged by forest officials, accusing Qaisar and 3 others of hunting down four doves — a protected species — at Maher forest near Gaya.According to Qaisar’s complaint, he, his friends Liyaqat Ali, Saif Ahmed, and Waliur Rahman and Rahman’s 9-year-old son were out for dinner. “We left Gaya in Saif’s car for Fuddi-Chanan village where an acquaintance Shivbalak Yadav lived. As Yadav was not home, we proceeded to Navagarh via Maher,” says the complaint.On the way, the complaint says, a group of 15 people stopped their car, accused them of being child-lifters and started beating them up with sticks. Rahman, who has suffered head injuries, has been shifted to a hospital in Ranchi and the three others are in hospitals in Patna.FIR has been lodged against 19 identified and 110 unidentified people and three people have been arrested, said police.Rahman’s sister Farhana said his brother and the others were out for a “litti-chokha party”. “Initially, the mob accused them of being child-lifters, but his son told them to let his father go. When the mob found that they are Muslims, they were assaulted again. My brother has blood clots in the lungs. His son has bruises all over,” she said, adding, “Mob assault has become a norm.”indianexpress
SC reserves order on Chidambaram’s bail plea, extends ED arrest shield till Sept 5
New Delhi :Supreme Court today reserved its order on Congress leader P Chidambaram’s petition seeking protection from arrest by the Enforcement Directorate in an alleged money laundering case till September 5. The court also asked the ED to submit the documents in a sealed cover.The former Union minister offered before the bench to remain in the custody of CBI till Monday. The apex court refused to comment on it after solicitor general Tushar Mehta said that extension of remand can only be done before the CBI court.indianexpress
Justice Sunil Gaur, Who Rejected Chidambaram's Bail Plea, Appointed Chairperson Of PMLA Appellate Tribunal
Justice Sunil Gaur, who rejected the anticipatory bail plea of former finance minister P. Chidambaram leading to his arrest by CBI, has been appointed as the chairperson of the Appellate Tribunal for Prevention of Money Laundering Act (ATPMLA).Delhi High Court judge, who replaces Justice Manmohan Singh as the chairperson, had kept his verdict on Chidambaram's plea reserved for seven months and pronounced the judgment just 72 hours before he retired.In his judgment on Aug.20, Justice Gaur said facts reveal that Chidambaram is "kingpin", key conspirator in INX Media case. The verdict said that the court is of prima facie opinion that custodial interrogation of Chidambaram is required for an effective investigation in the case.The immediate appointment of judges to tribunals and commissions has come under severe criticism over the past several years. Centre had, in Feb.2019, clarified there would be no cooling off period for the retired Supreme Court and High Court judges before they are appointed to any tribunal or commission.outlookindia
19 Burdwan blast case suspects plead guilty
19 of 31 Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen (JMB) Bangladesh accused in 2014 Khagragarh blast case pleaded guilty before a city court on Wednesday.Judge Siddhartha Kanjilal convicted them and decided to pronounce the quantum of punishment on August 30. The trial of the remaining 12 accused, including JMB leader Burhan Sheikh, will continue.“On August 21, the previous date of hearing, 19 accused had expressed their desire to plead guilty. The judge had said that even after their plea, their punishment will be pronounced after the completion of the trial. But when they pleaded guilty on Wednesday, the judge decided to pronounce their punishment on August 30,” a court officer said. Of 19 who pleaded guilty, two are women.Earlier this week, Calcutta police had arrested Mohammad Ejaz, who was heading JMB team in Bengal after the arrest of Kausar. Ejaz, who was hiding in Gaya, is a suspect in the Khagragarh case and a blast in Bodhgaya last year.telegraphindia
Babur neither visited Ayodhya nor demolished any temple: Hindu body tells SC
Mughal emperor Babur neither visited Ayodhya nor ordered demolition of the temple to construct a mosque in 1528 at the disputed Ram Janmbhoomi-Babri masjid site, a Hindu body claimed before the Supreme Court on Wednesday. 'Akhil Bhartiya Sri Ram Janam Bhoomi Punarudhar Samiti', a defendant in a lawsuit filed by a Muslim party in the case, referred to historical books like 'Tuzuk-i-Baburi or Baburnama', 'Humayunnama', 'Akbarnama' and 'Tuzuk-i-Jahangiri' before a 5-judge Constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, to highlight its point that none of these talked about the existence of Babri masjid.Advancing submissions on 14th day of the decades-old case, senior advocate P.N. Mishra, appearing for the Hindu body, said these books, specially 'Baburnama', did not talk about either destruction of the temple or construction of the Babri mosque in Ayodhjya by Mir Baki, the commander of the first Mughal emperor."Babur did not enter Ayodhya and therefore, he had no occasion to direct demolition of the temple and construction of the mosque in 1528 AD and moreover, there was no person with the name of Mir Baqi as his commander," Mishra told the bench which also comprised Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S A Nazeer.Mir Baki was not the commander who had led the invasion on Ayodhya, Mishra said leading the bench to ask him as to what he was trying to prove by referring to these historical books.What is your theory to the claim that the building has the characteristic of both mosque and temple... you say that structure was destroyed by Aurangzeb," the bench asked.It was established that Babur did not make the mosque and it was built by Aurangzeb who destroyed temples at places like Mathura and Kashi, Mishra responded, adding that in a civil lawsuit the defendant's duty is to disprove the case of the plaintiff.Mishra said that he would refer to Islamic law and 'Hadith' to establish the fact that "usurpation" of other's property in Islam was 'haram' (prohibited).The advancing of arguments would continue on Thursday.PTI
Don’t want another Unnao: SC lawyers file petition in Chinmayanand sexual harassment case
New Delhi:A group of Supreme Court lawyers has filed a petition to CJI to take suo motu cognizance of media reports of a missing law student in UP's Shahjahanpur.The girl went missing after she accused BJP leader Chinmayanand of sexual harassment. In their petition, the Supreme Court lawyers said they did not want a repeat of the Unnao rape case.The girl is a student of Swami Shukdevanand Postgraduate College in Shahjahanpur, and on August 23, she had posted a video on Facebook where she alleged that Chinmayanand had threatened to kill her and her family if she made the evidence of abuse public.The case has a striking similarity to the Unnao rape case in which BJP strongman Kuldeep Singh Sengar is the main accused. Unnao rape case has witnessed a series of mysterious deaths, starting from the arrest and custodial death of the victim's father, to the death of the witness who testified on the death of the father.A counter-complaint has also been lodged by the supporters of Swami Chinmayanand. According to the counter-complaint, an anonymous call was made to Chinmayanand demanding Rs 5 crore. India Today
6th Death Anniversary of Youths Whose Killing Led to Muzaffarnagar Riots Observed, Balyan Attends Ceremony
Muzaffarnagar: Union minister and local BJP MP Sanjeev Balyan and party MLAs on Wednesday attended a ceremony held here amid tight security to mark the sixth death anniversary of two youths whose killing is believed to have triggered communal riots in Muzaffarnagar and adjoining areas in 2013.Prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the CrPC were imposed in Jansath tehsil to maintain law and order and security was beefed up with additional police deployment in Kawal and Malikpura villages.A 'havan' was organised in Malikpura village in memory of Sachin and Gaurav. Muzaffarnagar MP Balyan, BJP MLAs Vikram Saini (Khatauli) and Umesh Malik (Budhana), a number of party activists and family members of the deceased attended a 'shradhanjli sabha'. Sachin, Gaurav and Shahnawaz were killed in Kawal village after a quarrel on August 27, 2013.PTI
MP HC Chief Justice Appointment: Have received communication from justice dept, says CJI
New Delhi : CJI Ranjan Gogoi HAS said he had received a “communication” from the Govt regarding Supreme Court Collegium’s recommendation to elevate Justice Akil Kureshi as Chief Justice of MP High Court and that it will now be placed before the Collegium.“A communication has been received by office of CJI, on the administrative side, from the Department of Justice. The same will be put up before the Collegium in due course,” said CJI, sitting with Justices S A Bobde and S Abdul Nazeer.The bench said it will hear the matter next “once the decision of Collegium is taken on the basis of response/communication of the Department of Justice”. CJI did not say anything about content of communication.indianexpress
‘Can’t eat with Dalit, SC, ST’: Primary students bring separate plates for mid-day meals in UP’s Ballia
Rampur:Some students at a primary school in Rampur were found to bring plates from their home for mid-day meals and eat separately from those belonging to the SC, ST and Dalit communities.According to one student from school, “Anyone can eat in the plates available in schools, so we bring separate plates from home.”P Gupta, Principal of Rampur primary school said the practice prevails despite school authorities asking students not to do so.“We ask students to sit together and eat but they go separate ways as soon as we leave. Maybe they’ve learnt it from home. We’ve tried a lot to teach them that they’re all equals but students from upper caste try to stay away from those of lower-caste.”ANI
ISIS case: NIA raids at 5 places in Coimbatore
New Delhi : NIA today conducted raids at 5 locations in Tamil Nadu’s Coimbatore district as part of its ongoing investigation into the alleged IS module in the state. The searches came days after the Govt had sounded a high alert following inputs that a LeT group had entered the state.The searches today were held based on warrants issued by a special NIA court, Ernakulam, agency said later in a release houses.indianexpress
Mothers of Rohith Vemula, Payal Tadvi move SC for putting end to caste bias in campuses
The mothers of Rohith Vemula and Payal Tadvi, who had allegedly committed suicide following alleged caste-based discrimination, have moved the Supreme Court seeking to end such bias in universities and other higher education institutions across the country.While Vemula, a PhD scholar at Hyderabad Central University had committed suicide, following alleged caste bias, Tadvi, a tribal student at TN Topiwala National Medical College, committed suicide on May 22 this year due to alleged caste-based discrimination by three doctors in her college. The plea said it seeks to enforce the fundamental rights, particularly the Right to Equality, Right to Prohibition of Discrimination against caste, and the Right to Life. PTI
WORLD
Anger Over PM Boris Johnson's Decision to Suspend UK Parliament Spills On Streets
The flurry of resignations anticipated following British PM Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend Parliament did not happen on Wednesday, but the fallout did spill onto the streets of London, with a mass protest organised at short notice outside the Houses of Parliament.In addition, a petition against Johnson’s plan had already exceeded one million signatures at the time of writing, as the public outrage rumbled on.Scottish Conservative Party leader, Ruth Davidson, was the only senior Tory expected to quit her role as a result of the proroguing of Parliament, despite other senior Tories, such as Amber Rudd, previously indicating their disapproval of the controversial notion.Rudd lamented the expected loss of Davidson in a tweet but did not comment on her own position. “Ruth Davidson is a wonderful talent and person, and we owe her a tremendous debt for turning our fortunes around in Scotland. Our Party is a better one with her in it and I hope she will continue to contribute to public life.”Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn described the proroguing as a “constitutional outrage” while Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson said Johnson’s move was “dangerous and unacceptable.”Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was quick to condemn PM’s decision too. Thousands of people rushed hurriedly to Parliament Square, at just a few hours notice, largely prompted under the social media hashtag #StopTheCoup as protesters and politicians alike compared Johnson’s actions to those of a tin-pot dictator.DW
US won't release peace plan before Israeli election
US will not release the long-delayed political portion of its Israeli-Palestinian peace plan before Israel's elections next month, White House Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt said on Wednesday.The move, announced in a tweet by Greenblatt, keeps the plan's details from becoming an issue in the election, in which the leadership of PM Benjamin Netanyahu, a close ally of US President Donald Trump, is at stake."We have decided that we will not be releasing the peace vision (or parts of it) prior to Israeli election," Greenblatt said.aljazeera
N. Zealand suspends funding to Palestinians via UNRWA
Govt of New Zealand has withdrawn and suspended funding to UN aid agency which provides support for Palestinians.The country’s suspension of aid and financial contribution to the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) is to be implemented until the release of a report by UN’s Office of Internal Oversight Services in Oct, which would detail allegations of misconduct, corruption, links to terror groups, and anti-Semitism that have been levelled against the agency.A statement released by New Zealand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that “We expect UNRWA to cooperate fully with the investigation under way and to report back on the investigation’s findings and recommendations.” It added that “Ministry will review the findings of UN OIOS report once the investigation is complete and, after that point, will provide advice to Minister of Foreign Affairs on future funding.” Middleeastmonitor
Honduras recognises Jerusalem as Israel’s capital
Honduran announced has that President Juan Orlando Hern├índez is paying an official visit to Israel tomorrow to open the country’s diplomatic office in Jerusalem, recognising the occupied city as Israel’s capital, news agencies said. MEMO
Republic of Nauru recognises Jerusalem as Israel’s capital
Republic of Nauru has recognised Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, following in the footsteps of the US, Guatemala and Honduras. Nauru – a tiny island located in the Pacific Ocean, northeast of Australia – announced its decision in a letter to Israel’s UN mission in New York.middleeastmonitor
US Taliban 'close' to a peace deal: Afghan group
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/08/taliban-close-peace-deal-afghan-group-spokesman-190828114246759.html                                        
Doha:Taliban and US are "close" to finalising a peace agreement in their talks in the Qatari capital aimed at ending the 18-year Afghanistan war, the group's representative has said. Taliban's political spokesman in Doha, Suhail Shaheen, said the two sides were finalising the agreement during the ninth round of negotiations, which entered their seventh day on Wednesday."Talks continue today [Wednesday] and we have reached the last point of the agreement," Shaheen said." Final point is the implementation and the mechanism of the deal which is being discussed," he said. The deal would see US and other foreign forces gradually withdraw from Afghanistan in exchange for a commitment by Taliban that the country will not be used as a launchpad for global attacks.After the two sides agree on the two central issues, a separate dialogue on ensuring a permanent ceasefire and a power-sharing agreement between Afghan Govt and the Taliban are expected to take place in the form of intra-Afghan talks. aljazeera
Taliban kills 14 pro-Govt fighters in Afghanistan
Taliban fighters have killed at least 14 members of a pro-Govt militia in Afghanistan, officials said, as the group aims to reach a deal with the US to end the 18-year war.Govt officials said on Wednesday that several civilians were wounded in the clashes in the western province of Herat. Aljazeera
Taliban hints at possible dialogue with India: The Hindu
New Delhi: There has been an increased interest inside the Taliban about a possible dialogue with India, according to a source privy to Taliban. Taliban would consider, if India wished to talk, the source maintained.Reports of this tentative and cautious approach comes even as spokesperson of the Taliban political office Suhail Shaheen declared in a social media post that their political team would discuss the last points of the agreement with US team led by Special Representative Zalmay Khalilzad.Neither India nor Taliban have held any direct talks over the last 2 decades. The source said Taliban had adopted dialogue as a policy for the future of Afghanistan. “Like other countries, India too can be a dialogue partner.”A major issue between 2 sides was hijacking of Indian Airlines aircraft IC814 in 1999 that led to a protracted negotiation with the militant group mediated by Taliban in the Kandahar airport. The source claimed that the circumstances at that time were imposed on it. “Taking aircraft is against our stated policy. We were pushed into the middle of this incident and tried to resolve the situation as peacefully as possible. Back then, Indian Govt had expressed its appreciation to the Taliban for the release of the aircraft and the hostages,” said senior source over phone, urging strict anonymity. Source said that India’s appreciation was conveyed to a senior member of Afghan negotiating team at the Kandahar airport.During UPA rule, some reports suggested covert meetings between Taliban and India but they were never officially confirmed. Govt of India had appointed a special envoy to look after India’s interests in Afghanistan during the tenure of PM Manmohan Singh.Apart from the US, China, Russia and Iran held talks with the outfit as the UN sanctions on members of the political group were lifted earlier this year, making it easier for the 14-member Taliban political team to travel. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif hinted that Tehran could help India initiate a dialogue with the outfit.
Ready to be guarantor for Afghan Peace Deal: Russia
 Russia is ready to be a guarantor of any peace deal for Afghanistan agreed between the United States and the Taliban, Russian foreign ministry said."Russian side is ready to be the third party at the signing or a guarantor of how the deal between US and Taliban movement is implemented," TASS quoted ministry spokeswoman as saying. Reuters
‘Pak Launches Ballistic Missile Ghaznavi ‘
 Pakistan has successfully test-fired nuclear-capable surface-to-surface ballistic missile 'Ghaznavi' with a range of up to 290 kms, Pakistani army said today, amid fresh Indo-Pak tensions after India revoked J&K's special status.Pakistan military's media spokesman, Major General Asif Ghafoor shared a video of "night-training launch" of short range ballistic missile on Twitter. Ghaznavi missile is capable of delivering multiple types of warheads up to 290 kms, that could cover parts of India.PTI
Yemen: Southern separatists regain control of Aden
Separatists in Yemen regained full control of the country's interim capital, Aden, after at least 30 Govt forces loyal to President Abd-Rabbo Mansour Hadi were killed in the battle for the city.Yemen's Govt accused UAE, who back STC separatists, of launching the attacks against its soldiers."The Yemeni Govt condemns the Emirati air strikes against Govt forces in the interim capital Aden and in Zinjibar, which resulted in civilian and military casualties," Deputy Foreign Minister Mohammad al-Hadhrami said in a tweet.aljazeera
Prince Khaled  Bin Salman arrives in US amid news about a secret meeting with Houthis
Saudi Deputy Defence Minister Prince Khaled bin Salman arrived in US on Tuesday for an official visit during which he is expected to discuss the latest developments in Yemen with US officials.Prince Khaled, the brother of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, is supposed to meet with a number of officials to discuss bilateral relations and issues of common interest, promoting the security and stability of the region, according to Saudi Press Agency, SPA.However, Wall Street Journal reported that Prince Khaled’s visit coincided with the US President Donald Trump administration seeking to “launch secret direct negotiations between Saudi Arabia and the Houthis to put an end to the war in Yemen.”“The negotiations are scheduled to take place in Oman,” the paper revealed. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will meet the Saudi Deputy Defence Secretary in an attempt to convince Saudi Arabia, leader of the Arab coalition, of the importance of diplomacy and negotiation to ensure a ceasefire in Yemen.”MEMO
Saudi alters Ottoman Empire to occupation in textbooks
Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Education has made a series of modifications to its history textbooks altering the legacy of the Ottoman Empire and its former rule over parts of the Arabian Peninsula.While former curriculum taught the topic referencing the Ottoman Caliphate, the new curriculum will now cover the Empire’s “occupation”, crimes and subsequent collapse to pupils in the lower years of high school.Among the crimes the Saudi text books will level against the Ottoman rule are “Fighting with the first and second Saudi states; supporting some local leaders against King Abdul Aziz; destroying Diriyah and surrounding towns; as well as many parts of Zahran and Asir, besides torturing Imam Abdullah Bin Saud, the last imam of the first Saudi state, and assassinating him after taking him to Istanbul.”The curriculum also accuses the Ottoman Govt of having divided the Arabs of the Peninsula, stating: “Arab land that came under the subjugation of the Ottoman administrative regime were divided into at least 15 states and each state was administered by a governor. middleeastmonitor
Flash: NEWS,views,Articles
Govt should enshrine in law, composition, tenure, functions and work procedure of the panel:Tahir Mahmood
Silence is the Loudest Sound:Echoes of fascism in the Kashmir Valley:Arundhati Roy
India Is Shooting Itself in Foot in Kashmir: Pankaj Mishra
Draconian, undemocratic and a human-rights violation: David Kaye, UN rights-expert, on Kashmir
In the Idea of an 'All India NRC', Echoes of Reich Citizenship Law:Nizam Pasha
How Children Are Being ‘Picked Up’ in Night Raids Across Kashmir:Aditya Menon
Kashmir is the Test Bed for a New Model of Internal Colonialism:Partha Chatterjee
My Anti-National Bookshelf Could Get Me Into Trouble:Sidharth Bhatia
Kashmir is the Test Bed for a New Model of Internal Colonialism:Partha Chatterjee
There Is Only Fear and No 'Freedom' in the Northeast and J&K:Ngurang Reena
'Plz Papa contact me': TV channel offers last line of contact to cut-off Kashmir: the guardian
Dear Minister: For Heaven's Sake, Stop Peddling Pseudoscience:C.P. Rajendran
Objectionable? 'War and Peace' in Marathi is Printed by State Govt Itself!:Amey Tirodkar
ADM Jabalpur was a test for the SC. Only the dissenter passed it:Seema Chishti
Does War & Peace taunt show how poorly equipped Indian judges are to handle security cases?theprint
HRD Minister Pokhriyal Claims to Be 'Doctor’, But May Not Even Be a Graduate:Gaurav Vivek Bhatnagar
Opinion: Arundhati Roy has no reason to apologise for her statement about Pakistan, Indian armies:Taqbir Huda
Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq,(Released at: 8:03 PM)

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