Monday, 24 February 2020

24 FEB. MIDDAY NEWS: Delhi Maujpur-Babarpur violence: Police constable dead as clashes break out over CAA/ Shaheen Bagh protests: Interlocutors file report in sealed cover in SC, neat hearing to Feb 26/ Over 300 People Booked for Violence in Aligarh During Anti-CAA Protest/ Anti-Muslim sentiment permeates policies of both India and US;Amnesty as Trump meets Modi/‘Will sign defence deal worth $3 billion tomorrow’: Trump announces in Ahmedabad


NEWS DIGEST, MIDDAY
 24 Feb.  2020: 29 Jamadi-2, 1441: Vol: 12, No: 140
*anti-CAA,NRC-NPR stir*
Delhi Maujpur-Babarpur violence: Police constable dead as clashes break out over CAA
https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/delhi/northeast-delhi-caa-protests-maujpur-babarpur-jaffrabad-live-updates-6284098/New Delhi :Clashes broke out in northeast Delhi Maujpur area for the second consecutive day as pro and anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protesters pelted stones at each other on Monday. Police had to fire tear gas shells to disperse the protesters. One police constable was killed during the clashes.Stone pelting incidents were reported near Maujpur Babarpur Metro Station while some vehicles were set on fire in Yamuna Vihar. At least two vehicles and a fire tender were torched in Jaffrabad and Maujpur. Head constable killed during clashes over CAA in northeast Delhi, says Delhi Police. Dr Rajesh Kalra additional MS at GTB said, “One Constable was brought dead and the DCP suffered sustained head injury and has been shifted to Max Hospital, Patparganj."The injured have been taken to GTB hospital.Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) closed the entry and exit gates of Jaffrabad and Maujpur-Babarpur stations. Trains will not be halting at these stations.Meanwhile, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal took notice of the violence and urged the Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal and Home Minister Amit Shah to restore law and order in the area. “Very distressing news regarding disturbance of peace and harmony in parts of Delhi coming in. I sincerely urge Hon’ble LG n Hon’ble Union Home Minister to restore law and order n ensure that peace and harmony is maintained. Nobody should be allowed to orchestrate flagrations,” he tweeted.Today's violence comes on the heels of stone throwing on Sunday afternoon near the Jafrabad area in the national capital, where a protest against CAA, has been on since Saturday night.The peaceful protest at Jafrabad, where over 1,000 women - inspired by the now-iconic Shaheen Bagh protests - have gathered, is around 1 km away from the scene of today's violence.Sunday's violence broke out after local BJP leader Kapil Mishra, who has a history of making communal and incendiary comments, held a pro-CAA rally in the area.INDIAN EXPRESS  /NDTV
Situation tense in northeast Delhi as pro, anti-CAA protesters clash in Maujpur, for 2nd time in 24 hours
Situation tense in northeast Delhi as pro and anti-CAA protesters clash in Maujpur
Anti-CAA Protesters Lathi-Charged by Police in Delhi’s Hauz Rani
A group of anti-CAA protestors, who have been on a sit-in at Gandhi Park in south Delhi's Hauz Rani for the last one month, took out a march towards the main road on Sunday.Sources told The Quint that the protesters were marching peacefully when the police force lathi-charged. They further mentioned that due to the stampede children, women were also hurt. However, the police have refuted the charge.As per the sources, people who were injured in the lathi-charge and the stampede were taken to hospital.Later, the protestors also asked the shopkeepers in the area to close down their shop and sat at one corner of the road outside the park.However, barricades were placed on the road to stop them from marching ahead. The protestors returned to the park, while others left the venue.The Quint
4 cases registered in Feb 23 violence:Delhi Police
JCP(Eastern Range) Alok Kumar, on Monday said that 4 cases have been registered in connection with the incidents of violence that occurred on Feb.23 at different locations across Delhi. "4 cases have been registered - one each in Jaffarabad and Welcome, and two cases in Dayalpur. The people involved are being identified," Kumar said.On Sunday, clashes started after two groups, one protesting against CAA and the other supporting it came face to face in Maujpur.ANI 
Shaheen Bagh protests:  Interlocutors file report in sealed cover in SC, court defers hearing to Feb 26
The Supreme Court-appointed interlocutors on Monday handed over a report of their 4-day endeavour to coax Shaheen Bagh protesters to shift their agitation against CAA to an alternative site, conveniently out of the way of traffic and public movement.A Bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and K.M. Joseph took the yellow-enveloped reports proferred by interlocutors, senior advocate Sanjay Hegde and Sadhana Ramachandran, in the courtroom. “We will go through the report. We will list the case for hearing day after tomorrow,” Justice Kaul said. The court refused to even give a copy of the report to the petitioner-advocate,Amit Sahni. “We are not even putting it (report) on record... Let us go through it first,” Justice Kaul said.The matter would be heard on Feb.26. thehindu
Delhi court rejects clean chit given to Manish Sisodia in Jamia violence tweet case
A Delhi court today directed Delhi Police Commissioner to submit a fresh report on the complaint about Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia's tweet alleging "police personnel of setting Delhi Transport Corporation buses on fire".Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Vishal Pahuja, after hearing arguments in the matter, rejected the clean chit given to Sisodia in the matter and directed the commissioner to file a fresh report by March 17. Complainant advocate Alakh Alok Srivastava strongly objected to Delhi Police report, which stated that no cognizable offence is made out against him.During the hearing, the court recorded serious objections by the complaint on ATR filed by Tilak Marg Police Station, in which they had said they have not even received the complaint.ANI
Uneasy calm in Aligarh day after clashes between police, anti-CAA protesters
Aligarh: Uneasy calm prevailed in localities under the Kotwali and the Delhi Gate police stations here on Monday, a day after incidents of arson and group clashes. "No untoward incident has been reported from any place since Sunday evening," ADGP, Agra zone, Ajay Anand told .Some shops in the old city area opened Monday morning although a majority kept shutters down.The district authorities, who are maintaining a tight vigil, were seen persuading shop owners to open for business. According to police sources, 350 people have been booked at Kotwali, Delhi Gate and Civil Lines police stations for Sunday's incidents.DM Chandra Bhushan Singh warned that any attempt to spread rumours would be dealt with an iron hand and NSA would be invoked in such cases.He also announced that internet services would continue to remain suspended till midnight on Monday.PTI
CAA protests: Aligarh DM blames women students of AMU for violence on Sunday
After clashes between UP Police and anti-CAA protestors in Uparkot area of Aligarh on Sunday evening, DM has claimed that the women students of AMU instigated the protestors. Chandra Bhushan Singh said their roles will be investigated.“Some women students from AMU are behind this, we are trying to identify them,” he said, according to India Today. “We are ascertaining the damage caused by rioters and it will be recovered from them. The situation is under control now,” he said. At least 6 people were injured in the clashes. A hospital spokesperson said Mohammad Ibrahim, 25, had pellet injury in his left eye. The spokesperson added that while doctors had operated on him, he could lose his vision in that eye. ADGP said Mohamad Tariq Munawwar (22), who received gunshot injuries on Sunday's violence, is now stable and has been shifted to ICU at Trauma Centre of Jawahar Lal Nehru hospital, AMU after doctors performed an emergency surgery on him. Doctors at the hospital said Tariq had a firearm injury on left side of his chest.scroll/PTI
Over 300 People Booked for Violence in Aligarh During Anti-CAA Protest
Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh police have booked around 300 unidentified and 40 named people for violence during the anti-CAA and NPR protest in Aligarh on Sunday.These cases have been registered at Delhi Gate, City Kotwali and Civil Lines police stations.“Trouble makers have been identified and strict action will be taken against them,” said Aligarh SSP Muniraj.news18
Govt sending people to raise pro-Pakistan slogans during anti-CAA protests: Ex UP Governor Qureshi
 Sambhal:Former Uttar Pradesh Governor Aziz Qureshi today alleged that government was sending people to raise 'pro-Pakistan' slogans during anti-CAA protests as part of a conspiracy. Qureshi termed police action on protesters in Aligarh and Delhi as "barbarism" and said when those sitting in the government feel defeated, they indulge in firing and lathi charge."The followers of Hitler sitting in the government have got their people to sit along with anti-CAA protesters, raise Pakistan 'zindabad' slogans and indulge in vandalism and arson to make it look like violent protests. This has led to firing by the police. All this has been done in a very planned manner," he told reporters. Attacking BJP and RSS, he alleged that they had "mischievous plans" for Indian Muslims who are being targeted."Just as Hitler set up camps , the central government was setting up detention camps and all this is being done to divide the country," he said. PTI
Bihar: NPR will be updated like in 2010, NRC won’t be implemented, says Nitish Kumar
Bihar CM Nitish Kumar has reiterated that NRC would not be implemented in his state and added that NPR would be updated in the way that it was done in 2010-2011.“NRC is not going to be implemented here and only NPR will be carried out the way it was done in the year 2010,” Kumar said while speaking at MANUU in Darbhanga. “It will be done on the basis of that only.”The questions introduced in new NPR form include details of parents’ birth, Aadhaar, passport number, mobile phone number, voter ID number and mother tongue. scroll
Ask Trump if extraditing 19 lakh people from Assam is possible: Chidambaram to Modi
Chennai :Congress leader P Chidambaram took a swipe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over CAA, NRC and NPR, telling him to ask visiting US President Donald Trump if it was possible to extradite as many as 19 lakh people from Assam.Addressing a meet here against CAA, ex Minister, citing BJP’s brute majority in Parliament, asked what was the guarantee that the government would not bring in an amendment, similar to CAA, to give a push to its idea of a “Hindu” country. Alleging that there was a great threat to the Constitution and the need to save it, he said countries were now asking questions over CAA.“US President Donald Trump has said that he will ask questions about the CAA even before his arrival. If 6 to 10 lakh people are going to be affected, will the visiting leader go without posing questions?” he asked.“Where to send 19 lakh people? Which country is ready to accept them? Through which mode of transport will you send them?” he asked.PTI
Mangalore Police Firing case: Karnataka HC directs State Police to withdraw endorsements
Karnataka High Court today directed the State Police to withdraw endorsements that were filed based on complaints received in the Mangaluru police firing that occurred in Dec, in the wake of protests against CAA.A Division Bench of Chief Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka and Justice Hemant Chandangoudar observed that filing endorsements instead of FIRs is beyond the powers of the police. Hence, the same had to be withdrawn.The Court further directed DM to submit an enquiry report in the matter by March 24. The Court also granted two weeks' time to the petitioners to file rejoinder.While passing its order, the High Court additionally observed that multiple FIRs cannot be filed for the same incident. Last week, the HC  had granted bail to 21 persons in Mangalore jailed for offences allegedly committed during protests against the CAA.While doing so, the Court observed that there was a deliberate attempt on the part of the Mangalore police to cover up excesses committed against anti-CAA protestors.barandbench
SIO submits petitions to MLAs against NPR
Hyderabad:Students Islamic Organisation (SIO) has submitted representations to several legislators, urging them not to embark on a NPR exercise.In a press release, Dr. Talha Fayazuddin, president, SIO, said that while the Cabinet meeting against CAA is a welcome move, NPR is the ‘back end’ of NRC, which also needs to be stopped.“Delegations of SIO Telangana have been visiting all MLAs and Cabinet Ministers and submitted memorandums persuading them to pass the resolution against the process of NPR too,” he said, adding that SIO urges other student, religious, welfare and civic organisations to send delegations to persuade the govt of Telangana to stop NPR and put a stop to confusion and apprehensions among citizens.thehindu
Don’t believe CAA spin, it's not a refugee law:experts
Bengaluru:Speaking at Bangalore International Centre (BIC) Hub’ba on Sunday, the experts warned that one critical flaw of the law is that it assumes that all non-Muslim refugees in India are automatically fleeing religious persecution. Legal experts described CAA as a “dangerous” piece of legislation masquerading as a refugee-centric law, saying it seeks to marginalise certain segments of society. “Many of the people that CAA is trying to help are economic migrants fleeing impoverishment, which many Muslims in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan would also like to do, but cannot because the framework prefers to divide refugees by religion,” said Malavika Prasad, a lawyer with expertise on CAA and the Constitution. She pointed out that the CAA’s central flaw was that it sought to allow Hindus, Christians, Jains, Parsis and Buddhists fleeing poverty in Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Pakistan to claim citizenship while offering no such option for Muslims also fleeing those countries. “What the CAA does is that it says people from these religious groups are deemed not to be illegal migrants and that is the problem,” she said. deccanherald
Karnataka Minister Wants a Law to Shoot 'Anti-Nationals' at Sight
New Delhi: 3 days after a young woman, Amulya Leona, was arrested and charged with sedition for saying ‘Pakistan Zindabad’ at a rally in Bengaluru, Karnataka agriculture minister B.C. Patel called for a law to “shoot at sight” those who spoke against India or raised pro-Pakistan slogans.“In my opinion, there is need for a law that has to be brought in India – shoot at sight law has to brought in India for those who speak ill of India or raise pro-Pakistan slogans. It is very much needed,” Patil was quoted as saying by ANI.“The Centre must promulgate a law that enables authorities to shoot those who do anything that is seen as anti-national and chant pro-Pakistan slogans,” Patil said, speaking to reporters. “These elements must be killed on the spot.”
Sri Ram Sene Leader Puts Bounty on Activist Amulya Leona, Police Fail to Take Action
Karnataka state police have been using different yardsticks to handle cases involving objectionable content generated in favour and against CAA. It took the Bengaluru police less than a few minutes to slap a case of sedition against a 19-year-old anti-CAA activist Amulya Leona Noronha and take her into custody for saying “Pakistan Zindabad” at a protest rally last week. But it has been over two days since the Sri Ram Sene, a right-wing militant group, declared a bounty of Rs 10 lakh for anyone who kills Noronha in an “encounter”. The police are still “figuring out” the appropriate action against the men who openly threatened violence. Today, district SP, C.K. Baba, told The Wire that his police had decided to file a non-cognizable complaint instead of an FIR against the accused.thewire
*TRUMP INDIA VISIT*
Anti-Muslim sentiment permeates policies of both India and US;Amnesty as Trump meets Modi
Human rights organisation Amnesty International on Monday said “anti-Muslim sentiment permeates” the policies of both US and Indian leaders and alleged that the values that the two governments now share are bigotry and hostility. A joint statement was released by Amnesty International USA and Amnesty International India ahead of US President Donald Trump’s visit to India. Trump, along with First Lady Melania Trump, arrived in Ahmedabad for a two-day trip aimed to reset ties, which have been strained by trade rows, between the world’s biggest democracies.“Anti-Muslim sentiment permeates the policies of both US and Indian leaders,” Margaret Huang, Amnesty International USA’s executive director, said in the statement. “For decades, the US-India relationship was anchored by claims of shared values of human rights and human dignity. Now, those shared values are discrimination, bigotry, and hostility towards refugees and asylum seekers.”Huang was referring to the CAA approved by Parliament and Trump’s travel ban that targets prospective immigrants from countries that have Muslim-majority populations. “The internet and political lockdown in Kashmir has lasted for months and the enactment of CAA and the crackdown on protests has shown a leadership that is lacking empathy and a willingness to engage,” said Avinash Kumar, executive director of Amnesty International India. “We call on President Trump and PM Modi to work with the international community and address our concerns in their bilateral conversations.” The organisation also referred to NRC and NPR, saying it could particularly push Muslims “towards the limbo of detention and statelessness”. NPR  is the first step towards creating an all-India NRC. As critics have noted, NRC, in tandem with CAA, could be used to render many Indian Muslims stateless since CAA excludes Muslims.Amnesty also criticised the police action to protests against CAA and detention of political leaders in Jammu and Kashmir under the Public Safety Act. The human rights organisation also raised the matter of the internet curbs in Jammu and Kashmir, which have continued for more than six months.scroll
From trade to CAA, Trump-Modi talks on key issues significant for 2020 US elections
India, US united in fighting radical Islamic terrorism: Donald Trump at Ahmedabad event
Ahmedabad:US President Donald Trump on Monday said US stood with India in the fight against "radical Islamic terrorism" and that Washington was working with Pakistan to crack down on terrorist groups operating near its borders. Trump's comments were made in Ahmedabad, the first stop on his maiden visit to India as US president.Speaking at an event at the Motera cricket stadium in Ahmedabad, Trump said, "Both countries [India and US] are united in defending citizens from the threat of radical Islamic terrorism." Trump went on to say that under him, US had managed to "destroy" te Islamic State.Trump also said that his administration was working with Pakistan to crack down on terrorism. "We are working with Pakistan to crack down on terror and working on the terror issue on the borders. We have great relations with Pakistan and with these relations we hope we will be able to reduce tensions between the countries," Trump said.They will later depart for Delhi where Trump will attend bilateral meetings with PM Modi on Tuesday. indiatoday
Trump India Visit: US working with Pakistan to crack down on terror along borders, says Trump
‘Will sign defence deal worth $3 billion tomorrow’: Trump announces in Ahmedabad
New Delhi:US President Donald Trump announced a defence deal, including for helicopters worth $3 billion, on Monday. And he chose to make the announcement at ‘Namaste Trump’ event in Ahmedabad, the grand welcome function planned by India.“I’m pleased to announce that tomorrow our representatives will sign defence deals worth over $3 billion, to sell absolute finest state-of-the-art military helicopters and other equipment to the Indian armed forces,” said Trump.“As we continue to build our defence cooperation, US looks forward to providing India with some of the best and most feared military equipment on the planet. We make the greatest weapons ever made. We make the best and we are dealing now with India,” the US President added.HT
No objection to presence of Kejriwal, Sisodia during Melania Trump's visit to Delhi govt schools, says US embassy
New Delhi: US embassy on Sunday said it did not have any objection to the presence of chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia during US First Lady Melania Trump's visit to a Delhi government school, but stressed that it was not a political event and intention was to focus on education and students.The clarification came after Delhi government sources had said on Saturday Kejriwal and Sisodia will not attend the event as their names were dropped from the guest list. Kejriwal's AAP blamed BJP-led central government for it.After the US embassy's reaction, deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia said that they respected the concerns raised by the US Embassy and the First Lady's visit is a matter of pride for his government.PTI
‘Yagya’ by Hindu Sena to bless Trump to defeat ‘radical Islam’
New Delhi;The head of a fringe outfit in India and an ardent follower of US President Donald Trump — Vishnu Gupta has, believe it or not, arranged for a “Vishwa Shanti Yagya” or a World Peace Prayer. Yagya, Hindu Sena says, is being organised on February 24, the day of the Trump’s visit, “to seek blessings from our Hindu Gods to bless Prime Minister Modi and US President Trump…”But that’s not all. Here comes the twist. The yagya is being organised so that both Modi and Trump can “join forces and fight shoulder to shoulder to free the world from Radical Islamic fanatics, who are the biggest threat to mankind and wipe off these enemies of humanity from the face of the earth”.IANS
*J&K AND S. ASIA*
J-K: In reach out to madrassa students, Army distributes stationery items
Jammu :Army on Sunday reached out to students of a madrassa (religious school) in Doda district of Jammu and Kashmir where they distributed stationery items, a defence spokesman said.“The distribution of stationery was conducted with an aim to engage students of the madrassa in educational activities to wean them away from separatist ideology and bring them in the national mainstream through education,” the spokesman said.He said the Army distributed the stationery items at Fatima-Tuz-Zuhra Madrassa at Thathri, which was welcomed by students, teachers and locals.He said two teachers and 90 students attended the function.PTI
*OTHERS*
Gujarat: 13 injured in communal clash at Khambhat, houses, shops set on fire
Vadodara :At least 13 people were injured as a clash broke out between two communities in Khambhat taluka of Gujarat’s Anand district Sunday, where communally charged mobs set afire houses, shops, and vehicles. This is the second clash between the two communities within a month.According to the police, the members of the two communities came face to face again on Sunday afternoon over their past clash on Jan.24 which had left one person dead. However, the exact reason is still under investigation.“This area has a history of communal violence. The exact reason why the clash broke out today is still under investigation. The situation has been brought under control now. We have rounded up 46 people so far. There had been stone-pelting and arson. Around 15-20 houses and shops have been set on fire but we are still assessing the damage done. No one has suffered any major injury in the case. 6 of those admitted in the hospital have been discharged as well,” said Divya Mishra, SP, Kheda who is at present in-charge of the neighbouring district of Anand. FIR is under process, he added.While Akhbarpura was the epicenter of the violent clash, sporadic incidents of stone-pelting and arson were also reported from nearby localities. At least 25 houses and shops were set on fire by the members of both the communities, police said.indianexpress
Women’s IUML moves SC against triple talaq law
Kozhikode: Indian Union Women’s League, women’s wing of IUML, has filed a petition in the Supreme Court, challenging the constitutional validity of Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019, which criminalizes triple talaq. The petition filed by Noorbeena Rasheed, national general secretary of IUWL, states that the Act violates Articles 14, 15 and 21 of the Constitution. The petition, filed through advocate Zulfiker Ali PS, argued that the Act has introduced penal legislation, specific to a class of persons based on religious identity which can cause grave public mischief, which, if unchecked, may lead to polarization and disharmony in society. The petition said that by virtue of the SC order in the Shayara Bano case, the utterance of triple talaq is without legal sanction or effect.“If the motive was to protect a Muslim wife in an unhappy marriage, no reasonable person can believe that the means to ensure it is by putting an errant husband in jail for 3 years and create a non-bailable offence for merely saying ‘TalaqTalaqTalaq’. The marriage survives, regardless of such utterance. It is difficult to imagine why the mere utterance of meaningless words should attract a 3-year sentence for the husband,” the petition said. It added that the intent behind the Act is not abolition of triple talaq but punishment of Muslim husbands.TOI
W.Bengal: Alimul Sheikh, farmer allegedly lynched in Malda after son damages neighbour’s phone
West Bengal police have booked 5 people for allegedly lynching a farmer in Malda district last week because his seven-year-old son damaged a mobile phone, HT reported. All the accused are absconding. The police said the attack occurred on Saturday when the victim, identified as Alimul Sheikh, had an argument with his neighbour Malla Bakkas over a mobile phone. Sheikh’s son and Bakkas’ grandson were playing on the device when it got damaged. Bakkas reportedly became furious and accused Sheikh’s son of breaking it. This led to an altercation between 2 families,Telegraph reported.“The kids got hold of a smartphone and while they tried to handle it, the device got damaged. Bakkas and his relatives became angry and attacked Alimul,” Sheikh’s older brother, Mohammad Wahab, said. “Around midnight [on Saturday], Bakkas along with his sons and daughters barged into Sheikh’s house and assaulted him with iron rods and lathis.”Wahab said that when he later rushed to rescue his brother, he found him lying in a pool of blood at the spot where the children had been playing. Malda SP Alok Rajoria said police had begun investigating the matter. “The accused are on the run. A search has been launched,"said.SP 
Third man accused of torturing Muslim truck driver held in Rajasthan’s Barmer
Barmer:A third man accused of brutally thrashing and beating up a Muslim man last month in Rajasthan’s Barmer district was arrested on Sunday, senior officials said.Barmer’s SP, Sharad Choudhary, confirmed the arrest of the man identified as Bharat Singh.Bharat Singh, Moti Singh, Hinglaj Dan were arrested over four days after a video of them assaulting Muslim man, who drives a truck for a living, for allegedly stealing a mobile phone went viral on social media on Feb.20.The crime was committed on January 29 but came into light after the video of the attack was shared widely.Dan, who was arrested on Saturday, and Moti Singh were produced before a court, which sent them to two days of police remand.Reports said the accused have been booked several times on charges of smuggling and under the SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act in the past. HT
Underworld Gangster Ravi Pujari Extradited From Senegal, Brought To India
New Delhi: Underworld gangster Ravi Pujari, who used to operate in Mumbai in 1990s, was brought back to India late last night after he was arrested and extradited  from the west African country of Senegal. He was flown to Bengaluru by a team of officials, including senior IPS officers from Karnataka.Pujari, who was wanted in many cases including extortion and murder in different parts of the country, including Karnataka, and been missing for over 15 years. He was wanted in close to 90 cases in Karnataka, in which 25 cases are under stringent MCOCA. Over 70 cases of extortion are registered against him in Gujarat. On Wednesday, the Supreme Court of Senegal had rejected his request challenging his extradition to India.At the time of his arrest in Senegal, he had a Burkino Faso passport with a false identity of Anthony Fernandes.ndtv
SC rejects BJP leader’s plea for sanction in Kanhaiya Kumar sedition case
The Supreme Court today dismissed a plea by BJP leader Nand Kishore Garg seeking direction to the Delhi government to sanction the prosecution of former JNU students’ union president and CPI leader Kanhaiya Kumar in 2016 JNU sedition case.“We won’t entertain such a plea. It has to be decided on case-to-case basis”, CJI Sharad Arvind Bobde said.Garg had moved the Supreme Court after the Delhi High Court declined his plea last December. He had alleged that the Delhi government was deliberately delaying granting sanction to the police to prosecute Kanhaiya Kumar.HT
Food data raises alert: Indians are consuming less pulses and milk: indianexpress
New Delhi:Is there stagnation in demand for pulses, milk and other protein-rich foods in India?National Statistical Office (NSO) withheld its household consumption expenditure survey report for 2017-18 but alternative data sources do suggest a slowdown — at least in respect of ubiquitous dal and doodh.At a global Pulses Conclave held earlier this month in Pune, the overwhelming concern expressed by participants was: Why are we not eating enough pulses?One of the presentations at the event was a detailed analysis of the estimated consumption of individual pulses — chana (chickpea),yellow peas, masur (red lentil), arhar (pigeon-pea), moong (green gram) and urad (black gram) — based on year-wise opening stocks plus domestic production and imports, and deducting exports, diversion towards seed and feed, and closing stocks.The aggregate picture that emerged was simple: Pulses consumption in India is showing signs of flattening.
Tharoor, Singhvi join the chorus: Congress seen to be adrift, time for action now
New Delhi :Disquiet is growing within the Congress over leadership’s reluctance to shed its inertia in addressing organisational challenges, mainly the election of a new party president.Lok Sabha MP Shashi Tharoor said the “perception” that the party is “adrift” is hurting it as it is driving voters towards other political alternatives, and three-time MP Abhishek Singhvi said the time for “discussion and words” is over.In Kolkata, senior leader Jairam Ramesh told PTI that a “collective submergence of individual egos and ambitions” was needed to revive the party, and suggested that “all senior Congress leaders, after a certain age, should be mentoring juniors rather than tormenting them”.indianexpress
NIA conducts searches in multiple places in Tamil Nadu
NIA are conducting searches at various places across Tamil Nadu, including Chennai.Sources told The Hindu premier agency was conducting raids on the premises of some employees of major telecom service providers in Chennai for issuing SIM cards to terror suspects. SIMs were allegedly activated with the documents of genuine customers. NIA is probing the murder of Special Sub-Inspector of Police Wilson, who was shot dead in Kanniyakumari district on January 8. In connection with the shooting, two separate cases were booked — one for murder and another for supply of SIM cards to assailants.Officials from NIA are conducting searches at a residence in Mohamed Pura in Salem today.The Hindu
Noted Islamic philosopher and scientist Al-Farabi draws India-Kazakhstan closer
New Delhi: Cultural and civilizational ties between India and Kazakhstan are hoping to get a fillip on 1150th anniversary of renowned thinker of East Abu Nasr al-Farabi.On Feb/17 on the occasion of 1150th anniversary of al-Farabi JNU hosted a Round Table I Delhi supported by Embassy of Kazakhstan in India. Kazakh Ambassador to India Yerlan Alimbayev in his welcoming remarks stressed that the anniversary of al-Farabi is included in the calendar of UNESCO's memorable dates and events for 2020 and its celebration in Delhi will give a powerful impetus to the study and understanding of the renowned scientist.The round table was attended by the delegation of Kazakh National University named after al-Farabi with a presentation on the life and works of outstanding philosopher and thinker.economictimes
*WORLD*
Malaysia's Mahathir submits resignation, 'quits' his party
Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has announced his resignation, paving the way for a possible formation of a new govt.Mahathir said in a two-line statement that he had informed the country's king of his resignation at 1pm Kuala Lumpur time (05:00 GMT) on Monday.In a new development, Mahathir has also reportedly resigned from his own party, Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, according to Reuters citing 3 sources. Mahathir's party also announced that it was quitting the ruling government coalition, Pakatan Harapan (Alliance of Hope), casting doubt on future of the partnership. Mahathir's decision follows a weekend of political wrangling, after it was reported on Sunday night that his party was planning to form a new government that would exclude his anointed successor, Anwar Ibrahim.Earlier on Monday, Mahathir and Anwar held a meeting at the prime minister's residence, before the latter held talks with the king.Emerging from his meeting with the country's king on Monday afternoon, Anwar said he was with Mahathir when he tendered his resignation. Anwar also said that Mahathir has no plans to join hands with anyone from the previous ruling coalition he defeated to try to form a new government. When asked if Mahathir was responsible for the current political turmoil, Anwar blamed “those within my party and outside using his name.””And he [Mahathir] reiterated what he had said to me earlier, he played no part in it. He made it very clear, that in no way would he work with those associated with the previous regime.”Mahathir is set to hold a meeting with the king late Monday afternoon.aljazeera
Malaysian PM Mahathir submits resignation; Anwar denounces bid to bring down govt
6 killed in Israeli air raid on Damascus: Monitor
6 people have been killed in an Israeli air attack on Damascus, a war monitor said on Monday, as Israel confirmed raids on the Syrian capital as well as on the besieged Gaza Strip. A statement from Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) armed group on Monday said two men, who were members of the group, were killed during the "Zionist bombing in Damascus," which took place late on Sunday night.Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based war monitor, later confirmed that 4 additional pro-Assad, Iran-backed fighters died in the strike. At least one of Iran-backed fighters was Syrian, while the nationalities of others remained unknown, Observatory head Rami Abdurrahman told AFP."This cowardly aggression in Damascus was a reflection of the enemy's failure to confront our fighters inside occupied Palestine," PIJ said.Syrian Observatory said the attacks were "near the Damascus international airport".aljazeera
Ready to put my name on US-Taliban peace deal: Trump
US President Donald Trump has said he would put his name on the peace deal with the Taliban if a week went by without major violence in Afghanistan.US and Taliban negotiators agreed this week to finalize the pact on Feby 29 if a seven-day cooling-off period was observed. The truce took effect on Friday night."I want to see how this period of a week works out. If it works out over the next less-than-a-week, I would put my name on it," US president told reporters outside the White House.Trump said the nonviolence period had been holding up. He said that 19 years after the US sent troops to Afghanistan it was time to go home and suggested that the Taliban were tired of fighting.ANI
Islamabad Played Facilitator's Role in US-Taliban Peace Deal:Pakistan Foreign Minister
 Taking credit for the imminent peace deal between US and Afghan Taliban, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi that his country played the role of a facilitator and was closely involved in the entire process. Qureshi also said that Pakistan has also fulfilled all its promises made to America by playing its role in the successful negotiations.US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that an agreement between US and the Taliban could come as soon as Feb. 29 in Afghanistan."The deal will be signed in the presence of Pakistan because it was impossible for the deal to come through without our efforts," the Foreign Office quoted Qureshi as saying."Pakistan has played its role in the peace process with wholeheartedness and honesty and it is now incumbent upon the Afghan government to do the same," he said.Qureshi asserted that when Pompeo came to Pakistan for his maiden visit last year, relations between the two countries were at its lowest ebb.PTI
A case of exploding mangoes and nerve gas that ‘brought down’ Zia’s plane
Lahore :In an interview with a foreign publication, former President and Army Chief General Zia-ul-Haq’s son Muhammad Ijaz-ul-Haq says the role of ex Army Chief General Mirza Aslam Beg and ex NSA General Mahmood Ali Durrani “draws suspicion” while “based on the evidence that he has collected Indian and Israeli spy agencies were also involved” in the his father’s plane crash in August 1988.According to Haq’s interview, “the plane came down due to spraying of nerve gas in the cockpit that maimed pilots. He also confirmed the presence of explosives in the mango crates, besides claiming that a projectile had also hit the plane.”Haq says he believes that Generals Beg and Durrani were somehow involved is because “some of the doctors who were working in CMH Multan informed us [Gen. Zia’s family] probably a month or two months after the incident that they received orders from higher-up not to do the autopsy of the body parts that were found after the crash. Later on some of them told us that they were transferred from Multan to farflung places, which was obviously done to to cover it up. When the autopsies were done on Brigadier General Herbert M. Wassom, who was US military attache, then why not the Pakistanis? I asked Gen. Beg directly and indirectly but he never responded. The orders to transfer the doctors to farflung places didn’t come from their immediate bosses; only the GHQ could have done it.”Haq says that Air Commodore Zaheer Zaidi carried out an investigation and those hundred pages of his personal inquiry are with him. He also talks about an air force officer Akram Awan “who was arrested by our intelligence agency for espionage and he was kept in safe custody of the agency of Pakistan without any access to the outside world. When he recorded his statement under oath to an Additional Session Judge [Magistrate] under section 164 of Pak Criminal Procedure Code, it must have been authentic. He was being investigated for helping Israelis bomb Kahuta. He was being investigated by one brigadier, one major and one colonel. When they handed the report to GHQ, it wasn’t released at the orders of Gen. Beg who said this could lead to uncertainty. Gen. Beg kept the original report with him and never released it. These 3 officers were then transferred out of the agency.” Haq says that he has gathered all this information through different sources — some directly and some indirectly.thehindu
Coronavirus: Toll in China rises to 2,952, Xi Jinping calls it nation’s ‘largest health emergency’
China’s National Health Commission on Monday reported that the novel coronavirus had claimed 150 more lives with all except one fatality reported from Hubei province, the epicentre of the outbreak, AFP reported. Monday’s toll is a sizeable increase from the 97 deaths reported on Sunday. The toll in China from the coronavirus is now 2,952.The Chinese National Health Commission also confirmed 409 new cases in the country with most of them being in Hubei. This brought the total number of confirmed cases in China to 77,150, according to The Guardian.China’s President Xi Jinping described the epidemic as the country’s “largest public health emergency” since its founding.scroll
China coronavirus outbreak: All the latest updates
Coronavirus outbreak live: Afghanistan, Bahrain report first coronavirus cases
 International concern grew over the coronavirus outbreak after sharp rises in infections in South Korea, Italy and Iran. Meanwhile, Italy raced to contain the biggest outbreak of coronavirus in Europe, sealing off the worst affected towns and banning public events in much of the north as it reported 152 cases the virus. The first case of the new coronavirus was detected in Bahrain, the state news agency said, citing the health ministry as per Reuters report.indiatoday
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Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 2:05 PM).   

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