Sunday, 15 March 2020

15 MARCH NEWS: NPR boycott call will be withdrawn, if NPR amended ‘doubtful’ citizen rule: Anti-CAA Umbrella groups /Delhi riots: 718 cases registered, 3,400 people held /Police played communal role in Delhi violence, petitioners tell HC / MP floor test: ‘All is well’, says Kamal Nath; Congress MLAs return to Bhopal from Jaipur


NEWS DIGEST, EVENING
 15 March 2020: 19 Rajjab 1441: Vol: 12, No: 156
*anti-CAA,NRC-NPR stir*
NPR boycott call will be withdrawn, if NPR amended ‘doubtful’ citizen rule: Anti-CAA Umbrella groups
New Delhi: 2 umbrella groups against the new citizenship regime on Saturday jointly demanded that the Centre amend the rules to preclude people being marked “doubtful” citizens during NPR update.At a news conference, We the People of India and the Alliance against CAA-NRC-NPR announced they would withdraw their call to boycott NPR, scheduled to begin next month, if the amendment was made.However, they underlined they would continue their movement against the new citizenship matrix, represented by CAA and NRC, which they find “discriminatory and divisive”. The demand comes 2 days after Union home minister Amit Shah said that no one would be marked “doubtful” even if they failed to provide all the information sought for the preparation of the NPR.We the People of India includes several progressive parties and NGOs such as Swaraj India, Left groups and United Against Hate. The Alliance includes Muslim groups such as the Jamaat-e-Islami Hind and Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind. “We welcome the spirit of the home minister’s statement and now seek legalisation and formalisation of the same by way of Union government amending the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules, 2003,” their resolution said.“Such an amendment may remove any reference to NPR in the above mentioned Rules of 2003. Alternatively, the government may delete Rule 3(5), 4(3), 4(4) which allow NPR to be used for identifying citizens as doubtful and their deletion from the National Register of Indian Citizens.“Govt may also suitably amend Rule 7(2) and 17 to ensure that providing information in NPR is voluntary and that no one would be penalised for failure to provide information. We believe that these amendments would give effect to the home minister’s statement on the floor of the House and set at rest the widespread apprehensions about NPR.“As soon as Union government carries out the above mentioned amendments, we would be prepared to withdraw the call for boycotting NPR. The movement against CAA and NRC and the entire discriminatory citizenship regime shall, however, continue in peaceful, non-violent and democratic manner.”Bureaucrat turned activist Harsh Mander, a signatory to the declaration, said: “Citizens are scared that the government will snatch away their citizenship. Whether their fear is real or imaginary, it does exist and the solution to their fear is the responsibility of the government. They will get rid of their fear only if the rules are amended. Only then can they believe that it cannot happen in future.”telegraphindia
Anti-CAA Protestors Vowed To Continue Boycotting NPR Unless Home Minister Give Assurance In Writing: indiatomorrow
Amit Shah must walk talk: NPR boycott call will be called off if he amends law
Protests to continue until CAA-NPR-NRC withdrawn:Shaheen Bagh protestors,
Refusing to believe Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s half-truths on the issue of NPR, women protestors and social activists have demanded that the government amend the existing law to ensure that as a result of NPR, no citizen will be marked as ‘doubtful’.It has been 91 days since the sit-in protest at Shaheen Bagh began and the women have decided that they will continue the movement until the law is revoked. “People are intelligent, and we remember what Amit Shah has said about the chronology of implementation. He is simply throwing crumbs at us. They think we are unlettered women, so we do not understand anything. But we have long experience and that is why we are out on the streets,” explained 70-year-old Noornisa, who has been at Shaheen Bagh since the beginning. “We want to know why these questions are being asked. After conducting the NPR exercise, a year later with the same data, they will enact NRC. We have no grounds to retreat now,” said Prakash Devi, another protestor at Shaheen Bagh. One of the women demonstrators, 50-year-old Meharunissa said, “If the Home Minister can pass CAA in Parliament, then he can amend the existing law in Parliament too. This is a fight for the poor of the country and for our next generation. If we don’t fight now, the next generation will also be enslaved.”nationalheraldindia
No fear of coronavirus, say Shaheen Bagh protesters
After Amit Shah’s Jibe, ‘United Against Hate’ Says ‘Proud of Our Activities’
New Delhi:In his address to the Lok Sabha during the debate over Delhi violence, Home Minister Amit Shah made a mention of the United Against Hate (UAH). He said UAH called for blocking of streets during Donald Trump’s India visit. Shah’s words implied that the group was responsible for provoking Hindutva forces to indulge in violence. “United Against Hate –name sounds so pious, but see what they talk about,” Shah had said.Before his address, BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi also made similar allegations against the group. She blamed Umar Khalid, a well-know youth leader associated with UAH, for his public statements and said, “They call themselves United Against Hate, but they themselves spread hate.” Similar allegations were made by Tejaswi Surya, another BJP MP from Bengalore.The comments by the members of ruling party led by the home minister targeting UAH is seen as a concerted attempt by the government to go after the activists in order to scuttle the country wide protests against CAA-NRC raging from the last three months.Khalid Saifi, who is a vocal member of the group, was arrested by the police on February 26 at the Khureji sit-in site.Home Minister Amit Shah’s jibe at the UAH is seen as a consequence of the efforts of the group to expose the Hindutva agenda which is rooted in hate and is exclusionist in nature.Following the utterances of the BJP leaders in Parliament, UAH released a statement that denied the allegation made against it. “We are appalled at this bogus allegation thrown at us,” the statement said. It accused the BJP of “weaving a false narrative” about Delhi violence.The statement defended the speech of Umar Khalid and said that he was talking about “Uniting India” while rulers were “diving India”.clarionindia
Tamil Nadu :Muslim leaders demand Assembly resolution against CAA, NRC,NPR
CHENNAI: Chief Secretary K. Shanmugam met Muslim leaders from the Federation of Tamil Nadu Muslim Political Parties and Organisations to discuss issues pertaining to the NPR, NRC and the CAA  at the Secretariat on Saturday. The Muslim leaders said they had presented four demands to the Chief Secretary, including one for an Assembly resolution against the NPR, NRC and CAA.Speaking after the meeting, M.H. Jawahirullah, president, Manithaneya Makkal Katchi, said: “We reiterated in our petition that the NPR is not needed to provide welfare schemes and that the Census is enough for it. The NPR is useless and was brought in only for the NRC.”He also said Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami should call an all-party meeting to discuss the issue. Jawahirullah said Federation of Tamil Nadu Muslim Political Parties and Organisations will wait a few days for the State government’s response, but will continue the agitations against CAA, NPR and NRC. But necessary precautions against COVID-19 would be taken, he added.thehindu
Take a stand against CAA and NPR: Muslim, Dalit organisations urge Telangana CM KCR
Joint Action Committee (JAC) against CAA and NRC on Saturday said that it would stage a protest in front of the Telangana Assembly, if Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao does not take a stand against the controversial law. JAC, comprising 40 Muslim and Dalit organisations, also asked KCR to cancel the process of the NPR by March 18, failing which its members would storm the Assembly. Speaking to reporters, JAC convenor Mohammed Mushtaq Malik also said that their leaders were being harassed by police. He urged CM to withdraw the cases that had been filed against those who participated in anti-CAA protests, including Million March in January.thenewsminute
AMU Students Taking Out Peaceful March Against Death of Anti-CAA Protester Tariq Stopped by Police
Aligarh: Student protesters tried to take out a candlelight march at AMU here to mourn the death of a youth who had died of gunshot injuries sustained in violent clashes here during protests over the amended citizenship act last month, but were blocked at the main gate itself, police said. 60 students including 50 unnamed persons have been booked by police at the Civil Lines police station in connection with the protests at AMU campus on Saturday night. Ten students were named for violating Section 144 of the Indian Penal Code.The protesters tried to march towards the collectorate, which is located close to AMU, to submit a memorandum to senior district officials but were thwarted from doing so by police personnel who reached the spot and blocked them at Sir Syed Crossing, the main university campus gate, according to Civil Lines Circle Officer (CO) Anil Samania.Earlier in the evening, a group of protesting students had announced that they were going to hold a candlelight march to mourn the death of Mohammad Tariq Munawwar, a youth who was injured on February 23 at Upper Kot and succumbed to his gunshot injuries late on Friday night at Jawahar Lal Nehru Medical College Hospital inside AMU, where he was being treated.The protesting students were demanding the arrest of 2 persons who were booked in the case but are still at large. CO Samania said that the main accused Vinay Varshney has already been arrested and the police were following up on the matter."The protesters were insisting on proceeding towards the collectorate and they were not ready to hand over their memorandum at Babey Sir Syed gate where senior district officials were ready to accept memorandum,"he claimed.Later, the memorandum was handed over to officials, he said.On Wednesday, police had arrested Varshney, a prominent BJP leader from the city, who was the main accused in the shooting incident that left Tariq injured.PTI
UP books 27 anti-CAA protesters under gangsters Act — a law controversial since 1986 launch
As many as 27 protesters allegedly involved in December 2019 protests against CAA in Uttar Pradesh have been booked under UP Gangsters and Anti-Social Activities (Prevention) Act 1986 by the Yogi Adityanath administration.Brought under a Congress-led government, the law has been controversial from the start.According to a 13 March press note released by police in Lucknow, one of the epicentres of the protests, protesters have been slapped with the gangsters Act because investigations had confirmed that they “conspired as a gang to commit anti-government activities… thereby causing panic among the public”.ThePrint takes a look at origin and provisions of the Act, and the sections that have been invoked against the accused.UP Gangsters and Anti-Social Activities (Prevention) Act, 1986, was brought in by then Congress government, led by chief minister Vir Bahadur Singh, in 1986. The main aim of the Act was to bring to book the 2,500 known gangsters in the state at the time. It defines a gangster as “a member or leader or organiser of a gang and includes any person who abets or assists in the activities of a gang enumerated in clause (b), whether before or after the commission of such activities or harbours any person who has indulged in such activities”.However, within 6 months, state government stopped invoking the law as certain legal loopholes came to light, including its generalised definition of gangsters and a provision that was allowing easy bail. 27 people booked under the Act have been accused of firing at police with an “intention to kill” and setting a police outpost on fire in Lucknow’s Satkhanda area. They have also been accused of damaging and looting other government offices and setting public/private vehicles on fire.ThePrint
Firozabad, which recorded one of the highest death figures during anti-CAA protests, reports tales of pain and police excess
According to police records, Firozabad district in Uttar Pradesh is among the regions which accounted for the highest number of deaths during the recent protests against CAA and NRC​. Of 24 deaths in the state, 7 were reported from this district, documents compiled by the state police show.Firozabad, which lies to the east of Agra, also witnessed some of the most violent clashes between the police and protesters. In all, Uttar Pradesh police has arrested over 1,200 people and detained at least 5,500 people in connection with the violence. The last available figures​ for Firozabad put the arrests in the district at 250.Among these is Ahmed Nabi, a 52-year-old Firozabad cancer patient who finally received chemotherapy in the first week of March. It was due on 28 Dec. Ahmed, who is suffering from stage-2 oral cancer, was arrested on 20 December when he was on the way to his crockery shop, said his younger brother Vakeel Nabi. “On 23 Dec, special court ordered Firozabad District Administration to admit him to hospital,” he said. “But the police did not act. The courts were closed from 25 Dec.to 1 Jan. They violated a court order to ensure he missed his chemotherapy that was due on 28 December,” he alleged. The police has denied this charge. When asked to comment, Firozabad SP Sachindra Patel said, “We have complied with the court order.” Vakeel said, “When he told the police about his medical condition, the police said, 'We will treat your cancer here'. I met my brother at the police station on the night of 21 Dec. He was barely conscious.”Vakeel further alleged that the police forced him to sign on a blank paper and made him hold a desi pistol to get his fingerprints on it. Patel responded by saying, "There is a lot of material (about the protests and ensuing arrests) available (in the public domain)."firstpost
Hoarding shaming: As SC refers to larger bench, UP brings a law to recover damage to property during protests
Lucknow :A day after its challenge to Allahabad High Court order directing it to take down name-and-shame hoardings, carrying photographs and details of people accused of violence during anti-CAA protests, was referred to a larger bench of the Supreme Court, UP Cabinet Friday cleared the draft Uttar Pradesh Recovery of Damage to Public and Private Property Ordinance, 2020.State Cabinet Minister Suresh Khanna said decision had been taken in view of the Supreme Court’s observations on different petitions regarding damage to public property. “An incident has been highlighted in newspapers recently. We have decided to bring an ordinance for same. UP Cabinet has unanimously cleared the Uttar Pradesh Recovery of Damage to Public and Private Property Ordinance, 2020,” he said.While hearing different petitions, the SC, Khanna said, had observed that public and private properties get damaged during political processions, illegal agitations, strikes etc, and that there was need for a strict law. He said the court had also observed that such protests should be videographed, and there ought to be a provision to compensate the loss.indianexpress
UP Government goes after families of anti-CAA-NPR-NRC protestors
Ultrasound clinics in Allahabad, renamed Prayagraj, will shut down between Monday, March 16 and Wednesday, March 18 in protest against the administration sealing the clinic of Dr Madhavi Mittal on specious grounds.Doctors in the city seem convinced that the raid and the act of sealing was done because of Dr Mittal’s activist husband taking a leading role in the anti-CAA-NPR-NRIC protests continuing at Mansoor Park for the past two months. Dr Mittal’s husband Ashish is an activist and state general secretary, All India Kisan Mazdoor Sabha (AIKMS).The clinic has been in operation in the Civil Lines area of Allahabad for the past 30 years and had never been raided before or served with any notice of any kind. But the sudden raid conducted by a team of Health department officials led by Deputy CMO and SDM Sadar, in the absence of Dr Mittal who was out of city, took the medical fraternity by surprise. No show-cause notice had been served, claimed Ashish Mittal.nationalheraldindia
Congress Workers Arrested for Putting Up 'Anti-Adityanath' Posters in Uttar Pradesh
Lucknow: On Saturday, Congress party worker Sudhanshu Bajpai and his friend Ashwani Yadav were arrested from Bajpai’s residence in Lucknow, for putting up a poster outside BJP’s city office.The poster, with large photographs of Uttar Pradesh chief minister Adityanath and deputy chief minister Keshav Prasad Maurya, lists the “criminal records” of Adityanath, Prasad and 5 other BJP leaders – Sangeet Som, Suresh Rana, Sanjeev Balyan, Sadhvi Prachi and Umesh Malik.thewire
UP: FIR against posters ‘naming & shaming’ CM, BJP leaders with criminal cases
Lucknow: Messages of support crop up on posters of anti-CAA protesters
Messages saying “I support you” were found written on hoardings with photographs of those who have been accused of vandalism during an anti-CAA protest in Lucknow and supposed to pay for the damages. The hoardings are put up around 100 metres from the site of the women’s sit-in at Ghanta Ghar against CAA and NRC in Thakurganj police station area.Next to a photograph of Rihai Manch founder Mohammad Shoaib, a message reads, “I support you and I support Mohd Shoaib advocate”. Next to a photograph of a person named Mohammad Sharif, someone wrote, “I support Sharif”. Several other people’s photographs had similar messages.indianexpress
Anti-CAA march put off on Maha CM''s assurance
Thane:A proposed long march against CAA-NRC-NPR regime from Bhiwandi in Thane district of Maharashtra to Vidhan Bhavan in Mumbai on Monday has been deferred on Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray''s assurance, its organiser said today.The march was planned by Samvidhan Bachao Sangharsh Samiti from Bhiwandi bypass to Vidhan Bhavan, a distance of around 56 kms.The leaders of the Samiti met CM and Housing Minister Jitendra Awhad today, a release said.CM told delegation that a sub-committee of the Cabinet has been set up to submit its report on CAA, NPR and NRC. PTI
Rajasthan govt considers moving SC against CAA
Jaipur:Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government in Rajasthan is contemplating a move to challenge CAA in the Supreme Court.“The state government is considering filing a petition against CAA in the Supreme Court,” sources said.The petition is likely to be filed in the SC on Monday.Gehlot has been vociferous about the issue and repeatedly attacked Central government over the controversial legislation.He has demanded its withdrawal for maintaining peace and harmony in the country.PTI
Anti CAA NRC protest in Bhopal: Iqbal Maidan Satyagrah reaches Day 74, Children give message on No-NRC, CAA & coronavirus through colours
BHOPAL: Children made paintings on Covid-19 at Iqbal Maidan at Iqbal Maidan on Saturday morning.It was part of Bhopal Shaheen Bagh painting competition, organised on 74th day of demonstration ‘Satyagrah,’ at the Maidan against NRC-CAA-NPR.More than 60 children took part in the contest with great zeal.Rimsa Rais made sketch of a human body showcasing symptoms of corona virus including reduce your risk – learn hands with soap and water or alcohol- based hand rub, cover nose and mouth while coughing and sneezing with a tissue, thoroughly cook meat and eggs.Rumana Mirza made a painting of people wearing masks to create awareness about Covid-19. She made work on paper with pencil.Besides, some children also painted works sending out message of No NRC, No NPR and No CAA. Ayusha Rasheed painted a map of India with pencil on paper and wrote – Hum Bharat Ke Lo Hai Samvidhan Bachayenge Kutchh Nahi Batayenge….’.She also wrote in her painting ‘Asahyog aandolan – Hum NPR mein sahyog nahi karenge…’.freepressjournal
Bengaluru’s Bilal Bagh shows new protest culture — one that replaces angry men with women of quiet strength
On Bengaluru’s Tannery Road, minaret of Masjid-e-Hazrath Bilal towers over everything else. Nowadays, minaret is also the wayfinder for “Bilal Bagh”, a road converted into a 24x7 protest site against CAA and NRC.For the past 30 days and counting, Muslim women are staging a continuous, peaceful, sit-in protest at Bilal Bagh. And on any given day, hundreds of others from around Bengaluru arrive here to join them.A casual observer, at first, might mistake the shamiana as the site for a boring family function, but as you approach, the speeches and songs heard inside, and the skits performed, reveal Bilal Bagh. Only women are allowed inside the shamiana, while men stand on the periphery where a photo exhibition circles them. But the stories best told in Bilal Bagh come from the Bagh’s core, where a makeshift stage is. Khatun Jannat, 19, first came to Bilal Bagh a few days before the protest's one-month anniversary. She saw women sitting cross-legged on the carpet or perched on chairs talking among themselves, or paying close attention to what was happening on the stage. Jannat also spotted a few volunteers — dressed in neon jackets over their salwar-suits, distributing packets of biscuits and tea — and walked up to them. She whispered that she wanted to recite a poem on stage. firstpost
Central government is willing to relax CAA rules, says CM Ibrahim
Hubballi: Former Union minister and Congress MLC CM Ibrahim on Saturday said that the central government had responded in the affirmative to his suggestions on tweaking CAA, NPR and NRC.Ibrahim said that Union minister of state for PMO Jitendra Singh had assured him of introducing the required amendments, which the former said, would go a long way in soothing the jangled nerves of the Muslim population in India. “I had written to PMO suggesting a few changes to CAA, and responding to the same, Singh invited us to New Delhi last week. We drew his attention to Nehru-Shoukat Ali Pact, which contained a stipulation that only minorities ought to be allowed to migrate from Pakistan to India and vice-versa,” said the former Union minister.TOI
*DELHI VIOLENCE*
Delhi riots: 718 cases registered, 3,400 people detained or arrested
New Delhi :Police have filed over 700 cases and arrested or detained 3,400 people in connection with the communal violence in northeast Delhi last month, officials said on Saturday.In total, 718 cases have been filed out of which 55 were registered under the Arms Act, police said.Of the 3,400 people detained or arrested, 60 people have been held under the Arms Act, they said.PTI
Delhi: 3 PFI members held for alleged involvement in riots get bail
A Delhi court on Friday granted bail to 3 alleged members of PFI, who were arrested for their alleged “involvement” in anti-CAA protests and the communal riots in north-east Delhi.Metropolitan Magistrate Prabh Deep Kaur granted bail to Parvez Alam, PFI Delhi unit president, Mohammad Ilyas, its State secretary and ‘active’ member Mohammad Danish noting that the offences invoked in the FIR are bailable in nature.The court has directed the 3 persons to cooperate with the police in its investigation and not to leave the country without permission of the court.“IO [investigating officer] has nowhere mentioned that any non-bailable offences has been disclosed or has come out during investigation till now,” the judge said.The judge reminded that it is a settled principle that in bailable offences, it is the duty of IO to offer bail to the accused persons at the first instance. The court directed the IO to give a written explanation with respect to his failure to offer bail to the accused persons.The court order came while hearing State’s plea for grant of police remand for the accused.thehindu
Aurangabad:29 PFI members booked for unlawful assembly, wrongful restraint
Aurangabad: The city police have booked 29 workers of PFI , who staged a ‘Jail Bharo’ agitation at Roshan Gate area on Friday. Some of them have been arrested on the charges of unlawful assembly and wrongful restraint.Authorities informed that the party workers had organised an agitation, without any permission, against Delhi police blaming them for their alleged complicity in the Delhi riots.As per the complaint lodged by police naik Shaikh Arshad, the group of PFI members gathered at Roshan Gate area which caused inconvenience to the commuters.TOI
Police played communal role in Delhi violence, petitioners tell HC
An affidavit filed in Delhi High Court in connection with a batch of petitions relating to the Delhi violence claims that "the police played a communal role in encouraging, abetting, supporting, protecting and aiding the assailants." "The victims speak in one voice: that the police played a communal role in encouraging, abetting, supporting, protecting and aiding the assailants," stated an affidavit filed on behalf of various petitioners, including Shaikh Mujtaba Farooq, through senior advocate Colin Gonsalves.The affidavit claimed, "The communal attack began with the hate speeches on February 23 by leaders of the BJP as described in the petition. The main attacks took place between February 23 and 26. During this period more than 54 persons were killed, over 600 injured, more than 1,000 houses and shops were destroyed, 19 mosques, 2 madrasas and 3 shrines were destroyed, and a large number of persons are missing. More than 1,000 families were affected."Stating about the hundreds of FIRs registered by the police in connection with the riots, the affidavit said that the FIRs have not been put up on any website as is the practice, and required by law. "This has led to a situation of deliberate opaqueness," they claimed."Hence the petitioners request at the outset that all FIRs registered by the Delhi Police be put up on the website of the Delhi Police," affidavit read.The petitioners further claimed in the document that while most of FIRs have the police as the informant, FIRs do not have the names of the accused and "very few FIRs" have been registered in the names of the victims.A division bench of the High Court presided over by Chief Justice D.N. Patel and Justice C. Harishankar had on March 12 adjourned the hearing on a batch of petitions to March 20 as the Centre had sought more time to file the affidavit.IANS
Delhi Court Orders FIR Against VHP Leader For Hate Speech in Lal Kuan Communal Violence Case
New Delhi: Tees Hazari court has ordered the registration of an FIR against VHP leader Alok Kumar for inciting violence against Muslims in Old Delhi’s Lal Kuan, nine months ago, NewsClick has reported.The court’s order came on February 23, a day before communally targeted violence began in north east Delhi, leading to the death of 53, nearly 300 injuries and immense destruction of property. Several ground reports have it that Muslims suffered significantly more losses than Hindus.One of the original petitioners who had asked that FIRs be registered against the likes of BJP leader Kapil Mishra, who is believed to have incited violence in north east Delhi through hate speeches, is activist Harsh Mander. In turn, Mander has been extraordinarily accused by Delhi Police of inciting violence himself.thewire
Hindus worried as Bangladesh witnesses ripple effects of Delhi riots:Sunday Guardian
New Delhi: Far from the Indian capital, the ripple effects of the recent Delhi riots are being felt in Bangladesh. While the situation in Delhi is now calm and no violence has been reported after 25 February, Bangladesh is witnessing protests. Recently, Delhi witnessed communal violence.In Bangladesh, On 6 March, thousands of people took to the streets to protest against Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s planned visit to the country on 17 March. PM Modi was scheduled to visit Bangladesh on 17 March to mark the 100th birth anniversary of the nation’s founding father, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. The trip has now been cancelled and though both sides have cited the coronavirus scare as the reason behind calling off the trip to Dhaka, sources say that Indian intelligence officials were not sure about the PM’s security in Dhaka.The rocky relationship between the 2 countries surfaced after Assam’s NRC was published and CAA came into existence. Recently, Speaker of Bangladesh’s Parliament cancelled her visit to India and now the country’s major opposition, BNP’s protests across the country have intensified the crisis.Protests in Bangladesh against CAA and the Delhi riots have so far left 12 people injured. Most of these injuries happened in the southern island of Hatiya, and Chittagong region.“Thousands of people gathered outside the Anderkilla Shahi Jame mosque in Chittagong city on 6 March. The protesters were raising inflammatory speeches and communal slogans. A call for revenge was also given during the protest. While the mob kept raising communal slogans, most Hindu residents of the area remained indoors fearing a 1992 like violence in the city,” Saumen Banerjee said. A large protest was also witnessed outside the medieval era Kadam Mubarak mosque.Banerjee, who belongs to Chittagong Hill Tracts area and works as a dockyard engineer, said: “Ever since Sheikh Hasina has come to power, she’s been holding back the crazy radicals all the time and people hope that this time again, she will succeed in doing same. But for now, situation is tense, at least in the city.According to Banerjee, Hindus are concentrated largely in Chittagong city and parts of the Chittagong Hill Tracts and historically, these areas have been the hubs of communal tension.
In Bangladesh, Protest Against PM Modi On Hold, Only Until He Pays A Visit
The anti-Indian protests planned during Narendra Modi’s visit to Dhaka has now been put on hold in view of the former's deferred trip to Bangladesh. But his Bangladeshi detractors claim they will be out in the streets in numbers whenever the Indian prime minister touches down in their country.“Our protests have been held back, they have not been called off,” says Kafi Ratan, member of the Bangladesh Communist Party’s presidium. “We will take to the streets in large numbers to protest whenever he comes to Dhaka,” he adds.The communists, the Islamist group Hefazat-e-Islam and sections of students had held a series of protests in Dhaka and other Bangladeshi cities this month to express displeasure with the BJP-led government in India in the wake of the Delhi riots.They had plans of holding a series of protests next week but decided to hold them back since the Indian Prime Minister’s scheduled 2-day visit to Dhaka from March 17 had been deferred because of the coronavirus outbreak.outlookindia
Press Council of India report on Delhi riots puts media & Delhi Police in the dock
The communal violence in Delhi last month covered approximately 6 square kilometres and should have been nipped in the bud by Delhi Police. But shoot-at-sight orders were not given till Feb.26, 3 days after the violence began and only after the National Security Advisor Ajit Doval visited the area.The fact-finding report by Press Council of India questions both police inaction and complicity as also the failure of the media to ask the right questions, despite reporters and photojournalists risking their lives to present reasonably accurate, first-hand accounts from the ground.nationalheraldindia
For Delhi Riot Victims, Legal Camps Offer Lone Hope for Justice
New Delhi: On hearing that a legal camp has been set up in Lane No. 5 of Chaman Park in Mustafabad area by the Citizens Collective for Peace, a group of individuals and civil society organisations, Rukhsana had immediately set off for it.A resident of Bapu Nagar, which was one of the many colonies to witness large scale arson and violence over three days beginning February 24, she was among the lucky ones who escaped with injury or loss of property. But she lost her livelihood as the families she worked for as a domestic help had to flee the area.“Now I am not getting work. I also do not have an ‘aadmi’ (husband), I am a widow. If you can do something for me, please do. I have not received any assistance from the government. My children are young. I just need ration for a few months and some clothes,” she said to The Wire as she emerged from inside the legal camp being run by “Lawyers for Detainees”.While the large number of lawyers and law students at the camp have already helped over 400 people get their FIRs registered, file police complaints and compensation forms, there is little they can do in Rukhsana’s case as no Delhi government compensation scheme covers women like her who have lost their source of livelihood in the violence.thewire
Delhi Violence: Shaheen Bagh Protesters Demand Fair Probe
New Delhi: The women of Shaheen Bagh demanded on Friday a fair probe in the communal violence in northeast Delhi and a compensation of Rs 1 crore to the victims.“There should be an inquiry about how the people came to Delhi from UP and during the violence,” a group of women at the site said at a late-night press conference. “We want a fair probe into the violence in Jaffrabad, Shiv Vihar and Maujpur.”The women said their protest against CAA, NRC, NPR and police action at Jamia Millia Islamia completed its 90 days at Shaheen Bagh on Friday.“ Home minister Amit Shah said in Rajya Sabha that no Muslim needs to be scared. We want to tell the home minister that not only Muslims, but other minorities are also scared,” a protester said.As a precautionary measure against the coronavirus pandemic, the women said the protesters were being provided with masks and hand sanitisers.“ Woman are regularly cleaning their hijabs. No need to be scared of coronavirus,” protesters added.PTI
Umar Khalid spoke of triggering riots in Delhi, claims Devendra Fadnavis
Mmubai: BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday claimed ex-JNU student leader Umar Khalid gave a anti-CAA speech in Maharashtra's Amravati last month saying violence should be triggered in Delhi during US President Donald Trump's visit Fadnavis, who said several anti-CAA protests were staged to create anarchy, also alleged that two ministers were present in this programme where Khalid spoke. Demanding that the state govt take action against Khalid, Fadnavis said, "I exposed (in House) how the state govt is not making clarification on CAA, NRC and NPR to ensure there is no peace"."The board of the programme (in which Khalid gave the speech) had photographs of two state ministers. What he (Khalid) said in his speech, happened in Delhi. But the state government is not even acting against him," Fadnavis alleged.PTI
Actions of cops during NE Delhi riots to be assessed
New Delhi :To assess the action of each police personnel deployed in Northeast Delhi when riots broke out from February 23 to 25, JCP(Eastern Range) has asked them to provide details of their place of duty and action taken by them when violence took place in their area.A letter has been sent by JCP (Eastern Range) Alok Kumar to DCPs of all districts, specialised units such as Crime Branch, Economic Offences Wing, Delhi Armed Police as well as all district police personnel. “The name of ACPs, SHOs, inspectors, who performed law and order duty in Northeast Delhi during riots, along with their place of duty, timing of duty and action taken by them during riots may be intimated by return signal. This may be treated as most urgent,” the letter states.Further, data compiled by the Delhi Police suggests that Khajuri Khas area saw the most violence, with 153 FIRs being registered — the highest in an area, among the 700-plus filed so far. More than 100 FIRs have been filed at Bhajanpura and Gokulpuri as well, indicating that these areas were particularly hit by violence.indianexpress
'Hindus Love Muslims' Poster Pinned Outside Dwarka Mosque That Was Attacked
New Delhi: A poster saying ‘Hindus love Muslims’ was pinned outside the mosque in South-West Delhi that was attacked last month on February 28 at 2 am by a few men allegedly shouting ‘Jai Shri Ram’.The poster was signed ‘Hindus of Dwarka,. The Wire had reported last month that broken glass bottles and stones were found near the mosque’s premises. While DCP Dwarka had refuted claims that the incident had taken place, when The Wire visited the mosque, the police were making arrangements to fix the windowpane that had been shattered – allegedly by a pelted stone – so that further panic could be avoided.Imran Khan, a member of the managing committee of the Shahjahanabad Society (a Muslim-majority housing complex) and Abrar Ahmed, the convener of the Masjid Society Trust suspected that 10-12 stones were pelted in quick succession st the mosque and were well-aimed.thewire
Delhi riots: Police arrest 5 more in Ankit Sharma murder case; IB staffer was killed during last month's communal violence
 Delhi Police has arrested 5 more persons in connection with IB staffer Ankit Sharma's murder during the communal violence in northeast Delhi last month, officials said.The accused have been identified as Feroz, Javed, Gulfam and Shoaib from Chand Bagh area and Anas from Mustafabad, they said. Police said they identified the accused through CCTV footage and information provided by eyewitness and local informers.PTI
"Shouting Jai Shri Ram, They Fired Bullets On Me When I Was Going To Buy Ration Rice," Says Noor-e-Ilahi Resident Rizwan
NEW DELHI:"It's them who came in large numbers and started stone-pelting. There was no provocation from our side" Said Muhammad Rizwan hailing from Noor Ilahi area near Bhajanpura in North East Delhi. Rizwan has been admitted with bullet injuries at Al Shifa Hospital, Okhla here. It was on 24th Feb, Rizwan told India Tomorrow " I went out for buying my share of ration rice. There was a large crowd on the opposite side of the road. Muslims from our streets started gathering to know what's happening. The mob then started pelting stones on us without any provocation. I could hear them shouting Jai Shri Ram" Rizwan added that then they started firing and he was hit on his abdomen. The bullets pierced through his stomach and cut his intestinal walls. He was taken to GTB Hospital where his bullets were removed. Rizwan also told a couple of others also were shot of which one succumbed to his injuries. Muhammad Usman, brother of Rizwan alleged that his brother was treated badly at GTB Hospital. "There was leakage after first operation. After the second operation, he was kept in ventilator as his condition worsened. Efforts for stitching went incomplete for the third time. He was then discharged and sent home even as his wife resisted" - Usman added. He was later taken to Al Shifa Hospital where his condition is stable. An operation to join his cut intestine is yet to be done.India Tomorrow
Delhi riots: Received 4,000 distress calls day Trump arrived, probing role of people from UP's Deoband area, police tells MHA in report
New Delhi: Delhi Police has told Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) that its control room received 4,000 distress calls from riot-hit North East Delhi district, on the day US president Donald Trump landed in Ahmedabad. These calls made by the residents were about large gathering of pro-CAA and anti-CAA groups and incidents of stone-pelting, arson, firing and clashes with police teams on the ground.Significantly, the Delhi Police has informed MHA that they are probing the role of people who came in large number from Deoband in western Uttar Pradesh, few days before the violence and allegedly stayed in Mustafa Bad and other areas of North East Delhi. The linkage between outsiders and active criminals of all police stations of the northeast Delhi districts is being investigated to unearth the larger conspiracy.A total 1,922 rioters have been identified by the police. Of these, 336 belongs to Uttar Pradesh.firstpost
‘Gated’ colonies: Delhi’s riot-scarred neighbourhoods are fortifying themselves with new barriers
Mohammed Wasil looks after Masjid Aqsa in the Chaman Park neighbourhood of North East Delhi. Until last fortnight, his duties involved paying the utility bills for the mosque, overseeing its upkeep and keeping it clean. But now another job has been added to that roster: creating fortifications to protect the place of worship from attack.Wasil matter-of-factly explained the geography of the area. “Just on that side of the road is Shiv Vihar,” he said. “All through the riots there were constant attacks from that side. Many attempts were made to burn down the mosque.”Wasil’s solution was to build a large, metal gate just outside the lane where the mosque stands. This week, he was overseeing the construction. “No one will come to save our mosque,” said Wasil. “We need to do it ourselves. That’s why we are making this gate.”Wasil isn’t the only one building barricades. Rocked by a week of communal rioting in the final week of February, several parts of North East Delhi are building metal gates, walling off their neighbourhoods to stay secure in case of any mob attacks.The metal gates stand as symbols of the fear that still courses through these narrow lanes.scroll
Bid to deport ‘anti-India’ reporter, says Prasar Bharati, MEA says no
 New Delhi :The national public broadcaster Prasar Bharati said Friday on its official Twitter handle that MEA has asked the Indian Embassy in US to look into a request “for immediate deportation” of Eric Bellman, the South Asia Deputy Bureau Chief of Wall Street Journal, for “anti-India behaviour”.The tweet by PBNS News came a week after I&B Minister Prakash Javadekar had intervened to revoke a 48-hour ban on two Malayalam news channels for their reporting on Delhi riots — for allegedly “siding” with one community and being “critical towards Delhi Police and RSS”.Later on Friday, Prasar Bharati withdrew tweet on Bellman after MEA’s official spokesperson Raveesh Kumar posted on Twitter: “A complaint was registered against @EricBellmanWSJ, @WSJIndia by a private individual on Government’s Online Grievance Redressal platform. Referring the complaint to related office is a routine matter as per standard procedure. No such decision on deportation has been taken by us.”MEA sources said the issue has been referred to Under Secretary (Consular) in MEA, and not the Indian Embassy in the US — as incorrectly reported by the public broadcaster.Earlier, on Feb. 28, public broadcaster had directed another set of tweets at Wall Street Journal, claiming that a report published in the newspaper on the death of IB staffer Ankit Sharma in the Delhi riots was wrong.indianexpress
Delhi: Cab driver claims attacked, but CCTV shows him rioting
New Delhi :A 26-year-old private cab driver, who had approached Northeast district police claiming he was a riot victim, turned out to be an accused after police found footage from a CCTV camera in Brahmpuri that purportedly showed him holding a sword and pelting stones.Police sources said Surendra Soni, a resident of Brahmpuri, was also arrested in 2013 on molestation charges.“On Feb.25, he had lodged a police complaint, alleging he was attacked by a group when he was heading home, and that he had received a gunshot injury on his left hand. An FIR of attempt to murder was then registered at New Usmanpur police station,” said a police officer.During their investigation, police found footage purportedly showing Soni carrying a sword and standing with a group of people in Brahmpuri’s gali number 13 at 2.50 am on Feb 25.Others beside him can be seen firing several rounds and pelting stones at a group, which fires back.“Soni was again questioned by police, and they showed him the footage as well. He admitted to the crime. He then claimed that people were gathering in his street, so he came out of his house to help his neighbours, and he fired and pelted stones in self-defence,” the officer said.Later, police also arrested a 22-year-old man, Nasir alias Arbaz, who was purportedly seen firing several rounds from a country-made pistol in the footage.indianexpress
*MP POLITICAL CRISIS*
MP floor test: ‘All is well’, says Kamal Nath; Congress MLAs return to Bhopal from Jaipur
New Delhi :A day ahead of the crucial floor test in Madhya Pradesh Assembly, Chief Minister Kamal Nath on Sunday maintained that his government would prove their majority in the Assembly on Monday. “All is well,” he told reporters outside Vallabh Bhawan.Several other ministers also exuded confidence that the party would survive the test. State minister and independent MLA Pradeep Jaiswal told ANI: “We have the numbers. CM is confident. Wait and watch. Kal pariksha (floor test) hogi koi zaroori nahi hai, abhi toh corona chal raha hai (It is not necessary that the floor test will be held tomorrow due to coronavirus).”Meanwhile, Congress MLAs who had been camping in Jaipur also returned to the MP capital today.“After landing at Bhopal airport, we are being taken to a hotel in buses. Instead of returning home, we will stay in Bhopal as the budget session of the assembly will start on Monday,” a Congress MLA told PTI.The party has issued a 3-line whip asking its legislators to attend the session and to vote with the government.Late on Saturday, Governor Lalji Tandon had directed the Congress government to prove its majority during the Budget session which is scheduled to begin tomorrow.The Governor said the test would take place immediately after his address in the House. The voting would take place via division and the proceedings would be recorded by an independent videographer, he said. Nath’s meeting on Sunday had triggered speculation that the government could recommend postponement of the assembly session. CM had met the Governor on Friday to ask him to investigate the circumstances into which 22 Congress MLAs were taken to Bengaluru, and their resignations letters were submitted to Speaker N P Prajapati by a former BJP minister in Bhopal.The chief minister also wrote to Union Home Minister Amit Shah, seeking his intervention to release 22 Congress MLAs kept at a resort in Bengaluru, and to allow them to attend the budget session of the Assembly.With these 6 resignations, the number of Congress members in the house has been reduced to 108. BJP has 107 members. 4 Independents, one SP, and 2 BSP members are with the Congress. There are 2 vacancies in 230-member House.indianexpress
*J&K, SOUTH ASIA & india *
Ghulam Nabi Azad meets Farooq Abdullah after his release, seeks statehood, release of other detained leaders
Srinagar: Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad on Saturday met NC president Farooq Abdullah, who was released from home detention after seven months, and demanded that all detained leaders from Jammu and Kashmir be freed and democracy restored.After a 2-hour meeting with Abdullah at the latter's residence in Gupkar area of the city here this afternoon, the Congress general secretary told reporters that for the progress of Jammu and Kashmir, its leaders should be released and "not kept in cages like a parrot".Calling for release of all other leaders and individuals, including former chief ministers Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, to restart the political process in Jammu and Kashmir, Azad said elections should be held and statehood restored to Jammu and Kashmir. He was dismissive of the recently floated Jammu Kashmir Apni Party led by former finance minister Altaf Bukhari, saying the region cannot be run through "agency created parties".Azad said he met Abdullah on behalf of his party as well as all those MPs and parties who have been raising their voice inside Parliament and outside for the release of Jammu and Kashmir leaders. "First and foremost, democracy should be restored in Jammu and Kashmir for any political process to start," Azad said.Azad, who is also a former chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, said the political process should be started soon.PTI
J&K parties must unite to bring back those detained in prisons outside state, says Farooq Abdullah
Amit Shah Assured Restoration Of Statehood: JK Apni Party Chief Altaf Bukhari
Chief of newly-formed 'JK Apni Party' Altaf Bukhari met Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday during which the minister allayed fears of demographic changes in Jammu and Kashmir and also assured for the early return of statehood. Emerging after a nearly two-hour-long meeting with the home minister, Bukhari, a businessman-turned-politician who led a delegation of the party, said various issues, including the apprehension of people of a possible demographic change, early restoration of statehood and release of political prisoners were discussed."The home minister made it clear that there was no question on the issue of any demographic change," Bukhari said.He said the home minister also reiterated that the government was committed for early restoration of statehood to Jammu and Kashmir and also said that the process of delimitation would be completed in the most scientific manner at the earliest.PTI
Will work with all sections to restore J&K’s statehood, Modi tells ex-PDP leader’s new party
A 24-member delegation of the newly formed Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party on Saturday met Prime Minister Narendra Modi, PTI reported. Modi assured the delegation that the government will work with all sections of the society to restore Jammu and Kashmir’s statehood.The delegation was headed by the party’s president Altaf Bukhari. Projecting the party as an alternative to the regional parties such as the National Conference and PDP, Bukhari sought full statehood and domicile rights to protect residents’ land and jobs.scroll
'Kashmiris Don't Want to Die Cheaply' Says Former RAW Chief on Absence of Mass Protest
New Delhi: In an interview that reveals some of the details of the secret contacts with former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah prior to the revocation of his detention under the Public Safety Act on March 13, former R&AW chief A.S. Dulat says that he visited Srinagar to meet Abdullah and that the government had cleared the visit and, additionally, national security adviser Ajit Doval was fully aware of it.Dulat – who said he visited Abdullah in Srinagar on February 12 – has known the National Conference patriarch for decades and interceded with him on behalf of earlier governments on at least two previous occasions. Speaking to Karan Thapar for The Wire, he says Farooq Abdullah will respond if the Centre reaches out and that he has always done so.In a detailed interview which will be put up on The Wire’s website at 10 pm on Saturday,  Dulat revealed details of how this secret visit came to happen and the sort of clearance and support he got from the government in Delhi as well as the Intelligence Bureau in Srinagar.thewire
Kashmiris more worried about statehood than article 370: Ex RAW Chief Dulat

Families Demand Release of Kashmiri Detainees Over Coronavirus Risks
Srinagar: The family members of Kashmiri prisoners who have been lodged in different jails across India since Article 370 was scrapped, have expressed concern in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak that has gripped the entire world.Human rights activists, advocates and families have demanded the immediate release of their kin on humanitarian grounds.“The threat of the coronavirus epidemic increases the risk to their health and safety for political prisoners, who should never have been imprisoned in the first place,” said Michael Page, deputy Middle East director at HRW.thewire
NIA court frames charges against Yasin Malik for killing of IAF personnel in 1990
Jammu:A NIA court in Jammu on Saturday charged JKLF chief Yasin Malik and six others in the killing of 4 IAF officers in Kashmir in 1990. The court said there was enough prima facie evidence to prosecute Malik in the case.The other accused included Ali Mohammad Mir, Manzoor Ahmed Sofi alias Mustafa, Javed Ahmed Mir alias Nalka, Nana ji alias Saleem, Javed Ahmed Zargar and Showkat Ahmed Bakshi. All six were charged for the attempt to kill the IAF personnel. The judge has also directed jail superintendents to produce both the accused — Yasin Malik and Showkat Ahmed Bakshi — through video conferencing on March 16. indianexpress
*ECONOMY*
Excise duty hiked on petrol, diesel by 3 per litre; govt move to mop up gains from fall in global oil prices
Excise duty on petrol and diesel was on Saturday hiked by Rs 3 per litre as the government looked to mop up gains arising from fall in international oil prices.This move is an attempt to increase government revenues at a time when tax collections have fallen amid the weakest economic growth in over six years, according to Reuters.The excise duty on the fuels was hiked by Rs 3 per litre, the government said in a gazette notification.firstpost
You are a heartless bank – ‘Nirmala Sitharaman blasts SBI chief’ in alleged leaked audio
New Delhi: A purported audio clip of Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman taking State Bank of India Chairman Rajnish Kumar to task has gone viral.Sitharaman, who has been known to lose her cool as finance minister – and as defence minister in the first term of PM Modi – can be heard calling country’s largest state-run lender “heartless” and “inefficient” in the purported audio clip.The clip was uploaded on YouTube Friday and was widely shared Saturday.The purported comments are said to have been made at a meeting between Sitharaman and bankers in the last week of February on issues faced by Assam and other Northeastern states. The meeting was attended by Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and officials of the department of financial services.The finance minister, it could be gathered from the purported conversation, was upset that 2.5 lakh bank accounts belonging to tea garden workers in Assam had become non-operational due to a lack of acceptable KYC requirements.theprint
Statement condemning Sitharaman’s attack on SBI chief withdrawn by bank association
An association of bank officers on Saturday criticised Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for allegedly rebuking State Bank of India Chairperson Rajnish Kumar on a public forum, but soon withdrew its statement. In its original statement, the All India Bank Officers’ Confederation had called Sitharaman’s attack on India’s largest bank “unsavoury”.The association’s criticism was for a purported audio clip of Sitharaman at an event last month, which has been widely shared on social media. The finance minister can be heard calling the country’s largest state-run lender “heartless” and “inefficient” as bank accounts of some 2.5 lakh tea garden workers in Assam were not functional. Scroll.in could not independently verify the authenticity of the clip.scroll
Banks Wrote Off Rs 6,60,000 Crore Worth Bad Loans Since Modi Came to Power
New Delhi: Banks operating in India have written off bad loans worth Rs 660 thousand crore since 2014, as per RBI data studied by NewsClick. The quantum of loans that were written off amounts to half of the total non-performing assets or bad loans that were recorded in the financial books of the banks.Data published by RBI also shows that as much as Rs. 237 thousand crore was written off from the financial books of the banks in financial year 2018-19 alone.The graph shown below charts the steep rise in the amount being written off, often referred by banks as technical write-offs, allowing them to clean up their books, as the banks fail to recover the loans.NewsClick
*OTHERS*
Allahabad HC Stays Varanasi Court's Order To Commence Hearing On Kashi Vishwanath Temple-Gyanvapi Mosque Land Title Dispute
In a recent order, Justice Ajay Bhanot of the Allahabad High Court stayed the decision of a trial court to proceed with the hearing of the Kashi Vishwanath Temple-Gyanvapi Mosque dispute.A trial court in Varansi on February 4, while hearing the original suit filed in 1991, relating to the long standing land title dispute between the Kashi Vishwanath Mandir Trust and the Anjuman Intazamia Masjid, ordered that it will commence hearing forthwith.The trial court observed that the stay imposed by the Allahabad High Court on proceedings of the dispute was no longer in subsistence and hence, it could proceed with the hearing.In the backdrop, the Allahabad High Court had vide order dated October 13, 1998, in case titled Anjuman Intezamiya Masajid Varanasi v. Ist Additional District Judge, Varanasi & Ors., WP No. 32565/1998 (now registered as MUA227 No. 3341/2017), imposed an interim stay on the hearing of the dispute in question. "Untill further orders by this court further proceeding pursuant to order dated 23.09.1998 in suit no. 610 of 1991 pending in the court of 2nd respondent shall remain stayed," the high court had ordered.livelaw.in
Babri Masjid demolition trial: CBI court fixes Mar 24 for questioning accused
Lucknow: A special CBI court hearing 1992 Babri Masjid demolition case in Ayodhya has fixed March 24 for examining and questioning the accused.After the Supreme Court's strict direction in July, 2019 to complete the trial in nine months time, now the special CBI court has taken up the case and the 351th witness, the then CBI joint Director and chief investigator M Narayanan recorded his statement.Though Mr Narayanan recorded his statement way back, the cross examination by the counsel of the opposite side was completed on Friday.It is to be mentioned here that Mr Narayanan, who investigated the case as chief investigator, was the last witness on befalf of the CBI in the case, which was lodged by the Ramjanambhoomi police station SHO and Ramjamanbhoomi chowki in-charge on December 6,1992.Special CBI judge( Ayodhya matter) S K Yadav will now record the statement of the 32 accused under section 313 of the CrPC from March 24.On the first day, three accused VHP leader Champat Rai Bansal, Faizabad BJP MP Lallu Singh and Prakash Sharma have been sent summons to appear before the court to record their statements.The accused in the case include former deputy prime minister LK Advani and senior BJP leaders MM Joshi, Uma Bharti, Kalyan Singh and Sadhvi Ritambhara.UNI
Cong leader Ikbal, aide sent to judicial custody in connnection with 1992 riots
Surat Judicial Magistrate First Class (JMFC) court on Saturday sent Congress party whip with Surat Municipal Corporation, Ikbal Belim, and his friend, Rahim Rana, to judicial custody after a non-bailable warrant was issued against them in a case of rioting after the demolition of Babri mosque in 1992.According to the case, after the demolition of Babri Mosque in Ayodhya, riots broke out in different parts of the country, including Rajiv Nagar in Udhna, Surat, where vehicles were torched and shops were looted and set on fire. Udhna police registered a case and named 26 accused, including Belim and Rana. All the accused were arrested and were later granted bail. However, the case recently came up in JMFC court in Surat. On Saturday, after being informed about the warrant, Belim (65) and his friend Rana (72), both residents of Limbayat area, reached the police station. Police took the duo to JMFC court of Additional Civil judge MB Rathore. They applied for a regular bail, which was rejected by the court that sent them to judicial custody at the Surat district Central jail.Defence lawyer Feroz Pathan said, “Bail applications of the accused were rejected as the sections under which the case is charged doesn’t permit trial and lower court to grant bail. We will file a bail application in sessions court next week. Some of the accused are dead and others have gone back to their native places.”indianexpress
Video clip that convicted two juveniles in Pehlu Khan lynching was not put on record in acquittal of six
Jaipur :A juvenile Justice Board in Rajasthan’s Alwar district sentenced and sent 2 teenagers convicted for April 1, 2017 lynching of Pehlu Khan to a ‘surakshit bal grah’ (special home) for three years, the maximum punishment for such cases. The board led by Principal Magistrate Sarita Dhakad had, last week, convicted the two teenagers — both minors when Khan was lynched — after finding them guilty on the basis of video evidence.“ Juvenile Justice Board sentenced the two today to spend three years each in a correction home,” Bhiwadi SP Amandeep Singh Kapoor said.The case against another minor accused is currently under trial in a juvenile court in Alwar.indianexpress
Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad launches political party
New Delhi :Bhim Army Chief Chandrashekhar Azad Sunday made his political debut by launching ‘Azad Samaj Party’. The day of the launch,  is significant as it marks 86th birth anniversary of BSP founder Kanshi Ram. After announcement of his party, Azad tweeted, “Sahab Kanshi Ram tera mission adhoora, Azad Samaj Party karegi poora (The incomplete mission of Kanshi Ram will be completed by Azad Samaj Party).”
We were told non-violence is cowardly: Dalit activist who quit RSS
In late 1980s, Bhanwar Meghwanshi, a 13-year-old from the Dalit community, started attending RSS’ shakhas in Rajasthan, without knowing much about the organisation. Over the course of around four years, Meghwanshi grew to harbour a visceral hatred for Muslims and began to take immense pride in his Hindu identity. He dedicated himself to the cause of RSS’s Hindu Rashtra, even receiving military training by the organisation. But after facing discrimination within the RSS, he realised that its vision is different for caste Hindus and Dalits.  Meghwanshi is now a journalist and an activist. His book Main Ek Karsevak Tha—I Was a Karsevak—was first published in Hindi in 2019 and its English translation, I Could Not Be Hindu: The Story of a Dalit in RSS, was published by Navayana in January this year. That month, Sushil Kumar, an independent journalist, spoke to Meghwanshi about RSS’s process of indoctrinating its cadre, its glorification of violence and its vision for a Hindu Rashtra.caravanmagazine
4 Gujarat Congress MLAs resign ahead of Rajya Sabha polls
New Delhi :Ahead of the upcoming elections to four Rajya Sabha seats in Gujarat, four Congress MLAs on Sunday have submitted their resignations to Assembly Speaker Rajendra Trivedi.Trivedi told PTI that he accepted their resignations. He said he will announce the names of the legislators in the Legislative Assembly on Monday. “Four Congress MLAs tendered their resignation to me on Saturday, and I will announce their names in the Assembly tomorrow,” he said.With the resignations, the Congress strength in the 182-member Assembly has come down to 69.indianexpress
*Coronavirus*
PM Modi proposes Covid-19 emergency fund, other measures; SAARC leaders echo sentiment
After his proposal was welcomed with open arms by India's South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) contemporaries, PM Narendra Modi on Sunday hosted a video-conference meet of leaders of all SAARC member nations. Prime Minister opened the discussion by mentioning India's efforts and action plan to limit the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19).The conference witnessed participation from Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Maldivian President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, Nepalese Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli, Bhutanese premier Lotay Tshering, Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and Special Assistant to Pakistani Prime Minister on Health Zafar Mirza.indiatoday
Coronavirus: 107 confirmed cases in India, Maharashtra, Kerala highest numbers
The number of coronavirus cases in India on Sunday rose to 107, including foreign visitors, even as the Centre and state governments boost measures to combat it. India has reported that two people have been killed after contracting the virus so far – one in Karnataka on Thursday, and the other following day in Delhi.As of Sunday afternoon, Maharashtra has reported the highest number of positive coronavirus cases at 31, followed by Kerala with 22, and Uttar Pradesh with 11 cases. 3 people each have been cured and discharged in Kerala and UP, 2 in Delhi and one in Telangana.scroll
Coronavirus: 452 Indians stranded in severely-hit Italy and Iran brought back
A total of 218 Indians, including 211 students, stranded in coronavirus-affected Italy arrived in India on Sunday, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan said. In a separate trip, 234 citizens – 131 students and 103 pilgrims – stranded in Iran were also brought back to the country, Foreign Minister S Jaishankar announced.“218 Indians including 211 students from Milan landed in Delhi,” Muraleedharan tweeted about the Indians evacuated from Italy.“All will be quarantined for 14 days. Government of India is committed to reach out to Indians in distress, wherever they are!” He further thanked Italian authorities, and Indian officials in Italy for coordinating evacuation.scroll
Iran coronavirus toll jumps, more countries tighten restrictions
Kazakhstan has announced the state of emergency in a bid to contain the coronavirus outbreak in the country. In Austria, the government banned gatherings of more than five people, as Philippines seals off Manila in the most aggressive response to pandemic yet seen in Southeast Asia.In other developments, US President Donald Trump was tested for the virus, with the result coming back negative. Meanwhile, Begona Gomez - wife of Spanish PM Pedro Sanchez - has been diagnosed with virus..aljazeera
Coronavirus: Al-Aqsa Mosque shut, Palestinians suspend prayers at mosques, churches, Israel restricts public gatherings
The Islamic authority that oversees Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem has announced that the Al-Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock will close their doors to worshippers as a precaution against the new coronavirus, adding that outdoor prayers will still be allowed at the complex that houses Islam's third holiest site."Islamic Waqf department decided to shut down the enclosed prayer places inside the blessed Aqsa mosque until further notice as a protective measure to prevent the spread of coronavirus. All prayers will be held in the open areas of Aqsa Mosque," director of Al-Aqsa mosque, Omar Kiswani, told Reuters on Sunday.On Saturday, Ministry of Awqaf and Religious Affairs ordered mosques and churches to be closed in all the governorates in the occupied Palestinian territories until further notice as part of efforts to curb the coronavirus, official Palestinian Wafa news agency reported.Mosques across occupied West Bank called through loudspeakers for Muslims to perform the regular daily prayers at home rather than at mosques, aiming to restrict gatherings of people, according to Wafa.Meanwhile, Israel's Health Ministry announced on Sunday that 200 Israelis have so far tested positive for the coronavirus.The ministry announced that as of Sunday all educational institutions, shopping centres, restaurants and places of public gathering are closed while gatherings of more than 10 people have also been banned.aljazeera
Over 6,000 Dead Globally From Coronavirus; Italy Worst Hit After China
Paris: A spike in deaths from the coronavirus in Spain has pushed the global toll past 6,000, according to an AFP tally compiled from official sources.The worldwide death toll rose to 6,036, with 159,844 infections after 105 died in Spain.While China remains the country with the most deaths with 3,199, the pandemic is now spreading more rapidly in Europe, with 1,907 deaths in the continent's worst-hit country Italy.AFP
*WORLD*
More than 4.8 million children born into war in Syria: UN
More than 4.8 million children have been born into war since Syria's brutal conflict erupted nine years ago, the UN children's agency has said, adding that thousands of others were killed or wounded in the conflict."The war in Syria marks yet another shameful milestone today," said Henrietta Fore, UNICEF executive director, as the conflict entered its tenth year."Millions of children are entering their second decade of life surrounded by war, violence, death and displacement."aljazeera
Afghan gov't delays Taliban prisoner release, endangering deal
Afghan govt has postponed its plan to release Taliban prisoners, a senior official said, a decision that could sabotage a deal signed last month between the armed group and US.Javid Faisal, a spokesman for the National Security Council, said on Saturday the releases were being delayed because more time was needed to review the list of Taliban prisoners."We are ready to start the process the way it is described in the presidential decree but we won't release anyone if there is no guarantee that they will not return to fighting," he said."Taliban have to show flexibility."aljazeera
New Zealand Honours 51 Worshippers Killed in Terror Attacks on Mosques
People in the New Zealand city of Christchurch honored the 51 worshipers who were killed in a mass shooting a year ago in small but poignant ways Sunday, after a planned national memorial event was canceled due to fears it might spread the new coronavirus.Outside Al Noor mosque, dozens of leather-clad bikers from the Tu Tangata club performed a traditional Maori haka. They were welcomed by mosque imam Gamal Fouda, who said people of all beliefs and cultures were stopping to pay their respects, and they were all united as New Zealanders.One of those who survived the shooting at the Linwood mosque was Mazharuddin Syed Ahmed, who said that marking anniversaries was not typically a Muslim tradition but they were doing it so the wider community could grieve and remember. He said the shootings had provoked an outpouring of love and compassion.AP
Building unity in New Zealand a year after Christchurch attacks
*views, Articles, FEATURES*
By challenging status quo, PM Modi has made vested interests uncomfortable: Akhilesh Mishra, indianexpress
Voices from Assam’s detention camps are a reminder of events that led to the Rohingya refugee crisis:Vidya Krishnan, Third Pole
Delhi Police hits a new low with oppressive measures to end the Shaheen Bagh Protest:Yusuf Ansari, Twocircles.net
[Interview] Anti-CAA Protestors' Posters With Address are Invitation To Mob Violence: Advocate Karuna Nundy
Politics Behind Kanhaiya Kumar Sedition Case: Have AAP, BJP Joined Hands?Preetha Nair, outlookindia
Should Anti-CAA Protests be Suspended Due to Coronavirus Threat?Syed Ubaidur Rahman, newsclick
Idea of India: Two former ambassadors skirmish on Shaheen Bagh:Saeed Naqvi
In Photos: 14 Mosques were Burnt by Hindutva Mobs in Delhi Pogrom
To all Kashmiri Hindus, where is the empathy you taught me?Tusharika Mattoo
Delhi Violence: Reality Check Punches Holes in Amit Shah’s Claims in Lok Sabha:Tarique Anwar , newsclick
‘We admire the political debate in India… Violence can be worrying… but India, with rule of law, can resolve it’:Ambassador of France to India
Backstory: Only Unbiased Journalism, Not Riot Videos, Can Bring Justice on Delhi’s Violence:Pamela Philipose, thewire
Rights Groups Lament Slow Pace of Disbursal of Compensation for Delhi Violence
 Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 9:00 PM).

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