Monday, 9 March 2020

9 MARCH NEWS: Delhi riots: Relief workers detained, questioned by police; journalists told to go back/ Police say they have filed over 700 cases, held nearly 2,400 people/HC orders UP Govt to immediately remove hoardings naming accused in anti-CAA protests, calls it 'unwarranted interference'/ ‘Republic In Peril’: 32 journalists attacked from Dec 2019 to Feb 2020 in Delhi alone, finds report

NEWS DIGEST, EVENING
 09 March 2020: 13 Rajjab 1441: Vol: 12, No: 152
*DELHI VIOLENCE*
Delhi riots: Relief workers detained, questioned by police; journalists told to go back
Delhi government officials and the police have been stopping people on Saturday and Sunday from providing relief to those affected by the worst orchestrated communal violence in north-east Delhi in decades. On Sunday, 6 students, who had reached Kabir Nagar to volunteer with the relief work, were stopped by locals and then detained by CRPF and police at Welcome Police Station near Gokulpuri. By late Sunday evening, Delhi Police had reached Jamia Nagar in search of these students. The violent Hindutva mob ran amok in Maujpur, Jaffrabad, Shiv Vihar, Mustafabad, Chand Bagh, Brijpuri, Babarpur, Karawal Nagar, Khajoori Khas and Yamuna Vihar. As a result of the violence, at least 55 people have lost their lives, 250 have been injured and more than 15,000 displaced.6Jamia Millia Islamia post graduate Malayalee students – Shumais Nazar, Mohd. Mukthar, Abdul Basith, Fazal Haq, Safvan and Basim Ameeruddin – were headed to the relief coordination office of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind at Kabir Nagar. These students were to conduct a survey in a locality in Chand Bagh to understand what the people had lost, how much losses they had made and to speak to them about the trauma they suffered.“We were headed to help with the survey for the first time. We got out of Maujpur-Babarpur metro station at 10.30 am and were walking towards Kabir Nagar. As we were in the locality for the first time, we asked a few locals to guide us. They asked us where we were from and what we were doing in the area. Since, we did not think that they were suspicious, we spoke to them. Once we reached the coordination office, they informed us about the work we had to do and asked us to head to Chand Bagh for the survey,” explained Nazar.As soon as they got out of the bylanes on to the main road, these six students were stopped by the men who had earlier questioned them and around 10 CRPF and police personnel. The police rounded them up immediately and took them to Welcome Police Station around 12.45 pm. “We told the police that we had gone there only to help with the relief work. They still took down our details but did not take away our phones. They repeatedly asked us why we were there and told us that we shouldn’t be in the area as it was dangerous. Once we were detained, we called the coordination office and they arranged for a lawyer. We were released by 4.45 pm,” said Nazar.On Saturday too, relief workers and journalists were stopped from reaching the relief camp at Eidgah in Mustafabad. Another group of volunteers from Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, who were sorting food packets at Kabir Nagar, were stopped by the Delhi Police personnel who wanted to take photographs of the relief workers.
Jamaat-e-Islami Hind initiates relief and rehabilitation work for Delhi riot victims
Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) has initiated its relief and rehabilitation work for riot victims in northeast Delhi after a series of visits to assess damage of life and property. “Jamaat will establish a temporary hospital at our control center for those who require medical attention,” said JIH National Secretary, Mohammed Ahmed. He is heading the relief initiative which is set up as a control center to coordinate its relief activities in a coordinated and phased manner in northeast Delhi. Ahmed discussed that JIH is also helping in the work of registering FIRs and legal prosecution with help from associated organizations and a team of dedicated volunteers. He said that some major activities under the programme include surveying to assess the scale of damage, helping the victims to complete the documentation required for claiming the govt-announced benefits and psychological counseling of the victims. Ahmed commended women and girls for actively leading the relief control set up. Ahmed further gave specific details of the relief work carried out by JIH in riot-hit areas as of March 6, by stating that it has supplied 2400 food-kits including – rice, sugar, cooking oil, biscuits, bournvita and chocolates in 8 camps in East Delhi, medical emergency relief and medicines worth Rs 1 lakh, baby food kits and sanitary napkins about 550 in number, mattresses and pillows about 1500 in total and free treatment to riot-affected victims at Al Shifa Hospital. Jamaat has also sent a team of professional counselors (both male and female) for extensive counseling of riot-affected patients at GTB and LNJP Hospitals. JIH is also planning to meet Imams of mosques that were vandalized during the riots.This comes after JIH President Syed Sadatullah Hussaini said on Saturday that “Delhi violence clearly indicates that it was preplanned in which lives, businesses and properties of Muslims were specifically targeted.” On asking about the Jamaat’s activities regarding CAA-NRC, he said that relief activities are also underway for protest victims and citizens excluded in the NRC.
Delhi violence: Police say they have filed over 700 cases, held nearly 2,400 people
Delhi Police has said they have filed over 700 cases and detained or arrested nearly 2,400 people in connection with the communal violence in North East Delhi last month. At least 53 people were killed and over 200 injured in the violence.The police said 2,387 people have been either detained or arrested in relation to the violence. As many as 702 cases have been filed, 49 of them under the Arms Act. The police force has also held 283 meetings with Aman Committees in violence-hit areas, in an effort to bring peace to the city.The Delhi Police have been accused of either inaction or complicity in some instances of violence, mostly in Muslim neighbourhoods.scroll
7 Including Suspended AAP Leader's Brother Arrested Over Delhi Violence
New Delhi: 7 people including the brother of suspended AAP leader Tahir Hussain was arrested Monday in separate cases filed over last month's clashes in Delhi that left 53 people dead and hundreds injured.Shah Alam, Tahir Hussain's brother, was arrested by Delhi Police Crime Branch today. 3 people have been arrested for sheltering him, sources say.ndtv
Agencies probe role of ‘external force’ in Delhi riots:TOI
New Delhi: Home ministry’s official version that the Delhi violence was “spontaneous” and MoS (Home) G Kishan Reddy’s statement that riots were orchestrated to defame India during US President Donald Trump’s visit may not be as contradictory as they might seem, according to law enforcement agencies probing the sequence of events.Police sources said this “external force” could be women’s rights group Pinjra Tod, formed in 2015 largely by Delhi University women students to protest restrictions enforced on female students in Jamia University. An officer claimed Pinjra Tod activists were present in Seelampur-Jafrabad area on Feb.22 evening and urged the anti-CAA protesters at the dharna site and other nearby areas to make their anti-CAA protest more impactful by creating a roadblock at the Jafrabad Metro station road.A Pinjra Tod member, however, denied that the organisation had prevailed upon women anti-CAA protestors to shift to Jafrabad Metro station site to block the road. “They did so out of their own volition. We are shocked how this narrative blaming us is being spread by some people, and how this has got so much traction,” the member said.TOI
Police arrest PFI member for spreading ‘false propaganda’ during anti-CAA protests
Delhi Police have arrested a member of PFI in connection with the protests against CAA in the national capital, according to ANI. “Special Cell arrested Mohd Danish for spreading false propaganda during anti-CAA protests,” the Delhi Police said in a statement, as quoted by ANI.Danish is a resident of Trilokpuri area in east Delhi, officials said. The official, who didn’t wish to be named, also revealed that PFI president of Delhi, Mohammad Parwez Ahmed has been in regular touch with AAP leader Sanjay Singh and several Congress leaders including Udit Raj.HT
Delhi violence: Man arrested for hatching conspiracy to incite communal riots
Investigators recreate crime scene where Shahrukh Pathan opened fire during Delhi riots
New Delhi:Investigators on Sunday recreated the crime scene along with accused Shahrukh Pathan at Maujpur in northeast Delhi where he had allegedly opened fire during the recent communal violence in the area, police said.The crime branch of Delhi Police, probing the murder cases registered during the riots, tried to find empty shells at the spot, officials said.A court here sent him to police remand for four days that ended on Saturday, following which the court sent him to 3 more days' police custody.PTI
Punjab: Demand for arrest of BJP's Kapil Mishra raised at all-woman protest
Ludhiana:Demand for the arrest of BJP leader Kapil Mishra was raised at the all woman protest against CAA in Malerkotla town. During the protest, which was the third in the series of rallies against CAA, NRC and NPR, demonstrators demanded that Mishra be held accountable for his alleged role in the recent Delhi violence. Ishtiyak Ahmed of Jamaat-e-Islami group said the protesters, comprising women from Malerkotla and neighbouring villages, marched from Sirhindi gate to Inquilabi road. A member of the Sangharsh Committee said PHD students from Patiala Aman Deol and Charanjeet Kaur stressed the need for women's empowerment and boycott of NPR. Sanvidhan Bachao Morcha coordinator Advocate Zarka Jaffery said the protest was jointly staged by their group and members of Istri Jagrati Manch. TOI
Delhi: Darkness brings panic in Shiv Vihar, uncertainty looms large as residents fear returning home
As the sun sets over the charred ruins of what was a bustling neighbourhood till only two weeks ago and the shadows lengthen into the night, panic escalates in northeast Delhi''s riot-scarred locality of Shiv Vihar.Call everybody. It’s time to leave, Mohammed Nafis calls out urgently to his 14-year-old nephew Saif, asking him to gather the family so they can leave their 'homes' to return to the houses of their relatives where they have found temporary refuges.He is not the only one.And now, the twilight hour brings with it mounting fear that the violence will be repeated. Residents rush to leave the area that has been their home for over a decade."We are too scared to spend the night here. One never knows what can happen, Nafis, who had a car seat cover workshop," told PTI.41-year-old and 14 other members of their family occupied a three-storey house in gully no.12 in phase 7 of Shiv Vihar until two weeks ago, when the locality fell prey to a wave of riots.Like his, many properties in the area were ransacked and looted before being set on fire.PTI
Hindu Couple Who Lost Son To Delhi Riots Refuses To Fuel Muslim Mudslinging
New Delhi:It has been 10 days since her son was killed in the communal violence in northeast Delhi in the last week of February, but Mamta Singh still cannot bear to sit in her house, which feels like it is full of 23-year-old’s memories.  On Saturday afternoon, the 49-year-old homemaker stepped out of her green-tiled house in Brijpuri and lingered near the front door, which had a fading campaign sticker of BJP’s lotus symbol along with the faces of Narendra Modi, Amit Shah and local MLA Jagdish Pradhan; a sign that said Radhe Radhe, a salutation to Hindu god Krishna; and another one that said Shubh Shubh, a prayer for good to prevail. After some hesitation, she walked to the marketplace at the end of the street and sat down in her family store, where they sell items that Hindus use for pujas. That day, said Mamta, was the first time she felt like she could think clearly since 25 February, when her son Manish Singh was shot dead during the riots. (Most media reports have identified Manish as Rahul Thakur. Rahul is the name his friends and family used for him).The first thing she wanted to know, said Mamta, was who was responsible for her son’s death. Not the person’s religion, but his identity.“Of course I don’t blame Muslims for his death,” she said, dismissing the notion as bizarre. “We don’t know who shot him. Why should I blame Muslims when I did not see what even happened or where the bullet came from? A crowd does not have a face.” The grieving mother’s response is in stark contrast to the bloodthirsty social media messages and WhatsApp forwards that have sought to squarely blame the Muslim community for the deaths of Hindus in the riots last month.huffingtonpost
CBSE Announces New Dates For Board Exams In Violence-Hit Northeast Delhi
New Delhi: CBSE will conduct special exams for the students who had missed their papers due to the violence in northeast Delhi last month. The special exam will be held from March 21 to April 14. The special exams for class 10 will be held from March 21 to March 30, and for class 12, exams will be held from March 31 to April 14. CBSE has asked the students to contact their respective schools on or before March 14.ndtv
*anti-CAA,NRC-NPR stir*
HC orders UP Govt to immediately remove hoardings naming accused in anti-CAA protests, calls it 'unwarranted interference'
Allahabad High Court on Monday directed the Lucknow administration to remove forthwith the controversial ‘name and shame’ hoardings of those arrested during protests against the CAA.“In entirety, we are having no doubt that the action of the State, which is subject matter of this public interest litigation is nothing but an unwarranted interference in privacy of people. The same hence, is in violation of Article 21 of the Constitution of India,” a Division Bench of Chief Justice Govind Mathur and Justice Ramesh Sinha said.The Bench also asked the District Magistrate of Lucknow to submit a report on the action taken by March 16.Rejecting the State's arguments against the Court taking the case suo motu, the Bench said , "where there is gross negligence on part of public authorities and government, where the law is disobeyed and the public is put to suffering and where the precious values of the constitution are subjected to injuries, a constitutional court can very well take notice of that at its own."The court further observed that the placement of personal data of selected persons "reflects colorable exercise of powers" by govt.  "Advocate General failed to satisfy us as to why the personal data of few persons have been placed on banners though in the State of Uttar Pradesh [when] there are lakhs of accused persons who are facing serious allegations pertaining to commission of crimes whose personal details have not been subjected to publicity," HC said in its 14-page order. Commenting on the legality of the hoardings, the court said ,"no law is in existence permitting the State to place the banners with personal data of the accused from whom compensation is to be charged." The accused persons are the accused from whom some compensation is to be recovered and in no manner they are fugitive, it said.In a controversial move, the police and the administration put up several hoardings in Lucknow identifying those accused of violence during the protests against the CAA in December last, triggering fears among those named. The names, photographs and residential addresses of the accused are listed in the hoardings.One of them, with 28 names, put up at the Hazratganj intersection, next to statue of B.R. Ambedkar, asks them to pay up over Rs. 64 lakh.
Will continue to highlight identity of 'rioters', UP govt on Allahabad HC order; opposition welcomes court
Uttar Pradesh government has said that it will continue to highlight the identities of the 'rioters' despite Allahabad high court order directing Lucknow administration to remove posters of those accused of vandalism during anti-CAA protests in Dec.Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath's media advisor Mrityunjay Kumar on Twitter said, "Allahabad HC has asked the government to remove posters and not drop charges [against alleged rioters], thus we will continue to fight to highlights the rioters' identity.""Mercy for rioters is not possible during Yogi raj," he added.The opposition parties in the state have welcomed the HC order."The government neither has the knowledge of right to privacy of citizens nor any respect for the constitution. The people of the state are fed up with this government. We welcome the high court's decision," SP supremo Akhilesh Yadav said.BSP supremo Mayawati too welcomed the decision. Meanwhile, Congress state president Ajay Kumar Lallu said the court's decision has "exposed" the undemocratic and anti-constitution stand of Adityanath government.indiatoday
'No Court Can Shut Its Eyes If A Public Unjust Is Happening Just Before It' : Allahabad HC On Suo Moto Action Against 'Name & Shame' Banners
UP: Move to display details of CAA protestors a ‘danger to life and liberty’, says ex IPS officer
Former Indian Police Service officer SR Darapuri said on Sunday that Uttar Pradesh government’s decision to “name and shame” anti-CAA protestors accused of inciting violence was a “danger to the life and liberty of citizens” not yet convicted by the court, NDTV reported.Darapuri welcomed the High Court’s observations.Darapuri is also among those whose photo and details have been put up on the hoardings. He told NDTV he does not know from where the state administration procured the photos. He called the action illegal.scroll
Adityanath Govt Sends Police to 'Raid' Clinic Owned by CAA Dissenter's Wife
New Delhi: Even as Uttar Pradesh govt’s decision to flash billboards containing names and pictures of those protesting against the contentious CAA is being criticised by the many, another controversy that shows its seemingly vindictive behaviour has now surfaced. Yogi Adityanath-led BJP government in India’s most populous state has been accused of raiding and shutting down an Allahabad-based ultrasound clinic owned by a doctor whose husband has been opposing CAA. Progressive Medicos and Scientists Forum (PMSF) has called UP govt’s action against the clinic an unjustified act to “teach a lesson” to the doctor’s family for expressing dissent against CAA.The clinic is owned by Madhavi Mittal, a alumna of India’s premier medical school, AIIMS, New Delhi. The police raided the clinic on Sunday when she was out of town for 3 days, and sealed it.A news report in The Telegraph quoted PMSF national convenor Harjit Singh Bhatti as saying, “We believe the sealing is a vindictive step taken by the Yogi Adityanath government to teach a lesson to her husband, Dr Ashish Mittal.”thewire
Group of Delhi doctors slam UP govt for sealing clinic owned by CAA dissenter''s wife
Anti-CAA protester dies in Lucknow, 2nd in a month
An anti-CAA protester at the Clock Tower in Lucknow has died of a cardiac arrest in a city hospital.This is the second death of a protester in the past one month.Farida, 55, had got drenched in rain on Friday and was admitted to a hospital after she fell ill. She died on Sunday.Another protester, 20-year-old Tayyaba, (a BA final student) had died under similar circumstances on February 23. She had succumbed to illness after getting soaked in the rain, said the protesters. A resident of Daliganj, Farida, was among the group of women who first started the protest in January. "She used to stay at the Clock Tower even during the night hours," said Rubina Begum, 45, another protester who knew Farida.The protesters at the Clock Tower had been staging a sit-in under the open sky after their pleas for setting up tents at the site were turned down by the administration.A delegation of the Samajwadi Party visited the homes of Farida and Tayyaba in Daliganj to express condolence. The delegation led by Juhie Singh, also gave a cheque of Rs two lakh each to the families of the deceased.Meanwhile, several social organisations gathered at the Clock Tower on Sunday evening to mark International Day for Women and hailed the unity and strength of women in the country.IANS
AMU students committee sets up 'legal helpdesk' for anti-CAA protesters
AMU Students Coordination Committee has set up a 'legal helpdesk' at the varsity's Bab-e-Syed monument to provide free legal aid to those who have been booked by the police while protesting against CAA.The students said that since many of the protesters had been booked under false charges, there was a need to provide legal aid to them.The students' committee comprises lawyers and teachers, mainly to assist the booked protesters.Talking to reporters, Imran Khan of the coordination committee said the "fascist" regime has plans to demonize their peaceful anti-CAA protests and also target Muslim activists.IANS
Shaheen Bagh women mark International Women’s Day, lend a helping hand to Delhi riot victims
“Log tut jate he ek ghar banane mein, tum taras nahin khate bastiyan jalane mein”, [People break their backs building a home, You don’t pity burning down villages. This moving couplet of noted poet Bashir Badr was emblazoned on the posters hung around the street stalls near Shaheen Bagh protest site on Sunday.The poignant verse found resonance amongst the women of Shaheen Bagh who banded together on the occasion of International Women’s Day to lend a helping hand to the victims of Delhi violence, which rendered many homeless and over 50 dead.“People have put their lifelong savings to build homes. All have been plundered in this violence; shops looted, many have lost their loved ones,” Aslima laments before she explains the purpose behind this initiative in detail.“On this Women’s Day, we want to do our bit in whatever way possible. We have set up shops here selling our handmade craft items and doing mehendi art. We will donate the money to the riot victims in Mustafabad, Jafrabad, Chand Bagh among others,” she sums up.Even as Shaheen Bagh was teeming with an assortment of activities dedicated towards the relief fund, the primary discussion was centred on the stir against the controversial CAA and NRC.The protest seemed to further embolden their spirits despite it entering 85th day today. “We are not going to get tired. We won’t take an inch back until this black law (CAA) is repealed,” Afreen said.Next to Afreen’s stall was Shahdah’s set-up where she lined up handmade colourful potteries. The bespectacled woman remained resolute when asked about the government’s unwavering stance on the CAA.“Jab tk upar wale ki marzi hogi, tb tk datte rahenge. Inshallah (Till Almighty is with us, we will remain steadfast),” she says.indianexpress
Shaheen Bagh shooter Kapil Baisala gets 'grand welcome' in videos after bail
New Delhi: Videos of Kapil Baisala, who fired shots in the air near the Shaheen Bagh protest site, are going viral on social media where people claim that after getting bail in the case he received grand welcome despite his shooting incident. The court granted bail to Baisala on Friday after hearing arguments from the lawyers appearing for him as well as police.After getting bail, his videos started going viral on social media. In a video, Kapil is seen getting out of a white-coloured car. It appears that the receptionist is a friend of Kapil. In the second video, Kapil is seen hugging his friends.millenniumpost
Punjab: At CAA protest, women firm up resolve to end injustice, inequality
Bathinda: International Women’s Day was observed at the indefinite anti-CAA protest in Mansa on Sunday.Women from poor families also held a protest during the day at Singhewala village in Muktsar. Several women assembled at the protest called ‘Mini Shaheen Bagh of Punjab’ in Mansa and announced to turn protests across the country as the second battle for independence from injustice and inequality.The protest has been themed “stop living like the dead, rebel and hit back, why should anyone else rule your space”. JNUSU former president Geeta Kumari, addressing women, said, “The revolution in the erstwhile Soviet Union was started by women. Today, women are fighting the second battle for independence and this fight will prove to be symbol of everybody’s dignity and safety of citizens. The women of Shaheen Bagh are sitting on protest to safeguard their citizenship and not made to sit there by anyone for monetary gains. It is heartening to see Shaheen Bagh come up at many places.”TOI
*Coronavirus*
Coronavirus outbreak : Two more fresh cases reported, count in India rises to 45
 The number of coronavirus cases in India rose to 45 on Monday after six fresh cases were reported from Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Karnataka, New Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, and Kerala. Case from Karnataka is yet to be confirmed by the Health Ministry.Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan Monday said the government is prepared to deal with novel coronavirus and his ministry is sending directives, including guidelines, to states in all the languages on ways to contain it. Earlier today, health minister chaired a review and coordination meeting with L-G Anil Baijal, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, mayors of the Municipal Corporations of Delhi and senior officials of various departments.In Kerala, a three-year-child, who had recently returned from Italy via Dubai, tested positive earlier in the day. Officials in Kochi said the child was admitted to Kalamassery medical college and her parents were also moved to isolation wards. Jammu and Kashmir reported its first case after a man, who had recently travelled to Iran and South Korea, tested positive for the virus.indianexpress
India to evacuate pilgrims from Iran first, in talks with Tehran to set up more screening centres
India will be evacuating its pilgrims first from Iran, followed by the Indians students stranded in the country in the backdrop of novel coronavirus outbreak. New Delhi has also set up a medical screening centre in the central Iranian city of Qom, which is the worst impacted by the new virus. The Indian government is negotiating with the Iranian regime to establish more screening centres in other cities of Iran.A source said Indian pilgrims have been prioritised first, and others will be facilitated only after pilgrims have been safely brought back to India. Meanwhile, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar met with parents of stranded Indian students in Srinagar and assured that the Indian government is doing its best to bring them back.dnaindia
Iran releases 70,000 prisoners as toll rises
The coronavirus outbreaks in China and South Korea appear to be slowing, as countries elsewhere in the world adopt drastic measures to try and stamp out the infection.Iran has temporarily released approximately 70,000 prisoners due to the coronavirus outbreak, Iranian judiciary chief Ebrahim Raisi said on Monday, according to Mizan, the news site of the judiciary.There were 49 new fatalities in Iran from COVID-19.In Italy, where some 16 million people in Lombardy and other parts of the north are now under quarantine, there were 133 deaths reported on Sunday, bringing the total to 366. More than 7,000 people in the country have been confirmed to have the virus.But the latest figures from China and South Korea suggest the virus might be slowing in northeast Asia.aljazeera
Misinformation, fake news spark India coronavirus fears: aljazeera report
Mumbai:India's battle against the coronavirus has many obstacles - large crowds, a stretched health system and inadequate infrastructure - as the number of infections rose to 43 on Monday.But beyond these, a familiar foe is rearing its head: fake news.Through its vast social media networks, a wave of inaccuracy is spreading on coronavirus, which causes an illness known as COVID-19.From offering unverified home remedies to tackle the virus, to floating fake advisories asking people to avoid foods such as ice cream and chicken, and sharing conspiracy theories, Indians' phones are being flooded with misinformation.On Saturday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was forced to appeal to citizens, asking them to not heed to rumours surrounding COVID-19.The country's stock exchange plunged to its lowest level since 2010 amid fears of the disease.The scale of the country's social media usage complicates the fight against misinformation.aljazeera
AMU Exams postponed over Coronavirus Scare, to be conducted from April 1
AMU has postponed all examinations of the distant learning courses for students in Aligarh, Kerala, Murshidabad (West Bengal), Kishangarh (Bihar) and Delhi due to fears of the novel coronavirus, that has so far infected 39 people in the country.The examinations were slated to begin from March 15. Professor Nafees Ansari, Director of the Distant Learning Centre, AMU, said that 6,000 students, who are enrolled in four degree courses -- B.Com, M.Com, Bachelor of Library Science, BSc Computer Application -- will now appear for the exams from April 1.timesnownews

India Among 14 Nations On Qatar's Travel Ban List Over Coronavirus Fears
Cairo: Qatar has temporarily barred travellers from 14 countries from March 9 as a precaution against the rapidly spreading coronavirus, the government announced on Sunday.The ban covers China, Egypt, India, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Syria and Thailand.Qatar reported three more cases of the virus on Sunday, bringing the total there to 15.Reuters
Drinking Alcohol Will Not Protect You From Coronavirus: WHO
Everyone seems to be going into a state of panic as a result of coronavirus outbreak in India. And as a fallout, people are believing just about anything and everything they are coming across on the internet. Among several pieces of information, there is one that asks people to 'drink alcohol to stay safe and kill the deadly virus', which, according to WHO is not true. Busting myths, misconceptions and misinformation about the deadly coronavirus, WHO said: "No. Spraying alcohol or chlorine all over your body will not kill viruses that have already entered your body."ndtv
Saudi closes schools, universities because of coronavirus
Schools and universities across Saudi Arabia will be closed from today to control the spread of the coronavirus, the Ministry of Education announced.All educational institutions, including public and private schools, technical and vocational training institutions are expected to be closed until further notice.Saudi Ministry of Education said “preventive and precautionary” measures were recommended by the health authorities to protect students and staff.“ Minister of Education directed that virtual schools and distance education be activated while the schools are closed to ensure that the educational process continues in an effective and quality manner,” ministry added.
Egypt: Banning Friday prayers over coronavirus is permissible
If Muslim scholars are asking the health ministry to prevent the Friday prayers over the fear of the coronavirus spread, the ban is “permissible,” the Egyptian Minister of Awqaf (Endowment), Mohamed Mokhtar Gomaa, announced on Saturday.Speaking in a conference held at Egypt’s Al-Azhar University, Gomaa said that the “overall purposes of Islamic law require the protection of the people.”“In the event of an epidemic that is considered a threat to humanity, necessary measures must be taken to protect the human beings,” he stressed.middleeastmonitor
*J&K, SOUTH ASIA & india *
‘Democratic dissent being muzzled’: Opposition leaders demand release of J&K ex-chief ministers
New Delhi :Pointing out that “democratic dissent is being muzzled by coercive administrative action”, Opposition leaders, including NCP chief Sharad Pawar and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Monday issued a joint statement demanding the release of all political detainees in Kashmir, especially three former chief ministers Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, and Mehbooba Mufti.Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, and Mehbooba Mufti have been under detention since the Centre scrapped special provisions under Article 370 in the region on August 5 last year and have been slapped with the stringent PSA.“There are growing assaults on democratic norms, fundamental rights and civic liberties of citizens. As a result, dissent is not only being stifled, but the avenues of raising critical voices are also being systematically muted,” the joint statement by Opposition leaders said.“The very validity of the Jammu & Kashmir PSA, can be challenged following the abrogation of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution as the state has now been stripped off its Special Status,” the statement further said.Besides Pawar and Mamata Banerjee, the statement was issued by JD(S) leader H D Deve Gowa, CPI(M) chief Sitaram Yechury, CPI leader D Raja, RJD’s Manoj Kumar Jha, and former BJP leaders Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie.indianexpress
'Judicial Harassment': British Solicitors' Body Calls for Release of Senior J&K Lawyer
Srinagar:The Law Society of England and Wales, a professional body representing over 180,000 solicitors in England and Wales, has written an official letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressing “grave concern” over the continued detention of J&K High Court Bar Association President Mian Abdul Qayoom for the past seven months.The 76-year-old lawyer was recently shifted to New Delhi’s Tihar Jail from the Central Jail in Agra, Uttar Pradesh, where he was lodged since August last year.“Law Society is gravely concerned about the arrest and detention of Mian Abdul Qayoom, lawyer and President of Jammu and Kashmir High Court Bar Association. The night of August 4, 2019, Qayoom was arrested under J&K PSA, together with others who were also arrested after Government of India repealed Article 370 of the Constitution of India,”the Law Society, which holds Special Consultative Status with UN Economic and Social Council since 2014, wrote in a letter addressed to the prime minister. Copies were also sent to home minister Amit Shah, CJI Sharad Arvind Bobde, and NHRC chairperson H.L. Dattu. The letter, dated March 5, is signed by Simon Davis, president of Law Society of England & Wales.As an independent professional body for solicitors in England and Wales, the Law Society aims to protect “everyone’s right to have access to justice” and also works internationally to “defend human rights at home and abroad”.thewire
84,000 vacant posts in Kashmir, but no recruitment yet
NEW DELHI:Almost 7 months after Article 370 was revoked in Jammu and Kashmir, the Union Home Ministry has informed a parliamentary standing committee that J&K administration has identified nearly 84,000 vacant government posts in the newly created Union Territory but the recruitment is yet to begin as the details are still being “scrutinised”. Home Minister Amit Shah moved two Bills in the Rajya Sabha on August 5 that read down Article 370 that had granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir and downgraded and bifurcated the State into 2 Union Territories — J&K and Ladakh. In his speech,  Shah linked Article 370 to poor economic development in the region.According to the Ministry’s reply to the parliamentary panel on February 18, as many as 76,453 vacancies are of non-gazetted and Class IV level posts. Merely, 7,552 vacancies are gazetted posts. On August 28, the then Governor Satyapal Malik said at a press conference in Srinagar that the government had identified 50,000 government jobs and the vacancies would be filled soon.thehindu
'Landlord Asked me to Leave Moment I Said I was Kashmiri'
New Delhi: Nasir Khuehami, a 24-year-old student from Bandipora in Kashmir, has travelled to and stayed in Delhi many times. However, this time when he came to rent a flat in Delhi’s Batla House, a bizarre turn of events greeted him. Nasir is preparing for competitive exams.On March 5, when Nasir went to look for an apartment, he knew enough about religious discrimination to know that he should look for a flat in a Muslim-dominated locality. However, what he had not accounted for was discrimination by fellow Muslims.As Nasir entered the landlord’s house with a few friends, the usual set of questions that landlords are likely to ask were asked to them. However, when the landlord learned that they were Kashmiri, he first was rude to them and then asked them to leave at once.“I had never expected to be treated this way in a Muslim locality. I had faced backlash even during the post Pulwama months, when I was in Uttarakhand, but yesterday when I was simply shown the door the moment the landlord heard about my Kashmiri identity, it was shocking,” says Nasir.thewire
India to Join Pakistan, Iran & Afghanistan in Fight Against Worst Locust Invasion in 3 Decades
Pakistan, India, Iran and Afghanistan will on March 11 chalk out a strategy to deal with the worst locust invasion to hit the region in nearly three decades, according to a media report on Monday.According to scientists, the recent locust outbreak along the India-Pakistan border may have been driven by the longer-than-usual monsoon rains across the region, and frequent cyclones in the Indian Ocean.The agriculture ministers of Pakistan, India, Iran and Afghanistan will connect via video-conferencing on March 11 to chalk out a strategy to deal with invasion.PTI
Mujibur Rahman’s birth centenary programme postponed; PM Modi may not visit Bangladesh
Kolkata:Bangladesh has postponed the main inaugural programme marking Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s birth centenary to be held on March 17.PM Narendra Modi was scheduled to attend the event.Kamal Abdul Naser Chowdhury, chief coordinator of the committee to implement year-long birth centenary programmes, said that the decision was taken after three cases of COVID-19 surfaced in Bangladesh.“A large gathering was expected at the National Parade Ground on March 17. But considering the situation, we have decided to postpone it,” Chowdhury, a senior bureaucrat, told The Hindu. He, however, indicated that the event was “postponed and not cancelled”.“We have a meeting in which we will decide how — and to what scale — we will mark March 17 [100th birth anniversary of Mujibur Rahman] and about the future event,” Chowdhury said.While both sides have not officially announced the cancellation of his scheduled trip on March 17, the postponement entails that Modi’s Bangladesh visit “stands cancelled for now”, said a source.“Foreign Ministry [of Bangladesh] will be able to clarify about the visit,” Chowdhury said.Last week, large-scale protests were witnessed in Dhaka against Modi’s visit.Dhaka University students’ union vice-president Nurul Haq told international press that they would demonstrate against Modi’s visit, “whenever he is in town.” “We will try to stop the visit, at any cost. We may march from university to airport or demonstrate around Indian High Commission,” he said last week.Considering the situation, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla visited the country to discuss about the Prime Minister’s visit last week. Bangladesh government will update the Indian government about “the new programme plans and schedules connected to Modi’s future visit,” said a source.thehindu
*ECONOMY*
DHFL Paid Rs 600cr Bribe to Yes Bank Founder Rana Kapoor's Family, Alleges CBI in FIR, Raids 7 Locations
New Delhi: CBI carried out searches at seven locations on Monday in connection with the Yes Bank scam pertaining to the Rs 600 crore alleged bribe to the family of its co-founder Rana Kapoor by DHFL, officials said.Teams of CBI officers are carrying out operations at the residence and official premises of the accused in Mumbai, they said.The agency has alleged that Kapoor, 62, entered into a criminal conspiracy with Kapil Wadhawan, DHFL promoter, for extending financial assistance to DHFL through Yes Bank in return for substantial undue benefits to himself and his family members through companies held by them, they said.According to CBI FIR, the scam started taking shape between April and June, 2018 when Yes Bank invested Rs 3,700 crore in short-term debentures of the scam-hit DHFL.In return, Wadhawan allegedly "paid kickback of Rs 600 crore" to Kapoor and family members in the form of loan to DoIT Urban Ventures (India) Pvt Ltd, they said.The Reserve Bank of India on Thursday placed Yes Bank under a moratorium, capping deposit withdrawals at Rs 50,000 per account for a month and superseding its board.PTI
Yes Bank crisis: Withdrawal limit may be lifted by Saturday, says administrator
New Delhi :RBI-appointed administrator Prashant Kumar said on Monday that the moratorium on Yes Bank could be lifted by Saturday, days after the RBI superseded the board of directors of the private sector lender for a period of 30 days “owing to serious deterioration in the financial position” of the bank. RBI has also capped the deposit withdrawals at Rs 50,000 per depositor.Prashant Kumar said the final approval from the Reserve Bank to the SBI-led resolution plan would result in Yes Bank coming out of the moratorium, PTI reported. He also made it clear that the lifting of the restrictions does not hinge on capital raising plan.indianexpress
Mayhem in Markets Over Global Factors as Sensex Nosedives Nearly 2,000 Points
New Delhi: India’s stock markets nosedived on Monday, with the benchmark BSE Sensex posting its biggest ever single-day fall in absolute terms by plunging up to 2,400 points before recovering to trade at 1,941 points lower than Friday’s close.Nervous investor sentiment over the economic fallout of the coronavirus and global oil politics drove both the Sensex and Nifty below their respective psychologically crucial levels of 35,000 and 10,500 during intraday trading, before recovering towards the end of the day.Having declined over 6% during the day, the Nifty closed 4.9% lower at 10,451.50 while the Sensex closed at 35,634.95, down 5.2%.A sell-off, which was primarily driven by global factors and cues, wiped off over Rs 7 lakh crore of Indian investor wealth.thewire
Oil crashes after Saudi launches price war
Tokyo:The state owned oil marketing companies (OMCs) have reduced the price of sensitive petroleum products like petrol by 24 to 27 paise a litre and diesel by 24 to 26 paise a litre across major cities as the price of international crude oil fell by most in a day since 1991 Gulf war.Brent crude futures fell by as much as $14.25, or 31.5%, to $31.02 a barrel, the most since 1991 on March 9 after Saudi Arabia started a price war with Russia by slashing its selling prices and pledging to unleash its pent-up supply onto a market reeling from falling demand due the spread of coronavirus. Petrol prices in Delhi decreased by ₹0.24 to at ₹70.59 per litre and diesel dropped by ₹0.25 at ₹63.26 per litre in Delhi, according to Indian Oil Corporation data.In Mumbai, petrol prices were cut by ₹0.27 and is now retailing for ₹76.29 per litre. Diesel prices on the other hand stand at ₹66.24 a litre after witnessing a price cut of ₹0.26 from last day’s prices. thehindu
Oil Drops 31% As OPEC Deal Collapse Sparks Price War, Global Markets Hit
*OTHERS*
 ‘Republic In Peril’: 32 journalists attacked from Dec 2019 to Feb 2020 in Delhi alone, finds report
Freedom of Press is in danger these days across the country. Recently, 2 channels were suspended for their coverage on Delhi Riots. Prior to this, several journalists were thrashed, shot at and assaulted while they were covering Delhi riots. Recently released report by Committee Against Assault on Journalists (CAAJ) documents a total of 32 cases of various types of assaults on journalists in Delhi after the anti-CAA protests began.The report titled "Republic In Peril" mentions instances from Dec.2019 to Feb.2020. CAAJ report outlines three phases of assault in Delhi.The first phase being Dec.2019 when anti-CAA protests began with Jamia Millia Islamia taking the centre stage.7 cases have been documented in the report where Journalists who went to cover Jamia were assaulted physically. These assaulted journalists were from mainstream news channels, news agencies, international media and digital platforms. The assaulters included both the mob and the police.This first phase lasted for five days from Dec.15 to Dec.20, 2019, although assaults continued nationwide for the whole month till the end of 2019. These 16 cases of nationwide assault in journalists covering anti-CAA protests were documented and released by CAAJ. “The second phase of attack lasted much longer, almost for the whole month of Jan, 2020. On Jan.5, 2020 journalists were targeted outside JNU campus, which was attacked on the same evening by a veiled mob. The number of cases reported in various media outlets and first-hand cases reported on twitter count to half a dozen. Those assaulted were also specifically targeted, stopped from coverage and directed/intimated by the mob,” read CAAJ report. This phase reached its peak on the last day of Jan, 2020 when journalists were hounded, beaten up and detained at ITO and Rajghat. The numbers included more than ten, many of them senior scribes who were there to report Satyagraha March and pay homage to Mahatma Gandhi on his death anniversary. More than half a dozen journalists were detained until dark in a local stadium. Delhi Police was solely responsible for this assault. Press Club of India released a condemnation statement on the same day, said the report.“The third phase is a dark chapter of horror in the history of Freedom of Press in Delhi that reminded many of the Emergency days. Around 18 cases were reported where journalists were not only stopped from coverage, but identified as Hindu/Muslims, ashamed publicly and beaten up by the rioting mob. There camera, equipment broken and vehicles burnt up by the mob. Many cases have gone unreported due to horror,” the report said.nationalheraldindia
Ayodhya: No Trust on Sunni Board to build masjid
Ayodhya: With Sunni Waqf Board scheduled to announce the composition of the Trust this week along with the blueprint of the mosque and Islamic Centre in lieu of Babri masjid, the Muslim community is abuzz with anxiety about the Board trying to hijack the Trust.On Thursday, Sunni Waqf Board chairman Zufar Farooqui had said, the fine print of the Indo-Islamic Culture Trust on a 5-acre plot in Dhannipur village in Ayodhya district would be discussed threadbare at a meeting post-Holi. The move follows swift rollout of Ram Mandir Trust for building the temple at janmabhoomi site.Key members of the Muslim community are of the opinion that the Trust must be independent and not under control of the Sunni Waqf Board as some members are political appointees and could be remote-controlled. Maulana Salman Nadwi said, “Trust members should not appointed randomly. Also, the government should pay compensation and bear expenses for construction of the mosque as protecting the masjid was government’s responsibility and it was demolished due its inaction. It should be free of government pressure.”Mushtaq Ahmed Siddiqui, member of Babri Masjid Action Committee and a senior lawyer in the title suit, said, “The Supreme Court had given land to Muslims against Claim No.4 and the Waqf Board has been mentioned in the operative portion. So, Sunni Waqf Board has no right to take a decision on formation of Trust.”Member of Sunni Central Waqf Board, Advocate Abdul Razzaq, said, “Waqf board is a den of corruption and if they control Trust, there will be serious irregularities. Union government must constitute the Trust for building the mosque as it did for the Ram temple.”Khaliq Ahmad Khan, member of All India Milli Council, who was also a party in Ayodhya title suit, said, “Litigants who fought a prolonged legal battle for the mosque should be made part of Trust. Also, reputed Islamic seminaries and organisations should find representation.”TOI
Mosque Located in 'Sensitive' Area in Aligarh Covered ahead of Holi to Maintain Peace
A mosque, located in a sensitive area in Aligarh, has been covered with a black tarpaulin sheet ahead of the Holi. Abhishek, SP, said that the step has been taken after discussions with the local representatives."This is a trend that is followed to maintain peace and harmony," he said.According to the police, the mosque is located in the sensitive area and all appropriate measures are being taken to ensure peaceful celebrations.Images of the mosque covered in tarpaulin and coloured cloth were shared on Twitter by ANI.NEWS18
MP govt in crisis? 16 Congress MLAs, including 6 minister, turn up in Bengaluru: indiatoday
Confusion and chaos have erupted in the Madhya Pradesh government with 16 Congress MLAs moving to Bengaluru in Karnataka, including 6 ministers in CM Kamal Nath’s cabinet. Meanwhile, Kamal Nath landed in Bhopal after reportedly meeting Congress chief Sonia Gandhi in Delhi. Senior Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia is also believed to be arriving in Bhopal.In addition to Congress MLAs, 6 BJP MLAs of Madhya Pradesh Assembly have also reached Bengaluru from Bhopal. While sources close to CM Kamal Nath claim that his government is safe and the party is in touch with its MLAs, developments pouring in from Bhopal, Bengaluru and New Delhi suggest otherwise. Meanwhile, an emergency meeting has been called at CM Kamal Nath’s official residence in Bhopal. Among others who will be present at the meeting will be former CM Digvijay Singh, Congress MLAs and state ministers.indiatoday
Fresh Headache for Kamal Nath in MP Poaching Drama as 18 Scindia Camp MLAs Whisked Away to Bengaluru
SCs, STs student enrolment in Ph.D. programmes remains low in IITs
Enrolment of students from marginalised communities, mainly the Scheduled Castes (SC) and the Scheduled Tribes (ST), was abysmally low in Ph.D. programmes in IITs from 2015 to 2019, data presented in Rajya Sabha on Friday showed.Of the 25,007 Ph.D. scholars admitted in the 23 IITs over the five-year period, only 9.1% were from the SC communities and 2.1% from STs. This is lower than the 15% seats reserved for the former and 7.5% for the latter.Those from OBCs made up 23.2%, which is also lower than the reservation-mandated 27%. Nearly two-thirds of the admissions (65.6%) went to general category students.The data was submitted by HRD Ministry in response to a question raised by Elamaram Karim and K. Somaprasad, CPIM MPs from Kerala.Though the total enrolment in Ph.D. programmes went up by 20% during the period, this increase did not result in a corresponding rise in the number of students from the two communities.While Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Admission) Act, 2006 seems to have helped those from the OBCs marginally, the enrolment from the Scheduled communities remained low.thehindu
Ahead of March 20 hanging, Nirbhaya case convict Vinay Sharma files fresh mercy plea
New Delhi:Nirbhaya case convict Vinay Sharma has filed a fresh mercy petition before Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal, seeking commutation of his death penalty to life imprisonment.Vinay Kumar Sharma, along with Mukesh Kumar Singh, Pawan Gupta and Akshay, has been sentenced to death for brutally raping and killing a medical student in Delhi on December 16, 2012.Another convict, minor, was sent to a correctional centre and has been released after he had served his sentence. The sixth accused hanged himself to death during the trial.India Today
NSUI defeats ABVP, wins 6 out of 8 seats in Gujarat University students elections
NSUI , the students’ wing of Congress has won 6 seats out of 8 seats in Gujarat University Senate Elections.Reacting on their victory, NSUI tweeted, “Students of PM Modi's hometown rejected BJP's dividing policies & chosen the ideology of united India. NSUI won 6 out of 8 seats in Gujarat University Senate Elections.”Varsity senate and welfare elections was held on Sunday after a gap of 4 years. Gujarat College, RH Patel, R J Tibrewal, HK Arts and Rashtrabhasha College had participated in election. 2218 voters exercised their votes out of the total 3,279 votersnationalheraldindia
*WORLD*
Saudi crackdown widens amid reports of further arrests of royals
A roundup of royals and aides has widened in Saudi Arabia, according to several reports, in what is believed to be the latest crackdown by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), the kingdom's de facto ruler, against potential challengers to his power.On Saturday, a day after it was reported two senior members of the royal family were detained over an alleged coup plot, US media outlets said Prince Nayef bin Ahmed, a former army head of intelligence, was also among those being held.Separately, Wall Street Journal reported the sweep broadened to include dozens of interior ministry officials, senior army officers and others suspected of supporting a coup attempt.It came a day after the Journal cited sources familiar with the matter as saying masked guards with the royal court on Friday arrested Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz, a younger brother of King Salman, and Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, the king's nephew and a former crown prince. The guards  also detained a brother of Mohammed bin Nayef."There are some kinds of rumours and innuendos that there's turmoil within the family in the form of criticism, but that doesn't justify being arrested as criminals, with masked security forces coming to their rooms and yanking them out of their private residences," Khalil Jahshan, executive director of Arab Center in Washington, DC, told Al Jazeera.The arrests of the king's younger and beloved brother Prince Ahmed and the king's nephew and former counterterrorism czar Prince Mohammed came after what one person in Saudi with knowledge of the situation described as an accumulation of behaviour that was provocative to leadership.The source added the arrests sent a message to anyone in the royal family feeling disenfranchised:Stop grumbling and toe the line, because if Prince Ahmed can be arrested, any prince can and will be.The detentions also raised speculation about the health of 84-year-old King Salman and whether MBS's succession to the throne was imminent, but on Sunday the official Saudi Press Agency released images of king presiding over the swearing-in ceremony of newly appointed Saudi ambassadors to Ukraine and Uruguay.Middle East Eye quoted sources as saying on Sunday the arrests were meant to ease the transition of power so Prince Mohammed can become king ahead of Nov.G20 meeting, which will be held in the Saudi capital, Riyadh.The sources also said MBS is concerned US President Donald Trump may not be re-elected with all Democratic candidates being critics of the crown prince. Both Prince Ahmed and Mohammed bin Nayef were seen as possible rivals for the throne when King Salman dies, with reports suggesting they now face long-term imprisonment.aljazeera
King Salman's youngest brother, Ahmed bin Abdul Aziz
Reuters: King Salman approved arrest of senior royals
Saudi’s King Salman approved the arrests of 3 senior royals over the weekend, local sources told Reuters.On Friday, his son, Mohammed Bin Salman, detained the king’s younger brother, and Prince Mohammed Bin Nayef, the king’s nephew and his half-brother Nawaf. 3 of the sources, including a regional source, said Mohammed and Nawaf Bin Nayef were picked up at a private desert camp on Friday. 2 sources said Ahmed was taken from his home. Crown Prince Mohammed “accused them of conducting contacts with foreign powers, including the Americans and others, to carry out a coup d’etat,” the regional source said.“With these arrests, MbS consolidated his full grip on power. It’s over with this purge,” the source added, indicating that no rivals remain to challenge his succession to the throne.Another source said the princes were accused of “treason”. A third source said they had been discussing a coup with the support of powerful tribes but had not reached advanced stages.middleeastmonitor
Sudan PM Abdalla Hamdok survives assassination attempt
Sudan's Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok has survived an assassination attempt after a blast near his convoy in the capital, Khartoum.Hamdok wrote on Twitter he was "safe and in good shape" following Monday's explosion."What happened will not stop the path of change, it will be nothing but an additional push in the strong waves of the revolution," added the veteran economist, who became prime minister in August, months after a pro-democracy movement forced the army to remove longtime President Bashar al-Bashir. Hamdok also shared a photo of himself smiling and seated at his desk, while a TV behind him showed news coverage reporting he had survived.aljazeera
Abdullah inaugurates self as Afghanistan president as Ashraf Ghani swears-in as president for second term
Afghanistan's rival leaders were each sworn in as president in separate ceremonies on Monday, throwing plans for negotiations with Taliban into chaos and creating a dilemma for US as it figures out how to move its peace deal with the Taliban forward.President Ashraf Ghani, who was declared the winner of last September's election, and his rival Abdullah Abdullah, who charged fraud in the vote along with the elections complaints commission, have refused to settle their differences.2 ceremonies were held at the same time, Ghani’s in the presidential palace and Abdullah’s next door in Sapedar Palace, both packed with each rival’s supporters. Even as Ghani was winding up his thank you speech, rocket fire could be heard. The rockets landed near the presidential palace, rattling some of those attending even as Ghani urged them to stay. The perpetrators of the fire were not immediately known, but the scene hiked worries that heightening split in Afghanistan's leadership may lead to violence, either internally or with Taliban insurgents.In a sign of international support for Ghani, his ceremony aired on state TV was attended by Washington's peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad, Gen. Austin S. Miller, head of US forces in Afghanistan, as well as a number of foreign dignitaries including US Embassy’s charge d’affaires and Tadamichi Yamamoto, UN Secretary General's personal representative to Afghanistan.At Abdullah’s inauguration, aired on private Tolo TV, among those present were so-called "jihadi' commanders, who were among those who allied with US-led coalition to topple the Taliban in 2001. Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahed, in response to questions from AP, said late Sunday that the Taliban were still committed to the deal, but said the dueling presidential inaugurations are not good for the Afghan nation."AP
Turkey:Erdogan's close ally Ali Babacan applies to launch new political party
A former close ally of Turkish Recep Tayyip Erdogan has formally begun the process to launch a political party, saying Turkey needed a "fresh start" and calling for reforms to strengthen the rule of law and democracy.In a long-awaited move, Ali Babacan's supporters on Monday submitted an official request to the interior ministry to establish the new party, whose name will be confirmed at a launch event on Wednesday.Babacan, 52-year-old ex deputy prime minister and founding member of Erdogan's AK Party that ruled Turkey since 2002, announced last July he was resigning from the AK Party over "deep differences" about its direction.
Erdogan announces death of 59 Turkish soldiers during last month in Idlib
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday that during the last month, 59 Turkish soldiers had been killed in Idlib, northwestern Syria, but he stressed that his country’s forces had neutralized, in response, 3400 soldiers of the Syrian regime’s army.Erdogan added in a speech he delivered in Antakya that “the Syrian regime’s direction of all its forces towards Idlib at a time when one-third of its territories is under occupation by YPG (Kurdish People’s Protection Units, which Ankara considers a terrorist organization) reveals other goals and objectives.”MEMO
New settler-only road will allow Israel to annex West Bank settlement
Israeli Defence Minister Naftali Bennett today approved a project for a new road for Palestinians that would allow Israel to annex Ma’aleh Adumim bloc in E1 zone of the occupied West Bank.The road, which would connect the village of Azzim, near Ma’aleh Adumim, with the villages of Anata, Hizma and Al-Ram, has been termed the “sovereignty road” by Bennett.The defence minister explained that the road would be separate from those used by vehicles with Israeli licence plates and would allow Palestinian traffic to bypass the Ma’aleh Adumim bloc, effectively annexing the area.Bennett called the move the application of “sovereignty in deeds not words”.MEMO
*views, Articles, FEATURES*
  • Reading the criticism from Iran:Shubhajit Roy , indian express
  • I Visited Nine Broken Mosques and Then I Gave Up:Ajaz Ashraf
  • Meet 10 women who are spearheading movement against CAA-NRC in India:Nazish Hussain, Musheera Ashraf, Twocircles.net
  • The defensive turn in India’s foreign policy, writes Vivek Katju: HT , former diplomat
  • Every person on Yogi Adityanath’s UP posters is now vulnerable — just like Gauri Lankesh was:ZAINAB SIKANDER
  • Meet Badlu Khan, a Symbol of the Syncretic India the Hindu Right Wants to Erase: thewire
  • Delhi Riots: Now, Only One Community Feels Safe Around Security Forces:Apoorvanand, thewire
  • We Need a Campaign to Demand the Planning Commission's Revival:Bharat Dogra, thewire
  • Has SC Limited Centre's 'Misuse' of FCRA By Reading Down Rules?The Wire Analysis
  • Time to Reach Out to Your Muslim Friends is Now:Puja Bhattacharjee, thewire
  • Dear AAP, here’s why you cannot be neutral on a moving train: Avinash Kumar and Anup Agarwal
  • India wants PM’s view on Delhi riots, collapse of Yes Bank and not on the much-publicised Coronavirus:Soroor Ahmed
  • The greatest movement since Independence but what’s Shaheen Bagh’s future?Saeed Naqvi
  Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 7:50 PM).   

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