07 October 2020

07 OCT. NEWS: Malayalam journalist, 3 others arrested near Hathras, booked under sedition law. Shaheen Bagh case: Public spaces cannot be occupied indefinitely, says SC. Modi Govt Criticised By EU Rights Body Over Amnesty Closure, Foreign Media Calls It 'Grim Sign'






Malayalam journalist, 3 others arrested near Hathras, booked under sedition law

LUCKNOW:Malayalam journalist Siddique Kappan and three others arrested by Uttar Pradesh police on their way to Hathras have been booked under UAPA  and sedition, according to an FIR registered in Mathura on Wednesday. The four were produced before a local court, which sent them in judicial remand. “Further action will be taken after collection of evidence in the investigation”, said Gaurav Grover, SSP, Mathura.The four were taken into custody at a toll plaza in Mathura on Monday when they were travelling in a car from Delhi to Hathras, said police. The car was stopped after police found their activities “suspicious”, following which they were taken into custody, added the Mathura police.Apart from Mr. Kappan, a journalist working with Malayalam portals based in Delhi, the other three were identified as Ateeq-ur-Rehman of Muzaffarnagar, Masood Ahmed of Bahraich and Alam of Rampur. In FIR, sub-inspector Prabal Singh accused the four of carrying pamphlets reading ‘Justice for Hathras Victim’ and moving towards the district to disrupt peace as part of a “big conspiracy”.The FIR alleged that they, along with unidentified others, were linked to a crime involving the creation of an Internet platform and website named ‘justiceforhathras’ with the motive of gathering foreign funds to trigger caste riots.PFI said the attempt to link it to a conspiracy to incite caste or communal violence “is completely baseless and ridiculous”.In a fresh statement, it said, “The new rounds of allegation against Popular Front are nothing but an attempt by the Uttar Pradesh government to divert the attention away from its failure to handle the Hathras rape case”.


UP Govt Extends Deadline for SIT Probing Hathras Case

Lucknow: UP government has given an additional ten days to the three-member SIT investigating the alleged gang rape and killing of a 19-year-old Dalit woman in Hathras as the “probe is not complete”, a senior official said Wednesday. The special investigation team, constituted on Sept.30, 2020, and led by Home Secretary Bhagwan Swarup, was initially given seven days to submit its report.PTI


Narrative In 'Horrific' Hathras Incident Begins To Change As BJP Leaders Support Accused

As days roll by, the narrative in the 'horrific' Hathras incident has started changing and accused are now getting increasing support from BJP leaders.The revelation of call detail records (CDR) of victim's family that show that they had spoken 104 times in five months to the main accused, Sandeep Singh, has given a new angle the case.Police sources said that the CDR proves that both the families were on good terms. Call records show that 62 calls outgoing and 42 incoming calls totalling 104 -- were made between the two phone numbers.According to the police, the call records show that the victim and the main accused were in touch. The girl's brother admits that the number belongs to him but vehemently denies having spoken to any member of the accused family. Upper caste panchayats are now being held in several villages around the Bulghari village where the incident took place and the local Thakurs and Brahmins are unanimously demanding the release of the four accused. The government affidavit submitted in the Supreme Court on Tuesday which rules out rape, has further strengthened the campaign in favour of the accused.IANS


 Shaheen Bagh case: Public spaces cannot be occupied indefinitely, says SC

Disposing a clutch of petitions in connection with the Shaheen Bagh sit-in protest, the Supreme Court on Wednesday said that public places cannot be occupied indefinitely and protests must be allowed only in designated areas. The apex court observed it is the duty of the administration to remove such road blockades. Unfortunately no action by administration and hence court’s intervention in the matter, it said. A bench comprising Justices SK Kaul, Krishna Murari and Hrishikesh Roy said: “Public places cannot be occupied indefinitely. Dissent and democracy go hand in hand but protests must be carried out in designated area… Such kind of occupation of public place for protests is not acceptable.” On September 21, the bench reserved its verdict after observing that the right to protest has to be balanced with the right of the people to use a public road. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said that though Right to Protest is a fundemental right, it is subject to reasonable restrictions.


Delhi Riots: Chargesheet Links Umar Khalid, Khalid Saifi To 'Holy War' On India, Families Say 'Beyond Ridiculous'

Former JNU student Umar Khalid speaks at a protest against Citizenship Amendment Act and the recent communal violence in New Delhi on March 3, 2020.“How is it spelt? Could you spell it for me?” said Nargis Saifi, at the beginning of an awkward conversation about whether her husband Khalid Saifi believed in “Ghazwa-e-Hind,” a contested phrase used by a certain section of people to refer to a so-called ‘holy raid’ for Muslim domination over the Indian subcontinent. Nargis isn’t the only one wondering suddenly what the word means.“Umar is a non-believer. Everyone knows that,” said Sabiha Khanum, Umar Khalid’s mother, with an incredulous laugh. “How can he relate to something that is Islamic? This is not justified.”A disclosure statement attributed to Saifi during the Delhi Police’s investigation of the Delhi riots says that he, a businessman, and Khalid, a political activist, are proponents of the controversial idea.  Disclosure statements are taken soon after an arrest, and do not have evidentiary value in a trial unless they lead to the discovery of new evidence. Defence lawyers in Delhi riot cases have contested the veracity of the statements attributed to their clients.


The wire Exclusive: Delhi Police Blows Cover of Secret Riot 'Witnesses', Chargesheet Outs Identities

New Delhi: It’s a blunder which could cost careers if not lives. The Delhi Police Special Cell has (inadvertently?) included in its voluminous chargesheet in the Delhi riots ‘conspiracy’ case a document that provides the full names and addresses of 15 ‘public witnesses’ whose identities the police claims require protection. Indeed, the chargesheet uses pseudonyms whenever their statements have been quoted, purportedly because they apprehend a threat to their lives.The 15 public witnesses – four Hindu and 11 Muslim, as it now appears, based on their disclosed identities – have been quoted copiously in the ‘final report’ section of the chargesheet in FIR 59/20 using what the police calls “pseudo names”: Beta, Gama [sic], Delta, Echo, Golf, Hector, Jupiter, Leema [sic], Mike, Oscar, Alpha, Bravo, Omega, Victor and Charlie.If indeed the witnesses have grounds to be so fearful of the accused, the Delhi Police officers who have disclosed their names and addresses to the accused – all of whom were given copies of the chargesheet – after themselves insisting on secrecy have a lot to answer for.The disclosure – which causes both dismay and mirth – also raises doubts about the credibility of Delhi Police’s investigations and the quality of the security it is meant to provide in the national capital.It is not clear if the trial court has noticed this bloomer.


Modi Govt Criticised By EU Rights Body Over Amnesty Closure, Foreign Media Calls It 'Grim Sign'

The Chair of the European Parliament’s Subcommittee on Human Rights, Maria Arena has expressed concern over the deteriorating rule of law in India and the closure of Amnesty International India’s operations.In a statement, Arena said that the “protests over the proposed citizenship verification process and the discriminatory citizenship law amendments have resulted in arbitrary detentions and an unnecessary loss of life.”The statement added that journalists and other peaceful critics continue to be arrested under draconian counter-terrorism and sedition laws, while human rights defenders are unceasingly and severely targeted by the authorities. Referring to Amnesty’s report on Delhi riots, the statement said that there should also be a fully independent, public and transparent inquiry into the role of the police in failing to prevent the violence that broke out and even aiding it. “In the absence of action by India’s authorities since the outbreak of the violence, I strongly support the call for a prompt, thorough, independent and impartial investigation into all human rights violations committed by law enforcement officials,” Arena said.



European Parliament’s Subcommittee on Human Rights cautions against increasing attacks on religious minorities in India

Maria Arena, Chair of the European Parliament’s Subcommittee on Human Rights has cautioned against the increasing attacks on religious minorities in India, stating that it carries serious implications on European Union and India’s bilateral relations.  “It is with great concern that I have been observing the rule of law deteriorate in India, which is the very cornerstone of our special relationship,” said Arena. She continued that marginalized communities and religious minorities in India, particularly Muslims, “have been under increasing pressure for a long time” for being critics of government policies under the Narendra Modi regime. Arena’s statement comes after 15th European Union – India Summit in July this year where participants endorsed the “EU-India Strategic Partnership: A Roadmap to 2025”, reaffirming their “commitment to promoting the shared values of human rights and fundamental freedoms.”TCN News


Over 93,500 data science jobs vacant in India: Report

New Delhi :Over 93,500 data science jobs were vacant in India at the end of August 2020, claims a study on jobs and hiring trends in analytics and data science domains conducted by Great Learning, an ed-tech platform for professional and higher education. India contributing 9.8 per cent of the total global analytics job openings in August 2020 compared to 7.2 per cent in January this year, the report claims as it suggests that the job in this domain remain unaffected by the CoVID-19 pandemic.“While the sector did witness a slight decrease in vacancies (from 109,000 vacancies in February to 82,500 vacancies in August 2020), the demand has continued to be fairly consistent across key industry sectors. The factors contributing to the increased demand include an increase in funding in Indian analytics startups, investment in the development of enhanced analytics capabilities in India, and a greater proportion of jobs outsourced to firms based in India owing to the pandemic. The current demand is dominated by MNC and domestic IT and KPO organisations that are shifting jobs to India and are recruiting in large numbers,” as per the report.


UGC declares 24 universities as fake; maximum from Uttar Pradesh followed by Delhi

University Grants Commission (UGC) on Oct. 7 announced a list of 24 “self-styled, unrecognised institutions” in the country, terming them as “fake” with the maximum of them operating from Uttar Pradesh followed by Delhi.“Students and public are informed that currently 24 self-styled, unrecognised institutions are functioning in contravention of UGC Act, which have been declared as fake universities and these are not empowered to confer any degree,” UGC Secretary Rajnish Jain said.While eight of these universities are from Uttar Pradesh, Delhi has 7, and Odisha and West Bengal two each.Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Puducherry and Maharashtra have one such fake university each.



Student Activist of SIO Telangana Files PIL in High Court for Urdu Medium Online Classes

HYDERABAD — Abdul Sami, a Law student from Hyderabad and activist of the Student Islamic Organisation (SIO) Telangana, has filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Telangana High Court, seeking directions to the state government to ensure availability of online education also in non-Telugu mediums of instruction, including Urdu.SIO State President Dr. Talha Faiyazuddin said in a statement that the state administration seemed to be systematically eradicating Urdu from education as proved by disregarding Urdu as a medium for online classes.SIO Telangana has been studying the case of Urdu medium education in the state. There about 1,50,000 students depending on Urdu as their medium of instruction. The gradual conversion of courses offered in Urdu in Government Degree colleges into English medium and the authorities’ lackadaisical attitude toward the state of Urdu-medium high schools have clearly indicated the intention of the state government to disregard Urdu.Clarion India






Unrest brews in Kyrgyzstan as political crisis deepens

Kyrgyzstan slid deeper into chaos as rival opposition factions made grabs for power on Wednesday, a day after they stormed government buildings, forcing the prime minister to quit and a parliamentary election to be annulled.There was also more unrest overnight, with reports of scuffles and clashes between people in the capital. Bishkek residents, who went through violent revolts followed by looting in 2005 and 2010, have quickly formed vigilante neighbourhood watch units to reinforce police. The vigilantes scuffled with protesters who tried to force their way into government buildings or attacked businesses such as shops and restaurants, according to the report.A group set up by several Kyrgyz opposition parties, the People’s Coordination Council Opposition, said on Wednesday it was assuming all state powers and dissolving parliament. On Tuesday, Kyrgyzstan’s parliament agreed to nominate opposition politician Sadyr Zhaparov – freed from prison by protesters hours earlier – for prime minister, but an angry mob then broke into the hotel where it convened, forcing Zhaparov to flee through a back door, according to Kyrgyz media.


Iranian president warns Azerbaijan-Armenia conflict could turn into regional war

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned of the danger of the Azerbaijan-Armenia conflict turning into a regional war.“We must be attentive that the war between Armenia and Azerbaijan does not become a regional war. Peace is the basis of our work and we hope to restore stability to the region in a peaceful way,” Rouhani said in televised remarks.He also said Iran would not allow “states to send terrorists to our borders under various pretexts”.


Kuwait’s new emir names Sheikh Meshaal as new crown prince

Kuwait’s new ruler Emir Sheikh Nawaf al-Ahmad al-Sabah on Wednesday named Sheikh Meshaal al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah, currently the deputy head of the National Guard, as crown prince of the Gulf state.The selection of Sheikh Meshaal, which must be approved by the Gulf Arab state’s parliament, “was blessed by the Al-Sabah family,” state news agency KUNA cited a statement from the emir’s office as saying.Earlier, two members of Kuwait’s ruling family posted messages on Twitter pledging allegiance to Sheikh Meshaal as crown prince.Sheikh Nawaf assumed power following the death of his brother Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad last week, at a time of tension between Kuwait’s larger neighbours Saudi Arabia and Iran and as the government tries to shore up finances strained by low oil prices and the coronavirus pandemic.


Turkey to test Russian S-400 missile system, US says it is ‘deeply concerned’

Turkey is to conduct a test of the Russian S-400 missile defence system next week, angering the US and causing it to be “deeply concerned”.According to the US news site Bloomberg, which cited sources familiar with the matter, Turkey will be conducting the comprehensive test of the defence system it purchased from Russia, primarily to observe the readiness of Turkish military personnel at the test site in the northern Sinop province on the coast of the Black Sea. These tests will reportedly not involve activating the system’s batteries.Turkey’s purchase of the Russian-made missile defence system has been a cause of tensions between the country and the US over the past two years, with Washington constantly urging Ankara to return the system to Moscow. It also made it a condition for selling its own Patriot missile system to Turkey, but President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has previously refused to give up the S-400 system.


Islamic scholar Qaradawi receives Taliban delegation in Qatar

Renowned Islamic scholar and former President of the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMC), Sheikh Youssef Al-Qaradawi, on Monday received the Taliban delegation which is currently visiting the Qatari capital Doha where intra-Afghan talks are taking place.Al-Qaradawi posted a photograph of the meeting on Twitter and said: “In my house, the participating delegation of Taliban in the ongoing intra-Afghan negotiations in [Qatar’s capital] Doha […] and talks about the diplomatic efforts to end decades of conflict.”Meanwhile, the International Union of Muslim Scholars said in a statement that its President, Ahmed Al-Raissouni, also met with the delegation and discussed the negotiations which are taking place under Qatari auspices.


Israel: Likud’s popularity declines as anti-Netanyahu protests continue

A survey conducted by an Israeli TV channel revealed that the Likud party has suffered a sharp decline in its popularity and would win only 26 seats if elections were held now, the Times of Israel reported.Channel 12, which conducted the survey, reported that if elections were held, Yamina party, led by Naftali Bennett, is expected to attain 23 seats. Likud party led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is facing multiple corruption cases, won 36 seats in the last election and Yamina got only six.Commenting on the results, Likud said in a statement: “Everyone knows how it will end. We’re used to the left-wing media propping up Bennett to bring down Prime Minister Netanyahu and Likud. It won’t work this time either.”


Survey finds overwhelming Arab opposition to normalisation

A public opinion survey in the Arab region has found that citizens of 13 states are overwhelmingly opposed to normalisation, despite some of their governments considering the establishment of ties with Israel.The annual Arab Opinion Index (AOI) published by the Arab Centre for Research and Policy Studies yesterday, found that more than 85 per cent of its 28,000 respondents opposed diplomatic recognition of Israel. Only six per cent of those polled said that they would support such a move.Notably, Sudan, which has been billed widely as the next state to establish ties with Israel, had 79 per cent of its citizens who responded saying that they would oppose normalisation; only 13 per cent support the move.


 Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq


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