J&K: India should allow UN to assess situation, MEPs lacked expertise, says Finland foreign minister

Finland’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto on Thursday raised concerns about the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, and said India should allow United Nations observers and diplomatic missions to visit the region to get first-hand experience, The Hindu reported.

Ayodhya verdict: Home Ministry asks all states to enhance security, sends extra personnel to UP

The Union Home Ministry on Thursday asked all states, in particular Uttar Pradesh, to enhance security ahead of the Supreme Court verdict in the Ayodhya case. The verdict is expected any day before November 17, when Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi retires.

Kartarpur Corridor: Remove welcome video showing Khalistani separatists, India tells Pakistan

The Ministry of External Affairs on Thursday asked Pakistan to remove an objectionable welcome video created for pilgrims visiting a Sikh shrine in Kartarpur in which Khalistani separatist leaders, including Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, are seen.

J&K restrictions: ‘Some people suffer in every curfew,’ observes Supreme Court while hearing plea

The Supreme Court on Thursday said some people are bound to suffer when restrictions are imposed to maintain peace. The top court was hearing a petition on the legality of the restrictions on movement and communications imposed in Jammu and Kashmir following the abrogation of its special status under Article 370 of the Constitution in August.

Twitter India dismisses allegations of bias, says it enforces rules impartially

Twitter on Thursday responded to criticism of its recent decisions to suspend certain Indian accounts, claiming it had been impartial in enforcing its rules and was committed to transparency. The social media platform said it enforces its one set of rules “judiciously and impartially for all individuals – regardless of their belief or background”.

India needs to be more transparent about fiscal numbers, says IMF deputy director

A senior official at the International Monetary Fund has called on the Indian government to be more transparent about its fiscal numbers, pointing out that it lags behind other Group of 20 countries in this regard. The world body’s Deputy Director Anne-Mary Gulde said India had missed its fiscal deficit targets in the last few years, and asked the Narendra Modi government to ensure “credible fiscal consolidation”. She made the remarks at a National Stock Exchange event in Mumbai on Wednesday.

Maharashtra: ‘Call me if you decide to give us CM’s post, else don’t,’ Uddhav Thackeray tells BJP

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday told his party MLAs that he did not want to break the alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party in Maharashtra, but wanted it to keep its promise on sharing the chief minister’s post. He said the BJP had made such a promise before the Lok Sabha elections earlier this year.

Air pollution levels shoot up in Kolkata and parts of South India, experts link it to smog in north

High pollution levels were recorded in cities in South and East India on Thursday afternoon, with air quality ranging between “poor” and “very poor” in cities such as Chennai, Bengaluru, and Kolkata. While the air quality in Hyderabad was “moderate”, it was “poor” in cities such as Amaravati and Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh.

Economic slowdown: Priyanka Gandhi criticises BJP, says people have been left to suffer

Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi on Thursday criticised the Bharatiya Janata Party government for the state of the economy, and accused BJP leaders of not taking into account the suffering of people.

Bengaluru: Police file FIR against group heckled for ‘disrespecting’ national anthem at movie hall

The Subramanya Nagar Police in Bengaluru have registered a first information report against a group of people who allegedly did not stand up when the national anthem was played in a movie hall. They have been charged under Section 3 of the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, 1971, police inspector Sadananda M told The Hindu.

Maharashtra: ‘We will get Shiv Sena support, Devendra Fadnavis will be CM,’ says Nitin Gadkari

Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said the Bharatiya Janata Party will get the support of alliance partner Shiv Sena for government formation in Maharashtra under the chief ministership of Devendra Fadnavis, ruling out any possibility of his return to state politics at the helm of the government.

Jharkhand: One allegedly lynched, another injured over suspicion of stealing truck battery

A man in Jharkhand’s Dhanbad district was lynched and another suffered serious injuries after a mob beat them up for allegedly stealing the battery of a truck on Wednesday. One of the two accused of the theft died on the spot and the other was taken to the hospital, the police said.

Chinmayanand case: SIT is torturing us, alleges complainant’s mother in letters to Supreme Court, HC

The Special Investigation Team investigating cases of sexual harassment and extortion involving Uttar Pradesh Bharatiya Janata Party leader Chinmayanand has been accused of torturing the family of the 23-year-old law student who filed the complaint against the politician. The complainant is in jail at present along with three others for allegedly trying to blackmail Chinmayanand and attempting to extort Rs 5 crore from him.

Former Ranji cricketers Gautam, Qazi arrested in Karnataka Premier League spot-fixing scandal

CM Gautam, a first-class player who was part of three IPL teams, and his former Karnataka teammate Abrar Qazi were on Thursday arrested for allegedly accepting money to spot-fix in the scandal-ridden Karnataka Premier League.

Goa government reverses order restricting public entry to Raj Bhavan but with riders

The government of Goa on Thursday reversed its order a day after the tourism department announced that the Raj Bhavan would be closed to the public for “security reasons”. The order to shut the governor’s official residence for six months was issued after newly appointed Governor Satya Pal Malik took charge.

Kartarpur corridor: Indian pilgrims will need passport to visit shrine, says Pakistan Army official

Pakistan Army spokesperson Major General Asif Ghafoor on Wednesday said that Indian pilgrims would require a passport to use the Kartarpur Corridor to visit the gurdwara. The statement contradicted earlier remarks that Indian pilgrims will not need a passport.

‘We may be sliding into Orwellian state’: Justice Srikrishna worried about WhatsApp spyware attacks

Justice (retired) BN Srikrishna, who has chaired a committee of experts on data protection, has told The Indian Express that he is alarmed by the surveillance of phones of Indian human rights activists, lawyers, journalists, and scholars by operatives using a WhatsApp spyware called Pegasus that was developed by an Israeli company reported. “If the reports are true, we may be sliding into an Orwellian state with Big Brother snooping on us, as depicted in the novel 1984,” Srikrishna said.

2017 Dera Sacha Sauda violence: Ram Rahim’s daughter Honeypreet Insan gets bail

The chief judicial magistrate court in Haryana on Wednesday granted bail to Honeypreet Insan, the adopted daughter of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim, in connection with the 2017 Panchkula violence case. She was released from Ambala jail in the evening, said defence counsel RS Chauhan.

Cyclone Bulbul ‘very likely’ to intensify into severe cyclonic storm, Maha to weaken to a depression

The India Meteorological Department on Thursday said that cyclone Bulbul was “very likely” to intensify into a severe cyclonic storm over the Bay of Bengal in the next 24 hours. It may head towards the coasts of West Bengal and Bangladesh, the weather department said.

Kudankulam cyber attack: North Korean hackers stole technology data, analysts tell The Quint

Suspected North Korean hackers stole technology-related data from the computers at Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant, The Quint reported on Thursday. The cyber attackers, who deployed a malware designed for data theft, were backed by the North Korean government, said IssueMaker Labs, an expert group of malware analysts based in South Korea. “We have found that Nuclear Power Plant technology-related data has been taken,” Simon Choi, founder of IssueMaker Labs, said.

Modi asks ministers not to make irresponsible comments on Ayodhya case, urges them to maintain peace

Prime Minister Narendra Modi reportedly asked his council of ministers to refrain from making any out-of-turn statements on the Ayodhya case, multiple reports said on Thursday, citing unidentified officials. He also asked them to maintain peace and harmony in India once the verdict is delivered.

Maharashtra: BJP leaders to meet governor today, Sena chief calls for a meeting with MLAs

A delegation of Bharatiya Janata Party leaders, including Maharashtra unit chief Chandrakant Patil and state Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, is likely to meet Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari on Thursday. The deadline for the government formation in the state, which has been delayed so far as the BJP and Shiv Sena are locked in a power-sharing dispute, is Saturday, when the term of the 13th Assembly will end.

Jammu and Kashmir: Train services between Banihal and Baramulla likely to resume on November 11

Train services in the Kashmir Valley are likely to resume from November 11, PTI reported on Wednesday. The services between Banihal and Baramulla were suspended after the Centre’s decision to revoke the region’s special status. Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Baseer Ahmad Khan has asked railway authorities to inspect the tracks within three days. A trial run will be held on November 10.

Air pollution: Modi asks Agriculture Ministry to give machines to farmers to stop stubble burning

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday asked the Ministry of Agriculture to distribute equipment to farmers of Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh on a priority basis to tackle stubble burning. Crop burning is considered one of the main reasons behind the rising level of air pollution in the Delhi-NCR region and other northern states. This is the first time Modi has directly intervened in the matter.

Elgar Parishad case: Bail pleas of six activists rejected by Pune court

A special court in Pune on Wednesday rejected the bail pleas of six activists in connection with the Elgar Parishad case. Activists Rona Wilson, Shoma Sen, Surendra Gadling, Mahesh Raut, Varavara Rao and Sudhir Dhavle are accused of having Maoist links. The six accused had sought bail on the ground that the police had not produced any substantial evidence against them.

Punjab CM Amarinder Singh welcomes SC order to provide farmers financial aid to curb stubble burning

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Wednesday welcomed the Supreme Court’s order directing authorities to provide financial assistance to farmers in the state to stop stubble burning. In a bid to save Delhi from the rising pollution levels, the top court earlier in the day asked the governments of Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh to provide operational expenses to small and marginal farmers so that they can hire machines to deal with crop stubble.

‘Reconsider decision to scrap Tipu Jayanti celebrations,’ Karnataka High Court tells BJP government

The Karnataka High Court on Wednesday asked the Bharatiya Janata Party government in the state to reconsider its decision to cancel Tipu Jayanti celebrations. During the tenure of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah of the Congress, the state government used to celebrate the 18th century Mysuru ruler’s birth anniversary every year on November 10. The BJP government led by BS Yediyurappa scrapped the celebrations after taking oath in July.

Arundhati Roy, Salman Rushdie’s books among BBC’s 100 ‘novels that shaped our world’

The British Broadcasting Corporation on Tuesday announced a list of ‘100 Novels That Shaped Our World’. A panel of leading writers, curators and critics compiled the list for the network.The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy, The Moor’s Last Sigh by Salman Rushdie, Swami and Friends by RK Narayan, A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth and A House for Mr Biswas by VS Naipaul were the books by Indian writers on the list.

Nirmala Sitharaman announces Rs 25,000-crore fund for completing stalled housing projects

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Wednesday announced a special window, structured as an Alternative Investment Fund of Rs 25,000 crore, for priority debt funding of stalled housing projects. Sitharaman said the government would contribute Rs 10,000 crore to the fund. Banks such as the State Bank of India, and the Life Insurance Corporation will contribute Rs 15,000 crore. This will be an initial amount and more money may be added if necessary.

Kannan Gopinathan, who quit IAS in protest against J&K lockdown, receives chargesheet from Centre

A former Indian Administrative Service officer who quit the service in August in protest against the “denial of freedom of expression to the people of Jammu and Kashmir” on Wednesday lashed out at the Union Home Ministry for filing a chargesheet against him. Kannan Gopinathan, who was the collector of Dadra and Nagar Haveli when he resigned, has been accused of insubordination.

Now, follow and debate the day’s most significant stories on Scroll Exchange.