Kerala nurse in Saudi Arabia is infected with Wuhan coronavirus, says Union minister

A nurse from Kerala working in Saudi Arabia is infected with the Wuhan coronavirus that has killed 17 people in China, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan confirmed on Thursday. She was working at the Jazeera Abha Al Hayath Hospital in the city of Khamis Mushait in Southwest Saudi Arabia. The nurse who tested positive is believed to have got the virus while tending to a Filipino nurse.

Carry PM’s photo in state government advertisements, Devendra Fadnavis tells CM Uddhav Thackeray

Bharatiya Janata Party leader and former Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has written to his successor Uddhav Thackeray of the Shiv Sena, demanding that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s photographs be included in state government advertisements. Fadnavis, who also put up his letter on social media, claimed that excluding the prime minister’s photograph violates Supreme Court orders.

After ABVP members object, Shri Ram College of Commerce cancels panel talk on anti-CAA protests

The North East Cell of Shri Ram College of Commerce on Thursday cancelled a scheduled panel discussion on the Citizenship Act protests because of the “possibility of violence on campus”. The university reportedly came under pressure from the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad – the student wing of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. The discussion was titled: “Why the North East India is protesting?”

Raj Thackeray unveils new MNS flag, announces son’s entry in politics

Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray on Thursday unveiled a new party flag, and announced his son Amit Thackeray’s entry in politics. The party held a day-long Maha Adhiveshan in Mumbai’s Goregaon suburb on the 94th birth anniversary of Shiv Sena founder Balasaheb Thackeray.

CJI SA Bobde says death-row convicts ‘cannot go on fighting endlessly’

Chief Justice of India SA Bobde on Thursday said the Supreme Court should focus on the rights of the victims, and not just those of the accused, a day after the Centre moved the top court to seek “victim-centric” guidelines in death-row cases.

Anti-CAA resolutions passed by states are a political gesture, says Shashi Tharoor

Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Thursday said resolutions passed by states against the Citizenship Amendment Act were a “political gesture” as they do not have a role in granting citizenship. So far, Left-ruled Kerala and Congress-led Punjab have passed such Assembly resolutions demanding the withdrawal of the law, while West Bengal has promised to bring one to its Assembly.

UP Police accused CAA protestors of being armed, but seized weapons a day after their arrest: Report

The police in Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar city did not seize weapons from anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protestors charged with rioting and damaging public property during the demonstrations on December 20, The Indian Express reported on Thursday. The police told a court earlier this month that they had seized weapons several hours later just metres from a police station.

‘Do not implement NPR or NRC,’ scholars and former civil servants urge non-BJP chief ministers

A group of former civil servants and academics have urged the chief ministers of states not ruled by the Bharatiya Janata Party to not implement the National Population Register and the National Register of Citizens.

Protest watch: ‘Every bagh can be Shaheen Bagh,’ says Bhim Army chief at Delhi protest site

Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad on Wednesday night visited the Shaheen Bagh locality in Delhi that has emerged as the epicentre of nationwide protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act and the proposed National Register of Citizens. Azad declared there would be 5,000 more such protest sites across the country in the next 10 days.

‘Sovereignty of J&K was temporary’: Centre argues against referring Article 370 to larger SC bench

The Centre on Thursday told the Supreme Court that the sovereignty of Jammu and Kashmir was temporary, reported Bar and Bench. It added that the most important thing was always the consolidation of the country. Attorney General KK Venugopal, who is representing the Centre in the case, also argued that there was no question of a plebiscite in light of the “explicit declarations of Jammu and Kashmir to be an integral part of India in their own Constitution”.

BJP’s Sanjeev Balyan says 10% quota for Western UP in JNU, Jamia will stop ‘anti-national’ slogans

Union minister Sanjeev Balyan on Wednesday said the “right cure” for students of Jawaharlal Nehru University and Jamia Millia Islamia University was to reserve 10% seats for people from western Uttar Pradesh, ANI reported.

95 Indian women politicians received one million abusive Tweets in three months: Amnesty study

An estimated one million “problematic” or “abusive” tweets targeting 95 women politicians in India were posted between March and May 2019, a study by Amnesty International India showed. This averaged to 113 such tweets daily per woman politician in the period around the General Elections.

This was 13.8% of the total number of tweets that mentioned the 95 women in this period. Of all such tweets classified as “problematic” or “abusive”, the study found a fifth to be containing sexism or misogyny. Muslim women politicians, or those “perceived as Muslims”, received 55.5% more such tweets than those from other religions, the study found. Women from marginalised castes got 59% more caste-based abuse than others.

‘Pakistan takes to hate speech as fish takes to water,’ India says at UN

India on Wednesday again lashed out at Pakistan for raising the Kashmir matter at the United Nations, accusing it of taking to hate speech “just as a fish takes to water”, PTI reported. “Every time this [Pakistani] delegation speaks, it spews venom and false narratives of monumental proportions,” India’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador K Nagaraj Naidu, told the General Assembly.

J&K: Mehbooba Mufti’s daughter criticises Centre’s outreach programme, calls it normalcy acrobatics

Iltija Mufti, the daughter of former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, on Wednesday described central ministers’ visit to the region as “normalcy acrobatics”. She added that the Centre’s outreach programme should be seen as “vote bank politics”. Union Minister of Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Tuesday started the Centre’s outreach programme following the government’s decision to scrap the region’s special status under Article 370 of the Constitution on August 5.

Nitish Kumar says JD(U) leader Pavan Varma is free to quit party amid rift over Citizenship Act

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Thursday said Janata Dal (United) national spokesperson Pavan Varma was free to leave the party, reported NDTV. This came days after Varma’s letters exposed a purported rift in the party over its support to the amended Citizenship Act. “He can go and join any party he likes, my best wishes,” said Kumar. “To give this kind of is surprising. Is this a way to talk?”

Tamil Nadu: Panic withdrawals slow down as bank clarifies NPR letter isn’t a must for KYC checks

Depositors at a branch of Central Bank of India in Tamil Nadu have withdrawn nearly Rs 4.5 crore since Saturday in panic after the bank announced that a letter issued under the National Population Register exercise would be a valid document for customer verification, NDTV reported. The withdrawal spree took place at a branch in Kayalpattinam village near Thoothukudi.

India rejects Trump’s latest offer to help in J&K, says no role for third party mediation

The Ministry of External Affairs on Thursday rejected United States President Donald Trump’s offer to help resolve the Kashmir dispute, saying there was “no role” for a third party mediating in the matter.

Bhima Koregaon violence: Maharashtra government holds meeting with Pune Police to review cases

Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and Home Minister Anil Deshmukh met Pune Police officials on Thursday morning to review cases related to the 2018 Bhima Koregaon violence, reported PTI. Maharashtra Director General Subodh Jaiswal and State Intelligence Commissioner Rashmi Shukla are also present at the meeting. However, details of the meeting at the state secretariat in Mumbai are not yet available.

Imran Khan asks US and United Nations to help de-escalate tension between India, Pakistan

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday said that international powers “must act” to prevent India and Pakistan – the two nuclear-armed neighbours – from reaching a point of no return, reported Dawn. Khan asked both the United States and United Nations to help de-escalate tensions with India. “You cannot have two nuclear-armed countries even contemplating a conflict,” Khan said on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos.

Jharkhand: SIT formed after seven villagers beheaded, police unsure of Pathalgadi link

Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren on Wednesday ordered an inquiry by a special investigation team into the murder of seven people in a village in West Singhbhum district on Sunday evening. The villagers were allegedly decapitated and differences over the Pathalgadi movement are suspected to be the reason, some police officials claimed. No one has been arrested so far.

West Singhbhum Superintendent of Police Indrajit Mahata told Hindustan Times that the deceased were anti-Pathalgadi activists, while their attackers were supporters of the movement, but it may be a coincidence. “We will be able to speak about the conclusive Pathalgadi link only after further investigation,” he said.

CAA: Mayawati, Akhilesh Yadav, Asaduddin Owaisi want open debate with BJP after Amit Shah’s dare

Several Opposition leaders on Wednesday said they were ready for an open debate on the amended citizenship law, a day after Union Minister Amit Shah challenged them. Bahujan Samaj Party President Mayawati, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav and All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen President Asaduddin Owaisi agreed to a discussion at any platform.

Magsaysay awardee Sandeep Pandey booked for alleged inappropriate comments against VD Savarkar

Magsaysay Award winner and social activist Sandeep Pandey was on Tuesday booked for allegedly making inappropriate comments against Hindutva ideologue VD Savarkar. He has been accused of inciting the public and provoking “with intent to cause riots”. The activist reportedly made the comments while addressing anti-citizenship law protestors at Aligarh Muslim University on January 19, said the police.

CAA: Women being pushed to protest, they don’t know what amended law is about, says Adityanath

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath on Wednesday alleged that women and children were being pushed forward to protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act, adding that they did not even understand the meaning of the amended legislation. The chief minister said shouting “azadi” slogans amounted to sedition. “If anybody will raise slogans of will amount to sedition and government will take strict action,” Adityanath said.

SC says Article 370 will be referred to larger bench if there is a conflict in earlier two verdicts

The Supreme Court on Wednesday said it will refer the Centre’s decision to scrap the special status of Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 of the Constitution to a seven-judge Constitution bench only if there was a conflict in the earlier two verdicts of the top court. Senior advocates Dinesh Dwivedi and Sanjay Parikh, appearing for Prem Shankar Jha and non-governmental organisation People’s Union for Civil Liberties respectively, told a bench headed by Justice NV Ramana that the earlier verdicts were conflicting in nature.

Citizenship Act: ‘No one will touch you,’ Rajnath Singh assures Muslims

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday reassured Muslims that they would not be affected by the Citizenship Amendment Act, attempting to allay concerns about the Citizenship Amendment Act and the proposed National Register of Citizens. Singh told the audience at a public meeting in the city of Meerut in Uttar Pradesh that Muslims could approach the government if the need arose.

Satya Nadella says countries not friendly to immigrants will lose out on tech boom

Technology giant Microsoft’s Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella has warned countries that fail to attract immigrants that they would lose out as the global technology industry continues to diversify and grown, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday. Last week, Nadella had criticised the Citizenship Amendment Act, saying what was happening in India was “just bad”.

Shaheen Bagh a reaction to five years of ‘cumulative fear’, says former Delhi lieutenant governor

Former Delhi Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung on Wednesday said demonstrations at Shaheen Bagh, which has emerged as the epicentre of the protests in Delhi against the Citizenship Amendment Act, were a reaction to “cumulative fear” over the last five years.