Two mediators appointed by the Supreme Court to speak to protestors at Shaheen Bagh in Delhi met demonstrators there and urged them to consider holding their protests elsewhere. Senior advocates Sadhna Ramachandran and Sanjay Hegde said they would listen to all sides, but added that people besides the protestors had rights too.
West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee blamed the central government after Bengali star and former leader Tapas Pal died following a cardiac arrest. Banerjee said that “vendetta politics” had caused Pal’s death. Pal was an accused in the Rose Valley chit scam.
United States President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that he was “saving the big deal for later on”, referring to a possible trade deal with India when he visits New Delhi and Ahmedabad on February 24 and 25. “Well, we can have a trade deal with India, but I’m really saving the big deal for later on,” Trump told reporters as he left the White House for a trip to California.
The Delhi High Court Bar Association on Wednesday urged its members to abstain from work on Thursday in protest against the Supreme Court collegium’s proposal to transfer Justice S Muralidhar to the Punjab and Haryana High Court. Muralidhar had been a judge at the Delhi High Court since 2006.
Another Indian crew member has tested positive for the novel coronavirus on board a British cruise ship quarantined near the port city of Yokohama in Japan, the Indian Embassy in Tokyo said on Wednesday. With this, seven Indians on the Diamond Princess have now tested positive for COVID-19 – the official name of the virus.
A court in Delhi on Wednesday granted bail to three bureaucrats who worked with former Union minister P Chidambaram in connection with the INX Media case filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation.
A poet and a journalist in Karnataka’s Koppal district have been arrested over a poem critical of the Citizenship Amendment Act and the proposed all-India National Register of Citizens, The Indian Express reported on Wednesday. Siraj Bisaralli, the poet, and the journalist Rajabaxi HV were taken into custody on Tuesday after they surrendered at a district court, the police said.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal met Union Home Minister Amit Shah at the latter’s home on Wednesday, ANI reported. The Aam Aadmi Party chief, who took oath for a third straight term three days ago, said the meeting was fruitful.
A Supreme Court-appointed mediation panel visited Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh locality on Wednesday to talk to anti-Citizenship Act protestors, reported ANI. Advocates Sanjay Hegde and Sadhana Ramachandran have been tasked with convincing the demonstrators to end their protest, which has been going on since the middle of December.
Opposition leaders in Karnataka questioned the Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled state government on the rearrest of three Kashmiri engineering students facing sedition charges in Hubballi city of Dharwad district, The Indian Express reported on Wednesday. The Karnataka Police had arrested the students of KLE Institute of Technology first on Saturday after the college filed a complaint about a video in which they allegedly said “Pakistan zindabad”. They were released on Sunday due to insufficient evidence, but rearrested on Monday.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday blamed the Narendra Modi government’s “vendetta politics” for the death of former Trinamool Congress MP Tapas Pal, Hindustan Times reported. Pal, a former Bengali film superstar, died of cardiac arrest in Mumbai on Tuesday. He was an accused in the Rose Valley chit fund scam, and spent 13 months in prison in connection with the case.
All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen chief and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi on Wednesday asked the Unique Identification Authority of India how many Muslims and Dalits were among those it had asked to prove their citizenship. This came a day media reports said the government body issued notices to 127 people in the city earlier this month for allegedly obtaining the Aadhaar card on “false pretenses”. Scroll.in could confirm the identities of three of the 127 people. All three are Muslim. The notices were issued even though Aadhaar is proof of residency and not citizenship.
A sessions court in Madhya Pradesh’s Ratlam town on Tuesday acquitted eight Christians accused of kidnapping 60 children for fraudulent religious conversion. The case dates back to May 22, 2017 when they were escorting 60 children from Adivasi Christian families to a religious retreat in Nagpur, Maharashtra. They were detained by the railway police in Ratlam, who registered a case of kidnapping and forced conversion against them.
The Uttar Pradesh Irrigation Department has released 500 cusecs of water into the Yamuna river in Agra in order to improve its “environmental condition” ahead of a possible visit by United States President Donald Trump to the city, PTI reported on Wednesday. Trump is scheduled to be in Gujarat’s capital Ahmedabad, and New Delhi on February 24 and 25.
The Karnataka High Court on Tuesday observed that there was a deliberate attempt to cover up excess by the Mangaluru Police during a protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act in December by implicating innocent people, reported The Hindu. Two persons were shot dead by the police and a third suffered bullet injuries during the protest on December 19. The administration had imposed curfew in several areas of the district and mobile internet services were suspended for 48 hours.
A high-powered committee headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has selected President Ram Nath Kovind’s Secretary Sanjay Kothari as the next chief vigilance commissioner, media reports said on Wednesday. The committee also chose former Information and Broadcasting Secretary Bimal Julka as the new chief information commissioner, PTI reported. Julka is an information commissioner at present.
Members of the Federation of Tamil Nadu Islamic and Political Organisations gathered in front of Kalaivanar Arangam in Chennai on Wednesday to protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act, The Hindu reported. The protestors gathered at the site despite the Madras High Court order prohibiting them from carrying out a demonstration.
The Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday accused the Congress of “having links with Pakistan” after former Mumbai Commissioner of Police Rakesh Maria’s book claimed that the Lashkar-e-Taiba wanted to pass of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks as a saffron plot, The Indian Express reported.
In the memoir, titled Let Me Say It Now, Maria said that 26/11 terror attack convict Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab would have died as Bengaluru resident Samir Dinesh Chaudhari, with a “red thread tied around his wrist”, had the Lashkar-e-Taiba succeeded in its plans to pin the blame on Hindu extremists.
Three militants were killed in an encounter with security forces in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday night, said the police. The militants have been identified as Jangeer Rafiq Wani, Raja Umar Maqbool Bhat and Uzair Amin Bhat. All three were affiliated to Ansar Ghazwa ul Hind, reported ANI.
The Indian Army welcomes the Supreme Court’s order to the government to grant permanent commission to women in the force, but the time is not right to involve them in combat roles, General Officer Commanding-in-chief of Western Command Lieutenant General RP Singh said on Tuesday, the Hindustan Times reported.
“We welcome the SC ruling to give women officers permanent commission,” Singh said during an interaction with reporters at the Western Command’s Investiture Ceremony in Dehradun on Tuesday. “We don’t have any issues or regrets on the same. However, as far as combat role for them is concerned, I think the right time for it has not come yet.”
Authorities in Ahmedabad will spend around Rs 80 crore to Rs 85 crore on preparations for the upcoming visit by United States President Donald Trump, Reuters reported on Wednesday. In his two-day tour starting on February 24, Trump will spend only around three hours in the city.
The total expenditure is equivalent to about 1.5% of the annual budget of Gujarat. Of the total expense, almost half is security-related costs, two unidentified officials told Reuters. More than 12,000 police officers are expected to be deployed for the visit.
United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres said on Tuesday that the opening of the Kartarpur corridor for Sikh pilgrims from India is a practical sign of Pakistan’s desire for peace and interfaith harmony, PTI reported. Guterres made the remark after visiting the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, said to be the final resting place of Sikhism’s founder Guru Nanak Dev.
The Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbhandhik Committee and Evacuee Trust Property Board officials received Guterres at the Kartarpur Sahib, 125 km from Lahore. A Sikh boy presented Guterres a bouquet.
United States President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that he was “saving the big deal for later on”, referring to a possible trade deal with India when he visits New Delhi and Ahmedabad on February 24 and 25, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday. “Well, we can have a trade deal with India, but I’m really saving the big deal for later on,” Trump told reporters as he left the White House for a trip to California.
Panchayat elections in Jammu and Kashmir scheduled next month were postponed on Tuesday because of concerns about the law-and-order situation in the Union Territory. Elections for almost 13,000 vacant seats were expected to be conducted in eight phases between March 5 and March 20.
Chinese Ambassador to India Sun Weidong on Tuesday thanked India for helping his country deal the novel coronavirus outbreak, reported Hindustan Times. The toll in China crossed 2,000 on Wednesday morning. The virus is officially known as COVID-19. The Chinese ambassador said India had showed willingness to stand by Beijing by providing aid. He also recollected the time when an Indian delegation had visited China during the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS, outbreak in 2003.
Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti’s daughter Iltija Mufti on Tuesday said the region has been dealing with economic, psychological, and emotional crises since the Centre abrogated its special constitutional status in August and imposed several restrictions. “I have full respect for the prime minister...but I feel very sad that either he is being misled or he is willfully misleading the entire country,” Iltija Mufti said at a press conference in New Delhi.
At least three residents of Hyderabad city – all of them Muslim – have been served notices by the Unique Identification Authority of India, directing them to prove that they are Indian citizens and have not obtained Aadhaar numbers through fraudulent means. According to the notices, dated February 3, the individuals have been summoned because the authority’s regional office in Hyderabad received “a complaint/allegation” that they were not Indian nationals and had obtained Aadhaar through “false pretences” and by submitting false documents.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday said the Centre will soon announce steps to deal with the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on certain sectors of Indian industry, reported Hindustan Times. Three positive coronavirus cases in India have been reported from Kerala till now, but two of the patients who tested positive have been discharged in the past week.
The Indian High Commission in London on Tuesday confirmed that British MP Debbie Abrahams was deported to Dubai on Monday as she did not “hold a valid visa”. The Labour Party MP had alleged that immigration officials at the Delhi airport on Monday did not give her any reason for denying her entry into India and cancelling her visa, which she said was valid till October 2020.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday said he will not block the implementation of the National Population Register in the state as there was nothing controversial about it, PTI reported. He said he will “personally check the columns” in the exercise.
The chief minister also said there was no reason for people to be afraid of the Citizenship Amendment Act and reiterated that he will not allow the implementation of the proposed National Register of Citizens.