The Asian Independent 01 - 15 Nov. 2019

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Vol : 03 : #30 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

No passport needed for Sikhs

visiting Kartarpur Sahib: Pak

Chandigarh : In a major relief to

Sikh devotees visiting Pakistan for the

celebrations of the 550th Prakash Purb

of Guru Nanak Dev, Islamabad on

Friday announced the waiving of

requirement of a passport for identification

and prior registration for such

visitors.

It also exempted the Indian pilgrims

from paying a $20 entry fee on

the day of inauguration of the corridor

and Guru Nanak Dev's birthday.

"For Sikhs coming for pilgrimage

to Kartarpur from India, I have waived

off 2 requirements: i) they won't need

a passport -- just a valid ID; ii) they no

longer have to register 10 days in

advance," Pakistan Prime Minister

Imran Khan tweeted.

"Also, no fee will be charged on

day of inauguration and on Guruji's

550th birthday," he added.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will

inaugurate the Kartarpur Corridor on

November 9 and dispatch the first lot

of pilgrims to visit Kartarpur Sahib

Gurdwara in Pakistan's Punjab

province on the occasion of the 550th

birth anniversary celebrations of Guru

Nanak Dev that falls on November 12.

Reacting to the announcement,

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder

Singh said the waiver should be

extended to not just "Sikhs but all citizens

of secular India".

Also, he demanded that the fee

should be waived off on "all days

instead of just two".

The Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara,

originally known as Gurdwara Darbar

Sahib, is a highly revered Sikh shrine

where Guru Nanak Dev spent 18 years

of his life and is his final resting place.

Earlier, India and Pakistan signed

an agreement to operationalise the

Kartarpur Corridor to allow Indian pilgrims

a visa free visit to the holy

Darbar Sahib. However, the ticklish

issue of a $20 service fee imposed by

Islamabad remained unresolved.

India signed the deal in the interest

of the pilgrims and timely operationalisation

of the Kartarpur Corridor

before the celebrations.

Orissa High Court bar

association calls off stir

Bhubaneswar : The Orissa High Court Bar Association on

Friday called off their cease work agitation and announced to

resume court work from November 4.

The development came after the Supreme Court directed the

bar association to end the agitation. On October 24, the apex court

observed that there was little doubt that the conduct of the lawyers

fell within the domain of contempt.

"Following Supreme Court's judgement on disruption in court

work and keeping in view larger interests of people, we have

called off our strike," informed Gopalkrushna Mohanty, President,

Orissa High Court Bar Association.

"We will resume work from Monday, but we will continue to

press for our demands at different forums. We have lost confidence

in the Collegium," Mohanty said.

Notably, the lawyers have been abstaining from court work

since October 14 protesting the recommendations of some names

by the Supreme Court Collegium for appointment of judges in the

High Court. The Collegium has recommended names of advocate

Sanjeeb Kumar Panigrahi and judicial officer Bibhu Prasad

Routray to be appointed as Orissa High Court judges.

After the Supreme Court observation, the Bar Council of India

(BCI) also asked the agitating lawyers to withdraw their ongoing

cease-work stir.

’UNCOUTH’:

Puducherry LG

Kiran Bedi as CM

calls her 'demon'

Chennai : Puducherry Lt.

Governor Kiran Bedi on

Friday termed as "unparliamentary,

uncouth and unacceptable"

the term of "demon"

used for her by Chief Minister

V. Narayanasamy.

In a tweet, Bedi said: "The

expression of DEMON used

is unparliamentary, uncalled

for, uncivilised, uncouth and

unacceptable."

Narayanasamy had on

Thursday used the term for

Bedi, with whom he has been

at logger-heads over governance

for long.

Addressing a meeting of

the Congress party, he had

said the Central government

has posted a "demon" here

which is hindering implementation

of welfare schemes.

EU agrees Brexit extension

to Janaury 31, 2020

London, The European

Union (EU) has agreed to

extend Brexit until January 31,

2020, European Council

President Donald Tusk

announced on Monday.

The EU27 has agreed that it

will accept the UK’s request for

a #Brexit flextension until 31

January 2020. The decision is

expected to be formalised

through a written procedure,”

Tusk said in a tweet.

“Flextension” means flexible

extension. If MPs approve the

Brexit deal sooner, the UK

could leave the EU before

January 31, 2020. The draft text of an agreement

for the 27 EU ambassadors – seen by the BBC –

includes two other possible dates for Brexit:

November 30 and December 31.

It also includes a commitment that the

Withdrawal Agreement on the UK’s exit from

the EU cannot be renegotiated in future.

The UK was due to leave the EU on Thursday,

but Prime Minister Boris Johnson was required

to request an extension from the bloc after

Parliament, in a historic session on October 19,

voted against his Brexit deal.

Johnson had repeatedly said the UK would

leave on October 31 deadline “do or die”, but the

law – known as the Benn act – also requires him

to accept the offer.

The development comes as UK MPs prepare

to vote on Monday on proposals by Johnson for

an early general election on December 12.

The Scottish Nationalist Party (SNP) and

Liberal Democrats have also proposed an election

on December 9. Johnson said that if the vote

was approved, his Brexit bill would resume its

progress through Parliament until that is dissolved

on November 6, the BBC reported.

Two-thirds of MPs – 434 – would have to

back the motion for it to pass under the law

which sets election timings. A Downing Street

source said on Sunday that MPs would vote on

an election “so we can get a new Parliament”.

If the vote was lost, the sources said that the

government would then “look at all options”

including ideas similar to those proposed by

other parties.

MPs have already twice rejected a call from

the Prime Minister to hold a general election.


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01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 ASIA

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Who are they seeking

'Azadi' from? asks Imran

Islamabad : As the Jamiat

Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl's (JUI-F)

'Azadi March', led by its chief

Maulana Fazlur Rehman to call

for toppling the incumbent

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)

Team AI :

Devinder Chander

Editor-in-chief

Columnists

V.B. Rawat

Farzana Suri

Arun Kumar

Rahul Kumar

Harminder K. Bhogal

Head Office

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government reached

Islamabad, Prime Minister

Imran Khan posed a query to

the participants "who they are

seeking 'azadi' (freedom)

from?".

While addressing a rally in

Gilgit Baltistan, Prime Minister

Khan said: "If you ask PPP

members they will say things

are becoming expensive...

PML-N members will not

know why they are at the march

and if you ask JUI-F they will

say Jews are about to take over

Islamabad," Dawn news reported.

Khan also queried as to

what the Pakistan's Peoples

Party Chairman Bilawal

Bhutto-Zardari was doing joining

hands with a right-wing

Islamist party. "Bilawal, who

calls himself a liberal, has also

joined the 'jalsa'. (It seems) the

Indian-origin researcher wins award for work on batteries

New Delhi : Dr Neeraj Sharma from

the University of New South Wales

(UNSW), Sydney -- considered one of

the global leaders in the use of neutron

and X-ray scattering methods to study

materials for next-generation lithiumion

batteries - has won the 'Early Career

Researcher of the Year (Physical

Sciences)'. NSW Premier Gladys

Berejiklian honoured 35-year-old Dr

Sharma, from the School of Chemistry

at UNSW, with the award at the

Government House in Sydney, the university

said in a statement on Friday.

The award was given for his work in

lithium-ion batteries found in electronic

devices, electric vehicles and the grid,

as well as next-generation battery systems

such as sodium-ion batteries that

will leave minimal environmental

impact, and transition away from fossil

fuels for energy generation and transportation.

"To develop the next generation of

only thing 'liberal' about

Bilawal is that he is liberally

corrupt," he said. Khan's comments

on Bhutto-Zardari came

hours after the latter addressed

the Azadi March participants

on Friday morning here where

he called the former a "puppet".

technologies, we need better performance

at a lower environmental cost,"

said Dr Sharma. "My work explores

lithium-ion batteries - found in electronic

devices, electric vehicles and the grid

- as well as next-generation battery systems

such as sodium-ion batteries. I find

the study of sodium-ion batteries partic-

The PPP leader added that the

nation was not ready to bow its

head before a "selected" Prime

Minister and "those who have

selected him". The marchers,

who set out from Karachi on

Sunday, left Lahore on

Wednesday and culminated its

journey on Thursday night in

Islamabad. The development

comes after the ruling and the

opposition parties reached an

agreement to let the anti-government

march progress as

planned, as long as they protesters

do not cross the sensitive

"red zone" in Islamabad.

The JUI-F supremo is expected

to present his demands at a

rally after the Friday prayers,

which will also be addressed by

opposition leaders.

Fazlur Rehman gives two-day

deadline to Imran Khan to quit

Islamabad : Jamiat Ulema

Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) chief Maulana

Fazlur Rehman, leading the Azadi

march demanding the resignation of

Prime Minister Imran Khan, has

given him a two-day deadline to

resign. Addressing the march at

Metro Ground in Islamabad on

Friday, Rehman said that we are

giving two days' time to Prime

Minister Imran Khan to resign and

other 'National Organisations' to

withdraw support to the incumbent

government. Several opposition

leaders are also participating in the

march. Rehman said that he doesn't

want any conflict with the 'National

Organisations', rather he wants them to be

stable and neutral. He said, "If we feel that

the organisations continue to back and protect

the illegitimate government, then they

have two days' time. After that we shouldn't

be stopped from forming our perspective

about them. Prime Minister

Imran Khan has two days to resign.

If he doesn't resign in two days, then

the people of Pakistan are capable of

entering the PM House forcefully

and arrest the prime minister."

He slammed the government for

failing to live up to its promises. He

said that the government had promised

to build five million homes for

the poor but they have demolished

more than five million homes

instead. Instead of providing

employment to one crore people, the

government has made 25 lakh people

jobless, he said, adding that the public

can't be left at the mercy of such an irresponsible

government.

* The Asian Independent and people associated with it are not responsible for any claims made by the advertisers and do not endorse in any products or services advertised. Please visit www.theasianindependent.com/tc for more information.

Liver cancer

deaths 50% up in

last 10 YEARS

London : Liver cancer deaths have increased by around 50

per cent in the last decade and have tripled since records began,

researchers have warned.

The new mortality data from Cancer Research UK, shows that

there were around 5,700 deaths from liver cancer in 2017 in the

UK, which is the highest ever yearly number of deaths recorded.

This has climbed from 3,200 deaths in 2007. Of all cancer

types, liver cancer has had the largest increase in deaths over the

last decade and the most rapid rise in deaths since the UK records

began. "Unfortunately, progress in treating liver cancer has been

painfully slow and we desperately need more options for

patients. Another problem is the rise in the number of people

being diagnosed, which has meant we are losing more people to

this disease than ever before," said researcher Helen Reeves,

Professor at Newcastle University.

Experts believe that death rates have risen so steeply because

the number of people being diagnosed with liver cancer has also

increased -- by 60 per cent in the last decade -- and survival is

typically low. It's one of the hardest cancers to treat, and fiveyear

survival can range from anywhere between six per cent and

37 per cent depending on age and gender, the researchers said.

According to the study, while there are several factors affecting

liver cancer risk, being overweight or obese and smoking are

two of the biggest preventable causes.

Twenty-three per cent of liver cancer cases can be linked to

being overweight or obese, and 20 per cent can be linked to

smoking. Overall, around half of cases are preventable.

"Rising levels of obesity and associated conditions like diabetes

and non-alcoholic fatty liver diseases have likely had a big

role in this, although they aren't the only factors," Reeves said.

"A lot of progress has been made saving lives from cancer, but

it's worrying to see deaths from liver cancer increasing at such an

alarming rate," said Michelle Mitchell from Cancer Research

UK. "Far too many lives are being lost, which is why we're funding

more research into this area. And aiming to understand more

about the biology of the disease to develop better treatments,"

Mitchell added.

ularly fascinating and

we have been developing

new electrodes

for these systems," he

elaborated.

By focusing on

electrochemical reactions

in batteries, Dr

Sharma aims to better

understand how electrode

composition,

and structure at the

atomic level, influence

performance.

His research group is

also exploring inherently

safe solid-state batteries, energydense

lithium-sulfur batteries, dual

function solar batteries and methods for

recycling. "We can enable and enhance

the uptake of electric vehicles, ensure

batteries are recycled leaving minimal

environmental impact, and transition

away from fossil fuels for energy generation

and transportation. There is significant

opportunity to shape how we live

into the future," Dr Sharma said.

Researchers from UNSW won half of

the science and engineering awards

announced by the NSW Premier, including

the top prize for 'NSW Scientist of

the Year'. "Such achievements will

inspire more students from India to take

up meaningful research careers," said

Amit Dasgupta, UNSW Country Head,

India.

UNSW Engineering has launched

new streams starting February 2020 in

mining engineering, renewable energy

and petroleum engineering, and is in the

process of finalising a new Robotics

stream to be available from early 2020.

"Students in India will find these courses

exciting. We would like more meritorious

students from the region to apply

for the 'Future of Change' scholarships,

available exclusively to the Indian students,"

Dasgupta added.


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Militants hurl petrol bomb at

school in Shopian, J&K

Srinagar : Suspected militants on Friday

evening hurled petrol bomb at a school building

in

S o u t h

Kashmir's

Shopian

district.

Police

said milit

a n t s

hurled

petrol

bomb at a

school

building in Kundalan village in Shopian district

on Friday. The school is designated as an

examination centre for the ongoing 10th board

exam.

Police said some damage has been caused

to the school office in the incident and resulting

fire was immediately put out.

'Pak to spend Kartarpur income

on Sikh community, shrines'

Islamabad : Pakistan will spend the revenue

generated by the Kartarpur pilgrimage on

the welfare of the Sikh community and renovation

of their holy sites, officials said. Senior

government officials said that Pakistan does

not intend to make money from the Sikh pilgrims

but contribute to their welfare, The

Nation reported on Friday. "Yes, there will be

some income but we don't want to use that

money for projects other than those of the

Sikhs themselves.

The money will be used to renovate their

worship places and their holy historical sites,"

said one official. Another official said the government

will even add more money to the

income generated from the Kartarpur pilgrimage

for improved facilities in the corridor to be

opened next weekend. Pakistan is expected to

earn up to $365,00,000 annually from pilgrims

visiting the holy Darbar Sahib in

Kartarpur, the final resting place of Guru

Nanak Dev. Pakistani Prime Minister Imran

Khan will inaugurate the Kartarpur corridor

on November 9.

Radio Kashmir renamed

All India Radio

Srinagar : With the historic Thursday seeing

two new Union Territories of Jammu and

Kashmir and Ladakh come into being, putting

into effect the reorganisation of the erstwhile

state, radio stations too have been renamed.

Radio Station situated in Jammu is

renamed as the All India Radio, Jammu. While

stations in Srinagar and Leh have also been

renamed as the All India Radio, Srinagar and

All India Radio Leh, respectively.

The implementation of the Jammu and

Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, which got

President's assent on August 9, means the special

status enjoyed by Jammu and Kashmir

under Article 370 comes to an end after 72

years and has come into effect at 12 a.m. last

night. As per the Act, the respective UTs will

have Lieutenant Governor as administrator

who will be appointed by the President of

India. The tenure will be determined by the

President.

Hong Kong : A Hong Kong

court on Friday issued a temporary

injunction to block messages inciting

violence on popular instant messaging

applications like Telegram

and online forum LIHKG, aimed at

minimizing the risk of violent clashes

which have increased over the

past 21 weeks of anti-government

protests in the city High Court

Judge Russell Coleman granted the

injunction applied for by the city's

justice department to prevent citizens

from "wilfully disseminating,

circulating, publishing or republishing"

any material that "promotes,

encourages or incites the use or

threat of violence", reports Efe

news. Local media reports have said

that messages inciting violence

against the police were circulated on

these popular apps but do not specify

whether violent demonstrators or

ASIA

infiltrators among them have been

behind them.

The injunction will be in effect

until November 15, when a formal

hearing for the application could

lead to an extension.

"The temporary injunction sets

an extremely dangerous precedent

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

HK court orders ban on online

messages inciting violence

US hits out at China over the

Dalai Lama, PRAISES INDIA

Washington : As

China protested the

meeting between a senior

US diplomat and the

Dalai Lama in

Dharamsala in India,

Washington emphasized

on the "enduring US

support for the Tibetan

people" and praised

India's "extraordinary generosity" in supporting

the Tibetans' religious freedom. US

Ambassador at Large for International

Religious Freedom Sam Brownback met the

Dalai Lama in Dharmshala on Monday.

Alice G. Wells, Acting Assistant Secretary

of State, Bureau of South and Central Asia, in

tweets said: "@IRF_Ambassador's meeting

with His Holiness in Dharamsala emphasizes

enduring U.S. support for the Tibetan people.

India has greatly supported Tibetan religious

freedom, and the U.S. stands in deep admiration

of India's extraordinary generosity."

On the issue of a successor to the Dalai

Lama, and China's stand on it, she said: "The

Chinese Communist Party claim that Dalai

Lama's succession "must comply with Chinese

laws and regulations" is meritless. Tibetan

communities, like all faith communities,

should be able to select, educate, & venerate

their religious leaders without government

interference. AGW". The Chinese Foreign

Ministry, reacting to Brownback's visit, said on

Tuesday: "We urge the US official to stop contacting

the Dalai Lama clique, making irresponsible

remarks and using

Tibet-related issues to interfere

in China's internal

affairs.

Chinese Foreign Ministry

spokesperson, Geng Shuang

said that Brownback's

remarks violated the US'

commitment to recognise

Tibet as part of China and not

support aTibet secession'. On a successor to

the Dalai Lama, Geng said the process "should

follow (Chinese) national laws and regulations,

religious rituals and historical conventions".Brownback,

during his meeting with the

Tibetan spiritual leader in Dharamsala, said the

role of picking a successor to the Dalai Lama

belongs to the Tibetan Buddhist system, the

Dalai Lama, and other Tibetan leaders. "It does

not belong to anybody else, not any government

or any entity", he is quoted as saying.

There have been concerns over the health of

the 84-year-old Dalai Lama. Brownback had

also called on China to release the Dalai Lamaappointed

Panchen Lama Gedhun Choekyi

Nyima, whose whereabouts are not known.

"We call on the (People's Republic of China)

government to release immediately the

Tibetan-recognised Panchen Lama Gedhun

Choekyi Nyima or share the truth about his

fate with the world," Brownback said. The

Panchen Lama is regarded in Tibetan Buddhist

hierarchy as second most important after the

Dalai Lama. China has appointed a six-yearold

boy as the Panchen Lama.

5-phase poll in Jharkhand from Nov 30, result on Dec 23

New Delhi : The Election

Commission of India on Friday

announced a 5-phase poll for

Jharkhand Assembly election

from November 30. While date

of polling for first phase is

November 30, second phase

polling will take place on

December 7. The third, fourth

and fifth phases of polling will take place on

December 12, 16 and 19, respectively.

Counting of votes will be taken up on

December 23, Chief Election Commissioner

Sunil Arora announced

on Friday.

In Jharkhand, Chief

Minister Raghubar Dasled

BJP is hoping to

retain power in the state.

In 2014, while the BJP

won 37 seats, its ally All

Jharkhand Students

Union (AJSU) won five. The combined tally

was enough for the National Democratic

Alliance (NDA) to cross the majority mark of

41 in the 81-member Assembly.

3

for introducing internet censorship

of online speech similar to the Great

Firewall of China" and "is a serious

breach of citizens' freedom of

expression and Hong Kong's supposed

free flow of information",

Hong Kong lawmaker Charles Mok

said. Mok told Hong Kong broadcaster

RTHK that this selective ban

"would put Hong Kong's economy

and in particular its innovation and

technology industries in a precarious

position".

The legislator also expressed

concern about the use of such regulations

that bypass the local parliament

instead of opting for the standard

legal procedures. The Hong

Kong protests, which have been

drawing massive crowds since June

following a contentious proposed

extradition law, have mutated into a

movement that seeks to improve the

democratic mechanisms that govern

Hong Kong and safeguard - or

expand - the region's partial autonomy

from Beijing. However, some

demonstrators have opted for more

radical tactics than peaceful civil

disobedience and violent clashes

with the police have been frequent.

Nepal PM's health issues raise

concerns over governance

Kathmandu : The health condition of Nepal Prime

Minister K.P.

Sharma Oli,

who was hospitalised

earlier

this week, has

raised questions

about his fitness

to govern the

Himalayan

nation.

Ever since

Oli, 67, was

admitted to the

Grande International Hospital here on Wednesday

morning, little information has been provided by the

government authorities. But on Thursday, a doctor

who has been monitoring Oli's health told The

Kathmandu Post that the Prime Minister had undergone

a second procedure for urethral dilation on

Wednesday. The doctor also confirmed that Oli had

undergone two rounds of dialysis during his stay at

Grande, despite much speculation and a lack of information

from officials and attending doctors. On

Wednesday evening, a brief statement issued by Dibya

Singh Shah, Oli's personal physician, and Chakra Raj

Pandey, medical director at the Grande hospital, had

described the Prime Minister's health as "normal".

But on Thursday afternoon, Nepal Communist

Party (NCP) leaders said that Oli had undergone dialysis,

of which there was no indication or information

either from the hospital or Oli's physician.

Later on Thursday, ruling party Co-chair Pushpa

Kamal Dahal, after meeting Oli at the hospital, also

told the media that Oli had undergone dialysis.

"After his second dialysis, the prime minister is

resting," said Dahal. Statements from Oli's aides only

added to the confusion. Kundan Aryal, Oli's press

adviser, said on Wednesday that the Prime Minister

had been taken to the hospital for "a regular health

check-up" despite reports that he had been admitted to

the intensive care unit. Finally, on Thursday evening,

the hospital organised a press conference and Pandey

confirmed that Oli had undergone dialysis, but stopped

short of divulging any more information, The

Kathmandu Post reported.

Oli is functioning with just one working kidney that

was transplanted 12 years ago in 2007 at India's Apollo

Hospital. This is not the first time Oli's team has tried

to shroud his health condition. In August, Oli left for

Singapore again to undergo plasmapheresis, a process

that filters the blood and removes antibodies, a necessary

procedure for someone who has a transplanted

organ.


4

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 ASIA

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

The festival season is not

over yet now. Something is

today and will continue for next

six days till the Chhath comes.

A careful analysis will tell you

how we celebrate male

supremacy during these festivities.

Just a few days before

Diwali, you have Karwachauth

and now in next one or two

days, you have Bhai dooj and

then Chhath too will give you a

glimpse of celebrations for

sons. India is a continent and

therefore will have more festivals

than anybody else. There

is cultural crisis and cultural

hegemony through festivals

too. Patriarchy too is enforced

through them. Now, lots of

researches and narratives to

justify them.

Many people dont want to

celebrate it because they feel

this is not their identity. Others

suffer in continuous confusion

as to what do you say when

some body ‘greet’ you with ‘

Happy Diwali’. Friends are

confused in it. ‘ How do I

answer their happy diwali

greetings when I am not a

Hindu, said a Buddhist friend.

There are number of them who

are now suggesting that there is

a reference to Deepdanostsav

in Buddhism while other suggest

that such festivals dont

exists in Buddhist countries.

Lots of debate should we be

celebrating Hindu festivals or

not or shouldnt we ?

Now, this crisis is not with

Muslims or Christians as they

are clear about their identity

and hence they participate in

Diwali and Holi in the similar

way, as we might participate in

Eid and Christmas. The issue is

so much in our mind that if a

politician greet people ( who is

not expected to celebrate

Diwali), we get disturbed and

blame him as ‘sold out’. I think,

we need to ponder over a few

things on these issues and save

ourselves from tensions and

isolation.

One no festival in India is

celebrated with one narrative

and if you have traveled across

the country and seen how

things are celebrated then you

will find out that most of our

festivals are actually Bahujan

Adivasi festivals and not really

brahmanical as being projected.

The brahmanical forces

hijacked them and build their

own narratives around them

otherwise a God like Shiva can

never be a brahmanical god.

Dusshera festival have different

and diverse celebrations

across the country. In Bengal it

is Kali Puja, in Gujarat it is

Durga Puja, in

the north it is

Ram leela and

among the

Adivasis and

many places, it is remembering

Mahishasura. While, the north

Indians dont eat non vegetarian

food during the Navratris,

Bengalis rejoice it. Similarly,

Dipwali is not celebrated in the

same way. In many places in

Maharashtra Diwali is people’s

wish to have ‘ Bali ka raj’.

Most of the festivals had local

cultural practices.

Celebrate or not :

WHOSE FESTIVALS

ARE THEY ?

While people may practice

same religion, it is not necessary

their festivals and cultural

practices are same. Islam and

Christianity too have these

diversities according to regions

and languages. In India,

because all the non Muslims

and Non Christians are termed

as Hindus hence we confuse

this diversity as Hindu festivals.

Most of our festivals have

relations with seasons or crops,

whether it is Diwali, Makar

Sakranti, Baishakhi, Holi,

Dusshera, Basant Panchami but

all these festivals are celebrated

in diverse ways and narratives.

There are no homogeneous narratives

in relation to this and

therefore we need to be careful

when we analyse them.

The Dhamma Chakra

Pravartan Diwas is celebrated

on October 14th but equally

important is that a huge number

of people remember it on

Dusshera day which is termed

as Ashoka Vijayadashmi day.

Festivals were used by political

leaders for reaching the bigger

masses and it is true that

Hindutva leaders reached it

first. The counter narrative that

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat

social and human rights activist

was built by Dr Baba Saheb

Ambedkar was not repeated by

politicians who swore by his

name.

Every Indian religious

places that has brahmanical

links today, has a Buddhist or

Jain past. Dig any place and

you will find it. Similarly,

every brahmanical festival

today is somewhere a Buddhist

past too. The bigger reality is

that diyas and lighting of lamp

was a common way of celebration

in the past the only thing is

the narratives. It is important

for all of us to delink ourselves

with all the brahmanical narratives

and rituals of these festivities

by completely rejecting

them and celebrate them in a

much more rational and egalitarian

way.

Even if you dont want to celebrate

it there is nothing wrong.

People like us move out of

Delhi and be with communities

we love, share our happiness

with them, enjoy moments with

your near dear ones.

Brahmanism have destroyed

the good spirit of the festivals.

Today Diwali Dusshera and

Holi impact our environment

more than anything else but

now the Banias too build up the

narratives with the help of

brahmins and you see the vulgar

display of wealth during

this period. All the campaign in

the name of swachch Bharat

a n d

clean

India

i s

brought to naught by the same

elite which happily pose with a

‘glossy’ ‘jhadu’ in their hand.

I know Delhi must have

become a gas chamber today

and our ‘messiahs’ will be

quiet. he wont speak on this

biggest non-sense that we do.

He he wont speak against how

all these festivals are choking

our lonely planet.

No festival should be

allowed to destroy our lonely

planet. We cant have celebrations

decided by the market

today.

Protection of environment as

well as health is more important.

Destruction of environment

in the name of ‘celebrations’

is ‘unique’ to brahmanical

culture of India. It is time

we wake up, reject these dangerous

practices and enjoy festivities

without bringing God

and god-men in between.

Celebrate festivals without

Gods and their rituals and I can

say, you will able to protect

nature and human race as well.

Vidya Bhushan Rawat is a

social and human rights

activist. He blogs at

www.manukhsi.blogspot.com

twitter @freetohumanity

Email: vbrawat@gmail.com


www.theasianindependent.co.uk

NEWS

House votes to authorise, open

up Trump impeachment process

New York : A politically-fractured

House of Representatives voted on

Thursday to authorise and open up the

impeachment hearings against President

Donald Trump, meeting a demand by him

and the Republicans. The resolution that

also set up the framework for the impeachment

sailed through the House where the

Democrats have a majority and the move

was proposed by Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The votes, mostly along party lines,

were 232 for the resolution and 196

against. Only two Democrats joined the

Republican in voting against it. Although

the Republicans had demanded open hearings

and their increased participation, they

opposed the resolution because it did not

meet all their demands. Their attempt to

amend the resolution was earlier defeated.

A group of Republican members of

Congress last week barged into the underground

chamber where the secret hearings

were held and demanded to be allowed to

participate to highlight their opposition to

the secret proceedings.

They left after hours of a dharna-style

protest and the hearings started about five

hours late in secret.

Pelosi, who presided over the voting on

Thursday, appealed for support saying: "It's

about the truth. And what is at stake in all

of this is nothing less than our democracy."

She said that it was being taken up

solemnly and without any "glee".

As the House took up the resolution,

Trump tweeted: "The Impeachment Hoax

is hurting our Stock Market. The Do

Nothing Democrats don't care!"

Later the White House issued a formal

statement saying: "The Democrats'

unhinged obsession with this illegitimate

impeachment proceeding does not hurt

President Trump; it hurts the American

people." "Speaker Pelosi and the

Democrats have done nothing more than

enshrine unacceptable violations of due

process into House rules," it added, accusing

them of "wasting" time instead of taking

up important issues facing the nation.

This is only the third time an impeachment

process has been launched.

Then Presidents Andrew Jackson in

1868 and Bill Clinton in 1998 were

impeached but the Senate did not convict

them. Former President Richard Nixon

resigned before the impeachment process

could begin. The House Intelligence

Committee will hold the first set of hearings

under its chair, Adam Schiff, and produce

a report for the Judiciary Committee,

which will have the final say in drawing up

the charges against Trump in what is

known as Articles of Impeachment. After

the full House votes to approve the Articles

of Impeachment with a simple majority,

the Senate will hold a formal trial presided

over by Supreme Court Chief Justice John

Roberts on the charges.

Two-thirds of the 100 Senators will have

to vote to convict the President and remove

him from office. As of now, it seems

unlikely that there will be that many Senate

votes for impeachment, making the process

nothing more than a political catharsis.

Nominally the proposed impeachment

procedures give the Republicans some

rights in the conduct of the proceedings to

assuage their complaints about being sidelined.

The Republican Party leaders, David

Nunes on the Intelligence Committee and

Dough Collins on the Judiciary Committee

will have the right to call witnesses, but the

chairs can object and call for a committee

vote, where there is a Democratic majority.

CNN quoted Republican Representative

Greg Walden as complaining: "It is still not

set up as a fair process" because "the

Democrats call all the shots." Jim

McGovern, the chair of the Rules

Committee that finalised the draft resolution

that set out the procedures, dismissed

the Republican concerns, saying, according

to CNN: "Their sole mission is to circle

the wagons around Donald Trump. They're

not interested in the truth." Trump's

lawyers will be allowed to participate in

the Judiciary Committee's proceedings by

submitting evidence and cross-examining

witnesses. But if Trump prevents witnesses

from appearing before it or refuses requests

for documents, his lawyers will not be

allowed to continue examining witnesses.

Only the chair and the Republican

leader - and/or their lawyers - on the panel

will first question witnesses for 45 minutes

each and other members can examine them

for a limited time.

Pelosi had resisted having the full

House vote on impeachment or have the

proceedings in the open but finally gave in.

The vote undercuts Trump's excuse to

not allow witnesses or to provide documents

to the inquiry because he said the

House had not approved it. It also shuts

down complaints about the secrecy, which

gave the Democrats an upper hand through

selective leaks. It was not clear when the

open hearings will begin. The House has a

week of recess next week, during which

the secret inquiry may be wound up to pave

the way for open hearings. A key figure in

the White House Drama, John Bolton, who

was fired by Trump as the National

Security Adviser and whose name has figured

in some of the testimonies, has been

asked to appear before the inquiry next

week. If the open hearings end up delaying

the final impeachment vote till the end of

this year or beyond, they could create problems

for the Democratic Party's process of

selecting its candidate to run against

Trump. The primaries and caucuses that

determine the support for candidates at the

state level leading up to the convention

start in early February.

If the impeachment trial in the Senate

overlaps this period, it could be a distraction

and also interfere with the campaigns

of candidates like Elizabeth Warren and

Kamala Harris who are Senators.

Meanwhile, another important issue, the

continued funding of the government,

looms next month while the House will be

grappling with impeachment. The funding

ends on November 21 and if Congress does

not pass the legislation authorising the

spending or it Trump doesn't sign it, government

operations will shut down, except

for the most essential ones. A 35-day shutdown

occurred between December last

year and January when Trump refused to

approve the budget without allocation for

his border wall and most federal workers

were temporarily laid off and services were

curtailed. As Pelosi stood firm, Trump

compromised.

Currently, the government is being run

on a temporary measure under what is

known as a continuing resolution by

Congress to provide interim funding.

Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer

warned that Trump may create another

shutdown to divert attention from the

impeachment. "I am increasingly worried

that President Trump may want to shut

down the government again because of

impeachment, an impeachment inquiry. He

always wants to create diversions," he said.

IS names Abu Ibrahim al-Quraishi as its new leader

Cairo : The Islamic State terror organisation

on Thursday named Abu Ibrahim al-

Quraishi as its new leader after it confirmed

the death of Abu Bak al-Baghdadi

who was killed in a US raid in northern

Syria. A spokesperson for the terror organisation,

Abu Hasan Al Mohager, was also

killed, the group said in a voice message on

Telegram, Efe news reported. United States

President Donald Trump announced that

Baghdadi was killed in a military raid that

took place on Sunday in Syria's Idlib

province.

The message did not provide further

details about the circumstances of their

deaths. Addressing the United States, the

spokesperson said: "Do not be thrilled with

the death of Baghdadi. Do not forget the

death you have suffered at his hands."

"Your destiny is controlled by a stupid

elder who changes his mind overnight," the

spokesperson added. Baghdadi became one

of the world's most-wanted terrorist leaders

when he proclaimed the Islamic State terror

organisation's so-called caliphate from

a pulpit of the Great Mosque of al-Nuri in

the Iraqi city of Mosul in 2014.

At that time, IS had conquered half of

Syria and around a third of Iraq.

It had under its control not only the historic

city of Mosul, where it filled a power

vacuum left by an Iraqi army in retreat, but

also Raqqa across the border in Syria.

Five years later, the so-called caliphate

all but collapsed when US-backed Kurdish

militias seized its last outpost in southeast

Syria in March. Baghdadi was a ruthless

leader who oversaw the murder of thousands

of civilians. He was erroneously

reported dead on several previous occasions.

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

5

Bengal workers killing 'pre-planned',

demand probe: Mamata

Kolkata : Describing the killings of five workers from her state

in the Kashmir Valley as being "preplanned

and brutal", West Bengal

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on

Thursday demanded a "comprehensive

inquiry" into the incident.

Five workers from Bengal were

shot dead by terrorists at Katrasoo

village of Kulgam district on

Tuesday evening.

"Our workers who had gone there,

had gone there in search of jobs.

They were preparing to come back.

But the way they have been murdered

brutally, it is a dangerous incident.

"I think it is a pre-planned brutal murder," she told mediapersons

here. Banerjee wondered how the incident could take place in

a situation where there are no political activities, the press cannot

move freely, and even MPs are not permitted to go there.

"Now there are no political activities there. The press cannot

move freely. No MP can go there. So if some people had gone for

work and were preparing to come back, what was the need to murder

them?" she asked. Banerjee also pointed out that the incident

happened on the day the European MPs' delegation arrived in

India. "They also have not liked the incident. These sort of incidents

give a bad name to the country. Whatever has happened is

not right. There has to be a comprehensive inquiry," she added.

Inflation, not Kashmir biggest

issue in Pakistan: Survey

Islamabad : Pakistan's state of economy and not Kashmir is the

biggest cause of worry for a vast

majority of Pakistanis, a new survey

has revealed. The survey, conducted

in four provinces of Pakistan by

Gallup-Gilani Pakistan, has found

that 53 per cent of Pakistanis are worried

about inflation, 23 per cent said

unemployment was a major problem,

while four per cent of the people

identified corruption as the major

problem, the survey said. Of the 1,200 Pakistanis surveyed, only 8

per cent considered Kashmir as the biggest issue of Pakistan.

The issue of Kashmir ranked third, after inflation and unemployment

in Pakistan, but above local matters such as water crisis,

corruption and political instability.

Interestingly, Pakistan's political parties have always harped on

the Kashmir issue, which they say is close to their heart. But, if the

survey is to be believed, the people seem to care less about

Kashmir. The survey took place over a period of two weeks from

October 7 to October 20. The sample size of the survey comprised

men and women in urban and rural areas in all four provinces of

Pakistan - Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan and North-West Frontier

Province. Gallup Pakistan is the Pakistani affiliate of Gallup

International.

Pak train fire: Eyewitnesses say

short-circuit caused fire

Islamabad : A passenger of Tezgam train has disputed the

statements of Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed that the

incident took place due to gas cylinders carried by Tablighi Jamaat

members. In a video that went viral, the eyewitness claimed that

the fire could not be attributed to the gas cylinder blast as all the

cylinders were emptied at the station.

The fire broke out in the AC sleeper where the cylinders were

not allowed, he said adding that they were told by railway personnel

that it was infact due to a short circuit in the ceiling fan, the

Pakistani media reported. He claimed the fan had not been

repaired for the past four days. The eye witness added, there were

no fire extinguishers in the carriages and rejected the railways

minster's statement that tableeghi jamaat passengers were behind

the incident. At least 73 people were killed and dozens wounded

after a passenger train erupted in flames in central Pakistan on

Thursday enroute to Rawalpindi from Karachi.


6 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 ASIA

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

Canadian Elections have given numerous

message to Indian People as well as our politicians

Welcome Back Justin Trudeau

The Canadian citizens must be congratulated

for returning liberals headed

by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau without

an absolute majority. He will need

the support from other parties but the

dangers of Conservative party returning

to power are out of question now. In the

338 members Parliament, the Liberals

got reduced fro 184 to 157 though the

opposition conservative party increased

its seats from 99 to 121 but still far short

of the half way mark.

In the over all vote percentage conservatives

were 34.4% while the liberals

got 33.1% and the new democratic party

headed by Mr Jagmeet Singh which got

15.9% vote share and 24 seats. Singh

was projected as the Prime Ministerial

candidates and has support of a large

number of the minorities, immigrants

and other progressive. This result also

brought 98 women parliamentarian

which constitute about 29% of the total

representatives. Last time it was 88

members.

This time the Canadians have elected

19 members from Indian communities

in which 18 happened to be Sikhs, perhaps

their greatest representation in

power structure anywhere in the world.

In Indian Parliament there are merely 13

as per reports. Last year when Prime

Minister Justin Trudeau visited India, he

joked that he has more ministers from

Sikh community than the government of

India. In fact, he had five Sikh minister

including one member holding the

Ministry of Defense Portfolio. The party

wise break up of these winning Indian

Canadian also reflect a clear trend. 13

were elected on Liberal Party ticket

headed by the Prime minister, 4 by the

Conservative Party and one by the NDP.

Canada’s population is about

3,75,89,262. In terms of size, Canada is

the second biggest country after Russia

and it has a size of 9.9 million square

kilometers. When the government worldover,

particularly in the neighboring

USA were speaking up against the

immigrants and minorities, Canada was

welcoming them with an open arm.

According to data available, Canada

admitted 3,13,580 immigrants from

2018 to 2019.

There was huge campaign against the

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for his

alleged participation and support in

some racist programmes during his student

days but it was clear that the people

of Canada looked at his current track

record and voted him. People of Canada

have delivered a verdict which should

make all of us proud. It did not give a

solid majority to the Liberal party may

be because of their failure on certain

domestic fronts but it supported them.

More over, the growth of the parties like

NDP, suggest that people would support

the voices of minorities and immigrants.

The people of India can learn a lot

from Canada. How this country is welcoming

people from different parts of

the world and how they are putting them

in their power structure. The immigrants

in Canada, the Sikhs or any one are not

mere than century old unlike Muslims

and Christians in this country who are

living more than 700 years and there is

no immigration here that happen to

Western world and yet we are asking

hundreds of questions of loyalty to both

Muslims and Christians here whose

track record in our national building

remain far superior to those who are

enjoying the fruits of power.

Today, we celebrate the victory of

Canadian Indian and if there are ministers,

we feel proud on them but why ?

All of them are Canadian citizens and

they might have migrated several years

back and now dedicated to the constitution

of Canada. Their only relation with

India remain cultural. Can we do the

same if things happened here. Muslims

here are Muslim Indian and Indian

Muslims and have no other loyalty.

None celebrate elsewhere on their victory

except their own constituency.

Every one know about the French

speaking Quebec State of Canada which

speak of its distinct French identity and

talks of more autonomy and yet flourishing

here. None call them anti national

and there is no military presence.

Canada is a shining example of how we

can progress peacefully and in co-existence.

India was an example. We all

have those traits and we had a leadership

who we hate because their building

a plural society was the biggest hindrance

in the way of those who wanted

to get absolute power without any

accountability.

Opposition is not a burden. All those

who seeks votes in the name of minorities

and immigrants are not anti national.

Minorities, immigrants too have

right to express their feeling and ask

question to all in Parliament and must

have representation. Indian media is

running campaign to demolish the

opposition and minorities as well as

marginalised. Canadian have voted in a

very diverse way and perhaps this is the

best way now to run democracy and

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat

social and human rights activist

remain committed to people. With

absolute majorities we are handing over

power to dictators who are never democratic

and misusing the faith of the people

posed in them. The arrogance of

power is allowing them to betray people

and be pygmies of the big industrial

houses. Both the political parties and

Indian media must understand that

diversity is to be celebrated and

enjoyed. Canada is a new country in

comparison to us but it is welcoming

minorities, immigrants and we as an

ancient civilization with a great track

record of multiple-faith working together

and contributing to nation building

are converting our own people as ‘foreigner’

or anti national just because he

does not follow your faith which is sad

and dangerous too. A huge country like

India can not run smoothly by putting a

gun over the head of its minorities and

making them suspect for every anti

national or illegal act. This has to stop.

Learn from the West and Canada particularly

as it engages with minorities and

immigrants and do not treat them anti

national just because they disagree with

the prime minister or ruling party.

We welcome Justin Trudeau again

and hope his policies will strengthen

world peace by increased engagements

with migrants and minorities of all varieties

world over.

Vidya Bhushan Rawat is a social and human rights activist. He

blogs at www.manukhsi.blogspot.com twitter @freetohumanity

Email: vbrawat@gmail.com

Can’t control dengue, pay Rs 50 lakh: Telangana HC

Hyderabad, The Telangana

High Court on Thursday said if

the government failed to control

dengue, it should pay Rs 50 lakh

compensation to the families of

those who died of the disease.

The High Court pulled up the

state authorities for their failure to

control the mosquito menace,

resulting in people dying of

dengue and other mosquito-borne

diseases. A division bench comprising

Chief Justice R.S.

Chauhan and Justice A. Abhishek

Reddy was not satisfied with the

steps listed out by senior government

officials on measures taken

to control the mosquito menace.

On summons by the bench, Chief

Secretary S.K. Joshi, Municipal

Administration Secretary Aravind

Kumar, Greater Hyderabad

Municipal Corporation (GHMC)

commissioner Lokesh Kumar and

superintendent of governmentrun

Fever Hospital Dr Shankar

appeared before the court on

Thursday and briefed it on the

steps taken. The officials

informed the court that municipal

authorities identified 427 points

prone to mosquito breeding and

took the steps to check the menace.

The court, however, observed

that the measures exist only on

paper. It asked officials to visit

Musi River in front of High Court

building to see the situation for

themselves. As the mosquitoes

from the dried river enter into

High Court complex, the judges

remarked that people would not

come to the court if the problem

was not addressed. The bench

also remarked that the IAS officers

were not even reading

newspapers, which carry stories

about problems faced by people.

It observed that it is the duty of

the government and officials to

look after people’s welfare and

when they fail, they should pay

the compensation. For the second

day, the High Court heard

the petitions questioning official

apathy in tackling dengue epidemic

and in curbing mosquito

breeders. The bench asked the

government how the number of

dengue cases rose from 85 in

January to 3,800 in October. A

district court judge from

Khammam succumbed to

dengue while undergoing treatment

at a corporate hospital in

Hyderabad on Monday. The

bench also took note of this case.

It asked the government to set

up a committee headed by the

chief secretary and take steps on

war-footing to control the mosquito

menace.


www.theasianindependent.co.uk

The gruesome murder of Kamlesh

Tiwari reflect the state of law and order

in Uttar Pradesh particularly in the capital

city of Lucknow.

His family alleged that the security

was withdrawn by the state government.

With in few hours, Uttar Pradesh

police claimed that they have resolved

the murder mystery as they claimed that

Gujarat police has arrested three persons

in Surat. Anyway, we don’t comment

on an administrative thing and

would like it to be proved in the court of

law. Since the death of Kamlesh Tiwari,

our channels have started sinister campaign

against Muslims. There is no control

over the filthy language that these

channels and their loudspeakers who

want to divide people and put India on

fire so that they and their masters can

rule on the polarisation of people. How

long will you keep people in perpetual

hatred. Why the murder of an individual,

even if he was most foul mouth, be

blamed on a particular community.

Kamlesh Tiwari’s mother Kusum

Tiwari has alleged that her son was not

murdered by the Muslim murderers but

some Gupta who happened to belong to

the Hindutva group. Mrs Kusum Tiwari

continued on a TV channel that dont

bring Hindu Muslim issue every time.

This murder has nothing to do with

Hindu-Muslim issue. It is purely done

by a person who they are naming but

despite that Uttar Pradesh police has

not arrested the accused person.

We agree that police must investigate

the issue on its own without any

political interference but then the investigations

should look unbiased. What

the police can do it to speak to their

family persons and see why they are

accusing the other person. His mother

is speaking in full senses and seems to

be determined to fight this case and

take it to logical conclusion. This case

may become difficult for the government

to handle unless properly dealt

ASIA

Kamlesh Tiwari’s mother has a right

to be satisfied with the investigations

related to her son’s death

with.

It is good that

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat

social and human rights activist

Muslims did not respond

to Kamlesh Tiwari’s filth in the similar

way he was doing. Today, Hindutva

trolls are abusing and writing things

and trending hatred against Muslims.

The twitter and Facebook who act fast

against free thinkers, human rights

defenders and those who disagree with

this hate politics remain mute to

Hindutva hatemongers who trend

hatred on social media. This has to be

condemned. Social media platforms

must stick to strong norms where

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

7

attempt to sow seeds of division, racial

and caste abuse and slur, religious

hatred must be prohibited. Freedom of

expression is welcome when things are

spoken in a well explained way without

being abusive but these platforms can

not and should not be allowed to abuse

and spread hatred.

The National Broadcasting

Authority of India too should strongly

put its agenda on the erring TV channels.

If the body is unable to discipline

these channels then it must approach

courts and ask for maintaining some

decorum and adhering to constitutional

principles on the TV debates. It must

warn the anchors who have become

Party Spokes person to desist from

doing so. Fact is that we blame social

media but it is the manustream media

which need to be disciplined. Kamlesh

Tiwari’s mother’s strong slap on the face

of an anchor who tried to instigate her in

Hindu Muslim binary, is a big example.

That way, we should appreciate the

stand taken by her. She has a right to get

satisfied with the investigations related

to her son’s death. Who ever is the culprit

must be arrested and the family has

a right to question if they are not satisfied.

It is equally important that media

must not play divisive politics in all this.

The role of the media is to protect

democracy and not to destroy it.

Vidya Bhushan Rawat is a social

and human rights activist. He blogs

at www.manukhsi.blogspot.com

twitter @freetohumanity

Email: vbrawat@gmail.com

The target of $5 Trillion Economy

is Achievable : Pratap Padode

In an exclusive interview with the

Asian Independent UK, Pratap

Padode, Founder & Editor-in-Chief

of Construction World magazine &

Founder & Director, First

Construction Council is confident that

the target of a $5 trillion economy is

achievable in India.

What are your views on the current

situation of the construction

industry in India?

A few years back, India was passing

through policy paralysis, the

measures taken at the central government

level were not enough to boost

up the construction industry. There

was a trust deficit between the

builders & the home buyers. Today,

the construction industry has already

picked up the momentum. Big &

small construction companies are taking

new projects across India. In the

coming years, India will lead the

world in the construction industry

since India has surplus land availability.

The construction of highways,

roads, and tunnels have further

upgraded the connectivity to boost up

trade between the states.

India is facing a lot of shortage of

skilled manpower, what are your

suggestions to the government?

India is a rich country with surplus

manpower. The central government

has established an independent Skill

Development Ministry and allocated

funds to skill manpower. The steps

taken are very effective in skilling

India. There is an urgent need to target

manpower from the states where 70

percent of people live in villages. We

must understand that the world is

changing so the technologies. In order

to compete at the international level,

India needs strong skilled manpower

laced with advanced technologies.

It is often alleged that FDI investment

in India is un-even in the construction

industry, what is your

viewpoint?

India is a vast country having 29

states. It is a fact that foreign investors

tend to look for areas where social &

political unrest is at zero level.

Bengaluru city in Karnataka state is

known as a high-tech hub in India.

Every state of India has a vast potential

for the industry to explore and

invest & build. Frankly speaking, state

governments must take initiatives in

collaboration with First Construction

Council bodies or such bodies to boot

up the construction industry in the

state. I believe, if the state governments

shake hands with such bodies

the sky is the limit. This disparity can

only be removed if strong linkages

between states and various stakeholders

are removed.

You are a Founder &

Director of First

Construction Council, please tell us

more about this.

The idea behind setting up of First

Construction Council in India is to

promote research in the construction

industry. First Construction Council is

a Think Tank body which will coordinate

with all the stakeholders and conduct

primary & secondary research

across India. We have tied up with

DODG, data & Analytics New York

based Industry Insights Research to

conduct various construction industry-related

research in

India in the future. Mr.

Stephen A Jones,

Senior Director of

– Dr. Rahul Kumar, PhD

DODG having more

than three decades of

experience in research

and analysis is going to be a council

partner. By doing so we will be able to

understand the challenges & opportunities

existing in the construction

industry. The findings of such studies

in the future will help the government

of India in formulating sustainable &

viable policies.

What are your viewpoint of

Corporate Social Responsibility?

How you see the role of CSR in

financial inclusion?

India is a democratic country.

Democracy means everyone should

have the right to food, shelter, and

clothing. The role of CSR in India is

very positive. Many multinational

companies in India are promoting talents

through various initiatives. For

example, Reliance Industry has been

supporting sports, schools and transforming

the lives of the underprivileged

children in the country.

According to my view, it is the moral

duty of every multinational company

to help and assist the children of the

underprivileged class.

This is the only way forward to

include all sections of the society

in the mainstream society. Further,

I would like to stress upon that in

order to sustain development for

the future generations in India we

must practice egalitarianism.

Prevailing massive social & economic

inequalities can be removed

only if we welcome & embrace

people belonging to all sections of

the society. Modern India has no place

for gender inequality, social & economic

disabilities.

You said $5 trillion economy target

is achievable, could you please

throw some more light on this

issue?

India is already on the global map.

When I visit countries like the USA,

UK, Canada, Russia, China, or South

Asian countries I find business people

are talking about India so India is on

the right trajectory for growth & prosperity.

For example, India has been

ranked the best country by the global

prosperity ranking for the investment

environment. The government of

India has already announced several

domestic airports for promoting connectivity

between states. New road

highways are being built. New rail

links are built. The Smart Cities projects

have unleashed a new era in India

for the construction industry particularly.

Public-Private partnership initiatives

have opened up the doors for

FDI. Huge funds from the developed

nations & the emerging economies are

coming to India.

If we see at the domestic scenario,

new entrepreneurs, builders, traders,

suppliers & various stakeholders, etc.

are entering into the construction

industry while targeting also 2 tier

cities in India. Banks are disbursing

loans for the projects. Looking at all

these positive signs currently prevailing

in the construction industry I am

confident that the target of a $ 5 trillion

economy is achievable.


8 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 ASIA

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

Shinde elected Sena leader,

heads to meet Maha Guv

Mumbai : The Shiv Sena on Thursday

elected Eknath Shinde as their Legislature

Party leader, and announced their slated

meeting with Maharashtra Governor soon.

Aditya Thackeray proposed Shindes

name for the post and Sunil Prabhu's name

for the post of Chief Whip of the legislature

BJP

party.

The Thackeray junior tweeted: "As an

elected MLA, it was my privilege to propose

the name of @mieknathshinde ji as the

leader of the Shiv Sena Parliamentary Party

for Athe working the legislature. @prabhu_suneel

ji has been elected as chief whip Governor of the "situation".

ever said, the meeting is to "apprise" the

of the party for the legislature." The party is The BJP legislature party met in Mumbai

scheduled to meet Maharashtra Governor on Wednesday afternoon and elected former

Bhagat Singh Koshyari, that has sparked Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis as the

speculations. Sena leader Sanjay Raut, how-

leader of its legislature party. Soon after that,

IOC reports sharp 82.7%

fall in Q2 profit

New Delhi : The country's largest public sector refiner,

Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), on

Thursday reported a 82.7 per cent fall

in its net profit for the second quarter

period of financial year 2019-20 on the

back of slump in refinery margins and

inventory losses.

The company posted a standalone

net profit of Rs 563.42 crore in the

July-September quarter of FY20 as against net profit of

Rs 3,246.93 crore in the same period of the previous year.

"The major reason for the decline in net profit was inventory

loss in Q2 as against inventory gains in the same

period of previous year," IOC Chairman Sanjiv Singh

said. He added that the company recorded an inventory

loss of Rs 1,807 crore in the second quarter period as

opposed to inventory gain of Rs 2,895 crore in the same

period of FY 19.

The company's refinery margins also fell to $1.28 in

Q2 as against refinery margin of $6.79 in the year ago

period. Shares of IOC ended 0.30 points or 0.20 per cent

lower at Rs 146.80 on the BSE.

Delhi HC agrees to hear Facebook's

plea on Ramdev video

New Delhi : The Delhi High Court on Thursday

agreed to hear social

media giant Facebook's

plea, challenging a single-judge

order which

had asked it to remove

video content "on a global

basis" allegedly containing

defamatory allegation

against Yoga guru

Baba Ramdev from its platform. A bench of justices S.

Muralidhar and Talwant Singh said that it will hear arguments

at length on December 7 but refused to pass any

interim order to stay single judge order. Facebook's counsel

and senior advocate Kapil Sibal requested the court to

restrain Ramdev from initiating contempt action against it

till the appeal was pending. Ramdev's counsel assured the

court that he will not initiate any contempt action against

the social media platform till the division bench decides

the matter.

Last week, a single-judge bench of the Delhi High

Court had directed the Facebook to globally remove,

block or disable links to a video containing defamatory

allegations against yoga guru Ramdev.

The court order had come while hearing a plea by

Ramdev seeking global restraint order against Facebook,

Google, its subsidiary YouTube, and Twitter from carrying

content related to a book. On September 29, 2018, the

Delhi High Court restrained the publication and sale of

the book 'Godman to Tycoon: The Untold Story of Baba

Ramdev' until the publisher deletes some defamatory portion

written against Ramdev. The court had observed that

the defamatory portions of the book were being communicated

to the public through the video which was

uploaded on Facebook, Google, YouTube and Twitter.

Mumbai : As much as 14 per cent of Indian

banks payments revenue, or $9 billion, is likely

to be displaced by the growth of digital payments

and competition from non-banks, an Accenture

report said on Thursday.

"With the digital boom as payments become

more instant, invisible and free, banks need to

reinvent themselves to grow customer loyalty,

revenues and profitability," Rishi Aurora, a managing

director at Accenture who leads its financial

services practice in India, said in a statement.

Payments revenue in the country will likely

grow at an annual rate of 10.7 per cent, from

$38 billion in 2019 to more than $70 billion by

2025, said the report titled "Banking Pulse

Survey: Two Ways To Win".

Only banks that change their business models

to adopt the latest technologies and focus on providing

value-added services to customers will

capture a share of the $32 billion in incremental

revenue growth. "To succeed in the post digital

era, banks need to redefine innovation strategies

around scaling technology and adding value to

address the payments challenges," Aurora said.

Digital payments platforms such as Paytm,

Fadnavis asserted, the mandate was for

"grand alliance" of Sena-BJP and the two

will form the government. But Tuesday was

marked with day-long exchange of rhetoric

and counter-rhetoric between the two parties.

First, Sena leader Sanjay Raut alleged the

was "stooping low". Then Chief

Minister Devendra Fadnavis issued a statement

rejecting Shiv Sena's claim of 50-50

formula, which they have been adamant

about.

Later on Tuesday evening, Shiv Sena had

cancelled its meeting with the BJP leadership,

including close aide of Amit Shah,

Bhupendra Yadav, to iron out differences. In

2014, the BJP formed a government without

Sena and with outside support of NCP. There

is a sense of deja vu in Maharashtra politics.

Indian banks risk losing $9bn

revenue to e-wallets by 2025

Parties explore tieups for Jharkhand polls

Ranchi : With Jharkhand Assembly elections

only two months away, political parties have started

exploring poll tie-ups, tightening loose ends and

connecting with workers. While the Congress and

the Jharkhand Mukti

Morcha (JMM) have

decided to contest the

elections jointly, they

are yet to finalise seatsharing

formula.

However, the Congress

has agreed to be the

junior partner to the

JMM, according to

state Congress chief

Rameshwar Oraon.

On the alliance, Oraon said, "Everything is predecided,

and the grand alliance will be announced

soon." The main goal was to dislodge the Bharatiya

Janata Party (BJP) from power in the state, he

added. According to sources, the JMM will contest

44 seats, the Congress 27 and the rest will go to

other ally partners. Of this, five seats each may go to

the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and the Left parties.

Jharkhand has a 81-member House. Former Chief

Minister Babulal Marandi's Jharkhand Vikas

Morcha - Prajatantrik (JVM-P) is unlikely to join

the grand alliance. Marandi told IANS any decision

would be taken only after talks with the party workers.

In the next five days,

the party leaders would go

door-to door to gauge public

views, he added.

The RJD leaders too

are not satisfied with five

seats. State RJD chief

Abhay Kumar Singh told

IANS, we would like to

contest more seats. The

partners of the grand

alliance were yet to meet

and discuss the seat-sharing, he added. Sources said

trust deficit was the biggest issue in the opposition

alliance. No one was sure of the partner parties preor

post-poll stances and each was insisting on larger

share of seat, they added.

The opposition parties might have different

coalitions in Jharkhand, but to expect a 'mahagathbandhan'

was meaningless, said political critic and

senior journalist Baijnath Mishra.

ICCR to hold international

youth seminar on Sikhism

New Delhi : In a bid to spread the teachings of

Guru Nanak Dev, the Indian Council for Cultural

Relations (ICCR) will organise an international

youth seminar on teachings of the first Sikh guru

and Sikhism on November 6. Addressing a press

conference here, ICCR President Vinay

Sahasrabuddhe said, "On the 550th birth anniversary

of Guru Nanak Devji, the ICCR is planning to

hold an international youth seminar to spread his

teachings and Sikhism's contribution in universal

well being." He said the seminar will be organised on November 6 at the

Pravasi Bhartiya Kendra where about 35-40 international Sikh youth from

US, UK, Malaysia, Thailand, Canada, Italy, Australia, Netherlands,

Singapore and South Africa will participate. Sahasrabuddhe said that

besides the foreign Sikh youths, about 20 Indian Sikh youths will also participate

in the seminar. He said the ICCR has written to the Delhi

University and Jawaharlal Nehru University to send their students to

participate in the international seminar. Sahasrabuddhe said that the foreign

Sikh youths will also meet President Ram Nath Kovind before

leaving for the three day 'Takhat Darshan' from November 7-9. "The

foreign Sikh youths will meet the President on November 6 and then

leave for the three-day Takhat Darshan of Patna Sahib, Golden Temple

in Amritsar and Hazur Saheb in Maharashtra's Nanded," he said.

Google Pay and PhonePe are quite popular in

India. Their adoption surged dramatically after

the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes

in November last year. The report is based on a

revenue-risk analysis model that Accenture

developed to measure trends in how consumers

pay and projected changes in merchant behaviour,

technology and regulation. The research is

complemented by a survey of 240 payments

executives at banks across 22 countries to determine

how they plan to mitigate and capitalise on

the disruption in payments to grow customer loyalty,

revenues and profitability. The report

showed that global payments revenue in all markets

surveyed will likely grow to more than $2

trillion by 2025, creating a $500 billion opportunity

for banks in those countries. Over the next

six years, banks will face further pressure on

income from card transactions and fees, with

free payments putting 8.4 per cent of payments

revenue at risk in India, said the report. In addition,

competition from non-banks in invisible

payments -- where payments are completed in a

‘virtual wallet' on a mobile app or device -- will

put 3.6 per cent of bank revenues at risk. Card

displacement by instant payments, where funds

are settled and transferred in real-time and banks

make little to no interest, is projected to put an

additional two per cent of payment revenues at

risk. The research found that the industry is

aware of the challenges posed by new technologies

in payments.

More than two-thirds of the banking executives

surveyed in all markets agree that payments

are becoming free.

Lawyer shot dead

in Prayagraj

Prayagraj : A lawyer, practising in

Prayagraj District

Court was shot

dead by unidentified

assailants on

Thursday.

The deceased

was identified as

Idrees Ali and he has been practicing in the

district court for the last one year.

Mohammad Ali, elder brother of the

deceased said he was shot dead in his

house early in the day.

"He was a very polite man, aged around

28-30 years old. We got the information

about his murder and informed the police

about it. The administration has assured his

family of all possible assistance," said

Rakesh Tiwari, the former president of the

District Bar Association. Superintendent of

Police, City, Brijesh Kumar Srivastava,

told reporters that the murder was being

investigated and there was no information

about any possible motive.


www.theasianindependent.co.uk ASIA 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 9

The poll results of the Haryana and

Maharashtra Assembly as well as bypolls

in about 52 constituencies across

the country are out and wronged the

pollsters as well as the arrogant

‘spokespersons’ on the Manustream

media who were out and out ‘determined’

to ‘decimate’ the opposition. In

any democracy, if we wish to strengthen

it, people must ensure that a healthy

opposition remains in the Parliament

and Assemblies to make the government

accountable. In the absence of

opposition, media would have done the

job as it is doing so powerfully in the

United States as well as other Western

world but unlike them, the casteist

Manustream media has become one of

the ‘specialised’ branches of the Sangh

Parivar whose job is to spread ‘fakenews’

and have debate based on it, distort

facts and deny people their right to

correct information.

I have always mentioned that no

party, whatever, its strength are, can

win elections on the basis of the propagandist

media because, it is running the

show on the guidelines of RSS ideologues

and therefore has no time to send

to reporters to the ground to get a feel.

In fact, reporters who go to the ground,

is not as a journalist whose job should

be to remain impartial and probing particularly

to the deeds of the ruling party,

our media probe the ‘misdeeds’ of the

opposition and if any one challenge

them or ask accountability from them,

they ‘lynch’ them during their ‘prime

time’ ‘puppet show’. Most of them

were doing more than what can be

afforded at ‘national channels’. They

had pre-election surveys and spent lots

of time in their studios to abuse the

opposition, to divide them, confuse

them. Every one of them had given verdict

to finish the opposition. ‘Gandhis

are done’. ‘Opposition wiped out’. Not

satisfied with the surveys, there was a

‘surgical strike’ too to ensure India-

Pakistan binary remained in the news

and big ‘experts’ continue to do their

‘nationalistic’ work on TV. They won’t

wait for the dead line of the Election

Commission and would do everything

to influence the voters. As the election

time was over, all of them started again

with their ‘exit’ polls with their puppets

speaking what they wish to deny people

even right to ‘peace’. All of ‘exit’

‘experts’ gave BJP and Shiv Sena virtually

two third majority in Maharashtra

and huge win in Haryana. Based on

their ‘exit’ findings they had already

‘broadcasted’ ‘End of Gandhi era’ and

beginning of Modi 3.0. We don’t know

who suggest these headlines but all

these Sangh Parivar influenced or

blessed party workers masquerading as

journalists are a disgrace in the name of

journalism. One channel goes berserk

as its Exit Poll has got the correct

results. Now, our opinion is that all

these polls should be banned. Either

organize them three month before the

polls or before the ‘ Model Code of

Conduct’ and for the Exit Polls, there is

no need as we can always wait for the

main results. We do you need an Exit

poll when the results are about to come

but then you have huge Satta market

based on speculations and these Exit

Polls are meant for that.

The current results have many takeaways.

The attempt to divert people’s

attention from the issues facing them

and putting them all the time in ‘

national’ perspective will not be useful.

If our political leaders are mature

enough they can easily deflate the

‘national narrative’. BJP wanted to sale

Article 370, Surgical Strike all the time

to both Haryana and Maharashtra but it

ARROGANCE SLAPPED

did not work. Both states have a huge

number of farmers too and their issues

were never addressed by the Prime

Minister, Home Minister and local leaders.

BJP leaders have become arrogant

to shout down the others. A completely

inefficient leader like Manohar Lal

Khattar continue to be chief minister of

Haryana where the Jat discontent with

BJP’s attempt to isolate them was growing.

There was nothing for the chief

minister to show as his ‘achievements’

except for abusing and accusing the

opposition and talking about ‘how great

India was”. Narendra Modi while campaigning

in Haryana ‘assured’ that he

would not allow the Satluj water to flow

in Pakistan despite the known fact that

legally India cannot do this as per the

guidelines of the International River

laws.

In Maharashtra, the BJP was over

confidence of Devendra Fadnavis who

too was harping on national issues.

Prime minister spoke about 370 and

‘challenged’ the opposition to oppose it.

During the elections, as usual, the BJP

sent Enforcement Directorate and IT

officials to

Sharad Pawar,

who at this

moment is the

tallest leader

from Maharashtra. The attempt was to

humiliate Pawar and compel his supporters

to desert him. A large number of

NCP and Congress leaders were made

to resign from their parties and joined

the BJP but the ‘Operation- ED’ fell flat

on the face of the BJP leaders and

Sharad Pawar, as a matured politicians

used it without speaking anything.

Maharashtra leaders of all the political

parties felt an attack on Pawar was an

attack on the ‘identity’ of Maharashtra,

particularly to that of Marathas who

constitute about 30% of the population.

BJP as a party is never known to

speak about the issues of the poor. It has

nothing to explain to people about policies

and governance. Its major focus is

to influence the NRIs and caste Hindus

and the sloganeering it engage in is

about ‘greatness’ of India and a ‘powerful’,

Ram Mandir, Article 370, India-

Pakistan, Hindu Muslamaan. During

the elections these issues were deliberately

raised as Haryana has a large

number of retired as well as serving

army personnel and hence it attracted. It

is not that the issue did not appeal but

cant be the sole issue. Both

Maharashtra and Haryana results have

one thing in common and that is the

anger of the dominant communities in

these two state. Marathas and Jaats

have been with BJP and perhaps

ignored the local issues but this time

perhaps they realized that the BJP while

trying to get their support was also

backstabbing them. Since its inception,

Jaats have been the main political force

in Haryana but BJP has ‘successfully’

put a Punjabi Khatri as chief minister of

the state who is unacceptable to them.

Most of Khattar’s ministers lost election

showing how the people have

given them a resounding slap very

much similar to what happened to the

arrogant ministers of the Devendra

Fadnavis government yet they

would not like to change Khattar

who is RSS pointman in

Haryana. It is not that Indira

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat

social and human rights activist

Gandhi did not wanted strong

leaders, it looks Amit Shah and

Modi don’t want strong regional

leaders to emerge in their party.

Congress was not really in the fray in

both the state. It look party had already

lost. In the political arithmetic in

Haryana, Congress had already lost the

jaat support as it was not seen as standing

with Hooda, the tallest Jaat leader of

the state. Rahul Gandhi’s card of bringing

a Dalit as the leader of the party in

Haryana actually went against the party.

This also shows the caste realities of

our country and how social reforms

can’t happen in the realm of politics.

The Jaats who were already disturb losing

their power, would not side with a

party where they don’t have the leadership

role. Second, Ashok Tanwar was

no match to Hooda’s outreach and the

result is party failed. The late decision

to give Hooda, charge of Haryana along

with Sailja paved the return of the jaat

voters to the party but it may not be

permanent unless a Jaat is at the helm of

the affairs of the party. Jaats have no

love relations with Congress but they

never had a liking for the Sangh Parivar

except the specific efforts of the Sangh

Parivar to woe them in 2014 onwards

that they swayed in the nationalistic

narratives of the BJP as a huge number

of them are in the armed forces. The

fact is that BJP has cleverly reduced the

Jaat political representation in Western

Uttar Pradesh which were its dominant

areas. Also the BJP strategies are cleverly

planned as it had two-three big jaat

groups in Haryana, it did not want to

put its weight on them entirely.

Dushyant Chautala and their other family

members ensured that Jaat voters

don’t reach Congress alone and remain

fragmented much to the benefit of the

BJP.

In Maharashtra, NCP-Congress put a

great show and the

credit goes to Sharad

Pawar who tirelessly

campaigned. The two

parties which are

being blamed for

playing spoilsports

for Congress-NCP in

Maharashtra are

VBA of Prakash

Ambedkar and

AIMIM of Asadduin

Owaisi. VBA and AIMIM had jointly

fought the Lok Sabha election and

secured one Lok Sabha seat. This time,

both broke and while VBA could not

get a single seat, AIMIM got two seats

in Maharashtra and one in Bihar. The

fact is that Muslims are feeling deeply

betrayed from the secular party and

AIMIM and its leader are looking decisive

and well prepared to raise their

issue. Asaduddin Owaisi, has been raising

the economic issues, and that of the

Dalits and farmers. Both the parties are

being blamed for giving 30 odd seats to

BJP as the vote got by these parties was

more than the margin of defeat but the

question is why should these parties be

blamed. Is not it a fact that both got substantial

chunk of vote during Lok Sabha

polls and even then both Congress and

NCP did not seem to be bother too

much about them. We know in politics,

politicians have become hard bargainers

and in that the smaller parties are

proving to be craftier then the bigger

one as they can switch over easily. Both

VBA and AIMIM were ready to talk to

Congress but not really ready with NCP

which is predominantly an upper caste

party. Both NCP and Congress failed

miserably in Maharashtra because they

did not take VBA and AIMIM seriously.

It is well understood that many time

politicians in their attempt to blackmail

and bargain actually go beyond rhetoric.

Most of them judge their political

strength beyond normal and hence a

possible alliance is impossible with

Machiavellian politicians.

India is definitely in the coalition age

and all members will have to judge

themselves honestly to come for an

alliance. Democracy in this country is

not really for the sake of democracy but

representation of communities and

leaders. BJP has woven a better community

alliance everywhere which is

making it successful. Powerful communities

are looking for their share in

power, they are craving for bigger positions.

Marathas and Jats felt left out in

the political structure have switched

alligience because they found powerful

leaders at the helm of top positions in

party. Congress will have to develop

stronger regional leaders added with

strong sense of social justice and minority

representation as in the absence of

all of this, they will never gain trust of

various communities. The defeat of

NDA in Bihar reflect that all is not good

for Nitish Kumar and RJD and other

opposition parties will make it difficult

for him in the coming Assembly polls.

In Uttar Pradesh, Akhilesh Yadav has

proved that he is the better bet to counter

Yogi Adityanath. He needs to build

the Samajwadi Party and get rid of the

middlemen who don’t have any ideological

strength of the party. As far as

BSP is concern, the lesser said about it

the better. Rather than introspecting on

her politics, Ms Mayawati continue to

blame others for her defeat. Kerala is

out of reach of NDA at the moment so

is Tamilnadu.

These results have several messages

for all.

That media will be used to divert

attention and steal the mandate. All the

opposition leaders should boycott

media and may be file a petition in the

Supreme Court for a comprehensive

guideline on media ethics. Pre poll surveys

should only be allowed prior to

election notifications and exit polls

should be completely banned.

Modi and Shah will continue to harp

on ‘nationalistic’ ‘narratives’ with the

help of media. It is not true that their

‘efforts’ have failed. It is true that they

have won despite no factual pro people

works visible prove that people are still

fancied by these narratives including

370 though it wont work fully if there is

a good counter narratives on the massive

economic failures of the government.

The opposition needs to counter

them with local narrative and expose

the lies being spread in the name of

abrogation of 370 and Kashmir.

The bigger parties need to develop

better strategic alliances and honor the

smaller parties. Attempt to discredit

them will only push them towards the

Hindutva. Just blaming political parties

not in alliance with them as B team of

BJP will not work.

The B team argument can easily

work on Congress Party too as it has

failed to prove ideologically that it is

different than BJP. See Page 23


10 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 ASIA

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

India objects to China's

comment on Ladakh

New Delhi : Taking strong

objection to comments made by

China on creation of the Union

Territory of Ladakh, India on

Thursday asked it to refrain from

making statements on its internal

matters just like New Delhi does

not make any remarks on internal

issues of any other country.

Addressing a media briefing

here, External Affairs Ministry

spokesperson Raveesh Kumar

highlighted that China continues

to be in "occupation of a large

tract of area in the Union

Territories of Jammu and

Kashmir and Ladakh" and has

"illegally acquired Indian territories

from Pakistan-occupied-

Kashmir (PoK) under the socalled

China-Pakistan Boundary

Agreement of 1963".

He reiterated India's concern

on the projects in "so-called

China-Pakistan Economic

Corridor (CPEC) which is in the

territory that has been illegally

occupied by Pakistan since

Court notice on

lack of playgrounds

in SHIMLA

1947", in a reference to the parts

of Jammu and Kashmir under

Pakistani occupation.

"We have seen the statement

made by the spokesperson of the

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of

China on the establishment of

the Union Territories of Jammu

and Kashmir and Ladakh. China

is well aware of India's consistent

and clear position on this

issue.

"The matter of reorganization

of the erstwhile State of Jammu

and Kashmir into the Union

Territories of Jammu and

Kashmir and Ladakh is entirely

an internal affair of India. We do

not expect other countries,

including China, to comment on

the matters which are internal to

India, just as India refrains from

commenting on internal issues of

other countries," the spokersperson

said.

Asserting that the Union

Territories of Jammu and

Kashmir and Ladakh are integral

part of India, Kumar said: "We

expect other countries to respect

India's sovereignty and territorial

integrity". Referring to the

boundary question between

India and China, he noted that

the two countries have agreed to

seek a fair, reasonable and mutually-accepted

solution to the

issue through peaceful consultations

on the basis of the political

parameters and guiding principles

that were agreed in 2005.

"This was reiterated also in the

2nd India-China Informal

Summit between Prime Minister

Narendra Modi and President Xi

Jinping in Chennai earlier this

month. In the interim, the two

sides have also agreed to maintain

peace and tranquility in the

border area," Kumar added.

CBDT extends IT returns date

in J&K, Ladakh till Nov 30

New Delhi : The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) on

Thursday extended, till November 30, the date for filing of Income

Tax Returns for the assessees in all categories in newly-created

Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh in view of disruptions

in internet services there.

In an order, the CBDT said that it "further extends due date of filing

of Income tax returns/tax audit reports to 30th November, 2019

in respect of all categories of income tax assessees in the Union

Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and Union Territory of Ladakh who

were/are required to file the income tax returns/tax audit reports..."

It said the extension is being given "on consideration of reports of

disturbances in internet facility in certain areas of Jammu and

Kashmir". The reference to "disturbances" was apparently to the partial

suspension of internet services which continues there.

"It is also clarified that ITRs filed by certain categories of income

tax assessees who were required to file ITRs by 31.08.2019 but have

filed ITRs after 31.08.2019 till the date of issuance of this order shall

be deemed to have filed within the due date... ," the order said.

SC will rule for Babri Masjid,

Muslim body believes

Shimla : The Himachal Pradesh High Court

has issued notice to the Chief Secretary, the

Principal Secretary, the Shimla Deputy

Commissioner and the Municipal Corporation

Commissioner on the issue of lack of playgrounds

in the city.

A Division Bench, comprising Justice

Dharam Chand Chaudhary and Justice Jyotsna

Rewal Dua, issued notices on a petition taken up

suo moto as public interest litigation on a letter

written to the Chief Justice by children of Nabha

Estate, a government locality.

The children wrote the city was getting overcrowded

and more buildings were coming up

squeezing out open space for them to play. The

biggest building in their area, Block No 34, had

been demolished and there the government proposed

to build three-four buildings there leaving

very little open space for children.

New Delhi : The central advisory

council of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH)

has said evidences and witnesses suggest

the Supreme Court will rule in

favour of the Babri Masjid. In a statement,

released here on Thursday, the

JIH's advisory council expressed satisfaction

with the counsels representing

the Muslim side in the Ayodhya title

dispute.

"They put forth claims over the

masjid with facts, evidence and witnesses",

it said. The council also

emphasised on the documentary evidence

to stake rights over the masjid.

Citing the probability of decision

in its favour, the Muslim body said,

"This will enhance the prestige of the

Supreme Court. It will also erase the

stain on India's polity, which it carried

after the demolition of the Babri

Masjid." The council said the entire

world was awaiting the apex court

judgment on the centuries-old dispute.

The JIH council also expressed

concern over Indian economy, exclusion

of nearly 19 lakh people from the

final list of the National Register of

Citizens (NRC) in Assam and the

Union Home Minister's statement that

the NRC would be implemented

across the nation.

The NRC was a drain on the

exchequer, a waste of human

resources, and a harmful thing for the

nation, it said. The council appealed

all citizens, especially Muslims, to

avoid unnecessary fear and anxiety.

"As responsible citizens, they should

update the necessary legal papers and

documents in their possession," it

said.

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It is a fact that politics and crime are

inseparable particularly in India. Soutik

Biswas argues that criminals get elected

not only because many voters are illinformed,

but also for sociopolitical reasons.

According to a report released this

April by the Association for Democratic

Reforms (ADR), a nonprofit that works

on electoral and political reform, a total

of 1,580 Members of Parliament (MPs)

and Member of Legislative Assemblies

(MLAs), or approximately 33 percent of

the legislators in India’s Parliament and

state assemblies, have criminal cases

pending against them.

Gopal Kanda, Chief of Haryana

Lokhit Party defeated his nearest rival

Gokul Setia, an Independent, by a slender

margin of 602. The victory of Gopal

Kanda has raised the eyebrows of the

leaders of National Democratic Party

(NDA) government. His criminal background

infuriated BJP Uma Bharti,

Arun Singh, and many more leaders do

not include Gopal Kanda in the formation

of the government in Haryana. The

argument against Gopal Kanda is that

his criminal background would cause

political damage to the BJP in the forthcoming

local body elections. According

to the Association for Democratic

Reforms (ADR) report 39 percent of

winning candidates in 2019 General

elections of the BJP is of criminal background.

The BJP in the state of Haryana

is trying to kill two birds with one stone.

On one hand, the BJP wants to project

itself as a party with a difference and on

the other hand, the BJP would like to

use Gopal Kanda against Dushyant

Chautala, the Jannayak Janata

Party(JJP) Chief.

No doubt, Gopal Kanda is an experienced

politician as well a rich businessman

of Sirsa. He is currently on the bail

in the suicide case of Geetika Sharma, an

air hostess who worked for his aviation

ASIA

Why GOPAL KANDA is

Untouchable to the BJP

company called

then the leaders like

MDLR Airlines. Due

to his powerful influence

in his constituency,

he won despite

Uma Bharti will never

speak a word in the

public. Since 2014,

many social scientists

negative propaganda

and political

against him. Gopal

Kanda knows very

well the power of

observers blame that

the number of criminals

in the BJP has

money. Tax evasion

increased manifold

case and a threat to

the Income Tax officials

by the Kanda

clique proves that in

since the glue of political

power attracts

them to the BJP.

Narendra Modi and

India nothing is

Amit Shah did not

impossible if you

take any political

have the money and

right political connections.

stand in stopping the

entry of the criminals

We also cannot

into the BJP.

blame the gullible voters who run to vote be any objection by the BJP leaders to The litany is that the BJP rape case

for the known criminals. Indian society, include him in the formation of the government.

Uma Bharti, the BJP woman the top BJP leaders. It is observed that

accused MPs, MLAs are pampered by

at large, has become accustomed to voting

to politicians with criminal background

due to absence of a politician Pragya Singh Thakur, an active member ruling dispensation usually go scot-free.

leader never made any statement against BJP rapists under the patronage of the

with a clean image in the society. of the ABVP and later on joined the Even if they have to stay for some time

Gopal Kanda offered his support to RSS, currently BJP Member

in jail due to media pressure, they

form the BJP government in Haryana of Parliament, accused in

enjoy all comforts in the four

but was rejected by the central the leadership

Malegoan blast. Uma Bharti,

walls of the jail. With the support

of the BJP on the ground that

of the ruling dispensation, the

the BJP`s flagship programme “Betti – Dr. Rahul Kumar, PhD

majority of the criminals get

Bachao, Betti Padhao, shall embolden

social antipathy against the BJP in did not raise objections

tal with medical false reports and

themselves admitted to the hospi-

the state of Haryana.

against Chinmayanand, rape

enjoy all sorts of privileges and

Gopal Kanda after winning assembly case accused; Kuldeep

civic facilities. Conviction in

election claims that he is an RSS man. Sengar, Unnao rape case accused. It all such cases is, comparatively to the

His father was an RSS man. If Gopal shows that the BJP has a double standard.

When it is the case of Brahmins low in India. Bindu, a litigator at

developed nations of the world, is very

Kanda claims that he has close connections

with the RSS then there should not priests or BJP’s own political leaders Alternative Law Forum, nexus being

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

11

formed between the public prosecutor,

the police and the accused that collectively

works against the victim in order

to get the case withdrawn” Bindu said.

“Many public prosecutors are extremely

corrupt and I have seen one take money

to derail the case in front of my

eyes.”The antipathy of the police

administration and patronage of the ruling

dispensation have sent a loud and

clear message to the rape victims at

large that they should not dare to raise

voice against the perpetrators.

Due to nexus between criminals &

politicians, the cleanliness of politics in

India seems beyond redemption. Some

scrupulous Judges in the Honorable

Supreme Court & High Courts are

found exasperated to deal with the

nexus having the patronage of the ruling

dispensation. Responding to such cases,

Sapna Narang, High Court Lawyer, and

activist argues that ‘Nothing will

change unless the Parliament amends

article 102 of the Constitution & provisions

of the People`s Act to disqualify

unworthy candidates.

In contemporary times, the BJP is

having a large number of politicians

with a criminal background. The BJP

cannot ignore Gopal Kanda for a long

time since he has already won the seat.

It is certain that he is going to play a

crucial role in the Haryana State

Assembly. Gopal Kanda is a snake in

the pit of the BJP. Such politicians are

very useful for the BJP to foment communal

violence in the name of religion

to divide and conquer so it is hoped that

wealthy & politically well-connected,

influential Gopal Kanda having a political,

administrative experience shall not

remain untouchable to the BJP in the

coming months. Those who worked day

& night to make Gopal Kanda victorious

in the hope for some perks should

wait patiently.

Jansadharan Exp decorated with Sardar Patel's images

New Delhi : To mark the 144th birth

anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel,

the Indian Railways on Thursday

upgraded the coaches of the

Muzaffarpur-Ahmedabad Jansadharan

weekly express into the LHB coach and

also vinly wrapped it with the contribution

of the Iron Man of the country.

According to the railway ministry

officials, the East Central Railway first

upgraded the rake of the weekly train

from the old ICF coaches to more safer

Linke Hofmann Busch (LHB) coaches.

The ECR also vinyl wrapped the train

showcasing the contribution of Sardar

Patel in uniting India. The train has been

decorated with photographs of important

life events of Sardar Patel and his

important quotes. The Muzaffarpur-

Ahmedabad Jansadharan weekly

express passes through the states of

Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and

Gujarat to spread awareness among the

masses about the role of Sardar Patel in

uniting India. The train will departed

from Muzaffarpur on Thursday at 9.20

p.m. for Ahmedabad.

The Narendra Modi government has

been observing Patel's birth anniversary

as 'Ekta Diwas' or National Unity Day

since 2014. As part of celebrations, various

programmes are being organised

across the country this year, recalling

Sardar Patel's contribution to the unification

of India.Prime Minister Narendra

Modi also attended a special function

organised in Kevadia in Gujarat, where

statue of unity (world's largest statue)

dedicated to Patel is located.

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channel 772.

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12 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 NEWS

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

Veteran CPI leader

Gurudas Dasgupta dead,

Prez, PM mourn

New Delhi : After WhatsApp confirmed

that Indian human rights

activists and journalists were among

those targeted by an Israeli spyware, a

political blame game erupted on

Thursday between the Bharatiya

Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress,

with some leaders demanding a parliamentary

probe into the matter.

"Indian users were among those

contacted by us this week," a

WhatsApp Spokesperson told IANS,

without revealing the numbers or

names of those affected. However,

some individuals came out on their

own on social media and news outlets,

revealing they were among those

affected by the spyware developed by

Israeli cyber intelligence company

NSO Group.

The piece of NSO Group software

called Pegasus allegedly exploited

WhatsApp's video calling system with

installing the spyware via giving

missed calls to snoop on 1,400 select

users globally. "Government of India

is concerned at the breach of the privacy

of citizens of India on the messaging

platform Whatsapp. We have

asked Whatsapp to explain the kind of

breach and what it is doing to safeguard

the privacy of millions of Indian

citizens," tweeted IT Minister Ravi

Shankar Prasad. "Those trying to

Kolkata : Veteran communist

leader and trade unionist

Gurudas Dasgupta, considered a

very capable parliamentarian,

died at his south Kolkata residence

on Thursday after a long

battle with cancer. He was 82.

Dasgupta, Deputy General

Secretary of the Communist

Party of India (CPI), passed away

at 6 a.m. leaving behind his wife,

a daughter and a granddaughter,

family sources said.

"He was admitted to Tata

Medical Centre, where he was on

ventilation also for some time.

On Monday he was released from the hospital

and brought home," party state

Secretary, Swapan Banerjee, told IANS.

President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime

Minister Narendra Modi led the nation in

paying homage to Dasgupta - a three-term

Rajya Sabha member, who was also elected

to the Lok Sabha twice --from Panskura

in 2004 and Ghatal in 2009.

He began his long parliamentary career

following his election to the Upper House

of Parliament in 1985, and made his mark

with his erudition, fearless and articulate

oratory, speaking out with a crusader's zeal

against corruption, capitalism and what he

always termed as the "neo-imperialist policies".

He was twice re-elected to the Rajya

Sabha in 1988 and 1994. Dasgupta lost the

bypoll to the Panskura Lok Sabha constituency

in West Bengal in 2000, but won

the seat in the general elections four years

later as a Left Front-backed candidate.

Dasgupta was one of those parliamentarians

who repeatedly highlighted the

Bofors scandal that came into the public

domain in the late 1980s during the prime

ministerial stint of Rajiv Gandhi. He also

served on the joint parliamentary committees

formed to probe the securities scam

and the 2G spectrum scandal.

One of the tallest leaders of the Indian

trade union movement, Dasgupta served

the All India Trade Union Congress in various

capacities including its General

Secretary and Vice President. "He was one

of those leaders who successfully brought

all trade unions under a common platform

in the interest of the workers. The strong

joint trade union movements that we see

nowadays is the result of that effort," said

Banerjee. Kovind in his message expressed

sadness over Dasgupta's demise and said

he had a aforceful presence in the House.

"A big loss for public life in Bengal and

India. Condolences to his family, colleagues

and well-wishers," the President

said. Modi described Dasgupta

as one of the "most committed

and articulate proponents of his

ideology". "He was a strong

voice in Parliament, whose interventions

were keenly heard

across the political spectrum.

Saddened by his passing away.

May his soul rest in peace," Modi

said on Twitter. West Bengal

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee

said Dasgupta will be remembered

for his contribution to the

nation as a Parliamentarian and

trade union leader. Dasgupta's

body has been kept in a South

Kolkata mortuary, from where it will be

taken on Friday morning to his residence,

AITUC state headquarters and the CPI

state committee headquarters before the

last rites are performed at the Keoratala

crematorium. Born on November 3, 1936,

in Barishal (now in Bangladesh) of undivided

Bengal, Dasgupta was baptised into

politics through the student movement, and

served as the President and General

Secretary of the undivided Bengal

Provincial Students' Federation between

1958 and 1960. He became a Communist

Party of India member in 1952 and was

detained under Defence of India Rules in

1965 and went underground on several

occasions during the Congress rule in West

Bengal. He visited various countries

including Finland, France, Hungary, Italy,

South Africa, the UK and erstwhile Soviet

Union. A prolific writer, Dasgupta was a

regular contributor to several Bengali and

English newspapers.

make political capital out of it need to

be gently reminded about the bugging

incident in the office of the then eminent

Finance Minister Pranab

Mukherjee during UPA regime. Also a

gentle reminder of the spying over the

then Army Chief Gen. V. K. Singh,"

said Prasad. "These are instances of

breach of privacy of highly reputed

individuals, for personal whims and

fancies of a family," he added.

The BJP also dared WhatsApp to

reveal the names of those affected.

The WhatsApp spygate immediately

snowballed into a political controversy,

with several Congress leaders

blaming the BJP of being behind the

WhatsApp snooping. "Modi Govt

caught snooping! Appalling but not

Surprising! After all, BJP Govt 1.

Fought against our right to privacy. 2.

Set up a multi crore Surveillance

Structure until stopped by SC. SC

must take immediate cognisance &

issue notice to BJP Govt," tweeted

Congress Party leader Randeep Singh

Surjewala.

Congress leader Jaiveer Shergill

Kashmir situation can be

resolved only with full respect

for human rights: UN

United Nations : Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is concerned

about the situation in Kashmir

and is clear that it can only be resolved

when human rights is respected, according

to his Deputy Spokesperson Farhan

Haq. Asked by a reporter at the noon

briefing on Thursday about Kashmir

being made into a Union Territory and

losing its flag and Constitution, Haq said

he was reiterating "our basic concerns

that the Secretary-General has previously

expressed, his concerns about the situation in Kashmir".

"We make clear, particularly as the Human Right

Commissioner (Michele Bachelet) has made clear, the situation

in Kashmir can only be solved with full respect for human

rights," he said. Guterres has met with representatives of India

and Pakistan at their request to discuss the situation and he has

appealed to both sides to deal with the situation through dialogue,

he added. At the stroke of midnight on October 31, what

was the state of Jammu and Kashmir was split into two Union

Territories -- (1)Jammu and Kashmir and (2) Ladakh.

This follows the central government's decision in August to

revoke Article 370 of the constitution that gave Kashmir special

status and Parliament passing the Jammu and Kashmir

Reorganisation Act to make the change.

AKSHAY KUMAR TEACHES US

A LESSON IN HUMANITY

Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar’s latest film ‘Housefull

4’ is breaking records at the box office, and he

is basking in the success of the film with his

family. In a tweet posted through his Twitter

account Akshay Kumar shared a ‘life lesson’

that he and his daughter learnt yesterday

morning, thanks to an elderly couple. Whilst

walking in the morning, the father daughter

duo chanced upon the humble home of an

elderly couple and asked for a ‘sip of water’.

In return the elderly couple not only offered

water but fed Akshay Kumar and his daughter

with ‘gur roti’. The actor was impressed by

the couple’s kind gesture and posed for pictures

which were later posted on Twitter. Akshay Kumar wrote

saying ‘Today’s morning walk turned into a life lesson for the

little one. We walked into this kind, old couple’s house for a sip

of water and they made us the most delicious gur-roti. Truly,

being kind costs nothing but means everything!’

WhatsApp confirms Israeli bug snooped on Indians, politics on

tweeted: "1) BJP Govt wanted Aadhar

linked with phone 2) objected to right

to privacy as fundamental right; 3)

20/12/2018 issued Notification authorising

data snooping 4) WhatsApp

snooping thru Israeli Software; Nextcameras

in our Homes in name of

Rashtravaad? Tricks of Bhrasht Jasoos

Party?" Congress Party spokesperson

Sanjay Jha tweeted: "Big Bro is

watching, reading and analysing your

#WhatsApp message".

Facebook-owned WhatsApp has

already sued NSO Group that exploited

its video calling system to snoop on

1,400 select users globally. Those targeted

in India included the human

rights activists who were arrested over

their alleged involvement in the

Bhima-Koregaon Dalit riots near Pune

in January last year and some journalists.

Of 1,400 affected users, over 20

are academics, lawyers, Dalit activists

and journalists from India.

Sidhant Sibal, who is principal

diplomatic and defence correspondent

for WIONews, tweeted: "Here is the

good news. WhatsApp was able to

raise the alarm of hacking and they

promptly took measures--Technical &

Legal. Having being approached by

them, they suggested measures to be

safe online."

According to WhatsApp, the NSO

Group used the flaw to hack into users'

smartphones. "It targeted at least 100

human-rights defenders, journalists

and other members of civil society

across the world," the head of

WhatsApp, Will Cathart, wrote in an

op-ed published by The Washington

Post. In a statement, NSO Group

denied performing any such act, saying

it disputed the allegations and

vowed to "vigorously fight them."

In May, WhatsApp urged its 1.5 billion

users to upgrade the app after discovering

the vulnerability that allowed

a spyware to be installed on users'

phones via the app's phone call function.

NSO limits sales of Pegasus to

state intelligence agencies and others.

The software has the ability to collect

intimate data from a target device.

According to experts, the victims of

the latest WhatsApp spyware attack

may have lost important personal

information including location data

and email content. "The bug can be

exploited based on a decades-old type

of vulnerability - a buffer overflow,"

Carl Leonard, Principal Security

Analyst at cybersecurity company

Forcepoint, told IANS.

"One could assume that an attacker

may seek out bulk contact lists, email

data, location data or other personal

information," Leonard added.


www.theasianindependent.co.uk

HEALTH

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

13

Eating tomatoes could

increase sperm count

LONDON : Tomatoes might

cost you dearly in India nowadays,

but adding one or two in

your daily diet could keep your

virility up and running, according

to researchers. A dietary

compound called Lacto

Lycopene found in tomatoes has

been shown to improve sperm

quality and those took this supplement

had almost 40 per cent

more fast swimming sperm with

improvements to sperm size and

shape. “We didn’t really expect

that at the end of the study, there

would be any difference in the

sperm from men who took the

tablet versus those who took the

placebo. When we decoded the

results, I nearly fell off my

chair,” said Allan Pacey,

Professor of Andrology

Reproduction and Head of the

University of Sheffield’s

Department of Oncology and

Metabolism. The discovery

could transform the outlook for

men with fertility problems as

sperm quality could be improved

with a simple diet supplement

containing LactoLycopene found

in cooked tomatoes.

The 12-week trial designed

by Liz Williams, a leading specialist

in human nutrition at the

University of Sheffield, involved

60 healthy volunteers aged 19-

30. Half took LactoLycopene

supplements and the other half

took an identical placebo

(dummy pills) every day for 12

weeks. Sperm and blood samples

were collected at the beginning

and end of the trial.

The team discovered that it is

possible to increase the proportion

of healthy shaped sperm

(sperm morphology) and boost

‘fast swimming’ sperm by around

40 per cent. Lycopene can be

found in some fruits and vegetables,

but the main source in the

diet is from tomatoes. Lycopene

is a pigment that gives tomatoes

their red colour, but the dietary

Lycopene is poorly absorbed by

the human body, so the compound

used for the trial was a

commercially available formulation

called LactoLycopene;

designed by FutureYou

Cambridge to improve bioavailability.

The improvement in

morphology, the size and shape

of the sperm, was dramatic. This

was the first properly designed

and controlled study of the effect

of LactoLycopene on semen

quality, and it has spurred us to

want to do more work with this

molecule,” explained Pacey.

“We were surprised by the

improvement in sperm quality

shown by the results,” added

Williams in a paper published in

the European Journal of

Nutrition. The next step for

researchers is to repeat the exercise

in men with fertility problems

and see if LactoLycopene

can increase sperm quality for

those men and whether it helps

couples conceive and avoid

invasive fertility treatments.

World Mental Health Day :

EAT HAPPY TO FEEL HAPPY

Feeling down in the dumps,

consumed with anxiety at the

thought of the day ahead or unable

to muster the energy to face the

outside world? Your mood

enhancer is as close as the fridge,

stocked hopefully with “happy

food” like banana and berries, kale

and cabbage. ‘You are what you

eat’ should be an everyday mantra

to keep you healthy in body and

also to keep you fit mentally is the

new thinking in the medical community,

which is increasingly

using “nutritional psychiatry” to

combat a spectrum of ailments.

Consuming a “happy diet” can

help “avoid, treat and prevent”

depression, anxiety, post traumatic

stress disorder (PTSD) and other

mental illnesses, said several medical

consultants and researchers on World

Mental Health Day, observed every year on

October 10.

According to clinical psychologist Preeti

Singh, research in the field of nutritional

psychiatry has shown that optimisation of

micro-nutrients is a “viable way to avoid,

treat and prevent mental illnesses”.

A “happy diet” can comprise leafy vegetables

like kale, cabbage and spinach as

well as broccoli, mushrooms, red/yellow bell

peppers, zucchini, onions, oregano, and vitamin

rich fruits like berries, apples, oranges,

peaches and pears. Proteins can be consumed

in the form of eggs, cheese, chicken and fish,

while nuts, almonds, and pistachios can supply

the micro-nutrients.

The mental health awareness movement

gained momentum in India when Bollywood

actor Deepika Padukone opened up about her

battle with depression in 2015, reassuring

those suffering that it was ‘okay to not feel

okay’. A 2018 study by global medical journal

Lancet noted that people with mental illnesses

accounted for nearly 6.5 per cent of

the Indian population, which, it said, was

likely to increase to 20 per cent in 2020.

Diagnosed with clinical depression, anxiety

and PTSD a few years ago, UK-based

teacher Kasturi Roy Bardhan said she found

relief in medication, face-to-face therapy as

well as a change in diet. She was unable to

find work for a long time and, when she did,

dragging herself to work became an “everyday

battle”, she recalled.“Making sure you are eating

healthy, or food that you generally associate

with positive memories or thoughts makes

you feel better emotionally,” the 29-year-old

said. A September 2019 study conducted by

Australia’s Deakin University revealed that

dietary intervention can reduce depressive

symptoms in individuals more efficiently than

social support, which is known to be helpful

for people with mental health issues.

For the experiment, adults with major

depressive disorders were recruited and randomly

assigned to receive either social support

or support from a clinical dietician over

a three-month period. The results showed

that around 33 per cent of those in the dietary

support group met criteria for remission of

major depression, compared to only 8 per

cent of those in the social support group.

The results of the team’s new study offer

a possible new treatment approach to depression,

one of the world’s most prevalent and

costly medical disorders,” Felice Jacka,

director of Deakin’s Food and Mood Centre,

said in the report. Biologically put, chemicals

produced in the gut also affect the brain,

and by altering the type of food, it is possible

to improve one’s brain health. “Food is generally

associated with just weight

loss and weight gain,” said

Mumbai-based nutritional consultant

Jaydeep Bhuta. He explained

that consumption of certain food

items help release happy hormones

that get processed by the

brain and help improving the

mood. “There’s a saying—‘You

are what you eat’. It simply means

that whatever you eat, directly

affects the structure and function

of your brain and, ultimately your

mood,” Bhuta said.

Banana, for instance, is known

to be a great mood uplifter, added

Delhi-based nutritionist Surbhi

Aggarwal. “It releases the happy

hormone serotonin. So, we can

say, ‘Eating one banana every day,

keeps the mental health issues

away’,” she added. One can keep the happiness

metre high by consuming antioxidantrich

products such as apricots, carrots, sweet

potatoes, kiwis, tomatoes, along with healthy

carbohydrates that can be found in abundance

in legumes. Gurgaon-based theatre

artiste Sakshi Gandhi was prescribed food

rich in iron, and vitamin D to treat her

depression, which was adversely affecting

her day-to-day life. Her sleeping patterns

changed, she would have disturbing thoughts

and completely stopped socialising, she said.

“A change in diet along with exercises was

prescribed. It helped in overall increase of

energy levels, and I stopped feeling exhausted,

both mentally and physically,” she added.

Both medical experts as well as nutritionists

agree that while a balanced diet can

enhance the treatment of mental illnesses, it

is not an alternative to traditional medication.

“Right food can enhance positive effect

of medication but this can’t be an alternative

to psychotropic drugs (medication capable of

affecting the mind, emotions, and behaviour),”

said Shweta Sharma, clinical psychologist

at Gurgaon’s Columbia Asia hospital.

“With the right diet, one can control side

effects and the duration to continue the medication,”

she added. So if you are not feeling

great, talk to friends, exercise, seek professional

help—but also remember to eat happy.

India biggest success

story among malaria

endemic countries

New Delhi : India has been

the biggest success story

amongst malaria endemic

countries in the world in bringing

down malaria cases and

deaths, which have declined by

49.09 per cent and 50.52 per

cent in 2017, respectively, as

compared to 2013.

This was apprised to the

Union Cabinet chaired by

Prime Minister Narendra Modi

in a briefing on the progress

under the National Health

Mission (NHM) and decisions

of the Empowered Programme

Committee and Mission

Steering Group of the NHM.

Apart from the success in

controlling malaria, there has

been acceleration in decline of

Maternal Mortality Ratio

(MMR), and Under Five

Mortality Rate (U5MR) since

the launch of the

NRHM/NHM. At the current

rate of decline, India should

able to reach its SDG target

much before the due year of

2030. As per the progress

report, the Revised National

Tuberculosis Control

Programme (RNTCP) has been

significantly strengthened and

intensified. Due to the intensified

efforts, there is 16 per cent

jump in identification of new

cases in one year. Universal

drug sensitive cases also

increased by 54 per cent.

In 2018, Measles-Rubella

(MR) vaccination drive was conducted

in 17 additional state,

thereby covering 30.50 crore

children till March 2019. In

2018-19, 52,744 Ayushman

Bharat-Health and Wellness

Centress were approved against

which 17,149 HWCs were operationalized

against the target of

15,000. A total of 1.81 lakh

health workers which included

ASHAs, MPHWs, Staff Nurses

and PHC-MOs were trained on

NCDs during 2018-19. The

states have initiated activities to

operationalise the HWCs.

During 2018-19, rotavirus vaccine

(RVV) was introduced in

additional two states. By now, all

the states/UTs are covered with

RVV. In addition, during the

year, pneumococcal conjugated

vaccine (PCV) was expanded to

MP, Haryana and the remaining

districts of Bihar, Rajasthan and

Uttar Pradesh. The National

Viral Hepatitis Control

Programme was approved for

prevention, management and

treatment of Hepatitis to A, B, C

and E and rollout was initiated.

This would benefit an estimated

5 crore patients of hepatitis.


14 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 HEALTH

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

Babies understand counting years earlier than believed

NEW YORK : Babies who are years away

from being able to say 'one', 'two', and 'three' actually

already have a sense of what counting means,

said a new study.

"Research like ours shows that babies actually

have a pretty sophisticated understanding of the

world—they're already trying to make sense of

what adults around them are saying, and that

includes this domain of counting and numbers,"

said the study's senior author Lisa Feigenson from

the Johns Hopkins University in the US.

For the study, published in the journal

Developmental Science, the researchers worked

with 14 and 18-month-old infants.

The babies watched as toys, little dogs or cars,

were hidden in a box that they couldn't see inside

of, but could reach into.

Sometimes the researchers counted each toy

aloud as they dropped them into the box, saying,

'Look! One, two, three, four—four dogs!' Other

times the researchers simply dropped each toy into

the box, saying, 'This, this, this and this—these

dogs'. Without counting, the babies had a hard time

remembering that the box held four things.

They tended to become distracted after the

researchers pulled just one out—as if there was

nothing else to see. But when the toys were counted,

the babies clearly expected more than one to be

pulled from the box. According to the study, they

didn't remember the exact but they did remember

the approximate number.

"When we counted the toys for the babies

before we hid them, the babies were much better at

remembering how many toys there were," said the

study's researcher Jenny Wang, Assistant Professor

at the Rutgers University.

Poor toilet hygiene, not food,

behind superbug spread

London : Poor toilet hygiene, rather than

undercooked chicken or other food, may be

behind the spread of antibiotic-resistant E.

coli bacteria, a study has found.

People harmlessly carry E. coli bacteria in

their gut, as do animals. However, some

strains cause food poisoning whereas others

cause urinary tract infections (UTIs), and

infections after gut surgery, according to the

researchers from the University of East

Anglia (UEA) in the UK.

E. coli has become considerably more

antibiotic resistant over the past 20 years

both in humans and animals, the researchers

said. Particularly important are strains with

'Extended Spectrum Beta-Lactamases

(ESBLs) -- enzymes that destroy many

important penicillin and cephalosporin

antibiotics, they said. However, until now, it

has not been known whether antibioticresistant

E. coli that cause bloodstream

infections are picked up via the food chain,

or passed from person to person.

Researchers showed how they sequenced

the genomes of resistant E. coli from multiple

sources across the UK -- including from

human bloodstream infections, human faeces,

human sewerage, animal slurry and meat

including beef, pork and chicken, and fruit

and salad. The findings, published in The

Lancet Infectious Diseases journal, show

that antibiotic-resistant 'superbug' strains of

E. coli from human blood, faeces and sewerage

samples were similar to one another.

Strain 'ST131' dominated among ESBL-

E. coli from all these human sample types,

the researchers said. They found that resistant

E. coli strains from meat, principally

chicken, cattle and animal slurry were largely

different to those infecting humans.

ST131 was scarcely seen. Instead, strains

ST23, 117 and ST602 dominated, according

to the researchers. They found there was little

crossover of ESBL-E. coli from animals

to humans. The researchers looked at more

than 20,000 faecal samples and around nine

per cent were positive for ESBL-E. coli

across the regions, except for in London,

where the carriage rate was almost double --

at 17 per cent. "We found ESBL-E. coli in 65

per cent of retail chicken samples -- ranging

from just over 40 per cent in Scotland to over

80 per cent in Northwest England," said

David Livermore, from UEA's Norwich

Medical School. "But the strains of resistant

E. coli, were almost entirely different from

the types found in human faeces, sewage and

bloodstream infections," Livermore said.

"Only a very few beef and pork samples

tested positive, and we didn't detect ESBL-E.

coli at all in 400 fruit and vegetable samples -

- many of which were imported to the UK,"

he said. The results show that there are

human-adapted strains of ESBL-E. coli, principally

ST131, which dwell in the gut and

which occasionally -- usually via UTIs -- go

on to cause serious infections. They study

also shows that there are animal strains of

ESBL-E. coli. "But -- and critically -- there's

little crossover between strains from humans,

chickens and cattle. The great majority of

strains of ESBL-E. coli causing human infections

aren't coming from eating chicken, or

anything else in the food chain," David added.

More Indians prefer physical wellbeing over mental: Survey

New Delhi, A majority of Indians,

at 75 per cent, are preoccupied about

their physical wellbeing, over mental

wellbeing at 62 per cent, a survey by

global market reseach agency Ipsos

has found.

The survey, conducted to coincide

with the World Mental Health Day,

found 64 per cent Indians believe that

is equally important to have both,

physical and mental health.

Indians want a clear shift in the

handling and perception of mental illness.

As many as 64 per cent Indians

want the stigma attached with mental

health issues to go and they would prefer

if it was treated like any other illness.

Further, 74 per cent Indians

Thousands of

patients suffer as

doctors strike

work in TN

Chennai, For the second day in succession, thousands of patients

in government hospitals in Tamil Nadu continue to suffer as around

17,000 doctors are on a strike since Friday, demanding pay parity.

Besides pay parity with their counterparts in the Central government,

the doctors are also demanding the implementation of the timebound

promotion, and the non-reduction in the numbers of the doctors

in hospitals.

The striking doctors have said that in patients will not be examined

unless an emergency happens and life saving/medical/surgical

emergencies will be attended to.

Meanwhile, on Friday DMK President M.K. Stalin urged the

Tamil Nadu government and the striking doctors to hold talks and

find a solution as patients were suffering.

exhort adoption of a more tolerant attitude

towards those with mental illness

in the society. The survey also shows a

more positive and empathetic change

coming about towards those with

signs of mental health conditions with

64 per cent urban Indians believe seeing

a mental health specialist or therapist,

as a sign of strength. “Indians are

recognising that being healthy and

well is a combination of both, physical

and mental wellbeing and both work

in tandem. Also mental health issues

are like any other illness and it is

alright to see a doctor for alleviating

symptoms,” says Monica Gangwani,

Executive Director & Country Service

Line Leader, Healthcare, Ipsos India.

The Ipsos survey found that views

around mental health somewhat disjointed

and devoid of clear consensus.

Aout half of Indians polled (52 per

cent), disagree that increased spending

on mental health services is a waste of

money. However, 27 per cent think it

is a wasteful expenditure, while 17 per

cent were neutral, 3 per cent were

undecided and 1 per cent refused to

tender opinion.

As many as 39 per cent Indians

reject exclusion of someone from public

office, on the grounds of mental

health history, while 32 per cent agree

on exclusion, 25 per cent were neutral,

3 per cent undecided and 1 per cent

refused an opinion.


www.theasianindependent.co.uk

HEALTH

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

15

Obesity causes diabetes in women,

KIDNEY DISEASE IN MEN

London : Obesity poses a higher risk of type

2 diabetes in women, and Chronic Obstructive

Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and chronic kidney

disease in men, said a new study from the

University of Oxford. “The study shows just how

harmful carrying excess weight can be to human

health, and that women and men may experience

different diseases as a result,” said the study’s

first author Jenny Censin. To identify additional

causes of death made worse by obesity,

researchers performed an analysis that explores

cause-and-effect relationships using genetic data

and three measures of obesity from 228,466

women and 195,041 men in the UK Biobank.

Their analysis showed that obesity contributes

to a laundry list of health problems including

coronary artery disease, type 1 and 2 diabetes,

stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease,

lung cancer, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease,

chronic liver disease and kidney failure.

While obesity causes type 2 diabetes in both

women and men, women experienced a higher

risk of type 2 diabetes as compared to men, while

men faced a greater risk of chronic obstructive

pulmonary disease and chronic kidney disease.

“Given the compelling evidence of harm that

arises as a consequence of obesity across a broad

range of diseases that result in death, our findings

highlight the critical need for public health

measures to stem the tide of obesity,” said

researcher Michael Holmes, who supervised the

work together with researcher Cecilia Lindgren.

Overall, the study found that obesity causes or

contributes to the majority of the leading causes

of death worldwide that are not linked to the

infectious diseases.

The impact of obesity, however, manifests differently

in men and women.

BAD BREAKUPS

may not trigger

Facebook use may

not make kids

depressed: Study

NEW YORK : That pint of ice

cream after a nasty breakup may not

do as much damage as you think.

Despite the emotional turmoil, people

on average do not report gaining

weight after a relationship dissolution,

says a new study.

According to the researchers, it has

been well documented that people

sometimes use food as a way to cope

with negative feelings and that emotional

eating can lead to unhealthy

food choices.

"...our research showed that while

it's possible people may drown their

weight gain: Study

sorrows in ice cream for a day or two,

modern humans do not tend to gain

weight after a breakup," said study

author Marissa Harrison, Associate

Professor at Penn State University in

the US.

Breakups can be stressful and emotional,

it could potentially trigger emotional

eating.

"Food was much scarcer in the

ancestral environment, so if your partner

abandoned you, it could have

made gathering food much harder,"

Harrison added. For the study, published

in the Journal of the

Evolutionary Studies Consortium, the

researchers completed two studies to

test the theory that people may be

more likely to gain weight after a relationship

breakup. In the first one, the

researchers recruited 581 people to

complete an online survey about

whether they had recently gone

through a breakup and whether they

gained or lost weight within a year of

the breakup.

Most of the participants—62.7 per

cent—reported no weight change.

For the second study, the

researchers recruited 261 new participants

to take a different, more extensive

survey than the one used in the

first study. The new survey asked

whether participants had ever experienced

the dissolution of a long-term

relationship, and whether they gained

or lost weight as a result.

The survey also asked about participants'

attitudes toward their ex-partner,

how committed the relationship

was, who initiated the breakup,

whether the participants tended to eat

emotionally, and how much participants

enjoy food in general. While all

participants reported experiencing a

break up at some point in their lives,

the majority of participants—65.13

per cent—reported no change in

weight after relationship dissolution.

"The only thing we found was in

the second study, women who already

had a proclivity for emotional eating

did gain weight after a relationship

breakup. But it wasn't common,"

Harrison added.

New York : The amount of time

spent on social media is not directly

adding to the anxiety or depression

issues in teenagers, say reseachers

from Brigham Young University.

The study, published in the journal

Computers in Human Behavior, shows

that it is not merely the amount of time

spent on social media that’s leading to

an increase in depression or anxiety

among adolescents.

“We spent eight years trying to really

understand the relationship between

time spent on social media and depression

for developing teenagers,” said

study author Sarah Coyne, Professor

at Brigham Young University in the

US. “If they increased their social

media time, would it make them more

depressed? Also, if they decreased

their social media time, were they less

depressed? The answer is no. We

found that time spent on social media

was not what was impacting anxiety or

depression,” Coyne added.

Mental health is a multi-process

syndrome, where no one stressor is

likely to be the cause of depression or

anxiety. For the study, researchers

worked with 500 youth between the

ages of 13 and 20, who completed

once-yearly questionnaires over an

eight-year span. Social media use was

measured by asking participants how

much time they spent on social networking

sites on a typical day. To

measure depression and anxiety, participants

responded to questions with

different scales to indicate depressive

symptoms and anxiety levels.

These results were then analysed on

an individual level to see if there was

a strong correlation between the two

variables. At age 13, adolescents

reported an average social networking

use of 31-60 minutes per day.

These average levels increased

steadily so that by young adulthood,

they were reporting upwards of two

hours per day. According to the

researchers, this increase of social networking,

though, did not predict future

mental health. That is, adolescents’

increase in social networking beyond

their typical levels did not predict

changes in anxiety or depression one

year later. Researchers suggest some

healthier ways to use social media: Be

an active user instead of a passive

user. Instead of just scrolling, actively

comment, post and like other content.

Limit social media use at least an

hour before falling asleep. Getting

enough sleep is one of the most protective

factors for mental health, the

researchers said.


16 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 ENTERTAINMENT

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

Parineeti to visit Saina’s

Hyderabad home to

prepare for BIOPIC

Sunny Leone draws flak

for copying artwork,

ACTOR RESPONDS

Hyderabad : Actress Parineeti Chopra, who is all set to play

Saina Nehwal on screen, will be visiting the ace badminton player’s

home here for the first time, as part fo preparation for her

role. “I want to become Saina. For that I want to go to her house

and see how she lives. We have met many times, but this time I

want to go to her house, live like her and eat like her for a day.

She has promised me that her mom will feed me the exact food

that Saina eats. So I am excited to go to her house and live her

life for one whole day,” Parineeti said.

Bollywood actors working in biopics have been known to

make the extra effort to bring alive the character on screen. In the

recent past, actor Ranveer Singh spent 10 days with Kapil Dev,

to prepare for his role of the Indian cricketer in “83”. Earlier,

Priyanka Chopra Jonas spent time with boxer Mary Kom to

essay the wrestler’s life story. The Saina Nehwal biopic is directed

by Amole Gupte and is being produced by T-series.

Would love to go on

long drive with wife

Anushka: Virat Kohli

Mumbai, Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli has said he

would like to go on a long drive with his actress wife Anushka

Sharma when they get the time.

“We haven’t been able to go on long drives as times have been

hectic. Whenever you get time, you go for a holiday mostly, so,

may be, when I spend more time in the city and at home, I will

find places to go for long drives. I think highway is a good place

to go on for a long drive,” said VIrat.

Asked who he would love to take on a long drive, Virat’s reply

was instant. “My wife for sure. Isn’t that obvious?” he quipped,

talking about his better half, actress Anushka Sharma.

Where would he love to go on a long drive?

“You don’t really think about where you want to go when you

go on a long drive. You just get into the car, find a long stretch

which is never ending and just keep going.

Whenever you feel like you are done then just take turn back

and come back home and usually, it would be at night when there

is less traffic. You just have to put on some nice music and great

weather would be handy as well so in the future, when I am in

the city and at home, we will be going for more drives than we

are at the moment,” said Virat, interacting with the media at the

launch of Audi A6, as brand ambassador of the luxury car brand

on Thursday in Mumbai.

Mumbai : Actress Sunny Leone has

been blasted on social media for copying

for charity an artwork originally painted by

French illustrator Malika Favre.

The anonymous Instagram account

Dietsabya called out the similarity on

Monday, sharing snapshots of similar photographs

of Favre and Sunny’s painting.

“We are all for charity, but stealing an

artist’s original work - without credit - and

auctioning it off for charity (as your own)

is just dirty. Left: original by

@malikafavre; right: w* by @sunnyleone,”

the snapshot was captioned.

This forced the Instagram account to

call the actress out on social media.

The actress soon replied that she had not

copied the original artwork but was given a

photograph from which she drew her painting.

She wrote: “Hello. Just to give you the

correct information , I was given a photograph

of this piece of art. I then decided to

paint it! At no time did I claim to come up

with the idea. I simply painted a piece of art

that I saw and loved. It should be taken as a

compliment as it was being donated to cancer

patients for charity. “Nothing more and

nothing less. Sorry you don’t like the version

that I choose to create while helping

Kajal Aggarwal wants

to get married soon

Mumbai, Actress Kajal Aggarwal says

she plans to get married soon.

The actress opened up about her plans to

settle down during a conversation with

Lakshmi Manchu on VOOT’s “Feet Up with

the Stars Telugu”. When Lakshmi asked her

about her wedding plans, Kajal said: “Yes, I

am planning for a wedding soon.” Asked

about the qualities that she would want in

her husband, she said: “Quite a lot of things,

but most importantly he should be possessive,

caring and spiritual.” The actress also

opened up about her beliefs, saying “I’m

very Spiritual, I even have a small idol of

Lord Shiva which travels with me wherever

I go.” When the host asked her “Kill, Hook

Up or Marry”, she said: “Ram Charan —

Kill, N. T. Rama Rao Jr.

Mumbai, Raveena Tandon turned a

year older on Saturday, and it was a

working birthday for the “Mohra”

actress. Raveena, who is currently judging

the dance based reality TV show

“Nach Baliye 9”, reserved the day for

work and quality time with her family.

“Usually on birthdays, people examine

their lives. I think it’s best to do that

while at work. My family is the centre

of everything I do. Spending time with

loved ones and my kids helps me

children in Need. The painting was not

about you or I. It was about trying to help!

Best of luck! Keep creating.” Dietsabya then

shared Favre’s response to Sunny’s painting

on their Instagram stories. “Sunny Leone a

Actress Nia Sharma's glitzy

silver lehenga caught fire at a

Diwali party.

Nia took to Instagram stories

to share details of her little

mishap, revealing that her

lehenga caught fire by a diya at

the party. She did not sustain

injuries thanks to the layers in

her outfit.

She shared a photograph of

the burnt ensemble and said

that she is still unsure of how

she was saved from injury.

The actress wrote: "The power of a

diya. Caught fire in a second! I got saved

by the layers in my outfit or some guards

you and protects you." Nia was seen dancing

at the party with singer Guru

credit would have been the minimum...

Intellectual property is a thing you know?

What if I didn’t want a copy of my work to

be copied by you and auctioned? The cause

is commendable, the attitude not so much.”

Nia Sharma's lehenga

catches fire at Diwali

party, picture goes viral

appreciate the little joys of life. I am

fortunate to have a loving family and

also an extended work family. Both

keep me grounded,” she said.

She also celebrated her birthday on

Friday evening on the sets of “Nach

Baliye 9”. She was surprised when her

whole family, including her parents, inlaws

and daughter, turned up to celebrate

the occasion. Raveena, 45, recently

featured in the recreated version of

her hit song “Sheher Ki Ladki”.

Randhawa. The bash was also attended by

Mika Singh and Kapil Sharma among others.

On the work front, Nia will next be

seen in the fourth installment of Ekta

Kapoor's hit franchise, ‘Naagin’.

Work keeps me grounded: Raveena Tandon


www.theasianindependent.co.uk

Star Bharat’s show Musakaan is

known to be one of the favourites of

audiences. Viewers will witness

major plot twist. Soon a new entrant

will be seen and it is none other

than TV actress Kritika Sengar,

whose acting has been appreciated

for her roles in Kasautii Zindagii

Kay, Jhansi Ki Rani, Punar Vivaah

and Kasam Tere Pyaar Ki.

According to sources from the production

house, Kritika will play the

role of a parallel lead in Musakaan.

There will be a six-year leap in the

storyline. Raunak and Muskaan

(Ssharad Malhotra and Yesha

Rughani) will once again separate

from each other.

Reportedly, Kritika will be seen

as Raunak’s new, second wife as he

gets separated from his first wife

Muskaan. The actress has worked

in many shows. During this time,

her performances for the roles of a

sister-in-law, daughter and daughter-in-law

have always been appreciated.

ENTERTAINMENT

New leading lady

Kritika Sengar bags the parallel lead in Musakaan post time leap

Strength of a woman

Tahira Kashyap’s journey through battling cancer

has been exemplary,

which has given hope

to many. She recently

said while she was

advised to not reveal

cancer, she decided to

do it. Now, that she has

emerged victorious

after undergoing treatment,

Tahira is determined

to keep the dialogue

going. She will

be part of a discussion

in Chandigarh on

October 29 for Leaf &

Life organisation, run

by Rohini Mahajan,

which grows and supplies Microgreens.

Talking about the campaign, Tahira says, “It is very

important to share your story, but not stop at that.

Microgreens encourage a healthy lifestyle and it’s a

great honour to discuss with women why and how

they should choose a lifestyle high on nutrition.”

When Anupam Kher learned a life

lesson in the ninth standard!

Clearly, he has had a rollercoaster

of a ride through his 35-

year-long film journey, since his

1984 breakthrough with

Saaransh. And that’s exactly

what Anupam Kher has tried to

capture in his new autobiography,

Lessons Life Taught Me,

Unknowingly. Although the

book has him sharing anecdotes

and rare nuggets from his life as

well as the lessons it taught him,

the actor maintains the idea was

not to “make it sensational”. “I

strongly believe you have to live

life with your own values and

that you should be able to look at

yourself in the mirror with pride.

So, the book is very funny and

has great entertainment, but I

have tried not to make it sensational.

Though a lot of people

asked me about it, that was not

my intention. In the book, I have

narrated some incidents from my

life which needed to be told the

way I have mentioned them. But

I am very clear that I can’t tell

my truth at somebody else’s

inconvenience. So, I have

changed a few names and also

concealed their identities,” says

the actor.

The Silver Linings Playbook

(2012) actor says he has mentioned

the names of people who

he has dealt with at the professional

level, but changed the

identities of those he has had a

rendezvous with in the personal

sphere. Ask him what’s been his

biggest life lesson till date, and

Kher goes back to his school

days to recount a story when he

was in Class IX. “I remember I

was in ninth standard, and had

taken the report card to my

father. He looked at it and told

me that my rank was 59. He then

asked me about the strength of

my class. When I told him it’s

60, I was scared despite the fact

that he never hit me physically,”

says the actor, adding “after taking

a pause”, his father gave him

a “lesson that he still swears by”.

“He explained to me that the

student who ranked first would

always run the risk of coming

second every year and face failure.

But someone, who is in the

59th position, can always work

hard and reach the 30th or 40th

position. My dad said, ‘Next

time, your rank should be 48 and

not 59’. And that was such a

great lesson as I then understood

the meaning of failure,” he adds.

Sunny Leone surprised by Nawazuddin’s dancing skills

Mumbai, Actress Sunny

Leone says she was surprised

with actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui’s

dancing skills while working on

the song “Battiyan bujhaado”.

The song will feature in

Nawazuddin’s upcoming

“Motichoor Chaknachoor”. It is

composed by Ramji Gulati, who

also sings the song with Jyotica

Tangri. “I was hooked to the

soundtrack from the very first

time I heard it. A catchy tune, that

really grows on you, ‘Battiyan

bujhaado’ is a full-blown dance

song, that will surely be on every

party’s playlist. And shooting the

song with Nawaz, with whom I

am sharing a screen for the first

time, was an

extremely enjoyable

experience,”

Sunny said.

“He has quite

surprised me

with how sporting

and fun he

can be at dancing,

on and offscreen,

which the

audience will see

when the song

launches today,” she added.

“Motichoor Chaknachoor” is

about a young NRI husbandobsessed

bride and a desperate

groom Pushpinder (Nawazuddin).

Athiya Shetty will be seen

essaying role of Anita, an educated

girl who is looking for a green

card holder groom. Pushpinder,

the eager to get married boy, is

settled in Dubai, and follows his

mother’s instructions. The story is

about how their life changes

when the two get married.

Directed by Debamitra Biswal,

produced by Viacom18 Studios,

Woodpecker Movies, Rajesh and

Kiran Bhatia, the film will release

on November 15.

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

17

Ekta Kapoor ‘burns the

floor’ with Rajkummar Rao,

calls him ‘partner in crime’

Diwali is over but it seems the festive fever still rages on for many

people including

celebrities, who

continue to post

celebratory

videos and pictures

on social

media. Among

the many videos

still pouring in, a

dance clip featuring

actor

Rajkummar Rao

and producer

Ekta Kapoor at

the latter's

Diwali bash has

been trending.

Ekta on

Sunday hosted a

star-studded

Diwali bash in

w h i c h

Rajkummar marked his presence. Sharing a glimpse of their celebrations,

Ekta took to Instagram and posted a video in which she, along

with Rajkummar, is seen grooving to the Govinda-Raveena Tandon

hit song ‘Akhiyon se goli maare’, from the 1998 film, ‘Dulhe Raja’.

"This had to be shared! I cannot dance but I guess Zumba and my

partner in crime are helping! A Diwali get together (Small one) turns

into a floor burning night with my #lsd guy RajKummar! #dancingsince2010,"

Ekta captioned the video.

Rajkummar made his Bollywood debut with Ekta Kapoor's production

film ‘Ragini MMS’. He even recently featured in her film

‘Judgementall Hai Kya’.

When King Khan

CHARMED

... at the interview with David

Lettermen, which has gone viral

Shah Rukh Khan’s fans across the globe have fallen in love with

the superstar all over

again after watching

his latest interview

with television host

David Letterman on

Netflix, which is

currently viral.

Fans of King

Khan took to Twitter

to express their love

for the superstar

after watching the

interview and they

just can’t stop gushing

about it. The

actor took to Twitter

to share the news

with his fans that he

is watching his own

interview with

younger son

AbRam!

He tweeted, “So

you finally settle

down on your soft

bed, with your softer

littlest one & say,

“let’s watch something

new today...on

@NetflixIndia ...”

and this banner pops

up!! & the littlest

one quips...”papa it’s

not new...it’s just you!! Well...” Reacting to SRK’s tweet, a fan

wrote: “Loved it. Best statement when you said Shah Rukh Khan is

a myth I am just his employee. More glory to you.” Another fan commented:

“How sweet being with your lil ray of sunshine...but

ShahRukh..you’re new everyday ,never a dull moment with you

around....you never chase to amaze me. Loved watching it. Thanks

for being in my life. Keep Shining your light.”


18 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 ENTERTAINMENT

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

Boman Irani talks

about the surge in

content driven cinema

and admits that

he wouldn’t waste

time on a film that

he won’t enjoy

A supporter of underdog stories,

Boman Irani says he knew

he wanted to be a part of Made

In China the moment he heard

the script.

“I loved the story. I was keen

to work with Rajkummar Rao,

too. I spent a lot of with the

director Mikhil Musale, and I

realised that the story is in good

hands. I have done underdog

stories before and the stance

this film takes is quite interesting,”

says the 59-year-old actor,

who plays a sexologist in the

film and hopes the film encourages

people to seek medical

help for sexual issues and not

shy away from it. Working with

Rajkummar was a pleasure for

the senior actor who says he

was “proud to work with him”.

He adds, “I kind of understood

what Rajkummar is about. You

do tend to understand what

process he is going through, if

you are an actor. When I met

and worked with him, I realised

that this guy is so good at his

work, and we should all feel

happy for his success. There is

a great reward for work and

application he puts into his

roles.”

2019 saw a surge of movies

hailed as new-age cinema and

content-driven films. Boman is

thrilled with the kind of films

being made but also feels that

the credit for them must be

given where it is due. He says,

“It is the writers who are writing

stories and have brought

about the change. It is not the

Once again, Ankhiyon

Se Goli Maare

The shoot for Pati Patni Aur Woh remake, starring Kartik

Aaryan, Ananya Panday and Bhumi Pednekar, has already been

wrapped up. But, reportedly, the lead actors will reunite soon at

the studio to shoot a song. The song is a recreation of Govinda and

Raveena Tandon’s Dulhe Raja song Akhiyon Se Goli Maare. The

choreography this time will be by Farah Khan. Director Mudassar

Aziz is excited to have her on board.

Mudassar said that their story is based in a certain milieu. To

take the narrative forward, they required more songs. The makers

collectively felt that they needed a fun song to communicate with

the audience and that the characters could let loose in an alternate

setting. The movie is the remake of BR Chopra’s 1978 classic hit

film which starred Sanjeev Kumar, Vidya Sinha and Ranjeeta.

‘WRITERS

deserve just as

much credit’

actor who has done that, let’s

be clear and honour the writer.

Sure, the actors are choosing

these scripts and being courageous.

But not just actors, writers,

too, should get due credit

for the surge in content-driven

films. The writers need to be

appreciated and even paid well

for creating content that is celebrated

in films.”

The Munna Bhai M.B.B.S

(2003) actor has done 93 films

to date but he says he isn’t

looking at the 100-film mark.

“That is not my goal. I do films

to have a good time. I want to

enjoy my role and the process

of the film, more than anything

else. I don’t want to

waste time on a

film that I

won’t enjoy,”

he says.

Dalljiet Kaur did not expect to be

evicted from the house this early

Actor Dalljiet Kaur was

recently evicted from a popular

reality show and this left her

fans shocked. However, she is

happy about the love and support

she received from people.

“My fans did not expect me to

be the first one to evicted and

neither did I. This is shocking

for me as well because I had the

potential as I was real and not

faking it. I was even doing the

tasks well. I did not fight with

anyone much. I think we as

housemates would have formed

deep bonds after the third week

but I did not get the opportunity,”

she says. Dalljiet adds that

she never intended to fight or

create a scene in the house just

to get noticed. “I did not want

to cry and show my weakness

because my fans appreciate my

strength and get inspired by it.

If I would have cried, I’d

have got more support but I did

not want to do it. It was very

important for me to represent

my family well so that even

they could feel proud of me,”

she says, adding that the show

has taught her about people and

their mindsets. On asking about

her future plans, Dalljiet

reveals, “I am looking for a

new phase in my career now. I

hope I do a lot of events, web

series, and daily soaps. I want

to send a message across to all

producers out there that I want

to do something really good

and my dates are available, so

they can give me work immediately

because I don’t want to sit

at home.”

Now, Baiju Bawra by Bhansali

Bollywood’s ace director Sanjay Leela

Bhansali, after recently announcing his

movie titled Gangubai Kathiawadi, has now

announced his second venture titled Baiju

Bawra. The movie is slated to release on the

auspicious occasion of Diwali in 2021. The

film will be a revenge story, but nothing

concrete is known as of now. Bhansali

Productions took to its official Twitter handle

and announced the film, stating it to be

the director’s most ambitious magnum

opus!

Reports suggest that Ajay Devgn is in

talks with the director for the film. If things

work out, this will be the first time in 20

years when the actor and director will be

collaborating after Hum Dil De Chuke

Sanam.

Meanwhile, Bhansali’s Gangubai

Kathiwadi is also in line. It is reported to be

based on a chapter in Husain Zaidi’s novel

Mafia Queens Of Mumbai. The filmmaker

is yet to announce a male lead in the film

opposite Alia Bhatt. These two projects

come after shelving of Salman Khan and

Alia Bhatt-starrer Inshallah.


www.theasianindependent.co.uk

NEWS

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

19

Naga settlement only after

consulting all stake-holders

New Delhi : The Centre on

Thursday clarified that all stake-holders,

including Assam, Manipur and

Arunachal Pradesh, will be duly consulted

and their concerns will be taken

into consideration before any settlement

is arrived at with Naga groups.

The Union Home Ministry issued

the clarification following rumours

being spread in some sections of

media, including social media, that

"final Naga settlement has been

arrived at and will be announced

soon".

"This is creating anxiety and concern

in some parts of the country,"

said the statement.

"It is clarified that before any settlement

is arrived at with Naga groups, all stakeholders

including States of Assam, Manipur and

Arunachal Pradesh will be duly consulted and their

concerns will be taken into consideration," it said,

stressing "no credence needs to be given to such

rumours and incorrect information".

Getting nod from the apex leadership of all 14

Naga tribes and various stake-holders in a meeting

held in Nagaland on October 18, the Centre had

said that it had determined to conclude the peace

process without delay after the overwhelming support

in favour of a settlement of the issue.

Noting that "endless negotiation under the shadow

of guns is not acceptable", a statement from the

Naga interlocutor’s office said that the Central government

expects all negotiating parties to heed the

will of the people, and facilitate the conclusion of

the Naga peace process within the stipulated time.

As the 22-year-old Naga talks between the

Centre and National Socialist Council of Nagaland-

Isak-Muivah stand on shaky ground with some

leaders of the groups adopting a "procrastinating

attitude" by raising the contentious symbolic issues

of separate Naga national flag and Constitution on

which they are fully aware of the Centre’s position,

Centre’s representative and interlocutor for Naga

Peace Talks, R.N. Ravi on Friday held a detailed

consultation meeting with the primary stake-holders

of the Naga society. The

meeting was attended by the

apex leadership of all the 14

Naga tribes of Nagaland, all the

minority non-Naga tribes of

Nagaland, the Nagaland GB

(Gaon Burahs) Federation, the

Nagaland Tribes Council, the

Church leaders and civil society

organisations, said the statement.

It said that primary stakeholders

- tribal and civil society

organisations from Nagaland,

Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh

and Assam -- were involved in

the peace process and made

valuable contributions through

regular consultations and insightful inputs, said,

adding the Church leaders with their constant

prayers and goodwill have immensely contributed

to the cause of enduring peace.

It is a matter of great satisfaction that agreements

with the NSCN (I-M) on August 3, 2015 and

with seven Naga armed groups under the banner of

Working Committee of Naga National Political

Groups (NNPGs) on November 17, 2017 -- on the

political parameters of the settlement were signed,

the statement said, adding that a mutually agreed

draft comprehensive settlement, including all the

substantive issues and competencies, is ready for

inking the final agreement.

300 farmers booked for

stubble burning in UP

Pilibhit (Uttar Pradesh), Three hundred farmers

have been booked for burning stubble in their

fields in Uttar Pradesh s Pilibhit district, despite

directives from the National Green Tribunal

(NGT).

The cases have been registered by revenue

officials in villages that include Bilsanda, Neria,

Amaria, Puranpur, Seramau, Madhotanda,

Jahanabad, Bisalpur and Gajraula.

Angry farmers are now taking to the streets to

register their protest against the police action.

Charanjeet Singh, a local farmer said that the

farmers were already suffering due to non-payment

of cane dues, low prices of paddy and the

paucity of fertiliser, and now they were being

harassed in the name of stubble burning.

City magistrate Ritu Punia said that the directives

of the NGT were being followed and the

district administration would not allow stubble

burning in the district. We have directed all revenue

officials to report cases of stubble burning in

the district, he said.


20 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 NEWS

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

MASS surveillance tech just

needs a missed call to hack you

New Delhi : As Indians break their

heads over WhatsApp spygate where

an Israeli bug infected select users

smartphones to access their personal

details, the mass surveillance technology

has truly come of age and now the

governments just need to make a

missed call to install an "exploit link"

into the device of a person they want

to bug and listen in.

From the days when surveillance

methods involved bugging the phone

or cable wires to tap phones (remember

Radia tapes!) to track a person’s

vehicle by installing a tracking device

beneath the car, cyber criminals and

hackers have devised modern and

untraceable tools to hack into your

systems. The most popular mass surveillance

programme is ’PRISM’ --

under which the US National Security

Agency (NSA) collects user’s personal

communications from various US

internet companies. ’PRISM’ allegedly

collects stored Internet communications

based on demands made to internet

companies.

The NSA can use PRISM requests

to target communications that were

encrypted when they traveled across

the internet backbone, to focus on

stored data that telecommunication filtering

systems discarded earlier, and to

get access to data. Its existence was

leaked by NSA contractor and whistleblower

Edward Snowden, who warned

that the extent of mass data collection

was far greater than the public knew.

US President Barack Obama, during a

visit to Germany, stated that the NSA’s

Cupertino (California) :

Riding once again on its

Services and Wearable business

even as iPhone sales dropped 9

per cent, Apple has posted a

strong revenue of $64 billion --

an increase of 2 per cent from

the year-ago quarter -- for its

fiscal 2019 fourth quarter that

ended on September 28.

Services revenue hit an alltime

high of $12.5 billion while

global sales accounted for 60

per cent of the quarter’s revenue.

For its full fiscal year,

Apple generated over $46 billion

in total services revenue.

"We concluded a groundbreaking

fiscal 2019 with our

highest Q4 revenue ever, fueled

by accelerating growth from

Services, Wearables and iPad,"

Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a

statement.

Apple’s profit dipped 3 per

cent to $13.7 billion, but the

$3.03 earnings per share (EPS)

met analyst projections.

"With customers and

reviewers raving about the new

generation of iPhones, new,

noise-cancelling AirPods Pro,

the hotly-anticipated arrival of

Apple TV+, and our best lineup

of products and services, we’re

very optimistic about what the

holiday quarter has in store,"

Cook elaborated.

"All told, outside of iPhone,

our revenue grew by $17 billion

to almost $118 billion," for

the full fiscal year," he added.

Apple forecasts revenue

between $85.5 billion and

$89.5 billion for its fiscal 2019

first quarter and operating

expenses between $9.6 billion

and $9.8 billion.

"Our strong business performance

drove record Q4 EPS

of $3.03 and record Q4 operating

cash flow of $19.9 billion,"

said Luca Maestri, Apple’s

CFO. "We also returned over

$21 billion to shareholders,

including almost $18 billion in

share repurchases and $3.5 billion

in dividends and equivalents,

as we continue on our

path to reaching a net cash neutral

position over time," he

added. According to Cook, the

company set new Q4 revenue

records in the Americas and

data gathering practices constitute "a

circumscribed, narrow system directed

at us being able to protect our people".

According to Amnesty.org, NSA and

UK’s Government Communications

Headquarters (GCHQ) are monitoring

you with code names. ’Muscular’ is

one such project that "intercepts user

data as it passes between Google

servers". Yahoo! was also said to be

affected. Between December 2012 and

Despite iPhone decline, Apple

logs record quarter growth

Rest of Asia Pacific and saw

further improvement in our

revenue trends in Greater

China. "Outside of iPhone, our

September quarter revenue was

up 17 per cent. We reached a

new all-time high for Services

with growth accelerating to 18

per cent. We generated well

over 50 per cent revenue

growth from Wearables," said

Cook. iPhone revenue in the

September quarter was $33 billion.

"This 9 per cent decline

over last year is a significant

improvement over the 15 per

cent decline we saw across the

first three quarters," Cook

noted. In the iPad segment,

Apple generated 17 per cent

growth driven by iPad Pro.

Apple saw double-digit

services revenue growth and

all-time records in all five of its

geographic segments.

"We established new alltime

highs for multiple services

categories including the App

Store, AppleCare, Music, cloud

services and our App Store

search ad business. We are well

on our way to accomplishing

our goal of doubling our fiscal

year 2016 Services revenue

during 2020," Cook told the

analysts.

For Apple Pay, revenue and

transactions more than doubled

year-over-year with over 3 billion

transactions in the

September quarter exceeding

PayPal’s number of transactions

and growing four times as

fast. Apple Pay is now live in

49 markets around the world

with over 6,000 issuers on the

platform. Apple Card was

launched in August in the US.

"Users kind of apply for

Apple Card through the wallet

app on iPhone in minutes and

start using it right away in

stores, in apps and on websites.

They’ve told us they love Apple

Card’s simplicity, privacy,

security and transparency,

which has helped them make

healthier financial choices,"

Cook mentioned.

Later this year, the company

is adding another feature to

simply manage payments right

in the Apple Wallet app on

iPhone.

January 2013, ’Muscular’ collected

181 million records but "Google has

now strengthened security between

their servers since then.

Another tool called ’Optic Nerve’

allowed secret access to Yahoo! webcam

chats. In a six-month period, it

spied on 1.8 million Yahoo! users and

took one still image every five minutes

of video per user. "GCHQ targeted

Belgacom, Belgium’s largest telecommunications

provider with spyware

called Regin, a malicious piece of

software designed to break into

Belgaom’s networks. The purpose of

the GCHQ hack was to spy on phones

and internet users using the Belgacom

network". Since then, the technology

has evolved to such an extent that just

a missed call is enough to snoop on

anyone, anywhere. Citizen Lab, a laboratory

based at the Munk School of

Global Affairs and Public Policy of the

University of Toronto, has identified

over 100 cases of abusive targeting of

human rights’ defenders and journalists

in at least 20 countries across the

globe via the new piece of Israeli spyware

called Pegasus. Once Pegasus is

installed, it begins contacting the operator’s

command and control (C&C)

servers to receive and execute operators’

commands, and send back the target’s

private data, including passwords,

contact lists, calendar events,

text messages, and live voice calls

from popular mobile messaging apps.

"The operator can even turn on the

phone’s camera and microphone to

capture activity in the phone’s vicinity,

and use the GPS function to track a target’s

location and movements," said

Citizen Lab. The spyware can be

placed on phones using multiple vectors,

or means of infection. The

WhatsApp exploit from May 2019 was

one such vector. In 2017, the wife of a

murdered Mexican journalist was sent

alarming text messages concerning her

husband’s murder, designed to trick her

into clicking on a link and infecting her

phone with the Pegasus spyware. In

2018, a close confidant of Jamal

Khashoggi was targeted in Canada

with a fake package notification,

resulting in the infection of his iPhone.

Citizen Lab has tracked more than two

dozen cases using similar techniques.

Indian-American White House official

caught in impeachment crossfire

New York : An Indian-American White House official has

been caught in the crossfire of internal politics arising from the

Ukraine controversy

that has engulfed

President Donald

Trump in an impeachment.

The expertise of

Kashyap Patel, the

National Security

Council’s (NSC) senior

Director of counter-terrorism,

on Ukraine has

been questioned by

another NSC official, Lt Col Alexander Vindman, during the

impeachment inquiry hearings, Politico reported on Wednesday.

The sniping brings to the open the conflicts inside the Trump

administration between those like Patel, who are considered his

loyalists, and those opposed to him. Vindman told the secret

inquiry that Patel had "misrepresented" his expertise on Ukraine to

Trump, Politico reported. He said that had been prevented from

participating in a briefing for Trump on Ukraine because the

President believed Patel was the expert on that country instead of

himself, Politico reported.

Vindman said that the NSC Senior Director for European and

Russian affairs, Fiona Hill, told him that she and then-National

Security Adviser John Bolton felt that his presence at the briefing

would create "an uncomfortable situation," according to Politico.

The Washington Post also gave an account matching it in major

details. Politico had earlier reported that Hill testified before the

impeachment inquiry that Trump thought Patel was in charge of

Ukraine policy for the NSC. Vindman, who was born in Ukraine

and came to the US as a refugee when he was a child, is a decorated

veteran of the Iraq war. He was on the line listening to Trump’s

phone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky in July during

which he asked for help in investigating former Vice President

Joe Biden’ son’s connections to a Ukrainian gas company and if his

father had interfered in an investigation of the company. Vindman

has been hailed a hero by the Democrats and the media for his testimony

against Trump. He had asserted that Trump had undermined

national security by asking Ukraine for a favour against the Bidens

because that could undermine the bipartisan support for Kyiv.

While he said that he was not allowed to make some changes to

the reconstruction of the Trump-Zelensky phone conversation that

was made public, it did not appear from leaked accounts of his

impeachment testimony that he had established that Trump had

made the Ukrainian probe of the Bidens a condition for releasing

aid, as has been alleged.


www.theasianindependent.co.uk

NEWS

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

21

Dushyant Chautala Factor

Frank Hebert rightly said,

“Absolute power attracts the corruptible.”

The fractured assembly election

2019 result in Haryana shows that the

foundation of collapse in the BJP turf

has been laid down by the Congress

Party. The result also shows that

Congress has emerged as a strong

opposition party with 30 MLAs

despite the NDA`s government anticongress,

anti-dynasty 24×7 feisty &

marooned corporate media propaganda

& meager financial resources.

There is no denying the fact that

Modi`s popularity has been dropped

obliquely. The Congress party has succeeded

in making a dent in the Modi

turf within five years. It will be quite

difficult for the Modi 2.0 in the coming

years to rebound after Haryana

assembly election plummet to win a

clear cut majority in the upcoming

elections in two states: Jharkhand &

Delhi, as happened in 2019 provided

the Electronic Voting Machines

(EVMs) do not tamper. Enough entertainment

has been made by Modi 1.0

to befool the people of the super-poor

country. Now the people of India

understand subterfuges of the BJP.

Sunday is always a holiday. No government

department works for the

welfare of the people on Sunday. The

BJP is so greedy, insecure & desperate

to hold power that even the top party

leadership could not wait till Monday

for Swearing-in-Ceremony of

Manohar Lal Khattar as the Chief

Minister of Haryana for the second

inning. It reflects the sneaky mentality

of the BJP. It is really disgusting to

think. Post-poll alliance with the

Jannayak Janta Party (JJP) shows that

the BJP can stoop to any sneaky level

to retain & sustain political power. It

does not make any difference for the

BJP if a leader of a political party, who

is willing to extend support, is a corrupt,

lacerated, squinted, black or

white, deaf or dumb. The legacy that

Dushyant Chautala will follow is reprehensible.

His great- grandfather Om

Prakash Chautala & his father Ajay

Chautala both have been convicted in

the 2000 Junior Basic Teachers

recruitment scam[i] and were sentenced

to ten years of imprisonment.

Dushyant Chautala`s love for his

father, who is already on 15 days furlough

from Tihar jail, strikes the right

political cord with two purposes in

mind while shaking hands with the

BJP. One is to rule the state & the

other is to protect his family.

A young, tall, smart, US-educated

Dushyant Chautala, Deputy Chief

Minister of Haryana understands better

how he can protect his beloved and

respected father Ajay Chautala under

the thumb of the BJP. He also understands

that the BJP is a ‘Nirma

Washing Powder ’now- a -days for all

the corrupt political leaders in India.

Some of the erstwhile exceedingly

corrupt Congress party leaders and

other various political party leaders

have joined the BJP to save their skin

in HARYANA POLITICS

from the law-enforcing agencies. For

instance, BJP Mukul Roy, BJP

Narayan Rane, BJP Sushil Modi, BJP

Giriraj Singh, BJP Janardhan Reddy

are facing charges due to financial

scams. They all defected their parent

political party & joined the BJP. It is

also a fact that the BJP that claims a

party with difference seems to be a

Heaven for all the corrupt political

leaders. Social critics assert that

whosoever will embrace the BJP, his

or her sins will be washed away in the

Maili Ganga. His or her corruption

cases will be withdrawn or partially

closed or no CBI or ED will be sent to

his or her house to make a raid in the

future. The NDA government under

Prime Minister Modi did not dare to

touch these BJP corrupt leaders.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi does

not get tired of blaming Gandhi

Family until today for all ills of the

country. Of course, there is a vast difference

between speech and action.

Dushyant Chautala, 31, having

Business Administration degree from

California University will be the first

young, dynamic Deputy Chief

Minister of Haryana who earned

unhappiness of the voters of

Haryana by taking a stupid decision

to shake hands with the BJP. The

young, inexperienced Dushyant

Chautala is not fully aware of the

dirty, divisive politics of the BJP. Two

things are certain, one is that Dushyant

Chautala`s Jannayak Janta Party (JJP)

will be treated as a Junior Partner and

the other is that the JJP`s MLAs will

be co-opted by the BJP sooner or later.

– Dr. Rahul Kumar, PhD

It is certain that the BJP will encourage

factionalism within the JJP.

Past track record of the BJP shows

that the Regional political party Chiefs

are not treated well by the BJP. Two

examples are pertinent to refer here;

Ram Das Athawale, President of

Republican Party of India (A) once a

loyal dog to Sharad Pawar, President

of Nationalist Congress Party in

Maharashtra and Mayawati of

Bahujan Samaj Party(BSP) swallowed

by the BJP. Both shook hands with the

BJP. Ram Das Athwale is an agent of

BJP-Shiv Sena in Maharastra.

Mayawati not only lost Dalit vote

bank but also respect among the Dalit

communities. The BJP powerful

machinery backed by the rich businessmen

and corporate houses in connivance

with the RSS workers works

day & night to use acid to destroy the

roots of an opposition political party.

Today both are a political trophy to be

kept in the corner of a home. The state

of Haryana is sui generis, a sociological

term used by Emile

Durkheim, a French sociologist,

in itself. The Jat community

dominates the sociocultural,

socio-economic &

socio-political spheres in the

state. The Jat caste has a reasonable

representation in almost all

sectors like education, government

services, police, etc. Agriculture landholding

by the Jat community in

Haryana rules the roost. Literacy

among women in Haryana is still an

issue to ponder over. Only 29 percent

of women age 15-49 in the state have

completed 12[ii]. 34 percent of

women age 15-49 in Haryana have

experienced physical or sexual violence[iii].

There is a substantial

increase in crime under the Khattar

BJP government in the state.

According to National Crime Record

Bureau (NCRB), the state recorded

57.1 percent increase in crime rate in

2016(The Tribune, 23 Oct 2019). The

practice of patriarchy in the state poses

several challenges to the state social

harmony. Honor killings in the state

are quite prevalent. “Even marriages

into the same gotra(same descendants

& same lineage clan) have emerged as

the causes of honor killings in the

state. The role of community members,

community elders & particularly

the community Councils (such as

Khap Panchayats) can be observed as

patronizing the honor killings & protecting

the killers. Honor Killings are

majorly executed by the Jats

in the state”[iv]. Despite,

Betti Padhao, Betti bachao

flagship programme, the girl

child is not at all welcome by

the members of the Jat community

in New India of

Narendra Modi.

The state of Haryana has

been always in the headlines

due to atrocities by the Jats against the

Scheduled castes. The socio-economic

conditions of the Scheduled Castes in

the state of Haryana are worsening day

by day. According to NCRB

2017report, a 19.24 percent increase

has been reported in crimes against

Scheduled Castes in Haryana.

Surinder Singh Jodhka, teaching

Sociology at the Centre for the Study

of Social Systems, Jawaharlal Nehru

University explains, “Politically also

the locally dominant communities did

not care for support of Dalits. A Jat

leader from the Haryana region, Sir

Chhotu Ram of the Unionist Party,

who acquired quite a prominence in

the regional politics of Punjab during

the pre-independence period, had once

told some Dalits that he could not do

anything for their welfare as it might

offend the landowning Jats. He reportedly

said:

I cannot annoy my own brothers to

benefit you. If the zamindars do not

stop these practices, I cannot do anything.

If on this basis you want to

deprive us of your votes do so, for it

does not matter. The zamindars are

numerically stronger than you in the

villages[v].

The members of the Jat community

practice caste discrimination against

religious minorities. The communal

threat, particularly to Muslims in the

state, has increased manifold due to

the existence of several Gau Rakshak

Dals aided and abetted by the Bajrang

Dal, VHP and the RSS. On 10 June

2016 in Faridabad district, Haryana,

two Muslim men allegedly found

transporting beef were forced to consume

dung, urine, milk & curd by vigilantes

who uploaded footage of the

incident[vi]. Khattar during his first

tenure, implemented Hindu holy text,

the Bhagwad Gita in the Haryana

school curriculum. The BJP under the

Khattar government in the state succeeded

to a larger extent to suppress

the Dalits, Muslims, Sikhs &

Christians in the state and pampered

the vigilantes. Brahmins, Khatris get

social preferences under the Khattar

government in the state.

Unemployment is high among the

members of the religious minorities.

Haryana is not a safe place for the

poor Dalits, Muslims & Christians.

Real Estate market is quite volatile

in the state of Haryana. The land

prices in Gurugram are comparatively

higher than in other districts of the

state. The presence of multinational

companies (MNCs), chain of foreign

Five Star Hotels attracts the attention

of wealthy people across India &

abroad to invest money in the real

estate market. In contemporary times,

the Real Estate market in Gurugram

especially get stuck up because of a

larger number of court cases against

Haryana Urban Development

Authority (HUDA) filed by the farmers.Due

to a perpetual rise in land

prices, the farmers who sold their land

to the HUDA 10 years back or their

land acquired by the HUDA to redevelop

the city of Gurugram, are coming

back to reclaim more financial

compensation for their land.

See Page 23


22 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 WORLD

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

Remarkable ‘philosophy’.

He thanked the people of

Maharashtra and Haryana for

‘posing’ faith in BJP despite the

known fact that the arrogant

ministers in both the states lost

miserably. Now, when all the

leaders are in Jail in Jammu and

Kashmir, all the major political

parties boycotted except for

BJP, he is hailing these ‘second’

tier Panchayat elections in

J & K as ‘historic’. So, they

have everything historic without

participation of people. Sad

part is that secular rationalists

too fall in such trap. If you have

heard the speech of a so-called

‘secularists’ who said that her

Hindu voice was not allowed in

‘secular’ India during the US

Congressional hearing, then listen

to the speech made by Dr

Natasha Kaul, a Kashmiri

expatriate who expose the

attempt to divert attention from

the real issues. Look at the

videos after the hearing and

how she was harassed by the

KPs there.

The narrative of the Sangh

Parivar which are being planted

through social media and some

time used by the ‘liberals’ are

dangerous but it is meant to

attract the caste Hindus in rest

of the country, to feed them

continuously with anti Muslim

feeling and divert the entire

narrative and issue into a

Pakistan sponsored terrorism.

Agreed, Pakistan is responsible

for many thing including

Islamising the entire Kashmir

issue but then arent Kashmiri

Pandits responsible for using it

to create hatred against

Muslims. Question is what has

government done to win over

the Kashmiris. Does it want

Kashmiris to be at its mercy

and without any credible political

leadership or whether RSS

is looking for some Khattar

kind of leader in the valley.

If you listen to the entire discussion

at the US

Congressional hearing where

the Congress members countered

some of the arguments

put forward by Arti Tikku

Singh, who has off late become

fan of the Sangh Parivar and

BJP. Strange are India’s ‘secularists’

who can be swayed by

the anti Muslim feeling and

who look at Kashmir issue just

from the ‘terrorist’ view point

and as if there are no other

issues except for the infiltration

and terrorism. They are the

issues and must be dwelt with

seriously but can be hide from

the fact that the Jammu and

Kashmir issue remain to be

taken care off and resolved otherwise

there will not be peace.

Kashmiri Pandits who have

become Pawns in the hands of

Hindutva can not discuss

Kashmir since 1990 but since it

was purchased by Gulab Singh

and how the rules were framed,

how the King helped cronies to

become landowners and why

the majority of the Kashmiri

Muslims faced discrimination

during the Dogra Raj. It is also

important and perhaps

political historians

post independent

India can

do that, make a

chronological history

of the power

of Kashmiri

Pandits vis a vis

various prime

ministers of India.

They always

enjoyed protection

of the power people.

Look from

Nehru’s time to

Indira Gandhi,

there were senior officers of

KPs in the PMO. It happened

till Rajiv Gandhi. Where are

they now but then KPs,

it seems, today are

totally mesmerized by

the ‘Gujarat model’.

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat

social and human rights activist

Speak to Kashmiris

to resolve the issue

Kashmir is not India

and Pakistan. It is not

merely terrorism. It is people of

Kashmir and their will too. We

say, it is our ‘internal’ matter.

Fair enough but what is internal.

If people are unable to go

to doctors, remain without

newspapers, remain without

internet and other communication.

Can we keep people out of

the courts and judiciary. Can

Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmbedabad,

Kolkata, Banglore, Hyderabad,

Chennai be kept without communication,

internet and television

services for even a single

day ? Can you imagine what

will happen if the mobile services

are disrupted in these

All have a stake in it.

You cant discuss

Kashmir without

engaging their media,

their activists and

their political leadership.

Building up

narrative through the

corrupt and communal

media will not

help India gain any

positive responses on

the issue.

‘nationalist’

places.

What about

the judiciary

and media. Did

we see any

newspaper writing

a front page

bold news and

following it up

courageously

about the

‘arrest’ of Dr

F a r o o q

Abdullah and

other leaders.

Can anyone say

that the Home Minister mislead

the Parliament and the

Supreme Court but then when

the courts are

not ready to listen

and take

their time to

allow things

happen on its

own, you cant

expect anything.

It will

need an A G

Noorani to

speak the truth to our power,

our Courts as we all will fear

contempt as well as harassment.

I know not all in the

media are like that and there

are many serious voices but

they need to speak up though

the space is very little.

For the government and its

good wishers, it is important to

understand that internationally

all these tricks wont work as

they are used to in India

through desi nationalist media

which stand completely

exposed today. In this digital

age, people have their own

sources of information and

international media has report-

ed this issue seriously. How can

anyone think of a solution of a

problem without engaging the

local people, media, intellectuals,

civil society and political

leadership. Kashmir issue is not

an issue for you to get benefit

in Maharashtra and Haryana. It

will have to be solve through

participation of local people

and not through jumlas and

rhetoric that is being produced

to you through an absolutely

spineless media.

In any democracy, it is people

who matter and they are

represented through their representatives,

civil society,

activists, academics, lawyers,

journalists, media. All have a

stake in it. You cant discuss

Kashmir without engaging their

media, their activists and their

political leadership. Building

up narrative through the corrupt

and communal media will not

help India gain any positive

responses on the issue. The only

way out is to speak to the people,

listen to their voices and

allow them have a say in their

affairs. Any chest thumping

may give you votes elsewhere

but not help resolve the issue

particularly when India is looking

for support on the issue

from the international community

without wanting to ‘internationalise’

the issue.

Vidya Bhushan Rawat is a

social and human rights

activist. He blogs at

www.manukhsi.blogspot.com

twitter @freetohumanity

Email: vbrawat@gmail.com


www.theasianindependent.co.uk

WORLD

Indira Gandhi Assassination : Congress used

Hindu card to consolidate its position politically

without fighting the hatred ideologically

This last day of October

reminds us the brutal assassination

of the then Prime Minister

Mrs Indira Gandhi, by her own

security guards who were supposed

to protect her. Since June

1984 when Indira Gandhi

ordered ‘Operation Bluestar’ at

the Golden Temple in Amritsar,

the Sikh feelings were tremendously

hurt but there was no

attempt to assuage the feelings.

Somehow every Sikh became a

‘terrorist’ and victim of the sinister

campaign to humiliate him. I

still feel, those times were much

better than today because we did

not have these goons who threaten

people from their newsrooms

and instigate violence against

them. Can you imagine, what

would have been the role of this

media in a powerful government

of Rajiv Gandhi. Doordarshan

was showing the dead body of

Mrs Gandhi for many days as

people were shouting slogan :

Khoon Ka Badla Khoon se

lenge..

as Indiraji brought colour TV

revolution to India, people

watched the entire thing on their

TV screens and were being fed

with all the sarkaari reports

every moments. It was perhaps

the first 24×7 ‘spectacle’ for the

TV media to extend its outreach

as for a few days newspaper sale

increased and in smaller places

where we used to live, newspaper

would be sold off before

reaching the homes.

There was only doordarshan

and All India Radio. They were

doing their duty but there were

no shouting party spokesperson

inside the studio like what we

are witnessing in these times,

who would have launched a

direct campaign against the

Sikhs. The media that time was

silently and was just doing its

duty as per the government

order. Doordarshan-Akashwani

would stop all the programmes

and we would just listen some

classical music but on Indira

Gandhi’s assassination day, till

the evening 6 pm, everything

was shut. We were depending on

the external sources like BBC

which had declared that she was

shot dead but there was no official

word about it. Though she

was shot at her home in the

morning time around 9 am, the

official announcement of her

death came at 6 pm on radio and

television simultaneously. When

I imagine what would have happened

if Indira ji was in todays

time or if there were all these

24×7 TV channels.

Violence erupted or was made

to erupt by the goons of the

Congress party but it was not

merely an issue of Congress. In

her death, Indira Gandhi had

become or was projected as a

Great Hindu leader killed by the

Sikhs. So subsequent days, we

saw, a ‘Hindu’ outrage, though

we conveniently called it

Congress goons but it was not

so. Congress had become the

Hindu party, a party of the Hindu

sentiments, whose leader was

called and Rajiv Gandhi called

her Bharat Mata in his first

broad-caste to the nation.

The violence or pogrom

whatever we call as the state of

India completely abdicated its

duty. The goons whether

Congress Party or any other

sympathizer, whether Hindus or

not, had complete protection

from the administration and its

police. It was like a ‘national’

‘resolve’ to ‘teach’ Sikh a lesson.

Innocent children lost their parents.

We never saw such brutality

since partition of India.

Butchering of families. The

Home Minister P V Narsimha

Rao sat silently allowing the

goons to do all the things and

police remaining quiet. All over

the country, there was a pattern,

whisper campaign against Sikhs

as if they killed Mrs Gandhi.

This is a serious question to ponder

over. Why we blame the

entire community if the some

crime is done under their name.

Muslims have been punished for

that, Dalits, too and Sikh got

punishment because the murderer

of Indira Gandhi happened to

be Sikh. But the murderer of

Rajiv Gandhi were Hindus while

that of Gandhi were Brahmin but

we never saw that kind of isolation

and condemnation of the

communities. It means, that the

dominant define the discourse

who to vilify and who to glorify.

That is why, Gandhi’s murderers

are still being glorified and nothing

happen to them.

Today when we moan the

brutal murder of Indira Gandhi,

remember her legacy, we can not

keep our eyes shut that the Sikhs

were butchered and murdered in

the aftermath of her assassination

were a complete abdication

of the state Rajdharma. It was a

project Hindu Rashtra, this time

under Rajiv’s Congress where

Sikhs were vilified and Rajiv

became symbol of Hindu

Asmita. If we are living in these

terrible time when Indian state

apparatus has turned brahmanical

then the project started since

the return of Indira Gandhi in

1980. It got strengthened in her

unfortunate assassination in

1984. India is paying a heavy

price today for the games that

the Congress played during this

period in the absence of fighting

the issue ideologically, it tried to

sail through the same boat of

communal polarisation which

resulted in massive mandate for

Rajiv Gandhi but victory of the

Hindu Rashtra. Subsequently,

Rajiv’s flirtation and Congress’s

complete ideological bankruptcy

paved the way for the Hindutva

forces whose cherished dream to

rule India was realised in May

2014 and second mandate of

2019, they have further strengthened

their position. Today is the

day to not merely remember Mrs

Gandhi and her contribution to

our polity but also Congress’es

failure to fight communal forces

ideologically by virtually

becoming the B team of

Hindutva, resulting in the legitimacy

and ascendancy of the hate

mongers in the power structure.

Dalit women prevented from

entering temple in UP district

Bulandshahr : A case of

Dalit women being denied entry

into a temple in Bulandshahr district

of Uttar Pradesh has come

to light with a video of the incident

going viral on social media.

According to informed

sources, the incident took place

on October 25 but the video

went viral on Wednesday.

In the six-minute long video,

a man wearing a black shirt can

be seen standing in front of the

closed gates of a temple while

voices of women can be heard

demanding to know why they

are not being allowed to worship

at the temple.

Other voices can be heard

saying that women also had the

right to worship and would not

leave the temple gates till they

were allowed in. To this, the man

points a finger at the woman and

warns her to talk politely. A

woman is heard saying, "Why

don't you kill us here? We will

die here. Bring lathis... we will

continue sitting here. We will not

leave. Bring the whole village

here. Let them also see."

The man is then heard telling

the women that the property and

the temple belong to 'Thakurs'

who are the upper caste.

"This property belongs to

Thakurs. Brahmins and Thakurs

have been praying here for

years," he says.

The camera then zooms into

the temple and shows a man

wearing a white t-shirt locking

the main door and walking to the

gate. Both men then stand in

front of the gate and stare at their

mobile phones, while the women

vociferously demand to be

allowed to enter the temple.

As the argument continues,

the men become louder and

more forceful in their refusals.

The video shows at least 15

angry and agitated women standing

clustered around the gate,

along with a small group of

school children. Vijender Singh

Valmiki, a community leader

who later complained to the

police on behalf of the women,

said: "These people used to pray

here earlier but last week some

men refused to allow them entry

saying they would not be

allowed because they were

Dalits." The police have registered

a case of assault on

October 25, under the SC/ST Act

against unnamed persons who

assaulted a Dalit man on the

same day that the video was

shot. Bulandshahr Additional

Superintendent of Police Atul

Srivastava said: "We are investigating

and facts are being ascertained

about the video. We will

act further in this case."

01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019

Continue Page 9

Continue Page 21

23

Dushyant Chautala Factor in Haryana...

How is it going to take the minorities and the marginalized along

with it. The non-acceptability of a Dalit president by the dominant Jats

in Haryana reflects the ideological crisis of the Congress party. The

elections show that BJP is not invincible yet it is also time to be alert

all the time particularly the issue of EVMs is not going to die that

soon.And end of the day, political parties must clear their position on

social, economic, cultural, foreign affairs issues and need their effective

propaganda machinery. It cant just respond to the issues but also

clarify various issues. For parties like Congress, it is not merely to condemn

the government but also introspect their own follies in the past.

Unless Congress accept that it did make mistakes and its stand on various

issues remained ambiguous, it wont be able to win the confidence

of minorities and the marginalized. It needs to talk to various social

groups and also allow the other parties to flourish.

One thing is for sure that India cannot be prisoner of a few political

parties and we will have to admit that such a huge country like us, communities

and groups will always attempt to get fair representation and

when bigger national parties fail to provide them fair representations,

they will find their own way and there is nothing wrong. It is for the

parties to develop long term alliances and not merely on the eve of elections.

If we are able to do that, it will help in long term. Is it possible

for Congress and other political parties to build state wise alliances for

the 2024 elections and raise people’s issues both in and outside the

Parliament and assemblies? I am sure, the result can be beyond the

imaginations of the pollsters. The people in this country have from time

to time taught arrogant rulers big lessons and one should not be surprise

watching these results that the most arrogant politicians got humiliated

in the worst form. It is time for all to remain on the ground, raise people’s

issues, stop attempting to speculate results and build alliances. If

each sector work according to the norms and ethics, democracy would

get strengthened which is not merely elections but as a culture which

build modern India based on constitutional ethics and norms.

Dushyant Chautala Factor in Haryana...

Although, all the farmers were fully compensated by the

HUDA as per the officials. In the hope of getting more money

through the court cases, the farmers in connivance with the local

lawyers or property dealers have made HUDA administration

notorious. In addition to that, the Jat and Gujjar big landholders

put pressure socially & politically on the ruling government to

compensate more if they want their votes.

The majority of the residential sectors in Gurugram is under litigation.

The nexus between the lawyers & property dealers have

caused havoc in the life of the plot owners. For instance, Ill-reputed

sector 57 in Gurugram District is again in the headlines because

of litigation between the HUDA and Farmers. 10 years back,

Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) got land from

the farmers and paid full financial compensation to them. After

having full compensation, some farmers filed a court case against

HUDA for more compensation. Under pressure, HUDA sent letters

to the plot owners in Sector 57 Gurugram and demanded

heavy enhancements two times which all the plot owners paid.

HUDA won the case in 2017 from the farmers. After winning

the court case from the farmers, some plot owners were offered

possessions in Sector 57 in 2018. After taking physical possession

from the HUDA administration, some of the plot owners started

construction. As ill-luck have it, the farmers and some unscrupulous,

cunning lawyers provoked the farmers & filed once again a

fresh court case against HUDA in 2019 and the Judge passed the

STAY orders against the whole Sector-57, Gurugram, Haryana.

After stay order by the court, the innocent plot owners are running

from pillar to the post. The officials of the HUDA issued letters to

all the plot owners to stop construction leaving behind all of them

in the lurch. God knows when the Judge will remove this stay

order and the innocent plot owners will resume construction and

fulfill their dream of a sweet home[vii]. The intervention on behalf

of the Khattar Government in the matter did not yield any positive

result to date.

The state of Haryana has been facing great challenges due to

the lethargic & prejudiced attitude of the public system. The general

people in the state are the worst sufferers. Some of the issues

such as the land mafia has been active in the state under the nose

of Khattar government. Youths are frustrated due to the high rate

of unemployment. Corruption is high despite the digitization of

the public system. The touts are active in every government

department of the state. Police administration is found prejudiced.

The attitude of Police officials towards poor, helpless Dalits,

Muslims & Christians is partial. These are some of the burning

issues that need to be addressed on priority. Against this backdrop,

voters of Haryana including poor Dalits, Muslims,Sikhs &

Christians expect of a young, US graduate Dushyant Chautala

with impartial mind and heart to focus on these issues. It is hoped

that Dushyant shall make sincere & honest efforts to provide a

clean and corruption-free administration. I further hope that the

BJP will not disown this young man like Mehbooba Mufti of PDP

(Jammu & Kashmir Peoples Democratic Party).


24 01-11-2019 to 15-11-2019 WORLD

www.theasianindependent.co.uk

Monarch Singge Namgyal's

statue installed in Leh

Leh : An 18-footlong

statue of Singge

Namgyal, the 17th

Monarch of Ladakh,

was inaugurated on

Friday as part of celebrations

of newlyformed

Union

Territory (UT) of

Ladakh.

"In celebration of

the recent UT status

granted to Ladakh,

Hemis Monastery is

offering a new statue

of King Sengey

Namgyal to the people

of the region," the

Gyalwang Drukpa,

the spiritual head of

the Drukpa Lineage

of Vajrayana

Buddhism, tweeted.

"This statue is a

symbol of Ladakh's

history, might, and

identity in remembrance of its

past as great kingdom along the

Silk Road."

The statue was envisioned

by the spiritual head in

December 2017 and was carried

forward by the Hemis

Monastery.

The story of Singge

Namgyal has fascinating beginning.

When Ali Sher Khan

Anchan also known as Ali Mir

of Skardo imprisoned the then

Ladakh Monarch Jamyang

Namgyal during an expedition,

the incident led to the confluence

between these two kingdoms

with the marriage of

Jamgyang Namgyal and Gyal

Khatun, the daughter of Ali

Sher Khan.

This union gave birth to

arguably the most powerful

king of Ladakh, King Singge

Namgyal.

Singge Namgyal was an

admirable leader and overcame

several challenges faced by his

ancestors with his military and

diplomatic skills. Moreover, he

was also a great patron of arts

and a strong adherent and proponent

of Buddha Dhamma.

His contributions to art and

architecture can be witnessed

with the nine-storey rammed

Leh Palace and a number of

monasteries that were built all

over Ladakh.

King Singge was also highly

influenced by Lama Staktsang

Repa, whom he referred to as,

"the Patron Lama of

Ladakhi Kingdom".

King Namgyal's

patronage led to the

establishment of the

Hemis Monastery

with 25 young students

were brought

from Baltistan to

become monks at the

monastery.

One of the most

revered monasteries

of Ladakh, Hemis

Monastery raised

funds for the 18-foot

tall bronze statue of

Singge Namgyal,

which is placed at the

prominent location of

Skyrsags Chowk in

Leh.

The man behind

the masterpiece is the

talented young

Ladakhi artist Tsering

Gyurmet. A culmination of

years of Gyurmet's hardwork,

the statue commemorates the

contributions of Singge

Namgyal in the unification of

Ladakh and flourishment of its

culture and heritage.

With Ladakh being declared

a Union Territory on Thursday,

the statue stands as a reminder

to the people of Ladakh to

regain their sovereignty and

preserve their rich cultural

identity.

Pak invitees to Kartarpur will

have to seek clearance: MEA

New Delhi : Referring to the Congress leader

and former cricketer Navjot Singh Sidhu's

acceptance of the Pakistani invite to the inauguration

of the Kartarpur

corridor, the Ministry of

External Affairs (MEA)

said that the "political

clearance" would have to

be sought for it.

"Those who Pakistan

wants to call have to take

political clearance," MEA spokesperson Raveesh

Kumar said at a briefing, to a question on Sidhu

accepting an invite by Imran Khan to attend the

November 9 inauguration ceremony.

He also said India has given Pakistan a list of

480 pilgrims for the inaugural 'jatha', and is

awaiting clearance from Pakistan.

15-year-old held in Chandigarh on

sexual assault charge

Chandigarh : A 15-year-old

boy was arrested in Chandigarh

for allegedly sexually assaulting a

21-year-old woman on the pretext

of marriage, the police said on

Thursday.

The woman alleged the accused

kept her at a hotel in Mumbai and

physically exploited her. The boy's

family, however, claimed that the

two had eloped and were brought

back from Mumbai by them.

It is learnt that the boy is also

married, a police official said.

UK ELECTIONS :

Farage calls on Johnson

to form ALLIANCE

London : Brexit Party's leader Nigel Farage on Friday called

on British Prime

Minister Boris

Johnson to dump

Brexit deal and

form a "leave

alliance" for the

upcoming elections.

Launching the

Brexit Party's

election campaign

here, Farage said

that bringing political

parties together

was the "only

way" forward,

BBC reported.

Farage warned

Johnson that if he

rejected his offer,

the Brexit Party would field candidates on "every single seat" in

England, Scotland and Wales.

The Conservatives have consistently denied to form an

alliance with the Brexit Party.

Condemning Johnson's Brexit deal, the Brexit Party leader

urged him to drop it "because it is not Brexit".

Farage's statement comes after US President Donald Trump

urged Farage and Johnson to team up as "an unstoppable force".

The British PM negotiated a deal with the European Union

(EU) and tried to get it through the UK Parliament in three days

to pass it before the Brexit deadline of October 31.

While, UK MPs voted it through its first hurdle in the House

of Commons, they voted against the short timetable - leading to

a further delay to the country's departure from the EU, to

January 31, 2020.

Farage has criticised Johnson for failing to deliver on his

promise that the Britain would leave the EU by Oct 31. Instead,

he wants Johnson to pursue a free trade pact with the EU -- similar

to the bloc's deal with Canada -- and to impose a new Brexit

deadline of July 1, 2020 to get it signed off.

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