Hundreds of Hindutva extremists affiliated with BJP have taken a public oath to kill religious minorities and convert India into a Hindu nation. In a video that has gone viral, Suresh Chavhanke, the editor-in-chief of Sudarshan News, a television channel, is seen administering an oath to a group of people to “die for and kill” to make India a Hindu nation. The event is said to have been organised by Hindu Yuva Vahini, founded by Yogi Adityanath, chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, on December 19. “We take an oath and make a resolution that till our last breath, we shall fight, die for and if need be, kill, to make this country a Hindu rashtra,” Chavhanke said. Those present around him repeated his statements. At a separate event held in Uttarakhand’s Haridwar city between December 17 and December 19, a gathering of Hindu extremists has openly called for raising a Hindu army to commit a genocide by killing two million Muslims and asked Hindus to buy weapons. President of Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind (JUH) Maulana Mahmood A. Madani on December 23 condemned the government’s inaction over the open calls for violence against the Muslim community in India. Demands are also mounting to arrest these extremists.


An all-party meeting on December 21, convened by the state government in the wake of the recent killings of SDPI’s KS Shan and BJP functionary Ranjith Sreenivas unanimously condemned the murders and urged every political party to maintain peace. Amid criticism from the opposition over the alleged lapses on the part of the state police, the government said those involved in the killings will be rounded up and brought to justice. While SDPI state secretary Shan was killed by a gang allegedly related to RSS on Saturday (December 18) night while he was on his way back home, the BJP OBC Morcha state secretary, Sreenivas was hacked to death in the presence of his family by some assailants in his house on Sunday (December 19) morning. Vijay Sakhare, who is heading the Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the two separate cases, said all aspects including the conspiracy angle would be investigated after the culprits are identified.


The recently-inaugurated International Arbitration and Mediation Centre (IAMC), Hyderabad, received its first case. The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), Hyderabad Bench, referred six cases relating to the Sanghi Brothers dispute. Chief Justice of India Justice N.V. Ramana had inaugurated IAMC on December 18. The disputes have been pending since 2008. The Tribunal, after taking the consent of the parties and with the able assistance of the respective counsel, referred the matter for resolution to IAMC.

It is a case of dispute between the members of the Sanghi family which has resulted in the filing of a petition under sections 397 and 398 of the Companies Act 1956. IAMC, the brainchild of Supreme Court Chief Justice N.V. Ramana, was set up by a trust in Hyderabad. It will operate from two floors of a multi-storied building in the Financial District, Gachchibowli. Eventually, it will get its own building for which land has been allotted in Puppalaguda, nearly 12 km from Gachchibowli.


Hindutva activists allegedly barged into a school in Pataudi town of Haryana’s Gurugram district on December 24 and disrupted prayers on Christmas eve. In one of the videos, a man is seen telling a group of children: “We do not disrespect Jesus…But I want to tell these children, the next generation, that do not get lured by any religion, or else India’s culture will get destroyed. You need to take resolution to protect it…Take that resolution and chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’. In another video, a group of men is seen chanting “Jai Shri Ram” slogans. The police said it verified the authenticity of one of the videos of the incident after it went viral. “It seems the group was told this was only a Christmas celebration and they returned thereafter,” the police officer added. “No complaint has been filed. Everything is peaceful.” A local pastor however reportedly said that the incident was scary as women and children were present. “The nuisance is increasing with each passing day… It is an infringement of our right to pray and religion,” the pastor said.


India has made it to the Academy of Motion Picture’s documentary shortlist for the Oscars, with directors Rintu Thomas and Sushmit Ghosh’s Writing with Fire, a documentary on Dalit women journalists running a newspaper. However, the celebrated Tamil film Koozhangal, which was India’s official entry for Best Film, has been dropped from the final list. Writing with Fire follows a group of journalists in Uttar Pradesh, who formed the first Indian all-woman newspaper and online media portal. Named Khabar Lahariya, the news portal offers the women an opportunity to painstakingly document the struggles of their local communities including poverty, rape, endemic corruption and other issues. The documentary focuses on three women who work there, including chief reporter Meera, young recruit Shyamkali and Suneeta. It takes an intimate look at their lives, from the struggles of reporting dangerous and often life-threatening stories as women who are also Dalits, untouchable under the caste hierarchy, and their attempts to balance their career ambitions with the struggles of family and poverty.


Tuba Rukaiah of Kerala has won the top award for Arabic calligraphy competition organised by the Embassy of Saudi Arabia on the International Arabic Day celebrations in in New Delhi. The competition was organised in two phases. In the first phase, two students each from Islamic higher educational institutions across the country participated online. The five selected candidates were invited for the final round held at the Centre for Information Technology, Jamia Millia Islamia on December 18. The entry of Tuba Rukaiya, a student of Al Jamia Al Islamia, Shantapuram, Kerala, was adjudged the best one and awarded the first prize in the Arabic calligraphy competition. Daughter of Bashir Muhiuddin-Jazeela CK Capple, Tuba Rukaiya was handed over the first prize by Ustad Majid bin Abdul Rahman Al Utaabi.

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