DELHI RIOTS: INFLAMMATORY CONTENT ON FB WAS UP 300%

Internal Facebook documents have shown that rumours and calls to violence had spread on WhatsApp in late February 2020 during the Delhi riots, the Wall Street Journal reported. Facebook’s documents had shown that inflammatory content was up 300% above previous levels in the months after December 2019, the report said. The researchers found that there was content that can incite violence, including posts that compared Muslims to pigs or dogs, and claiming that the “Quran calls for men to rape their female family members”. This content was from two groups with ties to the BJP. The Wall Street Journal also referred to another report called ‘Adversarial Harmful Networks: India Case Study’ which reportedly found that content posted by those individuals, groups or pages related to the RSS are “never flagged” because Facebook does not have the systems to detect content in Hindi and Bengali.

IMAM ALLEGEDLY FORCED TO CHANT JAI SHRI RAM IN GURGAON

Two people were arrested after an Imam was allegedly threatened and forced to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’ in Gurugram on October 22 over conducting Friday prayers at a nearby locality every week, a report said on October 25. Friday prayers have been facing disruptions and interruptions at several locations in Gurugram for the past few weeks by right-wing groups. The alleged attack on the 40-year-old Imam Abdul Hasib Misbah took place in Sector 39 of Gurugram around 11 pm on October 22. “I was returning home after some personal work. A few men followed me and threatened me with my life if namaz was held in Sector 40. I started walking away but one of them held my hand and asked me to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram.’ According to the FIR filed, Misbah was allegedly threatened by one Deepak Saini and Akash against conducting Friday prayers in Sector 40. Misbah also stated that he fears for his family.

KERALA MOVES SC OVER QUASHING MINORITY SCHOLARSHIP

Challenging the Kerala High Court’s order which quashed the government scheme to provide minority scholarship to Muslims and Christians in 80:20 ratio, the State of Kerala has filed a Special Leave Petition in the Supreme Court. On May 28, a division bench of the Kerala High Court had set aside the 80:20 minority scholarship scheme, observing that the state has to treat both the minority communities equally. The High Court had further directed that the minority scholarship must be distributed among the notified minorities in accordance with their population proportion as per the latest census. Terming the High Court directions to be “irrational” and “erroneous”, the State Government in its petition stated that the minority scholarship scheme was introduced on the basis of the reports of Justice Rajinder Sachar Committee and Paloli Mohammad Kutty Committee (which was constituted by the State Government subsequent to Sachar Committee report) regarding the educational backwardness in the Muslim community.

MOB CHANTS ANTI-MUSLIM SLOGANS, OPPOSES HOTEL’S OPENING

A 60 plus-year-old man shouted that Muslims should be beggars, not hotel owners, The Wire reported on October 27. “This is my country. America is not my country. If Muslims want to live in my country, they will have to say ‘Jai Shri Ram’. Whenever we ask them to”, he said, not taking into consideration that his son who lives in the US works for a Muslim-owned company as he furiously shouted anti-Muslim slogans. There were 100-odd people who protested at Anand in Gujarat on October 26. The target of their ire was Hotel Blueivy. Two of the hotel’s three owners are Muslims. The group reportedly sang Ram Bhajans, Ram Dhoons and sprinkled Ganga jal to “purify” the area. “The hotel has to go,” Binaben Patel reportedly said. “This is a Hindu area. This hotel is owned by Muslim[s]. It is a blot on our Hindu culture to have this hotel here,” he allegedly said.

FAIZABAD RAILWAY JUNCTION TO BE RENAMED

The Uttar Pradesh government on October 23 announced that the Faizabad Railway Junction will be renamed to Ayodhya Cantonment. “The Government of India has approved the decision of renaming Faizabad Railway Station as Ayodhya Cantt,” a statement from the chief minister’s office read. “Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath has given his approval to issue the notification.” Faizabad Railway Junction, which is close to the Ayodhya Junction railway station, was roped in for development by the Uttar Pradesh government to bear the increase in tourism, The Indian Express reported. In November 2018, The Government of UP had renamed Faizabad district to Ayodhya. In June that year, it had renamed the Mughalsarai railway station to Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhyay station.

POLICE TO INVOKE GOONDA ACT AGAINST YATI NARSINGHANAND

Ghaziabad Police are reported to have started proceedings to invoke Goonda Act against the head priest of Dasna Devi temple Yati Narsinghanand Saraswati for his anti-social activities and making anti-religious remarks. Yati Saraswati, who has been openly communal in his public statements targeting Muslims, was appointed ‘Mahamandaleshvar’ of Juna Akhara barely a week after he had alleged a 10-year old boy, who entered the temple mistakenly, a ‘trained killer who had been doing recce to kill him’. The Dasna Devi temple, of which Yati is head priest, has a banner at the gate prohibiting entry of Muslims. He was also booked around two months ago for derogatory remarks against women.

Image with caption: Kashmiri girl Tajamul Islam wins gold in World Kickboxing Championship

TAJAMUL ISLAM WINS GOLD IN WORLD KICKBOXING CHAMPIONSHIP

Tajamul Islam has become the first Kashmiri girl to have represented India and win gold medal in the under-14 age category in World Kickboxing Championship held at Cairo in Egypt on October 22. The 13-year-old girl had defeated the Argentinian player Lalina in the final of the World Kickboxing Championship. She had represented India in Italy in 2016 too, in the under-9 category. Born in Tarkpora, a remote village in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district, Tajamul is studying in Class 7 of Army Goodwill School in Bandipora. She got into kickboxing in 2014 when she joined a local academy, which trains young boys and girls in martial arts in Bandipora. “Now I am a two-time World Kickboxing Champion, with no words to express my happiness….We should encourage girls; they can do anything. My aim is to represent India at the Olympics,” Tajamul Islam was reported as saying.

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