CDS GEN BIPIN RAWAT, HIS WIFE, 11 OTHERS KILLED IN AIR CRASH

Chief of Defence Staff Gen. Bipin Rawat, his wife Mrs. Madhulika Rawat and 11 other personnel died after the Indian Air Force helicopter Mi-17V5 they were travelling in crashed near Coonor near Tamil Nadu’s Nilgiri hill district on December 8. An investigation in the tragic crash has been ordered. The passengers on board besides Gen Bipin Rawat and his wife, were Brigadier L.S. Lidder (defence assistant to the CDS), Lieutenant Colonel Harjinder Singh (special officer to the CDS), PSOs Naik Gursewak Singh, Naik Jitendra Kumar, Lieutenant Naik Vivek Kumar, Lieutenant Naik B Sai Teja, and Havildar Satpal. There were five crew members. Wing commander Prithvi Singh Chauhan was the pilot of the helicopter. Jamaat-e-Islami Hind joined the leaders who mourned the demise of  Gen Bipin Rawat. In a Tweet, the Jamaat said: “We express our deep condolences on the tragic death of Chief of Defence Staff Gen Rawat along with his wife and other personnel. We are with the bereaved families and with the nation mourning the tragic death. #BipinRawat”

JIH EXPRESSES SHOCK OVER CIVILIAN DEATHS IN NAGALAND

Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) has expressed shock and concern over the civilian deaths in Nagaland.  In a statement on December 6, JIH Vice President Prof. Mohammad Salim Engineer said: “We are shocked to hear the deaths news of more than 15 unarmed civilians and one Army personnel in Tiru area near Oting Village, Mon District of Nagaland. We mourn the loss of life and share the grief with their relatives and near ones. We hope the high level enquiry announced by the government will reveal the truth about the incident and will not spare anybody guilty of these killings. The incident also shows the failure of our intelligence apparatus. We demand reasonable compensation to the families of the deceased. The JIH feels that it is very important for the Army to be extremely careful and sensitive while dealing with civilians in an area under their control for restoring or administering law and order. There should be strict compliance to the guidelines on dealing with civilians during some suspected activity. We hope these incidents are not repeated and justice is ensured to the bereaved families.”

ANTI-LYNCHING BILL LIKELY TO BE TABLED IN JHARKHAND ASSEMBLY

To deter incidents of mob assaults and lynching, which has been rising in the tribal State, the Jharkhand Assembly is likely to introduce an anti-lynching Bill in its upcoming session, that proposes capital punishment for those lynching individuals, besides provisions for imprisonment for injuring a person and stiff penalties for participating in a lynch mob. The Jharkhand (Prevention of Lynching) Bill, 2021 is likely to come up in the ensuing Session of Jharkhand Assembly from December 16 to 22, a report said on December 9. The proposed Bill provides for punishment “with death sentence or rigorous imprisonment for life and with fine which shall not be less than ten lakh rupees” in case of death of the victim. West Bengal and Rajasthan Assemblies have already passed anti-lynching legislation.

DALIT MAN KILLED FOR ‘EATING WITH UPPER CASTE PEOPLE’

Ramesh Ram, a 45-year Dalit, breathed his last after he was allegedly beaten up by a mob at a wedding at a village in Nainital district for having dinner with upper caste people. Ramesh, who ran a tailoring shop in Champawat’s Pati block, was found with injury marks on his head and other parts of the body on November 30, a night after he went to the wedding. Subsequently, villagers rushed him to the community health centre in Lohaghat town of Champawat. He was later referred to Dr Sushila Tiwari Medical College and Hospital in Haldwani, where he succumbed to his injuries. His wife, Tulsi Devi, alleged that her husband was thrashed by a group of people at the wedding who objected to the fact that he was sitting and having dinner along with men.

SHARJEEL IMAM GRANTED BAIL IN 2019 JAMIA VIOLENCE CASE

A Delhi Court on December 9 granted bail to Sharjeel Imam in a case concerning the violence in Jamia Millia Islamia on December 13 and 14, 2019. Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Dinesh Kumar granted bail to Sharjeel considering the fact that he was not arrested in the matter during investigation. Recently, another city Court had denied him bail in a 2019 case alleging that he delivered provocative speeches which led to Delhi Riots though the Court observed that the evidence against him was “scanty and sketchy”. In another development, another city Court had reserved order on the bail plea moved by Sharjeel Imam in relation to the allegedly inflammatory speeches made by him in AMU and JMI. However, the Allahabad High Court last month granted him bail in a sedition case registered against him in Aligarh for allegedly delivering an ‘anti-national speech’ at AMU.

SC STAYS PROCEEDINGS AGAINST 2 WOMEN JOURNALISTS

The Supreme Court on December 8 stayed all proceedings against two women journalists questioned by Tripura Police for reporting on recent communal violence in the state. Women journalists Sammriddhi Sakunia and Swarna Jha from the HW News Network – were named in two FIRs filed by Tripura police alleging “spreading communal disharmony” following their reporting on the communal violence in the state, NDTV reported. The apex court halted all proceedings in both FIRs and issued a notice to Tripura Police. Justice Chandrachud was part of the three-member bench hearing this matter; the other two were Justice Surya Kant and Justice Vikram Nath.

Image with caption: Food carts being removed in Ahmedabad in November. Photo: Indian Express

GUJARAT HC SLAMS CIVIC BODY ON REMOVAL OF FOOD CARTS

Hearing a plea by 25 street vendors that the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) had seized their carts following objections from councillors to the sale of non-vegetarian items, the Gujarat High Court on December 9 came down heavily on the AMC and instructed it to consider the cases “as expeditiously as possible” if approached by the petitioners within 24 hours for release of their goods. During the hearing, Justice Biren Vaishnav asked: “What hurts the municipal corporation?” Addressing the government counsel, the court said: “What is your problem? You don’t like non-veg food, that is your lookout. How can you decide what I eat outside? Tomorrow you will decide what I should eat outside the house? Call the corporation commissioner and ask him what he is doing. Tomorrow they will say I should not have sugarcane juice because it causes diabetes? Or coffee (because it) is bad for health?”

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