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Centre warns data commerce companies not to influence elections

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New Delhi, May 10: The central government on Thursday warned online firms involved in the business of data commerce not to use collusive methods to influence elections in the country. 

Addressing at the 15th Asia Media Summit, Electronics and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said “The data must be available but anonymous. All the online companies who are in the business of data privacy or data commerce must understand these nuances”.

“India cannot be the centre of date pilferage. We are strong believers in the freedom of elections and data commerce through collusive methods cannot be used to influence India’s elections,” he added.

Citing an example, Prasad said he had taken a company stand when the social media giant Facebook and data mining firm Cambridge Analytica’s data breach issue came into the limelight last month.

Cambridge Analytica has been accused of harvesting personal information of more than 50 million Facebook users illegally to influence elections in several countries.

Supporting the freedom of press and its prosperity in open society, the IT Minister raised questions on the journalism ethics and the accountability of media.

He stated freedom of press is an important factor in polity and that a free media can prosper only in an open society, but accountability of media is integral to society.

“The ethical journalism in my view is that it should be fair, true and should present both sides properly. Media of today in the garb of sensationalism, paid news, fake news, too much of unravelling insidious practices seem to duck larger issues,” the Minister asserted.

He said the Centre did not want to interfere but those who firmly believe in the freedom of media and insist upon their rights also need to understand that there was something like accountability also. “Ethical journalism flows from those abiding values.”

Speaking about the benefit of digitalisation, Prasad said we have got 1.20 billion Aadhaar cards, the “digital identity to supplement the physical identity.

“We opened over 300 million bank accounts for poor and linked it to Aadhaar. Now, we have started sending funds directly to the bank accounts of poor of various entitlement. And, we have saved Rs 83,000 crore, close to 10 billion dollars, which used to be pocketed by middlemen and fictitious elements”, he added.

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Uttar Pradesh: 8-yr-old raped in Azamgarh village

The girl was rushed to a hospital where her condition was stated to be serious, the police said.

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Azamgarh (UP), Sep 30 : An eight-year-old girl was allegedly raped by a 20-year-old man in a village in Jiyanpur area of the Azamgarh district, police said on Wednesday.

The accused took the girl with himself from her home telling her mother that she would have her bath in his house, the police said, quoting from the complaint lodged by the girl’s mother.

The accused had also taken from the girl’s mother her clothes, the police aid.

But when the child returned from the neighbour’s house, she was writhing in pain and bleeding, the police said.

The girl was rushed to a hospital where her condition was stated to be serious, the police said.

Azamgarh Superintendent of Police Sudhir Kumar Singh said the accused, identified as Danish, has been arrested.

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Uttar Pradesh: 14-year-old raped in Bulandshahr

A report has been lodged against the accused and efforts are on to nab him. The accused will be taken into custody soon, police said.

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Bulandshahr (UP), Sep 30 : A minor girl was allegedly raped by her neighbour in Uttar Pradesh’s Bulandshahr, police said on Wednesday.

Senior Superintendent of Police Santosh Kumar Singh said on Wednesday night, the girl’s father submitted a complaint in this regard, alleging that his 14-year-old daughter was raped by their neighbour Rizwan (20) on Tuesday night.

The victim is undergoing medical treatment. A report has been lodged against the accused and efforts are on to nab him. The accused will be taken into custody soon, police said.

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India

‘No moral right to continue’: Priyanka Gandhi’s scathing attack on Yogi Adityanath after death of Hathras gang-rape victim

The 19-year-old died in a Delhi hospital on Tuesday. The woman was admitted there in a critical condition after being brutally raped by four men in her village in Uttar Pradesh’s Hathras district.

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Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi took on Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath for the death of Hathras rape victim, saying he doesn’t have any moral right to continue as chief minister.

“I was on the phone with the Hathras victim’s father when he was informed that his daughter had passed away. I heard him cry out in despair. He had just been telling me that all he wanted was justice for his child. Last night he was robbed of the chance to take his daughter home for the last time and perform her last rites,” Gandhi said in her first two tweets on the issue on Wednesday.

She also asked Adityanath to resign. “@myogiadityanath RESIGN. Instead of protecting the victim and her family, your government became complicit in depriving her of every single human right, even in death. You have no moral right to continue as Chief Minister,” Gandhi tweeted.

The 19-year-old died in a Delhi hospital on Tuesday. The woman was admitted there in a critical condition after being brutally raped by four men in her village in Uttar Pradesh’s Hathras district.

The incident took place on September 14. She was first admitted to JN Medical College and Hospital in Aligarh, but was shifted to Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital after her condition deteriorated where she breathed her last.

The UP government has been facing flak from Opposition parties over the issue. Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav had said that “no hope” is left from the “insensitive government”.

Reacting to the incident, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) president Mayawati tweeted in Hindi, “The news of the death of the Dalit girl after gangrape in Hathras, UP, is very sad. The government should provide all possible help to the victim’s family and ensure quick punishment to the culprits by prosecuting them in a fast-track court.”

The Congress has questioned the “silence” of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and women leaders of his party and alleged that Uttar Pradesh under the Yogi Adityanath government has become the country’s “crime capital”.

At a press conference, Congress spokesperson Supriya Shrinate alleged that for eight days no gangrape charges were pressed in the matter and that the UP chief minister’s information advisor and Agra Police kept calling the incident “fake news”.

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