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Kerala shutdown over Sabarimala near total

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Kerala Protest

Thiruvananthapuram, Oct 18: The state-wide shutdown called by the Sabarimala Karma Samithi on Thursday saw huge response with near total effect while just a few private vehicles moving on road.

The dawn to dusk shutdown backed by the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance was called against Wednesday’s police attack on protesters who were opposing the entry of women within the age group of 10-50 years to the Lord Ayyappa shrine.

At a few places in Kozhikode, Malappuram and here, protesters stoned buses of the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation following which their operation was suspended.

On the occasion of Mahanavami all state and central government offices, banks and educational institutions were closed.

Shops and markets also remained shut. There were poor attendance at the IT parks here and in Kochi. It was the railway commuters who faced the brunt of the shutdown as they failed to get taxis and public vehicles from the stations.

The temple opened on Wednesday at 5 p.m. for the monthly pujas. It was first day after the Supreme Courts September 28 verdict allowing women of all ages to enter the shrine revoking the traditional ban on all those girls and women who are within the puberty limits.

Traditionalists came up in arms against the new norm as the state government deployed a huge police force to enforce the top court’s order. The temple will remain open till October 22.

IANS

India

Rajya Sabha adjourns Sine Die, eight days ahead of schedule

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Parliament of India
  • Rajya Sabha adjourned sine die. Monsoon Session, that was scheduled to go on till October 1st, cut short in the wake of COVID19 pandemic.
  • The Lok Sabha will be adjourned sine die today, eight days ahead of the scheduled end of the monsoon session.
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Business

Airlines on verge of collapse, may shut if situation doesn’t improve: GoAir to SC

SC deferred the hearing of the case for refund of air tickets booked during lockdown period till September 25

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GoAir

New Delhi: A day after aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) informed the Supreme Court (SC) that passengers who booked tickets during lockdown are eligible for refunds, the government recommended that airlines pay 0.5% interest for delayed refunds.

While both Vistara and AirAsia opposed the levy of interest stating that many of their customers prefer credit shell, country’s largest airline IndiGo said it refunded the tickets for the lockdown period in full.

The government also said it is open to considering the interest of any particular segment of passengers if adversely affected.

New Delhi: A day after aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) informed the Supreme Court (SC) that passengers who booked tickets during lockdown are eligible for refunds, the government recommended that airlines pay 0.5% interest for delayed refunds.

While both Vistara and AirAsia opposed the levy of interest stating that many of their customers prefer credit shell, country’s largest airline IndiGo said it refunded the tickets for the lockdown period in full.

The government also said it is open to considering the interest of any particular segment of passengers if adversely affected.

Meanwhile, GoAir pleaded with the apex court that many airlines were on the brink of collapse and might shut down if If the situation doesn’t improve.

SC has deferred the hearing on airlines’ fare refund case for September 25.

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India

Time magazine lists PM Modi in ‘100 Most Influential People 2020’ but adds a stinging note

While featuring PM Modi in the influential people’s list, Time did not shy away from suggesting that Modi, as India’s PM, had “brought into doubt” India’s secular nature.

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Narendra Modi

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has made it to Time magazine’s ‘100 Most Influential People 2020’ list. PM Modi is the only politician from India to have been featured in the ‘Leaders’ category.

Other world leaders who feature in the Time list include US President Donald Trump; Chinese President Xi Jinping; Joe Biden, presidential challenger to Trump in 2020 US elections; Kamala Harris, US Democratic vice presidential nominee for the 2020 election; Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen; German Chancellor Angela Merkel; and Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

While featuring PM Modi in the influential people’s list, Time did not shy away from suggesting that Modi, as India’s PM, had “brought into doubt” India’s secular nature where “Christians, Muslims, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains and other religious sects – all have abided in India”.

Time noted that “the Dalai Lama (who has spent most of his life in refuge there) has lauded the country as ‘an example of harmony and stability’.”

However, PM Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party, labelled as Hindu-nationalist, has “rejected not only elitism but also pluralism, specifically targeting India’s Muslims,” claims the short write-up on PM Modi in Time, written by editor at large, Karl Vick.

“The crucible of the pandemic became a pretense for stifling dissent. And the world’s most vibrant democracy fell deeper into shadow,” it concludes, seeking to build a narrative on PM Modi’s rule.

Questioning the populist vote which PM Modi and his BJP got in two successive General Elections in 2014 and 2019 – the second one being a bigger mandate – Time argues “free elections only tell who got the most votes” and does not necessarily represent “those who did not vote for the winner”.

It may be recalled here that during his more than six years’ rule so far, PM Modi has stressed on taking all along the path of development with the motto: “Sabka saath, sabka vikas, sabka vishwas,” meaning “together, for everyone’s growth, with everyone’s trust”.

In May last year as well, Time had in an article called PM Modi “India’s Divider in Chief”. However, just weeks later, the magazine published an article titled ‘Modi Has United India Like No Prime Minister in Decades’.

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