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Jamia arrest is to create fear among students: Chidambaram

“We also reiterate that we will not yield to the intimidation of Delhi Police but will continue our fight against the fascist government and it’s genocide enabling laws like CAA/NRC/NPR. We demand the release of all the political prisoners arrested in relation with the anti-CAA/NRC movement,” the statement added.

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chidambaram

New Delhi, May 18 : Former Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram has lashed out at the government for arresting Jamia students and alleged that it is being done to create fear amongst the students so that they don’t participate in any agitation.

Chidambaram, replying to a question during his press conference, said, “It is condemnable, entire case is false, even if you have to identify them you can call them for investigation.”

“This is to put fear in the minds of the students that they will put you in custody. If this is the state of the mind, it is incompatible with democracy,” he added.

Police on Sunday arrested Asif Iqbal Tanha around 8 p.m. from his residence in Delhi. Tanha, hailing from Jharkhand is a final year graduate student in Persian language. Prior to this, police had arrested Meeran Haider and Safoora Zargar and slapped charges under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) against them.

Jamia coordination committee has also issued statement, saying, “In an utter shock and dismay, we learned that one more of our members Asif Iqbal Tanha has been arrested. He was a vocal leader of JCC and a prominent face of anti-CAA protest across India. Police called him first for interrogation, but later produced in front of the magistrate and sent him to Tihar jail in judicial custody.”

The statement said, “He is arrested as per the FIR related to the police action in Jamia Millia Islamia. It seems Delhi police is using another FIR, after its infamous 59/2020, to target the activists in Delhi. Earlier three of our leaders Meeran Haidar, Safoora Zargar and Shifa-ur-Rahman were booked in the FIR 59/2020 and sent to jail.”

“Instead of enquiring the north east Delhi violence and arresting the real culprits, Delhi police is shamelessly witch hunting Jamia student leaders. When all the conspirators and perpetrators of Delhi violence are roaming free, it is our leaders who are being sent to jail and slapped draconian laws. We request all the democratic forces to rise in protest to stop this illegal and revengeful police action and demand the arrest of real culprits behind north east Delhi violence,” said the JCC statement.

“We also reiterate that we will not yield to the intimidation of Delhi Police but will continue our fight against the fascist government and it’s genocide enabling laws like CAA/NRC/NPR. We demand the release of all the political prisoners arrested in relation with the anti-CAA/NRC movement,” the statement added.

Disaster

Cancel final-year exams of central varsities, Kejriwal urges PM

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Arvind Kejriwal Delhi

New Delhi, July 11 : Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to cancel the final-year examinations of Delhi University and other central universities across the country.

“I request the central government and the University Grants Commission to change their guidelines in the larger interest of the students and cancel their final-semester examinations,” Kejriwal wrote in a letter to Modi.

This came after the Delhi government announced cancellation of all examinations, including final-semester examination, in the state universities due to the coronavirus crisis.

“For the sake of our youths, I urge the PM to personally intervene and cancel final- year exams of DU and other central government universities and save the future,” Kejriwal added.

The national capital has state universities such as Delhi Technological University, National Law University, Ambedkar University, Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, among others. Delhi University is a central varsity.

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PUCL moves SC for SIT probe into Vikas Dubey encounter

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Vikas Dubey.

New Delhi, July 11 : A plea has been moved by the People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) in the Supreme Court seeking direction to set up special investigation team, having officers who have not served in Uttar Pradesh, to probe into the encounter deaths of gangster Vikas Dubey and his aides.

The petitioners have also urged the apex court to constitute a committee headed by a retired Supreme Court judge to enquire into the encounters that have been taking place in Uttar Pradesh and also the prevalent criminal-politician nexus in the state.

The petitioner cited the petition filed in May 2018, which took into account the over 1,000 encounters that had taken place, during January 2017 to March 2018, resulting in death of 49 persons and injuries to 370. “During pendency of the petition before this court, the number of encounters increased to 2,000 and deaths to 66 as mentioned in the rejoinder affidavit on October 8, 2018. The number has increased to 5,178 encounters in which 103 persons have been killed and 1,859 have been injured in 2019,” said the plea.

The petitioner said it has taken up the issue pertaining to police encounters, among several other human rights issues, as it defies the rule of law and administration of law enforcing machinery in accordance with the Constitution.

“It is further submitted that police encounter/administrative liquidation is a serious crime – murder/culpable homicide and is an offence against the entire society. If such a crime is committed with the support of the state or where the state condones such an offence, it takes a very serious dimension, questioning the entire rule of law and governance in accordance with the Constitution”, said the plea.

The petitioner contended that the UP government is flouting an earlier judgement of the Supreme Court, and indulging in massive encounters with impunity.

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Monsoon Session may be very short; eye on passing ordinances

Given the huge challenge both LS and RS Secretariats are facing right now to make seating arrangements in Parliament, maintaining social distancing, the monsoon session is likely to be “very short”

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Parliament of India

With the resumption of Parliamentary standing committees, efforts are on to convene the monsoon session of Parliament, with a focus to clear ordinances brought by the Centre. Given the huge challenge both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha Secretariats are facing right now to make seating arrangements in the Parliament, maintaining social distancing, the monsoon session is likely to be “very short”, suggest informed sources.

On June 5, the government brought ordinances that it claimed would be game changers. It amended the six-a-and-a-half decade old Essential Commodities Act, for ease of doing business with an objective to deregulate food items, including cereals, pulses and onions, in bid to raise farmers’ income.

The Centre also brought the Banking Regulation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020 for “better management & sound regulation of Cooperative banks”, as well as the APMC tweaking with a goal of ‘One India, One Agriculture Market’. But the ordinances, that are crucial for Centre’s effort to boost the economy intake of the lockdown slump, need to be passed by Parliament. Monsoon session’s primary goal will be to get these ordinances okayed by the Parliament, at the earliest.

The treasury bench will also be ready to make a statement on the India-China border stand-off, that killed 20 Indian brave hearts, presuming that the opposition will press for it. The Centre may use the Parliament to send a “strong message of unity”, as far as LAC aggression was concerned.

However, given the monumental challenge the Parliament is facing to reconvene, it is unlikely that a detailed session with a full business transaction can take place.

Both the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha secretariats have explored all possibilities including using a substitute venue like Vigyan Bhawan, to ensure seating with “do gaaz ki doori”, but none were big enough to accommodate the entire Indian Parliament, all together.

The capacity constraints have shot down any idea of a larger virtual session. In spite of Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu saying to “scale up capacities for larger virtual Parliament in due course”, Government sources suggest that is not going to happen immediately. Hence, sources say, the Rajya Sabha Secretariat is exploring seating members of the upper house in the house’s chamber as well as the galleries in conformity with the norm of physical distancing and to enable virtual participation of other members from either the Central Hall or Balayogi Auditorium in the Parliament premises. The chamber and the galleries of the Rajya Sabha can accommodate 127 members while adhering to the physical distancing norms.

Meanwhile, “For enabling the viewing of participation of the members from outside the chamber of the House through virtual participation, it has been felt that screens need to be arranged both within the chamber of the House and outside as required,” sources said.

As for the Lok Sabha, the challenge is bigger, given the number of members is much higher than the upper house — 543 to be precise. Given that, Lok Sabha speaker Om Birla has held multiple meetings to brainstorm a solution that government’s need and opposition’s demand alike to bring a monsoon session without subjecting any member to health risks. The budget session this year was cut short abruptly on March 23, after one member Dushyant Singh came in contact with a COVID-19 positive singer. Singh later met other members, causing a sense of panic, with members like Trinamool leader Derek O’ Brien going into self quarantine.

But the treasury bench seems convinced it will find a solution and suggests it does not want to rush without adequate arrangements to keep the health consideration of all members in mind, amid the raging COVID-19 pandemic. The sense of government’s comfort also stems from the fact that the ordinances remain in force for six weeks after the Parliament is reconvened. Once it gathers, it must be approved by both Houses of Parliament for the ordinance to become a law.

So, the government does not find an immediate countdown to start for okaying the ordinances. However, sources in the government say, regardless of that, almost regular meetings are afoot to reconvene the Parliament, this monsoon.

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