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Muslim family on board train in UP assaulted

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In what seems to be yet another brazen hate crime, a Muslim family of ten people on board a train was attacked by a mob near Mainpuri in Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday.

According to The Times of India, the family — which included women, children, elderly and a teenager with disability — was beaten up and abused by the mob on board the Shikohabad-Kasganj passenger train. The victims have alleged they were targetted because they “appeared different”.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

According to the report, which quoted one of the victims, a group of five men attacked the family first. “Later, when the train was about to reach Nibkarori station, the youths stopped the train by pulling its chain and called up some of their friends, who arrived on motorbikes. Then, some more men, who were armed with iron rods and sticks, attacked us,” the report quoted the victim as saying.

Times Now further reported that the women in the family were also allegedly molested.

While four of the family members suffered fractures, almost all of them suffered internal stomach injuries.

According to another report in The Hindu, the Government Railway Police (GRP) filed a case after the video of the assault went viral. Three men were detained.

Footage from the video broadcasted on news channels shows some youths banging the train coach from outside and eventually jumping inside the train from the emergency window by breaking the glass panel.

This incident brings back horrific memories of the lynching of a Muslim youth on board a Mathura-bound train in Haryana.

On 22 June, Junaid (17) was stabbed to death while his brothers – Hashim and Sakir – were injured by a mob which also allegedly hurled slurs against them on board the Delhi-Mathura passenger train between Ballabgarh and Mathura stations.

The incident took place as a family of five was returning home after Eid shopping in Delhi when an altercation over seats turned communal and triggered the attack.

According to the police, it was a group of 15-20 people which had boarded the Mathura-bound train. As the argument turned communal, they had reportedly called the Muslim family “anti-nationals” and “beef eaters”, before throwing their skull caps on the floor, grabbing their beards, and taunting them with abuses.

India

OP Rawat takes charge as new Chief Election Commissioner

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New Delhi, Jan 26: Om Prakash Rawat on Tuesday took charge as the new Chief Election Commissioner (CEC), succeeding Achal Kumar Jyoti to the post.

Rawat will serve a tenure of almost a year till his retirement in December 2018.

He has previously held various key portfolios at the Central government and in the states. He was also deputed to South Africa in May 1994 as the United Nations’ election observer to chalk out the first post-apartheid elections there.

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Karni Sena threats force cancellation of ‘Padmaavat’ bookings in Bihar

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Padmaavat

Patna, Jan 23: Shree Rajput Karni Sena activists have forced cinema halls to stop advance bookings for “Padmaavat”, officials on Tuesday said.

In Patna, online bookings for the movie were stopped following protest and threat by Karni Sena’s activists.

“Fear of Karni Sena is such that Cinepolis has not only stopped online booking of ‘Padmaavat’. It cancelled 50 bookings after a group of Karni Sena activists protested and threatened the staff members,” an official of district administration said.

Three other cinema halls, set to screen the controversial movie, have so far not informed people about advance booking for the Sanjay Leela Bhansali directorial.

In Gaya district, all cinema hall owners have decided not to show “Padmaavat” fearing violence by Karni Sena supporters.

In Bhagalpur and Purnea districts also cinema halls have decided not to screen the film.

Karni Sena’s state president Dhirender Singh said cinema halls should not to show “Padmaavat”, respecting the sentiments of the people.

In the last 10 day, activists of the Rajput organisation, which has been at the forefront of anti-“Padmaavat” protest, have staged demonstrations across the state.

Last week, some activists attacked a cinema hall in Muzaffarpur district, tore posters of “Padmaavat” and threatened to set ablaze the hall if the film is screened, police said.

The police is, however, yet to act against those who indulged in the vandalism.

According to district officials, the police would scan the CCTV footage.

The JD(U)-BJP government led by Nitish Kumar has so far not decided whether the movie will release in the state.

IANS

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No ban on ‘Padmaavat’, Supreme Court clears pan-India Jan 25 release

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Padmaavat

New Delhi, Jan 23: The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked all states to comply with its order not to stand in the way of the release of controversial film “Padmaavat” as it dismissed last ditch efforts by Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh governments to block its January 25 release.

A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice A.M. Khanwilkar and Justice D.Y. Chandrachud said: “People must understand that the Supreme Court has passed an order and it must be complied with.”

“Our order is to be complied with by one and all. A few hundred people come on the street and create a law and order situation demanding ban. That can’t be accepted,” Misra said.

“You can advise them not to watch the movie if they don’t like it. We will not modify our order,” the Chief Justice told Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who tried to flag the law and order situation as a ground for blocking release of the film.

The court also dismissed a plea by Akhil Bharatiya Karni Mahasangh, saying: “We are not inclined to modify order” — clearing the decks for the release of the Sanjay Leela Bhansali directorial.

Admitting that maintaining law and order was the state’s obligation, Mehta appearing for the Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh governments urged the court to appreciate the ground situation and threat to breach of peace.

“You can’t make virtue of creating trouble. You can’t first create trouble and then make a virtue of it,” said Justice Chandrachud.

Seeking clarification, Mehta said a situation could arise where after the release of the film, there could be trouble in some parts.

“Let the state honour this order. Rest we will deal with when it comes to it,” Justice Khanwilkar said.

IANS

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