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Watch: After failing to exchange old notes, Woman strips outside RBI

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New Delhi, Jan 5: The struggle to get new currency has forced a woman to go topless.  A 30-year old woman on Wednesday stripped outside the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) office while protesting after failing to exchange her old demonetised currency notes from the central bank for the last three days, police said.

The Police informed that the incident held around 12.30 pm when the woman, whose name has been withheld to protect her privacy, and was said to be a resident of Mehrauli in south Delhi, was not allowed to enter the bank.

It is learnt that she has been visiting the RBI from last three days to exchange Rs 5,000 in scrapped notes.

On Wednesday, the woman, who works as a maid, visited the RBI along with her minor child but as she was again not allowed to enter, protested vocally and cursed demonetisation.

“I am disappointed at the misbehaviour of RBI security personnel. When I was cursing the RBI for not allowing me to exchange my savings, the RBI security personnel called local police to keep me away,” she said.

“I asked them why I was not being allowed to exchange my hard-earned little amount of money, the policewomen separated me from my child and took me into their vehicle. I came out from the police vehicle and removed my clothes to mark my protest against this misbehaviour of RBI officers, central government and police administration for separating a mother from her child,” she said.

The woman, who stripped in the presence of large crowd standing to exchange their old currency notes outside RBI, was detained but freed after being taken a little distance away, police said.

Wefornews Bureau

India

NYT scribe recounts being trolled with hatred for slaughter house story

I was operating in a straitjacket and I was ready to get beating. I was not receiving a cool criticism. It is real angry and hatred, saying I am Hinduphobic, racist and The New York times again started attacking the BJP.

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yogi adityanath NYT

New Delhi, May 23 : A senior New York Times journalist on Wednesday said he had to face anger and hatred and was called “Hinduphobic” and “racist” after he did a story on how closure of slaughter houses in Uttar Pradesh may have been the reason for dogs attacks humans in the state.

At a panel discussion on “Journalistic Challenges in Modern Era”, Jeffrey Gettleman, South Asia Bureau Chief for The New York Times, said he was trolled by the readers despite the fact that he had carefully balanced the story by including the other side of it in the write up published on Tuesday.

“I was operating in a straitjacket and I was ready to get beating. I was not receiving a cool criticism. It is real angry and hatred, saying I am Hinduphobic, racist and The New York times again started attacking the BJP.”

He said the news story “Killer dogs take 14 lives. Did closing slaughterhouses play a role?” tried to explain the reason for the attacks by canines in Uttar Pradesh.

Jeffrey said that dogs were initially eating the scraps of meat around these slaughter houses and their closure by “the Hindu rights groups was one of the unintended consequence of the creation of aggressive dogs”.

“That was not me saying, people living around the area said,” he remarked.

The panel also included senior journalist Rajdeep Sardesai who said newsrooms had undergone “McDonaldization”.

“Like a fast burger. One gets it, eats it and forgets.”

Cautioning against the danger of the polarization, Sardesai lamented that those who question were being branded as “presstitutes”.

“Some younger Indians are cheering this off. This makes the future journalists difficult to find the middle path,” he said.

Echoing Gettleman, Sardesai said not all stories contain the other side. However, when he did that “I was accused of being monkey balancer or sold out”. He said journalists in India were in either way in a difficult position. “If I criticize you I am sold out, even if I don’t, I am sold out.”

Looking at the American scribe, he said: “You have one Trump! We have dozens of putative Trumps in this country, each of whom wants to teach the media a lesson.”

/IANS

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Major Gogoi involved in human shield row detained with teenage girl at Srinagar hotel

Police said Major Leetul Gogoi was handed over to his unit and the incident will be investigated by a Special Investigation Team.

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Major Gogoi

Major Leetul Gogoi, the Rashtriya Rifles officer who shot to fame after tying a Kashmiri civilian to the front of his jeep to perceptibly prevent stone-pelting attacks, was detained by the police on Wednesday in circumstances that are still unclear.

Also detained with him was a woman and a local man. The woman was initially suspected to be a minor but the police later confirmed she was over 18 years of age. They, however, did not share details on her age.

According to the police, they were summoned to Grand Mamta Hotel, where Gogoi had booked a room in his own name (the booking had been done online). The two locals came to the hotel and asked to go up to Gogoi’s room and got into an altercation with the hotel staff when they were not allowed. The hotel staff called the police.

Gogoi has been released and has rejoined his unit, police said, adding that the two locals were still being questioned.

“A police party was deputed to the hotel, and it surfaced that a woman and a man, Sameer Ahmed of Budgam, had come to see some person in the hotel. The hotel reception didn’t allow them to meet the person. All three were brought to the police station,” said a police spokesperson.

He added that they later learnt that the woman had come to meet an army officer.

North Srinagar’s superintendent of police Sajad Ahmad Shah declined to name the army officer, but the hotel management said the booking was in the name of Leetul Gogoi, a resident of Tinsukia, Assam. “What we know is that a man and a woman had come to meet him. The hotel staff did not allow them, leading to an altercation,’’ Shah added.

“The room was booked online. A person came along with a local girl and sought (to go to) the room. Our hotel manager asked him for his identity and the identity of the girl. The girl was a local and according to our hotel policy we don’t provide rooms to local unmarried couples,’’ said the hotel owner, Manzoor Ahmad.

A person familiar with the matter said that Gogoi claimed he had booked the room to meet with a “source”, although this is highly irregular and not in keeping with army procedures. Hindustan Times couldn’t independently confirm this.

It is not clear whether Gogoi knew the woman he was meeting.

An Army spokesman declined to comment, saying the details of the incident were being ascertained.

Last April, during by-elections for the Srinagar Lok Sabha seat, Major Gogoi had tied a civilian, Farooq Ahmad Dar, to a bonnet of his jeep as a human shield to deter stone-pelters from targeting his troops. The incident led to a massive human rights controversy. Army Chief General Bipin Rawat awarded Gogoi a commendation card for his “sustained efforts” on counter-insurgency operations.

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Maldives more inclined towards China: Navy chief

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Navy chief Sunil Lanba

New Delhi, May 23 : Maldives is a “challenge” for India at the moment as the current government in the island nation is more inclined towards China, Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba said today, indicating that the ties between New Delhi and Male are yet to reach a level of normalcy.

Lanba, however, added that patrolling of the Maldives Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) by the Indian Navy has again commenced and that India would continue to work with the government of the archipelago nation.

He also said there is no necessity to get a military dimension to the Quad involving India, the US, Australia and Japan.

“Maldives is a challenge at the moment. The present government in Maldives is more inclined towards China. The constitution has been tweaked and some islands have been given to the Chinese for development. There is no news at the moment of any listening post in the Maldives. There is some development that is going on,” Lanba said in response to a question at an event at the Vivekananda Foundation International.

India’s ties with Maldives nose-dived after it criticised the Abdulla Yameen government for imposing a 45-day emergency in the archipelago nation earlier this year.

During the crisis, India had ignored calls for military intervention from the opposition parties in the island nation.

The influence of China on Maldives, an island nation in the Indian ocean, considered a backyard of India, has been growing and it is seen as a concern in New Delhi.

Maldives neither participated in the multi-national ‘MILAN’ naval conclave, a congregation of littoral navies conducted biennially by the Indian Navy at the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, which was held in mid-March this year nor did its defence minister lead his country’s delegation to take part in the DefExpo2018.

“We (India) have an EEZ patrolling (exercise) that we regularly do with Maldives. The one (exercise) previously held had been called off by the Maldivian government, but that has been recommenced. We continue to train their personnel. We just finished a special forces training camp. We will continue to work with the Maldivian government,” Lanba said.

Responding to another question on the Quad, the Navy chief said it was a discussion forum for international good order and peace and following the norms of the United Nations Convention on the Law Of the Sea (UNCLOS).

“We are not going down that route. I don’t think there is a necessity to get a military dimension to the Quad,” he said.

The Quad is also seen as a move to counter China in the Indo-Pacific region where Beijing has been trying to spread its influence.

The meeting was held in Manila in November last year, which was attended by leaders of the four countries.

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