Violent Citizenship Protests In Delhi, 3 Buses Torched

Three Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) buses were set on fire near Bharat Nagar area as demonstrations against Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in the national capital turned violent on Sunday.

Huge plumes of smoke were seen billowing out of the buses as flames engulfed them.

Protesters also vandalised a fire tender that was sent to douse the fire and also injured two firemen inside the vehicle.

“One fire tender which was rushed to douse bus fire stopped and damaged by the students. Two firemen were also injured,” said Delhi Fire Service (DFS), Director, Atul Garg.

Damage to other buses and vehicles was also caused by the protestors. Police have, meanwhile, taken control of the situation and fire tenders have been rushed to control the damage caused in different areas.

Earlier today, protestors, including students of Jamia Milia Islamia University, had carried out demonstrations in the Kalindi Kunj area against the CAA.

The Delhi Traffic Police had closed the roads on which protests were being held in the national capital and kept on informing the public about the situation on the roads which were blocked by the protestors.

“Traffic movement is closed from Sarita Vihar to Kalindi Kunj due to protest/demonstration at Shaheen Bagh. Traffic is diverted from Sarita Vihar towards Road no 13A and from Apollo to Road no 13,” the tweet from the official handle of the Delhi Traffic Police read.

“Mathura Road opposite New Friends Colony both carriageways have been blocked by demonstrators,” another tweet by the Traffic Police read.

Earlier, scores of students from the city’s Jamia Millia Islamia staged a protest against the amended Citizenship Act here on Saturday.

A day earlier on Friday, students protest left as many as 12 policemen injured.

According to police, the protestors pelted stones at policemen who were deployed to control the situation.

The CAA seeks to grant Indian citizenship to refugees from Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Parsi and Christian communities fleeing religious persecution from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh and who entered India on or before December 31, 2014.

(ANI)

Uddhav Denies Differences In Maharashtra Coalition

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday said there were no differences between the parties in his coalition government and expressed the hope that his government will be able to make the citizens proud.

“The country is watching that the three parties are together, the leaders are united and so are the workers. I do not have much experience in politics but with the wishes of the people we will run the government for 50 years,” Thackeray said at a public rally here.

It started raining towards the end of the Chief Minister’s speech, which Thackeray, termed as an “ominous sign” from the heavens.

There had been rumours of a rift in the coalition after Congress MP Rahul Gandhi’s remarks targeting Hindu ideologue Vinayak Damodar Savarkar.

In a stern message to ally Congress, Shiv Sena on Saturday said that it will not compromise with its stand on the Hindu ideologue, whom it described as a “God-like figure”.

Hours after former Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s statement on Savarkar, Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said the Hindu ideologue had also a major contribution in the freedom movement like Jawaharlal Nehru and Mahatma Gandhi.

“Every such God-like figure should be respected. There is no compromise on it,” he added.

(ANI)

26 Army Columns Deployed As Anti-CAB Protests Rage On

Amid protests in the northeastern states over the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019, 26 Army columns have been deployed in Assam to support the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) to handle the situation there.

As many as 26 Indian Army columns have been deployed in Assam to support the CAPF, Indian Army sources said on Friday.

The strength of one column is about 70 personnel of all ranks.

Two people died in protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019, on Thursday. The suspension of mobile Internet services was extended for another 48 hours in 10 districts of Assam.

The administration had suspended mobile Internet services for 24 hours on Wednesday in 10 districts of the state — Lakhimpur, Tinsukia, Dhemaji, Dibrugarh, Charaideo, Sivasagar, Jorhat, Golaghat, Kamrup (metro) and Kamrup.

Meanwhile, Assam Rifles is managing the situation in the restive areas of Assam and Tripura.

The Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 seeks to grant Indian citizenship to refugees from Hindu, Christian, Sikh, Buddhist and Zoroastrian communities fleeing religious persecution from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh and who entered India on or before December 31, 2014.

(ANI)

Lok Sabha Passes 14 Bills, Rajya Sabha 15 In Winter Session

Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi on Friday informed media that a total of 14 Bills were passed in the Lok Sabha and 15 were passed in the Rajya Sabha during the recently concluded Winter Session of the Parliament.

“In the winter session, Lok Sabha passed 14 bills and the Rajya Sabha passed 15 bills. Productivity was 116 per cent in Lok Sabha and 100 per cent in Rajya Sabha,’ he said while speaking to media in New Delhi.

Notably, one of the major Bill which was passed in this Parliament session was the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2019.

The contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 became an Act after President Ram Nath Kovind on Thursday gave his assent to it.

The Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 makes way for granting Indian citizenship to non-Muslim refugees from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.

With the government putting its weight behind it, the Bill easily sailed through both the Houses of Parliament. It was passed by Rajya Sabha on Wednesday and the Lower House on Monday.

According to the Act, members of the Hindu, Christian, Sikh, Buddhist and Zoroastrian communities, who have come from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh till December 31, 2014, and were facing religious persecution there, will not be treated as illegal immigrants but will be given Indian citizenship.

(ANI)

Boris Wins Majority, To Speed Up Brexit Process

Incumbent UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party on Friday secured a majority in the House of Commons, winning 329 seats so far in 2019 general elections, well ahead of Labour’s 198 seats.

The Liberal Democrats have won 8 seats, while the Scottish National Party posted big gains in Scotland, with 45 seats, CNN reported.

“I want to thank the people of this country for turning out to vote in a December election, which we didn’t want to call but which I think has turned out to be a historic election,” Johnson said.

A victory for incumbent Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the Conservatives would mean that they will plough ahead with the Brexit, dashing all chances of a second referendum over the issue.

This was Britain’s third general election in a little more than four years, and the second since the June 2016 Brexit referendum.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday congratulated his British counterpart Boris Johnson on his Conservative Party’s victory in the 2019 general elections and said that he looks forward to working with him for closer India-UK ties.

“Many congratulations to PM @BorisJohnson for his return with a thumping majority. I wish him the best and look forward to working together for closer India-UK ties,” Modi tweeted.

Johnson’s Conservative Party on Friday secured a majority in the House of Commons. The victory would mean that they will plough ahead with the Brexit, dashing all chances of a second referendum over the issue.

This was Britain’s third general election in a little more than four years, and the second since the June 2016 Brexit referendum.

(ANI)

Trinamool’s Mohua Mitra Moves SC On Citizenship Bill

Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Mahua Moitra on Friday moved the Supreme Court seeking an urgent listing of her petition challenging the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019.

Moitra’s counsel sought an urgent listing of the petition following which the apex court asked them to go to the mentioning officer.

Two NGOs, Rihai Manch, and Citizens Against Hate, also filed a joint petition in the top court challenging the validity of the Citizenship Amendment Act.

“By introducing a religion test in India’s citizenship law, the Amendment strikes a body blow to the basic structure of India’s constitution, specifically its non-denominational character; and is manifestly arbitrary, constitutionally immoral, both in letter and in spirit,” the petition filed through advocate Fauzia Shakil states.

Fazli Ahmed, General Secretary of Jan Adhikar Party, also approached the court seeking quashing of the Act by stating that it violates the basic structure of the Constitution.

“Equality before the law means the State will treat every class of persons without discrimination. The equal protection of law means the State will not frame laws or rules that discriminate between two persons,” the petitioner stated.

On Thursday, the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) also filed a petition questioning the legality of the Act.

The plea stated that the law should be struck down for violating the fundamental right to equality under Article 14 of the Constitution.

Meanwhile, the Kerala Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala has also decided to join the CAB case in Supreme Court because CAB is violation of the Constitution.

“People of Kerala are against Citizenship Amendment Act”, he said.

The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, which was passed by the Parliament earlier this week and has now become the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 following assent from President Ram Nath Kovind.

According to the Act, members of the Hindu, Christian, Sikh, Buddhist and Zoroastrian communities who have come from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh till December 31, 2014, and facing religious persecution there will not be treated as illegal immigrants but given Indian citizenship.

(ANI)

Japanese PM Shinzo Abe Postpones Visit To India

India and Japan have decided to defer the visit of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to a mutually convenient date in the near future, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said on Friday.

“With reference to the proposed visit of Japanese PM @AbeShinzo to India, both sides have decided to defer the visit to a mutually convenient date in the near future,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted.

Abe was scheduled to visit India to attend the India-Japan summit at Guwahati in Assam.

Earlier, some media reports hinted that the venue for Modi-Abe summit could be shifted from Guwahati considering the prevailing situation in North-East due to the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.

(ANI)

SC Dismisses All Review Pleas On Ayodhya Verdict

The Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed a batch of petitions seeking review of its landmark verdict in the Ayodhya land title dispute case after finding no grounds to entertain them.

“We have carefully gone through the Review Petitions and the connected papers filed therewith. We do not find any ground, whatsoever, to entertain the same. The Review Petitions are, accordingly, dismissed,” the court stated in the order copy.

A five-judge Constitution bench comprising Chief Justice of India S A Bobde and Justices D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan, Abdul Nazeer, and Sanjiv Khanna, who replaced former Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, heard the review petitions in-chambers.

The Bench also dismissed applications for the hearing of review petitions in an open court.

The petitioners included the Nirmohi Akhara, Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind and over a dozen others.

Last month, a five-judge bench had unanimously ruled in favour of Ram Lalla and said the entire disputed land spread over 2.7 acres will be handed over to a trust formed by the government, which will monitor the construction of a Ram temple at the site.

The top court also added that an alternative five acres of land at a prominent location in Ayodhya should be allotted for the construction of a mosque following consultation between the Centre and the state government.

(ANI)

Maharashtra Govt Declares Portfolios, Sena Gets Home

Weeks after Uddhav Thackeray took oath as the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, the Maha Vikas Aghadi, an alliance of Shiv Sena, NCP, and Congress, has finally allocated its Cabinet portfolios with Sena keeping Home, Congress getting Revenue and Finance and Planning going to NCP.

Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde has been allocated the charge for Home, Urban Development, Environment, PWD, Tourism and Parliamentary works. His party colleague in the Cabinet, Subhash Desai has been given the portfolio of Industry, Higher and Technical Education, Sports and Youth, and Employment.

On the other hand, Maharashtra Congress chief Balasaheb Thorat will look after the Revenue, School Education, Animal Husbandry and Fisheries in the Maharashtra Cabinet. Besides him, party leader Nitin Raut has been given the charge of PWD Tribal development, OBC Development, Women and Child Development and Relief and Rehabilitation.

Meanwhile, Nationalist Congress Party’s Chhagan Bhujbal has been allocated the charge of Rural Development, Social Justice, Water Resources and State Excise. Also, NCP’s Jayant Patil will look after Finance and Planning, Housing, Food Supply and Labour.

The six leaders — two each from Congress, Shiv Sena, and NCP — took oath as ministers in Maharashtra’s alliance government on November 28. They were administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari at Shivaji Park in Mumbai.

ANI

Muslim League Moves SC Against Citizenship Bill

Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) on Thursday filed a petition in the Supreme Court on the question of legality of Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019, which has been passed by both houses of Parliament.

IUML, in its petition, requested the apex court to stay the Bill and its operation. The Muslim League also pleaded to declare it “illegal and void” for violating Article 14, 15 and 21 of the Constitution.

In a copy made available to ANI, the league requested the court to pass and grant an interim stay on the operation of the Foreigner Amendment (Order), 2015 and Passport (Entry Into Rules), Amendment Rules, 2015; and decision arising from the aforesaid rules.

“Kapil Sibal will be representing us in the court. We are confident that we will win the case as it is strong both legally and morally. The Bill violates Article 14 and 15 of the Constitution,” said Mohammad Bashir, IUML member and Lok Sabha lawmaker from Ponnani.

The lawmaker said the Constitution of India is being “ruthlessly ignored” by the government.

The Bill, which was passed by Parliament on Wednesday, faced its first legal challenge with the filing of the petition.

IUML national secretary P K Kunhalikutty also said that since the Bill discriminates on the grounds of religion, it will not stand any ground in the top court.

The CAB smoothly sailed through Parliament after the Rajya Sabha passed it on Wednesday. As many as 125 members of the Upper House voted in favor of the Bill while 105 MPs voted against the Bill, which was passed by Lok Sabha earlier this week.

The Bill seeks to grant Indian citizenship to refugees from Hindu, Christian, Sikh, Buddhist and Zoroastrian communities fleeing religious persecution from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh and who entered India on or before December 31, 2014.

(ANI)