09:38 Swamy backs VHP observing Babri Demolition Anniversary : BJP leader Subramanian Swamy Thursday asserted that there is nothing wrong with the Vishva Hindu Parishad observing the anniversary of the demolition of the Babri mosque, and added that the same must be done peacefully.
Speaking to ANI on 26th anniversary of the demolition of the Babri mosque, Swamy said, “The VHP has a right to observe the day as they have led the movement. Babri Masjid was an eyesore for everybody. After all, there was a temple and it is Ram Janamabhoomi. Babar comes here and his commander breaks the temple and builds a mosque on top of it. So many people have been protesting. Maybe 4000-5000 people have been killed. If VHP wants to observe the day, its fine but it should be peaceful.”
The VHP will be observe a ‘Shaurya Diwas’ today, days after it organised a Dharam Sabha in Ayodhya on November 25 to seek support for construction of a grand Ram temple.
Also on December 18, the VHP will celebrate Gita Jayanti. This day marks the day Lord Krishna ‘revealed’ the Bhagavad Gita to Arjun.
All this comes at a time when political parties and other organisations in favour of construction of Ram Temple have raised the pitch over the sensitive issue, demanding an early construction of the temple.
Notably, after the Supreme Court refused an early hearing, many outfits have urged the government to bring in an ordinance to facilitate construction of Ram temple at the site.
Thousands of security personnel have dotted the roads and bylanes of the holy city to avoid any untoward incident from taking place.
Reportedly, over 2,500 police personnel, besides Rapid Action Force and paramilitary CRPF, have been deployed as part of multi-layered security including in and around the disputed site and several parts of Hanumangarhi area of the temple town.The Babri mosque was demolished on December 6, 1992 by ‘karsevaks’. — ANI
09:30 When PM Narendra Modi Visited Court No 1 in the Supreme Court: Narendra Modi is big on claiming historic firsts, even if some do not survive a vigorous fact-check. On November 25, however, he is believed to have indulged in a genuine first ‘” visiting the Supreme Court, something no prime minister is known to have done in the 60 years since the court’s current premises were inaugurated by Jawaharlal Nehru. Then, according to people present, he took Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi by surprise, and asked to see Court No. 1, over which the CJI presides.
Read the report here.
09:17 Chinese effort to impose its own Dalai Lama would be opposed: US:
The United States believes that the decision on picking the next Dalai Lama should be as per Tibet’s religious traditions and that it is not a role of the state, a top Trump Administration official has told lawmakers, hinting that it will oppose any move by China to impose its own Dalai Lama.
“The United States has a very clear position that religious decisions should be made within religious organisations and that this isn’t the role of the state,” Laura Stone, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, told the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific and International Cybersecurity Policy during a Congressional hearing.
Stone was responding to a question from Senator Cory Gardner.
“China has said that they will pick the next Dalai Lama. The Tibetan Policy, actually in 2002, mandated that American officials visit Tibet on a regular basis. I want to get into both of these. If China proceeds and tries to impose a Dalai Lama what will the US response be?” the senator had asked.
Gardner said it was clear that this Congress would not recognise a Chinese imposition.
Stone said the senator asking such a question was an important signal in itself to the Chinese government that this was the kind of issue that the United States was watching very closely and at very senior levels.
“I wouldn’t want to prejudge exactly how this, a future scenario, would roll out but I would like to lay a marker that that is the clear position of the United States government and, I think, widely supported within the American society, that those are the kinds of decisions that should be made by religious communities on their own and without outside interference,” she asserted.
In his remarks, Gardner said the crackdown in the Tibet Autonomous Region was intensifying while Beijing continued to refuse negotiations with the Central Tibetan Administration.
“Human rights defenders are routinely jailed, tortured, and otherwise deprived of liberty. A genuine freedom of speech and assembly are nonexistent. Corruption and abuse of power are rampant. The judicial system is a tool of the state and the party and not an impartial arbiter of legal disputes,” he said. — PTI
08:51 India 4th highest emitter of CO2: Study:
India is the fourth highest emitter of carbon dioxide in the world, accounting for 7 per cent of global emissions in 2017, a study said.
The top four emitters in 2017, which covered 58 per cent of global emissions, were China (27 per cent), the United States(15 per cent), the European Union (10 per cent) and India (7 per cent), according to the projection by the Global Carbon Project.
The rest of the world contributed 41 per cent last year, it said.
India’s emissions look set to continue their strong growth by an average of 6.3 per cent in 2018, with growth across all fuels — coal (7.1pc), oil (2.9pc) and gas (6.0pc), the study said.
The top 10 emitters were China, the US, the EU, India, Russia, Japan, Germany, Iran, Saudi Arabia and South Korea.
The study also said that the Indian emissions were projected to grow 2 per cent in 2017, compared to 6 per cent per year averaged over the previous decade, due to significant government interventions in the economy.
In India, emissions are expected to grow by a solid 6.3 per cent in 2018, pushed by strong economic growth of around 8 per cent per year.
“Coal is still the mainstay of the Indian economy, and as in China, it will be a challenge for solar and wind to displace coal, given the strong growth in energy use,” it said.
It also said that although global coal use is still 3 per cent lower than its historical high, it is expected to grow in 2018, driven by growth in energy consumption in China and India. — PTI
08:20 ‘Can’t understand link’: Mallya on Christian Michel extradition:
Fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya on Thursday rejected any links between his proposed settlement offer to banks or an upcoming court verdict on his extradition and that of Christian Michel, the alleged middleman in the AgustaWestland chopper deal, who was brought back to India on Tuesday.
Mallya again appealed to banks to accept his offer to take back the principal loan amount he owes them.
“Respectfully to all commentators, I cannot understand how my extradition decision or the recent extradition from Dubai and my settlement offer are linked in any way. Wherever I am physically,my appeal is please take the money. I want to stop the narrative that I stole money,” Mallya tweeted.
The owner of the defunct Kingfisher airline in a series of Tweet on Wednesday offered to pay back 100 per cent of the public money to various Indian banks and even urged the government to accept his offer.
Mallya’s proposal comes days ahead of UK court’s decision on his plea not to extradite him to India.
The 62-year business tycoon is undergoing an extradition trail in a UK court over fraud and money laundering charges allegedly amounting to around Rs 9,000 crores.
00:04 UK seeks info from India on Michel’s extradition:
The United Kigdom government on Wednesday said it has sought urgent information from India on the circumstances surrounding the detention and extradition of Christian Michel, the alleged middleman in the Rs 3,600-crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper scam case, who is facing allegations of bribery.
“Our staff continues to support the family of a British man following his detention in the UAE,” said a spokesperson for the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO).
“We are in contact with his family and the Emirati authorities regarding his case, and are urgently seeking information from the Indian authorities on his circumstances,” the spokesperson said.
Michel is one of the three middlemen being probed in the case, besides Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa, by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the CBI. — PTI