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REPORT ON PAGE 5
SINGAPORE, WEEKEND OF FRIDAY,
JUNE 10, 2022
MCI (P) 034/10/2021
Court wants cops who killed four
alleged rapists, tried for murder
A Supreme Court commission probing
the killing of four people accused of a
2019 gang rape and murder found that
the police deliberately shot all the
accused even though they did not try
The commission suggested that the
10 policemen involved should be tried
On Dec 6, 2019, the four accused
were shot in Chatanpally, about 50km
from Hyderabad. It was at the same
place where the body of a 25-year-old
veterinarian was found burnt after she
was gang-raped and murdered.
Man sentenced to death for holy
A court has sentenced a man to death
over deadly bomb blasts that rocked
the Hindu holy city of Varanasi, in a
trial that took 16 years to reach a
Wasiullah Khan was convicted on
murder and terrorism charges last
week over the 2006 attacks, which
targeted an ancient temple packed
with worshippers and a nearby railway
station. Around 20 people were killed
in the blasts while dozens more were
Police arrest youth leader for
Police in Uttar Pradesh have arrested a
youth leader from the Bharatiya Janata
Party for posting anti-Muslim
comments on social media.
Mr Harshit Srivastava was arrested
in Kanpur city following communal
tensions last week. A senior police
officer said at least 50 people were
taken into custody following the
Close aide of Moose Wala’s
shooter arrested in Pune
Delhi Police’s Special Cell has arrested
a man from Pune who is said to be the
close aide of one of the shooters of
Punjabi singer Shubhdeep Singh,
popularly known as Sidhu Moose
Sidhesh Hiraman Kamle, alias
Mahakaal, was arrested in a joint
operation by teams from the Delhi
Police Special Cell and Maharashtra
The Punjab Police said there were
eight shooters and the mastermind was
gangster Lawrence Bishnoi.
New social media laws in response
to rights violations
The Indian government on Monday
reissued new rules on social media
companies that it proposed but
abruptly withdrew last week.
It made no changes but explained
that the law was needed because the
companies had violated Indians’
26 in bus that falls into gorge
dead, 4 in critical condition
The death toll has risen to 26 after a
bus on Sunday fell into a gorge in
Uttarakhand with 30 people on board,
with four of those rescued in critical
The bus was en route to Yamunotri,
the source of the river Yamuna, from
Panna district in Madhya Pradesh.
6 killed, 20 injured in chemical
At least six people were killed and 20
injured in an explosion at a chemical
factory in Uttar Pradesh’s Hapur
district on Saturday.
The accident happened after a
boiler burst at an industrial facility in
Dhaulana, around 60km from New
Police spokesman Surendra Singh
said that the death toll could go up
because a number of those injured
were in critical condition.
New Guinness World Record in
Road Transport and Highways Minister
Nitin Gadkari said on Wednesday that
India has entered the Guinness World
Records for constructing the longest
piece of bituminous concrete laid
The record was achieved for
constructing 75km of continuous
bituminous concrete in a single lane on
National Highway 53 – on a section
between Amravati and Akola districts
According to Mr Gadkari, the team
comprising 720 workers and
consultants began building the road on
June 3 at 7.27am local time and
finished constructing the 75km stretch
on June 7 at 5pm – a record time of
105 hours and 33 minutes.
Biological E’s Covid-19 shot
approved as booster
The Drugs Controller General of India
(DCGI) has approved
Biological E’s Covid-19 vaccine as the
first mix-and-match booster dose in
It said the Corbevax vaccine can be
administered as a booster shot to
people aged 18 years and over who
have already received two doses of
either AstraZeneca’s Covishield or
Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin.
Crop-nourishing monsoon rains to
pick up steam by mid-June
Monsoon rains in India are likely to
pick up by mid-June, the chief of the
the India Meteorological Department
said on Wednesday, spurring the
sowing of crucial crops such as rice,
corn, cotton, soya bean, sugarcane and
“As per our extended range
forecast, rainfall activity is likely to
increase by June 15,” said
Mr Mrutyunjay Mohapatra,
director-general of IMD.
The monsoon – which accounts for
nearly 70 per cent of India’s annual
rainfall and is the lifeblood of its
US$2.7 trillion agriculture-dependent
economy – arrived in Kerala two days
ahead of the usual time, on May 29.
But since June 1, when the four-month
monsoon season began, rains are 42
per cent below average.
Masks compulsory on flights and
India’s regulator of air traffic on
Wednesday issued fresh guidelines,
making it mandatory for all passengers
to wear masks throughout a flight.
Those flouting the guidelines would
be treated as “unruly” and could be
deboarded before take-off.
Masks are also compulsory at
airports, said the Directorate General
of Civil Aviation.
Pant to captain India after Rahul
is out with injury
Rishabh Pant said on Wednesday that
he would make the most of his
unexpected chance to captain the
Indian cricket team after K.L. Rahul
was ruled out due to a groin injury on
the eve of the Twenty20 series against
Pant, a wicketkeeper-batsman who
leads Delhi Capitals in the Indian
Premier League, was set to take charge
for the five-match series, which began
on Thursday in New Delhi.
“It’s a great feeling, especially
getting an opportunity like this in your
hometown,” said the 24-year-old.
“There’s no bigger opportunity than
this and I will make the most of it.”
Indian mixed martial arts fighter Anshul
“King of Lions” Jubli (right) is in Singapore
for his Ultimate Fighting Championship
(UFC) clash with Japan’s Sho Usami at the
Singapore Indoor Stadium today.
The 27-year-old has an unbeaten 5-0
record and believes he will win in the
inaugural Asia-wide edition of the Road To
UFC, designed to unearth untapped talents.
“Getting to the UFC is the dream. I can
promise you that within four years, you will
see many, many Indian fighters follow me.
This is just the beginning,” said Anshul, who
fights in the lightweight category.
Only one India-born fighter won a UFC
contract. But featherweight Bharat
Khandare lost his only fight in 2017, so he
was let go.
Anshul, who was born in Uttarkashi,
initially wanted to follow his father’s
footsteps and join the Indian Army.
“I started learning MMA to help with my
army physical exams, but I soon realised it
was MMA that I wanted to do, not join the
army,” he said.
“My father is quite happy but I know my
mother still hopes that I will quit and
become a doctor or a lawyer. There’s no
chance of that.”
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V.K. Santosh Kumar
Channel Excellence Lead
India’s King of Lions in Lion City for Ultimate fight
Her incendiary remarks sparked outrage from
the Islamic world and a diplomatic furore but
Nupur Sharma (right) has long been a firebrand
mouthpiece for the BJP.
The 37-year-old was a regular fixture in TV
news debates, distinguishing herself as a zealous
and combative advocate for the BJP’s agenda.
Her stature rose in concert with the fortunes of
the party, which in the past decade established
itself as India’s dominant political force by
championing Hindu identity.
Ms Sharma issued a public apology after her
comments last week and said she had received
death threats in the wake of her television
appearance. Her party also went into damage
control, suspending her for expressing “views contrary to the party’s
But experts said the suspension made Ms Sharma the party’s scapegoat for
a broader political culture that has long dealt in anti-Islamic rhetoric.
“The party uses these hotheads to drive their agenda but when they go
overboard they are forced to pull back,” said Delhi-based analyst Parsa
“It’s a cat-and-mouse game they play. The party’s top brass allows the
spokesmen to raise the temperature and they step in only when they feel it is
going out of control.”
Until last week, Ms Sharma was one of the rising stars of the BJP.
A trained lawyer who attended the London School of Economics, she
unsuccessfully contested a state election in 2015.
She joined the party’s youth wing while studying at Delhi University, where
she was elected student union president and became infamous for leading a
mob of students to storm a seminar hosted by a Muslim academic in 2008.
Ms Sharma’s sidelining from the party was not a result of her beliefs but
because her comments on Islam had “overstepped her mark”, said Mr Hartosh
Singh Bal, political editor of Caravan magazine.
“She was at the centre of what the party’s future ideas would be for a
young leader. This is just a little damage control. The kind of Islamophobia on
which they practise their politics will not change.”
Protesters in Kolkata demanding the arrest of the offending BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma.
Party’s firebrand sparks outrage
Leaders of India’s ruling party on
Tuesday instructed officials to be “ex-
tremely cautious” when talking about
religion on public platforms after
derogatory remarks about Prophet Mo-
hammad drew protests from Islamic
India’s Muslims have felt more pres-
sure on everything, from freedom of
worship to hijab, under the rule of the
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
There were Hindu-Muslim clashes
during religious processions recently,
following deadly riots in 2019-20.
Two BJP leaders said verbal instruc-
tions were given to over 30 senior
officials and some federal ministers
who are authorised to take part in
debates hosted by Indian news chan-
nels that are often aired live to millions
“We don’t want party officials to
speak in a way that hurts the religious
sentiments of any community. They
must ensure the party’s doctrine gets
shared in a sophisticated manner,” said
a senior BJP leader and federal minis-
ter in New Delhi.
With about 110 million members,
mainly Hindus, the BJP is the world’s
largest political party, while Muslims
comprise around 13 per cent of India’s
1.35 billion population.
Last week, the BJP suspended
spokesman Nupur Sharma and ex-
pelled another official after Islamic
nations demanded apologies from the
Indian government and summoned
diplomats to protest against anti-Is-
lamic remarks made in a TV debate.
Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Oman, the
United Arab Emirates, Indonesia,
Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran were
among the nations that made their
The influential 57-member Organisa-
tion of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) said
in a statement that the insults came in
the context of an increasingly intense
atmosphere of hatred toward Islam in
India and systematic harassment of
Although the BJP has denied any
rise in communal tensions during its
reign, the party’s rule has emboldened
hardline Hindu groups in recent years
to take up causes they say defend their
faith, stoking a rise in anti-Muslim
A US State Department annual
report on international religious free-
dom said attacks such as killing, as-
sault and intimidation on members of
minority communities took place in
India throughout last year.
India’s foreign ministry said on Mon-
day the offensive tweets and com-
ments did not in any way reflect the
“We are not barred from speaking
on sensitive religious issues, but we
must never insult the basic tenets of
any religion,” said senior BJP
spokesperson Gopal Krishna Agarwal.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi in
recent years has improved economic
ties with energy-rich Islamic nations,
the main source for India’s fuel im-
ports, but relations have come under
stress from the anti-Islamic utterances
of the two BJP members, foreign
policy experts said.
Small protests erupted in parts of
India as Muslim groups demanded the
arrest of the BJP spokesman.
BJP warns officials to be tactful
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