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Citizenship bill clears Rajya Sabha hurdle, Congress calls it a dark day

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The Rajya Sabha on Wednesday passed the Citizenship Amendment Bill 2019 with 125 members voting for it and 105 voting against it.

The bill seeks to fast-track citizenship to persecuted minorities coming to India from three neighbouring countries – Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. The BJP-led central government pushed for the bill arguing that it is India’s duty to give these minorities a dignified life.

The Lok Sabha had already passed the bill.

Congress chief Sonia Gandhi said the passage of the bill marks the victory of narrow-minded and bigoted forces .

“Today marks a dark day in the constitutional history of India. The passage of the Citizenship Amendment Bill marks the victory of narrow-minded and bigoted forces over India’s pluralism. The Bill fundamentally challenges the idea of India that our forefathers fought for and, in its place, creates a disturbed, distorted and divided India where religion will become a determinant of nationhood,” she said in a statement.

Earlier in the day, Union Home Minister Amit Shah took on the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha for questioning the basis of Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019, saying it has corrected a historic blunder.

“I said earlier in the day that Partition was done on the religious lines. The Opposition criticised this statement, so I would like to quote from the April 8, 1950 Nehru-Liaquat agreement (known as Delhi declaration), which said the religious minorities will be given equal rights in both the countries (India and Pakistan) to be part of the government and practice their own religions. These are the claims made by the Prime Ministers of both the countries to their respective religious minorities,” Shah said while replying to the debate on citizenship bill.

So, Partition was done on the religious line – it was a blunder which led us to formulate this bill, he further said.

“I know the law of Pakistan: There are many restrictions. India followed its principles – we have seen people from minority communities at high positions like Chief Justice of India, Chief Election Commissioner etc. But has this happened in three neighbouring countries? These minorities came to our country to save themselves. And we shouldn’t give them citizenship? Hence, this law is needed,” the Home Minister said.

Rajya Sabha held a six-hour-long debate on the bill, and voted after the Home Minister’s reply.

During the fierce debate, the Opposition slammed the government for attacking the foundation of the Constitution and Centre rubbishing all the allegations.

The day began with Shah tabling the bill in the Rajya Sabha with assurance that it will give protection to persecuted minorities from three neighbouring countries. “When Partition happened, it was thought the minorities will get civil rights and lead a normal life, that they will be able to practice their own religion and protect their women. But when we look back, we see what the truth really is. These people did not get their rights. They were either killed, converted or came to India,” Shah said.

He vehemently denied the Opposition charge that the bill is biased against Muslims in India. “The Muslims in India are our citizens, they won’t be tortured. What do you want – all the Muslims coming from all over the world should be given Indian citizenship? This is not possible. The minorities are being persecuted in these three countries, that is why we have included only these countries,” Shah said.

But as soon as the Home Minister finished his introductory speech, the Opposition started throwing barbs at the government invoking Mohammad Ali Jinnah and Sardar Vallabhbahi Patel.

“It hurts the soul of India. It is against our Constitution and democracy. It fails the morality test. It fails the constitutionality test. It is divisive and discriminatory,” said Congress’s Anand Sharma.

The Trinamool Congress and Samajwadi Party joined the raging debate. “I read that PM said this will be written in golden letters. I will tell you where it will be written; it will be written on grave of the father of the nation, but which father of the nation? In Karachi, on Jinnah’s grave,” said Trinamool Congress’s Derek O’Brien.

Samajwadi Party’s Javed Ali Khan said, “Our government, through this Citizenship (Amendment) Bill and NRC, is trying to fulfill the dream of Jinnah. Remember, in 1949 Sardar Patel had said ‘we are laying the foundation of a truly secular democracy in India’. The country cannot be divided on the basis of religion.”

In between the exchange of these caustic remarks, leaders of different parties kept announcing their stand in favour or against the bill. While the Janata Dal (United) continued its support for the bill in the Rajya Sabha, as it did in the Lok Sabha, the government’s legislation got a boost with the support of All India Anna Dravid Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), YSR Congress and Biju Janata Dal (BJD).

When the bill was tabled in the Lok Sabha on Monday, it saw similar aggression from the Opposition parties. The AIMIM’s Asaduddin Owaisi even tore up a copy of the bill. But the government used its absolute majority to push through the legislation in the Lower House on Parliament.

The bill seeks to halve 11-year-long wait for citizenship for non-Muslims from three countries. It will make it much easier for Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis, and Christians fleeing Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan to become Indians.

Protests against the bill have flared in various parts of India, including the ethnically diverse northeastern states, where people fear that settlers from neighbouring Bangladesh could be granted citizenship. The Army has deployed troops in Tripura and putting reinforcements on standby in neighbouring Assam, where police battled thousands of protesters. Police in Assam’s Guwahati used water cannons and tear gas as they clashed with protesters, who had blocked roads with flaming tyres.

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Who owns the Qutub Minar complex? The court will pronounce its verdict on December 12.

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Image Credits: pixahive.com

The matter of demanding the right of worship in the Qutub Minar complex is once again in discussion. In fact, the Saket court has reserved its decision on the reconsideration petition filed in the matter. Delhi’s Saket court will pronounce its verdict on December 12.

This reconsideration petition was filed by petitioner Kunwar Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad in Saket Court. In fact, the Saket court had rejected the petitioner Kunwar Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad’s petition in the matter of ownership of Qutub Minar. Kunwar Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad Singh had filed a petition claiming ownership over Qutub Minar.

By filing the first petition, Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad Singh had demanded to make himself a party in this matter. It was said in his petition that the government had taken over the entire property in 1947 without our permission. This petition was rejected by the court.

The last time in September, when the ASI’s lawyer opposed the petition of Kunwar Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad Singh, saying that Sultan Begum had claimed the ownership rights over the Red Fort, we had opposed that petition in the Delhi High Court. Even then the court had accepted that there is no basis for the demand made in the petition. ASI had requested to dismiss the petition of Kunwar Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad Singh.

Source: Aajtak

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Dry day, holiday in schools, metro timings also changed… know the changes before the MCD elections in Delhi

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The noise of campaigning for the Municipal Corporation elections in Delhi has come to an end. On Sunday i.e. December 4, votes will be cast to elect councilors in 250 wards. Before this, the Delhi government made three major changes so that the election arrangements can be implemented smoothly. In view of the elections, the Excise Department has declared a dry day for three days in Delhi. That is, there will be a ban on the sale of liquor in Delhi from Friday to Sunday. Liquor shops will remain closed on all three days. Apart from this, a holiday has been declared for all government schools on Saturday by the Delhi government. Due to the next day being Sunday, there will be a holiday in the schools. The third decision has been taken by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation. Metro services will be available every half an hour from 4 am on Sunday, the day of voting. This process will continue till 6 in the morning.

On behalf of the Education Department of the Delhi government, it was told that due to the preparations for the voting to be held on Sunday, a holiday has been declared for all government schools on Saturday. In return, schools will remain open on 10 December i.e. on the second Saturday of the month.

Liquor shops will remain closed for three days in the capital

Similarly, Delhi will have a dry day for three days from Friday. Delhi Excise Commissioner Krishna Mohan Uppu told that under Rule 52 of Excise Rules 2010, December 2 to 4 and December 7 will be dry days. Dry days are those days when the government bans the sale of liquor in shops, clubs, bars. According to the notification, there will be a dry day in Delhi from 5.30 pm on Friday, 2 December to 5.30 pm on 4 December. Not only this, there will be a dry day on 7th December i.e. the whole day of the results. That means there will be a ban on the sale of liquor.

Metro service will start at 4 am on Sunday

At the same time, Delhi Metro Railway Corporation (DMRC) has made changes in metro operations on the day of polling. Metro services will be started at 4 am on December 4 (Sunday), the day of voting in MCD elections. Metro will be available on all lines at an interval of every half an hour from 4 am to 6 am. After 6 am, the normal frequency will continue like normal days. Delhi Metro is currently providing services on a total of 10 lines, including Red Line, Yellow, Blue, Green, Violet, Pink, Magenta, Gray, and Airport Express Line.

Source: Aajtak

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Man kills live-in partner with cleaver in West Delhi

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Photo by Hassan Rafhaan on Unsplash | (Representational Image)

According to police, a 45-year-old man was arrested on Thursday for allegedly murdering his 35-year-old live-in partner at her rented house in Ganesh Nagar, West Delhi. According to police, the woman’s 16-year-old daughter was asleep in another room at the time of the incident.

According to the police, the victim, Rekha Rani, had lived in Ganesh Nagar with her daughter for more than 15 years, and the partner, Manpreet Singh, had stayed with them for the past 7-8 years.

According to police, Manpreet gave Rekha’s migraine patient daughter some pills and told her to go to sleep on December 1 at around 6 a.m.

“He informed her that her mother had gone to the market when she became suspicious and inquired about her mother. She called her cousin and went to his Paschim Vihar home. They then called the police when they discovered that their house in Ganesh Nagar was locked. Ravindra Singh Yadav, Special CP (Crime Branch), stated, “The victim’s daughter stated in her statement that she suspected that Manpreet had harmed her mother and that Manpreet and her mother had been fighting over money for some time.”

According to the police, the suspect allegedly stabbed Rekha in the neck and face while she resisted and mutilated a finger on her right hand.

Manpreet moved in with Rekha after meeting her in 2015. He claimed that Rekha stopped letting him visit and talk to his family because, over time, she started to feel insecure. A police officer stated, “He purchased a chopper (cleaver knife) recently to murder her and planned to kill her.”

According to the police, the accused is allegedly involved in six cases in Delhi, including kidnapping for a ransom, an attempt to kill, the arms act, and forgery.

According to the police, the suspect drove to his home village of Nabha in Punjab after killing the woman. Police said the car was found through toll barriers and he was caught using technical investigation.

Source: IndianExpress

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