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Babri Masjid Was Destroyed by ‘Hindu Taliban’, Litigant Tells Supreme Court

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New Delhi: The Babri Masjid was destroyed by the ‘Hindu Taliban” just like the demolition of the Buddha statue by the Taliban at Bamiyan in Afghanistan, a litigant in the Ayodhya temple-mosque land dispute case told the Supreme Court.
“No law or the Constitution allows destruction of religious structures of any faith,” senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, appearing for the legal heirs of M Siddiq, the original litigant who died, told a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer.
Dhavan also questioned the locus of the Shia Central Waqf Board in the case.
His comments came after the Shia board told the bench that it was willing to donate one-third of the disputed land, which the Allahabad High Court had given to the Muslims, to the Hindu group for “peace, harmony, unity and integrity” in this great country.
The counsel for the Shia Central Waqf Board said they were the claimants of the Muslim share of land at the disputed Ayodhya site, as the Babri Masjid was built by Mir Baki, a Shia Muslim.
“It is a fundamental issue. The Shia Central Waqf Board has decided that for the unity, integrity, peace and harmony of the country, we want to donate the one-third part of land to the Hindu group,” the lawyer said.
Dhavan, who initially said he would not respond to innuendos, later countered the Shia board’s submissions and said it was way back in 1946 that the Babri Masjid was held to be a Sunni mosque.
“You cannot argue that this (demolition of mosque) was by some miscreants,” he said, adding, “What had happened in 1992? The Bamiyan statue was destroyed by the Taliban and this mosque was destroyed by Hindu Taliban. It cannot be done. It should not have been done. No one can do this”.
He argued that those who destroyed the mosque should be barred from making any claim since “no one has the right to destroy a mosque or any other religious structures”.
“The simple argument is that the fact that a mosque is destroyed does not conclude the argument of right to prayer,” he said.
Dhavan said the Shia board’s argument that it wanted to donate a share of the land to the Hindu group was like “indulging in a non-existent act of charity”.
He also questioned the “intervention” of an Additional Solicitor General (ASG), who was appearing for Uttar Pradesh government, in the matter and said that arguments by the law officer were “uncalled” for.
On July 6, the UP government had told the apex court that some Muslim groups were trying to delay the hearing in the “long-pending” land dispute case by seeking reconsideration of an observation in the 1994 verdict in M Ismail Faruqui case that a mosque was not integral to Islam.


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National

Pramod Sawant sworn in as 11th Goa CM

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Mumbai : Vijai Sardesai from the Goa Forward Party and Sudin Dhavalikar from Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, both alliance partners, have been inducted as Deputy Chief Ministers, Union Minister of State for AYUSH Shripad Naik told reporters on the sidelines of the oath-taking ceremony at Raj Bhavan here.
Sawant, 45, was administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor Mridula Sinha at a formal ceremony held at the Raj Bhavan in the early hours of Tuesday.
Apart from Sawant and the two deputy Chief Ministers, nine other MLAs, all of them who were part of the previous BJP-led coalition cabinet headed by Parrikar, were also administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor and inducted as ministers in the state cabinet.
The Chief Minister said portfolios would be allotted to his ministers within eight days.
Sawant succeeds former Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, who died on Sunday due to complications arising from advanced pancreatic cancer.
The new Chief Minister heads a coalition government which has the support of 12 MLAs from the BJP, three each from the Goa Forward and MGP, and two independent MLAs, taking the tally of the treasury benches to 20 in the 36-member state legislative assembly.
“Parrikar is not among us now and this responsibility has been given collectively to me by my party, alliance partners and independent MLAs. This is a big responsibility,” Sawant told reporters soon after he was sworn in.
“I am committed to the development of Goa and to take forward the teachings of former Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar with a positive outlook,” Sawant also said, adding that he would focus on completing all infrastructure related projects started by his predecessor.
He was sworn in after a marathon session of hectic negotiations anchored by Union Minister Nitin Gadkari and BJP national president Amit Shah, who over a series of meetings, spanning more than 24 hours, with legislators from regional parties and independent MLAs forged a coalition together.

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2008 Mumbai attacks one of the ‘most notorious’ terrorist attacks: China

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Mumbai/Beijing: In a rare acknowledgment, China described the 2008 Mumbai attacks carried out by Pakistan-based LeT terror outfit as one of “the most notorious terrorist attacks”.
In a white paper on its massive crackdown against terrorists in the restive Xianjiang province, China said the global spread of terrorism and extremism over the years had inflicted agony on humanity.
The paper described the Mumbai terror attacks as one of “the most notorious terrorist attacks”, adding that the “global spread of terrorism and extremism over the years has inflicted agony on humanity”.
The release of the paper, “The Fight Against Terrorism and Extremism and Human Rights Protection in Xinjiang”, interestingly coincided with Pakistan foreign minister’s Shah Mehmood Qureshi’s visit to China.
Throughout the world, terrorism and extremism gravely threaten peace and development, and endanger the life and property of individuals, said the white paper released by China’s State Council Information Office.
The paper came days after China for the fourth time blocked a bid in the United Nations Security Council on Wednesday to designate Pakistan-based chief of Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror group Masood Azhar as a “global terrorist” by putting a technical hold on the proposal, a move India termed as disappointing.
The JeM has claimed responsibility for the February 14 Pulwama attack that left 40 CRPF personnel dead and escalated tensions between India and Pakistan.
“Striking aggressively at terrorism and furthering the de-radicalisation effort is the common responsibility of the international community and essential to the protection of human rights,” it said.
China opposes all forms of terrorism and extremism, and opposes double standards on fighting terrorism, said the white paper, adding that Beijing opposes linking terrorism and extremism with specific countries, ethnic groups or religions.
China advocates comprehensive measures to address both the symptoms and the root causes, with the dual purposes of striking at terrorist activities and eliminating poverty, so that there will be no room for terrorism to breed, it said.

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Pak did not do a favour by returning Abhinandan, says Sitharaman

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Mumbai: Pakistan has shown the statements of such people and opposition leaders on their television channels, increasing TRP, the minister said.

“It is these people who did not want (the country) to buy Rafale, because arrival of these will give strength to our forces,” she said, addressing a gathering in Kolkata on ‘Ensuring India’s National Security’ organised by the Dr Syama Prasad Mookerjee Research Foundation.

India has given a message to the world after the Balakot air strike by not bowing to Pakistan’s nuclear blackmail, the minister said.

 

On February 26, the IAF conduct air strikes in Pakistan’s Balakot targeting Jaish-e-Mohammed terror camps. The strikes came after a suicide bomber from the terror group on February 14 rammed an explosive-laden vehicle into a CRPF bus, killing 40 personnel, in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama district.

Modi did what former prime minister Manmohan Singh did not do after the Mumbai attacks on November 26, 2008, possibly because of Pakistan’s continued propaganda that “it is a nuclear power like India, and we should not forget that before doing anything against them”, she said.

“‘Chowkidar’ gave Pakistan the right answer,” she said.

The defence minister said though there is no direct war being waged between India and Pakistan, there were ceasefire violations by the neighbouring country, and non-state actors with the support of Pakistan, indulge in attacks like that in Pulwama.

Many were given training for suicide attacks at Balakot. There was intelligence on this development and that there will be many more Pulwama-like attacks in the coming days, she said.

“So, not to wage war but to neutralise the terrorists at their training camps. They were eliminated (at Balakot),” she said, adding, India did what Pakistan ought to have done.

Sitharaman said Pakistan claims it is a victim of terrorism, but itself trains and sends them to India.

“Why Pakistan does not take action against terrors groups and terrorists being nurtured and trained on its soil if it is a victim?” she asked.

The minister said that after the Pulwama attack, evidence was given to Pakistan, but it did not act.

Noting that the Jaish-e-Mohammed itself claimed responsibility for the strike, she said, “What more proof does it (Pakistan) want?”

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