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Bengaluru college bars bearded Kashmiri students from classes

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Bengaluru August 9: A private nursing college here has kicked up a row by allegedly placing curbs on growing beard citing hygiene, with some students from Kashmir claiming that it affected their religious beliefs.
The management of the Adarsha College of Nursing said the move was mainly to promote hygiene but the issue has now been resolved.
When asked whether the college had passed any order pertaining to growing beard, a college official told PTI, “No. It is not true. Already we have sorted it out. Students are already in the classroom.
There was some misunderstanding between the students and the management. Now everything is fine.”
He said the students were allowed to come sportingbeard.
“We have given some direction that they can trim and come in a good shape,” the official said.
According to reports, some students alleged that they were not allowed to sit in the classroom because they refused to shave off their beard.
Some students from Kashmir claimed that it affected their religious beliefs.
They alleged that at the time of joining, the management did not have any problem with their beard.
“For the past week, we are being sent out of class on instructions from the principal for not shaving our beards. The management was fine with our beards when we filled the admission form and all of a sudden, the principal, who joined 20 days ago, asked us to shave it off. She barred us from entering class. The beards are part of our faith,” said one student.
Another alleged that on Wednesday, he could only attend two lectures. “When the principal got to know that we were in class, she asked the lecturers to send us out,” he claimed.
“We tried reasoning with her but she was adamant, citing discipline and uniformity.”
When The Hindu contacted Ms. Priyadarshini, she said she stood by her decision as it was a professional course and that there was a need for students to be ‘disciplined and maintain hygiene’. “These people are serving the patients and it is our protocol to ensure that the nails of our students are short and the boys come clean shaven and do not have piercing. Moreover, it’s an internal issue which was resolved with the college management.”
Bewildered by her decision, the four boys checked with other nursing colleges in the city to find out if it was mandatory for them to be clean shaven. “We were told that there is no such rule,” they said.
The nursing college is affiliated to the Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences (RGUHS). S. Sachidananda, Vice-Chancellor of the RGUHS, said the college management had erred as it could not hurt the religious sentiments of its students.
“We will inquire into the matter and issue directions to the college not to impose its views in this matter,” he said. However, the students said they discussed with their families in Kashmir, who have advised them to shave off the beard and not to get involved in any trouble.


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Goel is new RAW chief, Arvind Kumar appointed IB head

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New Delhi, Jun 26:  Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday appointed Samant Goel as the next chief of India’s external spy agency, Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) and Arvind Kumar as the Director, Intelligence Bureau.

Both are Indian Police Service officers of 1984 batch with Goel belonging to Punjab cadre and Kumar, to Assam-Meghalaya cadre.

Goel heads operations for the external intelligence agency.

 

Meanwhile Arvinda Kumar is the Director, Intelligence Bureau.

PM Modi, as chairman of the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet, also cleared the empanelment of 1986 batch IPS officer in the rank of Director General.

Both are Indian Police Service officers of 1984 batch with Goel belonging to Punjab cadre and Kumar, to Assam-Meghalaya cadre.

Goel heads operations for the external intelligence agency.

Goel according to a report has handled Punjab militancy at its peak in the 1990s and is a Pakistan expert. A mild-mannered police officer, Samant Goel has impeccable integrity, said a senior R&AW officer.

Arvind Kumar has been closely involved in tackling left-wing extremism at the Intelligence Bureau. The special director-rank officer is also the intelligence agency’s Kashmir expert and has been closely involved in formulating and executing the Centre’s approach on militancy in the valley.

Kumar, who started out his career in the police service from Assam, had moved to the intelligence bureau early in his career after a stint as superintendent of police of Sonitpur, one of the state’s largest districts. He never went back to Assam police and continued to work at the Centre, mostly at the intelligence agency.

Samant Goel, in contrast, spent a considerable part of his career in Punjab where he was posted to oversee security, intelligence and the border range.

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Pompeo meets PM Modi, discusses key strategic issues

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New Delhi, Jun 26: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday and discussed various aspects of the bilateral relationship to strengthen the India-US strategic partnership.

Pompeo, who arrived here on Tuesday night, will hold detailed discussions with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar in the afternoon and have a working lunch with him.

“Working together to further deepen our strategic partnership. Secretary Pompeo called on PM Narendra Modi to exchange views on various aspects of Indo-US relationship. PM will meet President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the upcoming G20 Osaka Summit,” Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted along with pictures of the meeting.

 

Ahead of the strategically-important India-US talks, diplomatic sources on Tuesday said India met the US waiver criteria for procuring the S-400 missile defence system from sanctions-hit Russia, and asserted that New Delhi could not “wish away” its defence ties with Moscow.

Besides India’s missile defence system deal with Russia, terrorism, H-1B visas, trade and the situation arising out of US sanctions on buying oil from Iran, are likely to be discussed on Wednesday during the talks between Jaishankar and Pompeo.

Pompeo’s talks here will be the first high-level interaction between the two countries after return of the Modi government to power last month.

Pompeo’s visit comes ahead of a meeting between US President Donald Trump and Modi on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Osaka, Japan, later this week

 US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Wednesday said that India and the US should stand together in the defence of religious freedom rights for all and asserted that the world is worse off when they are compromised.

“India is the birthplace of four major world religions. Let’s stand up together in defence of religious freedom for all, let us speak out in favour of those rights, for whenever we do compromise those rights, the world is worse off,” Pompeo was quoted as saying .

Pompeo’s remarks come in the backdrop of a recently-released US State Department report on ‘International Religious Freedom’ that said mob attacks by violent extremist Hindu groups against the minority communities, particularly Muslims, are continuing in India.

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AGH militant killed in Tral gunfight: Police

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Srinagar, Jun 26: A militant of Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind was killed in an encounter with government forces at Branpatri forest area of Tral in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Tuesday.

A joint team of army, SOG and CRPF laid a siege at Branpatri, forest area of Tral in Awantipora today morning.

A police spokesman said that the cordon was laid following credible inputs. As the joint team launched searches, the militants opened fire leading to an encounter, the spokesman said.

 

During the course of gunfight, one militant was killed and his body along with arms and ammunition was recovered. The officer identified the slain as Shabir Ahmad Malik of Nagbal Tral.

As per the police records, he was initially affiliated with proscribed LeT outfit and later on was part of Zakir Musa group, the spokesman said.

“Shabir, as per police records, was wanted by law for his complicity in several terror crimes including attack on security establishments and civilian atrocities,” he said.

“He was part of groups responsible for planning and executing militant attacks in the area. Several militant cases were registered against him including case FIR No. 43/15 of Police Station Trikuta Nagar pertaining to the planning and making preparations for carrying out terror attacks in Jammu,” the spokesman said.

Pertinently with the efforts of Police and security forces, it was a clean operation. No collateral damage happened during the encounter, the spokesman said.

After conducting all legal medico formalities, the body of the slain was handed over to his family for last rites, an official said.

Meanwhile, thousands of people attended the funeral of the slain at his native place. He was later buried amid pro-freedom slogans.

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