Morning digest: India to decide on Iran crude imports after polls, several injured in clashes at Amit Shah’s rally, and more

Scene at Vidyasagar College, Bidhan Sarani Campus, Kolkata, where Students belonging to TMC wing alleged that BJP supporters attacked and vandalized their campus while Amit Shah's roadshow passed this area, on Tuesday evening, May 14, 2019

Scene at Vidyasagar College, Bidhan Sarani Campus, Kolkata, where Students belonging to TMC wing alleged that BJP supporters attacked and vandalized their campus while Amit Shah's roadshow passed this area, on Tuesday evening, May 14, 2019   | Photo Credit: Rajeev Bhatt

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India to decide on Iran crude imports after polls

India will take a call on the purchase of Iranian energy after the general elections, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj told her Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif here on Tuesday.

The discussions come in the backdrop of escalating tensions in the Gulf after the U.S. waivers for supply of Iranian energy ended on May 2, prompting Tehran to declare that it would no longer be bound by the 2015 nuclear deal.

Several injured after clashes mar Amit Shah’s Kolkata rally

Clashes broke out on Tuesday evening as the mega rally of BJP president Amit Shah passed through the north Kolkata neighbourhood dotted with educational institutions.

The first floor hall of a college affiliated to Calcutta University was ransacked and at least three motorcycles were set on fire.

Sri Lanka blasts accused was on radar of Indian agencies

A key accused in the recent serial blasts in Sri Lanka, Aadhil AX, was reportedly under surveillance by Indian agencies including Gujarat’s Anti Terrorist Squad (ATS), following the arrest of two Islamic State (IS) suspects Ubed Mirza and Kasim Stimberwala. The arrested persons were allegedly in touch with Aadhil via WhatsApp.

Both Mirza and Stimberwala were arrested by the Gujarat ATS and are in judicial custody in Surat. They have been charge-sheeted by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), which accused them of plotting a lone wolf attack in Ahmedabad. Mirza is a lawyer while Stimberwala is a medical technician.

‘Our priority is to form a non-BJP government’: K.C. Venugopal

“The PM has tried everything possible to create polarisation, but people have not let that happen. Such a low-level campaign has never happened in the history of Indian democracy. No leader in India, let alone a PM, has used such language. He has not said anything about jobs, NPAs, farm distress, which are the real issues before the people. His strategy has been to avoid all these issues. Hiding the real agenda became their agenda. People did not let that happen. The Hindu-Muslim polarisation that he tried has not worked.

“The remarks by Modi and [BJP president]Amit Shah about Rahul Gandhi’s decision to contest from Wayanad were so bad in taste. Their false claims have been exposed, as it happened in his latest interview on how he was micromanaging the operational details of the Balakot operation. He has lost his mind. What is the context of accusing Rajiv Gandhi? All this is to tickle communal sentiments, and to inflame hatred, sidestepping the real issues.”

In 2018, 207 Indians gave up citizenship

More than 200 Indians surrendered their citizenship in 2018, according to the Union Home Ministry.

Since 2010, 290 Indians have renounced their citizenship, and these included 207 in 2018 alone.

The data, accessed by The Hindu under the Right to Information Act, showed that in 2010, only three Indians renounced citizenship. There was no surrender of citizenship from 2012 to 2015, the Ministry said.

Opinion | Facing the climate emergency

A recent paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the U.S.A. shows that global warming during the past half century has contributed to a differential change in income across countries. Already wealthy countries have become wealthier and developing countries have been made poorer in relative terms during this time. India’s GDP growth penalty between 1961 and 2010 is in the order of 31% for the period, whereas Norway gained about 34% on a per capita basis.

More recently, the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services has reported that, worldwide, the abundance of species has reduced by at least one-fifth, about a million species are under threat of extinction in the next few decades and 85% of wetlands have been lost.

Dozens arrested after anti-Muslim violence in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka police arrested dozens and remanded nearly 30 persons on Tuesday, in connection with the spate of anti-Muslim attacks in at least three districts over the past two days.

A 45-year-old Muslim man, who ran a timber store in Kurunegala district in the North Western Province, died of stab injuries. According to residents of the villages in the area, at least two busloads of people, aided by “local goons”, carried out attacks on mosques, Muslim-owned shops and homes on Sunday night and Monday afternoon, in the worst outbreak of violence since the April 21 Easter bombings. Similar attacks were reported in parts of nearby Gampaha and Puttalam districts.

U.S. trade office targets $300 billion Chinese imports

The U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) on Monday published plans to increase tariffs on 3,805 Chinese imports, valued at about $300 billion. The move was expected since the end of last week and is the latest in a game of tit-for-tat tariffs which will mean that almost all Chinese goods entering the U.S. will be taxed at the higher rate, if the policy is implemented.

Monday’s proposed list of goods, which will now attract up to 25% tariffs, includes laptops, mobile phones, clothing, motorbikes and toys. Pharmaceuticals will be excluded.

Pakistan orders release of cleric who led Asia Bibi protests

A Pakistani court has ordered the release on bail of a hardline cleric who last year paralysed the country by orchestrating violent protests against the acquittal of Asia Bibi, a Christian accused of blasphemy, his organisation said on Tuesday.

The decision to free the firebrand cleric, Khadim Hussain Rizvi, came days after Ms. Bibi left Pakistan after spending eight years on death row in a case which spotlighted religious extremism in the conservative Muslim country. She is believed to have been reunited with her family in Canada.

A special feeling: Suvarna Lakshmi

Former Railways cricketer G. Suvarna Lakshmi says that what she failed to achieve as a player she will make up as a Match Referee at the highest level.

In a chat with The Hindu, after being named as the first woman on the ICC panel of Match Referees, the 50-year-old former South Central Railway player says the news has come as a huge, pleasant surprise.

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Printable version | Feb 28, 2020 1:51:19 PM |

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