Top news of the day: Over 300 applicants become Indian citizens under CAA; Supreme Court finds NewsClick founder Prabir Purkayastha’s arrest invalid, and more

The major news headlines of the day and more.

Published - May 15, 2024 07:28 pm IST

Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla hands over the first set of citizenship certificates under the CAA, in New Delhi, on May 15, 2024.

Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla hands over the first set of citizenship certificates under the CAA, in New Delhi, on May 15, 2024. | Photo Credit: PTI

More than 300 applicants become Indian citizens under the CAA

The Union government on May 15 granted citizenship certificates to more than 300 people who applied under the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), 2019, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said. At least 14 people were handed over the certificates by Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla in Delhi. The country of origin of the applicants was not immediately known but a government source said that most applicants were Pakistani Hindus.

Supreme Court finds NewsClick founder Prabir Purkayastha’s arrest invalid, says he is entitled to be released from custody

The Supreme Court on May 15 said it felt “no hesitation” whatsoever to conclude that the arrest and remand of 74-year-old journalist and online portal NewsClick founder Prabir Purkayasth under the draconian Unlawful Activities Prevention Act by the Delhi Police are “invalid in the eyes of law”, requiring his release from custody. A Bench of Justices B.R. Gavai and Sandeep Mehta said neither Mr. Purkayastha nor his designated counsel were provided the grounds of his arrest in writing.

ED arrests Jharkhand minister Alamgir Alam in money laundering case

The Enforcement Directorate on May 15 arrested Congress leader and Jharkhand Rural Development Minister Alamgir Alam in a money laundering case, official sources said. The 70-year-old was taken into custody at the agency’s zonal office here under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act after about six hours of interrogation on the second day of questioning, the sources said.

Supreme Court slams Uttarakhand’s approach in controlling forest fires, summons State’s Chief Secretary on May 17

Coming down hard on the Uttarakhand government, the Supreme Court said on May 15 it was at pains to say that the State’s approach in controlling forest fires was “lackadaisical”. A Bench headed by Justice B.R. Gavai directed the Chief Secretary of Uttarakhand to be present personally before it on May 17. The Bench, also comprising Justices S.V.N. Bhatti and Sandeep Mehta, observed that though multiple action plans are prepared, no steps are taken for their implementation.

Close shave for two cops as Naxalites trigger IED blast in Chhattisgarh

Two police personnel had a narrow escape on May 15 when Naxalites detonated an improvised explosive device in Chhattisgarh’s Bijapur district, an official said. The incident took place near Somanpalli village on Kutru-Farsegarh road when Farsegarh police station’s SHO Akash Masih and constable Sanjay were heading in a car to Bijapur town for a government work, he said.

Rajasthan mine collapse: All 15 Hindustan Copper Limited officials rescued, one feared dead

All 15 Hindustan Copper Limited officials who had been trapped in a mine in Neem ka Thana district since last night were taken out Wednesday, with one of them is feared dead, an official said. Neem ka Thana Collector Sharad Mehra said 14 rescued were sent to SMS hospital in Jaipur for treatment and one was taken to a company hospital for examination as he is feared dead.

Delhi court extends Manish Sisodia’s judicial custody till May 30 in Excise policy case

A Delhi court on May 15 extended the judicial custody of AAP leader and former Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia till May 30 in a corruption case related to an alleged excise scam. Special judge for CBI and ED Kaveri Baweja also fixed May 30 for further arguments on framing of charges in the case.

Manipur violence accounted for 97% of displacements in South Asia in 2023: Report

Conflict and violence triggered 69,000 displacements in South Asia in 2023, with Manipur violence alone accounting for 67,000, according to a new report. The report by the Geneva-based Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre termed it the highest number of displacements triggered by conflict and violence in India since 2018.

Slovakia’s PM Robert Fico injured in shooting, suspect detained

Media reports say Slovakia’s populist Prime Minister Robert Fico was injured in a shooting and taken to hospital. The incident took place in the town of Handlova, some 150km northeast of the capital, according to the news television station TA3. A suspect has been detained, it said. Deputy Speaker of Parliament Lubos Blaha confirmed the incident during a session of Parliament and adjourned it until further notice, the Slovak TASR news agency said.

Summer 2023 was the hottest in 2,000 years, says study

The intense northern hemisphere summer heat that drove wildfires across the Mediterranean, buckled roads in Texas and strained power grids in China last year made it not just the warmest summer on record - but the warmest in some 2,000 years, new research suggests. The stark finding comes from one of two new studies released on Tuesday, as both global temperatures and climate-warming emissions continue to climb.

Baltimore bridge collapse: Cargo ship Dali had power blackouts hours before leaving port

The cargo ship Dali experienced electrical blackouts about 10 hours before leaving the Port of Baltimore and yet again shortly before it slammed into the Francis Key Bridge and killed six construction workers, federal investigators said on May 14, providing the most detailed account yet of the tragedy. The first power outage occurred after a crew member mistakenly closed an exhaust damper while conducting maintenance, causing one of the ship’s diesel engines to stall, investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board said in their preliminary report. Shortly after leaving Baltimore early on March 26, the ship crashed into one of the bridge’s supporting columns because another power outage caused it to lose steering and propulsion at the exact worst moment.

Putin signs decree naming new Russian government, including replacement of Defence Minister

Russian President Vladimir Putin on May 14 signed a decree appointing a new government, including replacement of the Defence Minister with a former Deputy Prime Minister who is an economics expert with no military background. When Mr. Putin was inaugurated for a new six-year term on May 7, the government submitted its resignation in line with Russian law. Mr. Putin reappointed Mikhail Mishustin as Prime Minister three days later, which was quickly approved by the lower house of parliament.

Indian exports up 1.07% in April; trade deficit expands by 32.3%

India’s merchandise exports rose 1.07% to hit almost $35 billion in April while imports jumped 10.25% to $54.1 billion, as per Commerce Ministry estimates. The goods trade deficit for the month was 32.3% higher than a year ago, at $19.1 billion. Gold imports more than tripled in April to $3.11 billion from $1.01 billion in the same month a year ago. Gold imports stood at $1.53 billion in March 2024.

Only 1 black African in WC squad unacceptable: CSA slammed for not meeting transformational targets

Cricket South Africa (CSA) has been criticised for failing to meet “transformational targets” with only one black African in Kagiso Rabada part of the T20 World Cup squad. The 15-man provisional squad includes six players of colour, including Rabada. Over the course of a season, six players of colour are required to be in the South Africa playing eleven including two from the black African community. With Rabada being the only black African in the squad, the national team is set to miss its target.

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