Operated more than 2800 flights worldwide till now under Vande Bharat Mission, says Air India

News Network
July 31, 2020

New Delhi, Jul 31: Air India has operated more than 2800 flights and flown over 3 lakh passengers worldwide till now under the Vande Bharat Mission.

"Air India under Vande Bharat Mission Operated more than 2800 flights and flown more than 3 lakh, 80 thousand passengers worldwide till now," Air India said in a tweet on Thursday.

The fifth phase of the Government of India's 'Vande Bharat' mission, aimed at evacuating Indian nationals stranded in various foreign countries owing to restrictions on air travel, will begin early next month, August 1.

"Under Vande Bharat Mission, we have already brought back more than 2.5 lakh stranded Indians from 53 commies," Air India had earlier said in a statement.

Over 7.88 lakh Indians stranded abroad due to coronavirus pandemic have returned under Vande Bharat Mission till July 22, Ministry of External Affairs had said.

The government started Vande Bharat Mission on May 7.

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Agencies
September 18,2020

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New Delhi, Sept 18: The Supreme Court Friday asked Zakat Foundation, an NGO which provides training to largely Muslims students aspiring for civil services, whether it wanted to intervene in the Sudarshan TV case following allegations of foreign funding from some terror linked organizations to its Indian set up.

A bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud, Indu Malhotra and K M Joseph told senior advocate Sanjay Hegde, appearing for the Zakat Foundation, that the affidavit of Sudarshan TV has allegations of foreign funding against his client.

Hegde said his client is a charitable organization and has been supporting non-Muslims as well and this kind of social service is not known even in government circles.

The bench told Hegde that some Foreign Contribution Regulations Act (FCRA) records with regard to foreign funding have been filed by the TV channel and it is upon his client to intervene in the matter or not.

Hegde said Zakat foundation does not conduct any residential programmes and only pays the fees of the IAS coaching classes.

The top court was hearing a plea which has raised a grievance over Sudarshan TVs Bindas Bol' programme with the channel promo claiming it would show the 'big expose on conspiracy to infiltrate Muslims in government service'.

In its affidavit filed by Sudarshan TV through its Editor in-Chief, the channel has said: The Answering Respondent (Suresh Chavhanke) has used the words UPSC Jehad because it has come to the knowledge... through various sources that Zakat Foundation has received funds from various terror-linked organizations.

"It is not that all contributors to the Zakat Foundation are terror-linked. However, some of the contributors are linked to organizations or are organizations that fund extremist groups. The funds received by the Zakat Foundation, in turn, are used to support aspirants for IAS, IPS or UPSC, it had said.

The affidavit had further said when it comes to light through various sources that funds contributed by tainted organizations are being used to facilitate people joining UPSC, there is a serious issue requiring public debate, discussion and scrutiny...

There is no statement or message in the four episodes broadcast that members of a particular community should not join UPSC. UPSC is an open competitive examination and members of every community may participate in the entrance examination and qualify.., the journalist said in his 91-page affidavit.

In the response to the plea filed by lawyer Firoz Iqbal Khan, seeking banning of the programmes, the channel said the thrust of its episodes was that there appeared to be a conspiracy which needed "to be investigated by NIA or CBI as the terror linked organizations were apparently funding the Foundation in India, which in turn has been supporting Muslim UPSC aspirants.

Earlier, in the day, the channel, which is facing legal proceedings in the top court, has moved an application seeking live telecast of hearing of the plea.

It had on September 15, restrained the channel from telecasting the episodes of 'Bindas Bol' till further orders saying that the intent of the episodes prima facie appeared to vilify the Muslim community.

The application filed by Sudarshan News through its Director and editor Suresh Chavhanke said, It is respectfully submitted that present case is one of the most important cases concerning the public at large as the question of freedom of press protected by Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution of India is involved.

It said that lakhs and crores of viewers of the channel wants to know about the legal proceedings conducted before this Court and they want to hear the points of arguments being raised by the parties.

Direct for Live of the Proceedings of this case through audio-visual broadcasting/telecasting universally by an official agency as the court may deem fit and proper, the application said.

The hearing in the matter is going on.

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Agencies
September 17,2020

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New Delhi, Sept 17: A PIL has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking legal action against former Supreme Court judge Justice Markandey Katju for casting aspersions and making insinuations on the integrity and credibility of the Indian judiciary while deposing for fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi before the Westminster Magistracy court of the UK.

The PIL has been filed by Nand Kishore Garg through advocate Shashank Deo Sudhi. "The Indian judiciary must not take this issue casually as such derogatory deposition made the entire judiciary suspect in the eyes of the international community. It is high time to redeem the glory of Indian judiciary by acting proactively to stop such routine false allegations," said the plea.

It contended that the deposition made by Katju is highly derogatory and insulting to the entire judicial system of India.

"His allegations amount to questioning the very credibility of judicial institution where millions of citizens are reposing their faith and trust. The allegation of fairness of judicial administration is totally unfounded as the justice delivery system of India is quite strong and robust," argued the petitioner.

The petitioner has urged the top court to issue a broad guideline on issues of public criticism/maligning of the judicial system and it's serving judges especially from those who served the highest institution of our country.

According to the plea, Katju made allegations that 50 percent of the judiciary is corrupt in India and therefore a fair justice is not possible for PNB scam accused Nirav Modi in the country.

"The allegation made by Katju has eroded the faith and trust of common people in the judiciary. It is high time that the Indian judiciary must come up with exemplary action against those people who are routinely lowering the integrity of the judicial system by levelling extremely atrocious and fake allegations for their personal publicity," said the plea.

The petitioner argued that the image of the judiciary has been lowered following the highly derogatory deposition where serious allegations have been made only to protect the interest of fugitive.

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News Network
September 14,2020

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New Delhi, Sept 14: The Delhi Police Special Cell has arrested former Jawaharlal Nehru University student leader Umar Khalid under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).

Sources told The Indian Express that Khalid was summoned on Saturday and asked to join the investigation on Sunday at the Special Cell office in Lodhi Colony. “He had earlier been questioned on July 31, when his phone was seized. On Sunday, he arrived around 1 pm and was questioned during the day before being arrested in the evening,” a police source said.

Police are likely to file a chargesheet against him in the coming days, the source said. He will be produced before a Delhi court on Monday.

According to police, an FIR was registered against Khalid on March 6 based on information provided by an informer to Sub-Inspector Arvind Kumar of the narcotics unit of the Crime Branch. As per the FIR, Kumar said the informer told him that the Northeast Delhi riots in February were part of a “premeditated conspiracy” allegedly hatched by Khalid, one Danish, and two others associated with different organisations.

That FIR states: “Khalid allegedly gave provocative speeches at two different places and appealed to the citizens to come out on the streets and block the roads during the visit of US President Donald Trump to spread propaganda at the international level about how minorities in India are being persecuted.”

Kumar alleged in the FIR that as part of the conspiracy, firearms, petrol bombs, acid bottles, and stones were stored at homes in Kardampuri, Jafrabad, Chand Bagh, Gokulpuri, Shiv Vihar and nearby areas. “The co-accused, Danish, was given the responsibility to gather people from different places to take part in the violence… Women and children were made to block the roads under the Jafrabad Metro Station on February 23 to create tension amidst the neighbourhood people. The same day, schools of minority children (were) vacated under their premeditated conspiracy,” the FIR states.

The probe was later taken over by the Special Investigation Team of the Special Cell, which is looking into the alleged conspiracy.

In a chargesheet filed by the Delhi Police Crime Branch against suspended AAP councillor Tahir Hussain, the investigating officer has alleged that on January 8, more than a month before the riots, Hussain met with Umar Khalid and Khalid Saifi of ‘United Against Hate’ at the Shaheen Bagh anti-CAA protest, and Umar asked him “to be prepared for something big/riots at the time of Trump’s visit” and that “he and other PFI members will help him (Hussain) financially”. That chargesheet has been filed in Karkardooma court.

Khalid’s lawyer Trideep Pais had told The Indian Express on Saturday that the allegations against Khalid were “completely false, fabricated and procured illegally through duress”.

At a press conference on September 4, Khalid had said there were two kinds of law being followed — one for supporters of the ruling party and another for the common people against whom “evidence was being manufactured”.

“There is an attempt to rewrite history of the past six months in front of our eyes and give it an official stamp,” he had said.

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