Fruit merchant arrested in Karnataka’s Koppal over terror link suspicion

News Network
September 26, 2022

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Koppal, Sept 26: A fruit merchant was arrested in Karnataka's Koppal district by the police said on Monday over suspicion of his links with the Islamic State (IS) terror group.

The arrested person was identified as Shabbir Mandalagiri, a resident of Binnigida region in Gangavathy town, where he worked.

According to the police, Mandalagiri had ties with Maaz Munir and Syed Yasin, the two suspects who were arrested earlier. Mandalagiri's residence was raided on Sunday midnight after which he was arrested, the police added.

Meanwhile, the Shivamogga police investigating the case have intensified operations to nab Mohammad Shariq, a cloth salesman, who is the kingpin in Karnataka.

Shariq managed to escape after the arrest of Maaz Munir and Syed Yasin.

According to police, the arrested suspects confessed to having conducted trial blasts successfully on the banks of Tunga Bhadra River and burnt Indian flag. 

The accused came into the limelight after the arrest of Jabiulla in connection with a stabbing case following the row over the Veer Savarkar flex row in Shivamogga. 

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News Network
November 14,2022

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Mangaluru, Nov 14: Amidst ongoing protest against the “unfair” toll collection at Surathkal toll plaza, the central government has finally yielded to people’s demanded. However, the government has decided to collect an additional user fee at the Hejamadi toll plaza.

Dakshina Kannada MP and Karnataka BJP president Nalin Kumar Kateel, in a tweet announced today that toll collection has stopped at Surathkal toll gate.

He thanked Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “The union minister had assured earlier that the toll gate will be closed. However the technical aspect is implemented now,” he tweeted. 

The Gazette notification dated November 11, 2022 read: “Now, in order to collect user fee for 4-lane Surathkal Nantoor section and 1.60 Km of bypass length from Nantoor towards Padil (total length 18.362 km) at Hejamadi toll plaza… the Concessionaire (i.e. Navayuga Udupi Tollway Pvt Ltd) shall collect additional user fee for the use of said section from Km 358.000 to Km 375.300 of National Highway No. 17 (New Highway No.66) (Surathakal Nantoor section) and 1.60 Km of bypass length from Nantoor towards Padil.”

Earlier, Mr Kateel had promised to close of the Surathkal toll gate by November 7. As the deadline crossed, the Surathkal Toll gate Horata Samiti had intensified the protest.

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News Network
November 13,2022

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Mangaluru, Nov 13: The health department has warned schools to be cautious in the wake of increase in cases of conjunctivitis after the rainy season in the coastal district of Dakshina Kannada. 

Schools have been advised to take precautions to prevent the spread of pink-eye disease among children. Cases of conjunctivitis, inflammation, or infection of the outer membrane of the eyeball and the inner eyelid are being reported at many places across the district. The health department suggested that children stay at home till they are cured.

DHO Dr Kishore Kumar M said that the department has been receiving information about the spread of cases in many schools in the district. 

“Parents have also requested that precautions need to be taken in schools. So I have spoken to the deputy director of public instructions to take note of the issue and direct schools to take necessary precautions. We have suggested that schools may grant holidays till children are cured when they are infected with conjunctivitis. In fact, the district started reporting cases ever since the rain stopped,” Dr Kumar explained.

It is difficult to prevent the spread of the infection when one of the family members or a student suffers from it. It spreads most often through direct contact with the eye by hands or objects like towels that are contaminated with the virus or bacteria. So there is a need to avoid direct contact with objects that infected persons have used. Since it also spreads through houseflies, those infected should always wear sunglasses, he said.

He cautioned against the use of coconut oil or any other oils as eye drops for conjunctivitis. All government hospitals have sufficient stock of eye drops required to treat patients with conjunctivitis. In case of severe infection, people should compulsorily consult an ophthalmologist, Dr Kumar added.

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News Network
November 26,2022

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Beijing, Nov 26: China held a meeting this week with 19 countries from the Indian Ocean region in which India was conspicuously absent.

The China International Development Cooperation Agency (CIDCA), an organisation connected with the Chinese Foreign Ministry held a meeting of the China-Indian Ocean Region Forum on Development Cooperation on November 21, in which 19 countries took part, according to a press release issued by the organisation.

The meeting was held in a hybrid manner under the theme of "Shared Development: Theory and Practice from the Perspective of the Blue Economy" in Kunming, Yunnan Province, it said.

Representatives of 19 countries, including Indonesia, Pakistan, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Maldives, Nepal, Afghanistan, Iran, Oman, South Africa, Kenya, Mozambique, Tanzania, Seychelles, Madagascar, Mauritius, Djibouti, Australia and representatives of 3 international organisations were present, it said.

India was reportedly not invited, according to informed sources here.

Last year, China held a meeting with some South Asian countries on Covid-19 vaccine cooperation without the participation of India.

CIDCA is headed by Luo Zhaohui, the former Vice Foreign Minister and Ambassador to India.

According to the official website of the organisation, he is the Secretary of the CPC (the ruling Communist Party of China) Leadership Group of CIDCA.

CIDCA’s official website said the aims of the organisation is to formulate strategic guidelines, plans and policies for foreign aid, coordinate and offer advice on major foreign aid issues, advance the country's reforms in matters involving foreign aid, and identify major programmes, supervise and evaluate their implementation.

During his tour of Sri Lanka in January this year, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi proposed to establish a “forum on the development of Indian Ocean Island Countries.”

When asked whether the CIDCA meeting is the same that is proposed by Wang, the Chinese Foreign Ministry here has clarified to the media that the November 21 meeting was not part of it.

At the November 21 meeting, China has proposed to establish a marine disaster prevention and mitigation cooperation mechanism between China and countries in the Indian Ocean region, the CIDCA press release said.

China is ready to provide necessary financial, material, and technical support to countries in need, it said.

China is vying for influence in the strategic Indian Ocean region with substantial investments in ports and infrastructure investments in several countries, including Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

While China has established a full-fledged naval base in Djibouti, its first outside the country, Beijing has acquired the Hambantota port in Sri Lanka on a 99-year lease besides building the port at Pakistan’s Gwadar in the Arabian Sea opposite India’s western coast besides infrastructure investments in the Maldives.

The Chinese forum apparently is aimed at countering India’s strong influence in the Indian Ocean region where India-backed organisations like the Indian Ocean Rim Association, (IORA), which has a membership of 23 countries have taken strong roots.

China is a dialogue partner in the IORA formed in 1997.

IORA became an observer to the UN General Assembly and the African Union in 2015.

Besides the IORA, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has proposed “Security and Growth for All in the Region” (SAGAR) in 2015 for active cooperation among the littoral countries of the Indian Ocean region.

The Indian Navy-backed ‘Indian Ocean Naval Symposium’ (IONS) seeks to increase maritime cooperation among navies of the region.

Since the June 2020 Galwan Valley clash between Chinese and Indian armies, bilateral ties have been severely hit.

India has consistently maintained that peace and tranquillity along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) are important for the overall development of bilateral relations with China.

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