Protest erupts against assault on student for waving Kannada flag

News Network
December 1, 2022

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Belegavi, Dec 1: Activists of Kannada organisations staged sit-in protest and blocked movement of traffic at RPD Circle, Tilakwadi on Thursday demanding action against police officials who allegedly assaulted a student for displaying Kannada flag during a fest organised by KLS Gogte PU College on Wednesday evening.

Activists were detained while attempting to gain entry in the premises of the college to protest against the alleged incident.

It all started after one of the students of the host college was beaten up by another student for dancing with the Kannada flag during the fest. While videos of the fight between the two students went viral on social media, the minor student who was beaten up at the college accused Deputy Commissioner of Police (Law and Order) Ravindra Gadadi and Assistant Commissioner of Police (Market Subdivision) N V Baramani of abusing and assaulting him when he went to file a complaint.

Activists of Karnataka Rakshana Vedike and Karnataka Rakshana Vedike Swambhimani staged sit-in protest at RPD Circle and blocked traffic movement. They raised slogans against police officials for allegedly assaulting the student. They also set a tyre on fire to express their ire.

"A student during the fest had displayed his love for Kannada and him being assaulted was not acceptable. Even police officials assaulted him and action needs to be taken against concerned officials," Karnataka Rakshana Vedike District president Deepak Gudagnatti said.

Activists later staged demonstration in front of the college gate and one of them tied the Kannada flag atop the arch. They raised slogans condemning the incident. Police detained some activists when they attempted to enter the college premises.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Law and Order) Ravindra Gadadi said, "Both the students involved in the incident were Kannadigas and minors. We had brought them to the police station and told them not to bring linguistic issues in educational institutions. The incident had taken place when students were dancing and it was a spontaneous reaction."

Authorities of the KLS Gogte PU College expressed regret over the incident. "We will review the incident and take action against those responsible," they said.

Additional police personnel has been deployed near the college and RPD Circle to ensure that no untoward incidents take place. 

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News Network
January 20,2023

Moscow, Jan 20: Russia has warned that if the West provides Ukraine with longer-range missiles, the war will escalate, almost a year into the Russian military operation in the ex-Soviet republic.

At a press call on Thursday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, "Potentially, this is extremely dangerous, it will mean bringing the conflict to a whole new level, which, of course, will not bode well from the point of view of global and pan-European security."

Peskov's warning came on the eve of a donor meeting of Ukraine's allies chaired by the United States at the US airbase in Ramstein, Germany, for a new round of talks on supplying Ukraine with more powerful weapons.

Russia started its "special military operation" in Ukraine with the declared aim of "de-Nazifying" the country on February 24, 2022. Since then, the US and Europe have imposed waves of unprecedented economic sanctions on Moscow and have given Ukraine tens of billions of dollars' worth of weaponry, including rocket systems, drones, armored vehicles and communications systems. The Kremlin has time and again warned the sanctions and the Western military assistance will only prolong the war.

On Wednesday, Russian Ambassador to the US Anatoly Antonov said the US is encouraging Ukraine to commit terrorist acts against Russia, as Washington signaled it was okay with Kiev hitting Russian-controlled Crimea with Western weapons. The Russian envoy was reacting to comments by US State Department spokesman Ned Price, who said a few hours earlier that it was up to Kiev to decide whether to use Western weapons against Russian forces in Crimea, which was Ukrainian territory before joining Russia.

"It should become obvious to everyone: no matter what weapons the Americans or NATO supply to the Zelensky regime, we will destroy it," Antonov said at the time, referring to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. "It is simply impossible to defeat Russia," he added.

Crimea declared independence from Ukraine on March 17, 2014 and formally applied to become part of Russia following a referendum a day earlier. Moscow defends Crimea’s reunification with Russia as legitimate, saying more than 90 percent of the people in the Black Sea peninsula voted in favor of rejoining the country in the plebiscite. The West, however, brands the reunification as the annexation of the Ukrainian land by Russia, which strongly rejects the allegation and henceforth considers the peninsula as an inalienable part of the Russian Federation.

In siding with Ukraine, the European Union followed Washington's lead in imposing several rounds of sanctions against Moscow.

In a statement on Thursday, the US Forces Korea (USFK) said the US Department of Defense had asked it to offer some of its equipment to support Ukraine. Two days earlier, the New York Times reported that the US military was tapping into a massive but little-known stockpile of American arms stored in Israel to help Ukraine's army, which desperately needs artillery shells in the current war with Russia.

Ukraine urges allies 

Separately in the day, Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba and Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov jointly called on Western allies to "considerably" boost arms deliveries to Kiev and send modern German-made Leopard tanks. "We appeal to all partner states that have already provided military assistance or are planning to provide it with a call to considerably reinforce their practical contribution to strengthening Ukraine's ability to defend itself," the pair said in a statement.

The Ukrainian ministers said Russia "retains a substantial quantitative advantage in troops, weapons and military equipment" and that the Kremlin is "determined to further escalate hostilities."

According to Kuleba and Reznikov, the supply of modern armored vehicles is "one of the most pressing and urgent needs."

‘Moscow will do all it can to ‘sober up’ EU, NATO’

During a visit to Moscow's close ally Belarus on Thursday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Moscow would do all it could to "sober up" the European Union and NATO, which he alleged that have determined to weaken and defeat Russia. In his televised comments, Russia's top diplomat said that the Kremlin would set out to disabuse Western politicians of what he called their "presumptuous" and "colonial" attitudes to Russia. "I hope that the sobering up will come. We will do everything so that our colleagues from NATO and the European Union sober up as soon as possible," Lavrov said. 

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News Network
January 22,2023

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Chandrapur, Jan 22: A police mock drill in a temple in Chandrapur in Maharashtra landed in controversy after the personnel posing as terrorists were allegedly shouting slogans connected to a particular community.

A group of lawyers has submitted a memorandum to the district police authorities on the issue, while Superintendent of Police Ravindrasingh Pardeshi on Sunday said all efforts would be taken to ensure such an error is not repeated.

The mock drill, which was conducted on January 11 at the renowned Mahakali Temple here, enacted a scene in which a group of terrorists took over a place of worship and held devotees hostage before being apprehended by security forces. 

"Videos of the drill showing the personnel who played the part of terrorists in the mock drill shouting particular slogans. This portrays one community in a negative light and makes one believe all terrorists are from this community," said Farat Baig, part of lawyers' group here.

"We have submitted a memorandum to the office of the district SP against such sloganeering and portrayal. This act of the police amounts to defaming a community. Obviously, the script of the mock drill must have been overseen by the SP and other senior officials," Baig said.

When contacted, SP Ravindrasingh Pardeshi said his department will "take necessary steps to ensure such an error is not repeated". The mock drill was carried out by personnel from the local police, the Anti-Terrorism Squad, the specialised combat unit C-60, among others, officials said.

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News Network
January 22,2023

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Bengaluru, Jan 22: Shivananda Patil, who was announced as the JD(S) candidate for the next assembly elections in Karnataka, passed away due to a heart attack late on Friday night. He was 54.

Former Karnataka Chief Minister and party leader HD Kumaraswamy shared the news of Shivananda Patil's demise on his official Twitter handle.

HD Kumaraswamy wrote on Twitter, "The untimely death of party candidate Mr Sivananda Patil has left me deeply shocked. Mr. Patil, who retired after selfless service in the army, had an irrepressible desire for social service. Possessing excellent organizational skills and dynamism, he became very dear to me within a short time of our acquaintance." (sic)

"I am personally deeply saddened by the passing away of Mr. Sivananda Patil. I pray that his soul rests in eternal peace and his family gets strength to bear the grief," the former Karnataka CM wrote.

Patil was announced as the JD(S) candidate from Sindagi constituency. On January 18, he participated in JDS pancharatna yatra in Sindagi along with Kumaraswamy. He was a retired army serviceman.

Sivananda is survived by his wife, son and daughter.

The JD(S) also expressed its grief over Patil's demise tweeted, "Deeply saddened to report that Mr Sivananda Patil, JDS candidate for Sindagi Assembly Constituency passed away untimely due to heart attack. On this occasion, we pray that his family gets the strength to bear this grief. Let us pray for the departed soul to rest in peace."

Assembly elections are due in Karnataka in April-May 2023. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) that has set a target of winning at least 150 of the 224 assembly seats in Karnataka, has made it explicitly clear that it has no plans to partner or ally with the Janata Dal (Secular) or JD(S) in the state.

Since its formation, the JD(S) has never formed a government on its own, but had been in power twice in coalition with the BJP in 2006 and with Congress for 14 months after the May 2018 Assembly polls- with Kumaraswamy as the chief minister. In the 2018 polls, the JD(S) managed to win 37 seats.

This time the party has set an ambitious target of winning at least 123 out of the total 224 seats going to polls by May, and has been seeking votes repeatedly invoking regional Kannadiga pride and asserting itself to be the only Kannadiga party.

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