Gyanvapi Mosque Case: Close off area where suspected ‘shivling’ found, says UP court

News Network
May 16, 2022

Varanasi, May 16: Shortly after a stunning claim that a suspected "shivling" had been found in a pond within the Gyanvapi Masjid complex in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi, a court today ordered it closed off to the public.

According to the Hindutva lawyer, the "Shivling" or relic of the idol of Shiva was found on the last day of the court-mandated filming of the mosque complex following a petition seeking access to pray at a shrine behind the mosque.

This morning, water was drained from the pond and a "Shivling" was found, claimed Subhash Nandan Chaturvedi, the lawyer representing a group of Hindu women who have sought year-long access to pray at the shrine.

The pond, which is used for the Islamic "Wuzu" or purification rituals, must be sealed after the find, the petitioners requested the court. The court accepted the plea and ordered the Varanasi District Magistrate to ensure that the pond is not used, for now.

The court also said the District Magistrate, the police chief and a top Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) officer would make sure no one entered the sealed area.

Reports of a "shivling" being found within the mosque complex were not confirmed by the Varanasi District Magistrate, Kaushal Raj Sharma, when he spoke to the media earlier.

"No details of the survey of Gyanvapi mosque were disclosed by any member of the commission. The court is the custodian of the information about the survey. One member was debarred from the commission for about a few minutes yesterday, later admitted to the commission," Mr Sharma had told reporters.

The Gyanvapi mosque is located close to the iconic Kashi Vishwanath temple. The five women petitioners have asked the court to allow daily prayers before idols on its outer walls as well as other "visible and invisible deities within the old temple complex".

The site is currently open for prayers once a year.

The Varanasi Civil Court then ordered a video assessment of the mosque complex, including three domes, underground basements and the pond, and appointed a court commissioner for the task.

A part of this survey took place on May 6 but was halted after a dispute broke out over filming inside the mosque. The mosque committee said the court had not ordered videography inside the mosque.

The court-ordered filming was challenged before Allahabad High Court, which dismissed the case in April. The High Court order was challenged in the Supreme Court.

A lawyer representing the Gyanvapi Mosque trust that approached the Supreme Court against the filming order said it is at odds with the Places of Worship Act, 1991. The Supreme Court refused to stop the filming but agreed to consider listing the plea against the survey of the mosque complex.

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News Network
June 26,2022

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Strikes in Europe's transport sector have disrupted air flights and train schedules as transportation companies struggle to cope with rising demand at the start of the peak summer travel season after the COVID restrictions were lifted.

A strike by staff members at Irish airline Ryanair and Brussels Airlines over pay and working conditions forced the cancellation of a number of flights on Saturday.

The workers' strike also disrupted flight schedules in Spain, Italy, France, Portugal and Belgium.

Since Friday, low-budget airline Ryanair has been forced to cancel 127 flights, an airport spokeswoman told AFP on Saturday.

The walkout forced the cancellation of two flights between Lisbon and Brussels.

The airports at Bordeaux and Marseille said nine and 12 flights respectively would be cancelled on Sunday.

Ryanair flights were also cancelled in France. Damien Mourgues of the SNPNC union said 36 out of 80 flights had been cancelled because of a walk-out by air stewards.

In Belgium, the walkout meant that only 41 percent of Ryanair flights left Charleroi airport near Brussels on Saturday.

The situation in Belgium was further complicated by a three-day strike by Brussels Airlines staff ending on Saturday. The strike has forced the carrier, which is owned by German giant Lufthansa, to cancel about 300 out of 500 flights since

Adding to Europe's traveling problems, Austria Airlines said on Saturday it had had to cancel 52 out of 360 scheduled flights.

USO transport union in Spain said 75 flights from six different cities had been cancelled, noting that the striking staff had been replaced by workers brought in from Morocco, which it cited as a violation on Thursday.

Unions have called for EasyJet cabin crew based in Spain to strike for nine days in July as part of a dispute over pay.

The Swiss airline has already had to cancel thousands of flights this summer because of staff shortages at airports.

Staff shortage

The aviation sector is still struggling to recover from the COVID pandemic which led to staff-cuts as international travel was put on hold.

However, a rise in the number of COVID infections reported by Austria Airlines staff on Saturday led to the cancellation of its flights.

"Our crew members are sick, cases of infection are rising," an Austria Airlines spokeswoman told AFP.

Faced with staff shortages, Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport was also forced to announce earlier this month that it would be limiting traveler numbers this summer and cancelling flights.

The shortages have already caused hundreds of flights to be cancelled, while huge queues have angered travelers.

In the UK, the railway system once again came to a halt on Saturday. 

Over the week, tens of thousands of workers have walked in Britain's biggest rail strike in 30 years, with millions of passengers facing days of chaos as both the unions and government have stuck to their guns in a row over pay.

The British transport union, the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT), threatened to continue the industrial action until managers address the workers' grievances, and meet their salary demands.

Despite the ongoing negotiations between representatives from the management and staff, media predicted the strikes to continue.

They attributed further industrial action to the rapidly rising inflation rates exacerbated by sluggish economic growth, saying this combo will likely lead to more workers' strikes across the European continent in the summer ahead.

Unions have said the rail strikes could mark the start of a "summer of discontent" with teachers, medics, waste disposal workers and even barristers heading for industrial action as inflation pushes 10%.

Inflation has soared across Europe on the back of a major rise in energy costs and Britain is not alone in facing strikes. 

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News Network
June 28,2022

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The digital arm of Reliance Industries, Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd, on Tuesday, June 28, announced that Ambani would resign as the director of the company effective from 27 June.

In a regulatory filing, Reliance Jio said the company's board at a meeting on 27 June, "approved the appointment of Akash M Ambani, non-executive director, as chairman of the board of directors of the company."

Among other appointments, Pankaj Mohan Pawar will take over as the Managing Director of the company from 27 June.

Raminder Singh Gujral and KV Chowdary were appointed independent directors.

In 2021, Ambani said that his kids were taking more responsibilities as part of the leadership shift. He said he could see in his children the same spark and potential of his father Dhirubhai Ambani – Reliance’s founder – for contributing to the country's growth.

Few things to know about Akash Ambani

- Akash Ambani, who has graduated from Brown University with a major in Economics, has been closely involved with the disruptive and inclusive growth path charted by the digital services and consumer retail propositions of Reliance group and is now leading the creation of the ‘convergence dividend’ for over 500 million consumers.

- Akash has been closely involved with the creation of the digital ecosystem around Jio’s 4G proposition. He was closely involved with a team of engineers in inventing and launching an India-specs focussed Jiophone in 2017 which became quite a revolutionary device to take many people out of 2G to 4G.

- He personally led the key acquisitions made by Jio in the digital space in the last few years and has also been keenly involved with development of new technologies and capabilities including AI-ML and blockchain.

 Akash was integrally involved in the trailblazing global investments by tech majors and investors in 2020, which in many ways catapulted Jio onto the global investor map.

The Board of Directors have at their meeting held on 27 June, 2022:

(a) approved the appointment of Raminder Singh Gujral and KV Chowdary, as Additional Directors of the Company, designated as Independent Directors for a period of 5 (five) years commencing from 27 June, 2022, subject to approval of the shareholders

(b) approved the appointment of Pankaj Mohan Pawar as Managing Director of the Company for a period of five (5) years commencing from 27 June, 2022, subject to approval of the shareholders

(c) noted the resignation of Mukesh D Ambani as Director of the Company effective from close of working hours on 27 June, 2022

(d) approved the appointment of Akash M Ambani, Non-executive Director as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Company.

"In accordance with the circular dated June 20, 2018, issued by the Stock Exchanges, we hereby confirm that Raminder Singh Gujral and KV Chowdary are not debarred from holding the office of Director by virtue of any Securities and Exchange Board of India order or any other such authority," the company added.

Established in 2019, Jio Platforms, wholly-owned by RIL, is an Indian technology company.

Shares of Reliance Industries closed at 2,529.00 apieace on BSE, 1.49% higher than yesterday's close. At the NSE, it climbed by 1.50% to settle at ₹2530.00 apiece.

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News Network
June 17,2022

Bengaluru, June 17: Amid nationwide protest against the ‘Agnipath’ scheme, the government of Karnataka has been trying to douse the anger of the army job aspirants by promising to hire ‘Agnipath’ soldiers into the police force.

Speaking to media persons Home Minister Araga Jnanendra today hit out at the youngsters who are protesting against the government’s controversial military recruitment policy. 

“We have planned that such 4-year military trainees can be recruited for the police,” Jnanendra told reporters. 

The BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh have announced a similar move amid protests against the ‘Agnipath’ scheme. 

Conceding that unemployment is “a burning issue forcing youngsters to take up jobs for just Rs 5,000”, Jnanendra said the ‘Agnipath’ scheme will benefit lakhs of aspirants. “After military service, they can be selected for services in the police and security establishments. On what basis are people protesting? I don't understand,” he said. 

“In countries like Israel, military training for the youth is compulsory. Here, the government wants to give military training for four years with a salary of Rs 30,000-40,000. After that, they’ll be given a lump sum of Rs 12-13 lakh. And, 25 per cent of them will be retained in the military,” the minister explained. 

The Centre and state governments are “looking into” the “forces behind” the ongoing protests, Jnanendra said. “Suddenly, people hit the streets and start torching things. They wear a mask. This is a conspiracy,” he said. “Torching trains and homes against such a good scheme...what can I say?” 

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