Kuwait Emir reappoints Sheikh Sabah al-Khalid as PM

News Network
November 23, 2021

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Kuwait City, Nov 23: Kuwait's Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah al-Khalid has been reappointed prime minister, state media said on Tuesday, and tasked with forming a cabinet that would be the Gulf OPEC oil producer's third this year in a domestic political standoff.

State news agency KUNA said Sheikh Sabah, prime minister since late 2019, was reappointed by an emiri order issued by Crown Prince Sheikh Meshal al-Ahmad al-Sabah. The government had resigned on Nov. 8 in the standoff with the elected parliament.

Emir Sheikh Nawaf al-Ahmed al-Sabah last week temporarily handed over some of his main constitutional duties to the crown prince, his designated successor, including naming the prime minister and swearing in the cabinet.  

Before doing so, the emir had accepted the government's resignation as part of measures to end a months-long deadlock between the government and opposition lawmakers. He also issued an amnesty pardoning political dissidents to defuse the row.

Several opposition MPs had wanted to question Sheikh Sabah on various issues, including the handling of the coronavirus pandemic and corruption, despite a motion in March that had granted him temporary immunity.

The row had paralysed legislative work, hindering fiscal reform efforts, including a debt law that would allow Kuwait to tap international markets.

State finances are set to improve this year thanks to higher oil prices, after the coronavirus downturn led to a budget deficit of 15.4% of GDP in the 2020/21 fiscal year.

Kuwait has given its legislature more influence than similar bodies in other Gulf monarchies, including the power to pass and block laws, question ministers and submit no-confidence votes against senior government officials.

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News Network
January 8,2022

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New Delhi: In an open letter, a group of students and faculty members from the Indian Institute of Management requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to speak up against hate speech and caste-based violence in the country.

The signatories said that the PM's silence on these issues was emboldening the hate-filled voices.

"Your silence, Honourable Prime Minister, emboldens the hate-filled voices and threatens the unity and integrity of our country. We request you, Honourable Prime Minister, to stand firm against forces that seek to divide us," the students and the faculty said in their letter.

The letter comes in light of the recent Haridwar Dharam sansad event where some Hindu religious leaders urged people to take up arms against Muslims and called for genocide.

"Hate speeches and calls for violence against communities based on religion/caste identities is unacceptable," the letter said.

The signatories said that even though the Indian Constitution provided the right to practice one's religion in dignity, there was a sense of fear in the country.

"There is a sense of fear in our country now - places of worship, including churches in recent days, are being vandalised, and there have been calls to take arms against our Muslim brothers and sisters. All of this is carried out with impunity and without any fear of due process," they wrote.

"Your silence, Honourable Prime Minister, emboldens the hate-filled voices and threatens the unity and integrity of our country. We request you, Honourable Prime Minister, to stand firm against forces that seek to divide us," the students and the faculty said in their letter.

The letter was signed by 183 signatories, including 13 faculty members, students and faculty members of IIM-Ahmedabad and IIM-Bengaluru.

At the Haridwar event, a Hindu religious leader, Sant Kalicharan Maharaj, declares that the aim of Islam is to capture the nation through politics.

In the controversial speech, clips of which have gone viral, Kalicharan Maharaj also urged people to elect a "staunch Hindu leader" to "protect" Hinduism.

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News Network
January 11,2022

Bengaluru, Jan 11: Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, who tested positive for Covid-19, was shifted to a private hospital on Tuesday. The doctors have stated that the CM was showing mild symptoms and there was no problem as such.

CM Bommai was shifted to hospital on the suggestion of doctors and a few tests will be conducted on him. He turned positive for Covid on Monday and was kept in home isolation.

Bommai has called for a high-level virtual meeting of senior officers and technical committee members on Tuesday to analyse the Covid-19 situation in the state.

Bommai's son and daughter-in-law also tested positive for the virus on Tuesday. However, CM Bommai's wife and daughter have tested negative. Bharath Bommai, the son of CM took to social media said, "I have tested positive for Covid with very mild symptoms. I have isolated myself at home. I would like the people who have come in contact with me to kindly get themselves tested."

His family members were tested following the development. CM Bommai was working from his R T Nagar residence, Race Course Road Government Office and Home Office Krishna. All the staff of these offcies have been tested and their reports are awaited.

Health Minister K Sudhakar stated that he is voluntarily undergoing self-isolation for the next two days since he happened to be a primary contact of CM Bommai. "The Abbott ID Now' test done and it is negative. I will undergo RT-PCR test again after two days," he said.

"Although I am completely asymptomatic and doing absolutely fine, as a responsible citizen, I will undergo self-isolation for two days considering the health and safety of others. All my official programmes stand cancelled and I will continue to work through virtual platforms," he maintained.

"I will undergo RT-PCR test after two days and if the report comes negative I will resume work from Wednesday," Sudhakar said.

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News Network
January 10,2022

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Islamabad, Jan 10: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday alleged that minorities in India were being targeted by extremist groups and warned that such an agenda "is a real and present threat" to regional peace.

Khan took to Twitter to make the allegations in the wake of alleged inflammatory and provocative speeches against Muslims at an event in Haridwar in Uttarakhand held in December.

On his Twitter handle, Khan also questioned whether the BJP government supports the call for genocide of minorities in India, especially the 200 million Muslim community.

“It is high time international community took note & acted,” he further said.

In another tweet, Khan accused the BJP-led government of targeting minorities in India, adding that the extremist agenda “is a real and present threat to peace in our region.”

“The continuing silence of Modi govt on the call at an extremist Hindutva summit in Dec for genocide of minorities in India, especially the 200 mn Muslim community, begs the question whether the BJP govt supports this call. It is high time international community took note & acted(sic),” he tweeted.

Last month, Pakistan's Foreign Office summoned India’s Charge d’Affaires and conveyed its concern over the alleged hate speeches made at the Haridwar conclave.

Pakistan conveyed to the Indian side that the reported hate speeches were viewed with grave concern by the civil society and a cross-section of people in the country.

Held in Haridwar from December 17-20, the Dharma Sansad was organised by Yati Narasimhanand Giri of the Juna Akhada, who is already under police scanner for making hate speeches and inciting violence against Muslims.

At the event, several speakers allegedly made inflammatory and provocative speeches, calling for the killing of people from the minority community.

Two FIRs have been lodged against 15 people in the case, including Waseem Rizvi who changed his name to Jitendra Narayan Tyagi after converting to Hinduism recently and organiser of the Sansad Yati Narasimhanand, the head priest of Dasna temple in Ghaziabad.

A five-member Special Investigation Team has been constituted to look into the matter.

India's Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear a Public interest litigation (PIL) seeking action against those who made hate speeches during the recent conclave.

A bench headed by Chief Justice N V Ramana took note of the submissions of senior advocate Kapil Sibal that no action has been taken against those who made the hate speeches despite registration of FIR.

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