Israel bombed Al-Jazeera as punishment for ‘fake news’? Many in India believe so!

Mafazah Sharafuddin
May 22, 2021

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On May 15, Israel bombarded a residential building in Gaza which housed the offices of Al-Jazeera and Associated Press. Even as the global community condemned the barbaric attack on the media, the Sangh Parivar members in India resorted to celebration on social media and went on to portray the cowardly act of Israeli air force as a “punishment for airing fake news”

Both Al-Jazeera and Associated press have lost valuable footage, equipments and documents in the attack on the eleven story building. 

“Al-Jazeera was punished for broadcasting Fake news about Israeli attack on Palestine. Now all the other media are careful about the news they are publishing about Israel,” a viral message on WhatsApp and other social media platforms stated.

The mischievous message, which was widely circulated by the Sangh Parivar activists, also lauded Israel for having the “guts” to punish the media. 

According to reliable sources, an hour preceding the bombing, the Israeli military sent a warning so the residents of the building could evacuate. AP reportedly made several attempts to contact the Israeli military, foreign minister and prime minister’s office. Their concerns were either ignored, or they were told that there was nothing that could be done to stop the attack. A video broadcasted by Al-Jazeera shows the owner of the building Jawwad Mahdi imploring the military to allow them to retrieve their equipment. 

The video of Jawwad Mahdi speaking on the phone to the officer has since been widely shared on social media. He is heard asking them to allow just four people to enter the building to get their equipment that had documented the situation in Gaza out before the attack took place. He asked for ten more minutes. The Israeli military swiftly denied his request, saying that they had already been given an hour to evacuate. The building was then bombed.

Press freedom groups worldwide have condemned the attack. They have accused the Israeli military of using claims of a Hamas presence to curb the coverage of the incessant attacks upon Gaza. The International Press Institute, a world renowned network of media personnel has deemed the attack a “gross violation of human rights and internationally agreed norms.”

The Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, explained the situation, only saying that there was a Hamas presence in the building. “It was not an innocent building,” he said.

The official reason given by the military, as well as the Prime Minister is staunchly that there was a Hamas presence in the building, and they were trying to eradicate it. There have been no unofficial or official claims from Israeli officials indicating that the attack was some kind of retaliation or punishment for ‘fake news’.

While this affected the amount of coverage the situation in Gaza has, the military has stuck with the reasoning that it was simply combatting Hamas.

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News Network
June 15,2021

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Hubballi, June 15: A Hubballi-bound Indigo plane suffered a tyre burst while landing here, airport authorities said on Tuesday.

However, all the passengers and crew members were safe.

In an official statement, Indigo Airlines said, "IndiGo ATR operating 6e-7979 from Kannur to Hubballi reported Tyre Burst at Hubli upon arrival yesterday (Monday) evening. All passengers and crew are safe. Aircraft is currently under maintenance checks at Hubballi."

According to an official at the airport, the plane had touched down first 8.03 pm on Monday but due to crosswind, it took off immediately and went around. It landed again at about 8.35 pm.

"Probably due to hard landing and crosswind, the tyre burst," the official said.

All passengers were disembarked at the airport itself and the runway was cleared by 2 am on Tuesday.

"The flight operations are now normal. We have informed the ATC about the incident," the official added. 

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News Network
June 14,2021

As covid-19 cases see a decline, Karnataka has eased restrictions in some parts of the state while retaining the strict lockdown in other districts till the positivity rate falls.

The Covid-19 lockdown will continue in 11 districts in Karnataka, which have a high positivity rate, till June 21. However, some relaxations have been allowed in the rest of the 19 districts including Bengaluru Urban and Udupi from today (June 14).

Among the relaxations included are extended operational hours for essential shops (vegetables, groceries, milk, meat, etc). Industrial units can operate at 50% of the capacity but all other businesses will remain shut. 

Cloth and footwear merchants, jewellers, sweet vendors, et al cannot resume business as yet. These businesses have remained shut for almost two months now. 

The weekend curfew will kick in from 7 pm on Friday till 5 am on Monday. On all weekdays, night curfew will be in force from 7 pm to 5 am. 

During these hours, movement of people is strictly prohibited. But patients and their attendants requiring emergency need, eligible people intending to take vaccination shall be allowed movement with minimal proof, the order said. 

Here is what is allowed and not allowed from June 14 to June 21:

* All industries will be allowed to open with 50 per cent staff, however, garment industries will function with 30 per cent employees. The establishments are ordered to strictly adher to Covid-19 restrictions. 

* Shops related to food, groceries, fruits and vegetables, meat and fish, dairy and milk booths, and animal fodder shall be allowed to function from 6 am to 2 pm. The same rules apply to PDS shops. 

* Standalone liquor shops will be also allowed from 6 am to 2 pm.

* Parks will be allowed to open from 5 am to 10 am for walking and jogging but group activities are prohibited and Covid-appropriate behavior is mandated. 

* Street vendors can do business from 6 am to 2 pm. 

* Skill training activities related to health sector are allowed. 

* Optical shops are also allowed to function from 6 am to 2 pm. 

* Auto rickshaws and cabs will be allowed to operate with maximum of two passengers only.

* In addition to the already operating government offices, these offices are permitted with 50 per cent staff: Agriculture and allied offices, PWD, Housing, RTOs, Cooperation, NABARD and offices of Department of Revenue, Government of India. 

* Daily night curfew from 7 pm till 5 am will be in place. All movement of public is prohibited except for essential services and health emergencies. Movement of transport goods and vehicles is allowed. Travel for boarding train, plane or bus is allowed. Ecommerce activities are also allowed during the night curfew. 

* There will be no prohibition on inter-district travel

* All construction activities and shops related to construction activities, particularly cement and steel, are permitted to function outside containment zones.

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News Network
June 3,2021

Bengaluru, June 3: As the Covid-19 situation in Karnataka is not under “complete control”, Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa on Thursday extended existing lockdown till 6 am on June 14.

"This is based on experts' advice," he said.

Yediyurappa also announced a second Covid-19 relief package worth Rs 500 crore.

On Wednesday, the chief minister had held a meeting with ministers and senior officials, discussing the measures to be taken in the coming days. 

Earlier, the Covid-19 Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) had recommended that the lockdown be continued in Karnataka even after June 7. 

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