1. 9 Indians ‘Missing’ in Attack on 2 NZ Mosques
Nine Indian nationals or people of Indian origin were reported missing after attacks on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, left 49 people dead on Friday, 15 March. Unconfirmed reports mentioned that at least two Indian men had been injured.
The Indian high commission in New Zealand has set up 24×7 helpline numbers to offer assistance and information, official sources said.
Families of those affected are being assisted in getting visas to New Zealand.
2. J&K Admin, MHA Pitch for Assembly Elections in June
There is a strong possibility that assembly elections in Jammu & Kashmir, delinked from the Lok Sabha polls, will be held in June soon after the national elections conclude, views expressed by the state administration and the home ministry indicate.
The likely schedule will also fall after the holy month of Ramzan is over and before the Amarnath Yatra begins. Also, it will be before the current spell of central rule is due to get over in July. The schedule, once finalised, will help address criticism that the state is being denied a representative government.
3. India, Myanmar Target Insurgents in Joint Ops
Even as India and Pakistan were in a tense stand-off in the third and fourth weeks of February on the Western Front, on the Eastern Front, the Indian and the Myanmarese armies were launching a coordinated effort to strike at positions of the so-called Arakan Army, which threatened a crucial connectivity project between the two countries.
The Kaladan Multi-Modal Transit Transport project connects Kolkata port with Sittwe seaport in Myanmar, providing an alternative route to and from India’s northeastern states and reducing pressure on the Siliguri corridor. The project will also connect Sittwe via an inland river system using the Kaladan river and highways to Zorinpui and Aizawl in Mizoram.
(Source: Hindustan Times)
Also Read : Terror camps on India-Myanmar border destroyed
4. France Freezes JeM Chief’s Assets, Will Ask EU to Ban Him
A day after China drew flak for thwarting yet another global attempt to ban Jaish-e-Muhammed chief Masood Azhar, countries are exploring ways to put pressure on Beijing to agree to sanctioning the terrorist, with France taking the first step in announcing a national ban.
“France has decided to sanction Masood Azhar at the national level by freezing his assets in application of Monetary and Financial Code. A joint decree of the ministries of the interior, economy and finance was published today in the official gazette,” a French government statement said.
5. Probe into Bridge Collapse Begins, Two Suspended
Mumbai’s civic authorities suspended on Friday, 15 March, two engineers said to be responsible for auditing and repairing a pedestrian bridge that came crashing down during the evening rush hour a day before, killing six people and injuring 31 others.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) also announced a re-examination of safety audit of 296 bridges in the city and a revamp of a department that overlooks and maintains bridges in India’s financial capital.
6. Jagan Reddy’s Uncle Murdered, SIT Formed to Investigate Case
Allegations of foul play flew hard and fast after YS Vivekananda Reddy, a former state minister and uncle of Yuvajana Sramika Rytu Congress (YSRC) leader YS Jaganmohan Reddy, was found hacked to death. The police confirmed that it was a case of murder and the Andhra Pradesh government moved quickly to set up a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the death.
The YSRC demanded a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and said it suspected the hand of the ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP) in the murder. Citing a knife attack on Jagan Reddy in Visakhapatnam in October 2018, YSRC spokesperson Vasireddy Padma charged that the TDP had been systematically targeting the family of her party leader.
7. Extra-Marital Affair Not Ground for Taking Action Against Govt Staff: Rajasthan HC
The RajasthanHigh Court has ruled that the state government cannot initiate departmental proceedings against a government employee for being involved in an extra-marital relationship.
The single-judge Jaipur bench of the court was hearing a writ petition filed by two police personnel — an inspector and a woman constable — who were suspended in March 2001 for allegedly being involved in an extra-marital affair. The couple, as well as the woman’s child, were also directed to take a DNA test. The court had stayed the suspension order and departmental proceedings till the disposal of the writ petition.
8. Should I Stop Going to School: 400 Kids Against Climate Change
Children from schools in the capital gathered at Central Park in Connaught Place to join the global “Fridays for Future” protest against climate change. The protest was also held in Gurgaon.
Students started rallying for the cause and on Friday, 15 March, students in 112 countries, 1,787 locations over the world, came out in protest. In Delhi, close to 400 students gathered, holding placards and sloganeering.“Fridays for Future” protest was started by Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old Swedish student, in August 2018. It became a regular event and is held on the 15th of every month.
9. DU Admission Starts Early This Year: 15 April
Delhi University is likely to begin its admission process early this year, with registration starting on 15 April and finishing on 7 May.
The university’s Admission Committee in its meeting on Friday, 15 March, also decided to reduce the “deduction of marks from five percent to two percent for change of stream”. As of now, if a student from a science stream, for example, wants to get enrolled in an arts course, their marks are reduced by five percent as penalty.
“As per the tentative schedule for admission for 2019-2020, registration for all undergraduate, postgraduate, MPhil and PhD courses will begin on 15 April and end on 7 May. The portal will reopen on May 20 for two weeks for updating marks and courses. Extracurricular activity and sports trials will start from 20 May,” said Dean of Students’ Welfare Rajeev Gupta, who is also the head of the committee.