QBullet: Caste Clashes Hit Mumbai; Former Soldier Kills 6 with Rod

Read The Quint’s morning news wrap comprising important headlines from the previous day. 

5 min read
Protests flare in Maharashtra

1. Bhima-Koregaon Clashes: Dalits Protest in Mumbai and Pune, CM Fadnavis Orders Probe

A day after a 28-year-old was killed and several injured in clashes that broke out in Bhima-Koregaon and other villages near Pune on the 200th anniversary of the battle between British forces, including Mahars, and the Peshwas, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis ordered a judicial probe into the incident.

The probe was announced as Dalit groups protested in Mumbai, Pune and other parts of Maharashtra on Tuesday over the incident in which groups carrying saffron flags allegedly attacked Dalits headed to the British-built memorial to those who died in the battle of 1818.

As protesters pelted stones at vehicles and stalled traffic on one of Mumbai’s arterial highways, Fadnavis said, “The Bhima-Koregaon incident will be probed by a sitting judge. All aspects related to the incident that led to the conflict would be looked into in detail.”


2. Former Soldier Kills 6 With Iron Rod in 2 Hours in Haryana, Crime Caught on CCTV

A 43-year-old government official went on a killing spree in Haryana’s Palwal town, bludgeoning six persons to death with an iron rod in a two-hour-long mayhem in the early hours of Tuesday, police said.

The accused, Naresh Dhankar, is a sub-divisional officer (SDO) with the Haryana government’s agricultural department in Bhiwani. In 2003, he had taken voluntary retirement from the army as a lieutenant.

Dhankar allegedly went about killing anyone he could find on the street in Palwal, about 90 km from Delhi.

(Source: Hindustan Times)

3. H-1B Visa Rules: Trump Admin Considers Tweak That May Lead to Mass Deportation of Indians

 US Congress has doubled a special fee on the popular H-1B and L-1 visas, raising it to USD 4,500 to fund a 9/11 healthcare act and biometric tracking system
US Congress has doubled a special fee on the popular H-1B and L-1 visas, raising it to USD 4,500 to fund a 9/11 healthcare act and biometric tracking system
(Photo: iStockphoto)

The Trump administration is considering a proposal that could potentially lead to large-scale deportation of foreigners on H-1B visas for high-speciality workers waiting for their Green Card — mostly Indians — and drastically alter the way high-tech companies operate in the United States.

The proposal circulated in the form of an internal memo in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which oversees citizenship and immigration, intends to end the provision of granting extensions to H-1B visa holders whose applications for permanent residency (Green Card) had been accepted.


4. New Headache for Rupani: Solanki Says Kolis Hurt by Portfolio Allocation

Parshottam Solanki
Parshottam Solanki
(Photo: PTI)

In yet another trouble for the Vijay Rupani-led BJP government in Gujarat, Minister of State for Fisheries Parshottam Solanki on Tuesday expressed his displeasure over the allocation of portfolios, saying it has “hurt the sentiments” of his Koli community.

After Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel, Solanki is the second minister to have voiced his displeasure over portfolio allocation.

5. RJD leaders keep fingers crossed ahead of Lalu Prasad’s sentencing on Wednesday

Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leaders and workers are hoping for a jail term less than three years for party patriarch Lalu Prasad when a special CBI court on Wednesday announces the quantum of punishment in a 21-year-old fodder scam case.

The 69-year-old former chief minister of Bihar will be able to seek bail immediately at the lower court only if the sentence is less than three years in the case, related to fraudulent withdrawal of Rs 90 lakh from the Deoghar treasury during 1991-1994.

Besides Lalu Prasad, special judge Shivpal Singh had convicted 15 other people while acquitting six others including former Chief Minister Jagannath Mishra.

(Source: Hindustan Times)


6. Indian Visitors to Taj Mahal to Be Capped at 40k/Day

A high-level meeting in Delhi on Tuesday attended by senior bureaucrats, ASI officials and police and paramilitary officers has decided that starting 20 January, only 40,000 Indian tourists will be allowed to visit the Taj Mahal per day, but there will be no daily limit on the number of foreign tourists.

TOI had reported earlier that the number of tourists visiting the Taj Mahal may be limited for reasons to do with environmental concerns and upkeep, and to prevent stampede-like situations. There is currently no restriction on the number of people entering the monument complex.

The officials later conveyed the decision to Union culture minister Mahesh Sharma. When asked, the minister told TOI the decisions taken at the meeting had been brought to his notice and final approval would come "in a day or two".

(Source: Times of India)

7. Doctors Call off Strike After Government Defers National Medical Commission Bill

Doctors and medical students stage a protest against the National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill that was tabled in Parliament on Friday.
Doctors and medical students stage a protest against the National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill that was tabled in Parliament on Friday.
(Photo: IANS)

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) called off its 12-hour strike on Tuesday after the government referred the controversial National Medical Commission Bill, tabled in the Lok Sabha, to a Standing Committee.

The strike was to have lasted from 6 am to 6 pm and doctors, who were members of the IMA and its associated bodies, were to boycott out-patient departments. “The strike is called off as the Bill has been deferred,” said KK Aggarwal, former president, IMA. “Our next step would be to convince the Committee of the many flaws in the Bill.”

The National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill, 2017, seeks to replace the Medical Council of India (MCI) with a new body. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said the Bill had been referred to the Standing Committee.

(Source: The Hindu)


8. Amid Friction, India to Host CPC Team

Differences over key issues between India and China will not come in the way of the two countries ramping up political contact. India will host a six-member delegation of the powerful central committee of Communist Party of China (CPC) for five days starting Wednesday, official sources told TOI.

The delegation will be headed by Meng Xiangfeng, a close confidant of President Xi Jinping and deputy director of the general office of the CPC central committee.

(Source: Times of India)

9. Opposition Reaches out to BJP Allies to Stall Triple Talaq Bill in RS

The Opposition on Tuesday reached out to the ruling BJP’s allies to back its demand for sending to a House panel the bill that criminalises instant triple talaq, a day before the legislation is expected to be tabled in the Rajya Sabha.

Senior opposition leaders also said plans were afoot to disrupt the proceedings to prevent the government from introducing the bill in the Upper House, where the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance is in a minority. “We can adopt any democratic tactics to stop the bill,” Trinamool Congress’ Derek O’Brien said.

(Source: Hindustan Times)

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