QBullet: Thousands Flee Post LoC Firing; Arson at Manipur Varsity

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Buildings ablaze in Manipur University. (Photo Courtesy: <a href="https://www.facebook.com/TaKabokLei/photos/a.855077054568852.1073741828.500646996678528/1120232374719984/?type=3&amp;theater">Facebook</a>)

1. LoC Shelling Forces Thousands to Flee; India-Pak Tensions Heat up

Pakistan's security forces attacked civilian areas along the Line of Control (LoC) with heavy mortar shelling until late on Tuesday, forcing around 2,500 villagers to move to relief camps established by the district administration.

Sources said that the firing and shelling were so heavy in some border villages in Rajouri and Poonch, that residents could not be evacuated. There have been six ceasefire violations by Pakistan over the last 36 hours.

Eyewitnesses living across the LoC have provided The Indian Express with graphic accounts of last week’s Indian Army’s strikes on jihadists’ staging posts, describing how bodies of those killed in clashes before dawn on 29 September were loaded onto trucks for secret burials. The witnesses also described brief but intense fire engagements that destroyed makeshift buildings that housed jihadists.

Their accounts corroborate India’s claims that it carried out strikes against terror launch pads – a claim Pakistan has denied, saying instead, that its military’s forward positions were targeted with small-arms and mortar fire.

(Source: The Times of India and The Indian Exress)

Also Read: The Quint’s Exclusive Coverage on Current Situation in Kashmir

If Pakistan Wants Proof of Surgical Strikes, India Should Oblige

Warlike Situation Could Prevail in Kashmir for Several Months

2. Manipur Varsity Set Ablaze; VC Resigns, Classes Stalled

Manipur University suspended all classes indefinitely from Tuesday after an agitation by students over reservation in admission turned violent late last night.

After announcing closure of the classes, the Vice-Chancellor In-Charge, M Dhaneshwar, resigned on Tuesday. The university has been without a full-time vice-chancellor after HNK Sharma retired on 16 August this year.

The students of the university have been agitating over delay in admission to first year post-graduate courses, caused by indecision on part of the university. The academic session was supposed to commence in July. When the academic council met on Monday, it again could not decide on the reservation issue.

This apparently triggered violence on the campus around 10:30 last night. Suspected student protesters set the recreation hall, a computer shop and a restaurant ablaze and destroyed several rooms of professors, sources said.

Dhaneshwar was scheduled to visit Delhi on Tuesday to meet officials of the human resource ministry and UGC. Instead, he cancelled the visit and announced his resignation.

(Source: The Telegraph)

3. Dadri Lynching: Accused Dies, Villagers Claim He Was Beaten up in Prison

Ravin Sisodia, 21, jailed for allegedly beating Mohammad Akhlaq to death in Dadri’s Bisara village in September last year, died in a Delhi hospital on Tuesday. Villagers alleged that Ravin, along with three other accused in the case, was beaten up in jail. Following this, Ravin was hospitalised.

Around 6:30 pm to 7 pm today, we came to know about the death. A detailed report of Ravin’s medical history, test results as well as the postmortem report from LNJP Hospital, is awaited. Jail authorities have told us that he was suffering from a lung infection. But I have asked for a detailed medical report.
NP Singh, Gautam Budh Nagar District Magistrate

4. Echoing Govt's Growth Roadmap, RBI Cuts Repo Rate by 25 Basis Points

Amid easing food inflation and projections of a global slowdown, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) cut its key policy rate – the repo rate – by 25 basis points to 6.25 percent, fuelling hopes of cheaper loans for home buyers and corporates. This takes the rate to its lowest since January 2011.

The unanimous decision to reduce rates was taken by the new six-member Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) under a framework agreement signed with the government, marking a decisive shift in the approach to interest-rate setting in India. Earlier, the RBI governor was technically the sole arbiter of the monetary policy.

(Source: The Indian Express)

Also Read: Patel’s Big Day Out Signals Abrupt Shift From Rajan’s Era

5. Jharkhand: At Centre of Mining Site Violence, There Is an Ex-Minister and His MLA Wife

It’s an agitation that has been going on for 12 years now over land acquisition and related issues arising out of a National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) project in Barkagaon in Hazaribagh, Jharkhand. In recent years, the protests have often turned violent. And whenever clashes have broken out between protesters and police, the spotlight has invariably fallen on one political couple.

Yogendra Saw, former Congress Minister, was arrested on Tuesday on charges of instigating violence at Dandi Kala village three days earlier, when four protesters were killed and and two senior officials severely injured – their colleagues say they were nearly lynched. Police insisted Saw was behind the violence, while conceding he was not on the spot.

Former Congress Minister Yogendra Saw address the villagers in Barkagaon in Hazaribagh. (Photo Courtesy: <a href="https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2213897272169359&amp;set=pb.100006473246097.-2207520000.1475624735.&amp;type=3&amp;theater">Facebook</a>)
Former Congress Minister Yogendra Saw address the villagers in Barkagaon in Hazaribagh. (Photo Courtesy: Facebook)

On the spot was Saw’s wife Nirmala Devi, sitting MLA from Barkagaon constituency once represented by Saw. The agitation is against a coal mining project in Pakri-Barwadih, one of the three captive coal blocks awarded to the NTPC for a power plant. Long before the couple took up the cause, others had been raising it for years. And the older protesters are not convinced about the commitment of the couple.

(Source: The Indian Express)

Also Read: In Photos: India’s Uranium Mines Spell Doom for Adivasi Workers

Child Deaths in Illegal Mica Mines Hidden to Keep Industry Alive

6. While CM Jayalalithaa in Hospital, Her Adviser Is in Tamil Nadu Hot Seat

It isn’t Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa alone who is the centre of attention at the city’s Apollo Hospital. Somewhere on the second floor, where the ailing chief minister is being treated by a team of top doctors, another lady holds court these days with top officials queuing up for instructions.

Retired IAS officer, Sheela Balakrishnan, 62, is credited with running the state administration while the chief minister is battling her illness.

CM Jayalalithaa with close aide Sheela Balakrishnan (Photo Courtesy: Twitter/<a href="https://twitter.com/gopalanchennai">@<b>gopalanchennai</b></a>)
CM Jayalalithaa with close aide Sheela Balakrishnan (Photo Courtesy: Twitter/@gopalanchennai)
Even ministers are taking instructions from her. Jayalalithaa has implicit trust in Sheela Balakrishnan, both for her abilities and attitude, which is why she has become the most important person in the state today. Nothing moves without her consent.
Top Official told The Hindustan Times

7. SC Asks Jung, Kejriwal Govt to Unite and Fight Against Chikungunya

Sit down, talk and fight together the Capital’s worst chikungunya outbreak. That’s the message from the Supreme Court on Tuesday to Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung and the Aam Aadmi Party government, locked in a running feud over who controls Delhi’s administration.

The remarks came as Delhi recorded its highest ever –1,598 chikungunya cases in the week ending 1 October, though hospital data show new infections are down.

There is no question of playing any blame game. You have the responsibility to look after the people of Delhi. You may be great, but you have to do something to maintain that stature. No digging of the past should happen.
Court

8. Jayant Chaudhary to Be CM Face of JD(U)-RLD Alliance for UP Elections

In what is being seen as a significant realignment of political forces ahead of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) and Ajit Singh’s Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) held their first joint rally on Tuesday and agreed to project Jayant Chaudhary, former Lok Sabha MP from Mathura and Ajit Singh’s son, as the combine’s chief ministerial face for the polls scheduled early next year.

Nitish Kumar, Sharad Yadav and Ajit Singh at a rally in Baghpat on Tuesday. (File Photo: PTI)
Nitish Kumar, Sharad Yadav and Ajit Singh at a rally in Baghpat on Tuesday. (File Photo: PTI)

Addressing the rally in Badaut town of Baghpat district, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar took on the BJP and said the NDA government at the Centre is “doing nothing” for a state that has “given 72 MPs to the party” in the Lok Sabha.

Baghpat, in western UP, is seen as an RLD stronghold.

(Source: The Indian Express)

Also Read: Eye to the Future: Modi Snubs RSS to Reap Rewards in UP Elections

Who is Jignesh Mevani and Can He Impact the UP Election Result?

Amit Shah Calls For Uprooting of SP, BSP from Uttar Pradesh

9. Maharashtra CM Announces Rs 49,248 Cr Development Plan for Marathwada

The Devendra Fadnavis government on Tuesday announced a package of Rs49,248 crore for eight districts of Marathwada region in a special cabinet meet in Aurangabad, after a gap of eight years. The package comes in the backdrop of state-wide protests by the Maratha community, which is dominant in the region, and the ensuing corporation and district council elections due in the next six months.

Although the package for the drought-hit region covers almost all areas, including irrigation, agriculture, roads, railways, sports, housing and forest development; most of the projects that were announced were already cleared by the cabinet along with a financial allocation earlier. Some of the schemes were announced by the Centre with financial allocations.

(Source: The Hindustan Times)

Also Read: Drought-Hit Marathwada Now Faces Deluge, Normal Life Affected

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