Demonstration near European Parliament
One Waremme Singhani, One unknown lady and One Man in Blue
Ajay Banerjee, Tribune News Service
New Delhi, April 10. Rumblings within the Punjab Congress have reached a crescendo with the group opposed to the state party chief deciding to approach Sonia Gandhi with a one-point agenda: replace Amarinder Singh.
Sources said Amarinder’s arch rival in the party, Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, is cobbling together a small group that will comprise former state party presidents. Amarinder’s opponents accuse him of having led the party to a second consecutive defeat in the state assembly elections. His supporters, however, want him to stay on till the next Lok Sabha elections due in 2014.
A small group of party detractors comprising Mohinder Singh Kaypee, Jagmeet Brar and Pratap Bajwa met at Kaypee’s residence on Monday.
This morning, Bhattal, who was on her way back from Jaipur, met two former PPCC chiefs, Varinder Katraia and Shamsher Dullo. Sources said the group wanted to contact RL Bhatia and Mohinder Singh Gill besides HS Hanspal to bring all former PPCC chiefs on board. Bhattal is also a former party chief.
The problem with the anti-Amarinder group is that they cannot agree to his successor. The group, sources said, would like to tell party chief Sonia Gandhi that it would accept the high command’s word on the new appointee once Amarinder is removed.
On the other hand, the AK Antony-led three-member committee, set up by the party high command, is yet to decide on expanding the scope of meetings with Punjab leaders. However, four state party leaders — Avtar Singh Brar, Surinder Singla, Nasib Singh Gill and Varinder Kataria — called on Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit today. They reportedly pressed for a change at the top in the Punjab party unit.
Apart from Antony and Dikshit, Union Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde is the third member of the committee that is tasked with analyzing the fault-lines in Punjab, Uttarakhand, UP and Goa party units. A report of the committee is expected this month-end.
Mohit Khanna, Tribune News Service
Ludhiana, April 10. The accused in the murder case of DSP Balraj Singh Gill and Monika Kapila were also involved in several other cases of robbery, molestation and even rape. And none of their over two dozen victims came forward and reported the matter to the police.
This was revealed during police interrogation by accused Harwinder (23), Umesh (23), Pritpal (21) and Hasanjit (26), who brutally killed the DSP and Monika.
The police has traced a girl, who was robbed and molested by the accused when she visited the Golf Link area along with her boyfriend.
Sources said the police was trying to convince the girl to turn a witness against the accused. “It seems difficult to convince the victim as she visited the area along with a boy without telling her parents. She is not willing to put herself in an embarrassing situation,” said an officer of the investigating team.
Rajnish Sharma, Asian Age Correspondent
New Delhi, 11 April 2012. In what might give Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi a shot in the arm as he heads into Assembly polls later this year, the senior BJP leader has been given a clean chit by the Special Investigation Team in the Gulberg Society massacre case. Former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri was among 69 people killed there after commumal riots erupted in Gujarat after the horrific Godhra train carnage.
Mr Modi’s clean chit was revealed by a trial court in Ahmedabad on Tuesday, which said the Supreme Court-appointed SIT had said “it did not find any prosecutable evidence against Narendra Modi and 61 others” in the massacre.
Putting a spanner in the works for Mr Modi and others, however, are independent findings by amicus curiae Raju Ramachandran on the Gulberg killings. Sources claimed his report contradicts the SIT’s findings and say there is enough evidence to prosecute Mr Modi. It is believed Mr Ramachandran’s findings will be part of the annexures to the SIT report.
The SIT was headed by former CBI chief R.K. Raghavan and probed the Gulberg Society riots of 2002. It is believed to have said its findings should be treated as a “closure report”. Speaking to television channels, Mr Raghvan said motives should not be attributed to the SIT in a clean chit to Mr Modi.
While the BJP was quick to welcome the SIT findings as “a big relief”, it’s a setback for Mr Jafri’s widow, Zakia Jafri, who had been battling to bring those allegedly behind the Gulberg Society massacre to justice. Ehsan Jafri and his family were among the residents of this apartment complex.
The SIT’s findings will also be a setback for Gujarat IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt, who had alleged he had attended two law and order meetings where the CM had ordered the police to go slow on rioters. The SIT said it found no evidence to back up the IPS officer’s claims.
It was former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri’s widow Zakia Jafri who had moved the Supreme Court seeking an independent investigation into the 2002 Gulberg riots. She had alleged inaction on the part of Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi in the case, following which the SIT was constituted in 2008.
On 28 February I went to Antwerp to attend the wedding of Jatinder Singh & Reyhan Kaur
As I was early I had time to take pictures of trams, the river and the castle
Wolstraat, De Lijn Tram 11 to Deurne
Trams go to near Grote Markt and then turn back to Deurne
Wolstraat, tracks of De Lijn Tram 10 & 11
Belgium is famous for its cobblestones
Here the trams coming from Antwerpen Central Station turn right to start their return journey to Deurne
De Lijn Tram 10 with trailer on its way to Deurne
Grote Markt with houses dating back to the late Middle Ages
To see more Belgium (mostly Limburg) pictures :
To see more Belgium and Netherlands public transport pictures :
More Belgium pictures to follow
Man in Blue
The Armed Forces (Jammu and Kashmir) Special Powers Act
Changes under CCS consideration n J&K interlocutors report to be out soon
Dinesh Manhotra, Tribune News Service
Jammu, April 10. Union Home Minister P Chidambaram today said his ministry had proposed three amendments to the Armed Forces Special Power Act (AFSPA) and those were under the consideration of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS). Chidambaram was on a day-long visit to the state to review its security situation.
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah has been pressing for partial revocation of the AFSPA and reducing the footprint of security forces in the state in a phased manner.
“The Ministry of Home Affairs has proposed three amendments in AFSPA. They are under the consideration of the CCS,” he told reporters here after a meeting with J&K Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) leaders.
Regarding the report submitted by the three interlocutors appointed by the Centre, Chidambaram said their report would be made public only after consideration of the same by the CCS. “Once the decision on these amendments is taken, we will make the report public,” the Home Minister said.
The three interlocutors on Jammu and Kashmir — noted journalist Daleep Padgaonkar, noted academician Radha Kumar and former Information Commissioner MM Ansari — had submitted their report to Chidambaram in New Delhi on October 12, 2011, laying down a roadmap for the government to address all issues pertaining to the state.
Omar has repeatedly pitched for making the report public, holding a debate on it and thereafter implementing the recommendations. Political parties in the state have also been demanding that the report be made public.
Earlier, on arrival from New Delhi in the morning, Chidambaram visited the cave shrine of Mata Vaishno Devi and paid obeisance at the sanctum sanctorum.
The Home Minister also met senior Congress leaders of the state and discussed various issues pertaining to the functioning of the coalition government.
Although PCC chief Saif-ud-Din Soz denied any discussion on AFSPA in the meeting with Chidambaram, Congress’ Jammu-Poonch Lok Sabha member Madan Lal Sharma said Congress leaders had expressed their reservation against withdrawal of AFSPA from the state at this juncture. “I told the Union Minister that time is not ripe for revocation of AFPSA from the state,” Sharma said.
Soz said the functioning of the government was discussed in the meeting. “We told the Home Minister that the Congress has been providing every possible help to the state government to restore lasting peace in the state and ensure smooth functioning of the coalition,” he said and disclosed that Congress leaders discussed some issues regarding the Jammu region.
A delegation of the All Parties Sikh Coordination Committee Kashmir also met Chidambaram and highlighted the hardship being faced by Sikhs in the state.
AFSPA allows armed forces to :
Fire upon or otherwise use force, even to the causing of death, against any person who is acting in contravention of any law.
To arrest without a warrant and with the use of necessary force anyone who has committed certain offences or is suspected of having done so
To enter and search any premise in order to make such arrests.
The act also bestows legal immunity to the officials, which means that they can not be sued or prosecuted in j&K since 1990
First introduced in the states of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Tripura, the Act was later extended to Jammu and Kashmir as the The Armed Forces (Jammu and Kashmir) Special Powers Act, 1990 in July 1990.
Karachi, 11 April 2012. Traders of Karachi, while rejecting the government’s decision to shut down markets at 8 pm, have said that it seems the government wants businesses to wind up, DawnNews reported.
Karachi Tajir Ittehad President Atiq Mir said that in the past the government’s experiment of shutting down markets early had failed and the outcome of this decision would not be constructive.
According to him the government was creating such issues to distract the masses from other issues such as inflation.
Chairman of Karachi electronics dealers Idrees Memon has said that the decision to close down markets early is tantamount to destroying businesses and that the government is punishing the businessmen for its own incompetence.
He added that further course of action against the decision would be announced soon.
Head of Wholesale chemist council of Karachi Ghulam Noorani has said that dusk takes place around eight pm in the summers, issues of extortionism, law and order and loadshedding are being compounded by the decision taken by the government which is not possible to implement.