The News – CCTV Video of Amir Masih lends credence to torture claims

Lahore – Panjab – Pakistan, 08 September 2019. A CCTV footage has lent credence to claims that Amir Masih was subjected to torture by the Lahore police officials.

According to the family of the deceased, Masih, a gardener by profession, had appeared before North Cantt police last week to prove his innocence against the charges of theft levelled against him by his employer, but the police detained him and subjected him to severe torture which claimed his life.

Police had reportedly shifted him to a private hospital four days later for multiple injuries inflicted on him. The video purports to show policeman and Amir Masih in front of the hospital where he was brought on a motorcycle.

The footage shows policemen in plainclothes kicking the victim as he falls to the ground before being dragged into the medical facility. According to the video timestamp, an hour later the victim is seen on wheel-chair outside the hospital entrance and being taken away in a car.

The postmortem report also confirmed torture on Amir’s hands, back and arms. His ribs were also broken, the report stated. On 04 September, the police registered a case against six police officials over the death of a suspect in police custody.

Incharge Investigation Nasir Baig, T/ASI Zeeshan and four constables were nominated in the FIR registered against them under sections 302, 342 and 34 PPC.

Masih is a common Christian surname in India and Pakistan
Man in Blue – Kashmiri student beaten, forced to wear women’s clothes in Rajasthan

Shruti Jain – The Wire

Jaipur – Rajasthan – India, 07 September 2019. A video from Rajasthan’s Alwar showing a student from Kashmir tied to a pole after having been made to wear women’s clothes, has been doing the rounds on social media.

The 23-year-old boy in the video, Mir Faiz, is originally from Kashmir’s Baramullah and is currently in his final year of engineering studies at the School of Aeronautics in Neemrana.

Faiz’s brother, Faizal, who works at Tata Consultancy Services in New Delhi and was informed about the incident on Wednesday night, said the miscreants were unknown to Faiz.

“On Wednesday evening [04 September], Faiz had gone out to withdraw some cash from the ATM where some men abducted him outside his college campus. They took him to an isolated place and took off his clothes.

They made him wear women’s clothes and compelled him to walk into the market, saying that they would kill him otherwise. He walked a little and then to save himself, entered an ATM booth but soon after, about 20 unknown men pulled him out and thrashed him in the open market,” Faizal told The Wire.

“My brother was severely injured but he was not medically examined until today [05 September 5]. He told me he could not even hear with his left ear when the police were questioning him. The police investigated his flat twice and even confiscated his mobile phone. We are not able to understand why we are being treated as culprits here.

Faizal reached Alwar on Wednesday night itself.

“The police let him go at around midnight and asked him to go back Thursday for ‘interrogation’. He did. It has been a whole day, they haven’t let me meet him once today,” he added. At the time of publishing the report, Faiz had been released after interrogation.

However, the police said that a FIR into the matter was registered late on Wednesday night itself. “The boy had complained that about 20 unknown men had beaten him in the market. An FIR is being registered under sections 143 (unlawful assembly), 323 (voluntary causing hurt), 341 (wrongful restraint), 342 (wrongful confinement), 505 (public mischief) and 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code,” Laxman Singh, sub-inspector at the Neemrana police station told The Wire.

Faizal said the college administration has not been supportive either. “The director told us that he cannot understand why Faiz was dressed as a woman. We are completely on our own here,” said Faizal.

Faizal has further claimed that the police accessed his Facebook account, emails and other social media engagements to verify whether he’s an ‘anti-national’ or not. “It’s beyond our understanding as to why the police would verify the victim in the first place.

This is such a bad situation. We will not let Faiz continue his studies here. There is a risk of his life here and we cannot leave him on his own,” said Faizal.

The superintendent of police in the district has denied that the student’s Kashmiri identity was the trigger for the attack and seemed to allege that the women’s clothes the men had forced on him were to blame.

Speaking to The Wire, the Bhiwadi SP, Amandeep Singh Kapoor, said, “It wasn’t an identity-based crime. The locals didn’t know he is a Kashmiri. Since he was dressed as a woman, it caught their attention.”

Kashmiri Student Beaten, Forced to Wear Women’s Clothes in Rajasthan

Gentbrugge – Gentbrugse Meersen

Gentbrugse Meersen
20 August 2019

Kaardebol – Teasel

Boerenwormkruid – Tansy
Schermbloem – Umbelliferae

The path turns right – the path turns left

A path that goes up !

In woodland

Leaving the concrete path

More Belgian pictures to be published
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

Hindustan Times – Row over Sarna, DSGMC nagar kirtans: PSGPC gives nod to Sarna-led nagar kirtan in Pakistan, ‘ignores’ DSGMC

Anil Sharma

New Delhi – India, 08 September 2019. The Pakistan government has given permission to former president of Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Manage Committee (DSGMC), Paramjit Singh Sarna, to hold nagar kirtan (Sikh religious procession) from Wagah border to Nankana Sahib, birth place of Guru Nanak, in Pakistan.

The procession will be accorded warm welcome, said Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (PSGPC) chief Satwant Singh in a video posted on his Facebook page on Saturday.

Sarna has planned the procession from Gurdwara Nanak Piao in New Delhi to Nankana Sahib in Pakistan on October 28. Similarly, DSGMC’s president and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA from Rajouri Garden, Manjinder Singh Sirsa, has also planned a separate nagar kirtan from Gurdwara Bangla Sahib in New Delhi to Nankana Sahib on 13 October.

This has been the point of contention for the two separate groups of the Sikh community in the national capital.

“Pakistan government had already given permission to Sarna for holding the procession. The procession will reach Nankana Sahib through Wagah border on October 31.

A meeting of PSGPC and Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) was held with the government of Punjab on August 27. It was decided in the meeting that PSGPC, Sikh sangat and Pakistan government will welcome the procession. Pakistan government will also provide all kind of facility to the sangat of the procession,” said the PSGPC chief.

He also appealed in the video to the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), jathedars of five Takhts (five temporal seats of Sikhs), and DSGMC to join the Sarna-led procession.

Satwant Singh, however, did not mention a word about the procession being organised by the DSGMC though it is scheduled on 13 October, much earlier than the procession led by Sarna.

On Saturday, Sarna was in Amritsar. He showed a copy of permission from Pakistan government and said, “Only we have permission from Pakistan government to hold the procession while Sirsa has been fooling the Sikh sangat.

I will complain to the jathedar of Akal Takht, Giani Harpreet Singh, for taking action against Sirsa, who has not received any nod from Pakistan government regarding his procession.”

Earlier, during the SGPC’s nagar kirtan, which was taken out from Nankana Sahib in Pakistan on August 31, a confusion had erupted on 30 August in the neighbouring country over the procession’s permission when ETPB feigned ignorance about Sikh institutions, SGPC and DSGPC, saying they had no official communication about the procession.

However, on 31 August, the Pakistan government gave permission for the procession but not before heated arguments ensued between officials of the ETPB and heads of the SGPC and DSGMC.

Taking to HT, Sirsa said, “Sarna is playing into the hands of Pakistan just to defame Indian government. He has not followed the proper procedure and had not sought permission from Indian government. We are the one following the rules and regulations. We have applied through our government and we are expected to get the permission within next few days.”

“When Sarna was president of DSGMC, it had applied to Union home ministry for taking out a similar procession in 2005. We have followed the same rules. When we had taken out the procession from Nankana Sahib on August 31, the same procedure was followed,” he added.

He said, “Sarna has not taken permission from Indian government and he might face obstacle in taking out the procession to Pakistan. And it may give Sarna a chance to defame Indian government.”

Dawn – Pakistan rejects India’s efforts to portray ‘normalcy’ in occupied Kashmir

Pakistan “categorically rejected” on Sunday Indian government’s attempts to “portray normalcy in India-occupied Jammu and Kashmir”.

Naveed Siddiqui

Islamabad Capital Territory – Pakistan, 08 September 2019. A press release issued by the Foreign Office today said that despite the Indian government’s claims, occupied Kashmir was still under a lockdown while Kashmiri leaders remained under house arrest.

“Indian-occupied Jammu and Kashmir continues to be the largest prison in the world with the heaviest deployment of Indian occupation forces since the coercive, unilateral and illegal Indian actions of August 5, 2019 aimed at altering the internationally recognised disputed status of IOJ&K and changing its demographic structure to preempt the results of a UN plebiscite,” the press release read.

The Foreign Office also termed Indian reports that portrayed two farmers, who had inadvertently crossed the border in August, as terrorists as a “farcical attempt”.

“This was despite the fact that the incident was discussed during the weekly military hotline contact between both sides on August 27, 2019 when Indian authorities acknowledged that they were inadvertent crossers and informed Pakistan that routine formalities are taking place after which they will be returned.”

On August 21, two farmers in Azad Jammu and Kashmir, identified as Muhammad Nazeem, 21, and 30-year-old Khalil Ahmed, had unintentionally crossed the Line of Control near Hajipir while they were out for cutting grass.

Last month, Indian External Affairs Ministry spokesman Raveesh Kumar had claimed that Pakistan was trying to create “an alarmist situation” after Indian media, citing unidentified Indian intelligence sources, said that Pakistan-trained commandos have allegedly entered Indian waters to attack port facilities in western Gujarat state.

Pakistan Army spokesperson Major General Asif Ghafoor had rubbished the claims. Yesterday, the military’s media wing had also issued a press release on the matter and said that the Indian media’s reports were “yet another attempt to fabricate facts”.

The Foreign Office press release issued today highlighted that Islamabad had “sensitised the international community” about India’s efforts to raise a false flag operation to divert attention from the situation in occupied Kashmir and blame Pakistan for “[India’s] indefensible actions”.

The statement also denounced “a false and fabricated story”, where Indian authorities had “blamed deaths of some Kashmiris in [the occupied territory] on ‘Pakistani militants'”. The statement referred to a briefing by Indian army officials that was held on 04 September.

Kashmir issue is a dispute left from history

A Chinese delegation led by Foreign Minister Wang Yi, which came to Pakistan on a two-day visit, said that Beijing “opposes any unilateral actions that [would] complicate the situation” in occupied Jammu and Kashmir, a press statement said on Sunday.

A joint press release issued by foreign ministries of Pakistan and China, said that the former briefed the Chinese delegation on the situation in India-occupied Kashmir, that has been under a strict lockdown for the past month, “including [Islamabad’s] concerns, position, and urgent humanitarian issues”.

The Chinese side assured Pakistan that it was paying “close attention” to the situation developing in the occupied territory, the press release said. Chinese delegation further said that the “Kashmir issue is a dispute left from history” and must be solved according to the United Nations resolutions.