The Statesman – Article 370: Supreme Court refers plea challenging detention of children in Kashmir to Constitution bench

A bench headed by Justice NV Ramana will commence the hearing on the pleas relating to Article 370 from Tuesday.

New Delhi – India, 30 September 2019. The Supreme Court on Monday referred the petition challenging the illegal detention of children in Jammu and Kashmir since 05 August, to the Constitution bench formed to hear the petitions challenging abrogation of Article 370.

The petition was filed by two child activists, Enakshi Ganguly and Professor Shanta Sinha, who had alleged illegal detention of children in the Valley in the wake of abrogation of Article 370.

Based on media reports, the petition highlights that a large number of minors and youths have been picked up by the security forces in many places in the Valley and that the children are facing injuries and deaths due to the actions of the security forces.

The Chief Justice had on September 20 observed that it raises crucial questions pertaining to the detention of children in Jammu and Kashmir.

Besides, the apex court also referred to the Constitution bench a plea filed by Kashmir Times Executive Editor Anuradha Bhasin seeking the removal of communication blockade in Kashmir after the abrogation of Article 370 and free movement of journalists and Press in the Valley.

A bench headed by Justice NV Ramana will commence the hearing on the pleas relating to Article 370 from Tuesday.

The top court had on Saturday constituted a five-judge Constitution bench headed by Justice NV Ramana to hear the clutch of petitions related to Article 370, that gave special status to J-K.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has issued a notice to the Centre on a PIL seeking direction for the government to immediately restore high-speed internet services and fix landline phone services across all hospitals and medical establishments of Jammu and Kashmir.

The top court had on September 16 asked the Centre and the Jammu and Kashmir government to “ensure that normalcy is restored” in the Valley even as it asked the institutions to be mindful of national safety and security while doing so.

The Centre had said that some restrictions on communications and preventive detentions have been made, as per law, at local administration level based on the ground situation with a view to maintaining public law and order.

Jammu and Kashmir was put under virtual curfew on 5 August when the Modi government scrapped the Article 370 and split the state into two union territories.

Article 370: SC refers plea challenging detention of children in Kashmir to Constitution bench – Even after six months, no effort on SGPC’s behalf to save demolished Darshani Deodi

Sikh24 Editors

Chandigarh – Panjab – India, 30 September 2019. Exactly six months ago, an attempt was made to demolish around two centuries old historic Darshani Deodi of Gurdwara Sri Tarn Taran Sahib during the evening hours of March 30.

The Kaar Sewa sect headed by Baba Jagtar Singh had planned this demolition despite protest by the Sikh sangat and without taking permission of the concerned Gurdwara Sahib’s manager.

Although the vigilant Sikhs acted by time and succeeded in saving this historic Darshani Deodi from getting demolished completely, but still it couldn’t be saved from getting demolished partly.

Following this incident, a sharp outrage had erupted among common Sikh masses, the SGPC as well as Baba Jagtar Singh came under fire. However, the SGPC cleverly emerged out of this by presenting an uncirculated resolution against the demolition of this historic Darshani Deodi and by accusing Baba Jagtar Singh of acting without the permission of Gurdwara Sahib’s manager.

On March 31, Baba Jagtar Singh’s men were expelled from Gurdwara Sri Tarn Taran Sahib. Later, the SGPC had also announced that no further Kaar Sewa will be given to Baba Jagtar Singh in any Gurdwara Sahib.

31 March was the same day when SAD (Amritsar) leader Karam Singh Bhoian sat on strike beneath the demolished Darshani Deodi seeking action against Baba Jagtar Singh and the SGPC officials. Initially, Bhoian’s sit in strike drew large mass support, but this mass support gradually declined due to non-cooperative attitude shown by other Sikh outfits.

On 07 Jun, the SAD (Amritsar) president Simranjit Singh Mann directed Karam Singh Bhoian to quit this sit-in-strike while signifying a change in strategy.

On being contacted by Sikh24, Karam Singh Bhoian said that he had launched a peaceful agitation at the behest of party high command and when they asked me to quit, I quitted.

“It is true that we couldn’t force the administration to take action against the SGPC as well as Baba Jagtar Singh because the duo have kept their safe sides very cleverly,” he added while accusing the like-minded organizations of not supporting his struggle.

Amritsar based SAD (Amritsar) leader Pritpal Singh informed that they have approached the Punjab & Haryana High Court seeking criminal indictment of Baba Jagtar Singh and the SGPC officials.

“On the directions of High Court, we have lodged a fresh complaint to the SSP, Tarn Taran two weeks ago and a copy of this complaint has been submitted in the Court,” he added.

He further informed that the SSP has marked an inquiry into this case to the DSP (City), Tarn Taran. “The DSP (City) had promised us to take action within a week, but now it is learnt that he has been transferred,” he added.

What SGPC did on this issue?

The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhik Committee had announced to reconstruct the demolished part of the historic Darshani Deodi in the last of May month.

The SGPC even called upon meetings of its 11 member Heritage Committee but all these meetings were used to get cancelled or deferred before a day or two and the members of SGPC’s heritage committee couldn’t ever chalk out any strategy to revive the traditional look of this historic Darshani Deodi.

Current relations between SGPC and Baba Jagtar Singh

To pacify the Sikh masses, the SGPC had played a high voltage drama against Baba Jagtar Singh by announcing to register an FIR against Baba Jagtar Singh and stopping further allocation of Kaar Sewa in any SGPC run Gurdwara Sahib.

But the SGPC’s drama got exposed with the surfacing of a video of meeting SGPC president Gobind Singh Longowal and Baba Jagtar Singh. In this meeting, Longowal and other SGPC officials were seen convincing Baba Jagtar Singh and promising to support him under all circumstances.

Currently, the Kaar Sewa sect headed by Baba Jagtar Singh is working without any hindrance wherever it was allocated Kaar Sewa by the SGPC. Donation boxes could be serenely observed installed in all such Sikh shrines including Gurdwara Ber Sahib, Sultanpur Lodhi.

What locals say?

Sukhraj Singh, a local Sikh of Tarn Taran, said that the SGPC and Baba Jagtar Singh had demolished this historic Darshani Deodi with mutual understanding. “The SGPC will never take action against Baba Jagtar Singh as the duo have been serving each other’s material interests from a long time and expecting a spiritual decision from the SGPC is like expecting milk from a bull,” he added.

Gurpreet Singh, another local, said that Baba Jagtar Singh is a highly influential personality in Tarn Taran so expecting action against him on administration’s behalf is a totally wrong expectation.

“The rain water kept on pouring in from the upper demolished part of this historic Darshani Deodi during the whole Monsoon season. This will ultimately put an adverse effect on the health of this two century old building but the SGPC still doesn’t seem serious to protect this great sample of Sikh architecture,” he added.

Even after six months, no effort on SGPC’s behalf to save demolished Darshani Deodi

Gent Zuid – Gentbrugse Meersen

Gent Zuid
10 September 2019

Gent Zuid – Tram 4 to Ledebergstraat

Gentbrugse Meersen
14 September 2019

Hot air balloons

From Koningsdonkstraat into Gentbrugse Meersen

Nice trees

Field and bushes

The wild side of Gentbrugge

More Belgian pictures to be published
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

India Today – Kartarpur Sahib and Nankana Sahib should have been on Indian side: Hardeep Puri

Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said both Nankana Sahib and Kartarpur Sahib which are in Pakistan should have been included in India at the time of partition.

New Delhi – India, 01 October 2019. Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Monday said both Nankana Sahib and Kartarpur Sahib which are in Pakistan should have been included in India at the time of Partition like other gurdwaras associated with the life of Sikhism founder Guru Nanak.

Puri, a prominent Sikh face of the BJP, said when the borders were drawn between Indian and Pakistan in 1947, those who were involved in this exercise should have applied their mind and assured that all gurdwaras linked to the life of Guru Nanak Dev be on the Indian side.

“We are celebrating the 550th birth anniversary (of Guru Nanak) and if you look at the gurdwaras associated with Guru Nanak Sahib which captured his life are now in Pakistan, Nankana Sahib and Kartarpur Sahib. I do wish that someone at some stage had applied their mind, all these gurdwaras should have been on this side of the border,” he said while speaking at an event here.

Puri who won the Lok Sabha polls from the Amritsar seat made the remarks on the day when Pakistan said it will invite Manmohan Singh for the inauguration of the Kartarpur corridor, an offer which sources said the former prime minister was unlikely to accept.

Speaking at the launch of a coffee table book on Guru Nanak, Puri said he is making this statement “not to score any point but more out of a regret”.

The Kartarpur Sahib corridor is scheduled to open on November 9, days before the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak. It is being built by the two neighbouring countries in Pakistan’s Kartarpur and connects to Dera Baba Nanak shrine in the Gurdaspur district of Punjab.

The corridor aims at facilitating visa-free movement of Indian pilgrims who will just need a permit to visit Kartarpur Sahib located across the Ravi river, about 4 km from the Dera Baba Nanak shrine.

Maybe Panjab should not have been partitioned at all !
Man in Blue

The Hindu – Assam’s NRC: law schools launch legal aid clinic for excluded people

Those left out are required to file appeals against their exclusion within 120 days of receiving their rejection order from the NRC authority

Special Correspondent

Guwahati – Assam – India, 01 October 2019. Law schools across India on Tuesday launched a collaborative legal aid clinic for people excluded from the updated National Register Citizens (NRC) in Assam.

More than 19 lakh out of a total of 3.3 crore applicants were left out of the Supreme Court-monitored NRC that was published on 31 August. Those who were left out are required to file appeals against their exclusion within 120 days of receiving their rejection order from the NRC authority.

The clinic, named Parichay (Identity) and to be headquartered in Guwahati, is envisaged to function as a “clearing house of litigation and research assistance for lawyers filing appeals against exclusion from the NRC”.

The institutes include Assam’s National Law University and Judicial Academy (NLUJA), the Kolkata-based West Bengal National University of Juridical Science, Hyderabad’s National Academy of Legal Studies and Research (NALSAR), Delhi’s National Law University and National Law University of Odisha.

Other law schools are also in the process of formalising their collaboration with Parichay, a statement issued by the collaborative said.

“Parichay will assist lawyers in drafting appeals, conduct research on pertinent questions of the law, assist in training lawyers and paralegals, and generate documentation on the functioning of Foreigners’ Tribunals.

Law students will work with lawyers to ensure that they are able to file effective appeals before the Foreigners’ Tribunals. Parichay will also collaborate with civil society to provide legal aid to communities,” the statement said.

‘Unprecedented initiative’

NLUJA Vice-Chancellor J S Patil termed Parichay as an unprecedented collaboration among law schools in the country. “We believe that this is necessary to ensure that no one is deprived of their right to legal representation,” he said.

His NALSAR counterpart Faizan Mustafa said: “After the NRC, absence of effective legal aid would mean that many persons would be rendered Stateless without due process. An innovative collaboration like Parichay is essential to prevent such a humanitarian crisis.”

The founding team of the clinic includes National Law University’s assistant professor Anup Surendranath, Jindal Global Law School’s assistant professor M Mohsin Alam Bhat and Kolkata-based lawyer and research Darshana Mitra.

Parichay will work with teams of student volunteers across the country. Students will be selected through a selection process to constitute a core team and a pool of volunteers for research and drafting. The core team will work with the programme director to coordinate Parichay’s activities between lawyers and student volunteers, the statement said.

Each collaborating university has appointed a faculty adviser who will coordinate on behalf of the university with Parichay.

“Parichay is an extension of the commitment of the National University of Juridical Sciences to the provision of legal aid, to fulfil the constitutional mandate under Article 39A of the Constitution of India.

While the Assam government has assured that legal aid will be provided to all, an exercise of this scale requires the participation of law schools and civil society,” said N.K. Chakrabarti, Vice-Chancellor of National University of Juridical Sciences.