Brussel/Bruxelles – Mont des Arts/Kunstberg – Koningsstraat/Rue Royal

Mont des Arts/Kunstberg
25 October 2019


Tram 92 and 93

Tram 92 and 93

Tram 92 and 93

Tram 92 and 93

Tram 92 and 93

Tram 92 Schaarbeek – Fort Jaco vv
Tram 93 Stadion – Legrand vv

More Belgian pictures to be published
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

The Deccan Herald -‘Pakistan has ulterior motive in opening Kartarpur corridor’

Chandigarh – Panjab – India, 05 November 2019. Pakistan’s sudden decision to accept the 70-year-old demand to open Kartarpur Corridor is aimed at driving a wedge in the Sikh community by exploiting religious sentiments, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said on Monday.

He stressed that Pakistan’s move “indicated an ulterior motive” and Punjab is on heightened alert to check any nefarious design of the neighbouring country.

“The Sikh community had been asking for opening of the passage to the sacred Kartarpur shrine for the past 70 years, but Pakistan’s sudden decision to accept the demand indicated an ulterior motive, aimed at driving a wedge in the Sikh community by exploiting their religious sentiments,” the chief minister told reporters.

“While we do not expect Pakistan to dare to do any mischief through the Corridor, it is important that, as a border state, Punjab remains on alert,” said the chief minister adding that the state was keeping close tabs on the situation and was maintaining heightened alert.

Singh also lashed out at Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC), alleging it was “playing into the hands of the Badals” and had refused to support his government’s programmes on the historic 550th Prakash Purb celebrations.

“Such major events had always, traditionally, been celebrated under the aegis of the state government, but the SGPC, at the behest of the Akalis, had refused to support the government’s programmes this time,” said the chief minister.

He said the Akalis have been “rejected” by the Sikh community in every election in the last three years, adding that Harsimrat Badal had barely managed to scrape through in the recent Parliamentary elections.

“The people had seen through their gimmicks and frustrated attempts to exploit religion for petty political gains,” he said.

“It was unfortunate that the Akalis, under Sukhbir Badal and his wife and union minister Harsimrat Badal, were trying to divide the Sikh community while celebrating the biggest unifier the world had seen in Guru Nanak, who worked for inter-faith harmony and dialogue,” he said.

His government had reached out in all possible ways to the SGPC to facilitate joint celebrations, but the religious body was clearly working on the Akali agenda in the matter, the chief minister alleged.

Reacting to SGPC charges of inadequate efforts by the state government to ensure befitting celebrations on the occasion, the chief minister said all preparations have ben made to make it a lifetime experience for the pilgrims.

Earlier, Punjab Vidhan Sabha Speaker Rana K P Singh administered oath to the three newly elected legislators Raminder Singh Awla (Jalalabad), Balwinder Singh Dhaliwal (Phagwara) and Indu Bala (Mukerian), who had won in the recent by-elections.

The Print – Modi government is clueless about Indian economy, lacks talent to fix it, says Shekhar Gupta

At ThePrint’s Democracy Wall in Sonipat, Editor-in-Chief Shekhar Gupta spoke on a wide range of topics, free speech, Pakistan & Delhi’s notorious smog.

Revathi Krishnan

Sonipat – Haryana – India, 4 November 2019. The Narendra Modi government is currently clueless about the economy and needs help, as it “lacks talent in economic management”, ThePrint’s Editor-in-Chief Shekhar Gupta said Monday.

Speaking at ThePrint’s free speech campus initiative Democracy Wall, organised at the O P Jindal Global University in Sonipat, Haryana, Gupta said the government lost all its qualified economists as it is “talent averse”, attributing this talent deficit to the likes of BJP leaders who disregarded Nobel laureate Abhijit Banerjee’s scholarship.

But he also said that just because someone has won a Nobel Prize that does not mean one has to agree on everything. “I don’t agree with Abhijit Banerjee on many things,” he said.

On free speech

The audience at the event mainly comprised law and journalism students, who had several questions for Gupta.

Asked about a quality that good leaders should have, Gupta quipped: “I am no Kautilya who can think of an idea for a Chandragupta.”

A student asked Gupta to explain where free speech ends and hate speech begins. He replied it’s extremely easy to distinguish the two, and characterised hate speech as incitement to violence and hatred against someone.

Gupta also said there is a huge difference between hate speech and criticism, saying: “I have never blocked, reported or muted anyone.”

He further said that values like free speech, democracy and equality come under threat when society starts taking them for granted. “There is a constant need for reminders, the Emergency was one such reminder,” he added.

Pakistan is no threat to India

Speaking about Pakistan and its dominance as an issue in Indian politics, Gupta explained that the issue is not with foreign policy, but India’s domestic policy.

He said: “In today’s world, to think you will completely black out a country, that too a nuclear weapon state and a neighbour, is unsustainable.”

Gupta also explained that people are bored of Pakistan as it is no threat to India, and that it is a cheque that has been encashed, which is why in the recent Haryana and Maharashtra elections, issues like Pakistan and Article 370 did not have any resonance.

People are emotional but not stupid,” he added.

On Delhi’s notorious smog, Gupta said it cannot be reduced by only asking Haryana and Punjab to stop stubble burning, but by sitting down and talking to Pakistan, as the air moves from west to east.

Talking about the world order and India’s place in it, Gupta explained that for India to have a place on top, it needs to work on its strengths.

He listed three main strengths, India’s social composition and diversity, the talent of its population, and its democratic system and institutions. Gupta stressed on the need to develop and focus on these strengths to become a key player in the world.

Modi govt is clueless about Indian economy, lacks talent to fix it, says Shekhar Gupta

The Statesman – J-K administration to move detained leaders as winters set in

Centaur Hotel, owned by the Indian Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC), has submitted a bill of Rs 2.65 crore to the home department for 90 days of boarding and lodging of the detained leaders.

New Delhi – India, 04 November 2019. With the advent of winter in the valley and no respite from communication and movement lockdown, the Jammu and Kashmir administration is looking for an accommodation to shift 34 political detainees from Centaur Hotel in Srinagar as it lacks proper heating arrangements, officials said.

The winter chill has already started taking a toll on the health of the detainees National Conference, PDP and People’s Conference leaders, prominent social activists and the security personnel guarding them.

They have been lodged at the hotel on the banks of Dal Lake since 05 August when the central government announced its decision to revoke Jammu and Kashmir’s special status under Article 370 of the Constitution and split the state into two Union territories.

According to the officials privy to the development, Centaur Hotel, owned by the Indian Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC), has submitted a bill of Rs 2.65 crore to the home department for 90 days of boarding and lodging of the detained leaders.

The administration has, however, rejected the claims of Centaur Hotel and argued that the facility was converted into a subsidiary jail on August 5 and therefore, government rates would be paid.

The rates sanctioned by the administration would be around Rs 800 per day as against Rs 5,000 charged by the hotel, the officials said. During the winter, temperature in Srinagar dips below the freezing point.

The seat of administration in the newly created Union territory has moved from Srinagar to Jammu for the winter months. The officials said some measures would be taken soon for shifting the detainees to different locations.

The MLA hostel on Residency Road in the heart of the city could have been an alternative accommodation, but it is now occupied by former MLAs hailing from Jammu and newly elected councillors.

Unwilling to dislodge the former MLAs and councillors, the administration has started looking for a state-run or private hotel for shifting the detainees, they said. They said talks are on with a private hotel in the high-security cantonment area, where some detainees, including Sajjad Lone of People’s Conference (PC), Ali Mohammad Sagar of National Conference (NC), Naem Akhtar of the PDP and former IAS officer Shah Faesal, could be accommodated.

J-K administration to move detained leaders as winters set in – India launches Guru Nanak Chair at Birmingham University

Sikh24 Editors

Birmingham – West Midlands – UK. 03 November 2019. On the eve of the 550th birthday of Sri Guru Nanak Sahib, a new chair commemorating to Guru Nanak Sahib is being launched at the University of Birmingham by the Indian government.

Hardeep Singh Puri, the Minister of Civil Aviation of India, made this announcement while addressing a function at India Institute in the University of Birmingham.

Puri said that Guru Nanak was well aware of the challenges in the 15th and 16th century that we are facing today. He said that Guru Nanak Dev Ji was in favor of empowering women, environmental protection and stopping radicalization, and these same challenges are being faced by present man.

Puri further said that the message of Guru Sahib would get preached more strongly with the establishment of this chair in this important university. He claimed that the researchers will be able to make new discoveries.

“I believe that the Guru Nanak Chair will enable further research on how best the message of Guru Nanak can be shared with the larger community in the UK and beyond, and how mankind can benefit from this message which has an eternal value to make our world a better place,” he said.

Puri also said that the Indian government would pay constant attention to this chair. He said that usually when such events occur, attention is paid for this, but the Government of India will always help the Chair established in the name of Guru Sahib.

“First financial aid has been given for five years, but later on it will be extended again,” he added.

I am not at all happy with the Indian government meddling in the affairs of the UK Sikhs.
Accepting money from the Modi sarkar means that you have to say and do what Modi says.

Man in Blue

Gentbrugge – Gentbrugse Meersen

Gentbrugse Meersen
24 October 2019

More wilderness

Shortcut avoiding concrete path

Birch trees overhanging the path

Nice big trees along this path

Black and white horse show

Wagging its tail ….

More Belgian pictures to be published
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

Hindustan Times – 1,100 Indian Sikhs arrive at Pakistan’s Panja Sahib

Islamabad Capital Territory – Pakistan, 04 November 2019. More than 1,000 Sikhs from India arrived at Gurdwara Panja Sahib in Pakistan’s Hasanabdal city on Sunday as part of the Nagar Kirtan, a religious procession, held to mark the 550th birth anniversary of Sikhism founder Guru Nanak Dev.

The gurdwara in Punjab province was decorated with colourful lights and pilgrims offered prayers.

Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) deputy secretary, shrines, Imran Gondal said that more than 1,100 Sikhs crossed the border through Wagah on October 31 via Ludhiana and Amritsar, Dawn reported.

The Sikh pilgrims visited Gurdwara Janamasthan, Nankana Sahib, Gurdwara Sacha Sauda Farooqabad and other shrines. The pilgrimage will conclude at Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur, where a gold palanquin, Palki Sahib, will be installed.

“Around 1,300 visas issued for the Nagar Kirtan are over and above the contingent covered under the Protocol on Visits to Religious Shrines, 1974, between Pakistan and India,” Gondal was quoted as saying.

Gondal said the board along with the Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee and the district administration, has made accommodation arrangements for the pilgrims. Attock district police officer Shahzad Nadeem Bukhari said that multi-layered security plans are in place.

The Kartarpur Corridor, to be opened on 09 November, will connect the Dera Baba Nanak Gurdwara in Indian Punjab with Darbar Sahib at Kartarpur, 4 km from the border, in Narowal district of Pakistan Punjab.

Meanwhile, a 178-member delegation has arrived in Pakistan from the UK to take part in the celebrations at Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara on November 12. The gurdwara, originally known as Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, is the final resting place of Guru Nanak Dev, who spent 18 years there.