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Plugged-In: Another child raped, Delhi miffed with Islamabad

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In The Times of India and Hindustan Times today, headlines on the nationwide protests demanding justice for the alleged Kathua and Unnao victims are juxtaposed with one about an 11-year-old’s alleged rape and murder in Surat. Her body was reportedly found with at least 86 injuries.

Resignations of J&K ministers accepted. Jammu & Kashmir CM Mehbooba Mufti accepted Sunday the resignations of the ministers, Choudhary Lal Singh and Chandar Prakash Ganga, who rallied in support of the suspects in the Kathua rape and murder, The Hindu reports. The daily also tells us that the Bar Council of India (BCI) has asked the bar associations of Kathua and Jammu to call off their strike and “constituted a five-member committee to inquire into the misconduct by the lawyers.”

Protest at India Gate

New Delhi has lodged a ‘strong protest’ with Islamabad “for preventing visiting Sikh pilgrims from meeting Indian diplomats and consular teams in Pakistan”, the ministry of external affairs (MEA) said in a statement Sunday, The Indian Express reports.

Niti Aayog proposes ‘One Nation, One Election’ ‘hack’: In a report exclusively accessed by The Economic Times, “The Niti Aayog has advocated ‘fixed tenures’ for the Lok Sabha and state assemblies” to avoid midterm elections if simultaneous elections have to be held across the country. It also suggested “provisions for a constructive vote of no confidence”.

Meanwhile, India’s third pillar of democracy is still trying to get its house in order. Amid growing tensions between the Centre and SC judges, law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad is set to meet CJI Misra next week to thrash out “outstanding issues”, Maneesh Chhibber reports for ThePrint.

A file photo of Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad
A file photo of law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad | PTI Photo by Kamal Singh

Speaking of which, ThePrint has some news of its own. The Editors Guild of India unanimously elected ThePrint founder and editor-in-chief Shekhar Gupta president at its annual general body meeting Saturday.

Yogi Adityanath’s ‘Encounter Pradesh’ is back on the media radar “after an audio clip surfaced on social media, purportedly of an officer alerting the ‘target’ — and asking him to strike a deal with two BJP leaders”, The Indian Express reports. In the purported tape, Mauranipur police station in-charge Suneet Kumar Singh is also allegedly heard boasting: “Don’t know how many I have killed and dumped.”

Yogi Adityanath
A file image of Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath delivering a speech | Facebook

Congress announces Karnataka candidates. After a three-day discussion in New Delhi, the Congress on Sunday announced candidates for 218 of the total 224 constituencies in Karnataka. The Hindu tells us that chief minister Siddaramaiah will contest only from one seat — Chamundeshwari in Mysuru.

The Commonwealth Games came to an end Sunday, and “India bagged seven medals on the last day… finishing with 66 medals, the third highest haul at the event”, Hindustan Times reports. The women’s single badminton final was an event for the history books, with Saina Nehwal winning her second CWG gold after defeating P.V. Sindhu in straight games on the weekend.

Women’s singles gold medalist Saina Nehwal and silver medalist P.V. Sindhu at Gold Coast, Australia, Sunday. PTI/ Manvender Vashist

Business Class

The new player in the Flipkart-Amazon rivalry: “To counter Amazon, Walmart, the world’s biggest retail chain, is likely to take Flipkart’s e-commerce model to the US,” Business Standard reports.

The RBI is set to loosen stringent NPA norms, granting a request made by the finance ministry, reports The Economic Times. According to the report, “The one-day non-performing asset (NPA) classification norm may be extended to 30 days, and the requirement that a resolution plan has to be approved by all lenders could be lowered to 75%.”

News it’s just kinda cool to know

The government has a new radio show: If you enjoy PM Modi’s Mann ki Baat, now you have another radio show to look forward to! Public broadcaster All India Radio has started a series called Jan Seva Samvad to help the Centre spread the word on its achievements and flagship schemes. I&B minister Smriti Irani was the first guest, Amrita Nayak Dutta reports for ThePrint.

Smriti Irani
Smriti Irani | Arun Sharma/Hindustan Times via Getty Images

We need a Pied Piper of Agra, because “thousands of rats, burrowing underground for years, brought down a three-storey building in Agra” this weekend, The Times of India reports. The bizarre episode, which took place Sunday morning, was caught on video and went viral. Just in case you’re wondering, no one was harmed, except probably some rats.

Point of View

US-led Western powers launched missile strikes on Syria. Both The Indian Express and The Hindu, in their editorials, have criticised the US and its allies. The Hindu writes, “It is… doubtful if Mr Trump’s ‘mission accomplished’ bravado is justified.” The Indian Express writes, “…Questions about the legitimacy and effectiveness of the action have come to the fore.”

Lately, the banking sector in India has seen one crisis after another. Manish Sabharawal, an independent director in the RBI board, writes in his column in The Indian Express, “India’s banking crisis, a child of many parents, is surely part revenge for a multi-decade disastrous policy of regulatory forbearance in bad loan accounting.”

The gate of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) headquarters in New Delhi. | Anindito Mukherjee/Bloomberg

The Commonwealth Games in Australia gave India many reasons to be happy about. The Hindu writes in its editorial, “Indian athletes make a mark in diverse sports at the Commonwealth Games.”

The Trump administration has complained against India at WTO for its high trade tariffs. BJP general secretary Ram Madhav, in his column in The Times Of India, writes that the relationship status must grow “beyond transactionalism”. He adds, “It is this transactional nature of Trump’s dealings that has brought our two countries face-to-face at WTO today. But is the US-India relationship about trade alone?”

Donald Trump and Narendra Modi
Donald Trump and Narendra Modi | Commons

The recent order of the Supreme Court regarding the SC/ST Act created a massive uproar in the country. BJP Rajya Sabha member Bhupender Yadav, in his column in The Economic Times, writes that court did not take into cognisance the historical reality of crimes against the SCs and STs while issuing its order.

In a historic judgment, the Pakistan supreme court has barred Nawaz Sharif for life from holding any public office. Karachi-based political economist S. Akbar Zaidi, in his column in The Hindu, writes, “Even as the court bars him from public office, it is unwise to make predictions in Pakistani politics… Mr Sharif’s fate seems sealed for now, as it was two decades ago. Yet, back then he made a spectacular comeback.”

Nawaz Sharif
Nawaz Sharif | Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images

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