The Morning Wrap: Lawyers Thrash Media, JNU Faculty In Court; Punjab Govt Bans 'Vulgar Songs' In State Buses

16/02/2016 9:06 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:26 AM IST
Hindustan Times via Getty Images
NEW DELHI, INDIA - FEBRUARY 12: Police trying to stop residents of nearby Munirka Village during demonstration against the organisers of the event on Afzal Guru where anti-national slogans were raised at JNU Campus on February 12, 2016 in New Delhi, India. JNU students’ Union President Kanhaiya Kumar was arrested on in connection with a case of sedition and criminal conspiracy over holding of an event at the prestigious institute against hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru in 2013. A group of students on Tuesday held an event on the JNU campus and allegedly shouted slogans against India. (Photo by Arun Sharma/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi's constituency of Varanasi, the holy city in Uttar Pradesh, which heaped electoral glory on the leader from Gujarat in 2014, is ranked among the country's 10 dirtiest cities.

The nation said its goodbye to the nine soldiers who lost their lives in the Siachen avalanche. The bodies were brought to the capital and will be flown out by the Indian Air Force to be handed over to their families in different parts of the country.

The Patiala House Court extended the custody of JNU Students’ Union president Kanhaiya Kumar by two days. Kumar was slapped with sedition charges for allegedly raising anti-India slogans at a meeting to protest the the hanging of Afzal Guru.

The Punjab government banned playing of "vulgar songs" and "provocative music" in state-run buses, following complaints in this regard. Random surprise checks have been ordered to ensure compliance.

The main accused in the abduction of a young Snapdeal employee Dipti Sarna last week is a "psychopath" who read Mein Kampf in jail, stalked his victim over 150 times in one year, was convinced that she would eventually agree to marry him and was inspired by actor Shah Rukh Khan's role of an unhinged stalker in the 1993 thriller Darr, the police said.

Main News

India may finally exorcise its Bofors ghost of 30 years. After several years of hard-nosed negotiations, which also saw the proposed deal being stalled for a couple of years, the US government finally submitted an over $700 million offer for India to acquire 145 M-777 ultra-light howitzers.

In the soon-to-be-filed charge sheet in a sexual harassment case against RK Pachauri, executive vice-chairman of The Energy and Resources Institute, investigators have documented text messages exchanged between him and the victim to buttress her allegations.

The Sindh Assembly passed the Hindu Marriage Bill 2015, becoming the first provincial legislature in Pakistan to formalise the recognition of marriages of the Hindu, Sikh and Jain minorities. Hindu leaders said the bill ensures the protection of rights of divorced women.

The Supreme Court said Parliament or the “people's court” should be the final judge to decide the legality of passive euthanasia. The Centre agreed with the apex court and illustrated the complexity of medically taking a person's life by pointing at how Formula One legend Michael Schumacher is “being kept alive for years in the hope he will wake up from his coma one day”.

About 50 civilians were killed when missiles hit five medical centers and two schools in rebel-held Syrian towns, the UN and residents said. The carnage occurred as Russian-backed Syrian troops intensified their push toward the rebel stronghold of Aleppo.

Off The Front Page

Irate over the loss of his farm produce, a farmer took his hen to a police station, holding it responsible for an incident of fire that reduced his recently harvested crop to ashes at Deoli village in Jharkhand. He was "not ready to be convinced despite our best efforts to make him understand that a complaint cannot be lodged against a hen,” said a police officer.

Pooja Mehra, the daughter of a farmer in a remote village of Bageshwar district of Uttarakhand, is going to scale the world's highest peak, Mount Everest. A class 12 student of a government college, Pooja is one of the 10 NCC cadets selected nationally to climb Mount Everest in April.

Nine years after his reign of terror ended in a police encounter, slain dacoit Shiv Kumar Patel alias Dadua came back to haunt the state administration with the unveiling of his idol at a temple in a small hamlet of Fatehpur district.

Tanya Morzaria, a class XI student from Gujarat, has been selected for the junior Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel award for her excellent performance in shooting at national level in the last four years. Tanya, a national pistol shooter, will receive the prestigious government award in Gandhinagar.

Unable to file nomination, a BJP leader alleged abduction. BJP candidate for MLC (local body) election from Agra Tejpratap Singh went missing after failing to file his nomination. BJP leaders claimed it to be a case of kidnapping by rival Samajwadi Party (SP).


It is often said that conducting foreign policy gets more challenging as we come closer to our own borders. This couldn’t be truer in India’s case and especially in relation to Pakistan. In today’s world where clear power blocs do not exist, where new threats emanate frequently, and where dominance of non-State actors adds to the complexities, we must deploy every resource to be able to safeguard our national interest and security and contain disruptive forces that inflict maximum damage on us, writes Sachin Pilotin the Hindustan Times.

It is unlikely that Parliament will repeal Section 124A on sedition in a hurry. The way to protect free speech then is to focus on procedural reforms and safeguards that render malicious use more difficult, writes Lawrence Liang in The Indian Express. “The true test of a democracy lies in how much it can tolerate disagreement and even speech that we strongly disagree with. But despite the Supreme Court affirming our right to disagree and dissent in substantive law, the ease of filing complaints and the ever-looming threat of police action undoes procedurally what we have substantively.”

The agreement reached in Munich by major world powers, including the United States and Russia, to work towards a cessation of hostilities in Syria within a week is the most constructive step yet to find a political solution to the country’s civil war…The war has nearly destroyed the country, triggering an unprecedented humanitarian crisis, says an editorial in The Hindu.

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