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The Morning Wrap: Nirbhaya Case Convict Attempts Suicide In Jail; Linux Turns 25

Our selection of interesting news and opinion from the day's newspapers.

25/08/2016 8:39 AM IST | Updated 25/08/2016 9:53 AM IST
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The Morning Wrap is HuffPost India's selection of interesting news and opinion from the day's newspapers. Subscribe here to receive it in your inbox each weekday morning.

Essential HuffPost

India has recently been outraging about British journalist Piers Morgan's tweet calling "the wild celebrations" in the country "for two losing medals" embarrassing. While Twitter put up a spirited and entertaining defence — because there is nothing to be embarrassed about celebrating the achievements of athletes who surmounted enormous odds to win their country medals — here's the bleak reality. While India has been celebrating its slim pickings in the medal tally, a population and GDP-based analysis has shone harsh light on the true bleakness of our performance in Rio. An analysis which looked at the number of medals per capita (number of medals divided by the population) and the medal tally adjusted for GDP (number of medals per 100 billion pounds of GDP), India came at the rock bottom.

The proposed draft Surrogacy Bill 2016, which was passed by the Union Cabinet on Wednesday, is expected to be introduced into the Parliament. The draft bill has several checks on who is an eligible candidate for surrogacy, and also has restrictions on who can be a surrogate mother. The government, in this legislation, has also tried to define a couple in "need" for a surrogate child. Some of the key points in the Surrogacy Bill 2016 include banning commercial surrogacy and curbing Indian women to give birth to the children of foreign nationals. The bill also says that a couple should have been married for over five years, and that parents who already have an child (adopted or biological) can't use surrogacy.

Muslim women have some of the highest divorce rates in India, figures from Census 2011 suggest. Data further point out that of all married Muslim women, those between the ages of 20 and 34 are most susceptible to being divorced. According to reports, five in every 1,000 Muslim women are vulnerable to being divorced, compared to two or three per 1,000 among Jain, Hindu and Sikh women. The report indicates that the custom of triple talaq is one of the reasons behind the high incidence of divorce in the community.

Main News

One of the convicts in the Nirbhaya case who was sentenced to death for rape and murder, attempted suicide on Wednesday night in Tihar jail. Convict Vinay Sharma consumed pills and tried to hang himself after. Sharma demanded extra security in jail last year, claiming that he was physically assaulted by other inmates and police officials. Ram Singh, another prime accused in the Nirbhaya case, was found hanging inside Tihar jail in 2013.

JNU student Anmol Ratan, who has been accused of rape by a PhD student from the same university, surrendered in Delhi on Wednesday. Ratan had been accused of spiking the drink of a woman PhD student and raping her. He had also allegedly threatened to kill her if she talked about he incident.

French naval contractor DCNS said it may have been the victim of "economic warfare" after secrets about its Scorpéne submarines being built in India were leaked. India opened an investigation after a newspaper published documents relating to the submarine's combat capabilities, raising concerns over another major contract with Australia.

Off The Front Page

The body of an eight-year-old boy was found floating on Thursday in a water-filled ditch on an empty plot of land in northeast Delhi's Seelampur area. The boy, identified as Amit, had been missing since Wednesday evening. He was last seen flying kite in the plot along with other children before his body was found floating in the ditch.

Textiles minister Smriti Irani recently confessed that her application for a cabin crew position at Jet Airways was denied because of her 'lack of good personality'. The television actor-turned-politician was then forced to work at McDonalds and then work in television series.

The Linux operating turned 25 years old this month. On 25 August 1991, founder Linus Torvalds posted his famous message announcing the project, saying that Linux was "just a hobby, won't be big and professional like gnu."

Opinion

Tamil Nadu government filed 213 cases over the last 5 years against people for defaming the chief minister, but many believe that as a woman leader J Jayalalitha is the victim of overtly personal attacks by political opponents, writes Sai Manish in DNA. "But it's not just Jayalalithaa. Last year, finance minister Arun Jaitley dragged Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal to court for defamation. Dr C Lakshmanan of the Madras Institute of Development Studies has opined that in a lot of cases defamation is real and that the court has to make a qualitative differentiation between what is genuine criticism and what is derogatory," writes Manish.

Perumal Murugan had the support of fellow writers and human rights activists, but the state's executive failed to protect him, writes Salil Tripathi in Mint. "We live in a time where such chupwalas are on the march — they want to silence writers and critics who raise their voices. They seek submission, surrender, retreat and silence, if they can't get acclaim. They define their bigotry and totalitarian tendencies by claiming that they too have the right to speak. Of course they do. What they do not have is the right to silence others. That's the line they crossed. Having little regard for the law, they would—but it was for the state to defend the writer. It failed. A judge stopped the madness. He implored the writer to write. The writer has now obliged. He will speak — it is time to listen," he says.

The new citizenship legislation should include refugees from persecuted minorities of all denominations who have made India their home, wrote V Suryanarayan and Geeta Ramaseshan in The Hindu. "Immigrants, even those who are termed illegal, are entitled to equal protection before the law and the various rights that flow from Article 21. This was stressed by the Supreme Court in National Human Rights Commission v. State of Arunachal Pradesh while addressing the rights of Chakma refugees. If such immigrants are granted citizenship, the natural progression would mean that they enjoy the benefits of rights guaranteed under Article 19 besides others such as access to the public distribution system, right to participate in the political process, right to secure employment and other rights all of which currently are inaccessible to them. The Bill recognises this in its objects and reasons by referring to the denial of opportunities and advantages to such persons," they write.

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