CMYK MONDAY www.thestatesman.com 16 APRIL 2018 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 16 |` 5.00|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR P6 WEATHER Partly cloudy sky. Rain/thundershower in some areas towards afternoon or evening. Max & min temp 37/25 degree celsius RAINFALL: 0.2 mm RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max.81% TEMPERATURE IRAN NUCLEAR DEAL’S FATE HANGS IN BALANCE GEN. BAJWA BACKS DIALOGUE WITH INDIA A TALK WITH MR OLI P9 P10 Surat confronts own Kathua horror 11-yr-old held captive, raped & murdered; body bore 86 wounds Min. 29% STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE AHMEDABAD, 15 APRIL Max: 36.6°C (+1) Min: 24.1°C (-1) SUN RISES SUN SETS 05:15 hrs 17:57 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS 05.32 hrs 18:17 hrs s thousands protested across the country on Sunday against the Kathua rape and murder and the Unnao rape incident, the spectre of a Kathua-like horror has gripped Gujarat’s Surat following the recovery of an 11-year-old girl’s body with as many as 86 wounds on her body. The mutilated body, yet to be identified, was found in the bushes behind an open ground in Surat’s Bhestan area about a week ago. The post-mortem report indicated that she was raped and tortured for more than a week before being strangled to death. The 86 injuries on the girl’s body included several wounds on her private parts. The Surat police have not been able to establish the identity of the girl in more than a week after the discovery of her body. The murdered girl’s attributes are being compared with profiles of missing persons registered in the district and neighbouring areas. While the police had earlier said that a body of a girl had been found, details of the case were made public today with Surat police commissioner Satish Sharma meeting the Press. No one has come forward with any clue yet despite the police announc- A New moon today THUMBNAILS Residents stand next to their belongings which were burnt in a fire early on Sunday at a Rohingya camp in the Kalindi Kunj area in the Capital. AMARJEET SINGH Syria chemical weapons: Britain, France and the United States are set to make a fresh call to the United Nations for an investigation into the use of chemical weapons in Syria. The three allies will submit a draft resolution to the Security Council condemning chemical attacks, especially the suspected release of chlorine gas in Douma on 7 April, France’s UN ambassador Francois Delattre said. Meanwhile, the Security Council has rejected a separate resolution tabled by Russia calling for condemnation of Saturday’s airstrikes by the US and its allies on Syrian targets. Missing Indian family: A woman's body was found by rescuers in the US during the search of a missing Indian family of four who are feared drowned in a swollen river in California, officials said. An inter-agency search and rescue team in California on Friday also recovered some personal items and numerous parts of a vehicle from a swollen river in which the missing Indian family was travelling last week. Congress list: The Congress on Sunday announced the first list of 218 candidates for next month’s Karnataka Assembly elections, which includes the names of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and state party chief G Parameshwara. While Siddaramaiah will contest from Chamundeshwari, his son Yatheendra will contest from Varuna constituency. An India Today Group-Karvy Insights opinion poll, meanwhile, indicated a hung Assembly after the elections scheduled for 12 May, with the Congress as the single largest party. Protesters display placards during a demonstration against the Kathua and Unnao rape cases as they gather near Parliament in the capital on Sunday. RITIK JAIN Police said the child, as yet unidentified, may have been from Odisha or Bengal ing a reward of Rs 20,000 for any tips leading to identification of the body and/or arrest of the culprits. The police have registered a case against unidentified persons under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act and the Indian Penal Code. PTI quoted Dr Ganesh Govekar, a doctor at the City Civil Hospital where the autopsy was done, as saying, “Going by the nature of injuries, they seem to have been caused over a period ranging from one week to a day prior to the recovery of the body, suggesting that the girl, who is between nine to 11 years of age, might have been held captive, tortured and possibly raped.” Police were first alerted by a Pandesara resident whose wife and a neighbour had spotted the body in the bushes during their morning walk on 6 April. A case of accidental death was registered initially but it was changed after the post mortem report revealed rape and torture with 86 wounds. The police commissioner said the investigation has been handed over to the city police's Crime Branch and all efforts are being made to identify the girl. “We need to identify the girl to solve the case.We are focusing on Odisha and West Bengal, as she is likely to be from either of the two states,” he said, adding that so far police have scanned data of 8,000 missing children. Coming as it did when the heat and dust raised by the rapes and murder in Kathua and Unnao are yet to settle, the incident has shaken the conscience of people here. Various civil rights organisations, which had earlier planned protests marches with candle lights this evening on the Kathua and Unnao episodes, have added the Surat incident too to their agenda. GOLD COAST, 15 APRIL The star badminton trio of Saina Nehwal, P Sindhu .V. and Kidambi Srikanth were the centre of attraction as the Indian contingent ended their campaign at the 21st Commonwealth Games (CWG) on a high here on Sunday. India bagged a total of six medals on the final day. India finished the Games with 26 golds, 20 silvers and 20 bronze medals. This year's total of 66 medals is the third highest haul for India in the history of the CWG. Their best performance till date came at home during the 2010 Delhi Games, which produced a tally of 101 medals. That included 38 gold, 27 silver and 36 bronze. The second highest medals tally of 69 came at the 2002 Games in Manchester, England. The Indian contingent won 30 gold at that edition along with 22 silver and 17 bronze. Saina and Sindhu were involved in an intense, high tempo women's singles final. Saina displayed superb form to clinch a 21-18, 2321 victory for the second CWG singles title of her career. Her maiden CWG singles gold came at the 2010 Games in New Delhi. For Sindhu, this was the second CWG singles medal of her career, the first being bronze at Glasgow 2014. Srikanth was involved in an equally entertaining men's singles final against Malaysian legend Lee Chong Wei. Although Srikanth dominated the opening game, Lee showed his true class later in the contest to register a 19-21, 21-14, 2114 victory for the fifth CWG title of a glittering career. The last two games were totally one-sided as the veteran Malaysian star handed out a masterclass in placement and deception. Srikanth was virtually reduced to a spectator as Lee piled on the points. The men's doubles team of Satwik Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty also settled for the silver medal after going down 13-21, 16-21 to England's Marcus Ellis and Chris Langridge. In squash, defending champions Dipika Pallikal and Joshna Chinappa settled for the silver medal in women's doubles after losing 9-11, 8-11 to New PRESS TRUST OF INDIA JAMMU, 15 APRIL The trial in the gruesome Kathua rape and murder case begins tomorrow against eight accused who allegedly held an eightyear-old girl in captivity in a small village temple in Kathua district for a week in January this year during which she was kept sedated and sexually assaulted before being bludgeoned to death. The accused include a juvenile against whom a separate charge sheet was filed. The chief judicial magistrate of Kathua will be committing one of the charge sheets, in which seven people have been named, to the sessions court for trial as mandated under the law. The CJM will, however, hold the trial for the juvenile as it is the designated court under the juvenile act, according to officials. The Jammu and Kashmir government has appointed two special public prosecutors, both Sikhs, for the trial in the sensitive case, a move being seen as made to ensure “neutrality” in view of Hindu-Muslim polarisation over the case. The trial is expected to go smoothly after the Jammu Bar association as well as the Kathua Bar received a rap on the knuckles on 13 April from the Supreme Court, which took strong note of some lawyers obstructing the judicial process in the case. Zealand's Joelle King and Amanda Landers-Murphy. This was Joshna's first and Dipika's second medal at Gold Coast after taking silver in the mixed doubles with Saurav Ghosal. Veteran table tennis star Achanta Sharath Kamal bagged the men's singles bronze medal by beating England's SamuelWalker 117, 11-9, 9-11, 11-6, 12-10. Meanwhile, Manika Batra grabbed her fourth medal at this year's CWG. She bagged bronze in the mixed doubles table tennis competition in the company of Sathiyan Gnanasekaran. Manika and Sathiyan defeated compatriots Sharath Kamal and Mouma Das 11-6, 11-2, 11-4 in the play-off for the third position at the Oxenford Studios here. Centre mulls options on SC/ST verdict Protests during Modi’s UK visit STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE LONDON, 15 APRIL Bringing an ordinance to restore the original provisions of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act is one of the options being considered NEW DELHI, 15 APRIL There is a need to overturn the Supreme Court order laying down fresh guidelines on arrest of those accused of committing atrocities against SC and ST communities, the government feels, and bringing an ordinance to restore the original provisions of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act is one of the options being considered. Sources aware of deliberations within the government at different levels say promulgating an ordinance to restore the original provisions would help calm tempers. Introducing a bill in the Monsoon session of Parliament slated for July to amend the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 to overturn the SC order is the second option before the government, the sources said. “If an ordinance is issued, it too will have to be converted into a Bill and passed by Parliament. The result of the two exercises is the same ~ to restore the original provisions. But the ordinance has the benefit of giving instant results. It will help calm tempers immediately,” a senior functionary said. Dalit groups had organised protests across the country on 2 April against the alleged dilution of the Act through the 20 March verdict of the Supreme Court. The protests had turned violent at several places which left several people dead. Opposition parties have also accused the government of failing to protect Dalit rights. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday asserted his government will not let the law to prevent atrocities on SCs and STs to be diluted. “I want to assure the nation that the law which has been made stringent by us will not allowed to be affected (by the SC order)...,” the Prime Minister had said. But the sources said no decision has been taken so far and much would depend on the way the hearing on a review petition filed by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment in the apex court progresses. They said since review pleas may not bear immediate results and the Supreme Court decision could not be favourable, the government will have to firm up its stand on a future course of action. The apex court had laid down new guidelines for police officers on how to ensure that innocent people, especially public officials, are protected from false complaints under the act. In a written submission filed before the top court on Friday, the Centre said the verdict on the SC/ST Act has “diluted” its stringent provisions, resulting in “great damage” to the country by causing anger and a sense of disharmony among the people. CMYK Observing that the court had dealt with an issue of a “very sensitive nature”, the submission said the verdict has caused “commotion, anger, unease and a sense of disharmony” in the country. It dubbed the entire judgement as “vitiated” as it proceeded on the basis that the top court can legislate a law despite having no such power. The stand of the government came a week after the apex court refused to keep in abeyance its verdict, saying those agitating against its order putting in place certain safeguards on arrests under the 1989 Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, may not have read the judgment or could have been misled by “vested interests”. The written submissions filed by Attorney General K K Venugopal said “this judgment has diluted, for the reasons stated, the provisions of the Atrocities Act read with the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, resulting in great damage to the country”. P12 Kathua rape-murder trial to begin today India wrap up CWG campaign with 3rd largest haul INDO-ASIAN NEWS SERVICE KNIGHTS FACE DAREDEVILS TEST. A face-off between pro and anti-India groups is likely in London on 18 April, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi attends the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting and addresses a diaspora event at Central Hall Westminster. Some Sikh groups have announced their plans to demonstrate, which is likely to be joined by proPakistan groups. A demonstration has also been announced by the South Asia Solidarity Group, an anti-imperialist, anti-racist organisation based in Britain. However, some members of the Indian community have said that this time, there will be a “strong counterprotest” by pro-India groups to welcome Modi. Modi is also due to meet Prime Minister Theresa May as well as with Queen Elizabeth. AGENCIES Mufti accepts two BJP ministers’ resignation PRESS TRUST OF INDIA SRINAGAR, 15 APRIL Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti today accepted the resignations of two controversial BJP ministers, who had participated in a rally in support of the people arrested in connection with the rape and murder of an eight-year-old Muslim girl in Kathua, officials said. The resignations of Lal Singh and Chander Prakash Ganga were received from BJP state chief Sat Sharma this morning which were The Supreme Court initiated a case on its own record saying such impediment “affects the dispensation of justice and would amount to obstruction of access to justice”. According to the charge sheets filed by the crime branch, the abduction, rape and killing of the Bakerwal girl was part of a carefully planned strategy to remove the minority nomadic community from the area. It lists the caretaker of 'Devisthan', a small temple, in a village in Kathua, as the main conspirator behind the crime. Sanji Ram was allegedly joined by special police officers Deepak Khajuria and Suren- immediately accepted and forwarded to Governor N N Vohra for completing the procedural formalities, they said. With these resignations, the number of ministers in the state government has come down to 22, including nine from the BJP . Both Ganga and Singh had participated in a rally on March 1 after the crime branch of Jammu and Kashmir Police had arrested the nephew of a caretaker of a 'Devisthan' (temple) in connection with the kidnapping and rape of the little girl. der Verma, friend Parvesh Kumar alias Mannu, Ram's nephew, a juvenile, and his son Vishal Jangotra. The charge sheet also names investigating officers head constable Tilak Raj and Sub-Inspector Anand Dutta, who allegedly took Rs 4 lakh from Ram and destroyed crucial evidence. All eight are under arrest. The Bar Association of Kathua has already retracted its earlier pledge of providing free legal assistance to the accused and said after going through the charge sheet that the allegations against the accused are very grave and as such this case is to be dealt with in a professional way. Pak prevents Sikh pilgrims from meeting diplomats STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 15 APRIL India today lodged a strong protest with Pakistan over blocking of access of visiting Sikh pilgrims to Indian diplomats in that country and “compelling” the Indian envoy to return while on the way to a prominent gurudwara there. A ‘jatha’ of around 1800 Sikh pilgrims is on a visit to Pakistan from 12 April under a bilateral agreement on facilitating visits to religious shrines. In a statement, the minsitry of external affairs (MEA) said the Indian High Commissioner, who was to greet Indian pilgrims on the occasion of Baisakhi, was compelled to return when he was en route to Gurdwara Panja Sahib yesterday. The MEA called it an “inexplicable diplomatic discourtesy” by Pakistan, holding that these incidents constitute a clear violation of the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations. “India has lodged a strong protest with Pakistan over a block of access for visiting pilgrims to Indian diplomats and consular teams,” it said. The fresh incidents came over two weeks after India and Pakistan agreed to resolve matters related to treatment of diplomats after envoys of the two countries made claims and counter-claims about harassment of each other's diplomats. The MEA said the Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan, who was to visit Gurdwara Panja Sahib at the invitation of the chairman of the Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB), was suddenly asked to return while en route the shrine yesterday, for unspecified The High Commissioner, who was to greet the pilgrims on the occasion of Baisakhi, was compelled to return when he was en route to Gurdwara Panja Sahib ‘security’ reasons. It said the High Commissioner, who was to greet Indian pilgrims on the occasion of Baisakhi, was thus compelled to return without meeting Indian citizens. ”India has lodged a strong protest with Pakistan against this inexplicable diplomatic discourtesy, pointing out that these incidents constitute a clear violation of theVienna Convention of 1961, the bilateral Protocol to visit Religious Shrines, 1974 and the Code of Conduct (for the treatment of diplomatic/consular personnel in India and Pakistan) of 1992, recently reaffirmed by both countries,” the MEA said. It said a standard practice has been that the Indian High Commission's consular/protocol team is attached with visiting pilgrims, to perform consular and protocol duties, like helping out in medical or family emergencies. “However, this year, the consular team has been denied access to Indian Sikh pilgrims. The team could not meet the pilgrims on their arrival atWagah Railway Station on April 12. Similarly, it was denied entry into Gurdwara Panja Sahib on April 14, for a scheduled meeting with pilgrims there. The High Commission was thus prevented from performing basic consular and protocol duties for Indian citizens,” it said.
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