New Age Islam
Wed Aug 12 2020, 10:14 PM

Islamic World News ( 1 Oct 2011, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Mahatma Gandhi's Non-violence Helped Topple Tyrannical Regimes: Ban Ki-moon

Held for ‘9/11-type’ plot, no case 4 years later

Iran hangs convicted rapist

Afghan peace process in India’s favour unacceptable to Pakistan: Musharraf

Sonia Gandhi- Sheikh Hasina bonhomie ahead of Teen Bigha access for Bangladesh

Afghan aide Burhanuddin Rabbani's killer 'Pakistani': Afghan President Statement

With uproar in Cobb school, Georgia may pull lesson about Islam

Hillary warns Pak about keeping 'wild animal in your backyard'

Pakistani Women playing vital role in society

Yemeni jet mistakenly bombs army post, kills 30

4 militants killed as Army foils infiltration bid in north Kashmir

Disillusioned with Pak, Karzai to strengthen ties with India

Karzai says talks with Taliban useless

Washington puts Americans worldwide on alert against al-Qaida retaliation

Israeli wins right to no religion

Afghanistan urges Pakistan to take steps for peace

Yousuf Raza Gilani urges Kabul to stop blame game over Rabbani’s murder

Libya conflict: Hundreds of residents flee Sirte

Libyan fighters seal off Qadhafi’s hometown

Yousuf Raza Gilani claims 'victory' in stand-off with US

US using Pakistan as scapegoat for failure in Afghanistan: Pervez Musharraf

Pak counter-terror measures not effective: Obama to Cong

Pak- born LeT militant arrested in Valley

Militant says got training from Pak army, ISI

CIA man who sparked row in Pak held in US for spat

Saudi bomb maker killed with Awlaki

Told to go despite Awlaki’s killing, Saleh minister cries betrayal by US

Kishanganga Project: Pak yet to win, India positive but reluctant to assert

Chinese media puts focus on J&K unmarked graves

Bharatpur: Minority panel blames govt

New recruits guard Bhatt’s family

Dreaded militant hit squad Khurasan goes rogue in Pak

Saba Pataudi royal Wakf boards patron

Indian Army gets its 1st woman jawan

US Muslims tried to change Inspire editor via counselling

Afghanistan Haqqani militant Haji Mali Khan captured

Indonesia: Suspect arrested over Solo church bombing

US says Palestinians must be willing to negotiate

Palestinian bid for statehood at UN doomed to fail: Iran

Iraq civilian deaths in Sept second lowest this year

Awlaki death may trigger anti-US attacks worldwide: State Dept

Two-yr hunt for Anwar al-Awlaki who left no trail

Syria warns U.S. envoy against meddling

Syria unrest: Troops 'control rebel town of Rastan'

Aga Khan a Spiritual Leader ordered to pay $80m to ex-wife

Egypt military proposes schedule for leaving power

No takers for Mahatma’s khadi spinning course at Aga Khan Palace

Under Mayawati, Muslims fare worse than Dalits in education

Gujarat: Bhatt goes to jail, wife sees threat to his life

Vendetta is core to Modi power play

‘Gujarat CM said kill proof & save Pandya killers ’

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/mahatma-gandhi-s-non-violence-helped-topple-tyrannical-regimes--ban-ki-moon/d/5606

 

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Mahatma Gandhi's non-violence helped topple tyrannical regimes: Ban Ki-moon

Oct 2, 2011

UNITED NATIONS: Paying rich tributes to Mahatma Gandhi, UN chief Ban Ki-moon has said the principle of non-violence preached by him helped topple tyrannical regimes from Tunisia to Egypt as people in these countries proved that it is more effective to "fire off a tweet than to fire a gun."

Commemorating the International Day of Non-Violence, which is celebrated to mark Gandhi's birth anniversary on October 2, Ban said "Gandhi ji" lived by the "conviction that only peaceful tactics could usher in a peaceful future, free from recrimination." For Gandhi, "means and ends were one," the UN Secretary General said.

He said the dramatic events of the past year in the Middle East and North African countries showed the immense power of non-violence.

"People in Tunisia, Egypt and beyond proved that it is more effective to fire off a tweet than to fire a gun. They did more than topple long-entrenched governments; they emboldened other oppressed people to think that the path of non-violence might work for them. This is not an easy path," he said at a special meeting attended by India's envoy to the UN Hardeep Singh Puri and leading historian Ramachandra Guha.

Ban said the "courageous" individuals who embrace non-violence effectively corner their oppressors.

"Non-violence confounds those who face it - and that is why it works," he said, recalling King Ashoka who had renounced violence, embraced Buddhism and devoted his life to peace.

"Mahatma Gandhi carried on this great Indian practice when he used the power of non-violence to lead a historic movement for India's independence."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Gandhis-non-violence-helped-topple-tyrannical-regimes-Ban-Ki-moon/articleshow/10201175.cms

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Held for ‘9/11-type’ plot, no case 4 years later

Oct 03 2011

New Delhi : It was a sensational claim. Presenting 24-year-old Imran Kirmani before waiting cameras on November 21, 2006, the Delhi Police’s Special Cell called him a member of “a Lashkar-e-Toiba module” that was “planning a 9/11-type strike in Delhi”.

Kirmani had a degree in aeronautical engineering from Jaipur, had done a six-month course at Amritsar Flying Club and was working with Star Aviation Academy — nobody asked any questions.

Four years, five months and 21 days later, Additional Sessions Judge Surinder S Rathi acquitted Kirmani, ripping apart the police case. All Kirmani has left are questions. “My dream has already died, there is no future,” he says. “How will I begin again? Who will accept me in the aviation industry? Who will return me five years of my life?”

The “distortions” began with the chargesheet filed in Kirmani’s case. While before the media police alleged a 9/11-like plot, in its chargesheet, the Special Cell claimed a tip-off from a central intelligence agency that a Lashkar militant had set up base in Delhi and was funding terror through hawala, and that his brother was an Imran, a resident of Dwarka. And that Imran also collected and transferred terror funds.

The police claimed to have recovered “around 1.5 kilogram of RDX, two automatic timers and 4.5 lakh rupees hawala money” from Kirmani and his “accomplice”. While releasing Kirmani, the court ordered that the money be returned to him because his family had produced substantial proof that they had sold a piece of land in Sopore to help Kirmani buy a single-bedroom flat in Delhi.

The house was part of a dream that Kirmani had only then started believing was possible. Belonging to Magam in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district, he had left his village at an early age and after Class V, joined Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya in Kupwara. Later he went to Chandigarh to finish his schooling.

“I wanted to become an aeronautical engineer. It was my dream,” he recalls. In January 2000, he joined the Rajiv Gandhi Memorial College of Aeronautics in Jaipur. It was a three-year course after which he took six-month training at Amritsar Flying Club.However, unable to find a job, he returned to Kashmir. Then, in 2005, he found a job with Star Aviation Academy in Delhi.

Things were falling into place, till that knock on the door of his Dwarka house on the afternoon of November 16, 2006. “When I opened the door, a group of men in civvies walked inside. They introduced themselves as officers of the Delhi Police’s Special Cell. They placed their pistols on the table and told me they needed my help to solve a case,” Kirmani recalls. “I was scared and confused. But before I could say anything, they asked me to accompany them. They told me that they didn’t want to create a scene and harm my reputation among the neighbours.”

Kirmani had Rs 4.5 lakh with him in the apartment, and the policemen confiscated the money. Kirmani was taken to a shopping complex in Sector 6 of Dwarka. “After some time, the police brought another Kashmiri. I didn’t know him then. He was Ghulam Rasool Bafanda. I saw the policemen give a bag to him (Bafanda) and ask him to leave. But as he walked a few metres, they ran after him and caught him, shouting ‘Pakdo, pakdo (Catch him)’,” he says. “It was a drama to show that they had arrested him from the shopping complex.”

A bag was then put over Kirmani’s head, he says. “They took me to some place. I heard cries of a man. It was Bafanda, they were torturing him. I didn’t know what was going on. It was scary.”

Bafanda, it later turned out, had actually been picked up from the exit gate of the domestic airport. Kirmani himself was kept in police custody for five days before being “produced”.

“When the Special Cell told the media I was part of an LeT module and we were planning a 9/11-type attack in Delhi, I was shocked,” Kirmani says. “But then I understood their game plan. Every Kashmiri living in Delhi is under watch and the Special Cell officers had found my credentials fit to cook up a sensational story.”

It was a nightmare for both him and his family. “I realised that my lawyer too is working against me. So I decided to argue the case myself.” Soon, he adds, the truth emerged. “They (Special Cell) couldn’t manage to hide their lies.”

The case and what the court said:

* The Special Cell claimed that “on 16.11.2006, a specific information was received at 3:30 pm from a secret informer saying Imran would be coming to Shopping Complex, Sector 6, Dwarka and will hand over a consignment of funds for the purpose of terrorism to one Ghulam Rasool at 6:30 pm”.

* Dismissing the “callous and inferior quality of investigation”, the Additional Sessions Judge said “even though it is claimed that secret input was received from Central Intelligence Agency in October 2006”, this was never put in writing. “The situation is further aggravated because there is no consensus amongst the witnesses on as to who received the information. As per SI R S Sherawat, it was he who received the secret information. As per SI Ramesh Lamba, he received the secret information. According to SI Ravinder Tyagi, he already had information in this regard. Most importantly as per ACP S K Yadav, it was he who received the information.”

* The judgment pointed out that the FSL report contradicted the description of the “RDX” allegedly seized from Kirmani. In fact, it negated the substance even being an explosive. Moreover, there was nothing in the records about the arms allegedly seized from Kirmani and Bafanda.

* “In his deposition, (Head Constable) Manoj stated that the ruqqa which was handed over to him from the spot consisted of only two pages, but ruqqa which is appended with chargesheet... is found to be containing seven pages. This smacks of antedating & fudging of record and documents,” the judgment said.

* The order also asked why a public witness was not arranged to join the raid.

* Questioning the post-arrest “investigations”, the judgment asked that if the “intelligence input was that Imran had set up a base at Dwarka, why absolutely no attempt whatsoever was made to ascertain or visit his house”. “It is quite improbable that when police claim to have arrested two terrorists who are said to be member of LeT, no raid is conducted at their claimed Delhi hideout... No attempt was made to verify his (Kirmani’s) old Delhi address or his conduct with his aviation employer”.

* “There is nothing on record to show that accused Imran and Ghulam were acquaintances... prior to their arrest. Also there is nothing on record to show that accused Imran is brother of accused Altaf, who has not been chargesheeted in the matter,” the judgment said.

Kirmani is happy at having been proved innocent and being out of custody, but fears, “life itself is a big jail now”.

After such injustice, the government didn’t even say sorry, he adds. “And when I was released, there was no media, no cameras waiting to tell the world that I was innocent. It wasn’t a story.”

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/held-for-9-11type-plot-no-case-4-years-later/854879/

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Iran hangs convicted rapist

Oct 02 2011

Tehran : Iran today hanged a convicted rapist in the northern city of Sari, the IRNA news agency reported.

The man sent to the gallows had threatened and raped his victim while claiming to be a law enforcement agent, the report added without giving further details.

The latest hanging brings to 207 the number of executions reported in Iran so far this year, according to an AFP tally based on media and official reports.

Iranian media reported 179 hangings last year but international human rights groups say the actual number was much higher, ranking the Islamic republic second only to China in the number of people it executed in 2010.

Tehran says the death penalty is essential to maintain law and order, and that it is applied only after exhaustive judicial proceedings.

Murder, rape, armed robbery, drug trafficking and adultery are among the crimes punishable by death in Iran.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/iran-hangs-convicted-rapist/854664/

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Afghan peace process in India’s favour unacceptable to Pakistan: Musharraf

Oct 03 2011

Islamabad: Claiming that India is being given space in Afghanistan’s peace process at the cost of Pakistan, former military dictator Pervez Musharraf has said the US must realise that such a situation would be unacceptable for Islamabad.

“Any result of a peace process (in Afghanistan) in favour of India would not be acceptable to Pakistan and the US must understand this,” said Musharraf, who currently lives in self-exile outside Pakistan.

Pakistan must use “all media sources, internal and external” to project the country’s “interests and reasoning” in Afghanistan, the 68-year-old former president said in an appearance on a programme on Express 24/7 news channel.

Musharraf was of the opinion that Pakistan and Afghanistan need to talk to those Taliban factions that seek peace. Reuters

Pakistan and the US should be on “the same page” on Afghanistan as any political instability in the war-torn country could lead to a repeat of the events that occurred in the 1990s following the fall of the Soviet Union, he said.

“If we have an unstable Afghanistan on the border, if the people of Afghanistan cannot handle the situation themselves (and) the coalition and the US (forces) leave as they have decided in 2014 and they leave a mess in Afghanistan, then that possibility of history repeating itself is very much possible,” he said.

Referring to accusations by American officials that the Inter-Services Intelligence agency was waging a proxy war in Afghanistan, Musharraf claimed the US was using Pakistan as a scapegoat for its failures in the neighbouring country.

He described the allegations about the ISI supporting the Haqqani network as “irresponsible”. The responsibility for dealing with the Haqqanis should be “equally shared” by Pakistan and the US, he said.

Pakistani forces should use whatever influence they have and tell the Haqqanis not to cross the border.  At the same time, US forces are responsible for controlling the Haqqanis on the Afghan side of the border, he added.

Musharraf said the blame game needs to stop so that Pakistan and the US could work against a common enemy. The world needs to understand Pakistan’s viewpoint and unless the US stops violating Pakistani interests, there could be no alliance between the two sides, he contended.

Doors for talks can never be closed, even with militant organisations, Musharraf said, noting that even the US has kept the door open for negotiations with the Haqqanis.

Musharraf claimed the way forward lay in talking to “peace-seeking Taliban”. He pointed out that while not all Pashtuns were Taliban, all Taliban were Pashtuns. “We need to identify the peace-seeking Taliban and hold reconciliatory talks with them,” he said.

Musharraf was of the opinion that Pakistan and Afghanistan need to talk to those Taliban factions that seek peace. However, this selective process had been dubbed by the US as a sort of double game, he claimed.

The former President rejected allegations that he had concluded a deal with the US administration during his regime to allow drone strikes in Pakistan. He said Pakistan had only provided logistical support for unarmed drones.

“If there was an agreement between me and the US…why has the new government not gone ahead and broken this agreement?” he asked.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/afghan-peace-process-in-indias-favour-unacceptable/854770/

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Sonia Gandhi - Sheikh Hasina bonhomie ahead of Teen Bigha access for Bangladesh

Oct 03 2011

New Delhi : A month after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Dhaka, Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina exchanged pleasantries through letters and photo albums. At an official level, New Delhi is “facilitating” an official ceremony to inaugurate the Teen Bigha corridor next week.

Sources said Gandhi sent a “thanks-giving letter” to Hasina last week expressing her gratitude for the hospitality during her July visit, which was promptly responded to by the Bangladesh PM’s office with an album of “pictures of Gandhi’s visit” taken during that trip.

The Gandhi-Hasina family relations go back to the previous generation of Indira Gandhi and Sheikh Mujibur Rehman.

With the warmth between the two political families at play, a month after India gave “24-hour unfettered access” to Bangladesh nationals through the Teen Bigha corridor, New Delhi and Dhaka are working towards an official ceremony on October 8 — when Hasina will drive through the corridor and formally inaugurate the round-the-clock access to the corridor.

The Teen Bigha corridor is a strip of land belonging to India — equivalent to the size of a football field — on the West Bengal-Bangladesh border, which separates Bangladesh from one of its enclaves, Dahagram. Between 1971 and 1992, India did not allow access to Dahagram, but in 1992, a 12-hour access was granted to Bangladesh. During Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit on September 6 and 7, India opened the access for 24 hours.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Sonia-Hasina-bonhomie-ahead-of-Teen-Bigha-access-for-Bangladesh/854809/

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Afghan aide Burhanuddin Rabbani's killer 'Pakistani': Afghan President Statement

2 October 2011

The killer of Burhanuddin Rabbani, the Afghan government's negotiator with the Taliban, was a Pakistani, an Afghan presidential statement has said, quoting investigators.

Evidence from the case showed the murder was plotted in the Pakistani city of Quetta, the statement added.

Rabbani was assassinated on 20 September by a suicide attacker as he met Taliban members.

Afghan officials had already blamed Pakistan for the killing.

After Rabbani's death, Afghan President Hamid Karzai said his government would no longer hold peace talks with the Taliban - but would focus

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-15141985

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With uproar in Cobb school, Georgia may pull lesson about Islam

By David Ibata

Oct 2, 2011

A controversial lesson that some say presents Islam in an uncritical light may soon be pulled from the list of state-approved educational materials, Channel 2 Action News reports.

An uproar on the blogosphere over the lesson and alleged death threats followed a parent's complaint about  social studies materials defending Islamic precepts.

A teacher at Campbell Middle School in Cobb County had assigned students to write about the issue of school dress codes, and had handed out a fictional two-page letter ostensibly written by a 20-year-old Saudi Arabian woman. “Ahlima” writes approvingly of wearing the burqa, or Islamic veil, and of her fiance's multiple wives and the law of Sharia.

“I understand that some Westerners condemn our practice of polygamy, but I also know they are wrong,” the woman writes.

State school Superintendent John Barge told Channel 2 that the lesson was approved before he took office, and he would not have allowed it to be sent home with students for an assignment on dress codes. Nor, he added, was it appropriate for middle school students.

“When you start passing judgment on one culture or one religion being more appropriate, and especially criticizing our own culture as being wrong, that’s going too far,” Barge said.

Barge said there were too many opportunities for the author’s opinions to be passed off as fact. “What this lesson should be is about fact – they wear a burqa, or this is what their religion believes – not whether something is right or wrong,” he said.

Full report at:

http://www.ajc.com/news/cobb/with-uproar-in-cobb-1192325.html

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Hillary warns Pak about keeping 'wild animal in your backyard'

Oct 2, 2011

WASHINGTON: You can't keep a wild animal in your backyard and expect it to go only after your neighbor, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned Pakistan on Friday in unsparing criticism of its toxic policies in the neighborhood even as the country's beleaguered president Asif Ali Zardari pleaded with US for re-engagement after the Pakistani military's provocations in Afghanistan.

Clinton chose a lecture in her former home turf in Little Rock, Arkansas, to launch into one of the most candid appraisals of U.S-Pakistan ties going back three decades. She agreed that Pakistan had some basis for blaming Washington for its troubles given how the U.S had once encouraged "good terrorists," but "that in no way excuses the fact that they (Pakistan) are (now) making a serious, grievous, strategic error supporting these groups" (of "bad terrorists")

"You think that you can keep a wild animal in the backyard and it will only go after your neighbor?" Clinton asked rhetorically, implicitly referring to Pakistan unleashing terrorism in India and Afghanistan, and adding, "We have too many stories where that doesn't turn out like that."

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Hillary-warns-Pak-about-keeping-wild-animal-in-your-backyard/articleshow/10198502.cms

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Pakistani Women playing vital role in society

Oct 2, 2011

BAHAWALPUR - Islamia University Bahawalpur (IUB) Vice Chancellor Dr Muhammad Mukhtar has said that the women are finding equal opportunities in the society for their progress and development as today the Pakistani women are actively playing their vital role in a model Islamic society besides imparting training and upbringing the new generation.

He remarked these views during a meeting with the visiting guests from Nepal here Friday at the university. The visiting guests were headed by the South Asia Partnership International Director Dr Rohit Kumar.

The Vice-Chancellor said that presently 52 per cent of the IUB students had comprised on the girls which was a clear prove of women’s social development in Pakistan. “All the students are required to study a compulsory subject of Islamic studies, while non-Muslim students are taught ethics course,” he added.

The VC also pointed out the matters of bilateral academic and research collaboration and faculty exchange programmes with the Nepalese universities. Shanti Uprety, a Nepalese social activist, South Asia Partnership Pakistan Director Shabnam Rasheed and Cholistan Development Council Director Farooq Ahmed Khan were also present on the occasion.

http://nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Regional/Lahore/01-Oct-2011/Women-playing-vital-role-in-society

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Yemeni jet mistakenly bombs army post, kills 30

Oct 2, 2011

SANAA, Yemen: A government warplane mistakenly bombed an army position in southern Yemen, killing at least 30 soldiers and wounding many more, military and medical officials said Sunday.

The officials said the bombing, which took place on Saturday evening in the southern Abyan province, targeted an abandoned school used as shelter by soldiers of the army’s 119th Brigade. The school is located just east of Abyan’s provincial capital Zinjibar, where militants linked to Al-Qaeda have been in control since May.

Heavy fighting has been raging in the area for days as part of the army’s months-long campaign to seize back Zinjibar from the militants.

The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release the information, said there were unconfirmed reports that militants arrived at the school soon after the air strike and killed an unspecified number of wounded troops.

The school is in the Bagdar area, along the frontline between Yemeni forces and militants. On Saturday, fighting in Zinjibar killed at least 28 soldiers and militants.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article510078.ece

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4 militants killed as Army foils infiltration bid in north Kashmir

Oct 02 2011

Srinagar : Four militants were killed as army troops foiled an infiltration bid near the Line of Control in Keran sector of Kupwara district in north Kashmir.

The troops foiled an infiltration bid by militants from across the Line of Control in Keran sector yesterday, triggering a gunbattle that lasted for more than 36 hours

during which four militants were killed, an army spokesman said.

The bodies of all the slain militants have been recovered along with a cache of arms and ammunition, the spokesman said adding there were no casualties among the security forces during the operation.

Militants have stepped up infiltration bids over the past three months as they try to augment the depleting cadres following the killing of several top commanders of Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad during the current year.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/4-militants-killed-as-army-foils-infiltration-bid/854388/

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Disillusioned with Pak, Karzai to strengthen ties with India

Oct 02 2011s

New Delhi : Disillusioned by Pakistan's attitude and its hobnobbing with the Haqqani network, Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai will focus on strengthening ties with India during his visit here starting Tuesday.

Karzai will hold comprehensive talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh after which the two countries are expected to ink a strategic pact to streamline the various assistance programmes of India and institutionalise bilateral security dialogue.

The two sides are also looking at inking some MoUs in the exploration of mineral resources during Karzai's two-day visit.

During the visit, which comes just days after the assassination of Burhanuddin Rabbani, who was heading the peace process in the war-torn country, the two sides are expected to discuss the fragile security situation in Afghanistan and the role of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) in fomenting instability in that country by supporting the Haqqani network.

According to diplomatic sources, the Afghan government's assessment is that it is futile to rely on Pakistan as it is hand-in-glove with the Haqqani group, an outfit that is closely allied with the Taliban, and there is need to have deeper ties in key areas with India.

Afghan officials say they have strong evidence that the assassination of Rabbani was organised by the Taliban leadership based in Quetta, Pakistan, with the help of ISI. However, Pakistani officials have denied their involvement in Rabbani's killing.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/disillusioned-with-pak-karzai-to-strengthen-ties-.../854574/

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Karzai says talks with Taliban useless

Oct 02 2011

Afghan President Hamid Karzai says trying to talk peace with insurgents is futile and that neighbouring Pakistan not the Taliban needs to be the other party in the peace talks.

The President’s remarks came on a video recording that his office released on Saturday.

Mr. Karzai has been pushing for years to reconcile with the Taliban.

He says that effort is no longer viable since a suicide bomber claiming to be a peace emissary from the Taliban killed former Afghan President Burhanuddin Rabbani at his home on September 20. Rabbani was leading Mr. Karzai’s effort to broker peace with the Taliban.

Mr. Karzai says the only way forward is for Afghanistan to negotiate with Pakistan.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article2503713.ece

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Washington puts Americans worldwide on alert against al-Qaida retaliation

Oct 03 2011

The state department issued a worldwide travel alert on Saturday warning of the possibility of anti-American attacks in response to the killing of two top al-Qaida members. The warning came a day after US officials said Anwar al-Awlaki, identified as chief of external operations for al-Qaidas Yemen branch, was killed in an attack by missiles fired from multiple CIA drones in Yemen. The death of Awlaki, in the near term, could provide motivation for anti-American attacks worldwide from individuals or groups seeking to retaliate against US citizens or interests because of this action, the state department said. The drone strike also killed Samir Khan, an American who served as editor of a glossy magazine used as a propaganda and recruitment tool by al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

Times of India

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Israeli wins right to no religion

Oct 03 2011

Jerusalem: An Israeli writer has won a historic court victory granting his request to be officially registered as without religion rather than Jewish, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported on Sunday.

Yoram Kaniuk turned to the courts in May after the interior ministry refused to alter his official religious status from Jewish to without religion, Haaretz said.

And last week, a Tel Aviv court sided with his demand, ruling that Israeli law allows citizens to be officially registered as having no religion.

Freedom from religion is a freedom derived from the right to human dignity, which is protected by the Basic Law on Human Dignity and Freedom, Haaretz quoted the ruling as saying.

Kaniuk called the courts decision a ruling of historic proportions. I can be without religion but Jewish by nationality. I am so thrilled, he said.

That has raised the ire of secular groups who have petitioned the interior ministry for years to replace the Jewish ethnicity label with an Israeli one.

Times of India

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Afghanistan urges Pakistan to take steps for peace

Oct 02 2011

KABUL: The Afghan government says it needs to see Pakistan make “tangible progress” on pledges to use its influence to help end the Taliban insurgency.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Janan Mosazai told reporters in Kabul on Sunday that although Pakistan had said it would work to get Taliban leaders to the negotiating table, this has not happened.

“Afghanistan has invested a great amount of goodwill and political capital to create an atmosphere of trust and confidence and to try to improve relations with Pakistan over the past three years,” Mosazai, told reporters in Kabul.

“Unfortunately, we have not been witness to the type of concrete progress that we were expecting – that was promised to us by our brothers and sisters in Pakistan,” he added.

A series of meetings between Afghanistan, Pakistan and the United States has been suspended because of the fallout.

Mosazai’s remarks come a day after President Hamid Karzai said he has given up trying to talk to the Taliban directly and that the key to ending the war is mediation by Pakistan.

Karzai is reviewing his strategy for making peace with the Taliban and will reveal the next steps “very soon,” Siamak Herawi, a spokesman for Karzai also said Sunday.

“All peace talks with the Taliban are suspended. The president will review the peace and reconciliation strategy,” Herawi told AFP.

The spokesman said Karzai was expected to announce a new strategy for peace efforts in a televised address “very soon.”

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/02/afghanistan-urges-pakistan-to-take-steps-for-peace.html

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Yousuf Raza Gilani urges Kabul to stop blame game over Rabbani’s murder

Oct 02 2011

MULTAN: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has called upon Afghan President Hamid Karzai to end misconceptions about Pakistan.

Mr Karzai should not suspect Pakistan over the killing of former Afghan president Burhanuddin Rabbani, Mr Gilani said at a public meeting in Billiwala after laying the foundation of the Multan-Khanewal section of the Multan-Faisalabad motorway on Saturday.

He said that Pakistan would cooperate with Afghanistan in all matters, including security issues, because “our intentions are beyond doubt in pursuing peace in the region”.

He said the All Parties’ Conference had united the nation, forcing the US to acknowledge it could not fight terrorism without Pakistan.

He said the APC was called to consult those political parties that had boycotted elections.

“Although we want peace, we will not compromise on any challenge to the sovereignty of Pakistan and dialogue with the US will be held on the basis of equality and mutual respect,” he said.

The prime minister said the government had faced the world boldly at every platform and did not compromise on national interests.He said that terrorism was not in the country’s interest and the government was ready for dialogue with the world

for the sake of peace.

“We will not allow anyone to interfere in our matters and only those steps will be taken that will be in the favour of Pakistan,” he said.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/02/gilani-urges-kabul-to-stop-blame-game-over-rabbanis-murder.html

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Libya conflict: Hundreds of residents flee Sirte

Oct 02 2011

Streams of civilians are fleeing the besieged Libyan city of Sirte amid fierce fighting over the home town of ousted leader Muammar Gaddafi.

Hundreds of residents, in vehicles packed with belongings, are queuing at checkpoints leading out of the city.

Forces loyal to the transitional authorities are slowly pushing back pro-Gaddafi fighters.

Meanwhile, an International Red Cross team has been into Sirte and says there is an urgent need for medical aid.

They said fighting had continued despite the suggestion of a two-day ceasefire by the National Transitional Council (NTC) to allow civilians to leave.

Two children and their parents were reportedly killed by machine-gun fire as they tried to leave on Saturday. It is unclear who killed them.

War-wounded kits

Scores of cars, buses and trucks piled high with household goods were lined up at NTC checkpoints on the outskirts of Sirte on Sunday.

The fleeing residents said the situation in the city had deteriorated to such an extent that there was little food and no water or electricity.

"We couldn't leave our homes because of the shelling; we had to leave the city," Ahmed Hussein, travelling with his wife, mother-in-law and two children, told the AP.

Another man, Ali, said he and his family were leaving because "we are caught between Nato bombings and shelling by rebels".

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15141177

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Libyan fighters seal off Qadhafi’s hometown

Oct 02 2011

A Libyan commander says revolutionary forces have completely surrounded Muammar Qadhafi’s hometown of Sirte and are engaged in heavy fighting on the city’s streets.

Mustafa al-Rubai says fighters from eastern Libya seized control of Sirte’s first residential district and a hotel where Col. Qadhafi’s snipers were based.

Mr. al-Rubai told The Associated Press on Saturday that even though the fighters have surrounded Sirte from all sides, a path out has been left for civilians who still want to leave the coastal city.

Libyan fighters say that after weeks of fighting Col. Qadhafi’s loyalists inside Sirte, they now hold positions about 5 km from the city centre.

The Libyan Defence Ministry has said the fighters also seized the Sirte port, military base and airport last week.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article2503650.ece

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Yousuf Raza Gilani claims 'victory' in stand-off with US

Oct 02 2011

Islamabad : Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has claimed "victory" in the recent stand-off with the US, saying he has received a message from Washington that America needs Pakistan's support to win the war on terror.

Gilani made the remarks while addressing a gathering in Bili Wala near his hometown of Multan in Punjab province yesterday, amidst tensions between Islamabad and Washington over ISI-Haqqani network links.

"It is due to the all parties' conference as well as the unity of Pakistan's political leaders that the US has sent a message that they need Pakistan and that they cannot win the war (against terrorism) without Pakistan," he said.

"They have also distanced themselves from the statement of (former US military chief Admiral Mike) Mullen. This is the victory of the Pakistani nation, political parties and the government's policy of reconciliation," he said.

He did not say when the message was conveyed to Pakistan.

The successful holding of the meeting of all political parties on Thursday was testimony to the fact that the people are united on the issue of Pakistan's security and defence, he remarked.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/gilani-claims-victory-in-standoff-with-us/854605/

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US using Pakistan as scapegoat for failure in Afghanistan: Pervez Musharraf

Oct 02 2011

Islamabad : Former military ruler Pervez Musharraf has accused the United States of using Pakistan as a scapegoat for its failure in Afghanistan.

In an exclusive video link interview with Express 24/7, Musharraf also said that Pakistani forces should use whatever influence they have and tell the Haqqanis not to cross the border.

He also said that the US was responsible for controlling Haqqani activities on the Afghan side of the border.

Former US Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee chairman Admiral Mike Mullen had caused a diplomatic storm by saying at a recent Senate hearing that the Haqqani network of terrorists was “a veritable arm” of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and that the Pakistani intelligence agency had directed the militant group’s recent attacks at US installations in Kabul.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/us-using-pakistan-as-scapegoat-for-failure-in-afghanistan-musharraf/854579/

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Pak counter-terror measures not effective: Obama to Cong

Oct 02 2011

Washington : Pakistan's counter-terrorism measures have failed to yield results this year with insurgent activities gaining ground and operational situation facing the military there continuing to deteriorate, US President Barack Obama has informed the Congress.

"The return of militant-inspired violence after a 4-month lull following the 2010 floods demonstrated how insurgent elements have managed to survive and even return to many areas previously cleared by the Pakistan military," a White House report sent by Obama to the Congress said.

In fact, the report informs the Congress that Pakistan has moved from "remaining static" to "decline" to "negative trends" in one of the key indicators and metrics of "Pakistan's efforts in counter-terrorism operations" as developed by the Obama administration at the direction of the Congress.

The 25-page unclassified section of the Af-Pak report was submitted by Obama to the Congress on Friday which gives details of the progress made in Afghanistan and Pakistan in the war against terrorism from January to August this year.

A copy of the report was obtained by the Press Trust of India.

Informing the Congress on the progress on fourth metric -- 'Develop Pakistan's counter-insurgency (COIN) capabilities; continue to support Pakistan's efforts to defeat terrorist and insurgent groups', the White House report said indicators and metrics against this objective remained static during the reporting period of January 1 to March 31.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pak-counterterror-measures-not-effective-obama-to-cong/854573/

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Pak- born LeT militant arrested in Valley

By Naseer Ganai

Oct 03 2011

THE army arrested a Lashkar- e- Tayyeba ( LeT) militant on Friday from Kupwara’s Machil sector while he was trying to infiltrate into India from Pakistan.

A Srinagar- based defence spokesperson said the militant had been identified as Nissar Ahmed and hails from Karachi.

An AK- 47 rifle and a cache of other weapons were seized from him.

“ Nissar told interrogators he was trained at an LeT facility in Pakistan’s Manshera and was part of a group of 12 terrorists who had been trained to use all types of weapons, including explosives, and navigation and communication equipment, by people from the Pakistan army and the ISI,” he said.

“ He also said that after the initial training, the group was transported to another LeT training camp and then moved to another site near the Kel military garrison, opposite the Machil sector, where intensive training was provided in the use of weapons and explosives,” the spokesman added.

The militant confirmed that seven members of the group under the chief, Abu Talha, were selected for infiltration into Kashmir through Machil.

“ The militants were intercepted by the Indian Army while crossing the border. Firing ensued and Nissar fell into a drain during the confrontation. He surrendered after he was cornered,” the spokesperson added.

Lt- Gen S. A. Hasnain, GOC Chinar Corps, said the incident had “ exposed the nexus between Pakistan’s ISI, army and terrorist ( groups) in the training, arming and psychological indoctrination of Pakistani youth for infiltrating and carrying out acts of terror in Kashmir”.

Mail Today

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Militant says got training from Pak army, ISI

Oct 03 2011

Srinagar : The arrest of a Pakistani militant on the Line of Control in Kupwara has exposed the role of the Pakistani army and ISI in spreading terror in Kashmir, the Army’s top commander in the Valley Lt Gen S Atta Hasnain said on Sunday.

The militant, Nisar Ahmad, a resident of Karachi, has reportedly confessed that he received training at a Lashkar-e-Toiba facility at Mansehra from members of the Pakistan Army and the ISI, headed by Abdullah Shaheen.

Captured while trying to cross the Line of Control along with seven other alleged Lashkar members —during an encounter that lasted five days — Ahmad has reportedly revealed that after training, they were shifted to a Lashkar camp at Jamgrah and finally to the Kel Military Garrison in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir.

The garrison is located right opposite the Machil sector on the border, from where the militants tried to get in. Again, just before they left for the border, he and his group were given a briefing by members of the Pakistani army and ISI, Ahmad told the Army.

“The arrest of this Pakistan national and Lashkar militant has exposed the nexus between the ISI, Pakistan Army and terrorist outfits in training, arming and psychological indoctrination of Pakistani youth for infiltrating and carrying out acts of terror in Kashmir,” Lt Gen Hasnain, the General Officer Commanding (GOC), 15 Corps, said at Trehgam in Kupwara.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/militant-says-got-training-from-pak-army-isi/854894/

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CIA man who sparked row in Pak held in US for spat

Oct 03 2011

Highlands Ranch (Colorado ): A CIA contractor freed by Pakistani authorities after the families of two men he killed in a shootout agreed to accept a $2.34 million blood money payment was charged after authorities said he got into a fight over a shopping centre parking spot.

Deputies responding to an altercation between two men outside an Einstein Bagel in Highlands Ranch, south of Denver, took Raymond Davis into custody on Saturday, said Sheriff Lt Glenn Peitzmeier.

He was charged with third degree assault and disorderly conduct.

Further details on his arrest were not immediately available.

Peitzmeier said the victim, who was not identified, refused medical treatment at the scene. Davis was freed from jail after posting bond, Peitzmeier said.

In January, Davis said he shot two Pakistani men who tried to rob him in Lahore.

The agreement, nearly seven weeks after the shootings, ended the dispute that had strained ties between the US and Pakistan.

Times of India

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Saudi bomb maker killed with Awlaki

Oct 03 2011

Cairo: A Saudi militant believed killed in the US drone strike in Yemen constructed the bombs for the al-Qaida branchs most notorious attempted attacks including the underwear-borne explosives intended to a down a US aircraft, and a bomb carried by his own brother intended to assassinate a Saudi prince.

The death of Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri would make the Friday drone strikes on a convoy in the central deserts of Yemen one of the most effective single blows in the US campaign to take out al-Qaidas top figures.

The strike also killed Anwar al-Awlaki, a Yemeni-American cleric who had been key to recruiting for the militant group and a Pakistani-American, Samir Khan, who was a top English-language propagandist.

But Christopher Boucek,a scholar who studies Yemen and al-Qaida, said al-Asiris death would overshadow that of the two Americans due to his operational importance to al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, the Yemen based group that is considered the most active branch of the terror network.

Late Friday, two US officials said intelligence indicated al-Asiri was among those killed in the strike. Al-Asiris death has not officially been confirmed.

Times of India

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Told to go despite Awlaki’s killing, Saleh minister cries betrayal by US

Oct 03 2011

Sanaa : The US showed a lack of respect for democracy and its partners in fighting terrorism by renewing its call for Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step down, a Yemeni official said Saturday.

Washington asked Saleh to resign on the day it announced that a CIA drone strike had killed Anwar al-Awlaki in Yemen’s northern al-Jawf province.

Yemeni sources said they had located Awlaki with intelligence gathered from a captured al Qaeda operative.

On Friday, the White House said Awlaki’s killing had not altered its demand that Saleh sign a plan under which he would hand over power. “After this big victory in catching Awlaki, the White House calls on the president to leave power immediately? The Americans don’t even respect those who cooperate with them,” Deputy Information Minister Abdu al-Janadi. “Saleh is an elected president...They called on us to be partners in the fight against terrorism. The president suffered a great deal for the war on terror. From their position, it seems they don’t respect democracy.”

Father to receive Awlaki’s remains

Janadi said Awlaki’s remains would be picked up by his father. “It is not a corpse, he is in pieces... The government won’t interfere with any type of final rites,” he said.

“We haven’t decided yet whether to have a mourning ceremony or not,” a friend of the Awlaki family said.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/told-to-go-despite-awlakis-killing-saleh-minister-cries-betrayal-by-us/854772/

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Kishanganga Project: Pak yet to win, India positive but reluctant to assert

Oct 03 2011

New Delhi : The International Court of Arbitration’s interim stay against India doing any permanent construction over Kishanganga riverbed does not make any material difference to the country given the fact that the schedule of construction activities submitted to the Court by India does not envisage permanent construction above the riverbed before mid-2013.

However, the decision, casting a shadow over India’s case against Pakistan in the dispute over 330 MW Kishanganga hydro-electric project in Jammu and Kashmir, has surprised experts who have worked on inter-state water disputes in the country.

With the final verdict likely to be announced by the end of 2012 or early 2013, the stay does not derail Indian plans.

“Principles of international law are applied while adjudicating the federal water disputes in India or the US. But, so far, no Inter-state Water Disputes Tribunal in India or Supreme Court in the US has restrained any state from constructing a dam by an interim order,” says Supreme Court Advocate Mohan Katarki. expressing his reservations against interim stay. “In fact, the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal in 1991 declined to restrain Karnataka from constructing its Hemavathy and Harangi dams,” added Katarki, who has represented Karnataka in Krishna Water Dispute case.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Pak-yet-to-win--India-positive-but-reluctant-to-assert/854801/

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Chinese media puts focus on J&K unmarked graves

Oct 03 2011

Beijing: Chinas state-run Xinhua news agency ran an uncorroborated report that paints a gruesome picture of a burial ground allegedly filled with unmarked graves in Poonch in Jammu & Kashmir.

The report, which carried no official comment from Indian authorities, comes at a time when China is trying to justify its involvement with development projects in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

Quoting local sources, the Xinhua report said bodies, some with severed heads, were mostly brought in for burial by the police. The staterun agencys report is likely to be carried by many Chinese newspapers.

It said the state Human Rights Commission recently asked the government to identify unmarked graves in 38 sites in the northwest of Srinagar city. The Commission has found there are over 2,100 unidentified bodies in the area.

Full report at: Times of India

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Bharatpur: Minority panel blames govt

Oct 03 2011

New Delhi : The inquiry of the National Minority Commission has held the local administration and police department responsible for “over-reacting” and “acting in panic” during the recent communal clashes between Meo Muslims and Gurjjars in Bharatpur district of Rajasthan.

NCM chairperson Wajahat Habibullah told The Indian Express that the initial report of the inquiry team had been finalised and sent to the Rajasthan government. The report had found that the local police had mishandled the situation, over-reacted and fired with an intention to kill, he said. The police had also fired at the local mosque, which inflamed the situation further.

Habibullah, however, conceded that the local administration had been caught off-guard by the violence, especially in view of the fact that both the communities were in talks to settle their dispute peacefully when some miscreants instigated violence.

“Talks were going on between the two communities. They wanted to settle things peacefully, but a few miscreants created trouble. And the police and administration were not prepared. They were not expecting to face such a situation. They over-reacted,” Habibullah said.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Bharatpur--Minority-panel-blames-govt/854757/

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New recruits guard Bhatt’s family

Oct 03 2011

Ahmedabad : Two days after the arrest of suspended DIG Sanjiv Bhatt, his family continued to get two armed guards for security, notwithstanding the fact that the officer had been seeking more security in view of the threat he and his family faced after he gave evidence against Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

His wife has also raised concern about her husband’s security. Some of the guards who came in the duty shifts had been recruited as late as four days back before they were posted at the officer’s house.

Bhatt’s wife, Shweta Bhatt, had written a letter to Director General of Police Chitranjan Singh and Ahmedabad Police Commissioner Sudhir Sinha, saying the security threat to her husband has increased. She had stated that she fears a threat to Bhatt from Gujarat Police.

‘Nothing ever happened about his security issue. He had one security officer with him and after some heated debates on the issue, Ahmedabad police added one more constable to his security, who remains outside the house. He made several requests and after his arrest, I also expressed my concern for his security in the letter I wrote to senior cops. His security threat is increasing day by day,” Shweta said.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/new-recruits-guard-bhatts-family/854901/

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Dreaded militant hit squad Khurasan goes rogue in Pak

Oct 03 2011

Islamabad: A blindfolded man stands on explosives, trembling as he confesses to spying for the CIA in Pakistan. Armed men in black balaclavas slowly back away. Then he is blown up. One of his executioners members of an elite militant hit squad zooms a camera in on his severed head and body parts for a video later distributed in street markets as a warning.

Al-Qaida,the Pakistani Taliban and the Haqqani network picked the most ruthless fighters from their ranks in 2009 to form the Khurasan unit, for a special mission. The Obama administration was escalating drone strikes on militants and something had to be done to stop it.

So the Khurasan were deployed to hunt down and eliminate anyone suspected of helping the Americans or their Pakistani government and military allies.

Full report at: Times of India

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Saba Pataudi royal Wakf boards patron

Oct 03 2011

Bhopal: With Saba Sultan, the daughter of Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi,declared the patron of royal Wakf board of Bhopal, its the first time since independence that a woman has come to be its custodian.

Indeed, initially there were apprehensions over a woman taking over as the Mutawalli Auqaf-e-Shahi (custodian of the Royal Waqf) properties, but these were put to rest with prominent Muslim personalities, including the Qazi of Bhopal, welcoming the move.Saba is the elder daughter of Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi who was the Mutawalli Auqaf-e-Shahi.

Anwar Khan,whose father was an aide-de-camp to the erstwhile nawab, said properties under the Auqaf-e-Shahi are scattered over several places.The valuation of these runs into crores of rupees. One source said it was worth Rs 300 crore, adding that there are several legal battles being fought over property issues.

Times of India

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Indian Army gets its 1st woman jawan

Oct 03 2011

New Delhi: Outperforming her male counterparts in the physical tests,35-year-old Sapper Shanti Tigga joined the 969 Railway Engineer Regiment of the Territorial Army.A mother of two,she is the first woman jawan.

Women are allowed to join the armed forces only as officers in the non-combat units.But Tigga has earned the distinction of being the first lady jawan in the 1.3 million strong defence forces, a senior army officer said.

She performed exceedingly well in all the physical tests.She took five seconds less than her male counterparts to complete 1.5-km run.She completed the 50 meter run in 12 seconds which is rated as excellent, he said.Tigga also impressed her recruiters with her firing skills and was adjudged as the best trainee.

Employed with the railways as points-man posted in West Bengal,Tigga volunteered for the TA last year.I joined railways in 2005 on compensatory ground after my husband passed away.Last year,I learnt about TA railways and I volunteered for it, Tigga said.

Times of India

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US Muslims tried to change Inspire editor via counselling

Oct 02 2011

Charlotte : Samir Khan, a former resident of North Carolina who was killed on Friday in a US strike on Anwar al-Awlaki, had described himself as a “traitor to America” as he promoted a Muslim extremist message to the English-speaking world.

A Saudi-born man of Pakistani heritage, Khan left his family in Charlotte for Yemen in 2009 after years editing a website praising al-Qaeda. “I was quite open about my beliefs online and it didn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that I was al-Qaeda to the core,” Khan wrote in the fall 2010 issue of Inspire. “I’m a traitor to US because my religion requires me to be one.”

Khan’s life in Yemen involved helping produce the irreverent, graphics-heavy Internet magazine aimed at recruiting young Muslims to the jihadi cause with articles such as, “Make a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom.”

Khan cut off ties with his family when he went to Yemen to join the Islamic version of a gang, even though such ideology runs counter to Islam, said Jibril Hough, spokesman for the Islamic Center of Charlotte. Hough said he called Khan’s father in 2008 after Samir’s ideology became known and arranged a counseling session. There were two meetings in Hough’s home involving Khan, his father and some other respected members of the Muslim community, Hough said. Each lasted several hours.

“He was very respectful — kind of quiet. He didn’t give us a big argument. There was a time or two he tried to state his case. He was pretty much respectful of the circle we’d set up, and he listened,” Hough said.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/us-muslims-tried-to-change-inspire-editor-via-counselling/854475/

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Afghanistan Haqqani militant Haji Mali Khan captured

2 October 2011

A senior leader of the militant Haqqani network, Haji Mali Khan, has been captured in Afghanistan, the Nato-led international force Isaf has said.

He was detained during an operation by Afghan and coalition forces in Paktia province on Tuesday, Isaf said.

He was heavily armed but did not resist, it added.

Haji Mali Khan is the senior commander in Afghanistan for the Haqqani network, blamed for some recent Afghan attacks and accused of links to Pakistan.

He is also a revered elder of the clan, the uncle of the network's leader, Siraj Haqqani, and served as an emissary between the Haqqanis and Baitullah Mehsud, the former head of the Pakistani Taliban who was killed in a suspected US missile attack in 2009.

He is accused of setting up bases in Paktia and coordinating the transfer of money for militant operations.

The BBC's Paul Wood in Kabul says Afghan officials describe him as the brain of the network.

The Haqqani are affiliated to the Taliban and have pledged allegiance to their spiritual leader, Mullah Omar. However, some in the West believe the Haqqani also have links to Pakistan's intelligence agency, an accusation Islamabad denies.

Change of focus

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-15136007

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Indonesia: Suspect arrested over Solo church bombing

2 October 2011

Indonesian police say they have arrested a terror suspect wanted in connection with at least two attacks.

Local police chief Lt Col Lufti Martadian said Beni Asri was captured near his parents' house in Solok, West Sumatra province, on Friday.

Ben Asri is suspected of helping to plot a suicide bomb attack on a church in the central Java town of Solo last Sunday that injured at least 20 people.

He is also wanted over a suicide attack on police in West Java last April.

That bombing, during Friday prayers at a mosque in a police compound in Cirebon, injured nearly 30 police officers.

Lt Col Lufti Martadian said Beni Asri was flown to Jakarta for questioning following his arrest, the Associated Press reports.

The 26-year-old was one of four people named by police this week as being wanted on suspicion of helping the suicide bomber attack worshippers as they left the Bethel Injil Sepuluh church in Keputon, Solo, after a service last Sunday.

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said, in the aftermath of the attack, that initial investigations indicated the bomber was a member of the same terror group which carried out a suicide attack at the mosque in Cirebon.

Beni Asri was one of five people already being sought by police in connection with the Cirebon attack.

Indonesia is the world's most populous Muslim country but is officially a secular state.

Militant Islamist groups have carried out a number of deadly attacks in Indonesia in recent years.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-15141173

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US says Palestinians must be willing to negotiate

Oct 2, 2011

WASHINGTON: Holding a strong view that there would be no change in ground realities in the Middle East even if the UN passed a resolution backing a Palestinian state, the US has said the Palestinians must be willing to negotiate with the Israelis to achieve their goal.

"If the United Nations passes a resolution which says we want to see Palestinians become a state and may be we upgrade their status or may be we recognise them, the next day nothing changes in Ramallah, and I want things to change," secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in an interview to Al-Hayat TV of Egypt.

"I want the Palestinians to have their own state; I want them to govern themselves; I want them to continue developing economically to be a real example, to work with Egypt for the betterment of people in the region, and we know that won't happen," she said in response to a question.

So, what the US has said is "very straightforward", she said. "We want to see both sides back at the table, and we criticise and make absolutely clear we don't want to see provocative actions.

"We've said that about the recent announcements from the Israeli Government, but we also know that the Palestinians have to be willing to negotiate."

"It's hard for them because they feel like they've been at this for a while and nothing has happened. Both sides have their case to be made. Make it at the negotiating table. And that's what we're pushing for," Clinton said.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/US-says-Palestinians-must-be-willing-to-negotiate/articleshow/10204266.cms

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Palestinian bid for statehood at UN doomed to fail: Iran

Oct 02 2011

Tehran : Iran's supreme leader assailed a two state solution for Israel and the Palestinians on Saturday, saying the Palestinian bid for statehood at the United Nations is doomed to fail.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said the Palestinians should not limit themselves to seeking a country based on the pre-1967 borders, which would implicitly recognize Israel, because ''all land belongs to Palestinians.''

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has asked the U.N. Security Council to recognize an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza Strip, areas captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war.

Israel and the U.S. oppose the U.N. bid, saying there is no substitute for direct negotiations. But with Israel continuing to build settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem, Abbas says there is no point in talking.

Iran doesn't recognize Israel and considers it an archenemy.

Khamenei, who spoke at a pro-Palestinian conference in Tehran, once again called Israel a ''cancerous tumor'' that should be removed.

Iran supports the militant Palestinian Hamas group, which rules Gaza and which does not back the statehood bid pushed by Abbas and his Western-backed Fatah.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/palestinian-bid-for-statehood-at-un-doomed-to-fail-iran/854361/

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Iraq civilian deaths in Sept second lowest this year

Oct 2, 2011

BAGHDAD: The number of civilians killed by violence in Iraq dropped to 110 in September from 155 in August, the second lowest toll so far for 2011, according to health ministry figures released late on Saturday.

In May this year 102 civilians were reported killed, the lowest figure so far in 2011.

Violence has dropped sharply since the height of Iraq’s sectarian conflict in 2006-2007, but killings and attacks still happen almost daily as US troops prepare to withdraw more than eight years after the invasion that ousted Saddam Hussein.

The number of Iraqi police killed declined to 42 in September from 45 in August, while 33 soldiers were killed in September, down from 39 the previous month, according to figures from the interior and defense ministries.

The ministries said 132 civilians, 105 police officers and 82 soldiers were wounded in September attacks.

On Friday, at least 18 people were killed and 63 wounded when a large car bomb exploded among mourners crowding into a Shiite funeral in the city of Hilla south of Baghdad.

On September 12, gunmen killed 22 Shiite pilgrims in an ambush in the west Sunni heartland province of Anbar.

Two days later a car bomb targeting a popular restaurant killed 15 people and wounded 46 more in the southern Shiite city of Hamza south of Baghdad.

As US troops pack up to leave, Iraqi officials say local armed forces are capable of containing Sunni Islamist insurgents tied to Al-Qaeda and radical Shiite militias. But the government is debating whether some US troops should stay on as trainers past the 2011 withdrawal.

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article510068.ece

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Awlaki death may trigger anti-US attacks worldwide: State Dept

Oct 2, 2011

WASHINGTON: Al-Qaida's top spiritual leader Anwar al-Awlaki's killing in a drone strike in Yemen could provide motivation for anti-American attacks globally by those seeking to avenge his death, the State Department has said, issuing a worldwide travel alert for its citizens.

"The Department of State alerts US citizens to the potential for retaliation against US citizens and interests following the deaths of key figures in the terrorist group al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula on September 30," it said in an official statement said.

The statement came yesterday, a day after Awlaki, a US-Yemeni citizen who was external operations' leader of al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), was killed in Yemen along with the outfit's propagandist Samir Khan.

The death of Awlaki, in the near term, could provide motivation for anti-American attacks worldwide from individuals or groups seeking to retaliate against US citizens or interests because of this action, the State Department said.

In the past, Awlaki and other members of AQPA have called for attacks against the United States and American citizens and interests, it said.

Awlaki's standing as a preeminent English-language advocate of violence could potentially trigger anti-American acts worldwide to avenge his death, the State Department said.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Awlaki-death-may-trigger-anti-US-attacks-worldwide-State-Dept/articleshow/10204313.cms

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Two-yr hunt for Anwar al-Awlaki who left no trail

Oct 02 2011

Washington : Anwar al-Awlaki did not leave much of a trail, frustrating the American and Yemeni intelligence officials pursuing him over the last two years.

They believed they had finally found him in a village in Yemen last year. Commandos surrounded the hamlet, but he slipped away. In May, he was targeted in a drone attack, but it narrowly missed him.

The search for al-Awlaki, the US-born cleric whose sermons made him a larger-than-life figure in the world of jihad, ended on Friday. After days of surveillance, armed drones operated by the CIA took off from a new, secret American base in the Arabian Peninsula, crossed into Yemen and unleashed a barrage of Hellfire missiles at a car carrying him and other top operatives from al-Qaeda’s branch in Yemen, including another American who had run the group’s English-language magazine.

The strike was the culmination of a desperate manhunt marked not only by near misses and dead ends, but also by a wrenching legal debate in Washington about the legality — and morality — of putting an American citizen on a list of top militants marked for death.

The drone strike was the first CIA strike in Yemen since 2002 — there have been others since then by the military’s Special Operations forces — and was part of an effort to duplicate in Yemen the covert war it has been running in Pakistan. Friday’s operation was the first time the agency had carried out a deadly strike from a new base in the region. The agency began constructing the base this year, officials said, when it became apparent to intelligence and counterterrorism officials that the threat from al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Yemen had eclipsed that coming from its core group of operatives hiding in Pakistan.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/twoyr-hunt-for-man-who-left-no-trail/854467/

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Syria warns U.S. envoy against meddling

Oct 02 2011

U.S. Ambassador Robert Ford should stop meddling in Syrian affairs if he wants to avoid more “rotten eggs” attacks in the future, a state-run Syrian newspaper warned on Sunday.

The Al Baath newspaper, a mouthpiece of the Syrian regime, accused Mr. Ford of supporting armed anti-government groups in Syria and said his meddling will not be tolerated.

Supporters of President Bashar Assad on Thursday pelted Mr. Ford, an outspoken critic of the Syrian regime’s brutal crackdown on the country’s six-month-old uprising with eggs as he visited a prominent Syrian opposition figure in Damascus. He was trapped in the office for about three hours by the hostile pro-government protesters outside until Syrian security forces arrived to escort him out.

“If you want to avoid rotten eggs, you should advise your country to stop its blatant interference in Syrian affairs and its feverish efforts to seek sanctions against Syria from the U.N. Security Council,” the newspaper said.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and the White House said the assault was part of a campaign to intimidate diplomats looking into the Assad’s government’s brutal repression of pro-reform demonstrators. The Obama administration summoned Syria’s Ambassador in Washington to hear formal U.S. condemnation of the assault.

In comments posted on the embassy’s Facebook page, Mr. Ford said Thursday’s attack was not limited to eggs and tomatoes.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article2506344.ece

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Syria unrest: Troops 'control rebel town of Rastan'

2 October 2011

Syrian forces have regained control of the central town of Rastan after days of fighting with defectors who had joined protesters, state media say.

Earlier, human rights activists said troops had taken much of the town after the defectors had pulled out of the town in restive Homs province.

Dozens of tanks and armoured vehicles had entered, reports say.

Meanwhile, opposition members have met in Turkey to forge a united front against President Bashar al-Assad.

The Syrian National Council, a group created this year, have begun a two-day meeting to elect a leadership.

A fresh wave of protests erupted after prayers on Friday in cities across Syria, leaving at least 18 people - protesters and troops - dead, activists said.

'Heavy gunfire'

"Calm and security have returned to Rastan after security police backed by army units entered the town and confronted the terrorist groups who have terrified its inhabitants," the official news agency Sana said, quoted by Reuters.

Rami Abdel-Rahman, head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said that after five days of fighting, Rastan, 180km (120 miles) north of Damascus, was now mostly under control of government forces.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-15137784

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Aga Khan an Spiritual Leader ordered to pay $80m to ex-wife

Oct 2, 2011

PARIS: The French press is calling it the most expensive divorce settlement in the country's history: A court has ordered the Aga Khan to pay his ex-wife $80 million.

That's in the ballpark of what Madonna paid Guy Ritchie when their marriage ended. The diva reportedly shelled out between $76 million and $92 million.

The Aga Khan, who is a billionaire and spiritual leader to 20 million Muslims, married Gabriele Thyssen, a German princess, in 1998. They divorced several years later after having a son.

Le Point magazine reported that on Thursday a French court of appeals ordered the Aga Khan to hand over 60 million euros after determining that he was exclusively at fault, overturning a lower court that blamed both parties and awarded a mere 12 million euros.

The Aga Khan, through his foundation, is known for his work in eliminating poverty, advancement of women and the promotion of Islamic art and architecture.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/Aga-Khan-ordered-to-pay-80m-to-ex-wife/articleshow/10200595.cms

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Egypt military proposes schedule for leaving power

Oct 2, 2011

CAIRO: Egypt's military rulers on Saturday floated a timetable for their exit from power under which presidential elections could be held by late next year.

The proposal is not binding but is the closest thing to a schedule for a return to civilian rule after growing criticism of the generals' management of Egypt's turbulent post-uprising transition period.

The chief of Staff, Lt. Gen. Sami Anan, discussed the plan with a with a number of political parties that had threatened to boycott parliamentary elections scheduled to start in late November if their demands for an amended election law went unheeded.

There have been growing calls from activists and political parties for the generals to set a clear timetable for an end to military rule, which began with Hosni Mubarak's February ouster in an 18-day popular uprising that shook the Arab world.

Over the nearly eight months since the generals took control, activists have accused the military of following many of the same hated practices of the Mubarak regime, including the physical abuse of detainees and making key decisions on its own.

The military council also failed to meet its initial pledge to return the country to civilian rule within six months and, along the way, shed the much-hated Mubarak-era emergency laws blamed for rampant human rights abuses under the old regime.

According to the state news agency MENA, Anan said the military council is not "seeking to prolong the transitional period. It is committed to a clear and precise timetable to transfer power after the election of a president."

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Egypt-military-proposes-schedule-for-leaving-power/articleshow/10201899.cms

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No takers for Mahatma’s khadi spinning course at Aga Khan Palace

Oct 02 2011

Pune : More than 20 handlooms and 30 charkhas wear a forlorn look as they lie unused at the Aga Khan Palace. It was in May, 1988, that the project to impart free training to women on khadi spinning and weaving was launched. But today there are no takers for it. In the last three years, the Kasturba Mahila Khadi Gram Udyog Vidyalaya, Pune, has not received a single application from anyone desirous of learning this craft.

The programme which started at the Aga Khan Palace campus trained more than 35 women per year. There were times when applications far outnumbered the seats. While most of them were women working with different NGOs around the country, preference was given to those who would practise the skill as a mode of income. The year long course would start in June and continue till March after which the trained women were given certificates from the central government and Khadi Gram Udyog Vidyalaya.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/no-takers-for-mahatmas-khadi-spinning-course-at-aga-khan-palace/854522/

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Under Mayawati, Muslims fare worse than dalits in education

Oct 2, 2011

NEW DELHI: Mayawati may have demanded reservation for the Muslims in proportion to their population, but the community has little to cheer about during her five years' rule in Uttar Pradesh.

An analysis of Muslims' share in employment and education shows how since 2007 the Muslims have fared worse than dalits in UP on the education front. Demolishing the tall claims of the minority concentration districts' programme to smithereens, the study shows that per capita consumption expenditure of the Muslims was the least (Rs 781 against Rs 948 for upper caste Hindus, Rs 846 for Hindu OBCs and Rs 808 for Hindu SCs), where the community's population is above 40%. Economist Abusaleh Shariiff, who conducted the study, has called for revoking the programme.

"We want money from the HRD ministry for the development of education opportunities for our children, not from the ministry of minority affairs. The minority concentration districts programme should be closed down," Shariff said.

Shariff is the chief economist of the National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER), and was member secretary of the Sachar Committee that was formed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2005 to look into the social, economic and educational status of Indian Muslims. He presented his findings at the Institute of Objective Studies on Saturday.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Under-Mayawati-Muslims-fare-worse-than-dalits-in-education/articleshow/10200823.cms

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Bhatt goes to jail, wife sees threat to his life

Oct 02 2011

Ahmedabad : Suspended Gujarat police officer Sanjiv Bhatt was today sent to Sabarmati Jail, the prison where he had once been superintendent, after a city court rejected the police’s plea for a seven-day remand.

Earlier in the day, Bhatt was taken from Ghatlodia police station to the office of the Crime Branch, prompting his wife Shweta to write to the police chiefs of Gujarat and Ahmedabad that she feared for his life because the Crime Branch “is directly under the control of the chief minister”, and has a “notorious reputation for carrying out fake encounters”.

Bhatt has alleged Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s complicity in the 2002 riots. He was arrested yesterday after Constable K D Pant alleged that Bhatt had forced him to give false testimony before the amicus curiae appointed by the Supreme Court.

The police today searched Bhatt’s home and took away the hard disk of his computer. They also added the more stringent Sec. 194 IPC to the charges under Sections 195, 189 and 342. Sec. 194, like 195, deals with fabricating evidence with intent to procure conviction, but denies bail to the accused and provides for the death penalty if an innocent person is convicted on the basis of this evidence.

In Delhi, activists Harsh Mander and Teesta Setalvad alleged that Bhatt’s arrest was part of a larger move to harass witnesses and whistleblowers seeking justice for riot victims.

“We have a duty through the levers of the law and public opinion to ensure that whistleblowers are not pressured and put down,” said Mander, who is also a member of the National Advisory Council.

Setalvad said, “What about the safety of witnesses and survivor-victims, if this is how Bhatt is being targeted? This is part of a larger programme in place for 10 years now, to ensure that there is no one left to question what happened in February-March 2002.”

Advocates Prashant Bhushan and Aparna Bhat were also present at the press conference.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/bhatt-goes-to-jail-wife-sees-threat-to-.../854514/

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Vendetta is core to Modi powerplay

By D. P. Bhattacharya

Oct 02 2011

Bhatt remanded in judicial custody and charged with fabricating proof

AFIRM court order and a determined Shweta Bhatt delayed the Gujarat government’s aggressive pursuit of IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt — the man who has openly challenged the might of the chief minister — on Saturday.

Shweta, Sanjiv’s wife, dared about 30-35 police officers on Saturday when they came to search her Ahmedabad house. The police had raided Bhatt’s house on Friday evening too, after arresting him.

Shweta told reporters that the cops did not have a fresh search warrant but they still searched the house and confiscated Bhatt’s computer.

The police also failed to get Bhatt’s custody when a local court rejected their plea for police remand and sent the IPS officer to judicial custody, instead. The police have now added Section 194 IPC (fabricating evidence) to the chargesheet against Bhatt, which is punishable with imprisonment of up to ten years or life term. Bhatt’s lawyer I.S. Saiyed said they will move a bail plea on Monday.

The way in which the state government had been pursuing Bhatt, ever since he came out openly with allegations against Modi of abetting the rioters and raised questions over the impartiality of the Supreme Court-appointed SIT in the 2002 riots probe, clearly smacks of vindictiveness which has become a trade mark of Narendra Modi’s chief ministership.

Bhatt’s is not a case in isolation, as similar vendetta had been unleashed by the state government against senior IPS officers for either exposing the government or refusing to toe the official line.

Full report at: Mail Today

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‘Gujarat CM said kill proof & save pandya killers ’

By Gyanant Singh

Oct 02 2011

IN WHAT smacks of vindictiveness on part of the Narendra Modi government, Gujarat IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt was arrested days after he filed an affidavit before the Gujarat High Court alleging involvement of the state machinery in the politically- sensitive murder of Haren Pandya.

Earlier, Bhatt had filed affidavits before the Supreme Court alleging involvement of Modi in the post- Godhra riots and raising questions on the impartiality of the Special Investigation Team ( SIT) probing the 2002 riot cases.

In his latest affidavit filed before the high court on September 27, Bhatt said he had come across documentary evidence in 2003, regarding the role of certain highly- placed politicians and senior police officers in the killing of Pandya.

Bhatt, who was posted as the Superintendent of Police incharge of the Sabarmati Central Prison at the time, claimed that he had immediately forwarded the documents to the home department for appropriate action. Amit Shah, then minister of state for home, had, however, called him to express displeasure over the report and documents, he claimed.

The IPS officer, who had approached the HC against a state government U- turn in a case in which he faced charges of killing a person while being posted as a DSP in Jamnagar in 1990, had filed the affidavit to show that he was being targeted for not toeing the government line.

Full report at: Mail Today

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/mahatma-gandhi-s-non-violence-helped-topple-tyrannical-regimes--ban-ki-moon/d/5606


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