CBI widens investigation on Chidambaram, Catalonia declares independence from Spain: Top stories
Lawmakers in the Catalan regional parliament voted to unilaterally declare Catalonia independence from Spain, Madrid dismisses it, National Archives released nearly 2,900 of the 3,100 previously unseen documents related to Assassination of John F. Kennedy, Chinese President Xi Jinping has begun his second five-year term.india Updated: Oct 28, 2017 08:17 IST
CBI, ED widen investigation against Karti, will probe more decisions by Chidambaram
Federal investigation agencies will examine at least six more foreign investment approvals given by former finance minister P Chidambaram, as part of their probe against his son, Karti, who is accused of benefiting from his father’s decisions. The Central Bureau of Investigation and the Enforcement Directorate will also question officials who were part of the then Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) which recommended those proposals, sources at the agencies told Hindustan Times. Karti, 45, is accused of receiving bribes from companies that benefitted from his father’s decisions. Chidambaram, 72, and Karti deny any wrongdoing. Read the story here.
Catalonia declares independence from Spain, direct Madrid rule looms
In one of the most momentous days in recent Spanish history, lawmakers in the Catalan regional parliament voted to unilaterally declare independence on Friday, prompting the government to immediately adopt special constitutional powers to stop the region’s attempt to secede. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s conservative government called an emergency Cabinet meeting and was expected to use its new powers to immediately dismiss the Catalan regional government and dissolve its parliament in Barcelona, then call an early election in the prosperous northeastern region. With its new powers, the government in Madrid could also seize control of the Catalan police force and the region’s publicly-owned media outlets. Read the story here.
Gujarat CM demands Ahmed Patel’s resignation for ‘recruiting terrorist’
Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani on Friday demanded the resignation of Congress Rajya Sabha MP Ahmed Patel two days after one of the two alleged ISIS sympathisers arrested by the state ATS was learnt to be an employee of a hospital in Bharuch that Patel was associated with. Patel denied the allegation and asked the Gujarat government not to politicise matters of national security for elections, the Asian News International quoted him as saying. Mohmamad Kasis Stimberwala and Ubed Ahmed Mirza, reportedly a lawyer, were arrested on Wednesday and booked for criminal conspiracy, waging or attempt to wage war against the government of India and other charges. Read the story here.
India supports connectivity, but it has to be open and equitable: MEA on OBOR
India said on Friday that it hoped the direction and the policy set by the Communist Party Congress in China will further promote Sino-Indian relations and contribute to peace and stability in the region. The remarks by external affairs ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar came in response to a query on Chinese President Xi Jinping starting his second five-year term and ordering the country’s Army to intensify its combat readiness by focusing on how to win wars during the Congress of the Communist party. On China’s offer for India to join its ‘One Belt One Road’ (OBOR) initiative, which includes the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), Kumar said India’s position on the issue is well-known. Though India supports connectivity, it has to be open and equitable, he said. Read the story here.
Delhi airport’s T2 will get its first flight today, GoAir begins ops
Delhi airport’s Terminal 2 will begin operations on Saturday, taking some pressure off the crowded Terminal 1. GoAir will be the first airline to shift operations to T2 from Saturday night. Flight G8-148 from Ranchi will be the first to land at the terminal at 10.05pm Saturday while G8-207 leaving for Lucknow at 5.25am Sunday will be the first to depart. T1 and T3 put together have capacity to handle 62 million passengers a year. The airport handled 55.6 million passengers in 2016 and the number is expected to rise this year. Against an average of 1,050 flight movements a day in 2015, the number has risen to 1,185. Read the story here.
Dalit entrepreneurs get their own business magazine
The Dalit Enterprise, a magazine that aims to celebrate the success of Dalit businessmen and motivate more people from the community to become entrepreneurs, was launched on Friday. The magazine will be on the same lines as the Black Enterprise, which was launched in the US in 1970.“As Dalit businessmen, our problems are very specific and need to be highlighted specifically. We need to celebrate our success stories and also bring out the problems faced by the community’s businessmen when they try to enter the Indian market. The aim is to at least have 100 dalit billionaires in India. When people talk about Dalit empowerment, people just talk about ghareebi hatao, its time to talk about ameeri badhao now,” says Chandra Bhan Prasad, a Dalit entrepreneur and author, who will be the editor of the magazine. Read the story here.
India, US decide to step up defence interoperability
India and the United States have decided to implement an agreement to improve interoperability between their defence forces, specially their navies, called Helicopter Operations from Ships other Than Aircraft Carriers (HOSTAC). The decision was announced by the two sides in Clark, Pampanga, The Philippines, where defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman met her American counterpart James Mattis, their second meeting in a month. HOSTAC allows multiple navies and coast guards to work with each other, using their platforms, through prior knowledge of their equipment, processes and guidance systems. This is a unique arrangement that the United States has promoted. Read the story here.
In a bid to solve Ayodhya issue, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar meets Nirmohi Akhara and Muslim law board members
Art of Living founder Sri Sri Ravi Shankar is understood to have met representatives of two groups in the Ayodhya dispute in a fresh attempt to find an out-of-court settlement to the legal case over the Babri Masjid-Ram Temple issue. Sources said Ravi Shankar met representatives of Nirmohi Akhara and and All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) to discuss the legal tussle over the disputed land in Ayodhya. Although the AIMPLB is not a party in the case, being the apex Islamic body on religious and personal matters helps it wield considerable influence over the community. The Muslim side is represented by the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board, with Jafaryab Jilani – incidentally a member of the AIMPLB – as its counsel. Read the story here.
Pakistan journalist Ahmed Noorani injured in attack in Islamabad
An Islamabad-based journalist, who focused on political issues and was critical of the government, was injured when he was attacked by unidentified men armed with knives and metal rods at a busy intersection on Friday morning. Police said Ahmed Noorani, a reporter of The News newspaper that is part of the Jang media group, was intercepted and attacked by the assailants at Zero Point area in Islamabad. The men attacked Noorani and his driver with knives and rods and then ran away. Both injured men were taken to the nearby Poly Clinic for treatment and their condition was described as stable despite wounds to the head. Read the story here.
New JFK files tell less than anticipated, Oswald remains lone killer
Researchers, historians and conspiracy theorists will all have to wait at least another six months to get their eyes and hands on all documents from the JFK files as President Donald Trump ordered a truncated release on Thursday, bowing to pressure from the CIA, FBI and other federal agencies. The National Archives released nearly 2,900 of the 3,100 previously unseen documents late in the evening close to the expiry of a deadline for them to be made public. Senior administration officials said the rest will be rolled out in the coming weeks as agencies re-review the material adjudged sensitive, with the outside limit of April 2018. Read the story here.
Xi Jinping orders Chinese Army to be combat-ready as he begins 2nd term
Chinese President Xi Jinping has begun his second five-year term ordering the country’s 2.3 million-strong military, the world’s largest, to be absolutely loyal to the ruling Communist Party and intensify its combat readiness by focussing on how to win wars. The 19th Party Congress endorsed Xi’s leadership of the party, the military and the presidency this week and approved his ideology to be written into its Constitution, elevating him on par with modern China’s founder Chairman Mao Zedong and his successor Deng Xiaoping. Meeting top military officials, Xi ordered them to be absolutely loyal to the party, to focus on how to win in wars, to pioneer reforms and innovation, to scientifically manage commanding a unit, to lead troops in accordance with the strictest standards and to take the forefront in complying with laws and regulations. Read the story here.
PV Sindhu, HS Prannoy enter semi-finals of French Open badminton
World Championships silver medallist PV Sindhu beat Chen Yufei of China in straight games to storm into the women’s singles semi-final of the French Open Superseries in Paris on Friday. Compatriot HS Prannoy also earned a straight games victory to enter the men’s singles last four. This is Sindhu’s first-ever last-four appearence in the tournament. The Olympic silver medallist took just 41 minutes to defeat World No. 10 Yufei 21-14 21-14 in the quarter-finals. Later, HS Prannoy defeated South Korean Jeon Hyeok Jin 21-16, 21-16 in 47 minutes to enter the men’s singles semi-finals. This is his first victory in two meetings against the South Korean and will next face the winner of the match between compatriot Kidambi Srikanth and Shi Yuqi of China. Read the story here.