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Imran Khan nothing but a ‘chaprasi’ because Pakistan is run by ISI, terrorists, says BJP leader Subramanian Swamy

Agartala (Tripura): Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Subramanian Swamy on Sunday called Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan a chaprasi’ (peon), adding that Islamabad is run by the military, ISI and terrorists.

“Imran Khan is nothing but a ‘chaprasi’ because the country (Pakistan) is run by the military, ISI and terrorists, and Imran Khan is just one of the ‘chaprasi’ of the government. He may be called the Prime Minister, but he is a ‘chaprasi’,” Swamy said while addressing a press conference here. “There is only one solution to Pakistan. Balochis don’t want to be part of Pakistan, Sindhis don’t want to be part of Pakistan, Pashtuns don’t want to be part of Pakistan, so break Pakistan into four parts – these three (Baloch, Sindh, Pashtun) and the residual West Punjab…. I also think that (External Affairs Minister) Sushma Swaraj should not waste her breath speaking about Pakistan in the UN because Pakistan gets psychic pleasure when India abuses it. Just ignore Pakistan, prepare your military and one day break it up into four,” he added.

Swamy’s statement comes after Swaraj on Saturday used the United Nations platform to highlight the serious issue of Pakistan-sponsored cross-border terrorism and human rights violations in India. Meanwhile, speaking on Bangladesh, Swamy said, “India will continue to support it, but Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina should be warned to stop those mad people from demolishing Hindu temples, converting Hindu temples into Masjid and converting Hindus to Muslims. If Bangladesh does not stop torturing the Hindus, I would recommend that our government invades Bangladesh and takes it over.” Swamy was here to attend a programme of ‘Sanskritik Gaurav Sansthan’ Tripura unit.

832 people killed after 7.4 magnitude earthquake triggers tsunami in Indonesia

Jakarta: The death toll from Indonesia’s strong quakes and tsunami in Central Sulawesi province soared to 832 on Sunday as lack of rescuers and vast stretches of land hard to access hampered search and rescue efforts, a government official said here.
Vice President Jusuf Kalla said the toll could rise into the thousands as the death figure now came mainly from the capital city of Palu while the situation in the other two densely populated districts remained unclear as they were cut off from communications and help, Xinhua news agency reports. Among the death figures, 821 were recorded in Palu, the provincial capital, and the rest in Donggala district, while figures in two other affected districts, Parigi Moutong and North Mamuju, were not included, the National Disaster Management Agency’s Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said.
“Besides, there are still many bodies who have not been identified. The victims remain under rubble or flattened buildings. Their number is still a lot. Many areas have not been reached. So that the number of victims is likely to increase,” Sutopo told a press conference. The catastrophe has also seriously injured 540 people and forced 16,732 people to flee homes, the spokesman said. “Most victims were hit by rubble or falling blocks of concrete and waves of tsunami,” he said.

Strong and shallow under-earth quakes of 6.0-, 7.4- and 6.1-magnitude that triggered a tsunami have devastated the province, with the hardest-hit area in Palu, the provincial capital and Donggala district.  The tsunami, with a height of 0.5 to 3 meters, devastated coastal areas near Talisa beach in Palu city and Donggala district, the Meteorology and Geophysics Agency said. A mass funeral was held on Sunday for those who lost their lives, Sutopo said. Sutopo said the search and rescue operation had been hampered by electricity outage, cut-off communications and limited number of heavy machinery equipment.
“The number of machinery devices operating is too little compared with the scale of the damage, the number is not sufficient. Sending the heavy machinery equipment from outside to the province is also facing obstacles. The affected territory is large,” he said. Communications were only in service in Palu city, the spokesman said. President Joko Widodo visited a housing complex in Palu flattened in the quake and called for patience. “I know there are many problems that need to be solved in a short time, including communications,” he said, adding the ruins would be rebuilt. The focus of the search and rescue operation now is to retrieve victims from under the rubble of Roa Roa hotel in Palu, which has been levelled. About 60 people were estimated to be inside the building when the quake hit, said Sutopo. The heads of the three districts have been encouraged to declare a emergency status, the spokesman said.
Search efforts were also being undertaken in the ruins of Ramayana Hotel, Dunia Baru Restaurant and wreckage of houses and buildings in coastal areas near Talisa beach which was hit by the tsunami, he said. Meanwhile, a total of 61 foreign nationals were affected during the disasters, including 21 Chinese citizens who have been secured safely along with those from Singapore, Belgium, Germany and Vietnam, said Sutopo. But the fate of one South Korean citizen, one Malaysian and three French citizens remained unknown, he said, adding the South Korean might have been trapped in Roa Roa Hotel.

25 years of Latur Osmanabad earthquake: Recap of the deadly tragedy that shook Maharashtra

One of the deadliest earthquakes witnessed by the country, the Latur Osmanabad earthquake, hit Maharashtra on September 30, 1993. The villagers every year observe a ‘black day’ on September 30. This was the day when a devastating earthquake struck the Latur-Osmanabad region 25 years ago, killing around 10,000 people and injuring over 30,000. Although so much time has passed, people are still coming to terms with life and some are even waiting for compensation for damages suffered in the massive disaster.

Here are some facts you may not know about the Latur earthquake:

The earthquake left a huge hollow at Killari village in Maharashtra’s Latur district, which was also the epicentre, and remains in place till date.

The earthquake primarily affected the districts of Latur and Osmanabad. Considering the number of districts affected by the tremors, the toll of those killed and injured was very high because Latur is a densely populated place. Since the tremors had hit around 3:56 a.m., villagers of Latur and surrounding areas had no warning and hence many of them were smashed to death under the remains of their own houses which collapsed in the shockwaves. The earthquake created so much havoc also because its hypocenter was relatively shallow, only 10 km deep resulting in more damage caused by the shockwaves.

Photo from FPJ’s archive

About 52 villages were demolished in the intraplate earthquake

Photo from FPJ’s archive

Since the location of the tremors did not lie on a plate boundary, it is not certain as to what caused them. The existence of fault webs could be one reason, whereas according to another argument, the construction of a reservoir along the Terna was responsible for leading to fault lines.

Photo from FPJ’s archive

Relief items and rescue workers were sent by many foreign and local donors as soon as the news about the earthquake hit the headlines. Foreign donors sent the first convoy of 120 trucks containing tents, blankets, food and clothing, medical supplies and temporary shelters.

Photo from FPJ’s archive

After the damage was estimated in numbers, reconstruction was offered by the World Bank for reconstruction of Latur.

Photo from FPJ’s archive

Rescue work was immediately commenced by the Indian Army, State Reserve Police Force, Central Reserve Police Force, and other law enforcement agencies as well. A little later, the assistance of Rs 46.55 lakh was provided to farmers and 299 persons were given cattle as they had lost theirs in the earthquake.

Photo from FPJ’s archive

1,26,132 agricultural apparatuses were also provided to the farmers
The National Disaster Management Authority was also set up only after the Latur earthquake.

Jammu and Kashmir: National flag displayed upside down in BJP rally in Kathua, FIR filed

Jammu: The national flag was allegedly displayed upside down during a rally led by senior BJP leader Rajiv Jasrotia in Kathua district, following which an FIR was lodged for insulting the tricolour, police said Saturday.

The FIR was registered Friday against unknown persons in Kathua Police Station under Section 2 (insulting the national flag or the Constitution) of the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, a police official told PTI. A local resident, Vinod Nijhawan, in a complaint alleged the national flag was disrespected during the rally led by Jasrotia, who is a former minister, and BJP candidate Rahul Dev Sharma Thursday, the official said.

Jasrotia, who is the BJP MLA from Kathua constituency, had accompanied Sharma in a procession from his Shiv Nagar residence to file nomination papers forward number 19 Thursday for the Urban Local Body polls.

The complainant presented a video clip purportedly showing a person, just behind the BJP legislator, holding the tricolour upside down during the procession which covered a distance of over two km, the official said. In his complaint, Nijhawan said the act was “very heinous” and hurt the “sentiments of the patriotic citizens of India”. The official said an investigation was underway in the matter.


No question of PDP, NC merger: Altaf Bukhari

Srinagar: Senior leader of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and former minister Altaf Bukhari on Saturday clarified that there was no question of merger of his party and the National Conference (NC) but for formation of a coalition government.

The clarification comes a day after Bukhari opined that the PDP and NC must come together to defend Article 35 A of the Constitution, which, he claimed, was misrepresented.
“My Yesterday’s remark was in reply to a question about my reaction to the civil society’s suggestion that PDP and National Conference should join hands, form the government and defend article 35A together. There is no question of a merger of parties. It is only about joining hands to form the government,” he told ANI.
“I am not the party’s authorised representative to speak on it. As an inhabitant of the state and as an elected representative, I say it is a welcome step. If the interest of the state can be met by joining hands between the two regional forces, I would definitely use my influence also,” he further noted.
The NC and the PDP have boycotted the upcoming local body elections in Jammu and Kashmir over lack of clarity in the Centre’s stance on Article 35A, which is meant to secure all permanent residents of the State and accord special rights and privileges in public sector jobs, acquisition of property in the state, and other public aid and welfare.


Lucknow shooting: Deceased’s kin threatens to take body to Adityanath’s house

New Delhi: Following the death of Vivek Tiwari late on Friday night in Lucknow’s Gomti Nagar area, the victim’s brother said the family will take Tiwari’s body to Adityanath’s residence if he did not come visit them.
“We have three demands. An SIT has to be formed for a probe, a job should be given to his wife and the right amount of compensation hould be given to the family. We are waiting for Yogi Ji to come here, else we’ll take Vivek’s body to his residence. If he can’t come, we’ll go,” Vivek’s brother told ANI.
Lucknow District Magistrate said that a written communication has been sent to Tiwari’s family, stating that all demands put forth have been accepted.
“All demands of the family have been sanctioned. If they want CBI enquiry, then it will be initiated. Job will be given to his wife and Rs. 25 lakhs will be given as compensation. Enquiry will be completed within 30 days,” he said.
Tiwari, an employee of Apple, was on his way home when the Police asked him to stop his car, and was later shot at. Tiwari was immediately taken to Lohia Hospital in the city, where he succumbed to his injuries.
However, the police constable who has been accused of shooting Tiwari claimed that he fired in self-defence, as Tiwari tried to run over him.
The victim’s wife, Kalpana Tiwari, also urged Adityanath to address the incident and take necessary steps against the constable.
Meanwhile, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday spoke to Adityanath and Director General of Police (DGP) Om Prakash Singh on the same.
An investigation was also launched by the UP Police against the accused under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).


Indonesia quake-Tsunami death toll jumps to 384, many being treated in open air

Medical team members help patients outside a hospital after an earthquake and a tsunami hit Palu, on Sulawesi island. Photo by MUHAMMAD RIFKI / AFP
Palu (Indonesia):
Nearly 400 people were killed when a powerful quake sent a tsunami barrelling into the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, officials said Saturday, as hospitals struggled to cope with hundreds of injured and rescuers scrambled to reach the stricken region.
The national disaster agency put the official death toll so far at 384, all of them in the tsunami-struck city of Palu, but warned the toll was likely to rise. In the city – home to around 350,000 people – partially covered bodies lay on the ground near the shore, the day after tsunami waves 1.5 metres (five feet) came ashore.
There were also concerns over the whereabouts of hundreds of people preparing for a beach festival due to start Friday evening, the disaster agency said. Hospitals were overwhelmed by the influx of injured, with many people being treated in the open air, while other survivors helped to retrieve the remains of those who died. One man was seen carrying the muddy corpse of a small child.

The tsunami was triggered by a strong quake that brought down buildings and sent locals fleeing for higher ground as a churning wall of water crashed into Palu, where there were widespread power blackouts. Dramatic video footage captured from the top floor of a parking ramp in Palu, nearly 80 kilometres (50 miles) from the quake’s epicentre, showed waves of water bring down several buildings and inundate a large mosque.
“I just ran when I saw the waves hitting homes on the coastline,” said Palu resident Rusidanto, who like many Indonesians goes by one name.
The shallow 7.5 magnitude tremor was more powerful than a series of quakes that killed hundreds on the Indonesian island of Lombok in July and August. Indonesian president Joko Widodo said the military was being called in to the disaster-struck region to help search-and-rescue teams get to victims and find bodies.
Earlier, the head of the country’s search and rescue agency Muhammad Syaugi told AFP that local staff had found “many” dead bodies.
“We’re particularly concerned about the impact of the earthquake on children, who are more vulnerable to being swept away in tsunamis,” said Tom Howells, NGO Save the Children’s Program Implementation Director.
People living hundreds of kilometres from the epicentre reported feeling the massive shake, which came hours after a smaller jolt killed at least one person in the same part of the country.
The quake hit just off central Sulawesi at a depth of 10 kilometres just before 1100 GMT – early evening in Sulawesi – the US Geological Survey said. Such shallow quakes tend to be more destructive. Pictures supplied by the disaster agency showed a badly damaged shopping mall in Palu where at least one floor had collapsed onto the storey below, while other photographs showed major damage to buildings and large cracks across pavements.
The agency also said homes and a local hotel were flattened while a landmark city bridge was destroyed. A key access road had been badly damaged and was blocked by landslides, the disaster agency said.
The main airport in Palu, capital of South Sulawesi province, was shut after the tsunami struck and was expected to stay closed for at least 24 hours, complicating any disaster relief efforts. Friday’s tremor was also felt in the far south of the island in its largest city Makassar and on neighbouring Kalimantan, Indonesia’s portion of Borneo island.
The initial quake, which was followed by a series of powerful aftershocks, struck as evening prayers were about to begin in the world’s biggest Muslim majority country on the holiest day of the week when mosques are especially busy.
Indonesia is one of the most disaster-prone nations on earth. It lies on the Pacific “Ring of Fire”, where tectonic plates collide and many of the world’s volcanic eruptions and earthquakes occur.
Earlier this year, a series of powerful quakes hit Lombok, killing more than 550 people on the holiday island and neighbouring Sumbawa. Indonesia has been hit by a string of other deadly quakes including a devastating 9.1 magnitude tremor that struck off the coast of Sumatra in December 2004.
That Boxing Day quake triggered a tsunami that killed 220,000 throughout the region, including 168,000 in Indonesia. In 2010, about 430 were killed when a huge quake sparked a tsunami off the coast of Sumatra, while more than 600 were killed in a quake-tsunami disaster on Java island.

Indonesia tsunami: 30 bodies at one hospital after earthquake-tsunami, says official; video goes viral

Jakarta: Thirty bodies are lying at one Indonesian hospital after a quake and tsunami struck Sulawesi island, smashing into a city of 350,000 people, a hospital official told a TV station. “There are 30 dead at our hospital. And cases where we need to operate or need specialists to handle 12, head trauma nine,” Komang Adi Sujendra told Metro TV.


David Lipson

 Indonesia geophysics agency says Sulawesi quake caused a tsunami. This video is doing the rounds. We believe it is real.

6:16 AM - Sep 28, 2018
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BJP accuses Congress of ‘taking credit’ for Amethi’s Rail Neer plant

Amethi (Uttar Pradesh): The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday took a potshot at the Congress party for “taking credit” for the Rail Neer plant – situated in Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s Parliamentary constituency, Amethi in Uttar Pradesh.

Referring to the Congress party’ Twitter post where it mentioned that the plant, set up in 2014, can produce 72000 units of bottled water per day, the BJP stated that this is “another lie by Congress”. “The Rail Neer plant in Amethi, set up in 2014, has the capacity to produce 72000 units of bottled water per day for Indian Railways. #MadeInAmethi,” the Congress party wrote.

The tweet received a sharp reaction from the BJP, which claimed that all work for the plant was done by Modi government, but Congress is taking credit for it. “Congress announced the plant in 2010-2011. In 2014, only Foundation stone was laid just before election on February 19. Plant was commissioned by IRCTC under Railway Ministry on 02-06-2015. All work done by Modi government, but look who’s taking credit?” BJP tweeted.

The BJP further said that it is the first Rail Neer Plant set up by the IRCTC on Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode. “M/s Ion Exchange Purified Drinking Water Pvt. Ltd. is the Developer cum Operator. Fully automatic, state of art plant with eight stage filtration system,” it stated. The plant is located 125 kms away from Lucknow Railway Station at the UPSIDC site in Tikaria in Amethi district. It supplies Rail Neer water to major stations like Lucknow, Kanpur, Allahabad, Gorakhpur and Varanasi.

Arvind Kejriwal not adopting Ayushman Bharat scheme fearing Narendra Modi’s popularity, says Amit Shah

New Delhi: BJP President Amit Shah on Friday slammed Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for not adopting the Centre’s Ayushman Bharat scheme, claiming he feared it will increase Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s popularity among the people.

“… the Delhi government has started a non-cooperation movement. They may have taken inspiration from Mahatma Gandhi, but they may not have known that it is not the British government but a patriot Modi government at the Centre,” Shah said after inaugurating a party office in central Delhi’s Karol Bagh area. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader also accused the Kejriwal government of stalling development in the national capital by doing “cheap politics”.

“What is the reason that the Ayushman Bharat scheme has not been launched in the city?” Shah questioned. He said that Kejriwal deprived over one-and-a-half crore people in Delhi of the benefits of the healthcare scheme. He said that those residing in clusters or unauthorised colonies in Delhi will not get the benefits of the Ayushman Bharat scheme due to Kejriwal’s vote-bank politics. “They are giving excuse that they have built Mohalla Clinics. But can these provide treatment for cancer, stents for heart surgery, knee replacements?”

Taking a dig at the Chief Minister, Shah said that “Kejriwal should first get himself treated at any Mohalla Clinic to come across the reality.” He said that the city’s voters would set the account right in 2019. “You should not blame the EVMs (electronic voting machines) then,” Shah said. Attacking Congress President Rahul Gandhi and Kejriwal, Shah said that they feel pain only on issues such as implementation of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam and action against Maoists in the country.

“They are pained when we take action to identify illegal immigrants and against Maoist elements. But we are pained when anti-India slogans are raised,” Shah said. He asserted that the BJP government will identify and expel every illegal immigrant from the country after the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.