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2017: When outrage became our national past-time

If you started counting the number of things Indians were outraging about at 11:30 PM on 31st December 2017, you’d be well into the New Year before the list was completed. That’s because 2017 was a breakout year, where social media increasingly set the agenda in real life and we collectively jumped from one outrage to another.Facts were twisted, spliced, made into WhatsApp videos, packaged as viral posts on propaganda websites, as those who benefit from spreading falsities continued their merry ways with little disdain for the consequence of their actions. And often this systematic outrage was part of well-orchestrated campaign to peddle political agenda.Sample some of the topics from 2017 which generated fury and tonnes of coverage – Rajput royals and a little-known organisation losing their cool over Padmavati, political parties and their supporters convinced that EVMs could be hacked by Bluetooth, outraging over the celebration of festivals like Christmas and even the choice of destination of Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma’s wedding.The problem wasn’t that particular interest groups raised hell about issues that ‘affected’ them, but them getting a modicum of legitimacy by those who claim to be serious newsmen, who instead of calling out the stupidity gave tacit support to them when it suited their agenda. And make no mistake, all the meaningless outrage and insinuation weakened the institutions which we cherish and are essential in binding together this vast country of a thousand contradictions.Thus, when the judiciary is called anti–Hindu for banning Diwali fireworks; when EC is called biased for not going back to old ballot system; when a modicum of doubt is raised about integrity of an ex- PM; when art surrenders to alter of rabble rousers, it hurts us, it dents what we hold dear, what some of us like to call the ‘Idea of India’. We seem to have become a nation dominated by WhatsApp canards, a land where hate could be normalised by using the instrument of outrage.A murder of a migrant labour can somehow be justified as retribution for love-jihad, lynching of alleged cow smuggler can be passed off as some holy deed. Whether Tipu Sultan’s birthday should be celebrated thus gets prevalence over farmers’ death, systematic rotting of infrastructure in major Indian cities, becomes a boring topic to discuss compared to Rahul Gandhi going to watch Star Wars. It as if someone has cast a spell to put the entire nation under a massive brain freeze, stalling the age-old ability of the argumentative Indian.This led to a situation that we could count on someone to get angry about something at the drop of a pin. From Anushka Sharma’s elaborate sindur to Sunny Leone’s new-year performance, everything was a cause for mass rage. And the enraged came from all quarters, irrespective of their political leanings. Gurmehar Kaur’s poster for peace enraged the right wing, Sonu Nigam’s appeal for sleep was bitter music for left-wingers. People picked up issues based on what suited them and then started the game of outrage – freedom of expression and right to disagree be damned. In the process, the echo chambers only became denser, the ideological walls more pronounced. Nothing except cricket united us. Or not. Even there, critics went after MS Dhoni’s head after one bad performance or found ways to complain about Virat Kohli’s brilliance arguing he hadn’t faced any ‘real’ bowlers of calibre to justify his presence among the pantheon of greats. Those who tried to make sense were drowned out in the sea of cacophony of loud mouths, willing to pit even the most complicated issues into banal binaries. The media, influencers, politicians can be blamed but end of the day- it’s the common people which enabled them to carry on the status-quo, making mountain out of molehills. Any pushback would have forced for an idea of recalibration, a rejig of strategy. But none was there.Can 2018 be any different? Well, it’s hard to be hopeful. With a year to go for general elections, expect more non-issues being discussed and debated both on mainstream and social media. Yet, there is always hope. In the West, a powerful #MeToo campaign shook the sexist cabal in Hollywood that has stood firmly for decades. Maybe a desi campaign will someday kick off to excoriate random outrages dating back 800 years and debate meaningful issues from today’s time for true nation-building. Till then, let’s stick to awkwardly listening to national anthem in theatres only.

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Jammu and Kashmir: Clamour grows for legislation on generic drugs

Clamour is growing for passing a legislation to prompt the doctors to prescribe cheaper generic drugs instead of costly branded medicines in Jammu and Kashmir.Flagging off the debate, Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) has called on the government to pass a law to make it mandatory for doctors to prescribe cheaper generic drugs in order to benefit the large poor population of the state.“Jammu and Kashmir is fully competent to bring its own legislation due to the constitutional position of the state. That would make generic drug prescribing mandatory. Unless a legal framework is put in place, the push for generic medicines will remain an idea without implementation,” said Dr Nisar ul Hassan, president of DAK.The law, DAK hoped, would make drugs affordable and accessible to poor patients who are not able to buy expensive branded drugs. “In J&K 21.63% population, comprising 24.21 lakh people do not have access to medicines due to lack of purchasing power. Generic drugs are copycat versions of branded drugs and cost 80 to 90% less than branded medicines as manufacturers do not have to spend on development and promotion of the drug”, he said.Jammu and Kashmir consumes medicines worth Rs 600 crores annually and of which Rs 400 crore is spent in Kashmir valley alone. Official figures reveal that there are 9451 licensed retailers and 6073 licensed wholesaler drug distributors in Jammu and Kashmir. Of which 4912 retaliators and 4573 wholesalers are operating in the valley.Also readJammu and Kashmir | Education gets mega boost, 16 new colleges, 400 upgraded govt schools to come up next year“Research has shown that costs were lowered significantly among patients who were prescribed generic medicines compared to patients who were given branded drugs. generic drugs account for 88% of prescriptions in the United States. In J&K doctors continue to dole out unnecessary expensive therapies when equally effective cheaper generic versions are available,” he said.DAK also red-flagged the deep-rooted nexus between doctors and pharma companies that is keeping generic drugs away from patients. “For writing costly branded drugs to gullible patients, pharma companies provide these doctors everything from luxury cars, family trips to household items,” Dr Nisar saidAlso readFrom helpline to WhatsApp number: Steps taken to help women in distress in Jammu and Kashmir DAK president noted that even the chemist shops get huge margins for selling branded medicines. “Nexus is misleading people about generic drugs that is preventing these drugs from getting popular”, said Dr Nisar.

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The rage and hatred behind a public murder

A video of a Hindu murdering a Muslim man in the name of “love jihad” has left most Indians stunned.

JD(U) asks workers to use social media for spreading party message ahead 2019 polls

The rank and file of Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal-United (JD-U) have been asked to reach out to every village, every habitation, to connect with the grassroots 365-days of a year and spread the message of JD(U) being a “party with a difference” that believes in “politics with agenda”.This has to be done, especially by promoting the social campaigns undertaken by the Nitish led government in Bihar, including total alcohol prohibition, and those against dowry and child marriages. Party MP R C P Singh asked them to get it printed in marriage invitation cards of their family members – that the bride and groom are above marriageable age and no dowry has been exchanged in the solemnisation of the wedding.Senior leaders of the party have asked the workers to give priority to booth-level management, both in the urban and rural areas. “The workers have been asked to rope in women, members of self-help-groups, ex-armymen, retired cops and teachers at every booth, to widen the party’s base,” said a Bihar-based JD(U) leader.Also readNitish Kumar govt to rely on CCTV cameras to keep crime rate in check The party will also launch a renovated, state-of the-art web portal early next year, to reach out to the tech savvy voters. The move is being seen as its preparations for the 2019 general election. Information about the party’s agenda and activities, web magazines, how to connect with the party or feedback for improvement etc, will be some of the features of the JD(U) website, the party leader said.Party workers were told to update their technological and social media skills. “Members have been asked to learn the use of Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp to reach the thoughts and ideals of the party and its leaders among the masses and use e-mails for communication,” said party leader Dr Amar Deep. The party has social media accounts but these are not update on a daily basis, and several of its leaders are also not quite active on social media platforms.Also readSBI changes names, IFSC codes of 1,300 branches: How will it affect you and other things to knowJD(U) has also told its youth leaders to up their participation in the party activities.

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Thief turns extortionist, demands Rs 10K

A 28-year-old Mumbai-based man, whose laptop bag was stolen while he was sleeping on a train, is now being blackmailed by the thief who is demanding money in return for the bag.The thief is abusing the victim via text messages and threatening him to pay the money via Paytm or else he will burn all his valuables.According to the victim, Dhagesh Desai, he was returning to Mumbai from Indore in Avantika Express on December 4. Desai claimed that his bag was missing when he woke up in the morning.He immediately lodged a complaint with Borivili Government Railway Police. However, the next day he received a call from an unknown number.The caller told him that he had stolen the bag and if Desai wants it back, he will have to pay Rs 10,000 immediately failing which he will destroy all his documents.”He then started sending me messages on WhatsApp and threatened me that if within 10 minutes I did not pay the money then he will destroy everything. The bag contained my laptop, my wallet and other important office documents,” Desai told DNA.”I am wondering what kind of security the railway is providing in the coaches. There were few more passengers on the train who lost their mobile phones and other valuables. Is been 5 days that the FIR has been lodged but the police have not done anything,” he added

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Meghwadi bizman held in stalking case

A businessman has been arrested by Meghwadi police for stalking after he allegedly sent his domestic help obscene photographs on WhatsApp. The accused had asked the victim to marry him, but she refused his proposal after which he started harassing her. The arrested businessman has been identified as Thomas John Kurian, 47.According to the police sources, the complainant, a 26-year-old woman, was working at the accused house as a maid and had exchanged mobile numbers. Since August 2016, the victim had also been working at Kurian’s office as an office assistant. “Kurian started calling and texting the victim and asked her to marry him. The victim, who was already married, left both her jobs,” said an officer from Meghwadi Police Station.He kept sending vulgar texts to the victim and her husband after which the victim filed a police complaint. Kurian was arrested Monday and booked under sections of the IPC.
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WhatsApp admin gets anticipatory bail from Rajasthan HC for objectionable posts by a member

The police started investigation into the matter. Group admin Mahendra applied for anticipatory bail at the local court and was denied. He then moved to the HC, where he got relief.

According to Ashok Changani, advocate for Mahendra, “Being an admin does not make him responsible for what is posted on the group. If the admin is responsible for posts of members, then the mobile service provider and WhatsApp should also be responsible.” “The IT Act needs to be amended to include the admin. In its present form, only the person who makes the posts is responsible,’” added Changani. While Mahendra has obtained respite from court, Brijendra is yet to get any relief.”
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–><!–end of breadcrumbx–>WhatsApp admin gets anticipatory bail from Rajasthan HC for objectionable posts by a member Whatsapp
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<!–end of artlbotbor–><!–end of artlsocl–>Written BySangeeta Pranvendra <!–end of artlbotbor–>Tuesday 5 December 2017 16:05 ISTMust readCyclone Ockhi: Schools to remain closed on Tuesday, Mumbai University and all its affiliated colleges to remain open Don’t know anyone by name of Shehzad Poonawalla: Tehseen disowns his own brother<!–end of artlmustredbx–><!–end of articllftpbx–>The admin of a WhatsApp group escaped arrest when he was granted anticipatory bail by the Rajasthan High Court. An FIR was lodged against the admin of the group at Jaisalmer under sections of IPC and IT ACT, holding him responsible for objectionable posts by a member of the group against a woman. The member was also mentioned in the FIR. When the admin was denied bail at the local court he moved High Court at Jodhpur and was granted anticipatory bail. The court observed that he was not responsible for the posts made by others. The group admin, Mahendra Garg, a resident of Jaisalmer, had created a WhatsApp group that had people from his community as members. On June 21 one of the members Brijendra Garg posted some photographs and comments against a 24 year old woman. He alleged that the lady was married previously but has again remarried, without divulging details of the past. Brijendra mocked both the husband and wife on the WhatsApp group. Subsequently, on June 25 an FIR was filed by the lady not only against Brijendra, who had posted on the group, but also Mahendra who is the admin of the group under section 509 IPC and Sec 67 of IT Act. They were accused of violating a woman’s modesty and publishing obscene material in electronic form. The police started investigation into the matter. Group admin Mahendra applied for anticipatory bail at the local court and was denied. He then moved to the HC, where he got relief. According to Ashok Changani, advocate for Mahendra, “Being an admin does not make him responsible for what is posted on the group. If the admin is responsible for posts of members, then the mobile service provider and WhatsApp should also be responsible.” “The IT Act needs to be amended to include the admin. In its present form, only the person who makes the posts is responsible,’” added Changani. While Mahendra has obtained respite from court, Brijendra is yet to get any relief.
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Why BJP is comfortable in Gujarat despite Congress onslaught: Inside party’s formidable messaging machinery

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Despite all-out attack launched by Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, Gujarat BJP is not ruffled. The confidence stems from the vast machinery it has built in every nook and corner of Gujarat to connect with its primary members. BJP has married its content and messaging strategy aided by technological support.To start with, Surat itself has 3200 WhatsApp groups operated by BJP workers, which are directly linked with each and every office bearer of the party. These groups further diversify when the content reaches primary members for distribution. “In a minute’s time, we have the capacity to touch base with 6 lakh people,” said PVS Sharma, BJP’s in-charge of South Gujarat.BJP has also tweaked its social media strategy. It is heavily banking on WhatsApp and Twitter platforms than Facebook. The war room boys feel that Facebook content is not instantaneous. i.e it doesn’t directly reach all users in real-time. For this very reason, BJP has WhatsApp groups at assembly level, Shakti Kendra and booth levels.
ALSO READ Gujarat Elections | All the ‘kichad’ thrown at me will help lotus bloom: PM Modi BJP has tried to connect with the workers and primary members in a three-pronged manner.Every assembly segment in Gujarat has a dedicated call centre. The job of the call centre through the election is to reach out to all primary members. They are harnessing the data which BJP collected during its missed call campaign. For example, Surat BJP has created a database of 11 lakh individuals who are its primary members.
ALSO READ Gujarat elections: Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani to fight as independent candidate from Vadgam ConstituencyThe call centres check all the missed calls they received and verified the numbers and personal addresses before connecting with them. It helped them to identify primary members up to booth level.The job of the call centre is to establish a personal connect with the voters. “We make them feel part of BJP’s larger family. From this set, Panna Pramukhs too are identified who are given responsibility of 40 to 45 voters. Their job during elections is to ensure that out of the list, all BJP sympathisers come out to vote.
ALSO READ Paresh Rawal compares PM Modi to Gautam Buddha, urges Gujaratis not to vote along caste lines These call centres are coupled with one war room in each district to monitor political developments in the area. The second component of the electoral strategy is the Audio Bridge, a technology BJP is using to connect all its rural workers. There are 35 constituencies in Surat and BJP has been able to connect almost all rural workers through the Audio Bridge technology. The call is initiated from a BJP district office and workers connect to the number. The Con call has the capacity to handle 1400 people at time. Sources say that the HQ can even monitor the numbers of the calls dropped during con call and they are immediately requested to connect again. Sources say that Audio Bridge was deployed in rural areas specifically because of limited bandwidth capacity.The last leg of the triad is Video Conferencing. It connects Central Offices with field offices of the candidates. The Central Offices have ensured that cameras with 360 degree views are installed to get a ground feel of the camp offices of the candidates. It is this formidable machine which is keeping BJP confident. Insiders say that if they can mobIlise their own primary members, through their elaborate messaging machinery, they will comfortably win this election. Jury is still out on it.

Open jail inmates can now video call their families

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a first, state prison inmates can now keep in touch with their families, thanks to the efforts of the state prison department. Inmates can make video calls to their families. There are plans to cover other such correctional establishments in subsequent phases.”We have issued orders that it should start for open jails and women prisons… we will expand it to other facilities later,” said Bhushankumar Upadhyaya, additional director general of police (prisons).”At present, the facility has been made available in the open jails at Amravati and Nagpur where prisoners can make video calls using apps like WhatsApp to their relatives from handsets given to officials … it will also cover prisoners in women jails,” said Yogesh Desai, Deputy Inspector General (DIG), Eastern Region, Nagpur.He added that the phone numbers of relatives on which these inmates would call were verified by the local police. “They will be able to make phone calls once in 15 days. Earlier, they were allowed to make voice calls, and the facility has been enhanced to video calling,” said Desai.”The prisoners who are lodged in the open jails in Vidarbha are selected from correctional facilities across the state… this video calling facility will reduce the expenses of their relatives who have to travel to these prisons for long distances and give them the satisfaction of meeting their family members,” he explained.While convicts are allowed two visits from their relatives, they can make phone calls to their families once every fortnight. Undertrials can meet their relatives once a week.”We are also allowing undertrials to make these video calls at an experimental level. However, convicts are given preference,” said Desai.

Now Facebook, WhatsApp access for Bihar college students under free WiFi scheme

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Around 50,000 students from 300 colleges in Bihar are availing the free WiFi service offered by the Government of Bihar as a part of its ‘Saat Nishchai’ scheme.The stats were shares by deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi following a review meeting of the free WiFi campus scheme. “The students will now get the facility of one time logging in with access to use WhatsApp, Facebook, Youtube and e-commerce websites to attract more students to make use of the scheme,” Modi said.The users are allowed to download up to 1GB data per day and a total of 10GB in a month. “Earlier, they had to login multiple times using their User ID and Password, but now they will have to log in only once and their device will remain connected to the WiFi,” he added.Modi said the Bihar government will spend around Rs 23 crore to install solar panels to ensure uninterrupted power supply so that the WiFi facility functions smoothly.Around 60 engineers who look after the maintenance of the WiFi equipment in colleges have also been asked to hold camps to make the students aware of the facility and encourage them to register for it.Modi said the number of users increased from 20,000 in June to over 49,000 at present.The scheme was launched on the occasion of Bihar Diwas in March 2017 to help youngsters become digitally smart and progress in life. It was one of CM Nitish Kumar’s pre-poll commitment and the government had sanctioned Rs 220 crore for it.

DIG gets relief in Shetye murder case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a major relief for deputy inspector general (DIG- Prisons) Swati Sathe, a state government probe has found there was no criminality in her WhatsApp posts expressing sympathies and drumming up support for jail officials accused of killing a woman inmate in the Byculla prison. Sathe was the investigating officer in the case.Sources, however, said the report had concluded that Sathe’s posts were made in an emotional state of mind and should not be repeated in the future with it being left to the “appropriate authorities,” namely the Maharashtra prison department to suggest action.A senior home department official said the report, which was submitted to the state government last week, found that “there was no criminality” in the social media posts by Sathe.”This cannot be called a clean chit. She did this in an emotional state, which should not happen in the future… the appropriate authority will suggest action,” added another official stating that “the facts have been communicated to the government.”

Actor Varun Dhawan files case against fan

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Actor Varun Dhawan complained against a female ‘fan’ for allegedly harassing him on WhatsApp.The actor gave a written complaint to the Santa Cruz police and BKC cyber police on November 2 stating that a woman has been harassing him through WhatsApp messages and threatened to commit suicide if the actor failed to acknowledge her feelings for him.“We are trying to trace the number and adequate action will be taken,” said a Santa Cruz police officer.

Uttar Pradesh: 2 arrested for sharing modified image of Taj Mahal with saffron flags

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Uttar Pradesh Navnirman Sena leader Amit Jani and his associate were arrested by the Special Task Force here today for allegedly outraging religious feelings by posting on WhatsApp a modified picture of the Taj Mahal with saffron flags atop its pinnacle and minarets.”Amit Jani and his associate Updesh Rana were arrested here by the STF, Agra, for posting a computer-generated picture of the Taj Mahal with seven saffron flags atop its pinnacle and minarets on a WhatsApp group,” an STF official said here.Jani was earlier booked under IPC sections 153B (imputations, assertions prejudicial to national integration) and 295 (deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs), and relevant sections of the Information Technology Act in Agra.In the WhatsApp post, Jani appealed to all men associated with various Hindu organisations to gather at the seventeenth century Mughal monument on November 3, triggering panic and rumours in Agra. Following this, an FIR was registered against him.Jani was in jail for three months in 2012 for allegedly vandalising former chief minister Mayawati’s statue in Lucknow’s Gomati Nagar area after the Samajwadi Party came to power that year.Jani’s actual name is Amit Agarwal and he is a native of Janikhurd village of Janikhurd block of Meerut district.

Now, Delhi cops get High Court, Supreme Court judgments on WhatsApp

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a bid to keep the Delhi police updated about the latest laws governing police investigation, an advocate has started an initiative to give information through WhatsApp about the recent judgments delivered by the Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court.The initiative, started by an advocate Vibhor Anand who was inspired after a sub inspector told him that he was not getting to know about the recent laws because of his hectic schedule.Following this, Anand started giving information about the recent observations by the HC and SC individually to all the police officers at their finger tips.”The credit of the initiative goes to SI Manmeet posted at Ranjeet Nagar police station who told me that despite being a law graduate, he is not bale to update himself about the latest laws due to his hectic schedule,” he said, adding that it was a larger issue pertaining to all officers.The initiative, which started with 50 officers on October 15, at present covers 300 police officers across seven districts of the city who are receiving regular updates through WhatsApp.Speaking about the action, Rohit Rajbir Singh, ACP Patel Nagar said, “It is a great initiative to increase the knowledge of the IOs.”The drive deals with the investigation by the police officers falling under Section 154 CrPC to 173 CrPC.THE INITIATIVEThe initiative was started by Advocate Vibhor Anand, who was inspired after sub inspector SI Manmeet told him he was missing out on recent laws because of his hectic schedule.
The initiative, which started with 50 officers on October 15, at present covers 300 police officers across seven distr icts

Rajya Sabha MP accused of sexually exploiting woman

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Former CPI(M) leader and member of Rajya Sabha, Ritabrata Banerjee, has been summoned by the West Bengal CID in connection with a sexual exploitation complaint.A software engineer from Balurghat in South Dinajpore district has alleged that Banerjee had got into a physical relationship with her under the false pretext of marriage but later backed out.A team of CID officials went to Banerjee’s Garia residence on Thursday. Since he was not there, they pasted a copy of the notice on the door.A senior CID official said they had taken over investigation of the complaint of sexual exploitation and would like to interrogate him. The official said Banerjee had been asked to appear at the CID office on Friday.“We will have to question both the accused and the complainant and go through all digital documents, including emails, WhatsApp messages and text messages, exchanged between the two,” the official added.Meanwhile, the woman has been summoned by Delhi Police. “Since it was a complaint against a Rajya Sabha member, I had written to the parliamentary chairman of the Upper house of Parliament along with all the evidence. I will definitely go to Delhi for the sake of the investigation,” the woman said while talking to mediapersons.NOT TRACEABLEPolice sources said Banerjee was not traceable on any of the eight phone numbers he used. He reportedly left for Hong Kong.

Opposition guns for Vinod Tawde

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Opposition is gunning for State Education Minister Vinod Tawde and his Officer on Special Duty (OSD) Dr Charudutt Shinde after DNA’s newsbreak on Friday. “Tawde’s defence of Shinde in the cash-for-work order is very weak. If he was indeed serious about truth, he would have handed over the probe to the Anti-Corruption Bureau,” says Nationalist Congress Party spokesperson Nawab Malik.Malik pointed out that Tawde had limited the scope of probe by initiating a Departmental Enquiry against desk officer Shashikant Salunkhe, who has been suspended for altering the names of contractors in the Government Resolution (GR). In a statement to the principal secretary, Salunkhe had alleged that he had altered the names at the instructions of Tawde’s OSD, Dr Shinde. He also claimed Dr Shinde sought money from him for the job, on behalf of the contractors.Salunkhe’s handwritten statement dated June 13, 2017 and submitted to Principal Secretary is quite explosive. In this, Salunkhe has noted down, in detail, when he received calls, and where and whom he gave money. He has also claimed he had emailed the altered list to Dr Shinde and then sent a WhatsApp message to confirm it.”While issuing the GR, Shinde asked me to add new names. His typist Bagul, too, called me over phone and then met in person with the same instructions — asking me to insert new names in the GR on March 31, 2017. Twenty-six new work orders from nine district were added in the final GR. After making the changes, I also emailed the altered list to the official (Dr Shinde) and even sent message on WhatsAapp. I didn’t receive any objections,” Salunkhe wrote in his statement.He further said that 23 days later, when MLAs and ministers started complaining to the department about absence of work in their constituencies, he was questioned about the change in the list.”I was surprised at these sudden objections. I failed to understand why the blame was being put on me alone. It was not my fault. I was pressurised to do so by a senior official (Shinde). I have been in government service for 22 years, but there hasn’t been a single complaint about me so far. For the first time, some one has put blame on me for work that was not done by me. My only mistake is that I made the changes as per the oral order issued by the senior official from the Minority department,” he stated in his clarification.Shinde refused to speak to DNA on the issue. Tawde claimed the inquiry was not complete and Salunkhe had been suspended pending full inquiry.Malik said Salunkhe was being made a scapegoat. “Salunkhe is clearly a small fish who is being sacrificed to protect the big fish. If the government indeed investigates this thoroughly, many more skeletons will tumble out of closet,” he said.Sequence of events as per Salunkhe’s statement:Work orders issued on January 6 and January 11Dr Charudutt Shinde calls Shashikant Salunkhe and asks him to pay him Rs one lakh from the contractorsSalunkhe borrows money from some friends (instead of collecting it from the contractors) and says he gave it to Dr Shinde in the basement of the MantralayaSalunkhe says he brought this to the notice of the Establishment departmentHe claims Dr Shinde called him again on March 31 to insert fresh names with the help of his typist, BagulSalunkhe claims he received some money from contractors, which he handed over to Bagul at a tea stall near Mantralaya’s parking lot

Mumbai rains, Tamil Nadu floor test, Durga idol immersion and Padmavati: DNA evening must reads

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>No cyclone warning in Mumbai, don’t trust WhatsApp messeges: IMDAs heavy rains pounded the Mumbai city and suburbs for the second day on Wednesday, WhatsApp messages of certain major roads being closed for vehicular traffic turned out to be fake. Heavy rains have disrupted flight operations at the Mumbai airport and delayed suburban train services in the financial capital. The weather department also said that people must not believe on fake news of cyclone warning. dnai.in/f5aACalcutta High Court to Bengal govt: Don’t create line between 2 communitiesThe Calcutta High Court on Wednesday while hearing of petitions for extension of immersion schedule for Durga puja that has been restricted by the West Bengal government in view of Muharram asked that why can’t two communities celebrate together. The High Court bench had some pointed questions for the West Bengal government. HC told state government, ” When you (state govt) are firm there is communal harmony in the state, why are you creating communal distinction b/w the two?”, reports ANI. dnai.in/f5byAIADMK power struggle: Madras HC extends stay on floor testThe Madras High Court on Wednesday extended its stay order on a floor test in the Tamil Nadu Assembly till further directions. “There will not be floor tests for next days until counters are filed,” said Aryama Sundaram, lawyer of Tamil Nadu Speaker P Dhanapal. dnai.in/f5aHRs 1,756 crore approved to enhance and improve sports infraThe Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday approved the revamped Khelo India programme at a cost of Rs.1,756 crore for the period 2017-18 to 2019-20. This marks a watershed moment in the history of Indian sports, as the Programme aims at mainstreaming sport as a tool for individual development, community development, economic development and national development.dnai.in/f5bBSanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati’s first look to be unveiled tomorrowThe long wait is over. The first look of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati is set to be revealed tomorrow, September 21, marking the arrival of Navratri. The timing couldn’t be better. Rani Padmavati aka Deepika Padukone arrives as the country prepares for devisthapana. Bhansali’s latest offering, Padmavati, celebrates Indian culture and the director thought it was an auspicious occasion to reveal the first look of his film. SLB confirms, “I’m happy to bring the story of the Rani Padmavati to the screen. It was a fitting date for us to launch the first look of the film and celebrate this auspicious occasion.” dnai.in/f5bi

43 including Honeypreet Insan named wanted in Panchkula rioting case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Haryana police have named 43 people including Dera Sacha Sauda chief Ram Rahim’s adopted daughter Honeypreet Insan as wanted in Panchkula rioting case.”The Following accused is wanted regarding violence in Panchkula on August 25. The identity of those giving information leading to their arrest will be kept secret,” reads the message posted on Haryana police site.The wanted list also consists photographs of all the 43 accused. The police have also given a mobile number, WhatsApp number, and email id to provide information about the accused. ALSO READ Rape convict Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh is a sex addict, showing withdrawal symptoms in Rohtak jail, say doctorsMeanwhile, the police have made two fresh arrests in connection with incidents of violence which broke out on August 25 in Panchkula after sect chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was convicted in a rape case.Efforts are also on to trace the Dera chief’s adopted daughter Honeypreet Insan and Dera spokesman Aditya Insan, against whom a lookout notice was issued earlier.Violence broke out in Panchkula after the Dera chief’s conviction, leaving 35 dead, while six others were killed in incidents in Sirsa.The 50-year-old Dera chief, who is lodged in the Sunaria Jail in Rohtak, had been sentenced to 20 years of imprisonment by the CBI court for the 2002 rapes of two of his disciples.The Special Investigation Team (SIT) of Haryana Police also arrested three Dera Sacha Sauda (DSS) followers for hatching conspiracy to help Dera chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh escape from Panchkula, during the agitation on August 25.

Mumbai Divisional Board cancels Virar college’s registration

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Mumbai Divisional Board has cancelled the registration of Mount Mary Junior College in Virar in connection with the paper leak case in the Class XII board exams which came to light in March this year.In March 2017, papers of Secretarial Practice (SP) and Marathi were leaked on WhatsApp minutes before the exam started. The Navi Mumbai police who were investigating the case had found that the photographs of the papers were clicked in the Virar college. The police had later arrested officials of the college including the principal along with a private tuition teacher in connection with the case.The Board had formed a committee to look into the issue of leaks soon after. The Committee has recently submitted its report after which the divisional board has now cancelled its registration.Dattatray Jagtap, Chairman, Mumbai divisional board said that apart from its connection to the paper leak case, the committee had found several lapses in the working of the college — including the lack of adequate number of teachers, appointments without permissions, lack of infrastructure including labs etc after which the committee recommended the cancellation of the school’s registration.”Several inadequacies were found in the college after the team visited it. One of the major violations was the appointment of a person as a centre incharge without the permission of the board. After the committee submitted its report citing all the lapses, the board has decided to cancel its registration,” added Jagtap. While the board has cancelled the registration of class XI and XII for the college, the state education department will now take a call on what action should be taken against the school.Jagtap said that the board would initiate the process of transferring the existing students to other nearby colleges.THE CASEIn March 2017, papers of Secretarial Practice (SP) and Marathi were leaked on WhatsApp minutes before the exam started.
The Navi Mumbai police who were investigating the case had found that the photographs of the papers were clicked in the Virar college.

HC to decide on VMC commissioner’s apology on next Monday

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Vadodara Municipal Corporation submitted an unconditional apology to the High Court on Monday after the Municipal Commissioner sent a WhatsApp message asking the court to pass a demolition order on the basis of merit. The court will decide if it wants to accept it or initiate contempt of court proceedings on September 18.The single bench of Justice RH Shukla asked the Additional Advocate General to impress upon the official that he had acted in haste and had tried to influence court proceedings.Vadodara’s Pradeep Shah and eight others had challenged the demolition of shops situated just opposite the railway station and in January 2017, the High Court had granted a stay on the demolition and asked th ecivic body to maintain status quo. During the hearing, Municipal Commissioner Vinod Rao had sent a WhatsApp message on August 22 with a request to dispose of the matter on merit. This invited the ire of the court, which asked him to personally appear before the court with an unconditional apology and the text that he sent to the judge.Rao, through an affidavit, unconditionally apologised on Monday. Appearing on behalf of the VMC, Maulik Nanavati and Additional Advocate General Prakash Jani submitted that there is no justification for the mistake. The official has submitted that he never intended to influence the court proceedings or the outcome.But, the petitioners’ advocate Sharvil Majmudar and Senior Counsel Mihir Thakore requested other contempt of court proceedings against the officer on record. Allowing time to bring such documents on record, the court kept the matter for a hearing on next Monday to decide whether or not to initiate action or simply close the case.”Respected Sir,Pardon me for sending this message, if you find it imappropriate.With all respect, May I humbly draw your attention towards a substantially demolished building standing as a looming threat to the public safety since eight months due to the exparty status quo order from the honourable high court. This structure could collapse any time during these days of heavy rains, taking many lives with it.May I alsohumbly draw your kind attention towards one of the most crucial development projects of the city attempted to be sabotaged to serve the unreasonable demands of a few ric and powerful individuals.Vadodara Municipal Corporation is planning to construct a state of art city transport Terminal and Multi Level Parking hubin front of Railway Station. It will have lakhs of passengers every day and ease out congestion and parking issues in front of railway station and MS University.Nine erstwhile tenants of Jilla Panchayat, all of whom are very rich and influential, are trying to sabotage it since eight months. VMC made earnest efforts to negotiate, and made best possible offer for amicable resolution of the dispute. Each time they agree and then back track. We are still open for any reasonable settlement even today.Every time the matter comes up for final hearing for disposal, they try new delay tac-tics to arm twist the VMC. Today, the matter is kept again for hearing and a new attempt would be made.With folded hands, i plead your honour to dispose the matter on merits considering the larger public interest as against narrow vested-interests of a few persons.Pls pardon me and ignore this message if you honour finds it inappropriate.Pls help us to help the city.Thanks and respectful regardsVinod RaoCommissionerVadodara Municipal Corporation”

UP: WhatsApp group admin arrested for ‘anti-religious’ post

Updated: Sep 9, 2017, 08:28 PM IST, PTI
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A WhatsApp group admin was arrested for posting an “anti-religious” message on the group in the Miranpur town of the district, police said today.The admin was arrested yesterday after a protest by local BJP leader Narender Tyagi, they said.Tyagi has filed a case against the admin and other group members, police added.

Blue whale challenge: Teen kills self in MP; 21-year-old woman saved in Puducherry

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 17-year-old who was allegedly taking part in the Blue Whale Challenge committed suicide by standing before a running train here, the police said.”We have got information that the Class XII student was part of the Blue Whale Challenge. We are checking his cell phone and investigating the matter,” additional superintendent of police (ASP) Arvind Dubey told PTI.”On the intervening night of Saturday and Sunday, the boy stood before a running train and was taking selfies. His body was found on the tracks this morning,” the ASP added.Dubey said the boy was a resident of Futera Ward and had been influenced by the Blue Whale Challenge over the last few days according to investigations.He had reached the final stage of the online challenge and to accomplish it, left his home on a motorcycle last night, the ASP added.The boy reached a rail crossing close to Futera lake and after parking the two-wheeler near the tracks, he started clicking selfies before a running train and ended his life, Dubey said.He said a CCTV camera installed at a house near the railway crossing had recorded the entire episode.”We have registered a case and investigating the matter,” he said.The challenge starts by asking participants via social media to draw a whale on a piece of paper, then carve a whale figure on their body. It is followed by other tasks such as watching horror movies alone or waking up at unearthly hours.The tasks also involve self-harm, while the final challenge is to commit suicide.Meanwhile, a 21-year-old woman who was allegedly in the advanced stages of finishing the Blue Whale challenge was rescued today, the police said here.On an information from the woman’s friend on a WhatsApp group, that she was acting abnormally and had not returned home since last night, the police traced her on a road along the beach near Gandhi Thidal early this morning, Director General of Police S K Gautam said.The WhatsApp group was created by Sub-inspector Keerthi to establish contacts with the residents of the area, the DGP said, adding the rescued woman is a bank employee.She has injuries on her wrist and a paper was recovered from her on which it was written “ten cuts in three days”. For the last few days she had locked herself up inside a room in her house, Gautam said.The woman has been handed over to her parents and she is being counselled, the officer said.Police have urged the people to alert them if they came across anyone, particularly youths, with abnormal behaviour.Massive campaigns were also planned to create awareness about the killer challenge, he said.The DGP presented a commendation certificate and a cash award of Rs 2,000 to the Sub-Inspector who saved the woman.The constable who had accompanied the SI was also awarded.Chief Minister V Narayanaswamy had yesterday said that the government would bring in a legislation to curb the menace of Blue Whale challenge and would set up monitoring committees to keep a vigil on the situation.The Blue Whale Challenge, which originated in Russia, starts by asking participants via social media to draw a blue whale on a piece of paper.The participants are then asked to carve the shape of a whale onto their body. They are given other “challenges” or “tasks” such as watching horror movies alone. These challenges or dares feature the commission of acts harming oneself. The last stage is suicide.

Man held for ‘spreading anti-national propaganda’ in J&K:

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A man has been arrested on charges of spreading “anti-national propaganda” on social media to vitiate the peaceful atmosphere in Jammu and Kashmir’s Doda district, the police said today. The social media monitoring cell of the Doda Police zeroed in on eight people involved in spreading anti-national propaganda through social media, and thereafter arrested Bashir Ahmed from the Gundna area, a police official said. Ahmed “posted anti-national content” on his Facebook wall and WhatsApp, he said. “He was trying to mislead the youth of the area and disturb the peace and communal harmony,” he added. A case has been registered against Ahmed in connection with the matter.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Bedi goes incognito to assess women safety in Pondy at night

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Riding pillion on a two-wheeler with her ‘dupatta’ (shawl) covering her face, Puducherry Lt Governor Kiran Bedi travelled incognito to assess safety of women in the Union Territory after dusk. In a WhatsApp message to media persons after a “night round” of the city yesterday, Bedi said, “Felt that Puducherry is safe for women even at night”. She, however, said that she would suggest a few measures “which need to be taken by the police to enhance security”. The former IPS officer usually cycles to neighbouring areas of the Union Territory during her weekend visits to meet people of the town and address the issues concerning them.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Opposition AIADMK slams Bedi for criticising port project

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Opposition AIADMK today accused Lt Governor Kiran Bedi of “trying to scuttle implementation of the port development project by making comments maligning the government and officials through Twitter and WhatsApp.” Addressing reporters here, leader of the AIADMK (Amma) Legislature wing A Anbalagan said when the development of port here to serve as a satellite port of Chennai Port Trust (CPT) was in progress, the Lt Governor had been making “comments and criticisms” that it would be a threat to the environment. She had been levelling charges against politicians and officials in the context of implementation of the port project, he said. “If she has any concrete proof about the infirmities in port development project she can expose them through social media as she had doing on various other issues,” he said. “The Puducherry government inked an agreement with CPT some months ago to develop the port here into a satellite port of the former. When work for getting infrastructure ready was on the Lt Governor has been making comments against the port development,” he said and wanted Bedi to come out with facts to prove her doubts instead of indulging “in a witch-hunt.” He also wanted the Lt Governor to speak out on various aspects of restoration of air services from Puducherry to Hyderabad. “Is she not interested in reactivating air services from Puducherry?” he asked. The AIADMK MLA also questioned the “hike in rates of property taxes” announced now by municipal bodies. “There was no consultation with Legislators, who are members of the Advisory Council of the municipalities and new rate had been finalised arbitrarily by the bureaucrats causing hardships to the proper owners,” he said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Army frames new policy on use of social media

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Indian Army has formulated a policy on the use of social media to ensure sensitive information is not leaked or compromised.The Ministry of Defence informed Parliament on Friday that serving personnel have been given a list of dos and don’t’s while using social media.In a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha, Minister of State in the Defence Ministry Subhash Bhamre said that the guidelines have been issued primarily to ensure security of information and avoid its manipulation or distortion.”The Indian Army has promulgated the policy on the use of social media by serving Army personnel, organisations which list out the dos and don’ts guidelines and content which are barred from being posted on social media platforms,” Bhamre said. He said violations of above guidelines are investigated by the units and formations concerned.Soldiers from the army and parmilitary forces had taken to social media recently to make public their grievances with the system prompting a policy to be framed. Security personnel had complained about quality of food, poor facilities and harassment by seniors in different instances earlier.Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat started a WhatsApp number for soldiers and officials of any rank to directly address their problems to him instead of going public and causing embarrassment to the force. Gen Rawat had urged jawans not to use social media and come directly to him earlier while announcing the Whatsapp number.In response to another question, Bhamre said 14,63,512 youths applied to the Indian Army since 2014.DIRECT CONTACTArmy Chief Gen Bipin Rawat started a WhatsApp number for soldiers and officials of any rank to directly address their problems to him instead of going public and causing embarrassment to the force

Police tracking social media to fight crime

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As investigations into heinous crimes are being delayed by the Delhi Police, the force has adopted various technologies to speed up investigation. Even the Lieutenant Governor has stepped in and sought a response from the police on how they plan to use technology to propel the pending investigations, which have escalated to two lakh cases.Highlighting the use of social media, the Delhi Police, in a law and order meeting with the Lieutenant Governor last week, said the use of social networking sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter in the commission of crime could be worked out through the use of mobile phones and internet. Even though the police has no official Instagram handle, officers use their personal accounts to trace the movement of criminals. “The use of Internet Protocol (IP) address is also helpful to check and curb cyber-related issues. In the case of online or bank-related fraud, the internet plays a vital role,” said a senior officer.The police have also revealed that fingerprint technology and Aaadhar cards have also helped trace criminals. In the case of homicidal deaths, DNA analysis technology is used. Other applications such as Snapchat and WhatsApp also help in tracing the accused. Last week, the police busted a gang of car jackers was busted by west district police, wherein the gang formed a WhatsApp group and shared details of their next heist.Other technologies used to crack cases of forgery include polygraph test, narco test, voice recording and forensic science technology.

Hoax busted: WhatsApp forward of ‘submerged Chandigarh airport’ is actually Chennai airport from 2015 floods

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A picture has been doing the rounds on WhatsApp claiming to be a flooded Mohali Airport.Some people even shared the image, claiming it was a submerged Ahmedabad Airport.However, DNA got in touch with the Chandigarh Airport authorities, who debunked the picture as false, saying that the image had been doing the rounds on social media all day.The picture goes back to the 2015 floods that hit Tamil Nadu. Airport services had been halted for a few days, after the runway got submerged under water.

3 held for circulating morphed picture of Tamil Nadu finance minister D Jayakumar

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A WhatsApp group member was arrested today for allegedly circulating a morphed, obscene picture of Tamil Nadu Finance Minister D Jayakumar.The police also arrested two administrators of the 198- member group called “Somangalam.”Two brothers, who were ‘admin’ of the group, which allowed circulation of the obscene messages and another person who posted the picture in the group were arrested and remanded to judicial custody, the police said.The police registered the case under provisions of the Information Technology Act on a complaint from local AIADMK functionaries and made the arrests after investigating the matter.The probe revealed that the WhatsApp group “Somangalam” was administered by two brothers of Somangalam area.They were identified and content of their mobile phones analysed. It showed that the obscene picture was circulated in the group on July 20, the police said.

The people trying to fight fake news

The explosion of mobile phones and connectivity has fuelled a scourge of fake news in the country.

Punjab eases rules for shooting crop damaging animals

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Short-term permits for shooting crop-damaging animals like wild boar and roz will no longer require panchayat resolutions, the Punjab government said today. The state government has also approved sterilisation of bulls by animal husbandry department to control the menace of stray cattle in line with the practice being followed in some other states, an official spokesman said. A meeting of Punjab State Wildlife Board chaired by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has decided to simplify the procedure for sanctioning 45-day permits for shooting these crop-damaging animals, he said. It was also decided to put the permit process online and on WhatsApp platform to ensure ease of procedure for grant of permits, he said. “These permits for limited hunting are confined to privately owned land and are meant only for crop-damaging animals,” the spokesman said. The meeting also decided on various initiatives to promote ecological preservation, including creation of a conservation reserve along 185 kms of River Beas. The Punjab State Wildlife Board has also been empowered to decide on fishing seasons as against the earlier practice of fishing being a part of the irrigation and drainage department’s domain. Other conservation measures approved at the meeting include creation of Ranjit Sagar Dam Wildlife Sanctuary to promote eco-tourism, such as angling and river cruise, the spokesman said. A proposal to ban commercial netting was also discussed, he said. The meeting also gave in-principle approval to release of ‘Gharials’ or fish-eating crocodiles (17 hatchlings of which are ready at Chhatbir Zoo) into Sutlej-Beas, he said. The state government also approved a proposal to convert Siswan village panchayat land into a community reserve by declaring 3,199 acres of land as forest area under the Land Preservation Act 1990, the spokesman added.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Filmmaker offered my girl a role, sought sex

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A Vadodara-based woman Riya (name changed), 33, on Wednesday filed a complaint at Kagdapeeth police station against a Gujarati film producer, Ashwin Solanki for allegedly demanding sexual favour from her 14-year-old daughter in return of work.In her complaint Riya further stated that Solanki had come in contact with her daughter through a WhatsApp group named ‘Acting Book’. Initially, the producer started communicating with her daughter through WhatsApp, but on May 22, a person named Dilip Parmar contacted her over the phone and gave her Solanki’s personal number.After a telephonic conversation with Solanki, Riya, her daughter and her son arrived in Ahmedabad to meet him. During the meeting, Solanki allegedly offered that he can make her daughter a successful actress in Gujarati film industry in return of a sexual favour.Following this, Riya filed a police complaint against Solanki. Police have registered a case and further investigation is on.

A day after murder, FB & WhatsApp land killer in cops’ net

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Facebook and WhatsApp landed Roshan, the domestic help who smothered and robbed a Lajpat Nagar woman on Tuesday, in the cops’ net on Wednesday. The accused was active on social media sites by the name of Balram.Roshan, along with Shesh Narain Rawat alias Karan and three other men, had smothered Sarita Jain, 53, before fleeing with jewellery worth Rs 25 lakh and Rs 10 lakh in cash. He had been hired recently. Jain lived with her husband Manak Lal and their son. The other servant, Rajan, was left tied up. The robbery and murder came to light around 3 pm, when Lal returned home to find his wife unconscious, the servant tied up, and the house ransacked.The family had not verified Roshan’s credentials with the police. “If the family had verified the domestic staffer with the Delhi Police, we could have nabbed the accused easily. Unfortunately for us, the only clue we had was the CCTV footage from the nearby cameras,” DCP (South-East) Romil Baaniya said.The agent from whom Roshan was hired also could not provide his correct address. “The family got in touch with the agency through Just Dial and other such advertisements. They did not check the license of the agency or its previous records,” Baaniya added.The agent, however, helped the police by giving details of Roshan’s Facebook profile and WhatsApp. This lead proved crucial as Roshan’s WhatsApp was constantly active even after the commission of the crime. He was consequently traced in Noida, Sector 27, and nabbed. During interrogation, Roshan told the police that they did not want to kill Jain and had just taped her mouth, but unfortunately, she suffocated.

German couple takes to social media in search of stolen dog

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A German couple touring India has taken to social media seeking help to trace their one-and-a-halfyear-old dog, Luke, that was stolen from them near Marina Beach here on Saturday.”Luke was tied outside the car parked near Marina Beach. At around 4 pm someone came in an autorickshaw and sped away with him,” said the message, which is being circulated on WhatsApp with a picture of the black Labrador. The couple — Steffen Kagera and Janin Scharrenberg — has been travelling around the world since April last year.”Janin was inside the car and I was taking a walk towards the sea. An autorickshaw briefly stopped beside the car, and Luke was gone,” he said.It was only after some passersby alerted Janin, she realised that Luke has been stolen. But by then the autorickshaw had disappeared. “Luke was always comfortable with strangers. We hope he is safe and being fed,” he said.The couple had filed a complaint with Marina police station. “Police don’t really know what to do. There are no CCTV cameras in the area. So they are unable to get any clues on Luke’s whereabouts. We are hoping for the best,” Steffen said. The couple distributed pamphlets and sticked posters of Luke at Marina beach for the second day on Tuesday, offering reward for information that can lead to Luke.Interestingly, the couple had found the dog near their car in a street in Greece last year. “We adopted him after a search for owners. We named him and got a pet passport. Luke became our travel companion since then,” he said.Initially, they had planned a road trip to Europe that was extended to Asia. “We reached India from Pakistan via Amritsar,” he said, adding they had cancelled their scheduled trip to Sri Lanka on July 17 to search for Luke.

Agencies remain on alert over communal fallout in country

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Intelligence agencies have alerted the Centre that the attack on Amarnath pilgrims killing seven people could trigger a communal flare up in Jammu and other parts of the country, prompting the NDA government to strategise to diffuse any backlash.According to the intelligence reports shared at the highest level the attack is an attempt to disrupt peace and cause communal disharmony in the country.Top government sources told DNA that agencies are alert over the fallout in the rest of the country and measures have been taken to maintain calm.An intelligence alert on 100-150 yatris being targeted to disrupt communal harmony was generated on June 25, sources said.”An advisory was sent to the district magistrates after the intelligence input to keep a close watch on communal discords that could turn into a big flare up,” said a top government functionary.As part of the strategy senior ministers and BJP leaders in other parts of the country have also been asked to make public statements that will douse the passions. “Challenge is to make sure that the situation does not get out of hand,” he said.Following the intelligence alerts the government has also communicated to the BJP leadership to convey to party workers on the ground not to get swayed by emotions and ensure that the public discourse does not take a communal turn.Intelligence agencies are also monitoring social media closely to ensure rumour mongering and communally sensitive remarks do not lead to any sort of disharmony. Sources said inciting views are being immediately blocked on social media. Also efforts have been made to quell any sort of hate mongering through WhatsApp.At the district level officials have been told not take any minor communal disagreement lightly to make sure things are not allowed to escalate.

Revenue department issues Twitter guidelines for collectors

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After DNA published a report in its July 8 edition on whom the district collectors of the state are following on the social networking website Twitter, Pankaj Kumar, commissioner of the revenue department, issued an advisory-cum-guideline for them in the evening the same day. Sources said on Saturday evening, Kumar posted a 16-page guideline on dos and don’ts in the official WhatsApp group of the collectors. DNA had reported how some collectors were following Twitter handle of Bollywood celebrities through their official Twitter handle. Recently, all 33 collectors of the state were asked to be active on social media, particularly Twitter, to solve grievances. Several of them are new to Twitter and are not aware about its operations in detail. A senior official said, the guidelines states, “Avoid following controversial characters, comments on Twitter.” The officer said, “Kumar has asked to not entertain people who are always trolling the government. He has asked the collectors to focus on welfare schemes and update about it.”It also advises to post pictures if any minister visits them and post updates about the same.

Jammu and Kashmir-fake-accounts-extract-army-information

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> An advisory has been issued by the Jammu and Kashmir Police, according to which a few people with fake accounts are operating on the social media and extracting important strategic information. A person has even been detained by the police during investigation, although no information has been revealed about him. Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) J-K Police Sunil Gupta, while talking to the media said they have received some information that the civilians are lured on the pretext of getting a job in the Army and important information is extracted out in the process. ?The social media sites and apps like Facebook and WhatsApp are being misused where fake ids and profiles are created. These fake ids create groups and pose themselves as faujis, and BSF and CRPF personnel,? said Gupta. “The youngsters added in the group think that they are added in an Army or the police group and in excitement, share information about strategic locations and important locations of the force unknowingly,” he added. He also stated that pictures of Army forces, police and girls are used to make a profile and thereby, has requested the youngsters, using social media to be aware of them. ?I would like the people who befriend strangers on the social media, especially those who lure them in the context of the recruitment in the army to be very careful,? he added. Gupta further revealed that there is no particular group involved in this and that they have just heard that profiles have been created by people from Pakistan. He also added that the man detained by the police is under investigation and nothing more can be revealed by them, regarding this. ?We are investigating and have talked to a lot of people but have only detained one person,? he said. Gupta added that as they have just detained the man yesterday it will take time to check his whether his intention was criminal or not. However, he revealed that there are people from India who are involved as well. ?They are asking about deployment, strategic plans, as people living in an area know about the deployment of a particular force, they are contacted by unknown people to extract this information,” he said. Meanwhile, the issued advisory says that “Facebook accounts of girls are created, who befriend innocent youth and ask for details like OTP, and/or create fake accounts of security personnel and offer help for job and in return try of extract vital information related to security forces.” An FIR has been filed for the same at Akhnoor in Jammu. Earlier on June 6, mobile internet services were suspended in Kashmir, which were later restored. The Jammu and Kashmir police also recently gave a statement saying that social media is manipulating the youth of Kashmir.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Case against BSP man for remarks against PM

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A case has been registered against a BSP worker from Ballia district in Uttar Pradesh on Sunday after he posted derogatory remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on WhatsApp.The case has been lodged at the Rasra Police Station in Ballia district against the BSP worker, identified as Suraj, under IT and Cyber laws on the complaint of a local BJP leader, Gopal Singh.The BJP leader had lodged a complaint with the Rasra police on Suraj’s indecent remarks and also submitted the screen shots of BSP worker’s WhatsApp post.

U’khand CM comes to rescue of man lying unconscious on road

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat today came to the rescue of a man lying unconscious on the road by rushing him to a hospital in a car which was a part of his convoy. He was returning from an official programme when he saw the man lying on the road in Lachchiwala area, official sources said. Rawat immediately asked his driver to pull up the car, got down the vehicle and went over to the man lying on the other side of the road, they said. The chief minister asked officials accompanying him to take the man to a hospital. He did not leave until the man was put in a car which was a part of his convoy and left for the hospital. Rawat’s act of kindness immediately became the talk of the town with people sharing pictures of the incident on WhatsApp and social networking sites.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Mulund woman’s photos go viral on Facebook, cops on the hunt for accused

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 23-year-old woman has approached Mulund police after photographs of her went viral on social media. The woman’s photographs, accompanied by her mobile number and a message saying, ‘I am free, call me for fun now’ have been posted on various groups and pages on Facebook.The victim told police that she receives numerous calls daily from unknown persons as a result. According to the police, the woman, who works with a private firm, initially ignored the barrage of calls she would receive. However, while browsing Facebook, she stumbled upon the groups and pages where her pictures were posted.The woman told her parents about the incident, who in turn lodged a complaint with the police. “I do not know who is targeting me. The incident has shaken me. I continue to receive calls despite registering a case,” said the woman.A police probe revealed that unknown people created a fake Facebook account with pictures of the victim under the name ‘Riya Paveen’. It is from this account that the accused have been posting vulgar pictures of the victim.”We have registered a case and we are doing our best to nab the culprits. We have requested the BKC cyber police to provide us with technical support. It has been established that the culprits have been using the victim’s WhatsApp profile pictures,” said an officer associated with the case.Cyber harassmentThe woman’s photographs, accompanied by her mobile number and a message saying, ‘I am free, call me for fun now’, have been posted on various groups and pages on FacebookA police probe revealed that unknown people created a fake Facebook account with pictures of the victim under the name ‘Riya Paveen’.

Will withdraw post-retirement benefits: AI warns ex-employees of speaking out against airline

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>National carrier Air India has warned its former employees of severe consequences such as withdrawal of post-retirement benefits if they speak out against the airline on social media.The Cabinet has given an in-principle approval for the disinvestment of debt-laden Air India (AI). Its employees, including those retired, are staring at an uncertain future.As many as seven unions have written to the government threatening mass protests if the airline is privatised.”It is unacceptable that a person who is availing post-retirement facilities like passage, medical etc from Air India talks against the company. Retired personnel who make such negative comments with the intention of tarnishing the image of the company will themselves be responsible for cessation of their post-retirement facilities,” according to an internal order by AI issued on June 21 with the approval of Chairman and Managing Director, Air India, Ashwani Lohani.The circular notes that the warning follows instances of its former workers seeking to “taint” the company on public fora.”It has been noticed in the recent past that a few retired personnel of Air India are tarnishing the image of the company by posting negative remarks of the company on social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook and WhatsApp and also electronic and print media,” the order read.Former employees are entitled to free flights and contributory medical allowances. An employee who retires after 30 years with the company can avail 24 free flight tickets, of which 25% can be used for international travel as well.

Debt-ridden playschool owner commits suicide

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Being unable to return the money that he had borrowed from a creditor, a 34-year-old man allegedly committed suicide by hanging himself from the ceiling fan inside a play school in north-east Delhi’s Harsh Vihar area on Monday morning. The deceased, Vikas Kumar, owned the school named Delhi Play School.The police recovered a suicide note from the location, in which Kumar alleged that he was under stress because he had borrowed Rs 5 lakh from a creditor for his cousin Pawan Kumar, who refused to return the money to him.In the note, Kumar stated: “Whenever I spoke about the money, he (Pawan) would change the topic. The lender often asked me to pay off the debt and I would feel humiliated and guilty for not being able to do so. I want strong action against Pawan.”The note further stated that he wanted his wife and children to stay with his parents after his death and not to be bothered about the debt. Before ending his life, he even sent a photo of the suicide note to all his relatives via WhatsApp. “His body was discovered by his brother Mohit Kumar, who then informed the police,” a Delhi Police officer said.

Delhi govt issues WhatsApp number for water-logging complaints

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Delhi government today issued a WhatsApp number and an email id where people can register complaints about water-logging in the national capital, ahead of the approaching monsoon rains. The Public Works Department (PWD) has also appealed to the general public to inform it about the locations which will be waterlogged during monsoon. According to the PWD, people can send complaints of water-logging with pictures through WhatsApp number – 8130188222 and email id – [email protected] Recently, PWD Minister Sateyndar Jain had directed his department to issue the same so that complaints of water-logging could be resolved at the earliest. Last month, the Delhi government had warned that if the residents suffered due to water-logging during the monsoon season, the officers concerned would face action. In a recent note to Chief Secretary M M Kutty, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had also cautioned against the desilting of drains “only on papers”, saying such anomalies must stop. Lt Governor Anil Baijal had also constituted a high-level committee headed by the PWD Secretary to look after desilting of drains and open manholes. It was aimed at better coordination between multiple agencies to tackle the water-logging problem.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

DCGA files police complaint against 34 pilots for putting ‘obscene’ messages on Whatsapp about officials!

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a rare move, aviation watchdog DGCA has filed a police complaint against 34 pilots of Jet Airways, IndiGo, SpiceJet and GoAir for allegedly posting “obscene” messages on a WhatsApp group against its officials.Acting on the complaint, Delhi Police on Tuesday questioned 13 pilots. It is rare for the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to file police complaint against pilots and in this instance, regulatory officials said some of the messages put out in a WhatsApp group were “really obscene”. DGCA Director General B S Bhullar confirmed that the regulator has filed the complaint against 34 pilots of Jet Airways, IndiGo, SpiceJet and GoAir. “DGCA has filed complaint (against the pilots) for making obscene remarks against DGCA officials on social media. Any action on that is for the police,” Bhullar told PTI. On whether any disciplinary action would be initiated against the pilots, Bhullar said it was up to the airlines to decide on whether to take action or not.Sources said some of the “obscene messages” on the WhatsApp group were also put out on the social media. A DGCA official said some pilots from Jet Airways, IndiGo, SpiceJet and GoAir created a WhatsApp group and some content shared on it was “offensive and abusive”. The official also said that unconditional apology has come from the airlines’ managements. Earlier in the day, many of the pilots, including ten from Jet Airways, were questioned at the Lodhi Colony police station here.”The pilots have been called in for questioning on the basis of a complaint by the DGCA. They have been called in for an inquiry,” a senior police official said. Thirteen pilots have been questioned, the official added. A Jet Airways spokesperson said that a few of its cockpit crew were called to record their statements by local authorities in response to a complaint and the airline is extending its full cooperation to the authorities. “The matter is under investigation and we are therefore unable to comment further. Jet Airways will take appropriate measures where necessary, as per the company policy and in compliance with local law,” the spokesperson said.An IndiGo spokesperson said appropriate action would be taken after an internal enquiry into the matter. “We are looking into the charges and extending full cooperation to the DGCA in this matter. Basis the findings of our internal enquiry, we will take appropriate action,” he said. A SpiceJet spokesperson said no pilot of the airline has written any derogatory or obscene message against any DGCA official or made any comments on the draft DGCA CAR. “One of our pilots had just forwarded some WhatsApp messages to a few friends and colleagues,” he added. GoAir said that “only one” of its pilots has been named in the complaint and the issue was “closed” now after the airline filed an unconditional apology along with the other three private carriers.Last month, the regulator proposed norms that would require notice period of one year for captains and six months for co-pilots who resign from an airline. This draft Civil Aviation Requirement (CAR) has been opposed by most of the pilots’ groupings. Meanwhile, as many as 10 pilots of the Jet Airways were kept out of flying duties for quoting incorrectly the designation of a senior DGCA official in a communique. A communication, sent to the aviation watchdog opposing the proposal to increase the notice period for pilots to one year, in which the DGCA official’s designation was written incorrectly, had backfired with an ‘arbitrary’ regulatory action against them, sources had said on Monday.

Police stops Bhim army from collecting donations in Muz’nagar

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The police here removed a camp set up for collecting donations by Dalit outfit Bhim army, which has been under scanner for its alleged role in the recent inter-caste clashes in adjoining Saharanpur. The workers of the fledging group had organised a camp at a fair in Shukartal which was removed by the police, officials said. They also distributed pamphlets and appealed to people to participate in a ‘panchayat’ to be held by the outfit on June 14 in Ratheri village here, said Superintendent of Police (Rural) Vinit Bhatnagar. The outfit workers had organised the camp for money collection and on information the police rushed to the spot and removed the boxes used for collecting the sum, the SP said. Around a month ago an FIR was registered against Bhim army’s chief, Chandrasekhar, for his alleged role in caste- based violence in Saharanpur, but he is yet to be nabbed. 30-year-old Chandrasekhar, a lawyer belonging to the Chamar community, continues to reach out to his supporters through WhatsApp and Facebook videos. Earlier this week his brother was detained by the police while he, along with his mother, was on his way to meet the press in Saharanpur’s Budh Vihar. Chandrasekhar had recently organised a massive Dalit protest in Delhi against “atrocities” by the upper caste in Saharanpur, despite being underground to evade arrest for his alleged role in inflaming caste-based violence in the district. Some people from Muzaffarnagar had also reportedly participated in the protest in the national capital. In a video shared on Facebook, he purportedly remarked that the Bhim army was not a political outfit but representative of the Dalit community.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Pune University officials still clueless over paper leaks

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>With incidents of question papers being leaked at the Krantijyoti Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPP) refusing to ebb away, university students have now alleged that the exam papers for all branches of its engineering stream have gone viral on social media.Last week, it emerged that the question papers of the second year mechanical engineering course were leaked. The leaked question papers includes the xerox copies (images) of questions and answers, and were allegedly circulating on WhatsApp. Pune university, however, has labelled this as case of copying. The university has denied the possibility of a leak, saying that the question papers are emailed to colleges an hour prior to the commencement of the written exam.The mystery as to how the xerox copies of the questions and answers were available with students still remains unanswered.

Ban on social media sites lifted after a month in J&K

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Mehbooba Mufti government has not extended the ban on social media that was imposed last month in an apparent bid to curb rumour-mongering and prevent miscreants from mobilising people for stone-pelting during encounters.”We have not extended it (the ban). It was for a month,” RK Goyal, Principal Secretary (home), Jammu and Kashmr, told DNA.On April 26, the J&K government had asked Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to stop transmission of around 22 social networking sites, including Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and WhatsApp, with immediate effect for a period of one month or till further orders.After weighing the pros and cons, the government decided to not extend the ban. What led the government to not extend the ban was the use of proxy servers by people to bypass the curbs on social media. Most of the people had downloaded VPN apps on their phones to access social media, including WhatsApp.Goyal had invoked the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885, read with the Indian Telegraph (Amendment) Rules, 2007, to ban the social media sites in Kashmir.The April 26 order had stated that as per available inputs, over a period of time, a progressively increasing trend has been witnessed with regard to the misuse of social media by elements inimical to public order and tranquility, thereby impinging on public safety, particularly in the Kashmir Valley.Valley back onlineThe social networking sites that were banned included Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, QQ, We Chat, Qzone, Tumblr, Google+, Baidu, Skype, Viber, Line, Snapchat, Pinterest, Telegram, Reddit, Snapfish, Youtube (upload), Vine, Xanga, Buzznet and Flickr.

Government sets up 8-member committee to probe into HSC paper leak

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After several question papers of the Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) exam leaked on whatsapp minutes before the exam this year, the government has now formed an 8 member committee to probe the leaks and malpractices in Class 10 and 12 board exams and to avoid such malpractices in the future.Papers of Secretarial Practice, Physics,Mathematics and Statistics scheduled in the month of February-March were doing rounds on WhatsApp a few minutes before the exam. The Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE) had refused to call it a leak as the papers were circulated only post 10.30 after most students are already in the exam hall.The board had however asked all the schools to maintain a record of all the students who enter the exam hall after 10.30. Special flying squads were also deployed in the examination centres.On Friday, the government released a GR announcing the formation of an eight member committee to investigate into the issue. “A committee has been formed to probe into the issue. The committee will also try and point factors due to which the papers are being circulated. It will also be suggesting possible remedies to the problem,” states the GR.The committee is a part of the government’s drive to fight against ‘unfair means’ under which the government aims to curb copying and cheating in all exams across the state.The committee comprises of the Commissioner (Education ), Police Commissioner, Navi Mumbai, Secretary (MPSC), Education Director, a representative from CBSE, Commissioner of the state’s examination commission, Chairperson, Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher secondary Education. The committee can also invite expert suggestions for the task.Tipping offA coaching class owner had alerted the board about papers of Secretarial Practice(SP) being leaked on WhatsApp a few minutes before exams started. This was followed by several other papers like physics and mathematics being circulated minutes before the exams.

SC questions WhatsApp on change in user rights

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Monday questioned WhatsApp’s change in its privacy policy to share user data in 2016, two years after it was acquired by social media giant Facebook.”Why did you change the policy and what is the purpose for sharing the data?” a five-judge Constitution Bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra asked WhatsApp on day one of the hearing.A five-judge constitution bench is hearing matters pertaining to a users’ right to privacy and whether WhatsApp sharing user information with its parent company Facebook, violated the citizens’ right to privacy. The bench led by Justice Misra also comprises of Justices Amitava Roy, AK Sikri, AM Khanwilkar and M Shantanagouder.When the bench was informed that Senior Advocate Harish Salve was at the International Court of Justice in the Hague representing India in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case, the apex court asked Senior Advocate KV Vishwanathan to kickstart the day-long proceedings.Representing the Internet Freedom Foundation (IFF), an intervenor in the case, Viswanathan said that unlike several other countries, India does not have any data protection legislation. In the absence of regulation, the government was obliged to protect the rights of its citizens, he implored.”Facebook and WhatsApp are the violators according to us and how to deal with them is upto the Union of India as the government has an obligation to protect the rights of its citizens,” he said. Vishwanathan added that due to the 2016 privacy policy, “I am under fear and my communication is hampered.””Life of fear, anxiety, tension and torture is not a free life. This court is not powerless to lay out a guideline for this,” he told the bench, which will continue hearing the matter on Tuesday.However, Senior Advocate Siddharth Luthra’s submissions who denied that its pre-2016 policy his client WhatsApp didn’t include data-sharing and asserted that the company never snooped on messages or shared users’ content.”What is shared is the phone number of the user, the identification number of the devise used, user’s registration detail and last access of the service by the user,” Luthra said. He added that in today’s fast rapidly developing technological world it was important to communicate with other platforms for enhanced services.”Our promise is to provide enhanced services by sharing limited information without impinging an individual’s rights,” he said.The court then made several observations and directed several questions towards the instant messaging service.”What is bothering us is that the earlier policy was a transaction between WhatsApp and the user. Now you create a mega-data base to exploit it commercially,” Justice Roy observed.Under the new policy, introduced in 2016, WhatsApp can share all its users’ data with Facebook. Alleging that the decision impinged the privacy of 160 million Indian users, two petitioners appealed against a Delhi High Court judgment which partly allowed the WhatsApp to share data.”Why do you share? You were not sharing it in 2012, then why have you done it in 2016? You say the name is not shared but the attributes of identity are shared. What is the need to share the attributes of identity? Now they (users) fear what you will share,” the bench said, adding that it breached a users’ trust.During an earlier hearing, the Union had informed a constitution bench that it was wedded to an “individual’s freedom of choice” though it was willing to debate the finer points of law pertaining to the right to privacy since the same is already under consideration by another Bench of the Court in the Aadhaar matter.The Centre added that the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) was framing a regulatory policy on data protection and was mulling over a comprehensive date protection framework.However, advocate Madhvi Divan, appearing for the petitioners, told the bench that the regulation in place was outdated by the technology, a fact acknowledged by the Centre in an affidavit.”You (Centre) have said you are making a regulation on this. Till then, as a citizenry, what is the protection,” the bench asked. “Suppose somebody has written an inland letter to X. Can Y intervene and read it? They feel your privacy clause affects their right to freedom of speech. They say fear corrodes their right.”Representing Facebook, senior advocate KK Venugopal, told the bench that “message conveyed by A to B on WhatsApp is never seen by anybody. At no time, it will be available to perusal by anybody else as it is end-to-end encrypted.”This was also challenged by Divan who told the court that Facebook and WhatsApp are foreign corporations with business across the globe where they also asserted that they would not share the user data.

SC expresses concerns if users rights are affected by Whatsapp’s 2016 privacy policy

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court today said it was “concerned” whether the citizens’ rights were being affected by WhatsApp’s 2016 privacy policy and asked the Centre what steps could it take for the “protection” of users till a regulation is framed.A five-judge constitution bench, which started hearing in detail the WhatsApp privacy policy matter, also questioned the popular instant messaging application on the sharing of user data with social networking platform Facebook when it was not being done before 2016.The apex court also said it would consider whether the court was “helpless” in framing guidelines in the absence of a regulatory regime in place to deal with the issue. “We are concerned with whether an individual’s rights are affected under Article 19(1)(g) of the Constitution due to this (privacy policy). They (WhatsApp) cannot say that users have agreed to it,” the bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra said.During the day-long hearing, WhatsApp, which was acquired by Facebook in 2014, claimed before the apex court that it was being “targeted” because it was the most successful among various similar platforms operating in India. When the court was told that WhatsApp only shares phone numbers, device ID, registration details and the last seen status, the bench shot back, “Why do you share? You were not sharing it in 2012, then why have you done it in 2016?” “You say the name is not shared but the attributes of identity is shared. What is the need to share the attributes of identity? Now they (users) fear what you will share,” the bench said.Advocate Madhvi Divan, appearing for two students Karmanya Singh Sareen and Shreya Sethi who have challenged the policy, told the bench that the Centre has acknowledged in its affidavit that the regulation in place has been outdated by the technology. “You (Centre) have said you are making a regulation on this. Till then, as a citizenry, what is the protection,” the bench, also comprising Justices A K Sikri, Amitava Roy, A M Khanwilkar and M M Shantanagoudar, asked the government.”Suppose somebody has written an inland letter to X. Can Y intervene and read it? They feel your privacy clause affects their right to freedom of speech. They say fear corrodes their right,” the bench observed. At the outset, the bench was informed that senior counsel Harish Salve, who was to argue for the petitioners, was in the Hague to represent India in the Kulbushan Jadhav matter before the International Court of Justice (ICJ).The bench then asked senior advocate K V Vishwanathan, representing the Internet Freedom Foundation (IFF), an intervenor in the case, to start the arguments. He said that unlike several other countries, India does not have any data protection legislation and the government has an obligation to protect the rights of its citizens. “Facebook and WhatsApp are the violators according to us and how to deal with them is upto the Union of India as the government has an obligation to protect the rights of its citizens,” he said, adding that due to the 2016 privacy policy, “I am under fear and my communication is hampered”.”Life of fear, anxiety, tension and torture is not a free life. This court is not powerless to lay out a guideline for this,” he told the bench, which would continue hearing the matter tomorrow. The senior counsel also argued that there were around 160 million users of WhatsApp in India and the consent taken by WhatsApp regarding its 2016 privacy policy was “deceptive”.Senior advocate K K Venugopal, appearing for Facebook, told the bench that “message conveyed by A to B on WhatsApp is never seen by anybody. At no time, it will be available to perusal by anybody else as it is end-to-end encrypted.” During the arguments, Divan told the court that Facebook and WhatsApp are foreign corporations having business all over the world and in some other countries, they have said they would not share the user data.”It is ironical that in India that too before the Supreme Court, which is the highest court of the land, they are saying so,” she said. When the bench asked the Centre to clarify its stand over the issue, senior advocate Vibha Datta Makhija, appearing for the government, said all the rights available to the citizens should be balanced. Vishwanathan argued that there was the issue of metadata in the matter as one can make out a pattern by reading out the messages exchanged in the WhatsApp groups. Metadata is a set of data which describes and gives information about other data and is collected automatically.”They (WhatsApp) are targeting us (users) by exploiting the data for commercial use. Without we being aware, several people will get to know about my health, my sexual preferences and other things which I don’t want others to know,” he said. “WhatsApp is now a Facebook family company. WhatsApp admits that Facebook will use WhatsApp messages. They are saying they have taken the consent of their users but the court will have to see whether this consent is valid in the eyes of law,” he said, adding that such service providers cannot make inroads into the fundamental rights of citizens.He also referred to an order passed by data regulatory authority in Germany’s Hamburg which had directed WhatsApp not to share the data of users. However, Venugopal said each of the countries have their own privacy policy, but India has no such policy. When the bench was told that the WhatsApp privacy policy hampered the right of communication, it said “but then it will be a privacy issue and not about communication alone. If you are keeping your messages apart, how is your communication affected.”The moment you are using Google, everything is available based on the search you make. This may not be an issue related to WhatsApp only. There has to be other service providers also. Is somebody forcing you to have it,” the bench said. The apex court further observed, “basically your identity which was restricted to WhatsApp till now, is used for Facebook or its family for commercial purposes. Whether individuals identity is liable to be shared for commercial exploitation? That is an issue.” However, Luthra maintained that no one can access the messages shared between A to B on WhatsApp as it is end-to-end encrypted.Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing WhatsApp, told the bench that despite having billions of users in the world, no complaint has been made ever that any part of encrypted messages has been accessed by anybody.”If anybody protects privacy in this country it is WhatsApp. It is better than the ‘Bhim’ app which has been launched by the government,” he said. During the hearing, Divan said that operation of WhatsApp here was subject to the Indian law and their business model is like an “economic espionage”.The bench was also told that the existing machinery was not adequate to deal with the situation and the government must come out with a proper legislation. The Centre told the bench that regulations to over-the- top (OTT) service providers like WhatsApp or Facebook needed to be regulated and the regulation needs to be fine-tuned to deal with it. The bench asked the Centre, “Do the rules (in the Information Technology Act) cover the issues which is before us”.To this, the Centre said, “some aspects are covered but not the entire issue. We have to show what is the existing legal umbrella internationally and in India on data protection. OTT data protection has to be customised and it has to be regulated in a different manner as there are complexities involved in it.” “We are in Digital India where there are commercial, social and political interests. All these three interests have to be balanced,” the government said, adding “this is a highly technical field and it is not about one app only that can guide the policy”.The court also heard arguments advanced by Facebook which has questioned the maintainability of the petition. The Centre had earlier said that a “regulatory regime” for data protection is in the offing while asserting that an individual’s freedom of choice needs to be protected. The apex court is hearing the appeal assailing the Delhi High Court verdict on the ground that no relief was granted for data shared by users after September 25, 2016 which amounted to infringement of fundamental rights under Articles 19 and 21 of the Constitution. It had on January 16 sought the responses from the Centre and Telecom Regulatory Authority of India on the plea that privacy of over 157 million Indians has been infringed by social networking sites – WhatsApp and Facebook – for alleged commercial use of personal communication.

WhatsApp privacy: SC constitution bench to hear on Monday

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A five-judge constitution bench of the Supreme Court will from Monday start examining the privacy policy of instant messaging service WhatsApp, which has come under challenge on the ground that it allegedly infringed on the fundamental rights. The crucial matter has been listed before a second constitution bench during the summer vacation. A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice J S Khehar is already hearing the triple talaq matter. The WhatsApp matter would be heard by a bench comprising Justices Dipak Misra, A K Sikri, Amitava Roy, A M Khanwilkar and M M Shantanagoudar. The Centre on April 27 had told the bench that a “regulatory regime” for data protection was in the offing as an individual’s freedom of choice needs to be protected. The government’s submission had come after the constitution bench had asked it to clarify its stand on the issue. Senior advocate Harish Salve, who was appearing for petitioners Karmanya Singh Sareen and Shreya Sethi, had placed before the bench the questions of law which were required to be dealt with in the matter. Referring to the WhatsApp’s new privacy policy, Salve had said that someone could snoop into the messages, videos and photos which a user shares or circulates on the instant messaging platform. Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing WhatsApp, had countered the submissions saying they were protecting privacy of users as they have an end-to-end encryption technology which cannot be looked at by a third person. Senior counsel K K Venugopal, representing Facebook, had also filed an application raising the preliminary issues on the maintainability of the plea. During the hearing, Salve had read out the questions of law submitted by him, which included “whether Article 21 read with Articles 14, 19 and 25 of the Constitution, confers upon all persons the right to privacy in respect of communications which are private in nature, irrespective of the medium of communication”. “Whether Article 19, read with Articles 14, 19 and 25 confer upon all persons the right to privacy in respect of all personal communications as well as personal data – financial and otherwise,” he had asked. While Article 14 relates to equality before the law, Article 19 pertains to freedom of speech and expression. Similarly, Article 21 and 25 relates to right to life and freedom of conscience and free profession, practice and propagation of religion respectively. Salve had said if the answer to the two questions were in the affirmative, the court would have to deliberate on whether any unauthorised access to such communications or personal matters or particulars by any agency without legal authority violated Article 21 read with Articles 14, 19 and 25. The other questions suggested by Salve were “Whether the right to privacy, in Article 21 read with Articles 14, 19 and 25 extends not merely to the state and its agencies, but also to private agencies who in the course of their business, have access to such information made available to them on condition of secrecy and confidentiality.” “Whether service providers, particularly monopolies and quasi monopolies, who operate services incidental and ancillary to telecommunications and in the course of which they carry messages of private persons, or have access to particulars of private persons, are under a constitutional duty to protect and preserve the privacy of private persons”. He had also said if the answer to these two questions were in the affirmative, the court has to deal with the issue “whether the state is under an obligation to protect the constitutional rights of persons, to frame appropriate rules and regulations to ensure that those agencies who operate telecommunications and allied services function in a manner that sufficiently protects and safeguards the constitutional rights to privacy of private persons”. The apex court is hearing the appeal assailing the Delhi High Court verdict on the ground that no relief was granted for data shared by users after September 25, 2016 which amounted to infringement of fundamental rights under Articles 19 and 21. The apex court had on January 16 sought the responses from the Centre and Telecom Regulatory Authority of India on the plea that privacy of over 157 million Indians has been infringed by social networking sites – WhatsApp and Facebook – for alleged commercial use of personal communication.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Rijiju unfurls 107-foot tall tricolour at Attari-Wagah border

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Union minister Kiren Rijiju today unfurled a 107-foot tall tricolour near the Indo-Pak border at Attari-Wagah here today. After unfurling the flag at the integrated checkpost here, the Minister of State for Home told reporters he was here to take stock of security arrangements, besides inspecting the checkpost and meeting with BSF officers. The minister said he would also interact with traders engaged in import and export business with Pakistan and hear out their trade-related problems. To a query on frequent incidents of stone pelting incidents in Jammu and Kashmir, Rijiju blamed “some elements sitting in Pakistan” which have created WhatsApp groups to create trouble. “Indian intelligence agencies are monitoring them very closely and will shortly do the needful in this regard,” said Rijiju. On the killing and mutilation of two soldiers, he said the government would always extend support to their families. Rijiju said a scanner will be installed at the checkpost to scan goods being imported from Pakistan.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Triple talaq: India court examines instant divorce in Islam

India’s top court is considering whether the practice known as triple talaq is fundamental to Islam.

DNA Evening Must Reads: Crisis averted in AAP, $770 billion black money entered India in 2005-2014, BJP legislator spams official WhatsApp group with…

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>1). Crisis averted in AAP: Kumar Vishwas made Rajasthan in-charge; Amanatullah Khan suspended Amid speculations of Kumar Vishwas quitting Aam Aadmi Party(AAP), the Political Affairs Committee (PAC) on Wednesday suspended its Okhla MLA Amanatullah Khan and made a decision to give Vishwas a greater responsibility ahead of Rajasthan assembly polls. Read more here.2). $770 billion black money entered India in 2005-2014: Report by Global Financial IntegrityIndia currently has no official estimates on the amount of black money in the country and abroad. Read more here.3).Soldiers mutilation: Blood samples prove killers returned to Pakistan after attackIndian summonned Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit and demanded action against Pakistani soldiers for barbaric act of mutilation of the bodies of two Indian soldiers. Read more here. 4).Ramdev’s institute to lead to wider acceptance of ayurveda: PM Narendra ModiPrime Minister Narendra Modi today rued that successive governments had sought to forget India’s traditional medicinal systems instead of promoting them. Read more here. 5).Forward gone wrong: Karnataka legislator spams official WhatsApp group with pornA BJP legislator from Karnataka allegedly posted 50 pornographic images on a WhatsApp group that comprised lawmakers, councillors and senior officers as its members. Read more here.

Mobile internet services restored in Kashmir after 2 weeks

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Mobile internet services were today restored in Kashmir, two weeks after they were suspended in view of widespread student protests in the Valley against alleged highhandedness of security forces at a college in Pulwama on April 15. Restrictions placed on accessing internet on mobile phones on April 17 have been lifted four days after the state government directed the internet service providers not to allow access to 22 websites and applications, observing they were being misused by anti-national elements to disturb peace in Kashmir. Although the order to block access to the 22 websites was issued on Tuesday, it took the service providers four days to successfully ban them. However, one can gain access to them through broadband services of state-run telecom operator BSNL and through virtual private networks. The websites and applications which have been made inaccessible in the Valley include Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Wechat, QQ, Qzone, Google Plus, Skype, Line, Pinterest, Snapchat, Youtube, Vine and Flickr. The state home department had banned them on the grounds that they were being misused by anti-national and anti-social elements for transmitting inflammatory messages. Principal Secretary Home Department R K Goyal had invoked the powers conferred on government under the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 read with Indian Telegraph (Amendment) Rules, 2007 to ban them. In a three-page order, he had said: “It is being felt that continued misuse of social networking sites and instant messaging services is likely to be detrimental to the interests of peace and tranquillity in the state.” The move had followed repeated student protests in Kashmir, which the authorities believed were fanned through social media. Some days ago, a police official had said that 350 WhatsApp groups were being used to spread rumours in Kashmir and the government had cracked down, shutting 90 per cent of these groups.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

College student from Gadchiroli arrested for harassing actress

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The police have arrested a college student from Gadchiroli district for allegedly sending objectionable messages to a city-based TV actress. Swapnil Saharay (23), the accused, found the actress’ phone number on the internet, and started sending her objectionable messages through WhatsApp, as per the complaint registered at Kurar police station in suburban Malad. Police identified the accused from his mobile number and arrested him from his residence in Gadchiroli district of eastern Maharashtra yesterday, said the deputy commissioner of police Kirankumar Chavan here. He was produced in a court here which sent him in police custody till tomorrow. Saharay has been booked under section 354-D of IPC (attempt to contact woman to foster personal interaction repeatedly despite a clear indication of disinterest by her) and under the Information Technology Act.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Woman accuses hubby of divorcing her through WhatsApp message

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A woman MBA graduate has accused her husband of divorcing her by sending a message through messaging app WhatsApp here. The woman, a resident of Tolichowki area, said she married Mudasir Ahmed Khan, who works in Saudi Arabia, in February last year. She told reporters that her husband was with her for 20 days and left for (Saudi) in March 2016. “He (Khan) was initially good with me and everything was fine and we were regularly in touch,” the woman said yesterday. “When I went to my in-laws house in September, my father-in-law locked my room and asked me to go away saying my husband has divorced me. My in-laws did not specify any reasons and just asked me to leave the house and they evicted me from the house,” she alleged. She demanded that the government should bring out a law that such people are not given bail. The message purportedly sent in the name of Khan in September, which the woman showed to media, said, “I Mudasir Ahmed Khan gave you triple talaq and removed you from the wedlock. You will soon receive the official divorce declaration paper from my end and please do not bother to come to Saudi.” The woman said she had approached the police also. When contacted, the police said they are verifying the matter. Last month, a 38-year-old man was arrested here for cheating his wife by giving her ‘talaq’ through a post card within eight days of marriage. Another man, hailing from here and based in the US, allegedly gave ‘talaq’ to his wife through WhatsApp. The case came to light in February when she approached the police alleging that her in-laws tried to murder her. In another incident, a case of cheating and harassment was registered early this month against a non-resident Indian who allegedly divorced his wife through a newspaper advertisement.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

40-year-old cab driver held for flashing before woman tourist

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 40-year-old cab driver was today arrested after he allegedly exposed himself indecently to a woman tourist, police said. The victim, who works in Bengaluru, had come to Hyderabad along with her family on a three-day trip last week and had engaged a cab from a travel agency to visit surrounding places, police said. “On the third day at the end of their tour when they were going to railway station, the lady was sitting on a seat next to the driver while her parents and relatives were at the back seat,” police said. When they reached Ramanthapur area in the city, the driver allegedly “exposed himself in an indecent manner,” said police. The driver kept on repeating the act despite the woman telling him to stop the car, a release from Hyderabad Police said today. “As the lady continued shouting and screaming, the driver stopped the car. She got down immediately and narrated the incident to her father and uncle. “When they questioned him about his act, the driver threw their luggage on the road and fled,” police said. The woman then called up the travel agency and complained against the driver. As they were to board the train, she could not complain to the police. However, she sent the details to the WhatsApp number of Hyderabad City Police requesting to take necessary action. The SHE Team of Hyderabad Police investigated the case and arrested the accused driver, the release added.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

If stones are pelted, forces will respond, says DGP Vaid

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Rising cases of stone-pelting and growing militancy in the Valley is perhaps best understood by Dr Shesh Paul Vaid. The new Director General of Police explains — in an interview to Ishfaq-ul-Hassan — just why cases of stone-pelting are increasing. Excerpts:Why are cases of stone-pelting in the Valley increasing?It is a problem of instigation. Certain people are instigating young boys who then start the stone-pelting. Soon more boys join in and the stone-pelting increases. By instigation do you mean Pakistan is responsible?We have found Facebook and WhatsApp groups that have been used for mobilising crowds for stone-pelting (during encounters to help ultras escape to Pakistan). Social media is also being misused. On the other hand, there are videos in circulation that show security forces in a bad light. What is your take on this? The videos are there. No one can deny it. If somebody pelts stones, the forces will have to respond.What about the most recent video in which a youth was tied to an Army jeep and used as a human shield?I have not seen the video.There have been different reports about the number of militants operating in Kashmir. What is your assessment?There were 214 militants at the start of the year. Around 30 to 40 militants have been killed. Now their number should be less than 200.

SC notice to WhatsApp Inc in sexual offence video blocking

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court has sought the response of US-based instant messaging application firm WhatsApp Inc in a matter relating to blocking of videos of sexual offences on social networking sites. The court, while making WhatsApp Inc a party in the matter, said that the petitioner might send a detailed e-mail to them to make a presentation, if possible through video conferencing, to assist the committee set up by the court to explore a technical solution to block such videos. The court’s order came after advocate Aparna Bhat, who is representing the petitioner, mentioned the matter before it seeking to make WhatsApp a party in the case. “On an oral request made by the counsel for the petitioner, WhatsApp Inc having office at 1601, Willow Road, Menlo Park, California 94025, United States of America is made a party-respondent,” a bench comprising Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta said. “Since the meetings pursuant to our earlier orders are being held on a day-to-day basis, (we) issue notice to WhatsApp Inc returnable on April 13,” the judges said. “In the meanwhile, the counsel for the petitioner may also send a detailed e-mail to the newly added respondent to make a presentation, if possible through video conferencing, to assist the committee,” they noted. The court had on March 22 constituted a committee comprising representatives from the Centre and Internet majors to explore a technical solution to block videos of sexual offences on social networking sites. It had given the nominees of Google India, Microsoft India, Yahoo India, Facebook and other internet intermediaries 15 days to meet and come up with a solution. The Centre had earlier informed the apex court that it would set up a specialised agency to block and curb sharing of sexual offence videos on social networking platforms. The court was hearing a letter sent to then Chief Justice of India H L Dattu by Hyderabad-based NGO Prajwala along with two rape videos in a pen drive. It had taken cognisance of its own of the letter about posting of those videos and had asked the CBI to launch an investigation with immediate effect to apprehend the culprits. The NGO’s letter had also mooted the idea of maintaining a national sex offenders’ register which should contain details of persons convicted for offences like eve-teasing, stalking, molestation and other sexual assaults. It had also suggested that the Ministry of Home Affairs should have a tie-up with YouTube and WhatsApp to ensure that such offensive videos are not uploaded and the culprits are punished.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

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