Sikhs to be counted as separate ethnic group in US census

For the first time, Sikhs in the US will be counted as a separate ethnic group in the 2020 census, an organisation of the minority community said on Tuesday, describing it as
Read More

For the first time, Sikhs in the US will be counted as a separate ethnic group in the 2020 census, an organisation of the minority community said on Tuesday, describing it as a milestone moment.

This comes after several Sikh organisations in the US held meetings with the Census Bureau. Sikhs have been demanding separate coding for the last two decades so that action could be taken to address major issues such as bullying, intimidation and hate crimes against the community.

According to the United Sikhs, the current estimates of Sikhs living in the US are at 10 lakhs.

Swastika graffiti and racial marking on Gurdwara premises in Orangevale

A Sikh Gurdwara in Orangevale, California has been defaced with swastika and "white power" graffiti in an apparent hate crime. This has happened on the intervening night of January 12 and 13.
Read More

A Sikh Gurdwara in Orangevale, California has been defaced with swastika and “white power” graffiti in an apparent hate crime. This has happened on the intervening night of January 12 and 13. It was noticed on Monday morning.

Gurdwara started services in mid-December and was celebrating official grand opening according to Dimple Kaur Bhullar from the Guru Maneyo Granth Gurdwara Sahib Sangat.

In a statement, Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund, condemned the hate speech that defaced the Adware Sahib.

World’s Biggest Election Starts

India is world’s largest democracy with 90 crores (900 million) voters. This number is four times eligible voters in the United States of America, the second largest democracy. In 2019-India general election,
Read More

India is world’s largest democracy with 90 crores (900 million) voters. This number is four times eligible voters in the United States of America, the second largest democracy.

In 2019-India general election, 10 percent of world’s population is eligible to vote. There are 8.3 crores (83 million) new voters since 2014 general elections. Also there are 1.5 crores voters in the age group of 18-19 years. In last general elections, held in 2014, out of more than 83 crores (830 million) eligible voters, more than 55 crores (550 million) people voted.

The first election in India was held in1951-2

Conducting elections in India is a mammoth task. The elections are spread over 39 days from 11 April to 19 May, in seven phases. There are 10 lakh (1 million) polling stations.

The race at national level is between two major political parties – Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Indian National Congress (INC) with each having coalition with some regional parties. There are 543 elected seats in the lower house, Lok Sabha and 272 seats are needed to form the government. In 2014 elections BJP alone won 282 seats where as Congress bagged only 44 seats. It is not going to be a cake-walk for any party and is seen as a close contest.

The election results will be out on May 23.

FDA Inspector Shot Dead in Kharar

Food and Drug administrator (FDA) officer Neha Shoree was shot dead in Kharar by a chemist. The assailant, Balwinder Singh, walked into FDA office and fired four rounds at her, two of
Read More

Food and Drug administrator (FDA) officer Neha Shoree was shot dead in Kharar by a chemist. The assailant, Balwinder Singh, walked into FDA office and fired four rounds at her, two of which hit her.

Balwinder in his late forties, had a chemist shop in Morinda and his license was cancelled 10 years ago when a huge cache of intoxicants were recovered during the raid conducted by Neha.

Neha, 38 years old, is survived by husband Varun Monga and daughter. She lived in Panchkula.

Protocol on visits to Religious Shrines – Agreement in 1974

There was a bilateral agreement On September 14, 1974 between India and Pakistan on the protocol on visit to religious shrines for nationals of these countries. Fifteen locations in Pakistan and five
Read More

There was a bilateral agreement On September 14, 1974 between India and Pakistan on the protocol on visit to religious shrines for nationals of these countries.

Fifteen locations in Pakistan and five in India were later identified. The locations included in the agreement are:

India:
1. Ajmer Sharif Dargah, Ajmer, Rajasthan
2. Nizamuddin Dargah, Delhi
3. Hazrat Amir Khusro, Delhi
4. Sirhind Sharif, Fatehgarh Sahib, Punjab
5. Kalyar Sharif, Haridwar, Uttarakhand

Pakistan:
1. Shadani Darbar, Hyat Pitafi, Ghotki
2. Katasraj Dham, Lahore
3. Gurudwaras of Nankana Sahib
4. Gurudwara Panja Sahib, Rawalpindi
5. Samadhi of Ranjit Singh, Lahore
6. Gurudwara Dera Sahib, Lahore
7. Gurudwara Janam Asthan, Lahore
8. Gurudwara Deewan Khana, Lahore
9. Gurudwara Shaheed Ganj, Singhanian, Lahore
10. Gurudwara Bhai Tara Singh, Lahore
11. Gurudwara of Guru Hargobind, Mozang, Lahore
12. Birthplace of Guru Ram Das, Lahore
13. Gurudwara Cheveen Padshahi, Mozang, Lahore
14. Shrine of Data Ganj Bakhsh, Lahore
15. Mirpur Mathelo, Sindh

Kartarpur Sahib was not included in the agreement. According to the Ministry of External Affairs India, India had requested for its inclusion but it was not agreed by Pakistan

Protocol on visits to Religious Shrines

Kartarpur corridor meeting: Five key demands

Maiden Kartarpur corridor meeting concluded March 14 with following key demands from India. First - Number of pilgrims: India: Initially the number of pilgrims allowed daily should be 5,000 and 15,000 on
Read More

Maiden Kartarpur corridor meeting concluded March 14 with following key demands from India.

First – Number of pilgrims:
India: Initially the number of pilgrims allowed daily should be 5,000 and 15,000 on special occasions. Entry should be visa free.
Pakistan: No commitment yet, the proposal was 500 pilgrims per day.

Second – Days and Timing:
India: Corridor should remain open on all days of the year, from dawn to dusk.
Pakistan: Wanted to restrict opening of corridor three to four days a week.

Third – Access to people of all faiths:
India: Allow all resident Indian citizens and overseas citizenship of India (OCI) holders.
Pakistan: Initially wanted only Sikh pilgrims but agreed to all Indian citizens only.

Fourth – Encroachment of land around Gurdwara:
India: Raised objection on the rampant encroachment of land around Gurdwara.
Pakistan: No specific assurance.

Fifth – Activities of pro-Khalistan elements:
India: Raised objection of activities of pro-Khalistan elements in Gurdwaras of Pakistan.
Pakistan: Assured that there won’t be any activities to spread any anti-India agenda in the name of Khalistan.

The next meeting is on April 2 in Wagah, Pakistan.

Mass shooting at mosque in New Zealand

Several people were killed when a gunman open fire at a crowd gathered for Friday prayers in a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand. According to local media, at-least six people were killed.
Read More

Several people were killed when a gunman open fire at a crowd gathered for Friday prayers in a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand.

According to local media, at-least six people were killed. Witnesses had reported seeing people bleeding at the Al Noor mosque, located in central Christchurch along Dean Avenue.

Bangladesh cricket team, who are currently in New Zealand, had gone to mosque by bus and were about to go inside when the incident took place.

Update: The death toll has reached to 49 in the mass shooting. A man in his 20s has been arrested.

State-of-the-art passenger terminal for Kartarpur corridor

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) had approved Kartarpur corridor at the cost of Rs. 190 crore. The complex will provide all the necessary facilities to pilgrims visiting Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara located
Read More

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) had approved Kartarpur corridor at the cost of Rs. 190 crore.

The complex will provide all the necessary facilities to pilgrims visiting Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara located four miles across the border in Pakistan.

The project will be on the priority list and to be complete before the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, 12th November 2019.

Still out of bounds madrassa bombed by IAF

Reuters team was prevented from visiting the bombed site for third time citing security concerns. Pakistani official said that no visit would be possible for a few days more due to security
Read More

Reuters team was prevented from visiting the bombed site for third time citing security concerns. Pakistani official said that no visit would be possible for a few days more due to security issues.

High-resolution satellite images reviewed by Reuters on Wednesday showed the madrasa appears to be standing, virtually unchanged from an April 2018 satellite photo of the facility.

Another twist: Rafale documents not stolen

Attorney General K K Venugopal on Friday claimed the Rafale documents were not stolen from the Defence Ministry and that what he meant in his submission before the Supreme Court was that
Read More

Attorney General K K Venugopal on Friday claimed the Rafale documents were not stolen from the Defence Ministry and that what he meant in his submission before the Supreme Court was that petitioners in the application used “photocopies of the original” papers, deemed secret by the government.

“I am told the opposition has alleged that it was argued (in SC) that the files had been stolen from the defence ministry. This is wholly incorrect. The statement that files have been stolen is wholly incorrect,” he told PTI.

Earlier related story: Indian Defence Ministry needs Defence

Centralized Database for DLs and RCs

The road transport and highways ministry of India had issued notification making it mandatory for all states to follow the same norm for driver license and vehicle registration certificates from October 1,
Read More

The road transport and highways ministry of India had issued notification making it mandatory for all states to follow the same norm for driver license and vehicle registration certificates from October 1, 2019. These documents will have QR code which can be scanned by the handheld device to get the complete information about these documents from the central online database thus making past violations impossible to hide. Also these documents can be easily validated.

The state governments can add additional features to the card like chip and NFC (near-field communication).

Big Guns, Sonia and Rahul, Ready For Battle: Election 2019

Congress party has come out with the first list of candidates for upcoming Lok Sabha elections. UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Congress president Rahul Gandhi will contest Rae Bareli and Amethi seats
Read More

Congress party has come out with the first list of candidates for upcoming Lok Sabha elections. UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Congress president Rahul Gandhi will contest Rae Bareli and Amethi seats in Uttar Pradesh respectively.

The first list does not include Priyanka Gandhi.

The elections to 17th Lok Sabha are few weeks away.

Top