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News 18 Afternoon Digest: Dalits Who Convert to Islam or Christianity Won't Get Quota, Says Law Minister; CJI May Retire Without a Successor and Other Stories

Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad in Rajya Sabha.

Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad in Rajya Sabha.

Here are the top stories we are covering this afternoon: Rahul Gandhi Remains Unfazed During Online Session Even as Earthquake Shakes Delhi;UP Cops Name Google CEO Sundar Pichai in FIR, Then Drop It Later; As Koshyari-Uddhav Fight Reaches Sky, New Episode on Helipad at Raj Bhavan Follows 'No Plane'Show; For First Time in 5 Years, CJI May Retire Without a Successor: Report; Dalits Who Convert to Islam or Christianity Won't Get Quota, Says Law Minister in Rajya Sabha; Facebook, Twitter CEOs in Talks to Testify at US House Hearing as Early as March, Says Report

Dalits Who Convert to Islam or Christianity Won't Get Quota, Says Law Minister in Rajya Sabha

Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad in response to a question in Rajya Sabha said that Dalit converting to Islam or Christianity cannot claim reservation benefits and it will also deprive the person the eligibility to contest parliamentary or Assembly election from constituencies reserved for Scheduled Castes (SC). READ MORE 

Facebook, Twitter CEOs in Talks to Testify at US House Hearing as Early as March, Says Report

The chief executives of Facebook Inc and Twitter Inc are in talks with House of Representatives lawmakers to testify at a hearing as early as next month, Politico reported on Friday, citing people familiar with the plans.The exact focus of the hearing is not yet clear, the report said. Facebook has discussed making its chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, available to appear before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, the report added, citing two people. Twitter and its chief, Jack Dorsey, have discussed the same, Politico said, citing one person. READ MORE 

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For First Time in 5 Years, CJI May Retire Without a Successor: Report

With Chief Justice of India, Justice S A Bobde, due to retire in just over a month, the collegium is yet to make its first recommendation of a judge to be appointed to the Supreme Court since he took office in November 2019. According to a report in The Indian Express, this will be the first time since 2015 when the CJI will have no successor. Back then, during the retirement of CJI H L Dattu there was an unprecedented stand-off between the judiciary and the government over the National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC). READ MORE 

As Koshyari-Uddhav Fight Reaches Sky, New Episode on Helipad at Raj Bhavan Follows 'No Plane' Show

Aday Governor BS Koshiyari was denied permission to use the state aircraft for an official visit to Uttarakhand, CM Uddhav Thackeray took off for his tour of Jawhar in Palghar district from the helipad at Mahalaxmi racecourse instead of the Raj Bhawan one which he has been using ever since he became CM.

As per reports the Chief Minister also used the racecourse for his landing upon his return. Amid conjectures regarding the CM's reason to abandon the Raj Bhawan helipad, a senior official stated that though the reason for this change of operations is unknown, it has nothing to do with the treatment meted out to Koshiyari a day before. READ MORE 

UP Cops Name Google CEO Sundar Pichai in FIR, Then Drop It Later

Police in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi had charged Google CEO Sundar Pichai and 17 others last week over a video that allegedly defamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi but later removed the tech giant officials' names from the FIR, police officials said today.The names of Sundar Pichai and three other top officials of Google were removed after they were found not involved in the case, a police official privy to the probe told news agency Press Trust of India over the phone. READ MORE

Rahul Gandhi Remains Unfazed During Online Session Even as Earthquake Shakes Delhi

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi remained unfazed during an online session on Friday night and continued to answer questions on a Zoom call, even as an earthquake hit Tajikistan. Several parts of North India including Delhi, Haryana, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand Jammu, and Kashmir felt tremors of the 6.3 magnitude earthquake that hit Tajikistan late on Friday night. READ MORE