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News18 Daybreak | SC Expected to Give Verdict on Mediation in Ayodhya Case Today and Other Stories You Need to Watch Out For

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Updated:March 8, 2019, 9:50 AM IST
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What to Watch Out For

Supreme Court expected to give verdict on mediation in Ayodhya case today

The Supreme Court will on Friday decide whether to refer the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute, which has been pending for over 60 years, for mediation.

A five-Judge Constitution Bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi had reserved the verdict on referring the matter for an in-camera, court-monitored mediation process on Wednesday.

Past developments: The top court in the hearing on Wednesday had said it thinks that primarily the issue is not about 1,500 square feet land, but about religious sentiments, and stressed that it is conscious of the impact of the issue on "public sentiment" and on "body politic".

“We also know history. We all have read history. We are trying to tell that we have no control over what happened in the past. We have no control over Babar invading or who demolished what. We cannot undo that," Justice SA Bobde had said.

Justice DY Chandrachud, another judge on the bench, had, however, expressed his doubts as to how mediation will bind millions of people.

Sunni Waqf Board and Nirmohi Akhara have agreed to mediation while the third main litigant, Ram Lala Virajman, resisted it, saying their right on the land where Lord Ram was born is non-negotiable. The lawyer for Ram Lala even offered to crowd-fund for construction of a mosque elsewhere.

The UP government has, however, maintained their stand against any mediation process on the grounds that it is “both imprudent and inadvisable" in the given circumstances.

The middle path: The idea for mediation had been broached by the SC bench during the February 26 proceedings.

“Even if there is one per cent chance of amicable resolution, it should be given a try. And the mediation will be concurrent to the suit pending before the court. We are seriously considering this option. Mediation will be a confidential process too," Justice Bobde had remarked at the time.

What You May Have Missed

Sonia Gandhi to contest from Rae Bareli, Rahul from Amethi as Congress names 11 UP candidates in first list

The Congress Central Election Committee on Thursday announced that UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi will contest from Rae Bareli and Congress president Rahul Gandhi will once again be fielded from Amethi. The list which confirmed the Congress’ candidates for 15 constituencies - 11 in Uttar Pradesh and 4 in Gujarat, did not mention the newest Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. Amethi and Rae Bareli are Congress bastions in Uttar Pradesh and the only two seats won by the grand old party in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

Sonia Gandhi’s candidacy lays to rest the speculation of her forsaking the mantle to Priyanka Gandhi. It comes at a time when Congress’ is trying to stitch up strategic alliances to take on the BJP. Gandhi still has a pivotal role to play in this process as many alliance partners and potential ones would prefer to speak and negotiate with her rather than Congress president Rahul Gandhi.

Moreover, as the rumour mill has indicated, if Priyanka Gandhi had been fielded from Rae Bareli, it would have been a huge setback for the party because it would have meant that the brother-sister duo would call all the shots. Read about it here.

File image of Rahul Gandhi with Sonia Gandhi. (PTI Photo)
Pakistan seals Lahore HQ of JuD two days after ban, UN rejects Hafiz Saeed’s plea for removal of terrorist tag

Two days after banning the Jamat-ud-Dawa and its charity wing Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation, Pakistani authorities on Thursday sealed the Lahore headquarters of the two Hafiz Saeed-led outfits as part of an ongoing crackdown against terror groups in the country. "Under the National Action Plan (NAP), the government has taken complete control of the banned JuD and FIF headquarters in Lahore and Muridkey," said a statement issued by the Punjab Home department Thursday. Meanwhile, United Nations rejected Hafiz Saeed's appeal to remove his name from its list of banned terrorists. The UN decision to reject the appeal of Saeed, who is also a co-founder of the terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), came after India provided detailed evidence including "highly confidential information" about his activities, sources told PTI.

Teenager killed, over 30 injured in grenade attack at Jammu bus stand; suspect with Hizbul links held

A teenager was killed and 32 others were injured on Thursday in a grenade attack by suspected terrorists in the crowded SRTC bus stand area in the heart of the city. Police said one suspect named Yasir Bhatt, from Kulgam area of Kashmir, has been arrested for lobbing the grenade. The Inspector General of Police also said that the accused is suspected to have links with militant outfit Hizbul Mujahideen, and has confessed to the crime. This was the third grenade attack by terrorists in Jammu bus stand since May last year, viewed by security agencies as an attempt to disturb communal harmony and peace in the city.

This man who is accused of grenade explosion at Jammu bus-stand was arrested by police on March 7, 2019.

Chandrababu Naidu accuses TRS of 'mental torture' over data theft issue, urges EC to intervene

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Thursday called the Centre and the Telangana government economic terrorists and accused them of filing cases and causing "mental torture" over allegations of data theft. "Both the Government of India and the Telangana government are working as terrorists, economic terrorists. They are causing mental torture and killing the leadership,” Naidu said and further alleged that the Telangana Chief Minister was acting hand-in-glove with the YSR Congress president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy. The TDP and TRS are locked in a war of words since the case was registered on March 2 against the IT firm for alleged theft of data voters through “Seva Mitra” mobile app, used by the TDP in Andhra Pradesh.

News18 Elections Lab: YSRCP’s chances in Andhra Pradesh and 'post-war’ elections in India

    How Jagan Mohan Reddy's YSRCP emerged as the main challenger to TDP in Andhra Pradesh


A C-Voter survey last month suggested that if elections were to happen at that point in time in Andhra Pradesh, the Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party (YSRCP) would emerge as the single-largest party in the state. Whether these predictions would hold ground or not in reality, is open to debate. Read Fazil Khan’s report.

    Have military conflicts helped parties regain power? A look at post-war elections in India


Post air strikes in Pakistan's Balakot, the Opposition blamed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for seeking political mileage from Indian Air Force's action on February 26. But will the strikes and the military escalations between India and Pakistan help BJP strengthen its seat share, which has been under threat after loses in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh? Read Ghazanfar Abbas’ report.

Heat Wave bakes South India as North struggles to escape winter grip

This year, India has found itself in the throes of two diametrically opposite weather extremes. As Northern India forlornly looks at an extended winter, with a series of western disturbances in February and early March; the southern region, was in the grip of inclement heat wave conditions on March 6. On March 6 the Dharmapuri Station in Tamil Nadu recorded a maximum temperature of 40.2 degrees Celsius -- the highest temperature ever recorded in March in the area. Meanwhile, WDs or cold air storms have prolonged the winters in the Northern India. Read more about it here.

On Reel

On the occasion of Women's Day, Bollywood's eminent directors Zoya Akhtar, Alankrita Shrivastava and Nitya Mehra talk about how women should start being "unapologetically herself". Watch the video for more.

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