Overbridge's structural strength not a factor in stampede: Manoj Sinha
Minister of State for Railways Manoj Sinha ruled out the structural strength of the foot overbridge connecting Mumbai's Parel-Elphinstone Road stations being a factor in Friday's horrific stampede but later said his remarks were being ‘distorted’."The incident has occurred due to stampede. So I don't think that any question over the foot overbridge's strength arises."A large number of people in Mumbai commute daily. The railway has already been undertaking task of strengthening the overbridges in a serial wise manner. And we are trying to strengthen all the bridges one after the other," he said after 22 commuters were killed and many more injured in a stampede on the narrow railway foot overbridge.
Later, in a statement, Sinha said that he was deeply saddened by the deaths of innocent people in the "unfortunate incident", and that his remarks were being "distorted"."A high level probe has been ordered into the unfortunate incident. But nobody should do politics over such incidents. Some people are trying to present my statements in a distorted form. This is not right," he said.
BJP president Amit Shah would launch a 15-day statewide "padayatra" (foot march) from Payyannur in Kannur district of Kerala on October 3 to expose the ruling CPI(M)'s "red terrorism" and "political fascism" in the state, a senior leader of the saffron party said today. Besides Shah, Union ministers and other senior party leaders would also take part in the "janaraksha yatra", to be led by state party chief Kummanam Rajasekharan, said BJP national executive member V Muraleedharan.
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Union ministers Nirmala Sitharaman, Smriti Irani, Ananth Kumar, Dharmendra Pradhan, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Mahesh Sharma, V K Singh and Alphons Kannanthanam were among those expected to take part in the yatra on different days, he added. The march would crisscross through 11 of the 14 districts of the southern state, Muraleedharan, the coordinator of the yatra, said. He alleged that the CPI(M) was promoting "red terrorism" in Kerala.
Lashkar-e-Taiba founder Hafiz Saeed's legal team has sent a Rs 100 million defamation notice to Pakistan's Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif for his remarks at the Asia Society forum in New York earlier this week. Asif, who told the forum that Pakistan was not to blame for militant outfits in the country, had said: "Don't blame us for the Haqqanis and don't blame us for the Hafiz Saeeds. These people were your darlings just 20 to 30 years back. They were being dined and wined in the White House and now you say 'go to hell Pakistanis because you are nurturing these people.
"The notice, served by Advocate AK Dogar claimed that Saeed, the chief of banned Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) party was "respected as a deeply religious and devout Muslim", Dawn online reported on Saturday. It accused Asif of speaking "an absolute lie and falsehood that Hafiz Muhammad Saeed was one of those persons who had been the darlings of Americans and had been dining and wining in the White House". The notice stated that Asif made a "defamatory statement punishable under Section 500 of the Pakistan Penal Code to five years imprisonment and with (a) fine".
A 14-feet-long tunnel, dug from from the Pakistan side across the international border, was discovered on Saturday in Jammu and Kashmir's Jammu district, the BSF said. The tunnel from which, the Border Security Force (BSF) troopers said they have recovered war-like stores, was discovered a day after the its field commanders and those of Pakistan Rangers held a flag meeting in which it was mutually agreed that peace and tranquility would be maintained on the international border by both sides.
"An under construction tunnel was discovered during sanitisation operation along the international border between Vikram and Patel posts near Damana in Arnia sector. The tunnel was 14-feet-long when it was detected."The tunnel contained war-like stores those were recovered from it during the search of the tunnel indicating the presence of armed infiltrators who, however, managed to flee back," said a BSF official.
India will aim for a return to the top spot in One-Day International (ODI) rankings when they face Australia in the fifth and final match at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Ground here on Sunday. The hosts, who have already clinched the five-match ODI series with an unassailable 3-1 lead, slipped to the second spot after losing the fourth tie in Bengaluru by 21 runs on Thursday. Australia rode on an all-round show, with openers Aaron Finch and David Warner starring with the bat along side pacer Kane Richardson's three-wicket haul to clinch their first victory in the series.
India will look to get back to winning ways banking on in-form batsmen Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Kedar Jadhav. The hosts, who played pacers Mohammad Shami and Umesh Yadav in place of Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar will be forced to make changes in the bowling department which failed to look lethal in the last match. Spinners Axar Patel and Yuzvendra Chahal will be the key in the middle overs to provide important breakthroughs.