Daily Bulletin: 18 separatists lose security; Maharashtra to block farmers' march; last day of Kulbhushan hearing at ICJ; day's top stories
Today's top stories: Security of 18 Hurriyat separatists withdrawn; fourth and final day of the Kulbhushan Jadhav hearing at the ICJ; Maharashtra government clamps down on farmers marching from Nashik to Mumbai; and more.
Thursday is the last day of the International Court of Justice's four-day public hearing in the case of Kulbhushan Jadhav
More than 50,000 farmers from across 23 districts of Maharashtra are expected to gather outside the Maharashtra Assembly
Late on Wednesday, the Jammu and Kashmir administration withdrew or downgraded the security cover provided to 18 Hurriyat separatists
Security of 18 Hurriyat leaders, 155 politicians withdrawn
The Jammu and Kashmir administration on Wednesday withdrew or downgraded the security cover provided to 18 Hurriyat separatists and 155 political leaders, including Wahid Parra, a close aide of former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, and former bureaucrat Shah Faesal.
Among the leaders whose security has been downgraded or withdrawn are Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Aga Syed Mosvi, Maulvi Abbas Ansari, Yaseen Malik, Saleem Geelani, Shahid ul Islam, Zaffar Akbar Bhat, Nayeem Ahmed Khan, Mukhtar Ahmad Waza, Farooq Ahmed Kichloo, Masroor Abbas Ansari, Aga Syed Abul Hussain, Abdul Gani Shah and Mohd Musadiq Bhat.
On Sunday, the government had announced that it will withdraw security provided to five separatist leaders, in the wake of the Pulwama terror attack in which 42 CRPF personnel were killed.
Farmers' long march: Maharashtra govt clamps down on protesters
More than 50,000 farmers from across 23 districts of Maharashtra are expected to gather outside the Maharashtra Assembly in Mumbai on 27 February, to remind the Devendra Fadnavis government of its promise to fulfil their demands following a similar protest march in March 2018.
The farmers began their protest at from Nashik on Wednesday, but the Maharashtra government has announced that it will not allow farmers to continue their march.
In a clampdown on the farmers' leaders, the police not only denied them permission to march but also started the process of stopping and fining vehicles seen ferrying farmers from various places to Nashik and Palghar.
Meanwhile, Maharashtra cabinet minister Girish Mahajan has flown down to Nashik to hold a meeting with the protesters.
Fourth and final day of ICJ hearing in Kulbhushan Jadhav case
Thursday is the last day of the International Court of Justice's (ICJ) four-day public hearing in the case of Kulbhushan Jadhav that began on Monday. India presented its arguments first on Monday and Pakistan on Tuesday. The hearing will end with Pakistan's closing arguments.
On Wednesday, India questioned the functioning of Pakistan's notorious military courts and urged the ICJ to annul Jadhav's death sentence, which it claimed was based on an "extracted confession".
Jadhav, a 48-year-old retired Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of "espionage and terrorism" after a closed trial in April 2017. India had approached the ICJ the very next month.
India submits dossier on Pak involvement in terror funding
India has submitted its dossier claiming Pakistan's involvement in the Pulwama terror attack to global terror financing watchdog, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). India seeks to blacklist Pakistan for allegedly funding terrorist activities.
Led by the Secretary of Finance and the Director General of the Counter-Terrorism Department, Islamabad will now have to explain how groups linked with globally-designated terrorist Hafiz Saeed function within the country, among other counter-terror glitches.
Narendra Modi in South Korea
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is on a two-day State visit to South Korea for talks with President Moon Jae-in. India and South Korea will aim to strengthen their special strategic partnership. Modi will also receive the 2018 Seoul Peace Prize.
He will be awarded the prize "in recognition of his dedication to improving international cooperation, raising global economic growth, accelerating human development of the people of India by fostering economic growth in the world's fastest growing large economy and furthering the development of democracy through anti-corruption and social integration efforts," a statement issued by the Ministry of External Affairs said.
Shashi Tharoor to stand trial in Sunanda Pushkar death case
Congress MP Shashi Tharoor will be tried for abetment to suicide in the case of his wife Sunanda Pushkar's death.
Earlier in February, a Delhi court had sent the case against Tharoor to a sessions court for further proceedings as offences that attract punishments of seven years or more are tried by this court.
Tharoor has been charged under Section 306 (abetment to suicide) and also under Section 498-A (husband or his relative subjecting a woman to cruelty) of the Indian Penal Code, but has not been arrested for the latter charge.
Samsung Galaxy S10 lineup announced
Following successive information leaks, Samsung has officially taken the wraps off its 10th anniversary Galaxy smartphone line and a number of accessories.
Unveiled at an event in San Francisco were the Samsung Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus smartphones, a cheaper Galaxy S10E, a foldable smartphone called the Galaxy Fold, a Galaxy Watch Active smartwatch, a Galaxy Fit smart band and Galaxy Buds wireless earbuds. The devices are expected to go on sale by 8 March.
Grammy-winning artist Dua Lipa leads Brit Awards nominations
Dua Lipa, Anne-Marie and George Ezra lead the nominations for the UK music industry's Brit Awards, set to be handed out at a ceremony featuring performances by The Greatest Showman star Hugh Jackman and DJ Calvin Harris.
Lipa, whose star status was cemented by two Grammy awards earlier this month, is up for four trophies, including Single of the Year for both "One Kiss" and "IDGAF".
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