Daily Bulletin: At least 59 killed in Amritsar train accident; Saudi Arabia admits Khashoggi died in consulate; day's top stories

At least 59 killed, 100 injured in Amritsar train tragedy

At least 59 people have been killed, and 100 more injured in Punjab's Amritsar after a speeding train on its way from Pathankot to Amritsar smashed into a massive crowd on railway tracks. The crowd was watching a burning Ravana effigy during Dussehra fireworks at a venue near the tracks on Friday at around 7 pm local time. Children are said to be amongst the dead.

It appears from multiple accounts that people didn’t hear the approaching train as the effigy of Ravana burnt and the area resonated with the sound of the crackers.

Chief minister Amarinder Singh said Punjab will remain in mourning on Saturday in view of the accident. “All offices and educational institutions will remain closed,” he said. The chief minister, who announced Rs 5 lakh for families of the dead, has cancelled his official visit to Israel in view of the situation.

Union railway minister Piyush Goyal, who is in the US, tweeted that he has cancelled all his engagements and was heading back to India.

Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu’s wife Navjot Kaur Sidhu, who was the chief guest at the celebrations, told news agency ANI that she left the venue much before the accident took place. “I received a call about the tragedy just 15 minutes after I left,” she said.

Navjot Kaur Sidhu said he had rushed to the hospital so that she could help the survivors and families of the victims.

Relatives of victims of the train accident in Amritsar at a local hospital. PTI

Relatives of victims of the train accident in Amritsar at a local hospital. PTI

Saudi Arabia admits Khashoggi died in consulate

Saudi Arabia said on Friday that journalist Jamal Khashoggi died in a fight inside its Istanbul consulate and said it had fired two senior officials over the incident, giving an account that US President Donald Trump said was credible.

Saudi Arabia’s acknowledgement that Khashoggi died came after two weeks of denials and growing demands from Western allies for an explanation over Khashoggi’s disappearance, which galvanised a global outcry and prompted some US lawmakers to call for harsh action against Riyadh.

Saudi state media said King Salman had ordered the dismissal of two senior officials over the incident: Saud al-Qahtani, a royal court advisor seen as the right-hand man to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and deputy intelligence chief Ahmed Asiri, a statement on state media said.

Sabarimala row: Travancore Devaswom Board to file affidavit in SC

The legal battle over the entry of women of menstruating age into the Sabarimala temple in Kerala appears set to be revived, as the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB) announced its intention to file an urgent affidavit in the Supreme Court.

A number of review petitions are currently pending before the apex court.

TDB president A Padmakumar said that it will approach senior lawyer Abhishek Manu Singhvi and request him to appear for it in the Supreme Court. He also said that the board will take a decision on whether to file a review petition after consultations with Singhvi.

He further said, "We want peace. We do not want the Sabarimala to become a protest site."

Padmakumar on Friday had said that the board is ready for "any type of compromise to sort this issue".

Rahul Gandhi in Telangana today

Congress president Rahul Gandhi will address two public meetings in Telangana on Saturday in the run-up to the 7 December Assembly elections, party sources said.

According to Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee official spokesperson, Shravan Dasoju, Rahul would address a public meeting at Bhainsa town of Adilabad district and another one in Kamareddy. "He will be coming to Bhainsa from Nanded in Maharashtra. After the public meetings, he will be reaching Hyderabad and hoist the Congress flag near Charminar and address the gathering on the occasion of Rajiv Gandhi Sadbhavana Yatra commemoration day," he said.

Former chief minister of undivided Andhra Pradesh K Rosaiah will be conferred the Rajiv Gandhi Sadbhavana Yatra commemoration award, the party had earlier announced.

This is the Congress president's first visit after the Election Commission announced the schedule for the Assembly polls in the state.

Trump likely to meet with Kim early next year

President Donald Trump will likely have his second meeting with Kim Jong-un early next year to continue charting a way for the North Korean leader to give up his nuclear weapons in a verifiable way.

A senior administration official told White House reporters Friday that a meeting is "likely sometime after the first of the year." The official spoke on condition of anonymity because details of the meeting have not been finalised.

Earlier this month, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made his fourth visit to North Korea, and he is coordinating with allies Japan and South Korea to arrange a second summit between Trump and Kim.

MeToo movement should not be misused; need for guidelines to be set on the issue: Bombay HC

The Bombay High Court said Friday the #MeToo campaign was only for the victims, and it should not be misused by anyone to manipulate a victim to level allegations of sexual harassment against anybody to settle "their own scores".

The remarks were made by Justice Shahrukh Kathawalla when hearing an application filed by director Vikas Bahl seeking a direction to his former partners and directors Anurag Kashyap, Vikramaditya Motwane and Madhu Mantena to refrain from speaking to the media or posting on social media about the case in which a woman employee has alleged she was sexually harassed by Bahl in 2015.

Bahl has also filed a defamation suit against Kashyap and Motwane and sought Rs 10 crore in damages from them for ruining his reputation.

The high court stated that while it was appreciative of the #MeToo campaign, at the same time it should not be misused. "The movement should not be misused. It is for the victims and not for anybody else. This is why there is a need for guidelines to be set on the issue," Justice Kathawalla said.

India vs Pakistan, Asian Champions Trophy 2018

After a thumping 11-0 win over Oman in their opening match of the Men's Hockey Asian Champions Trophy, defending champions India will be up against arch-rivals Pakistan in their second match of the tournament at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex in Muscat on Saturday.

In their first round robin match of the tournament, five-times champions India defeated the home team in a one-sided encounter.

Striker Dilpreet Singh was the star in the match against Oman, scoring a sensational hat-trick.


Updated Date: Oct 20, 2018 10:21 AM

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