Summary of The Hindu 2nd APRIL 2024

Center and Cong spar over Katchatheevu issue

The controversy over ceding Katchatheevu island to Sri Lanka kept alive on Monday .

PM Modi in a post on X  accused Congress and DMK of not caring about the fishermen of TamilNadu while ceding the territory in 1974 .

External Affairs Minister ( EAM ) S. Jaishankar in BJP headquarters said that it was wrong to say that Katchatheevu was an “old issue” and was  being brought because of Lok Sabha elections .

“ It has been frequently raised in Parliament, “ Mr. Jaishankar said .

The Congress quoted a RTI reply that said earlier that the island was situated on the “ Srilankan side of the International Maritime Boundary line “ .

About the Katchatheevu island :

The island was disputed between India and Sri Lanka after independence . The  island was used both by Srilankan fisherman and fisherman from Tamil Nadu .

In 1974 Indira Gandhi government ceded the island to Sri Lanka under “ Indo Sri Lanka Maritime Agreement ” .

In a reply to the Supreme Court earlier the NDA government had said that the island can not be recaptured as it was ceded under an agreement . The Government also said that recapture can lead to war between the two counties.

Importance is present context :

Katchatheevu is westernmost island of Sri Lanka and Srilankan Navy is stationed here .

Indian fishermen cross the boundary quite frequently, which causes their arrest by Srilankan Navy . If the island were with India , India could have lots of maritime territory which could have saved fishermen facing Srilankan authorities .

Katchatheevu island is westernmost island of Srilanka

No coercive action overtax notices against Congress in view of pills : IT department

The Income Tax department  stated in the Supreme Court on Monday to not take any action on tax demands of ₹3500 crore raised in March in view of Lok Sabha polls .

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta representing the courts said , “ since elections are going on  we do not want any problem to arise from any political party ….. we will not take any coercive steps  till the case is heard again on June 24 ,2024 “

The total tax demand from the Congress Party is of ₹35,00 crore .

In a latest notice IT department had raised a demand of ₹1745 crore for 2014 -15 and 2016-17

Tax authorities have already withdrawn ₹135 crore from the party fund .

Congress lost its appeal against  Income Tax demand  in IT  Appellate Tribunal and  Delhi High Court .

Supreme Court allows Hindu worship to continue inside Gyanvapi premises

The Supreme Court on Monday allowed the Hindu priest to continue worship inside the cellar of the Tahkhana of Hindu Mosque .

While the Muslims were allowed to perform Nawaz at the premises of the site .

The court ordered that the status quo be maintained by both sides .

The Hindu side claimed that the entire area of Gyanvapi Mosque belonged to a temple of Swayambhu Lord Adi Vishveswar since Satyug .

While the Muslim side claimed it to be only a ruse to encroach into the Mosque land .

Kejriwal sent to Tihar jail for judicial custody till April 15

The rouse Avenue court on Monday sent Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to Judicial custody till April 15 , in connection with money laundering case in Delhi Excise Policy case .

Additional Solicitor General SV Raju from ED aide submitted in court that the AAP chief had not been cooperating with the investigation . Mr Kejriwal was said to be giving evasive replies .

Atishi and Saurabh Bhardwaj name in ED submission

The ED in its application also said that when Mr. Kejriwal was asked about Vijay Nair , he had stated that Mr. Nair didn’t report to him , but to Delhi cabinet minister Atishi Marlena and Saurav Bhardwaj .

Mr Nair was the communication in charge of AAP , and the first person to be arrested in Delhi Excise Policy case .

ED  said that Mr Kejriwal was shown evidence of Hawala transfer of ₹45 crore , corroborated with call records , proof of payment  and WhatsApp messages  even the Mr Kejriwal showed unawareness . The beneficiary of all these was AAP headed by Arvind Kejriwal .

Delhi Excise policy Scam

In  2021 Delhi Government formulated new rules to give licenses for liquor shops .

There were several procedural lapses in policy making .  The policy came into force in November 2021 but was scrapped in July 2022 .

In an investigation ordered by Delhi LG , ED claimed that AAP got 6% kickbacks in giving licenses to private entities .

The money was used in Delhi and Goa elections .

A South Group gained license after paying AAP and possibly BRS , ₹ 100 crore . K Kavitha was part of the group .

World

Israeli airstrike destroys  Iranian consulate in Syria

An Israeli air strike has destroyed the consular section of Israel’s embassy in Syria , killing a senior Iranian military official , Syrian state media said on Monday .

Iranian state television has said that the strike killed Iranian military advisor Gen Ali Reza Jahadi who led the elite Quds forces in Lebanon and Syria until 2006. . The Iranian ambassador said that at least seven people died in the attack .

Israel has not commented on this .

Israel has been attacking pro Iranian sites in Syria and not commenting on that even in past .

Israel withdraws from Shifa hospital after two weeks raid

After a two week raid on Gaza’s largest hospital . The Israeli military claimed that it has killed more than 200 militants and arrested hundreds more   .

The World Health Organisation ( WHO ) has claimed that   20 patients died and dozens were put at risk during the raid .

Israeli MPs give approval to bill to ban AlJazeera

The Israeli Parliament passed a bill on Monday , giving top officials authority to bar from Israel the Al Jazeera Channel .

Al Jazeera reporters have been reporting from Gaza despite military operations by Israel .

Few reporters have even died . Israel earlier accused some of reporters of being “ terror operatives “ .

Court suspends jail terms of Imran, wife in Toshakhana case

A Pakistani High court on Monday suspended the 14 year old sentence handed out to him and his wife ,  Bushra Biwi in theToshakhan corruption case .

The beleaguered couple were given 14 years of jail . The beleaguered couple were sentenced to 14 years in jail , each by accountability court  for alleged corruption in  state gifts .

Science

Team led by PRL Ahmedabad find ozone on Jupiter’s moon

An International team of scientists led by scientists from PRL ( Plasma Research laboratory ) , Ahmedabad has discovered strong evidence of the presence of ozone on Jupiter’s moon Callisto .

Callisto is the third largest moon in the solar system after Ganymede and Titan .

It is primarily composed of water ice , Rocky materials and some organic compounds .

Presence of Ozone layer means that like earth the planet is protected from Ultraviolet light this enhances the possibility of existence of life in Callisto .

Text / Context

Ladakh Protest ; a hunger for Justice

Sonam Wangchuk called off his 21 day hunger strike starting 6 March  on March 26 .  They called it “ climate fast “ . It will be continued by women , youths , monks as they will start a new 21 day fast .

All these are for the demand of sixth schedule status to Ladakh . Bringing Ladakh to sixth schedule will give it special status , will give more autonomy to make laws , outsiders will be prevented from settling , and do other industrial work in the area .

Why demand of Sixth Schedule

Rapid urbanization and Tourism growth is straining Ladakh’s resources , Particularly water , leading concerns about sustsibikuty .

Tourism has exacerbated the problem of water .

Ladakh faces challenges of climate change such as Glacial Lake Outburst Floods ( GLOF )  , permafrost degradation and rising temperature .

Despite these challenges mining , renewable energy projects continue to grow .

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