Opposition parties attack BJP at Rohith Vemula rally
Politicians took centre stage at the Justice for Rohith Vemula rally in the capital yesterday, reports The Indian Express. As students, teachers and others gathered to demand action against people charged with abetment of Dalit scholar Vemula's suicide, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kerjiwal, CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury and CPI leader D Raja all attacked the ruling BJP on the issues of Rohith Vemula and the students of JNU charged with sedition. Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav and Narmada Bachao Andolan leader Medha Patkar also spoke at the rally.
BJP gung-ho about nationalism debate in Parliament
BJP president Amit Shah is devising an 'aggressive' campaign to defend its actions in Parliament over the issues of charging JNU students with sedition, and the suicide of Dalit student Rohith Vemula, reports The Indian Express.
Party leaders say the issue has stimulated support for the BJP from all over the country, and that the protests against the party's actions come only from a minority of liberal elites, supported by the English language press.
"Get out of New Delhi and see who all are supporting us," said a senior BJP leader. "Most of those who are protesting are fringe groups."
Several suspects arrested in Pathankot case, says Pakistan
Several suspects connected with the terror attack at the Pathankot air base on 2 January have been tracked down and arrested in Pakistan's Punjab province, reports The Economic Times.
A Pakistan official from the Interior Ministry told BBC Urdu that "the raids were conducted in Sialkot, Gujranwala, Jhelum and Dina cities in Punjab province during the last two days, and some suspects were arrested."
Pakistan has also begun investigations into the five phone numbers called by the terrorists after they entered India.
Jats turned against OBCs during quota stir
The violence in the Jat quota stir in Haryana has been conducted on caste lines, reports The Indian Express. Lives and property were both targeted on the basis of caste as the Jats turned their rage onto OBCs and outsiders, say the police.
"It started with Jats torching shops belonging to Punjabis and Sainis. In retaliation, the two communities, along with others, vandalised the Chhotu Ram dharamshala of the Jat community. Following this, the Jats attacked Chhavani Mohalla, burnt shops and killed people. We have never seen this kind of violence and divide among castes in Haryana," said Jhajjar SP Sumit Kumar.
Umar, Anirban surrender to the police
JNU students Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya, charged with sedition in the JNU row, surrendered to the police late last night. The two students, both organisers of the 9 February pro-Afzal Guru rally at JNU, had been on the run since 12 February but returned to the campus on 21 February. "Friends, this is to inform you that Comrade Umar and Comrade Anirban have surrendered themselves to the police. However, they have placed their faith in the law and we hope that they will be released soon. We also hope that Comrade Kanhaiya gets bail tomorrow," JNUSU vice-president Shehla Rashid posted on Facebook.
Kanhaiya Kumar's bail plea hearing deferred to 29 February
The bail plea hearing of Jawaharlal Nehru University Students' Union president Kanhaiya Kumar was deferred to 29 February.
Kumar was arrested on charges of sedition in connection with a 9 February event at the varsity where anti-national slogans were allegedly raised. The Supreme Court had earlier refused to hear the JNUSU president's plea, saying it would set a wrong precedent for other cases.
Hours after interrogating Jawaharlal Nehru University students Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya, who have been booked on charges of sedition, the Delhi Police on Wednesday filed a status report in the High Court.
A lingerie brand uses real women as models
At a time when even Barbie comes as petite, tall and curvya lingerie making company, Aerie, the intimate-apparel brand owned by American Eagle Outfitters, is featuring women of varying body types in its marketing campaigns to promote a positive body image. To underscore the point, the company will begin a social media campaign this week to support the National Eating Disorders Association.
This is the second year Aerie has devised ads to highlight the association's eating disorders week. The current ads, featuring an average-size model, are aimed at the brand's target customers - women between the ages of 15 and 25 - and are intended to heighten awareness of the perils of bulimia and other eating disorders.
The "Strong, Beautiful, Me" campaign, which appears on Instagram and other social media is trying to promote a positive body image among women.
Tamil Areas are pockets of poverty in Sri Lanka
Regions with the highest rate of poverty in Sri Lanka are areas inhabited by Tamils, according to a study of the World Bank. The regions come under the districts of Mannar, Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi in the Northern Province; Batticaloa in the East and plantations in Badulla district (Uva Province) and Nuwara Eliya (Central Province). One Sinhala-dominated region the study has identified as having a high rate of poverty is the Monaragala district.
Going by Sri Lanka's national poverty line of about $1.50 per day (Purchasing Power Parity in 2005), the poverty headcount rates of Mullaitivu, Mannar and Kilinochchi are 28.8 per cent, 20.1 per cent and 12.7 per cent respectively.
If one were to apply the international poverty line of $2.5 per day, the figures in these three districts are 74.4 per cent, 60.9 per cent and 57.2 per cent respectively.