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47 IS terrorists tracked, brought back by security agencies
47 IS terrorists tracked, brought back by security agencies [...]
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Siddaganga Mutt seer Shivakumara Swami dies
Siddaganga Mutt seer Shivakumara Swami dies [...]
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EVM hacking throwback: The last time somebody tried to hack Electronic Voting Machine
EVM hacking throwback: The last time somebody tried to hack Electronic Voting Machine [...]
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Revealed: Spice Girls T-shirts made in factory paying staff 35p an hour
Workers producing tops sold to raise money for Comic Relief receive far below a living wage‘Inhuman conditions’: life in factory making Spice Girls T-shirtsSpice Girls T-shirts sold to raise money for Comic Relief’s “gender justice” campaign were made at a factory in Bangladesh where women earn the equivalent of 35p an hour during shifts in which they claim to be verbally abused and harassed, a Guardian investigation has found.The charity tops, bearing the message “#IWannaBeASpiceGirl”, were produced by mostly female machinists who said they were forced to work up to 16 hours a day and called “daughters of prostitutes” by managers for not hitting targets. Related: 'Inhuman conditions': life in factory making Spice Girls T-shirts Some machinists are paid 8,800Tk (£82) a month, according to a recent payslip – meaning they earn the equivalent of 35p an hour for a 54-hour week. The sum is well below the 16,000Tk unions have been demanding and falls far short of living wage estimates.Employees are forced to work overtime to hit “impossible” targets of sewing thousands of garments a day, meaning they are sometimes working 16-hour shifts that finish at midnight.Factory workers who do not make the targets are verbally abused by management and reduced to tears. Some have been made to work despite ill-health.The Spice Girls are “deeply shocked and appalled” by the Guardian’s findings, according to a spokesman for the band, who said they found it “heartbreaking to hear about the treatment that these women receive”. The band had sought assurances from Represent, the online retailer that sold the T-shirts, that the garments would be ethically made, and said the manufacturer was changed without their knowledge.• Machinists at the Interstoff factory in Gazipur stitch the garments together for about 35p an hour.• The T-shirts are shipped to the Czech Republic, where another company prints the #IWannaBeASpiceGirl slogan. Continue reading... [...]
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Rwanda, rights and the Commonwealth | Letters
The Commonwealth’s core values are compromised by allowing Rwanda to host its next summit, says Richard BourneMichela Wrong (The long read, 15 January) writes that the inquest in Randburg into the murder of Patrick Karegeya, an opponent of President Paul Kagame, should be a “reality check for western governments, development agencies and philanthropic foundations”. It should also haunt the Commonwealth, which is none of the above.In 2013, on behalf of all member states, the Queen signed a Commonwealth charter whose chapters on democracy, human rights, and freedom of expression the current Rwandan regime flagrantly defies. Yet last year in London,, which boasts of all these values, Commonwealth leaders accepted an offer from Kagame to host its next summit in 2020, making him the chair-in-office for the following two years. Continue reading... [...]
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Karnataka Congress MLA hospitalised after brawl in resort, BJP says all is not well
Karnataka Congress MLA hospitalised after brawl in resort, BJP says all is not well [...]
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AAP to contest all 13 Lok Sabha seats in Punjab, says Arvind Kejriwal
AAP to contest all 13 Lok Sabha seats in Punjab, says Arvind Kejriwal [...]
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Myanmar army kills 13 in attack on Rakhine rebels
Rakhine state has seen new levels of violence in recent weeks between the Arakan Army and security forcesMyanmar’s army says it killed 13 ethnic Rakhine fighters in counter attacks, after the well-armed group carried out deadly strikes on police posts earlier this month.Rakhine state has seen new levels of violence in recent weeks between the Arakan Army (AA) – insurgents fighting for greater autonomy for ethnic Rakhine Buddhists – and security forces. Related: Myanmar policeman shot dead in northern Rakhine state Related: 'No one wants the terrorists back': signs of Rohingya erased in Rakhine state Related: UN criticises Rohingya deal between Myanmar and Bangladesh Continue reading... [...]
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Volcano waiting to erupt in Cong-JDS alliance: Karnataka BJP chief Yeddyurappa
Volcano waiting to erupt in Cong-JDS alliance: Karnataka BJP chief Yeddyurappa [...]
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Hardeep Pandhal: the rapping artist who works with his mum
His cartoon creations unravelling identity and empire have made him a rising star. Now he’s going global – and taking Punjabi lessons so he can speak to his nearest and dearestYou can learn a lot about Hardeep Pandhal from the title of his new solo exhibition, Paranoid Picnic: The Phantom BAME. There’s the ever-present wordplay, the tense yet humorous relationship to race and identity, and even a reference to the Glasgow-based artist’s taste in video games (Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is known for having an absurdist streak amid its violence). Pandhal describes the show as “straddling” two Nottingham art venues: Primary – a repurposed school building that suits Pandhal’s DIY approach – and the more typical, white-walled New Art Exchange. That term could also apply to his work, which straddles the complexities of identity as a British-Indian man. For Pandal, identity is rife with conflict, but also something he approaches with an acidic sense of humour, to poke holes in the tension.On a new animation, Pandhal angrily appropriates a racial slur Continue reading... [...]
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India's Kumbh Mela festival – in pictures
Thought to be the world’s largest human gathering, more than 20 million Hindu pilgrims ritually bathed on the opening day of the festival Continue reading... [...]
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‘Example to the world': Sri Lanka president plans to copy Duterte's war on drugs
President Maithripala Sirisena praises Philippines over policy that has led to thousands of extrajudicial killingsSri Lanka’s president has praised his Philippines counterpart Rodrigo Duterte’s brutal war on drugs, which has taken thousands of lives, calling it an “example to the world”.In a speech during a visit to the Philippines this week, Maithripala Sirisena said he intended to replicate Duterte’s ruthless approach to tackling illegal drug use. Related: Duterte's Philippines drug war death toll rises above 5,000 Continue reading... [...]
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'I have lost my wallet and brother': reuniting at Kumbh Mela, the world's largest festival
As an estimated 15m Hindus gather at convergence of holy rivers in India, the huge lost-and-found centres go digitalDay and night, through crackling loudspeakers, the announcements ring out. “It is Babu speaking,” says a shrill voice. “I have lost my wallet and brother. Please come here the moment you hear this.”“Lal Ram is here,” a woman says a few times. “Come and collect him from the yellow tower.” Related: India's Kumbh Mela festival – in pictures Related: Why Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj is festival to end all festivals Continue reading... [...]
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SC gives protection to 2 women who entered Sabarimala temple, no action against protesters
SC gives protection to 2 women who entered Sabarimala temple, no action against protesters [...]
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TMC eyes 2019 polls, Didi says mega opposition rally will sound death knell of BJP
TMC eyes 2019 polls, Didi says mega opposition rally will sound death knell of BJP [...]
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Rahul Gandhi backs Mamata Banerjee rally: Hope we send a powerful message together
Rahul Gandhi backs Mamata Banerjee rally: Hope we send a powerful message together [...]
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Ram Rahim Singh: Indian court jails spiritual guru for life over journalist murder
Singh, who heads Sacha Sauda sect, is currently serving 20-year for rape of two followersAn Indian court sentenced a popular and flamboyant spiritual guru and three followers to life in prison on Thursday over the murder 16 years ago of a journalist who published a letter about the guru’s alleged sexual exploitation of women.The guru, who calls himself Dr Saint Gurmeet Singh Ram Rahim Insan, received the sentence through a video link from a prison where he is serving a 20-year sentence in a separate case involving the raping of two female followers. Related: Ram Rahim Singh: fatal clashes follow Indian guru's rape conviction Continue reading... [...]
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Indian sisters pretend to be boys to keep barbershop afloat
Teenagers used disguise to maintain customers after their father became illTwo teenage girls have been honoured by the Indian government after it was discovered they had pretended to be boys for four years to run their father’s barbershop when he became too ill to work.Jyoti Kumari, 18, and her 16-year-old sister, Neha, took over their father’s salon in their rural Uttar Pradesh state village after he became ill in 2014. The barbershop had initially closed but was the family’s only source of income, compelling the girls to try to run it themselves. Related: 'Poetry is the antidote': in fight against Hindu nationalism, India turns to verse Continue reading... [...]
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Maharashtra govt, LIC to compete over buying Air India building
Maharashtra govt, LIC to compete over buying Air India building [...]
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'A three-generation project': riverside development divides Indian city
The next 15 megacities #6: New facilities by the Sabarmati will provide Ahmedabad with much-needed public space, but at what cost?As the sun dips below the horizon, young lovers make themselves more comfortable on benches overlooking the Sabarmati river. Walkers stroll along the concrete promenades, and mothers enjoy a moment of respite under newly planted saplings while their children play in the adjoining gardens.Few Ahmedabad residents could have imagined this scene a couple of decades ago. Back then the Gujarati city’s tidal river banks were lined with slum housing – precariously constructed on land polluted by industrial effluent and untreated sewage, and home to some of the most marginalised communities in the city.This is a project just for beautification. No environmental assessment has been doneBy 2035 another 15 cities will have populations above 10 million, according to the latest United Nations projections, taking the total number of megacities to 48.Before: the Sabarmati river in Ahmedabad in the 1980s. After: the same spot today. Continue reading... [...]
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One in three Christians face persecution in Asia, report finds
Threat levels rise in China amid crackdown and India enters top 10 for first timeThe persecution of Christians in China is the worst it has been for more than a decade, with at least 50 million people expected to experience some form of repression this year as the government tightens its controls over religious worship, according to a global monitoring body.The crackdown on religion in China is part of a pattern of increasing Christian persecution across Asia over the past five years, Open Doors said in its 2019 World Watch List, which ranks 50 countries. One in three Christians face high levels of persecution in Asia, with India entering the top 10 for the first time. Continue reading... [...]
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Dauda dauda kar marenge: BSP leader Vijay Yadav's shocker against BJP
Dauda dauda kar marenge: BSP leader Vijay Yadav's shocker against BJP [...]
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Delhi horror: Mother and lover brutally kill 5-year-old boy, arrested
Delhi horror: Mother and lover brutally kill 5-year-old boy, arrested [...]
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Sabarimala: 2 woman devotees blocked by protesters
Sabarimala: 2 woman devotees blocked by protesters [...]
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Justin Trudeau lookalike found in Afghan talent show
Wedding singer Abdul Salam Maftoon was called the Canadian prime minister’s ‘lost twin’ after appearing on Afghan StarAn Afghan talent show contestant’s striking resemblance to Justin Trudeau has turned him into an unlikely celebrity in the war-torn country.Abdul Salam Maftoon, a wedding singer from a village in the remote and impoverished northeastern province of Badakhshan, had never even heard of his more famous doppelganger until a judge on the popular television music contest Afghan Star pointed out the uncanny likeness. Continue reading... [...]
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CBI reshuffle continues, officer probing role of Akhilesh Yadav in illegal mining case shifted
CBI reshuffle continues, officer probing role of Akhilesh Yadav in illegal mining case shifted [...]
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A miracle of democracy: 10 things about BSP chief Mayawati on her birthday
A miracle of democracy: 10 things about BSP chief Mayawati on her birthday [...]
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UP: Rape victim commits suicide in Gonda after accused get clean chit
UP: Rape victim commits suicide in Gonda after accused get clean chit [...]
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