Get Wired 17/9: Saudi Diplomat Leaves, Human Sacrifices, US Fed Rate Cut, and More

RSS breaks silence on Patel quota agitation

The RSS has criticised the Patel community’s leader Hardik Patel for his aggressive posturing at the August 25 rally and said such a movement could “destroy” the social fabric of the state. This is the first time since the Patel agitations began that the RSS has come out and talked about the movement. In addition to criticising Hardik, the RSS claimed to be in favour of the reservation of SCs and STs in the present format.

Saudi diplomat accused of rape exits India

Saudi Arabian diplomat Majad Hassan Ashoor, who has been accused of sexually assaulting two Nepali domestic workers in his Gurgaon home, has left India, according to the Ministry of External Affairs on Wednesday. Ashoor’s silent departure appears to be part of a diplomatic bargain struck between India and Saudi Arabia after the high-level intervention of National Security Adviser Ajit Doval. Activists believe that the departure of the diplomat and the return of the two domestic workers to Nepal would impede the process of justice being served.

IPS officer claims Vasundhara Raje targeted him for acting against VHP, Bajrang Dal rioters

Former Bundi SP Pankaj Chaudhary said that he was removed from the post for resisting pressure from the administration, including senior IAS and IPS officers, to let the rioters go and “register false cases” against Muslims instead. Chaudhry was issued a notice on Monday from the Rajasthan Government that accused him of not acting in time to tackle the riots in Bundi Nainwala and Khanpur on September 12, 2014. Chaudhary has stated that the chargesheet gives him the opportunity to “expose traitors”.

Ranjana Saikia quits TERI complaint committee

Ranjana Saikia, who headed the three-member internal complaints committee at The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) that found director general R.K. Pachauri guilty of sexual harassment, has resigned. The committee upheld allegations of stalking and criminal intimidation against him as well. However, it has since been reconstituted by TERI, a decision taken by Pachauri and two others, the organisation said.

“I was asked to pick up mentally ill people for human sacrifice”

M. Sevarkodiyan, a former employee of PRP Granites, alleged that the mentally ill were killed and buried by mining baron P.R. Palanichamy’s associates each time the country’s largest granite exporter expanded business. It was on Sevarkodiyan’s complaint that IAS officer U. Sagayam, who heads a Madras High Court-appointed committee tasked to probe a granite mining scam, ordered digging at a quarry last weekend. Skeletal remains of four persons, including a child, were found at the site.

SC says meat ban can’t be forced down people’s throats

On Thursday, the Supreme Court refused to hear a plea against the Bombay High Court’s ruling to stay the ban of the sale of meat during the Jain festival Paryushan Parva. “These are not issues which can be forced down somebody’s throat, there has to be a spirit of tolerance,” the court observed while hearing a petition filed by a Jain organisation to challenge the high court’s order.

Jayant Sinha says the RBI is prepared to deal with the US Fed rate cut

India has built layers of protection to deal with a possible hike in interest rates of the US Federal Reserve. This is the first hike in nine years, and RBI is well prepared to deal with its impact, said Jayant Sinha, Minister of State for Finance. He added that the goal of policymakers in India is to strengthen the domestic economy to ensure that asset markets and financial markets move in a smooth and predictable manner.

Krishna and Godavari rivers to meet

The launch of the Pattiseema lift irrigation scheme in Andhra Pradesh on Wednesday took a step forward in its long-pending goal to interlink major rivers to form a national water grid. The Pattiseema project lifts flood water from the river Godavari and pumps it into the Polavaram right canal that empties into the river Krishna in Vijayawada. Four major rivers in Andhra Pradesh are now connected to one another: Godavari-Krishna, Krishna-Pennar and Pennar-Tungabhadra.

Modi’s Canada visit cost taxpayers dearly

The PM’s three-day visit to Canada this year cost taxpayers more than 373,000 Canadian dollars ($283,100), according to a media report. The information on the expenditure includes 17,600 Canadian dollars ($13,340) on beverages such as alcohol, 80,000 Canadian dollars ($60,600) on receptions, and 106,400 Canadian dollars ($80,600) on motorcade cost, according to The Huffington Post Canada on Wednesday, citing Canada’s Access to Information Act report. Other expenditures include $10,448 Canadian dollars ($80,600) on hotel rooms, 30,000 Canadian dollars ($22,750) on audio-visual equipment, and 21,708 Canadian dollars ($16,455) on unspecified consultants.