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Australian Court Sentences Teen ‘Punji Hunters’ For Robbing Indians



An Australian court on Friday sentenced two teenagers for terrorising and robbing six Indian men over four days last year, in a racist rampage they codenamed ‘Punji hunting’. Awarding the sentences, Judge Liz Gaynor said both young men were “on the edge of a slippery slope leading into the dark pit of Port Phillip Prison”. According to ‘Herald Sun’, Julius Medina and Peter Salapura, both 19 years old had avoided jail sentencing.

Australian Court Sentences Teen 'Punji Hunters' For Robbing IndiansJudge Gaynor sentenced Medina to three years detention in a Youth Justice Centre and Salapura was sentenced to perform 624 hours of unpaid community work as part of an intensive corrections order. Gaynor said the term “Punji hunting” was appalling and degrading while stressing that the attacks were not motivated by a hatred of Indians. They were chosen because they were “soft targets”. The court noticed that the duo terrorised their victims in a four-day spree of random street attacks in December last year. Medina attacked six Indians confronting three of them with an imitation handgun and another with a knife while Salapura was involved in two robberies where he punched two Indian men, the report said.

The County Court heard it was a gang of six who drove around St Albans and Taylors Lakes suburbs here hunting for victims. Victims were robbed of their wallets and mobile phones, and few were punched and beaten with a metal bar. However, the two accused were not charged for injuring the victims, it noted.

Medina pleaded guilty to three counts of attempted armed robbery, two counts of robbery and one count of armed robbery. Salapura pleaded guilty to two counts of robbery. The judge said Medina had a terrible criminal history despite having the ongoing love and support of his parents.

“You somehow think you are a Superman who can do anything he likes and nothing will happen to him and that the only way to deal with you is to hand out the consequence of a stretch in adult jail,” she said. The judge said she took into account Salapura’s traumatic childhood and his smaller role in the robberies. Three other boys pleaded guilty in the Children’s Court, charges against another youth were discharged and an 18-year-old is awaiting trial at the County Court in August next year. The verdict comes a day after a Victorian court yesterday sentenced a teenager, who had witnessed the stabbing death of Indian student Nitin Garg in Melbourne, to 18 months’ probation. The 16-year-old was unnamed for legal reasons and had pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court to being an accessory to the murder of Garg that took place on January 2 this year.


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Pakistani Anti-graft body wants travel ban on Nawaz Sharif, kin



Nawaz sharif

Pakistan’s anti-corruption watchdog has asked authorities to place ousted premier Nawaz Sharif, his daughter and son-in-law on the Exit Control List to prevent them from leaving the country.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) sent a formal request to the ministry of interior. The interior ministry officials confirmed that the NAB wrote that names of Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Capt (retd) Muhammad Safdar should be put on the Exit Control List (ECL), which listed individuals not allowed to leave Pakistan.

The NAB argued that as the trial of the three nears its conclusion, it is feared that they would leave the country.

Earlier, a similar request to place name of finance minister Ishaq Dar on ECL was not accepted, allowing him to go to London and never return.

Sharif, 68, and his family this week filed an application with the accountability court seeking a fortnight’s exemption from personal appearance from February 19 onwards to let them go to London to see Sharif’s ailing wife. Three cases were filed against Sharif and his family last year, including Avenfield properties, Azizia & Hill Metal Establishment, and Flagship Investments.

Maryam and Safdar are accused only in Avenfield properties case. The NAB had filed two supplementary references against Sharif, his sons Hasan and Hussain regarding Al-Azizia Steel Mills & Hill Metal Establishment and Flagship Investment cases.

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Pakistan “breaches obligations’ on nuclear arms reduction, UN court told




The Hague: Pakistan is violating its “obligations” to the international community by failing to reduce its nuclear arsenal, the Marshall Islands told the UN’s highest court on Tuesday.

The small Pacific Island nation is this week launching three unusual cases against India, Pakistan and Britain before the International Court of Justice.

Majuro wants to put a new spotlight on the global nuclear threat, its lawyers said yesterday, by using its own experience with massive US-led nuclear tests in the 1940s and 1950s.

“Pakistan is in breach of its obligations owed to the international community as a whole,” when it comes to reducing its nuclear stockpile, said Nicholas Grief, one of the island nation’s lawyers.

Islamabad and its nuclear-armed neighbour India “continue to engage in a quantitative build-up and a qualitative improvement” of their atomic stockpiles, added Tony deBrum, a Marshallese government minister.

DeBrum warned that even a “limited nuclear war” involving the two countries would “threaten the existence” of his island nation people.

Pakistan and India have fought three wars since independence from Britain in 1947, two of them over the disputed Himalayan territory of Kashmir.

In 1998, the rival neighbours both demonstrated nuclear weapons capability.

The ICJ’s judges are holding hearings for the next week and a half to decide whether it is competent to hear the lawsuits brought against India and Pakistan — neither of which have signed the 1968 nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

A third hearing against Britain — which has signed the NPT — scheduled to start on Wednesday will be devoted to “preliminary objections” raised by London.

The Marshalls initially sought to bring a case against nine countries it said possessed nuclear arms: Britain, China, France, India, Israel, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia and the United States.
Israel has never admitted to having nuclear weapons.

But the Hague-based ICJ, set up in 1945 to rule in disputes between states, has only admitted three cases against Britain, India and Pakistan, because they have accepted the ICJ’s compulsory jurisdiction.

Pakistan’s lawyers did not attend Tuesday’s hearings.

It did however file a counter-claim against Majuro’s allegations saying “the court has no jurisdiction to deal with the application” and insisting that the case is “not admissible”, said ICJ President Ronny Abraham.

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Bangladesh to drop Islam as official religion following attacks on Hindus



Bangladesh to drop Islam as official religion following attacks on Hindus

New Delhi: Bangladesh is likely to drop Islam as its official religion following a series of attacks on people from other faiths in the country. The country’s Supreme Court is hearing a plea challenging the status of the official religion of the country to Islam.

Bangladesh, which was declared a secular country after its formation in 1971, was declared an Islamic country following a constitutional amendment in 1988.

According to a report in the Daily Mail, the plea has challenged the declaration of Islam as the national religion of the country.

The move is being supported by leaders from the minority communities like Hindus, Christians and Muslim minority Shiites.

Bangladesh has 90 per cent of Muslims, 8 per cent Hindus and remaining constitutes Christians and Muslim minority Shiites.

In last month, a Hindu priest was hacked to death following an attack on a temple in Panchgarh district. Two others were seriously injured in the attack. There have been several lethal attacks on writers and bloggers.

According to a report in the Independent, Islamist groups Jumatul Mujahedeen Bangladesh and Ansarullah Bangla Team are believed to have carried out at least seven attacks on foreign and minority people in Bangladesh in the past year.




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