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Extradition Of Vijay Mallya, Nirav Modi Figures In India-UK Virtual Summit



Extradition Of Vijay Mallya, Nirav Modi Figures In India-UK Virtual Summit

Extradition Of Vijay Mallya, Nirav Modi Figures In India-UK Virtual Summit

Vijay Mallya has been based in the UK since March 2016 (File)

New Delhi:

The issue of extradition of Vijay Mallya and Nirav Modi figured in a virtual summit between India and the UK on Tuesday, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi asserting that economic offenders should be sent back to the country at the earliest for trial.

India has been pressing the United Kingdom to extradite Mallya and Modi to face trial in India for their alleged involvement in cases relating to financial fraud.

At a media briefing, Joint Secretary in the Europe West division in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Sandeep Chakravorty said British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has mentioned that the authorities in the UK will do whatever possible to make sure that the economic offenders are extradited.

“They discussed the extradition of economic offenders and the prime minister (Modi) said such offenders should be sent back to India at the earliest for trial,” Chakravorty said.

“Prime Minister Johnson said he faces some legal hurdles because of the nature of the criminal justice system in the UK, but he is aware of it and they will do whatever is possible to make sure that these people are extradited at the earliest,” he added.

The joint secretary was replying to a question on the issue.

Mallya has been based in the UK since March 2016 and remains on bail on an extradition warrant executed three years ago by Scotland Yard.

In May last year, the fugitive businessman lost his appeals in the British Supreme Court against his extradition to India to face money-laundering and fraud charges.

Subsequently, India urged the UK not to consider any request for asylum from Mallya as there appeared to be no ground for his persecution in the country.

Last month, UK Home Secretary Priti Patel signed off on an order to extradite Nirav Modi, wanted in India on fraud and money-laundering charges related to the estimated USD 2-billion Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam.

In February, the Westminster Magistrates’ Court had concluded that the fugitive diamond merchant has a case to answer before the Indian courts.

To a separate question on whether the UK asked India to take back the Indians who are staying in that country illegally, Chakravorty referred to the migration and mobility partnership inked by the two countries on Tuesday.

He said India is against illegal migration as it “prejudices legal migration” and indicated that it will take back those who were not given nationality or resident permits.

“The migration and mobility partnership is a very comprehensive document. India never encourages illegal migration, we are against illegal migration because that prejudices legal migration. So the migration and mobility partnership is a comprehensive document where we will take back Indian nationals,” he said.

“It is our solemn duty. Indian nationals who are undocumented or are in distress abroad and are not being given nationality or resident permits have to be taken back and I think we will do that.

“I think this agreement systematises that but more than that, it creates opportunities for legal migration and I think that is the aspect we would like to focus on. We would be very much keen to see that the numbers that have been offered by the UK are increased in the future and a large number of Indian professionals find opportunities in the UK,” the joint secretary added.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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Title sealed at OT: Manchester City crowned Premier League champions for third time in four years



Title sealed at OT: Manchester City crowned Premier League champions for third time in four years

Manchester City clinched a third Premier League title in four years, as their arch rivals Manchester United slipped up at home against Leicester City on Tuesday.

United were the closest rivals to City but it was a matter of time for Pep Guardiola and Co. Leicester defeated a much-changed United side 2-1 for a crucial win in their top four bid.

(More to follow)

Premier League champions

Club Wins Winning years
Manchester United 13 1992–93, 1993–94, 1995–96, 1996–97, 1998–99, 1999–2000, 2000–01, 2002–03, 2006–07, 2007–08, 2008–09, 2010–11, 2012–13
Chelsea 5 2004–05, 2005–06, 2009–10, 2014–15, 2016–17
Manchester City 5 2011–12, 2013–14, 2017–18, 2018–19, 2020-21
Arsenal 3 1997–98, 2001–02, 2003–04
Blackburn Rovers 1 1994–95
Leicester City 1 2015–16
Liverpool 1 2019–20

City hosted Thomas Tuchel’s side at the Etihad at 1630 GMT just three weeks before they meet again in European club football’s showpiece match, scheduled to be played in Istanbul on May 29. But a defeat in that match meant City had to wait for their celebrations.

City swept aside Paris Saint-Germain in the semi-finals of the Champions League to give Guardiola the opportunity to win the European crown for the third time as a manager after he won it twice with Barcelona in 2009 and 2011.

But he had insisted the Champions League final and the meeting in the Premier League on Saturday were not connected.

City moved to the brink of the title with victory over Crystal Palace last weekend. They could have been crowned champions on Sunday last week had second-placed Manchester United lost to Liverpool but that game was postponed after a protest by fans against United’s American owners.

Reaching the Champions League final for the first time is a huge moment in City’s history but their star manager had said retaining the Premier League after Liverpool interrupted his side’s title series last season was his prime focus.

“Always I’ve said the Premier League is the most important title,” he had said before the match against Chelsea.

“Financially for the club, qualification for the Champions League is the most important title, maybe, but there is no doubt what is the most important thing.

“Of course the Champions League is so special, it’s nice, but this one means consistency and many things.”

City beat Tottenham with an Aymeric Laporte header to lift the League Cup last month but Chelsea ended their hopes of an unprecedented quadruple by winning 1-0 in the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley.

List of Premier League champions

Year Champions Winning manager
1992–93 Manchester United   Alex Ferguson
1993–94 Manchester United   Alex Ferguson
1994–95 Blackburn Rovers   Kenny Dalglish
1995–96 Manchester United   Alex Ferguson
1996–97 Manchester United   Alex Ferguson
1997–98 Arsenal   Arsène Wenger
1998–99 Manchester United  Alex Ferguson
1999–2000 Manchester United  Alex Ferguson
2000–01 Manchester United  Alex Ferguson
2001–02 Arsenal  Arsène Wenger
2002–03 Manchester United  Alex Ferguson
2003–04 Arsenal  Arsène Wenger
2004–05 Chelsea  José Mourinho
2005–06 Chelsea  José Mourinho
2006–07 Manchester United  Alex Ferguson
2007–08 Manchester United  Alex Ferguson
2008–09 Manchester United  Alex Ferguson
2009–10 Chelsea  Carlo Ancelotti
2010–11 Manchester United  Alex Ferguson
2011–12 Manchester City  Roberto Mancini
2012–13 Manchester United   Alex Ferguson
2013–14 Manchester City  Manuel Pellegrini
2014–15 Chelsea  José Mourinho
2015–16 Leicester City  Claudio Ranieri
2016–17 Chelsea  Antonio Conte
2017–18 Manchester City  Pep Guardiola
2018–19 Manchester City   Pep Guardiola
2019–20 Liverpool   Jürgen Klopp
2020-21 Manchester City Pep Guardiola

With AFP inputs

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Vaccines Effective Against Indian Variant Of COVID-19: WHO



Vaccines Effective Against Indian Variant Of COVID-19: WHO

Vaccines Effective Against Indian Variant Of COVID-19: WHO

WHO said that the vaccines “continue to be effective” against the B.1.617 variant.

New Delhi:

The World Health Organisation (WHO) on Tuesday said that the vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics “continue to be effective” against the B.1.617 variant of COVID-19.

“Based on what WHO knows so far as per discussions with experts globally, vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics continue to be effective against B.1.617 variant (of COVID-19), which WHO has classified as a variant of concern,” said WHO Representative to India Dr Roderico H Ofrin.

The variant first identified in India has been classified as a variant of global concern, with some preliminary studies showing that it spreads more easily, a senior WHO official informed on Monday.

The B.1.617 of the Covid-19 is the fourth variant to be designated as one of global concern that requires more tracking and analysis. The three others strains were first detected in the United Kingdom, South Africa and Brazil.

“B1617 virus variant that was first identified in India has been classified as a variant of interest by WHO,” said Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, Technical lead COVID-19 at the WHO. She added that the WHO needs much more information about this B1617 variant and all of the sub-lineages.

In an exclusive interview to ANI, World Health Organisation (WHO) Chief Scientist Soumya Swaminathan on Monday (local time) said studies were underway in India to examine the variant’s transmissibility, the severity of the disease it causes and the response of antibodies in people who have been vaccinated.

The WHO scientist called for more genome sequencing in India to get a full picture of what is going on in different parts of the country while saying that it should be hand-in-hand with clinical epidemiological studies.

“Sequencing does not give you the full picture. You do not know whether it is more transmissible, whether it causes more severe disease or what impact it has on your diagnostics,” she said

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A Belgian farmer accidentally annexed France by moving a rock. What does it say about borders?



A Belgian farmer accidentally annexed France by moving a rock. What does it say about borders?

This week, a farmer in the Belgian town of Erquelinnes caused an international ruckus when he moved a stone standing in his tractor’s path.

This stone marked the boundary between Belgium and France. By moving it 2.29 metres, he expanded Belgium’s territory.

We must assume he had driven around it before – the stone was placed on this site in 1819, as part of the proceedings that established the Franco-Belgian border in 1820 after Napoleon’s defeat.

For the farmer, it stood in the way of his tractor. For the governments of France and Belgium, it was an active international border.

This story suggests a fragility to borders that contradicts their apparent solidity in an atlas or on Google Maps. Human history is, however, full of arguments about where the edges of property lie.

‘Beating the bounds’

Nations establish their borders through treaties. Rivers are sometimes relied on to set boundaries, but even here tensions rise when there are disputes about interpretation. Is the boundary on the river banks, the deepest part of the river, or the very centre of the flow?

The fact these measurements can even be calculated is remarkable. Expecting high levels of accuracy in a map is a recent development.

The first attempts at consistent accuracy were in 19th century military maps, such as Britain’s Ordnance Survey.

Later development saw the topographical charts used by bushwalkers and mountain climbers. But only with the arrival of digital mapping did it became normal to pin-point our location on a map in everyday situations.

An early Ordnance Survey sheet, showing the United Kingdom’s County of Kent and part of the County of Essex. Photo credit: William Mudge, 1801, David Rumsey Historical Map Collection: 8534002

The precise location of boundaries was usually part of local knowledge, kept and maintained by members of the community. For centuries a practice known as “beating the bounds” was followed in parts of Great Britain, Hungary, Germany and the United States.

Members of the parish or community would walk around the edge of their lands every few years, perhaps singing or performing specific actions to help the route stick in the participants’ minds. By including new generations each time, the knowledge was passed through the community and remained active.

Beating the bounds was a tradition of spatial knowledge that carried weight – it was accepted as evidence in cases of disputed boundaries. It was also part of a larger tradition, maintaining borders through physical symbolism, whether for good or bad.

Britain has a long history of using enclosure (the fencing or hedging of land) as a means to excluding the poor from accessing common resources. In contrast, in colonial Australia, the first fences were built to protect essential garden crops from scavenging livestock.

Sometimes the importance of the border was demonstrated with an elaborate marker. The Franco-Belgian stone was carved with a date and compass points, representing not only a boundary but also the end of Napoleon’s destructive wars.

Likewise, the boundary markers of Sydney from the same period included the name of the Governor, Richard Bourke.

Manipulation and incompetence

Formality was not always required. At a local level in the Australian colonies, boundaries were often marked by painting, slashing or burning a mark into a tree. These were easy to ignore and frustrated landholders placed public notices in the newspapers cautioning against trespassing. People constantly took timber from private properties, or grazed their livestock without hesitation wherever was convenient to them.

Landholders included descriptions of their properties – detailing landmarks and neighbouring properties – in their notices, so there could be no doubt about which land was taken.

But these descriptions formed a circular argument: the potential trespasser needed to know who held each property in order to establish whose property they were about to enter. How effective they were at actually preventing trespass remains unclear.

Rivers were an obvious boundary marker, although European settlers quickly learned how to manipulate them to suit their own needs. By quietly blocking a section of river with trees and other rubbish, they could divert its route to suit their own wishes. By the time the surveyor came to verify or reassess boundaries, the landholder had been using their stolen acres for several years.

Throughout the 19th century, Australian survey departments devoted huge resources to undoing the confusion created by manipulation and incompetence in earlier years.

Markers of time

When the Belgian farmer this week got fed up with going around the stone and decided to move it, he was participating in a time-honoured tradition of manipulating impermanent boundary markers. But if he was able to move it, then who is to say it had not been moved before?

Historic boundary markers like this one have a habit of being in technically the wrong place, even if they are in precisely the right place to commemorate a moment in time.

Perhaps that is where their true significance sits.

Imogen Wegman is a Lecturer in Humanities at the University of Tasmania.

This article first appeared on The Conversation.

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