FATF puts Pak on ‘grey list’

Global anti-terror financing watchdog, Financial Action Task Force has decided to keep Pakistan on its ‘grey list’. US motion, to have Pakistan added to grey list of countries was reportedly backed by Britain, France & Germany. Pakistan was previously on the grey list from 2012 to 2015. FATF is an inter-governmental body established in 1989 to combat money laundering & terrorist financing.

RBL Bank raise stakes in SFPL to 100%

RBL Bank has fully acquired Mumbai-based microlender firm Swadhaar FinServe Pvt Ltd (SPFL)where it had 60.49% holding earlier. SFPL operates 331 branches across 16 states and two union territories and has an AUM (Assets under management) of around Rs 2,000 crore and reaches 750,000 customers. SFPL distributes loans and savings products, to low-income households and microenterprises.

FIU forwarded highest over 65K in FY18

The Financial Intelligence Unit-India (FIU), the government agency mandated on terrorist financing and money laundering, has forwarded 65,829 Suspicious Transactions Reports (STRs) during FY18 — the highest in the history. This number was over 13% higher than the record 58,223 STRs in FY17. The spurt in the number of STRs is initiated under FEMA (Foreign Exchange Management Act), 1999.

India-Nepal Joint Ex SURYA KIRAN-XIII

Exercise SURYA KIRAN-XIII, a joint military training exercise between India & Nepal culminated at Pithoragarh. The troops of both Armies participated in 14-day long joint training based on counter-terrorist operations. The training culminated with a 72-hour outdoor exercise in which troops of both contingents carried out a Cordon and Search Operation in a mock counter-insurgency village.

Forest cover stood at 21.34 percent in 2015

India’s forest cover stood at 21.34% in 2015, an increase of 1.29 percent from 2009, according to a government report on the environment. The ‘Status of Environment Report, India 2015’, was released by Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan. Mizoram with 89% has the highest forest cover among the states and Union territories in the country. Assam’s forest cover at 35% was the lowest.

Goa Celebrates its Statehood Day on May 30

Goa attained full statehood on 30th May 1987 and became India’s 25th state. Daman and Diu were separated from Goa and continue to be administered as a union territory. Earlier, Goa was a union territory, namely, Goa, Daman and Diu for all administrative and governance considerations.

Intra-state e-way bill comes into force

27 : Maharashtra, Manipur & 5 union territories have rolled out intra-state e-way bill system for movement of goods worth over Rs 50,000 within the state. With this, the number of States, where the system is being implemented will go up to 27.E-Way Bill is an electronically generated document which is required to be generated for the movement of goods of more Rs. 50,000 from one place to another

India to attend SCO anti-terror talks in Pak

India has confirmed its attendance in Shanghai Cooperation Organisation-Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure Legal Experts meeting to be held in Islamabad, Pakistan. Pakistan will be hosting its 1st SCO meeting, since the country along with India became a member of the organisation in June 2017.Experts will discuss the terror threat faced by the region & ways to enhance counter-terror efforts.

US and Philippines began military exercises

US and Philippine forces have begun their largest annual military exercises named Balikatan on 7th May. The Balikatan exercises involved combat drills in mock urban settings to train special forces in battling terrorists. In 2017, Balikatan focused mainly on honing humanitarian responses to the Philippines’ frequent natural disasters.

India to join countries having Sex Offender DB

India will join a club of 8 countries with a sexual offender database to monitor and track those convicted of such crimes.National Crime Records Bureau will maintain a national database and profile of sexual offenders. This data will be regularly shared with states and Union Territories for tracking, monitoring and investigation, including verification of antecedents by police.

MoS VK Singh to leave for Iraq

Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh will leave for Iraq to bring back mortal remains of the 39 Indians killed by Islamic State terrorists in the war-torn country.As many as 40 Indians were abducted by terror group from Mosul in Iraq in June 2014, but one of them escaped posing as a Muslim from Bangladesh. The remaining 39 Indians were taken to Badoosh and killed.

Chandra Bhushan appointed Deputy EC

Chandra Bhushan Kumar has been appointed as Deputy Election Commissioner. Bhushan is a 1995 batch IAS officer of union territories cadre. He has been appointed to the post for five years, an order issued by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT).

8th Indo- Seychelles Army exercise starts

The eighth joint military exercise between the Indian Army and Seychelles People’s Defence Forces started at Mahe Island, Seychelles.The focus of the ongoing exercise is to conduct counter-insurgency and counter-terrorist operations in semi-urban environment under the United Nations Charter. The exercise is named “Lamitye” which in the local dialect ‘Creole’, means friendship.

Pakistan to be on terror watchlist

China has voted in favour of putting Pakistan on the global terrorist-financing watchlist of Financial Action Task Force (FATF), removing its earlier objections to the move, according to reports.Pakistan is expected to be placed on the ‘grey list’ from June. The listing could make it harder and more expensive for Pakistan to borrow money from the international debt markets.

India, Russia to deepen cooperation in ICTs

India & Russia have decided to strengthen practical cooperation to prevent misuse of info & communication technologies to fight against its use in criminal & terrorist activities. To prevent possibilities of conflict appropriate mechanism for ensuring security in use of ICT should be put in place. Both sides reiterated the intention to strengthen cooperation in info sharing & capacity building

Pakistan gets 3 months reprieve

Pakistan has been granted a 3 month reprieve by the Financial Action Task Force to be placed on a terror-financing watch-list.The reprieve comes a week after Pak amended its anti-terror laws to ban groups listed as terrorists by the United Nations. Pakistan had been on the FATF watchlist for years but was removed in 2015 following “significant progress” in meeting the demands of the group.

US lists three militants as global terrorists

The US Department of Treasury has designated three individuals allegedly linked to Pakistan-based terror networks including Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Taliban as Specially Designated Global Terrorists.The move is intended to disrupt the South Asian terrorist support networks.The three include Rahman Zeb Faqir Muhammad, Hizb Ullah Astam Khan and Dilawar Khan Nadir Khan.

India slams UN Sanctions Committees

India’s Ambassador to the United Nations Syed Akbaruddin slammed the Sanctions Committees for taking decisions beyond “the gaze of public knowledge”.Calling for reforms to make their decision-making transparent, he said, “No rationale is provided for such anonymous vetoing of a submission.”This comes after China vetoed declaring Jaish-e-Mohammad chief a global terrorist, reports said.

Book on Dhaka terror attack victim released

A book, titled Abinta Kabir: Mulyabodh O Swapner Nam, on the life of Abinta Kabir, the 19-year-old Bangladeshi national killed in the terror attack in Gulshan area of Dhaka on July 1, 2016, was released.She was studying in Atlanta-based Emory University.She, along with 20 others Including an Indian Tarishi Jain were killed in the attack.

Lakhtakia appointed new NSG chief

CRPF special DG Sudeep Lakhtakia has been appointed as the new chief of National Security Guard.Lakhtakia will take over from S P Singh, the current chief of the elite counter-terror force. NSG is special forces unit under the Ministry of Home Affairs which was raised in 1984 for combating terrorist activities with a view to protect states against internal disturbances.

India, Indonesia hold 1st sec. dialogue

India and Indonesia held their first security dialogue during which they agreed on operational cooperation in security and counter-terrorism.The dialogue was led by National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs H Wiranto. Jakarta is Indonesia’s capital.

Government Restricts Use Of plastic Flag

The central government urged everyone not to use a national flag made of plastic.It also asked the states and union territories to ensure strict compliance of the Flag Code in view of the Republic Day celebration ahead. The national flag represents the hopes and aspirations of the people of the country and hence should occupy a position of honour.

Battalion of ex-Armymen to clean Ganga

The central government has sanctioned the raising of a Territorial Army battalion comprising ex-servicemen of the Army.This battalion will be raised in Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh next month as a Composite Ecological Task Force battalion of TA for National Mission for Clean Ganga. The government has allocated Rs 167 crore for the battalion under NMCG, the nodal agency for cleaning the Ganga.

Trump threatens to withhold aid to Pak

Donald Trump has opened the new year by threatening to withhold aid to Pakistan, a longtime US ally. He said that “Islamabad is giving us nothing but lies and deceit” and “thinking of our leaders as fools”.He further accused Pakistan of giving safe haven to the terrorists.

Indo-Maldives joint military exercise

8th edition of Indo-Maldives joint military exercise, ‘Ekuverin’ has began at the Maratha Light Infantry Regimental Centre (MLIRC-Belagavi).Focus of this exercise is to enhance interoperability b/w the two forces for counter-terrorist operations in semi urban environment.The exercise is being carried out by Sirmoor Rifles of Indian Army &Marine troops of Maldives National Defence Force.

Home Ministry sets up two new divisions

Union Home Ministry has formed 2 new divisions to exclusively deal with emerging security challenges such as radicalisation & cyber crime CTCR wing will focus on tracking & assessing online reach of global terrorist outfits & devising strategies to counter their propaganda CIS division will monitor online crimes & threats including cyber fraud, hacking & suggest ways to minimise & fight them

India, EU to fight against terror

India and the European Union have named three globally proscribed terrorists, Hafiz Saeed, Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi and Dawood Ibrahim in their joint statement and shown convergence in views to combat terrorism. While Saeed and Lakhvi are accused of the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, Dawood is accused of the 1993 Mumbai blasts. The announcement was made following talks at the 14th India-EU summit.

US backs India on Obor

6 : The Trump administration threw its weight behind India’s opposition to China’s ambitious OBOR initiative. U.S. said the $50-billion project passes through “disputed territory” and no country should dictate the Belt and Road initiative. The corridor passes through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, the reason India has protested to China. The area covers the Karakoram mountains, including Siachen.

SSB’s new intelligence unit

Home Minister Rajnath Singh has operationalised the Sashastra Seema Bal’s 1st ever intelligence wing. It will gather intelligence on terrorists, illegal immigrants, fake currency etc along Bhutan & Nepal borders. The wing will have 650 field and staff agents to gather actionable information. SSB was also declared as the Lead Intelligence Agency for both Indo-Nepal & Indo-Bhutan borders.

DNA databank in India

Maharashtra forensic department is in talks with a Pune-based tech company to create a DNA fingerprinting database of offenders for state through a public-private partnership. Maharashtra will be the 1st state to start DNA database which will help law enforcement agencies in tracking maoists as well as terrorists. Almost all developed countries including USA, Canada & UK have DNA database.

Uninhabited Lakshadweep island vanishes

One of the uninhabited islands that is part of Lakshadweep has vanished due to coastal erosion & another 4 such territories are shrinking fast, claims a new study. Parali I island, part of Bangaram atoll which had an area of 0.032 km2 in 1968 has been completely eroded. Study said erosion & inundation was pointing to gravity of issues associated with coastal erosion within the atoll.

US shuts Pakistan’s Habib Bank

US banking regulators has ordered Pakistan’s Habib Bank to shutter its New York office for repeatedly failing to heed concerns over possible terrorist financing & money laundering. State’s Department of Financial Services slapped a $225 million fine on the bank. Habib permitted at least 13,000 transactions that were not sufficiently screened to ensure they did not involve sanctioned countries

France appoints envoy to mediate

France has picked former ambassador Bertrand Besancenot to Saudi Arabia as a special envoy to try & help mediation efforts in Qatar crisis. France, which has close ties with Egypt & UAE while also being a major arms supplier to Qatar has called for calm in the dispute. A dispute erupted in June when Arab countries cut diplomatic, trade & travel ties over Qatar’s terrorist & extremist groups.

World Humanitarian Day

World Humanitarian Day is held every year on 19 August to pay tribute to aid workers who risk their lives in humanitarian service & to rally support for people affected by crises around the world. The inspiration for inaugural WHD came on August 19, 2003 when a terrorist attack hit the UN headquarters in Baghdad, killing 22 people. The theme of this year’s World Humanitarian Day is #NotATarget.

Providing “safe havens” to terrorists

US has listed Pakistan among the nations providing safe havens to terrorists. Report said Pak did not take sufficient action against terror groups such as LeT & JeM and allowed them to operate, train & fundraise inside the country. Annual Report on Terrorism said UN-designated terrorist Hafiz Saeed continued to address rallies despite being proscribed under provisions of Anti-Terrorism Act.

US lifts laptop ban on flights

US has lifted a ban on laptops in cabins on flights from Abu Dhabi to US, after Etihad implemented tighter security measures. Ban went into effect in March for direct flights from 10 airports in the Middle East as U.S. officials were concerned about the potential for terrorists to hide bombs inside the computers. Etihad is the only airline that operates direct flights from Abu Dhabi to US.

Salahuddin a global terrorist

US State Department has designated Syed Salahuddin, head of Kashmiri militant group Hizbul Mujahideen as a specially designated global terrorist. As a result of this US persons are prohibited from engaging in transactions with him and all of his properties and interests in property subject to US jurisdiction are blocked. The move came just hours before the first meeting b/w Modi and Trump.

Manuel Noriega passes away

Former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega passed away at the age of 83. He was a Panamanian politician and military officer. He was military dictator of Panama from 1983 to 1989 and was ousted as Panama’s dictator by an American invasion in 1989. Noriega worked with the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency and tracked money laundering in Panama’s banks and terrorist activities.

Pranab honours helicopter unit

President honoured a helicopter unit for its meritorious works, including its stellar role in confining terrorists to a restricted area during the terror attack on Pathankot. The operations by the IAF during floods in Uttarakhand, Kashmir Valley and TN will always be remembered by the entire nation. The awards of Standard and Colours are given to a unit for its meritorious service.

Pakistan Army launches ‘Radd-ul-Fasaad’

A nationwide military operation ‘Radd-ul-Fasaad’ was launched by Pakistan Army to eliminate terrorists and ensure security of Pakistan’s borders. As per the Director-General of the Inter-Services Public Relations the operation aims to eliminate threat of terrorism, consolidate gains of operations made so far and ensure strengthened security of Pakistan’s borders

Bulletproof glass around Eiffel Tower

In France, the Mayor of Paris has announced the erection of a 2.5 meter wall of bulletproof glass around the Eiffel Tower.The new security measure is meant to protect France’s most recognizable symbol in the event of a terrorist threat. An estimated 6-million people visit the Eiffel Tower every year, and it is globally recognized as a symbol of France, and Paris.

Weakest anti-money laundering mechanism

Cooperative banks have the “weakest” anti-money laundering and combating terrorist financing mechanisms, with their staff having no knowledge regarding “usefulness” of suspicious transaction report, analysis report collated by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has said. Out of the six officially valid documents (OVD), only two i.e Aadhaar and PAN card can be verified,” it observed.

Pakistan releases Indian soldier Chandu

Pakistan authorities released Indian soldier Chandu Chavan,who inadvertently had crossed the border last year. Chavan is from 37 Rashtriya Rifles, he had mistakenly crossed the de-factor border in Kashmir hours after India’s surgical strikes on terrorist bases across the LoC. He was released as a part of goodwill gesture from Pakistan.

Mother Teresa Award for Faraaz

Faraaz Ayaaz Hossain was awarded the Mother Teresa Memorial International Award for Social Justice for 2016. He was one of the three Bangladeshi hostages killed in the terrorist attack on the Holey Cafe in Dhaka’s Gulshan diplomatic zone on July 1. The award was conferred posthumously by the Harmony Foundation in Mumbai. This is the first time the award has been conferred posthumously.

Bill to declare Pak terrorist nation

Independent RajyaSabha member Rajeev Chandrasekhar introduced a private member’s bill to declare Pakistan a terrorist state. He promised to do this after Uri attack. The reason behind the bill is to put the spotlight on the need for India to take a strong view on Pakistan as a terror state and to urge the government to take appropriate action to brand Pakistan a terrorist nation.

Terrorist assault in France

The driver of a large truck mows down a crowd gathered to watch Bastille Day fireworks in Nice, France, Scores of people are killed and injured in the terrorist assault.

Defence control on Iraq & Syria terrorist

Syrian Army and popular defence forces regain control of the ancient city of Palmyra from Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist group.

GCC adopted terrorist group

The Arab League declares Lebanese movement Hezbollah a terrorist group, days after the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) adopted the same stance.

Terrorist deposing before the Indian Court

Deposing before the Indian court from the US via video conferencing, Pak-American terrorist David Coleman Headley illustrates how LeT carried out 26/11 attacks and speaks about role of ISI officials in the attacks.

Twitter blocks linked is ISIS

Twitter blocks over 1,25,000 accounts, most of them linked to ISIS, “for threatening or promoting terrorist acts” even as handles of India-centric terrorist organisations and invididuals remain untouched.

International Terrorist

Cowing under international pressure Pakistan books key handler of the 26/11 attacks, Zaki-ur Rehman Lakhvi, afresh. Lakhvi, who is declared an international terrorist by the UN, was granted bail a day earlier by a Pakistani anti-terror court.