In Depth

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Protesters hold signs demanding justice for the deceased. (The Indian Express archive) With the Supreme Court admitting the plea challenging the army’s decision to exonerate its officers and men accused in the Pathribal fake encounter, relatives of those killed in the encounter hope their 17-year-long struggle for justice will soon come to an end. Earlier the J&K High Court had summarily dismissed a plea of the victim families against the army’s decision. The men were earlier chargesheeted by CBI for abduction and murder of five civilians in a fake encounter and destroying the evidence. There have been several attempts to

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Zareena Begum has visited the sub-centre in her area for a regular check-up. But, the centre is closed so she requests the locals to let her know once the staff comes. Photograph by Aliya Bashir Kanyari, Bandipora — At a nearby river bank, Zareena Begum, 30, is struggling to fill some clean water in a corrugated aluminum bucket. In her background, two school-going kids are roving a shikara to reach to their school. The boat is the only means of transport to this forgotten piece of land and it carries everything: daily essentials, ill to hospitals and children to school.

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Mirwaiz Umar Farooq (file photo by Shahid Tantray) The Srinagar based head priest Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, who heads a faction of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC), said on Friday that “Kashmir’s clergy has a vital role vis-à-vis the politically disputed nature of Kashmir” and that “it [the clergy] can’t remain a silent spectator on serious political issues”. This the Mirwaiz said in response to the recent contentious remarks that “the clergy is selectively raking up controversial issues on Article 370 in mosques” made by Jammu and Kashmir’s first woman Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti in the legislative assembly on June

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Suchitra Vijayan is a writer, lawyer and a political theorist. She studied Law, Political Science and International relations, and was trained as a Barrister-at-Law. She previously worked for the UN war crimes tribunal for Yugoslavia and Rwanda. She co-founded and was the Legal Director of Resettlement Legal Aid Project, Cairo that gives legal aid for Iraqi Refugees. As a graduate student at Yale, she spent two years researching and documenting stories along the contentious Durand Line. She was embedded with the ISAF forces – 172 infantry brigade, in Paktika Province, Afghanistan conducting research on key kinetic terrains in the Afghanistan-Pakistan

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Indian army soldiers carry a coffin containing the body of their colleague Sat Pal Bhasin, one of 18 soldiers killed during a terrorist ambush in Manipur on June 4, 2015. India’s northeastern states are now the most unsafe conflict theatre for security forces with 41 deaths this year. These states accounted for 23 deaths of security personnel in 2014, according to data compiled by the South Asia Terrorism Portal. Eighteen Indian army soldiers were killed and 11 injured in Manipur’s Chandel district in a terrorist ambush on June 4, 2015, the worst-such attack in two decades. Source: South Asia Terrorism

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Driven by a shortage of prosecutors, judges and courts and—among other reasons—slow procedures, there are more people under trial in India than there are people in the Netherlands or Kazakhstan.

A cameraman setting up his equipment in front of the Supreme Court in Delhi in February 2014. For the 13 years the Salman Khan hit-and-run case was in trial, it was one of 18.5 million criminal cases pending in India’s district and lower courts, and the 50-year-old Bollywood star was one of 22.2 million people under trial. Driven by a shortage of prosecutors, judges and courts and—among other reasons—slow procedures, there are more people under trial in India than there are people in the Netherlands or Kazakhstan. In 2013, the cases of as many as 85% of people put on

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The general election in United Kingdom is now merely days away. Polling numbers for the two largest parties, Labour and the Conservatives, remain stubbornly close meaning that the most likely outcome is a hung parliament, with no-one commanding an overall majority for the 650 seats on offer in the House of Commons. Five years ago the same result ushered in a coalition government between David Cameron’s Conservative Party and Nick Clegg’s Liberal Democrats. The Conservative-led Coalition took power amid a perilous financial climate and quickly set about establishing a programme of spending cuts that has spared all but a few

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"The potential human cost of the death penalty in a country with an imperfect and corruptible judicial system, and whether the committing of any crime can ever justify forfeiting their right to life."

Messages from the condemned prisoners on the back of one of Sukumaran’s final paintings. One of Sukumaran’s final requests was that he be allowed to continue to paint until the very end. Despite immense pressure from the international community, the Indonesian government executed eight death row prisoners in the early hours of 29 April morning on Nusakambangan prison island near Cilacap in Central Java. This second wave of killings followed the execution of six drug convicts earlier this year. Mary Jane Fiesta Veloso of the Philippines was spared at the very last minute after a woman who allegedly recruited her

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Guwahati and Srinagar fall in what is called “very severe intensity zone”, or zone V, the highest-risk earthquake zone.

A man walks past houses in Bhaktapur, Nepal that were damaged in Saturday’s earthquake. Guwahati and Srinagar are the two Indian cities at highest risk of being devastated by an earthquake, with 36 other cities in areas prone to earthquakes, according to government data. Guwahati and Srinagar fall in what is called “very severe intensity zone”, or zone V, the highest-risk earthquake zone. Eight cities, including Delhi, fall in the “severe intensity zone” or zone IV, according to a seismic zoning map issued by the Bureau of Indian Standards and quoted in this National Disaster Management (NDM) report. The other

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Six months after the formation of Afghanistan’s National Unity Government, security remains the number one concern in Kabul. But while relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan have improved, internal divisions threaten the weak coalition. Mark Mistry assesses the status quo.

Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani at a meeting in Panjshir Province, Afghanistan on July 5, 2011. (Photograph by S.K. Vemmer/Department of State) Numerous attacks over the past few weeks have signalled the beginning of the traditional summer ‘fighting season,’ with the Taliban making its presence felt throughout the country. Scores have been killed and injured, including in the capital, Kabul, where the remaining expatriates cower behind their blast walls and obey the strict instructions of their security advisers not to venture outside. For citizens, life is bleak, with the United Nations reporting 2014 as the deadliest since it began recording civilian

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