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Sudan Military, Opposition Agree To Lead Transition From Autocratic Rule: Claims Sources

The military council has previously suggested that Bashir would be tried in Sudan, where the public prosecutor has begun investigating him, according to a judicial source.

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Protesters
Sudanese protesters arrive to join the sit-in outside the army headquarters in the capital Khartoum, April 27, 2019. VOA

Sudan’s military rulers and opposition agreed in principle Saturday to the formation of a joint body to lead a transition from 30 years of autocratic rule by Omar al-Bashir, but not on the new council’s makeup, two sources said.

The two sides were holding their first formal discussions as opposition groups and protesters push for a rapid handover to civilian rule following Bashir’s fall earlier this month.

Sudan’s Transitional Military Council (TMC), which ousted and arrested Bashir after months of protests, has said it will rule for up to two years ahead of elections.

Anti-Bashir opposition groups and protesters who have kept up a sit-in outside the Defense Ministry want a civilian-led transitional council with military representation.

They continued their thousands-strong demonstration Saturday evening.

Sudanese protesters gather under a tent to protect themselves from the sun as they sit-in outside the defense ministry compound in Khartoum, Sudan, April 25, 2019.
Sudanese protesters gather under a tent to protect themselves from the sun as they sit-in outside the defense ministry compound in Khartoum, Sudan, April 25, 2019.VOA

“I came to support the sit-in for a civilian government because the army ruled Sudan since 52 years ago and the result is nothing,” said Nour el-Dayem Gaafar, a 23-year-old student from South Darfur state who had traveled by bus to the capital.

Opposition groups and activists are represented by an umbrella group called the Declaration of Freedom and Change Forces, which held two meetings with the TMC Saturday. Both sides expressed optimism after an initial session around the middle of the day.

After a second, evening session, the sources said there was agreement over the formation of a joint council, but not over how many seats either side should have.

The TMC has arrested some former officials, announced anti-corruption measures and promised to give executive authority to a civilian government. But it has signaled that ultimate authority would remain in its hands, leaving protesters frustrated.

Members of the Sudanese military sit atop a pickup as protesters rally outside the army headquarters in the capital Khartoum, April 27, 2019.
Members of the Sudanese military sit atop a pickup as protesters rally outside the army headquarters in the capital Khartoum, April 27, 2019. VOA

‘Half a revolution’

“Half a revolution is the perishing of a nation,” said Osman Abadi, a 26-year-old sit-in security supervisor draped in a Sudanese flag, who said he was staying even if negotiations between TMC and the opposition failed.

Bashir was overthrown after 16 weeks of protests triggered by a deepening economic crisis. He is being held along with other former officials at Khartoum’s Kobar prison.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has indicted Bashir for alleged war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide in the western Sudanese region of Darfur, charges he denies.

On Saturday Sadiq al-Mahdi, the veteran leader of Sudan’s opposition Umma Party, which is part of the Declaration of Freedom and Change Forces, said he thought Sudan should join the court.

“Now I have no objection to responding to its demands, and it’s necessary immediately to join (the ICC), but this position has to be coordinated with the military council,” Mahdi told reporters.

The military council has previously suggested that Bashir would be tried in Sudan, where the public prosecutor has begun investigating him, according to a judicial source.

Raid condemned

Separately, the Declaration of Freedom and Change Forces condemned a reported raid on a meeting of the Popular Congress Party, which was allied to Bashir before turning against him.

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The alliance said in a statement that though the party bore responsibility for what had happened over the past 30 years, there was “no place for the exclusion of rights by force in the nation that our fearless revolutionaries are working to promote.”

State TV reported that more than 140 people were evacuated from the hall where the meeting took place and more than 60 had suffered minor injuries. (VOA)

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Zomato Delivery Executives in Bengaluru, Mumbai Protest as Company Claims Efficiency

According to Zomato executives, their incentives have been reduced while the company has increased the travel distance to make them eligible to earn bonus points

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Zomato NRAI
Zomato in a smartphone device. Pixabay

As thousands of Zomato delivery executives in Bengaluru and Mumbai protested against the revised rate cards, the online food aggregator on Monday said that reduced average delivery time (less than 30 minutes) has enabled its delivery partners to perform more deliveries in the same amount of time.

In Bengaluru, the remuneration per delivery has been reduced to Rs 30 from Rs 40.

“Different metrics such as base pay, user satisfaction, delivery touchpoints and minimum guarantee etc. help us appreciate our delivery partners in accordance with their efforts,” a Zomato spokesperson said in a statement.

“Reduced average delivery time and increased system efficiency have enabled our delivery partners to perform more deliveries in the same amount of time,” the spokesperson added.

The food delivery platform on September 7 said that it has laid off 541 people — 10 per cent of the company’s strength — across customer, merchant and delivery partner support teams.

zomato, NRAI
Founded in 1982, the NRAI represents the interests of over 5 lakh restaurants. Pixabay

The reason behind the move is an improved Zomato platform with Artificial Intelligence (AI)-driven bots and automation in resolving customer queries that has led to an overall reduction in direct order-related support queries, the company had said.

“We regret the inconvenience caused to our users and are continuously working to resume our services in the affected areas,” said Zomato.

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According to Zomato executives, their incentives have been reduced while the company has increased the travel distance to make them eligible to earn bonus points.

The company, which is at the loggerheads with the National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) over deep discounts in its fine-dining Gold programme, claimed it has improved the speed of service resolution and now only 7.5 per cent of its orders need support (down from 15 per cent in March). (IANS)