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Twenty Four Killed as Police expel 3,000 Protesters of a semi-religious sect from Makeshift Camp in Mathura, India

The occupants were reportedly demanding lower gas prices and the "cancellation" of the election of various members of government

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Kusuma Sarovar Ghat, Mathura. Image source: Wikipedia
  • Clashes in northern India due to clashes between Police and sect members killed 24 people 
  • 2 police officers were killed while trying to expel 3000 followers
  • The occupants were demanding lower gas prices and the “cancellation” of the election of various members of government

At least 24 people were killed in clashes in Mathura, a city in northern India on Thursday June 2, when police tried to evacuate a park illegally inhabited by thousands of sect members.

Two police officers were among those killed while attempting to expel around 3,000 followers of a semi-religious sect who had been illegally occupying the patch of land in the city of Mathura for two years.

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Hundreds of members of the Swadhin Bharat Vidhik Satyagrah group were arrested during the evacuation, which began after authorities won a court order to remove tents and makeshift wooden structures set up by the land occupiers.

This Thursday, June 2, 2016 image made from video shows Indian policemen and paramilitary soldiers near the site of violent clashes in Mathura, India. Image source: AP
This Thursday, June 2, 2016 image made from video shows Indian policemen and paramilitary soldiers near the site of violent clashes in Mathura, India. Image source: AP

The squatters responded to the evacuation with gunfire, some of them shooting from treetops. Hand grenades were also thrown, according to local media.

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“The culprits will not be spared at any cost. The police had gone there to vacate land following court orders,” said Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav of the state of Uttar Pradesh.

The occupants were reportedly demanding lower gas prices and the “cancellation” of the election of various members of government. On social media, group members describe themselves as political revolutionaries inspired by Subhas Chandra Bose, an independence leader who went missing in a military operation in 1945.

-prepared by Saurabh Bodas (inputs from VOA), an intern at NewsGram. Twitter: @saurabhbodas96

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India Second to US in Demanding Facebook User Data, Requests Up by 37%

Globally, in the first half of 2019, government requests for user data increased by 16 per cent from 110,634 to 128,617

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India, US, Facebook
The US government sent Facebook total 50,741 requests about users' data in the same period. Pixabay

The Indian government was second to the US in requesting Facebook for access to users’ data in the first six months of this year — an increase of nearly 37 per cent from the second half (July-December period) last year.India

The Indian government sent Facebook 22,684 queries about users in the above mentioned period and the social networking giant provided data in 54 per cent of the request, according to Facebook’s Transparency Report.

The US government sent Facebook total 50,741 requests about users’ data in the same period.

Globally, in the first half of 2019, government requests for user data increased by 16 per cent from 110,634 to 128,617.

India, US, Facebook
The Indian government sent Facebook 22,684 queries about users in the above mentioned period and the social networking giant provided data in 54 per cent of the request, according to Facebook’s Transparency Report. Pixabay

“Of the total volume, the US continues to submit the largest number of requests, followed by India, the UK, Germany and France,” said Chris Sonderby, VP & Deputy General Counsel, said in a statement on Thursday.

In the US, Facebook received 50,741 requests, representing an increase of 23 per cent more requests than last half, which is consistent with trends over time.

“We always scrutinise every government request we receive for account data to make sure it is legally valid. This is true no matter which government makes the request.

“If a request appears to be deficient or overly broad, we push back, and will fight in court, if necessary. We do not provide governments with a back doors’ to people’s information,” said Sonderby.

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During the reporting period, the volume of content restrictions based on local law decreased globally by 50 per cent from 35,972 to 17,807.

“This decrease follows an unusual spike last half in which we restricted 16,600 items in India based on a Delhi High Court order. Of the total volume, 58 per cent of restrictions originated from Pakistan and Mexico,” said Facebook.

The company also identified 67 disruptions of Facebook services in 15 countries, compared to 53 disruptions in nine countries in the second half of 2018.

“During this reporting period, we took down 3,234,393 pieces of content based on 568,836 copyright reports, 255,222 pieces of content based on 96,501 trademark reports and 821,727 pieces of content based on 101,582 counterfeit reports,” informed Facebook. (IANS)