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June 2021
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Sharad Pawar, Yashwant Sinha call meet to put up united opposition        Kerala to implement tourism projects in time-bound manner: Riyas        BCCI to donate Rs 10 cr for preparations of Olympic-bound athletes        WTC Final, Day 3: NZ bowl out India for 217 in 1st innings, Jamieson picks 5 wickets        AIBEA to hold National Webinars from Jul 1 to commemorate 52nd anniversary of Bank Nationalisation        France elects regional leaders, preps for presidential vote        Argentina reports first confirmed case of ‘Black Fungus’: Reports        Bengal plans more COVID beds for women amid third wave threat        Delhi eases COVID restrictions        COVID-19: India records less than 60,000 cases after 81 days        WTC Final, Day 2: India 146/3 at stumps against NZ        Union Bank of India inks MOU with NSIC to support MSMEs with credit requirements        Seven dead, 13 injured after plane crash-lands in Russia's Kemerovo region        Ebrahim Raisi elected Iran's new president        MHA asks states, UTs to not lower guard, calibrated opening up of lockdown advised        PM congratulates LS Speaker Om Birla for completing 2 years in office        Centre invites 14 J&K leaders to attend all-party meeting on June 24        Tour de France to hold women''s cycling race in July 2022        Will always regret missing hundred on Test debut but will get one next time: Shafali Verma        Nadal, Osaka both out for Wimbledon; she'll go to Olympics        
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International News
Malaysia ex-PM Najib given 12 years in jail in 1MDB looting
 
Kuala Lumpur: A Malaysian court sentenced former Prime Minister Najib Razak to serve up to 12 years in prison on Tuesday after finding him guilty of crimes involving the multibillion-dollar looting of the 1MDB state investment fund that brought down his government in a shocking election ouster two years ago. Najib was calm and stone-faced as he became the first Malaysian leader to be convicted. He has vowed to appeal the verdict and took an oath in brief remarks from the dock before the sentencing that he was unaware of the graft. Judge Mohamad Nazlan Ghazali sentenced Najib to 12 years in jail on one count of abuse of power, 10 years each for three counts of criminal breach of trust, and 10 years each for three counts of money laundering, as well as a fine of 210 million ringgit (USD 49.4 million).

But he ordered the sentences to run concurrently, meaning that Najib will face up to 12 years in jail. The judge said the sentence was ”appropriate and proportionate” taking into account that Najib had committed the crime from a “position of trust” as prime minister, his final plea and the need to deter others from committing the same crime. The ruling in the first of his five corruption trials came five months after Najib''s Malay party returned to government as the biggest bloc in an alliance that took power from the reformist government that ousted Najib''s in 2018. Analysts said the ruling would bolster the prosecution''s case in Najib''s other trials and would signal to the business community the Malaysia''s legal system has strength in tackling international financial crimes.

But others cautioned the ruling could be overturned and his political party remains in office. "I find the accused guilty and convict the accused of all seven charges,” the judge said after spending two hours reading out an elaborate ruling. Najib''s lawyers had argued for a light sentence, saying the defence was “crippled” by the judge''s refusal to delay the sentencing arguments until next week. Prosecutors said the case had tarnished the country as a kleptocracy and sought a sentence that would remind those in high public office that “no one is above the law.” Speaking from the dock, Najib asked the court to take into account his achievements during his nine-year tenure and gave an oath that he wasn''t aware of the 42 million ringgit (USD 9.8 million) channeled into his bank accounts from SRC International, a former unit of 1MDB.

“I did not demand the 42 million, I did not plan for the 42 million, nor was the 42 million offered to me. There has been no evidence nor witness to this. And I also like to say that I have no knowledge of the 42 million," Najib insisted. Some of Najib''s supporters outside the courthouse cried when they learned of the verdict while others chanted “free bossku” and “long live bossku." The nickname meaning “my boss” was coined for Najib in his social media campaign to reinvent himself as a working-class leader. Najib, 67, has vowed to fight to the end. He has said he was misled by rogue bankers and the case against him is political. “I want justice. I want to clear my name," he wrote on Facebook late Monday.

“After this, we will go to the Court of Appeal. I am ready." A scion of one of Malaysia''s most prominent political families, he faces 42 charges in five separate trials. The judge agreed with prosecutors on Tuesday that Najib had “overarching control” of SRC, failed to rebut the allegations against him and that prosecutors had established beyond reasonable doubt that Najib misappropriated money for his own use. “The conviction would serve as a solid foundation for the prosecution in ensuing IMDB-related trials,” said Oh Ei Sun, a senior fellow with Singapore''s Institute of International Affairs. He said the ruling also would strengthen the credibility of current Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin, even though he now relies on Najib''s party for support.

Muhyiddin was fired as Najib''s deputy five years ago to the date of Tuesday''s verdict for speaking out on the 1MDB scandal. Najib''s party is the biggest bloc in the current Malay nationalist alliance that has governed since March with a shaky, wafer-thin majority in parliament. The ruling was “absolutely” good for Malaysia, said analyst Bridget Welsh, honorary research associate with University of Nottingham Malaysia. “I think that there is a sense of euphoria among the citizens that justice is being served, among the majority of Malaysians,” Welsh said.


France elects regional leaders, preps for presidential vote
Argentina reports first confirmed case of ‘Black Fungus’: Reports
Seven dead, 13 injured after plane crash-lands in Russia's Kemerovo region
Ebrahim Raisi elected Iran's new president
UN: Millions driven from homes in 2020 despite COVID crisis
Hong Kong newspaper increases print run after arrests
Back home: Biden has daunting to-do list after European tour
China successfully launches first crew to new space station
Biden, Putin discuss ambassadors, nuclear weapons and more
UK expands COVID-19 vaccination drive to cover all over-21s
China says nuclear fuel rods damaged, no radiation leak
Biden sells G-7 on global tax, but U.S. Congress is a hurdle
US Senate confirms first Muslim-American as federal judge
G-7 nations gather to pledge 1B vaccine doses for world
Indian-Americans regularly encounter discrimination: Survey
French leader Macron slapped in face on visit to small town
Up to 50 killed as express train smashes intro derailed coaches of passenger train in Pakistan''s Sindh
New Constitutional Bench formed to hear petitions against House dissolution in Nepal
Data recorder recovered from fire-stricken ship sinking off Sri Lanka
Biden widens list of Chinese firms off-limits for investment
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
George Clooney says Capitol attack put Trump family 'into the dustbin of history'
 Los Angeles: Hollywood star George Clooney has condemned the attack on the Capitol Hill in the US by  
'Mean Girls' won't be returning to Broadway
Ian McKellan is 'happy' Elliot Page came out as transgender
A R Rahman thanks fans for support during 'difficult times'
KERALA NEWS
Kerala to implement tourism projects in time-bound manner: Riyas
 Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala will complete its tourism projects in a time-bound manner by giving top p
Kerala govt orders SIT probe into ''illegal'' tree felling in Wayanad
LDF govt hand in glove with timber mafias, alleges Union Minister Muraleedharan
COVID-19:Kerala reports 14,233 new cases, 173 deaths
NATIONAL NEWS
Bengal plans more COVID beds for women amid third wave threat
 Kolkata: The West Bengal government is planning to allot more hospital beds for women as it prepares
Delhi eases COVID restrictions
MHA asks states, UTs to not lower guard, calibrated opening up of lockdown advised
PM congratulates LS Speaker Om Birla for completing 2 years in office
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