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Shocking Sexism’: Outrage in Ukraine After Female Soldiers Forced to Parade in Heels, Twitter Appalled

Shocking Sexism’: Outrage in Ukraine After Female Soldiers Forced to Parade in Heels, Twitter Appalled

Kiev: People around the world are appalled and furious after authorities in Ukraine released official pictures showing female soldiers marching in heels instead of the usual army boots. According to an AFP report, Ukraine is preparing to stage a military parade next month to mark 30 years of independence following the Soviet Union’s breakup.

As soldiers practice for the parade, the defence ministry released photographs of women soldiers marching in mid-heel black pumps. In the pictures, the soldiers are seen marching in heels while under the close supervision of a commanding officer.

“Today, for the first time, training takes place in heeled shoes,” cadet Ivanna Medvid was quoted as saying by the defence ministry’s information site ArmiaInform. “It is slightly harder than in army boots but we are trying.”


Soon after the pictures went viral, people across the world and on social media, slammed the Ukrainian authorities for sexualising the female troops. Calling the move ‘sexist and misogynist’, many users mocked the idea and blamed the defence ministry for ignoring the health risks the women are being exposed to by being made to march in hee

“It is hard to imagine a more idiotic, harmful idea,” said Inna Sovsun, a member of the Golos party, pointing to health risks. She added that Ukraine’s women soldiers, like men, were risking their lives and “do not deserve to be mocked”.

Here are some reactions:







Ukraine’s defense minister is now under pressure from members of the government over the decision to have female military cadets wear pumps with heels in an important parade.

“The purpose of any military parade is to demonstrate the military ability of the army. There should be no room for stereotypes and sexism,” said a joint statement from three Cabinet members, including Minister of Veterans Affairs Yulia Laputina.

More than 31,000 women now serve in the Ukrainian armed forces, including more than 4,000 of whom are officers.

Elgar Parishad Case: Activist Stan Swamy, 84, Passes Away Ahead of Hearing on Bail Plea

Elgar Parishad Case: Activist Stan Swamy, 84, Passes Away Ahead of Hearing on Bail Plea

New Delhi: 

Stan Swamy, an 84-year-old priest-activist arrested under an anti-terror law in the Elgar Parishad case last year, died this afternoon in the middle of his fight for bail on health grounds. The Jesuit priest had been on a ventilator since yesterday when his health worsened drastically.

Stan Swamy was being treated at the private Holy Family Hospital in Mumbai following a court order on May 28. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) had opposed a private hospital and had recommended JJ Hospital, to which, he had said: “I’d rather die here in prison.”

Jailed near Mumbai since October, Stan Swamy spent the last few months of his life fighting legal battles for even the smallest of needs. In December, he was allowed a straw and a sipper in jail, which he had requested in court on account of Parkinson’s disease.

The NIA, which arrested him in October from his home in a widely criticized late-night swoop, opposed his bail request in court and had said there was no “conclusive proof” of his medical ailments. The agency held firm to its argument that Stan Swamy was a Maoist who had plotted to cause unrest in the country.

Stan Swamy had told the High Court via video-conferencing that his health had consistently declined at the Taloja prison in Navi Mumbai and if he was not granted interim bail, he “would die soon”. He had requested medical treatment and interim bail multiple times.

Last week, Stan Swamy had filed a fresh plea for bail in the Bombay High Court, challenging the stringent conditions for bail to an accused charged under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA)Act. When the hearing started today, his lawyer told the High Court that the activist had died at 1.30 pm.

His body will be handed over to Father Fraser Mascarenhas, the local parish priest.

Soon after the news, there were messages and tributes.

“Heartfelt condolences on the passing of Father Stan Swamy. He deserved justice and humaneness,” tweeted Congress leader Rahul Gandhi.

India to retaliate at a time, place of its choosing

India to retaliate at a time, place of its choosing

NEW DELHI: India will strongly retaliate at a time and place of its choosing if Pakistan attempts to use drones or indulges in `hybrid warfare’ of any kind to target Indian civilian or military assets, chief of defence staff General Bipin Rawat warned on Friday.
Investigative agencies are probing whether the small explosive-laden drones used in the terror attack on the Jammu air force station on June 27 were launched from Pakistan or from within the region, and whether the intent was to deliver a message of a new capability or actually cause damage on the ground, said Gen Rawat.

NEW DELHI: India needs a distinct military command structure and a complete paradigm shift to confront the emerging security threats like grey zone warfare, Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat said on Friday, justifying the ambitious theaterisation process in the Indian armed forces. Referring to

India needs a distinct military command structure to deal with future security challenges: CDS

“We do not yet know the ultimate intention. But let them (Pakistan) attempt to do something to damage our assets, and the reaction from our armed forces will be very different. The political will is there. Our armed forces are ready,” he said, speaking at a webinar here.
“A strong message has to be sent that anything of this nature, grey-zone tactics or hybrid warfare, if it damages our assets and affects our national security, we reserve the right to respond at a time and place of our choosing and the manner in which we wish to respond,” he added.

A drone was spotted over the Indian High Commission complex in Pakistan last week, triggering a huge security scare in the mission, people familiar with the development said on Friday. The Indian mission has already taken up the issue strongly with the Pakistani authorities.

Drone spotted over Indian high commission in Islamabad, India registers protest

Referring to the border truce with Pakistan since February, the CDS said the mere stopping of cross-border firing on the Line of Control was not enough. “If you (Pakistan) are going to use indirect systems to disrupt harmony and cause damage, it amounts to a violation of the ceasefire,” he said.

Two days after the first-ever terror drone strike in the country at Jammu, PM Modi chaired a top-level meeting on Tuesday to discuss a policy on the use of civil drones, `futuristic challenges’ in the defence sector and the need to suitably equip the military with modern equipment to tackle threats.

PM-led meet decides to fast-track policy to tackle threats from small drones

Air Chief Marshal R K S Bhadauria, on his part, said IAF did have a limited number of “soft kill” jammers to disrupt the command-and-control links of small drones and “hard kill” counter-drone systems but they had not been deployed at the Jammu air station because it did not have “critical assets” like fighter jets.
“What happened at Jammu was essentially a terrorist act which attempted to target our assets (Mi-17 V5 helicopters) there. The attempt failed. Two explosives, one HE (high explosive) in nature and the other fragmentation, were used,” said the IAF chief.

Jammu Air Force Station attack: Army chief says fight against drones will be a see-saw battle

NEW DELHI: Indian armed forces are developing capabilities to deal with the ever-increasing threat from drones, with some counter-measures already being put in place, even as they also acquire “offensive capabilities” in the field, General M M Naravane said on Thursday. “Drones will increasingly be

Jammu Air Force Station attack: Army chief says fight against drones will be a see-saw battle

IAF is closely working with DRDO on its anti-drone systems, which have directed energy weapons like lasers and will soon finish their trials. “It’s a new kind of threat. Many of the projects have already been undertaken and some of the systems were already fielded,” he said.
Gen Rawat said the armed forces will have to dynamically keep on adapting to new threats because the next attack could well be through rockets, as was seen in the recent Israel-Hamas conflict, and not drones. “Grey-zone warfare can involve anything and we have to be prepared for it,” he said.

Estimate of 216 crore vaccine doses was aspirational, says V.K. Paul

Estimate of 216 crore vaccine doses was aspirational, says V.K. Paul

A May 13 estimate, by one of India’s top officials overseeing the pandemic response, that India would have 216 crore doses of vaccines from August-December was based on an “optimistic, aspirational assessment” and based on what vaccine manufacturers had conveyed to the government.

V.K. Paul, Chairman, National Empowered Group on Vaccine at a press briefing on Friday was responding to a query on why there was a mismatch between his May projection of 216 crore vaccine doses and a Health Ministry affidavit to the Supreme Court on June 26 that said 135 crore doses would be available from August-December

The discrepancy is significant as the Centre has said that it plans to vaccinate all adults, estimated to be 93-94 crore, by the end of 2021, thus requiring 186-188 crore doses. So far, 33 crore doses have been administered, and 51 crore doses, including those already given, are expected to be administered by the end of July. After a burst of vaccination post June 21, that saw 90 lakh doses administered in a day and over 50 lakh doses, on average, subsequently for the rest of the week, the last week of June has been relatively lacklustre, with a daily average of about 35 lakh vaccine doses administered.

So far, about 35% of adult Indians have received at least one dose of the vaccine, and only 4% of the population has been fully vaccinated.

“When we had said over 200 crore doses will be available, we had said that this was based on information provided by manufacturers of how much they were optimistically, and I had said ‘aspirational’, likely to deliver,” said Dr. Paul. “It was important to share this with people because [at] that time there was a doubt whether vaccines would be available. However, we had also said that planning by the Health Ministry was based on 90 crore doses being made available by our two leading companies [Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotec

India can expect around 1.3 billion doses of vaccines, says epidemiologist Chandrakant Lahariya

The 216 crore doses, according to Dr. Paul’s presentation on May 13, was premised on 75 crore doses of Covishield and 55 crore of Covaxin, which adds up to 130 crore doses, whereas in the Health Ministry’s affidavit, it comes up as 90 crore. The rest is based on expectations of 45 crore vaccines from Biological E, Zydus Cadilla and Sputnik V.

“We are presenting a dynamic situation and that’s the context in which these numbers are presented. We have developments on Zydus Cadilla [applying for emergency use and reporting an interim efficacy of 66%], and several others are also on track,” Dr. Paul added

Promotion of Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut, who calls Kangana Ranaut a harem, became the party’s chief spokesperson

Promotion of Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut, who calls Kangana Ranaut a harem, became the party’s chief spokesperson

Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut, who calls actress Kangana Ranaut as a harem, has been promoted. Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut, who made headlines for the verbal war with Kangana, has been appointed as the chief spokesperson of the party by Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray. The Shiv Sena made this announcement on Tuesday in the party’s mouthpiece Saamana.

Apart from Sanjay Raut, Shiv Sena has appointed 10 other members as spokespersons. These include Shiv Sena MPs Arvind Sawant, Priyanka Chaturvedi and Dheershil Mane, Maharashtra ministers Anil Parab, Uday Samanta and Gulabrao Patil, MLAs Neelam Gore, Pratap Sarnaik and Sunil Prabhu etc. Mumbai Mayor Kishori Pednekar was also appointed as the spokesperson. Sarnaik has been vocal against Kangana and the BJP in the current controversy.

Sanjay Raut has also been criticized for making comments against Kangana Ranaut. However, party insiders said the announcement was meant to send a message to party members not to speak on behalf of the party over the ongoing dispute between Kangana and the Shiv Sena leader.

Where did the dispute start
In fact, in the Sushant Singh case, there has been a verbal war on Twitter between Kangana Ranaut and Shiv Sena leaders for the past several days. Kangana Ranaut had tweeted that she does not trust the Maharashtra Police. At the same time, she wants her security to be taken up by the Haryana Police or the agency of the Center. After this, Shiv Sena Sanjay Raut asked Kangana not to return to Mumbai and used the word haramkhor for Kangana.

Clarification on statement
Later Sanjay Raut gave his clarification and said that it has another meaning in Maharashtra. Here it means naughty and dishonest. Sanjay Raut said, ‘If anyone wants to do politics or create an atmosphere, then any word can be interpreted. When we talk in Maharashtra, haramkhor means naughty and dishonest. She (Kangana) is a naughty girl. I have seen and read that she jokes. I called Kangana dishonest in my language.

What did Shiv Sena MLA Pratap Sarnaik say
Sarnaik has tweeted that Kangana should be booked for treason for comparing Mumbai to Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK). Sarnaik said that Sanjay Raut Ji had softened and cautioned Kangana. If she comes here, our brave women will not leave her without slapping them.