Yuva Sai Sagar

An online news channel

Tag: kerala

Five-star exemption: Supreme Court’s rationale on Kerala liquor ban is unconvincing

(function (d) {
var js, s = d.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0];
js = d.createElement(‘script’);
js.async = true;
js.src = ‘//cdn.teads.tv/media/format.js’;
s.parentNode.insertBefore(js, s);
})(window.document);
<!– FP CRONTAB –>

Bar owners angry as SC upholds Kerala liquor ban; Chandy govt has its task cut out before elections

(function (d) {
var js, s = d.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0];
js = d.createElement(‘script’);
js.async = true;
js.src = ‘//cdn.teads.tv/media/format.js’;
s.parentNode.insertBefore(js, s);
})(window.document);
<!– FP CRONTAB –>

Names to be deleted ‘automatically’ from EC list after death

On the issue of far away polling stations, Zaidi said that the ECI is going to formulate a programme under which all polling booths will fall in the radius of two kilometres from voters’ residences.

PTI
Info

<!– –>

0
0
0

TOP
<!– /.block –>TOP <!– /.block –>
<</h2>
Kerala CM hails Supreme Court verdict upholding liquor policy <!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
Also ReadIndiaGujarat HC extends bail of Naroda-Patiya convict on health groundsIndiaJ&K HC grants bail to separatist leader Masarat AlamIndiaRajnath Singh visits Mufti Sayeed in AIIMSIndiaNo interviews for government jobs from January 1; skill test may continue: DoPTIndia’Awakened’ Hindus can lead world on path of peace: RSS Gen Sec Suresh JoshiIndiaNo Rs 2000 for people violating Kejriwal’s Odd-Even rule in Delhi <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>3rd anniversary of Nirbhaya’s death: Victim’s parents to launch nation-wide protest if convicts not given death sentence<!– /.block –>Kerala CM hails Supreme Court verdict upholding liquor policy<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
<!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Desktop_970x90_BTF –><!– /.block –><!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Tablet_728x90_BTF –><!– /.block –> <!– /#bottom_bar –>

<!– footer start –>

Partner site: Zee News
©2015 Diligent Media Corporation Ltd.

<!– footer end –>
<!– ExpCom CGP –>

Running dry: SC upholds Kerala liquor policy that prohibits sale of alcohol in bars

(function (d) {
var js, s = d.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0];
js = d.createElement(‘script’);
js.async = true;
js.src = ‘//cdn.teads.tv/media/format.js’;
s.parentNode.insertBefore(js, s);
})(window.document);
<!– FP CRONTAB –>

India court upholds Kerala alcohol ban

India’s Supreme Court upholds the Kerala state government’s decision to ban the sale and consumption of alcohol in bars.

SC nod to Kerala’s liquor policy draws mixed reactions; govt is ‘happy’, bar owners are not

(function (d) {
var js, s = d.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0];
js = d.createElement(‘script’);
js.async = true;
js.src = ‘//cdn.teads.tv/media/format.js’;
s.parentNode.insertBefore(js, s);
})(window.document);
<!– FP CRONTAB –>

DDCA row: Gopal Subramanium writes to NSA Ajit Doval asking for officers from CBI, IB

“As I made it clear that the purpose of the inquiry must be the game, the benefit to the game as well as restructuring of the DDCA in the event of such need being present…I am very happy to say that the terms of reference are indeed set out to obtain a level of fairness and objectivity in the inquiry,” he said.

dna Web Team

<!– –>

0
0
29

TOP
<!– /.block –>TOP <!– /.block –>
<</h2>
Jet Airways, SpiceJet announce year-end discounts on air fare <!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
Also ReadIndiaBarack Obama invites PM Modi, Nawaz Sharif to Washington next yearIndiaDDCA row: Gopal Subramanium writes to NSA Ajit Doval asking for officers from CBI, IBIndiaSC upholds Kerala government’s liquor policy; only 5-star hotels can serve liquorIndiaHere’s the list of holidays in 2016 in IndiaIndiaDownload GATE 2016 admit cards/hall tickets at www.gate.iisc.ernet.inIndia14-year-old girl allegedly gang-raped by armymen on Howrah-Amritsar Express <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Rupee down 13 paise versus US dollar<!– /.block –>Jet Airways, SpiceJet announce year-end discounts on air fare<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
<!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Desktop_970x90_BTF –><!– /.block –><!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Tablet_728x90_BTF –><!– /.block –> <!– /#bottom_bar –>

<!– footer start –>

Partner site: Zee News
©2015 Diligent Media Corporation Ltd.

<!– footer end –>

SC upholds Kerala government’s liquor policy; only 5-star hotels can serve liquor

On October 30, 2014, the Kerala High Court had upheld the state government’s decision to close down more than 700 bars, but had exempted heritage and four-star hotels.

dna Web Team

<!– –>

0
0
53

TOP
<!– /.block –>TOP <!– /.block –>
<</h2>
Seaweed capsules for diabetics to make painful needle-pricks history <!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
Also ReadIndiaDDCA row: Gopal Subramanium writes to NSA Ajit Doval asking for officers from CBI, IBIndiaSC upholds Kerala government’s liquor policy; only 5-star hotels can serve liquorIndiaHere’s the list of holidays in 2016 in IndiaIndiaDownload GATE 2016 admit cards/hall tickets at www.gate.iisc.ernet.inIndia14-year-old girl allegedly gang-raped by armymen on Howrah-Amritsar ExpressIndiaMaharashtra: Building collapses in Bhiwandi, 10 rescued <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Jet Airways, SpiceJet announce year-end discounts on air fare<!– /.block –>Seaweed capsules for diabetics to make painful needle-pricks history<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
<!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Desktop_970x90_BTF –><!– /.block –><!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Tablet_728x90_BTF –><!– /.block –> <!– /#bottom_bar –>

<!– footer start –>

Partner site: Zee News
©2015 Diligent Media Corporation Ltd.

<!– footer end –>

Jharkhand: Not a single Naxal attack on police stations in 2015

There were a total of 349 incidents in 2013, 404 in 2012 and 504 in 2011, the booklet detailed.

<!– –>

0
0
0

TOP
<!– /.block –>TOP <!– /.block –>
<</h2>
Salman Khan has made my lips famous: Gizele Thakral <!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
Also ReadIndiaDDCA row: Gopal Subramanium writes to NSA Ajit Doval asking for officers from CBI, IBIndiaSC upholds Kerala government’s liquor policy; only 5-star hotels can serve liquorIndiaHere’s the list of holidays in 2016 in IndiaIndiaDownload GATE 2016 admit cards/hall tickets at www.gate.iisc.ernet.inIndia14-year-old girl allegedly gang-raped by armymen on Howrah-Amritsar ExpressIndiaMaharashtra: Building collapses in Bhiwandi, 10 rescued <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>Infosys to unveil its largest campus with 25,000 seating capacity in Hyderabad<!– /.block –>Salman Khan has made my lips famous: Gizele Thakral<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
<!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Desktop_970x90_BTF –><!– /.block –><!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Tablet_728x90_BTF –><!– /.block –> <!– /#bottom_bar –>

<!– footer start –>

Partner site: Zee News
©2015 Diligent Media Corporation Ltd.

<!– footer end –>

Mumbai Congress journal editor sacked after saying Sonia Gandhi’s father had fascist links

“Some words that have been used in some articles of ‘Congress Darshan’ are certainly objectionable. I accept the mistake. Action will be taken against people in editorial team who are responsible for this mistake,” Nirpuam said.

dna Web Team

<!– –>

0
0
248

TOP
<!– /.block –>TOP <!– /.block –>
<</h2>
L&T Infotech likely to raise over Rs 2,000 crore via IPO in Q4 FY16 <!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
Also ReadIndiaGirl abducted outside her college in Gurgaon finally rescued after manhuntIndiaSexist comments against Smriti Irani: BJP demands Nilamoni Sendeka’s arrest, protest at Congress HQIndiaChristmas nightmare: When ‘Santa’ threw acid on a mother and child in KeralaIndiaCentre to allow bull taming sport ‘Jallikattu’IndiaJourno’s jottings 2015: When politics over beef claimed a life in DadriIndiaSheena Bora murder case: Peter Mukerjea’s judicial custody extended till January 11 <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –>India’s pharma industry may touch Rs 3.63 lakh crore by 2020: Report<!– /.block –>L&T Infotech likely to raise over Rs 2,000 crore via IPO in Q4 FY16<!– /.block –> <!– /#content_bottom –>
<!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Desktop_970x90_BTF –><!– /.block –><!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Tablet_728x90_BTF –><!– /.block –> <!– /#bottom_bar –>

<!– footer start –>

Partner site: Zee News
©2015 Diligent Media Corporation Ltd.

<!– footer end –>

Only unaccounted mufflers will be found if CBI raids my house: Delhi CM Kejriwal

Kejriwal had launched a scathing attack after the CBI raided the Delhi Secretariat and accused the Centre of orchestrating it. While Kejriwal alleged that his office was raided under the pretext of raiding his Principal Secretary’s office, the investigating agency refuted the charges.

PTI
Info

<!– –>

0
0
0

TOP
<!– /.block –>Kerala photographer’s studio burnt down days after he questions Islamic traditions <!– /.block –>
<</h2>
Kerala photographer’s studio burnt down days after he questions Islamic traditions <!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
<!– /.block –>
Also ReadIndia’Akhand Bharat’ a cultural concept, not a political one: RSSIndiaRadhe Maa to Anupam Kher: 8 stars who ‘broke out’ in 2015IndiaGovernment committed to electrification of villages: PM ModiIndiaGovt’s plan to repeal over 1,000 obsolete laws stuck in Rajya SabhaIndiaMann Ki Baat: Address the disabled as ‘divyaang’, not ‘viklaang’, says PM ModiIndiaModi’s Pak visit: What happened behind the scenes to make it possible <!– /.block –>

<!– /#sidebar-second –><!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Desktop_970x90_BTF –><!– /.block –><!– /11440465/DNA_Article_Tablet_728x90_BTF –><!– /.block –> <!– /#bottom_bar –>

<!– footer start –>

Partner site: Zee News
©2015 Diligent Media Corporation Ltd.

<!– footer end –>

Three Kerala youths back after harrowing experience in Saudi Arabia

(function (d) {
var js, s = d.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0];
js = d.createElement(‘script’);
js.async = true;
js.src = ‘//cdn.teads.tv/media/format.js’;
s.parentNode.insertBefore(js, s);
})(window.document);
<!– FP CRONTAB –>

Christmas 2015: Shopping destinations to look out for

“);
}
$(‘.social-sticky’).addClass(‘sticky-social-top’);
}else{
$(‘.social-sticky’).removeClass(‘sticky-social-top’);
$(‘.social-sticky’).html(shtml);
}
});
}

Listing out the best Christmas markets, this article will take you around a merry trip across India.

Christmas

With Christmas just around the corner, the various shoppers’ stops are decked with Christmas decoratives. Below is the list of some famous destinations in India, for Christmas shopping:1. Shops and Carnivals in Delhi :The various embassies in India like German, Australian etc. host Christmas markets in the capital of nation on Christmas. While old Delhi is filled with markets selling various Christmas decorations, others like Dilli Haat and malls in Saket and Connaught Place are no behind. You can also checkout carnivals in Rajouri Garden.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>2. Who can forget Goa:It’s Christmas and what better place to shop, than Goa! From Anjuna Flea Market to Arpora & Margao, Tibetan and Calangute markets, there is a plethora of shops selling Christmas decorations and goodies. You just need to be a wise shopper.
3. Bangaluru is no way behind:The IT city is another shopping destination with so many markets flooded with Christmas trees and beautiful decorations. While you get the best Christmas trees at Chikpet and Vellara junction, others like Thippasandra, Commercial Street and Russell Market in Shivaji nagar also offer various Christmas decorative’s.
4. From hill road to Crawford, Mumbai has much more:Mumbai, amidst the noise, hosts an ocean of markets that offer the best of Christmas varieties. The famous suburb, Bandra, is decorated beautifully for Christmas. You can find Christmas trees, bells, decoratives, Santa hats, goodies, etc. on Hill road and Linking road. While the Abdul Rehman Street on Crawford market offers the best Christmas trees, others like IC Colony Borivali, Elphinstone College and Cuffe Parade etc. also offer the various Christmas treats. All these Christmas markets, organised by the Indo-German Chamber of Commerce, offer an awesome street shopping experience wherein you can bargain and grab a decent deal.
5. Kolkata’s magnificent markets:The City of Joy also offers variety of shopping on Christmas. The famous markets in Kolkata are at the Mirza Ghalib Street, Park Street and New Market. You can surf in through these markets that are beautifully decorated and host some Christmas carols, carnivals etc. You can enjoy the mesmerising music with some good food post-shopping.
6. Kerala – A Shopper’s Paradise on Christmas:Christmas is in the air throughout God’s Own Country and shops are no less than paradise for the shopaholics. While the Broadway Market in Kerala, is one of the favourite destinations, you can find a range of shops on Bazaar Road, Jew Street around Fort Kochi and the ones that spread from Marine drive to Menaka.
7. European Style Markets in Pondicherry:If you want to check out some European flavoured markets on Christmas, then the Lycée français de Pondichéry​, is the place. You can also try out the Christmas markets on MG Road and Mission Street and feel a little European, while you do it.
8. The various bazaars of Shillong:The North-East part of Indian is not far behind when it comes to shopping destinations on Christmas. You can see the various famous streets of Shillong are buzzing on Christmas. You can find the various Christmas decorations at Barra Bazaar, Kyndailas, Police Bazaar and GSS Road. From markets stocked with Christmas decoratives to the Shillong Christmas Festival, Christmas in Shillong is indeed a grand affair.
So you can check out some of these awesome markets and make your Christmas merrier.

Sushma Swaraj promises action after reports of three Indians beaten by Saudi employer

(function (d) {
var js, s = d.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0];
js = d.createElement(‘script’);
js.async = true;
js.src = ‘//cdn.teads.tv/media/format.js’;
s.parentNode.insertBefore(js, s);
})(window.document);
<!– FP CRONTAB –>

3 Indians beaten by Saudi employer, Sushma Swaraj promises action

“);
}
$(‘.social-sticky’).addClass(‘sticky-social-top’);
}else{
$(‘.social-sticky’).removeClass(‘sticky-social-top’);
$(‘.social-sticky’).html(shtml);
}
});
}

In the Whatsapp video, a Saudi employer can be seen beating the men with a wooden plank.
File Photo
PTI
Amid reports that three men from Kerala were beaten by their Saudi employer after they were coned by a placement agency and sent to Saudi Arabia, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday said they have been given police protection and the matter will be followed up.According to reports, three men got conned by a placement agency which gave false job promises and sent them to Saudi Arabia, where they were allegedly attacked by their employer.In the Whatsapp video, a Saudi employer can be seen beating the men with a wooden plank.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In response to the reports, Swaraj tweeted, “We have approached the police and got them police protection. We will follow this up.”

‘Tis the season! A Mumbaikar’s guide to food and wine this Christmas 2015

“);
}
$(‘.social-sticky’).addClass(‘sticky-social-top’);
}else{
$(‘.social-sticky’).removeClass(‘sticky-social-top’);
$(‘.social-sticky’).html(shtml);
}
});
}

If you are short of ideas for what to do this Christmas, here’s your complete guide to food, drinks, recipes and more to cheer up your festive season.

Christmas

If you are short of ideas for what to do this Christmas, here’s your complete guide to food, drinks, recipes and more to cheer up your festive season in Mumbai. Savour authentic festive goodies in Dadar With Christmas around the corner, how can the delicious cookies and baked goodies be far behind? Iamin caught up with Ann Dias, a Dadar resident who is famous for the Christmas treats she churns out in her kitchen. The 63-year-old has been making traditional Christmas delights since 1982. What started off as a passion, soon took an entrepreneurial turn, as Dias began selling her home-made sweets during the festive season. A big hit among residents, the word of her undertaking spread far and wide, making her a known name in the local circuit. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Read more… Head to Bandra’s Hearsch bakeryPeople with sweet-tooths in Mumbai can head to a famous bakery in Bandra’s Hill Road area.J. Hearsch Bakery has been one of the favourites among other sweer shops, during festive season, especially around Christmas.This year, the bakery is serving special items like Marzipan, milk cream, pink ice, walnut fudge, Christmas cupcakes, Christmas fruit and nut chocolate cake, and Snowman Lollipop. The range starts from Rs 130, which will hardly burn any hole in your pockets. Melvin D’sa who runs the bakery, said, “Like every year this time too we have started selling Christmas items from this week. I hope the sales increase this year.” Read more… American Express Bakery in Bandra’s Hill Road American Express Bakery in Bandra’s Hill Road, a favourite among pastry lovers was started a hundred years ago by a goan in Byculla. The bakery has entered the Christmas mode and has chalked out a schedule of special breads and items to be sold on particular days till December 25. These items include steak and kidney pie start, bread basket, Portuguese bread, Dundee Start and the most popular one – Stollen. Read more… Christmas Recipe: Snack on Vettu Cake, an easy South-Indian delicacyWith Christmas around the corner, Christian households are buzzing with activity. While most of the rooms are decked up with baubles, lights and red stocking for Santa, the kitchen becomes the hub of festive preparations as well. One such snack that is often dished out by Kerala Christians is Vettu Cake. Quite a misnomer, Vettu Cake recipe is not at all tedious and involves no baking it all. Quick, easy to make and long lasting, the fried snack is usually stored in air-tight containers, to serve guests who drop by home to offer Christmas wishes and to satiate the mid-afternoon hunger pangs of little kids swarming around the house. Read more… Try your hand making sweet diamond cuts Among the several traditional dishes laid out on the tray of goodies during Christmas, it is hard to miss the sweet and crispy diamond cut or Vettipori. For those accustomed to these delightful fried snacks during the festive season, the one memory that will flash through your mind will be of the ladies in Malayali households, getting together on a cold afternoon, kneading and rolling dough to cut them out into diamond shapes. Coated with sugary syrup, these sweet golden treats are stored in air-tight containers and can last up to a month.Read more… Savour popular Goan Baath Cake this festive seasonThe Baath Cake is typically a Goan dessert speciality that is made during Christmas and Easter. It is usually prepared as a part of the ‘Kuswar’ or set of goodies prepared specifically for the festive season by the Goan Catholic community. Its primary ingredients are semolina and coconut— both desiccated and fresh coconut can be used, but the dish must be consumed within three days if the latter is used. Since it is generally a soft, crumbly and moist cake, one needs to be careful about not over-baking it as it then, tends to become too dry. Read more… Try out Rose Cookies or Achappam One of Kerala’s authentic Christmas snacks is the Rose Cookies or Achappam, which are mildly sweet and extremely crunchy. Also hailed as the Indian version of the famous Scandinavian Rosette Cookies, this made using an Achu or iron-mould from which it derives its name. This is usually tricky for first-timers and getting perfectly-shaped cookies turns out to be quite a task, until you learn the knack of using the mould. However, preparing the batter is far from laborious and is a crunchy delight once off the stove and ready to be devoured. Read more… Try out Bohri-style lunch in MumbaiFood and festivities have always gone together so why should this Christmas be any different? If you are in Mumbai, then how about a Bohri home cooked meal to ring in the celebrations? The Bohri Kitchen, an experimental lunch concept has something special for their guests for this Saturday’s event – Bohri food with a twist. Read more… ​And here’s some help with winesWine is the flavour of this festive season. It is the safest bet, whether it is a party or a cozy couple dinner. For some, choosing wines that go hand-in-hand with relaxation and celebration can sometimes become intimidating, especially when hosting a group. Ajay Shetty, MD, Myra Vineyards lists three kinds of wines you should go for this season, and their right pairings. So go ahead and get the party started!Read more… For more such stories, visit Iamin.com

Kerala Governor P Sathasivam not allowed to board Air India Flight as he reached late

“);
}
$(‘.social-sticky’).addClass(‘sticky-social-top’);
}else{
$(‘.social-sticky’).removeClass(‘sticky-social-top’);
$(‘.social-sticky’).html(shtml);
}
});
}

The delayed flight had yesterday reached Kochi airport at 10.58 PM and was to leave by 1140 PM.

Kerala Governor Justice P Sathasivam failed to board an Air India flight from Kochi to the state capital after the pilot reportedly refused to wait for the dignitary and took off.Raj Bhavan sources said the Governor reached Nedumbassery International airport about 10 minutes before the flight was to depart at 11:40 PM yesterday, but the “step ladder had been removed and the flight was pushing back”.According to the sources, the Governor was returning to the state capital after attending a function in Kozhikode.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>They were informed by Air India officials that the Delhi-Kochi -Thiruvanthapuram A1048 flight will take off at 1140 PM.The delayed flight had yesterday reached Kochi airport at 10.58 PM and was to leave by 1140 PM.”We got a communication from the airport that the flight will take off at 11.40 PM. However, when the Governor, accompanied by his wife reached the airport at 11.28 PM to board the flight, we saw the step ladder had been removed and the flight was pushing back,” the sources told PTI.AI officials were waiting at the ladder point with the Governor’s boarding pass.The sources said though the Air India manager had informed the pilot that the Governor was arriving, he refused to wait for him and closed the door.When contacted, the airport sources said the Governor had reached the tarmac when the flight was at the “push back stage and the doors were closed”.Raj Bhavan sources said they would be taking up the matter with appropriate authorities even as Air India sources said they were looking into the matter.After an overnight stay at Kochi, the Governor reached the state capital by road this morning.Two years ago, the then Governor Nikhil Kumar had also faced a similar situation.

Kerala Assembly polls: BJP announces alliance with party formed by SNDP

“);
}
$(‘.social-sticky’).addClass(‘sticky-social-top’);
}else{
$(‘.social-sticky’).removeClass(‘sticky-social-top’);
$(‘.social-sticky’).html(shtml);
}
});
}

BJP state President Kummanam Rajasekharan indicated that BJP would have a tie-up with Bharat Dharma Jana Sena, a new party formed by Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam, an outfit of backward Ezhava community, led by general secretary Vellapally Natesan.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with SNDP general secretary Vellapally Natesan during his recent visit to Kerala on December 15, 2015.

PTI
Setting the agenda for the 2016 Assembly polls, BJP in Kerala on Saturday launched a scathing attack on ruling Congress-led UDF and CPI(M)-headed LDF Opposition as it looked to capture power in the state.”During earlier polls, the party used to say that it’s aim is to open an account. But this time we are contesting for coming to power by securing 70 plus seats,” newly-appointed BJP state President Kummanam Rajasekharan said at a meet-the-press programme in Thiruvananthapuram. There is political space for BJP in Kerala and it was evident from the good performances in the recent civic polls, he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Rajasekharan also indicated that BJP would have a tie-up with Bharat Dharma Jana Sena, a new party formed by Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam, an outfit of backward Ezhava community, led by general secretary Vellapally Natesan.”Discussions would be held to form a third force in the coming days,” he said and added that people have realised the “unethical” politics practised by both UDF and LDF.Rajasekharan said a new political situation was emerging in Kerala which would see BJP and its allies on one side and the anti-BJP group on the other. Rajasekharan, a full-time RSS worker and a hard core Sangh Parivar activist, alleged that both the Fronts pursue the policy of appeasement on the basis of religion. He questioned the rationale behind the administration of temples by the government.”Why does government interfere only in the administration of temples? Why is it not ready to take over the administration of churches and mosques?” he asked.”The government should leave temple matters to devotees,” he said, adding a Hindu devotee now does not have a say on the affairs of temples.Devaswom Boards, that runs about 1,300 temples in Kerala function in an undemocratic manner, he alleged and added that devotees’ views and opinions are not taken into consideration.Rajasekharan, also an enviromentalist, wanted a master plan to protect and preserve the Western Ghats, based on the reports of Madhav Gadgil and Kasturirangan Committees on Western Ghats preservation. He also alleged that Kerala was the only state which had failed to implement the Forest Rights Act, that ensures tribals the right on land and other forest resources.

India MP seeks to decriminalise gay sex

Indian MP Shashi Tharoor is due to introduce a bill in parliament to decriminalise gay sex.

Kerala CM Oommen Chandy suspects BJP was behind keeping him out of PM Modi’s function

Natesan is the General Secretary of the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam, which organised the event in Kollam yesterday, and has floated a new party Bharat Dharma Jana Sena (BDJS), which is likely to align with BJP in the next year’s Assembly elections in Kerala.

Kerala CM Oommen Chandy met with PM Modi on the latter’s Kerala visit to discuss the Mullaperiyar issue.

PTI
Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has said that keeping him out of a function to unveil a statute of a late chief minister R Sankar by Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday was an “insult” to the state and suspected that BJP was behind it.”If you go by the elimination process, the suspicion leads you there (to the BJP),” he told ‘The Week’, according to a release issued by the news magazine.”Vellapally Natesan (SNDP leader) called me up and told me that it was difficult for him to let me attend the function as he was under tremendous pressure. I am absolutely certain that Natesan is not behind this,” Chandy said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Natesan is the General Secretary of the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam, which organised the event in Kollam yesterday, and has floated a new party Bharat Dharma Jana Sena (BDJS), which is likely to align with BJP in the next year’s Assembly elections in Kerala.”Although I am extremely sad, the grief isn’t personal. To keep the CM out of such a function is an insult to the state,” the chief minister said.Asked about Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s statement in Parliament that the chief minister’s office had sent a letter saying he was giving the function a miss, Chandy replied that in the the afternoon of December 12, his office issued a press release about him not attending the function which explained in detail that he was skipping it because those who had invited him themselves asked him not to come.”So, quite clear that I was not withdrawing on my own. Then I got a call from an officer of special duty in the PMO saying that Natesan told them I would not be attending and asked for my confirmation. After this the state protocol officer got a call from the PMO asking whether the CM would attend the function. When he said I would not be attending, the PMO insisted that the response should be given in writing. That was how the letter was sent,” Chandy said.The chief minister said the Congress in Kerala was quite sentimental about Shankar as the party never had a CM of its own after him as those who came after him were leading Congress-led alliances. So when he was asked to stay away from the event after being invited to preside over it first, it hurt him deeply, Chandy said. He said although he was sad about the whole thing, he exercised utmost restraint while the prime minister was in Kerala as he did not want the PM’s programmes to suffer in any manner. He received Modi when he arrived in Kochi and the entire Cabinet was present to see him off at Thiruvananthapuram airport.Chandy said he had handed over a letter to Modi about about his views on the controversy while seeing him off at the airport. He said although there was a possibility of an alliance between BJP and BDJS, the people of Kerala would not let the alliance flourish and that the statue unveiling controversy pointed to that.

PM Modi to address defence top brass on board INS Vikramaditya

Addressing the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers in a public rally at Thrissur yesterday, the Prime Minister said that the BJP had suffered most in Kerala during the last 50 years, adding that scores of party workers were “murdered” in the state for political reasons.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday will address a combined commanders’ conference on board the aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya off the Kochi coast in Kerala.The Combined Commanders Conference is an annual three services event which is being held for the first time outside the national capital.Three service chiefs and other senior officers of the Army, Navy and Air Force will brief the Prime Minister about military issues and also put up suggestions in the one-day event.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Prime Minister will also unveil former chief minister R. Shankar’s statue at Kollam and pay floral tributes to Sree Narayana Guru Mahasamadhi at Sivagiri inVarkala before returning to Delhi.Addressing the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers in a public rally at Thrissur yesterday, the Prime Minister said that the BJP had suffered most in Kerala during the last 50 years, adding that scores of party workers were “murdered” in the state for political reasons.He also decried social untouchability in Kerala and said that several saints and Rishis had dedicated their lives to end social unsociability in the state and also lashed out at the Congress-led UnitedDemocratic Front (UDF) coalition and Communist Party of India (Marxist)-Left Democratic Front (LDF) in Kerala and accused them of looting the state in turns.Prime Minister Modi arrived at Kochi Naval Base yesterday on a two-day trip to Kerala and was received by Kerala Governor P Sathasivam and Chief Minister Oommen Chandy.

PM Narendra Modi accuses UDF and CPI(M) of looting Kerala

Likening the third force to the ‘third eye’ of Lord Shiva in this temple town, where the famous Wadakunathar Temple for Shiva is located, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said it would destroy the “evils” of the two fronts, an apparent reference to the Congress-led UDF and CPI(M)-led Left Front.

PTI
On his first visit to Kerala after assuming office, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a strong attack on the ruling Congress-led UDF and the CPI(M), accusing them of indulging in “loot” of the state by turns during their tenure in power and hiding their “sins”. Addressing a public meeting organised by the party, he referred to the BJP’s success in the local bodies election last month and asserted it has emerged as the “third force” in Kerala that will replace the two fronts in the next year’s Assembly elections and transform the state’s fortunes.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Unfortunately, Kerala’s politics is such that two coalitions have been ruling the state and looting its people. One coalition comes to power and loots. People get angry every five years and throw it out and another coalition comes. This cycle has been continuing so far. Both the coalitions are busy hiding each other’s sins and then continue with their loot. Now the people of Kerala need not get angry any more. A third force has emerged in Kerala. It is like Lord Shiva’s third eye, which will destroy the sins and free the state from the evils and corruption. The emergence of the third force will change Kerala’s future and bring prosperity and peace in the state,” Modi said.Likening the third force to the ‘third eye’ of Lord Shiva in this temple town, where the famous Wadakunathar Temple for Shiva is located, he said it would destroy the “evils” of the two fronts, an apparent reference to the Congress-led UDF and CPI(M)-led Left Front.The Prime Minister, who was on his first visit to Kerala after assuming office, was addressing a public meeting organised by his party at the Thekkinkadu ground in front of the temple where the annual world-famous Pooram festival is conducted. Looking at the good crowd and its response, Modi said the gathering is an indication that Kerala has decided to bring a “change” by electing BJP to power in the next elections.Referring to the dominance of the two rival fronts in Kerala for decades, Modi said in a state where social reformers like Sree Narayana Guru had fought and removed social untouchability, a climate of political untouchability is still prevalent in Kerala.”This untouchability is carried to such lengths and those opposed to their political ideology are harassed and sometimes physically eliminated. Their (fronts’) thinking process is such,” he said.Modi said that at least over 200 BJP workers have been killed in the last 50 years just because of ideological differences.”If you see the political history of any state in India, Kerala is probably the only one where in the last 50 years BJP has suffered political vendetta and probably no other party has suffered that much like in Kerala,” he said.The Prime Minister the BJP worker in Kerala stands tall and is a shining example of commitment and perseverance to the party workers throughout the country.”I tell BJP men everywhere to look at the dedication of BJP workers in Kerala. There is no victory in sight, no power or positions in sight. But they have been fighting for the nationalist cause. After every election, the only review they used to undertake is to check whether they have retained their deposits, whether the defeat margin is bigger or smaller than the previous results,” he said.

BJP has emerged as the ‘third force’ in Kerala, says PM Modi

(function (d) {
var js, s = d.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0];
js = d.createElement(‘script’);
js.async = true;
js.src = ‘//cdn.teads.tv/media/format.js’;
s.parentNode.insertBefore(js, s);
})(window.document);
<!– FP CRONTAB –>

Solar scam: Opposition shouts slogans, surrounds Speaker’s podium in Kerala Assembly

(function (d) {
var js, s = d.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0];
js = d.createElement(‘script’);
js.async = true;
js.src = ‘//cdn.teads.tv/media/format.js’;
s.parentNode.insertBefore(js, s);
})(window.document);
<!– FP CRONTAB –>

Did Kerala CM Oommen Chandy decline attending PM Modi’s event?

A document has emerged on social media which says that CM Oommen Chandy himself said he will not be attending the function.

Kerala CM Oommen Chandy on Monday said the decision to exclude him from the function by PM Modi was a “painful experience” and an “insult” to people of the state.
File Photo
AFP photo
Amidst the uproar in Congress over not inviting Oommen Chandy to a function where PM Narendra Modi will also be present, a document has emerged showing that the Kerala CM himself stated that ‘he will not be attending’ the function.Although the authenticity of this document is not verified; it has been widely circulated on social media. Amit Malviya, BJP’s national IT and Social Media wing in-charge, tweeted the image too:CM Chandy on Monday said the decision to exclude him from the function by PM Modi was a “painful experience” and an “insult” to people of the state.”PM is coming to the state for the first time after assuming office. R Sankar is a former chief minister and late Congress leader. As per protocol and basic courtesies Kerala chief minister should have been attending the function,” he said.Chandy, who is facing the heat over the solar scam, said: “I have always tried to keep myself away from controversies, but they have always followed me in an unexpected manner. The latest being withdrawal of invite to attend the statue unveiling ceremony of R Sankar at Kollam.” The Congress on Monday demanded an apology from PM Modi for excluding Chandy from the functions to be organised by the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam. The function, scheduled for Tuesday, is to unveil the former Chief Minister and Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president, R. Sankar’s statue in Kollam.Meanwhile, the government also clarified that Prime Minister’s Office has no role in excluding Kerala Chief Minister Oomen Chandy’s name. Replying to a point raised by Congress leader K C Venugopal, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said centre does not want any confrontation with any state. Rajnath said the Congress leader’s allegation is completely baseless and without any facts.The Home minister said the socio cultural organisation SNDP has unanimously passed a resolution not to invite the chief minister.With Agnecies

Congress, BJP clash in Lok Sabha over withdrawal of invite to Kerala CM Oommen Chandy

Home Minister Rajnath Singh dismissed the charge as “baseless” and said the decision to withdraw the invite to Chandy for the event in Kerala was taken by SNDP, a social organisation which is hosting it, due to its “internal row” and the government had nothing to do with it.

Oommen Chandy
File Photo

Congress and BJP members clashed in the Lok Sabha on Monday over the exclusion of Kerala Chief Minister from a Prime Minister’s event on Tuesday with the former alleging that the PM’s constitutional position was being used for “political vendetta”, a charge denied by the government.Home Minister Rajnath Singh dismissed the charge as “baseless” and said the decision to withdraw the invite to Chandy for the event in Kerala was taken by SNDP, a social organisation which is hosting it, due to its “internal row” and the government had nothing to do with it. The Speaker was forced to adjourn the House earlier due to the uproar over the issue, along with the protests by AAP members against demolition drive in the national capital.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>K C Venugopal (Cong) raised it during the Zero Hour soon after the House reassembled noon. “It is an agonising issue which has seriously affected emotions of people of Kerala and the country. It is a serious breach of political morality… Due to the unfair political move by the ruling party at the Centre (BJP), he (Chandy) was dropped. The entire state is shocked and agitating. The PMO or the Prime Minister has a hand in this. Humiliating the Chief Minister is humiliation of Kerala. The constitutional position is being used for political vendetta,” Venugopal said.Citing the programme schedule sent to the PMO by the state’s protocol department, he said it included the name of Chandy who was to preside over the function while Modi was to unveil the statue of former state chief minister R Shankar. “This is against cooperative federalism. The Prime Minister like always is keeping unjustifiable silence,” he said.Rejecting the charge as “unfounded and baseless”, the Home Minister said it was true that SNDP had first invited Chandy which led to some “internal row” within it and the organisation then adopted a “unanimous resolution” saying the Chief Minister should not come. “Who is invited and who is not is a decision for the SNDP to take and the government has nothing to do with it,” Singh said. Asserting that the central government does not want any confrontation with states, the Minister said it had taken many steps to strengthen “cooperative federalism”. Venugopal said the event has been projected as a private event due to political reason.Saugata Roy (TMC) was heard saying that the Prime Minister should not go to the event amid protests by Congress and Left members. The members of the three parties soon staged a walk out, along with those of the NCP and RJD.Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Rajiv Pratap Rudy cited a letter by Chandy quoting him that he would not be attending the event as he was not available. Rudy said Venugopal’s charge was absolutely incorrect. SNDP, an organisation of Ezhava community, has entered into an political alliance with the BJP.

Oommen Chandy Invitation Row: PM has insulted Kerala, says Rahul Gandhi

Speaking to media, Rahul Gandhi said, “PM has insulted the people of Kerala by stopping the Chief Minister from attending the function. This is not acceptable to us,” Mr Gandhi said.

PTI
Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi on Monday accused PM Modi of insulting the people of the state over a function to which Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has not been invited.Modi will undertake his first visit to Kerala which is already in controversy after Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said he was being kept away from a function where the PM will be present by an outfit of Hindu Ezhava community.Speaking to media, Rahul Gandhi said, “PM has insulted the people of Kerala by stopping the Chief Minister from attending the function. This is not acceptable to us.”<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Prime Minister will inaugurate the Combined Tri services commanders conference at INS Vikramaditya, the largest aircraft carrier of the country, on Tuesday.Later, Modi will be attending two functions close to the backward Ezhava community, apparently in an effort to woo them with assembly polls expected early next year.Modi will unveil the statue of former Kerala Chief Minister late R Sankar, a well-known leader of the Ezhava community, who had headed the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam (SNDP) and the Kerala PCC.However, the programme has run into controversy with Chief Minister Oommen Chandy allegedly being asked to stay away by SNDP General Secretary Vellapally Natesan. Chandy himself in a press note had brought up the issue saying he would not be attending the function as Natesan had requested him not to attend and was “deeply saddened”.Natesan has not stated the reason for asking Chandy to keep away from the function.Chandy has already informed Prime Minister’s office that he would not be attending the function.Congress spokesman Abhishek Singhvi described the action as pettiness of the worst kind and wanted that Prime Minister should himself refuse to go to the function.(With agency inputs)

Narendra Modi to make his first Kerala visit as PM amid row over snub to CM Oommen Chandy

The Prime Minister will inaugurate the Combined Tri services commanders conference at INS Vikramaditya, the largest aircraft carrier of the country, on Tuesday.
File Photo
PTI
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will undertake his first visit to Kerala from Sunday which is already in controversy after Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said he was being kept away from a function where the PM will be present by an outfit of Hindu Ezhava community. The Prime Minister will inaugurate the Combined Tri services commanders conference at INS Vikramaditya, the largest aircraft carrier of the country, on Tuesday.Later, Modi will be attending two functions close to the backward Ezhava community, apparently in an effort to woo them with assembly polls expected early next year. Modi will unveil the statue of former Kerala Chief Minister late R Sankar, a well known leader of the Ezhava community, who had headed the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam (SNDP) and the Kerala PCC.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>However, the programme has run into controversy with Chief Minister Oommen Chandy allegedly being asked to stay away by SNDP General Secretary Vellapally Natesan. Chandy himself in a press note had brought up the issue saying he would not be attending the function as Natesan had requested him not to attend and was “deeply saddened”.Natesan has not stated the reason for asking Chandy to keep away from the function. Chandy has already informed Prime Minister’s office that he would not be attending the function. Congress spokesman Abhishek Singhvi described the action as pettiness of the worst kind and wanted that Prime Minister should himself refuse to go to the function.”It is an insult of the Constitutional position of a Chief Minister. PM should respond ….and should even refuse to go himself (to the function) as the deceased former Chief Minister of Kerala and also the current one have been insulted by this petty act,” Singhvi said.When asked if the Congress could raise the matter in the Parliament, Singhvi said “we have all options open.” Soon after his arrival at Kochi, his first to the state after assuming office as Prime Minister in May last year, by a special airforce flight by 4.10 PM at the INS Garuda naval air station, he will leave by helicopter for Thrissur to address a public meeting of BJP workers at 5 PM. After the meeting, Modi will return to Kochi and stay there, a government press release said.On December 15, the Prime Minister will receive a tri service guard of honour at INS Garuda and inaugurate the Combined Tri services commanders conference. Modi will also be visiting the Sivagiri mutt and pay homage at the samadhi of social reformer Sree Narayana Guru and offer floral tributes and plant a sapling. He will then move to Vaidika Mutt, where Mahatma Gandhi and Rabindranath Tagore had met the Guru 90 years ago. He will also be planting a tree sapling, Swami Sachidananda, General coordinator of the Prime Minister’s visit said.A large plaque of ‘Daiva Dasakam’, inscribed in Malayalam along with its English translation, will be unveiled by Modi. He will then proceed to Sarada mutt in the Sivagiri campus and address the public for a few minutes. Modi will then return to Delhi via Thiruvananthapuram airport by 5.15 PM in a special Airforce flight.

Kerala Hindu organisation excludes CM Chandy from PM Modi’s event, Congress takes offence

A controversy had taken off over the alleged decision of Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam (SNDP), an organisation of backward Ezhava community, to exclude Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, from attending the unveiling of former CM R Sankar’s statue by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on December 15.
File Photo
AFP photo
The issue of reported “insult” to Kerala Chief Minister Oomen Chandy by not inviting him to an upcoming event to be attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi could generate heat in the Parliament on Monday, with Congress expected to raise the matter.A controversy had taken off over the alleged decision of Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam (SNDP), an organisation of backward Ezhava community, to exclude Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, from attending the unveiling of former CM R Sankar’s statue by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on December 15.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Party spokesman Abhishek Singhvi described the action as pettiness of the worst kind and wanted that Prime Minister should himself refuse to go to the function.”It is pettiness of the worst kind. It is an insult of the Constitutional position of a Chief Minister. PM should respond ….and should even refuse to go himself (to the function) as the deceased former Chief Minister of Kerala and also the current one have been insulted by this petty act,” Singhvi said.When asked if the Congress could raise the matter in the Parliament, Singhvi said “we have all options open.” Chandy in a press note had earlier stated that he was “deeply saddened” for keeping away from the function following a request of Vellappally Natesan, general secretary of SNDP, the organiser of the event.Chandy, had said that though he should have been present at the function being attended by the PM and also because Sankar was a former CM and Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) chief, he was forced to take the decision to stay away, following the organisers request.

Kerala House beef row: Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi faces tough questions from MPs in Parliament

The Parliamentary panel, which met in New Delhi to discuss the issue of ‘communal and social harmony’, also asked Mehrishi about the number of communal incidents which have taken place in the recent past.

Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi on Tuesday faced some tough questions from Parliamentarians over a Delhi Police “raid” on Kerala House canteen for allegedly serving beef. The Home Secretary assured the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home that he would get back with a detailed statement.The Parliamentary panel, which met in New Delhi to discuss the issue of ‘communal and social harmony’, also asked Mehrishi about the number of communal incidents which have taken place in the recent past. He was also asked to explain how the government defines a ‘major’ or a ‘minor’ communal incident.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We asked the Home Secretary how the Delhi Police could take such a step like raiding the canteen of Kerala House over allegations that beef was being sold there. He assured the Committee to get back with a detailed statement,” a member present in the meeting told PTI. The Home Secretary was also quizzed about attacks on Dalits in various parts of the country. Members pointed out that while victims of communal riots are paid compensation, no such practice followed by the Centre for dalits.Controversy had erupted over Delhi police personnel entering Kerala House on October 26 following a complaint that cow meat was being served there. Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and his Delhi counterpart Arvind Kejriwal had condemned the “raid”. Though Kerala House said cow meat was never on its menu, it stopped serving even buffalo meat for a couple of days.Delhi Police Commissioner BS Bassi had claimed the canteen was not raided and that the police were merely taking “preventive measures” based on a PCR call. The incident had come close on the heels of lynching of a Muslim man at Bishada village near Dadri in Uttar Pradesh over rumours that he and his family had eaten and store beef.Police had detained Hindu Sena chief Vishnu Gupta for allegedly making a false complaint about beef being served at Kerala House.”Parliament did not run but the Standing Comtee (Committee) on Home Affairs had a purposive two-hour meeting. Should these be televised? Just asking,” panel member and TMC MP Derek O’Brien tweeted later.Last month, the top MHA official had faced criticism from MPs for his absence from the meeting of the committee.

BJP demands resignation of Kerala CM Oommen Chandy

The party also sought a time-bound CBI probe into the matter and expressed its surprise over the “silence” of Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and vice president Rahul Gandhi, calling their conduct “shameful”.

Oommen Chandy

BJP on Friday accused Congress of “quietly approving” the corruption of its leaders even as it demanded the resignation of Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy over the allegation of a solar scam accused that he had paid him a bribe of Rs 5.5 crore.The party also sought a time-bound CBI probe into the matter and expressed its surprise over the “silence” of Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and vice president Rahul Gandhi, calling their conduct “shameful”. “BJP’s stand on corruption is of zero tolerance while Congress not only encourages corruption but also protects the corrupt… After the recent revelation, Chandy has lost moral right to remain chief minister. He should immidiately resign,” BJP secretary Shrikant Sharma said in a statement.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Citing the “silence” of Congress top brass over the corruption cases against Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, he alleged, “It seems the top Congress brass is giving its quiet approval to Singh’s corruption and black money.” He said the silence was raising many questions and wondered if top Congress leaders had a share in the “scams” of Chandy, Singh and other leaders who, he alleged, also included Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat and former Union minister Preneet Kaur.”People want to know what is your compulsion that you cannot act against your three chief ministers facing corruption charges,” he said. Dismissing as baseless the allegation against him by solar scam accused Biju Radhakrishnan, Chandy had told the state Assembly on December 3 that he had no right to continue in public life or hold any post if there was even one per cent truth in the charges.

Solar scam: Kerala CM Chandy denies charges, LDF steps up protest

Chandy said he would take legal recourse to bring out the alleged CD and other “evidence” to reveal the truth.

Oommen Chandy

Dismissing as baseless the allegation against him by solar scam accused Biju Radhakrishnan, Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy on Thursday told the state Assembly that he has no right to continue in public life or hold any post if there is even one per cent truth in the charges. However, the CPI(M)-led opposition targeted Chandy and demanded a probe into allegations as they stepped up their protest over the issue, creating uproar in the House which led to its adjournment ahead of schedule. Chandy, replying to a notice for an adjournment motion moved by the Opposition on the fresh deposition by Radhakrishnan, said he would take legal recourse to bring out the alleged CD and other “evidence” to reveal the truth.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> “The allegation, raised by the Opposition, is a very serious one. I have no right to continue in public life and in any post if there is even one per cent truth in it,” he said. “My life is an open book. Levelling charges without an iota of truth is actually a challenge to the society, political system and to the state,” an emotional Chandy said. The charges, made by Radhakrishnan while deposing before the solar judicial commission yesterday, had created a row in the state with Opposition taking on Chandy in the House. CPI(M) leader E P Jayarajan, while seeking leave for the motion, demanded a comprehensive inquiry into the allegations by Radhakrishnan that a bribe of Rs 5.50 crore was paid to Chandy as part of his solar solution business Lashing out at the Congress-led UDF government, he also said Chandy has no “moral or legal right” to continue as Chief Minister. Countering the Opposition charges, Chandy said that “Radhakrishnan had enmity towards this government for farming charges under IPC 320 in connection with the murder of his wife. “Even though I had to pay a huge price (facing allegations) for this, I am happy that I did justice,” the CM said.

Solar scam: CPI-M attacks Kerala CM Oommen Chandy

Justice (retd) Sivarajan commission should publish an interim-report in the wake of serious allegations made by Radhakrishnan, who was one of the main partner of ‘Team Solar Company’, that allegedly cheated several persons by offering ‘ Solar panel solutions’.

The CPI(M) in Kerala on Wednesday described as “shocking” the deposition made by a prime accused before the judicial commission probing solar scam that a bribe of Rs 5.50 crore was paid to Chief Minister Oommen Chandy.The deposition was made by Biju Radhakrishnan, the second accused in the solar case, before the commission at the sitting at Kochi today.CPI-M state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan said that the statement of Radhakrishan had confirmed the allegations came out in this regard when the scam broke out in 2013 itself.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Justice (retd) Sivarajan commission should publish an interim-report in the wake of serious allegations made by Radhakrishnan, who was one of the main partner of ‘Team Solar Company’, that allegedly cheated several persons by offering ‘ Solar panel solutions’.The company was allegedly floated by Saritha S Nair and Radhakrishnan. Saritha is the first accused in the case.They were arrested and were on bail.However, Radhakrishan is in prison after he was convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment in connection with the murder of his wife.Solar scam pertains to cheating of several persons worth crores of rupees by Saritha and Radhakrishnan by offering solar panel solutions.The duo allegedly canvassed business by using high-level names including that of Chandy.The case that came to light in June 2013 took a political turn as three of Chandy’s staff members were forced to quit and one of them, Tenny Joppen, was arrested for alleged link with Saritha.The scam had rocked the state and LDF opposition had launched an agitation pressing for Chandy’s resignation, but the government did not relent.

Ban liquor in Rajasthan, demands former CM Ashok Gehlot

Ashok Gehlot

Former Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Wednesday demanded that liquor be banned in the state.”Six states, including Gujarat, Kerala, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Bihar, have already banned the liquor, the BJP government should consider banning it in Rajasthan,” Gehlot said in a statement here. Referring to former MLA Gurucharan Singh Chhabra who died while on hunger strike to demand ban on liquor, Gehlot said his daughter-in-law Pooja Chhabra recently ended her 8-day-old fast after a written agreement with the BJP government.Till the state government takes any decision on banning liquor, the excise department should ensure that liquor is not sold without license to consumers at public places and at private functions, and illicit liquor is not made anywhere in the state, Gehlot said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

Pakistan ghazal singer Ghulam Ali to perform in Kerala in January

Two of Ali’s scheduled concerts in Mumbai and Pune in October were cancelled following protests from Shiv Sena while he backed out from his Delhi programme last month citing personal reasons.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Pakistan ghazal legend Ghulam Ali, whose concerts in Maharashtra and Delhi were cancelled recently, will perform in Kerala twice in January.The 75-year-old singer is scheduled to perform in the state capital on January 15 and in Kozhikode on January 17 at the invitation of social organisation ‘Swaralaya’. An office bearer of Swaralaya said that the singer had confirmed his participation. The organisation would also honour Ali during the function. The singer could not be reached for comments.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Two of Ali’s scheduled concerts in Mumbai and Pune in October were cancelled following protests from Shiv Sena while he backed out from his Delhi programme last month citing personal reasons. The Shiv Sena had held that while tension remained at the Indo-Pak border, such a concert could not be allowed.

Alcohol isn’t the problem, abuse is: That’s why Nitish’s rationale for a Bihar booze ban is flawed

Nitish Kumar said on Thursday that the state of Bihar will implement a ban on alcohol. The state earns a revenue of Rs 4,000 crore annually from the sale of liquor. However, the CM has said that in the interest of women and the poor, the state government will impose ban on liquor from 1 April, 2016.

In India, alcohol consumption is prohibited in Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram and Gujarat and the union territory of Lakshadweep. According to the BBC, the state of Kerala announced in 2014 that it plans to impose a state-wide prohibition on the sale of alcohol in the next ten years. Immediately following the plans to ban alcohol in Kerala, bar owners and hotel owners petitioned the order and it was finally diluted to allow bars to sell beer and wine.

Representative image. AFP.Representative image. AFP.

Representative image. AFP.

The State (India) has always had a problem with alcohol; this is partly due to MK Gandhi’s vociferous stance against the consumption of alcohol, which he made amply clear in his autobiography. Kushwant Singh wrote in his book, India: An introduction that Gandhi considered alcohol to be “an unmitigated evil”. After independence, the Government of India adopted his views into the Directive Principles of State Policy, though not enforceable as law, are often the guiding principles behind the laws. Article 47 states that the “State shall endeavour to bring about prohibition of the use except for medicinal purposes of intoxicating drinks and of drugs which are injurious to health.”

In the past, Andhra Pradesh tried to enforce Prohibition between 1958 to 1969 and then from 1994 to 1997, but the grand project was abandoned primarily because of bootlegging and excessive corruption. Gujarat has been a ‘dry state’, but according to Nalin Mehta and Mona G Mehta in the 2013 book, Gujarat Beyond Gandhi: Identity, Society and Conflict  there is significant trade, production and consumption of alcohol in the state and refer to the existence of “illicit alcohol” that is not subject to quality control. So, essentially a ban is clearly not the solution as the Mehta’s note in their research, where a health official they interviewed said that alcohol abuse contributes to 50 percent of liver failure cases in the state.

One of the major reasons cited by political parties is that they want to impose alcohol bans for the benefit of women and that it would help bring down the domestic violence incidences. It is true that one of the first ‘collective women struggles’, the Telangana and Tebagha rebellions where women joined in to raise their voices against alcohol and price rise. In Manipur, the ‘Meira Paibis’ rallied on to put an end to the sale and consumption of alcohol, the objective? According to an Economic and Political Weekly article, it was to “curb social evils like domestic violence resulting from alcoholism”. This ‘woman argument’ is not just specific to India, Carrie Nation in the US ‘hatcheted’ bars and led the movement to ban alcohol in Texas in the early 1900s.

Well, this is great for women, they are being saved from domestic violence, you might think. But, that is an easy train of thought to catch. Such arguments only understand women’s roles as mothers, daughters and someone related to a male member i.e. the much hated/abused word in the feminist movement: patriarchy. This argument also seeks to colour the problem of domestic violence as something ‘external’. So essentially, it is the alcohol which is making men abuse their wives and daughters. Doesn’t this argument sound familiar? It’s not the rapist, it is the clothes.

Mangai, a theatre practitioner and women’s activist brings out an important point that these bans ultimately don’t tackle with the real problem at hand: which is not consumption of alcohol, but alcoholism. “The state is not addressing the issue of substance abuse or how the younger generation is getting affected by it. There needs to be a demarkation between the consumption of alcohol and alcoholism that leads to the women of the household bearing the brunt of the situation,” she says. Perhaps, the State should work on awareness-oriented solutions than banning a product and therefore opening itself up to a host of other problems: corruption, boot-legging, illicit-alcohol related deaths.

Currently, what we have is a conflict between the increasingly economically liberal economy of the country that is still straddling with the vestiges of Gandhian principles. But the alcohol industry is a tough revenue to do away with. The Tamil Nadu government estimates liquor earnings at Rs 21,800 crore, Kerala yields Rs 8,000 crore and West Bengal’s revenue is Rs 2,600 crore.

Reasons for the bans could be many, but essentially bans on alcohol come from a place of imposing certain values on the society that a particular group deems fit. However, it is important to note that alcohol is not the problem, its abuse is. Even in our rich history, as Mangai says, there was no morality attached to the consumption of “kall” (toddy), men and women, both, consumed it without accruing social judgement upon themselves. Sangam literature has enough poetry to justify its use without the claustrophobic clauses of morality.

The questions that we need to ask are how can we solve the problem of alcoholism and how do we differentiate between social/casual/occasional drinking and abusing a substance. How can we regulate a product without creating a ready-made platter of corruption and illegal trade for the taking?

National Anthem row: Why Tagore would have been ashamed of modern India

Every core of his being would probably have been hurt by the way the first stanza of his poem has been used to attack people.

Rabindranath Tagore

If Rabindranath Tagore – the original proponent of #AwardsWapsi – had been alive today, he would have been shocked to see the national discourse today and the amount of jingoism that passes for patriotism. Every core of his being would probably have been hurt by the way the first stanza of his poem has been used to attack people. Recently, a Muslim family was hounded out of a movie theatre at PVR Kurla, Mumbai for allegedly not standing up during the anthem.The video showing the family being thrown out of the cinema hall was shared on YouTube. According to HT, a police officer of Ghatkopar station was quoted as saying: “The manager said they asked the family to leave after people protested. However, there was nothing to do with the religion of the family if they are Hindu or Muslim. There is no case registered.”<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The debate about standing up for the national anthem, played in theatres in Maharashtra before the screening of a film, has cropped up time and again. In 2014, Bollywood actress Preity Zinta threw out an audience member who hadn’t stood up for the national anthem. Last month, Kushal Tandon and Ameesha Patel had a Twitter fight over the latter not stand up during the national anthem because she was menstruating. Why Tagore would have been disturbed From all that I’ve read about Rabindranath Tagore and what he’s written, I don’t think he would’ve been very happy about people using his words to harm others. Whether someone wishes to choose to stand or sit for the national anthem is their choice. Patriotism is not compulsory. We do not have to love the nation. If we insist on that, we’re acting like fascists. And frankly, there’s far more to patriotism than standing up during the national anthem. Tagore – an ‘anti-national’ by modern-day standards If Tagore had been alive, he probably would’ve been tarred with the ‘anti-national’ brush that a lot of people tend to use for those who criticise any aspect of India. Later in his life, Tagore had become disillusioned with the idea of nationhood. He felt that that by insisting on nationalism, we were following the fallacies of our colonial rulers and the rest of Europe.He had written: “India has never had a real sense of nationalism. Even though from childhood I had been taught that the idolatry of Nation is almost better than reverence for God and humanity, I believe I have outgrown that teaching, and it is my conviction that my countrymen will gain truly their India by fighting against that education which teaches them that a country is greater than the ideals of humanity.”Tagore wasn’t just against any particular nation – he was like John Lennon – against the very idea of nationhood. He added: “I am not against one nation, in particular, but against the general idea of all nations.” The idea seemed anti-Indian to him, and that India’s reverence for ‘God and Humanity’ needn’t be replaced by the European concept of national identity. His views made him unpopular, not only in India but in countries like Russia, Germany, Spain, US and Japan as well.What does the law say? In 1986, three students in Kerala, belonging to the Christian denomination of Jehovah’s Witnesses, were expelled for refusing to sing the national anthem. The Kerala High Court upheld the expulsion saying that there was nothing in the anthem which would hurt anyone’s religious beliefs. The Supreme Court, on the other hand, reversed the decision saying their ‘personal views and reactions are irrelevant’.The Supreme Court added: “There is no provision of law which obliges anyone to sing the National Anthem nor is it disrespectful to the National Anthem if a person who stands up respectfully when the National Anthem is sung does not join the singing. Proper respect is shown to the National Anthem by standing up when the National Anthem is sung.It will not be right to say that disrespect is shown by not joining in the singing. Standing up respectfully when the National Anthem is sung but not singing oneself clearly does not either prevent the singing of the National Anthem or cause disturbance to an assembly engaged in such singing so as to constitute the offence mentioned in s. 3 of the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act”.But what about sitting through the national anthem? Suhrith Parthasarthy, a Madras HC advocate told India Today: “It is not only ridiculous but unnecessary as well. The law is not clear and does not prescribe any punishment for not standing, moreover, a person has the right to exercise his freedom of expression.” It’s time all of us recognised the right that other people have. Shouting down someone or attacking someone for not standing up during the national anthem is about as patriotic as throwing ink at someone’s face because you don’t agree with their views or shouting jingoistic slogans on TV panels.It’s time we learned to respect other people’s views, even if we don’t agree with it. That’s the true idea of tolerance and what India is about. British philosopher and economist John Stuart Mill famously said, “If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person was of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind.” This is a democracy, and a democracy does not push the will of the majority on the minority or the minority on the majority, despite how outlandish it might sound. We’ve no right to force our narrow view on patriotism upon them. In fact, whenever we’re hounding people for not standing up for the anthem, we’re simply paying great disrespect to another one of Tagore’s works – Where the Mind is Without Fear.

Patriotism debate over national anthem

A video showing a group of people being thrown out of a cinema for not standing to the national anthem triggers a debate on patriotism in India.

Maharashtra: Activists slam Shani temple tradition banning women’s entry

Terming the incident as “ridiculous”, Maharashtra’s former Additional Chief Secretary (Home) Chandra Iyengar said, “God has created everyone equal and who are we to force anyone to follow specific process of offering devotion or faith. At least God never said so that a woman, even if she is menstruating, cannot enter a temple.

Women activists slammed the tradition of prohibiting entry to the fairer sex at a famous Shani shrine in Ahmednagar district and the “purification rituals” which were performed by villagers after a woman recently entered there.On Saturday, the age-old practice of prohibiting women from offering prayers at the shrine located in Shani Shingnapur village was “breached” when a woman climbed the security barricade to the ‘chauthara’ (platform) where the idol is installed and offered prayers, before disappearing in the crowd.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Yesterday, the villagers had performed a ‘dudh abhishek’ (milk purification) of the idol and observed a ‘bandh’ in the morning to protest the incident. Startled, the temple committee also swung into action today and suspended seven security personnel.Terming the incident as “ridiculous”, Maharashtra’s former Additional Chief Secretary (Home) Chandra Iyengar said, “God has created everyone equal and who are we to force anyone to follow specific process of offering devotion or faith. At least God never said so that a woman, even if she is menstruating, cannot enter a temple.She said that since religious faith of a person is a specific and a crucial issue, hence government cannot interfere in such cases as it has to follow the law of the land (administration of the religious places).However, if these rules are made by human beings only, then it is time to rethink them, the former bureaucrat said.”It is my firm belief that God has not provisioned such discrimination…we should not forget that there are ample number of women who also support such belief (of prohibiting women from entering temples),” she said.Notably, a huge controversy had broken out in 2006 after Kannada actress Jayamala claimed to have entered the Sabarimala temple in Kerala during her prime and touched the idol of the presiding deity, claiming that she was pushed into the sanctum sanctorum by the surging crowd.Slamming such practices, human rights activist and former bureaucrat Abha Singh said the trustees or governing bodies are exercising their power as if they are “extra constitutional authorities” like Khaps.”These prohibitions are serious violation of Articles 14 and 15 of our Constitution which provide every citizen the right to equality and rules out any discrimination on the basis of religion and gender,” she said.”Such outdated religious bigotism should be done away with as soon as possible and government must encourage such women who want to do so (pray at such temples) without having any malice or vendetta,” she said.Taking potshopts at the temple management, National Commission for Women’s (NCW) former member Nirmala Samant Prabhawalkar said, “Only experts on religious issues could have decided whether the temple became impure by the entry of a woman or not, and surely not by these people. They are just caretakers of the temple.”These rules (of denying women’s entry into the temple) were made 400 to 500 years back and now society sees women as equal to men, she said.Taking umbrage to the purification rituals performed by the villagers, Prabhawalkar said, “I am also a trustee of Siddhivinayak temple in Mumbai. I know how to manage the day-to-day affairs of the temple where people throng with lots of hope and faith. So in this case, administration should have exercised some restraint while declaring temple as impure.””Hence, I feel that performing purification rituals by milk was unwarranted and I vehemently oppose such a move,” she added.

Bar bribery scam: LDF holds protest in Kerala Assembly

Kerala Bar Hotels’ Association working president Biju Ramesh has alleged that Babu took a bribe to reduce the bar licence fee.

LDF protests in Kerala Assembly

ANI
The Left Democratic Front (LDF) staged a protest in the Kerala Assembly on Monday demanding the resignation of Excise Minister K. Babu for his alleged involvement in the bar bribery scam.There was a proposal to hike the bar license fee to Rs. 25 lakh but the fee was fixed at Rs. 23 lakh in a meeting chaired by Babu. Kerala Bar Hotels’ Association working president Biju Ramesh has alleged that Babu took a bribe to reduce the bar licence fee.

Government to introduce special identity cards for differently-abled people

Gehlot also announced a financial aid of Rs 19 crores for completing the project. He congratulated the Kerala Government for preparing an authentic data bank of differently-abled citizens in the state.
File Photo

Revealing that the Centre was planning to introduce special identity cards for all persons with disabilities in the country, Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Thawar Chand Gehlot has said that it would enable them to claim the benefits of various government welfare schemes.Gehlot also announced a financial aid of Rs 19 crores for completing the project. He congratulated the Kerala Government for preparing an authentic data bank of differently-abled citizens in the state.”The upcoming Accessible India Campaign – Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan – would strive to promote the concept of universal accessibility for all, especially for persons with disabilities. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch the project on December 3 and districts including Kozhikode would get special funds from the government to facilitate the implementation of the project,” he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Explaining the steps taken by the Centre for the welfare of the differently-abled, Gehlot said the government has extended pre-matric and post-matric scholarships to all eligible students.”The Union Government has also requested state governments to come up with proposals for the welfare and rehabilitation of the differently-abled,” he added.

Malayalam director Ali Akbar hits out at Muslim cleric, claims he was abused as a child

On Saturday, Kanthapuram had rejected Rajeena’s claims that there were instances of child abuse in madrasas and asked for evidence.

Kanthapuram

Malayalam director Ali Akbar has backed up journalist VP Rajeena’s claims about child sex abuse in madrasas and claimed that he had been abused as a kid. Challenging Muslim cleric Kanthapuram Abu Backer Musliyar, Akbar said that the ‘ustaad’ who abused him was still alive and he would be willing to reveal details if Kanthapuram wanted. On Saturday, Kanthapuram had rejected Rajeena’s claims that there were instances of child abuse in madrasas and asked for evidence.Akbar was quoted by saying India Today: “if he’s ready to accept my challenge I am ready to reveal the details. Why should I be scared of telling the truth? It is true that I am a victim of abuse at a madarsa.” Kanthapuram had also said that gender inequality was un-Islamic and women didn’t possess the mental strength that men did. “How many female heart surgeons do you see in the world? They do not have the mental strength. Men do. Women will shiver before the controlling power of a man. Women have other capabilities that men don’t. They are meant for that only,” said Kanthapuram was quoted saying.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Related read: (Kerala journalist attacked over her Facebook post on child sexual abuse in madrasas)

Now, a cartoon app on Kerala CM Oommen Chandy

Haku’s Oommen Chandy cartoon

Called ‘Athivekem Bahudoorem’, this mobile app was launched on Monday in Kerala. But what is unique about it is that it features 155 cartoons on Kerala CM Oommen Chandy. The app’s name is derived from the Chandy’s government tagline.All the cartoons have been drawn by freelance artist Harikumar, 50, who is known as Haku. In a press release, Haku stated that each 9of the cartoons will have a theme and be based on Chandy’s real-life reactions to various issues like the bar bribery scandal, solar scam, and controversies related to the government like the Vizhinjam port and Smart City issue.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Valmeeki.com, a digital publishing house in Kochi, has created the app. You can download the app for Rs 10 and if you want the print version of the cartoons you can buy the book for Rs 125. The 156-page book is published by Sahithi Publications which is edited by former state minister VC Kabeer. The app and the book were released by Kerala CM Chandy himself on Monday.

Kerala: Govt orders restriction on employees’ creative works; does a re-think

On November 11, the Kerala government had issued an order that all state employees have to get first get permission and submit an affidavit that their creative work is not meant for profit before they pursue it. Once they get approval, they could go ahead.

Kerala CM Oommen Chandy

On November 11, the Kerala government had issued an order that all state employees have to get first get permission and submit an affidavit that their creative work is not meant for profit before they pursue it. Once they get approval, they could go ahead.This was applicable to “literary, creative, academic and cultural activities” and even appearing on TV talk shows. There were widespread protests against this order and Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has now asked the state secretary to look into the matter. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>According to a report in The Indian Express, this order was related to Section 48 of Kerala Government Servants Conduct Rules which allowed them to pursue creative activities with prior permission.However, since many employees were doing it without permission, this new order was passed states the report. The daily quoted CPM-affiliated Kerala Secretariat Employees Association general secretary M S Bijukuttan as saying, “We would strongly object to any move to curtail the literary and cultural activities of employees.”V S Achuthanandan, the Opposition leader, was quoted as saying that the order showed the ‘Fascist face’ of the state government. However, state Public Relations Minister K C Joseph has clarified that state employees could engage in “literary activities within the confines of service rules.”

Ensure attendance of staff in I-Day, R-Day functions: Kerala HC to government

A bench, comprising Chief Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice A M Shaffique, issued the order a PIL by one Nimisha K of the city complaining about non-participation of a large number of government employees in the celebrations.

The Kerala High Court on Monday directed the state government to ensure attendance of officers and staff during Independence Day and Republic Day celebrations.A bench, comprising Chief Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice A M Shaffique, issued the order a PIL by one Nimisha K of the city complaining about non-participation of a large number of government employees in the celebrations. The court asked the state to implement circular and directions issued by it regarding participation of government employees on national day celebrations in its true spirit.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It said if the directions were not implemented, appropriate penal measures should be taken. The state government informed the court that it had issued a circular on November 5, 2015 compelling the presence of government employees at their offices during the national day celebrations. The court said the directions will be applicable to government employees, educational institutions, including aided, and state public sector units.

Social media reacts strongly to Kerala Education Minister’s comments

The Minister recently stated that boys and girls shouldn’t sit together in class on campus.

Kerala Education Minister Rabb

On November 17, Kerala Education Minister PK Abdu Rabb stated, “As education minister I don’t agree to the practice of boys and girls sitting next to each other in the classroom.” He further added that they could next to each other on chairs, but not together on benches.Predictably, his comments have not gone down well with many people in Kerala and on social media. Meanwhile, there have also been protests in Kerala on the statement. On Wednesday, students from the Ernakulam Law College formed a human chain in protest against the Rabb’s comments.The New Indian Express has quoted Tito Antony, KSU Ernakulam district committee president, as saying, “These are times in which men and women scale new heights irrespective of their gender. The minister’s comment is ridiculous. I think he doesn’t know which time he is living in. We will come out strongly against such institutions which campaign to bar boys and girls from behaving normally.”

From revolution to ‘racket’: All you need to know about the ‘Kiss of Love’ case

‘Kiss of Love’ protest leaders, Rahul Pasupalam and his wife Reshmi R. Nair were arrested on the charges of allegedly running an ‘online sex racket’ on Wednesday in Thiruvananthapuram. The couple spearheaded the ‘Kiss of Love’ movement in Kochi last year much to the chagrin of Hindu right-wing parties such as Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), Shiva Sena, Bajrang Dal and Hindu Sena. It is alleged that the couple were in cohorts with a group involved in supplying minors and young children to pedophiles, reported The Hindustan Times.

Here’s a detailed look on all you need to know about the incident so far.

The case

According to various reports, the police chanced upon the couple in a complicated network of online sex trafficking. The Kerala state police was investigating a complaint on a Facebook page, ‘Kochu Sundarikal’ (Beautiful girls), where pictures of young schoolgirls showed up. According to The News Minute, the police was following up a complaint by a resident of Thiruvananthapuram who was also associated with the ‘Kiss of Love’ movement. After following the leads by one particular woman, who was involved in sex work, the police subsequently tracked two minors who were brought in from Bengaluru for similar purposes.

Image courtesy: PTIImage courtesy: PTI

Image courtesy: PTI

As far as the arrests go, The News Minute reported that 11 people were arrested. Four, among the 11, were taken into custody, of those, two were women and one minor. The report also said that while they were being taken into custody, three people escaped in a car, including two women and a man. Infamous gangster, Ali Akbar was one among those arrested; he is allegedly involved in many sex-trafficking cases, according to The Hindustan Times.

Rahul Pasupalan’s friend told The News Minute that the police have to prove their case before declaring statements and that Kerala police had previously fabricated the Isro spy scandal case using a sex scandal angle.

The movement

The ‘Kiss of Love’ protests started in Kerala in late 2014 when an unruly mob of attackers demolished a coffee shop in Kozhikode, a city in northern Kerala. The mob carried out the attack condemning alleged immoral activity of public display of affection by a few couples. This incident sparked the initial protests and, as the movement gained traction, it spread to other cities like New Delhi and Kolkata.

On 2 November, the Facebook page called, ‘Kiss of Love’ (currently at close to one lakh fifty thousand followers) asked the youth in Kerala to participate in a non-violent protest at Marine Drive in Kochi.

During the protests, several participants publicly displayed affection to take a stand against moral policing. The campaign received severe opposition from right-wing political parties and the Ernakulam wing of Kerala Student Union.

The Times of India reported that the Hindu Sena were standing in favour of ‘Indian culture’; while they were not against love, they were against public display of affection, which they compared to “walking around naked”. The movement since then has gained momentum and has become a way for youngsters to protest the increasing restrictions on civil liberties and unruly administration of moral policing in the name of protecting ‘Indian culture’ from the ‘evils of western influence’. The movement has generally received favourable responses with a consistent base of followers on social media.

Kissed by the devil: ‘Kiss of Love’ protesters held for running ‘online sex racket’ in Kerala

Thiruvanathapuram: On Tuesday, charges were filed against Rahul Pasupalan and his wife Reshmi R. Nair for allegedly running an online sex racket. Rahul and his wife Reshmi were leading the protests and spearheaded the ‘Kiss of Love’ movement in Kochi last year. The campaign used kissing as a form of protest to oppose the restrictions on civil liberties and strict moral policing by authorities. It was heavily criticized by Hindu right-wing parties such as the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Shiv Sena, Bajrang Dal and Hindu Sena.

Around 50 people were arrested for participating in the 'Kiss of Love' protest. PTIAround 50 people were arrested for participating in the 'Kiss of Love' protest. PTI

Around 50 people were arrested for participating in the ‘Kiss of Love’ protest last year. PTI

They couple was arrested after the police received a tip off and they were among the eight who were arrested on these charges, however, The News Minute reports that 11 people were arrested in relation to this case. The News Minute also reported that four among the 11 taken into custody were women and one minor. They also reported that while they were being taken into custody, three people escaped in a car including two women and a man.

It is alleged that the couple were in cohorts with a group involved in supplying minors and young children to pedophiles, reported The Hindustan Times. The state police’s cyber cell stumbled upon the racket during their investigating a complaint on a Facebook page, ‘Kochu Sundarikal’ (Beautiful girls) that surfaced carrying pictures of school girls, reported The News Minute. The police followed up on the complaint by a resident of Thiruvananthapuram who was also associated with the ‘Kiss of Love’ movement. The police followed leads by one particular woman who was involved in sex work and tracked down two minors who had been brought in from Bengaluru, reported The News Minute. The complaint was filed by another Facebook page, ‘Sexually Frustrated Mallu’, members of which, were also part of the ‘Kiss of Love’ group, according to The News Minute.

Five people were arrested on the basis of the complaint including the page administrator, a man from Northern Kerala who was operating out of India but was in India at the time, according to The News Minute. Infamous gangster, Ali Akbar was one among those arrested and is allegedly involved in many sex-trafficking cases; two girls from Bengaluru were also arrested, according to The Hindustan Times. The police said that they have taken the couple in for questioning and will decide the next course of action.

Rahul Pasupalan’s friend told The News Minute that the police have to prove their case before declaring statements and that Kerala police had previously fabricated the ISRO spy scandal case using a sex scandal angle.

Kerala Education Minister doesn’t want boys and girls to sit next to each other

Thiruvananthapuram: In remarks that have triggered a controversy, Kerala Education Minister P K Abdu Rabb on Tuesday said he was not in favour of boys and girls sitting next to each other in college campuses.

However, he said he had nothing against students sitting in separate chairs together in the class.

P K Abdu Rabb. CNN IBNP K Abdu Rabb. CNN IBN

P K Abdu Rabb. CNN IBN

“I have no idea if boys and girls are sitting intermingled in any college in the state,” he told media personnel.

“I have nothing against students sitting in separate chairs,” he said, adding he had not received any complaints from Farooq College where the management had suspended a student for allegedly defying its directive not to share seats with girls in the campus.

Dinu K, a first year student of the college, had been suspended last month for being part of a group of boys and girls who sat next to each other on a bench in the classroom in their campus, going against the management’s diktat.

The students were asked to bring their parents and tender written apologies for ‘defying disciplinary rules’.

Though all the others complied, Dinu refused to do so saying he had not committed any crime, following which he was suspended. He moved the Kerala High Court which stayed his suspension.

An aided college lecturer in Malappuram was dismissed from service recently for allegedly supporting through a Facebook comment the students of Farooq College who are protesting against the gender discrimination.

While the lecturer, C P Muhammed Shafeeq, guest lecturer of English department of Sullamusalam Science college, Areekode, claimed he had been suspended for supporting Dinu, the college management said it was for “obscene” language used in the post.

Meanwhile, various students unions, including Kerala Students Union and All India Students Federation have threatened to go on agitation if the minister does not withdraw his statement.

Criticising the minister’s remarks, T N Seema, CPI(M)’S Rajya sabha MP, said it was “against the state’s educational values, progressive outlook, unsophisticated and distorted.”

PTI

Kerala Khap Panchayat? Education Minister doesn’t want boys & girls to share seats

I have no idea if boys and girls are sitting intermingled in any college in the state,” he told media personnel.

PK Abdurabb

Image Credit: Wikicommons
In remarks that have triggered a controversy, Kerala Education Minister P K Abdu Rabb said he was not in favour of boys and girls sitting next to each other in college campuses. However, he said he had nothing against students sitting in separate chairs together in the class. “I have no idea if boys and girls are sitting intermingled in any college in the state,” he told media personnel.”I have nothing against students sitting in separate chairs,” he said, adding he had not received any complaints from Farooq College where the management had suspended a student for allegedly defying its directive not to share seats with girls in the campus. Dinu K, a first year student of the college, had been suspended last month for being part of a group of boys and girls who sat next to each other on a bench in the classroom in their campus, going against the management’s diktat.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The students were asked to bring their parents and tender written apologies for ‘defying disciplinary rules’. Though all the others complied, Dinu refused to do so saying he had not committed any crime, following which he was suspended. He moved the Kerala High Court which stayed his suspension. An aided college lecturer in Malappuram was dismissed from service recently for allegedly supporting through a Facebook comment the students of Farooq College who are protesting against the gender discrimination. While the lecturer, C P Muhammed Shafeeq, guest lecturer of English department of Sullamusalam Science college, Areekode, claimed he had been suspended for supporting Dinu, the college management said it was for “obscene” language used in the post. Meanwhile, various students unions, including Kerala Students Union and All India Students Federation have threatened to go on agitation if the minister does not withdraw his statement.

Kerala Education Minister says boys and girls should not sit together in class

PK Abdu Rabb

Kerala Minister for Education PK Abdu Rabb has stated that he doesn’t agree with boys and girls sitting together in classes. He made this statement on Tuesday. There has been a controversy in the state over the recent expulsion of a male student from Farook College in Kozhikode after he sat with girls. The Education Minister stated that either in his personal opinion or as a minister, he didn’t agree with the concept of boys and girls sitting together in class, Malayala Manorama reported. Dinu K, a male student, was expelled from Farook College, but the Kerala High Court had stayed the order. Despite this, many in the state have been averse to the idea of boys and girls sitting together on campus. A teacher from another college was asked to leave for posted on his Facebook page that he didn’t agree with this gender discrimination. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As reported earlier, a Malayalam professor at Farook College reprimanded five boys and four girls for sitting together on a bench. They were told to return to college only with their guardians. A first year BA Sociology student, Dinu K, reportedly told media that the professor had told them boys and girls couldn’t sit together as it was against the rules of the college. When one of the female students told the professor that this was gender discrimination, the professor allegedly scolded her and asked students unwilling to follow rules to leave the classroom. The nine students reportedly had to leave the classroom. Dinu who spoke out about the gender discrimination and refused to give an apology letter, was expelled.

Kerala: Defeated Congress woman candidate attacked, hair cut off

She is now admitted in the Parassala Government Hospital as she suffered blows on her neck and head.

Google Maps
On Thursday, a woman Congress candidate, who contested against the CPM in the Kerala block panchayat elections (by 814 votes), was attacked by two men who even went to the extent of cutting off her hair. A report in Malayala Manorama states that N Sathikumari was the UDF candidate of Kolliyil ward of the Perumkadavila block panchayat. She is a former DCC member and president of women’s wing of Neyyatinkkara NSS Taluk Union.Apparently, she was attacked by two men near the Nirakathala temple in Amaravila. She was returning home when two men started to follow her from the byroad near Nirakathala temple adds the report. When she was attacked, the men asked her why she contested the elections against CPM candidate. When she fell down, the men cut off part of her hair with a knife and escape on a bike. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>She is now admitted in the Parassala Government Hospital as she suffered blows on her neck and head. Saithikumari has filed a police complaint stating that the men mentioned a name of a CPM leader from Udiyankulangara when they attacked her. The police have registered a case and are now investigating the matter.

Travancore Maharaja’s Temple Entry Proclamation and what it means to Kerala 80 years later

On November 12, 1936, the birthday of the young Maharaja of Travancore, Sri Chitra Thirunal Balarama Varma, he issued a proclamation in his capital, Trivandrum. The proclamation said, in its entirety:

‘Profoundly convinced of the truth and validity of our religion, believing that it is based on divine guidance and on all-comprehending toleration, knowing that in its practice it has throughout the centuries, adapted itself to the needs of changing times, solicitous that none of our Hindu subjects should, by reason of birth or caste or community, be denied the consolation and the solace of the Hindu faith, we have decided and hereby declare, ordain and command that, subject to such rules and conditions as may be laid down and imposed by us for preserving their proper atmosphere and maintaining their rituals and observances, there should henceforth be no restriction placed on any Hindu by birth or religion on entering or worshipping at temples controlled by us and our Government.’

To us today, this may seem commonplace, but for that time and place it was revolutionary. For this was Travancore, which Swami Vivekananda had called “a lunatic asylum” for the indignities heaped on its lower castes. Today, Kerala is probably the least (overtly) casteist part of the country, although it is almost certainly the most (covertly) communal part as well. But nobody questions egalitarianism. This edict was as powerful as the ideals of the French Revolution: liberty, equality and fraternity.
But just as the revolution had its dark side, so does Kerala’s social revolution: the egalitarianism of this proclamation brought with it a reverse discrimination, so that today the Hindus are at the receiving end of what is for all practical purposes an apartheid: in every way, they are behind the Christians and Muslims, who also benefit from official benefits for them.

Image: Rajeev Srinivasan/FirstpostImage: Rajeev Srinivasan/Firstpost

At the entrance to the Travancore royal palace on the 103rd birthday of Sri Chitra Tirunal. on 10 November, 2015. Image: Rajeev Srinivasan/Firstpost

Be that as it may, a little history lesson is in order. What is now Kerala was, like most of South India around 1500 years ago, heavily Buddhist and Jain: and there are occasional discoveries of seated Buddhas by farmers tilling the fields. There is evidence from Xieun Tsang, the Chinese traveler, who described his trip to Sabarimala where he said the presiding deity was worshipped simultaneously as both Siva and the Avalokitesvara Padmapani.

And I am quoting Communist leader EMS Namboodiripad, so those of you about to outrage at me may calm down. An army of Hindus arrived circa 600CE, headed by Nambudiri Brahmins and defeated the Buddhists, imposing Hindu culture again over the area. Those Buddhists who collaborated became ‘high-caste’ sudras (eg Nairs), and those that didn’t became ‘low-caste’ (eg Ezhavas). This invasion is immortalized in the story of Mahabali, who ‘ruled over a kingdom where all were equal’, and was sent to Patala: thus exiled.

This situation continued for over a thousand years, partly because it was a stable equilibrium wherein all parties knew their roles in society, even those who were oppressed and at the bottom of the pile as feudal peasant untermenschen. There were also small groups of Christians (the first of them arrived around 345CE, contrary to popular mythology, as refugees led by Thomas of Canaan, a Syrian merchant), Jews, and Muslims.

The next big disruption was when the Portuguese, instigated by Francis Xavier, invaded and converted at gunpoint most of the coastal fisherfolk. They were annoyed to find the Syrian Christians who had never heard of the Pope (their allegiance was to the Patriarch of Antioch, Syria) and so proceeded to persecute and forcibly convert them as well.

Next came Tipu Sultan around 1790. He conquered Malabar and parts of Cochin, but was thwarted from entering Travancore by the use of a ‘river bomb’, wherein Travancore soldiers purposely burst a dam, causing a wall of water to course down the Periyar river. This flooded Tipu’s batteries and killed his troops, forcing him to retreat. But Tipu’s advance had caused a large number of Hindus to flee persecution and settle in Travancore. Many Hindus were also converted at swordpoint.

The net result of Tipu’s invasion was that Travancore became impoverished and thus dependent on the British, who took full advantage of the situation. They forced the regent queen in 1819 to donate Rs. 10,000 (an astronomical sum then) to set up the Valiya Palli church at Kottayam, and large-scale conversions of Hindus began, because they offered poor, low-caste people basic education if they converted.

In 1819, there were, according to the Travancore Manual, 6% Muslims and 6% Christians in Travancore. But under the stress of British overlordship, high tributes extracted by them, and the threat of conversion, paradoxically Hindu society turned destructively inwards and became dysfunctional, even suicidal. Lower castes bore the brunt of it, leading to extraordinary practices such as not only untouchability, but also un-seeability. Also, bizarrely precise laws of untouchability and even un-shadowability were in effect: a Nair must stand at least 5 feet away from a Nambudiri, an Ezhava 10 feet, a Pulaya 15 feet, and so on.

One of the most ridiculous laws prevented lower-caste Hindus from not only going to temples, but even walking on the public roads around them. Unbelievably, they had a simple way around it: just convert, and then you can use the public roads. Thus a Sankaran merely had to become a Thomas or a Bashir, and he could automatically enjoy a lot more freedom! As a result of all this, by 1930, Travancore was 33% Christian, up from 6% in 1819: Ezhavas and Nadars converted in huge numbers (data from the Travancore Manual).

Increasing awareness of their rights by the lower-castes, especially the Ezhavas, led to agitations for more rights, including entry into government jobs and the Praja-sabha (Assembly) for them. The leadership of Sree Narayana Guru and the poet Kumaran Asan ensured this anger was constructive, and not destructive. But the Vaikom Satyagraha, 1924, about access to the roads around the Vaikom Siva temple, crystallized the anger, and Ezhavas began to discuss en masse conversion to Christianity.

It was in this situation that the wise Maharaja, supported by his brilliant prime minister C P Ramaswamy Iyer, decided that natural justice and sheer decency indicated that temple entry should be granted. Thus the events of November 12, 1936. All Hindus could now, with dignity, go to all temples. In fact, police officers were required to escort low-caste people there. A great-uncle of mine, a dentist, recounted how the very lowest caste people had been led to believe that their eyes would burst if they entered temples, and so it was necessary to demonstrate to them that no such thing would happen.

The net result of all this, unfortunately, was that the previously oppressed became enamored with the siren song of radical egalitarianism and became Communists. To this day, they remain so, thus enabling Communism to retain a foothold in Kerala.

The royals of Travancore, who ruled as regents to the real sovereign Sri Padmanabha, had defeated the Dutch (Colachel 1741) and Tipu (Aluva 1790), and remained one of the best kingdoms in the country, retrieved their lost honor by this far-sighted and bold move in 1936. It was a landmark declaration, no less remarkable than the successes of human rights movements elsewhere.

The man who refused to vote for his mother

Why this man refused to vote for his mother

Defiant Mani resigns from Kerala cabinet in wake of bribery case

Thiruvananthapuram: A defiant Kerala Finance Minister K M Mani, against whom an FIR had been registered in the bar bribery case, resigned tonight after pressure mounted on him from the ruling Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) to quit.

A day after the High Court upheld a Vigilance Court order for further investigations in the case, 82-year-old Mani, who put up a stiff fight to stay in office, however, had to yield to pressure from Congress, the lead partner which stood firm stating that the resignation was inevitable.

KM Mani. IBNLiveKM Mani. IBNLive

KM Mani. IBNLive

Kerala congress chief whip, Thomas Unniyadan, has also submitted his resignation.

Mani announced his decision to resign after day long parleys with his party colleagues and made it clear that his party will continue to provide unstinting support to Chandy and UDF.

Accepting the resignations, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, however, said Mani’s decision to resign was his own and neither the Congress nor the UDF had compelled him to do so.

Chandy said even though the High Court had not pronounced him guilty in the case, Mani’s decision to resign was to uphold high political and democratic values.

Earlier in the day putting the UDF into crisis, Mani tried to prevail upon his party colleague and Irrigation Minister P J Joseph and Chief Whip Thomas Unniyadan, also to resign along with him.

However, after Joseph refused to yield, Mani, the seniormost legislator in the state, finally had no other option, but to give in and resign.

As Mani announced his resignation at his official residence here tonight, Joseph and two of his loyal MLAs – T U Kuruvilla and Mons Joseph were conspicuous by their absence.

Kerala Congress(M), a powerful regional party and third largest coalition partner in the UDF, has nine MLAs, including rebel P C George, who announced on Tuesday that he would submit his resignation on November 12.

The party has a sizeable vote bank in the central Travancore area in the state, especially among Christians.

With the High Court making observations like Caesar’s wife should be above suspicion, clamour for Mani’s resignation grew from various quarters, including Congress.

However, Mani loyalists spun a new theory stating that the verdict was in fact favouring their leader and there was nothing against him to prompt his resignation.

Even as pressure mounted throughout the day on Mani to quit, the state capital, Thiruvananthapuram, witnessed hectic parleys among UDF leaders led by Chief Minister, Oommen Chandy, KPCC President V M Sudheeran and Home Minister, Ramesh Chennithala and IUML leader and Industries Minister P K Kunhalikutty.

The opposition CPI(M)-led LDF had already decided to intensify their agitation against Mani if he does not resign and announced that they will commence “indefinite satyagraha” in front of the Secretariat from Wednesday.

The resignation comes as a huge blow to Mani, who has completed 50 years as legislator and this was an ignominious exit for a leader who had been elected to the Assembly in 1965 from Pala, which has returned him all these years.

Mani’s troubles began after working president of Kerala state Bar Hotel Owners Association, Biju Ramesh, alleged in October last year that the Minister had demanded Rs 5 crore as bribe from the Association and accepted Rs 1 crore for renewal of licences of over 400 Indian made foreign liquor bars, triggering a political storm.

An FIR had been filed against Mani in the court last year after a ‘quick verfication’ by the Vigilance on the allegations made by Ramesh.

However, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and Mani had maintained that it was a politically motivated charge and had denied the allegations.

The final report, seeking closure of the case against Mani, was challenged by CPI(M) veteran and Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan and eight others who sought a further probe into the case.

Kerala had also witnessed a series of agitations by CPI(M)-led LDF demanding Mani’s resignation since the bar bribery allegations broke out.

The Assembly had also witnessed unprecedented violence with opposition and ruling front MLAs coming to blows over the issue when LDF members tried to prevent Mani from presenting the budget on March 13 this year.

Karingozhakkal Mani Mani, popularly known as ‘Mani sir’, is currently the chairman of empowered committee on GST.

He also holds the record of having presented the maximum number of 13 budgets in the state assembly as Finance Minister.

Mani was first elected to state assembly from his home constituency Pala in Kottayam district 1965. His son, Jose K Mani, is the the party MP from Kottayam.

Apart from Finance, Mani had also handled the Home and Revenue portfolioes.

Veteran Congress leader late K Karunakaran, Kerala Congress (B) leader, R Balakrishna Pillai and his son K B Ganesh Kumar, IUML leader P K Kunhalikutty, Kerala Congress (M) leader P J Joseph are among those who were forced to resign either due to court verdicts or other reasons.

This is the second resignation of a Minister in the Chandy cabinet that came to power in May 2011, the first being Ganesh Kumar in April 2013, who was forced to resign following complaints of domestic violence by his estranged wife.

PTI

Bar bribery scandal: Kerala CM Oommen Chandy accepts resignations of KM Mani and Unniyadan

On the replacement for Mani in the cabinet, Chandy said in a coalition set-up, it was the front leaders who make suggestions.
File Photo

Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy on Tuesday accepted the resignation of Finance Minister K M Mani in the wake of the High Court observations against him in the bar bribery case. Talking to reporters soon after receiving the resignation letters of Mani and that of government chief whip, Thomas Unniyadan, Chandy said “Mani has taken the decision to resign on his own.””Since the bar bribery case came up, UDF’s stand was that Mani had not done anything wrong. We still stand by it. The decision to resign was that of Mani in the wake of court observations,” Chandy said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”The High Court has not said that Mani was guilty. But still upholding high political and democratic values, he decided on his own free will to resign. We did not seek his resignation,” the chief minister said.On the replacement for Mani in the cabinet, he said in a coalition set-up, it was the front leaders who make suggestions.”There were media reports that the Congress high command had sought Mani’s resignation. That is not correct. It is natural that the high command will watch the development in the states. The state leadership had complete freedom to take a decision,” he added.All coalition partners had been asked to be in Thiruvanathapuram, the state capital, since this morning and Congress leaders held discussions with them. Mani was the seniormost legislator and minister in the cabinet and his services to UDF and state government will be an ‘asset’, Chandy said, expressing confidence that he would return to the cabinet “as early as possible after his name was cleared.”

Bar bribery scandal: Kerala Finance Minister KM Mani announces resignation

On Tuesday morning, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi had ruled out any immediate action against Mani insisting that it would be ‘unfair’ as the case against him was still being heard.

KM Mani
File Photo

Amidst major uproar for Kerala Finance Minister KM Mani’s resignation over bar bribery scandal, Mani on Tuesday came out and announced his resignation. Congress leader and government chief whip Thomas Unniyadan also has announced to resign from his post. Speaking to ANI, Mani said, “In accordance to the law, I hereby tender my resignation.” He also said that the resignation has been sent to Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy. On Tuesday morning, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi had ruled out any immediate action against Mani insisting that it would be ‘unfair’ as the case against him was still being heard.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”It will be unfair for the right of an accused…who cannot be treated as convict or semi-convict….Everybody has to hold their horses for a few days,” Singhvi had said. On Tuesday evening, Unniyadan had said that the Kerala High Court order on Monday was, in fact, not against Mani but in his favour as the Vigilance Court observations against the state finance minister had been expunged.”There is not even a word against Mani in the verdict. Why should he resign? The high court verdict is favouring the minister. Has the court said anywhere that Mani was guilty? And, so, there is no reason for him to resign,” he said.

Kerala bar bribery scandal: No need for KM Mani to resign, says Kerala Congress (M)

Thiruvananthapuram: Amidst the clamour for Kerala minister KM Mani’s resignation over the bar bribery scandal, his party Kerala Congress (M) on Tuesday said it saw no reason for their leader to step down, a day after high court cleared the decks for further investigation against him in the case.

KM Mani. IBNLive

KM Mani. IBNLive

In a startling claim, party leader and government chief whip Thomas Unniyadan said that the Kerala High Court order on Monday was, in fact, not against Mani but in his favour as the Vigilance Court observations against the state finance minister had been expunged.

“There is not even a word against Mani in the verdict. Why should he resign? The high court verdict is favouring the minister. Has the court said anywhere that Mani was guilty? And, so, there is no reason for him to resign,” he told reporters here, adding that the verdict had been wrongly interpreted by the media.

Referring to the calls in various quarters for Mani to step down, including demands within Congress itself, he countered that “no one had asked Mani to resign”.

Asked if Kerala Congress (M) was divided over the issue, Unniyadan said the party was united and “solidly” behind its leader.

According to reports, a section within KC(M), led by Irrigation Minister PJ Joseph and two MLAs loyal to him – TU Kuruvilla and Mons Joseph – were of the opinion that Mani should step down.

Industries Minister PK Kunhalikutty, leader of IUML, another key ally of the Congress-led ruling UDF, said leaders met today at the residence of Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and discussed the issue.

Meanwhile, Congress mouthpiece ‘Veekshanam’, in a hard-hitting editorial on Tuesday, said that Mani’s resignation was”inevitable”.

The KC(M) stand has pushed UDF into yet another crisis, days after its civic poll drubbing and in light of the high court’s adverse remarks against Mani yesterday, as the coalition is bracing for Assembly elections next year in the state.

Also, opposition CPI(M)-led LDF on Tuesday decided to intensify its agitation to put pressure on Mani to resign. According to LDF leaders, they will not allow Mani to move freely in the state and block him.

Mani’s stand was a challenge to the people and reflected his arrogance, they charged.

High court had on Monday cleared the decks for further investigation against Mani in the bar bribery case, observing that the common man should not feel that no probe is conducted when the accused is a minister.

Ordering further inquiries against Mani in the bar bribery case, the Vigilance Court in Thiruvananthapuram had on 29 October observed that there are “sufficient materials for making out a prima facie case”.

An FIR had been filed against Mani last year after a “quick verification” by the vigilance department of the charges levelled by Kerala State Bar Hotel Owners’ Association working President Biju Ramesh that the minister had accepted a Rs 1 crore bribe for renewal of licences of more than 400 Indian Made Foreign Liquor bars in the state.

PTI

Heavy rains lash Puducherry, but no threat of cyclone in Tamil Nadu

“We expect the landfall to be between Puducherry and Cuddalore.We’ve ensured enough stock of food grains and medicine too. Eight task forces are monitoring on the ground,” said Puducherry Collector D Manikandan.

A fisherman on a Chennai beach on Sunday

PTI
Normal life was hit in Puducherry with incessant rains pounding the Union Territory since Sunday, reports PTI.Official sources said to PTI that Puducherry and its suburbs recorded 13.3 cm rainfall in the 24 hours ending 8:30 am on Monday. Low lying areas were inundated.As Tamil Nadu is set to receive heavy rain throughout the day, schools and colleges will be shut in Puducherry, Chennai and adjoining districts Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur as well, reports NDTV. However, there is no longer a threat of cyclone.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The cyclonic depression is moving across the Bay of Bengal. It is expected to cross between Puducherry and Karaikal this noon.Thus, rainfall is expected in most parts of Tamil Nadu with heavy to very heavy rainfall over north coastal Tamil Nadu and Puducherry in the next 24 hours.”We expect the landfall to be between Puducherry and Cuddalore. We’ve ensured enough stock of food grains and medicine too. Eight task forces are monitoring on the ground,” said Puducherry Collector D Manikandan to NDTV.There will also be heavy showers in coastal Andhra Pradesh, south interior Karnataka and Kerala over the next 48 hours, reports NDTV.Fishermen in Tamil Nadu have been advised by the government not to venture out to sea in the next 24 to 48 hours.

Kerala High Court posts plea for stay on probe order against FM KM Mani to Nov 9

He submitted that in the vigilance’s inquiry report there was no evidence of demand and receipt of bribe.

Kerala High Court on Friday declined to grant an immediate stay on a Vigilance court order directing further probe against state Finance Minister K M Mani in the bar bribery scam and posted the matter to November 9. Justice B Kemal Pasha posted to November 9 the prayer for stay by the Vigilance department, saying, “We will finally hear the matter on Monday.” The Vigilance department pressed for a stay order today itself.Earlier, the Judge wanted the Vigilance and Anti Corruption bureau to explain as to how the department was aggrieved by the October 29 order of Special Vigilance Court in Thiruvananthapuram which had rejected its final report seeking to close the case against Mani, who has been accused of taking bribe to renew bar licences in 2014. The observations were made by Justice Pasha when an appeal by the Vigilance Additional DGP seeking to set aside the Vigilance Court order came up for hearing before him. State Advocate General KP Dandapani assailed the Vigilance court judgement, saying due to the order, the Vigilance department was not in a position to investigate cases in the state.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He submitted that in the vigilance’s inquiry report there was no evidence of demand and receipt of bribe. The only evidence was that one man had gone inside the house of the Finance Minister. Counsel for Leader of Opposition in Assembly, V S Achutanandan, contended that the Vigilance petition was not maintainable and the proper remedy was to file a revision petition. He also opposed the grant of stay. The Vigilance Court while ordering further probe into the bar bribery case against Mani had observed that there are “sufficient materials for making out a prima facia case.” Special Judge John K Illekadan had passed the order for further probe, rejecting the final report of the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau to close the case against Mani. “From an overall analysis of the materials available on records and from the events which followed in quick succession in the case, it can be seen that there are sufficient materials for making out a prima facia case in respect to the alleged incident,” the judge had observed.An FIR had been filed against Mani in Thiruvananthapuram court last year after a ‘quick verification’ by the Vigilance department on the allegations made by Kerala State Bar Hotel Owners’s Association working President Biju Ramesh that the Minister had accepted Rs one crore as bribe for renewal of licence to 470 Indian Made Foreign Liquor bars in the state.

© 2017 Yuva Sai Sagar. Theme by Anders Norén.