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

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Corruption charges are non-issue, don’t compare me to DMK, AIADMK: Anbumani Ramadoss tells Firstpost

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

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

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Salman Khan hit and run case: State to file appeal in January against actor’s acquittal

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Khan was acquitted of the charge of drunk and driving and causing the death of one person and injuring three others in 2002.

The State government on Wednesday informed the Bombay High court that it has decided to appeal against the acquittal order given to actor Salman Khan in the Supreme Court, in the 2002 hit and run case. Government pleader Abhinandan Vangyani said that the sanction has been given by the state law and judiciary department and the appeal would be filed in January. The Prosecution recently sent its recommendations and suggestions to the State Home department suggesting the points based on which the government can appeal against the judgment of the Bombay High Court acquitting actor Salman Khan of all charges. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The high court had while completely discarding the evidence of star prosecution witness deceased constable Ravindra Patil, had noted that the evidence was recorded before the magistrate court when the charge against Khan was under section 304 (A) (causing death due to rash and negligent act). However, when the serious charge of culpable homicide not amounting to murder was added and the case was being heard before the sessions court, Patil was not available for examination by the prosecution and cross-examination by the defence thus his evidence could not be accepted.High Court in its 304-page judgment said the prosecution has failed to prove all charges against Salman khan beyond a reasonable doubt. There were several infirmities and improvements in the testimony of witnesses. The court has also held that the prosecution is not able to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt and the trial court had erred in wrongly appreciating the evidence brought on record by the prosecution. It was also held that Khan was drunk and driving the car at the time of the accident.Khan was acquitted of the charge of drunk and driving and causing the death of one person and injuring three others in 2002.

India toughens law for juvenile crimes

The Indian parliament passes a bill which allows juveniles between 16 and 18 years of age to be tried as adults for serious crimes like rape or murder.

Animal Welfare Board wants annual Buffalo race in Karnataka to be cancelled

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The inspection reports explained the apparent violations of the specific conditions set by the Karnataka High Court under which it allowed Kambala, the letter said.

Buffalo Race also known as ‘Kambala’ event. Image Courtesy: Flickr.com

The Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has written to Karnataka Chief Secretary and Deputy Commissioners of Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts, asking them to take immediate steps to stop the ‘Kambala’ (annual Buffalo race in muddy fields) events in the current season.Acting on a complaint from People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), India, AWBI said that the Supreme Court judgement of May 7, 2014, banning all bull races in the country was still in force. AWBI had inspected three Kambala events in 2014-15, resulting in filing of 65 non-cognisable offence complaints and one First Information Report at a local police station. The inspection reports explained the apparent violations of the specific conditions set by the Karnataka High Court under which it allowed Kambala, the letter said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Kambala events are inherently cruel and are no different from bull races and jallikattu, which are banned by the Supreme Court in the entire country,” it said.However, district administrations of Udupi and DK have decided to allow the events under strict supervision of police and revenue officials with video recording to detect ill treatment of animals, like it was done last year.Kambala season in the coastal region begins in November and lasts till March. Five events have already been held this year starting with Surya Chandra Kambala at Bangadi in DK on November 21.

Juvenile convict released: We will continue our fight, say Nirbhaya’s parents

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Nirbhaya’s mother Asha Devi said notwithstanding the release of the juvenile convict on Sunday, she and her husband Badri Singh will continue their fight to ensure death penalty for rest of the four rapists who are currently lodged in Tihar jail.
File Photo
PTI
“We will take our battle for justice across India to awaken governments and law makers,” said a heartbroken Asha Devi, mother of the December 16 gangrape victim, after Supreme Court on Monday rejected a plea against release of the juvenile convict in the case.Devi said notwithstanding the release of the juvenile convict on Sunday, she and her husband Badri Singh will continue their fight to ensure death penalty for rest of the four rapists who are currently lodged in Tihar jail.”Despite our repeated pleas and demands for not setting the juvenile free, he has been released. We are dejected, shattered. But we will not stop and continue our fight to ensure that the other four rapists are hanged. We met with disappointment at every door, we are heart broken, but not crushed,” Devi told PTI.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court rejected the plea by Delhi Commission for Women chief Swati Maliwal against release of the juvenile offender. Devi said both she and Singh had felt that the plea would be rejected and that their sufferings were being used by others to hog the limelight.”Supreme Court’s verdict was what we had expected. How many more rapes, how many more murders will have to take place for the government to change laws? Nothing in India has changed since December 16, 2012. All promises and statements made by our leaders and ministers have turned out to be shallow. Our suffering gives them their moment in limelight,” she said.The parents of the victim along with hundreds of youths and activists gathered at Jantar Mantar for the third consecutive day demanding death penalty for the convicts of the gangrape case.

Nirbhaya Case: Centre says Juvenile Justice Amendment Law is ‘high priority’

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‘On behalf of the Central Government, we were specifically asked as to what our stand is. Keeping in mind the interest of the society and the issue of juvenile himself, we submitted that we are in favour of purposive interpretation of the law in such a fashion that it could be adopted to ensure that the society is not endangered also to assure the safety of the juvenile,’ she added.

Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Pinky Anand, who appeared for the Centre in the hearing of the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) plea, on Monday said that Juvenile Justice Amendment Law is a high priority item for the ruling dispensation at the Centre. ‘The arguments put by the petitioner, DCW, were that the law should be interpreted in a fashion which should be in favour of society to say this that until the reform process is completed, till then the juvenile should not walk free in society because it is a danger to society as well as a danger to the juvenile himself,’ Anand told ANI.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>’On behalf of the Central Government, we were specifically asked as to what our stand is. Keeping in mind the interest of the society and the issue of juvenile himself, we submitted that we are in favour of purposive interpretation of the law in such a fashion that it could be adopted to ensure that the society is not endangered also to assure the safety of the juvenile,’ she added.Anand further asserted that on behalf of the Central Government they urged that the Juvenile Justice Amendment Law is before the Rajya Sabha and the attempt was to go through it as quickly as possible. It is a high priority item for the government. It is extremely important that this act should go through as quickly as possible.The apex court earlier on Monday dismissed the petition of DCW Chairperson Swati Maliwal against the release of the juvenile offender in the December 16 gang rape case, saying ‘there has to be a clear legislative sanction’ in this regard. Disappointed with Supreme Court’s decision, Nirbhaya’s parents on Monday said that the women of this country will never get justice.Rejecting the DCW’s petition, the apex court earlier said that under existing law detention cannot go beyond three years. The parents of the victim protested in the national capital yesterday. Hundreds of sympathisers joined them at Rajpath near India Gate to show solidarity. The victim’s mother had said that she wanted justice for her daughter and said steps should have been taken long before to not set him free. Six persons, including the juvenile, had assaulted and raped Nirbhaya in a moving bus in south Delhi on December 16, 2012. The victim succumbed to her injuries in a Singapore hospital. Four of the accused were awarded death penalty by the trial court which was later confirmed by the Delhi High Court. Their appeals are pending before the Supreme Court. Another accused, Ram Singh, had allegedly committed suicide in Tihar Jail in 2013.

How many Nirbhayas are needed for laws to change in India: Jyoti Singh’s mother

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Weren’t hopeful that SC will give favourable verdict: Delhi gangrape victim’s father

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Rajya Sabha cheated country: DCW chief after SC ruling on juvenile’s release in Delhi gangrape case

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How many Nirbhayas needed for laws to change: Victim’s parents

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The victim’s mother Asha Devi said her fight against the system would continue.

PTI
With the Supreme Court rejecting the plea against release of the juvenile convict, the parents of the December 16 gangrape victim today said the courts have failed them and asked how many Nirbhayas would it take for the laws to change.The victim’s mother Asha Devi said her fight against the system would continue.”We were not very hopeful that the Supreme Court will give a favourable verdict but I want to ask how many Nirbhayas are needed for the laws to change in the country,” the victim’s father Badri Singh Pandey told reporters.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”The court is not bothered about the concerns of the public….This fight is not just about Nirbhaya but for every girl who is unsafe in a country which has such laws,” he added.The victim’s mother said she would fight till the law is changed.”I will not be defeated, the SC decision can’t stop me, I have to fight a long battle, I will fight till the bill is passed and law is changed.”The court is saying that the law does not permit further punishment for the juvenile but why is the case against other convicts still pending. Why have they not been hanged yet?,” she said.The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a plea of DCW Chairperson Swati Maliwal against the release of the juvenile offender, saying “there has to be a clear legislative sanction” in this.

What does the juvenile’s release say about punishment for rape? Has he served his dues to society?

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Delhi gangrape case: ‘Helpless’ SC rejects plea for stay on juvenile convict’s release

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Delhi Gangrape case: Supreme Court to hear DCW’s petition challenging juvenile convict’s release

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Delhi gangrape: Juvenile offender released as woman’s parents continue protest

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Nirbhaya case: Why acting so late to stop juvenile’s release, victims’s parents ask

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The reaction action Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) in a dramatic move approached the Supreme Court late Saturday night to stay the convict’s release.

Victim’s parents

PTI
Questioning the role of the Centre and Delhi government, the parents of December 16 gangrape victim on Sunday asked why they did not take action earlier to stop the imminent release of the juvenile convict. Opposing the release of the juvenile, the victim’s mother said, “Our fight is just on the issue that he (juvenile convict) must not come out. If he will come out then what is the point of hearing (by Supreme Court) or any other thing.” “All knew that he will be released so steps should have been taken during these three years,” she said adding, “I want justice and stay on his release.”<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> The reaction action Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) in a dramatic move approached the Supreme Court late last night to stay his release. In their order pronounced at 2 AM, a vacation bench refused to stay his release, scheduled for today, by giving an urgent hearing and posted the matter for hearing tomorrow. The victim’s father too expressed unhappiness with the Centre and Delhi government for showing “helplessness” on the issue of release of the juvenile “What hearing? But what can we do? Whatever the court is doing is right. Our government, whether Centre or state, they only listen to you when you protest and get lathicharged, else they don’t care. However, if proper hearing or verdict would have passed on this case, then we would not have seen this day,” he said. BJP leader Subramanian Swamy, who had filed a plea in the High Court against the juvenile’s release, pointed to the “provisions” which have to be applied before the juvenile convict is formally released. “According to rules of the Juvenile Justice Act, he can can be left out from the custody of the Juvenile Justice Board but he cannot be released as free person till management committee appointed for the purpose decides whether he is mentally sound, whether he has socially mainstreamed and that he has reformed.”

What now? Confusion prevails on juvenile’s release after DCW petition in Delhi gangrape case

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Nirbhaya case: AAP, DCW playing shameful politics on juvenile’s release, says Congress

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Expressing grief over the release of the juvenile, Congress leader Sharmistha Mukherjee said that it is really sad that the main accused will be released just because of his age.

Congress leader Sandeep Dikshit

Condemning the release of the juvenile involved in the December 16 gang rape case, the Congress on Sunday alleged that the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the Delhi Commission of Women (DCW) is doing shameful politics over the issue. “The DCW and Delhi government is doing politics in this matter. If they had a stand against the release they would have done it long back. It is very shameful that the Chief Minister and DCW chief is doing politics over this,” Congress leader Sandeep Dikshit told ANI in Delhi. Expressing grief over the release of the juvenile, Congress leader Sharmistha Mukherjee said that it is really sad that the main accused will be released just because of his age.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Related Read: Nirbhaya case: Everyone in India is against release of the convict, says DCW Chief Swati Maliwal She also said that despite Arvind Kejriwal making many public statements on lowering the age of juvenile to 15, when discussed in the House they (AAP) opposed it. “One thing I would like to point out which probably many people doesn”t know Kejriwal ji is continuously saying that juvenile age should be lowered to 15, he has made many public statement, but when this issue was discussed in house their MPs opposed it. So it really shows the hypocrisy of the AAP government. DCW stand was late, even if the law is amended unfortunately this boy is released now,” she added. The Supreme Court has decided to hear the plea of the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) against the release of the juvenile in the December 16 gang rape case on Monday, ruling out that there will be no stay on his release. DCW chief Swati Maliwal reached the Supreme Court last night after DCW decided to file a Special Leave Petition (SLP) in the apex court to stall the release of the convict. “I strongly feel that the Supreme Court has seen merit and that is why the Supreme Court was open at 2 o” clock in the night. This petition of Delhi Commission of Women against release of the juvenile and rapist in Nirbhaya”s case has been accepted, and it has been listed as item number three on Monday. I am hopeful because the kind of matter we have, the Supreme Court will take cognizance and will rule in our favour,” DCW chief Swati Maliwal told ANI.The convict, who is now 20 years old and was known to be the most brutal of the attackers, has been taken to an undisclosed location from a correction home in North Delhi amid concerns that there was a threat to his life. He is scheduled to be released today. Earlier, the parents of the gang rape victim, along students and activists were detained by the police as they staged a protest against the release of the juvenile convict. The police action was condemned by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. In December 2012, the teenager was part of the six member gang that lured a 23-year-old trainee physiotherapist and her male friend onto a bus, where the girl was gruesomely raped and her companion brutally beaten. The girl subsequently succumbed to her injuries 13 days later in Singapore. The incident caused nationwide outrage and led to widespread outpouring of anger against the rapists, including the teenager.

69% of Delhi believes odd-even car formula cannot be implemented: Survey

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The survey provides a collective pulse of what the citizens of Delhi have to say about the odd-even rule and what are some of the other things that must be implemented before it is implemented to reduce pollution in Delhi.

Sixty nine percent of citizens in Delhi say the odd-even vehicle rule cannot be implemented effectively from January 1, 2016, while sixty one percent citizens believe the rule will result in an increase in the number of cars plying on the roads of the national capital. According to a survey carried out by LocalCircles, India’s leading citizen engagement platform, over 9,000 to 10,000 citizens responded to each one of the poll questions. The survey provides a collective pulse of what the citizens of Delhi have to say about the odd-even rule and what are some of the other things that must be implemented before it is implemented to reduce pollution in Delhi.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Among the other the key findings are that 74 percent of citizens support the ban on registration of new diesel cars in Delhi;78 percent support the ban on registration renewal of more than 10-year-old cars in Delhi and citizens are split even on implementing this rule in a limited area of Delhi on a pilot basis. More importantly, citizens believe that there are a number of things that can be done before the government must do before it implements odd-even rule. Here are the collective inputs from over 100,000 citizens of Delhi on the subject of immediate actions to reduce pollution: All diesel commercial vehicles older than 10 years must be banned in Delhi. Plying of such vehicles from outside the state has to be managed by Delhi Traffic Police by setting up proper checkpoints into entry into Delhi. This has to be done wisely to avoid congestion. Delhi Government should work with the Haryana Government to complete the under construction Kundli-Manesar-Palwal by pass on a priority basis. Most of the civil work on this by pass has been completed and it will divert a bulk of traffic whose final destination is not Delhi.Delhi government should work actively with UP government for completing Kundli -Ghaziabad Palwal high the work on which has not even started fully. This is an important by pass and if it is not completed then the Supreme Court’s decision on commercial vehicle diversion can also not be implemented fully. A practical suggestion is that petrol pumps should be instructed to check the PUC certificate before giving petrol/diesel. This used to be the norm, but is not followed by petrol pumps. Delhi Police should impound vehicles having dangerous level of pollution. Open burning of garbage, dry leaves, rubber, synthetic clothes etc. should be made a criminal offence with a fine of Rs. 5000. Any one booked thrice for same punishable act to be liable to imprisonment for 30 days or a fine of Rs. 50,000 or both Cleaning of roads with brooms should be stopped and mechanized cleaning should be deployed to prevent the dust from spreading in the air.Open trucks carrying construction material should be banned. They should be strictly asked to cover them so dust does not fly outside Construction sites should be ordered to cover themselves from all sides and heavy penalty should be imposed if not covered.Permanent rain guns/sprinklers should be installed to keep top cover of all landfill sites within NCR of Delhi moist to prevent dust from flying around. Mist nozzles/water sprinklers should be mandatorily fitted on top of commercial buildings to spray water for 15 to 30 minutes before sun rise to enable the particulate matter to become heavy and settle down. Bursting of Crackers/fireworks in private functions should be banned.

Shashi Tharoor’s move to amend Sec 377 shot down; Parliament shows disdain for gay rights

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‘Crime won, we lost’: Jyoti Singh Pandey’s parents upset with High Court verdict

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Delhi teenage rapist set to be freed

A legal challenge to stop the release of the teenage convict of the 2012 Delhi gang rape is unsuccessful.

Amartya Sen calls for re-look at SC verdict on Haryana panchayat polls

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UP government misled Supreme Court: High Court CJ

On Wednesday, the apex court had taken the unprecedented decision of unilaterally finalizing the name of Justice Yadav for the post after several of its severe nudges to the Akhilesh Yadav government to make the appointment failed.

The Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court Justice DY Chandrachud has put the proverbial spanner in the works in the appointment of Justice (retd.) Virendra Singh Yadav as the new UP Lokayukta.On Wednesday, the apex court had taken the unprecedented decision of unilaterally finalizing the name of Justice Yadav for the post after several of its severe nudges to the Akhilesh Yadav government to make the appointment failed.On Thursday, the High Court CJ shot off a letter to UP Governor Ram Naik and to the Chief Justice of India saying that the Supreme Court had been misled about the names being considered for this post. The CJ is part of the three-member selection panel for the Lokayukta’s appointment, besides leader of the Opposition and the UP CM.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The allegation puts the state government’s counsel Kapil Sibal in the dock as he was the one who after consulting the state government gave the five names to the bench headed by Justice Ranjan Gogoi. The bench named retired judge Virendra Singh as the new Lokayukta.Though a copy of the letter was not available, Governor House sources said Justice Yadav’s name had already been struck off the list of probables on Tuesday evening when a five-hour marathon meeting of the three-member selection committee failed to name a unanimous choice.The panel had met again on Wednesday morning, an hour before the apex court was to hear the related case. The Supreme Court had fixed Wednesday as the deadline for the UP government to name the new Lokayukta.Sources said that on Wednesday morning, the selection committee named Justice Mittal, a serving judge of the Allahabad High Court, as the unanimous choice for this post.How and why Justice Virendra Singh Yadav’s name was included in the list of probables at the last moment before the apex court remains a mystery. Sources said that the High Court CJ had vetoed Justice Yadav’s name as he was known to be close to the ruling Samajwadi Party (SP) leadership.The CJ’s letter, virtually voicing his opinion against the judge the apex court has named, casts doubts about whether the UP Governor would administer the oath of office to Justice Yadav. Chances of this happening seem rather bleak under the changed circumstances.

Ailing ’93 blasts convict dies in Nashik, family blames hospital, jail

Shariff Parkar was held guilty for his role of landing explosives which was used in the serial blasts across the city

In this recent photo, Sharif Parkar is seen along with his family members at JJ hospital. Parkar was shifted to Nashik Road prison on December 8 and to the civic hospital there on Thursday
Salman Ansari
dna
The efforts put in by the children of 1993 serial blasts convict Shariff Parkar to ensure that their ailing father’s life would be extended by a few more months, bore no fruit. Parkar died in Nashik civil hospital on Thursday. They allege that apathy of JJ hospital in Mumbai and jail authorities resulted in the death of the 83-year-old man, who was serving his sentence in Nashik Road prison in poor health. As per the Supreme Court direction, Parkar was asked to surrender before the sessions court in May 2013 and continue to serve the remaining part of his life sentence. Accordingly, he was lodged in Nashik prison. However, in November this year, Parker suffered a paralytic stroke and was shifted to JJ hospital for treatment. The man was also suffering from dementia. After treating him for 10 days, hospital authorities told his family to take him back to jail. However, the family approached Bombay High Court and filed a petition to direct the hospital not to discharge him. A stay order was slapped on his discharge and he remained in the hospital. On December 7, the authorities issued a medical certificate which said that the patient was on the path of recovery. Finally, on December 8, he was sent back to the jail. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Parker’s son Faizal said, “We were pleading the hospital not to discharge my father, but they didn’t pay any heed. They convinced the court through their false medical reports that he just needed physiotherapy.” Parkar was held guilty for his role of landing explosives which was used in the 1993 blasts.

With TN temple ruling, SC strikes fine balance between right to religion and social reform

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JD(U) MP KC Tyagi seeks action against Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali

The Uttarakhand government, he said, had found an Ayurvedic ‘son-bearing’ medicine sold by Baba Ramdev’s pharma company fake but no action was taken.

JD(U) MLA KC Tyagi

A demand for action against yoga guru Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali pharma company for selling products like noodles and pasta without the food regulator’s approval was made in the Rajya Sabha on Thursday.Raising the issue through a Zero Hour mention, KC Tyagi (JD-U) also raised questions over why no appeal was filed in the Supreme Court against the Bombay High Court order lifting restrictions on sale of popular noodles Maggi.Describing the two as the new “Dabangs”, he said no action has been taken despite FSSAI finding faults with their products. He alleged that Patanjali noodles and pasta are being sold without the approval of the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI).<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Uttarakhand government, he said, had found an Ayurvedic ‘son-bearing’ medicine sold by Baba Ramdev’s pharma company fake but no action was taken.”He (Baba Ramdev) poses as if he is very close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He openly claims that he has helped with ‘tan, man and dhan’ (physically, mentally and monetarily) in formation of the BJP government,” Tyagi alleged.Similarly, the verdict of Bombay High Court in the Maggi case was accepted. “Why was no appeal made to the Supreme Court,” the JD(U) leader said and remarked “daal mein kuchh kala hai” (there is something fishy).

State can’t decide on appointment of temple priests, says SC: Here’s the full text of the judgement

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Supreme Court bars registration of diesel SUVs, cars of 2000 cc above in Delhi

The bench was hearing the pleas of auto dealers and the Centre not to ban diesel vehicles as the same will affect the supply of essential commodities.

Taking a tough stand against rich people using luxury SUVs and ensuring that the common man should not suffer due to pollution, the Supreme Court on Wednesday banned registration of diesel vehicles of 2000 cc and above till March 31 next year in Delhi and National Capital Region (NCR). The bench was hearing the pleas of auto dealers and the Centre not to ban diesel vehicles as the same will affect the supply of essential commodities. Issuing a slew of measures to check the pollution level in the city, the apex court directed that commercial vehicles registered before 2005 will not be allowed to enter the city and the cabs, including Ola and Uber, will have to convert to CNG. The court set the March 31deadline for it.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Passing a detailed order, a bench headed by Chief Justice of India T S Thakur said, “It is noteworthy that diesel vehicles of 2000 cc and above and SUVs are generally used by more affluent sections of our society and because of the higher engine capacity are more prone to cause higher levels of pollution.”The court said, “A ban on registration of such vehicles will not, therefore, affect the common man or the average citizen in the city of Delhi. We accordingly, direct that registration of SUVs and private cars of the capacity of 2000 CC and above using diesel as fuel shall stand banned in the NCR up to 31st March, 2016.”It also ordered for the diversion of commercial vehicles which are not bound for Delhi, specially trucks, which pass through the national capital on way to other destinations after finding them the major source of vehicular emissions in the city.”No Vehicle which is not bound for Delhi will be allowed to enter from NH-8 which connects Jaipur to Delhi and NH-1 that connects the states of Punjab, Haryana and other northern states to Delhi… the largest number of vehicles that are entering Delhi are from these two entry points,” the court said. Additionally, the court also doubled the environment compensation charge (ECC) by saying the light duty vehicles will have to pay Rs 1,400 and three-axle vehicles Rs 2,600 as ECC for entering DelhiThis very court had on October 12 ordered the light duty vehicles to pay Rs 700 and three-axle vehicles Rs 1,300 for entering Delhi in addition to the toll tax from November 1 as ECC.Further the court directed the authorities, including the local bodies and institutions within the National Capital Region (NCR), to refrain from disposing of solid waste by burning such waste and to take steps for proper management in a scientific manner as per the norms and the relevant rules.Accepting the suggestions placed by senior advocate Harish Salve, who is assisting the court in this matter, the bench directed the Delhi government to take “immediate steps for repair of pavements and make pavements wherever the same are missing and also to take immediate steps for procurement of the requisite vacuum cleaning vehicles for use on Delhi roads expeditiously” and fixed the deadline of March 31, 2016.The bench was hearing various pleas including the 1984 PIL filed by environmentalist M C Mehta.

Belgaum hopes for speedy justice from Supreme Court

Many youngsters of these Marathi-speaking parts of Karnataka struggle to get legal docus for jobs in Maharashtra

It was an early New Year celebration for Belgaum resident Piyush Nandkumar Hawal (25) on Wednesday when he received news about the formation of a separate nodal ministry for the Belgaum dispute, as reported by dna on Tuesday. The ministry was formed under the leadership of public works department (PWD) minister Chandrakant Patil.Hawal wasn’t alone. The Marathi-speaking people of Belgaum, Bidar, Karwar and Gulberga districts of Karnataka were in a jovial mood and could be seen congratulating each other as the news gradually spread through social media.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”The news came as a pleasant surprise to us. This has been our demand for years and we had intensified our efforts three months ago,” said Hawal, who has been meeting Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Sena MLAs and MPs in Maharashtra and Delhi to consolidate their support for the Belgaum movement.Speaking to dna over the phone, president of Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti (MES), Vasantrao Patil, said, “This is the first positive step by the Maharashtra government in the last 60 years. We are hopeful. We look forward to speedy justice by the Supreme Court.” MES has been fighting for a merger of 865 villages of Karnataka with Maharashtra on linguistic grounds since 1956.The prime reason for celebrations is that the Marathi-speaking people of this disputed area need not make rounds of the chief minister’s office and general administration department (GAD) for small works. All works, related to border disputes, come under the purview of GAD, a portfolio that CM Devendra Fadnavis has kept with himself.Many youngsters and students of these Marathi-speaking parts of Karnataka often struggle to get caste verification and other citizenship documents, required for admission and jobs in Maharashtra, where quota is offered to Belgaum students.Former Belgaum mayor Maloji Ashtekar said, “The aspirants have to rush to Mumbai, 500km away, to meet the CM. And since the CM is the busiest person in the government, people have to make several rounds. With Chandrakant Patil as nodal minister, we can now expect much respite. Besides, going to Kolhapur (Patil’s hometown, nearly 100-120km from the disputed area) would be a lot easier and cheaper than going to Mumbai.”With Patil as the nodal minister, Belgaum also hopes for speedy justice. “In the last one year, Fadnavis didn’t meet lawyers fighting the state’s case in the Supreme Court even once. On the other hand, Karnakata CM Siddarmaiah held two meetings with his legal team. We hope that Patil spends some time on the case,” said Hawal. Fadnavis could not be reached for comments due to the ongoing session in Nagpur. ‘BJP-Sena stopped grants for Belgaum institutes’People complained that the BJP-Sena government stopped a grant of Rs5 crore for Belgaum, which was approved by the previous Congress-NCP government two years ago. “The fund allocated by Ajit Pawar, the then finance minister, was for institutions working for the Marathi language and Marathi-medium schools in this area. The Fadnavis government must restore the same,” said Vasantrao Patil.

Appointing priests according to temple tradition is not against Constitution, rules SC

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SC order too little, too late, Delhi needs a permanent ban on diesel vehicles: Experts

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Understaffed and facing equipment shortage: Why PM Modi needs to rescue the Indian Navy

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Yes, Delhi has a pollution problem, but the solutions do not make any sense

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Supreme Court appoints Justice Virendra Singh as Uttar Pradesh Lokayukta

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Trouble not over yet for Maggi? SC directs testing of noodle samples by Mysuru lab

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Supreme Court steps in to clean Delhi’s air, bans new diesel SUV registration, restricts truck entry

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Supreme Court hints at banning diesel-run SUV in Delhi

A bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) TS Thakur slammed the car dealers who argued against the National Green Tribunal order banning registration of diesel cars.

Around 23% of cars registered in Delhi are run on diesel

Observing that the rich can’t move around the capital city in SUVs polluting the environment, the Supreme Court on Tuesday said it would ban registration of diesel-run SUVs, cars with engine capacity of more than 2000 cc and commercial vehicles for three to four months and double the green cess levied on trucks entering Delhi.Further indicating that only CNG cabs may be allowed to ply on city roads and the ban on burning of the municipal waste may be enforced strictly, besides introduction of Euro-IV emission norms, the court also agreed to ban the entry of trucks registered before 2005 in the national capital region and increase the green tax for trucks entering the capital.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) TS Thakur slammed the car dealers who argued against the National Green Tribunal order banning registration of diesel cars.”People’s life is at stake and you are interested in selling cars,” the court said.After hearing the Delhi air pollution issue for about three hours, the bench said the detailed order will be passed on Wednesday.The court had on October 12 ordered that light duty vehicles would have to pay Rs 700 and three-axle vehicles Rs 1,300 to enter Delhi in addition to the toll tax from November 1 as ‘environment compensation charge’ (ECC) in a bid to check high pollution levels in the city.Now, the light duty vehicles may have to pay Rs 1,400 and three-axle vehicles Rs 2,600 as ECC for entering Delhi.”Why don’t you people take credit for cleaning Delhi air? You could enumerate the steps to be taken and why you are asking the court to do it,” the bench said and asked the counsel representing Centre and the Delhi government to come out with comprehensive long and short term plans to tackle the menace of air pollution.The court said that as an interim measure for three-four months, it may ban registration of SUVs, high-end cars having engine capacity of over 2000 cc, besides banning entry of commercial vehicles, registered prior to 2005, in Delhi.The bench was hearing various pleas including the 1984 PIL filed by environmentalist M C Mehta.Last week, the green tribunal had directed that no new diesel vehicles will be registered in Delhi. The tribunal has also said that central and state government must stop buying diesel cars in Delhi.On the issue of the Delhi government’s plan to allow cars with odd and even registration numbers on alternate days from January 1 to check pollution, the court said, “We are not sure if it would help. You can implement it if it is going to help. We haven’t stopped you.”Around 23 per cent of the cars registered in Delhi are diesel. Diesel cars can legally emit 7.5 times more particulate matter than the petrol versions and produce more toxic nitrogen dioxide. Diesel emissions are also cancer causing, says the World Health Organisation.

New Delhi: 794 driving licences seized by police for traffic violations

Five driving licences were seized for drunken driving.
Representational Image

As many as 794 driving licences were seized by the police on Tuesday for violations of traffic rules in the national capital on the first day of implementation of directions of Supreme Court’s committee on road safety.”The maximum number of driving licences were seized for red light jumping and over-speeding. Till 5 pm a total of 794 driving licences were seized,” said Muktesh Chander, Special Commissioner of Police (Traffic). The 794 drivers whose licences were seized will not be able to drive any motor vehicle for at least a period of next three months, he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”The number of driving licences seized for red light jumping were 368, over-speeding 287, using mobile while driving 66, and carrying passengers in goods vehicles 57.”Five driving licences were seized for drunken driving. The Traffic cops also impounded 43 vehicles for various violations, said the officer.The Operation Seizure by Delhi Traffic Police started at C Hexagon on Kasturba Gandhi Marg crossing at 10 am with Chander supervising the exercise.A three member committee chaired by Justice KS Radhakrishnan had directed all the states and Union Territories in the country to implement its directions on road safety and submit their reports within three months from September 1, 2015.

Doing ‘our best’, will appoint new Lokayukta soon: UP after SC cracks whip on state govt

The apex court on Monday rapped the UP government for not appointing Lokayukta despite its directions and ordered compliance by December 16, saying it seemed that appointing authorities have their “own agenda”.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
The Uttar Pradesh government on Monday said it was doing “its best” to appoint a new Lokayukta as soon as possible, hours after Supreme Court cracked the whip on the state government for not appointing the anti-corruption ombudsman even after its earlier directions. Senior government officials on Monday went into a huddle in Lucknow after the apex court’s direction to the UP government to appoint a new Lokayukta within two days.”The state government is doing all its best to appoint a new Lokayukta as early as possible,” an official spokesman told PTI. They also said that senior officials were going through today’s order.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The apex court on Monday rapped the UP government for not appointing Lokayukta despite its directions and ordered compliance by December 16, saying it seemed that appointing authorities have their “own agenda”.”Why do you not appoint the Lokayukta? Why has our order not been complied with? Why can’t the Chief Minister, the Governor and the Chief Justice (of the High Court) sort this out?,” the bench comprising Justices Ranjan Gogoi and N V Ramana said.”We don’t mince words. It seems, each one of you have your own agenda… you make the appointment by Wednesday,” it said while fixing the petitions on the issue for hearing on December 16.A tug of war is being witnessed between the state government and Governor Ram Naik for the last several months over the appointment of a new anti-corruption ombudsman after justice (retd) N K Mehrotra.In August this year, the Governor had returned a file recommending Justice (retd) Raveendra Singh’s name to Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav for the third time.A Raj Bhawan communique had said the Governor returned the file asking the state government to follow proper procedure for the appointment. It had said that Leader of the Opposition Swami Parsad Maurya wrote to the Governor informing him that the three members of the selection committee — the Chief Minister, Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court and Leader of the Opposition in the state Assembly — never met to decide the name of the Lokayukta.The state government officially recommended Singh’s name on August 5. The file has since gone back and forth thrice. Naik has made it clear he will not give his assent until the name is cleared in a meeting of the selection committee. He has also recommended that the selection committee first consider a panel of names rather than directly take an opinion on just one name.The Supreme Court had issued notice to the state government on December 4, asking why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against it for non-compliance of its order to appoint a new Lokayukta in the state. A bench comprising justices Ranjan Gogoi and NV Ramana had sought response from the state on a fresh contempt petition alleging that despite apex court’s orders to find a suitable replacement of current Lukayukta, no appointment has been made so far.Amid the tug-of-war between UP Rajbhawan and the state government, Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav had met Governor Ram Naik on December 9. The Governor is believed to have told the chief minister to find out a way with regard to appointment of Lokayukta after discussing the issue with Chief Justice of Allahabad High Court DY Chandrachud. The Governor does not appear to be in favour of referring the Lokayukta issue for presidential consideration as it will only prolong the matter.Naik has returned the file concerning the appointment of a new Lokayukta to the state government a number of times, each time asking the chief minister to follow the proper procedure for selecting the ombudsman. The process to select the new Lokayukta ran into rough weather after the Chief Justice had expressed his reservations against the government’s nominee Justice (retd) Ravindra Singh Yadav.The state government and the Governor are also not on the same page on Yadav’s nomination and the file recommending his name has moved back and forth between Rajbhawan and the state government. The UP Assembly has passed the Uttar Pradesh Lokayukta and Up-Lokayukta (Amendment) Bill, 2015, to amend Lokayukta Act dropping Allahabad High Court Chief Justice from the selection committee.The bill proposed that the committee be made a four-member body comprising the CM, Leader of the Opposition, Speaker and a retired judge who would be selected in consultation with the CM and Speaker. The amendment was passed after the Governor refused to accept the appointment on the grounds that a proper meeting of the selection committee was not held and also the Allahabad HC Chief Justice had expressed reservations in view of Singh’s proximity to the ruling Samajwadi Party. The bill is still awaiting the Governor’s nod.On April 24, last year, the court had upheld the constitutional validity of amendment in UP Lokayukta Act for fixing eight-year tenure for the anti-corruption ombudsman. It had also directed the state government to take steps for selecting new incumbent within six months. The apex court, in July this year, had taken note of a contempt petition alleging non-compliance of its on April 24, 2014 order and directed the state to do the needful within 30 days.Justice Mehrotra was appointed as Lokayukta on March 16, 2006 for six years. Later, the government granted him a two-year extension by amending the Act under which the tenure was extended to eight years or till a successor took over. While upholding the constitutional validity of the amendment to the UP Lokayukta Act, the court had directed the state government to take steps to select a new ombudsman within six months.

Doing our best, will appoint Lokayukta as soon as possible: UP govt after SC rap

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Supreme Court pulls up Uttar Pradesh for not appointing Lokayukta

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Kolkata: LGBT community takes part in Pride walk

Holding colourful banners and placards, the transgender community hit the streets of Kolkata by dancing and singing

LGBT community people participate in Pride walk 2015 in Kolkata on Sunday.

The lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in Kolkata on Sunday took part in the colourful Rainbow Pride Walk 2015 protesting against discrimination with the theme of the walk being ‘Walking with Love and Solidarity’. “Primarily, the LGBT community in India is criminalised and socially stigmatised. And we are also very strategically invisibilized. So, first thing is to create a visibility and what we could be a better way than hitting the streets to create a visibility that too in a very colourful, positive way. We have been doing this since long,” Anish Roy Choudhury a regular participant of the walk told ANI.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Image courtesy PTIHolding colourful banners and placards, the transgender community hit the streets of Kolkata by dancing and singing. In 2009, the Delhi High Court ruled that Section 377 violated constitutional guarantees for equality, privacy and freedom of expression, ending the ban on same-sex relationships and sparking a new era in openness about homosexuality. But the decision was challenged by religious groups, and the Supreme Court threw out that decision four years later saying that only Parliament could change Section 377.

Parliamentary panel slams judicial activism, Supreme Court monitoring of probes

The remarks assume significance as probes in most of multi-crore corruption cases like 2G spectrum allocation, coal blocks allocation and Vyapam scams are being monitored by the Supreme Court.

Supreme Court

A parliamentary committee has criticised judicial activism of Supreme and higher courts by overseeing investigation and passing interim directions to CBI saying it may appear to be a colourable exercise of power by them.The committee also noted that various high courts and Supreme Court are frequently issuing directions to CBI to handle cases relating to Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 as also of “Public Order”.The superior courts are even directing CBI in a number of cases to report day-to-day progress in a sealed cover bypassing Sections 172 and 173 of the Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 and performing functions envisaged under the criminal justice system of the country for the lowest rung of criminal court, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice said in its report.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Judicial activism of higher judiciary by taking pains of overseeing an investigation and passing interim directions to CBI and even pre-empting the rights and remedies available to affected persons under criminal justice system.”It may, therefore, appear to affected persons as a pre- emptive and colourable exercise of power by the superior courts,” it said.The remarks assume significance as probes in most of multi-crore corruption cases like 2G spectrum allocation, coal blocks allocation and Vyapam scams are being monitored by the Supreme Court.

Here’s why 1 lakh Muslims are demanding death penalty for Kamlesh Tiwari

Kamlesh Tiwari made an inflammatory statement reportedly after Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan said that RSS leaders are homosexuals and that is why they don’t get married.

All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) supporters taking out a protest rally against Hindu Mahasabha leader Kamlesh Tiwari over his remarks against Prophet Muhammad in New Delhi

PTI
Self-proclaimed Hindu Mahasabha activist Kamlesh Tiwari is in trouble for making derogatory remarks against Muslims and Prophet Mohammed. Angry about his remarks, one lakh Muslims gathered in Muzaffarnagar to demand death penalty for Tiwari.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>On December 3, Kamlesh Tiwari, in a press note issued by him, claimed that Prophet Mohammed was the first homosexual. His statement reportedly came after Samajwadi Party minister Azam Khan had said that RSS leaders are homosexuals and this is why they don’t get married.Azam Khan’s remarks had come after Arun Jaitley had spoken up against Section 377 and said that the Supreme Court judgement on gay sex should be reconsidered. Arun Jaitley had said: “Supreme Court’s 2014 verdict banning gay sex is not in accordance with evolving legal jurisprudence and court needs to reconsider it.”Tiwari had been arrested in Lucknow the same day, and he was disowned by the Hindu Mahasabha who claimed that he wasn’t part of the outfit. The group said that the BJP and RSS had made up the fact to tarnish their image.According to a report, Samajwadi Party’s media convener Javed Ansari said that the protestors had two demands:Death penalty for Kamlesh Tiwari which should exist for anyone who insults the Prophet
Stricter laws against religious leaders who make hate speeches
On the other hand, Shia cleric Maulana Kalbe Jawwad has demanded capital punishment against Azam Khan for his statements. The Indian Express quoted him as saying: “All this happened due to conspiracy of Hindu Mahasabha and the minister (Azam) so that Muslims and Hindus continue fighting and votes are divided… This Muslim minister is tarnishing the image of the government. After his controversial statement, Tiwari gathered courage to issue derogatory statement against Prophet Muhammad.”

Don’t register new diesel vehicles in capital: NGT tells Delhi govt

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Friday ordered the Delhi government to not register any new diesel vehicle from now on. The order, probably the first such in India, came from a bench headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar on a petition by Vardhaman Kaushik.The bench specifically asked the Delhi and Union governments to not buy diesel vehicles. “We direct the government to take a conscientious decision with regard to not buying diesel vehicles, whether by the central or the state government. “We direct all public authorities, corporations, DDA, police and other public departments to prepare an action plan for phasing out diesel vehicles, particularly trucks being used by these bodies,” the bench said. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Tribunal then told the Delhi government and the Centre: be ready with your action plans by January 6. Earlier this year, the NGT had passed an order for condemning 10-year-old diesel vehicles and 15-year old petrol vehicles. In its eight-page order on Friday, the bench said: “As an interim measure, till the next date of posting, subject to hearing all concerned parties, we direct that diesel vehicles of more than 10 years, as already directed, as well as new diesel vehicles would not be registered in NCT, Delhi.” This order, it said, has to be implemented with its earlier ones such as prohibition on burning of waste and dumping of construction waste on roads. The entire government machinery should clamp down on such activities, it said.That’s more green sheen in Delhi.The odd and even of AAP planWhat is even to the Chief Justice of India looks odd to the NGT. The NGT bench on Friday questioned the Delhi government’s odd-even traffic plan. The Tribunal said it has doubts about the efficacy and success of the plan. Only a few days ago, Supreme Court Chief Justice TS Thakur favoured the plan and advised fellow-judges to opt for a car-pool system. Have green belt around schoolsWhile addressing the hazard of toxic air on school children, the NGT said: “In relation to taking adequate measures for preventing air pollution in schools, particularly government and corporation schools, NCT Delhi is directed to submit a proposal for creating green belt, by covering the ground with grass and installing air filters in schools.”

‘Lack of professionalism’ by arbitrators bringing bad name to the country: CJI Thakur

The CJI also said that the overburdened judiciary is supportive of the alternate dispute resolution mechanism of arbitration in view of the huge pendency of cases.

TS Thakur

Suggesting that the legal format of arbitration process must undergo a change, Chief Justice of India TS Thakur on Friday said “lack of professionalism” by arbitrators was bringing a bad name to the country.”Lack of professionalism on the part of arbitrators and lawyers is bringing a bad name to the country,” he said, adding, “I think that the legal format (of arbitration process) has to undergo a change.”The CJI also said that the overburdened judiciary is supportive of the alternate dispute resolution mechanism of arbitration in view of the huge pendency of cases.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We would welcome a system like arbitration. We are supportive of arbitration as it relieves us of the burden of pendency of cases. Entire judiciary, from top to bottom, is supportive of arbitration process,” he said. “What is heartening is that the government is conscious of this requirement. They have brought in an ordinance and that shows that they want to make changes, they want to make amends, things are moving and the fact that they are making some amendments in the ordinance is very heartening,” Justice Thakur said.Under the amendments proposed by the government to the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996, an arbitrator will have to settle a case within 18 months. However, after the completion of 12 months, certain restrictions will be put in place to ensure that arbitration case does not linger on. In his inaugural address at the two-day international conference here on ‘Arbitration in the era of globalisation’, Justice Thakur spoke about the challenges faced in the Indian arbitration process.He also said, “For arbitration to flourish in India, you ought to make yourself professional.” Stressing on the need to have a smooth arbitration process in India, he said that the judiciary welcomes a system that is alternative to the system of adjudication. “We would welcome a system where people would go for resolution of a domestic problem. Like arbitration where people can choose their judges and agreeing to solve their dispute with the help of those judges. We have absolutely no difficulty.”Actually we welcome these measures where parties agree for an effort to arbitration which consume less time and money…, Justice Thakur said. The CJI also said that in India, where the population is over 1.25 billion, there are around 15,000 judges in the lower judiciary while 800 judges are there at the High Courts followed by 30 judges in the Supreme Court besides the Chief Justice. “We have a large number of cases pending all over the country. Judiciary processes five crore cases a year and out of this, the judiciary disposes around two crore cases per year despite the infrastructure problems and vacancies of judges,” he said, adding that pendency of cases is a great concern.Justice Thakur said arbitration is even mythologically known to India and to arbitrate and mediate is a divine function. “If you fail, it does not make a difference as even Lord Krishna had failed in his attempt,” he said while referring to the epic Mahabharata where Lord Krishna had tried to mediate between the Pandavas and Kauravas to prevent the war.

Will study NGT order on diesel-run vehicles: Delhi government

Earlier in the day, the NGT directed that diesel-run vehicles will not be registered in Delhi with immediate effect and asked the central and state government departments not to purchase such vehicles. Under interim measures, there will be no renewal of registration of diesel vehicles which are more than 10-year-old.

Delhi government today said that it will study the National Green Tribunal’s order directing that diesel-run vehicles will not be registered in the city with immediate effect.According to transport department, around 400 new diesel- run vehicles are registered in the national capital. There are around 5.5 lakh diesel vehicles plying in the national capital. In total, 88.27 lakh vehicles are registered in Delhi. “Similar matter pertaining to vehicles is pending in Supreme Court. We will study the NGT’s order and then, make a statement,” a Delhi government spokesperson said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Delhi Transport Minister Gopal Rai said that government will consider the green court’s order. More than 26.29 lakh cars and jeeps were added to the national capital in the period between April 2013 and March 2014. During last year, 27.90 lakh cars and jeeps were added in the capital, the report said.Earlier in the day, the NGT directed that diesel-run vehicles will not be registered in Delhi with immediate effect and asked the central and state government departments not to purchase such vehicles. Under interim measures, there will be no renewal of registration of diesel vehicles which are more than 10-year-old.The court also directed all the public authorities, corporations, DDA, police and other public department to prepare and submit an action plan for phasing out diesel vehicles, particularly the trucks being used by all these bodies by January 6, the next date of hearing.

HC dismisses petition against Mulayam Singh Yadav for rape remark

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SC seeks response from Nestle India, Maharashtra on FSSAI plea against lifting of Maggi ban

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Supreme Court upholds law fixing education qualification for Haryana panchayat poll

The court’s verdict, which will have wider impact on the elections, held the amendment and the criteria were “neither irrational nor illegal.”

Observing that education is must for both men and women in a healthy society, the Supreme Court on Thursday upheld Haryana government’s amendment to the Panchayati Raj Act mandating educational qualifications and other eligibility criteria for candidate aspire to contest the rural local body elections.The court’s verdict, which will have wider impact on the elections, held the amendment and the criteria were “neither irrational nor illegal.”The court also upheld the government’s amendment to the law setting other criteria that a person can’t contest election for Panchayats if charges have been framed against him for the criminal offence attracting imprisonment of not less than ten years, who fail to pay arrears of a cooperative society or a cooperative bank or that of electricity bill and don’t have a functional toilet at their residence.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”No one can dispute that education is must for both men and women as both together make a healthy and educated society. It is an essential tool for a bright future and plays an important role in the development and progress of the country,” a bench headed by Justice J Chelameswar said.Upholding the amended Panchayati Raj Act in Haryana, the court said that the “object sought to be achieved cannot be said to be irrational or illegal or unconnected with the scheme and purpose of empowering the rural people through local self-government.”The bench said it is only education which gives a human being the power to discriminate between right and wrong, good and therefore, prescription of an educational qualification is not irrelevant for better administration of the panchayats.Holding that it was the legislative wisdom to decide as to what should be the minimum qualifications, Justice Sapre in a concurring but separate judgment said, “No one can dispute that education is must for both men and women as both together make a healthy and educated society. It is an essential tool for a bright future and plays an important role in the development and progress of the country.”The court dismissed the plea challenging the validity of the amendment to Panchayati Raj law that has set some criterial for candidates.Initially an ordinance prescribing the eligibility criteria was issued on August 14, 2015. Haryana assembly passed the amendments on September 7, 2015 and very next day the State Election Commission announced the elections.Addressing the challenge to the validity of the provision of educational qualification as it would result in a disqualification of a large number of people (more than 50%) from contesting Panchayat election, the court said, “every person who is entitled to vote is not automatically entitled to contest for every office under the Constitution.” Criminal charges The court also upheld the government’s amendment to the law setting other criteria that a person can’t contest election for Panchayats if charges have been framed against him for the criminal offence attracting imprisonment of not less than ten years, who fail to pay arrears of a cooperative society or a cooperative bank or that of electricity bill and don’t have a functional toilet at their residence.

Jessica Lall case: Delhi HC grants bail for Manu Sharma so he can write law exam

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Haryana: SC upholds minimum qualification criterion for Panchayat polls; EC starts preparation for elections

The apex court on Thursday upheld the validity of recent amendments in a Haryana law which fixes various criteria including minimum educational qualification for candidates contesting panchayat polls.

Supreme Court

The State Election Commission on Thursday said it will soon set in motion the process for conduct of panchayat polls after the Supreme Court upheld a new in Haryana mandating minimum educational qualifications as a prerequisite for the contestants.”We will send a proposal to the state government immediately after we get the operative part of the Supreme Court judgement. “After getting the nod from the government, the process of holding the (panchayat) polls, which had been put on hold in view of the apex court hearing the petition, will be set in motion once again,” Haryana State Election Commissioner Rajeev Sharma said over telephone. The Model Code of Conduct was put on hold from September 24 in view of the Supreme Court hearing the petition pertaining to the validity of the educational qualifications for the candidates contesting panchayat polls in Haryana.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The apex court on Thursday upheld the validity of recent amendments in a Haryana law which fixes various criteria including minimum educational qualification for candidates contesting panchayat polls. The petition had challenged validity of Haryana’s Panchayati Raj (amendment) Act 2015 which fixes matriculation as essential qualification for general candidates contesting panchayat polls. As the matter was pending before the Supreme Court, the SEC had decided to put on hold all the activities in pursuant to Commission’s notification dated September 8 and all other notifications/orders issued subsequently, Sharma said.The Commission had on September 8 issued the programme for the conduct of elections to Panchayati Raj institutions in the state. According to the programme, the panchayat polls were to be conducted in three phases – October 4, 11 and 18. Meanwhile, ruling BJP in the state has hailed the Supreme Court verdict.”The Supreme Court verdict on the panchayat poll issue has proved that Haryana Government’s thought and direction of work are correct,” State Health Minister Anil Vij tweeted. When asked to comment on the judgement, senior Congress leader and former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda said, “I am yet to go through the verdict. I don’t know on what ground the writ petition has been dismissed.” Hooda had earlier said that before fixing minimum educational criteria for contestants of panchayat polls, the BJP government in the state and at the Centre should do the same for MPs and MLAs. State’s principal opposition party INLD, which had slammed the Khattar government alleging that it showed haste in fixing the education criteria, today said their views remain the same.”Everyone has to abide by the Supreme Court ruling, but our reservation was with the government. The BJP government should not have shown hurry in fixing minimum qualification criteria as it will debar nearly 70 per cent candidates from contesting. “The government should have first sought people’s view on this before moving ahead,” party’s state unit president Ashok Arora said.However, 33-year-old Sunil Jaglan, the man behind ‘Selfie with Daughter’ campaign and the Sarpanch of village Bibipur, termed it as a “historic” verdict. “It’s a historic verdict. Having educated elected representatives at the grassroot level of our system means that communication gap between government and public will be bridged. “Educated sarpanches will not be at the mercy of bureaucrats and effectively implement government schemes,” Jaglan said.

Supreme Court calls for multi-pronged approach to tackle pollution in Delhi

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Minimum educational qualification mandatory for Panchayat polls: Supreme Court

The petition had challenged validity of Haryana’s Panchayati Raj (amendment) Act 2015 which fixes matriculation as essential qualification for general candidates contesting panchayat polls, while the qualification for women (general) and Scheduled Caste candidates has been fixed at Class VIII.

Supreme Court
File Photo

The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the validity of recent amendments in a Haryana law which fixes various criteria including minimum educational qualification for candidates contesting panchayat polls.”The writ petition is dismissed,” a bench comprising justices J Chelameswar and A M Sapre said. The petition had challenged validity of Haryana’s Panchayati Raj (amendment) Act 2015 which fixes matriculation as essential qualification for general candidates contesting panchayat polls, while the qualification for women (general) and Scheduled Caste candidates has been fixed at Class VIII.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>However, in case of a woman candidate belonging to the Scheduled Caste category contesting election for the post of panch (panchayat head), the minimum qualification would be Class V.

Candidates for Haryana panchayat polls must have minimum education qualification, SC confirms

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National Herald case: Will Sonia Gandhi, Rahul appear before court today

Turning down the plea of Gandhis and five others for exemption from personal appearance before the trial court – where it is listed for Tuesday – on a complaint filed by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy, justice Sunil Gaur said the gravity of the allegations levelled against them has a ” fraudulent flavor” involving a national political party and “serious imputations smacking of criminality”, and needs to be properly looked into.

In a big blow to Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul Gandhi, the Delhi High Court on Monday rejected their pleas for quashing the summons issued by the trial court in the National Herald case, and made scathing observations on their “questionable conduct” regarding how they took control of the publication. Turning down the plea of Gandhis and five others for exemption from personal appearance before the trial court – where it is listed for Tuesday – on a complaint filed by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy, justice Sunil Gaur said the gravity of the allegations levelled against them has a ” fraudulent flavor” involving a national political party and “serious imputations smacking of criminality”, and needs to be properly looked into.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Congress said it will move the Supreme Court seeking a stay on the high court order. “How does it become a case of cheating, we fail to understand…which is the challenge which led to the stay of over one year,” asked Abhishek Manu Singhvi. Other than Gandhis, those accused in the case are Suman Dubey, Moti Lal Vohra, Oscar Fernandez, Sam Pitroda and Young India Ltd. The judge, in his 27-page order, said: “After having considered the entire case in its proper perspective, this court finds no hesitation to put it on record that the modus operandi adopted by petitioners in taking control of Associated Journals Ltd (AJL) via special purpose vehicle i.e. Young India Ltd (YIL), particularly when the main persons in Congress party, AJL and YIL are the same, evidences a criminal intent. Whether it is cheating, criminal misappropriation or criminal breach of trust is not required to be spelt out at this nascent stage.” “In any case, by no stretch of imagination, it can be said that no case for summoning petitioners as accused in the complaint in question is made out. Questionable conduct of petitioners needs to be properly examined,” the order said, rejecting Gandhis’ argument that there was no illegality in Young India Ltd. (YIL) taking over Associated Journals Ltd. (AJL), the publisher of the now-defunct National Herald newspaper, as per the Companies Act. On June 26, last year, the trial court had issued summons to the Congress leaders on Swamy’s complaint about “cheating” in the acquisition of Associated Journals Ltd. (AJL) by Young India Ltd. (YIL) – “a firm in which both Sonia and Rahul own 38% stake each”. Swamy had claimed that Sonia and Rahul, as majority shareholders of YIL, benefited from the acquisition of AJL. He alleged that AJL had received an interest-free loan of Rs 90.25 crore from the Congress and that the party transferred the debt to YIL for Rs 50 lakh. At the time, AJL, which had Congress leader Motilal Vora as its chairman, claimed it could not repay the loan and agreed to transfer the company and its assets to YIL. Narrating the facts of the case, the high court expressed its displeasure over the involvement of the Congress saying “considering the fact that AJL has sizeable assets of Rs 2,000 crore, it needs to be explained by the petitioners (accused persons) as to what was the need to assign the huge debt of Rs 90 crore when this debt could have been easily liquidated by AJL from its sizeable assets. Even writing off such a huge debt by the Congress party can legitimately attract allegations of cheating, fraud, etc…” Swamy files caveat in SCSubramanian Swamy on Monday filed a caveat in the Supreme Court to pre-empt any ex-parte order on appeals likely to be filed by Sonia Gandhi and Rahul in the National Herald case. “I have filed a caveat in the Supreme Court that in case they file any petition, it should not be heard and no order be passed without giving me an opportunity or without hearing me,” he said.

Include acid attack victims in disability list, Supreme Court tells states, UTs

Expressing anguish at the states’ failure to regulate the sale of acid and take action against the culprits, the SC ordered “stringent action against those supplying acid without authorisation”.

The Supreme Court (SC) on Monday directed all states and Union Territories (UTs) to compensate, rehabilitate and provide free treatment to acid attack victims according to its earlier guidelines and include their names in the “disability list.” Expressing anguish at the states’ failure to regulate the sale of acid and take action against the culprits, the SC ordered “stringent action against those supplying acid without authorisation”. Concerned authorities should be held responsible for the failure to check the distribution of acid, a bench of justices MY Eqbal and C Nagappan said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> It said that most states and UTs have failed to comply with the SC guidelines in the Laxmi vs the Union of India case of 2013. “These attacks have been rampant for the simple reason that there has been no proper implementation of regulations or control over the supply and distribution of acid,” the court said. The bench clarified that the court had not capped compensation at Rs 3 lakh for acid attack victims and that states can compensate more. The court recorded the affidavits by various states and said that only 17 have created a Victims Compensation Fund and some of them has not even operated it so far. The bench’s order came in the case of an acid attack victim from Bihar. The court asked the Bihar government to pay a compensation of Rs 10 lakh, besides providing her free treatment, including reconstruction surgery. A Bihar-based NGO, Parivartan Kendra, had sought the court’s direction on the rehabilitation of acid attack victims, alleging that private hospitals were not providing free treatment. Earlier, the court had ordered all private hospitals across the country to provide free treatment, medicines and expensive reconstruction surgeries, to such victims. It had asked all states and UTs to “take up the matter with private hospitals”.

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