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No provision to name laws after individuals: Centre

NEW DELHI: The revised anti-rape law, which is expected to be stringent and facilitate speedier justice, is unlikely to be named after the Delhi gang-rape victim as suggested by some quarters.

Home Ministry officials said the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) do not have provisions for naming any law after an individual.

“No law has been named after any person in India. Neither the IPC nor the CrPC provides for that. One has to see the case in national perspective. The issue has wide repercussions while registering offences. This girl has been a catalyst to the changes in the anti-rape law but naming is not an option,” an official of the Ministry said.

Besides others, Union Minister Shashi Tharoor had said on Tuesday the revised anti-rape legislation should be named after the victim if her parents do not have objections.

The Justice Verma Committee is reviewing criminal law to punish juvenile in sexual assault cases and considering whether the existing law should be amended or to bring a fresh one.

“The Women and Child Development Ministry is the nodal Ministry. They are also considering the need to plug loopholes in sexual assault law,” the official said.

Meanwhile, the Home Ministry inquiry into the controversy over allegations and counter-allegations by Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar on recording the gang-rape victim’s statement before her death has not been completed yet.

“We expect an early closure of the probe. But no time line can be put to the process,” the official said. — PTI





Naming anti-rape law after girl will be an honour: Family

BALLIA (UP): A day after Union Minister Shashi Tharoor favoured naming the revised anti-rape law after the Delhi gang-rape victim, her family members on Wednesday said they have no objection to it and the move would be an honour to the girl.

The family members of the 23-year-old girl said that "if her name is made public for this purpose, they have no objection to it".

Talking to the father and brother of the girl said that "if the government names the revised anti-rape law after her, they have no objection and it would be an honour to her".

Tharoor had yesterday favoured making public the identity of the gang-rape victim wondering what interest was served by keeping her name under wraps.

Tharoor, the Minister of State for Human Resources Development, had also said the revised anti-rape legislation should be named after the victim if her parents do not have any objection.

"Wondering what interest is served by continuing anonymity of #DelhGangRape victim. Why not name & honour her as a real person w/own identity?" he asked on micro-blogging site Twitter.

"Unless her parents object, she should be honoured & the revised anti-rape law named after her. She was a human being w/a name, not just a symbol," Tharoor, who is known for speaking his mind, said.

On reports of Telugu filmmaker Ramana Gaddam planning to make changes in his upcoming film to highlight the brutal gang rape, the girl's brother said before doing so he should meet them and give information about the storyline.

He said the director would have to clarify what he wants to portray in the movie.

Asked about the financial assistance of Rs 20 lakh announced by the Uttar Pradesh government and assistance of Rs 15 lakh and job announced by Delhi government, the brother said though announcements have been made, they are yet to receive the assistance.

However, the girl's father said he was satisfied with the announcements made by the government.

The family members termed as misleading reports in the media that the girl was about to get married.

On a question regarding police chargesheet in the case, the brother said they do not want to comment on the issue and only want justice. — PTI





SC upholds appointment of Gujarat Lokayukta

NEW DELHI: In a setback to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, the Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld the appointment of Justice (retd) R.A. Mehta as the Lokayukta of the state. An apex court Bench of Justice B.S. Chauhan and Justice F.M. Ibrahim Kalifulla said Governor Kamla Beniwal appointed Justice Mehta as the state's Lokayukta after due consultation with the Chief Justice of Gujarat High Court as provided under the statute.

Pronouncing the judgement, Justice Chauhan said: "The Governor has to act in consultation with Chief Justice of High Court which has been done in this case."

The court was hearing a petition by the Gujarat government challenging a state high court verdict upholding Justice Mehta's appointment.

On November 27, senior counsel K.K. Venugopal, appearing for the Gujarat government, told the court that Governor Beniwal refused to act on the aid and advice of the state's council of ministers and acted independently.

Describing the governor's action as an "extra-ordinary situation", Venugopal said Beniwal consulted the Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly but the Chief Minister and the council of ministers were sidelined.

The Gujarat government's petition had contended that Justice Mehta's appointment was "void, ab-initio as being ultra vires Section 3 of the Act (Gujarat Lokayukta Act, 1986) read with Article 163 of the Constitution." — IANS






India will bounce back against Pak: Tendulkar

MUSSOORIE: Sachin Tendulkar might have called time on his limited-overs career but he says his heart is still with the team and exuded confidence that India would bounce back in the ODI series against arch-rivals Pakistan.

“Even though I am not part of the team now, my heart is always with the team. I will support the team all the way. And I have no doubt that the team is going to bounce back in the series,” Tendulkar said during his first interaction with the media after his retirement from ODIs.

“The team needs good wishes and support from all of us. They need good feedback from everybody so that they can play good cricket,” he said, while also offering the countrymen good wishes in the new year.

“Now 2013 has set in and I would like to wish the people of this country happiness and good health,” he added.

Tendulkar, who has been holidaying here with his family, thanked fans for the support he got throughout his long career.

“It has been a fantastic journey for the last 23 years and I would like to thank everybody for their support. They have supported me in the ups and downs of my career. It means a lot to me. So, it has been a memorable journey,” he said.

Asked about his holidaying, Tendulkar said, “For the last 23 years, the cricket schedule has been very tight and I could get just a few occasions to spend time with the family. Here I was able to have long walk and appreciate how beautiful the country is and how fabulous the place is.”

“I have my privacy here and I thanked the media for this. I played badminton, table tennis, tennis ball cricket also and watched cricket on television,” he said when asked how he had spent his time during the holiday.

Tendulkar has been holidaying in this north Indian resort town with wife Anjali, son Arjun and daughter Sara since December 23 just after announcing his ODI retirement. — PTI





AI cancels Singapore flight, passengers stranded

Mumbai: As many as 260 passengers of a Singapore-bound Air India flight from Mumbai were stranded after the airline cancelled it citing non-availability of cockpit crew. The flight, which was scheduled to take-off at 0005 hrs today, is now expected to depart for its destination tonight, an Air India spokesperson said.

"The Mumbai-Singapore flight AI342 with 260 passengers on board was cancelled due to non-availability of commander.

The flight will now leave for Singapore at midnight today," the spokesperson said.

Air India has provided hotel and other facilities to the stranded passengers, the airline said, adding that some of the passengers have been booked on other flights.

The airline is facing acute shortage of pilots, particularly commanders, as a good number of them have quit the carrier for better prospects.

Late last month, Air India Mumbai-Riyadh flight was delayed by 20 hours, leading to chaos at the city airport. The airline had then attributed the inordinate delay to flight crew shortage. Back




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