|Friday, April 14, 2000,
Presidents France visit from
Failure to prove motive
doesnt weaken case
Shoot orders in Tripura
2700 cr loss from
Judicial custody for Vivek, Ketan
Dissidents write to Sonia against
STs can have two wives: HC
Asia catches Hollywoods
Jaya has 7,109 sarees: witness
Wage boards report not
to be delayed
PMs concern over attack on
Presidents France visit from April
NEW DELHI, April 13 The forthcoming six-day visit of the President, Mr K.R. Narayanan, to France from April 16 will not only consolidate the bilateral relationship but also pave the way for mutual cooperation in the vital area of information technology.
Briefing newspersons about the presidential visit to France, which has "emerged as one of Indias most important interlocutors in the international community, the Foreign Secretary, Mr Lalit Mansingh said Mr Narayanans visit would contribute to understanding of Indias strength in information technology (IT).
"I hope that in this sector we will make lot of progress", Mr Mansingh said, adding that the realisation of countrys prowess in the IT sector had been spreading in Europe.
The co-Chairman of the Indo-French forum, Mr Ram Krishna Hegde, who is accompanying Mr Narayanan on the visit, has already taken up the issue of bilateral cooperation in the IT sector, Mr Mansingh said. A bilateral agreement on investment protection is likely to be signed during Mr Narayanans stay in Paris, the Foreign Secretary said.
The bilateral cooperation has been growing with trade figures going up to $ 2 billion, he said, adding that the flow of investment from France had been to the tune of $ 1.2 billion.
However, the real potential of economic cooperation still remained untapped, Mr Mansingh said, adding that there were 542 joint collaborations between the two countries.
The strategic dialogue,
initiated between the two countries during Mr
Vajpayees visit to France in September, 1998, has,
apart from providing depth to the bilateral relationship,
also contributed to an understanding between India and
the European Union, the Foreign Secretary said, adding
that "this assumes additional importance in the
context of the increasing trend towards multipolarity in
Failure to prove motive doesnt weaken case
NEW DELHI, April 13 (PTI) In a significant judgement in a triple murder case, the Supreme Court has ruled that failure of the prosecution to prove the motive of the accused in committing a crime does not weaken a case.
Upholding the conviction of a person accused of murdering his father, mother and brother, a Bench comprising Mr Justice K.T. Thomas and Mr Justice Y.K. Sabharwal reversed an Allahabad High Court order acquitting the accused saying prosecution had failed to properly establish the motive behind the crime.
"We are unable to concur with the legal proposition adumbrated in the high court judgement that motive may not be very much material in cases depending on direct evidence whereas motive is material only when the case depends upon circumstantial evidence," the Bench said.
Writing the judgement for the Bench, Mr Justice Thomas said,: "There is no legal warrant for making such a hiatus in criminal cases as for the motive for committing the crime."
The case pertained to Babu Ram, who was convicted by the sessions court for murdering his father, mother and brother and was awarded death penalty.
Though the apex court reduced the sentence from capital punishment to life imprisonment, it observed, "In the realm of homicidal crimes such episodes rarely happen."
As it was a rare crime,
the task was heavy for the prosecution to carry the
conviction of the truth of the allegation against the
accused, the Bench said and added: "That perhaps may
be the factor which influenced the high court in giving
benefit of doubt to Babu Ram."
Shoot orders in Tripura
AGARTALA, April 13 (PTI) Curfew has been imposed and shoot-at-sight orders issued by West Tripura district administration as the situation in Jirania area worsened due to ethnic clashes since Monday, official sources said here today.
Curfew was imposed for 24 hours in the area since 10 p.m. last night, the sources said. The Assam Rifles staged a flag march in the area where 850 huts were torched in the clashes rendering 8,000 people homeless.
Fresh trouble started last night when a group of miscreants raided Das Para village. Some other groups set ablaze many other houses at adjacent Sadhupara, Shankar bazar and Ramdayalpar areas in retaliation, the police said.
Altogether 250 houses of 80 families were set afire in yesterdays clashes, the police said.
Security personnel, including the CRPF, Tripura State Rifles and the Assam Rifles rushed to the areas to bring the situation under control.
Twentyeight persons were rounded up, 12 under non-bailable preventive Acts including the National Security Acts (NSA), the police said. As many as 58 persons have been arrested in the last few days in this connection.
Mr K.T.D. Singh, DGP, told reporters that the duration of curfew may be increased.
The 8,000 people rendered homeless have taken shelter in 11 relief camps opened by the administration.
Clashes broke out on Monday when a tribal candidate of secondary examination was seriously wounded as the United Bengali Liberation Front (UBLF) rebels hurled bombs at a Jeep at Chakbasta village in Jirania.
The next day the police recovered body of a tribal from Kobjakhamar village, where houses had been gutted in the ethnic clashes.
The Tripura Chief
Minister, Mr Manik Sarkar, yesterday reviewed the
situation in the state with top officials and senior
ministers including, the Finance Minister, Mr Badal
Choudhury, the Tribal Welfare Minister, Mr Ghore Debbarma
and the Industries Minister, Mr Pabitra Kar.
2700 cr loss from holidays
MUMBAI, April 13 (UNI) The national exchequer would have to bear losses to the tune of Rs 2700 crore due to a spate of holidays this calendar year.
Mr Vijay Kalantri, President All India Association of Industries, said the government continues to follow the old regime of declaring holidays without considering the colossal loss to the national exchequer.
If conservatively estimated, every holiday brings in a loss of Rs 100 crore, besides a host of invisible and incidental losses, he said in a statement issued here yesterday.
For the entire year, there are as many as 99 holidays including Sundays and non-working Saturdays. The total loss to the exchequer for 27 declared holidays, excluding non-working Saturdays and Sundays, will be approximately Rs 2700 crore.
The worst-hit sections are daily wagers, taxi, auto and transport workers, port and dock labourers and restaurant workers, he said.
Mr Kalantri said, India cannot afford to have so many holidays and non-working days at a time when there was a highly competitive global order.
In advanced countries, work continues non-stop even during the night as a result of which productivity has peaked to phenomenal levels, he pointed out.
While in India, there is no practice of working at night though several suggestions have been made in this regard mainly to reduce congestion in highly populous metropolis like Mumbai.
The Finance Commission has recommended wage hikes for all sections of the government employees and even banks have announced a 12.5 per cent hike in wages for their employees, he said.
Mr Kalantri alleged the
wage increase has been declared without considering the
productivity of the workforce, taking into account only
holidays, admissible leaves like privilege leave, sick
leave and casual leave throughout the year.
Judicial custody for Vivek, Ketan
MUMBAI, April 13 (PTI) Vivek and Ketan Anand, sons of the late director-producer Chetan Anand, were today remanded in judicial custody till April 27 along with two others for their alleged involvement in the murder of actress, Priya Rajvansh.
Mala Choudhury, Priyas maid servant, and co-accused Ashok Chinaswamy were also remanded in judicial custody till then by the Metropolitan Magistrate, Mr V.A. Pokle.
Assistant public prosecutor Pradeep Rane, urged for the police custody of the accused on the ground that additional material had to be collected by the police to prove their involvement in the crime.
Defence lawyer Satish Maneshinde objected to the prosecution urging for police custody on the same grounds pleaded earlier.
Dissidents write to Sonia against Dikshit
NEW DELHI, April 13 (UNI) Dissidence against Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit today grew stronger with local Congress stalwarts writing to party President Sonia Gandhi to take action against her for acts of "indiscipline.
Seniormost party leader from Delhi Jagpravesh Chandra, former Union Minister Jagdish Tytler and former MPs Sajjan Kumar and Jai Prakash Aggarwal are signatories to the letter.
The leaders charged Ms Dikshit with "blatant defiance of the official party line that Bihar Chief Minister Rabri Devi should continue in office.
The Chief Minister on Tuesday denied having asked for Ms Rabri Devis resignation saying she was "quoted out of context. She alleged that there was a "deliberate attempt to spread misinformation.
"This is not the
first act of indiscipline Ms Dikshit has committed. She
had met Mr V.P. Singh at his residence and offered him a
bouquet and discussed policy matters regarding
resettlement of jhuggiwalas.
STs can have two wives: HC
NEW DELHI, April 13 (UNI) Bigamy is an offence under Section 494 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), punishable with seven years rigorous imprisonment and fine, but this penal provision will not apply, if the offender is a member of the Scheduled Tribes.
This is the import of a recent judgement of the Delhi High Court. The significant judgement rife with serious implications was delivered by Mr Justice M.S.A. Siddiqui, while allowing a revision petition, setting aside orders of an Additional Sessions Judge. The Sessions Judge had reversed an order of discharge passed by a Metropolitan Magistrate in a bigamy case.
Ms Surajmani Stella Kaujur, daughter of a former Union Minister and the first wife of Mr Durga Charan Hansdah, a senior RBI officer at Hyderabad (the petitioner before the high court) aggrieved by her husbands conduct in marrying a second time, filed a complaint under Section 494, IPC against him and his second wife Hansfha.
On the filing of the complaint, legal process was initiated against the petitioners husband. After recording pre-charge evidence, the Metropolitan Magistrate discharged him on the ground that the complainant, first wife, had failed to prove that the second marriage allegedly contracted by the accused husband attracted the penal provisional 494, IPC.
The first wife challenged the discharge order passed by the Metropolitan Magistrate before the Additional Sessions Judge which was allowed vide orders dated February 26, 1997. The Additional Sessions Judge directed the trial court to frame a charge against the accused husband under section 494, IPC. Hence, the revision petition before the high court by the accused husband.
Assailing the validity of the impugned order, Mr Anukulchandra Pradhan, counsel for the accused husband, urged that the parties being members of the Scheduled Tribes were not governed by the provisions of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, and the Sessions Judge had committed a patent illegality in applying the provision of the Act to the facts of the present case and holding that a prima facie case under 494, IPC, had been made out against the petitioner-husband.
Analysing the provisions of Section 5 of the Act which prescribes conditions to be fulfilled for the solemnisation of a marriage between two Hindus, the high court in its judgement said that the marriage between two Hindus was null and void if either of them had a spouse living at the time of marriage.
"Section 17 of the Act provides that any marriage between two Hindus solemnised after the commencement of the act is void if at the date of such marriage either party had a husband or a wife living. Thus, Section 17 of the Act, statutorily recognises the principle of monogamous marriages among the Hindus," the high court added.
The court said the provision of Section 17 had to be read in harmony and conjunction with the provision of Section 494, IPC as Section 17 clearly provides that provisions of Sections 494 and 495, IPC, shall apply accordingly.
The court said that a complaint by a Hindu wife against her husband for the offence of bigamy was maintainable as the effect of the Section 17 of the Act was to make Section 494, IPC, applicable to Hindus.
"In the instant
case, it is an admitted fact that the petitioner and his
second wife are members of the Scheduled Tribes. Under
Section 2 (2) of the Act it has been clearly stipulated
that the Act would not apply to the members of the
Scheduled Tribes unless there is a notification of the
Central Government in the official gazette, making the
Act applicable to the Scheduled Tribes," the court
Asia catches Hollywoods fancy
NEW DELHI, April 13 (PTI) The new millennium in Hollywood cinema will definitely belong to Asian themes, directors and actors, says a Malaysian-born Canadian filmmaker whose latest movie deals with an NRI family caught in the vortex of religious, cultural and sexual dilemmas.
"They (Hollywood) are running out of ideas and Asia is still unexplored. The new century will definitely belong to Asian themes ... in the last five years lots of Asian directors and actors have made a name in Hollywood", says Hunt Hoe, director of the provocatively-titled "Seducing Maarya".
At the same time, however, Hoe cautions the wanna-be Hollywood honchos from Asia that "usually they impose a lot on you and the fact that you are original (in ideas) is not well accepted."
"You could be the flavour of the year, but there have not been many serious crossovers to Hollywood from Asia. Thats unfortunate," says Hoe, who recently came to India with "Seducing Maarya" starring Mohan Agashe and Nobel Laureate Amartya Sens daughter Nandana Sen.
Hoe, who dreams of making a "true blue musical" someday, has, however, focussed on the theme of tradition versus passion in his new film which examines the new emerging family in Canadas multi-racial society, undergoing the turmoil of changing religious, cultural and sexual values.
"I was developing an immigrant story in either China or India, places where tradition is very much strong and alive, but finally decided that it would be more exciting in India, especially with so many arranged marriages happening here," Hoe says.
"My story is not about heroes and heroines or winners and losers the characters are all bruised people, people with scars.
"I used the Ganga in a very symbolic manner, as a metaphor of life it flows and you only see the surface, but never get to know what lies underneath", says the director about the film which was shown at the last International Film Festival of India (IFFI2000) in New Delhi.
The film, revolves around an NRI father who searches and finds the "perfect Indian bride" for his son who later turns out to be a homosexual. It is "about issues that are sensitive".
"We all know these issues exist. I am not judging them. They are about real people and how you deal with them", says Hoe, whose debut film "Foreign Ghosts" was shown during the 1998 IFFI.
Jaya has 7,109 sarees: witness
CHENNAI, April 13 (UNI) Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and AIADMK General Secretary J. Jayalalitha possessed 7,109 sarees of different varieties worth Rs 88.22 lakh, a witness in the Rs 66.65 crore disproportionate wealth case pending against her and three others, deposed before a special judge.
When the case came up for hearing before Special Judge-1 A.C. Arumughaperumal Adityan, the prosecution witness, Mr R. Sengalvarayan, the then Manager (Powerloom and Silks) of Co-Optex at Egmore, deposed that on the instructions of higher officials of his department, he went and met the DVAC officials on December 16, 1996. The next day he was taken to Ms Jayalalithas residence to evaluate the sarees and other textile items in connection with the case.
He said there were 914 silk sarees worth Rs 61.13 lakh, besides 6,198 polyester and cotton sarees, churidars and nighties worth Rs 27.08 lakh. He evaluated them and submitted a report to the DVAC officials. Apart from this, there were 2,140 old sarees.
Another witness, Ms Leelavathy, an official in the Registration Department, deposed that on February 15, 1995, 10 firms, in which Ms Jayalalithas close aide Sasikala Natarajan, her erstwhile foster son V.N. Sudhakaran, Ms Sasikalas relative J. Elavarasi and Lex Property Developments were cited as partners, were registered. The principal place of business for all these firms cited in the documents was Number 21, Wellington Plaza, here.
Wage boards report not to be delayed
NEW DELHI, April 13 (PTI) The Labour Minister Mr Satyanarain Jatiya, today assured journalists that there would not be "much delay now" in finalisation of the report of the Manisana Wage Boards for the newspaper industry.
"There has already been an inordinate delay....," he told reporters but ducked questions about a time frame.
PMs concern over attack on Christians
NEW DELHI, April 13 (UNI) The Prime Minister, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, today phoned the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister, Mr Ram Prakash Gupta, to express concern over the reports about attacks on nuns and priests of a Christian institution in Mathura district on April 10.
5 employees of
to treat malaria
Album on V.P.
assurance on Alamatti dam
filmmaker Sarpotdar dead
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