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N A T I O N

SC seeks tax details from Mulayam family 
New Delhi, June 7
In a serious setback to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav facing fresh probe by the Income Tax (IT) Department for tax liabilities on alleged disproportionate assets, the Supreme Court today refused to stay authorities’ notices to him and his family members and directed them to submit details of tax returns for the past six years.

NDA leaders to court arrest; BJP men block traffic
New Delhi, June 7
Demanding an immediate rollback in the petroleum prices, the Opposition NDA today announced a protest programme, including satyagraha and courting arrest by its top leaders here on June 12.

Petitioner heaves a sigh of relief
Lucknow, June 7
Life for Vishwanath Chaturvedi and his family has been hard ever since he filed a PIL in the Supreme Court eight months ago alleging that Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav and his family members have accumulated assets more than their known sources of income.

Man climbs tower to press for amenities
Meerut, June 7
Taking his demands to an unwarranted high, a former municipal councillor climbed a mobile transmission tower and threatened to commit suicide but the police managed to coax him down after a couple of hours.











EARLIER STORIES




Activists of the Socialist Unity Centre of India demonstrate against the increase in petrol and diesel prices in New Delhi on Wednesday
Activists of the Socialist Unity Centre of India demonstrate against the increase in petrol and diesel prices in New Delhi on Wednesday. — Tribune photo by Mukesh Aggarwal

Son sold for Rs 1,200
Bhubaneswar, June 7
Driven by poverty and hunger, a woman in Orissa sold her one-month-old son to a resident of her village, local media reports Wednesday. Kendruka Laki, originally a resident of Sonepulmunda village in the state's Koraput district, has been living in her parents' house in nearby Katulpeta village after her husband left the village in search of a job about seven months ago.

Minister harasses daughter-in-law
Hyderabad, June 7
Union Minister of State for Coal and well-known Telugu film personality D. Narayana Rao has been accused of dowry harassment by his daughter-in-law. Twentynine-year-old Susheela has alleged at a press conference here that the police is not acting on her complaint against her husband Taraka Hari Hara Prabhu (34) and her in-laws Narayana Rao and Padma.

Rape victim gives birth to baby
New Delhi, June 7
A 12-year-old girl, who had been allegedly raped by her neighbour in a village in Haryana nine months ago, has given birth to an underweight baby boy at the Safdarjung Hospital here.

Zahira's sister, brother held guilty
Mumbai, June 7
Sahira Sheikh and Nasibullah, sister and brother of Zahira Shaikh and prime witnesses in the Best Bakery case, were today found guilty by a sessions court of giving false evidence.

Rape case witness arrested
Ajmer/Tonk, June 7
A prosecution witness in the case, involving the alleged rape of a Japanese woman at a Pushkar hotel in April, has been arrested in connection with the murder of a woman from Delhi and remanded in police custody.

Sonia’s byelection challenged
New Delhi, June 7
Ten advocates from Varanasi have filed a writ petition in the SC challenging Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s byelection as member of the Lok Sabha from Rae Bareli.

72-year-old fails Class-X exam 37th time

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SC seeks tax details from Mulayam family 
Legal Correspondent

New Delhi, June 7
In a serious setback to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav facing fresh probe by the Income Tax (IT) Department for tax liabilities on alleged disproportionate assets, the Supreme Court today refused to stay authorities’ notices to him and his family members and directed them to submit details of tax returns for the past six years.

The apex court while hearing a pending public interest litigation (PIL) by Congressman Vishwanath Chaturvedi, seeking CBI probe into Yadav and his family members’ assets, a Bench of Mr Justice Arijit Pasayat and Mr Justice C.K.Thakker gave four week’s time to them to place on record income tax and wealth tax returns for the period between 2001-02 and 2006-07.

Besides the CM, tax returns of his MP son Akhilesh Yadav, daughter-in-law (Akhilesh’s wife) Dimpal Yadav and his another son Prateek Yadav from his second wife Ms Sadhna, were sought by the Court while fixing further hearing on the PIL for July 17.

When Yadav’s counsel Mukul Rohtagi sought stay on the IT Department’s May 5 notices to the CM and Akhilesh seeking full details of their movable and immovable properties acquired during past six years, the Court refused to grant any interim stay on the notices to them.

Rohtagi sought stay on the IT authorities’ fresh probe into the assets on the ground that when the apex court has sought similar details, his clients could not be subjected to dual and parallel proceedings on the same issue.

But the Court said a parallel could not be drawn in the two proceedings, clarifying that there had been numerous instances where in spite of the IT Department giving clean chit to an assessee, the court had come to contrary findings of violation of the Income Tax Act.

The IT Department in its notices had sought details of the sources of income of the CM’s family members for the past six years, movable and immovable assets owned and acquired (with dates) by them, sources of income, names and addresses of person from whom any property was bought, details of bank accounts both in individual’s and joint names for past four years, credit cards, foreign visits if any with purpose, liabilities for past four years with capital accounts and any sale of property.

Rohtagi said that his clients had no problem in placing on record the tax details which were complete and alleged that the latest IT initiative against Mulayam Singh and his family members was nothing but a Congress “ploy to destabalise his government and defame him to get political mileage out of it”.

When Chaturvedi’s counsel P .N .Lekhi, who had sought CBI probe into the matter said it was not so simple a case for the CM to raise the issue of political vendetta ,but involved the question of probity in public life, the Bench observed “we are not for a moment saying that it cannot be probed, but it has to be found whether he (CM) had any source of income which is acceptable under the law”.

The court said the IT authorities could seek explanation about the undisclosed sources of income and that has to be probed .

The PIL had listed nearly 30 properties valued worth several crore rupees in the name of Yadav, Akhilesh, Dimpal Yadav and Prateek allegedly acquired over 28 years.

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NDA leaders to court arrest; BJP men block traffic
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 7
Demanding an immediate rollback in the petroleum prices, the Opposition NDA today announced a protest programme, including satyagraha and courting arrest by its top leaders here on June 12.

At an emergency meeting here, the Opposition alliance also announced plans for protests and demonstrations at all district headquarters on June 19.

Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee himself is likely to lead the protests in the Capital, if he is available, BJP spokesperson Sushma Swaraj told newspersons after an hour-long meeting.

“We want to give a message that the manner in which we were together in power, we will also struggle together while in opposition”, she said.

The meeting, chaired by Leader of Opposition L.K. Advani, and attended among others by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and JD (U) Chief Sharad Yadav, adopted a resolution condemning the hike in prices of petrol and diesel and demanding its immediate withdrawal.

Though the UPA government came to power in the name of the common man, every action of theirs in the last two years had been making their life much harder, it said.

“The frequent increase in prices of petroleum products is the most glaring and cruel example of the anti-people policies of the UPA”, the NDA said.

Pointing that fuel prices have been hiked seven times over the past two years, it said they have a cascading effect on the entire price situation.

Warning the UPA government that it will not tolerate the hike and adopt all non-violent means to get it rolled back, the NDA demanded increasing the stagnating oil production on a war footing.

It called upon the UPA government to cut down wasteful expenditure and reduce duties further so that the increase in imported prices could be absorbed without affecting the economy.

Meanwhile, as part of its “Chakka jam” protest against the price hike, the BJP workers today blocked traffic at many major intersections in the Capital and party president Rajnath Singh joined protesters in the Moti Nagar area in West Delhi.

The Socialist Unity Centre of India (SUCI) also held a demonstration in the Capital to protest against the hike in prices of petroleum products.

The SUCI also criticised the role of the Left Parties like the CPM and the CPI saying that they were shedding crocodile tears on the plight of the common man while tacitly supporting the UPA government on the price hike.

Meanwhile, the CPM and the CPI and their affiliated organisations also held protest against fuel price hike here. They have already announced an all-India protest on June 13.

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Petitioner heaves a sigh of relief
Shahira Naim

Lucknow, June 7
Life for Vishwanath Chaturvedi and his family has been hard ever since he filed a PIL in the Supreme Court eight months ago alleging that Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav and his family members have accumulated assets more than their known sources of income.

Today he breathed a sigh of relief when the apex court responding to his petition directed Yadav, his son Akhilesh and other members of his family to place before it, within four weeks, returns of income tax and wealth tax filed by them for the assessment years of 2001-2006.

Speaking to TNS from Delhi Chaturvedi said, “Now that the court has taken cognizance of my petition, I hope the pressure on me and my family to withdraw the case will subside”.

Mulayam Singh Yadav had charged the Congress on Tuesday of indulging in the politics of retribution. Ironically, his own government has left no stone unturned to harass Chaturvedi and his family since October 2006 when he first filed the PIL.

“I had been forced to leave Lucknow and live like a fugitive in Delhi”, alleged Chaturvedi while blaming the Uttar Pradesh government of denying him security despite a February 9 order issued by the Union of India granting security to him and his family.

On the contrary, Chaturvedi complains that the Lucknow Development Authority that had allotted him house no L/1 110 in Sector G in Kanpur Road Housing Colony on hire-purchase basis in 2002 refused to accept his Rs 15,000 three-monthly installment drafts since January this year.

Finally in April the LDA cancelled his allotment and the Chaturvedis went to court. “Despite a April 3 High Court order staying the LDA cancellation a sub inspector went to his house on June 5 and has given us three days notice to vacate the house or show the property papers. ”, declared his wife Saroj who lives in the house.

“How can I show the papers when they have been submitted in the court and a case is pending” she pointed out.

According to her the police has lodged an FIR at the local Krishna Nagar police station charging Vishwanath Chaturvedi of forging the registration papers of the house and living in it without proper possession.

“The sub inspector Sudama Prasad Chowdhry has been regularly coming and tormenting me and my family during the last two months. But this time he has threatened to throw our belongings out on the road”, said a clearly distressed Saroj.

Chaturvedi who is virtually waging a lone battle against the Mulayam Singh Yadav government also charged a former Congress minister from Uttar Pradesh of contacting him with a deal offer. “I was asked to accept Rs 5crore and three plots in NOIDA which I refused, he maintained. 

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Man climbs tower to press for amenities

Meerut, June 7
Taking his demands to an unwarranted high, a former municipal councillor climbed a mobile transmission tower and threatened to commit suicide but the police managed to coax him down after a couple of hours.

With Meerut Nagar Nigam polls round the corner, former member Alimuddin Ansari yesterday climbed the tower at Hapur Road, pulled out his mobile phone and threatened to jump down from it if his ward was not provided better civic amenities.

Two policemen tried to climb the tower and bring him down but failed after which Ansari and Kotwali police station Circle Officer (CO) Ram Suresh were engaged in a long telephonic conversation in the media glare and a gathering of curious onlookers.

The CO assured Ansari of shouldering the responsibility of his demands for more water taps, repaired street lights and desilted drains in his ward. Ansari then climbed down.

Nigam officials also gave him an assurance that his demands would be fulfilled, the CO told reporters.

In a letter dated May 30, Ansari had threatened to climb the tower on June 6 to press for his demands and would "commit suicide at 11:30 am" if they were not met. Accordingly, he climbed the tower. — PTI

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Son sold for Rs 1,200

Bhubaneswar, June 7
Driven by poverty and hunger, a woman in Orissa sold her one-month-old son to a resident of her village, local media reports Wednesday.
Kendruka Laki, originally a resident of Sonepulmunda village in the state's Koraput district, has been living in her parents' house in nearby Katulpeta village after her husband left the village in search of a job about seven months ago.

Laki, mother of a five-year-old son, gave birth to a second child two months ago. When she found it difficult to maintain her two children, she allegedly sold her newly born son to a villager for Rs 1,200, the Oriya daily Sambad reported.

Orissa's western districts of Kalahandi, Koraput, Bolangir and Deogarh are considered to be the most economically backward areas of the country.

Hunger deaths were first reported from Orissa in 1965-66, when a drought in Kalahandi and Koraput districts led to a famine that claimed around 1,000 lives.

Unfortunately, the situation has not improved much over the decades. People in the region continue to die of hunger, even as the country makes rapid strides in other economic fields.

Meanwhile, another woman, Bharati Bhuyan, died of hunger last Monday in the state's Deogarh district after her impoverished husband failed to get food for her for over six days, The Samaja newspaper reported Tuesday.—IANS

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Minister harasses daughter-in-law
Tribune News Service

Hyderabad, June 7
Union Minister of State for Coal and well-known Telugu film personality D. Narayana Rao has been accused of dowry harassment by his daughter-in-law.
Twentynine-year-old Susheela has alleged at a press conference here that the police is not acting on her complaint against her husband Taraka Hari Hara Prabhu (34) and her in-laws Narayana Rao and Padma.

She said she had a love marriage with Prabhu in March 1995 against the wishes of his parents. The couple has a 10-year-old son.

“My husband and my in-laws have started harassing me since last year for more dowry, when I had lodged a complaint in June, 2005,” she said.

According to her, officers of the women protection cell brokered peace between the wife and husband. It was agreed that Ms Susheela would be provided with a flat to live and another house, the rental income from which would support her.

But suddenly her in-laws started harassing her for divorce and were refusing to pay rent for her flat, Ms Susheela told mediapersons.

The police, however, says that the case is more complicated. “We are verifying the allegations. The couple never stayed with Mr Narayana Rao’s family, so there is no question of their harassing her,” said Central Crime Station Inspector L.K. Kashinath.

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Rape victim gives birth to baby

New Delhi, June 7
A 12-year-old girl, who had been allegedly raped by her neighbour in a village in Haryana nine months ago, has given birth to an underweight baby boy at the Safdarjung Hospital here.

The girl delivered the baby yesterday. Interestingly, the parents were unaware that she was pregnant.

“We had no idea that she was pregnant. A local doctor had told us that her belly had bloated due to water retention”, Ramesh Kumar, father of the victim who hails from Bamnikhera village of Palwal district said.

The girl got pregnant after she was allegedly raped by her neighbour Subhash, who had intimidated her against informing her parents about the incident. Subhash is married and has three children.

Meanwhile, a team of police officials recorded the girl’s statement at the hospital on Monday night and registered a case on the charges of rape, trespassing and criminal intimidation against Subhash, who has absconded. — PTI 

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Zahira's sister, brother held guilty

Mumbai, June 7
Sahira Sheikh and Nasibullah, sister and brother of Zahira Shaikh and prime witnesses in the Best Bakery case, were today found guilty by a sessions court of giving false evidence.

Judge Abhay Thipsay, pronouncing them guilty, said he would give the order on quantum of sentence, tomorrow.

While Sahira admitted that she had made some false statements, Nasibullah did not admit. The trial of Zahira Shaikh in the matter of giving false evidence is yet to begin. — PTI

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Rape case witness arrested

Ajmer/Tonk, June 7
A prosecution witness in the case, involving the alleged rape of a Japanese woman at a Pushkar hotel in April, has been arrested in connection with the murder of a woman from Delhi and remanded in police custody.

Zaved Khan, a hotelier, was arrested soon after recording his statement as a prosecution witness in the Japanese rape case at a fast-track court in Ajmer district yesterday, Tonk SP Prem Singh Chudawat said.

He said Zaved was wanted in connection with the murder of Reshma Mehrunisa from Delhi who was shot dead at a farmhouse in Tonk district nine months ago. — PTI 

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Sonia’s byelection challenged

New Delhi, June 7
Ten advocates from Varanasi have filed a writ petition in the SC challenging Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s byelection as member of the Lok Sabha from Rae Bareli.

The petitioners represented by Santosh Kumar Srivastava have challenged her election on the grounds that her byelection is hit by Article 102 (1) (d) of the Indian Constitution under which, a person shall be disqualified for being chosen as, and for being a member of either House of Parliament if he or she is under any acknowledgement of allegiance or adherence to a foreign state. — UNI

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72-year-old fails Class-X exam 37th time

Jaipur, June 7
A 72-year-old of Kohari village near Behrod will have to remain a bachelor for another year till he takes his board exams again. Shiv Charan has pledged not to marry until he clears Class X board exam. He has taken the examination for 37 years, but could not clear it. He says mathematics always does him in. This time he secured eight out of 100 in the subject. He says it is not his nature to change boards according to convenience. He would rather not marry, but changing over to a easier board is unthinkable. — UNI

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