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SC to hear plea of gang-rape accused on shifting trial

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear on Tuesday the plea of one of the six accused in the December 16 Delhi gang rape and murder for shifting the trial to a place outside Delhi.

A bench headed by Chief Justice Altamas Kabir listed the matter for tomorrow after the advocate for accused Mukesh pleaded for an urgent hearing on the ground that free and fair hearing is not possible in Delhi because of strong public reaction against him.

Mukesh, who has been charged with murder, gang rape and unnatural offences, submitted in his petition that in view of regular agitation, police and judicial officials are allegedly under pressure to pass orders according to the demands of the agitators and fair hearing is not possible.

“The sentiment has gone into the root of each home in Delhi by which even the judicial officers and the State are not spared and in these circumstances, he cannot get justice in Delhi at all,” the petition, filed through his advocate, said.

The case has been assigned to the fast track court where the day-to-day proceedings will begin from today.

The petition said that “due to media reports and agitations and due to political statements and personal interest shown by the Chief Minister as well as various Cabinet ministers, judiciary is under pressure to work against the petitioner”.

The accused has sought transfer of the case to Mathura in Uttar Pradesh.

There are six accused in the case including a juvenile. — PTI






Asaduddin Owaisi surrenders, sent to judicial custody

HYDERABAD: MIM chief and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi, against whom a non-bailable warrant was pending in a 2005 case, on Monday appeared before a court in Sangareddy town of Medak district which remanded him in judicial custody till February 2. 

Asaduddin, who is accused number 1 in the case, filed a 'recall petition' in the court seeking cancellation of NBW. However, the court dismissed his petition and remanded him in judicial custody till February 2, a senior police officer said.

Asaduddin along with his brother jailed Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) MLA Akbaruddin Owaisi were among others booked by the Patancheru police for obstructing the then Medak Collector A K Singhal from discharging his duties, among other charges.

Following his remand, Asaduddin was in the process of moving a bail application in the court, sources said.

Earlier, Akbaruddin Owaisi, who is under judicial custody in connection with an alleged hate speech, was produced before the court in Sangareddy town on January 17 by the Patancheru Police for execution of NBW in the case registered against the legislator in 2005.

The case was registered on a complaint by a revenue official that MIM leaders, including Akbaruddin Owaisi and his brother Asaduddin Owaisi, protested demolition of a place of worship at Muttangi village near Patancheru during a road widening process of Hyderabad-Mumbai National Highway.

They had allegedly engaged in heated arguments with the then district collector A K Singhal and other officers.

Subsequently, some MIM leaders had appeared before the court and filed 'recall petition'. However, the Owaisi brothers "failed" to appear before
the court, after which a non-bailable warrant (NBW) was issued against them as they did not turn up in court in connection with the case registered in 2005.

Owaisi brothers and others were booked under IPC sections 153-A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion), 147 (rioting), 186 (obstructing public servant while discharging duties) and seven other IPC sections. — PTI






UP ministers booked for kidnapping panchayat leader

DEHRADUN: Two Uttar Pradesh ministers were among 28 persons booked in Uttarakhand for the alleged kidnapping of a panchayat leader and 27 of his associates, a senior police official said in Dehradun on Monday.

Moolchand Chauhan and Manoj Paras, both of them ministers of state from UP, have been named as accused in a case of kidnapping of a panchayat leader from Bijnore, IG (law and order) Ram Singh Meena told PTI.

Chauhan’s son Amit Chauhan, Yashvir Singh and Rashid Hussain have also been named accused in the case lodged against 23 others at a police station in Pauri district on January 18, he said. They have been charged with kidnapping a panchayat leader from Bijnore and 27 others from a resort at Laxman Jhula in Rishikesh, the official said, adding the charges against the accused are being probed.

While the exact motive behind the kidnapping of the panchayat leader is yet to be ascertained, police suspect that he was abducted in view of Bijnore zila panchayat election being held on Monday.

According to the report lodged in this connection, the accused allegedly barged into panchayat leader Pawan Kumar’s room at the resort near Laxman Jhula on the night of January 17 and assaulted him.

They kidnapped him and took him to an unknown destination, Laxman Jhula Police Station SHO D. S. Rawat said, quoting the FIR lodged by Pawan Kumar’s son Rohit.

A police team has been sent to Bijnore to find out whether those allegedly kidnapped by the two UP ministers and their associates turn up to vote in the polls or not, he said adding this would determine the course of further investigation into the case. — PTI





Train fare hike from today

New Delhi: With the hike in rail fares coming into effect from Monday, the big question is whether the hike will ensure much needed modernisation of the country’s lifeline and make train travel safer for the millions of people for whom air travel is not an option.

Successive rail ministers had rued over lack of finances for not being able to meet the modernisation targets before Congress’ Pawan Kumar Bansal bit the bullet and hike rail fares - first in over a decade.

The fare hike is expected to mop up an additional Rs 6,600 crore annually for the government. This is the first increase in rail fares in a decade's time as the last was during Nitish Kumar's tenure as railway minister.

The proposals will rake in additional Rs 1200 crore between January 21 and March 31 this year, Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal had said while announcing the decision and did not rule out a hike in the freight tariff. He, however, did not rule out a hike in the freight tariff.

Importantly, after the hike in diesel prices, the railways will only net an additional Rs 2700 cr annually.Back






Kalyan Singh's party merges with BJP

Lucknow: Kalyan Singh’s Jan Kranti Party (Rashtrawadi) will formally merge with the Bharatiya Janata Party on Monday.

The merger will formally take place at Juhlelal Park, where BJP is scheduled to hold Atal Shankhnaad rally.

BJP leaders including party president Nitin Gadkari, Varun Gandhi, Murli Manohar Joshi, Kalraj Mishra, Rajnath Singh and many others will be seen at the rally today. The party leaders will blow the poll bugle for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

Kalyan Singh’s back to BJP comes after fruitful meetings held last year with the BJP brass in New Delhi, including party president Nitin Gadkari.

BJP insiders say the groundwork for Kalyan Singh's return was done by Uma Bharti, who had sided with him even when he was attacking former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and other BJP leaders.

Uma Bharti has networked with Gadkari to bring back Kalyan Singh and cement the one-time OBC vote bank with the larger Hindutva support base.Back




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