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AAP MLA arrested for sexual harassment; Kejriwal attacks PM with ‘Emergency’ taunt

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New Delhi, June 25 : The arrest of an AAP MLA on Saturday opened a new front in the constant feuding between the Delhi government and the Centre, with Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of declaring “Emergency” in the national capital and of police filing “false cases” against his party legislators.

Aam Admi Party (AAP) legislator Dinesh Mohaniya was arrested on charges of “sexual harassment” and sent to judicial custody. The complaint was filed by a woman who visited his office-cum residence in Sangam Vihar over water supply problems.

Mohaniya, an MLA from Sangam Vihar in south Delhi, was picked up by a Delhi Police team while he was addressing a press conference at his residence in the constituency.

The police action created a commotion at the venue with the personnel arriving right in front of live cameras and whisking away the MLA.

Mohaniya complained that he was taken “forcibly” and alleged that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government was seeking to divert attention from the probe into the murder of NDMC estate officer M.M. Khan.

The AAP MLA was taken to Neb Sarai Police station in south Delhi. Police officials said there was a complaint against him by a woman of “touching her inappropriately”. They said the woman was part of a group of 10-12 women who had complained of misbehaviour and manhandling while they had visited his office-cum-residence to inform him of problems in water supply.

Taking cognisance of the complaints, Delhi police booked Mohaniya under charges of manhandling, sexual harassment, inappropriately touching a woman and trying to disrobe her modesty.

Mohaniya was later produced before a duty magistrate in Saket court who directed that he be sent to judicial custody till June 27.

Kejriwal launched a frontal attack on Modi following Mohaniya’s arrest,

“Modi declares emergency in Delhi. Arresting, raiding, terrorizing, filing false cases against all those whom Delhi elected,” Kejriwal tweeted.

AAP leaders also addressed a press conference and said Mohaniya was the same person who had sought to expose BJP leader Sher Singh Dagar through a sting. “Dagar had tried to bribe him to join BJP, but Mohaniya exposed Dagar through a sting operation,” AAP leader Raghav Chadha said.

“Today Dagar is free while Mohaniya has been arrested,” he added.

AAP MLA Saurabh Bharadwaj said the BJP is making a mockery of the law.

“Can you imagine that an MLA in Delhi, of all the places, disrobing a woman in front of hundreds of party workers? This is beyond my imagination. The allegation of molestation against Mohaniya is false and this is witch-hunting by the Modi government,” Bhardwaj told Times Now news channel.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) alleged that the arrest of Mohaniya had exposed the “anti-women character” of AAP leaders.

“Arrest of Dinesh Mohaniya on allegations of slapping and harassing women has brought out in the open the anti-women character of the AAP leaders,” BJP Delhi unit chief Satish Upadhyay said here.

Congress leader Sharmistha Mukherjee also slammed AAP.

“This kind of roguish behaviour is not acceptable. These cases should be seriously investigated. Nobody is above the law,” she said.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Ishwar Singh said that initially they had charged Mohaniya under section 323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt), 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation) and 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) of the IPC which was levelled by the group of women in their complaint on Thursday.

“Later we added sections 354 A (making sexually coloured remarks or an offence of sexual harassment) and 354 B (act with intent to disrobe the modesty of a woman) of the IPC after two of the women independently gave their statements,” the officer said.

He said a notice was given to Mohaniya on Friday evening and then again on Saturday morning to join police investigations but he “refused to accept” these. “We had to arrest him as he was not cooperating in the inquiry,” the officer said.

He indicated that there could be more arrests in the case.

On Friday, a case was slapped on Mohaniya for allegedly slapping a 60-year-old man in Tughlakabad area of south Delhi when he had gone to meet people distressed over poor water supply in the area. Mohaniya is vice chairman of the Delhi Jal Board.

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Virendra appointed new DG of West Bengal police

Ajay Kumar Nand, who was IGP Counter Insurgency Force (CIF), will be the Director, security, replacing SN Gupta, it said.

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Kolkata, May 25 : The West Bengal government has appointed Virendra as the new director-general of police, replacing current DGP Surajit Kar Purkayastha, who would be retiring on May 31, a notification issued late last night said.

Virendra was posted as the DG (security).

Ajay Kumar Nand, who was IGP Counter Insurgency Force (CIF), will be the Director, security, replacing SN Gupta, it said.

Gupta was made the new ADG CIF with additional charges of ADG, establishment, the notification said.

According to a senior official at the secretariat, a new post — advisor (security) — has been created to accommodate Purkayastha.

“Kar Purkayastha is highly experienced and the chief minister prefers him and wants to utilise him in security-related issues. He will likely be advising to the chief minister on security-related issues,” he said.

Incidentally, Purkayastha was the first DGP in the state who was given an extension after his official retirement in 2016.

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Mumbai municipal commissioner appears before high court

Vacation judge Justice S J Kathawala had summoned Mehta after the civic body failed to comply with directions passed by the court on a petition filed by tenants of the century-old Bhatia Building in south Mumbai.

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Mumbai municipal commissioner Ajoy Mehta

Mumbai, May 24 : Mumbai municipal commissioner Ajoy Mehta today appeared before the Bombay High Court and assured that the court’s directions on a plea by some tenants of a building in south Mumbai would be complied with.

Vacation judge Justice S J Kathawala had summoned Mehta after the civic body failed to comply with directions passed by the court on a petition filed by tenants of the century-old Bhatia Building in south Mumbai.

Mehta today appeared before Justice Kathawala, and assured the judge that the corporation would follow the court’s orders and submit a report.

The tenants had alleged that the landlords were carrying out unauthorised construction on the ground floor which had damaged the building’s foundation beams.

Last month, the landlords assured the court that they would not carry out further work, and would repair the damage caused to the foundation.

The petition had also claimed that excavation work on a plot behind the building was also causing cracks.

The high court then directed that a committee of experts from the municipal corporation and the state housing agency MHADA should visit the building and ensure that no excavation work was carried out.

The court asked the committee to submit a report.

However, the court was informed two days ago that excavation work on the plot was still going on.

The revelation invited the court’s wrath on the municipal body.

The authorities were putting tenants’ lives in danger, Justice Kathawala said, asking the commissioner to be present.

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Uttar Pradesh, Himachal reels under Heat Wave

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New Delhi, May 24: A major portion of Uttar Pradesh continued to reel under an intense heat wave on Thursday, weather officials said.

Heat wave conditions also occurred in some parts of Himachal Pradesh with Una recording a maximum temperature of 42.6 degrees Celsius and the state capital Shimla a high of 27.8 degrees Celsius, the weatherman said.

Dry winds blowing across the Uttar Pradesh state capital and many other regions forced people to stay indoors.

The heat wave is particularly high in the state’s central region and Bundelkhand.

Mahoba was the highest with 47.5 degrees Celsius followed by Jalaun with 47 degrees, Hamirpur 45.6 degrees.

Temperatures recorded at Farukkhabad was 44.3 degrees celsius Auraiyya 45 degrees, Unnao 44 degrees and Kannauj while Etawah also remained unbearably hot at 43 degrees celsius.

There has been a slight improvement in weather conditions in Kanpur after two days of scorching heat. Two heat-related deaths were reported in the Poorvanchal region.

Allahabad recorded a maximum of 42.2 degrees celsius while the state capital remained equally hot at 43 degrees celsius.

The weatherman predicted continuance of the weather for at least a week and advised people to remain indoors.

Many medical facilities and major towns of the state have reported patients suffering from vomiting and diarrhea – both symptoms of heat stroke.

Himachal Pradesh also witnessed heat wave conditions in some parts.

“Most of the towns in Una, Bilaspur and Kullu district recorded a maximum temperature three to five notches above the average mainly due to prevailing dry weather,” an official at the meteorological office here told IANS.

He said Shimla’s maximum temperature was three notches above the average.

Sundernagar in Mandi district recorded a high of 37.9 degrees Celsius while the maximum temperature in Bhuntar in Kullu district was 36 degrees, Dharamsala in Kangra district was 32.4 degrees and Kalpa in Kinnaur district was 23.2 degrees.

The Met department said the weather would largely remain dry till May 28. After that there are chances of thundershowers.

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