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Cabinet nod for railways’ plans to commercially develop space at stations

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Indian Railways

New Delhi, Oct 3 (IANS) Paving the way for large-scale modernization of railway stations, the Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved Railways’ station redevelopment plans so as to commercially develop space in and around stations, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said on Wednesday.

The Cabinet, under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, also provided for a longer lease tenure of up to 99 years from the previous 45 years.

According to Prasad, the name of the agency would be Indian Railway Stations Development Corp Ltd (IRSDC). Calling the Cabinet decision a progressive move, Prasad said: “IRSDC shall be the nodal agency for the development of railway stations across the country.”

Developing railway facilities will not only benefit the commuters but also help the Indian Railways make use of its unused or under-used properties.

“It was a decisions based on the feedbacks collected from the government’s earlier railway modernisation attempts,” Prasad said.

The Minister said redevelopment of major stations across the country is planned by leveraging commercial development of land and air space in and around the station, saying “this program will help provide state-of-the-art amenities for passengers, generate additional revenues and will be overall at least cost neutral to Ministry of Railways over a basket of stations.”

“Furthermore, redevelopment of railway stations across the country will have a multiplier effect in the economy with increased job creation and improved economic growth.”

“IRSDC being the nodal agency will prepare the overall strategic plan and business plans for individual or a group of stations ensuring cost neutrality of this programme. Upon approval of business plans by Ministry of Railways, IRSDC or other project development agencies will take up the work of station redevelopment,” Prasad said.

He said that Railway/RLDA/IRSDC will be planning and development authority for Railway land in consultation with urban local bodies, DDA or other Union Territories, to transfer land on free-hold basis to Railways. This would enable Ministry of Railways to accelerate the redevelopment of major stations across the country on an overall cost neutral basis. These redevelopment efforts will lead to creation of state-of-the-art smart stations that will function as mini smart cities.

“Railway passengers and Industry shall be benefited at large. Passengers will now get amenities at par with international railway terminals and a large number of local job creation is expected as a positive external outcome of this program,” he added.

A Cabinet approval was obtained on June 24, 2015 to redevelop ‘A1′ and ‘A’ category stations by Zonal Railways through Cabinet approved procedures and for a lease period of 45 years. However, insufficient interest was visible amongst the prospective bidders.

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Scribe suffering from Covid jumps off 4th floor of AIIMS, condition critical

The doctors at AIIMS claimed that the journalist was having hallucinations for the past one week. They also claimed that he was in depression.

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Coronavirus News

New Delhi, July 6 : A 37-year-old journalist, who had tested positive for Covid-19 a few days ago, jumped from the fourth floor of the AIIMS trauma centre where he was receiving treatment, doctors said on Monday. His condition is stated to be critical.

The police said that the journalist has been admitted to the ICU in critical condition. The doctors said that he has received multiple fractures. The incident occurred at around 2 p.m.

“The 37-year-old man was admitted to the Covid-19 ward in the Taruma Centre on the fourth floor on June 24,” DCP (South West) Devender Arya said.

The journalist was kept in the isolation room of the Covid-19 ward on the fourth floor of the trauma centre building. The hospital staff informed that an iron grill that covered the window of the toilet was found removed. “We assume that he jumped off the window after removing its grill,” said a hospital staff.

The doctors at AIIMS claimed that the journalist was having hallucinations for the past one week. They also claimed that he was in depression.

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India

SC sets aside Delhi HC order for Gautam Navlakha transfer record

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing Navlakha, contended that the High Court did not grant bail or any other relief, and instead, simply asked the officer concerned to file an affidavit.

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Gautam Navlakha

New Delhi, July 6 : The Supreme Court has set aside the Delhi High Court order, directing the NIA investigating officer to produce the entire set of records in connection with the production warrant and extension of social activist Gautam Navlakha’s judicial remand in the Bhima Koregaon case.

Allowing the NIA appeal, a bench of Justices Arun Mishra, Navin Sinha and Indira Banerjee passed directions to expunge the remarks made by the Delhi High Court against the NIA during the hearing of Navlakha”s bail plea. The NIA had moved the top court, challenging the High Court”s May direction, which made a prima facie observation that the investigating agency acted in haste to move out him from the jurisdiction of the Delhi court.

The top court noted that the Delhi High Court should not have entertained the interim bail plea of Navlakha in the case, as the matter falls under the jurisdiction of the Bombay High Court.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the Centre, contended before the top court that Navlakha”s surrender happened in pursuance with the top court order while Delhi was under lockdown. Later, the NIA moved the special court in Mumbai to request issuance of a production warrant as Navlakha was in judicial custody in Tihar jail, added Mehta.

He submitted that Navlakha was produced before the special court in Mumbai, based on the production warrant and the Delhi High Court was informed about it.

Navlakha was taken to Mumbai after lifting of the lockdown, added Mehta.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing Navlakha, contended that the High Court did not grant bail or any other relief, and instead, simply asked the officer concerned to file an affidavit.

Reiterating that the Delhi High Court should not have entertained this matter, the bench told Sibal that he could have come to this court or moved the NIA court in Mumbai.

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Jamia case: SG Tushar Mehta turns ‘shaayar’, quotes Ghalib during HC hearing

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Tushar Mehta

New Delhi, July 6 : A serious hearing before the Delhi High Court was punctuated by a rare instance of poetic brilliance when Solicitor General Tushar Mehta turned “shaayar” (poet) and took refuge in a couplet by famous Urdu poet Mirza Ghalib on Monday.

“Qasid ke aate aate khat ek aur likh rakhoon. Main janta hun jo woh likhenge jawab mein (I can write another letter before the arrival of the postman as I am aware of the response it will be fetching),” recited Mehta while the court was hearing a batch of matters relating to the violence that broke out in and around Jamia Millia Islamia last year.

A Division Bench presided by Chief Justice D.N. Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan was hearing the matter through video conferencing.

Mehta quoted Ghalib after senior advocate Salman Khurshid, appearing for the petitioner, told the bench that the solicitor General is big fan of Urdu poetry and has an immense collection of the same. It was a rare a light moment when Khurshid made the gesture and Mehta obliged.

The Solicitor General also said: “Just like Ghalib, I will keep my issues for the consideration of this court concise and short.”

During the course of the hearing, Mehta also raised objections over some statements made in the petitions and told the Delhi High Court that such statements are “more of a political nature which are being made at a protest site” and “not a pleading before a court”.

The objections were raised over the allegations in one of the petitions which stated that “the Home minister directed that you (police) mercilessly beat the students and break their bones”.

“This is more of a political statement being made at a protest site and not a pleading before a court,” SG Tushar Mehta said while seeking deletion of certain language being used in the petition relating to the violence that broke out in and around the Jamia Millia Islamia in December last year.

The court has now posted the matter for further hearing on July 13.

In a violent confrontation between the police and anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protesters on December 15 last year, petrol bombs were targeted at police personnel, ordinary citizens and the media as a raging mob seized parts of south Delhi nd refused to let go. .

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