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Fadnavis gets bail in election case

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Devendra Fadnavis
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Nagpur, Former Maharashtra Chief Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party’s Leader of Opposition Devendra Fadnavis on Thursday secured bail of Rs 15,000 in a criminal case in a complaint pertaining to non-disclosure of criminal cases against him in his election affidavit of 2014.

Chief Metropolitan Magistrate P.S. Ingle had given an ultimatum to Fadnavis who appeared and the matter has now been scheduled for next hearing on March 30.

The application was filed by lawyer-activist Satish Uke seeking criminal proceedings against Fadnavis for allegedly not disclosing the criminal cases lodged against him in the poll affidavit submitted to the Election Commission for the 2014 Assembly elections.

However, Fadnavis was granted exemption from personal appearance on four previous occasions, but finally appeared on Thursday amidst tight security deployed outside the court premises.

He was accompanied by his legal team of senior counsel Sunil Manohar and lawyer Uday Dabale, besides former minister Chandrashekhar Bawankule, MLC Parinay Fuke and a large number of his supporters and BJP activists.

Uke strongly opposed the bail granted to Fadnavis on grounds that he had skipped earlier hearings on various grounds and a precedence concerning Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

While granting bail, Ingle ordered Fadnavis to remain present at the next hearing and also as and when directed by the court in the matter.

“None of these cases are against me personally, but they are private ones related to fighting in public agitations for slum dwellers in 1995-1997,” Fadnavis later informed the media. He is a legislator elected from Nagpur South-West constituency.

India

FIR lodged against Editor of The Wire for derogatory remarks against UP CM

The FIR says that the Editor of the Wire wrote a blog in which he spread rumours and enmity in society. The FIR has been registered in the name of the Editor of The Wire.

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Yogi Adityanth

New Delhi, April 1 : An FIR has been registered on Wednesday against the Editor of digital media outlet, The Wire, for a blog about Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath which allegedly made derogatory remarks against the CM which spread hatred in the society.

The media advisor to UP Chief Minister, Mrityunjay Kumar, had earlier tweeted about the Wire blog responding to a tweet by the Editor of the Wire, Sidharth Vardarajan.

“Don’t try to spread lies. CM Yogi Adityanath has never said such a thing. Delete this immediately otherwise action will be taken on this and a defamation case will also be registered. Apart from running the website, you will have to seek donations for fighting the case also,” Kumar said.

He was responding to a tweet by Vardarajan in which the extract of the blog for which the FIR has been registered was enclosed.

The FIR was registered on Mondy by Nitish Kumar Shrivastav, the SHO of Kotwali Nagar in Ayodhya.

The FIR says that the Editor of the Wire wrote a blog in which he spread rumours and enmity in society. The FIR has been registered in the name of the Editor of The Wire.

“On the day the Tablighi Jamaat event was held, Yogi Adityanath insisted that a large fair planned for Ayodhya on the occasion of Ram Navami from March 25 to April 2 would proceed as usual while Acharya Paramhans said that Lord Ram would protect devotees from the coronavirus. One day after Modi announced the curfew like lockdown on March 24, Adityanath violated the official guidelines to take part in a religious ceremony in Ayodhya along with dozens of people,” he wrote in the blog.

The FIR said that at the time of the coronavirus pandemic when the entire country is under lockdown and Section 144 is imposed in the district, the Editor of The Wire was making derogatory remarks against the UP Chief Minister, which has led to great anger among the people.

This act is punishable under Section 188/505 (2) of the Indian Penal Code. It is directed that a FIR be registered on the directions of Nitish Kumar Shrivastav, SHO, Kotwali Nagar, Ayodhya, it stated.

In a statement issued on Wednesday evening, Varadarajan said that the FIR was politically motivated.

“I have come to know through social media that an FIR has been registered under Section 188 and 505(2) of the IPC against The Wire. A bare perusal of the FIR shows that it is politically motivated and the offences invoked are not even remotely made out. The registration of an FIR is a blatant attack on the freedom of the press,” he added.

He said the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh does not seem to have learnt anything despite the strictures passed against it by the Supreme Court in June 2019 when the court ordered the release of journalist Prashant Kanojia whom the state had illegally arrested. The right to liberty is a fundamental right and non-negotiable, the court had said.

“What the FIR says I have stated — that Chief Minister Adityanath attended a public religious event in Ayodhya on March 25 after the Prime Minister had announced a national lockdown — is a matter of record,” Varadarajan added.

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India

Sonia Gandhi sets up control room on COVID-19

As a countrywide lockdown has been imposed, the state units were advised to ask the state governments to issue passes for party workers for distribution of food and medicine kits.

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Sonia Gandhi

New Delhi, March 30 : Congress interim President Sonia Gandhi has set up a control room on COVID-19 and to coordinate with state organisations to step up humanitarian help.

A release from KC Venugopal said “Congress President, Smt Sonia Gandhi has approved the setting up of a a Central Control Room’ at AICC, comprising ,Rajiv Satav, MP , Devendra Yadav, Ex MLA, and Manish Chatrath, Secretary, AICC for the purpose of coordinating all COVID2019, related matters. “

The party said that state committees will update the Central Control Room on a daily basis on the ground situation on the spread of the virus, the medical preparedness of the state governments as also the relief work being undertaken by the party and state agencies.

“The Control Room will function under the overall guidance and supervision of Shri KC Venugopal, General Secretary (Organization), AICC.” said the release.

The setting up of the control room was suggested by state leaders in Delhi on Saturday to coordinate efforts with the states, and “also stressed upon and suggested that Congress President and Ex-President need to interact with the party workers and the general public on a regular basis,” the statement issued by AICC said.

As a countrywide lockdown has been imposed, the state units were advised to ask the state governments to issue passes for party workers for distribution of food and medicine kits.

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Ease process of certification for maximum testing kits: Congress

He also slammed the government over the handling of the migrant labourers in Uttar Pradesh’s Bareilly and described it as “unfortunate and inhuman”.

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Manish Tewari

New Delhi, March 31 : Congress on Tuesday said that the India was inching closer to reach to stage three of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and asked the government to ease the process of certification to get maximum number of testing kits without compromising quality.

Addressing media through video conferencing, Congress MP and spokesperson Manish Tewari said, “We are progressing towards phase three and the only way to deal better with it is to conduct as many tests as possible.”

He said, if we take the India’s ratio for coronavirus testing, it is the lowest in the world.

He said, “In India only 32 people are being tested out of 10 lakh people, while in UK it is 921 per 10 lakh people and in US it is 2,600 per 10 lakh people.”

Tewari said that World Health Organisation (WHO) in its advisory has also issued an advisory and they are also emphasising on the need for conducting more tests. “The only antidote to COVID-19 spreading is more testing,” he said.

Pointing out that only four companies have been allowed to manufacture the testing kits, Tewari said, “I want to demand from the government that only four companies have got the permission to manufacture testing kits while 17 companies applied for testing kits but were asked to bring the FDA or EU approval.

“It is not easy to get FDA or EU approval in the current scenario and hence we request the government to come up with a plan to get maximum number of testing kits without compromising quality and make the same available across India,” the Congress leader said.

He also cited the scarcity of the testing kits in India and said that the the state governments do not have much of the testing kits and they have kept the testing kits for emergency time. “And this is a wise strategy to deal with the situation in a targeted way,” he said.

He also slammed the government over the handling of the migrant labourers in Uttar Pradesh’s Bareilly and described it as “unfortunate and inhuman”.

“What happened in Bareilly yesterday, the way in which they were sprayed with the chemical is a inhuman act and this once again shows that the difference between India and Bharat,” Tewari said.

He said the incident differentiates India which watches Netflix and Bharat where a father walks with his wife and carries his daughter and travel hundred of miles to return home.

“The government should ensure the safe return of the people who are on streets. I had also written to the Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday on how we can take steps to ensure the safe return of these people,” he said.

The Congress also demanded Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman to ensure that the RBI circular regarding EMIs (being deferred for three months) should be issued widely and that interest subvention arrangement should be made for the interest on the deferred EMI payments.

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