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Jammu & Kashmir : GST likely to be implemented from Friday midnight




Srinagar, July 7:  Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime is likely to be implemented in Jammu and Kashmir from Friday midnight ending all confusion and speculations on whether the state would become part of the ‘one country, one tax’ system.

The presidential order extending Amendment 101 to the state was received here earlier on Friday.

Following this, the state assembly in session took up the Jammu and Kashmir State-GST Bill for discussion and adoption.

State Finance Minister Haseeb Drabu said: “It will be a special GST, but not a separate GST.”

“It will protect the autonomy we have and strengthen it further.”

A Raj Bhawan spokesman said: “The presidential order contains safeguards to maintain the special status of the state and the legislative powers under the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir.”

After the bill is passed by the state legislature, the State-GST Act 2017 would come into force and Jammu and Kashmir would become part of the GST regime like the rest of the country.

Opposition National Conference boycotted the assembly session calling the passing of the GST resolution on July 5 “a sham”.

Independent MLAs also abstained in protest.

Congress legislators, however, attended the session, but later walked out.


Asaram rape case: ‘Self-styled Godman’ gets life imprisonment



Asaram Bapu

New Delhi, April 25: Self-styled godman Asaram Bapu has been Asaraam sentenced to life imprisonment by Jodhpur Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe Court for raping a 16-year-old girl at his ashram in 2013.

Special Judge Madhusudhan Sharma delivered the verdict in which three accused including Asaram convicted, two other accused acquitted by in connection with the rape case.

The court awarded 20 years in jail each to Asaram’s warden Shilpi and associate Sharad.

However, the court acquitted Asaram’s ‘sevadar’ Shiva and cook Prakash.

“Asaram has been sentenced to life imprisonment till natural death… Shilpi and Sharad have also been directed to pay Rs one lakh fine each,” defence lawyer Sushma Dhara stated.

The 474-page judgment said, “the 77-year-old godman and two others were convicted under Section 376D of the Indian Penal Code, the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Pocso) Act and the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Act”.

Minutes after the verdict, Asaram spokesperson, Neelam Dubey said “We will discuss with our legal team and then decide our future course of action. We have confidence in our judiciary.

Following the directions of the Rajasthan High Court, the trial court pronounced its verdict in Jodhpur Central Jail premises.


Rest of two accused Shilpi, Sharad sentenced to 20 years jail term

Asaram gets life imprisonment

We have got justice. I want to thank everyone who supported us in this fight, says Victim’s Father 

Asaram is convicted, we have got justice. I want to thank everyone who supported us in this fight. Now I hope he will get strict punishment. I also hope the witnesses who were murdered or kidnapped get justice, said Father of the victim.

Jodhpur Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe Court convicts three accussed including Asaram and acquits two other accused

Visuals from Ahmedabad

To ensure law and order is maintained following the verdict, additional forces have been are deployed in three states — Rajasthan, Haryana and Gujarat.

Rapists like Asaram should be hanged, says Mahendra Chawla, a witness in the case

Trust judiciary and am confident that Asaram will be convicted. I request judiciary that such rapists should be hanged. Though I have security, I request Centre for additional security, my life like other witnesses is constantly under threat, news agency ANI quoted Mahendra Chawla as saying.

Delhi police on high alert 

The Delhi Police is also on high alert today in the wake of the verdict. A senior official says the cops have been given instructions in case followers of Asaram Bapu gather post-judgment. “We are in touch with police forces from neighbouring states to avert any untoward incident. Senior officers from districts and SHOs of police stations concerned have been directed to keep a watch in their respective areas,” he is quoted as saying by PTI.

Security tightened at Jodhpur jail ahead of Asaram Bapu’s case verdict

In Jodhpur, where the verdict will be delivered, authorities imposed Section 144.

Supporters of Asaram offer prayers 

On April 7, the final arguments in the case had been concluded by the special court for SC/ST cases and the court had kept the order reserved to be pronounced on April 25.

Asaram was held on the complaint filed by a teenage girl from Uttar Pradesh’s Shahajahanpur.

The victim, who was studying at Asaram’s ashram at Chhindwara in Madhya Pradesh, had alleged that the godman had called her to his ashram in Manai and raped her on the night of August 15, 2013.

Asaram was nabbed from Indore and brought to Jodhpur on September 1, 2013. The godman is in judicial custody since September 2, 2013.

A charge sheet against Asaram and four other co-accused namely Shiva, Shilpi, Sharad and Prakash had been filed by police on November 6, 2013, under various sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO), Juvenile Justice Act and Indian Penal Code.

The trial of the case had started in the district and session court on March 19, 2017, later it had been shifted to the special court for SC/ST cases on December 16, 2016.


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BJP leaders top the list in hate speech related cases: ADR Report



New Delhi, April 25: According to the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and National Election Watch (NEW) report on a total of 58 MPs and MLAs have declared cases related to hate speech.

The ADR and NEW came up with this observation after analyzing the self- sworn affidavits of all sitting parliamentarians, News Agency ANI reported.

The analysis reveals that many of the MPs and MLAs, who are designated lawmakers have actually declared cases related to ‘hate speech’ against themselves.

The observation was based on the affidavits submitted by the candidates and MPs and MLAs ahead of the last election they contested.

According to the report,15 sitting Lok Sabha MPs have declared cases related to hate speech against themselves. While none of the Rajya Sabha MPs has been involved in hate speech relates case.

Among various renkowned parties, 10 sitting Lok Sabha MPs with declared cases related to hate speech are from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and others are from the All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF), Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) and All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM).

“BJP has 27 MPs, MLAs with such cases, All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) has 6, TRS (6), TDP (3), SHS (3), AITC (2), INC (2), IND (2), JD(U) (2), AIUDF (1), BSP (1), DMK (1), PMK (1) and SP (1)”, the ADR report added.

Among the states, 11 sitting MLAs with declared cases related to the same case are from Telangana, four MLAs are from Bihar, nine MLAs are from Uttar Pradesh, four from Maharashtra, three each from Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, while two each from Uttarakhand and West Bengal and one MLA each from Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan and Jharkhand have declared cases related to hate speech against themselves”, the report said.

The party leaders with declared cases connecting to the same are Asaduddin Owaisi (AIMIM) and Badruddin Ajmal (AIUDF) and Union Minister Uma Bharti. There are eight state ministers who have also declared cases related to hate speech.

In the last 5 years, 198 candidates with declared cases have contested polls for State Assemblies, Lok and Rajya Sabha.

Besides this, 141 candidates from recognized political parties and 29 candidates from unrecognized political parties have given ticked to such type of candidates and 28 independent candidates with declared cases related to Hate Speech have contested the elections for State Assemblies, Lok and Rajya Sabha.

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GSAT-11 called back for tests to be on the safe side: ISRO Chairman




Chennai, April 25 (IANS) The Indian space agency has recalled its communication satellite GSAT-11 from Arianespace’s rocket port in French Guiana for further tests, to be on the safe side, said Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chairman K. Sivan on Wednesday.

“We are bringing back the GSAT-11 satellite to carry out some tests to be doubly sure of its performance orbiting in the space. There is nothing more to it,” Sivan told IANS.

He said the satellite is expected to be back in India on April 5 or 6, and after the tests and checks, GSAT-11 can be back in Ariancespace’s rocket port in Kourou.

“Due to additional technical checks with the Indian Space Research Organisation’s GSAT-11 satellite, to be conducted from the ISRO Satellite Centre (ISAC) located in Bengaluru, the Ariane 5 launch initially planned for May 25, VA243, has been postponed,” Arianespace had said.

The GSAT-11 was planned to be launched mid May. The satellite had reached Arianespace’s rocket port in March.

GSAT-11 was designed, assembled and integrated by the ISRO, and will have an estimated lift-off mass of 5,870 kg.

This advanced communications satellite is to provide multi-spot beam coverage over the Indian mainland and nearby islands, bringing significant advantages to the user community when compared with India’s existing INSAT/GSAT satellite systems, Arianespace said earlier in a statement.

With its new system architecture and cutting-edge technology elements, GSAT-11 will generate a capacity of more than 12 Gbps for users from a single platform, the statement added.

The ISRO’s move to call back GSAT-11 for further tests and be doubly sure of its performance may be due to the loss of the recently launched GSAT-6A satellite, soon after it was put into orbit on March 29.

ISRO suspects the failure of the power systems in the satellite for the loss of communication link.

“The satellites are powered by solar panels that charge the onboard batteries. The batteries are fully charged when the satellite is loaded on to the rocket.

“Even if there is a problem with the solar panel, then the battery power should have kicked in. Here the entire power system of the satellite seems to have failed,” one space expert told IANS earlier.

According to experts, the power system could have failed due to some short circuiting or arcing resulting in what is known in the space terminology ‘loss of lock’ or loss of contact with the ground station.

Satellites in space are locked to ground stations for tracking and other purposes.

On March 29, Indian rocket Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) slung GSAT-6A in its intended orbit. From there the satellite was to be taken up further to its orbital slot by firing its onboard motors.

The first orbit raising operation was successfully carried out by firing the onboard motors for around 36 minutes on March 30 morning.

The second orbit raising operation of GSAT-6A satellite was also successful as its motors was fired for about 53 minutes on March 31.

After that, the communication link got snapped.

Industry experts also said there has been instances where communication link with satellites got reestablished after a break of couple of days.


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