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Molestation Case: Punjab and Haryana High Court grants bail to Vikas Barala

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Vikas Barala
Vikas Barala (File Photo)

Punjab Haryana High Court court on Thursday granted bail to Haryana BJP chief Subhash Barala’s son Vikas Barala in the Varnika Kundu stalking case.

Both Vikas and his friends were arrested for allegedly stalking disc jockey Varnika Kundu, who is the daughter of a senior bureaucrat.

Accused have been charged under Section 365 (kidnapping or abduction with intent to confine person) and Section 511 (attempt to commit the offence punishable with life imprisonment) of the Indian Penal Code.

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Miscreant attacks JNU professor, gold ornaments looted

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Gurugram, Oct 23 : In a shocking incident, a 68-year-old JNU professor, who is still attached with the varsity after her retirement, was attacked at her residence by a miscreant, who decamped with a gold chain and bangles worth Rs 2.5 lakh, the police said on Friday.

According to the police, the victim, Manju Shree Chauhan, is a resident of Sushant Lok Phase 2-3. The woman is unmarried and lives alone at her flat.

“The incident took place on Thursday afternoon at around 3.15 pm when the woman was alone. The accused, who introduced himself as a courier boy, came to her flat and told the woman that there is a parcel in her name. He then asked for an ID proof, which she produced.

“As the iron gate was locked from inside, the person asked for her Aadhaar card, saying he could not see it properly. When she opened the gate, the person pushed her inside and hit her with a blunt object,” said Hari Singh Dhillon, a neighbour of the victim.

“Chauhan became unconscious after the attack. When she regained consciousness, she telephoned us at 3.53 pm and we immediately rushed to her flat. She was lying in a pool of blood in a semi-conscious state. I immediately called the police and took her to a private hospital, where she is undergoing treatment,” Dillon said.

“The unknown accused fled with the woman’s gold ornaments. We are scanning nearby CCTV footages to develop the indentity of the accused. A case in this regard has been registered at the Sector 56 police station. Further investigation is on,” said the investigation officer in the case.

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Bengaluru: Cinema theatres open – Dearth of audience hurts owners

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Bengaluru, Oct 24: The cinema theatres in the state had stopped operations seven months back because of coronavirus-induced lockdown enforced by the government. The theatres were allowed to operate from October 15 subject to certain conditions. Accordingly, films began to be screened in various towns and cities including this city.

During a week which went by thereafter, the audience response has been disheartening. The theatres have been waiting to receive the audience but the movie-goers seem to be keeping a distance from the theatres.

Films like ‘Love Mocktail’, ‘Shivaji Suratkal’, ‘Shivarjuna’, ‘Mayabazar 2016’ and ‘Kaanadanthe Maayavaadanu’ had been released in single screens and multiplexes during the last week. A few more films were added in between. More films are in the line to be screened in the coming week. The films that will be exhibited this week will be ‘Kurukshetra’, ‘KGF’, ‘Tagaru’, ‘Rajkumar’, ‘Kotigobba 3’, ‘Damayanthi”, ‘Diya’ and some more.

No audience: Even though many movies are getting released, there has not been any appreciable addition to the number of audiences as compared to last week. Most of the films are being released in multiplexes where only one or two shows have been arranged. There were cases in which a few shows were cancelled for want of audiences.

Old films a problem: Some exhibitors feel that the audience response has been better but not to the extent expected by them. They point out that the films being screened now are the old ones which have already been seen by the people on OTT and television. They feel that the audience response would have been far better if new films of stars were released.

President of Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce, K V Chandrashekhar, admits that the audience response so far has been lukewarm but expects the collections to increase once new films are released. Producer of ‘Shivarjuna’, Shivarjuna, says that his film was exhibited in 40 theatres in the first week and 20 more theatres have been added this week. He feels that with the release of new films, more and more audience will get attracted towards the theatres.

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Delhi High Court grants bail to Delhi riots accused Faizan Khan

Khan had allegedly supplied and activated a SIM card registered fraudulently in the name of one Abdul Jabbar, but actually used by the the Jamia Coordination Committee (JCC) headed by Jamia student Safoora Zargar.

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Faizan Delhi Violence

New Delhi, Oct 23 : The Delhi High Court on Friday granted bail to Faizan Khan, the man who supplied SIM card to Delhi riots accused and Jamia scholar Asif Iqbal Tanha, after observing that invocation of UAPA against him was based on nothing but “bald statements”.

“The material on record and the investigating agency’s status report do not disclose the commission of the offences under the UAPA, 1967, except the bald statements of the witnesses,” a single judge bench of the high court comprising Justice Suresh Kumar Kait noted while granting bail to Khan.

The bench also said that there is no proof on record such as CCTV footage, video clip or chat record of the petitioner with any of the group, except the allegation that he provided SIM card on a fake ID in December 2019 and took a small amount of Rs 200 for the same.

“It is not the case of the prosecution that he provided many SIM cards and continued to do the same. It is also not the case of the prosecution that he was part of any chat group or part of any group which conspired to commit offence as alleged in the present case,” the bench said.

The court, while granting bail to the petitioner, directed him to submit a personal bail bond of Rs 25,000 with one surety of the like amount. “I am of the view that the petitioner deserves bail,” the bench said.

The court noted that for invoking the UAPA against the petitioner, it is the duty of the investigating agency to demonstrate that the petitioner had “actual knowledge” that the said SIM card would be used for organising protests.

“It was imperative for the investigating agency to demonstrate that the petitioner had ‘active knowledge’ about the utilisation of the said SIM card. It is not alleged that the petitioner was party to any such conspiracy to organise protests,” the bench said.

The court also observed that the petitioner voluntarily appeared before the agency for questioning and did not evade or flee between the period of registration of the FIR (March 6) and the date of his arrest (July 29).

“This is material fact shows that the petitioner has fully cooperated with the probe and had made himself available as and when directed by the investigating agency,” the bench noted.

The court also directed that the petitioner shall not directly or indirectly influence any witness or tamper with the evidence.

“The trial court shall not get influenced by the observation made by this court while passing the order in the present petition,” it said.

Khan was arrested by the Delhi Police on July 29 on charges of being part of the conspiracy hatched by Umar Khalid and his associates to organise the riots in north-east Delhi during the visit of US President Donald Trump in February 2020.

Khan had allegedly supplied and activated a SIM card registered fraudulently in the name of one Abdul Jabbar, but actually used by the the Jamia Coordination Committee (JCC) headed by Jamia student Safoora Zargar.

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