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Prayagraj (UP), March 17 : A Public Interest Litigation (PIL) has been filed in the Allahabad High Court seeking suspension of or a stay against an ordinance brought by the Yogi Adityanath government for recovering damages to public and private property during protests, bandhs or riots such as those incidents witnessed during anti-CAA protests in the state.

The plea was filed by lawyer Shashank Tripathi on Tuesday, urging the court to issue a writ or direction declaring the ordinance ‘ultra vires’ to the Constitution.

Tripathi in the plea has referred to the questions asked by the HC and the Supreme Court in the ‘name and shame’ hoardings episode.

“To evade from justifying itself from court of law, the State has played mischief upon the Constitution,” he argued.

The state government on Sunday notified the “Uttar Pradesh Recovery of Damage to Public and Private Property Ordinance, 2020”, promulgated by Governor Anandiben Patel.

The state cabinet on Friday had cleared the ordinance.

The PIL says the ordinance under question is in contradiction with the ordinance-making power of the state provided under Article 213 of Constitution.

The ordinance talks about judicial activity, but without procedural and functional safeguard required by law, the plea says.

The Uttar Pradesh government will use the stringent new law to recover compensation from those who damage public and private property during protests and riots.

Claims for compensation will now be decided by designated ‘Claims Tribunals’ that will be authorized to investigate complaints and assess the damage.

As per the ordinance, the owner of any private property or the head of the office concerned, in respect of public property, may file claims for compensation within three months of any incident that causes any damage during public protests, bandhs or riots. The claim can cite as respondents those who “exhort” or “instigate” or “committed” acts that caused the damage, as well as those named by the police.

Every order or award passed by the Claims Tribunal would be “final” and no appeal against such orders would be “maintainable” before any court. Also, no civil court will have the jurisdiction to entertain any questions on the claims.

India

Where’s the Rs 20-lakh-crore package: MPYC to PM Modi

“My only question to the PM is – Modiji, who exactly got the Rs 20 lakh-crore?” Tambe demanded.

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Modi PM

Mumbai, Aug 14 : Attempting to corner the Centre on the eve of Independence Day on Saturday, the Maharashtra Pradesh Youth Congress on Friday sought to know from Prime Minister Narendra Modi who has actually benefited from the Rs 20-lakh-crore assistance package announced four months ago.

Leading a MPYC agitation, the party President Satyajeet Tambe said the PM insists that a Rs 20 lakh-crore economic package was given to farmers, entrepreneurs and jobless, but he claimed that MPYC has yet to find “a single individual” who has benefitted from it.

“My only question to the PM is – Modiji, who exactly got the Rs 20 lakh-crore?” Tambe demanded.

He said that fact-finding teams of the MPYC workers and activists have been trying to find out the intended stakeholders of the “astronomical figure”, not a single one has been found who has so far received the promised aid.

The teams found that no farmers, unemployed persons, traders, shopkeepers or factories and MSMEs who joined the survey have recorded their testimonies and express the same disillusionment across critical sectors of the economy.

“Because of the stark variance between the Prime Minister’s professions and the zero beneficiary reality on the ground, we at MPYC continue to apply to the Central Government for a breakdown of the COVID-19 assistance to Maharashtra,” said Tambe.

He said the “BJP’s silence and thuggery is symptomatic of the elite capture and the cronyism that is Modi’s Operandi” even as the economy is on the ventilator, threatening to flatten as unemployment takes a serious turn.

Tambe also asked BJP’s three Members of Parliament from Mumbai to account for the actual money received by socio-economically marginalised people in Maharashtra from the Centre’s Rs. 20 Lakh Crore COVID-19 Economic Assistance Package, even as the Opposition termed the MPYC agitation as “a total failure”.

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India

‘Apologise with folded hands on TV’: Shiv Sena to Arnab Goswami

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Arnab Goswami

Nagpur, Aug 14 : Taking umbrage at “insults and humiliations” meted out during its debates on the issue of actor Sushant Singh Rajput, a Shiv Sena leader on Friday demanded that Republic TV’s Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami should apologise with folded hands on TV or face criminal proceedings.

The Sena is the second party in the Maha Vikas Aghadi government, headed by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, to act against Goswami after the Congress filed criminal proceedings against him a couple of months ago for linking party chief Sonia Gandhi to the Palghar mob-lynching case.

Slapping a legal notice on Goswami, Vasantrao Naik Sheti Swavlamban Mission (VNSSM) President Kishore Tiwari, who is accorded Minister of State status, contended that the manner in which the debates are conducted on the channel were an attempt at “Contempt of the Supreme Court”.

The Sena leader – who is also a lawyer – said that despite his protests during the debate, Goswami continued his “wilful disobedience and contempt of court” and attempted to influence and interfere with the court proceedings, on the Sushant case.

“Once during the programme, you had gone one step more to term (Chief Minister) Uddhavji Thackeray as ‘prime accused’ of the (Sushant) case in your prejudged, perverse, biased and pre-determined style towards the Thackeray family,” said Tiwari.

He added that the entire style and approach of debates was “based on false, concocted stories and a prejudiced mindset in a predetermined way”, which, he held, is also contempt of the Supreme Court.

“These acts of yours and your team are highly unlawful and nothing but a case of criminal defamation, insult, public humiliation….” he said, citing the institution of a civil suit for infringement of fundamental rights guaranteed under the Constitution “caused in programmes on your channels – Republic TV and Republic Bharat”.

Tiwari also alleged Republic TV had targeted former Union Minister Sushma Swaraj, linking her with the Lalit Modi case, and she could not bear the shock, leading to the collapse of her immune system and finally, she succumbed to cancer in August last year.

In a similar manner, he alleged that Republic TV is targeting the Thackeray family to tarnish their image which is tantamount to sheer misuse of freedom of expression and media.

In the legal notice, Tiwari called upon Goswami to “apologise with folded hands” on his television during prime time and also publish the same apology in leading print publications.

Failing this, he has warned the Republic TV chief and his team of criminal and civil proceedings besides launching a separate case requesting the Supreme Court to initiate contempt proceedings as Goswami has “wilfully and mischievously” tried to influence the matter which is before the apex court.

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Politics

Congress cracks whip in Rajasthan

Gehlot further said, “We will move the confidence motion ourselves. We shall also resolve the grievances of our MLAs who are upset with us.”

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Pilot Venugopal Gehlot

New Delhi/Jaipur, Aug 14 : The Congress has tried to convey a tough message to its legislators in Rajasthan that the party comes first and there should be no statements and no interviews to the media from anyone.

The Congress Legislature Party meet was convened on Thursday at the Chief Minister’s residence where rival leaders Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and former Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot were present.

Congress General Secretary (Organisation) K.C. Venugopal said in a video that “Forget the nightmare of the last 30 days and work together for the people of Rajasthan. We have done a lot of post-mortem but from now on no words, no interviews and no statements. This is the message of Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi. They told me to convey this.”

Venugopal said that “the party has to come first and if the party is not there then nobody will be there so everybody has to work with unity. It is time for unity and everybody should work together.”

He also praised the state government for its work towards Covid management.

Gehlot and Pilot met before the CLP meeting at Gehlot’s house. At the meeting, Gehlot gave a call to forget the past, saying, “Apne to apne hote hain’. We could have proved the majority on the floor of the House even without these 19 MLAs, but then there would have been no happiness around.”

Gehlot further said, “We will move the confidence motion ourselves. We shall also resolve the grievances of our MLAs who are upset with us.”

The BJP on Thursday announced that it will move a no-confidence motion against the Gehlot government when the special Assembly session commences on Friday.

Venugopal, who was present at the meeting, tweeted: “There is no substitute for truth and integrity. The bonds of friendship & ideology are unbreakable, they will stand the test of time & reinvigorate the party. The direction & leadership of Hon’ble Congress President Sonia Gandhi & Rahul Gandhi ensured this bond gets stronger.”

Earlier in the day, suspension of two MLAs – Bhanwarlal Sharma and Vishvendra Singh, who had pledged loyalty to the Pilot camp, was revoked. They were suspended after being charged with alleged horse-trading to topple the government.

Gehlot also tweeted in the afternoon saying, “Our priority should be to save democracy with the feeling of forgive and forget. The conspiracy being followed in the states to topple the elected governments one by one in Karnataka, MP and Arunachal Pradesh by misusing the ED, CBI, Income Tax, judiciary etc. will weaken democracy.”

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