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President can be wrong, Says Uttarakhand High Court to Centre

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During a hearing on the imposition of President’s rule in the hill state, the Uttarakhand High Court on Wednesday observed that President’s ruling is not above judicial review and told the ruling dispensation that even the President can go wrong.

The Centre on Wednesday claimed that the court cannot challenge the President’s assent which led to a sharp observation from the judges.

As additional solicitor general Tushar Mehta defended President’s Rule, the court said the case can be re-examined as there is ‘no king or absolutism’.

“There is no such decision like that of the king which can’t be subject to judicial review, that’s the essence of our Constitution. Even President can go wrong, everything is subject to judicial review. You should rejoice at the evolution we have had. We are not doubting wisdom of the President but everything is subject to judicial review. However high you may be, law is above you,” the HC said.

The court pointed out that the Governor in his report on March 25 report have clearly stated  that he was awaiting the floor test on 28. When the Additional Solicitor General argued “let us not screen these reports like a mathematical formula”, the court ruled “of course we have to because you say this was the material the President relied on”.

“How can it be said that the 35 MLAs would have voted against the government unless and until it is actually done,” the court asked on Tuesday. “What the speaker would do on March 27 could not have been divined by the cabinet on March 26. Assuming that they did divine, it was entirely irrelevant, for the central government to take that decision (to impose President’s rule) because then it would mean that the central government would be accused to be involved in politics,” the bench said.

 

On Tuesday, the HC had said that by imposing President’s Rule the Centre was taking away the powers of an elected government and introducing “chaos” and that floor test “cannot be deprived of its sanctity”.

The Uttarakhand High Court had  questioned the Centre’s move to impose President’s Rule in the state in the fifth year of the Congress Government.

“The Governor is not an agent of the Centre. This colours our mind. Can you remove a government based on a solitary incident and the government, which is in its fifth year? The root of the matter is you are cutting at root of democracy. Interference in the affairs of states is not to be seen lightly, emergency power should be used in extraordinary cases,” the court said.

The HC is hearing a petition by deposed chief minister Harish Rawat challenging the President’s Rule that was imposed on March 27, a day before Rawat was asked to prove his majority in an assembly floor test.

 

India

Virtual classes, empty rooms, Delhi’s coaching hub’s a ghost town now

In old Rajinder Nagar, there are more than 63 blocks which have more than 630 houses. There are approximately 7,560 rooms, where a large number of students used to stay.

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Delhi School Pollution Mask

New Delhi, July 4 : The national capital’s Rajinder Nagar is a buzzing locality of aspiring youngsters who come here to get coached for their future. They not only dot every length and breadth of the Delhi locality, but collectively drive the area”s economy. Today, with nearly 80 per cent of them gone, the area is not only wrapped in an eerie silence, but the areas economy too has dried up significantly.

Ask Rajat Sapra, who runs a dhaba in Old Rajinder Nagar that he fondly named ”Friend Restaurant”, and he will answer, “Previously, we used to have 100 to 150 students coming to eat everyday. Now, we are left with barely 20 per cent of the orders, including those that we get from online sales.”

He added, “Before the lockdown and particularly during Unlcok 1.0, most of them had gone back home. We have 50-60 dhabas in this locality. But we had more street vendors who would sell food here. None of them are here anymore.”

Empty streets, economy dried up and the buzz gone, Rajinder Nagar, which was known for the youth who stayed here, resembles a ghost town now.

Praveen, who preferred only to give his first name, coordinates the KSG Institute. Ask him the reason and pat he will answer, “From June 19, we started online classes. There used to be around 600 students who used to come for coaching. But now, all have shifted to online classes.”

The KSG Institute is not alone. There are approximately 50 coaching centres around the area that trains thousands of students for competitive exams like the Indian Administrative Service (IAS).

While the students going back haven”t hurt the coaching centres, but they have hurt the rest, including the real estate agents who broker rent deals for them.

Sahil Bachani, who owns one such outlet at Sad Guru Kirpa Properties, told IANS, “If you ask me, there”s not even 1,000 students left out of 5,000 students in the radius of 3.5 km.”

Another broker, Ashok Agarwal, said that students who left in a hurry before the lockdown returned during Unlock 1.0, only to take back their belongings and return home.

In old Rajinder Nagar, there are more than 63 blocks which have more than 630 houses. There are approximately 7,560 rooms, where a large number of students used to stay.

One broker claims, the collective loss in brokerage in the area comes to the tune of Rs 4 crore.

With libraries shut, vendors vanishing, classrooms which shifted to the online mode and minimal eateries opening, Rajinder Nagar is not just braving the loss of income, but is adjusting to a more silent, empty neighborhood that it hasn”t seen in decades.

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Business

Corona impact: CAIT demands de-sealing of Delhi shops

According to CAIT National Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal, estimates show that about 6,000 shops have been sealed in Delhi.

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DELHI LOCKDOWN

New Delhi, July 4 : The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) on Saturday demanded that shops in Delhi be de-sealed immediately without further delay.

Accordingly, in a letter to the Union Urban Development Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, CAIT demanded that “Delhi sealed shops should now be de -sealed immediately without further delay”.

Besides, the traders’ body also called for the finalisation of Delhi Rent Act, “ending a long running dispute between the land lords and tenants in Delhi”.

Furthermore, CAIT demanded that traders should be allowed to participate in the consultation process of Master Plan 2041 which is being prepared for Delhi.

According to CAIT National Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal, estimates show that about 6,000 shops have been sealed in Delhi.

“Corona started since the beginning of the year 2020 and the traders of Delhi are faced with a big crisis of livelihood and in such a situation, it has become imperative that shops are immediately de-sealed,” he was quoted as saying in a statement.

“Keeping this in view, the Central government should take an initiative in this matter and pass an ordinance in which all sealed shops should be opened and all other problems related to sealing should be postponed for the time being thereby giving all traders a fair chance to do business.”

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Cities

Out to catch dogs, NGO staff thrashed by locals

The police said that when the people from the NGO tried to flee from the spot in their car, 3 local residents were hit by their car, inflicting some minor injuries.

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Stray dogs

New Delhi, July 5 : The volunteers of an NGO, ”Neighbourhood Woof”, were thrashed by locals in Rani Bagh of outer Delhi.

The NGO workers, including a woman, were out in the area to catch dogs when the locals confronted them. In view of late night hours, local residents enquired about their identities on which heated argument started and a scuffle broke out between them. Later, the Delhi police registered a case against the residents on the complaint of the NGO worker.

On the night of July 3 at around 10.30 p.m., 3 PCR calls were received in Rani Bagh police station regarding a quarrel between two parties, i.e., one belonging to an NGO named “Neighbourhood Woof” and the local residents of Rishi Nagar, Rani Bagh. Immediately, the police reached the spot and it revealed that some persons from an NGO named “Neighbourhood Woof” had come to catch stray dogs in Rishi Nagar, said a senior police officer.

However, the locals grew suspicious and raised questions on the operation of the NGO staff which also had a woman with them. An argument started between the NGO workers and the local residents which soon turned ugly. The NGO workers alleged that they were brutally assaulted by the locals.

The police said that when the people from the NGO tried to flee from the spot in their car, 3 local residents were hit by their car, inflicting some minor injuries.

“On the complaint of the NGO worker Ayesha Christina, a case u/s 323/341/506/427/34 IPC has been registered against residents. Further investigation is under progress,” the police said.

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