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President Rule imposed in Maharashtra

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Ram Nath Kovind

Mumbai: PresidentRule has been imposed in Maharashtra after Governor Koshyari submitted his report to the President recommending President’s rule.

The President has approved President Rule in Maharashtra, according to media reports.

The President gave its assent after the Ministry of Home Affairs has sent the file on Governor’s recommendation to impose President’s Rule in the state to him.

On Sunday, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) announced it would not form government in Maharashtra in view of the its ally Shiv Sena’s stand to not join them in the efforts.

In the 288-member Assembly, the BJP emerged as the single largest party winning 105 seats, and along with its pre-poll alliance partner Shiv Sena was in a comfortable position to form government. The Shiv Sena, however, with 56 members refused to join the BJP in forming a government, insisting on rotational chief ministership.

The Shiv Sena has since been trying to form government on its own with the help of the Congress and the NCP, which had won 44 and 54 seats respectively.

Koshyari invited the BJP first to form the government on Saturday, but after the saffron party said it was not in a position to show majority, he invited Shiv Sena to form government on Sunday. The Shiv Sena, however, could not present support of adequate number of MLAs during their 24-hour time period.

Subsequently, Koshyari invited NCP to form the government in the state on Monday evening giving a deadline of 8 p.m. on Tuesday to demonstrate its support.

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Nine members of two families commit suicide in Tamil Nadu

Prior to his death, Arunkumar sent a WhatsApp message to his friends about the reasons for taking the extreme decision.

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Chennai, Dec 13 : Nine members of two different families in Tamil Nadu’s Villupuram and Dindigul districts committed suicide, police said.

According to the police, Villupuram district resident M. Arunkumar and his family members consisting of wife Sivagami, daughters Yuvashri (3), Priyadarshini (5) and three-month-old infant Bharathi died after consuming poison.

Police said, Arunkumar had incurred debt in his business and had also invested heavily in the banned lottery in the state to recoup his business losses.

Arunkumar and his wife decided to commit suicide after he lost a huge amount of money in the lottery also.

On Thursday night, after poisoning their children, the couple also consumed the poison and died.

Prior to his death, Arunkumar sent a WhatsApp message to his friends about the reasons for taking the extreme decision.

In the Dindigul district, four members of a family jumped before a running train near the Kodai Road Railway Station on Friday, police said.

The police were investigating the reasons for the suicide.

The four deceased were identified as Uthirapathi, Sangeetha, Abhinaya Shree and Akash. All hailed from Truchirappalli.

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Andhra Assembly passes Bill for death to rapists

It prescribes life imprisonment for other sexual offences against children and for this news sections 354 F and 354 G will be added to the IPC.

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Judiciary Court

Amaravati, Dec 13 : Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly on Friday unanimously passed two Bills, providing death penalty for rapists in cases where there is conclusive evidence and for stringent punishment in cases of other sexual offences against women and children.

The Andhra Pradesh Disha Bill-Criminal Law (Andhra Pradesh Amendment) Bill 2019 amending the India Penal Code, says that all cases regarding offences against women will be investigated and tried expeditiously with provisions of death penalty.

The judgment period has been reduced to 21 days from four months prescribed under Nirbhaya Act, 2013 and Criminal Amendment Act, 2018.

Under the Bill passed on Friday, the investigation will be completed in seven working days and trial completed in 14 working days.

The Bill is named after Disha, as the victim in the recent gang-rape and murder case of Hyderabad was called by the police to protect her identity.

Andhra Pradesh became first state in the country to come with such a Bill in the wake of the national outrage over Hyderabad veterinarian’s rape and murder.

Chief Minister Y. S Jagan Mohan Reddy told the Assembly that Disha Bill is in the concurrent list of State and Centre and it will be sent for President’s assent.

Reddy noted that in Nirbhaya Case the culprits are yet to be punished. He said outcry the recent Disha case received was considered before drafting the Bills.

He was apparently referring to many people hailing the killing of all four accused in an “encounter” by the police on December 6, nearly 10 days after they allegedly committed the gruesome crime.

“The government of Andhra Pradesh has prescribed exclusively death penalty for rape crimes where adequate conclusive evidence is there. No other options are provided. The provision is given by amending Section 376 of Indian Penal Code, 1860,” the government said, calling the Bill historic.

The Andhra Pradesh Disha Bill-Andhra Pradesh Special Court for Specified Offences against Women and Children Bill, 2019 will enable the state government to set up exclusive special courts for speedy trial of specified offences against women and children.

It prescribes life imprisonment for other sexual offences against children and for this news sections 354 F and 354 G will be added to the IPC.

In cases of harassment of women through social or digital media, the Bill prescribed two years of imprisonment for the first conviction and four years for second and subsequent convictions. For this Section 354 E will be inserted in the IPC.

To ensure speedy trial, the state will set up exclusive special courts in all the 13 districts to deal with cases of offences against women and children including rape, acid attacks, stalking, voyeurism, social media harassment of women, sexual harassment and all cases under POCSO Act.

The state will also employ special public prosecutors and special police force dedicated for such crimes only.

A Women and Children Offenders Registry will be maintained and will be in public domain and available to law enforcement agencies.

Home Minister Mekathoti Sucharitha said even in cases of sexual assault on children, the judgment period has been reduced from one year to 21 days.

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Ratul Puri gets bail in MoserBaer fraud case

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Ratul Puri

New Delhi: Delhi Court on Friday grants bail to bizman Ratul Puri in the MoserBaer money laundering case.

While granting the bail, Special CBI Judge Sanjay Garg directed Puri to furnish a bail bond of Rs 5 lakh and two sureties of like amount.

Puri has also been asked not to tamper with the evidences, influence the witnesses and cooperate in the investigation.

Puri, who will be released from the jail on Friday, was granted bail earlier in December in AgustaWestland deal case also.

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