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SC to hear plea against new cattle sale rules on June 15

Hearing counsel Sanobar Ali Qureshi, appearing for the Hyderabad-based petitioner, a vacation bench of Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice Deepak Gupta listed the matter for hearing on June 15.



Supreme Court

New Delhi, June 7: The Supreme Court on Wednesday said it will hear, on June 15, a plea challenging the Central government notification prohibiting sale and purchase of cattle at animal markets for slaughter on the grounds that it violates the right to free trade.

Petitioner Mohammed Abdul Faheem Qureshi has also challenged the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Care and Maintenance of Case Property Animals) Rules, 2017 which deals with the seizures, recovery of the cost of transportation, maintenance and treatment of seized animals.

Hearing counsel Sanobar Ali Qureshi, appearing for the Hyderabad-based petitioner, a vacation bench of Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice Deepak Gupta listed the matter for hearing on June 15.

Faheem Qureshi, who is himself a lawyer, contended that the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules, 2017, which bans sale of cattle for slaughter and restricts cattle trade to farm owners, is arbitrary, illegal, and unconstitutional.

He argued that the rules violate his constitutional rights to practise any profession or to carry on any occupation, protection of life and personal liberty, freedom of conscience and free profession, practice and propagation of religion and protection of interests of minorities.

Challenging different stipulations of two notifications that came on May 23, Sanobar Qureshi said the rule that the purchaser “shall not sacrifice the animal for any religious purpose” was contrary to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960, whose Section 28 says it is not an offence to “kill any animal in a manner required by the religion of any community”.

Meanwhile, the petitioner, who also heads the All India Jamiatul Quresh Action Committee, also attacked the stipulation which prohibits bringing young cattle to animal market, unless the purchaser furnishes an undertaking saying he is an agriculturist, that the animal would be used for agricultural purposes, and not resold for six months.

He also argued that its provision holding a first-time offender should be deprived of the animal’s ownership violates the 1960 law’s Section 29 which says that no person would be deprived of his animals unless he has been previously convicted under the Act or it is shown that his character, or record of treatment of animals makes him unfit.

Qureshi also objected to the provision of the notification requiring the owner to submit a bond to pay for the transportation, maintenance and treatment of the cattle.



Would not let any political party join me, says Anna Hazare



New Delhi, March 24:  Social activist Anna Hazare, who is on indefinite hunger strike, said that he would not let any political party join him.

Speaking to ANI, anti-corruption crusader said that whoever will join the movement with him, has to sign an affidavit stating that they’ll neither join any political party or group nor will participate in elections.

“Whoever joins the movement, signs affidavit which states, that they’ll neither join any political party or group nor will contest elections, ensure service to country, society and maintain good character. I’ll not let any political party or group come on this stage,” Hazare asserted.

Hazare began his indefinite fast at Ramlila Ground on Friday in a bid to bring about a competent Lokpal and ensure better production cost for farm produce.

The Gandhian has been pressing for setting up of the Lokpal at the Narendra Modi government and Lokayuktas in the states, besides implementation of the Swaminathan Commission report, which has recommended measures to meet the agrarian distress.


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CBI books two cases in Rs 539-crore IDBI fraud in Andhra, Telangana



CBI raids

Hyderabad, March 24: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has booked 41 persons including three officials of the Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI) for cheating the bank to the tune of Rs 539 crore in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

The federal agency registered two separate cases relating to large-scale frauds in IDBI branches in the two states in sanctioning pisciculture loans.

In the first case, 31 persons including IDBI’s General Manager Battu Rama Rao and former Chief General Manager R. Damodaran, 22 aggregators and bank panel valuers were booked for cheating the bank to the tune of Rs 445.32 crores. Rama Rao has also been removed from the service.

The central agency booked the accused on charges of criminal conspiracy, cheating, forgery, criminal misconduct and misappropriation.

The action came after a complaint by IDBI official in Hyderabad that about 220 borrowers, consisting of 22 aggregators, conspired with IDBI bank officials at its Basheerbagh (Hyderabad) and Siripuram (Visakhapatnam) branches, along with bank panel valuers, and availed Kisan Credit Card (KCC) and pisciculture loans through 220 loan accounts from different branches of the bank aggregating Rs 198.28 crore

The loans, which were availed on the basis of fake documents and overvalued collateral property, subsequently become NPA. The outstanding amount as on September 2017 stood at Rs 445.32.

It was found that pisciculture or no other fish farming activity was ever taken up in the said lands in East and West Godavari and Krishna districts of Andhra Pradesh and Adilabad district in Telangana and that sanctioned loans were misappropriated.

Bank panel valuers Lt. Col. B.K. Sahoo, Aakar Consulting Engineers, R.A. Sharma, M.V. Srinivasulu, Subha Syndicate, Srinivasa Rau and Somasekhara Rao were among those booked.

In the second case, the CBI booked a IDBI official and nine others for defrauding the bank to the tune of Rs 93.73 crore.

Chandrasekhar Harish Chennapagari, who was working as Assistant General Manager at Guntur branch of IDBI, allegedly abused his official position to process and sanction 142 pisciculture loans from 2010 to 2012. He has been removed from service by the IDBI.

Investigations revealed that the loans were sanctioned on the basis of fake documents. The accused include a bank panel valuer, a bank panel advocate, aggregators and individual borrowers.


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PNB Scam: ED attaches Nirav Modi’s properties worth Rs 25 cr



New Delhi, March 24: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Saturday said that it has attached properties worth Rs 25 crore of diamond jeweller Nirav Modi in connection with its ongoing probe into the Rs 13,540 crore PNB fraud case.

An ED official told IANS that the searches were carried out on Thursday at Nirav Modi’s palatial residence ‘Samudra Mahal’ in Mumbai along with a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) team.

The official also said that the searches continued till Saturday morning and resulted in the seizure of antique jewellery worth Rs 15 crore, high-end watches valued at Rs 1.40 crore and paintings worth Rs 10 crore that includes artworks by M.F. Hussain, K.K. Hebbar, Amrita Shergil.

The ED also attached a diamond ring valued at Rs 10 crore.

The financial probe agency’s action comes after it registered a separate case against the diamond jeweller and his uncle Mehul Choksi of the Gitanjali Group for defrauding the banks to the tune of Rs 13,540 crore.

Till date, the ED has carried out searches at over 251 properties across the country and seized diamond, gold, precious and semi precious stones, pearls.

The ED has also attached immovable properties belonging to Nirav Modi Group and Mehul Choksi group to the tune of Rs 7,638 crore.

Choksi, Nirav Modi and his family fled in January around a month before the PNB filed first complaint against them about the fraud and they are still at large.

With Agencies Inputs 

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