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Shiv Sena moves Supreme Court against Governor’s decision approaches Kapil Sibal

Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray has consulted senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal for legal recourse as to why they were not given three-day time to form the government in Maharashtra.

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New Delhi, Nov 12 : The Shiv Sena on Tuesday moved the Supreme Court against the Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari’s decision not to extend the 24 hour time period given to the party to prove its number on the floor to form the government.

The Sena, which has emerged as the second-largest party with 56 seats in the 288-member Assembly, said that it was constrained to move the top court seeking urgent relief against the “arbitrary and malafide actions” of the Governor.

The party sought quashing of the order of the Governor and declaring the action “unconstitutional, arbitrary, illegal, void-ab-initio, and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution of India”.

Also raising questions on the Governor’s behaviour, it said that he cannot act in such a manner or act on the diktats of the Central Government.

The Sena was invited by the Governor when the single-largest party BJP, which won 105 seats, said that it cannot form a government.

It told the court that the Governor was in “hot haste” as he refused to grant even three days’ time to prove the requisite majority to form the government.

“The impugned actions/decisions of the Governor is violative of Article 14 and Article 21 of the Constitution. It is ex facie arbitrary, unreasonable, capricious and a malafide exercise of the power in order to ensure that the Petitioner No. 1 (Shiv Sena) is precluded from getting a fair and reasonable opportunity of proving its majority on the floor of the House,” the petition filed through senior advocate Kapil Sibal, lawyers Sunil Fernandes and Nizam Pasha said.

According to the petition, Shiv Sena had requested three days time to give the letters of support to demonstrate that it has the requisite majority to form the government on the same day when it has staked claim to form the government.

The Sena said that the party was in advanced talks for government formation with the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) as well as the Congress.

In its petition, the Sena also mentioned the step taken by the party including party MP Sanjay Raut meeting NCP chief Sharad Pawar and said that these talks have been in a positive direction. The party also mentioned resignation of Arvind Sawant, the sole Union Minister from the Shiv Sena in the NDA government, from the Union Cabinet on November 11.

It also informed the court about Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray’s telephonic conversation with the Congress interim President Sonia Gandhi.

Sena also said that the party has got the support of eight independent MLAs – Narendra Bondekar, Manjula Gavith, Shankar Rao Gadak, Chandrakanth Patil, Ashish Jaiswal, Bachhukadu, Rajkumar Patel and Rajendra Patel Vadraokar.

It pleaded with the court to intervene and direct the Governor to grant reasonable time to the party to prima facie demonstrate the requisite support to form the Government.

The Sena said that the Governor, as per the law, ought to have invited the party to form Government and directed it to prove its majority on the floor of the house.

“…the factum of the majority cannot be decided by the Hon’ble Governor in his own ipsi dixit (an unsupported statement that rests solely on the authority of the individual who makes it) and the floor of the House is the only ‘constitutionally ordained forum’ to the test majority,” the plea said.

Asserting that the government formation is a sacrosanct political process in a democracy and Governor cannot act as a stumbling block for thwarting a political party from forming the government, the party said: “As per the constitutional conventions and practices, the Governor is duty-bound to allow reasonable time for political parties to conclude their negotiation on government formation and not act as an agent/mouthpiece of the Central Government and/or the Ruling party at the Centre.”

The party also cited the example of ninth General Elections, when no party secured an absolute majority and the President invited the largest party (Congress) to form the Government. when the largest party declined the offer, the leader of the next largest party (Janata Dal) was invited and subsequently a minority Government at the Centre was formed with the outside support of other parties.

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Rape convict writes to President

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New Delhi, Dec 7-The 2012 gang rape case convict Vinay Sharma has written to President Ram Nath Kovind seeking withdrawal of his mercy petition.

Sharma through his counsel A.P. Singh wrote to the President on Saturday requesting him that he be allowed to withdraw the mercy petition, claiming that the mercy plea sent to the President by the Ministry of Home Affairs was not signed by him. Singh alleged there was a conspiracy as he has not yet filed a curative petition.

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Justice loses its character if it becomes revenge: CJI Bobde

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Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde

Jodhpur, Dec 7– Chief Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde said on Saturday that justice can never become instant, and it loses its character if it becomes revenge.

The Chief Justice’s remarks gain significance in the backdrop of “encounter” killings of four persons accused of rape-murder of a veterinarian by Telangana police. The police have faced criticism from various sections, although people at large have hailed the “punishment”.

While inaugurating a new building of the Rajasthan High Court, the Chief Justice said, “Recent events in the country have sparked an old debate with new vigour. There is no doubt that criminal justice system must reconsider its position, reconsider its attitude towards time, towards laxity and towards the eventual time it takes to dispose of a criminal matter.

“But I don’t think justice can ever be, and ought to be, instant. Justice must never take the form of revenge. I believe justice loses its character of justice if it becomes revenge.”

The CJI said, “There is a need in the judiciary to invoke self-correcting measures, whether those measures should be publicised can be a matter of debate. But I believe the institution must correct itself as indeed it did during the much-criticised press conference (in 2018)”.

The CJI was apparently referring to a press conference by four senior judges of the Supreme Court in January 2018, accusing then CJI Dipak Misra of violating conventions and allowing the executive to interfere in court affairs. All the four judges have since retired.

“We have to device methods for speeding up litigation. There are laws which provide for free litigation mediation and I take this opportunity to say why we should not have compulsory free litigation mediation across all district courts.

“Surprisingly no courses are available for conferring a degree or diploma in mediation. We have taken the initiative and have asked the Bar Council of India to work on this,” he said.

Bobde said he envisages utilisation of Artificial Intelligence to improve the efficiency of justice administration system.

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NIA chargesheets 2 in ISIS Kerala, TN module case

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New Delhi, Dec 7 (IANS) The National Investigation Agency on Saturday filed a chargesheet against two ISIS suspects arrested by the agency in connection with its probe into the ISIS Kerala-Tamil Nadu module case, including the group mastermind.

An NIA spokesperson in Delhi said the anti-terror probe agency filed the chargesheet against Mohammad Azarudeen and Sheik Hidayatullah in a Special NIA court in Ernakulum under several sections of IPC and the Unlawful (Activities) Prevention Act (UAPA).

According to the NIA, Azarudeen was the mastermind of the Islamic State group’s Tamil Nadu module and he was arrested from Coimbatore on June 12 this year.

The NIA had arrested both the accused the same day. According to NIA officials, Azarudeen was also a Facebook friend of Zahran Hashim, the alleged mastermind behind the recent easter bombings in Sri Lanka that left over 250 people dead.

The Central probe agency registered a case on May 30 this year, taking suo motu action against six accused from Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, based on information that the accused and their associates were propagating the ideology of the proscribed terrorist organization ISIS/Daish on social media with the intention of recruiting vulnerable youths in Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

The spokesperson said that during investigation, it was revealed that Azarudheen and Hidayathulla were propagating violent extremist ideology since 2017.

According to the NIA officials, Azarudeen was the leader of the module and was also maintaining a Facebook page named “KhilafahGFX”, through which he had been propagating the ideology of ISIS/ Daish.

“They organized several secret classes at their houses besides at other places in Coimbatore, in support of the ISIS/Daish. They also followed the Sri Lankan ISIS/ Daish leader Zahran Hashim, over social media, while downloading and disseminating his speeches in support of violent jihad,” he said.


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