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Uttarakhand : People protest demanding better roads, relief from flooding



Uttarakhand, July 12 : Heavy rains lashed many parts of Uttarakhand , especially those in Kumaon region, with Khatima in Udham Singh Nagar district receiving the maximum of 222 mm of showers.

Residents of Khatima in Udham Singh Nagar are protesting demanding better roads and relief from flooding in the area.

A local said,”We’ve been facing road connectivity and flooding issues since a long time, few days ago a pregnant woman had to be taken to hospital on a boat.”

Kichcha, another town in Udham Singh Nagar district, received 135 mm of rainfall followed by Kalsi in Dehradun district which received 129 mm and Raiwala which recorded 115 mm of rainfall.

The Kali and Gori rivers in Pithoragarh district were in spate, flowing just a few metres below the danger level at 888.70 and 604.55 metres respectively.


Onion prices ease in Delhi amid increased arrivals



People buy onion

New Delhi, Dec 9 : Wholesale prices of onion eased in Delhi on Monday after an increase in local produce arrivals as well as the bulb sourced from the overseas.

“Around 24,000 bags of onion, each containing 55 kg of the crop, arrived at the Azadpur Mandi that brought down the prices as compared to the previous week,” Rajendra Sharma, President Onion Merchant Association told IANS.

Azadpur Mandi is the biggest vegetable market in the country.

Apart from domestic produce, around 200 tonnes of imported onion also arrived at the Mandi on Monday, he added.

Wholesale prices of onion were quoted in between Rs 50-75 per kg at the mandi on Monday. Hence, prices were down by Rs 5 per kg against the previous week, a source said.

Onion from Afghanistan and Turkey was also arrived here, the source said.

“Over 80 trucks of onion came from Afghanistan in past two days. A large quantity of Afghani onion is being supplied in the border state of Punjab,” the source said.

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Two more rape cases reported in UP




gang rape

Auraiyya/Bijnore (Uttar Pradesh): Cases of rape continue to be reported in Uttar Pradesh despite the growing public outrage against such heinous acts.

An 18-year-old girl was allegedly abducted and gang-raped in a moving SUV in Auraiyya district of Uttar Pradesh while a 14-year-old girl was raped by a youth in Bijnore district.

The first incident took place on November 29, but the FIR was registered on December 7 after the girl’s father complained of police inaction to the senior officials.

The survivor has named four persons, including an Army jawan and his brother, in the FIR.

The FIR has been filed under charges of gang-rape, criminal intimidation, punishment for wrongful confinement, and robbery against the Army jawan, his brother and two others.

According to the complaint, the girl was on the way to her coaching institute on a two-wheeler, when she was abducted by four SUV-borne men on November 29. The girl alleged the accused took turns to rape her for two hours in a moving car and later dumped her.

The accused threatened to kill her if she reported the matter to the police.

The victim somehow reached home and narrated the ordeal to her parents.

Her father said that his immediate concern was the safety of his daughter and he did not report the matter to the police immediately.

“However, on the insistence of the family members, I went to the Mahila Thana to lodge an FIR on December 1, but women cops shooed us away. I again went to meet the SHO next day, but she remained unfazed too,” he added.

The father then met the Superintendent of Police (SP) who sent the girl for medical examination. The girl’s medical report has ruled out sexual assault but injuries on the body have been found.

“We have also traced the prime suspect, an Army jawan, who is based in Allahabad and a team has been formed to question him,” she added.

In the second incident, a 14-year-old girl was abducted by a youth, who lived in the neighbourhood, and raped her on Saturday.

Police have registered an FIR under IPC section 376 (rape) and POCSO Act against the accused Shainky Singh of Prithvipur village of Bijnore district and the girl was sent to a district hospital for medical examination on Sunday.

The girl’s uncle has also been booked for ‘helping’ the accused in abducting the victim.

She was offered a lift by her uncle who later asked the accused to drop his niece to the school on his bike.

Both the accused are yet to be arrested.

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Madhya Pradesh govt retracts on promise to hold student polls




kamal nath

Bhopal, Dec 8 : The Kamal Nath government has gone back on its promise to hold students union elections in the government and private colleges of Madhya Pradesh this year.

The state was expected to hold the students elections after a gap of over 15 years. The earlier plan was to hold the elections in September or October. On September 1 the state’s Higher Education Minister Jitu Patwari had told the media that the state government was in favour of students directly electing their representatives and around 1,300 colleges across the state would witness election process.

On Sunday came the announcement that the elections cannot be held this year. However, Patwari said the government will certainly hold the elections next year. The Congress manifesto for the assembly elections – ‘Vachan Patra’ (promissory note) as it is known had said students’ union elections would be will be held in colleges if Congress came to power.

The promise was repeated several times during the one year the government has been in place. Congress-backed student organisation NSUI and BJP-backed ABVP have been preparing for elections in colleges. Both the unions have expressed disappointment over the government’s decision.

Vivek Tripathi, state spokesperson for the NSUI said the party had made a categorical promise about the elections. “They should also keep their word. We will discuss the matter with the government. At the same time, students will continue to fight for rights.”

Chetas Sukhadia, ABVP organisational secretary also said “the Congress government is retracting on its promise. This is very unfortunate. The ABVP will organise state-wide agitation against the government inaction on the issue.”

Patwari said “I tried my best to organise students union elections in colleges this year. I was keen to hold elections because there has been wide gap since the students got their rights. My department is very large and I got very little time to understand it. Now the examinations are getting closer. As such it is not possible to hold elections this year. Students union elections will be held next year in colleges under any circumstances.

Direct students union polls were last held in the state in 1987. Afterwards, they were either carried out through indirect elections or were cancelled fearing violence in education campuses.

Direct elections to the students union were discontinued in the state in 2003 by the then BJP government. But it had allowed indirect elections till 2006. The students could chose their leaders in the class and the class representatives had to elect the leaders for the student bodies. But this was also discontinued following the death of Professor H.S. Sabharwal during the elections in 2006.

But the process resumed in 2017 when NSUI and ABVP won several seats in different regions. For the first time, AAP’s youth wing Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS) had also secured wins. Student polls last year were called off due to Assembly elections in the state.

Sabharwal (59), head of the department of Political Science at Madhav College in Ujjain, was attacked by a mob of 25-30 ABVP students on August 26, 2006, at the college premises after he cancelled the students’ council elections. He died at the hospital the next day.

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