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Bombay HC asks Centre, state govt, BMC to disclose booster dose policy

The Bombay High Court Friday directed the Centre, Maharashtra government and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to file affidavits within ten days in reply to the PIL filed by two city-based lawyers seeking framing and swift implementation of a vaccine-booster policy and arranging for booster dose “for every citizen on priority without any delay.” A division bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice Anil S Kilor was hearing a PIL filed by city-based lawyers Dhruti Kapadia and Kunal Tiwari last month. It stated, “It is a need of time to have the booster dose of vaccines started at the earliest, for which there is no policy in place by Centre, state or BMC. The experts involved in this field must roll out the policy covering every section of people who are due for booste...
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AAP’s Raghav Chadha sues Patiala resident over ‘defamatory’ social media remarks

A Delhi court has taken cognizance of a defamation complaint filed by AAP MLA Raghav Chadha, who is also the party’s co-in-charge for Punjab, against a Patiala resident who allegedly called him dalal, baiman and goonda in media interviews. Chadha alleged that Saurabh Jain had made deliberate imputations against him on Facebook, YouTube and other social media platforms, and levelled unsubstantiated charges of corruption and deceit against him. Metropolitan Magistrate Rishabh Kapoor listed the matter for summoning evidence when the complainant and his witnesses will be examined on April 26. Chadha’s counsel, Prashant Manchanda, argued that Jain in a “premeditated manner with the malevolent schemes to execute and further his vested political designs has deliberately and intentionally made ...
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Delhi: Man attempts to set himself on fire outside Supreme Court

A 50-year-old man allegedly tried to set himself on fire outside the Supreme Court in New Delhi on Friday afternoon. He was taken to the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, where he is recuperating and police are trying to contact his family. According to the police, the man has been identified as Rajbabu Gupta, who works in a factory in Noida Sector 128. “We received a call around 2.20 pm that a man had tried to self-immolate and that he was stopped by the security personnel. Police rushed to the spot and the victim was taken to hospital,” a police officer said. Police came to know he was not getting salary for the last three months by the management of a factory. He is out of danger, police said. !function(f,b,e,v,n,t,s) {if(f.fbq)return;n=f.fbq=function(){n.callMeth...
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Clubhouse discussions: Mumbai Police arrest three youth from Haryana

The Mumbai Police Crime Branch Friday arrested three persons from Haryana for allegedly participating in a discussion through the audio chat application Clubhouse app where they passed derogatory comments against women. The police said the accused have been identified as Akash Suyal (19), Jaishnav Kakkar (21) and Yash Parashar (22). The officials revealed that Suyal is from Karnal district of Haryana and was the moderator of the two groups on Clubhouse app while Kakkar and Parashar are B Com and law student, respectively, who were arrested from their residence in Faridabad. The police said the trio had created two chat rooms on January 16 and 19 where the participants were using derogatory comments against women, especially those belonging to the Muslim community. “They also spoke about...
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With decline in Covid cases in Mumbai, BMC likely to reopen gardens, parks

With the decline in Covid cases, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is planning to allow the reopening of gardens and parks in the city. The state government had on Thursday announced the reopening of schools and colleges (pre-primary to Class 12) across the state. BMC officials said they are expecting a fresh state government order in the next few days on further relaxation in curbs imposed in the city. On January 8, Maharashtra had announced several restrictions, including curbs on public movement from 11 pm to 5 am, closure of theme parks, open spaces, tourist spots and so on. “There might be some more relaxation in the curbs like reopening of gardens, parks, tourist places with limited hours. The announcement will be made only after a decision taken by the disaster manag...
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Delhi: Faecal transplant helps 78-year-old with recurrent diarrhoea, intestine inflammation

A 78-year-old Delhi resident suffering from recurrent inflammation of the large intestine and bloody diarrhoea has recovered after doctors from Sir Ganga Ram hospital treated him with faecal microbiota transplant (FMT), a procedure where stool from a healthy person is put into the colon of the patient. Despite treatment with antibiotics, the symptoms kept reoccurring in the patient and he was admitted to the hospital with fever, bloody diarrhoea, low blood pressure, and high heat rate. When his stool was analysed, the doctors found a bad bacteria called c. difficile. A c. difficile infection disrupts the growth of normal, healthy gut bacteria and is often a result of prolonged antibiotic use. It can cause severe symptoms that can be fatal. “FMT is the up and coming treatment. However, t...
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Anil Deshmukh’s plea for default bail ‘far-fetched’, ‘devoid of merits’: Court

In its detailed order rejecting the default bail plea of former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh, the special court observed that the extension of his judicial custody before the supplementary chargesheet was filed against him by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) cannot be held illegal. Deshmukh, who was arrested on charges of alleged money laundering on November 2 last year, had claimed in his bail plea that the court could not have extended his judicial custody on December 27. The court rejected his plea on Tuesday. The detailed order was made available on Friday. Special Judge Rahul N Rokade also rejected the former minister’s contention that he is entitled to default bail since the chargesheet filed by the ED on December 29 was not taken into cognizance by the court. The court...
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Delhi govt to lift weekend curfew, odd-even system in markets

As Covid cases and positivity rate gradually decrease, the Delhi government has decided to lift the weekend curfew and odd-even system in markets and malls. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has approved proposals to remove the Covid restrictions and have sent them to the Lieutenant Governor for final nod. “Keeping in view the reduction in cases, the government has proposed to lift a few Covid restrictions – weekend curfew and odd-even system in markets. The proposal to remove Covid restrictions has been approved by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and forwarded to the L-G for final approval,” said a source. These restrictions are likely to be lifted from next week, sources pointed out. However, the night curfew will continue to remain in place. The decision comes days after the New Delhi ...
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Daily Covid cases in Kolkata drop to 1,759

In a move that would ensure that patients get medical treatment on time, Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) will be appealing to residents opting for at-home Covid-19 testing kits to contact a pathology lab or the civic body to confirm the diagnosis, if they test positive. The drive will start Friday onwards and the announcements would be made on loudspeakers. “From tomorrow, we will campaign on loudspeakers so that anyone who has tested positive using an at-home test kit can get themselves tested again through KMC. This way, if there is a need for hospitalisation they won’t face any complications,” said Kolkata’s Deputy Mayor Atin Ghosh. He said that the decision would help the civic body get an accurate picture of the city’s Covid-19 graph. Currently, many residents are buying testin...
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9 BJP MLAs write to Nadda, want changes in party’s district units

Nine BJP MLAs from Purulia and Bankura districts have written to the party’s national president JP Nadda expressing their displeasure over recent organisational changes to the district units. On Wednesday, five BJP MLAs from Purulia wrote a letter to Nadda demanding that the new district president be removed. Following in their footsteps, four more saffron party MLAs from Bankura district on Thursday wrote to the BJP national president citing their reservations against the new district president. The four dissenting MLAs who wrote to Nadda on Thursday are Niladri Sekhar Dana, Amarnath Sankha, Dibakar Ghorami and Nirmal Kumar Dhara. “The district president needs to be a heavyweight personality. Otherwise, he will not be able to run the organisation. If he thinks he can at the behest of o...
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Lawyers allege ‘misconduct’ by Kalyan Banerjee, write to CJI

A group of 157 lawyers of the Calcutta High Court on Thursday wrote a letter to Chief Justice of India N V Ramana, Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court Prakash Shrivastava and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee alleging misconduct by Trinamool Congress MP and senior advocate Kalyan Banerjee. They urged strict action be taken against him. In the letter, the lawyers alleged, “Sri Bandopadhyay (sic) has had a long history of a short-temper and has on more than one occasion has lost his cool by resorting to uncouth and unparliamentary language in open court…He has tried to get over and above the law as well as people due to his close proximity to the powers of the state. People are forced to pay heed to his demands and illegal dictates as he knows very well how to use his position o...
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West Bengal Governor slams CM Mamata Banerjee for ‘not giving information’

West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar on Thursday fired a fresh salvo at Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee accusing her government of “unprecedented constitutional transgressions”, saying that her office was not providing information that he has been seeking over the last two years. “In disregard of constitutional ‘duty’ under Article 167 @MamataOfficial there is failure to provide any information to the Governor including: Pandemic Purchase Enquiry, BGBS, Bengal Aerotropolis Project, GTA, MAA Canteen, & Pegasus Notification. Unprecedented constitutional transgression,” the Governor tweeted. Coming down heavily on the CM, he further wrote that the set of responsibilities and duties that have been vested in them by the Constitution has been “continually belied in practice at her end”. D...
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Yes Bank’s former MD Rana Kapoor denied bail in money laundering case

A Delhi court on Thursday dismissed the bail application of former MD and CEO of YES Bank, Rana Kapoor, in a money laundering case related to the wrongful loss of Rs 466.51 crore to the bank observing that he appears to be the man pulling the strings. Special Judge Sanjeev Aggarwal denied relief to Kapoor, observing that prima facie “Kapoor appears to be the controlling mind of the fraudulent transaction along with one Gautam Thapar, as both were at the apex of corporate ladder qua Yes Bank and Avantha Group respectively”. The court said that it “appears he was also one of the main beneficiary of this sham transaction”. “It is also apparent that he may be the man pulling the strings or the controlling mind or master mind or head controlling the present transaction prima facie, whereas t...
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EOW: Need to probe 82 staff at Rohini jail who helped Sukesh, took crores from him

Two months after Delhi Police arrested seven jail officials for allegedly helping inmate Sukesh Chandrashekhar extort Rs 200 crore from Aditi Singh, wife of former Fortis Healthcare promoter Shivinder Singh, the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) has asked the jail administration to allow it to probe 82 officials and staff of Rohini jail under the Prevention of Corruption Act. Police have claimed that Sukesh paid around Rs 25-30 crore to jail staff to secure an entire barrack for himself.In a letter to DG (Tihar) Sandeep Goel on January 10, DCP (EOW) Mohammad Ali said a case, dated August 7, 2021, had been registered under sections of the IPC, IT Act and MCOCA at the Special Cell police station on the complaint of Aditi Singh. “During investigation conducted so far, seven jail officials – two...
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Central Railway eviction notices: Won’t allow single house to be demolished, says Awhad

Housing Minister Jitendra Awhad on Thursday reiterated that he will not allow a single house to be demolished by the Central Railway (CR), which had issued eviction notices to people illegally occupying premises alongside railway tracks. The Supreme Court, on December 17, 2021, had directed the Railways to initiate action against officials for allowing encroachment and not removing the same. Following this, Railway Board Member (Infrastructure) Sanjeev Mittal had ordered all zonal railways to remove encroachers by following eviction proceedings. “I will not allow any house to be demolished. Shelter is the right of poor people and if anyone is going to deprive them of their rights, I will stand with them…A poor man builds a hut because of his need. For him, it is a matter of life and dea...
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Extortion case: Sessions court gives bail to Param Bir, Waze co-accused

A sessions court on Thursday granted bail to Vinay Singh, arrested in an extortion case, in which former Mumbai Police commissioner Param Bir Singh and dismissed police officer Sachin Waze are named as co-accused. As per the case, lodged in Goregaon, Vinay along with another accused would collect money from bars and restaurants on the instructions of the two police officers. Vinay was granted bail with conditions, including that he shall not leave Mumbai without prior permission of the court. Arguing on his behalf, lawyer Aniket Nikam had said that there has been a delay in filing of the FIR and that Vinay had no contact with either Singh or Waze. The court was also informed that Singh has been granted protection by the Supreme Court. !function(f,b,e,v,n,t,...
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NCP MP writes to Naqvi, seeks withdrawal of Haj Committee’s decision to reduce number of seats

NCP MP Fauzia Khan on Thursday wrote to Union Minister of Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, seeking the withdrawal of the Haj Committee of India’s (HCI) decision to reduce the number of seats in its residential coaching facility for civil service exams run for Muslim students at Haj House in Mumbai. The Indian Express on January 20 had reported about how the HCI, which was training 200 Muslim students every year from 2015 till last year to help them prepare for civil services exams, this year decided to reduce its seats to only 100 – half of the total number. The move has been opposed by various Muslim organisations. “On one hand, it is often said that the Muslim youth does not come to mainstream and on the other hand, such issues play with this minority caliber. These instances co...
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Mumbai to get thundershowers, colder days ahead

Mumbai and its surrounding areas are likely to get light rain and thundershowers on Saturday. The city is also expected to see a drop in temperature in the coming days. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has forecast a partly cloudy sky for three days from Friday while Sunday is expected to be dry. The light rain is under the influence of a cyclonic circulation likely to form over southwest Rajasthan on January 22. After recording above normal night temperature crossing 20 degrees Celsius on Monday and Tuesday, the night temperature dropped slightly. On Thursday, the IMD’s Santacruz observatory recorded a normal minimum temperature at 17.2 degrees Celsius. As per the seven-day forecast issued by IMD, the minimum temperature is likely to further drop to 13 degrees Celsius on Janua...
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Delhi records 12,000 new Covid cases; Health minister says peak has passed but no ease in restrictions yet

The capital reported 12,306 fresh Covid cases Thursday, fewer than cases reported a day ago. The positivity rate – or the proportion of samples tested that return positive – also dropped by 2.38 percentage points to 21.48% Thursday, according to the daily health bulletin. The number of deaths with the infection, however, has increased to 43. This is the highest number of deaths recorded in January, and the highest since 44 deaths were reported on June 10 last year. With 396 deaths so far, this month’s toll stands close to 400. There were nine deaths recorded in December, seven in November, four in October, and five in September. In fact, this month’s toll is the highest since June when 740 deaths were recorded as the delta variant drive second-wave was waning. The peak of deaths usually...
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Disheartening to see revamped Chandni Chowk falling into disrepair: Delhi HC

Observing that it was “really disheartening” to see the rejuvenation and redevelopment of the Chandni Chowk area falling into disrepair due to rampant encroachment, the Delhi High Court on Thursday ordered the North Delhi Municipal Corporation and Delhi Police to take action without any delay. Taking note of the photographs placed before it by Chandni Chowk traders during the hearing of a petition, the division bench of Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Jasmeet Singh said the photos show the extent of encroachment by street vendors and completely belie the stand taken by police and the corporation regarding regular drives for clearing them. “First photograph is that of the area within the bus stand and the area around it. It is shocking to see that the entire area around the bus stand h...