Tue, 23 August 2022
Retd CJIs to get rent-free house for 6 months

Timeline  Refresh

23:24   Keep aside differences, unite against BJP, says Pawar; chides Congress
Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar on Tuesday urged opposition parties to keep aside differences and unite to take on the BJP in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.
He also chided the Congress for not standing by the Aam Aadmi Party which is at the "receiving end" of the central investigation agencies in connection with the alleged irregularities in the roll out of the Delhi Excise Policy 2021.
"It was the duty of the Congress... You may have differences with Arvind Kejriwal. But our real fight is with the BJP. Our fight is against the communal forces," Pawar said addressing a meeting of the minority wing of the NCP.
"We should not take any step that would benefit, directly or indirectly, the communal forces. Every one should remember this," the NCP chief said.
He said even during the Emergency years there was a feeling in political circles that nothing would change for the next 25 years, but people ushered in change the very next year in 1977.
"We political leaders may not be that intelligent. But the common man is intelligent. The common man will teach the BJP a lesson in 2024," Pawar said.
He said he would make efforts to unite non-BJP political parties. "They should keep aside their differences and work together."
Pawar recalled that BJP was not in power in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, Delhi, Rajasthan, Punjab and Chhattisgarh.
He said BJP came to power in Karnataka, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh by breaking political parties by luring away MLAs.
"Such actions do not have public sanction," Pawar said, contending that 70 per cent of the country 's landmass was not ruled by the BJP. -- PTI 
CJI N V Ramana will retire on Aug 26
CJI N V Ramana will retire on Aug 26
23:14   Retd CJIs to get rent-free accommodation for 6 mnths
Chief justices of India will get rent-free accommodation for six months after demitting office while apex court judges will get round-the-clock security for one year upon superannuation, the government said Tuesday.
The Department of Justice in the Law Ministry notified the amended 'Supreme Court Judges Rules' to extend chauffeur facility and secretarial assistant for one year from the date of retirement to former SC judges.
The sanctioned strength of the Supreme Court is 34 judges and on an average three retire annually, a functionary pointed out.
Chief Justice of India N V Ramana, who demits office on Friday, will be one of the first to avail the new post-retirement facility.
"A retired chief justice or a retired judge (of the apex court) shall be entitled to the protocol to extend courtesies at ceremonial lounges at airports," the amended rule read.
According to the notification, the chauffeur with full pay and allowances admissible to regular employees will be drawn from the establishment of the apex court or the high court.  
The secretarial assistant will be equivalent to the level of the Branch Officer in the Supreme Court.
"A retired Chief Justice or retired judges shall be entitled to security cover round the clock at residence in addition to a round-the-clock personal security guard for a period of one year from the date of retirement," the notification said.
It also said that a retired chief justice of India "shall be entitled to a rent-free Type-VII accommodation at Delhi (other than the designated official residence) for a period of six months from the date of retirement."
Type VII accommodation is usually provided to sitting MPs who have been former Union ministers.
Sources pointed out that some of these issues had come up during the recent Chief Ministers-Chief Justices Conference held here. Judges had flagged various issues and some of them were accommodated by amending SC Judges Rules on Tuesday. -- PTI 
Speaker Vijay Kumar Sinha
Speaker Vijay Kumar Sinha
23:09   Won't resign despite no-confidence motion: Bihar assembly speaker
A day ahead of Bihar assembly's special session called to prove the new government's majority, Speaker Vijay Kumar Sinha on Tuesday asserted that he will not resign despite a no-confidence motion moved by MLAs of the ruling 'Mahagathbandhan'.
Sinha, a BJP leader, claimed that the motion was based on "false" charges against him, and brought without taking care of "legislative rules".
"In the no-confidence motion, which seems to have cared little for rules (sansadiya niyam'), I have been accused of partisanship (pakshapat') and a dictatorial attitude (tanashahi'). Both allegations are blatantly false. Resigning in such circumstances will hurt my self respect, he told reporters.
The Speaker, however, did not comment further when asked what was going to be his party's stance on Wednesday, with the numbers in the House clearly stacked against the BJP.
"I am at present occupying the Chair and shall be bound by the norms associated with the constitutional office. My priority will be to discharge my duties in accordance with rules," Sinha added. -- PTI 
22:39   Irfan Habib a 'gunda', he tried to suppress my voice physically: Kerala guv
Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan on Tuesday targeted noted historian Irfan Habib over the incident of alleged heckling he had faced at Kannur University in 2019, calling the academician a "gunda" and alleged that he tried to "suppress" his voice "physically" then.
Referring to the incident that occurred in December 2019 when he went to inaugurate the Indian History Congress hosted by Kannur University where Habib was also a speaker, Khan alleged that the historian came directly at him for a physical fight.
As the Governor was about to address, most of the delegates assembled for the event rose, voicing their protest against his stand on the Citizenship Amendment Act, which was a burning issue then.
"Is it the job of an academic to indulge in a physical fight? This is the job of a gunda. A street gunda. Irfan Habib is a gunda. When I tried to reply, he wanted to suppress my voice physically," the Governor told reporters in New Delhi, reacting to a query.
Khan's statement came days after he came down hard on Kannur University Vice Chancellor Gopinath Ravindran over the issue, calling him a "criminal".
The Governor alleged that the Vice Chancellor had allowed Habib and others to make speeches for a long time criticising him severely, but when he stood up to answer the questions, "a physical attack attempt was made on me".
"You all saw how my ADC (aide-de-camp) was heckled. His shirt was torn. Habib came directly at me," Khan said while speaking about his "criminal" remark against the Vice Chancellor.
There was no immediate reaction from Habib to the Governor's allegations.
The Governor had on August 21 accused Ravindran of being part of the alleged conspiracy to attack the former when he was invited to the varsity.
"He was party to the conspiracy to hurt me physically. He is a criminal. He is sitting as VC because of political reasons. I was invited there by the VC. What was his duty when I was attacked? Was he not supposed to report it to the police? He did not do so," Khan had told reporters in the national capital.
Over 50 well-known academicians and historians on Monday had condemned Khan's "criminal" remark against Ravindran and said that such "harassment" of a distinguished academic should stop. -- PTI 
22:21   Sisodia ready to go behind bars but won't bow down: AAP
After the Enforcement Directorate registered a money laundering case over the Delhi excise policy, the Aam Aadmi Party on Tuesday said it had to happen as Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia rejected the Bharatiya Janata Party's offer to join it to free himself from charges in the matter.
Sisodia is ready to go behind bars but he would not "bow down" before the BJP, the AAP added. 
Official sources said the Enforcement Directorate has registered a money laundering case to probe alleged irregularities in the excise policy allegedly involving Sisodia and others.
The federal agency has filed the case under the criminal sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act after taking cognisance of a CBI FIR that has named Sisodia and 14 others. 
Reacting to the news about registration of the case by the ED, AAP national spokesperson and Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh said in a tweet in Hindi, "This had to happen. They (from BJP) had threatened Manish ji that if he does not join the BJP, the ED case will also be registered and he will be sent to jail."
"Manish ji is ready to go to jail but not ready to bow down," he added.
The CBI had conducted raids in the case last week and had covered the Delhi residence of Sisodia and several other locations across seven states and Union Territories.
Sisodia holds multiple portfolios in the Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government including that of excise and education.
The ED will probe if alleged irregularities were done in the formulation and execution of the Delhi excise policy brought out in November last year.
22:01   Mumbai-bound IndiGo aircraft returns to taxi bay at Goa airport due to engine glitch
A Mumbai-bound IndiGo flight with 187 passengers on board returned to the taxi bay at the Goa Airport on Tuesday afternoon due to a glitch in one of its engines, a senior airport official said.
All the passengers were deplaned safely by rescue teams of the Indian Navy, said airport director S V T Dhananjaya Rao. 

The airport is part of the navy base INS Hansa.
"IndiGo flight 6E 6097 Goa to Mumbai with 187 passengers including four infants on board had to abort the flight due to a technical snag in the right engine while proceeding to the runway at 1.27 pm," he told PTI.
The airline, in a statement, said the pilot got a "momentary engine warning" during taxiing. 
The aircraft was taken to the taxi bay by the Navy teams, Rao said. 
"On a preliminary analysis, it seems the warning was spurious and there was no fire,"  a senior Directorate General of Civil Aviation official told PTI. 
This was the second incident involving an IndiGo flight in the last three days. 

On Sunday one of its flights from Delhi to Kolkata suffered a "false cargo smoke warning" before landing. 
"IndiGo Airbus (VT-IZR) operating 6E6097 from Goa to Mumbai returned back after taxiing out. While taxiing, the pilot got a momentary engine warning. The pilot carried out their procedures and returned the aircraft back for necessary inspection," IndiGo said in a statement about Tuesday's incident.
All passengers will be accommodated on another flight to Mumbai, it added.
According to sources, the aircraft had to be pushed back from Bay number nine, however the movement of other aircraft was not affected. 
Sources also said that most of the passengers were accommodated on a flight to Mumbai and those who missed their connecting flights were provided hotel accommodation. -- PTI 
21:39   MVA is intact: Uddhav Thackeray
Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday said the Maha Vikas Aghadi, his party's coalition with the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party, continues despite being dethroned in Maharashtra.
Talking to reporters after a meeting of MVA partners at the state legislature complex in Mumbai, Thackeray said his government successfully handled the  coronavirus crisis.

The current challenge before his party and the MVA was nothing in comparison to that posed by the pandemic, he said. 

Thackeray visited the Vidhan Bhavan in south Mumbai for the first time on Tuesday since his resignation as chief minister on June 29 following Eknath Shinde's rebellion. 

"We (MVA partners) met after a long time and felt good. We are still together. We will tell you (soon) what we are going to do," Thackeray said when asked if the three parties would contest the coming civic polls in Mumbai under the MVA umbrella.

The Congress has been vocal about contesting the polls independently.   

On the ongoing legal battle in the Supreme Court over various petitions filed by the respective Sena factions headed by him and chief minister Shinde, Thackeray said he had full faith in the judiciary. -- PTI  
21:29   Goa police registers unnatural in Sonali Phogat death case
Police have registered an unnatural death case after BJP leader and actor Sonali Phogat was "brought dead" at a hospital at Anjuna in North Goa, a senior police official said on Tuesday.
"Preliminary enquiry has revealed that she had come to Goa on August 22 and was staying in a hotel in Anjuna. Today early morning she started feeling uneasiness at a hotel and was shifted to hospital wherein she was declared brought dead," Deputy Superintendent of Police (Mapusa) Jivba Dalvi said.
He said the police received a call at 9 am about the matter.
An "unnatural death" case has been registered at Anjuna, he said.
"Statements of the relevant witnesses are being recorded and Anjuna Police have written to the Department of Forensic Medicine at Goa Medical College for appointing a panel of doctors for conducting post-mortem examination," he said.
Further investigation is in progress, the DSP said. PTI 
20:42   ED registers money laundering case against Sisodia
The Enforcement Directorate has registered a money laundering case to probe alleged irregularities in the Delhi Excise policy allegedly involving Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and others, official sources said Tuesday.  
The federal agency has filed the case under the criminal sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act after taking cognisance of a Central Bureua of Investigation FIR that has named Sisodia and 14 others. 
The CBI had conducted raids in the case last week on August 19 and had covered the Delhi residence of Sisodia, 50, that of IAS officer and former Delhi excise commissioner Arava Gopi Krishna and 19 other locations across seven states and Union Territories.
Sisodia holds multiple portfolios in the Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government including that of excise and education.
The ED will probe if alleged irregularities were done in the formulation and execution of the Delhi Excise Policy brought out in November last year.   
The scheme came under the scanner after Delhi Lt Governor V K Saxena last month recommended a CBI probe into alleged irregularities in the implementation of Delhi's Excise Policy 2021-22.  
He also suspended 11 excise officials in the matter. 
Sisodia too demanded a CBI probe into the alleged irregularities in the policy. 
The CBI inquiry was recommended on the findings of the Delhi chief secretary's report filed in July showing prima facie violations of the GNCTD Act 1991, Transaction of Business Rules (ToBR)-1993, Delhi Excise Act-2009 and Delhi Excise Rules-2010, officials said.  
The ED, during its probe, will analyse if individuals and companies who were involved in the policy-making of this scheme and related entities generated any "proceeds of crime under the definition of PMLA" and if there was any possible creation of illegal or benami assets, sources said.  
The agency has powers to attach such assets and question, arrest and prosecute those who indulge in the offence of money laundering. 
According to officials, the chief secretary's report had shown prima facie violations, including "deliberate and gross procedural lapses", to provide post-tender "undue benefits to liquor licensees" through the policy.  
20:08   I-T dept issues prosecution notice to Anil Ambani
The income tax department has sought to prosecute Reliance Group Chairman Anil Ambani under the Black Money Act for allegedly evading Rs 420 crore in taxes on undisclosed funds worth more than Rs 814 crore held in two Swiss bank accounts.
The department has charged Ambani, 63, with "wilful" evasion, saying he "intentionally" did not disclose his foreign bank account details and financial interests to Indian tax authorities.
A show cause notice in this context was issued to Ambani early this month.

The department said he was liable to be prosecuted under Sections 50 and 51 of the Black Money (undisclosed foreign income and assets) Imposition of Tax Act of 2015 that stipulates a maximum punishment of 10 years imprisonment with a fine.
It has sought his response to the charges by August 31.
Ambani's office had not responded to a query sent on the matter till the time of this story being filed. 
The businessman has been charged with evading tax, by way of holding undisclosed assets abroad, for the assessment years 2012-13 to 2019-20.
According to the notice, a copy of which was accessed by PTI, tax officials found that Ambani was an "economic contributor as well as beneficial owner" of a Bahamas-based entity called 'Diamond Trust' and another company called Northern Atlantic Trading Unlimited (NATU) which was incorporated in the British Virgin Islands (BVI).
In the case of the Bahamas trust, the department found it had a company called Dreamwork Holdings Inc. This firm was the owner of a Swiss bank account, which had a peak balance of USD 32,095,600 (USD 3.2 crore) as on December 31, 2007.
The notice said the trust got initial funding of USD 25,040,422 (USD 2.5 crore). The department alleged that the "source of funding" for this was from Ambani's "personal account". It found that Ambani gave his passport as the KYC document for the opening of this trust in 2006. The beneficiaries of this trust were his family members too.
The BVI company, incorporated in July 2010, has an account in Bank of Cyprus, Zurich. The department claimed Ambani was the "ultimate beneficial owner" of this company and the funds that it has. 
The company is also alleged to have received USD 10 crore in 2012 from a Bahamas registered entity called PUSA, whose "settlor and beneficial owner" is stated to be Ambani, as per the department. 
19:39   CBI will arrest Sisodia in 2-3 days: Kejriwal
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday claimed that his deputy Manish Sisodia is likely to be arrested in the next few days.

"We heard that they will arrest Manish Sisodia within the next 10 days, but now I feel that they will arrest him in the next 2-3 days," Aam Aadmi Party national convener Kejriwal said addressing a public meet in Gujarat's Bhavnagar.

This came when Arvind Kejriwal and Manish Sisodia are on their two-day visit to Gujarat ahead of the state assembly polls.

On August 19, the Central Bureau of Investigation searched Sisodia's home and carried out raids at several places in connection with the alleged corruption in the implementation of Delhi's excise policy.

Meanwhile, Delhi Deputy CM Manish Sisodia talked about the 'development' in the city, and said, "We have given 2 lakh government jobs and 10 lakh private jobs... This rapidly growing enthusiasm among people across the country is what is making CBI tighten the noose on me. I want to say that I am an honest person and I am not afraid of CBI."

During the Gujarat visit, on Monday, Kejriwal sought to put up a strong defence for his deputy and said Sisodia had done what others could not achieve in seven decades.

The AAP chief has made several promises to the people of Gujarat, where assembly elections are due later this year.
19:04   TN govt has released glossary on addressing LGBTQ persons, HC told
The Tamil Nadu government has issued a glossary, as suggested by the Madras high court, as to how the persons belonging to the third gender should be addressed/described.
The Additional Advocate-General told Justice N Ananth Venkatesh on Tuesday that the  glossary was published in the Tamil Nadu government gazette of the Social Welfare and Women Empowerment department on August 20 this year. He also furnished a copy of the same to the judge and submitted that by virtue of the publication of the glossary in the official gazette, the terms mentioned in it would have a statutory backing and whenever the LGBTQIA+ community is to be addressed by any forum, it is mandatory to describe them only by using the terms that have been mentioned in the gazette. 
By doing so, an attempt is being made to address persons belonging to LGBTQIA+ community with more dignity and respect, the AAG said.
The judge recorded AAG's submissions and made it clear that all concerned, including the visual and the print media must take note of the notification and address the persons belonging to community by using only the notified terms wherever required.
As regards the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Rules, the judge was told the draft rules had been received from the Director of Social Welfare and it requires scrutiny and compliance of the Central Act, 2019. It also requires the approval of the Law department, before the circulation of the same to the Chief Minister. Hence, the judge was requested to give six more months to finalise the rules and to notify the same.
The judge was also told that for the Transgender Policy, instructions had been issued to the Transgender Welfare Board secretary to prepare the exclusive policy for such persons in consultation with stake-holders concerned, including the officials of State Planning Commission. Six more months time was sought for to come up with the final policy.
However, the judge felt that six more months to finalise the Transgender Policy and the rules thereunder, is totally unacceptable. It shows that priority is not being given for this issue. This process has been going on for more than a year and it is not known as to why six months time is sought for, the judge wondered. 
The government must bear in mind that persons belonging to LGBTQIA+ community have been sidelined from the main stream of the society for too long a period and it is high time that top priority is given to implement the policy and rules. If the government is really willing and serious about the upliftment of persons belonging to LGBTQIA+ community, some urgency must be shown to finalise the policy and the rules. 
18:55   Adani to buy 29.18% stake in NDTV
Adani group firms on Tuesday made an offer to acquire 26 per cent stake of New Delhi Television Ltd (NDTV) following indirect acquisition of 29.18 per cent shareholding in the media and news broadcaster.
Three firms, Vishvapradhan Commercial Pvt Ltd along with AMG Media Networks and Adani Enterprises Ltd, have offered a price of Rs 294 for the acquisition of up to 1,67,62,530 fully paid-up equity shares of NDTV having a face value of Rs 4 from the public shareholders.
A public announcement has been made by JM Financial Ltd, which is managing the offer on behalf of the acquirers.
"The Offer Price is higher than the price determined in accordance with Regulation 8(2) of the SEBI (SAST) Regulations," the offer said.
On Tuesday, shares of NDTV settled at Rs 366.20 on BSE, up 2.61 per cent from the previous close.
Its revenue for the financial year ended March 31, 2022 was Rs 230.91 crore. 
18:54   3 IAF officers sacked for BrahMos misfiring
Three officers have primarily been held responsible for the BrahMos missile misfiring incident on March 9, 2022, the Indian Air Force has announced. 

Their services have been terminated by the central government with immediate effect, and the termination orders have been served on the officers today, August 23, the IAF said.

The officers who have been terminated from service include a group captain, a wing commander and a squadron leader. 

The officers deviated from the standard operating procedures which led to the accidental firing of the missile, the IAF said.
Shopping in Bandra
Shopping in Bandra
17:41   2 held for opening fire at Mumbai's Linking Road
The Mumbai police have arrested two people in connection with the shooting outside a shopping centre in suburban Khar, an official said on Tuesday.

The accused, Noor Javed Sheikh (19) and Rohan Ravindra Tambe (22), were apprehended by the police last week for allegedly opening fire outside Gazebo Shopping Centre in Khar (west), the official from Khar police station said.

On the night of August 11, three men rode up to the shopping centre and fired a few rounds from a country-made pistol. They also left a note in Hindi, threatening to kill any hawker running his business outside the premises, the police said.

Investigations revealed that Tambe had allegedly opened fire and Sheikh brandished a knife and left the threatening note at the spot, he said.         

Tambe has two cases to his name and Javed is a first-time offender, while the prime conspirator Arbaz Sayyed still at large, the official said.

A case was registered under section 307 (attempt to murder), 387 (putting or attempting to put a person in fear of death or grievous hurt in order to commit extortion), 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code and provisions of the Arms Act, he added. 
17:09   Raj Thackeray backs Nupur over Prophet remark
Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray on Tuesday supported suspended Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson Nupur Sharma over her remarks against Prophet Mohammad.
Controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik had said the same thing earlier but no one asked him to apologise, Thackeray said while addressing a meeting of MNS functionaries in Mumbai.

"Nobody asked Naik for an apology," the MNS chief said.

Thackeray also slammed the "Owaisi brothers" (AIMIM leaders) for allegedly ridiculing the names of Hindu gods. No action has been taken against them, he said, using an abusive term while referring to them.

The MNS chief also taunted his estranged cousin and former Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray over the latter's claim that the BJP reneged on the promise of rotating the CM's post after the 2019 assembly elections in Maharashtra.

"When I was in Shiv Sena, Balasaheb (Thackeray) had decided that the party having more MLAs will have the CM post," he said.

"Also, during the election campaign, PM Narendra Modi and Amit Shah had publicly said that Devendra Fadnavis (present Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra) will be the CM. Why did you not object then instead of waiting for the poll results and going against the people's mandate which was for the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance," he said.

Raj Thackeray said the late Shiv Sena founder had hugged him when he was about to leave that party.

"I had gone to meet Balasaheb. He knew I was not staying (in the Sena). He hugged me and said: Now you can go," the MNS chief recalled.

"I want to take Balasaheb's ideology forward. It doesn't matter if I don't have the symbol (bow and arrow symbol of Shiv Sena)," he said. -- PTI
Representative image
Representative image
16:49   Young children are at increased risk of tomato flu: Study
Young children are at increased risk of exposure to tomato flu, and if not controlled and prevented, the transmission might lead to serious consequences by spreading in adults as well, warns a recent study published in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine journal.
Tomato flu, or tomato fever, was first identified in Kollam district of Kerala on May 6, according to the Lancet report.
The infection has been reported in 82 children younger than five years by local government hospitals as of July 26.
Apart from Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Odisha have reported cases of tomato flu.
"Children are at increased risk of exposure to tomato flu as viral infections are common in this age group and spread is likely to be through close contact. Young children are also prone to this infection through use of nappies, touching unclean surfaces, as well as putting things directly into the mouth," read the report published on August 17.
"...if the outbreak of tomato flu in children is not controlled and prevented, transmission might lead to serious consequences by spreading in adults as well," it added.
The rare viral infection, which got its name on the basis of the eruption of red and painful blisters throughout the body that gradually enlarges to the size of a tomato, is currently in an "endemic state".
Though considered non-life-threatening, a vigilant management is desirable to prevent further outbreaks, especially because of the dreadful experience of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the study.
Although the virus shows symptoms similar to those of COVID-19 -- including fever, fatigue, body aches and rashes on skin -- the report in the medical journal suggests that it could be an after-effect of chikungunya or dengue fever in children rather than a viral infection.
"The virus could also be a new variant of the viral hand, foot, and mouth disease, a common infectious disease targeting mostly children aged 1-5 years and immunocompromised adults...," it explained.
As of now, no antiviral drugs or vaccines are available for the treatment or prevention of tomato flu. -- PTI
16:27   Govt to auction 17 non-operational mines of PSUs
The government plans to put on auction 17 mines surrendered by public sector undertakings which could not put the blocks into operation, Coal and Mines Minister Pralhad Joshi said on Tuesday.

The statement comes in the wake of the government making efforts to ramp up domestic coal production to ensure adequate availability of dry fuel to different sectors.

"Just the-day-before yesterday (Sunday) I got 17 blocks back and they are very good blocks and I am putting them for auction now," Joshi said.

Speaking during a conference on the Indian minerals and metals industry organised by NMDC and FICCI, the minister said many PSUs in the country in sectors like coal were sitting on big mines.

The government decided to take away all those mines from the public sector undertakings which do not get into operation even after the lapse of five to six years and put them on sale.

"I talked to the chief ministers and ministers of a few states and asked them the reasons for sitting on mines. These mines could not get into operation even after 10 to 15 years," Joshi said.

Joshi also said that his ministry was in deliberations with the Ministry of Environment and Forest on how the exploration of mines can happen without cutting down trees.

Through an amendment to MMDR Act in 2021, private exploration agencies which have been accredited are allowed to carry out exploration without prospecting licence upon their notification and so far nine private exploration agencies have been notified for this purpose.

In 2021-22, the total revenue accrued from auctioned mines is more than Rs 25,170 crore.

To be future-ready, the mines ministry, he said, is also exploring sources of minerals like lithium, cobalt, nickel, rare-earth elements, lead, zinc and others.

"With this view, I visited Australia last month to secure critical minerals that will help the country transition to clean sources of energy," he added.  -- PTI
15:57   Raju Srivastava stable, still unconscious: Daughter
Popular actor-comic Raju Srivastava, who has been in the intensive care unit of AIIMS for a fortnight following a heart attack, is stable and continues to be unconscious, his daughter said Thursday.

The 58-year-old stand-up comedian was admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi after he suffered a heart attack on August 10.

He underwent an angioplasty the same day.

"He is stable and still unconscious. Doctors are treating him," Srivastava's daughter Antara told PTI.

Last week amid reports of his deteriorating health, his wife Shikha had said Srivastava is a 'fighter' who will come back stronger.

Shikha had also requested the media and the fans to not spread rumours as it affects the family's 'morale'.

"We do not want negative energy, we need positivity. Please pray for his speedy recovery and he will be back soon," she had told PTI.

Also known for Hindi films such as Maine Pyar Kiya, Main Prem Ki Deewani Hoon and Aamdani Atthani Kharcha Rupaiya, Srivastava is a former contestant of reality shows such as The Great Indian Laughter Challenge and Bigg Boss 3.

He is the chairperson of the Film Development Council Uttar Pradesh.   -- PTI
15:28   Aditya Pancholi moves HC to seek quashing of rape case
Actor Aditya Pancholi has approached the Bombay high court seeking to quash a 2019 case of allegedly raping a leading woman actor.          

Pancholi in his petition said the FIR was lodged at suburban Versova police station in June 2019, but till date the police have neither filed a charge sheet nor submitted a closure report.

His advocate Abhinav Chandrachud on Tuesday argued before a division bench of Justices N M Jamdar and N R Borkar that not submitting a charge sheet indicates there has been no progress in the investigation.

Apart from seeking for the FIR to be quashed, Pancholi also sought a direction to police to inform him about the progress made in the probe into the case.

The high court after briefly hearing the matter issued a notice to the police and the woman complainant and posted the matter for further hearing on September 19.

The court directed the police to inform on the next date of hearing about the stage of investigation into the case.

Chandrachud argued that the case is pending since 2019 and hanging like a sword over Pancholi's head who is living under the stigma of being an accused in a rape case.

The woman had in her complaint alleged that Pancholi drugged and raped her when she was a newbie in Bollywood.

She alleged Pancholi had not only physically assaulted her, but also assaulted her sister. 
15:13   BJP suspends Telangana MLA for Prophet remarks
The Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday suspended its Telangana MLA T Raja Singh for his controversial remarks aimed at the Prophet Muhammad.

Singh, known for his hard Hindutva views and often controversial statements involving Muslims, was suspended by the party following protests against his comments leading to his arrest by the Telangana Police.

A statement from Om Pathak, who is secretary of the party's central disciplinary committee, said, 'You have expressed views contrary to the Party's position on various matters, which is in clear violation of Rule XXV 10 (a) of constitution of the Bharatiya Janata Party. I have been directed to convey to you that pending further inquiry, you are suspended from the party and from your responsibilities/assignments if any, with immediate effect.'

Pathak also asked Singh to 'show cause' within 10 days from the date of this notice as to why he should not be expelled from the party.

'Your detailed reply must reach the undersigned no later than 2nd of September 2022,' Pathak said.   -- PTI
14:54   Jammu court issues warrant for Rubaiya Sayeed
A special court in Jammu on Tuesday issued a bailable warrant against Rubaiya Sayeed, the daughter of former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, after she did not appear for cross-examination in a case related to her abduction by the JKLF in 1989. 

Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief Yasin Malik, one of the accused in the case, appeared before the court from Delhi's Tihar Jail via video conference. 

He once again insisted on his physical appearance while turning down the court's offer of legal aid or amicus, standing counsel for the CBI Monika Kohli said. 

On July 15, Rubaiya had identified Malik and three others as the ones who took her captive. 

Rubaiya was abducted near Lal Ded Hospital on December 8, 1989, when her father was the Union home minister and freed from captivity five days later on December 13 after the then V P Singh government, supported by the BJP at the Centre, released five terrorists in exchange. 

Rubaiya, who stays in Tamil Nadu, is listed as a prosecution witness by the CBI, which took over investigation into the case in early 1990. 

"Rubaiya had to appear before the court for cross-examination (on Tuesday) but she remained absent. The court has issued a bailable warrant against her to appear before the court on the next date of hearing on September 21," the CBI counsel said. 

Kohli said Malik once again pressed for physical appearance so that he could cross-question the witnesses in the case even as the court offered him legal aid or amicus which he declined to accept. 

Malik, 56, is at present lodged in the high-security Tihar Jail after he was sentenced by a special NIA court in Delhi in May. He was arrested in early 2019 in connection with the 2017 terror-funding case registered by the National Investigation Agency (NIA). 

In the last hearing of the case, Rubaiya appeared in the court for the first time and identified Malik, who was present through video conference.
14:06   23 Indians in Yemen move HC against bar on travel
Twenty-three Indians working in Yemen have moved the Delhi high court, challenging the Centre's 2017 notification that prohibits Indian passport holders from visiting Yemen.

The petitioners sought direction to set aside Gazette Notification dated 26.09.2017 issued by Government of India being ultra vires to the Constitution of India and also direct Chief Passport Officer, Ministry of External Affairs to release the passports of the petitioners seized citing Gazette Notification.

According to the direction issued, 'The passport or travel document issued by the Central Government is invalid for the travel of holder to Yemen as the travel of the holder to Yemen would seriously impair the conduct of foreign affairs of the Government of India.'

Further, 'any Indian national who travels to Yemen in violation of this notification, shall be liable for action under section 12 of the said Passports Act, 1967 and the passport shall be liable for impounding or revocation, as the case may be, under sub-section (3) of section 10 of the said Act and Violation of the directions issued by this notification by any holder shall be liable for refusal of passport under section 6 of the said Act for a period of seven years from the date of revocation of such passport'.

All the petitioners who are residents of Kerala moved the Delhi high court through Advocate Subhash Chandran K R submitted that they have been working in Yemen for many years for their livelihood.

All the petitioners belong to financially backward category and their social conditions compelled them to find some jobs in a country like Yemen which is vulnerable from the security point of view.

Advocate Subhash Chandran K R also submitted that the petitioners herein are even ready to swear an affidavit stating that they will not travel to Yemen until the Government of India lifts the travel ban.

The plea submitted that the impugned action of respondents violates fundamental rights of petitioners guaranteed under Article 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution of India.

It also mentioned that most of the petitioners are in middle-age group and it is very difficult for them to find a job or profession at this stage in India for their livelihood.

The petition also submitted that most of them are looking for /getting offers from many foreign countries other than Yemen.

The petitioners prayed that the court may set aside Gazette Notification dated 26.09.2017 issued by Government of India being ultra-vires to the Constitution of India or alternatively direct respondents to release the passports of petitioners.

The matter was listed before the bench of Justice Satish Chander Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad where counsel for respondent said that they are awaiting for the instructions.

Then court orally observed that you don't have a right to seize someone's passport, you may issue travel ban or restrictions but withholding someone's passport is not fair, while fixing the matter for further hearing on September 1, 2022.   -- ANI
13:18   SC refers Maha political crisis to Constitution bench
The Supreme Court on Tuesday referred to a five-judge bench the petitions filed by the Shiv Sena and Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde raising several constitutional questions related to defection, merger and disqualification. 

A bench headed by Chief Justice N V Ramana ordered the listing of petitions before the Constitution bench on Thursday and directed the Election Commission not to pass any orders on Shinde faction's plea that it be considered the real Shiv Sena and granted the party's poll symbol. 

"List the matter before the Constitution bench the day after tomorrow and the bench will decide about the symbol related to the Election Commission proceeding at the beginning," the bench also comprising Justices Krishna Murari and Hima Kohli said. \

The bench was hearing pending cases related to the recent political crisis in Maharashtra that led to the fall of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in the state.
12:58   Delhi HC seeks Irani's response to Twitter plea
The Delhi high court on Tuesday sought the response of Union Minister Smriti Irani on a plea by microblogging site Twitter seeking certain clarifications in the court's earlier order by which it had directed social media giants to remove web links allegedly containing objectionable material against the BJP leader and her daughter. 

Justice Mini Pushkarna issued notice to Irani on an application filed by Twitter in which it sought clarification in the July 29 order to the effect that the platform is only bound to take down similar material which is found to be defamatory on being provided with URLs by plaintiff Irani. \

The application was filed on Irani's pending civil defamation suit in which the high court had on July 29 issued summons to three Congress leaders Jairam Ramesh, Pawan Khera, and Netta D'Souza and had also asked them to take down tweets and other social media posts about the allegations levelled against the Union minister and her daughter. 

Besides, the high court had directed search engine Google, social media platforms Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to remove the allegations, videos, posts, tweets, re-tweets, captions, taglines along with the morphed pictures of the plaintiff and her daughter and the underlined material with such defamatory content or anything similar thereto including recirculation on their respective platforms. 

Twitter sought clarification that the order is to be directed against defendants 1 to 3 (Congress leaders) and not against the social media platform. 

As the counsel for Irani sought time to respond to the application, the high court granted her two weeks to file a reply.
12:47   Sonia Gandhi calls on President Murmu
Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday called on President Droupadi Murmu at Rashtrapati Bhavan. 

"President, Indian National Congress Sonia Gandhi called on President Droupadi Murmu at Rashtrapati Bhavan," Rashtrapati Bhavan tweeted along with a photo of the two leaders.
Representational image
Representational image
12:30   4 earthquakes jolt J-K in 6 hours, no casualties
Four earthquakes jolted Jammu and Kashmir in less than six hours on Tuesday, officials said. 

However, no loss of life or damage to property was reported, they said. 

The epicentre of the first quake, which occurred at 2.20 am, was 61 km east of Katra area in Jammu region, they said. The officials said the quake hit at latitude 33.07 degrees north and longitude 75.58 degrees east at a depth of 10 km. 

The second earthquake of 2.6 magnitude occurred 9.5 km north east of Doda in Jammu region at 3.21 am, they said. The quake hit at latitude 33.23 degrees north and longitude 75.56 degrees east at a depth of 5 km. 

The third quake of 2.8 magnitude occurred 29 km east of Udhampur in Jammu region at 3.44 am on Tuesday, they said. The quake hit at latitude 32.89 degrees north and longitude 75.45 degrees east at a depth of 10 km. 

 The fourth earthquake of 2.9 magnitude occurred 26 km south east of Udhampur at 8.03 am, they said. It occurred at latitude 32.83 degrees north and longitude 75.40 degrees east at a depth of 5 km.
12:01   Mumbai 5-star hotel receives bomb threat
An unidentified person called up a five-star hotel in Mumbai claiming bombs were kept at four locations there which he threatened to blow up and demanded Rs 5 crore to defuse them, the police said on Tuesday.           

After the man's threat call on Monday, the hotel located in suburban Andheri was checked.

An official from Sahar police station said as per a preliminary probe, it seemed to be a mischief and a hoax call.

The hotel staffers later approached the Sahar police who registered an FIR against the unidentified caller under various Indian Penal Code sections including 385 (putting person in fear of injury in order to commit extortion), he said.

Multiple teams have been formed and efforts are on to nab the caller, he added. 
11:45   Rahul Dravid is Covid positive, to miss Asia Cup
Just In: India's head coach Rahul Dravid has tested positive for Covid-19 and will not be travelling for Asia Cup to Dubai, BCCI sources have disclosed.
11:34   Man who killed wife by pushing her before moving train held
Thane police have arrested a man who allegedly killed his wife by pushing her before a moving train at Vasai Road railway station in neighbouring Palghar district of Maharashtra, an official said on Tuesday.

A CCTV footage of the incident, that took place around 4 am on Monday, showed the man, in his 30s, waking up his sleeping wife, dragging her to the edge of the railway platform and pushing her on the tracks in the path of the Awadh Express train.

A video of the horrifying incident had gone viral on social media platforms.

The victim died on the spot and the badly mutilated body was later sent for post-mortem.

The CCTV footage also showed the man picking up his two children with a backpack and fleeing the platform after the incident.

The man was later spotted boarding a train to Dadar in Mumbai and from there to Kalyan in Thane.

The police nabbed him late Monday night from Thane's Bhiwandi town, the official said.

The official said a preliminary probe revealed the woman had gone out for two days with a friend of her husband which annoyed him and both had a quarrel over it.

The preliminary investigation also indicated that the man doubted his wife's character and this led to the incident, he said.

A case was registered against the man under Section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code, the official said.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Railway Sandeep Bajibakhre lauded the police team which nabbed the accused.   -- PTI
11:26   BJP leader Sonali Phogat dies of heart attack in Goa
Bharatiya Janata Party leader from Haryana's Hisar and actor Sonali Phogat died of a heart attack in Goa, party leaders said on Tuesday.

"She has passed away. I have been given information that she was in Goa," Haryana BJP chief O P Dhankar told PTI.

It was not immediately clear as to when she died.

A former TikTok star, Phogat had joined the BJP in 2019.

Capt Bhupender, district president of the Hisar BJP said, "Sonali ji was in Goa. I spoke to her assistant and he said that she died of a heart attack".

Phogat had unsuccessfully contested the last assembly election from Adampur Assembly constituency against Kuldeep Bishnoi.

Bishnoi, who was then in Congress, recently joined the BJP.   -- PTI
11:15   Bilkis case: Remission order challenged before SC
JUST IN: The remission order by the Gujarat government, releasing convicts in Bilkis Bano case has been challenged before the Supreme Court. 

More details awaited. -- ANI
Representative image only
Representative image only
11:07   Assault weapons seized along Indo-Pak border
The Border Security Force (BSF) has recovered a cache of assault weapons, suspected to have been smuggled from across the border, during a patrol along the India-Pakistan border in Punjab on Tuesday.

Three AK series rifles along with six magazines, 2 M3 sub-machine guns with four magazines and two pistols along with two magazines were unearthed by the personnel of the border force from the Ferozepur sector in the early hours, officials said.

The weapons are suspected to have been smuggled in from Pakistan, they said.   -- PTI
10:37   Telangana BJP MLA held for Prophet remarks
Telangana Police detains Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Raja Singh for his alleged derogatory comments against Prophet Muhammad.

Earlier, protests erupted at South Zone DCP office last night demanding action against him.

"Case registered U/s 295(a), 153(a) & other sections," P Sai Chaitanya, DCP South Zone, Hyderabad, said.  -- ANI
10:26   Unrest grows in China over crime against women
Due to growing cases of criminal activities against women in China, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is being forced to recognize the growing unrest within the country due to the lack of protection of the rights of women and respect gender equality and gender justice.

The country witnessed a wave of change when this January, China was rocked by visuals of the mother of eight children seen chained by her neck to a post which caused severe unrest in the country.

This was followed by another video of an upmarket restaurant where a group of women is harassed and beaten up by Chinese men after a woman protested a man trying to lay his hand on her back which caused a furore in the country, the Singapore Post reported.

The two incidents generated a lot of heat on Chinese social media, especially against the deep-rooted sexist attitudes in Chinese society where women find it really bad to survive even today.

An Al Jazeera survey conducted last year about the current state of women's representation in Chinese politics revealed that 'of the nearly 92 million members of the CCP, just under 28 million are women -- that's less than 30 per cent'.

Only a fifth of the National People's Congress is made up of women.

Moreover, between December 24, 2021, and January 22, 2022, China's Law on the Protection of Women's Rights and Interests was opened up to the public so they could offer amendment proposals.

Around 85,221 people participated in the first round of consultations in January 2022, with a total number of 423,719 amendments proposed, the largest number of proposals made during a consultation period, stated the report by Singapore Post.

The second amendment proposal deadline passed on 19 May 2022 and the Chinese women continue to wait for the outcome so that the situation of women and their rights can improve in the country.

Women continue to play a peripheral role in male-dominated China, which cannot tolerate women's rights in the country even as the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) celebrated 100 years of its founding recently.

Not once since the Party took power in 1949 has a woman been appointed to China's top political body, the seven-member Politburo Standing Committee, let alone become the country's top leader.

Vice-Premier Sun Chunlan, 71, is the only woman on the Politburo, a 25-person panel that reports to the Standing Committee.

In local governments, this gender gap isn't any narrower.

According to Valarie Tan, an analyst at the Mercator Institute for China Studies in Germany, while 10 per cent of provincial, municipal, and county-level leadership positions are supposed to be reserved for women, quotas are rarely met due to a deep-seated preference for men, reported SupChina.

Women occupy a mere 9.33 per cent of county-level posts as head of government or party secretary, falling to 5.29 per cent in cities and 3.23 per cent at the provincial level.   -- ANI
10:09   Shivnath Express train on way to Maharashtra derails in Chhattisgarh
The Shivnath Express train derailed at Dongargarh in Chhattisgarh on Tuesday while it was heading to Nagpur to Maharashtra, railway officials said.

No casualty was reported, they said.

Five wheels of two trolleys next to the train's engine derailed at the Dongargarh yard at 3.42 am, a railway official told PTI.

The train was on way from Korba in Chhattisgarh to Itwari in Nagpur, he said.

No passenger was injured. They were provided food and snacks, the official said.

Relief trains from Gondia and Itiwari were sent to the accident spot, he said.

The affected coaches were removed and the train later left for its onward journey to Rajnandgaon and Itwari, the official said.   -- PTI
Representative image only
Representative image only
09:19   Infiltration bid foiled along LoC in Rajouri
Army has foiled an infiltration attempt by a group of terrorists along the Line of Control (LoC) in Rajouri district of Jammu and Kashmir, a defence spokesperson said on Tuesday.

There was movement of suspected infiltrators in Naushera sector on the intervening night of Monday and Tuesday.

A search operation in the area is underway and further details are awaited, he said.

According to officials, a group of suspected terrorists tried to sneak into Pukharni village of Laam in Naushera under the cover of darkness from across the border.

One of the terrorists stepped over a landmine causing an explosion around 10 pm on Monday, they said, adding the alert Army troops who were observing the movement of the terrorists laid a cordon and started a search of the area on Tuesday morning.

It is not immediately known whether any terrorist was injured or killed in the explosion, officials said.

The latest infiltration bid in the Naushera sector comes close on the heels of the arrest of a highly trained Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) guide, who also worked for an intelligence unit of Pakistani army, in an injured condition by Army on Sunday.

Tabarak Hussain, 32, a resident of Sabzkot village of Kotli in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), was arrested for the second time in the past six years while trying to infiltrate into this side from across the border.   -- PTI
08:39   Tejashwi orders probe into ADM thrashing protestor
Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav on Monday ordered a committee probe into the incident wherein an Additional District Magistrate (ADM) beat up a Secondary Teachers Eligibility Test (STET) candidate during a protest march in Patna on Monday, after a video of the same went viral on social media.

In the video, the ADM could be seen bashing the young protestor with a stick, while the latter was holding a tricolour and rolling on the ground.

While addressing the media persons in Patna, Bihar, Yadav said, 'Lathi charge was done to control students taking out a protest march in Patna wherein the ADM was thrashing a STET candidate. Enquiry committee made; strict actions will be taken against him if found guilty.'

Earlier on Monday, the Office of Yadav tweeted, 'Hon'ble Deputy Chief Minister spoke to Patna District Magistrate over the phone. DM has constituted an inquiry committee under the leadership of Patna Central SP and DDC that why ADM himself lathi-charged the candidates, and what was the situation? If found guilty, action will be taken against the concerned officer.'

Earlier on Monday, police lathi-charged and used water cannons to disperse teaching job aspirants in Patna.   -- ANI
00:52   Kejriwal invokes Mahabharat, targets BJP in Gujarat
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday sought to position the  contest between the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Aam Aadmi Party in the upcoming Gujarat assembly polls as a "Dharamyudh" like the Mahabharat where the ruling outfit has the "armies" of probe agencies CBI and the ED on its side, while his party has the "support of Lord Krishna".
Kejriwal, who is also the AAP convener, compared the BJP with the Kauravas, the defeated villains of the Mahabharat, and his side as the Pandavas, the victorious heroes of the Hindu epic.

Addressing a townhall meeting in Himmatnagar town of Sabarkantha district of the poll-bound state, he claimed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-ruled Gujarat is yearning for a change and the AAP has received immense support from people.

This was the reason why the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) raided the home of Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, in connection with the Delhi Excise Policy, the AAP's national convener said.

Sisodia, who holds education and finance among a host of key portfolios in the Delhi government, who was also present in the town hall programme.

"This is a Dharamyudh (religious war) like the Mahabharat," Kejriwal said, and narrated the story of how Duryodhan (from Kauravas) and Arjun (from Pandavas) approached Lord Krishna for support before the 18-day war began.

Arjun said he wanted Lord Krishna on his side, while Duryodhan sought his army, the CM said.

"Today, these people (a reference to BJP) have all the armies, power, the CBI, the ED (Enforcement Directorate),  the Income Tax, police and a lot of money. We have Shree Krishna with us. We have God with us. And in the end truth, God will prevail. God resides in the hearts of people, they are God. They (BJP) may harass us, but people are with us," he said at the town hall organised by the AAP as part of its election campaign.

Kejriwal said his government in Delhi has implemented far-reaching reforms in education and healthcare which were not seen in 75 years of Independence.

"This is the reason they jailed my health minister (Satyendar Jain) two months back on the basis of a false case. The case is false. Had there been an iota of truth (in charges against him), and had Jain been even a little bit dishonest, I would have kicked him out (of Cabinet), like I did with another minister," said the Delhi CM.

The AAP leader asserted there is zero tolerance for corruption in his government.

"We do not tolerate even a little bit of corruption. But they do not look at corruption. Two months back they jailed my health minister, and now they want to arrest Manish Sisodia in the next 3-4 days. Why? Because they want to stop the good works being done in education and healthcare," he said.

Kejriwal said Gujarat, where the Assembly polls are due by the year-end, wants a change after 27 years of the BJP rule.

"So far Gujarat did not have an alternative. Now, they have got a good, honest alternative, and people want good works to be done in the state like what all are being done in Delhi and now Punjab (also ruled by AAP)," said the bureaucrat-turned-politician.