Tag Archives: politics

Best bakery case hearings start in Bombay High court

MUMBAI: The Bombay High Court, on Monday began day-to-day hearing on the appeal of nine convicts, awarded life-term in the 2002 Best Bakery case, along with the petition filed by Shaikh Yasmeen Banum key prosecution witness alleging that she was lured and misguided.

Ms Bano sought that her evidence be recorded afresh by the High Court while hearing the appeal filed by the nine convicted. She had filed a petition in April 2011 stating that she gave ‘false deposition against the accused and identified them falsely at the behest and advice of Teesta Setalvad only in the false hope that she (Teesta) would help her financially.’

In Feb 2006 a Mumbai Sessions Court convicted and gave life imprisonment to 9 out of the 17 accused and issued notices to Zaheera and her family for tendering false evidence. Fourteen people who had taken refuge in the Best Bakery in Vadodara were killed, allegedly by a mob, on March 1, 2002, during the post-Godhra riots.

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Why delay implementing transplant law, Maharashtra asked

The Bombay High Court on Friday questioned the Maharashtra government for the delay in implementation of the amended Human Organ Transplant Act to reduce wastage of corneas.

Recent amendments to the Act state that a trained technician can remove cornea from bodies that have come for post-mortem after taking the consent of the relatives and there is no need for a medical practitioner.

“The amendment also made it mandatory for all hospitals to request the relatives of the deceased for eye donations,” Additional Government Pleader Niranjan Pandit told that court. “However, the State government has not implemented the amendment yet saying that they have still not received notification from the Central government about the amendment.”

A Division Bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice R.V. More questioned the laidback attitude of the government. “It is not necessary for the State to wait for notification… do you have any objection to amendments? If you are having objections we can understand the hesitation.”

“We already have a committee headed by the Dean of Sir JJ Hospital in place to review and frame guidelines on retrieval, preservation and use of cornea. But unless we receive the notification from the Centre, we cannot implement it… Apart from the healthy corneas that can be used for transplantation, many corneas are also needed for clinical purposes of training medical students,” Mr. Pandit said.

The court was hearing a public interest litigation petition filed by Sampat Shetty stating that only 14 per cent of the total eyeballs donated were actually utilised by eye banks. The court has now suggested that the amendment be put up before the Assembly session.

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Time we got freedom from corruption, says Anna

Despite a lower-than-expected turnout on the MMRDA ground at the Bandra-Kurla Complex in Mumbai, social activist Anna Hazare launched his three-day fast with vigour, reiterating his willingness to sacrifice his life for a stronger Lokpal Bill.

“I want to remind the parliamentarians that they are meant to serve us, not loot us… now the public has woken up and we demand a strong Lokpall Bill so that the country can get freedom from corruption even if we have to sacrifice our life for it,” he told a gathering of nearly 10,000 people.

“After the agitation on the Ramlila Maidan, the Prime Minister promised me that the Bill will be a strong and effective tool against corruption, but the entire country has been cheated. They have no intention to pass a strong Lokpal Bill, because they fear that their own dark deeds will come under scrutiny.”

Mr. Hazare appealed to people to join the jail bharo andolan after the fast.

“Goons and criminals are entering politics … We have to ensure that our law-making bodies remain sacred. We will fight for the ‘right to reject’ so that the voter has the right to say that all the candidates are corrupt or undeserving and if the voter decides to cancel the election, all the candidates will be disqualified.”

Mr. Hazare vowed to campaign against the Congress in State elections scheduled early next year and in the general election, if the Bill that is ultimately passed fails to win his approval.

“Bigger than Parliament in Delhi is the Parliament of people… But bigger than both is the Parliament of the village. Voters of poll-bound States must punish the government for betraying the Lokpal Bill.”

Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal said the government was consciously trying to distract the public by raising unnecessary issues as they were not honest in their intentions to give the people a strong Lokpal Bill.

 

Earlier, Mr. Hazare kicked off his protest from the Juhu beach here in the morning.

The cheering crowd calmed down as Mr. Hazare sat meditating before the Mahatma Gandhi’s statue for a few minutes. He then mounted a decorated open truck with his associates for the rally to the MMRDA ground.

Only a few hundred people turned up at the beach. But as the rally moved to the MMRDA ground, people lined up on both sides of the road and waved at him.

Justice (retired) Santosh Hegde flew down from Mangalore to extend his support. “I am completely with Anna on the demand for a strong Lokpal Bill. In fact, there is no need for additional infrastructure. The Lokpal can use the existing machinery. All that the institution requires is an independent investigating agency that is not under the control of the government.”

Mr. Hegde rejected the government’s argument that there should be no parallel discussion outside Parliament once the Bill is introduced in the House. “We are equal to parliamentarians. Today, the people who are responsible for the Constitution have no voice. We have to discuss our views about the correctness of the Bill,” he told The Hindu .

Mr. Hazare’s motorcade was stopped by 15-20 members of the Republican Party of India (Athawale). They waved black flags at him during his journey.

“We are with Anna for weeding out corruption. But the Lokpal should not break the constitutional framework,” RPI president Ramdas Athawale told TheHindu .

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‘UPA discriminating against non-Congress States’

The Chief Ministers of Punjab and Himachal Pradesh and senior members of the Bharatiya Janata Party on Saturday accused the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre of discriminating against the non-Congress-ruled States.

BJP president Nitin Gadkari, presiding over a conference here on ‘The Policies of UPA — A threat to Indian Federalism’, said the trend of discrimination was a threat to the federal polity of the country. “Bills for the country’s progress and security are passed by the State Assemblies but stay with the Governor for years without any action. This brazen misuse of Governor’s office is hindering the progress of States,” he charged.

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal said a State like Punjab that contributes over 60 per cent foodgrains to the Central pool has no say in the price of the final product or the cost of inputs. “My post seems hollow as I have no power to bring about any change in the agricultural field because the Centre has taken full control of it. Also the division of lists is such that States get all the area where work needs to be done and the Centre gets the areas where revenue needs to be collected. From the sale price of grains to cost of diesel, fertilizer and insecticide all is as per their orders and neither the farmer nor his representative have any say,” he said.

Himachal Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal said the federal concept of the country was to ensure division of work between the Central and State governments for optimum utilization of resources but the present government discriminates against the States that are not led by the Congress. “The Inter-State Council has not met even once in the last three years so there is no platform for interaction. Without releasing any funds, the Central Government announces a policy or project and we are held responsible for its implementation even if we have a better scheme already running or we need something else instead,” he said.

“We have been requesting that a railway line be built up to Leh so that the movement of the Army can be easier and the tough terrain of Leh can be accessed in case of emergencies but instead of considering it a matter of strategic importance, the Railway Ministry favours the Minister’s State,” he said, adding that the government bends rules to benefit corporate and MNCs but it creates hurdles for State governments and ultimately the States are held answerable.

“The Congress-led Central Government has utterly failed in controlling and checking the unprecedented price rise, black money and terrorism yet with its unconstitutional policies and with the blatant misuse of Governors, it is trying to destabilise the NDA- ruled State governments,” Mr Gadkari said.

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