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Thursday,28-October-2021

Crime

Contempt case: Kunal Kamra says SC judges powerful, but ‘have no protection from jokes’

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Stand-up comedian Kunal Kamra told the Supreme Court that his tweets were not published with the intention to diminish the faith of people in the highest court of the country.

“To believe any institution of power in a democracy is beyond criticism is like saying migrants need to find their way back home during ill-planned, nationwide lockdown: it is irrational and undemocratic,” said Kamra in an affidavit.

Kamra is facing contempt of court case for publishing tweets making undignified and derogatory comments against the top court.

In the affidavit Kamra stressed that public’s faith in the judiciary is founded on the institution’s own actions and not on any criticism or commentary about it.

“The suggestion that my tweets can shake the foundations of the most powerful Court of the world is an overestimation of my abilities. Just as the Supreme Court values the faith public places in it, it should also trust the public not to form its opinions of the court on the basis of a few jokes on Twitter.

“The public’s faith in judiciary is founded on the institution’s own actions and not on any criticism or commentary about it,” said Kamra in affidavit.

Kamra added that judges of our constitutional courts are amongst the most powerful people in the country. “They have extraordinary powers over the fundamental rights and lives of citizens of this country, and their office and tenure are constitutionally protected to shield them from political interference,” he said

However, Kamra argued that constitutional offices, which includes judicial offices, know no protection from jokes. “I don’t believe that any high authority, including judges, find themselves unable to discharge their duties only on account of being the subject of satire or comedy,” said Kamra defending his tweets in the affidavit.

The top court is scheduled to hear the matter initiating contempt against Kamra later in the day.

Crime

UP: Woman assaulted in hotel, 2 held

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Sexual-abuse

 Two persons have been arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting a woman in a hotel here.

The accused have been identified as Riyasat and Umaid while the third accused, Sarfaraz, a religious preacher is absconding.

According to reports, the woman was allegedly assaulted on Wednesday by Riyasat and Umaid in a hotel room on the pretext of performing a practice required to legalise re-marriage with her first husband, who had divorced her six months ago. He wanted to marry her again.

The woman informed her brother about the incident who then informed the police.

Vineet Bhatnagar, SP (Meerut) said, “The woman was allegedly raped by two men. An FIR has been registered and two people have been arrested. Further action will be taken on basis of evidence. The woman’s statement will be recorded.”

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Crime

Wankhede family was Muslim: Sameer’s ex-in-laws bombshell

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 The Wankhede family was Muslim, performed ‘namaz’ and ‘Ramadan fasts’ and were known to the family of Sameer’s former wife Dr. Shabana Quraishi almost four years before marriage, revealed the latter’s father Dr. Zahid Quraishi, here on Thursday.

Speaking to hordes of mediapersons, Dr. Quraishi — the ex-father-in-law of Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) Zonal Director Sameer Wankhede — said that the two families had “excellent relations” prior to his (Sameer’s) wedding with his daughter.

“The marriage took place before they were Muslims… Otherwise it would not have materialised… They were good Muslims, performing ‘namaz’ and ‘Ramadan rozas’ also,” Dr. Quraishi asserted, dropping a bombshell.

Dr. Shabana Quraishi was acquainted with Sameer Wankhede over three years before their engagement and got married some 10 months post-betrothal, and later they had a child out of the wedlock.

The new disclosures come a day after the Wankhede family members vehemently denied that they were Muslims and asserted that they were Hindus.

In a climbdown of sorts following the furore, Sameer Wankhede’s father Dynaneshwar Wankhede said that his late wife addressed him by a pet name of ‘Dawood’, while his wife Kranti Redkar-Wankhede said he (Sameer) married in a Muslim ceremony as per the desires of his deceased mother.

Nationalist Congress Party Minister Nawab Malik reiterated that the issue he had raised was not about Wankhede’s religion, but his forged caste-papers on the basis of which he secured a Central government job in the IRS.

“I challenge them to prove me wrong… I shall quit my Ministerial post immediately… I dare them to drag me to any court of law and I shall ensure that all my charges are true with evidence,” said Malik grimly, after his series of exposures on Sameer Wankhede’s role in the NCB kicked up a huge political dust-storm.

The Muslim priest Maulana Muzammil Ahmed, who performed the ‘nikaah’ (marriage) of Sameer Wankhede-Dr. Shabana Quraishi in Andheri west, on Wednesday confirmed that the bridegroom was a Muslim and his father’s name was Dawood.

“The bride was a Muslim, the bridegroom was also Muslim, their parents were Muslims… Otherwise I would not have performed it (nikaah),” Maulana Ahmed told mediapersons.

The row over Sameer Wankhede’s religious credentials erupted after Malik on Wednesday posted his ‘nikaah-nama’ with his signature and the December 7, 2006 wedding pix of the couple in Muslim attire, and how he had allegedly forged his caste certificate later to get a reserved category government job.

However, the Wankhede family has rubbised all the allegations and some Bharatiya Janata Party activists have demanded his sacking from the state cabinet for misusing his official position.

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Maha Police nab 2 most wanted Maoists disguised as civilians

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 Marking another achievement, the Gadchiroli police have nabbed two most wanted Maoists — carrying a reward of Rs 2,00,000 each — disguised as civilians, during a covert operation, an official said here on Thursday.

They are Muda Masa Zohi, 32 and Mainu Dorpeti, who were participating as civilians during a rally of local villagers opposing the Surjagad Mining Project, said Superintendent of Police Ankit Goyal.

While Zohi is an Action Team Member, Dorpeti is a Jan Militia activist and both have serious cases lodged against them.

Following reliable intel that a group of Maoists masquerading as villagers may infiltrate the rally on October 26, the Gadchiroli police deployed its own force members in plainclothes to detect them.

After successfully identifying them from the crowds, the covert police teams guided by the top officers like Somay Munde, Sameer Shaikh, Anuj Tare, managed to trap and arrest them, said Goyal.

As per his records, Zohi was directly involved in the bloody encounters at Zarewada (February 27, 2019), Bodmeta (March 15, 2020), Koparshi (March 4, 2021) and other serious offences.

Dorpeti was personally linked with the brutal killing of one villager Somaji C. Sadmek on the Hedri-Surjagad Road on September 19 (2021), attacks on a security post in Gatta on May 11 and other major crimes.

Considering their series of violent acts and other offences, the Maharashtra Police had announced a reward of Rs two Lakh each on their heads, Goyal added.

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