The Maharashtra Congress on Saturday slammed the National Investigation Agency (NIA) for delays in the probe into the planting of a SUV with 20 gelatin sticks near Antilia, the home of industrialist Mukesh Ambani.
“Over 150 days have elapsed and the NIA is granted 30 more days to file its charge-sheet in the case, when the time limit is only 90 days. Why does the NIA need so many extensions,” demanded State Party Spokesperson Sachin Sawant.
Referring to the longwinded probe, he sought to know when the NIA is going to nab the alleged mastermind in the sensational case that broke out on February 25.
“When will the NIA reveal the real motive behind keeping the explosive-laden vehicle (SUV Scorpio) near the Antillia building,” Sawant demanded.
The SUV was found abandoned by Mumbai Police near the Antilia building on February 25 and 20 gelatin sticks and a purported threat note to the Ambani family was recovered from it.
The case took a new twist when the vehicle owner, a businessman Mansukh Hiran’s body was found in the marshes of Thane Creek on March 5, triggering a massive upheaval in the police force and the political setup.
This week, the Special NIA Court granted the agency another 30 days’ time to file its charge-sheet in the case.
Sawant’s attack on NIA came barely a couple of days after he targeted the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for dithering on the probe into the death case of Bollywood actor, the late Sushant Singh Rajput, a year after the federal agency took over the case.
Phone tapping case: Raj CM Ashok Gehlot’s OSD questioned by Delhi Crime Branch
Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot’s OSD Lokesh Sharma has been interrogated for about two and a half hours by the Delhi Crime Branch in the famous case of phone tapping.
The interrogation happened on Monday. The official sources confirmed that over a dozen questions were asked to Sharma.
In March 2021, a case was registered against Lokesh Sharma in the phone tapping case under several sections on the basis of a complaint filed by the Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, who had alleged that his image had been tarnished via the audio leaked by the OSD.
Lokesh Sharma had challenged this FIR in the Delhi High Court and got relief from arrest from the High Court till January 13.
This phone tapping controversy of Rajasthan was reported in July 2020 during the rebellion by some Congress leaders after a dispute between the Sachin Pilot and Ashok Gehlot groups came to the fore. At that time, a purported audio clip of a phone conversation between Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and Congress leaders had surfaced. The audio was leaked to the media after which the Union Minister had filed a complaint to the then Delhi Police Commissioner through email.
During interrogation, the crime branch asked Sharma about how the clip, which went viral, reached him. Lokesh Sharma was given the notice for questioning three times in the past by the Crime Branch.
4 students of TN medical college suspended over ragging charges
Four third-year MBBS students of the Dharmapuri Government Medical College in Tamil Nadu were suspended from attending classes after a second-year student attempted to commit suicide after being subjected to alleged ragging.
The college also relieved two hostel wardens of duty citing dereliction of duty and failure to protect the student from being ragged.
However, parents and students have expressed resentment over the suspension of the accused had brutally ragged the second-year student.
They cited the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Ragging Act 1997 that provided punishment not only to the offenders but also to the college authorities who failed to take action against those involved in ragging.
Senthilnathan, a parent of a second-year MBBS student at the Madras Government Medical college told IANS: “Ragging is a punishable act with imprisonment for a term which may extend up to two years and shall be liable to a fine which may extend to Rs 10,000 under Section 4 of the Act. Then why is the Dharmapuri Medical College authorities not raising a proper complaint and make the offenders pay for the deed?”
Authorities of Dharmapuri Government Medical College were not available for comments.
The 19-year-old male student who attempted suicide has, however, come out of the critical situation and his parents have taken him to his native place, Rasipuram in Namakkal district.
Although, the teen had lodged a formal complaint against the four third-year students for ragging him, which he withdrew later.
R. Padmanabhan, Director of Socio-Economic Development Foundation (SEDF), a think tank based out of Madurai, told IANS: “India is not ruled by British and this is a free country and there are stringent laws against ragging in place. I don’t know why the authorities have not lodged a formal complaint with the police as the Tamil Nadu Prohibition Act of 1997 provides two years imprisonment, a fine of Rs 10,000 and even Supreme Court has come down heavily against ragging. The suspension for four ragging offenders for seven days is too little punishment in a situation wherein a second-year MBBS student attempt suicide.”
Criticisms have come from several corners on the minor punishment meted out to the students who have indulged in ragging of the second-year student.
Dr. Padmavathy, former head of the department of community medicine of a government medical college from Chennai, told IANS: “It is unfortunate that ragging and sadism are still continuing in medical colleges of Tamil Nadu. To my knowledge, the student who was subjected to ragging hails from a remote area of Namakkal and would have had a lot of aspirations while joining a government medical college and if he tried to kill himself that means he was driven to the edge. The offenders must be strongly punished and the legal course should be taken to prevent such actions in college campuses in future.”
JNUSU demands reconstruction of Babri Masjid, stages protest
A protest march was carried out by the Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union (JNUSU) inside the campus demanding reconstruction of the demolished Babri Masjid in Ayodhya.
The protest march was staged on Monday night to mark the demolition anniversary. The students gathered at a site holding placards, shouting slogans, and later they took out the march inside the campus. The student leaders also made speeches demanding reconstruction of the mosque.
The JNU administration had recently warned against holding the protest, but the student union still held the protest. On Sunday, the student wing also organised a show at the campus in which a movie based on the Babri Masjid demolition was shown. The admin had asked the students not to telecast any such film otherwise strict action would be taken.
The protest march, which was carried out on Monday evening, ended at the Chandrabhaga Hostel where the student leaders made speeches.
Saket Moon, vice president of the JNUSU said that with the reconstruction of the Babri Masjid justice will be delivered.
Aishe Ghosh, the JNUSU president said that after Babri Masjid, the next target of the BJP is Kashi and they (BJP) have started working on it.
“We are remembering Baba Saheb on this day. We are also condemning the killing of civilians in Nagaland. BJP and RSS haven’t done anything in the name of development, but they are dividing us in the name of religion, law and order is crippling,” she said.
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