In a relief to Times Now journalist Navika Kumar, the Supreme Court on Monday granted her interim protection from any coercive action in multiple FIRs already registered or future cases, in connection with remarks made by suspended BJP leader Nupur Sharma on Prophet Muhammed during a TV debate.
Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, representing the senior journalist, submitted before a bench comprising Justices Krishna Murari and Hima Kohli that his client did not say anything offensive during the debate on the Gyanvapi mosque, instead a participant said something, which was responded to by another participant. Rohatgi emphasized that his client doused the fire by saying we have to go by the Constitution.
He further argued that the woman who made the statement is facing flak in multiple FIRs, and his client is also facing several FIRs. “She has five or six FIRs in Kolkata alone. First FIR came to be lodged in Delhi,” said Rohatgi.
Senior advocate Maneka Guruswamy, representing the West Bengal government, contended that FIRs annexed with the plea were not the right ones as those did not concern the particular speech. Rohatgi questioned the interest of the West Bengal government in the matter.
After hearing arguments, the top court said as an interim measure, no coercive action should be taken against the petitioner in the FIRs/complaints lodged or future cases, which may be lodged in connection with the programme on May 26. The top court also issued notice to West Bengal, Delhi, and police of other states, and sought their response within two weeks.
The top court, on July 19, had ordered that no coercive action can be taken against Sharma in FIRs already registered and also future FIRs in connection with her remarks during the debate. A bench comprising Justices Surya Kant and J.B. Pardiwala said: “Meanwhile, as an interim measure it is directed that no coercive shall be taken against Nupur Sharma pursuant to the impugned FIRs.”
Nupur Sharma had moved the Supreme Court seeking stay on her arrest in the nine FIRs against her for her remarks on Prophet Muhammad and also sought clubbing/quashing of the FIRs with the FIR registered at Delhi.
On July 1, the top court had minced no words in slamming Sharma, whose remarks on Prophet Muhammad sparked a controversy. The top court said her loose tongue has set the entire country on fire and her irresponsible remarks shows that she is “obstinate and arrogant”.
Uttarkashi avalanche: 26 bodies recovered so far, three still missing
A total of 26 bodies have been recovered so far from the site of an avalanche that struck the Draupadi’s Danda-2 peak in Uttarkashi. A search operation is on for three more missing persons from the team of trainee mountaineers from the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering (NIM).
Four out of the 26 bodies recovered were moved to the Army Helipad in Harshil, and then taken to the Uttarkashi District Hospital by an ambulance.
Officials said that two Cheetah helicopters are being used for the rescue operation, adding that attempts were being made to transfer the bodies to the Matli helipad which failed due to bad weather, following which the chopper with the bodies was made to land on the Harshil army helipad.
Four bodies were recovered on October 4, 17 on October 6 and seven on Friday by the rescue team.
Delhi Police arrests juvenile tasked to kill Salman Khan
The Special Cell of the Delhi Police has apprehended two key members of an international terror module, including a juvenile, who were wanted in a number of terror cases — the RPG attack incident at the Intelligence Headquarters in Punjab’s Mohali, plotting to kill Bollywood actor Salman Khan & others.
Special Commissioner Police, Special Cell, H.G.S. Dhaliwal, said the apprehended accused were important nodes of the joint terror network of Pakistan-based Khalistani terrorist Harvinder Singh alias Rinda and Canada-based gangster turned terrorist, Lakhbir Singh Landa.
The arrested accused, Arshdeep, was wanted in the IED recovery case of Shahabad, Kurukshetra and IED recovery case of police station Sirhali in Punjab’s Tarn Taran.
The official said the juvenile was also wanted in the murder of a builder, Sanjay Biyani, which took place on April 5 in Nanded city of Maharashtra, and in the murder of gangster Rana Kandowalia, outside a private hospital in Amritsar on August 4.
“The apprehended JCL has also disclosed the task given to him along with absconding Deepak Surakhpur and Monu Dagar (in jail) by Lawrence Bishnoi regarding the elimination of film actor Salman Khan. While the JCL was being handled by Rinda, Arshdeep was being handled by Landa Harike,” the official said.
How they were caught
Dhaliwal said that they had been working to nab the culprits for a long time. They identified people who were providing logistics support to the accused. Finally, both the accused, Arshdeep and the juvenile, were arrested from Jamnagar in Gujarat.
Rocket Launcher attack
On May 9, a rocket-propelled grenade was fired at Punjab Police’s Intelligence Headquarters in Mohali. During the course of the investigation, it was established that the attack was a conspiracy of Babbar Khalsa International (BKI), backed by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and local gangsters.
The juvenile held by the Special Cell was also involved in the conspiracy. The police has learnt that the attack was conspired by gangster turned ISI stooge Harvinder Singh alias Rinda.
Another fugitive gangster, Lakhbir Singh Landa had joined hands with Harvinder Singh alias Rinda. They were sharing manpower, logistics and resources. Rinda’s name had already cropped up in the grenade attack at the Crime Investigation Agency (CIA) office in Nawanshahr and in the arrest of four suspected Pakistan-linked terrorists in Haryana’s Karnal earlier this year.
Salman Khan murder plot
The official said that the juvenile was involved in the conspiracy along with other accused to carry out an attack on Salman Khan. They couldn’t conduct a recce due to some reasons. Later, the juvenile was asked to kill Rana Kandowalia, a businessman.
Dhaliwal said that they will move a plea before the court with a request to try the juvenile as an adult. The official said that when the juvenile is over 16, the court can decide whether to try him as an adult or not.
K’taka madrasa incident: 4 arrested, Muslims call off protest
Karnataka police on Friday arrested four persons in connection with the incident of Hindu activists barging inside the historical Mahmud Gawan madrasa in Bidar city and performing puja.
The Muslim organisations, which had earlier called for a protest after Friday prayers condemning police inaction, have called off the protest following the arrests.
Of the nine accused named in the FIR, Munna, Naresh, Yallalinga and Prakash have been arrested. However, the Karnataka police is on a high alert in Bidar district and security around the Mahmud Gawan madrasa and Masjid has been tightened.
Photos and videos of the incident have gone viral on social media.
According to police, a group of Hindu activists who participated in the Dussehra procession in Bidar, barged inside the premises of the historical Mahmud Gawan madrasa on Wednesday night.
Considered as a heritage building, the madrasa is maintained by the Archaeological Survey of India. It was built in AD 1460 and features among the important monuments in India.
While breaking inside the protected monument by breaking open locks, the activists raised “Jai Sri Ram” and “Jai Hindu Rashtra” slogans and conducted worship according to Hindu rituals at one of the corners of the building, police said.
The photos and video show a big group standing on the steps of the monument. The police have lodged nine cases in connection with the incident.
Protesting against the incidents, the Muslim organisations demanded action against the accused and had warned of a huge protest after Friday prayers.
Condemning the incident, AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi said that extremists broke the gate lock and attempted to desecrate historic Mahmud Gawan masjid and mosque. Addressing Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai and Bidar police, he asked, “How can you allow this to happen? BJP is promoting such activity only to demean Muslims,” he alleged.
A manhunt has been launched for the other accused.
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