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Crime

Raja Singh sent to jail as police invoke Preventive Detention Act

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Suspended BJP MLA T. Raja Singh Lodh was sent to jail on Thursday after Hyderabad Police arrested him and invoked Preventive Detention (PD) Act.

Police took the MLA into custody from his residence in Mangalhat amid tight security and continuing protests for his re-arrest for allegedly making derogatory comments about Prophet Muhammad.

Raja Singh, who has been arrested for second time in three days, was later shifted to Cherlapally Jail on the city outskirts.

The police announced that it has invoked PD Act against Raja Singh, a rowdy sheeter of Mangalhat Police Station, on the orders of Hyderabad Police Commissioner C.V. Anand.

According to the police, Raja Singh has been habitually delivering provocative and inflammatory speeches and driving a wedge between communities leading to public disorder.

A total of 101 criminal cases registered against him since 2004. He was involved in 18 communal offences in the limits of different police stations in Hyderabad.

Raja Singh on August 22 posted online an offensive video against Prophet Mohammad with an intention to provoke all sections of people and thereby cause breach of peace and public tranquility, said the police statement.

When he was being taken into custody from his residence on August 23, Raja Singh stated that police are making efforts to remove his video from YouTube but that will not deter him from posting his further speeches and videos on this issue.

“Any venomous hate speech has the potential of provoking individuals to commit acts of riot, indiscriminate violence, terrorism etc. Offensive speech has real and devastating effects on people’s lives and risks their health and safety and severely affects fraternity, dignity of individuals, unity and national integration and also offends the fundamental rights guaranteed under Articles 19 and 21 of the Constitution of India,” said police.

“When the video went viral protests have erupted in different parts of Hyderabad City and others parts of Telangana state and drove a wedge between communities and disturbed the peaceful nature of Hyderabad and Telangana state,” it added.

Sensing danger to the life and properties in the hands of the protesters, people got panicky and closed their shops and establishments. The entire population of the city and the state went into grip of fear and shock by his activity, police said.

According to police, by his blasphemous utterances, Raja Singh has been continuously creating hatred and ill-will between major communities resulting in widespread unrest among the people in Hyderabad and the state, thereby adversely affecting the maintenance of public order.

He has been continuously causing widespread fear, unrest and panic among general public for a long period of time by committing such offences and acting in a manner prejudicial to the maintenance of public order apart from disturbing the peace, tranquility and communal harmony in the society.

A few minutes before his arrest, the MLA released a video blaming Telangana minister K.T. Rama Rao for communally tense situation in Hyderabad by allowing comedian Munawar Faruqui to perform in Hyderabad.

Raja Singh was arrested hours after issuing him noticed in two old cases.

The controversial MLA was arrested a couple of hours after police officers from Shaninayathgunj and Mangalhat police station issued the notices under Section 41-A of the Criminal Procedure Code.

Both the notices were issued in connection with the old cases.

Mangalhat police issued notice with regard to a complaint booked in February for threatening voters of Uttar Pradesh through a video which had gone viral during assembly elections in that state.

A case was registered against him on the direction of the Election Commission of India.

Shahinayathgunj police issued notice with regard to a case of making provocative speeches at Begum Bazar in April.

Following massive protests over his offensive remarks against the Prophet, the police had arrested Raja Singh on Tuesday. He, however, was granted bail by a city court the same day.

Meanwhile, police tightened the security in Mangalhat and surrounding areas following Raja Singh’s arrest.

Traders in some areas downed shutters to protest against his arrest.

Additional police forces were deployed in sensitive areas to maintain law and order.

Crime

Mumbai: Minor boy detained for raping 5-year-old girl in Nagpada; victim to get free education till 10th std

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A minor boy was detained for allegedly raping a 5-year-old girl in Nagpada and sent to a juvenile correction centre.

He was detained within six hours of the crime.

Free education till 10th standard for victim

The Nagpada police officials have collected Rs 1.10 lakh for the victim and have made provisions for giving her free education till the 10th standard.

A case has been registered under sections of IPC and POCSO.

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Crime

Teachers scam: WhatsApp chat hinting question paper leak recovered

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 The Enforcement Directorate (ED), probing the multi-crore teachers’ recruitment scam, has recovered WhatsApp chats hinting at possible advance leaking of question papers to select candidates who took the written examination for primary teachers’ posts in West Bengal in 2016.

Sources said that the selective leaking of question papers were mainly done by the youth Trinamool Congress leader, Kuntal Ghosh, who was arrested by the ED from his residence on January 21.

The probe agency has also recovered Whatsapp chats indicating that Ghosh enjoyed the patronage of former state education minister and Trinamool Congress secretary general Partha Chatterjee.

From the documents seized from Ghosh’s residence, the central agency officials have also recovered copies of the admit cards of certain candidates who appeared for the recruitment examination for primary teachers in 2016.

The ED sleuths have come across the names of 35 individuals who secured jobs as teachers in state- run schools by paying money to the arrested youth leader and all of them are currently employed with different schools. Each and every one of them will be questioned to take the investigation forward.

“The recruitment scam seems to be in multiple layers, which again have sub-layers involving multiple players and multiple angles. The uncovering of one layer is leading to other layers. That’s why the investigation process is getting prolonged,” said a legal associate of ED.

The fact that question papers were leaked to select candidates was established after the ED sleuths noticed that some extremely below-average candidates, as per their academic records, scored exorbitantly in the recruitment examination.

Sources said that the marks secured in their academic examinations did not justify their scores in their optical mark recognition (OMR) sheets.

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Crime

Israeli fighter jets strike Gaza in response to rockets firing

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Israeli fighter jets on Friday carried out a series of airstrikes on facilities belonging to militant groups in the Gaza Strip in response to rockets fired from the coastal enclave, witnesses said.

Israeli army drones and fighter jets were heard buzzing in the air, and several explosions were heard in central Gaza Strip, the witnesses told Xinhua news agency.

They added that more than 14 missiles were fired at a military post that belonged to Gaza militant groups.

Palestinian medical sources said that no injuries were reported during the strikes that mainly targeted posts and facilities that belong to the Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ).

The airstrikes were in response to the firing of two rockets at southern Israel, said a spokesman from the Jewish state’s army.

No group has claimed responsibility for firing the rockets, which was a response to the killing of nine Palestinians during an Israeli raid in the Jenin refugee camp, deemed to be the most deadly in nearly two decades.

During the Israeli airstrikes on Friday, militants in the Hamas-ruled coastal enclave also fired at least five rockets at southern Israeli communities close to the borders with the Gaza Strip and anti-craft missiles were fired at Israeli fighter jets by Hamas militants, sources close to Hamas security told Xinhua.

Media outlets in Gaza quoted an Egyptian source as saying that Egyptian intelligence is in intensive contact with the Palestinian factions to prevent an escalation in Gaza.

More than 170 Palestinians were killed in the West Bank in 2022, and at least 29 have been killed in January this year, according to figures from the Palestinian Health Ministry.

According to the UN, 2022 was the deadliest year for Palestinians since 2006.

The tensions have been further aggravated since Israel’s most right-wing government, headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, took office last month.

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