Bombay High Court.
The Supreme Court on Thursday declined to entertain a plea filed by ARG Outlier Media Private Ltd, which owns the Republic Media network, challenging a “colonial era” law to curb free speech, and asked it to move the Bombay High Court.
A bench, headed by Chief Justice S.A. Bobde and comprising Justices A.S. Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian, said the entire cause of action originates in Maharashtra and asked the petitioner why it has come to the top court, instead of going to the High Court.
The observation from the top court came while hearing a plea by the media organisation challenging the validity of the Police (Incitement to Disaffection) Act, 1922. The news channel and its employees were booked by the Mumbai Police for allegedly defaming the police service and attempting to cause disaffection among the members of the police. The case was registered on complaint filed by sub-inspector of the special branch.
Senior advocate Siddharth Bhatnagar, representing the media company, submitted before that a colonial era law is being used to curb freedom of speech. Republic TV had called the FIR as an assault on media rights.
Declining to entertain the plea, the bench told him why hadn’t he gone to the Bombay High Court as Bhatnagar insisted that the top court should hear the matter.
“Learned counsel for the petitioners seeks leave of this Court to withdraw the writ petition with liberty to approach the High Court. The writ petition is, accordingly, dismissed as withdrawn with liberty as prayed for,” said the top court in its order.
The FIR had said that the accused broadcast a report alleging ‘revolt’ against Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh by senior police officers. The police have termed this as incitement to disaffection among members of the police force and defamation of the force.
Bhopal man arrested for raping 13-yr-old girl
Bhopal Police on Monday arrested an accused for allegedly raping a 13-year-old girl. The matter came to light after a police complaint was registered. The accused has been arrested under sections 376 and 501 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
According to the police, the accused is known to the victim. He runs a grocery store where the victim used to visit to purchase goods.
According to the victim’s complaint lodged at Bhopal’s Sukhi Sevaniya police station, the accused invited the victim to his home on Saturday and allegedly raped her. He also threatened her of serious consequences if she told anyone about the incident.
However, after another person who knew the victim, came to know about the incident, she narrated the entire story to her parents.
Subsequently, they lodged a police compliant on Monday, a senior police official, Vijay Bahadur Singh, from Sukhi Sevaniya police station, told IANS.
“Further, investigation in the matter is underway,” he said.
Sold for child labour, UP boy rescued from Amritsar
Abducted by a truck driver and sold to a farmer for child labour in Amritsar, a 14-year-old boy finally managed to escape and was rescued by the ChildLine from the Amritsar railway station.
Satyendra, 14, was kidnapped three years ago by a truck driver who sold him to a farmer in Amritsar, police said.
Narrating his ordeal, Satyendra said, “There were around six other teenage boys from different states who were brought to the barn for labour. Our job was to feed cattle and keep the barn clean.
“We were given new identities and converted to other religions. I was called Shiva and was asked to wear a turban. They used to assault me and keep me starved if I insisted on leaving,” he told reporters after he was returned to his parents in Itaunja, on the outskirts of Lucknow on Wednesday.
Satyendra said that he was taken to Katrayaina Kala village which is on the outskirts of Amritsar city. “We were shackled before we went to sleep,” he said.
Sumit Yadav, Satyendra’s cousin who went to Amritsar to get him, said, “Itauja police did not lodge FIR even after a written complaint. For months, police kept on misleading the family and evaded questions about their son’s whereabouts. They never made an attempt to search for him.”
UP court convicts 4 for planning terror attack
A Chief Judicial Magistrate court in Lucknow has sentenced four accused to five years imprisonment after finding them guilty of planning terror activities and instigating youths to take up arms.
A fine of Rs 14,000 on each of the convicts has also been imposed by the court on Wednesday.
All the four persons were arrested by the UP ATS from different parts of the country in 2017.
Out of the four convicts, Mohd Faizan and Mohd Nazim are from Bijnor. One of the accused is from West Champaran in Bihar and the other from Unnao in Uttar Pradesh.
According to a statement released by the UP ATS, “The special judge ADJ (3) found them guilty of harming the internal and external security of the nation by fragmenting the unity, integrity and sovereignty of the country.”
According to Additional DG (law and order) Prashant Kumar, “The arrest was a major breakthrough for security agencies as the four accused were nabbed at a time when they were planning terror attacks by involving and instigating youths. They were also found with explosives and illegal weapons.”
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