Connect with us
Breaking News

National News

SC says freebies to influence voters’ serious issue, asks Centre for way to curb it



The Supreme Court on Tuesday flagged the issue of political parties promising freebies to influence voters as serious, and asked the Central government to examine the matter so as to control promises of freebies to induce the electorate.

A bench, headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana asked the Centre, to find out from the Finance Commission, if there is a possibility of curbing state governments and political parties from promising and distributing irrational freebies to induce voters.

Initially, the bench queried Additional Solicitor General K.M. Nataraj to find out Centre’s stand on the issue.

“You take a stand whether freebies should continue or not,” the bench, also comprising Justices Krishna Murari and Hima Kohli, told Nataraj, representing the Central government.

On the other hand, counsel representing the Election Commission submitted that it was held in previous judgments that a manifesto was part of the promises of a political party.

At this, the bench replied: “We are on freebies to bribe the electorate. Now if you say it’s hands off for you, then what is the purpose of the Election Commission of India?”

In April this year, the EC told the Supreme Court that offering freebies either before or after the elections is a policy decision of the political party, and it cannot regulate state policies and decisions taken by the parties.

The EC counsel suggested that the Central government could bring a law to deal with the issue, but Nataraj suggested that it falls under the domain of the EC.

Taking exceptions to Nataraj’s submissions, the bench asked the Central government to take a stand on the matter.

“Why don’t you say that you have nothing to do with it and the ECI has to take a call? I’m asking if the government of India is considering whether it’s a serious issue or not?

“Why are you hesitating to take a stand? You take a stand and then we’ll decide whether these freebies are to be continued or not,” it told Nataraj.

At this juncture, the bench turned to senior advocate Kapil Sibal, who was present in the courtroom for another matter. “Mr. Sibal is here as a senior parliamentarian. What is your view?…. How to control these freebies?”

Sibal said freebies were a “serious issue” and it would be not fair to put the liability on the Central government. He said this issue had to be tackled at the state government level and suggested tapping into the expertise of the Finance Commission.

Citing that the Finance Commission is an independent body, Sibal added that while making allocations to the states, it can examine debts of each individual state and could scrutinise whether offers of freebies are viable, or not.

The bench then told Nataraj: “Please find out from the Finance Commission. Will list this sometime next week… what is the authority to initiate debate…”.

The top court scheduled the matter for further hearing on August 3.

Petitioner advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay termed the issue serious and submitted that EC should bar the state and national political parties from giving such things. “There should be some reasonable promise,” said Upadhyay citing a total debt of Rs 6.5 lakh crore. “We’re on our way to becoming Sri Lanka,” he said.

The top court was hearing a PIL by Upadhyay against the announcements made by political parties for inducing voters, through freebies, during elections.

In an affidavit, the ECI said: “Offering/distribution of any freebies either before or after the election is a policy decision of the party concerned and whether such policies are financially viable or its adverse effect on the economic health of the state is a question that has to be considered and decided by the voters of the state.”

It added: “The Election Commission cannot regulate state policies and decisions which may be taken by the winning party when they form the government. Such an action without enabling provisions in the law, would be an overreach of powers.”

Upadhyay’s PIL claimed that the promise or distribution of irrational freebies from public funds before polls shakes the roots of a free and fair election, and vitiates the purity of the election process. The plea sought a direction from the top court to declare that the promise of irrational freebies, which are not for public purposes, from public funds before election, violates Articles 14, 162, 266(3), and 282 of the Constitution.

The plea contended that a condition should be imposed on the political party that they would not promise or distribute irrational freebies from the public fund. The EC responded that it “may result in a situation where the political parties will lose their recognition even before they display their electoral performance”. The top court had issued notice on the plea on January 25.


Zomato Shares Hit 52 Week High Today,Back Near IPO Price After Two Years




The shares of Zomato Ltd record a one year high with stock gained nearly 53 per cent in the last 52 week. The stock of Zomato is witnessing a surge of Rs 77.35 a share, a level last seen on April 26, 2022.

In the end of March 2023, Zomato share dropped down at Rs 50 apiece. The stock was trading at Rs 77 on BSE at 1pm, up by 1.64 per cent from the previous close.

Since March, the stock gain a rise of nearly 53 per cent. It is still down 52 percent from its record closing high of Rs 160.30 hit on November 15, 2021.

After entering the new financial year, the shares of Zomato has increased around Rs 50 to Rs 77 apiece levels. The company shares had started signaling about the end of base building mode in January 2023 when it rebounded from Rs 47 apiece levels and sustained above this fresh bottom made after bouncing back from 52-week lows of Rs 40.60 apiece made in July 2022.

Zomato Ltd Shares

The shares of Zomato on Friday at 3:30pm IST were at Rs 77.90, up by 2.77 per cent.

Continue Reading

National News

Pune News: Big news! Pune IAS officer caught in CBI raid, accepting bribe




Cbi Raid on Ias Officer Dr Anil Ganpatrao Ramod: A big news has come to the fore from Punya. CBI has conducted raids on IAS officers. Dr. Anil Ganpatrao Ramod is an IAS officer and is the Additional Divisional Commissioner of Pune. He has been caught red handed by the CBI accepting the offer.

According to the information received, Anil Ramod, who is facing the highway, would have demanded Lachechi to get the return soon. The complainant would have filed a complaint with the CBI in respect of or. Intervening in the complaint received, the CBI raided and caught Anil Ramode red-handed accepting a bribe of Rs.8 lakh.

Stuck in taking promotion and bribe for two days

Meanwhile, Alikadech Satariat got promoted to the post of Faujdar and got stuck for two days, but while taking the bribe, the police station staff got stuck. Or a greedy police officer, taking a bribe of Rs 24,000 to help the accused in the crime of treachery of marriage, caught by the Prohibition Department on a family promise.

Ya Faujdarache Nao Machindra Baburao Sasane Asan Aahe. If the police station accepted the bouquet, the same police station or criminal offense was registered.

And in the second incident, the police station police station’s police officer filed a complaint regarding the property, for not registering the crime, and for not registering the accused, the complainant was fined 20 thousand rupees and then 12 thousand rupees. Either in the case itself or in the form of Bribe, the Prohibitory Department has caught red handed. Nitin Dashrath More, ase ya faujdarache nao aahe.

Continue Reading

National News

Bengal govt challenges Calcutta HC’s twin orders in minor rape-murder case




The West Bengal government on Friday challenged the twin orders of a single-judge bench of the Calcutta High Court in connection to the rape and murder of a minor girl in Kaliganj, North Dinajpur district.

The two orders by the High Court’s single-judge bench of Justice Rajasekhar Mantha have been challenged at the division bench headed by Chief Justice T.S. Sivagnanam and comprising Justice Hiranmay Bhattacharya.

The first order pertains to the formation of a special investigation team to probe the case, while the second is related to Justice Mantha seeking a report from the state’s Home Department on the police allegedly refusing to cooperate with the SIT.

Despite a petition was filed at the High Court demanding a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe in the matter, Justice Mantha constituted the SIT comprising the-then Special Commissioner of Kolkata Police, Damayanti Sen, retired IG Pankaj Dutta, and retired Joint Director of CBI, Upen Biswas.

Justice Mantha and specifically directed the state police to fully cooperate with the SIT.

Sen has however, been transferred from her current posting to a lesser significant post of additional director general (training) of state police.

Justice Mantha’s bench recently received complaints against the state police for not cooperating with the SIT.

Taking strong exceptions, Justice Mantha on Thursday sought a report from the Home Department within seven days.

The rape and murder case took place in April.

Continue Reading