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Friday,14-May-2021

Crime

Sub-inspector shoots self outside Uttar Pradesh Vidhan Sabha

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A sub-inspector committed suicide near the parking stand of Uttar Pradesh Vidhan Sabha on Thursday, shooting himself with his service revolver.

Sub-inspector Nirmal Chaubey was posted at the Banthra police station on the outskirts of the state capital and was on duty at the Vidhan Sabha during the ongoing Assembly session.

Chaubey was rushed to the hospital where he succumbed to his injury. A suicide note was found in his pocket in which he stated that he was ending his life due to illness. In the note, he requested Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath to take care of his children.

Lucknow Police Commissioner D.K. Thakur said that Chaubey, 53, shot himself at around 3.30 p.m. on Thursday and was immediately rushed to the hospital where he died.

Thakur said the suicide note is being investigated and the deceased’s family has been informed.

Further investigation is underway.

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Crime

Jail warden in UP faces action for chaining nonagenarian

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The Yogi Adityanath government has suspended the Etah jail warden Ashok Yadav after a video showed a 90-year-old prisoner chained to a hospital bed in the jail.

A departmental inquiry has also been ordered against him.

A photograph of the old man, who had been hospitalized after he complained of respiratory problem, had gone viral earlier in the day.

DG jails, Anand Kumar had sought a report from the supervisory officer.

Giving information about the action on the Twitter handle of DG prisons, Kumar said that no officer or employee will be spared.

The prisoner’s chains have been removed.

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Crime

Navneet Kalra denied anticipatory bail in O2 concentrator case

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Navneet-Kalra

A Delhi court on Thursday declined to grant anticipatory bail to businessman Navneet Kalra in connection with the oxygen concentrator black marketing case registered by Delhi Police.

Additional sessions judge, Saket court, Sandeep Garg passed the order rejecting anticipatory bail to Kalra.

Senior advocate Vikas Pahwa, representing Kalra, had argued that his client had only carried out a legitimate transaction of import and customs authorities were activated, and the customs was aware of the transaction. “The GST was deposited with the government. Invoices were given and returns were filed,” Pahwa had contended before the court.

However, according to the prosecution, Kalra, along with other co-accused, hatched a conspiracy to wrongfully make money by inducing the public to buy oxygen concentrators from him at an “exorbitant rate”. Delhi police had opposed his anticipatory bail plea stating that the investigation was at a very early stage, and it required Kalra’s custodial interrogation to unearth his relationship with other parties.

Kalra’s counsel had argued that all rules were complied and the transactions of sale were through banking channels. He further added that oxygen concentrators are not cosmetic, not luxury, instead it was used when somebody is medically unfit. “When selling through banking channels, where is the offence”, Kalra’s counsel had submitted.

The prosecution had argued that no anticipatory bail could be granted to “influential persons” who could tamper with evidence. The prosecution further argued Kalra made a lot of money by inducing the needy public to believe that his oxygen concentrators were premium, and also cited a report from Sri Ram laboratory, that the sample of oxygen concentrator was of poor quality.

Kalra’s counsel had pointed out that there was no MRP fixed by the government till date, therefore the prosecution assertion that the price at which his client sold oxygen concentrator was exorbitant, was not correct. “We could not find a single notification, which fixes the price of oxygen concentrators”, said Kalra’s counsel.

He further added that his client was being “framed” based on social media content and he was being made a scapegoat to divert attention from more pressing issues. “It is being deliberately done. A campaign is going on against me”, added Kalra’s counsel.

Police have also alleged that through social media posts, it has come to notice that Kalra had collected advance payments from several persons who required oxygen concentrators, but he kept postponing the supply and increased the price.

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Business

Mumbai court slaps notice to attach diamantaire Nirav Modi’s assets

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Nirav Modi. (File Photo: IANS)

Fresh legal troubles are brewing in Mumbai for the fugitive diamantaire Nirav D. Modi, currently seeking bail and battling extradition proceedings in a UK Court, officials said here on Thursday.

A Special Court under the Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2018 has slapped notices to Nirav Modi and his sister Purvi Mehta — who turned approver five months ago — besides his group companies, ordering them to appear before the Special Judge V.C. Barde on June 11, in Mumbai.

Barde has also asked them to show cause why the Special Court should not attach the properties and assets of the two siblings and the other group companies under the law, in a money-laundering case filed by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in early 2018.

The development comes exactly three-and-half-years after Nirav Modi, several of his family members, his maternal uncle Mehul C. Choksi and others were accused of perpetrating a stunning fraud of around Rs 14,000-crore in the Punjab National Bank (PNB).

Even before PNB admitted to the fraud and lodged a formal police complaint in January 2018, it emerged that Nirav Modi, Mehul Choksi and others had already fled the country as the Central Bureau of Investigation and ED launched their independent probes.

Besides the ‘Mama-Bhanja’ duo, Modi’s group companies like Stellar Diamonds, Firestar International Ltd, Radashir Jewelery Co. Pvt. Ltd., Firestar Trading Pvt. Ltd., Solar Exports, Diamonds R Us, Firestar Diamond International Ltd., Mac Business Enterprises Pvt. Ltd., Bentley Properties Pvt. Ltd. and Nirav Modi Trust, were under the scanner of the CBI-ED sleuths and are named in the Special Court’s latest notices.

Shortly afterwards, in Feb. 2018, a Mumbai Magistrate ordered a non-bailable warrant against Modi, in June 2018, the InterPol issued a Red Corner Notice, followed by India’s request in Aug. 2018 to the UK authorities seeking his extradition back home.

It was in March 2019 that a massive furore erupted in India after Nirav Modi was found sauntering on a London street and the Indian authorities went after him with renewed vigour, resulting in his arrest that same month.

As he remains in jail, a UK Court in Feb. 2021 cleared his extradition to India to face charges of bank frauds, money-laundering, etc, even as Purvi and her husband Maiank Mehta turned approvers in the case in January 2021.

Incidentally, in the past couple of years, the ED-CBI has managed to recover small sums by auctioning off Nirav Modi’s assets like half-a-dozen luxury vehicles, designer bags, high-value wristwatches, rare paintings, artworks and other stuff, while his deluxe bungalow in Alibaug, Raigad was attached and demolished in March 2019.

After the PNB scam broke out, over the next couple of years, several other nationalised banks slowly came into the open and reveal how Modi-Choksi had duped and dumped them in various loan accounts.

Meanwhile, in early 2019 it came to light Choksi had acquired the citizenship of Antigua & Barbuda Island in the West Indies in November 2017, and is currently embroiled in a legal tangle over his citizenship and related issues.

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