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Wednesday,27-October-2021

Crime

Telangana Congress chief A. Revanth Reddy placed under house arrest

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Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) chief A. Revanth Reddy was placed under house arrest by the police here on Monday to prevent him from visiting the government lands at Kokapet which were auctioned last week.

Police personnel were deployed at Revanth Reddy’s house in Banjara Hills early morning to stop him from leaving for Kokapet area.

The opposition party alleged that its several other leaders were either placed under house arrest or were arrested while heading for Kokapet.

Alleging corruption in auction of Kokapet lands, Revanth Reddy had called for protest at Kokapet.

Meanwhile, some Congress leaders managed to reach near Kokapet lands but police tried to stop them from staging protest. Congress leader Mahesh Goud fell down in the melee. Police arrested him, Kodanda Reddy and other leaders.

Revanth Reddy has alleged a massive scam to the tune of Rs 1,000 crore in the Kokapet land auction. He demanded that the state government re-auction these lands under the ‘Swiss Challenge’ to ensure that the state could generate good revenue through a more transparent method.

The TPCC chief said that contrary to the claims that international players were involved in the bidding, all those who bagged these land parcels were either benamis of Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao or those who have close links with him.

He had said that he would raise the issue in the Parliament.

The government on July 15 auctioned 49.949 acres of land for Rs 2,000 crore.

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Crime

NCB team questions Wankhede for over four hours

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 In an unusual turn of events, a Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) vigilance team from New Delhi on Wednesday questioned the agency’s Mumbai Zonal Director Sameer Wankhede for nearly four and a half hours at its Bandra camp office, a top official said.

The team leader Gyaneshwar Singh said that they have collected lot of documents and other evidences from him and he has submitted his version in the matter.

“If needed, we shall probe further and ask for more documents in the case,” Singh said this evening.

Simultaneously, he said the NCB vigilance team has requested the other two “Panch-Wintesses” “Prabhakar Sail-ji and Kiran Gosavi-ji” to appear before them to record their statements.

“We have tried to serve them the summonses at their known addresses, but we could not do so. We appeal through the media. They should both appear before us in the next two days and record their statement – especially Prabhakar Sail-ji whose affidavit (October 23) has resulted in this enquiry,” Singh said.

The NCB team plans to question Sail for his statements claiming Gosavi – currently absconding – was the conduit for an alleged Rs 18 crore extortion bid from Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan to get his son Aryan released.

Sail also said that of this amount, Rs 8 crore was allegedly meant to be given to Wankhede, currently in the eye of a huge storm with a series of charges hurled against him.

The NCB probe comes as an offshoot into the NCB’s swoop on an alleged rave party aboard a cruise ship on October 2 in which 8 youngsters from the entertainment industry, including Aryan Khan, were nabbed, sparking off a huge controversy.

In a related development, businessman H.B. Bafna has claimed that his photo has been circulated as that of Sam D’Souza, one of the players in the alleged extortion bid, circulated by Sail.

Bafna has expressed fear for his life and sought a probe into how his photo came to be released as that of D’Souza on October 24.

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Crime

Aryan Khan bail plea adjourned till Thursday

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 The Bombay High Court on Wednesday adjourned till Thursday afternoon the ongoing hearing in the bail plea of Aryan Khan and others, whose arguments were completed.

Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh, appearing for the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB), will respond to the defence arguments at 3 p.m. on Thursday.

Accordingly, Aryan, Arbaaz Merchant, and Munmun Dhamecha will spend another night in judicial custody.

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Tejpal case: Bombay HC rejects plea for in camera hearing of appeal

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 The Bombay High Court in Goa on Wednesday turned down, for the time being, a plea made by former Tehelka editor-in-chief Tarun Tejpal to hold the appeal proceedings in the rape case filed against him in camera.

Tejpal’s counsel also made a plea to a bench of Justices Revati Dere and M.S. Jawalkar challenging the maintainability of the appeal petition, which was filed by the state government, after he was acquitted by a local trial court of rape charges in May this year.

The defence had argued for the appeal proceedings in camera, citing the fact that the case had been heard in camera during the trial stage too. However, the bench said that it was disinclined to consider the plea “at this stage”.

It is expected to hear Tejpal’s plea challenging the maintainability of the appeal on November 16.

“We have raised that squarely that the maintainability of the appeal is defective, not in consonance with requirement of 378 CrPC,” Tejpal’s advocate Amit Desai told the court on Wednesday, adding that procedures had been bypassed by the prosecution in its hurry to file an appeal.

Solicitor General of India Tushar Mehta, who is holding brief for the prosecution, has challenged the claim made by Desai vis-a-vis maintainability of the petition, adding that he would submit a detailed response on November 16, when the next hearing has been scheduled.

A junior colleague at Tehelka had accused Tejpal of allegedly raping her twice at a five star resort in Goa in 2013.

In May this year, a Goa court had acquitted Tejpal of all charges levelled against under Sections 376 (rape), 341 (wrongful restraint), 342 (wrongful confinement) 354A (sexual harassment) and 354B (criminal assault), of the Indian Penal Code, following which the the Goa government had filed an appeal against the acquittal before the Bombay High Court.

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