SUNDAY www.thestatesman.com 21 APRIL 2019 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 16+4 | `5 |LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR ALTHOUGH A RECENT BOLLYWOOD FILM CHRONICLED THE BATTLE OF SARAGARHI, MUCH MORE NEEDS TO BE DONE TO ETCH THIS INCREDIBLE TALE OF VALOUR IN THE HEARTS OF INDIANS P 10 WITH SUMMER HOLIDAYS ROUND THE CORNER, DUBAI OFFERS NUMEROUS OPTIONS TO KEEP YOUR NEAR AND DEAR ONES FULLY ENGAGED AND ENTERTAINED. SO TAKE YOUR PICK P1 WEATHER Mainly clear sky. The maximum and minimum temperatures would be around 37 and 21 degrees Celsius respectively. RAINFALL: Nil RELATIVE HUMIDITY CJI says judiciary is under threat Denies sexual harassment charges; CJI Gogoi alleges conspiracy, says ‘bigger force wants to deactivate the office of CJI’ Max.77% Min. 31% STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 20 APRIL Max: 35.4°C (-3) SUN RISES 05:49 hrs MOON RISES 20:54 hrs Min: 19.8°C (-2) SUN SETS 18:50 hrs MOON SETS 08:00 hrs D TEMPERATURE THUMBNAILS BCCI backs Sourav: BCCI Ombudsman Justice D K Jain has sought a written submission from Sourav Ganguly after Saturday's hearing, even as the Board put its weight firmly behind the former India skipper in the alleged conflict of interest case. Three Bengal-based cricket fans - Bhaswati Shantua, Abhijeet Mukherjee and Ranjit Seal -- had alleged that Ganguly's duty as Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) president is in direct conflict with his dual role as an advisor of IPL franchise Delhi Capitals as well as P15 Cricket Advisory Committee member. Pandya, Rahul fined: Hardik Pandya and K L Rahul were on Saturday fined Rs 20 lakh each by the BCCI Ombudsman D K Jain for their sexist comments on a popular TV show, ending an infamous saga that dented the reputation of the two India cricketers. In the order published on the official BCCI website, Jain wrote that no further action will be taken against Pandya and Rahul, who had missed five ODIs while serving their provisional suspension, and tendered an unconditional apology for making P15 loose comments on women. J&K highway curbs partially relaxed: Under public pressure, the Jammu and Kashmir governor administration Saturday partially relaxed the two-day-a-week restrictions on the movement of civilian traffic on the Srinagar-Jammu National Highway which were put in place to facilitate movement of security forces' convoys. On April 7, the administration had imposed the restrictions on the national highway (NH-44) connecting Jammu to Srinagar, days after the Pulwama attack that killed P6 40 CRPF personnel. Poorva Express derails near Kanpur: Twelve coaches of the Howrah-New Delhi Poorva Express derailed near Kanpur in Uttar Pradesh early Saturday, injuring 15 people. The train was going to New Delhi when the incident occurred near Rooma station -- about 20 km from here -- in Kanpur Nagar district around 12.50 am. Four out of the 12 derailed coaches had overturned, North Central Railway PRO said. The NCR GM said an inquiry was ordered in this connection which would be conducted P4 by the Commissioner of Railway Safety. enying all allegations of sexual harassment against him, Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi on Saturday said the independence of the judiciary is "under threat" and it "cannot be made a scapegoat". A special bench of the Supreme Court today called an emergency hearing after a former employee at the top court, in an affidavit to several SC judges, alleged she was sexually harassed by the chief justice. CJI Gogoi, however alleged a conspiracy behind the allegations. "There has to be bigger force behind this, they want to deactivate office of Chief Justice,” he said, adding that "reputation" is the only thing which a judge has and if it will be attacked on baseless allegations of sexual harassment, no "sane person" will come forward to take up judgeship. Speaking at a specially convened hearing along with Justices Arun Mishra and Sanjiv Khanna, he said that after being a judge for around two decades, he had a bank balance of Rs 6.80 lakh. "I have a bank balance of Rs 6.80 lakh. There is Rs 21.80 lakh in my bank account out of which Rs 15 lakh has been given by my daughter for the repair of my house at Guwahati. I have around Rs 40 lakh in provident fund. These are my total assets," he said. "When I had become a judge, I had much more," he said, adding, "Nobody can catch me on money. People have to find something and they have found this. "If judges have to work under these conditions then, I have always said in my public meetings, that good people will not come forward to take up the job. My peon has got more money than me," he said. The Chief Justice said the allegations had cropped up as he is scheduled to hear important cases in the Supreme Court next week. "I will sit on this chair and discharge my judicial functions without any fear... Things have gone too far. Judiciary cannot be made a scapegoat," he said. The Chief Justice said the woman who made the allegations against him has a criminal background and two FIRs were lodged against her. "How can she become a Supreme Court staff when an FIR was pending against her," the CJI said, adding that two criminal cases were also pending against her husband. A third FIR was registered against her following which she was arrested, he said, adding that after getting bail, she threatened the complainant of the third case with dire consequences. He said the woman was in jail for four days because of her criminal record and she was warned by the police a couple of times to maintain good behaviour. The police has moved a trial court here seeking cancellation of the bail granted to the woman and the matter was listed for hearing before a lower court on Saturday itself, he said. A Delhi court later listed the matter for 24 April as the accused woman was not served with the copy of the police's plea. Attorney General K K Venugopal told the court that earlier also two such instances had come to light, one against a former apex court judge and another against a senior advocate, and in these cases the media was asked not to publish anything. "The CJI's today's statement should get the widest publicity as possible," he said. Venugopal said the law contemplated that name of either the complainant or the respondent should not be published in such cases but the news portals, which have carried out the allegations, have "brazenly published" it. On the special hearing, the CJI said, "The responsibility of holding this special sitting is mine being the CJI. I have taken this unusual and extraordinary step because things EC show-cause to Pragya c PRESS TRUST OF INDIA BHOPAL, 20 APRIL The Election Commission (EC) on Saturday issued a show-cause notice to Malegaon blast accused and BJP candidate from Bhopal Pragya Singh Thakur over her remark about Hemant Karkare, the Maharashtra ATS chief who was killed in the 26/11 terror attack, an official said here. Addressing BJP workers here Thursday night, Thakur had claimed that Karkare died during the attack as she had “cursed” him for torturing her when he probed the blast case as chief of the Anti-Terrorism Squad. However, after her remarks kicked up a row, she tendered an apology Friday. “We took suo motu cognisance of the statement and sought a report from the assistant returning officer (ARO) on the matter. We got the report this morning and we have issued notice, which is returnable within 24 hours, to the organiser of the programme and the person who made the statement,” District Election Officer and Bhopal Collector Sudam Khade told PTI. “We have also sent ARO report's copy to the EC,” he said. Asked about the point of serving the notice to her as she has already tendered apology, Khade said, “Let the reply come, then we will decide.” The organiser of the Thursday's event had been given permission on certain conditions as the model code of conduct was in force, he said. One of the conditions was that “objectionable language to defame anyone” will not be used, he said. Out on bail, Thakur (48) is facing trial under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in the blast case. The BJP on Wednesday fielded her from the Bhopal seat, where she is set to have a direct contest with Congress heavyweight and former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Digvijay Singh. Her statement against Karkare raised a political storm on Friday with opposition parties attacking the BJP and the Congress demanding an apology from Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The saffron party distanced itself from her comments, saying it was her “personal view” which she might have made “due to years of physical and mental torture”. Madhya Pradesh Finance Minister Tarun Bhanot Saturday lodged a police complaint seeking action against BJP's Bhopal Lok Sabha candidate Pragya Singh Thakur for her remarks against former Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad chief Hemant Karkare. Thakur, an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, had earlier claimed Karkare died in the 26/11 Mumbai attacks as she had “cursed” him for “torturing” her. Madhya Pradesh finance minister Bhanot said he had filed the case with the city's Gorakhpur police station as a private citizen and not in the capacity of a state minister. “I as a citizen filed a complaint with the city police demanding action against BJP candidate Sadhvi Pragya Singh for making derogatory remarks against Hemant Karkare,” Bhanot told PTI here. “I am hurt with her remarks against a martyr and filed the complaint as a citizen and not a minister. I am seeking action as per law against her,” he added. have gone too far. The judiciary cannot be made a scapegoat." The Bar Council of India Saturday condemned the “false and cooked-up” sexual harassment allegations against Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and said the entire bar was standing with the CJI, and against this “attempt to malign the institution”. “These are all false and cooked-up allegations and we condemn these kinds of acts. These kind of allegations and actions should not be encouraged. This is an attempt to malign the institution. Entire bar is standing in solidarity with the Chief Justice of India,” Manan Kumar Mishra, BCI chairperson, told PTI. He said an emergency meeting of the top bar body would be convened on Sunday and a resolution be passed in this regard. “We will pass the resolution and then try to meet the CJI to make him aware of the (BCI's) decision,” Mishra said. The Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) president and senior advocate Rakesh Khanna, who was present during the extraordinary hearing in the matter on Saturday, however, refused to comment. “We are not part of the case...There is no lis (litigation) before the court. I am not giving any interview Abhinandan to be nominated for Vir Chakra PRESS TRUST OF INDIA THIRUVANANTHAPURAM , 20 APRIL When the election model code of conduct is coming in the way of attempts to create larger than life images of some of the main protagonists of the electoral battle through films and online projections, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra today took a different route to sketch the character of her brother and party president Rahul Gandhi and subtly project him before the electorate at theWayanad in Kerala ~ his second constituency. Priyanka sought to answer questions the BJP has been asking about Rahul Gandhi’s academic qualification and religious belief. She started throwing “new lights” on hitherto “unknown” traits of Mr Gandhi with the preface that the Congress president is “averse to personal publicity” and “won’t surely approve of her manner of talking about him in such a manner.” She first gave details about how she and her brother had faced the tragedies in the family ~ the assassination of their grandmother, Indira Gandhi, and father Rajiv Gandhi. Then she said Rahul had studied in a British university and even worked for some time in the U.K. “Rahul has knowledge of the Vedas, Upanishads and religious texts of Islam and Christianity. I really doubt whether the so-called custodians of religions have such knowledge. He is a black belt and a mountaineer. He is a trained pilot, an ace diver and a rock climber. You know Rahul was flying to Karnakata sometime back when there was some trouble with the aircraft. I was terribly worried and contacted his secretary as I couldn’t get him over phone. And I was told though those accompanying him were scared, Rahul was at the cock- pit of the aircraft coolly handling the situation,” she told an election rally. “I entrust my brother in your hands. Please support him. He will never let you down. I am sure. Support him, he will be with you,” she said. Priyanka launched an attack on the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre, saying it had “betrayed” the faith of the people who had voted it to power. She alleged all that the NDA government had done in last five years was to divide the coun- try. “This is my country, these hills are my country, the wheat fields in Uttar Pradesh are my country. Tamil Nadu is my country, Gujarat is my country, north east is my country.But all that the BJP has done in the last five years, is just to divide the nation,” Priyanka said. “Five years ago, a government came to power that was voted with majority. The people of our country, with all their wisdom, rested their faith upon them. But from the moment it came to power, it began to betray the faith of the people,” she alleged. “They promised farmers that they will double their income. They promised youngsters that two crore jobs will be created.But once they came to power, they forgot who gave them the power,” she added. Alleging that they (BJP) began to believe that power belonged to them and not with the people, she said the first indication to that belief was when its president said the promise of Rs 15 lakh was for the sake of election. “He said it was a Jumla (gimmick),” Priyanka claimed. The BJP today raised a question mark over Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s educational qualification and his citizenship in the wake of a complaint filed in this regard with Returning Officer (RO) of Amethi ~ one of the Lok Sabha seats Gandhi is contesting from in the current general SEE ALSO PAGE 5 Hearing of plea to cancel bail on 24 Apr NEW DELHI, 20 APRIL A Delhi court on Saturday said it would hear on April 24, a police plea to cancel the bail of a former woman Supreme Court employee, who has accused Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi of sexual misconduct, in a cheating and criminal intimidation case. ChiefMetropolitanMagistrate Manish Khurana listed the matter forWednesday as the accused woman was not served with the copy of the police's plea. The police sought cancellation of the bail granted to the woman on March 12, after the complainant claimed that he was being threatenedbytheformerSupreme Court staffer and her associates. An FIR for the alleged offences of cheating, criminal intimidation and criminal conspiracy was lodged against the woman on March 3, after a complaint was filed by Naveen Kumar, a resident of Jhajjar in Haryana, at Tilak Marg PS. Kumar has alleged that the ex-SC employee had defrauded him of Rs 50,000, which he claimed she took as bribe, promising him a PTI job at the SC. SEE PAGE 3 EC bans streaming of Modi web series NEW DELHI, 20 APRIL Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, who became the face of the tense military confrontation between India and Pakistan, has been shifted out of Srinagar and posted to a frontline air base in the western sector, official sources said Saturday. It is also learnt that the IAF was going to recommend Varthaman's name for Vir Chakra, the coveted wartime gallantry medal, which is the third highest after the Paramvir Chakra and the Mahavir Chakra. Varthaman, who was captured by Pakistan on February 27 during an aerial combat with Indian Air Force, had returned to his squadron in Srinagar last month though he was on a four-week sick leave. Priyanka sheds new light on Rahul traits STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE (on the controversy). Thank you,” he said. However, former SCBA president and senior advocate Vikas Singh said the proper course would be to have an in-house inquiry by some senior Supreme Court judges to authoritatively find out the truth “this way or that way” in a time-bound manner. “If it is a false allegation then this definitely is a threat to independence of judiciary, but if it is true then it is also very serious,” he said. “There should be an in-house inquiry by some senior Supreme Court judges to find out authoritatively this way or that way in a time-bound manner,” Singh told PTI. The National Green Tribunal (NGT) Bar Association also condemned the allegations on the CJI and said it was an attempt to target top Indian judiciary and the entire bar stood in support of the CJI. “We condemn this attempt of targeting Indian judiciary. There is an urgent need to find a better way of dealing with these kind of accusations. Such baseless allegations are enough to ruin the reputation of a judge...this way anyone can make any accusations against anyone,” the NGT Bar Association's office-bearer Gaurav Kumar Bansal told PTI. elections. BJP spokesman GVL Narasimha Rao, addressing media persons at the party’s central office here, termed the "revelations" in this regard as "stunning". He asked the Congress president to come clean on the complaint against him. Even as the Amethi RO has scheduled the next hearing on this complaint for Monday, the BJP spokesman expressed his surprise over Congress president’s lawyer seeking time for responding to the complaint against his client. Lashing out at Gandhi, Rao alleged there had been attempts in the past, from 2004 to 2014 and in course of different elections, to hide facts in affidavits submitted by him. He claimed even a London-based firm in which Gandhi had made investments in 2004 had in its submission before the authorities had described him as a British citizen. STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI,20 APRIL The Election Commission today banned the online streaming of a web series on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, stating that no biopic material in the nature of biography or hagiography, which could disturb the level-playing field and violate its Model Code of Conduct (MCC) during the ongoing Lok Sabha elections, could be exhibited. The EC directed Eros Now, the producer of this web series titled "Modi -- Journey of a Co m m o n Ma n " , t o immediately stop its online streaming and remove all connected content till further orders. "A compliance report may also be sent immediately to that effect," the EC order sent to Eros Now through the chief electoral officer Maharashtra said. No t i n g t h a t f i v e epsodes of this web series was available on Eros Now's platform, the EC said on viewing the trailer of the web series it was apparent that it showcases different phases of PM Modi's life ~ from childhood to becoming a national leader. The web series was reportedly launched just ahead of the Lok Sabha polls and was playing on even though the EC had on 10 April banned The EC directed Eros Now, the producer of this web series titled "Modi -- Journey of a Common Man", to immediately stop its online streaming and remove all connected content till further orders the screening of a Modi biopic, titled "PM Narendra Modi", during the current poll period. In its order to Eros Now, the EC cited its 10 April order banning the screening of the PM Modi biopic, which had stated that “any biopic material in the nature of biography/hagiography subserving the purposes of any political entity or any individual entity connected to it, which is intended to, or which has the potential to disturb the level playing field during the elections, should not be displayed in electronic media including cinematograph during the operation of MCC”. The EC's today order also stated that in view of the admitted facts and material available on record, this being a web series on Modi, the PM and political leader and a prospective poll candidate, "cannot be exhibited" in view of the Commission's 10 April order.
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