Maharashtra: BJP corporator gets 5-yr RI in bribery case.

A BJP corporator was on Wednesday sentenced to five years’ rigorous imprisonment by a court here in Maharashtra for taking bribe in 2014.

District Judge (special Anti-Corruption Bureau cases) P P Jadhav pronounced Varsha Bhanushali, the corporator in the BJP-ruled Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC) of Thane district, guilty under provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

The court also imposed a fine of Rs five lakh on her, additional public prosecutor Vivek Kadu said.

On June 6, 2014, Bhanushali, who then represented ward 14-B of the MBMC, demanded Rs 1.6 lakh from a shopkeeper to arrange permission to increase the height of his shop.

It was agreed that he would pay Rs 50,000 as the first installment.

The aggrieved shopkeeper approached the Anti- Corruption Bureau, which laid a trap and caught Bhanushali while accepting Rs 50,000, the prosecution told the court.

Court sends Ex. Sr. IAS Officer to Custody in a Land Grabbing Case on Complaint of Ex. District Judge

Retired IAS officer Umrao Salodia & 5 others were remanded in custody on Monday till Sept 5 for their involvement in a land grabbing case which was registered in 2013 & investigated by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB).

The case was filed by 7 stakeholders who accused Salodia, the then chairman of the revenue board, & other officials of taking decisions & conspiring to defraud them of around 70 bighas in Harmada worth hundreds of crore by favouring another party in a land dispute.

Nanagram Sharma, a complainant in the case & a retired district judge,told “Salodia took the decision to allow another party to grab our land without actually having any right over it. For the last 7 years, I & other stakeholders have been fighting the legal battle to reveal that all the accused had done injustice & indulged in corruption & forgery. There are enough records for these which has been investigated by Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB).”

In 2015, Salodia had taken voluntary retirement & claimed to have converted to Islam & changed his name to Umrao Khan.The bureaucrat had publicly declared to have converted to Islam in protest against the previous Vasundhara Raje govt, which denied him a chance to become the chief secretary on the seniority basis by granting a 3-month extension to the then incumbent C S Rajan in Dec 2015.

During his protest in 2015, Salodia said that he was the first Dalit to become an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer in the state & would have been the first Dalit to occupy the top bureaucratic post of the chief secretary. But the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) govt conspired & granted extension to Rajan only to deny him (Salodia) the chance. Alleging bias against him on caste grounds, the officer had quit govt service 6 months before he was due to retire on June 30, 2016. He had simultaneously changed his surname to Khan. However, when he contested the recent Lok Sabha election as a Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) candidate from Jaipur seat he used his original surname.

Woman maintenance plea dismissed for hiding salary

justiceA local court has dismissed a woman’s appeal for maintenance from her estranged husband on the ground that she had concealed details of her employment and salary from it.

Additional District Judge Gurnam Singh dismissed the woman’s application seeking maintenance saying the woman had concealed the fact that she was employed and her salary was more than that of the petitioner.

“She absolutely concealed this fact in the application as well as supporting affidavit,” he said in his four-page order.

In her application filed through her advocate, Jeewan Mala prayed to direct her husband Dharmendra Joshi to pay Rs 20,000 per month as ad interim maintenance to her for meeting her and their two sons’ expenses.

She stated the expenses of each of the children were Rs 1,50,000 per annum and she had no sufficient independent income to meet out the expenses.

Making an appeal for dismissal of Mala’s application, Joshi’s counsel stated that the petitioner had filed it without giving details about her employment and salary.

Joshi’s counsel said Mala was working as a Maths teacher for last 20 years and is getting more salary than her husband.

She also owns a house, portion of which was rented out. To the contrary, the petitioner was employed on contractual basis and was getting consolidated salary, he added.

At this, the court directed both the parties to produce their salary certificates.

The salary certificate of Joshi revealed that he was getting salary of Rs 21,732, whereas Mala was getting salary of Rs 35,842.

To this, Mala’s counsel submitted that with the aforesaid salary she was not able to meet out her necessities and the school expenses of both the children, which were quite high.

The lawyer also said that Mala was suffering from cancer and was undergoing treatment.

Joshi’s counsel counter-argued that his salary was quite less than Mala’s salary and the children were sent to a highly expensive school without his knowledge and consent, for which he could not be made liable.


Order on in camera trial, media restraint in rape case upheld

A petition which challenged the order for in camera hearing and a ban on media reporting of the December 16 gangrape case was dismissed on Wednesday by the district judge who said it was “mandatory” to hold in camera proceedings in a case of rape and related offences, and that the magistrate had been “duty bound” to pass such an order.

A revision petition had been filed on Tuesday before district judge R K Gauba challenging the order invoking Section 327 of the Code of Criminal Procedure by Metropolitan Magistrate Namrita Aggarwal.

The petitioners claimed that the day the accused were being produced, the Saket courtroom had a crowd because a large number of policemen were present there.

But according to the district judge Gauba, “the premise on which the grievance is raised stems from an erroneous understanding of the statutory rule”.

Gauba also mentioned, “The petitioners seek to question the order of the magistrate on facts. I am afraid this is not permissible as the judicial order is sacrosanct and cannot be questioned on factual aspects in the manner sought to be done.”

Aggarwal had passed the orders for in camera proceedings in the case after the prosecution said that the presence of the large number of lawyers, mediapersons and other people raised “apprehension about the safety of the undertrial prisoners”.

The district judge had asked police to reply to the petition filed by advocates D K Mishra and Poonam Kaushik who sought to set aside of the orders of the magistrate.

During arguments in court, Mishra said the media could not be barred from reporting the proceedings in the case as the “entire country wants to know what is happening in this case”.

In a reply filed on behalf of the Delhi Police, special public prosecutor Rajiv Mohan said the petition, which sought relief against a provision of procedural law, was not maintainable.

“The magistrate was within her rights, rather duty bound, to apply provisions contained in section 327(2) and (3) (in camera trial of rape cases) CrPC to the proceedings before her. .. I do not find any error, impropriety or illegality in the impugned order,” Gauba said.

Victim’s family for open court hearing

Ballia (UP): The family of the 23-year-old gangrape victim on Wednesday favoured an open court hearing in the case and said this would enable information to reach the people.

“They (general public) would otherwise not come to know of the developments and this might weaken the people’s anger, and the agitation going on against the rape and demands for a strict anti-rape law,” her family said.



Court issues production warrant against Abu Jundal

Let Terrorist and 26/11 Mumbai attack key handler Abu Jundal was ordered to be produced before it by a Delhi court on November 26 as he could not appear before it after expiry of his judicial custody period.

District Judge (DJ) I S Mehta issued a production warrant against Jundal for his appearance in the court after jail authorities told it that he was in the custody of Gujarat ATS.




Ghaziabad lawyers seek transfer of district judge

The Ghaziabad Bar Association Wednesday demanded the transfer of the district judge in connection with the provident fund (PF) scam.

The bar also demanded a high level inquiry into the circumstances in which a court clerk committed suicide in a court room Tuesday.

“In view of the Central Bureau of Investigation complaint before the Supreme Court and its subsequent comments (in connection with the PF scam) the bar association demands the transfer of the district judge,” bar association president Vijay Pal Rathi said

“In its five-hour-long meeting, it also passed a resolution demanding a high-level inquiry into the incident of suicide by a court clerk,” he said.

A court clerk committed suicide in a court room Tuesday. The police claimed clerk Rajpal Singh was under severe depression.

In a suicide note, he apprehended that he may be implicated in the provident fund (PF) scam. He had been associated with a judge who is named in the PF scam and was apprehending his implication, police said.

He consumed poison tablets when the court of Additional District and Sessions Judge R.N. Singh was hearing matters.

Lawyers, litigants and officials from prosecution side were present in the court and the judge was on the dais.

He took out the tablets from the pocket and consumed them when he was asked to produce a file.

“Instead of presenting the file before the sitting judge, he took out the tablets and consumed them,” said Superintendent of Police (City) A.K. Vijaita.