The Indian Express | 4 days ago | 24-06-2022 | 03:45 am
Former Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh, who fell foul of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra and was eventually suspended and had cases registered against him, has challenged his suspension two weeks ahead of his retirement.From the Maharashtra cadre, current Mumbai Police Commissioner Sanjay Pandey and Singh will retire on June 30. Sources said Singh wanted to ensure that he did not retire with the tag of a suspended officer. The move could also make him eligible to claim pension.A source said, “Two weeks ago, Param Bir Singh challenged his suspension before the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).While generally IPS officers approach the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) for grievances related to service, when an officer is suspended for over three months, the MHA is the relevant authority to raise the grievance.”The source said a decision on whether the suspension is to be revoked will be taken within the next few days. If the MHA finds merit in his argument, his suspension could be revoked and he could retire as an on-dutyofficer.Sources said the former city police chief, who fell out with the government post the Antilia terror scare case in which ten policemen, including dismissed officer Sachin Waze, were arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), did not want his retirment to be processedwhile he was under suspension and hence, he approached the MHA. A government official confirmed that the Maharashtra government had also received an intimation of the same nearly two weeks ago.An official said if the suspension is revoked, Singh may also be eligible for a pension payout provided his departmental inquiries have been cleared.Soon after the Antilia bomb scare case, the MVA government had shunted out Singh as commissioner in March 2021.Later he wrote a letter making allegations of corruption against then state home minister and NCP leader Anil Deshmukh which led to the latter’s resignation and eventual arrest.Later, a total of five FIRs were registered against Singh in connection with extortion charges. While a chargesheet was filed by the Mumbai Police in one of the cases, all the cases, including two enquiries being conducted against him by the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB), were eventually handed over to the CBI by the Supreme Court. The CBI is currently investigating the case.Apart from this, the NIA had also recorded the statement of Singh in connection with the Antilia case as well.
Mumbai: The state government informed the Bombay high court on Monday that it will not arrest actor Ketaki Chitale in 21 of 22 FIRs filed against her over her sharing of a post allegedly derogatory to NCP chief Sharad Pawar. Her quashing plea will be heard on July 12 along with a similar petition by Nashik student Nikhil Bhamare in connection with an FIR against him for his tweet against the veteran politician.More than a month after her May 14 arrest, Chitale was granted bail on June 22 by a Thane sessions court in an FIR filed at Kalwa police station for her post. She was released the following day. The actor is facing 22 FIRs and 4 non-cognizable offences in Maharashtra over her post. The FIRs invoked section 153A of IPC for the offence of promoting enmity on the grounds of religion, race, place of birth and residence.In the HC, her advocate Ghanshyam Upadhyay argued that in the remaining 21 FIRs, which are not maintainable, her arrest ought to be stayed.The HC asked public prosecutor Aruna Pai if she would make a statement on not arresting Chitale. After seeking instructions from the DGP, Pai made the statement, following which the HC posted the quashing plea for further hearing in July. Chitale had also sought HC orders to declare her arrest “illegal” and in “breach of law”.
Mumbai: Even as the ED has summoned Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Tuesday in two money laundering cases, he said, “I just came to know that ED has summoned me,” He tweeted further, “Good! There are big political developments in Maharashtra. We, Balasaheb’s Shivsainiks, are fighting a big battle. This is a conspiracy to stop me. Even if you behead me, I won’t take the Guwahati route. Arrest me! Jai Hind!”Last week the agency registered a case where Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Ltd (DHFL)’s erstwhile promoters Kapil Wadhawan and his brother Dheeraj are accused of a Rs 34,615-crore loan fraud along with builder Sudhakar Shetty of Sahana group. The ED is in the process of taking custody of Pune businessman Avinash Bhosale for questioning in the same case. Agency sources said ED registered the DHFL money laundering case based on a CBI FIR and while examining documents collected during the investigation, found suspicious entries linked to Sanjay Raut.The second case in which Raut’s been called for questioning is related to a Rs 1,200-crore chawl redevelopment fraud involving the Housing Development and Infrastructure Ltd (HDIL) group, its promoters Rakesh Wadhawan and son Sarang and Sanjay Raut’s associate Pravin Raut. HDIL subsidiary Guru Ashish Construction had taken over redevelopment of Goregaon’s Patra Chawl after entering into an agreement with the land owner Mhada (a state government agency) and residents of the structure. Pravin Raut was a shareholder in Guru Ashish who received Rs 50 crore after he exited the company. Pravin Raut also received Rs 45 crore from a land deal at Palghar from the HDIL group. Earlier, ED arrested had Pravin Raut and chargesheeted him after alleging that “Pravin Raut received Rs 112 crore between 2008 and 2010 from HDIL in multiple instalments. He failed to give valid reasons.”The ED suspects that Pravin Raut is a front for some influential persons including politicians. In April, the ED had attached a flat in Mumbai owned by Sanjay Raut’s wife Varsha and eight other land parcels jointly owned by her and another businessman’s wife in Alibaug, collectively valued at Rs 11 crore. ED had alleged that these properties were purchased through money diverted by Pravin Raut.Sanjay Raut did not comment on the ED’s allegations about his involvement.
A number of city colleges, especially those having autonomous status, have spelt relief for students awaiting their Class 12 CBSE and ISC results as they are not following Mumbai University’s admissions schedule.Earlier, the university’s circular declaring admission schedule had caused concern as it had asked city colleges to begin admissions even as CBSE and ISC students awaited their results.At Mithibai and N M College in Vile Parle, admissions to professional or self-financed degree courses are based solely on students’ performance in entrance tests. While their ongoing tests will continue until June-end, results are expected by July 10 and the admissions shall commence only after that.“It is unfair to start admissions while all those who are eligible are not ready to apply,” said Dr Krutika Desai, principal of Mithibai College. Dr Desai said that with a few seats available in traditional courses, it would be better to wait for them to be filled by giving a fair chance to all board students. Dr Desai has also written to the varsity administration in the regard.Meanwhile, Mumbai University has completed its degree admission registration process. A total of 2,41,921 aspirants have confirmed their pre-enrolment registration with Mumbai University and a total of 6,45,228 applications have been received for different courses.At Jai Hind College, admissions will wait until all board results are out. “Along with entrance tests for admission to professional courses, we have 50 per cent weightage given to the marks obtained by students in board exams,” said Dr. Ashok Wadia, principal of the college.In case of St. Xavier’s College, seats will be kept reserved for students coming from ISC and CBSE boards. “Based on admission statistics from the past few years, a certain set of seats will be kept aside for students coming from non-state boards. This also includes other students from boards where the results are yet not declared,” said Dr Rajendra Shinde, principal of St Xavier’s College where the entrance test will be held on July 2. KC College and HR College too are likely to follow a similar process of keeping the seats reserved.
The Supreme Court’s order on Monday, extending the time for Eknath Shinde and 15 other rebel MLAs in the Maharashtra State Legislative Assembly to file written response to the Deputy Speaker’s disqualification notice till July 12, was deemed as a victory by the rebel camp. On the other hand, the Shiv Sena also put up a brave front stating that the interim order had only postponed the inevitable disqualification of the rebel MLAs.“We have won this major battle as the court has given us a major relief and we have time to contemplate on how to take the next step, whether we have to come to Mumbai for floor test or not. We have given all the authority of decision to Shinde saheb who will decide on the further course of action,” rebel MLA Bharat Gogawale, the chief whip of the Shinde camp, said.When asked if there is any plan on joining hands with the BJP, Gogawale, said, “We have 51 MLAs and we have to go with someone to form an alliance. We cannot go with the Congress or the NCP and there is only one option, which is the BJP.”Deepak Kesarkar, the spokesperson of the Shinde camp, said that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena will form the government in the state, adding that their leader will be Uddhav Thackeray and that the Congress and the NCP should walk out of the government “instead of asking Thackeray saheb to resign”.Arvind Sawant, Shiv Sena Member of Parliament from South Mumbai, who has been spearheading the battle for disqualification for the MVA, however, called the interim order as “postponement of the inevitable disqualification”.“They have only got time…that doesn’t mean it is a setback to MVA (Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi). The process has just been postponed. Now we are in a wait-and-watch position and we will decide on our further course of action depending upon what they (the rebel camp) are doing,” Sawant said.
Amid large-scale defections that the Shiv Sena has suffered with senior party leaders and MLAs raising a banner of revolt, the party is now mobilising Yuva Sena, its youth wing, in an attempt to reassert itself and capture lost ground across the state.In a meeting that took place last weekend soon after the rebellion, the core committee members of Yuva Sena, who are all mostly based out of Mumbai, were instructed to expand their focus on different districts across Maharashtra.The Yuva Sena leaders have been asked to tap into the student community as well as local Sena workers in the state in an attempt to consolidate the party’s support base. A number of leaders who have been tasked with the assignment are relatively young faces in politics and are deemed to be close to Yuva Sena chief Aaditya Thackeray.Some of the Yuva Sena leaders who have been tasked with this outreach programme are Amol Kirtikar, Amay Ghole, Suprada Phaterpekar, Durga Bhosale Shinde, Sheetal Devrukhkar, Ankit Prabhu, Rupesh Kadam, Rahul Kanal, Sainath Durge, Pravin Patkar and Pradeep Sawant.The members have been asked to first begin their outreach in state universities. With most universities having graduate constituency elections around the corner, experienced members from Yuva Sena have been asked to individually take over responsibility of one university each.“Only few leaders have rebelled but the party’s cadre remains strong at the ground levels. But this is the right time to reach till the rural levels of Maharashtra and identify new faces which may not be from political background,” shared a core committee member adding how Yuva Sena’s focus on Mumbai Metropolitan Region has been a point of criticism to have come up over the past few days.According to the core committee members, it is not just the party’s leadership which is seeing a change of generation. Even the new set of voters is identifying with Aaditya Thackeray’s vision for the Sena, they added.“Right now is the time to tap on this new image of Sena by connecting with the younger generation. And taking Yuva Sena’s reach to rural Maharashtra, through universities and student leaders, will ensure this,” added another core committee member.Yuva Sena was founded on October 17, 2010 with an announcement by Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray in front of a large crowd at the party’s annual Dussehra rally at Shivaji Park maidan. The Yuva Sena was seen as a vessel to launch the political career of Aaditya Thackeray who has been heading the outfit since then.Apart from Aaditya, Varun Sardesai, who is a cousin of Aaditya, is another well known face of the Yuva Sena.Since its foundation, the sons of a number of Sena leaders, MLAs, MPs and others have joined the Yuva Sena and held prominent posts in the youth wing. Some of them are also sons of rebel MLAs and are now looking at weaning themselves away from the Yuva Sena.