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Sisodia CBI raid: Anticipating AAP protest outside Modi, Shah residences, Delhi Police increases deployment


Hours after several teams of the Central Bureau of Investigation searched 21 locations, including the residence of Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, in connection with its probe into alleged irregularities in the Delhi Excise Policy, all 14 districts DCPs in Delhi were asked to send one company of the police force, along with one additional DCP and 5 companies of the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF), to New Delhi district by 11 am. Officials said this is in anticipation of a protest by the Aam Aadmi Party in New Delhi district outside the houses of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah.

An officer said the decision to send companies was taken after the special branch of Delhi Police received inputs that AAP could stage a protest outside the houses of Modi and Shah, as well as senior union ministers and the LG’s house.

“After receiving the inputs, the Special Branch informed senior officers and decided to make the arrangements in advance. Five companies of the CAPF from the operations, and 14 companies from the districts have been asked to report to the DCP (New Delhi district) by 11 am,” a senior police officer said.

In North Delhi, all the security arrangements have been made by the local police outside the LG’s house, but they have also demanded one company of the CAPF for deployment. “Apart from LG’s house, we have also made security arrangements outside Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s house,” an officer said.

‘You cannot talk about Hindu mythology without talking about Krishna’: Devdutt Pattanaik





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Punjab MLAs to get only one pension from today


MLAs in Punjab will now get just one pension with Governor Banwarilal Purohit giving his assent to the Punjab State Legislature Members (Pension and Medical Facilities Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2022, limiting multiple pensions to legislators, more than a month after it was passed by the Punjab Vidhan Sabha, and the government notifying the Act on Saturday.

Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann took to Twitter to announce that the bill had received the governor’s assent. “I am very happy to inform Punjabis that Hon’ble Governor has approved the ‘one MLA, one pension’ bill…Government has issued notification. This will save a lot of tax for the public,” Mann tweeted.

Former legislators in Punjab used to get pensions for supplementary terms too. By limiting the pension to one term, the government is likely to save Rs 19.53 crore for the state exchequer.

From now on, every legislator would get only one pension of Rs 75,150 per month irrespective of the terms for which he/she gets elected. Earlier, some former legislators were getting pensions as high as Rs 3 lakh per month.

State Finance Minister Harpal Cheema said that the state exchequer would save at least Rs 100 crore and added that it was a move in the right direction to save tax-payers’ money.

Chief minister Mann had announced the plan to limit multiple pensions of legislators soon after he took charge but it took more than four months for the Act to be notified.

Earlier, the governor had refused to give his assent to an ordinance to this effect saying that it should be put up as a Bill in the budget session of the Vidhan Sabha. On June 30, the Vidhan Sabha passed the Bill.

Governor Banwarilal Purohit’s asset came at a time when the government was losing hope as the governor had not given his assent to the contractual employees’ Bill too. Since the Bill limiting pensions was a money bill, the government could not even send a reminder to the Governor. However, the government received the governor’s assent on Friday.

The delay caused a loss of a few crores to the state exchequer as the former MLAs were able to get multiple pensions for the months of May, June and July also.

After taking over reins of the state, chief minister Mann had said that legislators would get only one pension. For enforcing this rule, the government had amended Clause 3(1) of ‘The Punjab State Legislature Members (Pension and Medical Facilities Regulation) Act, 1977’.

Legislators in Punjab get a basic pension of Rs 15,000 per month. On this, they get 50 per cent DP (a merger of dearness allowance (DA) and basic pension effected on April 1, 2004), and a DA of 234 per cent. Similarly, for every supplementary term, they get Rs 10,000 basic pension, and DP and DA. The DA of 234 per cent, however, was not enhanced after December 31, 2016, following a decision by the Amarinder Singh-led Congress government.

However, when an ex-MLA will attain the age of 65, 75 and 80, he/she shall, respectively, be entitled to an increase of 5 per cent, 10 per cent and 15 per cent of the basic pension, admissible to him/her at the attainment of such age.

While the Bill was tabled, Leader of Opposition Partap Bajwa had said when an MLA is above chief secretary in protocol, an MLA’s pension must be at par with that drawn by the chief secretary. Chief minister Mann had said that a government official becomes eligible for pension after serving for at least 20 years. “A young man who becomes MLA at the age of 27 becomes eligible for pension just after five years. In such a scenario, it is unfair to equate both,” Mann had said.





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Hindu, Muslim residents of Jahangirpuri take out Tiranga Yatra days after violence


The Hindu and Muslim residents in the riot-hit neighbourhood of Jahangirpuri took out a Tiranga Yatra on Sunday to send out a message of communal harmony.

The Tiranga yatra in Delhi’s Jahangirpuri intends to send out a message of communal harmony. (Photo: India Today)

A Tiranga Yatra was taken out by the Hindu and Muslim residents of the riot-hit neighbourhood of Jahangirpuri in Delhi on Sunday.

People could be seen bestowing flower petals and every house in the area hoisted the national flag.

The Tiranga yatra, which began at 6 pm, intends to send out a message of peace. People in C, B, and D Blocks of the area were also seen sending a message of communal harmony.

(Photo: India Today)

Also Read | After day-long political showdown, Jahangirpuri locals declare restoration of peace

There was heavy police deployment for the Tiranga Yatra in the area. 50 people each from both the communities are participating in the yatra, police said.

(Photo: India Today)

The Deputy Commissioner of Police of North-west Delhi, Usha Rangnani, said, “Ample security arrangements have been made for the procession.Yatra is aimed to promote peace and to restore normalcy.”

Background

A communal clash broke out between two groups in Delhi’s Jahangirpuri during a Hanuman Jayanti procession on April 16. Nine people were injured. The Delhi Police launched a probe and have arrested 25 people and two juveniles in the case so far.

Meanwhile, the Delhi BJP claimed those accused in the Jahangirpuri violence were living in illegal constructions and demanded that they be demolished. The North Delhi Municipal Corporation launched an anti-encroachment drive on Wednesday.



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Political showdown in Jahangirpuri: Now Samajwadi Party to send its 5-member delegation


A day after Trinamool Congress announced that it would send a delegation to Delhi’s Jahangirpuri, where the violence broke out between two groups, now, the Samajwadi Party has announced that it will also send a team to Delhi.

A five-member delegation of the Samajwadi Party will visit the Jahangirpuri area on Friday, where the demolition drive was carried out by the civic body.

The Samajwadi Party’s 5-member delegation includes three MPs and 2 former MPs. Shafiqur Rahman Barq, ST Hasan, Vishambhar Prasad Nishad, Ravi Prakash Verma, Javed Ali Khan will visit the area and will interact with the locals to enquire about the incident.

ALSO READ: No need to give notice for anti-encroachment drive on govt land, says North Delhi civic body

The delegation will submit its report to the party after “investigating” into the demolition drive carried out in Jahangirpuri.

TMC delegation will also visit Jahangirpuri

Notably, a delegation of five-member TMC women leaders will also visit Jahangirpuri on Friday.

All women TMC leaders’ delegation includes Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar, Sajda Ahmed, Aporupa Poddar, Satabdi Roy and Arpita Ghosh. MP Kakoli Dastidar will lead the delegation.

ALSO READ: Jahangirpuri demolition drive: What does the law on encroachment say?

As per sources, the TMC delegation will try to meet the families and shop owners whose shops were bulldozed on Wednesday in Jahangirpuri and could also investigate issues about the violence that broke out on April 16.

Congress and AAP on the ground

Earlier on Thursday, Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party had sent its delegations to the Jahangirpuri demolition site.

Senior Congress leaders such as former union minister Ajay Maken and Shakti Sinh

Gohil, along with Delhi Congress chief Anil Choudhary, had visited Jahangirpuri. Maken dubbed the demolition drive in Jahangirpuri as “illegal”.

Gohil confirmed to India Today that he met the Hindu and Muslim families of the area and appealed to them to maintain peace and harmony. He lambasted the Bharatiya Janata Party and accused the saffron party of trying to distract the people from real issues such as inflation and unemployment.

Meanwhile, Anil Choudhary had trained his guns at AAP and asked why Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is yet to visit the communal violence- hit areas of Jahangirpuri.

A couple of hours after the Congress’ delegation, the AAP delegation under senior AAP leader and Burari MLA Sanjeev Jha visited the Jahangirpuri demolition site. Jha had accused the BJP of creating a communally tense environment in the area.

ALSO READ: North Delhi civic body targets illegal houses in violence-hit Jahangirpuri, asks for 400 cops

ALSO READ: Adesh Gupta writes to east, south Delhi mayors for anti-encroachment drives



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Arvind Kejriwal On Delhi Civic Poll Date Row


Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal stressed that postponing elections weakens democracy

New Delhi:

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal today urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ensure that civic polls in the national capital are not deferred and stressed that postponing elections weakens democracy.

The Delhi State Election Commission has said that the centre plans to bring a Bill in the Budget Session to unify three civic bodies and since the poll panel is examining the communication from Lt Governor Anil Baijal, it has decided to defer announcement of the election schedule.

The panel has said that it has sufficient time to conduct the polls before the expiry of term on May 18.

The three municipal corporations – South Delhi Municipal Corporation, North Delhi Municipal Corporation and East Delhi Municipal Corporation – are currently in BJP’s control.

“People are questioning the move. It has been seven-eight years since the BJP is at the Centre, why didn’t they do it (unification) earlier,” Mr Kejriwal asked. “The BJP knows that there is an AAP wave in Delhi and they would lose elections,” he said.

Questioning the rationale behind the move, he asked, “If tomorrow, three municipal corporations are clubbed, they will sit out of one office. The employees will do as needed, but why defer elections for this? Tomorrow if India is to go from a Parliamentary system to a Presidential system of governance, will elections be deferred? If two states are merged into one, will elections be deferred? These are unrelated incidents.”

“With folded hands, I urge Prime Minister Narendra Modi to let the elections happen. Governments come and go. The country is important and not political parties. If we pressure the Election Commission, it weakens institutions. We should not let the institutions weaken since it weakens democracy and the country,” he said.

The Chief Minister said the state election panel took the decision within an hour of receiving a letter seeking deferment of the polls. “If institutions are so easily weakened, it is a grave threat to our nation and to democracy,” he said.

“I even appeal to the state election commissioner, Sir, please do not come under pressure. I do not know what pressure you are under – if it is an ED raid, or a CBI raid, or an income tax raid, or something else – or is it because the state election commissioner, who is due to retire this year, has been promised a favourable post-retirement posting, but whatever be the case, Sir, please do not be under pressure or greed,” Mr Kejriwal said.

Meanwhile, the Election Commission clarified today that it does not oversee local polls. Its remark came in response to a CPI(ML) leader’s tweet on the row over Delhi civic polls.

Sucheta De, the CPI(ML) leader, had termed the deferring of polls an “alarming development” and said the poll panel “should not buckle under pressure”.

In response, the Election Commission clarified that it does not have the mandate to conduct local elections.





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Delhi Police to deploy dog squad across all ranges in capital


With training and working at VIP routes, Metro, markets, airports and railway stations for hours every day, the Canine Squad follow a disciplined routine under the Crime Branch of Delhi Police. The dogs will soon be deployed in all ranges in the capital to do more tracking, detection and investigative work, officials said Sunday.

The Delhi Police’s dog squad currently has 64 trained dogs — German shepherds, Labradors, Belgian Shepherds and Golden Retrievers. Out of the 64, 49 dogs are experts in explosive detection and 13 are tracker dogs. They will soon be sent to different police stations to help local police in conducting market checks and investigative work.

From recovering stolen goods, detecting explosive material, identifying narcotics to searching for missing children — the dogs are well-trained and follow a strict diet and routine. They are also part of Republic Day, Independence Day and other police parades, where they march with their handlers.

DCP (Crime) Manoj C said, “The dogs play a vital role in safety and security in the city. We have had incidents where dogs have been used to guard courts, malls, markets and airports. They have been trained at the Indian Army’s Remount and Veterinary Corps base in Meerut. Some of them have been trained by Border Security Force (BSF) in Madhya Pradesh. They are now ready to work with different police teams.”

After the training of explosive-detection dogs, the police hired 19 handlers for personal training in Meerut. The dogs’ training starts when they are six months old and goes on for three to six months.

“We need specialised dogs in the national capital. There are always VIP duties and anti-sabotage checks where we need more than human eyes to detect the danger of any sort, especially after the two IED incidents in Shahdara. At the end of the training, dogs and their handlers have to qualify for a practical and written test and need to get a certificate. If they fail, their training period is extended,” said an officer.

At present, the dogs are deployed at 10 police stations in Delhi — Model Town, Chanakyapuri, Kalyanpuri, Daryaganj, Sabzi Mandi, Maurya Enclave, RK Puram, Dwarka, Janakpuri and Saket.

At the Saket centre,  assistant sub-inspector (ASI) Gautam and his team take care of Golden Retrievers and others that were inducted in 2019. “We give them a very nutritious diet with eggs, milk, mutton, roti and dalia (porridge). We train them and also give them time to play with their fur friends and handlers,” said ASI Gautam.

In North Delhi, DCP Sagar Singh Kalsi said the dog squad stays inside the Sabzi Mandi police station and has been operational for a long time.

The centre is headed by ASI Jitendra Dogra who said he takes care of four Labradors and one German Shepherd – three are explosive detection dogs and the two are tracker dogs.

“We have many politicians, VIPs and officials living in North Delhi and have to conduct checks for their security. There’s also Tees Hazari court where the dogs are taken for regular checks for bombs and weapons. To prevent crimes near ISBT, Chandni Chowk and other heavy-footfall places, we deploy dogs to conduct checks,” said ASI Dogra.





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Delhi BJP Stages 'chakka jam' Against AAP Govt's New Excise Policy, Protest Leads To Traffic Woes



Delhi BJP Stages ‘chakka jam’ Against AAP Govt’s New Excise Policy, Protest Leads To Traffic Woes

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Delhi BJP Stages ‘chakka jam’ Against AAP Govt’s New Excise Policy, Protest Leads To Traffic Woes

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AAP to protest against MCDs decision to sell Novelty cinema land


Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders will on Wednesday stage a protest at BJP headquarters in DDU marg against North Delhi Municipal Corporation’s decision to “sell” the Novelty Cinema land at a “throwaway” price of just 34 crores.

“AAP will gherao the BJP headquarters to protest against the decision on Wednesday,” said party leader Durgesh Pathak.

The standing committee of North MCD has given final approval to the proposal to lease out 1,157-square metre land for 99 years at Rs 34.75 crore to a private player.

The building of the cinema hall, located in the Walled City area, was demolished just before the first Covid-19 induced lockdown was clamped in the country.

Reacting to the decision, AAP leaders said this is yet another example of MCDs not being able to manage their resources and therefore resorting to “selling” prime properties at throwaway prices.

Pathak said, B’JP-ruled MCD sold this massive, high-profile 1,100 sqm plot in this commercial area for just Rs 34 crore, while its market value should have been more than Rs 150 crore.”

“This also shows that how MCD has failed to manage itself that it is selling its prime lands instead of using it for revenue generating project,” he added.

Standing committee chairperson of North civic body Jogi Ram Jain said that the decision was taken because Delhi government has not given the due money to MCDs thereby crippling it financially.

Jain denied the allegations and said that according to the commercial rate, the cost of the land comes to about Rs 24 crore. Despite this, he said, the corporation had kept the basic price of the land at Rs 34.59 crore. He said that the process of e-tendering has been followed.



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