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SC upholds Rajasthan rule excluding candidates having more than two children from public employment

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New Delhi, February 29 (IANS) The Supreme Court has upheld the validity of a provision of Rajasthan service rules, excluding candidates having more than two children from public employment.

A bench headed by Justice Surya Kant was hearing a special leave petition filed by an ex-serviceman whose candidature was rejected for the post of constable in the Rajasthan Police on the ground that he had more than two children.

The bench, also comprising Justices Dipankar Datta and K.V. Viswanathan, noted that a somewhat similar provision in Haryana, which was introduced as an eligibility condition to contest panchayat elections, had been earlier upheld by the apex court in 2003.

In October 2022, the Rajasthan High Court had refused to entertain the appellant’s petition, saying that the Rajasthan Various Service (Amendment) Rules, 2001 falls within the realm of policy and does not warrant any interference.

Dismissing the appeal, the Supreme Court said that it does not find any ground to interfere with the view taken by the high court. In the case of Javed and others versus State of Haryana, it was laid down by the apex court that the classification, which disqualifies candidates for having more than two living children, was non-discriminatory and intra-vires the Constitution, since the objective behind the provision was to promote family planning.

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–IANS

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Tribal welfare board scam: SIT arrests man behind creating fake bank accounts, seizes Rs 10 crore cash

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Bengaluru, June 12 (IANS) In a major development, the Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the tribal welfare board scam and suicide of an employee of the board has arrested a person behind the creation of fake bank accounts and seized 16 kg gold and Rs 10 crore cash, sources said on Wednesday.

The arrested person has been identified as Satyanarayana Varma, a resident of Hyderabad in Telangana.

According to the police, the accused had opened 18 fake accounts in various banks and huge funds were transferred to these accounts from the Karnataka Maharishi Valmiki Scheduled Tribes Development Corporation (KMVSTDC).

The accused’s role had come out during the verification of bank accounts to which the reserved government funds were transferred. The SIT sleuths are likely to bring him to Bengaluru.

The scam in the corporation came to light following the suicide of Chandrashekaran (50), who was working as an Account Superintendent in the Tribal Welfare Board.

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He was allegedly pressurised to move large sums of money to various illegal accounts.

It was alleged that the funds were diverted to Hyderabad to be used by Congress for the Lok Sabha election in Telangana and other states.

Congress has denied all the allegations.

B. Nagendra who was Minister for Youth Empowerment, Sports and Tribal Welfare has tendered his resignation in connection with the case. The BJP has been demanding the resignation of the Medical Education Minister Sharan Prakash Patil.

The BJP has also been pointing fingers at Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, senior Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi.

–IANS

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PM Modi reviews Kuwait fire tragedy, announces Rs 2L ex-gratia for Indian victims

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New Delhi, June 12 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a review meeting on the fire tragedy in Kuwait in which a number of Indian nationals died and many were injured, here at his residence on Wednesday.

Prime Minister Modi also announced ex-gratia relief of Rs 2 lakh to the families of the deceased India nationals from the Prime Minister Relief Fund.

The Prime Minister expressed his deep sorrow at the unfortunate incident and extended condolences to the families of the deceased. He wished speedy recovery of those injured.

Prime Minister Modi directed that the government should extend all possible assistance. “MoS External Affairs should immediately travel to Kuwait to oversee the relief measures and facilitate expeditious repatriation of the mortal remains,” he said.

External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, Minister of State (MoS) for External Affairs Kirtivardhan Singh, Principal Secretary to PM Pramod Kumar Mishra, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra and other senior officials were also present in the meeting.

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–IANS

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Dalit youth assault: Junagadh protesters demand fast-track probe, addition of Section 120B

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Junagadh, June 12 (IANS) A protest rally was organised in Junagadh on Wednesday in support of the Dalit community demanding justice for NSUI leader Sanjay Solanki, who was allegedly assaulted by the son of a BJP MLA following a verbal altercation.

The rally, which began at the Babasaheb Ambedkar Chowk, saw participation from leaders and members of the Dalit community.

The protesters marched to express their solidarity with Solanki and put forth their demands before the state government.

“The Dalit community through the rally has put forth four primary demands to the government: the addition of Section 120B (criminal conspiracy) against all accused individuals, the appointment of a special public prosecutor to handle the case, a fast-track trial to ensure the case is resolved within six months and emphasis was placed on holding the accused accountable, specifically targeting Jayaraj Singh Jadeja and his family,” sources said.

The controversy began on May 30 when Sanjay Solanki, the president of the National Students Union of India (NSUI) city unit, filed a complaint alleging assault by BJP MLA Geetaba Jadeja’s son, Jyotiradityasinh alias Ganesh Jadeja alias Ganesh Gondal and his associates following a verbal altercation at Kalwa Chowk, Junagadh.

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Solanki claimed he was kidnapped, taken to a deserted farm in Gondal, and subjected to further assault and humiliation, including being forced to apologise on video under threat of a firearm.

Following the complaint, Ganesh and the others involved were arrested by Junagadh police on June 5.

In a show of solidarity, Dalits held a rally demanding strict action against Ganesh Jadeja, and others involved in a caste-based atrocity case.

The protest led to the closure of Gondal’s Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC), the largest wholesale market in Gujarat, on Wednesday.

Operations at the APMC in Gondal town, located in Rajkot district, came to a complete halt.

–IANS

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Sachin Pilot to address students at Oxford University on Friday

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Jaipur, June 12 (IANS) Oxford University in the UK has invited senior Congress leader Sachin Pilot to address its students on June 14.

The university has invited Pilot to share his views and have a detailed interaction with the students and the faculty on a wide range of issues.

The event is open to the public and can be accessed online as well, said a member of Pilot’\s team.

“I will be speaking at the Oxford University’s Blavatnik School of Government on Friday, 14th June at 2 PM (UK) / 6.30 PM (India). I look forward to an engaging interaction with the students and faculty members there. The event is open to the public and can be joined online,” Pilot said in a post on X.

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No fresh incident in Manipur's violence-hit Jiribam, BJP MLA raises concern on breach of CM's security

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Imphal, June 12 (IANS) No fresh incident was reported from Manipur’s violence-hit Jiribam district in the past 24 hours, officials said on Wednesday, while a key MLA of the ruling BJP raised concerns about the security breaches of Chief Minister N. Biren Singh’s advance security convoy on Monday and demanded an inquiry into this incident.

Police officials in Imphal said that combined security forces comprising Assam Rifles and state police commandos are continuing their strict vigil in Jiribam and adjoining areas, and no fresh incident was reported from the district, adjoining Assam, during the past 24 hours.

However, tension still prevails in the mixed-population district inhabited by Meiteis, Nagas, Kukis, Muslims and non-Manipuris, where a wave of violence broke out after the killing of 59-year-old farmer Soibam Saratkumar Singh on June 6.

A senior police official said that two police checkposts, a forest beat office, and at least 100 houses were set afire in Jiribam by attackers on June 7 and 8.

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The district administration has imposed a curfew in Jiribam and adjoining Tamenglong district for an indefinite period.

An official in Imphal said that Governor Anusuiya Uikey requested the Chief Minister to take all possible steps to bring the situation under control.

More than 940 people, mostly belonging to the Meitei community, have taken shelter in newly set up seven relief camps after the violence.

Jiribam had so far largely remained unaffected by the ethnic violence which has affected Manipur since May 3 last year, and the strife between Meiteis and Kuki-Zomi in several districts has so far claimed over 220 lives in both communities.

Over 1,500 people in both communities and over 70,000 people have been displaced from their homes and villages in the over-a-year-long ethnic violence.

The rioting has also left thousands of houses, government and non-government properties, and religious structures destroyed or damaged.

Meanwhile, in the wake of suspected militants attacking the advance security convoy of the Chief Minister in Kangpokpi district on Monday, leaving one security personnel injured, BJP MLA Rajkumar Imo Singh demanded action against the officials concerned. He also said that the state government should initiate an enquiry into the lackadaisical attitude of the officers who were given advance intelligence reports by the state government regarding the situation in Jiribam earlier this year.

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Singh, the son-in-law of Chief Minister Singh, in a post on X, said: “These officers should be held accountable for the loss of lives and property of all those affected and, pending such enquiry they should be suspended and strict action should be taken up against them as per procedures prescribed by law.”

“Along with their associate officers, they should also be held accountable for the ambush on the state police team heading as an advance cavalcade for the Chief Minister, which is also related to the Jiribam incident,” he said.

“As a Member of the Legislative Assembly of the state, I demand that the state government have the order issued immediately and fix responsibilities against all the officers and people involved, and further ensure that the people of Jiribam be given adequate security and allowed to continue living at the original place of residence sooner than later.”

–IANS

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