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Snowfall in higher reaches, rain lashes J&K plains

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Srinagar, March 1 (IANS) Snowfall started in the higher reaches of J&K while rain lashed the plains on Friday.

The Meteorological (MeT) Department has forecast heavy to very heavy snow in the higher reaches of the union territory till March 4 as the maximum temperature dropped due to cloud cover.

Srinagar had 4.5, Gulmarg minus 3.2 and Pahalgam 1.3 as the minimum temperature.

Leh town in Ladakh region had minus 3.1, Kargil minus 9.4 and Drass minus 8.5 as the minimum temperature.

Jammu city had 14.3, Katra 11.2, Batote 8.4, Bhaderwah 6.8 and Banihal 6.6 as the minimum temperature.

–IANS

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AAP leaders booked for protest at BJP headquarters without permission

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New Delhi, May 20 (IANS) The Delhi Police on Monday booked Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders a day after they staged a protest which was led by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal towards the BJP headquarters here without permission, officials said.

Police said that Section 144 of the CrPC was implemented near the BJP headquarters on Sunday after Kejriwal’s call for a protest march as no permission was sought by AAP at the Deen Dayal Upadhyay Marg.

“A case under Section 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) has been registered at Indraprastha Estate police station,” said a senior police official.

On Sunday, the AAP workers led by Kejriwal marched toward the BJP headquarters and sat in front of the 10-foot barricades erected by the police to block them.

However, the protest ended after just 20 minutes, and all the leaders, including CM Kejriwal, returned to the party office.

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Before the protest march, Kejriwal had accused the BJP of orchestrating “Operation Jhadu” to suppress the AAP.

To prevent any incidents and maintain order during the protest, the Delhi Police had deployed a significant number of officials and paramilitary personnel.

–IANS

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TDP seeks withdrawal of cases against media, BJP leader in Vizag

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Amaravati, May 20 (IANS) The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) on Monday demanded the withdrawal of cases filed against some media personnel and BJP Assembly polls candidate Vishnukumar Raju in Visakhapatnam.

TDP state unit President Kinjerapu Atchen Naidu alleged that Visakhapatnam police, suo moto, registered FIRs against some media personnel and Vishnukumar Raju with the connivance of the leaders of the ruling YSR Congress and appealed to the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) to initiate measures to immediately withdraw these cases.

In a letter addressed to the CEO with a copy sent to Avinash Kumar, the Principal Secretary in charge of the State in the Election Commission of India in New Delhi, the state Director General of Police, the special general observer of the poll panel and the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC), he said that these attempts to file cases against the media personnel only amount to muzzling the freedom of the press.

Observing that the intervention of the poll panel to initiate stern measures certainly yielded fruitful results to check post-poll violence to some extent, Atchen Naidu wrote that the incident that took place at Kancharapalem in Visakhapatnam in which two women sustained grievous injuries for not voting for the YSRCP is highly condemnable.

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The media personnel were attacked by the YSRCP leaders as they performed their duty of filing the reports on the attack and the local police, in connivance with the YSRCP leaders, instead of initiating proper action, were only trying to divert the issue by filing cases against the media personnel, he alleged.

The TDP leader said when Vishnukumar Raju, the BJP candidate from the Visakhapatnam North Assembly segment, condemned the attack on these women at a media conference, police registered an FIR against him.

“To set a good precedent, we request you to arrange for the withdrawal of these cases against the media personnel and Mr Vishnukumar Raju and take action against the police officers, who in fact, allowed the post-poll violence and are now trying to muzzle press freedom,” Atchen Naidu said.

–IANS

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Hubballi murders: K'taka Home Minister meets families of Neha & Anjali

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Hubballi (Karnataka), May 21 (IANS) Karnataka Home Minister G. Parameshwara on Monday met the families of Neha Hiremath and Anjali Ambigera — two young women who were stabbed to death here recently — causing a furor in the state.

Both Anjali and Neha were brutally murdered by ‘jilted lovers’, raising questions about the law and order in Hubballi city, and in the state.

Parameshwara, meanwhile, said that the Anjali murder case would be handed over to the Criminal Investigation Department. However, he said that the Neha murder case would not be handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation.

Anjali was stabbed to death in front of her family by a jilted lover at her residence last week.

Though the family had complained about the threat from the jilted lover — said to be a habitual offender — the police had reportedly asked the family not to overthink and had sent them back.

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“This is a serious case. Anjali’s family is very poor. She did not have parents, and her grandmother raised her. Their family has to work every day to earn their bread. If a family member is hacked to death, we need to ascertain why the incident took place,” the Minister said.

“These two murders, which took place in Hubballi, are unfortunate. Incidents like these should not happen. I have visited both families,” he added.

The Karnataka Home Minister, further talking about the Neha murder case, said: “Neha Hiremath was killed by Fayaz. Unfortunately, the case has been given political colour. We need to find out why the accused Fayaz killed Neha. I want to make clear… whatever pressure might come, I will not let the investigation slow down. Our objective is to get maximum punishment for the accused.”

Reacting to the BJP’s claim about the collapse of law and order in Karnataka, Parameshwara said: “During the BJP’s tenure between January and April 2021, 499 murder cases were reported. In the same period in 2022, the number of murders reported was 466. In 2023, 431 cases were reported, and in 2024, 430 cases were reported. This data proves under whose period more murders were reported.”

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–IANS

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Telangana decides to take up repairs to Kaleshwaram barrages

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Hyderabad, May 20 (IANS) The Telangana government on Monday decided to take up repairs to three barrages of the Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Project, in line with the recommendations made by the National Dam Safety Authority (NDSA).

The state Cabinet meeting, chaired by Chief Minister A. Revanth Reddy resolved to take up repairs to the Medigadda, Annaram, and Sundilla barrages.

The Cabinet discussed the issue in detail, examined the interim report of the NDSA, and decided to go by the advice of technical experts. The repair works would be entrusted to Central agencies. It was also decided that the expenditure in this regard should be borne by the construction agency.

The government also decided to explore options for the construction of structures like rockfill dams as temporary measures to lift water from Medigadda and other barrages.

At least three piers of the Medigadda barrage sank in October last year, raising concern over the safety of the structure and prompting the NDSA to send its experts for an inspection.

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Following its recommendation, the barrage was emptied.

Ministers Ponguleti Srinivas Reddy and D. Sridhar Babu told media persons after the Cabinet meeting that though failures in the barrages surfaced in 2019 itself, the then BRS government did not take corrective steps.

They said the decision to take up repair works was taken to make sure the huge public money spent on the project does not go to waste and also to protect the interests of the farmers.

The Cabinet decided to release water from the barrages to avoid further damage and rope in Central agencies for repairs.

Irrigation Minister N. Uttam Kumar Reddy is in touch with the Centre as well as its agencies in this direction.

The opinion of Central agencies will be elicited to ensure the sustainability of the barrages. It was resolved to take recommendations of two Central agencies per barrage.

The decision to take up repairs comes in view of the coming monsoon season.

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The Cabinet felt that since repairs at Medigadda may not set things right entirely and since it can’t store water, the government is keen to take some temporary measures to supply water to farmers. Measures will also be taken to prevent further damage to the barrages during monsoon.

Last month, the judicial commission headed by retired Supreme Court judge, Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghose began its probe into the alleged irregularities in the construction of the Kaleshwaram project. After coming to power in December last year, the Congress government had ordered a judicial inquiry into the sinking of the piers of Medigadda barrage and leakages in Sundilla and Annaram barrages. The commission has also been asked to look into the financial aspect of the project and technical flaws, if any, like designs, planning and execution of the irrigation project.

–IANS

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8 more Bangladeshi nationals, including 3 women, held in Tripura

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Agartala, May 20 (IANS) Eight more Bangladeshi nationals including three women have been arrested in Tripura, an official said on Monday, adding the fresh arrests have taken the number of individuals from the neighbouring country detained so far in the last two weeks to 35.

The official said that three Bangladeshi women were detained at Agartala railway station by the Government Railway Police (GRP) while they were about to board a train.

The three women — two aged 36 — and another 26,

had entered India illegally. They told the GRP personnel that they were trying to go to Ahmedabad in search of jobs.

Meanwhile, five Bangladeshi nationals were arrested in Tripura’s Khowai district for entering Indian territory without any valid documents.

The Bangladeshi nationals were detained while they were going to Santirbazar in southern Tripura.

A total of 35 Bangladeshi nationals, including many women and children, were arrested in Tripura in the last two weeks and all of them crossed the border illegally through clandestine route with the help of Indian middle men.

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–IANS

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