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Traffic restored fully on Srinagar-Jammu highway

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Srinagar, Feb 25 (IANS) Srinagar-Jammu national highway was open for two-way traffic on Sunday while Srinagar-Leh and the Mughal Road remained snowbound and closed.

Traffic department officials said that the strategic Srinagar-Jammu highway was now fully open while commuters were advised to follow traffic discipline to avoid traffic jams.

Officials said that the Srinagar-Leh highway, Mughal Road, Sinthan-Kishtwar, Bandipora-Gurez road and Kupwara-Tangdhar road are still snowbound and closed for traffic.

–IANS

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Swati Maliwal case: Judicial custody of CM Kejriwal's aide Bibhav Kumar extended

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New Delhi, June 22 (IANS) A Delhi court on Saturday extended Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s aide Bibhav Kumar’s judicial custody in the Swati Maliwal assault case till July 6.

Bibhav Kumar was arrested on May 18 in connection with the assault on Maliwal, an Aam Aadmi Party Rajya Sabha member and former Chairperson of the Delhi Commission for Women, on May 13.

The Delhi Police had moved an application seeking an extension of Kumar’s judicial custody. While his counsel opposed the plea, the prosecution said that Kumar might interfere with the current investigation.

He was produced through video conferencing before Metropolitan Magistrate Gaurav Goyal of Tis Hazari Court on the expiry of his previously extended judicial custody.

Earlier, his bail was dismissed by the judge.

On May 17, Swati Maliwal filed a complaint with the Delhi Police, revealing the extent of harassment and torture she faced at the Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s residence. She had visited the CM’s residence on May 13.

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–IANS

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Minister, top officials responsible for nursing college scam: MP LoP

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Bhopal, June 22 (IANS) Madhya Pradesh Leader of the Opposition (LoP) Umang Singhar on Saturday accused Minister Vishwas Sarang and top state officials of being responsible for the nursing college scam.

“Vishwas Sarang, his OCD Mahendra Gupta, ACS Mohammed Suleman and some other officials are responsible for the scam in the nursing colleges. Their role should be examined,” the LoP said.

On Thursday, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Mohan Yadav ordered the suspension of three officials, including Sunita Shiju, who was then in charge of the MP Nursing Colleges Registration Council.

The LoP alleged that Minister Vishwas Sarang, who was the Medical Education Minister in former Shivraj Singh Chauhan’s cabinet, along with the top officials are being shielded by the incumbent BJP government.

He said that earlier MP Nursing Colleges Registration Council used to function under the supervision of a representative body which was changed by the state government a few years ago.

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Over a dozen persons, including two CBI officials – who were part of the investigation, have been arrested in the past few weeks.

The multi-layer case is being heard before the Madhya Pradesh High Court.

–IANS

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Delhi court defers hearing on Engineer Rashid's interim bail plea

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New Delhi/Srinagar, June 22 (IANS) A Delhi court on Saturday deferred the hearing on former MLA and MP-elect Engineer Rashid’s interim bail application till July 1 after NIA sought more time to file objections.

Lodged in Tihar Jail, Engineer Rashid fought the Lok Sabha elections from the Baramulla constituency in J&K.

He defeated former Chief Minister and National Conference (NC) Vice President Omar Abdullah by more than two lakh votes.

Consequently, upon his victory, Engineer Rashid filed an interim bail application before the special sessions judge pleading that he had served more than half of the total punishment prescribed for the charge he was being detained for.

He has said in his jail application that he should be bailed out so that he can take oath as a Parliament member.

NIA counsel on Saturday sought more time from the Patiala House Court to file objections to the bail application following which the court deferred hearing till July 1.

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NIA has opposed the interim bail application arguing that Engineer Rashid is being charged along with Yasin Malik of the JKLF, Syed Salahuddin of the Hizbul Mujahideen and Hafiz Saeed, founder of Laskar-e-Taiba (LeT) terror outfit.

NIA counsel told the court that granting bail to Engineer Rashid would show the way to others charged with him.

–IANS

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Two booked for 'blackmailing' Prajwal's brother Suraj over 'false' sexual abuse charge (LD)

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Bengaluru, June 22 (IANS) The Karnataka Police have filed an FIR against two persons for “blackmailing” Janata Dal (Secular) MLC Suraj Revanna by threatening him with a “false” case of sexual assault.

Suraj Revanna is the grandson of former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda and younger brother of Prajwal Revanna, the prime accused in the sex video scandal.

Suraj Revanna’s aide Shivakumar H. L. has filed a case against a JD(S) activist, who alleged that Suraj Revanna abused him sexually, and his kin at the Holenarasipura police station.

The complainant said the accused had gone to the Suraj Revanna’s farmhouse on June 16 to request a job. As the accused did not get a job, he asked Suraj Revanna to give Rs 5 crore to him failing which he would file a sexual abuse case against the leader.

The complainant claimed that the accused later reduced the “extortion” amount to Rs 2.5 crore.

The police have registered a case under IPC Sections 384 (extortion) and 506 (criminal intimidation) and 34 (criminal act by several persons).

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However, the accused, talking to mediapersons, said: “Suraj Revanna was impressed with me as I had organised a programme in my village. We shared the mobile numbers and after that, Suraj messaged me for a meeting. I was asked to meet him at his farmhouse, where I was sexually abused.”

–IANS

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Kerala’s Varkala Cliffs will be protected: MoS Suresh Gopi

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Thiruvananthapuram, June 22 (IANS) Minister of State (MoS) for Tourism Suresh Gopi on Saturday said that the Varkala Cliffs in Kerala will be protected and experts will be engaged for its preservation.

“Varkala Cliff will be protected. Everything will be done scientifically. The government will also engage experts for the protection of these cliffs,” the minister said after a visit to the site.

Varkala Cliffs were declared a national geological monument by the Geological Survey of India (GSI) in 2014

Located about 45 kms from the state capital city, the Varkala Cliffs overlooks the Arabian Sea.

There has been a massive erosion taking place over the years which has taken away the laterite soil from the cliff base due to which there has also been a low turnout of tourists in the area.

These Cenozoic sedimentary formation cliffs are a unique geological feature on the otherwise flat Kerala coast and are known among geologists as the ‘Varkala Formation’.

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Over the years there have been studies conducted on how to maintain this unique creation, but not much headway has been made by the successive government.

–IANS

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