Sunday, February 28, 2016

The following is an open letter written by the SC/ST Teachers' Forum & Concerned Faculty, University of Hyderabad, to Union HRD minister Smriti Irani:

Dear Ms Irani,
Thanks to your stunning performance, we, many faculty members from the University of Hyderabad, are compelled to do what we should have done in the last one month or so, but could not bring ourselves to - write, write about Rohith, write about our other students, write about the state of academics, write about ourselves and write about society at large.

Our first acknowledgement to this therefore goes to you for revealing yourself and for bringing us back from grief, from reflection, from teaching and from various other mundane things we do as part of our job.

As we watched you in disbelief on our TV screens on 24th February 2016, you, in a voice choked with emotion, again and again referred to the "child" whose death has been used as a political weapon. We were left bewildered.

At what precise point, Madam Minister, did this sinister, anti-national, casteist, Dalit student of the University of Hyderabad transform into a child for you? Definitely not in those five rejoinders from MHRD (the ministry of human resource development) between 03-09-2015 and 19-11- 2015 with the subject line "anti-national activities in Hyderabad Central University Campus"? Definitely not when you chose to overlook and endorse what can only be read as extraordinarily aggressive and unfounded allegations by a minister in your own government, Mr Bandaru Dattatreya?
Ms Irani, your constant reference to him as a child is nothing but a patronising attempt to dehumanise his reality. It is also deeply disrespectful to Rohit's mother whose child he actually is - because she knows how ironic your appropriation of him is, considering your culpability in his death.

Only after more than a month of his death Rohith becomes a "child" for you "whose death was used as a political weapon". A political weapon by whom, honourable Minister? By the other four students who were expelled with him and who spent those cold nights out in the makeshift velivada (which loosely translates as Dalit ghetto), with nothing but each other for company and succour? By the other students and friends who stood by him? Because you definitely seem to imply that when you say this child could possibly have been revived and yet his body was hidden and no doctor or police was allowed near him.

By now incontrovertible facts have emerged that belie this.
However, we would like to go beyond those facts and appeal to your heart. You were not there that night, Respected Minister. You did not see the grief or the shock, nor were you there to feel the despair. How could you even begin to fathom how desperate the students were when they called faculty members and the medical doctor of the university's health centre as soon as Rohith's body was found hanging by students and security officials? As Dr Rajyasree, medical officer, has stated, she rushed to the hostel at 7.30pm and declared Rohith dead at 7.40pm, all recorded in his case sheet on that fateful night of 17-01-2016.

The police arrived at the scene immediately after this. Iraniji, it is beyond our simple comprehension to understand how you with your meticulous preparation, evident in the Lok Sabha speech, ignored these crucial medical documents/preliminary evidences. This also includes the post-mortem report that declares Rohith was dead at least 18-24 hours before the body was examined the subsequent day. From all the medical and post-mortem reports, statements by friends, faculty and university officials - it is clear that Rohith's body was found hours after he hanged himself.

Not only are your claims factually incorrect but they point to an utter lack of respect and sensitivity for the grieving family, friends and students. You are clearly disconnected from the heartbreaking grief of his friends, palpable to anyone present that night or the accompanying anger knowing the injustice that led to this tragedy. Does it befit our honourable minister to implicate these very grieving people in the death of their beloved friend?

Respected Minister, you have also repeatedly claimed that the committee which suspended Rohith Vemula and four other Dalit students was not constituted by your government, but by the UPA regime. You have also emphasised that there indeed was a Dalit faculty member in that committee.

We are astounded that you can so smoothly pass on the responsibility for this tragedy to someone else. Being at the helm of the MHRD, we are sure you must know that the Executive Council's Sub-Committee that took the fatal decision to suspend the Dalit students from hostels and other common spaces was expressly constituted by the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Appa Rao, following five rejoinders from your ministry goading the university to take action against the Dalit students.

We may also point out that the two-member committee constituted by the MHRD itself points out a curious anomaly - the EC and its sub-committee is the very same body that recommends and ratifies - this simply cannot be.
Just in case your busy schedule has not allowed your attention to the following, permit us to point out further contradictions:
That this subcommittee was composed of all upper caste members except for one. We fail to understand how this one member is expected to overrule the will of five.
Most importantly, Prof. Prakash Babu, the sole Dalit member, was co-opted as the Dean, Students' Welfare and NOT as an SC/ST representative. Kindly refer to the constitution of the EC sub-committee in its minutes of meeting dated 24-11-2015.

That the EC sub-committee did not hear out the key stakeholders or consider the counter-affidavit filed by the Commissioner of Police on 3rd October 2015 and simply concurred with the much contested Proctorial Board's decision is matter for another enquiry.

Now let us come to the punishment itself. Let us think of the lives and struggles of the five boys who were suspended - four of them being sons of agricultural labourers and one without both parents. For them, suspension from hostel meant denial of food and shelter. Add to that, denial of right to access common spaces effectively amounted to social boycott in caste terms. Students who had surmounted unimaginable obstacles to reach the university were pushed back right into the velivada, the "untouchable" fringes of the village.
Do you not believe that the administration should have reached out at least when Rohith wrote that 18th December 2015 letter asking the VC to provide Dalit students "(a toxic inorganic compound) and a nice rope" at the time of admission itself?

Ms Irani, for all practical purposes, it was a cry for help. This was an opportunity for us to help this "child" and we lost that opportunity. And we have never heard you quote from this letter that was acknowledged as received by the VC's office.
For a despondent, beleaguered Rohith, hounded and ignored by the powers that be, death was probably the only way to freedom and the limitless wonder and beauty of the universe that so moved him! Perhaps it was the only way out for someone as conscientious, brilliant and reflective as Rohith was. This was Rohith's assertion of dignity, a dignity that was not allowed to him or his friends in their lives.

Their lives, in the words of Gopal Guru, mirrored social death, smeared with indignities of caste. To say that his "suicide note" of 17-01-2016 does not name or implicate anyone amounts to gross opportunism and abandonment of moral responsibility.

Permit us to remind you, dear minister, that the VC did not think/feel it worthwhile enough to meet the grieving students on that fateful night. We are reminded ad nauseam of the threat that students posed to him and continue to pose to him. Students who already had lost a dear friend were accused by the ABVP of violence, and, this is important - students who throughout their struggle since those intense first days following Rohith's death until now have maintained their poise, their maturity, through all their struggles and protests and have never resorted to violence.

Could the Vice-Chancellor of the University not meet and console them in that most vulnerable, heartbreaking moment? Even when nearly 300 teachers requested the VC to come and assured him of a space to meet students along with them, the VC's sense of authority prevailed over his sense of duty and responsibility. This was a defining moment Ms Irani, when the VC could have regained his moral stature and humanity in the eyes of the students. He clearly let history slip through his fingers.

Rohith is not there with us any more. His four friends suspended along with him are, his larger group of friends in this university and growing group of friends across the country are.
What we expect from you is very minimal. Do not turn this into a fight against students who have nothing to rely upon, no power - political or social - no connections, no money, not even a home.

Please understand this - the minority status you love to claim for yourself cannot in any way be equated with the state of disprivilege and dispossession that many of these students battle on a daily basis. All our students have is the hope of a future which education can possibly bring - to quote Rohith - "from shadows to the stars".

Do not blight their hopes, their dreams. Help us ensure each one of us is sensitive to cater to their needs inside classrooms, in labs, in hostels, outside, everywhere. As teachers, as ministers, we have much more to offer - truth, equality, justice, hope and inspiration. Not melodrama.

The Prime Minister has extolled your speech tweeting " Satyamev Jayate". Whose Truth? We ask.
SC/ST Teachers' Forum & Concerned Faculty, University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad

Saturday, February 27, 2016


In a historic judgment delivered yesterday, the West Bengal Consumer Commission has awarded Rs. 25.5 lakh (including litigation cost of Rs. 50 thousand) to the widow of a government worker who died due to a botched brain surgery and follow up treatment by Dr. Alok Kumar Khan, senior neurosurgeon and ex-head of Neurosurgery at R.G. Kar Medical College & Hospital, a government medical college in Kolkata. This case was fought by PBT after the victim’s widow with two young children came to PBT seeking help as the family was devastated following the unexpected death of her husband. In fact, PBT president, Dr. Kunal Saha, personally appeared and argued the case before the State Commission last December coming all the way from his permanent residence in USA.
Another unique aspect of this case is that the guilty physician, Dr. Khan, chose not to appear before the consumer court as he refused to accept repeated notices from the court as the case had to be decided ex perte by the State Commission. The doctor and nursing home (owned by the doctor) where the botched surgery took place in 2009 also refused to provide the medical records to the victim’s family in candid violation of law. Ironically, the West Bengal Medical Council as well as the State Health Department also remained as silent spectator despite repeated appeals for justice from the victim’s family. The court has ordered that Dr. Khan must give the compensation of Rs. 25.5 lakh to the victim’s family within 60 days failing which an interest at the rate of 9% will be added to the award (see the full judgment below). PBT has been helping victims across India to find justice and to bring an end to the rampant incidence of medical negligence and healthcare corruption.
The above has come from the mail which PBT sends to me.

Minister Irani stares at privilege motio

Our Special Correspondent New Delhi, Feb. 26: 

Opposition MPs plan to move a privilege motion against Smriti Irani accusing her of misleading Parliament on the events surrounding Rohith Vemula's suicide at a Hyderabad Central University hostel.
Led by the Congress and the Left, they want to focus on Irani's claim in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday that no doctor was allowed near Rohith to revive him and his body "was used as a political tool".

Rajasree Malpath, chief medical officer at the varsity health centre, has said she had reached the hostel within minutes of receiving an alert and found Rohith dead.
Rohith's friends today corroborated her and said they had contacted her immediately after the body's discovery.

"The minister has clearly lied to Parliament and tried to mislead the House. It is a breach of privilege of Parliament. The details are being worked out and the privilege notice would be moved on Monday morning," a senior Congress member said.
Efforts are on to secure the signatures of a large number of Opposition leaders on the privilege notice to make it difficult for the Lok Sabha Speaker and the Chairperson of the Rajya Sabha to dismiss it.

Irani had refrained from making the "no doctor was allowed" claim in the Rajya Sabha yesterday, the day Malpath's clarification became public. But the Opposition wants to move the privilege motion in both Houses.

"We'll use newspaper clippings in which (Malpath) has denied the charge levelled by the minister," a Janata Dal United member said.

A privilege motion can be moved by any lawmaker against anyone accused of breaching House members' privileges, that is, their special rights and immunities.
The two Houses have separate privilege committees, made up of their members. The Speaker and the Chairperson can dismiss privilege notices, or refer them to the privilege committee, or get a sense of the House before taking a decision.
If the notice is admitted, the committee can summon Irani, question her and recommend action. Historically, privilege motions have mostly been kept pending. Often, they have been withdrawn following an apology from the accused.

By indulging in histrionics and spouting a series of lies, the Union HRD minister has disgraced Parliament and all it symbolizes

A lesson in tall stories

Oscar Wilde need not have worried. Far from decaying, the art of lying is in full flower, at least in the Indian Parliament. Politicians here have not been known for their truthfulness, but Smriti Irani, the Union human resource development minister, managed to set an enviable standard for the outpouring of blatant lies when she conducted a lesson for parliamentarians on nationalism. She may shudder to learn how close to Oscar Wilde's heart she would be, since one of his principles in "The Decay of Lying" is that art does not follow life; life follows art. Ms Irani, soap actor extraordinaire, found a replica of her television studio in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. She blazed forth in uncontrolled rhetoric, calling down sentimental empathy for the 'child' in the university being shaped as a weapon by oppositional forces, promising to lay down her sliced-off head at the feet of an unperturbed Mayavati should she be proved wrong, trying to destroy the last shreds of rational debate in the Houses by carrying on about Mahishasura and in general having the time of her life. It was all art; very few of her claims, explanations and premises for argument had anything to do with life, or reality.

But it was very bad art, nothing to do with Wilde's beautiful untruths. Most of Ms Irani's lies relied on pure distortion of facts by suppression of essential details, such as her claim about the internal procedure that found the students of Jawaharlal Nehru University guilty, or her pretence at fairness in the declaration that all letters, whether from a leader of the Congress or the Bharatiya Janata Party, were sent on to the Hyderabad University. In the last she suppressed the fact that the Congress leader's letter was exactly the opposite of the BJP leader's, which was a factor in precipitating Rohith Vemula's suicide. But Ms Irani also excelled in unalloyed misstatements: that the Hyderabad University had decided to "expel" Vemula and other students - they had been suspended from their hostels, or that no doctor was allowed to see Vemula or try to revive him - a doctor was there immediately upon being called.
In all, these speeches and comments were a disgraceful exhibition. The HRD is one of the most important and prestigious ministries. To have its minister use Parliament as a theatre to exhibit her histrionic skills and spout a series of dangerous lies is to bring the House and all it symbolizes into shame. There is also in Ms Irani's declarations a deep stupidity that perhaps spells greater danger for the polity. It is even more alarming that the minister in charge of education is afflicted with a fathomless ignorance. All that she has absorbed is the ideology of her party that strives to wipe out difference and silence dissent. So in her defence of the violence being unleashed by the State through different routes, she cannot be bothered about truth, logic or sanity.

The above is from the Editorial in The Telegraph of 27.02.16

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Stop institute from giving away fake MBBS degrees: CIC

New Delhi: Expressing concern over quacks using fake MBBS degrees from an illegal institute, Central Information Commision has asked Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to take immediate action through MCI to stop the practice as it poses serious public threat.

During a hearing, Medical Council of India officials produced certain documents before Information Commissioner Yashovardhan Azad showing an institute by the name of Indian Board of Alternative Medicine, which has no official or legal sanctity and yet has been giving fake degrees for practice.

"...the matter which is truly alarming is the revelation by the Respondent (MCI) about the existence of the Institute by the name of Indian Board of Alternative Medicine with no official/legal sanctity and doctors are using such degree as 'MBBS (IAM)' for practice," Azad said.

The Commissioner said it was a matter of grave concern since public health is at high risk owing to these practitioners who have no proper knowledge or training to render medical assistance.

"In view of the seriousness of the issue, the Commission is of the considered opinion that a copy of this order may be sent to the Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to take immediate action through the MCI to curb this practice which is posing a threat to public health," he said.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

I am proud to be ‘anti-national’, says Rajdeep Sardesai Rajdeep Sardesai

In the 1990s, the country’s polity was divided by secular versus pseudo secular faultlines; now, another divide, and frankly far more insidious, is sought to be created between ‘national’ and ‘anti-national’ forces.
When I was first accused of being ‘anti-national’ on social media, I was angry. Now, a few years later, the current coarse political discourse, where desh bhakti certificates are being liberally distributed, tempts me to scream: garv se kaho hum desh-drohi hai (proud to be ‘anti-national’). Let me tell you why.
Yes, I am anti-national because I believe in an expanded definition of the right to free speech as spelt out in Article 19 of the Constitution. The only two ‘reasonable restrictions’ are incitement to violence and hate speech. What constitutes hate speech may be open to debate. Is, for example, the slogan of the Ram Janmabhoomi movement ‘Jo Hindu hit kee baat karega vahi desh pe raj karega’, which openly calls for a Hindu Rashtra, to be seen as violative of the law or not and does it spread enmity among communities? Is ‘Raaj karega khalsa’, the slogan of the Khalistanis, to be seen as seditious or not? In Balwant Singh versus State of Punjab, the Supreme Court ruled in the negative.
Yes, I am anti-national because while I am discomfited by the slogan shouting at JNU in support of Parliament terror convict Afzal Guru, I do not see it as an act of sedition. The sketchy video evidence made available shows the ‘students’ (we still don’t know if all of them were, indeed, students) shouting slogans like ‘Bharat kee barbaadi’, and hailing Afzal’s ‘martyrdom’.
The speeches are primarily an anti-government tirade but is it enough to see the students as potential terrorists or rather as political sympathisers of the azaadi sentiment? And is that ideological support enough to brand them as jihadis who must be charged with sedition?
Yes, I am anti-national because in a plural democracy I believe we must have a dialogue with Kashmiri separatists as we must with those in the North-East who seek autonomy. I will listen to student protestors in Srinagar or Imphal as I will to those in an FTII or a JNU.
Prosecute all those who break the law, incite violence, resort to terror but don’t lose the capacity to engage with those who dissent. The right to dissent is as fundamental as the right to free speech: shouting down alternative views, be they on prime time TV or on the street, is not my idea of India.
Yes, I am anti-national because I don’t believe in doublespeak on issues of nationalism. If support for Afzal Guru is to be seen as ‘sedition’, then at least half the erstwhile Cabinet in Jammu and Kashmir, where the BJP is in coalition with the PDP, would be held guilty.
After all, the PDP’s stated position has been to protest Afzal’s hanging as a miscarriage of justice. If the Kashmiri youth today see Afzal as someone who was framed, they should be challenged to a legal and political debate but can they be branded as ‘jihadists’ simply because their views are repugnant to the rest of the country?
Would we then by extension also suggest that the Hindu Mahasabha, which even today glorifies Nathuram Godse every January 30, even as the rest of India mourns the Mahatma, is an anti-national organisation? Should BJP MP Sakshi Maharaj’s defence of Godse be seen as an anti-national act or not, or will definitions of nationalism be shaped by the convenience of power politics?
Yes, I am anti-national because while I am a proud Hindu who wakes up to the Gayatri mantra, I also like a well done beef steak, which, according to BJP minister Mukhtar Naqvi, is a treasonous act, enough to pack me off to Pakistan. I celebrate the rich diversity of my country through food: Korma on Eid, pork sorpotel with my Catholic neighbours in Goa during Christmas and shrikhand during Diwali is my preferred diet. The right to food of my choice is again a freedom which I cherish and am unwilling to cede.
Yes, I am anti-national because I will fight lawless lawyers who attack defenceless women journalists in the name of ‘Bharat mata’ (don’t forget women journalists were targeted on a fateful day in December 1992 also) while policemen do little to stop the pseudo-patriots.
I am a proud Indian who admires the sacrifice of our jawans, which is why I believe our men on the border must get higher wages rather than be trapped in a bureaucratic tangle. I support gay rights, am against the death penalty on principle, find any violence in the name of caste, religion or gender unacceptable. And yes, I like raising inconvenient truths in the public domain: if that makes me anti-national, then so be it.
But above all else, I am anti-national because I believe in Ambedkar’s concept of a republican constitution that places the citizen and rule of law at its core. No one has the right to impose their vision of ‘cultural nationalism’ on a diverse society in the guise of ‘one nation, one religion, one culture’.
And when I get weary of the ‘desh-drohi’ abuse I will seek solace in the legend of my original icon, Muhammad Ali, who, as Cassius Clay, threw his gold medal into the river in protest at being denied entry into a whites-only restaurant. His act led him to be termed ‘anti-national’ and stripped of his Olympic medal. Several years later, as he lit the torch at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, it was America’s way of apologising to one of its greatest folk heroes. I hope some of you say sorry to me too one day!
Post-script: Last week, at the Delhi Gymkhana litfest, I suggested that the right to free speech must include the right to offend so long as it doesn’t incite violence. A former army officer angrily got up and shouted, “You are an anti-national who should be lynched right here!” When even the genteel environs of the Gymkhana club echo to such strains, we should all be very worried.

Rajdeep Sardesai is a senior journalist and author. The views expressed are personal.

Times Now First Denies Airing Doctored Video, Then Concedes it Did


Times Now has accused The Wire of running a “factually inaccurate” story about the showing of a doctored video on the channel. The charge is laughable. The story in question is an article by me, published on February 19, 2015, titled On Kanhaiya: It is Time to Stand Up and Be Counted.
The doctored video, created by persons unknown, was intended to portray JNU Students Union (JNUSU) president Kanhaiya Kumar, now in jail facing charges of sedition, as someone who shouted slogans in favour of Kashmir’s azadi(Hindi for independence). The video was aired on several TV channels, including Times Now, and the article in question noted this fact.
On the afternoon of February 19, Arnab Goswami called me and insisted that Times Now had not shown the video at all and that when BJP spokesman Sambit Patra attempted to show it on air, he had stopped Patra from doing so. Taking Goswami, someone whom I have known for years, at his word, I edited the article to remove the reference to Times Nowand added a note at the end stating:
In an earlier version of this article, Times Now was listed as one of the channels that broadcast the doctored tape of Kanhaiya Kumar. The channel’s head, Arnab Goswami has clarified that a BJP spokesman, Sambit Patra, sought to play the clip on his iPad during a debate but was not allowed to as the clip was not verified, and the clip was never played on the channel.

Soon thereafter, Times Now put up a notice on its channel (pictured above) in which it said the charge of having aired doctored footage was “factually incorrect”. When a reader of The Wire sent me the YouTube link which showed the doctored footage being aired on the channel, it became clear that Arnab Goswami had misled me.
After The Wire called Goswami out for having aired the doctored video,  his argument changed from ‘We never aired it’ to ‘We said the footage was unverified’. He then put out a 46-second, selectively edited version of his show with this misleading description:
Watch: The Newshour clip where BJP Spokesperson is told video put on Hindi channel had to be examined and could not be taken at face value.
The aim was to absolve himself of any legal or moral responsibility for having aired the forged clip, and treating it as fact in the questions he asked his studio guests. Forty-six seconds is all it takes to confirm that Times Now‘s claim – that Gowami told the BJP spokesman that the video “could not be taken at face value” – is itself a blatant lie.
How the doctored video was used
In this official recording of The Newshour programme, Goswami can clearly be heard repeatedly asking Patra (from 22:50 onward) to “show the video, show the video”. When Patra shows it, Goswami orders the Times Now camera to zoom in on it. “Show the video close by,” he says. After the forgery is aired, Goswami declares triumphantly, “I could clearly hear him [Kanhaiya] say, if that is indeed him in the video, I can clearly hear him say ‘leke rahenge azadi’.” He then turns to a guest, Anand Kumar from JNU, and says, “You are the one who is defending him. If this video is correct, then what are you going to say now?”
Neither during the airing of the clip by Patra nor immediately after does Goswami warn viewers that the contents of the video are completely unverified. It was left to another guest on the show, Swara Bhaskar, to object to the fact that the channel was airing an unverified clip. A few minutes later, while questioning Anand Kumar, Goswami says to him, “This is a video that is being shown by some Hindi channel. The point is that we will have to verify the video.” But then he immediately proceeds to question Kumar treating the video as completely authentic:
“The question to you Anand Kumar is this. There is Umar Khalid of the DSU, who is a member of a banned front organisation of the Maoists [sic], that has been established. … next to him is Kanhaiya in the video and what he’s saying is hum lekenge rahenge azadi. You know that Umar’s references to azadi were in the context of Kashmir. You can’t really turn it around to say, no, no, he is talking about azadi from BJP or sangh parivar. It cant be twisted to that point.
“If he did say these words, hum lekenge rahenge azadi, are you now going to say we must establish whether it was in the context of Kashmir or whether it was in a broad context, when you know he is standing next to Umar Khalid, and if you make that argument will someone accuse you of being blind to that facts that are coming there in your face.” [Emphasis added.]
After Anand Kumar comprehensively refutes these claims, Goswami agrees to give him the “benefit of the doubt since this video has to be examined” and concedes that “he could have been talking about azadi in another case”. But the recording of the hour-long show makes it clear that during his questioning of Kumar, Arnab had treated the contents of the fabricated video (that he had himself ordered Sambit Patra to play on air) as authentic.
I leave it to the readers of The Wire and the viewers of Times Now to watch the hour long clip and decide for themselves.

Every Indian Needs To Be Aware Of These 26 Rights That Have Been Granted To Us By The Law

By Sharangi Dutta
We all know that the Indian constitution is very intricate, and complex. Its complexity is such that we fail to know many of our basic rights, let alone understand them. It's ironic considering we often talk about the importance of knowing our fundamental rights; ask anyone about rights and they will give you their two cents about freedom of speech and you'll regret even bringing up the topic.
But, the reality is we ACTUALLY don't know all of our rights, and maybe it's not possible either. However, there are some rights that you can't afford to not know about, so we compiled a list containing a few of them that you should always keep in mind.

In 2011, the Supreme Court ruled that according to Section 497 of the IPC, a woman cannot be proceeded for her involvement in an adulterous relationship. In fact, the section says that she can't even be charged for being an instigator of the adultery.
Under Section 14 of the Hindu Marriage Act 1955, a couple cannot register a petition for divorce within a year of marriage. However, if the High Court feels that the petitioner is experiencing immense problems then the former can permit the latter to file for divorce.
Under Information Technology Act, 2000 voice and messages recorded in a tape recorder or phone can be used as an evidence at court. However, this depends on certain conditions like valid and important evidence can certainly be taken from the recorded conversations.
According to Indian Sarais Act, 1867 any individual can ask for water free of charge from any hotel at any time for themselves and their pets. Furthermore, he or she can use the washroom for free, and no one can stop them.It is your right to demand water from any hotel at any time.
A Supreme Court ruling states that no woman can be arrested before sunrise or after sunset in order to stop them from getting harassed in the wee hours. This can only be overturned if the police get a written document as a proof of why they require to arrest the woman at that time.
In 2013, Delhi Police announced that a woman can file an FIR at any police station regardless of the jurisdiction, and the police has to accept it exactly as she describes. It also says that investigation needs to be taken as per the statement of the woman.
Under Section 51 in The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, only women officers can search and arrest women offenders under strict privacy and decency.
According to the directions by Delhi Police, if a woman is unable to go to the police station to lodge a complaint then she can lodge the same via an email or registered post. The senior police officer then sends the email or registered post to the Station House Officer of the area of crime for proper verification of the document, so that an FIR can be lodged.
Article 22(1) and 22(2) that looks after the Preventive Detention in India says that no person who is arrested can be detained longer than 24-hours.
Under Section 23 of the Bill of Rights Act, every person is entitled to know why he or she is being arrested or questioned. He or she can also question the validity of the arrest if the warrant is not lawful.
In 2007 a Supreme Court ruling suggested that any police officer who refuses to lodge a complaint will be suspended and even face jail term.
t is mandatory that the names and other particulars of police personnel dealing with the interrogation and arrest of the person(s) is entered in the register.
Under Section 185 of Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 if a police officer finds 100 ml. of alcohol in a person's blood while driving then he or she can be arrested for drunken driving.
Under Section 498 of Indian Adultery Penal Code a married man who commits adultery with an unmarried woman or widow upon the latter's consent, can't be charged for the offence.
According to Article 38(1) and Article 21 of IPC, every woman is entitled to receive free legal aid in order to promote their welfare. A woman is often held wrong or humiliated when she goes to the police station to file a complaint, which is why she should always be accompanied by a lawyer.
Article 39 (A) of Indian Penal Code grants equal pay to women at their work places.
No rape survivor can be forced to go to the police station to provide her statement due to the threat of her family being put in danger, and the cops can't force her.
Section 294 of Indian Penal Code says obscenity in public is a criminal offence, but nothing specifically talks about kissing or hugging in public.
Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act, 2005 allows both males and females to equal inheritance of their father's property
Maternity Benefit Act 1961 states that no woman can be sacked from her employment regardless of any reason.
Section 160 of the Criminal Procedure Code states that women can be questioned in the presence of women constables at their home itself.
According to Indian Code of Criminal Procedure, a doctor has to attend a rape victim if she approaches herself for a medical examination.
In 2013, the health ministry directed doctors not to use 'rape' as a medical term and use it as their final call. It suggested that 'rape' is instead a legal term, and proper police papers is required to prove the offence.
In 2011, the Ministry of Women and Child Development ruled out against single man adopting a girl child in order to keep adoption clean and safer.
According to Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act of 1956, married couples can't adopt two children of same sex.

The Hotel Association of India (HAI) that manages over 280 hotels in India says that there is no such rule that denies admission to an unmarried couple in a hotel in India.

The above is from FB, posted by Karuna Sharma

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Is this how tolerant the BJP is?

A lawyer, who supported JNU student leader Kanhaiya Kumar, being attacked by some lawyers outside a Delhi court on Wednesday.

Police do not have evidence to back their claim that the JNU student leader was shouting anti-national slogans, says a senior official.

A senior Home Ministry official indicated on Wednesday that the Delhi Police may have to drop the sedition charges against Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union president Kanhaiya Kumar because they did not have evidence to back their claim that he was shouting anti-national slogans.
Though Delhi Police Commissioner B.S Bassi claimed they did have enough evidence, the Home Ministry official said the Delhi Police had once again written to television channels seeking raw footage of the event on February 9.
“There is some video footage available with the police, but the audio component is missing. It is not clear whether Kanhaiya actually shouted anti-national slogans. If there is no evidence, then the Delhi Police will have to drop the sedition charge when the charge sheet is filed,” the official said.
According to officials, the video footage of the event was made available to news channels by certain students.
Only a couple of TV channels were present at the event.
The FIR filed by the Delhi Police says a police team was present when two groups of students were leading a march at the JNU. According to the standard operating procedure, it is mandatory for the police to record any protest or gathering where they perceive trouble.
The official said the metropolitan magistrate did not have the power to grant bail in cases of sedition. If Kanhaiya wants to apply for bail, his lawyer would have to approach the sessions court.

What have I done to support Modi or India

One of our friends has asked me what I have done to help Modi or India.
Just as the Congress once raised the slogan "Indira is India", our BJP friends have coined the slogan that anyone against the BJP is anti-national and supporting Modi is supporting India. Of course their blinkered vision does not allow them to see how they have come to an understanding with the PDP in Kashmir which does not accept that Kashmir is a part of India?
First of all, let me say I do nothing.
HE through HIS grace allows me to do whatever I do or not do.
Fortunately, HE has not made me kill thousands of people in Gujarat in the name of religion.
HE has not made me kill, maim and terrorise innocent minority people just before elections so that the Hindu votes are polarised in my favour.
HE has not made me kill innocent people in the name of religion for storing so-called beef.
HE has not made me murder innocent youth by mentally torturing them and driving them to suicide.
HE has not made me cause violence in JNU and Patiala Court in the name of anti nationalism.
I am a tax-paying law-abiding citizen of my country who is willing to contribute to social causes within my financial limits and who is willing to point out anything wrong which goes on in the country although others may not agree with me. I believe in "Ekla cholo Re" even if no one accompanies you.
I just cannot help Modi because I believe he is a murderer and all killings in the aftermath of Godhra were engineered by him and his assistant Amit Shah. It is another matter that the judiciary took a very lenient view. But then the judge who passed judgement in his favour was promoted to the Supreme Court, just as Bassi, the present Police Commissioner in Delhi is being promoted as Commissioner of the Central Information Commission for carrying out all the dirty work against AAP in Delhi on the instruction of Modi. Bassi has also been pulled up by the SC for his handling of the JNU affair at Patiala Court.
The action that Modi has carried out at Hyderabad University where a young PHD student had to commit suicide, was not suicide but murder by Modi.
Posting doctored videos put out by the BJP's social media group to justify their actions is brain-washing just as Hitler used to do against the Jews.
There is a law in the country and action has to be taken within the law. What the ABVP is doing is just what Hitler's Nazi guards used to do. You should read the speech made by Kanhaiya who has been arrested on Sedition charges and was so mercilessly beaten up at Patiala Court. This is Kanhaiya's speech.
As far as AAP is concerned I was a ardent supporter and even made small monetary contributions. However, after the Prashant Bhushan/Yogendra Yadav episode, I have stopped my contributions. AAP has its faults. Its support of Nitish Kumar and indirectly Lalu Yadav was not favoured by many. But then Modi is considered a greater evil than Lalu. Lalu has made a few crores through corruption but Modi is destroying the entire country and may lead to its division.
AAP's support of Mamta in Bengal too is unpalatable but considering that AAP is looking for friends against Modi's onslaughts through the CBI and the police, his behaviour is understandable. Your enemy's enemy, is your friend.If you notice, Mamta herself is mysteriously silent on Modi's high-handedness in JNU for elections are near.
Vajpayee of the same BJP, with a much smaller majority was able to achieve much more during his tenure than Modi with his steam-rolling majority has been able to achieve. Have you wondered why?
The Muslims make up 20% of the population of India. You cannot just wish them away and they will vanish. You should bring them into the mainstream by educating them instead of allowing them to waste their time in the madarassas. Subsequent governments since independence have used them as vote banks, whether it was the Congress, TMC, or SP. Similarly the BJP is raising the bogie of Muslims to treat the Hindus as vote banks in which unfortunately, even educated people who have passed schools teaching secular education are falling prey.
Even after 69 years of Independence our Hindu leaders have not been able to remove the scourge of untouchability and superstitious beliefs which are creating murders in different parts of India when people marry outside their caste or Gothras or preventing women from entering temples. Instead they are wasting their time and making a fool of gullible Hindu population by killing people on the pretext of beef storing in refrigerators.
Reservation, which was to have been for just ten years has been allowed to continue after 70 years and as I see things, it will continue for another 150 years. Result - the efficient and intelligent people are going abroad and we are left with the useless people to run the government.
In the above circumstances, how can I support Modi or Rahul or the other motley band of politicians.
I will continue to criticise as long as they do not give me an honest government, where all children receive education irrespective of their caste or religion, they get proper food and clothes.
When you walk on the road and see children playing during school hours, don't you wonder what a waste of youth is happening India. Any of these children could become a Newton or an Einstein in future. Instead, they will become fodder in Mamata Banerjee's plan of things to receive Rs 1.5 lakhs or Rs 2.0 lakhs through clubs to capture booths and cast votes for TMC or any other party.
What a waste my friends and you expect me to be satisfied with Modi, who can do so much with his steam rolling majority, if he just took everyone along with him instead of acting like a religious bigot or warlord.
I myself come from what is now Bangladesh and earlier known as East Pakistan. We came over only in 1964 hence I very well know the pangs of being a religious minority.
A tooth for a tooth and an eye for an eye is no solution especially if you are a Hindu.
Our scriptures do not teach us thus.

That is why I have been advising each one of you to listen to the discourses of Smt Jaya Row on the Bhagavat Gita