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Congress targets CBI offices across country, Rahul arrested

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New Delhi: Congress workers and party leaders on Friday launched protests outside CBI offices across the country but nowhere were the scenes as chaotic as outside the CBI headquarters in the capital where party president Rahul Gandhi led the ‘CBI Gherao.’ As pandemonium erupted, Rahul and several fellow leaders were arrested even as they alleged that the central government is bringing down democratic institutions.

The protests have been organised to question the decision to send CBI chief Alok Verma on leave. Congress has levelled the charge that it is because Verma had begun asking questions about the Rafale deal that he was removed. And although CBI has clarified that Verma is still the chief and only temporarily asked to go on leave pending probe into allegations of misconduct against him, Congress remained defiant in its demand for his reinstatement.

Congress workers attempted to break barricades set up outside CBI headquarters while slogans were raised against BJP and the central government. There were also slogans against Prime Minister-led Appointments Committee of the Cabinet which had issued the orders with Rahul saying PM Modi was dismantling democratic institutions. Many of his fellow protestors were detained while Rahul himself courted arrest.

 

Meanwhile, Delhi Traffic Police said vehicular movement on Lodhi Road, CGO Complex, Bhishma Pitamah Marg, Sai Baba Chowk and near Dayal Singh College had been affected due to the large assembly of Congress workers.

Elsewhere, protests were organised near CBI headquarters in Lucknow, Bengaluru and Patna. Water cannons were used against Congress workers in Chandigarh.

BJP – which had earlier said the decision to send Verma on leave was to maintain the integrity of CBI – countered Friday’s protests by saying that the Congress has lost sight of real issues. “Congress doesn’t have any people’s issues to raise that is why they are taking up these non-issues. We should wait for the investigation report,” said Home Minister Rajnath Singh. Finance minister Arun Jaitley too justified the action taken and slammed the protests against it. “The government has no intention of targeting anyone or any institution.

The government only wants CBI to maintain its integrity and professionalism,” he said. “Recent developments had eroded CBI credibility.

SC even further strengthened criteria of fairness.”

Interestingly, the protests carried on well after a CJI-led Supreme Court panel said that the probe against Verma – and CBI No. 2 Rakesh Asthana – will be monitored by retired SC judge AK Patnaik. The apex court also said that the report must be submitted in two weeks and that the interim head of CBI – M Nageshwar Rao – will not take any policy decisions. It also issued notices to CVC and the Centre – asking for their replies – after Verma had filed a petition against the decision to send him on leave.

Verma and Asthana have accused each other on a number of levels including corruption, official misconduct and/or creating hurdles within CBI. The premier investigative agency has been left red-faced and a probe has been launched into the allegations and counter-allegations.

The opposition is also asking the PM what the urgency of packing up Verma at 2 am on October 24 was. “This has never happened in India. You send a CBI chief on leave in the early hours and then seal his office. Why?” asked Congress leader Anand Sharma.

Congress leader in the selection panel of CBI chief Mallikarjun Kharge said the Government had violated not just the statute but also the SC judgment of 1997 in the Vineet Narain case where the top court had ruled that the CBI chief must get a fixed two-year tenure to preserve the institution’s integrity.

The judgment says notwithstanding the age of superannuation of the CBI chief he will remain in the job for two years. The judgment also says that the selection committee will be kept in the loop even in matters of transfer of the CBI chief.

The Congress is holding a protest across India in the state capitals against the CBI changes and alleging that the PM is corrupt and acted in order to stop a probe into the Rafale scam.

Present at the Delhi protest on Friday were CPI leader D Raja, senior opposition leader Sharad Yadav and Congress veterans Ashwani Kumar, Kumari Selja and Pramod Tewari.

Former law minister Kumar had to resign from the post after reports that he had vetted a CBI affidavit in the coal scam matter the SC was hearing.

As Rahul Gandhi led the protests on the CBI shake-up and was stopped from going near the CBI headquarters, he said the Congress and the entire opposition would ensure that the PM didn’t get away with corruption.

“We won’t let the watchman steal,” Gandhi said as party workers hailed his speech and chanted the ‘Chowkidar chor hai’ slogans.


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National

Hindu woman-Muslim man marraige not ‘regular or valid’ but child born is legitimate: SC

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New Delhi: A marriage of a Hindu woman with a Muslim man is not a “regular or valid” but the child born out of such wedlock is legitimate, the Supreme Court held.

It also said that the legal effect of such an irregular marriage is that a wife is entitled to get dower but cannot inherit the husband’s property.

The court held that the child born in an irregular marriage is legitimate just like in the case of a valid marriage and is entitled to inherit the property of the father.

 

A bench of justices N V Ramana and M M Shantanagoudar upheld the order of the Kerala High Court by which it was ruled that the son of a couple – Mohammed Ilias and Valliamma (who was Hindu at the time of marriage) – was legitimate and was entitled for share in his father’s property according to law.

“We conclude that the marriage of a Muslim man with an idolater or fire?worshipper is neither a valid nor a void marriage, but is merely an irregular marriage. Any child born out of such wedlock is entitled to claim a share in his father’s property,” the bench said.

The top court while dismissing the appeal against the high court order said that since Hindus are idol worshippers, which includes worship of physical images or statues through offering of flowers and adornment, it is clear that the marriage of a Hindu woman with a Muslim man is merely an irregular one.

It was hearing a property dispute matter in which Shamsuddin, son of Ilias and Valliamma, claimed share in the ancestral property through inheritance after the death of his father.

It said “the legal effect of an irregular marriage is that in case of consummation, though the wife is entitled to get dower, she is not entitled to inherit the properties of the husband. But the child born in that marriage is legitimate just like in the case of a valid marriage, and is entitled to inherit the property of the father.”

The court, on the other hand, said that the effect of a void marriage is that it does not create any civil right or obligations between the parties and the children born out of such wedlock are illegitimate.

The bench said that under Muslim law, a marriage is not a sacrament but a civil contract and there are three types of marriage – valid, irregular and void.

The court said that high court relied on principles of Islamic law to conclude that such rules do not treat the marriage of a Muslim with a Hindu woman as void, and confers legitimacy upon children born out of such wedlock.

Referring to this law, the bench said that a marriage which is not valid may be either void or invalid.

“A void marriage is one which is unlawful in itself, the prohibition against such a marriage being perpetual and absolute. An invalid marriage is described as one which is not unlawful in itself, but unlawful for something else…(like absence of witnesses),” the bench said.

Shamsuddin’s claim over property was opposed by his cousins who alleged that his mother was not the legally wedded wife of Ilias and she was a Hindu by religion at the time of marriage.

They claimed that she had not converted to Islam at the time of her marriage, and thus Shamshuddin being the son of Valliamma, is not entitled to any share in Ilias’s property.

The top court said that it was not disputed that Valliamma was the wife of Ilias and contrary to the claims, birth register records maintained by statutory authorities indicate that Shamshuddin was their son.

“On the contrary, he is the legitimate son of Mohammed Ilias, and consequently is entitled to inherit the shares claimed in the estate of his father,” it said.

It said that it was also not denied that Ilias and Valliamma were living together as husband and wife at Thiruvananthapuram.

“Under these circumstances, in our considered opinion, the trial court and the high court were justified in concluding, based on the preponderance of probabilities, that Valliamma was the legally wedded wife of Mohammed Ilias, and the plaintiff (Shamshuddin) was the child born out of the said wedlock,” it held.

The bench also upheld the finding of the high court that though Shamshuddin was born out of a ‘fasid’ (irregular) marriage, he cannot be termed as an illegitimate son of Ilias.

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National

9 men including teenager arrested by Maharashtra ATS for links with ISIS

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Mumbai: Nine men including a teenager have been arrested for terror links from Maharashtra’s Mumbra, Thane and Aurangabad.

Maharashtra’s Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) alleged that all of them are linked to the ISIS terror group.

The Maharashtra ATS was investigating the presence of sleeper cell ahead of Republic Day.

 

“Based on reliable information, total 9 youths have been brought for questioning. Inquiries are in progress. Further details will be informed in due course,” said ATS.

ATS also said that certain chemicals, powder, mobile phones, hard drives SIM cards, acid bottle, sharp knives etc were seized during searches.

A case has been registered under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act 1967.

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Priyanka named Cong Gen Secy for UP East, may contest from Rae Bareli

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Mumbai :Priyanka Gandhi Vadra took the political plunge on Wednesday, just a few months before the Lok Sabha election with Congress president Rahul Gandhi naming his sister as the All India Congress Committee General Secretary for Uttar Pradesh East.

Priyanka Gandhi will take charge in the first week of February 2019. She is likely to contest the Lok Sabha election from the Gandhi bastion of Rae Bareli, sources told Zee News. The seat is currently represented in the Lok Sabha by her mother Sonia Gandhi.

Speaking on the development, senior Congress leader Motilal Vohra said, “The responsibility given to Priyanka ji is very important. This will not only have an effect on eastern Uttar Pradesh but also other regions.”

 

The Congress also appointed Jyotiraditya Scindia as the General Secretary for Uttar Pradesh West and KC Venugopal as Congress General Secretary (Organisation).

Venugopal remains the AICC General Secretary in-charge for Karnataka, a state the Congress is in power in alliance with the Janata Dal Secular of former prime minister HD Deve Gowda.

Jyotiraditya Scindia, the Congress Lok Sabha MP from Guna in Madhya Pradesh and one of the architects of the party’s victory in the recent assembly election in the state, will handle Uttar Pradesh West as the party General Secretary.

“Hon’ble Congress President Shri Rahul Gandhi has appointed Shri K C Venugopal as AICC General Secretary (organisation) with immediate effect He will continue in his role as AICC General Secretary In-Charge for Karnataka. The note reads – The Party appreciates the contribution of Shri Ashok Gehlot as AICC General Secretary (Organisation). Hon’ble Congress President has also appointed Smt Priyanka Gandhi Vadra as AICC General Secretary for Uttar Pradesh East. She will be taking charge with effect on first week of February 2019. Hon’ble Congress President has also appointed Shri Jyotiraditya Scindia as AICC General Secretary for Uttar Pradesh West with immediate effect. The Party appreciates the contribution of Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad as AICC General Secretary of Uttar Pradesh He will now be AICC General Secretary for Haryana with immediate effect,” read the Congress press release.

Uttar Pradesh, the biggest state in the Lok Sabha with 80 seats, is likely to see a triangular contest between the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance, Samajwadi-Party-Bahujan Samaj Party combine and Congress in the upcoming Lok Sabha election.

Reacting to the development, BJP leader Sambit Patra said, “This is not a challenge for BJP. This was expected. It’s family dynasty and reflects that Rahul Gandhi has failed. And in future, Robert Vadra too will enter politics. Only a Gandhi can become president of the party.”

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