The Hindu Important Articles 28 April 2018
Govt. can seek rethink on Joseph’s name: CJI
Dismisses charge of ‘cherry-picking’ in Indu Malhotra’s case
Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra on Thursday said the government was free to send back Uttarakhand Chief Justice K.M. Joseph’s name to the Supreme Court Collegium for re-consideration.
Dismissing claims that the government had “cherry-picked” senior advocate Indu Malhotra for appointment as Supreme Court judge over Justice Joseph, Chief Justice Misra, heading a three-judge Bench, said it was “unthinkable, unimaginable, inconceivable” for the court to stay the presidential warrant for the appointment of Ms. Malhotra.
“As per Constitution Bench decisions, the government can send the file [Justice Joseph’s] back for re-consideration… When they send it back, we [the Collegium] will consider it appropriately,” the Chief Justice said.
The government has already sent Justice Joseph’s file back to the Collegium for re-consideration. The grounds for returning the file include Justice Joseph’s relative juniority among High Court Chief Justices. The government has said he is the 42nd in the All-India High Court Judges Seniority List and there were 10 High Court Chief Justices senior to him. Besides, the government said, the Kerala High Court was too small a court to be represented by two Supreme Court judges. The Supreme Court already has Justice Kurian Joseph, the fifth senior-most judge and a Collegium member.
Barely an hour after the government communication to the CJI was made known, an urgent mention was made by 100 lawyers of the Supreme Court to stay the appointment of Ms. Malhotra. They said that though they were “solidly behind” Ms. Malhotra, they were equally anguished by the fact that she was cleared over Justice Joseph. The names of both Ms. Malhotra and Justice Joseph were recommended on January 11 by the Collegium. The Collegium had then recorded that there was no match for Justice Joseph in merit.
13 children die as train rams school van
The incident occurred at an unmanned crossing in Kushinagar district of east Uttar Pradesh
Thirteen children aged between 7 and 11 died on the spot and seven others were critically injured when a train rammed the school van carrying them at an unmanned crossing in Kushinagar district of east Uttar Pradesh on Thursday.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath ordered a commissioner-levepl probe, but phad to face angry protests from locals who gathered in hundreds and tried to prevent his cavalcade from reaching the accident site.
Mr. Adityanath, later in the evening, suspended two education department officials and two transport officials in Kushinagar. An FIR is to be filed against Karim Jahan Khan, Principal of Divine Public Mission School to which the students belonged, for running the institute without proper registration.
The accident took place at the unmanned crossing between Tamukhi Road and Dudahi station at around 6:45 am, the Railways said. The passenger train was travelling from Siwan to Gorakhpur.
While an official probe report will be submitted later on Thursday night, Mr. Adityanath told reporters in Kushinagar that it prima facie appeared to be the fault of the school van driver, who is believed to have been talking on the phone using earphones. Mr. Adityanath also raised doubts about the age of the van driver who, according to local accounts, did not pay heed to warnings.
Police identified the van driver, who was also critically injured, as Nayaz Ansari. Among the dead were four girls. Many of the victims were siblings. Four critically injured children were rushed to the Baba Raghav Das Medical College in Gorakhpur. Mr. Adityanath met the families of the victims and inquired about the injured. He announced an ex-gratia of Rs. 2 lakh to the families of the dead and Rs. 50,000 for the injured.
Goyal orders probe
Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal also ordered a senior-level probe.
The Railways too announced an ex-gratia Rs. 2 lakh to the kin of the dead, Rs. 1 lakh for those with serious injuries and Rs. 50,000 for other injuries.
PM okays diversion of 77 ha of forest land for bullet train
Gujarat, Maharashtra told to speed up clearances for Rs. 1 lakh crore project
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given in-principle approval for the diversion of 77 hectares of forest land for the Rs. 1.08 lakh crore bullet train project between Mumbai and Ahmedabad.
The clearances have come with a rider that the remaining deficiencies on pending claims under the Forest Rights Act, 2006, in proposals submitted by Gujarat and Maharashtra, must be ironed out at the earliest. The two States have also been told to coordinate closely with the National High Speed Rail Corporation Limited (NHSRCL) to speed up the project.
“The State governments and the NHSRCL must coordinate closely to enhance execution speed of the project,” read the minutes of the meeting between the Prime Minister and the Chief Secretaries of Gujarat, Maharashtra and Dadra & Nagar Haveli on Wednesday. The application for clearance of the 77.45 hectares, spread over 42 villages in the two States, was submitted by Maharashtra on February 7, 2018, and Gujarat on April 20, 2018. The diversion, allowed under Section 2(2) of the Forest Conservation Act, 1980, could be the highest after about 47 hectares of forest land was diverted for the ambitious Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL) project and another 58 hectares for the Rs. 45,000 crore Dedicated Freight Corridor between Mumbai and Dadri. “We have been on the conservative side while approving this diversion,” said an official of the State government.
During the meeting, the Prime Minister was also informed of the ‘disturbances’ in several villages of Maharashtra and Gujarat, where locals are protesting against the project.
No clarity on fate of merged villages
EC seeks clarification from MHA on location of villages
Four years after Bifurcation, clarity is yet to emerge on several villages located in the seven mandals that were transferred to the successor State of Andhra Pradesh (AP) from Telangana.
The fate of the electors in several such villages is not clear as is evident from the queries raised by the Election Commission in its recent letter addressed to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs. The EC dealing with the proposed increase in Legislative Assembly seats in Telangana (from 119 to 153) and Andhra Pradesh (from 175 to 225) said some discrepancies had been noticed in the extent of the Assembly constituencies on the borders of Khammam in Telangana and East and West Godavari districts of AP. The entire area of Kukunoor, Velairpadu and Burgampahad mandals not including revenue villages of Pinapaka, Morampalli Banzar, Burgampahad, Nagineniprolu, Krishnasagar, Tekula, Sarapaka, Iravendi, Mothepattinagar, Uppusaka, Sompalli and Nakripeta under the Palvancha Revenue Division, and Chintoor, Kunavaram, Vararamachandrapuram and Bhadrachalam (not including the revenue village of Bhadrachalam) under the Bhadrachalam Revenue Division were transferred to the successor State of AP.
Revenue villages Seetharamanagaram, Sridhara Velair, Gumpanapalli, Ganapavaram, Ibrahimpet and Ravigudem were excluded from the Pinapaka Assembly constituency, but there was no mention in the records as to in which Assembly constituency these excluded villages should be included.
Bhadrachalam Assembly constituency pointed another instance of discrepancy in that Bhadrachalam revenue village was retained in Telangana, but there was no mention as to in which Assembly constituency remaining part of Bhadrachalam mandal has to be kept. The discrepancies arose on perusal of the request from the MHA to determine the exact number of seats including those belonging to SC/ST communities consequent on the decision to enhance Assembly seats in the two successor States. The Union Home Ministry, on its part, addressed a letter on April 19 asking the two States to clarify the position of these villages so that the exact number of SC/ST seats both could be worked out as there was no response from the two governments on the issue.
IIIT student commits suicide
A student of the Indian Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad, committed suicide by hanging on Thursday, police said.
The deceased Puli Surendra Kumar Reddy, hailing from Guntur, was a B. Tech final year student.
According to Gachibowli sub-inspector Ch. Venkatesh, the incident took place before 12 noon. “Surendra Kumar’s friend Sai Sahith tried to call him on his phone, but he did not answer. Sahith then went to his hostel room and found the body,” he said.
The victim was found hanging to a fan with a bedsheet, the sub-inspector added.
Police said that a suicide note was found near the body. “From the suicide note, we can understand that he was under some pressure. There were some family issues as well and it also seems that some comparisons were being drawn with him and others,” Mr. Venkatesh said.
A complaint was filed by eyewitnesses and a case under Section 174 of the CrPC has been filed.
3 Chennai students drown in backwaters of Mulshi dam
They had come to participate in a summer camp
Three students of a Chennai-based school drowned in the backwaters of the Mulshi dam, 45 km from Pune city, on Wednesday evening.
The students identified as Danish Raja, Santhosh K. and Sarvanna, all aged 13, were studying in ECI Matriculation Higher School in Chennai’s Tondiarpet area, and were part of a three-day summer camp near Mulshi’s Katarkhadak village.
Twenty students, including four girls, had come down from Chennai accompanied by four teachers for the camp being held at the ‘Jackuline School of Thought’ in Katarkhadak village.
Tragedy struck the camp on the first day itself as the three students, who could not swim, ventured into the deep waters of the dam.
Case of negligence
Police inspector Suresh Nimbalkar from the Paud police station said that a case of negligence had been lodged under Section 304 (a) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) against the director of the Jackuline School of Thought, as well as against two of the teachers for permitting the boys to imprudently venture into the waters without due precaution.
Sent for post-mortem
While Danish’s body was retrieved on Wednesday night itself, those of the remaining two students were fished out from the Khamboli lake on Thursday.
The bodies were sent for post- mortem at the Government Hospital in Paud.
Mulsi Tehsil authorities said that the parents of the deceased children had reached the spot of the tragedy to claim the bodies. The final rites of the deceased students are to be performed in Chennai.