QBullet: Modi on AgustaWestland Scam, Patidars Demand OBC Status

Read the latest news from the publications this morning.

6 min read
Crowd during Prime Minister Narendra Modis election campaign rally at Chennai in Tamil Nadu on Friday. (Photo: PTI)

1. Agusta Scam: Should Those Involved in ‘Helicopter Chori’ be Punished, Asks Modi

In a veiled attack on Sonia Gandhi over the controversial AgustaWestland deal, Prime Minister Narendra Modi raked up her Italian roots and indicated that the guilty, howsoever big they are, would be punished, reports The Indian Express.

Does anyone of your relatives live in Italy? Does any of my relatives live in Italy? I have not seen Italy. I have not been to Italy. Nor have I met anyone in Italy. If Italians have accused them what should we do? Those involved in helicopter chori (theft), should they be punished or not? 
Prime Minister Narendra Modi

The Supreme Court agreed to hear a PIL seeking registration of FIR against Sonia Gandhi, former PM Manmohan Singh and others whose names were mentioned by an Italian court in its verdict, according to a report in The Times of India.

Defence minister Manohar Parrikar also attacked Congress in Lok Sabha, saying the party has been implicated in almost every defence scam and that the government is hopeful the AgustaWestland probe will achieve what could not be done in the Bofors case. Defending Sonia Gandhi, Congress leader Jyoitraditya Scindia said, that she was a “sherni (lioness)” who will make them “repent” for it.

Sonia and Rahul Gandhi, Manmohan Singh and Ghulam Nabi Azad were released after they courted arrest at the ‘Save Democracy’ rally held at Jantar Mantar on Friday.

Read the full report here.

Also Read:
How Accurate Are Manohar Parrikar’s AgustaWestland Claims?

2. Uttarakhand Floor Test Fixed for 10 May, Nine Cong Rebel Can’t Vote: SC

The Supreme Court of India has ordered a court-monitored floor test to be held in Uttarakhand Assembly on 10 May, between 11 am and 1 pm. Nothing else shall be discussed in the Assembly during this period.

According to a report in The Hindu, BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya met State leaders on Thursday and took decisions on the strategies to be followed for the floor test.

Kailash Vijayvargiya tried to buy four of our MLAs – Ganesh Godiyal, Rajendra Bhandari, Rekha Arya and Anusuya Prasad Maikhuri – but they rejected the offer.
Kishore Upadhyay, Uttarakhand Pradesh Congress Committee President

The court has ordered the Chief Secretary and the state DGP to ensure all qualified members participate.

The court also ordered for the temporary lifting of the President’s rule in Uttarakhand during these two hours when the vote of confidence will take place.

Read the full report here.

3. No EBC, We Want OBC Status Only: Patidars

Patidars want the government to carry out a survey to include the community on the OBC list, reports The Times of India. The Gujarat government had recently announced 10 percent quota for the Economically Backward Class (EBC).

The announcement had come amid ongoing protests for reservations in jobs by members of the Patel community.

Protests for reservation turned violent after Hardik Patel got arrested. (Photo:<b> The Quint</b>)
Protests for reservation turned violent after Hardik Patel got arrested. (Photo: The Quint)
We are in touch with Bihar CM Nitish Kumar, West Bengal’s Mamata Banerjee and even Anna Hazare. Hazare has agreed to come to Gujarat and will address a rally in Ghatlodia or Ranip on 2 October. We will continue the agitation and Patidars have chalked out a detailed programme for the next six months. The Patidar community will stage a `Patel Gaurav Yatra’ which will begin at Khodaldham on 25 May and end at Umiya Dham Unjha on 26 June.To continue the stir, more than four lakh Patidars will also gather at Karamsad as a part of the Sardar Ekta Yatra.
Dharmik Malaviya, Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) convener told TOI

Read the full report here.

4. Most on Death Row Poor, From Backward Caste Groups: Law University Report

The Death Penalty Research Project at the National Law University in Delhi found that 80 percent of prisoners facing capital punishment had not completed school and nearly half had begun working before the age of 18, reports The Indian Express.

There are no reliable numbers of the total number of death row prisoners in India. There is also no official record with any Ministry or agency of the total number of prisoners executed since Independence. Fifty nine sections in 18 central laws, including 12 sections under the Indian Penal Code, including both homicide and non-homicide offences, carry the death penalty. Provisions in state laws are separate, and have not been put together in one list.
The Indian Express report

Read the full report here.

5. Migration to Metros Needs to be Tackled: Poll

An overwhelming number of respondents to a Livemint-instaVaani poll felt that India’s metro cities have not been planned well.

The respondents blamed migration from rural areas and smaller cities to metro cities for their sorry state of affairs and called for measures to address it. Although steps like the National Rurban Mission aimed at “reducing the burden of migration to the cities”– have been taken recently, the general sense is that what’s been done is too little, too late. A total of 512 respondents across major metros of the country were polled to assess their views about their cities’ development.
Livemint report

Read the full report here.

6. Bombay High Court Decriminalises Possession of Beef

The Bombay High Court in a landmark judgement diluted the restrictions and removed the highly reprehensible provision that could be abused by the law enforcement agencies and vigilante groups.

This was in response to a year old law enacted by the Maharashtra government imposing a total ban on beef in the state.

Relaxing the law, a division bench of the Bombay High Court comprising Justice Abhay Oka and Justice SC Gupte, said:

...if a person from whom beef has been found did not have prior knowledge of the meat, then he cannot be prosecuted. Only conscious possession can be held as an offence...

Read the full report on The Quint.

7. Confusion Takes Wing as Hindon Airbase Reacts to ‘Infiltration Bid’

A man was arrested after he allegedly intruded into the high-security Hindon airbase in Ghaziabad, reports The Hindustan Times.

Sonu Jatav, a 21-year-old resident of Loni area in Ghaziabad thrashed the personnel before disappearing into the dense jungle inside the air base for five hours before he got caught.

The man seems to be insane and says he hails from Indrapuri near Loni. This is not a case of any terror-linked activity, but a case of trespass.
Dharmendra Singh, Senior Superintendent of Police at Ghaziabad

Read the full report here.

8. Modi Running a One-Man “Presidential Government”: Arun Shourie

Former union minister Arun Shourie on Friday hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi accusing him of “narcissism” and of running a one-man “Presidential government” the direction of which was “dangerous” for India.

BJP leader and former union minister Arun Shourie. (Photo: Reuters)
BJP leader and former union minister Arun Shourie. (Photo: Reuters)

Shourie, a Cabinet minister in the Vajpayee government who has drifted away from BJP in recent years, called the Modi government “a Presidential government without checks and balances” and said that the direction of the government under his supervision “is not good for India”.

Read the full report on The Quint.

9. Left, ABVP Students Clash in Jadavpur After a Film Screening

Women were allegedly molested and BJP leader Roopa Ganguly was blocked from entering Jadavpur University in Kolkata after student factions clashed over the screening of a political drama Buddha in a Traffic Jam on Friday night.

 Left and ABVP students clash with each other during the screening of the film <i>“Buddha In A Traffic Jam”</i> at Jadavpur University campus in Kolkata on 6 May  2016. (Photo: IANS)
Left and ABVP students clash with each other during the screening of the film “Buddha In A Traffic Jam” at Jadavpur University campus in Kolkata on 6 May 2016. (Photo: IANS)
We all know Anupam Kher’s views in the whole debate on whatever happened in JNU. He is acting in this film which has divisive content. We are protesting that.
Sounak Mukherjee, Student

Read the full report on The Quint.

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