QMumbai: Farmers Won’t Allow Ministers to Unfurl Flag
Maharashtra farmer leaders won’t allow ministers to unfurl the national flag on independence day and other stories.
After HC Snub, NIA To Reframe Charges Against Areeb Majeed
After failing to prove that Kalyan youth Areeb Majeed was a Daesh (Islamic State) operative, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) will try to have another go at it by reframing the charges. The Bombay High Court on Wednesday refused to charge the Kalyan youth as being an active member of the terrorist organisation.
The NIA had previously in its exhaustive 8,000-page charge-sheet filed against Majeed in May 2015 claimed he fought “holy wars” and physically participated in jihad in the Middle East as an operative of the terror group.
Majeed was arrested by the NIA in November 2014 and booked under various provisions of the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).
A previous NIA court had earlier ruled that evidence against Majeed was not conclusive enough to prove that he was an active operative of the terrorist organisation. The NIA, which moved the High Court challenging the orders of the special court, said it had “material evidence” to prove the culpability of Majeed.
Won’t Allow Ministers To Unfurl Flag: Maha Farmer Leaders
Members of the steering committee comprising representatives of various farmer groups yesterday said guardian ministers won’t be allowed to unfurl the national flag at district headquarters on August 15 if the government fails to announce an unconditional loan-waiver. “The loan-waiver announced by the BJP-led government in the state is full of flaws and riders. Those should be done away with,” Raghunanthdada Patil, a member of the committee told reporters in Mumbai.
“There should be a total loan-waiver for farmers. Only then will we allow ministers to unfurl the national flag,” Patil said.
A ‘chakka jam’ (shut down) protest will be organised all over the state on August 14, MLA Bachhu Kadu and Maharashtra Kisan Sabha leader Ajit Navle said. “If the government ignores our demands, there will be a fresh farmers’ agitation in Maharashtra,” they said.
Thane Woman Held For Pushing Minor Daughter Into Flesh Trade
The police have arrested a 30-year-old woman for allegedly pushing her teenaged daughter into flesh trade.
Based on a tip-off, the sleuths of the district rural police’s anti-human trafficking cell raided a residential locality at Kashimira in Mira Road area here on Thursday and rescued the 14-year-old girl, a police official said today.
The police sent a decoy customer who contacted the girl’s mother in Kashimira. A police team, which was already waiting at the spot, then nabbed the woman and rescued the girl, he said.
Maharashtra Ministers Prakash Mehta, Subhash Desai Offer To Resign, CM Fadnavis Strikes Down Proposal
Maharashtra Housing Minister Prakash Mehta and Industries Minister Subhash Desai, battling charges of corruption levelled by the Opposition, offered to resign on Saturday. Chief Minsiter Devendra Fadnavis, however, turned down the offer.
Desai met the CM on Saturday morning, a day after Fadnavis announced in the state assembly that the Lokayukta will probe the corruption charges against Mehta and an independent probe would be held against Desai. Late Friday night, Mehta met Fadnavis and offered to resign. Mehta called on the chief minister after he ordered the investigation into graft charges in at least three housing projects for alleged violation of norms and keeping the CM in the dark about the decisions. Mehta was told since the probe had been ordered, let the report come out.
Desai said, “I felt I should not be a minister when an inquiry had been initiated. For this reason I met the CM and offered my resignation. He has, however, refused to accept the resignation and asked me to continue. I will fully cooperate in the inquiry and accept its findings.”
Desai has been accused by the Opposition of denotifying 31,000 acres of land to provide financial benefit to private developers.Desai in his defence had claimed while the land was denotified it was done following laiddown rules and not to benefit any individual in particular.
Tribals In Mumbai’s Aarey To Protest On Independence Day For Freedom From Environmental Destruction
Opposing the reservation of land for the Metro car shed and other construction activities at Aarey Colony, tribal residents and NGOs will hold a silent protest march on Independence Day. The Aarey Chhodo Andolan (leave Aarey protest) march will start from Marol police station to the Aarey picnic spot.
Protestors want freedom from environmental destruction of Aarey, which is a no-development zone.
The NGO Watchdog Foundation, which will participate in the protest, is up in arms against the slum rehabilitation scheme and any projects that harm the city’s green lungs.
Godfrey Pimenta, trustee of the NGO, said, “We are protesting to highlight these issues that threaten the green cover. The metro car shed could be shared between Metro 1 and 3 by realigning the proposed Metro 3.”
Vivian D’souza of Bombay East Indian Association said at least 150 residents would join the protest. “The east Indians have lost their land because of the wanton developement over the years. People from across 60 villages are protesting against any project that harms the environment.”
Residents of Aarey’s 27 tribal villages had protested against a government study over Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) schemes in Aarey.
(Source: Hindustan Times)
Metro III Will See Heavy Curbs On Building Projects Along Route
Builders will have to submit their design plans and take clearance from the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC) for every development project which falls within 50 metres (160 feet) on either side of the 33.5km-long metro system.
TOI has also learned that even after the metro is completed, no development will be permitted up to 6.5m or 20 feet on either side from the outer boundary of the metro tunnel. This is likely to affect redevelopment of many old and dilapidated buildings along the entire congested Girgaum stretch from where the metro line will pass through.
Construction experts also warned that building heights close to the metro tunnel and stations could be restricted in the future. Structural engineer Jamshed Sukhadwalla, a Girgaum resident, said, "If builders think they can develop tall buildings near the metro line and reap a bonanza, then they are sadly mistaken.''
(Source: Times of India)
Mumbai's First Ganesh Mandal Turns 125 This Year!
It's a slushy Friday evening in Girgaum. Keshavji Naik Chawl is a hotbed of activity. "This time, we are making a replica of the famous Ganpatipule temple of Ratnagiri," says Vinod Satpute, co-organiser and member of the Shree Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Sanstha, which enjoys the honour of holding the first sarvajanik Ganesh mandal in Mumbai, inspired by the clarion call of freedom fighter Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak. The celebrations hold special significance this year since the sanstha turns 125.
Like every year, a two-and-a-half feet idol will arrive here from a Girgaum workshop for the Ganpati festivities. "Initially, it was an informal affair, with a few families participating in the celebrations. As community festivals became popular, more members joined in and gradually, it toot the shape of a festival," says another organiser, Dipesh Kolge, speaking of participation from the 150 tenements that make up the chawl.
It was on September 15, 1901 that Tilak, who was in the city to attend the Sarvajanik Sabha (a political organisation) meeting, visited the mandal. "As founder of the Sarvajanik Ganesh festival, he was invited to many pandals. He decided to start his visit from here," says Satpude. Unlike other famed mandals, this one has no queues, CCTV cameras or metal detectors. "Everyone is free to come and seek darshan. Although, this year, celebrations are on a grander scale, we will have no loudspeakers, dhol-tasha or decor. We want to continue to keep it simple. Because Tilak's idea behind sarvajanik Ganeshotsav was to get people together."
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