SC seeks response from Centre, ECI on a plea seeking voting rights for those stationed outside their constituency - The Daily Guardian
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SC seeks response from Centre, ECI on a plea seeking voting rights for those stationed outside their constituency

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New Delhi [India], February 18 (ANI): Supreme Court on Thursday issued notice to the Union of India (UoI) and Election Commission of India (ECI) on a petition seeking a direction to take steps to ensure access to voting to registered voters who are stationed outside the constituency, including students, business personnel, NRIs and business personnel.
A three-judge bench of the apex court, headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Sharad Arvind Bobde and also comprising Justice A S Bopanna and Justice V Ramasubramanian issued notice to the respondents, UoI and ECI on hearing the petition filed by K Sathyan, through his lawyer, Kaleeswaram Raj.
“We issue a notice to the ECI and UoI and seek a response from them on the petition,” the CJI led bench said today.
Raj, in his PIL, sought appropriate directions to the respondents, UoI and ECI, to take steps to ensure that, access to voting is ensured to all registered voters who are stationed outside the constituency like internal migrant workers, internal migrant employees and business personnel.
The petitioner also sought that a direction needs to be given to the respondents for the extension of postal ballot facility and/or Electronically transmitted Postal Ballot System (ETPBS) to all registered voters who are stationed outside their constituency.
The petition said also the respondents — UoI and ECI — be directed for the introduction of a secured remote electronic voting system and extending its benefit to all registered voters who are stationed outside their constituency.
The petitioner also sought a direction to the respondents to notify further classes under Section 60(c)of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, so that postal ballot facility is expected to classes and categories of registered voters identified who are posted outside their constituency.
The petitioner also sought that a double database for storing the transactions in Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) should be made, namely a central database and a local database, which would drastically reduce the chance for manipulation of data and EVMS.
He also, in his petition, sought that the SC should pass appropriate directions for evolving an OTP based system for the purpose of fault free identification of voters without infringing their privacy right section.
The installation of CCTV in all the polling booths should be made, across the country so as to ensure probity in the process of voting, the petition said.
Steps should be taken to curtail misuse of the assisted voting for blind and physically challenged persons by notifying that a companion to such persons shall be given to either an immediate family member or an officer from the booth, the petition said.
The respondents should be directed to take appropriate steps to curb multiple voting by introducing double database of registered voters in an electoral roll, (both central and local) and by the introduction of a unique identification number or bar code for all the identity cards, the petition said. (ANI)

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COVID-19: Travellers from Maharashtra, Kerala need RT-PCR negative report to enter Rajasthan

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Jaipur (Rajasthan) [India], February 25 (ANI): Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Thursday announced that people travelling from Maharashtra and Kerala to Rajasthan will need an RT-PCR negative report to enter the state in the view of COVID-19.
The decision was taken during a COVID-19 review meeting chaired by Gehlot.
In the meeting, it was decided that a vaccination awareness camp will be launched from the first week of March, Gehlot said in a video posted on his Twitter handle.
He has urged people to follow all COVID-19 guidelines and avoid any kind of carelessness.
Expressing concerns over the rising COVID-19 cases in the neighbouring states, Gehlot had called a meeting with officials.
According to the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), there are 53,153 active COVID-19 cases in Kerala, while 60,559 active cases are in Maharashtra.
There are 1,204 active COVID-19 cases in Rajasthan, according to MoHFW. (ANI)

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Kerala court dismisses plea against bail to actor Dileep

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Kochi (Kerala) [India], February 25 (ANI): Additional Special Sessions Court in Kochi on Thursday dismissed the petition seeking cancellation of bail granted to Malayalam actor Dileep, who is the eighth accused in the Kerala actress attack case.
The prosecution had approached the trial court for cancellation of bail arguing that Dileep had intimidated two witnesses in the case to make statements in his favour.
Dileep pointed out that the Crime Branch which probed the matter had not found any evidence on this allegation.
The actor was in jail for over two months before being released on bail.
Dileep has been charged with conspiracy in the case in which an actor, who has worked in Malayalam, Tamil, and Telugu films, was allegedly abducted and molested inside her car by a group of men, who had forced their way into the vehicle on the night of February 17, 2017. She later escaped. (ANI)

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Railways to reactivate ‘UTS ON MOBILE app’ to ensure social distancing at stations

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New Delhi [India], February 25 (ANI): The Ministry of Railways has decided to reactivate the “UTS ON MOBILE” app in order to decongest ticket booking counters and to maintain strict compliance of social distancing on railway stations.
“To decongest ticket booking counters and to ensure smooth compliance of social distancing norms, facility to book unreserved tickets through ‘UTS ON MOBILE’ app is being reactivated by Indian Railways,” read a release by the Ministry of Railways.
“In addition to UTS ON MOBILE app facility available on suburban sections, this facility may also be reintroduced on non-suburban sections of zonal Railways. Zonal Railways have been instructed that whenever unreserved train services are introduced on any zonal Railway, the zonal Railway concerned may accordingly enable the for issuing unreserved tickets,” it said. (ANI)

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NIA files chargesheet against 4 Tritiya Prastuti Committee members

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Ranchi (Jharkhand) [India], February 25 (ANI): The National Investigative Agency (NIA) filed a second supplementary charge sheet before the special court here on Thursday against four members of Tritiya Prastuti Committee (TPC) including its Zonal Commander, for pertaining to the recovery of cash and arms and ammunitions.
In a statement, the NIA, said that the charge-sheet against the group members of TPC, a Jharkhand-based terrorist group, namely, Vikas Ganjhu, Avinash, Dashrath Ganjhu, Varun Ji, pertaining to the recovery of Rs 5 lakhs cash along with arms and ammunitions from Shyam Bhokta, a TPC operative.
The case was initially registered at Panki, Police Station, on November 23, 2017.
Tritiya Prastuti Committee is a break-away terrorist group of the Communist Party of India (Maoist), and an unlawful organisation proscribed by Jharkhand under the Criminal Law Amendment Act, 1908.
TPC is involved in extortion and levy collection from the businessmen, industrialists, contractors involved in the government developmental projects in several districts of Jharkhand and Bihar, NIA said.
The absconding accused were remanded on September 2, 2020, and an investigation was established in which the arrested people were actively involved in extortion and levy collection for further strengthening TPC and to carry out various terrorist activities.
Earlier, NIA had filed the first supplementary charge sheet on July 23, 2017, against eight accused people, namely, Shyam Bhokta, Uchit Mahto, Premsagar Mahto, Amit Singh, Akraman Ji, Laxman Ganjhu, Kohram Ji, Mukesh Ganjhu, Nageswar Ganjhu, and Tarun Ji in this case. (ANI)

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Crime branch busts prostitution racket in Goa’s Calangute, 3 women rescued, 2 arrested 45

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Calangute (Goa) [India], February 25 (ANI): As many as three women were rescued on Wednesday night after the Goa crime branch busted an on-going prostitution racket. Two accused have been arrested in the case so far.
According to police, the crime branch team led by police inspector Narayan Chimulkar conducted raid at Royal Village Hotel, situated at Goa’s Calangute.
“The two accused have been identified as Dipak Sarkar and Ranjita D’Costa. Both the accused are residents of West Bengal,” the police said.
“Three women were rescued and have been sent to protective homes,” he added.
Further investigation into the matter is underway. (ANI)

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45-yr-old man sets aside rooms in his house for protecting birds in Bihar village

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By Surya Pratap Singh
Gaya (Bihar) [India], February 25 (ANI): At a time when a large number of birds are perishing due to lack of food, water and shelter, a 45-year-old man at Niskha village in Gaya, Bihar, has set aside several rooms of his house to provide a habitat for birds, especially sparrows.
This bird lover is Tanzilur Rahman Khan, a resident of Niskha village. He said he is thinking of making more rooms in the same way so that birds could have a habitat. According to Tanzilur, after watching the National Geographic Channel, the idea of conserving and protecting came to his mind. “It is said that the air of the sparrow’s wing protects from 38 kinds of diseases,” said Tanzilur.
Meanwhile, his elder brother Tousufur Rahman believes that at the pace at which the mobile tower is being built in the city, the birds are being harmed.
“My younger brother looks after them. We all try to keep these birds safe,” he said.
Conservation of birds matters in terms of keeping the environment balanced. Many species of birds are becoming extinct. The sparrow is also disappearing from courtyards. Tanzilur has taken an initiative to conserve birds, especially sparrows. (ANI)

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