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Mumbai Building Collapse: Five senior municipal officials to be suspended

Five senior officials of the Bhiwandi Nizampur Municipal Corporation have been placed under suspension as part of the investigation into the collapse of a building there in November.The collapse of the three-storeyed building, which occurred on November 24, had claimed four lives and left nine persons injured.The order suspending these officials for dereliction of duty was issued by municipal commissioner Dr Yogesh Mhase on December 8, said officials.The officials placed under suspension are Subhash Zalke, Vinod Mate, Sachin Naik, Vinod Bhoir and Ramakant Mhatre.The order further added that the officials were being suspended so that a departmental enquiry could be carried out against them.Also readMaharashtra: 1 dead, at least 10 feared trapped after building collapses in BhiwandiThe probe by the corporation also revealed that the the officials had violated the provisions of the Maharashtra Civil Services rules.The civic chief’s order stated that the building, owned by one Tahir Rafique Ahmed Ansari, had come up between 2009 and 2013 as shown by satellite images as well as power connection records.Also read3 killed in Bhiwandi building collapseThe building collapse killed Ruksar Yakub Khan, 18, Asfaque Ahmed Khan, 40, Jaibunissa Rafique Ansari, 61 and Parvin Khan, 35.

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3 killed in Bhiwandi building collapse

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>An illegal building collapsed in Bhiwandi on Friday morning, killing at least three people and leading to severe injuries to more than seven. One woman is feared to be trapped inside the debris. The Bhiwandi Nizampura Municipal Corporation (BNMC) evacuated the neighbouring buildings after the structure collapsed on it. The fire brigade department and National Disaster Rescue Force (NDRF) is conducting the search operation under the debris.The seven-year-old structure was built inside the bylanes near Noori Masjib at Bhiwandi. The structure was allegedly built by Tahir Bijnor,49 who was arrested by the Bhiwandi City police after the building collapsed. Twelve people were inside the building in which the ground floor was given on rent to run shops.The first floor was occupied by a family from which one person died in the incident while another occupant of the first floor is missing. The second floor was occupied by the owner and his family members from which mother of the builder died in the building collapse, the third floor was occupied by the family of an electrician, Mohammed Ayaz. While the terrace was occupied by makeshift tents belonging to labourers.According to police, Ruksar Khan, 18, died after the debris fell on her when she was passing by the building in the morning at around 8.45am. Ashfaq Khan, 38, died on the first floor while his wife Parveen Bano Khan is still feared trapped inside the debris. Jaibrunissa Ansari, 61, mother of Tahir, developer of the building too have died in the collapse.Bijender Dahiya, second-in-command, NDRF, said, “We have pressed two teams for search, rescue and relief operation and have 50 personnel working to clear the debris. A dog squad too has been deployed for the rescue operation.””Rescue operation was tough due to small lanes which obstructed the movement of the rescue vehicles. But we have managed to bring out people from the debris. Rescue operation is undergoing smoothly.”, said Dahiya.DN Salvi, Chief Fire officer, BNMC fire brigade department said, “Our teams have pulled out three bodies so far. We are trying to locate one more person. The neighbhouring structure too has been affected due to the collapse and have asked the occupants to vacate it.”

Maharashtra: 1 dead, at least 10 feared trapped after building collapses in Bhiwandi

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>At least one person was killed and three others were injured after a ground plus three-storey structure collapsed in Bhiwandi.The incident took place in the Navi Basti area of the city, and 10 more people are feared trapped.The search and rescue operation is underway.The Bhiwandi Municipal Fire Brigade and National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) are pressed in to rescue people trapped.”The rescue operation is ongoing. We are clearing the debris with the help from the NDRF,” said DN Salvi, Chief of Fire Brigade department.

Cops spoil smugglers’ party, seize liquor worth Rs 1 crore

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In two separate incidents, alert cops seized two consignments of liquor which were reportedly being peddled to Gujarat ahead of the elections.The net worth of the consignments was pegged around Rs 1 crore. Three persons have been arrested. The first consignment was confiscated by Harmara police while the second was seized by Chomu police.“Keeping in mind the upcoming state Assembly elections in Gujarat, vigilance had been increased against liquor peddlers. A special team had also been formed which was tasked with checking various trucks passing through the Daulatpura checkpost area. On Sunday, we received a tip off about a truck passing through the area. Based on that, we seized a truck (HR 55 P 2838) and the driver was detained for questioning regarding the contents of the consignment. The driver tried to mislead the cops by saying that he was ferrying electronic items from Delhi to Bhiwandi. The officers on duty doubted his version and carried out a raid. the cops found 1,135 cartons of Haryana made Liquor. The truck driver Sube Singh Jangid (46) and helper Mahaveer Singh (55) were later arrested. The consignment worth was pegged at Rs 60 lakh,” said Ashok Gupta, DCP West.During questioning, the truck driver and helper confessed to making fake bills of the contents and peddling liquor under the garb of the same.Meanwhile, in a different incident the excise police conducted an action at Chomu town wherein 980 cartons of liquor worth Rs 40 lakh was confiscated from a truck. The truck driver was arrested who was also peddling the consignment based on fake bills.

Mixed reactions to currency ban

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Note-ban has not hit the practice of corruption at all. The level has gone back to what it was before the announcement. People have started taking bribes again in cash as the supply has increased to normal level. However, a generation of black money has been reduced, but no major impact can be seen.—Anil Agrawal, a Jaipur-based-businessmanIt brought some initial inconvenience which cannot be ignored, especially to daily wage earners but it must be admitted that the government has taken a bold and a necessary step to bring about a reform and it must be given time to have its effect. I think we should be ready to make some contributions as well.—Samhita Pincha, headmistress of a Kolkata schoolI don’t think it has helped in curbing corruption. Instead, it has promoted corruption. Actually, demonetization helped big corporates and bankers to accumulate wealth. People at the grass-root level are suffering. Plus, the order that all money should be deposited in the banks has hit the people in rural, deep rural, tribal and mountainous areas. They do not have easy access to banks. —Dr Ghulam Rasool, RTI activist in New DelhiNote-ban has definitely been a step towards a cashless economy and it will have its long term effect. But to bring down corruption, strong and fast legal steps against corrupt politicians and bureaucrats should be taken. If they get punishment such as lifetime ban from politics, only then corruption can come under control—Sushil Mohta, Director of South City Projects, KolkataBefore note-ban money was directly exchanged but now the format has changed. It has been replaced by gold, land and it has been quite rampant. It has severely impacted small businesses like ours. It is a complete failure. The government has to urgently take some corrective steps.—Sachin Katakdhond, Navi Mumbai-based entrepreneurCorruption is a major issue for the nation. The present government, by scrapping Rs 500 and 1,000 notes, did attempt to address the problem. We were hopeful that things will change, but it is disappointing that the practice still exists. It is not just the government employees, corruption is prevalent in the private sector as well. It is easy to blame others, but as it is said, charity begins from home. The fight needs to begin at an individual level.—Dhaval Jain, a resident of AhmedabadMonetary corruption is nothing but a by-product of monetary transactions and demonetization has virtually stopped all monetary transactions. Hence, all monetary corruption has ended effectively. Note-ban has also adversely affected the textile industry in the country.—Sayed Kashif, a resident of Bhiwandi, MumbaiI don’t think demonetization has hit corruption. It was a useless exercise. Our tourism sector was badly hit. I remember the tourists who were staying in Kashmir that time had faced so many problems. Ninety per cent tourism industry runs on cash. In the far-flung areas there are neither ATMs nor POP machines. —Adil Khan, a hotelier in Jammu and KashmirNote-ban had only caused hardship to the common man. In no way it has reduced corruption. Anyone visiting the government offices will know it for sure. To curb corruption all the state government must first of all pass the right to Services Act to hold officials accountable for the inaction and computerise all the services to ensure transparency. The government must take steps to implement the Lokpal Bill.—V Gopalakrishnan, an RTI activist from ChennaiThe only change that demonetization seems to have brought in terms of corruption is the fact that earlier old notes were used and now new notes are taken as bribes. For a common man, nothing has changed post demonetization and I do not think that it has hit corruption in any way, except for the initial few months when every one was scared as the government kept talking about rooting out corruption. Ask anyone, they are still paying bribes to get any work done.—Tejas Shah, resident of Kandivali, Mumbaidemonetization had its effect on corruption for a very short period. As per reports, most of the black money circulating in the market has reached the banks or foreign shores. There is no visible reduction in corruption in any sector.—Shahina Khan, Patna-based-educationistWe have still not recovered from it’s effect, the business has suffered heavy losses. I don’t think this was the way to end corruption, as those who are corrupt have found new means to make money.—Ankush Dewesar, a photographer in New DelhiThe impact might have been at the big businesses, but no change can be seen at the ground level. There was a problem of currency during the first month. However, those who were taking Rs 1,000 as bribe earlier, are now taking Rs 2,000. However, people are less interested in cash now. The parallel economy is slowly contracting.—Surendra Shah, Chartered Accountant, JaipurBlack money was converted into white by depositing it in banks. Corruption has not stopped. In fact, in areas like Dharavi, people are paying as high as Rs 50,000 to get a new ration card, all in the vain hope that this will make them eligible for housing under the state government’s Dharavi makeover project—Gorakh Avhad, activist, MumbaiNote-ban has hit our market badly. It has hardly had any impact on corruption. I can say corruption has increased rather than decreasing. Corruption is everywhere in Kashmir. There is no department or section where corruption has stopped. It seems as if corruption has become legal. —Bashir Ahmad Bashir, fruit dealer in J&KPeople who are assigned to do the work legitimately do not want to work and still charge money for that. Corruption still exists. Corruption is a problem of the human mind and cannot be dealt with machines only. Human mind has to be changed but the whole system from top to bottom is still dependent on money gained through corrupt means. demonetization has failed to meet any of its objectives, especially recovery of black money. —Dr Sucha Singh Gill, former director, Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development (CRRID), Chandigarh

Man kills wife, claims she drank poison

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Nizampura police, on exhuming the body of a 28-year-old woman, found that her husband allegedly killed her and then buried her corpse in a pit he dug himself.The accused, in order to prove his innocence, claimed that his wife had consumed poison and died.According to the police, Banya Korde, 28, a resident of Katai in Bhiwandi of Thane district, allegedly killed his wife, Laxmi, on Saturday night and later buried her corpse in a burial ground.Their neighbhour, Shobha Dabhale, 35, had heard Laxmi’s screams and had tried to help her.In her complaint to the police, Dabhale alleged that she saw Banya assaulting Laxmi brutally. When the neighbours enquired about Laxmi’s health, Banya claimed that his wife had consumed poison and died.”The locals gathered at his residence and grilled the accused after which he revealed that he had killed his wife. They later informed us about the incident and we took him in our custody. We asked the accused to identify the spot where the corpse was buried,” said a Nizampura police officer.”We sent the corpse for a post-mortem. The accused assaulted the woman brutally following which she succumbed to her injuries. We have arrested him under sections 302 (murder) and 201 (destroying evidence) of the Indian Penal Code,” said RE Yadav, Senior Police Inspector, Nizampura police station.

Defamation complaint against Rahul Gandhi, Sitaram Yechury over remarks on Gauri Lankesh murder

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> An RSS activist has filed a complaint in a magistrate court here against Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi and CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury for allegedly linking the organisation to the murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh.”I have filed a case of criminal defamation and the hearing is likely to take place on October 22,” lawyer Dhrituman Joshi, who filed the complaint, said. In the complaint filed on Friday, Joshi cited some purported remarks by Gandhi and Yechury and alleged that they had blamed the RSS for the murder. “Statements made by the accused and the respective political parties are in utmost sense defamatory and belittle the RSS in the eyes of common public. There was a definite move by the accused to tarnish the image of the RSS, without citing any proof,” Joshi alleged in his complaint.He said that being an RSS worker, he was humiliated and defamed before the common people. The complaint claimed that the comments, which are “defamatory and detrimental to the image of the RSS”, have been made without any proof or official statement by the investigating authorities. Joshi has also made the Congress, its president Sonia Gandhi and the CPI(M) as party to his complaint.Journalist Lankesh was killed on September 6 by unidentified assailants at her residence in Karnataka. Rahul Gandhi is already facing a defamation case in a court at Bhiwandi in Thane district over his alleged comment against the RSS regarding Mahatma Gandhi’s assassination.

‘Sena may approach EC over Mira-Bhayandar civic poll results’

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Claiming that the BJP used religion to seek votes in the Mira-Bhayander civic polls, a Shiv Sena leader today said his party could approach the Election Commission on the issue. “The BJP had circulated five-minute video clips of a Jain priest which helped the party win over the Jain and Gujarati community. We may approach the Election commission or the courts against the BJP. Our leaders will decide on this,” said Pratap Sarnaik, a Sena MLA from Thane. The BJP swept the election to Mira-Bhayandar Municipal Corporation today, winning 61 of 95 seats, trouncing its bickering ally Shiv Sena and the opposition Congress and NCP. Sarnaik said that going it alone helped his party. “While we were in alliance with the BJP, we had 15 seats (last time). Now we won 22. So going solo was a good decision. However, we expected more seats,” he said. In an apparent swipe at the Sena, Mumbai BJP president Ashish Shelar said the electorate rejected “dishonest” people. “People have put faith in our promise of transparent development,” he said. Congress leader Ashok Chavan said, “Power at any cost is the formula the BJP is following. All democratic norms are being tossed aside. It is breaking up parties, using money power. This is happening across the country.” Asked if the result could be a trailer of 2019 general elections, Chavan said the Congress had done well in Malegaon, Parbhani, Bhiwandi and Latur local elections, and will do well in Nanded polls too. Maharashtra NCP chief Sunil Tatkare accused the BJP of using “muscle power”. “There cannot be any excuse for our defeat. However, unfair means were used to win,” Tatkare said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Bangladeshi man jailed for illegal stay dies in hospital

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 55-year-old Bangladeshi national, who was arrested in 2016 and was to be deported after completion of his jail term last month, died at a hospital in Mumbai, a police official said today. Mohammad Noorbani Sirajulkhan, hailing from Noakhali district in Bangladesh, was arrested by the Bhiwandi police here in July last year for staying in India without a valid passport and visa, he said. A Thane court last year convicted him under relevant sections of The Foreigners Act-1946 and The Passports Act-1967 and sentenced him to one-year imprisonment along with a fine of Rs 1,000, the official said. During the jail term, Sirajulkhan suffered from paralysis and was admitted to J J Hospital in neighbouring Mumbai on July 21 this year, he said. His jail term ended on July 27, but he could not be moved out of the hospital for deportation as he developed further health complications, he said. Khan died in the J J hospital on August 16 and later the postmortem was done, the police official said. Subsequently, the J J Marg police station in Mumbai informed the Bhiwandi police about the man’s death. The Bhiwandi police registered a case of accidental death and were trying to contact the deceased’s family members, the official added.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Maharashtra: Four arrested for transporting buffalo for slaughter in Thane

Tue, 18 Jul 2017-01:00pm , Mumbai , PTI
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The police have arrested four persons under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act after they were found transporting a buffalo in a vehicle allegedly for slaughter on Tuesday.They were allegedly taking the buffalo to the nearby Bhiwandi township on Monday when they were nabbed at Kalyan city, the police said. The police seized the buffalo, the vehicle in which the animal was being transported, the tranquiliser and a rope, they said.They arrested four persons while one of the group escaped. The arrested men have been booked under IPC sections 379 (punishment for theft) and 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention), and relevant sections of The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and The Motor Vehicles Act, police said.

Shiv Sena not against Nagpur-Mumbai expressway: Minister

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Maharashtra PWD Minister Eknath Shinde of the Shiv Sena today his party leadership never opposed the Nagpur-Mumbai expressway project which is facing opposition in certain districts over land acquisition issues. Shinde’s comments comes in the wake of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray last month expressing his opposition to acquisition of agricultural and fertile land for the road corridor. Shinde was present at a function held on July 13 where farmers from Hingna tehsil of Nagpur district gave away their lands for the venture. At the event, six landholders signed sale deeds with the state government to mark the land acquisition process for the project, also called `samruddhi mahamarg’ (prosperity expressway). “The Shiv Sena leadership was never against the samruddhi mahamarg. We only wanted to protect farmer interest and hence I visited Nagpur for witnessing the signing of land sale deeds. It’s a development project and we will not oppose it if issues raised by land owners are addressed,” Shinde, the leader of the Shiv Sena in the assembly, said. Officially called the Nagpur Mumbai Super Communication Expressway (NMSCE), the project is estimated to cost Rs 46,000 crore and will pass through Nagpur, Buldhana, Amravati, Wardha, Washim, Thane, Aurangabad, Akola, Bhiwandi and Nashik districts. The project is facing opposition from farmers in some pockets along its 700km route, especially in Nashik district.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Green loss is highway project’s gain

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>While the proposed 701-km Mumbai-Nagpur Super Communication Expressway is expected to boost the state’s economy, the draft environmental impact assessment report (EIA) prepared by the executing agency, the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC), states that 5,309 trees will have to be felled for the construction of the Expressway on the 155-km stretch between Jalna district in Marathwada to Aurangabad.The number of trees expected to be felled does not even amount to half of the total proposed construction of the Expressway. The EIA report also states that 26.8 hectares of forest land will have to be diverted to make way for the Expressway’s construction.However, MSRDC said the afforestation effort will surpass the loss caused by deforestation. “For every tree axed, three tree will be planted in its place,” said an MSRDC official.The draft EIA report for the 155-km stretch between Jalna and Aurangabad, which has been accessed by DNA, also states, “The key negative, permanent and irreversible impact will occur along the proposed alignment. There will be a loss of forest land of about 26.8 hectares”.”There will also be a loss of 5,309 trees, of which 399 are in the forest area and 4,910 belong to the non-forest area.”Between Bhiwandi and Nagpur, 84 per cent of the required land for the Expressway construction is prime agricultural land, while 13 per cent is uncultivated land. The remaining 1.92 per cent is forest land.The report further states that the construction of the highway will also have an impact on water bodies as well as air quality and noise levels.Deterioration of air quality due to fugitive dust emission from construction activities like excavation, backfilling and concreting, the report reads.However, the report has also suggested mitigation measure for every negative impact on the environment. The draft EIA report prepared by MSRDC is a part of the detailed project report (DPR) of the Expressway. The EIA report reveals the impact of the project on environment and also suggests mitigatory measures that could be taken in order to have minimum impact on environment.A public hearing will be conducted by the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) before the draft is converted into a final report.The Rs 46,000-crore Expressway project is expected to reduce the travel time between Mumbai and Nagpur to 10 hours from the current 15-17 hours. Land acquisition for the project has been mired in controversy as farmers, along with opposition parties including ally Shiv Sena, have been opposing the acquisition of 20,000 hectares for the Expressway, a dream project of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.Paving the wayAround 5,309 trees will have to be felled for the stretch between Jalna and Aurangabad. Also, 6.8 hectares of forest land will be diverted.

Congress-Sena come together in Malegaon civic body

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Congress and Shiv Sena have decided to come together in Malegaon Municipal Corporation (MMC) in Nashik district. The Shiv Sena has also joined hands with Congress in Bhiwandi Municipal Corporation. Congress had won 28 seats out of 84 to emerge as the single largest party in Malegaon civic body. The second position was shared by NCP-Janta Dal (U) alliance by winning 26 seats. The efforts to stitch an alliance between Congress and NCP earlier failed as the local leaders had opposed it. AIMIM and BJP had won seven seats each in the MMC. Meanwhile, Congress candidate Rashid Shaikh today emerged victorious in the mayoral polls bagging 41 votes against NCP-BJP’s Nabi Ahmed Ahamdulla who secured only 34 votes. AIMIM corporators remained absent for voting during the mayor elections as a result Congress could win the post though Congress-Shiv Sena alliance did not have a clear majority. For deputy mayor’s election, seven corporators of BJP remained absent along with AIMIM paving way for Shiv Sena’s Sakharakh Ghodake to become the deputy mayor. The elections for the Malegaon civic body were held last month along with Panvel and Bhiwandi.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

‘Monsoon to hit Bihar on Jun 14, to be delayed in Odisha by

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Several parts of the country received pre-monsoon rains today, even as Met offices predicted the onset of Southwest Monsoon in Bihar from June 14, while a delay of two-three days in Odisha. In the national capital, the maximum temperature hovered above 40 degrees Celsius, normal for the season, while the minimum was 27.4, a notch below the average. The humidity level oscillated between 77 and 41 per cent. The MeT office has forecast an overcast conditions with the possibility of thundershowers for tomorrow. Maximum temperatures in parts of Punjab and Haryana stayed below normal levels as the MeT Department predicted rainfall at isolated places of the two states for tomorrow. Chandigarh registered its maximum at 36.6 degrees Celsius, three notches below normal, while Ambala’s maximum settled at 39 degrees Celsius. Meanwhile, the meteorological department’s Patna centre forecast the onset of Southwest Monsoon in Bihar from June 14. The weathermen said Monsoon would be arriving in Bihar by its normal date i.e. June 10-15 and hit parts of Seemanchal area first. As per an IMD bulletin, Gaya was the hottest place in the state at 39.1 degrees Celsius followed by Bhagalpur at 37.7 and Patna at 37.0. Light to moderate rainfall occurred in some places in northern and eastern parts of Bihar, with Bhagalpur recording traces of rain while Purnea had 1.6 mm of rainfall in the past 24 hours. Odisha, where sunstroke has claimed 17 lives this summer, experienced a relief from the scorching heat for the second straight day today, due to rainfall. The mercury remained below the 40-degree mark across the state during the day barring at two places– Balangir and Titlagarh– in western Odisha. While heavy rainfall is likely to pound several areas of Odisha tomorrow, under the impact of a low pressure over the Bay of Bengal, the arrival of the Monsoon is likely to be delayed by two to three days due to current low rainfall elsewhere in the country, the IMD centre in the state said. Meanwhile, a portion of a building, housing a power-loom unit in Bhiwandi, came down early this morning following heavy downpour in the district. No casualty was reported in the incident and local police and firemen were rushed to the spot. Pre-monsoon rains were witnessed Rajasthan also, where several places received light to moderate rainfall with Sanchor in Jalore receiving a maximum of 7 cm precipitation till this morning since yesterday. Desuri in Pali and Sallopat in Banswara recorded 5 cm and 4 cm rains respectively while other areas recorded below-4 cm rains during this period. Meanwhile, in the northern India, the mountainous belts of the Bhaderwah valley, popularly known as “Mini Kashmir”, experienced a snowfall and hailstorm brining down the temperature and triggering a “cold wave situation”.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Portion of building collapses in Bhiwandi due to heavy rains

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A portion of a building housing a powerloom unit in Bhiwandi here crashed early this morning following heavy downpour in the district, police said. No casualties were reported in the incident, they said. API Sopan H Vishwas of Bhiwandi taluka police station told(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

BJP wins Panvel while Congress wins Bhiwandi, Malegaon in civic polls

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bharatiya Janata Party’s lotus bloomed in Panvel as the party in a pre-poll alliance with Republican Party of India (Athavale) won 51 seats in the newly formed 78-member Panvel Municipal Corporation. However, it failed to continue its victory march in the elections held to the Bhiwandi and Malegaon civic bodies where the Congress party emerged as the single largest party.The polling for these three civic bodies took place on Wednesday. The elections to these three bodies took place against the backdrop of BJP’s sterling performance in the recently held polls to the 13 municipal corporations, 25 zilla parishads and 210 municipal council and nagar panchayats in the state.As far as Bhiwandi and Malegaon are concerned, the Congress has regained lost ground. In the 84-member Malegaon civic body, the Congress emerged as the single largest party by winning 28 seats followed by NCP-Janata Dal alliance with 26 seats, and the Shiv Sena with 13 seats. Ironically, the BJP came fourth by winning nine seats while MIM won seven seats and one independent was victorious. All these parties had fought elections independently.In the 90-member Bhiwandi civic body, the faction-ridden Congress party has emerged as the single largest party by winning 47 seats. Bhiwandi city Congress chief Shoab Guddu told DNA, “The voters have rejected the BJP and they have wholeheartedly supported the Congress party for the speedy development of the powerloom town.”During the poll campaign, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had called upon the voters to vote for BJP to get a majority assuring the government’s assistance in its overall development.

Bhiwandi tehsildar transferred on poll-eve; Cong cries foul

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Maharashtra government has transferred Bhiwandi tehsildar Vaishali Lambhate despite the model code of conduct being in force for the election to its municipal corporation. In an order issued by the Konkan Divisional Commissioner’s office late last night, Lambhate was transfered as Bhiwandi tehsildar and replaced by Shashikant Gaikwad. Elections to the Bhiwandi Municipal Corporation, in adjoining Thane district, were held today. Taking a strong objection to the transfer, the Congress approached the State Election Commission (SEC) and sought a probe into the issue. The Opposition party said when the model code of conduct is in force only the Election Commission, and not the relevant state government, has powers to transfer officials. “Transferring a government official on the day of elections is a very serious issue. It shows the (BJP-led) government is ready to go to any length to win elections. The tehsildar’s transfer orders were issued at 11.30pm, right in the middle of the night,” Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant told reporters here. “The model code of conduct is in place at the moment and hence transfer of officials is prohibited by the Election Commission. Only the EC has the right to transfer officials, not the government,” the Congress leader said. “We have written to J S Saharia (State Election Commissioner) and requested for action in the matter at the earliest. The transfer was effected to favour local BJP leaders,” Sawant claimed.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

State government holds back RR rate hike for open lands

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The state government has stayed the hike in ready reckoner (RR) rates for open land in the municipal corporations and councils in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) to enable construction of affordable housing projects.Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis told the state legislative assembly on Monday that the stay had been given on hike in RR rates for land in Mumbai. “The municipal corporation levies charges based on RR rates,” he said, adding that this affected affordable housing projects with the fees having a cascading effect of around 90 per cent.”To prevent this cascading effect, we have imposed a stay for one month,” said Fadnavis.A senior revenue department official said the stay imposed on May 19 will be in force in nine municipal corporations (Mumbai, Thane, Kalyan-Dombivali, Ulhasnagar, Mira Bhayander, Bhiwandi Nizampur, Vasai Virar, Panvel and Navi Mumbai) and eight municipal councils in the MMR. These eight councils include Kulgaon-Badlapur, Ambernath, Karjat, Alibag, Pen, Uran, Matheran and Khopoli.The old RR rates for 2016-17 will apply for transactions on open lands in these areas as against the new RR rates which came into force on April 1. The RR rates for open lands had been hiked by an average of around 5-7 per cent for 2017-18.”This stay will only cover open lands and not the RR rates for flats, commercial property and industries,” the official said, adding that the department of registration and stamps will come out with fresh rates within a month.The official said that the decision had come after representations by stakeholders like developers and construction industry bodies. “Municipal corporations levy charges like premium on fungible FSI based on the prevailing RR rates,” he explained, adding that however, there was little open land available for construction and development in cities like Mumbai and Thane….and analysisThough sops have been granted by governments to the construction industry in the past, these have not translated into affordable housing. Authorities need to ensure that middle, lower middle class get adequate housing in MMR.

Anticipatory bail for Shilpa Shetty, Raj Kundra in cheating

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The district court in Thane today granted anticipatory bail to actress Shilpa Shetty, her businessman husband Raj Kundra and three others in a cheating case filed by a textile firm owner. The court had earlier granted the accused interim protection from arrest. Additional Sessions Judge Sangeeta Khalipe said in her order that in the event of arrest, the accused be released on personal bond or surety of Rs 1 lakh each. Ravi Bhalotia, owner of Bhalotia Exports of Bhiwandi, had lodged an FIR with the Kongaon police last month, stating that he had supplied bedsheets to Best Deal TV (BDTV), a company in which Kundra and Shetty are directors. The complainant alleged that BDTV, an e-commerce and teleshopping platform, sold the bedsheets but did not pay him the proceeds of Rs 24 lakh. Defence lawyer Aniket Nikam told the court that the accused had no intention to cheat, adding that BDTV had already paid Rs 1 crore to the complainant and only Rs 24 lakh were due. He also claimed that the complainant owed the accused Rs 25 lakh by way of compensation for a delayed delivery. As regards Bhalotia’s allegation that Kundra yesterday threatened him inside the courtroom that he would “recover Rs 100 crore” from him, Nikam said it was not a threat. Kundra had filed a suit against the complainant and only asked the latter to “keep Rs 100 crore ready”, he told the court. The defence lawyer also said the accused were ready to tender an apology over the issue. Public Prosecutor Vinit Kulkarni opposed the anticipatory bail applications of the accused. Referring to yesterday’s incident, he said the court should take a serious view of Kundra’s behaviour.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Election a democratic process, can’t be interfered with: SC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court today rejected a plea alleging duplication in the voters’ list for the upcoming Bhiwandi municipal polls in Maharashtra, saying election is a democratic process which cannot be interfered with. The apex court made the observation while hearing a plea challenging the Bombay High Court order dismissing a petition which alleged that there was duplication of 50,922 names in the voters’ list prepared for the Bhiwandi civic polls, which is scheduled on May 24. “The election process cannot be interfered with, otherwise it could create a havoc in the election. In almost every voters’ list, you may find this. If the court will stay election on these reasons, there will be no elections in India. It is a democratic process. We are not going to hear it,” a vacation bench of Justices Arun Mishra and Navin Sinha said. The plea before the apex court had alleged that out of the total 4,79,369 voters, 50,922 names have been repeated in the same ward or different wards. Besides this, there were thousands of voters whose addresses were not mentioned in the list and it was not possible to identify whether these voters were from the same ward or different wards, it said. The petitioner, a voter in the civic election there, said he had approached the state election commission on the issue and the poll panel had accepted that there were defects in the voters’ list. It said that municipal commissioner had also suspended some employees of the civic body for making serious mistakes while preparing the voters’ list without following the instructions of the state election commission. The plea said the dates for election was declared by the poll panel when the petitioner had moved the high court. The plea had said that since the whole process of preparation of voters’ list was defective, illegal and distorted, the whole electoral process could not be free and fair.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

MACT awards Rs 5.65 L compensation to girl injured in mishap

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Motor Accident Claims Tribunal (MACT) has awarded a compensation of Rs 5.65 lakh to a girl who was injured in a road accident in 2008. MACT member and district Judge R N Bawankar in his recent order directed the two opponents – truck owner Satvindersingh Mohindersingh Multani of Nagpur and the National Insurance Company – to make the payment jointly and severally along with the interest at 7 per cent per annum from August 2008. The claimant Darshika Sandeep Patil stated that on March 23, 2008 when she was going to a medical store in Bhiwandi, a truck hit her after which she suffered injuries on her right foot. The girl was 4 years old at the time of the accident. Patil was taken to a local hospital and then operated at a Mumbai hospital, the MACT was informed. She lodged a claim for Rs 2 lakh on the two respondents. The matter was decided ex-parte against the truck owner as he was not present. The insurance company contested the claim, but it was turned down. “On the basis of investigation, it is clear that the accident took place due to the negligence on the part of the driver of the offending vehicle,” the judge said in his order while awarding the compensation.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

FIR against Shilpa Shetty, Kundra in Rs 24-lakh cheating case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Maharashtra police today lodged a criminal case against Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty and her husband Raj Kundra in a Thane police station for allegedly duping a textile firm owner of Rs 24 lakhs. “FIR has been registered in Bhiwandi police station against Shetty and Kundra under sections 406 (criminal breach of trust) and 420 (cheating) of IPC,” Deputy Commissioner of Police Manoj Patil told(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Defamation case against Rahul: charges to be framed in July

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A magisterial court here today decided to frame charges against Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi in a defamation case filed against him by an RSS worker on July 28. The framing of charges by a court in a case paves the way for start of the trial of those accused in that case. Rahul did not appear in the court today and his lawyer filed an application for exemption for him from the appearance. The Congress leader was busy with political assignments, the lawyer said. Granting Rahul exemption from appearance for today’s hearing, the court posted the case for framing of charges on July 28. Local RSS worker Rajesh Kunte has filed the defamation case against Congress vice president over the latter’s speech in Bhiwandi on March 6, 2014 in the run-up to Lok Sabha polls. During the rally, Rahul had allegedly said that “The RSS people killed (Mahatma) Gandhi.” The court had granted bail to Rahul in the case last November. Rahul had said earlier that he won’t apologise for his statement, as demanded by the complainant.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Voting hours extended in 3 cities in Maha in view of heat wave

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After the IMD issued a warning of heat wave in Marathwada and Vidarbha regions of Maharashtra for the next few days, the State Election Commission today announced extension of voting hours during elections to Parbhani, Latur and Chandrapur municipal corporations. The polling for these three local bodies will take place on April 19. Instead of the usual 5.30 pm deadline, the voting will end at 6.30 pm, an official release said here. There will be no change in voting hours in elections to municipal corporations of Mira Bhayandar, Bhiwandi and Panvel. The counting will take place on April 21.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Govt announces 30% subsidy for upgradation of powerloom sector

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Union Textile Minister Smriti Irani today announced that the government has increased subsidy by 30 per cent for upgradation of powerloom sector and for the benefit of small weavers. Irani launched PowerTex India, a comprehensive power- loom development scheme today in Bhiwandi district of Maharashtra. On the occasion, Irani said, Bhiwandi will be known for resurgence in powerloom sector. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has directed us to start the scheme before March end so that people get the benefit from April, she said. Textile Minister said the PowerTex India scheme will benefit the small powerloom weaver’s to survive. For upgradation of powerloom sector government has increased subsidy by 30 per cent. The yarn bank issue has also been addressed and an assistance to the tune of Rs 2 crore will be given for the yarn bank created by 11 weavers. A common facility centre will be started under this scheme. Under Mudra Yojana the government would give a soft loan. With the help of Small Industries Development Bank of India (Sidbi) powerloom company can expand their business. Powerlooms using solar power would be granted 50 per cent subsidy, the Minister said. On the occasion Irani and Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis launched PowerTex India helpline for any assistance in this regard. PowerTex India van was also flagged off for publicity of PowerTex scheme across the country. They interacted with office bearers of powerloom sector in remote locations like Malegaon, Ichalkaranji, Kolhapur in Maharashtra, Surat in Gujarat, Bhagalpur in Bihar, Erode in Tamilnadu, Bengaluru in Karnataka, Varansi in Uttar Pradesh and others through videolink as PowerTex India scheme launched nationwide. This is the biggest scheme ever launched in power- loom sector in the country, Fadnavis said and hoped that powerloom centres in Maharashtra would be benefited. As Maharashtra is an important powerloom cluster the Central government has chosen Bhiwandi to launch this scheme. The state government has increased the subsidy for power to be be supplied for the sector in the Budget in last couple of years. Fadnavis also assured about giving subsidy in solar power for this sector.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Fadnavis announces extension of Metro to Mira-Bhayandar

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Ahead of civic polls, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis today announced extension of Metro to the neighbouring Mira Bhayandar area. The announcement is significant as elections to Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation would be held in May. Bhiwandi-Nizampur Municipal Corporation in neighbouring Thane district, which is also going to polls in May, is already a part of the planned Metro network. “As per the earlier announcements, Metro phase 2 and Metro phase 7 had the last stop in Dahisar. Now, these Metros will be extended upto Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation. The two major localities, Mira Road and Bhayandar, will get metro connectivity,” Fadnavis said in the Assembly today. “The current route of Metro-2 is from Colaba to SEEPZ and it will be extended upto the airport, covering D N Nagar, Dahisar and Andheri areas,” the CM said. “Colaba-Bandra-Seepz Metro is underground route, with cost of Rs 23,136 crore. The Japanese company, Jaica, has agreed to give a loan at 0.5 per cent interest rate. The work would be completed in 2020,” Fadnavis said. The total length of the Andheri East-Dahisar East Metro line is 16.5 km, and it will have 16 stations, which will cost the MMRDA, the state planning agency, Rs 6,208 crore. The entire Metro network in the Mumbai region will cover a distance of 172 km, and the state plans to extend it up to 200 km later, Fadnavis said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Fire in godown of tyre manufacturing unit; none injured

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A fire broke out at a tyre factory godown in Vadpe village of Bhiwandi here in the early hours of today, police said. No one was injured in the incident, they said. According to Thane Rural Police, the blaze broke out at 5 AM in the godown of the manufacturing unit and soon villagers and workers alerted local fire brigade centres. Two fire engines each from Thane and Bhiwandi fire brigade and one from Kalyan were rushed to the spot to contain the blaze, the official said. The fire was put off at around 3 PM, while cooling operation was still on, said the official. The reason behind the blaze was yet to be ascertained, police added.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Octroi evasion of Rs 58 lakh on high-end cars unearthed

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The police have unearthed alleged octroi evasion to the tune of Rs 58 lakh on high-end cars in Thane district, a crime branch official said today. According to the police, the scam allegedly involved buyers of high-end cars, RTO agents and management of automobile showrooms who register the foreign-make SUVs and other high-end cars using fraudulent residential address in Bhiwandi. “Nine cases were registered in Thane Nagar police station against more than 50 people in this regard last evening under various sections of the IPC,” said the Crime Branch (Thane unit) Senior Police Inspector Devidas Gevare. The police had in October 2015 booked secretary of controversial self-styled godwoman Radhe Maa for allegedly evading the tax on an imported car by giving a false address of Kongaon village in Bhiwandi, as the entry tax in rural areas is lesser than in urban areas. The vehicles involved in the racket are Range Rover, BMW, Audi, Mercedez Benz etc., the police officer said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

MCOCA slapped against accused in Manoj Mhatre murder case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Police have invoked charges under the stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) against the 19 accused allegedly involved in the murder of a Congress leader in Bhiwandi. “The accused were already charged under the provisions of the IPC and the Arms Act for the murder of Congress leader Manoj Mhatre and now we have added provisions of MCOCA,” Thane Additional CP (Crime) Manoj Ranade confirmed today. “The alleged accused indulged in organised crime and let loose a reign of terror in the locality for political and personal gains and this has been revealed during the probe,” the order by Thane police stated. DCP Crime Parag Manere said of the 19 accused allegedly involved in the crime, seven have been arrested and hunt is on for the remaining suspects. Congress leader of the house in Bhiwandi-Nizampur civic body Manoj Mhatre was shot dead on February 14 over political rivalry.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

Man gets life imprisonment for abducting powerloom workers

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 28-year-old history sheeter from Bhiwandi, who was found guilty on charges of kidnapping three powerloom workers from the town in 2013 for a ransom, was today convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment by a court here. Thane District Judge A S Bhaisare awarded the punishment to Javed Akhtar Basiulla Ansari after finding him guilty under section 364(A) (kidnapping for ransom) of IPC and also imposed a fined of Rs 1,000 on him. He was also found guilty of charges punishable under section 386 (extortion by putting a person in fear of death or grievous hurt) of IPC and awarded another five years RI and a fine of Rs 500. Both the sentences will run concurrently, the court said. Prosecutor Buleshwar Hinge had told the court that the man had on November 20, 2013, along with a minor, abducted Ramesh Dayali Mahato Dangi, Pankaj Govind Dangi and Vikas Sitaram Dangi, all in the age group of 20-25 years. They were taken to hotel Sagar Plaza in Shantinagar at Naigaon Road and held captive there at gun point after threats to kill them if a ransom of Rs 15,000 was not paid. The police based on a complaint by one of the relatives of the victims raided the place and rescued them, the court was told. In his order, the judge noted that no leniency can be showed for Ansari as he also received Rs 4,000 from victims through one Uday Dangi. Ordering life imprisonment for the man, the judge said, “The victims were labourers working in powerlooms. They were kidnapped on the point of revolver for ransom. Offence is very serious and proved against the accused beyond all reasonable doubts. “Kidnapping a person for ransom is cancer in the society. It needs to be cured and therefore, the accused involved in such crimes, cannot be shown leniency. In the present matter, no person was killed after kidnapping. Therefore, the case is not made out for capital punishment. As such, life imprisonment would meet the ends of justice,” the judge added.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

(Repeating after dropping words in para two)

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A magistrate court here today adjourned the hearing in the RSS defamation case involving Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi till March 3 for recording of his plea. “The date granted for recording of his (Rahul’s) plea is March 3,” said Magistrate Tushar Vaze, adjourning the case. The case against Rahul was filed by a local RSS functionary Rajesh Kunte over the former’s speech in Bhiwandi on March 6, 2014 in the run up to Lok Sabha polls. During the rally, Rahul had allegedly claimed, “The RSS people had killed Gandhi.” Prior to the adjournment, Rahul’s lawyers Ashok Mundergi and Narayan Iyer told the court that they have not received the copy of the entire newspaper (which published the news item on the Congress leader) but only the cuttings. Mundergi told the court that he will have to go through the entire documents and he will argue if needed, before the plea is recorded. He then, along with Iyer, moved an adjournment application. However, Nandu Phadke, advocate of the complainant in the case, urged the court that Rahul’s plea may be recorded today but his request was turned down. Rahul arrived in the court here at around 12.30 PM amid tight security accompanied by senior Congress leaders Ashok Chavan and Sanjay Nirupam, besides party supporters. As the magistrate was dictating some order in another case, Rahul was made to wait till 1.30 PM before his case was called out. He was seen exchanging pleasantries and speaking with Kunte. Later, in a brief interaction with waiting mediapersons outside the court, Rahul said, “My fight is against the ideology which killed Gandhiji. I remember Gandhiji. My fight is against the ideology which removed his poster from Khadi (KVIC) posters. “Gandhiji is in the heart of every Indian. He was killed but his thought can’t be erased,” Rahul, who was heading for a rally in poll-bound state of Goa, said. At the last hearing in November, the Bhiwandi court had granted him bail in the case after former Union Minister Shivraj Patil stood as surety. When Mundargi had requested for a date and sought the court to exempt Rahul from personal appearance, owing to his political commitments, the complainant’s lawyer had urged that Rahul may be treated as an “ordinary citizen” and adjourned the hearing till today. On September 1 last year, Rahul had preferred to face the trial as an accused in the defamation case, submitting before the Supreme Court that he stood by “every word” of his statement. (More)(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

The Congress Vice President had expressed his readiness to

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>face the trial after the apex court refused to interfere with the proceedings pending against him before the trial court. He had then withdrawn the appeal filed by him against the Bombay High Court judgement refusing to quash the defamation case and summons issued to him by the trial court. The apex court also declined Rahul’s plea that he be exempted from personal appearance before the Bhiwandi court which had taken cognisance of the complaint of the RSS functionary by summoning him as an accused in the case.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)

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