Rival AIADMK factions submit new names, symbols to EC
A day after the Election Commission barred the rival AIADMK factions from using the party name and symbol in the RK Nagar bypoll, the two camps submitted new names and symbols to the poll panel to contest the election. According to party sources, the EC accepted the request of the Sasikala camp that it be allotted "hat" as its symbol. The faction will contest as AIADMK (Amma). The O Panneerselvam camp will use the 'electric pole' as its symbol and will be called AIADMK (Puratchithalaivi Amma). The poll panel had last night said that both the groups shall be known by such names as they may choose for their respective groups, showing, if they so desire, linkage with their parent party. The bypoll was necessitated following the demise of former Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa who was elected from RK Nagar. E Madhusudhanan of the OPS camp today filed his nomination at RK Nagar. TTV Dinakaran of the Sasikala faction and Maruthu Ganesh of DMK will also be contesting the bypoll.
MPs take umbrage over SC remarks on 'crorepati' MPs
Drawing the line between the roles of the executive and the judiciary, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said Parliament alone has the authority to approve how public money is to be spent and it alone can legislate on how much pension MPs can draw. "It is an unquestionably clear constitutional position that public money can be spent only after authorisation of Parliament. Therefore, Parliament only can authorise how public money can be spent. No other institution can exercise that power," he said. Jaitley's comments in Rajya Sabha came after opposition MPs raised the issue of the Supreme Court's reported comments that 80% of former law markers are 'crorepatis' (millionaires). Earlier, Naresh Agarwal (SP), through a point-of-order, raised the issue saying the image of the MPs is being sullied as if they are appropriating huge public monies as salaries and pension without working. He said some former MPs are living "a pauper's life", with the children of a former law maker in Uttar Pradesh working as labourers and artisan. The Supreme Court had on Tuesday reportedly said the pension and perks to MPs seemed 'prima facie' unreasonable and had sought responses from the Centre and the Election Commission of India on a plea seeking the scrapping of pension and other perks being given to Members of Parliament.
Bombay High Court directs protesting resident doctors in Maharashtra to resume duty immediately
Unfazed by the government's warning of suspension and cutting their pay, resident doctors across various hospitals in Maharashtra continued their strike for the fourth day today. Nearly 4,000 resident doctors have been striking since Monday, demanding enhanced security in the wake of a string of attacks on doctors by patients' relatives at government hospitals across the state. The protests have been hampering the services of Out-Patient Departments (OPDs) in various hospitals. Last night, a woman doctor of the civic-run Sion hospital here was allegedly beaten up by the relatives of a patient, which made the stand of the protesting medicos more aggressive. The civic-run KEM Hospital in Mumbai has started issuing suspension notices to the doctors who did not report to duty despite state Medical Education Minister Girish Mahajan asking them to resume work by last evening. Mahajan had warned the protesting resident doctors that they would lose six months' pay and face suspension if they did not resume work by 8 pm yesterday. On Thusrday, the Bombay High Court asked resident doctors to resume duty immediately and amicably resolve issues with Maharashtra government.
Kolkata Police forms SIT to probe cheating case against Alchemist group
The Kolkata Police has formed a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe into a case against Alchemist group, a company owned by Rajya Sabha MP KD Singh. Cases under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 420 (cheating), 406 (breach of trust), 409 (breach of trust by public servant, or by banker, merchant or agent) and 120 B (criminal conspiracy) have been started against Singh and two other directors Kumarjit Singh and Pawan Verma, a senior officer of Kolkata Police said. A case has also been initiated against three companies of the Alchemist group, acting on complaints by investors lodged against the group at the Bowbazar police station on March 16, he said. There are allegations against the group of cheating of over ₹2.53 crore, the officer said. Incidentally, Singh's name has also surfaced in the Narada sting operation case after Narada News CEO Mathew Samuel claimed that Singh had given him ₹80 lakh for the sting operation.
SC adjourns Babri demolition case hearing for two weeks
The Supreme Court today asked BJP leaders LK Advani, MM Joshi and other accused in the Babri Masjid demolition case to give their written submissions and adjourned the matter for two weeks. A bench comprising Justices PC Ghose and RF Nariman asked all the parties in the case to file their written arguments by April 6 and posted the matter for further hearing on April 7. At the start of the hearing, senior advocate KK Venugopal, appearing for the BJP leaders, sought permission from the court for appearing before another bench in a part-heard matter. The bench allowed Venugopal's plea but said that the parties should file their written submissions in the case before the next date of the hearing. Yesterday, Justice Ghose had adjourned the matter for today as Justice Nariman was not present. On March 6, the apex court had decided to examine the appeal against dropping of conspiracy charge against the accused including Advani, Joshi and Uma Bharti in the case related to demolition of Babri Masjid in Ayodhya in 1992. The top court had also came up with an option of ordering a joint trial of cases arising out of the two FIRs lodged in the wake of the demolition of the disputed structure.