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Chinkara case: SC issues notice to Salman Khan; agrees to hear Rajasthan govt’s plea

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court issued a notice to Salman Khan on Friday on Rajasthan government’s plea in the chinkara poaching case. The apex court agreed to hear the plea filed by the state government challenging Khan’s acquittal in the case.The Rajasthan government had filed appeal in the Supreme Court on October 19 against the acquittal of by the High Court in the two poaching cases.On July 25, Salman was acquitted by the High Court while setting aside the trial court’s conviction and sentence to five-year jail term for hunting and killing two endangered chinkara deer and one black buck in Rajasthan in 1998. Khan has spent time in a Jodhpur jail twice. Both animals are protected and killing them is a punishable offence.In the appeal, the state government said, “the high court has erroneously exercised its revisional powers to set aside concurrent findings of both the lower courts which convicted Salman.””That minor discrepancies in trial shall never dilute the entire prosecution case and the high court has failed to see the entire circumstances which have proved beyond doubt against the actor,”as per the appeal.It contended that Salman khan had ample opportunity to cross examine the eye witness Harish Dulani, the driver of Zypsy and he intentionally did not examine him.The court should have accepted the statement given by the witness against Salman. Salman Khan’s conviction was based on material evidence which the high court has turned down on hyper technical issues which is unsustainable, the state said seeking reversal of high court order. In the first case, Salman had faced trial for killing the animal at Bhawad on the outskirts of Jodhpur on September 26, 1998, and the other at Ghoda Farms on September 28, 1998 during shooting for the film Hum Saath Saath Hain.Salman Khan moved the Jodhpur bench of the High Court to challenge his conviction by a lower court and award of one and five-year terms in the two poaching cases. His appeal was allowed and he was let off in the case.

Rajasthan government moves Supreme Court against Salman Khan’s aquittal in Chinkara kiling cases

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Rajasthan government on Wednesday filed appeal in the Supreme Court against the acquittal of Bollywood actor Salman Khan by the High Court in two chinkara poaching cases.On July 25, Salman was acquitted by the High Court while setting aside the trial court’s conviction and sentence to five year jail term for killing two chinkaras in separate incidents 18 year ago.The appeal would come up for hearing after Diwali holidays.In the appeal, the state government said “the high court has erroneously exercised it’s revisional powers to set aside concurrent findings of both the lower courts which convicted Salman.””That minor discrepancies in trial shall never dilute the entire prosecution case and the high court has failed to see the entire circumstances which have proved beyond doubt against the actor,”as per the appeal.It contended that Salman khan had ample opportunity to cross examine the eye witness Harish Dulani, the driver of Zypsy and he intentionally did not examine him.The court should have accepted the statement given by the witness against Salman. Salman Khan’s conviction was based on material evidence which the high court has turned down on hyper technical issues which is unsustainable, the state said seeking reversal of high court order.In the first case, Salman had faced trial for killing the animal at Bhawad on the outskirts of Jodhpur on September 26, 1998, and the other at Ghoda Farms on September 28, 1998 during shooting for the film ‘Hum Saath Saath Hain.’Salman Khan moved the Jodhpur bench of the High Court to challenge his conviction by a lower court and award of one and five-year terms in the two poaching cases. His appeal was allowed and he was let of in the case.

Complaint against Kejriwal, Congress leaders over surgical strike remarks

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Former AAP leader Maruti Bhapkar on Wednesday filed a complaint seeking a sedition case against Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal as well as Congress leaders Sanjay Nirupam, P Chidambaram and Digvijaya Singh over their remarks about the surgical strikes by the Indian Army across the Line of Control.The complaint application, which was filed at the Pimpri police station, also sought registration of a criminal case Bollywood actors Salman Khan and Om Puri.As per the complaint, the Army’s surgical strikes were done with precision and it was made public by Army officials through a media briefing. It said, “remarks by Kejriwal, Nirupam, Singh and Chidambaram over the strikes somewhere support the stand of Pakistan”.Vivek Mugalikar, police inspector at Pimpri Police station said, “We have received the application from Bhapkar and we are seeking legal opinion from the lawyers and a decision of registering the case will be taken after hearing the opinion,” he said.

Om Puri should feel lucky that he is in India after taking freedom of speech to a whole new level

I watched Om Puri on a TV panel discussion with awe and admiration. Awe because never have I heard such gibberish in my life. Admiration because the man underscored the Indian madness over film stars. If he wasn’t a film actor, he would have been indicted for sedition with twenty times the evidence we flung at Kanhaiya Kumar, JNU Students’ Union leader.

Om Puri. News18

Om Puri. News18

Om Puri did not cross the LoC of common sense. He trampled it with contempt and derision for Indian soldiers and talked such utter nonsense that it was difficult to grasp at even a tendril of common sense.

There wasn’t even a hint of the threadbare ho hum stance of intellectual pretension like we see in Salman Khan and Karan Johar and their tribe…here is the Defence Minister of Pakistan saying he will fling nuclear bombs at you and a cricketer like Javed Miandad telling the world that every child in Pakistan will rise up against India and if we could just keep a dignified silence, that would be fine but no, we have to denigrate ourselves and babble on about our being nice guys and art being separate.

So is sport, Sport, and I do not see the Miandads playing by the rules.

But this is all small beer compared to the drivel spouted by Om Puri. It was so breathtakingly anti–Indian that only in democratic India could he be in a position to go home, have a drink, eat dinner and sleep peacefully without being accountable to the state.

Some years back, he acted as General Zia Ul Haq in a film called Charlie Wilson’s War. Clearly, he hasn’t stepped out of his role.

After this absurd display of hubris and conceit, I think it is time we told Bollywood and all its other ‘…woods’ to put a sock in it.

To an extent, their excesses and their pretensions to grand intellect are our fault. We put them on the pedestals, venerate them, come out into the heat of the night to pay obeisance, turn them into demi-gods, carry their photographs, want to touch them, make huge posters and cutouts and give them space to believe they are philosophers who eclipse Socrates and Plato.

No wonder then that they believe they can afford to be outrageous and still be loved.

Take this Om Puri guy. Great actor whose self-delusion borders on the ridiculous. He babbles on about the armed forces, repeats some nonsensical litany of turning the subcontinent into Palestine and Israel like he had discovered the cure to cancer and embarrasses himself beyond belief.

If Bollywood is truly the great free spirit and vat of grand thought it pretends to be, let’s have the Salman Khans and the Karan Johars come out into the open and tell us that Om Puri had egg on his face and made a laughing stock of himself while indicting the whole film industry.

Will they do it? I doubt that very much. We live in perilous times and our nation is under attack. Wake up and smell the coffee, bitter as it is.

We do not need opinion, we need solidarity.
We don’t need placid pacifism, we need alertness.
We don’t need to kneel, we need to walk tall.

And we also need the Om Puris of India to zip it.

Friendship not above state, country: MNS chief Raj Thackeray on Salman row

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Referring to his friendship with Bollywood superstar Salman Khan, MNS chief Raj Thackeray on Sunday said friendship was not above the state and country.”After Salman’s recent comments about Pakistani artistes, people felt that Raj Thackeray will not comment on the issue (as the two are friends). No one is a friend when it comes to state and nation,” he said addressing a rally here.Raj also advised Salman that the actor should have spoken with responsibility.On September 30, a row broke out over remarks by Bollywood superstar Salman Khan, director Anurag Kashyap and Shyam Benegal that boycotting Pakistani artistes in Bollywood is no solution to terrorism.Salman said artistes come to Bollywood with proper visa and work permit.The star’s comments came in the wake of Indian Motion Picture Producers Association’s resolution to ban Pakistani actors from the industry following the terror attack on an army camp in Uri.Raj had slammed Salman for supporting Pakistani artistes, saying he was only concerned about his movies doing well in that country.Meanwhile, Raj also said every issue is being raised with an eye on elections.”But our party is different from others. We don’t take up issues with eye on polls,” he claimed.

Shiv Sena taunts Salman Khan for his comments on Pakistan artistes

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Samajwadi Party leader Abu Azmi on Friday welcomed Bollywood actor Salman Khan’s remarks on Pakistani artistes, while there was subdued criticism from the Raj-Thackeray led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS). The Shiv Sena, however, taunted the actor and advised him to take lessons on national pride from his father Salim Khan.Salman on Friday said artistes from Pakistan were not terrorists and art and terrorism should not be mixed. Welcoming his stand, Azmi said, “Our fight is against Pakistan and we are proud of our soldiers for going into Pakistan-occupied territory and killing the terrorists. But, when we are talking about those who are here on valid visas for either work purpose or medical treatment, it is our duty to welcome them with open arms.””When we give these Pakistanis a good treatment, they will go back to their country and condemn the atrocities perpetrated by them on our soil. When Pakistanis say good things about our country, it will be that country which will be embarrassed on the global front,” he told reporters,Maharashtra Industries Minister and senior Sena leader Subhash Desai advised Salman to “take lessons” on national pride from his father and noted scriptwriter Salim Khan. “Pakistan is our enemy and has killed our jawans by crossing the Line of Control (LoC) at Uri. The Sena has always opposed cricketing ties with Pakistan,” he said.Desai said Sena believed that there should be no cultural ties between the two countries when people’s reaction was “strong” over the terror attacks “from Pakistan”.Meanwhile, MNS leader Shalini Thackeray said if Pakistani artistes do not condemn their country’s wrongdoings, Indian actors should also respect the sentiments of Indians. “Filmstars should understand the sentiments of the people under the current circumstances. People are very angry and actors like Salman Khan should respect them,” she said.”If Pakistani artistes do not condemn the wrongdoings of their country, why can our filmstars not respect the Indian sentiment. Bollywood is not bigger than the country,” Thackeray added.

dna Evening Must Reads: PM Modi reaches out to Pakistanis; India dominate New Zealand in first test match and more

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>1. BJP National Meet: PM Modi directly addresses Pakistanis, says Nawaz Sharif reads speeches written by terrorists​The two-day National Council meeting started on Saturday at Kozhikode amidst demands for tough action against Pakistan. The party sought to focus on the pro-poor agenda during the deliberations with BJP President Amit Shah asking its state governments to execute the schemes aimed at the welfare of the poor. Read more here.2. China assures Pakistan of support in case of ‘foreign aggression’Beijing’s support becomes significance in the light of heightened tension between India and Pakistan. China has vowed to steadfastly support Pakisan. Read more. 3. Cascade mall shooting: 5 dead, gunman still at largeThe death toll in US mall shooting incident has risen to five, while the gunman is still on the run. Police in northwest Washington state are conducting a manhunt for the gunman. His motive behind carrying out the shootout is not yet known. Read more.4. #INDvNZ: Jadeja, Ashwin spin out Kiwis while Vijay, Pujara strengthen India’s grip at the end of Day 3The spin duo of Ravindra Jadeja and R Ashwin exploited a turning track to the fullest to bundle out New Zealand for 262 as India took firm control of the first cricket Test by extending their overall lead to 215 in Kanpur on Saturday. Read more.5. Snapchat just released its first hardware product, Spectacles!Snapchat Chief Evan Spiegel announced that the company has been rebranded and renamed to Snap Inc. In addition, the company unveiled its first wearable product, Spectacles. Read more. 6. Watch: The latest promo of ‘Bigg Boss 10’ has Salman Khan in Indiana Jones avatarPopular Television reality show Bigg Boss is all set to return with its 10th season and host Salman Khan has left no stones unturned for its comeback. The latest promo shows him dressed as Indiana Jones! Watch the promo here.

dna Evening Must Reads: Jaishankar summons Pak HC Basit; Rail budget merger with General Budget; and more

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>1. Uri attack: Jaishankar summons Pak HC Basit; Parrikar says prefer to implement things than talkManohar Parrikar reacted strongly to the recent attack in Uri district and said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s statement about punishing those behind the deadly attack will not remain a mere statement. Meanwhile, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar summoned Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit over the Uri attacks. Read more. 2. End of 92-year-old practice; Cabinet approves merger of Rail Budget with General BudgetThe 92-year-old practice of presenting a separate Rail Budget will now come to an end from the next fiscal. The Cabinet has also decided to do away with the Plan/ Non-Plan expenditure classification in Budget 2017-18 and replace with ‘capital and receipt’. Read more.3. PM Modi fulfills his Independence day promise, hikes pension of freedom fighters by 20%The monthly pension of freedom fighters, including those who were incarcerated in Cellular jail in Andaman Islands or suffered outside British India, was hiked on Wednesday by around Rs 5,000 each. Read more.4. Nawaz Sharif consults Army chief ahead of UNGA address; may offer proposals to address Kashmir issuePrime Minister Nawaz Sharif and General Raheel Sharif had a telephonic conversation on Tuesday night and discussed the situation in Kashmir and tense relations with India. Read more.5. Connecting India: Cabinet clears Rs 1,250 cr subsidy for BSNL for rural phonesThe Cabinet on Wednesday cleared the long-pending compensation of Rs 1,250 crore for public sector telecom company BSNL to support rural landline connections installed before April 1, 2002. Read more. 6. Spotted: Salman Khan enjoying water sports in Manali!Bollywood superstar Salman Khan, who is currently busy with the second leg of shooting for his upcoming film Tubelight in Manali, was recently spotted indulging in some water adventure sports. Read more.

National Commission for Women to issue summons to Salman Khan over his rape remark

Guwahati: The National Commission for Women on Monday said that the body has taken Bollywood actor Salman Khan’s controversial rape remark “very seriously” and will issue summons to him soon.

“We had written a letter to him last week asking why he made such a remark but he has not replied so far,” NCW chairperson Lalitha Kumaramangalam said in Guwahati.

Salman Khan. GettyImages

Salman Khan. GettyImages

“We have taken his remarks very seriously and will issue summons to him immediately as he has failed to reply to the letter in which we had asked him to apologise within seven days,” she told reporters at the end of the day-long regional consultation on Draft National Policy for Women, 2016.

The NCW has also taken the Motihari rape case along with the recent alleged incidents of four rapes in Bihar “very seriously and will pursue it very aggressively”.

“The Motihari incident is a horrendous cover-up of justice by the police and we have sought an appointment with Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and will take up the issue with him,” Kumaramangalam said.

The matter will be also taken up with the NHRC as the recent four cases of rape in Bihar are serious violation of human rights with the role of the police being suspected.

“In these particular cases, the police is mysteriously losing files, FIRs are not being filed and there has been a breakdown in justice. In these four cases, it appears that there is a lack of political will,” she said.

Asked about online trolling, the NCW chairperson said online abuse was increasing alarmingly and there was a need to take action but most of those trolled registered no complaints.

“If I get a complaint, I will act aggressively but none wants to complain. Even senior journalists have been trolled but there has been no complaints,” she added.

The day-long consultation on Draft National Policy for Women, 2016 discussed various issues related to education and governnance and decision-making, violence against women, health including food security and nutrition, environment and climate change to create an effective framework of developing a national policy.

The consultation was organised by the Assam government and Assam State Commission for Women in collaboration with the NCW.

Rape remark: Why fans rallied around Salman Khan and why media is equally culpable

While the ‘rape remark’ controversy was raging on TV studios, #PaidMediaCan’tPullSalmanDown was trending high on Twitter for a considerable amount of time. It suggested that while media was seething in sanctimonious anger over Salman Khan’s regressive comment, legion of his fans were solidly behind Bhai, registering their protest through social media and vowing to make his upcoming Eid release ‘Sultan’ the sultan of all Bollywood movies.

This presented a curious chasm. While a Bollywood superstar was rightly being criticized for trivializing violence against women, millions of his followers were taking umbrage at the criticism. For them, it was almost a personal affront.

Before we address this dichotomy, let’s recall what the 51-year-old teenager actually said.

During an interview with Spotboye magazine, Salman made a ‘casual’ observation that the grueling training schedule for the movie made him feel like a ‘raped’ woman.

“While shooting, during those six hours, there’d be so much of lifting and thrusting on the ground involved. That was tough for me because if I was lifting, I’d have to lift the same 120-kilo guy 10 times for 10 different angles. And likewise, get thrown that many times on the ground… When I used to walk out of the ring, after the shoot, I used to feel like a raped woman. I couldn’t walk straight”.

Later in the interview, Salman even went on to say that he has left every vice, including cigarettes and coffee, except women. So this appeared to be a classic case of misogyny where a traumatic event with deep repercussions like rape was being compared to the physical exertions of a gym session. This is the first step towards ‘making light of’ and eventually establishing violence against women as a normative principle.

Now consider the way Salman’s legion of dedicated fans have reacted. Far from being enraged that their screen idol has regressively and in a cavalier manner sought to equate the deep mental and physical scar of rape with the exertions of training in a gymnasium, they have (mostly) perceived the entire controversy as ‘fake’.

The popular reaction can largely be divided into two parts.

According to some fans, their larger-than-life icon has been ‘unfairly targeted by the media’ for an entirely innocuous comment in search for easy TRPs. Bhai didn’t mean it, of course. In other words, Salman here is the ‘victim’.

In the eyes of the other, mostly male section, Salman’s popularity is sure to soar even higher than before because only he has the balls to say what everybody knows is the truth. Doesn’t a backbreaking session at the gym leave you feeling as if you have been raped?

Salman in a still from the upcoming film 'Sultan'. Screengrab from YouTubeSalman in a still from the upcoming film 'Sultan'. Screengrab from YouTube

Salman in a still from the upcoming film ‘Sultan’. Screengrab from YouTube

In other words, far from being the perpetrator of a depraved comment, Salman Khan is that alpha male who has been wronged and victimized by a media eager to cash in on a controversy. And fans are ready to show solidarity with their victimized hero by flooding the theatres when the movie is released.

And we would be utterly wrong to blame the fans for their perception. They didn’t descend from Mars. They are us, they might even be you.

In fact, by concluding that those who have to come to defend Salman are some sort of ‘criminals’ or ‘hypocrites’, the media is being part of the problem. It takes active part in propagating daily misogyny. It miserably fails to challenge the various ways in which patriarchy as a social system associates manhood and masculinity with dominance and control (consider the abundance of sexist TV commercials) because more often than not, men are the primary focus of attention in most cultural spaces.

And yet, the media takes a holier-than-thou stand when those internalized patriarchal mores are expressed in uncomfortable ways.

When Salman Khan made that blasé remark about ‘rape’, the 51-year-old superstar at the height of his fame was accurately describing the popular perception about the deprivation of women’s bodily sovereignty that usually leave lifelong scars.

In their seminal thesis Rape Trauma Syndrome, psychiatrist Ann Wolbert Burgess and sociologist Lynda Lytle Holmstrom, as far back in 1974, showed how the psychological trauma experienced by a rape includes disruptions to normal physical, emotional, cognitive, and interpersonal behavior. Collectively called RTS, these are a cluster of psychological and physical signs, symptoms and reactions common to most rape victims immediately following and for months or years after a rape.

So just instinctively blaming the people who are defending Salman won’t do. We should also challenge the innumerable ways in which male domination is pushed down our throats to such an extent that we have internalized it as the ‘normal’.

Women are a joke, girls are a joke, rape is a joke, the degradation of women is perhaps the most hilarious joke ever.

If rape —which signifies male control over the sexual and reproductive uses of women’s bodies as a central defining element of patriarchy — can be turned into a jocular remark by hero number one and if legions of his fans swear that it isn’t anything but ‘normal’ then it points to a deep rot in our psyche that we must address. Merely blaming and shaming them misses the point by a mile.

After Salman and Sachin, AR Rahman becomes Olympic Goodwill Ambassador

New Delhi: Oscar winning music composer AR Rahman on Thursday agreed to be the Goodwill Ambassador of the Indian Olympic contingent, joining cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar, ace shooter Abhinav Bindra and Bollywood star Salman Khan.

AR-Rahman_AFP

Tendulkar, Salman and Olympic gold medallist Bindra had earlier accepted the role offered by the Indian Olympic Association.

The IOA said that it has also received an official written confirmation from Rahman.

“It’s absolutely an honour and my pleasure to be a goodwill ambassador of the Indian contingent scheduled for August 2016,” Rahman said in a release issued by the IOA.

Welcoming Rahman on board, IOA Secretary General Rajeev Mehta said, “I would like to welcome AR Rahman on board as a goodwill ambassador of Indian contingent for Rio Olympics. It’s our privilege to have the Oscar winning living legend-music composer on board to spread awareness and promote the Olympic movement.

“As per our plan to reach out to maximum people in the country for Olympic Sports, we are happy that Mr. Rahman has come forward from the field of music to support our athletes and we already have Salman Khan from Bollywood, Abhinav Bindra from Olympic Sports and Sachin Tendulkar from Cricket. I am sure Mr. Rahman will inspire our sportspersons.”

There was a huge uproar after Salman was appointed Goodwill Ambassador ahead of other sporting luminaries. Former and current athletes were up in arms against Salman’s appointment and demanded to know why someone from the field of sports was not named by the federation.

The IOA immediately went into damage-control mode and requested Beijing Games gold medallist shooter Bindra and Tendulkar to be Goodwill Ambassadors.

Chinkara case: Court relief to Salman Khan on pellets issue

In a major relief to Bollywood star Salman Khan, the Rajasthan High Court on Wednesday observed that pellets recovered from his hotel room did not match with those recovered from the vehicle allegedly used by him in poaching of Chinkara.The pellets and the knife, which are the exhibits in a case of poaching in Kankani on October 1-2, 1998, were produced in the high court here for observation.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Justice Nirmal Jeet Kaur had a close look at the objects with regard to their link with the case during the hearing of a revision petition moved by Salman against a sentence of five years in the poaching case of a Chinkara on September 28-29, 1998 in Mathania. The court observed that the pellets recovered from the hotel rooms of Salman Khan and Saif Ali Khan were not only different from those said to have been recovered from the vehicle, but also of inferior quality.Similarly about the knife, which was allegedly used by Salman for slitting the throat and peeling off the skin of the poached Chinkara, the court observed that it was like a pocket knife. The judge said she wanted to have a look at the knife to see if it was big enough to be used by Khan for killing the animal.Defence counsel Mahesh Bora argued that all the pellets belonged to air guns and could not be fatal for any animal. “The pellets recovered from Salman’s room were double headed ones whereas those recovered from Saif’s room were of two types (steel and led) and both of these could not be used in any fire arm,” he argued.With this, the defence completed the arguments today in the hearing stretching one hour beyond the scheduled time of the court, wherein he pointed to a series of gaps and loopholes in the police investigation. The prosecution will now start arguments from May 10.

Chinkara case: Pellets from Salman’s room not a match with those found in vehicle

Jodhpur: In a major relief to Bollywood star Salman Khan, the Rajasthan High Court on Wednesday observed that pellets recovered from his hotel room did not match with those recovered from the vehicle allegedly used by him in poaching of Chinkara.

The court observed that the pellets recovered from the hotel rooms of Salman Khan and Saif Ali Khan were not only different from those said to have been recovered from the vehicle, but also of inferior quality. Reuters

The court observed that the pellets recovered from the hotel Salman Khan’s hotel room are different from those recovered from the vehicle, but also of inferior quality. Reuters

The pellets and the knife, which are the exhibits in a case of poaching in Kankani on October, 1998, were produced in the high court here for observation.

Justice Nirmal Jeet Kaur had a close look at the objects with regard to their link with the case during the hearing of a revision petition moved by Salman against a sentence of five years in the poaching case of a Chinkara on 28-29 September, 1998 in Mathania.

The court observed that the pellets recovered from the hotel rooms of Salman Khan and Saif Ali Khan were not only different from those said to have been recovered from the vehicle, but also of inferior quality.

Similarly about the knife, which was allegedly used by Salman for slitting the throat and peeling off the skin of the poached Chinkara, the court observed that it was like a pocket knife.

The judge said she wanted to have a look at the knife to see if it was big enough to be used by Khan for killing the animal.

Defence counsel Mahesh Bora argued that all the pellets belonged to air guns and could not be fatal for any animal.

“The pellets recovered from Salman’s room were double headed ones whereas those recovered from Saif’s room were of two types (steel and led) and both of these could not be used in any fire arm,” he argued.

With this, the defence completed the arguments on Wednesday in the hearing stretching one hour beyond the scheduled time of the court, wherein he pointed to a series of gaps and loopholes in the police investigation.

The prosecution will now start arguments from 10 May.

Here’s why celebrities would be forced to restrain brand endorsements willy-nilly

Celebrities now will have to exercise extreme caution in selection of brand endorsements as the Parliamentary Standing Committee is all out to make celebrities responsible for misleading ads.

In the report, the Committee headed by Telugu Desam Party MP JC Divakar Reddy has submitted recommendations to Parliament laying down stringent provisions including jail term up to five years and hefty penalty of up to 50 lakh in order to protect consumer interest.

Celebrity ads_ 380The role of brand ambassadors has been under scrutiny since the time Indian cricket icon Mahendra Singh Dhoni was bombarded with tweets by unhappy residents of Amprapali society of which he was a brand ambassador, over inaccessible delay in house possession and incomplete handover, asking Dhoni to dissociate himself from the builder.

Since then a lot of debate has transpired on the role of a brand ambassador and what happens if a product fails on committed values.Are brand ambassadors liable to punishment? Celebrities who influence masses to buy a product, based on their eminent role as respected leaders in their fields, should they not be held responsible to some degree for the failure of a product? This controversial point of debate in Indian advertising context has been put to rest with the Parliamentary panel suggestions. It comes strong specially for misrepresentation of food product.

“The Central Consumer Protection Council’s (CCPC) view was that celebrities should be responsible for misleading advertisements,” Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said.

Further, the CCPC chairman thought that guidelines should be etched out for brand ambassadors.

Celebrities have been facing criticism over brand endorsements. Some celebrities have come under fire recently for endorsing brands outside their arena.

The case of actor Salman Khan being made a goodwill ambassador of Indian contingent for Rio Olympics has got the tongues wagging- a film star promoting sports- how this can be ignoring a number of shining sport stalwarts.

The focus has come on the organisation too – the Indian Olympic Association – and why there arose a need to bypass the merits of those within the sports ambit to select a personality who is not a sports person per se. One good thing that may happen through this scrutiny is that the IOA, which at the moment lacks funds and is a hindrance to many a struggling budding sport stars, may get revived on an urgent basis.

Perhaps the IOA chaps thought Salman fitted the role as an ambassador as he dons the role of a wrestler in his forthcoming film ‘Wrestler’.

But this act of IOA has been perceived as demeaning to scores of sportsmen who have done India proud on many occasions. Many think organisations like IOA instead of relegating their own sports people to the background should actually use every single opportunity to bring to limelight the unsung heroes of sports.

When voices were raised against this decision of IOA to appoint Salman Khan as goodwill ambassador, Salman’s father Salim Khan, rose to the defense of his son, perhaps going too far in tweeting that Milkha Singh should be thankful that Bollywood revived him.

Now, that remark did not gel well with people.

Poor Salman, as a goodwill act he had ventured to promote the Olympic games in Rio. Little did he know that such brouhaha would be created over his new role.

After all, he was only being human.

I guess, now the whole endorsement scenario would change with the onus of a product to some extent falling on the celebrity endorsing it.

All those celebrities who had been getting the dough without an inclination of the product they were endorsing will now think twice and perhaps understand the dilemma of customers more clearly when they too face the same situation of judging a product.

This holds relevance especially in the case of real estate, which is the highest product asset in retail. And one way the customers decide on a particular product is definitely influenced by the brand ambassadors they see and believe in who coax buyers to purchase the product.

The real estate entity, Amrapali Group, which hired Indian cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni to promote a set of Amrapali Homes is now history.

Dhoni’s respect as a cricket star drew home buyers who associated with Dhoni’s persona and the values that he stands for, to buy homes that he endorsed.

Now, the problem arose when the product failed to be delivered. These people then complained that they had been attracted by the star who appeared in all advertisement mediums – hoardings, newspapers and magazines – almost vouching genuinely for the product in his capacity as a genuine cricket star who delivers.

This was for the first time that home consumers resorted to involve the brand ambassador through social media platform to make him aware that the product he endorsed failed to be delivered as promised.

Desperate residents of Amrapali Saphhire, a housing society in Noida built by Amrapali Group, after a long commitment gap by the builder, tagged Mahendra Singh Dhoni, in social media tweets.

Also, floods of tweets came through the respective buyers of Amrapali Golf Homes who had booked in 2009 and were to be handed out possession in January 2015 but were still waiting as construction was not fully completed. Losing their patience with the builder who had been prevaricating, consumers let the eminent brand ambassador know about their anguish and the product delay.

The consumers could not have found a better man to champion their cause.

Being a responsible cricketer, Dhoni created encouragement among consumers by agreeing to talk to the builder as to why the projects were not delivered.

Afterwards, as social media campaigns grew stronger with tweets #AmrapaliMisuseDhoni, Dhoni disassociated himself from Amrapali Group as brand ambassador, proving to some extent the moral responsibility which he was bowed down with.

Talking to a television channel, noted columnist Suhel Seth remarked, “Celebrities are not responsible for product failures.” Countering this view, consumer expert Bijan Mishra pointed out that advertisements cannot be misleading.

Real estate builder, R K Arora, Chairman, Supertech too thinks celebrities should not be responsible for product failures. He says, “Celebrity endorsements do not have much effect in real estate.”

Had that been the case there would not be any need to engage celebrities to endorse real estate brands. But a lot many do, so celebrity endorsements do have an effect on real estate. We have the Dhoni Amrapali case study.

The truth is, in real estate, almost every other developer fails to deliver product on time, and since it is not just one home but a lifestyle destination built in a large-scale project, several issues keep cropping up, inevitably delaying the project. I can very well see the disappearance of brand ambassadors in real estate if they are made liable for misleading ads.

But here’s another pertinent question to ponder over: Should celebrities be promoting a cause/product without believing in them and without being morally conscious about it?

With the government getting strict about celebrity endorsements and the consumers increasingly stooping to social media to air their grievances, the moral pinching could put quite a pressure on the roles essayed by brand ambassadors.

Perhaps this would act as a deterrent and in future celebrities would stick to their respective career roles as an actor, cricketer, artist, etc. and be less inclined to indulge in other areas where risk to their social position stood a chance.
So think twice, all ye celebrities, before you endorse a product.

Hema Malini backs Salman Khan as goodwill ambassador of India’s Olympic contingent

New Delhi: BJP MP and yesteryear actress Hema Malini on Monday supported the decision of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) to appoint Salman Khan as goodwill ambassador of India’s Olympic contingent, saying his popularity is being utilised for a good cause.

“People love him so much. So if he is the brand ambassador, what is the problem,” she said.

Asked about his alleged involvement in the hit-and-run case, she told reporters outside Parliament House, said that was a “section of his life…his popularity has to be utilised for a good cause.”

The IOA is on the backfoot after Khan’s appointment as goodwill ambassador of India’s Olympic contingent was criticised by some top sportspersons, including star wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt and sprint legend Milkha Singh.

Salman, who is playing the role of a wrestler in his upcoming film ‘Sultan’, was named goodwill ambassador by the IOA.

dna Afternoon Must Reads: Chief Justice TS Thakur’s breakdown; wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt furious at Salman Khan and more

1. Watch: Chief Justice of India TS Thakur breaks down as he urges for more judgesAn emotional CJI T S Thakur on Sunday lamented “inaction” by the Executive to increase the number of judges from the present 21,000 to 40,000 to handle the “avalanche” of litigations. Read more here<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>2. MEA revokes Vijay Mallya’s passportThe Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has cancelled the passport of liquor baron Vijay Mallya on Sunday. Read more here3. TMC Photoshop row: Prakash Karat files complaint against Derek O’ BrienCPI(M) leader Prakash Karat has filed a complaint against TMC leader and MP Derek O’ Brien for using his morphed picture with Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh. Read more here4. US Elections: Top Republican financier Charles Koch says ‘It’s possible’ Clinton might make better presidentBillionaire industrialist Charles Koch, a key source of financing for conservative US Republican causes along with his brother, said Democrat Hillary Clinton might make a better president than the candidates in the Republican field. Read more here5. Rio Olympics: Wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt furious at Salman Khan’s appointment as India’s goodwill ambassadorBollywood star Salman Khan’s appointment as the Indian Olympic contingent’s goodwill ambassador has not gone down well with star wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt. Read more here6. SPOILER ALERT: Leaked images from ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 6 episode 1 have so much to tell!HBO has been guarding season 6 of Game of Thrones like the existence of this planets depends on it. Alas, they failed. Read more here

‘No proof of alcohol consumption’: Six statements made by Salman Khan affidavit in SC

Details from Salman Khan’s 83-page affidavit filed in the Supreme Court with regard to his 2002 hit-and-run case, were accessed by media houses on Wednesday. Their reports reveal that Salman has contested all the charges against him, and further, accused the state of tampering with evidence to incriminate him.

Salman Khan. Image from IBNliveSalman Khan. Image from IBNlive

Salman Khan. Image from IBNlive

The superstar’s affidavit raises some very specific points, including:

1. The timing of the FIR recording, which he says is “suspect”

2. A clear assertion of innocence — “I was not driving the car,” Salman has stated.

3. A question on why a material witness in the case — actor-singer Kamaal Khan, who was in the car with Salman at the tiem fo the alleged accident — was not examined. “Why was Kamaal Khan not examined?” asks Salman in his statement.

4.”(There is) no proof I consumed alcohol,” says Salman in his affidavit. In fact, he goes on to add that the state has no witnesses to back up their claim that he was under the influence of alcohol at the time of the incident.

5. That the statements of the injured were coached by the prosecution. Specifically, Salman’s affidavit says: “The injured were tutored by the prosecution”.

6. The actor says he has been “falsely implicated” and that the prosecution “tampered with the documentation” all with the intent to “incriminate me”.

The actor was acquitted in December 2015 by the Bombay High Court of all charges in the 2002 hit-and-run case, in which he had been accused of driving over five pavement dwellers, while in an inebriated state. In doing so, it overturned a trial court’s ruling in May 2015 that had found Salman guilty.

However, the Maharashtra government moved the Supreme Court against the High Court’s verdict in January this year. Salman’s affidavit in the Supreme Court has been filed in response to the same.

dna Afternoon Must Reads: From Vijay Mallya promising to pay banks to Salman Khan becoming a ‘mama’

1. Will pay Rs 4,000 crore by September: Vijay Mallya tells banksKingfisher Airlines and business tycoon Vijay Mallya proposed to the Supreme Court on Wednesday that it will pay back around Rs 4,000 crore to banks by September this year. Read more here<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>2. ‘Indian RAW spy’ row: Pakistan cooking stories, doctoring videos to defame India, says governmentGovernment on Wednesday said that the arrest of an alleged Indian spy and his subsequent ‘confession’ was an attempt to malign India’s image. Read more here3. Uttarakhand crisis: BJP has strangled democracy, may create instability in country, says Shiv SenaShiv Sena on Wednesday came out strongly against ally BJP over imposition of President’s rule in Uttarakhand. Read more here4. World T20: Great news, Yuvraj Singh might be fit for India v/s West Indies!While Manish Pandey has been called up as a possible replacement for the injured Yuvraj Singh there is a belief that the southpaw might be fit for India’s crunch clash against West Indies. Read more here5. Google’s new landline phone service lives in a cloudGoogle on Tuesday, March 29 unveiled a new landline telephone service aimed at helping consumers stay connected in the Internet cloud. Read more here6. Check out the first image of Salman Khan’s sister Arpita’s baby boyBollywood superstar Salman Khan’s sister Arpita Khan Sharma and her husband Aayush Sharma have welcomed a baby boy. Read more here

dna Morning Must Reads: From terror alert in India to Salman Khan’s future plans

Mumbai, Delhi on alert after terror intel; 6 IS trained Nigerians trying to sneak into India from PakistanTaking no chances, the Union home ministry has issued a terror alert for Mumbai, Delhi and four other undisclosed locations based on intel. Read more here<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Jail in better condition than campus, say Hyderabad Central University facultyFaculty members of Hyderabad Central University who visited their students and colleagues under arrest came away saying “the jail is better than the campus, as there is food and water.” Read more here Pak arrests ex-Indian Navy officer for spying in Balochistan; India says no govt linksDays before Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to meet his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif at the Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, a former Indian Navy officer was on Thursday arrested in Balochistan for allegedly spying and being involved in “subversive” activities. The Indian Ministry of External Affairs, however, said that the person – identified as Kul Yadav Bhushan – “has no link with the government since his premature retirement from Indian Navy”. Read more hereTed Cruz rubbishes allegations of extramarital affairRepublican Ted Cruz said on Friday an article in the National Enquirer tabloid newspaper accusing him of extramarital affairs was “garbage, complete and utter lies” and accused his opponent Donald Trump of being the source of the story. Read more here The only thing that matters is the script: Salman Khan Salman Khan speaks about launching his own production venture and giving newbies a chance. Read more here

‘I have been falsely implicated,’ says Salman Khan in Jodhpur court

Bollywood superstar Salman Khan has pleaded “not guilty” in his Arms Act case in a Jodhpur court.

The Times of India reported that Khan left Mumbai in the early hours of Thursday morning, and reached Jodhpur by 9.15 am. After consulting with his lawyers, Khan headed to court to record his statement before the chief judicial magistrate.

Salman Khan will appear in a Jodhpur court today. Image from AFPSalman Khan will appear in a Jodhpur court today. Image from AFP

Salman Khan will appear in a Jodhpur court today. Image from AFP

This is the third time that Salman has appeared in the Jodhpur court for the same case.

During the course of the hearing on Thursday, Salman replied to general questions the court posed with respect to his name, his father’s name, age, residential address and caste etc. However, on being asked about the allegations levelled against him by the prosecution, Salman pleaded “not guilty”.

He said to the court: “Main nirdosh hoon. Mujhe jhootha fansaya gaya hai (I am not guilty and I have been falsely implicated).”

Salman’s sister Alvira and his bodyguard Shera were also present during the court proceedings. He stayed in the court for less than half an hour.

Chief Judicial Magistrate Dalpat Singh Rajpurohit on March 3 asked Salman to appear before the court to record his statement as an accused in the court.

The Arms Act case against the actor is an offshoot of the blackbuck poaching incident which took place in October 1998 near Jodhpur, while he was shooting for Sooraj Barjatya’s Hum Saath Saath Hain. Salman had been accused of poaching three chinkaras and a blackbuck near Kankani village.

Later, the forest department registered a case under the Arms Act against Khan on 15 October 1998, stating that the licences of the guns used he used for allegedly hunting the animals.

According to The Indian Express, however, Khan has argued that he had applied for the licences to be renewed.

The Arms Act was passed by the Indian parliament in 1959 to curb the use of illegal weapons in the country.

With inputs from IANS

dna Must Reads: From latest in Jat quota row to Sonam Kapoor’s performance in Neerja

1. Live | Jat quota row: Haryana Min Captain Abhimanyu’s house set on fire; 1 killed in police firingJat leaders in Rohtak, Haryana have refused to withdraw their agitation till a legislation is passed giving quota to the community under OBC even as the authorities in the worst-affected district suspended Internet and mobile SMS services due to the stir which has disrupted rail and road traffic. Read more here. <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>2. Centre likely to hike dearness allowance to 125% from existing 119%The Centre is likely to hike dearness allowance (DA) to 125% from existing 119%, which would benefit its over 10 million employees and pensioners. “Average rate of Consumer Price Index-Industrial Labour from January to December, 2015 was 6.73%. Read more here.3. Pathankot terror attack: Pakistan lodges FIR, JeM’s Maulana Masood Azhar not named in complaintPakistani authorities have lodged an FIR into the Pathankot terror attack case, officials said on Friday, after weeks of probe into the assault that led to the postponement of Indo-Pak Foreign Secretary-level talks. The FIR was registered at Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) centre at Gujranwala in Punjab province yesterday. Read more here.4. Neerja Review: A career-best portrayal by Sonam Kapoor captures a true hero’s gritCourage – it’s a virtue everyone possesses, but only a few choose to use it. Neerja Bhanot was one of them and that’s what makes her life so remarkable. Ram Madhvani’s film, named after the protagonist, is an intensely woven tale of the young airhostess who saved hundreds of lives when her flight was hijacked by terrorists in 1986. Read more here.5. Salman Khan hit-and-run case: SC issues notice to actor on Maha govt’s plea challenging acquittalThe Supreme Court has issued notice to Salman Khan based on the Maharasthra government’s plea challenging his acquittal to Bombay High court in the 2002 hit-and-run case. During the hearing,the counsel for Salman Khan told SC that there was no reference in prosecution evidence that he was drunk and that the FIR didn’t mention it either. Read more here.

JNU, my alma mater, is anti-national? For the love of our country, stop!

By Shivangi Narayan

While travelling from RK Puram to JNU, the auto driver asked me why so much police was present on the campus; if there were actual “bombs” that were caught. I told him it was just a few sloganeering students that caught the state’s fancy. He made a face and said: “kamaal hai” (it’s brilliant).

It is indeed brilliant. The debates and discussions in the past week on JNU have now taken a surreal turn for the average student. We don’t know what to make sense of.

Protests under way at JNU: Solaris

Protests under way at JNU: Solaris

We don’t know how we – professors and students at JNU who are involved in the most nationalistic of all causes, imparting and taking in knowledge – have suddenly become anti-nationals.

Being ‘anti-national’

According to Professor Vivek Kumar, Centre for Study of Social Systems at JNU who echoes sentiments across boards, the institution has been producing the finest bureaucrats, policy makers, media personalities and even politicians for the last 47 years. These people practically run the country (Nirmala Sitharaman, Amitabh Kant, just to name a few). Abroad, their work puts India in the league of most developed nations.

After 47 years of all this work, Kumar asks, how can JNU suddenly become ‘anti-national?

Kumar, came to JNU 25 years ago, calls it his “social mother.” According to him, calling JNU anti-national is questioning the very process of education that enables one to think critically.

One of the standing practices in social sciences is to constantly verify the sources of knowledge rather than taking anything at face value.

We are asked to check the context, and even the time period of a particular work. Nothing is wrong or right but a subject of further analysis. Without such critical thinking, students might as well be mass-produced on an assembly line.

JNU is the only university in India where actual diversity exists. In Professor Kumar’s words, it is an “aspirational university.”

People from Daltonganj to Azamgarh, from dalits and tribals to Muslims and Christians come here to fulfill their dreams because it is actually possible.

Events in history, extreme exploitation, subjugation have given birth to Naxalism in this country. It is a real, existent phenomenon. It involves engaging with the realities of India.

Anti-national? If tribal students from central India want to discuss mining in their hometown, should we brand them as anti-nationals? To do that would be to deny them the space in history that is claimed only by a certain section of a society. As Kanhaiya Kumar rightly said in one of his speeches, JNU is fighting for the marginalised’s right to history in India.

Taxpayers heartache

Contrary to everyone’s heartache about taxpayers’ money, there is severe resource crunch in JNU. Good research needs good money. Data needs to be collected. Field visits need to be done. Books need to be bought. Sometimes research associates (RAs) need to be hired. A friend’s friend from Harvard came to India for some research and paid two RAs Rs 1 lakh each for two months of data collection/sorting/tabulation. Can any Indian research scholar dream of doing that?

After paying the mess bill, JNU non-JRF scholars are left with Rs 2,000 for an entire month. People in Delhi spend that amount in one evening on a dinner.

An average research student in the liberal arts, social sciences and humanities, one who has not qualified for the UGC,NET, JRF, lives on Rs 5,000-a-month and Rs 4,000-a-year contingency grant. Postgraduate students do not get any money.

One who has qualified UGC, NET, JRF gets a grant of Rs 25,000 per month and Rs 10,000 per year as contingency grant (for books, photocopies and stationery) in liberal arts, social sciences and humanities.

This UGC grant is for all central universities in India and not exclusively for JNU. And these scholarships come intermittently. During the Occupy UGC protests nationwide against scholarship cuts, students did not receive their scholarship for six months.

Yes, the hostels are subsidised – food is Rs 2,000 to Rs 2,500 per month and the security deposit for the rooms, refundable, is Rs 3,000 only. The annual fee for any course is under Rs 200.

But let’s put that in perspective. Young adults enter JNU when they are around 21 years of age, for their post graduation (only one school offers undergraduate courses in JNU, the school of languages, all other schools are post graduation and above).

This is a time when young people want to stop asking for money from their parents. They enter the world of research when many of their peers are getting into the workforce as engineers, advertising professionals, and media persons. At this stage, when they can get any other job paying them upwards to Rs 15,000 a month, is merely subsidising hostel and food enough?

At the research level, students are typically 24 -25 years old. At this stage, when they can’t even ask their parents for money, is mere Rs 5,000 per month enough?

A research scholar’s dissertation is a knowledge product for our country. Policies are made on this research – shouldn’t they be compensated for their work?

If knowledge production is such a wasted job, why do people in India make loud noises when they are told about India’s near absence in patents? Why do we then laud people who excel in research abroad?

Some students in JNU are so poor they have to share their stipend money with their siblings and their parents.

Rohith Vemula sent his JRF money home to his mother. This cannot be seen as an abuse of the fellowship but the only way some bright young minds of this country can enter the education and research system.

There are students in JNU who are brilliant enough to get fellowships in the UK and the US but are so poor that they do not have means to buy the air ticket to avail those fellowships. There is no budget to redress this issue. Most of the times, it is the JNU community including the professors, who come to their aid.

JNU’s annual budget, according to some news reports, is around Rs 150 crore. The total planned expenditure for India for 2014-15 was Rs 4,67,934 crore. The Education budget for the same year was 69,074 crore. One can realize what a miniscule decimal point it is of the higher education expenditure and not something taxpayers need to bleed their heart out.

If we have to compare our education and research with developed countries, we have to also see how much they spend on each student. According to a report in Quartz (http://qz.com/616684/for-stingy-indian-taxpayers-subsidised-jnu-students-are-parasites-but-iit-ones-are-idols/), China spends $2,700 on each student yearly, while India, $400.

The latest event

The whole university has condemned the “India ki barbadi tak” slogans raised in JNU on 9 February. That the university’s premises were used for such an act has also been condemned in the strongest of voices.

It is not even certain whether students raising those objectionable slogans were from the University.

JNU premises are open spaces because the University ethos claim that one needs open mental and physical space for proper thinking.

JNU has strongly rejected being a surveillance campus and contrary to what some news anchors said, not everyone’s ID cards are checked when they enter. Students on foot, in autos, bikes and buses enter and leave as they please.

Yes the slogans were raised. However, were these slogans seditious? Did they incite violence so much so that it would lead to the breaking up of the country?

No, no and no.

In a country where Salman Khan is let off for lack of evidence and Sanjay Dutt, in a TADA case, makes a mockery of his sentence by being more on parole than being in jail, can you blame a JNU student for questioning the legitimacy of the Afzhal Guru trial?

A trial where the judgement itself stated that Guru was being sent to the gallows more to satiate the collective conscience of the people than for satisfactory evidence.

Before people start frothing at their mouths for the slogans that followed, the entire JNU community condemns them and stands for a university-level enquiry into the incident. The student organisers deserve at least a fair enquiry, if nothing else.

But before anyone could look into the incident, find out who said what and sieve fact from fiction the government had begun its trial and the media had given its verdict.

The minimum the government could have done was to get the tapes checked in a forensic lab before arresting the University’s student union (JNUSU) president for sedition.

They could have set up a university-level enquiry first. It is difficult to say who fed on whom but news channels had a field day maligning the one University of repute in this country.

Was it nationalistic to insult JNU, its 47 year old reputation, its students, its culture, its research and its education nationally as well as internationally?

What prospects do now remain for students who are applying for Fulbright and Ford Foundation fellowships; for those who are going to present their papers across India and the world and for those applying for postdoctoral studies abroad?

How has such a swift condemnation of every student of JNU and the institution brought any honour to India’s name?

How can any nationalist be proud of this?

(The author is research scholar, Centre for Study of Social Systems, JNU. She is currently working on ‘State Simplification, digital identification and governance in India. Ex. senior correspondent, technology, Governance Now).

Salman Khan’s acquittal a ‘travesty of justice’, Maharashtra government tells Supreme Court

Describing the acquittal of Bollywood actor Salman Khan in a 2002 hit-and-run case a “travesty of justice”, the Maharashtra government argued and sought the Supreme Court to reverse the Bombay High Court order on the ground that Salman was behind the wheels when his SUV mowed down a man who was sleeping on the pavement.Attorney General (AG) Mukul Rohatgi, who appeared for the state of Maharashtra, told a bench headed by Justice J S Khehar that, “There is every evidence in every stage against Salman. His acquittal is complete travesty of justice,” and described as “perverse” the high court’s December 2015 order, overturning the trial court’s conviction order against the 50-year-old actor.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Questioning Salman’s conduct of not informing the police soon after the incident, Rohatgi said “instead of informing the police and taking the victims to the hospital, he (Salman) ran away from the spot” and added that even the Motor Vehicle Act also mandates that the victim should be given medical attention first. He also pointed out that Salman had consumed liquor and was drunk while driving the Land Cruiser which killed a person sleeping on the pavement.”Even after 12 hours of the accident, his blood sample was found with .6 alcohol content, which is more,” Rohatgi said and pointed out that official record says Salman had no Driving Licence (DL) in 2002 and he had obtained his first DL in 2004.Referring to the trial court order which sentenced him to five years’ jail term after finding guilty, the senior-most law officer of the government said the theory that the car was being driven by Salman’s driver, who surfaced after 13 years, should be discarded.”Not at a single stage, the presence of driver was mentioned by the witnesses in the case and suddenly the defence witness surfaced,” he said.To this submission, the bench asked AG “what was the nature of questions the prosecution had posed to the driver while cross-examining him during the testimony?”Narrating the facts of the case, the Attorney General said that Salman, his body guard (Mumbai police constable Ravindra Patil, who died during the trial), and friend Kamal Khan were the occupants in the SUV.”The high court has ignored the statement given by Patil before the magistrate, but accepted the defence argument that Ashok Brahm Dev Singh was driving the vehicle. Singh was Salman’s father Salim Khan’s driver since 1990 and suddenly he surfaced to give testimony in the case 12 after the incident had happened,” he submitted.After hearing the argument for about 45 minutes, the bench declined to issue notice or pass any interim order saying “because it is an appeal against acquittal, we will make up our mind before passing any order. Whatever you want to argue, you can do that.”It fixed February 12 as next date for further hearing of the case.In May last year, a sessions court had ruled that the actor was guilty of running over a man sleeping on the pavement outside American bakery in Mumbai after a night out drinking on September 28, 2002.The high court reversed the order saying that the prosecution had failed to establish beyond doubt that the actor was driving and was drunk at the time of the accident.’Maha govt holds good chance’Women’s rights activist and lawyer Abha Singh on Friday said the Maharashtra government holds a good chance in the hit-and-run case involving Salman Khan as the Bombay High Court has erred by citing loopholes and not going into the legal merits of this matter.

Salman Khan moves Supreme Court in 2002 hit-and-run case

Bollywood superstar Salman Khan has filed a caveat in the Supreme Court seeking to pre-empt any ex-parte order in the appeal filed by the Maharashtra government challenging Bombay High Court verdict acquitting him in the 2002 hit-and-run case.The actor, whose five-year jail term awarded by a trial court was overturned by the high court, said in his plea that no order should be passed in the matter without hearing his counsel.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Maharashtra government had on January 22 moved the apex court against Bombay High Court’s verdict freeing Salman Khan in the hit-and-run case in which one person was killed and four others were injured.The special leave petition (SLP) contained 47 grounds to assail the high court’s verdict and sought restoration of the trial court’s decision by which the 50-year-old actor was convicted and sentenced to five-year-jail term.The high court, in its verdict passed on December 10 last year, had held that the prosecution had failed to prove “beyond reasonable doubt” that the actor was driving the vehicle at the time of the accident and was drunk.The judgement by the high court had come on an appeal by the superstar, seven months after he was pronounced guilty by trial court of running over five people sleeping on a pavement in suburban Bandra with his Toyota Land Cruiser, killing one and causing injury to four others on October 28, 2002.On May 6 last year, a sessions court had convicted Salman in the case in which one person was killed and four others were injured when his vehicle had crushed them when they were asleep on a pavement outside a laundry.

2002 hit and run case: Maharashtra govt challenges Salman Khan acquittal in Supreme Court

The Maharashtra government moved the Supreme Court on Friday, challenging Bollywood star Salman Khan’s acquittal in a 2002 hit-and-run case by the Bombay High Court in December 2015.

Salman Khan. AFPSalman Khan. AFP

Salman Khan. AFP

The actor was convicted in May 2015 by a trial court of killing a man with his SUV following a drinking session on the night of 28 September, 2002. Khan’s Toyota Land Cruiser ran over five men sleeping outside American Express bakery in Mumbai’s Bandra locality.

The High Court had shot down the trial court’s ruling on December 10, and acquitted Khan of all charges and scrapped his five-year jail term. The high court said that the prosecution was not able to sufficiently establish that the 49-year-old star was behind the wheel that night or was drunk at the time of the accident.

The appeal, filed by state counsel Nishant R Katneshwarkar, criticizes the HC ruling on the ground that it ignored Salman’s conduct who did not make any attempt to report the accident to the police.

The state is questioning how the actor took the defence, for the first time in 12 years, that his driver was driving the vehicle at the time of the accident, reports The Hindustan Times.

The HC had ignored the crucial statement of the injured witness who had testified Salman was on the driver’s seat, the state said. It insisted the court should have taken into account the evidence of the actor’s bodyguard, Ravindra Patil. Patil had died by the time trial started in the case.

The Indian Express reports that Maharashtra’s chief standing counsel Nishant R Katneshwarkar filed the petition. Here, the state of Maharashtra is refuting the HC finding that the probe was conducted to weaken the prosecution’s case.

The state police version in the new petition is that the Bombay High Court has “not appreciated the evidence on record in its proper perspective.”

The Maharashtra government petition disputes the High Court view that the investigation was careless and faulty. The State government claims that enough witnesses were examined to frame charges against Salman Khan.

The appeal said evidence of complainant Ravindra Patil, who was with Salman in the Toyota Land Cruiser, was legally tenable and its rejection was wrong. Patil was the actor’s bodyguard who had said Salman was driving drunk and had ignored his warnings.

Patil died of tuberculosis in 2007. The petition says the prosecution could not have been indicted for non-examination of Kamaal Khan in the trial court, who was also in the SUV on September 28, 2002. It said the HC had also ignored the “conduct” of Salman as he did not make any attempt to report the incident to police or help the victims.

2002 hit-and-run case: Bombay High Court gives Salman Khan two more weeks to furnish sureties

The Bombay High Court on Tuesday granted two weeks additional time to actor Salman Khan to furnish sureties as directed by it while acquitting him in the 2002 hit-and-run case.On December 10, Justice A R Joshi of the high court had acquitted Salman and quashed and set aside the trial court’s order convicting the actor and sentencing him to five years in jail, for allegedly driving his car under the influence of alcohol and running over people sleeping on the footpath in suburban Bandra in 2002. One person lost his life in the incident. Salman was convicted by the trial court for culpable homicide not amounting to murder.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The actor had appealed against his conviction and the high court allowed the appeal and acquitted Salman. Justice Joshi, while acquitting Salman, directed him to submit two sureties of Rs 25,000, as per section 437-A of CrPC. The sureties had to be submitted within two weeks. The actor yesterday approached the high court once again, seeking further time to submit the sureties as certain formalities are not yet over. Justice AM Thipsay today permitted the actor two more weeks to complete the formalities and submit the sureties.

Attempts to create communal tension in Goa in recent past: CM Parsekar

The former legislators being experienced should intervene in the issues which have the potential to create communal discord, he said. The Legislators Day is held to mark the commencement of first Assembly session of Goa on January 9, 1964.

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Govt considering Aadhaar Card for NRIs: Sushma Swaraj

“Your achievements in the countries of your adoption are a matter of pride… It is our responsibility to protect you and take care of you. Indeed, we are you and you are us,” she said.

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Drunk driving will lead you to lose your license for 3 months in Maharashtra

Raote further said the condition of one year driving experience for women autorickshaw drivers has been waived. He said the applicants will have to be a domicile of the state for 15 years and should have knowledge of Marathi language.

PTI
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