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Freedom of speech and expression not an absolute right: Bombay High Court

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The Bombay High Court on Friday said the freedom of speech and expression provided under Article 19 of the Constitution was not an absolute right.

The court made the observation while refusing to grant interim protection from arrest to a woman charged by the Mumbai and Palghar police for allegedly making offensive remarks on Twitter against Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and his son Aditya Thackeray.

A bench of Justices SS Shinde and MS Karnik, however, accepted the state government’s oral assurance that the woman, Sunaina Holey, will not be arrested in the case at least for the next two weeks.

The state, however, added that such relief will be subject to Ms Holey visiting the Azad Maidan and Tulinj police stations Mumbai and Palghar district, respectively, for questioning, and “cooperating” with the police in their probe.

The bench also allowed Ms Holey to approach the court at any time during this period in case the police decide to take any coercive action against her, or if any of her rights were breached.

Ms Holey has approached the Bombay High Court through her counsel Abhinav Chandrachud, seeking that all the charges against her be dropped.

As an interim relief, she had sought that the court grant her protection from arrest till her case was heard finally and the court took a decision on quashing the FIRs against her.

Ms Holey has three FIRs filed against her, one in BKC cyber crime police station, another at Azad Maidan police station, and the third one at Tulinj police station in Palghar.

The FIRs were registered following complaints made by several persons, including by one Rohan Chavhan, a leader of the Shiv Sena’s youth wing Yuva Sena.

As per the complaints, Sunaina Holey, 38, made offensive and defamatory comments against the Chief Minister and his son on Twitter.

She was arrested in August this year and released on bail in the case pertaining to the FIR registered against her by the BKC cyber crimes police.

On the remaining two FIRs, she was served notices under section 41A(1) of the CrPC, asking her to visit the concerned police stations for probe.

On Friday, the state’s counsel YP Yagnik told the court that Holey had not responded to the notices.

Advocate Chandrachud, however, said that his client was apprehensive that if she visited the police, she would be arrested. Therefore, he sought interim relief. However, the bench said that interim protection from arrest could be granted only for arrest in rare case

But it noted that the section 41 (A) provided that a person need not be arrested as long as he or she was cooperating with the police’s probe. And in case one is required to be arrested, the police must give prior notice for such arrest.

Mr Yagnik said that the police wasn’t merely focused on arresting Ms Holey, but it wanted to make progress in its probe.

The court accepted Ms Holey’s submission that she will visit the two police stations next week.

Sunaina Holey, a Navi Mumbai resident, has been charged under IPC sections 505 (2) for statements creating or promoting enmity, hatred or ill-will between classes and 153 (A) for promoting enmity between different religious groups, and under relevant sections of the IT Act.

According to police, she had made a series of posts on social media between July 25 and 28, including an offensive caricature of Uddhav Thackeray and Aditya Thackeray.

On Friday, while pressing for interim relief, advocate Chandrachud told the court that the case was a “rarest of rare” one as Holey was now being targeted for any and all of her tweets.

His client’s rights under Article 19 of the Constitution were being breached, he argued.

“This has now attained a political colour and for every tweet I have an FIR registered. I am having to run from pillar to post,” advocate Chandrachud said.

The bench however, reminded that one’s right to free speech and expression under Article 19 were not absolute. “Perhaps citizens are under the impression that freedom of speech and expression is an absolute right, without any restrictions,” the bench said.

Mr Chandrachud, however, said Sunaina Holey was not under such impression.

The court will hear Holey on the issue of quashing the FIRs on September 29. It also directed the state to file its reply to Ms Holey’s plea by then.

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Who owns the Qutub Minar complex? The court will pronounce its verdict on December 12.

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Image Credits: pixahive.com

The matter of demanding the right of worship in the Qutub Minar complex is once again in discussion. In fact, the Saket court has reserved its decision on the reconsideration petition filed in the matter. Delhi’s Saket court will pronounce its verdict on December 12.

This reconsideration petition was filed by petitioner Kunwar Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad in Saket Court. In fact, the Saket court had rejected the petitioner Kunwar Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad’s petition in the matter of ownership of Qutub Minar. Kunwar Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad Singh had filed a petition claiming ownership over Qutub Minar.

By filing the first petition, Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad Singh had demanded to make himself a party in this matter. It was said in his petition that the government had taken over the entire property in 1947 without our permission. This petition was rejected by the court.

The last time in September, when the ASI’s lawyer opposed the petition of Kunwar Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad Singh, saying that Sultan Begum had claimed the ownership rights over the Red Fort, we had opposed that petition in the Delhi High Court. Even then the court had accepted that there is no basis for the demand made in the petition. ASI had requested to dismiss the petition of Kunwar Mahendra Dhawaj Prasad Singh.

Source: Aajtak

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Dry day, holiday in schools, metro timings also changed… know the changes before the MCD elections in Delhi

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The noise of campaigning for the Municipal Corporation elections in Delhi has come to an end. On Sunday i.e. December 4, votes will be cast to elect councilors in 250 wards. Before this, the Delhi government made three major changes so that the election arrangements can be implemented smoothly. In view of the elections, the Excise Department has declared a dry day for three days in Delhi. That is, there will be a ban on the sale of liquor in Delhi from Friday to Sunday. Liquor shops will remain closed on all three days. Apart from this, a holiday has been declared for all government schools on Saturday by the Delhi government. Due to the next day being Sunday, there will be a holiday in the schools. The third decision has been taken by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation. Metro services will be available every half an hour from 4 am on Sunday, the day of voting. This process will continue till 6 in the morning.

On behalf of the Education Department of the Delhi government, it was told that due to the preparations for the voting to be held on Sunday, a holiday has been declared for all government schools on Saturday. In return, schools will remain open on 10 December i.e. on the second Saturday of the month.

Liquor shops will remain closed for three days in the capital

Similarly, Delhi will have a dry day for three days from Friday. Delhi Excise Commissioner Krishna Mohan Uppu told that under Rule 52 of Excise Rules 2010, December 2 to 4 and December 7 will be dry days. Dry days are those days when the government bans the sale of liquor in shops, clubs, bars. According to the notification, there will be a dry day in Delhi from 5.30 pm on Friday, 2 December to 5.30 pm on 4 December. Not only this, there will be a dry day on 7th December i.e. the whole day of the results. That means there will be a ban on the sale of liquor.

Metro service will start at 4 am on Sunday

At the same time, Delhi Metro Railway Corporation (DMRC) has made changes in metro operations on the day of polling. Metro services will be started at 4 am on December 4 (Sunday), the day of voting in MCD elections. Metro will be available on all lines at an interval of every half an hour from 4 am to 6 am. After 6 am, the normal frequency will continue like normal days. Delhi Metro is currently providing services on a total of 10 lines, including Red Line, Yellow, Blue, Green, Violet, Pink, Magenta, Gray, and Airport Express Line.

Source: Aajtak

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Man kills live-in partner with cleaver in West Delhi

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Photo by Hassan Rafhaan on Unsplash | (Representational Image)

According to police, a 45-year-old man was arrested on Thursday for allegedly murdering his 35-year-old live-in partner at her rented house in Ganesh Nagar, West Delhi. According to police, the woman’s 16-year-old daughter was asleep in another room at the time of the incident.

According to the police, the victim, Rekha Rani, had lived in Ganesh Nagar with her daughter for more than 15 years, and the partner, Manpreet Singh, had stayed with them for the past 7-8 years.

According to police, Manpreet gave Rekha’s migraine patient daughter some pills and told her to go to sleep on December 1 at around 6 a.m.

“He informed her that her mother had gone to the market when she became suspicious and inquired about her mother. She called her cousin and went to his Paschim Vihar home. They then called the police when they discovered that their house in Ganesh Nagar was locked. Ravindra Singh Yadav, Special CP (Crime Branch), stated, “The victim’s daughter stated in her statement that she suspected that Manpreet had harmed her mother and that Manpreet and her mother had been fighting over money for some time.”

According to the police, the suspect allegedly stabbed Rekha in the neck and face while she resisted and mutilated a finger on her right hand.

Manpreet moved in with Rekha after meeting her in 2015. He claimed that Rekha stopped letting him visit and talk to his family because, over time, she started to feel insecure. A police officer stated, “He purchased a chopper (cleaver knife) recently to murder her and planned to kill her.”

According to the police, the accused is allegedly involved in six cases in Delhi, including kidnapping for a ransom, an attempt to kill, the arms act, and forgery.

According to the police, the suspect drove to his home village of Nabha in Punjab after killing the woman. Police said the car was found through toll barriers and he was caught using technical investigation.

Source: IndianExpress

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