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Alert to states on fast-track courts

New Delhi (PTI): The Supreme Court has warned state governments which have not set up the required number of fast-track courts despite taking full central grants, saying they should “either do it (set up the courts) or face consequences”, reports our legal correspondent.

A bench of Chief Justice V.. Khare and Justice S.B. Sinha gave six weeks to the governments of Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa and Bengal and the respective high courts to make the required number of fast-track courts functional.

he bench said: “It is a rather sad state of affairs where the state governments are blaming the high courts and the high courts are blaming the states.” Both the state governments and the high courts were jointly responsible for setting up the required number of fast-track courts, the bench said, while seeking detailed affidavits from the governments and the high courts on the work done so far and the rate of disposal of cases by the existing fast-track courts.

The bench asked solicitor-general Kirit . Raval to get the response of the Centre on an application filed by Rajasthan High Court posing a query as to who would bear the running costs of these courts. Rajasthan is one of the few states which has substantially met the target of setting up fast-track courts.

Sex workers protest eviction

New Delhi: The eviction of sex workers from their rooms in a red-light area has revived the debate on whether prostitution should be legalised, reports our special correspondent.

Delhi police evicted nearly 100 prostitutes under the Immoral Traffic Prevention Act, which empowers authorities to seal rooms in red-light areas from which the women are arrested. This means prostitutes and their children suddenly find themselves with no shelter or means of earning a livelihood.

peaking to the media, the evicted sex workers said on Monday: “We have been thrown out on the streets. All we were trying to do is earn a living and raise our children.”

n activist of Shakti Vahini, a non-governmental organisation which works with prostitutes, said: “The case goes back nearly two years ago and the conviction has come now, throwing these women out on the streets.”

Court stick for NCP leader

New Delhi: The Supreme Court has asked the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief in Chhattisgarh, V.C. Shukla, to amend his petition alleging harassment of party workers by chief minister Ajit Jogi, reports our legal correspondent.

bench of Chief Justice V.. Khare and Justice S.B. Sinha said the drafting of the petition seemed like “washing of dirty linen” in the courts. Taking exception to the manner in which numerous charges were levelled against Jogi, the bench told Shukla’s counsel: “What kind of petition is this' It is like a chargesheet!”

Film fest protest

Mumbai: One hundred and seventy five independent filmmakers have come together to boycott the Mumbai International Film Festival (MIFF), 2004, to protest against the festival’s stipulation that films by directors of Indian origin be passed by the censor board first.

AMU chancellor

Aligarh (PTI): Former Chief Justice of India A.M. Ahmadi has been appointed the chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University.

Kanshi Ram ill

Hyderabad: Bahujan Samaj Party president Kanshi Ram suffered a brain stroke on Monday and was admitted to a hospital here, reports our special correspondent. His condition is “stable” but he has “difficulty in speech”. Kanshi Ram suffered the cerebral stroke on waking up from sleep. He was on a Hyderabad-bound train.

Temple fracas

Akola (PTI): There was tension for some hours near an under-construction Hanuman temple after building and communication department officials tried to stop work saying the temple was being built on the department’s land. The employees, along with the police, reached the spot on Sunday to remove the “encroachment” when residents stormed the site and obstructed the move.

Cong activist shot

Raipur (PTI): Tension prevailed in Ambikapur in Sarguja after a contractor and Congress activist was shot dead by two motorcycle-borne assailants on Sunday.

Tick

Over 700 youths from across the country will participate in a festival at Patnitop on the Srinagar-Jammu National Highway from September 22. It is being organised by the department of youth services and sports and the Patnitop Development Authority.


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