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Since 1st March, 1999
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Nation at a Glance

Andhra remission order gets SC nod

New Delhi (PTI): The Supreme Court has upheld a decision of the Andhra Pradesh governor not to remit sentences of those punished for crimes against women while passing a general order reducing imprisonment period of convicts on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of India becoming a republic.

A bench of Justices Doraiswamy Raju and H.K. Sema, in a recent judgment, upheld the validity of the governor’s order in January 2000 to remit sentences of prisoners convicted of certain offences.

One S. Satyanarayana, who was convicted in a dowry harassment case, had challenged the decision of the government not to remit his sentence. Rejecting his arguments, Justice Raju said the types of offences classified under the governor’s order show that “the real object is to ensure that those who prey on community and violate fundamental values of mankind, society and national interest should not get undeserved benefit”.

ejecting that the order was violative of Article 14 of the Constitution guaranteeing the right to equality, he said: “The classification therefore sounds just, reasonable, proper and necessitated in the larger interests of the society and greater public interest.”

The bench said the classification made by the Andhra Pradesh government to keep away convicts for crimes against women from the benefit of remission could not be said to be violating any reasonable principle or concept of law.

Karachi call creates flutter

New Delhi: A Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) employee was questioned on Thursday and let off by Delhi police after it emerged that he had made telephone calls to Pakistan, reports our special correspondent.

Shariq Usmani, who is associated with the DRDO’s Indian Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences, was detained but let off when he told police during investigation that he had telephoned his uncle in Karachi.

Usmani was released since he had done nothing illegal, police sources said.

Usmani, who belongs to Deoband in Uttar Pradesh, was picked up from a house in Timarpur in north Delhi on Wednesday night after police received information that he had made a few calls to Karachi on Monday, sources said.

With security beefed up in the capital in the run-up to Independence Day, police wanted to take no chances. Especially since Usmani is currently doing a project with the nuclear medicine wing. This made police personnel and intelligence agencies interrogate Usmani at length.

SC clears Laloo travel

New delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday directed the CBI’s Patna unit to hand over Laloo Prasad Yadav’s passport for renewal, reports our legal correspondent.

A bench of Justices S.. Variava, P. Venkatarama Reddi and Ashok Bhan also asked the Rashtriya Janata Dal chief to give an undertaking that he would not contest witnesses who depose in the fodder-scam trial in his absence. Jharkhand High Court had on Wednesday ordered the passport’s release and asked Laloo Prasad to surrender it on his return from a “confidence building” media conference in Pakistan on Saturday.

Woman murdered

Akola (PTI): The in-laws of a pregnant woman strangulated her to death on Wednesday, police said. Seema Ganesh Sharma was beaten by her in-laws before being strangulated. Police have arrested Sharma’s husband and mother-in-law.

Sunanda custody

Surat (PTI): A court has rejected the revision application filed by Umra police seeking a 14-day custody of Sunanda Shetty, mother of actress Shilpa Shetty and one of the accused in an alleged extortion case. However, Sunanda has been asked to be present for interrogation.

Excavation ends

lucknow (PTI): Curtains came down on Thursday on the nearly five-month excavation carried out by the Archaeological Survey of India in Ayodhya to ascertain if a temple existed there. The digging was carried out by a team of ASI experts following a directive from Allahabad High Court. The team is busy examining about 1,350 small and big articles which the excavation has thrown up. Some articles have been sent to laboratories in Lucknow and Dehra Doon for carbon-dating analysis.

Assault arrests

Pondicherry (PTI): Six members of the non-teaching staff association of Pondicherry university were arrested for allegedly assaulting the varsity’s outgoing vice-chancellor, police said. V.T. Patil was about to get into his car after leaving office on Wednesday when he was allegedly assaulted by the six.


Roots en route, an exhibition examining the impact of Indo-UK links on Indian artists, will be held in Mumbai from August 12. The exhibition is being organised by the British Council of India in collaboration with Sakshi art gallery.

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