15072017-TTC-01.qxd 7/15/2017 1:23 AM Page 1 13 established in 1881 saturday, july 15, 2017 late city chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | jammu | srinagar | www.tribuneindia.com | vol. 1 no. 89 | 32 pages | ~5.00 | regd. no. chd/0006/2015-2017 /thetribunechd /thetribunechd Use diplomacy to defuse China standoff: Oppn Raises Amarnath yatra security lapses Simran Sodhi & Mukesh Ranjan Tribune News Service Locals clash with the police during a ‘chakka jam’ to protest the alleged shoddy probe into the rape and murder of a 16-year-old girl at Theog in Shimla on Friday. AMIT KANWAR Public outcry, CBI to probe Shimla rape-murder Pratibha Chauhan Tribune News Service Shimla, July 14 Bowing to public pressure over the alleged shoddy police probe and attempts to shield the “real culprits”, the Himachal Pradesh Government today handed over the rape and murder case of a 16year-old schoolgirl from Kotkhai in Shimla to the Central Bureau of Investigation. The decision came hours after an irate mob gathered near the Theog police station, about 30 km from here, and damaged government vehicles. Calling for a CBI probe amid anti-police sloganeering and hurling of stones, the protesters threatened to set the police station afire if their demand was not met. Shimla ACCUSED FACE MOB FURY Five of the six accused in the case, who were taken to Shimla’s Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital for a check-up, had to face mob fury. People from all walks of life, including women, gathered outside the hospital. Despite the large police presence, the men in khaki had a tough time trying to save the accused from being beaten up. Superintendent of Police DW Negi, too, was manhandled. Even as the public fury kept mounting and National Highway-22 remained blocked, the decision to hand over the case to the CBI was taken only after Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh returned from Kullu in the afternoon. “Keeping in view the sensitivity of the case and to remove Selfie love turns fatal for 2 Gurdaspur girls Ravi Dhaliwal Tribune News Service Gurdaspur, July 14 The love for clicking selfies proved fatal for two girls on a morning stroll, who reportedly drowned in a canal after falling from a bridge. College student Lovepreet Kaur Masih (21) and her friend Nisha (18), a schoolgirl, were clicking selfies when Nisha, who was perched dangerously on the edge of Sathiali bridge, slipped. Eyewitnesses claimed she held on to the arm of Loverpreet Kaur, which proved fatal for both as they fell into the gushing waters of the UBDC canal. A number of villagers gathered at the spot and informed Deputy Commissioner Amit Kumar, who asked the authorities concerned to reduce the flow of water. The SDM was told to supervise the rescue operation, Nisha Lovepreet while a wireless message on the orders of SSP BS Virk ensured the deployment of police personnel at the spot. The incident took place at 5.30 am. Around 30 minutes later, at least six divers were on the job. When they failed to trace the girls by noon, the DC requisitioned divers from the Army from Tibri Cantonment. Several villagers too tried to locate the girls. Those camping at the site said the chances of finding the bodies appeared bleak because of the strong water current. ISSUE BEING POLITICISED: VIRBHADRA The mayhem at Theog and the destruction of public property were politically motivated. Instead of sympathising with the victim’s family, some people are giving a political colour to the incident… The police convoy in which the accused were being brought to Shimla was ambushed by an organised group. Virbhadra Singh, HP CM ❝ On July 4, the Class X student was reportedly offered a lift in a car by one of the accused on her way home from school. Her body later was recovered from a forest area. A Special Investigation Team had yesterday claimed the case had been cracked with the arrest of six youths. The people, however, refused to buy the police theory. Social media went abuzz with allegations of attempts to shield some well-connected persons and also that the crime took place in a house, and not in the forest area as claimed. Doubts were also raised on the alleged involvement of two Nepalese labourers, who did not flee after committing the crime. all doubts, if any, the government has decided to refer the matter to the CBI,” he said. The protesters, however, refused to clear the blockade without proof of the official communication to the central probe agency. The was brought under control only after the Theog Sub-Divisional Magistrate produced a copy of the order. Apart from Theog, people poured onto the streets in Shimla, Kotkhai and Jubbal. There was also a scramble among politicians to hog the limelight and pledge support to the family. While the girl’s uncle stood with the protesters in Theog, the victim’s parents left for Haridwar to perform the minor’s last rites. NEET 2017 exam not to be nullified: SC Explosive found inside UP House New Delhi, July 14 The Supreme Court today refused to “nullify” the National Eligibility-cumEntrance Test (NEET) 2017, saying it would affect over six lakh candidates who have cleared it to join medical and dental courses. A three-judge Bench refused to accept the submission of the counsel appearing for the petitioners, who said three sets of question papers were given to candidates in the exam in Andhra Pradesh. Additional Solicitor General Maninder Singh, appearing for the Central Board of Secondary Education, said besides English and Hindi, the exam was conducted in eight vernacular languages for the first time. “The level of difficulty was the same,” he said. The petitioners argued that the all-India ranking postulates that every candidate gets the same paper. — PTI Lucknow, July 14 In a major security breach, a powerful explosive was discovered inside the Uttar Pradesh Vidhan Sabha, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath informed the House today. Adityanath recommended an investigation by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) into the presence of explosives inside the Assembly, which is currently in session. The House later passed a resolution to hand over the probe to the NIA. Adityanath said on July 12, a day after the Budget was presented, the staff found white powder wrapped in a piece of paper on the floor behind the designated seat of the Leader of the Opposition. A forensic report confirmed it was PETN (Pentaerythritol tetranitrate), a powerful plastic explosive. “It was 150 grams of powder, white in colour and MAN THREATENS TO BLOW UP HOUSE, HELD Lucknow: A university dropout from Deoria has been arrested for allegedly threatening to blow up the Vidhan Sabha on Independence Day. In a telephone call to ADG (Lucknow zone) on July 6, Farhan Ahmad had reportedly threatened to blow up the House. TNS even the dog squad did not detect it,” the CM said. Additional Director General (Law and Order) Anand Kumar later said 150 grams of PETN was not sufficient to cause any explosion. The CM said an attempt had been made to muffle the voice of 22 crore people by jeopardising the lives of 403 MLAs and 100 MLCs. He said he would recommend strict security steps, including possible frisking of members. — TNS Pope tacks sign on his apartment door: ‘No whining’ Vatican City, July 14 If anyone had any doubts how Pope Francis feels about people who always complain, the answer is now tacked to the door of his frugal suite in a Vatican residence: “No whining”. Under the explicit warning, the red-and-white Italian language sign goes on to say that “violators are subject to a syndrome of always feeling like a victim and the consequent reduction of your sense of humour and capacity to solve problems”. The sign is adorned with the international symbol for A placard reading “No whining” is seen on Pope Francis’ room door in this picture posted on the Vatican Insider website. REUTERS ‘no’ — a backslash in a circle. It adds: “The penalty is doubled if the violation takes place in the presence of children. To get the best out of yourself, concentrate on your potential and not on your limitations.” Then the closing zinger: “Stop complaining and take steps to improve your life.” The sign was given to the Pope recently by Italian psychologist and self-help author Salvo Noe. Francis promised Noe he would put it up in his office for a laugh. Francis has had no shortage of complainers in the Vatican and in the Church since his election in 2013. He has tried to steer the 1.2 billion-member Church on a more inclusive and merciful Today’s issue consists of 32 pages, including four-page The Tribune Trends and four-page Bathinda Tribune. path, angering conservatives who say he is sowing doctrinal confusion. One recent episode involved Cardinal Gerhard Mueller, a German whom the Pope removed last month from his post as Vatican doctrinal chief at the end of a five-year term. Mueller, who disagrees with the Pope on a number of issues, apparently expected his mandate to be renewed automatically. Mueller later told a German newspaper that the way he was treated was “unacceptable”. — Reuters New Delhi, July 14 External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh today briefed Opposition members on the government’s stand on China and the situation in Jammu and Kashmir. The Opposition in turn asked the government to deescalate the situation in the Doklam region using diplomatic channels, while pointing out security lapses with regards to the terror attack on the Amarnath yatris in Jammu and Kashmir. The prime agenda of the meeting, which lasted a little over three hours, was to brief the Opposition ahead of the monsoon session of Parliament that begins on Monday. It was also attended by Defence Minister Arun Jaitley, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar and National Security Adviser Ajit Doval. Emerging out of the meeting, ruling NDA ally and LJP leader Ram Vilas Paswan said leaders cutting across party lines felt there should be no compromise on integrity and national security. Senior Congress leader Anand Sharma told The Tribune that the Congress made it clear that the security of the country was paramount. He said it wasn’t a question of satisfaction or not, but the fact that the government had now taken the Opposition on board. It is learnt that Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar informed the leaders that China was trying to encroach on India’s territories, which had so far been thwarted by the Indian forces. Jaishankar argued that China was violating the agreed positions on the border and India was protecting not only its own interest but also that of Bhutan. Sources said the Opposition leaders were informed that when Doval travels to China later this month, he will take up the matter in an attempt to deescalate the situation. JD-U leader KC Tyagi, while talking to The Tribune, said the government gave two presentations — one on China and the other on the Amarnath yatra attack. Tyagi said: “The government gave us its view on the Doklam standoff. Later, the Opposition leaders suggested to the government that it should take appropriate measures to de-escalate tension on the border by using appropriate tools.” The official spokesperson for MEA said: “All parties appreciated the briefing. All participants expressed strong support for India’s approach and also for the need for national security.” The spokesperson reiterated the fact that there was “widespread appreciation” of the Astana meet that “differences should not be allowed to become disputes” between the two nations. The meeting was attended by Ghulam Nabi Azad, Mallikarjun Kharge (both Congress), Sitaram Yechury (CPM), Mulayam Singh Yadav (SP), Tariq Anwar (NCP), Sharad Yadav, KC Tyagi (JD-U) and Derek O’Brien (TMC), among others. SC sets up CBI SIT to probe Manipur fake encounters New Delhi, July 14 In a first, the Supreme Court today set up a special investigating team (SIT) of five CBI officers and ordered registration of an FIR and a probe into the extra-judicial killings and fake encounters by the Army, Assam Rifles and police in insurgency-hit Manipur. The apex court directed the CBI director to nominate a team within two weeks, which will lodge FIRs and complete the investigation by December 31. Calling upon states to adhere to the NHRC guidelines, the Bench said “it is not as if the dignity of only living persons needs to be respected, even the dignity of the dead must be given due respect”. The court, which is hearing a PIL for a probe into 1,528 extra-judicial killings, ordered registration of FIRs in 81 cases, including 32 cases probed by a Commission of Inquiry, 32 cases investigated by judicial inquiries and high courts, 11 cases in which compensation has been awarded by NHRC and six cases probed by the commission headed by former Supreme Court judge Justice Santosh Hegde. On July 8 last year, the apex court had said the situation in Manipur has “never been one of war” and killing of citizens on suspicion that they are the “enemy” gravely endangers democracy. It had held that the use of “excessive force” by the armed forces or police was not permissible in ‘disturbed areas’ under the draconian AFSPA. The apex court, which had directed a thorough probe into the alleged fake encounter killings, maintained that inquest was needed to “know the truth” in Manipur. — PTI
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