24042018-TTC-01.qxd 24-04-2018 01:27 Page 1 13 established in 1881 tuesday,april 24, 2018 chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | jammu | srinagar | www.tribuneindia.com | vol. 2 no. 112 | 16 pages | ~4.50 | regd. no. chd/0006/2018-2020 /thetribunechd Spell out stand on Section 377, SC tells Centre New Delhi, April 23 The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Centre to spell out its stand on a petition seeking to declare unconstitutional Section 377 of the IPC that criminalises homosexual activities between consenting adults. Asking the Centre to respond within a week to Lalit Suri hospitality group head Kesav Suri’s petition, a Bench headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra ordered tagging of the petition with other petitions on the issue already referred to a Constitution Bench. The top court is already seized of similar pleas petitions filed by celebrities such as dancer NS Johar, chef Ritu Dalmia and another hotelier, Aman Nath, against Section 377. Suri submitted that being part of the lesbian, gays, bisexual, transgender and queer community, he has suffered mentally and been stigmatised on account of his sexual orientation, at a personal and professional front. — TNS Prince William, Kate’s third child a boy London: Kate, the wife of Prince William, gave birth to a boy at a hospital in London on Monday, the third child for the British royal couple and now fifth in line to the throne. Kensington Palace said the baby was born at 1001 GMT and weighs 3.8 kg. William was present for the birth at St Mary’s Hospital in west London. PAGE 16 Pak shells forward areas in Poonch Jammu: Pakistani troops on Monday targeted forward posts and villages along the LoC in Poonch district of J&K in violation of the ceasefire agreement, an official said. “Pakistan army initiated unprovoked and indiscriminate firing of small arms, automatics and mortars from 1730 hours in the Krishnaghati sector,” the official said. PTI Dreaded gangster shot dead in Noida Gurugram: Gangster Balraj Bhati, operating in Haryana, UP, Delhi and Rajasthan for almost seven years, was gunned down by a Haryana and UP police team in Noida on Monday. Considered righthand man of jailed gangster Sunder Bhati, Balraj carried a reward of ~2.5 lakh on his head. INSIDE /thetribunechd V-P no to impeachment Badge of honour Allegations against CJI neither tenable nor admissible: Naidu Tribune News Service President Ram Nath Kovind presents Shaurya Chakra to Lance Naik Narender Singh during the Defence Investiture Ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi on Monday. PTI Won’t object to Manu’s release: Jessica’s sister Family hopes for son’s return soon Naveen S Garewal Tribune News Service Chandigarh/Gurugram,April 23 Siddhartha Vashishta’s family is looking forward to seeing their son back home after 15 years in jail. Sources close to the family said that Siddhartha alias Manu Sharma had completed 15 years without remissions and was entitled to be released, like other convicts as per the jail manual. At the same time they were happy that Sabrina Lall, sister of model Jessica Lall, who was shot dead by Manu, had given a “no objection” to the jail authorities. On March 5, 2018, Sabrina wrote to Welfare Officer, Central Jail No 2, Tihar, that she had no objection to Manu’s release after serving a 15-year term “during which period, I am told, he has been doing good work for charity and helping inmates, which I feel is reflection of reforms... I would like to state I have no objection to his release, owing to the fact that he has spent 15 years in jail”. Jessica’s sister went public through the media, saying: “In my mind, I have forgiven him. It will be like a catharsis to forgive and move on. I also need to get on with my life. I don’t want to hold on to any ❝ It’s not so much about forgiveness but it’s about letting go of a burden, something from which I have moved on. For me, it’s about taking a load off me Sabrina Lall, JESSICA’S SISTER more anger or hurt. I feel that he has served his sentence.” The letter was in response to a communication from the jail authorities regarding financial assistance from the victim’s welfare fund, which Sabrina declined. “I requested them to give it to someone more needy,” she told the media, rubbishing claims of a “settlement.” A source said the jail term was aimed at reformation of the convict and the jail authorities had acknowledged the social work done by Manu, who ran an NGO in jail for the benefit of other convicts. Continued on page 7 AFSPAgoesin Meghalaya,partly inArunachal New Delhi, April 23 The AFSPA has been removed completely from Meghalaya and its area of operation in Arunachal Pradesh has been restricted to three police stations bordering Assam and three districts neighbouring Myanmar, officials said on Monday. The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, which empowers security forces to conduct operations, arrest anyone anywhere without prior notice, has been removed from all areas of Meghalaya from March 31. The decision has been taken due to a significant improvement in security situation in the state, a Home Ministry official said. In Arunachal Pradesh, areas under the controversial Act have been reduced from 16 police stations areas bordering Assam to eight, besides Tirap, Changlang and Longding districts, the official said. There have been demands from various organisations in the North-East as well as in Jammu and Kashmir for repealing the Act, which, they say, gives “sweeping powers” to the security forces to act against “civilians”. The AFSPA has been in force in Nagaland for several decades and in Assam from early 1990s. — PTI Illegal, ill-advised, hasty step; will move SC against it: Cong Tribune News Service New Delhi, April 23 Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu on Monday rejected the impeachment motion submitted by Congress-led Opposition seeking removal of Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra on five grounds of “misbehaviour”. “I am of the firm opinion that the notice of motion does not deserve to be admitted,” the Vice President, also the RS Chairman, said in a pointby-point appraisal of allegations against CJI Misra in the April 20 motion signed by 64 Opposition members. He said “in absence of credible and verifiable information” it would be an “inappropriate and irresponsible act to accept statements which have little empirical basis” and that he was “satisfied that admission of this notice of motion is neither desirable nor proper”. Naidu said he reached the conclusion after carefully examining material contained in notice, relevant provisions of the Constitution of India, statutory provisions pertaining to the removal of judges and inputs from legal luminaries and constitutional experts. “Going through the five allegations mentioned in the notice, I am of the view that they are neither tenable nor admissible. The allegations emerging from the present case have a serious tendency of undermining the independence of judiciary, which is the basic tenet of the Con- New Delhi, April 23 The Congress on Monday said it would file a petition in the Supreme Court challenging Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu’s order rejecting the impeachment notice. Senior Congress leader and Rajya Sabha MP Kapil Sibal said: “We will certainly file a petition in the Supreme Court and would want the CJI to not take any decision with respect to it, be it listing or anything else, we’ll accept whatever the SC decides.” Sibal said he (Naidu) shouldn’t have disposed of it without constituting an inquiry committee. “The Chairman’s order says the charges are unverifiable. How can you verify without conducting an inquiry,” Sibal asked. Describing Naidu’s move as “unprecedented, illegal, illadvised and hasty”, the Congress leader stressed that “never before in India’s history” had a motion moved by MPs been dismissed at the preliminary stage. As per Article 124 (4) of the Indian Constitution, “A Judge of the Supreme Court shall not be removed from his office except by an order of the President passed after an address by each House of Parliament supported by a majority of the total membership of that House and by a majority of not less than twothirds of the members of that ❝ In the absence of credible and verifiable information which gives an indication of ‘misbehaviour’ or ‘incapacity’, it would be an inappropriate and irresponsible act to accept statements which have little empirical basis M Venkaiah Naidu, RS CHAIRMAN stitution of India,” he said. Naidu said Members of Parliament who presented the petition were “unsure of their own case”. “Phrases they used themselves indicate a mere suspicion, a conjecture or an assumption. The same certainly does not constitute proof ‘beyond reasonable doubt’, which is required to make out a case of ‘proved misbehaviour’ under Article 124 (4),” he said in a 10-page reply. “Conversations between third parties with dubious credentials, which have been extensively relied upon, cannot themselves constitute any material evidence against the holder of the office of the Chief Justice of India,” he said. Continued on page 7 has right to reject: govt p7 there ❝ Obviouslyhurry. Iwas some tearing don’t think momentous matters like this should be disposed of in this fashion. Remember as MPs it is our privilege to move the motion. You can’t boot the privilege motion in this fashion Kapil Sibal, CONG LEADER House present and voting has been presented to the President in the same session for such removal on the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity.” Sibal said it seemed the government was very keen that this (charge made in the petition) must not be allowed to be inquired into. “Maybe they have information that the CBI has information, maybe by scuttling the inquiry they don’t want a lot of information to come on record. It puts the judicial system in jeopardy,” he said. He wondered what the hurry was to reject the motion that had valid signatures of 64 MPs. The order had shattered the confidence of the people and jeopardised the legal system, he added. Modi, Xi to discuss US protectionism Wuhan meet: Beijing says world will hear ‘very positive voices’ Beijing, April 23 China on Monday said President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi will discuss the threat of rising protectionism and the unprecedented changes in the world in the past 100 years at their summit in Wuhan this week and the world will hear “very positive voices”. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi on Sunday announced that President Xi and PM Modi would hold an informal summit in the central Chinese city of Wuhan on April 27-28 to step up bilateral relations and discuss global issues of common concern. During the meeting, the two leaders will discuss the SITHARAMAN IN CHINA TOO Beijing: Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman arrived in China on Monday to attend a preparatory meeting related to upcoming summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO). Sitharaman is likely to meet a number of Chinese leaders. She will attend the SCO defence ministers’ meeting on Tuesday. changes that have taken place and which are unprecedented in the past 100 years to exchange views on the strategic overarching long-term issues concerning bilateral ties, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said. This will bring positive influence to regional and world peace, stability and development and bring more benefits to the people of both countries, Lu said. As to the background against which this meeting will be held, Lu said: “I believe you are also clear that the world is now faced with rampant unilateralism as well as the rising protectionism in the process of globalisation. All these new trends in the world have to be closely followed and debated. “Against such backdrop, China and India have a lot to discuss. We are newly emerging markets as well as developing countries with big population. So we believe the two countries will continue to uphold the globalisation so that it is more inclusive. So we have a lot of shared interests, concerns and positions,” the spokesman said. At Wuhan, the two leaders will “exchange views on overarching long-term strategic issues as well as the latest trends of the world so that the world will develop in a more stable way,” Lu said. “I cannot make a prejudgement ahead of the meeting on what will actually be discussed at the Wuhan meeting. What I said is a general background. So it is sure that the two leaders will exchange views on these issues. But I believe you will see and hear very positive voices,” he said. — PTI edit: towards entente cordiale related report back page 65.9% clear PSEB Class XII exam, Ludhiana girl topper Pass percentage in HIMANSHU MAHAJAN Akash Ghai STREAM-WISE PASS PERCENTAGE Tribune News Service Mohali, April 23 Pooja Joshi (humanities), a student of Teja Singh Swatantar Memorial Senior Secondary School, Ludhiana, topped the Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) Class XII exams, result of which was declared on Monday. She scored 98 per cent marks. Pooja’s schoolmate Vivek Rajput of the science stream was second with 97.55 per cent marks while commerce student Jasnoor Kaur of Dashmesh Public Girls Senior Secondary School, Badal, Muktsar Sahib, was third with 97.33 per cent marks. In the sports group, it were the girls who grabbed the top three positions. State-level baseball player Prachi Gaur of BCM Senior Senior Sec- COMMERCE REGULAR 85.35% STUDENTS APPEARED PASSED HUMANITIES REGULAR 68.46% STUDENTS APPEARED PASSED SCIENCE REGULAR 58.88% STUDENTS APPEARED PASSED OPEN SCHOOL 84.95% OPEN 50.28% 31,364 26,643 65.11% OPEN 40.22% 2,12,945 1,38,643 58.79% OPEN 18.80% 55,976 32,907 4.55% 132 6 Topper Pooja Joshi celebrates with her classmates at Teja Singh Swatantar school at Shimlapuri, Ludhiana. STUDENTS APPEARED PASSED ondary School, Ludhiana, bagged the top spot, scoring cent per cent marks. Her classmate Pushwinder Kaur, was placed third with 99.56 per cent marks. As both Prachi and Pushwinder had equal marks, the younger of a state-level softball player, who also scored cent per cent marks, was declared second. Mandeep Kaur, a national- level kabaddi player and a student of Sant Mohan Das Memorial Senior Secondary School, Kot Sukhia, Faridkot, the two was declared the topper. The total pass percentage was 65.97 per cent as against 62.36 per cent last year. The result declared did not include vocational, National Skill Qualification Framework and re-exam students, whose number stands at 18,165 (14,314 vocational and NSQF and 3,851 reexam). The result of these students is yet to be compiled and is likely to be declared by May 15, said Manohar Kant Kalohia, the school board chairman. Therefore, the overall merit list had not been prepared. “We gave up to 5 per cent grace marks to students on the verge of failing. This decision was taken after much deliberation,” Kalohia said, adding that the Class X result would be out within 10 days. border dists slips Sanjeev Singh Bariana Tribune News Service Chandigarh, April 23 More than 69 per cent candidates studying in government schools passed the PSEB exams against 66 per cent in private schools. The result of 18,000 students in the vocational streams has yet to be declared. These courses are only available in government schools. A total of 2,74,532 regular candidates appeared in the board exam this time, of whom 1,87,828 passed. Among the 25,885 candidates who appeared in the ‘open’ category, as many as 10,371 were successful. Schools in border districts performed poorly. There had been reports of mass copying in these areas. Amritsar, which had topped the overall merit list last year (71 per cent), was placed on the 19th spot this year with a pass percentage of just 51. Pathankot, which had last year recorded a pass percentage of 64, was ranked 48. Gurdaspur recorded a 47 per cent success rate as against 76 per cent last year. The overall percentage in Tarn Taran district, where most centres were found engaged in mass copying, had a pass percentage of 31against 72 last year. The pass percentage in Malwa was impressive — Muktsar (80 per cent), Mansa and Ludhiana (79 per cent), Bathinda (77 per cent) and Sangrur (77 per cent).
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