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PM Modi summons top CBI officers to resolve conflict: Sources

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New Delhi | Amid of the tussle between the top officials of the CBI, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has summoned Rakesh Asthana and Alok Verma.

The development has come after the CBI filed an FIR against its special director Rakesh Asthana for taking bribes to provide relief to businessman being investigated by him in a case involving meat exporter Moin Qureshi.  The FIR was filed on the claims of Sathish Sana, a Hyderabad-based businessman investigated in connection with meat exporter Moin Qureshi, who is accused of money-laundering.

Asthana in response wrote a letter to the Cabinet Secretary and Central Vigilance Commission alleging irregularities and corruption charges against CBI Director Alok Verma. Asthana alleged that the businessman had paid CBI Director Alok Verma Rs 2 crore to get relief in the case.

Various opposition leader criticised PM Modi for his silence over the cold war between the CBI officials. Congress leader and former Union Minister Kapil Sibal wrote on Twitter, “Can people have faith in CBI when CBI has no faith in it’s Special Director accused of corruption by the CBI itself? CBI functions under the Department of Personnel and Training (DOPT) of which the minister in charge is PM. Why is PM silent?”


Attacking PM Modi, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said, “During the Congress rule the Supreme Court had termed the CBI a caged parrot, Modi govt has surpassed the Cong record and in its greed to victimise political opponents, Modi govt has turned the CBI into a national disgrace.”

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Rajasthan High Court asks Robert Vadra and his mother to appear before ED on 12th February

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The Rajasthan High Court on Monday asked Robert Vadra along with his partners in the Skyline Hospitality Limited, including his mother Maureen Vadra to appear before the Enforcement Directorate on 12th February to record their responses to the allegations of money laundering by the firm.

A bench from the Jodhpur high court gave this direction after ejecting its earlier order that averted the agency from taking any forcible action against Vadra and others.

A bench consisting of Justice P S Bhati, while asking Vadra and others to appear before the ED, however, refused to vacate the stay on their arrest and refused any kind of liberty to the ED to take them into custody.

Justice Bhati further gave a clarification that if the need be, the Enforcement Directorate will have to move the court separately to seek permission for arresting them.

Rajdeep Rastogi, the solicitor general, who is appearing for the ED, stated it to the bench that the agency has already started off an inquiry against the owners and the partners of Skylight Hospitality Limited on a complaint of money laundering against the company.

Rastogi stated, “The company moved the court against this inquiry and obtained an order that no coercive action would be taken against them during the investigation”.

The Enforcement Directorate then challenged the court seeking vacation of this order on the account that neither an FIR was lodged in the matter nor any accused was named in the case.

Rastogi argued in the court, “It is just a fact-finding inquiry which is at an initial stage, so the court should not intervene in the matter at this stage”.

Admitting the arguments of the solicitor general, the court removed the “No Coercive Action” clause from its earlier order.

Based on a mutual consent of the lawyers from both the sides, the bench ordered owner and partners of the firms, including Vadra and his mother to appear before the ED and cooperate with the agency in the inquiry.

 

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Legal perspective being sought for quotas for upper castes in Bihar: Nitish Kumar

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Nitish Kumar, the Bihar chief minister today on Monday declared his government will implement quotas for the economically-backward among the unreserved category once they get a legal perspective concerning the suitable modalities.

Nitish Kumar stated that a legal perspective was being sought as to whether the new quotas, which have been brought forth by way of a recent constitutional amendment and are in addition to the existing reservations, could be introduced in the state through an executive order or an Act passed in the legislature.

He also stated that we are bound by the top court judgement, which placed a cap of 50 percent on the quotas for the educationally and socially backward, but added that he is in the support of the demand for increasing the limit to make reservations proportionate to the population of the respective caste groups.

He added, “But opposition parties which are voicing the demand have no clue as to how to go about it. In my view, there should be a fresh tally wherein the separate populations of social segments like SCs, STs and OBCs is taken into account. Based on its report, the nation can move towards ensuring proportional representation for various castes”.

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PM Modi to inaugurate Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas convention in Varanasi on Tuesday

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday will inaugurate the 15th convention of the Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas in his parliamentary constituency of Varanasi.

It is for the first time that the three-day long convention is being organized from 21st January to 23rd January in place of 9th January to permit the participants for visiting the Kumbh Mela in Allahabad and attend the parade of Republic Day here.

A statement from the Prime Minister’s office stated that the theme of the convention for this year is ‘role of the Indian diaspora in building new India’.

The chief guest of the convention will be Prime Minister of Mauritius Pravind Jugnauth, whereas a member of Parliament of Norway, Himanshu Gulati will be the special guest. Further, member of Parliament of New Zealand, Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, will be the guest of honour.

The decision to celebrate the Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas was taken by the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and the first event was celebrated on 9th January 2003 in Varanasi.

As a matter of fact, January 9 was picked to be the day for the celebration of Pravasi Bharatiya since it was this day in the year 1915 that Mahatma Gandhi had returned from South Africa to India.

The Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas is now celebrated once in every two years and gives a platform to the Indian community overseas for engaging with the government and reconnecting with their roots said the statement.

Pravasi Bharatiya Sammaan, is discussed on the selected overseas Indians for their imperative contributions to different spheres both abroad and in India.

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