Gujarat- Dalit woman sarpanch who ‘stands against’ predecessors sent to jail #Vaw


Parimal Dabhi : Lakhvad (Mehsana), Thu Apr 18 2013, IE
MehsanaThe main entrance of Lakhvad village, around 3-4 kilometres from Mehsana.

A dalit woman sarpanch from Lakhvad village of Mehsana district, Kamla Makwana, her husband, their son and two others were arrested late Tuesday on the basis of a recent complaint of breach of trust and criminal intimidation lodged by former deputy sarpanch Ratilal Patel. They were later sent to Mehsana district jail after a local magisterial court rejected their bail petitions.She had reportedly filed multiple complaints of harassment against her predecessor from locally dominant Patel community, Prahlad Patel, and his then deputy, Ratilal Patel. Both Ratilal and Prahlad allegedly didn’t want to let Kamla function as the village Sarpanch.

Following the arrest, the jailed woman sarpanch now wants to resign after getting fed up of the harassment she has been subjected to by her predecessors, sources said.

Kamla was elected as the sarpanch of Lakhvad Gram Panchayat in January last year under the Gujarat government’s Samras Yojna where instead of electing, villagers are selecting the sarpanch and other members of the gram panchayat. However, she allegedly started facing harassment at the behest of Prahald who was the Sarpanch of the village before her.

She made a number of complaints to different authorities like the district development officer, state Human Rights Commission and local police. The complaints include evidence to prove that Prahlad had been misusing the old letterheads of the gram panchayat and issuing various certificates to the villagers while forging Kamla’s signature. She also lodged two complaints against Prahald and Ratilal under the provisions of the Scheduled Castes & Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

However, on April 3, Ratilal Patel, who was deputy sarpanch in the village when Prahald was sarpanch, lodged a criminal complaint against Kamla, her husband Kachra Makwana, son Bharat, and two friends — Bharat Patel and Ramila Patel — with Mehsana taluka police station.

According to the complaint, the Makwanas wanted to get loan of Rs 1.80 lakh from the Scheduled Caste Development Corporation to buy a rickshaw in 2004. And Ratilal — under the recommendation of Bharat Patel and Ramila Patel — had become a guarantor for the same on the basis of one of his land pieces. He alleges that the Makwanas assured him of paying regular instalments for the loan.

However, the Makwanas alleges Ratilal did not pay the instalments for the loan and in 2013 when he asked them to pay it so that the government dues on his land could be cleared, they allegedly threatened him and did not pay the amount. Ratilal has accused the Makwanas and Patels of breach of trust, criminal intimidation and abetment.

On Tuesday, Sub-Inspector of Mehsana taluka police station, D K Rathod, reportedly asked the five to get their statements recorded in the case and when they went to police, the five were arrested and produced before a magisterial court. Immediately, their advocate, Jayanti Parmar, moved bail petitions. However, Parmar said the petitions were rejected, following which they were sent to Mehsana district jail.

Kamla’s younger son, Manoj (22), and his wife Sonal, are now the only members of the family out. “This entire case has been fabricated to harass my mother as she did not agree to be a puppet in the hands of Prahlad Patel after being elected Sarpanch. The entire state machinery of Mehsana is working against us at the behest of Prahlad who openly boasts closeness to some top politicians in the Gujarat government,” Manoj said.

However, Ratilal denied the allegations and said, “I had mortgaged my land to the Scheduled Caste Development Corporation for this family to buy a rickshaw. They did not pay the instalments of the loan for nine years. And if they do not pay the instalment, it is possible that my land is auctioned by the state government. I asked them repeatedly to pay the amount and when they did not do so, I had to file the complaint.”

The investigation officer in the case, S I Rathod, said the police have acted completely on the merits of the case. Manoj met his mother in jail Wednesday. “She is very disturbed and has decided to resign from the post. She told me that it is better to live a peaceful life than to indulge in public life,” he said.

 

#Mumbai- Special cell for crimes against women to finally take off on #Womensday


S Ahmed Ali TNN

Mumbai: The Mumbai police’s crime against women cell (CAWC) will start functioning from Friday. The special cell will probe cases of rape, molestation, dowry and other atrocities against women. TOI was the first to report on the state’s initiative to start a separate investigation wing to probe cases of crimes against women.
While the state government had decided to set up the cell in January, the idea remained only on paper. On Wednesday, TOI reported that the cell had not been set up even 40 days after the proposal was cleared.
Home minister R R Patil will officially announce the formation of the cell at a function at the Gateway on Friday. The first-ofits-kind crime detection cell for women will be headed by a DCP.
“DCP Sharda Raut, who currently holds the charge of the police HQ, will hold the additional charge of this cell till we find an appropriate officer to lead it,” said a source.
The cell will be monitored by the joint commissioner of police (crime). It will have one DCP, two assistant commissioners of police, six police inspectors andtwo dozen police constables. The total strength of the CAWC will be 65. Police inspectors Sangita Patil and Neeta Phadke are the women officers selected to the cell. “The officers of this cell will be specially trained to tackle crime against women,” said Addl CP (crime) Niket Kaushik.
The functioning of the CAWC, which will have two units, will be similar to that of other crime branch units, which conduct parallel probes into major crimes in the city. “While one unit will probe cases of rape, kidnapping, molestation and harassment, the other unit will investigate cases like dowry and harassment by in-laws,” said JCP (crime) Himanshu Roy.
The CAWC will have its office in the upcoming building at the police HQ. Till then, it will operate out of the old administrative building.
FAIR PLAY FOR FAIR PROBE 
The first-of-its-kind crime detection cell for women will be headed by a deputy commissioner of police. It will have two units
The functioning of the cell will be monitored by the joint commissioner of police (crime)
It will have one DCP, two assistant commissioners of police, six police inspectors and two dozen police constables
The total strength of the special unit, which will comprise mostly women, will be 65

 

#Tamilnadu mode of benefit transfer without #aadhaar number proves effective- #UID


State mode of benefit transfer proves effective
T. RAMAKRISHNAN, The Hindu
Major difference is that it is not linked to Aadhaar numbers
A beneficiary operating a biometric smart card machine at Samuthiram in Tiruchi on Friday.Collector Jayashree Muralidharan and, Chief Regional Manager, IOB, R. Krishnamurthy (second from right), are in the picture.— PHOTO:R.M. RAJARATHINAM
Even as the Union government gears itself to launch the scheme of direct benefits transfer (DBT) in 51 districts across the country on New Year’s Day, Tamil Nadu, by ensuring the transfer of social security to about 5.63 lakh rural beneficiaries every month in 31 districts, it has shown that its variant of DBT is workable.
The only major difference between the Central scheme and the State government’s is that the transfer is not linked to the beneficiaries having Aadhaar numbers. Otherwise, both appear to be identical.
The beneficiaries of the social security schemes have to open basic savings bank accounts. Every month, business correspondents, appointed by the banks, go to the places of beneficiaries, carrying hand-held point of service (POS) equipment with printers and biometric authentication devices. On confirmation of biometric authentication of the beneficiaries, the pension is disbursed.
Under eight social security schemes including three Central schemes, 29.87 lakh beneficiaries in Tamil Nadu receive monthly pension of Rs. 1,000. Traditionally, they have been receiving the pension through postal money order.
The initial phase focuses on 6.53 lakh beneficiaries in 4,479 villages of 31 districts with the stipulation of covering villages having population of over 2,000.
As on November 30, the coverage was 5.63 lakh beneficiaries in about 4,100 villages. An official of the Revenue department, the implementing agency, says the remaining beneficiaries will be covered shortly.
In the second phase, villages having population in the range of 1,000 to 2,000 will be covered, and the third and final phase pertains to all other villages and urban areas. The present plan of the State government is complete the two phases in six months.
Reports from various districts indicate that the beneficiaries prefer the new mode of payment to the old system.
A senior government official says that the integration of Aadhar/UIDAI data with that of beneficiaries will be carried out after the National Population Register (NPR) programme is completed in the State which is expected by June 30, 2013.
On assumption of office in May 2011, the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam government took two decisions concerning the social security schemes. It not only increased the amount of pension from Rs. 500 to Rs. 1,000 but also decided to disburse it through banks in a phased manner.
In respect of Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme too, the State government has decided to make payment through banks in five districts – Kancheepuram, Tiruvallur, Erode, Tirupur and Kanyakumari, from January, according to an official release issued by the State Level Bankers’ Committee. In these districts, bank accounts for 6.1 lakh beneficiaries have been opened.

 

Delhi University to get biometric attendance system by January 2013


By NEHA PUSHKARNA

PUBLISHED: 21:24 GMT, 4 November 2012 | UPDATED: 21:25 GMT, 4 November 2012

Teachers may have mixed views, but Delhi University is going to introduce a biometric system for recording their attendance within the next two months.

The executive council on Saturday ‘authorised’ the vice-chancellor to take appropriate steps regarding the long-standing issue of teachers’ attendance in colleges and departments.

Now with a go-ahead from university’s highest decision-making body, the vice-chancellor is planning to usher in the new system by January.

DUTA members protest against the university's vice-chancellor (file picture)DUTA members protest against the university’s vice-chancellor (file picture)

“The EC has unanimously authorised me to take measures in respect of teachers’ attendance. It should be up by January,” vice-chancellor, Professor Dinesh Singh, said.

The biometric system has been in the pipeline for last three years, though opposition from teachers had put it on the backburner.

However, a PIL in the high court following an affidavit from the university in September had made it clear that recording the attendance of teachers was inevitable now.

“The V-C has received feedback from students saying that a large number of teachers still do not attend classes regularly. The biometric system is necessary to make them fall in line,” a senior DU official, said.

The V-C has been making surprise rounds of colleges to find out what the real situation is.

“In fact, the registrar’s office keeps an eye on the teachers who have been protesting outside V-C’s office for last three weeks,” the official said.

The biometric devices will be installed in all colleges and departments in the coming weeks. They can record teachers’ attendance by matching their fingerprints or retina with the records in the databank.

“Teachers of DU are scandalised by the manner in which the executive council, despite opposition from the elected members, has allowed itself to be completely subverted and misled into abdicating its own statutory responsibility,” a statement released by DU Teachers’ Association, said.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/indiahome/indianews/article-2227758/Delhi-University-biometric-attendance-January-2013.html#ixzz2BNM0Hl2X
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Presumed Guilty: After 14 wasted years in prison, life begins anew


PRAYAAG AKBAR NEW DELHI | 19th Feb

Mohammed Aamir at his home in Sadr Bazaar. Aamir spent 14 years in jail before being acquitted in January this year. Photograph: ABHISHEK SHUKLA

n the night of 20 February 1998, in the Sadr Bazaar area of Delhi, a young man walked to the neighbourhood hakeem seeking treatment for a persistent kidney stone problem. The 18-year-old had just said his namaaz at the Madrasahwaali Masjid and, in pain, decided to walk across the desolate marketplace — by day this is one of the busiest spots in the city, but at night it empties like a sieve — even more so in the ’90s, when Indian retail did not shriek with the vehemence of today.

As the boy walked he noticed an unmarked white Maruti Gypsy sidle up along the kerb behind him. It moved slowly, prompting him to quicken his pace, though he continued to walk, staring ahead. The Gypsy overtook him and then, without warning, a pair of hands shoved him in the back. He raised his hands to protect himself from falling, but before he knew it he’d been hauled into the Gypsy. Blindfolded, hands tied and mouth gagged in a matter of seconds, trapped in a mélange of elbows, insults and accents, he was driven to a destination 40 minutes away and deposited in a room. Here he was routinely beaten, tortured, fed at the rarest possible intervals, and made to sign blank papers and disclosure agreements. There was no question of providing access to legal representation.

The boy left that room seven days later, when he was taken to Delhi’s Tees Hazari Court to be charged with 17 cases of murder, terrorism and waging war against the nation. By the time he was acquitted of the charges brought against him — the High Court ruled that any evidence connecting the accused to the bombings was “woefully absent” — Mohammed Aamir was 32 years old. He spent 14 years “ground in the mortar and pestle” of the Indian justice system (main kanoon ke chaal mein pis kar aa raha hoon). In the years before he could once again walk into the modest room in Azad Market where he was born, his father had died, his mother left mute and paralysed by a stroke.

Read more here

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