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Shimla councillor assault case: All 4 arrested accused released on bail

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BJP Councilor attack

SHIMLA- In regard to case of assault on councillor in Shimla town, four arrested men have been released on bail after questioning. Yesterday, Shimla Police had arrested four out of six people who were mentioned in the FIR registered on July 3 by victim Sanjay Parmar, elected councillor of Kachi Ghati Ward of Shimla Municipal Corporation.

Parmar was allegedly assaulted by four accused, identified as Amit Kohli, Jitender, Gattu, Rohal with two others. In the FIR, Parmar has stated that he was returning from Chandigarh and another person, Nitin Madotra, also accompanied him.

He alleged that six men, including four identified accused, intercepted his car near Sonu Bungalow in Shimla, pulled out them from their vehicle and thrashed them brutally. They were using vulgar language while beating him and threatening repeatedly. The case is being investigated by ASI Bhagat Ram, I/O PS Shimla West. The accused were booked under Section 47, 149, 323, 504, 506 of IPC.

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In media statements, Parmar alleged that all six men are workers of Youth Congress who assaulted him for joining BJP after winning election for the seat of councillor. He termed it a pre-planned attack on the behest of Vikramaditya, son of Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh and President of Youth Congress, Himachal Pradesh. All six men were repeatedly reminding him that he had betrayed Vikramadiya, Parmar told media. 

He further alleged that arrested men are workers of Youth Congress, and they were campaigning for him prior to SMC elections. Parmar has demanded police security claiming he was given life threats by accused. He also alleged that the sole eyewitness, who was present with him, was also given life threat and warned of not giving any statement to police regarding the assault. 

However, no statement has been released by Congress or Youth Congress in response to these allegation.

Enraged over this incident, State unit of Bhartiya Janata Party, several party leaders, and workers had staged protest at the CTO Shimla on Tuesday evening demanding action against culprits. The workers also submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner, Shimla. The workers demanded charging culprits with Section 307 (attempt to murder) as police charged them with only bailable charges.

Former Chief Minister, Prem Kumar Dhumal, also criticised the attack, and said the Congress doesn’t have any belief in democratic system. Rather, Congress, afraid of BJP’s victories in various Assembly Elections, has taken to dictatorship.

Suresh Bhardwaj, BJP MLA from Shimla, termed it as an expression of frustration after losing SMC polls. He said CM Virbhadra, who is facing serious corruption charges, has lost three out of four seats in his own constituency. Frustrated over its failure on every front, Congress has now taken to hooliganism, and has resorted to ‘gundagardi’, he said.

Police is trying to protect the culprits, and it’s evident from the fact that Parmar’s medical report didn’t mention fracture that he sustained on his nose, BJP alleged. Police took over six hours to conduct the medical so that facts could be manipulated to save the culprits, he said. 

BJP  Spokesperson, Dr. Rajeev Bindal termed it as gundaraj of Congress government. It’s an attack on democracy, he said. Parmar is an elected candidate, and it’s matter of shame that a public representative isn’t safe in Himachal. The government is involved and the attack was pre-planed, he further alleged.

Former Horticulture Minister, Narinder Bragta, also lashed out at the Congress government, and said that law and order condition has deteriorated and the attack on the Councillor is clear evidence of it. Mafia raj has flourished throughout the state during the five year tenure of the Congress government. Current government is providing patronage to mafia, he alleged.

Goons of Youth Congress have launched similar attacks on BJP earlier too, in which a senior party worker had lost his eye. On the day of MC poll results too, Congress goons had attacked BJP workers, a case regarding which was registered and is under investigation, said BJP.

 

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Haryana Tourists Fire Bullets in Air at Hatu Mata Temple, Brandish Rifle, Manhandle Priest

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Hatu temple gun fire by tourists

Shimla-Following regular instances of hooliganism and assaults with weapons by tourists from neighbouring states, especially Punjab and Haryana, the Himachal Pradesh Police had announced regular checking of tourist vehicles on borders to prevent them from carrying weapons into the state. However, the tourists continue to bring weapons, including firearms, into the state.   

In a fresh incident, some tourists from Haryana on October 13, 2021, reportedly fired bullets in the air near the Hatu Mata Temple, Narkanda.  On hearing the sound of gunshots, the priest of the temple, Lalit Sharma, approached these tourists and objected to it. The tourists allegedly grabbed him by the neck and gave him life threats.

The priest freed himself somehow and immediately informed the temple committee about the incident. A member of the temple committee also informed the local police.

The priest said that a special pooja (worship) was organized at the temple on the occasion of Durga Ashtami and a large number of people was present inside the premises to participate in the pooja. This incident created panic among these devotees.

A taxi driver, Shravan Kumar, told police that two cars – HR 16X-3753 MG Hector & PB 26G-5555 Fortuner- were parked in the middle of the Hatu Mata link road, blocking the traffic. The tourists in these vehicles were brandishing guns and creating a nuisance. A short video clip showing one of these men brandishing a gun from their vehicle has also appeared. It was speculated that these men were intoxicated. 

Later, the local police arrived at the scene and apprehended about eight tourists for questioning. The police recovered a pistol, a rifle, and a dozen of bullets from the men. Cases were filed against two of them. When inquired in front of the temple committee, the two tourists told the police their names and addresses. They were identified as Kuldeep, 37, of Tehsil Lauharu, District Bhiwani, Haryana,  and Abhishek Kumar, 27, of district Bhawani, Harayana.

A case was filed at the Police Station, Kumarsain under Section 336, 34 of IPC and 25-54/59 of the Arms Act. The Deputy Superintendent of Police, Rampur, Chandrashekhar confirmed the report.

The temple committee has expressed concern over the incident and asked the police and the district administration to take stringent action against these men for hooliganism and creating a nuisance. The committee also urged that steps should be taken to prevent such incidents in the future.

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New Chief Justice of HP High Court Justice Mohammad Rafiq Takes Oath

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New Chief Justice of Himachal PRadesh High Court justice mohammad rafiq

Shimla-The new Chief Justice of Himachal Pradesh High Court, Justice Mohammad Rafiq, was today administered the oath of office by Governor Rajendra Vishwanath Arlekar in a ceremony held at Raj Bhawan.

Justice Mohammad Rafiq was born on 25th May 1960 at Sujangarh in the Churu district of Rajasthan. He completed B.Com in 1980, LL.B in 1984 and M.Com in 1986 from the University of Rajasthan.

He, later on, joined the Bar and practised as an Advocate after enrolment with the Bar Council of Rajasthan on 8th July 1984. He practised exclusively in Rajasthan High Court at Jaipur in almost all branches of law and specially conducted constitutional matters, service matters, land acquisition cases, land revenue cases, preventive detention cases, customs & excise matters, railway claims cases, tax matters, company matters and criminal matters before the High Court.

He worked as Assistant Government Advocate for the State of Rajasthan from 15th July 1986 to 21st December 1987 and Deputy Government Advocate from 22nd December 1987 to 29th June 1990. He appeared before the High Court as panel advocate for various Departments of the State Government for five years i.e. from 1993 to 1998.

He also represented the Union of India as Standing Counsel from 1992 to 2001 before the High Court. He also represented the Indian Railways, Rajasthan State Pollution Control Board, Rajasthan Board of Muslim Wakfs, Jaipur Development Authority, Rajasthan Housing Board and Jaipur Municipal Corporation before the Rajasthan High Court.

He was appointed as Additional Advocate General for the State of Rajasthan on 7th January 1999 and worked as such till his elevation to the Bench. He was appointed as Judge of the Rajasthan High Court on 15th May 2006. He also worked as Acting Chief Justice of Rajasthan High Court twice; from 7th April 2019 to 4th May 2019 and from 23rd September 2019 to 5th October 2019. He was also the Executive Chairman of the Rajasthan State Legal Services Authority and the Administrative Judge of the Rajasthan High Court before elevation as the Chief Justice. He was the Chief Justice of the High Court of Meghalaya from 13th November 2019 to 26th April 2020. Justice Mohammad Rafiq was administered the oath of office of the Chief Justice of Orissa High Court on 27th April 2020, on being transferred from the Meghalaya High Court. He was administered the oath of office of the Chief Justice of the High Court of Madhya Pradesh on 3rd January 2021, on being transferred from the Orissa High Court.

The ceremony took place at the Darbar Hall of Raj Bhawan, where Chief Secretary Ram Subhag Singh conducted the proceedings of the oath ceremony and read out the notification issued by the Government of India, Ministry of Law and Justice regarding the transfer of Justice Mohammad Rafiq as Chief Justice of the HP High Court.

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HP Bypolls 2021: Bragta Doesn’t Withdraw Nomination, Remains Out of Sight Entire Day to Evade BJP Leadership

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chetan bragta's election symbol is apple

Shimla-Chetan Bragta, who has revolted against the Bharatiya Janata Party over denial of ticket to him, didn’t withdraw his nomination. October 13 was the last day for the withdrawal of nominations.  BJP leaders, who had been claiming that Bragta would withdraw his nomination, kept searching for him throughout the day but couldn’t find him or connect to him.

As per reports, Bragta had disappeared this morning to avoid BJP leaders and his mobile numbers were also switched off. However, Bragta posted a video on social media after the time for withdrawal of nomination ended. In this video, Bragta informed that the Election Commission has allotted “apple” as his election symbol. He also said that he would not step back and would fight the elections as an independent candidate.


The reports also said that BJP workers and leaders kept searching for Bragta in order to convince him to withdraw his nomination. However, the reports said, to avoid this pressure for withdrawal, he decided to disappear and switch off his mobile numbers.

Meanwhile, there are speculations that BJP is likely to expel him from the party. BJP, while denying him a ticket for the HP by polls 2021, had cited discouraging ‘dynastic politics’ as the reason. 

Pertinent to mention that BJP had denied a ticket to Chetan Braga – son of former MLA Narender Bragta- from the Jubbal-Kotkhai Assembly seat that had fallen vacant after the demise of his father. The ticket was instead given to Neelam Seraik.

While the chances of Neelam’s victory already seems to be bleak, Chetan Bragta has further aggravated the tension for BJP. This rebellion could benefit Congress Candidate Rohit Thakur.

BJP had faced revolt on all three Assembly seats over denial of ticket. However, somehow it convinced the miffed leaders on Arki and Fatehpur Assembly seats to not file nominations as independent candidates. However, BJP failed to do so in the case of Chetan Bragta. BJP had been maintaining that there is no resistance to its selected candidates from within the party.

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